Alternative history: Keeve Process

KEEVE PROCESS
mrblo

We owe the illegal Keeve Process to neuropsychopharmacological research conducted in the 2010s. The Keeve Process fuses the hemispheres of the brain by filling the fissure between them with a haphazard network of artificial fibres and drug-producing glands. After recovering, many patients experience improved concentration and greater conscious control over their mental processes. However, others suffer irreparable damage to the prefrontal cortex that can cause a variety of neuropsychological problems.

In 2036, a Eurasian research committee undertook an extensive study of fourteen patients who underwent the Keeve Process between 2020 and 2025. They found that eleven now appeared to suffer from degrees of schizophrenic ideation: Continue reading

The Fall of Arthur

THE FALL OF ARTHURfallarth
J. R. R. and Christopher Tolkien
HarperCollins, May 2013

Guinevere will always remain the Yoko Ono of Arthurian romance. For men of a certain bent, she summons to mind the new wife or girlfriend of their old friend, who now threatens to intrude upon the Round Table of their male camaraderie. What if she doesn’t just stay at home and darn his socks? What if she wants us to see her as a person, not just our friend’s possession? Already, she’s changed him. Remember the good old days when he slapped you on the back and denounced all women as whores?

Tolkien’s The Fall of Arthur continues the ungenerous tradition of presenting Guinevere as a figure of treacherousness, not just discord. On those occasions where she rises from the role of disputed possession, she becomes a manipulative temptress towing men to their deaths. From her first entrance, we hear of her remorselessness, Continue reading

Closing Statement in the Court Martial of Sergent Kist

CLOSING STATEMENT IN THE COURT MARTIAL OF SERGENT KIST
mrblo

Beware,
If you from here must damn what I did there,
You too would’ve faltered on that tower,
Beneath the wreath of that thousand-yard stare.
Will you measure the sins of one hour
Against ten years of duty served with care?
A day’s courage to a second’s error
One minute foul against four fortnights fair

Have care
Then, my judges, when you pass your sentence,
If you would light the truth ‘neath this affair,
That you judge the crimes not their repentance.
Do you think fear drove me away from there?
Rendered still a loyalty whose currents
Carried my soul through ten years of warfare?
Then you condense my disobedience. Continue reading

Alternative history: Ilia Tare

ILIA TARE
mrblo

Born in Golem, Albania in 1961, Tare studied astrophysics under the tutelage of Adam Kola at the University of Tirana.

In 1981, using the pseudonym ‘Orion Mala’, he began writing articles for the underground periodical Lëndë e Djegshme in which he argued that Leninism had debased the original aims of socialism. Continue reading

Omelet

OMELET
mrblo

I think you can make an omelet in the dryer. Crack the eggs into a zip-lock bag, wrap it in a pair of pants and run them through on high for an hour. I know it will work.

Colin would never let me try it when we lived together. He acknowledged it might work, but felt that the reward couldn’t justify the risk. Continue reading

Visible details of the scene

VISIBLE DETAILS OF THE SCENE
mrblo

When I reached the supermarket, an electrical pole stood burning near the parking lot. Firemen shot water at it while one of them gabbed with a policeman. I asked a security guard, whom I found watching, what had happened and he just reported the visible details of the scene.

“That electrical pole has caught fire,” he said, “Firemen have started spraying water on to it. A policeman stands next to them.” Continue reading

Wheelie bins

WHEELIE BINS
mrblo

In my area, the city council empties the rubbish bins once a week. We wheel them out to the road; the City of Monash empties them; we wheel them back to our houses and spend the rest of the week filling them up with hotdog packets. Then we repeat the cycle.

My neighbors paint their apartment numbers on their bins. That way they can make sure that each week they wheel out the same bin that they wheeled out the previous week. They have a history with their rubbish bin. Continue reading

Domain Tunnel

DOMAIN TUNNEL
mrblo

When the Domain Tunnel opened in 2000, the state government set a temporary sixty kilometre an hour speed limit. Their caution seems prudent. Who knows how much the construction firm might’ve abridged basic safety to cut costs. But the explanation they proffered insulted all of us. They explained that Victorian motorists needed time to get used to driving through a tunnel. As if they thought that, finding no sky above our heads, we might flip out and slam on the brakes in traffic.

For weeks, they had run an advertising campaign instructing us just to drive like normal in the tunnel. Don’t get out of your car or try to turn around. Continue reading

Alternative history: Strangelove, 1962

Strangelove, 1962mrblo

1945: During post-war efforts to bring scientists who worked for the Third Reich into the United States, the US War Department obeys President Truman’s order to exclude scientists who supported Nazism, rather than rewriting candidates’ files to conceal the evidence. The United States and the Soviet Union divide the German scientists with more equality. In particular, the Soviet Union acquires Arthur Rudolf, former operations director of the Mittelwerk factory at the Mittelbau-Dora concentration camps.

 

January, 1946: Rather than anticipating a post-war crisis of overproduction in the USA, Soviet economists predict that the United States will try to avoid the crisis by maintaining its wartime military industry and trying to open the new Europe and Asia to free trade. Based on their advice, Stalin now views the United States as the chief threat to the Soviet Union, instead of the reemergence of Germany or Japan. Continue reading

Ethnographic exercise

mrbThe Brotherhood of Trustees owes its present influence to an archaic custom barring the aristocracy from direct involvement in commerce. The custom holds that commerce can never furnish the form of unassailable security it sees as the precondition for noble disinterestedness. Moreover, by their nature, commercial transactions would often compel the nobleman to deal with commoners as equals. The noble must regard such concourse as demeaning, both to himself in person and to the institution of nobility as a whole[1]. Continue reading

Angel [pt.1]

ANGEL PICTUREweierstrassangel

This selcouth angel dwells in the Weierstrass function. Each dot’s colour occupies a position between zero and nine along a continuum of shades. The distance between each dot and an origin point near the centre of the painting depends on two characteristics: one, the position of the dot’s colour in the continuum; two, the angle of the dot within the painting in a system of polar coordinates centred on that origin. For each dot, the distance equals the infinite sum of three fifths to the power of the index of summation times the cosine of: the dot’s angle times pi times: the position of the dot’s colour in the continuum to the power of the index of summation. Continue reading

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