WHO IS HE BY MICHAEL EARL CRAIG   

                People ought to treat animals the way they would want to be treated. Farm animals have tough lives. Born on the farm they have little way of commuting to larger metropolitan areas. Cities hold plenty of opportunities for farm animals. Working as a bull on Wall Street makes sense for a literal bull. Large birds have found TV to be a popular source of employment. Stars like Big Bird originally found themselves on the farm and decided it was not for them. Many other farm animals would love to have the chance to make it in business, whether finance or show business.

                Animals have tried to take care of themselves. Chronicled in the hit book ‘Animal Farm’ the animals really had difficulty with communism in the same way that humans did. Unfortunately for the characters of ‘Animal Farm’ they saw their lives not getting any better. Run by the pigs they saw their standards of living gradually decrease, with a few workhorses duped into providing hard work for little gain. To make it even worse those who ran Animal Farm, the pigs, saw themselves portrayed as heartless creatures. In fairness there are many pigs throughout industry that became industrious. Babe, the pig in the big city, found his way eventually. Wilbur from the acclaimed ‘Charlotte’s Web’ saw his popularity increase thanks to his hard work and the help from a little spider. 

                Children are born to love animals. Like them, animals roll around in filth, get dirty, act silly, and generally have a great spot of fun. Similarly children and animals remain woefully misunderstood by the general public. Neither one is given its fair shake. Underachieving children are commonly referred to as ‘not meeting their full potential’. Animals are given similar dismissive statements. Truth is told, and the truth enjoys the spotlight, that both creatures love caring about others. Right when any guardian comes in through the door children rush towards them excited to tell them about their day. Pets enjoy this too jumping on new visitors, smelling them, or simply rubbing themselves against them. 

                The life of animals can be better. Animals will someday be given the same level of respect that is currently reserved for humans. It may take time but it will happen. Humanity spent a great many years busy trying to square away its disagreements amongst themselves and it isn’t even there yet. Getting to the point where humanity can begin to acknowledge the importance of creatures besides itself might take even longer but it ultimately will be worth it. It always is.

WHO IS HE BY MICHAEL EARL CRAIG   

                People ought to treat animals the way they would want to be treated. Farm animals have tough lives. Born on the farm they have little way of commuting to larger metropolitan areas. Cities hold plenty of opportunities for farm animals. Working as a bull on Wall Street makes sense for a literal bull. Large birds have found TV to be a popular source of employment. Stars like Big Bird originally found themselves on the farm and decided it was not for them. Many other farm animals would love to have the chance to make it in business, whether finance or show business.

                Animals have tried to take care of themselves. Chronicled in the hit book ‘Animal Farm’ the animals really had difficulty with communism in the same way that humans did. Unfortunately for the characters of ‘Animal Farm’ they saw their lives not getting any better. Run by the pigs they saw their standards of living gradually decrease, with a few workhorses duped into providing hard work for little gain. To make it even worse those who ran Animal Farm, the pigs, saw themselves portrayed as heartless creatures. In fairness there are many pigs throughout industry that became industrious. Babe, the pig in the big city, found his way eventually. Wilbur from the acclaimed ‘Charlotte’s Web’ saw his popularity increase thanks to his hard work and the help from a little spider. 

                Children are born to love animals. Like them, animals roll around in filth, get dirty, act silly, and generally have a great spot of fun. Similarly children and animals remain woefully misunderstood by the general public. Neither one is given its fair shake. Underachieving children are commonly referred to as ‘not meeting their full potential’. Animals are given similar dismissive statements. Truth is told, and the truth enjoys the spotlight, that both creatures love caring about others. Right when any guardian comes in through the door children rush towards them excited to tell them about their day. Pets enjoy this too jumping on new visitors, smelling them, or simply rubbing themselves against them. 

                The life of animals can be better. Animals will someday be given the same level of respect that is currently reserved for humans. It may take time but it will happen. Humanity spent a great many years busy trying to square away its disagreements amongst themselves and it isn’t even there yet. Getting to the point where humanity can begin to acknowledge the importance of creatures besides itself might take even longer but it ultimately will be worth it. It always is.

SELECTIONS FROM ANDREW WEATHERHEAD’S TWITTER ANDREW WEATHERHEAD, EDITED BY MALLORY WHITTEN


                What kind of hell does a person need to go through before they go to a Starbucks? The world in Starbucks makes no sense. People go to Starbucks to get caffeinated probably for something they can be half-asleep for like work. Nobody ever checks whether or not an employee is sleeping at their desk. Every time that happens one person in the office informs the others, they all look, giggle a little bit, and leave them alone mostly. Food at Starbucks is a bit on the rough side with plastic display food people want to eat for whatever reason. 

