Why did I settle on squeezie?

It all began in September 1997. You may like to cast your mind back and recall what you were doing then. Just for your own personal context, of course. It is unlikely that it directly affected the rest of this story.

Aaaanyway, September 1997. I'd just started at University studying for a BA (Hons) English. Imagine, if you will, a bright-eyed, enthusiatic, shiny-haired fresher, determined to do well, work hard and make people proud. She was sitting next to me in the first 'Welcome' lecture.

One of the first things that struck me as a fresher wasn't the medium-sized campus library, the under-sized union bar or the enormous amount of dangerous cyclists there are in Cambridge. It was the computer room. The room where the only sounds were mouse clicking, furious typing and the old dot matrix printer. Having come from a home where the internet was something that other people had and my parents thought was faintly suspicious, the freedom of being able to surf until all I could see were sparkling balls of white light was all too much.

I soon discovered chatrooms (I think the first ones I used were at beseen.com). Gradually I visited more and more rooms. This is usually the point when you find that your 'oh-so-individual' username has been snaffled by someone else. In my case, I'd been using the highly unoriginal Ophelia, which I couldn't use outside of beseen as, to my surprise, there are lots of other people out there who like to identify themselves with that young, rejected, over-caring, off-the-wall bundle of madness.

After realising that Ophelia was a lost cause, I went with Wendy. I am not certain if that was a nod to J.M. Barrie, or because I'd watched too much South Park. I fear it was the latter. Wendy suffered the same fate as Ophelia, much more quickly.

This is where the leaps of logic started.

I've always enjoyed word association, so, as I sat there on that rainy Thursday afternoon in the stuffy computer room, I pondered around Wendy. Tinkerbell was my first thought, and while that username was rejected on the grounds of excessive girliness, the idea of a fairy stuck with me.

In the UK, Fairy is a washing up liquid. It's (supposedly) a 'top of the range' washing up liquid and is one of the most pricey. Being a student, Fairy was beyond me in the affordability stakes, and we would settle for the cheaper options that the local shops had to offer. Among those is a brand called 'Sqezy'. I don't know why so many letters from what is clearly supposed to be 'Squeezy' have been missed out. My best guess is that it's harder to read lots of letters from one fixed vantage point on a curved bottle and the makers wanted to print the letters they were going to use as large as possible.

It's a small leap from 'Sqezy' to squeezie, but that was where I landed.