August 8th, 2017


SO Clever!

My main email account is on AOL. This shameful fact probably brands me as an official old-timer, but… well, so be it. I’ve had the account for over twenty years. I well remember buying my first modem, plugging my home phone line into it, hooking it up to my computer, then connecting to AOL for the first time. I’d installed AOL off of a floppy disk that had come in the mail, which was how they did it back then.

Up to that point, everything had been pretty simple. I just had to follow the step-by-step instructions that came with my modem, then the step-by-step instructions that came with AOL. But now it was time to get creative – it was time for me to select my screen name. My very first email screen name!

Well now, I’ve got a reputation to uphold here. I’d devoted considerable thought to the matter, and I’d come up with a devilishly clever, triple-entendre sort of screen name, which I do not now recall. I typed it in, and AOL immediately informed me that my clever, one-of-a-kind screen name was already in use.

Well phooey! Okay fine, there are other clever people in the world. I pondered the situation for a while and came up with another dazzlingly inventive screen name. I typed it in, and AOL once again informed me that it was already in use.

This scenario proceeded to play out several more times, always ending in the same result. The cream of my linguistic talents turned out to be a step behind the times on every occasion. And each time, AOL would suggest that I might want to use a screen name that consisted of my first initial and last name. Oh please! ME, settle for one of THOSE screen names? Those poor, dumb AOL computers clearly did not know with whom they were dealing.

Let the record show that my AOL screen name for the last twenty plus years continues to be cgreenia. If nothing else, this was a lesson in humility.
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