Friday, December 30, 2005
Thursday, December 29, 2005
Saturday, December 24, 2005
A Chirstmas Disco-bhaari!!! Read All About IT!!!
Presenting to you a piece of Panu-Type sensetionalism that will knock this generally peacefully nonsensical blog out of its seat and into MAYHEM.
A research on the nature of Christ's Conception and the CONSEQUENCE on Mankind.
Here's a little sample below:
......I mean, what was Joseph doing with his wife… family planning? And even if he was, why was he not popping the damn fruit, for Christ’s sake? Was he waiting for Christmas to unravel that particular present? (Oops, I think he was…)"
Read and be Amazed!!
Read and be Shocked!!
Read all about the weepy side-effects of writing this particular thing on "aibbappsss!!!"
Thursday, December 22, 2005
Friday, December 09, 2005
- PC, on “The Wasteland”
“Bertrand Russell’s third wife – he had many wives and girlfriends – he really really did believe in free love.”
- PC, on sexual lib
“Has anyone here, in a fit of madness, read any Proust?”
- PC, on Modernism
Tuesday, December 06, 2005
............."We have also sound-houses, where we practise and demonstrate all sounds, and their generation. We have harmonies which you have not, of quarter-sounds, and lesser slides of sounds. Divers instruments of music likewise to you unknown, some sweeter than any you have, together with bells and rings that are dainty and sweet. We represent small sounds as great and deep; likewise great sounds extenuate and sharp; we make divers tremblings and warblings of sounds, which in their original are entire. We represent and imitate all articulate sounds and letters, and the voices and notes of beasts and birds. We have certain helps which set to the ear do further the hearing greatly. We have also divers strange and artificial echoes, reflecting the voice many times, and as it were tossing it: and some that give back the voice louder than it came, some shriller, and some deeper; yea, some rendering the voice differing in the letters or articulate sound from that they receive. We have also means to convey sounds in trunksand pipes, in strange lines and distances. SIR FRANCIS BACON --- THE NEW ATLANTIS
Thursday, December 01, 2005
Thursday, November 24, 2005
Wednesday, November 23, 2005
Monday, November 21, 2005
Just for the record, roles are open. I need 4 actors. That is, If I decide NOT to act, for some reason. So if you feel like some acting, do let me know. I dont think we need any auditions. I have faith in JU.
DO let me know.
Monday, November 14, 2005
Lots more at...
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
- Butt Seriously
A Letter to the Author
Dear Mr. Dasgupta,
First of all, Blabberwocky is somewhat disturbed at this turn of events. Your brilliantly-researched new expose of life in JUDE – using material gathered while dating all of five women to write a “book” (HO HO HO… ahem) is inspired. We at Blabberwocky could never have thought of this act of imaginative innovation – your expose, as we were saying, while being compelling (several readers have been compelled to keep pillows at hand while reading it), is guilty of an act of gross negligence. You have failed to acknowledge the seminal influence of Blabberwocky apropos of the nomenclature of your “book” (HO HO HO… ahem). We at Blabberwocky hereby inform you that we have as yet received no royalty for your use of the term “blabber” in your title. According to our calculations, you owe us exactly 25p – @ 1% royalty on every title sold, you seem to have sold precisely one title, at the discounted rate of Rs. 25. (Between us, while this shows a great love for your fellow human being, it might not be such a sound business proposition). We would also be obliged if you could forward us the name and address of this carbon-based biped of reduced noetic abilities that bought your “book” (HO HO HO… ahem) as we are looking to test our newly-developed nerve gas on somebody stupid enough to let us.
We shall be grateful for an early receipt.
P.S. A minor suggestion, if you will? We recommend you remain anonymous if a second edition comes out. Or perhaps a pseudonym? Egotistical Haverer seems apt to us, but of course it’s your call.
(This is the latest Blab on the Board)
Sunday, November 06, 2005
And maybe you guys cld do something about the actual Blab, the one on the wall I mean.
Thursday, November 03, 2005
The world is full of shit. That, whether you choose to ignore it or believe it, is the fact. There is shit all around us.
And the shittiest part is that we walk on it. The shit has become a world. There is no walking space left in our sad lives. We find ourselves walking in a quicksand of shit.
Of mirthless muck.
The more we try and get out of it, the more smelly we become. The more disgusted we get with ourselves. But the funny, and almost ironical thing is that we dont want to get out of it. Habit? Maybe. Maybe we've just got used to being in this mess. We've gotten used to being disgusted. Nothing disgusts us any more.
