Cranky Cuss

Cranky Cuss
Ossining, New York, United States
February 28
I'm currently semi-retired after 23 years in a corporate environment. My motto: The conventional wisdom has too much convention, not enough wisdom. Corollary: Even Einstein was wrong sometimes, and you're not Einstein.


NOVEMBER 12, 2011 4:32PM

I Googled Myself and Didn't Go Blind

Rate: 35 Flag




I'm inside and the shades are drawn

I've got my computer's on

I'm getting off on googling me (googling me!)

    - "Vanity Surfin'," Jesus H. Christ and the Four Hornsmen of the Apocalypse  



Once you hit “publish,” you lose control of your posts.


I learned that 18 months ago when I Googled myself for the first time – well, my nom de plume, not my all-too-common real name – and was startled at some of the strange locations where links to one’s writing turned up. There may be a logical reason why a post would go from Point A to Point B, but when you see it appearing at Point Z, your only response is: WTF? 


A conversation I had at the OS meet-up / Beth Mann birthday bash last night prompted me to do it again.  And the results are just as strange.


Curiously, I got a very different set of search results from Yahoo and Google. Yahoo’s very first result returned was not only my OS blog, but it began with the words “Internet Explorer cannot display the webpage.”  You see, everybody knows about OS!   By contrast, Google alone reconnected me to a YouTube video of a song Kit Duncan recorded for me, and less delightfully, reconnected me to a non-OS blog that badmouthed me.  * Sniff * I have feelings too!


While Yahoo linked to some of my Amazon book reviews, only Google returned my Amazon profile in French!  Or should I say, my “profil pour commentaires.”


I learned that just mentioning someone’s name in a post can have consequences.  For example, a brief discussion of the late Patty Donohue, lead singer of the Waitresses, and a post about the MIA singer Bobbie Gentry ended up connected to name search sites. I was tickled that one of the fictional porn names I created, Ivana Johnson, led to a Wiki name page.  What, nobody’s naming their kids Will N. Dowd or Vagina Lollabrigida?  Come on, America, use your imagination!


Please do not Google my name and Scarlett Johansson’s at the same time.  Not only is my pathetic unrequited crush embarrassing to read in black and white, but I was aghast to find my name linked to a Salon post about her hacked nude pictures – I swear, Agent Booth, I’ve never even mentioned them in print!


Some of the results were totally bewildering.  A post about seeing four films in one day showed up linked to some website called Thai Job Post.  Another ended up linked on an page under the search phrase “consequences of racism.” Huh?  I re-read the post, and besides a passing reference to “petty prejudices,” there’s nothing in it related to that subject.


My post about being attacked by a Canada goose ended linked on some website, with the following notation: “This article discusses the Canada goose population and details ways to control it.” Um, I don’t think so! 


A two-year old post about the Jay Leno-Conan O’Brien war ended up being argued about a few months ago in the comments on a site called TV By the Numbers. (To the guy who said my argument had no credibility because I called Seinfeld the greatest sitcom of all-time: Bite me!!)


There were a few results that pleased me.  My post about two local organizations battling over Thomas Paine’s legacy is linked on the home page of one of the organizations.  I was aware of that, because the head of that group had posted a comment here.


I was also surprised and pleased to find my parody “Life After I Quit Being a Liberal” excerpted and linked on an organization called the Democratic Underground.  (Just don’t ask me for a donation; like most of the 99%, I’m broke!)  To be honest, I thought the post was also making fun of liberals a little bit, but I guess I’m the only one who saw it that way.


I think I was most pleased – assuming I’ve interpreted this correctly – to appear on someone’s blog called My Executive Summary. Instead of linking to individual posts, he seemed to be linking to entire blogs and mine was one of them.  I’m hoping I’m right, because my ego could use the boost.


Finally, my post about what I would do if I won Power Ball was linked to a site which was flagged in red with “Warning: Dangerous Downloads.”  I like being dangerous.  After all, chicks like the bad boys!


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I just tried it myself and you're right that it pops up in odd places. I also found out there are two or three users on other fora who've used the Abrawang name. You're right that once hit hit Publish, it's off into the wild blue yonder.
Must try this for myself. Love your tags today. ~r
You could go viral without even trying!!! What a fun read this is!
this just made me giggle...
Meh. I've never googled myself. Can't be stuffed.

That said, on two occasions things I wrote led to strange consequences. One was when I was hot on the trail of the story of a US Civil War veteran who died in this tiny Canadian fishing village. In response to a query I sent a descendant, I was referred to a Memorial Day article I had written here (under the Boanerges name).

In the second, I was contacted by the moderator of another website where I occasionally post my drivel (under yet another name) who said a woman was interested in contacting me because I'd unwittingly written about the love of her mother's life, an airman who was killed in the Second War.

I kind of like that. Marshall McLuhan would be so ... ummmm ... distraught.
I can't believe I'm on Google. It's making me want to delete most of my posts. This is the best post title and tag EVER.
To paraphrase Etta James--I would rather go blind than see what a Google search on me might find.
Funny yet still a bit of a cautionary tale. You are so right - publish and say goodbye to it. You don't own it anymore, on some levels.

I wonder if people are requesting in their wills now to have their material removed from the online world after death. I mean, I don't want my stuff all over the joint. I want it to die with me. Or at least be given a proper online burial...god, I'm depressing myself.
hey bad boy,

i tried it - went through the first four pages - nothing interesting at all! damn. so youtube knows every video have posted to my blog, huh? weird, the trackers!
this is like the twilight zone CC!
Okay you didn't go blind, but I do notice you are now wearing glasses!

