Reprinting the entire semi-regular feature from SPLICE: The TITAN-RAINBOW Newsletter
(circa 1984 - 1991)

"I feel it behooves me to share my film knowledge with the less intelligent, therefore, BETEL's Corner is devoted to answering inquiries from young, eager, filmmakers. Your letter may be chosen for publication; just don't ask any dumb questions."
Signed: Mister Betel

From TI-COM Vol 1/Issue 2 (May/June 1984)

Dear Mister BETEL:
I need help. I recently spent all of my savings on a Canon 514 XL-S sound camera. I was looking forward to filming a great many things when I realized that I couldn't afford any film in which to put inside it.
Signed: Hopelessly Underdeveloped

Dear Underdeveloped:
You're not kidding about needing help. You ended a sentence with a propositional phrase. That's an unpardonable sin in my book. I suggest you take the camera back and spend your money on some English lessons. When you're better able, write me again.
Signed: Mister Betel

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Dear Earthling BETEL:
I am an interstellar anthropoligist. I recently used all of my savings to buy a brodrigger multi-transducer, trimensional optic, hyperphotonic camera with a semi-mirco, relay override receptor and optional multi-plane, super electro-focus disc. These cameras take the best 3-D photographs in the galaxy. I bought it on sale so it is non-returnable. I just received my assignment to go to Vot Voddle 12. Unfortunately, the inhabitants of this planet are only 2 dimensional beings. Please advise.
Signed: Beldar of Gamma Regula 7

Dear Beldar:
Oh, la-dee-da. Don't you know a lot of big words. I suggest that you do the universe a favor. Stick your head in a time portal and flip the switch.
Signed: Mister Betel

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From TI-COM Vol 1/Issue 3 (July 1984)

Dear Mister BETEL:
I'm having trouble getting a foot in the moviemaking door. It seems that before you are allowed to produce a film you must have a reputation as a good producer of movies. How do I get the film community to give me a chance?
Signed: Man without a Studio

Dear Studioless:
You must get producers to notice you. You can do this in several ways, but I suggest you gain 200 pounds and stand in front of the National Film Board offices completely naked. I guarantee they will notice. How do you think I got this column?
Signed: Your's nakedly,
Mister Betel

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Dear Mister Betel:
I've just lost the will to live. I am humbled before your moviemaking greatness. You are so far above me that I realize my films should line the bottoms of bird cages when compared to yours. Please! I beg of you. Stop making such great films. Give us lesser filmmakers a chance.
Signed: Your's Worshipfully,
Totally Inept Spielberg

Dear Totally Inept:
What can I say? Some guys got it and some guys don't.
Signed: Yours All-powerful,
Mister Betel

*** The publishers of this newsletter wish to make clear that they cannot vouch for the authenticity of any letters received by Mister Betel ***

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From TI-COM Vol 1/Issue 4 (August 1984)

Dear Mister BETEL:
Last month, while I was waiting for a bus, my hat blew off and, as I chased it, I was hit by a moped and broke 17 bones in my body. Soon after, I was replaced at work by a robot named Bill Tronic. My dog ran away and my parrot poked me in the eye. My $10,000 tropical fish died in an attempt to stop a fire in my apartment. My doctor told me that I have 11 and a half months to live. My eyebrows fell out when my digital watch broke open, exposing me to radium. I know this is not up your alley, but I don't know where else to turn. Please hurry, I'm going fast.
At Wits End

Dear Wit:
You think you've got problems. Last week, I saw a cloud that looked just like Abe Vigoda. By the time I had set up my camera to take a picture of it, the wind had blown it around and it looked like a penguin wearing a fedora. I couldn't take a picture of a penguin wearing a hat. The National Film Board would laugh at me. You can't imagine how frustrating it all is. Don't bother me with your petty whining.
Terribly Annoyed at You,
Mister Betel

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From TI-COM Vol 2/Issue 1 (FALL 1984)

Dear BETEL Person:
I just received my copy of Issue Two and MY GOD!! Parts of some of the letters are missing. Is this a plot? Or maybe...YES!! Something is wrong. It was an omen. I'm probably the only one to receive a faulty copy. It must have been delivered by an assasin who killed the mailman earlier. Oh no, this is it. I'm going to die. I'm getting out of here. I wanna live, I wanna live!! (Whrrrr) Argh!!!
One Panicky Guy

