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Dec 21, 2005



So... many... snarky... comments!

Eh, I'll avoid it and reveal something unusual about myself: I'm fluent in Pig Latin, as in I can speak and understand Pig Latin as easily as I can English. Ask me if you see me at a conference some day and I'll show anyone. :)

Have fun,


Is there a witchhunt scheduled, or do we just throw confetti? Personally, I figure if I just add a bucket type thing to the noose, it'd be a great confetti launcher...


So... what was Ted's crime (punishable by death)?


On November 10, 1989, I illegally crossed the German-German border, an act which at that time was still subject to a shoot-to-kill order.

It was the weekend the Berlin Wall was opened. The main crossing points were open, both ways (that was the policy innovation!), but everyone was still forced to obtain a temporary visa to cross. That piece of paper was to be turned in when you crossed back. But I happened upon a small hole in a deserted location. I guess somebody had been busy chipping away the night before, but they given up and gone off to join the big crowds forming in the Potsdamer Platz, Brandenburg Gate, Friederichstrasse, Checkpoint Charlie, etc. Anyways, I ducked through it and found myself back in West Berlin. The day-visa was still in my pocket, and I keep it as a reminder, framed on my wall.


I should specify: I crossed without permission from East to West. THAT'S what got you killed.


Being propositioned by Frank Sinatra sounds pretty dangerous, too!


It's fun to see background bits like this—in particular, I'm curious to hear more details about Richard and the sea slug! There's got to be a great story behind that. :)


Torley Torgeson>I'm curious to hear more details about Richard and the sea slug! There's got to be a great story behind that.

I was in Singapore, part of a group being wined and dined by a high-ranking government education department official. We all had a menu, we all made our choices, then the official ordered for all of us without any consultation. One of the things he was keen for us to try was some very special abalone (a kind of sea slug). It was vile - like eating pencil eraser yet with a worse taste. When I asked him what was so special about it, he replied, proudly, that it was its rarity: there were fewer than 100 left in the world, and it was on the verge of extinction. We were supposed to be impressed at the lengths he had gone to to deliver this delicacy to our mouths, even though none of us had asked for it, nor would have done if we'd have known its provenance beforehand.

The thing that was especially curious was how come it was so rare when it tasted so bad. I can only imagine it had powerful aphrodisiac qualities or something, although if it did they had no discernable influence on me...


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