What is a rutabaga?

There are a lot of different types of Discordians. In fact, there are just about as many types of Discordians as there are Discordians themselves. I'm not writing this to dis on anyone. I'm writing this to explaine what kind of Discordian I'm not.

I've been Discordian for a long time. It's a long story how it happened, so if you really want to know, you'll have to mail me about it. I started my conscious Erisianity in 1992. Around this time I was exploring several local bulletin board systems, but these were mostly small and poorly maintained. In late '94, I got on the actual Internet as such. I thought for an hour about what I would make my username. Did I dare create an homage to my deity of choice?

I did, and nothing's been the same since. I became haileris@crl.com, an address you may know from my prolific days on alt.discordia. Since I had created the username 'haileris', I figured maybe I'd see if I could find other Discordians on this internet thing. My only web access was using the text-based browser Lynx, but that got me around just fine in late '94 when the net was just starting to become the vast consumer playground it is today. I read through the entire Principia one late night, and soon after found links to all sorts of things.

I found alt.discordia and became a very active poster. At one point, I was well-known enough that others on alt.discordia awarded me the title of KSC. I was a frequent presence on alt.discordia until a combination of spammers and Timothy Sutter drove me away. I was also active in several small cabal mailing lists. On one of these mailing lists is where I got the sad inspiration to create the term 'rutabaga' for the type of Discordian I strive not to be.

The mailing list had been fairly quiet for a while, when someone sent an email saying only "rutabaga". I thought about it, and it struck me: modern Discordianism has been very shallow for a long time. People give the Goddess lip service, but go on ignoring her message about blowing your own mind. Their definition of "chaos" is yelling "rutabaga!" in a crowded theatre.

I'm glad that rutabagas exist, don't get me wrong. The world needs more surrealism. However, the rutabagas are accidentally twisting Discordianism from a mindblowing meme to the sort of thing where people say only things like this recent alt.discordia posting I found:

lets all listen to huggy bear naked at 11 pm on oct 23rd at the nearest graveyard and activate cheese conversion the pigs will be fat and happy around that time eh?

Or this one:

Whatever you do, do NOT listen to discordian superconductive eggplant-cut music.
If you do that, you'll be
a) damned to Hell or a reasonable facsimile thereof (new jersey)
b) bathed in pudding until your skin bears the entire text of a letter Rockefeller once wrote to Persephone
c) applied to the Cosmic Cheese Grater

I guess what it comes down to is that I'd like to see Discordians move beyond simple surrealism and into deeper, stronger things that can come when you really question reality instead of just put the bumper sticker on your car.

Those of you used to rutabaga Discordianism may wonder where the Discordia is in the Discordian.com. If you look a little harder, you'll see her peering out of your pineal gland struggling to break through your naked huggy bear rutabaga cage.