At this point, we’ve spent a good hour or two chatting about it.
There’s a big interpersonal conflict between two friends of ours. And we’re both in the same boat: We know them well enough to be interested in what’s going on. But we’re not close enough to actually sidle up and ask the parties involved.
The only reason we know about it at all is because they both keep posting stuff online.
And their posts are stuck in that same uncanny valley. There’s enough there to be curious about what’s going on. But not enough to actually get a grip on the situation.
It doesn’t help that it doesn’t make sense. Neither of their accounts are internally consistent. And their individual accounts certainly aren’t consistent with one another.
They’ve sprinkled extra hints everywhere. We have a lot of mutual friends — and they keep vagueposting about the situation in the comments sections of random posts by our friends. Like, literally on a thread where someone is baking bread and posting pictures of the results.
“This is none of my business,” I tell my friend. “I can’t believe I’ve thought about this so much.” We’ve been going on for a while. They have so many screenshots of these extra hints, these breadcrumbs. (The fact that one is literally on a post about bread makes this name even funnier.)
“Oh it’s okay,” my friend says. “Obviously, I’m addicted, too.”
“I just wish my brain would let go of this. It keeps asking the same questions. And it’s none of my business!”
They laugh. “You know,” they say, “I think this is because of lockdown. When people are out and about, there’s so much atmospheric gossip that just kind of… happens? Not the malicious kind even. Just people passing random news around. And we don’t usually think too much of it until it’s gone.” They hesitate before adding, “I think we’re all a little starved for it.”
“I think you’re on to something,” I tell them. “I’m sure we’ll know eventually.”
“Oh probably,” they say. “But this was fun. Guessing.”