Friday, January 18, 2008

Pneumatic Sex, Corn, Suffering

~ Prologue: Another Dream ~

A fellow at my work and I have been discussing the strange fact that everything we eat is made out of corn. When I say "we", I am referring to North Americans. I don't know know much about what the diet of you UK types consists of, although if the old adage you are what you eat is to be taken seriously I would guess "whimsy" and "awkwardness". This grain of folksy wisdom applied similarly to the North Americans paints a portrait of a peoples who must seem very corn-like. Our coca-cola is actually corn-sweetened water with corn-based flavoring. Our Cheese Puffs and Doritos are nothing more than puffed corn with cheese flavored corn dust all over them. Finally, our cows eat mostly corn, which they then squirt out in the form of corn-cheese and corn-milk, and ultimately end up cut into pieces and placed on a plate at the Keg as a corn-steak.

What this leads me to believe is that we truly are corn people. All of our cells, our protein strands, originate with the humble corn. I wonder if it follows that we exist on a different plane of the physical world than the people who are not on a corn diet, if only slightly. Are there fundamental differences between a corn person and, say, a yam person that make them unable to converse in any meaningful way? What about a chickpea person, could we embrace them without resentment? And what do those slippery fish people, what would they think about that if it happened?

In my dreams I see a world of man-sized corn walking to work, driving cars, attending films and cannibalizing their dead. This is not to be taken in a morbid manner, but rather as a surreal caricature that happens to be just an inch closer to the truth than what we're told is real in the newspapers.

~ Chapter 1: I Am Easily the Most Selfish Person Alive ~

Once upon a time on a different blog I wrote something important:

Call me a bad person but...

I don't want to suffer for my art, I want others to suffer for it.


Although this statement still stands, I would like to add that I don't want other to simply suffer for my art, but suffer from it as well. Candidly, I will admit that the only person ever intended to enjoy it is me. Your enjoyment is coincidental, even perhaps counter-productive.

The corn people have concentrated a vast amount of their resources on reducing their suffering. But the Russians, who are made of grains and roots, have always considered suffering a virtue. Perhaps it would be easier if I became one of them, or at least sold to them.

~ Chapter 2: Fate of the Corn People ~

The root and grain people are sure to continue until the end of all humans. Their virtuous suffering has made them very tough, and that's all it takes. I can not say with complete certainty what the rest of us are destined for, however.

Regarding the future of the corn people, one thing is certain; robots designed for sexual gratification will continue to advance under our eyes.

Female corn people will be sexually obsolete once we have a machine that smells, looks, and feels the same or better in all the manners appropriate to intercourse. These machines will be called gynoids. Male corn people have already begun to become obsolete, to some degree, by machines. However, the machines have not advanced significantly enough to replace the male corn people completely. The current male sex machines are usually called dildos, but in the future they will be called Androids.

The car of the future does not float, it fucks.

~ Chapter 3: Anthropology 203T, Gender and Sexuality ~

Last year I took an anthropology course that was supposed to be about gender and sexuality. In truth, it was mostly about gender, as sexuality was not discussed. This is because the corn people have taboos about talking about the way they were created, especially amongst the academic corn people. Perhaps they are upset that they weren't planted in the ground like their brothers and sisters, the corn which they use to eat.

Although I am partially a corn person I am not afraid to discuss sexuality. This is because I am also a creative energy person who feeds on the magic of ideas which float freely though the air.

~ Chapter 4: The Gynoids and Androids ~

I worry that either the gynoids or the androids will not be finished in development at the same time. The corn people, who are almost as selfish as I am, will not care for the feelings and sexual needs of their opposite gender once they have their gynoids or androids. So if these robots are not developed and released at exactly the same time, the results will be socially disastrous. The corn people, who avoid suffering more than any other peoples, may not be able to tolerate their sudden conditions.

~ Chapter 5: Suffering ~

Gynoids and androids are entirely different than any kind of person, be they corn or grain/root, because they don't have proteins. The extent to which their interaction with humans is meaningful for them is questionable. A movie such as Blade Runner suggests that they would not necessarily think so. However, Blade Runner also supposes that the mechanical people are capable of actual thought, which is questionable. But if they can't think, that also means that they can't suffer.

~ Chapter 6: Regarding the Future of the Gynoids and Androids ~

And what of the gynoid and adroid's fate? I have no doubt that they will outlast their creators. But what remains to be seen is if they will outlast the grain and root people. Is it better to find suffering a virtue, or be incapable of feeling it?

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

We've done it the other way for a long time.

Happy New Year, friends and family. I come here before you today with an idea. A vision, more accurately, that I hope we can fulfill together. A post-holiday vision of the wonderful world that we could live in, if only you'll show the bravery to follow me past the brinks of reason and sanitary living conditions.

Before I begin, I must stress that this is addressed to those of us who are so-called productive members of society; taxpayers, and those attending school. Those of you who have been wise enough to act as a drain in our societal efforts may excuse yourselves, for I ask only that you continue as you would normally.

Every year, we take a few days off of our busy schedules to eat sweets and wrapped meats in celebration of two great days. The first is allegedly the birth date of a magical carpenter. In truth, it was originally a pagan festival celebrating the shortest day of the year and primarily served as an excuse to drink to excess. The second is a date on the calendar which marks the end of a trip around the sun from a point in space selected arbitrarily. But regardless of their origins, they represent state-mandated time off, and in the largest lump sum we're given all year.

Once the festivities die down, however, we find ourselves forced to return to our workplaces or schools. Upon returning to our respective toil, many of us find our hearts and minds less committed than usual. Somehow the fluorescent lights seem harsher, the coffee a more bitter. If you are like me, you may find your thoughts wandering to dark, dangerous places.

What would happen if I extend my vacation? This is perhaps the darkest of such thoughts, if only because it seems so benign. That is to say; how long can I shirk responsibilities and duties, both imagined and real, before the collective weight of all my obligations and debts catch up and threaten to crush me into a gasping pulp?

You can all join me, we can defy our past lives. I would like to see how long we could go. Consider it an experiment, if you prefer the safety of such names. Like a garbage can filling past its rim and teetering comically on the brink of collapse, we can allow everything to fall to pieces. Liquor stores looted, car crashes abandoned in the middle of the road, piles of bills jamming up mail slots and spilling to the ground. We could create something grand, like the floor of some punk-house where no one even wants to clean up their mess since it would require cleaning up the mess of others as well.

I imagine we could go shockingly far with this idea. It could become a dollar auction of sorts; the further we allow things to deteriorate, the less motivated we will be to go back to the regular grind.


UNRELATED ATHABASCA NEMESIS GAUNTLET UPDATE:

(3:45:25 PM) Trevor Record: BLAKE!
(3:45:34 PM) Blake: what up
(3:45:36 PM) Trevor Record: I challnge you to a competition of written wit
(3:45:44 PM) Trevor Record: a short story contest
(3:46:09 PM) Blake: hmm, what are the terms?
(3:46:12 PM) Trevor Record: A judge of your choosing shall decide which is the superior story
(3:46:18 PM) Trevor Record: 1000 words
(3:46:26 PM) Trevor Record: + or - 250 words
(3:46:28 PM) Trevor Record: so
(3:46:32 PM) Trevor Record: 750-1250 words
(3:46:57 PM) Blake: set topic?
(3:47:12 PM) Trevor Record: topic of your own choosing
(3:47:19 PM) Trevor Record: style of your own choosing
(3:47:40 PM) Trevor Record: Must be submitted to the judge
(3:48:02 PM) Trevor Record: we aren't allowed to see one another's stories until the judge makes a decision
(3:48:21 PM) Blake: timeframe?
(3:48:32 PM) Trevor Record: 3 weeks
(3:49:38 PM) Trevor Record: Although the judge can be anyone of your choosing
(3:49:45 PM) Trevor Record: I would state preference for a neutral judge
(3:49:54 PM) Blake: okay, let me pick a judge and then we can start
(3:49:59 PM) Blake: of course, neutral
(3:50:01 PM) Trevor Record: Matthew would be an example of a neutral judge
(3:50:14 PM) Blake: in fact, i think our stories should be submitted without names on them
(3:50:24 PM) Trevor Record: Agreed!
(3:51:03 PM) Blake: okay, let me come up with a judge and I'll get back to you
(3:51:08 PM) Trevor Record: ok

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Athabasca Nemesis Gauntlet

The Athabasca Nemesis Gauntlet is a year-long gentleman's wager.

The Contenders:
Trevor Keith Record
versus
Blake William McStravick

  • Both contenders began the competition with two hundred and one (201) points. The points are represented by two hundred and one (201) shiny baubles.
  • Either of the contenders may challenge the other to a competition. A contender may elect to either accept or decline the challenge.
  • The competition can be of any variety provided that one contender does not have an obvious, unreasonable advantage over the other. Superior strength, intelligence, or learned skill is not considered an advantage as the purpose of the Athabasca Nemesis Gauntlet is, among other things, for the two contenders to measure against one another in these areas.
  • An example of a reasonable challenge would be a footrace, or game of chess. An example of a challenge that is not reasonable would be a race to Nanaimo by any means; contender B. W. McStravick has a significant advantage due to the fact that he lives on Vancouver Island and finds himself with an automobile currently in his possession, while contender T. K. Record lives in the Lower Mainland and finds himself in possession of only a bicycle and bus pass (valid only within the boundaries of the Lower Mainland).
  • In the event that a contender declines a challenge, presuming the challenge is deemed reasonable, they must give up an amount of two (2) points to the contender that challenged them.
  • Should the challenged contender accept, the two will begin the competition at the soonest convenient time. The victor of the competition gains ten (10) of the loser's points.
  • Once a competition has been played or declined once, neither contender may challenge the other to it again. This is to prevent a contender from abusing the system by repeatedly challenging the other to the same competition. Another object of the Athabasca Nemesis Gauntlet is to prove the excellence and worth of the contenders across a great variety of fields.
  • The Athabasca Nemesis Gauntlet commenced on the night of December the fifteenth, in the year of two thousand and seven Anno Domini. Upon the fall of dusk a year hence (December the fifteenth, two thousand and eight), the contest will be complete. The contender with the largest sum of points shall at this point be declared the "winner", the other the "loser".
  • The "loser" shall, at a time deemed convenient to both the gentleman contenders, subject himself to the duties of a manservant in the employ of the "winner" for the period of a day. While in this service the "loser" manservant shall be required, among other things, to prepare and serve no less than 3 meals for the "winner".
As of this date of December the eighteenth, in the year two thousand and seven, the following events and competitions of note have occurred:

December the fifteenth, in the year two thousand and seven (Dec 15, 2007):
  1. T.K.R. and B.W.M. commence the Athabasca Nemesis Gauntlet
  2. T.K.R. and B.W.M. agree to compete in the board game "Monopoly". They agree that only should one of the two win will points be exchanged, as there are three others engaged in this competition; Danielle S., Torrey A., and Gary H. Result: Draw, both T.K.R and B.W.M. go bankrupt.
  3. T.K.R. challenges B.W.M. to "Rock/Paper/Scissors", best 3 out of 5. Result: B.W.M. is the victor, T.K.R. awards him with 10 points.
  4. T.K.R. challenges B.W.M. to "Odds vs. Evens", best 2 out of 3. Result: T.K.R. is the victor, B.W.M. awards him with 10 points.
  5. T.K.R. challenges B.W.M. to "Chess". Result: B.W.M. declines, as the nearest chess set is housed in a nearby bar that he does not wish to enter. B.W.M. awards T.K.R. 2 points
  6. B.W.M. challenges T.K.R. to a dance competition. The three present for the preceding monopoly match serve as judges, dancing is judged based on performance on three solo songs. Result: T.K.R. is the victor, a close match, B.W.M. awards him with 10 points.
  7. B.W.M. challenges T.K.R. to "Pacman", winner goes to highest score. Result: T.K.R. declines after witnessing B.W.M.'s Pacman prowess, and awards B.W.M. with 2 points.
  8. T.K.R. challenges B.W.M. to a round of "Blackjack". Both T.K.R. and B.W.M. begin with 10 chips, the first to lose all his chips will be declared the loser. Result: T.K.R. is the victor. Since B.W.M. had by this time supped at his wine frequently throughout the night, T.K.R. decreed that B.W.M.'s judgment had been impaired and he had bet his chips too liberally, so T.K.R will refuse to accept any number of points exceeding 3.

Monday, October 22, 2007

I'm in no mood

I have been negligent in updating and (even worse) communicating with you, my internet friends. I don't really have any excuses, I've just been doing other things. There were some tests in school, and I had to write some more creative writing stories which essentially became re-writes of previous stories. Last week I went to Seattle to see the Go! Team with some friends of mine. I turned 22 on the 5th - a sickening age indeed, I feel as though I should be getting my act together. What this act entails I cannot say, perhaps being a better son and person is involved.

Talking about yourself is the easiest thing in the world, isn't it? Scott of Hard To Want wants me to take part in an internet meme. He also says I'm "just not normal", although I don't know what he considers normal (I suspect it drives a honda civic). Usually I don't do these, but today I will. I don't have the endurance to finish off any of my half-finished stories. This meme requires that you post a few of your favorite things that you have written on blogger, then link to everyone else who has ever been part of the thread along with their own favorite posts (from their blogs, respectively). Then you tell other people that you want them to do the meme. Scott's favorites were Knock Knock, Off to College, Sorry Darin. I don't know any of the other people so I am not going to link to their favorite posts. Here are the three posts I chose:


The Night Yellow Creek Ran Red


This one is probably the fan favorite, though I can't be sure. I was hesitant to choose anything more recent than this.

Shave Your Head, Have A Drink, and Be Left Alone

I liked this one because it was the first, and possibly last, time I wrote a horror story. But I thought I did a good job! I don't have much interest in writing further stories like this, but it was one of those times I felt really good about myself for writing something in an unfamiliar genre (up next: romance set in the American civil war era.)

I See A Bad Moon Arising

I thought this one was pretty funny, and it is also old (I consider 10 months to be ancient.) It represents one of the stories that was a shift away from my old style. I used to write sort of a stream of conscious topical rant in this blog. Some times I would write about how to save yourself in the event of a zombie apocalypse, and other times it was about how awesome space travel is. Now I usually write stories instead (I wrote stories previously as well, but not as often). I didn't put up anything older than this because I am weird about reading old things I have written, it is sort of like seeing a picture of yourself with an ex-girlfriend.

I won't do the last part of the meme, which is tag other bloggers. People who are named often feel obligated to do it when they don't want to, and others feel left out for not being named. This is probably why I usually don't do memes (also, I don't care all that much if you know what my favorite song is).

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

A Dialogue on Immortality, Personal Identity, and Hungry Ghosts

Gretchen "Mary" Sioux sat in a hospital bed on the verge of death, gorging herself of caramel chocolates to hasten her sweet release. The hospital bed was inside a philosophical allegory center. Perched on a ceiling rafter was John Perry, famed philosopher and charismatic radio personality. Perry pulled mighty ropes to make swing Gretchen's arms to and fro, delivering chocolates to a clanking mouth which he then operated with a winding crank.

David "Brothers" Coen was standing next to Gretchen, shifting his weight from one leg to another in silence. He turned to her, and opened his mouth to speak. Just then Sam "Straw" Mahn burst into the room.

"Hey there Gretchen," Sam chuckled, "hear you're about to kick the proverbial can."

"Your're an ass," said Gretchen, "but I am terrified to think I will soon die. Tell me that it is possible that I might survive death, good friend, and I shall be comforted. Not probable, not laughable to even consider but remotely acceptable. Possible in the most meager way."

"Well, of course it's possible..."

"Oh is it?" Gretchen shrieked, "Hogwash, nonsense. You think that by simply saying it is possible to survive death, it is true? You'll have to do better than that to convince me such a thing could happen."

"Well, I mean, all you have to imagine is that at some point after you die," Mahn stuttered, "that there'll be someone that is you somewhere and so will I and we'll, I dunno, chill out together. I guess that it'll not be on this planet, but, er, they will be exactly us."

"What?" Gretchen said, sitting up angrily with a great heave of John Perry's ropes, "That is nonsense! If I were to destroy a box of Kleenex, you wouldn't say that you met this Kleenex again if you found one that was exactly alike in the middle of space, floating around."

"I'm not saying it will be the similar," Sam said, "it will be the same, like the same soul."

"Soul?" Cried Gretchen, "You just don't get it, do you doofus? A body is what we define ourselves as. Look, I'm going to destroy a Kleenex box to prove my point."

David spoke up, "I think you're being a bit hard on Sam, he's just saying that it's possible..."

"You're out of your element, Donny." Gretchen said, lighting a box of Kleenex on fire.

"It's David!"

"Whatever."

The Kleenex box let out a ghastly wail as it collapsed in on itself. A smoke alarm went off. Above the foot of Gretchen's bed hovered a semi-transparent box of Kleenex, draped in chains and bluish white.

"B-Boo! Whoo!" A discordant voice wailed from the Kleenex, echoing through the cavernous intensive care room, "Boo and whoo I say to you, Gretchen. You have killed me, and now I must go to the land of hungry ghosts to languish until my Karmic debt is paid off in full."

"How can I know that you are the same Kleenex box that I destroyed?" Gretchen asked, "It seems to me that you are likely just a phantom impostor."

"Gretchen!" Said the Kleenex, thunder in its words, "These chains represent the sins of my life. I am doomed to carry them through the wastelands of the next land I go to, hungry and thirsty but unable to find food or water. But my chains, they are nothing compared to the chains that you will carry when you expire, only moments from now."

And with that, the Kleenex disappeared in a cloud of smoke. John Perry began to cough loudly and violently. He fell from the rafters hitting his head. The hospital disappeared, and with it the three friends. Perry awoke to find himself standing before a great gate. Beside the gate was a heavenly Kleenex box.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Everything in the world makes me ill

Stephen Schiller and Ramesh "Rajah" Anthony were at Molly Byrne's, a self-declared Irish Pub next to the highway exit.

"So, Rajah, you said there was some news on Operation Fairy Moon?" Stephen asked.

Operation Fairy Moon was the name that Stephen and Rajah used for a scheme they had been working on. Said scheme was to set up a small hydroponic cannabis grow-op in Stephen's back yard tool shed.

"Well, give me a second." Rajah replied, "I'm trying to get a good look at that barmaid."

The bartender he motioned towards was one of the dream girls who, through an unholy alignment of stars, seeped with a black-magic allure.

"Fuck, I would give anything for that woman to care about me." Rajah moaned, "If it took a bullet to the wife, I'd do it in a damned second."

"Alright, let's get back to business here," Stephen said, sipping at his lager.

"Always with the business," Rajah said with a mock yiddish accent.

"Raj, you're the one who asked me here," Stephen whined, "So what's the deal."

"Well, Schiller, it's just that there have been some seed problems that may stall things."

"What do you mean," Stephen asked, "are flaking out on me?"

"Let's just, ahem, say that Operation Fairy Moon is on stand-by for the moment." Rajah responded.

"What happened, Raj?" Stephen demanded.

"It's nuthin' major, just..." Rajah stalled for a moment, fiddling with the label on the neck of his beer, "... Nadine found the seeds and, I guess, she found out what they were for and is sorta mad. Said she even though she don't care if I smoke it, she isn't gonna have me growing it. So she's keepin' an eye on me now."

"So you think we're on stand-by?" Stephen exclaimed, "It sounds like Operation Fairy Moon is a write off!"

"Oh, she'll forget about it in a bit, don't worry 'bout that." Rajah said, "Besides, I think maybe if I sift through the trash I can find 'em."

"You think it's that simple? Nadine is Amanda's sister, for cryin' out loud, she'll tell her about the plan and it'll be over!"

"Listen, buddy, I handled it." Ramesh said with a grin, "They didn't start callin' me Rajah for bein' brown, I'm the king yo. I didn't bring up the operation or anything, just said that a guy from work asked me to hold. It's all taken care of, so just relax."

"Holding for a friend? What, are you in grade school, she isn't going to buy that."

"Man, what's grade school is you going around pretending you don't smoke up any more when yer around Amanda. Nadine doesn't know jack squat, so neither does Amanda."

"Ugh, she said that Nadine was coming over tomorrow. Amanda was already asking questions about all the rock wool, containers and shit I took home from work. She doesn't ever check out the shed, but who knows now."

The two sat in silence for a moment.

"How 'bout another round of brews, bud?"Rajah suggested, slapping Stephen on the back.

"Aw, I dunno Raj..." Stephen mumbled, "You know I haven't eaten much today and..."

"Is the poor baby's tummy sore?"

"Christ, I'm just not in the mood right now."

"Listen..." Rajah sighed, "Just give it a rest, buddy. Nothing bad is going to happen. Even if Amanda does catch you, what's gonna happen? It's not like she'll phone the cops on you. Be a man about it."

Stephen finished his beer and got up. He pulled a ten dollar bill out of his pocket, dropped it on the table, and turned to walk away. Rajah sighed, rolled his eyes, motioned for the waitress to bring him another beer, and leaned back in his chair.