Heiser Christmas Letter 1985

SPORTS
This year I was lucky to sail on the big catamaran Dreamer with Irwin & Pat Blumenthal and with John & Sue
Mallett.  In May, Irwin took us all the way to Ensenada in great style.
I ran nearly 900 miles this year, most of it by the beach.  Running helps us office workers use up excess energy.
I discovered boogie boards too; what a thrill!  Small waves seem to push them just as fast as big ones do.
I may get older, but I refuse to grow up!
BUSINESS
Que had my book, Real Managers Use Personal Computers! translated into Spanish and Norwegian.
For six months this year, I've been teaching the process planners at Hughes Aircraft's Space & Communications Group how to edit text with  IBM's Profs.  
In the process, I've been learning a lot about designing and "building" texts.  
Teaching is so satisfying that I've been thinking of becoming a schoolteacher.  Maybe I'll become a Lisp programmer, instead.    
I would like to design a smart graphics program.
LEISURE
Have you heard the electronic music of Philip Glass?  Its high repetition rates and slowly changing
patterns are more like rhythms than like melodies. You might call it baroque rock 'n roll.  I like the
weird arias, and look forward to  his next album, with Linda Ronstadt.
Kurt Vonnegut's new novel Galápagos is short and sweet.  It took him three whole years to write, and has a
perfectly beautiful structure.  I'm analyzing it to see if I can do likewise.  Like Ernest Hemmingway, Kurt
Vonnegut makes writing look a lot easier than it is.  I'm hoping that being willing to polish every line
will accomplish a lot.  Vonnegut says writing is "like blowing up a blimp with a bicycle pump."

What's hot: fresh chile salsa with tortilla chips.  Yum!  Eat a pint a day.
What's not: Carl Sagan's new book Contact.  It's full of cryptography, radio astronomy, and Russians, but
Sagan uses hundreds of pages to build a preaching platform.  I never get tired of my own preaching, but
other people (even Very Nice other people) have to keep it brief!
POLITICS
The nuclear arms race, nuclear testing, and "star wars" are very disturbing to me.   Because we and the
Russians are both so vulnerable, I believe our security will be found in the Golden Rule: we'll be safe
only if we let the Russians be safe too.
At a New Year's Eve party, I learned about a lady who called herself "Peace Pilgrim".  She walked around
the U.S. for 25 years promoting both inner peace and peace between groups.  She advised "Live all the good
things you believe."  How could you argue with that?
1986 Forecast
In February, I will pack up my furniture, sell my car and motorcycle, and join the Great Peace March.  Five
thousand of us will travel fifteen miles per day for nine months to promote nuclear disarmament.
The march will be like going back to school for me. Instead of computers, I'll be concentrating on foot
massage, tree identification, weather forecasting, and comet–gazing.  Loretta has given me a recorder, but
I haven't practiced enough to be any good yet.  I've even started writing a stand-up comedy routine!
Pro-Peace is organizing everything and recruiting the marchers.  It's a colossal undertaking, like getting
ready for the Olympics.  I've been thinking a lot about what to take along; it's challenging to get ready
for so many changes.
Practicing for the march is getting me out into nature.  Gotta stop looking at my feet all the time,
though!
Schedule highlights:
Leave Los Angeles: March 1
Denver: May 21
Chicago: August 14
Cleveland: September 14
New York: October 26
Washington DC: November 12
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