#1
Unedited. Figured I'd delete the last couple posts and put them all together so you can get the whole effect, or whatever. Leave a link because this is quite long and I would like to return any favors. Also, it was too long for one post so the rest of it is in the first reply.


"The Magpie robin,” thought Alexander, “Now that’s a magnificent bird.” After reflecting on that last thought and deeming it a satisfactory thought to be had at that current time, at that exact location where he had it and forever will be having it in infinity, Alexander went on, “Ann’s Hummingbird, also a splendid creature. I’d like to meet this Anna to appraise her beauty and determine whether or not she’s worthy of having such a lovely creature named after her.”

He stopped walking and glanced around at the trees that enclosed him in that particular circle of forestry: Robinias and Umbeluularias, Acer Rubrums and Cornus Kousas, Betula Jacquemontils and so forth. Alex knew the latin names of all the trees one was to encounter in the Oregon wilderness. He had purchased a book on Oregon forestry from a used bookstore on his block and spent the afternoon memorizing the Latin name of every tree in the book.

“The Fraxinus’, the Chamaecypairs, the Cedrus and Bettlas. The Ilex and Liquidambad. The Picea and Pinus and Quercus and Robinias!”

He wasn’t sure which, if any of these trees were present, he just needed something to mull over listlessly in his loquacious mind as he waited for an Anna’s Hummingbird to appear.

Alexander had accidentally stumbled upon a documentary on birds, or “Aves” as would be likely to call them, which instantly stirred a new found love for the species in him, which he claims he has always possessed, but just never been conscious of. He went immediately to a sporting goods store in his neighborhood (or, first, he stopped at the same used bookstore to purchase a book on birds) and bought a pair of binoculars and a whistle. He hadn’t the slightest clue as to why he had bought the whistle as it was an almost offensive substitute, if a substitute at all, for a bird call, but he was sure he’d need it eventually. He slung it around his neck and wore it like a scapula.

While at the department store Alex managed to chance upon a couple of other bird enthusiasts. He had hoped they would ask, “Oh! So you love birds too?”

To which he would answer, “Aves? Oh God, Yes! Always have and always will. I am certainly a bird enthusiast, or, connoisseur, if you’d like. What is it I love about them? Ha! Oh my! What a silly question. What is it I don’t love about them?”

But they never asked.

Alex asked them where he may be able to chance upon an Anna’s Hummingbird in all it’s majestic glory. They gave him a precise location which he had actually visited hundreds of times before when he felt like he had something to contemplate only to get there and find that he had nothing to contemplate save for contemplating why he had nothing at all to contemplate. He didn’t ever remember seeing any birds there on any of his previous visits.

“Thank you fellow bird lover,” said Alexander. “Oh, and one more thing; Have you ever met this Anna before? And if so, could you tell me where I could find her?”
Confused, they answered, “Oh, no. Sorry sir.”

Alex walked away indifferently knowing that if this Anna was still alive, she's most likely just as elusive as the bird named for her (which turns out, really isn't that elusive after all). He also thought that these fellow bird lovers may just be hiding her location so they can keep her to themselves, but Alex wasn't one for conspiracy theories, so he dismissed that idea quickly.

As Alex slowly made his way to Calahanda State Forest where we was to encounter his first Anna's Hummingbird, he came upon the neighborhood he grew up in as a child which he hadn't visited for 10 years. He couldn't think of any conscious effort made in the past to avoid his old neighborhood, he just simply forgot about it. Poof! Tyohoo! Like one forgets about a turkey in the oven or a child in the park.
After a short, succinct deliberation, Alex won the argument with himself and decided to venture through his old neighborhood. He couldn't at that time remember an argument that he didn't win with himself, and couldn't think whether or not that was good or bad. He decided it was good after much rumination, and again, congratulated himself on another argument won.

Alex grew up on the south-eastern side of town, the town being Calahanda, the south-eastern side being closer to the Earth's equator than the north-eastern side (directions, or a history lesson Alex gave a friend once when the friend asked him where he lived). The south-eastern side is filled with white people and miles of forestry, forestry that, unannounced to Alex until now, contains a thriving Anna's Hummingbird population. Alex rationalized the enormous white population that existed on the south side of town away by saying that, "The whites want to get closer to the sun to get tanner, whereas the blacks want to get away from the sun to get whiter." He didn't know if he was right, and he didn't really care. When Alex was given an audience he just said whatever came to his mind first.

After church one morning his parents were speaking with a large group of their friends outside and everyone at once turned to Alex and told him how handsome he'd become and how much he'd grown and such. They asked him what he was learning in the 5th grade and if he liked his teachers or not. What was the gospel about today, Alex? Did you like it? Alex said, "I don't get what's so special about this Jesus guy anyway. So he had nails pounded through his hands. I mean...I mean, that's the easy way out. At least he never had to watch his parents or kids die. I'd take nails in my hands too before watching my parents or kids or siblings die. I think he was just a pussy. I wouldn't say that to his face, but I'll say it right now."

