Friday, June 20, 2008
I have rid myself of the rating system. I've decided that it is better to write and think oneself mediocre than to set up a rating system and remove all doubt.
Also, I couldn't get it to rate the way I wanted it; in caterponies. I invented them, see, and they are just like real ponies except they grow an extra pair of legs every 5 years, reminiscent of the mighty saguaro cactus. The walking kind.
The caterpony also has a tool attachment for a lower jaw. One has a jackhammer, another a bulldozer blade, one has a off-shore oil-rig drill. There is also the little one-legged caterpony whose attachment is a moist towelette. He doesn't have many friends, unless you count the ones at the rib house, which I don't.
There is also an evil group of Caterponies, the Caterpunks. The leader is a really dumb caterpony but his attachment is Dick Cheney. Quite a tool.
I am reading The Night Land by William Hope Hodgson. It's as if Philip K. Dick were guiding Dante down into hell, except Dante is a 19th century champion cagefighter raised as a gentleman in Victorian England.
I'm worried that given my extremely impressionable mind, I may take to wandering the night looking for my own lost love. Lost isn't the right word; I know where exactly where she is. She's approximately two lifetimes away. I only have the one, see, and I'll never find her in the dark unless she calls out for me. I strain my ears listening but the only sound is the wind playing in the dark.
Eh, yes, well. I saw the Incredible Hulk. It was good. At the end of the movie one of the characters is drinking a green drink, some kind of shot. It nagged at me but I soon forgot it.
Yesterday, at the bank, the teller next to me was speaking with a girl about her bartending school. She said she knew a delicious drink called an Incredible Hulk. I turned, a little too quickly, and said "He drinks one in the movie."
The teller was male and knew exactly what I was talking about. The girl...I don't remember if she did anything. We chatted a bit about the film and then I scampered off.
I found the whole experience enlightening. This girl had been walking around with The Answer, and I had been walking around with The Question but neither of us knew it. I suspect she still doesn't know it.
That's why we need each other, I think. Some of us have the questions and some of us have the answers, but very few of us can recognize what we have. Perhaps it is like sticking your nose against the side of an elephant. Too close to something and you can't tell what it is until it smacks you with a log.
Have a good Pants-Down Friday. Watch out for elephants.
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Hmm...Haloscan, my commenting system, now offers a ratings doodad. I've added it, hesitantly, mainly because it didn't really require any coding on my part and I know sometimes I like something but I'm too lazy to try to think of a comment that doesn't sound contrived. Hence, if the person had this, I could just click on my opinion.
Also, due to the anonymity factor maybe people will be more inclined to let me know when I've done bad. Eh, it's a thing, maybe a writer thing, where I am driven to open myself up to more channels of criticism. (Also, I live in the northernmost room facing the street, if any opinions are only adequately expressed if wrapped around a brick and heaved through a window.)
I don't know. I don't know, it's still an odd thing to put stuff out there and not really know what anyone thinks about it or if it's even being read. I can only imagine what it must be like to publish an actual book. It's like releasing an animal into the wild, maybe. "Go little book, go! You're free now! I can't take care of you anymore, you've got to be among you're own kind. No, I mean it, go! [throws a rock at it] Get out of here!"
Or worse, when it doesn't even look back.
To summarize, I don't know, maybe I'll hate it, maybe someone will hate it, but I'll try it out and see. I may even take the time to tweak the code so the picture is something else and not a star, which I never cared for. Stars, real stars, are way more bad-ass than their ubiquitous pointy depiction on stickers and the arms of punk-rockers. All kinds of elements being birthed and nuclears being fissioned and mile-long flares of millions-degree plasma and all electromagnetic discharges being discharged.
It would take some kind of gif to display majesty like that.
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
A few weeks ago I planted some sunflower seeds along the cinder block wall in my backyard. I gave the planting area extra water every day and pulled out any weeds that I deemed to close for comfort.
After a week or so, quite a few plump little shoots were stretching their flat leafy arms in the sunlight. My care continued; watering, weeding, and crushing between my fingers the box elder bugs that dared nibble the young leaves.
By week the third, my seedlings seemed capable of caring for themselves. They had staked their claim above the sunlight-stealing grass and would be happy enough with the morning dew and the lawn sprinkler my father turned on every other day.
The weekend came and I had outslept the morning. My bee-line to the kitchen for breakfast was interrupted by my father coming in from the backyard. An aura of heat entered with him. Flecks of green stuck to his sweat-stained t-shirt. He had spoken of his intent to cut the grass the day before. My father intends many things and does little else. Perhaps it was my failure then, to lump his desires, the grand and the mundane, into the same category of possibility.
