arrived at uc santa cruz walked around my dorm, the legendary Parrington, and noticed that everyone had their doors open, with music playing, and were typing on computers. I asked someone, probably John Vinopal, what this was. He said "we are sending messages and chatting on a compuer network which connects other computer networks around the world. Its called "the internet." I understood immediately and went up to CATS (computing and telecommunications services) and got myself an account:
firstname.lastname@example.org for "subversive steve"
John Vinopal, my next door neighbor had a room with blue lights, and I had a room with red lights. His login name was "banshee" and I saw another login name called "Foetus." Both named after bands I liked, especially Foetus. So I needed to come up with a cool name after a band that would be memorable. It was an easy pick: gristle.
This "foetus" walked into a campus concert and helped me work the door. I can remember so clearly him walking in and saying "I'm foetus!" and sitting down next to me at the ticket-taking table. We became immediately hit it off and foetus aka Rocky Mullin and I are still very close friends.
Account otter@ucscb was writing for GI Joe comics and made characters out of some of the people she knew. She made a "banshee" character, and others. She made a gristle character which become an action figure.
At UCSC Rocky Mullin (foetus), Todd Courtois, and David Van Brink (umlaut) started a performance art group geared towards doing lighting and effects at the newly growing electronic music dance scene aka "rave" scene. We were called Weird Blinking Lights named after the blinking indicator lights on the antique analog synthesizers we favored, as well as the flashing LED retinal stimulators that Todd was building. We started to do more music instead of lights, and wound up playing in and around the SF bay area till this day. I changed my login name to "resonate" or "rsn8" at this time.
But now I go by my real name- just lerner