Phrackin' Up:
Explaining David Gonterman

This week's episode:

"Internet Love Song"

Opening Note:

This is one of a limited amount of collumns based on David Gonterman. This, like the Gonterman Shrine, isn't meant to insult David Gonterman. While The Gonterman Shrine is here to celebrate the campy wackiness, however bad as it may be, that is Foxfire. Many of the readers out there might simply dismiss and wonder why such things exist. Jesus Cantilinarian has been observing David Gonterman for a while, and this is his perspective on the matter. Jesus Cantilinarian is not a professional, but simply offers this opinion:


It’s not too radical to say that American society wasn’t ready for the full potential of the Internet when it was introduced in a more public-oriented, easy access way.

American society emphasizes the value of the individual in the whole, that every single person is unique and special.  Unfortunately, this value isn’t true, as groups of people with similar traits form. Thus, for all that Cookie Monster and Big Bird say that you’re special, it’s a crock.

David Gonterman is an example of the Classic American tragedy. While most of his problems are over-exaggerated, it can be boiled down to the fact that he, as a youth, was not like the rest of the people where he grew up. It’s a common occurrence today, as those who don’t work well in a active social environment flock to the Internet. (That, or they decide to take a gun into school next day. Either or, since it’s getting hard to tell which outcome is worse.)   If I was the captain of my highschool football team, do you think I would be writing this column and calling myself Jesus?

So, that’s it. That’s the basic explanation of why Gonterman is like the way he is. It sorta demystifies the whole experience that is David Gonterman by blaming it on his high school experience, but as you know, there’s always more. There’s much more to Gonterman then the names that some kids called him when he was in school, but for this current outing, we’ll just focus on the fact that David didn’t fit in where he lived.

David didn’t play much sports and didn’t have the mentality of the rest of the kiddies. According to him, the teachers despised him, and for the benefit of the doubt [since it’s not that unbelievable], it will go that everyone in a five mile radius of David didn’t like him. He was the odd one out. This left David with the problem: how could he exist? How could he handle every day in this life if it all meant more of the same? What could he do to alleviate his pain?

It’s rumors that David once tried to take his own life. It’s possible.

But, if he did, it didn’t work. So, frustrated with not being able to do anything, what was David to do?

He did what any brooding technophile and crappy artist would do: he got online.

“Sonic The Hedgehog: Blood and Metal” was written over five years ago. (Presumably, since David didn’t bother to date his stories.) During that time, David was hooked up to what was the easiest way to get online: AOL. David was hooked up to the Internet from not the beginning, but close enough.

The Internet probably saved David’s life. David found a place where people were not judged upon appearances, but by their words and the content thereafter. No one had to see what he looked like, so he could easily appear as anything he wanted. People saw David as his words, and amazingly, they liked him.
 David saw all the Internet. He fell into the Furry fandom, and found more people with similar interests to him. He saw and learned about “flamers” and “trolls.” He made friends, started an online romance, and even had a chance to interact with the creators of his favorite comic book (back in the day, when everyone was scrambling to get on the Internet. It wouldn’t be for long when the comic creators realized that Internet fan-boys are twice as annoying as real life ones.)

 He wasn’t David Gonterman, the rejected abomination of his town, but now Davey Crockett, “king of the Cyber frontier.” David had found refuge on the Internet, and with this new surrogate environment, he had a revitalized purpose. He could handle the glares, the dismal daily treatment so long as he could go home and be serenaded by the tones of his 28.8 modem calling dialing up.

David soon began to write, and with that, he posted his stories online. Most of the sites with links saying “Foxfire Studios” still point to Foxfire Studios probably existed before the Internet, but it grew up online alongside David.

All seemed good for David. Life was now tolerable, and it was working its way up to being pleasurable. Then, the inevitable happened: David was massively flamed for a story he wrote.

“Blood and Metal” might have been controversial for the racial undertones, but those were briefly mentioned. In “Sailor Moon: American Kitsune,” the racial content was blown wide open, along with content relating to incest, as well as homophobia. David’s more ambitious project blew up in his face. It seemed like an amalgamation of all his other minuscule stories, “The Mobius Chronicles,” “Sailor Moon USA,” and “The Rangers of NIMH,” rolled into one.

David had presented himself in full to the Internet, and it rejected him. The vicious circle had begun once again.

So, David was now rejected from two worlds, the Online and Real. Was death all that waited for him? Was there no more for him?

Probably not, but he’s still around today.

Throughout all that he has suffered, David has stayed online. Foxfire Studios might not produce any of his material, but David has never closed down his account in protest. He might have taken a two week vacation from the chatrooms and the instant messages, but he would always come back.

David Gonterman has continued to use the Internet, as well as continued to produce more of his work. He has been insulted, degraded, and more recently, parodied with a page of his dancing artwork. But he continues to function online. He doesn’t rip the cord out of the wall, regretting that he ever took that AOL disk and put it into his 3.5 drive.

Why is that?
David more or less has realized that it doesn’t get much better than now.

The Real world sucks. The Online world isn’t much better. But, the Online world still allows for anonymity.  The Real world will look upon him, see his face, and judge him without giving him a chance to open his mouth. The Online world requires him to say something before they can make fun of him. Even though it’s cruel, it’s what David returns to the Internet, time after time, for: a chance. Even though it might respond in a insult, there is a chance for David to produce his work, say what he wants to say-to exist in the way he wishes he could.

The Internet is the Real world for Gonterman. The other world is a mere chore that he needs to interact in when necessary. He’s constantly shown his preference for cyberspace over personal space, and would trade anything just so he could re-enact one of the countless scenerios where he gets sucked into a world where he’s not who he is, but someone he wants to be. Everytime that his system boots up, that the TCP/IP connects and establishes him is a chance that some fluke would happen, that he would look in the mirror and see John Kronos or Davey Crockett or Jon Brisby or even Scarlet Foxfire looking back at him.

So long as he has a connection to a forum that allows him to exist freely, David has a chance to live.

sanna ho sanna hey Superstar
-Jesus Cantilirian