Monthly Archives: November 2016

Occupational hazard

I have been experiencing numbness in the back of my hand for several weeks now, so I went to the doctor this afternoon/evening to see what it was. I thought it might have been a trapped nerve in my neck, but no. From a writers’ perspective, it was far worse.

Carpal tunnel.

While I state it as an occupational hazard, which it most likely is as I’ve been using computers on a near daily basis since I was 11, it’s also partially genetic. My mother, grandmother and aunt all had it, my mother’s case being so bad she had to undergo surgery while heavily pregnant with my brother due to fears she would drop the baby. I’m glad it was caught before it got that bad (I had my first case of all-hand tingling about two hours before the appointment), but I still have to wear a splint for the next six months or so. It’s taking a bit of getting used to, but most of my typing is done with the fingers so my speed isn’t severely impacted. Am making typos and hitting the caps lock key more than I’d like though and I will have to get used to writing and drawing with it on.

Physical writers’ block- the price I pay to entertain you all 🙂

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On Yoshis

Whilst playing Yoshi’s Woolly World today, I realised that the entire species of Yoshis are referred to in the masculine yet lay eggs.

Here’s my theory as to why: Yoshis reproduce asexually, as seen in the games, making it more than likely that they are unigender and referred to in the masculine for convenience (A little Le Guinish, don’t you think?). They swallow enemies and produce an egg from them. Whether or not these eggs hatch is up for debate because they are more often then not used as projectiles, but it could be the case like with most eggs that many are undeveloped and the Yoshis know this, saving the viable ones. Try playing a Yoshi game knowing that swallowing enemies is like sex to them.

These thoughts happen when you’re trying to take your mind off your favourite football team losing their first in 15 league games. Billy Sharp, I love you but get off penalties now.

 

Snow day by prediction

A watery sun rises upon the wooded road with a biting chill in the air.

Fallen leaves are crushed en masse into sludge by feet of all shapes and sizes.

Windscreens are deiced while the radio blares a snow warning for tonight.

Wet socks and trousers are hung out to dry until the flurries come, their owners thrilled they will miss school.

The next day.

A watery sun shines upon the wooded road with a biting chill in the air.

Fallen leaves are crushed en masse into sludge by feet of all shapes and sizes.

Windscreens are deiced while the DJs talk about the snow that failed to materialise.

Little Johnny and Jenny still won’t get up for school.

 

Hospital

I exist as a Russian doll of pain. A sandwich of anguish with a lager on the side.

If only I hadn’t chanced it and drove back from the pub.

There are seven vertebrae in the neck. All shattered on impact, piercing my spinal cord and leaving me here, a tube down my throat forcing “life” upon me.

If I could rip it out I could. I can’t get used to this life even though I know every little bit of it. I’ve been here long enough. I try to move my hand for the millionth time.

Still nothing.

The only thing I can do is to stare at the ceiling and notice new patterns in the tiling. Combined with the narcotics they jump out at me screaming “YOU EXIST! YOU EXIST!”.

“Oh Lord”, I moan, “take me!”

Through a glass emptying

The glass of water, once half-full, is now almost empty. Parched by the pressures of life, I take another sip.

The paper lies in front of me, not a jot of ink or any other material upon it.

I think.

I look to the glass of water and begin describing my situation. The paper grows darker as I look at the sun setting outside the window.

Sunset on the page.

I take one last sip.

The brainchip

It is my belief that in the future we will all have a tiny microchip embedded in our brains from birth. I visualise it as a universal communication system not unlike today’s smartphones, controllable with the mind.

With the obvious phone feature I see the first iterations of the brainchip supporting only standard voice calls, but the possibility of calling people “telepathically” is not out of the question. Messaging and internet access would also come as standard. Could you imagine searching the internet with your mind, merely thinking “hotels in London” and getting a ton of results instantly? I think that would be pretty mindblowing and I would not put it past Google testing it right now. As for leisure it would be possible to have a pedometer/sleep analyser app not unlike the Fitbit. Music would be pumped into the brain, able to be taken off one’s computer, downloaded or streamed. An entire library spanning decades would sate the rabid gamer, with the best new titles using the medium to their advantage. The most realistic iteration of Pokémon Go ever? I’m in!

Disadvantages would include the obvious “Big Brother” potential, taking the modern concern of internet surveillance one step further by actually reading minds. Governments could use this to arrest, say, murderers as they’re making their plans- or to stamp out wrongthink as it happens. Another issue is that of driving. Pokémon Go has the absolutely annoying “Pokémon Go should not be played while driving” popup for a reason (I don’t even drive, get it sorted Niantic). The former issue in particular concerns me and I feel that if I was to launch it today, where many governments are at their most Nineteen Eighty-Four, I would have to pull it from the market.

I still see myself getting a brainchip before I die though. Just needs a bit of a snappier name…

Why?

Why is Black Friday a thing in the UK?

It is so inextricably tied up with an exclusively American holiday that it makes no sense to me. What should we do? Declare the fourth Saturday in November to be “Bugger Off Puritans” day? I mean, they tried to ban lavish festivities in the vein of Thanksgiving. Makes perfect sense!

And of course the consumerism reaches new levels of insanity every year. Queuing for days outside shops to get the latest Frozen toys before someone snatches them out of your hands (I wonder if they have Thanksgiving dinner in line…). Riots and stabbings over cheap flat-screen TVs. The latter in particular is one of the aspects of American culture we look down on, but are willing to ignore it when we’re involved. Because nobody expects a Briton to be that uncivilised, apparently.

I was in Jack Fultons today and they were advertising Black Friday sales. Black Friday sales! In a frozen food shop!

Please let the madness end.