I’ll get this out of the way first:
Yes, once again it’s been some time (some long time) since I’ve written here. As usual, however, I have good excuses. (That last min-post doesn't count.)
The main thing was, I struggled for several months with feline leukemia. At the time it was a very big deal, but I’ve since been given to understand that this isn’t a real thing … Tell that to the cats, I say!
Additionally, my computer caught fire again. I was attempting to remove all of its branding with a rag and some turpentine, but the cardboard shell of the computer soaked that turpentine right up, and the exposed wiring—typically a feature I like!—wrote the last chapter of that story. The upshot is that the branding (lots of undecipherable Thai slogans) has been charred off, and also that “typing” now has to be done via electronic probe, alligator clips, and an exposed circuit board. I’ve only just learned how to do it with any semblance of accuracy, and I still haven’t perfected the asterisk and that upside down Spanish exclamation point. (Useful because it lets readers know that you’re about to say something exciting. Without it, your aye-carambas will be anemic. At best.)
But Mexcalmation point or no, I’m back. For now.
I understand that I’ve lost a significant percentage of my readership; I’m down 2 readers, so the decrease is somewhere in the neighborhood of 100%. That being the case, I think we need to ease back into all of this. So there’ll be no inflammatory content about Candidate Mitchell Romney and President Obama, nothing about the current danger parties in Arabia, no discussion of polar bears, and, after this, no mention of herpes (oral, genital, or otherwise.)
Instead, I thought we could just skim a few light topics. Start off easy.
Writing about science has always been one of my greatest writing-about interests. Unfortunately, this has been very much discouraged at Box Factory, where I’m currently doing some temp work. Damien Box, he says, “Dandy! Write up those invoices!” and Charles Factory, he says, “Dandy, write another letter to my wife!” And while there is some wiggle room in the letters to Mrs. Factory (Joan), nobody ever says, “Dandy, write about the sciencey things on your mind!” If anything, they say, “Science doesn’t sell industrial lubricant, Dandy.”
But Damien and Charles aren’t here right now, so this is what’s on my mind: faster than light travel!
Can you even imagine it?! There are enough planets out there that the basic rules of probability insist that there’s a planet for practically everybody. Dinosaur Planet! Pink Planet! Chocolate Mudslide Planet! Cookie Dough Planet! Munchkin Munchkin Planet! If you can imagine a combination of words in front of “Planet,” the universe has it. The problem, of course, is that these planets are so far away. Even if you were made of light, which is pretty much the fastest thing, it would take you years and years to get to any of the good planets. Maybe you have years and years to burn, but I don’t. I have hobbies.
How do you square it? If you want to get to Herpes Cure Planet, but you don’t really have the time? Guh.
Well, I just happened to read today that maybe traveling at the speed of light for years and years isn’t the only way to get to the permanent soothing relief that this planet doesn’t seem to offer. Apparently, the notion of a “warp drive,” which you may remember from Tron, isn’t so sci-fi after all. It’s basically a machine that could bend space, so you could just hop from point 1 to point 3 without spending so much time flying through point 2. It’s like … you know how when you’re trying to solve a maze in your puzzle book, but there just doesn’t seem to be any way to get to the exit? You always end up having to fold the page, so wherever you are in the maze matches up with the exit (or a little before the exit—you don’t want to seem lazy). This is like that, but with space! And the rewards would, frankly, be a lot better than beating most mazes. Can’t tell me that’s not exciting!
I’m sorry. I said I wouldn’t bring it up, but, honestly, this is what’s been on my mind. This whole thing has pretty much been an excuse to get to this point. I figured I’d think of a good euphemism by now, so I wouldn’t have to break my own promise, but it’s not happening, and I can’t get it off my mind. How could I? For the last couple days, I have had a blister like you would not believe down there. I have no reason to think that it’s you know what, but I have no reason to think it’s anything else either! And no matter what search engine I use, the Internet keeps telling me that it’s FOREVER. Uuuuugh.
This is always going to be on my mind. I won’t be able to enjoy a movie now, because I’ll always be wondering when the next outbreak will be. I won’t be able to play a simple game of Frisbee, because I’ll always be dreading the next painful chafe. I’ll never be able to drift off to sleep with a cheerfully smoldering cigar balanced on my naked thigh, because I’ll forever be thinking about the healing potential of interstellar travel, always just out of reach.
Wait. Did you just read that? Did I just read that?!
Ha ha ha! It’s not herpes! It’s another penis cigar burn blister! It seems so obvious now. Duh. I almost feel like deleting this whole thing. You think you’d learn after the first few times you wake up with a burnt penis, but it’s hard to connect last night to today when you got blisters on your thingers.
What a relief. I can’t wait to tell Joan. ¡Aye caramba!
And there’s that!!! Where did that come from?!
This is great. This is a great day. It’s good to be back.