Wednesday, October 18, 2017

I'm officially a published author now...

...kinda. Online. The point is, somebody I don't know read something I wrote and liked it enough to publish it for me.

Click that link, right there under these words. I wrote that article. Man, I sure crack myself up.

Everything I Hate About My Favorite Movie, Frozen

You went too far. Click the link above these words.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Mortal agony

Oh wow. Oh man... oh boy, did that ever SUCK. Tonight I suffered a mortal stomach agony for the very first time while I was up and motile, and not lying prone after having just awakened. Before tonight, they've always crept up on me early in the morning, waking me up with increasing nausea that finally transmogrifies into a mortal agony. I've always felt safe and shielded, knowing that mortal agonies only have power during one very narrow slice of my temporal physiology. Not anymore, I guess.

I was walking home from WinCo, listening to really, really loud music, when the nausea began to come on. That's not necessarily unusual, but it's definitely unpleasant and inconvenient. I was crossing the Baptist Church parking lot on Malone when it started. I stopped near the baseball field near the high school and tried to throw up, and that's when the pain began to creep up. I was still a quarter mile from home. I tried to throw up so that I'd get that little burst of feeling ok in order to brace me for the remainder of the walk home, but I couldn't make it happen. I stood up and hurried on my way.

Oh, it just got worse and worse, exactly like I was terrified that it would. I started to sweat. Nothing makes you sweat in rivulets like mortal agony, and nothing makes you pray out loud in desperation like some more mortal agony piled on top of mortal agony. As I staggered and lurched, I passed Friday night party goers here and there, and I wondered with a small, sequestered piece of my awareness what they must have thought of this man struggling along and doubled over, moaning 'Oh God it hurts so bad, Lord have mercy, Lord have mercy', over and over.

I finally reached my compartment complex and somehow made it up the stairs. When I got inside, I collapsed onto my mattress. The pain immediately began to relent. Oh man, I just cried myself to sleep with tears of relief.

That was about three hours ago. When I woke up, the stench of stale sweat was ubiquitous. I was actually hungry, which was hard to believe. I nuked a TV dinner and here I am. I think it's time to sleep again, now. I hope I don't wake up again to mortal agony, part 2.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Oh, it's just a... sad, pathetic tale of whoa.

Preface - lots of cussing coming up. I've cooled off a little since all this shit happened (whoops, pardon my Klingon) and I'm now a teensy bit more, less, emotional. Thus my presence of mind to include this warning. So. On with the shitshow.
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Man am I pissed off... oh, so pissed off! Mighty pissed off! You'd be pissed off too, if you had to inhabit this creaky, rotten, son-of-a-bitchin wretched miserable corrupted and fucked up meat machine that I have wrapped around me 24/7!

Is that not clear enough? Is my meaning not seeping through in a satisfactory manner, like some kind of putrid osmosis? Well then, let me get more concise! I can do that, yeah!

Here's what happened. Just about 30 minutes ago, I was walking along and singing a song. Just the happiest bird in the world, tooling along down the avenue, not bothering anybody. Content for a rare couple of seconds. I almost felt like skipping! Isn't that fucking stupid? Yeah! I actually almost felt like skipping!

Ash... you retarded idiot! You teensy weensy, tiny whiney, pee-waddling little man!  An instant of bliss is EXPENSIVE, DUMBASS!

Anyway.

Then you wanna know what happened next? Huh? Do you? Huh? Do ya do ya do ya? Are you hanging onto the edge of your seat, waiting for the other shoe to drop, right square on top of my gonads? Right there, in the middle of my testes? Are you ready for that great big merciless stomp that completely smashes my nuts? That's what you're waiting to hear, aren't you? I know, I know! That's all you wanna hear about! You just want to fast-forward to the part where my balls get demolished! You wanna fast forward to that part? To where my testicles get pulverized?

Who wants to get to the good part? I do! Let's go! Yee-Haw! Okay, let's fast forward to the part where I get sterilized by a jackboot!

Like I said awhile ago, I was just walking along, singing a song, thinking about nothing in particular. I probably had a stupid little grin plastered across my face, and my eyes were probably rolled up in this vague little gesture of contemplation about nothing in particular. Why, I might have been scratching my butt. Maybe I was smelling my finger. I could have been picking my nose. It's possible that a little drool could have been escaping my jaw. It was one of those almost perfect existential moments, you know? It was too good to be allowed to exist, because, fuck you, Ash! And that's when my right ankle decided to just up and say YAWN! ::: stretch::: g'nite, asshole, and then it just went BPPPHHTHHBBBTTHHHH!!!

I'm talking about my pristine, uninjured right ankle, not my recently recovered from a twist left ankle! That's my RIGHT ankle, just up and deciding to fuck off to the Blue Hills because it's funny! Tell me that's not premeditated.

Well, I shouldn't have to say that I of course went tumbling, ass over teakettle, and pain was involved. Pain, which quickly transmogrified into blinding white rage. Rage at the injustice. Rage at the scheming. Rage at the mutiny. Rage at the distrust of my body of the captainship of my own mind. Rage at the rage of the rage toward the rage at the rage from the rage of the rage. RAGE! Rage at the word rage because it sounds retarded!

Ok, I'm getting sidetracked by the pure, seething, retarded rage. Whatever, who cares. I survived the tumble and nothing expensive got broken! Fuck you, me! You hear you, me? Fuck me, you!

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!?!!

And now everything is all okay again.