Alex's parents and parents friends stared in awe of what Alex just said. Everyone was shocked, to say the least. To this day Alex doesn't believe that he's ever said anything wiser. He may be correct, or at least close to correct.

The street Alex lived on until he was 17 was called Apple Street. The houses were all brightly colored in colors like canary yellow, sailor blue, apple red, pumpkin orange, and etcetera. It always looked like fall on Apple Street (especially during the fall) no matter which season you happened to chance upon the neighborhood.

Alex's house was exactly the 15th house on the block coming from either the east or the west, and Alex was proud of this. He took pride in being the center most house in the neighborhood. Alex felt as though he was the mediator between the east and west sides, and would often instigate disputes between children from the separate sides just to sit them down and talk them through the problem.

North of Alex's house you could see mountains towering over the horizon trying to protect the secrets of whatever towns lie behind them. The mountains were covered mostly in trees until you got to the tops, where there was snow and mud that had the consistency of ice cream and the taste of snow and mud. South of Alex's neighborhood was made up solely of fields and abandoned farms with silos shooting up like turrets towards the heavens, or heaven, or nothingness-whichever you prefer.

Alex's old house was a bright yellow split-level with two giant elms hogging most of the front lawn. When he lived there as a child his parents had at least 20 bird feeders in the front and back yard, but Alex never took any particular notice of any of the birds back then. He did though, find immense interest in the seeds that the feeders were filled with. Alex would always steal a handful and make birdseed brownies or birdseed cupcakes at night after his parents had fallen asleep. He wasn't naive enough to think eating them would make him fly or anything, he just liked the taste.

As Alex came upon the driveway of his old house for the first time in 10 years, he felt nothing. No fond family memories sprang to mind. No sentimental longings. No nostalgic whatever’s. He forgot that the house had shutters. He also forgot it had a front door. He barely recognized the house at all and was surprised that he was even able to pick it out from the other 3 yellow houses that were right next to his. He was smart though and had counted the houses as he walked down the street until he got to 15, so he knew for sure it was his.

Alexander is not a robot and I will assure you he is not devoid of feelings, it's just that sometimes something’s you think you will remember and be nostalgic about all your life present themselves to you 10 years later and you feel nothing at all. If you feel nothing when you see an ex-lover after years of not seeing them, it's best to at least feign sentiment for their sake, but houses, well houses can't feel so it doesn't matter much how you react to them, they won’t be sore or anything.

The house was up for sale. There was a a sign in the front lawn with a picture of a man apparently named Mark Willenburg of Mark Willenburg's Realty and he is smiling like you smile when you have sex for the first time. Alex wondered what might be going on in the bottom half of the picture that is cut off below Mark's neck. He thought maybe he was getting a hand job. Maybe some young girl is getting him off and he told someone to take a picture of him because he won't ever be that happy again for the rest of his life. Now that moment is forever marked in time, except that the girl is cropped out so she no longer exists in that moment, just fat old Mark Willenburg with an exuberant smile plastered on his wrinkled, chubby face grinning for all infinity.
Last edited by rushmore at Jul 21, 2011,
#2
Alex ventured slowly up to the front window of the house to peer inside the living room. Something about the house kept him distant. It felt like the house in your old neighborhood that your friends dare you to run up and touch, the house where a whole family was murdered or where someone hung themselves in the attic. After being called "pussy" enough you eventually do it, but there was no one there to egg Alex on, so he approached slowly with the Earth spinning around as a soft breeze slowly carried him forward.

As he got the window he cupped his hands around his face to look inside and saw nothing but empty rooms and lonely olive carpet. His breath fogged up the window and he wrote "Hello" in the fog because he couldn't think of anything clever to say. Alex was always writing sayings on windows or picnic tables or bathroom stalls. He never wrote dirty things, just typically greetings and small sayings. On the wall of one bathroom stall he etched a small quote by E.E. Cumming and when he came back next time someone had crossed out the E.E. and replaced it with I'm so it read, "I'm Cummings". People can be funny sometimes when they want to be.

The landscaping around the house was a sore sight. The wood chips surrounding the sparsely trimmed shrubs looked like dead teeth. There was a marble bird bath in back with an angel as a pedestal that was filled with bird shit and dead leaves where all the alcoholic birds down on their luck congregate to pass cold nights. A hammock was strung between the tops of two tiny pine trees planted the spring before and Alex decided to stretch himself out on it. As he did the tops of the tiny pine trees bent swiftly in and the hammock caved to the ground.

