Friday, July 15, 2016

Ruminating on the pack mentality (and wulfs)

     (this rant will piss off every dog lover)    

     So, it has come to this.

     I am finally writing another post, 3 months after.

     So, pack mentality.....

     One day, when thinking about dogs, and how they are "man's best friend", I asked myself the inevitable question: "Or are they?"

     Dogs seem to love you unconditionally, and are willing to do any work for you for a meager price of food and shelter. How noble of them............... or is it?

     Well, ask yourself a question: why do wolves form packs? Is it because they love each other so damn much? Is it because they are oh so nice? Or is it because of much more pragmatic, and, frankly, pathetic reasons?

     I will be frank, and say what I think right here. Wolves are weak cowards. They are weak because they cannot support themselves. They are cowards because they are afraid for their own skin. "Safety in numbers" is a recurring phrase for a reason. Wulfs stick together because it is safe. And because it makes it easier to hunt. Understandable, but not respectable.

     And there is nothing shameful for being weak on your own. However, it is shameful when those are your only reasons for being social. Yeah, I am part of the group, because on my own I cannot accomplish jack shit!

     It would be understandable, and even admirable if wolves formed packs after realizing their individual weakness as hunters and general survivors. It is noble to not be afraid to admit you're weak, and it is a sign of intelligence to decide to stick together with someone else for strength in numbers. But wolves just had to fuck everything up, by throwing in a bonus – the Alpha System.

     For you see, it's not all egalitarianism all the time inside a wulf pack. There is the 1%, those slightly below, and those considered the dredges of society. And everyone in the 99% are constantly scheming to overthrow (see: kill) the alphas. There are constant in-fighting, and frequent changing of the guard. Wulfs pretend to be loyal out of cowardice, but when presented with a chance, dig their teeth in. PRETTY MUCH LIKE PEOPLE, ACTUALLY.

     The pack is comprised of aggressive assholes who treat everyone else like shit and demand the best and the most resources, and submissive cowards below them who are only pretending to agree with the system, to hopefully one day kill the leader and become the 1%. Assholes, and cowards.

     And the dogs are so nice to us because, through their limited intelligence, they believe they are still the same wulfs of 10,000 years ago. Dogs still see the world through the old pack-o-vision, and see their masters as the alphas. Dogs pretend to like us because they are anti-egalitarian by nature. In dogs' world, there are only kings and servants, and you are one or the other. And sadly for them, we, the humans, are way smarter than them, and it is pretty much impossible for them to overthrow us, their two-legged masters. So they are stuck in the endless cycle of servitude.

     Dogs don't love us, they just think we are the alpha wulfs. And that is the sole point of this rant.

     And yes, some dogs seem to be capable of genuine sympathy for their owners. I met some like that.

     They are in the minority, sadly.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Just some food for thought

     You will never be able to write a book and call it "Lolita" because of... you know.

     You will never be able to wear a rainbow shirt in the summer and not have it be mistaken for something homosexual.

     You will never be able to form a musical band and call is The Beatles.

     You will never be able to discover the North Pole for the first time.

     You will never write Star Wars.

     You will never have to worry about sword training, since guns are invented.

     You will never invent the radio.

     You will never paint the Mona Lisa.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Satyrday, a Fable. Thursday, parts 1 & 2.


     Vera didn't sleep much that night. The boy and satyr rested on the sand, surrounded by the large boulders. They lay huddled in their blankets, for night on the Plain was very cold. The fox sat and watched them a long time, not thinking much of anything. The boy appeared dreamless, almost dead, as he lay on his back, the blanket tucked around his chin, his face turned upwards to the blank sky. The satyr rested on his side, his hindquarters bent at the hips and knees, his back to Derin.
     And then the fox's eyes clouded over, she ceased to look at her companions, and she was very far away. She was remembering, sifting though the past as one might walk along the beach, vacantly, stopping now and then to examine something which lies on the sand–a bright washed pebble, a piece of shell, each story distinct from all others, but connected by the great sea which has given it up.
     The longest hours of the night stretched before her. In the shifting winds which swept the plain, small pillars of sand rose up in a whirlwind and disappeared. If the bones of her children beneath her could understand, they would want her to rest. And so she lay beside the satyr and the boy and closed her eyes.

