Sunday, 4 December 2011

Unexpected Voyage

   Hello, loyal followers! I am so sorry for my absence. Some of you might have enjoyed this hiatus in hilarity, and to you I graciously demure, expressing my wish that you enjoyed the respite. To those who found it in their hearts to miss me, I offer my sincerest apologies! It appears that my hyperwave transmissions did not reach my home network, and so you have been subjected to several months of silence.

   Now, bear with me please because this is a rather long story! When I last posted, I was trying to solve the riddle of the stag beetle bug and the door in the tree. The day after posting that story, I locked myself in my lab for a few hours and ended up with a pretty good spatial stability meter. Shinning up the tree again, I positioned it carefully on a branch not far from where the doorway was outlined. After a couple of days I had some very interesting readings! There was clearly an intermittent controlled standing wave being generated at that precise location from somewhere above me - probably from a geostationary orbit.

   OK, so the next decision wasn't an easy one! I had no way of penetrating whatever cloaking device was in use: I had already tried that. My only option was to try to slip through the anomaly when it was open. That night I loaded up with some useful gear, backed up my self-pattern via hyperwave just in case, and climbed the tree to wait.

   As soon as the readouts on my detector began to flicker, I got ready. A faint glowing outline grew brighter over a few seconds, and suddenly the door vanished and the beetle-bug flew out. Without hesitation, I dived through.

   Wormhole travel becomes boring when you've done it a few times. The only really exciting part is the discontinuity between the origin and destination - and once you begin to expect that, it's no surprise. Unfortunately, the rather pretty tunnel of special effects used in so many science fiction films is just a dream: the journey is effectively instantaneous and so is never experienced, as such.
   In the case of this particular discontinuity I was expecting almost anything. For all I knew, I could have ended up in space without protection. However, my hunch turned out to be right. The bright flash of my passage through the door changed abruptly to the familiar orange walls of a Local Federation Police vessel. I was in a locked antechamber with plastic walls (metal probably interferes with the equilibrium of the instability when the generator is running, I surmised).

   Shortly afterwards, a Vice-Prefect uniform appeared on the door monitor and the face perched on the top of it, a Polavvian one, grinned at me awkwardly. "Welcome! How clever of you to join us." it said with smooth confidence. The awkwardness had been merely an unfamiliarity with the way grins work, I suppose.

   Hmm, I've just realised that this story could go on for an entire book, so I'm going to have to summarise...

   The Feds explained to me that they were chasing the Utnepi'i responsible for the spatial anomaly prank that I found in the Cotswolds back in May (and foolishly drove into without checking my calculations). The reason they had been watching me was that they thought I might be an accessory because I had used it for transport.
   I asked how they had known about my journey through the anomaly, and they told me that the 16-year-old gang boss in Indonesia (who was not from the Epsilon nebula as I had thought, but actually much further away, somewhere in Andromeda) bore me a grudge and had reported my presence to them in return for an amnesty on his petty crimes.

   In order to convince the Feds of my innocence I have been assisting them with their enquiries ever since. This has involved no small amount of travel, as we tracked the Utnepi blighters through almost every sector in spiral arm B: they were making for the galactic core, where they were probably hoping to evade capture due to the star density. Eventually we ran them to ground in what's commonly called a "dark rock" (a planet orbiting a neutron star), where they were hiding underground until the heat was off - which, given the legendary determination of a Polavvian Fed, and the time it would have taken to search, would have been a good few centuries (Earth reckoning), making this an extremely dull way for anybody to lay low. However, since unauthorised spatial engineering is punishable by anything ranging from two thousand years' imprisonment for a first offence all the way up to (for repeated and unrepentant crimes) enforced stasis for countless millennia, emerging only after the stars of the cosmos have all been extinguished... well, one could scarcely blame them.

