Gonzo Marketing:Winning Through Worst Practices The Bombast Transcripts: Rants and Screeds of RageBoy
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Saturday, August 16, 2003
Marek Rings Up...

...from Dallas and plays me MP3s over the phone for about an hour, including selected cuts from the CD above. He has had a little vodka, I can tell. Polish vodka, naturally. He is whooping. A very excitable boy. After I blog this, I click through to the Amazon page and find a review titled Locke lives in the gutter of Shame -- really, go see for yourself. But this is amazing, I'm thinking. How do they all know? This is too weird. It's like the post horns all over again! And I thought I was getting better...

11:13 PM | link |

Death by Success
Eastern U.S. power outage, plus Yahoo Personals progress...
As many of you know, EGR HQ is located deep in the heart of the Yucatan peninsula -- 1000 feet below the as yet undiscovered -- and undiscoverable -- remains of an ancient Mayan pyramid. So don't bother mounting any expeditions.

Most of the time, however, when operations are... ah, let's just say, less sensitive, we work out of Boulder, Colorado. To further insulate ourselves from the not-so-idle curiosity of various world "intelligence" communities, our popserver and web hosting is located in NY City, on Panix. What can we say? We thought the name was congruent with our plans (very much still in effect) for world domination. In the last several days you may have noticed that this blog was unreachable. And, if you sent mail, that it was bouncing.

This temporary outage was the result of a certain experimental alternative power project we had underwritten some months ago in the upstate New York region, involving Very Large Scale Array Tesla coils, plus some offworld tech that looked highly promising from a cursory study of the schematics we managed to recover from Area 51 last year. Bringing the project online Thursday was quite a thrill, as it was a success surpassing everything we'd hoped to accomplish. The champagne and heroin were flowing liberally!

However, it seems that we'd rather underestimated the electromagnetic pulse (EMP) effect, which took out conventional power to some 81 million square miles of the northeastern United States and parts of Canada. Whoops. Actually, RB had warned the field team that this might happen, and as a precautionary measure had therefore shipped one of EGR's interociters to Panix earlier in the week. Using this as an infinitely uninterruptable power supply, they could at least keep the EGR site live even if the rest of the country got blacked out. The device was assembled in record time using nanotech utility fog coordinates transmitted, unbeknownst to Rupert Murdoch's notoriously dim IT staff, via B-Star-B uplink. As later investigation uncovered, however, the terabit decryption key for unlocking the initialization codes necessary to boot the sub-space shunt were still being sent via RB's 56k modem when the Eastern grid went down. As far-famed technology guru and incomparable ex-lover Esther Dyson likes to say: "Always make new mistakes." Well, this sure was a new one for us! Apologies to any of you who may have been inconvenienced.

Meanwhile, RB's first attempt at dating in over 200 years is meeting with mixed results. On the plus side, many women are apparently ecstatic at the prospect of meeting (and whatevering) him. On the minus side, some unethical individual seems to have posted RB's unlisted telephone number on the Internet. As a result, EGR has been forced to retain a sizable cadre of telephone operators to deal with a 19,000% increase in incoming message traffic. This has been necessary, despite the enormous expense, to keep our lines clear for the coordination of international terro... uh, that is, humanitarian aid projects.

Notwithstanding these efforts, some particularly persistent applicants have managed to locate the whereabouts of this new emergency call center in Budapest, and several (as pictured above in a still taken from our video surveillance system) have attempted to bribe these poor women -- who, by the way, speak only Rhaeto-Romance -- to divulge RB's location in the Yucatan, from where, for what we hope will be obvious reasons, we are blogging this tonight.

On a rather more positive note -- at least it seemed so at first -- RB did take a particular shine to one of the Yahoo Personals respondents. To such a degree, in fact, that he ill-advisedly flew her to HQ in the Lear. All, of course, without a by your leave, and without posting a flight plan. How utterly like him. When the swat team we scrambled to find him -- kidnapping was initially suspected -- did in fact find locate him some 72 hours later, he told them not to worry, as he had, and we quote, "a good feeling about this one."

