Subject: Re: The SubGenius "Obstinance" Gene
Date: Wed, 23 Oct 1996 18:15:42 -0400
From: Rev. Random the Other <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Organization: Toxic Cow
References: 1 , 2 , 3 , 4 , 5
> I don't know where it went, Dad. I've been looking everywhere, but
> every time I try to get into the old "Bob" routine, it just reminds me
> that there are people out there who try to find MEANING in this shit.
> I haven't had the urge to write one of "Connie's" journals in so long,
> I think she's abandoned me. I told lurch in e-mail that I feel like
> it's all my fault that alt.slack isn't as much fun anymore. I've
> brought everyone down and I don't know how to bring them back up
> again. I try, but thank God, for Andy Testa's monkey posts or
> Armadillo Fucknuts or ...or I dunno. I miss the interplay we had when
> there were people who knew and liked each other writing here on a
> daily basis. I miss Stang and Sterno and Newman and GGG...because they
> were funny and when they got worked up, it would inspire me. I can't
> do this all alone especially when a couple of regular posters piss me
> off so much that I'm spitting rather than laughing.
> Yes, I was disappointed. I thought that I'd found my people and in
> truth only about half of dozen of them were there. Lil tells me I
> should feel lucky to have found that many. I suppose I should, but I
> was HOPING that I'd stumbled into Mecca, and I found I'd only lurched
> into Dullsville.
> I'm trying...honest to Dobbs, I'm trying.
> desperately seeking
Sparky the Synchronistic Fish
(guitar intro softly in the background)
Little Timmy had a goldfish named Sparky. Timmy himself had selected
Sparky from the tank at Mr. Avid's Fish Emporium. Sparky was the BEST
goldfish in the whole store. Sparkey had long, long fins and tail;
iridescent reds, blues, greens, purples and yellows graced these fragile
cascades and contrasted with the brilliant solid gold of the body. His
eyes were filled with compassion, humor, and understanding.
(It's getting to the point, where I'm no fun anymore. I am sorry. Some
times it hurts so bad I mustn't cry out loud. I am lonely. I am yours,
you are mine, you are what you are. And you make it hard...)
Timmy would spend long hours everyday, staring past the glass surface that
separated him from his friend, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming.
Dreaming Dreams no one EVER dared to dream before. Timmy was aware that
the greatest gift of his whole life was simply that he was able to spend
time with Sparky. Sparky was the best goldfish in the world.
(Remember what we've said, and done, and felt about each other? Oh babe
have mercy. Don't let the past remind us of what we are not now. I am
One day Timmy went to look in on Sparky, and something was wrong!
Sparky's colors looked a little faded; his eyes seemed dull. Timmy
quickly brought Mom and Dad to Sparky's side, and they agreed that the
colors had faded. Little white spots could be seen on the tips of the
fins and on some of the scales. The three of them drove Sparky to Mr
Avid's. It was the worst day of Timmy's life. Timmy just couldn't
believe that Sparky could get Ickky, but thats just what Mr. Avid said.
Mr Avid also took Timmy aside, and told him as kindly as he could that
there wasn't much hope...
(Tearing yourself away from me now - you are free. And I am crying. This
does not mean I don't love you - I do. That's forever...)
Shortly after, right before Timmy's eyes, Sparky went belly up. Mom and
Dad tried to be consoling. They told Timmy that Sparky was in a better
place. They told Timmy that Sparky was in Fishy Heaven. Timmy ran from
the room. Poor Timmy, his face in the pillow, found himself alone,
abandoned, and afraid. Suddenly the thought of spending this time alone
was too much for him, and Timmy went to seek what little comfort there was
in the company of Mom and Dad. He followed the soothing sounds of their
voices, finding them in the bathroom. He looked in just as, to his utter
horror, Sparky was being sent forth to Fishy Heaven.
(Something inside is telling me that I've got your secret. Are you still
listening? Fear is the lock, and laughter the key...)
After several weeks, Mom and Dad took Timmy to Mr. Avid's Fish Emporium.
They wanted Timmy to pick out a new fish, but none of the new ones were
ANYTHING like Sparky. The colors were all wrong, and none of the fish had
nearly the size fins or tail as Sparky. Half of them had those really
bulgy eyes... After a time, Mr. Avid, who had been talking quietly with
Timmy's folks, took Timmy aside and said, "Timmy, I know how much you love
goldfish. Let me show you the ones that I've been breeding. I've given
my life, since even before I retired to run this shop, to the joy and
passion of Improving Fish, selecting only the ones that show those traits
that I wish to see propagated. I have crossed and re-crossed, and I am
finally satisfied with the new strain. I intend to unveil them at this
years meeting of the Goldfish Society, where I am sure that they will be
loved and accepted. I intent to win Best New Breed with these beauties!"
