Lesson 7 - Anagrammatically Correct
This is an ongoing series to dissect the PhreakNIC v3.0 code, which
seen at http://www.phreaknic.org/phreaknic.txt
I don't quite know how to break this to you, so I'll just get right
The 9-line poem in the PhreakNIC Code contains a bunch of anagrams.
And most of them are completely useless red herrings.
Hey! It's not my fault! Ya wanna blame somebody, blame
JonnyX. He's the
one that wrote it. But we're in his head, so he has to endure us tromping
around in there for a bit longer. Muddy boots and graffiti encouraged. :)
Anyway, here's the poem, with 8 of the 9 anagrams filled in:
The earnes[t][se]crets sho(n)e.
--> These sentences are short.
(O)ne hears sat[i]re. --> There is a reason.
Ahem - r(e)ally rag Satan. --> They are all anagrams.
(A)(T)M of Hel(l). --> All of them.
Evil nos[e]energy. --> Every single one.
O, the (C)IA net lunacy. --> They contain a clue.
Obey luser ca[m]. --> Or maybe clues.
P[h]one far-fe[t]ched[r]oot text[.] --> For the next part of the code.
A data-[l]in[k] g[r](u)mbles on the cloud(.) --> ??
The ninth line, I'll tell you right now, is another red herring.
I know what
it is, but I'm not going to repeat it here, because it's (mildly) obscene.
Think of it as a JonnyX "signature."
Anyone who really wants to know what it says, well, you can solve
yourself, or wait until someone else divulges it. If you understand the
origin of the phrase, you may find the solution amusing. If not, you'll
scratch your head and it'll just look like more gibberish, about as
understandable as the stuff that's still scrambled.
In order to recognize the reference, you'd probably need to be steeped
se2600 culture, or listen (religiously, heh) to Pope JonnyX's radio webcast
"91 Noise" on wrvu.org on Saturday nights. You might also figure it out if
you're a comic-book aficionado, or a fan of Hong Kong action movies. Probably
the most likely way you'd get it is if you're the kind of person who enjoys
reading obscure English subtitles in movies such as "Full Contact".
Basically, it includes a phrase that JonnyX has used occasionally, as one
that's both impolite and yet still legal to say on the airwaves.
In any case, you don't need to solve that line to continue, so we're
skip it and go on. If anyone else can figure it out based on the hints I
gave above though, feel free to share. :P
Moving right along, after we've handled the basic anagrams, we're
with the highlighted letters in the poem:
: t se i e m h t r . l k r
(): n O e A T l C u .
- Each of the two sets of letters is a separate anagram.
- One is *another* red herring, but solvable. (When I did solve it, I
believe my exact words in IRC at the time were, "Remind me to strangle
- The hint for the other non-red-herring anagram is that it contains some
- If you still have the program books for either PhreakNIC v2.0 or
PhreakNIC v3.0, there's a hint to this part of the Code in there.
- Also, His Holiness JonnyX gave a hint to this jargon in one of his posts
on the list on Friday. He may have done it deliberately, I honestly don't
know, but it's there. Perhaps he's tired of us tracking mud into his head,
and he wants us out. ;)
- If you're still stuck, go take a long long look at the se2600.org
homepage. Plot out the directory structure of the website, by writing down
what links to where. You'll find another hint.
Next installment: We find out where the poem points.
"It is a damned poor mind indeed that can't think of at least two
spelling any word."
- Andrew Jackson (1767-1845) Seventh U.S. President