Friday, March 26, 2010

I'm afraid that the hypothalamus will be quite operational when your friends arrive

Today I decided that I should study a little bit for my mathematical biology class. I'm going over past midterms and looking at questions and things are going alrightish and then part of a question asks me this

" Sketch a typical nerve cell showing the soma, axon, dendrites, and presynaptic terminals. What is a space-clamped experiment? Explain in what sense a nerve axon is excitable "

No. Just no. Seriously? Fuck you. The "mathematical" part of this course is hard enough without you throwing a straight-up biology question at me. I mean, I understand that it's called Math Biology but why the fuck should I be able to sketch a nerve cell? That doesn't have anything to do with the mathematics. I know that a nerve measures the amount of electric potential coming into the cell and if that amount goes higher than a certain value (the action-potential), the nerve shoots out a bunch of electricity. I imagine it as looking like this.

Dendrites (fingers) sum electric potential coming into the neuron (Palpatine). It diffuses to the soma (bad guy cloak). If it exceeds a threshold level or fails to turn to the Dark Side, the neuron (Palpatine) produces a short electrical spike (fucking lightning bolts) which is conducted along the axon (Luke Skywalker). I am pretty sure this is how the human body works. 

The reason I know all these fun facts about nerve cells is because I NEED to know them to understand how the model works. What I don't need to know/really don't give a fuck about is:

1. What a nerve cell looks like
2. What it's different body parts are
3. What body part does what
4. Whether or not nerves are actually just microscopic Emperor Palpatines having temper tantrums inside of my body.

Here's a fun comparison: I wrote a paper that was heavily concerned MATHEMATICALLY with bunny rabbits dying and being born. I could not, however, draw for you a diagram of a bunny rabbit's sexybits even though sexybits are pretty important for rabbits to get born. Why can't I do this? Because it is completely unrelated to what I need to know.

Now it's time for things to get really messed up. My final is worth 100% of my mark in that course and it consists of three questions. Drawing a nerve cell would only be part of a question. But even if it's only worth one sixth to one third of a question, that's still 5%-10% of my final mark.

It's a good thing remembering diagrams and then drawing and labelling them is super-easy else I'd be even more pissed off than I am now.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

I keep them in a suitcase under my bed

I always lost time on the walk from work to my girlfriend's flat. If someone asked me for directions there, I probably couldn't give them because I was always too far gone. I can never remember how I got there or how I got home; it just happened.

Today when I arrived there was no answer. The door was unlocked and I wandered in. Everything was gone. Everything. There was no mess, no pictures, no furniture - even the stain from the bottle of wine we knocked over when we first made love was gone.

I should have known this would happen one day, should have seen this disappearing, and should have been part of it. She always talked about it and I always put it down as simple fantasizing - the kind we all dream about for comfort.

Instinctively I pulled out my phone to call her, to maybe catch her at the last second and join up. Instead, I just deleted her. Who goes through the trouble to clean out their flat and then doesn't ditch their cell at the bottom of a dumpster? The first tear started down my cheek

An empty flat is the best place to be alone in. For a few hours I stayed and was just that - completely alone with my mind, thinking one thing the entire time: She was gone.

Eventually, I had to leave. I did still have a life - even though I didn't want it anymore and would leave it just to find her. Stepping into the hallway, I took a deep breath to relieve myself of the death of her flat and saw the number on the door across from hers: 215.

Upstairs, I knocked. She answered.

"Grab only the things you need most", I said, "we're disappearing".

Monday, March 8, 2010

Ban the Belts

I usually put stories and other sort of things that I think as being more towards the properly entertaining end of things on Facebook and leave this for more 'ideas/thoughts I sortof had' because it's more fun than entertaining people but I'm pretty sure I would lose friends if I put this on Facebook or at the very least would have to answer awkward questions - awkward for the people asking them at any rate - and that does not sound like much fun.

At any rate, I wrote this in my head over the course of a couple different aeroplane trips I took. Enjoy, I-I hope, or at least try to remember that this is funny. I FIND IT HILARIOUS SO HA!

