Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Brief Yet Wondrous Life Of A Flame Struck In The Dark - A Poem

Thursday, September 23Rd, 4:35 P.M.
Mood: Foggy, Slightly Bored
Music: Life In Technicolor Part 2., by Coldplay

The Brief Yet Wondrous Life Of A Flame Struck In The Dark - A Poem

The darkness crept in all around,
and filled the air without a sound,

The utter darkness hung about,
that filled the senses, stilled the shout,

And brought to one a dreaded feeling,
so dark, so cold, and yet revealing,

Of the tears, the moans, the screaming,
and the places, cold and teeming,

With the creatures of most ancient and forgotten lore.

Then for a second, a brief second,
light burst forth, though darkness beckoned,

Shattering the darkness, dispelling the gloom,
lighting the contents of the forgotten room you stood in so long ago.

And for moment fire shone,
and lit the air, the dust, the stone,

In that place now so far away.

And then it flickered, waved and sputtered,
as the wind with sighs and mutters,

Sought to quench the flame so dear,
the light that banished
darkest fear,

And then at last there in the dark,
the flame dimmed to but a spark,

And then at last the flame receded,
though it's light was sorely needed,

And the dark came swirling back,
from the corners and the cracks,

And filled the room once more.

What is the flickering of the fire but a life?

To be born into darkness.

To bring light.

To live.

To love.

And to dim, in the fullness of time,

leaving the mystery of darkness as it was when we came.

Is it not extraordinary?

The simple life of a flame struck in the dark.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

I Finish A SteamPunk Novel (Tolstoy And Wonderful, Groznium Powered Robots)

Thursday, September 2Nd, 4:18 P.M.
Mood: Tired, Slightly Disenchanted
Music: Accelerate, by REM

I finished Android Karenina today. It was produced by Quirk Books, which also produced Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, to great reception amongst obscure literary circles. Ben H. Winters, the mash up author of this work, did a stunning job of converting Tolstoy's descriptions of early Russia into a bustling SteamPunk paradise.

Gone are the starchy upper class people wandering about with parasols. Gone are the coal fired trains, the domestic servants, and the villainous Tsar Alexi Alexandrovich. In their place are the by far more awesome hovering "grav" trains, companion robots designed to mimic their masters, and in place of the book's corrupted Alexi, we now enjoy the despicable mannerisms of "THE FACE".

"THE FACE" is, in fact, a mechanical face grafted onto Alexi's. So that rather than being corrupted by the inner turmoil of early Russian politics, he is corrupted by a mechanical oculus bearing face that speaks into his mind.

There are also aliens, trips to the moon, androids, artificial limbs, and more robots than one could count. The book was excellent, I thought it extremely good. Why not read it for yourself?

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Steampunk Shopping

Wednesday, September 1St, 4:13 P.M.
Mood: Happy, Whimsical
Music: The Ghost Inside, by The Broken Bells

I like SteamPunk, this much is clear. So when I want to buy a new oculus, monocle, cane, etc. I really have to look. I have found a few good sources though. Etsy is FANTASTIC as far as SteamShopping (to coin the phrase) goes. I found a few sellers that produce amazing works of art that are not only ornamental but functional.

Oldjunkyardbotique on Etsy is great for wearable items for a decently low price, you can view their page here. The picture at right is of their "Tesla Goggles" and it is going for $35.00 nicely priced and good looking, as well as functional, perfect for that lightning experiment I had in mind.

The other seller I found is SteamPunkDesign. You can see their page here. The marvoulus pieces that this craftsman creates are incredible. These are NOT things to wear during your experiments. No, these are the things that the classic SteamPunk denizen wears to costume balls and keep in velvet lined cases in safes when not in use. These items sell for hundreds of dollars and are created from the finest brass and leather. The picture at left is a pair of their dual oculars, selling for $160.00.

Those are my sources for SteamPunk atire, be it goggles, gas masks, monocles or teaflasks. And thus finishes my Steam Culture post for today.