Government Pizza

I put together this post almost a week ago and saved it to post probably the next day and it completely slipped my mind.

I recently wrote a series of tweets that turned into a weird story on why I worry about what Democracy will wrought. Or wright. I’m not sure what the future tense of wrought is. Anyway.


A brief…ish metaphor for the USA times

Say you enter a cafe for lunch. Not a café, of course, because it’s hard to add those little symbols to letters while typing and the French suck–this is America, gaddfern it–in fact, we just start pronouncing cafe “cayff”. So anyway, you enter a cayff and want something to food.

How about a salad? Well, you’ve heard some weird stuff about it, some people say the lettuce wasn’t protected against disease and the tomatoes are mushy, but you checked and the lettuce was protected against disease although questions were brought up over the–I’m gonna say some kind of spray that protected it against disease? I don’t know can you imagine injecting lettuce with a needle? I looked it up and apparently a needle was found in some Romanian lettuce but I mean ha ha where even is Romania? Is it in Rome? I also found this which is adorable.


Also you checked and the tomatoes are mushy but, still, overall very healthy, very nice. I actually don’t like salads but I assume most people find them edible!

It turns out this cayff only serves one thing at a time, and it only changes every four years (usually). What it serves is decided upon by all the customers who happen to be there at the time. Whichever side is loudest most populous is what is served for those four years. Everyone seems to be focusing on two dishes though, neither of which is the salad. You ask a waiter about it, and they shrug. You ask a few more waiters, and then finally you ask someone who has eaten at the cayff before and they explain that the salad is available down in the basement past a rickety set of stairs, through a flooded passageway, over a wobbly wooden rope bridge over a chasm, and through a Roman gladiator coliseum. They put it there, and nobody ever took the salad, and so they left it there.

You manage to see it using some binoculars or something, and yep, it would be really hard to notice unless you go around asking and looking. No wonder no one goes for it.

You also notice a plate of butter-fried butter covered in nickels with a side of no health care.

Okay, you go back upstairs. What’s the two dishes everyone else is looking at? Well, one of them is an orange Skittle. A giant orange Skittle. That’s poisoned.

why are we eating here again

Okay, okay, okay, what about the other one? Hey, it’s a steak! That’s pretty good, right? It has a side of white bread sogged up with grease and a big hole cut in the center so it’s mostly just the crust, but maybe you won’t have to eat that. Maybe you can just eat the steak.

Although… now that you are remembering, your friend ate here a little while ago for breakfast. They had two steaks available, but one included a fruit salad, though there were some hard bits in the steak. The other steak–the one that is now available for lunch–was actually made of rat meat. Or pigeon meat, or whatever you want to say. Now, they’re saying this lunch steak is not made of that stuff. It is 100% grade-A beef, and it even offers some of the fruit from the fruit salad.

You don’t see the fruit salad, though (they say it’s coming), and you can’t be sure they’re telling the truth about the content of the steak. Sure, your friend could have been lying, but why would they lie, and also, I only said it was a friend because I thought this story might be inconsistent if you’d eaten here before. The breakfast metaphor doesn’t even work all that well. Also, some of the steak’s friends showed up and are dropping hints that the steak would go ahead with the TPP anydangway.

Let’s take a brief moment to reiterate the orange Skittle was poison. Also I can’t actually tell if Skittle is the singular form or if it really is just Skittles overall. Also Skittles is starting to look really weird. Oh yeah and by the way orange is my least favorite Skittle flavor. Actually I don’t like orange-flavored most things. Yet they always seem so common.

What was I talking about? Oh, right, the steak.

So maybe the steak is cool now? Maybe it won’t be rotten and stuffed with money? Maybe it won’t be soaked in oil and cooked in coal?

To push this metaphor unnecessarily further, everyone is divided into tables and each table’s vote is homogeneous, the plurality vote of the table is considered the general vote. You get dumped at a table full of people who don’t think that Skittle is poisonous. You might as well drum up awareness of the salad. The more people who know, the closer we can get to having more choices.

The steak may turn out fine. It may turn out figgin excellent. And the salad could even turn out mediocre. But the range of possibilities seems more positive for the salad.


Random chance in writing

I actually randomize a…n almost bizarre amount of stuff in the Cloudy Cuckoo Cosmos. Some events I randomize–I’m pretty sure the initial setup of the four battles in chapter 17 of Darmenzi had the participants of the four fights randomized, and from there I just wrote how it would naturally play out. I hadn’t planned how they would turn out (though the orb then got nabbed by someone else anyway so it wasn’t that critical, I guess).