Evidently, however, the young woman in question has had second (not to mention third, fourth and fifth) thoughts about the advantages of becoming RB's exclusive Love Slave, as he insists upon calling her. Now it appears her memory will have to be erased -- he didn't even bother to blindfold her on the inbound flight path -- but it turns out that none of the neuralyzers are working at the moement, and the Japanese tech support team is on vacation this month in Tierra del Fuego. So she may be with us for an extended stay. Oh well. Just another week at the ranch.

9:37 PM | link |

Rogerian Therapy
Carl Rogers, one of the founders of Humanistic Psychology, pioneered what came to be called "client-centered" therapy. The point was to forge a supportive therapeutic alliance between psychotherapist and the individual seeking help. Rogers went out of his way to be non-directive and non-judgmental, often merely echoing or mirroring what the client was struggling to express. Here is a typical session, taken directly from Dr. Rogers' case files, to which EGR has recently gained exclusive access.

The date of this initial intake interview is 1981. Client is 30 years old. A rock and roll drummer with plans to launch a solo career, he has just put out his first album as the band's lead singer. Philip has a long history of schizophrenia accompanied by auditory and visual hallucinations, and paranoid delusions of persecution. He is not considered dangerous, in spite of becoming very loud and insistent when he believes he is not being listened to or properly understood.

Dr. Rogers: Hello, Philip. What are you feeling this evening?
Philip: I can feel it coming in the air tonight...
Dr. Rogers: You say you can feel it coming.
Philip: Oh Lord.
Dr. Rogers: And you are calling on God to help you.
Philip: I've been waiting for this moment, all my life...
Dr. Rogers: Yes, I can see that.
Philip: Oh Lord.
Dr. Rogers: This has been coming for quite some time, and you're understandably upset.
Philip: Can you feel it coming in the air tonight?
Dr. Rogers: Well, I can certainly empathize with the issues you are facing at the moment, yes.
Philip: Oh Lord, Oh Lord!
Dr. Rogers: Let's stay with what it is you see coming, and why this makes you so anxious.
Philip: Well, if you told me you were drowning...
Dr. Rogers: Yes?
Philip: I would not lend a hand.
Dr. Rogers: Now, I wonder why you would feel that way.
Philip: I've seen your face before my friend...
Dr. Rogers: Yes, it's quite possible we passed on the street at some time in the past.
Philip: But I don't know if you know who I am.
Dr. Rogers: Many of my clients express just such misgivings at the outset.
Philip: Well, I was there and I saw what you did.
Dr. Rogers: You believe you saw me doing something.
Philip: I saw it with my own two eyes.
Dr. Rogers: I see. And what was it that you believe you witnessed? [smiles understandingly]
Philip: So you can wipe off the grin, I know where you've been
Dr. Rogers: I'm right here with you now, Phil.
Philip: It's all been a pack of lies
Dr. Rogers: You feel that people have been untruthful with you. Can you recall when you first began to feel this way?
Philip: Well I remember...
Dr. Rogers: Yes, go on...
Philip: I remember, don't worry...
Dr. Rogers: No, I'm not worried. I think we're making excellent progress here.
Philip: How could I ever forget?
Dr. Rogers: Yes, that's certainly the way it is with these things.
Philip: It's the first time...
Dr. Rogers: You say this is the first time, yes. There's a first time for everything, isn't there.
Philip: ...the last time we ever met.
Dr. Rogers: Oh, I understand. You're referring to when you think you saw me doing something that time we must have encountered each other on the street.
Philip: But I know the reason why you keep your silence up.
Dr. Rogers: You believe that I'm being less communicative with you than you'd like, and you think you understand the reason for this.
Philip: No you don't fool me!
Dr. Rogers: You think I'm attempting to lie to you like all those others. But you are resisting, not letting yourself become confused.
Philip: The hurt doesn't show, but the pain still grows.
Dr. Rogers: Yes, you are experiencing a lot of anxiety, and you're saying most people don't see that.
Philip: It's no stranger to you or me
Dr. Rogers: How true. You can say that again.
Philip: And I can feel it coming in the air tonight...
Dr. Rogers: [looking at watch] Well, Phil, it looks as if that's all we have time for this evening.
Philip: Oh Lord! Oh Lord! [client becomes agitated, distraught, begins screaming and banging on interview table.]
Dr. Rogers: [running out into hall] Nurse! 500 milligrams of chlorpromazine, iv. Stat!

3:33 PM | link |

Friday, August 15, 2003
Instant Trauma Reading List

9:36 PM | link |

Thursday, August 14, 2003
Insignificant Others
RageBoy, meet Dharma Girl. Dharma Girl, meet RageBoy.

Well, this is a fine how do you do. Especially as Buddhadharma warns against rage as one of the Three Poisons: Passion, Aggression & Ignorance. I do pretty good with passion and ignorance too. Of course, the Vajrayana had a crucially different take on the essential nature of poison -- i.e., that it, along with the rest of the phenomenal universe (as if there were another kozmik zip code), well... er... you see... doesn't have one. In contrast, the Arhats of the (much) earlier Hinayana persuasion are purported to have had heart attacks on hearing -- as Gregory Bateson might have said -- news of this difference. (Geese are flying information. But that's a koan for another day, perhaps.)

A modicum of context might be good, huh? OK, so Dharma Girl yesterday posted a little rant titled Love vs. Attachment. Before you go read it, however, can I ask a question? I mean, can we talk? I'm wondering if Dharma Girl is one of those titles like the one Kerouac picked for his book, Dharma Bums, back when the Diamond Sutra was still hip and pot was a whole lot cheaper. It always cracks me up when New Age drivel (with which DG's cogitation is dripping, btw) invokes Eastern Spirituality, as if "it" were some homogeneous body of thought. For instance, Buddhism and Hinduism have about as much in common as Eminem and Tipper Gore. True, both sets are related, but not in the sense that knee-jerk New Age ecumenism would have you think. Now, I'm not saying that these good people are trying to trick you or anything. No. I'm saying they're stupid. For instance Part II, Buddhism is an atheistic "religion." If this surprises you, it's probably because you're a White Person, who like most of us, still believes deep down that the rest of the world has never ceased to be our very own colonial oyster. If we can't have your land anymore, your raw materials, your labor, your women, well hell, we can still expropriate your culture. And give you McDonalds and DisneyWorlds where your temples and pagodas used to be. Glass half full. Cheer up. Namaste, motherfuckers!

Yeah, anyway. While most New Agers know full well that "ego" is considered an obstacle to "Enlightenment" in some Buddhist traditions -- yes, Virginia, there are more than one -- these same people are shocked, simply shocked I tell you, to hear that "God" is considered no less an obstacle. And for the same reasons. Hindus, on the other hand, are dyed in the wool theists. Got God? Hell, they got a million of em. Now please understand, I'm not making fun of other peoples' sacred traditions here. Would I do that? I'm just saying that folding Buddhists and religious Hindus into some OneWorld® "Eastern Spirituality" stew is like talking about the shared agenda of Southern Baptists and drug-crazed hippie Satan worshipers. "Oh yes, you mean American Spirituality. With the holy rollers and the goat's head soup..."

But let's skip over the fine points of Buddhist doctrine, shall we? And get straight to the ass kicking. I ain't makin any fancy claims here, but fair warning: pacemakers may be affected. Assuming that you've read DG's essay (or did you just come for the flamage?), here's the comment I posted on her blog. I've added a handful of hyperlinks for strictly commercial purposes.

I knew Pema a long time ago. And there's one little difference between her and most everyone else on the planet that you neglect to mention -- or perhaps failed to notice. To wit: Pema is a nun. You wanna be a nun, too, I say go for it! Cloistered, even better. Then you'd blog me no more of your nunnish advice. So happy to hear that YOU have found the perfect relationship, while the rest of us simper our lives away in needy cowardice. This post is an extended exercise in self-serving "spiritual" oneupsmanship, and on many counts, simply ignorant of the psychodynamics of both relationship and attachment. Granted, you're not alone in thinking this way. Unfortunately. But that doesn't make what you're thinking any more legitimate than the opinion of folks -- like, say, myself -- who believe that people who base their bond with each other on imagined "past lives" should not be allowed to a) type, or b) possess sharp instruments. Time allowing, I'll have more to say about this on my blog later this evening. Look for it under the head "Insignificant Others." Hope you've got a nice snug pair of asbestos knickers, Dharma Girl!

love & light


As I write this, I've got Bonnie Raitt spinning on the EGR HQ jukebox. And she's saying true love is hard to find. True love is hard to find. True love is hard to find. Like that. Must think it bears repeating. And me, hey I'm with Bonnie. And now, she's doing this number with Sippie Wallace: Woman Be Wise (Don't Advertise Your Man). "She's lovin' your man / and in your own damn bed! / Better call for the doctor / gotta investigate your head!" (Last time I called the Doctor... but no, let's leave that one with the geese.)

