Monday, April 30, 2007

Lost Goddess's Picture and Motto

This week's picture and motto comes from Lost Goddess:

The world is infinite so stay in the barn so you don't get lost

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Five Questions

I don't usually participate in theses things but it was Tracy Lynn. You all know how sexy and dangerous she is, I couldn't resist her charms. I begged her to include me.

Here are her questions:

1) Are there any sports you like? Why/why not?

I'm not a real sports fan. Mostly because I don't have time to watch them. As a kid, I played soccer but I only watch during the World Cup. The past 2 years, I've participated in Hypey's NCAA basketball pool. Sadly, not doing well in either year. Maybe I should pick teams based on their playing record rather than on how cute they look in their shorts. Eh?

2) If you could only use five words, ever, what would they be?

Ok, here you go.

Fuck - If you think about it its the perfect word. It can express shock, anger, desire, surprise..... etc, etc.
Yes & No - Perfect for answering most of life's questions.
Please & Thankyou - One should always be polite.

3) How big a place in your life does music have?

I listen to music everyday. Its plays a huge role in my life. I have a collection of 400 cds and I keep adding to it. Music gets me going in the morning and soothes me to sleep at night. Right now I'm obsessed with Jazz but I enjoy all kinds of music. Everything from Opera to Punk. It might surprise you to know that I own a Polka cd. :)

4) Zits: are you a popper or do you leave them alone?

Definitely a popper. My mother would be so proud of me.

5) You are a fantastic cook. What constitutes the perfect grilled cheese sammich?

Dragon's Awesome Grilled Ham & Cheese Sandwich

This simple sandwich can be made with any type of cheese. Gruyere is a rich and smooth type of Swiss cheese that is delicious with ham.

1 tablespoon mayonnaise
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan cheese
2 slices of sourdough bread
1 slice of smoked ham
1 slice Gruyere cheese
2 thin slices of tomato
6 fresh basil leaves
1 tablespoon butter

1. In small bowl combine mayonnaise and Parmesan cheese and mix well. Spread on one side of each piece of bread.

2. Make sandwiches with the coated bread by adding Gruyere cheese, ham, the tomato slices and basil.

3. Spread outside of sandwiches with the softened butter.

4. Grill sandwich on panini grill or griddle until toasted and crisp.



Now its your turn!

Here are the rules if you want to keep it going:
1. Leave me a comment saying, "Interview me."
2. I will respond by asking you five questions. I get to pick the questions.
3. You will update your weblog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.


Thursday, April 26, 2007


Would you rather ......

[Hyperion here. I am comandeering Dragon's post and reposting it. She did a great job, and I don't think the question has been answered right. Besides not believing a one of you, I want to know why you think that. Just saying one or the other is boring. If you really wouldn't want to know (and again, I call every one of you who said that liars....), why? If you'd want to know, why that too? This is a world-class question, folks: we can do better. - H]

Another thought provoking question from Me!

Would you rather......

know when/where/how you are going to die


let it be a complete surprise


Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Baby Got Back - Gilbert and Sullivan Style

Monkey Barn Mythos - The complete series

I have collected the various versions of the MONKEY BARN MYTHOS for you to enjoy. Originally I split the Barn into small groups; (some did better than others). The results are interesting, to say the least. Some day I may tell you what REALLY happened.

Part I (Team Discovery Channel; Sea Hag version)

Part II (Team Discovery Channel; Dragon version)

Part III (Team Tobias the River Midget; formerly of Team Discovery Channel)

Part IV (Team Alpha)

Part V (Team Deez Nuts)

Part VI (Team Light Loafers)

There you have it. I hope you enjoyed their efforts to tell you from whence Monkey Barn came

hee he heh eh heh hee

Monday, April 23, 2007

Love is a Battlefield! Part 20

Hello everyone! Sea Hag's back from her most recent (drunken) adventures with a pocket full of Xanax and a tattoo that says 'Larry' on her upper left thigh. So, Larry, wherever (and whoever) you are, know that I don't remember you now, but I'm sure at one point I found you so indescribably rad that I chose to commemorate your name forever upon my body. You know, come to think of it, maybe I was talking about 'Perfect Strangers' and got fixated on Cousin Larry whilst on my fourth bottle of butterscotch schnapps. Crap.

