Archive for December, 2004

December 17th, 2004

Tech Night Owl Live

New Tech Night Owl Live interview: Take Control of Mac OS X Backups–recording no longer available (December 17, 2004)

December 16th, 2004

Off to Patagonia

Well, that’s it. The bags have been packed, the out-of-office replies activated, the cat taken to the sitter’s house. We’re off in mere minutes for our long-awaited trip to Patagonia! Stories and pictures in the new year.

December 13th, 2004

The Evolution of Scrolling: Reinventing the Wheel

New TidBITS article: The Evolution of Scrolling: Reinventing the Wheel (2004-12-13)

December 7th, 2004

Driving Miss Loretta

As if rescuing chickens were not enough, I’ve just had yet another of those surreal experiences that seem to make my world go around.

Morgen is the Development Director for a nonprofit organization called Death Penalty Focus, and for months she’s been planning a major fundraiser that will take place this evening: a comedy event called “Stand-Up for Justice.” Several big-name comedians are participating. Actor Mike Farrell (Providence, M*A*S*H), who’s the president of the organization, will be acting as emcee, and will be joined by a number of other V.I.P. guests—including M*A*S*H costar Loretta Swit.

So yesterday Morgen called me from work in a panic to ask me if I could do her a favor. Would I be willing to be a chauffeur? I wasn’t sure what she meant by that, so she said, “We need someone to pick up Loretta Swit from the airport and drive her to her hotel.” The whole notion that a mere mortal should perform such a task was difficult for me to accept, but I agreed.

And so I did. The trip was completely uneventful; Loretta was perfectly nice, and that was pretty much that. I have had only a few close encounters with celebrities in my life, and I don’t really grasp the protocol and etiquette appropriate for interacting with the rich and famous. I’m not one to be star-struck, and I have no interest in autographs, pictures, and the like. I just want to be sure I don’t make a fool of myself or cause offense, and I think I succeeded in that.

Plus, now Loretta Swit can tell all her friends that she met that famous author Joe Kissell. “He was very down-to-earth,” she’ll say. “If I hadn’t known he was famous, I would have thought he was just an ordinary guy.”