Archive for ‘Random Rambling’

Things That Are Awesome: Nine Times Nine is a Waste of Time.

Wednesday, June 28th, 2017

I refuse to stop.  You shall suffer as well.  Suffer by looking at all these awesome things that you aren’t.  If you are, please disregard this.
-Snips and snails and killer whales.
-The surety that your body is not a temple. Your temple is part of your body. Geez.
-Many hams making much warmth.
-The arc of the universe bending into a long middle finger.
-Cloning dinosaurs hurly-burly.
-Flopped flips.
-But not flipped flops. They are very distinct.
-The angriest manatee.
-Unspangling banners.
-Don’tdecahedrons.
-Counting backwards, sideways.
-The prettiest smiles with the ugliest teeth.
-Crumble.
-A soft, serrated, saurian susurrus.
-Pepper and salt.
-Or just pepper.
-Not pep, though, that’s completely different.
-Songs of sevenpence.
-Live, thrashing weight with plenty of life in it yet and a whole lot of bad attitude.
-Very fierce little things with very soft little feathers.
-The kind of legs that just won’t quit because they’re supported by rigid superstructure and aren’t actually capable of bending that way and besides if their owner lies down for too long they’ll develop tissue necrosis.
-Not having tissue necrosis.
-Really old and outdated websites.
-Really old and outdated books.
-Really old and outdated movies.
-Not really old and outdated views, though. A lot of those are kind of shit.
-Dicing without first slicing.
-Ruffling feathers on birds that can’t give a hoot. Because they aren’t owls.
-Pandas with two thumbs. On each hand.
-Scraps.
-Itchy trigger nose.
-Waste well timed.
-The siren, savage song of the lesser junknado, thundering through the city garbage dump.
-Pre-seqing-prequels.
-Bits without bobs. Seriously, to hell with bob. To hell with that guy.
-Fresh new islands on worn old coastlines.
-The drawn-out whines of plate tectonics.
-Clipping your accent for the purpose of later scrapbooking.
-Paper that’s been folded one time too many. Or too few. Or just right.
-Really it’s just so very satisfying any which way.
-Lunch.
-The others are okay, but let’s be serious: it’s lunch.
-Cleaning a dented surface until it’s spic-and-spackle.
-Being tickled past pink into red and then full-reversing straight into blue.
-Unnecessary crawling, creeping, and sidling.
-Loud mumbling.
-Quiet screaming.
-Just sort of talking in a matter of fact and extremely moderate tone but never stopping for breath until someone forces you to.
-Communism and Capitalism becoming unexpected whacky roommates, launching a hilarious sit-com that lasts for decades and frequently leaves the world on the edge of its seat (and launch buttons).
-The dickens.
-Not Charles. The.
-Eternity rounded down.
-Anything that’s much bigger than it should be but smaller than good taste would demand.
-The fastest feet in the West.
-Gritting your teeth while polishing your smile.
-All things dim and squamous.
-That one moment where a guy looks off into the middle distance with a faraway manly glint in his eyes and his jaw set just so and then he steps in some dog crap and it’s really fresh and makes an audible noise and he flinches before he catches himself while everyone’s looking.
-Gobs of globes.
-Shelves with just barely exactly too many books.
-Failed symmetry.
-That particular feeling you get in your spine right before you pass out. No, not the bad one. The other one.
-Roiling hills.
-Upside-down boats. Only if they still work, otherwise they’re just tragic. \
-Hops and skips untroubled by jumps.
-Anything that a bored cat does. Especially Jareth. Hi, Jareth.
-Whatever series of events led to Jareth being able to read the above.
-Repetition. Repetition. Repetition. Repetition. Repetition. Repetition. Repetition. Re
-Corroded crapulousness.
-A fierce sort of jam.
-A friable sort of jelly.
-A noncommittal bit of toast.
-Romans that use Y instead of V.
-The freedom to fricassee.
-Actually knowing what the hell fricassee means. Specifically, not in the abstract. Surprisingly rare really.
-Surly sharks.
-Needlessly unsleek, cubular technology. With ugly matte beige coverings.
-Especially when paired with large, bulky, barely-electronic monitors.
-Swallowing your food thirty times before each chew.
-Lavish lipids.
-Serendippishness.

No Swimming.

Wednesday, January 4th, 2017

The beach is closed.
Why? Who knows.
It’s nothing that I’d know about.
Was it the sharks? The dogs from the parks?
They did shit a lot, the louts.

The beach is closed.
Well, so it goes.
Never much liked to swim here.
It could’ve been the needles, or the carnivorous beetles.
Maybe both, I fear.

The beach is closed.
No more sand ‘twixt my toes.
Not that there was much left, sad to say.
Half of it was rock, the rest was just blocks
Of compacted refuse, from back in the day.

The beach is closed.
Where will seagulls doze?
Half-filled with trash, half with spite.
That look in their eyes as they came for your fries.
Jesus, that’d give God a fright.

The beach is closed.
Well, that just blows.
There go my plans for the summer.
Where will I go, where E. Coli don’t flow?
Man. What a bummer.

The beach is closed.
Could’ve been the glows
Of strange light, down past the pier.
The places they say, where the fishmen did lay
in wait, to rip, gnash and tear.

The beach is closed.
Well, go with the flows.
That’s what all the others did.
Grabbed by riptides and taken for rides
Down deep, where dark things hid.

The beach is closed.
Unfair, I knows.
It was homely, safe, and cool.
What was the harm, I say, if children did play
A bit close to the sewage plant pools?

Things That Are Awesome: Things That Are Awesome VIII: Awesome World, Dawn of Awesome.