                Childhood lacks caffeine for good reason. Kids are active enough. Their imaginations still work. Most kids fail to accurately picture their future. A kid wants to grow up to be a dinosaur or whatever. During the aging process kids get pretty obnoxious calling everything ‘booty’ because they don’t know any better. Ignorance is bliss for children everywhere. Later on in life people never get that luxury so they really ought to milk it. Eventually a kid achieves adulthood and realizes few people grow up to become dinosaurs, excluding Barney, that purple dinosaur. Typically kids grow up to do office-type things surrounded by tastefully bland tans and purples. Fluorescent light buzzes are the closest they get to nature, since bugs get trapped in fluorescent lighting and aren’t smart enough to get out. 

                Lights mean way more things with the passage of time. The neon sign that seemed cool as a kid becomes an important marker for fast food or auto body repair. Everybody needs it since everybody drives everywhere. Few walk or take buses. Public transportation brings a certain level of Zen but heads are never ready for it. Quiet homes freak people out so a quiet bus would seriously mess up the mind. Commutes are supposed to be loud affairs fully within the control of the individual. By taking transportation one gives up that individualism for a collective vibe. 

                Armpit hair is the ultimate sign of individualism. People really dig their armpit hair once they get it. Everybody’s like ‘Oh cool, you grew additional hair. Good job.’ Later on armpit hair seems to be vaguely annoying and smelly. Like there isn’t even much of a purpose to armpit hair, that crevice in a person’s body seems to be warm enough without the additional hair. Yet there it loves its life refusing to be properly combed. Of course after the armpit hair goes away via age or the razor it eventually haunts that space yearning to reassert itself, just like childhood begins to build its own inner children inside of the minds of adults. Eventually with enough passage of time the outer adult layer cracks open to reveal the carefree salad days.

SELECTIONS FROM ANDREW WEATHERHEAD’S TWITTER ANDREW WEATHERHEAD, EDITED BY MALLORY WHITTEN

                What kind of hell does a person need to go through before they go to a Starbucks? The world in Starbucks makes no sense. People go to Starbucks to get caffeinated probably for something they can be half-asleep for like work. Nobody ever checks whether or not an employee is sleeping at their desk. Every time that happens one person in the office informs the others, they all look, giggle a little bit, and leave them alone mostly. Food at Starbucks is a bit on the rough side with plastic display food people want to eat for whatever reason. 

                Childhood lacks caffeine for good reason. Kids are active enough. Their imaginations still work. Most kids fail to accurately picture their future. A kid wants to grow up to be a dinosaur or whatever. During the aging process kids get pretty obnoxious calling everything ‘booty’ because they don’t know any better. Ignorance is bliss for children everywhere. Later on in life people never get that luxury so they really ought to milk it. Eventually a kid achieves adulthood and realizes few people grow up to become dinosaurs, excluding Barney, that purple dinosaur. Typically kids grow up to do office-type things surrounded by tastefully bland tans and purples. Fluorescent light buzzes are the closest they get to nature, since bugs get trapped in fluorescent lighting and aren’t smart enough to get out. 

                Lights mean way more things with the passage of time. The neon sign that seemed cool as a kid becomes an important marker for fast food or auto body repair. Everybody needs it since everybody drives everywhere. Few walk or take buses. Public transportation brings a certain level of Zen but heads are never ready for it. Quiet homes freak people out so a quiet bus would seriously mess up the mind. Commutes are supposed to be loud affairs fully within the control of the individual. By taking transportation one gives up that individualism for a collective vibe. 

                Armpit hair is the ultimate sign of individualism. People really dig their armpit hair once they get it. Everybody’s like ‘Oh cool, you grew additional hair. Good job.’ Later on armpit hair seems to be vaguely annoying and smelly. Like there isn’t even much of a purpose to armpit hair, that crevice in a person’s body seems to be warm enough without the additional hair. Yet there it loves its life refusing to be properly combed. Of course after the armpit hair goes away via age or the razor it eventually haunts that space yearning to reassert itself, just like childhood begins to build its own inner children inside of the minds of adults. Eventually with enough passage of time the outer adult layer cracks open to reveal the carefree salad days.

SELECTIONS FROM BRIAN MORTON’S TWITTER BRIAN MORTON, EDITED BY TAO LIN

                Brian Morton is a dad on the Internet. This is meant as the sincerest form of praise. Plenty of individuals live life on the Internet pretending to be dads. At this point being a dad on the Internet is a bit of a MEME. For dads the Internet is a thing their children use. Long ago dads might have been into computers getting everything programmed up but now that a computer is a form of communication, forget it. Good thing dads still have TV and recliners in their ‘man caves’ where they can retreat away from the rest of the world. Writing dads call ‘man caves’ their ‘studies’ in an attempt to disguise the generally useless activity that goes on in such a place. 

                With Twitter Brian Morton has found his perfect craft. Every tweet is focused on his inner dad. This is hard work especially to do online with sincerity. His children provide plenty of tweet-able quotes. Parents have children for a variety of reasons. At first children are adorable being cute not really contributing much of anything. Next with early childhood they become nearly philosophical with their musings about the world unfiltered from any particular basis. Later the children become entertaining providing a conversation partner. Bringing in the teens is troublesome due to the extreme irrational behavior they display. Finally when children become adults they leave to start new families or do whatever it is adults actually do with their lives. Reaching adulthood takes a lifetime. 

