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in the beginning

among other projects that i'm struggling to get to various levels off the ground right now, i've had this idea that sits in my head, that i can't ever seem to do anything with. i want to do something with it, because i feel like it would power me out of other areas where i've become creatively stuck. but instead it just feels like a ball of uranium in my creative pocket, weighing me down as i'm trying to swim through the waters of my own brain.

the concept that i'm trying to work out has to do with a thing, not really a character or a setting, although it has elements of both, that appears in several things i've written/ am writing. my idea is that i'd like to give it a sort of origin story, something that mixes facts with [modern] myths- the tale it tells about itself. but i'll be damned if i can think of a good point from which to start.

perhaps it's my personal view of history that gets in the way; everything is the result of what has preceded it, therefore the idea of an origin point is fatuous. the only true origin stories are myths, where you have the luxury of choosing, but even then, they're not quite perfect. what was god doing for all that time before he decided to create the earth and all that good stuff? the primordial deities of ancient greece might have been born out of chaos, but how did chaos get there? even science follows the rule of "nothing from nothing", meaning that there literally cannot be an origin point of anything at all, because there had to be a something to cause the something else. billions of years ago something sparked in the tiniest imaginable corner of the universe, and from that, i have blue eyes.

yes, i realise that i'm overthinking this.

the fact is that we set origin points because we need to, because we can talk our way back to the primordial ooze every time we want to explain a historical event. and certainly, we can talk about turning points, when the weight of some historical events pushes things in one direction rather than another at a particular point in time. so maybe that's what i'm searching for: the particular confluence of circumstances that would have caused my imaginary bugbear to invent itself at a certain point.

if you've read things i've written, you've probably figured out that this is not a fantasy story, where i have unbound options. i favour things that take place in a real, or real-seeming world. maybe like something that lives on the other side of the mirror. it looks exactly the same, but there's no rule that says that's the case when you can't observe it. [yes there is. -ed.]

so here's my dilemna:

i need a realistic story [probably with some actual historical detail thrown in, because i'm sort of hung up on strange but true details];
it has to explain how something expansive enough to hang in the background of several stories i've written or started
i have to be able to connect it to other things that i've already said about it
it needs to be imaginative and memorable and maybe a bit scary, like a proper old-fashioned fairy tale.

so that should be no problem, right? creative people are always able to come up with highly specific ideas on command. that's how the creative process works.

i'm going to go hide in a hole now.

p.s. :: i have bronchitis! that's not related in any way to my creative problem. i just wanted some extra  pity.

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jihadvertising?

i keep seeing this ad for tictac candies:



am i the only one who finds the suicide bomber clown at the end a little unnerving? all the nice natural things like the bunny and the [extinct] woolly mammoth and the fruit get devoured by a trying-to-appear-nonthreatening-but-obviously-psychotic clown who then blows himself up. congratulations, tictac, i think this ad has landed you on about a dozen watch lists.

oh and by the way, showing me that your product will somehow cause my stomach to explode in a rainbow of wtf makes me believe that doing consuming tictacs would be a worse dietary decision than the time i ate two raw eggs and a half a bottle of hot sauce on a dare.

making faces :: hot stuff, comin' through

i don't even know what to say about the weather. the end of september saw temperatures at a scalding 36c/ 97f outside. this is especially annoying because we've had a moderate summer. most days it rained a little in the morning, the temperatures didn't creep into the 30s too often and there wasn't the normal stretch of a few weeks when it felt like we were living on the sun. now, we've receded into more normal fall weather, although it's still on the warm side for mid-october. that climate change thing is a bitch.

trying to think of something positive in the situation, it does put me in a perfect frame of mind to write about urban decay's naked heat palette. it's the latest in what appears to be an endless series of warm neutral and red eyeshadow palettes that have followed in the footsteps of anastasia's modern renaissance. [which i ultimately decided i didn't need after doing a thorough search of my considerable stash.] i do think that it'…

i agree, smedley [or, smokers totally saved our planet in 1983]

so this conversation happened [via text, so i have evidence and possibly so does the canadian government and the nsa].

dom and i were trying to settle our mutual nerves about tomorrow night's conversion screening, remembering that we've made a fine little film that people should see. which is just about exactly what dom had said when i responded thusly:

me :: i agree smedley. [pauses for a moment] did you get that here?

dom :: no?

me :: the aliens who were looking at earth and then decided it wasn't worth bothering with because people smoked even though it was bad for them?
come to think of it, that might mean that smokers prevented an alien invasion in the seventies.

dom :: what ?!?!?

me :: i've had wine and very little food. [pause] but the alien thing was real. [pause.] well, real on tv.

dom :: please eat something.

of course, i was wrong. the ad in question ran in 1983. this is the part where i would triumphantly embed the ad from youtube, except that the governmen…