Reading, Short And Deep #417 – The Wraith by Dora Sigerson Shorter

Reading, Short And Deep

Reading, Short And Deep #417

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss The Wraith by Dora Sigerson Shorter

Here’s a link to a PDF of the story from The Express And Telegraph, Saturday, June 1, 1907 (Adelaide, Western Australia).

The Wraith was first published in Pearson’s Magazine, (UK), May 1907.

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The SFFaudio Podcast #713 – READALONG: Ghostland by Edward Parnell and Like A Thief In Broad Daylight by Slavoj Žižek

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #713 – Jesse and Connor Kaye talk about Ghostland: In Search Of A Haunted Country by Edward Parnell and Like A Thief In Broad Daylight: Power In The Era Of Post-Human Capitalism by Slavoj Žižek

Talked about on today’s podcast:
a novel, a memoir, Edward Parnell only wrote one other book, the writing life, The Listeners, 2019, folk horror, this is gonna be much like Mark Fisher’s The Weird And The Eerie, ghost stories, such a memoir, interwoven, to much me me me me me me me, the subject, the author’s story, invested by the end, because story, the emotional hitter, commercial, television movie references, television adaptations, it hits like a very specific and narrow memoir, rambles to look at the places that inspired the writings and the people to live there, an hourglass and a skull, time and death, The Wicker Man, a raven, forests, the ghost of the grim reaper, bird imagery, bird watching, taking pictures, survey work, notes, on the website, key figures, Shirley Jackson, Stephen King, Ray Bradbury, the British landscape, Susan Cooper, Walter De La Mare, Algernon Blackwood, William Hope Hodgson, Tam O’ Shanter, artists, Houdini, most of the assessments, The Night Land, The House On The Borderland, The Ghost Pirates, when he encounters them, children’s authors, Lucy M. Boston, the Green Knowe series, Mr Jim Moon, Jim Moon is this guy, media influenced him, Hypnogoria, The Children Of The Stones, the Doctor Whos, Quatermass at the end, Quatermass And The Pit, the 1979 Quatermass with the planet people, my brother’s dying, my mom has this disease, more literary in the UK, a really good publicist, we get Ready Player One, nostalgia tied to something real, attracted to these works, loss and death, inexorable forces, reading ghost stories and horror stories is therapeutic, therefore private and not to be read by anyone, three underlines, she goes blind, the period of time when these things are happening, the present day, this journey I’m taking through time and place, an enthusiastic book reviewer, Skule Skerry by John Buchan, Buchan’s best supernatural story, Edward Parnell’s brain on paper, he likes birds, an emotional book, leukemia, being in highschool, we’re friends is we’re broken in the same way, the opium we’re addicted to is weird fiction and horror, they’re not facing it again and again, the ideology of rom-coms, an extensive movie collection, a binful of movies, not happy movies, prison movies, science fiction movies, drama, The Lack podcast, eerie in fact, romantic comedies are ideological, this is fun, crime action, thriller drama, a very narrow opiate, facing the scary thing, escapism, escape from the horror, the black pill and white pill, horror is also escapism, emotional catharsis, cocaine bumps in the bathroom of a gas station, jump scares, two adaptations of Oh Whistle, And I’ll Come To You, My Lad, Michael Hordern, mumbles and putters, I just want a happy movie, films about cancer, Caterpillars by E.F. Benson, phantasmagorical light that consumes him like a cancer, metaphor, The Voice In The Night, pathos for people who did nothing wrong, lepers but worse, throat cancer, influenced, why does this stuff exist, upon first seeing The Wicker Man, it’s not fair, a bit of a jerk, a bit of a prude, that’s terrible and that’s the point, Arthur Machen’s The Cosy Room, everything is fine, everything is good, everything is fine, everything is good, everything is fine, everything is good, he can’t help but think of it, weird fiction as opposed to horror, The Willows, what we know about reality, Flannan Isle lighthouse, lighthouse keepers went missing, a D&D module based on The Sleeper by Edgar Allan Poe, you open the house and there is all the food set on the table, cooling, where are the residents, a true short story not based on reality, The Lighthouse by Edgar Allan Poe, Robert Bloch finish, The Lighthouse (2019), something bad is going to happen, a true event, how much is embellished?, was it really warm though?, was the candle still smoking, Horror Of Fang Rock, no physical trauma from the page itself, themes and experiences one step away from reality, overdramatic, getting mad at the film, banal evil, Howie goes to the school, Rowan’s desk, a beetle tethered to a nail, that’s him, this poor thing, desensitized to the banal cruelty, if you grow up on a farm, a sacrifice, animals in there too, pigs and chickens, accept that sacrifice as a requirement, a purpose to the sacrifice, this doesn’t accomplish, just torture, do you really know that?, no school shootings on this island, The Lottery by Shirley Jackson, the answer is not in the story, tradition, eating meating, I’m a vegan now, I choose what goes into my body, to great success, growing up in this tradition, a good ghost story, media things first works of writing not done by committee, Nigel Kneale, new Star Trek, it’s not really terrible, I’m still watching it, I’m not super-disappointed, the pain is so much less, written by a committee, hit these beats, too contrived, and dishonest, memes, fully grokking memes, even dishonest memes are honest in a way regular media can’t be, trying to make a point, resonating with somebody about something, an Avenger movie, Iron Man’s looking defeated, out of wormholes, that feeling that is generated in that moment and that scene, that meme’s stickiness, take that vision and adapt, The Tractate Middoth, not single vision or adapted from a single vision, committeed and commercial, reach exceeds grasp, why is that?, I would recommend it to other people, one sort of subject, his loss, flower language, his own personal truth, forget that, self exploitative, no falsity, all genuine, you need to punch this up, it hurts in a way that is genuine, people who haven’t had it will never be able to write that in a way that is at all convincing, cancer in media, not-genuine, the cancer film industry, dementia, making Connor angry, a cheap emotional device, genuine or ungenuine, I don’t need to know that I can fake it, the Our Opinions Are Correct podcast, Cory Doctorow on writing about guns, incorrect details, why should I care about something you don’t care about, a modified SIG Sauer, that style of writing is a mistake, really interesting ideas, Unauthorized Bread, loading the toaster, there’s the story, the details about any particular scene are there to get you to the ideas, maybe I didn’t need to read this whole thing, it’s a sign, gone to the place, confined to Britain proper, based on the experiences, the story reviews, how The Willows works, what trips Algernon Blackwood took, he found a dead body, how disconcerting, upsetting, traumatic, no wonder The Willows, Stephen King’s The Body, based on reality, that’s how kids are, especially boys, a dead body!, your currency in the kid community, years later, you remember that time we found a dead body, yeah the one I found, perversity comes from truth, a bullied short guy, responsible for the gyms we see all around us today, gyms are everywhere, too early, way ahead of his time, Physical Culture magazine, a McFadden publication, Ghost Stories, Liberty, the eugenics movement, WWI, the wrong location, go where the success happens, being a Hollywood movie star in Austria, atomic physicist in a backwoods community with no cyclotron, Jo Walton’s Among Others, witch, reading a lot of old fiction, the depth of the book is not there in the same way, is this the house where?, do you know anyone who was alive when?, looking at birds, the interleaving in, the journey itself, daytrips, communicating those experiences, his phone, sourcing the text message to get the date, 1982, February 15th, Tuesday, sciatica, 292s, I’m reading The Hobbit to the kids, on chemo, he’s dying here, there’s something wrong, a long term list of goals, I’m on a death path here, it can’t be true, don’t look it up, at the core, who is this who is coming?, a helluvah phrase, on the beach, the figure is coming towards him across the sand, this inevitable force, incomprehensible but coming for you, cancer, dice being rolled happening constantly, the wrong number once to often, no control over it, bad decisions, started smoking again, Korean ginseng, selenium, Steve Jobs, there’s hope, you don’t want there to be hope, we had fun, we talked about the old days, we joked about my hat, spend more time with the kids, say hello to mom and thank her, a good cry, horrible trauma for the whole family, not wanting to be there, I couldn’t be there, did it cut too close to the bone?, making it worse, completely helpless, taking people’s mind off it can make it worse, joking around as best she can, I’m a pirate, not something you can talk to kids at school about, didn’t want to be pitied, or treated differently, taking notice, they’re adults they know a little more about it, the heroes if there are any, the medical professionals, helping people out of wheelchairs, a kindly word here or there, service, nobody did anything wrong, if we could just get some more money, rumors and hopes, what’s it gonna kill me?, beyond formal treatment, do the things I like to do, eat delicious food and smoke cigarettes, you’re going to make it happen, make the kill, make the death, make the die, the big push against cigarettes, cigarettes = cancer, there are reasons that people smoke, regulating brains, wiser, a trip to Vietnam, drinking beer, cigarettes are very expensive in Australia, half my rent, 50 cents a packet, maybe I’ll try smoking, I just enjoy smoking, benefits to smoking (not related to the actual consumption of tobacco), social things, to avoid social awkwardness, something to do with your hands, cosy up to, gotta light, vaping actively as social?, astonished by the amount of smoking in the UK, no adverting, covered in cancer, shock policy, driving dangerously, drinking, selling cigarettes, working class, I just hate these images on the packet, Player’s Lights, a cool drawing of a sailor, a cancerous tumor, $12 a pack, Connor was a drug dealer, synthetic hallucinogens, herbal stuff that was unregulated, on the edge, don’t hallucinate at the gas station, off the radar, addictive?, alcohol, can you use fiction that way?, some new thing every time, genre is so established, this little tiny niche, fulfill any particular niche, going back, what was anthologized, The Dark Is Rising by Susan Cooper, a pre-Harry Potter hit, Alan Garner, too late, kinda kiddy, an interesting mythology, am I gonna get that wonder and amazement hit?, it’s raining outside while I read this book, we’re connected, what we do on this podcast, running out of good books to read, key figures, Robert Aickman, Arthur Conan Doyle was deluding himself, self-delusion, spiritualism, for the propaganda he did during WWI, in service of government some, Sir Anthony Hopkins, go an fight the hun, originally his own son died, Teddy Roosevelt, Kermit, cognitive dissonance, a peripheral figure, Rupert Brooke, died in WWI as usual, Robert Burns, bisexual, rewatching Star Trek, why is Star Trek so good, what I know now, what Roddenberry said about Wagontrain in space, a space western, Oregon trail, more like Kung Fu, crossing the country, The Littlest Hobo, like Lassie with no owners, island hopping, a particular idea they’re going to explore, allusions in the episode titles, digging into these things, the title of a Star Trek episode, this is a wonderful place, typical human reaction to an idyllic, ah the Tahiti syndrome, an amazingly hard to understand poem, probably gave a baby to, This Side Of Paradise, death is terrible because we won’t be together bodied, the horror of not being together forever perfectly in paradise, really about something, being disembodied together forever, the wise, the older people, I don’t want the real world, she’s going to get old, he died young, a truth you can get in poems, I’m going to write a star trek episode, what if you are an old M.R. James style man and found a whistle, there is no relaxing, an insubstantial book, we lucked out then huh?, educational, definitional, the history, it turned out to be a lot more, researching folk horror, 1993, it’s very new, a realization that this is there, one of three movies, The Devil Rides Out (1968), Witchfinder General (1968), a secret cult, Vincent Price, The Blood On Satan’s Claw (1971), a confection for the film, fantastic elements, a Hammer movie?, there is a monster, folk horror with a monster, an evil being, literary vs. filmic, Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Ritual (2017), Midsommar (2019) the definitive folk horror film, a new folk horror essay, misunderstanding all the bird sequences, the diversity of bird wildlife, they don’t have big animals in the UK, hedgehogs and birds, foxes, they decimated their mega-fauna, black bears, keep your head on a pivot, trainspotting and bird-watching, snakes AND marsupials, a million different marsupials, a good aspect, genuine interest, part of his brain downloaded into the book, talk to somebody with a common interest, a family of birdwatchers, Like A Thief In Broad Daylight by Slavoj Žižek, scattered, what’s his overall theme, two follow ups, more focused, Žižek blogposts, a compilation, excellent at breaking them down, an unpopular main mode, jokes, some Yugoslav country, is smoking permitted?, of course not, you will find ashtrays in the room, he loves jokes, youtube something, mannerisms, the weird show, the thick accent, a lot of ideas, experiences, related through an almost obsessive collection and interest in jokes, not insanely bad, the officials in charge have no senses of humour, George W. Bush, the joke is him, invasion of Iraq, and Iraq too, he is exactly what he’s condemning, a dim bulb in a high position, folksy charm, a monster, a little jokes, self deprecating or you deprecating, Power In The Era Of Post Human Capitalism, getting banned from YouTube, an echo chamber, the joke is on him, they all bought it, “right wing”, “left wing”, we just do our best, it may be, humour is crucial to that, being able to discuss a subject you have no power over, you have pain, what can you do about it, relief against pain is having a good laugh with your brothers, you’re sick, connected to Australian politics, fucked up Canadian politics, have an ignorance off, a new party in power, the Labour Party in Australia, centrist, Marine Le Pen, the far right French candidate, a choice between Nazis and a middle that is capitalist realizing us to death, it has to get pretty bad, Macron is a neoliberal, the emergence of independent candidates, teal candidates, blues and greens and reds, environmental disasters, COVID, ideas about energy, renewable sources of energy, the temperature is rising in Australia, we can’t stop coal mining, torn, progressive energy policies, conservative policies, France, the left is muted and not that progressive, the Green Party, social welfare support, free education, renewable energy, an elected senate, appointed by the Queen on advice of the Prime Minster, it’s going to take a lot, majority vs. minority government, a lifetime membership, civil liberties are not important, massively corrupt, a war with nuclear consequences, the biggest cheerleader, brinksmanship, he aint that wise, painting his face, his dad was president (his dad was prime minister), inertia, hugging the leader of the party, keeps that party going, the party of capitalism, we have to live on this planet, NATO has got its hands on stuff, go on a podcast, read a book, talk about that book, encourage guillotine research, start with all the guillotines, it will get out of hand, he hasn’t worked for that newspaper for a long time, quoting Margaret Thatcher, Nancy Pelosi: “we’re all capitalists here”, I go to hotels with my girlfriend, I smoke, I give a speech somewhere, a conscript, performing cunnilingus, is it true you perform cunnilingus?, across the army base, the real concrete problems we see around Europe, what is really going on here?, a joke, talking with, irrational when it comes to some things, Taiwan fighting to the last man against China, no negotiation, irredentism, if Australia was invaded, Mad Max 1 and The Road Warrior, be in that biker gang and talk about the Toecutter, one tank of petrol is about 300 km or 2 hours, intercepting tankers, occupied by another country, you have trade agreements with China or we’re all putting you in concentration camps and gassing you, Ukraine, an Australian version of NATO, WWI, entangling alliances, the war didn’t start in 2022, the shelling of the Donbas, we’re free and fair, Victoria Nuland’s leaked call, this is who’ll we’ll go with, a coup, don’t keep expanding capitalism to eat everything on the planet, Richard K. Morgan’s Market Forces, conflict investment, how to make money from war, literally what happened, a realignment happening, Republicans aiming for the poors, we’re anti-war, $40 billion, the squad, the fake left leaning part of the party, lining their own pockets with taxpayer money, inflation, utter corruption, we need to know what the problem, hence the suicide, delicious sandwich and more jokes, the slow suicide, enjoying his wine too much, published 2018, as you’d expect, he’s reading the newspapers, he’s seeing what is being said, running it through his critical thinking filter, finding falsity there, different from the United States, their propaganda spills out, YouTube, China’s youtube, such weird big films, films set in China, to fit the market, up for another book of his, he has an idea machine gun, spraying the pages, a review from goodreads:

