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Through the CRT Glass by William Matheson ~ (Exercise in self-portrait)

I can't really see much of my face from here, but time is pressing on me so hard that I can't go to a mirror.

I spend a lot of time in front of this monitor glass. I feel like it's an extension of my universe. As much as one can possibly be, I am on the Internet, and by this I do not mean chronological time. I am simply on the cyber plane, as I have a domain name, and I bare my soul and telephone number and crappy stories for all to see.

Imagine that we could all go online and see the cyberworld as reality. Imagine a room with a hundred cyber-people in it. I am probably the only one with distinct facial features, and the only one whom you could count all the limbs on. A few other people can be seen, but parts of their bodies are blanks. Some are missing arms, others faces. Then there are a dozen or so people who have more parts missing than present, and what's out there is faded. The rest you don't even know are there. So that's what I look like in cyberspace, I think.

I look the same in both worlds, as I use my real pictures online. I've had a few women run away screaming from me online, “are u sexy?” “I don't know. I'd like to be judged by my writings as much as by my appearance.” (she gets the photo) “ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww” (she disconnects) but I think that happens because 1) they are rude and 2) my photos don't do me justice because I am often not smiling in them.

My face often wears a sad expression, like “five days of rain” my mother says. But just today I've been trying to hold onto being happy. I turn twenty tomorrow. Do I look it? Speaking of age, I'm really happy with my hair. My grandfather was buried just this May with a full head of hair, much of it still black, with gray strands on the side of his head. He was 92. Ah, I sound like an old codger already, and with any luck I'll have lots more years to get all nice and old and stuff…

Back before I went to school I wasn't sad. But I think I'll leave that story for another day. It's been overtold lately.

If you look at my eyes you'll notice some dark lines under them. I was up all night last night finishing up “Joey” for this class. (Hint: This isn't helping!!!) I just want to curl up and go to sleep right now, and so does my body. All day today I've been making wrong turns in the corridors, finding it difficult to understand people, you name it. I was also up all night Sunday night / Monday morning working on an English paper.

My fingers enable me to type really fast. Typing is not my problem – I can type almost as fast as I can think. The hard part is the composing. Now that it occurs to me, I am looking at my hands and noticing that the backs of them are very, very dry and they sometimes even bleed at the knuckles. This dates back to an injury I received in high school, where in the men's washroom you could get hot water from the taps but no cold. I left my hands in too long one day, and ouch! So I've been left with this semi-permanent scalding that won't go away. Maybe I wash my hands too much. Maybe I need hand cream.

I wear glasses. I used to wear big aviator-style glasses that I thought were pretty neat initially, but by the end of high school I was downright sick of them. One day a woman I liked named Gemma said I should get rid of my glasses and get contacts. Contacts were out of the question, but I didn't wear my glasses the next day. She noticed right away and said “Awww! He did it because I said he looked better without them!” And she was right. I was really sweet on her that year, but I don't think anyone would have dated me during high school, so I guess it's all in the past. She's back in England now, anyway.

Today my glasses are smaller. They're actually my second pair of the smaller ones; I destroyed the first pair just this past December when my head hit the steering wheel of my mom's 1988 Jeep Wagoneer Limited that I drove into an electric pole. The pole won. Fortunately, my frames were under warranty, so they were replaced without charge. Unfortunately, there was nothing more than liability insurance on the Jeep, and it will cost $5K to fix. I've been walking to the bus stop a lot lately.

Right now I'm hungry. I bet my face is white too. I show all the signs of being deprived of sleep, food, and peace and quiet. With that in mind, I think I'll close off this little self-portrait. It was fun.

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