20 years as a legendary underground DJ, will DJ Frontier
redefine the industry?
REVOLUTION: Current Issue,
Issue 12, Volume 1, for Tuesday, October 5, 2010.
New Issue published every Tuesday, and
updated throughout the week. Next issue due online October
Passinault: This is a story that I have mixed feelings
about. I'm not proud of 1989, but I am of what came
INTRODUCTION BY EDITOR AND PUBLISHER C. A. PASSINAULT
is an issue that I wanted to do for a while now. It’s
now the week of October 6, 2010, so it’s time. This
is a special week for me.
It’s time to celebrate my legacy as an underground
DJ, as well as looking forward to what I’m about
of the first things that I did, as a child, was to write
and make games. I was always creative. Of course, I was
always interested in people and parties, too, so my creativity
had to have another outlet.
On March 4, 1988, a teenager, I threw my first party.
Some friends and I sat around a hotel room all night eating
pizza, drinking wine coolers, and watching “R”
rated movies (I believe that we watched Porky's,
and The Secret Of My Success). Other than a tag-along
nerd named Craig whittling soap in a corner all night
(he came with my friend James Johnson), and James and
some girl making out under a blanket on the floor, it
was a pretty tame party, as parties go. We didn’t
trash the room, and were pretty quiet. Of course, my parents
found out, and I got into a lot of trouble. So did Craig,
who’s church-going parents were friends with my
In total rebellion over the overboard nature of the reaction
of my parents (looking back, I still disagree with how
they handled things between 1988 and 1992. From 1992 to
1996, in fact, my parents and I had little contact. I
was really, really, really, REALLY pissed off, and in
some ways, I still am; not at them, any more, mind you,
but at some of my so-called friends. Shawn and Samantha,
in particular, who were closer to me than anyone else
in the early 1990's, were not there for me, and it caused
serious problems which keep us apart to this day), my
I decided to get serious about parties. We formed
an organization called the Friday Night Party
Animals, or the FNPA.
I threw one more party that year, but it was a good one.
I think that, in that party, someone threw a chair at
me because I was defending the girl who was with me, but,
of course, the drunk bastard missed. I got really sick,
though, from mixing wine coolers and beer, and the girl
had to take care of me the next day (I was so sick, in
fact, that I remember vividly how I felt all this time
later. I wouldn’t wish that on anyone, and like
I wrote a girl the other day, yes, I know exactly how
it feels to party too hard).
1989 was a crazy year. I used a fake ID to get a fifth
of Absolute Vodka, and that one bottle of Vodka was the
key to setting up a chain reaction of events that would
run through my life for the next 21 years, as well as
bring a lot of people together. A 19 year old girl would
not even exist today if it were not for that bottle of
You see, I went to visit my friend John Joplin one day
in early 1989, and there was this teenage couple who had
just moved in across the street, Mark and Sabrina. With
that bottle, I made my introduction, we had a party that
night, and within a couple of weeks, we were all roommates.
The parties were the craziest that I’ve ever experienced,
and they were even wilder than the ones that I had in
college. We partied just about every night. I remember
our place packed full of people, drinking liquor and smoking
pot (who were those girls who got stoned in the Graveyard?).
I didn’t smoke anything, but I drank a lot. There
were times when I’d just wander around in a stagger
drinking screwdrivers. One night, I was over by the McDonald’s
and Winn Dixie in Riverview, and I was crawling drunk
on the sidewalk, being walked on, literally walked on,
by Rednecks (which was... weird). Another time, I wasn’t
quite so wasted, and I was drinking my large glass of
Vodka and Orange Juice in the Riverview McDonald’s,
and ran into this really cute Spanish girl who I knew.
Oddly enough, a lot of girls were into me and my drunken
ways back then (today, the girls who are into me are classy
and educated, and it works both ways. I do not like trashy
girls, do not like easy girls, do not like chicken wing
waitresses, and do not like exotic dancers or strip clubs).
The Spanish girl and her friend, a cute blonde, joined
me at the booth, and we flirted. We planned on going back
to the place that I shared with Mark and Sabrina, and,
well, do what young people generally do (and, yes, I could
have had them both), and we left the restaurant together
to walk to my place when the Spanish girl’s drug-dealer
boyfriend showed up. The Spanish girl and I did a lot
of fast talking, convincing him that we were just hanging
out at the M.C.- D’s (It helped that I
already knew him from my old neighborhood, and I have
to admit that I had known that the girl was his girlfriend.
I was brazen like that, and since she and I were into
each other, she was worth the risk) and the girls left
with him (but not before she slipped me her phone number).
So, I went home, and Sabrina winced at my breath upon
returning, and told me that I had been drinking too much.
I then went to bed, alone, and had my fruit loops in a
glass of milk the next morning (I seldom got sick, and
it was traditional to have fruit loops in a cold glass
of milk after every drinking adventure).
