04/15/2014 11:06 am ET Updated Jun 15, 2014

Good Auntie Advice: Wipe Your Google Search Clean When You Start Seeing Someone New

Alistair Berg via Getty Images

There was a time not too long ago when, if you met a prospective paramour, the only way to get to know him better was if he called you or if mutual friends curated another "chance" encounter. These days, you can find out everything you ever wanted to know about your crush instantaneously. By putting quotes around his name and adding a random factoid or two, up pop several pages worth of academic achievements, sports accolades, concert check-ins, twitter posts, unfortunate party photos, and awkward family photos; it's a veritable orgy of information.

Depending on how long your search and how deep the dive, your Google search bar could, to anyone other than yourself, appear vaguely stalkerish. On the internets, the line between curious and sociopath is a fine one, so a good rule of thumb is: If your search goes longer than a cursory social media glean and image scan, you've probably crossed into a stalking state. In which case, it's imperative that you "Clear Recent History" located in the "History" tab. Because it might just so happen that the tall, handsome, smart and funny guy you met once comes to your place following a serendipitous second run-in at a party. And he might want to open up your computer so he can show you a short film he'd directed-which, of course, you already knew because you'd Googled him 10 ways to Tuesday. And to get to the short film's home page, he might need to type his name into your Google search bar... and, as he does, his name could very well appear in 20 some-odd search variations in the drop down menu. There then could be awkward silence. And he then might leave abruptly... But this scenario is all purely hypothetical, of course.

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