All posts by isaackelley

jenny

Jenny in R&D asked me to go with her to the Lunar Fair next weekend.

She said that we’d be going up with some friends. I’m not sure if she’s asking a lot of people, or if this is a date.

Either way, it could be a lot of fun.

rugby

Todd plays rugby. He started practice today. I’m going to see a lot less of him in the weeks to come. I’ll probably be pretty lonely, but I haven’t seen Todd this excited in months.

ruins

My friend Blynne told me about the ruins of Muvidor.

He said that where Astro City is today, there was once an underground city known as Muvidor. They built Astro City right on top of it’s ruins.

He want to explore the ruins. That sounds fun but dangerous. I’m not sure if I want to go.

baseball

Todd and I went to a baseball game. I can’t imagine what the game must have been like in the old days when they played in Earth gravity.

We drank cheap beer, and ate hotdogs, and watched the players break out into fights. It was a great afternoon.

other stuff

Todd apologized for yelling at me yesterday. He said he was mad about other stuff and was taking it out on me.

I’m glad he isn’t mad anymore. Since I came to the moon, he’s been my best friend.

fight

I got into a fight with Todd today. He got really mad at me when I said that I missed being on Earth. He said that if I didn’t want to be here, there were many others who would be glad to take my place.

I told him I liked the moon, but he wasn’t listening.

ruckus

When I first got to the moon, I expected a lot of cowboys riding their giant spiders, causing a ruckus, and picking fights with the moon scientists.
It turns out the moon isn’t like that.

train

Today I had to ride the train to another facility on the dark side of the moon.

I like the train. I like observing the cross section of people that end up being crammed into a single car. For instance, today I sat next to a man who muttered to himself continually in a language I could not identify, and who smelled vaguely like urine. Weirdly, I did enjoy the experience.

amazing

Something amazing happened today. I was walking in the forest today by myself when I saw a moonicorn!

I had always heard that they were mythical, but there it was, drinking from a brook. It let me get close enough to rub its horn, before it galloped off.

I think he liked me because I am a virgin.

news

Here on the moon we get the news from Earth once a month. We get a big bundle of thirty or so newspapers.

For most of us, it is an explosion of news, an information bomb. Not for Todd, though. He paces himself. He just reads one paper a day. He says he’s a month out of synch with Earth.

mom

I got a letter from my mom today.

She said I must hate her her a lot if I felt the need to leave the planet, and that I was wasting my life harvesting moondust.

Being mean is how my mom says “I love you.”

love

Todd has a girlfriend on Earth named Mandy. He wants to propose to her.

I don’t understand why he’s not on Earth if he has love like that. He said he loves mandy but he loves the moon more.

He said she understands.

rufus

The best thing in my life is my cat. His name is Rufus. I brought him with me from Earth.

He loves the moon. He goes exploring all the time. Some times he’ll disappear into the mountains for days on end, but he usually comes back with a present for me.

The moon has some big rodents.

date

Tonight I went on my date with Greeta. We had a nice time. After ice cream, we went to a hover-in movie theater. They were showing Forbidden Planet.

She really seemed to like me, but said we should “stay just friends.” I think she’s worried what people would think about her dating an Earthian.

So it goes.

bad virus

I found out that the robot that went crazy yesterday was named C.H.E.T. They say that he was a good guy who caught a bad virus. They say that what happened wasn’t his fault.
Poor Bill has to call C.H.E.T.’s family on Earth and let them know what happened. I didn’t even know robots had families.

crazy

Work was crazy today! One of the robots went berserk!

It’s eyes kept flashing red, and it kept saying “Kill all humans,” over and over again.

Poor Sarah lost a leg before Bill was able to put it down. I don’t understand why whirring buzzsaw hand modules are standard robot issue.

3 days

I called Greeta. Todd told me not to. He said that everyone knows that you’re supposed to wait three days before calling a girl.

Perhaps I am a desperate fool, but Greeta said she would be glad to get astronaut ice cream with me on Friday. I am excited. I don’t date much.

cute

Todd and I went parasailing today. It was fun. We met a couple of Moonians our age at the beach.

Moonian girls are so cute. I wish Earthian girls were purple.

One of the girls we met gave me her number. Her name is Greeta.

language

I was talking to a Moonian girl named Lindee. She told me that Moonians have no word for love. When I asked her how they mated on the moon she got very confused.

