S: Dirk had some problems, I guess, because when he went away, he wasn’t doing a lot of work for The Unknown, and ah—

D: So I got victimized.

S: I suppose there was a little bit of resentment on our part, that you were, ah, traveling around the country, and being places we’d never been and—so we turned him into a cult leader.

B: Cult leader?

S: Yeah, Dirk’s a cult leader in The Unknown.

B: Dirk was not planting grass while he was traveling.

S: No.

D: I was writing the Gospel of the Unknown.

S: Even in Chicago he wasn’t ah—he didn’t even plant grass in Chicago, but he was—that was all right, that was a good division of labor, because he was working on The Unknown, finally. . . . But we’re gonna include these postcards now, with poems on them, to make up for Dirk’s lack of diligence on The Unknown, earlier. . . . It is kind of unfair, because while he wasn’t working on it, he turned into the most interesting character in the whole thing. Cause he wasn’t there, so we were like, “Well, we gotta include Dirk. What should we do now? Oh, let’s have him read Uma Thurman’s mind.”

B: So you get to meet Uma Thurman?

D: At least.

S: Dirk actually has several famous disciples. . . . If you’re gonna have a religious leader, it might as well be Dirk Stratton.

B: Why not?

D: Couldn’t be any worse than some of the ones that’re out there.

S: So you decided to stay here in Cincinnati?

B: It was easy.

S: Was that primarily because the Unknown Network is based here?

B: No, in fact I hadn’t realized the Unknown Network was based here, on my server, until quite after the fact.

S: Uhm, it was pretty covert.

B: It was. That’s what I like about it, though.

D: So Dave did that? Dave arranged for the covert introduction to your server?

B: Yeah. Told me after the fact, “By the way. . . .”

D: How’d he get into your server in the first place.

S: I did email you right when we did it, because I knew it could raise some hackles, potentially.

B: Naw. Now all we gotta do is sort of—fake it. We need to attach it to some kind of academic pursuit, since we’re using a University resource. I think with Dirk’s connection to the English Department—

S: I’m still a member of the English Department.

B: Are you?

D: Uh huh.

S: Oh yeah.

B: Thought you graduated. No, you’re on a Taft.

D: Yeah, he’s on a Taft. He’s just not in town.

B: Well, there you have it. So it’s an academic pursuit.

S: Definitely. We’re gonna take out the sex, drugs, profanity.

B: You are?

S: Well, not out of the text, but we have a navigation bar that says that, right now. That’s gonna go.

B: How come?

S: Eh—cause it’s gotten to the point where we really like the thing, and we think it will potentially get some press, and uh, there’s already so much sex, drugs, and profanity in the novel itself, that we don’t necessarily need to use that as a means of navigation. Because that would make people just comment on that, probably. And that’s not what we’re all about.

Dirk Had Problems
419K RealAudio Clip

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The Unknown at Spineless Books.