Archive for May, 2012
I was supposed to publish something related to a Queen of Spades on Sunday, but I was in Sweden with some friends, and although I did record video for something, I was too busy enjoying myself to edit it. I did manage to get some new packs of cards, though. I promise I will publish an extra fun Queen of Spades this Sunday. It will be a video, and it will involve cake. In the mean time, here is a silly picture based on this meme:
Also, to go with my last ill-informed Star Wars poetry, here’s a haiku I came up with on Twitter a few weeks ago:
Their mass destruction
is energy creation.
Let’s make stars, not wars.
It’s really more about nuclear fusion than Star Wars, but what do you expect from someone who hasn’t seen Star Wars? Incidentally, one of the packs of cards I bought in Sweden shows Star Wars characters, so I might use one as an excuse to record a video of the Star Wars poem, or something.
It’s kind of my birthday, depending on which time zone counts. So I’m retrospectively giving myself permission to have fun in Sweden instead of writing something for my blog or working.
Strange things happened; who knows why?
The wingbeat of a butterfly?
The flutter of a software bug
in programs running Earth and Sky?
The will of God, a cosmic ray,
its impact changing DNA?
A whim, a prayer, a faulty plug,
a blunder or a poker play?
Doesn’t matter, it’s occurred:
a change of places most absurd.
A bundle of supposed joy
was startled to be born unfurred;
like bees as birds, and birds as bees,
and hes as hers and hims as shes,
a horse was born as if a boy
and raised in human families.
He voted ‘neigh’ on ‘learn to talk’
and always used his hands to walk
and never to attack a meal
with proper use of knife and fork.
He whinnied for a mother mare,
but human mother, not aware,
assumed his brain would never heal
and placed the boy in foster care.
The horse-boy went from place to place,
exhausting homes at trotting pace
as so-called carers would perceive
a slowpoke of the human race.
They made him food but never kin,
derisive of the horse within,
till one day when he had to leave
a farming couple took him in.
“His heart is good, if not his head,”
his newfound foster parents said.
By day he’d never cease to roam;
by night he spurned his comfy bed.
With love, despite his skittish way
the farmers vowed to let him stay.
At last he’d found a stable home
and slept in there amongst the hay.
Big hearts, big stables, in due course,
the farm took in a crazy horse
and horse-man (for our boy had grown)
was floored by the attractive force.
He saw that she was not a mare,
but human woman stuck in there
And said, in human pheromone,
“Ma’am, you could ride me anywhere.”
They nuzzled, for she liked him too,
more’n any horse or man she knew.
Despite his foreign horsey smarts
he knew what she’d been going through.
They played till they were giddy
up the hills and through the city.
Mixed-up bodies, linked-up hearts
And shared emotions more than pity.
Strange things happen; who knows why?
The wingbeat of a butterfly?
The flutter of a software bug
in programs running Earth and Sky?
Whatever forces took the rein,
this act of horseplay’s not all pain.
It didn’t pull the final plug
and that’s why it may run again.
Once upon a time there were three bears; a mummy bear, a daddy bear and a baby bear. After they had finished their porridge one evening, it was time for Baby Bear to go to bed. So Mummy Bear tucked Baby Bear in and gave him a kiss goodnight, and then Daddy Bear started to tell him a story.
Once upon a time, there were three humans: a mummy human and the two human cubs she’d had the previous winter. One day, while they were out looking for some fruit for the winter, a young bear found their den and went inside. He could smell delicious trash and blackberries, and soon found three piles of it on the floor. He tasted the first one, but it was too trashy. He tasted the second one, but it was too sweet. Then he tasted the third one, and it was just right, so he ate it all up. He looked around and found some fruit, but it was too fermented and didn’t taste good. Then he found a pile of leaves. He was so sleepy after eating so much that he lay down in the pile of leaves and went to sleep.
When the human family came home, they could smell that something was different.
“Somebody’s been eating my garbage!” huffed Mummy Human.
“Somebody’s been eating my garbage too!” moaned Girl Human
“Somebody’s been eating my garbage, and they’ve eaten it all up!” barked Boy Human.
The three humans sniffed around the den, trying to find the culprit.
“The garbage smells like bear!” huffed Mummy Human.
“The fruit smells like bear!” moaned Girl Human.
“The leaves smell like bear, and there’s a bear here!” barked Boy Human.
The excited barking of the human cub woke up the bear, who jumped up and ran away as quickly as he could. And the humans never saw the bear again.
Baby Bear went to sleep, happily clutching his teddy human.
A few weeks later, when the family came home from their walk and Baby Bear found a human girl in his bed, Baby Bear decided to let it sleep there for the rest of the winter and maybe have babies. He didn’t tell his parents, and went to find some fermented fruit to put next to the bed. When he came back, he tripped and fell, and the human woke up, screamed, jumped out the window and ran away. Baby Bear cried and cried and cried. His parents heard his crying, and scolded him for trying to keep the human a secret. They explained that real humans weren’t like the ones in the story, and they had guns that could kill baby bears like him, so he should never try to be friends with one.