“Zizek moves from subject to subject, not like a ballerina flowing in graceful movements, instead, it is more akin to watching a very fat man who often slurs his words attempting to jump from one stone to the other only to slip and fall miserably-only then preceding to get up and say something that’s actually a rather profound interpretation of a culturally relevant product.”

a really interesting dude, from idea to idea, Black Panther, he’s not a snob, a regular person’s point of view, seeing them for what they are, not every idea is of equal value, really important and profound and world moving, why was it such a big hit?, the CIA’s job is to be there, they’re the heroes, assisting these other countries in Africa, once you start watching a movie with military equipment in it, as much hardware as you want with script approval, bro out, Top Gun, the miltiary base bar, Connor bought a motorcycle because of that movie, Mad Max (1979), Lord Humongous, the sociology of the Mad Max George Miller universe, this is a cult, they’re larping, the world is going to shit, the cops are corrupt, there’s crime on the roads, larpers scaring the old people, hack his own leg off, the whole premise of the movie Saw (2004), a collander on his head, the Smegma Crazies and the Gayboy Berserkers, American football, chest protection, makes you look cool, real life becomes a bit like that, wars in Africa, shit got so crazy, bizarre costume, wigs, horrific shit with genocide and murder, shamanic ritual, the Worker Party, George Galloway, woking everything, what if I told you was a woman?, what if I told you I was seven years old?, everybody is equally willing to let everybody else larp, you do you, let me be, let everyone be, that’s not the end of it, you say you’re a dog, foxkin, Evan’s theory about the Klingons in Star Trek, they stopped doing that stuff and started larping, hitting each other and talking about honor all the time, like Samurai, cut their topknots, cutting fingers off, full body tattoos, cultures in, not breaking kayfabe, pumped up guys throwing each other across the room, put on a display and show, a shirt that says “GENDER”, Toecutter being a very important member of this gang, Billy getting indoctrinated, a social constructionist, a good Parnell and Zizek, more like these please.

Like A Thief In Broad Daylight by Slavoj Zizek

Ghostland by Edward Parnell

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The SFFaudio Podcast #708 – AUDIOBOOK/READALONG: The Wendigo by Algernon Blackwood

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #708 – The Wendigo by Algernon Blackwood; read by Amy Gramour

This unabridged reading of the story (1 hour 59 minutes) is followed by a discussion of it.

