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
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   $2 beer and no atmosphere
Wednesday, April 29 1998

hose of you, by the way, who are interested in telling the C-ville Weekly that the Dave Matthews Band website (which gets something like a million hits each day) is the best website in Charlottesville should send your votes to

I spent much of today creating a cross reference in my website for stories about tussin adventures. I was interrupted in the middle of this harrowing web work by the appearance of Wacky Jen, who was headed to the recycling center and wanted to know if Jessika and I wanted to come along. So, sure, we tagged along.

When we got there, we found nothing of much interest in the give-away sheds. I had to content myself with an old December 1st issue of Time Magazine, the one with the article about the septuplet-bearing McCaughleys, made in Pig's image.


en dropped us off on the east end of the Downtown Mall and, at the post office, I mailed Pizza Bomb Crisis to Lucy Huntzinger for only $8 first class. As we went down the Mall from there, we ran across several people we felt compelled to stop and talk to.

In the Downtown Artspace, David Sickmen was excitedly trying to convince some guy to buy his old house in Belmont. He called the house's owner to inquire and then rambled on and on about how easy it is for a potential homeowner to obtain necessary loans and government assistance. I don't know why David was so interested, he had no personal stake in the matter.

It was all very boring to me, so I went down to the Mudhouse for coffee and computing. But Patrick Reed, as he is wont to do, snagged the internet-equipped computer just before I had a chance, and monopolized it for what seemed an endless time. Meanwhile, a girl with reddish hair, sunglasses and a long black dress sat some two dozen feet away, sipping her coffee and writing in a little book. A middle-aged black man wearing a purple "Proud to be a Pop" teeshirt spied her and stopped to tell her how beautiful she was and advise, "don't hurt anyone."

When I was done with my coffee and had had a brief moment on the computer, I headed back towards the middle of the Mall, where I found Nemo, Raphæl and Raphæl's new girlfriend. Soon we were joined by David Sickmen, Jessika, and others in one of those little social knots that is forever forming on the Mall. These knots are nearly impossible to unravel; no one seems to know when it's appropriate to break out and do something more productive. David and Jessika finally headed to the Mudhouse, and I took the opportunity to break away and go solo, the only effective way I've ever found to achieve anything.


n the evening, Amy from Memphis came over and Jessika and her went to dinner at a UVA dining hall. Evidently Amy has extra meals to her credit and she must use them or else lose them. Anyone can help her use them. UVA dining halls are all-you-can-eat places, and smuggling out as much food as possible is part of the fun. When she returned, Jessika brought me back some sort of large salad wrap-type-thing, an unexpected surprise. It disintegrated all over my lap, but I ate it all anyway.


he Jewish Mother, the new bar/restaurant franchise on the Downtown Mall, sells pitchers of cheap beer for $2 each every Wednesday, and all week Deya, Jessika and I had been planning on taking advantage of this deal. Deya drove us down there and we went in. We saw right away that there was a $3 cover charge upstairs, so we knew we'd be drinking our beer downstairs. That was unfortunate, since the downstairs atmosphere doesn't compare to that in the upstairs. The downstairs is an overlit, underpopulated lifeless place, but we had two pitchers anyway. The only other customers in sight were eight middle-aged co-workers who were so strung out on cappucino that they burst into uproarious laughter with irritating regularity. Meanwhile, horrible pop music (the kind you only hear on the stations we never listen to) played softly from the stereo. To make matters worse, Jessika and I kept getting into little fights. It seems like we just can't figure out a way to get along with each other. It's so stressful trying to socialize with her that I occasionally find myself doing unusual things to avoid it.


hen we were done, we decided to go track down Kirstin the Eco-radical at Abundance House. I guess we needed a fix of her unusual vocal style. As we approached her house, Jessika could be heard saying, "Oh no! Not the center of the Earth!" with a mock-Kirstin voice. (The "center of the Earth" reference related to our day spent with the New Agers in Churchville.) But at Abundance House, we were greeted by a guy wrapped in a towell on his way to the shower. He told us that Kirstin was out camping somewhere. Disappointed, we headed on foot to Wacky Jen's place, which is not far away, saying "Oh no! Not the shower!" as we went.

The house was silent and dark, so we started walking away, but as we did so, Wacky Jen miraculously arrived. We ended up sitting around her living room drinking saki and trying to perfect out Kirstin the Eco-radical voices. Jessika and Deya insisted that I have no aptitude for it. Deya, on the other hand, seemed more able to imitate Kirstin with every sip of Saki.

Wacky Jen brought up the subject of the road trip, the one I'm supposed to be taking. Originally Sara Porion and Jessika were going to come with me, but Sara squandered all her money earned as a dominatrix (along with a host of other unfortunate things) and I've decided I can't really do anything with Jessika, so I guess I'll be going all by myself when the lease runs out on Kappa Mutha Fucka. I explained this to Jen quite candidly in front of Jessika, and Jessika retorted that I never wanted to address any issues of contention with her and that's why I feel I can't really do anything with her.

The night wore on, I lay down and tried to fall asleep. Eventually Deya wanted to go, but before she did, Wacky Jen wanted to light off some sparklers in the front yard. The subject of sparklers had come up as a consequence of a discussion of Jen and Deya's weeding job at a local nursery. The main weed they find themselves attacking is chickweed, and, with its runners and little white flowers, it reminds Jen of fireworks. Deya and Jen weed so much that they can see chickweed whenever they close their eyes.

one year ago

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