It has recently been brought to my attention that although I write, edit, and format most of this newsletter; folks don't know me from beans. So this month I am turning the spotlight around, and stepping into the limelight myself.
Here is an indepth interview with John Haley, Ambrosia's Marketing Manager and resident geek wanna-be.
Ambrosia Times: Hello John, how are you this evening.
John Haley: A little frazzled. It is eleven PM and I am trying to get this newsletter wrapped up. Up to now I had no idea who I was going to interview. Hector has already been done, and the cat is supposedly dead (although she just walked across my keyboard, I guess ghosts do come out at midnight). But then I said "hey, I'll interview myself!"
Ambrosia Times: That is pretty smart thinking John.
John Haley: Why thank you John.
Ambrosia Times: So, how long have you been with this merry band?
John Haley: Actually, how fitting, this month will mark my first full year with the company. Andrew rescued me from corporate America twelve months ago.
Ambrosia Times: Did you already have a background in computers? How did you originally fit in?
John Haley: Yes and no. I worked with computers on a daily basis but only with established applications and templates. None of this "brew your own stuff" we enjoy here at Ambrosia. The four years previous to Ambrosia, I worked for a large publishing firm, maintaining a very, very large legal reference database. At that point Ambrosia was looking for someone to manage the company's in house databases.
So I was originally hired to do something very similar to what I had been doing, but it immediately became clear that Ambrosia encourages its employees to pursue other areas of interest. So I grew into marketing, DTP (hard copy & E-zine) and anything else that came my way.
I have learned more about computers in this past year then in the previous four (you guessed it, that was a DOS based system). In many ways Ambrosia as a company is very similar to the Macintosh as a computer. A very user friendly environment that fosters growth.
Ambrosia Times: Ok, ok, I think we get the idea Captain Butt-Kiss.
John Haley: Grrr.
Ambrosia Times: With the recent release of Apeiron, there has been a lot of speculation on why your name was attached to a certain hidden sound file. Would you care to shed any light on this matter.
John Haley: All I can say is that Andrew's office is wired better than the Oval Office when Nixon was in. Never, ever, ever say anything that may come back to haunt you later. Actually, it is a losing battle. Andrew knows his way around sound editing programs pretty well, so you can end up saying pretty much anything. No one is safe, nothing is sacred.
Right now he is working as an audio consultant for the prosecution in the O.J. trial. I think he is almost done with the confessional tape.
Allegedly, not only did O.J. kill Nicole, but he played a key role in the Kennedy assassination, and also has something to do with all those planes that disappear over the Bermuda triangle.
Ambrosia Times: What are your other interests?
John Haley: Other interests?
Ambrosia Times: Yah. You know, outside of work.
John Haley: Oh. You mean when the captain lets the galley slaves go on deck for a few minutes of fresh air ;-) I like to stay pretty busy. I have always liked the outdoors and still enjoy camping, hiking & canoeing. I would like to try sea kayaking. Last Easter I went camping in the Adirondacks when there was three feet of snow.
Ambrosia Times: Most folks with any gray matter between their ears sleep indoors when it snows, Nanuck.
John Haley: Trust me, it was great. You would of had to of been there.
Ambrosia Times: When people comment on your writing, the adjectives "strange, odd, wacko and deranged" often come up. How do you respond to this.
John Haley: With a musket ball between the eyes.
Actually, I firmly believe that while going from point A to point B in life, you should gather a few chuckles along the way. Luckily Ambrosia as a company is just about as strange as I am. Cajun & Andrew are definitely out there; although I may be out a tad bit further.
Ambrosia Times: So, is this sort of your philosophy. Spread happiness and good cheer to all.
John Haley: No, I think Santa and the campus beer distributor have that market cornered. I just try to keep a positive perspective, and have a few laughs along the way. It is definitely not altruistic. Just ask Thrasher.
As far as a personal philosophy goes, I'm a Dukist.
Ambrosia Times: Dukist?
John Haley: Yes, I follow the way of the Dukes. I study the duality of Dukism. Briefly, there are the two Dukes. The Duke, John Wayne, and Uncle Duke, from Doonesbury. One has already passed on, the other is immortal. One was a hero, the other an anti-hero. If you look closely at both of these fellow's respective "lives" you can learn a lot.
Ambrosia Times: Isn't Uncle Duke a cartoon character?
John Haley: Yes, but The Duke was a movie character. The difference is insignificant. A moot point (I just love the word "moot"). Did you know that the U.S. government is responsible for John Wayne's death?
Ambrosia Times: Excuse me?
John Haley: Yeah, it's a known fact. In the fifties The Duke did a movie titled The Conquerors, which had a Persian theme. For the desert shots, the production company rented some land from the Federal Government. What Uncle Sam forgot to mention, was that the rented land was right in the middle of a designated fallout zone for the atomic testing that was still going on at that time.
In the film, you see Wayne rolling around in the dust staging fights and stuff. Almost every actor who is listed in the credits of The Conquerors has since passed away from cancer.
Ambrosia Times: Can we talk about computers. I really think we have strayed from the interview.
John Haley: Hey, you are the one asking the questions.
Ambrosia Times: Ok, so I will ask another. Do you have a computer at home?
John Haley: Yes I do. I have an Apple PowerBook 520. It is real handy to have around. A lot of this newsletter was created on my living room couch. It is a great machine, and I am having a lot of fun watching Apple lower its price.
Ambrosia Times: What would be your single favorite software title?
John Haley: That is a toughie, but somehow I knew you were going to ask it.
Ambrosia Times: I should hope so, since you are me.
John Haley: Yah, yah. My favorite software... If me and my trusty PowerBook were stranded on a desert island, and they were going to air drop only one title, I would ask for ClarisWorks.
I would be able to word process messages for those bottles you are obligated to throw in the sea, and I could better manage my coconuts with the spreadsheet function. The database would allow me to index my seashell collection, complete with cross references (a big shiny conch would be found with searches on "conch" or "big shiny"). The drawing program would be a makeshift CAD to design a vessel, and the paint program would be neat to use to draw a phony pirate treasure map. Years later, when they find my sun bleached bones, they will find the map too. They will be digging a hole to the other side of the earth looking for pirate gold, and somewhere I will be chuckling.
Ambrosia Times: It's late, and your scaring me. Interview over. Want to go out for a beer?John Haley: Sure, you buying?
Ambrosia Times: Don't I always?