WHAT IS THE SOUND OF ONE 300B CLAPPING?
BACKGROUND: RUMOR AT THE CES SHOW IS TRUE
There were rumors that Stephen Spielberg was in disguise and walking around the high end audio exhibits at the CES because he is producing a new action adventure movie , SID ARTHUR and THE QUEST FOR THE TUBE AMPLIFIER HOLY GRAIL. starring Harrison Ford, as an Zen martial arts audiomaniac monk, According to my confidential sources Spielberg was in Las Vegas for inspiration. I wondered how I could find him in the crowd, especially since he had the benefit of all of those Hollywood disguises? I came up with a scheme to trap him.
I went to the Western Electric suite because sooner or later I knew he would visit to the Western Electric Temple of the Directly Heated Triode. Nothing more inspired the attendees then the sign above the door of their exhibit...WE GOOFED, BUT WE ARE BACK, PLEASE FORGIVE.
This is how I was able to "trap" Stephen Spielberg. I noticed one man with a Groucho Marx mustache, chomping on an unlit cigar, wearing gray Hush Puppies and a Beavis and Butthead sweatshirt so I walked up to him and asked him the classic question, "What is the sound of one 300B clapping?". He smiled and twitched his eyebrows because he knew that I knew who he was. Stephen in disguise took my arm and walked me outside and said, " I know who you are Dr. Gizmo, Guildmeister of the Triode Guild, because I too read Positive Feedback on the potty, and I read all of your articles and completely agree with you, can we meet for lunch..in secret?"
MY LUNCH MEETING WITH STEPHEN SPIELBERG
I went over to Stephens suite at the Hard Rock Cafe, which is right next door to the Alexis Park exhibits. Our lunch consisted of cold poached Norwegian salmon in a creamed dill sauce, with a grapefruit and avocado salad. For desert we had double espressos and a lemon sorbet. Stephen had a dry white California Chablis with his lunch, I had a Perrier. To close our meal we shared round wooden toothpicks, and Romeo Y Juliettas.
Stephen, with his typical warm charm, told me that he too was on a quest for self-knowledge, and this quest was being expressed in his search for the tube amplifier Holy Grail. According to Stephen, tube amplifiers and the Holy Grail are the same totems of spiritual integration,
He asked me if I wanted piece of fiction, but somewhat weak because it doesnt deal with thermionic moral dilemmas). Then he handed me a folder and told me to read the script synopsis.
MOVIE SYNOPSIS: SID ARTHURS TRUE STORY
Sid Arthur operated a very successful chain of mens clothing stores known for their great style and value. SMART MEN SHOP AT SIDS, the billboards said, and he had thousands of happy customers who were thrilled to shop at "below wholesale prices" and get the latest designers styles. Sid Arthur was a very good businessman and made lots of money. But his real love was music, and he couldnt stop thinking about it, and Sid was also a crazed audiomaniac. Sid was the patron of the opera, the symphony orchestra and was a well known personality at the local jazz clubs. Sid was a hi-fi salesmens dream come true, and even received "Customer of the Year Award" from Andy Singer. Sid Arthur didnt care about expensive cars, flashy jewelry, yachts or show girls, because he deeply cared about the artistic quality of his life, and he was ready to pay for more musical ecstasy. To help him in his quest he read twenty different audio publications. To expand his awareness and balance he became a master of the martial arts.
Sid Arthur studied and he listened and he bought, and he tweaked, and he wasnt happy, and he didnt know why...but something was missing from the music in his home...and no amount of money spent on new equipment made the music feel right. Soon Sid Arthur owned the best of the best and though he tried, he wasnt getting the musical thrill he needed. Then his best friend Bernie died of a heart attack on the golf course. Sid became very sad and depressed so he turned to his Beatles albums for comfort and he heard once again the harmonics of Ravi Shankar and realized that he had to go to India to find the answer to his audio suffering. It was time to let go and travel The Way of The Triode.
Sid wandered around India and fasted for months in caves, stopped reading audio magazines, slept on beds of nails, walked barefoot over hot coals, studied the Karma Sutra, and spent a great deal of time just sitting on the banks of rivers and just listening. When Sid got bored he got wild and crazy and had real action adventures, including romances with exotic Indian Princess, fights with snakes, and torture at the hands of evil three headed audio dealers, Sid Arthur was feeling very happy because he had lost sixty pounds and had finally realized that he needed very little to have spiritual happiness. But that nagging unsatisfied audiomaniac feeling was still in his soul, and he kept on wandering and searching.
One day while wandering near the junction of the three sacred rivers, The Triode Junction, Sid Arthur saw a very large bald man sitting in the lotus position with a great calm smile on his face. Sid approached, bowed respectfully and sat down next to The Large One, and together they just listened to the sounds of the river flowing by. After many hours of listening The One Who Is a Mountain spoke to Sid Arthur in a voice that was as still as the evening lake and asked, "What is the sound of one 300B clapping ". Sid Arthur thought and thought and did not know the answer to the question, so he did not speak, but just sat and listened to the sound of the river and he didnt know why, but he started to cry and a great weight was lifted from his soul. Then Sid feeling very peaceful fell asleep.
When he awoke he was alone. Sid Arthur felt reborn and he knew it was time to return home and start exploring the mystery of the 300B. Sid returns to America, lives at the Triode Monastery, saves the Presidents life and prevents terrorists from blowing up Carnegie Hall, and even though Tara Banks is madly in love with him and hounds him in her Sports Illustrated bikini, he returns to the Triode Monastery to meditate on the sound of one 300B clapping. THE END.
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