“And of course there’s Dominic Delong”, the pilot started to tell to his green navigator. He always told stories like these over long flights to his crew – or anyone who would listen really. One time he even told stories over the intercom, from London to Moscow, but the reprimand he received upon landing was enough to knock that idea away from him permanently.  “It was worth it”, he reminisced before continuing the story,

“ Dominic was a travelling salesmen, one of the oldest and most prolific. He’d been travelling all over the world selling his services to anyone who needed them since before you were even born. Every now and then you’d see him on your flight. All the pilots knew Dominic or at least could pick him out of the crowd because he really did fly that often. Never more than one night in any city, I figure, for at least 30 years straight. Of course, it’s not like it was hard to pick him out of a crowd. All that travelling had reduced his wardrobe to two worn and dirty dress shirts, a pair of slacks and this ridiculous colourful woollen vest that he wore every day, regardless if he was in Tahiti or Montreal. He was a fairly pleasant fellow but it was never easy to have a chat with him, he was always going, couldn’t ever stay just in one place and would hop around impatiently whenever he wasn’t moving anywhere. Those red, glazed over perma-morning eyes that every traveller gets was invented by Dominic, I think. He never looked any other way than as if he’d just woken up but he’d zoom about, impatient to get where he was going and always wanting to be three or four countries ahead of where he was. 

Slowly, as the years wore on and people started realizing how dangerous an aeroplane could be, more and more security measures started getting put in which meant more and more waiting for Dominic. Soon he had to start showing up at the airport hours before he left when all his life he’d always shown up five minutes before the plane went and he’d never missed a single flight. Nothing irritated him like waiting. Security beefed up more and more and he had to answer the same questions every day, many days more than once and in different languages too. Of course, he never bothered to learn any other language but just memorized the answers to each question and got by on that. Sometimes, the security would screw around with Dominic. They all knew who he was, everyone knew who he was. To be honest, it was kinda funny to see him get so frustrated over getting held up just a little bit.

Anyways, one day security is messing with Dominic and he misses his flight. His face goes bright red and he starts swearing and yelling at everyone so security jumps at this opportunity and decides to teach him a lesson. Four people grab Dominic and drag him into this little white perfectly sterilized room in the corner of the airport. It’d blind you to look at this room it’s so white and clean. So, they throw Dominic onto the only piece of furniture in the room, a table, and then they start stripping off his clothes. They gotta search him cause he’s dangerous they say. First comes off that colourful vest which just sets him off even angrier cause I suppose it had some emotional quality to it which is why he wore it all the time; then the shirt and the slacks come off so he’s wearing just this old pair of underwear which is barely there at all. It’s so worn that you can see-through it, the elastic’s all stretched out and useless and the thing is just full of holes. Security doesn’t even need to take these off, they just tug and the thing falls apart – practically disintegrates. 

Then they bend him over, snapping on those gloves, getting ready to give him the ol’ scissor and twist when they start hearing this grunting coming from Dominic. At first they think he’s just getting angrier with them and has gone past the point of making words but then they see he’s grabbed hold of his throbbing cock and is just beating away furiously. Veins are bulging all over him, face and neck and arms and especially his cock which looks like it could explode for all the blood flowing through it. Security just shrugs this off –   these guys have seen the weirdest shit and it’s more common than you’d think for someone to get off to a strip search. So, being the pro’s they are, they start focusing again on his rear. With fingertips just an inch away from his ass, Dominic starts talking, low in a breathy whisper in between grunts, “If – unh – you lot – hnf – are gonna jerk – ohn – me around – hah ah ah – then  I figure – mmf – that I might – ooh – as well – ahh – jerk me around too”.

This pissed security right off. Some homo getting his jollies was nothing they hadn’t dealt with before but Dominic was almost literally cockslapping each one of them in the face. Fingers were rammed aggressively into Dominic’s asshole and out of his cock shot a huge sticky wad that arced majestically through the air and hung endlessly at the peak before landing almost invisibly in the center of that sparkling clean white room.  Everything stopped for a second as everyone stared at the contamination and then security ordered Dominic to put his clothes on and get the hell out of the room.

Oddly, Dominic was far from being pissed off about the whole situation. Even that flight he’d missed which had him all worked up was a distant memory. He’d just had easily the best orgasm of his life. Now, there’s something you’ve gotta understand about Dominic. With all the travel he did he’s never had time for meeting a girl really and so, over the years to compensate for that he’d been spending every night with the best whores money could buy; whores from all over the world. You name a country and there’s a fair chance that Dominic has fucked one of their whores. Sometimes I think that the reason Dominic travelled so much was because he couldn’t make up his mind which whores from which parts he liked best. After all that though, somehow, somehow some fat balding pudgy fingered arrogant security guard had given him the best orgasm he’d ever had. He was hooked.

Soon he started going into airports with a little plastic baggie of sugar shoved up his ass and then just a little piece of raw meat in there with it. Security dogs would be all over his ass and time and time again he’d get hauled into that little purified white room and jerk himself silly till the police found that little baggie of sugar and had to let him go when they found out he wasn’t smuggling drugs.”

