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Jan
06

What, am I talking about health? Trying to be trendy? I know North Americans hear so much discussion over eating habits and physical health, such things are the last issues we want to read about, or are they? Maybe we’re in a unique space in human history, where we have the means to fix and prolong our bodies, but have hordes of food and vices available to destroy it as well. Add to this our ability, for many, to earn enough to survive without using much our bodies metabolism to do so.

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I’m not going to burrow this down to how many cabs you should be shoving into your mouth, I’m looking at a more complex issue, perhaps the source of so much of our health and nutrition debates.

Why am I diving into this topic? It’s because it has some relevance in regards to my current state. If you’ll indulge me to allow myself to be an example to help explore the issue of human technology versus health, we can get started. My main point is… As technological advancements are extending life, technology has become a double-edged sword which also makes many of us some of the unhealthiest humans this world has ever seen.

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Okay, back to me. You knew it was coming. As some of you may remember, I went from living on the cusp between, nature, traveling, and urban sofa squatting for over a year, before becoming more settled into this city clinging to the Sonoran Desert. After the move, I was thin, in great shape, at least for me, and riding my mountain bike a few dozen miles a day through raging heat.

Then I got my place.

I kept up the bike riding and was making much of my cash from physical labor. Still there is a big difference riding your bike ten miles into town for groceries, and just crossing the street. Most of my more intensive jobs aren’t much harder than camping three days in a row, or putting in 14 hours days prepping for my move.

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Is this how hard I have to work to keep this beer belly at bay? Because despite rounding out the year with only using the bike as transport, getting physical, and exercising every day, I’m seeing it grow.

And now I have a car.

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And… after not having wheels for so long, it sure feeling tempting to drive it around, just because I can.

Jello Biafra said, “Give me convince or give me death,” Perhaps now, it could be stated, “Give me so much convince it will lead me to an early death.”

Let’s draw this conversation back to one of the updated purposes of WildernessPunk, which is to explore possibilities, leading people toward a more nature based life, even when living inside an urban environment.

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As a culture, we have rejected the natural and the physical in return not only for convince, but also for time. I could ride my bike to the store, but it will save me time if I drive, I could wash my clothes in the sink, but it will be so much faster if I toss them into a washing machine. I could work on finishing the end table I was building, but I just added three more channels to my cable plan and I wanted to check out…

In each of the situations above, we have traded money, natural resources, and increased our carbon footprint, while forsaking activities which would help us burn off some calories.

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Of course, other things contribute to health issues and being overweight. Diets are huge. I’m sure if I quit drinking ale and caffeine, I’d be trimmer, but I don’t want to piss Dionysus off. I might touch on such things in the future, but not today. Instead I stand here, next to my wheels. A blessing… it will help me get my children, maybe get a better job… but perhaps a curse. Will I lose another of my ideals and slip ever more into the mainstream, using more resources, and watching my gut grow?

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How can we balance our desires to be an outstanding human against the ease of being accepted into a society full of assumptions, many of which are half mad?

Perhaps we could look at our bodies like a yardstick measuring how well we accomplish our goals. Sure, if you are a twenty-two-year-old, powerlifter with a high metabolism, this might not apply to you, but you’re also not reading this. But for most of us who wish to respect the Earth as much as we can, live in a healthy manner, and be productive, our body could help us measure how well we’re doing.

Maybe I can give electricity a rest and do a few things myself, ride to the store, and spend some of my free time going on a hike, but what if my positive habits slow down? If I have junk on me, it most likely means I’m making more junk for my world. If I’m doing well, my body will notice, I’ll feel better, and be treating my world with greater respect. But if I’m getting some junk in the WildernessPunk, perhaps it’s time to rethink my game and leave that car parked all weekend.

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You can grab some of my fiction here, which I promise has nothing to do with this, Hell, my hero is a cop, go figure.

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Dionysus Cash

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Jan
02

Genre:  Science Fiction

Publisher:  California Coldblood

Published: 2014

Reviewer Rating:  3.5 Stars

Reviewer:  Michael D. Griffiths

 

The Odds by, Robert J. Peterson

 

The Odds by, Robert J. Peterson is a Science Fiction novel set in the distant future where the desert of Nevada is a few hundred degrees during the day and a well below freezing at night. However, the temperature is the least of most people’s worries in this dystopian world full of mutants, poverty, and chaos. The one thing distracting the populace from their poor circumstances is the gambling ruled over by a powerful elite known as The Odds.

Despite the potential for gloom this world holds, Eldritch maintains an upbeat nature. This is made only more extraordinary considering how much cash he owes to various Odds. He tries to get himself out of the hole by joining a complex game of murderous chess, where the pieces are living players and are forced to fight to the death each time they are placed within the same square.

