In conjunction with May being Masturbation Month, I share with you this little known fact about myself.
I discovered the computer world when I turned 9 in November of 1989. It was during my birthday that I overheard an uncle talk about his computer and the World Wide Web. Earlier that year, some science guy named Tim Berners-Lee at CERN, the European Particle Physics Laboratory in Switzerland, invented a way for computer geeks like my uncle to share information to other computer geeks like my uncle. He was the oddball relative (think of the Big Bang TV show) who was quiet, never married, and always had a faraway look in his eyes, more so when he was at his computers or with his geeky friends. His “crew” was mostly scientists and mathematicians, and many of them went on to become celebrated for writing and developing GUI versions of the Web for emerging browsers.
At the time, I had no idea what any of this meant and I wasn’t sure what a computer really was until my uncle gave us his ’85 Commodore Amiga. It had a single 880 KB 3.5-inch disk drive and 256 KB of RAM, which meant little to me, but it made him grin and lose that faraway lost-in-space look. Happily, he wrote programs and set up math problems for me to solve. And he showed me how to write my own programs. I was probably the only fourth grader who knew how to write BASIC equations. But unlike my uncle, I didn’t see why having a computer in the den was anything to get excited about other than playing video games. For me, the computer was a curio and nothing more.
That summer I flew with my mother to Pennsylvania to visit relatives for a month. For shits and grins, a cousin and I took a two-week children’s workshop in art sponsored by a local college. Right away, our teacher was handsome and I swooned hard enough that I could not pay attention in class. Eventually, I returned to earth and he soon kindled in me an interest in art and photography, which led me to a bookstore where I nagged my mom to buy me a half-dozen art books. She made me choose two and put the rest back. While I did, I bumped into a handsome boy carrying a computer book that featured the Amiga sitting back home.
“I have that computer.”
“Oh yes. My uncle works for a computer company. He knows all about computers.”
It was a real turn-on to see how much I’d impressed that boy as I bragged about my uncle. I may have had my first orgasm while I boasted that he was developing a platform for hypertext. Wow!
Bobby and I exchanged names, addresses and phone numbers. And I left that bookstore with wet pants and two books about computers that would change my life forever.
Back home in California, my school was slow at jumping on my computer-crazed bandwagon, so I nagged my uncle to teach me everything he knew about computers. He didn’t, of course. I mean, after all, who wants to talk about work when they’re visiting their sister for some R and R? But I was persistent, so he hooked us to a Modem and introduced me to Usenet. From other users, I learned more about computers every day while I visited the “Big 8” worldwide newsgroups from 6pm to 8pm. It was there that I discovered alt.binaries and a world of illegally distributed commercial software, copyrighted media, and obscene material easily accessible to my preteen fingers and eyes.
Wow! … and uh-oh! But it was exciting, all the same.
I was 12 when weekends alone in the house and on the computer became my life. I wrote porn, masturbated, and discovered cybersex. Then my mother caught me and monitored all my computer activity. But I continued to write and watch porn in private and at friends’ houses, and I lived two cyber lives: the good girl who only used the computer at home to do homework, and the cyber vixen who, along with other girls, practiced safe sex on the Internet.
Whichever side of the issue you stand, I’m pretty sure I remained a real-life virgin much longer than if my uncle had chosen a different career.
So, in celebration of this special month, let me get undressed, get comfortable on my bed, open this laptop and…