Archive for the ‘blog’ Category

I’ve contributed an article to Let Your Geek Sideshow, a blog from Sideshow Collectibles. This article is about the science behind the fiction in the Jurassic World franchise. Check it out! There’s all kinds of cool stuff on this blog – podcasts, lists, features about your favorite monsters and superheroes, and much more. And if you’re a collector, you’re in luck – Sideshow produces the most quality fan memorabilia on the market.

https://www.sideshowtoy.com/geek/jurassic-fact-the-science-of-fiction-in-jurassic-park/

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As the vinca in bloom

So is the variety of familial

Love, so true, so bright

Multicolored, but sharing

The same veiny leaves, green

We don’t do so well in shade

Let the rays pour down!

A monsoon of light, living brightness

And, as the sun patiens in the pot

Out base, our roots go out into the soil

The rich, textured, moist granules

Of our tiny little home

Wake up, oh sun!

Infuse us with life!

We will comb the breadth of totality

Here comes the bridegroom

In radiance, from the nineteenth chapter

Until now, as the child digs a hole

It matters not where we are planted

So long as there’s light, and the crystalline liquid

Of love

The sun (the Son)

The soil (the home)

The light (the Light)

The seed (the bloom)

The death (the birth)

“Damn it, Farlow! Just bones in them arms? Got any grit?”

Douglas Farlow’s supervisor growled these words from a head atop a pair of ubermacho shoulders. Doug, on the other hand, was “average”, which is a merciful way of saying he was weak and frail. He had been loading the 50 pound buckets of spices into the truck for over 15 minutes. His arms ached like hell, but not as badly as his soul.

Doug knew he wasn’t cut out for this. It wasn’t just a matter of his physical strength, it was also the fact that he knew in his heart that he was meant for something different. Not something BETTER (except for HIM, that is), just different. He had been sending his poetry series, “Beauty in a Nihilistic World: God Save the Overman”, to both small and large presses for weeks. Meanwhile, his rent was due….which is what landed him at the Toyler Grove Spice Company hauling buckets into trucks for hours on end. He thought if only….

“DAMMIT FARLOW!!! GETCHA BLOODY HEAD OUTTA THE CLOUDS! PUSSY!”

Doug dropped the bucket right then and there, finally facing his fears of the supervisor. He would walk right up to the talking sack of meat and tell him what for.

He marched stoically towards his tormentor and put his face inches from the man’s head (chest, to be more accurate. Douglas was quite a short man).

“Well?” Barked the supervisor. “Boy got sommat to say?”

Doug wanted to tell the red, pulsing nincompoop that he was a belligerent, grimy, uneducated fool. When confronted with a stronger man, Doug would imagine the muscled brain attempt to digest a passage from Nietzsche (this gave him a good laugh and permitted him sleep). Doug wanted to tell his superior, as well as the rest of the world, that he had nothing but contempt for a CERTAIN kind of working man – one who bemoans the meek, scientific man…who believes that the only real work is achieved through sweat and repetition (“That’s all right,” thought Farlow. “Automata will soon replace all the toiling human beings.”).

Doug felt the same way about the celebrities…they may have lived in luxury, but they still thought themselves better than the average joe (especially if the Joe were scientific). Politicians were even worse, for at least celebrities had no pretense about TRYING to appear as upstanding, moral individuals. All the greedy trolls in Congress did the same thing as the sex stars, but they masqueraded it with the appearance of selflessness and the giving of alms (much less than they could truly give). It was only an appearance, for they were in actuality the rich, powerful elite.

Will….the domineering will to succeed….POWER is the key to all success upon this planet…..that is–

“You’re fired, you pussy!”

Doug left without saying a word, went to his apartment, and climbed into bed, having intense nightmares about machines and big, brutish men. If only the poor man would realize that though he himself felt judged by all his flawed conscience saw as superior, he himself judged the people of Earth with an even dirtier harshness. We can only pray that the words “hope”, “compromise”, and “release” will someday have meaning for him.

