Must be something in the water


Another possibility is that it was just a very selective case of amnesia.

So the other day I got an email confirming a conference call coming up later that afternoon. No big deal, that happens all the time, except that in this case I didn’t remember which client was supposed to call me, didn’t have anything marked in my calendar, and didn’t recognize the name of the sender (which also isn’t that uncommon: it’s surprising how often people will delegate tasks like this to their secretaries or assistants without informing anyone ahead of time who the assistant is; it’s like a fun guessing game sometimes trying to match up the emails with the projects.) Takes me a few minutes confusion this time before I figure out that, no, this actually wasn’t meant for me; in fact it’s not even addressed to me (it landed in my gmail account, which is daniel.beck@gmail — but it was actually sent to; sans dot. Hm, weird, not sure how that wound up in my inbox, but it was obviously not meant for me; just to be polite I forward it back to the other Daniel Beck and go back to work.

A couple hours later a flurry of a dozen or so emails come in from the same person: I’ve registered the domain name, here’s the confirmation number; there’s some talk about the hosting plan, the site development, who’s going to write the content?, and incidentally thanks for joining the team, I’m really excited about working with you! — basically it looks exactly like email from any of dozens of small startup clients I’ve worked for over the years. Except I have no memory of signing up with any new clients recently. I mean, I know my sleep patterns have been kind of messed up lately, but have I been negotiating new jobs while unconscious? (Hey, now there’s an idea…)

It takes a couple exchanges of email before we get it sorted out — at first they think I’m their Daniel Beck, correcting my email address; it takes a while before they understand that I’m a completely different Daniel Beck who just happens to also be a web developer. All very amusing; they apologize, I wish them luck on their new venture, everybody’s happy. Just one of those things.

This morning, out of curiosity, I decide to google to see if I can figure out who this other Daniel Beck is who’s apparently in my same line of work. And holy cow, the landscape has changed since the last time I vanity-googled: The german guy with the model car collection has disappeared, and the “Imagine… WINNING!” personal injury lawyer Daniel Beck is long gone. They’ve been replaced by, well, this Daniel Beck, whose main topics are Java and Ruby; this Daniel Beck, who interned at Google last summer, and this Daniel Beck who is both a programmer and a graphic designer, and dabbles in photography. Which sounds, um, sorta kinda vaguely familiar. He even shares my middle initial. Spooky. None of these Daniel Becks appear to be the same Daniel Beck who was involved in the project that started this whole search in the first place.

Maybe we should all team up, start a web design firm together. That would rock.