Reproductive Organs

Hibiscus FlowerI’ve found that nature is most creative in its reproductive organs. I have this little tropical plant on my computer, an epiphyte, and though I’ve forgotten its name, for the past few weeks I’ve been admiring the little tubular purple flowers that have grown from the twisting green stems. Inside the tubes themselves though are still smaller and brighter tubes, and at the end of those, rye seed-shaped blobs full of yellow pollen extend out to the air. All this just to reproduce. Flowers are the most amazing things. Take a good, hard look at an hibiscus flower and you might be hard pressed to believe in a universe as HP Lovecraft so eloquently put it, “that grinds from nothing to something and something back to nothing again, neither heeding nor knowing the wishes or existence of the minds that flicker for a second now and then in the darkness.” Lovecraft’s words are dark and lonely, but if you look at these flowers — I mean really look at them, then you will know that Lovecraft was truly writing fiction. I mean, flowers could reproduce without all this fanfare, yet they hover instead at the precipice of nature’s creativity. And it’s not just flowers. Take fruits for example. My mulberry tree in my back yard throws red and blue berries all summer long. And there are pears and mangoes and bananas. All part of the reproductive process. Then we have animals, each with complicated courting rituals of their own, various sexual organs. I just read yesterday that Orcas and their newborn baby whales don’t sleep for several months after birth. Something, to me, in the inherent nature of the universe is trying to reproduce incessantly, and this force, be it god-like or wave-like, focuses its energy on this process of reproduction most of all, resulting in the creative explosion we know as life. No wonder the porn industry does so well.

Meteor on MarsI just read yesterday too that a few months ago they observed the first meteor on another world. While that may not sound impressive to some, I think it’s pretty damn cool that we have these little rovers climbing around Mars watching the sky as well as the ground.

Finally, on a more personal note, I have a story up at Abyss & Apex. Give it a read if you so desire.

Revving up for ReaderCon

Hi everyone! Hope everyone in the US had a good 4th of July. We spent it on top of my friend’s roof watching the Manhattan fireworks. I convinced everyone that, yes, there were smiley faces in the fireworks. No one believed me until they saw this. (Okay, so that’s not really my photo, but it illustrates the point well, doesn’t it.)

So we got to see Lauren McLaughlin last night at our writers’ group and everyone was glad to see her back (even for a little while). Can’t wait to see what’s next from her. And we’re gearing up to go to ReaderCon this weekend for a little schmoozing and boozing. I’ve never been to a Con before, but I expect it will be lots of fun. And I’m sure everyone has already seen it, but I may go see Batman this afternoon. Yes, I’m a little behind on the curve.

We were talking about War of the Worlds last night, and though I haven’t seen that either, the people who had thought that Spielberg essentially abused the memory of 9/11 by continually beating viewers over the head with terrible, panicking imagery. I read this review from the Village Voice and it had this to say: “Spielberg explicitly alludes to the WTC attacks in dozens of ways: missing-persons postings, fallen airliners, reflexive questions like “Did you lose anybody?” etc. The references are merciless, and firsthand veterans of ground zero should approach the movie with tongs.” Even better, I plan not to see it. I liked his early films, but his last few have descended into big budget drivel, and now this exploitation of human fears has permanently changed my opinion of him and his films. Go do something better with your time like eat at this Restaurant in the Sky.

You know you’re a nerd when…

Exterminate!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!…you spend your friday night watching Deep Space Nine and the new Doctor Who. The Deep Space Nine episodes I got from Netflix, but the Doctor Who episodes, not available anywhere in the US, had to be (ahem) acquired by other means. I thought they were really well done, amusing but at the same time capturing that true science fictiony feel of the older Doctor Who’s. Especially enjoyable was the return of the never to be destroyed Daleks. “Exterminate!” While they did pull a little deus ex machina with Rose at the end, I thought overall the episode worked. It had a little Max Headroom feel for me, that totally underappreciated and short lived show of the late 80s. I also liked Captain Jack, and though I didn’t catch the episode where he was introduced, it was good to see them use an American character that wasn’t naive nor stupid. Jack seemed to be quite flirtatious with both sexes too, a modern and interesting take for a Doctor Who character. Yes, you can say it now. I am a nerd. Well, what did you expect?

The Hudson Current article about the creation of Sybil’s Garage is now online. Hope you enjoy it!

Song playing now – Visage – “Fade to Gray”

Space 2005

While awakening and stretching this morning, I walked over to my window to open the blinds when I noticed a not so unfamiliar man rummaging about the garbage across the street. In his hands was a toy model of the spaceship from Space 1999, a TV show from the late 70s, early 80s that I remember fondly. Because I was out of sugar for my coffee, I wandered over to the local bodega to get some when I saw this poster for a movie called Ringside. I never heard of the movie, but the poster was in excellent condition. However, I decided against keeping it. People throw away the darndest things.

Stranger Things Happen

I’ve just heard that Kelly Link has released her first collection of stories, Stranger Things Happen, online under the Free Creative Commons License. I’ve read the stories before and enjoyed them, but I’ve copied STH to my computer for later persusal. Kelly said she was inspired by “author and copyright activist Cory Doctorow who had put each of his books online under a Creative Commons license.” She hopes this at least won’t hurt sales, and spread her (excellent) stories far and wide. I hope so too.

DJ Matty Q

So I sent my gift package off to Kris Dikeman at Clarion West today care of the US Postal Service. I insured it, asked for delivery confirmation, and even tore up little pieces of paper and put them in the box to make sure nothing broke. I hope it arrives okay because I made her a CD. I’ll give you a little sneak peak of the track listing because I’m sure she’s too busy writing.

01 – Intro by AlteredFluidians
02 – Alberta Hunter – Two Cigarettes in the Dark
03 – Bloc Party – So Here We Are
04 – April March – Cet Air-La
05 – The Decemberists – Leslie Anne Levine
06 – Radiohead – How to Disappear Completely
07 – Visage – Fade to Grey
08 – Aluminum Group – W-O the Erte
09 – Franz Ferdinand – Jaqueline
10 – Stellastarr- – Jenny
11 – Bloc Party – Helicopter
12 – Felix da housecat – Silver Screen
13 – Radiohead – Subterranean Homesick Alien
14 – French Kicks – Only So Long
15 – Bloc Party – Blue Light
16 – French Kicks – One More Time
17 – J.S. Bach – Gavotte En Rondeau

I really like the ordering and selection of the mix, and I chose the particular tracks to blend in with one another. If only you could hear them now…

In other good news, the Hudson Current printed the interview with me today. Unfortunately, I cannot find an online version of it, so I may scan it in and put in on the website. Many thanks to Diania Schwaeble for the whole shebang.

And finally, if you’re looking to listen to some music and support a good cause, the Live 8 concert happens July 6th. The concert intends to raise consciousness about world poverty, and their goals are to convince the G8 to drop their international debt, made trade laws fair, and double foreign aid to the neediest countries. While I find it odd that some of the wealthiest bling-blingers in the world are pushing for poverty relief, it’s about time we all came together to fix this problem. I mean, in a world where McDonald’s delivers a Big Mac and fries to your door in less that fifteen minutes, children should not be starving to death.