Monday, May 01, 2006

I was ready to hand him the check, but I hesitated, asking one more time, just to hear that wonderful description again, "And these experiences will be mine alone?"

"Absolutely," he assured me. His concerned look, and shock, at the insinuation that I may have mistrusted the integrity of Life Inc. seemed genuine to me. He went on: "Each and every experience is guaranteed unique and becomes your own personal property upon receipt. We maintain that the moment itself is fleeting, gone irretrievably before you can even begin to savor it. So who needs it? The true pleasure comes in the reliving of it, in which case the memory will only be as vivid as the words expressing it. As I've said, we employ the best creative talent in the industry. You will not regret having done business with us."

Satisfied, I turned the check over to the representative. He stood up, retrieved my folder from the filing cabinet, then placed the check among the papers I had filled out: the exhaustive personality tests, three of them, the twenty-page fantasy checklist and that massive preference profile. It had been an entire tedious day working through those. I looked at him to see what he would do next. He entered some words into the computer, clicked the mouse a few times, and soon the printer began humming. A moment later he handed me the printout.

"Now this is your profile confirmation. The url is at the top of the page. Please note the user id and password," he said, pointing to the line in question, "You'll need these to answer the comments you receive. You're ordering the basic service, so you will have to make your own comments, but please remember, you may at any time opt for the premium service, in which we offer the increased intensity that accompanies full passivity. But you may make that choice at any time you wish."

He smiled, I thanked him and left, exiting the office like a new person. It was such an exhilarating feeling, knowing my life had just begun. I could hardly wait to return to my apartment, curtains drawn, lights low, the warm glow of the monitor showing me my first post at the blog. "Read it three times, carefully," the instructions said, "closing your eyes a few minutes after each reading, to impress the vivid language into your psyche. As time passes, the content will be indistinguishable from an authentic recollection."

I set the blog url as my default start page, so that it would be right there whenever I switched on the pc. Then I saw: those people certainly work fast. The first post must have appeared as I was on my way home. I read the words, my introduction to the world, the new me, the me I would live and remember. I was 23, had just moved to the city, met a girl who fascinated me. I was back from the first night out with her and it had inspired me to start my blog. I read. I read it again and reread. It was all so promising. As I closed my eyes, I could almost feel that Lisa was in the next room, ready to return to me. I replayed the events of our first meeting, those magnetic moments, when eyes lock and silence binds. It was just as the man had promised. I remembered. I could actually remember. And then I waited in the dark, for my next post.

Story #360

All stories contributed here will be reposted at Thanks for all the comments and great stories - I'll comment on those tonight, and take a break in general and then figure out what happens next.

Previous post:
When I began this in August 2004 I posted one story a day for about half a year, then I changed to five a week, and lately it's been more sporadic. It's to the point where I need a short break from all this story writing, despite wanting to go on and on and on. Story number 360 has been the Nirvana, the Shangri Las, elusive pot of gold that is now right in before me. The story is already on paper.

What happens after this? This has always been an "experiment in creativity" for me, so I intend to write down my introspections of what I've learned. I want to move all these stories to a permanent URL somewhere. I still have some outstanding promises to take care of (some prizes, etc. form last year), the Indeterminacy diplomas, a poem for Alice, a challenge I accepted from Lazy Iguana to write a story to a photo at his blog, and one to one of Deryke's photos. I haven't forgotten. I am just very, very lazy. But don't all go and delete your links to Indeterminacy yet. I feel that something should go on here - I'm just not sure at the moment what or when.


Anonymous said...

I think I may be back with a story on this one; it's very close to my roots.
But I think you should continue to post at least the weekend story photos. We all love them so, and you wouldn't necessarily have to write one; somebody always comes through for you.

Paperback Writer said...

I agree! And you don't have to post *everyday*...

GPV said...

Yes, what about writing when you feel like it?

Young at Heart in San Diego said...

Oh Please don't leave us!! I know I have been very very lazy too, but can't you at least do the weekend stories? I don't know what I'd do without this site!

Anonymous said...

Dear Indie,
"maybe we are touching the same archetype"... I think it is the same 'One' that is holding on to us both... maybe even US ALL! I suppose we just arrive at different points of 'inner'spiration from the same diverse body expression and creativity...

It is important to remember and clarify the true purpose of why we do the things we do... 'i' suppose ultimately we're all on the same journey? Living to learn and learning to live. If you've time please read my entry 'The Re-Calling' maybe be you'll see the patterns of my footsteps in the vastness of the sand:

Indeterminacy said...

