September 27th, 2004

2020 lack of vision

of steamcleaners, insecurity and hangover telly

portrait of herself, sickSick, lying in bed, Tivo-twic as Damian watches Local Heroes, hauling myself upright to try and do some oh no never mind. Read one of the books I'm reading maybe? Fantastic Metamorphoses, Other Worlds Marina Warner, A-Z of Horror Clive Barker, Cirque du Freak Darren Shan, Ritual Magic Elizabeth Butler ... holding the book upright tires me. Ought to be party now, but tired after work ... run into A. He's angry to be back in Oxford, but I tell him it's the right time of year. Autumn is time for the pretty people ... A. agrees and points out a redhead on the top deck of the Brookes bus. Gods, he looks young.

Finally kill the slimemold on the back wall with new gadget, a steam-cleaner. End up spattered with matter (though the wall looks good) and dripping water into the space under the sink where the packet of salt I keep for cold-dying has leaked all over an old paintbrush. Bleach, rust and salt dissolving the skin on my fingertips. What did I buy all that poster paint for? And when? In revenge, the doorlock sort-of breaks, leaving us sort-of anxious about being sort-of locked out. I tell the landlord, but you know how sort-of problems go ...

New-term return of novelty pajamas, new animated series, hangover television. Dick and Dom giving their occupations as flap-cracker and clock-hanger, racing live babies, children dressing up adults as robots and making them fight. Nanaimo back again; RE:Cleanskies Looking for love, not age pants ... funny girl seeks funny guy cracks. The day after I posted the nanaimo strip, I got five messages from it. The day after I post this the artwork gets taken out of the shopwindow. More random than cause and effect, more like making a slight dent in the fabric, that causality can run down ...

House-warming party at jinty's too self-conscious to take out my crayons, feeling ugly, small, and very unimportant ... I'm snarling too much, I can't find that centre. The last few unfinished threads of C Evidence and Changeling 72 are prod-prod-prodding at me. Damian says I need something new in my procrastination chain, but I just want to finish.

Note: the quote in this week's strip is by Aubrey Beardsley. Couldn't find a good reproduction of the picture online, this one will have to do.
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fortean moment in the bookstore

This summer my newsagent closed and never opened again. The newsagent where I bought everything. There isn't another one in the area, not with any decent choice of magazines anyway. So now I have to get my copy of The Fortean Times (which isn't as good as it used to be, but still a lifestyle necessity, for me) from (acketty-thpt) Borders.

Odd aside; when I decribed a Grail theory Pat Mills was holding forth on as having "been in The Fortean Times" he took it as an insult, which wasn't my intention at all. What I meant was it was well-regarded enough to have been featured in what I use as a sort of research digest and alerter to all the unusual, extraordinary, controversial and contested theories, proposals, ideas and incidents circulating in the world. Like zines, it's had to redefine its position a little since the mainstreaming of the internet ... perhaps he was thinking of a Fortean Times that was ...

Anyway, monday night I put a scoot through Borders into my walk home, wriggle through the magazine section (also picking up a missed copy of 2000AD which is similarly good but not as good as it used to be) and stride straight to the till where a box of cut-price videos and DVDs suggest to me that they deserved 30s, which I duly give. At the box's farthest corner is an anatomy lesson on videotape from the Jewish Medical Foundation featuring the dissection of a real human cadaver. For £2.99.

The box claims it's a dissection of the upper extremity, the label on the tape says lower extremity. The leaflet is even vaguer. What I actually have is a dissection of the human hand, in extreme, thorough and highly educational detail. I now know more about the insides of my hands than ever before; the latin names for the tendons, convenient short reference terms for bones and joints, and how the thumb is attached to ... well, actually it would be shorter to say what it isn't attached to.

The strangest thing was that the video ran from bones to skin, giving the odd impression that the corpse was reconstructing itself, all the way from magnolia bones to discoloured fingernails.
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