No one stands up and shouts. There is a multitude. There is a throng. But there is no ONE who stands up and says that he doesnt belong here. That he wants to change anything. Everyone has got used to it. Everyone has become everything he sees.
And yet, the most funniest part, I think is WHY people dont speak out. Because, by speaking out, they would be breaking one of the most fundamental rules of society. The unwritten rule of being a hypochrite.
If they speak out, if they stand up among the throng, they will be expelled from an exile they didnt belong to in the first place.
Why does no one speak out?
Has everyone reconciled themselves to everything?
WHy does no one stand up?
Speak out. It matters.
Wednesday, November 02, 2005
Monday, October 31, 2005
Checking mail? Surfing? Getting bored right? Want some gossip? Need some scandal in your vein? Need that rush of blood?
Find out who's who. Who's wearing what? Who's doing what where.
Which chick has the tatoo, who got caught in the loo, who gets his arse spanked publicly.
Don't be caught without it. Dont be caught doing it.
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Introductory offer: Rs 40.
Friday, October 28, 2005
It is the oldest ironies that are still most satisfying: man, when preparing for bloody war, will orate loudly and most eloquently in the name of peace. This dichotomy is not an invention of the twentieth century, yet it is in this century that the most striking examples of the phenomena have appeared. Never before has man persued global harmony more vocally while amassing stockpiles of weapons so devastating in their effect. The second world war - we were told - was The War To End Wars. The development of the atomic bomb is The Weapon To End Wars.
And yet wars continue. Currently, no nation on this planet is not involved in some form of armed struggle, if not against its neighbours, then against internal forces. Furthermore, as ever-escalating amounts of money are poured into the pursuit of the specific weapon or conflict that will bring lasting peace, the drain on our economies creates a run-down urban landscape where crime flourishes and people are concerned less with national security than with the simple personal security needed to stop at the store late at night for a quart of milk without being mugged. The places we struggled so viciously to keep safe are becoming increasingly dangerous. These wars to end wars, the weapons to end wars, these things have failed us.
Now we have a man to end wars.
Since my association with Dr. Jonathan Osterman and the being he eventually became are well documented elsewhere, I feel I need only recap them briefly here. In 1959, in an accident that was certainly unplanned and just as certainly unrepeatable, a young American man was completely disintegrated, at least in a physical sense. Despite the absence of a body, a form of electromagnetic pattern resembling consciousness survived, and was able, in time, to rebuild an approximation of the body it had lost.
Perhaps in the process of reconstructing its corporeal form, this new and wholly original entity achieved a complete mastery of all matter; able to shape reality by the manipulation of its basic building blocks. When news of this being's phenomenal genesis was first released to the world, a certain phrase was used that has - at varying times - been attributed both to me and to others. On the newsflashes coming over our tvs on that fateful night, one sentence was repeated over and over again: 'The superman exists and he's American.'
I never said that, although I do recall saying something similar to a persistent reporter who would not leave without a quote. I presume the remark was edited or toned down so as not to offend public sensibilities; in any event I never said 'The superman exists and he's American.' What I said was "God exists and he's American.'
- Alan Moore, in Watchmen (1986-87).
[Refer to my other Watchmen post for more links.]
[the pic: a page from Watchmen, Alan Moore]
Saturday, October 15, 2005
Quizzers might have heard about Gaurav Sabnis. He USED to work for IBM. He pointed out some of the hilarious claims of IIPM on his blog.This resulted in him resigning from his job and being slapped with a 125 CRORE lawsuit. IIPM are filing suits against all bloggers who "defame" their institution. A 21 year old girl who came out in support of Gaurav has also been threatened with a 175 crore lawsuit.
My ignorance prevents me from doing something. Will better informed indivuals please chalk out a plan so that we can prevent Gaurav from getting into further trouble.
Tuesday, October 11, 2005
All hell breaks loose. The entire city seems to be here, decked out in her glittering green sari and his new burgundy kurta. There is an apocalyptic feel to the whole thing, as if this is everyone’s last day alive, and must be made most of. Comparisons to the Black Hole of Calcutta spring, not inappropriately, to mind. You need to pick your way around, taking care to avoid stepping on the innumerable ebullient groups of young men and women sitting on the grass and having the time of their lives. Having navigated this human minefield successfully, you breathe a sigh of relief – the main pandal is a mere hop away – only to sink into wet mud. “O well”, you say, brushing aside these minor inconveniences, “the greater end, etc”, and walk into the mandap.