Everyone: I have mixed feelings about stopping. On the one hand I never wanted to do the same thing indefinately, on the other hand I like what I've built up. Maybe a story a week is OK, but I really need a haitus to gain the necessary distance - it's starting to feel like a treadmill.

Nyanda: Thank you for sharing that - I'll have a look at what you wrote.

admin said...

Story 360 already? I thought it would take some more months to reach that...

Setting goals is a very scary thing to me. That is because each time I have set one and achieved it, I stopped whatever I had taken up. Maybe it is a subonscious thing. Maybe it is only my idea. The truth is, I cannot imagine the blogosphere without indeterminacy. I am not sure how that will be. Actually indeterminacy was the reason I ever created a blog. Nevertheless, maybe you will take a break, regenerate and return with more power in this or another new project! Artists do need creative pauses. I hope you will keep us informed about the new website and any news! Thanks for the wonderful stories!

GPV said...

He had the whole week-end to himself, that was the first time in months, he’d been working hard and gave all his time to the company, his wife and three children were complaining about this and decided to leave the place wednesday afternoon to visit granny in the country.
On saturday morning he went on Royal st. and looked for old furniture in antique shops but didn’t buy anything, most idems were fakes anyway. He went to an english restaurant on Burgundy, food was perfect and he ordered a bottle of light Beaujolais to go with it.
Walking back home around 2 O’clock he received a phone buzz from Mrs Jameson,his secretary, he was to report to his office as fast as he could; The boss had a heart attack.
Everything went fast, once in the company’s building 10 minutes later, he learned that he was
chosen to be the new boss.
He sat in the fat armchair in his new office and found out it was the piece of furniture he was looking for in the morning.

Mutha said...

"The balding head is one thing," she thought, "But that tie clip. Jesus. I want to wrip it off him and chuck it across the room."

Carl had, after all been her obligatory "bad boy" fling in college. His once curly hair had hung daringly long in front of his eyes. His lean frame had seemed bound tight under the jeans and leather he wore then. Even his name had seemed tough.

Now, it sounded as if it could only be the name of a guy who looked just like this.

"And my God, that smile...He looks like the meds are kicking in."

She begged her brain to come up with something pleasant to say.

"Nice chair," was what came out of her mouth.

Mutha said...

Hey Indie:
Just found you man. Don't fold up tent now...But honestly, the site shouldn't feel like a treadmill. So take a break. Maybe even just post pictures for a while and let your friends and fans post...join in when the spirit moves you.


Jamie Dawn said...

Bob just loved his new Time Travel Chair. Marketed by Sharper Image, it was a steal at only six million dollars.
All weekend long, Bob traveled to the past. He was only an observer and was never able to leave his chair, but BOY did he enjoy he adventures!

I feel kind of like Bob. I have enjoyed the adventures I've taken through your stories and the stories of others.
360 stories is quite an accomplishment, and it has served to spark your imagination and ours.

Anonymous said...

Ralph Merton, Assistant Professor of English, gripped the arms of his chair and tried to smile as the guests arranged themselves. It was going to be a tense evening. At the time it had seemed a stroke of genius to get his wife out of his hair and into community theater. But her preparation for the starring role in WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF? was taking its toll.

Mutha said...

Dang Weirsdo -- that's funny.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Mutha. Yours has the ring of truth. But I would like to find out that my bad boy flings ended up like that. Serve them right.

The Mushroom said...

I had to look at the photograph name to confirm it was indeed #360... wow, so soon it came. The legacy you had stated you were seeking.

I think you should keep your options open and do what you see fit. As though you completed the project you sought, and now you're an "emeritus" who can freelance.
You have the Another Galaxy page to contribute to (it could use your momentum), you could create a Synchronicity of Indeterminacy - The Aftermath page with weekly contributions so it's more a sport than a job, and I have no doubt you'll still be the fly guy on all the blogs -- that's a hard habit to break.

It's not an ending of the story, it's a new chapter. Mystery authors (and readers) can tell you all about the sadness of ending one book being followed by the joy of beginning another, issue after issue into a beloved series with the familiar characters and different intregues.
- - -
Never understimate the power of a comfortable chair. Even paupers can be kings with the right throne.

Ariel the Thief said...

so something should go on. good. because I do want to read any stories you write in the future.

Anonymous said...

This has me in mind of Vanilla Sky... virtual realities of the 'sublime' kind... never really understood that word fully, but it seems to fit!

While you wait in the dark, I hope your thoughts will be illuminated and your energy rejuvenated! There are a lot of people out here who love what you do... and as such you are a great inspiration. We will await your next bout of vuluptuous words eagerly patient! All the best whatever and whenever you decide.

GPV said...

