Thursday, February 20, 2014

...Then Stardust

An Owl Morpho found on the Kauffman Garden blog.

Above is a photo of an Owl Morpho, an exotic moth-like butterfly found at Kauffman Garden. That is, the same Kauffman Memorial Garden where Mac's ashes were scattered to the winds four years ago. I suppose if one has to have a final resting place, Kauffman Gardens would be an excellent choice - prime real estate, for sure - but then, I imagine human ashes only rest for awhile... before spiraling off into space, the home of their ancestors.

Kind of like the stones which were intended to guide you here, to Post-Mac Blues' official new home.

Which didn't happen.

PMB hasn't budged, and, as of this writing, is unlikely to. Not only is too much entailed, but it appears there are, to my knowledge, two mirror "araqinta" blogs that (seemingly) appeared overnight. Each has "araqinta" in the URL, but they originate from different countries.*

About those stones... my latest graphic image (and parting shot) "Stones in Space" (below), was inspired by an old Jewish custom of leaving "visitation stones" at the burial sites of those who were once cherished in life. As per usual, I just ran with it, re-envisoning the strange corrugated fragment floating in the background image of this blog as a type of cyberspace monument... and the perfect place for a collection of visitation and/or "memory" stones (Note: not to be confused with the "smarter" variety, and/or robot pebbles Mac may have preferred!) When I started imagining them spiraling off into the stars, however, the metaphor for moving this blog didn't even occur to me. Incidentally, the image (below the jump) was to appear on the redirection page. Well, it was a nice idea anyway.

Stones in Space (another view) - digital - 2014 DS
(click for full-size)

But then, that's generally the way I roll... in fits and starts, wholly spontaneously, and almost always a little awry. Four years and 300 posts ago, upon unexpectedly losing a friend, I had the knee-jerk reaction of creating a blog for him. A small memorial blog, you understand... a few links, a few posts, a few images, etc. Just something to deal with that great overwhelming void that Death inevitably unfolds. Too bad the "void" was the size of the Grand Canyon. But then, how does one frame this story: the one about a young man who one night, after writing a Tweet and an email or two, uploading a song to Blip.FM, maybe carefully straightening his book manuscript on his desk - and, (at least this is what I imagine) playing laser-tag with his two cats - goes to bed, and then... vanishes. No good-byes... no forwarding address... nothing. Kind of like a really bad episode of "Without a Trace"... punctuated by this... found in the comment section of Posthuman Blues days after his actual demise:

Anonymous said...
Mac Tonnies passed away earlier in the week. Our condolences are with his family and friends in this time of grief.
6:51 PM

Post-Mac Blues was launched approximately two weeks later, on Halloween. I'd never blogged before... didn't do "social media" or "networking" of any kind. (When some genius comes up with "anti-social media", I'll be first in line...) But, in my own addled mind, I figured Samhain was surely the day to leap into the fold.

And, yet, I've been asking myself ever since: why am I doing this? (Because, if you're like me you can't even take your own agenda at face value.) But, really, it's quit clear. My "Stones in Space" informed me. I was creating - and have created - a virtual monument to Mac... a monument without walls, without perimeters (and without "funding" or crowd-sourcing of any kind). Would he like it? This I can't say... but, I know that, even if he didn't, he would never be so crass as to admit it. Mac was one of the last great gentlemen. Even if he hated it, he'd appreciate the effort. And, I'm fine with that.

Besides which, and whether one realizes it or not, Post-Mac Blues was one of the first blogs of its kind. We, that is, Mac, Mac's friends, and this memorial, even made the New York Times magazine - the cover story, no less - thanks to Rob Walker. So, in that sense, Post-Mac Blues is a historical document. Dig on that. I never anticipated this back in 2009, and its import never occurred to me till recently.

Stones in Space - detail - 2014 DS

But, In the last analysis, this blog is as much a celebration of Mac Tonnies and all things Mac, as it is a memorial. As of this date, and to this end, the sidebar of the memorial has been entirely restructured - as well as the many posts which suffered after Blogger changed settings - with a number of newly added links and new "rooms"... and more portals to designated posthuman areas to contemplate. I hope you like the final results.

As the caretaker, and groundskeeper, you can be sure I'll be keeping the "sucker-vines of spam" at bay, but, I can't do much more. The vitality (and visibility) of this memorial is now in your hands.

A special thanks goes out to all of those who have supported this memorial; especially Mac's parents, who have been as tolerant and trusting as any two people can be. And, also, to Mark Plattner (who single-handedly archived the whole of Posthuman Blues) and Paul Kimball (who single-handedly brought PHB to print); and, lastly, to all the podcasters, Twitterers, and bloggers, who have made a dedicated effort to keeping Mac's legacy and memory alive.

Adieu - and my best to you - till some future date.

* Later note: Apparently, these creations enable country-specific censoring of blog content.


  1. Thanks, For the beautiful tribute.

  2. Hi, Dia---

    I was just perusing Mac's blog, reading a post about Roswell, when I saw your graphic for the cover of his last book, "The Cryptoterrestrials," in the side bar there.

    Sorry to hear this blog is going into archival or hiatus mode. This is the first time I've checked it in a couple years, I think, and just as I come over to check it out, it becomes "frozen stardust." Ah, well -- I'm sure there's plenty here to review from the past that I'll be able to catch up on.

    I'll send you an email about something I'm interested in shortly.

    Love your artistry and CGI graphics. If I ever write a book on the UFO phenomenon, I'll definitely want to see if you might be interested in doing a cover.

    BTW, I did the copy edit on Mac's last book for Anomalist Books, and was under various pseuds on Mac's blog starting around 2007, like Intense, Wintermute, Dr. X, etc., just for reference/reminder.

    And yes, I too still miss Mac. He was such a bright, shining intelligence.

    May he rest in peace, among the stars.


    1. Mac had a restless mind, and, while I can't say for sure what's become of it - the true definition of "mind" is still up for grabs - my guess is that it's still causing memetic mischief in some fashion; which is comforting.

      Two years, eh? Well, yeah, then there's plenty of added density to the memorial for you to investigate.

      Best of luck with your plans. As for mine, well, I currently have a "bucket list" of unfinished projects to conjure with... most of which Mac was aware of years ago. And, then, there's those niggling little meatspace matters to contend with... such as paying the rent.

      In other words, Mac's okay, but I wonder about the rest of the denizens in this strange world.

      Thanks for dropping a line.


      PS I just looked up the word "denizen" in the dictionary, to make sure it was the correct term. Oddly enough it originates from the Latin "de intus", meaning: "from within."