   The arrest itself was a somewhat cumbersome affair, because the Utenpi'i had surrounded their hiding place with a dual-polarity labyrinth of space-time, cunningly ensuring that in order for us to catch them, they had to be arrested before we arrived. This led to a number of startling encounters with our future selves along the journey, which we only understood once we had been through the process and ended up backtracking through time roughly a dozen times, sometimes in the same sector, in order to find the rather ingenious pranksters at the centre of their little relativistic nest. My head is still reeling somewhat from solving the puzzles thereby presented, but I was rewarded with the gratitude of the Feds, who aren't used to dealing with this kind of cerebral crime, and I am now on their list of honoured consultants, giving me various useful privileges throughout the galaxy - of which I fully intend to take advantage when possible!

   The whole adventure took a good many years: although the hyperwaves didn't get home and get published here, I of course kept the messages, and I may write the story in a separate volume at some point. I discovered the hyperwave routing errors before returning home, and of course I realised that I needed to get back in time to the moment after I departed, in order to continue the blog consistently. However, those Knucklefeds made an error when calculating my exit point from their wormhole, and returned me several months later than intended, which is why you missed out on a few months of my babbling.

   I need to deal with a few awkward pieces of admin, largely relating to tax and rent payments, but in a little while I'll be settled again and able to start writing more of these posts. Thank you for your patience!

   The thing that I find most irritating is that due to my absence, I missed the award ceremony for my invention of "Cockpoppies", and much to my chagrin, the journal of botanical engineering now lists my honour as "posthumous". I shall have to correct this in Huckleberry Finnly fashion in due course - but I haven't the time at the moment.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Stag Night

  One of the drawbacks of keeping fit is familiarity with one's personal limits; when old age comes a-calling, it's immediately obvious that the peak of the mountain of ability is being eroded. Speaking for myself, it doesn't really apply because of my near-immortality (I use a combination of distributed intelligence, nano-engineering and hyperwave backups). Well... actually, I do have a good few little pains that bother me from time to time - but fortunately they all happen to be human beings, and can generally be relieved by some combination of diplomacy, persuasion, witty riposte, blackmail, actual bodily harm with a blunt instrument, disintegration or (in extreme cases if I'm feeling spiteful) forced viewing of Reality TV.

  That said, I do enjoy a good work-out and can often be found jogging under water. The English Channel is getting rather crowded with shipping though, and the noise can be off-putting. Sometimes I look for my exercise therapy elsewhere: Australia is rather nice because of the clear water and wonderful scenery, but fending off sharks can be irritating, and this has happened once or twice. In case you were wondering, my preferred method is to engage my cloaking device so that I look like Roy Scheider - then they swim away sharpish. Ha, just kidding! I actually just punch them on the nose.

  So, what's new? Ah yes, the whole "door in the tree" episode: some craziness occurred last night and I believe it may be relevant. I was working on my design for a new rubidium-based junct... actually, maybe I won't discuss that. Anyway, I was working; and all of a sudden I heard a gentle tapping on the window. I thought I had imagined it, but then it came again, and again. As you would expect, I crept slowly over to the curtains and then suddenly flung them wide and glared through the glass, hoping to terrify whoever was playing such a prank. There was nobody there, but I could still hear the tapping noise.

  I opened the window, and would you believe it? There was a stag beetle trying to get through the glass. Chuckling at my reaction, I examined the determined creature, who was head-butting the lighted wall of silicates repeatedly, falling back a little way down the sill, then trying again. I was about to close the window and leave him to it, when I suddenly froze. I had noticed what looked like a small antenna on the beetle's back. Hastily returning to my computer, I looked up the species online and found no such piece of anatomy. Clearly, I was being bugged...

  I got back to the open window just in time to see the beetle lift off and fly through the night in the direction of the very same tree that had the door in its trunk! This is just too much of a coincidence to be chance alone. I need to investigate that tree again.

Thursday, 30 June 2011

Encrypt 'em and Throw Away the Key!

   When W. S. Gilbert wrote for The Mikado that famous piece of legal philosophy, "let the punishment fit the crime", I don't think he went far enough. For me, beyond that agreeable sense of satisfaction imbued by the taking of an eye for a lie and a tooth for an untruth, there lurks an even more delicious and undiscovered flavour: the hilarious and spontaneous surrealism of making the punishment fit the crime in a bizarre way that can be understood only by the judge.