Are these lyrics pertinent to the present discussion? Not really. Well, not necessarily specifically. It's just that I'm sitting here thinking that these two women -- one black, one white -- would gang up to what we call rip you a new asshole for the patent bullshit you wrote about Love vs. Attachment. For instance, when Raitt sings "There's an aching in my head / from a bed I can't get used to" and "Honey, half of me is gone away / from a love I learned to cling to" on My First Night Alone Without You, imagine how comforted she'd be by your compassionate words, Dharma Girl: "If you cannot heal yourself on your own, and you are depending on someone else to come along and fix things for you, you are essentially giving up and handing over the responsibilities to somebody else." Two things occur immediately: 1) yours doesn't rhyme, and 2) you can't dance to it. Well, three things actually. The third of which is that any self-respecting woman in pain from an important relationship ending would punch you in the mouth if you said that to her face. And I'd be happy to hold her coat while she worked out on you.

Despite the tone of my remarks thus far, I'm in strong agreement with you on this whole strange business of finding The One. You write: "The problem is not that you haven't found 'the one.'" Yes! But then our paths rapidly diverge. I agree this is not "the problem" because... well, precisely What One would that be? The One decreed in the Great Divine Plan, which btw, perversely makes it impossible to find that person. Unless you are Dharma Girl, naturally, and have achieved some sort of detached but fulfilling arrangement that can be walked away from without regret to facilitate the pursuit of the more important life goal of (let us all bow our heads for a moment here) working on yourself.

"I could wake up tomorrow and be changed from the person I was the day before in such a way that we can no longer be together."

Oh yeah, you go girl!

btw, I wonder if "the man [you] adore" noticed that you started that sentence as a subjunctive "could" construction, but ended it with a declarative: "...we can no longer be together." (Dude, what's your woman trying to tell you here?)

Of course, you "doubt that this would happen." Most people would say that this had something to do with knowing the person they're with, having established some critical measure of trust. But, you know, just for the sake of argument, let's say that your past-life partner in stoic what're-ya-gonna-do acceptance of the unpredictability of what we here in Boulder call "uncontrolled growth" (and I call the entropy gradient)... let's say he tells you one afternoon next week that his values have... uh, evolved and now he's shacked up with this totally rockin bleach-blond babe name of Barbarella and, well, it sure has been great and all, but b'bye...

And yeah, I really do understand. He would never do that. Barbarella's just not his type. And anyway, he's sublimated all his libido into that novel. Right? Right. But are you sure? Actually, your point is that you're not sure at all. That there is no surety to be had about these things. If they do happen, well, that's the way God planned it. Or something. And really, it's just one more yummy opportunity to work on you. Toward some unspecified end. Because you will be happier that way? Because you'll then be free to pursue that special hobby you recommend to us spiritually lazy, psychologically insecure peons? Or because it will constitute that tried-and-true old standby (not to mention standing joke), The Learning Experience?

Let me suggest another possible outcome of our hypothetical scenario. My guess is that if Billy one day up and dumped you -- not that I'm saying his name is Billy, necessarily; you know better than I do on that score; I should hope -- you'd be crying out the other side of your mouth. Yeah, and I'm guessing you'd be sounding a whole lot more like Bonnie Raitt or Bessie Smith ("if I call three times a day, baby / come and drive my blues away...") than some plastic faux-TyBeeShin White Tara wannabe.

This kind of reaction to loss is what we non-Eastern-Spirituality types call "being human." You ought to take it for a spin sometime instead of laying all this self-righteous self-promotion-diguised-as-sage-advice on people unfortunate enough not to have discovered, as you so obviously have, the ultimate algorithms of the heart.