                Children psyche out their parents. Many child-held beliefs are insincere. Few children actually believe in Santa Claus. Rather the children humor their parents pretending that their parental overlords have that amount of power and influence behind them. When children fight the only thing that brings them back together is an even more pronounced dislike of those who brought them into the world. Anyone who tries to live-tweet their children fighting is in for a world of hurt. On the plus side the children will stop fighting each other giving the parents a peace of sorts. 

                A child eventually becomes an adult. Surprisingly children have incredibly good memories. Whatever is said to a child comes back to stay synced up in their mind for the rest of their days, even nights depending on how long they stay up for. Hipsters begin in childhood. Little fragments try to come together to build something very truly grand. There is a time and place for becoming a hipster. Enough effort on the part of a hipster makes them into aging hipsters into something entirely different. Inane thoughts of an aging hipster include what was cool and what is cool. Unfortunately due to age few aged hipsters are ever acknowledged for their hipness. On the plus side many aged hipsters have financial security and a roof over their heads, something few regular hipsters could even dream of. 

                Eventually Enlightenment happens. It takes a while. Younger individuals never understand what Enlightenment means. With years of living the purpose of Enlightenment becomes clear. Due to age restrictions Enlightenment can never be shared on the Internet for it is different for everyone.

JEFFREY, VINCENT, JEFFREY AND VINCENT’S FATHER, AND THE WOMAN IN THE PHOTOGRAPH BY BRANDON SCOTT GORRELL


                Family tragedies are the saddest. If a family member falls but nobody watches it is not a tragedy. That is simply another part of life. Objects of failure deserve some sort of respect at the very end. Unfortunately the tragedy usually happens long after anything could be done about it. What occurs after the refinement of the decline is that people are brought together out of a familial bond. Strangely every family has this bond in varying degrees of strength. Funerals manage to bring everyone together in a single location for a short period of time. During this emotionally vulnerable period the death onlookers (as funeral attendees are called) attempt to make plans to meet again. Reconnect, that scary word is thrown around casually. 

                Every family member gets there in a slightly different way. Age differences make such things particularly awkward. Speaking terms or no speaking terms are torn asunder as new rules regarding engagement are written. With a divorce speaking terms become infinitely complicated. The exchanges between the varying individuals mean that ‘quality time’ gains a whole other meaning as time is rationed off into unequal doses. For children divorces can be nasty elongated things, race tracks that cycle between the two sets of parents. Children are shuttled between the two sets becoming pawns without knowing it sometimes. When the children know they are pawns that gives them a degree of free reign to rule over everything. 

                The original child gets a stepchild and a new mom. Neither one of these things was ever asked for, simply given. Weddings, re-weddings are bizarre rituals where no one feels entirely comfortable. Re-weddings are déjà vu for the participants. A new child means the relationship becomes whole once more with the bearing of living, breathing, and crying fruit. Stepchildren have difficulties dealing with each other initially. In fact it can be hard to ultimately handle the fact that there is a new line, of genetic material going onward indefinitely into the world. Sometimes it becomes too difficult to handle and is left completely alone. 

                Loneliness is one way of dealing with the complications. Divorce, the second time around, hurts worse. Convinced that life is going to be spent entirely alone the person gradually decays wanting to simply live out the remaining days without anyone bothering them. Upon death everyone is forced to come together, say a few words, and return back to their lives. After any funeral the only goal is to mourn the death and to continue to be left alone by the world, hidden in grief.

JEFFREY, VINCENT, JEFFREY AND VINCENT’S FATHER, AND THE WOMAN IN THE PHOTOGRAPH BY BRANDON SCOTT GORRELL

                Family tragedies are the saddest. If a family member falls but nobody watches it is not a tragedy. That is simply another part of life. Objects of failure deserve some sort of respect at the very end. Unfortunately the tragedy usually happens long after anything could be done about it. What occurs after the refinement of the decline is that people are brought together out of a familial bond. Strangely every family has this bond in varying degrees of strength. Funerals manage to bring everyone together in a single location for a short period of time. During this emotionally vulnerable period the death onlookers (as funeral attendees are called) attempt to make plans to meet again. Reconnect, that scary word is thrown around casually. 

                Every family member gets there in a slightly different way. Age differences make such things particularly awkward. Speaking terms or no speaking terms are torn asunder as new rules regarding engagement are written. With a divorce speaking terms become infinitely complicated. The exchanges between the varying individuals mean that ‘quality time’ gains a whole other meaning as time is rationed off into unequal doses. For children divorces can be nasty elongated things, race tracks that cycle between the two sets of parents. Children are shuttled between the two sets becoming pawns without knowing it sometimes. When the children know they are pawns that gives them a degree of free reign to rule over everything. 

