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Matt's LiveJournal

Random ramblings of a programmer, photographer, journalist and runner

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laptop, geek, MacBook, bursting, breakout

Questions Meme

In the absense of much actual content from me recently, I saw this meme and thought it might be interesting... Normal service will be resumed when my life becomes less dull

How many times has someone on your friends list posted about something and you were really confused, but you didn't want to ask because you knew you SHOULD know? How many times have you felt guilty asking a close LJ friend a question that should be obvious?

Well, here's your chance.

If you've missed a few things, missed an entry and are confused, ask meanything. Even something EXTREMELY basic, like where I live! I'm not allowed to get even slightly irritated at any of the questions - we've all missed things before.

Nothing off limits :)

EDIT: Anonymous posting allowed, just because I've never done it before...

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Not sure anonymous posting IS allowed, you know...

No? Damn. How do I do that, then?

Re: Er...

Aha. I had foolishly assumed that because LJ gave me the option of posting anonymously, it would actually go ahead and do that when I submitted the comment that I was testing with. As it is, it does my favourite user interface thing of "You can choose this button if you like" *click* "Please don't choose this button". Lovely piece of design...

Should be sorted now :)

Curses! I think I missed my chance. Either that, or nobody wanted to ask a question...

Testing, testing, 1235

Here's a question for you. Why are you called Gothick?


Cool; I'm glad someone wanted to know something *grin* And this one might be worth explaining quite fully, because a lot of people ask the question, and I normally just say "well, it's a long story."

Back in 1991, I needed a username for a multi-user shared hallucination known as Cheeseplant's House, run by Daniel Stephens at Warwick.

I needed to invent my first online persona, in other words.

Two major influences in my life back then were gothic music, in particular the Fields of the Nephilim1, and William Gibson. In William Gibson's Count Zero, he describes a street culture/gang known as gothicks. The particular quote is:

"At least twenty Gothicks postured in the main room, like a herd of baby dinosaurs, their crests of lacquered hair bobbing and twitching. The majority approached the Gothick ideal: tall, lean, muscular, but touched by a certain gaunt restlessness, young athletics in the early stages of consumption. The graveyard pallow was mandatory, and Gothic hair was by definition black. Bobby knew that the few who couldn't warp their bodies to fit the subcultural template were best avoided; a short Gothick was trouble, a fat Gothic homicidal."

So, basically, this paragraph was fresh in the mind of a rather overweight cyberpunk fan who was also massively into gothic music at a time when he needed to choose a unique and personalised username for an early online virtual world.

I then proceeded to "meet" quite a few people in the virtual world before meeting them in real life, which meant that several people I knew at university and from further afield knew me only as "Gothick" until they got to know me quite well. Plus, as there are quite a large number of Matthews in my generation, so plenty of people who knew I was called Matt would still use "Gothick" for the purposes of disambiguation :)

This alias then became my username on the University's computer system, and thus my email address, spreading the name even further across the planet. I still use it as a username in systems, because it's normally pretty much unique, so I don't have to muck about trying to find a name that's not already been taken...

So. That, in a fairly large nutshell, is why people call me Gothick, even though I don't actually dress like a goth, and never used to (although I always have had a fondness for wearing black in general...) And it's William Gibson's fault that it's got a "c" and a "k" on the end!

1Who remain such an influence that I wore a vintage Fields of the Nephilim T-shirt in to work today, and have already checked to see if the rumoured reunion gigs are actually happening...

A most satisfactory response. Thanks!

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