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Great article on Walter_E _Wallis

Original post made by Fan, Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Mar 21, 2007

Thank you Molly for your article on our friend Walter.

I don't always agree with him, often don't understand him, but love him for his interest, wit and openness. I feel I know him and know him better now. And Walter, keep it up. don't let anyone stop you. I hope I have as many interesting opinions when I am your age.

Comments (35)

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Posted by A.J.
a resident of Green Acres
on Mar 21, 2007 at 6:02 pm

I find his sarcasm and close-mindednessto be detrimental to many discussions. I do however appreciate that he identifies himself and doesn't take those potshots without taking responsibility for them.


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Posted by Observer
a resident of another community
on Mar 21, 2007 at 6:38 pm

Whenever I see Walt's name, I can't help of thinking of Bob Dylan:
Come mothers and fathers
Throughout the land
And don't criticize
What you can't understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road is rapidly agin'.
Please get out of the new one
If you can't lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin'.

Not that Walt likely ever cared for Dylan, of course.


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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 21, 2007 at 6:56 pm

Walter is one of the reasons I would like to be able to block some posts as is possible on digg.com. His comments are no better than SPAM.


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Posted by Citizen
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 21, 2007 at 7:06 pm

Walter is the best thing on this website.


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Posted by Walter E. Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 21, 2007 at 8:05 pm

I was familiar with Dylan, but more a Mel Torme fan. I observed and predicted that the whiney lifestyle he champions would not have legs. Blues without the suffering. Nony Mouse, I am not all that you are blocking. Be very careful lest you learn something.
Molly, you did good.
Others, thanks.


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Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 21, 2007 at 9:11 pm

I love Walter_E_Wallis. We should be exceedingly grateful that we have a true renaisssance man among us. By the way, is Walter_E_Wallis really SGov. Arnold_ F_ Schwartenegger?


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Posted by SkepticAl
a resident of Ventura
on Mar 21, 2007 at 10:05 pm

Walter in the article seemed like an interesting guy, someone I could talk to. Walter online offers interesting perspectives but rarely manages to follow up or enhance any extended discussion without distortions or insults. Too bad... But in the parlance of the younger generation, "props" for putting your name and your face out there with your strong opinions. Whoever vented on you through vandalism ought to be not only ashamed, but arrested.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 22, 2007 at 7:10 am

The governator should live so long.
It is one of my weaknesses that I tend to respond to an insult with a better insult. Nobody's purfekt.


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Posted by Observer
a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2007 at 1:25 pm

Walt is a Mel Torme fan - I should have guessed!
(Of course, I was right in regards to his opinion of Dylan)


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Posted by Carolyn
a resident of another community
on Mar 22, 2007 at 3:18 pm

Mel Torme was a talented voice in our house, but whenever I hear his name, I remember with a smile the fun my brother and I had spelling people's names backwards.

I love coming upon Wallis' short but spirited posts.


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Posted by Dick
a resident of Palo Verde
on Mar 22, 2007 at 5:29 pm

I look forward to Walter's letters and posts. They are colorful and word-for-word say more than others. And I often agree with him.


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Posted by Tammy
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Mar 22, 2007 at 10:46 pm

I agree with the comments made by A.J. and SkepticAl. I wish Walter didn't pepper his comments with insults, name calling, and goading. It unfortunately diminishes the value of his argument, which I can't imagine he'd purposely want to do. If Walter were to refrain, then I could read his opinions with greater consideration than is possible now. I would honestly like to see that happen! Walter has walked the earth long enough to have opinions and I suspect several of them are actually worth hearing. But in order to effectively reach a person like me, those remarks need to be presented in a generally kinder, more respectful manner. (Not trying to say that I'm right and Walter's wrong -- obviously some people like his posts the way they are. Just saying what works for me and what doesn't, and wishing things could be a little different.)


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Posted by Kirk
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Mar 23, 2007 at 7:12 am

Wheere can I find the article on Walter Wallis?