“So what happened to Dominic?”, asked the green navigator.

“Well, as far as I know”, began the pilot but the cockpit door swung open and two men wearing balaclavas and brandishing their belts burst into the cockpit. One of them swung at the navigator, the buckle hitting him square in the temple and knocking him unconscious to the floor. The other wrapped his belt around the neck of the co-pilot and squeezed till it looked as though the co-pilot’s eyes would pop right out of his skull and a vein on his forehead grew sickly large, throbbing with an ever weakening pulse.  

“ All they used were belts, some of them with beltbuckles, huge beltbuckles. They could knock you unconscious in one swift whip and they did it to the people who didn’t co-operate or didn’t take them seriously. Belts... that’s all it took”. 
­ – ­Passenger 144 sole survivor of Flight 161 Chicago

“In light of recent events”, began Chip Harris, assistant-magistrate to the Committee for Air Safety and Inspection and president of OxyGo, the company that makes those little plastic-bags-with-mouthpieces that fall from the overhead in the event of an incident, “I think we need to reconsider our list of contraband items”. Words escaped his huge guffawing wrinkled jowls in a slow thin drawl and caterpillar eyebrows wriggled up and down as he spoke.

The emergency meeting of the Committee for Air Safety and Inspection was called by Chip himself and so he held the floor. The rest of the board, all self-important and pedantic like Chip, were unhappy about the arrangement; each one loathed him but wouldn’t dare admit it. Chip was just too important to cross.

“Now, over the past ten years we’ve put together quite the impressive list of dangerous items  for air travel but somehow, somehow”, his slow drawl lingered on the word as if it were a personal attack on his dignity that such a mistake had been made, “somehow we missed belts. For years we’ve long known the potential of a belt to be used as a weapon. Let’s be honest, what good parent hasn’t whipped their kid into shape with a belt once or twice; yet we somehow, perhaps naively, failed to realize the damage that could be done by terrorists weaponizing belts. Gentleman, we have no one but ourselves to blame for this travesty”.

The room nodded in grim agreement. Towards the back, a young skittish intern raised his hand,
“Couldn’t we blame the terrorists, s-sir?”

Chip froze and stared into the intern without any emotion before suddenly breaking into a laugh,

“Of course we could son. Couldn’t we blame the terrorists, HAW HAW”, Chip's eyebrow wiggled up and down when he laughed deep from his belly, " They did commit the crime, correct?".

The rest of the board looked nervously around, not wanting to answer – except for the intern,

"Well yes, how can we be expected to predict every single move that a terrorist will ever make. Or every crazy person for that matter. You don't have to have a political agenda to commit a horrible crime. The best we can do is just try to make it as hard as possible for these people to harm us and if they manage to find a way around, a new way to hurt us that we haven't thought of, well then there's nothing we can do about it. I understand that people have died and that it's horrible, but belts, really? That's ludicrous, how could anyone have foreseen this and even if they could, who would have gone along with banning belts before all this happened. You'd have been considered a paranoid loony".

Again the board looked nervously around. Chip slowly began walking around the table towards the intern.

"Well son, I never did think of it that way".

Halfway down the table he stopped and stooped over with difficulty to remove his shoes,

" They're always gonna find a way, that's what yer gettin' at right son? Well I suppose you're right about that".
Chip stopped behind the intern and placed his left hand on his shoulder. The board looked amongst each other stunned. The intern looked up at Chip in disbelief,

"I - really?".

"Well, yes son", replied Chip before he quickly raised his right hand and brought down the heel of his shoe into the side of the intern's head. There was an obedient silence from the board. The intern lay dazed on the floor for a second and struggled to pull himself up on all fours

"We couldn't know anymore about the terrorists using belts than you could know about me hitting you with my shoe", snarled Chip before striking the intern again with his shoe - this time catching him on the back of the neck where the spine meets the skull with a dull ‘THWOCK’. The intern dropped face first, sprawled out and moaning. Turning him over to look in his eyes, Chip brought his face right up to the intern's,

" We always need to be prepared. We let our guard down for one second and they win, son. Then our whole way of living is left broken and dying, much like yourself, and we absolutely cannot have that".
The shoe was brought down quickly three times in succession, blood spurted from the intern's face and little drops spattered vertically along the middle of Chip's torso.

