#Flashpoint Chat with Katherine Ramsland

Transcript of chat with Katherine Ramsland, 19 November, 1998, sponsored by Event Horizon and held in the channel #Flashpoint on IRC.
Session Start: Thu Nov 19 20:35:24 1998

[20:35] *** Now talking in #Flashpoint

[20:35] *** Sanguinarius sets mode: +o Sanguinarius

#Flashpoint created on Thu Nov 19 15:30:50

-> *chanserv* info #Flashpoint

[20:39] -ChanServ- The channel #Flashpoint is not registered

<Sanguinarius> <fidget-fidget>

[20:47] *** SonjaBlue is on IRC

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<Sanguinarius> hi

[20:47] <SonjaBlue> oh my you got ops

[20:47] <SonjaBlue> rotfl

<Sanguinarius> coz I’m the first one here

[20:47] <SonjaBlue> it’s not time yet is it?

[20:47] <SonjaBlue> no there was someone here earlier.. an hour ago

<Sanguinarius> I think in about 10-15 min

[20:47] <SonjaBlue> guess whoever it was gave up

[20:47] <SonjaBlue> LOL

[20:48] * SonjaBlue nods

[20:48] <SonjaBlue> had to guess, wasn’t sure of the time difference

<Sanguinarius> kaluza?

[20:48] <SonjaBlue> yep that’s it kaluza

<Sanguinarius> they left then I left and came back in :>

[20:48] <SonjaBlue> ah

[20:48] <SonjaBlue> lol

<Sanguinarius> <fidget-fidget>

* Sanguinarius fighting the urge to register the channel…lol

[20:49] *** EH_Dave has joined #Flashpoint

[20:49] <SonjaBlue> hahahahaha

<Sanguinarius> You’d think thye’d already have it reg’d

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<Sanguinarius> hello

<Sanguinarius> hello

[20:49] * SonjaBlue lols

[20:49] <SonjaBlue> heya Saras 🙂

[20:49] <Sarasvati> ‘allo!

[20:50] *** EH_Dave has quit IRC (QUIT: )

[20:50] <SonjaBlue> go ahead, i registered my nick here too… for the hell of it

[20:50] <SonjaBlue> prolly never come back here anyway

[20:50] <SonjaBlue> lol

<Sanguinarius> me to

[20:50] <SonjaBlue> gee why he quit?

[20:50] <SonjaBlue> =)

<Sanguinarius> dunno

[20:50] <Sarasvati> this serves from #Sanguinarius to here as well?

[20:50] <SonjaBlue> you scared him away Sangi

[20:50] * SonjaBlue grinz

<Sanguinarius> huh????

<Sanguinarius> what?

[20:50] <SonjaBlue> this serves what?

[20:50] <Sarasvati> I am in the Flashpoint room…I though…

[20:50] <SonjaBlue> <SonjaBlue> you scared him away Sangi <=== that was a joke, don’t panic 🙂

<Sanguinarius> oh ok

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<Sanguinarius> this IS the flashpoint room…

[20:51] <SonjaBlue> what is saras talking about? *gets confused*

[20:51] <Sarasvati> hmm…

[20:51] <Sarasvati> Oh!

[20:51] <SonjaBlue> rotfl

<Sanguinarius> ?

[20:51] <SonjaBlue> we’re both on both channels, silly!

[20:51] * SonjaBlue laughs

<Sanguinarius> <—-lost

[20:51] <Sarasvati> I have two rooms in the upper screen… but I am not in mIRC…I was confused as well…

[20:51] *** EH_Datlow has joined #Flashpoint

<Sanguinarius> how can you not be in IRC but be IN irc?

<Sanguinarius> Hello

[20:52] <EH_Datlow> Hi there.

[20:52] <Sarasvati> I signed in on the Java script system…

<Sanguinarius> oh

[20:52] <Sarasvati> wierd…*shrugs*

[20:52] * SonjaBlue laughs

[20:52] <SonjaBlue> it’s the same thing

<Sanguinarius> my browser is SUPPOSED to be java capable, but my computer is possessed so it doesn’t work :/

[20:52] <Sarasvati> oh…

[20:53] <SonjaBlue> you can access it via java or via irc

[20:53] <SonjaBlue> hi EHD 🙂

<Sanguinarius> You edited Blood is not Enough?

[20:53] <SonjaBlue> Hey Sang you ought to register it and then op all of us ROTFL

[20:53] <EH_Datlow> We’re going to try a new chat December 3rd (or whenever our next chat is.

<Sanguinarius> NOT! I don’t want ppl mad at me

[20:53] <SonjaBlue> Ah Ellen Datlow

[20:53] <EH_Datlow> Yup that’s me. I’m editor of Event Horizon, who sponsers this.

<Sanguinarius> so it’s not tonight/

[20:53] <SonjaBlue> very good anthologies, i like 🙂

[20:53] <Sarasvati> ok… not tonight?

[20:53] <EH_Datlow> Yes we have a chat tonight.

[20:53] <SonjaBlue> hahahahahah people will always be mad at SOMEone

<Sanguinarius> oh ok

[20:54] <SonjaBlue> tonight is the Ramsland one no?

<Sanguinarius> Right

[20:54] <EH_Datlow> We have them every Thursday night. Tongiht katherine Ramsland will be joining us.

[20:54] <SonjaBlue> better be *looks accusingly at Sangi*

[20:54] <EH_Datlow> Yes.

<Sanguinarius> she’s cool

<Sanguinarius> what what??

[20:54] <SonjaBlue> oh it’s every thursday!

[20:54] <Sarasvati> *G* yeah!

[20:54] <EH_Datlow> YOu can check our chat schedule.

<Sanguinarius> Well, I saw it in Dela News

[20:54] <SonjaBlue> nebber mind another joke *grinz*

<Sanguinarius> 😛

[20:54] *** davidwst has joined #Flashpoint

[20:54] <EH_Datlow> We’ve got Thomas Ligotti coming on December 3rd.

<Sanguinarius> hello

[20:54] <EH_Datlow> We aren’t haveing one for Thanksgiiving.