But that’s not all. Every time I develop a new character, whether premeditated for a future book or someone written in as I’m writing, I’ll open up a random number generator and randomly determine a number of features for the character, gender/sex being a big one. Regardless of any preconceived notions I have about a character, I’ll randomize what sex they are. (A lot of older characters I didn’t do this for because they’ve existed in such a way for so long.) Another datapoint: glasses. It turns out a lot of people nowadays need corrective eyewear. It’s not really such a nerd accessory anymore, and you can’t remove the need for vision correctiveness by just being cool (although you can just wear contact lenses, I guess).

Oh yeah, and sexual orientation. That’s randomized.

(Not all of these things are fully randomized, and some of them could be subject to change as I get to know a character. One character just had to have eyeglasses. Another character I simply realized, as I worked out the plot for a future story, was certainly homosexual.)

Anyway, my point here is that I randomly determine so much in writing that why don’t I try to use it to help me write blog posts? TO WIKIPEDIA’S RANDOM ARTICLE FEATURE

ong what if someone wrote a story with wikipedia’s articles as the characters, and there’s a group of article characters that are orphans ong

Er… there are a lot. Like, more than the population of a big town. More than the population of the town I used to live in.

And they’re all on a deserted island alone. There’s a Wikipedia war or something, probably like an edit war, and the orphaned articles get stranded on an island filled with pies, and only one of them can be Lord of the Pies, coming this fall to Reality Show TVision.

Political “I told you so”

The US presidential race this year features number of key players: Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, Jill Stein, Donald Trump, and some guy, Larry Jonathan I think? Clinton got the Democrat’s nominee. Sanders supports were sad. Stein supporters expected it.  Trump supporters… I don’t even know.

Let’s say Trump wins this November and becomes president. Clinton supporters will look at the Sanders supporters who didn’t then bend over for Hillary and say “I told you so.” Sanders supporters will look at the Clinton supporters and say, citing the idea that Sanders was a stronger opponent against Trump, “I told you so.” Who will be right?

Um, well, Donald Trump will be right, because he’s on the Republican side. But who will be left? Well, not the people who will go live in some other country. But who will be wrong? EVERYBODY.

Though I’ve read that more Sanders supporters have gone to Clinton than Clinton supporters did for Obama in 2008 anyway, which is kind of hilarious? I didn’t follow the 2008 election too closely because I was still young, what were their main policy differences? Although I’m not even sure that mattered.

Message for Immigrants…

Why would any of you even want to come to the USA? I mean, look, I can certainly understand there may be some problems in your home country that you may want to escape from, but to this country? Where there are other problems, ranting and punching assholes, and the possibility of an evil spirit of Halloween becoming the leader?? I’m sure there are a lot of countries you could move to that aren’t on the road to a collapsed bridge.

Aside from that, English is an awful language. It’s pretty terrible. It’s mostly just nonsensical, and we can’t even agree on a proper neuter-gender pronoun.

I mean, when I look at all the main-English-speaking countries, I think, wow, are all the English countries just terrible or something??

Oh, except Scotland. You guys still seem cool. Scotland kind of completely voted to remain in the European Union, so maybe they’re having second thoughts about that whole “hey, maybe we should stick around with England”. Also I haven’t heard much about Ireland lately, I dunno how they’re doing, maybe I shouldn’t just assume the worst about all English countries? M…Maybe I’m going to anyway?

Anyway, come to the US if you really want, but 240 years ago we left England, and now England has left the EU, so don’t be surprised if we refuse to be one-upped and vote to leave the United Nations
or something.

Health Cake System

Let’s say you have a cake. Let’s say you have the Greatest Cake in the World. Now let’s say that cake is covered in rotten maggots. You must get through the rotten maggots to get to the cake. Maybe you can pay the rotten maggots to bring you the cake? Maybe some want to actually train the maggots and dress them in tiny waiter suits and make them carry tiny plates around? Maybe they’re still maggots?

Some people have pretty good cakes. Maybe not the best, but it’s good. You can have as much as you want, too; just pay the entrance fee. Maybe that maggot cake has an entrance fee, but you’re actually paying for people later on, those people have to pay the maggots anyway, and there are people outside ranting about how the bakery is going to be demolished any day and the only way to prevent it is to give the maggots complete control of the cake.

On one hand, I just now realized I’m basically calling insurance companies maggots and feel I should apologize, but on the other hand, I really don’t think I want to.

Anyway, let’s say you have Greatest Cake etc. but without maggots, but it’s on top of a mountain. Sure, you could buy a helicopter to fly up there and get it, but what if  all you can afford to help you climb is a rusty shovel covered in blood and a big maggot that failed its driving test? What if someone says they’ll pay for those tools, though? What if someone says they’ll buy you a whole helicopter? Oh. The maggot is flying the helicopter. Well, shoot.