Anyway, last time I was here I addressed the issue of women dating men who are going through a divorce, and how that was pretty much one of the dumbest things you could do (besides getting yourself a tattoo of a name of a character on a cheesy '80s sitcom). But a few readers wondered what the female equivalent of Almost-Divorced Rebound Guy would be, and if those ladies would also be considered fruit from the Forbidden Dating Tree. So I shall devote this particular entry of Love is a Battlefield to that topic:

Today's lesson: On The Rebound Part 2

Almost-Divorced Rebound Ladies are awesome and men should do everything in their powers to date them and shower them with gifts.

I hope that answers everyone's question.

...What, you're still here? Oh, you wanted me to do a Love Is A Battlefield that wasn't dripping with self-serving advice? What are you people smoking?

Fine, fine, I'll be a bit more objective this time. You're so demanding.

Let's say there is a particular fine-ass lady you've had your eye on for quite some time, and one day you happen to learn that she is going through a divorce. "Huzzahs!" you cry....but wait, is running after Almost-Divorced Rebound Lady a good idea, or are you about to embark on a vacation to Regretsville? Weigh in these facts first:

1. Emotional Rollercoaster Deluxe
Like her male counterpart, a female divorcee will be in dire need of some Prozac during this transitional phase. Expect scattered crying storms, followed by moods in the upper bitter temperatures.

2. Is Looking For A Replacement Man
A lot of Almost-Divorced Rebound Ladies are hunting for Husband #2 before the ink is dry on their divorce decree, the top reasons for this being they need the money and/or a dad for their little brats. However, many women go to the opposite end of this spectrum and are...

3. Going Through The 'You Go, Girl' Phase
This includes such activities as losing weight, joining a book club, cutting/dyeing your hair, and going back to school. She can change the oil in her car and mow the grass and all those other things her husband used to do because, dude, she's every woman and doesn't need your sorry ass around.

So, there you have it, Almost-Divorced Rebound Lady in a nutshell. Go forth and conquer, but remember, you've been warned.


Would you rather ......

Would you rather....
be able to turn invisible whenever you want


be able to fly?


HP OOTP international trailer

Tracy Lynn's picture and motto

This week's picture and motto courtesy of Tracy Lynn:

"Real, Not Real- Sometimes They Just Wear You Down. Bastards."

Friday, April 20, 2007

And so do I !

I haven't had much to say around here in a while, so here's my love note to you all!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Monkey Barn Mythos (Part VI)

Just when you thought we were done, it pulls you back in....

The Monkey Barn Mythos is back, and this time we get Team Light Loafers, which consisted of Tracy, Lost Goddess, 'Chelle and Bear.

Once again I can't get a straight answer from them as to who actually did the work (other than Bear insisting it was all him), but I will let them fight it out. I present the


Long ago, in Kenya, there lived a little boy. He lived in the vast plains of the countryside, with few friends and no electricity. It was a very spartan life for the boy.

Fortunately, he had a very vivid imagination.

He imagined himself some playmates- five monkey friends that he could play with in the barn on his parents farm, and he named them Koz, ScapeDragon, Sea Hag, Bear and Dominique.

He made his monkey friends smart, he made them irreverent, and he gave them the ability to think for themselves. And the six of them told stories and played games all day and into the night.

As the boy got older, so did his friends. And then the day came when he awoke with a screaming headache.

The pain was incredible, as if his brain might actually explode out of his head. The suffering went on for hours, until finally, one by one, his formerly imaginary friends burst from his forehead.

He had imagined them so vividly for so long that they had become real.

Fortunately, one of the monkeys knew first aid, and so patched up the kid, toot sweet. But that was only the beginning of the kid's problems.

Go Hokies!

Hey, it's Tobias here. I haven't posted in a little bit, but I wanted to let you know where I was.

I've been touring the East Coast with my band (more on that another time). Anyway, two weeks ago we played at VaTech (which is what everyone there calls Virginia Tech), and I loved it. The Hokies have been my favorite team since Michael Vick was there (how can you not love the word Hokie?), and of course when everything happened we were in total shock.

At the time of everything we were up in Baltimore, and tried to get back to see if we could help, but of course it has been total chaos there in Blacksburg, and the last thing anyone needs is a river midget running around.

Anyway I wrote Hyperion and asked if the picture/motto could be something supporting the Hokies. Koz made a picture a while back, and I played around with that and got the picture below. (Don't hate on my awful editing skillz; I have none.)