And then it hits you. The crowd seems to melt away as you walk towards the protima (the process is speeded up if you happen to have, like I did, a friend weighing close to 30 stone clearing the way for you). The sheer grandeur is breathtaking. The Goddess with her large beautiful eyes, the heady fumes of incense, the foot-tapping rhythms of the four dhakis… there is something so fabulously irreligious about Durga Pujo. It is the one time of the year when the Bengali shakes of his lethargy and actually works hard at having fun. There’s song and dance, love floats in the air, old friends greet each other amidst much backslapping; Pujo is when the good times roll, and it almost makes the horrendously overcharged three-hour journey worth your while.
But come next Pujo, you’d be well advised to do what I’ll do – kick off your shoes, order pizza and reread Goodbye to All That. It’s easier on the nerves.
Saturday, October 08, 2005
Its crazy. It is absolutely crazy.
Where were they? All these months? Where were they? The streets were empty, people could walk without getting injured, cars could go from PArk Street to New Ampire in 10 minutes. So where did they come from?
How many are there?
We just die for a line, dont we? I mean, we all just adore lines. When the Durga Pujo is NOT on, then we just have to be satisfied with the occasional auro line. But Come October..Wohooooo! Any line baby! You want auto? No problem! You want Bata? Sure thing. You want a pandal? Coming right up!
I saw this line stretching from Golpark to Pantaloons. (I am NOT exaggerating) And for what? For the opening of a shop. Or maybe a pandal.
Am I dumb or are they?
Leave some sugar outside, and in a day you will see ants you didnt know existed. You have no idea where they came from. You never saw them around the house before...And yet, come sugar, and they are there.
But there's a certain warmth to it, isnt there? A certain 'touch'...A feel good factor. One doesnt mind the long queues, the sweaty people, the screaming kids. Its Pujo, after all.
Happy Pujo All!
Samuel Beckett - impatience
Roland Barthes - destructured (Aniruddh suggests 'orgasmed'!)
Mikhail Bakhtin - eaten by circus lions
Edward Said - shanghaied
Thank You. Stay tuned.
Ed's note: Vladimir Propp just folkin' died!
Friday, September 30, 2005
- Thomas de Quincey, "Murder Considered as One of the Fine Arts".
Well, Ladies, Gentlemens and other Judeans-at-large,
This is what happens when you pay too much attention to the nature of God, the hopelessness of man, and the chances of torrential rain in pre-Bronze Age Tenochtitlan. You become a philosopher. Then you die. This is how some of these tyrants died -
Camus: Found exit
Darwin: Became unfit
Descartes: Stopped thinking
Einstein: Diced with God
Hegel: Gave up the Geist
Heisenberg: Uncertain causes
Levi-Strauss: Eaten by natives
Machiavelli: Intriguing causes
Marx: Material causes
Ockham: Shaved beyond necessity
Pirsig,Robert: Motorcycle crashed
Plato: Caved in
Pythagoras: Squared on the hypotenuse
Rand, Ayn: Objectified ego
Rousseau: Contract job
Sartre: Nothing doing
Saussure: Parole revoked
Zeno: Run over by tortoise
Thursday, September 29, 2005
I need a cat. A nice soft, furry cat. A black cat if possible. One who is quite young and innocent. I like cats. Preferably black. I do not want to buy one (read, I have no money to buy cats), I just want to be gifted (?) one.
I have two already. One white cat. One brown and white cat. Now am I looking for a black one. I do not think it is unlucky. I want it.
Does anyone have a cat to give me? Anyone at all?
The smaller the better, and the blacker the better. You know where I'm at.
Tuesday, September 27, 2005
Croweth me day;
He doth me risen erly,
My matins for to say.
I have a gentil cok,
Comen he is of gret;
His comb is of red corel,
his tayel is of jet.
I have a gentil cok,
So gentil and so smale;
His spores arn of silver white,
Into the worte-wale.
His eynen arn of cristal,
Loken all in aumber;
And every night he percheth him
In min ladyes chaumber.
Middle English Lyrics, ed.Luria and Hoffman;Norton Critical Edition.
[N.B.for my classmates:this is not an attempt to advertise my course!]
