greygirlbeast: (cullom)
[personal profile] greygirlbeast
0. Comments would be very welcome today.

1. Chilly and sunny today. Our little Indian Summer has come and gone. All three days of it. I left the house only once, briefly, the entire time. I expect no more days in the eighties until June.

2. On this day, eighteen years ago, I began writing Silk. Weather-wise, it was a day much like today, though much farther south. Eighteen years, so that means babies born that day are, as of this day, old enough to vote. One of them picking up Silk today, would be like me, on the occasion of my eighteenth birthday, picking up a copy of a novel whose author began writing it in 1964. These are very strange thoughts. Silk is, lest anyone delude themselves into thinking otherwise, a snapshot of a time, culture, and place long vanished. I am not that person anymore. No, not really. There's a faint echo of her around here somewhere.

3. My mood is lower today than it's been in, I don't know. Months. These things happen, and we stay on our meds, and we speak of ourselves in the third person, and we ride them out.

4. Yesterday, you might have seen a news story with a sensational headline something like: "Giant 'Kraken' Lair Discovered: Cunning Sea Monster That Preyed On Ichthyosaurs.". People kept sending me links to it yesterday. And the best I can say about this affair is that if I were still teaching, I'd point to this as a sterling example of Really Bad Science. One does not find a peculiar pattern (in this case, the arrangement of ichthyosaur vertebrae) and invent an outlandish explanation with no evidence whatsoever. And call it something lurid and ridiculous like a "Giant Kraken." There's zero evidence for the existence of a giant Triassic teuthid (squid). Zero. No fossil evidence. So, to posit that one was moving ichthyosaur bones around is very akin to the Weekly World News having once blamed "Alien Big-Game Hunters" for the extinction of non-avian dinosaurs. In short, it's silly. I could write a long essay on this, but I won't. Even if Mark McMenamin could find fossil evidence for a giant squid of roughly the same age as Shonisaurus popularis, it would still be almost impossible to say it was responsible for moving those bones into that pattern.

5. Yesterday...I worked. Not as much as I should have, because...sometimes it's hurry up and wait. But I did work. Mostly, more planning for the book-trailer shoot this weekend. Only three days to go. And it looks like there will be rain on Friday, which is going to play merry havoc with our schedule.

6. Want to see the American Consumer at its least rational? Just look back over the recent fiasco with Netflix, and the damage its done to the company (a two-thirds stock drop since July, and still going down). Netflix CEO Reed Hastings has apologized for the proposed Netflix/Quickster division for rental/streaming services, which is absurd. That he apologized, I mean. People need to cut the entitlement bullshit. Better streaming services will cost more, and the industry is moving towards streaming. Period. I am far from being a financially stable person, but the original Netflix business model won't work forever, and it's wasteful, and is costing the USPS a fortune.

7. Frequently, people have asked me to blog my Second Life roleplay. Usually, I don't do this, because doing so leads to spending time writing that could be spent RPing. But I have begun keeping a journal of Ellen "Grendel" Ishmene's trials and tribulations in Insilico, the life of an illegal Level A clone/Class V AI. It's an excuse to keep myself limber with cyberpunk narratives. If you're interested, you can follow the journal here. Oh, and there are pictures. These days, about the only reason I can find to bother with SL is Insilico, and it's far from perfect. But the build is exquisite, and the RP is probably about the best ever in SL.

8. As for the non-work part of yesterday, I read two articles in the September 2011 issue of the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology: "Variation in the skull of Anchiceratops (Dinosauria, Ceratopsidae) from the Horseshoe Canyon Formation (Upper Cretaceous) of Alberta" and "A sauropod dinosaur pes from the latest Cretaceous of North America, and the validity of Alamosaurus sanjuanensis (Sauropoda, Titanosauria)."* And we read two more chapters of Shirley Jackson's The Sundial (we're nearing the end of the book), and played some Rift, and I read a rather awful short story by F. Paul Wilson, "The November Game," an extremely unfortunate "sequel" to Ray Bradbury's classic "The October Game." If you're going to attempt a sequel to one of the best spooky stories of the 20th Century, at least have the respect and good sense to mind the mood and tone of the original. And that was yesterday.

