Tuesday, 5 February 2008


Online chatrooms are natural laboratories for the observation of private illusions and public pretensions. Anonymity is the greatest uninhibitor known to man. You never exactly know, moreover, what the conversion is all about. You see bizarre words without apparent meaning; the simple enjoyment of a term defying its function and turning into a thing apart. I wonder, in fact, whether it is possible for anyone to absorb the codex of chatroom expressions, or to fathom their meanings by any reasonable processes of thought.

So you might think that internet chatrooms are not worthy of proper cultural analysis? You’d be wrong. No accusation could be less justified. Given the versatility of the medium, chatroom doublespeak makes an obscure but peculiarly cultural vernacular. Not unlike the way expressionists employed allegory in a pattern of artistically and emotionally encoded metaphors, the mind loves to forge connecting links. As an asinine pursuit of a gratification universally celebrated, chatroom mania has, in fact, swept the world.

Nor am I against nonsense as such. Though it was with a sense of premonition that I logged on to chatroom T*********, on Friday February 1st at 5:45 P.M. Within minutes of arriving I wanted to leave. But as I began monitoring fragments of the online conversation - and working on my second Martini, incidentally - the screen with the IMs flipped on.

Hotmale 197: ‘Hi Dreamy!’

I watched them for a while. Online, there are no inhibitions. To say that art emulates life is stating the obvious. But something in this process reminded me of biological propagation, of spermatozoa, in a spasm of passionate frenzy, gagging for the ovarian egg. The results were totally gratifying. I wouldn’t give much for the serialization rights, but the following I thought was the way for a symbol of sinfulness to respond (should anyone wish to emulate me):

Hotmale197: tell me what u r like
Selenadreamy: I’m lustful all the time
Hotmale197: 10 out of 10 in my book
Selenadreamy: is it a big book?
Hotmale197: a hardback, folio
Selenadreamy: I wouldn’t have it otherwise
Hotmale197: send me a pic and I’ll turn into a poet
Selenadreamy: give me your best line first
Hotmale197: I don’t have lines, I’m not an advert
Selenadreamy: that will do
Hotmale197: lol - describe yourself
Selenadreamy: words would be inadequate
Hotmale197: try a little...
Selenadreamy: ...tenderness?
Hotmale197: hair colour will do
Selenadreamy: blonde
Hotmale197: long?
Selenadreamy: and natural!
Hotmale197: height?
Selenadreamy: tall enough to reach for the stars
Hotmale197: u work 4 Disney?
Selenadreamy: DreamWorks!
Hotmale197: u talk like that in real life?
Selenadreamy: always word perfect
Hotmale197: r u quite human?
Selenadreamy: I have the most perfect figure
Hotmale197: truly incredible
Selenadreamy: few can match me
Hotmale197: what a drag
Selenadreamy: my very own sentiment
Hotmale197: erm...I must go
Selenadreamy: better luck next time!

There went a disappointed suitor (I always like to take them out in the first round). After that it got much less interesting:

Starky269: Any pics, babe?
MrSmoochy: Hi, cuty how’s it going?
Macdafy566: I love u hun...
Hermit2205: Dreamy don’t go...

Men are unbelievable. More like pre-pubescent boys. In fact, what was scary is just how successful this experiment was. Like Rome under Messalina! The astonishing effect of that carnal drive: male libido! In less than five minutes after logging on, the IMs came pouring in like lemmings over the cliff.

The concept of the superiority of the female over the male has never for one moment been in doubt. In fact, I have suspected for some time that one half of the species is being held in thrall by the other. Women just sit there. But men come on again and again, as if driven by some indomitable demon which I could not even begin to explain. What is it they are trying to exorcise? What the thing that renders their libido so matchlessly abject? Gosh, it really scares the hell out of me. I’ll say that again, it’s horrifying. Abysmal. End of conversation!



Richard Madeley said...

A big broad grin on my face, Selena. Would it surprise you to know that I was 'Hotmale 197'? If only I'd known it was you on the other end of the chat, I'd have believed in your come on. I was so sure you were burly and beaded.

I must ask you, though. You claim that 'the mind loves to forge connecting links' but 1 in 4 of your metaphors has to do with sperm. As you know, Hotmale 197 is no prude but I've just had my tea and I can still taste my curried veal.

Anonymous said...

They were not male Ms Dreamy - they actually were real Lemmings! Yes the on-line Lemming community is well known for artfully 'ragging' young human women in chat rooms. They claim it is part of their alleged Norwegian heritage - but I suggest it is a born from the insecurity of being a small weasel like creature dogged by intellect!

Recusant said...

Well I was invited over to continue the 'online date', but find myself feeling compelled to defend the male of the species.

Well I would if I could, but there is no defence worthy of the name, so let's try explanation instead.

The male brain can encompass many wondrous and complex things. It can be creative; sharp; poetic; incisive; forensic; sagacious; amusing; profound; direct; romantic and a host of other equally diverse characteristics. However, and it's a big however, it also has a little brother brain who can only encompass three things: sex; eating/drinking; sleeping.

Little brother brain is a nippy little bugger and if you give him so much as a flash of a possibility of satisfying his base urges, he'll be out there and humping your leg like some demented Jack Russell before your proper, formal brain has even been notified of any new apparition on its normal information feeds. Basically, "it's not our fault: it's that little fucker over there. I know he lives with me, an'all, but I didn't invite him in. He's squatting. And he ruins all my attempts to look mature and sophisticated.

Now about that date. Are you the one in the Betty Grable style 'Peekabo' shoes and the DvF dress or the black pencil skirt and short waisted jacket?

Jonathan said...

'What is it they are trying to exorcise?'

Maybe they're trying to exorcise their need for the female, which they lack in themselves..

By getting the woman, they interiorise the feminine at least for awhile, and so become whole.

Why do women want men, if we're so inferior?

Anonymous said...

he'll be out there and humping your leg like some demented Jack Russell

I must protest this slur on the Jack Russell community... we are blamed for a lot that is not really our fault. Or maybe clever Mr Recusant has worked out the meaning of me avatar...

Selena Dreamy said...

Gentlemen, I’ve read all of your comments, very carefully (twice).

You’ve given me great insight. I’m much clearer now in my mind. The part about having two brains, is particularly appropriate - as Recusant said, “at the expense of looking mature and sophisticated”. It’s amazing how true that is. Libido just takes over. Men are helpless when faced with a skirt hitched up. So why should I keep my legs together? It is at these times that I’m glad I’m a girl.

And Jonathan, what a poetic rendering of the thing. The fascination of a poet's soul for the existence of complex circular mechanisms which may be linked to the whole. Brilliant!

Richard & Mutley, you’re very naughty (but then, you both know that)!


Richard Madeley said...

Scold me, Selena, scold me!

(And let me follow Mutley's lead in defending the honour of Jack Russell who was one of the nation's finest keeper of the stumps.)

Jonathan said...

I'd rather help myself than be helpless when a skirt's hitched up...:)

If I may Presume such a hitching is an invitation....?

Moi, a poet? Why thank you Dreamy.