During one quiet morning with Sabrina, I came home from
work (one of many jobs that I had that year) and tinkered
around with my boom box (one of many that I had that year....
see a pattern?), and came up with a mix tape. Sabrina
and I were cracking up over it, but neither one of us
knew that, a little over a year later, that my mix tape
experiments would open the door to
my future. Sabrina.... We had fun. At the time, I was
working nights as a clerk in a convenience store a block
away, and Sabrina hung out with me at work one night while
Mark was asleep. We ended up getting wasted in the walk-in
cooler on wine coolers. Sabrina, my drinking buddy.
Such wild times in early 1989. Did I have a lot of friends,
though? Not really. Shawn and John Joplin were my friends,
but that was about it, although I had a TON of “friendly”
acquaintances. I was friends with Mark and Sabrina, but
they were not really my friends when we lived together.
You see, they did not have a car, and I did. They needed
me for a car, and that was pretty much it (although Sabrina,
I must say, eventually cared about me as a friend, and
she convinced my parents to go into Brandon on July 21,
1989, in the middle of a gang war / riot to rescue me
from a Brandon street gang who had kidnaped me. The rumor
was that they intended to kill me that night, and it was
Sabrina who came through for me. My parents sent me out
of town for a while after that.). Through Mark and Sabrina,
I met new people. I met Kerri, who was Sabrina’s
best friend, and through Kerri, I met Jennifer and Eledra.
Some of them knew a few others, and it spread. I even
met Angel Freedman one night at one of our parties, and
she and I started seeing each other. At any rate, a lot
of my friends met Mark, Sabrina, and their friends, and
soon, our lives were forever intertwined.
Sabrina had two sisters, April and Samantha. April and
I never got along, and I didn’t care for
her (although, of the three, April was the most talented).
Samantha and I didn’t get along, either, at first.
Samantha started seeing my brother, who got sick and tired
of her nonsense, and then his friend Eric started seeing
her. Eric and Samantha eventually got married (and, there
was no way that they could have ever met had it not been
for my social chaos of 1989, as both groups never came
into contact with each other until I brought everyone
together). That marriage produced a baby girl, who is
After Mark and Sabrina moved in with her mom, who lived
in Brandon, (and I managed to get my car back, but not
before Sabrina and I broke down in Brandon, and Sabrina
and I had to walk miles back to her house, which at time
Mark had returned home from work, and he sucker punched
me when my back was turned), I started hanging out with
Kerri and Jennifer.
I remember one day, after getting off from work, I had
a car stereo amp short out on me, driving down the street
with sparks showering me from the passenger side where
the amp was mounted. I went by Mark and Sabrina’s
to get tools to fix it, and they had all of this stuff
outside. Evidently, someone had called them and threatened
them, and they were planning on fighting the people who
had called them (it was stupid, I know). I saw humor in
what was going on, and that's when Mark’s friend
Kenny, who was jealous of the perception of my friendship
with Mark and Sabrina, accused me of being the caller,
and started kicking in my car door. Of course, I didn’t
do anything; I was always being accused of things with
these people. So, I left and went over to Kerri’s.
Kerri, upon learning about Kenny denting in my car door
over nothing, called some of her friends over, and 20
minutes later we mobilized 7 or 8 people, who were gang
members, at Kerri’s house, and we went the few blocks
back to Mark and Sabrina’s. Kenny (who was a coward
at heart) made himself scarce, then, and so did the others.
I guess when the fight that they had wanted came to them,
they backed off. I did learn one thing about gangs that
day: They are brave only when they outnumber their opposition.
To this day, however, I still don’t know what to
make about friends who aren’t really friends, and
who act more like enemies. The entire situation was screwed
Of course, Kerri and Jennifer were connected with the
gang, and hanging out with a gang, although they did come
to my aid (Those gangs just look for reasons to fight,
I think. It’s chaos.), was not the brightest idea.
I ended up being kidnaped in July, 1989, for several days,
and after Mark and Sabrina tracked me down up at a Brandon
pool hall over money that I owed them, it took Sabrina
and my parents to get me out of it.
So, am I proud of all of this? No, but it sets the stage
for what was to come, and it all happened. All of that
craziness and the mistakes are part of who I was back
then, and part of the person who I am today (I am quite
different today). I didn’t entirely know what I
was doing, and didn’t quite know where I belonged.
I just wanted to make friends, and the company that I
kept, while not really friends, were a substitute at the
time. I learned a lot, though, and got an education which
few ever get, and live to tell about (I later found out
that the drug dealer boyfriend of the Spanish girl was
a serial killer. He had been executing people by shooting
them in the head. Shawn and I saw him and another guy
that we had grown up with almost kill a guy by beating
him severely at the same store that Sabrina and I had
partied at months before, but after I had been fired from
that store. They didn’t touch us, but sometimes,
you have to wonder. Sometimes, I wonder how I survived
1989.) People wonder why I’m not into drinking and
partying anymore, and I just smile. I had enough when
I was a kid to last me a lifetime.
