May 2005

Evacuation Redux

A full night of sleep has cleared my head and allowed me to review the events of last night. It is apparent to me now that the theatre evacuation was no minor security scare or safety problem. It was clearly one of the slickest and most efficient cover-ups in the history of black helicopters. It would have been impossible to conduct without advanced mind control, well beyond the current state of human technology.

Here are the clues that led me to a greater understanding of what had been done:

1. SonOfVirge commented as we left the theatre that time had passed very quickly since we entered. He was surprised at the lateness of the hour. This observation, coming from a teenager for whom several hours at a screen are credited as "just a few minutes", should have told me that something unusual was happening.

2. There was a complete absence of anxiety in the crowd. The crowd's phlegmatic uncritical acceptance of the need to evacuate, together with my own uncharacteristic self-censored curiosity should have not only been ringing alarm bells, it should have had Mike Oldfield's greatest hit on track-repeat.

3. Most importantly, the evacuation served to interrupt my viewing of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. The parallels between real life events and elements of the plot should have been a giveaway. The only thing that could have stopped me seeing the connection last night is mind-control.

I guess they didn't count on any of the victims wearing a tinfoil hat to bed. I'll tell more of my revelation later. Right now I have to go and see my private brain-care specialist.

Geek Interrupted

We must have been close to half way through the movie when it happened. The screen went completely dark; the soundtrack stopped; we waited with bated breath for a resumption. This had to be a silly cinematic mind game, didn't it?

It happened at a tense moment in the plot. I expected to hear Stephen Fry as the Guide telling us that this break in continuity had been inserted in order to reduce nervous tension--to reassure us that Trillian would escape unharmed.

I was wrong.

The movie had stopped. Mutterings arose from the audience. Finally a theatre attendant's voice told us to evacuate the theatre complex and the shopping centre. We could retain our ticket stubs and present them to the box office for a refund later.

I still don't know what happened to cause the evacuation. Apart from police directing crowds and a general quiet exodus of patrons from the theatres and restaurants, I saw nothing unusual. There were no fire engines, no police marksmen in padded vests, no helicopters circling overhead, no news crews, no trembling weeping victims being comforted or carried off on stretchers, no palls of smoke, twisted metal, gas masks, not even a flashing light. In short, it lacked all of the drama one would normally associate with a sudden evacuation of a public building. How tediously suburban!

I thought about going to ask one of the police officers, but immediately realised it would be more responsible to exit the scene quickly and let them do their jobs.

There's nothing on the newspaper sites. Yet.

I guess we'll get to see HHGG some other time. *yawn*

Fictionology FAQ

What is Fictionology?

Fictionology is a religion above all other religions. It both embraces and transcends almost every other known religion. A true Fictionologist chooses which Fictions to believe and holds to them, drawing meaning, instruction, moral guidance, entertainment and comfort from them.

What is Naive Fictionology?

Most adherents of traditional religions refuse to admit that they are actually practising a type of Fictionology. We refer to this as Naive Fictionology. It is a much more mentally draining position, and has been shown in scientific tests to consume as much as 90% of an adherent's concentration just in coping with the interplay of simultaneously-held conflicting ideas. Some hold that it is this mental load that prevents Naive Fictionologists from comprehending true Fictionology.

Isn't Fictionology just believing any old crap?

An extremely facile view of Fictionology may lead to that interpretation. However, any mature, intelligent adult with even a rudimentary understanding of philosophy would recognise the wonder of the existence of narrative, the benefits of complete immersion in Fiction, and the edification that comes from exercising a faith. You must learn to think on the next level up from the prescriptive religions you're used to.

Do Fictionologists have churches?

Some do, but you won't always recognize them if you're used to traditional churches. Some meet regularly in small groups outside movie theatres. Some gather in members' homes to read, watch videos or role play. Some dress up and meet in dark noisy clubs. It depends on the Fiction selection of the group.

