It was another cold night that night. I remember it vividly. Mostly due to the fact that out here you have to be alert at all times. My name is Sergeant Johnson, and at the time I was deployed at a remote outpost in the Warduj Valley. This valley is known for its high level of insurgent activity in the Warduj District, Badakhshan Province, Afghanistan. I was deployed for seven months, and I have to say the toughest thing, other than the usual rocket attacks, was missing my new wife back home. Maybe that’s why less than one percent of the American population joins the military.
As an infantryman in the Army there’s not much that scares me anymore. I have seen the worst of the world and what it has to offer. This night, on the other hand, was different. To this day I still cannot explain what it was that happened that night.
It was 2300 hours on the 24th of December 2005. One more day until Christmas and there I was on guard duty in the northern most guard tower cleaning my M4 ready for whatever the Taliban had to offer to ruin the holidays this year. My relief will not be arriving for another nine hours.…
Electrons excite me. Perhaps that is why I took so readily to computers. By the age of 13 I had cobbled together my first computer from the odd bits leftover from the old computers of friends and family. The rush of creation and experimentation that I felt that day has never been matched, but my experiments are getting closer to recapturing that glory.
The issue of any computer is that it is always in the process of becoming outdated. There are always limits on what technology can achieve. This is why my work is so important, I figured out that the best way to make a computer that didn’t need to be upgraded, that had few limits, was to harness the processing power of the living human mind. In particular, I harnessed yours.
Peeling back your scalp was the easy part; a circular incision prepared the skin to peel with one swift tug. When the drill met resistance I feared my tools were inadequate for my vision, but that crimson gush of blood and mental ichor provided reassurance. Don’t try to speak on my account, I fear this grey, slithy mound here may have been important for that – necessary even.…
It’s been a while since I’ve written anything related to the Disney Corporation, and I’m sure you can understand why.
A lot has been going on since my last post. I’ve received a lot of questions and concerns from folks who read my first-hand account of Mowgli’s Palace… a resort that was built and abandoned by Disney.
I want to thank everyone who mirrored by post. It’s been taken down from a few places, mostly corporate sites that were easily leaned on by a larger power. However, for every nuked topic or disappearing blog post, it seems like a hundred more have popped up.
This is something they’ll have to face. There’s no turning back for them… none for me, either…
I’m definitely being followed. For the first month or two, I chalked it up to paranoia. Any casual glance or half-smile in my direction set me off. Hairs standing on the back of the neck and everything.
The first one, or rather, the first one I was actually able to spot, was a telephone worker milling around my apartment complex.
He was middle-aged, doughy, dressed just as you’d expect, but something just seemed off about him. I couldn’t place it, but I knew this wasn’t just my imagination acting up.…
In 1999, my family visited Disneyland. We happily rode the Small World ride. I was 12 at the time and my sister was 6. We loved every moment and our parents smiled with nostalgia.
At one time near the end, some lights suddenly shut off and rear lights illuminated the ceiling.
The moving display parts shut off and crew members wearing red overalls walked along them to help passengers in the boats onto the stages to direct them out of the building via emergency exits.
A voice came over the loudspeakers. “Disneyland thanks you for your visit. Please evacuate the attraction in an orderly fashion. Keep looking foward and follow the directions of staff. Thank you.”
The staff wouldn’t tell us much as they quickly ushered us out of the building. Ambulances were outside and a police car was parked in the main walkway. At the time, my mother still had her camera out and snapped a few photos of the crewmen and close-ups of the mechanical children.
She snapped a few last-minute photos of whatever to use up the last of the roll of film on the camera, since we were going to develop them later that afternoon, anyway. This was the last photo on the reel, aimed at the ceiling at the attraction.…
I must type this sentence to keep the monsters away. I don’t know why this works, but it does. The faster I type, the further away they are. Sometimes, I think I might be able to type fast enough to make them go away. Yet, if I stop for only a moment they will return.
I must type this sentence to keep the monsters away. If I knew why they targeted me, it might be worth some comfort. It would at least let me know what my fade would be when I tire. Will I be eaten? Am I to be tormented? Will they simply kill me? Just knowing what was to come next would be enough.
I must type this sentence to keep the monsters away. I can see them. They wait in the hallway. Their large bestial bodies hunched over, as if they are ready to pounce. Yet their faces, Christ … their faces, have a placid calm. They are in no hurry.
I must type this sentence to keep the monsters away. For some reason, my eyes can’t focus directly on them. I almost mistook the first one for a smudge on my glasses. Yet, Smudges don’t move.…
When I was twelve, I came to the conclusion that everyone in the world, including my own family, was against me. I was never a problemed child, but my parents sure treated me like one.
