A – ADVERTISING!!!!
YOU’RE A WINNER!!!! Garish colors, flashing lights. I had to be careful when closing the window. An errant click would set off a minefield of pop-ups, which could take over my screen and crash my Internet Explorer browser.
B – BANNERS
Like the other girls visiting the site, I was alone by myself, reading.
An advertiser bid for the attention of our our eyeballs at a batch rate. A banner ad loaded, slowly.
As a 12-17 year-old female, my eyeballs were expensive, because my desire to belong to my demographic meant that I no longer saw my face as a whole. My mouth had become Lips, my eyes were now Eyes, and I bought products for my new and negotiable morning routine. Step 1, Step 2, a clumsy choreography of femininity.
The banner ad said, “The Real You is Beautiful. Get a Natural Look with…”
I stopped reading to look in the mirror and touch my face, even though I knew this could trigger a breakout.
C – COLORS
Just as some tree frogs are brightly colored to indicate that they are poisonous and not to be fucked with, I wore a violently green peacoat throughout my teenage years.
I was insecure, but I had my own life to win.