November 2008

As the solstice approaches, many turn their thoughts to shopping and presents.  Others turn their thought towards shameless self-promotion.


Soon Chapter the Fifth of Tearing Down Werburgh Street will be available here.  Pointing your friends and family at The Definitive Indefinite Article – The cheapest gift you can give.


Here are some of the pre-release reviews of Chapter 5:  


“A coruscating cascade of cacophonous calumny!” – Bishop of Croke and Bargy


“A bilious barrage of bewilderingly barbarous banality.” – Bishop of Dervish and Thomond


“A willfully wayward waste of webspace.” – Fr. Desmond Doldrum


“A tremendously tiresome tirade of titillating truthlessness” – Sr. Venedicta of the Dismal Shroud


“A fatuous farrago of frightful flippancy.”   Monsignor Bartholomew Hegarty  


“A horribly heinous heaping of high-handed hauteur.”  – Terence McLoghilogher, President of Family Unity Values Coalition Against Spandex Bikinis


“An abysmally arbitrary assemblage of arrant anecdote.”   – Br. Septimus Flail


Una desgracia y un disgusto decadente.” Cardenal Mendoza


All of the above, TDIA can only characterize as the the tentendious twittering of tiresome thesaurus-thumbing theists.





The Concerned Reader: So, what’t the story?


TDIA: You still have a key?  Give me that back!  I can’t have you sneaking in like that.  In future, you knock at the kitchen window like everybody else.


The Concerned Reader: So, what’s the story?  This Institute for the Advancement of Regression.  What is that all about?


TDIA: It’s another facet of the multi-faceted Definitive Indefinite Article multiverse.  We’re going to call it iFAR if we don’t get sued.  


The Concerned Reader: You didn’t really think about that first sentence before you said it, did you?


TDIA: Not much.


The Concerned Reader: So what is with all this bleak future scenario stuff?  You’re making the punters nervous.  Have you seen the comments?


TDIA: No.  That’s what TDIA interns are for.


The Concerned Reader: Well, you should hear them: Ledwithzeppelin said “Got up on the wrong side of the fascist media superstate today, did we? Man, where’s yer blind faith in Obama making it all ok?”

Nick said: “I’m guessing this one has been mulling around in the writer’s head for some time.”

Are you losing it?  I thought you were going to do and public offering of TDIA stock?


TDIA: I’ve just been busy with other stuff and, if you must know, some of the interns have been running things.  


The Concerned Reader: Well that has to stop.  What stuff have you been busy with?


TDIA: Some consulting on rebranding and repositioning for the Financial Industry.


The Concerned Reader: Oh yeah?  What have you come up with?



The Concerned Reader: They paid you for that?


TDIA: The check is, as they say, in the mail.


The Concerned Reader:  Good luck with that.  Here’s your key.

In a shameless effort to increase sales of tinned food and lengths of lead pipe by its holding companies, The Definitive Indefinite Article’s Institute for The Advancement of Regression has released the following statement:


How can we prepare for the uncertain future?  How will we know what to do?  Most of the time the future is just the pretend future from the past made flesh.  Cell phones?  Look at Star Trek communicators from the time of Captain Kirk and Spock.  Riot police all kevlared and black visored?  Anyone remember Judge Dredd comics? 


Where are we now?  Probably on the edge of the New Dark Ages.  What are we to do?  Watch Blade Runner and Running Man again.  They will give you a fair idea of how the unimaginative will structure the future.  Of course in fairness to them, they are really only applying an accepted principle of marketing.  In the same way that Star Trek created a beachhead of conceptual acceptance for implausibly small telephone devices, so too did Blade Runner preposition the idea of the fascist media superstate, if you will, in our minds.  When we are all standing around massive TV screens watching Limited-Over Uber-Death Cricket on MurdochVision and rioting about rice hitting $400 a pound, we will all be able to look at the flaming oil drums that are keeping us warm, the rich people and the forces of Law and Order flying overhead and feel little real shock of how awful it all is.  We have already seen these images on TV and accepted them as looking like “The Future.”


Once the fascist media superstate bit is done, we can look to the real New Dark Ages as the empires collapse into parochialism, superstition and suspicion. 


We are beyond superstition?  Not at all.  We are already surrounded by things we do not understand but take on faith.  Any idea how to fix your cell phone or your DVD player?  No.  Me neither and that qualifies as superstition.  We have little understanding of our surroundings and for the most part don’t care to inquire.  We pay homage to things we do not understand much like the befuddled peasant flinching at the sight of a gargoyle.


So when you find yourself with sacking wrapped around your feet, your teeth falling out and you are expected to kneel and repent before some asshole wearing a spandex bikini and ferret’s pelt on his head playing “Flashdance” on the one working gramophone for hundreds of miles, you won’t feel too surprised.  You’ve already seen the bad sci-fi flick, so the society modeled on it will be no real surprise.



I have been keeping a low profile recently, recovering from the stresses of abduction and detention at the hands of the Department of Untold Conformity and then as soon as I was released a boom in the book handling and dog-earing trade brought about by Bailout Bill and The Derivative Kid, the Fastest Fix in the West.  .  But I have to share this before our readership takes itself out to exercise its franchise..


There I was, standing on the corner of Wall Street and Pearl Street waiting for a sandwich (a long story – for another day) when behind me there was a sudden ripple in the fabric of things.  An anonymous source at the Indefinite Particle particle accelerator informs me that a copy of The Wall Street Clarion, two crud-encrusted pennies and some parrot droppings fell into an interstitial singularity flux when a mini black hole was created during routine cleaning.


The result in this dimension was that I turned round to see a weird flash and a Quantum Contrapositive Doppelganger of Non-Phil Gramm and Quantum Celebrity Fascist Rafaella Marconi in a spandex bikini materialize and begin yelling and throwing goat excrement at the passing Wall Street Moguls:


“You are a disgrace.  You are nothing but an industry of whiners!  Look at you!  Running to the Nanny State looking for handouts!  Private profits and socialized risk!  Help!  Help!  Bailout Bill, come save me from my own runaway greed and incompetence!  You make me want to puke!  Too big to fail?  Maybe you’re just too damn big, end of story!”


No Quantum Doppelgangers here!

No Quantum Doppelgangers here!

This was followed by a brief Implausibility Matrix Readjustment during which I had the chance to take this photo.  Quantum Doppelgangers never show up on digital media.  You can see the complete absence of anything out of the ordinary, classic proof of Quantum Chimera.  There was another weird flash and Non-Phil and Rafaella went back to wherever they came from leaving goat crap and puzzlement behind them.