Conversations with Lost Friends
Brian Richard Boylan

Re: PC & the Internet - Sun, 25 Aug 1996
FROM Brian

Your faxes arrived this afternoon--they're just what the pastor ordered! I'm expecting to fax them to Montreal, starting tomorrow, and we'll see which ones Keith Tomasek picks.

Thanks also for the eloquent message from [name deleted] (aka [screenname deleted]). I was particularly fetched with her expletive, "Gosh darn it!!). What ever happened to god damn it? That used to appear all the time in the newspapers ("This is a FAMILY newspaper," thunders the sanctimonious Star-Trombone, despite their failure to indicate that anyone under 30 even looks at it beyond the un-funny pages and the jockstrap nuz).

Contemplating this has given rise to the faint possibility that PC can be traced to women who insist that everyone use a gender-free language and the professors who want to impress these women, either professionally or for the purposes of getting into their pants. Thus, they have imposed a tyranny on the campuses which has spread to the quasi-intellectual world, and from there to the moronic media. Any thoughts? It by no means is any sort of firm theory, but an amusing possibility to question.

Re: relationships - Mon, 26 Aug 1996
FROM Brian

Matt starts out with a bang, but then Dave Barry takes over with his customary, generic guy bashing. Maybe I am from another planet, but when with a woman I care about, that relationship is the most important thought in my mind. Hell, I flew down to Argentina to meet Mengele and the Nazis, with my mind totally preoccupied with the woman I was in love with who, it had become increasingly clear during the week we spent together in New York, was getting edgy and wanting to return to normal. Also, the words relationship, committment, and other current buzz words mean nothing to me.

Re: hope springs eternal - Tue, 27 Aug 1996
FROM Brian

What the hell is RCW? And why do all these (presumably) horny ladies write coments such as "hehehehehehehehehe" and "heh,heh"? This love affair that springs up with anyone remotely connected with Our Secret Show (cancelled & buried) are so gushy and purple. I don't object or even pass judgement on any of this, but they seem to enjoy making fools of themselves in public? Nothing new about that; men do it everyday and baseball, football, and basketball games, strutting, thumping their chests, and waggling their index fingers to indicate that they are Number One--I presume, horse's asses.

However, I do still enjoy whizzinbg through these delights, and thank you for bringing a touch of comic relief to otherwise dreadful days.

Yours in Christ,


Re: retooling shows - Fri, 30 Aug 1996
FROM Brian

Aren't her comments akin to floggin a dead metaphor. CBS made up its mind and cancelled DS. No other network has seen fit to pick it up, despite the enormous clamoring on the internet.

The brilliant piece you wrote about FK (that I'm still trying to sell!) seemed to indicate that FK followers pursued the networks and production companies directly over the internet even before the show was officially cancelled. The DS faithful seem content to weep, wail, and rail to one another, instead of trying to get a different network to pick it up. Why this discrepancy? Lack of unified leadership or someone to issue marching orders, along with behaving like a pack of soap opera die-hards mourning a replaced favorite actor.

The DS stuff does sound whinyer and more bitter than the FK fighters.



PS: thre tapes came today. Than you many times over again!!

Re: how to tie your wallet to your underwear - Tue, 3 Sep 1996
FROM Brian

It sounds like there's an epidemic of lust-filled, Mountie-mad maidens out there who are turning the DS wire into a not-so-flaccid porn page. God bless 'em & keep them coming. Perhaps they should be known as Auntie Mounties or Mounty Margarets? It's time to mount up by climbing back into the saddle again.



Re: DS [Due South] - Fri, 6 Sep 1996
FROM Brian


I have discovered the Final Solution to the DS whiners, sobbers, horny panters, and virtually all the sorority those erotic throbbings make the internet jump orgasmically:

YOU, who probably has the hugest collection of anyone on the internet, should round up all the letters, reports, articles, testimonial, and naked declarations of lust, and PASS THEM ON TO PAUL GROSS! Forget about those ozone heads at CBC and CBS who don't recognize the enormous erotic appeal of this show (no joking here!), but sock it to Adonis himself. And ask for a commentary back to you.

Paul might decide that it'sd time to forget his personal life and move on to acting as a sex symbol for all these women (and men--not many comments from gays, I notice. hmmmm...). Or then again, he might be willing to sacrifixw his image (especially now that he wants to write more), and suggest a vist to the nearest sex-toy shoppe for his own brand of autographed, eblazoned vibrators or dildos, complete with hat on the end.

