Tag Archives: Blumstein

Tacos With Blumstein

punk-geek
Still Punk Still Geek
samplex

Originally published Tue Nov 3, 1998
From: Gabriel Thy

Hey Baby! When you get a chance, would you please join the ROCC Foundation mailing list by following the template which successfully logged me into the list. I think it only takes the triggering line in the BODY of the Email, and I think the reason I was failing last night was because I had failed to include my Email address in the command line, so if you just want to help test, send a note to ROCC, put NOTHING, or ANYTHING in the subject line, but write the command line: subscribe digest [insert email address] in the BODY of your note. You should receive two notes if successful, a successful subscription note and a list welcoming note.

We'll later try to sign Danielle MacBeth to the listserv. Hey, this is exciting stuff! Webserver fees associated with http://www.earthforum.com are paid in full through December 31, 1998. At that time they will be billed $55.00/month, or if Kevin prefers, a year's pre-paid service will save him 15% off current rates. There are some indications that we are clean with Bret, including SMTP, but I'm not sure. Haven't heard from the TOAD folks yet. Okay, just got off the phone with Glenn. We should have the full operational protocols back in place. Lemme know if you get this test note. Bob's coming over for a taco lunch. Gotta go! Love & lizards...

It's four fifteen and Bob just left. Talk about a three martini lunch! No actually, we drank ice water, ate beacoup tacos, and now we both feel like a nap. I took out a large top sirloin for dinner. Great to have E-mail back. Jennifer Troy took our AMEX number down for billing which I presume starts today. She quoted a flat $250. I didn't query her about the Bell Atlantic charges, not wishing to upset the loveliness of her words: A FLAT $250. Besides, as far as I know, no one at ToadNET really knows where we live except Bret Mingo (and he's not really WITH Toad). He may switch things once he continues to be billed by BA. I say let sleeping dogs lie for the time being.

Just remembered I did put our address on an Email, but as long as Bret and his CORETEL is still the contact for Bell Atlantic I'm not going to worry about it.

Best time ever with Bob, just Bob...

GT

Chameleons Win Pennant, Orange Cap Patrol, Real Estate Wars

chameleons
Through The Eyes Of Chameleons
samplex

Date: Wed Sep 23, 1998 11:01:46 AM America/New_York

We win! Don't know how I came up with eight games left yesterday, but anyhows, we're champs! Good work! How are things in your neck of the woods? I've got so many things to do I don't have time to breathe a free breath, what with my servers offline. Today Sue is calling another company, the one supplying Sue's firm with superchunk T-1 service. We may be able to piggyback into a dynamic situation here. It may take some effort and some extra dollars, but we're pushing forward with the idea. We may keep Bret as backup, or shift most of the cost to Peter, who can't afford it, so Bret may have shot off his foot where we are concerned, but it's one idea at a time here. Don't know all those details yet, but I'm disgusted with the way Bret is charming us.

Glad Wells won the clincher. He'd had such bad luck all year long. losing his perfect game and other shutouts in a C's uniform. But hey man, we did it, despite a few vaporlike managerial squabbles, we pulled together a squad with threads and shoestrings that took the field and whooped this league's collective butt! Another imaginary pennant for my wall. Nice snag with Sampson...

Blum is presently upset that I don't call the cops every night on neighbors I don't hear or see. He does, but he feels so all alone, and...the neighborhood no doubt is trying to go very very bad on us if we can't stop this erosion in its tracks I realize, but I'm just not orange cap patrol material. Been there before, and protect my property and family in other ways that feel more comfortable to me. Bob's realtor says she can only sell his house for a $20K loss at 90K, meaning he has to cough up $20K just to leave credit intact, so he can start again somewhere else less dangerous, less eagerly decaying, so as to raise a baby his wife wants to have. That's not good financial news, no siree, but then we just signed off on that loan based on this house being worth $160K, so might I surmize we're playing the numbers better than he is, despite his infamous business studies in college. I am still forced to choke back laughter at some snide remark he made at my expense a year or so ago which jacked feelings around here for awhile, and will never be forgotten, forgiven yes, but never forgotten by this writer, but I certainly wish him all the better things life has to offer in this pursuit of fatherhood. I think family matters would do wonders for him.

Well, Maria the housekeeper is here. More noise. Later.

GT

Rogue Turkeys, Crippled Pilgrims, Other Fine American Visiting Traditions

norwegian-holiday
Norwegian Holiday
samplex

Date: Mon, 24 Nov 1997 8:19:35
From: Timothy S. Shipman

So it looks as though it's going to be one of those days, at work....slower than death. Did, in fact, receive the message that you called, but got it pretty late, and of course forgot to call you back on Sunday. I imagine it had something to do with the work you had in mind for me.

So did you manage to have a good Thanksgiving?

As for me, I went over and visited with Chris Reed and Lyzbeth for a short time before meeting-up with the folks, to go eat at the White Tiger, a new incarnation in an old restaurant location at 3rd & Mass Av NE. It has been everything from Man In The Green Hat to Cafe Capri, where I used to deliver pizza to Bangcok Orchid to its present moniker...