* Sanguinarius gives EH_Datlow a @

[20:54] *** Sanguinarius sets mode: +o EH_Datlow

[20:55] <SonjaBlue> LOL

[20:55] <Sarasvati> *S*

[20:55] <SonjaBlue> she’s handing out the ops LOL

<Sanguinarius> should we all leave so you can register and be opps?

[20:55] *** Ramsland has joined #Flashpoint

[20:55] <Sarasvati> naw…

<Sanguinarius> coz I’m only opped being the 1st one in here

[20:55] * SonjaBlue tries to place the name Ligotti

[20:55] <EH_Datlow> Uh oh. Who are you Sanguinarius? The person handling ops is Rob Killheffer. He ..

<Sanguinarius> hello

[20:55] <SonjaBlue> naw just op all of us

[20:55] <SonjaBlue> rotfl

<Sanguinarius> SB, shush

[20:55] <EH_Datlow> will be here soon. And our moderator is Dave Thomer. he should be here too.

[20:55] <SonjaBlue> ok ok

[20:56] * SonjaBlue chuckles

[20:56] <Sarasvati> Hi!

<Sanguinarius> I run Sanguinarius: The Vampire Support Page

[20:56] <SonjaBlue> Hi Ramsland 🙂

<Sanguinarius> Hey, have you visited Sanguinarius: The Vampire Support Page at http://members.tripod.com/~Sanguinarius/gateway.htm lately?

[20:56] <SonjaBlue> oh god

[20:56] <EH_Datlow> Aha. You shouldn’t have ops I don’t think.

[20:56] <Ramsland> hello

<Sanguinarius> *shameless plug*

[20:56] <SonjaBlue> she did the plug thing

[20:56] * SonjaBlue rotfls

* Sanguinarius doesnt like Sanguinarius little @

[20:56] *** Sanguinarius sets mode: -o Sanguinarius

[20:56] <EH_Datlow> I Katherine.

<Sanguinarius> :}

[20:56] * SonjaBlue rotfls!

[20:56] <EH_Datlow> I meant Hi Katherine.

[20:56] <Ramsland> hi Ellen

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<Sanguinarius> I read your book about a week ago

[20:57] * SonjaBlue wonders if the vamps will outnumber the nonvamps tonight *laugh*

[20:57] <Ramsland> ellen, is that like I vampire?

<Sanguinarius> hello

[20:57] <Sarasvati> *L*

[20:57] <SonjaBlue> Hi RobKill 🙂

[20:57] * SonjaBlue goes to check dinner on stove

* Sanguinarius fidgets a little bit

[20:58] <SonjaBlue> bak

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[20:58] <SonjaBlue> Chesh said she was thinking of coming

<Sanguinarius> hello

[20:58] <EH_Datlow> Ah here’s our host for tonight.

[20:58] <Sarasvati> ‘allo!

[20:58] <SonjaBlue> but i lost her in a netsplit *sigh*

[20:58] <Ramsland> hello Dave

[20:58] <SonjaBlue> hi 🙂

[20:58] -SonjaBlue- *Grrroowwwwllll!* |[

[20:58] <EH_Dave> Howdy, folks.

[20:59] <EH_Dave> I have 9:58, what time do you have?

[20:59] <EH_Datlow> What we’d like to do is have Dave start by asking Katherine Ramsland some questions…

[20:59] <davidwst> what’s the name of the book again?

<Sanguinarius> PIERCING THE DARKNESS [20:59] * SonjaBlue lols

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[20:59] <kaluza> hi all

[20:59] <EH_Datlow> then after about 1/2 an hour open it up to all of you. But if we can use protocol, if you have …

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<Sanguinarius> hello

[21:00] <Ramsland> hey morella!

[21:00] <EH_Datlow> a question “raise” your hand with an “?” and I’ll call on you. OK?

[21:00] <SonjaBlue> hi Morella 🙂

<Sanguinarius> ok

[21:00] <morellavamp> Wow, everyone’s here! it is a pleasure, asif is with me, hi!

[21:00] <Ramsland> hi Asif

[21:00] <Sarasvati> ok

[21:00] <EH_Datlow> Dave, I have just about 10pm now.

[21:00] * SonjaBlue nods 🙂

[21:02] <EH_Dave> OK, then, let’s get rolling!

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[21:02] <morellavamp> Hi Katherine! I’m wondering if you plan on continuing getting to know vamps for your own curiosity, and if you became friends or remain in touch with any of those in the book?

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[21:02] <EH_Dave> Good evening, everyone, and thanks for being here!

[21:02] <EH_Datlow> morellavamp, please hold your questions a little while.

[21:02] <Ramsland> Morella, I’m not sure if I can answer yet

[21:02] <EH_Dave> I’m Dave Thomer, and as Ellen mentioned I’ll be opening up our conversation with Katherine Ramsland,

[21:03] <EH_Dave> author of PIERCING THE DARKNESS.

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[21:03] <EH_Dave> If you wouldn’t mind, Katherine, I’d like to start by talking about how you did your research . . .

[21:03] <Ramsland> OK

[21:03] <EH_Rob> Everyone: the format of our show is to start with a half-hour of interview in which our host will ask Katherine Ramsland some questions to cover the basic ground. Then we’ll open up for audience questions. You can, at the point, signal that you have a question by entering a “?”, and our sysops will call on you in turn.

[21:04] <Ramsland> do you have a specific question, Dave?

[21:04] <EH_Dave> both how you built the network you needed to get the info for the book . . .

[21:04] <EH_Dave> and more importantly, how you made teh decisions on when to immerse yourself completely in your subject . . .

[21:04] <Ramsland> My first introduction was by invitation

[21:04] <EH_Dave> and when you felt it was necessary to try and maintain some kind of detachment?

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[21:05] <Ramsland> I was invited to a vampire club

[21:05] *** Sarasvati has quit IRC (QUIT: )

[21:05] <Ramsland> I had spoken to some people online, but this was my first real adventure

[21:05] <Ramsland> I met a lot of people there who gave me more names and places..