"Did you cut down my sunflowers?"
"I had to cut the grass, son."
He stepped around me and I felt his inhuman warmth and smelled the cut grass and sweat from a job well done.
My father is a man who cuts down the flowers with the grass. I tend to the flowers, keep them safe from hungry insects yet fail to stop the whirling-blades machine that makes the lawn just a lawn again, not a place of living things.
I wonder now, were there not a wall preventing him, if my father would cut the world down into even, yellow-green rows. I wonder, and despair.
"Certainly in a period when masters are many, one must put forth considerable effort. But at the time when the world is sliding into decline, to excel is easy."
-Way of the Warrior
Like all men, I suppose, I seek strength and recognition. The two must exist together for a time, but after that only one is needed, as it will make up for the other.
At times I ponder over the need for a gun. In my years, I have never needed one. In the news I hear of plans for nuclear weapons being passed out like Halloween candy and I wonder, what manner of warrior would I be with a gun? An ant warrior, with a fierce bite, but hardly enough to matter if I battle anything other than ants. There are giants among us, with power enough to melt my gun and carbonize my body long before I could ever come within firing range.
And now a couple of Swiss bankers have that knowledge and they've not been stingy with it. If I have the right to bear arms, why not nuclear? I could put up a sign in front of my house "Warning: Mutually Assured Destruction" to deter thieves and religious solicitors. Well, perhaps not Jehovah's Witnesses. I think their beliefs are founded on exactly that sort of thing.
No, I will abandon my search for power through traditional weaponry and continue working on my Funk Bomb. When activated, it will cause Mutually Assured Dancing, with an awesomeness radius that will cause shimmying and jiving for miles around the blast site, making it impossible to get anything done in that area for years to come.
Monday, June 16, 2008
I dreamt of a skyscraper smack-dab against the tiniest town. From the highest floor, I pressed my face against the glass and tried to make out the lives below. The owner of the skyscraper was the brother of my friend, who I was there to visit. A cloud drifted below me and slowly wisped apart. I felt strange, like a strand of hair trying to grow through scar tissue. The sun was on its way down and I wanted to go home, a long motorcycle drive away but I wanted to go home, or at least far away when it finally got dark here. There were no birds; that's what had been bothering me there were no birds nor roughest beast, the skyscraper and the tiniest town was nestled in a wilderness without. I'd seen enough empty trees, heard enough of empty men and I wanted to go home.
Someone described me as a hippie some time ago. Jokingly, I hope, because I do not consider myself part of that philosophy. Hippie-ness seems to be founded on peace, love, and laziness. I always got the feeling that a hippie doesn't own a tv, for instance, but would happily take one if it was gifted to them.
What I do, am doing, is adopting more of a Buddhist philosophy of accepting my desire for certain things, trying to understand that the desire will not necessarily go away even if it is satisfied for a time, and to learn to enjoy the wanting as much as the having.
I hope to learn to revel in such things as knowledge, music, conversation, and physical activity and lust for them to the degree that I reserve now for strawberry cheesecakes, alcohol, and cutting off Hummers.
What I am, I think, is an economist. A grizzled old economist that hates hidden costs, referred to as "externalities." Like if McDonald's fed me for free, the cost appears to be nothing. But factor in the externalities of obesity, diabetes, and, no joke, scurvy, and the cost of my free food skyrockets.
Also I don't have health insurance so I really should take better care of myself. I've taken seriously my President's suggestion that "the rest of us" should just "not get sick."
It's such a simple solution, it has been overlooked by men of genius and average intelligence alike, and it took this one to figure it out.
To add more stringy okra to this political stew, an Arizonan is running for president. Don't vote for an Arizonan. We're crazy. Superheated dust particles can sneak through the blood brain barrier (I imagine) and once there they build tiny sandcastles that they defend with little sand-guns. Ever vigilant, they ensure that no ideas pass from the left hemisphere to right hemisphere without filing the proper paperwork.
As a result, the corpus callosum is one of the deadliest places in the human brain. If you're an idea.
But we're mad, I tell you, mad! If elected, President McCain will appoint me head of the Department of Fremen. We'll live in the coolness of our subterranean dwellings and ride giant worms to and fro.
All disputes will be settled by duel. The weapon: those long foam pool noodles, aka, the Funoodle. This is the item we have in the greatest abundance, and it spans across all ethnicities and class divisions.
Hmm...maybe we should all vote for McCain. I want my giant ridin' worm! YEEEEEHAAAAW!!! [fires funoodles into the air]