Participants in the discussion include Jesse, Paul Weimer, Marissa VU, and Bryan Alexander

Talked about on today’s show:
The Lost Valley and Other Stories, isfdb.org, Famous Fantastic Mysteries, June 1944, great Matt Fox illustrations, canoes, portage, chasin the wendigo, northern minnesota, portedge vs. port-ahhj, defago, a french canadian accent, when you get your canoe out of the lake and walk overland carrying it, Lewis In Clark, they’re northwest passage moment, how non-wendigo-like this wendigo is, The Weird And The Eerie by Mark Fisher, Capitalist Realism, the answer is no, is this story weird or is it eerie?, eerier than it is weird?, that fascination, the pull into the horror, a weird feature, easy to conflate the two, an eerie scene, a weird movie, unusual and strange, eerie is on its own orbit, absence vs. presence, seeing it from near Defago’s pov, witnessing with their nose and ears, super-cool, page 61, a failure of absence or a failure of presence, somebody’s talking but your can’t hear them, the absence of the voice, nested story, five guys, off by himself or with a wendigo, the mystery is what is actually happening to him, Easter sunday, the wendigo is Jesus with his feet of fire, tracks becoming like each other, the transformation stuff, so curious, The Willows, a lot more racist, the characters or the author, onto the author, casually thrown in there, the real mythological wendigo, ideas about how the land is empty, places where no one has ever been, natives all up in these areas, untouched by man, pre-Columbus, controlled burns, managed, untrammeled wilderness, this part of Austria that is completely untouched (since the Roman era), building it up vs. ignorance, hyper-maximialized, wendigo psychosis (phenomena), explanations for what happens when one goes wendigos, the Weird Studies podcast, out of Ontario, an incident in 2008, Portage la Prairie, Manitoba, Edmonton, in the right area, a carnival barker, “Vince” Weiguang Li, creepy pastas, decapitated and displayed a severed head, consuming some flesh, he plead non compos mentis, an article writer was worried that he may have caused it by speaking the word wendigo, magical thinking, people react, yellow blue flag in bio vs. going to Ukraine to join the fight, Stephen King banned one of his own books (because it was tied to school shootings), this is what I’ve been thinking about, the guy was crazy, technical difficulties, the people who lived in this area, an explanation for strange behavior, he went bersark, in times of abundance, the skinwalker, Ravenous (1999), plenitude vs. starvation, the climate change community, a sick society, suddenly your head’s being cut-off, triggered by real information, fight for the good guys, if you had just written that story, have your book in their locker (or at home), guilt and fear, mythological vs. rational, what stars did I change to change reality, an interesting take what the difference is, a lot more like a visit to fairyland, taken away by the fairies, transformed into a changeling, Connor MacLoud was my kinsman, La Belle Dame Sans Merci, the hill is made of the corpses of many many, relish sweet and bitter dew, an essentially cool idea, uninterested, the feet of fire is not in the canon (of the mythology), frostbitten and worn away feet, Algernon Blackwood came to Canada, engaging with the landscape, a ghost story, A Haunted Island, a ghost in the bed, that which has happened or will happen, Accessory Before The Fact, native spirituality or native legend, equally evocative descriptions, listening forest, walking around in the forest, spooky fallen trees, a boat on the lake, being in the woods, is it authentic to any native experience?, a colonialist work, the height of Britain’s imperial power, away from the populace near the U.S. border, Blackwood was fascinated with nature, Arthur Machen, the dramatic power, successive isolation, more and more depopulated, more and more alienated, gorgeous terms, a little more unsettling, the Johnny Cash song, Bryan knows it’s connected, great sentences, the party round the blazing fire, recent moose discovering itself, word turns, musin up the fac, a sulky silence, Punk was washing up the dishes, the stars were brilliant in a sky quite wintry, the silence of the vast listening forest stole forward and enveloped them, no-one troubled to stir it, stealthy ice, a wonderful set of sentences, why Lovecraft likes this, about mood, complex moods vs. complex ideas, companionable silences, structural relationship, being offended, little nothing for the outer story, who’s this narrator, the least communicative character, smart character, the wind comes and stirs up that fire, Edward Bulwer-Lytton’s dark and stormy night, the weather is affecting the people, the landscape turns these people into the things they become, caught up in a spell, an inversion of fake realism, Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer, the climax, please come down, stage setting, stage directions, irrational laugh of horror, distinctly audible, circle of light, stumbling motion, motionless and dumb, withered, violent action, hewn of stone, stricken children, The Blair Witch Project, crunching the frozen snow, measured and pitiless approach, cursed, bends reality, appearances and postcards, distortion of Defago’s body, at length the darkness, terribly conceived, a figure, zone of uncertain light, spasmodic motion of a thing moved by wires, it was a man, a skein of horror, three pairs of eyes shone through it, robots and things, do you think it’s the wendigo?, his feet, something horrible with his feet, something dark and oddly massed where moccasined feet, covered it with a blanket, yanked away, not a normal french name, a bundle of sticks, fire, they replace your baby with something that isn’t your baby, corn dollies, True Detective, stick dollies, Downs syndrome, magical requirements of the spell, a mockery of the man who was taken away, visiting via him, back to the real guy, telepresence, its a puppet, stop motion animation, slightly more jaggy, Simpson watching close behind him, the impression of a mask, black and diabloical, revealed in utter nakedness, biologically inhabited, totally erased, possession, becoming wendigo, trying to start a fire, eaten away from the inside, a matchstick lit from the bottom, gravity, as a phenomenon, literal fire or frostbite, what is the wendigo doing across the landscape, people love to draw the wendigo, an outline, a vague figure, Roof Bear, picking up Coffee Cat, the opposite of warmth, dropping frost, what does the wendigo eat, it eats moss, moose, the moose is hunting them, the spirit of winter, the spirit of the land, uninhabited because of how harsh it is, the moose finds them, why it has horns, human scale, antlers, Cernunnos, the deer/elk god of Celtic mythology, the hunt, a hunting expedition

When Did I Go? by Jesse:
My hike through the subarctic foothills that summer suddenly turned sinister when the bridge I had meant to cross was suddenly washed out by a late spring flood.

I’d begun my trek west through northern Alberta and into its border in the North-West Territories in late May, back when my skin was sallow, and my hair short.

Now, in late June, my hair was in my eyes as I thought I should return to that last homely shack I’d seen, the one with the collapsed verandah, just thirteen kilometers back.

My feet felt hot as I turned on the trail where the three lonely larches had turned a lovely and sickly green, that shack held nothing, nothing but a history, a history of this lonely landscape, as it was perfectly placed to shelter me and my needs.

And as I approached the sagging shanty I noticed again that broken sign on the trail’s bed, flipped it over, saw a new growth of lichen had obscured a few of the obscene words scrawled upon its pitted surface.

As I read the words aloud to myself and the wind under those familiar twilight stars I began my hysterical laughter: “Yukon run, butt chew can’t hide from the THING inside” it read.

And as I threw the sign to my feet and crawled under that broken and redolent verandah into what was once my home, I smiled, cracked open my preserves, and began feasting on the salted man-meat I’d made on my last trip through.

THE END

stealing a little, the unconscious, explaining why people do things is hard, explicit, we have a theory, this is the wendigo, how do we know?, feeling hysterical, went out for a pee, the outer narration is very unsympathetic, he’s cheating, the landscape, somebody’s mouse, a companion sentence, the personification of inanimate things, the landscape is doing something for our experience, scent and smell, what he smells like, the wendigo smells acrid, like lion, musky, lions don’t eat moss, like a living animal, off by 7, food and fire, inwardness, “something he called a wendigo”, mental excitement, that extraordinary odour, pungent, 50 Island Water, a foolish avowal, the preposterous language, an exact miniature likeness, a wholly incredible distance, the fiery tinge in the snow, hesitant on the one and sure on the other, I’m in my right mind now, steam?, char?, burnt off, stumps, do we even see?, lying and concealing, the effect upon the reader, H.P. Lovecraft, its surrogate, you see it by its scent, its effect in the ground, tracks leading through a field, up into the sky, on the treetops, Johnny Cash’s Ring Of Fire, a religious and sexual vision, covers, down down down I went, mythic ring, not quite as awesome as The Willows, Mr Jim Moon, “the ghost man”, the British love their ghost stories, a Christmas tradition, M.R. James, Henry James, a nested narrative, people going away from civilization into the wild, into a Canadian canoe, birch bark canoe, so light, so lovely, make one?, a skin of birch, chopping, marking the trees, so I can find my way back, Hansel and Gretel, blazing the trees, a nice pun, it’s going to hear me, structured, 5 to 2 to 1, 1 to 2 to 5, like the Apollo missions, that style of a story, Operation Black Buck, the Falkland Island War, the fuel planes refueling each other, such a massive distance, this expedition into the wilderness, an telescoping antenna, what was in contact, as it collapses back down, that story structure, how did he manage to do it just this well, an extraordinarily good story, an oblique angle, public domain stories, what responsibility in republishing a public domain story, the PDF Page, Wayne June read a story by Lovecraft, Mr. Niggerman vs. Mr. Blackman, The Rats In The Walls, Jesse’s responsibility, directly offended, present reality as it is as it was, fix history by taking out the icky bits, a terrific story, people’s fixations change, some words are taboo, those words have been replaced, earliest publications whenever possible, taking out illustrations, see the original context, William Wilson by Edgar Allan Poe, there’s a joke in the first line that tells you, The Gift, “In the present volume”, taking out information or lying, the racist character or the racist author, replacing Nigger Jim with Robot Jim, not everybody starts in a position of complete knowledge, this particular story, the n-word popping up, the turd in the punchbowl, thrown in here randomly (seemingly),