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[21:05] <Ramsland> to check out. So that’s how I got my start

[21:06] <Ramsland> Some people found me

[21:06] <Ramsland> But initially I had to decide how far I wanted to go

[21:06] <Ramsland> And I had to decide how “objective” I wanted to be

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[21:06] <Ramsland> Being an existentilist, I tend to want

[21:06] <Ramsland> to get deeply involed

[21:06] <Ramsland> So the objective approach, in which I would…

[21:07] <Ramsland> stand back and observe, just didn’t feel right

[21:07] <Ramsland> Besides, I wanted to have an adventure, too

[21:07] <Ramsland> So very early on, I got fangs and bought some…

[21:07] <Ramsland> great outfits for going to clubs and such

[21:07] <Ramsland> However, I drew the line at drinking blood and taking drugs

[21:08] <Ramsland> That was farther than I wanted to go

[21:08] <Ramsland> Anything else you want to know about that?

[21:09] <EH_Dave> Once you do make the decision to “get involved,” how do you go about reminding yourself that you’re researching something, looking for knowledge?

[21:09] <EH_Dave> or is the trick to try and NOT remind yourself of that?

[21:09] <Ramsland> I think that’s natural to me. I’m always learning…

[21:09] <Ramsland> so for me it’s more about remembering when to take notes

[21:09] <Ramsland> or to write something down

[21:10] <Ramsland> Mostly, I think you DON’T think about “being an observer” or..

[21:10] <Ramsland> even a participant. You just participate.

[21:10] <Ramsland> And hope you’ll remember the highlights

[21:10] <Ramsland> (GA)

[21:11] <EH_Dave> I guess that’s what interests me . . . how much do you find YOURSELF changing in response to what you’re experiencing?

[21:11] <Ramsland> I did find myself changing, and you see that in the last chapter

[21:11] *** morellavamp has left #Flashpoint

[21:11] <Ramsland> I was pretty blase about things by then

[21:12] <Ramsland> So that’s why I took a “mundane” with me to the…

[21:12] <Ramsland> vampyre valantine’s day ball. To see through fresh eyes

[21:12] <Ramsland> I also sharpened my own idea about what I was looking for in a vampire

[21:12] <Ramsland> because there were so MANY definitions offered to me and I knew…

[21:13] <Ramsland> I’d have to really think about it in a way I didn’t expect to

[21:13] <Ramsland> And I learned how “perverse” I really am 🙂

[21:13] <Ramsland> But you do accept change when you immerse.

[21:13] <Ramsland> That’s part of learning

[21:13] <Ramsland> So I tried to record what I could tell about..

[21:13] <Ramsland> those changes, and you can see my

[21:13] <Ramsland> documentation of that throughout the book, I think

[21:13] <Ramsland> (GA)

<Sanguinarius> ?

[21:14] <EH_Dave> Speaking of many definitions, one of the chapters I found most interesting was the point where you drew the distinction between psychic and covert vampirism . . . how’d you come to that conclusion, and why do you think the distinction’s important?

[21:14] <Ramsland> I found so many people calling themselves psychic vampires and…

[21:14] <EH_Dave> And did you ever find anything to counter your skepticism on the psychic variety?

[21:15] <Ramsland> the more I heard, the more I realized that a lot of different phenomena were

[21:15] <Ramsland> getting conflated as one type of thing when in fact…

[21:15] <Ramsland> distinctions should be made

[21:15] <Ramsland> So for me, a covert vampire was about a psychological process…

[21:16] <Ramsland> someone with a serious personality disorder who acts as a vampire to drain other’s

[21:16] <Ramsland> resources, whether that is finanacial, ego, emotional, whatever.

[21:16] <Ramsland> My sense of what a trye psychic vampire is comes from the notion

[21:16] <Ramsland> that some vampires can physically drain life energy

[21:16] <Ramsland> Presumably that would be measurable in some way, whereas

[21:17] <Ramsland> covert vampirism is more subtle and insidious and widespread, and often…

[21:17] <Ramsland> people get into codependent relationships with such people..

[21:17] <Ramsland> and they don’t see the vampirism going on until they’re utterly drained

[21:17] <Ramsland> and the vampire has moved one (GA)

[21:17] <Ramsland> moved on, I mean

[21:18] <EH_Dave> Once you expand the vampire term to the metaphorical idea of something that “sucks the life out of you,” it becomes rather widespread, doesn’t it?

[21:18] <Ramsland> Yes, it does, and you can see it everywhere in our social and…

[21:18] <Ramsland> cultural insitutions and religions

[21:19] <Ramsland> which is what makes this subculture such an interesting phenomenon to me

[21:19] <Ramsland> (GA)

[21:19] <kaluza> ?

[21:19] <EH_Dave> I think we’ll open up the room now . . .

[21:19] <EH_Datlow> Sanguin: ga

<Sanguinarius> what does (GA) mean?

[21:20] <EH_Datlow> go ahead.

<Sanguinarius> oh

[21:20] <EH_Datlow> (Sorry)

<Sanguinarius> I think that there may be rare cases of actual psychic (supernatural) vampirism

<Sanguinarius> …

<Sanguinarius> but most cases are maybe a phenomenon that human beinsgs can learn to do

[21:21] <Ramsland> I have heard that. I didn’t witness it so I didn’t write about my experience of it

[21:21] <Ramsland> the question is, why do they want to?

<Sanguinarius> I don’t know.

[21:21] <EH_Datlow> Kaluza: ga

[21:22] <kaluza> I consider the notion of a vampire, among other things, to have great philosophical potential – which I think is often underused, or even ignored….Have you seen the movie “The Addiction”, dir. by Abel Ferrara, starring Christopher Walken?

[21:22] <Ramsland> yes, I have, having been a philosophy major and professor myself

[21:22] <Ramsland> I wasn’t that impressed with it, though

[21:22] <Ramsland> what are you getting at?

[21:23] <kaluza> I thought it was a reasonably interesting combination of existentialism etc. with the notion of vampires, unlike so many other vampire-works…

[21:23] <Ramsland> I agtee, except that it was too simplistic. Too much emphasis on a very narrow

[21:23] <Ramsland> understanding of existentialism

[21:24] <Ramsland> Nietzsche is overplayed and often misunderstood and made too simple

[21:24] <Ramsland> That was the case in this film, I thought

[21:24] <kaluza> Ah..

