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Wednesday, February 26, 2003

For our final writer's group assignment we were to write about a time that we made a choice in our life, but from the alternate perspective of the course we did not take.

I sat down to write a tale of a literal road which I did not take, however, my first thoughts were of an abstract concept related to our ability to freely choose the course of our lives. Unfortunately these thoughts soon become overwhelming.

Therefore, instead of my intended story I now present the following Strange Tale™ of Fate, Destiny and a Boy with a (ok, many strange) Dream(s)

Among certain folks in our world there is a widespread philosophical belief known as "predetermination". The main tenant of which being that the course of our lives has been set before us. Served on a silver platter by a very disgruntled waiter, who, despite our protests of not having ordered the meal, not only insists on serving us. But, physically takes what is oft a rather unpalatable feast and shoves it down our throats with absolutely no concern as to our general well being or happiness.

We become not but passengers caught on the railroad tracks of destiny. Helpless to control events as they unfold all around us like a sadistic and lifelong moving picture show.

As evidenced by my rather dramatic description, this belief is not my own. This is mostly due to the fact that I simply could not stand the thought of my life being predetermined for me. And especially by the will of some unseen bloke who somehow has determined which events are supposedly in my best interest.

Yes, life is harder when we except responsibility for our own actions, however I have never been the sort to follow the easy path.

Anyhow, I apologize for my verbose preamble. I felt it necessary to preface the very need for this tale, as any good investigator who is presenting evidence should first have had cause for collecting such evidence.

This is the story of my exploration into the B-side of inevitability, my discovery of free will…

…this is the story of…

"The Path Less Taken"


"What Else Was I Going to do When I Was Bored on a Tuesday Night in Late February?"

I had postulated for quite some time that if our exact course through life has been decided for us, then there must be a great deal of the general universe which is well aware that it may not be needed for goodly stretches of time.

For example, there are bound to be certain hallways, which do not expect our passage, certain rooms who are not expecting our presence, objects that know they may be unneeded for several years at a go and so on.

I decided that I wished to explore such places, discover lost treasures and learn the secrets of just what it is they’re up to when we’re not around. So overwhelming was the desire to find out what such places were up to whilst not expecting me that it overrode the simple logic of the situation. I mean, at first glance, this would all seem a rather futile effort and I must admit that my first attempts met with rather disappointing results.

For example, one evening I had decided that it was time to brush my teeth before bed. I turned off my ever-faithful computer and the single incandescent bulb which illuminated my room during working hours. Getting up from my ancient metal desk I headed down the eastern hallway that led to the upstairs bathroom. I was fully intent on following this predetermined path of toothbrushing, however, unbeknownst to myself, I had, in fact, a completely alternate agenda.

Instead of making that all too familiar left turn towards the bathroom, I instead sprinted further down the hall and, upon reaching the end, flung open the door which was to be found there!
Intensely focused on at last discovering the other side fate I leapt with blind fury into the dark room, my large, purple terry bathrobe flowing behind me as I landed on the carpeted floor with a triumphant battlecry.

However, and utterly contrary to the shocked screams of the room’s occupant, it seems that destiny had indeed expected me to enter my father’s bedroom that night. Wisely, I decided that 3am was not the time to enter into a heated philosophical pontification with my darling daddio, so I scampered from the room in an impressive flurry of purple terry cloth.

I hid beneath the dining room table, which was also expecting me it seems, as my father, intent on having that philosophical discussion after all, stormed through the house before once again retiring to his bedchamber. This gave me a goodly amount of time to ponder this issue more thoroughly. Obviously, in order to trick fate, I was going to have to be even more clever than simply hiding things from myself.

A serious plan was in order. Spending the next few weeks to carefully research the nature of destiny through the application of controlled experiments gave me a lot of time under the dining room table to devise, diagram and refine my strategy.

