In last night’s dream, I was coming back from a conference. Back in lab, everyone was telling me that I was nominated for a research award that I had never heard of. They asked me if I was going to the awards banquet the next day which puzzled me because no one had e-mailed or otherwise contacted me about this. So I looked up this research award online and I saw a link to a video interview someone did with one of the members of the awards committee. I clicked on the link.
The interviewer asked how the nominee was chosen and the awards committee member mentioned some recommendations from some professors I know. So far, this made sense. Then this person was asked, who exactly is this nominee?
“Well,” the awards committee member replied, “there’s actually a lot of detailed information about her online.”
Okay. So maybe this awards committee discovered my weblog.
“Her life is quite picaresque. There’s a photo of her house online which has a bamboo grove growing right outside.”
Bamboo? I thought. I live in Idaho. There’s no bamboo groves growing in Idaho. And even though there are pictures somewhere on my weblog, I’ve never taken any pictures of bamboo.
The awards committee member continued detailing my “exploits” which seemed like somebody else’s life. Maybe me in a parallel universe. But definitely not me here. It’s like being a miner in West Virginia and discovering that somebody with your same name has set up a Facebook account detailing a life of indie rock and silk screen painting in Oakland. And nobody had the ounce of sense to realize that these were two different people.
“That’s not me!” I screamed at the internet video.
But, of course, the video didn’t pay any attention to me. It continued: “And there’s even a biography written about her.” What biography? I’m too young and too boring to warrant a biography. Maybe if I was Andrew Jackson. But I’m not Andrew Jackson. The video flashed a picture of “me”. It’s not me. It’s the picture of that girl in the graduate student association who thinks she knows everything.
I woke up in the middle of the night, heart pounding, thinking that someone else had stolen my life and identity.