Tim

TYPE IN A SUBJECT HEADING IF FOR NO OTHER REASON THAN TO SYNCHRONIZE, oops, sorry for the shouting that this ALL CAPS typing infers, but as I was saying, than to synchronize with all the other notes lining the mailboxed and defrocked worlds of chat and the chatted on my hard drive and yourn.

Civilized manhood truly soaks up the free time. It’s a good thing in the long term if I can fake having plenty of it, time that is, not civilized manhood. Maybe I’ve got that mixed up. Depends on which side of the clock you’re standing behind and whose civilization we’re fighting for…
Shared a pretty decent meal and some idle conversation to make Thanksgiving par for a small group of bogeys that we've reluctantly become. Epstein came over (I hadn't seen him since your birthday bash at the IRISH TIMES a few marches ago), and we plus Allie and an old college chum of BB's named Kevin Kelly burst our collective guts next door. I'd churned together a rather nifty pineapple dressing which Bob stuffed into his 12 pound turkey to complement the quite meaty well-received crab casserole I almost finished up for breakfast this morning. To top it all off Blum served pumpkin pie and whipped cream he'd mashed together from scratch, yes, from scratch both the pie and the whip, including a superb flakier than storebought crust. And I don't even like pumpkin pie, but Bob's is the best I can imagine. I think somebody cracked a pilgrim joke. A few Ben Franklin fuck and fart proudly references. Got to love the literate crowd that breeds around Blum. A belch and a rollover. Some beer. Some wine. Some after dinner coffee. It was pure November cosmos, whimper, laugh tracks, and rust. I should have brought over one of my poinsettias to kick the table appeal up a notch, but it wasn't my call, and Blum doesn't take too kindly to suggestion, not mine anyway...

Later Epstein followed me back to the Dollhouse, hijacking my computer for the next couple of hours to web wonk before squeezing directions out of me in dogged pursuit of TRAX for hetero night, the ever evasive holiday lay, and mad rocker life at 29. I then doubled back over to Bob's for another slice of pie and a few purge scenes on the telly before yawning back out the door again, glad the holiday slurf was finally over, done with, and dutifully repackaged as recent past only a couple of crude snapshots can truly bring back to life. I should have insisted on a group fotoplasty, but in weakness of will I didn't.

I snag Sue from the airport tomorrow afternoon, early evening actually. Bob and Allie tie the gordian on December 5, Friday. Bob Dylan at the 9:30 Club later that evening. The following Monday I wobble into jury duty. Civilized manhood truly soaks up the free time. It's a good thing in the long term if I can fake having plenty of it, time that is, not civilized manhood. Maybe I've got that mixed up. Depends on which side of the clock you're standing behind and whose civilization we're fighting for...

GT

Today In History

emperors
If It Matters At All
samplex

Originally published on September 19, 1997

Thanks for all the little notes you've wafted down this way lately. Read them, bookmarked accordingly, grinned when our own thoughts have been replicated in the "real" press, et cetera. Been busy finishing off the A&F site. Now I move into the promotion and maintenance phase. A six-month contract. I expect that the Always & Forever site will pay a few dividends. At least, there's yurnover, therefore uopdates, although I'm throwing in two hours of updates a month in the $55/month contract. Sue's going out to Hector's farm today to load AOL on his Performa out there, and also to begin formulating his farm site by gathering up horse pics.

News. Peter Burris is moving into the Dollhouse basement next weekend for a season or two, the Sunday following my 42th birthday. Yes, happy and all that. We'll be hosting a few a quiet gathering after work on Friday. Blumstein celebrates his last day at Columbia Research on the same night. He hasn't responded to my E-mail inviting him and Allie over, but I reckon he might have other celebrationary options up his sleeve. We still haven't talked since that night of the pokerfaced airconditioning mishap a month ago.

We plan to throw a lot of cash and sweat at the basement as you've already been made aware. Timing is gonna be tight to get all the damned ducks in a row, but everybody involved is psyched to making it work, and so Peter might be camping out for a few days or a week until we cut the ribbon. This has all been rather sudden. A year ago I would have never dreamed that PHB would welcome or be welcomed in this house on this sort of long-term familiar basis.

Time does tend to change our perspectives for better AND worse, n'est pas? Karen may have landed us a huge trucking company account, but it won't kick in until late October as the owner puts the finishing touches on a multimillion dollar startup company. It's not in the basket yet, but is almost a sure thing, as he's an ex-and-wouldbe-current beau. She's really excited about her new role as GSIS sales rep. So are we. And best of all, she's no mirror mashed maniac like the rest of us. She's a levelheaded bubbly sort, who just has too many potential contacts to not exploit. So we've all stepped up to the plate looking for that fat pitch down the middle.

