Monday, May 4, 2009


Back around 15 years ago, pre-internet, there were these things called Bulletin Board Systems, or BBSs. A person would set up a BBS on their computer and other people would dial in to exchange messages, share files, or play games. Picture it like Facebook, only for people in your local area, and only if one person could log in at a time. Technology was amazing!

Some BBSs were connected together in a network - when no one was logged into the BBS, that BBS would call up another BBS, they'd transfer the messages between each other, and you could get a response to your message from a completely different BBS in like two or three days! Amazing!

Anyhow, the reason for this post is to talk about the sad sad fate of one of my most prized possessions. You see, there was a network of BBSs called TATTLENET, run by Bonehead and Vanity Flair of Land of the Lone Butthead BBS. TATTLENET was fun - they had restaurant meetups which the dubbed Bonehead's Secret Tea Parties and meets in the park called Vanity's Vicious Volleyball Tourneys (VVVTs). I own both TATTLENET T-shirts, and the alias I used (Rigor Mortis, how fancy and dark) at the time is listed on both.

One year at a Secret Tea Party, the inaugural TATTLEAWARDS were given out. I won TATTLENET'S BIGGEST FLAG-WAVER (Bonehead had posted a message one day asking for people to advertise TATTLENET in the most exuberant manner possible - the first three people doing so would receive a bottle of Pepsi. As he had not explicitly specified to do so elsewhere, I responded immediately within the same message forum. Because I'm hilarious that way. Not to be one-upped, a few weeks later a confused looking Fed Ex deliveryman dropped off a box from "Land of The Lone Butthead" containing a bottle of Pepsi) The awards given out each consisted of a labeled styrofoam cup with three plastic forks and a ball of aluminum foil forming a T on top.

The night after winning this award, I posted a message describing how I'd been approached on the bus by a group of girls asking what it was that I was holding. They were less than impressed with my explanation, and walked away. I felt so suave.

The following year the awards were held again. We got to the end and I had no award. Then out of nowhere an announcement was made - there was one more award to give out. There was some sort of speech about great contributions, blah blah blah, then out of a large bag came a TATTLEAWARD. It looked just like any other TATTLEAWARD, cup, forks, and foil. Only it had sequins.

Oh, and also:

Everyone whooped and called out "Speech! Speech!" I stood up, waited for the noise to die down and said "Ladies, gentlemen, (oh, and Bonehead), thank you very much for this award. I'd like to say one thing, and that is this: Today is a very special day, because today... I drove here."

And now I say goodbye to this dust collector, as it travels to its final resting place in the garbage. Or blue box. I don't know, are sequins recyclable?

Not thrown out:

The Death of Flaming BBS award:

And for some reason I just can't let go of this: