Tuesday, December 30, 2008

My New Year’s Resolutions

In 2009, I resolve to stop thinking that I am the Center of the Universe. I will no longer feel responsible for things beyond my control. It's not my fault that the world is going to Hell in a hand basket! No more letters to politicians, pleading for world peace. They're men. They want to fight. No more contributions to charitable organizations. They use the pittance I am able to send them for postage to send me more solicitations. Sorry, Polar bears! Sorry,Whales! Talk to the Humvee drivers and big oil executives.

I will no longer deny myself the pleasure of eating chocolate for fear of becoming fat. I'm fifty years old! No one gives a rat's ass whether I get fat or not! They're not looking at me! I will no longer make any attempt to be fashionable. (See the preceding sentence.) My new mantra will be, "If it feels good, wear it."

I will no longer be concerned with any but the most basic social graces. I will, of course, try not to pass gas in public, but I will say whatever I damn well please. No one gives a rat's ass what I say! They're not listening!

I just wish that I were a smoker and a drinker, so I could resolve to not try to give up those bad habits. But, I doubt that anyone would notice, anyway, given my extremely small and remote place in the Universe.

Thank you for not reading this, or caring what I think, or what I resolve.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Braindrops Keep Falling From My Head
(These materialized while I was on an airplane recently)

We're suspended in air
Between the ocean and sky
Someday we will land
I have no headphones
I cannot hear the movie
I saved five dollars
I have a headache
Why don't I take some aspirin?
Perhaps I like pain
Neurotic, you say?
No! Just dreadfully nervous
And a bit anxious
Life is not easy
I try to understand it
It's quite confusing
Where are my ideas?
I've looked everywhere for them
Perhaps they are gone

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Hai-ku. Kan-yu?

I have decided that my life could be adequately expressed in a series of Haikus. Are you familiar with haiku? It is a Japanese form of poetry (I think so, anyway) consisting of three lines, the first line has five syllables, the second has seven syllables and the third has five syllables.
Here are some samples of my Nipponic attempts:

I wish I could write
I would tell a dark story
That no one would read

I hear the music
It flows over my body
and jangles my mind
I'll tell your fortune
Sit down, and show me your palm
It's all written there
I gather sea shells
From yard sales, not from the sea
It's much easier
I tried to hate you
But it was impossible
I love you too much
The day is over
I hear the clock striking twelve
Now I'll go to sleep

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Quick! Call the doctor! I've been infected with the Splotchy Story Virus (aka V3)

Here are Splotchy's rules:
Here's what I would like to do. I want to create a story that branches out in a variety of different, unexpected ways. I don't know how realistic it is, but that's what I'm aiming for. Hopefully, at least one thread of the story can make a decent number of hops before it dies out.If you are one of the carriers of this story virus (i.e. you have been tagged and choose to contribute to it), you will have one responsibility, in addition to contributing your own piece of the story: you will have to tag at least one person that continues your story thread. So, say you tag five people. If four people decide to not participate, it's okay, as long as the fifth one does. And if all five participate, well that's five interesting threads the story spins off into.Not a requirement, but something your readers would appreciate: to help people trace your own particular thread of the narrative, it will be helpful if you include links to the chapters preceding yours.

Ready? Set? GO!

The bus was more crowded than usual. It was bitterly cold outside, and I hadn't prepared for it. I noticed that a fair number of the riders were dressed curiously. As I glanced around, I stretched my feet and kicked up against a large, heavy cardboard box laying under the seat in front of me. (Splotchy)
Rivulets of sweat began cascading down my face and I hurriedly wiped one from my brow before its salty bitterness could burn my precious, precious electric eye. No, the fright couldn't simply be attributed to my allergy to cardboard that always resulted in patches of bloody pustules and mottled skin akin to a poorly applied KISS® -- see, Gene? Put your lawyers away -- makeup job nor the fact that a fair number of the riders were curiously dressed like a toupee-less, yet masterfully make-upped Chaim Witz nor the fact that motionless tentacles were protruding from a number of randomly punched holes in the cardboard box that bore the hideous label Contents, frozen spawn of Old One, 72 oz. nor the realization that I had forgotten my glasses and couldn't see not whom, but what, was slowly shambling down the aisle towards me, its apparently glistening appendages slopping on the possibly filthy floor of this potential deathtrap of a bus recklessly driven by an attractively miniskirted, yet maniacal, maniac, her lapel bearing a button barely visible underneath a swath of jet-black hair and emblazoned with I worship Dagon, ask me how!, which I never did by the way.No, the fright couldn't simply be attributed to any of those mundane things. My wind wandered, dreaming up all sorts of misadventure where I stared death in the face and he stared back and then we had a series of staring contests of which I think I won nearly 40% of them, an excellent number against an entity bearing a head-lopping scythe, don't you think?I stared out the window, and the undulating, slowly shifting, tree-saturated landscape stared back. I won that contest but quickly remembered the old saw about looking into the abyss and having it stick its tongue out. I pulled my electric eye back into the bus and stared ahead instead.Next, a cavalcade of nervous fumbling and rummaging through my pockets to make sure I had an extra nine volt battery. I did -- the apparently glistening appendages slopping ever closer amidst a cacophony of bizarre, intermittent noise -- so I knew I wouldn't have to worry about my electric eye running out of juice until I got back.Which, of course, turned out to be the case, for how else could you be reading this erratic, poorly-written account of horror, unless you stumbled upon the abandoned wreckage of the bus and were rifling through my strangely mutilated corpse severely underdressed for the freezing weather and found this sheet of crumpled and charred paper riddled with poor penmanship along with my wallet that contained a drivers license, library card, work ID, three singles and a bus ticket!But you didn't because I'm not dead, for I just handed the bus ticket to the shambling beast which indeed was slimy for it -- and it, despite its general human visage, was the most accurate description I could muster -- was close enough that I didn't need my glasses."Last stoop fer yew vis'turs."Ahead in the distance, beyond the cardboard box's melting water -- at least, I assumed it was water, and you know what they say when you assume: Nyarlathotep tears you a new one, chump -- pooling at my feet, the creepy troupe of riders and the inhuman coughing of it, bathed by the light of the red moon, I saw the low, yet eerily distinct skyline of Arkham. (Randal)

Arkum hums with a high electric whine, a noise that is like tinnitus to the nth. The man with the monocle who was so strangely dressed coughed on me as the bus lurched to a stop. I hope it wasn't the virus. Now I hunch my shoulders against the freezing wind that hugs the frozen ground. I have two cloptomiters to go before I'm home and it's dark but for the purple neon gloom, looking like a distant nuclear disaster but is merely low light bouncing off the distant metropolis along with the nearly unbearable high whine. And then the wind blows it back upon itself and for a few moments of relief I almost hear silence. I can barely see the ground beneath my feet.What was I thinking when I dressed for the day? My feet are freezing. Thank the dog for the electric eye. I can see the faintly pink glow of my signature footprint along this well trod strip of stone. But it seems eerily empty for now. Odd. This time of night is usually humming with voices coming out of the dark. All I hear is the high city hum and the wind. Several layers of skirts fly up from a gust of wind and I almost topple backward. These tall rubber boots on their platforms are wonderful in a crowd, extend the stride, and strengthen the buttocks, lifting its heft of weight into the air like a pillow. But skirts?I hear the dog once and know I will turn left half way up the lane to my bunker. His voice always rings out once when I reach this spot and even without the eye I turn left, arm raised, palm flattened upward to make contact with the wire of the compound. I trail my gloved fingers along the fence until I feel the gate. Here I must remove my glove and place my naked palm against the freezing surface of the palm ID pad. And it slides open almost silently. I enter and hear it slide shut behind me. It locks with a hollow sound that makes me shudder with pleasure. Now small photocell lights flank the path like little pale full moons.I have a single bunker. I am gifted in certain arts. I can talk to the mad and read their minds. I can smell danger. And I am old. No small accomplishment in these times. So the dog, as he calls himself, and I live together in a cube of concrete with a pyramid roof alone, in silence, but for the sound of my own voice softly talking to myself and his rare great bark or low growl.He doesn't rise when I come in. But I hear him panting softly in his dark corner. The room is only warmed with his body heat. All the fuel was burned long ago. But food will be brought for both of us. He could so warm me better if we slept together but he will not. So I wear all my clothes trying to keep from shivering. I would never ask to sleep in his bed but have invited him into mine. Often. No luck.And now before my fingers stiffen in the cold I must answer the questions sent to me by the mad. Only the mad understand the mad, but not all the mad have my gift to hear their inner voices. We are all somewhat gifted. Some of us have visions, hear voices, but I can only listen to the inner voice, the one that never says aloud what it most fears.(Utah Savage)

The irony of hating that Will Smith movie where he was the only pure human he knew of makes me laugh until I cry only once a day usually, but this makes the second time today.
I'd like to be able to distract myself from this existence as I sometimes can with some maudlin or quirky tale that was uploaded to this confounded eye, but for the time being I just place it on its charger, wondering yet again what renewable substance has been able to sustain the charger's life these 25 years. If I knew that, would I be freezing here like this?
I wish someone, anyone, could or would answer that question. I wish Lilith were here to ponder it with me.

Yes, there are the halflings, but they really are not very good company. The electronic portions of them seem to override most of their humanness. But, compared to those the blogoscopic entities have fully infiltrated, they are a veritable schmorgesborg of spontaneity. I am not sure if I should admit that my insane mother was right and that my "specialness" would "save" me in the end, but those like me are few and far between these days.

What was once a blessing, my telepathic tendencies, has become such a curse that I would no doubt kill myself were it not for Lilith. My only hope is to find her
(Freida Bee)

But wait! If my telepathic tendencies were more reliable, I would know where Lilith is. But I do not know where she is. So perhaps I should rely more on my psychopathic tendencies, which are very reliable. You may recall that I am mad… quite mad, I might add, and in my delusional state I am certain that I no longer need Lilith to ponder with or pander to, as the case may be. What I do need, and need badly, is a man! A real man, 100% human, and with only one tentacle (ahem), if you know what I mean.

I am keeping my electric eye open (thank Xeus for that extra 9 volt battery!), but so far, neither the slimy, multi-tentacled, oddly dressed, freaks on the bus, nor the selfish dog-man in my cold concrete cube measure up to my strict standards.
Of course, there is a strong possibility that I should lower my standards, given the fact that, as I mentioned earlier, I am fricking old and getting older by the minute, and I’m crazy as a lonesome loon howling at the moon. So, I think I’ll try something different…maybe a train ride. I think there’s some kind of law that requires train engineers to be human, and it’ll be nice and warm in that engine room.
Madam Z )

I hereby tag:
Katie Schwartz
Bill Stankus
The Japing Ape

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Never Mind. I'm Good.

I was just sitting here feeling sorry for myself because my life is so dull and boring
and winter is coming and my feet are always cold and I have nothing to show for having lived another day and my shoulder hurts and I want to eat that last Snickers bar from Halloween, but I'm so afraid of getting fat and it's dark outside and I don't remember the last time I actually had fun, AND THEN I remembered tonight's news report on Zimbabwe. As if the poor people didn't have enough trouble, with a totally disfunctional government, civil war, horridly-hyper-inflation, famine, no clean drinking water and who knows what else, NOW they have been stricken with CHOLERA! The camera chronicled people dead and dying, mothers crying over their sick and dying children, and poorly equipped hospitals that are overflowing with desperate sick and dying people.
And THEN I thought, I HAVE NOTHING TO COMPLAIN ABOUT! NOTHING, NOTHING NOTHING!!! I am SO thankful I don't live in Africa.
On the other hand, it's much warmer there than here, and the sun shines longer and no one would care if I got fat, and not every country in Africa is as bad off as Zimbabwe. There's uh...or maybe...hmmm...
Never mind.
The end.

Monday, December 01, 2008

I'm Thankful Thanksgiving is Over!

Oh man! Where should I start? It's not that my in-laws mistreat me, it's just that we are so different from one another. They're Irish Catholics - I'm a heathen. They are not affectionate with one another. It's my nature to be demonstrative. Except for the mother and one brother, they all drink beer and wine non-stop from noon to midnight. I seldom drink, because I am fearful of getting drunk and acting like an idiot. (I saw way too much of that when I was a child.) But the worst thing is that NO ONE gets my sense of humor and only one or two of them has any interest whatsoever in anything I have to say. If I had to be around them more than once or twice a year, I would be convinced that I was the most boring person ever to walk the earth. Fortunately, I have more positive reactions from my own family and friends, so I try to remember that and not get too demoralized.
Bear with me for an example of what it's like. Several of us will be sitting around the table, chatting. Something will strike me as funny, and I make a joke. The conversation stops, everyone becomes stony-faced, and after a few moments of silence they continue talking. I flush with embarrassment and leave the table. It's as though I have thrown a dead fish onto the table. Everyone looks at it with mild disgust and then turn away. You'd think I would have learned by now to just STFU! One of the other sisters-in-law does that. She just gets silently smashed and reads a book through most of the festivities.

Oh well. The food is good and there's no violence, so I shouldn't complain. And, even though my mother-in-law helpfully explained to me that I should cut my hair and regain the weight I lost when I was sick, because long hair and lost weight make a woman look even older than she is, I still love her, because if not for her I wouldn't have my sweet hubby.