Monday, April 10, 2006

The Skybot X3000 landed following a successful mission in the air. Its ion brain emitted thought after thought in programmed efficiency, replaying its actions of the last hours. Binary insights passed in review like footsteps on stepping stones. Beside the ability to reason, the X3000 was a master of critical analysis:

- You released all the devices.
- They crumbled the structures.
- Static and organic.
- A perfect mission.
- Monumental achievement.
- ***classify emotion***classify emotion***
- Internal state is pleasant.
- ***final warning***reload ammo cache***

...which was of course why the Skybot X3000 had touched down. The X3000 itself was a perpetual, self-winding entity of lasting endurance, but eventually the ammunition must be replenished. That was the one drawback of the fully automatic pilots, skirting the heavens, scanning the ground for targets to reform. Otherwise they could stay in the air for years, holding the war, while the parties at home joyed on. Some argued that the automatic warriors degraded the value of life, but the complex mechanisms were developed at such a high expense of both money and human effort, that others argued it proved the value of those lives it touched.

Story #352

Thanks for all the contributions! Stories have been reposted at

Postscript: I've finally begun reorganizing the links in my sidebar. This is just a start, until I refine the categories. Probably some of the links could be in a better category. All feedback is welcome!

Monday's Postscript: I noticed that some blogs I thought I linked to are not in my link list. I'm trying to fix this. But if anyone notices that they are not linked and would like to be, please leave a message about it or send me a mail. I've always tried to link back to the blogs that linked to me. But I sometimes didn't catch sight of it.


viruswitch said...

The reorganising of the links is pretty cool! I saw it yesterday? and thought its great.

viruswitch said...

He was not dead. The crowd had not killed him. Because Donald was not at the first place. The reluctant Messiah had managed to bringth forth another of his famous illusions. "It is all an illusion, Richard" he exclaimed once again, as he climbed down his airplane. "The art of life consists in learning to create them but also in recognising them.", Richard stood speechless in front of Donald and saw a cloud dissolve into the air. Invisible music lifted his spirits up once more. He was about to get emotional when objects started to fly around him hovering, just like the clouds that were disappearing. "There can be no sadness if you are aware of the illusion." Donald kept on. "But there can also be no joy." Richard replied. Donald gazed at the endless fields that surrounded them and said: "You are right. Because joy is another illusion, even if its a persistent one. It is all just a game. Now let us fly again." Richard and Donald climbed in their small airplanes and flew away into the red sunset.

PS: This story is inspired by the boo "Illusions" by Richard Bach. It was the first thing that came in my mind when I saw the picture. I think that the whole world has read this book along with his "Jonathan Livingstone Seagull".

Mutha said...

"His name could be Mac," Jeremy thought. "Mac's a cool name. Tough-sounding, a guy's guy."
Jeremy inched even closer to the toy plane, squooshed his body down so it was even more compact. If he squinted his eyes, he could imagine the pilot smiling at him. Imagine him saying, "Hop in, son."

"Okay Dad," Jeremy whispered.

And he imagined himself behind his Dad/Pilot, earphones on, speeding -- faster, faster and then finally leaving the ground.

Jeremy closed his eyes and felt the swooping drop of his insides: like going over a roller-coaster hill, like how flying must feel.

Mutha said...

Thanks for the mention on your links Indie. Much obliged!

AP3 said...

Rodney was tired of being a love doll. He had been a blow-up love doll for 15 years, and the years of one-night-stands at frat and sorority parties had grown tiresome, and even disgusting, to "Rodney the Rod".

One day, Rodney saw a letter that had originally been addressed to an Air Force ROTC cadet at the frat house. It was a brochure about a private pilot course in Florida. "Learn to fly", it said. "Become a pilot and see the world."

Rodney was intrigued immediately. He had dreams about it for days until it grew into an obsession.

A few weeks later, some frat boys from the University of Miami were visiting their brothers at the university where Rodney had been effectively held hostage.

Rodney put the charm on one of the Miami boys, and sure enough, before he knew what was happening he was being deflated and packed into the boy's duffle bag.

The next thing he remembered, he was inflated again. As if by a miracle, he was at the pilot school in Florida, in the cockpit of a private plane!

Rodney thought perhaps he'd died and gone to love doll heaven.

Jamie Dawn said...