Honestly, if we are railroaded into a certain path, how does one jump the tracks that we are so tightly bound to? Perhaps some grand event was required, a gesture of respect to the hand of fate. Or, perhaps it was a matter of subtle reasoning. Could it be that just the act of dissecting the concept with a razor-sharp mind was enough to slip the constraints which shackled us?

Unfortunately, neither my wit nor patience was up to the task presented by the approach of sheer reasoning, I therefore opted in favour of a plan which I dubbed “El Grande Gesture” or “E.G.G.”.

The EGG plan was quite straightforward, involving the construction and application of a dynamic destiny-refocusing device or “D.D.r.D.”.

Fruition for the EGG plan was finally assured the night one of my smaller research experiments went awry and I discovered that my father was finally smart enough to install a rather sturdy lock on his bedroom door.

My inability to breach his newly installed defences filled me with a new-found vigour as I slipped from the house that night.

Installation of the dynamic destiny-refocusing device between the maple trees that adorn my front lawn was uneventful. Construction of the DDrD had progressed relatively smoothly and had actually taken fewer bungie cords than initial estimates had indicated. I knew all was ready during the harmonic-tuning phase of the installation as the DDrD responded to my calibrations with a lovely hum that insured that the proper tension had been reached.

The next stage of EGG plan was to don a plethora of safety equipment, safety first I always say. With great care I put on the knee protectors my father used when he re-tiled the kitchen, half a roll of bubble wrap around my chest, held in place by the belt of my still-favoured purple terry robe, oven mitts and of course a jock strap…. ….wrapped around each elbow. The piesta resistance was a vintage DubyaDubyaTwo aviator’s helmet, complete with goggles, which had once proudly adorned my greatgrandpappy’s crown as he shot Nazi’s from the sky.

Operation of the DDrD involved the simple application of predetermined kinetic energies. Which, in turn, would be refocused in such a way as to completely trick fate. Thusly allowing me to finally explore the theorized upon realms which I was so intent on discovering.

My earlier calculations suggested that 50 feet of runway should be sufficient for building up the head of steam required to finally escape the firm grasp of fate’s hand. My starting block was therefore across the street from my house, which at the time seemed to pose little problem, especially considering the time of year and the early nature of the hour which I chose for my experiment.

Pulling the somewhat blurry goggles over my eyes and taking a few moments to straighten my armour, I kicked my feet into the gravely dirt of my neighbour’s driveway, a silent countdown running through my head… “Five, Three, you missed something, oh ya, Six, where was I? Oh ya, Three, Two, ZZZZIIIIYYYYEEEE!!!”

Heart pounding in my ears, the perfectly planned kinetic energy build-up began, the trajectory was bulls-eye accurate as the tight outline of the DDrD grew closer. It was then that I noted an oddly bright light along the edges of my peripheral vision to the west. The designers of my fashionable eye-protection had been somewhat lacking in, and you must forgive the pun, vision. At least with regards to the concept of clarity related to the proper functionality of peripheral perception in seems.

I had totally failed to see the unidentifiable vehicle which was now speeding towards me. The mannerism of this vehicle suggested that perhaps destiny had informed it a tad late of the specific predetermined time when it was required to occupy the same physical space as yours truly.

Being completely unwilling to part with one’s plans has the amazing ability of granting a very specific sort of instantaneous insight, which could perhaps even be dubbed precognition. However, my thoughts and experiments into the realm of precognition are a completely different tale.

The moment I veered away from said speeding vehicle was one of these times when this instantaneous insight served me well, at least in the short run. It was quite obvious that the laws of fate were fading around me as the vehicle’s horn jeered in protest at being cheated of its destiny.

The DDrD was now approaching the moment of its final test, the instant when it would prove not only it’s physical ability to stretch the laws of cause and effect, but also it’s metaphoric ability to redirect everything thrown against it in “EL GRANDE GESTURE”.

There was, however, one small complication, without which, I would not be speaking with you now. My seemly insignificant near miss with the chariot of fate had created a slightly new trajectory during my approach to the DDrD. This had the deleterious effect of placing me more than a wee bit off center as my initial contact with the DDrD began.