Sunday, September 25, 2005
Friday, September 23, 2005
[The Exeter Book, fol. 106b – 107a]
Translated by S.A.J Bradley, Anglo-Saxon Poetry, London, 1982
I am a wondrous creature: to women a thing of joyful expectancy, to close-lying companions serviceable. I harm no city-dweller excepting my slayer alone. My stem is erect and tall – I stand up in bed – and whiskery somewhere down below. Sometimes a countryman’s quite comely daughter will venture, bumptious girl, to get a grip on me. She assaults my red self and seizes my head and clenches me in a cramped place. She will soon feel the effect of her encounter with me, this curly-locked woman who squeezes me. Her eye will be wet.
Answer in the comments section.
Thursday, September 22, 2005
Tuesday, September 20, 2005
... for Mandal Bijoy Beg is here!
more from the Evergreen Mirthfest...
A Phoenix, wah!
A work of sculpture
So sublime, so sweet!
A mind so full of peace!
A heart so soft and sublime!
The naked babe,
With so tiny a penis,
Sucking the open plump breast
Of his mother, bonny and nude!
Baby, thou art Innocence
And I Experience!
I am a suffering soul,
Forever lost in gloom
And I do envy thee!
Monday, September 19, 2005
You are my own sweet pussy-cat
And I love you so very much
Pussy pussy o my own nice pussy-cat
I love to give you my tender touch.
Oh your furs are so silky and soft
Your face is so lovely to look at
Your nose and mouth are damp and soft
You are my own sweet pussy-cat.
I'll go to a friend's house to-night
He asked me to take you there with me
There he'll give you cream to-night
And I know you will very glad be.
Saturday, September 17, 2005
we take great and delirious pleasure in informing yoy that we are the first hit on the google search for 'blabberwocky'. yay. Yay. YAY!!!
bloody incredible. all rejoice.
and sandy, thanks for the tip.
p.s: and my blog doesn't even figure in till the EIGHTH page of a google search with the blog name. i demand universal sympathy.
p.p.s: how do you like the colour effects? he he he!!!
Friday, September 09, 2005
We are no longer the first hit on Google. We've been dethroned to No.2. Damn, I say. And blast, for good measure.
Moving on to more serious things, in the light of our guiding principles of cheap trashy sensationalism, Blabberwocky is preparing to unleash the cheapest, trashiest, most sensational article EVER on the Blabberboard. It should be out by the end of next week. Keep your eyes peeled to the B.Board.
Now, Sandy and other coords, I think we oughtta legalise anonymous comments on this blog. AND, since everyone seems so hung up about that word verification jazz, please get rid of it someone. Also, someone please tell me what it is!!
Now, why is everyone so scared of writing here (or on the board, for that matter)?? Please, people. A strapped-for-articled editor's heartrending plea goes out to you. PLEEEEEEEZE write. Or I'll howl. Waaa.
It also seems that there has been a significant upswing in the number of homicidal maniacs in the dept. First there was Priyanka and her Perilous Pen. Now there's Aratidi and her Fatal Fork. I say, is this contagious, this Murder by Household Implement Disease??
Oh, by the way, WRITE, u good-for-nothing slobs. I'm begging you here.
Friday, September 02, 2005
Also, while you're at it, does anyone know why L. Ron Hubbard, in his Scientological interpretation of Eliot's poetry (which may or may not exist), calls Eliot's Modernism as being contiguous with Ayn Rand's Objectivism? Also tell me the exact co-ordinates of the parallel universe in which an Archbishop of Canterbury might be Roman Catholic. Laurence Anderson specifically, I think. UG3's who've attended the intensely rejuvenating Eliot classes, SPEAK UP.