By the way, Karen gave Pitch a major bitching over that condescending kissoff note he wrote me, from her own volition. She told Sue about it later. Pitch had CC'd the note to her. Apparently she read it the same way I did. Sue's often characterized Karen as not being too awfully smart. I haven't been around her that much, but she continues to impress me with her downhome country wisdom. She's nobody's fool. She loves Sue, and is always cratcheting Hector about undervaluing Sue. And her mother loves me, in Karen's words. Now isn't that just gravy for an old roast like me. We have suddenly found ourselves bright-eyed and bushy-butted, primed for history, the feast.

And just think, not too long ago . . .

GT

There's Nothing Straighter Than True Plumb, Bob

friendship-wars
The Friendship Wars
samplex

Originally published Aug 19, 1997. Italics Steve Taylor, plain text mine.

Damn. I just clicked on an iMote page, and it is all twisted. Wrong graphics in the wrong places, and another graphic skewed. Gotta go investigate. Maybe Bob's right. My life ain't life. Maybe he'll let me join in his weekly WWII strategy board game, or watch his stockpile of Japanese anime videos. Now that's life. I know I'm just being petty here, but it really burns the bone that among friends and neighbors every choice one makes is shit, and Bob has always done that to me. My poetry is bad. My writing makes no sense. My web work is not life. Even after all the GT vs. SET fires belching in the belly, and that most recent flamewar certainly left scars, I can at least say that you have always encouraged me in my struggle to express my loneliness and insights through writing and creative images and with the technical additions of web producing, you've been my only true visitor. I don't know what that says about you, but thanks anyway. And again, congratulations on your new aspirations. You are indeed cock of the walk when it comes to nailing job interviews.

You are quite welcome. And thanks for letting me know. It does mean much to me to have some positive impact out there—and it is nice to keep in contact from here in the PA void. I'm glad that I now have had time to read, write (a bit, anyway), surf, relax...and actually think about what works, what matters, what the hell...I kept busy and manic enough in DC to keep myself from realizing how unhappy I was—AOL caught me on the downside for a while, so I just kept fighting at Howrey, thinking that I could make well-enough work into something great. Hah! Oh well, looking back on the last few jobs I had—ones for which I've been envied by more than one person, I see that I was fooling myself to ever accept them. I had forgotten that I could do more than be a lackey for underskilled, Peter Principle poster children who didn't care about the product but had just chosen a career and insisted on sticking with it without truly caring about what they were doing.

They simply become too easy too soon and don’t allow room for the type of growth and development that we need to keep breathing. iMote and Scenewash (and others projects of past and future) can give you that. I’m hoping that I will end up webmastering Fox Chase Cancer Center, and that the job will have enough challenges to keep me interested, honest, and sane. For now I wait for the call from Philly. Right now, I mow the lawn.
But each time I made the mistake of falling into jobs when I needed the money and was able to rationalize my way into accepting what I knew would wear out soon. Then I was able to add something to the job to make it seemingly great for a while. Then they didn't want a star, just a good team player. Well, I can be a good team player, but when I'm being asked to wash the uniforms and the team truly needs me in another position...enough sports metaphors...As I'm feeling some of that DC-bound bitterness resurfacing, let me bend this back to a less combative reality: I made some terrible judgement calls. But at the time, there weren't any better options I could have seen. I was too blinded by my defense mechanisms. And, even with the confidence I was often able to exude, for a period of time there, I didn't truly believe in myself and my abilities to do anything and do it damned well. I know that I can put together any web site, any magazine, any promotional campaign or technical budget. I just might have to work at it.

And that's what these McTech/McMedia jobs I've had have not given me (and would not give you or anyone else with vision and drive). They simply become too easy too soon and don't allow room for the type of growth and development that we need to keep breathing. iMote and Scenewash (and others projects of past and future) can give you that. I'm hoping that I will end up webmastering Fox Chase Cancer Center, and that the job will have enough challenges to keep me interested, honest, and sane. For now I wait for the call from Philly. Right now, I mow the lawn.

But now, I've gotta attend to those pesky HTML brats. Keep it clean, and the dirt will follow anyway. Busy with beaver and loaded for bear...strange how those epiphrases just jot themselves down along with the mustard and relish of a personality mirage. Lynn has not responded, although I certainly had no idea the phrase was anything but a toss-off. Tell me how it goes. I presume, it's like the "playing it by ear" and "that's my story and I'm stickin' to it" SET tune of the month. I can hear it already reverberating off the whispering pines of friendly Pennsylvanian platitudinal grace. Look forward to the update, but frankly, I think you and I are the only ones who "get" most of our poetic hucksterism. Occasionally Bob in good mood is generous with a Boblike compliment with adjectives like hip, post-modern, whacky, subterranean sprinkled in to authenticate a true Bob true grit compliment, and they certainly have increased over the years, but like Bracken, most often he's just a little quick to dismiss and a little slow to hammer out the dots, plumb the heights, and probe the depths but like all of us, prefers to hear his own voice than those of his neighbors.

