A sad commentary on awareness?

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The following URL will take you to a rather sad monologue initiated by me at my local paper's on-line forum:


Any wonder I feel that I'm the only one in Southeast Wisconsin that "gets it"? I know there are others, but there is, frankly, very little interest in discussing the subject, as evidenced by the above.

Other subjects on the forum, incidentally, have received hundreds of replies (Bill & Monica, the Senate race, etc.).

-- Steve Hartsman (hartsman@ticon.net), October 19, 1998


Steve, you sure did the best that anyone could do. And indeed, you never know, what you wrote may plant a "seed" so that maybe the next time there is a Y2K reference, it might get people moving. Good job!

-- Jack (jsprat@eld.net), October 19, 1998.

Steve, that was an excellent short presentation. Maybe no one listened in Wisconsin, but this guy 'gets it' in WV.

Good job.

-- rocky knolls (rknolls@hotmail.com), October 19, 1998.


Keep it up bud. Don't get discouraged. You're like the unofficial and most proactive PR guy for the forum.

Currently, a very good friend in Milwaukee is sending me clippings from the Journal Sentinel and some inside info I can't share. He knows about it Steve, don't dispair. I just hope he's getting himself and his family ready.

Your state appears to be above the curve in awareness. At least there is a forum. In California, nothing. Maybe an article here or there but nothing substantial or consitent. No official is talking. LA, nada. No official is saying anything.

You're doing great Steve. You'll be an excellent Press Secretary when the New US is established!

Mike _____________________________________________________________

-- Michael Taylor (mtdesign3@aol.com), October 19, 1998.

I thought a little encouragement might be helpful so I reposted my response to "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus...revisited" under your posts.

Having lived in Waukesha, Oconomowoc and Peewaukee for a while, I felt a bit obliged.

BTW, it looks like you're being heard -- there were some extremely important words of encouragement from the bbmaster there -- looks like your going to get your forum. Hats off and congratulations.


-- Arnie Rimmer (arnie_rimmer@usa.net), October 19, 1998.

Steve, didn't you see this message posted by the web master? -buddy ______________________________________________________________

posted 10-19-98 04:53 PM CT (US)

Quite to the contrary, Steve Hartsman, the reason your response is only now getting my attention is that I have been dunking my head in the Y2K bucket and only rarely have time to come up for air.

I am on 3 Y2K task forces here at the Journal Sentinel: one for desktop users, one for network administrators, and one for contingency planning.

I applaud your comments on Y2K and promise to create a forum within the next few days. Also, I'll take the liberty of moving these postings over to that topic.

Sign me "Swamped in Y2K Land"


[This message has been edited by jsonline (edited 10-19-98).]

-- Buddy Y. (DC) (buddy@bellatlantic.net), October 19, 1998.

Steve, I agree with Jack and the others on many oints, but chief is that you as a teacher, which you are, cannot know what happens with the seeds you plant. I understand well the concept of feedback loops, and how frustrating it is when you don't receive feedback...on down the pike. As teachers we rarely get to know our impact upon those we teach. Do not let that discourage you...Erik Erickson, the psychologist stated once, or more probably many times that life journeys are fraught with discouragement,...and that as humans on those jouryneys, we all needed encouragement regularly in order to "sally forth". Please consider yourself encouraged by me for your excellent teachings,...me whose next days jobs include the NEXT letter to the seemingly apathetic city council...upping the ante, so to speak.

Boldly go,...you are a shining example to me. We can/will continue to cheerlead each other as the winds blow discouraging words...and the skies are not cloudy all day...LOL

-- Donna Barthuley (moment@pacbell.net), October 19, 1998.

ON AWARENESS and ITS LACK I have this quote I am fond of, and have posted at our Beyond 2000 discussion board. It very much applies to awareness and not seeing, and the wise who point:
Lawrence Blair writes in "Rhythms of Vision":
When Magellan's expedition first landed at Tierra del Fuego, the Fuegans, who for centuries had been isolated with their canoe culture, were unable to see the ships which anchored in the bay. They were so far beyond their experience that, despite their bulk, the horizon continued unbroken: the ships were invisible.
...The shaman first brought to the villagers' attention that the strangers had arrived in something which, although preposterous beyond belief, could actually be seen if one looked very carefully. We ask how could they not see the ships--they were so obvious, so "real."
Magellan's ships, the Fuegans, Y2K and many, many people... If people blink just right, they can see,...if they get a quirky jog to perception the begin to see....it takes what it takes...Steve you are doing your part. Bravo.

-- Donna Barthuley (moment@pacbell.net), October 19, 1998.

Excellent posts Steve! And Arnie too! Keep it up and don't give up, I'm sure it will get attention sooner or later. You got an excellent response from the bbmaster himself, that alone gave you much of the weight of the journal behind you. It's going to get those who read that website's attention at least.

-- Chris (catsy@pond.com), October 19, 1998.


Awareness is growing, here in WI and elsewhere. I have enlightened several friends and relatives, and others are catching on. The real problem will be with the huge unprepared masses.

I was in Milwaukee over the weekend. We had some time to kill, and we were checking out the Third Ward. We wandered a bit farther south, and ended up in a neighborhood where I wouldn't want to hang around, Y2K or not.

I kept thinking: "Most of these people are barely getting by as it is. What will they do if TSHTF? Even if they know about Y2K, how can they prepare?"

Scary stuff. Public awareness isn't enough. Unless there is some way to take care of people in this type of situation, things could get very ugly.

Keep up the good work. Maybe enough people in Milwaukee (and elsewhere) will "get it" and the worst problems can be avoided.

-- Mike (gartner@execpc.com), October 19, 1998.

Buddy Y:

The bbmaster made his post sometime after my posting here. It is encouraging that it will finally see a bit more light.

Thanks to others for your encouragement. It is always darkest just before the dawn.

-- Steve Hartsman (hartsman@ticon.net), October 19, 1998.

Steve...fine job that you are doing! You could have quit, and stopped trying...but you didn't!!! Keep it going. :-) Blondie

-- Blondie Marie (Blondie@future.net), October 20, 1998.

Steve -- Thank you, thank you for hanging in there. Im at a little under 50 hours of Y2K web research and your thousands of hours plus has just made my comprehension, and consequently, that of my friends, that much faster. Your time invested really will pay dividends in reducing others learning curves.

I just moved out of the mountains of Southern California back to Silicon Valley. I thought I would try to start out with some consulting jobs. I still will. My focus has changed now.

Given that I really do need to have incoming cash flow, at least as long as possible, do you know of organizations in the S.F. Bay Area that are really serious about helping get the Y2K word out? I have an M.B.A. in Marketing and Management and a background in the OnLine, CD- ROM, and Computer Imaging industries. Ive dealt mostly with small business and start-ups. Im also very good teacher, trainer and speaker.


-- Diane J. Squire (sacredspaces@yahoo.com), October 26, 1998.

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