Dear Uptight:How come you answer everyone else's questions, but ignore the ones from Seattle Weekly staff?Weekly Wired
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Dear Wired,I can sympathize. I've been completely unable to get a response from Maggie Savarino. Even after I took an afternoon to compose some thoughts on my personal drink specialty, butterscotch schnapps on the rocks with a mint-tea chaser. Yes, I know that sounds confusing. But I think happy hour should be a little bit confusing. Because happiness itself is often confusing. That's why we tend to question it, instead of simply enjoying it. We wonder if we're happy for the right reasons, and worry about how long it's going to last. Thus my confusing happy hour, designed to help people accept without question larger happinesses that may arrive for no discernible reason.Anyway, that's the gist of what I wrote to Ms. Savarino. Never heard back. Sent a few follow-up notes. Nothing. In my last e-pistle I probably went over the line in suggesting she change the name of her "Ask the Bartender" column to "Give Up On Getting Any Service From the Bartender." So I apologize for my tone there. But the real problem is that there seems to be a pattern of behavior at work. Jonathan Kauffman has failed to respond to the white paper I sent him containing my findings with regard to Asian cuisines. I was hoping he would see it as a collegial correction of some of his rougher generalizations about Korean soup bases, but I guess he took it as a threat. Or something.It really doesn't matter. I bring any of this up only by way of explaining that a pattern is exactly what there isn't in my case. Every letter sent by every Weekly staff member has just happened to be unsuitable for the column. In order to benefit the maximum number of readers, I have to focus on only the most common situations.Dear Uptight Seattleite,I posted the IP address to my proxy server on a bulletin board that was put up to help Iranians use the Internet without detection, and people soon picked up on it. For the first couple of weeks, it was going well. There was lots of Iranian traffic checking the news and Facebook and Twitter and all that crap, and I felt like I was doing something positive. Well, that was then, because now my proxy is an unmitigated canal of 100% smut.It's ungodly. I check the logs and it's a nonstop flow of genitalia-based urls of every description. At first I was amused, but now I'm depressed. I'm not depressed because of the porn in and of itself. I'm depressed at the utter lack of imagination of people, admittedly mostly men in this case. Can't somebody use this great free tool for something more interesting—like secret wire transfers or espionage or searching the classifieds for a sailboat to sail around the world and away from your mundane cubicle at your mundane job? Sadly, the answer seems to be no.Dempsey
Dear Dempsey,I love how you've linked political unrest in Iran with the mundane world of the North American cube dweller. In both cases, you suggest, imagination is the spark and personal transformation is the gas main. All power to the imagination, isn't that what they used to say? I know it plays a big part in my own life. Just last night I was imagining that the light cast on the bedroom ceiling by a street light looked like the elongated cover of a magazine. The Nightly Glow. And sometimes when I'm walking between the shadows of two telephone wires, I imagine they're railroad tracks and I'm a train. A slow and steady ol' steam engine, just a-movin' on down the sidewalk. Choo!Imagination also means picturing where you'll be in the future. One of the places I'll be later this summer, for example, is at the George Winston concert. The 16th row of Benaroya, baby! I wonder how long he'll keep us waiting before he drops "Autumn" into his set. Not that I don't also enjoy his newer material. George is a craftsman and a showman. And that's what makes his absence from the Bumbershoot lineup all the more puzzling. He'll be here that same weekend, but apparently there's no space for him on the Rockstar Energy Drink Stage. I guess they had to make room for, let's see...3 Inches of Blood, Iglu & Hartly, and Sick Puppy. Now, anyone who knows me will tell you I'm all for "edginess," but can't we also make space for softly noodling rumination? I hope someone at One Reel will hear my pleas. And that, Dempsey, brings up something that you might want to think about: Sometimes imagination can mean simply listening to each other.Dear Uptight Seattleite,Can you italicize a period?Emphasizing Ernestine
Dear Ernestine,I can't. But I'm not saying you can't. Only you can limit you.Wanna be BUFFs? Find the Uptight on Facebook! Or write to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.