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Things get more complicated when he finds there are people he knows and cares about also signed up for the game. Add to this, betrayals and the need to fight through an army of mutant Breens and our hero is hard pressed to make it through the game alive.

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An issue I do have with the novel is it claims to be “A Post-Apocalyptic Action Comedy.” I can give it the first two with ease, but although light-hearted, considering the death and doom afoot, I did not find it all to comic. There were moments and again, it is a cheery novel, but I think calling it a comedy is a bit of a stretch. It also felt a little green. Strong inventive ideas and a fun world, but the writing could be tighter.

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I have already mentioned many of the novel’s upsides. It is a fun read. Might be good for a long airplane flight or a vacation. Calling it action packed would be an understatement. You do not have to wait long for the next battle as Eldritch struggles to survive. Character development is well done with the protagonist and you want him to come through this adventure with all his limbs intact.

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Dec
21

Matt, Galen, and David are sharing a happy hour ale in a pub.

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David: “Wow, check out the woman who just walked in. She’s gorgeous.”

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Matt: “Dude, you better not let her hear you talking like that. She’ll be pissed.”

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Galen: “Yeah, woman hate to be called pretty and stuff. Strangely, they hate being called ugly too.”

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David: “I’m not stupid. I know enough to never complement a woman in any way, especially not her looks. Sheesh. But how should I try to talk to her?”

Matt: “You have to go up and talk to her like you have no interest in her sexually, you know, like if you were just talking to a dude.”

Galen: “Dudes don’t wear dresses like that. She’s hotter than a crack pipe in Vegas.”

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David: “Yeah, but I wouldn’t just leave my friends to go talk to some random dude at the bar no matter how sexy their dress was. How can I let her know she interests me without acting like I’m interested in her sexually?”

Matt shrugs: “No idea, why do you think I’m hanging out with you knuckleheads?”

Galen. “Don’t look at me, my girlfriend broke up with me because she said I sexualized her during sex.”

David: “Well screw it. I miss having a girlfriend.”

Galen: “I like women too. They’re soft and smell like flowers.”

David: “I’m just going to do it. Wish me luck.”

Matt gazes into his drink: “Yeah you’re going to need it.”

 

Scene II

 

David approaches the woman at the bar.

David: “Hi there, I’m David.”

Woman: “Do I know you?”

David smiles: “Not yet.”

Woman: “If I don’t know you, why are you talking to me?”

David: “Maybe I’d like to get to know you.”

Woman: “What, you want to pretend to be friends, crack some jokes, and try to charm your way into my bedroom. I’m not just here for your entertainment, that’s what our glowing rectangles are for.”

David: “No, I ah, hey looks like you need another drink, let me get it for you.”

Woman: “What are you saying, I can’t afford a drink and need a man to provide for me? Or are you hoping to use drugs to lower my defenses, so you can take advantage of me?”

David: “No, I’m just… Sorry to bother you.”

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After returning to the table, David takes a sip of his drink.

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Matt: “So how did it go?”

David: “I don’t want to talk about it. Does your Netflix account still work? Let’s just head to your place and watch a movie.”

Matt: “Dude, I actually got Halo XXXXVII. It kicks ass. You can kill like two hundred people in a minute.”

Galen: “You guys have fun. I just got pinged from by booty call ‘Hump Em’ and Dump Em’ page. I’m getting laid in a few hours.” Looking at his phone. “I’m glad there’s still someplace where you can meet girls.”

 

Scene III

 

Woman at bar is joined by her friend.

Katie: “How’s it going, Nanc?”

Nancy: “Not to well. You’d think I’d be getting some attention by wearing this new dress, but all the men here just want to treat me like I’m just a woman they’d want to have sex with. I’m just going to go home and check my Tinder. Maybe another meaningless one-night stand will cheer me up.”

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Dec
09

What do you need to be Happy, is it out of your reach, or did you read the WP Pleasure article and ensure you have fun every day?

But what defines Happiness?

I’m sure there are as many answers as there are different people. However, folks with an anthropological bent, such as myself, seek to find common threads, which if tugged, help us reach to the truth of the human condition.

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Things turn us on and other things turn us off, but again are there themes or archetypes which connect us as a species? Still, what it is which makes most of us happy? Like Mr. Terrence said in The Shining, “You pour them, and I’ll knock them back, Lloyd”

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  • Unhappiness

 

Perhaps the key to finding happiness is also defining what creates unhappiness. Again, what makes me unhappy might not affect another person as much or maybe even be a good thing. My reaction to finding a snake in the wild would be a lot different than a person with a serpent phobia. I have long said, when seeking a mate, the absence of qualities you find annoying in the other person, is nearly as important as having similar tastes.

