was initially recruited into the cult of geekdom by account jasona in 1987. I had an Apple IIe, heir to my then-broken Timex Sinclair 1000 but no access to a network. Sure, I did a bit of multivariate statistical analysis on one of the UCSC servers but only for hard-won work-study dollars. Who would use a VAX for fun?
Jasona and I met in the Crown dining hall (he was serving) and he decided I needed to meet a real computer. He introduced me to fnet, forum, mtrek, and mudding -- all the classic ingredients of a misspent youth. Also working in the dining hall was account serling, who many years later helped me get a job at Borland, effectively launching my career as a professional geek.
The words Le Fou in French can mean mental disease, the violent behavior of a mob, Kuru (a BSE-like prion), or madman. Because I had been reading a lot of Alexandre Dumas at the time, (I was so full of myself over the fact that I could read it in French) I signed up for my first ucscb account under that psuedonym.
I met LaFolle (the 'feminine' equivalent of lefou) online shortly thereafter. Many people assumed I chose my name based on his. Living online as lefou I became dissatisfied with being tied to someone else's account and with people who couldn't spell my login. Besides, UCSC was converting to the CATS servers...
I decided to change my login to something CATS-related. I tried fleas, mange, ticks, and other accounts (fleas on cats just sounded cool) but eventually I realized I was redundantly describing a series of diseases. Combining revelation with spongiform encephalopathy, I became disease@ ucscb.ucsc.edu and disease@ cats.ucsc.edu.
(Oddly enough, twelve years later LaFolle performed the wedding wherein I married the love of my life, quark, and I was privledged enough to attend his wedding to the lovely Ms. flannel.)
My fnet (ICB) nickname "RottenHead" comes from the first geek I met, zelly. We met through mutual friends back when she was in Merrill dorms and I was in Crown's Harvey dorm. We never got along. Eventually she was to accuse me of being a completely rottenheaded wrongboy.
She may well be right.