If there's one thing I know about you, it's this: You have, at some point in your life, sat down at the computer and typed your own name into a search engine. It's literally impossible to summon the will power not to find out where your name is popping up on the information superhighway (are people still using this term?). Well, I Googled myself first thing this morning, and I found out that there are a lot of Alex Bakers out there. I had to be very specific if I wanted to find anything about myself. Here's how my search went:
alex baker. I began with the most basic search. The first Alex Baker that Google located? The President and C.E.O. of AIG Shopping Center Properties, L.L.C. It occurs to me that this process could be damaging to my self-esteem. What if I'm the least successful Alex Baker I find? Hmmm.
"alex baker." Mr. Waters used to teach my class that quotation marks were their friends when it came to Internet searches, so I gave it a shot. Did you know that a guy named Alex Baker supplied the voice for Martin the Pirate in The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie? Check him out. Other Alex Baker acting credits: Band Manager in I'm in the Band, Ron in The Horrible Flowers, and Agent Pissed in Finding Neo (no, that's not a typo--IMDB calls it a "cross-concept of Finding Nemo and The Matrix"). So there you go.
"al baker." This took me to a blog, but not this one. Still, happy belated birthday to Al Baker's lovely wife Cindy.
"alexander richard baker." Is it possible that there is no reference to an Alexander Richard Baker on the Internet? It doesn't seem possible, but the first thing to pop up is some bill of which "Rodney Alexander, Richard Baker, and Charles Boustany" have become co-sponsors. There are only 54 results, and none of them refer to someone with my full name. Interesting. (And I'm using that term loosely.)
"alex baker," woodstock. Still not me. Some photographer on a web site where they post works of art and you're supposed to click "Digg it" if you dig it. He had zero diggs, so I tried, but you have to create an account, so I gave up. I tried though--I think the Alex Bakers of the world should stick together.
"alex baker," woodstock, illinois. Hey, hey! Here I am. And even my lovely wife will never guess where. She and I are quoted on the "Some Letters We Received" page of the Night Dancin' web site. To those of you who have somehow forgotten, Night Dancin' was the company that DJ'd our wedding. Check out Tom and Diane. Lookin' good, guys. We still appreciate the "personal attention you gave us throughout the planning process" and feel that it was "a pleasure working with you."
"alex baker," "big foot." A 2004 edition of the Big Foot High School newsletter telling people to contact me with questions about the play. I haven't done the play for three years, but at least the actual me is making some appearances on the list.
"alex baker," "ripon college." Did you know that as of May 6, 2002, I was among the Midwest Conference leaders in fewest hits allowed, fewest runs allowed, and fewest doubles allowed? It's true. And also not that surprising since I had probably pitched a total of 1 inning at that point. Interesting story, by the way: We were playing in Ft. Myers for Spring Break when I earned the first save of my college career. It was the bottom of the 8th, the bases were loaded, we had 2 outs, and Gordie gave me the call. I came in and threw a fastball off the outside corner for a ball, followed by another fastball for a called strike. The guy waved at the next two splitters, and I got the strikeout. So I sprint off the field and into the dugout, waiting for us to put up some runs in the top of the 9th, when I turn around and see the team huddled by the third-base line. Turns out that was the 9th inning, and the game was over. I had no idea. So when people tell me that they have a hard time paying attention to an entire baseball game, I forgive them.
"alex baker," "teacher man." Just curious. And yes, it takes you back here. The first entry to pop up? The "some cool links" entry I did a couple months ago. I wonder why that is. Who the heck knows? As I imagined that it might, this exercise has proven that the Internet is a mystery.