In 1989, we were a bunch of kids who were out of control.
It didn’t last.
Later in 1989, I got involved with my cousin Jennifer’s
church, and started hanging out with a girl by the name
of Kelley. I spent a lot of time with Kelley, and spent
the holidays with her and her family. It was a refuge
for me. With things settling down, I resumed writing,
and started working on my second novel. With everything
that had happened, I had a lot to digest. One of my fondest
memories of 1989 was sitting on the hood of my Mustang,
watching the sun set at Apollo Beach with Kelley while
we drank wine coolers. I couldn’t help but feel
that life was going to have more meaning from then on.
Of course, the church thing did not last. I tried. I made
a friend there by the name of Darren, but most of the
church people were fake (well, a few of them were there
for me after one of my fights with my parents. Long story
that I don’t want to go into here. Let’s just
say that wrongly insulted my dad, and what I said is something
that he still brings up to this day. Hey, dad, I was just
a kid. I was wrong, and you need to get over it). Brad,
Diane, Barry....... I had issues with all of them and
their hypocritical nature. I even had issues with Daphne
telling me that she would like to be friends, and then
her doing things that betrayed her words. Yes, there were
some exposed nerves when it came to church, for me, and
I was really sensitive to everything that went on there
(I suppose that my limited tolerance with how they were,
and my tendency to overreact, made what happened a self
fulfilling prophesy). When I perceived that the church
people were not being real with me, and I found myself
on the outside, through no fault of my own, I lashed out
at them. They were wrong, yes, but so was I. In retrospect,
I should have just left and forgot about them, but it’s
always been in my nature to fight back. I even egged my
cousin Jennifer’s house, and that is something that
I am sorry about. The way that I handled it was immature,
but, looking back, my perceptions of Jennifer’s
church was correct. They were a bunch of people living
religion, and hiding behind it, and not really my friends.
There were even some really insulting things that my aunt
Bonnie said to me before I started lashing out, and when
I was trying to give them all a chance. She kept insulting
me and putting me down, trying to use some armchair psychology
on me. Back then, being a kid, people could do that. I’m
here today saying to everyone that, once you know who
you are, that people can no longer do that. You have to
give people permission to insult you, and have to accept
the insults in order for them to have any kind of bearing
on you. Sure, if someone has an observation or criticism,
look at it in a balanced fashion, consider the source
and their motivation, and honestly evaluate it if it has
merit. Just because I am different does not give
anyone the right to discriminate against me and to assume
the worst, and does not make me wrong by default!
My aunt Bonnie, in my opinion, is a jacked-up religious
crackpot, and I still feel that way. If she tried to insult
me now, as an adult, I’d laugh in her face and would
promptly put her in her place (You know, in retrospect,
her superficial insults aimed at me was transference of
her own insecurities. I know that, now. Just because people
are too ignorant to try to understand me does not make
me wrong). The Lion, who didn’t know who he was
back then as he tried to live among the silly Monkeys,
now knows what he is. The Monkeys no longer have any power
over the Lion. The Lion can ignore the Monkeys, and merely
roar to put them in check if they get out of hand. I don’t
put up with it, anymore, and I address these things in
an appropriate way (The way that I lashed out at them
back in the day was very inappropriate, and it justified
the way that they treated me in their minds. I'd simply
walk away today, and I should have done that back then).
Also, I no longer tolerate people who are idiots, like
I did when I was a kid. I learned, and now know exactly
what I’m doing. I no longer allow, or enable, others
to limit me.
In early 1990, I disbanded the Friday Night Party Animals,
or FNPA. Something else was about to replace it.
By 1990, I settled down a bit. I started college, and
my friends were actually friends, unlike those church
people, or Mark and Sabrina and their "friends".
Actually, looking back, I was popular in college, and
did not get into any trouble, other than a rival fraternity
president’s girlfriend and I getting drunk in an
empty classroom (Sherry was a cool girl. She was really
I saw very little of Mark and Sabrina, and we pretty much
went our separate ways, not hanging out so much (this
was a good thing, in my opinion. By then, I was tired
of my dangerous, chaotic social experiment, and had moved
on, somewhat). I had dinner with Mark and Sabrina one
night in 1990 at their place in north Tampa, and they
were married (I think), and had a baby by the name of
Amanda. I do remember that they were acting as if they
didn’t trust me, which was to be expected with people
who were insecure. It wasn’t me, it was them, and
I know that, now.
My college friends and I formed a large group, and we
tended to hang out on campus in between classes. A fraternity,
Kappa Psi, formed on campus, and we noticed it. We did
not want to join them, however, and my friend Ron asked
me if we could form our own fraternity. I also wondered
if we would be able to do that, and did some research.
On April 17, 1990, on the grounds of our college, we formed
our fraternity, the Alpha Beta Delta,
which was referred to as the “fraternity of
the social order”. The girls wanted in, too,
so we also formed a sorority, the Alpha Omega
Delta (known as the Alpha Gamma
Delta then). Ron was president of the Fraternity,
I was Vice President (as well as one of the co-founders,
of course), Scott was Secretary and Treasurer, and our
friend Paul was our Public Relations officer (what was
funny is that, despite the lack of parliamentary procedure,
which none of us knew anything about at the time, we had
our officers, and our informal meetings. I also came up
with the offices, and based them on the offices that my
church youth group had in the mid 1980's). Oh, and our
friend Gator, who was a professional bartender, was our
bartender, of course. Gator had a cool van, too, as I
recall. With the sorority, Dawn, who was Ron’s girlfriend,
was president, Heather, who was dating Scott, was the
Vice President, and I forget who the other officers were.
So, we had a fraternity and a sorority, and it was fun.
We hung out at school during our weeks of classes, and
had parties on the weekends. Unlike what had happened
the year before with my “friends”, my friends
were all cool. We did not get into any trouble, and Scott
even tried to teach me how to play poker (I sucked at
it, too, and I still do. Cards and I do not mix well,
as I have no talent for card games).
Although we avoided getting into trouble, for the most
part, Alpha Beta Delta and Kappa Psi got into a fraternity
war. We kicked their butts. The president
of the Kappa Psi fraternity had a girlfriend, a knockout
by the name of Sherry. She came up to me one day, asking
if I was the founder of the new fraternity, and began
to hang out. I became friends with her, and we ended up
drinking on campus, often. Now, before anyone screams
“set up!”, it wasn’t. Neither one of
us got into any trouble. Her boyfriend did not like it,
however. I remember one day, my friend Carl, who was in
our fraternity, flirted with Sherry in front of her boyfriend
(I forget this name, honestly. I think that it was Richard).
Sherry’s boyfriend, the president of the rival fraternity,
got in Carl’s face, and it turned into a fist fight.
Carl won, of course, and the other guy was humiliated.
Our fraternity and sorority parties were creative, and
unique. I remember one of them where I DJ’ed playing
music on a stereo. Although I still drank, it was no longer
to get drunk. We drank just to drink (although Paul, who
had gone to high school with Daphne, the Daphne from my
cousin’s church, and I drunk dialed her one weekend.
She was not pleased, and, yes, I resented those people,
still.) My conception of event planning, and what parties
could be, evolved.
My eyes were opened to the possibilities, too, and I began
to figure out what I was meant to do with my life. Art
and entertainment meant so much to me. I had begun to
consider DJ’ing parties in late 1989, but in 1990,
I began to take it more seriously. Also, the fraternity
and sorority were proving to be useful as a grand social
experiment, and a think-tank of new types of parties.
So, that year, my creativity was unleashed. I published
my first story, City Scene, that year (I need to redo
it, too). I also designed the emblem for the fraternity,
which would prove to be significant because that emblem
was the inspiration for my Passinault.Com emblem, an emblem
which I still use today. At the time, the emblem of the
fraternity was shared by the sorority, too. When designing
the fraternity emblem, I started with the outline of a
wine class, and drew a crest on the inside. I also straightened
out the sides, creating an arrow head logo / seal which
In October of 1990, I thought about my mix tape experiments.
I went out and bought a dubber tape deck boom box and
a microphone. I already had a massive collection of tapes.
I thought of a DJ name. I had taken a Mensa test that
year, and my IQ was off of the charts, at 200. Mensa had
wanted me, especially with my score, bit I didn’t
see a point in joining them. I was known as a whiz kid
of sorts, however, and although I was still very young,
and a kid who was quickly growing up, I looked a lot younger
than I was. So, I came up with the DJ name of DJ Wiz Kid,
which should have been spelled “Whiz”, but
“Wiz” fit “Kid” better. I planned
out my DJ agenda, and came up with a format for my releases.
I would make these mix tape programs, with titles and
themes, and become an underground DJ. This would be used
to market my DJ party business, which I named Party Systems
On October 6, 1990, 20 years ago to this day, my future
began (and you will see how all of this led into other
things, and evolved, over the years. None of this happened
overnight). I produced my first 90 minute cassette program
release as DJ Wiz Kid, Fresh Mix (I know, the name sucked,
but it was what it was). My second release, Nasty Mix
(which also had a crappy title of limited creativity),
was interesting, as my friend John Joplin, who we called
DJ Johnny J on the program, and I went crazy, and seemed
to have a contest to see how many swear words that we
could put in a program, and how vulgar we could get while
playing X-rated Hip Hop. I actually lost some friends
when I released that, as some people thought that I was
It was my third release, Horizons, however, released on
November 2, 1990, which was my first hit. I went to a
college Halloween party at a Tampa apartment with a microphone
and a tape deck. I interviewed people, and then edited
the interviews, creating a “Diamix” of the
interviews, mixed with music, for the program. When the
college students received copies of the tape, literally
thousands of copies were made, and they spread throughout
the Tampa Bay area. I was on my way.
this time I decided to design the PSI Emblem, which was
a curved, simplified version of the Fraternity seal emblem.
This emblem is still in use today as my Passinault.Com
/ Eventi /DJ Frontier emblem.
That year as DJ Wiz Kid, a lot happened. I produced a
total of 19 cassette program releases. The summer of 1991,
I began my second generation of releases with my 13th
release, Waveform. The second generation of releases had
more refined production planning and execution of the
programs, and also had crude covers made with hand-drawn
graphics and photocopy machines. It was delightfully creative,
and underground. By then, I was already well on my way
to becoming a designer and an art director, too, although
those first released covers were so bad, that you couldn’t
tell what I would become by looking at them.
In early 1991, it was another year for college, and most
of my friends could not participate with the fraternity
or the sorority. Although we all kept in touch and hung
out, I had to press on without them. So, I made more friends
at school, and the fraternity and the sorority started
a second year with new members and officers (although
Heather, who had been the Vice President of the sorority,
and I discussed her becoming president of the sorority.
She didn’t have time, but kept tabs on our progress).
This time, however, we were much more serious, and organized.
Michael Garcia, a commercial art major and the president
of the student advisory board, took my designs from the
emblem and created a huge fraternity seal, as well as
smaller ones which could be copied. This became our new
emblem. We had fund raisers, regular meetings, membership
drives, parties, and other activities. We were the largest
fraternity and sorority on campus, and one of the main
student organizations. I became fraternity President,
my friend Randy became Vice President, our friend Darren
became Secretary and Treasurer, and Mike was our public
Paula became the new sorority president, and although
I can’t name most of the other officers off of the
top of my head, Kim Eshelman was the Secretary and Treasurer
of the sorority. She also became my secretary.
the time, I was studying business management in college,
and was one of the few students who was immediately applying
what was learned. My instructor was impressed that I was
learning the course on my own. Indeed, I learned things
running the fraternity and sorority that would have cost
a lot of money had they been a business. I learned my
business lessons by running my organizations.
The fraternity and sorority had a lot of members, and
each meeting was full. The fraternity and the sorority
proved to be very useful for developing a new type of
event, the Interactive Theme Event, which would soon become
a property of my future event planning company. Most of
the members of the fraternity and the sorority collected
my DJ release tapes, and were fans (especially sorority
member Amy Long, who I miss). We had other things, too.
The sorority wanted their own emblem, too, and we began
work creating one for the Alpha Gamma Delta.
In July, 1991, the fraternity and the sorority had a party
at a hotel in Brandon. Our large room was packed, and
Sabrina and her sister April, along with April’s
boyfriend, attended, as did Samantha. It was a very fun
We did well, but it was not as much fun as it was the
previous year. There were a lot of politics. One mistake
that I made, too, was that I failed to delegate effectively
(something that I am very good at doing, today). This
caused problems. When money became involved, too, because
of the fundraisers, things became interesting. There was
some infighting. Paula, for example, had started a successful
fundraising drive, and we made a good amount of money
from it. We ended up in the hole, however, when she took
that money and bought more perishable flowers than we
could sell. In the summer of 1991, Paula and I got into
a fight over the direction of the organizations, and she
tried to have me impeached as fraternity president. I
called a vote on the floor, however, and she was the one
who ended up being impeached.
It didn’t matter, though, as our days on campus
found out about an issue with financial aid, in which
the school was profiting from student loans, and students
had to drop out of school because they could not get their
money. The school, of course, kept that money. So, our
fraternity and sorority got involved, we got the media
involved, and the school got into a lot of trouble.
The Dean of the college showed up soon afterwards during
one of our meetings, declared us an “illegal”
student organization without facility sponsorship, and
then tied us up in all sorts of red tape. Some of us were
soon kicked out of school, for various reasons, as was
Of course, the school lost millions of dollars in the
scandal, and ended up closing down. We ended each other.
So, I left college for the time being, and focused on
In the fall of 1991, I created my 18th release, which
was an explicit hip hop mix called “Bitch”.
In the release, I ripped on (made fun of and insulted)
several people, some of whom were friends of Mark and
Sabrina. The program was very controversial, and I made
the mistake of mailing a copy to Sabrina.
