Some kind of weird AskMe troll? July 16, 2008 10:37 AM   Subscribe

This AskMe question was posted by "fairlysober", and a pointed response was posted by "prettydrunk". Both joined in the last couple of weeks and only have a 5 posts/comments between the two of them. How did prettydrunk happen upon his "extremely close friend of 10+ years" on a MeFi when he/she has no other method of getting in contact? Coincidence? Trolling? This doesn't pass the smell test.
posted by desjardins to MetaFilter-Related at 10:37 AM (98 comments total)

Link to response by prettydrunk that I forgot to include.
posted by desjardins at 10:37 AM on July 16, 2008


Also, I don't know what's up with the extra letter a's in my post. I am completelysober.
posted by desjardins at 10:39 AM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Huh? He lurked on AskMe, recognized his friend, and created an account riffing off his username. Seems legit to me.
posted by nasreddin at 10:40 AM on July 16, 2008 [4 favorites]


Although the details in that askme are generic and ambiguous enough that it seems a little improbable that he could have used them for identification (except for the fact that he's 29, but a lot of people are 29).
posted by nasreddin at 10:44 AM on July 16, 2008


Yeah, I don't see anything beyond what nasreddin is describing.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 10:44 AM on July 16, 2008


I'm with nasreddin. Certainly not out of the realm of possibility. If they are friends, they might have even discussed AskMe posts together. Knowing that they both lurk on Metafilters, when he saw this one, he figured it must be his friend who decided to de-lurk and get an account. So he got one himself in order to respond. I don't see the weirdness here. And if it if isn't his friend, it's still pretty good advice for the situation.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 10:45 AM on July 16, 2008


I've trolled this site for ages before signing up. If, reading something like that, and strongly believing it was a friend of mine - heck, it would prompt me to shell out the $5 right away.

I'm not sure whether you're insinuating that its (a) the same guy, or (b) a troll making crap up about being a best friend, but does it really matter?
posted by jabberjaw at 10:46 AM on July 16, 2008


It's unusual, but it seems basically legit to me. There are times when people seem to want to play out a dramatic storyline in AskMe for their own amusement, and sometimes with multiple characters, but I don't think this is one - mainly because the story isn't all that dramatic. There have been bunches of "should I call off my engagement" threads on AskMe, so there's no really new, salacious twist to this one that would make me think it was someone having fun with the site, or acting out some odd personal fantasy. Reads okay to me.
posted by Miko at 10:51 AM on July 16, 2008


The situation and person described seem pretty specific, especially if you're in their circle of friends.

Also, prettydrunk makes that point that fairlysober has a problem opening up, so it's not outta the question for PD to respond how FS has reached out, as opposed to simply calling him up.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:03 AM on July 16, 2008


I don't even understand how someone who is pretty drunk can be friends with someone who is fairly sober. One or the other is guaranteed to ruin the party for everyone else.
posted by Astro Zombie at 11:03 AM on July 16, 2008 [5 favorites]


I've trolled this site for ages before signing up.

Just to let you know, "troll" does not mean what you think it does. The term you want is "lurk."
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 11:04 AM on July 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


I've trolled this site for ages before signing up.

Just to let you know, "troll" does not mean what you think it does. The term you want is "lurk."


Maybe jabberjaw meant the "to wander around/move around/look around" aspect of "troll."
posted by amyms at 11:11 AM on July 16, 2008


Supposing for a moment that desjardin's suspicions are true. What would be the point of sockpuppeting in this instance? Who would benefit and how?
posted by Dave Faris at 11:12 AM on July 16, 2008


Supposing for a moment that desjardin's suspicions are true. What would be the point of sockpuppeting in this instance? Who would benefit and how?

That's a really good question.
posted by Astro Zombie 2 at 11:19 AM on July 16, 2008 [4 favorites]


I think jabberjaw meant "trawl."

Either way, this seems legitimate. I'm presuming that mathowie checked if they're posting from different IPs.
posted by Kattullus at 11:19 AM on July 16, 2008


What would be the point of sockpuppeting in this instance? Who would benefit and how?

As a non-crazy person, you really can't fathom why crazy people would do shit.