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  • Possessions

 

Some would say prosperity is the key to happiness and the person with the most toys wins. Research does not back this up. More money leads to more spending and only moving out of poverty and into the lower economic class tends to make people feel better. So nope, despite what this country encourages, money won’t buy contentment, although it can sure help to make your weekend BBQ a whole lot better.

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  • Variety

 

For many of us, repetition is a bad thing and maybe the type of occurrence which could, over time, drive you mad. Same street, same, job, same task, same building, same clock I’m staring at while hoping part of my life passes by faster. Yet, we should also consider some people find peace within the known. Familiar walls deliver comfort for most of us. We like being warm and safe, I can tell, for most of the world sacrifices vast possibilities for such things.

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Like most things in life, Law and Chaos rests on a bell curve. Too much of the same every day and we’ll feel useless, like something which is little more than an organic machine fulfilling a role. Another could step in a do the same thing. Nothing is special and new. Where Chaos can be exciting and hip, full of promise, mystery, and adventure, it can also ruin lives and throw things into a spiral. Too much variety can water things down to the point where nothing gets focused on or completed.

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Yet where does happiness fit on this curve? Although predictably reduces stress, it can also reduce joy. Think of the best times in your life. Did they happen on some weird Thursday at work or where they during your trip overseas or when you got stuck in the mud during a wild camping trip? Perhaps it was the first time you saw a new mate and they threw your life a massive curve ball and nothing remained the same. I’m going to just come out and say it, overall Chaos leads to those spikes of happiness, but a certain amount of Law allows us to stay alive long enough to get to enjoy them.

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  • Friends

 

What’s the good of doing most of the positive things in life, if you can’t share them with someone? Sometimes you aren’t near family, but even if you’re currently single or with someone, having good friends can be what it’s all about. Yes, when you have a lover you can be more intimate with them, perhaps tell them things your friends might never know, but let’s face it, in this life, for most of us, our friends outlast our relationships. I’ve been married and divorced twice, but still have great friends I’ve know long before I met my first X Mrs. Bone.

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Great friends are like good time multipliers. You take something great and for each awesome buddy who shows up the good times are increased by 21%. Yep, 21%, everyone knows that. Friends can also keep the glooms away or get you back on the right track in life. Oh and FYI, in my opinion the best things to do with friends is roll with them out of town, camping, road trips, vacations… one of the best things life can offer.

 

  • Family

 

Yeah sure, we often belly ache about them, but no one else can share the entire span of your life as well with you. There’s something special about being able to go back to early childhood with someone, because face it, those could end up being our happiest years.

Then, when you’re a parent, whole new vistas of love and happiness open for you. Just seeing the joy in your children’s faces… excuse me, I gotta go get a tissue.

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  • Mates

 

Is there anything better than the happy glowing feeling you get when you’re with the right person? It can burn so intense you can barely breath and just pace around your abode chanting their name—mixed with praises. There’s also the calm reassurance a person has your back and likes you enough to get naked and wet with you. Yep, makes me happy.

 

  • Soft Cheese

 

Bloody Mary wanted me to remind everyone about soft cheese. Sometimes just treating yourself and maybe a few other people, well, it’s just good. I think the message here, is allow yourself a little Dionysus and share it with others who you care about.

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I could go on, but people might get annoyed because I’m being so damn cheery and I might have to change this from WildernessPunk to the UrdanHappyHunk. Don’t worry, I’ll get back to my grumpy rants next time. I also have a new project I might be busting out with soon, just in time to share a sacrilegious X-mess with my nine fans.

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You can grab some of my fiction here, which I promise has nothing to do with this, Hell, my hero is a cop, go figure.

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Bone's Cave Beer

Nov
26

Genre:  Horror

Publisher:  Samhain

Published: 2012

Reviewer Rating:  5

Reviewer:  Michael D. Griffiths

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Dead of Winter by Brian Moreland

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Dead of Winter, by Brain Moreland proved to be a real treat of me. Between liking horror more as Fall envelopes us and finding out Samhain Publishing has closed their doors, I dug out an older book from them and couldn’t be more pleased with the quality and even quantity of Moreland’s horror novel.

The novel takes place in the mid-1900 in Canada. Inspector Tom Hatcher needed new scenery after a long investigation into a cannibalistic killer led to his wife’s death and the villain’s hands.

He and his son travel to a remote outpost to see if he can solve similar cannibal attacks, which occurred at a different and more remote fur trapping fort. He discovers a horrid situation at the other fort and loses several people including his son. The cannibal plague is also brought back to his fort, but is controlled before it can take over.