Cycle

Birth death renewal and I can’t breathe

I’ve lost my light I dropped my torch inside

This vacant

Tunnel

I search for trouble

Cause at least then I would feel something

Inside

I’ve looked for years

With empty eyes

What’s dark in me won’t you

Illumine

It’s all my fault we all lose our way

Stretch out your hands and keep the wraiths at bay

I

Can’t

Find my way through this damned labyrinth

I’m

Running out of thread

I

Won’t

Find my way I’ll say the Hell with it

I’m on the verge of giving in

I’ve tried it all

Chased vanity

I’ve looked for calm

But it always strays (tossed by the waves)

It’s not my fault that you’ve lost your way

Stretch out your hands and keep the demons at bay

I

Can’t

Find my way through this damned labyrinth

I’m

Running out of thread

I

Won’t

Find my way I’ll say the Hell with it

I’m on the verge of giving in

I hope someone up there

Can save me

That’s what everybody says

I plead are you up there

So save me

I need to pray for someone else

Save me

(These are lyrics to a heavy metal song I’m recording)

The extremely awesome journal known as The Poet’s Haven Digest has published one of my poems, “So Prays the Pray” in one of their anthology collections. Over 40 amazing writers contributed to this issue, “Darker Than Fiction”, with stories and poems centering on real life murder, crime, and evil…the sad truth that our world is even more vicious than the movies. My poem is an ode to victims. Please check out their website, buy a copy, and check out the other collections they have to offer. It’s all very quality work.

Poet’s Haven: Darker Than Fiction

Check out my music page! The first two songs, “Wish Upon a Reset” and “Old winter Trees” Are brand new. The two songs each come from their own genre, dance and jazz, respectively. The band logo is also something I created, and it contains hidden messages/symbols. Who can tell me what they are?

PSYCHE’S REVENGE

One of the best poems I’ve ever read. If you’ve ever lost somebody, you would love this. Check it out!

PlumbRose


Bright Beauty,

A woman from dust whose skin is pale.

She sat at the edge of a tree,

With her wings spread far.

She was placed in a white robe.

Her smile was enchanting.

It would send cascades of hope to you.

But if you gazed upon her eyes

They would capture you,

Pulling you fast into a new world

Where they say it is more real than here.

A place where she says our Father lives.

She reads words from His book and tells me

“It is beyond comprehension.

That no eye has seen,

That no ear has heard.”

His words pounded like thunder through my ears.

……….

As I looked at Her hair (it was long and blonde),

She left behind a shadow

That cast her legacy.

It swallowed me up

In a mixture of dark suffering.

I fell onto a path that had been laid out for…

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It was announced recently that the metal core outfit known as Underoath is no longer a Christian band. This shocked the Hell out of many, myself included, but it only took a trip through the rest of their albums for me to realize they’ve been wrestling with the issue for a long time (especially in the last one “Disambiguation”) – discs riddled with doubt and uncertainty, even from the beginning.

While their new record, “Erase Me” does explore issues of questioning (in ways that outdo both Bring Me the Horizon and Marilyn Manson), it is far from blasphemous. There are enough “God save me” references to satisfy any Christian…or, better put, any hopeful spiritual person…There’s a lot on this disc that Fundamentalists would have a big problem with. But that’s rock and roll. That’s art. And though I believe in Jesus Christ as my savior, I am still happy to call this album the best set of songs I have heard since 2010 (Danger Days….).

There is so much raw authenticity to this disc…whether it’s Spencer’s chaotic vocals digging deep into the subject of depression, Aaron’s beautiful vocals that sound like fucking harmonies even when there’s only one vocal track, Chris’ innovative keyboards that can go from Skrillex to Beetheoven at the drop of a hat, Grant’s chugging bass lines that practically break the windows of my car, or Tim and James’ relentless guitars that go from mellifluous harmony to relentless assault within the span of a second.

This is CLASSIC Underoath. The darkness of Define the Great Line, the rawness of Lost in the Sound of Separation, the experimental tones of Disambiguation, and the heartfelt honesty of They’re Only Chasing Safety (Oath abandoned the black metal of Cries of the Past days long ago…but, surprisingly, this shit has the energy of that disc as well…fast, double bass, metal riffs, and less focused, more cathartic screams in some places). The best description I can think of for this album is that it’s like They’re Only Chasing Safety, but more mature, and way, way heavier. Digitized intros and bridges, industrial drum beats with just enough metal to assault the ears, beautiful clean vocals, and heavy screams that put all other “screamers” to shame –

this is Underoath.

