Archive for May, 2009

spiritual autopsy

May 31, 2009

A class on Aristotle examines a dessicated corpse and discusses what parts of the soul have been left behind to dissipate and the implications for Frankenstein’s monster.


unicorn sheep

May 30, 2009

A scholar comes across this image in a renaissance manuscript: a sheep with a baboon’s face, its snout extending into a spiral horn. He finds it interesting, because the artist that must have painted it is not usually very imaginitive. He starts to suspect that it might be a real animal, or based on a real animal – maybe a local mutation. Opportunity for detours into discussions of the voinich manuscript, and Bosch. Then a flashback to the artist and his nightmares about that animal.



the european graduate student

May 30, 2009

A foreign graduate student asks the narrator for a cigarette while waiting for the campus bus. “Ah, you smoke my brand.” (Camels) He demonstrates a trick of how to hold your hands to light a cigarette in a high wind. “Yes, I learned that trick while hitchhiking across Austria and Switzerland.” He goes on to explain why he hates America.

“Well then why the fuck are you here dude?”

“Actually I am here at this university to study with a particular professor, one whom with I studied in Europe.” The professor is a specialist in near-death experiences. He came over from Romania to teach at this unveristy.

The professor is killed in the bathroom of the divinity school. As it later turns out, this grad student killed him in a jealous rage. The narrator gets dragged into it because the grad student tries to use him as an alibi witness.


tandoori chicken pizza

May 29, 2009

A feuding couple is outside of the Indian fusion take out restaurant, waiting for their tandoori chicken pizza. She paces back and forth across the empty handicapped parking space. They’re in a fight over money. He blew money they were saving for some child-related costs on a motorcycle, or entertainment center. She’s making up her mind right then to go off the birth control. This is going to happen, money be damned!



May 28, 2009

A man loses his house. And his world gets turned upside down by new-found love. At the end of the story he comes back around once again to a staid existence. But his new-found love, whom he now takes for granted, is killed by a young boy that he must then protect.


jungle princess

May 27, 2009

A frog sits on a leaf, which trembles with the passing of something large and rhythmic. War machinery? Forest-cutting machinery? Mining machinery? Man-hunting machinery? It is the steps of a passing princess, a princess who is a monstrous machine.


100 days of barnyard antics

May 25, 2009

An animator working for a major animation studio spends most of his time working on movies about mice or other farm animals. The big joke at the office is to throw in references to George Orwell’s Animal Farm. One day somebody brings in Maus, then Omaha the Cat Dancer. The animator is inspired to write his own indie comic – he takes as material “100 Days of Sodom”. He sends it in to Hustler, and they give him funding for a film version. He shows a work in progress at an otaku convention. He has trouble dealing with the hentai fans, and can’t get them to understand his original inspiration. When he returns to working on it he goes back to putting in references to Animal Farm. He gets invited to show it at a convention of Furries, which he has never heard of before. He looks it up and knows he wouldn’t be able to deal with it. His handler/producer from Hustler is not happy with him.



May 24, 2009

A man descends from the sky, straight out of the sun. His black hair and beard, streaked with gray, whip around his waist. His arms are spread wide. He wears a heavy, maroon robe. Turquoise geometric designs strip either side – down from the shoulders and over the chest, to the hem, and along the sleeves. He carries a staff.

He descends slowly from the sky to the ground, at the side of a long and empty road, which stretches through a scrabble-dry barren field. He waits, and watches a settlement arise out of the dust on the other side of the road. He is watching it in time-lapse; he exists out of phase of the swiftly moving time of the settlement life. He is tall, as tall as the tallest building of the settlement – which is three stories. After the settlement grows to forty or so dwellings plus some storefronts, a community sprawling over four square kilometers, a figure appears from around the corner of a far building. The figure is as tall as he, and wears chest-length blond hair and a trimmed beard. “You have come.” The newcomer carries a staff, too.

The blond lights the bottom of his staff on fire. It smokes. The black-haired one breathes in the smoke, slurping it into his nostrils like noodles. It goes down into his lungs and then radiates out of his chest, covering the world, painting it all gray to wrap the settlement in a cocoon of fog that nestles it alone in an empty universe.


snake farmer

May 23, 2009

On a blue desert under a purple sky, a snake farmer feeds a small village with snake meat. A plague comes and kills all of his snakes. The villages finds something else to eat. A certain plant once provided a condiment on the snakes, they discover, is very hearty source of nutrition when another part of it is prepared correctly. They increase trade with other villages. Somebody starts plantng berry shrubs in orchards. The orchard farmer crosses the berry with another fruit – really an amazing feat of horticulture. The snake farmer must find a new livelihood


outpost wife

May 23, 2009

A man at an outpost falls incredibly, deeply in love with the teenage bride that is brought to him by a supply expedition. She is the first female he has seen in years, and he is completely captivated by her every physical attribute. Then an older woman, much more beautiful, enters the scene. She arrives at the outpost through misfortune – traveling group or vehicle has been destroyed. He starts to realize how homely his teenage bride is. He wants to be loyal, however, it’s a struggle.