MAG Disk (Apr 1996) : StuffToRead / Amigarella.txt

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From: Giorgio Gomelsky <gio@phantom.com>
Newsgroups: comp.sys.amiga.advocacy,comp.sys.amiga.misc
Subject: Amigarella (Cinderella?)
Date: Wed, 10 Apr 1996 04:01:27 -0400
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                AMIGARELLA, THE TOUGH GUY, THE GLOBE TROTTER
                   THE YOUNG MAN AND THE PRINCE OF RETAIL.
                   --------------------------------------
                             A Fairy Tale?

                          by Giorgio Gomelsky


In just ten days, on April 20/21, it'll be the first anniversary of the Escom-
Amiga affair-romance-union-concubinate-marriage-honeymoon (!), you get 
the idea.

	       And how is our "Liebling Amigarella" doing?

	You may ask.  Casting a look over the emotional life so far of our
offbeat friend with all its up and downs, I'm sure some of us can't help
breaking out into a smile, which soon turns into "...a simper, a chorttle,
a chuckle, a giggle, a guffaw, a titter..." (Thanks FinalWriter Thesaurus!),
and finally into a good ol' belly-laugh!
        
	Poor Amigarella, will she ever find  happiness?

	We, her friends, laugh yet are concerned. Just a year ago she was 
not only homeless but also orphaned, abandoned and, alas, not for the first 
time. Over and over again she gets into these nasty tightspots and unhealthy
relationships. Yet, her birth and beginnings were bathed in mirth.
Her biological parents were astonishing people; inventive, cheeky, fearless,
intuitive, friendly and well-informed. Good folks, impelled by an inspired 
Miner, they were so far ahead of the crowd it made the midlle-humans in the 
Valley feel altogether rather uncomfortable: they just couldn't figure out 
what these eccentrics were up to and so refused them access to the country-
club.  But the family didn't care two hoots about that. With consummate faith 
in their offspring, they had cheerfully invested all of their savings in 
trying to give her the best possible education and a good start in life.
	Unfortunately it wasn't to be. Their oddball manner was just too much
for the establishment. Finally they ran short of money and so came face-to-face
with the face (what else?) of ferocious capitalism.  They couldn't look after
her anymore and were obliged to give her up for adoption.
	Amigarella was such a beautiful uniquely gifted child:  bright,
cheerful and resourceful.  Since very early on she was inquisitive,
curious, interested in things.  She needed little attention from grown-ups.
She was too busy playfully discovering the pleasures of life.  She had none
of that greedy capriciousness some kids have.  Her appetite was not for
sweets or toys, but for megabytes, blitters and sprites.  She was cheep to
keep.  She learned to dance, to paint, to compose, to sing, to photograph,
to film and video, to digitize, to animate, to a-rexx and on and on.  She
was a fast learner.
	When word about the adoption got out, 2 candidates foster- parents,
came forward.  Both, somehow incestuously, in the same business and fierce
competitors.  In fact, one of them had worked for the other (or the other 
way round)and there was no love lost between them..  Both knew Amigarella was 
a rich source of delight and satisfaction.  To begin with, the first foster-
parent, The Tough Guy, who was very, very ambitious if not ruthless, got the 
custody. Soon, though, it became very obvious that his real objective, his 
hidden agenda, was that of probing  where Amigarella got her good disposition 
from and then apply it to his own, not so bright children.  Rumours began 
running that Amigarella was slowly wasting away.  Now, the other foster-parent, 
miffed to have lost out in the first place, stepped in.  At the very last 
minute, he managed to snatch her away from the perverse machinations of this 
bad parent. This second foster-parent, The Globe Trotter, was a well-to-do,
middle-aged playboy-type who lived in an aeroplane and whose main motivation
was to trip up his old rival...
	Ah, we all thought, at least our Amigarella would be looked after
and grow up in a safe, clean environment, get the best education and become
a beautiful, intelligent and desirable young lady.  And at first things
looked very auspicious. The Globe Trotter well-to-do Playboy gave her a
wonderful debutante's ball.  Everybody who was somebody in the Valley came
to the party and swooned over her beauty, her playfulness, her quirky humor
and yes, her caring and supportive friends.  We were all so happy for her!
Now we were certain her troubles were over, that she could look forward to
a rich and exciting life and sooner or later, find a worthy husband and have
many bright and healthy children.
	But, very unexpectedly, things began to go wrong.  It turned out that
The Playboy-Globe Trotter had this most annoying habit of taking off in his
plane to distant sunny places, at the drop of a hat and for no precise reasons.
He just never was around when time came for important decisions. An absent
father, he left our friend in the hands of people who neither understood nor
appreciated her unique character and potential.  Slowly, the promise of a
joyful happy life wilted away.  Many of her friends tried to intervene, some
were even working for the Globe-Trotter..But to no avail.  Amigarella got more
and more depressed and forlorn. On certain days she was seen walking around
all dishevelled and scruffy.
	Then, one day, the news came that the Globe-Trotter had blown all
his money on some shady escapade and was going to fire everybody and shut
down all the factories across the world.  Although all of Amigarella's friends
had seen this coming, they were powerless to intervene to save the situation.
Some of them did try, by buying shares in the company and writing many
letters.  But it was too late.  Amigarella would soon be in the street,
homeless and parent-less yet again.  It was downright heart-breaking.
	The Globe-Trotter and his minions took a long time liquidating
their assets. It just went on and on.  Everyday brought more bad news and
more disappointments and there seemed to be no salvation in sight. The
wonderful promises for Amigarella's life were dwindling away at an alar-
ming rate.  What, oh what, would become of her?
	Finally, after what seemed an eternity, the news arrived that