GT

Those imps of HTML will need some reintroducing to me—it's been a while since I've actually dug into code. Gotta go back to the basics a bit—save that source, localize those graphics, and start
playing with other folks' designs. Tables, frames, imagemaps, CSS...it'll take me a while, but I'll get back there.

Peace. Love. Digital Neighbors.

SET

Get Reminded Of The Time I Tossed Chickens Into The Sea

Gabriel64y
Gabriel Thy, Child Harolde's
samplex

Originally published on August 19, 1997

Sueball celled in from Saint Thomas last night before reboarding the liner. She & her Aunt Lou are a fog of champagne sizzle, two larks clinging to a swizzle stick. I could smell the fun on her breath from here. It's brutal without her at home for this long, but you know me, I'm soaking up all the quiet I can. I miss her, but it'll be Labor day until we baby dance together again. With that clanging in my left ear I've carried since London '92, my days and nights pass eerily as if in the dark woods or high farm, bull crickets and the silence of nothing but the fan. Alone, no pressure to succeed, no terms of regret, no inkling of failure or gestures of redoubt. Hints of a new routine, say for instance an evening walk around the neighborhood, a dip into the city, a relaxing drink in the backyard nirvana will probably not happen. She tells me I don't know how to relax. I tell her she is correct.

No, I've stayed inside avoiding the heat, but I've noticed these inner stirrings. Today is twenty degrees cooler, but even so, I hack away at this terminal, working, planning, fooling myself I'm living life with some great plan to succeed. Me, I just do what I can, and try not to aggravate or be aggravated by every whim and weasel this world has to offer. Guess I'm still stewing over Blumstein's bluster because I don't know where it came from, life?

Life is not always a home-brew. Life is what happens to you when you are busy making plans for something else. You said that before, but that's the steel and the gristle of it. Nothing's any more clear than that. Now the chicken farm is gone. My mentor (of hard work) has been dead for ten years, and the farm I helped build, torn down. Life? Yeah Bob, lemme sit at your feet, such wisdom.
Life? That word just swooped in on me and I cannot fathom why or how he intended to mean it other than demeaning me. But, I'm way off the path of solitude when I let Bob crash my peace. He gave a blanket apology. Back to the crickets in my bad ear, the purr of the fan at my feet, and the allure of the Internet where anybody can be somebody and everybody can be nobody, but none of us can ever know the difference until we do the work.

I associate this aural reverb with Lofton Creek FL, the chicken farm days, the cabin, the unbelievable stench of forty thousand birds that one learned to ignore, the long lonely weeks without ever seeing much less talking to or being heard by another human being, my daily summer skinnydipping with a bar of floating ivory soap, vegetarianism for the most part except the hand-picked smoked birds the landlord had stashed in the chest freezer, the daily diet of cheese and grapes and rye bread, the flood of imaginary lovers, the hurricane waters, and I busy, by lamplight writing my first serious, pressure poems of a lifetime, poems I still read with enthusiam today (aching to plug online), those ten mile hikes into town, Dylan Dog who looked and acted just like Nickel Dog, getting buried in three hundred year old literature checked from the library, Will Durant, and a steady feed from PBS.

I was 24-25. Young, thin, even skinny. Long sun-bleached blonde hair to my shoulders. Some say I looked like Jesus. Others John Lennon. Without the beard, Peter Frampton. Full of zest, vigor, and the peaceful easy feeling the Eagles sang about. Life is not always a home-brew. Life is what happens to you when you are busy making the bed you will sleep in tonight. We've heard all this wordplay before, but that's the steel and the gristle of it. Nothing's any more clear than that. Now the chicken farm is gone. My mentor (of hard work) has been dead for ten years, and the farm I helped build, torn down. Life? Yeah Bob, lemme sit at your feet, such wisdom.

Have you heard the recent uproar about the thousands of fish sporting nasty abcesses on their smelly scales first in North Carolina, and now the schools that prowl the Chesapeake? After nearly a year of mystery, these problems are being blamed on chicken farm runoff, a feathered excrement tragically high in nitrogen and ammonia gases running off into the streams and creeks straight into the ocean waters. That's some high octane chicken gas that survives the plunge into the sea. Chickens. Who knew back then...

GT

Pardon My Air Conditioning, Mister Miller, It's a Nightmare

chapstick
Chapstick
samplex

Originally published on August 19, 1997

I see someone else has prominently displayed "dot com" in its logoyle besides this nationally fried neat animal fat autodidact from SE cuz dat's where she's at, not that anybody around me is noticing. Clever data trends and three hundred pound knee bends both get in the way of my originality, but to bitch or not to bitch is not the question, nor is it wrong to defer to scientific parlance in stating that originality in the age of Gordon Moore has a much shorter shelf life than it did in the purloined and scarlet days of Rimbaud and Henry Miller? Thank you, I'll have my ice cream, now, two scoops. Vote Republican you blue dogs because Democrats are full of real mischief, not the flag waving kind, but the block burning sort, and you can take that literally, bravely on your way to the bank, ye peace merchants and street crawlers. Nobody's as smart as they think they are, but nearly everyone is smarter than the erudite pretend to benefit them.

