The Truth about SuperGoo 6/3/01

Dear Mr. Steele:

My friend, Tom Kraemer, is in love with an imaginary woman. Back in February, I loaned him my Mac and a copy of the imaging program SuperGoo. With them he made the face of a "woman". That's all well and good, I suppose, but now he says he is in love with the woman he created and wants to find her real-life counterpart.

While I realize this is pretty odd, he is my friend and I do want him to be happy so I have put the picture of Tom's "dream girl' and the entire story on my website, Cranky Media Guy (www.crankymediaguy.com <http://www.crankymediaguy.com> ).

I'm hoping that you may be able to write about this story so that Tom can find his "dream girl" and have a happy life.

Thank you for your assistance.

Bob Pagani

This might be wrong to do, but for the sake of posterity I'm gonna roughly reproduce the contents of that page here. After all, my Truths stay out here for years and years--and if something happened and that page went away, then I'd have to de-archive this Truth and it'd make a big mess.

"My name is Tom Kraemer.  I created the picture of the girl above on a computer.  She does not actually exist, or so it would seem.  Since creating the picture, I have fallen in love with the girl in the image.  Perhaps this doesn't make sense to you, but I believe I have created the image of my Soul Mate. She is, you might say, my 'dream girl'.  I know this might sound strange, but I have to find the girl who matches this image.
I know my dream girl, my Soul Mate,  is out there somewhere.  Have you seen her?  Do you know her?  PLEASE have her contact me via email at crankymediaguy@aol.com.  My happiness depends on it. Thank you.

"Who is she? She's an 'ordinary' girl - to you - but to me she's beautiful... in heart and in spirit. She's waiting for me to find her.

"Who am I?  I am an ordinary guy.  I'm 41 and I've been divorced for about a year now.  I never thought I'd be doing something like this.  I don't even know much about computers.  I borrowed a computer and a program called SuperGoo from my friend Bob as a way to find a hobby for myself.  After playing with it for a while, I created the picture above.  If anyone had told me that I'd be falling in love with a picture I created on a computer, I would have said they were crazy, but that's what's happened. Now I must find her."

Well ... how to respond.

First of all--and mind you that I'm only saying this part because I have my own butt to cover where gullibility is concerned and not because I have my doubts that your friend actually made this with SuperGoo--but I have my doubts that your friend actually made this picture with SuperGoo. It's true that the eyes have an other-worldly-computer-animated feel to them, as though SuperGoo was used to make them ... somehow ... bigger ... but the bottom-line is that from what I've read about Goo, it is not so easy to work with that a face that realistic just happens.

Maybe I just don't know enough about SuperGoo. Maybe there were some really serious advancements when Goo received it's promotion to SuperGoo. Or maybe, your friend is an artistic genius. Either way, I'm not absolutely saying that it's impossible that the story up to this point is true. I'm only saying that I want to preface my response with my skepticism and get it out of the way.

Oh, and I'll also express the opinion that if I wanted to stage a huge story about meeting my wife in some bizarre way, I might start with a phoney worldwide search for a computer-altered photo of someone I'd already met and was about to propose to.

There. Having vented all of that poisonous doubt, I'll move on.

I can acknowledge the possibility that an artistic genius could so completely imagine their own personal 'perfect face' that they could use a program that designs faces to produce it. Or, one could devote so much time and energy to such a creative endeavor that by the time it's finished, love has blossomed. However, the odds of either of these things happening to a rational person are slim-at-best. Therefore, my first suggestion would be for him to get himself to a shrink, and fast. I'm not saying you're crazy for certain, but the deck is stacked against you, my friend.

But let's say you're not crazy. Let's say for a moment that this is all on the level. It's something of a stretch, but let's go with it just for giggles.

True Love requires more than just a face. Stop your search for this woman immediately. Print the picture and paste it onto the face of a blow-up doll, because that's as good as it's gonna get where this face is concerned, and here's why.

She grits her teeth in her sleep. She laughs like a mule. She demands sex in public places, and becomes furious when she's refused. She tortures small animals to death. She has one or more flaws--and those flaws may or may not be as prominent as the ones I've just mentioned, but they're there. Oh yes. Count on it. Because we're all flawed, every single one of us. The real trick to long-lasting love is finding someone whose flaws match your own, and that's pretty much all there is to it. Face has nothing to do with it. Face gets you through about the first five minutes. A soul mate is with you for a lifetime.

I'm seeing the possibility of two dangers:

1) That you'll fall in love with a face and ignore the very real flaws that will prevent you from being happy.

2) That you'll ignore love when it comes, because the face doesn't match.

The blow-up doll is basically flawless. If you'd like her with shorter hair, or you'd like her to age over time, you can just alter the face a little bit and reprint it. But if you meet the real girl who matches this face, I predict extremely bad things.

And if it turns out she does have a flaw, there are always bicycle tire patches.