Thursday, September 06, 2001

"True Love" or "To Lie"?

I was surfing safely along, checking out some favourite blogs, when I looked in on Lane and Stu's site, The story the site told was really a modern love-story. They were young, attractive, in love - and separated by the Pacific Ocean. To give an edge and a sense of urgency to their desire to meet each other, he had cancer. Now they were displaying their love and warmth, giving others a chance to contribute some money to letting two true lovers meet.

In The Princess Bride Goldman lets the dead hero moan "true love" as his reason for wanting to return to life, and the hag and wife of the necromancer yells at her husband for not helping, true love being the most noble of all causes. Her husband claims that what he heard was "to lie", and if he helps, he will eventually be cheated. This is the dilemma I experienced as I read the story of Lane and Stu the first time - true love or an inventive hoax?

I linked them in my blog, and commented on this. Soon Jill had seen the post. Since she feels that Melbourne is local (no matter where she is, Melbourne is close) and this should be possible to check, within seconds her fingers flew over the keyboard composing an email to the Melbourne journalist Jenny Sinclair. Jenny Sinclair had seen the blog already, but didn't consider it "a case" until Jill pointed her to my blog, and the possibility that it might be a hoax. At that point the journalist agreed that it was worth following up on anyway, if it wasn't a hoax, then it was a really sweet little human-interest story.

The rest is documented in, and the story can be read at the Age's site. Sadly, we don't get to see the pictures Lane thinks are so great of Stu.

This is an interesting example of how small the world is. When making a little effort - and since Stu had provided a cell-phone-number and was nice enough to agree to the interview - it is actually possible to check on people on the net. Somebody knows somebody - and suddenly the person you want to know something about isn't such a stranger after all. It's also somehow disappointing. As long as they might have been extremely clever con-artists, Lane and Stu had an aura of mystery. Now they are just a couple of cute kids who are hoping that some stranger will take pity on them and support the most noble cause: true love.

As for me? I guess I am more of the necromancer than his hag: when others hear "true love" I hear "to lie".

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