My motto suggestion is the one they have on their website: "Invent the future." Hope that works for you all (and Hyperion).

Last I wanted to pass along a link one of the VaTech students emailed me. I AM NOT making any comments no it whatsoever--so not smart enough to do that, but it's almost incredible how much information is on there, and how quickly it changes in real time. You can almost follow the story just from this page.

Anyway, it's Seung-hui Cho's Wikipedia Page. (About him, not by him). Worth taking a look.

Catch you soon, peeps, and go Hokies!

Tobias the River Midget

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

My Private Part Died Today!

An old man, Mr. Goldstein, was living the last of his life in a nursing home. One day he appeared to be very sad and depressed. Nurse Tracy asked if there was anything wrong.

"Yes, Nurse Tracy," said Mr. Goldstein, "My Private Part died today, and I am very sad."

Knowing her patients were forgetful and sometimes a little crazy, she replied, "Oh, I'm so sorry, Mr. Goldstein, please accept my condolences.

The following day, Mr. Goldstein was walking down the hall with his Private Part hanging out his pajamas, when he met Nurse Tracy. "Mr. Goldstein," she said, "You shouldn't be walking down the hall like that. Please put your Private Part back inside your pajamas."

"But, Nurse Tracy," replied Mr. Goldstein, " I told you yesterday that my Private Part died."

"Yes, you did tell me that, but why is it hanging out of your pajamas?"

"Well, he replied, "Today's the viewing."

Friday, April 13, 2007

A star is born

I wish I knew what she was singing. What a little star.


Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Monkey Barn Mythos - Part V

We come to the next installment of the Monkey Barn Mythos, and there is some question as to this one's authenticity. Team Deez Nutz was responsible for this, and they consisted of Lady Jane Scarlett, Biff Spiffy, Koz and Rennratt.

When the final product was turned in, it seemed to have been done so by just one person. (Except for a picture, which was rejected for final publication, because it violated the tastes and standards the Barn has, such as they are.) Always a fan of giving credit where it was due, I asked the person who turned in the final product if he/she would like to be solely credited, and he/she told me that he/she would prefer if I credited everyone but him/her, as she was less than thrilled with the final product.


I'll let them sort it out in the comments. For now, here is the


Stimpy was always the stupid one, or so I used to think. No half-witted cat would eat litter even if it IS Gritty Kitty. So it was only a matter of time before the allure of the shiny red button captured Stimpy’s imagination. I tried to stop him, I promise. I even wore that stupid hat, and even took him to outer space. But to no avail.

Doesn’t that idiot cat almost look gleeful in those last moments, before he caused the utter destruction of the universe? If only Stimpy had not pushed the red button, I would have never appreciated his mad genius. In those first moments after the button was pushed we were nothing but waves. We were…transmissions in need of a home.

The first days AB (after button), we tried to find a suitable home for our demented thoughts. Hauntings, possessions, and mean tricks during Ouija board parties only sealed our fate. Were we forever doomed? We had one last resort. Canada.

There we found a vessel worthy of our strange brand of existentialism and shared our love of powdered toast with a side of beef jerky.

He was…brilliant. But He needed to loosen up a bit. He was a bit too much like Orson Welles but not enough like Kevin Smith. We found Him here, at this boring, stressed out, type A kind of office.

It’s kind of quaint in a Ted Kaczynski sort of way. Clearly, the Man needed some fun. So, we started hanging out and talking to Him. And He started talking back, even though He was the only one to see us at first. But then our ideas became His and He started to laugh a bit and think like us a bit more. One time I found Him in his purple boxer briefs singing “happy happy joy joy”. After we had seen that Powdered Toast Man had started his own blog, He knew that there was an audience for our zany wackiness.

Rogue Ninja

Rogue Ninja
You scored 8 Honor, 4 Justice, 5 Adventure, and 7 Individuality!
You are as quiet as the wind, deadly as a viper and you follow no master. You are a Rogue Ninja. Let no one say you are without honor, lest they meet a quiet and questionable end.

Dress as you like and keep your knives close. You'll do just fine

My test tracked 4 variables How you compared to other people your age and gender:

free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 99% on Ninjinuity

free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 99% on Knightlyness

free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 99% on Cowboiosity

free online datingfree online dating
You scored higher than 99% on Piratical Bent
Link: The Cowboy-Ninja-Pirate-Knight Test written by fluffy71 on OkCupid Free Online Dating, home of the The Dating Persona Test

Monday, April 09, 2007

Monkey Barn Mythos - Team Alpha

The next installment of the Monkey Barn Mythos comes from Team Alpha which was Elvis, Schrondinger and Dominque. They toiled for many days and a host of farm animals and small children were hurt in the process and this is what they come up with.

