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Dear Surfer:

Here's a cool book online: Net Loss: Government, Technology and the Political Economy of Community in the Age of the Internet, my favorite chapter: How the Federal Government Created the Internet, and How the Internet is Threatened by The Government's Withdrawal. How much do you pay to be online right now reading this letter? Betcha never realized you already paid for the internet - in taxes. Great book, long, but a good read.

Here's a heads up for you... ordered something on line from this company --> They sent the wrong thing. Called them on the phone before ordering to make sure it was the right thing. Was assured it was the right thing. It was the wrong thing. Company will only accept a return if I PAY THE SHIPPING AND A 15% restocking fee! After a long conversation, the guy who runs the company said he would make an exception and "only" charge a 10% restocking fee. I told him this was not acceptable, that I would never order from him again and would tell everyone I know never to order from him again. His response, verbatim: "We're willing to sacrifice a few dissatisfied customers." I think ComputerHq are the kamikazes of the DotCom world. Idiots. Feel free to email them with your opinions on this attitude! Be warned about ordering anything from them.

Right, August, blue number nine.... Lots of gigs were scheduled this month. Two weeks before the month began, we only had 2 gigs booked, and then I got all these phone calls, and more gigs were booked. We were supposed to do these outdoor shows put on by the Parks Dept. of NYC every Thursday this month called Rock N' Rollerblade. The first two (2nd & 9th) were cancelled the week of the gig in a confused and unorganized (city employee-like...oops, did i say that?) manner. So the 10th, we had our first gig, our first appearance at the Gaslight Brewery in South Orange. Beers are reasonably priced, there's no cover charge, and there are all kinds of fun games like fussball and this other thing where you shoot a hockey puck down this long air hockey like table thingy... I don't know what the game is called. There was this wild bunch of teachers there that night, all Master's Program students at Seton Hall and all teaching various subjects in different NJ Catholic Schools. As soon as I get the pictures of this group from Greg (thanks for coming, Greg), I'm going to put them up on the site. It was a crazy time. Also, we had a new singer that night with us, Dara Seitzman, a new recruit in the bn9girl army. Sheila drilled her in a 2 day boot camp one week before the gig. She did great! I did have a bit of a crisis that night, though. At the end, we did "I'm In Debt" and I got a piece of glass in my foot ('cause I took off my shoes) and I got scolded by the bartender for telling people we had stickers. Oopsy.

And my other crisis was based on the fact that our two most popular songs of the night were "We Are Family" and "I Will Survive", neither of which we wrote. But then again, I heard comments like, "You guys are a fun band," and it was obvious people liked our stuff, they danced to other songs, too, it's just funny to me that people take so much better to things they already know vs. new things... I guess that's just how people are when it comes to music. People are like this with food, too, I suppose. Rather eat something you already know is good then try something new. Doesn't work for movies... most people don't go out to see a movie they already know they like vs. one they haven't seen yet.

I'm rambling, and I still have one more crisis to tell you about. My sister Sue came with a friend of hers. The guy was really nice - helped us lug our gear, bought our CD, spent lots of money at the bar... but got kicked out because he had gum on his finger, stuck money to the gum and tried to give the sticky tip to the bartender. He was drunk and had a really thick Puerto Rican accent, so between that and the gum, I guess they didn't like him too much. I felt really bad because they came all the way from the Bronx to see us and were only as drunk as everyone else, but the damn gum... geez, if only the guy had kept the gum in his mouth! He couldn't keep mints in his mouth either. He was talking to me at one point, and the mint flew out of his month and landed on my forearm. He didn't do it on purpose... hey, maybe he didn't do the gum thing on purpose either! Well, who knows.

Finally, there was this guy Eric who helped us lug our gear out!! Thank you Eric, if you're reading this, and thank you George, our bandmate, for doing the right thing and doing the gig despite a major bout with food poisoning. Thanks to Lauren and Greg for going around with the tip jar. It's a good thing you guys did that and I'll tell you why, but call me on the phone to discuss it! Also, thanks Bob Connor for coming out! Bob didn't bring his camera that night, which left him the freedom to dance his little butt off.

On the 16th, we were supposed to play down in Long Branch NJ at this place called Hooligan's. I was looking forward to it, but it got cancelled the day of the gig because the club had electrical problems. Oh well. Life goes on.... we have to reschedule.

Then, on the 20th, no one had yet called me from the Parks Dept. about the next two Rock N' Rollerblade gigs, the 23rd & the 30th. They did finally email me back to tell me (3 days before the gig) that they "could not accomodate" us.... huh? They should have just said, "On second thought, we don't need you to come and play for free for us." Whatever! I wrote back a very professional screw you email, in which I pointed out that I would inform the other six members of the band of this third and final last minute cancellation so that they could un-rearrange their schedules because we were not doing these gigs.

On Friday the 24th, Sheila, Camari, Marco, Jack & I at 11 in the morning, were interviewed by a reporter doing a freelance article for the Jersey Journal, specifically in regards to our participation in the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's "Light the Night" walks coming up in September, which I again encourage you to support. I really don't like being interviewed and think if I were ever famous, I'd freak out or something. I always think of what I really wanted to say after the fact. I wish I could just write stuff about us myself and publish it. I guess that what I do with this website, but it's not the same as a newspaper article. Sheila was very eloquent, as was Jack. Camari & Marco, too. Everyone had good stuff to say. So if you see the article, could you let me know? I just don't feel like calling the paper every week to find out if it ran! Thank you!

The 26th we were scheduled to play the Madison Daytop Festival. This forecast said RAIN.. This has been one rainy month! But fortunately, it was a beautiful day and we had a great time! We had a new singer, Greg Eichelzer, with us... first time we ever had a guy back up vocalist. He was amazing. Another recruit in the bn9singer army (I guess I shouldn't call it "girl" army, 'cause Greg's no girl).

Rewind to August 9th - Marco and I went to see Alieron. You should check them out. Joel, who plays percussion with us is in the band and they are awesome. Great vocal harmonies, fabulous irreverant on stage banter, and a cool website.

So our last gig this crazy month was a last minute booking at the Triumph Brewery in Princeton. I've been trying to book us at this place for 3 years, and finally succeeded. I sent them our kit last month, followed up with a call and was told they're booked until 2002... but then got a call a few weeks later that someone cancelled and could we play the 31st! Minoru was in California, so we did it with just keys. It was more mellow than usual, but GREAT! They are so organized at this place, it was a pleasure to play there. Thanks to all our So. Jersey fans for coming out to support! We look forward to returning.

As I said above, in July, we had only 2 gigs booked for August. By July 25th, we had 8 gigs booked for August. Ended up playing 3 gigs.

Now, here's my big beef this month: When people take advantage of other people's kindness and good name. Ever have someone use your name to get what they want, but then when things aren't working for them, they behave like a jerk with your contacts? Here's a better idea for people who do that: Maybe you shouldn't turn around and abuse that contact of your "friend's". This has happened to me, you see, and I am not anyone special, just a person who cherishes friendships and good relationships, and if you're going to be a dick with my friends, don't make me clean up the mess! I won't do it, and you know what? It's bad, bad karma. That is all.



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Letters from the past:

July, 2001
June, 2001
May, 2001
April, 2001
March, 2001
February, 2001
January, 2001
December, 2000
November, 2000
October, 2000
September, 2000
August, 2000 (from Marco)
July, 2000
June, 2000
May, 2000
April, 2000
March, 2000
February, 2000
January, 2000
December, 1999
November, 1999
October, 1999
September, 1999
August, 1999
July, 1999
June, 1999
May, 1999
April, 1999
March, 1999
February, 1999
January, 1999