October 21st, 2004


Does this man sound familiar to you?

I think it's fair to say that all of us have missed opportunities that we're still sort of curious about.

Back in 1991 or so, I placed a personal ad in the East Bay Express. I was a junior at Cal, and I was getting absolutely nowhere trying to find a boyfriend through the university's gay social networks [long story short, they were a bunch of annoying, whiny, skinny, depilated ACT UP/Queer Nation types who thought I was disgusting, and who were horrified that I wanted to have sex with big furry Bears.] So, for the first and last time in my life, I placed a personal ad. It probably said something like... oh, hell, I can't remember. God help me if I used the word "cub", but anything's possible; at any rate, it was clear that I was a Bear and was looking for a fellow bruin.

Three people responded.

The first was none other than Lewis Day, a very handsome librarian who worked up the street from my apartment at the time. He's since moved to Boston, I think, and has settled down with Sherman Hankey, whose name was funny up until that South Park episode. Now, it's downright hilarious. Lewis and I had one date, followed by good but awkward sex. [Hey, I was young and still not even remotely at ease with casual sex.] I was kind of flustered by the whole thing, and avoided talking to Lewis again because I was embarassed that I liked him so much. So, that was that... until we ran into each other at a Bear Pride in Chicago in the late 1990s, at which point I apologized and we made out. Score!

The second was Mark Bingham, otherwise known as Our Dead Gay Hero. We wound up dating for a couple years... you know the story. I've told it to death.

The third was a man by the name of Mark, who apparently did his undergraduate work at Lewis and Clark College; I think he got his degree in German. If I remember correctly, he'd started working on his masters degree in public health at Berkeley.

I never did call that Mark - he'd left a message a few days after I'd met Mark B... Mark B. and I seemed to hit it off really well, so I just stuck with that Mark.

So... my question for you, dear reader, is this: Any idea who that other Mark might have been?

Dear American Airlines

[or, rather: Dear AA.com Webmaster...]

See this URL?


ViewPromotionsDetail, huh? Sure makes it sound like something fun! Maybe... double miles to Caracas? Bonus 500 miles for buying your ticket online?

Oh, wait, this URL is for a press release about a flight that crashed killing 13 people?

You really should rethink that URL.

Because it's my blog #7

This is the last picture I know of where I'm clean shaven. Spring 1985.

I apologize in advance for the tie. At least it's my clan tartan.

To my right is Robert Curlee, whom I have to thank for first introducing me to UNIX. Rob was a Christian Scientist stoner. It used to really annoy me that he wouldn't take aspirin when he was sick... but he'd come back to the dorm room reeking of pot. I mean, honestly. Shouldn't he just be able to pray himself high?

Because it's my blog #8

That's right, it's my high school yearbook page. Spring 1987.

Some things to note:

It's not just a bad scan - it's an intentionally damaged photocopy of a bad picture that's been reduced/enlarged a few times on a photocopier to get it to be really grainy. This was long before Photoshop, you know.

Yes, my nickname was Bear, and tpratt did occasionally call me Kris Kringle. Some kids also called me Lumber.

It wasn't GBG, but I did joke with my friend Bret that I was obviously "going [to] be gay," hence the inclusion of those three letters.

Quotes are stolen from: Foetus, Samuel Beckett, Wendy's, XTC, Nietzsche [this is the only really embarassing one cuz it's so predictably high school], Throbbing Gristle, a Native American quote from the Oakland Museum, Bret Thurwalker, John Lydon, and Kafka at least twice.

Chris Anderson was last seen attending grad school at UCLA. He's a composer.