Thursday, September 01, 2005
In a bid to entice those few men from the UG1 to play football, the JUDE Football Faction has decided to offer you hard to believe incentives. The FOOTIE CHICKS you see above are real (unlike their implants). Those who participate in JUDE Football over the next year with be eligible for the WIN WIN SCHEME! In this scheme you will each draw numbers at the begining of the season. At the end of the footballing calender we will select your numbers from a LUCKY DRAW. When your number is selected you are entitled to select your special FOOTIE CHICK (according to club) for a romantic date in Soho, London. We shall continue drawing the numbers untill there are none left. Remember, you cannot choose a FOOTIE CHICK if she's already taken by your batchmate. Before you proceed to completely ridicule this scheme let me inform you of the BUMPER PRIZE! Since there are more FOOTIE CHICKS than men in UG1, the last man is free choose all of the remaining FOOTIE CHICKS!!!!! Too good to be true?!?!?! Listen up people! Due to budget constrains we can only sponsor a single one-way return ticket from London. We thought we should let you know these minor details in the begining...so that we're not labelled Dirty Rotten Scoundrels or any such fancy term. By unanimous decision within the JUDE Football Faction, the first LUCKY NUMBER shall recieve the one-way return ticket from London-Dhaka (Its a short bus ride over the border for God's sake!) We, the members of the JUDE Football Faction, firmly believe that the guy with the last number should puchase his own tickets and not let this golden opportunity slip between his fingers. (You may cheer on your favourite FOOTIE CHICK in the comments section)
Tuesday, August 30, 2005
a lonely dance in
an empty room
long after the music
she steps carelessly
forgetting to feel
cutting her feet on
shards of glass
a picture of crystal and red
and for a moment she forgets
who she is
this poem is copyrighted.
Sunday, August 28, 2005
Monday, August 15, 2005
Sunday, August 14, 2005
Friday, July 29, 2005
Saturday, July 23, 2005
Thursday, July 21, 2005
Also in news, There's a Clean-up Drive on Monday at 9:30am( I think).Check with someone better informed.
Wednesday, July 20, 2005
Blabberwocky is stunned. The BlabberBoard, it seems, was sacrificed to thunder lightning and rain on the day of the BA admissions. An abandonment of this sort to weather fit only for the darkest corners of Hell has cut us to the quick. Indeed, we have been rendered blabberless at this colossal act of treachery. We might even bawl. So there.
However, good news! The Board has been wiped and dried and will start dishing out the usual trash as soon as we get enough intellectually-bankrupt freshers to contribute. (It appears everyone else has wised up by now). True to our stringent quality control, this semester too will see a lack of creativity of the worst sort. After all, we have a standard we never rise above, and it shall be maintained always.
We are delighted to have been informed that we have now become, among other things, an Agony Aunt column. Anything to attract more readers, we say. (Readership was last estimated at 2 editors, the Agonised, 1 Bob Kane wannabe, and the department dog). So, Angry? Lonely? Hurt? Depressed? Suicidal? Maniacal? Ecumenical? Grammatical? Indefinite article? Worry not. Write us at The BlabberBoard, c/o Blabberwocky. Oh, and by the way, do remember the liberal donations.
And now to the freshers (heh heh). We recommend copious quantities of the Jeevesian Pick-Me-Upper before you set eyes on Blab (or rather thick dark glasses. Opaque, preferably). Also, to reiterate, our Cult of Anonymity is now the stuff of legend – in spite of the few determined idealists who are still fighting, in vain, we may add, to preserve their right to individual expression. Therefore, if you’re writing for Blabberwocky, Anonymity is Guaranteed. Trust us, you’ll need it. Of course, if you want to put up bad poetry and be the butt of all jokes for the next fortnight, you’re welcome. We don’t mind a good butt ourselves.
On a more serious note, we have been observing with no little concern this disturbing habit of teachers to unleash examinations left right and centre. What with PROTESTS of all kinds being in vogue this season, we think we should protest against this highly inconvenient practice. So, Blabberwocky welcomes protest literature in prose, poetry and drama. Interesting protest names will receive special mentions. Some helpful tips – Stuff you can protest against: the government, fascism, any more Matrix movies, Doulas cough syrup, the editors’ sense of humour et al.
By the way, did any of you watch LIVE 8?? History is being created. What are we going to do?
Kanti & Sudipto
P.S. Be cool. Check out the BlabberBlog at theblabberwocky.blogspot.com. It rocks. Grab your invites while they last!!
Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Friday, July 15, 2005
- Swapanda on Renaissance Political Thought!!
“In the 18th century opera-houses, some people were fighting, some people were wandering backstage and some people were eating fruit.”
- Tintinda, on Englishmen and The Beggar’s Opera
“Try not to use the acronym for the Oxford History of English Literature – O Hell!”
- SukChau, in form.
“For a long time I have been taking classes with two people. Sometimes three. This is so disconcerting.”
- PB, on being faced with a class of 40-odd.
Dibyajyoti: “He goes to Hell…”
SukChau: “Yes. But he doesn’t stay there, poor
-SukChau, wanting to know the story of The Divine Comedy.
