Date: Thu, 3 Aug 1995 20:29:48 -0800
From: (Justin Hall)
Subject: UWU 1.0 - blue hair, ethnobotany and sexless mass appeal

- UnderWord Update 1.0

Howdy Folks -

Thanks for being on my wavelength.

Here's the latest in life, links and the persuit of enlightenment.

I am about to leave sf for a few days. I just temporarily dyed my hair blue, I'm headed up to the eel river two hours north of San Francisco for Raggae on the River, a three days sun fun and naked bodies festival. I'm going with a bunch of the Cyborganic crew.

Unfortunately, I will not be able to plug in for up to the minute web page progress reports. I'll actually be offline for at least three days! I haven't done that in months.

I will write all about it. Heck, I might even take some pictures.

Next week is Siggraph '95 in Los Angeles. This graphics conference once epitomized the fringe of freak visionary computing, now it is mega-huge, with tons of corporate sponsored blow-outs. More as it develops.

I've written a column for Howard Rheingold about exposing myself online, telling stories and putting some soul into the system.

We spent the day together yesterday in Mill Valley. He doesn't drink enough water. His family is hilarious and strange, I'm preparing stories about them for publication at my site.

He introduced me to his ethnobotanist friend Tom Colson who runs a local company called Shaman Pharmaceuticals. Tom spends a few months a year in a different indigenous culture talking to medicine women, shamans and healers, describing illness and disease and collecting plant samples of their recommended cures. Then he comes over here and makes western style salable medecine out of them. Howard has written a column about him:

I have found two folks who are mourning their fathers online. I created a page linking them, and hoping to discover more:

If you know of any others, send 'em on over!

Discussion rages on -ulist- about my Chandra story, the details: too much, simply true, or free speech? How do you tell the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, without possibly hurting someone's feelings?

Send mail to with
subscribe ulist <your e-mail address>
in the body of the message.

Funny story from my friend Patrick Combs. He got one of those "You may win $90,000!" sample checks in the mail, and deposited it at his bank. Pretty soon, he looks over his balance, and discovers he has $96,000 in there...$$tablecontents.html

Read his story before it appears mangled in next week's Wall Street Journal!

Yesterday I expanded my scope; I have much to say about people I knew when I was young, music I listened to, drugs I took. More /vita/ coming down the pipeline.

Talked to Kevin Wendle today. At 29, he was in charge of developing programming for Fox when it was just starting up. He runs programming for c|net: the computer network (, a small computer/television synthesis corporation that broadcasts a half an hour a week. I know him because a bunch of disgruntled Wired workers (over eight) are employed by c|net, including my friend Jonathan Steuer.

He thinks I could do small Internet tours on television, but he said I would have to be a little bit more "mass." I couldn't figure that out, he equivicated, "Maybe you could do one drug site, but not a whole show." That and sex would have to be toned down for a mass appeal.

but sex and drugs get the highest ratings of all!

Maybe it was the blue hair that threw him off.

Maybe I just don't think like the masses.

What masses?

Thanks for your bandwidth,
see you in a few,

  Justin Hall                              Links from the Underground            

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