For example, I used to need to be home by 5:00pm every day. This clearly restricted my amount of “play time” outdoors. I wasn’t allowed to have friends over to play at the house, nor was I allowed to go over anyone else’s. I had to finish homework directly after I came home from school, no matter how long it took. My parents refused to buy me video games and forced me to read books and then write a book report on them to prove I actually read it!
Now, even though those rules listed above were quite frustrating to me as a child, they aren’t what upset me most. What really hurt me was the lack of compassion on behalf of my parents. My mother was a bitter woman who always made me feel guilty of accidents or mistakes I’ve made. My father only knew one emotion: frustration. The only time he spoke to me was when he screamed at me for receiving poor test scores or beat me for misbehaving.…
When I was a small child, I was terrified of the dark. I still am, but back when I was around six years old I couldn’t go a full night without crying out for one of my parents to search beneath my bed or in my closet for whatever monster I thought was waiting to eat me. Even with a night light, I would still see dark shapes moving around the corners of the room, or strange faces looking in on me from my bedroom window. My parents would do their best to console me, telling me that it was just a bad dream or a trick of the light, but in my young mind I was positive that the second I fell asleep, the bad things would get me. Most of the time I would just hide under the blankets until I became tired enough to stop worrying, but every now and then I would become so panicked that I would run screaming into my parents room, waking up my brother and sister in the process. After an ordeal like that, there would be no way anyone would be getting a full nights rest.
Eventually, after one particularly traumatizing night, my parents had had enough.…
Hello. I suffer from Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, which is an anxiety disorder in which people have unwanted and repeated thoughts, feelings, ideas, or behaviors. In other words, my life is a a systematic pattern.
But yesterday, I experienced a flaw in my own system.
I awoke that morning in my lakeside home promptly at 6:45AM, as I do every morning. Before leaving my bedroom I made sure to touch the doorknob three times. I have to. I need to.
On my way down stairs, I made sure not to step on the second to last step. I never touch that step. I just can’t.
I made my usual breakfast of toast, scrambled eggs, and black coffee. I never eat anything else in the morning, just always those three.
Turning my iPad on, I made sure to check the local news headlines, like usual. But today, something was… Missing.
I couldn’t place my finger on it. Did I forget something? The strange feeling lingered with me all the way to my car. On my way out the front door I made certain to lock my door, then unlock it and lock it again.
Driving to work, I couldn’t help but feel like a part of me was missing.…
Have you ever forgotten your phone?
When did you realise you’d forgotten it? I’m guessing you didn’t just smack your forehead and exclaim ‘damn’ apropos of nothing. The realisation probably didn’t dawn on you spontaneously. More likely, you reached for your phone, pawing open your pocket or handbag, and were momentarily confused by it not being there. Then you did a mental restep of the morning’s events.
In my case, my phone’s alarm woke me up as normal but I realised the battery was lower than I expected. It was a new phone and it had this annoying habit of leaving applications running that drain the battery overnight. So, I put it on to charge while I showered instead of into my bag like normal. It was a momentary slip from the routine but that was all it took. Once in the shower, my brain got back into ‘the routine’ it follows every morning and that was it.
This wasn’t just me being clumsy, as I later researched, this is a recognised brain function. Your brain doesn’t just work on one level, it works on many. Like, when you’re walking somewhere, you think about your destination and avoiding hazards, but you don’t need to think about keeping your legs moving properly.…
We had just moved into a little ranch house in the suburbs. Storybook neighborhood – quiet, friendly neighbors, picket fences, the whole nine yards. Suffice it to say that this was supposed to be a new start for me, a recently single dad, and my three-year-old son. A time to move on from the previous year’s drama and stress.
I viewed the thunderstorm as a metaphor for this fresh start: one last show of theatrics before the dirt and grime of the past would be washed away. My son loved it anyway, even with the power out. It was the first big storm he’d ever seen. Flashes of lightning flooded the bare rooms of our house, imparting unpacked boxes with long creeping shadows, and he jumped and squealed as the thunder boomed. It was well past his bedtime before he’d finally settled down enough to go to sleep.
The next morning I found him awake in bed and smiling. “I watched the lightning at my window!” he proudly announced.
A few mornings later, he told me the same thing. “You’re silly,” I said. “It didn’t storm last night, you were only dreaming!” “Oh…” He seemed somewhat disheartened. I ruffled his hair and told him not to worry, there should be another storm soon.…