After the loss of his son, Hatcher falls into a drunken depression, and only the care from a young tribal woman, who is almost a slave to the owner of the fort, is able to help him overcome. The tribe she is a part of considers what is happening to be caused by the evil Windigos, but the priest sent to aid Tom, believes they are sent by the devil. Add to this a doctor who is searching for a medical solution to for why normal people are becoming cannibalistic monsters and it is difficult to know what direction to turn. As eastern and western cultures collide, evil befalls the fort, and soon the killing and possessions began as allies slowly turn into foul twisted shapes.

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I enjoyed how in depth and intricate this story became. Different webs of connection were weaved through the characters, which created complex situations. The isolation they experienced built the level of terror. Uncertainty mixed with strong actions. Even without them knowing all the answers or causes, they fought to survive in any manner they could. Tom proved to be a strong character and his perseverance through his suffering moved me as a reader.

If you like horror, I can not see too many downsides here. It was a bit of a slaughter feast and Moreland appeared to feel the need to kill off almost every character he created. Tom is also treated brutally, but it made you want to him to rise above all the more.

So yes, it will get 5 Stars from me. Great book to start the real Fall down here in my desert home. Sad to see Samhain go with them putting out such fine novels. If you enjoy horror novels enough to buy them, add this to the top of your list.

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Windigo WW

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Nov
20

Introduction:

I’ve never been much of a political comic, I tend to leave such things to Zano, because even when I try to be hip and current, our political climate is changing so quickly, I can’t get it to work.

Case in point, I heard after being accused of trying to hit on a 14-year-old boy, Kevin Spacy came out of the closet and admitted he was a Republican. But this joke is already dated, thanks a lot Al Franken.

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So instead, I’ve decided to stick with what I know. Sex, Drugs, and Punk Rock and Roll.

 

Sex:

Okay, I just got out an eternity term relationship, so I haven’t bought condoms since most of the people reading this were in College. I should probably say Kindergarten, but I want to sound younger, you know, in case any hot chicks are reading this.

Do I go to Walgreens or a grocery store? Naw, what’s the fun in that after I noticed there’s a sex shop just a few blocks south of me. Yep, I live in a city again. So, I head over there on my bike, but I need to hurry, because I’m supposed to be meeting a client who will hopefully help support my slacker lifestyle and after the meeting, I was going to get help from camera man Greg… well, sleeping in a bus Greg, getting free beds from a little old lady, but that’s another story.

So yeah, busy day, I was in a hurry.

After heading past the male prostitute, who seemed to think he’d increase his business by heckling and insulting people as they left the store, I headed into the sex shop. The red lit room stretched before me filled with a huge assortment of videos, sex toys, and strangely—bongs. Never knew those were sex toys. I suppose you could put your…. Moving on.

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I’m so lost, I ask the guy behind the counter to point me toward the condoms. With a smile, he points to a place five feet in front of me. Smooth Boneman. I grab a bunch of different condoms. Seeing some lube, I figure what the hell, and grab a container too.

Right then, back of the bus, Greg calls. When he calls, three thoughts rifle through my head.

  • Who the hell calls any more, this must be important.
  • I need to make sure I get those free beds.
  • I usually don’t talk on my cell phone inside a store, let alone a sex shop, but damn…I had better answer this.

So, I answer, and he needs to know when we’re going to head to the little old lady’s house on the edge of the mountains. I answer, “Well, remember I’m meeting that guy later today, so I might be getting busy. Can we just do it tomorrow?” He says fine and I head up to the counter.

Once there, the guy is smiling at me and being really nice while he rings me up. He allowed a more effeminate tone to enter his voice while he tried to chat me up. “Alright, that will be five-fifty.”

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I look at the glowing numbers, then the guy, and then my items. The condoms alone were over twelve dollars. “Um, that seems like a good deal.”

After batting his eyes, he says, “I’m giving you all the condoms for free.”

“Okay…thanks…”

As I left the store and gave the male prostitute fifty cents, so he wouldn’t mess with me while I unlocked my bike, and pondered why the guy inside… then I remembered what I’d said aloud in the store. -“Well, remember I’m meeting that guy later today, so I might be getting busy.”-

Oh, so that’s why he was being so friendly. Screw it, twelve more bucks in my pocket and I got what I came for. There’s another joke there somewhere, but I’ll spare you.

 

Drugs:

I was staying outside the capital of Tunis, which is in the Muslim country of Tunisia. Two issues concerned me.

  • Due to Tunisia being a Muslim country, places where one could obtain ale and wine were rare and widely spaced, like the times I go without such things.
  • We were about to be heading due south into the middle of the Sahara.

I managed to get my step-brother, who worked for the US embassy, alone in his kitchen the day before we were due to start our trek. “If we’re about to head into the largest desert in the world, I would like to get some beer to take with me.”

