When the heart hurts, the blood boils, and excessive reddish mucus emerges from the nostrils, there seems to be only one recourse: stalk the ex online.
A, undoubtedly deeply scientific survey by people search engine Yasni.com--yes, the folks who encourage you to "Find Yourself On the Web!"--concluded that 50 percent of British people have followed the world of an ex on Facebook or some other self-advertising site.
Because people always tell the truth in surveys (it's a relief to be able to tell someone the truth, after all), I can tell you that 57 percent said they followed the exes out of curiosity, and only 21 percent admitted to feelings of green spleen. A delightful 9 percent, who may indeed enjoy regularly losing themselves on the Web, declared that their motivation was that they wouldn't get caught.
I happen to believe that the Web has done more for British society than perhaps any other. It has enabled a nation whose natural tendency is to write well, tell fine jokes, and treat you face-to-face as if you are a piece of raw salmon lying on a plate in the fridge, to express itself in a way that doesn't require any human contact at all.
The Yasni.com survey supports this thesis. Sixty-two percent of women confessed that they had followed an ex-chap or chapess on their laptop. Only 46 percent of men have bothered to discover that Lucinda is now in a relationship with Jeffrey.
This discrepancy is surely the result of British women being able to articulate far more clearly in person why they are leaving their oaf of a lover ("you're a boor, you wear white underwear, and you smell of mothballs and yeast"), while most British men doing the dumping mutter an excuse through frigid lips or just disappear like a drunken thought.
The women, therefore, have to resort to online "curiosity," while the men, well-known for their aggressive tendencies (not necessarily caused by limited pub opening hours) are moved by their jealousy to stalk their Lucindas (or Jeffreys) night and day, spitting warm blood and warmer beer.
In fact, I am somewhat skeptical that a mere 50 percent of Brits have tried to hex their ex on the Web. Are the folks at Yasni sure that they haven't disregarded a plethora of silent responses from British men?
Everyone stalks their exes online, don't they? At least until they can be sure that the new lover is shorter, uglier, balder, plumper, poorer, duller, or just plain greasier than they are.