He watched the men a moment longer before diving into the stuffy tent where Simpson already slept soundly. Hank, he saw, was swearing like a mad African in a New York nigger saloon; but it was the swearing of “affection.” The ridiculous oaths flew freely now that the cause of their obstruction was asleep. Presently he put his arm almost tenderly upon his comrade’s shoulder, and they moved off together into the shadows where their tent stood faintly glimmering.

the progressive era was the most racist point in American history, meet up in Burlington, struck by the senses, key plot points, the conclusion ends on sense, “He knew what it all meant. Défago had ‘seen the Wendigo.'”, is sound the only trustworthy sense in the story, this is a cube, put in my hand, a scent can be mysterious, pulp mill towns, Thunder Bay, if you live there you don’t notice it, smell is literally invisible, desensitized to it, no need to present this to the brain, hearing a sentence, sight is something we question, smell is less reliable than hearing, sight is more reliable than hearing and scent, putting it in your hand is the most reliable, manuscript found in a bottle, we’re physically holding it, what we’re left with, reversing the human experience, sight and sound, because we don’t have the embedded, me our your lying eyes, we might have a verbal agreement, might hold up in court, send me a fax with your signature on it, makes it real, hearsay, I had a whiff that he was a serial killer, undergrad English majors to lawyers, Nunavut territory hunt, Paul comes back with an armful of fish, the senses are crucial, the unreality of this story, by eating the liver of a polar bear, ecological literary criticism, vegan diet, killing and living on animals, death by starvation, that dependence, “He realized his own utter helplessness. Only Défago, as a symbol of a distant civilization where man was master, stood between him and a pitiless death by exhaustion and starvation.”, the wood, there to eat, an emblem of community’s starvation or too much food, getting the right amount of food to live on, insatiable greed hungry excess, gluttony greed and excess, Blackwood out hunting and canoeing, a leftover from the coureur de bois era, Punk is a crazy name, Tonto, Vivian, a UK name, a boy named Sue, back to Johnny Cash, turnabout is fairplay, poor Marissa, Jesse, Paul, and Bryan, how bad Vermont internet was, what is our duty?, in podcasting terms, in fifty years what are people going to want to have from this podcast?, to understand us better, the latest Dan Carlin podcast interview, Hardcore History Addendum, when a war is happening today, Ukraine, how will people fifty years from now understand us better, Edgar Allan Poe, in the year 18__, be as faithful and understanding as you can, the long tail of the audience, the tail is much longer than that first week, 70 years late would be fine, a perishable age, all your DMs are going to be destroyed, all the ephemeral messages, text chats, podcast resilient, what happened to all the blogs?, the revised manuscript for his new book, possible extinction of the human race, a great conversation, cell phone as a hotspot, a good trick, why does Vermont internet suck so much, for profit telcos, repeated screwups, terrain, lots and lots of woods, small mountains, the wendigo interfering with our podcasts, a bad internet weather day, Elon Musk satellite internet, moving into the forest, pre-Starlink satellite internet, Starlink sent to Ukraine, 2g speed with Russian forces, Crimea, re-annexation, support for Assad in Syria, implausible, Strawberry Spring, Everything’s Eventual, a Spingheeled Jack story, an eerie phenomenon, peak up, the basketball game experiment, if you could only have one author on a desert island, Lawrence Block, re-read and find new things, Gene Wolfe, Cavalier, you can buy Hugo awards on ebay, No-Man’s Land, Uluru, it belongs in a museum!, heist story in which plucky band of wokesters steals all the stuff from the British museum and give them back, cynical Cirsova guy, ladies need eyebrows, the Elgin marbles, Greece is in such, privileging nation states, totem poles in England, trophies, the obelisk, the duly elected government, Aswan Dam, future us’ problem, claims lose power over time, shipping stuff back, without context, “here are the Elgin marbles, ha!”, a thorny problem, when Greece takes Big Ben, the Mexicans who now run England (with Russian accents), Jesse’s mom is moving, Vancouver Island is for retired people, YouTube photographers, videos, Amanda and Gavin, YouTubers tubing together, Nova Scotia is cheaper, seeing icebergs, an Israeli 7.62, Shaun Duke.

Lynd Ward art for The Wendigo

Lynd Ward art for The Wendigo

The Wendigo art by Matt Fox from FAMOUS FANTASTIC MYSTERIES

The Wendigo art by Matt Fox from FAMOUS FANTASTIC MYSTERIES

Wendigo - frequency: Unique - from Dragon Magazine, issue 38

Roof Bear, Coffee Cat, Wendigo

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The SFFaudio Podcast #677 – READALONG: The Weird And The Eerie by Mark Fisher

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #677 – Jesse and Connor Kaye talk about The Weird And The Eerie by Mark Fisher

