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alt.callahans is a Usenet newsgroup loosely based on Callahan's Crosstime Saloon, the bar featured in the Callahan stories by Spider Robinson.

Although the group bases many of its traditions and practices on the series, it is not a traditional fan group. Instead it is a virtual bar, with the users being known as "patrons". Discussions are wide-ranging, with virtually nothing other than spam (and to some extent flames) being considered off-topic. Some users post as a character, complete with adopted mannerisms and supporting descriptions. Very occasionally Spider Robinson himself posts.

An important aspect of the group, discouraging leading questions on aspects of real-life personal topics, mirrors the nature of the fictional bar.

In addition to the general discussion is a long-running multi-authored roleplay/story. These posts are generally distinguished by having AAE or U.N.C.L.E. as the first part of the subject, though there are original inventions, such as the Bunnies, a group of uplifted hares who were given Republican Roman culture. (See the Bjarni War, 1999, and the Russian Gold Affair.)

The equivalent of the FAQs of other newsgroups are the Admin: posts, particularly the allabout.


  • "Shared pain is diminished, shared joy is increased"
  • Puns and shaggy dog stories
  • "Drinks are on me" resulting in virtual wetness
  • Toasts, ending with the smashing of glasses in the fireplace

External links

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