                The original child gets a stepchild and a new mom. Neither one of these things was ever asked for, simply given. Weddings, re-weddings are bizarre rituals where no one feels entirely comfortable. Re-weddings are déjà vu for the participants. A new child means the relationship becomes whole once more with the bearing of living, breathing, and crying fruit. Stepchildren have difficulties dealing with each other initially. In fact it can be hard to ultimately handle the fact that there is a new line, of genetic material going onward indefinitely into the world. Sometimes it becomes too difficult to handle and is left completely alone. 

                Loneliness is one way of dealing with the complications. Divorce, the second time around, hurts worse. Convinced that life is going to be spent entirely alone the person gradually decays wanting to simply live out the remaining days without anyone bothering them. Upon death everyone is forced to come together, say a few words, and return back to their lives. After any funeral the only goal is to mourn the death and to continue to be left alone by the world, hidden in grief.

SELECTIONS FROM JORDAN CASTRO’S TWITTER

                Jordan Castro is having a trill year. Lately he’s been traveling across the country doing a reading tour with Megan Boyle, Sam Pink, Scott McClanahan, Mallory Whitten and the savory Salisbury Bushnell. ‘Shoplifting from American Apparel’ showed off Jordan Castro’s acting chops. In his spare time he runs his very own Ohio based band aptly named ‘The Ohioans’. Recently he busted out the big beautiful book of ‘Young Americans’ chronicling the life and times of a young, virile man growing up in America. Honestly Jordan is virile as fuck, despite his best efforts to rip off his own dick. 

                The set begins with an emphasis on his age. Jordan Castro graduated high school. Many consider this a true accomplishment, a testament to getting through the worst part of life. In fact judging from the last tweet about the first day of college there is really solid framing effect for these tweets. Megan Boyle does a really good job of showing how Jordan Castro’s mind works during that time of ‘pure freedom’ from school, away from old friends and hoping to make new ones. 

                ‘just want to write a book so good that all of my behavior is excusable’ is the best tweet in the whole collection. If there’s one tweet that deserves to be re-tweeted out of the bunch it is this one. Writers typically refer to their own work as a justification for their actions. Sometimes shitty writers are also shitty people. Book quality has nothing to do with it often. Yet the idea is common enough that Jordan’s take is particularly funny. Besides he recently put out a book, so perhaps this tweet also has a ‘prophetic’ quality to it. Maybe Jordan knew, subconsciously that he would be out a book to extreme critical acclaim. 

                X-men get a lot of attention in this tweet series. Clearly Jordan Castro loves ‘the fuck’ out of that perennial all-American comic book series. One of the most notable aspects of American culture is the fear of a massive, all powerful government. Usually this government hates mutants for reasons that are convoluted, boring, and poorly explained. Yet the explanation doesn’t really matter as long as some cars transform into robots, some web is slung, and at least one awkward love scene is shown. Jordan explains how he lost control of his left leg due to the overwhelming power of the X-men movie. 

                The tweets about loneliness are great. Rummaging around people’s homes in broad daylight searching for happiness is commonly referred to as ‘hanging out’. Crying uncontrollably on the floor while looking really good is typical for anyone between the ages of 16 to 32. After 32 it gets easier, hopefully. If someone is worried about the terrible direction their life is going they should read these tweets since these tweets would make anyone feel less alone in loneliness.

SELECTIONS FROM JORDAN CASTRO’S TWITTER

                Jordan Castro is having a trill year. Lately he’s been traveling across the country doing a reading tour with Megan Boyle, Sam Pink, Scott McClanahan, Mallory Whitten and the savory Salisbury Bushnell. ‘Shoplifting from American Apparel’ showed off Jordan Castro’s acting chops. In his spare time he runs his very own Ohio based band aptly named ‘The Ohioans’. Recently he busted out the big beautiful book of ‘Young Americans’ chronicling the life and times of a young, virile man growing up in America. Honestly Jordan is virile as fuck, despite his best efforts to rip off his own dick. 

                The set begins with an emphasis on his age. Jordan Castro graduated high school. Many consider this a true accomplishment, a testament to getting through the worst part of life. In fact judging from the last tweet about the first day of college there is really solid framing effect for these tweets. Megan Boyle does a really good job of showing how Jordan Castro’s mind works during that time of ‘pure freedom’ from school, away from old friends and hoping to make new ones. 

                ‘just want to write a book so good that all of my behavior is excusable’ is the best tweet in the whole collection. If there’s one tweet that deserves to be re-tweeted out of the bunch it is this one. Writers typically refer to their own work as a justification for their actions. Sometimes shitty writers are also shitty people. Book quality has nothing to do with it often. Yet the idea is common enough that Jordan’s take is particularly funny. Besides he recently put out a book, so perhaps this tweet also has a ‘prophetic’ quality to it. Maybe Jordan knew, subconsciously that he would be out a book to extreme critical acclaim. 

                X-men get a lot of attention in this tweet series. Clearly Jordan Castro loves ‘the fuck’ out of that perennial all-American comic book series. One of the most notable aspects of American culture is the fear of a massive, all powerful government. Usually this government hates mutants for reasons that are convoluted, boring, and poorly explained. Yet the explanation doesn’t really matter as long as some cars transform into robots, some web is slung, and at least one awkward love scene is shown. Jordan explains how he lost control of his left leg due to the overwhelming power of the X-men movie. 

