May 14, 2002

Movin’ on “up”

Oh wow, this is quite ugly when you look at it from this end. Please mind our dust, as great and wonderful things are happening now that I need to study for finals.

I need great and wonderful things as much as I need a stiff kick to the neck. Nevertheless, this is quite exciting. I have installed Greymatter, Llama Taboot Taboot and drifting goes the mind as squirrels and gymnists come in the misty night and steal my fog horn.

Lay off the neutrinos, laddie.

May 11, 2002

swiss army waterbottle

Just what I always wanted. A Swiss Army waterbottle. I wonder if they could have made the beast any uglier. It looks like someone stuck firecrackers in a mess kit and caught the resulting carnage in a coffee mug.

Did anyone else notice the suggestive nature of that handle? Huh? Huh?

May 9, 2002

atmospheric conspiracy

All the atmospheres of this cruel little planet are conspiring to keep my mind in a bitter funk. It has been gray and cold and cloudy and windy and rainy and slushy for the last three weeks. The sun mocks me like a wood nymph, occasionally poking her sweet face out of the rushes, only to giggle and take flight as soon as I notice her presence.

It isn’t even fun bad weather. I love spring thunderstorms, with their rolling liveliness and cruel desire to strike me dead with an instant gigawatt to the foolishly upraised arm. We haven’t been getting thunderstorms, we’ve been getting shitasstorms, which is a technical meteorlogical term for the weather you get in late fall, after all the leaves have been raked and burned and Olde Homme L’Hiver can’t get up the motivation to dump snow over the whole ugly mess.

That’s the problem, here. It feels like we’re on the way out; that we should be nailing boards over the windows at the cabin and draining the septic tank. We’ve been on our way out since last November, minus a pleasant hiatus in mid-April where midriffs and grills propogated about Duluth. Having this weather now is all wrong. It does not promise the usual release from school into an hot orgy of summer. The clouds run low and fast across the hill, threatening to fall to the ground and swirl into your ears to encase your brain in a colorless fog.

May 8, 2002

midwest terrorist

If you want to read the manifesto written by our own little Midwest terrorist, the full text is here at

You really should read it. You really shouldn’t read it. That’s the troubling thing. Helder wrote six pages of raving crap, sent it to the Badger Herald at Madison and set out to place pipebombs across the country. If it weren’t for his bombs no one would care one iota what the l’il bastard had to say. Should we care now? Depends.

He sounds like a standard disenchanted anti-consumerism college student. His views are nothing new, and mostly free-associated philosophical babble that any kid in his 20’s has entertained at some point:

Greed of some lead to Misunderstanding of most.

Misunderstanding life creates a fear of death.

Fear of death forces you to work/conform.

Work/conformity allows government to benefit/capitalize from people (fulfills government desires, not peoples).

As long as greed persists, people will desire to capitalize, in turn forcing people slave away.

Understand life to eliminate greed.

Accurate spiritual understanding eliminates greed.

***The sooner we all understand, the sooner the fear of death and greed is erased.***

Yawn. No doubt if you rooted in the archives of Cromlech you could find some crap that is strikingly similar, though perhaps more articulate and less bitter. I have a copy of an anarchist essay by Bob Black that calls for the Abolishment of Work. I read a book last year called The Hacker Ethic that discussed issues similar to wage slavery and the benefits of creative play over work. Do I embrace these publications as doctrines for existence? Nope, but soon I may be able to coherently justify their attractive principles. Do I believe them? Sometimes.

Helder continues:

Alcohol is a motor skill impairment; marijuana is a mental stimulation, yet the impairing agent is legal?! Is this yet another governmental agenda utilized as a tool for order? Alcohol directly kills thousands per year; marijuana directs kills zero people per year. Wake up people!

Actually, I’ve considered this as well, and I’m very disappointed by how sensical (though not exactly rational) this kid is. I was hoping to read an essay by a lunatic raving about archangels riding giant beetles out of fissures in the ocean floor, and how his skin wouldn’t stop turning inside out and catching on the voices!!! WAA! THIS VOICES!! THEY QUIT SCRATCHING AT MY GLASS FACE!!

