c o n v e r g e n c e:
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WAT BANG PHRA by Baxter Jackson

WAT BANG PHRA by Baxter Jackson

by Jeannette Garrett

I really don't think its cyberstalking, if all I'm doing is following him on Twitter. And I'm not even one of his official 37K followers in that I have not taken a photo of myself and registered a handle. I don't need my face showing or my name or even a fake face or a fake name, which I understand can, unfortunately, be ascertained with relative ease, or certainly with a court order. I just Google him and click on the link that says       —————       —————       Twitter. It's out there for the public to see, to read. He wants people to read it. I read it.

And yes, because I use Google to check his Twitter account, I occasionally — only when they're new — click on the links to see what he's up to, what's being said about him, written about him. I think that's normal. Just a natural curiosity. And once again, it's what anyone on the internet can see.

I have "friended" him on Facebook. Or, more accurately, a fan with the Ralph Lauren-looking model-sounding name "Sloane" has "friended" him. And who has really had to work hard to suppress her disgust at the frolicking vacation shots, the week-ends at home out in the yard beaming happily and healthily photos. As opposed to Google, I try to stay away, for my own good, as much as I can, from his Facebook page, no more than a dozen views a day.

Did I mention that some of the Google links lead you to YouTube? Which is a gold mine. You can watch entire interviews, so you can see his dimples when he smiles, the way he touches his leg when he's trying to come up with the right word, his dry sense of humor, how freakin' smart he is. You can see the three-dimensional man.

It is not my fault if sometimes when I'm Googling him one of those ads, I guess they are, pops up and asks — tells me — that such and such records can be found about       —————       —————.       Inform-ation like phone number, criminal background, driving record. I did not go searching for that. It just presented itself to me. It popped up. And just a word to the wise. They may say "Free Record Search," but that's a lie. It doesn't cost a ton or anything, but it's not free. (By the way, do you have any idea how easy it is to get a credit card under a different name to pay for those records? Getting the post office box took longer and cost more, but it was worth it.)

While he doesn't have a criminal history (no surprise), he or his household (how I hate that word) does have a land line. Who still has a land line anymore? In case of emergency? I don't know. I do know that unlike hard lines, cell phone numbers are next to impossible to get. Is it possible? And the good thing with land numbers is you can get an address.

It turns out he and "the soon to be extraneous one," aka his wife, own a home in the Bayou Bend neighborhood. Makes sense. Convenient to his work. From the Google Earth picture it's a two-story colonial set on about half an acre with a huge swimming pool. There are some woods out back, and a circular driveway hidden behind some, what looks like oleanders? Hibiscus? The nearest house appears to be a quarter mile away. That is a good distance away, a safe distance away.

However, I think it's important to know, for example, the square footage of the house, the number of bedrooms, etc., just to be on the safe side. When somebody runs in a house — if it gets to that — you'd like to know how many possible hiding places there are. According to the Appraisal District records, it's 3,562 square feet, four bedrooms, four and a half baths. Valued at $1.47 million.

Wikipedia says he has two children. No indication of age (failing of Wikipedia). From Facebook photos though I know they're school age, elementary, kindergarten at the earliest. It does say how old she is, 37. Only had a few good years left anyway, ha ha. From some of his tweets, or was it interviews, I already know she doesn't work. She's his "rock." He's so busy he relies on her as the heart of the family. Ugh. Ugh again. I wonder how long he'll be off Twitter? I wonder what his first tweet, after an appropriate absence, will be? All I know is, I'll be waiting anxiously to follow it.


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