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hs83150.jpgbuy prints of select halfsquatch photographs at etsy or dawanda. (prints of all photographs are available upon request) day 83

Aaron and Devin decided that Rebecca should have a website. It was nothing elaborate, just a place for her to keep an online diary.

Within days, halfsquatch.com was receiving tens of thousands of hits. Rebecca got hundreds of questions and pledges of support. Some people sent money to the online account Aaron had set up for donations to cover expenses, namely his legal fees and to pay Devin as her self-appointed manager.

Rebecca spent hours exchanging notes with her supporters. Aaron and Devin vetted every diary entry before it went up, as well as all of Rebecca’s correspondence. They didn’t let her see any e-mail that was negative or sexual – or anything from Dave Thompson, who e-mailed her several times each day.

Rebecca was delighted with her swelling number of newfound friends. She was particularly flattered by the teenage girls – most were younger than her – who sent poetry and scans of drawings they’d done. They asked for her advice on goth doll makeovers, on family problems, about sex.

She also used the diary to chronicle her research. She’d immersed herself in the materials Aaron and his cohorts had gathered. She read old native legends about the Sasquatch and first-hand accounts of sightings from Sasquatch investigators. She pored over photographs and watched documentaries. She was taken aback by Hollywood’s ignorance concerning the way her people were portrayed in films and on television. If they’re people? Are they people? The questions nagged her.

She examined the bootlegged DVD of The Six Million Dollar Man two-parter that a Halfsquatch fan had burned and sent to her that she hadn’t yet watched. She fed the disc into the computer. She giggled through the dated opening credits. She crunched on organic corn chips. She turned the volume up.

“What’s that?” Devin asked, as he walked into the room, followed by Aaron.

“Some Bigfoot episode of an old TV show,” Rebecca said.

“The Six Million Dollar Man,” Aaron said. “Yeah, that came today. I remember that one from when I was a kid.”

Devin leaned in over Rebecca’s shoulder and stopped the disc from playing. Abruptly, he ejected it from the computer. “Do you think she should be watching this kind of thing?” he said to Aaron.

“Whoa, man. Take it easy. It’s just a silly TV show – it’s harmless,” Aaron said.

“Is it?” Devin challenged.

“It’s okay, Devin,” Rebecca said.

“It’s not going to help. You’re not going to learn anything real from watching trash like this. All it does is reinforce stereotypes. Isn’t that what we’re trying to fight, here?”

Rebecca looked to Aaron. She’d never known Devin to be so touchy.

“We can talk about this later. Right now we need to concentrate on building the momentum,” Aaron said. “The shopping was great. The website is great. Now we need to get you out there — in the public, with the people, in a bigger way.”

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                                                                                                                                                          ©2008 pamela klaffke