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2016

I’m sorry to report that I’m still here.  By way of apology, have some things that are awesome.
-Slumping it.
-Willows seizing the winds and launching themselves skywards in a hideous plot for global domination of all that remains landbound.
-Any of the (surprisingly numerous!) tricks, techniques, and know-hows that can be stored entirely inside the human wrist.
-Kronosaurus queenslandicus and its teeth too.
-Quiet superpredators. You know. The discreet ones.
-Sugar-spun, high-mounded densely-wadded bliss. Wrapped around a paper cone for easy handling.
-Alternatively they also have candied cheeriness and that costs way less.
-The facts and the furious.
-Whistling before the graveyard. It gets it out of your system and it doesn’t annoy the residents as much. Really, is a little common courtesy too rare to part with anymore?
-Meeting something with half-force, just in case you need a little extra force later.
-Thrift in bombardment.
-Bombardment for reasons of thrift.
-Really tiny trees.
-Anything that’s ever been sized in terms of breadboxes.
-A rigorous nap following a lazy exercise.
-Rip-snorting.
-But only when done by experts. You can rip your snorts out permanently if you’re careless.
-Survivalist literature professors who know this great little bit of flowing verse with lots of poetic eddas where you can stop and catch a few trout for supper if you’ve got a hook and a bit of string.
-Isolating vim from vigour so we can find out what the hell it is anyways.
-Cloning dinosaurs hanky-panky.
-The intersection of surliness, burliness, and churlishness.
-Physical therapy for crunched numbers that leaves them comfortable with themselves and their bodies.
-Food preparation that involves pummeling.
-Whywolves, whowolves, whenwolves, and howwolves.
-Tocking timebombs.
-That long slow walk up the slippery slope after you go down it. It’s surprisingly relaxing if you zone out and you can completely ignore the weight of the toboggan.
-When the breeze shoots back.
-Volcanoes that spend most of the time rambling ominously.
-Clogged arteries doing a dance. It makes those little wooden clacking sounds against the floor, it’s so cute to watch.
-Well-packed and well-stocked tackle boxes that contain a balanced set of shoves, pushes, and lunges suited to a variety of environments and targets.
-Fungis and fungoils.
-Nothing matters.
-They’re quite harmless as long as you keep them separated from something matters.
-Gnashing of teeth for its own sake with no loud wailing getting in the way for once.
-Organisms that go ‘bloop.’
-Inadvertance.
-Fish that flip around on the shoreline.
-Denticles. They’re like teeth for your skin, why haven’t we tried this yet.
-Recyclable hopes and dreams.
-Dirling whervishes.
-Squamous, eldritch, cyclopean clouds.
-Humankind were never meant to find bunnies in clouds such as these.
-The life acerbic.
-Safe houses for whales to live in.
-With nice windows and carefully-selected krill.
-Warm days with cool breezes.
-And an ice cream bar.
-While walking a puppy.
-And battling a cybernetic chimpanzee.
-Gentle and motherly screaming.
-The parenting instincts of crocodilians.
-Nutrients in unexpected places.
-Ten thousand tons of any given substance.
-Or anything from nine hundred ninety-two thousand to ten thousand and six tons. I’m not that demanding.
-Correct and lavish enunciation of the word ‘euphonium.’
-Stars that twinkle in tandem.
-Thorough wasps.
-Not thorough WASPS though. God no.
-Teddy bears.
-That is to say, anthropomorphized bears that resemble Theodore Roosevelt in both appearance and mannerisms.
-Giants that live in fear of tiny little people getting into their cupboards and infesting their cereal or something or giving them cancer, causing them to buy into a fraudulent alternative healthcare scheme involving spreading useless white powder over their food to drive away the tiny little people.
-The white powder is baking soda.
-Sharks with teething problems.
-A person with teething problems. Specifically, that their teeth are turning into shark teeth.
-A heartwarming family comedy involving a family that gives birth to a small but energetic shark pup instead of a human baby who nevertheless love their offspring and do their best to make her at home in an environment she is ill-adapted to wait a minute this is literally just Stuart Little never mind.
-Stuart Little but with more sharks.
-Boldness going unrewarded.
-Too many books to fill a shelf but just enough to replace the wall.
-Giant fans in creaking, dilapidated genetics facilities in the hearts of obscure rainforests that groan and wheeze when they’re turned on.
-Fifteen pounds of salt on five pounds of food.

Fecal Analysis.

Wednesday, January 27th, 2016

Ape shit
Red-hot, with a white, pulsating core that blisters skin and raises the hair on the back of the neck. Lumpy in apparent texture, but closer palpation reveals the ‘lumps’ are actually jagged spines. Smells frenzied, with a nose of piss and vinegar. Frequently used in fertilizing grudges, outbursts, and maniacal sprees, as well as tanning hides. Will cause harm in a private residence without trained supervisors present.

Bat shit
Messy and haphazard, often found in over-complicated winding patterns that suggest several plans went wrong at once. Consistency varies wildly from feces to feces, as well as within that same feces. Smells like primal scream therapy funneled through the nostrils, with a warm, nutty finish. Sometimes used to grow fruits in loops, but largely considered hazardous for human consumption. Do not touch.

Bear shit
Robust, solid and earthy in form, texture, and heft; indubitable in its firmness. Looks exactly like you’d expect it to and nothing else besides. Incredibly strong smell renders it obvious to even the most cursory of inspection. A common and everyday sort of feces that can often be found right where you’d expect it to be – in fact, so often that most people never even bother to verify its presence at all.

Bull shit
Insubstantial and chalky, crumbles at the slightest skeptical touch. Possible formations can include: mounds, mountains, heaps, reams, tons, wads, and truckloads. Scent is arbitrary, but you’ll know it when you smell it. No common household use, but can ‘hive’ inside a willing host, acting as a form of symbiosis: the host animal provides a warm, safe nest, and the feces, when spewed violently, offers a form of basic defense. Signs of bull shit habitation tend to include: slight browning of the sclera, nose tip, and, when smiling or grinning, most exposed teeth. Reviled publically, yet overwhelmingly popular.

Chicken shit
Fleeting and trickly spatters, prone to running. Often deployed in place of urine. Is a key ingredient in many forms of industrial lubricant, but unadulterated usage can result in jerky, awkward movements. Exposure can be fatally embarrassing in serious adults or people who want to be serious adults. Spreads by word of mouth.

Horse shit
Similar to bull shit but more explosive and volatile. Can erupt at any moment when exposed to skeptical inquiry. If left to ferment longer, can detonate into subcritical apeshit. Use tongs, dispose of in a calm, neutral environment and allow a cool-down period before re-exposure to the source of the feces.

