Stalker.

For about a year now, I’ve had the creepy feeling that I’m being followed. Out of the corner of my eye, in the most unexpected places, I see the same face.

At first, it only happened in very public places, and was easy enough to dismiss it as coincidence. After all, when you have a lifestyle that is condensed in a very small geographical space, it’s not that strange to see the same person at the supermarket and at the gym. After a while, you just accept this person as a normal part of the background of everyday life.

But then I started noticing that they had infiltrated my computer. Every now and then, on incredibly diverse websites, that same face, disguised in a thousand different ways, would be brashly staring back at me.

But the internet is a two way street, and the facade of anonymity that gave my stalker increased boldness in fact gave me the opportunity to identify them.

It was this chick:

Meet Ariane, the overexposed stock image model. This lady has been creeping me out ever since I moved to the Netherlands. Honestly, you find her advertising everything from the ecological supermarket to the gym opposite the train station to City Council meetings. At first I thought she was some hyper-employable Dutch model, but then she took over the internet. Now that I know her face, I see her everywhere. Anytime an article needs a photo of a woman doing something, it seems Ariane has been photographed doing it, almost always joyfully.

I don’t know which I find more disturbing: her omnipresence, or the fact that she’s always really happy.

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