Frontier Pop Issue 12: DJ Revolution.

FRONTIER POP: Frontier Pop Issue 13 - DJ Revolution: 20 years later, DJ Frontier stands on the threshold of achieving the future.

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After 20 years as a legendary underground DJ, will DJ Frontier redefine the industry?

DJ 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 12, 2010.


100510-0805 - Passinault: This is a story that I have mixed feelings about. I'm not proud of 1989, but I am of what came later.



This 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 to do.
Frontier Pop Issue 12: DJ Revolution.One 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 parents.
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 friends FNPA: Friday Night Party Animals. 1988-1989. Art by C. A. Passinault.and 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 Vodka.
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 forTampa modeling portfolios, model testing, and modeling portfolio photography. 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 now 19.
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 up.
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 attractive, too!).
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 presidentTampa headshots for talent, actors, and business 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 pointed down.
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 Incorporated.
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 crazy.
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.
The evolution of the Passinault emblem.Around 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 relations officer.
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.
Alpha Beta Delta Emblem MK 2 - 1991At 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 party.
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 were limited.
Apha Beta Delta Emblem MK3 - 2006We 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 I.
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 my DJ'ing.
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.
Alpha Omega Delta sorority emblem MK1 - 2006My 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 out.
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 is).
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 find me.
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 work out.
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 evaluation.
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 the interview.
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' Church. Amen!
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 Walkman clone.
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 conning anyone!
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 misery.
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.
DJ Frontier art by C. A. Passinault, of course!In 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.

(To be continued.....)

NOTE: 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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C. A. PassinaultC. A. Passinault - Posted 10/05/10: 0810

First! 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!

PUBLISHED 10/05/10

UPDATED 03/06/12

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