[21:24] <Ramsland> But as vampire films go, it was better than a few others we’ve seen recently

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[21:25] <Ramsland> At least there was room for discussion

[21:25] <Ramsland> About all I can say for “Vampires” is that I liked the outfits on the master vampires 🙂

<Sanguinarius> *smile*

[21:25] <Sarasvati> 🙂

[21:25] <Ramsland> I know you can’t do a lot with existentialism or even philosophy

[21:25] <kaluza> My question is this: if vampires are immortal, and each time one becomes one must prey on non-vampires, then wouldn’t that mean the entire population would become vampires after some time?

[21:26] <Ramsland> in general without teaching people some of the stuff, but…

[21:26] <Ramsland> when you try to do something philosophically interesting,

[21:26] <Ramsland> then at least don’t play off the stereotypes

[21:26] <Ramsland> Know what I mean?

[21:26] <EH_Dave> While others in the room think about their next questions, I’d like to go back to the relationship between the subculture and the culture that spawns it . . .

[21:27] <EH_Datlow> There’s a book by Daniel Pinkwater called Wempire that goes into that problem –of the exponential increase…

[21:27] <Ramsland> wait, let me answer that one

[21:27] <EH_Datlow> in vampires.

[21:27] *** EH_Rob has quit IRC (QUIT: )

[21:27] <Ramsland> OK, Ellen, you take it

[21:27] <morellavamp> ?

[21:27] <EH_Datlow> Well, not go ahead. He made it into a joke.

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[21:27] <Ramsland> It is a joke, yes, and besides that, if we’re talking about…

[21:28] <Ramsland> this nineties subculture, many do not consider themselves immortal

[21:28] <Ramsland> or that vampirism necessarily happens that way

[21:28] <Ramsland> Dave?

[21:28] <Ramsland> what was your question?

[21:28] <EH_Datlow> Dave, you want to go next?

[21:28] <EH_Datlow> Then morellavamp after you.

[21:29] <EH_Datlow> OK. morellavamp you go next.

[21:29] <EH_Datlow> I mean now.

[21:29] <morellavamp> does KR remember my question?

[21:29] <Ramsland> The one about being friends?

[21:30] <morellavamp> I also want to know if you think vampires should come out of the coffin at this time in the culture, or not…

[21:30] <Ramsland> As a matter of fact, I still do go to the clubs, talk to vampires on email, call them, get calls from them, etc.

[21:30] <morellavamp> yes, both quesstions, or as much as you want to say…

[21:30] <Ramsland> I never really entered it as an outsider, actually

-> *nickserv* info Ramsland

[21:30] -NickServ- The nick Ramsland is not registered

[21:30] <Ramsland> I loved the vampire, too, so I understood the

[21:30] <Ramsland> appeal without having to ask journalistic questions

[21:31] <Ramsland> So now it’s easy for me to be on good terms with people because

[21:31] <Ramsland> most of those in the book got to see what I was going to write about them

[21:31] <Ramsland> got to change it if they wanted, and seemed to like what they saw

[21:31] <kaluza> ?

[21:31] <Ramsland> As to “coming out,” I guess that depends on how one wants to

[21:31] <Ramsland> come out

[21:31] <Ramsland> some vampires think it’s better to remain secret and hidden

[21:31] <Ramsland> Otherwise, you’re not really a vampire

[21:32] <morellavamp> but is society ready right now, or is the religous right too powerful?

[21:32] <Ramsland> (GA)

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[21:32] <Ramsland> The more powerful the religious right is, the more prevalent will be its shadow side

[21:32] <Ramsland> So the time is right because they make vampires stronger

[21:33] <Ramsland> (GA)

[21:33] <EH_Datlow> Kaluza ga

[21:33] <morellavamp> You heard everyone, Katherine says the time is right!! Into the street, c’mon!! 🙂

[21:33] <Ramsland> 😉

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<Sanguinarius> lol

[21:33] <SonjaBlue> LOL

[21:33] <kaluza> Do you consider the erotic potential of vampires closer to achieving a kind of sexual sublimation, or instead sexual archetype

[21:33] <Sarasvati> 🙂

[21:33] <Ramsland> K, I’m not sure what you’re asking. can you rephrase?

[21:34] <kaluza> That the concept of a vampire would generally enhance satisfaction or instead diminish it by proposing a cliche

[21:34] <Ramsland> Generally, yes, it is as much about life as death, and very..

[21:34] <Ramsland> much about enhancement of sensuality and seduction

[21:35] <Ramsland> The vampire is the embos\diment of dangerous sex

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<Sanguinarius> ?

[21:35] <Ramsland> in the way of having a sexual experience that could kill you or transform you and you decide to take the risk

[21:35] <kaluza> an amplified metaphor for all sexual experiences, basically?

[21:36] <Ramsland> not really

[21:36] <Ramsland> I’ve had some pretty bad sex 🙂

[21:36] <Ramsland> I expect the vampire to be better than that!

[21:36] <SonjaBlue> ROTFL

[21:36] <kaluza> lol

[21:36] <Sarasvati> 🙂

[21:36] <EH_Datlow> Sang: ga

[21:36] <Ramsland> I did place my own personals ad in my book

[21:36] <Ramsland> Desperately seeking vampire

[21:36] <Ramsland> I did not get any bites

[21:36] <Sarasvati> *L*

<Sanguinarius> <Ramsland> The vampire is the embodiment of dangerous sex /… Do you think this would make for more people likely to be sexually daring…

[21:36] <EH_Datlow> (that’s awful!!

<Sanguinarius> and take more risks?

[21:37] <Ramsland> Yes, it does seem to be the case

<Sanguinarius> and be dangergerous to themselves as a consequence?

[21:37] <Ramsland> The vampires I talk to who tell me about their sexual encounters

[21:37] <Ramsland> are using the vampire as a way to experiment

[21:37] <Ramsland> and to take more risks than they might ordinarily take

[21:37] <Ramsland> which is not to say that they are doing what they ought to be doing

<Sanguinarius> …ergh…

[21:38] <Ramsland> Some are certainly dangerous and SOME even want to get a disease..