   In my travels on planet Earth I have encountered many people who are, shall we say, socially challenged. In order to exact revenge upon them, I have begun to resort to the above-mentioned 'abstract justice' techniques. It all began one evening when I was driving home and pulled into a petrol station to fill up. A few seconds later, a man pulled up on the other side of the pump (of which there was only one, to be shared by us) and started filling up before I got the chance. I contemplated, for a moment, the fact that his kind were ultimately doomed to extinction in the inevitable world of courtesy and intelligence that must one day appear if humanity doesn't drown in its own poison or light that one last large firework. And then it struck me. I deprecated him. It took but a moment to submit the RFC and establish a consensus, and now he and his kind all walk the planet with a big horizontal stick through their middles: the strikeout font of shame. This is a good thing, and it makes me feel warm and smug (sorry, I mean 'snug').

   From there, it was a short journey up the steps of progress; and now I have become the Dredd Judge, meting out Geek Justice wherever I go. Just yesterday, I hoisted up by his hair a noisy night-time reveller who was keeping me awake, and uninstalled his audio drivers: until the next update, he must now communicate in sign language. Last week I decompiled a football thug, amended his code to make him support the rival team and recompiled him - now his friends won't speak to him - ha! And the week before that, upon encountering a lady who seemed determined to disrupt my enjoyment of a film by talking to her companion, I made the rather inspired decision to move her to a virtual server with no network bridge.

  Am I insane? Should I be stopped? I'm not sure: all I know is that nobody minds - or indeed, even understands what is happening.

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Hoot Friend and Enter

   I meant to write this up yesterday, but ended up rather busy with my instruments because there was more evidence of space traffic. Something is definitely going on out there! Well, I'm sure it will all become clear soon what the game is. I just hope it's something quick and relatively harmless. Perhaps I should begin constructing a short-range wormhole, just in case...

   Well, it seems that my penchant for the more "down to Earth" type of adventure has been frustrated. This weekend just gone, I crept out in the quiet hours and shinned up the tree to have a look at this door that the landlord had reported. At first I thought it wasn't there, and that he had either lied or imagined it, but that seemed out of character somehow; so I continued with a careful and methodical search. I was scrutinised by a rather irritable tawny owl, who probably wanted to kick me out of the tree but lacked sufficient shoe size - not to mention mass.

   The door finally revealed itself as I glanced sidelong at the part of the trunk just below the branch where the landlord had been perched. It was a very faint and subtle outline, and I marvelled that he had spotted it in daylight. I began to fumble about, feeling foolish; but neither hinge nor handle was apparent. I did a scan with a pocket sonic, and oddly there seemed to be no cavity behind the piece of bark I was examining. That clinched it - someone must be having a laugh. Odd kind of joke to play, though - placing a fake door on a tree trunk, but high off the ground and so faint that it could barely be seen at night. I pondered. Somehow I knew that this mystery had not yet played out to its conclusion, but there was not really anything more I could do that night, so I had to drop down to the ground and creep back to the house. Mr. Tawny hooted at my departing back side in derision. I'll get him for that...

Wednesday, 22 June 2011


   Well, it's been quite a week! Firstly, the new car turned out to be a hybrid. I knew there was a chance of this, but hadn't bargained for the inconvenient lineage. The reconstructed model is, as far as I can determine, a Reliant/Lexus cross-breed with a trace of Transit van. Somewhat like a toddler, It goes pretty fast but has no rear view mirror and rolls over rather too easily. Next time I'll take more care to choose a set of wheels from a single vehicle.

   Secondly, I was walking in the local hills taking the air yesterday evening and discovered that something was wrong. At first, I couldn't identify the source of my unease; but then I took a good look at the stars, and noticed that they were all slightly too red-shifted. The effect lasted a couple of minutes and then died away. There can really be only one conclusion: someone was using a warp drive in the outer solar system.