Conversely, Earthians have no word for Frune.

different

It is always nighttime here. Some of the Moonians look down on me, because I am from Earth. Moonian TV is low budget and has much hotter women than Earth TV.

It’s not worse than Earth, exactly, I just miss Earth stuff.

falcon

I was out hiking today when I saw a moon falcon. Al least I think it was a moon falcon. It looked to have a twenty foot wingspan.

I hear that they eat people, but damn, what a sight!

music

The moon is not like Earth. There is strange music all around, drifting across the ether. Strange moonian dirges and sweet uptempo dischord abound.

I would like to meet the sylphs who play these melodies, but I’m not sure where to look for them. I think Todd said they live in a free-music commune somewhere northeast of here.

My R.E.M. tapes go unplayed.

A short scene

Here is the opening scene for a movie I will never finish writing. Is it post-modern genius, or masturbatory nonsense? You be the judge. Hint: It isn’t genius.

A guy (we’ll call him Ron) is chilling behind the counter of a video store, sitting on the back counter, watching a movie.
His buddy (for the sake of argument, Jeremy) come in, joins him behind the counter; clocks in.

Jeremy (looking at the tv): What’s this?
Ron: New Indie. S’about a couple of guys who work at a video store.
Jeremy: Oh. So it’s ripping off clerks.
Ron: No. It’s totally different.
Jeremy: Guy’s working at a video store?
Ron: Yup.
Jeremy: Low budget?
Ron: Very.
Jeremy: And I bet it’s a comedy.
Ron: Yeah, it’s pretty funny.
Jeremy: So how’s it not ripping off clerks?
Ron: Because it’s a totally different movie. (hops off of the counter) Is every movie in space ripping of star wars? Is every movie about gangsters ripping off the godfather? Is every romantic comedy ripping off Fools Rush In?
Jeremy: Fools Rush In?
Ron shrugs.
Ron: My point is that just because two movies bear superficial similarities, doesn’t mean that they can’t have distinct and worthwhile stories.
Jeremy: But clerks didn’t have a worthwhile story. It had a bunch of good dick jokes.
Ron: It had damn good dick jokes. But beneath all the dick jokes, it had a solid story about insecurity and disenfranchisement. That’s what made it a great movie.
Jeremy: You think?
Ron: Totally. Clerks was great because at heart it was this story about Dante being powerless to control his own life.
Jeremy: Ok. So what’s this movie about?
Ron: Uh, a couple of guys who work at a video store. It’s kinda funny.
Quiet pause.
Jeremy: Man, did the end of Chasing Amy suck.
Ron: My god yes.

Cue Opening Credits.

Originally published at The Triangle. You can comment here or there.

Batman has no nipples


When the classic Batman: The Animated Series made it’s way to television in 1992, the Fox network’s standards and practices department apparently forbade nippleage, male or female. Thus, whenever we see Bruce Wayne in training mode sans shirt, he appears as a sad, nippleless freak. How strange and sad that a man mimicking the world’s only flying mammal would lack the very equipment that makes himself mammalian.

A few years later, after his own show had been canceled, Batman made an appearance on Superman: The Animated series. During this crossover, there is a scene where the Dark Knight confronts Shirtless Lex Luthor. Evidently, a few years makes a big difference in terms of what passes for permissible television, because the shirtless Luthor has nipples, bared for the world to see.

I have to believe that at that moment, Batman was jealous of Lex Luthor’s nipples. The exchange between the two enemies was clearly a subtextual battle of nipples. Luthor could sense Batman’s disfigurement, and used it against the Caped Crusader. Shamed, Batman allowed himself to be dominated by his benippled foe.

Later in the episode, Batman removes his shirt, to tend to a wound delivered by one of Luthor’s Evil Robots. The imagery of our hero’s nippleless torso, scarred by the creation of a man possessing something he could clearly never have, moved me in ways I didn’t know I could be moved. Clearly this story was not about two heroes with strikingly different methods who were forced to begrudgingly work together in order to defeat a common enemy. No, this was the story of of a broken man, made to feel less by his insurmountable handicap; forever hoping against hope, that the next enemy beaten would redeem himself, would somehow make him an equal to his nipple-having peers. This is deep, heady stuff for a children’s action cartoon, and I applaud the producers for tackling it.

