Posted Jun 15, 2005
Goth baseball season is again upon us. I can tell by the tunes the birds are singing, and the way the newspaper reports bizarre trivialities.
Goths love baseball, but they hate the American kind. Americans care who wins. How silly. The point of baseball, the Goths tell me, is that it creates arcane rules which allow for emergent properties . The goal of the game can shift from one aspect of play to the next: most home runs, most bases stolen, most pitchers turned into frogs by the opponent's wizards , that sort of thing.
They say it has something to do with the lower sephiroth of the kabbalah, whatever that means.
The last Goth baseball game I attended was between the Bangenheim Bullfinches and the Tiegelstein Tufted Titmice.
There was the standard opening ceremony. After the singing of the National Theme Song, 'Somewhere Over the Rainbow' , and the water-bucket revival of players overcome by patriotic emotion, there was the traditional release of the National Bird, the Bluebird of Happiness. Auspiciously, the Bluebird flew over (and fertilised) the Visitors' dugout, before settling on the shoulder of Gotha's ruler, King Terry, of whom the less said, the better . Then play could begin .
The first inning was as usual played on donkeys . Two bales of hay and three balls were eaten, a bystander was kicked in an unfortunate place, but nobody scored.
In the second inning, the Tufted Titmice pitcher beaned every single batter but the last three. The Bullfinches retaliated by pitching nothing but balls, until the Titmice batters swung wildly enough to strike out. The score was 3-3.
In the third inning, they brought out the wizards as designated hitters. Result: balls turned into butterflies , invoking the 'pop fly' rule, gloves turned into tennis rackets , and bats turned into, well, bats . Nobody scored, and the game had to be halted for two hours until fresh equipment could be fetched.
In the fourth inning, everybody had to run clockwise around the bases, backwards. Score: 6-4, Bullfinches .
The fifth inning was relatively normal, except that the pitchers kept giving the batters the bird , which in Gotha is a high honour . Score: 15-4, Bullfinches.
During the sixth inning, the Tufted Titmice stole three bases (and wouldn't give them back), the Bullfinch shortstop stole the scene (I think it was from 'Hamlet' ), and the Bluebird of Happiness stole the last ball . More equipment was sent for. Score: still 15-4, Bullfinches.
The seventh inning was marred by lengthy arguments over the rules. Finally, the two managers compared notes, and found they were using different rule books . Arbitration was sought from King Terry ; he declared the Revised Standard Version of the rule book to be anathema, and decreed that henceforth only the Authorised, or King Odoacer, Version would be used . According to this version, runners got triple points on Thursdays. Since it was a Thursday, the score at the end of the seventh inning was 36-28, still in favour of the Bullfinches.
Then there was the seventh inning stretch, involving a spirited popcorn-ball fight , release of the sacred mylar balloons , and the singing of 'Take Me Out to the Ballgame' in Gothic (text not available as yet).
Unfortunately, at this point the game was called because of an unseasonable volcano, and, in accordance with the rules of the Authorised Version of the rule book, the visiting Tufted Titmice were declared the winners .
Goth baseball is not for the faint-hearted. But, as they say, 'Slahsmanna iup!' ('Batter up')
Where is Gotha?
Posted Jun 13, 2005
Not mentioning the town in Germany, with its lovely old church and left-over Zeppelin port.
The Goths don't live on earth. They used to, but they got squeezed off by greedy people: the Romans, Attila the Hun. So they went elsewhere. It's close, though.
Sometimes, when they've been very active, people notice. And they think they know where the Goths live. They call these places special.
Boeotia, Abdera, Nazareth, Gotham: the homes of holy fools.
Abdera has the nicest beach I know of.
If you really want to meet one, try this: just after sunset, make yourself comfortable. Get into a relaxed state. Stare meaningfully into a glass of water. Unfocus your eyes, and clear your mind.
Don't expect portentious wisdom. But if you find that you've fallen into a light trance, and then come to with a start, and unexpectedly find yourself laughing, you have made contact.
