Loneliness

written in 15 mins for a bet!

I was very lonely. Very lonely and very sad. I had been living for so long I couldn’t remember how old I was. Being a vampire is not all it’s cracked up to be. I had tried so many times to kill myself I couldn’t even remember what pain felt like anymore, as I was so used to it, physically and emotionally. There was so much to live for, everyone had said when I was mortal. But I had done everything I could think of and now nothing gave me any pleasure. Not even feeding.
I tried starving myself to death, but eventually as if on autopilot I would sort of wake up and my hands would be clutching something dead, a rat, bat, human, bird…and the blood would be gone. It was as if some animating spirit had taken hold of my consciousness. So that suicidal trick didn’t work.
Then I think sometime around 300 years old(?) I had tried slashing my wrists and bleeding to death, but each time I did my skin would just heal up almost instantly and I couldn’t keep up the slashing fast enough.
I tried the old lay in the sun trick and burn to death, but apparently I was so old all it did was brown me a nice tan. It hurt sure, but after days and days of trying it, I had to give up , because all I had was a nasty sun burn that never got worse, just never healed properly…
The last time I tried to off myself I tried to drown, but my preternatural lungs just didn’t burn, gasp or really seem to care. So after hours and hours, maybe days, of sitting under the ocean I had to give up on that too.
It was all so depressing.

Everyone I’d ever known was dead, and all the friends I made seemed to be afraid of me. The only cure to my depression I could think of was companionship; someone to while away the hours with, talking to about art and music, and my appreciation for the aesthetics in the world. After you have been alive for millennia, the only thing that has any meaning is your sense of beauty.
I would meet people in bars, clubs, bookshops, cafes, and the like and strike up conversations. But for some reason whenever we got friendly enough to hang out at my place, they always got this horrible wide eyed look of fear on their face. I don’t really see what’s wrong with bat corpses nailed to walls or paintings made of blood, after all it’s very modern.
When I would set my table to dine with my new friends I would make sure to give them the tastiest draught of blood I had stored from my last victim but they for some reason would be horrified. They would start gibbering and call me a madman and scream and scream.

I really don’t like to be left alone these days. I had to bolt the doors every time someone came over so they wouldn’t leave. And then all the screaming. It really hurts my ears. You see my ears are super sensitive being a vampire and all. So after trying everything to make my guests behave I am always forced to rip out their tongues. Then they don’t seem very happy and I feel foolish… They really try to get away then. They claw at the door and try to crash through the window. Sometimes the glass breaking kills them. Sometimes I blank out and they are dead in my arms.
It’s all so depressing.

I don’t ever want my new friends to leave. I’ve devised a way to make sure I’m never lonely again. The bodies start to smell something awful after a while, so I make sure to clean all the organs out and sew them up nice. I put preservatives on the skin. Then my friends and I have tea parties.

I prop up my friends at the table. Sometimes they slump down, and their doll heads hit the table. That makes me sad because then I can’t hear their voices anymore telling me how beautiful and smart I am. I don’t feel very close to my doll friends when they behave in this fashion. I tell them to sit up straight, and keep their eyes open- don’t fall asleep at the dinner table! The blood just drools down their lips when I try to pour them a drink, and sometimes flies come out of their eyes or mouths. I really don’t understand why they don’t swat them away.
Sometimes they don’t talk much either…. dolls can be so rude. It’s gotten to the point where even my new friends make me feel lonely.
I want to be so close to them. I cut open their fluffy skin and put it on myself. I feel so close to humanity now. I love people…. please come visit.

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Depressing Prose Poems #12 and #18

2003:

ITS RAINING AGAIN

Once again it was raining without stop. It had been going on all day. Sound familiar? The rain beat relentlessly on the thin Japanese rooftops. On their shaky foundations they were just begging for an earthquake to come and tear them apart. And if an earthquake didn’t appear there were plenty more tricks in the bag. Maybe if you’re lucky you’ll get a flash food with all this rain.
Small figures huddled under their umbrellas in between train stations, all decked out in their identical school uniforms or business suits. Now and then someone who forgot their umbrella would be weaving in and out of them, running towards their destinations, undeniably drenched regardless of their haste.
I laughed uncontrollably at my bench in the station. Those idiots. Ha ha ha. I couldn’t stop laughing. I tried and tried but something was wrong. I panicked, what had happened to my mind? Huge gut wrenching spasms of laughter shook my whole frame as I rocked back and forth on the seat. By then a large crowd of primary school children had surrounded me, mouths gawping. I felt ashamed and frightened. Why couldn’t I control my own body anymore? Things started to get black on either side of my eyes, like a horse wearing blinders. Maybe I needed more oxygen. Too bad I wasn’t gonna get it. I collapsed forwards still cackling insanely.
To my increasing horror one of my hands reached into my pocket to extract a small box cutter. Where the hell had that come from?! I couldn’t bear to think what was going to happen next, but I didn’t have to because already it was embedded in my left arm. I must have stabbed myself on purpose. I tried to stop but my right arm kept spasmodically jerking the blade into my flesh. There was no pain for some reason. Then I watched in terror as the hand dropped the blade but proceeded to peel the skin from my left arm, starting from an incision above the wrist. The skin was pulled up to the elbows, then the shoulder, then with a horrendous sound of tearing, ripped off from the arm completely. A huge red lump of flesh that was my left arm was revealed and twitched uncontrollably. I noticed a few people around me heaving their breakfast onto the tracks. The blood from my arm made a small river on the pavement, then it steadied into a drip drip drip.
It was only then that I realized my laughing had finally stopped.