Things That Are Awesome: Seventh Time’s the Chirrup.

Sunday, June 28th, 2015

So.  Here we are again.
Well, here I am again.  You are just over there.  Not getting older.  You need some things that are awesome to knock that stuff off.

-A hard day’s nothing followed by a nice relaxing slaving.
-The fineness that forkdom has to offer.
-Literal metaphors.
-Non-hominid ghosts because woah if there’s this many dead apes floating around already just imagine the count on, say, ghost sharks.
-This is to say nothing of spectral arthropods. Trilobites, man.
-Hornswaggling that results in actual horns.
-A thirst for vengeance that is really more misdirected peckishness.
-A stitch in time that saves eighteen due to superior needleship.
-An infinite number of monkeys with infinite guitar picks and an infinite amount of time composing the works of John Lennon.
-Low noon.
-Actually, more of a medium-low.
-Ferocity out of bounds after being put in a box for crossing a line because your hands were tied.
-Milk that gives 101%, although at that point it may technically be lard.
-Machines that look like animals.
-Animals that look like machines.
-Machines that look like mach – no, no, sorry, that doesn’t make sense at all, let me try again
-Animals that look like animals. Whew, that almost got ridiculous for a second.
-Cloning dinosaurs jiggery-pokery.
-Songs of sixpence digitally remastered and currency-converted to fit our modern age.
-Really aggressive and belligerent cheese being put in its place.
-On a cracker.
-In my stomach.
-Unchecked, voracious rapacity. But only because it sounds so very pretty when said aloud.
-Sunsets that get up close and personal.
-Lightly trammeled wilderness, with a nice greek salad or something.
-Crews that cut crewcuts.
-Six miles of highway spontaneously gaining sentience.
-During rush hour.
-And it wakes up on the wrong side of bed.
-Peaceful, thriving robot civilizations threatened with biological apocalypse due to Science Gone Wrong.
-Extraordinary measurements. I think all of us can agree on that one in some way.
-The kinds of words that make you ‘pop’ your lips together to say them. Like ‘plump.’ Go on, try it, it’s great.
-Tigers. But not lions. Those guys are assholes.
-Seriously.
-Falutin’ of any stripe, shape, or shade.
-The seventeen unknown hells of Murgatroyd.
-Pinpricks practicing needlepoint.
-Food chains that form repeated loops.
-The holy trinity of pen, paper, and pauper.*
*-Powered by port.
-Yes or no questions successfully annihilated by maybes.
-Properly applied dodecahedrons.
-Rocky ridges paved with rocky road.
-Though the traffic in summer can get a little sticky.
-The responsible, safe, careful, and adult use of trans-continental nuclear ballistic weapons.
-During reasonable hours, when dressed respectably.
-Angry, angry hippos.
-Those really nice hand-carved cash registers you can trade from that lost clerk tribe they found in that abandoned Walmart in New Brunswick.
-Insults that any schmorphkeistel can tell were just made up on the spot.
-Things that are bioluminescent that really shouldn’t be.
-Also, things that are bioluminescent that really shouldn’t be.
-Persistence triumphing over hard work and diligence.
-Peeved expressions on inhuman faces. The moreso the better.
-Cell phone receptions that end with Nokia getting into a drunken fight with Koodo and Bell saying ‘fuck’ in front of its grandchildren repeatedly.
-Sex and the single snail. It’s more complicated than it looks.
-Vampires with all the weaknesses. All of them.
-Even the one that you just made up.
-Mighty morphin’ butterfly chrysalises.
-Events based upon a fake story.
-Except for global warming denialism.
-Kooky old medical beliefs like humour theory made laughably outdated and obsolete thanks to the wonders of modern homeopathy.
-Things that look like spiders but aren’t.
-Things that don’t look like spiders but are.
-That crawling sensation skittering up and down the back of your chair right now.
-Crocodileade for needy families without a crocodile to eat them.
-Septemberfest. It’s pretty obscure; you probably haven’t heard of it.
-Heartbreaking tales of cross-phylum romance and tragedy as long as they don’t produce viable offspring because holy HELL that’d be freaky.
-Like, imagine a baby spider-camel. The FUCK.
-Pots o’ gold that nobody cares about and nobody ever will.
-Invigorating sneezes.
-Anything that is best described as ‘hyperkinetic.’
-Small children and small animals interacting to the child’s detriment and the animal’s direct gain.
-The Savage Stories of Doreen Beckleback, Pulp Housewife.
-A lovely bunch of coconuts.
-But really, plums would be even better. They’re almost as fun to say as ‘plump.’
-The physiological benefits and psychological side-effects of frequent nose-picking.
-Endless waves of bloodthirsty foaming-at-the-mouth rampaging Chief Executive Officers.
-The ten thousandth syllable of pi.

Storytime: Neurozoic.

Wednesday, February 25th, 2015

Consider dinosaurs.
Lord knows I can’t stop.

Morning. Noon. Night. Breakfast lunch dinner/supper (snack?). Dusk to dawn and back again through the darkness and daylight. And every hour of every minute of every day, there they are again, larger than life and sitting inside my skull.

Tarbosaurus
Iguanodon
Lambeosaurus
Stegosaurus
Carnotaurus

It’s no joke I’m telling you, living life with five-ton lizards (not lizards, they’re very different) bouncing around your head. You can’t get a break, you can’t sleep, you can’t focus. A man asked for change and I gave him Deinonychus. Now there’s an energetic surprise! Have you ever tried to write a paper with an Acrocanthrosaurus breathing in your ear from the wrong side out, with a Dromaeosaurus winking at you from your monitor whenever you stop to click click click your way to wordcount? It’s not funny.

Kol
Minmi.
Allosaurus
Triceratops
Diplodocus
Coelophysis
Compsognathus
Pachycephalosaurus
You can spew out those syllables and watch the names flow like ripples in puddles of Greek. Throw some Latin in there too and watch the splash of clotted-up dead language – oh, and Chinese too, musn’t forget the Chinese nowadays, and the Mongolian, and oh, and oh, and oh, so many more! Careful… mixing languages is like mixing chemicals: you should leave it to experts. Wear glasses on your brain and don’t step in a nomen dubium; they’re everywhere most days.

