Creeping in the New Year

By Brian Figurski

I didn’t really set any resolutions this year. I have a habit of breaking things, so I made the conscious effort to not set myself up for defeat. However, my seasonal affective disorder therapist says I need to set ascertainable goals for myself. 

The one item I did note, after being unanimously crowned the victor for multiple end-of-semester awards such as “creepiest moustache” and “most likely to drive a windowless van,” is that it is probably time to drop the whole weirdo shtick. It has very short-term appeal, to say the least.

Now, a week into 2013, I’ve gone over the cliff and snapped my only goal.

I’ve been forced to do a lot of introspective work on my childhood.

“You have a lot of problems,” says Dr. Therapist. “Perhaps one of those is rooted in your days as a young cretin.”

I trust his judgment — he has a degree, while I do not. This is the same respect I expect whenever my forged bachelor’s degree arrives in the mail.

As per ritual each New Years Day, I rested in the calm of my old house next to my trusty hangover bucket. I decided to scour Papa Fig’s photo albums of my repressed youth, and discovered a long-lost friend from elementary school who may very well be dead as of this point, 20-some years later.

His name is Cameron and I have not seen him in a very long time. I could not decide if skulking on the Internet was a good way to locate him.

However, my feline side got the best of me and curiosity triumphed yet again. Is this a creepy maneuver? Stalking a friend time forgot about?

I implored all my well-crafted techniques of stalking to look for him, but this guy is a ghost. I could have found Bin Laden in the mountains of Pakistan before I find my kindergarten classmate.

Facebook turned out to be a no-go for two reasons. The only person I found of the same name was not the pasty white child I remember, but some kind of Hispanic entrepreneur with a trophy wife.

If for some reason Cameron had underwent some kind of reverse Michael Jackson surgery, I refuse to dish out a dollar to this new monetary transaction required to contact outside of your circle of friends. Facebook is trying to nab my credit card digits again and I’m already getting calls from TCF about my overdraft playing Solitaire Blitz. doesn’t have much support for elementary connections. I don’t know if this website underestimated the power of long-term childhood memory, but there’s a real untapped market here. Finding old playground bullies and puttin’ down an adult whoopin’ would be a lucrative service. Revenge of the nerds, indeed.

I even swallowed my pride and returned to MySpace, hoping for a lead on Cameron. MySpace’s stalk search engine is convoluted since the mass transition to Facebook, and I could only find a handful of house DJs and strippers.

I even put a missed connections ad on Craigslist, although I don’t think I could create a fiction story as haunting as those legitimate posts.

I’ll use the paper as my own personal bulletin board – Attention Oakland University students! Anyone with information on Cameron — who was blonde, lived in Sterling Heights and was six years old in 1993 — contact Brian Figurski. You will receive substantial payment in the form of seasonal produce for your support.

I can’t help but feel ashamed of my tactics, even though I have both come up empty-handed and done so in peace. I cannot find my lost friend, and in the process I lost myself.

I have failed the resolution Gods and my overpaid therapist mere moments into the next year. Maybe a new calendar just is not that significant of an event for me to mend all my wicked ways. It’s a work in progress and I will not succumb to madness and try this plight in non-creepy again. I should embrace it and put a down payment on that tinted-out Econoline I saw for sale on northbound Squirrel.

But seriously, someone help me find my damn friend.