|Whew! This has been a few weeks of very wild stuff. Before 9/11 I was hanging out at Jacques' house — hmmmm, house …that’s not exactly the word I would use. His encampment. He had a great party that Drew Youngs had invited the Wild Women of Wonder (WiWoWo) to attend. Jacques is a great guy who appeared more recently in Tycoon Magazine for his collection of tanks. He has these huge hangers where his tanks are stored and one was emptied out for the party — the Pete Escavito (sp?) band played the event with Drew doing some great Sting and Santana covers, man that guy has a voice like buttah.
We were having a great time -- Nicole Kidd and her yummy boy Joey, Lara Abrams, Meihong Xu, Mai Dembowski, Carol Sands, Jamis MacNiven and his wonderful wife Margaret, Jane Mermalstein, Sylvia Paull and Carla Rayacich and her wonderful physicist Wes — it was Carla’s last hurrah in her gold-lame Oscar-like dress — Michael Land said it all when he said she looked like an award. She was fabulous that night, she is even more beautiful now; pregnant with twins — wonderful babies for the WiWoWo group to play with.
That was a really great warm summer night up in the mountains with 40 or so military tanks that we were crawling in and out of and having a great time. Folks were partying like there were no worries, innocent of the tragedy to come, dancing and eating the finest foods and wine — with the backdrop of a few rare WWII tanks in the background of the buffet. I think I actually can say I live a pretty surrealistic life from time to time.
Michael, a very accomplished musician (as well as entrepreneur), and I followed Freddie Clarke (Clarkebaby@aol.com if you want his pretty insightful newsletter with the dates of gigs he’s playing where the royalty of San Francisco meet and greet around his music — Freddie is also a very accomplished musician) up to the main house where to our great pleasure we found a room very much like a church, beautiful wooden room, three-story room with very clean, earthy acoustics and an organ on the second floor with two stories of pipes attached to it. Fortunately, Michael knows how to play one of these monster musical instruments. I had too much to drink, so I stretched out on the floor on my back and digividtaped him upside down while he played that huge magnificent instrument with all the pedals and pulls. It was a blast; he looked like a mad scientist who’d just found how to play a quantum mechanics theory in musical notes. Then a few more people found us and joined in on the percussion instruments on the ground floor; it was a great time. We closed down the place and winded our way down the hills and back into the Valley.
It was a party to remember. Before I had a chance to write about it, 9/11 happened and it kind of left my thoughts until a Cyber Arts party a few weeks back that I wrote about a few weeks ago www.cyberarts.org) when there was such a great group of people that showed up to hang with each other. Kitty and Frank Wells had a great, huge New York alter that was fabulous. It was amazing to see people pull together not even a week after 9/11. The important thing is that it was one of the few conferences not cancelled. The ironic thing? Adobe, the company that brought charges against Dmitry and ElcomSoft, was one of the sponsors. Such a strange, ironic world we live in.
Getting back to the subject at hand, I received an email today that reminded me that we have to celebrate even when times are bad and war has sent our soldiers into dangerous territory; if we don’t we shall all go mad. It was an email blast from John Perry Barlow < www.EFF.org > about a party on Friday he held a few blocks away from Ground Zero. It was an amazing account of 200 people coming together, many strangers finding their way past the police lines to Duane Street and finally the Granite Room to celebrate just being together; being alive in amazing times in difficult times. There was a great account of a group of people (they’re not rescue people anymore, because they’re not rescuing anyone anymore —they are now working the rubble for decomposed flesh; nothing anyone would recognize anymore as their loved one or co-worker. They are DNA retrievers who are still trying to make sense of what’s left in the aftermath) who had wandered over from the Ground Zero’s late night shift and joined the party.
JPB also conveyed what the news media hasn’t been able to about the stench that permeates Ground Zero: “…aside from the mourning in New York, the hysteria everywhere else, and a local landscape alteration that feels in Manhattan like the sudden disappearance of the Tetons would in Jackson Hole - the smell is the most pervasive and emotionally penetrating reminder of the massacre. I won't be able to convey it either. It is an even combination of the worst the chemical and the biological can punch your nose with. On the chemical side, one can detect formaldehyde gas that most plastics emit when burned, mercury vapor, asbestos dust, and probably a number of other inorganic molecules never before assembled. And the biological component is, well... the heated, twenty days-dead bio-mass of 6000 - give or take a thousand - of our fellow human beings.”
And this has been the most profound reporting I’ve yet seen of the aftermath. One of the things I’ve really noticed is that there are a plethora of parties to attend. Kitty and Frank Wells of Burning Man fame had a post-Burning Man party yesterday…lots of people from the Cyber Arts party up in the City and the Burning Man crowd. Great Mark McGothigan videos of Emerald City, the Mausoleum and all the rest of the imagery that BM holds. I can hardly wait for the Burning Bride installation, WiWoWo is going to have such a great camp next year.
There’s Bob Ayer’s party this weekend up in the hills of Berkeley … and Dane Andrew’s 37th Bday three-day party of debauchery out in his cliff house in Montera overlooking the Pacific Ocean, the Burning Man Decompression Party. The Wired RAVE Awards are just around the corner, the Iconocast party is coming up — and on and on, my Palm Pilot has been wired invitations well into the spring.
And as we drink enough and laugh enough to forget momentarily, alas, there’s lots of stuff still on our minds. Primarily this war at hand — did you see Ben Lowden’s (I figure if all the media starts misspelling and mispronouncing his name it’ll get him pissed off enough to make a mistake so we can fall on him and feed; he is a man whose ego is being satisfied by the media putting him on the fucking cover of Newsweek and every other pub except the glam rags -- although it really might offend him to be on the cover of Cosmo with a bright shade of lipstick and perky airbrushed breasts highlighted in some fabulous, tight designer rags) interview — how surrealistic was that.
But still I collect more interviews for the FutureNet book because the whole encryption issue heats up and Dmitry is going in November to fight his battle that I’ll be covering for some pub or another. My whole book due weeks ago changed; it changed because the world changed; because the Internet means something different now. I could have left it the way it was, but everything has changed.
So, we wait, I write, and we still party like it’s 1999 (those sure were the good ’ol days, huh?). Who would have thought Prince would have had such wisdom in the ’80s? Could it have been that he foresaw dot-com crash and the fucked-up 2000s. Could the man formally known as Prince (you fill in the blank, my keyboard can't make that symbol, perhaps it was encrypted) be the new Messiah arisen from an era of bad music? So, as we wait, and gather and watch the bio-terrorism stories from the TV screens at the British Banker’s Club pub; we know the other shoe is about to drop; we’re just trying to avoid being underneath it.