If desjardins was right, perhaps they wanted to start a huge fight between the two "friends" for drama purposes, something that can spill over into MetaTalk. Or maybe they want to create a story with AskMe as their stage. Crazy doesn't have to make sense
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 11:25 AM on July 16, 2008


this seems legit to me, only because it's really not interesting enough to serve as the basis for a bratty Manufactured Drama/Metafilter Takedown as a featurette on some attention-starved z-list blog. I do think that someday that's going to happen, though. So kudos to desjardins for all the vigilance, I guess.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 11:36 AM on July 16, 2008


Follow the money people! ISN'T OBVIOUS?!!?!?! AM I THE ONLY ONE WHO SEES WHAT'S REALLY GOING ON HERE?!?!?!
posted by blue_beetle at 11:38 AM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


1. Spend $5
2. Spend another $5
3. ?
4. Profit!
posted by mds35 at 11:41 AM on July 16, 2008 [6 favorites]


The Spirit of Oprah moved over the dark waters...
posted by Dizzy at 11:42 AM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


I've been reading mefi near-daily since 2001, had an old account from ~2002 (or whenever signups were opened again), no longer have the email associated with the account - and anyway I wouldn't have used it here because I wanted to remain anonymous so as not to out any of the parties involved.

I registered this name, as others have said, as a riff on the OP's choice of handle.
posted by prettydrunk at 11:48 AM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Oh and also - I used to work with the friend described, and we'd lurk on MeFi every day, discussing threads, etc. The details seem sketchy, yes, but I recognized certain verbal tics. Plus I know my friend has been having second thoughts. And as I said in the post - even if I'm wrong, the info might still be useful to the OP.
posted by prettydrunk at 11:50 AM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Ahhh HA!!
I KNEW it!
posted by Floydd at 11:50 AM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


You mean this isn't going to turn about to be some kind of "oh, SNAP" scam discovery?? Darn.
posted by JanetLand at 11:54 AM on July 16, 2008


Good, I was a little worried that the whole thing was a setup for a sociology experiment.
posted by lukemeister at 12:16 PM on July 16, 2008


Prettydrunk, you've got the wrong guy. Sorry to worry you.
posted by fairlysober at 12:28 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


I don't think most active MeFi commenters realize how much the site is lurked. Of my non-already-MeFite friends, only one has become a member (and hardly ever comments). On the other side of the ratio are eight or ten other people I can think of who read the site with some regularity. If that ratio holds, there are lots and lots of lurkers who read frequently - it's not out of the question that someone would come out of lurkitude to get involved in a conversation that has a chance of having something to do with them.
posted by Miko at 12:28 PM on July 16, 2008


Kattullus: I think jabberjaw meant "trawl."

Nah, I'm betting he's a 'theatrical' gentleman in his dotage who's mistaken MetaFilter for the backstreets of Soho, and every last one of us for trade.
posted by jack_mo at 12:29 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


I don't think most active MeFi commenters realize how much the site is lurked.

*feels self-conscious, suffers performance anxiety*
posted by lukemeister at 12:31 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Well that wasn't very satisfying. Here's my counter-proposal:

desjardins posted this at the behest of the fiancée's heartless real-estate mogul family—who want the wedding to go through at all costs—in the hopes that people would turn on fairlysober and he'd ignore the previously proffered advice.

He's his family's sole heir, see? He stands to inherit the property that currently houses the Sniffling Sad Children orphanage in the north wing, and the Two-Legged Puppies And Kittens Rescue shelter and adoption services in the south wing.

If the wedding happens, the fiancée's family's lawyers will be able to extract the deed during the divorce; thus enabling them to tear it all down to make room for a gleaming new super-mall with an indoor waterpark and 5-star hotel.

There's also a fake ghost involved... somehow.

Now make with the Scooby Snacks.
posted by CKmtl at 12:36 PM on July 16, 2008 [2 favorites]


Oh. This is sad.
posted by lunit at 12:39 PM on July 16, 2008


I would have gotten away with it, too, if it weren't for you Meta-ling kids!
posted by slightlytipsy at 12:40 PM on July 16, 2008 [27 favorites]


Prettydrunk, you've got the wrong guy.

desjardins, you get down outta that clock tower, RIGHT NOW or I'm telling your folks!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:48 PM on July 16, 2008


This back-to-back responses from fairly sobber and pretty drunk (even in here) do seem fishy...but what would be the point anyway?(as noted above) It is a pretty common and interesting situation and the responses of everyone were pretty informative...so even if its fake i really appreciated the reading...who hasnt loved somebody but not enough to marry them? (ok not everyone but you know the geez)

I do think that the advise from PrettyDrunk was on point and probably Fairly Sobber should call the guy anyway even if they dont know each other.
posted by The1andonly at 12:52 PM on July 16, 2008


Dave Faris: Supposing for a moment that desjardin's suspicions are true. What would be the point of sockpuppeting in this instance? Who would benefit and how?

