Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Two Degrees on Facebook

Hollywood action blockbusters would have you think that hiding out as a wanted fugitive doesn't take much more than a cheap haircut, an unwashed hoodie and a hunched posture.  Or else the infamously paltry disguise used by Clark Kent with his rumpled locks and thick glasses.

Seriously who could ever mistake that bohunk body even hidden under layers of overly large mismatched office attire.

Who are we kidding? With almost everyone - even spoilt lil rugrats these days - having the latest cellphones / tablets with easily available internet access at hand, it's nearly impossible to hide. With near indispensable social networks linking everyone we know - and a few million we don't - such as Facebook, we can practically forget about anonymity.

Waitaminute, haven't I seen those legs on Facebook? 

Especially when you have an eminently recognizable visage like mine. So much for keeping a somewhat low profile here.

Paul : Do you have any questions regarding this procedure?
Patient : Umm... do you mind me asking?
Paul : Fire away.
Patient : You're the Dr Paul on facebook right? 
Paul : Well, yes? 
Patient : Yeah, I knew I recognized you. You're Charming Calvin's friend, right? 
Paul : Well, yes!

There was a telling glance and a barely concealed smirk that let me know that she must have vaguely guessed the illicit connection between us.

Is it my hawkish nose? How did she distinguish my seemingly below average face from the dozens out there - especially since I have a shockingly tiny picture insert?  Did I have an abnormally large pimple?

Turns out having a Facebook account can be doubly dangerous these days. While we're relatively caught up in other people's mundane daily minutiae on their Facebook and Tweets, we sometimes blithely forget that others might be similarly stalking us as well. Not the first time it happened to me since a few months back, I actually got poked - both online and offline - by a total stranger who claimed he managed to identify me from Facebook. Seems we had more than a gay cruiseload of mutual friends in common.

And he even recognized me from several hundred metres away in an airport!

Thankfully he was really cute which helped diminish the creepy stalker vibe he'd have otherwise. Whoever said being pretty wasn't useful?


rotiboy said...

Yeah Facebook can be useful to identify if a person is one of us but it can also be used against us.. Okay, maybe that's only for people like me who don't enjoy unwanted attention by strangers.

Tempus said...

oh please, even blogger can be a major problem. I think one of my senior in vet school busted me. She'd even started commenting on the blogs of the people among the circle.

Let's hope she's smart enough to spill the beans only between us.

savante said...

Don't think I enjoyed it either! I was appalled, rotiboy.

But yeah these days, everything online can be seen, tempus.