Sunday, 10 April 2011

Who's Jane Alexander?

the real Jane Alexander
Someone online recently described me as a ‘60-something Tibetan nun with a 36-year old son and an arthritic hip.’ Kinda interesting. Where on earth did he get that from? So I Googled myself. Absolutely fascinating. Who knew how many weird and wonderful Jane Alexanders there were out there. So, without further ado, let me introduce you to some of my many and various alter egos.

I’m an actress. Well, I knew this already. When I was young I went to see the bloody gloomy movie Kramer v Kramer with a bunch of friends and, as the titles came up, so did my name. ‘Hey, I didn’t know you were in this, Jane,’ quipped one pal, rather loudly. Within five minutes the buzz had gone round the cinema and everyone was looking round. Apparently I am “Angular in features, reserved in demeanor and more-or-less plaintive in appearance.” Good fit?
I’m a bishop. Wow, I didn’t know that. Cool. A bishop in the Anglican Church of Canada. Get those robes.  Actually, I love the idea of being some kind of prelate. In another life, mebbe.

I’m a South African sculptor and an artist. Oh, God, I LOVE this Jane Alexander. Her work is amazing. She is SO damn cool. She is also, apparently, infamous for her silence.
I could learn a lesson or two from this me.
I’m a wedding photographer based in Surrey. I’d show you my images but apparently I don’t allow reproduction.  So this is a generic pic.

I’m a brave woman who was institutionalised for mental illness and treated against my will. This Jane Alexander has written a book called Possessing Me: a memoir of healing, detailing a seventeen year battle with mental illness. Well, well. That one brought me up short. I wondered for a moment if I really had written that book. If you know me (me me) you’ll know that I am a fervent believer in outing the shame around mental illness. So, bravo, Jane Alexander – bravo. You can read more here.

I’m an illustrator and a marketing officer who loves 8th century Irish balads.  Oh good choice, marketing me....  here's a snippet...

"You have taken the east from me; you have taken the west from me;
you have taken what is before me and what is behind me;
you have taken the moon, you have taken the sun from me;
and my fear is great that you have taken God from me!"

I think that’s enough. A few other clicks gave my anti-virus program several jolts of adrenalin and firewalls came hurtling up at the speed of light. So I obviously have a fair few skeletons in my cupboard too. But there you have it. The many faces and skillsets of my online alter egos. Will the real Jane Alexander please stand up?  Sadly, not a Tibetan nun to be found.

How about you?  Ever Googled yourself?  Who are you - as well as being you?  And then again, who is 'you' anyhow?

30 comments:

Jen said...

Ooh, fun. I imagine there's a lot of me if I go by my married name. Might try my maiden name...

Jen said...

Just from the first page of Google results from my married name:
I am two different life coaches (better avoid that line of work then)
I am a professor of linguistics
I am a minor actress who has done Playboy and mostly has roles in her husband's films
I make photo jewellery
I have a blog about my faith
I created the term Riot Grrl

Have decided not to google my maiden name, as I am too overwhelmed with all the things I have(n't) done under my married name. Also, I know if I google under my maiden name I do come up and where is the fun in that!

Sessha Batto said...

Alas - page after page of . . . well, me ;) I am the only one of me - google at your peril ;)

Big Fashionista said...

Ooooh I might try this for my blog next week if you don't mind. Looks interesting. X will obviously link back to this

Yvonne Johnston (Whyjay99) said...

I discovered when I googled myself that I invented an adjustable sports bra. I was an uplifting piece of information supported by a video clip!
I was also somewhat alarmed to discover that though there are hundreds of us sharing the same name in the google search pages, yours truly holds position no.3 by virtue of her Twitter account. I really must tweet a hell of a lot, musn't I?

Eliza said...

Wow you have some great Alta egos:-)
I'll have try it myself.

Sam Pennington said...

Hey, I did this a while ago, and guess what?? Cringingly, I'm a porn star. A-ha ha-ha-ha-ha!!! I kid you not... And believe me, there's no one on this earth who wouldn't pay me to keep my clothes on, I guarantee!

Exmoorjane said...

Loving these replies.... :)
Go for it, BF - would love to see what other people dig up...

trisha said...

Interesting I make jewellery and take photos! Also have gone too soon, my memorial is number three on the list, "really nice caring lady, always there to lend a hand and the room lit up on walking into it" Glad to share the same name with such a wonderful person.
I hope you have found a peaceful place to rest.

Pondside said...

And here I thought there could only be one of you! Take solace in the fact that you really are one-of-a-kind.

Shayne Parkinson said...

Google me, and all you get is: me. :-)

Alison Cross said...

I googled myself a while back - I'm a photographer, and something important at an American University, but, most importantly, I feature in a folk song and I'm a complete witchy bitch *punches air*

Tibetan nun? *impressed face*

Ali x

Expat mum said...