Well, this (along with other, equally cheap potshots at profs) appeared on the BlabberBoard on the 1st of April, 2005, and created quite a stir, believe you me. It seems we haven't lost our flair for yellow journalism yet, eh?
Today being All Fools’ Day, Blabberwocky will carry highly objectionable remarks and expletives. Please feel free to feel offended.
P.S. Blabberwocky is not responsible for the standard of drivel it carries today. All responsibility is merely coincidental.
P.P.S. Blabberwocky’s now legendary ideal of anonymity may or may not be adhered to.
And now, here are the much-debated comments.
Critically analyse and creatively ruminate over the lost locks of Tintinda …
- Who cares why he did it!?! He’s looking DAMN cute!!
- They were beginning to look like a new species of fungus.
- Overheating, mebbe???
- “Rape of the Lock” – someone calling himself Samson Agonistes (methinks this was Samantakda).
- The “lion” minus the mane, ehh?!! (Rafatda, I think)
- Licentious lice.
- The locks were growing inwards.
- They were getting in the way during karate classes!!
- HIGHLY UNFAIR – first he looked like a college kid, now he looks like a schoolboy. Gives him ample scope to sneak up on people discussing him.
- The imagined existence of his locks as knitting yarn for his innumerable pet cats.
- And this one was suggested by the man himself –
“Hadst thou…been content to seize
Hairs less in sight, other hairs than these.” !!!
Thursday, July 14, 2005
Please note: We think our editorial was rather cool.
Blabberwocky is Overjoyed, Ecstatic, and Shocked out of its Smelly Socks to announce that readership has increased, from a previous high of 2 (editors included) to a staggering 7 and a half. The editors claim full credit for this phenomenal upsurge of interest in the inane and demand an immediate refund on their overheads – Rs.14/- for the cello tape and a madur for Rimidi. The pins come free.
It is with a sense of Doylesque beguilement that we note the tendency of BlabLit towards anonymity. You actually believed our “anonymity is guaranteed” bull. It amazes us. We at Blabberwocky feel this is a determined stand in the denying of intellectual property rights. We’re still unsure of exactly how.
In keeping with this recent and evidently popular tradition, therefore, the editors shall henceforth also remain anonymous. We think that’s a rather cool idea.
Blabberwocky’s come out with some great stuff these past few days. We’ve had a triptych cartoon by Anon; a Song for Seventeen Paise by , coincidentally, Anon; severe meditations on the sense of humour of hammers, again by Anon; and a very boring newsletter of the Be Serious Society (founded, among others, by Anon). Which makes one wonder - how, with this enormously talented Anon character around, did Soumik and Aritra ever manage to get put up?
So keep sending us radicalchics and salmonofdoubts. Especially if they’re by Anon.
Now then, here's a sneak preview of the imminent assault on the collective Judean senses, viz., THE EDITORIAL.......
" ..... Write.
Kanti & Sudipto
P.S. Be cool. Check out the BlabberBlog at theblabberwocky.blogspot.com.
Grab your invites while they last!! "
To read more of the scintillating new editorial, rush to your nearest BlabberBoard (or pay me some money and I'll mail it you).
Written with appologies to Douglas Adams and Shakespeare
ACT I,scene i
Enter Slartibartfast and Trillian
Trillian: Here, Slartibartfast. What's up dear?
Slartibartfast: Trillian, speak to Eddy. Quickly (impatient) or we'll hit a star, pronto pronto.
Eddy: You rang.
Trillian: Hey Eddy; be happy be good for once; Prepare the ship! Do what Slartibartfast (oh what a Hunk! ) says. He knows best. Take us through this asteroid belt quickly, and mind the...ah...black hole on the left there.
Enter Arthur, Ford and Marvin
Arthur: Ah! Trillian I see you're working. Where's Slarti?
Trillian: Go away, get back to your room.
Arthur: Where is he, the old town planner? (Aside) Very clever with town planning he is. See he doesn't start with the buildings, he actually starts with the dirt. He says it gives you that individual flair.
Trillian: Can't you see we are trying to save the ship. Go back to your space. If you don't go we will never get through this asteroid belt and we'll hit that black hole on the left. What care these asteroids have for the great President Beeblebrox? To your space. Silence, we're working.
Ford: Great but just remember it's the President we have aboard.
Trillian: There is no other that I love more than myself. If you are able by some art to command these asteroids to their own quarters and make them give up and insult some other weirdly craft. No...I thought not, so look happy and just sod off.
