Sunday, March 16, 2008

Googling

Villas Girl,

First - aren't these lovely? My friend, Lisa, the Villas Girl, sent them to me by email this morning.


What a nice way to start my day! Thank you, Lisa.

And check out her blog to see what else she did for me.

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Have you ever Googled yourself? I'm sure most people have.

Some time ago I decided to see if I could find a high school friend with whom I had lost touch. She and her husband had moved repeatedly all over the U.S. This woman has what I think of as an unusual name, and her husband's name is definitely odd, so I didn't think it would present much of a problem. How wrong can you get? I found six women with the same name and their husband's names were also the same. Since I didn't want to contact six people and freak them out be asking all kinds of questions, I gave up the search.

But this started me wondering how easy it would be for someone to find me. Believe me, this can get scary. I found me, with many entries for Flickr and blogs. But I couldn't believe how many other people there were with my name. There is a woman who is involved with the Girl Scouts, one who is a notary down in Boca Raton, another entry in Spanish that I never did figure out. And finally, the scary one. This gal not only has my name, but lives in the same general area. And she has been investigated concerning the deaths of two small children. Do you think if any old friend decides to look me up, they just might decide to back off?

While I was at it, I decided to Google my children. They were pretty interesting. For two of them there was nothing about them personally, but all sorts of nice other people with their names. One of the others did have an entry for herself. Then the fourth, Kitty, has dozens of entries concerning her writing, poetry, hosting on NPR, etc. I didn't even finish reading hers to find out if there was anyone else with her name.

It can be a fun way to waste some time. Try it, you might be surprised at what you find. But if you're looking for a long-lost friend, don't believe everything you read.

22 comments:

Sandpiper said...

First, I want to wish you a very happy birthday. Then I must tell you that I have googled myself, as well as old friends. The internet can be filled with fantastic discoveries. I lost contact with dear friends for 32 years, then one day I googled a town in NC, and there on the page of the site I went ot, was my friend's face! My jaw dropped. I picked up the phone and called him immediately and now I'm in touch with his wife on a continual basis again. :)

kenju said...

Happy Birthday, Bobbie!

I google myself about 2 x per year. There are at least 3-4 other women with my name (which is sort of odd, I think). One works at the Univ. of Chicago and one is well known (with her husband) for barbecue in Fl, I think. It's fun to do!

Ralph said...

Happy Birthday. Cyber flowers?
Ralph

Law Student Hot Mama said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

When I googled Whittier, Alaska, I got all these strange images of horrible maimed limbs. Not sure why. At least you don't get those pictures, right?!

Minnesotablue said...

HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Haven't tried the google thing yet, maybe I'll try.

bobbie said...

Thank you all for the birthday wishes.

Sandpiper, its neat that you could find an old friend like that! Google can work.

Judy, twice a year? That sounds like a good idea. Think I'll check more often.

Ralph, yes, cyber flowers are great. But Lisa came over with a bunch of fresh ones later. She's a sweetheart. Like another daughter to me.

No, hot mama, no maimed limbs, thank God! Just suspected child killers.

Minnesotablue, you should try it. I read your post about grandparents. Know how you feel. I never knew any of mine. Always wished I knew what they were like. Rumor has it my one grandfather, who toured with a vaudeville company, was "no better than he should have been" as they used to say. But wouldn't it be interesting to learn about him?

Singing Bear said...

Happy Birthday! Have a great one.

Googling? When I first got connected up to the internet I couldn't resist seeing what other people with my real name might be up to. It was pretty funny. I was surprised by how many other poor souls have to carry around the same name as me! Haha! :)

I don't think I'd find anything about me on the net. Not sure I'd want to either. It might be unsettling. Anonymity is nice.

The Pagan Sphinx said...

Bobbie = happy birthday. Is Kitty your daughter? What does she do for NPR? Inquiring minds want to know...

Peace,
the P.S.

brucesc said...

Happy Birthday, Bobbie!! I thought surely I was the oldest blogger ever, so I'm glad to see you are six months older than me!! Old age ain't for sissies, as they say.
I really enjoyed your meme and the lovely old family photos.
I google myself fairly often to see how my art website is doing in the race for viewers. Nobody else has my name though!

bobbie said...

Thank you. I did have a really nice birthday.

Laughing Bear, it is, indeed, very funny to see how many duplicates we have.

Sphinx, Kitty is my youngest daughter. She doesn't do much NPR work now - just occasionally. She used to do quite a few interviews with authors, etc. My favorite was with Isabel Allende. I think it was her favorite too. She did some other things as well - out of Santa Cruz.

Bruce, you are so right! Sissies don't want to grow old. But there are a few compensations. Grandchildren being one of them. Can't wait until the 28th of March, when our 3 year old will arrive here.

bobbie said...

Singing bear - I do apologize. But then, laughing isn't so bad, is it? I hope you do a lot of that too.

Dianne said...

Happy Bithday Bobbie!

My favorite comedian, Craig Ferguson, does these wonderful bits that all start with "well I was Googling ---- and ----. Of course first I googled myself"

Googled myself has become a naughty inside joke ;)

bobbie said...

Hee hee hee

Cliff said...

Dear Bobbie, IF that is your real name. And how do I know which one I'm commenting to here anyway. Now I'm spooked.
I guess I'll go google myself. :)

Michael Manning said...

Bobbie: A married couple who knew Steve McQueen's great friend and frequent co-star, Don Gordon contacted me as did the son whose father was involved with the Robert Redford film "Brubaker". A few days later, the grown son of a Guest on my feature "THE INTERVIEW" googled his dad and read my interview with him. He then called his dad and said "Jeez, I didn't know you did all that!"

thepoetryman said...

Lovely flowers!

I want to say how much I love your "Antonio Machado" quote on the "path" in your header. It is, I believe, the best header quote, if not any quote I've yet to read. Reminds me somewhat of Kahlil Gibran.

bobbie said...

Cliff, it's one of my many names. Thanks for stopping by.

Michael, I am amazed at how many comments resulted from this post. You were fortunate to have had so many contacts through Google.

poetryman, thank you. The Antonio Machado quote is one my daughter and son-in-law used at their wedding. I do love it, and yes, it reminds me of Gibran's Sand and Foam. - You have a rather amazing site yourself. I stop[ped by.

Singing Bear said...

bobbie: What's the apology for?

Love your blog, as ever.

bobbie said...

Beacause I called you "laughingbear" instead of singingbear.

Singing Bear said...

Oh...I'm so unobservant! I think I might change my name to Laughing Bear, having discovered there's a folk singer in the US now using my name...which has been mine for many, many years! The cheek! :)

Keep up the great work.

thepoetryman said...

"Laughing bear", "singing bear"... Either way, if you're one or the other, you'll end up being both.

Bobbie,
Much thanks for your words about my blog. I don't know exactly what I would do without it and those on my sidebar. Keeps me sane in such a teetering world.

Peace.

Shady Gardener said...

Happy birthday, late. What a wonderful friend you have! Lovely bouquet. :-)

And, I think I'll do a google search.