   When I got home I checked on the broadband scanner in case there had been any encoded emf transmissions, but it came up blank - it's possible they were using lasers, which would make things much harder for me. I'm not sure what to think at this stage, but I'm not that worried really: granted, the worst case scenario is a fleet of Pyloturican destroyers bent on claiming new territory, but a far more likely explanation is that we're simply the subject of a Local Group Federation stake-out to catch some petty offender who's bolted down a rabbit hole until the heat's off.

   Just in case, I set up a local media scan for unusual incidents. There may be nothing to this, but even if I don't learn anything it's always hilarious watching the false positives! Last time there was a fellow in Texas who claimed to have seen the image of a piece of toast in the face of Jesus in a local painting of the Last Supper.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Back to Poisson

   OK, I have some wheels again! Four of them, in fact. I got them from the scrapyard and they're a good start. Tonight I will use reverse-engineering to reconstruct the original car and with any luck it will be one I like to drive. Who knows, it might even have a sun roof. I rather enjoy driving, though I have to admit that the roads can be gracely airvercrided these days. It was more fun in the 1920s. The 2070s run a close second actually, with their guided skyways - ever the aesthete, I like to visit now and then, and skim the edge of the Grand Canyon or zip over Everest.

   Things have moved on a little since I went away. There was quite a lot of junk mail on my doormat, and it took longer than usual to send it all back with the wrong forms in each envelope. This time I included a ten pound note in one of them, for no reason at all. With any luck they'll go crazy trying to work out why. Maybe they're even legally obliged to return it, which will be fun because I'll be able to see how long I can make it impossible for them to do so. Ha!

   I also ran into my landlord this morning, and he commented on the beard, which I had not shaved off at that point, and then asked me whether I'd been away. I told him I'd been to stay with family because of a crisis: the truth seemed like a bad idea at this point. He then flapped his large ears a couple of times and flew into a pine tree, where he sat on a weeping branch at the mid-point, cooing in sympathetic tones. He has always been "unusual", and this was normal by his standards. I walked away, confident that he would fly down again once I had gone. Later, his wife told me that upon his return he related to her in excited tones his discovery of a small door in the side of the tree, which he could not open. I made a note of it: perhaps the investigation of this unexpected find will make a nice little weekend project for me soon...

Monday, 13 June 2011

Dark Doings In The Docks

   Well here I am back home again, and the ground is still gently rocking under my feet. Our cargo crate floated in at around eleven last night, and I decided to get some sleep before disembarking. There was, naturally, a small problem regarding the customs guys, due to the fact that I had no passport. I had spent a fair amount of time on the voyage mulling over my options on this point: the crew members had assumed I was just stranded and had not probed very deeply into my cover story (that I had been forced into an unofficial mission of industrial espionage by an overbearing boss and had cocked it up completely through incompetence). The chance that the customs office might show a similar naïveté seemed vanishingly small, and although I had essentially done nothing wrong, explaining my international movements without involving all kinds of higher agencies seemed infeasible. The minute I said "calculus" out loud, let alone "spatial anomaly" I would have blown my chance to get anybody at all on side.

   Thus it was that I found myself, at around 4:30 this morning, dropping furtively down a rope ladder into an inspection dinghy off the starboard side and making off quietly in the direction of the river Hamble. I had left a sizeable bribe for the privilege and had agreed to leave the boat with a friend of Zeppo's who lived nearby on the waterfront. On the way, I had a bit of a disagreement with a seagull, who took a bizarre liking to my nose and attempted to remove it. In return, I grabbed the irritating creature, inserted my portable mind bridge into its skull and gave it my complete memories of evolutionary history. Upon its release, it flew drunkenly over to a marker buoy and perched on the top, eyeing me ruefully. I doubt it had the neural capacity to process the lesson and draw new conclusions, but with any luck it now understood its place in the scheme of things, and might think twice before instigating any further nasal vendettas.