Anyway, it turns out the entire time the cake was a fake and was actually a craps table in a casino, and you can bet money on how much cake you get. Then it turns out you spent a lot of money and got a lot of cake but you’re not even hungry now. The person next to you had no money to bet and is really hungry. And then the metaphor breaks down because, I mean, the cake-winner could just give some cake to the hungry person, right? Because we as humans would ever do such a thing?? I mean the cake goes bad at the end of the year so you have to bet again for some and everyone has to do it at the same time in a short period so it’s UTTER CHAOS

Dear the U.S., aka where I live: can you eliminate the middleman on health care please. I work for one, and I won’t mind!

Notes scribbled in a library book

Seriously, who would do that? This is a library book. It exists for lots of people to read. Even if the notes you scribbled are kind of hilarious, it doesn’t excuse it. What would excuse it is if the book was once owned by someone else who had made the notes and then gave the book to the library, in which case you flip over from being lame to being cool. Your notes are still silly though so they’re getting posted.



Maybe this term will catch on, probably it won’t??

The chapters I post on here are not the final version. Hopefully that was obvious with Slubes… but it’s the case with Darmenzi, as well. The final version–the finished version–will be in book format. Final and finished. Sooo… what do I call the version I post on this site?

I’ve used several names, none of which I’ve been satisfied with. Unfinished, pre-final, not-completely-edited, not-the-finished-version… okay, some of these are phrases. I can’t use unedited because they are edited, just not fully. Early edition is another I used, but it sounds weird. I’ve considered beta, like with video games, but that’s more of a video game term that’s not even always used accurately.

Finally I thought of in-progress version. Sounds a bit long, though, even if it’s not an entire phrase. So, um, what about just “prog”? Prog version. Short for in-progress. Ignoring Pikmin, which has an extra G and is very smoky, not too much uses prog. Look, progressive rock, you can just use prog rock. What would you do if another music became progressive, like polka? Prog polka??

Anyway. I don’t know if the term will catch on, but it’s what I’m using. … for now. New chapter next week!

This was a failure.

I’m making a note here:
It’s hard to overstate
our disappointment.
Discovery Channel.
They do what they do
because they can.
For the good of nobody.
Except for the ratings.

But there’s no sense crying
over every mistake.
You just keep on trying
till you run out of bait.
And the discovery gets done.
And you make a show about guns.
For the people who weren’t
eaten alive.

It and They and Thon und Es; Pronouns, Pronouns! What a Mess.

So gender-neutral pronouns. English kind of failed at this; I blame Christianity. But I’m not here to blame things, I’m here to talk about solutions!

Anyone who’s read some of my stuff might notice I use “it” as a gender-neutral pronoun, used for when things don’t have a gender, have a single-gender structure, or people just don’t know the gender (though for the last one I’ve started going off what the main character assumes it is.) This works particularly well for robots because they’re machines. “It” also seems to work well for non-human characters because, well, hey, they’re not humans, clearly they are animals then so “it” is totally fine.

But this means if I did have humans appear, the possibility of using “it” would come into play. I try to stay consistent with it, but of course it is impersonal. At this point, allow me to break out Dinosaur Comics. I got to thinking this actually after watching this interview on The Colbert Report with Janet Mock (no idea who she is, by the way).

Yeah, okay, look back at the talking dinosaurs. “They” does not have to be plural, but let’s talk about grammar. My professor for a Philosophy class in college pointed this out, actually. You can say “They ate the pizza,” and it’s all fine, maybe it’s a group of friends, maybe it’s a real hungry individual. Fine. Everyone’s fine. But if “they eat the pizza,” then that has to be a group of friends. If it’s one real hungry individual it’s, “They eats the pizza.” This, of course, is because it would otherwise be “He eats the pizza,” or “She eats the pizza.”

So the problem with “they” is to be grammatically correct, you have to totes sound like you’re being grammatically incorrect. If we then go with Thon like in Dinosaur Comics, well, it’s just rather jarring in normal reading.

So why don’t we do what English does best and steal words from other languages? Let’s steal German’s “Es”. Hex, we can even just dump the dative and genitive cases like our other pronouns and just have “es” and… “es”. Wow. That’s another problem with “it”: there’s just it, it, it, and it, whereas with he and him/she and her we at least have some semblance of what we’re talking about.

What’s the solution? I haven’t gotten a figgin clue. These four (it, they, make it up, and steal foreign words) seem the best solutions, or at least the four I can think of right now. I might stick with “it” because it’s (or they’s) (or thon’s) (or es ist) the least disconcerting–I demand myself to stick with grammar unless I don’t want to, and since I want to in this case, I would use singular grammar for they, making it look weird. Then thon is, again, just jarring, and foreign words might scare people. I dunno. ES IST BEÄNGSTIGEND!

But maybe someday crazy writers can change language to better suit the world. Shakespeare did, or at least to suit himself. For now, I’ll stick with “it”, probably, but does anyone out there who doesn’t read this use a certain pronoun? (If you do read this, you can comment, too.)