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From: "Dan'l Danehy-Oakes" 
Subject: (urth) For Josh: Apology for (apparent) Unintended Offence
Date: Mon, 28 Jul 2003 09:50:01 -0700

> > While I would very much like to be a part of something like this, and in
> > fact live in the right part of the world - the east bay to be 
> > --  in fact, my beloved Spousal Overunit went to hiskul in East San
> > Jose - I do not believe it likely to happen.
>For your information, I live in a three bedroom house with a big yard
>and garden in a very nice, very middle class, very quiet neighborhood.
>There are rough neighborhoods in East San Jose,  some of them not too
>far away. Mine, however, is very quiet and peaceful.


I'm not sure what, in the above-quoted passage, gave you to think
that I was putting down either yourself or East San Jose, but whatever
it was, I apologize, in front of the same group before which I apparently
offended you. I intended nothing of the sort.

H'mmm. Parsing carefully.

"right part of the world" -- meaning not too far from your proposed
location. If you took the word "right" as implying that I regard the
East Bay as somehow superior to East SJ, well, all I can say to that is,
the East Bay has Milpitas; how can it be suprior to anything?

"my beloved Spousal Overunit went to hiskul in East San Jose" -- if
you read that as meaning "Some of my best friends ...", well, no,
that _wasn't_ what I meant; what I meant is that I'd spent a fairly
significant amount of time in East SJ myself, visiting my inlaws (before
they moved out-of-state). We still go down there occasionally to do
random bits of maintenance on the house my beloved SO grew up
in, which is -- incidentally -- a three-bedroom house with a small yard,
but with a swimming pool, in a very nice, very quiet, very middle class

(If you took offense at my misspelling of "high school," well I won't
apologize for that, but it had nothing to do with East San Jose, it
had to do with my experiences with the California public school
system in the 1970s.)

Nor does my dubiousness that such a thing is likely to happen have
anything to do with the location, other than it being quite a long ways
away from Chicagoland. I know for a fact that Wolfe has attended at
least two conventions in San Jose.

>I am sorry. There really is no polite way to say 'fuck you, white boy'.

There probably is, but that isn't one of them.

Nonetheless, I have to say that nothing I've said in this conversation up
to the last paragraph has anything to do with "race." I don't think the
concept of "race" is particularly useful or meaningful, except as a way of
dividing people up and setting them at each others' throats so that the
two-headed one-party system in this country can stay in power.

Based on your comment, I presume that you are not a "white boy."
This is the first inkling I had that it might be so -- if pressed to guess,
based on your name I would have supposed you to be Jewish -- nor
would I have given a rat's backside if I had known. All I knew -- and
all I know _now_ really -- was that the person posting under that name
was an intelligent person with an interesting email persona, and a lot
of knowledge about esoteric subjects, some of which I also know
something about, others of which I would like to know something
about, and a few of which just sort of go right past me (like I said about

Given that, it's interesting to me that you assumed me to be white.
Probably a safe assumption, based on my own persona. And yu're right,
I am in fact of Euro descent, and don't even have the decency to be
ashamed of it. Nor am I excessively proud of it; nothing my ancestors
did is any credit or blame to me, though I suppose that, as a white
American, I can take a little comfort in knowing that none of them came
to this country any earlier than the 1880's, and thus they not only
cannot have owned slaves, but are also extremely unlikely to have taken
part in any of the major slaughters of this continent's prior inhabitants.
Despite my British-Irish name, my ancestry is overwhelmingly Eastern
European, mostly Slavs and Ashkenazim, with a bit of Brit on my father's
side. The Irish part of the name comes from the Spousal Overunit.

>I am ashamed.

I'm sorry. I don't know what you have to be ashamed of, but if my
writing gave you something to be ashamed of, I apologize.

> > My expectation is that, confronted with the suggestion of such a thing, 
> > Wolfe is likely to regard it as the concoction of a gaggle of
> > hero-worshippin fanboys (and -girls),
>Thank you for your encouragement and support.

The phrase I would use is "realism tinged with pessimism." One thing writers
and artists express over and over again is a fear of fans who want more of
them than their work, who want a piece of _them_. Approaching Wolfe with
a proposal of this sort would, I think, need to be done in a way that would
overcome a great deal of natural suspicion that this was precisely what was
going on here -- and "We will listen to whatever _you_ want to talk about"
seems likely to arouse suspicion that this is precisely that sort of fans.

_I_ know it isn't. But to convince _him_ that it isn't, is going to require
something -- either an approach from someone he knows and trusts, or
else an extremely _professional_ approach. Something to convince him that
this is in fact worthwhile -- not merely in terms of money, but in terms of
the disruption it will necessarily entail to his work schedule, his home 
etc.; how is this better from _his_ point of view than the several days' 
it will take away from working on his current novel?

>In either case you will have the same chance as everybody else to

Thank you.


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