:)

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

An introduction to The Nonplussed by Anon

The Nonplussed

An Introduction
by
Anon
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     Hi! I don't have a name, but you can think of me as Storyteller, because that's what I do. What kind of stories do I tell, you might be wondering? Well, true stories would probably be the most basic way to describe them. Whoops... hold that thought! I know what you're probably thinking, and the most basic way to describe the stories I tell would be, ah... biographies. Kinda. I don't tell the stories of single individuals, though. I tell the stories of entire civilizations. Maybe 'historical accounts' would be more accurate?

     Ok, here it is... the purpose I've tasked myself with is the preservation of the memory of Universal Civilization, which means learning the stories of every civilization that exists or has ever existed, and recording those stories for posterity. But as stories, as opposed to a simple recitation of facts.

     Now you're probably wondering where I get my source material. Right? Mostly I just take what a civilization has already recorded as their own history and use my own words to turn it into a story that's way more interesting. Don't worry, nobody cares. A lot of these civilizations are already dead, you know.

     Ok, now that that's been explained... first things first. What follows is the true story of a recently discovered civilization of uniquely intelligent creatures, known to themselves (mostly) as humans. That's just the most common word they use for self reference as a species... there are many, many, many more, a few of which are: humankind, human beings, humanity, homo sapiens, terrans, earthlings, dirtlings, earthmen, man, men, mankind, the people, the folk, the fallen, all God's children, children of Adam, children of Cain, children of Abraham, children of Sol, children of the sun, the Earth's gonads, hairless apes, cro-magnons, troglodytes, super simians, mighty mammals, carbon units, ugly bags of mostly water, mostly harmless, the Nonplussed, and dozens more names for their collective selves in even more dozens of different languages. Isn't that strange? Well, they're a strange race, as you'll soon discover for yourself, if you choose to continue reading.

     By the way. This is a story about humans, of humans, and for humans, so If you're reading this and you're not human then it probably won't make any sense to you at all. You can still read it if you want to, though. Maybe you'll like it, who knows... but I doubt it. You'll probably just want to file it away somewhere and get on with your totally gross and disgusting alien business. That's probably what a human would say.

     However! If you're human, and I really hope that you are, then I recommend that you continue reading because this is YOUR story! It's all about human beings, just like you - smart, retarded, hilarious, insane, evil, benevolent, funny looking, socially inept, miserable, deliriously happy, beautiful, disgusting people - plus a few really exceptional ones thrown in here and there. Statistical anomalies, you know.

     You may be wondering (if you're human)... what right do I have to tell your story? If you're that disgusting alien again, this isn't your story so shut up. I've read your story and it's disgusting. Go bother what's his face - he's the one who had the stomach and the will to actually write your disgusting story. If I were a human, I mean, that's what I would have said.

     Anyway, sorry about that, human sir or miss. The reason why I have a right to tell your story is because I discovered it, and having been the one of my kind who discovered it, I'm now obligated to tell it, because a story exists to be told, and I'm a storyteller. Logical, no? Plus, it's just a stroke of luck that your story happens to suit my preferred telling style, because I'm naturally inclined to look at things from an angle of absurdity. And you guys... well. What can I say? I love you guys.

     I really hope there are some humans around to hear this, your story. It would be a crying shame if it turned out that, after all of this, your civilization never made it across the threshold, because your species is truly a rare gem - an idiot savant civilization, to borrow one of your metaphors - and a brightly shining diamond in a galaxy filled mostly with toys and trinkets. I often wonder if a species like yours can ever truly understand its worth as it takes that purposeful step over the threshold and into oblivion, laughing all the way... you know, I just can't stress it enough, how rare a phenomenon it is that you and yours represent. I truly hope you've survived, and I say that with all seriousness and against my better judgement.

     You're also probably wondering (if you're human) just what the heck is up with that threshold I've mentioned two or three times now. To all of the disgusting aliens following along with my narrative - stop interrupting! Everybody knows that you all survived your own disgusting thresholds, and I'm not sorry to say that I'm sorry that you did! So either shut up and listen, or go fuck off and die! That's the last time I'm gonna tell you all. I'm sorry, humans, for cursing. Those damn aliens...

     My apologies again for the interruption, senors and senoras. Please allow me to continue. You see, the thing with the threshold is... well, it's like a... a point of no return, or more like a line of no return. No... well. I mean, yeah. Those are metaphors, the point and the line, meaning a crucial place in your own story where the collective mentality of your entire species loses its mind. Don't worry, it happens to every intelligent species throughout the universe that develops a technological civilization. It's natural, see. It's just that it's so... odd, that you guys actually made it that far as a civilization... that you became capable of going insane. It's rare, as I've said, and even rarer with an idiot savant civilization, like yours. The rarest of civilizations. Do you understand now how you make the galaxy shine? We all love you and we're rooting for you! We just hope you didn't fuck it all up at the threshold.

     So! Are you (if you're human) ready to embark upon a fast and furious adventure filled with action and intrigue, festooned with heroic deeds of derring-do, performed by the common man against withering odds? An adventure that's going to end in tears for everyone? If you're human, then the culmination of your story either begins here or ends here - at the threshold. If you're still that disgusting alien, just go away already.

     Once again, please accept my apologies. If you've survived to read this, then hopefully you'll understand that the universe is filled mostly with disgusting aliens. So sayeth would the human.