ZOMBIE PSYCHOLOGY DEPARTMENT

I thought as much. As much as anyone. Until they ripped my brain from my skull. Those bastards. And they say a university education is to be prized. Ha. The Physics Department said they’d pay me 15 dollars an hour if they could just extract my brain to do tests on it. I said sure thats the best summer job I’ve ever heard of. I don’t even have to do any work. Plus, with my brain gone from my skull I wouldn’t feel anything, i could really and truly vegg for the first time in my life. Fucking ace. Right? Yeah I thought so.
That is until I couldn’t move. Like I was aware I had no brain, so I couldn’t figure out why I could still think and see from the vantage point of my body. And move around too. It must be some sort of backup plan biologically, maybe it was pure soul? Anyway I was confused too. And it only got worse of course. Without a brain my body moved slowly, sluggishly, like a zombie. I think I must have simply become one, because my flesh was starting to rot on the bones. The heart stopped beating but I was still trapped in the flesh.
I would come back each week to get paid and pay my brain a visit. But by then it seemed completely foreign to me. Like some relative in the hospital you used to know. They got Alzheimer’s and completely ceased to be who you knew before. That’s how it was with me and my brain. After a while it even stopped returning my phone calls.
One day I was walking home from the Physics Department when my foot got caught in a sewer grate. No big deal, I thought slowly, I’ll just twist a bit and be on my way. It wasn’t until after I walked a few feet afterwards that I noticed my foot was missing and had sunk to the bottom of the murky stagnant water. Well bullocks. I walked humorously home, limping with one leg longer than the other. Nothing poured out of the wound either that’s the strange part. I guess you’re used to that by now though.
As soon as I got home my softer organs began to decompose faster. I started to panic when I realized soon I’d be unable to move. I had to find some way to get my brain back before it was too late. The Department must have known about this all along. They were probably manufacturing zombies on purpose for some foul plan. I hurried to the phone to have them halt all tests on my brain. As I was dialing my fingers wouldn’t cooperate and I kept hitting my friends number by accident. Over and over. He was quite perturbed. Then my hands just plain fell off and I collapsed dejectedly by the phone.
I know I’m still here where the story left off, but sadly I’m unable to move. I’m just a frozen ghost, body completely gone, with a brain slowly pickling in a jar somewhere and all I can do is nothing.

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Free Writing Exercise #1

Rules: 10 minutes of writing. No premeditation.  Fiction/Prose.  No content editing allowed after finishing, save grammar,spelling or formatting.
Purpose:  Writing practise to improve writing.  Excuse to blog.  Hopefully to entertain.

Image The little man had lived in the oak tree for a long time.  Longer than he could remember.  He didn’t have the lifespan of a human; his was far longer.  Although he looked like a little man, (about a foot tall usually, though he could alter his height) he was actually what you or I would call a pixie, or a faerie.  He was part of that race of beings that used to be called The Gentry, or The Good People.  These beings were called such nice sounding names as a way of placating them.

You see, they had a habit of being quite malevolent, when a human would (usually) unknowingly offend them by disturbing their homes or blocking their byways.  On the other hand, they also had a reputation for fairness, and could reward a mindful human, or even help out someone in need as the mood struck them.
The little man lived in this oak tree that was at least three hundred years old.  It was situated on top of a hill, a very short distance from a larger forest.  When he went out of his home one day, he saw a man by the side of the road about to do some surveying.  He had four short sticks that he was placing in the ground to mark a square, ostensibly to mark a plot for a future home.  This angered the little man very much, as the supposed future site for this home was right in the middle of the path that he and his neighbours had used for centuries to get from their neighbourhood to the next one down the way.  This neighbouring settlement was under a fort, or ring mound.  It was superstitiously avoided by most of the villagers, and for good reason.
The little man ran as fast as he could to the supposed building site once the man had left on his bicycle.  In a huff he kicked out and over 2 of the offending stakes which were in the path of the faery road.  When the human came back the next day he was astonished to see 2 of the stakes not just knocked over, but missing completely, on one side of the square.  This was an ominous portent.

