Tuesday, August 25, 2015

The Old Ones...or...Why I Shouldn't Be Allowed In Public

This should be filed under "yup, she's disturbed and thinks weird dark things" and you're welcome to ignore this post if horror isn't your gig. Or horror humor. Or really fucked up thought processes resulting in inappropriate innuendo. 

Yes, yes, I know it's early to be thinking about Poe and Lovecraft...it's still August, after all. But this week it's been cold enough at night to actually sleep under the covers AND Renaissance Festival started, so I'm in autumn mood. 


I saw some horror art today that was Lovecraftian in nature: black tentacles reaching out of a center point, surrounded by human skulls-and-spines like some disturbing pinwheel of death. It was creepily beautiful, if you can wrap your mind around those two words working together. 

I got to thinking...humans are ever so full of ourselves as a species, even in horror. 

Let's imagine for one second that the Old Ones, Cthulhu and the rest, existed and are indeed just waiting out there in deep space for Hellboy or some foolish person to open a portal so they can come back. Let's imagine Leviathan (Biblical) or Jormungandr (Norse) have been hanging out in the depths of the ocean, encompassing the world, for millennia. 

Imagine what immortality might be like: where anything with a short life span matters less over time because, well, you can always get another one. Seriously, why would they give a hoot about humans at all? 

Humans, for example, live an average of 75 - 100 years. Dogs live an average of 10. Ants live an average of 45 - 60 DAYS. Do we care when a valued pet dies? I certainly hope so. Do we care when an ant dies? Um, speaking for myself here I have to say no, I really don't. 

Do I NOTICE when I have ants? Sure do: and I go about exterminating them so my house is clean. Do I make a point of saving ant skeletons (or exoskeletons, in their case) with which I terrify them and torture their existence? Indeed I don't give their psyches that much thought at all. I suppose were I Buddhist that would make me a bad one...and to be fair I don't mess with anthills outside (I figure that's their space, as long as they aren't fire ants in my yard). 

I have a point.

Given our size, our life span, and our penchant for colonizing every inch of space on this planet, how could humans not be considered the equivalent to ants to The Old Ones? 

Why would Cthulhu bother terrorizing ants, creating a pit of despair lined with bony dead human trophies? Even ant serial killers (not serial killers who ARE ants: that's just silly. I'm thinking the creeps who like to use magnifying glasses and sun to burn the little dudes to death in some disturbing version of a Greek Death Ray) don't stack up the dead anty bits in warning to other ants. 

The pinwheel of death art was neat, but it's a little ridiculous: only a human would create something like that to psychologically affect another human. The need to be FEARED implies a need to be recognized and valued (positively or negatively) by those who fear you: the terrorizer's value of the terrorized's opinion. Incitement of fear response is a defense against something which could potentially harm or kill: a wolf doesn't fear a rabbit and so doesn't make a point of threatening a rabbit. A wolf can (not always, but there is capability) fear a human, and so bristles and growls, attempting through incitement of fear to get the human to back the fuck off. 

Of course, it can be argued that they are kill trophies. Like a serial killer, or an interstellar Predator hunter. You know, like deer heads on the wall for decoration? Yeah, I don't get that either, but some people like it. Trophy decoration implies an opinion of the animal involved. Hanging a deer head on the wall is an advertisement that the hunter overcame something difficult to hunt, right, at least theoretically? Please let me be clear: I DON'T LIKE trophy hunting. Never have. I don't get it: eating the deer meat should be enough in my mind, but whatever. The POINT is that there's some psychological reason for displaying hunting trophies which implies the creature's importance to the hunter on some level...and that I've never seen an ant head or squirrel on anyone's man-cave wall. 

I'm not saying that, if the Old Ones saw humanity as ants, they couldn't or wouldn't exterminate. I mean, for all I know they ARE Daleks. I'm saying it's ridiculous to think they'd bother with psychological warfare, being both immortal and presumably all powerful (or, at least, so much more powerful we are essentially unable to conceive of the limits). 

And so, the idea that an ancient evil god imprisoned in space for a bazillion years, such as Cthulhu, has a collection of human bits either as kill trophies OR as instruments of terror seems...well it just seems somewhat unlikely. 

Now I'm seriously wondering if ants have Lovecraftian style horror stories about humans. "Boots On The Ground, and Other Terrifying Tales" to be read in short story form, because hello: 60 day life span. 