I'd like to think that my boundless compassion -- notice I didn't use the "N" word even once -- has helped you see the light, in however small a way. May all beings be happy, etc. yada yada. Me big-heap bodhisattva, baby, you betcha! But I dunno, Dharma Girl. Maybe you should listen more closely to your own excellent counsel. Maybe you should look inside yourself first, instead of relying on someone else to do the job for you.

And maybe. just maybe, you should get down off your high horse and take a walk on the wild side now and then. Ventilate that "self-esteem" a little. Remember what Pema Chodron said? "Attachment... exaggerates others' good qualities and makes us crave to be with them." And I hope you'll remember what I said to top off this ever so satisfying flame. You ready? OK then, read my lips: That's why Pema's not a blogger.

And I am.

Look, I know I've been a bit rough on you here, DG. Sorry. Really. It's just that I woke up this morning and was changed from the person I was the day before in such a way that we can no longer be together.

Knowing you'll understand...

RB (riding off into the sunset to live the common* human fantasy of love everlasting -- or lasting, at any rate, as long as he can, being mortal, hope to help to make it last)

* COMMON: adjective
1 a: of or relating to a community at large: PUBLIC - "work for the common good"
1 b: known to the community - "common fears"
1 x: what RageBoy means - "shared human aspiration"

5 a: falling below ordinary standards: SECOND-RATE
5 b: lacking refinement: COARSE
5 x: what Dharma Girl means - "vulgar human delusion"

Take yer pick. From Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, Eleventh Edition (with slight modifications).

6:22 AM | link |

Wednesday, August 13, 2003
these titles are getting pretty explicit. damn!

3:54 PM | link |

from the sublime to the ridiculous
we get mail...
Yo, Chris,

Something you may be interested in ... looks like your new apartment is full of negative energy, this lady claims she can "Suck it all out .. “ No, I am not making this shit up...

2:56 PM | link |

1:03 AM | link |

Tuesday, August 12, 2003
man, how did I miss this one?
(But where did she get the idea I was "unpretentious"?)
5 out of 5 stars "You have GOT to READ this guy!!", January 27, 2002
Reviewer: Sharon from Greenville, NC USA
That was my introduction just over a year ago to Entropy Gradient Reversals and the evil genius mind(s) behind it, Christopher Locke/RageBoy. From that first mind-blowing, breathless reading of his newsletter, I was alternately charmed, alarmed and disarmed by the decidedly unpretentious Chris Locke. His new book, the Bombast Transcripts, a collection of essays previously published to the Entropy Gradient Reversals mailing list, contains that first newsletter that caught my imagination, and so many more.

As I've read through this book, I have found myself again reacting to it in the visceral way that I had to become accustomed to as one of his faithful Valued Readers at EGR. While some may call him pompous and crass, I find him to be merely open and honest. Then again, I've always had a soft spot for intelligent, over-indulgent, semi-vulgar Don Quixotes. His chosen windmills are big business that don't have a clue (IBM et all, no small potatoes here) and, while a book about business practices would normally make my eyes glaze over while putting me in a semi-catatonic state, I find this book to be human and engaging at every turn. Each essay stands on it's own as either a rant or a screed, yet each could also be expanded into its own little book. Irreverent, engaging, transforming, contemplative, hilarious....and each page is more of the same.

While I read Locke's words, I get the feeling that I am a part of something much bigger and more important than anyone can guess, especially those that think the internet is nothing more than a collection of chatrooms and porn sites. No, I get the feeling I'm getting a glimpse of a creation, a rapturous inferno of truth and emotion, two key elements that, when exposed to each other under the heat of RageBoy's passion, cause a brilliant flash of evolution that could change the world as we know it. What a wonderful world that would be.

Idealistic? Maybe. Bombastic? Hardly. Evil Genius?? Indeed.

11:27 PM | link |

i think my cat just barfed
Selene revises her blog and blames it all on "my lovely father." That would be me. I think you should all know that the only reason I ever update my blog is when my lovely daughter is pestering me! btw, here are some CDs by her favorite band. A.F.I. is pretty damn good, too. Girl has good taste in screaming freaks!