Meanwhile, in other breaking news from the SE sector, Blum juggered my naught the other night by telling me that iMotedotcom wasn't life. He didn't elaborate, and that was the only time the web or my "life" was mentioned. I immediately spun off a Pontius Pilatian rant about life, what is life, everybody's got something to say on that topic, like Bracken for instance who's just written a book on the philosophy of what is life, and that kid has it all distilled down to the sexual conquest. Geez—I said. Bob immediately confessed that I had a point and we knew we had said our fill. All of this confusion began and ended in the last five minutes of Friday's poker night which was an intrusively hot & sweaty hoot.

At 9:52 AM -0500 8/18/97, rblumstein@columbiaresearch.com wrote:
> Sorry I started the pointless argument for the end of a otherwise good
> evening. I guess I was feeling ironic and the heat and alcohol weren't
> helping. My girlfriend said I shouldn't invite poeple over when it's
> so hot, not until at least I provide more air conditioning. I started
> the evening with 11 rolls of quarters and wound up with 3 (one of
> which Bob gave me). I was overall ahead now I'm dead even for all the
> poker played in recent years. What goes around comes around except for
> Bob Chisholm who nearly always wins Big. He's good to play with since
> he bluffs and generaly challenges everyone to their limits and beyond.
> Christine who usually goes home with empty pockets has since become a
> more seasoned player and made a little extra change. Hope you made
> some money, all the money flowing out of my coffers was enough to make
> everyone a little extra pocket change...

Pointless, Bob? Hardly. It seems you made or tried to make several [dagger] points. As it turns out I was particularly intrigued by your phrase, "well, that's not life."

But yes, I had a decent evening while gathering a few more twigs for the huge bonfire that has become my, uh, lifelessness. Powers of the phrase and the phrasemakers sort of thing. Counted my quarters the next morning. I was a buck and a quarter shy of exactly the fifty dollars I brought to the table, and was lamenting my losses until I remembered the five I kicked in for the pizza, so it turns out I actually soaked up a few bits on the plus side of the gambling ledger. Thanks for having me.

Noticed you escaped early from la casa del Blum during both of those 102 &105 degree recordbreakers this weekend. I took the liberty of retrieving the ice we never used and my white cap I'd left, letting myself in with key rather early Saturday morning. Now they're calling for temps to plunge into the fifties tonight. This kind of climate warp is liable to give even the outdoor bug battalions a nasty headcold.

Maybe Bob's right. My life ain't life. Maybe he'll let me join in his weekly WWII strategy board game, or gaze dumbly at his stockpile of Japanese anime videos. Now that's life. I know I'm just being petty here, but it really burns my bone that among this crowd of friends and neighbors every choice one makes is shit, and Bob has always done that to me. My poetry is bad. My writing makes no sense. My web work is not life.
The game went went on rather pleasantly until after one. I called it quits. Tony had already left. Allie had gone upstairs to snooze, as had Stefan even earlier. Blumstein, Chisholm and Christine packed it in after I announced my withdrawal. The two NoVa tommyknockers took off. I was headed for the backdoor when in summation of a pretty decent evening I stepped in it.

Chisholm had been complaining about the heat and sweat on the cards all night, but his handsome well-articulated suave protected him (and where was his sweat?) from several rounds of most iffy behavior, but I'll leave that to another note. You see, I commented about air conditioning. Bob responded with too expensive. I countered if I had an extra two hundred a month that's where I'd spend it instead of socking it away for some millionaire old age roost. He recoiled by bringing up his business school classes and the fact that I never went there. I suggested he visit my website once in a while to find out where I stood on the issues. He insisted didn't know what I was talking about. I said I've never tried to lord anything over on him, that I was just making some innocent comment based on my own personal foils toward creature comfort in the now rather than later. He said he never lorded anything over on me. I said he just did. He said he did not, when? I said just then, by lording his so-called business credentials over mine. Then he made the comment. Yes, the comment. The comment was iMotedotcom, that's not life.

Oh well, we are a swelled bellied bunch of braggarts and inferiorities aren't we? Narcissistic to a fault. Ego-entrenched warriors for the self, and nothing but the self.

Occasionally, Bob in occasional Bob good mood is generous with a Boblike compliment with Bob adjectives like hip, post-modern, whacky, and subterranean, sprinkled in to authenticate a true Bob true grit Pennsylvanian Catholic-Jew ex-military compliment, and they certainly have increased over the years, but like Bracken, most often he’s just a little slow in mashing the dashing dots that bring us to a bridge where an awesome choice must be made, too quick in tugging the expandable knots that keep us in place like a string on parakeet’s paw...
Oh, shallow shellfish on a stick, I just clicked on an iMote page, and it is all twisted. Wrong graphics in the wrong places, and another graphic skewed. Gotta go investigate. Maybe Bob's right. My life ain't life. Maybe he'll let me join in his weekly WWII strategy board game, or gaze dumbly at his stockpile of Japanese anime videos. Now that's life. I know I'm just being petty here, but it really burns my bone that among this crowd of friends and neighbors every choice one makes is shit, and Bob has always done that to me. My poetry is bad. My writing makes no sense. My web work is not life.

