Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The return of the penpal stalker

As some of you may recall, out of the blue earlier this year, I received an email from an Iranian penpal I had not been in contact with for around 13 years. Rather than being excited by this unexpected reconnection, several factor set off my creep radar, and led to my decision to simply not respond.


... guess who's back?

Apparently, my lack of response in one arena did not dissuade him, and he added me as a friend on Facebook... and send me the exact same email.

Not only does this email refer to googling me in the past, plans to call me, and the fact that he still has my letters (and photo!), it also contains details that clearly could not be obtain from a public Facebook profile, further clarifying the fact that he has searched for information for me from multiple sites. He even takes a guess as to what month I started my PhD!

And the bastard called me chubby again. 

He signed the email "still your friend"-- based on what? A total of maybe four or five letters from a 13 year old girl writing about her favourite food and why she likes cats?

I felt a little guilty over not responding to his first email, but his persistence made me feel reassured about following my gut instinct. So this time around, I blocked him.

I say this pretending as though I have strength of convictions, as though it didn't take a series of email interactions with the Duke in which he instructed me to "grow a pair" (which I chose to not take literally) for me to gather the force to click that button.

I have a really hard time being mean. In fact, over the past few weeks, I've been told a number of times that I'm too nice and need lessons in meanness. I talk to the oddballs and drunkards on the bus when I'd rather stare out the window. I am nearly incapable of telling a sleazy guy to leave me alone before the second in which he makes his intentions explicit, and thus I can safely turn him down.* I have a strange hang-up about needing people to like me, even if I can't stand to be around them. As such, blocking my random childhood penpal is a sadly significant moment of strength for me.

* This is not to say I don't have a line, as demonstrated by my lightning quick fuse and epic slew of profanities when some old man told me he was looking down the back of my pants to see my panties, or the time I shoved a huge guy for sexually harassing the crap out of a friend. I just have a hard time when I don't think someone's intentions are malicious.

41 comments:

Maxie said...

um CREEPY. I say block him immediately.

Essentially Me said...

Weird weird weird.

poodlegoose said...

I am right there with you. My fiance calls me the doormat. Which also applies to the fact that I am too nice to stupids, as well as the fact that I allow people to walk all over me.

And I used to have multiple penpals back in the day. But uh, I don't have the same email address I used to. Good one for blocking him, though. Ehhh, a little sketch, if you ask me. (That or a tad pathetic) (or both.)

Psych-o by now said...

Me too!!! That is how I ended up with so many Facebook stalkers.

Jamie said...

Yeah this guy definitely sounds like a creep!

Larissa said...

If your going to Google-stalk, at least hide that fact, Pen Pal Dude.

Alexa said...

whoa, that is a bit ridiculous/creepy. you did the right thing for sure.

Crushed said...

I remember this actually..

I can understand why you didn't take thias decision lightly, it must cut a little at some point. Because there is always the suspicion he might just be a bit sad and lonely as opposed to mad and freaky.

But you're right; best to be on the safe side.

I'm afraid I have much less patience with the drunks and oddballs.

chasinglibby said...

kudos to you, girlfriend.
and gah with the chubby. i hate when people say that! it's like...stop being so wishy washy! haha

eric1313 said...

And the bastard called me chubby again.

wow...

And he expected a positive response?

Treasuring somebody's letters or photos are one thing--IF you dated that person or shared an intense friendship with them. But yeah, that's just weird.

He probably tells his friends he has a chubby North American girlfriend!

Not that you are chubby.

I of course have no clue.

This bit of writing proves I'm clueless...

I'm gone before the foot goes any deeper into my mouth.

Glad to see ya again, my friend.

Peace out

Ant said...

Surely if you're chubby there would be enough material for a pair already, negating the need to grow some...

Though that depends on a pair of what exactly?

If it's a pair of gonads then I think our Iranian friend won't quite be as interested anymore. Though he's probably just after a visa - he does seem to be magnanimously overlooking your (alleged) chubbiness to still be your friend.

Is this comment annoying yet?

I like it when girls are mean.

C'mon, be mean!

*Pushes Princess*

C'mon chubmeister, what you gonna do about it?

:-)

Brett said...

Haven't you looked up old boyfriend on the net? but then to follow it up is a bit strange.

dmb5_libra said...

skeevy!!! this is why the internet is good and yet bad.

i feel you on the nice thing...i am the same way.

lspoon said...

I'd be creeped out too. Though honestly he probably has absolutely nothing better to do than stalk you and possibly other pen pals from his past.

Adorably Bitter said...

I do assume he is staying on a different continent than you, right? So in that case it would not be too much of a problem. You don't even have to tell him to sod off, you can just intentionally systematically block him out.

Or, you could try to write him an 8-page letter (or rather e-mail) about cultural differences. This is how I got rid of a Turkish admirer/stalker once. Tee hee!

Nilsa S. said...