Talked about on today’s show:
Capitalist Realism, Connor’s suggestion, Watcher By The Threshold by John Buchan, The Willows by Algernon Blackwood is both weird and eerie, column of souls, an intrusion from outside, an otter or a man, an absence as opposed to a presence, what is vs. what isn’t there, a sense of agency, a force, an important distinction, building a concept on top, involving agency, Connor’s essay on folk horror, a disconnection between us, it meant something to somebody but it doesn’t mean that to us, disconnection through time, Stonehenge, folk horror is an eerie genre not a weird genre, a very interesting book, a David Lynch movie, Twin Peaks, seen most of the movies, heard none of the music, this book presented itself, the new chapter, that’s eerie, following a similar path (and seeing his life path ending), a despairing: Is There Any Alternative?, Blue Velvet (1986), is this weird or ear-y?, a sock on the side of a road, clothing or shoes, Spike Jonze’s How They Get There (1997), something curious vs. something eerie, sounds vs. manifestations, interchangeable, synonyms, Ghost Stories, Strange Stories, there’s something the name, Analog vs. Astounding, weird seems more common than eerie, a misunderstanding, weird interactions in your daily life, unusual and eerie are not really synonyms, its hard to create the sense of eeriness, shocking is easier, he wrote it after he’s dead, radical narrative modes, transcendental shock, de-centering the human subject, denaturalizing, Picnic At Hanging Rock (1975), Brian Eno, The Fall, Under The Skin (2013), better without the explanation, eeriness, its weird as well, Annihilation (2018), I’m watching this Russian movie with bad translation, the Andrei Tarkovsky movies, like 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) with a foreign language, Siberia, make so coffee?, no just sit there, Dwayne Johnson, in a garbage mood (when you’re sick), when you’re ready and you’ve trained yourself, unusual if not weird, have the right expectations, what the hell is this?, Scarlett Johansson may be an alien, understand what you’re seeing, appreciate the atmosphere, concretize, Nigel Kneale Quatermass And The Pit (1967), the colour adaptation, a subway tunnel they find an unexploded bomb and apemen scientist, weirdness with science fiction, dispelling the eeriness, Quatermass and a lady, breathing heavily and staring off, the importance of the human spirit, ending with a purge, an unconscious memory (programming), ape men with weird heads is unusual, government pressure to reopen the station, Professor Quatermass, your civilian rocket program is a military program, Colonel Breen, a German propaganda weapon, meta-evidence, the area had been haunted for centuries, eerie phenomena explainable by what’s buried beneath Hobb’s End, aliens from Mars, we are their descendants, psychic stuff, we can infer it was science based, what the Martians were doing on their planet and what we were doing to ourselves, a program of exploration, othering the enemy, a political movie, very Doctor Who-like, stuff is happening and we might get a quasi-explanation for it, why Data disappeared, offering a meta-question, a connection in Mark Fisher’s brain, transcendental shock, we might need to despair, capitalism eats it up, seeing Mark Fisher’s stuff everywhere, AOC’s TAX THE RICH dress, a masked servant, once you see it it is hard to unsee it, commodifying the resistance to commodifying, the “Squad”, we need to create a “ruckus”, an unannounced event with staffers, Nancy Pelosi, a fake protest (a protest with permission from you boss), “mamma bear”, the appearance of change, those evil Republicans, performance rather than action, vote for the Speaker of the House (“force the vote”), the Canadian Federal Election 2021, they’ve always had a plan and that plan is to say they have a plan, different reasons for being for the pipeline, we wanna work on it, we don’t want to talk about it, the corruption isn’t unknown, the other team is more corrupt so we can’t do anything about it, apathy, stupor, I hate the people you hate, there are a lot of people in this country worthy of hate and you know who you are, Margaret Thatcher’s pro-market slogan “There Is No Alternative”, engaged with modern philosopher’s, Slavoj Žižek, Jacques Derrida, organic, the sentiment, the vibe of the thing, a tough book to read during lockdown working from home, music points, rebellion was commodified in music, Rage Against The Machine, a product sold for money, made ingenuine even if made from a genuine place, if Mao Zedong suddenly got popular, Che t-shirts, Lovecraft, a tweet from the Snickers account about student debt, Nihilist Arby’s tweets, nothing matters, eat Arby’s, Moonpie twitter, unemployed English grads, a billionaire in Scotland got it all locked up, smart people forced to sell shit, temporarily embarrassed millionaires, an elite class, a useless piece of paper in exchange, bone spurs, the sensitivity, AOC’s team, just a way to boost your brand, Snickers can’t sympathize, there’s no escape, you haven’t hung yourself yet, The Parallax View (1974), go live in the woods, drop out, a dirt floor, a quad bike, how to escape running Snickers twitter account, not in the marriage market, women tend to like to have linoleum floors, no need for a Roomba, lucking through life, parents don’t understand, the commodification of education, artificial barriers, to communicate difficult truths requires the right mindset, they need to be eat and be warm, shooting a film, wilderness in the UK, looking at the landscape, the Romantic poets, they experienced things, a nice short book, some connection between the sensitivity of certain people, he’s really sensitive to stuff, H.P. Lovecraft and Philip K. Dick are connected in a way that is not obvious, Time Out Of Joint, Lovecraft stories are generally weird (not eerie), poverty in the country, Australia is vast, an enclave surrounded by thousands of kilometers of no people, compared to England, depopulated vs. unpopulated, left behind, I can just live here, you have to build up capital, the story of us all, Connor’s cohort moved away, capital demands that you move, a mobile society, you have to move, deep connections, is choice real?, its not that Quatermass wants to kill all the people around him its just that’s what humans do, memory transmissions or activation, are those the ones we must kill?, everybody is on team lynch, The Hanging Stranger by Philip K. Dick, Invasion Of The Body Snatchers, capital is an eerie concept conjured from nothing and it directs everything (its the invisible hand), shadowy, the way it influences people is eerie, The Red Riding trilogy, who kills him?, the opening scene, the Space Needle, Seattle, a parade, a politician on a float, glad-handing, assassination, an assassin for the assassin, JFK’s assassination, Oswald and Ruby, I’m a patsy, lots and lots of evidence that the official story is bullshit, forty minutes into the movie, Hobbs And Shaw (2019) is garbage, there is no other responsible party he can turn to, deceiving the cops, its almost like this movie is about science, papers on Ivermectin’s use for treatment of covid, we have to do our own investigations, subject to the capitalist forces all around us, the tenuous connections as seen in the film, what it is a good movie (it allows participation by the viewer), when he deceives his handler, a snipe hunt to Hawaii, the guy who was driving the politician, what makes it weird or eerie is it is an unusual even that is difficult to replicate, meat robots with computers in our heads, a strong (non obvious connection), vaccines and the eeriness of capital, motivated by gaining capital, corporations are free floating motivation, ally yourself with a corporate team, a strong impulse, countries outside of the system like Cuba is making vaccines too, selling off our infrastructure and talent, one of the weirdest things: health Canada name changes for vaccines, a banding exercise, Washington Redskins, if you a person with principles you will do badly under capitalism, capitalism needs flexibility from its workers, a class of people who live on rent from other people, and a class of people who live on rent from investment, bitcoin mining, if you are willing to compromise your principles capitalism is for you, left behind or forgotten, make this a hypothetical, a continual drive to do more with less, people are lining up to be exploited, Ernst & Young, exploited, behind the scenes, everyone wants to be the person noticed, coercive, you’re not a company man, more overtime, how that effects the modern family, one of the national, the Liberal federal government (in Canada) and the NDP provincial government, early cheaper childcare, we have institutions for that, what the fuck went wrong?, is there a bottom to this?, the French revolution, the food problem vs. the housing problem, students in his classroom, a kid was wearing headphones in class, a confabulated story, the real answer is the thesis of his book, i can’t even hear it, I am that guy and I know those kids, Jesse is a weird guy, bone conduction headphones, do two podcasts a week, an excuse to hide what Jesse’s really afraid of, students can’t read sentences because they’re boring, I’m not allowed to play computer games, girls have it easier for school, give him a sword and throw him into a war, built into us as creatures, programmed into us, wealthy kids or adopted by wealthy people, exposure to the classics of literature, there are people who buy books, most people don’t read at all, the way people interact with words, words as symbols, word pictures, resistant to hashtags, the value of hashtags is irony, hashtags are a great way to punctuate a joke, using hashtags unironically is scary, more difficulty focusing, in his own writing, Weird Al Yankovic, intellectual stimulation, radio from the 1970s, we have instant access to whatever kind of streaming we want, you can do images on twitter, what’s the appeal of Instagram, twitter threads, removing capitals or adding punctuation or the clap emoji, taking in words through their eyes, bad spelling on youtube comments, why should they be ashamed?, twitter doesn’t need an edit button, gaslit all the time?, everything goes down the memory hole, the PDF Page was down for three weeks, being lied to about what the reality was, OCR, people change things over the years, this was that, an anthology of stories from