****rough summary follows****

     Anyway, here I've compiled a quick rundown of the global events which comprise the story describing the deterioration of your collective mental condition as a global civilization. Revisions may be necessary, but please accept this rough draft, for now.

     In 2019 North Korea nukes Antarctica to destroy American morale by taking out Santa Claus (based on faulty intelligence) which triggers a larger nuclear skirmish involving the entire Middle East and parts of Asia, with everybody calling dibs on the batters box at the same time. It only took four days to transform Mumbai, New Delhi, Karachi, Islamabad, Mecca, Cairo, Damascus, Tehran, Baghdad, Pyongyang, Seoul, Tel Aviv and Jerusalem into a bunch of radioactive, crater shaped mirrors smoking in the desert. With most Muslims somewhere in the upper atmosphere, the United States declares an end to The War on Terror, and immediately starts sniffing around for something else to wage war upon.

     Since it's long been established that when the United States wages war on something, that it absolutely does not go to war on that thing, but instead just spends billions of dollars to make it look like it it did, so it also was that after winning the War on Terror, the United States declared a new war - the War on Nuclear War. The defense budget was immediately quintupled and spent on fast tracking the development, production and immediate dismantling of 50,000 brand new, 500 megaton PlanetBuster bombs, which really, really pissed off the state of Georgia when the other 49 States just kind of chucked the bill for all of it onto Atlanta's doorstep.

     The world-wide cold snap resulting from the nuclear skirmish of 2021 effectively negates global warming - which is finally revealed simply to have been an elaborate SNL skit concocted by AL Franken that had 'gotten out of hand'. Sea levels rise by five meters, as nuking Antarctica causes the Western Antarctic ice shelf to fall into the ocean. Figuring that the worst effects of global warming went ahead and happened anyway, the carbon footprint is quadrupled by a world no longer concerned with greenhouse gas emissions. After almost two decades it's becoming clear that global warming is a thing again, and this time it's for realsies.

     In 2034 the Goolsby administration declares a War on Global Warming and orders the development and construction of a freeze ray to freeze the moon in order to halt the effects of moonlight on global warming at a cost of trillions of dollars. It's referred to secretly as 'The Two Dog Night Light Project'.

     Do you see what I mean about you guys going insane?

     Georgia refuses to foot the bill for the freeze ray and secedes as the Confederate State of Soviet Georgia in 2041.

     See?

     In 2041 the aircraft carrier carrier USS Donald Trump is launched, carrying an arsenal of aircraft carriers and 1000 planetbusters to make a statement to Georgia.

     See? See?

     The Flying Turtle is launched, the first interplanetary space vessel with a practical EM drive.

     The Two Dog Night Light is launched aboard the Flying Turtle.

     Civil war ensues between the US and the CSSG in 2042.

     Russia allies with the CSSG.

     WWIII is imminent, until Bobby Kay Rudolph, an American physicist working at The Larger Hadron Collider, opens a rift to the Eleventeenth dimension of the Far Flung Hunger by smashing martini molecules together at light speed.

     Emperor Cannibalus the Starvling invades the solar system.

     Isn't that funny?

                           *****************

The events of The Nonplussed occur as the human race approaches a critical threshold of social and technological development and population density as a civilization. Upon crossing this threshold, Mankind collectively goes insane as a species, and will either survive the inevitable trauma of the ensuing chaos or destroy itself; if not as a species, then as a civilization. This is a natural occurrence in the development of all intelligent races throughout the universe which achieve a technological civilization - some survive; most do not. North Korea is the first example of the collective insanity taking hold as Mankind crosses over the threshold. By the time Trump is elected president of the United States in 2016, the entire world is joining in, and by 2041, Humanity as a surviving species is well on its way to hell in a hand basket.

CANNIBALUS THE STARVLING

Then the truly unexpected and impossible improbable occurs. An American particle physicist and drunken alcoholic without any shits left to give proves the pseudoscientific theory which ruined her career by openening a gateway to a parallel universe, purely by accident, and at billions to one odds by slamming the hair of the dog into itself at light speed using the Largest Hadron Collider, a particle accelerator which spans the globe at the equator. An entity known to itself as Cannibalus the Starvling emerges through the gateway from its own realm, which it calls The Far Flung Hunger, and into our universe. It takes the form of a petulant child, about eight years of age, and declares to all information processing systems, machine and organic - from a virus to a thermostat to a termite to an 8 bit game console to a supercomputer to a dog to the advanced AI imbedded in the global internet, and finally to humanity - in an all reaching, all demanding, all encompassing, supremely peurile, infinitely self absorbed, ear splitting, mind shattering declaration - that it is STARVLING, and that it expects LUNCHEON, and it's looking to US to provide it.

THE METHOD

My brain hasn't discovered this part yet.

The Nonplussed - a timeline of Trump's War

The Long Madness gestates.

2016 - Donald Trump is elected President.

2017 - Tensions escalate between North Korea and the US as North Korea successfully detonates a hydrogen bomb.

2018 - Trump uses Twitter to provoke Kim Jong Un (see attachment).

2018 - Kim Jong Un promises to 'utterly destroy' the United States (see attachment).

2018 - Trump orders the Navy to steal back the USS Pueblo and leaves one of his personal yachts in its place (see attachment).

2018 - North Korea declares war on the United States and threatens to 'utterly destroy the heart and soul of America' if the United States doesn't surrender immediately.

2018 - Trump orders a surgical strike on the Pyong Yang Hotel and destroys it.