   Having woken up Zeppo's friend with a tap on the window (he nearly set the dogs on me!) I explained the deal and he tied up the boat, offering me a coffee. I declined, thinking only of my zero-G sleep field at home. It's quite a walk from Hamble and the dark semi-rural roads seemed somehow unreal. I saw two foxes, a deer, eighty-nine snails, four hundred trillion viruses and one drunken BBC producer who asked me whether he was anywhere near some place called Made of Ale. I told him he'd had enough already.

   Anyway, my next move will be to shave off the beard, buy a new car and generally pick up my various nefarious plots where I left off. I'm going to miss the travelling, if I'm honest. I must do it more often - only next time I'll use a more conventional mode of transport, or at least remember to take my passport through the wormhole...

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Diffraction is Grate!

   Just a quick note from good old Southampton Water (yes, almost home!) - I have determined that Zardoz is a pipeline marker. Right, got to go as I have a load of James Bond stuff to prepare for now - no time to explain that, sorry! More soon...

Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Approaching Middle Earth!

   Well, this is really travelling in style! We are now passing through the Suez Canal, and it's awesome: one of the great engineering feats of recent centuries, and for years it's been one of my ambitions to see it. And drink the lot. Well, you know me - I think big.

   Yesterday as we passed through the Red Sea, I insisted upon walking around the deck perimeter for most of the day. This was merely so that I would thenceforth be able to proclaim "I'm a Red Sea pedestrian and proud of it!", of course. To the port side there was a blood-red sunset just as we caught sight of The Brothers, a small group of islands with a lighthouse. One hypothesis for the name Red Sea involves the bacterial blooms, or 'sea sawdust' that appear in the water...

   A reddish cyanobacterium
   Encountered a drop of deuterium;
   This heavier water
   Gave rise to a daughter,
   With radioactive delirium.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

On Your Marx, Get Wet, Go!

   The navigator on this vessel goes by the name of Zeppo. Not kidding. No idea whether that's his real name - you can't always be sure around here. Anyway, we were bored yesterday on his evening off, and after we had exhausted the potential for active discussion of spherical trigonometry, he suggested we play a traditional game called Double Blind. This ominous title put me immediately on my guard, and I was neither surprised nor comfortable when he explained the rules. Basically, the idea is that you each mix a drink in secret using your choice of ingredients, making up a total of half a litre. Then you drink them both. The first part involves downing exactly half of your own drink, and for the second part you swap glasses and drink half of the other one. If you are both still standing upright, you play another round with different ingredients, and continue in this fashion until one of you falls over. DON'T try this at home, kids!

   I suggested that we each keep notes of what ingredients we used in each round, and leave them in our pockets in case we didn't make it through the night and needed medical attention. I was half-serious: this sounded pretty extreme. Zeppo ducked into the officers' bar and emerged two minutes later holding a glass of faintly purple liquid with a red froth on top. Grim-faced, I followed suit. Of course it was all an act: I was confident that I was going to win this one. After all, I once visited Frexigg and spent a while attempting to forget a messy relationship disaster involving both swordplay and semantics, by drinking the local Flicsh'kmarrg (loosely translated as 'oil of volcano snake'), which has been known to cause even the locals to tear off their own flesh and throw it behind them as they flee, rather than be devoured by the large three-headed Grrugglil they firmly believe is chasing them down Main Street.

   I won when Zeppo dropped like a stone halfway through the second round. I confess that his concoctions were terrifyingly potent, and judging by the apparent fairground-ride motion of the ship today, most of which is certainly not due to the ocean, I believe that he might have used something from the infirmary - and perhaps even the engine room - as well as the usual liquors. He is still asleep in his cabin, and I covered for him by telling the captain that he was up all night dealing with a loose bracket on the deck.