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My First Published Story

If you visit this page below you can see my first published horror story in an online magazine. If you have already read it I apologise but I know a lot of people didn’t get to it. I am a lot better at writing now, this was a little over a year ago already, but please let me know what you think, you can comment here or there!

http://thefringemagazine.blogspot.com/2011/06/fiction-star-stones-by-chris-stibrany.html

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The Roots of Western Fashion Part 2

We should discuss the films in as close to as chronological order as is possible, although they probably overlap in the time line.  First would be “Sweeny Todd,” taking place in the years (roughly) 1849 to 1850, second would be “From Hell” from 1888, and third would be “The Prestige” from roughly 1890 to 1901.

Sweeny Todd mainly wears outfits to this effect:

Then, “From Hell:”

And finally, the Prestige:

So one can see, that despite some very slight differences, like long cravats, or big bow ties, that the styles of that era are essentially the same as today.  The only difference is the occasion in which we wear them.  In other words, they would be viewed as slightly formal for today’s tastes and daily activities, but I am of the mind that we should all be dressing like this all the time because it looks better…

The one thing you notice is the evolution of the style.  The longer, or the more recent that the fashion gets in these films, and thus in the real world on which they are based, the less covered up they become.  This I don’t believe is an accident.

Not only did one have to take care for much colder damper weather in times past, but people had less access to baths and showers.   The cost of a room in an inn would not only get you a nice room and hot meal, but also a much needed bath. Back in the day most people didn’t have baths in their home or the time or money to afford to heat all the water to have one.  So I believe this layering of clothing you see is more based on trying to hide stink and dirt than anything else!

You will see that vests are very common in these shots, and it is funny to note the comeback in certain quarters of the vest.  Often you will see younger men these days wearing vests and sporting caps.

If one goes farther back in time, one finds fashion that is similar to today, but not as similar as what these shots show.  For example in 1780, a mere 40 years from the earliest of these stories, one sees fashions such as this:

So in conclusion, I think it is obvious that for whatever reason, fashion went from the frilly funny breeches and stockings of the above pictures, to a more modern look, almost immediately in terms of fashion. Who knows why, but I am glad it happened!

PS I Would love a Frilly Shirt..but god save those stockings…….

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The Real Roots of Western Fashion

I am going with the, some text is better than no text and  posting what i could come up with. Part two will follow tomorrow!

 

The Real Roots of Western Fashion

This is an odd topic for me to write about, as I don’t really care about clothes, nor do I seem to think twice about what I usually put on.  There are however random times where I feel like looking ‘nice’ and enjoy a more formal look.  This brings me to why I think I enjoy watching some certain types of drama film; because they usually put a lot of thought not just into the acting, but how the actors look and what they are wearing.  Sounds a bit ‘girly’ I will admit, but I am a well-balanced kinda guy. 

                In particular I will discuss three films that popped into my head, while this topic made its way to the forefront of my cranium.  They are, “From Hell,” “The Prestige,” and “Sweeny Todd,” but I am sure you can throw a bunch of other ones in there; those are just what came up for air from the gooey confines of my brain first. 

               For those of you who are not living under cinematic-free rocks, all three films have one major thing in common (No, not Jonny Depp, he’s not in the Prestige). Can anyone guess?  That’s right, they both have clothed people.  Ha, no they both are set in the heyday of the Western historical world, the early to late 1800s, tip toeing into the 20th Century; in other words, the Victorian era.  Why do I first of all bother to call this the heyday, or if you like, the Blueprint of the Western historical world, and not the Classical era for example? 

                For starters, everything we take for granted nowadays, as a concept, as a functional meme, was started in this era.   Telephones, telegraphs, computers, radio, automobiles, magazines, chess clubs, bow ties, and trains; all had their major genesis in this era, and profoundly affected the way we live our lives today. 

This brings me to not just bow ties, but fashion in general.   I argue that the real roots of Western fashion, from a structural and aesthetic stand point, come not from the Classical period, not from the middle ages, nor even from the ‘Greatest Generation,’ but rather from that delightfully forward-moving, fast-changing time post-dating the Civil War, with their own burgeoning starts in the beginning of the Victorian era

 

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The Weird World of Weblogging

They say you should keep a daily blog if you want to be a writer.  They are always right, otherwise they wouldn’t be they.  Especially if they are They.  Them’s the scary right ones.
So here I am writing my first blog post ever in the history of my internet usage.  Sure I had some Korean blogs but those never said anything, nor were they entertaining, they just were an excuse to post photos.  As if there aren’t enough images clamouring for our attention all over the world and all over the world wide web already.

What I haven’t decided yet is if I want my blog to be just nonfictional musings, or if I want to include something along the lines of microfiction as well to keep my skill level increasing (in theory).   I suppose we shall see, especially since I invite YOU to comment what YOU want me to write about!

That is all for now!  Ponder it carefully!

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