Also, animals with longer life spans than us, which would potentially be more of a pet to Cthulhu than we are: Galapagos Tortoise (190 years). Bowhead Whale (200 - 245 years), Greenland Sharks (190 years), Koi (200 years), Ocean Quahog Clam (400 - 550 years). Obviously, I make no comment on the intellectual capacity of any of them...what does a clam think about for 500 years? 

Oh dear. 


Thursday, August 20, 2015

Yahoo Spam Thinks I'm a Cheating Alcoholic

You know, it seems odd to begin with that a separated woman gets emails inviting her to join "married but looking" cheating websites geared towards husbands, particularly when Ashley Madison just got hacked. Thanks Yahoo, but no, I'm not looking for a Asian girl or a fuck buddy named Adriana (who can't POSSIBLY be 18 since I've gotten spam from her for about six years now). In related news, I also don't have erectile dysfunction, so no need for Viagra or "Ta-Da Phil" tabs (Cialis, people...the medical name is "tadalafil", which makes me think TA DA PHIL!). 

Now I'm also getting repeat emails from someplace called Sober Dawn, advertising a prayerful enlightening escape from alcohol and drugs. And from AlcoholRehab. 

And from someplace called Burial Insurance. 

Yes, I think all three of these are related. 

I keep my yahoo email for exactly this reason: it's the one that gets sold when I join a rewards program or order something online. And...I'm sick enough to be amused at the regular cycle of religious dating sites, credit repair sites, and cheating/sex sites. 

I wonder if I can get Ashley Madison on the National Organization for Women's spam list...

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

DO NOT Google "Velociraptor Arms"

The nearest Starbucks to my house is either a couple miles up the freeway (which is a terrible idea between 7:30 and 8:30am, since I only want a damn coffee and not two hours in traffic for three miles), or a fairly meandering twisty series of roads through an upper-middle-class neighborhood. Of course, I take the twisty roads, because i'm already cranky (hello, no coffee) and don't usually want to deal with people in much of any capacity in the morning. 

Of course, residential roads through upper-middle-class neighborhoods mean many people who seem to work off-hour schedules or just don't work at all: there are plenty of dog walkers, joggers, and too-tight-for-your-age-yoga-panted-middle-aged-women speed-walking in the  morning. But today...

Today I saw a velociraptor. (by the way, my spellchecker wants to change "velociraptor" to "Velocipede" which is A BAZILLION TIMES MORE TERRIFYING* in my brain. Fuck you, spellchecker). 


Anyway, this morning I passed a guy jogging comfortably (meaning, he was neither sweating profusely nor was his face red nor was he panting like he was going to die: in fact, he jogged EXACTLY opposite of how I jog) along the sidewalk in his baggy pants and oversized t-shirt. His clothes hung loosely on a pretty tall and lanky body. He ran with his head unaligned to his body: ie, it was leading the rest of the body by sticking forward just a little. 

And he held his arms at a 90 degree angle with his hands dangling limp, waving a little with his movement. 

You guys, he reminded me of a toothless, pasty white, bald velociraptor who'd missed a few meals. 

Or a large chicken with mange? Do birds get mange? I bet not...whatever makes chickens lose their feathers. He was a featherless bird with no beak and floppy forearms.  So yeah, velociraptor. 

Hmm. Reminded is a poor word choice: it implies I've SEEN a toothless, pasty white, bald, skinny velociraptor. In point of fact, I have not. I'd like to, maybe, but only from a distance. With a large fence, and maybe a herd of cows, between us. 

Um, he evoked the image in my broken brain. Let's go with that. 

I ran track in junior high (that's 7th and 8th grade for those of you who have no fucking idea what I mean by "Jr high" because idiot school districts now call that "middle school" for some ridiculous reason). I remember the rules about not clenching my hands into fists while I'm running, which always seemed unnatural to me, since I rather like my hands in fists...

It's easier to fight off starving velociraptors if I'm prepared. And, as YouTube tells us, Velocirpators are assholes. 

Ok, obviously this post is getting out of control and it's probably time to stop and do actual work. I just wanted to say...googling images of velociraptor arms was rather surprising and occasionally disturbing. I can't say I recommend it, but now that you'll probably do it anyway make sure you look for the standing bear with chain saws on his arms...because that TOTALLY makes sense and belongs in a velocirpator images page. 