“I have a few Guinness in my fridge you can have.”

“No, I don’t think that’s got going to cut it. I’d rather not go through DTs in the middle of the Sahara.”

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One awkward expression later, he agreed to take me to the only store in the entire country which sold beer and wine. We arrived at night and this place loomed large. I mean it was big, like twenty super Walmarts on steroids smoking crack, big. It was as if the country had but one giant store which embraced the international capitalistic concept, well, not as if, because that’s exactly what it was.

Upon entering, a certain wonderment fell over me, as I looked down aisles longer than Trump’s bankruptcy trials. I soon found myself lost and figured, I had better find the booze soon or I might need to drink half of it just finding my way back out of the store.

I discovered a small section which held only NA beer and right before I started to cry, I spotted a bunch of men armed with mismatched machine guns. Turning, I said aloud, “That must be where I need to go!”

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The men with rifles eyed me as I hurried into a small room. It size contrasted with the rest of the store. Where the building itself was so huge Godzilla would have to take a few smoke breaks along the way, before he’d find the time to destroy the whole thing, the inside of the booze room was maybe as big as my bathroom.

But my victory smile faded, when I saw silly baby six-packs of Becks, where the cans were smaller than Red Bulls. Ouch, I bought a few anyway. Nothing like a quick shot of beer while exploring the world’s largest desert. After adding a few bottles of wine to my basket, I hurried back to our hotel.

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Crushed Can of Beck's Beer.. Image shot 2013. Exact date unknown.

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Turns out the place we stayed had a full bar.

 

Punk Rock and Roll:

What’s the best type of punk show, besides what the girl with the purple mohawk showed you, the one where the band is playing in someone’s living room, of course. I was at just such a show in 1986 at 814 in Tucson Arizona. If I remember correctly, Blood Spasm opened up for the Day Glo Abortions. I’m probably wrong, but it sure sounds great.

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I was there with my brand new gilly, a little strawberry blonde, cute as a radioactive sunset, who loved punk rock more than her mom. Mr. Young started leaking enough blood from his mouth to make Gene Simmons jealous and a monster pit had started. Keep in mind, when a pit starts in a living room, it tends to get more serious. I bopped, bounced, and bore into the mass of whirling elbows and spilt beer for a few songs, but then noticed my wee GF was bouncing around more than a bit herself.

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I retreated to my gal and stood big and bouncing in front, while keeping the random falling punker from flying into her.

And then the room exploded into a mass of toxic fumes. My gut reaction was, holy fuk, the cops are here and tear gassed the place!

The front door lurked behind a mass of confused punkers and most of a band. Besides the cops would be right there. Thinking quickly, I flung a window up, grabbed my gilly, helped her into the side yard, and then dashed through myself.

Turns out it was just some duff from Minneapolis firing the fire extinguisher into the room. Still my little-punker-chick thought it was quite Stalwart of me to rescue her as I did.

Yeah, I got some that night.

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So perhaps I should just leave politics to Zano. I could keep up, but why bother, perhaps Sex, Drugs, and Punk Roll and Roll, is a better path. It’s worked alright for me so far. Oh, wait, maybe it ruined everything. Hmm. I’ll have to get back to you on this.

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Nov
18

Justice, slow in coming, many say it’s blind. Some believe in a cosmic balance, fate, karma, we reap as we sow…

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I call BS on the above. Like most things we have the power to observe, Justice is random, karma only occurs through Chaos happening to get it right sometimes. Of course, sometimes actions can channel fate. A man raping people’s daughters is more likely to be killed than the married guy selling you sliced cheese at Albertsons. Still there’s no guarantee, maybe cheese slicer cut his finger and walked by the crime scene and his blood splashed near the rolled up carpet with a lump in it. Justice is served.

Okay Boneman, tangent much?

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Wait, I have a point. Now I said Justice is random. This isn’t completely true. Even before the production of alcohol and religion created the need for cities and towns, tribes had rules, ethics, and morality. They might be looser to interpretation, but sometimes flexibility is a good thing. It isn’t too different today. Justice is usually more likely to be determined by the judge who’s picked, the jury present, and the price of the lawyer, more so than the man or woman who has their fate in their hands.

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Okay are you ready? Are you really ready? Sit back, take a deep breath, hold it. Lean forward and breath it out your nose.

I know you were raised to believe Laws exist to help us and are good morale binders. To bad they aren’t real. Let’s just ponder this shall we. I’ll pick on the USA, cuz, um, I live here. And here goes…

 

  • A few hundred years ago, not a single written law existed.

 

  • Someone didn’t trust his fellows, so he started to imagine all the ways he could control and punish them for doing anything he decided was wrong.