2018, December 25th - Kim Jong Un launches a nuclear strike on the South Pole and threatens to destroy Easter Island next unless the United States surrenders immediately.

2019, January 1st - Trump informs Kim Jong Un via Twitter that Santa Claus lives at the North Pole, not the South Pole, and that Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny are children's myths that never existed to begin with.

2019 - Dennis Rodman is assassinated by North Korean agents for providing faulty intelligence.

2019 - Trump fires Kim Jong Un, declares North Korea null and void, and replaces the entire nation with Virtual North Korea, on online reality show with the winner at the end of the season becoming the new Dear Leader of North Korea. Trump urges all nations to participate under pain of nuclear annihilation.

2019 - The United Nations Security Council declares President Trump insane and urges worldwide sanctions against the United States until somebody does something about Donald Trump.

2020 - Donald Trump declares himself King of the World.

2020 - Lieutenant Colonel Dempsey Witt and Staff Sargent Ferlin Goolsby, United States Army, orchestrate a coup to oust President Trump. Ferlin betrays Dempsey. Dempsey chooses to abandon an almost certainly successful coup, at the cost of his own life, to save his skin. He regrets it... oh how he regrets it.

2020 - The West Antarctic Ice Sheet, weakened by the thermonuclear attack by North Korea in 2018, falls into the ocean, causing worldwide sea levels to rise by five meters. All coastal cities are destroyed and hundreds of millions of people die.

2021 - The Mediterranean Sea floods several Middle East Nations. Nuclear war inevitably breaks out due to widespread confusion, panic, and lack of communication. The entire Middle East, including 90% of the world Muslim population, is destroyed. The entire world now officially hates North Korea more than Donald Trump.

2021 - King Donald Trump abdicates the throne to himself as President Trump and declares Kim Jong Un as the winner of the reality show thing, and the brand new Dear Leader of North Korea. North Korea digs underground.

2021 - President Trump declares and end to the War on Terror, due to the practical death of Islam via nuclear annihilation, and immediately declares a new War on Nuclear War and orders the production of 50,000 brand new 500 megaton thermoquantum planetbuster bombs, and then presents Georgia with the 6 trillion dollar bill as forced restitution for hosting the attempted coup. He then orders the immediate dismantling of 49,000 of the new 500 megaton thermoquantum planetbusters, in accordance with the War on Nuclear War disarmament treaty, in accordance with the entire world.

2022 - Global warming is revealed to have been a hoax all along by Al Franken, who says the whole thing began with a Saturday Night Live skit that 'kinda got outta hand', as he put it.

2023 - Al Gore commits suicide.

The Long Madness begins.

2041 - This is where the book starts, officially. Everything before this is just introductory exposition.

Attachment

Donald Trump provokes Kim Jong Un
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Trump tweets: 'What was that noise? Oh. Just boys playing with toys. Be careful Kim, you could put an eye out with that thing!'

Kim Jong Un promises swift retribution upon the United States.

Trump tweets: '@ Kim - You say swift, but could you please hurry it up a little? Our aircraft carriers and nuclear attack subs and AEGIS equiped destroyers and dozens of nuclear armed Predator drones are getting tired of lollygagging right off of your coastline with impunity, month after month.'

Kim Jong Un threatens the United States with total annihilation.

Trump tweets: 'lol Good luck with that, Kimberly.'

Kim Jong Un promises to visit a nuclear hellfire upon the United States.

Trump tweets: '@ Kim - Go ahead, gourd head.'

Kim Jong Un promises to unleash such devastation upon the United States as to wipe it utterly from the surface of the Earth.

Trump tweets: '@ Kim - Uh, were you homeschooled or something?'

Kim Jong Un's cyber warfare department hacks President Trump's Twitter account and deletes it.

President Trump retaliates by stealing the USS Pueblo while North Korea is asleep, leaving a fully loaded, 50 foot cabin cruiser in its place.

Monday, July 17, 2017

The Nonplussed - an excerpt



Dreyfuss struggled to stay upright despite the agonizing withdrawals wracking his body. It had been ten days since his last shot of the demon's special brand of heroin, and the withdrawals weren't letting up... if anything they were getting worse. He hadn't believed it when Ignatius told him that withdrawals from demon dust were permanent and only got worse until you died from the pain, but now he was beginning to wonder.

Pain had long since become the status quo, and it was a simple thing for Dreyfuss to imagine the restructuring of his own perceptions of joy and misery by simply bumping his current level of misery up to baseline. Not great, not bad... just ok. He would be ok if he just believed hard enough that he was. He chanted it like a prayer as he walked... I'm ok (step), I'm ok (step), I'm ok (step)... over and over, until the hours and the miles and the steps all blurred together into a long, gray smear.

It was inside that interminable gray mantra that Dreyfuss became aware of a kind of slowing down of his misery. It wasn't decreasing; it was just slowing down, way down, like it was winding down until it finally just stopped. It hadn't disappeared; it was still there, but it wasn't coursing through him anymore. It had become a thing of apathy as well as misery, and Dreyfuss was able to be still inside of it and almost... comfortable.

Dreyfuss experienced a dim kind of surprise to understand that he really had redefined the status quo, as pain had apparently been promoted from a hated enemy to a merely unpleasant roommate. He stumbled mentally at the sudden realization and then fell across a brand new epiphany... everything grew out of the good. The good was the foundation which supported the universe, and nothing could survive without the good, and nothing could exist without the good. Everything relied upon the good - even the bad. No matter how hidden or obscured or seemingly nonexistent, the good was still there. The simple fact of even a miniscule presence of the good, if looked at and concentrated on hard enough, made for such a laughingly, obviously unfair game for the bad, that Dreyfuss almost felt sorry for Ignatius.

