Nearly every picture on this web site is a link. Try them!
It's gotten very lonely here.
We're very glad you've come.
Anything new with you?
Special prizes for people able to dig up old Jos pictures!
(Site maintained by Jos' dad, Jon Claerbout, claerbout AT stanford DOT edu.)
The Toessel Tree has disappeared. Microsoft demolished the entire
campus of five 19 year old buildings,
and plans to replace the entire campus by one giant building.
Not much of Jos this year, but
a little article
from a charity he'd likely be supporting
were he alive today.
This article is undated, but was likely a year or so after his passing.
new baby born to Jos' college friend Abby Paske is named for Jos.
Hooray for Julia!
An email was received from
with many, many details of his (mostly first two) college years with Jos.
Padgett pulls an old Jos memory from the back of Dad's mind. Here it is:
"The Jos Claerbout Center for Worldwide Shenanigans".
Jos decided that this "Center" would be a tax-exempt
Who would be funding this charitable organization he never quite revealed,
although it did occur to me that were I to fund it,
I would be paying for his shenanigans with tax-free dollars.
I would never have considered that at the time,
but in retrospect of the following years of his life, I'm not so sure.
Tragic news: We have just received word that Jos's dear friend,
has also passed into the great silence.
What few details we know
What an amazing person she was!
Another star in our firmament has blinked out.
I made an
audio recording of Rosemary
promoting her Afghanistan charities.
Besides enjoying her cheery voice exuding her positive can-do attitude,
you get to find out what is really going on in Afghanistan.
Rosey could speak better off-the-cuff than I can write (even after many revisions).
A few fragments of Jos memories dug from ten year old condolence notes.
"I'd phone for his mother but what I remember is
him speaking on the phone with me with various foreign accents."
Bill Symes: "I remember Jos gently warning Matt Schwab
away from my office last summer, telling Matt that he had
to quit talking to me and get on with his thesis."
Cousin Hazel (Claerbout) VandeWall:
"I recalled how quickly he got all the ancestral family pictures
and information on the internet."
[Dad says: Jos had insisted on making a trip to Milwaukee
to purchase a scanner and doing so even though
the only one available had the old-style computer connection.]
He was one of the most creative, witty, and irrepressible young men
I have ever known.
He had a wonderful ability to charm people no matter what their age
and always seemed older and more capable than his years.
One of my fondest memories of him was about 4th grade --
he wanted to be a psychiatrist.
In his senior year, Jos' roommate Chris McCamick made a 60 minute
movie in which a
14 minute section
features bald Jos
in the role of an evil professor
(who meets a deserving end).
Here is a plaque
that appears in Mexico in a library
in a remote location habited by
Matt Schwab recalls,
"Jos and I were watching a Jacky Chan movie in an empty theater.
There was one more person in the entire cinema --
so Jos went over and introduced himself at the top of his lungs
from one "Chacky Chan" to another.
Dredging through the family album two pictures turn up.
Between fishing jobs
and at the end of the summer
he was a volunteer
KBBI radio station in Homer,
shown left with Mums and a KBBI coffee cup.
The picture on the right comes from his brother's wedding,
but it seemed to fit with a
fabulous WebTV story without a picture
(only two months later)
that's where it is.
Another photo surfaces:
Jos meets his brother's baby, Hanna.
I found a lullaby that went perfectly with this picture
so I went to a web site to tell me how to add music to a web page.
The first thing they said was,
Most people get annoyed when they find music on a web page!
I did it anyway.
It is here.
The music lasts only about two minutes.
You might like it.
We uncover a missing picture of Jos. In March 1996 we drove from his college
to sightseeing in the west including Las Vegas,
the location of this water slide.
As you have come to this lonesome place, I'll
reward you with a hither untold Jos story:
He went to work at WebTV in the early days of the web which
was a hotbed of tech and semitech information.
On the water slide at Disneyland,
young ladies would sit in front of their boyfriends.
Just before the picture was taken
the rash young man would momentarily lift the young lady's blouse
flashing the camera.
Disneyland being Disneyland, such pictures were not put on display
for sale, instead they collected in a drawer behind the counter -- until
a prankster put the whole collection
on the web!!
Of course us guys each had to pick our favorites :-)
We receive a
PowerPoint version of Jos's OOP tutorial
from one of its admirers Pierre Dagher.
"Within my department,
we organize a monthly get-together during lunch where one of us presents a work related topic.
I have been asked lately to explain what Object Oriented Programming is to a bunch of people coming from all kinds of backgrounds:
junior and senior conventional and OO programmers,
non-programmers and managers.
I found the task quite impossible until I came across your son Jos's tutorial.
I re-edited his excellent work to fit into a PowerPoint presentation.
I presented it yesterday to a delighted audience,
they all enjoyed it tremendously with no exception."
Jos's parents, Diane and Jon(me),
travel to Alaska and meet some of Jos's old friends,
Ralf und Marrianne,
who were all kind, thoughtful, and dear.
We learn that Jos's college buddy,
has become the
National Spokesman for the Democratic Party!!
Before this we couldn't guess where Jos would have gone.
Now, we can guess that with
his interest in American Culture Wars,
with his love of writing,
and with his Jano Cabrera connection,
he might today be researching and writing speeches --
warm speeches that would entertain and would inform.
