People and their memes

Sat, 23 Apr 1994 06:15:04 -0400

>Having read the comments by Eve Pinsker and others on aggression in
>professional relationships, I'd like to make a suggestion as to how we
>could avoid flame wars on anthro-l. I feel that one of the reasons
>discussions sometimes get so nasty is because we know so little about
>one another *as people* that we often forget that there *are* people
>behind the messages.

This may be true for ANTHRO-L, but my experience on other mailing lists is
that familiarity still continues to breed discontent. In fact, the people
who know each other offline often flame each other the worst...

>For example I only just discovered that
>Christopher Pound is also a 'computer person', and Stephanie Nelson
>mistook me for a tenured academic.

Amazing, that. I can only imagine what I have been mistaken for,
considering that I deliberately employ a .sig designed to create ambiguity.

>My sugestion is that the 20 or 30 regular contributors to the list
>write a short description (say <100 words) of themselves, and that these
>descriptions be collated and mailed once a month (or however often
>seems appropriate) to the list. I'm happy to compile such a file if
>people want to mail me their life stories (or just post them to the list).

Well, I don't know about bringing these bios to the list once a month; I
will put one online here, Danny, and if you want to compile it into
something, fine... based on changing membership of the list, I suspect this
compilation will also be continually changing.

>I don't mean for people to produce a list of their research interests.
>I was thinking of a more personal description, perhaps even with a few
>bits of complete trivia - something to help us understand that there is
>a person behind all those words! (I don't know about the rest of you,
>but I would find it hard to say anything personally nasty about someone
>who I knew kept an extensive collection of tropical fish, or who had an
>uncontrollable fondness for chocolate, however poorly I thought of
>their ideas.)

Well, my hobbies are a little more eccentric. I'm very heavy into Shortwave
Radio and Scanner listening, for one thing. I collect catalogs of the
far-out. One of my favorites is Paladin Press, which lists the state of the
art in electronic surveillance and countersurveillance. As far as foods I
can't live without - heaven bless the jalapeno pepper, which makes (almost)
everything taste better.

>Danny Yee.
>Born 1969. Eurasian (father 2nd generation Chinese), but socialised as
>'Australian' (whatever that means) and technically Jewish (mother's
>mother's mother was a practising Jew)!

Mazal Tov, as they say.

> Makes a bare living as a
>part-time computer network administrator;

We will have this (partially) in common; I hope to take over as the anthro
computer lab consultant/troubleshooter here at UF in the fall.

(rest of Danny's bio deleted)

OK, folks, here's the real dish on Steve Mizrach (Danny, stash this in your
compilation file, if you want.)

Yes, he is Jewish. Reform, to be exact, verging on Deconstructionist. Born
in Miami in 1970, he has lived in Florida for most of his life, except for
a brief detour to the DC/Baltimore area for five years (at JHU.) He is
indeed a real-life graduate student at the "goyisha party school," known as
U of F, concentrating on getting his Master's in cultural anthropology.

On the net, he prefers to go by Seeker1, because he can. (And mostly
because this is the custom of most of the cyberhangouts he's visited.) In
general, when it comes to the net, he prefers the fringes (where conspiracy
theorists, UFOlogists, mad scientists, hackers, and other deviants hang
out) to the center.

Favorite music: techno/acid house/rave; also, progressive/alternative/New
Wave (if those things mean anything anymore), punk, ska, World Beat;
favorite author: sci fi writer Philip K. Dick; favorite TV show, The X
Files; favorite BBS: MindVox and the WELL; favorite 'zine: Crash Collusion
and Mondo 2000.

Favorite areas of interest (I couldn't leave this out): cyberculture,
consciousness studies, postmodernity, religious studies, visual
anthropology and (hyper)media studies, sociology of knowledge,
futurism/sci-tech studies, memetics, Haitian Voudoun, Mayan and Hopi
eschatology, "modern primitives."

Cannot resist here making a plug for my favorite cyberpunks, Re:WIRED
(Workshop for the Invention and Research of Electronic Discourse). Re:WIRED
maintains a WorldWideWeb node, the ParaSite, whose URL is I have a
home page there which has lots of neat text files and stuff. This home page
also explains why I use the handle "Seeker1," for those of you who wonder.

Seeker1 [@Nervm.Nerdc.Ufl.Edu] (real info available on request)
CyberAnthropologist, TechnoCulturalist, Guerilla Ontologist, Chaotician
Matrix Master Control Node #3, Gainesville, Fl.
"I slept with Faith & found a corpse in my arms upon awakening/ I drank and
danced all night with Doubt and found her a virgin in the morning." --