Arthur: I have great faith in thee Slartibartfast. He has never crashed, he knows the ropes, he'll pull us through. A bit like Qantas when you think about it.
Trillian: Steer it gently Eddy steer her, bring her back to main course. Eddy be careful they are monstrous asteroids, careful, steer her right...no left...now left...left a bit more...too much...back right...
Eddy: Would you stop it I know my job, I don't need some one to tell me what to do. Hey guys don't you realise I'm Eddy your friendly shipboard computer here to help YOU and make our journey as comfortable as possible.
Trillian: Shut-up, Eddy what was that a bump, a scrape, perhaps the BLACK HOLE.
Arthur: Stop it you...you dog. I curse you!
Trillian: If you think yourself so clever then why don't you help. Do some work. All the trip you sit in your space playing with that silly thing in your ear.
Arthur: It's not silly it's a Babble fish I might tell you and a very good one at that...bred on the shores of - well I don't know, some bloody good place far off in that part of the galaxy where they wear there skin inside out. I think your a wimp and are scared, Squirede cat sitting on a lion's mat. I indeed do think we will get sucked into the black hole and we will all die.
Trillian: Be quiet! Eddy.
Eddy: Hello there, you rang. Is there anybody there who wants some Tea? I have just put the kettle on.
Trillian: What are you making tea for at a time like this? Can't you see, or haven't you been steering. We are going towards the BLACK HOLE. Eddy now pay attention. Do a uey and get us out of here.
Eddy: No use darlings, there is no way out of this. Nice knowing you guys but I'd like to say guys now would be a good time for you all to gather around in a circle and say a few mantras or discuss what you think happens after you die.
Trillian: A breeze I feel, my body its warping, softening and bending unusual directions. Arthur stop acting like a penguin. My foot has drifted into the back of the console...where's my left arm...Hey Zaphod that's not fair.
Arthur: I see Zaphod you just go and don your peril sensitive glasses and not do anything.
Zaphod: Hey look monkey it's OK by me if you wish to splay yourself all over this cool cabin and turn yourself into funny shapes but just don't do it while I'm watching. Look can't you see I'm in the middle of a crisis, what with my arm flying off with that towel over there...
Eddy: Hello guys I hope you are enjoying the trip. We have entered the black hole and what a pretty sight it is outside, there goes Dame Edna, such pretty colours. Everything out there.
Arthur: Look at us this is getting ridiculous...my arm.
Zaphod: Guys this is great fun but it seems to have the sort of effect on my head as a Pan Galactic Gargleblaster. Ouch!
Ford: Mercy on us dear God save us. Goodbye life, goodbye Arthur, Goodbye Zaphod, goodbye all, goodbye. I'll take the shuttle craft and see you guys on the other side a bit latter, ie Heaven. Ciao.
Eddy: I should like to inform you all at this moment in time that I am not equipped with any shuttle craft but I have booked some to be placed on board when we next dock into a service station.
Arthur: I'm staying to protect the president.
To be continued...(ie,if anybody wants it to)
Tuesday, July 12, 2005
Dreamland in B/W
“Literature affects our lives”, said my father beatifically, “by making our lives illusory. Everyone thinks he’s great. Which is a good thing.” The Megalomaniac Effect. When I was young(er?), the source of all my dreams and nightmares was Enid Blyton. Kirrin Island and the Enchanted Forest, I now find, are my retrospective halcyons. Indeed, so great was their effect on me that I once indignantly decided to stop reading Blyton for I knew I’d never be able to swim to Kirrin. With age, thankfully, such stupid notions have vanished, as have my swimming abilities. But the faraway trees of the mind renew their vigour with nostalgic chunks of childhood. Literature makes me happy.Sometimes, of course, literature can have unhinging effects most detrimental to body and soul. People seem to go insane after experiencing what is now in most psychoanalytical circles called a “Shock of the Rings”. Victims start having mock-epic delusions of grandeur (every third statement is followed by a bellowing “Today we fight!”) and an abhorrent propensity to speak in tongues. A note to you, dear reader, if you are an hapless Elf-apparent – you are not J.R.R.Tolkien. Nor are you descended from a Numenorean prince. So spare us the nazg1. As the Harvard Lampoon puts it, we’re bored of the rings.Once in a long while, literature springs up behind us and takes us unawares by creating out of airy nothing great wisps of life we simply cannot do without. Conan Doyle was bombarded with abuses and requests to bring his hero back from the oblivion of