What are the benefits of Fictionology?

Peace of mind. Understanding. Significance. Prosperity. Friendship. Confidence. True humanity. (Not necessarily all at the same time and not necessarily just for you.)

Can I just choose my favorite book and believe it?

You can, but that won't grant you all the benefits of Fictionology. You need to know the way to apply Real Fiction to your ways of thinking.

How can I become a Fictionologist?

Send me an email and I'll add you to the growing list of people waiting to purchase my new book "Fictionology: A Panacea for the Information Age (Part 1)"

Fictionology Gets Bad Press

[From Pharyngula: It sounds so absurd, it might just be real…] Why oh why oh why must reporters pretend that all Fictionologists believe the same things? Read this pathetic mischaracterization in The Onion. And they quote a plastic surgeon saying:

"Sure, it's total bullshit," Jurgenson added. "But that's Fictionology. Praise Batman!"

That's disgusting! How can they call that fair and balanced reporting?!? Of course they only interview the Fictionology extremists--the Batman-worshippers, the big-budget Hollywood plastic-fiction Ellroyites--and make out that those are the views of the whole religion. By Zaphod, that makes me mad. People like Jurgenson give Fictionology a bad name.

Talk to any Rational Fictionologist and you'll understand that what we have is a sensible and logical faith. Fiction is only "pretend" while it's forming in the mind of an Author. Once it's published, it's real. (BTW, retcon is for the faithless hacks who lack the imagination to see the potential truth of Real Fiction.)

It's clear that we Rational Fictionologists need to do a better job of promoting our beliefs.

Delayed Double Dactyl

I should have added this DD last week. It was written in response to Bad Rat Socar's further attempts to blame birds for toad-rage.

Rattus socraticus
Learingly libelled my
Fine feathered friends,

Only to open her
Up to the larks of li-
tigious new trends.

Lunchtime Double Dactyl

It's really hard to ditch the monster image. (Inspired by Collision Detection: Humbolt squid captured alive via Pharyngula: Florid squid prose)

Gigas (Dosidicus),
Migrating north from its
Home in the deep,

Causes reporters to
Paint purple prose while the
Old guy's asleep.

Exactly how stupid?

Virge's Law: Whenever you think nobody could be that stupid, think again.

In the Kansas Kangaroo Court on "evidence against evolution" (the Intelligent Design movement is staging a publicity event while the science community has refused to dignify the farce by attending) one of the witnesses called was Mustafa Akyol, an Islamic creationist from Turkey. BAV, the radical Islamist group that Akyol represents, denies not only evolution, but also the holocaust. They present evolution as a conspiracy of the Jewish and American imperialists to promote new world order and fascist motives. Creationists have already won the battle in Turkey. BAV harassed, threatened and slandered Turkish academics, leading to a situation where no scientist is prepared to speak against the creationist view.

Read more at The Panda's Thumb.

If you think it's stupid calling radical Islamist witnesses to support your case in a publicity event intended to woo the conservative American public, then look at the quality of the rest of the witnesses. Here's what happened in the "court" (from Panda's Thumb):

Then, out of the blue, under a withering cross-examination by Science Coalition attorney Pedro Irigonegaray the hearing room was electrified by Edward Peltzer's admission that he had not read the science standards draft written by the pro-evolution majority of curriculum committee. Peltzer, a Scripps Institution oceanographer and intelligent design witness was flown in from California to share his expert evaluation of the competing science standards drafts, and is currently enjoying the hospitality of Kansas taxpayers.

As the day wore on, each witness in turn was forced to fess up – to an increasingly scornful Irigonegaray — that they too hadn't bothered to read the majority draft before giving their testimony. This despite the fact that each had earlier testified – in response to questions from intelligent design attorney John Calvert – that the minority draft was superior to the pro-science majority draft.

The sad thing is that these "witnesses" will never see themselves as being dishonest for giving their testimonies without having read and understood the issues.