Monkey Barn Mythos - Part 4

The Monkey Barn Mythos was born before Man, before Dinasour, even before George Burns. As the molten crust of the planet Earth was solidifying, a small website managed to put forth a single Monkey grunt. It was the beginning of the Barn, and this grunt was thereafter known in the Monkey Barn Mythos as "The Monkey Grunt Heard the World Over."

"Eeee...oooohhhh" echoed through the skies, and it was repeated without meaning and without comprehension. Only years later after extensive analysis and anal probing would the true meaning behind the Monkey Barn grunt be understood.

The Barn was not heard from again until a small child happened upon a horrifying creature in a small enclave in rural France, 1762. This child was frozen in fear at the sight of the gelling mass of fluid that came to be known as Hyperion. Not man, not machine, not Manimal...Hyperion was an enigma to this small town. He came to live with the child and her parents as one of their own, but was never really respected, never really accepted, and never really allowed to bake pies. And a household with no pie-baking is not a true household at all.

Once after telling him he would never make a pie again, Hyperion's adoptive father told him the story of the "Monkey Grunt Heard the World Over. " As if hearing a call from his own sphincter, Hyperion recognized the grunt as his CALL. He would find this rumored website, find this home, and begin a family of his own. And bake pies.

So Hyperion at the very mature age of 6 set off to find where he belonged. The Monkey Barn.

To prepare for the journey, young Hyperion headed to the local jerkeysmith with the intention to collect some Beef Jerkey. The jerkeysmith was crippled and strange. Hyperion asked him for some beef jerkey, but the jerkeysmith instead offered young Hyperion one of three magical gifts:
(1) Beef Jerkey
(2) Naked Photos
(3) The Answer To Any Question
Hyperion was strongly tempted by the first two options, but he could not resist choice number three. Could the jerkeysmith lead Hyperion to his destiny? The call of the Monkey Barn grew louder.

Smithy told Hyperion, “Kid, I like you. You’ve got spunk; a love of the jerky; a need to make pie; and a thirst to know. You remind me of me but I choose the Jerky. I was hoping to make you my apprentice but you’ve chosen a different path. Follow me and I’ll introduce you to who can help you.”

“Who is that,” inquired young Hyperion walking around the counter and following Smithy into the back room which smelled like heaven with all the jerky curing. Smithy remained silent, ignoring Hyperion’s questions and inquisitive looks unlike he knocked on the back door of his own shop to the tune of “Yes we have no bananas.” Hyperion wondered what kind of cruel joke Smithy was playing on him by knocking the banana song until the door was yanked open by a squat, dirty creature who crankily bellowed, “This better be good, Smithy. Wait, that’s no wench!”

“Shut it, Tobias!” boomed Smithy with a sneer.

From some where in the dark behind the midget, a deep voice boomed – “Let him in Tobby. This is the one we’re here for.” The voice made Smithy and short Tobby cringe.

“Yes, Carny. He came. Just like you said.”

"It's you!" Hyperion exhaled.

"Yes." Tobias sighed.

They stood entranced for moments, neither able to move. Fear overwhelmed them.

At last, Tobias ran to Hyperion, and jumped into his arms.

That night, Hyperion slept in the bed of Tobias, his true solemate, finally fulfilled at last. They both smelled of jerky and pie, content to know that the end of their quest lay within sight. In the darkness of night, they made the Monkey Grunt Heard The World Over ... together.

The next morning, they set out to find the elusive Barn wherein they could Monkey forevermore.

They encountered many strange creatures along the way, many sages with advice. But the most important of these was a small rock. Yes, Rocks can be sages.

As Hyperion queried direction of the rock, Tobias realized that the rhyming rock had something very important he was saying...

New Photo and Motto - LJS

It's Lady Jane Scarelett's turn to pick this week's photo and motto. What a fine choice she made.

"Dude means nice guy. Dude means a regular sort of person."

Saturday, April 07, 2007

The Amazing Jesus

And so you don't think I'm playing Easter favorites, I present to you....


