Identity (Day 77)

I wonder if you have any idea who I am.

Obviously, you know my name — or at least the name you know me by. (See how I did that: sowing seeds of doubt right from the start? You can’t be too careful.) But what can a name really tell you? It gives you something to Google, of course. But what then? Even after you sift through all he dross, whatever you get is only information, and the various sources will have to be vetted, their reliability tested and appraised. And even if you judge the sources to be accurate, information is always open to interpretation.

And all that is only matching the name you have for me. It is just as likely that, if I have anything — shall we say unsavory? — in my personal history, I will have taken pains to have made that part of someone else’s personal history already: someone I used to be. Names are so easily changed, dead infants’ Social Security Numbers so easily acquired; really it is a wonder to me that anybody is still who they started out as. But then, not everybody lives as colorful a life as I might have.

If I was not who you think.

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