Twiddling Her Thumbs,
Aunt Beast

* Looks as though there's only a single species of Anchiceratops, A. ornatus, and that Alamosaurus is a valid taxon.

I'm rarely on LJ anymore....

Date: 2011-10-11 05:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lastwordy-mcgee.livejournal.com
...but one of things that keeps me coming back is your journal. You're one of my favorite authors, for so many reasons, and I like these tiny glimpses into your life and your brain and your bones and your heart. So thank you for writing them. You never fail to ring bells in my imagination.

Date: 2011-10-11 05:51 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mistressmousey larson (from livejournal.com)
FWIW, the only reason I've left the house for the past 4 days is because I have to go to work, and to rent movies so I don't have to leave the house otherwise. My boys are out of town for the better part of a week and I am Not Doing Well (TM) with their absence. So, you're not alone in your self-imposed isolation.

Date: 2011-10-11 05:56 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

So, you're not alone in your self-imposed isolation.

Thing is, I could have left. I wanted to leave. I just didn't.

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Date: 2011-10-11 06:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jenjen4280.livejournal.com
Regarding #4 - Really Bad Science in Archaeology

Generally whenever an object, building, etc. is referred to as "ceremonial," it usually means that no one has figured out what its use was, ergo, it must not have had a practical use and was therefore ceremonial.

So the next time you're watching Nova or similar and the narrator refers to something as ceremonial, you'll know it's all b.s. and they haven't a clue as to what it was.

Not much of a comment, but it's only Tuesday and it's been a long, damn week already.


Date: 2011-10-11 06:17 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Generally whenever an object, building, etc. is referred to as "ceremonial," it usually means that no one has figured out what its use was, ergo, it must not have had a practical use and was therefore ceremonial.

Yep. But, for what it's worth, this was not a comment about science in general. Most science (including archaeology) carried out is Good Science. The ichthyosaur "study" is a fluke (no pun intended).

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Date: 2011-10-11 06:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] joshrupp.livejournal.com
Aliens didn't kill the dinosaurs, obviously. It was a cult movement. When they saw the asteroid it set off a Rapturist response, where only atheistic dinosaurs (identified by proto-feathers) were not allowed to drink the Kool-Aid.

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Date: 2011-10-11 06:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] seph-ski.livejournal.com
Regarding #4, I'm sorry if I added to an onslaught of annoyance. "In short, it's silly." For what it's worth, that's why I shared. The io9 write-up didn't seem to be taking itself too seriously, and I found it a delightful fantasy. I didn't really think anyone was supposed to take it as good science.

And as far as the Netflix thing, utterly ridiculous. The histrionics over the fee increase and company changes were pathetic. I love my Netflix account, it's worth the price increase, and if they wind up going under now because of a bunch of entitled first world whiners had a hissy, I'm going to be really put out.

Happy Silk Anniversary. Definitely one of my favorite books. I love where you've taken your words and stories lately, but I love where you've been too.

Date: 2011-10-11 06:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

The io9 write-up didn't seem to be taking itself too seriously, and I found it a delightful fantasy. I didn't really think anyone was supposed to take it as good science.

Well, McMenamin is presenting his paper before the prestigious the annual meeting of the Geological Society of America. But, already, he's being dismissed by many paleontologists.

And as far as the Netflix thing, utterly ridiculous. The histrionics over the fee increase and company changes were pathetic. I love my Netflix account, it's worth the price increase, and if they wind up going under now because of a bunch of entitled first world whiners had a hissy, I'm going to be really put out.

Agreed. And they have almost (and might yet) kill the company over this. And then what? Amazon?

Happy Silk Anniversary.

Thank you.