Reichenbach. Such was the impact of Holmes on the late Victorian mind they could not imagine a London without him! Even today, the National Abbey Building Society, which occupies the near-mythic address of 221B Baker Street, employs a secretary to look after the personal effects and answer the private correspondence of Mr. Sherlock Holmes. Holmes has fosbury-flopped his way over the narrow domestic walls of literature and stepped into sacral reality. Like Santa Claus, he has become a quasi-cultic figure ingrained for ever in the popular consciousness. Holmes is dead. Long live Holmes.The plot, as they say, thickens.2The trouble with Thomas Carlyle (other than his sentences, which are purpler and longer than most modern abridged histories of English literature) is his failure to include that most earthshaking of revolutionaries in his list of heroes3 – the Literary Critic. In Gustave Flaubert’s words, “A man is a critic when he cannot be an artist, in the same way that a man becomes an informer when he cannot be a soldier.” The effect literature has on this distinguished breed is Harmful bordering on the Fatal. Every theory seems to have a counter-theory, every new fiction is but a footnote to existing texts, and if they had their way, Post-Structuralist critiques of the Motionlessness of Pseudo-Modern Lyric Poetry would be part of the school curriculum. Of course, the cumbersome task of eliminating the author altogether troubles critics no more – Roland Barthes did that years ago4. In fact, that is what a critic is. A critic is a dead author. We need more critics.Bestsellers affect our lives in various ways. Three of my Sidney Sheldons keep the dresser from tippling over, and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix serves as heavy artillery in deterring pesky little cousins from nosing about my room. Strange thing this, about Harry Potter. Three absolutely brilliant books, and then that Rowling woman had to give in to that “most vulgar of art’s temptations: that of being a genius”5, or being called one, at least. Which is why her books have started setting benchmarks in the paperweight industry. In this respect they receive tough competition from those immortal Mills ’n’ Boonses that make me appreciate the comforting, mundane, tall-dark-handsome-enigmatic-lover-who-turns-out-to-be-a-Bolivian-guerilla-less life I lead. Flannery O’Connor once said, “Everywhere I go, I'm asked if I think the university stifles writers. My opinion is that they don't stifle enough of them.” And that seems to be that.Perhaps literature makes us all better human beings. It sensitizes us, perhaps. Makes us thinking, intellectually-greased people. Helps us understand the plight of our fellow man, woman, child and small furry creature from Alpha Centauri.Then again, maybe not. Reading literature may often be a health hazard. Wodehouse leads to apoplectic fits if taken in large doses, Joyce can be optically debilitating after Chapter 1 (“Bronze by gold heard the hoofirons, steelyrining imperthnthn imperthnthn.”6), and Jane Austen is almost as effective as Auschwitz7. There are remedies, of course. Sleep and rest. Charles Dickens. Lewis Carroll. Sleep and rest. And poetry.“Poetry makes nothing happen”, wrote Auden. Perhaps it doesn’t. But it is beautiful. It is liquid bright and sparkling. Literature need not stop a tank. It needn’t even try. Literature is, and that is all. The rest, as they say, is silence. W.H.Davies, in his poem “Leisure”, writes “A poor life this is if, full of care, We have no time to stand and stare.” In Shaw’s words, “If I could live my life over again I’d catch more butterflies.” Literature lets me stand and stare. It whisks me away to the realm of the Dreaming. And most importantly, it allows me to catch more butterflies.8
1 ‘Ring’, in Elvish or Gibberish or something.
2 Holmespeak. Using such phrases in quotidian speech affords the impression of schizophrenia.
3 Thomas Carlyle. Of Heroes and Hero Worship. Bring your own pillows.
4 See Roland Barthes’s “Death of the Author”. Then see a reliable shrink.
5 Read Jorge Luis Borges’s “The Approach to Al Mutasim”. On second thought, don’t.
6 James Joyce. Ulysses. p. 256. Any other page will do admirably. Every page is equally incomprehensible.
8 “Those out may pout.Those in will grin.”From Henry Carey’s “A Lilliputian Ode On Their Majesties’ Accession”. Desperately wanted to put that in somewhere!
This post is not an attempt to convince all of you to take up Middle English, only for you to support Teleute and myself in our efforts at taking up the same.If you can think of any reasons why the Board of Studies has any right to prevent us from learning about Arthur and the rest of the Medeival gang please do try and convince us that we are wrong, or else help us persuade the Board of Studies...