Terrible lizards but I’m telling you they really aren’t. Lizards, I mean. They were terrible surely and I mean that in the older sense of the word which is ‘awful’ which is ‘awe-ful.’ Producing awe.
Awesome. Woah.
Still everybody liked to make them lizards for a while. Big lizards stomping in jungles and wallowing in marshes and roaring across that one Arizonan wasteland that was the evil twin of the place Wile E. Coyote and the Roadrunner always hung out.
I’ve got those up there and let me tell you they make an awful fuss. And they slouch something fierce. Look at those bloated pot bellies and saggy hips, marvel at those poor limp lifeless tails. No wonder they went extinct without cardigans to hide all those varicose veins. What dinosaurs. Can’t hardly pull them out of their bogs to save a scale.
Nowadays we all know better thanks to Jurassic Park. Dinosaurs are found in forests, not swamps, and they run around really fast and hunt you through redwoods and ginkgoes.
Man it’s going to take a lot of hard work to put feathers on all those leathery hides a few generations down the line. I hope Stephen Spielberg’s willing to put up the bill. Lots of imaginations out there need new wallpaper. I wonder where they’ll be this time?

Talking of where…
Utahraptor
Shunosaurus
Albertosaurus
Edmontosaurus
Everywhere’s got a dinosaur. Everyone’s got a dinosaur. Leaellynasaura – now THERE’S a lucky paleontologists’ daughter! And Drinker. And Othnielia.
(What a peaceable pair those two, what a shock to find two mild-as-milk herbivores gifted with the names of those bunch)
Find a bone or know someone who finds a bone and all of a sudden a (once)living, (formerly)breathing, (no-longer)walking animal is suddenly named! A consolation prize for going extinct!
It’s no consolation to know that you can’t ever see them again, of course. You can’t meet a
Ceratosaurus
in the woods and you’re out of luck for
Kentrosaurus
and as for
Parasaurolophus
we’re fresh out and we’ll never be in stock again.
It’s a tough time to like dinosaurs. All we’ve got are pictures in our heads and oh Christ did I mention that mine is full? Full to heaving, full to bursting. Ferns and fronds and feathers and scales all squirming out through my earlobes wanting to run riot and show the furry little gerbils they were never gone just hiding.
They’re all fakes, of course. Nothing but phony fantasies and cheesy action scenes from bad sequels here. Not proper fake dinosaurs like we have in museums or in journals, made of skeletons or skeletons covered with skin. Those are REAL fakes, and that’s even better than real. All I have are my fake fakes. There’s Camptosaurus stacking rocks and rocks to make cities; there’s lush woodlands filled with hidden teeth and eyes; there’s a thunder lizard that spits thunder and I think I can see a silent forest where the trees are shattered and the small things are dead and there’s always a tyrant watching you.

Tyrannosaurus rex.
Tyrant (libellous?).
Lizard (no she isn’t).
King (sovereign).
No wonder she’s still popular even now that her weight class is getting crowded: Giganatosaurus is never going to be as easy to say, and Spinosaurus doesn’t have the panache. How can you beat a tyrant king, even if she isn’t a lizard?
Carcharodontosaurus nearly pulls it off, but she’s too big a mouthful conceptually and physically. Great-white-shark-toothed-lizard. No. That’s too much.

Brachiosaurus and a tree.
(It’s Giraffatitan now, and Brachiosaurus no longer exists as you thought you knew you thought you knew it.)
Diplodocus and a watering hole.
Camarasaurus and a cliff-side migration.
They’re all so picturesque, aren’t they? They come prepackaged with scenery and actually they really ARE scenery. Landscapes. Walking landscapes. Not at all terrible. Quite awesome though.
But they don’t stick inside like the predators do. God what a bunch of narcissists. Show us some fangs and we’re ready to hop onto them and scream bloody murder. Pull out the knives and the guns and the heavy rocks with pointy edges! We will phony-triumph over this thing we have created in our heads, no matter how many fake dead men the road to bogus-glory takes!

Then again, how do you not do that?
It’s easy to put people on paper. Harder for animals. Harderer for animals that are too dead to protest. There’s nowhere you can check this sort of thing, you can only get informed uninformed guesstimates. And that’s a painful thing to hear when you’re trying to imagine what sort of temple a Dilophosaurus would build, or what kind of gods would haunt it. You’ve got to think of a thing that you can’t think of. There’s hospitals for that sort of thing. That’s not a good track record and that’s not a good sign of a good future, trying to imagine the past before pasts happened.
Just let it go. Admit what’s gone is gone. Face the skeletons and tell them they’re missing the good stuff.
Better a headful of terrible lizards than a head without any awe at all.

How to Fossilize and Profit.

Wednesday, September 24th, 2014

When it comes to living forever, everyone’s an expert.
With that kind of introduction, who’s going to want to listen to me, right? Well, here’s what I’m selling: something proven. Something that’s been done before and worked, something that’s been tested through time in the most obnoxiously literal way possible: fossilization.
Now, I’m not going to lie to you, I’m not going to pretend that this is a perfect solution, because there IS no perfect solution. Fossilization has several disadvantages over most competing immortality solutions: it takes time, and a lot of it; it takes patience, and even more of it; and if you do it wrong you’re liable to get whittled away helplessly by surface erosion over many humiliating centuries with no ability to stop it. That said, the positives are weightier: if done properly it’s as sure a thing as can be (no hidden Achilles heels waiting to be jumped on – don’t worry about hiding your heart inside an egg inside a duck on an island!); it’s extremely low-key and low-maintenance; and finally it’s great for peace and quiet since the process demands solitude and passivity in the first place. If you’re still with me, then read on and I’ll go over the general idea of how the process should work out.

