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in the world of drag racing

Black Bar

The latest update as of January 19, 1999

The last few days have taught me just how much I take some things for granted. In this case, my e-mail went down (proving once again that even the "big guys" can screw up once in a while) as my service provider, the largest in Canada, lost their e-mail server. The closest analogy that fits is that I felt "deaf and dumb" during that period (yeah, I know, that description fits me most of the time according to some people).

I could see what was happening on the 'net, but couldn't tell whether anyone was "talking" to me or respond to them. I guess I am truly addicted to the web now, as I felt like a junkie hungry for his next e-mail "fix" and couldn't wait to open the mail box again. God knows how I'm going to deal with the inevitable crash of my own computer system one day. I can picture myself banging on someone's door at three in the morning and offering them any amount of money to get it up and running again.

After all the anticipation of waiting for all the pent-up mail to come flooding in, I ended up feeling like a kid at noon on Christmas Day. "That's all there is?..." Along with a few welcome messages, the usual barrage of spam was all that awaited me. It used to annoy me to receive much of that trash, just like the junk mail that takes the place of eagerly awaited racing magazines in the snail mail, but now I'm only mildly irritated and sometimes amused by the trash that people keep trying to push over the 'net.

Schemes that would never justify the mailing costs before the internet came along seem to have multiplied and grown online. After all, with a few "robot" programs to gather e-mail addresses and a cheap e-mail connection, almost anyone can be an online marketer. Whether they have a real product to sell or not.

There really isn't time to do a proper update this evening, so I'll pass along some good news (for a change) and drop a "small" hint about our racing plans for 1999.

ISKY Racing Cams has come through for us and will exchange our camshaft for one that will work with the wedge heads. Even though the receipt was lost, (thanks Rob), they had no hesitation in making the exchange. AND, they're even entertaining the possibility of some sort of sponsorship of Northern Thunder. Sometimes when you're up to your armpits in a manure pile, you find a lucky penny, or a gold ring, or at least a new camshaft....

With all the roadblocks confronting us these days with the engine assembly, the planned departure date for Australia is in jeopardy - again. If you can remember when it was first announced, we were planning to ship the container out in November and arrive in January ('99). Then it was pushed back to an April arrival. Now . . . the bookings have been made for the end of February to ship out and April 3rd to fly out, BUT it looks like we may have to "modify" the plan yet again. No firm decisions have been made either way, but before this week is out we'll have to make them.

All that gloomy news aside, we'll still be downunder with the new race car, ready to run at the Winternationals in June. We might not have our 42 foot trailer with us, we might not have a lot of spare parts or money, but we will be there and prove that we aren't (what the Aussies refer to as) "gunnas". (As in: "we're gunna do this, we're gunna do that").

It hurts to write about yet another possible delay, but better to do it now than make excuses when the time comes due. So, if the next time you check in to the "What's New" page, you notice that the numbers on the "Scoreboard" have increased, you'll know why. More and firmer news later in the week.

LATE NEWS FLASH - Friday at 9:00 pm (Pacific Standard Time)

My e-mail service has been down all day and the stupid program keeps suggesting that I "contact my isp administrator"... yeah, right, being one of 400,000 customers of that particular service provider I'm "sure" to get some personal attention... if I don't mind waiting on hold for three or four hours. So, if you've sent me something in the last day or so and are wondering why I'm not responding, that's the reason. It's got nothing to do with me being "slow on the draw" like Old Hank in the cartoon below. Remember, patience is a virtue, but being late on the lights (or the draw) means going home early.

Slow on the Draw

LATER NEWS FLASH - Sunday at 4:00 pm. (Pacific Standard Time)

My e-mail is still down - can't send or receive anything, but at least the service provider has acknowledged the problem at their website. Their server blew up (big time) and has been down for nearly 48 hours now. They still can't even promise when it will be back up and running. And when it does get fixed, the backlog will take days to clear up probably. In the meantime, if you really have to get a message to me, pick up the phone: (604) 986-4774 or use the fax: (604) 986-4779 or write out a message, tie it to a rock and lob it through my window (suggested for only those people with strong throwing arms - I'm on the eleventh floor...)

Black Bar
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