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Dog Bites Man

When Roger was walking down Ventura Boulevard on the way to get a latte he saw a man walking a spotted white and black pitbull. Can I pet your dog? he asked. No you shouldn’t said the man. But Roger could not resist. “I’ll give him a piece of snickers bar I have in my pocket!” said Roger. He reached down to pet the dog and it sunk its teeth into his hand and would not release.

A big commotion in the street. The man, whose name was Jessie kept telling everybody who would listen — i told him not to and this asshole just reaches out and tries to pet my Wally — and he would act it out. The police got there and shot the dog. It’s jaws did not let go.

Roger had to go downtown to an office in the animal department where they had a special saw. The sawed off the animal’s head. It would not let go still. Roger got a ticket and was sent to yet another office, halfway across town where in the basement he was seen by a Dr. Marengo. Dr. Marengo put bandages under the dog head to protect Roger’s skin and sunk the whole set-up in baths of progressively stronger acid. The flesh and skin of the dog head came off until all that was left was the bones. He crushed the skull with a hammer and now all that was left was the maxilla and mandible and teeth stuck fast in his flesh. By this time Roger had gotten to know Dr. Marengo pretty well and didn’t feel so awkward when he took off his shirt — he was sweating vigorously, planted one foot against Roger’s thigh, used a special tool that he had brought with him from the old country (somewhere in West Asia, Roger thought…Armenia) a pair of special brass pliers, grabbed the dog’s mandibles and with a pop got them out.

Roger went home. His girlfriend found his manner “weird”. He slept on the couch. In his dream the dog jaws were still in his hand.

The next morning he called Marengo. “The dog is still biting me in my dream.” “Sure that happens.” said Marengo and gave him the address of a witch in Little Armenia. “You’re going to have to pay for that. Animal Control doesn’t handle the supernatural — it’s just not — it’s not how they do it in America.” “That’s fine.” said Roger.

He went to the witch whose name was Lucia. She looked at his cards. She looked at his coffee grounds. It turns out the dog had been a rakshasa. A long time ago — maybe like the fifteenth century — she had been a princess who always got to have sex with the prisoners the night before they were beheaded. And this was fair because this is the best sex to be had and it was her prerogative as a princess. But then she became addicted to this kind of love-making so that the caresses of non-condemned men felt bland to her. And she started paying the judges to condemn men to death so she could enjoy them. And when she died Jesus Christ condemned her to be reborn as a dog and to be killed for every man she had thus ill-used. And that is why when the dog saw you you felt compelled to pet him. Because she was using her witchcraft to beguile you.

But what is to be done? asked Roger.

They went to the graveyard and summoned the spirit of the demon dog who was the rakshasa who was the princess and put it into an egg. Roger served the egg the next morning to his girlfriend, fried, on a piece of toast. As soon as she swallowed she stopped short, shivered, and gave him a piercing look. She was an evil devil princess now, head to toe.

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Dracula vs. The Robot

i

“How shall we defeat The Robot?” Dracula asked Renfield.

“I don’t know master!”

“He has no blood that I may drink. He has no soul, that I may damn! He has no fear of the creatures of the night! The bat cannot bite through his aluminum hide, nor the wolf rend his steel pistons!”

“I know, Master!”

ii

“The vampire cannot be destroyed by us X-2311J! I run the sub-routines again and again and I cannot reach vampire=dead!”

“Affirmative!”

“We have no stakes, we have no crosses, we have no sunlight, we have no running water. All we have is logic and data. And against this Prince of Darkness these weapons are as nought! Do you see a flaw in my reasoning or fly in my algorithm?”

“Negative!”

iii

Dracula and the Robot took to the sea in a beautiful pea green boat. They glared at each other across the gunwales.

The Count turned into a bat.

The Robot proved how the universe came to be, from a finite number of principles and how, given those principles it would eventually resolve back into nothingness.

The Count turned back.

The Robot trailed his manipulators wistfully in the surf.

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Thoughts are Like Bridges

Thoughts are like bridges. They help us get from one place to another, and they keep us from falling.

Like bridges they vary in how easy they are. Supposing you and your friend are great at hiking. You want to get to a high spot, because the views are good or there’s a nice fruit tree that you want to eat the fruit, whatever. Because you are great at hiking what serves you for a bridge could be very little indeed — a couple of fallen trees or a rock or two. Your balance is excellent and you are able to walk on the slender tree or hop from rock to rock across the raging river. These few little slippery objects are for you and your friend a bridge.

But supposing you are compassionate (or hoping to make a few bucks — it doesn’t matter) and you want to let regular folks who are not expert hikers get to the high spot, to get the great view or the good to eat fruit. You will have to build a river that a lot of people can walk over. Those people do not have good balance, some of them may be in fact pretty heavy. So you will have to engineer your bridge so that people who are not great hikers can walk on it.

It’s the same with thoughts. When you formulate a thought for yourself or a couple of close friends, it will come out one way. But if you want crowds of people to be able to use it, you will have to build it with some engineering, and some realistic sense of their capacities in mind.

Interestingly once you build a solid steel bridge somebody with excellent balance can hang from it or stand on tip-toes on top of it and see something that nobody before could see — not the regular people and not the hikers with excellent balance either.

It’s the same with thoughts.

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Monster in the Basement

…door you’re not allowed to open, mother says you’re not even allowed to ask what’s down there.

Really wanted to know what’s down there!

Asked what was down there. Punished.

Stopped asking for awhile and then REALLY wanted to know.

…Put face against door. Felt the warmth. Heard the thump as whatever it was threw itself against the door.

Waited for mother to leave the house.

Opened the door!

It was a LOVE DOG! It loved everyone so much! It shouldn’t have been in the basement.

The real monster was in the house! It was mother.

Tied her up, put her in a crate, sent her to the city to be exchanged.

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