The sudden realization of such a simple truth was so funny that Dreyfuss laughed out loud... and then immediately dropped to his knees, felled by the worst pain of his life, right at the bottom of his guts. It was far worse than a mortal agony - it was an immortal agony, a never ending agony meant to inspire infinite despair, but he couldn't stop laughing,.. and with each involuntary guffaw the incredible, indescribably mind blowing torment increased by an order of magnitude, over and over... and over, again. And again. And again...

In the throes of such torment, everything outside of it had become meaningless. There was no awareness, not of himself or of the passage of time. The all encompassing agony had reduced him to something less than human; less even than an animal. A totality of pain had thoroughly sequestered his awareness and cast him, trussed and tied with heavy, white hot iron chains, into an ocean of suffering. Dreyfuss had one last cogent thought, followed by a swell of empathy, before the ocean swallowed him... Ignatius. Why does it always piss him off when I can't stop laughing at something? Poor Ignatius, poor Ignatius, poor Ignatius...

The ocean vomited him back up like a bad oyster. For an instant, Dreyfuss could feel it with all of his senses, the jerking away of it from him in all directions leaving a smoking, carbonized Dreyfuss-shaped husk that shattered into dust and then blew away. For an instant he was pain free, long enough to feel a brief moment of simple joy, before the pain came rushing back in to fill the vacuum. The return of pain was nothing compared to that brief joyful feeling, and with it came another epiphany. Dreyfuss suddenly understood that the purpose of his existence was to witness the universe, and the the universe existed to be witnessed. Nothing more. His suffering was a part of that circle of acknowledgement, merely necessary as a thing to be witnessed. It was his part. It was that simple. He thought:

'I'm just a sensory apparatus, evolved inside of a universe that wanted to get a look at itself... and in my case, a feel for itself. My opposite is out there somewhere too, my other experience... my joy is out there.'

With a new understanding came a brief lucidity, and Dreyfuss was able to isolate a small portion of his limited awareness and separate it from the agony, which had returned with a vengeance. With a tremendous effort, Dreyfuss PULLED his attention away from the pain, and toward the source of it... and what he discovered was such a shocking surprise that he almost lost the tenuous grip he'd gotten on himself, which very nearly sent him spinning back into the totality.

The shock was... the endless agony he was experiencing... it wasn't in his gut at all. It was in his balls! And it didn't even belong to him, it wasn't his pain, it belonged to that... demonic drug dealer, that... that motherfucker! Ignatius!

Suddenly Dreyfuss felt no more pain. Only pure relief. On his knees, he wept tears of joy and understood, with a clarity of understanding that only comes from viewing the structure of the universe through the eyes of the universe, that even if that little shit Cannibalus the Starvling pulled off his magick trick and crammed the Earth into a gaping, transdimensional maw of ever unsatisfied hunger, that it wouldn't matter because the opposite of an eternal starvation had been and always would be an eternal contentment! Dreyfuss knew that to be a truth, more than he'd ever known anything, ever. He knew it... he knew it!

Then Dreyfuss felt the pathetic remains of his physical withdrawals begin to finally break apart, like a thin coating of congealed bacon grease after a couple of seconds in the microwave. Underneath it he could see in his minds eye a vast ocean of clear, transparent water... clear, but somehow still a vibrant blue, and a glimpse of the eternity underneath. He was confused for a bare naked second until he realized that he wasn't looking down into the water. He was looking up through it, and into a pristine blue sky.

Beautiful.

Joy suffused his being, and Dreyfuss felt the essence of his self rising like an express elevator, up and up and up, impossibly fast... and on the way up, he caught a glimpse of Ignatius, as quick as a still-frame but as clear as a photograph. Ignatius was clutching his crotch, his face contorted in agony. Dreyfuss could even hear a faint, diminutive scream that dopplered away into quick oblivion as the demon fell, way way down and into hell, which sounded exactly like...

"OW, MY BAAAAAAALLS....... . .  .   .     ."

As he rose, faster and faster, Dreyfuss felt his awareness begin to shatter quietly as it fell upward and into a vast, gray bliss. He was surprised to experience no fear at all, only peace... and as he was finally near the end of his coming apart, the last thing Dreyfuss perceived was the voice of Purl Ashblaque, the gun-slinging grunge wizard, whispering an old Pearl Jam tune that used to be, way back when from before, and maybe after, too...

"I... Ooooh, I'm still ALIVE."

Then Dreyfuss felt the soft volumes of infinity enclose him, and a final memory of the pain that killed his body was what finally returned him to his his spirit, like an old friend coming home from the war.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

In search of the storm

Tonight, I went out in search of the storm, I guess, because that's all I had. Never mind... it's true.

Well, I sure as hell found it. Boy, did I ever get pounded. I got tangled up in a barbed wire fence trying to make it into the sparse shelter of a loose copse of trees, just as all hell was breaking loose.

I finally got all huddled down with my umbrella, down in there amongst the wet things and the fertile things and the rich things. How I huddled, for about 30 minutes. It was almost like being indoors, under those trees. But man, wasn't it hell raging outside.

