Nothing In Common
I’m signed to Google Alerts, which helps me to pick up reviews I might have missed on blogs. I usually read them and offer comments or help to reviewers. But I also get copied in on other Christopher Fowlers, and have lately noticed that while quite a few of the European ones are scientists, most of the American ones seem to be in jail.
Does this tell us something about the cultural signifiers of the name Christopher, in Europe a middle-class name, in the US a working class name? Or is it simply that the US has the highest prison population on the planet?
I already know another Christopher Fowler and sometimes get sat next to him at dinner, people thinking we must have a lot in common. (Answer: No). Today’s Google Alerts brought up these two US citizens. The one on the left was arrested in Ohio on unnamed charges, while the one is a keen reader and is seeking online pen friends. Unfortunately he’s on Death Row in a state pen somewhere. The rules about penfriending include this:
We suggest using a postal box. DO NOT PROVIDE ANY OF THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION: Your physical address, home or work telephone number, job location or employer, your financial situation [i.e. income, stocks, bank accounts, etc], names of relatives, account numbers and other personal information. Do not identify your job description in high profile fields as medical, legal, government, military, accounting, broker, etc.
Part of me is tempted to respond, but knowing my mouth I’ll end up getting us both in trouble. Has anyone else done this?