[21:38] <Ramsland> they want to die. They call this the Glorious Exit

[21:38] <Ramsland> (GA)

[21:38] <morellavamp> Asif has a ?

[21:39] <EH_Datlow> As if???

[21:39] <morellavamp> Asif is my friend & partner, here with me; we’ve taped KR for out tv show

[21:39] <EH_Datlow> Ah. ok GA Asif.

[21:40] <morellavamp> Did you read Ernest Jones’ book on the Nightmare, and what did you think?

[21:40] <Ramsland> Yes, I love that book. I love ghosts and nightly visitations in general,

[21:41] <Ramsland> and anything like that. Why do you ask?

[21:41] <kaluza> ?

[21:42] <morellavamp> you haven’t mentioned that beek in your PTD [Piercing the Darkness]. Do you think his views are revalent to modern day vampirism?

[21:42] <Ramsland> Not really. You mean E. Jones the Freudian, right?

[21:42] <Ramsland> He’s too Freudian for me

[21:42] <morellavamp> right

<Sanguinarius> 🙂

[21:42] <EH_Datlow> Kaluza ga

[21:42] <kaluza> Science and the supernatural generally don’t mix well together …but would you say it’s possible that in the future science will be able to endow us with abilities to make us more mythical?

[21:42] <kaluza> For instance, use genetic engineering to make us vampire-like??

[21:43] <Ramsland> LOL. I love that. Always a paradox

[21:43] <Ramsland> Yes, but then the vampire would not be mythical

[21:43] <Ramsland> So in a way, your question is conceptual, but what you do is..

[21:43] <morellavamp> but all myths are based in reality, right?

[21:43] <Ramsland> show how science might deplete the mystery and the mythic

[21:43] <Ramsland> so then what do you have>

[21:44] <Ramsland> Myths are based in reality, but they then exaggerate things

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[21:44] <Ramsland> to give us a way to have meaning, connection, and organization…and hope

[21:44] <Ramsland> If science made us into vampires, we’d make myth of something else

[21:45] <Ramsland> and vampires would no longer engage our attention as strongly

[21:45] <Ramsland> (GA)

[21:45] <morellavamp> “The world is a vampire…” la la la

[21:45] <Ramsland> 🙂 In some ways. The experience of entropy is vampiric

[21:45] <EH_Dave> I wanted to touch on something brought upearlier, about vampires “coming out” . . .

[21:46] <Ramsland> We create myth and meaning to fend it off

[21:46] <Ramsland> OK

[21:46] <EH_Dave> that also touches on your comment on understanding a subculture by studying the ground from which it comes.

[21:46] <Ramsland> Yes?

[21:46] <EH_Dave> What about the opposite relationship? What do you think those who are unfamilair with the vampire culture can learn about themselves from contact with this subculture?

[21:47] <Ramsland> If they can learn first to not be defensive, they can learn a lot…

[21:47] <Ramsland> For example, the vampire is an extension of the shadowside of ourselves

[21:47] <Ramsland> So what does that mean about us as humans, and in particular…

[21:48] <Ramsland> about our culture in America? We would look at how the vampire here might

[21:48] <Ramsland> differ from the vampire in Asia or Africa, and that would tell us about things we don’t wish] [21:48] <Ramsland> to know about ourselves, but which are nevertheless there

[21:48] <Ramsland> inside

[21:48] <Ramsland> That takes guts, actually, to see

[21:48] <Ramsland> our own darkness and what it means about us

[21:49] <Ramsland> Not many can bear to do it

[21:49] <Ramsland> But the increase in the subculture’s population is akin to

[21:49] <Ramsland> the pressure of a subconcious too long repressed

[21:49] <kaluza> ?

[21:49] <Ramsland> It takes on a life of its own and then watch out!

[21:49] <Ramsland> (GA)

[21:49] <EH_Dave> What happens when you decide to stake out that territory on the dark edge of our culture? Does someone who embraces the vampire identity wholeheartedly might have a “lightside?”

[21:49] <EH_Datlow> kaluza ga

[21:49] <EH_Datlow> Oops after Dave.

[21:50] <Ramsland> Of course. No one is wholly dark or wholly light. In fact..

[21:50] <morellavamp> but we all must see our dark self, if we are to truly know ourselves in any sense. Everyone does this in some way….

[21:50] <Ramsland> I’ve meet “healing vampires,” vampire families, benign vampires, etc, etc, that is, vampire who want to be like white witches

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[21:50] <Ramsland> Even Wraith in my book had his light side

[21:51] <Ramsland> He wanted to turn his dark deeds into poetry

[21:51] <Ramsland> Into something that heals the soul

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[21:51] <Ramsland> Tho I don’t think he succeeded

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[21:51] <Ramsland> (GA)

[21:51] <EH_Datlow> kaluza, ga

[21:51] <kaluza> Isn’t there the danger, though, that as the subculture increases people are attracted to it because it is more of a “fad”, its fundamental powers lost? The underground becoming more mainstream and thus obscuring its own effects?

[21:51] *** zsdlfiu34 is now known as SonjaBlue

[21:52] <Ramsland> I think this is already happening

[21:52] <Ramsland> I make a point in my book that while the vampire is a malleable iamge,

[21:52] <kaluza> the fact we are talking about it right now, right here…

[21:52] <Ramsland> it appears to be getting stretched out

[21:52] <Ramsland> And I do see evidence of people just getting on the badnwagon because they want to be “cool”

[21:52] <Ramsland> So that’s a danger..that the vampire will lose its edge

[21:52] <Ramsland> (GA)

[21:53] <morellavamp> As you said in the boo, everyone has their personal definition of the word…

<Sanguinarius> sigh

[21:53] <Ramsland> Yes, which became a bit bothersome to me after awhile

[21:53] <Ramsland> Even put me in danger

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[21:53] <Ramsland> I was looking for the edginess of the vampire as I knew it from childhood, and I

[21:53] <Ramsland> went out into the woods and met a murderer

[21:54] <Ramsland> I found the edge, all right

[21:54] <Ramsland> But perhaps wouldn’t have gone so far if I hadn’t tired of

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[21:54] <Ramsland> all the banality that I found in vampire culture

[21:54] <Ramsland> which is not to say it’s all banal, but some of it is and I heard the same stories over and over

[21:54] <Ramsland> (GA)

[21:55] <EH_Datlow> If anyone has questions please signal with a ?