Departing from the realm of fantasy of the DS watchers, I have some interesting news. Your two synopses went out to Keith Tomasek today, while different flightd took off with a priority package for you, which includes a number of photos. There is one in an envelope asking if an old picture can be cleaned up via computer. Should you agree to scan these, the next question is whether to put them on a photo CD disk or just pipe them down to Photois, Inc, to make negatives or prints.

When you finally have seen enough, why don't you call me with specific questions to which I can address specific responses?

Meanwhile, I tried out your summary of some producers who will take pitches over the phone, and they all agreed to consider your scripts. This marks the end of an incredible day for me (seven major projects resolved or sent for disposition), the second such day in a row, which is equivalent to one of those four day spans a month or two ago.

Melissa is turning out to be a golden find. She is prompt and precise, stating her opinion unequivocally, but in such a way that it can be spurned.

I'm giving her an increased work load, and she doesn't even flutter an eyelid. I presume you are up to date on everything going between Minneapolis and Fargo, and I's appreciate any running commentary, as you see it.

Christ, I'm falling asleep at the computer and it's only 8:40 pm our time. I'll get back to you, or better yet, call you over the weekend.

Love and chocolate,


If only... - Sun, 8 Sep 1996
FROM Brian

If only...

	CBS gave us a better break
	CBS burned with the passion of PBS
	The world were a nicer place
	Not so many doozies used HECK instead of HELL
	People could react to TV shows themselves, without prodding
	Fan clubs were outlawed
	Fandom's brilliant repartee could be printed in a book
	The burning rage could be directed at producers, 
                 instead of being posted for doozies only to see
	They would only shut up until the next programming crisis hits
	They had some prayer of how to spend their free time
	They didn't wallow in such whining mediocrity...
                 the world  might be a happier place.

Just a thought. No particular venom this evening. Christ, I'm used to 5-15 messages awaiting me every morning (most of them from you). Walking around in a perpetual state of exhaustion is no fun, either. You should have the photos Monday or Tuesday.


Re: If only... - Sun, 8 Sep 1996
FROM Brian

>>>I wondered if you were still up. Just got in from dinner. Miss you.>>>

I too just got home from a draining afternoon of playing with the Better Than Nothing Dirt Band at a farewell party for someone I barely know.



Re: Video art - Wed, 11 Sep 1996
FROM Brian

My god, woman. Your video scanning is breathtaking. The giraffe is superb. The one of my mother--taken approximately 90 years ago, could probably use a slight touch of cleaning in the face. What do you think about the background? Perhaps a tint would soften the stairs.

As far as Greg with the pup, you did a magnificent job. Since those are dark green bushes behind him, do you think that would help?



Miscellaneous startling thoughts - Sat, 14 Sep 1996
FROM Brian

While breezing through your message trash bin, I noticed a reference to "The Masochism Tango" as something you want. I have it on CD and can dub it directly onto SP tape. I have most of Tom Lehrer's stuff, along with Stan Freberg's "Green Christmas" and "The United States of America" parts one AND the just-released part two. The words are worth liatening to, and I'm happy to dub them onto one hour videotape. The same applies to all of Peter Schickele's PDQ Bach recordings.

I probably have never mentioned this, but I have a huge collection of CDs--mostly classical and opera, with some Irish and Russian music. My LP collection is even vaster--and more catholic, since I have inherited a few collections from deceased friends.

Next time you call, ask me about it, and I can tell you exactly what I have, record anything you want (how about some Gilbert & Sullivan?) and pop them into the mail to you in short order. Probably my favorite export the past several months has been Jussi Bjoerling singing "Cantique de Noel--Oh Holy Night" in Swedish with full orchestra and chorus...the week before his death at age 49. It's very stirring. Also there is a lot of theatter music, from Bernstein to "Man of La Mancha" with Placido Domingo, Mandy Patinkin, and Sam Ramey; all the Mozart symphonies, several volumes of early-instrument Mozart symphonies, all of Dvorak--you name it and if I don't have it I can usually find it.

Chimes and pan flutes,


Re: Gettysburg Obsession - Thu, 02 Jul 1998
FROM Brian

Gottcha! I too am obsessed over those three days (the second of which took place 135 years ago today) and don't know if it will end. Like you, I've read everything I can get my hands on...and have found that the books about Gettysburg are legion but not all of equal value.

Regarding the book you are reading, any Confederate viewpoint of that battle written much before 1985 is going to preach the "Lost Cause" Doctrine---part of which is to blame Longstreet entirely for Gettysburg. Even before I read two recent books that exploded that view as twaddle, it always amazed me that Longstreet should take the rap for urging Lee to change his battle plan by cutting behind the Union troops and forcing the Yanks to attack them.