Have you heard of this fad on the internet where people do things for the lulz?
posted by frecklefaerie at 12:55 PM on July 16, 2008


So if you see my Downeaster "Alexa"
And if you work with the rod and the reel
Tell my wife I am trawling trolling lurking Atlantis
And I still have my hands on the wheel.
posted by SpiffyRob at 1:00 PM on July 16, 2008 [4 favorites]


I lurked for four years until someone posted some god awful video that I couldn't help but sign up to condemn.
posted by Burhanistan at 1:01 PM on July 16, 2008


Man am I ever regretting the nick choice now. Anyway, fairlysober: this is totally fucked up, but if you want a random person from the Internet to talk to about this, anonymously and confidentially, send me a mefimail. We're bound in some kind of weird ka-tet now anyway, and I could at least share my friend's story with you - it might help.

Everyone else - sorry to create such confusion and feelings of unease around this. I lurk MeFi and AskMefi obsessively but I never read MetaTalk, maybe should have seen it coming...
posted by prettydrunk at 1:08 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Heh, for a second there I thought you were bicyclefish, Burhanistan, and had gotten banned and then signed up again, but it turns out you were also moved by the awfulness of the Fox News Daily Show clone to sign up and post about its awfulness.

Amusingly enough this is not the first time I confuse Burhanistan with someone else.
posted by Kattullus at 1:12 PM on July 16, 2008


Everyone else - sorry to create such confusion and feelings of unease around this

You've go nothing to apologize for. You've helped reinforce how paranoid some folks are on the internet/MeFi. Or perhaps not paranoid, rather eager for controversy.
posted by ORthey at 1:14 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


J'ACCUSE!!
posted by boo_radley at 1:16 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


"trolling" and "trawling" are somewhat interchangeable when you are talking about slowly cruising around looking for items of interest.

"Trolling is a method of fishing where one or more fishing lines, baited with lures or bait fish, are drawn through the water behind a moving boat...Trolling can be contrasted with trawling, where a net (trawl) is drawn through the water instead of lines. "
posted by Miko at 1:36 PM on July 16, 2008


Damn, CKmtl hit the nail on the head. Busted.
posted by desjardins at 1:44 PM on July 16, 2008


If someone named sortastoned shows up as the fiancée in this whole mess, well I rest my case.
posted by desjardins at 1:45 PM on July 16, 2008


can anyone post a link to an actual scam of the manner suspected here....I would like to read some of the things these people post!
posted by The1andonly at 2:01 PM on July 16, 2008


I was once trolling out in Long Island on my dad's dinky motorboat "The African Queen 7" (ask me what his favorite movie is) and I caught a sand shark, which is just like a regular shark except about the size of a large Italian Combo Hero in Astoria and my friend's dad said if you catch it you have to eat it, so we took it home and awkwardly butchered it and grilled it and ate it, it tasted like piss, two-stroke motor oil and biting into a vitamin E capsule. I still like seafood though.
posted by Divine_Wino at 2:02 PM on July 16, 2008 [4 favorites]


Anyway, that's a pretty taxing username to live up to. I mean, you always have to live up to your username, right? If you call yourself "prettydrunk" you have to be pretty drunk all of the time, that's the rule. I think the Wiki mentions it.
posted by soundofsuburbia at 2:02 PM on July 16, 2008




I don't think most active MeFi commenters realize how much the site is lurked.

[ waves nervously at the fourth wall ]
posted by spiderwire at 2:12 PM on July 16, 2008 [7 favorites]


beep beep
posted by scody at 2:12 PM on July 16, 2008


dammit! Bowie call-and-response foiled by spiderwire's alacrity!
posted by scody at 2:13 PM on July 16, 2008


So, prettydrunk....maybe send a link to the post to that friend of yours?
posted by availablelight at 2:16 PM on July 16, 2008


Divine_Wino "it tasted like piss, two-stroke motor oil and biting into a vitamin E capsule"

I know that everyone is allowed their own little kinks and fetishes, but I'm slightly nauseated that anyone would know the taste of vitamin e capsules...
posted by twine42 at 2:23 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


That was funnier in the confines of my head...
posted by twine42 at 2:23 PM on July 16, 2008


dammit! Bowie call-and-response foiled by spiderwire's alacrity!