                The tweets about loneliness are great. Rummaging around people’s homes in broad daylight searching for happiness is commonly referred to as ‘hanging out’. Crying uncontrollably on the floor while looking really good is typical for anyone between the ages of 16 to 32. After 32 it gets easier, hopefully. If someone is worried about the terrible direction their life is going they should read these tweets since these tweets would make anyone feel less alone in loneliness.

[EXCERPT] from Clancy Martin

                Everybody has a grand old time in Miami. A whole slew of characters descend upon the winter retreat. Without winter there would be no Florida. People go there during the absolute worst moments in weather. Snow, cold, sheer wretchedness doesn’t exist quite the same way in Florida. Here the guests are tortured but by other things. Previous relationships come up. Complications of life rise out of the ashes of relationships killed. Oftentimes it seems hopeless to even bother with those old people in those old relationships. Yet Brett is willing to give it all a chance in this little ‘Excerpt’. 

                Parties are an important part of the city. Readings devolve into parties. Writers like getting down. Usually writers are thought of as intellectual, highly sensitive people with deep emotions. That might be true for some writers. Here though everyone works on a whole other level. Friends are stood up. Husbands are left to manage hotels. Brett decides to mock the professional of hotel management. Honestly though hotel management is a lucrative career. Anybody can make it in the glamorous world of hotel management. Right as Brett insults the very notion of hotel management there she is, in a hotel, looking at the richly appointed interior. Obviously she fails to appreciate the benefits of hotel management, which brings joy to millions of travelers all across the world. 

                Brett laughs at the ignorance of her friend. Sadie is well-dressed but poorly-informed. Thanks to the power of Paul’s idiocy, he too remains in the dark managing a hotel somewhere. Good thing Brett has a way more exciting life as a writer. Writing creates whole other worlds, the sort of worlds that involve all sorts of habits of ill-repute. Sometimes those writers simply go for that kind of writing, writing about the filth, literal dirt. One poet Brett meets writes poems about mud. Usually that’s the dirtiest kind of poem, a mud poem, wiping its filth all over the place like a mud-encrusted music festival goer. 

                Excerpt ends with a heartfelt look at extreme fucking. Sex is an important thing to ‘do right’. Many have sex incorrectly. Eduard appears to have a good idea about sex via the ridiculous amount of it he has with Brett. Besides the sheer quantity there’s also the obsessive insane type of sex being had, the whole drawing-blood sex that’s all the rage lately. At the very end, after the intense form of communication, they are together again.

Likable by Deb Olin Unferth



                Aging is the most depressing thing. Youth protects against the wretched awfulness backlash. To be young is to be a bit of a jackass. That’s part of youth. Being a kind and considerable person at an early age is a waste of a childhood. Childhood, the teenage years, the twenties, these are moments to excise the unpleasantness out of one’s system. Given enough time spent being awful suddenly the goodness begins to rise up. Rottenness is part of the growing process. Eventually the rottenness is defeated and the good wholesomeness can shine through. In some cases people refuse to grow up staying the same way for an indefinite period of time. Left alone they will die unloved just like everybody else does. 

                Poor character in the story fails to understand this basic premise and it is so basic. She chooses to be the same at age forty as she was at age twenty. There’s no room for that kind of error. Adults tend to be of the unforgiving kind. Miserable yet unable to be alone she manages to bother everybody around her. Unpleasantness follows out of her mouth. Out of her pores she secretes wretched vile awfulness. Watching TV the character runs into the same problem. Where there should have been evolution there is only the stagnant. No way exists for her to change her ways. Perhaps she could do it but she clings to an older time when people found her witty. 

                Humor evolves too. There’s a reason nobody thinks Seinfeld is funny anymore. The guy has hundreds of millions of dollars. He doesn’t need to be funny. If the character had that much money the character could simply insulate herself from her aging inability. For the years pass and she grows older. People tolerate her since that’s what age is all about: holding onto old friends. Much of the aging process involves pining for one’s youth. Despite her inability to please anyone by remaining in arrested development she can relive her youth each and every day. The downside is so can everyone else and everyone else has no desire to do such a thing. 

                Eventually the character remembers the power of death. Death ends all of that suffering. People grow old. With age comes wisdom. Give a few more years, after wisdom has been achieved and that’s death. For some reason living people hate being surrounded by the dead. Give people a dead person’s art, work, or biography and they are fascinated. Decomposing people are less interesting. Decomposing people get the ground so they may entertain ants and become the true salt of the Earth.

Likable by Deb Olin Unferth

                Aging is the most depressing thing. Youth protects against the wretched awfulness backlash. To be young is to be a bit of a jackass. That’s part of youth. Being a kind and considerable person at an early age is a waste of a childhood. Childhood, the teenage years, the twenties, these are moments to excise the unpleasantness out of one’s system. Given enough time spent being awful suddenly the goodness begins to rise up. Rottenness is part of the growing process. Eventually the rottenness is defeated and the good wholesomeness can shine through. In some cases people refuse to grow up staying the same way for an indefinite period of time. Left alone they will die unloved just like everybody else does. 

