I told her I thought I knew why she contacted me and she replied by sending a URL. He listed his age as 10 years younger than mine and his height three inches taller. His personality was inexplicably listed as “Athletic.” I felt flattered. I felt like someone had broken into my home, but I didn’t know what he had touched or stolen, other than my face.
It was not just one man, but many who had robbed me of my face. But the most common link to my picture was one that led back to me, the real me, the one who had been writing about his life and posting it online, the one who shared intimate details with a world of strangers on his blog, “The Authentic Life.” The one, who 10 years ago, before the TV series and the term catfish even existed, came out as gay to his wife in the punchline of all American tales — a Walmart. I chose a photograph of myself that was truthful, and the only one I thought flattering. In it, I am standing in a church parking lot, wearing a white shirt with the sleeves rolled up and a clean-shaven, pensive look.
After my make-believe world fell apart and my wife and I divorced, she packed up our daughters and moved 700 miles away. It was taken six months before our small family disintegrated.
I would have considered it spam, but it was too well written and there were no links for erectile dysfunction pills.
She read my blog, she looked at my pictures and she was devastated.
Marisa, from her diminutive angle, captured someone who appeared solid, tall and ready to move forward.