                                                             *                    *                    *

     "What do you have to say to me?" the owl asked, his eyes bright with interest. The ancient raven dropped to earth. The owl towered in front of her, but she didn't seem frightened.
     "I don't know much at this time," the crone said. "Members of the clan are beginning to talk against you, several in particular. I have heard it said your plan is doomed to fail."
     The owl's eyelids lowered as they did when he was thinking. The crone was unaware of the fury behind that thought.
     "There are more than one who question me," he said, his voice muffled, as if it were of no concern to him.
     "Yes, my lord. I've listened to many conversations since last night, and ravens who do not know each other are saying the same things."
     "It will not matter," he said. "I will clamp down so swiftly upon whomever questions me the others will understand they have no choice. And in a few short days nothing anyone could do will make a difference."
     There was silence in the clearing. The ancient raven and the owl stared at each other across the distance between them. "The old are either very foolish or very wise," the owl said. "Which are you?"
     I am not foolish enough to think myself wise," the crone said, and the owl was pleased with her response.
     "You speak well, the owl said. "What did you have in mind?"
     "I ask only that you allow me privately to serve you," she said. "I would act as a spy on your behalf."
     "Go then," the owl said, almost gently. "Bring me the names of those who speak or act against me. And if you should discover a connection between the three strangers I spoke of earlier and a member of the clan, it would be of special interest to me."
     "What will you do about them?" the crone asked.
     "I will deal with them, if they get this far," the owl said fiercely. "But before they arrive, I have ways to make their journey more difficult."
     "If I may be so bold to ask.  .  .  ."
     "You may not."
     In the darkness behind them, the sound of the ravens returning from the southern reach began to build in intensity.
     "They are coming," the crone said. "I have to go." She hesitated. "My lord, when the new kingdom is established, if there should be a post for me, I would humbly accept it, were you to offer."
     "Surely," the owl said, for he had nothing to lose in this. "In the meantime, keep your eyes open. I will await your report."
     The crone lowered her head. "My lord," she said, and flew away.
     The wind carried the sound of beating wings closer and closer to the owl. "It is done," he said. "The moon is in the southern reach." He thied to experience his pleasure, but every time he began to gloat, the knowledge of his betrayal stuck him in his throat. Unbeknownst to him, a raven had been working–slowly, carefully, with great foresight–against him.

                                                       *                       *                       *

Who knew part 2 was short, and part 1 extra short? Not me! For I have only read this book once, and do not have perfect memories of how long each part is.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

I blame the INTERNET (and myself).

     You probably heard a lot of complains, a lot of moans about things getting worse, about everything being shit. You heard complaints about #KidsTheseDays who cannot spend 5 waking minutes without checking their status on a touch phone, and being willfully ignorant about actual knowledge.

     You might even have heard about the entire Western Civilization going to Hell in a regular basket.

     Assuming any of that is true, and things in the western world really ARE getting worse, there are only 3 options.

     –Blame yourself.

     –Blame someone/something else.

     –Do Both.

     I personally do believe that things in the western world have been going downhill, and that people are becoming increasingly apathetic and willfully ignorant. People are refusing to think for themselves, refusing to question things, refusing to DO things; refusing to live as brave independent people, and not cowardly sheep following either RELIGION of SCIENCE to wherever those take us (spoiler: it's destruction).

     I believe that the West have been getting more and more sick for some time. And of the three options listed above, I pick the 3rd, the last one.

     Blaming yourself is always a good option, and is an important step in growing up, and becoming MATURE ADULTS™.

     HOWEVER, blaming yourself BY ITSELF, only leads to self hatred (and suicide). You can only blame yourself for making the wrong action (or not taking actions at all), believing the wrong idea, or allowing someone to keep you down.

     So, for the shit that has been happening to the West, and myself personally, I blame myself for allowing THE INTERNETS to turn me into a slob, eager for instant gratification.

     We have become chronically afraid of missing something important, for missing some hot new content, for falling out of the loop. We are afraid of not being in the know. And that is why we are always online, always checking IF WE MISSED ANYTHING (spoiler: we almost never do).

     We have become spoiled by the promise of instant access and no waiting. We curse our INTERNET connection when downloading our movies and games illegally (because why work for money if that is hard and takes time?) Don't work! Don't wait! Do not do hard things! Do not discipline yourself! DO NOTHING BUT CONSUME EVERYTHING ALL AT ONCE RIGHT NOW!

     Looking at myself, I make myself sick sometimes.

     And I am not the only one.


     P.S. Satyrday updates will return very soon. I promise to not take very long now.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Satyrday, a Fable. Wednesday, parts 15 & 16.

