Subj: W.M. Cooper
Date: 11/7/01 8:55:16 AM Pacific Standard Time

Just read the news about Mr. Cooper and wanted to share a few thoughts with

Mr. Cooper, or "Uncle Miltie", as he was known to some of us, was certainly a
colorful figure. Yeah, he certainly had a direct route to our darkest fears
and urges. Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, a man who also worked the same side of the
street as Cooper, certainly could have done quite the story/interview with
him. I suppose it is best that he never did. The resultant may well have been
a matter/anti-matter reaction, culminated by one of the most lengendary
two-man gunfights the west has ever seen, Thompson on one side, blazing away
with a .300 H&H Thompson Contender and a FIE-SPAS shotgun, and Miltie with
representatives of his considerable arsenal. The firing to only abate for the
combatants to crack a new bottle of Heaven Hill Bourbon and quaff deeply and
restore their souls.

My first inkling of Uncle Miltie was on the hoary old Fidonet UFO echo, a
place that was the place to be, at one time, in those days when dirt was in
beta testing, and the Internet was essentially two Dixie Cups and a piece of
string, or some such. Lotsa people that we all know today made their "names"
their. You know their names, they know their names, so I won't list them now.

Miltie was far and away, one of the most...errm..."entertaining"
correspondents on the echo. Even back then, one could expect regular verbal
explosions from Miltie, replete with rather creative grammer, syntax and
spelling. It was pretty well known that there was a direct corralary between
said creativity in content and form, and whatever he had been pouring down
his neck at the time of writing and transmission.

Oh, we had other colorful souls there(Not the least of which was The
Redoubtable Larry Jaster) but forsooth, there was only one Uncle Miltie. No
invective was out of bounds, and one can assume that his job specialty in the
Navy was learning them all, and know them all he did, even some that I, a
roadie, had never learned or considered. Be advised: roadies are usually the
most profane person in any room, but there has never been a man-jack amongst
us who could hold a candle to an Uncle Miltie in Full Cry, Well-Lubricated.

I think that Uncle Miltie saw himseld as a God's Samurai for The Truth, in
his romanticised self-image. Perhaps, though, he forgot that one of the most
important parts of the symbol of the Samurai, the Katana, is the sheath. It
protects the blade and the bearer. Usually, the mere existance of the *whole*
Samurai sword shebang, on the person of the bearer, was enough to communicate
the intentions of said bearer and obviated the need for said bearer to go
lopping off heads. I don't think that Miltie retained that essential aspect
of the thing. No, as time went on, he just wanted to whip that thing out and
cut someone.

So now he's gone. I guess he's left us in the way he always wanted to go,
guns-'a-blazin', striking the great blow for Truth, Justice and The American
Way As He Understood It. Oh, I am sure there was a side to him that wanted to
see his daughters grow up, marry, bear grandchildren, all those good things
that tend to reek of normalcy. But when you frequent The Dark Places that
reside in human nature, aided by the salubrious effect of Demon Alcohol and
abetted by that nagging suspicion that you are the true repository of The Way
Things Really Are, I guess that holding your hand over that burning candle
becomes something of a habit...

...because the pain is the one thing that filters through the alcohol, the
loneliness, the isolation that results from the criticisms and the knowledge
that you are the only living repository of The Truth(Not to mention the
horror and revulsion that your behaviors, aided by Demon Alcohol, tends to
engender), the domestic strife and brutality, the gold scams, the militia
call-outs, the felony charges and all the other things that tend to cause
chaos in one's life and the emotional encystation that results from same.

And the pain is the one thing that lets you know that you're still alive.

Seeya Uncle Miltie. It's never been dull.

Take care, Kento.