Jano wrote of Jos the wonderful story,
Moist and Fresh.
Checking the web accounting I discover that Jos has acquired some new
and different fans.
to hear him speak about the evil effects of alcohol.
We have received word that a 45' container of
500 used bicycles, 318 boxes of parts, and 17 sewing machines
is on a container ship on its way to Latin America.
Jos's spirit is there with it
undoubtedly with new adventures every day.
Perhaps to remain anonymous but more likely in the spirit
of silliness that preceded the dot.com bust,
Jos registered some web domain names under
the name of "Jose Caribou".
In the land rush to register domain names,
there was a rumor that he had cooked up a raunchy name
for potential use in the "adult entertainment industry".
He likely did, but the bills come here
and no such bill ever arrived.
[Dad tells more.]
Jano Cabrera writes,
"The People's Guide to Mexico,
Carl Franz's definitive and irreverant tome on traveling through my home country, Jos let me borrow this guide the first year we met in college.
He didn't so much as lend it as much as he pitched it, preached about it, proselytized.
It was almost as if he had written it himself.
It had a certain flair, a different way of looking at life."
We took a few pictures
at the trail head.
Joel recalled that Jos had had an
ordinary day which Jos recounted to Joel as a
wonderful day, a day filled with many adventures.
Jan Lieberman (librarian, story-teller) recalls (Fall 2000)
that his goal in life seemed to be to make everyone he met
feel so good about themselves that they believed
their dreams could be realized
Next to The Interfaith Alliance office where we worked
was another office with people
who were in charge of Metro Bus advertisements.
Jos referred to this (all female staff) as the Tall Lovely Ladies,
and would greet them as such (to their delight) every day.
Jos reminded us how rare tall women are and
that it was absolutely necessary to show the proper appreciation.
We ended up getting a number of fine
Metro-Bus Station signs for decoration in our office, our homes, etc.
in return for his warm relations with them --
we who never took the time to talk to them before Jos's arrival.
Michael Cooke writes,
"I used to work with Jos. He used to call me "Professor"
when he had a question for me.
I'm a jazz musician. I just finished a new CD.
One of the songs I wrote and perform on the CD
is about the day Jos left us.
I thought you might be interested in hearing it."
An amazing high school picture showed up of
Jos and Larry Flechner.
Be sure to click on the pic to see an enlargment
with even more chicks.
We hope to find out the names of some of these people.
Lauren Half (Warren) writes,
"I went to Gunn high school with Jeremy
I can't quite remember why, but for some reason I called him "Q" and
he called me "P". You had to yell it across the quad, though--
You might also wish to know that my wife Charlene is to have
a baby late in April (2001).
If its a boy we'll be naming him Johannes after Jos,''
writes Roy Speckhardt,
``I know Jos told me about the origins of the She's Alive! but ...''
is the most beautiful 40 year old woman in Palo Alto,' he said.
Of course, I loved it!
How could a 24 year old come up with that?-- and why would he?
I'll never forget it.
Even now, Jos is
particularly when I laugh at something
quirky or outrageous."
"Jeremy loved the chaos and hysteria of mosh pits.
He nearly worshipped his steel-toed Doc Marten boots
that saved his big toes from being trampled on many moshing occasions.
He even persuaded me to buy a pair of 'rugged shit-kickers'
as he called them.
We would emerge from the crowds with limbs
bruised and faces nearly bloodied,
but our feet were fine,
save a blister or two."
"As I think back on this last time I saw Jos, I am
awestruck. In just a few hours, he had taught me so
much -- purely through his example -- and forced me to
reflect on my life and choices,"
writes Layne M o s l e r.
Jos with an unknown young lady (thought to be from Pomona College)
at a WebTV party.
If you know who she is, please send email to claerbout @ stanford . edu
To enlarge the pic, click on it.
By digging deeper into our webserver accounting files I
discovered a "silent majority". Outnumbering
the knitters and webscissors people are Jos's OOP
tutorial readers. In these first 8 days of February,
690 people read the first page of
his OOP tutorial
and 156 of them made it all the way to the 12th page.
I improved the accounting and
retold the story.
I learn that you should now be able to see Fear of a Black Toessel
streaming over the web.
Follow this path.
Knitters! The long lost
Fall '98 Preview
has been found and fully restored.
There Yossel tells us how he learned to crochet,
a skill that ultimately led to
"It took a young Rastafarian on
Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley to teach
me the error of my ways. This man,
Roosevelt by name, had a new deal of
his own: he could sell hand-crafted hats
for only ten dollars - because he could
make one in only a half hour. Watching
his skilled hand work faster than I could
think, I was intrigued."
Yet another new ending for the
A new pic of Jos there.
Arrival of the webscissors community
to Jos and his webscissors.
Also added a memory from a
secret admirer Beth
gift to the webscissors community.
Added memories of cousins
Added memories of
including a good picture.
Lisa Lee got her toessel
by trading Jos for
an original painting
of special interest to knitters.
She also tells a "silly putty" story on Jos.
Jos loved his job at the
WebTV developer site.
It is now described in great detail including
articles he wrote and his participation at forums.
His business card.
Home baked cookies.
His patented color picker tool.