I feel bad for the people who spend so much time working on their IM profile that it becomes a pathetic last ditch effort at a free personal ad. "Single white male gets turned on by long walks on the beach, Harry Belafonte, and people typing 'lol.'" Sometimes, I'll ask people what their IM name is, and they'll tell me they don't have one because they don't have a computer. But sometimes people ask me what an IM name is. What? How can anyone be so oblivious to pop culture? AOL has invaded our society so much that they even named Sleepless in Seattle II after it. The dumbest commercial I've ever seen is for AOL. The guy says "My friend said, 'Try AOL.' I said, 'Why, I already have a computer.'" Yeah, genious, that's the point. Is the same guy that needs directions on toothpaste and shampoo? "Rinse AND repeat? You sure?" Why do some people have thirty-two numbers in their screenname? I bet they thought it was really cool until they tried telling people what it was. "Bob30974563. That's B-o-b, 3-0-9-7-4
" Yeah, I can just call you your phone number is easier to remember. Some people get really offended if they get blocked, even by someone they hate. Someone can hang up the phone when you call, totally ignore you on the street, and never answer your e-mails. But the second they prevent you from sending them a little yellow smiley face, it's personal. Like this column? Then buy the book!