\|/
    -POP- Hi!
/|\

Bill Wilkinson Clone FAQ

In March, 1996, I received email from Jonathan R Bezeau (Jonboy!) asking me questions about the above POP symbol I've occasionally used in the alt.stupidity newsfroup. It got me thinking about writing a FAQ. I posted a Request For Discussion about the idea in alt.stupidity and nobody had any objections. But then, nobody was in favor of it, either. So I put it off for a few months. Today (it's Thursday), I decided "what the hell, I'm as egotistical as the next man." So, with apologies to Spatch for stealing his FAQ-writing style, here goes.

(By the way, if none of this makes sense, lurk in alt.stupidity for a few months. It will then make even less sense.)


  • Why clones?
    I got the idea about the same time I came out of lurking in alt.stupidity in 1994. Besides my CI$ account, I had access to two newsreaders at work: one in Denver, Colorado, and one in Omaha, Nebraska. Sometimes, I'd follow up to the same post from all three accounts. To indicate that it was a clone...

  • What about that
     \|/
    -POP- routine?
     /|\
    

    Don't interrupt me, I was just getting to that.

  • Sorry.
    S'okay. To indicate that the followup was from a clone, I'd precede the response by
     \|/
    -POP-ing
     /|\
    

    into existence and saying "Hi!"

  • So what was the inspiration for the clones?
    "I Think We're All Bozos on this Bus" by the Firesign Theatre (David Ossman, Philip Proctor, Peter Bergman, and Phil Austin). It was recorded in 1971 and is about the future. In it, clones are HOLYGRAMS that pop into existence to provide information, amusement, and arrest you if you break the President or violate Robot's Rules of Order.

  • Huh?
    For more information on the Firesign Theatre, visit http://home.earthlink.net/~ritter/firesign/firesign.html.

  • Where is the "Hall of the Mushroom King?"
    The place mentioned in my CompuServe "Organization:" line is located somewhere near the Shadows. It's based upon an old Army nickname of mine. It doesn't have anything to do with false drugs.

  • Does this have anything to do with Super Mario, or is it a big Drug Reference?
    I'm not too familiar with Super Mario, other than knowing that it's a game or a cartoon. See above for big Drug References.

    When I was stationed in Frankfurt, Germany, I'd lay in my bunk, read books, and drink Pepsi® from the vending machine downstairs. The soft drink was supplied in paper cups. When I'd finish, I'd twist the cup and shape its base so that--when turned over--it looked like a mushroom. Then I'd place it with the others on the windowsill behind my bunk. There was a field of mushrooms there.

  • How do I get the Bill Wilkinson Tee-Shirt?
    Why would you want one of my Tee-Shirts? They have big sweat stains in the armpits.

  • How do I do that
                     \|/
                    -POP- thing?
                     /|\
    

    Put your thumb in your mouth, fill your mouth with air, and rapidly pull your thumb out. You should hear a sound similar to what a champagne cork makes when pulled out of the bottle. Do this each time you post to alt.stupidity and your coworkers in the neighboring cubes will start to avoid you.

  • Why does papa legba apologize to you when he calls someone else an idiot?

    For example:

From: papa@boi.hp.com (papa legba)
Newsgroups: alt.stupidity
Subject: Re: RFD The official religion of alt.stupidity.
Date: 31 May 1995 04:15:26 GMT
Organization: the bottom of Mud Lake

Steve (stevech@netcom.com) wrote:
: papa legba (papa@boi.hp.com) wrote:
: : Steve (stevech@netcom.com) wrote:
: : : Is there an official religion of alt.stupidity? Is it something we should
: : : adopt from the existing pool of stupid religions or should it be started
: : : from scratch? Do we have one god or many? What do we worship? Tortesses?
: : : And where does this religion stand on the eating of bacon? Is it cool
: : : only on Fridays or what? Not at all?

: : : ---Steve


: : 	Why are you asking a bunch of stupid people so many 
: : 	questions? Idiot. (sorry Bill)

: My name's not Bill. Stop being such a maroon! I wanna know what's the
: official religion of alt.stupidity. Or make one up if there is not already
: one. You, Papa, would have been my choice for God but ya gotta learn my
: name 'for I nominate ya.


	I was referring to Bill the Idiot. I always apologize when
	I use his name on someone else. Now can I be the god? Huh?
	Can I?

	-papa

    Come to think of it, that post from stevech@netcom.com (Steve Chandler, I believe) may have been the one that started the official alt.stupidity religion controversy in 1995.

    Anyway, the clone at the lookout server in Denver had previously posted a message entitled "Lookout!" The body of the message was simply "Lookout!"

    Later, Keylime followed up and called me an idiot for not warning him sooner that a book was about to fall on his head. (It took four hours for the message to reach him.) Me and my clones immediately started flaming each other by calling each other idiots--original subject forgotten. Kaj and a few other Stupidians jumped into the fray. Finally, (l)Laura or Tortess told all of us to shut up because we were making too much noise.

    Or something like that.

    Anyway, papa legba started the apology thingie after that.

  • What's behind the reference "once a saint, now a damned clone?"
    When Spatch and papa legba were fighting it out for the position of alt.stupidity God, Spatch started handing out titles. See the following:
From: papa@boi.hp.com (papa legba)
Newsgroups: alt.stupidity
Subject: Re: RFD The official religion of alt.stupidity.
Date: 1 Jun 1995 11:09:32 GMT
Organization: the bottom of Mud Lake

tv's Spatch (spatula@gecko.concorde.com) wrote:
: Bill Wilkinson (wxwilki@lookout) wrote:
: > \|/
: >-POP-  Hi!
: > /|\
: >
: >Hey!  I wanna be the patron saint or something!

: Bill Wilkinson and his many subsidiaries and franchises thereof is now the
: Patron Saint of Something here on alt.stupidity.

: Congratulations, Bill!

	Oh, sure. Haven't even beat me out for God yet, and you're
	already handing out political appointments. Pretty low for
	a deity wannabe.


	-papapraytome
    A few months later, someone in a post made a reference to "one of Bill's damned clones."

    Only in alt.stoopididity can a clone be a saint and damned at the same time.

  • What's the current status of the clones?
    The clone in Omaha is incommunicado. The borg server ran out of disk space and too many people were complaining that they couldn't do any work. (Me, for example. Did you know that a single 80-page FrameMaker® document with lots of illustrations in xwd format can eat up 20MB?) So news was shut down.

    The clone in Denver still reads the newsgroups but rarely posts due to tightened restrictions by his employers.

    I still post from CI$ now and then.

    A new clone, Wxwilki, has appeared on AOL. I have no clue as to what the Hell it's doing there.

  • Who wrote this FAQ?
    I did, silly. See the copyright notice below.

  • What music was played in the making of this FAQ?
    The music in my head...row, row, row your boat...

  • What chemicals were used in the making this FAQ?
    Boilermakers consisting of Johnny Walker Red and Budweiser.

  • Is there one last piece of advice you'd wish to bestow upon us?
    No.


Back to the Shadows again!

Copyright © 1996, Bill Wilkinson at the Hall of the Mushroom King.

Spatch-only-knows how this turd can be converted into money, but if you figure out a way, you must cut me in on the action.