Well, that's it. All ten part are out, and this will be the last post to this blog (probably).
State of Change is now available as a single pdf document here, laid out as an A5 document to simulate a mass market paperback - print it out two pages per sheet and it'll be just like a proper book!
If you want to read it online the links, in order, are:
Part One: The Fear
Part Two: The Offer
Part Three: A Bit Like A Lobotomy
Part Four: The New Direction
Part Five: The Silver Machine
Part Six: Body Fuck/Mind Fuck
Part Seven: Psychedelic Super Nazis
Part Eight: Cuba Street Improv
Part Nine: The Not Quite Death of Arlo Makepeace Dylan
Part Ten: The End
I hope you enjoy it. Feel free to leave a comment and tell me what you think.
In the meantime, I'm continuing with my regular blog at Pointless Philosophical Asides and so maybe I'll see you there!
Sunday, 11 July 2010
QUESTIONS PRESENTED THEMSELVES IMMEDIATELY
Is this the afterlife? If so is it heaven or hell? Maybe it was some strange ethnic afterlife I didn’t know about?
I found I could range across my memories at will. I moved up and down the stream of my life examining each moment in detail to see if there was any clue as to what this was supposed to b about. My younger years yielded little that was any use: painful lessons in the obvious, gradual discovery of the basic facts of life: dog eats dog, possessions make you powerful, lust fuels endeavour - the usual stuff.
There seemed little to learn from the revolution either, primarily a picaresque tableaux of sexual and violent excess. Now I had no body I couldn’t feel the pleasure and pain that this period of my life seemed built around, but the raw data was all there on the sense track for dispassionate consideration..
At university, my studies yielded slightly more of interest but memory of them, in both backward and forward versions, was sketchy. My courses had been mainly practical and non-assessed, so I never bothered much with the theory. Then I began working at the Ministry, for several years the memories were very incomplete: many were lost, corrupted and fouled by, I must assume, the drugs I was taking.
THIS COULDN’T BE THE AFTERLIFE
I was still alive, I could tell. Something nagged at me from very near the end of my life. Manisola, talking to me, trying to tell me something very important. “There’s something else I found out, about the device."
Sunday, 4 July 2010
AT THE FLAT
There was no sign of Chrissy, but Bobby was in the lounge, robot on the floor, outline shimmering like a vibrating string on a cello. This was something I’d only heard about: Frohedadrine, JJ-180 as it was known.
Frohedadrine had been developed by Hazeltine Corporation in the States before the revolution, its development sponsored by the UN for reasons that had long since been forgotten. It was widely regarded as the most dangerous drug ever invented, and was totally banned, even by Hazeltine itself. It was instantly addictive and addiction led inevitably to death in a couple of months, the drug reacting corrosively on the microtubules of the brain cells. Some people, and Bobby was obviously one of them, regarded the hit as worth the burn-time. The drug apparently transported the taker in time, sending them into the past or the future, depending on the dosage and method of administration. I say “apparently” because there was no definite evidence that the user actually travelled in time. There was enough doubt, however, to have the drug suppressed with extreme prejudice.
How Bobby got hold of it, I’ve no idea.
Sunday, 27 June 2010
MY IN-TRAY WAS STACKED
with a load of new referrals which I dutifully signed, stamped and passed to my out-tray. The more interesting-sounding ones I reserved for more testing, leaving the paper-work in my middle tray that I had comically named my Shake-It-All-About-tray. These were the drugs that I’d take out on the streets, publicising them at the same time as I gauged the reaction of the sceners who’d take them, deciding whether they were worth putting money into. I got through this in a few minutes and spent a little while relaxing, doing nothing in particular, shuffling things about on my desk, putting paperclips in my stationery tray, that sort of thing. I fluffed around on the media for a while, and checked the office media to see how the CEO was doing. A little vid-window showed Richard was casually operating on him, throwing out organs that displeased him, sewing in strangely shaped bits of machinery and faux-flesh as required.
I was no medicine man, but even I could see that a lot of Richard’s surgery was unnecessary. He was gifted, sure, and I know that the Medical Journal gave his every operation rave reviews, but he was rather eccentric, and, personally speaking, eccentricity was the last thing I wanted noodling around inside my body.
AS I WATCHED, THE BLUE GUY
superimposed himself over the gory scene. “Hello, Dylan.” I ignored him, he’d caused me enough trouble all ready. “No one can see me but you, it’s safe to talk.”
“Metzger,” I entered my private directory, where I knew I’d be safe from prying lines, and Manisola the Teacher followed me there.
Sunday, 13 June 2010
I WENT TO MY DESK
And tried to formulate a business plan for my beggars agency, but couldn’t get it to work out. It sounded too much like a political manifesto, a pathetic welfarist cry for tolerance that failed to match the intensity of my kerb-side epiphany minutes before.
A pile of new magazines had accumulated on my desk, flotsam gathering in a rock pool, but I couldn’t bring myself to look at them. On the media, Katy’s murder hardly rated a mention. A feed from some hack-at-the-scene dwelt on Arthur’s recordings of the event (it seemed he’d stayed in circuit around the car park to get the denouement on disc). No one had claimed the body. Katy had (like most of the school kid rebels) murdered most of her family during the revolution and, being an independent, there was no-one to take the body away and give it a decent burial. I immediately patched a claim into the media, bumping a ghoul from a necro-bar off the top of the list with a more legitimate claim: we’d once been exclusive lovers, after all. I could probably cover the cost myself, but maybe the Ministry would pay, just to have her cremated, didn’t have to be anything big. We could use it, after all fold it into this illumination plotline.
Then my set went blank: the mainframe was down.
Sunday, 6 June 2010
I HAD A QUICK DRY CLEAN AND CHANGED
into skin tight black leggings, the old faithful monster boots, red silk polo neck shirt, black kid driving gloves with golden demon rings - my Satan-S identity.
In those days, before we advanced across the electronic frontier, there were many more bodies and many more mouths to feed them. Accordingly, there were many restaurants and meat joints to shovel food into those mouths and they came and went with the all the endurance of mayflies as the fickle diners of the city flitted from one to another on the ineffable zephyr of the zeitgeist. I slipped on my set and hooked into the restaurant gallery: Café Economique was rated highly, so I tagged it and set the car to go. It was in the basement of a dilapidated old government building at the bottom of the Terrace and the name was some sort of joke which I didn’t quite get (just like the “Backbencher” on Molesworth - I’d thought it was some sort of joke about the arena, but there were pictures of old fashioned men and women in suits and stuff - I just don’t get it). It had never attracted a regular clientele in the eight months since opening and had been starved of the publicity that a regular scene can generate, so I was surprised to see it rating highly. When I got there I understood what had happened: it had re-done itself andy-style: cold steel, pink and blue neon, lots of black paint. A stage had displaced the tables by the kitchen door and two naked andies writhed around to their tuneless, rhythmless music.
Sunday, 30 May 2010
I SAW RICHARD OVER BY THE MEAT
picking through some of the offal, occasionally holding up a shred of red flesh and examining it more carefully. I caught his eyes and gestured for him to come over, not wishing to stand too close to the bloody pile that was absorbing his interest. He smiled at me and obliged.
“Hello, Dylan. Didn’t expect to see you here. Look at this.” He waved a strip of gore in front of my face. “See?” He pointed out some detail that I chose not to focus on. “Some strange Metzger’s tinkering with the wannabes, I reckon. You don’t see that too often.”
“Oh, really, fascinating. Look, I’d like to talk about the Janus for a minute.”
Richard looked around surreptitiously then put the little piece of flesh into his belt bag. “Sure, go ahead.”