Finally it started to let up, and I crept out from my enclosure, into an adjacent field. It was like a meadow in moonlight, except it was cloudlight. You know. Lowlight. Lowglow. Light bouncing around from cloud to ground and back up and down again.

It lit up everything. I could see the trees, right over there, where I'd been crouching. And I could see lightning flashing beyond the trees, through and behind them, with the intricate limbs and leaves of the copse outlined as black shapes in silver-blue fire, for an instant. That sight alone made getting drenched totally worth it, ten times over.

But now. I can't help but wonder... who all, if anyone, has ever seen a grassy field come back to life after a violent storm? I never have, or had, until tonight. What I'm talking about is the slow but increasing movement of a few bugs. One or two.  Then shake it up a little. Just shake it up, until it gets back to normal. The storm is over.

It was one of the most amazing things I've ever stopped purposefully to witness the happening of.

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Ow

Today was a singularly unique day and probably the most interesting day of my entire life, as far as brand new experiences go. It began pretty much the same way as any other day. Wake up sleep deprived and a couple of hours away from work with lots of cussing, then unpause last nights aloneliness distraction (Scent of a Woman, Al Pacino and Chris O'Donnel, 1992), then light a cigarette, walk to Kroger, the bank, blah blah blah, etc etc etc. I was happy to discover that I'd begun singing to myself almost exactly after I'd finished with the cussing, which was a good sign that my brain probably wasn't going to spend the day trying to choke the joy and hope out of me with its fresh, malignant tendrils of coiled and blackened hatred. So, yeah, today began on a promising note. I was only seven minutes late to work, and I felt like I was on a pretty good roll until 3:30 rolled around and then this started to happen:

The usual walnut sized knot of dull pain in the lower left portion of my back came awake,
yawned, stretched, and immediately began to twist and tighten into itself while at the same time growing its borders up to regulation baseball size, as if it were attempting to squeeze that part of my back into an infinitely dense singularity of pain. This process took place over the course of about thirty minutes, so by 4:00 a dark gray lump of unrelenting agony, about the size of a grapefruit, was nestled snugly, deep inside the natural bowl-shaped declivity of my pelvis and taking up so much new real estate that it actually felt closer to my guts than my back. What it was doing in there was pushing forward against the wall of my abdomen while twisting in all directions at once, especially inward, as if it were striving for a critical pain threshold which, if crossed, would cause the entirety of me to implode into that grapefruit-shaped region of my lower left abdomen, leaving a 155 pound bloody gobbet, approximately seven inches in diameter, twitching and pulsing behind register 1 in a rude and grotesque manner until it finally collapsed into an extremely dense oblate spheroid of bone, meat, blood, guts and brains, all pulped together into something with about the same consistency of vulcanized rubber.

By 4:30 the pain had become magnificent in its intensity. That's really the only word that comes close to describing those brand new heights of never before experienced agony - magnificent. Its quality was pure, its purpose unwavering, and its delivery was just... relentless, unbroken, and absolutely without mercy. It was an onslaught of mortal agony that just kept going and going and going and going and GOING. I couldn't even think because the experience of it completely devoured my attention, blurring my vision, and holding me in a kind of hellish thrall. For almost two hours I gripped the edge of the counter before me with white knuckles and shook uncontrollably, sweating like a lunatic, with absolutely every muscle in my body clenched up to maximum tension. I was lucky that during the entire happening of it business was extremely slow, and I only had to think above that unending wave of agony a mere handful of times, because doing that was simply... exhausting.

At about 5:45 it started to diminish, and by 6:00 it had become blissfully tolerable again. Still there, of course... but what a blessed relief it was, to experience regular old familiar pain. Good old just pain... never leave me again, please.

Friday, June 9, 2017

A skeleton of a story

I'm still thinking about this story that keeps evolving in my noggin, which I've named 'The Nonplussed'. 

A skeleton of a story is emerging slowly, from which I'll hopefully be able to hang all the fleshy bits that will give it a grotesque yet functional semblance of a thing which I'm hoping will possess the minimal amount of feeling required to support at least a vaguely accurate description of a narrative fired by the pulse of life absurd.

Here's the basic, bare bones skeleton.

Part 1 - The Nonplussed

This first part details the burgeoning insanity of mankind, beginning in 2016 with the election of Donald Trump as the leader of the free world, and culminating in 2021 when North Korea initiates a limited nuclear conflagration, resulting in the complete annihilation of the Middle East, plus the South Pole, causing the Western Antarctic Ice Shelf to fall into the worlds' oceans, and detailing the madness of mankind's collective reaction to the resulting worldwide devastation as sea levels rise by five meters.

Part 2 - Insanity Interrupted

This next part picks up twenty years after the nuclear skirmish of 2021. Earth is devastated by environmental collapse, the state of Georgia has seceded from the Union, Civil war erupts in America, Russia wants to get in on the action, and it looks like a full scale nuclear world war is imminent... until a drunken particle physicist opens a trans-dimensional doorway to another universe by smashing anti-martini molecules together at relativistic speeds with the Larger Hadron Collider - a particle accelerator which encircles the Earth at the equator. Cannibalus the Starvling of The Far Flung Hunger emerges from the resulting stable wormhole connecting our two universes, demanding LUNCHEON. After being subjected to several of its devastating tantrums, a totally pissed off and not entirely mentally stable Humanity goes to war with an extra-universal alien that manifests itself as a petulant 8 year old boy with god-like powers and an insatiable need to devour EVERYTHING.