Dear Panicky:
Don't Panic. I can help you. I will give you another copy of Ti-Com Issue Two in its entirety. Be at the corner of 3 Road and Williams at midnight. My assistant will give you a new Ti-Com. Don't panic, he's a very trusted assistant. Just so he knows that its you, you must recite a set of passwords to him. The passwords are: "I love to make movies. I want to make movies with you. I want to film on a different location every day and I'm going to be constantly on your back to finish your films on time, but you're going to love every tortuous moment of it". He'll give it to you then.
Yours Evil Plottingly,
Mister Betel

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Dear Mister BETEL:
I can't take it anymore!!! Filming is not my bag. I've got this producer on my back. Locations are killing me. I've bought a gun and I'm gonna' kill the whole lot. Can you suggest what I may use a a defence statement in court?
Pushed to the Limit

Dear Limit:
Don't be too hasty. It is not necessary to kill the entire production staff. Be at the corner of 3 Road and Williams at midnight. I have sent a man who will be of great help to you in your time of mental anguish.
Yours Extremely Evil Plottingly,
Mister Betel

PS--Bring your gun, just in case. Heh, heh, heh....

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TO: Mister BETEL:
FROM: The TI-COM Board of Publishers
RE: Your Corner
Dear Mister Betel:
As you are probably aware TI-COM has run into financial difficulties, it has therefore been necessary to adapt a quartely format instead of the incredibly difficult bi-monthly format. With Ti-Com's new (and more economical) expansion (looking on the bright side as usual) shall come the adoption of a third letter per issue of "BETEL'S CORNER" (Beginning with Vol 2/No2). Please note this and begin your own expansion immediately.
We anxiously await your reply.
Sincerely, AT THE TOP
PS--You may include this letter with your next issue; if you like.

Dear Top of the Heap:
Look carefully. Does a big red "S" appear anywhere on my body? I left my blue tights and red cape at the dry cleaners. My X-Ray vision hasn't been quite up to par.
I bust my light meter bringing razor sharp wit to an otherwise comatose-inducing newsletter. Do I get a 'thank-you', a "your worship we appreciate greatness whenever we can get it"? No! All I get are demands to pull your financial fat out of the economic fire.
With TI-COM's new expansion (looking on the bright side; contrary to the usual) comes another expansion...
...My paycheque. Expanded by 33.3 percent or you don't see squat from me for Issue 3!
Yours, teetering-on-the-Brink-
Mister Betel

PS--This is the first installment of my third letter.

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From TI-COM Vol 2/Issue 2 (WINTER 1984)

Like, Dear fascist Betel, man:
Like, bummer, ya know? Ever since I've been reading your column I've had to do, like, heavy mediating for an hour just to pull my consciousness out of a primary downer. I mean, like wow., you really give off some negative vibes, ya know. If you don't start cultivating some positive energies soon your secondary aura may become permanently deformed by a major karmic backlash. I suggest some serious sensory deprivation to bring your body segments back into spiritual realignment.
Like, yours spiritually
Star Child Aquarius
PS--Like, can I borrow 200 bucks for a telephoto lens I've had my eye on?

Dear Aquarius:
Like, I think your senses have already been deprived for too long. Come to my house one day and I'll give you enough negative vibes to curl your alfalfa sprouts and throw your body segments permanently out of alignment.
Guru Betel

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Dear Miss Manners:
Recently I was at a posh restaurant eating buritos and refried beans. As I ate, a hair fell from my head and into my refried beans. I could not decide whether to just discreetly eat the hair along with the food, or simply dig my fingers in and pull it out. It was a dilemma. Eventually I pretended it was someone else's hair, called the waiter over, and asked him what this hair was doing in my refried beans. He said it looked like the back-stroke. I said that that did not make any sense and left the restaurant. I don't think I handled the whole situation very well. What should I have done?
Signed: Mexican Hairless

Dear MH:
You should eat the hair, eat the waiter, leave the refried beans and check your address book again for the proper address.
Sick and Tired of Imbecils,
Mannerly Betel

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Dear Mister Betel:
After I wrote a letter to Miss Manners, I realized that I sent it to you by mistake. I am aware that you only answer questions of a photographic nature, therefore everytime you read the word "hair" in my previous letter, replace it with "Nikon GE with bayonette lens mount". What would you have done?
Signed: Erroneous Mexican Hairless

Dear MH again:
You're still way off base. I only answer questions from lifeforms of a Homo Sapien nature.
Don't Bother Me Again-ly,
Mister Betel

