I’m obsessed with this idea of doppelgangers lately. My intro into what exactly is a doppelganger was care of a Lifetime movie starring Melissa Gilbert (Half Pint! times 2! And I’ve left the joke book on that one at home, folks. Fill in your own punchline). I guess in true definition – and what the movie projected – a doppelganger is a shadow-self that only the self can see…so it has mystical or spiritual, namely devil-backed, connotations – as evil incarnate, a portent to death, etc. But in keeping with the light and fluffy and spreadable (and off the horror screen and any kind of Witch’s Brew), my definition of a doppelganger is merely a resemblance of oneself (either in spirit, characteristic, or physical form). And since I believe that all living creatures are inherently good and redeemable, my mind, wander as She may, can not go THERE, devil boy.
So doppelgangers are gooooood.
For example, when I say someone is a doppelganger of someone I used to date, I am inferring that the named doppelganger is actually perhaps the Good Twin because he is not tainted by the Past and Whimsy of the particular Copy, who was merely posing as the Original. As it relates to guys I have dated (read: Past, Unwanted), the doppelganger is the essence of what this person SHOULD have been or what I imagined him to be. (Who said Imaginary Boyfriends weren’t acceptable? I don’t think Dr. Phil has touched this one.) So I might build this Unknown Twin up to what should have been. So you know what happens next? Cyber-stalking is in order, Webbers! Because I really have to give him more context than: the Asst Manager at Whole Foods, in Chucks, who looks like Pompadour with a better hair cut. I like to call it: Dating at a Distance. I would argue that this is actually healthier, Heartbreakers and Breakees.
But let me expound on one obsession at a time.
I vaguely remember years ago someone claiming to know my dad from somewhere. “He looks just like you, everything about you.” Well, there was no way in hell these people knew each other unless my daddy had a double life and appeared at dinner every single night of my life growing up as a hologram. (What's good for Elvis is good for my daddy. But he shouldn't have to suffer Celine. I'm just saying.)
I tuck that way as my daddy having a doppelganger. And if anybody should be cloneable, it shouldn’t be a cow named Dolly, but it should have been a Pollack named Ski. And this is not After Death or In Retrospect talk – or Polish propaganda. (For that I would just say: Go stuff a sausage. Pass the pigs. And fly the Polish flag.) So I find myself looking for my dad wherever I go. Sometimes I just imagine what it would be like to see him walking down the street - looking lost, of course, because he can’t find us - as me, my brother, my sister, and my mom all live at new addresses, new cities…new states, even. Perhaps it is unhealthy and too psychologically-revealing to tell you that a huge factor in why I stayed renting at my old place for so long – was so he could find us. To flash the sanity card and stave the straight jackets, I will tell you that I mean that in the spiritual sense. And it is also why I don’t understand why people wouldn’t want an open casket funeral (unless gruesome circumstances demand not) because I had to see his body otherwise I would never have believed that he just didn’t exist in this world anymore. And, y’all, it took me a long time to actually say it like that: exist in this world. Because, doubters, and I was one of them, there has got to be a silver lining to death – there has to be. So keep a girl hopeful and don’t tell me otherwise.
While I have never seen his doppelganger, per se, I do see my dad in people – not as in "i see dead people" see, mind you - it might be in an expression, emotion, a look. An indescribable. Recently, I’ve seen him in a baggage handler at Raleigh International. I’ve seen him in a guy on House Hunters. And in a saxaphonist in Wynton Marsalis' band. All these people looked nothing like him, yet, there was something familiar. Even he has seen a dopelganger. I remember one time sitting on a bar-chartered bus (bar to ballpark, ballpark to bar, because that is how he rolled) coming back from a Chicago Cubs game and him talking about this old lady sitting a few rows ahead of us. He thought she, eerily, reminded him of his mom: my dear grandma, who incidently died too young too. I wondered what it was about her that got his mind wandering There. But now I know, you never let it go. It's impossible to forget. You wonder (and you wander). But you can change your address because he will be everywhere, if nowhere.
So, seeking out doppelgangers….it keeps me believing, see?
An off-shoot of this theme (that try as I might to steer otherwise, brings this back to dating blog material), is lately I have been seeing double of Pompadour. That guy in the pool in Vegas. That guy walking over the Key Bridge last week. The manager at Whole Foods. Hell, in Blakissey even! And why? The shoes? The hair? An expression? An Indie Posturer? I have let IT go because I have had the "he's just not that into you" kick in the ass and puddles of tears that I just can not go through AGAIN. But yet...there he is. But this He is the Good Twin. In theory, at least. And in Whole Foods. Hey, they can't all be corporate cowboys.
And so, where does cyber-stalking fit into this? Yeah, well, I'll just say, I'm good at my job, which equates to: finding information. And, it sometimes seeps into my personal life. It's like the porn star who likes it dirty at home too. It's not just all there in your briefcase or your crotchless panties, it's in your blood. That is why you do what you do and you do it good.
So let me show you how this works.
I'm doing some grocery shopping, trying to mind my own damn business, and I see this guy with dark, shaggy hair lingering somewhere between Organic and Recycled - or Romanticized and Doppelganging, in the Land of Writerly Metaphors where Cheese most always abounds. Can't. Help. It. So this is all I know about him: He works in Whole Foods, wears an apron, and roams the aisles. One time near Dairy. And one time near Yoga Supplies. That's all we know, kids. Not even a name. Well, that was 2 hours ago. Because what I just did was this:
1. I went to the Whole Foods homepage.
2. I just took a wild guess that he could be the Assistant Manager, soley based on name, which is a cute boy name and my very first, 3d grade boyfriend's name who showered me with his sister's stuffed animals.
3. I googled him.
4. Common name so I googled my neighborhood with his name.
5. I found a myspace page to confirm.
6. I never said library science was rocket science.
From which I learned: He is from a southern town I think is pretty cool, he write/plays music, he blogs on his page and is a great, witty, insightful writer, and he loves his job. See? That right there tells you that he is the Good Twin of Pompadour (or, as I like to call him now, G-Top). This unknown blows the reality away. And I'd like to stop right there because this is a guy I could "stalk." You know, if that was part and parcel to being a Cool Chick. But then I also found this out: He drives an Xterra, goes on three week hiking trips, and has a girlfriend who doesn't shave her armpits. Alright, let's go back to the beginning -and add that to the mix now...he loves working at Whole Foods. See? There might be a crunch to G-Top's step which might not match up to the clicking of my heels. He might not be the closet rocker I desire.
So I will continue to scan the doppelganger lineup. Believing. I think I'm getting very comfortable being alone. Accepting it even.
And in topic and for the subscribers at home: If Brad Pitt's doppelganger were writing a blog, it might go like this.