Originally published at The Triangle. You can comment here or there.

The Well

Somewhere, far from here, there is a well. An elderly man sits beside the well every night, from dusk to dawn.

Every thirty minutes he drops a coin of unfamiliar denomination into the well and he makes a wish. He wishes for the Lord of the Well to remain sleeping, to not rise up and plunge the world into a bloody age of fear and unchecked lusts.
The man is running out of coins.

Originally published at The Triangle. You can comment here or there.

The Interview

Today starts early. I have a job interview.

Waking, showering, leaving the apartment, these are all automatic things, pre-conscious activities.

I order a croissanwich and a coffee. I’m walking to the bus stop, eating my breakfast sandwich. I’m Sandwich Guy. I’m enjoying the sandwich. I’m enjoying being Sandwich Guy.

I wait at the bus stop with the usual sampling of the poor, the elderly, and the mentally unwell. Bus people are not usually happy people.

A man joins us at the stop. He’s muttering loudly. “What the mutherfuckers don’t understand is, what the mutherfuckers don’t understand is I am the black Hitler. I am the black Hitler. I AM the black Hitler. I am. I will unite my brothers. I’ll gladly eat a dog. I will. I always wanted to be a cannibal. Rip into a leg or a throat. I don’t care. I kill ‘em all. I am the black Hitler.”

Crazy people can be scary. Eye contact is avoided.

The bus gets me to my destination well before my interview. I kill time at Borders.

I love books. I love books in quantity. It’s been suggested, fancifully, that books can distort and redefine traditional three dimensional space. I’m perfectly willing to accept that theory.

I look for Terry Pratchett’s The Last Hero and Neil Gaiman’s American Gods. I can’t find them. I find the Graphic Novel/ Trade Paperback section. It has been expanded. What was once half a shelf is now three full shelves. I am elated, but nonetheless do not find anything new or exciting.

I ask the pretty girl at the help desk for the time. I know I recognize her, but I cannot place her. I think she’s changed her hair. I know I should know her, yet she doesn’t give any indication that she recognizes me.

I’m not in the market to buy books, but I’ve still time to kill. I buy a drink from the café. The sign says “No Tipping, Please.” How strange. This runs contrary to my worldview.

I take my drink to a small couch and read a book. Mine, one I brought with me, not one off of the shelf.

Time passes, It is time for the interview. I’ve barely touched my drink. I hide it in the bathroom, behind a potted plant.

The job is Tops Supermarket. The interview takes place upstairs. It’s a tall set of stairs, and as I travel them, I feel a sense of being “behind the scenes.” I am interviewed by Sharon, whom I like instantly. I am hired on the spot and called overqualified. It’s a union job.

I am elated. Two months to the day after being laid off, I am once again drawing an income. The source of damn near all of my stress is silenced.

The weather is fantastic. It is 55 Degrees out. Cool, not cold. Breezy, not windy. The threat of rain not realized. Ideal weather. I’d be willing to call it Platonic weather.

I’m in a huge parking lot, bereft of snow, save for two eight foot mounds of snow and salt. Impulsively, I dash up to the peak of one of these dwarven mountains. Getting down proves a little trickier.

I return to Borders, retrieve my still warm coffee, and once again search for The Last Hero.

I still can’t find it. I inquire at the help desk. Different girl. I don’t recognize this one. Also pretty, however, and much nicer. I’ll take friendliness over familiarity. She assures me that the store has three copies of the book I seek. But ten minutes of patient search on both of our parts fails to back up her claims. So we move on to American Gods, which she also claims the store has, which, again, is less than evident. This time a back room search procures the desired impulsive, celebratory purchase.

As I leave the bookstore, I am happy to own a new book, happy about the weather, and fucking euphoric to be employed.

I perch on a trash can as I wait for the bus. I end up chatting with fellow bus person, Judy. We exchange stories of happiness. She’s happy to be getting off of work. I’m happy to be beginning work. We feed off of each other’s happiness.

Judy and I board the bus. Despite the usual poor spirits of bus people, I love the bus. The seats are comfortable. They’re warm in the winter. The sensation of movement is nice. Best of all is the view of the cityscape out of the big bus windows, while moving at leisurely bus speed.

While on the bus I realize that I don’t have to hurry home to call back various jobs with applications pending.

So I don’t.

Originally published at The Triangle. You can comment here or there.