WHEN I met the blogger Luke Ford at a media party six years ago, I had no idea who he was. I certainly had no idea he would become my cyberstalker. He was just some guy — tallish and thin-ish, with a ruddy face and a disarming Australian accent — who started talking to me. He wore a skullcap atop his brown hair, which was just beginning to thin.
Since moving to Los Angeles to be the managing editor of The Jewish Journal, I had met many of the single religious guys in town, especially those in the small world of Jewish news media. How had I not met him? “Maybe he would be good for my reporter friend Gaby,” I thought. “Maybe I can set them up. He’s kind of cute.”
I didn’t remember what he and I had talked about that night, but I was soon reminded. The next day at work, I told Gaby about him. She rolled her eyes and said, “Look him up online.”
I typed in his name and there it was: the entire text of our conversation the previous night, including my maligning of the newspaper’s top advertiser.
“Who is this guy?” I called out to Gaby.
“He used to cover the porn industry,” she said. “Be careful to go to lukeford dot-net, not dot-com, or you’ll get a million porn pop-ups.” After he converted to Judaism, she explained, he began covering the Jewish community, in particular Jewish media. “Don’t pay any attention to him,” she said.
But it was hard not to. When you’re a journalist, cataloging the words and actions of others, you believe you are granted a writer’s type of diplomatic immunity — inured to being written about, reported on and critiqued yourself. Well, that’s how it used to be, before the Internet.
Luke Ford started writing about me on his blog, with some strange descriptions — including that I always wore skirts, which was flatly untrue.
This story could’ve had a sweet ending. Amy could’ve written: "Well, Luke, you might never guess it, but I miss you, too."
But she didn’t.
Yisroel Pensack writes that Amy used the wrong word in this sentence: "When you’re a journalist, cataloging the words and actions of others, you believe you are granted a writer’s type of diplomatic immunity — inured to being written about, reported on and critiqued yourself. Well, that’s how it used to be, before the Internet."
She meant "immune to," not "inured."