Psycho? Hmm. It looks like Helder just took an entry level philosophy course and ran with it. His ideas are thick enough to satisfy a weak collegiate mind that is grappling for meaning, but lack the depth and insight necessary to ever transcend the human consciousness as he wishes. One way for Helder to get his message out would have been to train his mind, hone his writing skills and eventually publish a book.

But no. He wanted to be bigger than he is.

Hence the pipe bombs.

May 7, 2002

energy knuckles piano surf

My sister was kind enough to bring to my attention the offense of referring to someone as a “cute little number.” Somewhere in this raging sea of academics I became torn from the harbor of manners and cast into the black foam of crass man-isms. I forgot I signed on long ago as member of “People for the Ethical Treatment of People.” I’ve forgotten what it’s like to actually be a person of feelings and emotion.

Jazz piano virtuoso Keith Jarrett brought me out of the surf momentarily. I listened to 30 seconds of his live solo album and was astounded. Completely lacking in-

it’s snowing

-pretentions, every second was an infinitely dense affirmation of the human spirit. Keith didn’t play any notes. He tilted his head so the idea would run down his arms into his fingers and plunk the keyboard in the perfect place.

If I had the energy right now my knuckles would be white with frustration. I don’t want to be at my computer. I don’t want to be writing for Cromlech. I don’t want to be doing homework. I don’t want to be in any place that reminds me of higher learning.

I want my soul back.

May 6, 2002

flim flam for the claw backs

Wow. Like, wow. USS Clueless ponders the cultural implications of a civilization developing on the moon of a gas giant.

As for me, I spent 2 1/2 hours today reading through the English Dictionary of Archaic and Provincial Words. It’s two volumes chock full of old English dialects from England. The dictionary was first published in 1889, but some of the words are referenced back as far as 1300. The introduction was quite interesting, as it detailed the quirks and pronunciation tendancies of every regional dialect (Isle of Wight, Westmoreland, Hampshire, etc…) I’ll glean some of the most findest findings for ya’ll.

Chinny mumps: Rude kind of music made by beating chin with knuckles, by the rattling of teeth causing sound in time. So next time you’re sittin’ around at a party and someone starts doin’ that, you know what to call it.

Chokes: The throat. I liked this one cuz it implies an immediate course of action.

Clavy tack: a key. I lost mine clavy tacks last semester. I am still convinced that a cruel woman stole them to do her voodoo majick.

Clatterfert: A tale-teller. If Brian Perez were around he would say “phert”.

Cleaver: This one was a strange childhood game. It’s a length of string tied to a wet piece of leather, which the kid squeezes against a rock with his feet until all air bubbles are forced out. He then pulls on the string, popping the rock (often a flagstone in the road) out of its hole. This is why roads in Duluth suck. Next time you see a kid with a cleaver, beat him.

Claw back: A flatterer. I have lots of these.

Clish clash: Idle discourse. Often takes the form of awkward, forced conversation between a man and woman. We all hate it, and yet we still stand for it.

Flibbergibber: A lying knave.

Flim flam: False, foolish, nonsensical. See Cromlech.

Fog: Another word for moss.

Fossick: A troublesome person. See fossicking.

Fresh-Liquor: Unsalted hog’s fat.

Drunkwort: Tobacco.

Drunkeschipe: Drunkeness.

Drunkard’s Cloak: A barrel that one can wear. Formerly used in Newcastle for the punishment of scolds and drunks.

Duddle: To wrap un warmly and unneccessarily. To cuddle. To make lukewarm. A child’s penis (I assume a male child).

I was trying to read a selection written in Westmoreland, and the spelling was so horrible I could hardly make sense of it. The experience really reminded me that written language is not a natural entity, and everything that has happened thanks to writing depends on a human construction. When someone’s words pluck at the strings of your soul, for how wonderful and transcendental the experience feels, it results from an invention that we created. If humans weren’t here to ascribe meaning to nature, it would be meaningless.

