Entropy in Action

This past weekend, I journeyed to Roanoke, Virginia with my husband and my two daughters to attend MystiCon. Three days of geeky glory in Appalachia! I had no idea that so many fun, eccentric, nerdy people lived in places like Lynchburg (the home of Jerry Falwell).

The whole thing was wonderful. Costumes, art, gaming... My favorite part was a panel called "Far Out (or Way Far Out) Scientific Concepts You Need to Know About." I attended expecting a talk about dark matter, dark energy, maybe quantum tunneling computers or something deeply disturbing in neuroscience, surveillance technology, etc. What actually happened was much better.

Four men were on the panel, and it seemed as if they had been chosen for dadaistic effect. One was a CSI detective from Baltimore. One was a librarian who hunts ghosts in his spare time with a deep southern drawl. One was a tiny agnostic Jewish UFOlogist who teaches religious studies. One had worked with NASA, and had been on the scene when the Challenger exploded. This last person began with a discussion of space launching - how crude our current methods are, and how electromagnetic propulsion will become dominant. He went on to explain that the aliens among us are capable of instantaneous travel... Deadly serious, with glittering eyes, he invoked Uri Geller, the Council of Nine, the kabbalah. I have always been skeptical of the existence of such people in the military-industrial complex, The Men Who Stare At Goats notwithstanding. Yet when the creature itself stared my husband (who is very much like a goat) in the face, I was forced to admit that here was a tangible piece of evidence.

Everyone was monstrously polite.

I enjoyed myself immensely. I hope I was not alone in that!

This morning I woke early and left the house - husband and kids asleep. The sky was overcast, I thought, but by the time I walked to the bus stop I was aware of the east as an immensity of light. A man in a dark coat was at the bus stop and he spoke to me.

He asked me if I knew when the bus would come and I said No, and I stared at the sky and the trees and tried to avoid being aware of the man. A bus came and he said, "Here's the bus, is this your bus?" and I said "No, I'm waiting for another." So he took himself up into the bus and left me standing in the middle of the morning.

When my bus crossed above the freeway going to DC traffic I noticed that all the people in all those cars were alone. Isolated amidst furious motion. I notice this every time I go out of course but today it struck me that these people might have been robbed of a strength. "Every monster is the revenge of a strength unused." The topography, I saw it, but did I see it with the right eyes?

The seperateness of people, the isolation. The HOV lane. HOV means high occupancy vehicle which means more than one person.

I was always for my self, for being alone, for isolation. I don't like to think about the strength of community. But the traffic car people are monsters and I think they are getting the worst of both worlds.

E. "Mommy, can I have just three pieces of tape?"

M. "Sorry, no."

E. "Why not?"

M. "Because your dad gets mad when I give you tape."

E. "Daddy, can I have just three pieces of tape?"

J. "What do you want them for?"

E. "So I can make Ariadne's potty beautiful."

A. "Potty. Potty. Potty."

J. "..."

So I got email suggesting I do the livejournal thing. I figured why not? I don't feel especially creative now so this is all you bastards get.


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