Man ! #360 is really a cool one,
that's a winner,I love that one Indie.

admin said...

I knew it from the beginning that there was something strange with this blog. Now you revealed the truth! :))

Excellent story!

Cooper said...

I understand completely Indie. Things change. Life goes on and our contributions to it ( and to the great land of blogs)also evolve in some way.

It will be missed but you will do with it what you need to do.

This last story gave me creppy chills and I don't know why. lol

Unknown said...

Indie, my experience has been that the few times I've shaken things up on my site, by adding stories and the guest and then switching to fiction have been the times I've had the most fun with it. I'll absolutely miss the old Synchronicity of Indeterminacy if you change it very much but at the same time, I highly recommend change. An addendum to that is that you've accomplished a lot in the last 360 stories. I think you can score a victory for what you've done and can do something a little different or a lot.

Sar said...

360 stories is amazing, Indie! So kudos to you for that accomplishment.

You'll find your groove, and be it once a day, week or month, know that I'm glad to have you around my friend. :)

Indeterminacy said...

Everyone again: It really sounds like a good idea to post just once a week. I often thought the daily rate of posting may have overwhlemed a lot of people who don't have time to stop by every day. It may also be cool to see how weekly posting effects the quality. I just would like a break where I don't have any self-imposed deadlines hanging over my head.

Nyanda: That was a great post, and helps me to contemplate the meaning of these Indeterminacy stories as a whole. I don't think I've run out of ideas, but I just need a change of routine for a while, that can bring more objectivity.

Mushroom: I think you put it into words better than I could have. That's exactly how it is. I've achieved my goal, now I can just go on without goals, and no pressure.

GPV: Looks like your character is going to be next in line for an upholstered coffin.

Mutha: maybe if you compliment him on his looks he'll let you sit in the chair.

Jamie: Ohmigod! He might be right here in the room with me! The time traveling voyeur!

Mrs. Weirsdo: I never thought of it, but this photo does look so universityish. Wonder if he'll think of a way out of this...

Mushroom: I wanted to start contributing to Another-Galaxy and also to Michael at blogin-idiot, who is also doing Friday stories. I like the freelance idea. I also have the Kurt Tucholsky blog I want to keep up.

Ariel: Thanks for the compliment.

Nyanda: Thanks also. I had no idea you saw the stories that way. It still puzzles me that anyone can.

GPV, Viruswitch: Thanks and thanks. Maybe this story is about all the lurkers out there, the blog readers we never see.

Alice: At the very least I will always be hanging out at your blog.

Doug: I've already thought about variations - like writing strictly autobiographically, or only with photos that are contributed (something like postsecret - which has become incredibly well-known).

Sar: I've said thank you so often now I don't know anymore variations to make it sound interesting.

Unknown said...

Indie, just to second Ariel, I'll keep coming by to see what you're doing. Let the transition take its course.

The Mushroom said...

When Berke Breathed was coming to the end of his mental rope with the creation he'd been nurturing for years, Bloom County, the last few strips appeared to be coming apart at the seams, as though entropy were emerging in the panels. The very last strip literally dissolves into the ether, while dropping a hint that there is life beyond this rainbow, and the last thing we see is Opus walking off into the void. After a breather, the universe re-materialized as Outland which had nothing to do with the previous few years' of work, other than the presence of Bill The Cat and Opus. Different galaxy, created to just bounce among the chaos without clear structure.

That's the direction you could take: you followed the structure and theme until the end, and now... time to create something without the same strictures. Everything is a test case, a proof of concept, if the sketch lasts as long as it has viability (an oblique reference to how 'Saturday Night Live' makes 30 second jokes last 8 minutes). This place isn't brinking on the end of the viability, but as the best storytellers say... leave 'em wanting more. Then give 'em something they weren't expecting.

Poirot said...

Oh mon dieu!

I wish for a private audience with MR Indie.

Russell CJ Duffy said...

i understand 100% how you feel. when i started blogging and therefore writing i was so full of passion for what i was doing and had such a 'head of steam' going that i ended up writing NINE blog sites.
you really don't have to write each and everyday. what you do write you write very well and i for one would be delighted to read your stuff on a weekly or even a fortnightly basis.
you shouldn't feel as if you have to write.

Indeterminacy said...

Poirot: I'd much rather have a private audience with Nancy Drew on her 18th birthday.

Cocaine Jesus: I really surprised myself with Indeterminacy because I never had the patience to stick with anything like that for so long. But I think the best part of the blog was that I kept the format focused. Weekly seems fine to me. I'm enjoying these days with no feeling that I have to blog.

The Whining Stranger said...

A great premise. I really am glad to have discovered this site.