Lily Mei (@LilyMeizing) is a law and writing student at UTS. She also edits the UTS mag Vertigo.
Mike Day (@mikedayawake) is a writing/lit student at UQ. You can find his stories on Scum and Stilts.
Mike and Lily met over the internet in February. They wrote this piece together (l:Lily, m:Mike) and compiled their thoughts over a few early morning Skype calls.
lily and mike met on twitter. lily lives in sydney. she met her current boyfriend on tinder. mike lives in brisbane and thinks tinder is dumb. he met his first girlfriend on myspace in 2006. he is currently single. lily never had a myspace. she often tells people she met her boyfriend at wholefoods. she doesn’t realise wholefoods hasn’t made it to australia yet.[some messages have been omitted for reasons. trust us maybe.]
l: i didn’t lie on purpose mate. (sorry.)
l: my boyfriend of a year and a half had broken up with me while we were on a five-week holiday (alone) in south east asia. i cracked some weird joke about our relationship lasting longer than he expected to which he replied “we’ll talk about it on the plane.” but i brought it up again as we were falling asleep. it was november and our relationship suddenly had an expiry date: 24 dec 2013.
m: compliments are so much easier to process online. it’s easier not to panic and talk too much. my friends tell me i need to learn to just say “thank you” and smile. i went to this party where someone asked, “what does a ‘mike day date’ even look like? you don’t drive her around in your shitty red corolla do you?”
l: i made a resolution to write more and connect with other writers. enter twitter. i found scum on twitter. i read mike’s piece because i thought reading about other peoples break ups would help. making friends (read a friend) via twitter was a distraction. mike seemed nice. my brother told me his story was obviously stolen from a movie script. my mum gave me a lecture on the internet and stranger danger. she also sent me a lot of emails with links to articles about paedophiles. i still think mike’s nice and probably not a creeper.
[mike asks lily for her facebook and looks through all her tagged photos]
m: i showed a friend some tweets from lily and she said, “yeah dude, this girl likes you,” and i said, “she lives in sydney,” and she said, “typical”. i like that there are lots of pictures from dress up parties. the fringe suits her.
l: there was something about twitter and facebook that was limiting. i wanted to be able to gauge the kinda person he was. i feel like that’s much easier to do in person. social media will tell you a lot about a person or the person they want to project. but i like to be able to see their reactions yknow, real time. when mike said “she forgot about a family dinner” i wanted to reply with “classic memory loss.” but i didn’t know if that was funny or grossly inappropriate. i didn’t want to isolate him. yeah, it took a while for me to recognise that actually mike and i are weirdly similar. we genuinely get on.
l: neither of us can quite remember why we wanted to prove we were dorkier.
[lily and mike separately partake in binge drinking] l: we competed…no, bonded? over drunken shenanigans. that was definitely some poor form primary school flirting:
l: he had a rat. but not a pet rat. it was this rat that “came with the house.” i felt far away enough that it didn’t matter to me whether this guy i met over the internet was or wasn’t going to poison his resident rodent. i got attached to the idea of ziggy but not the idea of a rat. unattractive.
m: my housemate and i named the rat that lives under my house, ziggy, and one night he scrambled out from under the fridge and scared the shit out of me. that night i had a dream where i locked myself in my room as thousands of rats crawled through my house. every time i talk to lily she asks how ziggy is.
[mike neglects to buy rat traps or poison]
l: if someone asks me how i am, i’ll tell them. i mean it’s their fault for asking the question but i also feel like -and felt very early on – that i could tell mike stuff. i mean i’d read a piece that intimately explored his feelings so it only seemed fair. i was using the messenger app to talk to mike. when i clicked on his display picture, i got two links: “view timeline” and “mobile”. i clicked mobile, i didn’t know it was going to call him. i hit my phone “no no no!” hang up. i told mike i almost called him by mistake and he said “oh no, you would’ve heard how drunk i am.” i almost called him again, on purpose.
l: i told him i wanted to write something together but thought maybe we should talk when he was less drunk. he was enthusiastic.
m: for a while i thought about lily whenever i got drunk. one night when i took this girl home, my phone flashed on my bedside table with a message from lily and the girl asked who it was. i said it was just a friend.
l: did you have sex with her?
m: … yeah.
l: ah ok.
l: i was on the phone to a friend when a picture of mike’s sister came up on my newsfeed. she’d baked a game of thrones cake and won something. i couldn’t work out which girl she was so i followed a few links to find out. i found a photo of the two of them together. i went to share it via messenger with the friend i was talking to but i was saying “mike” every two seconds. i couldn’t concentrate. i accidently sent it to him. then i pissed myself laughing. i think he was confused. my friend told me i was an “idiot”
[lily likes every photo of mike with his family]
m: “those are my parents!”
l: “cute parents.”
l: eh’unno. ’guess
m: i guess yes.
l: meant more that i guess. i guess yes
m: when lily told me she had a boyfriend, i told her that was great. it’s strange feeling jealous over someone you’ve never met. he has a lot more twitter followers than me – just a couple thousand- which is kind of a bummer.
currently, lily is eating chocolate and trying to convince her boyfriend to buy a turtle instead of a dog. she wants to name it esio trot. mike bought a kitten called vivienne off gumtree for $25. lily’s extremely jealous but doesn’t even like cats. ziggy and his accomplices are still at large.
lily and mike have never met irl.