Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Silly Season


Well, here we are in the "silly season" -- and I just saw on TV a whole long feature on the "news" about UFO's! (Yeah, Roswell 60th anniversary, Buzz Aldrin's orbital sighting, the whole nine yards!)

Meanwhile, I had a run-in with the Medical Establishment. I have a very good doctor in a great group-practice. They have electronic records and state-of-the-art everything. But their front desk that does appointments is of a different order of being.

I had an appointment to have several routine screenings done -- so I finish the first part and go back to the desk, and they say "come back tomorrow".

I just moved heaven and earth to clear 4 hours for their convenience and they want me to come back tomorrow? Like I have nothing to do but dance to their drumbeat?

I said, loudly so everyone in the waiting room could hear, "Maybe I should get another doctor? When I miss an appointment, I have to pay a cash penalty. What do you pay me when YOU miss an appointment?" I said waving the letter they sent me demanding 4 hours of my time as if it were worthless.

I haven't seen Morehouse's film SICKO and I don't intend to. I have enough real-life experiences, thank-you.

Well, I got very loud and assertive -- and guess what? They had people standing around in back ready to run those tests and nobody in line!

So I got all my testing done.

Meanwhile, my husband had a run-in with the post office. One phone call to the Post Master revealed a new Post Man creed. It turns out that they now deliver the mail only if it's convenient for them.

If they're understaffed because of vacation or illness, they just skip some houses. If there's too much mail to sort, they just don't bother to do it all that day. This was said to him to explain why our grocery store flyers don't get delivered when they should even though the stores have mailed them on time. (also another local paper we subscribe to mails the issue -- but the post office can't be bothered to deliver.)

It's summer. Humanity estavates? Silliness erupts and takes over? Brains take a vacation?

I just met a new neighbor around the corner from me. Moved in last week. He was fixing a sprinkler pipe on the outside of his fence. Guess what? The real estate agent who sold him the house neglected to mention HE is responsible for the bushes and watering system between his fence and the sidewalk.

So I walked home thinking, "It's not just me!" It's not that somehow, suddenly I do everything wrong. There's something ELSE going on here.

It's the "Twilight Zone" feeling -- I don't recognize the world I live in.

Then I saw an episode of PAINKILLER JANE. (it's not a bad show -- on Sci Fi channel, and an original of theirs) In this episode a whole small town was under the mind-control of a "neuro" (the psychically talented people Jane's group hunts down and neutralizes by forcibly inserting a computer chip into them). The town was peaceful, happy, non-contentious, 0 crime rate, 0 homeless and so on. The picture perfect existence. (reminded me of a Star Trek episode where the whole planet was "happy" under a computer mind-controller.)

It was Jane's group that had to go to the mat (they actually lost a regular; killed her off!) to restore the town to it's "normal" degree of nastiness!

And I just read an article on how the American public seems finally to be sick of blood-on-the-walls movies!

Hollywood, movie fans shy away from "torture porn"
By Bob Tourtellotte Fri Jul 13, 4:19 PM ET
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Torture, it seems, doesn't pay at movie theater box offices like it used to.

Today, I'm into setting up schedules and meetings at NASFIC.

Jean Lorrah and I are collaborating (yes, again!) on a new story, and we plan to workshop on it at the convention called NasFic (North American Science Fiction Convention) that replaces the World Science Fiction Convention when the Worldcon is elsewhere. This year WorldCon is in Japan (Jean's going and is on the program there). And this year NasFic is in St. Louis -- and on a really odd date (beginning of August instead of Labor Day weekend.)

http://www.nasfic.org/ is the index page for NasFics -- this year's is ARCHON which is also known as TUCKERCON in honor of the famous SF writer and fan Wilson Tucker.

http://www.archonstl.org/31/index2.html is ARCHON

WorldCon index page is

To add to this "silly" mixture, I just finished reading Charlaine Harris's ALL TOGETHER DEAD - where she kills off a whole bunch of vampires and immerses us in vampire politics to the eyebrows. She's got a good series going there -- Sookie Stackhouse is a charming character who doesn't do much of anything except read minds and shrewdly apply what she learns.

In this one she meets a fellow telepath-human and they team up but they don't actually get along too well. She can't read vampire minds, though and that causes some complications.

And now I'm reading an e-book in the HOUSE OF THE ROSE series from awe-struck e-books (http://www.awe-struck.net/) (a historical vampire-rewritten gods-n-goddesses series). I do highly recommend this series -- it's kind of like Dark Soap Opera -- black-suds? All these immortals playing tricks on each other and trying to steal memories.

Here we have two characters, once male-and-female spouses, now reborn as both male, and one is freaked because "he" was a Knight Templar straight-arrow in this life before becoming a vampire.

I saw the new Harry Potter film (Order of the Phoenix). I noted the audience was utterly silent - no laughs, no gasps. The Potter theaters in the complex were not sold out, but TRANSFORMERS was sold out. Potter grossed more than other films that weekend.

Potter has a "parallel world" online -- check out this article:http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070717/tc_nm/arts_potter_internet_dc_1;_ylt=ArIU_GfXZV26BuNeM8AdKTIE1vAI
The mall was stuffed to overflowing and the theater complex was busier than usual on a Sunday afternoon but the Mall was fuller than the theaters. I don't see such crowds except at Christmas Shopping time - no parking places. Big sales, and a little "back to school" new stuff -- but not enough to account for that mob even on a 114 degree heat Sunday.

All this very "silly" mixture will no doubt color and "inform" the Sime~Gen story I'm working on with Jean!

The point of all this? There isn't one! Which is the point. This is the sort of "input" I gulp down all the time, and every once in a while it arranges itself into something that makes sense. This week - I don't see the connecting thread. Maybe you do?

The rest is left as homework for the student! (I do purely hate that phrase in textbooks!)

Jacqueline Lichtenberg

1 comment:

  1. Well, now I know what to do if I ever get pregnant again. Ugh. Whatever happened to human dignity and consideration?