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From TI-COM Vol 7 (as an ANNUAL Magazine) (JANUARY 1987)

Dear Mister Betel,
I've been trying to write something for TI-COM, but I just don't have the time. My friends call, or I have to work, or I've gotta eat (Something I do quite often), or I have to ....[edited for space]... anyway, you'll probably edit out the middle of this long letter and replace my heart-spill with some dots or something. Please tell me how I can find the time to compose a good story.
Signed: Short on Time

Dear Short:
Golly, just knowing that I could be of some tiny help to an aspiring author gives me goose bumps all over. I'm not sure I'm up to the task, but here goes. Making time is a complex task, but it can be done if one is willing to make the effort. First, one needs 8 atomic clocks which should be placed at the 8 corners of your room. These must be coupled, in parallel, to a 400 MeV Brownian motion inducer, which, in turn, must be synchronised to a neutron pulse emitter set at 5.790 GeV. This requires a medium sized CANDU reactor or several megawatt hydro-electric dams.
Here comes the hard part. You must place 5 sodium ions, equidistant and in a perfect pentagon, in a magnetic field which has no differences in flux density throughout the entire field. Don't touch the ion to the casing or else your nearest sensory organ will do backflips into an opposing time line.
All that is needed now is a generous supply of anti-matter to allow for expansion into neighbouring parallel universes. Anti-Platinum is best, but Anti-Uranium will do in a pinch. Your room is now a time free zone. You may enter the region and type until you are blue in the face, but when you leave the region and enter the normal time/space continuum, you'll find that you've only taken about one tenth of a micro-second. Happy writing.
Yours Timelessly,
Mister Betel

PS--If you meet Beldar of Gamma Regula 7 in a time portal tell him I said "get lost".

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From TI-COM 10 (JANUARY 1991)

Dear Publisher:
We have our arch-nemesis Mister Betel in our custody. If you wish to see him alive again you must place ten thousand and one dollars in unmarked bills to a location to be named later. Please place your response on an 8 1/2 by 11 sheet of white paper taped to the power pole at the corner of No 3 Road and Williams before December 10, 1990.
Pal of Mine Liberation Army

Dear Pal:
TI-COM 10 is the last scheduled issue of TI-COM as the budget for publications has been cut due to slipping readership. In fact once we find two other letters to Mister Betel we won't need him anymore. As such what you do with him is your concern.
Mister Betel's Publisher

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Dear Mister Betel's Publisher:
This is terrible. We had no idea readership had sunk to such low levels. We are not unreasonable. You may have your Mister Betel back if you put a mere one thousand dollars in a reusable white mylar envelope which will then be duct taped to the underside of the red mailbox at the corner of No 3 Road and Williams by 10:pm December 21, 1990.
Most Concerned for the state of
Canada's Publishing Industry,
Pal of Mine Liberation Army
POMLA for short

Dear POMLA for short:
Maybe we didn't make ourselves clear last letter. We don't have the money for him. In fact we've already rented out his office. Once we get one more letter we're done with this column. Keep him.
Mister Betel's Publisher

PS--Good luck with the whole liberation thing.

* * * * * *

Dear Buddy o' pal of mine:
Come on! I need your help here! They're threatening to kill me if you don't fork over at least a few Canadian Tire dollars! For an old friend, huh? Please? I'll work for free doing anything, even toner cartridge replacement on the photocopier, heck, I'll even copy whatever you need out by hand if that'll seal this. I'm begging you here. Give them something.
Soon to become Fish Food
if you don't throw me
a fricking' lifeline,
Your loyal,
humble and obediant servant,
Mister Betel

Dear Mister Betel c/o Pal of Mine Liberation Army:
Enclosed is your Record of Employment form you'll need for applying for UI payments. Unfortunately we see that due to your recent absense you will fall short of eligability to collect anything. We thank you for completing your contractual 3 letter per issue submission requirement before deadline and we are confident that you will find work elsewhere in the industry.
Wishing you all the best,
Amy Tan,
Administrative Assistant
to the TI-COM Publisher

* * * * * *

Dear You-Miserable-Cheap-Bastards!:
I hope you all rot in hell! See you there!
Akmed Bell El Abatois,

Camel Jockey's Assistant 3rd class
{Formerly Mister Betel}

For some reason we haven't heard from Mister Betel since.
---TI-COM Publisher (January 2000)

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