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Happy New Year, blog readers. I haven't done much bike riding lately but am looking forward to getting back in the saddle and racking up the miles in 2012. I hope you will be able to join me for at least a few of them.

In the meantime, I'd like to share some online correspondence I had with a would-be friend. I'm afraid I wasn't totally honest with my new friend, Sophia. But then again, I suspect she wasn't being honest with me, either. I've X-ed out part of her onscreen moniker.

Sophia contacted me through a social networking website with the following message:

WOW!! Thank God i finally contacted you.. I have been looking at your profile for hours and had to register so as to contact you. You look so handsome and lovely than your age. I admit the fact that you are adorable!!.. why are you still single? You can reach me directly at sophia.xxxxxxxx00@yahoo.com...... You can also chat with me directly online via yahoo messenger ( sophia.xxxxxxxxx000) make sure you get back to me on my yahoo so i can send you my pics ok because am getting my profile off now, I think i just lucky to join this site just because of you, so make sure you get back to me on my personal mail or at my yahoo messenger. Am waiting to hear from you soon bye for now Sophia

I quickly replied, reminding her that we are old classmates:

Dear Sophia, Like you, I am delighted to once again be in contact with my old friend. Wow! How many years has it been since we knew each other back at St. Mendacious School for Breach Birth Children? Too many, I'll wager.

Remember the last time we saw each other? You had gotten into some sort of trouble and were about to be paddled by the principal, Sister Mary. I pulled the fire alarm, Sister left the room momentarily and you escaped out the window. I knew you had an escape plan ready and had even dug a tunnel under the school grounds but had no idea you would leave us that quickly.

For years afterward, the rest of us kids at St. Mendacious called you, "Sophia, the Tunnel Queen." Remember, I was "The Scrounger" and could get my hands on just about anything needed for the escape - identity papers, civilian clothing, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, you name it.

What have you been doing all these years after your escape. Inquiring minds want to know! Your old classmate, Plurious J. Aspinwall

Did this jog Sophia's memory? Here is what she had to say about our old times together at St. Mendacious:

hello.. why not add me up on my yahoo messenger on sophia.xxxxxxxx00

send me urs aswel am waiting

Well, I am not going to give Sophia my real email address so I have to come up with a reason why I can't:

Dear Sophia, Thank you for the email and the suggestions. I would love to write to you and continue our wonderful relationship of many years but we must do it on this site only. Bear with me as I explain.

After I left St. Mendacious, I bummed around the country, not really knowing what I wanted to do. I found a job in Pennsylvania at a place called Dunder-Mifflin but only lasted a week. The wacky boss made fun of my weight so I quit. I then moved across the country and found a city job in Pawnee, Indiana but was faced with another wacky boss, this time a woman, so I quit.

Wandering around for months, I got a call out of the blue from our old principal, Sister Mary, who offered me a job as a counselor at the school. I accepted, because I needed a job but also because Sister Mary is NOT wacky.

I don't have a computer at home but I use the one at the school. I am here tonight using it. Shhh! Don't tell Sister. She will not allow Yahoo or any other Internet provider except the Holy Ghost Internet Company. So, you see, Sophia, we must use this wonderful site to correspond. I hope you understand.

Please tell me what you have been doing since you escaped from St. Mendacious all those many years ago.

Your Digging Buddy, Plurious

Alas, it was all too much for Sophia. She left me for greener pastures (aka a new American sucker). I am sad today.