Starting in the summer of 1991, my best friend Shawn and
I began hanging out with Samantha, who was married to
my brother’s best friend Eric. Samantha and Shawn
started seeing each other while Eric was out of the country,
and this did not sit well with Mark and Sabrina.
On November 2, 1991, I had a party in
Apollo Beach to celebrate the first anniversary of the
release of my first hit, Horizons. The party was called
“Sex On The Beach”.
I made the mistake of inviting Mark and Sabrina. They
brought a gang with them to crash the party, with the
main objective of beating up Shawn over Samantha.
party ended up in a riot. People were fighting in the
parking lot. Someone hit me in the back of the head when
my back was turned and sent me tumbling down a flight
of stairs (What’s up with people sucker punching
others when their back is turned, anyway? Mark did the
same thing to me in 1989, and it was both uncalled for,
and cowardly.) Samantha called the police on her own sisters.
My friends and I holed up in the hotel bar. A lot of police
came. The party ended.
It wasn’t over, though.
My parents came back from a missionary trip (they were
ministers), and we not at all pleased with me throwing
parties. They told me that it was time for me to move
A week later, the gang returned to town. Mark and Sabrina
led them to my house, and they surrounded it. One of them
kicked our dog in the mouth, and they tried to get in.
I had called the police (If I had a dime for every time
that I had to call 911 in my life....) , and the gang
left just before they showed up. The gang then went to
Shawn’s work in Brandon, and tried to jump him there.
The police were called again, and Samantha turned up with
some people, and she and Sabrina got into a fist fight.
It was 1991, but somehow, it started to feel like 1989
all over again.
With friends like that, who needed enemies? Sure, I was
making mistakes, but those people were really screwed
up; enemies who pretended to be your friend (not to be
mistaken for the modern definition of "Frienemy",
which is an enemy who is friendly. At least the latter
is open and honest with who they are and what their motivation
My parents came home and were not happy at all. The next
day, I talked to Shawn about the chaos of the night before.
I was upset. I told him that I was going for a hike to
think things out. Well, Shawn misunderstood me, and he
thought that I was suicidal. Upon exiting the massive
woodland area known as Shadow Run, I saw my mini truck
surrounded by police cruisers.
I figured out what was going on, and, not wanting to deal
with the misunderstanding, I retreated back into the woods
before I someone saw me. I figured that they would be
looking for me, so I made sure that it would be hard to
Six hours, a helicopter, 40 police officers, and a team
of dogs later, I managed to evade the police (I guess
all of those war games that I had won while growing up
paid off), and they gave up and left. Although I was far
from suicidal, my life was falling apart. It was about
to become far, far worse. In less than a year, I would
lose everything. It was the end of an era, the era of
DJ Wiz Kid.
I re-emerged from Shadow Run, and there was no one around.
My truck was gone, too. I began to walk home, which was
just over a mile. Halfway home, a car pulled up next to
me. If was Julie Carter, a girl who I knew from the area.
“Chris” she inquired, “I was just up
at the Circle K, and some cops were talking about you.
What’s going on? Are you ok?”
I told her that everything was fine, for now, and continued
home. Of course, by then, news of my suicide hike was
all over the community. I even heard that some people
called the radio station and dedicated some songs to me
over the air (Gee, how nice of them!). I couldn’t
believe how much things had gotten out of hand.
Days later, I was in a crappy duplex apartment in suitcase
city, one of the worst areas of Tampa Bay. During my delightful
stay there, until early 1992, I completed two more releases
as DJ Wiz Kid, Shawn and Samantha moved in with me (in
other words, they used me for a place to have sex), and
things were worse (I’d go into it, but it is beyond
the scope of this feature. Let’s just say that life
was unpleasant.). I also was robbed at gunpoint, which
was fun (not.... I gave the robber a $20.00, he told me
that he was going to kill me, and I ran away before he
could get off a shot). The highlight of living with them
was our new Super Nintendo, which Shawn had stolen from
his work (it was a prize in some store give-away, and
he swiped it from his manager's office, I learned), and
spending time playing Super Mario World with
Samantha. It’s sad, I know, but I got good at the
game. We spent a lot of time playing games on the stolen
Super Nintendo, but it wasn't meant to last.
In early 1992, Shawn, Samantha, and I, despite all of
the fights that we were having, moved into a normal apartment
in east Brandon. We lasted there just over a month. During
that time, Samantha and I got into a fight, and she poured
toothpaste inside of my boom box, and all over my tapes.
Now, I don’t know about anyone out there who has
not experienced the destructive nature of toothpaste,
but it’s bad. I still have those tapes in a drawer
somewhere, and they STILL have toothpaste on them. My
boom box, of course, was completely destroyed. I wouldn’t
be able to make any more releases for a while.
