We’ve All Been There: Online Stalking

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[It doesn’t matter what school you go to, what state it is in, how big it is, whether it is public or private, all girls or coed…there are experiences that all college students share.

No matter how crazy you think your personal situation is, it is not just you. So, let’s bring it all out in the open. Right here. Because you are not alone - we’ve all been there before.]

Your friend from class invites you to a party. Looking for a change of social scenery (there are only so many days in a row that you can play Kings with the same 6 people), you go. It’s a whole new social circle and you are excited to see what else your campus has to offer.

While waiting in line for the keg, you start chatting it up with a rather handsome man (in a pair of hot jeans…yes, you looked). Turns out, he’s also funny, charming, and has this cute little dimple in his left cheek when he smiles. You spend a good chunk of the night talking, but then the keg runs out and your friend drags you out of the house in search of greener (or boozier) pastures.

So now you have left the party….without his number.

The night progresses in a blur of flip cup, party hopping, and a hazy memory of peeing in a sink. When you wake up, you feel like crap – and also have an empty Tupperware that once housed you roommate’s mom’s homemade cookies next to your bed. You lay in bed attempting to put the pieces of the night together when – BAM – the Keg Cutie comes flooding into your mind.

You have to figure out who he is. You slowly crawl out of bed, realize you are naked and put on some sweats, then settle in in front of your laptop. First stop: trusty ole’ FB, of course.

You look up your class friend and then scroll through all 787 of her friends until you find Keg Cutie’s tiny thumbnail pic. Lucky for you, he hasn’t hopped on the “total FB privacy” bandwagon yet and you have full access to his profile. You tell yourself you are just trying to get a last name so you can send a cute and witty email, but before you know it you are memorizing his favorite movies, class schedule and causes.

“I wonder if he’s as cute as I remember,” you think. “I’ll just look at a few pics.”

Thirty minutes and 453 pictures later, you are looking at the profile and albums of that hussy who was in at least 70 of his pics with him.   You convince yourself she is an ex (“the albums she was in were added in 2007, so they can’t still be together!”) and feel a little better.

You realize that you and Keg Cutie have a few other friends in common and work your way through FB to figure out the connections. Not that you want to show up wherever he may be…. No, you are just curious.

When you’ve exhausted all Facebook resources, you stop caring about how stalkerish you’ve become and look the boy up on your University’s database (to see where he’s living, perhaps?) and Google (to check out his past).

By 3pm, you know more about Keg Cutie than you know about your own family members. Like the fact that he lives in the dorm next to you. You decide maybe it’s time to start dining in a different cafeteria… and putting on makeup to do so. Maybe you’ll check out their study lounges too. And you’re sure you have a few friends in there you can start hanging out with again…

I mean, that’s not weird, is it?

Well, yes, it is. But we’ve all been there and it’s not our fault; Facebook makes it too easy!

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