     It was like the night before, but the owl was meaner, clearly more angry. Deirdre looked around her slowly, trying to see if the conversations of the past day had a visible effect upon the other ravens. If there were a change, she couldn't see one. All were silent, obedient, careful to show the owl complete attention and respect. He wasted no time.
     "It has been suggested to me that perhaps the punishment meted out last night was too severe," he said. Deirdre was instantly cautious: had he a plan to win back those who were turning against him? Did he even know of the dissenters? "But first, a more important matter. It seems there may be a further traitor in our midst, one who knows far more than a puny little imp. Which of you flew south beyond the boundaries given by me? Who passed into the southern reach?"
     Deirdre stayed quiet. She had flown there completely by accident and had told no one. She was safe. But still, this line of questioning piqued her interest. Why was the owl protective of the southern reach. There must be some secret, something none of the ravens knew. Since Maxwell's mutilation, they understood the south as a place of exile, although they hadn't an idea of the starfish or ferns.
     No one spoke. The owl's last words had been completely absorbed by the ravens' feathers, and a quiet like softly falling snow lay over the clearing.
     The owl was beside himself. He fumed below them. His great chest heaved. Since the weasels had come with their information, he'd been obsessed with the thought of betrayal. Which of them was it?
     "Listen," he said. "Tonight I was given information that strangers have entered the Outer Lands, are even now at the grave of the ancestors. Does one of you know something about this?"
     Deirdre's heart leapt in her throat. They had crossed the river! They were on the Plain of Desiccation. She could hardly contain herself; she felt like cawing jubilantly, like dancing on her branch. They had made it!
     "I WANT TO KNOW!" the owl thundered. "WHO ARE THESE THREE?"
     Three! Deirdre jumped. Who had they picked up?
     "Begging your pardon, sire," a sycophant murmured from a branch directly over the owl. "But if your worship doesn't know, how would we have the slightest guess?"
     "Shut your mouth, you imbecile. I don't want sugary words. I WANT SOME INFORMATION."
     The raven all but disappeared. Deirdre looked around, but it was clear that no one had a thing to say, out of fear, out of perversity, out of disdain.
     "It doesn't matter to me who they are," the owl said, making every effort to regain his composure. "I know what they look like, and how far they'd come. I will keep careful watch over their progress. I will look forward to their arrival in the forest. I will prepare a welcome they won't forget. Do they think I can be beaten at my own game, and in my own territory?" Deirdre shivered. She's hoped this news would frighten the owl, but fear seemed the farthest thing from his mind.
     "I await them with great anticipation," he said.
     "Now. In the interest of a free and open discussion, let me offer a trade. If whoever flew south without my permission will reveal himself, I will answer questions concerning the justice of my punishment of last night. I am not above reproach. I depend on your good will."
     As before, the ravens stirred on their branches, distrustful. None seemed willing to try him again. Maxwell's example wasn't easily forgotten.
     "None of you knows a thing about this," the owl said, his body beginning to shake with the tension of keeping his anger throttled. "All are completely innocent. No one flew south; no one knows about the strangers to the east." His breathing became harsher, and his talons dug more deeply into the ground.
     "I DON'T BELIEVE IT!" shrieked the owl. "NOT ONE WORD."
     The ravens began murmuring to one another. Never before had the owl appeared like this. Always icily cool, always under control, he had made decrees, handed down orders with total aplomb.
     "SILENCE!" he screamed. He shivered in his feathers. His eyes, blood-red, matched the crimson of his bib. Apoplexy, Deirdre thought with glee. Angina pectoris. But she was wrong. He was not about to die.
     "All right," he said, more under control. "Let's pretend your naïveté is real. But let this be known. I will not stop this inquisition, whether you be here or elsewhere. I will search until I find the traitor. And I will find him. If it means pulling your tongues out one by one, if it entails torturing you in view of the clan, I will discover who stands against me. Nothing can stand against me. You should have realized that years ago.
     "I want the moon moved to the southern reach," he said. "Tonight." The groan that arose from the ravens was unmistakable. "I want her taken from her tree and carried south. My falcons will show you where to put her. She can keep that broken-winged toadstool company. Are there any who question my command?"
     Yes, thought Deirdre, but she made no sound.