<Sanguinarius> ?

[21:55] <EH_Datlow> OK Sanguinarius ga

[21:55] <EH_Dave> I’ll jump in for now . . . the whole Wraith encounter, particularly the poetry aspect, intrigued me . . .

<Sanguinarius> I’m not sure I understand…

[21:55] <Ramsland> In what way?

[21:55] <EH_Dave> Sang, go ahead.

[21:56] <Ramsland> Sang?

[21:56] <EH_Dave> I’ll wait. :0

<Sanguinarius> sorry, go ahead

[21:56] <EH_Datlow> Sang you go first, then dave.

<Sanguinarius> ok

[21:56] <Ramsland> what is it you don’t get?

[21:56] <morellavamp> cmon sangi, ask a ?

<Sanguinarius> About the edge..and banality…?

[21:56] <Ramsland> OK, let me give an example…

<Sanguinarius> ok

[21:57] <Ramsland> Recently someone sent me a story written by a vampire about her experience and how she became one an

[21:57] <Ramsland> and why she’s so special…

[21:57] <Ramsland> The person who sent it thought, wow, the real thing, look how original!

[21:57] <Ramsland> Well, I’d heard so many version of that SAME story and those SAME claims that to me it was quite

<Sanguinarius> and it was pretty much rehashed stuff?

[21:58] <Ramsland> derivative and unoriginal, and certainly not edgy

<Sanguinarius> ok

[21:58] <morellavamp> And yet, everytime I think I’ve heard every wrinkle of vampirism, someone comes up with something new….

[21:58] <Ramsland> I wanted a vampire who really croessed the line, who pushed the envelope so to speak. Who didn’t just build his story off others on the Internet or something like that

[21:58] <Ramsland> Do you see what I mean, S?

* Sanguinarius nods

[21:58] <EH_Datlow> OK Dave? ga

[21:59] <Ramsland> It’s not about “something new, M.

[21:59] <EH_Dave> My question rests in the way acts of brutality and savagery were cast as poetry, as art . . . how did you separate “truth” from “artistic embellishment”?

[21:59] <Ramsland> It’s about something vampiric

[21:59] <Ramsland> That’s a tough question, Dave

[21:59] <Ramsland> Because I do know about fantasy-prone personalities and I thought I had one of

[22:00] <Ramsland> those in Wraith. What he was saying was more conceptual, though

[22:00] <Ramsland> He wanted to demonstrate that someone as sociopathic

[22:00] <Ramsland> as Christian was, who could really go do terrible things, violent things, had a

[22:00] <Ramsland> certain poetry in him, like Hannibal Lector

[22:00] <Ramsland> There was something majestic, Wraith said, in a person

[22:01] <Ramsland> who can go that far and not feel guilty

[22:01] <Ramsland> In fact, Wraith feels that, though the story was presented

[22:01] <Ramsland> the way he told it, people still don’t get it

[22:01] <Ramsland> (GA)

[22:01] <EH_Datlow> Anyone can step in here/

[22:01] <morellavamp> sociopaths do not feel guilt…

[22:01] <EH_Dave> I’d ask what we didn’t get, but that might be feeding on itself . . .

[22:02] <kaluza> It seems to me that the distinction between..

[22:02] <Ramsland> let me say one thing..

[22:02] <EH_Datlow> OK. Katherine, you first.

[22:02] <kaluza> the moral justification of art and its aesthetic power is a vital one..

[22:02] <Ramsland> To Wraith, Christian was a brave soul, an artist

[22:02] <Ramsland> because he could do things that Wraith could only describe at a poetic level

[22:03] <Ramsland> So Christian was Wraith’s poetry embodied, which made him an artist (to Wraith)

[22:03] <Ramsland> It’s the idea of a Nietzschean overman unbounded by even Nietzsche’s ideals

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[22:04] <Ramsland> Or what Foucault was trying to do with his own life, looking for the

[22:04] <Ramsland> transgressive moment, the Limit Experience

[22:04] <morellavamp> WE have to go, everyone, it has been most entertaining! Sangi, please send a log of the chat to vamptv@hotmail.com, so I can read what I missed? Good night, alll…. 🙂

[22:04] <Ramsland> nite, M and A

<Sanguinarius> I’m going to need to go here in a minute too…but

<Sanguinarius> I will send it

[22:04] <EH_Datlow> (it’ll be archived on our site in a few weeks too)

<Sanguinarius> ok

<Sanguinarius> I do have a ? or 2

[22:05] <EH_Datlow> ga

[22:05] <morellavamp> Oh Great! Btw, Ellen & Rob, we enjoy your literary efforts immensely!

<Sanguinarius> me?

[22:05] <EH_Datlow> yes you Sanguin…

<Sanguinarius> Do you have any plans to write another book on this?

[22:05] <EH_Datlow> (thanks, morella:>)

<Sanguinarius> or continue research?

[22:06] <Ramsland> On this very subject? Is there a reason why I should?

* Sanguinarius shrugs

[22:06] <Ramsland> I’ll continue research, but not for the same type of book

[22:06] <SonjaBlue> :>

[22:06] <Ramsland> To some extent, it would repeat lots of stuff aleady there, and

[22:06] <Ramsland> it would also not include the adventuyre, unless

[22:06] <Ramsland> I encounter another Wraith

[22:06] <kaluza> ?

<Sanguinarius> I mean not so much investigating into the sexual aspect…:}

[22:07] <SonjaBlue> rotfl!

[22:07] <Ramsland> then what?

<Sanguinarius> may be the psychosomatic..is that the word?

<Sanguinarius> grr

[22:08] <Ramsland> not sure. Someone mentioned the addiction aspect to me, but it’s not enough for another book

<Sanguinarius> those who think they are physically?

