Are You Sitting Comfortably?

When you post a comment to my website, I must approve the comment before it appears on my page. This last week I had an unusual set of experiences connected with the series of articles I posted in 2014. I’d like to tell you about it; are you sitting comfortably?

At the beginning of the week, I received a comment on my August 2014 article, ‘Dress to Express.’ The writer of the comment (‘PatriciaKa’) said she’d been very impressed with the article, and had forwarded it to a friend who was so impressed that he took her to breakfast to express his gratitude! Three days later, I received another comment from PatriciaKa which can only be described as venomous. Oddly, it was about the article, ‘Dress to Express’. The following morning, I received yet another comment from Patricia, this time about a notice of one of my YouTube readings, identical to the ‘I got invited to breakfast on the strength of your posting’ comment she’d sent a few days before.

Whenever someone sends a comment to my page, I receive a private notification from the webmaster, which includes the email and IP addresses of the comment sender. I did some research and found that there are over forty screen names—all of them connected with forum spam—attributed to PatriciaKa’s Gmail and IP addresses—she most certainly doesn’t exist.

It is of course disappointing that the nice comments weren’t real (and a relief that the venomous one was false!), but in a general way, this was only a minor annoyance. I don’t see the point of such efforts—it only annoys, no one will get any money, honestly or dishonestly, from posting false comments. There were a couple of other complimentary comments on offer, but I deleted them also, since WordPress’s spam filter thought they might be ‘forum spam’ too.

People are very free with their insincerity—they say what they don’t mean, they make promises they won’t keep, they lead others to false conclusions, they praise what they haven’t even seen or read. Who, then, is to be believed? How can we know?

While I was laying out the framework for this article involving PatriciaKa, I received a telephone call from a man whose company is going to provide a service for me. We spoke for some time, exchanged a few pleasantries (I’m pleased to say I made him laugh more than once), and at the end of the conversation, he said, ‘I hope everything works out for you, and I wish you the very best.’

Because I had PatriciaKa in mind at the time, I found it difficult to know whether he was mouthing the words, or actually meant them. I would like very much to believe he genuine in what he said—I find a sincere wish almost as enjoyable as a good hug, and as heartening.

It needs only one person to spoil it for the rest of us. Because of people like PatriciaKa, serious well-wishers may have a difficult time being believed.

At the beginning of this article, I asked if you were sitting comfortably.

Do I really care?

If you enjoyed reading this, please take a look at my eBooks on

Behind These Red Doors: Stories a Cathedral Could Tell :
Lives of the Ain’ts: Comedic Biographies of Directors Errant:
The Inn of Souls:

You can also see a reading of excerpts of each book by clicking on the links below:

Behind These Red Doors: Stories a Cathedral Could Tell:
Lives of the Ain’ts: Comedic Biographies of Directors Errant:
The Inn of Souls:

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