greygirlbeast: (hatter2)
[personal profile] greygirlbeast
I know it's gonna be a goddamn weird day when the first thing I read after crawling (moaning) from bed is an article in The Economist. But, really South Carolina people. Newt Gingrich? Newt fucking Gingrich? That crackpot from the radio? A paragon of Southern white conservative sleaze who's clearly proud of being a paragon of Southern white conservative sleaze. Is anyone actually believing this shit about "open" marriages that he's spouting? But, back to the aforementioned article, I have to quote this bit:

As nuts as it may seem to those of us who belong to smaller, more vulnerable segments of the population, conservatives feel backed into a corner by the broader culture, and they detect in Mr Gingrich's pharisaic diatribes the hopeful will to fight, the promise of punching their way back to uncontested supremacy. That Mr Gingrich is a cartoon of a corrupt demagogue doesn't seem much to matter. Not only do conservatives believe Mr Gingrich feels their pain, they believe he seeks their revenge.

I'm imagining redneck Tea-Partygoers googling pharisaic, because that's a damn fine cup of irony (sorry, Mr. Lynch).

---

Yesterday was pretty much a bust. I wrote a measly 491 words on "The Diamond Friendly," and I think I'm about to shelve it a second time. I could try to explain what's gone wrong, but it would probably amount to a treatise. Having lately read so much dull, flavorless sf, I'd really like to write a bit of sf that, at the very least, can be called neither flavorless nor dull. Thing is, so much of that bad sf I've been reading is bad not because, I suspect, the writers in question are necessarily bad writers. I know that some of them aren't. It's because good sf – especially that of the futuristic variety – requires the author to have a firm grasp of sociology, psychology, linguistics, pop culture, economics, history, politics, and never mind the fields of science and technology relevant to the story at hand (besides sociology and psychology, I mean). You have to know, or at least be able to lay your hands on, all these disparate sources of data if you are to imbue your story with the least jot of authenticity, and then you have to start juggling them, and keep it all in the air while you write (I suppose this is done with the toes, since the hands are occupied), snatching the information you need as you need it. Mixing and matching, splicing and melding.

And here I am, in a crush of deadlines, setting out to write what would be an approximately ten thousand word hardcore "biopunk" (can we please, please, please stop punking?) story, spoken by its interauthor in a quasi-fictional argot I'm devising from a hundred sources for use in the mid 2050s...and...yesterday, I realized I had to step back. I started the story last month, then set it aside. I am going to write this dark, dark story about what [livejournal.com profile] corucia has deftly termed "somajakking." But I don't think I can write it now. Maybe I'm wrong, and by the end of the day I'll have figured it out, how to do this and everything else and not break my brain. I just don't know. A writer knows her life has grown peculiar when she begins to feel guilty about taking the time and energy to, you know, write a short story.

---

I don't like to talk about my infirmities in the blog. I just don't. I think, mostly, because I dislike the inevitable commiseration. "I know just how you feel." That sort of thing. I understand how many human beings find comfort in commiseration, but I don't. Anyway, I'm drifting. Point is, I've had this fucking migraine for eight days, as of today, which beats my old record by three days...and I've been trying to persevere. But I'm starting to slip. The formulation of coherent – never mind artistic – thoughts while this railroad spike is being removed and reinserted into random parts of my skull...I think the appropriate word is maddening. There must be a word for people who can remain articulate while in excruciating fucking pain, but, if so, it escapes me. Or I never learned it. Anyway, please do not commiserate. Mostly, I just wanted this down for the record, so I can remember, some day hence, that I once had an eight-day (or longer) headache.

---

I was going to write about playing too much SW:toR. I was going to write about reading The Dragon Seekers, and how it pains me to revisit the life of Gideon Mantell – the man who, among many other amazing achievements, named the second dinosaur* ever described, Iguanodon (1825) – but died poverty ridden in 1852, as do many paleontologists today. Mantell also discovered and described Hylaeosaurus (1833), the third dinosaur to be described. Instead, I wrote about all that other stuff. And now I have to go try to write that which I am paid to write.

When Evening Calls So Hard,
Aunt Beast

* The term dinosaur was coined in 1842 by Sir Richard Owen.

Date: 2012-01-25 05:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] laudre.livejournal.com
"Pharisaic." I don't think I've ever encountered that word before, but I can't think of one more accurate to describe Newt. (A name that is a disservice to slimy bottom-feeders everywhere, I might add.)

On Facebook, someone responded to Jon Stewart's reaction to Newt's debate performance (http://2012.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/01/jon-stewart-loses-his-marbles-over-newts-hypocrisy.php?ref=fpnewsfeed) ("You're a Washington outsider? You are THE Washington insider! When Washington gets its prostate checked, it tickles you!") by stating that "Obama's just as big a hypocrite as [Gingrich], and they all are, on both sides." I asked him to please provide a citation or example of hypocrisy on the part of Obama equal to Gingrich's: marshalling Congress to impeach Clinton over an affair with a younger woman, while Gingrich was doing exactly the same thing. And, might I add, allegedly demanded "permission" for an "open marriage" from his wife at the time, after six years of said affair, and by "open marriage" he meant "I can screw around and you can't hold it against me in divorce court," because dollars to donuts he would have flipped his shit if she'd said "Open marriage? Sure, I'll go bang the pool boy now."

Date: 2012-01-25 05:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

It hurts when I laugh. But thank you.
Edited Date: 2012-01-25 05:46 pm (UTC)

Date: 2012-01-25 05:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lee-in-limbo.livejournal.com
No commiseration. Just wishing your head would clear. Mine just did, so I'm getting stuff done at last. Genuinely hoping you get there too, and soon.

Date: 2012-01-25 06:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ashlyme.livejournal.com
Beast, have you read a graphic novel called "Bone Sharps, Cowboys, and Thunder Lizards"? It's about Marsh, Cope, and the Bone Wars. I remembered Martin had a copy and wondered if it was the kind of thing that might interest you.

- Ash

Date: 2012-01-25 06:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

east, have you read a graphic novel called "Bone Sharps, Cowboys, and Thunder Lizards"?

I have. And I've read many books on Cope, Marsh, and their feud (I'm a Cope woman, myself). In 1992, I actually published a paper untangling an incredibly esoteric taxonomic problem created by Marsh and Cope's bickering.

Date: 2012-01-25 06:13 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] joshrupp.livejournal.com
I know JUST how you feel about commiseration ...

Date: 2012-01-25 06:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Now, that was just gratuitous.

Date: 2012-01-25 06:27 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] timesygn.livejournal.com

(can we please, please, please stop punking?)

Those who agree form a new subgenre: Punkpunk. We've elected you president. Congratulations!

Date: 2012-01-25 06:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Alas, I actually proposed punkpunk at some point....

Date: 2012-01-25 07:14 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] timesygn.livejournal.com

Hey. Great minds ...

Date: 2012-01-25 10:38 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] stsisyphus.livejournal.com
Ahem. (http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/PunkPunk)

Date: 2012-01-25 11:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

You just killed by brain.

Date: 2012-01-25 06:38 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kurtmulgrew.livejournal.com
I can't believe Newt won here. Although, this state is brimming with idiots.
Edited Date: 2012-01-25 06:40 pm (UTC)

Date: 2012-01-25 06:39 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] captaincurt81.livejournal.com
I hope the migraine record stops at eight days. That's way more than enough pain.

Date: 2012-01-25 06:58 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] humglum.livejournal.com


Honestly... the multi-day migraines are my job around here. I'm beginning to feel guilty that I haven't had one in a while.

Date: 2012-01-25 07:08 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] humglum.livejournal.com

Nuh-uh...

Date: 2012-01-25 07:59 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lady-tigerfish.livejournal.com
can we please, please, please stop punking?

Especially when it's impossible to tell what, exactly is "punk" about the subgenre in question. It's like it's just become a suffix that means "new micro-subset of genre fiction" now, in which case, the choice of the word "punk" seems very strange to me indeed, particularly considering the conservatism of much of genre culture as a whole (and thus, many of the "punks" in question). Is the sf/f/h world so conservative now that newness itself is "punk?" If so, we're in even more trouble than I thought...

I understood what was "punk" about the originator of the term, "cyberpunk." But the rest...well...I'm largely at a loss.
Edited Date: 2012-01-25 08:01 pm (UTC)

Date: 2012-01-25 08:19 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

Is the sf/f/h world so conservative now that newness itself is "punk?" If so, we're in even more trouble than I thought...

This may well be the case, combined with the creator of the terms wishing to perceived as avant garde.


I understood what was "punk" about the originator of the term, "cyberpunk."


This is the case. Then came steampunk. Then came splatterpunk. All these in the '80s. Then there's a quiet period, until about the second half of the first decade of the 21th century, when the punk explosion began.
Edited Date: 2012-01-25 08:20 pm (UTC)

Date: 2012-01-25 08:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] corucia.livejournal.com

the second half of the first decade of the 21th century, when the punk explosion began

These days, I tend to think that the term 'punk' as used here fits best with the older definition of the word: "a soft decaying wood often infected with a fungus, used as tinder"

Date: 2012-01-25 08:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] greygirlbeast.livejournal.com

"a soft decaying wood often infected with a fungus, used as tinder"

Nice.

Date: 2012-01-25 08:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] ladyblue56.livejournal.com
Newt's version of Family Values: Using daughters from your 1st wife to convince people your 2nd wife is lying about your 3rd.

Date: 2012-01-26 04:13 am (UTC)
sovay: (Rotwang)
From: [personal profile] sovay
I'm imagining redneck Tea-Partygoers googling pharisaic, because that's a damn fine cup of irony (sorry, Mr. Lynch).

I do like The Economist.

I am going to write this dark, dark story about what corucia has deftly termed "somajakking." But I don't think I can write it now.

You have stepped away from stories and gone back to them and they have been good. I look forward to "The Diamond Friendly" whenever it gets written.

I've had this fucking migraine for eight days

Are you and Spooky having some kind of competition? Somebody's got to agree that when you dick-measure with migraines, nobody wins.

Date: 2012-01-26 07:39 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] kendare-blake.livejournal.com
Last night on Colbert Maurice Sendak said, "Newt Gingrich is an idiot of great renown...there's something so hopelessly gross and vile about him that it's hard to take him seriously. So let's not."

Rough crop of Republicans this year. Rough.

Was reading a bit of The Red Tree and The Ammonite Violin the other day, to whet my appetite for The Drowning Girl and Confessions. They can't ship fast enough.

Date: 2012-01-26 01:01 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] opalblack.livejournal.com
If the album Prayers On Fire were a weather, it would be today. (http://opalblack.livejournal.com/131667.html)

Date: 2012-01-26 04:43 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] whiskeychick.livejournal.com
The word you're searching for: strong.

Here's hoping that the migraine falls away. And leaves Spooky alone as well.

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Caitlín R. Kiernan

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