From: WWS <email@example.com> Subject: Re: Sad news: A fellow poster has passed away Date: 04 Nov 1999 00:00:00 GMT Message-ID: <3821C595.E38FDFA3@tyler.net> Organization: yeh, right. Newsgroups: rec.arts.tv,alt.tv.buffy-v-slayer,alt.fan.tom-servo,rec.arts.sf.tv "Gary J. Weiner" wrote: > > WWS wrote: > > > > "Gary J. Weiner" wrote: > > > > > > > > > I guess Cronan has achieved ultimate troll status, God put him in his > > > killfile. > > > > > > Aw, damn... > > > > You never know, God may just be making him a sysop. > > Does this mean we'll be seeing him on a future episode of "Touched > by an Angel"? I don't think he would be nearly as patient with foolishness or venality as anyone on TBA. When he gets there, it's gonna be lightning bolt time, as as he would have said, he'd be fixin' to open the biggest can of whoop-ass you ever saw! I'm remembering the times I used to log onto undernet chat sessions with him. He would be the same Cronan, even more so sometimes! One of the things he loved best was to get channel op status, and then de-op everyone else before they noticed what he was up to. After that, he delighted in "kicking" anyone who didn't stay up with the conversation or wasn't participating. Or sometimes just to stir the pot if things got too dull. Chats with him were entertaining, aggravating, mind boggling - but never dull! One of the things he loved outside sci-fi was Jackie Chan movies - but he recognized that the primary goal of any type of entertainment (which is just another name for interesting communication) is to keep your audience on it's toes all the time, always wondering what was going to come next, always actively engaged in trying to figure out where things are going. The content was important, but the pace was just as important, and a fast pace can overcome and sometimes even substitute for a completely cohesive plot - of course, it's best if they go together. He had an intuitive understanding of what was going to succeed or not that was phenomenal - I remember when he saw "Matrix" the first day and told me that it was going to be a smash, not because it didn't have flaws (it had a lot) but because the flow and the pace was so good. That's why I know that he was going to be a rising star if he'd ever had the time - he had an insight into the process of fame/notoriety that was more developed than most writers who have worked in the industry for years. He knew that you don't have to be deep, or correct, or even cohesive all the time - but you do have to know how to interest and tickle imaginations enough so that they always want to come back for more. And the only really unforgiveable offense is to bore your audience - they'll forgive you for anything except for that. Also, he knew that especially on Usenet, people want to feel *smart* when they respond, so when he started a thread, he would deliberately leave errors and holes in it so that the readers could feel they were "smarter" than him, and would jump all over it - lots of times, he would have a thread planned out in his head 4 or 5 levels down before he ever made the first post. He told me once that I tried too hard to get everything right at times - that if I ever *did* get everything right in a post, that was the kiss of death and the guarantee that no one would respond - no one wants to say "me too", and it's hard to show off unless you can correct someone else's mistakes. (he analyzed d.t.'s success for me quite accurately in that light, I hadn't understood till he showed me what made it work) Those themes were what he was working out in his mind while he was posting here - that's why he never worried about someone getting offended at something he said, he saw correctly that a large part of the audience on usenet *Wants* something to be offended at, it gives them a chance to respond and to become part of the ongoing conversation. He crafted his threads consciously to play to that need, and it worked almost every time. He found playing Villain a lot more entertaining than playing Hero, but knew that any entertaining story has to have *both* if anyone is going to get involved or care about it - furthermore, the best stories of all are not usually defined by how good the hero is, but by how clever and tricky the Villain is. And people love that kind of thing, always have. I didn't understand the Usenet till he taught me what made it work. He saw through the surface and into what made things tick better than anyone else I've ever seen here. -- __________________________________________________WWS_____________ I am the very model of a usenet personality, Thanks largely to my knowledge of internet scatology, I've had insights both logical and factual On matters esoteric, idiotic and nonsensical; I'm relatively knowledgable on subjects philosophical, (I understand the subtext in relationships sapphostical) While well acquainted with matters transcendental I am the only man who is truly plain and simple. - Cronan Thompson
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