The Friendship Wars. Even after all the GT vee SET fires belching in the belly, and that most recent flamewar certainly left scars, I can at least say that you have always encouraged me in my struggle to express my loneliness and insights through writing and creative images and with the technical additions of web producing, you've been my only true visitor. I don't know what that says about you, but thanks anyway. But now, I've gotta attend to those pesky HTML brats. Keep it clean, and the dirt will follow anyway.

Busy with beaver and loaded for bear . . . strange how those epiphrases just jot themselves down along with the mustard and relish of a personality mirage. Lynn has not responded, although I certainly had no idea the phrase was anything but a toss-off. Tell me how it goes. I presume, it's like the "playing it by ear" and "that's my story and I'm stickin' to it" SET tune of the month. I can hear it already reverberating off the whispering pines of friendly Pennsylvanian platitudinal grace. Look forward to the update, but frankly, I think you and I are the only ones who "get" most of our poetic hucksterism.

Occasionally, Bob in occasional Bob good mood is generous with a Boblike compliment with Bob adjectives like hip, post-modern, whacky, and subterranean, sprinkled in to authenticate a true Bob true grit Pennsylvanian Catholic-Jew ex-military compliment, and they certainly have increased over the years, but like Bracken, most often he's just a little slow in mashing the dashing dots that bring us to a bridge where an awesome choice must be made, too quick in tugging the expandable knots that keep us in place like a string on parakeet's paw, and far too smug in mugging the transliterative shots across the bow of language and its antecedents like most of us who prefer listening to our own voices—up range down range jostling never the home range—than those of our neighbors who might prefer hang gliding the flirty bird just for the feasible and fanatical fun of it.

Word. Whatever. After all is said and done, and my Norseman's hair is brushed back into its rightful place, the truth is I still prefer listening to Killing Joke than the sound of my own inertia.

GT

Bucking The Will To Dominate

cicatrizll
Cicatrizil
samplex

Originally posted Mon May 26 16:09:27 1997

As per my last note, Steve, I just want you to get well, so that we can finally collaborate on a more mature level than the past has allowed us. But as for dialing you up in sunny Pennsylvania, just to shoot the bull, I don't know what I would have to say. Just get well man, just get well. Let's work together. Let's quit all this fantasy crap, and get down to the real business of selling web design and maintenance services, something we both fantasized about as far back as November 1995 when you first sniffed out GeoCities.

It's your move, Steve. So let's JUST DO it, or at least get out in front of this trainwreck and pull the damn plug on the partnership because there's no sense in bucking the will to dominate. If that's what you want to do then measure up to it. Otherwise, you just aren't.

It's been raining all morning, but the sun is out now, it's not too hot or too cold, and Bob is back from Pittsburgh with girlfriend. Plans are we will be grilling shortly.

What motivates me to make my mark this way is unclear.

GT

Background Check, Please

Light Unto The Nations
Light Unto The Nations
samplex

Originally published on January 31, 1997

And the second phase of literary hiccups...

Yesterday over the telephone, I was drilled by an investigator doing a background check on Bob Blumstein who is some government clearance for a new job he is seeking. I imagine I did a decent enough job deflecting with humor the questions I felt uncomfortable answering for fear my take on truth would hamper Bob's ambitions. The one corner I got backed into concerned Bob's emotional status. I had no choice but to mention his diagnosis and bouts with chronic fatigue syndrome and the medication. I did not mention prozac by name, and the investigator was surprisingly soft on followup in this area. A few one liners I tossed around included:

Question: something along the lines of does Mr. Blumstein strike you as a solid neighbor, easily getting along with others...

GT response: "Well, we've disagreed on things every now and then, but from your own investigative prospective, I don't know whether this reflects poorly on Bob, or me."

Question: something along the lines of has Mr. Blumstein shown any signs of possible emotional breakdown or instability...

GT response: "Well, as I am not a trained psychologist, I certainly am not qualified or comfortable answering such questions with any sort of authoritative voice..."

Question: something along the lines of do I think Mr. Blumstein would be a good security risk...

Answer: "Mmm, again I know nothing about governments clearances except that Bob has occasionally mentioned in passing, of course without specific detail, other accesses and clearances he has won over the years in his job as an Air Force reservist, and I suppose other job hurdles in the past..."

I was asked maybe 40 questions, some overlapping in theme, but only the direct medical liability question led me to a response that I felt could possibly be held against him, although at the end of the interview the investigator apprised me of the Privacy Act of 1983, and how Bob could request a detailed report on this interview and would discover that I had given him favorable marks. But yes, of course this is what the investigator would say to me, so I wonder how much damage my candor and my obvious deflections (as opposed to a drone-like apotheosis) might have done to his chances of winning his clearance, should all Bob's other cronies not play the rat's game.

