inessential by Brent Simmons


Testing the Manila site editing features in Radio UserLand/Mac. Hello, is this thing on?

If you can read this, that's a good sign.

It's Howard Jones Day on Sheila's site. Remember him? Howard says: "Now you can have a page or site and share it with the world. It could revolutionize the media and the music business as we know it and as a matter of fact I hope it does."

Whenever I have the urge to add a drop-shadow or some 3-D effect to a web page I remember that edict from the '50s art world: thou shalt not violate the integrity of the picture plane.

Flat is good.

I've heard that the Soviets used to have fake American towns where they would train agents for deep cover operations in America. You'd live there, think American, speak English, eat hot dogs, watch television, until you're indistinguishable from someone born and raised in the States.

Then you'd be placed in America. At some point in the future, you'd receive an activation signal.

I sometimes wonder if my life would be any different had I been raised in such a town rather than being an American, Chicago-born.

No, I don't think it would be any different. Except, in the back of my mind, I'd sometimes think -- my control signal hasn't come. No signal yet.

By the way, in general terms, that's the premise of Kurt Vonnegut's Mother Night: you are what you appear to be. One of my favorite Vonnegut books. (Others being Sirens of Titan, Slaughterhouse Five, and Bluebeard.)