Computers made me indecisive

April 15, 2008 at 12:31 pm (Fróðleikr, Ríta, Smáskitligr) (, , , )

When it asks me if I’m certain, I’m thrown into anxiety. Should I delete this folder? I have space, I have plenty of space, but I’m not using the contents. They’re old e-tickets from Ryanair. It’s not like I’ll ever need them again. I keep the folder. It’s a sore on the inside of my mouth that I can’t stop tonguing; I go through the motions of deleting it over and over, never going through. I eventually take it off my Desktop, hide it in some systems folder I never go into, where a makeshift wastebasket of old documents is piling up.

It starts happening in daily life. I can’t order coffee. I’m torn between vanilla caramel lattes and black no sugar drip coffee that melts tooth enamel. I buy Chex mix and trail mix and mix them together. I wear goth hippie dress casual clothes to work. I change channels obsessively so I can watch all of them at once. That goddamned systems folder is taking up a fifth of my hard drive space. My dog gets sick because I feed him five brands of multivitamin a day “just to make sure”.

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Review of Ten Minute Short Story

April 13, 2008 at 11:07 am (Uncategorized)

I could not resist a dramatic ending. I never can. On a second reading, that ending was pretty awful. I’m itching to change it, but I’m not going to. I would have had to spend much more time than I had thinking over how to get the malicious nature of the calling voice across without being so bloody obvious about it, and the rules are that the story took ten minutes, not that it took ten minutes and then fifteen minutes a few days later to edit.

I have a long way to go if I want to learn how to write more quickly.

[2010 Edit: I had no idea of the existence of Heidi Montag when writing this. At all. Now when I read it I can’t get away from her. Augh! Forgive me!]

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Ten-Minute Story – I only have ten minutes before I have to get dressed and go to class.

April 11, 2008 at 9:30 am (Skrifa) (, , )

“Sing to me, Montag, of the pain you have suffered.”

I respond, “Oh, oh, no, not that, it wasn’t like that,” and a woman across the bed hears me, but because I’m sleeping it sounds like, “Oh, oh, oh, not not not that, no.”

I wrap myself in the bedclothes. “Montag,” it calls. I refuse it. I say, “Go away.” The woman shakes me, but she can’t wake me up.

I dream of food. When I wake up, my belly is bloated with hunger and piss. I brush the woman off, direct my cramping feet to the toilet. “Montag,” it says.

I get myself some tea. I stare at the knives. “Tell me of your pain, Montag,” it says.

“I have no pain! My life is fine! My life is happy! Go away!”

The woman comes into the kitchen, fully dressed. She refuses tea, and leaves. She heard me clearly this time. I told her I sometimes have over-reaching dreams. She leaves anyway. I leave after she does, to get away from the flat.

“Montag.”

I have formulated a theory, that my genes are faulty, that there is something so wrong with my DNA that my subconscious has been recruited against me. My life is happy, I am young, artistically fulfilled, academically successful. I have my dream career, a lovely flat. I’m saving up for retirement. This is not the hollow emptiness of consumerism. I am full. I am a heavy stone, squatting comfortably in a river.

It calls me. “Montag.” Unceasingly. Fine, I’ll kill myself, just to shut you up.

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Zapatero prefers crazy “reading” to real politics

April 10, 2008 at 2:51 pm (Fróðleikr, Leikr, Ríta) (, , , , )

Career path choice

Besides ousting the frothing right from the head of Spanish government, Zapatero earns my approval by choosing antisocial pomp above sycophantic small talk.

Note the cluster of smiling faces flocking to Bush like lepers to a messiah.

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Chez “L’insolent” – un journal d’observation ethnographique

April 4, 2008 at 6:03 pm (En français, Fróðleikr, Ríta) (, , , , )

18 mars, 2008
13h30

Quand nous sommes arrivés, il y avait du monde chez « L’insolent ». Ça sentait le café et les herbes de Provence. La femme qui travaillait au comptoir essuyait une chope avec un torchon blanc.

Des fenêtres hautes ensoleillaient notre petite table de coin en fer forgé et nos chaises en  bois. J’ai remarqué qu’une seule fourchette propre restait sur sa serviette de table. La serveuse nous a donné les menus, et j’ai eu l’occasion à regarder le décor.

La salle était tout à fait parisienne, mais ici et là on pouvait voir les petits détails marrants comme un portrait éclatant de Ziggy Stardust sur un tableau de style « cow-boy » qui disait « Long Ranch Saloon » et une peinture murale qui vantait les qualités de la ligne no 13 du Métro.

J’aimais bien les lunettes en acier violet de la serveuse, parce qu’elles étaient montées sur une chaînette de la même couleur. J’ai aimé aussi quand la serveuse s’est courbée et a placé son bloc-notes sur la table pour bien noter nos commandes. Elle avait une écriture élégante, et elle écrivait avec un crayon-feutre qui faisait des lignes épaisses et noires.

