Thursday, March 23, 2006

Things progress....

Well, I just got, from the publisher, sent an image of how my story will be layed out! I dig it!


Fond Memories of Horselover Fat - image from 'Zoo Nation' periodical

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Fond Memories of Horselover Fat (edited)

Fond Memories of Horselover Fat


It has been five years since Fat had died. As I sit here - listening to Chopin and drowning myself in red wine - my thoughts keep drifting back to him. Drifting back to our conversations together, how we met when I was just a kid - anxious to meet one of the craziest (and according to some, one of the greatest) writers of our time. Our generation's Kafka, Hesse, or, in some ways, even Huxley.

I used to argue with him in those latter years that there was too much coincidence between Jim, Jimmi, and Janis all leaving us in a matter of years. Add in the facts of Leary in jail, and the White & Black Panther party - as well as the Weathermen - all but totally disbanded. Our momentum that had fueled the Civil Rights movement, the Vietnam War protests, and the overthrow of Nixon had fizzled out due to a successful “character assassination” of the Leaders of the Counter-Culture. Too much “Containment” in too little time, I would say.

"Cool it!" Fat used to say. "Roll us another number and just calm down. Your paranoia stresses even me out."

"Damn, Fat. Hearing something like that from someone as paranoid as you really does make me feel a bit nuts, thanks."

"Always glad to help, Slim. Just keep rolling us those numbers, and putting your paranoia down in your stories and you'll turn out just fine."

You know, the usual back and forth, you get the picture. God how I miss those conversations: him lecturing me on smoking too much, me lecturing him on taking too much snuff; sharing stories about our felines and checking out girls - or “Cat-Watching” as he liked to call it, a hobby we both shared with a passion. Of course, conversations about writing, philosophy, music and politics always fell in there. Alas, those days are over now, and nostalgic melancholy settles in. I wonder, though, if he could see the body count so far, with no end in sight, would he call me so paranoid?

Here we are, at the height of the Regan Era, with one of the greatest champions of the Nixon overthrow now dead for half a decade. Dead, felled by a stroke and eventual heart failure - the two most common forms of assassination (minus “Staged Suicide”, of course). Ronnie and Gorby are buddies now. Deals with Red China, and blind-eyes turned to the atrocities in Tibet. Selling weapons to Iran and Iraq, so they can kill each other - all to fund our little “Drug Ventures” in South America.

Fat was right: Stalin opened the door for the conversion of the USSR from Communism to Fascism, and we fell right in line - all under the guise of “National Security”, of course. In a “Cold War”, what's going on is easier to hide from the public - who don't and can't pay as much attention. No one noticed as the US became a Fascist police state, as Russia and China did; or as our "Authorities" turned into the KGB. Like a “change-over” on a projection reel or a clean audio edit, no one notices the difference.

Tagore is nowhere to be found, and it seems as if any progress that was made seems to be lost - or at least receding. All “Transmissions” from Albemuth have been cut off. Zebra/Valis/whatever is no longer making contact. We are once more alone, and without a Prophet or a Sibyl. No more Divine help for the Republic. Our losses have been great: The Kennedy brothers, Gandhi, King, Malcolm X, and now John Lennon assassinations; the passing - possible assassination - of Horselover Fat. Who, then, are we to look to? From whence shall our Hope and Salvation come? Yes, we can break down the "Black Iron Prison," but not until we're awakened. Who is to open the eyes of the masses?

Certainly not me! I'm neurotic, of a sensitive constitution, and a giant coward to top it all off. Granted, though, Fat didn't exactly ask for the job, either. He certainly had his share of issues and phobias. Why does "IT" choose the neurotic, sickly ones? Is it because we are more sensitive, so pick up on the 'Message' better? Or, perhaps it uses the fact that we are “ill” - driving us to feel that we must heal the World or Society to heal Ourselves.

If it is supposed to be me, though, I'm certainly not getting any signals. Perhaps my job, my place, is just to watch for them - to alert others to the possibility that they exist. Whatever it may be, I try my best and hope that Salvation comes before we go too far to be saved, or destroy ourselves altogether.

In a way, I guess ol' Horselover got off easy. He could have never watched us lose so much of what we tried to win back. Even if they didn’t kill him, Fat's ticker couldn't have handled seeing how things have turned out. One thing saddens me, though, about the whole thing. I know how much he was looking forward to Future, “The New Millennium”. For the sake of all of us, may it be everything he dreamed it would be.

- Zebrahunter Slim
August, 1987

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Publication Request!

Dear Samuel,


Today I spotted your rather neat story 'Fond Memories of Horselover Fat' on LJ (my LJ is '***Personal information removed*** ').

