And a one and a two and a here we go, off into the wild blue yonder of the Malibu coastline, with wine, exes, freeway traffic, sophistication, $10 couches, real money, dog catchers, Thomas Brothers maps, helicopters, Elizabeth Shue in a leather skirt, bacterial infections, hard boiled eggs, sweat, darkness, garbage, shrubbery, pregnancy, hospitality, Cheech and Chong, George Carlin, Bill Cosby, pop life, and a friendly admonition to keep on truckin'.
Join me, won't you, on an action-packed cross country bicycle trip that I undertook a few short decades ago, in the America of the late 1980s. Weren't those glorious times? What with the Cold War, the Reagan presidency gracefully pirouetting into the Bush presidency, Iran-Contra, Oliver North, revered statesman Dan Quayle, precious baby Jessica falling into that darn well, the "War on Drugs," Exxon Valdez, Lyle and Erik Menendez, that kooky Berlin Wall. We'll talk about none of that, but perhaps we'll see what we're made of, all of us. Or, you know, not. Anything can happen.
What is it about beer, or any alcohol, really, that makes us so...I don't know, wonderful? Okay, it doesn't make all of us wonderful, I'll give you that. Some people shouldn't be allowed to drink. I certainly shouldn't have been allowed to drink when I was a young man, but no one stopped me, so some things happened, as they will. Here is the story of one (or two) of those things. Also, don't forget to vote! I'm supposed to say that, right?
For a while you sounded like a famous judge, describing your love for beer. Then, I followed you to the top of the bridge and fell into Orpheus’arms. Woke up 10 minutes later to go back to ‘this is not a test’ when you meet the gear master. Unlike the beer loving judge, heard your added confession . That was fun!
It's raining in Los Angeles, so we may as well talk about formative years, Bangladesh, mittens, waterlogged La-Z-Boys, Blue Mountain coffee, English muffins, Bordeaux, procrastination, what it means to be human, Facebook and other modern afflictions, Alex Jones, conspiracy, shirtless weeping, the Roman Empire, truth and science, Jesus himself, Nixon himself, Woodrow Wilson, selling candles door to door, and pear trees.
Pretty much everything about the early days of the web.
Things came and went and no one kept track of it, probably because it wasn't possible to keep track of it. There's no trace of the company that I first rented web server space from back in 1995, no mention of them anywhere, no mention of the provider that I used to get on the Internet, things like that. Just about every time I've tried to find information about anything related to the mid-90s web, I've hit a brick wall.
The "Way Back Machine" at archive.org is supposed to be the history of the web, but it doesn't go all the way back, and most of the older stuff they have is so broken it's pretty much worthless. Their copies don't support technologies that were commonly used back in the day, like image maps, and many kinds of "active" pages. Consequently it's just weird little fragments.
This guy is the only one to come close to producing a history of the early web (ostensibly he starts that history with Netscape, but in the course of the interviews they often go back further). He's doing a good, thorough job, but he only started his podcast a few years ago. Before that, the things he's talking about - you couldn't find anything about them.
I am one of the lucky you refer to in re rain. And your coffee ramblings had me lol-ing on the train to work. Sanka, even the mere mention of the product, makes me immediately think of my grandparents. Great episode again.
Ah ok, I see. Interesting that there is a "dark history" of the early web. I assumed, obviously naively, that everything that came before the late 90's is well documented with pictures and screenshots and everything.
edit: apropos Wayback Machine, who here remembers these humble beginnings? 2006, baby!
Well, this is how archive.org has immortalized the original home of the Bukowski database on smog.net eight years earlier:
It's not their fault it's broken. Using imagemaps as navigation was stupid (they require another server-side file to work properly, the 'map' part of the image map). But everyone did it because it was the latest thing.
And while that's the first grab archive.org has of smog, the Bukowski section/database was up for a few years before that.
It would have been 1995, but it was probably just a few poems and a short story.
The database started in 1999, when Krumhansl was published. I scanned the entire book and shoehorned the data into a primitive single table database. It stayed primitive until early 2006, and it's been steadily becoming slightly less primitive ever since.
Must have been one of the first places on the net ever where you could find Bukowskis work, no?
I think I wrote this before but when I was searching the web in the early 2000s looking for information on this genius author I had recently discovered, smog.net was exciting ... I drank it all in, the article by Linda King, the photos, the interviews, the rare stuff. The FBI Files blew my mind. I was in awe what a rich resource this was for any Bukowski fan.
Much like I'd feel today if I found this place. Only now the resource and well of information has grown 100x since then. It's still the ultimative place for any Bukowski fan online.