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(n.) the closest thing to god that humanity has yet created, and very likely to destroy us some time in the future. the internet is like a vast beehive of information of which computers are mere waxy cells.

according to legend, the heart of the internet is a gigantic central server built into a volcano, guarded by armies of orcs in little button-down shirts and maybe al gore or something


(n.) an obsession of a sexual nature; one of the major drivers of activity on the internet. because of the diverse array of refined perversions that afflict humanity, virtually everything is someone's fetish: a certain body part, a certain article of clothing, a cartoon character, the inversion of traditional gender roles, one's ethnicity and cultural heritage, good dental hygiene, bad dental hygiene, smearing condiments all over yourself, dressing up as an animal and pretending to maul one's partner, actually letting one's partner be mauled by animals, etc.

the word 'fetish' has also been used as a synonym idol (i.e., a physical object of religious reverence), but this usage has mostly been phased out in favor of the aforementioned perversion.

old people

humans who have done a lot of aging, reaching the later stages of the species' life span.

in many cultures, old people are revered for their wealth of experience, just as they are shunned for being weird, liver-spotted grouches who drive you up the wall with their interminable rambling stories


(n.) the catch-all term for nationally-syndicated televised news programs; these can be thought of as analogous to cartoons, only viewed by old people (though the cartoons tend to leave the viewer more stable)


an 1881 novel written by mary shelley. arguably one of the earliest known works of science fiction and the origin point for one of fiction's greatest monsters, nobody has read it, because there's a more popular movie.

the plot concerns an obsessive doctor who believes he can synthesize his own life form, but upon doing so, he fails to raise it properly, leading to a very bad wedding, an expedition to the north pole, and many ponderous philosophical arguments.

differences from the source material: in the book, the monster was motivated by revenge outright, and was pretty chatty. since the 1931 movie, people have thought of frankenstein's monster as a voiceless, child-brained hulk who doesn't fully realize the consequences of his own actions.

to be absolutely clear, the monster is not named frankenstein. the monster is never given a name. but we can call him dave, if you like. in any case he is widely acknowledged as one of the all-time groovy ghoulies, like dracula and the wolf man

differences from the source material

hollywood big shots enjoy making movies (or at least, they keep doing it; who knows if they enjoy it). but scripts take a lot of time to write, and sometimes it saves time to simply take a pre-existing work of fiction and modify it for the big screen. however, sometimes the source material does not pass through such modification unscathed.

the movie-fication process often takes pains to shorten, lengthen, doll up, ugly up, or in other ways mutilate the source material. e.g.:

* apocalypse now: the original book, 'heart of darkness,' is set in 19th-century Africa instead of vietnam.
* a clockwork orange: alex is cured of his violent tendencies in the end
* forrest gump: gump goes into space with a monkey and a porn star
* jurassic park: the lawyer wasn't a bad guy but hammond was
* starship troopers: the movie and the book both examine the message of "the army is way cool, and better soldiers make better citizens." the book honestly expects the reader to agree with this message, while the movie is laughing in your face for thinking it for even a second.
* who framed roger rabbit?: is about comic strip characters, not animated cartoons, and the killer is like a magic genie or something.
* every stephen king book: doesn't suck. well, not all of them.


aeschylus (525-465 BC) was a playwright of ancient athens, perhaps best known for his oresteia trilogy ('agamemnon,' 'the libation bearers,' and 'the eumenides'), which is about a family caught in a bloody and endless cycle of revenge, as well as 'seven against thebes,' which is about some motherlover who tries to enjoy retirement but is repeatedly interrupted by his awful sons.

aeschylus was also an initiate into the cult of the eleusinian mysteries, joining cults being all the rage at that time.

aeschylus reportedly died when a hawk tried to smash a turtle open on the playwright's bald head, which the hawk had mistaken for a rock. this bizarre vagary of fate reminds us that one man's tragedy is always another man's comedy.


euclid was a student of the great mouseion ("temple of the muses") in alexandria, like his later successor archimedes. among his many impressive scholarly works was a treatise outlining the four elements of the natural world.

of course, as any modern schoolchild knows, there are hundreds of natural elements, demonstrating that even a brilliant man like euclid was ultimately an ignorant savage in the grand scheme of things. suck it, old man.


archimedes of syracuse (287-212 BC) was perhaps the greatest mathematical mind of his day. a student of the mouseion of alexandria, archimedes returned to his home city of syracuse to become an inventor of great renown.

he is reputed to be the originator of the theory of fluid displacement (and, related, an early critic of your primitive notions of modesty), a quick and consistent calculation method for the volume of a sphere, the archimedes screw (not a sex act, a means of pumping water), and possibly even a death ray he used on roman invaders.

in 212 BC archimedes was supposedly killed by a roman legionary who had been instructed to find the great mathematician and bring him before his commander, marcellus. while this legionary looked for his quarry, he stumbled upon a scruffy old man drawing circles in the sand; the old man snapped at the legionary not to scuff his circles, and was killed for his impertinence. naturally the old man turned out to have been archimedes. heh. cosmic irony.

ley lines

one of the more pervasive postulates in the field of hooey.

in summarium, the idea that veins of vague, unquantifiable "energy" crisscross the planet, intersecting at points of equally vague significance, usually ones humans handily chose to mark with photogenic landmarks such as stonehenge

equivalent to "dragon paths" in chinese culture, to "songlines" in australian aboriginal culture, and (functionally) to aliens building the pyramids in sane person culture.


(n.) it's a funny story, you've probably heard the idiom "hoist by your own petard," meaning "have your actions backfire on you," and you might have assumed a petard was some kind of garment or something. but actually a petard is a kind of bomb. the saying is "blown up by your own bomb"

five deadly venoms

a reasonably famous piece of hong kong cinema released in 1978, when the martial arts craze was still going relatively strong. the domestic popularity of the film was such that the central cast was propelled to significant local fame

the plot runs as such: the aged master of the poison clan once had five students, each trained to fight like a different kind of venomous animal: the quick-handed centipede, the flexible snake, the stingy scorpion, the really-good-at-climbing-walls lizard, and the, um, *indestructible* toad. however, this aged master is now on death's doorstoop, and he is haunted by a dream that one or more of these students have used his teachings for evil. he calls on his newest, youngest, sixth student to go to the nearby village and investigate to see which, if any, of the five are guilty, which is complicated by the fact that all the students wore masks and their identities are secret.

in case you're curious (but not curious enough to actually watch the movie): scorpion is evil, centipede is a willing accomplice, snake is an unwilling accomplice, toad is murdered and lizard is a hero who teams up with the main character.


(n.) a merry-go-round; a carnival attraction consisting of a large round gazebo, rotating slowly as it emits menacing calliope music, and filled with petrified and impaled animals on which merrymakers are invited to ride.
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