Back in 1993 I worked at a movie theater in Indianapolis and met a guy named Shane there who I became friends with. Then I left Indianapolis forever, in fear of the IRS comin’ to get me. But then I swung by Indianapolis again several months later to pick up Shane and fly him all over the country on stolen credit card numbers for Spring Break.

In just under a week, we visited San Diego, Galveston and Cincinnati. Cincinnati was the town we nearly got arrested in after a cop, suspecting us of vandalizing a pay phone, searched my bag and found a bank’s courtesy phone that I’d stolen earlier in the day. Later that night we were both sleeping in a friend’s basement and heard the cops upstairs, apparently taking our friend away. Luckily they didn’t come down for us too. Early the next morning we quietly slipped out a basement window and got the hell out of his neighborhood, hoping not to be spotted by cops on the way to a bus stop. It was fun and more details are at While we were eating somewhere in San Diego, Shane drew this comic of Jim Bayless, a man who is kind of a staple of PLA. It was a great vacation and it’s a miracle that we made it back to Indianapolis with no legal mishaps, considering I was scamming these airline tickets on the fly as we reached each new city.

Colleen and I visited Shane once again in 1994 when we took a vacation (free, of course) to Indianapolis to see him. After that, I never saw him again. UNTIL…15 years later (last night) I noticed his name on a ShmooCon site. A little more digging around found that this Shane was also in Indiana. And then even more Googling found a video of Shane and it was actually him! From reading various websites that him and his friends were on, I found that Shane and I have probably been passing each other at various hacker cons for years now. He’s been a ShmooCon, PhreakNic, Defcon and Notacon.

So I emailed him last night and we did some catching up today. He was equally surprised to hear from me. Both of us assumed that we’d never hear from each other again and it’s kind of a bizarre way to come across each other, especially since back in 1994 neither of us knew that the other was even into computers. Turned out he was manning a table in the very room we kept using to sneak into ShmooCon and his voice can even be heard in the video I made of us sneaking in. A friend of Shane’s showed me an email today from 2005 where he’d written me to ask permission to use PLA material on a broadcast they were doing at a con.

Just bizarre that we’ve been at all these same places together and never knew it. Kind of reminds me of how I was friends with my biological brother in high school, both pining for the same girl for a couple of years, then finding out we were brothers 10 years later. Shane’s going to be at Defcon this year so I’ve got to hunt him down.

Oh yeah, speaking of hunting down old friends, Kristine and I managed to find Brad Thompson last week, a guy we both worked with back in the 80’s. He’s part of the reason (indirectly) I ended up moving to Galveston when I left my parents house in 1991. When I got there he got me a job as a painter with him. Was kind of fun catching up with him too. The internet rules for tracking down random old friends. I need to do this more often.


  • unless, of course, you don’t want to be tracked down! :D

    but yeah, i’ve found a few people i thought i’d never see or hear from again thanks to the internet.

  • Are you going to write a book about your life? Your adventures would make for hysterical reading, and there seems to be no end to them. I know you have had other people suggest this to you before, but I am sane. I’d definately buy a copy, if you were lowdown enough not to give me a free copy.

  • I did write most of a book, but discovered that publishers aren’t interested in memoirs because everyone wants to write about their own life. So I’m in the process of converting it all into a fictional story, which is party shown here. It’s going pretty good, aside from the fact that I’m not a very good writer.

    And of course all Severs get a free copy! I’m sure it’ll get published around 2030, right around the time book publishing becomes completely insignificant.

  • Are you kidding? Your life is way more than a typical memoir. It’s full of action and suspense, of pranking and cactus. I would buy a copy even if you had to print it off and hold it togeather with duct tape!

  • You just haven’t found the right publisher. When I get frickin rich I’ll bankroll you to self publish it. (i’ve looked into this stuff a little, you can get something like 100 books printed and bound for 2 grand or so…)

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