Otherstream at 20: 2007



Past the halfway point now, and only eight days until the anniversary. Highlights and favorites from 2007 (the year I started grad school and actually started working toward having a real career) follow. I have to admit very little of it is especially entertaining or inspiring.














Otherstream at 20: 2001


Sorry for that delay. I didn’t create enough of these before I left on vacation, thinking I’d catch up on the road, but the “cut and paste” nature of these particular posts made that a major pain on the iPad. Twelve days till the anniversary.

So 2001 was the year in which I lost one of my oldest friends, had major health issues, and met the love of my life, among other things. And a surprisingly latge number of things still managed to annoy me. A pretty intense year, all in all.

Some highlights:













Otherstream at 20: 1996

Image 14 - 5-19-96-PICT

13 January 2016 will be the twentieth anniversary of the site that became Otherstream. In a rather egotistical observance of that anniverasry, I’m focusing on one year per day in the twenty days leading up to the anniversary, linking to some favorite and important (or just inane and disposable) posts from each year. Today, we start with 1996.

Otherstream did not start as a journal/blog site–or even one named “Otherstream.” Planet SOMA was more of a static site with information about San Francisco neighborhoods, some dirty pictures, rants about annoying aspects of faggotry, and some biographical info about me. It was the early days of the web and frankly, any presence at all was was still much more than 99% of people had in that pre-Wordpress, pre-Facebook era when most people didn’t even know what a website was. i didn’t start doing personal updates till several months in.

Aside from the birth of the website, 1996 was pretty pivotal in other ways as well. It marked the end of traditional full-time employment for the next six years, the end of the car I moved to San Francisco with, and several interesting road trips. It was really the beginning of a new era for me.






What has Sheraton done for me lately?


Today I was at the Sheraton giving a presentation on libraries and archives doing community history outreach.

The last time I was in the Sheraton was sometime the 1980s. It was still the Holiday Inn. Sex was involved.

The time before that, I accidentally met REO Speedwagon. They offered me a beer. I declined.

I’m pretty sure I enjoyed giving the presentation much more than I enjoyed meeting REO Speedwagon.

Honestly, I can’t really remember how much I enjoyed the sex.

Randomly Thursday night

Random realization upon hitting the ripe old age of “middle” (an ongoing series):

  • it is OK to pay movers to handle the big stuff.
  • if you don’t ask anyone to help you move, you are absolved of any responsibility to help anyone else move.
  • The only reason I still have cable is to keep TCM. Now that I no longer need cable to do that, there is no good reason not to cut the cord.
  • Good meatloaf is always worth an extra five-minute drive. Really good meatloaf even merits an extra ten-minute drive.
  • Having a job and a boss that you like is an incredibly wonderful thing.


So that article about which I was so stressed went through peer review and was accepted with minimal revisions in four days. That’s a pretty enviable turnaround time for an academic journal, some of which take many months for a decision (a good example being the other article of mine that got accepted this summer). Even better, this one was accepted in time for me to add it to the tenure package, giving me two extra publications to include.

And I’m already done with the revisions.

Pretty good way to start a long weekend, methinks.


I finally submitted that article, approximately seven hours before it was due.

  • It’s either going to be really good or really awful. I basically wrote the whole thing over the course of about a week and a half, due to all the drama in my universe this summer, and I didn’t even have a chance to let someone else read over it. Pressing “submit” felt kind of like having unprotected sex with a complete stranger.
  • When your article is to some extent a case study about things you did at your own institution, which is named in the text, the concept of a blind peer review starts to sound a little bit ludicrous
  • There are no journal content management systems that are not incredibly irritating for authors. None. Not one. That includes the one we use for the two open access journals where I’m the managing editor.
  • Unless this article gets approved in the next two weeks, it will have no effect whatsoever on my tenure decision. I knew that going in. I still wrote it. Go figure.

I’m going to go have leftovers from last night’s delicious meal with no name now.

Randomly Sunday afternoon


No attention span. Latest stuff:

  • The house sale continues to be a nightmare, thanks to that fucking oil tank that we thought nine years ago would be “no big deal.” So far it’s probably cost me $15,000 and I still don’t have a clean bill of health. the buyers (and their lender) are getting nervous. So am I.
  • That said, the house is mostly cleared out. And the non-tank repairs came in at (slightly) under $6500, so there’s that. If I can keep expenses at this level, at least I won’t owe money at closing.
  • The chimney sweep was as cute as a bug’s ear. it was a lust connection.
  • After moving them yet again, I’m torn. Should I leave my records to someone I really like or to someone I really hate?
  • Finished my next article today, more or less. If I can get one or two of my librarian pals to give it a look tomorrow, I may actually get it submitted on time.
  • Pondering Pittsburgh for Labor Day weekend, as Toronto for Thanksgiving in October is looking much less likely.
  • Someone who gets it.
  • Best news of the week? I am once again not at Burning Man. That fact may make up for all my other stress.

Randomly Tuesday night

A few updates before bed:

  • I’m in the inspection and repair phase on the house. Assuming I get the state rebate for removing that oil tank and assuming the general repair list does not cost more than the current estimate from my handyman, I may manage to end up with a little bit of cash (albeit a good bit less than even my downpayment) after closing. I’ll still be selling the place at a significant loss, but at least I’m not underwater. And it’s worth it to finally close that chapter of my life.
  • I lucked out in that a couple of things I thought would be big issues–primarily some stairs the ex built that are sinking and have become a major eyesore but would also cost a fortune to remove, and some paving on the other side that drains in the wrong direction–were not fixes requested by the buyer. i dodged a bullet on those.
  • Even better, I’m doing surprisingly well selling the furniture, which gives me cash and makes moving easier.
  • Nashville was pleasant enough, all in all. My presentation went well and actually got a lot of positive feedback. I was able to do some Groceteria research and I may actually return for a weekend at some point, although I have no real desire for anything more than a weekend.
  • I’ve had a pretty prestigious publication accepted. More on that later.
  • I’m pondering my annual Thanksgiving trip to Toronto. I’ve been traveling a lot this year and I’m wondering if another big trip is a good idea. But I think I deserve a reward once the house is sold and the articles are done…and in general after the really shitty summer I’ve had. And the loonie is at an all-time low, so it’s a really good time to visit. I’ll keep you posted.
  • I didn’t sit through the Republican debate last week. I started watching for laughs–kind of like you’d start watching a bad movie–but the plot and the dialogue were so implausible that I just couldn’t swallow it, even as a farce.