|log (2004/06/04 to 2004/06/10)|
Thursday, June 10, 2004
Far and few, far and few
I thought of that Lear poem last night for some reason and (like we always do when we think of things this century) I typed some keywords into Google.
Amusingly, the first three hits in the Web search I did were two references to a place in Gromboolia in some MOO, and one copy of Mark Aster's story "The Hills of the Chankly Bore" (one of the more wholesome dirty stories I know of, and one that I recommend you read, because I like it, and therefore you're likely to like it because etc etc). And the first two hits in the Usenet search were both on that Aster story.
Boy, does that take me back.
In the late 90's, I discovered alt.sex.stories.* when I stumbled on a piece called "Desert Rain" (can't find the original posting on Google, but here's an HTML version); I was pleased and surprised to find that there was good serious erotic writing on Usenet.
a.s.s.* had a bunch of good authors posting then, including Twassel of "Desert Rain", and people called Malinov, and Uther Pendragon, and Mary Anne Mohanraj, and tons of others. And around these authors and their stories, there was all this culture, with norms and in-jokes and documents about the culture and all like that there. It was very cool. (Not that there aren't also some horribly unwholesome stories there; but they're generally pretty easy to spot, and to ignore and/or deplore.)
I see I've mentioned this briefly here awhile back; probably about the time I was gradually and more or less unintentionally leaving the community. I'm not really sure why I did that. Too little time available from other things, probably. And maybe I exhausted my own stock of postable naughtiness. *8)
But it was a good time, and browsing around through a few classic and recent naughty stories gave me a warm (and entirely wholesome) feeling.
Wonder what that culture is like today. I should really take a look.
Tomorrow is another day linguistic analysis
We went for the usual walk at lunchtime today, and afterwards I was sitting there wiping my brow (because I tend to break into a heavy sweat on doing any physical exertion like walking when the temperature is above freezing and the relative humidity is above "dry"), and I passed my finger across my forehead just under my hairline, and then when I looked at my finger there was this clear watery liquid on my finger.
What's up with that, anyway?
I mean, I know it's sweat, perspiration, and I've seen it and soaked it up with headbands and all without giving it a thought for years and years, but how does it, you know, get there?
I know it's made from like stuff that I drink (which is why it comes out all fluorescent colors in them Gator-Ade® commercials), but where is it made? And how does it end up on my forehead?
I don't think there are little water tubes paralleling all the little blood tubes in my body (someone would have mentioned it). So my skin must be, like, making the sweat on the spot, so to speak, out of stuff it extracts from the arriving blood. (There's also "lymph", which is another system of pipeage, but I don't think it's involved here, unless it is.)
Which is pretty mind-boggling, I thought to myself sitting there. I mean, there are like these little tiny (itsy-bitsy) things (factories, machines, devices) that are in my skin (that are my skin), and they somehow take some stuff that arrives with my blood, and make it into this salty watery stuff that appears on my forehead in really significant quantities when I go for a walk at lunch.
Who woulda thought?
And they must be really tiny (since you can't really see them or their working parts or anything), but they produce quantities of this liquid, so they must be either very prolific, or there must be lots of them.
I mean lots and lots.
And they're real quiet, too.
You wouldn't think summoned demons would have time to read their email, but our spammer targets them anway:
Subject: y stupidly working for low salary? bound spirits
We munched considerable Cheddar Cheese to and from the northland last week (not to mention maple sugar candy).
I'm not sure that "tufte, edward" (or your typical Uncle Floyd) is strictly speaking a kind of cheese, but we'll let that pass for now.
More seriously a reader writes in that same input box:
I'm not sure the pressure from the relig right was so overt. I think the polls themselves could very well have been enough to show him how he's eroding is conservative base with his pandering to the left. I'm not so confident that Pat Robertson's people are that organized.
I find it impossible to frame any rational comment on this paragraph, because my mind doesn't get past the reference to Bush's "pandering to the left". Norman, co-ordinate!
So (speaking of politics) what I really want is a nicely-designed bumper sticker that says
Kerry in 2004
Ah, for visual design skills...
Being bogged down in various grownup books (Quicksilver, and still after all these years A New Kind of Science, and so on) I've been reading my kids' books instead. I like reading kids' books; it's relaxing. (For the reasons mentioned in those reviews.)
But it does seem a little creepy how often their real parents turn out to be someone else. Are we real parents really so undesirable?
Near where Routes 84 and 87 cross, the little daughter and I noticed a sign saying
I thought that was pretty hysterical. The little daughter suggested that maybe it was a marijuana orchard. Investigating once we got home, it turns out that it's a fruit and veggie orchard run by a family name of Weed.
Now if I was John Weed and I had an orchard, my first tendency would be to call it something other than "Weed Orchard". But hey. It got them written up in the weblog here and all.
Some spam apparently intended for an underpaid Mona Lisa expert:
Subject: u work so hard but only made little salary studying smiling picture
Readers may recall that awhile back we enjoyed listening to "Lost Christianities" by Bart Ehrman. Now it seems that The Teaching Company has a free offer where you can listen to two audio lectures by Ehrman, about the historical background of "The Da Vinci Code". The price is certainly right, if you're at all intrigued by this sort of thing. I listened to the first one at the grocery today, and while he's mostly saying "nah, that's not what happened, here's some stuff that did happen" (i.e. concentrating on the consensus truth rather than the cool conspiracy theories), it's still interesting.
And finally, presented with even less comment, The National Organization of Restoring Men. I have no idea at all how I stumbled onto that one.
(Last minute linkage addition: whilst verifying the links before posting this entry, I read this item about the Enormous Pumpkin interview, which led me over to the one and only fafblog, which you should also read at. I recommend for instance the item about Ronald Reagan. Another weblog to wish I had the time to follow devotedly!)