(...you are what you are. And you make it hard.)
A sparkle of interest filled Timmy's eyes for the first time since...
since... Mr. Avid brought from the back room a tank, and set it before
Timmy. With the pride that comes from the anticipated recognition of the
value of a great personal achievement, Mr. Avid unveiled his beloved new
breed. "Note how the fins are held out from the body, so that the lovely
curtains of color drape more freely. And see the tails? See how they
bend upward before flowing off? It was that fountain shape that motivated
all my years of work; a meager contribution, to some, but to me it is pure
Glory. I look to the day when all pet shops will sell fish this
beautiful," said Mr. Avid, with a twinkle in his eye.
Timmy was appalled. The new fish that were supposed to be the best were
not like Sparky AT ALL! The bodies were ALL WRONG! The fins were wrong
and the tails were wrong, and it was just awful! "This is HORRIBLE!
These fish are WRONG," cried Timmy, as he bolted from Mr. Avid's shop.
(Friday evening. Sunday in the afternoon. What have I got to lose?
Tuesday morning - please be gone I'm tired of you. What have you got to
After the Taggart Bridge collapsed, Timmy's family moved to Oklahoma to
raise "zucchni". Timmy grew up to be a very unhappy man. All the people
around him seemed so...so..out of touch or something. His friends only
dropped by once or twice a week; everyone was so busy. Nothing was the
way it should have been. One day, as Timmy was delivering zucchni to the
market, Timmy was startled to see an fish tank on display in the window of
the local pet shop. The tank was filled with Avid Goldfish. He ran into
the store, and questioned the owner. "Oh, yes," said the owner, "everyone
is selling Avid Goldfish these days. Best thing to hit the market."
(Can I tell it like it is?)
Timmy never forgot Sparky. He thought and thought, and decided that
people were just too stupid to own fish. They had already defiled
Sparky's Memory by owning all these NEW goldfish. None of it was as good
as it used to be. People GAVE UP the right to keep fish when they lost
the ability to understand and appreciate how Good It Could Be, or so it
seemed to Timmy.
Timmy joined PETA, and worked with the Aquarium Rescue Unit. As the years
went by, his passions grew stronger, his convictions more rigorous. He
won recognition for his innovations in tactical disruption. Soon he
realized that unless EVERYONE woke up, things would just get worse and
worse. Desparate times required Strong Measures. Leadership was required
to drive these Defilers OUT! Some fish must be sacrificed, to save the
pool so that, so that ALL fish could be free.
Years went by. Timmy just got more and more bitter. People just seemed
to keep buying Avid Goldfish, new people, more and more of them. He could
not understand them at all. They refused to listen to him when he talked
of How It Could Be, of How It Used To Be. They said that they were doing
just what they wanted, and that things were Great just the way they were.
They didn't even visit their fish that often, but insisted that they
indeed Loved them. And then, one day...
(Will you come see me? Thursdays and Saturdays. What have you got to
Something caught Timmy's eye in the tank where he had just poured the
bleach. One of the fish had a streak of iridescent red precisely the same
color in the same pattern on the tail Sparky had had, long ago. Timmy
peered in, and saw that another one had the same blue markings on the
fins. Yet another had the eyes. The EYES! They were Beautiful! Timmy
fell deeply into a trace while contemplating these fish, and he was aware
for the first time ever of their beauty, even as they began to convulse.
It was as if some magical Door into his very soul had been flung open, and
he peered directly into the Heart of All That Matters.
He Understood, for the first time, that Sparky LIVED ON!
And Timmy renounced his ways, saying "All this time I was surrounded by
the greatest Miracle in the Universe, and I refused to see it, or touch it
or feel it or believe in it. Praise Mr. Avid! Praise the New Goldfish!"
And looking at the calender on his watch, he realized that it was
Independence day. The thought struck him with a fullness that he could
never explain. Free at last to enjoy life, to buy an aquarium, to stock
it. Free even from what he once thought freedom WOULD have meant, for he
realized how destructive his cunning and intelligence could have been if
directed AGAINST his friends at PETA. No, Timmy thought, people have to
fumble with Error in order to separate it out from the Truth. I do not
want to spend the rest of my life fighting. Independence Day. I am free
to enjoy all the goldfish that life has to offer. And I swear to remember
this day as "Sparky's Day" and celebrate the memory of my new freedom
every year on this day. And Timmy wrote in his journal:
July 4, 1998 - Sparky's Day.
And then he turned that goddam radio off.
And I won't apologize to ANYONE, not even STANG,
for fouling the nest.
Rev. Random the Other
One of the clueless newbie hordes
"you need to wash your eyes out - with soap!"