Overall, I was articulate and calculating, punching through with wordplays and jokes as well as honestly suggesting that Bob is as straight a Joe as I've known. I counted on forthrightness as opposed to monotonic one word responses as a plus. Bob had given Sue the chore of this interview, but she never returned the phonecall after the interviewer came to the house leaving a note I found when checking the mail that day.

I must have slept in flu lethargy straight through the knocking. On the phone, the investigator, after asking for Sue soon turned his attentions to me, and offered a choice of phone or face to face interview. After acknowledging my sickness and joking if he could bear with me, I accepted the challenge, and relieved Sue. She was grateful, and I think Bob would be as well. I believe, despite the one problem area, I executed a more than adequate defense of Bob's integrity.

Question: Have you known Mr. Blumstein to indulge in illicit drugs at any time?

GT response: "Bob has stayed emphatically clear of this sort of indulgence."

Question: Have you known Mr. Blumstein to have a problem with alcohol?

GT response: "Bob is somewhat of a beer connaisseur. He brews his own beer as a devoted hobbyist, but I certainly would not characterize Bob as a problem drinker."

Question: something along the lines of do I think Mr. Blumstein is an honest man, a man of integrity...

GT response: "To tell you the truth sir, Bob is as honest a person as I know, his integrity impeccable. We joke and call ourselves the radical middle, a return to sanity.

And on and on...

Enjoy the rest of the Bracken as biographer commentary. And let me know what you know of these top secret drills. They certainly breed paranoia and intimately define the faith of friendship in terms I know I must address in "the ouster of Tim" affair, so catch ya later...

GT

Pulp Exhaustion Spatially Explained

sop
Standard Operating Procedure
samplex

Bracken just spilled outa here. Using MacLink Plus to convert his DOS MS Works pages into Mac MS Word docs. We added an extra step taking his Works to Word 2.0 DOS, but we've been losing quite a bit of formatting, and Len isn't looking forward to handsetting it again. By staying in Works, we are hoping the trip straight to Mac Word 5.0a will take hours off our stress times and put smiles in all the right places.
Hey Landry, just a short one to tide me by. Hope your spirits are just where you want them. I'm afraid my friends are beating me up again with their shit for sherlock behaviors. Tim's hanging on by a thread. I asked Steve to stay away. Jennifer will be arriving Saturday for a romp until January 3rd. I wonder how much of her delightful self I will be able to gratify without cracking under the strain of the "oh so coy" gone beserk! Thanks for the card, and merry mucking to all concerned. Hey, I've got Jack's autograph stashed somewhere in a stack of cards. Why would you need it?

I loathe bitterness in any creature, but why do these [punk] actors continue to abuse my natural good humors? What am I doing about it? I guess I'm trying to shake free with an abrupt refusal to step into their fly splat worlds anymore. I gain nothing but aggravation working either side of the equation as I have been known to do, neatest of the neat, noisiest of the noisy. But day after day, year after year, I am forced to choose between an "in my face boredom" and the "sheer terror of the bingeing without consequences".

But the consequences DO EXIST, and even now the Tattooed Elephant is buckling under the weight of these riotous friendships with little or no solid justification, just the dead weight of momentary blather sticking to our ribs. I'm sick of it all, exhaustion confirmed, and them who have or will continue to pursue it...

(and the buzzard winks trying to get a piece of her. She's enjoying the attention, but she's not as easy a target as they might beg to think, and will make them work for every inch.)

We are supposed to be taking a limo out for New Year's Eve, courtesy of Skip Bafalis, a partner at Sue's firm. Two potential complications: no driver has been found, and Skip the owner was rushed to the hospital Christmas Eve, spent the whole next day having exploratory tests run to no conclusive end. He was released sometime yesterday. Still no solid lead on a driver, but bangedup Sue has a maybe or two up her sleeve.

Steve was originally invited, well, he sorta presumed he was invited by default, but last weekend he brought much chaos to this house, and has perpetuated it by further examples of his mute reckonings. Say anything, do nothing. A mile a minute flows off his tongue, uh, followup, what's that?

But neither Sue or I are in our middle to late 20s, or even 30s. Get a grip people, get a gashwhipping grip upon yourselves, and know that you are talking to someone who knows what it is all about. This is a private home and studio apparently shy of staff beyond the principles. Keep the puns in the pants. I can't care anymore. There is no other interpretation.
Tim has been cashing in on street crack, bringing crack dealers and cracked friends to the D-house. A fucking idiot, pimping that shit here after I had made it clearly an uncool deal! The handwriting's in the till that I will probably smack him with the pink slip by early spring if not sooner. He doesn't want to leave, and he doesn't want to lose his lifestyle. I can't blame him, but nobody can plug Tim's life better than himself. And you know me, "I'm a very possessive asshole. I'm trying to bring order to this mess I call my life of peers and all I get from this friendship ring is a future filled with agitation, no no no no peace essence at all."