BTW, it didn't work for me. I googled my name every which way and your name wasn't mentioned once do I'm just figuring you made all this up!
I haven't done this in a while. Think I'll show up with a Hebrew National link in spite of the difference in spelling?
Ugh, this reminds me of when I ran for office. You are permanently on the web, somewhere, all the good, bad and ugly...
I think Googling oneself is a mortal sin. But the real question is, was it fun?
It is weird thing to do, and the Catholic Church says it's a mortal sin, particularly if you enjoy it. But I do it a lot anyway, because I'm not Catholic.
It is not showing up now, but I once did a search for my OS nom de plume and a poem I wrote about the kiwi fruit should up as a link on a website that was all about the kiwi fruit (what else). However, most of the time, my OS screen name always shows as wikipedia entry for bottom feeder.
This is just plain fun. Now I have to go google myself and see what happens; I have a feeling it won't be nearly as interesting!
I don't Google because I believe that it is a front for the one world communist "Don't be evil" people and also causes hair to grow on your palms, so I Yahoo'd myself and found that the only links to my posts are on OS. Should I be insulted or relieved? I'm only going to Yahoo until I need glasses.
@Amy: If you Google your name, and my name shows up, we might have some 'splaining to do!
Well, now at least you don't have the police knocking on your door?
I did that once and discovered I was the center of a debate about immigration. I had written a silly little piece on how Cinco De Mayo became a U.S. holiday. I found a link on a Ron Paul website, discovered Rush Limbaugh had paraphrased it in a radio rant and a reporter at the Houston Chronicle had plagiarizer it. All I could think was "geeze people, learn to take a joke." Thank goodness I don't write anything "steal worthy" anymore, but Thanksgiving is coming....
Cranky, you're always a great read. You couldn't be a bad boy if you tried. :)
Hahaha! I am so afraid~.... I have to admit to googling and the most random comments come up! Good thing I won't ever run for Vice President!
I have heard that there is a program you can use to see if your stuff is getting plagiarized, but I haven't been able to find the search engine.
Off to google myself........
Okay so I just checked it out and there are pages of crap I've said and now this will be added to it! The scariest are the random links~
Salman Rushdie Googles himself first thing every morning to see what anyone might have said about him over night (according to the memoir's of a gilted girlfriend, a genre all it's own with him).
As long as the "self pleasuring" was good for you, that's really all that matters.
Fun post (and true) Once you hit publish you lose all control.
Wow! I haven't thought of The Waitresses in a LONG time! This is a fun post. Two recipes I uploaded on an old users group ( - (remember users groups?) - in the early 90's (Holiday turkey, and the related Turkey Rice Soup) have apparently been translated into SEVERAL languages! I've got posts on there in Reiki sites, astrology sites . . . Yes, I AM a hippie.
This is the first thing I've read by you and I grinned all of the way through. I'll be back. Oh, and you're right. I tried both Google and Yahoo and got largely different results. R
I've done the googling-myself thing a couple of times, and, for some strange reason, I always feel guilty. Could be that old Catholic upbringing bringing up that guilt, likely even. But steeled by the interesting results you so wonderfully convey in your post, maybe I'll give it another shot!
Hah. I tried this and sharing a name with a big green bird apparently puts many many many pages of green graphic design firms, yoga studios, restaurants, and Audubon sites ahead of my blog. I like it that way :-)
Check out what appears on your images. That was a surprise to me. Weirdness on others' posts. It was kind of a kick as was this post.
The first time I googled myself my parents caught me and warned me about warts.

Perhaps we had the same parents.
@Jon: That would be weird because we're the same age. Wait, maybe we're twins separated at birth!

@Miguela: Because I wrote the introduction to a friend's book, I once entered my real name in the search on Amazon. It returned over 90 books that I've supposedly written, including several on science (which was by far my worst subject in school).
That was some OS Party you went to that made you want to Google yourself!
Your findings all seem kind of fun. You should have had life as a spokesperson for a major airline. I cannot tell you what I found as a result.

Still, very amusing, as you always do.
Hmmm. When I Google "sweetfeet," all I get it shoes, dancing and porn.
Got to love Google!! I discovered one of my posts got linked on Colbert's website, but had disappeared from the discussion board, never did find out what was said!! Boohooohoo!! :D Someone actually tried to make available to the public some of my cartoons as wallpaper for folks' phones!! Hahaha!! They made less money than I did so...:D
LOL This was great- "My post about being attacked by a Canada goose ended linked on some website, with the following notation: “This article discusses the Canada goose population and details ways to control it.” Um, I don’t think so!

A two-year old post about the Jay Leno-Conan O’Brien war ended up being argued about a few months ago in the comments on a site called TV By the Numbers. (To the guy who said my argument had no credibility because I called Seinfeld the greatest sitcom of all-time: Bite me!!)"

yes and the girls like bad boys but I hear the dangerous ones are irresistible lol
I'm absolutely terrified to think what might be out there.
Cranky, your post started me on a weird odyssey...but I didn't find anything nearly as interesting or surprising as you did. Side note: any time you mention your run-in with the goose, I chuckle. My boyfriend loves it, too.
I googled my name under images and only one was of me. For most, there was no explanation of why the image came up. Several were of Rodney Allen Rippy :)
I was just debating these issues. I am on the first FOUR pages of Google. And some of those have me curious, almost enough to visit (thank goodness Google now has that little preview window). I am on BBC ??? trafficfaq and other inciedentals. Now why? Well, the minute you post a news video, it winds around the web like a spider on his way to the fly, interloping every sight that carries news. And it stays in the cache.

Salon has a very powerful spider. We get a lot of upfront placements. Nice to give OS an attaboy.

OK, I did it, I googled "cranky cus" and Scarlet Johansson and yes, a bit pathetic. But isn't that what we love about you?
Hmmm...I'm going to have to try this myself. Love the Scarlett Johansson connection.
Hmmm...I'm going to have to try this myself. Love the Scarlett Johansson connection.