I wasn’t the perfect room mate, either, as I was
immature about some things, but in the end, it did not
Shawn and Samantha broke the lease and left to move in
with his mother in Georgia. They asked if I wanted to
go to Georgia with them for the weekend so they could
come back down and get their things, so I figured I’d
go. It was a mistake. I’m guessing that Shawn had
been running his mouth about me to his mother, his step
father, and his family, because they treated me badly
when we arrived. Samantha and I had the pleasure of hearing
Shawn’s mother insult me and talk down to me in
a drunken tirade the entire way down to Florida from Georgia
(to this day, I never want to speak to his mother again.
Bitch!). When we did get to the apartment in Brandon,
Samantha was pissed off about the whole thing, sticking
up for me, and started arguing with Shawn’s family.
She then dragged me into my room and started crying, and
telling me that she did not want to go. As for myself,
I didn’t know where I was going to go, or what I
was going to do. I told her that she would be better off
leaving with him.
So, they left. Kim, my ex-sorority secretary, and her
friend Jennifer came to get me, but before they got there,
my sister and her boyfriend showed up. They told me that
I could go live with them.
I will say that 1992 was the worst year of my life, and
that no one, especially me, deserved it. I wouldn’t
wish what happened to me on anyone.
Out of the frying pan......
So, I moved in with my sister. At first, it was ok, but
more and more people moved in (Literally). I sold my truck
to make rent, further complicating things for me. Eventually,
we moved to a house miles away from anything, off of the
Little Manatee River in Ruskin. It became the White
Trash Colony, where everyone fought over
food, drank, did drugs, and slept with each other!
At one point, I walked along the bank of the river, and
reflected on what was going on with my life. It was then
that I had an epiphany, and realized that I had to take
responsibility for what was going on in my life. That
was a turning point, but still.... I had no idea how much
worse that it was going to get.
I didn’t get along with anyone, especially after
I turned down the sexual advances of some of the girls
who lived there (I did NOT want to catch VD, which was
a risk because the girls were sluts, and I remain free
from disease today!). It was wonderful. I spent my days
escaping by swimming miles out into the waters of Tampa
Bay, and explored islands for a few weeks that summer
(I was almost attacked by a shark, and almost did not
make it back one day when I had to swim back in a severe
thunderstorm). Eventually, though, we all got into a huge
fight, and they kicked me out with little more than my
DJ releases in a sealed case, and the clothes on my back.
My "supportive" Grandmother came to pick me
up, berated me, and dropped me off at a mission, which
turned out to be a cult (In my review of the Brainjacked
indie film, I implied that I could relate to several things
in the film. Well, I lived some of that crap, and it was
not a good time for me). After a week at the cult, I walked
away. I went down the street, where one of my sorority
members lived with her boyfriend. They didn’t seem
to care about my situation. I ended up hitchhiking to
the Riverview Library, where I did research on public
assistance programs which could help me.
Keep in mind, too, that, after the riot of late 91, that
I had quit drinking (wouldn’t you quit drinking
if your party was rioted, and you realized that you had
to stay sharp and could no longer afford to let down your
guard around people?), and that I did not do any drugs.
I’ve never done drugs.
My brother and his girlfriend came and picked me up. I
stayed the night with them, and then they dropped me off
in Tampa. I tried to get my Grandmother to listen to reason,
but she wouldn’t help. So, I ended up sleeping on
a patio, which was little more than a cement slab, behind
my parents' church.
That did not last long, either. My parents called the
police on me and told them that I was suicidal, which
could have conceivably been the case by this point, but
it wasn’t. The police picked me up and took me to
Baylife, which was like a public Charter, for
A week in Baylife wasn’t that bad. The food was
quite good (it was catered!), although there were some
messed up people in there. I stopped my roommate from
killing himself. What was most sad, though, is all of
the people who were hooked on medication. I refused to
take any meds.
When evaluated by their doctors, they realized that I
was not suicidal, and was not crazy. I met with someone
from the Salvation Army, which was not a prime option
for me because it was dangerous there, and they had all
sort of weird rules. Luckily, the stay at Baylife bought
me time, as the research from the Library yielded an interview
with an agency for homeless recovery, which few people
there knew about. When it came time for me to leave Baylife,
my interview awaited. Actually, it was the day before
My brother, Sean, and is girlfriend, Karen, came and picked
me up They dropped me off in Tampa, and I spent another
night on the cement slab, or patio, behind my parents'
The next day, I got on a Bus and went to the Interview.
I received vouchers for food and supplies, and moved into
a boarding home in Drew Park.
At this time, I spent a lot of time at Tampa Bay Center,
which was my favorite mall in the Tampa Bay area. I worked
a job in the food court at the mall, running into another
one of my sorority members in the process (we had a LOT
of members when we were active). I did not have a car,
so I spent a lot of time walking. I was in really great
shape by the Summer of 1991, with all of the swimming
and walking that I had done. After losing my food court
job at the mall, I obtained a security job, and began
working at a building and adjoining parking garage at
the south end of Rocky Point, as well as another outside
security job at a reservations center near the airport.
