Legendary psychosubversive hacker Susy Thunder, decades later

Claire L. Evans tracked down hacker, phreaker and psychosubversive Susy Thunder, who found fame when it was real and then disappeared into America's ambient normalcy. As Gibsonian as her legend is, it hardly does justice to the reality.

Weekdays, she worked the switchboard at an answering service, which gave her access to unlisted phone numbers and plugged her into the day-to-day whereabouts of musicians, record company executives, and managers ("A groupie's goldmine," she told the tabloid). Leafing through her records, she took note of the PR agencies and management companies that represented her favorite bands, which were usually listed on the sleeve. When those artists came to town, she'd call venues pretending to be, say, "Delilah from the P and Q Management agency," requesting some last-minute additions to the guest list. On the day of the show, she'd slink down to the artist entrance and grab her backstage pass. When all else failed, she carried a clipboard. Clipboards, she discovered, could get you in anywhere.

The guys in the scene were… well, you know what they're like, and they're now rich and famous while she is a hidden figure. That she beat them (and how she did it) is fascinating, an invisible stratum of history that puts the ones we already saw into new context: "You know why nobody knows who I am?"