[22:08] <Ramsland> still, I’ve been aware of this for years and I will continue to be

[22:08] <Ramsland> accessible to vampires

<Sanguinarius> Also, 1 more thing?

[22:08] <Ramsland> ok

[22:09] <Sarasvati> .

<Sanguinarius> I have some questionnaires, can you when you have time look them over and see how they could be improved?

<Sanguinarius> plz?

[22:09] <Ramsland> questionnaires on what?

<Sanguinarius> General Interest, 1 on Blood Drinking and 1 for vampires

[22:10] <EH_Datlow> Why don’t you send us the questionnaire and we’ll pass it on to her.

<Sanguinarius> at http://members.tripod.com/~Sanguinarius/genquest.htm, /vq1.htm and /vq2.htm

[22:10] <EH_Datlow> You can send it to datlow@e-horizon.com ok?

<Sanguinarius> ok

<Sanguinarius> ok I will.

<Sanguinarius> thanks

[22:10] <EH_Datlow> kaluza ga

[22:10] <Ramsland> ok

[22:10] <kaluza> Do you think the vampire can be considered an escapist image, in the sense that it provides release from the basic problem of no communication between human minds?

[22:11] <kaluza> non-communication I meant

[22:11] <Ramsland> I think I do see evidence of that with some that I talked to

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[22:11] <Ramsland> They have been abused or they feel cynical about mundane life

[22:11] <Ramsland> or they can’t work out relationships without role-playing to some extent., so whule

[22:11] <Ramsland> it’s not always about escape, it certainly is for some people

[22:11] <Ramsland> and that’s not a bad thing, either

[22:11] <Ramsland> Some people desperately need escape

[22:12] <Ramsland> (GA)

[22:12] <EH_Datlow> Dave ga

[22:12] *** Sanguinarius is now known as Sangi–afk

<Sangi–afk> thanks / bye *waves*

[22:13] <Ramsland> bye sangi

<Sangi–afk> 🙂

[22:13] <kaluza> c ya sang

[22:13] <EH_Datlow> Any other questions?

[22:13] <EH_Dave> What about some of the other blendings of fantasy and reality you found? I was interested in the fluid fiction idea, because it portrayed people who are always, in a sense, living out one fantasy or another.

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[22:14] <Ramsland> Fluid fiction is an interesting concept

[22:14] *** SonjaBlue is on IRC

[22:14] <Ramsland> That’s about the ability (as one man put it) to be whatever you need to be…

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[22:14] <Ramsland> in any given context, so he was a minister by day

[22:14] <Ramsland> and a vampire by night

[22:15] <Ramsland> Heterosexual persona, but gay in reality

[22:15] <EH_Datlow> Kind of like weekend Hell’s Angel.

[22:15] <Ramsland> and he had to deal with issues of identity and continuity, but he felt

[22:15] <Ramsland> he had it mastered. In fact, that’s a very postmodern attitude.

[22:15] <Ramsland> That we are not a single self, but we have many selves (not as in a pathology), and we

[22:16] <Ramsland> can act them out in any way any time, as long as we try to keep someon it it

[22:16] <Ramsland> straight when we need to be functional.

[22:16] <Ramsland> It confused me, but I’ve never tried to be quite as fluid as that guy was (GA)

[22:16] <EH_Dave> By many selves, do you mean that there’s no longer any need for internal consistency or beliefs in values at any given time?

[22:17] <Ramsland> That seems to be the idea. I’ve heard that a lot in the classroom, but…

[22:17] <Ramsland> I don’t know how well it actually plays out in real life. Vampirism

[22:17] <EH_Dave> I mean, I’ve often thought that Dave today and Dave eight years ago are two completely different people but I do have a sense of Dave now as being a coherent entiity . . .

[22:17] <Ramsland> seems well-suited to the idea, since the vampire is in some mythologies

[22:17] <Ramsland> a shapteshifter

[22:17] <Ramsland> (GA)

[22:18] <NancyE> Heh. That sounds very like (name any politician).

[22:18] <SonjaBlue> LOL

[22:18] <EH_Datlow> It sounds like an excuse for no ethical system.

[22:18] <Ramsland> Yes, it has entered into our culture wholesale

[22:18] <Ramsland> That’s what happens to philosophical ideas

[22:18] <Ramsland> First they’re bantered about in the University…

[22:18] <Ramsland> and then they filter down, but at a more subconscious level, without

[22:18] <Ramsland> the arguments and ideas…just a general, vague sense of things

[22:19] <Ramsland> and people start acting them out…like our politicians…

[22:19] <Ramsland> and it becomes acceptable, the norm

[22:19] <Ramsland> It’s not an excuse, Ellen, so much as a confusion about..

[22:19] <Ramsland> why one should choose this set of values over that one

[22:19] <Ramsland> and it’s in some ways an expression of despair, what Kierkegaard called a sickness unto death

[22:20] <EH_Datlow> Right, but they’re usually transformed from what they actually were about

[22:20] <Ramsland> Yes, that’s right, but few people can articulate what’s happening

[22:20] <Ramsland> it just evolves into our culture and corrupts our stability

[22:21] <Ramsland> and no one quite knows how or why

[22:21] <Ramsland> but then we get overly tolerant and lots of things get by us that didn’t used to

[22:21] <EH_Datlow> That’s like every belief. Same thing happened to religion. It starts meaning one thing…

[22:21] <Ramsland> Yes, that’s true

[22:21] <EH_Datlow> and ends up being completely corrupted by those who misinterpret what the “prophet” or whatever meant initially.

[22:22] <Ramsland> But it becomes tragic when

[22:22] <Ramsland> people start talking about such things as the Glorious Exit, because

[22:22] <Ramsland> they can’t see their way through life and its abyss

[22:22] <Ramsland> That idea actually shocked me among the vampires

[22:23] <NancyE> Damn difficult to create your own set of values from scratch. That’s Neitzche.

[22:23] <EH_Dave> I think, too, there’s a distinction between presenting different PERSONAS in different contexts, and truly believing you can slip into a different SELF and be completely untroubled about actions you previously would have denounced.