                Poor character in the story fails to understand this basic premise and it is so basic. She chooses to be the same at age forty as she was at age twenty. There’s no room for that kind of error. Adults tend to be of the unforgiving kind. Miserable yet unable to be alone she manages to bother everybody around her. Unpleasantness follows out of her mouth. Out of her pores she secretes wretched vile awfulness. Watching TV the character runs into the same problem. Where there should have been evolution there is only the stagnant. No way exists for her to change her ways. Perhaps she could do it but she clings to an older time when people found her witty. 

                Humor evolves too. There’s a reason nobody thinks Seinfeld is funny anymore. The guy has hundreds of millions of dollars. He doesn’t need to be funny. If the character had that much money the character could simply insulate herself from her aging inability. For the years pass and she grows older. People tolerate her since that’s what age is all about: holding onto old friends. Much of the aging process involves pining for one’s youth. Despite her inability to please anyone by remaining in arrested development she can relive her youth each and every day. The downside is so can everyone else and everyone else has no desire to do such a thing. 

                Eventually the character remembers the power of death. Death ends all of that suffering. People grow old. With age comes wisdom. Give a few more years, after wisdom has been achieved and that’s death. For some reason living people hate being surrounded by the dead. Give people a dead person’s art, work, or biography and they are fascinated. Decomposing people are less interesting. Decomposing people get the ground so they may entertain ants and become the true salt of the Earth.

The Wolf at the Door by Rebecca Curtis
                Rebecca Curtis works an ordinary office job like any other person. Staying too late, burning that midnight oil in spite of ever-rising oil prices, Rebecca is a model employee. Unfortunately she makes a fatal mistake in her other diligent work. By going to the ‘off-limits’ bathroom she fails to adhere to the rules. Every office has that ‘good’ bathroom where the higher up people go to, going to the bathroom listening to Schubert, theirs is a life well-heeded. Trickle-down economics begins in bathrooms. Giving the lower echelons of workers something to really cherish, like a bathroom with working soap dispensers and towels, is the first step towards a happy productive workforce. 
                Home after a long day at work Rebecca is ready to sit down and relax with her beloved family. A wolf comes to the door. Before Rebecca can drink that cool refreshing taste of Coors Lite she must fight off a wolf. The wolf is persistent. Unlike Rebecca the wolf has quite a nice car. Next to the wolf is his bored girlfriend waiting for some sweet Rebecca to eat. Actually this part of the story appears to be patently untrue. Wolves rarely if ever attack humans. Fatalities from wolf attacks in the US are extremely low. Plus wolves generally lack the income flow to purchase expense imported luxury automobiles. In fact Rebecca has more of wolf personality, running home, peeing loudly, all wolf sorts of things. 
                A military complex is lucky enough to have Rebecca as a faithful worker. The lights are turned off on her, somewhat unfairly. Perhaps if Rebecca had noticed the lights she might not have encountered the wolf problem. And the wolf is a strong beast. Rebecca begs her sister to get a knife, any knife but the plea falls on deaf ears. This nasty wolf has been bothering them for a while. What happens to its victims is left unsaid. If Rebecca needs a knife the assumption should be something bad. Fortunately things work out a little bit for Rebecca. Not in the ‘her life was forever saved’ but more in the dissatisfaction that the wolf encounters. Being a wolf is a terrible job, perhaps worse than office work. 
                By the end the wolf is revealed to be a somewhat lonely creature with considerable pockets. Alone in its wealth the wolf cannot interact with people in any other way but violence. In other words the wolf is probably a card-carrying Republican just trying to ruin people’s lives in a more visceral, literal way. Rebecca does the right thing. She reinforces the loneliness of the wolf.

The Wolf at the Door by Rebecca Curtis

                Rebecca Curtis works an ordinary office job like any other person. Staying too late, burning that midnight oil in spite of ever-rising oil prices, Rebecca is a model employee. Unfortunately she makes a fatal mistake in her other diligent work. By going to the ‘off-limits’ bathroom she fails to adhere to the rules. Every office has that ‘good’ bathroom where the higher up people go to, going to the bathroom listening to Schubert, theirs is a life well-heeded. Trickle-down economics begins in bathrooms. Giving the lower echelons of workers something to really cherish, like a bathroom with working soap dispensers and towels, is the first step towards a happy productive workforce. 

                Home after a long day at work Rebecca is ready to sit down and relax with her beloved family. A wolf comes to the door. Before Rebecca can drink that cool refreshing taste of Coors Lite she must fight off a wolf. The wolf is persistent. Unlike Rebecca the wolf has quite a nice car. Next to the wolf is his bored girlfriend waiting for some sweet Rebecca to eat. Actually this part of the story appears to be patently untrue. Wolves rarely if ever attack humans. Fatalities from wolf attacks in the US are extremely low. Plus wolves generally lack the income flow to purchase expense imported luxury automobiles. In fact Rebecca has more of wolf personality, running home, peeing loudly, all wolf sorts of things. 