The Goth touch can be light, or heavy. It can last a moment, or a lifetime. Depends on what you want.
Just past the rainbow.
Cyberneticists are bad for humans and other living things
Posted Jun 9, 2005
A dear friend of mine once said: When nothing is sacred, then everything is holy.
Maybe that's why I'm so fond of parody.
Coffee machines are a Good Thing, but why should they talk? Will they ever invent the Anti-Joke?
Maybe they are an anti-joke.
COMMANDER SHELBY'S COFFEE-MACHINE SONG
Tune: Sweet Betsy from Pike
As we roam the star systems for fame and for plunder,
There's many a techno-co-logical wonder
That aids us in our travels among planets green,
But the greatest of all is the coffee machine.
It spits and it gurgles, and it gurgles and spits,
It sighs and it groans, drives you out of your wits
By asking politely, how's your head today?
Sure, that mean Old Janx Spirit will put you away.
We fought in the Clone Wars with the greatest aplomb,
With lasers and phasers and atomic bomb,
But all that is nothing to the battle we face
Against cyberservants who don't know their place. CHORUS
We all know we live in a world full of light,
Where everything's perfect: Oh Judas, not quite.
We've conquered the cosmos with our weapons keen,
But we can't do a thing with the coffee machine! CHORUS
May all your coffee be Special Blend, with Irish Cream in it, and served by a friendy humanoid,
1 + (5 x 9) + 0 + (7 - 8)4 = 42?
Posted Jun 8, 2005
Somebody check my math, please. I'm terrible at it.
I understand abstract scientific concepts, but I do it by apperception, not logic. Logic is not a Gheorgheni thing.
Astral engineering is done by visualisation, mood control, and incredibly large quantities of coffee and sparkling mineral water.
I can't describe quantum physics, I can only experience it.
I know why the caged neutron sings.
The Great Books Mother Goose
Posted Jun 5, 2005
In honour of all those studying for exams, the following:
SOCRATES, gadfly tease,
Drove Athenians to think;
Fatal hemlock had to drink.
OEDIPUS, what a jinx,
Solved the riddle of the Sphinx.
He kept looking, saw the light,
Learned the truth - but lost his sight.
ARISTOTLE had a plan
For the happiness of man:
Said, the mean is the direction,
When you practise for perfection.
Most of us would like to throttle
That old windbag Aristotle.
Fell a-lustin' -
He took heed.
He was freed.
When holy ST BENEDICT made up his rule,
He sent all the monks to a moderate school:
'Be good to each other, and love God, and pray,
And I'll see you all up in Heaven one day.'
SUR GAWAIN was bold.
The story is old.
If Sir Gawain's will had been stronger,
The story would have been even longer.
Foxy statesman, MACHIAVELLI
Pounded scruples into jelly.
Said: If power you would seek,
Seize the day, and don't be meek.
I am sure that Niccolo
Went where all true villains go.
Got MACBETH in a heap of trouble.
Murdered Duncan in his bed;
The MacDuff cut off his head.
FRANCIS BACON, in defiance,
Claimed the future lay in science.
Found among Bensalem's sages
Wisdom for the coming ages.
Switzerland's JEAN-JACQUES ROUSSEAU
Said, Early Man was good, you know;
Life is eating, drinking, sex:
Modern folks are too complex.
Wordy WORDSWORTH worshipped nature
In poetic nomenclature.
In the stones of Tintern Abbey
Found a sermon - not too shabby.
WILLIAM BLAKE, who made thee?
Dost thou know who made thee?
Gave thee pen, and made thee tell
Of the marriage of Heaven and Hell?
William Blake, you're so artistic
For a crazy English mystic.
CONRAD was a gloomy Pole,
Heart of Darkenss took its toll;
Marlowe cried: Full steam ahead!
The message? Mistah Kurtz - he dead.
With a sense of deja vu,
We approach ALBERT CAMUS.
Life is meaningless, we fear:
Tell me, now you've had a look
Into many a GREAT BOOK,
Full of wisdom, wit, and lore:
Are you wiser than before?