We are all only as good as our best groupchat, and Amanda Deibert is in one of the best of mine. One day she was telling us about a strange man who had started tweeting at her after she posted about spraining her ankle. As I dug into the guy’s online history, it was weirder than I thought. And it turned out he wasn’t the only one.
I wrote about the whole thing for Vice:
I tweeted at him asking if we could have a private conversation, and he was game. When asked why he was so interested in sprained ankles, he mused that it was “like a damsel in distress thing,” adding, “I had an ex that liked pretending to sprain her ankle. Maybe kinda weird…lol.” When I inquired whether he was hoping each woman thought that she was the first he was tweeting at, he clarified that he was he just deleted the tweets because he was “kinda private.” And, although he said he didn’t expect for anything to happen as a result of the anonymous Twitter interactions, he was very curious if I had ever pretended to sprain my ankle, and if I thought it would be a turn on if I did. He asserted again that his ex “loved it”, and urged me to consider tweeting out a picture. I did not.
I reached out to some of the women whose replies to him were still visible, to see how they felt about their interaction with him. All the women I spoke to had the exact same reaction: none of them could remember the guy at all. “No idea,” wrote one user. “Has he asked me?” Another told me she gets “random stuff all the time”; a third said she didn’t “think twice about it lol.”