Wednesday, August 06, 2003


I may be unusual in this: for as long as I've had computers, whenever I get a new one--which usually has a much larger hard drive than the old one--I copy all the files from the old system to the new one. What this means is that I never really know what, exactly, is on my hard drive. There's stuff on there from way back.

I was looking around on my computer this evening and came across an old Netscape directory, so I checked out the cache folder and discovered a snapshot of what I was looking at on the web in November 1999. Apparently I had abiding (okay, fleeting) interests in: BIOS upgrades; the 1980s Swedish band Magnus Uggla;; the University of Wisconsin's political science department; the 1950s sci-fi movie The Day the Earth Stood Still; the Simpsons; Biblical exegesis; and the French rapper MC Solaar.

And, oh yes--what made me cringe tonight: the naked male body. The reason I cringed is that in November 1999, I was still in the closet. Other than a few furtive encounters, I'd never told anybody about the appeal the naked male body held for me. So that fall I was, to judge from this archive, sitting in my rented room, looking at naked men with Netscape, and hoping my flatmates wouldn't walk in--probably taking pains to be sure they didn't.

Looking back, it's hard to remember what it was like keeping this secret. How strange that there was this part of me I never, ever talked about. How strange that I was dating women at the time--including one, just a few months later, who I thought could be The One. (You'll be shocked to learn I never told her about the naked Netscape boys.)

There's a lot more honesty in my life now. What a relief.

P.S. The cache also contained this picture.

No comments: