June 28th, 2005


Words the English language needs to have

We need a conjunction which means "and/or".

We need a word which means "take the mustard and only the mustard off my burger, substitute it with mayonnaise and leave all that other stuff on there" (because half the time when I say "hold the mustard, add mayo" I get mayo only).

We need a word for that special warmth your eyeglasses have after the cat has been warming them for a while with his furry butt.

Any other words our language is missing...?

That is all. You may shop as usual. No need to return to your homes.

Work in progress

Pobrecito clips or tears the pictures out a few at a time and sells them on the streets of the colonia. He knows the magazines themselves would just be taken from him, before or after a beating, but a kid with a few slips of paper clutched in his hand is nothing. As long as no one looks too closely. But even if he had a pass for the gates, he dares not take them within the walls, for the priests would hang him in the square.

What he loves most about the magazines is not the nudity or the fucking or the strange combinations and arrangements these people found themselves in.

No, what he loves is that these are Americans. Beautiful people in beautiful places doing beautiful things together.

"I will be an American some day," he tells his friend Lucia. They are in the branches of the dying tree, sharing a bottle of pulque and a greasy bowl of fried plantains in the midday heat. Pobrecito has a secret place up there, a hollow in the trunk where he hides most of his treasures.

The magazines are stored elsewhere, in a place he has never even shown to Lucia.

(different) Work in progress

They walked in the shadows along the outer rim of the Second Esplanade. The Second Esplanade was a wide avenue, a sort of balcony circling the main center of Port Phalanx at the twenty-meter mark. Along the inner rim the railings were bright with brass, chrome and tinted glass, and planters hosted nasturtiums like colored punctuation marks. Kiosks and little stalls dotted the view down into the zero-meter streets of the city, and from some places the criss-cross of the higher levels opened to a view of the glass towers and the distant ceiling with its blue-hot sun torus.

The outer rim of the Second Esplanade, mere meters into shadow, was stark contrast. Little meat families or labor gangs slept in heaps, one or two pairs of fever-bright eyes keeping watch. Old or infirm clockwork smoked, stuttered and issued redundant loops of meaningless prophecy. Piles of junk, pulled from the recycling lines or surplus from the retail systems, stood like offerings meant to emulate the wealth that rose at the bright-lit center visible so close, just outside the shadow-line.

Edgeroll stepped over a twitching, whining clockwork leg inching along the Esplanade on some terminal errand of its own. He had found that watching his feet was preferable to actually thinking.