However, in 1987 I read Lee's Tarnished Lieutenant by William Garrett Piston (University of Georgia Press, 1987) and finally found some relief from the grotesque copycat syndrome still prevalent among academic historians. This delightful book is short, to the point, points out the flaws in that argument, and quotes Lee on Longstreet after the battle and after the war. a more recent book, General James Longstreet, by Jeffrey D Wert (Simon & Schuster, 1994), offers more evidence of Longstreet's military brilliance and his attempts to carry out Lee's orders today. He was told to storm the Federal heights at Little Round Top, and damned near succeeded in taking it. I often wonder (and search through footnotes, letters, etc.) just how many participants at Gettysburg formed long friendships with their opposites after the war. For example, did Longstreet ever meet Chamberlain? He and Hancock were old class pals at West Point, as were most of the top generals.

Let me urge you to read Battle Cry of Freedom by James McPherson (Oxford, 1988) as the premier one-volume history of the Civil War. This book really got me cranked up on the subject. It's out in a trade paperback version.

Where oh where did you find Longstreet's memoirs on line??? Have you found any other useful urls for this battle? I've got two copies of Longstreet's memoirs (From Manasses to Appomattox here, one being annotated. But I'd love to jump into them on line. How did you find them? National Archives? Library of Congress? Papers of___??? Please enlighten (and earn undying gratitude from an ardent, albeit distant admirer).

It sounds like you're really getting caught by the historical mania, so we probably should spend some time on the phone soon and see if there is anything we can pass on to one another. I've got books and books about the battle, most of them collections of professorial essays which are all but useless.

Speaking of the Michael Shaara novel that inspired the movie, have you read his son Jeff's Prequel, Gods and Generals (Ballantine, 1996) and, just out, The Last Full Measure (Ballantine, just released this month)? The first followed a handful of men from 1857 until the eve of Gettysburg. The second book, which I have just started and hope to gobble down swiftly in order to review it, covers the aftermath of Gettysburg to the end of the Civil War. He writes very much like his father did....they both caught me a few times when I thought I was reading non-fiction, but wondering how they knew what Chamberlain or Longstreet were thinking.

I'm going to slip two book reviews I wrote on the subject into the mail box, unless you tell me that your fax is receptive.

Welcome to the Krazy Klub!!



PS: Don't knock "Deep Impact"--it was written by the brother of a client of ours who is an excellent writer.

Mary Van Deusen wrote:
Having returned from Gettysburg, I'm still obsessed by the topic. I'm collecting quite a library and am in the midst of reading the Confederate Army at Gettysburg, first copyrighted in 1956. This is a VERY pro Lee, anti Longstreet point of view that says that Longstreet was jealous of Lee's relationship with Jackson and assumed that with Jackson's death he would become

Lee's strategizing partner. It has him delaying his attack out of sulkiness rather than principle.

By the way, the entire memoirs of Longstreet are online.

Have you investigated these points of view enough to have some clarifying thoughts for me?

I also found the battle maps used in the West Point military history class. And I used to say that Paul studied his way to China. I've read the book you sent, listened to the short book tape, the long book tape and have watched the movie more times than you want to imagine. I can almost recite it. Well, better this than Deep Impact.

Hoping you're well and enjoying your humorous postings.


GETTYSBURG - Sun, 23 Aug 1998
FROM Brian

Hi Mary, I've been worrying about your Gettysburg obsession. I'm afraid it's incurable. I still cannot stay away for very long without the tremor setting in and the spine turning to mush.

I presume you've read Michael Shaara's The Killer Angels. His son, Jeff, wrote a not-so-hot prequel, but last night I finished Jeff's account from Gettysburg to Appomattox in The Last Full Measure, a stunning book. I think you might enjoy it.

How are your other projects coming along? It just occurred to me that your project might have great appeal for the slow down time thought for-a-day calendars that are just coming out now.

Take care and don't forget your prayer.


Seeking your permission - Fri, 07 May 1999
FROM Brian

Hi Mary!

A few weeks ago, I started working with the delightful people who put out Today in History as a subscription list. I think I sent you the first notice of my participation when it appeared on April 12.

The interest in the history page and its offshoot, Spotlight on History, seems to have given the list a hefty shot of growth hormone.

When they asked me for a biographical summary, I referred them to the best one I've ever seen on the internet, the one written by you. The people at Today in History would like to lift parts of that page and run it under my name. Naturally, your original credit, InterMedia Enterprises, will be run.

May we have this permission?

Thanks so much,


PS: Have you considered the possibility of an original book about your unique family? I think your research has been impeccable and your doggedness inspired. Let's talk about getting you into print soon! Love you, Brian

Memories of Brian


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