- Aug 8, 2003
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I've been on MC long enough to notice every once in a while, strange occurences happen around here, and some even controversial involving members or former members. Whatever the circumstances are, or whatever has happened, it's safe to say that even MC has its share of unusual mysteries.
I'm going to start off this thread with two specific examples that are actually very, very similar to each other, despite taking place several years apart:
2005 was the year that the MC community really began to thrive, and although there were a number of regular members here before then, most of them slowly began to come out of their shells, and the forum really began to take on its once-beloved communal atmosphere that many of the "Old Timers" (myself included) have so longly missed. All of this could be attributed to one specific member: he went by the handle of That Announcer. TA, as we called him, was one of the most outgoing members MC had, and because of that, as well as his enthusiam for starting up interactive threads such as The Weekly Survey, The Quote Thread, and gaming threads, we all felt more comfortable and at ease with opening up to each other and establish connections among the new friends were were making. In short, he was sort of like the life of the MC party.
TA also wasn't shy about letting us know who he really was: not only an avid Muppet fan (with all kinds of merchandise and playsets to prove it), he was also big into Simpsons and Seinfeld, swore like a sailor, was Canadian, was an atheist, and a DVD enthusiast who dreamed of owning his own DVD store one day. He even had his own ProBoards forum that some of us would hang out on - it was generally a no-rules forum, so we were allowed to be a little wilder in terms of language and content than we are on MC.
He was particularly active in the spring and summer of that year, but then as soon as fall came, something weird happened: the information on his profile had been removed and replaced with nonsense, and he just disappeared from the forum without a trace. Some other members tried reaching out to him privately, wondering what the deal was, only to receive information (that didn't read like his own words) that he needed to sort things out in his private life, and that we need not worry about him. He has never been seen again since.
His sudden disappearance left us all baffled, because it really made no sense. Some theorized that due to his age at the time (he was a teenager) that perhaps his parents were concerned about him sharing so much of his personal information on the internet, and revoked his privileges of being on MC as a result . . . remember, even though MySpace already existed at this point, these were the days before social media was really a thing, and the stigma of the internet was that it was full of predators who stalk chat rooms and message forums in search of victims - so if this was the case, that would make sense. However, as previously mentioned, TA was never seen again. Ever. Considering the passage of time, he surely would be an adult long by now - maybe close to reaching his 30s, so you would think he would return at some point, but he never has. What really happened to him? Why hasn't he returned in all these years? And what was his purpose for being here anyway?
2012 saw an influx of new members around here, one of the more prominent of these new members being Hubert. Hubert was known for not only being a Muppet fan, but also a big fan of the Arthur franchise, from Marc Brown's original books, to the long-running PBS animated series - so much so, that not only was he a frequent contributor to the Arthur Wiki, but he also maintained one of the only Arthur fan forums on the internet known as Elwood City Central.
One other thing that could be said about Hubert as well was that he did not care for drama, and the early New Tens saw a fair amount of drama throughout the MC community, as well as just the internet in general. Because of this, it wasn't uncommon for Hubert to take brief little breaks from MC, much like several other members like LittleJerry92 do.
This turned out to be controversial as well, because like TA, Hubert has never been seen again since: not on MC, not on ECC, not on the Wikis. Nowhere. Unlike TA, however, we were provided with an explanation for Hubert's disappearance: just another one of his mentions of being bothered with the constant drama of the internet, and needing to take a break from it all for his own well-being . . . but that was 2013 (or 2014, I don't quite remember) . . . did he take a break from the internet, or did he take a break from everything, considering the five year passage of time?
As with TA, a few theories have been advanced regarding Hubert's disappearance - one, somewhat morbid theory, has it that Hubert actually had something to hide, but had been caught, arrested, and is now serving time. IIRC, this theory originated within the Arthur fandom, as many of the members from his forum (who have since moved on to forming their own spin-off forum that's much looser and darker) have a rather twisted and warped sense of humor. But it still raises the usual questions: Hubert was such an active member when he was around, then just disappeared without a trace, and has never been seen again since, within any of the fandoms he was a part of . . . so, where did he go? Where is he? What happened to him?
Those are just two specific examples to start the thread off with. There are few other examples I can mention for later times, but these two are the more prominent, infamous, and controversial examples I can think of. I'm sure I'm not the only one who remembers strange things happening around here over the years.