Tobias the Easter Midget

The Easter Bunny Hates You

As I am still basking in the post Mythos glow (and expectantly waiting for offers of sex from the bitches), I thought I'd grace the Barn with my presence twice in one week.

If this were a trailer to a horror movie, I'd be excited. As it is, let's just find out what the Easter Bunny does the other 364 days of the year:

That's right: kick ass

Tobias theRiver Midget

Friday, April 06, 2007

Team Discovery Channel!

When I first concocted the Monkey Barn Mythos, I split the Barn up into four groups, gave them three weeks and asked them to come up with a story that explained how Monkey Barn got started. Team Discovery Channel consisted of Sea Hag, Dragon and Tobias the River Midget. They chose to do their stories separately but connected, and I decided to run them over several days instead of all at once. (Mostly for length, but also because I thought they were very good and wanted them showcased.)

In case you missed them, here is Team Discovery Channel's Mythos:

Sea Hag (Part I)

Dragon (Part II)

Tobias (Part III)

Next week we will get to the other groups and see what they came up with.


I got an energy drink this morning, only to discover the cap was talking to me!

I think when beverages ask you questions (especially those high in B-12 Vitamins) you should answer, and so in the spirit of Dragon's questions, I ask you this:

If a stranger gave you $500 and asked you to donate it to charity, would you?

Assume that no one would know whether you had or not, not even the stranger. Be honest: would you? If so, what charity? If not, would that bother you?

(All credit to Dragon for inspiring this post)

Monkey Barn Mythos (Part III)

First there was nothing.

Then God said, “Let there be Tobias the River Midget.”

And God saw what wondrous creature Tobias was, and she was pleased.

Oh, and somewhere in there was a Barn. A barn full of monkeys, a “Monkey Barn,” if you will.

That was my first draft I sent to Hyperion. That’s all I pretty much needed to say about the “so called “ “Monkey Barn Mythos,” and for the record, I wasn’t asked to detail my involvement with said Monkeys, said Mythos, or said Marn. (Which is how you would say “Barn” if you had a reverse-cold.)

I just naturally figured the readers would want to know the most important and interesting parts. That’s pretty much how I deal with the ladies: the most important and interesting parts. (And when I say “parts” I mean what is inside their pants. And when I say “pants” I’m also allowing for the possibility of a dress or skirt of some kind. Actually, I prefer my women this way, but I gotz no problems with the NOW gang, as long as those pants aren’t covering up six weeks worth of fur. Nasty. I mean, we all know that the more “Feminist” a woman is in public, the more willing she is to make up for it behind closed doors, if you know what I mean, and if you don’t know what I mean, good luck with that whole “life time of celibacy” thing.)

Anyscoots, I sent my Mythos thingy to Hyperion and he sent back this email.


Try again, numbnuts.


Further inquiries yielded suggestions that I pattern my story after the rest of my group, Sea Hag and Dragon. Originally we were all supposed to do our story together, but both chicks said we should do it as individual story segments. (I had to look the word “segment” up. Meant nothing like what I thought.)

I think the real reason they didn’t want to work directly with me is they were scrrrd they’d be overcome by my powerful animal magnetism, but hey: no use crying over dry panties.

So anyway, Anchoring Team Discovery Channel’s soon-to-be award-winning story, here is my “segment” of how I joined the Institute, and Monkey Barn.


I was down at the docks running my usual array of games: Three Card Monte, Craps, Marbles and the most dangerous of all: Jacks. A fellow can get hisself killed playing Jacks. Them Catholic girls are mean, and you don’t even want to imagine what can be hidden in the folds of a plaid jumper.

Anyscoots, I was running the games for a big time dealer, name of Marcellus Hapkido. No one called him that, though. They just called him “The Architect,” because if there was crime down by the waterfront, Marcellus had designed it. That man had more plans for mayhem than the Democrat Party.

Well, maybe I get carried away (no one’s that bad), but you know what I mean: Marcellus was heavy, man.

Marcellus had me running the games ‘cause I was smarter than the others. Well, that’s not entirely true. I mean, I was smarter than the others, but also, on account of being a River Midget, and not of, uh, large stature, Marcellus knew I could get along with everyone, wouldn’t be taken for a threat.

And….well, there were my parents.

Pa had a gambling jones he just couldn’t control, and got into Marcellus for some major scratch. I was working in order to pay off the debt, or at least keep Pa’s fingers from permanent mangle.

