But the other day someone started IMing me and justbeast looked over my shoulder and read a little and said: holy shit, really? And I said: sure, people IM me to say this kind of stuff all the time. He asked why I answered. Well, I don't know they're going to flip out halfway through the conversation, and I always try to be polite in one-on-one communications.
I know, right? It's hard to believe that I'm polite, but I am, really, quite often. Even this post will be much more polite than a less even-tempered person might be, as I promise you every one of these things has actually happened to me when a stranger IMs me. More than once. More than twice.
So if we don't really know each other and you're thinking of IMing me, just to have some friendly talk or to ask me something about a book or to be all OMGDOCTORWHOWHUT, then you TOTALLY should. But there are real and serious reasons not to IM me. Consider this a public service announcement. Here we go.
You should not IM me if:
1. You are looking for an American wife.
Especially if you are looking for an American wife and chose me to contact because I have black hair and look a little bit Asian at a certain angle and I have a Japanese username. I no longer live in Japan. I am not a Japanese woman. My name is not Neko-chan. I retain the username because by now it's part of my identity and my time in Japan will always be a part of me. Also snow and death = yay. However, and this is the important part--I am not your blow up anime love doll. Neither are any other Japanese women, but since I can't speak for them, I will just say that I, personally, am extremely unlikely to marry you so that you can get citizenship and/or satisfy your creepy Asian fetish. I promise you, just because I was looking down in that profile pic does not mean I am a nice submissive girl who darn your socks while giving you a blow job. It's just not me. I mean, sure, sometimes I think about sublimating my entire life, ambition, personality, and dignity to a stranger on the internet so that he can enjoy the fruits of my labor at his sink, green card, and dick--WHO DOESN'T. But then I see a butterfly or something and my flightly female mind forgets all about you, international internet male.
2. You would like to have cybersex.
I'm not saying I've never had cybersex. It's not what I would call my crowning moment of personal dignity, but it was hot and everything. (I mean, I was a teenager and older British Gilesy Oxbridge type--I AM ONLY HUMAN. Tweed is like my kryptonite, dude.) In the dark, strange depths of my past, there may have once even been a webcam involved. I'm not telling. WE ALL DO STUPID SHIT WHEN WE'RE YOUNG. OR OLD. WHATEVER. The thing is, these days, I enjoy dignity. I like to take dignity out to a nice dinner and maybe a flick, and bring dignity an orchid corsage and tell it it's pretty. Dignity and I are tight. So it's highly improbable that I am going to drop my busy work schedule to help you have a pleasant wank. When I have engaged over the internet, it has been with people I've been talking with about other things for quite a while. Henry Miller and French film and Scottish acrchitecture. THEN with the adult material. Because poor spelling and grammar are serious turn offs for me, and let's face it, no one ever got an invitation to cybersex printed on linen, trimmed in lace, and sealed in wax. It's more of the greasy back of a paper bag that once held rotgut sort of thing. Me and dignity don't roll like that.
3. You enjoyed my recent post/movie review/essay and want to encourage me to follow my talent and try my hand at fiction.
Dude, and they're always dudes, seriously. Did you even look at my profile? It is not hard to figure me out, yo. And you might think this doesn't happen very often but believe me when I say at least once a month some guy wants to be my muse or mentor and thinks I need to be gently massaged with the tips of his own personal angel wings into trying a little bit of fiction and maybe, just maybe, submitting somewhere. Preferably to him, in his room, I imagine. This goes double for dudes who want to yell at me because I said something about feminism or racism in literature, and have decided the ULTIMATE ARGUMENT will be to tell me to write my own damn books. Though you might think it's a nice opportunity to link someone to my website or talk about my own books, it's really actually not that fun. Especially after the tenth or tweflth time. Since, in order to IM me, I know that you had to go over to my profile in the first place, you might take a glance at the colorful graphics of my novel covers, dude. Also, you are not going to be my personal Verlaine (and you wouldn't want to, it's a shit gig) and guide me into the rarified world of letters. Fo shizzle.
4. You would like to share your opinons on Ayn Rand.
I wish this didn't have to be stated. But nothing about this journal should indicate to you that I will be in any way receptive to your effusive love for objectivism, nor your dismissal of other humans who do not live up to your libertarian ideals. Because frankly, I find it unlikely that you yourself are a tower of industry, walking alone like Eliot's fucking cat through this fallen world of people not as awesome as you. We all need each other, I'm not your Dagny, and John Galt is a fuckmuppet of the first order. Unless you want to talk about Bioshock. That'd be sweet.
5. Let's say this one together--you want me to look at your manuscript.
The rules for looking at your manuscript are basically the same as the rules for cybersex. If we don't know each other, it's not going to happen. If I read every stranger's book who asked me to I'd never write another word. I literally cannot do this for you. But if we've been talking for a long time, about Henry Miller and French film and Scottish architecture, and there's chemistry, and you catch me at a vulnerable moment, then yeah, maybe after a glass of wine or two I'd be up for some XXX reading action. But I'm a person, too, and I want to be treated like a person, not a gateway to my agent or a shortcut to the book deals that half the time I can't even get for myself. I am not a means to an end. This goes DOUBLE DOG DARE for if you have a great idea for a novel that I should either collaborate with you on or write all by myself and split the profits with you. Sweet guinea pig of Winnipeg, I have my own work to do. Eyes on your own paper! And while a friend can ask for cuddles of the literary type, you, random internet stranger, can't really pull that one off while keeping that fickle filly Dignity in your corner. It's just not cool. Remember your Kant--people are ends in themselves, not means to an end. Ask yourself if you would like to feel as though your value to someone only lies in the favors you could do for them, not yourself or your dreams and secrets and loves. It's not cool, for serious.
Some people actually combine all five, and that's extremely upsetting. And of course, if we're buds? Hit me with your illicit and suave implications while murmuring sweet Randian philosophy in my ear and sliding your novel onto my waiting lap. It's all in the context.