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You probably Haven't Heard of Me
by George Huntington

 

You probably haven’t heard of me and there is a reason for that. I have learnt to value my privacy. In this day and age this is a difficult thing. In the old days, people wanted to become famous purely for the sake of fame itself. I have a better reason. Let me explain.

I was a normal person before it happened. Well, mostly normal. I struggled with my weight for a long time. My parents put it down to genetics but to be honest a lot of the time its exercise. You try going for a run or to the gym or pool with a hundred eyes on you. Or watching everyone laugh in your face when you suggest joining at team. No, so I was pretty big, but I am not here to make excuses for that.

As I say, I was average apart from my size, which made middle school miserable. Does anyone have a happy middle school though? I can’t say I’ve met anyone who has. I progressed happily through the school system and went onto college which is where I started to have problems again.

My roommate and I were different and didn’t really see eye to eye. In fact, we couldn’t have been more different; as you know, I never took to sports. My roommate on the other hand never took to something else. Tensions would build as they had friends over for pregaming before drunken adventures. Whilst they were here, the discussions ranged from Greek houses to making unsubtle jibes at me and my appearance which I endured with a more than noble spirit given the circumstances. Turning the other cheek et cetera.

The crown on this was the incident which has caused me so much misery hence. In the lead up to Spring Break, everything tended to wind down a bit. The workload was relaxed and we found ourselves having more time to do things. For college students this meant more time to party. Despite my roommate’s best efforts, I did have a wide circle of friends. Sadly this wasn’t to last. Someone I knew was throwing a sprawling party across campus and everyone who was anyone was going to be there. More than enough for me to turn up, at least.

I was never really sure how it happened exactly. Whilst I will be the first to admit I was not a desirable shape or at all attractive, I met someone at that party. We really hit it off. One thing led to another and I brought them back to my room and here is where the problems began.

I had never had sex before. This person understood and made it easy for me, they were kind. We nuzzled drunkenly on the bed before removing our clothes and getting down to it. I was excited to be losing my virginity, though I hadn’t pictured it happening like this. Actually, I don’t think I had pictured it at all. Bare skin touched skin as we kissed. Then there was thrusting. It was right at the moment of orgasm, my first from another person, that the door of my room burst open.

There stood my roommate and my roommate’s friends. One of them held a phone and was recording the whole thing. Just as the door opened I made the weirdest sounding cry of passion and the bed broke. One of the legs just straight up gave way and we both juddered into the mattress.

In the aftermath I was left alone on the broken bed, confused and my eyes stinging with tears. What had just happened? Before my partner fled I made a pathetic attempt to cover myself and threw everything at them within arms reach, screaming and crying all the while.

Having seen the video after (it was a long time after that I could bear to watch it) my partner’s face can’t be seen; they are completely anonymous. I wander if they’d been put up to it by my roommate, but it explained a few things. The pixelated footage captures the moans I make while making love (later compared to whalesong) and the awful skin on skin slapping sound of love-handles, spare tyres, belly, sagging tits, back fat, you name it. Then the door opens and I can’t bear to describe it any further. Safe to say it was not my finest hour.

The video went viral overnight, complete with Discovery Channel style narrations. I had my phone switched off for a full two weeks. I had to delete Facebook because everyone would link me the video and not stop talking about it. I cut classes because of the whispering and the stares. When I caught people on campus wearing t-shirts of it I stopped leaving my room. My bed even. The footage and images from it went up in all the usual places; 4chan, Reddit, Tumblr, YouTube, etc. It felt like I would never hear the end of it. My worst moment caught for 7 billion strangers to see. I considered suicide and fortunately got counselling.

By the end of the year I had dropped out and gone home. My parents understood. We never spoke directly about the video, but when I looked them in the eye I saw that even they had seen it, perhaps out of curiosity. I managed to find a job where I could work from home and in the intervening period I lost the weight which had brought me fame. Things were looking up, but it didn’t feel like it and I was still a recluse, even from my friends and family. Whenever I Googled my name (which I did daily now) the video was still there in some format or another. People had written articles on it. Everyone was wondering where I had disappeared to. I dreaded to be found. Every time I stepped outside I loathed it in case I should be recognised. It never happened, in part due to shedding all the fat, but it was my phobia all the same. Something had to be done.

 

I was overjoyed to hear that Google would be enacting a ‘right to be forgotten policy’ shortly over here. There was only one catch; in order to request this measure for yourself, you had to be a celebrity. You had to attain fame and not the sort that I had already received. For a moment I was downcast, but then I knew exactly what I had to do.

Why not write a story of the terrible event? If I were to get it published that would give me the kind of celebrity required for my right to be forgotten.

It may seem self-defeating of my to attempt to further circulate the material which has caused me so much trouble. But at this point I felt as though I had nothing to lose. Plenty of people had had fun and gain at my expense; I didn’t see why I shouldn’t join their ranks if it got me what I desired most. If I were famous enough, the search engine would erase me entirely, that was how it worked.

So I got what I wanted. By now with everyone having seen the video my side of the story was instantly taken up. There was a brief period where amateur reporters dogged my every step and I had to treble my efforts to remain unseen. But the celebrity it brought me was sufficient for Google. Two and a half years after the video was first put on YouTube, two months after I surfaced to the public again, I got what I wished for and life has never been better. I earned my right to be forgotten. Everything was removed. I’m sure, if you tried hard enough, you could still find things scattered here and there, but if searching my name returned no results, that was good enough for me. It was over, life was normal again. And that’s why you probably haven’t heard of me.

 

 

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