new sense

2013-01-28 14:54:40

i recently had a septoplasty.

i chose to undergo this because:

the surgery was fast but the recovery felt agonizingly slow. it is only the second surgery of my life and as someone who rarely gets sick recovering for 2 weeks was misery. it culminated in a panic attack and lots of star trek: the next generation (i only made it out thanks to my partner, A_______).

i'm doing much better now and on monday i had a normal work day. this included my usual commute by bus, during which i found it hard to concentrate on my book: what was that smell?

the bus has a stench. people criticized my city's public transit by referring to its numerous olfactory offenses. no, i argued. it's totally fine. you just need to ride it more. it turns out my very restricted nasal cavities had spared me the pain for the past year.

in one hearty whiff i could detect body odor, flatulence, someone's horrible bacon breakfast, bus exhaust, the very breathe of others. it was not pleasant. luckily i'm old-hat at not using my nose to breathe.

by the time i got off the bus my stomach was just a little upset. but, then began my walk to the office. in about .4mi i was subjected to car exhaust, cigarette smoke, the smell of at least four distinct varieties of flesh burning in restaurants, and more flatulence and body odor. by the time i got to the office my stomach was very upset.

this experience was very surreal. i have never had a sense suddenly revealed to me like that. it is as though i gained sight and the actual appearance of other humans not only failed to match my mental imaginations and expectations but were instead visions of pure horror. that what the sighted take for granted--teeth, hair, eyes--were obscene protrusions and objects glistening and yellowed. would i wish for blindness once again?

what makes this especially perverse, i think, is that what i am sensing now is air: invisible, omnipresent air. of course i rationally understood that the air around me is full of harmful things; on monday morning i viscerally felt and experienced those harmful things. i've since been told that i will "get used to it;" the question i'm facing now is, do i want to?

or do i want to purchase an industrial respirator now, and strap it on while i'm still reeling from the stench and rot of the air of our cities? why shouldn't i? visual taboos aside, it seems like a reasonable thing to do. we purify our water with a filter; we have organic food. why not purify our urban air?

why do we accept air that terrorizes? air within which lurk invisble behemoths of stink, titans of unhealth and decay, many-tendrilled predators of cancer and filth?


dreams & realities

2013-01-15 16:30:40

1

i take A_______ on a date to this drive-up sonic type restaurant (vegan though) that is a virtual reality dinner theatre where you pick a type of dinosaur and a super hero and little AI versions of them battle to the death in a small jungle-themed platform that looks like the battle squares from super mario RPG. the default preset was "TRex vs. Batman" but to mix it up we watched "Stegosaurus vs. Aquaman" while eating veggie burgers. Aquaman was ripped apart and stomped on.

2

after dinner we went to a lovecraft museum. we broke into the basement. it consisted of several rooms that were copies of the upstairs rooms of my late grandfather's house. in one room was a sick woman with waist-long black hair in a white nightgown. she was breathing but basically comatose and wouldn't make eye-contact with us. the door was opened and we thought we were found out by the head of the household but it was a dark golem of some kind bearing a platter; the golem proceeded to spoon some kind of slop into the comatose woman's mouth.

we moved on to another room and found some kind of shrine. it was set up kind of church-like with scattered folding chairs facing a blank wall. the wall adjacent had a long shelf with scale models of Ngranek (a great mountain) and a dark tower of sorts.

we sat and the head of the house came down. he seemed pleased that we were there for "worship". the ritual began; a dark ambient drone filled the room and the blank walls started lighting up with strange monochrome maps of eastern europe and pictures of shambling, hairy black things. the small model of Ngranek replicated itself and grew larger, the walls broke away and we were suspended in shitty brown folding chairs over the great peak. a torrent of skulls rained down from the sky and we were back in the basement and everything was normal again.

the dude left and we walked out a door to the outside where it was raining and gray. i think it was portland.