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Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 23, 2007 at 7:21 am

Sorry for a fading memory - even before Mel Torme there was Spike Jones. I may be mistaken on another point, but I believe I usualy do not insult except in response to a non sequitor insult first offered to me.


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Posted by RS
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Mar 23, 2007 at 8:15 am

Kirk, try this link

Web Link

Tammy, Nicely articulated.


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Posted by Juliet
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 23, 2007 at 10:58 am

I thought the article wasn't very good. It said nothing about where he grew up, where he was educated, anything about his original family or any current family, and what in his background turned him into a person who doesn't care what other people think. Something inside him died or was killed a long time ago, the ability to connect to other people. That would be interesting to read about.


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Posted by theopaul
a resident of Barron Park
on Mar 23, 2007 at 2:08 pm

Juliet....good points.....

the article is quite superficial....

that's on the surface, for those of you in the second grade...


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Posted by Resident
a resident of Meadow Park
on Mar 23, 2007 at 2:21 pm

Walter is the best contributor to this forum in my opinion.


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Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 23, 2007 at 4:12 pm

All Walter knows, is that he knows nothing. He's the gadfly in the marketplace like it or not. Please keep the hemlock at bay.


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Posted by Sonny
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 23, 2007 at 4:12 pm

All Walter knows, is that he knows nothing. He's the gadfly in the marketplace like it or not. Please keep the hemlock at bay.


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Posted by Fan
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 23, 2007 at 7:24 pm

Juliet

Point taken, but I still think it was a good article. I wasn't interested in reading a biography, although I understand some possibly would be interested. I just found that seeing a picture of him, learning a little more and finding the few interesting things the article mentioned was very informative. If I was Walter, I would not want the public to know all my history, that could be left for an obit. Leave him his privacy, his family and background are his business unless he chooses to share it, not ours. We can read his pithy comments and put a face to the name and a personality to the insults. That is enough for me.


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Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 23, 2007 at 7:57 pm

I was born in Missouri, came West in the rumble seat of a 1928 Oakland in 1936 with 2 older brothers one younger sister. Raised in Sacramento, entered the service from there. Year in Korea, CIB, several PUCs, 5 battle stars. Tried Civil Service after discharge, didn't like it. 7 years in the desert at a chemical plant where I married and started family and completed engineering education. To the Bay Area in 1960, worked at cement plant, shipyard and finally engineering office. Went into private practice in 1975. Two children still in area, 4 grand children, 2 great grand children, one grandson in Marines. I obviously care what people think because I do this to influence their thinking. I developed my willingness to go against the grain when I put my lily white on the line to oppose Jim Crow back when that was not a good career move. I may have been an early opponent of P.C., probably because I expunged my guilt doing practical things. Obviously I connect with people, just not always to their comfort.


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Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 23, 2007 at 8:16 pm

Walter: I greatly admire your wit and pithiness, not to mention your guts in signing your name ( unlike me).

I learn a lot from you, and what I don't understand causes me to do my research and think a bit. I see your name and always read what you have to say, having the attitude that your voice is like the (excuse me if I am being indelicate here, but I have to say it with all respect and gratitude) "village elder" that we now lack so often. You connect us with our history, and remind us when we are forgetting our lessons of our past.

Thanks!

All that said, I have to agree that once in a while it is hard even for me, a great admirer, to look "beyond" the sarcasm and name-calling and understand what you are trying to say. On the other hand, you are truly goaded sometimes, and I can understand your reaction. And, frankly, you have more than earned the right to express your opinion, not only by your fighting to defend the freedom to express any opinion you wish in your youth, but by the fact that you sign your name and OWN what you say. It is time we all got a little thicker skinned, and remember what some of the great wits have said about others ( think of Mark Twain, WC Fields or Winston Churchhill and their delicious insults)



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Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 23, 2007 at 8:45 pm

I have not yet attained the ability to consume a quart of whiskey each day as those three you named are reputed to have done.