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Date: 2011-10-11 06:58 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] xjenavivex.livejournal.com
Happy Silk Anniversary. When you think about the book now, does it far away like an old year book or picture album might?

Date: 2011-10-11 07:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

When you think about the book now, does it far away like an old year book or picture album might?

I don't think so, no. It just seems like something I did a very long time ago. Almost like something someone else did.

Date: 2011-10-11 07:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mizliz13.livejournal.com
Regarding "and we speak of ourselves in the third person": My best friend maintains that the majority of people who do this are either A) royal or B) insane. (Group C, I suppose, could be both.)
Edited Date: 2011-10-11 07:09 pm (UTC)

Date: 2011-10-11 07:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

My best friend maintains that the majority of people who do this are either A) royal or B) insane. (Group C, I suppose, could be both.)

I'll take Group C.

Date: 2011-10-11 07:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mizliz13.livejournal.com
Also thought I'd just say that as you are not the same person who wrote Silk, I'm not the same reader of Silk. For truth, I've shed many skins since I first read it (as I'm sure others have, naturally). But the interest in and appreciation of your work has always been there. The one constant, I figure.

Date: 2011-10-11 07:25 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Also thought I'd just say that as you are not the same person who wrote Silk, I'm not the same reader of Silk.

This makes perfect sense. Just as this is not the same world.

Date: 2011-10-11 07:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sfmarty.livejournal.com
As your first commenter today said, I find your words endlessly interesting.

I must ask tho, how is your hip?

Date: 2011-10-11 07:34 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

I must ask tho, how is your hip?

Oh, it's fine now. It was a short-term injury. I've let myself get so out of shape these happen frequently. But thanks for asking.

Date: 2011-10-11 07:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] from-ashes.livejournal.com
I could not agree more with you about Netflix. It only stands to reason that they would eventually have to raise their prices in order to stay in business and make a profit. And the splitting of the two divisions was a good move because as more people turn to streaming, DVD rentals will be down.

I was disappointed that Netflix bowed to the complainers about Netflix/Qwikster instead of following their vision for the future. The reason Netflix has been as successful as it has been is due to the fact that they have always moved ahead before the competition.

It almost sounds like Reed Hastings has lost his nerve. Which is not the way to do business in media in this day and age. It takes balls to make some of the decisions he's made, knowing there would be some fallout, but in the end, he should do what's right for the company, not for those who complain the loudest.

And now, the consumers think that once more, they are always right. The thing is, they're not. I could go into a whole other diatribe on that, but I'll stop now.

Date: 2011-10-11 07:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

I was disappointed that Netflix bowed to the complainers about Netflix/Qwikster instead of following their vision for the future. The reason Netflix has been as successful as it has been is due to the fact that they have always moved ahead before the competition.

Agreed. But what do you do when you watch your stock value plummet like that?

It takes balls to make some of the decisions he's made, knowing there would be some fallout, but in the end, he should do what's right for the company, not for those who complain the loudest.

Again, unfortunately, his true responsibility is to his share holders, who are the company...

It all sucks.


And now, the consumers think that once more, they are always right. The thing is, they're not.


Bingo.

Date: 2011-10-11 07:59 pm (UTC)
ext_39302: Painting of Flaming June by Frederick Lord Leighton (Glass Octopus)
From: [identity profile] intelligentrix.livejournal.com
I've been amused at all the stories about the cephalopod/kraken, but I've been almost universally annoyed at the constant conflation/confusion/interchangability of octopus and squid. Those are two very very different animals, with different behavior and feeding patterns, and it really gets my goat when people seem to hand-wave that away.

That said, it there were any creature I'd nominate for the ability to create self-portraits, it would be the octopus. (Which, however, doesn't make the story any less outlandish.)

Date: 2011-10-11 08:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Those are two very very different animals, with different behavior and feeding patterns, and it really gets my goat when people seem to hand-wave that away.

Yep.

Date: 2011-10-11 08:03 pm (UTC)
sovay: (Rotwang)
From: [personal profile] sovay
if I were still teaching, I'd point to this as a sterling example of Really Bad Science.