3

we make our way to an office party held at my apartment. unfortunately a coworker has a serious grudge on me and learned sorcery. he used it to turn the floor of my apartment into a portal to a particularly raging/shark-filled area of ocean. the floor was an illusion and if you stepped unaware you'd drown or be eaten. all of the party guests showed up and got trapped on a few precious squares of non-transformed linoleum. we had to gingerly dip fingers "into" linoleum squares to figure out which were oceanic. we construct a boat out of furniture and most of us make it to the kitchen. the party starts there, where it is safe, as the unlucky ones who slipped and fell are ripped apart by sharks. i weep because lots of my books were lost in the ocean.

4

i'm in a coffeeshop and there is this long table next to my little one. it is full of older people who are all chanting liberal things. they bang on pot lids and blow whistles and say things like "Legalize it" and "Make love not war!" it is evidently a birthday party for a 69 year old man who has many buttons on his hat

5

i have convinced my job to send me to a conference in Russia about augmented reality. i rush into the conference room to get my swag which is a small computer (slightly larger than rasp pi), head gear, and some kind of power glove. everyone puts it on and you can create illusions around yourself and the world that the augmented reality reveals to you through your headset.

the conference devolves into chaos and augmented reality takes over. i am threatened by some AR thugs who convince me to put some illusion of valuable money on my shoe and walk around. when other users attempt to dive and grab it from my foot they will accuse them of thievery and beat them up, in the process stealing any valuables on their person (AR or otherwise).

6

i am stuck in the back of a very small and claustrophobic marta bus. it is night and i don't know where i am. ahead of me also smushed in with the many people on board is a tall, older black man. he is discussing microchips and how they are put into babies and then tracked using devices like iphones / tablets. he was very proud of himself for not owning any such things, even a cell phone.

this conversation embarrasses me so i look at the floor and notice a dark puddle of liquid pooling around my feet. it is emanating from a seat behind me and i worry i am being urinated on. this makes me feel worse so i look back up.

the older man is now talking about vietnam and the illuminati with a younger guy whose smart phone is full of illuminati pictures.

7

i go to mars. there is a space base there and my great grandfather is alive and is also Prince Phillip. he is a drunk and not very nice but he leads me to a chamber where i witness a holographic replaying of my (paternal) grandfather (his son) landing on venus which is a tropical madness. my grandfather is toiling and suffering, stripping off his space suit to get horrible parasites out of it and sweating profusely and dying of dehydration. i am unable to distinguish the hologram from reality; suddenly the holograph of my grandfather comes out and he is very tired / sad. he leads me to a porch (the covered front room of his house) and sits and starts to drink whiskey. my great grandfather (prince Phillip) is acting pathetic and drinks himself into a stupor in the corner.

the ghost of my late (maternal) grandmother shows up on the porch and she is so happy, happier than i ever witnessed her being in life. she smiles and i'm overwhelmed by it and start crying. then i woke up.


movie roundup

2012-10-22 14:14:24

adjustment bureau

fuck this movie a lot. like most adaptations of philip dick, it manages to completely ruin a solid premise. there is nothing redeeming about this movie and it weighs in at a crushing 120 minutes. avoid forever.

pan's labyrinth

embarrassed to have only just now seen it. excellent. i wish though that there had been budget for more fantasy sequences as they (especially the Pale Man) were simply perfect. I believe the early face-bludgeoning scene with a beer bottle is what triggered the blue-cudgel-imminent-death dream scene i had recently.

hellboy

enjoyed this far more than i expected. i wish hollywood would have allowed it to be a drama instead of an action film as i think ron perlman is an excellent actor. i enjoyed all the non-fighty scenes tremendously. does a great job of maintaining the lovecraft feel.

bad education

my first Almodovar. i enjoyed it and appreciated the metafiction. i wanted to see more of Enrique's character; i think that is my only real complaint. he has too much screen time to just be a foil but not enough to make him a full/deep character.


bone feather

2012-08-26 15:37:36

a gruesome local case which accident had made dramatic;
no record existed.
I was beyond all coherent thought.
what had found him?

This was always the case of late.
And the organs never would work again.
A month, you say, without food?

My quest had come to something at last!
in some obscure Eastern temple,
I closed my eyes.


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