The only other Toni Summers (maiden name) I came across was a guy at university. Funnily enough. years before, a new English teacher at my school was asking our names. When I said mine, she said "Oooh, I've just taught a boy with the same name". Turned out the be the university friend.
And, there's a woman in Chicago called Toni Hargis. She's at least 10 years younger and very glamorous. I found out because she is signed up to some of the same shops' e-mail lists as I am. We have spoken on FB about it and had a laugh. Last month I took the dog to the vet and they pulled up her details. Yes, we even share the same vet.

JOHNSON, Cotswold Hills, England. said...

How fascinating! I am an 18th century explorer that discovered part of Australia and islands in the Pacific. Perhaps I should put in a claim for the land?

By coincidence, I am also an Australian aborigine on Facebook.

I am also, in the 17th century Lord Mayor of Cambridge and in the 16th landlord of our local hostelry which is still called by the same name.

I am also a high court judge that gave out the death sentence 150 years ago for what is nowadays a minor crime.

I am also a surgeon so might be able to get the poor chap back to life again.

The real me? I'm the anonymous bloke from the secret valley in the Cotswolds (& Exmoor fanatic). I'm a garden designer and recent father (not literally, I hasten to add)to seven lurcher puppies. Perhaps, one day I'll come 'out' on Blogger and reveal all!

A great post, Jane, well done!

Johnson

Mrs. Tuna said...

Sadly, I come up a my professional self. Thus explaining why I have to blog under my secret name.

Bluestocking Mum said...

Yes, I'm sad and did this a while back. Debbie White is an American Writer, a New Zealand netball player and also (very exciting) a porn star ;)

xx

PS -
+btw - there's only ONE Jane Alexander.

Rob-bear said...

Never tried the Google bit.

How many Bears do you think would be on Google? Winnie the Pooh, perhaps; another stellar Canadian Bear.

Oh, well.

Ladybird World Mother said...

!!! Giggling still. Tibetan nun my favourite I think, or maybe the sculptress. Or perhaps the rather angular in features actress??!
Googled me, and all I am is some lecturer in USA. God, she's EVERYWHERE. MOST disappointed to find not ONE nun or actress. Fun post. xxxx

Preseli Mags said...

Yours are so interesting! I googled me and got... me. And another me in New Zealand. We've both got two kids. That's it.

My maiden name was more exciting. Apparently I do beautiful blown glass and I was the campaign manager for Hilary Rodham Clinton's 2008 presidential campaign. I paint, I'm an actress and I'm NORCAS chief executive. I'm coming to the conclusion that I was a lot more intersting before I got married...

jaxbee said...

Ha ha! Great post and great comments - love it! I'm a pretty amazing swimmer with the Axholme Sharks (probably a first for someone 5 foot 1 -and 3/4), and I'm a pretty brainy English professor who's written loads of papers of literary criticism. Best is the Urban Prankster. Great because of the mischief caused but doubly great for the proper alter-ego effect - I am the most unlikely urban prankster because I can't bear practical jokes, worry FAR too much about the psychological impact!!!

annemhairisimpson said...

Same as Sessha for me - Google is embarrassingly focussed when it comes to my name :D

hasenschneck said...

I'm a designer living in France apparently (which is a bit odd as that's not unrelated to what I do) and a German actress. Since I have a rather unusual name, I'm annoyed that anyone should have the same name. What's more someone even has my maiden name which is even more unusual. I don't really like Google!

zenandtheartoftightropewalking said...

I ego surf from time to time just to be sure I am not actually the productof my own fevered imagination.
It's mildly disappointing as I appear to be the only Vivienne Tuffnell in the world. I get about 6 or seven pages to myself and then it gets muddled up with Vivienne Westwood and Phil Tufnell.
My husband's google profile is amusing as at some points he gets muddled up with the Nigel Tufnell of Spinal tap fame and one of the facilities that compiles who people are has literally spliced the two of them so that both are crammed into one very confusing profile. At least MY Nigel Tuffnell has no need of a cucumber down the trousers to add extra bulk....!

Jackie Stewart said...

What fun, do you think you're a little bit of all of them? Google search of my name is heavily dominated by motor racing legend alter ego. Somewhat amusingly I've just been done for speeding and will be attending a speed awareness course next month. May take bets on how long it takes before the 'who do you think you are, Jackie Stewart?' wise cracks kick in. I'm also a multi-talented cyber diva from Arizona, a PC repairer from Glasgow and a property realtor from Ohio. Who would have guessed?

Deer Baby said...

Great post - what fun.

I'm a clincal case studies worker for the NHS.

I work in a rustic coffee bar in Washington.

I've written a book on interior design.

I review things on Amazon - I seem to like Nirvana CDs.

One of these is true. You can guess which.

Another Goldfish said...

My most impressive claim is that I was murdered by Jack the Ripper!

Under my maiden name, I am the only one ever.

Vivienne said...

Oh what a fabulous post! That is hilarious. I think there is only one other me, and she is a South African fashion designer. She has obviously achieved more than me in life.

Jobo Pooks said...

Googling myself is just asking for trouble. WTF? I'm a nice guy....LOL

Exmoorjane said...

Great replies here, guys. Huge thanks!

Hey, Jobo - you know who made the original quip about me?

Jobp Pooks said...

Remind me...things are getting foggy....