A Brief Encounter

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 A secret account.

Trying to get noticed.

Won’t take no for an answer.

Persistent messages.

Finally chatting.

A great rapport.

Built slowly over months.

Shared secrets.

Trusting too easily.

A mid-life crisis?

A request for a lunch date.

A meeting at a station.

A pleasant surprise.

Can it be the same person?

An afternoon of culture.

Matchstick men and dogs.

A definite spark.

A reluctant goodbye.

A flurry of messages.

A poem at dawn.

Too good to be true?

Bombarded with messages.

Made to feel special.

Phone calls galore.

Another meeting planned.

Statues at the beach.

Another poem.

Showered with messages.

Made to feel wonderful.

Secret meeting in a park.

Swamped with messages.

‘I can’t wait to see you’.

Poems abound.

False promises made.

An illicit overnight stay.

Full of passion.

A few revelations.

Back to reality.

Altered behaviour?

A notch on the bedpost?

Perhaps it’s imagined.

Fewer messages.

Another meeting dawns.

Seems enthusiastic.

But a bombshell is dropped.

Something has happened.

A peculiar thing.

Really hard to believe.

A stressful week follows.

Then ‘ I still want to see you’

But something feels wrong.

Emotions take over.

Messages aplenty.

Talking me round.

An afternoon of lust.

But something is missing.

Left alone to travel home.

No message that evening.

Feeling used and angry.

12 hours later.

‘Did you get home ok?’

Too late really.

To ask that question.

Messages dwindle.

Excuses made.

Christmas comes.

New Year passes.

Minimal contact.

Not a priority.

Conscious not to chase.

But a blunt question asked.

‘Yes, I still feel the same’.

Not convinced.

A meeting planned.

Not sure how I feel.

Needn’t have worried.

Cancelled that day.

Not surprised.

Contact feels forced.

This needs to end.

Blunt question again.

Do you want to continue?

‘I can’t wait to see you’.

A fool for believing.

Follow your instincts.

A new date is made.

But to no avail.

Two days later.

Dropped.

From a height.

Excuses.

Feeling stupid.

For trusting and believing.

And not giving up.

Allowing such treatment.

Left wondering who the biggest fool is.

Secret Twitter Accounts: A Modern Mid-Life Crisis?

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One thing that has struck me since I have been using Twitter is the number of ‘secret accounts’ that are out there. The definition of secret presumably being that the ‘other half’ doesn’t know about it. It would appear that we are all looking for something more; a new and exciting dimension to our everyday lives. ‘Humdrum’ was a term used by a fellow secret account holder to sum up their life.

Some of you may remember a BBC sit-com called Butterflies, from the late seventies, in which Ria Parkinson, a 40-something middle-class housewife, wanted to make her mundane life more exciting and formed a secret relationship with Leonard, a successful, divorced businessman. The relationship remained innocent and was never consummated, despite an obvious desire by both parties to have sex. Ria was married to Ben, a dentist, who never knew of Ria’s mid-life crisis, or her relationship with Leonard.

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To me, the themes that run through Butterflies have an awful lot in common with the secret accounts of Twitter; apart from the fact that Leonard probably never gave Ria a picture of his cock, unless he went to the trouble of getting a roll of film developed by Truprint.

We seem to be looking for fun, passion and excitement; a phrase which a few Twitter friends will have heard me use before. Our relationships must be missing something fundamental if we can share our innermost thoughts, secrets and desires with virtual strangers, yet our partners remain oblivious to the people we long to be.

Perhaps it’s the thrill of doing something illicit and having a second ‘virtual’ life/dirty secret. Maybe it’s reaching a certain age, when our own mortality is getting closer. We can all no doubt remember the excitement of setting up an account and getting those first few followers. But also quickly realising that a good proportion of Twitter has a secret account, and that there are similarities between many marriages in terms of lack of sex, attention and affection. Or is it just a bit of harmless fun? After all, we only live once.

Twitter seems to provide a medium for us all to be the person we secretly wish to be.  I am in my forties and was acutely aware that if I didn’t take the plunge and reveal my hidden desires and true personality, and say and do things that I may not have the courage, or chance, to do in real life, then I might never do so. A mid-life crisis maybe? Some people portray an image of being a ‘playboy’ or a ‘serial shagger’, yet in reality, they are the complete opposite and would run a mile given the opportunity to be the person they pretend to be online.

It’s interesting to wonder how many online secret friendships remain on a virtual level and technically innocent in nature, like Ria and Leonard. But is that enough for us, and will it satisfy any impending mid-life crisis?  Or will meeting our Twitter crush be an anti-climax and shatter the illusion we have of that person?

None of us are in a position to judge each other for the reasons behind our secret accounts. We are all outside looking in and don’t know the circumstances of other people’s lives. Only the parties in a relationship know what goes on behind closed doors. But, of course, you never really know who you’re talking to on Twitter; could our partners have a secret account too?!