17 November, 2011
Books for sale.
The book is finished. People have paid me for copies of it, asked for autographs and everything. Naturally typos are leaping out at me. Almost directly across from each other, I spelled it both "capitol city" and "capital city" on pages 4 and 5. Then I found a few typos which weren't in the proof copy. They only appeared after the most recent draft I saw. Not sure how that happened, but whatever.
While I try to resolve difficulties with PayPal, anyone so inclined can send a check (or just staple 10$+ shipping bill to an envelope) to:
BSC 2/5 SFG (A)
Fort Campbell, KY 42223
The price may increase depending on shipping costs. The book has an ISBN number [ISBN-10: 1466228601 ISBN-13: 9781466228603] but I have no idea what would happen if someone used those, or even how one tries. I wanted the printed books. I'm funny that way. Maybe it's available on Kindle or something. If people start getting copies, someone will start wanting money for it, and the rights are all mine.
The OWS movement is hemorrhaging (or at least converting to a different form. Having been chased out by people who'd had enough with violent assault-committing freeloaders who won't permit the police or health department to do their duties. Attempts at riots all across the country led the most violent and unstable to jail, almost like they were set-up. Not that they really were, but I'm assuming the 'leaders' will reach that conclusion next in their proto-Bolshevik state.
OWS has backed themselves into a corner. They can either stay individuals and whine that they don't have any sense of community or they stay together and devolve into things like this. It won't win them any friends and they don't have the organizational capacities to entrench themselves. They're still pretending that trashing someone else's property is a First Amendement Right.
They should count themselves lucky the police threw them out, sparing them the national embarassment of quitting without even picking up after themselves. How many totalitarians would do that? Occupiers in a California bank today didn't trouble themselves to find the toilets.
Still, at least those inclined towards violence and destruction were inspired to call a Day of Action, getting many of them arrested. Wonder what the others will do without their leaders?
I would like to write more, but I have a very long day ahead. Definitely one of those 'more done by 9AM' days.
“Everything all right back there, Vic?” Stut ushered him to another booth. “Gentlemen, may I present Victor, my esteemed predecessor.”
“A pleasure,” grunted Commander Grinch. He was here to oversee the Tall Tribes, prized runball team of the 11th and 12th Hordes. The two shook hands and turned back to the game. “Tell me,” he asked Victor, “how does this large court work? Why is it in this sport? In my native Svetlandia, what you call runball we call a game with a small number of players. Five players for three teams is considered a very big game for us. Here you have no fewer than three teams with no less than ten players and that is, how do you say, stupidly ridiculous.” Grinch’s aide whispered something into his ear and he continued without missing a beat, “I see I have chosen words badly. May we agree it is overly complicated?”
Victor couldn’t help but smile at someone who cared so little whether he gave offense. Grinch was jocular and articulate in his crudeness so the effect almost negated itself to geniality. “It’s complicated, but don’t give too much importance to the individual players’ abilities. Yes, they’re excellent, but if the overall playing strategy is bad…” He pointed at a player who had just scored for the Pigeons. Over on the wall, large signs were moved across a cloth screen by a mechanism which displayed the name, “Oluf Kluto” who had the ball right now and “7”, his place in the line-up this play.
“See that?” he asked Grinch. “It took seven players to run the ball across the court this far, but they made it. That’s strategy.”
“Hmmm,” the Commander’s expression said ‘I must look like someone who’s thinking seriously.’ His lips pursed under the tiny mustache and his cheeks puffed out, making his face look fat. “But that is, how do you say, wasteful. Look at how many players just stood there doing nothing because they were forbidden to move outside the nyukniks. What do you call those lines on the floor that make little squares that the players have to stand up in when another team is up?”
He went on. “Up north in my country, the players are few and the courts are small. Every player is crucial to obliterating the enemy. But here, with your many pretty men standing in lines, it looks like a bizarre parade or ritual performed for the crowd. Who is the first with the ball? When the ball leaves the player’s hands, is he in control of it or is it a free ball? What constitutes, what do you call, inappropriate touching of another player’s ball? Who cares?”
“That’s fair, I can see that.” Victor and Grinch drank beer and shifted position to see better. They had no audience, only the competition. “Yeah, some of those players get all worked up about their place in the pecking order. On most teams, there’s a player or two who’s no good, but he had the pull to get himself onto the team anyway. It’s a status thing more than anything. That’s the sort of guy who’s likeliest to cause problems, on the court or off.”
“Yes, you see, you understand,” Grinch bit into a gigantic sandwich that dripped with vegetables and grease. “In Svetlandia where I am from, we have no more players than we need. Everybody must fight for the team. Sometimes we kill the losers and burn down their father’s house. Is good sport, you know?”
A Tall Tribesman had just scored and was forming up for their turn. Team captains called out the next play while players stepped to different gridsquares. A Tribesman patted a Pigeon on the ass.
“The fans like it too,” Victor said. “They root for teams, but I wonder if their favorite players are what they really care about. I met half these kids one time or another, usually when they were starting out and dragged to some official function. They’re the ones I follow.”
“Say Victor,” Grinch hadn’t finished swallowing yet, “in my home country up north, when a free ball is picked up, it is called a found ball. What do you call it?”
“Mine ball,” said a woman wearing a distinguished golden dress that matched her hair. “Victor, it’s been too long.”
“Wonderful to see you, Lana,” they embraced.
“SVET-lana, you crass oaf. You always forget. Are you two getting along?”
“Yes,” said Grinch. “Thank you for telling me what to call mine ball.” He set the remains of his sandwich down and grabbed a fresh one. After one more enormous bite, he threw it out the window where it hit the people 15 feet below in the poor seats.
The game halted when the enforcement players argued whether a Pigeon had illegally moved too many gridsquares. “You see?” Grinch asked nobody in particular. “Such a waste of time and people. They could be poking each other in the eyeballs with sticks to kill time the way they do in my home country of Svetlandia.”
“So you’re into sports these days?” Victor asked.
“You could say that,” Lana smiled pleasantly. “I’m the chief diplomat for Svetlandia and being here qualifies as a diplomatic operation between two countries that are not currently at war.”
“That’s reassuring,” said Victor. “How did you get that job?”
“In my country, anything is possible,” she radiated with pride. “Would you like to get together some time during the games?”
Outside, there was applause. Someone had scored and the first quarter was over with a score of 1,0-0,1.
“I’d like that. I’ll bring Wenda. Have you met anybody?”
“My only true husband is Tok Rocksplitter, thundering sky god of the Great Mountain Range. I’m also seeing someone on and off, but we’re in one of our off periods right now. How did you two meet?”
After a few more pleasantries, Victor went back to his booth. As he left, he heard Commander Grinch ask “How do they call this runball when there are no naked women beheading the ugliest one and using her head for a ball? These are all feeble old men!”