Damn that motion sickness!
Greg barfed every time he flew, whether he had just eaten or not. One time, he purposely skipped breakfast and still barfed. How could that BE?
Today, Greg decided that if he barfed, he was going to dive bomb straight into the ocean and become fish food.
It took quite ahwile for the sharks to get to him.

The Mushroom said...


I know, too simple, but doesn't this look like one of those adventure shows featuring marionettes?!

cooper said...

I don't have time for story this weekend but for some reason the minute i clicked on this link that picture made me laugh. Now I have to spend time trying t figure out why.

weirsdo said...

Aviator Sam made his emergency landing all right, but he had no idea where the vortex had taken him.
Suddenly he saw plastic figures like himself coming towards him over the dusty runway. But these figures were monstrous, right out of LORD OF THE RINGS.
"Are you Captist?" they demanded roughly.
Sam was not sure if they wanted him to be that or not.
"Do you worship the Cat God?" they clarified, pulling him unceremoniously from the cockpit.
"Uh--Should I?" asked Sam.
The figures confered among themselves. Sam gathered that they were debating whether to send him to Camp Pussycat for "reorientation" or somewhere else.
Finally they mounted dinosaurs and threw him up behind their leader, General Arshmol. "Where are you taking me?" Sam quavered.
Mrs. General Arshmol grunted. "You are an uncaptist human figure. We are taking you to the Barbies."
Sam was no dummy. "Please!" he exclaimed, summoning all his acting skills. "Whatever you do, don't take me to those awful creatures!"
Mrs. General Arshmol chuckled a little and bopped him on the head, knocking him unconscious.
When he came to, he was in the land of his dreams, the land of naked Barbie gymasts.

Young at Heart in San Diego said...

I'm honored to be a groovy girl! Thanks for including's my story:
Las Vegas control tower, this is Stinson mike echo juliett, ready for takeoff. Roger, mike echo juliett, cleared for takeoff. Thanks, tower, and stop calling me Roger. Steve had completed his mission in the dusty Nevada hills and was ready to go somewhere to get some comfort and downtime. Somewhere away from the scorching desert. Someplace cool and green where he could have some pleasant company and a tall cool drink with a tropical garnish. So he did the only sensible thing. He headed south of the border, down Mexico way. In a few hours he was seated under a palapa on the beach, looking out at the whales as they migrated through the warm blue water. He turned to the lovely senorita seated across the bar. Surely you will let me buy you a drink, he asked. Of course, senor. And stop calling me Shirley.

Indeterminacy said...

Viruswitch: I'm happy about the new categories, too. It helps people find things they might like more easily. I know that no one wanted to click through a list of 100 random links.

Your story is thoughtful and profound. I am sorry, though, but I have not read either of the two books you mentioned, despite knowing that "everybody" has. Recently I picked up a copy of JLS, so at least I have that one to read!

Mutha: That story is truly felt. And I think it fits the actual scene. The set was a father and son out with their model airplane.

Aral: That's so imaginative! And very caring about the love dolls. It might shock LBOS, though...

Jamie: A kamakazee story! Wow!

Mushroom: Yes it does, now that you mention it. This may be the shortest story/caption yet.

Alice: Maybe because it was funny? I thought there was something transcendentally humorous about the photo, but I wasn't sure what. It has something.

Mrs. Wiersdo: I always enjoy what you write, and secretly, even what Pansi writes, but don't tell her. I enjoyed the flow of the story, and now I want to read part two to find out what the Barbies do with him.

Young at Heart: Never expected the Shirley ending. Very cleverly done! I'll take Steve's fantasy.

Doug said...

That's a really fun take on the rise of the machines. I like the story, Indie. Hey, you aren't really going to stop at 360, are you?

weirsdo said...

I like how the toy became evil in your story, Indie.
The Barbie sequel is adult material, but I believe a version of it may be found in ANDROID LUST.

Indeterminacy said...

Doug: I'm glad you thought the story was fun. 360 is such a fine number, don't you think?

Mrs. Weirsdo: I didn't think the toy was evil exactly. Just programmed to do what it was intended for. Of course the writer can never be absolutely sure of the mood his/her writing creates. For the Barbie sequel I'll look around pansifiles for the special access area. Should I have my credit card ready?

Jamie Dawn said...

Good one, Indie. I guess if we make robots to fight wars for us, then we can eat cake while the battles rage on.
I just hope I'm not in their cross-hairs.

LiVEwiRe said...