This is the band that created the metal core genre…perhaps not literally, but definitely in that the style they created is what everyone else followed. So many bands reap the benefits from the ingenuity of Underoath (and I love them, and none are by any means ripoffs, but it’s true…Underoath are like the Beatles of metal core) – Memphis Mayfire, Blessthefall, Escape the Fate (some of it), Alesana, A Skylit Drive, Bring Me the Horizon, and so many more.

What’s crazy though is how DIFFERENT this effort manages to be while still remaining true to the style of what came before it. There are BALLADS now, along with punk rock (In Motion). “No Frame” is the most innovative thing I have ever heard from Underoath…it still sounds like them, but they have literally never written a song like this one before – the only thing I can compare it to is some of the spacey stuff from Thirty Seconds to Mars, but BETTER. And it’s not just this song – so much of this record is experimental, and while we’ve heard similar sounds before, it still pulls off the feeling of being fresh and unique.

I literally find no fault whatsoever with this album. It is perfect from start to finish.

This series of mine is based on another popular work of fiction. Whoever is the first to guess what it’s based on can have two of their blog posts reposted by me. Why not have a potential couple of hundred people check out your posts? Put your answers in the comments, and enjoy!

The saucer whirred past his head like a bullet. It was a symbol for his life, a transitory blur that cut through all the oxygen and carbon dioxide and crashed into a wall of exposed sheet rock. The plate was one, singular…but now, plural, multiple, pieces in the hundreds.

“You stupid bitch!” screamed a terrifying voice, the shrill and commanding voice of the man’s wife. The guy wished that some of the more radical advocates against misogyny could see this woman and learn that men can be victims too. He pondered on this for a moment, as he did with all the subjects in his head every day, using the energy of thought to block out the abuse and the insults. He could even transfix himself onto the mundane, the pointless – descriptions of the broken plate, for instance.

“You aren’t a real man! You can’t even keep the lights on! Or, more importantly, the fucking wi-fi!”

Frisbee from hell, demon dinnerplate…

“Why don’t you fight back? Call me a name, Keith. Shove me a little. Stand up for yourself! You just take it day in and day out, and it makes you weaker and weaker!”

Keith sighed, looked down at the broken plate.

“What?”

That one word was about all he could ever manage.

His wife scowled. “You don’t even hear the world around you. You can’t even see it. That’s why you’re always gonna be in a rut for the rest of your life. You don’t try!”

Keith knew she was correct. He never took any risks in life. His job, a janitorial position at the local supermarket, had been the same for seven years. When he first applied, he and Vanessa had just gotten married. They were fresh out of high school and eager as hell. The world was supposed to be their oyster. But a few months after the honeymoon, Keith reverted back to the person he had been his whole life.

A small, frail, average man with an average face and an average intellect. As an adolescent, he did have some visions of grandeur – but they were impossible things. Things like touring the world as a country musician, things like working as a pediatrician, things related to art and science – but he was too “average”. Too “basic”.

Too “Keith”.

But right now, as he watched Vanessa storm out of the house to go buy some cigarettes, he reflected on the fact that there was now one circumstance in his life that transcended all the dull monotony. It was a secret he had kept from his wife, his boss, and even his parents.

It was a secret called cancer.

Keith went to bed, dreaming of ways he could go out in a blaze of glory. Maybe he could disguise himself and rob the supermarket. Maybe he could go climb a mountain. Maybe he could go write and record an album with his iphone.

“Tomorrow,” he said to himself as he closed his dull eyes. “I’ll do things…tomorrow.”

But tomorrow came and went, as did the next three days. Not that Keith was conscious for any of it. He woke up intermittently to sights of sterile gloves hovering above his face with beautiful, sad looking nurses standing off to the sides. Then, on day three, he awakened to total loneliness. He lay there for a few hours, too weak to press the button to alert those pretty nurses.

As he began to close his eyes once again, perhaps for the final time ever, he saw a dreary man with bifocals and a labcoat come through the door of his hospital room.

