sometime in 1999 January 23, 2006 6:10 AM   Subscribe

What happened pre January 28, 2000 that caused all earlier members than 278 to have joined 'sometime in 1999' v 279 (both absolutely useless, by the way) - the MetaTalk archives started March 3, 2000 so there is no obvious record of what happened.
posted by tellurian to MetaFilter-Related at 6:10 AM (19 comments total)

Explained here:
I only started keeping track of when people signed up on January 27, 2000, the earlier ones I changed to "sometime in 1999" for others and "since day one" for me.
posted by smackfu at 6:15 AM on January 23, 2006

I'm getting out more. (As opposed to the 'Your comments' message if you haven't posted in a while 'You need more Metafilter in your life'). Are you coming smackfu?
posted by tellurian at 6:28 AM on January 23, 2006

The official cover story is that mathowie didn't track this information until 2000. The truth, however, is far more sinister.
posted by nixerman at 7:36 AM on January 23, 2006

Metafilter: Must-See HTTP

posted by mds35 at 7:53 AM on January 23, 2006

I think it's interesting* that you formulated it as "what happened to effect these older dates" rather than "what hadn't happened yet."

One of these days, someone needs to sit down and write up the history of Mefi. Biography, or maybe memoirs. "A Million Little Jruns." It'll be big on the Oprah forums.

*interesting, in this case, really just means interesting. Not "telling", not "politically compromising", not "a stunning indictment of the backwardsness of your worldview."**

**And that's not satire. I really am being earnest. I think it's kinda interesting.

posted by cortex at 8:01 AM on January 23, 2006

The official cover story is that mathowie didn't track this information until 2000. The truth, however, is far more sinister.
posted by nixerman at 10:36 AM EST on January 23 [!]

MetaFilter is just a government program to corral and keep occupied serious threats to national security, i.e. those folks who refused to drink the kool ade. It keeps the potential troublemakers too busy stimming themselves to cause any real trouble.
posted by caddis at 8:23 AM on January 23, 2006

It took me almost a year before I learned getdate() should have been in the database field for date_joined.
posted by mathowie (staff) at 8:45 AM on January 23, 2006

And look how far you've come. We're all very proud.
posted by JeffK at 10:16 AM on January 23, 2006

Hot-hot mefite-on-mefite stimming action?
posted by boo_radley at 10:23 AM on January 23, 2006

I hereby claim this MetaTalk thread and all its riches for the honor and glory of myself and my heirs.
posted by languagehat at 11:09 AM on January 23, 2006

Did you not like the bookkeeping or something?
posted by eddydamascene at 11:46 AM on January 23, 2006

I hereby deny your claim, and claim this thread and all its riches for bigfoot and the Dutch.
posted by horsewithnoname at 11:58 AM on January 23, 2006

Yay I'm Dutch!!!!

posted by wheelieman at 12:35 PM on January 23, 2006

What is MeFi Jabber status?
posted by spaghetti at 1:32 PM on January 23, 2006

Never mind.
posted by spaghetti at 1:37 PM on January 23, 2006

cortex: I think it's interesting* that you formulated it as "what happened to effect these older dates" rather than "what hadn't happened yet."
One of those things that make you go hmmm (incidentally it's the anniversary of David Cole's death today). Yes, I did assume that it was information lost rather than never having been gathered. Now I'm going to have to reexamine my world view with regard to 'have I lost it or was it ever there?' Thank you for taking the time to give the info mathowie.
posted by tellurian at 2:48 PM on January 23, 2006

sometime in 1999

I'll tell you what happened.

It was the early days of blogging. Sure, there'd been some experimenting, some fooling around, but the ball really was rolling now. There was inertia—and intrigue.

I was a new kid—new to blogging, anyway, but not to the Internet—when a velvety purple invite was slipped under my door. "Hand-coded RDF file?" it read in spidery mauve ink. "You're in...vited to the event of the year. No plus-one."

So I went. It was at the same address as Keene's Chophouse—but it wasn't Keene's. It was beyond and behind Keene's. I was led through the main dining area past what Texas Guinan used to call the "butter and egg" men—the guys who blew money on dames they'd never lay in joints they'd never be welcome in if it wasn't that they had fat wallets full of some of the dumbest money this side of Reno. Out on their asses when out of their dough.

Then through the kitchen, past a tower of pickle buckets, and down a staircase past a card table at which sat a couple of identical fellows about twice as beefy as the porterhouse being served upstairs. They frisked me, which meant a goosing, too. I was glad not to flinch, but I was sweating. It was hot but my guido T was ice cold. My arm pits were itching.

They pushed me through a couple of swinging Deadwood doors and a woman took my coat and gave me a better one, shoved a couple of cigars in my pocket, and then she goosed me, too—only she did it out of a sense of fun and not of malice.

The room was vast. Ordinary-looking people milled about shaking hands, trading little white cards. Drinks were served, waiters made the rounds with food. Long banquet tables nearly collapsed with their bounty.

I recognized these people. It was an accident that I knew anything at all about these people and this place. Weeks ago I was checking out source code on a page whose design I planned to steal and saw a hidden message—about rituals and secrets and "magick." About those who were First. About their initiations and rites. It raised dread in me and then bile rose. I dumped out of the browser, fast, then cleared the cache, dialed in via another provider and cleared my cookies. Shivered and never went back.

I knew, though, that I was now at the first annual A-List ball. The cold chill spread across my back, up the kinch of my neck. My balls tried to crawl back up into my abdomen. These people had seen my visit in their logs. They knew me. They wouldn't let me forget that they knew me. A dangerous circle of knowing.

"I don't belong here," I said to the gal groping my elbows. "Get me outta this place. Who will care for my aged mother when I turn up with size 11 Quikrete boots?" The woman just smiled and made some more smores.

But I was there. I knew how to stay alive. A survivor is what I was. An Indian fellow—spoke perfect English and wore a purple party suit—said he sent the invite. He had a shitty little mustache and kept talking about his purple motorbike. The two fellows outside the door came in, ran the bolt home, and started handing out little white cards. They were freakishly the same, those two. One would talk and the other's lips would wriggle in same-time mimicry. I was sealed in that room with…those people.

The table was set. The dame kept feeding me tidbits. I drank more than I should have. The fear abated but the worry didn't. I kept looking for an out, an exit, but I kept being accosted by pale fellows who would introduce themselves by one name—an outlandish name, usually—and look at me expectantly and then, seeing no response, they'd say a second, different name—an ordinary one. Names like David and Jason (several of these) and Frank and Joe and Chet.

That night is a haze. I don't remember everyone there. I don't remember getting home. I don't know where I left my boxer shorts. But I do remember this: A fire roared in a Franklin stove—the burner eyes on top were red with the heat. Ten steel handles stuck out of the stove. On the end of each handle, in the stove's inferno, was a number zero through nine. Branding irons.

The next day I thought it was the goosing that made my ass sore, but it was in the wrong place. The hangover was thick, but it wasn't thick enough to forget where my own asshole was, for chrissakes. The pain was higher.

I could seen the mirror that the number 264 was burned red across my left cheek.
posted by Mo Nickels at 4:24 PM on January 23, 2006 [1 favorite]

I love you, monocles Mo Nickels. Will you be mine?
posted by bradlands at 8:36 PM on January 23, 2006

Brad, Brad, when will you learn: I'm married to the Internet.
posted by Mo Nickels at 4:41 PM on January 24, 2006

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