.comment-link {margin-left:.6em;}

Švejk [shvāke] Svejk

This blog is dedicated to the title character of The Fateful Adventures of the Good Soldier Švejk During the World War and his creator, Jaroslav Hašek.

My Photo
Name:
Location: United States

Friday, May 28, 2004

BIRTHING A BLOG BY DEFAULT - a.k.a. "Gmail made me do it!"

The "Gmail Swap" site posting didn't bring results. I had to act and designed a "gentler, kinder spam" which I sent to 48 prequalified gmail account holders:

"Subject: THE TRANSLATOR OF THE "GOOD SOLDIER SVEJK" IS ASKING YOU TO HELP ...

... by inviting him to Gmail.

I've been working on a new translation of Svejk for 7 years now. I'd like to get a "gmail" account because I have liked the Google algorithm since its beta version. I need a @gmail.com account to help me keep track of all the Svejk related correspondence. (I had lost all e-mails accumulated over several years a couple of years ago. An absolute disaster!) If you can extend an invitation to me to join Gmail, I'd greatly appreciate it. Thanks.

P.S.: Visit the Svejk Central pilot site at www.SvejkCentral.com (Before you leave the site you can read the Challenges of translating Švejk into English: A report on the experimental project of its “Chicago version” at http://svejkcentral.com/The%20Report.html.)"

Two kind people responded and greatly enhanced my communication arsenal by extending an invitation to acquire a beta gmail account. I need one more and I'll be set.:-) Which brings me to the two nasty responses I got from people whose shame shall remain private as I won't post their names and e-mail addresses. Of course by the time the first "not-so-nice, eh?" person replied I already posted my new gmail on the website. He wrote:
"Comrade, you are shameful opportunist. I see you already have @gmail.com account, yes? If you can buy two domain names, you can buy storage space. I hope you offered foolish person who had given you @gmail.com address six-pack of Pilsener Urquell."

I didn't need the gmail account for storage but for the search algorithm. When I was a kid I would have used the standard "don't judge others by your own situation" in response to the first individual. The pinko lingo, the jealousy ... it's so tiresome.

The second attacker wrote:
"You fucking commie. There is no way I will ever give you an account on this brilliant tool of the bourgeoise!"

Perhaps the two guys are on the same campus: one in a cell of the Young Spartacus League, the other in the John Birch Society. Oh well, ignorance is supposed to be bliss. Maybe I'll try it one day. As soon as the lobotomy pills come out.

(The funny thing is that a couple of years ago a customer urged me to start a "Yahoo Group" so the readers of Svejk could talk to one another. The two fine specimen whom I quote above are among the legion of reasons why not run a bulleting board. I used to visit a few bulletin boards now and then, but I don't anymore. The DEVO have taken over. Soliloquy might not be productive from the societal point of view, but at least it's benign.)

A week later I got this message:
"I am out of invites, but I will tell you how to get an account. Go to www.blogger.com and sign up... When you log in, there should be a box on the right side that talks about Gmail. (Don't tell this to people... its a secret, I think)"

Of course I knew it wouldn't work, but ... desperate people do desperate things. I feel almost obligated to hold onto this space for Svejk's sake. Since the work continues (editing to be finished by the end of the year, proofreading and publishing in 2005), I probably won't be posting anything for a long time, if ever. There just isn't any time. However, the pervasive access to the Internet coupled with my lack of habitual jotting down of ideas might prove to be enough of an incentive to try it. I too might become a soliloquist. But then, there are worse things than that. At least I won't be menacing anybody.

P.S.: The Gmail Team is sure earning its money since I got on. Their response is great. I do try reciprocating by providing a value added service:
"I can see it already: There must be millions of people who can't wait to have their Lotus Notes or some such mail service replaced by Gmail! Remember the origin of Coke Classic? (You're probably too young.) I envision noon-time demonstrations in major U.S. cities (at first) during which "knowledge-based workers" will DEMAND that their employers provide them Gmail. (Hey, it might become a Union contract issue. Why don't you give it to the AFGE for beta testing? Uncle Sam could use Gmail to serve the people better, for sure ...) Coming to think of it, I might take to the streets in the Chicago Loop today!"

1 Comments:

Blogger Pacanukeha said...

You need to be an "active" blogger. How they define that probably involves chickens/sacrifices/random dice rolls &c.

12:53 PM  

Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home