   His reaction to the two empty glasses I produced during the game was mixed. He couldn't work out whether I was being stupid or just trying to cheat. However, I don't think he'll be challenging me to another game any time soon. Here is a list of my ingredients in total:

Round One

* A non-Riemannian Hypersquare
* Two counts of arson, sentence suspended
* The feeling of anxiety prompted by seeing an old enemy in the supermarket
* Some qualia from the id

Round Two
* The essence of Gödel's Incompleteness Theorem
* An explanation of how double-entry book-keeping works
* Several memories of seeing an actual Grrugglil in a zoo on Frexigg
* My great-grandmother's opinion about water-skiing (I think this is probably what finished him)

Saturday, 4 June 2011


   Boy, is it windy. The box boat I've hitched a ride on is coping well due to its enormous dimensions, but those waves look pretty boisterous, and would probably swallow a house without stopping. Every now and then, one of them notices us and turns angrily in our direction, to end its short life as a rather fetching fountain of saline spray, leaping over the rails of the port bow. I'm allowed to sleep in a spare cabin, which beats the traditional lifeboat stowaway paradigm I guess; but it's not exactly the Ritz.

   Since my last entry, I have: worked as a logger; been wrongfully arrested for loitering within tent (it was a wigwam); designed a new kind of water stilts; diverted a stream in order to investigate a cave that turned out to be the disused secret base of a supervillain; eaten Ngapi-Jaw (this involves seafood stir-fried in spices and is actually rather good); and watched a number of pleasant sunsets over the Gulf of Boni. Although I had some difficulty explaining how I had materialised in the nearby forest and almost destroyed one of the smaller trees in the process, the kind folk of Watubangga seem to have accepted my presence with very little scepticism, and have done a lot to help me (in return for keeping my car as a souvenir).

   I was very lucky to get aboard this freighter: I narrowly escaped capture by the local gangster, a tall youth of some sixteen summers who thinks he's hard. In fact he doesn't look local, and I suspect he's from the Epsilon nebula region, in disguise like me. It's a good job he didn't reach me before I got on the boat because I would have been forced to kill him, which would have been somewhat poor payment for his earlier hospitality (which had been very warm up until the point when he realised that I was never going to like Chas 'n' Dave as much as he evidently - and bewilderingly - did). No matter - it's all behind me now.

   We're due back in blighted Blighty in a week or two, so I'll update you then (or sooner if anything interesting happens, which seems unlikely in such a predicament). In the mean time, I'm going to be studying my calculus carefully to avoid any more silly mistakes.

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Manifold Destiny

   I drove three hundred miles today, encountering the usual depths of ignorance from those obnoxious cell colonies presuming to qualify as thinking beings.  I initially chose to restrict my locus to the customary four dimensions, the other seven being a bit of a tight squeeze: but - Yauser! - imagine my surprise when I discovered that a spatial anomaly had manifested halfway down the A423.  I suspect that certain pranksters from the Utnepi sector had been at work: only they could have pulled it off so effectively.

   The thing was magnificent, protruding out of the Cotswolds like a Julia set on acid.  An obvious seven-dimensional manifold if ever I saw one.  Others were driving past, oblivious to the new formation in the rocks; but I saw it immediately, and pulled over to have a look.  Highly amused, I leaned against my port side wing and watched as a sheep ambled down the hillside and underwent a translation via what I guessed was a pair of homogeneous 8-matrices.  As it passed overhead all its entrails flickered around me in an incredible display of ovine innard acrobatics, and I could even see the normally-infinitesimal fields of the standard forces stretched out in a scintillating web of rippled spacetime.  The animal was oblivious, and ended up happily trotting away in a field on the other side of the road.  I chuckled for a moment as I contemplated the forthcoming reaction of the farmer to this mystery.

   Whipping out an envelope, I did a quick sketch and calculated that there was a Point of Universal Projection.  I derived its location, and extracted the entry point for my destination.  It turned out to be just beyond the hedge where I was parked.  Thinking I would save some time getting home, I opened the gate and drove through, closing the gate behind me (I may be an insane incognito Cosmic Lord, but I know my Country Code).  Driving quickly up the muddy field, I found the entry point and accelerated into it.

   And that's where I made my blunder.  I am writing this entry from Indonesia.  Kdapt knows how I'm going to get home.

   Dammit!  I never could integrate by parts with eight variables without dropping a term somewhere.