"Well this is just far too messy", complained Chip, while the intern tried to plea but could only gurgle through his own blood. For a moment, Chip sat silently, head cocked to the side. The board watched in fear and silence. No one dared stop Chip now. Reaching down and pulling his socks from his feet, Chip tied them together and then wound them round the intern's neck.

"This is much easier", he remarked as he hoisted the intern's head up and pulled on the ends of his socks as hard as he could. The blood in the intern's mouth seeped out between his teeth and spewed outward as he tried to breath. His hands pulled at the socks pitifully and then they dropped as his eyes rolled into the back of his head.

Chip let the body drop, straightened his tie, and then resumed his place at the head of the table.

"Gentlemen, today has been a valuable learning experience".

The board nodded in agreement, unable to take their eyes off the brutalized body of the intern.

"Personally, after today, I'm of the thought that literally any article of clothing could be construed into a makeshift weapon. Wouldn't you all agree?"

Again, they nodded

"Belts, shoes, socks - it doesn't just end there. Jeans, sweatpants, necklaces, bras, skirts, dress shirts, any one of these and more could be all a terrorist needs to front their next attack. Clearly, the only option here, as unpopular an opinion it may be, is to ban all articles of clothing on airplanes."

As anyone could have predicted there was a huge backlash from the public to the Committee for Air Safety, and ultimately Chip's, decision to ban clothing on all flights. The biggest protest, of course, came from the airline industry itself who stood to lose millions, possibly billions of dollars due to this decision. At first, as assumed, flight numbers were down but people need to get places, have to get places, and will put up with an unbelievable amount of nonsense to make that happen. So slowly, numbers started creeping back up. Then something happen that no one could have predicted. Airlines started making profits that they'd never had before - people couldn't wait to get on an aeroplane and each and every airline was booked up days in advance.

Of course, no one who knew the reason behind this boost in industry would ever have given out the reason why; they were all too ashamed; and too frightened that their deprived acts would get out. Other's were too embarrassed to even believe that they could have witnessed such things, much less that they could have happened to them. Chip never had any warning what was coming his way.

Normally, he preferred to fly private, but a transatlantic flight was a bit much for even his wallet to pick up, so business class it was. Arriving four hours before the flight, in a huff and complaining the entire time about how 'goddamned shitty this service is, do they even know who I am?'. Chip finally boarded the plane, took his seat in the middle aisle, and waited to take off while watching all the naked people take their seats all along the plane - in particular, watching the girls. Beside him, a young couple sat down and were just a little bit too friendly, a little bit too inviting, and a little bit too interested in Chip. In response, Chip was just a little bit too interested in the bare woman's chest and just a little bit too proud that this whole circumstance was his own idea.

The plane started down the runway and before it had lifted off the ground, the couple beside Chip were sucking away at each other's faces. Chip turned red and tried ever so hard not to notice the man's erect penis which pointed straight up and to the right, in the exact direction where Chip was seated. Not 100 feet off the ground, the girl grabbed that cock and pulled it away from Chip, rubbing furiously.

In averting his eyes, Chip saw that the couple seated next to him were not alone. Everyone in the plane was committed in some heinous sexual act - whether they wanted to be or not. In requiring that no one wear clothes on airplanes, Chip had created a haven for sex-addicts, perverts, and paedophiles all around the world. Horrified, his eyes darted in every direction, landing on worse things each time: Men on women, ,en on men, men and women on children, even children on children. This was not what Chip had intended. The only thing worse than unnecessary death is unnecessary sex, and it was happening all around him.

Looking across the aisle, Chip saw one man sucking away at another, head bobbing up and down like a perverted dippy bird, and vomited right in the aisle. No one took any notice of this and Chip got out of his seat - ran straight towards the bathroom where he intended to lock himself for the entirety of the flight. The door burst open as he reached for the handle and caught Chip on the nose, knocking him to the floor. Out lumbered a behemoth of a man who, on sight of Chip laying on the ground, sprouted a cock rocket that was stuck pointed downwards by the undulating waves of fat.

The man dropped on top of Chip, sending ripples of fat along his body while driving the air from Chip's lungs. The next thing he drove was his cock right up Chip's ass while crushing the spine and lifting Chip's head backward by the nostrils. Chip tried to scream but only a pitiful short croak could escape his flattened lungs while another man, younger and with a wicked smile, walked down the aisle - intent eyes eyeing Chip up and down before winking and then sliding his cock down Chip's mouth. The weak gasps for air from Chip only excited the man more as he forced his shaft further and further down Chip's throat until the only thing Chip could do was bleed pathetically from his nose all over the base of a cock as the world around him faded to black.