First off, you’re going to want to pick a good spot to fossilize. Remember, you’re going to be spending a long, long, LONG time here – plan for the future and don’t get sloppy. Trusting Mother Nature to sort it all out is a good way to end up burned when it’s too late to fix things. Important don’ts: don’t use upland environments because there’s too little sediment to shelter your bones; don’t use acidic soils because you’ll get mulched up before the mineralization kicks in; and don’t under any circumstances use the deep ocean if you’re planning to stay more than two hundred million or so years unless you enjoy being subducted into the mantle and pulverized under unimaginable heat and pressure. You want something with sediment: deep marine environments might be risky, but coastal deltas, floodplains, riverbeds, and anoxic spots like swamps are great places to stash your body where nosy scavengers and oxygen-consuming bacteria can’t get at it while you rot in relatively undisturbed peace. You’ll thank me when your head isn’t detached from your spinal column by curious racoons.

Next up, you’ll need to die. For many of you this will come naturally; others may require a bit of effort and work to really grasp the concept. The following methods have proven reliable, though none of them have a 100% success rate. Experiment to discover which works for you.
-Attempt to consume prey conveniently trapped in a bog/morass/tar pit.
-Become old and weak with at least one debilitating injury. This is a perennial favourite.
-If you’d rather your entire species came with you, try to develop a crippling overspecialization in a single incredibly narrow niche, like only eating a particular kind of leaf from a single species of tree, or refusing to reproduce anywhere but three tiny islands separated from each other by tens of thousands of miles.
-Loudly ask yourself “I wonder what this does?” prior to examining any unfamiliar object/organism.
However you do it, do it. Before you know you’ll be dead as a doornail – and remember to aim for the sediments on your way out, before consciousness fades. There’s nothing more embarrassing than managing to die on the one exposed piece of bedrock for a hundred miles, or getting lightly buried and then flushed out by the very next flash flood to come through the gulley. Don’t count your diageneses before they’re lithificated.

Once you’re dead and buried, you’ll have to bake for at least ten thousand years. Remember, that’s just the minimum period – the maximum is as damned well long as you feel like – and even then it’s fuzzy. Timing may and will vary depending on your size, the exact circumstances surrounding your death, the immediate environment, and roughly every other factor imaginable and unimaginable. Incidentally, the wording of the heading isn’t just a cooking reference; you’ll be literally ‘becoming one with the planet’ in the process of this and the subsequent mental effects can be disorienting, especially by the time your brain’s been dissolved and your skull is undergoing permineralization. Just try to kick back and enjoy it a little, because there’s nothing quite like it. If you can feel yourself beginning to panic, remind yourself that you’re dead and it’s too late to care about anything because you’re dead now. Most people aren’t the quickest thinkers when they’re embedded in sedimentary rocks, so by the time you’ve noticed any potential flaws in that logic you should be almost done!

Now that you’re officially fossilized, escaping your prison is your new goal, but ‘goal’ might be a bit of a strong word, and so might ‘prison.’ A fully-fossilized body preserved in a sedimentary matrix is like a warm blanket on a cold morning: most people don’t want to leave it. But don’t worry; unless some unlucky geological upheaval shoves you under a craton until the planet’s eaten by the sun (low odds), you’re more or less guaranteed to popout at some point or another. Wait long enough and oceans will vanish, rock will erode, and then there you are, peeping out at the sun as fresh as a daisy and three times as mineralized as before. Now is your time for motivation – you’ve probably got just a few short centuries before the rocks around you fall apart, so you’d better get your head back in the game or you’ll go with them. If you’re very lucky maybe some nosy busybody will spy you peeking out of the stone and have you chiselled out, and if you’re luckier still you might be put in a relatively safe, dry place for a while after that where you can get your shit together at your own speed. That said, don’t bet on it and don’t let your guard down. Sometimes you’re being dug up to be stuck on someone’s mantelpiece, sometimes you’re being dug up to be ground into dust and used as a virility drug.

Finally and most crucially, it’s time to enjoy the benefits! Those bones have held you down for millions of years in shiftlessness, time to get them crackling again! You can wear them like a cheap suit that weighs six tons or you can shed them like a chrysalis to reveal whatever horrifying true form of amalgamated minerals and somnombalic spite you’ve been nurturing under them for longer than is physically imaginable, whichever makes you happier. Once you’re mobile you can revel in the sad sensation of revisiting a planet you willingly abandoned, but try not to get too depressed over whatever horrifying changes have emerged since you decided to commit to the Big Nap. Whatever happened is de facto not your fault, and hey, if you feel any lingering resentment over it – say, if whatever pitiful little groups of subspecies you used to think of as food items have displaced your descendants from their planet – why not reign over them as a terrible, undying god-king, devoid of flesh and mercy? It’s dead simple – literally! – since you’re almost bound to spark ancient primal fears deep within their psyches simply by existing. Intimidate, dominate, consume, bully, and terrorize to your heart’s delight.
Not that you’ll have a heart anymore.
Or a stomach, so the consumption will be strictly cosmetic.
But hey, you can still please yourself, and really, isn’t that what this is all about?

Things That are Awesome For the Sixth Time.

Wednesday, June 25th, 2014

Like the old in an olderglass pass the olds of our lives. Oldly.
Look at all this stuff here that’s happened while I’m being old.

