After visiting a few porn sites Joe found himself in a New Zealand chat room. He liked this chat room because it was small, (under 10 people each time he visited.) This was a place where he could hang out and remain completely anonymous. He started to chat with faceless strangers on the other side of the planet. Chatting on the Internet posed a huge problem to Joe. He could not type; he could barely hack at the keyboard of the outdated computer he inherited from Connie. As a result of this he lagged behind in the hot topics of the chat room. Sometimes he became frustrated knowing he could not voice his opinion in time before the room would move on to another topic. Every chat room has a leader. This chat room’s leader called himself Cough Up A Fur Ball. Joe felt that was appropriate because he would often catch him in lies and then correct Mr. Cough Up A Fur Ball. The chat room leader did not like being choked, or rather embarrassed, in front of his friends and would just as often kick Joe out of the chat room for no apparent reason other than being right. Joe didn’t come into this chat room to fight and would let the chat room dictator, or rather leader, pontificate uncontested.
One night Joe couldn’t sleep so he popped into the chat room. The only thing Joe knew about New Zealand was that it was the exact opposite of the Northwest. Winter here meant summer there. Being a distance runner, Joe also knew the great tradition of New Zealand’s runners—Murry Halberg, Peter Snell and John Walker just to name a few. Clad in black they would intimidate opposing runners just by stepping on the track.
While Joe was desperately hacking away at the computer keyboard trying to keep up with the topic, Cough Up A Fur Ball pointed out something that surprised Joe. “Hey Sandra, it looks like Joe is from your neck of the woods.” Joe immediately told the chat room leader to quit joking around because; after all, what would be the odds of chatting with someone from the Seattle area in a New Zealand chat room?
Curious, Joe sent Sandra a private message, (something you do in the chat room when you really want to get noticed.) Sure enough, Cough Up A Fur Ball wasn’t lying. Sandra was from Port Angeles, only two hours away from Joe’s house in Duvall, Washington. Neither Joe nor Sandra expected to meet someone from Washington State in this chat room.