Rocky Point was too far to walk, and I had to take a bus
(I had to wait six hours after getting off of work to
take the bus back home, but I only worked that job on
the weekends). I spent a lot of time hanging out at Rocky
Point by the water, listening to music on a cheap $19.95
Oh, but it gets BETTER!
I made friends while in Tampa (and, oh my God, I’m
going to tell this story), and I made friends with a guy
named Chad. Chad, you see, really was my friend. When
my boarding home situation came to an end, he and his
mother showed up at the door. They told me that I could
move in with his aunt, a nurse named Bobby, in Northdale.
So, I moved in a rather nice house in Northdale. The family
did not believe my story, however, and his aunt told me
that they were “not easily conned”. The thing
was, however, that I was telling the truth! I wasn’t
That living arrangement lasted a week. I was at work at
Rocky Point, and Chad’s mom and Aunt showed up,
dropping my possessions at my feet in garbage bags. They
asked for the house key. I asked them why they were doing
this. They told me that they knew that I “had been
driving her car around”. The thing was that I did
not do anything! I did not touch their friggin’
car! To this day, I believe that their teenage son had
been taking their car, and that I got the blame.
The entire episode was so embarrassing that I could not
face my friend Chad, and I disappeared from his life.
So, I moved all of my things into the basement of the
parking garage. My brother stopped by the next day and
took most of my things to his house. For several days,
I lived in a parking garage. Do you realize how hard it
is to sleep when you fear that carbon monoxide poisoning
will overcome you, and that you won’t wake up? I
didn’t get much sleep that week.
I made friends, however, with a security officer named
Mike, and his girlfriend Audrey. They spent time with
me, and drove me to my grandmother’s house. Finally,
my grandmother agreed to let me move in (could it be that
she finally figured out that I was trying to correct my
mistakes? Either that, or she figured that I could help
her out with bills.)
And that was the end of my hell of 1992. It was now August
1992, I think, and I had endured about six months of absolute
I did several things at that point. I went back to college.
I obtained another security job. I saved up for a car.
I also bought the first video game system that I ever
purchased, a Super Nintendo,
and a copy of Zelda: A Link To The Past. I loved
that game, and beat it by November 1992. After all that
I had been through, I figured that I deserved some fun.
So began my serious video game hobby, and my second childhood,
albeit a responsible second childhood where I paid bills
and kept my jobs.
early 1993, I returned to college, studying creative writing,
theatre, music, public speaking, and other subjects (and,
I might add, I’m quite pissed off, still, about
the student loan company claiming that I took out loans
for my third year of college, when I paid for all of my
courses out of pocket. The problem with student loans
at that time is that my first two years of college were
expensive, and the colleges were private colleges which
were not accredited; their credits would not transfer
to a real school such as Hillsborough Community College
or The University of South Florida. So, sure, it was great
that I had the highest score on their entrance exam that
they had ever seen, but I was ineligible for more student
loans or any kind of scholarship, not that they have scholarships
for geniuses in the real world. That didn’t keep
the student loan people from claiming that I had loans
for HCC, though, even though I paid out of pocket, or
having to start all over again. It also didn’t help
that my fraternity and I had put my previous college out
of business). I wrote two stageplays in 2003, and made
a lot of friends at school. Two beautiful women, Aimee
Sietzman and Janet Enriquez, who were in my theatre class,
spent a lot of time with me. One of my plays, The Outcast,
was a Christian play that I was trying to get produced
at a local church. The play was greenlit by the youth
group, and I had Aimee and Janet help with casting. That’s
how I learned how to run auditions, and how to cast. Both
of the women were professional actresses with a lot of
experience, and they taught me.
There were problems, though. Few of the kids could act.
The girls and I began to discuss bringing in actors from
the outside. The problems got worse. Some of the kids
in the youth group asked me if I was a Christian. I was
honest with them, and told them that I was not.
Well, religion turned its head, again. We were not Christians,
and it got around. The youth minister called me in his
office one day and told me that the pastor had stopped
production of the play because we were not Christians.
I then went directly to the pastor after his service,
got in his face, and told him off. I pulled out, and the
girls left with me.
And people wonder why I began to dislike people and religion
around this time.
As of March 6, 2012, the rest of this story is being written,
and will cover 1993 to 2002, which is the rest of this
story, and will bring us to the present.
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A. Passinault - Posted
I finally devote an entire issue of Frontier Pop to video
games. This ought to be popular, and all video game-relevant
articles will be added to this issue long after it is
archived, so it, like other subject issues, will continue
to grow, and evolve!