-Magma-based ecosystems and the geologists who are eaten by them.
-Sprawling Mesozoic civilizations whose lingua franca consists primarily of hootin’, stompin’, and hollerin’.
-The desire to succeed, the boldness to try, and the incompetence to prove otherwise.
-Giant carnivorous therapods arm-wrestling.
-Swashbuckling and nefarious yet strangely charming dental hygienists.
-The miracle of tube worms.
-Subterranean marsupials. As long as they aren’t teenagers or ninjas. And don’t live in a sewer. Sewers are much less hospitable, homey, and capacious than fiction would lead you to believe.
-The land of the eyeless where the one-eyed man is considered an okay guy but seriously what’s with those goddamned EYES?
-Languages consisting primarily of winks.
-Of varying salaciousness.
-Musical instruments constructed from skeletons.
-Musical instruments constructed from skeletons being played by musicians with exoskeletons.
-Musical instruments constructed from skeletons being played by musicians with exoskeletons for the auditory pleasure of invertebrates.
-Musical instruments constructed from skeletons being played by musicians with exoskeletons for the auditory pleasure of invertebrates inside a concert hall made from the husk of a giant protist.
-Cloning dinosaurs pell-mell.
-The awe and the power of jellyfish.
-Because we’re all going to be seeing a lot of that and we’d better get used to it.
-Things that are far larger than they have any business being.
-Ferocious and majestic house cats that rule over untrammeled wastes of frayed carpeting as far as the eye can see.
-Clocks that generate borrowed time for public consumption at highly reasonable interest rates.
-Buildings that used to be alive.
-Buildings that are still alive.
-Buildings that are still alive and are your wisecracking best friend that you go on adventures with.
-Plucky little coelurosaurs that stand up to the big guy and evolve into birds.
-Or plucky little coelurosaurs that stand up to the big guy and evolve into tyrannosaurs and eat him. I’m not taking sides here.
-The wonderful world of Pamela Barker. Go on, ask if you can take a look, she usually charges a pittance and it’s the best biosphere I’ve ever seen anyone fit into a matchbox.
-Endless whales. No upper limit. Just wall-to-wall whales, then more behind the walls. Literally forever. An infinity of whales. Full stop. Except there are no stops because there is no point where there are not more whales.
-A reasonably-priced donut that’s pretty darned tasty.
-Books that are larger than computers.
-Computers that are larger than rooms.
-Rooms that are larger than houses.
-Houses that you can put in your pocket and take home with you.
-As long as they’re machine-washable.
-Damning socks.
-Full-contact un-refereed no-holds-barred illegal back-alley math ‘bouts.
-Alphabets. Betabets too. Omegabets I’ll pass on. Epsilonbets no no no see I don’t do that shit shut the fuck up, but I know a guy who knows a guy.
-Nice smooth rocks with lots of trees on ‘em.
-Aggravated moss that turns terminal.
-Judging other people for their failure to think for me properly.
-The Little Mongol Horde that Could. Deserved more press than it got.
-The audacity of apathy.
-Or not. Whatever.
-Humming with intent. Also outside the tent oh HO knee slapped.
-Secret bases constructed inside things secret bases would not be expected to be constructed inside of.
-The end of an era. Any era, just pick one. There’s usually plenty of choices.
-Home products crafted from obsidian for entirely practical reasons.
-Home products crafted from obsidian for entirely impractical reasons.
-Surgery based around volatile chemicals and lots of chanting.
-Things that should have glowing eyeballs that don’t.
-The use of typeface to make a philosophical point, as long as someone gets punched before, during, or after the fact.
-Things that are big but not ol’. Most things shrink when they get ol’, I don’t see why this isn’t more common.
-Emergency use of the inner ear as a filter. For anything, really. Use your imagination. And your inner ear.
-Ancient horrors so feared that man dare not smell of them aloud and sniff only surreptitiously, with fearful glances.
-The dance of those who give no fucks.
-Elegance in brutal overwhelming force. Or vice versa.
-Zippiness in general.
-A calm, slow, even voice in a time of crisis that carefully and rationally suggests unimaginably stupid things.
-Birds with teeth.
-Teeth with birds.
-With bird teeth.
-The unparalleled splendor and majesty of the dandelion.
-Any major landscape feature that contains smaller versions of itself like a matryoshka doll.
-The art of artlessness.
-Gob-smacked monkey’s uncles who get knocked down with a feather so easily it blows their socks off.
-Meagreness in excess.
-Itty-bitty deep sea life. Like, squinchy-winchy at best. Puny. Teensy. Minute.
-The pleasure of plesiosaurs.

A Concise History of the Earth.

Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

-The Hadean Eon
The Earth forms, but its distractible parents forget to note the date of birth. This will lead to many years of bitterness and more missed birthdays than are humanly imaginable.
Rock status: runny, excitable, prone to suddenly exploding.

-The Archaen Eon
The Earth grows the hell up and starts trying to apply itself so it can make something later on in life. It tries its hand at biology and makes some small prokaryotic projects, but it’s embarrassed by their lack of a proper nucleus and hides them under its enormous cratonic bed. Later it flushes everything with water and tries to make a fresh start of it for the fossil records.
Rock status: growing up, settling down, forming tectonic plates, wearing ties in public.

-The Proterozoic Eon
Through incredible amounts of both luck and time, life appears in the fossil record in its most boring, least-pronounceable forms. It promptly suffers stage fright and attempts to hide for the next half-billion years until helpful and outgoing cyanobacteria supply sufficient oxygen for some of the rest to get over themselves and try this new multicellular thing. They immediately graze cyanobacteria to near-extinction.
Rock status: forming continents, breaking up continents, combining, dividing, combining, dividing, suffering hysterical panic attacks in the mirror while scrutinizing hairlines.

-The Phanerozoic Eon
The last-ninth of Earth’s history, but also the only bits most people care about. The planet is overcome with an infestation of crawling, swimming, splashing, leaping, Skyping, narcissistic little bastards that come and go as breezily as a twister in an air-conditioned wind farm. Thankfully nearly all of them are dead or dying; unfortunately they started out that way and haven’t managed to improve since.
Rock status: combining, dividing, combining, dividing, sobbing into breakfast whiskey, combining, dividing, being split into little chips and used to murder mammoths, being stuffed into a tiny intricate mechanism and used to light cigarettes.