                A military complex is lucky enough to have Rebecca as a faithful worker. The lights are turned off on her, somewhat unfairly. Perhaps if Rebecca had noticed the lights she might not have encountered the wolf problem. And the wolf is a strong beast. Rebecca begs her sister to get a knife, any knife but the plea falls on deaf ears. This nasty wolf has been bothering them for a while. What happens to its victims is left unsaid. If Rebecca needs a knife the assumption should be something bad. Fortunately things work out a little bit for Rebecca. Not in the ‘her life was forever saved’ but more in the dissatisfaction that the wolf encounters. Being a wolf is a terrible job, perhaps worse than office work. 

                By the end the wolf is revealed to be a somewhat lonely creature with considerable pockets. Alone in its wealth the wolf cannot interact with people in any other way but violence. In other words the wolf is probably a card-carrying Republican just trying to ruin people’s lives in a more visceral, literal way. Rebecca does the right thing. She reinforces the loneliness of the wolf.

DREAM OF A CLEAN SLATE by John Haskell



                Jackson Pollock had two irreconcilable hopes: to be appreciated for whom he was while trying to hold back the artistic inclination others appreciated. Hence he lived an uncomfortable life. Few understood why he felt the need to suffer in order to properly deal with problems, internal problems not apparent to the naked eye. What resulted was the loss of a finger, a punch in the gut, all ways to deal with a reality that he deemed unnecessarily cruel. Unfortunately as this was his perspective and no one else’s there was no one else to share his pain.

                Haskell begins with a literal example of this: Pollock at the Cedar Tavern. He sees someone. Perhaps they are interesting. He is uncertain. Imbibing enough alcohol is impossible. Every drink brought him further away from her. Even in his dreams he grows further away. Things always appear to be drifting away from him, away from his control. In a way he is a controlling person. Despite his paintings outward appearance they are deeply controlled experiments. All he wants is to control his feelings, his emotions, and have others appreciate him as a person rather than an artistic outlier. 

                Acceptance is difficult for Pollock. He wants to earn it. The fact others accept him bothers him. He wants to prove himself to others. Yet these others, these Ruths, these Lees, and these people who pay him for the paintings take his word for it. It bothers him enormously. All he wants is a clean slate, the ability to start over without any pre-conceived notion of who he is. By proving himself he can earn his way in a way. Failing to do this bothers him, forces him to have a cleansing ritual. Picking fights with far less successful artists is one way to do it. Other ways is to yell at his wife Lee telling her to ‘Forget You’. 

                ‘Oh’ is part of his secret language with Lee. Since he doesn’t enjoy speaking he prefers using the word ‘Oh’ to convey whatever meaning he wants. With this language he can avoid lengthy conversations. The meaning is implied. Once more the outside world infringes on a world that should just be his. He wants his own world with people he likes and cares about. There are all these intruders, various bums, lookers, and he wants them gone. What he wants is to suffer and have people pity him. This is terrible yet from childhood he wanted the same things, to have suffered and have others pity his suffering. They could see him from afar and shake his head.

                Here it ends in a way where he has a clean slate. It ends with cleanliness. There is nothing more. Everything is over. He gets a relief after so much inner suffering of his life. Finally he’s at peace and nobody will misunderstand him again. He’s untouchable, unknowable, like he was in life only this time it is permanent. He controls the end.

DREAM OF A CLEAN SLATE by John Haskell

                Jackson Pollock had two irreconcilable hopes: to be appreciated for whom he was while trying to hold back the artistic inclination others appreciated. Hence he lived an uncomfortable life. Few understood why he felt the need to suffer in order to properly deal with problems, internal problems not apparent to the naked eye. What resulted was the loss of a finger, a punch in the gut, all ways to deal with a reality that he deemed unnecessarily cruel. Unfortunately as this was his perspective and no one else’s there was no one else to share his pain.

                Haskell begins with a literal example of this: Pollock at the Cedar Tavern. He sees someone. Perhaps they are interesting. He is uncertain. Imbibing enough alcohol is impossible. Every drink brought him further away from her. Even in his dreams he grows further away. Things always appear to be drifting away from him, away from his control. In a way he is a controlling person. Despite his paintings outward appearance they are deeply controlled experiments. All he wants is to control his feelings, his emotions, and have others appreciate him as a person rather than an artistic outlier. 

                Acceptance is difficult for Pollock. He wants to earn it. The fact others accept him bothers him. He wants to prove himself to others. Yet these others, these Ruths, these Lees, and these people who pay him for the paintings take his word for it. It bothers him enormously. All he wants is a clean slate, the ability to start over without any pre-conceived notion of who he is. By proving himself he can earn his way in a way. Failing to do this bothers him, forces him to have a cleansing ritual. Picking fights with far less successful artists is one way to do it. Other ways is to yell at his wife Lee telling her to ‘Forget You’. 