You made the right move. Unless you ever had intentions of returning this guy's email, he would continue to haunt you - and you certainly don't deserve that. Here's hoping life goes back to normalcy again.

Z said...

You did the right thing. But, yeah, I understand the "too nice" thing...

benjibopper said...

there's a lot to be said for kindness, but, as a little known band called Monkey Trial once sang, 'we'd have made it to the door if we'd trusted out instincts, what do you think they're for?'

Deutlich said...

I'm gonna have to side with Duke on this one

distracted spunk said...

I too am of the "No block" policy. I still haven't blocked my high school boyfriend who IMs me once every few months to apologize for his asshole behavior and ask if I'd ever get back together with him. (That's a no.)

The only person I've ever successfully blocked was my crazy Facebook stalker. It just seems so impolite. As though...you're letting them win, because you can't pose indifference.

Dabby said...

Ugh. There is never an excuse for Chubby-calling-name-flinging. BLOCK!

ToughGirl101 said...

Hell yes! Go you! good job! that guyw as a creep.

the almost right word said...

My question is simple: Why be nice to someone who has called you "chubby" more than once???

Paula said...

He clearly doesn't take the hint, but then due to the stalker tendencies, I'd be reluctant to advise you to be blunt and tell him to go screw himself. Poor you!!!

Sheila said...

Very Creepy! My sister is also the type that has a hard time being mean, but over the years, I have helped her be less "mousey" (even though she's the big sister).

Princess Pointful said...

Is it bad that I feel the need to state the fact that I am not chubby?
I tried to let that fact slide in the post... but, dammit, I'm not! I may weigh more than when I was 13, and I may have those secret jiggly bits, but I wear a f-ing size Small!

So@24 said...

You're as cooooooold as ice!

JessWrites said...

I had a penpal when I was like 12 or 13 too. But she was from Pennsylvania and she never facebooked me 10 years later. Lucky me.

Jenn said...

What can I say that hasn't already been said?

Pancake.

There you go.

Bayjb said...

That is really creepy. And totally unfair for him to call you chubby. I'll punch him in the face.

Katelin said...

okay that is just bizarre. good thing you blocked him, phew.

Dan Mega said...

Awesome, you have a stalker! Can I be your FB stalker?

Dexter Colt said...

Blocking is a kindness. You could responded with a "what the hell is going through your head" type of message. You allow him to save face. Now, if he manages to contact you again...hit him with both barrels.

Daisy said...

Ooh! Congrats!!! I was really proud of myself the first time I hit the "ignore" button and even prouder the day I hit the "block" button as well. I know there are people out there who don't feel a pang of guilt when they ignore, ignore, ignore but I am not one of them. In fact, I also get lectures on being too nice... which is why I now read a lot of self-help books. :)

SMARTBuddy said...

You blocked me?!...



...Thats funny, right! Yeah just click those weridos out of your life - Facebook is full of em!

eric1313 said...

Princess, no it's not bad!

You know me: have curves, will be appreciated.

And I think I speak for most every guy on this page when I say that.

I was just trying to be funny...

:::Hangs head in sorrow:::

Mrs4444 said...

I used to have this affliction; it once led to a date rape, in fact. (Sorry if that's TMI!!) However, over the years, I have "grown some," and I haven't seen a glimpse "too nice" in years. When we were in CA, this annoying guy (who probably had Asperger's Syndrome) kept bothering me and one of my nieces in a bar. It got to the point where I just point blank said to him, "You need to get away from us. We do not want to talk to you. Now GO AWAY." So liberating! I'm so impressed that you went with your gut; you're my hero!

eric1313 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Yoda said...

Back from where he's from, being chubby is actually a good thing!

It means that you/your family is doing well enough in life so as to afford food on a regular basis and you don't have to work menial jobs, and can thus put on weight.

Wait, must clarify -- *I* am not calling you chubby, merely pointing out why he may have made that up!!

Kayleigh said...

I'm glad you blocked him. I too have trouble being mean when the opportunity calls for it. I don't know...it's like I feel like I still have to be polite even after someone just creeped on me or whatever. I don't know. Every once in awhile the bitchiness comes out, and it feels good. I was hit on repeatedly the other week in a club, and after refusing the guy like 5 times, he had the audacity to GRAB MY ARM and yank me back towards him as I started to walk away. I shoved him so hard that he fell down.

No apologies there, haha.

But- Iranian dude sounds like a creepster. I'm glad you blocked him too. I know it seems to remote and far away, but you never know with some people. And I almost never take the "high road" with ending communication with someone. My solution is to block them, never pick up their calls, and ignore them until they get the hint.

Classy, I know.

the frog princess said...

I think we all have that need for people to like us. As a social species, I consider it a survival instinct. If someone likes you, there's less likelihood that they'll burn your village, steal your crops, and enslave your family... right?

That being said, stalker Iranian pen pal definitely sounds a bit creepy. Better safe than sorry.

After all. He can't burn your village if he can't find it. Right? Right.