Here. This appears to be actual science and very cool: the children who painted in caves.

Date: 2011-10-11 08:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

That is very, very cool!

Silk

Date: 2011-10-11 08:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] subtlesttrap.livejournal.com
I finally tracked down the Gauntlet Press HC, signed edition of Silk (with signatures of both you and the indomitable Poppy Z Brite)! Your preface included in the Gauntlet Press edition (why small press limited editions are always better) reflects much of your sentiment in this anniversary post ...it's the first that most troubles me as a writer-that I invested so many months of my life writing a book about a time vanished more quickly that I could record it.(Preface p. V)

I love it because its such a badass love letter to all things that are Gothic and beautiful and awful. I just re-read and I enjoyed it more now in 2011 at 31 even more than I did when reading it the first week it came out when I was 19 in 1999. Reading it in the larger context of all your work to date gave it a fullness now that maybe it didn't have for me back then. Knowing there will be Murder of Angels and ensuing crossovers in stories as varied as "Bainbridge" makes the read better, not worse.

Re: Silk

Date: 2011-10-11 08:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Your preface included in the Gauntlet Press edition (why small press limited editions are always better) reflects much of your sentiment in this anniversary post ...it's the first that most troubles me as a writer-that I invested so many months of my life writing a book about a time vanished more quickly that I could record it.(Preface p. V)

Yeah. That was an angry reaction to a lot of reviews that, in 1998, said a book written about 1993-944, and finished in 1996, was dated. Yesterphobia.

I love it because its such a badass love letter to all things that are Gothic and beautiful and awful.

Thank you.

Reading it in the larger context of all your work to date gave it a fullness now that maybe it didn't have for me back then. Knowing there will be Murder of Angels and ensuing crossovers in stories as varied as "Bainbridge" makes the read better, not worse.

On the one hand, I am glad you feel this way. On the other, I very much regret all that crossover and tying the books together. It's something I'll be mostly avoiding in future novels (well, beginning with The Red Tree). I've even thought of rewriting "Bainbridge" to rid it of the connection to Silk and Murder of Angels. I truly believe each of those novels would have been stronger if each could have stood on its own.

the longness of you...

Date: 2011-10-11 08:27 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lost-typeface.livejournal.com
item 2 (silk) last sentence of clause.

echo of her...

what endures (my sense of it) in reading your stuff is a feeling that you are reading the stories to me. like your there telling me the story??? i love the feeling (even if it's me dreaming it).

and this unique to you.

Re: the longness of you...

Date: 2011-10-11 08:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

echo of her...

I don't think I could say it any better.

Date: 2011-10-11 10:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pepsiswinger.livejournal.com
2. God, it's been three years since I read this book, and I can still vividly remember that time period. My best friend and I had just discovered Poppy Z. Brite, which in turn led me to finding Silk. I remember that the light fixtures in my bedroom were broken, so I was reading everything under the dim glow of a dusty old lamp that I brought in from the garage, and I had this bag of Halloween candy that we still had leftover from October, which I would pick at between chapters (and that would explain why I always want a tootsie pop when I see the cover). I also had this song in constant rotation while reading it;



Okay, getting a little nostalgic. Long story short, I loved Silk, and it was the perfect gateway into your work.

Date: 2011-10-12 04:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Thank you for the spidery love. And the song. I'd not heard this bad, and it rocks.
Edited Date: 2011-10-12 04:06 am (UTC)

(no subject)

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Date: 2011-10-11 10:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ashlyme.livejournal.com
For me, Silk's an echo of an earlier time, when I was something of a tart and threw myself at men and women without guilt; likewise, with drinking and smoking. It was an important novel to me. Sorry if this sounds pompous as fuck.

I grew up with your books, I guess. And I'm happy and proud to say that. I loved Spyder, then Chance and Deacon. Later, Sarah.

Date: 2011-10-12 03:56 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

I grew up with your books, I guess.

