So we knew he was a brilliant guitarist, and that he could
sing and write a mean song when he collaborated with Robert Hunter. And we also
knew that he dabbled in art, some of which he created with, as we were once
told, "a computer." But it was only yesterday, thanks to an article in the
L. A. Times by Stephen M. H. Braitman, that we learned that Jerry Garcia
was a geek. Actually, it was even more of a surprise to Mr. Braitman, who ended
up talking to the late leader of the Grateful Dead's wife Deborah at the Garcia
home in the course of researching a newspaper article on the book,
Harrington Street which was written and illustrated by Garcia.
Harrington Street is about Garcia's childhood. The most interesting info
comes near the end of the article. "...and it was a revelation to me that this
Deadhead icon, this Merry Prankster, this Mr. Natural visionary, was such a
tech-head. That is, he reveled in computers and the brave new world of
technology.... 'He always liked the latest and best toys,' said Deborah Garcia.
'...He had one of the very first computers that Apple did, and he kept updating
it. A more powerful computer would come along and he would get
Braitman is then shown the room where Garcia worked. "And there I
was looking at Jerry's nerve center. A Power PC 8100/80. Next to it was a Wacom
tablet and scanner, which allowed him to draw images freeform and scan them
directly into the computer. A Painter program gave him the palette to bathe the
book in color.
"I laughed a small laugh to myself. There it was: Jerry