Words and Chaos

Month: November, 2013

10 Lines of Dialogue #2

This one is the perspective of a businessman, perhaps stockbroker or market-investor or… one of those people who spends far too much money of someone else’s money on mostly-intangible things.  A mostly modest man, he’s experienced enough to be at least tinged with by that culture of stock-warrior arrogance.

‘Oh, hi! Listen, I’d love to chat but I’m real busy right now. I’ve got a half hour later at lunch, is it important? We’ll do lunch, I’ll talk to you then.’

‘You’ve got to know how to stay on top. You’ve got to know how to handle the pressure. A lot of people see this as a bunch of money for sitting in front of a bunch of computer screens. They think it’s all about spreadsheets, and telephones, and they’re dead wrong. It’s more than that. It takes more than that. If you can’t keep your feet in this job you’ll go down real fast, and let me tell you it ain’t easy getting back up.’

‘I did lunch with Spencer, at the new place that opened up across the way, yesterday. The food was great, but the staff were incompetent. Is it that hard to get a basic order out in ten minutes? Who hires these slackers? Now wonder they’re waiting tables.’

‘I saw the news report last night. I wouldn’t put much weight on it. Most of these guys don’t work the jungle. They’re just talking for the civilians. They can’t give out the real info, so they just make something for the economists: something about safety and percentages. Not worth listening to, really.

‘Liberals. Typical no-spine poets. They’re never going to change anything: they don’t have the balls. If you’re going to have those guys calling the shots then you can bet on the country collapsing. They should have one of our people run things; at least we’ve got the stones to take a risk.’

‘I told the new kid, “look, don’t drip feed me information. This isn’t twitter. If you don’t have the information, all the information, then don’t waste my time.” I said, “Get it together, kid. This isn’t school. Come back when you’ve got all the data or don’t come back at all,“ and I sent him back to his desk.’

‘I heard you landed that deal you were chasing all of last week. It’s been going around the floor like wildfire, good job! Negotiating like that takes some impressive stones. The elites are going to have their eyes on you, I don’t know how you did it.’

‘Listen, I don’t know where to begin. Are you stupid or just incompetent? I’ve seen untrained monkeys perform better than you! Get out of my sight.’

‘I heard Hines has been banging the receptionist. What’s her name? Quinn, right. Nice girl. They should hope the management doesn’t find out, though. You know how they don’t like in-office relationships.’

‘Stay the hell away from micro-chips right now. They’re toxic. Falling like lead. The word is that someone’s got a new tech coming out that’s going to replace them on the market. Real next-gen stuff. So everyone’s holding their breath, and nothing’s getting done there. I’m gonna wait and see how it pans out. See if this new thing does come through. You know what tech is like…’

Going Ahead with ’10 Lines of Dialogue’, Reflections and Thoughts

Last week’s ‘10 Lines of Dialogue’ felt a little too restricted. I think I was hammering on the idea of the character’s direction too much, the preoccupation with selling oxygen, and I think in future I will broaden the range of dialogue subjects and topics.

I’m not entirely sure how I’ll do this, or how I’ll format it so it’s clear that what gets written is, for example, a response to a specific question or a greeting. I don’t want to header everything with ‘greeting’/’farewell’/’political ideas’ or whatever – for some reason that bugs me.

Either way, I don’t think harping on about sellable air was a good direction to go – it was far too ham-fisted, even for a simple writing exercise. I’ll probably have a bunch of different categories that I choose from and see how we go from there. There should be a bit of a broader persona there and some more variation.

10 Lines of Dialogue I

This first one is from the perspective of a person who doesn’t believe oxygen is a human right, and would be better as a privatised commodity, and sold to consumers in tanks.

‘Can we commoditise oxygen?’

‘You don’t necessarily have the right to oxygen.’

‘Why shouldn’t we commoditise oxygen?’

‘You earn everything else you have in life, so why not air?’

‘If we paid money for air, companies could use that money to fund air improvement facilities. The possibilities of chemical-air-enhancement, funded by money from privatising oxygen to be sold in tanks, are enormous!’

‘If human rights really existed in the natural order, humans would not starve or suffer from a lack of clean water. They would have access to basic health care, birth control, or any number of other so-called ‘rights’. But a lot of them don’t. Given that all human rights are not objectively existent, would it not be logical to conclude that the right to air depends only on an individual’s perspective?’

‘If one could artificially improve the quality of air, would that air be a basic right?’

‘Arguably, the air we have now, especially the air available in dense urban areas, is so bad that it has been said that the air, in its current condition, is an attack on human rights! When seen from that perspective, it is surely better to sell you air in tanks. Oxygen is a resource, like oil, that should be commercially controlled by a trustworthy corporation.’

‘It’s great for the economy! It would help the environment, it would help the flow and circulation of capital, it would create jobs. It would instil a desire to work, in those without a steady source of employment or income. Add together, these are benefits that far outweigh the, frankly, nebulous concept of human rights.’

‘The market competition, and financial power, of a privatised oxygen industry, is too great a benefit to overlook. It is a far more pragmatic system to work with, than the relativistic nuances of ideological humanitarianism.’


World Building Podcast, Episode 1, Freya Robertson

World Building Podcast, Episode 1, Freya Robertson

A pretty cool introductory podcast on world building with fantasy author Freya Robertson.

Getting Up

Reasons to get up in the morning:

1: You have things to do.

2: You have things to see.

3: You have places to be.

4: A number of these things are not really that optional.

5: You’re a responsible adult with integrity and vision, and the world needs you on your feet if it’s to learn from you.

Reasons against getting up in the morning:

1: Shag your soul with a rusty Whaler’s harpoon, it’s cold out there!


Word Clusters #4

Another month, another list. Here they are:

  • Intelligence Cursing
  • Neoclassical Combined-Land-Sea
  • Catnap Olympics
  • Recover Packed
  • Executors Crankshaft
  • Thunder Ethnographer
  • Crusader Shadows
  • Beaches Bio-Capacities
  • Cocks Congeal
  • Interlinked Periodisation