Part 3 - This will all end in tears...

This final part describes how mankind - gripped in the throes of collective madness - utterly, and without mercy destroys the childlike alien demigod, Emperor Cannibalus the Starvling of The Far Flung Hunger, thereby saving the Infinite Multiverse from being consumed once and for all. And how it all ends in tears anyway, for everybody and everything, everywhere.

That's the skeleton of it. You know, it was way way WAY more of a pain in the ass than I ever thought it would be, just to come up with that vague outline. I think it could be a really kick-ass book though, if I actually wind up knowing how to do it.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Wednesday
May 24th, 2017
12:45 AM
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Dearest David...

Wulp, I guess you've fucked off for good, and I'm not a bit sorry to see you go, you slimy two-faced bastard.

Here's a fun fact:

Every time anyone ever talked disparagingly about you in front of me, do you know what I would always say? Here's what I always said, and I quote myself:

"Yeah, I can see where you're coming from, but I like David." - Ash

That's what I always said, and it was true, because despite everything I really did like you. It was hard NOT to like you. Sharing your lottery wins with me, working a double shift when I was sleep deprived so that I wouldn't have to work ANOTHER one, giving me neurontins, counting my drawer and taking out the cardboard boxes and even offering to work the entire shift by yourself because I was in so much pain... you actually had me feeling genuine gratitude toward you on multiple occasions. To think that there was this evil side to you!

I never would have suspected that the real reason you wanted truck nights was simply because you didn't want to work with me. I mean, that never even would have crossed my mind! What a surprise it was, to learn that.

I was also completely flabbergasted to understand that you could actually think that I'm faking this back pain. You fucker, I hope you catch a good dose of sciatica one day so that you can personally experience how excruciating it is.

Oh, and this next one was a bona-fide sucker punch... that you would suggest something so underhanded, so despicable, so downright sinister as a group conspiracy in the form of anonymous, slanderous letters to corporate in order to have me fired. Insidious! Anonymous letters consisting of what, by the way? You mean how I always gave you the benefit of the doubt after enduring every one of your tantrums? How I continually strove, again and again, to expand my tolerance of your... uh, ways... into a genuine sense of likability? Oh, wait. Was it the nerve, the audacity, the unmitigated GALL I demonstrated that one time when I apologized to you - that you refused to accept - and after which you proceeded to throw that grand mal tantrum? Or was it the time that you threw that neck-vein popping tantrum because I wouldn't submit to your opinion regarding abortion? Or were you just planning to make up a bunch of lies? Or...

Oh. Yeah, of course.

It was that one, single time that I pulled rank on you by telling you not to sell tobacco to that dude after I'd already refused to sell it to him and then you threw that capillary-shattering tantrum, wasn't it? That was it, right? Yeah, that was it, I'm sure of it. That's exactly the kind of mortal offense that your ginormous ego would have no choice but to judge as Unforgivable - being forced to occupy a subordinate role to my position of seniority. I guess the only appropriate response to such an egregious offense (including whatever other infantile grudges you might be nursing) - according to your warped little mind - is revenge, pure and evil.

There are a lot of ways to describe a coward who presents a benign facade to someone, while at the same time contriving to plan a sneak attack from a safe distance:

Scum
Bottom feeder
Sleazy
Rotten
Lowlife
Reptilian
The bad guy
The villain...
In other words, one evil sonofabitch.

I wonder how well liked you'd be if everyone knew what a shit-talking, back-stabbing, petty-minded, conniving little snake you are.

Here's another thing... you weren't the second shift supervisor, by the way. Ever. Maybe you never understood what I'm about to tell you because I never lorded it over you, but I'm the second shift supervisor. Surprise! That's the title that Chiy gave me when he hired me seven years ago. Not that it really means all that much to anyone except you. So riddle me this - if you really were the second shift supervisor, and not just under that impression, then how could you have just up and fucked off from your job like you did after agreeing to see out the month? Huh? Riddle me that!

Here's a tidbit of wisdom for future reference... supervisors are expected to handle a difficult situation maturely and professionally, and not by throwing a tantrum like a little girl.

Now, with all of that having been said...

You've got a lot of good qualities, David. You're friendly, hard working, responsible, generous, and (mostly) reliable. However, at the same time you suck a big fat slimy green donkey dick, which pretty much takes a steaming Jolly Green Giant shit all over your good qualities and makes them worthless. I hope for your sake that someday you can get a handle on that, the giant green, donkey sucking, shit dicking thing, because if you ever did...

Well! Then you might actually qualify as a genuinely good person, instead of just coming off as one.

- Ash
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p.s. If you care anything at all about NOT being a giant douche bag, then you should take everything I've just said to heart. All of it is nothing less than the truth.

p.p.s. Oh, and about me being lazy... if that's what you really believe, then fuck you.

p.p.p.s. Good luck.

Monday, May 15, 2017

The Nonplussed - a complete outline!

Here it is, the complete simple outline of The Nonplussed, in its entirety.
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I. In the year 2041, human civilization is going to hell in a handbasket.
   
II. Cannibalus the Starveling invades the solar system from the 11teenth dimension.

III. As a byproduct of the ensuing conflict, the true nature and purpose of the universe is accidentally discovered and disseminated.

