September 15th, 2004

there!, Hello

Busy Body

Mine was... Yesterday was a calibrate-and-test-and-correct-and-manipulate-the-experimental-apparatus day, to get it all set and ready to go to Beth Israel tomorrow. For the most part: done.

Today, I need to put together a CD Installation package and collect together all the actuating programs. Then, I find a way to install the poker tip to the top of the motor. Then I find a box to carry everything.

However, yesterday was not a very busy day writing wise. An oversight I hope to correct today. Undoubtedly, Paydarfar is going to come in, to discuss work/etc, thus wrecking my productivity with mindless work, yet again.

I keep waiting for a soul-crushing message from Keohane. So far, no luck, but soon. He said he'd need a couple of days to run the story through the meat grinder.

Last night, Kat and Trista went to Stitch 'n Bitch, Trista is now acting president. I show my support and usher them out the door, giving me some alone time.

Read Birkin's "'Don't Ever Leave Me'" from The Harlem Horror collection, browsed manga, and continued to plunge into Al Sarrantonio's strange horror novel Totentanz. Watched Father of the Pride which was in turns humorous and kinda straight-laced.

Last night, just before falling into sleep, I started pondering the enigma that is Bentley Little's oeuvre. Bentley Little is a horror author, writes books that are predominantly titled The ____. The Ignored, The Store, etc. Two of his books have single word titles, Dominion and University. He either writes supremely awesome works (University, The Ignored, The Mailman, The Store) rooted in some form of satire, or books that bore the shit out of me (The Revelation), which are just straight ahead "meat and potatoes" (to use a Dan Keohane-ism) horror stories.

Based on the Little musing and the submersion in Junji Ito's manga, I reflected on the fact that some of the best horror I've read is surreal in nature, and that got me to pondering just why that is. Could it be the notion that even when events turn terrifyingly strange, it seems normal? Could it be the unexpected? Hmmm. Well, if the oldest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest fear is that of the unknown (to paraphrase Lovecraft), then this suggests that horror must be surreal. Hmmm... So Borderlands is the wave of the future...

So, yesterday I began an interesting project. I scanned the Handouts sections from two Call of Cthulhu RPG texts. 300 dpi, the printouts are crisp and lovely. Better than most photocopies. This way, I only have to subject the books to one flop/spread/scan, and can maintain their spines. I've been collecting Call of Cthulhu RPG since a Dragon Magazine article espoused its coolness back in 1988 or 1989. So, I have a plethora of books. Now what's always been cool about the books is the fact that they come with scads of handouts, to be photocopied and passed out during play. News clippings, letters, excerpts from musty old tomes of eldritch lore... Cool stuff. However, since I refuse to damage my books by cutting out the pages, I have had to resort to photocopies. Now, I have access to a photocopier at work, but it's damn embarrassing to get caught at it, photocopying game stuff. So, I thought, what the hell, let's try the scanning thing. Works like a charm. When I'm done, I'll make a CD of the things and keep them for a long, long time. Print out a new copy when the mood strikes. Now I just have to bring my books to work, in twos and threes, until the project is done.

Writing exercise:

Describe the room, with mood.

Fluorescent tubes jittered to life in the windowless room and revealed the laboratory. The place was a tangle of cords and wires. They ran along the floor, between racks and benches choked with dusty, archaic machines, businesslike BNCs dangled from tabletops, and power strips fixed the edges to the wall sockets. Overhead, a rainbow of network cables crisscrossed a labyrinth of pipes and ducts, strung like tinsel. The room was a carefully constructed, multi-layered, lifeless web. Arms tight against my sides, I entered and sat in the four wheeled computer chair in the center of that web. The nearby PC whirred and groaned, as it came awake. I waited in silence. The Master of the Web would return, soon.

Hmmm. Moody and descriptive? Hmmm.
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