                ‘Oh’ is part of his secret language with Lee. Since he doesn’t enjoy speaking he prefers using the word ‘Oh’ to convey whatever meaning he wants. With this language he can avoid lengthy conversations. The meaning is implied. Once more the outside world infringes on a world that should just be his. He wants his own world with people he likes and cares about. There are all these intruders, various bums, lookers, and he wants them gone. What he wants is to suffer and have people pity him. This is terrible yet from childhood he wanted the same things, to have suffered and have others pity his suffering. They could see him from afar and shake his head.

                Here it ends in a way where he has a clean slate. It ends with cleanliness. There is nothing more. Everything is over. He gets a relief after so much inner suffering of his life. Finally he’s at peace and nobody will misunderstand him again. He’s untouchable, unknowable, like he was in life only this time it is permanent. He controls the end.



A Short Essay on the War by Dylan Nice


                The war consumes all. It eats all. It greets all. People look for war searching for meaning to their own meaningless lives. Nothing gives them hope or despair. War though gives them change. As the anonymous person, the titular ‘hero’ of the story, thinks about war he seems almost happy about things. Like a war could finally give him something new different from what he has currently experienced. With a war he can find meaning. Like countless young budding losers before him he can find people who will come together under war. Relationships are forged that way. He imagines such a thing happening to him. War is good for bringing people together and for tearing people apart. It is sad that way. 

                School bores him. His answers are inadequate. They appear unwilling to surrender a degree to him. This frustrates him. Generally people pay for school to receive recognition for the ability to get through school. He sits in a limbo. Unsure if he is a man he dreams of a summer war. Assaults on the senses only occur in spring and summer. Fall and winter are too bleak for war. War needs to be glorified hence the hottest part of the year. He wipes his face clean. Despite his desire for war he wears a clean white shirt. Yes it may be clean now but he wants to be dirty. His cleanliness can be purified by the sheer muck and grime of war. No one even needs to be near war to be in war. It takes place mostly from far away. Only a select few experience it firsthand. 

                People are incapable of anything. All the unnamed character wants is to feel something. Unfortunately the geography limits him. He wishes to get hit by a car. This fails since cars hate him. Those driving the cars love him. Put together and it equals his life, saved. Romance is dead. Even his death is dead. His death fails to happen. Poor creature only wants to die. He looks out for the war to end it or to renew it. To keep himself occupied he tries to starve himself to create variation in his boring useless life. 

                Eventually like all good dead on the inside people he moved into a well-insulated apartment. This keeps him warm. With the apartment he stays on the inside looking out at a world he fails to comprehend. ‘Well-insulated’ indicates one of those young urban professional deals where people live in a style similar to city life only devoid of actual culture. Townhouses are actual townhouses in the cities, but in the suburbs they are weak compromises with what spawned the suburbs. The well-insulated places are full of fear and comfort in equal doses. 

                Wars wait for everyone. Most of war is waiting. This unnamed character wants it since he has nothing else to want.

A Short Essay on the War by Dylan Nice

                The war consumes all. It eats all. It greets all. People look for war searching for meaning to their own meaningless lives. Nothing gives them hope or despair. War though gives them change. As the anonymous person, the titular ‘hero’ of the story, thinks about war he seems almost happy about things. Like a war could finally give him something new different from what he has currently experienced. With a war he can find meaning. Like countless young budding losers before him he can find people who will come together under war. Relationships are forged that way. He imagines such a thing happening to him. War is good for bringing people together and for tearing people apart. It is sad that way. 

                School bores him. His answers are inadequate. They appear unwilling to surrender a degree to him. This frustrates him. Generally people pay for school to receive recognition for the ability to get through school. He sits in a limbo. Unsure if he is a man he dreams of a summer war. Assaults on the senses only occur in spring and summer. Fall and winter are too bleak for war. War needs to be glorified hence the hottest part of the year. He wipes his face clean. Despite his desire for war he wears a clean white shirt. Yes it may be clean now but he wants to be dirty. His cleanliness can be purified by the sheer muck and grime of war. No one even needs to be near war to be in war. It takes place mostly from far away. Only a select few experience it firsthand. 

                People are incapable of anything. All the unnamed character wants is to feel something. Unfortunately the geography limits him. He wishes to get hit by a car. This fails since cars hate him. Those driving the cars love him. Put together and it equals his life, saved. Romance is dead. Even his death is dead. His death fails to happen. Poor creature only wants to die. He looks out for the war to end it or to renew it. To keep himself occupied he tries to starve himself to create variation in his boring useless life. 

                Eventually like all good dead on the inside people he moved into a well-insulated apartment. This keeps him warm. With the apartment he stays on the inside looking out at a world he fails to comprehend. ‘Well-insulated’ indicates one of those young urban professional deals where people live in a style similar to city life only devoid of actual culture. Townhouses are actual townhouses in the cities, but in the suburbs they are weak compromises with what spawned the suburbs. The well-insulated places are full of fear and comfort in equal doses. 

                Wars wait for everyone. Most of war is waiting. This unnamed character wants it since he has nothing else to want.