The following first appeared in the private email list IVy-subscribers,
which was available to all those who subscribed to the
printed magazine, International Viewpoints.

A fistful of Service Facs
by Phil Spickler
17 Jun 00

Hello, fellow Listers!
        I'm pleased to report that the current Service Fac contest is alive
and well.  Some new folks have chosen to enter the contest, but sound as
though they did so reluctantly.  There was even one claim that it's rigged,
which I find hard to believe.  Oh well, as the French say, "Honi soit qui mal
y pense."

         But the really exciting news is that I took a poll of the judges
based on the entries to date, and unless things change radically, it looks as
though Ray Krenik is going to be an easy winner in this latest contest.  Some
of the comments about his entry:

are that it meets the highest standards of pure Service Facsimile,  and that
it's brief and to the point (and as you know, brevity is the soul of wit).
And so, unless something better comes along, it looks like this old-timer is
going to be a shoo-in.

         Some of you may remember from earlier postings that what the person
uses to explain failure is another pretty substantial definition of what a
Service Facsimile is.  Thus we arrive at "the decision to be human" is what
makes it possible for an immortal to fail, to experience failure, and to have
a good excuse for it.  If that indicates to anyone, it comes as a pretty
humorous revelation, since what we are looking at when we see one another
are/is some pretty fabulous Service Facsimiles, which is to say substitutes
for our real selves, and there's no better excuse for failure than to be
human.  As the saying goes, "To err is human, to kick the pants off humans is

       Somewhat more to follow, and with highest regards for those who dare
to communicate --