different authors, the skeleton of the thing rather than the thing itself, the editorial introduction can sometimes tell you how to read, reality is slippery enough as it is, no one has time to read these classic works of literature, books written to be book length, filler and examples, the school industry, audible audiobooks, fetishizing reading, H.P. Podcraft is essentially a story summary podcast, Jesse doesn’t summarize stories, talking about The Outsider by H.P. Lovecraft, Surfacing by Margaret Atwood, Oryx And Crake, the argument Jesse makes to himself, an independent senator is shot, some other guy is shot, what kind of movie is it?, a crazy movie, these guys were indicted, it connects up, enter the contest, a core idea, the eerie events that happen with the film are all agented but not explained, innocuous events leading to innocuous events leading to unusual events, inferring there’s a bomb on the plane, this is the scientific process, your life my depend on a hypothesis, once we put our ideas out there that’s science, a consensus as to what was an wasn’t a good movie, a relatively new magazine, classic stories, technical objection, classic fiction from 2020?, we have some reprints too, the word “classic” is to bootstrap more sales, truth had value at one point, lying is something we think is bad because it interferes with our understanding with reality, what makes it true is that it has been tested and tested and tested over time, realism, what’s really happening?, what lie are we telling ourselves?, deep down you know it is a falsehood, sometimes it is genuine merit, some people have an ability to be productive, nepotism, how hard you seem to be working, Paul’s job, what happens, giving someone a promotion can create another problem, teachers grading themselves, outsourcing the job, whose the best shot in the unit?, teaching essay writing to grade 3 kids, eight year olds can’t write essays, judging essays, the factory Maoist element, what matters is they’re always making some improvement, make the writing fun for you, hauntology, Mr Jim Moon could be a BBC all by himself, defining people’s view of the present, 2022 is haunted by the past image of 2022, Back To The Future (1985), where’s my flying car?, we’re gonna be on Mars, optimism crumbling to pessimism, Jesse lived in a pirate town, the reason Star Wars (1977) looks the way it does is the WWII imagery, Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon, we’re haunted by the endless Star Wars, the VHS tapes and constant broadcasts on HBO damaged us, The Tempest by Willy Shakes, a live performance, professional actors, 400 years of performances are gone and snuffed out, we can watch Ant Man (2015) over and over and over again, the new technology, capitalism’s virus is infecting us the way it wasn’t before, where’s the Jesse?, a treatment for immortality that requires you to delete your personality, Elidor by Alan Garner, Among Others by Jo Walton, media engagement, oral and visual cultures lecturer, drawing connections and creating a larger picture, a whitish name, math and chemistry tutoring, trained to study, a phone shapes a kid, playing games all night or watching streams, computer or video games are better than reading, sleep hygiene, it has only become more relevant, the repetition of culture, What Is Hauntology? by Mark Fisher, the way neoliberalism tends to reproduce rather than promote novelty, having real estate in somebody’s head is capital, how many TV shows exist now? 540 scripted English language TV shows, primetime, 3 hours a night for scripted TV, how is it that we’ve come to be able to support a larger number of scripted TV shows?, we’ve colonized people’s brains, there’s more people, with streaming you can have more than would fit on a channel, ABC 1 and 2, reruns in primetime, the original Star Trek, 700 Star Trek episodes, Netflix might be running a scam, there’s no independent auditing, a tulip inflation thing, now there’s all these shows and I can’t trust the reviews, IMBD is not trustworthy, what is valuable now is honesty about what’s worth your time, we’ve reversed our interaction with reality, blogs don’t exist anymore, blogging has turned into videos, how he became famous, a revise feature on Twitter, google street view through archiving, the difficulty of the world we live in now, how Connor got into early podcasts, new releases/recent arrivals, be the thing you want to see in the world, off the cuff thinking, chunks of words, people read that way, construct information just from hashtags, a symbol that conveys a bunch of information, at the beginning of the web, a spinning gif, engaging through apps, the difference between apps and programs, Jesse doesn’t ask for feedback, a serious storm, if you ask for things you get it, soliciting comments, when things go wrong, what people like about the podcast, stuff where we go off topic, a weird catchup at the start of podcasts, ideas in science fiction, through characters (people who wrote those books), Isaac Asimov is more like an encyclopedia, Philip K. Dick will definitely hit on my wife, there’s no such real thing as going off topic, why Joe Rogan is popular, leading to interested places, the after show and the pre-show as extra material, Reading, Short And Deep is popular but has fewer downloads, older people enjoy the shorter format show, a little breathing room, everything is relevant even tangentially, its important to not overthink what people don’t tell you about, issue both praise and criticism, you can trust me and I can trust me, comics reviews, goddamn this art is so good, Providence by Jacen Burrows and Alan Moore, a deep passion in two directions, we should call out the crappy things, this show will be out in seven months, when shownoting later, wait six months and see how you feel, when 9/11, a cathode ray tube, “this is not going to go well”, they’re not going to do this right, see how politicians voted, what they said back then, keeping a consistency of character over a long period of time is the opposite of gaslighting, at what point in a movie do you say this is fucked I’m out of here?, if they don’t care why do I care?, a new world parrot in Europe in 1300, a set dresser or somebody didn’t care, the only reason they do things is: squeeze more money (out of this product in your head), things are becoming more generic, 5 Spider-Man reboots, way more weird movies, an independent weird fiction movie The Endless (2017), shitty capitalist jobs, Heaven’s Gate cult, Algernon Blackwood’s The Willows, time relations, he’s really saying something, a shopping list, its our job to find the three things and say this is what you want, I am satisfied with the work, click a like button or rate out of five, iTunes reviews, the ratings are all gamed, fake followers, movies have incredible interest in doing this, Netflix’s rating system, a mini-scandal, manipulating you to trey to engage more, an existential movie disguised as a political thriller, The Stone Tape (1972), the reveal at the end, the way they portrayed the entity within the stones, Nigel Kneale has got the goods, real science fiction, an unlikable character but more real as a human being, Quatermass (1979), a millenarian end of the world, difficult concepts, they’re actually about the same thing, information within unalive objects, things that are dead, nothing is alive, somethings that are dead are temporarily alive, things that are locked inside, skulls, relics from five million years ago, there’s nothing alive there, in this race to compete, L. Ron Hubbard’s Scientology, trauma in our own lives, go clear, wouldn’t this be interesting?, why are we doing that? for reasons., there is no alternative, both of them start from a supernatural perspective, what mark Fisher is doing too, on the periphery of reality, I wasn’t doing this ironically, you don’t know what you’re doing, if you are a person who stood by principle you couldn’t have got in that position (or if you do what happens?), the company exists, who or what is running the company, somebody could do this, A Clockwork Orange (1971), that’s not a lie that’s a metaphor, people are subscribed to the Snickers account, the central argument of capitalist realism, is there any alternative?, a comedy thesis that could be true, the public square, gravity [monopoly], you’re a part of the system, Aaron Swartz, Unauthorized Bread by Cory Doctorow, Case from Neuromancer, creative commons, RSS, out from behind a paywall, blogs were killed, youtube, twitter, blogs, podcasts are the only thing that is left that is independent, Spotify, Audible has a podcast reader, the iPod and the ability to look for podcast submitted to iTunes, claim your podcast, just break the connection between the independent people, before Facebook there was MySpace, sharecropper, they killed this kid, Julian Assange, rentseeking, Jstor, he contributed so much to modern internet technology, not playing by the rules, not a billionaire and so he’s dead, writing about places you’ve never been, you don’t know how they go through a doorway, where does he plug in his iPhone, modern fantasy novels are Dungeons & Dragons, worldbuilding, when electricity came into being, how can you possibly teach me anything if the basic things you’re telling me are already wrong, does A Game Of Thrones have Earth’s Moon, a lot of nudity to distract us, a picture of Scott with George R.R. Martin, a floppy disk camera, the entourage of women, the con suite party, The Mystery Of Sylmare by Hugh Irish, Irish hue would be green, The Wind In The Willows by Kenneth Grahame, a fable with humans being the animals, a whisper version of The Wind In The Willows on Librivox, just a sex thing, proof listening, Wayne June, reading Edgar Allan Poe is way easier, a cosmicism poem for Reading, Short And Deep, one of the bests little sections, The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, free as in speech or free as in beer?, gratis vs. libre, a good name for a political party: The Guillotine Party, all the billionaires get the chop but they all get ice cream, Elon Musk is last in line, we start from a position of guillotining everybody, when we get somebody up on the debate stage, the A.I. Party, we’ve tried the humans in charge and it isn’t working out, don’t let the Dems and the Repubs set the parameters for the debate, we kinda need a hardass, when Trump got kicked off twitter but was still president, these are all cops.

