Two of Us

By Anonymous

This should come as no shock to anyone – there are two of me. There’s Public Me, and there’s Real Me. Please don’t click away – I’m absolutely not about to make some overwrought Tyler Durden metaphor.

We don’t discuss it much, but there are two of all of us. Public Persona is the polite, public, client-facing persona, who works to balance stakeholders in a relatable, dude-with-tits-style non-threatening manner. This persona is a shadow of our real selves. She Gets Shit Done, but would never, ever, use such a phrase in her grandmother’s hearing. In part, the success of the Public Persona is couched in being a shadow of Real Person. She never outwardly acknowledges the deep, nagging fear she isn’t enough. Instead, she moves on from failure, takes criticism gracefully, and refuses to stoop to petty office drama. She is the picture of growth and momentum. Public Persona shirks politics (at least as much as is practical), and attempts to be some sort of terrible political chameleon. It doesn’t work, and she knows it doesn’t work, but she keeps trying anyway.

Real Person is someone else entirely. She drinks, she smokes, she fights with Strangers Online, and she says “fuck.” A lot. In fact, Real Person says “fuck” enough to make her father, who has the vocabulary of a drunken sailor, blush a little. Real Person seeks out the [EXPLICIT] version of songs she hears on the radio, and scream-sings every last word. Real Person is a feminist and resents that Public Persona must attempt – for her own career survival – to be perceived as nearly everything she isn’t.

She is deeply flawed, and is constantly and acutely aware of her flaws. She’s thinking about her too-round face, her too-myopic eyes, her short temper, and her willingness to judge others, right now. She knows that she’ll be fired from her job any minute, because she is barely competent.

Real Person is aware of Imposter Syndrome, but that could not possibly describe her feelings on her own inadequacy, because she knows her inadequacy is not made up. Real Person knows her friends are only her friends out of pity. Who in their right mind would want to be friends with this?

So here I am. Real Me. I’ll do my best to be completely and unapologetically (that’s a lie – I’m very sorry for who I am) myself. I started this project because I want to throw my true, unaltered, and unlimited thoughts somewhere. Anywhere but remaining in my own mind. To accomplish this, I’ve got to remain as anonymous as possible. As of now, this Real Me does not have a Twitter handle. She doesn’t even have a name, much less a gmail account.

There is naturally some overlap between Public Me and Real Me. Ultimately, we’re more alike than we are different; after all, we share the same body and the same brain. I am a third-year consultant. I live in a mid-sized city in the Midwest. I am married, childless, and pet-less. 

Mostly, this … whatever this is … will have no theme. Please bear with me as I find my direction. My conception of “blogging,” or writing first-person nonfiction prose, is colored heavily by 2006 Me’s understanding of what cool people did on MySpace, Xanga, or LiveJournal. It took a considerable effort to avoid posting song lyrics to show you how deep and tragic Real Me is. She’s neither deep nor tragic. She’s a middle-class white girl from the suburbs.

More forthcoming from Anonymous.