 

  • Religion helped, but has never been enough to really keep people in line, so officers were hired to do so. The people making the laws hired the officers and the officers enforced the rules they designed and put onto paper.

 

  • Now people who were caught breaking the laws, some other guy thought up and imposed on everyone, could have their freedom, currency, and even life taken away.

 

  • Many laws remain arbitrary and change constantly, proving they had no real moral necessity, longevity, or real justification. Examples include, laws regarding slavery, voting rights, alcohol laws, drug laws, dueling, rules against Tribal Americans…

 

  • A new wave of people coming to power also change laws, which again proves their arbitrary nature.

 

  • Many laws change from state to state. Not only does the law exist or not, but even similar laws have different punishments. So a person’s legal fate is determined by imaginary distinctions in land masses, which were made up, and no one can see.

 

I could go on, but I think you see the point. Laws are things thought up by mostly people who are now dead. Their legitimacy is drawn into question by their inability to stay constant over time or even over different parts of the same country. From officers to judge—personal choice, random chance, and ulterior motives alter outcomes, so that even within the same law, no two people are ever treated equally.

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So yeah, um… you wrote down the law. Yep, I see it printed there. It didn’t exist for 99.99999999999999999999% of human’s time here on earth and might be dismissed as nonsense or outdated in twenty years, but…  “Shut up, damn it, spend the night in jail and give me a bunch of your money.”

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Oh yeah and if you are rich enough, you don’t really have to worry about it.

Mostly these fines are made to help tax you for being naughty without the Ultra 1% having to say they created more taxes.

So what about Justice?

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It’s Law versus Chaos and Chaos always wins. Whether it is the entropy cracking your new driveway or you drawing the judge who hates you because you’re a *****, chaos rules everything. Law can fight back and control a little corner for a decade or two, but in the end Chaos tears it all away. Just ask the Romans.

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So light a candle and hope a dead man’s imagined rules will protect you through the dark night, but as with most made up ideals, Laws can hurt as often as they help, right Religion? If you don’t believe me, ask the guy getting beheaded for being gay, his overseers believe they are behaving without the bounds of decency.

Justice is served.

The only true law is the law of nature, which strangely most people in my country can avoid. The law of nature would say an out of shape, obese man cannot travel 10 miles when it’s 102 degrees. Oh wait, opps he can, because he can hop into his car and crack up the air conditioning.

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So screw it, we ignore the real laws and give lip service to fake crap some dead guy, I’d probably hate, made up out of nothing other than his prejudices, desire to control others, and motivations force them to follow his believe system. “I can’t trust these low-lives to be decent on their own, so I’ll make them bend the knee to what I decided is right.”

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In closing, I consider myself a just person. I really don’t get into too much trouble and I’m wicked pissa nice to most people I meet. I avoid crossing paths with criminals and cops, because I hate gangs. Yeah, I’m avoiding the net every day I can. The net sure is real when it catches you and you have to pay all sorts of prices, but like a boat full of animals which repopulated the earth, in the end it is all mostly made up crap which fades over time, and is about as moral as some of those holy books. An eye for an eye. Oh wait, maybe I should turn the other cheek. Or if you try to talk to me about the legitimacy of these imagined rules, you just might see both of mine while I moon you from the top of the mountain.

I’ll be up their talking to my burning beer bottle while writing up some new commandments for you. Hell, I heard anyone can do it.

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Alex of the Gods

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You can grab some of my fiction here, which I promise has nothing to do with this, Hell, my hero is a cop, go figure.

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11111

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Nov
10

Normal reality you are slipping, when you start Road Tripping.

Those of you who have been following WildernessPunk for a while will remember much of the original posting revolved around some serious Road Tripping across the grand old US of A. Whether you’re for or against this country, you have to love the environments contained within. We have more open land in some of our states than whole countries enjoy.

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Yet, besides a few exceptions, I’ve been much more grounded this year. This doesn’t have to be a bad thing, but travel does something for your soul. I think we should all remember it doesn’t have to be something super special or a big deal to help us bust out of our routine with knew sights and experiences.

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Case in point, I’m in Sierra Vista and having a great time just walking around and exploring the place and yep, it really isn’t too exciting here…so far.

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Why is this? Why does going to a different place, even one less excited then the one we just left, still do it for us? It is just not knowing what might be around the next bend, even though it’s likely to be a KFC? It is the chance to see new environments or maybe spy some animals? Perhaps meeting knew people just a little different than yourself might be the thing.

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Sometimes it obvious. Staying in Mexican Hat, nestled against the cliffs lining the San Juan river, with my father last year, well, obviously that experience was powerful. Some things are just going to be great. Going to Colorado for the first time, heading to Europe, yeah, somethings will just be an awesomeness no brainer, but what about the littler trips, which still raise your spirits and bring out a feeling of adventure in our souls even as we watch those around us going through their mundania?

