The computer in front of me is a rental. My dad, a chemistry teacher, borrowed it from school. It is white and new and a major improvement from the beige Apple with the black and green screen that I play Frogger on. I love it.
I turn on the modem that sits above the printer. I click the button to log on to AOL and listen to the familiar and long beeping sound of the dial up. I'm so happy we just got a new phone line for the internet last week because I don't have to worry anymore that my mom will miss an important phone call.
Once I'm online, I look up Hanson fan websites. I love Hanson. I've loved them since 1997, and let me tell you that I still love them today (actually, MMMBop was playing in Toys R Us today when I went to buy T the Power Ranger car, and I stood in the video aisle and sang it-out loud-and I didn't care that other people looked at me like I had 10 heads).
School is really rough for me. I get bullied a lot and I really have no friends. I also just found out I needed glasses, and they are pink and ugly, and I only wore them in one class and got so made fun of so much I stopped. It's so hard for me to see the board to take notes, and all the squinting I need to do gives me a headache (but I learned to write fast-everything the teacher said, and that has served me well in life).
I am learning HTML so I can have my own fan site. I spend hours every day reading about Hanson, and finding all the fan stories I can. I adore them, and I can't wait to write my own (And I still love writing, although I no longer know any HTML and I am awful with computers now-my boyfriend had to set up most of this blog for me, and I used the template).
This is the only part of the day that I'm happy. I can be in my own world. I get home, sneak some alcohol to try and forget the pain of school, and hop online until my parents get home (they were both teachers). I'm alone in my basement, but being online brings me together with other people who like the same things I do. I don't get made fun of by them. We have a bond with each other, even though we've never met, and probably never will.
The internet has opened up a whole new world to me, and I feel less left out. I can finally meet people who have no preconceived notions about me and won't judge me like the people at school. I have finally found my sanctuary.
This post was written in response to this week's RemembeRED prompt from Write on Edge.
We want you to recall those early memories of being online.
But there are two catches:
Please do not use the phrase “I remember…”
Also? No laundry lists. Try to focus on one small memory and share that with us. Tell us how it impacted your life and what it meant for you.