Well, one day I’m at the docks looking over my games when this really weird ship comes pulling into port. It was like nothing I ever saw: straight out of history, yo. This ship was like some sort of Spanish Armada shit; for realz. It was made all of wood and had cannons coming out the sides!

I know!

Everyone stops what they’re doing and looks at this ship. I mean, people who live and work down by the docks are jaded, you know, and nothing surprises them. Aliens could invade and we’d just ask if they wanted to roll a hard eight. But this ship…..

It just sits there in the harbor for like 30 minutes, doing nothing. Finally a gang-plank (at least, that’s what I think you call it) came sailing over the side and connected to the dock. A huuuuuuge man, even bigger than Marcellus, comes walking down. Behind him were two of the hottest women this side of a Romanian Brothel.

The dude had a long flowing read beard and a huge sword at his side, and was dressed colorful enough to hurt your eyes. The women were wearing…not much, but just enough to cover what you might pray to that big pink pixie in the sky they were not, you know what I mean?

By this time Marcellus had apparently seen all the bidness of the docks stop and came out to see why he wasn’t making any money. The crowd parted to let him through, and he stood there, facing the giant. Marcellus is a big man, but next to the stranger he looked almost normal.

For my part I went around quietly cutting purses and liberating wallets. After all, a crowd like this was an opportunity, and an opportunity missed brought you Marcellus’s foot up yo ass.

The stranger and Marcellus eye each other like two rival dogs in a junk-yard. Then without a word they moved to each other and embraced in a big ol’ hug. All around people gasped, maybe a little disappointed: we thought they was going to fight. The only thing the people of the docks liked better than a game was a fight.

After they done hugging the stranger says to Marcellus, is he ready?” I thought he might have been looking my way.

“Ready as he’ll ever be. I had to pretend to want to hurt his folks to get him to stick around where I could keep an eye on him, but he’s ready.”

By now even I knew they were talking ‘bout me, and my natural curiosity (which has been the cause of and solution to more of my problems than anything in life) got the better of me. I crept forward, continuing to cut purses by more by rote than anything, until I was at the front of the crowd.

The giant looked down at me and smiled. “Tobias, your destiny is with me. Let’s go, dude.”

I looked up at that huge ship and sort of gulped, but then curiosity got the better of me. I wonder what was in their cargo holds?

I wanted to say goodbye to my folks, but that wasn’t the River Midget way. We traveled with everything we owned (often having to flee at a moment’s notice), and with all my wallets and purses soon to be missing, it might be a good time at that to get away. As I walked up the gangplank I saw the flag for the first time. It was black with skull and cross bones. There was something just a little “off about the skull. It was too small to be human, but looked very much like a human. It was almost like a…..

“Welcome to the Barn” one of the women called out to me. “It’s sort of like the Ark, but with slightly less incest.”

I was sure I would love it here.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

For those who are coping w/ the Heroes hiatus & those not yet addicted to it - the preview - starts again 23 April

The Monkey Barn Mythos Project (Part II)

We continue on with the Monkey Barn Mythos project, looking deep into the past to see just where this crazy place came from.

In Part I Sea Hag told of her life before Monkey Barn and how she came to join. Now in Part II Dragon takes up several years after Sea Hag left off, on a remote island in the murky deep.....


The sun was setting, the sky ablaze in orange and yellow as I watched a small boat approach the shore. The two men rowing grunted loudly with each turn of their oars. The waters had turned rough quickly and it was making my clan nervous.

Any sort of change made my clan nervous.

There were two others in the boat, one a massive man with a long beard and dressed completely in purple. He held onto his hat with one hand and steadied himself with the other. I found it curious that it was more important to him not to lose his hat than risk falling into the water. The thought made me smile.

He was definitely not an ordinary man.

His companion was equally intriguing. She was dressed in black with a red scarf across her forehead holding back her long dark hair. She reminded me of a…of a pirate.

We Gypsies are used to dealing with pirates.

We Gypsies don’t like pirates.

She held onto the boat with both hands while she barked orders at the rowers, clearly annoyed with their progress. Stunning and menacing at the same time, she was definitely a pirate.

I turned back to look at the giant man. He was staring at me, smiling. His eyes seemed to burn right through me and I couldn’t look away.

“What do you think they want?” My father asked, shaking me out of my spell.