The Weird And The Eerie by Mark Fisher

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The SFFaudio Podcast #670 – READALONG: The Troop by Nick Cutter

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #670 – Jesse, Evan Lampe, and Connor Kaye talk about The Troop by Nick Cutter

Talked about on today’s show:
Craig Davidson, 2014, body horror, you should read this, Farmer In The Sky, the Boy Scouts thing, sample, 1938 editorials, 1920s magazine formatting, dismissive of modern fiction, something to this book, Mr. Jim Moon, Marissa VU, why did Connor agree to do this book, pretty hookable, the worms got in your brain, the Stephen King quote, Jonathan Maberry, a book stands on its own, EarthCore by Scott Sigler, serialized podcast novel, competent, big evil corporation, bigger books now, he can almost make a living, Jesse’s on a rant, 4000 reviews vs. 16,000 reviews, not in the gutter, for the mainstreams, not targeted at Jesse, paperback mainstream horror market, Clive Barker, Stephen King,enjoy vs. get the ride, kind of sickening on purpose, Hellraiser (1987), scary cenobites, Cabin Fever (2002), am I supposed to want all these people to die?, top reviews, a big yawn, somebody’s jaded, “fuck this book” (rated five stars), a lot of gifs in people’s reviews, Goodreads as a social media, only 80 pages in, ridicule the fat kid, what kids do, the fat shaming of the fat kid, no women in this book, make the Doctor a woman, give her agency, a zombie book, a wendigo tale in a way, get the Algernon Blackwood out, a zombie apocalypse with 5 boys on an island, weird news website, “Cheeseburger Kills Space Alien”, worldbuilding for what’s happening and what will come, Evan is reading everything King wrote, influenced by King’s Carrie, global, Evan’s YouTube channel, Dreamcatcher, that Shelly character, It by Stephen King, backstory, that stage of life, comparing to King, any story with 4 boys in it is compared to The Body or It, Ephraim, a thrill junkie, heavy on the character, I’m reading that book you gave me, I wanna see all of these boys die, develop suspense, a novel designed to be a novel, as opposed to a story, a booklength study, what about the mainland?, Starvin’ Marvin, an incredibly well done paint by numbers, why is this all happening, sustaining of a certain mood, Lovecraft’s payoffs, the communication about a certain way of seeing reality, 11 hours, similes, endless similes, how something smells, Nick Cutter’s favourite thing is the smell of something, this book is about hitting you in the fears, such a common feeling, is that hunger something deeper?, throw in a psychopath, this isn’t a true story, Nick and Cutter I should have seen it coming, the appeal, ticking off a powerful fear, making comparisons to Mengele, Herbert West Re-Animator, a lab leak book, that weight loss drug, thinspiration!, eat whatever you want!, the background stuff, how did this all happen, is it fully contained?, why it appeals as movie (a built in ending), spending 11 hours with 14 year olds, Lord Of The Flies by William Golding, set during WWIII, the psychology of a bunch of boys on an island, a sick book, why are we pushing THIS book, The Walking Dead, reduced to crazy brutal violent hierarchical social relations, people being shitty to each other, the history of people in crisis and society in crisis, that [Thomas] Hobbesian world, Walking Dead: The World Beyond, a high school drama, we’re told they’re smart, they say smart things, a regular high school drama set in zombieworld, trying on a series of how to live together, they’re primitive communists, drama happens, canned food 10 years after the zombie apocalypse, a planetary crisis about to happen, the least interesting set of kids, Jesse’s not learning anything from it, the cover up, the lab leak, the former head of the CDC, not a wet-market story, it happens, a town known for doing this, Fauci testifying, Rand Paul, there is a cover up going on, they’re doing it because they want to develop weapons, the doctor as a scapegoat, GQ, worms are really tough, Max Kirkwood, these interstices bits, Alex Markson, Nick Cutter knows how to write, what are we really getting?, the weight loss drug, violence towards animals, a vegan interpretation of this, where it connects, am I the only one bothered by the graphic animal abuse scenes, essential to your dinner, I’m made out of meat, where we are, gooseberries want to be eaten but not too much, there’s a war, poisons and thorns, that’s just the plants, your hot dog didn’t want to be eaten it lived on a farm somewhere, we get old, we get feeble, we get infections, so smooth, why do I need this reminder?, why do they need this reminder?, rollercoasters, trying to eat the turtle, the vegan message, the anti-factory farming message?, having to slaughter animals, where the meat comes from, Boy Scouts, a simulation, he doesn’t do anything with it, Boy Scouting gear, the belt pouch, the sash with all the achievements, swearing allegiance to the queen and to god?, soldiers shooting the kid, Scouts during WWI, quasi militaristic, jamboreeing with, the meat-grinder that is WWI, ribbons, making new uniforms and grave signs, bullets and bombs and aircraft, there’s a lesson, it sucks to be ground up into chow, when politicians tell me about WWI, it made us into a country, this is not propaganda at all, its nothing, there’s no message, experiences, interesting scene here, interesting scene there, the ending when Max goes back to the island, what the book was about, he felt a hunger inside, Chapter 50, Falstaff Island, all the similes, the sterile chlorine smell of a public pool, a nameless hunger, with teeth that called his name, forever changed by this experience, a cop-out of an ending vs. the experiences have opened his eyes to the horror of reality, what is he going back to the island for?, the way he had to end it, what did I read this book for, Jason or Freddy Kruger?, the amazing worm boy strikes again, a lot of bullying in this book, the surgery, it needed to happen (technically), needing to establish the worm is inside them, what it looks like, sore throats and hangnails, the doctor scoutmaster, the parental figure becomes helpless, it works, you’ve seen horror movies, a horror movie trope, its a recipe, this is a real message, Poe lingers over the disgusting, big pile guts fall, some kid is cutting on his arm, pull a guy’s scalp off, go for the gross-out, horror, terror, the loving depiction of the gross out, Hannibal Lector, sauteing a guy’s brain and feeding it to him, its something to do, the medical scene in The Exorcist (1973), the vegan interpretation again, page 169, devourer vs. conqueror worms, the non-island boys part, hydatid infestation, subject is… “the window period the window period”, The Conqueror Worm by Edgar Allan Poe, highly interpretable, all sorts of things (not all of them involving pizza), seize it not, horror the soul of the plot, we are our own worst enemy, a horror show, in human gore imbued, the play is the tragedy Man, all these diseases we’re getting, I’m eating food made of meat, its kind of gross, you shouldn’t exist, you gonna get infected, is there nothing more substantial here, the whole appeal of body horror, a Lovecraftian element, a thing from outside we can use as a metaphor, fear to sleep, I wanna go to the doctor and get de-wormed, I don’t wanna watch the video, too horrific, Hellraiser is a cool story, outer forces, without the snippets, it would appear to them be supernatural, the surgery and knowing, just a description of what’s happening, The Colour Out Of Space is kinda sad an disgusting, when the speedboat gets taken down by the military, on the inside looking out at things you don’t understand, Pontypool (2008), a zombie movie with words, set in a radio station, The Night Wire by H.F. Arnold, The Mist by Stephen King, start it with chapter 10, wonderful horrible, the interstices reassure you that the body horror is cleaner, just enjoy the infection rather than what causes the infection, a virus, a covid book, its in your meat, its swimming behind your eyes, something inside your head telling your what to do, see the infection spread, lampshade it as much as you want, you need to have that infection spread, a cosmic fear, its just a plain-old infection, cutting into himself, I don’t watch Star Trek for the phaser fights, phaser fights are stuff to do, The Strain, worms are kinda gross, low hanging fruit, tapeworms and what they can do, get a rise out of your fellow campers, emotionally manipulating other people as a way of being, infecting themselves with tapeworms to loose weight, extreme measures, he dwells on it, mundane and popular, a pharmaceutical leak, something not in the audiobook, the acknowledgements, you may have something here, Kickass Kirby Kim, we could possibly have something here, we may just have something here, Thestomax, Carrie was a great inspiration, borrow, steal, Carrie‘s chassis, honor the master, he named his kid after his pseudonym, he’s eating for a family now, just a scary scary book, tapeworms are disgusting, throughout nature, they’re everywhere, a very good book about visceral gross-out, it weighs a certain amount of grams, a cheeseburger of a book, The Midnight Meat Train (2008), CHUD movies, people in the underground interacting with people in the overground, a weird tales as a body horror, the imagery, helping the baby turtles into the ocean, it doesn’t have a message, The Thing (1982), a cosmic-ness to that body horror, its all what it is, the whole military angle, the pharmaceutical industry, it doesn’t pay off, the government cover-up, an end of the world movie where they spend a lot of time looking at people watching TV, reaction videos on YouTube, to manipulate emotion vs. giving understanding, why aren’t the Americans in on this, Canada doesn’t have any Apache helicopters, he takes order from…, he’s taking orders from the bug inside him, a technically good book with almost nothing in it, The Lord Of The Flies, they turn to Satan, kids will turn on each other, people will, its all on the island, its all about what’s happening on the island, if you don’t notice it, On The Beach by Nevil Shute, Tomorrow, When The War Began by John Marsden, a military experiment, other lab leak books, The Stand, where did this other funding come from?, when Fauci is funding the Wuhan lab, my bureaucracy, my scientists want to do it but more importantly it expands my empire, we have this money, back to P.E.I. proper, hiding some information, make it eerie, he needs to put that stuff in there, this is not a horror movie of the Freddy Kruger kind it is a mundane horror, what the adults have done, not participating in the book, Gregory Peck, Ava Gardner, the banality of a pharmaceutical greed and superficiality, the antithesis of beauty is body horror, literally a lampshade, the inner views of what people are thinking, the lurking voice in the background, videogames on rails, you’re subject, no room for you, spoonfed to you, with Stephen King there’s space to mull, coming from the unconscious vs. coming from the conscious, why is The Thing more horrifying, a pretty damn good book, hitting all the right points, there’s no heft, you don’t carry it with you when you’re done, how is this book supposed to be received, Stephen King has something niggling inside him, other books, The Deep, Rust And Bone, to promote his book, steroids and boxing matches, Evan doesn’t care that much about promoting his podcast, a 16 week steroid cycle, a Toronto poet, something Hemingway would do, Daniel Day-Lewis, very method, examined the field, replicate the effect he is going for, The Violin And The Void, rank all your books by ranking them against other books you’ve read, ranking your books, SABCDEF rankings, always talking about Neuromancer, ways of ranking things, not substantial, a well done exercise in body horror, The Hellbound Heart by Clive Barker, we could be done, it wasn’t the worst book I’ve ever read, compared to Farmer In The Sky, it didn’t have to be boy scouts, boy scout values, redeeming the surgery scene, he has a message there, the adults are prominent in memory, the characterization is really good, the misunderstood fat kid, Newton, Kent the jock, the psychology is very solid, why it exists, body horror has a limit, vegans bring that to the table, the brutality of survival, they don’t even eat the turtle, they give it to Satan, look at these boys, nobody has learned anything, a wendigo tale in a modern environment, Ravenous (1999), comedy, comic aspects, boing sound effects, juxtaposition, a good wendigo story, drawing on the folklore of the wendigo, the gluttonous wendigo, not a hint of wendigo, he’s only thinking about tapeworms, in conjunction with the pharmaceutical weight loss, drugs turn yourself on turn yourself off, the two pill solution, back stories help a little bit, it doesn’t deliver on some agenda that the author has, no agendas in their pulp fiction, naive, having an agenda makes for potentially interesting stuff, Tolkien has an agenda, there’s no politics, there’s nothing we can do with this information, we really got to stop eating tapeworms, drive to create products, technically a very horrible book, Evan has a statement, negative reviews on Goodreads, offended by this book existing, body horror is nature, no one warned me before I picked up this book, what do people want in books?, if you want a happy ending don’t read body horror, a kick out of horror, a good book and Connor enjoyed reading it, Saw (2004) is one of the best horror movies ever, the consequences of wanting to live, walking around in Shelly’s skin is disgusting, not having principles, voting for Biden = bombing kids, getting a boner for most of this book, tearing the wings off of things and squishing eyeballs, Shelly’s just a victim in the popular memory of this event, the doctor is the scapegoat, it makes the book longer, we get him being punished for being bad, the narrator knows he was an evil psychopath, Patrick Hockstetter, a motivating force in the plot, thwarting our heroes, stealing the spark plugs, just cause a things exists in the world doesn’t mean we have to spend a long time thinking about it, like a fetish, napalm, people who afraid to swim in lakes and the ocean, the thing in the lake, the fetish people who loved the rollercoaster, subject to this scary ride, fulfilling some sort of person’s fetish, well framed, well lit pornography.

The Troop by Nick Cutter

Posted by Jesse WillisBecome a Patron!

The SFFaudio Podcast #660 – AUDIOBOOK/READALONG: Bartleby, The Scrivener by Herman Melville

Podcast

The SFFaudio PodcastThe SFFaudio Podcast #660 – Bartleby, The Scrivener by Herman Melville; read by Bob Neufeld

This unabridged reading of the story (1 hour 53 minutes) is followed by a discussion of it.

