I started a new job this week. Yeah, well, whatever. It is what it is. And it is the fifth new city in six years. Which is exactly what a person who’s bad at introducing himself to others, such as myself, is really looking for. Mommas, don’t let you children be scientists. Let them be plumbers and welders and shit, anything but scientists.
Well. Anyway. I go to human resources for the “technology orientation” program. They tell me to log into bannerweb. They ask me to verify that all my data is correct. Address? Correct. Phone number? Correct. Social security number? Correct. Email address? An electric blue lightning bolt of ice-covered frozen terror strikes me in the soul. The email address that they have on record is, somehow, impossibly, firstname.lastname@example.org.
In case you’re not the attentive type, look at that: aol.com. AMERICA ONLINE, DOT COM. The last time I checked that email address, AOL cost $9.95 an hour, and when you got an email, a voice would come on and tell you that you had an email, because that shit happened so rarely that it was worth the computational resources of a .wav file installed to your desktop. It was windows 3.1, and I had 2.1 mbps and I thought I was hot shit. We upgraded, years later, to 36.6 and again I thought I was hot shit, just before all that 56.6 bullshit hit the market.
But I digress from the point: MY GOD IN HEAVEN, HOW DID THEY FIND THAT ADDRESS? They ONLY thing that I can imagine is that bannerweb carries over information, and in 1999 I had registered that email address when I was signing up for college.
Anyway, I changed the email address. The woman running the session actually commented on the fact that I suddenly looked pale and terrified. She said pale and sick, but whatever. The only thought I could think was: if they knew of this address, what else did they know? It was 1999! $9.95 an hour! Chat rooms! You’ve got mail! There were so many mistakes. There were so many misunderstandings. There were so many titties.