Car!

Car!
posted by spiderwire at 2:29 PM on July 16, 2008


Game on!

Game on!
posted by spiderwire at 2:29 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


I'm pretty sure this old Bowie commercial from Japan has the Videodrome Signal embedded. Not that you all haven't all been exposed to that already.

Should Signal be capitalized in Videodrome Signal, or just Videodrome?
posted by Burhanistan at 2:33 PM on July 16, 2008


(the appropriate response to that is "Long live the new flesh!", of course.)
posted by Burhanistan at 2:42 PM on July 16, 2008


Thank you for bringing this matter of earth shaking importance to our collective attention.
posted by y2karl at 2:54 PM on July 16, 2008


Please y2karl. I told you at the last cabal meeting that something like this would occur someday soon. I stressed the need for an emergency plan, regular drills and a comprehensive recovery strategy should the need arise.

But noooooo you wouldn't have any of it. In fact none of you would believe me. And now that it's happened, what do you do? You try to shrug it off with a sarcastic quip.

I don't want to say I told you so... but... well.

usual cabal disclaimer applies
posted by eyeballkid at 3:03 PM on July 16, 2008


I know that everyone is allowed their own little kinks and fetishes, but I'm slightly nauseated that anyone would know the taste of vitamin e capsules...

There was an early incident where my hippie mom switched me from chewables to adult vitamins. Needless to say I reflexively vomit within the first few bars of Aqualung.
posted by Divine_Wino at 3:39 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Some people I've never met are having sex right now
Or are planning to have sex reeeally soon.
Far away a donkey brays
I'm staring down the moon.
posted by Dizzy at 3:42 PM on July 16, 2008


I've trolled this site for ages

I think jabberjaw meant "trawl."


you say troll
and I say trawl
you say droll
me too, but with a drawl
if you go down to the shoal
be sure to wear a shawl
but if boll weevil eat your cotton boll
you gonna cry and bawl.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:30 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


...the last cabal meeting...

Love you like cabal and chain.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 4:31 PM on July 16, 2008


Oh MAN, did I pick the right time to write a Boll Weevil song!
posted by Astro Zombie at 4:45 PM on July 16, 2008


I was once trolling out in Long Island on my dad's dinky motorboat "The African Queen 7" (ask me what his favorite movie is) and I caught a sand shark, which is just like a regular shark except about the size of a large Italian Combo Hero in Astoria and my friend's dad said if you catch it you have to eat it, so we took it home and awkwardly butchered it and grilled it and ate it, it tasted like piss, two-stroke motor oil and biting into a vitamin E capsule. I still like seafood though.

I was once trolling out on MetaFilter on my work computer "Lumbergh", and I caught some bland snark, which is like regular snark only less creative and so obvious as to render it laughable. I still like the internets though.
posted by rooftop secrets at 4:50 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


has anyone bought the username 'mildlyhungover,' or 'i'mnotdrunkyoutakethatbackyoufucker..imsorry' yet? I figure it's just a matter of time.
posted by jonmc at 4:54 PM on July 16, 2008


"and I caught a sand shark, which is just like a regular shark except about the size of a large Italian Combo Hero in Astoria and my friend's dad said if you catch it you have to eat it,"

You're lucky it wasn't a mudshark. If you catch one of those, you have to fuck it.
posted by klangklangston at 4:57 PM on July 16, 2008 [5 favorites]


availablelight: I sent it to him a link to the thread a full 24 hours before posting to it, and even heard back from him... his response was a major reason for posting to the thread in the first place.
posted by prettydrunk at 6:00 PM on July 16, 2008


You know, I was recently reading an article by Madison Smart Bell set in Baltimore, where he talks about a martial arts class he took where one of his classmates is West Indian man. They get to talking about cooking seafood and Bell's classmate says that he likes to use 'lots of obeah seasoning.' Convinced that this is some exotic voodoo spiceblend, Bell pesters the guy for more info, until he says, 'You can buy it in the supermarket, in a little tin.'

