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SubGenius BBQ at John Shirley's

I’m back from visiting Hungary, Switzerland, and NYC. I’ve really missed having my laptop and my blog. Like part of my brain’s been gone. I’ll be organazing some handwritten notes into bloggable journal entries, also processing a mass of photos.

But to get things going let’s jump up to real time.

Last night we went to a barbeque at John Shirley’s house up north of Berkeley.

A lot of SubGenius and SF types were there, it was great to be speaking colloquial English about what I consider to be interesting things. [See my earlier entry for some good links about the Church of the SubGenius.]

John put match-light briquettes into one of those firestarter tubes, producing a pillar of fire. Mimi Heft was worried it would set the palm tree alight.

Among the August company was Philo Drummond, co-founder of the Church of the SubGenius, the Overman himself. Philo has one of those Texas accents where it sounds like each syllable is individually battered and deep-fried.

[Image of “Bob” Dobbs from the Autodesk CelLab package I wrote with John Walker; image was licensed from the Church of the SubGenius and used as a start screen for a Belousov-Zhabotinsky cellular automaton. Vile lichenous scrolls will emerge.]

Philo used to work for Bell Telephone in Texas, selling yellow-page ads, I believe, and he discovered the image of SubGenius icon of “Bob” Dobbs in a book of clip art supplied to yellow-page advertisers. Does that mean “Bob” isn't real? Far from it. The missing link to the puzzle emerged in an interview I conducted with Paul Mavrides for Mondo 2000 in August, 1993, “You Can't See Your Own Eyes: The Art of Paul Mavrides,”, a cover story, now online for the first time. By the way the tax case Paul mentions at the end of that old article was won, over and done years ago (1996) and the CA state sales tax code amended after that to further protect artists' free speech rights.

[Mondo cover by Bart Nagel, modeled by Heidi Foley.]

Yes in this encounter, I learned the origin of the clip-art image itself. In Paul's words:

'”Bob” posed for the 1947 yellow-page portrait. He went to some effort to make this known among his friends. In the post-Hiroshima 40s “Bob” was a drifter earning his way by such day-wage means as modelling. I bought the handgun used to assassinate him in 1984, the less said about that, the better. J.R. “Bob” Dobbs is a mystery enfolded by an enigma bound by a puzzle wrapped in a strip of bacon surrounded by creamy nougat and a rich, milk chocolate coating held together with a toothpick, served on a greasy paper napkin— an indigestible canape for the No Age.' — Paul Mavrides

It's great to be back in the California opera.

2 Responses to “SubGenius BBQ at John Shirley's”

  1. Cardinal Sin Says:

    Thanks for the cool view! Almost like being there…

  2. Jenny Kwan Says:

    Thank you for the new books, the dada books, they are fully awesome!

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