–The Paleozoic Era.
Earth’s lifeforms go through a teething period, attempting in rapid succession to consume rocks, volatile chemicals, sunlight, and each other. The lattermost method looks the coolest, so it gets the most attention, leaving its more productive, risk-averse siblings to suffer the fate of living relatively safe and prosperous lives while it continually attempts to choke itself into submission.
—The Cambrian Period: Named for its delicious, creamy, surface-ripened geological formations, the Cambrian saw the oceans of the world go from quiet bacterial vats to bustling, thriving basins of absolutely horrifying multicellular life. A randomly-selected handful from any given sponge-reef would make an arachnophobic shit themselves through their shoes. It was that bad. Thankfully, many of these diverse and appalling organisms managed to destroy the lush microbial mats that dotted the seafloor through burrowing, thus mangling their ecosystems beyond the bounds of recovery and putting themselves out of business and also life.
Life status: trilobites trilobites trilobites trilobites trilobites trilobites trilobites.
—The Ordovician Period: Hideous little things like crabs crossed with ticks crossed with scorpions go on the downswing and are supplemented with giant evil squids adorned with shells. Fish attempt to make themselves known, get eaten, and set to work to developing jaws so they can eat people back. Some of them will ditch bones in a fit of pique and become sharks.
Life status: largely boneless, scuttling, crunchy with a soft interior. Also largely trilobites.
—The Silurian Period: Life makes a break for the land in a desperate attempt to avoid touching anything in the ocean any longer than necessary, is immediately followed by scorpions, centipedes, millipedes. There is no hope and no god. Sea scorpions and leeches appear in an eager attempt to one-up this.
Life status: worse than death.
—The Devonian Period: The placoderm bony fish perfect the jaw and begin to use it on absolutely everything, tearing a hole through the Devonian ecosystem you could wedge a bus through. Sharks complain about this and are summarily eaten in vast numbers, leading to the origin of the superorder’s famed grouchiness. Some molluscs see the way the wind is blowing and shove themselves into tiny armoured shells, becoming ammonites and serving as inspiration for the development of the modern smartcar. In a surprise upset every single placoderm perishes without dignity at the Devonian’s end, leaving us only with some of the most utterly menacing giant bony skulls known to science and a latent suspicion of seafood.
Life status: ambitious, perfidious, amphibious.
—The Carboniferous Period: Amphibians snuck onto land when nobody was looking and are now running around the confused arthopods doing victory laps and eating them alive. Low sea levels and the newfangled fad of ‘bark’ lead to enormous swamps full of wood that is too sturdy and stubborn to rot properly, instead choosing to be painfully buried and macerated into coal over hundred of billions of years for the purposes of granting future species an opportunity at assisted suicide. Trilobites are in the shitter but still kicking up a stink. Reptiles show up and cannot possibly pose any sort of change in the status quo.
Life status: founding the backbone of Kentucky’s economy.
—The Permian Period: Swamps everywhere dry up and reptiles and mammal-like reptiles eat everyone else’s lunch, starting with the amphibians’ and laughing all the way to the bank and back and then back to the bank again and back again and then one more time just because the laughing really isn’t getting old yet. Then in a surprise upset a sudden and horrific incident annihilates nearly every living thing on earth, including the last of the trilobites, and everyone pauses for thirty million years to reload and catch their breath a little.
Life status: whacked.

–The Mesozoic Era. Life’s mid-life crisis. A series of desperate attempts at embracing bigger as better lead to a second bout of total disaster and a relapse into alcoholic despair. But the weather is really nice.
—The Triassic Period: Icthyosaurs and pterosaurs appear because reptiles have decided that merely dominating freshwater and the land was not enough. Mammal-like reptiles get back on their feet and start wobbling around making funny faces at the other reptiles and taking swings. While they’re busy, dinosaurs and mammals appear and begin to slowly and systematically shove their feet in every doorcrack. Before anyone can do anything about this, something murders almost everyone again.
Life status: blue-balled.
—The Jurassic Period: Dinosaurs take over everything of any importance on land and proceed to live high on the hog despite the nonexistence of hogs because that is just the sort of organisms they were. The largest land animals ever to exist are commissioned during this period and its successor, the largest land carnivores follow suit, violence is huge, blood is the new red, and the film rights are given to some bearded guy who looked like he knew what he was doing.
Life status: humungous.
—The Cretaceous Period: The photogenicity of life reaches its apex, along with its taste in excellent names. Every other thing on the planet is either over forty feet long, has teeth like bananas, a brain like a banana, or most frequently all three. Pride of place goes to Tyrannosaurus rex, who possessed an excellent name, a photogenic smile, a forty-foot-plus frame, a brain like a really big banana, and teeth like serrated bananas, all in a time well before bananas even existed. There is simply not that kind of get up and go nowadays and there will not be again because during this particular period something the size of Manhattan slammed into the Yucatan and demolished nearly all of the things on Earth that were considered interesting.
Life status: suddenly much smaller.

–The Cenozoic Era. Life’s comeback tour, following the realization that if all things are fleeting then so is failure. Its shirt is back on, its hair has been trimmed, its old pants fit again, and the gig tonight is looking packed. It’s got some new tricks it wants to try, like seeing what happens if it tries making stuff really smart for a change. It’s got a good feeling about this.
—The Palaeogene Period: Suddenly free from being accidentally stepped on for the first time in two hundred million years, mammals make a mad dash for every single habitat available, trying and somehow succeeding at occupying them all at once –carnivores, herbivores, omnivores, large, small, medium, breadbox-sized, and more. Some of them are in such a hurry that they jump into the ocean and swipe several old marine reptile niches right from out of the faces of sharks. The sharks respond to this by eating them, because the nice thing about being a shark is that you may not have many solutions to your problems but they tend to work pretty well.
Life status: topsy-turvy.
—The Neogene Period: The world, now once again full of stuff, continues to swirl it around like a man with a mouthful of Listerine. Seasonality reaches the point where regular snowfalls are inflicted upon mammals, who sort of lucked out in already having the concept of ‘fur’ down pat two hundred million years earlier. Speaking of which, some silly chucklefucks in Africa got rid of theirs and started running around bolt-upright buck-naked and hurting their backs.
Life status: in a dangerous time.
—The Quaternary Period: Don’t ask, okay?

How to make a really good omelette.

