October 2nd, 2011

Cartoon Chris

Hemingway at the Taco Bell

(Title inspired by local writer/neat person Kiala Kazebee...but inspired how? That's going unanswered...)

Yuntz was eating. It was late. The eatery's light was enough to keep him awake enough to be able to eat. That and the booze earlier. He scraped some remnants of chalupa from his beard.

"All the shit of the world is going to be found to have some of this food in it," Yuntz said.

Sarah looked at him. "It's not shit at the start," she said.

"That is not what I meant," he said.

Sarah sipped on her Mountain Dew Baja Blast. The employees called out order numbers for the people who'd ordered later. Others up late walked past, their shadows leaning away from the restaurant. Some of them entered and got in line, to decide between chicken or steak. Wrappers crinkled.

Yuntz didn't belch. As manly as he was, that would be crossing the line. "We should be here when it's light out," he said. "See who else comes here. See the sky outside. Not be afraid to get a sunburn like we did in Spain."

"We can walk at night just as easily as we walk in the day," Sarah said.

"But we'd see more," Yuntz said.


They sat in silence. An employee walked past, mopping the floor.

"Why is there a Taco Bell in Paris, again?" Sarah said.

"Had to happen. I mean, eventually," Yuntz said. He crunched his taco. "Wait. The Soft Taco Supreme's not supposed to crunch."

"You're eating the wrapper," Sarah said.

"Oh. Didn't notice."

It got later.

Flavored Calories.

And to remain random...

This morning I pictured Doctor Who as played by Peter Dinklage. Admit it, Whovians, now you can picture that. (Remember, he can do the accent...)

On the little bit of fiction I just posted, I actually looked up to see whether or not Taco Bell has a Paris, France location. No, it doesn't. Paris, Tennessee doesn't count.

My latest blood donation, yesterday midday, went fine, and was followed by good food at Russell Street Bar-B-Q. Give blood, get BBQ. Good trade.

I can say awful, awful things even about what I'm fond of. Got reminded of that watching, and snarking on, Return of the Jedi (the once-again-revised version on Blu Ray) with friends last night.

Time to get used again to rain and cold. And to remind myself that my first winter in Oregon, 1992-93, was especially wet even by Northwest Oregon standards, and I got through that. But I considered not going out last night because it was getting wet and cold. I'm glad I still did.

I find that when I say or write "That is all," I wonder if that really will be the last thing to ever say or write.

Finally (for now), on MTV's New Year's 1987 special, "Weird Al" Yankovic did his Robert Palmer parody "Addicted to Spuds":

Admiral Ackbar

To Idol or not to Idol?

A year ago, from this entry to this entry, I played (officially and then unofficially, because I was voted off) a writing/reading contest called LJ Idol. Also called therealljidol, if'n you want the link to it.

The contest is happening again. This will be, if I've heard correctly, the second-to-last season. I'm debating whether or not to try again.

It's a fantastic stretching exercise when it comes to your blog-writing: the moderator throws a topic at you, and hundreds of writers (divided into different "tribes") tackle it. Plenty of people, you hope, read what you've written. And eventually, after weeks of eliminations, someone wins it. My online friend tinhuviel won it its first season.

But would I have the time and the patience for it? It's a lot of writing, on deadline. It's then a lot of reading, to see what other contestants came up with. There's a social network aspect: you comment on entries, if you have something to say about them, and you won't know if it'll inspire thoughts unless you read it, right? And that's on deadline, too, because you vote in polls to support particular writers. Sometimes last time I ran out of time to vote in all of the polls, and felt guilty about missing that.

I also confirmed a bias of mine, one which will sadden or annoy neat person belgatherial but which is still my bias, I admit it: I found I had almost no patience for the contestants who did long-form fiction based on the prompts. Sustaining a story is hard enough, and I doubt that a lot of the LJ writers who did that were likely to come up with compelling stories when they're using the often really random prompts the LJ Idol moderator throws at contestants. I tried reading those, but couldn't really evaluate them fairly. I'd be less likely to read them well and fairly this time. I'm just not interested: to me, that's not really blogging. It employs a different skill. I'm experienced enough at blogging to be a decent evaluator of blogging; I'm not experienced enough at fiction-writing to evaluate LJ Idol fiction in the same way. I did do fiction pieces, like this one (an entry which I like a lot), but they were stand-alone responses to each particular prompt. With LJ Idol, there's so much writing to evaluate that I don't also want to be keeping track of several more ongoing stories on top of the novels and short stories I'm reading away from the Internet. Hey, even when I watched soap operas, I didn't watch that many at the same time! (My big ones were Guiding Light 'round 1985 and All My Children 'round '92, during my last year of high school, just so you know.) I want to read blogs. If you do fiction writing in LJ Idol, you're going to have to really impress me. Fair warning.

(Also a way to try my patience? The writers who deliberately locked themselves into some gimmick, like "write every LJ Idol entry as if I were a cat.")

So. Do I want to try again? Shall I dare to eat a peach? How much can I write? How much can I read?

...holy crap, I think I'm getting more interested in indeed doing it again. Should I be worried?