Posted by Ted on Jun 5, 2005 in Memories

a few years ago, I was interviewed by a guy who wanted to do a documentary on BBSes. I was one of the earlier interviewees, and so he was still working on his interviewing technique.

my first computer was an Epson QX-10. it ran on CP/M, and was primarily known for its word processing suite called ‘Valdocs’ which was really quite ahead of its time. my dad bought it, and he was one for buying things that sounded good, and maybe even were, but were not popular. I didn’t get an Atari 2600, I got a Bally Astrocade. We got a Betamax instead of a VHS, and we got an Epson QX-10 instead of an IBM PC.

at any rate, it was the mid 80s, and I had just gotten my first 1200 baud modem. yes, I am young enough that I never started with a 300. it was a Prometheus ProModem 1200. and I soon found BBSes. I dialed every one that I could find. I downloaded games, I played Tradewars, and I eventually found Diversi-Dial. I likely wouldn’t be where I am today, if it had not been for the community of friends that I acquired through it. I met my first girlfriend, Karyn, at a 5150 DDial party, held at the home of the SysOp, Brian. I would later meet John Adams (‘jna’ for those who know him as such), and through him Joe Turner, and through Joe to Steer Roast, to Wadlow, to Suspects, to Fandom House, and the rest is history.

I not only dialed BBSes, but when I later upgraded to 2400, I ran one; The Newton Underground. ya, it was a lame name, but I couldn’t come up with anything better. it was mostly a file upload/download site, specializing in those early graphics demos of terminally awake Scandinavians. I would later take advantage of the USRobotics special offer of discounting a $900 14400 HST for $400 as long as you operated a BBS.

soon after, I moved back to Cleveland, graduated high school, went to college, and got on the ‘Net. but I do remember those days of sitting by the computer, for hours, listening to the sounds of the modem dialing, getting busy signals, and redialing, jumping up in excitement when there would be a ring, followed by a tone, followed by static, followed by text moving across the screen.

so yes, the 3 DVD set of the documentary is now available, and yes, I’m on it, albeit very, very briefly. I mostly provide a bit of comedy, but I can live with that. I’ve only watched most of the first disc, but I have to say that Jason actually did a pretty good job with it, and I’m proud to have been a part of it.

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