Wednesday, December 11th, 2013

-1 Egg: chicken, turkey, duck, emu, ostrich, roc, simurgh, phoenix, dragon, dinosaur (therapods only), sturgeon, pelican, monotreme, or gorilla.
-1 Eggbeater: standard stainless steal, old-fashioned cast-iron, old man with cane, whip, whipper-snapper, swordcane, secret squirrel technique, length of rubber hose, belt, board with a nail in it, or slim jim.
-1 Block of cheese: the good stuff, like cheddar, mozzarella, Mussolini, linoleum, Roquefort, Stilton, stuntman, 1001 Knock-Knock Jokes, or an elderly cow.
-1 Place to stand: you can’t cook an omelette on thin air. This sort of thing demands firm-footed heads-on-your-shoulders no-nonsense steady-handed concentration. Keep both feet on the ground at all times during omelette preparation. If you have to move, shuffle. It’s only for a few minutes, you big baby.
-1 Set of digits: fingers will do for a pinch, tentacles if you’re feeling saucy, or pinions, or talons, or whatever. Just so long as you’ve got a few of them. You’ll need those or that egg’ll just sit there and sulk in the pan, and good luck cracking it with your toes, unless toes are your digits of choice in which case well done. What if you’ve got no toes either? Well then you’re up shit creek, and there’s no omelettes up that particular stream, my friend. One word: digits.
-1 Onion: green or any other colour really, doesn’t matter. Just something like an onion. In an emergency, a picture of an onion can substitute for an onion but only if you are sufficiently hungry to believe that this is true.
-1 Or more really overbearing personalities: start at ‘radio host’ and work your way up.
-1 God or more: any that suits your fancy but preferably one with at least a little bit of localized omnipotence and at least one really satisfying thing to blaspheme about.
-1 Clock: should use time. Clocks that do not use time are not very good at making omelettes. If your clock is used to track space, colours, moods, temperatures, or hurt feelings, you should consider replacing it before you make an omelette.
-1 Keen eye, maybe more: you want to be able to see what you’re doing. And besides, what’s the most important bit of an omelette? The first thing you do? That’s right, it’s cracking the eggs. You’ve got to see the right spot to crack. You need that. Eyes. Either.
-1 Flippy object: not anything that flips around a lot, just something that’s good at flipping other things. More flexible than acrobatic, made of something bendy that won’t bite you when you touch it.
-1 Cooking platform: some sort of pan, rock, piece of bark, split thighbone (your own not recommended), giant eyeball (ibid), glass sheet, fan blade, sword, chunk of armour, or other handy flat-ish thing to spread an egg on and get some serious ommlettry underway.
-1 Cookbook: printed on paper, vellum, papyrus, bark (birch is nice), giant stone tablets weighing up to forty tons, tattoos, digital media, digital tattoos, or whatever.
-1 Burning thing: anything that’ll get a really good long scorch going and set in deep to the bone. Something fulsome yet channeled tightly, of grand depth yet slight breadth, aching yet fierce. A charrer that will not crumple, a crackler that will not squeak. Electrical, incendiary, magmatic, explosive, atomic, microwavable, propulsive, or chemical. Something that takes life and fries it ‘till it’s gone. Something that eats up the whole world if it’s taken far enough. You want that.
-1 Upbringing: any kind will do as long as it contains a point in your life that brings you into proximity with the concept of the omelette as a food item. This is very important. How to invent an omelette is a separate recipe and one that will not be covered in this recipe.
-1 Fierce and insatiable hunger: a literal hunger, not a metaphorical one. Those don’t channel themselves into skillfully applied cookery. A thirst, literal or figurative, is not the same thing and should not be used when making omelettes.
-1 Assistant: should be chosen carefully, with an eye to the long-term. Any fool can watch a clock and bleat the time-to-flip. You need someone you can count on. Someone with a passion for omelettes. Or someone with a vulnerability you can use to coerce them into it, like blood ties or a high-profile drug habit or a happy loving family that they would love to see grow old alongside them, carefree and smiling in the sunset of their days.
-1 Will, unbreakable: not merely unbendable, or unyielding. Those are the stainless steels of wills to the titanium we seek; the cubic zirconia to our diamonds; the pyrite to our gold; the flash in the pan to our thunderbolt in the eye. This omelette will not be accomplished without hard choices, and hard choices need harder men. You want to crumble apart like feta cheese at the first juncture? No? Then grow a will you could crack coconuts on, would-be-chef, and don’t come back ‘till that sucker’s hard as a rod.
-1 Tongue, minimum: what, you’re going to cook this thing up and then not even bother to enjoy it? Hedonism is an important part of the omelette experience. You can’t make an omelette without eyes, you can’t eat an omelette without a tongue. In both cases there are obvious technical exceptions, but the hypothetical situations in which the rule is stretched only prove its point – they are hollow, devoid of satisfaction, of light, of hope, of life itself. Don’t make this mistake. Don’t try to be a special snowflake. We are all the same deep down inside ourselves, and that is because we all just want to really eat the hell out of something and never stop tasting it. It’s basically the automatically installed OS on the hard-drives of our brains: eat things, eat good things, never stop eating things forever and ever amen yes sir.
-1 Pound of grit: either mineral or ground-corn style. The former can be used to scrub out the pan after the omelette is made, the latter can be eaten alongside it. In a pinch, either can substitute for the other’s roles.
-1 Figure of moral support: we both know this omelette is going to get serious before it’s over. We went over this, unbreakable will, determination you could mince cattle atop, yadda yadda yadda. But look, even the most iron-eyed stone-souled steel-spined badasses need someone to lean on when things get stuff. Get some help. Get someone whose shoulder you can cry on when things turn blue and you don’t dare show the world your doubts and fears. A mother is nice, or a father. If said family members are unsympathetic and/or dead just pull out a copy of your family tree and start checking immediate kin in a counter-clockwise direction until you hit someone with enough free time or a low price or preferably both.
-1 Note: a message for anyone nearby in case your omelette is interrupted (by appointment, unexpected company, fire, violent insurrection, world war, suicide). Keep it short and snappy. Brevity is the soul of wit, and simplicity its heart and mind. For further information in case this comes up on your randomly-generated post-omelette questionnaire: brevity’s lungs are briefness, its liver is velocity, its left and right kidneys are acceleration and promptness (respectively), and its colon is truncated.
-1 Backup: of whatever of the above vital ingredients you think is most likely to fail you without warning. It’s not so hard, just take whatever you’re feeling antsy about and get another. The omelette’ll wait, there’s no sense in rushing into this sort of thing half-cocked. Be careful.

Once you’ve got all your ingredients together, just concentrate. The rest will come together surprisingly quickly. If you experience any problems in the process, destroy ingredients and bystanders at random until the problems cease. Remember, you can’t make an omelette without breaking a few legs.