IV. Cosmic forehead slap right before the universe reboots.

V. Ok, let's try this again... LET THERE BE A LUKEWARM SLIMY TEXTURE COATED WITH AN ALMOST IMPERCEPTIBLE LAYER OF DRY FUZZINESS! ... Yeah. It's gonna work this time.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Meat machine

I'd forgotten how much I hate my ankle. My stupid, treacherous, Benedict Arnold ankle... ankles, actually. There's no telling which one of these treasonous little bastards is apt to pull a shenanigan. Just now it was the left one.

It's been about 3 months since one of these little turd knockers up and said, "Surprise! Did you miss me? Oh, and by the way, ef you, Ash! Enjoy some undeserved excruciation as I abandon my duties as a crucial load-bearing structure and just ef off to the Blue Hills, for absolutely no reason at all! HAHAHAHAHAAAAAA!!"

I'm pretty much powerless here. I can't punish my ankles, because then I'd just be doing their job for them. Same goes for my brain. I can't just put a bullet through it when it's torturing me with sleep deprivation, because my brain knows that it's the pimp and I'm the ho, and that the ho cannot survive without the pimp.

Oh. And now the back has decided to join leagues with the brain and the ankles. WTF, back? What did I ever do to you to deserve this betrayal?

And since the back pretty much has jurisdiction over the sciatic nerve, the sciatic nerve has no choice but to go along with the back, whether it wants to or not... and with the sciatic nerve comes the hip, the butt, the thigh, the knee - pretty much the entire drumstick.

It's like, more and more every day I'm coming to realize that I'm this alive awareness imbedded inside of this really fascinating universe, and I'm allowed to witness and think about and marvel at all of the astonishing things that surround me... but because of some cruel, twisted and powerful outside determination, I have to be slaved to this... meat machine... and forced to rely on it as a means for my continued existence here.

It's not even a quality meat machine. It's a bargain bin meat machine, a flea market meat machine, a meat machine of low quality and prone to failure.

This is all somebody's idea of a practical joke, I'm sure that it is... and it ain't right, man. It just ain't right.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

The Burrito Thing - a comprehensive review

The Burrito Thing
A Comprehensive Review
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Almost exactly 30 minutes ago from  now, I opened the door to my microwave oven to discover it lying there on the glass plate rotater, still wrapped in wax paper - the burrito thing.

Logic insists that I must have put it there, but I simply do not remember anything about this burrito thing or where it came from. I know that my tolerance for alcohol precludes blackouts nowadays, so just how did this burrito thing emerge here, and now?

After examining the label on the wax paper, I understand that the burrito thing obviously comes from where I work, somehow... but how did it get here, all the way from the trash dumpster at my workplace, to the inside of my microwave oven?

That's the mystery! I'm too tired to solve it right now, and I was too tired to solve it when I ate it 10 minutes ago... so please enjoy this review of the mystery steak and egg wrapped in a flour tortilla burrito thing from the write-off pit where I work.

Firstly, I was somewhat trepidatious upon discovering this burrito thing sitting there inside my microwave oven, when all I wanted to do was warm up my 4-Loko so it didn't hurt my throat so much when I chugged it. It was a combination of frustrated bafflement at the stymieing of my objective, overlaid on top of the sudden remembrance of hunger which I'd forgotten about, about an hour ago, that frustrated me so.

Secondly, I was just a little bit deeply concerned that I had no memory of this burrito thing, or how it had gotten there on my microwave plate inside my microwave, because surely I had placed it there... unless... someone else had placed it there, for their own nefarious reasons. Whatev.

I quickly decided that a minute and 30 seconds would be enough time to nuke the poison to death, so I nuked it for a minute and 30 seconds and then I ate it.

My conclusion is that it wasn't very good. It was all breakfasty, and not enough like dinner when you're in the mood for dinner. Plus the ever-present thought of the possibility of dying with every bite helped to make it less enjoyable.

All in all I'd rate the burrito thing as adequate as emergency sustenance for Russians in the event of a nuclear attack.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

A dream - the end

A dream - the end
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I peeked out my window, expecting to see a clear sky, but thunderheads roiled menacingly on the horizon. I hurried outside for a better look. The sky above was still clear, and directly above I saw four parallel contrails racing across the sky, far faster than jets... re-entry trails, like meteors but persistent. There was a series of four loud concussions - their sonic booms - as they disappeared behind the thunderheads, and then a flash erupted, disrupting the storm system and blowing it away. I watched as the flash faded over the course of about five seconds, and a mushroom cloud hurled into the sky. About thirty seconds later there was a deafening KA-POW that became a thunderous rumble, followed a few seconds later by a blast of hot air that knocked me to the ground. I got up in time to see three flashes in quick succession light up the horizon beyond the still rising form of the mushroom cloud.

Those were aimed at Dallas, I thought to myself. The first one missed.

I ran across the pasture to the nearby lake to check my water farm, a system of dozens of long organic tubers rooted to the lake bottom and held bouyant on the surface by air filled sacks. It was a system for drawing fresh water from underground reservoirs, and I would need it to survive. When I arrived I found the entire length of it, about twenty meters, coiled up and floating on the surface of the lake, dead. Someone had uprooted it, for what purpose, I had no idea. I drew it from the lake and held the large, round bulbous roots in my arms and cried. I pierced the air sacks and let it float to the bottom.

It was growing dark when the sky lit up with dozens of popcorn flashes, like rapid fireworks - some seemingly random, and some forming lines that spanned the horizons. Satellite killers, I thought. This is it, then.

To the northeast another flash engulfed the horizon, followed by another, more distant mushroom cloud.

That's the Red River army depot...