“Are you still with us?” Asked the man.

“Not for long,” mouthed Keith inaudibly. “F-f-fading…”

“Nurse!” Exclaimed the doctor, though with a bored, indifferent tone of voice. “Get the crash cart in here! Stat!”

Keith didn’t think that he would fight his demise…he had pretty much given up on living years ago. However, as he heard the rolling wheels of the doctor’s portable machinery, he began to experience two emotions that eclipsed anything he had ever felt before – fear and regret. He was terrified of what would happen when his heart stopped beating. He wondered if he would get what he deserved – absolutely nothing, an endless void the same as the void that was his “life” before birth. Or perhaps hellfire…or even rotting in a grave, alone and conscious. The fear took him over as the regret pulled him into a dizzying naseau. He was a failure…he was nothing…and now, it was too late.

The doctor, the nurses, and the machinery became blurry, faded. But there was something he could see quite clearly indeed, something new, something that hadn’t been there before. It was a pair of jet black crows, reeking of the smell of dead flesh and flying in circles above his head at the ceiling. Or at the…sky? The surface above his head seemed to have dissipated, being replaced by a grey color that seemed to expand without end.

Keith had a heart attack at that moment. The next thing he knew, he was standing up on his own two feet, sans the hospital bed. His hospital gown and his IV bag were still with him, and though both of these were light objects, they now seemed to weigh him down like military gear and an anchor. Only one other thing remained from that hospital bed – the steady, incessant beeping of the8 heartbeat monitor.

Before him was the iron skeleton of a large building – the very hospital where only seconds ago he had been dying in agony. Behind the metal rods and cracked walls were many other buildings, most of them equally decayed, although some large pyre-like towers seemed to be perfectly intact.

Beyond this, in all directions, was a grey sky, a grey earth, and a grey feeling of somber emotion. Ash rained down from the sky, and as Keith peered upwards, he could see that there were faint flickerings of flame high above him in certain places. He got the feeling that they were fires in space…perhaps multiple suns.

His fear and regret had been replaced by sheer awe…but only momentarily. The fear, at least, returned ten fold. This was due to the fact that the earth beneath his feet was littered with polished white bones, some even forming full skeletons. The skulls, somehow, all bore wicked smiles.

Where the Hell was he?

Then…another sound. Thunder? Earthquake? Keith strained his eyes forward as they began to register movement. It was hard to see at first, for the shapes moving fifty yards ahead of him were the same colors as the rest of the environment – black, white, and grey. But as the shapes drew closer, Keith realized with astonishment that they were the source of the sound.

There were at least a hundred “people” walking in an orderly, militant formation. Some were short in stature, while others were enormous. And not all of them were human. Some looked like sapient pigs with hoods over their heads, some looked like wolves, and a few even looked reptilian. What was truly frightening were the skeletons…haunting, looming figures that lifted their shiny black boots meters into the air as they matched forward.

All of these creatures shared one thing…an exotic look of dark beauty that was equal parts joy and tragedy. Above this strange crowd was a gigantic grey blimp with white letters etched upon it, but Keith was unable to read the words due to all the movement.

The sounds accompanying this procession were defeaning. Marching boots synced up to the sound of vicious snare drumming executed with perfect precision. There were also accordions, bells, whistles, and keyboards.

Boom. Boom.

A ridiculously huge bass drum was kicked twice by one of the skeleton men, and all the other instruments ceased simultaneously. The crowd was now less than ten yards away from Keith, and his fear had escalated to the point where he felt he may have another heart attack.

Then, it dawned on him. There would be no more heart attacks…no more heart. No more suffering, no more failure, no more chances of treatment through chemotherapy or other options.

Keith was now very dead, and he felt both terrified and full of peace.

As it turned out, death wasn’t just an event. It was an entity. And Keith would have quite a long time – perhaps even an eternity – to get to know it personally.

She had a GREAT time lol

The sky

Started out murky

Like the water below

Sans the reflections

Slowly,

The pillows of white moisture

Dissipated

To reveal a small, yellow star

(But large from our perspective)

That shined down upon a family

Who did nothing but eat, play, and love

But were renewed by the joy

And glued together

Even closer

And yes, the child did actually have fun.