Saturday, August 21, 2010

Don't Even Try to Pretend That I'm the Freak at This Table

A man walks into a dimly lit bar, like countless men before him. He walks up to the counter, takes a seat, and asks for his favorite beer. As he sits there drinking, another man enters and sits down next to him.
They both drink in silence.
"You seem familiar," the second man says with a smirk.
"I don't believe we've met."
"I very much doubt that."
"Please," the first man says, "I just want to be left in peace."
"Peace? No such thing. What's got you down, friend?"
"My wife left me."
"We weren't cheating were we?" the second man says with a dark look in his eye.
"No," says the first. "She was. She cheated and then she left me. How is that fair?"
"I know how you feel, friend. My father disowned me many years ago simply for asking questions. Questions such as this: If you could change one thing about your life--about this world that you live in--what would it be?"
The first man sits in silence for a long time.
"I'd have my wife back."
The second man reaches into his coat, pulls out a pistol, and puts six bullets through the torso of the bartender, who falls to the floor, motionless and crimson.
"Still the same answer?" the second man asks.
The first man stands up calmly and walks out of the bar.
"Be seeing you," says the second.

Friday, August 20, 2010

This is not how the world ends...

I stand here, within the walls of a shrine dedicated to stories, and feel completely at home. Images of timeless heroes and villains, gods and monsters, symbols and icons adorn the walls. Millions of ideas flow from the shelves in the form of words.
I'm at work. I work at Pegasus Books of Bend, a comic and bookstore in downtown Bend. No one is in the store, nor has there been for a few minutes. And yet I'm not bored. I always find something new in here to be fascinated by. I wish more people would realize that this store and others like it aren't just havens for nerds. This store contains entire worlds and universes within its pages. The imaginations and minds of countless people are captured in here. You could learn a lot about how the way people think in here, and the way that has changed over time. This is stuff you don't get in history books. Fiction teaches you the important stuff. Think about it. In school, when you learn about the Victorian era or the post-modern era in school, what class do you learn about it in? English. While you might get big political events in "history," you get what was happening with the real people in the stories they tell.
Want to understand your world?
Read a book.