10:50 PM | link |

Sunday, August 10, 2003
Yahoo Personals: The Don't Example
Well, I took the plunge. I mean, sure all these women love me. They can't help themselves. I understand. But they're all in exotic places like Zimbabwe or New Jersey or Denmark. And I finally had to ask myself -- taking a verbatim tip from ex-date Anomalie Aesculapius -- "What's in it for me?" It was then that I realized my mistake. All this time, my hostile, domineering superego introject has been generating internal dialogue along the lines of: "Take yourself in hand, son!" and "Different strokes for different folks!" and "Get a grip on yourself!" I now see that I was taking this advice a little to literally. If I got a grip on myself one more time, I was going to go crazy (that is, inasmuch as there would be any real travel involved). What I needed was someone else to take me in hand and get a grip on me! What I needed, DUH!, was a real-live non-virtual non-cyberspatial hot-to-trot woman. So, on the recommendation of two women who've reported good results -- i.e., both are now getting laid on a regular basis -- I decided to hook up with Yahoo Personals. Not sure if you can see my profile there without signing up, so I've dropped the main bits in below, first describing myself, then specifying what I'm looking for in a potential lover.

third-rate romance, low-rent rendezvous

ME: I've never really done this kind of thing before. Have you? <g> But actually, I haven't. I'm a published writer, a prolific blogger, bit of a maniac, really, very funny (ask anyone) and wicked smart. but despite appearances, quite loving. unless you mess up, that is. then you will have to be disciplined, yes. I enjoy smoking and sub-zero air conditioning, checking my mailbox, and reading about severe personality disorders. I abhor exercise, nature and anything organic. you like hiking? well take one now. on the other hand, I am quite fond of sex. you know: passionate scorpio borderline seeks darkly vibrant satanica pandemonium for quiet dinners and late-nite boating accidents sorta thing. incredibly, I've been clean and sober (as they say) for nearly 20 years. before that, take a wild guess. if you have read this far and not laughed, you need professional help. do I SOUND like a professional? also, I don't get along real good with tauruses (references on request). and look, it's not my fault I live in Boulder. well, actually, as I am coming to Take Responsibility for My Own Behavior, yes, it is my fault. what's not my fault is Boulder. if you live here too and feel like an alien at a halloween party, we should compare notes. if you are fortunate enough to live elsewhere than the fabled oz, we can compare notes anyway. or dot dot dot.

SHE: you enjoy sunsets, small furry animals, and serious automotive mishaps. you are deeply spiritual, and especially into aromatherapy and shamanic etymology. you love the dalai lama as if he were your own dad. you love eminem as if he weren't. you have never read The Verbally Abusive Relationship, nor do you plan to (very important). your idea of a good time is watching Repo Man or From Dusk Till Dawn while doing Tai Chi, the NY Times Sunday crossword, and Charlie Chan impressions. in other words, you are versatile. you have a good sense of humor, but not better than mine. you find controlling, needy men attractive, but you are working on your issues. you are poised, self-confident and look really hot in a one-piece bikini. you have multiple PhDs in nuclear physics, semiotics, and animal husbandry. you are cool under pressure. you like yo-yo ma and zz top, not necessarily in that order. you wonder about the meaning of life. you wonder if this is really all there is. you are ready to rock.

ANALYSIS: So far, I'm not getting what you'd call inundated with offers. But it's only been up for a day. And the way I figure it, even if I don't meet a woman with all these fine qualities -- that is to say, the woman of my dreams -- at least it's good therapy. Because where else do you get to brag about yourself non-stop with interesting looking (and, some, actually interesting) babes? Why has it taken me so long to realize that this is the true future of blogging, where it recedes once again out of the vulgar public sphere and returns once again to where it always belonged: sweet one-on-one pillow-talk lies, snuggled down deep and comfy between creamy satin sheets.

2:00 AM | link |

"RageBoy: Giving being fucking nuts a good name since 1985."
~D. Weinberger
28 October 2004

Chris Locke's photos More of Chris Locke's photos

Until a minute ago, I had no photos. I still have no photos to speak of. I don't even have a camera. But all these people were linking to "my photos." It was embarassing. It's still embarassing. But I'm used to that.

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