                                                *                           *                          *

     Whatever hope the moon felt at the disappearance and reemergence of her sister that afternoon was gone. The warmth she'd felt had long since dissipated. She was wretched, underfed, losing her silver sheen. She was trying to keep in shape, but there was nowhere to exercise. And she was very lonely. It seemed she hadn't spoken to a soul since Deirdre had left her the day before. Was that how long ago it was? In the forest, time was endless.
     From the distance, she heard a faint thunder which grew louder the more intently she listened. She'd heard that noise before. She'd been floating serenely in the sky, bothering no one, when that roar had crept up behind her. There was no mistaking it; the ravens were coming.
     They swooped at her from all directions. The wind made by their wings buffeted her, threw her against the branches of her cage, forced tears from her eyes. They settled around her, on the trees of the forest, on her own oak. And then, like the other day, the owl fell to earth and sat in the clearing below her. He was not friendly; he was not sarcastic. He was enraged.
     "You're being moved," he said unceremoniously. "Now. Tonight. And I don't want to hear a word from you." The ravens moved toward her. "No," he said. "Wait." His voice became more mellifluous. "Before they go to unnecessary trouble, I want to know if you've thought about my proposition."
     "Your proposition," the moon echoed dully.
     "I want to know where your sister sleeps," the owl said. "It is of great interest to me."
     Deirdre thought it very bold of him to ask this in front of the assemblage of ravens, for the owl had been at pains to let them know there was nothing he needed toward the completion of his quest except the moon, safely in his grasp. She was not even sure why he wanted to know there the sun slept, or what he would do with that information.
     The moon wavered in her cage, and Deirdre wondered if she'd been sufficiently worn down to give in, give up, tell the owl what he wanted to know. His tone became more wheedling. "You are beautiful," he said. "I have always admired you. But you grew weak and wan in your cage. Tell me what I want to know, and you will be freed. Together we will rule the night."
     "I cannot tell you," the moon said.
     "She has always been brighter than you, always has thought herself better than you. I give you the opportunity to rule over her, and you turn it down?"
     "She is not brighter than I, and I am far more beautiful."
     "Not any more, my lovely," the owl said cruelly. "You are tarnished and tame. You are like a beautifully groomed animal lost in a briar patch."
     "May you bite off your foul tongue at the root," the moon said. "Your breath infects the air."
     "I don't mean to insult you," the owl said. "I mean only to remind you of all you would give up. And for what? A sister who despises you, uses you, who all along had thought herself superior to you."
     "You miserable bloated bag of feathers," she said. "She may be many things, but she is still my sister."
     "You will suffer far worse where you are going than you have here," the owl said coldly. "Take her away from my sight."
     The falcons held back the branches, and a host of ravens entered the cage with their net. It was the same gauze, and it wrapped around the moon as though it had longed to return. She struggled against it, doing all she could to make herself more difficult to manage, but it was no use. She was lifted from the cage by the ravens, who now flocked through the opening made by the falcons. They struggled with their burden, for the moon was indeed heavy, and several times she felt herself being lowered, as though they couldn't garner the strength to get her free. But more and more ravens flew to the oak's top, tangled their talons in the net, and slowly she was lifted.
     She swung loose above the trees in a hammock of gauze, and the rolling motion as the ravens ascended and headed south sickened her. But she was free of her cage. She took deep breaths, shedding her pale light around her. It illuminated the tops of the Deadwood Forest, those broken branches which now, instead of holding her, seemed to be reaching up in farewell. It reflected off the ravens' underbellies, a sea of feathers.
     The journey lasted some time. She was quiet, listening to the harsh rasp of wind on the ravens' throats. They were struggling, tiring. Perhaps they'd drop her and she would float free, up through the clouds, away from all this. But she knew there were too many of them for that to happen, and replacements who flew behind, should and of those carrying her tire too much.
     They lowered her carefully at the appointed time, their wings outspread and floating on the wind. She felt herself dropping, and another tree surrounded her. The falcons strained against the branches, holding them, and finally the last raven released the gauze. It was whipped from under her, and she was alone again, listening to the faint flapping as the ravens headed north.
     She closed her eyes and listened to her heart. She was breathing shallowly now and her light was dim. Above the sound of her breathing, above the beating of her heart, she heard another noise like the ocean, a faint rising and falling of breath, waves beating themselves against a foreign shore.
     Miles to the north, the owl sat in the clearing, alone but for one raven who had left the entourage to return early. It was the withered crone, her black feathers rumpled and dusty. She was breathless, and she thought her old heart would give out on her before she could say what she'd come to say.
     "My lord," she ventured.
     The owl looked up at her as she hovered in the air inches from his beak. One snap would cut her in half. "Ancient one," he said. "I have never trusted the very old or the very young."
     "I would speak with you," she said. "I have some information you will want."

                                                *                            *                            *

     If you made it this far, thanks for your patience. If you just stumbled upon this page, please find the first chapter and read form the beginning! It won't be hard to find.