*Ah, also, it's completely ok to google "velocipede". Not what I assumed at all, which really just says a lot about what's wrong with my brainpan. 

Monday, August 17, 2015

It's Dorian. Dorian Cruise.

Last week I watched Mission Impossible: Tom Cruise Never Gets Old.

Let me preface this post by saying I love the MI movies, and not just for Simon Pegg and Jeremy Renner. I love them because I can usually see foreshadowing clearly, and so not many plots are surprising. In MI, of course the good guys will win in the end, but damn if they don't take the most ridiculous and unexpected twists along the way that make it fun.


After much thought about Tom Cruise and how he looks almost exactly the same as he did in the first one, I've come to a conclusion.

Obviously, the benefits of breaking into the upper strata of Scientology include a Dorian Gray-esque simulacrum which ages on your behalf.

Is it a Dobby chained in the basement? A painting in a secret room of one of his mansions? A Ring of Power? Super secret cloning technology (in which case, is he part velociraptor)?

I'm sure I'll never know.

And you can thank Mission Impossible for this entire line of ridiculousness.

PS: If you are lost on my references here, please read the following. Do not watch the movies until you've read the books...that's passing go, people, and DO NOT PASS GO.

A Picture of Dorian Gray
Harry Potter
The Lord of the Rings
Jurassic Park

Tuesday, August 04, 2015

It Matters. You Matter.

I tell myself some version of "it doesn't matter" upwards of a thousand times a day.

Not all of that is a bad thing:

It doesn't matter that I'm so sleepy: get up. 
It doesn't matter that I don't feel much like working today: do it anyway. 
It doesn't matter that the dogs made a huge mess: it's their job. 
It doesn't matter that the neighbor kids run through the back yard. 
It doesn't matter that I don't want to work out: I'll feel better if I do, so get going.

The positive mantra is all about learning to let go of irritations that really don't make a difference to health or happiness in the scheme of your life. But as a coping mechanism against disappointments, or hurts, or failures, or depressions, that phrase is both sneaky and insidious.

It's all friendly and casual on the surface, which is exactly why it's so fucking dangerous. Someone stood you up without reaching out at all and you feel unappreciated? It doesn't matter: no big deal, you'll catch them next time. A promise you'd counted on was broken? It doesn't matter. All your hard work has resulted in failure so far? It doesn't matter. That which is vitally important to you is dismissed by someone you respect? Doesn't matter.

I actually catch myself saying out loud "it doesn't matter, I CAN'T LET IT MATTER" to myself on a repetitive loop: too many occasions to be healthy. The devil is in the intent, here, because It Doesn't Matter is a terrible two-faced assassin who smiles charmingly to your face while jamming the knife in further, twisting the meaning internally to "I don't matter."

In dismissing the things that deeply affect my well being, I am saying over and over that I don't matter. Words have power: telling myself I don't matter by brushing off what's important to me just because it may not be important to someone else is both self destructive and unhealthy. And silly, if I'm being honest. But, to quote Pretty Woman, the bad stuff is easier to believe. Yes, I just quoted that Julia Roberts hooker movie. Suck it.

Hmm. I wonder if some version of "suck it" is the key here. Not a sexual innuendo version...today is not a gutter-mind day on this blog, people.

"It matters. I'm hurt/angry/disappointed. I MATTER. Suck it up anyway and keep going" seems a whole lot healthier and...hmm...empowering, I suppose, versus the constant mantra of "it doesn't matter, it's not important" even when something is too big to even talk about.

If you follow The Bloggess at all, you know depression lies with lying lips and fiery pants. While it's not easy to remind yourself of that in the thick of the fog, I have noticed that when I'm better I stop paying attention to the lies. I don't STOP the lies. See the distinction? I've gotten into a bad habit of dismissing myself, my thoughts, my feelings, things that are vital to ME. I've allowed it to continue when I'm not in a low moment by pretending it makes me stronger by not letting hurts get to me. By saying it doesn't matter, and I should just keep going.

It's not true, and by pushing all the things that matter to me in a deep hole in my brainpan I've only created an icky pool of gross that overflows occasionally, flooding me with muck. It needs to be thoroughly scrubbed out and refilled with something actually good for me.

Like chocolate.
Or fun stabby weapons.
Or a harem of Gerard Butler, The Rock, and a few others...

Um, anyway.

The point is: it matters. What I'm passionate about matters. Who I care about matters.

I matter.

And so do you. Don't forget it.