Baby Bear cried and cried and cried and cried.
Which way do you see things first? (Click the poems for pdf versions you can enlarge and copy the text from.)
I have not seen much of the original Star Wars trilogy, unless I saw it when I was too young to remember anything. I was dragged along to Episode 1: The Phantom Menace in the theatre 13 years ago, forced to watch the trilogy back-to-back starting at 2a.m. in around the same time period (I fell asleep before taking much in, but not before the guy who was forcing me to watch it did) and watched as much as I could stand of the Holiday Special with Rifftrax starting at a similar hour (I gave up before the end, but not before Wil Wheaton did.) I played a fair bit of the Episode 1 Racer game on the Nintendo 64 back in the day. Almost everything else I know about Star Wars, I learnt from songs and internet memes. I know quite a lot of factlets from these sources, but I have no idea how they fit together. This Star Wars Day, I had the option of watching the original Star Wars trilogy in the CERN Council Chamber, but I was hesitant to lose my Star Wars virginity when I was one of so few people my age who still knew what it was like not to know the plot. It seemed like that would be wasted if I just saw it. I asked Twitter what to do, and the majority said to write ill-informed poetry about Star Wars before seeing the movies. One suggested haiku. So here’s a haiku, for starters:
“Come to the dark side.”
“Why? You’re not the boss of me.”
“I am your father.”
The person who suggested writing haiku wanted me to give a title for it, but I can’t decide on one. Maybe something like ‘Star Family Feud’ or ‘Daddy knows best’ or ‘Zo Vader, zo zoon’ (which is Dutch for ‘Like father, like son’.) or ‘Van Vader op Zoon’ (‘From father to son’) Any ideas?
Here is a poem containing most of the things I know about Star Wars that I could think of in the 10 hours or so since I came up with the idea. It amuses me, mainly because it rhymes, but it will probably amuse you more, since you know exactly how wrong it is. I don’t mind if you laugh with me or just at me. I think I’ll just call this one ‘I have not seen Star Wars, so I wrote some poetry about it.’
Long ago, in a galaxy far, far away,
there was light, there was dark, there were no shades of gray.
And a war was beginning, and stars were being made,
though I don’t know their names or the roles that they played.
I know some were ewoks, Storm Troopers and wookiees
And Jedi Knights, padawans, masters and rookies,
Darth Vader, and C3P0, R2D2,
but Einstein couldn’t name them, so don’t expect me to.
There were Chewie, and Yoda (the OSV talker)
Han Solo, and Leia, of course, Luke Skywalker.
There were Pod Racers, Falcons, and starships deluxe
and cruisers, and Land Speeders (that and five bucks
will get you a Death Star; it looks like a moon
but it’s some kind of space station dealing out doom.
You would think it would wipe out the good guys, but nup!
For some reason, this one’s a cinch to blow up.)
I digress. There’s a thing called the Force Luke must use,
for the good side or bad? He’s the one who must choose.
(Side note: midi-chlorians, what the Force goes on
are Force mitochondria, some kind of boson.)
So may it be with you, it’s stronger in this
one, whose lack of faith hints that there’s something amiss,
but I think Obi-Wan puts him on the right track.
(That’s a guess. I don’t know who he is. Don’t attack!)
I’m a little unclear how the plot goes from there,
but it’s not like I’m bumbling around unaware.
I know what a mind trick or lightsaber’s for
and I know that they’re not the droids I’m looking for.
If they sleep in a tauntaun, then someone won’t freeze
and for Palpatine’s sake, wookiee’s spelt with two ‘e’s.
And it’s Han that shot first, not… uh… Guido? No, Gweebo!
He couldn’t shoot first at a wounded gazebo.
So this guy named Darth Vader, who breathes through a mask,
his wardrobe’s all dark side, you don’t need to ask.
Well he tried to convince the young Luke to turn bad,
and then (spoiler alert!) he said, ‘Hey, I’m your dad!’
And the princess was somehow Luke Skywalker’s sister,
but nobody talked about how he once kissed ‘er.
He vanquished his father, who, looking quite gaunt,
while wheezing could still somehow scream ‘Do not want!’
The End (and I don’t care what anyone thinks;
this poem may suck, but it beats Jar Jar Binks.)
There are a few references to other things in there. OSV refers to Object Subject Verb, the word order Yoda tends to use. Wil Wheaton once traded his Death Star for a Land Speeder and five bucks, which is the only reason I know Land Speeders exist. Gazebos are very hard to wound, but they don’t attack much. And I know Darth Vader screamed ‘Nooooooo!’ rather than ‘do not want‘, but I’m not too sure when or why.
This is not part of the Writing Cards and Letters (have you noticed I’ve been ignoring the letters this time?) project. I’m still planning on publishing a nine of spades by Sunday noon. It will be short and sweet and sour.
May the Fourth be with you, if it still is in your time zone.
Edit: I still haven’t seen Star Wars, and I imperfectly recited this poem at the Open Mic night on JoCo Cruise Crazy 3.