Amigarella would go on the chopping block, offered at an auction to the
highest bidder, like some prize cow.  How humiliating!
	You can imagine how her friends felt!  Endless speculations and
rumors were rekindled.  Who would show up to save her from the clutches of
such a terrible fate?  Someone suggested all her friends dig into their
pockets, raise enough funds to pay the debts and give her a new life.
Perhaps making it possible for her original parents, who knew her so well
and loved her, to come back and look after her.  But no-one really
listened.  They were all too busy moaning and groaning and hoping someone
would show up to save the day.
	When a full year had passed, and after much back and forth, two
suitors appeared on the horizon to rescue our friend from oblivion. One,
a handsome young man from Florida, was well-aware of Amigarella's
gifts and uniqueness and of her many dedicated friends on whom he knew
he could count.  The other, unknown on these  American shores, was what
appeared to be a very self-assured, very ambitious, founder-chairman
whatever of some vast-chain selling computers in far away Germany of
all places:  his name was The Prince Of Retail.
	The suspense was killing.  The Young Man from Florida was very open
about his plans for Amigarella and was often available to speak to her
friends and reassure them of his good intentions.  The Prince Of Retail,
however, was the opposite. Very tight-lipped and secretive he never tried
to get in touch with Amigarella's following and shoot a bit of the breeze.
Again, people all over the world started agitated speculations: this way
and that way, who could, would, do this and that, what was the best for her,
who would love her the most, give her what she needed, who would be more
suitable for her. More and more it looked like everyone was engaged in
frantic match-making, preparing an unforeseen yet inevitable wedding.
Her friends were giving away the bride...
	The day of reckoning came on a beautiful spring morning a year ago
on April 21.  The contending parties had met in a lawyer's office the day
before and put their bids on the table.  More speculations went back and
forth. Most of Amigarella's friends wished The Young Man from Florida would
carry her away.  He seemed to really love her, want her and know how to
cherish and care for her. Alas, in this material world, good intentions are
not enough.  The German Prince of Retail pulled out a few slick legal tricks,
came up with cash on the spot and so laid a binding claim on Amigarella.
It later appeared he had been very manipulative, very determined to take
her back with him to Germany.  She would look fabulous on his arm as they
stepped off the plane.  The Young Man from Florida had lost...
	Of course everybody was very disappointed.  After all who was this
German fellow, why did he pay 10 million dollars to have her by his side,
what was he going to do for her, was there a pre-nuptial agreement, was her
future finally secured, would this union, made almost at gun-point be a
fruitful one?  Many, many questions needed to be answered.  Yet again, a
great uncertainty prevailed...
	For the next few months all of Amigarella's friends started tumoltous
exchanges, new speculations.  They desperately tried to get in touch with
The Prince Of Retail in far away Germany.  One day it looked like the new
groom knew how precious a person his bride was and how to give her back her
luster; then on another day, it was just the opposite.  He gave her the wrong
clothes, hairdo and accessories; she looked lost and confused in that
distant land.  It was risking the ridiculous. No one could find out what
was going to emerge.
	Then, slowly, at least German thoroughness began to show.  Nothing
glamorous, but a precise, bit by bit gathering of all mislaid or lost parts.
But then, the week after, some cranky, incoherent, muddled announcement would
again throw panic among her followers. Up an down, good and bad, in an almost
surreal yo-yo dance between hope and despair. Finally, just a couple of months
ago, all the old parts were put together with some new ones and Amigarella was
taken to a few parties and re-introduced to the world, at least as seen from
distant Germany.  But frankly, it didn't work. Amigarella looked old-fashioned
and stiff, awkward, hemmed-in, she who was always rather forward if not
outrageous.  They gave her things to say that sounded hollow and flat,
like " Back For the Future" and "Forward To The Past" and so on. Worse, they
didn't even reach out to her friends who were all, of course, dying to help
every which way they could.
	 So, the launch didn't meet The Prince Of Retail's and his
partners' expectations.  On top of that he had gone a bit goofy buying
hundreds of stores with nobody in them who knew how to sell whatever they
were retailing.  So, just a few days ago it appeared his partners were
rather unhappy about the big losses incurred in this first year of German
multimedia fever. He had to sell some more of his, now minority, shares
and, of course, in true "matter of honor" German style, resign from the
chairmanship.
	 And now what?  How is this story going to unfold?  The successor
to The Prince Of Retail, used to work for The Globe Trotter. Can you
believe it?  And, sadly, Amigarella's real father, Jay Miner, passed away.
Before resigning, The Prince Of Retail had approved 2 brand new wardrobes
for our Amigarella.  A real hip one which would make her look like a
million dollars, but it would take no less than one full year to bring
it about and the other a very strange getup that some suggested make her
look like a toaster from the 40s....
         What if the worst happens and our Amigarella will find herself aban-
doned once again?  What will her friends feel like then?  And will they be
able to do anything about it this time 'round?? Perhaps they should have 
another look at the idea of dipping into their  pockets for a few dollars, 
marks, rubels, dinars, francs or pounds, say $100 worth, and put it all in 
an emergency chest, just to be on the safe side.  How's that old saying, 
"Once bitten, twice shy"? The Prince Of Retail paid 10 millions dollars for 
her. If 100,000 friends put up $100 each they could make certain Amigarella 
will not get homeless again.

The alternative is just too grim to ponder. Poor Amigarella!

New York, April 10, 1996





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