Participants in the discussion include Jesse, Paul Weimer, Evan Lampe, Marissa VU, and Will Emmmons

Talked about on today’s show:
A Story Of Wall Street, Putnam’s Monthly, November and December 1853, college and high school, fucking great, so funny, very humorous, no joke, Seinfeld style, sad and existential, struggles with depression, is Bartleby depressed?, what was Melville trying to say, different ways of reading, a moment of silence for all the poor kids in school, 4 minute explainers on youtube, hard to classify, a weird tale like you would get in Weird Tales, cadaverous, Fitz-James O’Brien, Franz Kafka, kafkaesque, William Wilson by Edgar Allan Poe, its a piece of science fiction, Bartleby is an android, Star Trek’s Data, radioactive suitcase, the ghost story angle, the most important way of reading it, its all about the lawyer, the other clerks, Ginger Nut, John Jacob Astor, I prefer not to pay, other people are inscrutable, master of chancery, work ethic, real estate law, Turkey is drunk by noon, Nippers, low wages, allowed to listen to music, ginger cakes, useless in the afternoons, Nippers is a criminal, capitalism, before the clock took over, working on Saturday, time and motion studies, a copyist pretending to be an attorney, the Roman patron system, seedy coats, great language, McTeague by Frank Norris, practicing dentistry without a license, The Confidence-Man by Herman Melville, a lot to glean, I am a rather elderly man, writing for an audience, other biographies, the law copyists, physical xerox machines, monk work, reading aloud, take student texts with punctuation, perfection in sentences, a creative work vs. copying from one document to another, divers histories, other law copyists, an irreparable loss to literature, the original sources aka him, the second part of the serialization of the story, this kind of artifact, serialized over two months, Bartleby’s previous career, most lawyers want to be writers, imprimus, the easiest way of life is the best, unambitious lawyers, a snug retreat, a snug business among rich men’s bonds, keeping track of rich people’s money, an eminently safe man, a nice pun, the late John Jacob Astor, all the negatives, prudence, method, not unemployed in my profession, a rounded and orbicular sound to into it, rings like unto bullion, complimenting himself, John Jacob Astor the first, how old this story is, the story is set way earlier, an interesting pacific connection, trans-continental, 1848, Astoria, the incensed landlord, a metaphor for the United States, fugitive visits, Bartleby like an Indian who refuses to leave to go to the reservation, named after an act of enclosure, walls, the dead letter office metaphor, Touched By An Angel, a Christian show, the science fiction equivalent is Quantum Leap, The A-Team, solving problems with guns, the Hallmark Channel, Christian niceness, Signed, Sealed, Delivered, Dear John I miss you, items, your job is to open up the letter, any objects in the mail, a ring or money or tires is then auctioned off, unrequited letters, instead of reading and deleting letters you copy letters, reading the contents, contracts between billionaires, what debt is owned to whom, reading Bartleby as a dead letter, he has no place to go, there is no dead letter office for humans, taken to the prison, the grub man, he’s a person not a letter, the focus on Bartleby as the main character is not as interesting, he’s the one with the problem: Bartleby, he’s a weird employer because he cares about his employees a lot, fighting the system, stalkers, roses and letter, not leaving someone alone and being outside their place, playing with social norms, interest becomes stalker, no women in this story, Ginger Nut as a woman, Bartleby (2001), a zombie apocalypse done through sound, Pontypool (2008), Pontypool Changes Everything by Tony Burgess, when you hear certain words on the television, earworms, things are going to change, a bit of visual or auditory information can change the world, what makes it existential, he’ll just stand there, won’t do anything, embarrassment, amazingly passive, as a strategy of work resistance, Office Space (1999), most employers, The Last Article by Harry Turtledove, he tolerates him vs. he escapes, rather move himself than move Bartleby, prefer, the way his hands are, behind the screen, so handy to me, I had in hand, my right hand sideways, nervously extended, in this very attitude did I sit, imagine my surprise, rallying my stunned faculties, prefer not to?, are you moonstruck?, Žižek, backwards grammar, ending with a preposition, plaster of paris Cicero, this is very strange, had his face been any different he would have fired him, what do you think about what this guy’s doing?, our narrator is allowing this to happen, ah Bartleby, ah humanity!, Bartleby is in such a horrible position, this is our situation, the main character wants to be fired, this guy’s got spunk!, I’m going to need you to go ahead and…, upper management hears you’re an up and comer, the other authority figures in the story, King Of The Hill, Dale Gribble likes firing people, maybe Evan understands American history, the institutions aren’t there, SWAT the employees, dump the vagrants, when the cops hung up on Jesse, wrote a stern email to the chief constable, the busybody was just making trouble, a local crime gang, not SWATing people as much, the normal response is to give up, if you invent the post office, some items are undeliverables, setting up policies, an Indian with no band, mentally ill but not causing a disturbance, just not going home, he has no home, you can’t do that with people, what makes our unnamed lawyer protagonist so strange is that he cares about Bartleby, we put ourselves into capitalism, feeling spicy at work, ginger is a hot spice, he whom it would relieve, charity, pallid hopelessness, continually handling these dead letters, the finger it was meant for moulders in the grave, hope for those who died un-hoping, these letters speed to death, hopelessness and misfortune, one of Melville’s kids killed himself with a gun at home, Melville worked at the customs house, what we know of Melville’s going to sea, he needs to get to sea because the land is not for him, Typee, malingering or mutiny or deserting, Evan’s YouTube video: Herman Melville Wants You To Quit Your Job, Mardi, failing to find paradise, screw all this, Whitejacket, Redburn, Moby-Dick, bored from his normal life, disappearing from the novel, just there to tell the story, what are you doing here, sitting on the banister, the cause of great tribulation, a clerkship in a drygoods store, too much confinement, a bartender’s business, Nippers is always adjusting his work table, Joe Piscopo, no standing desk like Rumsfeld, trying time trying to entertain, I like to be stationary (stationery), I am bound to quit the premises myself, not wholly indulged before, go home with his boss, like a force of nature, he’s like a letter that’s a human, he can’t say where he needs to go, Melville’s first attempt to write a short story, I prefer not to, the driving thesis of Paul’s professor, here we are, when Paul was young and callow, confronted by reality, I know I’m talented I know I have the goods, some time goes by people catch up to what he’s doing, why his story is being taught in school, appreciating it at as piece of art, The Willows by Algernon Blackwood, I Have Placed My Sickness Upon You by Karin Tidbeck, Frritt-Flacc aka The Ordeal Of Doctor Trifulgas aka Dr Trifulgas by Jules Verne, volcanic France, what the fuck is this?, there’s a document involved, it means something, The Lost Room by Fitz-James O’Brien, about our mental condition, metaness, what does Wall Street have to do with it?, balancing out his other employees, its wrong to read it from its wrong, it must happen daily, he’s his own doctor and he’s having a heart-attack, have we exhausted Bartleby?, religious stuff, the lawyer is a messed up guy, this uncanny guy, he stopped working because his eyesight was bad, this earworm of I prefer not to, they’re making fun of him, they’re making fun of the lawyer, they’re bullying him, the drunk is funny, their solidarity is with their boss, false solidarity, the boss’ neuroses, in the Tombs, I know who you are, I know what this place is, Bartleby gets it, the antagonist, not a good place, the military angle, he’s been drafted into the army, we’d like you to go shoot that man, he’s seen the Lovecraftian document, the horror behind the veil, being like a cadaver, weird trick, Ginger Nut, Bartleby only eats ginger nut and cheese, he’s called to go get them, Coffee Boy, why is Turkey called Turkey?, dies of starvation, Nippers is the eating of food, the religious aspect, moral suasion, act like a Christian, charity, governed by paternalism, as resistance strategy, the reform era, 1830s-1840s, the Second Great Awakening, reforming American sins, perfecting American society, the anti-flogging campaign, vagrancy, part of the that culture, are your eyes recovered?, in word will you do anything at all?, behind a blind, the tragedy of the unfortunate Adams the unfortunate Colt, his fatal act, had that altercation taken place in the public street, doubtless of dusty haggard of appearance, a murder, A kills C, Bartleby (B), I grappled him and threw him, recalling the divine inter-junction, ye love one another, a great safeguard to its possessor, a murder for charity’s sake, drowning my exasperated feelings, benevolently construing his conduct, he has seen hard times and ought to be indulged, charity is the answer, if I focus on charity I won’t kill him, a servant to John Jacob Astor, Upstairs, Downstairs , Highclere Castle, servants and rich people in a period setting, Downton Abbey, know her place, they need to know their place, but there’s dignity in working for good people above us, in doing our jobs well we become elevated, you know its fucking evil, she’s lying to herself, ground up by the music hall industry, wenching, seeing the household from both POVs, the head butler, a lot like Uncle Tom’s Cabin, we are meant to be outraged by it, I feel unplaced in the world, I feel unmoored, Bartleby is moored, the judgement of history, Edgar Allan Poe’s life, “no, no, no, guys, I’m great”, we don’t have infinite time, made to punish children, a deflection, another form of property ownership, northern firms involved in slavery, what this person’s business is, he’s not an abolitionist, when the suing comes, they’re not copying out literature or love poetry, their literal job is photocopier, why he likes copying at first, gaining information, read back what you’ve already written, as a re-reader, checking someone else’s work, One Hour Photo (2002), a kind of stalker, so late in the lifecycle of the film camera, taking your work to seriously, too solitary in your work, what were you thinking when the lawyer finds the door locked, I’m not ready yet, what was he doing in there?, in public records, pretending he’s a music producer, this is an impropriety on his part, is our lawyer married?, I’m bringing a strange Bartleby home, the first moment of aggression, he’s not aggressive at all, he’s very ethereal, maybe he’s playing VR or something, Bliss (2021), Paul got baited and switched, Owen Wilson as Bartleby, Crispin Glover, David Paymer, Glen Headley, Maury Chaykin, there’s no audience for this really good movie, made for schools, some menace there, Dickensian, Dickens isn’t philosophical enough for this, the names, the sense of humour, very much like a weird tale, the uncanny, The Paradise Of Bachelors And the Tartarus Of Maids, pale women in a paper factory, put together a new issue of Weird Tales just out of Herman Melville stories.

Posted by Jesse WillisBecome a Patron!