Categories: Personal

So, in 1996, I was a real jerk. Some newbie posted what he intended as helpful advice to comp.lang.c. I insulted him at some length. A while later, he posted pointing out that I had been right… but a phrase stuck in my head.

Pete tore me off a strip and I sat reading his reply
from my screen with tears in my eyes. I had been, rightly, put in my place
and I have learnt from that mistake.

Over the years, it’s occurred to me occasionally that maybe the word “tears” ought to have been some kind of cue to me that my behavior was not entirely within the boundaries appropriate to civil discussion. But I’ve never quite gotten around to doing anything about it.

Today, I finally tracked the guy down and apologized.

I don’t know why I waited so long. A bit lazy, perhaps. A bit afraid. A bit unwilling to admit that I fucked up but good.

Ahh, well. One down. How many thousands left? What of the ones I don’t even remember?

Being a decent person can be hard; becoming one is harder.

Comments [archived]

From: meatwad
Date: 2003-11-26 23:12:22 -0600

Apologies are for wimps. I never apologize. Look where it’s gotten me!

From: Zak
Date: 2003-11-28 07:31:36 -0600

Hi seebs,

You won’t remember me but I emailed you way back (must have been around 97) when your .sig used to be something like “will answer *nix questions for fun”. You answered mine about detaching processes and coming back to them later (use screen, of course). And without mocking my na├»vety in *nix at the time.

So you weren’t all bad, and I was one you didn’t upset or piss off.

Thanks again,

Zak (uk)

From: Cordelia
Date: 2003-12-25 02:10:33 -0600


I thought you were being humble when you told me you used to be an angry little man. I didn’t know you were serious :P

Sorry Seebs, but .. er, no, I am not sorry. Apologies are for peasants :)