Something for the Computer Geeks

I’m looking at some of my usage stats, to see what browsers people are using (Mozilla: 39%; IE: 33%; Opera, Netscape, Safari: <4% each) and OS’s (Windows: 85%, Mac OS: 9.5%, Linux: 5%), and in the latter category I discover that here in 2007, there has been a single visit from someone running OS/2. OS/2! Man, it’s like getting a phone call from 1992 and listening to the guy on the other end of the line talk you about that awesome new grunge music scene. There were also about 100 visits from people using Lynx, which I think is actually kind of cool. Possibly one of those was from the guy running OS/2.

And, hey, if you’re the OS/2 guy: Qua, dude, qua. I think you owe us all an explanation.

Small Town Life: One in a Series

So, Athena’s school has been canceled every day this week, twice because of cold and once (today) because of snow, and tomorrow and Friday the school day is going to be cut short at one o’clock because staff member at the school passed away and the family asked to have the viewing of the body at the school (which will happen on Thursday) and also the memorial service (which will happen on Friday). I really have no objection regarding either — I think it’s kind of poignant, actually — but it’s interesting that Athena won’t have a full day of school in an entire week. Life in a little town in the dead of winter.

Move Under Ground: Now in Convenient Creative Commons Form


Nick Mamatas, who co-wrote the short story “Who Put The Bomp?” which I published here (and which I keep flogging for your Hugo nomination consideration), has decided to take his debut novel, Move Under Ground, and make it available for free under a Creative Commons license. He has his reasons:

The first is simply that I wish my novel to be more widely read. The second is that I am currently a student at Western Connecticut University’s MFA program in Professional Writing, and this
site is a project for its class on publishing technologies. The third is a bit more mercenary: if you like this book, perhaps you’d like to buy either the hardcover or the trade paperback.

As it happens, I own the hardcover; I think the novel — which has Jack Kerouac facing off against Cthulhu, you know, like you do — is pretty damn good, and I’m not the only one, since Booklist called it a “tour de force” and Publishers Weekly said “Though Lovecraft reduxes are common in horror, few show the wit and energy of this original effort.” Which is nice praise if you can get it.

In any event, check it out in electronic form; if you like it, buy the physical copy. Simple.

Curing Teh Gayz — In Just Three Weeks!

There are going to be enough people out there who will point out the fundamental (heh) absurdity of declaring Ted Haggard cured of his taste for jock-seasoned meats that I’m not even going to bother with that. What I will say is that I found the following tidbit from Haggard’s recent e-mail to his former flock interesting:

As part of New Life’s efforts to help me, they sent Gayle and me to Phoenix for a three-week psychological intensive that gave us three years worth of analysis and treatment. We all wanted to know why I developed such incongruity in my life.

Really? Three years of therapy in three weeks? This was the Reader’s Digest Condensed Gay Cure package, then? How can that work? I mean, come on. That part where you taser a gay man’s junk while he watches the films of Cher? That takes up a whole day in itself. You can’t just scamper through Mermaids if you want those 50,000 volts of pure haploid-frying Christly love to have their maximum effect. Remember: They must savor ‘ere you taser. And then you only have 20 days left for everything else! It’s madness, I tell you! Madness.

Those of you who persist in dealing with reality may quite rightly note that inasmuch as curing people of their hunger for smoked pole doesn’t work anyway, you might as well take the three-week course, the better to get out in time for prime cruise season. But, see. That’s exactly the problem, isn’t it? You can’t cure people of the same sex slippery, so the only real value of one of these programs is to reassure people who simply don’t want to know any better that you’ve done your time and have had the longing for the huevos con chorizo grande platter well and truly shaken out of you. And, well. Three weeks just isn’t enough time for that.

You what a three-week gay cure is like? It’s like Rock & Roll Fantasy Camp. You go, you play around with people who are what you kind of fantasize about being, and you have a fine ol’ time jumping up and down on stage with your new pals. But when you come home, your friends don’t suddenly confuse you with David Bowie. And if you tell them you’re going to chuck your job and go on the road, they’ll look at you like you’re high. That’s because the relevant word in the phrase “Rock & Roll Fantasy Camp” is “fantasy”.

Now, unlike the rock & roll fantasy camp, the three-week gay cure probably isn’t up front about the whole “fantasy” aspect of its product. But, friend. Everybody knows. Which is why, I suspect, when members of Haggard’s former flock read about it, at least some of them are going to go “three weeks, eh?” and then start counting the days until the man gets caught once again sampling from the sausage tray. These folks may be misguided in their thoughts on making people “ex-gay,” but that doesn’t mean they’re stupid.

Bottom line: If you want people to buy the lie that you’ve been de-homofied, you need to put in the tick-tock. Three months, at least. That’s like a semester at Julliard, if you know what I mean. At least you’ve then given the appearance of making an effort. Three weeks? Not even close.