That is so weird to hear.

Date: 2011-10-11 11:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] wolfsilveroak.livejournal.com
Although I think the name 'Qwikster' was utterly ridiculous and splitting the company would have been akin to killing it- why fix what's not broken and try to change what works school of thought here, in the long run, it's their company and I can either deal with it or take my money elsewhere.

The price increase/division of DVD and streaming only made us sit down and really consider how much we used either service, was it worth paying for something we didn't use but rarely (streaming in our case). It wasn't worth it to us to keep paying $8/mon for something we don't really use, so we dropped streaming and upped our DVD plan to 2 DVDs, unlimited from one. In the end, it saves us $4/mon, but it's still something we use regularly and often, so worth the price reduction.

I get that quite a few users were unhappy with the price increase and decided to leave- that's their choice, obviously, but really, Netflix could have gone about explaining WHY they were increasing prices than they did. And I think THAT is what really pissed people off.


Giant Krakens, indeed. Next thing you know they'll claim there were dragons like in the fairy tales...

Date: 2011-10-11 11:35 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] opalblack.livejournal.com

Finally, the parents have left for the airport. My dad travels like a H2G2 fan, as do I, and my mum travels like an epiphyte, which is to say, very badly.

Me & Baz, we go "wallet, keys, phone, smokes; camera, towel, meds, underpants; let's go." I might take a phrasebook, since I need to be able to say "No garlic please, I'm allergic" in every language on the planet.

Mum has packed for every wild imaginary scenario, reminded me to eat the fruit and water the plants and open and shut the windows and unplug things if there's a storm and and and and, and in case they are suddenly attacked by a yeti in the tasmanian rainforest she has packed the yeti repellant, the lucky gong, and a backup supply of yeti repellant, and reminded me that there's strawberries in the fridge and spare toilet paper in the hall cupboard and that I should call Baz for his birthday.

For the last two days I've just been waiting and praying for them to leave already. It's supposed to be a holiday. You know, relaxing and that? Somehow she managed to turn it into the year's single greatest source of stress and strife.

So for ten glorious days, I have the house to myself. After being around for mum's travel planning, I need a fucking holiday.

Date: 2011-10-11 11:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] r-darkstorm.livejournal.com
I remember being bored, at my local library, looking for something I hadn't read a million times, and finding Silk... And not wanting to return it after. It haunts my dreams to this day, and cemented the fact that I would be a fan of yours for life. This was about... Five years ago. I still want to find my own copy of Silk...

Date: 2011-10-12 03:57 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Easy enough to snag a copy of Silk. Just get the paperback off Amazon, new.

Date: 2011-10-12 02:17 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] hessit.livejournal.com
Giant 'Kraken' Lair Discovered: Cunning Sea Monster That Preyed On Ichthyosaurs.
Yet another reason they will try to justify "creationism" alongside science classes.
Arhhgh!!!

Date: 2011-10-12 03:58 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

It happens. Though, I think this one is so weird the creationists aren't bright enough to notice.

Date: 2011-10-12 02:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gtmoore.livejournal.com
I remember seeing Silk at the bookstores when it came out but it didn't quite catch my interest. Then Murder of Angels came out and "Onion" appeared in the World's Best Fantasy and Horror and I was in a much more receptive head space, and I ended up buying everything of yours that I could find in print. I still re-read it every couple of years.

Date: 2011-10-12 03:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Then I;m glad you were, at last, persuaded.

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Date: 2011-10-12 05:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lady-tigerfish.livejournal.com
I was pleased that your erasure of the eighties did not, apparently, extend to include fans of yours born in that decade. I don't know if it was an accident or a conscious act of mercy, but either way, I appreciate it.

That said, I guess I bring a different perspective to all the Silk reminiscing. I didn't discover you until my early twenties, when The Red Tree was circulating in the hands of various respected friends and bloggers whose opinions on fiction I tended to trust. I'd never heard of you at that point, but The Red Tree piqued my curiosity, I enjoyed it immensely, and I began to work backwards from there.