I am scheduled for a battery of five or six tests in the new year, including brainwave and brain physiogomy scans. Full blood work. Doctor seems to think my problems are neurological in nature, neck and nerve pinchings rather than a brain tumor, but I'm testing the whole noodle kaboodle to rule out the latter. Brain cancer is dropping folk in high numbers in the late 90s it seems. I may or may not be one of them. Most relative I suppose is mother's younger sister Kitty, who died in February at 52 of said vermin.

So all in all, things are rather normal with the Dollhouse ground zero gang. Abused by friendship, alienated from most of the family where it really counts, I only find comfort, despite our plethora of well-inventoried flaws, in my baby baby baby sue...

Lynn, why do I despise the noise when so many seem to embrace it? The problem is not the noise and chaos itself. That I handle quite well in dosages I administer to myself with the greatest of ease. Achievements GT are legendary. But I know I can no longer riot as persistently as this class of 1996, and I want out. Of course Sue loves Tim, Tom, Steve, Jack, Mouse and whomever no less than I, and she DOES LOVE rent day, but something has got to give, me or the outside world. And she said three times denied, three wishes granted. I mean, what is the meaning of meaning if we scat in our own master's house, and act like, uh, catch ya next time, anywaze?

Many times I have asked folk to arrive on a date and at a time I specify. Many are the times when playing it by ear is the only game friends will play. Well, I've rolled that carpet over. I've had my fill with self-gonads at the expense of my own overwhelming desires that I continue to put aside in order to entertain yet another stiff torture at the wiles of the wolfpack.

That’s the way it is among all of us, bound by handshake uselessness & special moting, too offcentered to get much more done than self obliteration one adult beverage after another, word gaming for prizes void in several states, and ogling sessions that defy a national screening; we, the slurfish leisurely class, spamming the spectacle dot dot dot.
I played the idiot punk quite fantastically. That role is a part of me, now. The world will not soon forget that part of me, but geez Louise, this ain't a bar, or a hotel anymore, although I'm not exactly sure when we were penciled in for those tours of duty, it is certainly a reality checkpoint. But neither Sue or I are in our middle to late 20s, or even 30s. Get a grip people, get a gashwhipping grip upon yourselves, and know that you are talking to someone who knows what it is all about. This is a private home and studio apparently shy of staff beyond the principles. Keep the puns in the pants. I can't care anymore. There is no other interpretation.

Do I sound mad as a Mississippi monk on morphine? dear pets? After all these words of banishment I now contemplate staying home in exile even should limosine wax available, wave as the gag orders go their own chauffered way, as I stay back to protect my dwindling investments and bruised heels, aching heads and breaking shoulders, keeping my own puns to the grindstone...yuck what a miser of energy, spirit, and tailwind. But conservative reckoning is a day I must endure, and will embrace as a grand homecoming, despite all the kidz who would steal my middle age thunders kicking me in the shins when it's my pain they can't stifle.

Bottom line: I am tired of being treated as if I were both deaf and mute as my memory reviles and reputes the waste of conversation which never engages real meaning for longer than any particular drunk and hangover harry. At least when I remake the bed in the morning I know I feel better for it, and meaning is multiplied into dividends. No so with a three day drunk where nothing is everything and reality quotients are deemed counterfeit in a fuzzy display of carelessness and forgot me knots...

spam
Human Spam, All Too Human
Bitter blizzard of sins my own carelessness purchased on credit and oops, a ditch. The barge of Bob's party proved that friendship resolutions are best kept at room temperature. Tilting ambition quotas task me as I crumple, long too busy with luck sucking. Periphery bucks buckling. File jitters fluttering. Poor judgement furniture. Pass or fail remarks. D-house or bust. Ain't got the holy chimes to tell everybody everything I know about them, and ain't got the battle bones to listen to all their own rants and riddles about it. Too tight. Too loose. That’s the way it is among all of us, bound by handshake uselessness & special moting, too offcentered to get much more done than self obliteration one adult beverage after another, word gaming for prizes void in several states, and ogling sessions that defy a national screening; we, the slurfish leisurely class, spamming the spectacle dot dot dot.

Sick and tired of the never-yielding pap. Oh I love my spanking fresh weekdays. Short? You betcha, but my sanctuary for creative work that makes sense to me as I lay in store against the coming weekend of friendship madness.

Bracken just spilled outa here. Using MacLink Plus to convert his DOS MS Works pages into Mac MS Word docs. We added an extra step taking his Works to Word 2.0 DOS, but we've been losing quite a bit of formatting, and Len isn't looking forward to handsetting it again. By staying in Works, we are hoping the trip straight to Mac Word 5.0a will take hours off our stress times and put smiles in all the right places.

I'll keep you all jigged on the fleet fool nostril. Which reminds me of then and now. What do you call a fool in the mirror? A loof...

Flawed and flogging it...

GT