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Worlds Largest Rose Bush, Tombstone Arizona

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Could the anonymity be part of it? “No one knows me here, how exciting. I could re-invent myself. I’m a man of mystery in this place.” This could be part of it, but if we live in a city or a town of any real size, we could roll all day and not see a single person we know, sometimes even when we want to. It could contribute, but naw.

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Maybe it’s not so much where we are, but what we’ve left behind. Maybe what we left behind is something ten times better then way we are. Nope, won’t be moving to Sierra Vista.  But this isn’t the point, maybe it is more of the trials and responsibilities we have left behind which have a hard time touching us. Let’s think about some things which cannot happen when we’re on the road or in a different place. This might not apply for every single person, but I’m making sweeping statements, it’s what I do. We’re all good at something. I’m good at sweeping statements and bumping my head.

 

  • Most of us won’t be working our normal jobs.

 

  • We aren’t doing our usual chores.

 

  • Many will not even be cooking or so much as picking a towel up off the floor.

 

  • No dropping the kids off at school or various social functions.

 

  • We leave our, “I’m too busy tos” behind and we can often catch up on goals and projects we never seem to have time for, even if it’s something as simple as reading a novel.

 

  • For the most part, there are no interruptions from spending time with loved ones and friends. No… “I’ll see you after work, school, or next weekend,” nope we’re in this together. This could be the best reason for a lot of us.

 

So don’t make a big deal about it. No need for weeks of planning or blowing half your paycheck. Just grab someone you care about and head out and discover a new place. A little adventure never hurts the soul, so happy Road Tripping my friends. And if you see me hitchhiking along the road, please slow down and pick me up or at least toss me a beer as you drive by.

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Boney

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You can grab some of my fiction here, which I promise has nothing to do with this, oh wait this one does.

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Beer Sunglasses

 

Nov
04

Yep, pleasure, we all like it, sometimes maybe too much. Pleasure gives us reasons to live, but in some cases, can also hurt or even cut our lives short, if we aren’t careful. Yet, like most things in life, there are many misunderstanding on the dichotomy between Pleasure and payback, as well as what Pleasure really is and what kind we could be striving for.

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When I say Pleasure, what comes to mind… good food, relaxing, when you’re in the middle of your favorite hobby, being with people you care about, drugs, sex? For some people finding pressure can be quite an elaborate process, whether you are spending nine hours trying to score your drugs or flying all day to visit Rome. For others it could be as simple as quick leftovers, so they can enjoy the new episode of The Walking Dead.

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But what really is pleasure and why do we want it? Also, why are some people searching for it more than others and in so many different ways?

First let’s discuss why we feel pleasure at all. Most aspects of any animal’s existence revolve around methods of keeping them alive and continuing the species. Not to quote Bear Grylls on purpose, but the first things we need to survive are shelter and food. We might not feel like we’re having pleasure sitting under a lean-to in the rain, but we’re enjoying it a lot more than having the rain blast us. Food which tastes good is easier to eat and we’re more likely to do so. Both of these motivations for a more pleasant experience in life are likely to keep us above ground.

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Still, after a while, we rush through meals and for most of the folks reading this, you’re used to having a roof over your head to the point you don’t notice it much. It has become a given. If someone was going to ask you what you intended to do for fun this weekend, I doubt you would say, “I’m going to enjoy not being exposed to the elements and make sure I don’t become malnourished.”

As with much of life, Humanity has evolved beyond these baser animal needs, or at least us lucky privileged few have. This evolution has also affected what we desire. In the land of plenty, there are more and more options. We will do many things this weekend and most likely about 90% of your activities, if not more, will be things it would have been impossible to do a hundred years ago. We might see a movie, try some new ethnic foods, go wind surfing, fly over the Grand Canyon, or drive out to explore some place a hundred miles away.

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Let’s look at the difference between our base, perhaps Pleasure driven survival needs, and what we’ve become. Some things always make me want to laugh. We have a thousand layers of perfected manners and political correctness, but no matter how evolved we might like to imagine ourselves, sex drives us crazy. We want sex, need sex, will do anything for it… or will we? “No, I’ve risen above such base needs, I respect the opposite gender and, oh fuck it, just nail me!”

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I know, I’m crass, but am I wrong and what might evolving past such needs mean? Oh, now I can just find my splinter group of weirdness online or use phone aps for dating. I’m so advanced. Hell, back in the old days you had to go out and meet people to have sex. What fools.

We could talk about sex all night, or well I could, but let’s move on, my step mom might be reading this.