As such, when I read Silk, it was not as someone who even remembered the early-nineties goth culture that serves as the novel's backdrop. I was quite literally a kid in the early nineties, and I probably didn't even know what the word "subculture" meant. I wouldn't actually start exploring subcultures 'til nearly a decade later; unless they're raised into them, kids simply don't have the access, and many of the best ones contain a great deal that isn't appropriate for children anyway. That's good, that's often as it should be when adults are carving out a small piece of the world for themselves.

Still, even as someone who never orbited those circles, the book resonated with me. I'm reminded of you saying in an earlier post, with regards to The Stand, that all great novels are, to some degree or another, "of their time." The Stand was a piece of the world of your childhood/early adolescence; Silk was a heretofore-unseen piece of the world of mine. I have to say, I was fascinated by the glimpse, even as I saw echoes of that world in the world I know now.

And then there are the other, older, vaster things your books contain, so old and vast as to seem timeless to our short-lived human minds. And the complex, fragile psyches of individual humans themselves, which remain fundamentally human, even if the world outside them becomes, in time, unrecognizable. They contain a sort of timelessness too.

(Unless you're talking about a truly transhuman future where we're okay with changing our brains, and I suppose that is a possibility, particularly if the change offered some tangible benefit. Non-modified humans will probably seem pretty damn alien to those hypothetical people. But I digress.)

So yes. All this is rather a roundabout way of saying how Silk looks to at least one person who was not a part of the world it describes. And while I am not eighteen (which I consider somewhat of a blessing--in no way was I responsible enough as a child to live in a world where YouTube uploads were possible), I can definitely say that the novel still has power for someone who is twenty-five, and that this particular someone will likely be loaning her copy out to a few of her eighteen-year-old friends in future.

Date: 2011-10-12 05:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

I was pleased that your erasure of the eighties did not, apparently, extend to include fans of yours born in that decade. I don't know if it was an accident or a conscious act of mercy, but either way, I appreciate it.

Oh, millions were erased. It's just that no one can remember them, since they were never born.

I'd never heard of you at that point, but The Red Tree piqued my curiosity, I enjoyed it immensely, and I began to work backwards from there.

I half of mind to say ignore the older books, wait for The Drowning Girl, and, in the meantime, read the short-story collections.

Still, even as someone who never orbited those circles, the book resonated with me. I'm reminded of you saying in an earlier post, with regards to The Stand, that all great novels are, to some degree or another, "of their time." The Stand was a piece of the world of your childhood/early adolescence; Silk was a heretofore-unseen piece of the world of mine. I have to say, I was fascinated by the glimpse, even as I saw echoes of that world in the world I know now.

It's odd how people forget, or never learn this: That novels are temporal snapshots.

(Unless you're talking about a truly transhuman future where we're okay with changing our brains, and I suppose that is a possibility, particularly if the change offered some tangible benefit. Non-modified humans will probably seem pretty damn alien to those hypothetical people. But I digress.)

For the record, whatever will or will not happen, I'm not a transhumanist.
Edited Date: 2011-10-12 05:50 pm (UTC)

(no subject)

From: [identity profile] lady-tigerfish.livejournal.com - Date: 2011-10-12 06:19 pm (UTC) - Expand

Date: 2011-10-12 05:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jdack.livejournal.com
1993... damn. I guess I must have been reading Snow Crash right about then.

I don't know jack about that area of science but soon as I saw that "Kraken" story yesterday the innate skeptic in me immediately when "yeah, right."

Date: 2011-10-14 09:19 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kore-on-lj.livejournal.com
Whoo, agoraphobia! More fun than a barrel of....well, Ichthyosauruses, I guess. (Ichthyosauri?) Well, I don't know if you have agoraphobia. I have agoraphobia, and what you have sounds awfully similar. There are days when even the medium-sized apartment feels too big. Those are not good days.

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