I tell you this story because when I read the 'bland snark' comment above I though of saying that a little Old Bay would make it tasty, and that made me think of this story. My synapses are like bumper cars.
posted by jonmc at 6:11 PM on July 16, 2008


But unlucky that it wasn't a TV shark, since if you catch one of those, you only have to jump it.
posted by birdsquared at 6:47 PM on July 16, 2008


My synapses are like bumper cars.

They're never damaged, no matter how often you get smashed?
posted by UbuRoivas at 6:51 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Yes. and if you give me a quarter, you can ride them.
posted by jonmc at 6:53 PM on July 16, 2008


That's a good price for a bit of carnival knowledge.
posted by UbuRoivas at 7:03 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


The calliope and cotton candy are on the house.
posted by jonmc at 7:11 PM on July 16, 2008


I'm doing the "lo-sugar" thing, sorry.

Do you have any Liver?
posted by Dizzy at 7:24 PM on July 16, 2008


no, it's OK-- I saw it on Alton last month.

really.
posted by Dizzy at 7:25 PM on July 16, 2008


Yuck! The piano smells like a beer.
posted by octobersurprise at 7:26 PM on July 16, 2008


put some bread in my jar. by the way, what am I doing here?
posted by jonmc at 7:30 PM on July 16, 2008


what am I doing here?

you're hear to read that i just got myself a third row centre ticket to see Patti Smith at the Sydney Opera House.

*turns cartwheels*
posted by UbuRoivas at 7:36 PM on July 16, 2008


actually, make that second row.

for some reason, they don't start counting at A.
posted by UbuRoivas at 7:40 PM on July 16, 2008


Shout-out to Lenny Kaye (and Patti, too) for me.
posted by jonmc at 7:47 PM on July 16, 2008


for some reason, they don't start counting at A.

Dingos ate the first row.

(Yes, aye'm acyewzing yew of muhduhrin' the fuhst raow.)
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:04 PM on July 16, 2008


I totally meant "troll" as in I've had two account perma-banned here. Booyah!

Actually, I meant "troll" as in I don't regularly associate words I use in normal conversation with their internet-meaning, even when I use them on the internet.

Like if I say "I hacked the web" it is probably spider-related and icky.
posted by jabberjaw at 9:06 PM on July 16, 2008 [1 favorite]


Man, I think they're both desjardins' sockpuppets.
posted by EatTheWeak at 9:45 PM on July 16, 2008


What an unlikely thread to have two Billy Joel references.

Better make it three!

Don't go trolling, to catch a fishy
You never caught a shark before
Don't imagine you're fairly sober
And I don't flag you anymore
I wouldn't flameout in times of trouble
Your pony couldn't come this far
I took MeTas, I'll take the podcasts
I'll ban you just the way you are.
posted by SpiffyRob at 7:04 AM on July 17, 2008 [1 favorite]


Land Shark Candygram...
posted by quin at 7:59 AM on July 17, 2008


Yuck! The piano smells like a beer.

No, no. It sounds like a carnival. The microphone smells like a beer.
posted by Dave Faris at 2:39 PM on July 17, 2008


(ugh. One of these days, I'll be clever, and actually read what the rest of you write before posting.)
posted by Dave Faris at 2:45 PM on July 17, 2008


Wait: Patti Smith's on tour?
posted by trip and a half at 3:20 PM on July 17, 2008


Wait: Patti Smith smells like a beer?
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:37 PM on July 17, 2008


Nah, she smells like horses.

horses, horses, horses
coming in in all directions
white shining silver studs with their nose in flames,

She smelled like horses, horses, horses, horses...

Well, you get the idea. The thing is, she really did know how to bony maroney back in the day. Pony too.
posted by quin at 9:05 PM on July 17, 2008


her microphone always smelled suspicious
posted by UbuRoivas at 3:01 AM on July 18, 2008


Metafilter: the whole thing was a setup for a sociology experiment.
posted by cortex (staff) at 1:49 PM on July 21, 2008


Metafilter: the whole thing was a setup for a sociology experiment.

The Stanford Troll Experiment...
posted by y2karl at 11:02 AM on July 24, 2008


Metatalk callout: "Who is this s_milgram guy and why does he keep posting these manipulative askmes?"
posted by cortex (staff) at 11:07 AM on July 24, 2008 [1 favorite]


*ZAP*
posted by y2karl at 11:12 AM on July 24, 2008


*ZAP*

again! push it again!
posted by spiderwire at 7:20 PM on July 24, 2008


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