Food and shelter has lost all semblance of anything approaching reality.  Some of the poorest people in this country, might have air conditioning or central heating which puts them centuries ahead of most of the wealthiest individuals who have lived for the last 6000 years. I could be close to dead dog broke, but still grab some shrimp tonight if I wanted. Could 99.9999% of humanity have done that since, err, the dawn off…humanity?

In our current state, Pleasure has been elevated to an unneeded extent. “Oh, I feel like ice cream and darn there are only 80 styles of choose from. Perhaps I’ll pick from thousands of streaming movies while I sit on my expanding ass.”

We think about pleasure killing us. “Three people will die from opiates before this program is complete,” but despite how horrible some types of drug addictions are, can they even hold a flicking candle in the rain to how many people die from obesity related causes? I’ll just say it, if you’re dishing on meth users when you watch television over four hours a day and are fifty pounds overweight, you can eat a big fuck you sandwich. I’m not in favor of meth, but if you think you can stand on some high horse, you need to readjust your thinking.

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It wouldn’t be too hard to argue our evolution in Pleasure is killing many of us and again I would think obesity more than kicks drug use in taking the most people down. But extreme sports, driving drunk, relationships, and letting a good night lead you into the wrong environment, can also become a way where the pursuit of happiness takes you out.

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Perhaps we should look toward what our real purpose in life might be. Are we like the drummer in Spinal Tap…? “Have a good time, all the time.” Should life be a Dionysian attempt to have fun each day? Well, um, yeah. Still many of us have children and responsibilities. But why have kids if they aren’t fun. You have fun with your kids, right? Yes.

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Pleasure doesn’t need to be something we build up to some grand vision. If taking your kids out for pizza is fun, then have at it. If you’re single and feel the need to get some snuggle, good luck to you. Maybe some other guy wants to eat some of those happy mushrooms and run around in the woods, just watch out for cliffs and cactus buddy. Perhaps all you want to do is watch a little Stand Up at home on a Saturday Night.

I’m certainly not going to dictate what’s right and wrong in our pursuit of Pleasure, but might have to quote a little Crowley, “Do as thou Wilt, as long as it hurts none.” Still we all need to keep in mind, to be careful when judging how others might be finding their own joy. Religion followers should not come down on gays because being with someone of the same sex is how they find fulfillment and perhaps gays shouldn’t come down on people who feel more complete and safe because they convinced themselves some deity watches over them. Who is anyone to judge another? When is really comes down to it, none of us know much about why we’re really here. Hell, maybe homosexually is a progressive evolutionary leap, but then again, maybe there could be a Christian God.  Personally, I don’t think so, but I could be wrong, because, I’m just a silly human. What do I know?

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I talk about Yig a bit on these pages, but when it comes to pleasure, Dionysus holds the cornucopia of desire on high. So, let me end with this. The other day Dionysus appeared to me in the guise of a burning wine bottle and said, “The secret of life is to have some fun and do something you like every day.” Pretty simple, but then again, simple things give me Pleasure.

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new-london

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You can grab some of my fiction here, which I promise has nothing to do with this, oh wait this one does.

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Skinjumpers

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Oct
29

Genre:  Science Fiction

Publisher:  Titan Books

Published: 2017

Reviewer Rating:  3 Stars

Reviewer:  Michael D. Griffiths

 

The Beauty by Aliya Whiteley is a strange sort of Science Fiction. Original and odd, this story takes you in an unexpected u-turn within the first few chapters and then just keeps getting more bizarre.

The Beauty by Aliya Whiteley

The tale starts as we follow Nate, the local story teller, for a future dystopian society. He needs to do what he can to keep up the morale of his small village, since a deadly plague has killed all the females on the globe.

Later he is captured by a biped female like creature made from fungus. After weeks of terrified imprisonment, he breaks down and has sex with the thing. Soon after, he gets released and every man in the village gets his own fungus beast, which Nate calls The Beauty.

Some men find the sex better than nothing, but many resist The Beauty. Soon violence begins as The Beauty start to alter the forms of the men who fail to resist their desires.

This story may be one of the more original tales I have read in a while, but it has a few downsides. First and foremost, this is not a novel, but more of a novella. It is padded with a second short story, which has three blank pages between every chapter. It just leaves me thinking, ‘Hell, I wish I could get one of my longer short stories published as a novel.’ It also leaves the story undone. Instead of finishing the journey we start out on, we are just left with a Twilight Zone ending and feeling like we watched a thirty-minute show. Also, I like a little perversion as much as the next guy, but this got to be much more gross than sexy.

Again, very unique and well thought out, but not really my thing. I might have given it a lower grade if it was not so original. I have to give some props for that.

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Grab some of my Fiction Here

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Bone Bush

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