[22:23] <Ramsland> Some of them just could not get a grip on life, not even in fantasy

[22:23] <Ramsland> just had nowhere to turn and did not know why they should trust anything

[22:23] <Ramsland> or care

[22:23] <EH_Datlow> I agree with Dave here.

[22:23] <Ramsland> But even Nietzsche didn’t think it was from scratch

[22:23] <Ramsland> He grounded it in the body, in nature

[22:24] <NancyE> Yeah. I guess that’s right.

[22:24] <Ramsland> Yes, Dave, I agree, but some of the vampires would not see it that way

[22:24] <Ramsland> They think we’re just being “safe”

[22:25] <Ramsland> Some people I spoke to, like that minister, really thought of himself as different SELVES that had not real connection to one another

[22:25] <Ramsland> And he could create something new at any time and move on

[22:25] <EH_Dave> Funny, I think the fluid fiction idea is from a certain perspective the ultimate safety . . . no responsibility, no contradiction, no remorse.

[22:25] <Ramsland> with no repurcussions from his other lives

[22:25] <Ramsland> That’s not about personas

[22:26] <Ramsland> Yes, I agree with you. It is safety, but it’s also about floating

[22:26] <Ramsland> over the ocean with no land in sight

[22:26] <Ramsland> which is not really so safe

[22:26] <Ramsland> Safety from consequences is not emotional safety, it’s moral safety

[22:26] <EH_Datlow> Certainly not for the people this person is interacting with it isn’t.

[22:27] <Ramsland> Absolutely

[22:27] <Ramsland> They would not like to think they are being baptized, married or buried by a vampire

[22:27] <Ramsland> LOL

[22:27] <EH_Dave> I guess my original point is that there are far more people who buy into, and therefore exploit, the idea of distinctions in personas than there are that accept a disjunction of selves.

[22:27] <EH_Datlow> It seems to me a willful disintegration of personality.

[22:27] <Ramsland> Yes, I agree. I put the minister in the book rather than people like you just described because he’s more the archetype

[22:28] <Ramsland> not just role-playing. He had a framework articulated for himself, but those who create personas often do not

[22:28] <Ramsland> That’s what I said to him, Ellen

[22:28] <EH_Datlow> How did he respond?

[22:28] <Ramsland> He thought it might be the case, but he was not willing to give up any of his distinct spheres or to try to coordinate them into a whole

[22:29] <Ramsland> I would like to see him a few years from now

[22:29] <Ramsland> I don’t think he’d be so smug

[22:29] <EH_Datlow> Sounds like a great recipe for insanity or a nervous breakdown.

[22:29] <Ramsland> Yes. it’s Kurtz, you know?

[22:29] <Ramsland> Heart of Darkness. The horror

[22:29] <EH_Datlow> Yeah.

[22:30] <Ramsland> I could easily predict what will become of him from my psychological experience

[22:30] <kaluza> or Downward to the Earth

[22:30] <Ramsland> He will eventually feel empty and depressed, maybe suicidally so

[22:30] <Ramsland> because he’s making no substantial connections

[22:30] <Ramsland> no one really KNOWS him, and he will feel that one day

[22:31] <EH_Dave> We’re about ready to wrap up . . . anyone have any last questions for Katherine?

[22:31] <Ramsland> It’s actually a borderline personality disorder–living episodically

[22:31] <kaluza> Yes, one

[22:31] <EH_Datlow> Scary and sad.

[22:31] <EH_Datlow> kaluza ga

[22:31] <kaluza> The aspect of the vampire as a

[22:32] <kaluza> melancholy figure

[22:32] <Ramsland> Yes?

[22:32] <kaluza> that flirts with depression through this lack of connections and so forth

[22:32] <kaluza> Is that decreasing as the more aggresive variety takes over?

[22:33] <Ramsland> It does seem to be, K. I found few who were like what you just described. Very few. It’s now

[22:33] *** _Jacque_ has left #Flashpoint

[22:33] <Ramsland> more about life and partying, and going over the top, like Lestat

[22:33] <Ramsland> And that’s how it starts to move away from the mythologies, too

[22:34] <Ramsland> (GA)

[22:34] <EH_Datlow> Thanks everyone. Our next guest on December 3rd (no show for Thanksgiving) is baroque horror writer, Thomas Ligotti, who will be interviewed by Ed Bryant.

[22:35] <EH_Datlow> Katherine, you were great. And Dave, you were a gracious and well-informed host.

[22:35] <Ramsland> Thanks. Good questions

[22:35] <EH_Dave> Thanks for being here tonight, Katherine, and thanks to everyone for coming and having great questions.

[22:35] <NancyE> Thanks for setting this up. Fascinating discussion. And thanks, Katherine.

[22:35] <Ramsland> Thanks, dave. Thanks Ellen; I enjoyed it

[22:35] <kaluza> Thanks Katherine, it was great

[22:35] <EH_Datlow> The whole chat should be archived some time in the next few weeks.

[22:35] <EH_Datlow> You’re welcome, everyone.

[22:36] <EH_Datlow> Katherine give us the name of the book and the publisher.

[22:36] *** NancyE has quit IRC (Connection reset by peer)

[22:36] <Ramsland> Good night then, everyone. Till first light….

[22:36] <EH_Datlow> So everyone can go out and buy it.

[22:36] <Ramsland> Piercing the darkness: Undercover with vampires in America Today

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[22:36] <EH_Rob> If they haven’t already …

[22:36] <Ramsland> HarperCollins

<Sangi–afk> .

Session Close: Thu Nov 19 23:53:38 1998

I’m the founder/creator/page slave of Sanguinarius.org. I’m in my early-to-mid 40s. I have 2 special kitties and a good man.

More info later.

See my website, Sangi’s Corner, for more about me.

Sanguinarius E. Sanguinarius – who has written posts on Sanguinarius.org for Real Vampires.


About Sanguinarius E. Sanguinarius

I’m the founder/creator/page slave of Sanguinarius.org. I’m in my early-to-mid 40s. I have 2 special kitties and a good man. More info later. See my website, Sangi’s Corner, for more about me.
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