Words are alive and can breathe if you let them. They hold the ideas of the ages, from political agendas to knitting circles to daily life. I can see the people that spoke them. I can see the green fields of Ireland.

So long as my writing survives me, I can never die.

May 5, 2002

match, love, resonance, distraction

I was reading in the library and kept getting distracted by my brain. Let’s see what kind of crap I wrote down…

Does most philosophy boil down to a whole bunch of guys locked in a p3nis match? It seems like all they do is come up with ‘reasonable justification’ that their four-inch prick is really a foot-long rod of desire. Philosophers will go to any length to argue the ruler out the game to keep their truths ambiguous and vague. They tell you how big it is and refuse to show you.

Ever wonder why there are very few female philosophers? Women really have better things to do. God bless them.

The problem with starting an intellectual magazine… all the topics come from within the writers, not from without. There would be little noticeable consistency to the casual reader. No set topics, no subjects, no focus, no direction. The writer for last month’s urban spelunking feature may have three columns about love, rain and p3nises this month. You would need readers that appreciate this randomness, and writers that can lay down words with great talent to keep the quality satisfying.

Love is not an independent thing to look for, but the physical actualization of the human passion for life. It makes the soul tactile. You can wrap your fingers around existence and embrace it, twirl life around on your tongue.

If you don’t love life you cannot love a person. Thus, loving another person is not the exclusive factor for loving life. Getting in a relationship will not gloss over problems that you carry with you. You must have the zest for life, the vigor, the mighty yawp.

Ideally your partner is a condensation of your entire vision of the world into human form. They resonate in your world. Another person can connect you fully with your reality while simultaneously pulling you into their own.

Here’s the first page of my first book, of which I now have about ten ‘first books’ being planned:

There is nothing romantic about my ascension. I was raised by affluent, caring parents. I attended public schools. I graduated college with honors, bought a house and got an accounting job.

There was no grinding poverty, no drug abuse, no adverse conditions from which to rise above. It was a straight shot to the center pin. A life of sweethearts and Novocain. When people hear my story they hide their disgust.

I am a nice man. I am a cruel man. I hate myself for it.

And thus begins the story of Walter Cromwell.

universe online

From this hence at USS Clueless came this:

The Universe is back online. Kind of. Check out the press release images and click on the JPG icons running down the side. The images are huge but absolutely stunning and some of the most beautiful things I’ve ever seen. I wept.

It reminds of a shot from Ryan Rapsys’ video in recital hour. The camera was focused on hundreds of yellow points against a black background. They looked like stars, but were probably from a night shot of Duluth high atop the hill. The camera slowly started to pull out, capturing more and more of the city, more lights, more stars, more dark. It kept expanding until the entire city could be seen, but somehow managed to keep going farther and farther out. An edge appeared in the periphery, then another, and the city rippled like the surface of a pond. Contained within cracked and yellowed borders Duluth continued to drop away as the camera turned skyward…

To focus on a lamppost. Duluth was contained entirely within a puddle on the sidewalk.

May 4, 2002

impossible challenge

I challenge myself to go the weekend without writing on Cromlech. This is a lot like a musician challenging herself not to practice. A police officer challenging himself to not to stop homicides. Spiderman challenging himself not to go PSHH PSHH and swing through Manhattan with gossamer threads, hunting for evil-doers and hot chicks in impossibly tight and impossibly wet and impossibly pink t-shirts.

What happens to all that sprayed web crap when Spiderman is done using it? Does the stuff just evaporate, or does it eventually lose its stickiness and drop to the ground? I normally wouldn’t be concerned, but if a strand that is as thin as thread and strong as steel were to fall from a building it would risk slicing people in half down on the sidewalk. The residuals of Spiderman’s crimefighting would plague the citizens of New York City for weeks or months afterwards.

I don’t know about you, but I would take the Green Goblin over hundreds of falling roast beef slicers any day.

Challenge begins. See you guys later. Rockstock rocked.