I must, must, must read more carefully... I thought it said "squirting the heavens", as opposed to 'skirting'. You know, that does dramatically change the concept of the entire sentence! This made me think. And I'm not referring to the squirting part of it all.

gerard valz said...

The feeling.

There was only two things that really interested David: Airplanes and “feeling” things.
From early school days it was obvious that everything else left him bored and he didn’t pay much attention to the various teachers trying their best to make him read, write and learn
what you have to learn in school.
David was smelling the classroom, listening to city sounds and bird’s twickings coming through the windows and whenever a jet went by he followed its course ‘till the white line
disapeared behing the window’s frame.
As soon as the school bell rang around 3 P.M. he would leave and walk to the bus station
but instead of a ride home, Dave went the opposite way and got off at the airport where he watched planes land and take off untill five before he finaly headed for his house.
His parents got used to get Ds, Es and Fs notes on his school work, strangely enough Dave
made no mistakes when writing and seemed at ease with mathematics provided it hadn’t to be done in school, he knew a good deal of history and geography and everything that is taught in High School. David never worked at all.
Dave was 16 when his parents moved to to the country, few miles from Baton Rouge La.
he found the Aeroflight Cajun Club in the yellow pages and spotted it’s location on the map,
Since they moved in their new house on a saturday Dave went straight to the landing field that very afternoon, he staid there watching planes take off and land ‘till nightfall.
There was an old man standing near by, doing the same thing Dave was doing, just watching.
Almost everyday they stood near the field so that they soon started to speak to each other.
When the old man told David he’d been a pilot in the Pacific, the boy asked him if he flew for the Navy “Yes, since the start” said the man.
-Oh, then you know about Wildcats, Hellcats and Corsairs, P-38’s were Army.
-Yes indeed, you do know about planes,don’t you?
-I got the “feel” of them
-The what ?
-The “feel” you know
-No I don’t, what do you mean?
-Well…’s how it sounds, looks and everything.It’s the feeling of how it is.
-For example?
-What carrier where you on?
-Enterprise (proudly)
-Ok here goes the feel of It
It sounded so much like the clearance’s words from the Wildcat’s radio that the old man was driven back some 40 years ago.What followed left him aghast, he heard the engine of a Wildcat start and speed up, heard the wheels roll on the deck, he heard the different sound when the plane was over the ocean and finaly the radio again “Leader Manhattan to you boys,going south-east, care to join me?”
-How in the hell can you do that? How can you? Is that the “feel”?
-Yea, that’s part of it, it’s not perfect,of course, but if I ‘d been there I could do better.
-Jesus Christ ! That sounds perfect to what I remember and I ‘ve been there.
Listen David, do you want a plane of your own?
-Oh boy ! Yes sir.. but..
-No buts Dave, you do some little things like this on my TV show and you’ll have a plane in less then… let’s say three months. OK?
How about a blue one?

weirsdo said...

Viruswitch: I just read your story. I thought it was a very good parody--I recognized it way before you told us.

Indeterminacy said...

Livewire: What an imagery it gets with squirting! I think it's even better.

Gerard: Thanks for another wonderful story that goes beyond the photo. You bring ideas into this that I never could have gotten out of the photo alone. I'm really lucky to have such visitors at indetermiancy.

Weirsdo: Sometimes I'm such a Kulturbanause - I haven't read enough books. Can you send me the Mrs. Weirsdo literary canon? (really, I'm serious).

viruswitch said...

@weirsdo: You are right, I read it again imagining Jerry Seinfeld as Richard and Kramer as Donald. Very funny :)). But when I wrote it I was actually serious.

@Indie: Not true. I know you have read many books and difficult ones. Books of the Richard Bach type might be interesting and philosophical but they are easy to read. Nevertheless, do read JLS, it used to be my favourite book until I read Siddharta by Herman Hesse.

weirsdo said...

When I was 8 and JLS was all the rage I read it and was deeply impressed. Sadly it may be too late for you, Indie. It would now not make the Weirsdo literary canon, and I hated ILLUSIONS, which was recommended to me by a teenage drug addict friend. I would rate Bach (Richard, not J. S.) with Kahlil Gibran (spelling?) and other phony mystics.

viruswitch said...

I never thought of them as mystics. Just interesting and inspiring writers, thats all. Gibran was a very poetic person with a tragic personality. Some of his Prophet parts are amazing. His letters show his whole sadness and pessimistic attitude towards life. Very touching.