I am slightly ashamed to admit that I had not run over such a possibility during the initial calculation phase of my planning. Due to the lack of alternate scenario foresight, what happened next came as a complete surprise to me. The DDrD came loose from the eastern most Maple tree during the apex of the transferral of my kinetic energies to said DDrD.

Now, my recollection of the next few moments is somewhat fuzzy, however I do recall being flung in a most unusual manner, akin to an attempt I once made to run sideways on a conveyor belt. However, I would calculate the effect as being approximately twenty-three point 7 times more intense than that previous experiment.

Slightly dazed I awoke, the majority of my armour missing as I regained my feet. Still partially off-balance I wandered towards the front door of my house. Apparently the entry foyer of my house was completely unexpectant of my presence, as my egress from the front yard was accompanied by perhaps one of the finest light shows I have ever had the pleasure of witnessing in my short life.

Elation swelled in my body as I realized the significance of my discovery! Finally, I was on the other side of predetermination! The realm where all places and things wait until they are once again called upon by destiny.

The breadth of the universe that lay before me caused my mind to reel so completely that I was utterly unprepared for the vision which turned to welcome my arrival.

The most stunning vision I have ever had the pleasure of laying my eyes upon smirked slightly as her gaze fell upon me! Befitting her role as the embodiment of discord and chaos, her visage never took on the same guise for more than the briefest moments.

Her voice too was impossible to define as it randomly filtered through every tonal and vocal range imaginable as she spoke the words which, in the end, are the point of this tale and the reason for my firm belief if free will:

“You were correct my son, there is no predetermination in your reality. However this place is not for you, go now...”

Blinded by the righteous nature of her words my eyes blinked shut for nary a moment as I attempted to whisper a word of thanks to Lady Eris. When I was finally able to open my eyes again, I found myself here, clad in the remnants of my robe, suspended from this tree via the bungie remnants of my DDrD.

So anyhow officer… how long do you think it will be before they cut me down? I’m getting a little chilly…

posted by Kusari 12:20 PM

Sunday, February 23, 2003

The Great Sky Jester deems that it is now time to share some funny sites!

I've always wanted my very own rubber ducky! Now, thanks to this amazing site! I now have more kinds of rubber ducky to choose from than I can possibly imagine! The Dead Duck is pretty cool! But so is the Polkadot Devil Duckie! I just can't decide! Arrrrgh!

Have you ever wanted to fold your own Origami Pikachu or Balrog??? Well then here's the site for you!

I don't know about you! But I've always, always, always wanted to be immortal! And now I finally have my chance! Now, I could keep this secret to myself, however, I am in the mood to share my amazing discovery with the world, so check out: Alex Chiu's Immortality Device!. Who knew it could be so simple?! Heck! There are even diagrams for building your own!

Here's a site which is guaranteed to knock your socks right off!! A hilarious collection of Japanese products, signs, instructions and more which are sometimes utterly baffling and always funny! This site is also shows a very interesting contrast between North American consumers (Low Fat! No Calories! Yummy Styrofoam!) and Asian Consumers (Your Ancestors will Rejoice at your new found Harmony).

Favourite Products include "Chocolate Collon" and "Woody Home".

For an absolute whale of a time check out Crazy Asian Drinks! A site that will leave you on the floor, rolling around and holding your stomach with heavy belly laughs. (Although, the earlier reviews with Pikachu are still my favs! PIKAGOO! PIKASPEW!)

In a similar vein is, another hoot of a website. It's currently in flux, but be sure to check out the old version of the site for a sample of the bad goodness! (Happy Plums my ass! lol)

Make fun of people with Mullets!

Collect Camel Toes!

Get a very sexy and utilitarian kilt!

See Weebl (sometimes Weebl's friend Bob) do... ummmm... things!! Ya! That's the ticket!

Laughing all the way home… Until next time boyz and gurlz!

posted by Kusari 12:32 AM

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