Name: Randy Fellmy
Internet name: Coises
The real “Coises!” was a black Persian cat who came to live with Carol and me in January of 1991, just a couple months after he was born. We invented his name imagining Curly from The Three Stooges exclaiming, “Curses!” (foiled again) like Snidely Whiplash. Seven and a half years later, when I first gained access to the Internet by signing up for a free month with AOL, it was the first screen name I thought of that wasn’t already taken.
Born: January 6th, 1958, Indianapolis, IN, 1:28 am Central Standard Time
Natal Horoscope: Sun: Capricorn (3rd); Moon: Cancer (9th); Ascendant: Scorpio; Neptune (1st) and Jupiter (12th) conjunct and rising
Genetic: probably British and Greek (Riggs and Kakavecos)
Cultural: pure midwestern American (raised in a Chicago suburb by parents from rural Indiana)
Other places: Facebook • YouTube • Elsewhere
I was born in Indianapolis, Indiana, the eighth child of a couple who were separated. Another couple who knew my birth mother and were unable to have children of their own adopted me when I was six months old; they are the people I knew as Mom and Dad. I haven’t yet met anyone from my birth family in person, but some of my siblings and other relatives are now among my Facebook friends.
I was raised an only child, with a more-or-less happy and not particularly eventful childhood. When I was three years old we moved to Bensenville, Illionis where I attended Mohawk Elementary School, Blackhawk Junior High School and Fenton Senior High School.
When I was around nine or ten, my parents bought a piano and had me begin lessons with an adorable older lady named Mrs. Kern. I had no idea why they did that, but I loved it... and I’ll always remember Mrs. Kern as understanding that the love of music was the most important thing she could teach; technique is worthless if the student loses the desire to use it. So I didn’t become a great pianist, but nothing I’ve learned in my life has brought me more joy than the grasp of music I gained while studying piano. I soon developed an interest in singing, as well; I got into every choral group I could in Junior High and High School. I also played clarinet in the band for a while.
All that music, plus a bit of summer school, got me enough credits to graduate High School with the class of 1975, though I would otherwise have been in the class of 1976.
I continued to sing in the choir at the University of Illinois at Chicago. I knew, though, that I wasn’t prepared to try to make a life in music. I also discovered that I wasn’t cut out to be an engineer (my original major), but I turned out to be a natural at computer programming. That was when a computer filled an entire air-conditioned room; in my first computer class we keypunched cards.
I also knew by then that I wasn’t a Christian. I didn’t know what I was ... but at least I had a better idea of the scope of the “God” question when you consider the whole range of human thought and not just one self-validating fragment of it.
I graduated from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 1979 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Math and Computer Science.
I moved out of my parents’ house, got an apartment in the Rogers Park neighborhood of Chicago, and went to work programming IBM mainframe computers—mostly BAL and PL/1 under MVS/370.
I met Carol in 1980; after a couple years we got around to falling in love, and we shared our various homes in Chicago, Venice, Austin and Pittsburgh from 1982 until her death in 1993. She was 11 years older than I: an intelligent, beautiful Aquarian and a limitless source of warmth, inspiration, education and anarchy.
In the summer of 1992 I was diagnosed with Systemic Lupus Erythematosus.
I’m not going into all the details, but 1990 through the first half of 1993 were a big ol’ slice of hell. By April of 1993 my lover was dead; I was no longer working, disabled with a chronic, incurable auto-immune disease; my father had also died, and circumstances were such that I wasn’t told until over a month later; and I lived in a town (Pittsburgh) where I knew no one except Carol’s parents and a couple of her friends (friendships that did not transfer to me).
But it was around the time I became ill that I began to try my hand at songwriting. I lived alone, in Pittsburgh, from April of 1993 until April of 1999, and worked on learning to use MIDI and simple home recording studio equipment. I learned a lot, and did some writing and recording. I also rediscovered computers, this time in the form of a personal computer and, later, an Internet connection.
In 1999 I moved to Chandler, Arizona (a suburb of Phoenix) to live with my best friend, DJ, whom I’ve known and loved since 1980. We have lived together for most of the time since. It’s hard to imagine where I would be now without her strength and support.
From mid-2007 through mid-2010 we lived in Costa Rica. The reasons DJ relocated are her story to tell; I moved because I was invited... and I couldn’t think of a single good reason not to take advantage of the chance to go. After returning to the United States, we lived in the Summerlin South section of Las Vegas until July of 2015, when we moved to Maricopa, Arizona.
Sex, Religion and Politics
Sex: male heterosexual
Religion: Nope. “Atheist” is a little too strong, “agnostic” is a little too weak... maybe just this.
Politics: The closest designation I can find is Libertarian Socialist. However, I suspect that politics is inherently incapable of producing satisfactory solutions to most of our problems. I expect little real progress in human society until we develop something—and I don’t know what that could be—that renders politics as we know it irrelevant.
|1958-1961||Indianapolis, IN||with parents|
|1961-1979||Bensenville, IL||with parents|
|1982-1984||Chicago, IL||with Carol|
|1984-1990||Venice, CA||with Carol|
|1990||Austin, TX||with Carol|
|1990-1993||Pittsburgh, PA||with Carol|
|1999-2003||Chandler, AZ||with DJ|
|2003-2004||Mesa, AZ||alone and with DJ|
|2004-2007||Hidden Valley, near Maricopa, AZ||with DJ|
|2007-2008||San Rafael, Escazú, Costa Rica||with DJ|
|2008||San Antonio, Escazú, Costa Rica||with DJ|
|2008||Herédia, Costa Rica||with Manuel, Patricía, Andrea and Daniel|
|2008||Bello Horizonte, Escazú, Costa Rica||with DJ|
|2008-2010||Rohrmoser, Pavas, San José, Costa Rica||alone|
|2010-2015||Summerlin South, Las Vegas, NV||with DJ|
|2015+||Maricopa, AZ||with DJ|
Quinn (the Eskimo), who was my friend since February of 1993, was put to sleep on May 17th, 2001. Bobby, DJ’s male orange tabby shorthaired cat, probably born in the fall of 1993, whom she saved from drowning after someone stuffed him in a garbage bag and threw him in the river, died of unknown causes on May 2nd, 2002. Nicky, a female African Grey parrot born July 12th, 1993 who used to live with us now resides in a parrot sanctuary, where she can fly freely and has made friends with others of her species. Coises!, a black male Persian cat who was born in November of 1990 and from whom I took my Internet name, was put to sleep on June 3rd, 2005. Basil and Oliver, feline brothers born around February 14th, 2002, are no longer with us: Oliver went for a walk in the fall of 2006 and did not return, and Basil stayed with some other cat-lovers when we left Arizona. Boss, a male Rottweiler born May 30, 2006, went back to his breeder on March 11th, 2007. Mack “the Knife” Heath, a male Rottweiler born November 16th, 1998, lived with DJ until his death on March 9th, 2010. Charlie, an orange tabby cat born in January of 2003, stayed with DJ and I until July of 2010. Coconut Joe, a male Rhodesian Ridgeback / Terrier mix who was born on June 4th, 2004, came to live with us later that year and traveled with us to Costa Rica, Las Vegas and Maricopa, Arizona, was put to sleep on April 11th, 2016.
Dexter, a Turkish Van who was probably born in 2008 or 2009; Buddy, a mix of (we think) Dachshund and Beagle probably born in 2010, whom we adopted on January 30th, 2012; and Kid Karla, a mix of Pit Bull and (we think) Rottweiler probably born in January of 2014, whom we adopted on June 16th, 2016, live with us now.