My only conversation with Sophie

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One of the weird and wonderful consequences of having appeared in Danny Wallace’s book Join Me in 2003 is that every now and then I would get random strangers contacting me, mostly via MSN Messenger.

Yesterday I was searching through old logs of conversations, looking for a conversation I’d had with Steve Lawson a couple of months ago when I stumbled upon this rather sweet conversation I had with a 13 year old Joinee called Sophie.

It’s the one and only conversation that I had with her on Messenger. Probably because her parents discovered that she’d been chatting with a 30-something cult member in the northern and barbaric ice kingdom of Scotland.

22 June 2006 at 19:08

Sophie: Hello
Gareth: Hello
Sophie: Sorry I’ve never talked before. I was on your website and found your email. I’m a Joinee of Danny, by the way.
Gareth: πŸ˜€ What’s your name?


Sophie: Sorry about that. My MSN is a bit lethal.
Gareth: I asked “What’s your name?”, but you’d gone!
Sophie: Hehe … eek! Sorry, my name’s Sophie. πŸ™‚
Gareth: Hello Sophie. My name is Gareth, but I guess you know that. πŸ˜€
Sophie: Yep I do πŸ˜€ You’re in Danny Wallace’s book Join Me, in case you didn’t know πŸ™‚ and you like Metallica.
Gareth: As I happens I am, and I do. And I’m listening to Metallica right now: Metallica – Last Caress – 2006/06/03 Nurburgring, GER. That’s amazing! How do you know such things?!
Sophie: Well.. it does take quite a genius to know those facts πŸ˜€
Gareth: So, what of you? Where are you on this vast but interesting planet of ours?
Sophie: Um, I live near London. In Buckinghamshire? I am 13 … nearly 14 … um … Danny Wallace is like my hero LOL … erm.. I like skiing and football and odd things, Oh and I say KAPOW! a lot …
Gareth: Cool! There are not enough people who say “KAPOW!” in my view.
Sophie: Definitely! Phew, It’s not just me πŸ™‚ I seem to scare people a lot by saying it but I think of it this way: I’m normal in a world of weird people.
Gareth: Are you related to Batman, by any chance? I mean, I won’t be disappointed if you are not.
Sophie: Yes! He’s my brother.
Gareth: Oh. Cool!
Sophie: Yep!!
Gareth: Cool and the cool, as my friend Rory would say.
Sophie: What a lovely phrase.

Pause for a couple of minutes

Gareth: Sorry, I nipped downstairs.
Sophie: No problem.
Gareth: I got a letter today from a company telling me to remove people’s comments on one of my blog posts or they’d take me to court.
Sophie: :S
Gareth: Which was quite exciting. So now — having removed them — I am now writing them a letter. I’d popped down to run it past Jane.
Sophie: How come? Eek! Good luck with writing them a letter πŸ™‚ What was the problem with the comments?
Gareth: They were libellous.
Sophie: :S

And that was it. Imagine if we kept a written record of every single conversation — trivial and important — that we’d ever had. I wonder if it would make for as good reading as my conversation with Sophie that summer’s evening two years ago.

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Gareth Saunders

I’m Gareth J M Saunders, 49 years old, 6β€² 4β€³, father of 3 boys (including twins). Enneagram type FOUR and introvert (INFP), I am a non-stipendiary priest in the Scottish Episcopal Church, I sing with the NYCGB alumni choir, play guitar, play mahjong, write, draw and laugh… Scrum master. Latterly, web architect and agile project manager at the University of St Andrews and former warden at Agnes Blackadder Hall.

3 thoughts on “My only conversation with Sophie”

  1. I love finding these little snippets of life.

    I found a whole load of old old emails I’d saved (on a floppy disk – that shows you the age of them!) and they made very amusing reading.

  2. I used to look through my old ones at home when I was still rocking XP but nowadays I rarely look through my Pidgin logs.
    I guess this is why I love Gmail, I just archive everything. It’s great to look back and see the odd proper email and I occassionally go through MySpace back to 2004 when I first joined and look at the old messages.

    on a related note I recently found an old note book with dittys and “song” lyrics I’d written, some of these from back in 2000/1, felt odd reading them again!

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