When I started commenting on the Patch a few months back, I used a handle and avatar that I had used for a few years; the name Scrat – for the hapless acorn-chasing rodent from “Ice Age”; and a picture of a Deinonychus (think Velociraptor from “Jurassic Park”) from a diorama which I took when I visited the Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman, Montana. If you think the combination is a tad bit schizoid, you’d get no argument from me. And no, this is not a self-diagnosis, but reflects a long-standing interest in paleontology – real and fanciful.
I soon discovered that people I know were posting under their own name (thanks Bill Mills-Curran) and I soon decided to have the courage of my convictions to use my own name and face.
Despite being described in less than flattering terms by several people who responded to my posts and comments, I have not:
- Had my house egged;
- Had a cross burned on my lawn;
- Been punched in the nose;
- Had nasty phone calls;
- Had people pounding on my front door demanding to confront me.
Oh ya - these are NOT suggestions of what you should do to me in response to any future posts.
I have actually gotten a lot of in-person compliments for speaking my mind, or, as I like to think – not being able to keep my mouth shut (or my hands off the keyboard).
What I have also learned is that if I keep my comments on point and not disparage the person to whom I am responding (and I will be the first to admit I am not always successful), it is more likely that folks may still disagree with me, but not be disagreeable.
So – for those of you out there who are still using pseudonyms instead of your real identity – have no fear, you can come in from the cold and let us all know who you are.
Unlike my former Dromaeosaurid avatar, we don’t bite.