Tous les serveurs étaient serviables et polis mais bien qu’ils semblent des gens vraiment sympathiques, leur gentillesse à notre égard était impersonnelle. Ils devaient remarquer que nous n’étaient pas francophones, parce que je suis sûre qu’en parlant je faisais quelques erreurs, et je traduisais pour mon compagnon au besoin. Cependant, je n’ai vu aucun signe de froideur. Alors, est-ce que c’était du professionnalisme ? Ou est-ce que les serveurs ont l’habitude de servir les étrangers ?

Je pense que je pourrai m’installer dans ce terrain. Quand ma mère est venue me voir en janvier, un serveur nous a parlé avec allégresse. Il semblait content que je reste dans le quartier et m’a encouragé à revenir.

29 mars, 2008
13h55-14h45

Aujourd’hui, nous avons mangé du confit de canard, et de la terrine de coquilles St. Jacques. Le repas était délicieux, comme toujours. Notre serveur avait peut-être 15 ans, et était zélé. Mon compagnon a observé que le serveur n’avait pas beaucoup d’expérience.

De temps en temps, la terre s’agitait. Nous croyions que c’était à cause du Métro.

Ceux d’entre nous qui étaient assis aux fenêtres captaient souvent le regard des passants. Quand quelqu’un me regardait, je le regardais aussi. Aux Etats-Unis, les passants me suriraient, mais en France, ils sont gênés.

Un groupe d’étrangers s’est assis pendant que nous mangions nos plats. Le serveur leur a proposé le menu espagnol, et j’ai pensé à mon article précédent. Alors, le restaurant avait fait des menus pour les touristes, et les serveurs avaient l’habitude à servir les étrangers. Deux femmes de leur groupe ont commencé à chanter bruyamment, mais personne ne jetait un coup de l’oeil sur la table, et je me demandais pourquoi. Peut-être que les Français pensent comme les Anglais qu’un coup de l’oeil sur une personne inconnue est impoli, ou peut-être que les petits spectacles de la rue ne les intéressent pas, comme les New-yorkais. À la fin de la chanson, certaines personnes applaudissaient.

J’ai oublié mon écharpe et je suis revenue la chercher. Le serveur qui nous a dit « Bonjour » d’une manière distante m’a taquiné, disant « À ce soir ! » J’ai rougi, et me suis trouvée bête, bien qu’il fût gentil.

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I hate women

April 4, 2008 at 11:34 am (Fróðleikr) (, , , , , )

I was born in a year that I now think of as the beginning of the end. After my birth year a new generation of women was spawned.

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My childhood is so close to the core of me that I can’t dissect it objectively. I can’t ever hope to conclude anything about the beginning, because my oldest memories are not dry, but perfectly intact, complete with smells, the mouthfeel of foods I ate fifteen years ago, music, snapshots of desert through an open car window. They’re hubs through which everything else connects.

Cosmopolitan tells us, “Next time your guy’s mouth is agape because some chick with her cups running over saunters by, slap his butt and say, “Nice tits, huh, babe?” ”

A girl for the Harvard Crimson confesses, “Cosmo is not the glamour puss monthly I had previously thought, but a magazine for tragic women.” She goes on to write,  “In Cosmo girl world, a woman’s existence revolves around fear that her man is going to leave her and anxiety over how to keep him. Such a state could not possibly make a woman happy,” that “(t)his is part of the irony of Cosmo: It’s exactly the sort of publication the conservative matriarchs of my family shun, and yet the magazine itself reinforces some of those old-fashioned values.”

She is wrong. She fails to see what women fail to see.

A young man, who had never known women of an earlier era closely enough to have hope, flew into a rage upon stumbling across a Facebook group named, “WANTED: Knight, White Horse, Shining Armor a MUST.

He exclaimed that women think they deserve love and that they have intrinsic worth. I replied that there is a culture of self-worth. Everyone is intelligent, worthy and righteous. It is their right to be considered as such. They will be deeply offended if that right is denied. Pedophiles have discussions about the moral righteousness of pederasty.

In the shallows, it is as the Harvard girl says. Women cannot be empowered if they spend their time manhunting.

Women are told to be strong and confident and better than everyone else. They are told that men are weaker than they, that men will always philander, and that women are responsible for keeping their men. They are told to accept their man’s natural inclination to wander, but not to accept wandering. They are told that the man they are dating is “their man”.

It is their fault for believing this.

Most modern feminists, like our girl from Harvard, don’t realise that they are assuming the same flawed premise as the girls who read Cosmo. The results are only different because Cosmo girls have deep doubts, and are searching for a soothing balm, perhaps a solution.

This is my answer: it is not a basic human right to be loved in a romantic relationship. It is not a basic human right to be considered intelligent, or moral, or sexy.

Women dress like whores to be certain of their marketability, but they become unkind, petty, hard-hearted, because things must go their way, otherwise they are being oppressed.

I am reminded of a post-vaccination rash when I consider the mind of a woman. We were inoculated against the cruelty of the stronger sex. Now, every man is an object of both their desire and their hatred.

Pause. Consider your assumptions.

Men have their own dreams. Princes on white horses are not objects that every woman has a right to obtain. Only the rarest, only the best of women, said the young man to me, find princes on white horses.

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