Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
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Irving housing

got that wrong

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Like my brownhouse:
   helicopters, guns and pasta
Monday, April 9 2001 9:30am:
When I'd left work on Friday evening with Julian, I'd left my bicycle at my workplace, so this morning I had to walk in. I first went up to Wilshire to get a bagel and some coffee. As I walked back south, I saw helicopters accumulating in the sky down near my workplace. There were at least four, and I guess they were mostly news choppers. They hovered almost perfectly still in the air. There were three or four cop cars expediently parked near the corner of Wellesley and Rochester, and I thought maybe they were responding to the same crisis, but now I don't think so.
The center of the crisis, as it turned out, was a half mile or so away, down on Nebraska Avenue. I saw little three wheeled parking enforcement vehicles prowling about, setting up roadblocks. I continued southward and westward, eventually getting down to Nebraska at the corner with Berkeley. That's where I saw cops unfurling rolls of police tape. I absent-mindedly ducked beneath some yellow tape as I continued westward, and one of the cops hollered at me, "What do you think that tape means?" Right next to him was a police guy with a flack jacket and a menacing-looking assault rifle pointing into the sky. "I'm just trying to get to work in that building over there," I explained. So the guy without the assault rifle led me across Nebraska to the other sidewalk and told me I could go that way. I'm trying to find out what the hell is going on but nothing is on the news as of yet.

It turns out that an employee at Airborn Express in Santa Monica (a couple blocks from where I work) had brought a handgun to work, fired it in the air a few times, and generally gone postal. The SWAT team shot him in the leg before subduing him and there were no other injuries. It wasn't nearly as major of a story as it looked at the time.
In retrospect, I'm not surprised that someone at Airborn Express would be so stressed-out on the job. Those guys have a job to do and packages that should have been delivered yesterday. They're like the US Post Office, only twice as frenetic. Passing by that place as often as I do on my way to and from work, I've nearly been clipped by the guys driving those Airborn Express vans on several occasions. They're madmen and they certainly don't give two shits about the long term utility of the vehicles they drive. Don't ever buy a used Airborn Express van, folks. I can't imagine any of them have viable suspensions or, for that matter, straight axles.

In the evening, after another hectic day of endless shit storm, I went out with the UK CTO as well as a writer guy named John from the UK office (and also John's local LA-based friend). While in Santa Monica today, Writer John had interviewed Ozzy Osborne and the drummer for the reunion Black Sabbath. It turns out that Ozzy's mother has just died and Ozzy hasn't even bothered to tell his bandmates; Writer John found himself having to break the news. "So that's what it was!" exclaimed the drummer. "Ozzy's like a little kid who has to go to the loo. He can't sit still. He's always getting up and shifting about," Writer John observed.
On the way to dinner, the CTO and I followed Writer John's friend's car up the Pacific Coast Highway to Pacific Palisades. Writer John's friend's car is a black Camaro, and though I know it's difficult to comprehend, somehow Writer John's friend managed to operate the thing without the assistance of a mullet. The sunset on the cold Pacific was spectacular, but the Italian restaurant in Pacific Palisades was closed. So instead we dined at a crowded Italian restaurant on the corner of Colorado and 6th in Santa Monica, a place called Fritto Misto. The food was excellent, but the bad acoustics and sheer density of diners in its tiny bleak-walled rooms made it difficult for us to hear one another talk. In conversation it turned out that Writer John's friend is something of a tequila snob, which didn't endear him much to the CTO. But his choice of wine for the table was good.

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