Sunday, 29 May 2011


   Decided not to detonate the bomb, since I calculated a 0.00453% chance that it might cause a dark matter chain reaction and destroy the galaxy.  Better safe than sorry; I've fed it to the dogs next door in the vet's - they sounded hungry, and although I can't reveal the full design, it does involve a quantity of prime steak - lucky for my canine buddies!

   Well, the daffodils are late this year, aren't they?  Late, as in the late daffodil.  It's a sort of threat, you see... I'm trying to make it clear to my floral cousins that I don't want any more of this "now you see us, now you don't" nonsense next year.  We want a good solid showing for a minimum of a week.

   ee's 'avin a go at the flowers now!

   Who said that?  Centurion, arrest that man.  And give me his gourd - I can use it for my next experiment.

Thursday, 26 May 2011

I Can't Believe They're Not Flora!

   Well, bless my spiritually-interpreted neural macro-pattern!  I appear to have been awarded the Nobel prize for Poppycock, for my work on cultivation of very spiky, luminous and hardy flowers to grow in pavement cracks, preventing pedestrians from stepping on them and thus reducing the annual count of ursine predation events.  In recognition of this momentous event, I have decided to name the flowers, which are genetically engineered of course, Cockpoppies.  I must say this is such a great honour!  The award ceremony is in July, so there will be plenty of time to grow my original head back after my brief role as an extra in the virtual retro B-movie It Came From Earth! (in which I play an unsuspecting redshirt from Tau Ceti and die in the first 15 minutes, but hey, it's still fame!).

   So anyway, back to the humdrum world of my personal projects, and the total conversion bomb is coming along nicely in the back garden.  Fortunately, the landlord doesn't suspect anything: he thinks I'm building an amateur radio.  His life will be spared when I am emperor of the universe.

Monday, 16 May 2011

On This Day In Future History...

1. Floods and mudslides in the Sudan, as global warming proceeds apace (2028)
2. New VR TV show called The X Multiple launched, featuring talents with very little people.  A rival network starts a show called X Spots the Mark (2031)
3. NASA bought by Nissan, who proceed to construct a new space passenger shuttle with a typically lame Engrish name, probably something like the Nissan NASA Nice (2045)
4. I awaken from cryosleep and am given a hot new young body.  Unfortunately someone mislabels my dewar as female, so it's a woman's body.  Making the best of a bad job, I change my name to Loretta and go on to become an actress (2090)
5. Ice age begins (2092)
6. Ice age ends abruptly after world government decides to abandon alternative energy and reintroduce coal-fired power stations (2102)

   Well, it's been a less than frabjous day, as I am weaning myself off the caffeine.  Headaches all round!  Actually, headaches shouldn't really be described as round; they are rather more star-shaped.  With the points poking through the cranium like a hedgehog in a deflating balloon.  I like hedgehogs (though I couldn't eat a whole one).  Yes, the day has been positively (or negatively) scrumshawn to the plipth degree.  A total waswonger if you ask me.  But at least I got some music written.  I wrote half a note.  I plan to write the other half tomorrow, and if they match I shall have to rest for a week before writing the next one.

   In a master stroke of high curmudgeonly pigeon dudgeon, I note that there appears to be a foreign pigeon in my garden.  Instead of singing if you knew Susie it seems to be singing if you knew where I was last Tuesday you might tell MI5 but they would never believe you, and even if they did, how are they going to penetrate the rain forest and find my top secret hideout?  At least, that's what it sounded like to me.  Catchy tune, too...

