Grizzly’s Gamble — Part 3 of 8 (Repost)

GrizGamble

Parts:  One — Two — Three — Four — Five — Six — Seven — Eight Smell, Hearing and TasteWe won’t find any advantages here. Pity poor Man, all domesticated and dumbed down so that his wild senses, if ever he had any good ones, are now blunted and tamed.All the other animals, with their razor-sharp sensory gifts beat us all to hell in this area. Even without the ever-present threat of slinking, silent predators, we seem barely well enough equipped to keep from poisoning ourselves … [Read more...]

Grizzly’s Gamble — Part 2 of 8 (Repost)

GrizGamble

Parts:  One — Two — Three — Four — Five — Six — Seven — Eight … Okay, it never happened.I did stand under the streetlight on that lonely highway, right enough. After hours of waiting, I began to study the darkness around me, projecting my fears into it, and as I began to think more and more of things that might lurk out there, I gradually froze into spooked immobility. Though I never saw or heard the merest evidence that anything was out there, I stood locked in place, imagining … [Read more...]

Grizzly’s Gamble — Part 1 of 8 (Repost)

GrizGamble

Parts:  One — Two — Three — Four — Five — Six — Seven — Eight This is The Lie:Back in my hitchhiking adventure days, I stood one night under a streetlight on a deserted highway outside a city in West Texas, waiting for a car to stop and give me a ride. Waiting, actually, even for a car to come along. Eventually there in the dark, I hadn’t seen one for more than an hour.An overcast sky and the dirty air of civilization killed even the stars overhead. Surrounded by an ocean of … [Read more...]

Earth Day 2014: Thoughts Like Falling Leaves

earth_day_2012

[This is a repost of a piece I did several years ago, slightly edited for 2014. This essay is also part of the conceptual force driving my thoughts on the need for Beta Culture.]Leaf OneCon games and sleight-of-hand magic work because, one, we humans only have so much attention to spare at any one moment, and two, they direct that attention deliberately in one direction. If you look at where the finger points, you miss … well, everything else.Like the movie teen backing through a d … [Read more...]

Goodness and Guilt on the Dark Edge of Life

Guilt

I’m thinking about guilt as a driving force of religion.If you treat somebody badly, and they later die before you have a chance to apologize or correct your action, you have no way to make it right with them. If you’re religious, though, you can regain balance both through the ceremonial forgiveness your religion offers and through the “knowledge” that you will either see them again and have the chance to make it right, or that they’re alive-after-death and able to see you, hear you, as you … [Read more...]

Beta Culture: Fresh Crops in Failing Fields

mall 2

Thinking out loud here ...I've written about converting at least one closed church into a Beta Culture Nexus in every large city in America. But I have this slightly different idea for ... well, think about this:Look at this article about abandoned malls across the U.S.: Completely Surreal Photos of America's Abandoned Malls.Say you acquired an abandoned mall at a fire-sale price.You turn most of the shops inside into dwelling units, nice condos, plus maybe a small hotel. You … [Read more...]


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