Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, you know that in recent months the raucous discussion of women’s issues has reached epic– or maybe epidemic— proportions. Some of the heated discourse revolves around specific, male-dominated toxic issues, like GamerGate, but there’s also a general sense that men from all walks just don’t get how to approach women. Especially those they don’t actually know.
Subsequently, I’ve noticed a lot of related angst prevalent among men, many of whom are intrinsically decent but often come across, inadvertently, as the very boors they endeavor not to be. I should know.
On occasion, I’ve been one.
May I say a tiny two things about the “call-out culture” article and related discussions I’ve seen over last couple days? TYSM *plop*
— Andrea Grimes (@andreagrimes) March 3, 2015
here's the #DFW weather recap & forecast including last night & into tomorrow: rain, sleet, snow, light traffic, slush, freeze, Armageddon
— Randy (@texrat) February 23, 2015
Today’s electronic immediacy though means everything is local and instant. Geographic boundaries have been replaced by ideological ones that realign our interests and attention. Thanks to the Internet, I can be a better neighbor to Timo the programmer in Finland than what’s-his-name who lives across my street.
But knowing each other’s news doesn’t necessarily put us on the same page.
Bradbury’s evocative visuals in Rocket Summer led me as a twelve-year old to imagine that anyone could assemble a space-worthy vehicle with the right parts and know-how. Like many in the 1970s who got caught up in the great Space Race, I had a reasonable understanding of propulsion and was not remotely dissuaded by the fact that all of my homemade missiles had exploded on the launchpad.
Surely I just needed the proper materials; Mom’s rich assortment of household chemicals labeled Flammable! Danger! Explosive! just weren’t doing the trick, no matter how many I mixed together.
I intend to start by publishing ebooks on Amazon, and from there who knows. I anticipate that the first release will be Downtime, a dystopic tale about survivors of a destructive planetary shift in the future.
I’m presenting a draft of Downtime’s introduction here for your critical pleasure. Feedback is welcome; note that this portion is mostly solidified but subject to tweaking and tightening (some passive voice needs attention, for one).
I will be sharing the full version with a select few after completion of the first draft. I will especially be needing guidance on Finnish culture and dialog.
The Internet at large seems to believe I need more help than that. Aside from ads trying to sell me what I’ve already purchased, I’m besieged by helpful spammers. Every tweet, post or article I create is apparently just another vehicle for injecting my needs into some harvesting bot stream, and boy do they capitalize on it. Reverse Tinnitus offers one email after I complained on Facebook. Brain Power Without Limits promises another.
No idea what specifically triggered the second one. It could just be my general content.
Speaking of machines… one of the toughest concessions I made due to marriage was choosing automotive practicality over preference. I’ve always been a utility or sports vehicle guy. But there’s nothing remotely sporty about the white, under-powered 1980 Oldsmobile Cutlass I drove with gritted teeth during the halcyon years of married life. The idiot who eventually stole it removed a huge albatross from my pack-animal neck.