Old Usernames

DreamcastBlast #nostalgia #old internet

Another day and another worthless account to make and use up like a bitter meal, forced to be swallowed. It seems like a daily occurrence for her as she sighs and glances upon the account creation screen, eyes glazed over at the numbness of it all. It seems so simple just to spew some garbage verification to play a new video game with her friends or sign up for another job board, but doing it every month or so is very soul heavy. Her fingers clanking at her laptop, the reflection from the glass keys looking at her with the baggy eyes that she reflected.

Reflection is something that happens a lot in her room whether she likes it or not. Her full length mirror gave all 1 person in that room a good luck at her lazy hunched over body. Then there were all of the metals and trophies from years past, participation trinkets for the most part for sports with a few diplomas for the various grades in glossy plastic. These reflections were at best, unnoticeable and at their worst, reminders of wasted times and sprained ankles, distractions then and distractions now from creating another account.

In the end, reflections can only give so much amusement to the ADHD riddled brain of the woman at the computer, so she sighed and gave up a few minutes to account creation. Personal information would be done first, Jessica J, age 20. It’s information that can make her identifiable to any contacts while also not giving another sleazy megacorp another bit of her personality to spy and pander too. Her last name kept a minor secret while her age was a vague 20 while in reality she was really in her 20s instead of being that number on the dot. She would’ve gone on in this crazed depressive rambling when all of a sudden there was a peculiar event on her computer.

“Damn it!” Jessica spoke as she wiped her black, unkempt hair away from her eyes to reveal the absolute chaos going on her screen. Her mouse was going haywire with clicks and shakes. The white pointer jumps in an instant as she struggles to remember where her mouse was, unable to find it through touch alone. Her desk gave her no feedback of a mouse and as she finally jumped up from her desk she found the source of the misfortune. Under her cheeks lay the black mouse being sat on, begging to be put back on its wooden desk and away from the suffocating beanbag seat.

Readjusting herself was simple enough as she placed the mouse back into its home and her hand reached for it once more. She was using the trackpad on her keyboard out of sheer lazy standing, but now she had a reason to pay a bit more attention to herself. While she was annoyed having to put 10% more effort into a tedious task, she would end up having her baggy eyes widen as her screen showed an interesting set of names on a popup window.

In the rapid clicking that happened previously the mouse must’ve clicked on something she rarely checked. So used to autofills and the computer remembering so much she couldn’t help but let it do all the work in remembering the small things. She had assignments to do and patterns to memorize so why not let the computer handle something as simple as names. Although, now looking at these names, she can’t help but let out a small smile as she silently synergises with her past selves, her previous identities, her usernames.

The first that appeared was an ancient relic from times long gone, from when she first got her first computer. A hand me down of a hand me down from father to older brother to herself but she didn’t mind getting her own device at age 6. Of course being so young there was plenty for her to do that she really shouldn’t have been doing. That’s when the first of these names arrived, from before she was even Jessica, when her name was XXGreenbaySpongebob2003XX.

An audible chuckle reached her mouth as she went to click on the link who’s username once housed a Youtube account. The channel was no more, the sands of time eroding the AMVs, constraining Nu metal, Pop Punk and Dubstep laid atop of clips from various anime her past self enjoyed at the time. More than likely all were claimed by copyright bots but in her mind, in her memories, in her nostalgia they can all be there again. For her alone to smile and laugh at and not for anyone else to cringe and wince at.

The list kept going down with similar usernames containing an XX in the beginning and a XX at the end. For Neopets, Cartoon Network, and Deviantart it was a variation of a rock band and a cartoon character each getting progressively more “adult” with age. Spongebob became Avatar, Avatar became Family Guy and Family Guy became South Park. These accounts as were the Youtube ones we’re all deader than dead on the world wide web. No need to mourn as memories are for her and no one else.

As time would go on and the scrolling would reach about the halfway point is when the XX became extinct and some more interesting usernames crowded the screen. No longer would it be the cartoons or rock bands that got attention, but instead was school accounts, message boards and social media who were a Jekyll and Hyde to say the least. On the school accounts were the various boring first name then last name portions, the first time she ever dreaded making an account for every stupid assigned website that was used for one year and then dropped forever. The more personal usernames however, tell a different story.

This is a story that is common in the world, a story of an edgy teen wanting to do edgy things while sounding deep. Cutsofblood69, Whalinginmisery!, then there was a regretful one that she didn’t want to even read out. With these there was a mix of cringe and creativity as she looked upon those pages with some even still being up. They were relics of ideas and concepts she thought she knew but really didn’t, only covered up by the fact that there was no way to link them back to her with so much time passed and a new email being used. She wanted to forget her trip down memory lane when she clicked the last link, but was delighted to see it gone forever. Banned from the world and while always existing in her mind, it can be seen as a learning experience instead of a catalyst of everything she doesn’t believe now.

She didn’t feel like going on much longer after that near heart attack. To see her old self corrupt her new self would be beyond heartbreaking as the sins of 14 kill the current 20 something. One more click and that would be the end of this road, back to the task at hand and back to her vision of the here and now. It’s here that nostalgia takes hold and regret thankfully goes to die, it’s here she finds something she almost forgot about, her favorite username and the first one created when Jessica was Jessica.

JstarPop is a name that doesn’t mean anything to anyone, an old dusty account unused and unkept on a dead message board. However it was here that the once bored college student was giggling like it was freshman year all over again. It was here when she uploaded everything from karaoke to pictures of her body, so much change in so little time as she went through her own exploration. This ended of course at the homepage of the account where she eagerly clicked upon the “about me” section and with a smile read to herself.

“Jessica J: age 16” She spoke out loud as she couldn’t help but think back, her mind lost in her own headspace with self discovery nostalgia. Her past before culminating with this old username. This JstarPop was unknown to the world and would forever be unknown, but to her none of that matters as it signals something amazing, the beginning of her present.

From here on the usernames became far more plentiful, yet far more standardized. The sighing confirmation that these accounts were made when she was an adult. Randomly generated garbage made just to get past a screen and verify an email. It was for applying for jobs that never got back to her and for playing games she 9 times out of 10 didn’t seem to like. It was a snap back to reality as she finally returned to the account creation screen.

It was here she had to do something, as she could only reflect on the past for so long in the day. The notifications from Discord blaring in her ears as it seems all of her friends were already installing the game. With this, for the first time in a long time, she smiled as she typed in her username. XXJstarBloodhoundXX was written upon the screen as she audibly cracked up as her nostalgia popped up a name for her. With the hard part done, came the part she always did last. Her password was effortlessly typed in, sometimes with an extra letter or a combination but always similar ever since she was 6. Despite everything she always kept it around and it would greet her now and forever. Forever in her memories and forever memorized, never to be seen by anyone but herself, and she couldn’t be happier.