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Unglamorous Uses Of A Time Machine

1. Taking a photo of yourself when nobody else is available.
2. Showing a modern day thug how hard he really is by giving him a ride on the Crystal Beach Cyclone.
3. Nipping back 30 minutes to go to the shop when you realise that you've forgotten to buy an essential ingredient and the recipe's already cooking.
4. Transport of water from your pond to the top of a turbine sluice in order to set up a temporal paradox that resembles perpetual motion, but actually escapes this impossibility by draining potential energy from the space-time continuum in your locality, in order to power your garden barbecue lights.
5. Returning to when you wrote unglamorous uses of a time machine, number 5 and erasing the end of it just to make people wond
6. Retrospectively stocking your beer fridge when a friend visits unexpectedly.
7. Washing your clothes when you are about to leave for an interview and only have a dirty shirt and 20 minutes to spare.
8. Ringing yourself up to make it look as if you have friends.
9. Finding out whether you snore.  OK, this is for single people only, but let's face it: if you've built a time machine, you're probably single.
10. Cheating at the local pub quiz.
11. Getting in that extra pint when closing time has arrived.
12. Capturing a slapstick moment for You've Been Framed when you had no camera at the time.

Déjà vu

   Found a time machine in the garden; it had been uncovered by the excavations for the new house.  I took a quick trip back to the Wednesday before last to check that it worked, and played a little prank on my former self.  Heh!  On returning, I hid the machine in the trees by the disused path that leads up the hill - it should be safe enough for now, until I can think of a safe use for it.  Actually, I already have a few that have occurred to me over the years.  I'll dig them out a bit later and share them...

Saturday, 14 May 2011


   Discovered today that spacetime is curved, not like a toroid, but like a Klein bottle. This means that if you travel far enough you will arrive where you started but everything will be inside out.

   I have a nasty feeling I have already done this.

Friday, 13 May 2011


   There was utter chaos throughout the day today, which I choose to blame on the death last year of the father of fractals, Benoit Mandelbrot. One assumes he has passed on to another (fractional) dimension... perhaps 2.554?  Anyway, my adoration of caffeine continues unabated, and my juggling skills appear to be stagnant, but getting faster (these two facts are of course merely correlated, not dependant). I managed to collide two overlapping pairs of balls in a Venn diagram of topological impact loci - an experience I am in no hurry to repeat with anything capable of drawing blood.

   On my way home I stopped, stopped upon me. Force the tools available. I decided to use the tools available for cabarets, Bar Mitzvahs and all kinds of outdoor function of the two mutually exclusive variables whose partial differential with respect to time may be expressed himself through the unusual medium of moulded... well, mould. Taken from cheese and biscuits with your coffee, Sir?  Or perhaps a grapes of Wrath of my beard shall slay thee; fear ye the wrath of my beard for it is mighty and bears no facile jest.

   Sorry, I appear to have gone a bit jacket.

Thursday, 12 May 2011

New Ron

   Today was a little less fraught: my damaged knees coped very nicely with my lunch-time excursion over the limits of subjective identity to the foothills of the id. I noticed that the temporal revisionist theory of perception was looking a little drab though - maybe someone could give it a lick of paint. Tomorrow I plan to hike through the continuous nature of conscious self-awareness as a pre-requisite for personal identity, provided the rain holds off. It will give me a chance to try out my new "Concept Footwear" with the think-faster stripes.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Start Of Stream

   Today I attacked my toes with a crampon in a fit of pique, and ended up climbing the North face of my own legs. Having negotiated the knees, I decided that the view would be better from my head, so I returned to my Cartesian Theatre. As i got in, I saw my reflection for an instant, then realised there was no mirror and I was looking out of the window. It was really strange!  Why would I see myself looking in my own window?  I must be going crazy. Crazier, actually...

   Quite a boring day ensued, with the possible exception of the arrival of five alien press-gang heavies who demanded to know why I had not shown up for my tour of duty on their intergalactic pirate ship. After a somewhat heated "discussion", the green stains of which I am still cleaning off the walls of my living room, we managed to use a process of elimination to establish that I had been drunk at the time, and in fact had agreed to be a pilot, having recently watched The Last Starfighter. The three of us had to laugh!  I managed to placate them by pointing out the uncanny resemblance to the first act of The Pirates Of Penzance, and I gave them a copy of my DVD, which was received with enthusiasm (though they insisted that I remove the anti-piracy warning or they would vaporise the Earth).

   The only thing I want to know is, what on Grootix am I supposed to do with the three bodies?  I suppose I could incinerate them without getting into too much trouble with the council. After all, they aren't human remains.