(C) 1998 Andrew C. Stone

    Readying for a major software release such as Rhapsody 1.0 is not all just getting up at 3AM and working for 20 hours at a stretch, days on end. Not during the summer, and not if you have kids. One of the major benefits of parenting is that it provides you the cultural link between your generation's subculture and the one that follows. And you get to view the dance between the culture jammers and corporate marketing which seeks to steal the face right off the head of the counterculture.
    For example, the sporting cloths manufacturer Gecko ripped the Grateful Dead off with its "Geckful Dead" tshirts that I've seen recently. I'll take the name back with one more twist, and submit "Geekful Dead" for the cybernetic cognescenti.
    My teenage daughter has been making sure I don't get terminal geekosity - I took her and her boyfriend to see the X Files last weekend, and yesterday the entire extended family went to the Lillith Fair.
    Now, having withstood the back-to-school dread of every Sunday night growing up in the sixties with Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. and the TV show The FBI (can you hear the voice adding "In Living color" afterwards?) I understand the need for the intelligence agencies in the USA to continually propagandize their nobility and make their agents seem like super heroes. In this way, they can recruit another generation of
gun running, drug pushing civil servants. In the case of the X-Files, the public relations job was well done, although I'm having difficulty sleeping at night!

    Anyone who has lurked on the Newsgroup alt.conspiracy knows most of the facts about
FEMA anyway, but who has the time to sort between information and disinformation? T.S. Elliot, forgive me:

    Not with a bang, but with an information overload.    
    I wish I could have segued and said that the Lillith Fair was an unadulterated egalitarian and futuristic vision free of the patriarchal control freaks which seem to dominate our lives. The music and musicians were remarkable, and
Sarah McLachlan, the shining light behind Lillith, is sort of an Apple darling - at MacWorld San Francisco this year, they used her Building A Mystery song in the QuickTime demo.
    But alas, what the next generation wouldbe counterculturalists were inundated with was www.Kodak.com, Budweiser, Starbucks (who asked us to leave the shade of their corporate outpost), and other astroturfy corporate endeavors. To be fair, there was a smattering of true grassroots and women owned organizations represented, but for the most part, it was The Big White Patriarchal Machine making money off the rebels and misfits. And no one seeming to notice! I noticed, and let me tell you, I feel much better having said it.
    The biggest hit amongst the vendors was the Excite booth - they were giving away a free trip to Europe. Of course, you had to give them all your personal information to be eligible - just think of the forthcoming spam headed your way! Regardless, the Excite presence showed me that Apple Computer missed an excellent marketing opportunity. A few iMacs would have turned heads no doubt.
    Next week - live and direct from MacWorld New York City!