From the ground the sky seemed recognizable to Alex. The dazzling panoply of the clouds gradual march towards their dissemination point, which happens to be everywhere, hypnotized Alex. He had seen the sky from this perspective before. A tiny pea packed into an enormous tin can floating about in space trying to grasp the infinite with only a few decades of good, capable brains to do so with.

Alex, for as long as he could remember, likened himself to a pea. He had heard a story when he was younger about an author who lived in the 18th century who, by request, was turned into a lone pea and set on a shelf. The man grew up similar to everyone else in his town. He had a circle of friends and ate lunch at a table with them in different diners and such whenever given the opportunity. When this man turned 24 and finished university, he published his first book. This book compared all men and women to tiny little peas. He said, “Besides our small, neglected nutritional value, we are no more significant than peas.” He scorned consciousness. He said thinking was worthless as it will lead us nowhere but death. This man was named John Elmore Dolman. He despised most things in life when he turned twenty-one. The one thing he did enjoy though was sex. Everyone in town speculated as to what brought about his sudden cynicism, but none of them were smart enough to guess it was life itself.

After the publication of his book, the town turned on him. His friends likened him to a coward. The lone literary critic in the 18th century who operated out of a tiny shack in the country and was read by nobody called it a “piece of shit”. Whenever John Dolman left his house or was seen on the streets people threw peas at him, sometimes peas still packed in a can if they were on hand or somewhere nearby. (Noteworthy: This throwing of peas can be pinpointed as the first encounter of fruit being tossed at people who are disliked.)

John Elmore Dolman, after years of being scorn in public, became completely reclusive. He never left his house or answered his door for anyone except a little girl who befriended him and, though she was only seven, thought all people were like peas as well. This little girl, whose name was Eleanor Anthony, would go to the market and buy food and other necessities for Mr. Dolman. Very rarely was she allowed to come inside, but on occasion he would let little Eleanor come in and observe him do nothing. On occasion, he would speak with her. She was the only human being capable of making him feel any sort of joy, as she too thought life was meaningless, thus their relationship thrived in its meaninglessness and neither of them felt obligated to construe any meaning out of any of their actions or conversations, rather; they just appreciated their pea-like existence.

Eleanor Anthony was a timid girl. She, like John Elmore Dolman, was very much afraid of the world. At seven years old there isn’t much to be afraid of, unless you realize that there really is, in which case you should learn to make love with your pillow and get comfortable with the perspective of the world through a glass sheet window. Eleanor didn’t go to school, yet she was smarter than every kid who did attend. She died when she was eight of pneumonia. No one is so smart or naive that they can escape death, not even little Eleanor Anthony.

When Eleanor died, John Elmore Dolman asked aloud, not to God or the Holy Spirit or anything divine like that, but to the walls, the furniture, the silverware, and everything else that was around him that he could touch and that was real and that he knew was real because he could touch it and when he did it sent sensations through his fingertips and hands and then to his brain and he knew then that he was touching it; He asked to be turned into a pea. The furniture, the silverware, the walls, the kitchen sink, the dining room ceiling, the fireplace, and all the other tangible objects near John Elmore Dolman granted him his wish.

The story goes that John Elmore Dolman spent the rest of his existence as a lone pea on the shelf of his home that was bought and sold for many years until it was torn down sometime in the late 1800’s. No one knew if life as a pea was any better than life as a sentient being because they could not communicate with peas. The story goes that a little girl who lived in the house with her family decades later found the old pea on the shelf, took it between her fingers, and squashed it. Thus though, is the cycle of life.
#3
bravo. i'm glad you are writing. that was very enjoyable, matty. people may tell you to cut out your ramblings but i'd be sad if you did - they make these things very you.

slightly relevant to the story -
have you seen the movie mary & max? if not, you should; i think it's on netflix but idk
do you read vonnegut? if you haven't done this already, read palm sunday
there's this guy who designs houses that are split in half by two inch spaces, there's a whole philosophy on suburban culture attached to it... i'll find his name and send it your way
Quote by Arthur Curry
it's official, vintage x metal is the saving grace of this board and/or the antichrist




e-married to
theguitarist
minterman22
tateandlyle
& alaskan_ninja

#4
if you stop writing this i will hunt you down.

in other news, i am still very interested in whale blue, its just writing-wise i've been focused on finishing up this lengthy collection of vignettes into a final product (comes out in 2-3 days as a free unillustrated web copy!). but dont give up on my support for whale blue just yet!
#5
Saadia, I've already thanked you, so shut up. And I will check the movie out, of course.

Dylan, thanks a lot. Let me know when you're ready and we can try to get it off the ground. I'd like to get a real website going eventually and make it a legit online journal.