Privileged Tactics III

The Translinternet is a model for dealing with jealousy in long-distance relationships between couples who use different languages in their email and other textual correspondences. It uses an online translator to offer partners more control over their fears and insecurities.

He drove to Ljubljana and left me alone in his house all day. I heard the front door close and went into his studio. His laptop was open, and so was his email.

I went back downstairs and made myself a cup of tea. Then I sat down to read his emails, one by one.

What did he get up to when I was away?

It was all in a language I didn’t understand. I couldn’t even tell if the names were male or female. So I passed each letter through an on-line translator.

That was how the true nature of his relationship with M was revealed to me.


She read all my emails. In return, I requested to read the emails to and from her previous lover, Y, with whom she was still corresponding.

She sent them only after putting them through an online translator.