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Posted by Wolf
a resident of Palo Verde
on Mar 23, 2007 at 9:39 pm

Walter,

Nobody in his right mind should care what some overly sensitive conformists complain about, while ridiculously trying their hand in amateur psychoanalysis at the same time. Stay the way you are! Thanks!


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Posted by mmmm
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 24, 2007 at 9:44 pm


I don't think that Walter Wallis deserves all the attention he's getting... Additionally all this to me is another proof that this area, once quite liberal, is becoming more and more conservative all the time.


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Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 25, 2007 at 6:54 am

A notable whose name I forget had been given a fulsome introduction.
His response?
"I don't deserve such an introduction. However I don't deserve a receding hairline, an expanding waistline and failing memory, either, so I'll just make the most of it."
Becoming more conservative is just another word for growing up.


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Posted by mmmm
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 25, 2007 at 4:22 pm

Becoming more conservative is just another word for growing up.

No, it's just another word for becoming old, set in one's ways, resistant to change, and often, unfortunately, intolerant.


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Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 25, 2007 at 4:49 pm

I sit in front of a computer running AutoCAD 2007 and all the other latest engineering software, accepting drawings over the internet and returning my work product the same way, in an engineering practice that started with a door slab across two sawhorses and a T-square.
I admit to intolerance for the fascination some people have with demonstably failed social programs.
I am, as you so astutely deciphered, old. When FDR was my age he had been dead 10 years.


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Posted by Not a fan
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 25, 2007 at 5:28 pm

If he was a woman, his sour geezer utterances would get a very different reception. He'd long since have been called a pest and told to be quiet.


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Posted by Fan
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 25, 2007 at 5:39 pm

This thread is just proving my point.

mmmm conservative is a term that some in the elderly would consider endearing. The Asian community for one tend to respect the elderly as being wise from all their years and worth listening to.

Not a fan women often take pride in being told by men that they are pests and to be quiet. It means that they are hinting at the truth men don't want to hear.

The fact that Walter is in this forum makes it much more entertaining (if this forum could be called an entertainment). It has certainly brought out some of the best comments I have heard from him.


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Posted by Fred Balin
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 25, 2007 at 9:49 pm

Hey Walter,

Wasn't that you at the reunion of the first Homebrew Computer Club meeting (March 1975) that our Stanford/Palo Alto Macintosh User Group hosted a few years ago at SLAC auditorium ...

... the reclusive fellow in the blue jacket at the far right in the wide shot close to the bottom of Web Link

... and incorrectly captioned as Gene Wallace ...

... and who was introduced by Gordon French as the man who wrote under the name of "The Old Sailor" in the tech broadsides of the day, ...

... which spoke to that motley crew of radicals, weapons developers, community organizers, physicians, Paly High students, frustrated tech middle managers, and hackers of all stripes, who fueled the microcomputer revolution in the wake of the the tsunami among nerds released the Altair 8800, on January 1975 cover of Popular Electronics?

If yes, please elaborate.


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Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 26, 2007 at 6:46 am

Yes.
Whatever happened to Gordon French? His garage in Menlo Park should rank with the Hewlett Packard garage. I believe everyone in that first garage meeting became computer millionaires except me and, alas, Gordon. If only comodore had not dropped by the wayside.


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Posted by Fred Balin
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 26, 2007 at 10:58 am

Gordon French moved up north a few years ago

Bob Lash, that treasure of a human being, one of the Paly kids at the first Homebrew meeting, who created and still updates the web site referred to above, and who worked valiantly and selflessly in an unsuccessful effort to stop Stanford from demolishing the history that was Bracewell Observatory, Web Link , tracked him down for me two years when I was planning another event at SLAC auditorium where the rapidly increasing Homebrew crowds finally settled in the heyday.

Will get you the contact info.


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Posted by Fred Balin
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 26, 2007 at 11:01 am

Oops .. The correct link to Friends of Bracelwell is Web Link


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