I publish a small, award-winning British science fiction fanzine called 'Zoo Nation', a free printed publication which goes out to about 300 SF fans across the world. In previous issues I've included articles on H.P. Lovecraft, Ursula Le Guin, SF movies, science fiction fandom, and fanzine culture, and assorted contributions from authors Paul Di Filippo, Wilson Tucker, David Langford, Ian Watson, and cartoonist John Kovalic, creator of 'Dork Tower'.

I'd love to gain permission from you to reproduce your story in my issue #7. It would fit very well among some other articles I've got lined up, and it will be published sometime in the next month.

As Zoo Nation is a free publication I will certainly not be profiting from its use. If you would like to see the quality of the fanzine first I'd be more than happy to supply you with copies so you can see the context in which your writing would appear.

I do look forward *very much* to a positive reply!

With best wishes,

***Personal information removed***
Reading, England

Current mantra: "Must work on fanzine... Must work on fanzine..."

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Fond Memories of Horselover Fat

Fond Memories of Horselover Fat


It had been five years since Fat had died. As I sit here listening to Chopin and drown myself in red wine, my thoughts keep drifting back to him. Our conversations together, how we met when I was just a kid - anxious to meet the craziest (and according to some, greatest) writers of our time. Our generation's Kafka, or Hesse.

I used to argue with him that there was too much coincidence between Jim, Jimmi, and Janis all leaving us in a matter of years, Leary in jail, and the White & Black Panther party - as well as the Weathermen - all but totally disbanded. Too much "containment" in too little time.

"Cool it!" Fat used to say. "Just roll us another number and just calm down. You're Paranoia stresses even ME out."

"Damn, Fat. Hearing something like that from someone as Paranoid as YOU really does make me feel a bit nuts, thanks."

"Always glad to help, Slim. Just keep rolling us those numbers, and putting your Paranoia's down in your stories, and you'll turn out just fine."

You know, the usual back and forth, you get the picture. God how I miss those conversations. Him lecturing me on smoking too much, me lecturing him on taking too much snuff. Sharing stories about our felines and our checking out girls - or 'Cat-Watching' as he liked to call it. A hobby we both shared with a passion. Those days are over now, and melancholy settles in. I wonder, though, if he could see the number of bodies so far, would he call me so Paranoid?

Horselover Fat, dead in his fifties. Here we are, at the height of the Regan Era, with one of the greatest champions of the Nixon overthrow now dead for half a decade. Dead, by a stroke and eventual heart failure - the two most common forms of assassination (minus 'Staged Suicide', of course). Ronnie and Gorby are buddies now. Deals with Red China, and blind-eyes turned to the atrocities in Tibet. Selling weapons to Iran and Iraq, so they can kill each other - all to fund our little 'Drug Ventures' in South America.

Fat was right, Stalin opened the door for the conversion of the USSR from Communism to Fascism, and we fell right in line - all under the guise of 'National Security', of course. In a 'Cold War', what's going on isn't nearly as obvious as in a real War, so more things can be 'gotten over' on the public, who don't and can't pay as much attention. No one noticed as the US became a Fascist police state, as Russia did. No one noticed as our "Authorities" turned into the KGB. Like a 'change-over' on a projection reel, no one notices the difference.

Tagore is nowhere to be found, and it seems as if Zebra/Valis/whatever is no longer making contact. Transmissions from Albemuth have been cut off. Any progress that was made seems to be lost. We are once more alone, and without a Prophet, or a Sibyl. No more Divine help for the Republic. Our losses have been great. The King, Kennedy brothers, Malcolm X, and now John Lennon assassinations. The passing - possible assassination - of Horselover Fat. Who, then, are we to look to? From whence shall our Hope and Salvation come? Yes, we can break down the "Black Iron Prison", but not until we're awakened. Who is to open the eyes of the masses?

Certainly not me. I'm neurotic, of a sensitive constitution, and a giant coward to top it all off. Granted, though, Fat didn't exactly ASK for the job, either. He certainly had his share of issues, and phobias. Why does "IT" choose the neurotic, sickly ones? Is it because we are more sensitive, so pick up on the 'Message' better? Or, perhaps, it's because we are "ill", it uses that fact, driving us to feel that we must heal the World to heal Ourselves.

If it is supposed to be me, though, I'm certainly not getting any signals. Perhaps my job, my place, is just to watch for them. To alert others to the possibility that they exist. Whatever it may be, I try my best and hope that Salvation comes before we go too far to be saved, or destroy ourselves.

In a way, I guess `ol Horselover got off easy. He could have never watched us loose so much of what we tried to win back. Even if they hadn't killed him, Fat's ticker couldn't have handled seeing how things have turned out. One thing saddens me, though, about the whole thing. I know how much he was looking forward to Future, the new Millennia. May it be everything he dreamed it would be.

- Zebrahunter Slim
August, 1987

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