“I don’t know, Papa. But we will welcome them like we welcome all strangers. Isn’t that what you taught me?” I smiled to take the sting of my words away, and we made our way to the beach to join the rest our clan by the fire.

The music was already playing and the men of our clan sang songs to the Children of Adventure from long ago. Wine and food flowed around us and everyone enjoyed the warmth of the fire’s glow. It is moments like these that make me thankful to be Gypsy. Life was not easy and our days are a struggle, but come the night, we rejoice in what we have: each other.

“Did you see the strangers?” Celia asked me as I approached the fire. “I bet it’s another challenger for you.”

Celia wrapped her arm around me. “Goodness, you’re shivering. Come sit by me near the fire. I’ll get you some broth.”

“Yes, I am a little cold.” I said, thankful for the excuse. “We should prepare to welcome the strangers. They must certainly be cold and hungry.”

“You must be more cautious, daughter.” My father warned. “I have a bad feeling.”

“They are coming to challenge your daughter to a game of Paseo Dos. Why else would they come here?” Celia said as she handed me a bowl of broth.

“Let them come, I will best them like I did the others.” I said, smiling at my father.

“Your pride will get you in trouble, daughter. You must….”

Papa didn’t finish his sentence because his attention became focused on the group of strangers approaching the fire. I turned to greet our guests. The tall one was an imposing figure. He was at least 7 feet tall with a sturdy body to match his height. He walked with a large walking stick but his movements were determined and strong. There was nothing weak about him. I had never seen eyes like his before. They were a cool blue-grey that it reminded me of the color of the sea during a storm. I felt heat on my cheeks and I told myself it must be from the fire.

A woman can convince herself of anything if she really wants to.

His companion the woman pirate walked two steps behind him, surveying the surroundings. The servants walked four steps behind her with their hands on their swords, ready for anything.

The stranger walked right up to me and took off his hat, revealing a shaved head. “My name is Hyperion. This is my companion, Sea Hag. She is the captain of my vessel.” He pointed to the ship out in the water.

“I have come a long way to meet you, dear lady.” He said, bowing his large head. “I wish to play a game of Paseo Dos with you.”

“I will only play if you have something of value to wager, sir.” I said, daring him. He smiled, clearly amused with me.

“I will wager enough money to sustain your clan for an entire year.” He said as he removed the rings from his fingers and held them out to me in his massive hand. They were beautiful jeweled rings, certain to bring us enough money to sustain us for many years.

“You are very generous, sir.” I said, trying to appear unmoved. “I can not offer as much but I will wager my most prized possession: my jade dragon.”

I removed the dragon from my bag and placed it front of me. “I won the dragon from a prince who had also traveled a long way to try and best me at the game of Paseo Dos.” I paused dramatically. “The Prince lost so easily that I should have asked him to wager his crown.” The crowd roared, even the pirate woman.

“I will accept the wager but I want more.” His eyes narrowed and seemed to see right through me. I was blushing but I remained composed and my eyes locked with his.

“I have nothing more to offer you.” I said, not taking my eyes off him.

“But you do, little one. I want you. I want you to come with me and be part of my Council.” He said, ignoring the gasps around him.

“No, daughter, don’t make this wager.” My father pleaded, pulling me aside.

“Father, I am the best player of this game. I can beat him. Think of what it will mean for us. We will not have to worry about money for a long time. I must do this.”

My father knew better than to argue with me when I was set in my way.

“I accept your wager, sir. Shall we begin?” I said, motioning him to sit down by the fire.

We had played several rounds, each of us taking turns winning. Hyperion knew how to play the game better than anyone else I had encountered. I loved the challenge and I played my best. In the final round, I knew I had won. It would be impossible for me to lose. I looked at my father, his pride in me showing on his face. I turned to my opponent and smiled.

“Well, can you beat this?” I asked as I showed him my cards. The crowd applauded, certain that I was the victor.

“You are very good at this game, little one. This is why I’ve come to here to find you,” He said, his eyes never leaving mine. A sly smile curled his lips. “But, there is something you should know about me.”

“Yes, what is that?” I said, sure of myself.

“I invented Paseo Dos.” My eyes widened as he laughed and slowly showed me his hand.
He had won. I heard gasps all around me. I heard my father’s cries. I heard Sea Hag laughing at Hyperion’s side.

“You will not take my daughter! Take the jade dragon and leave us alone!” My father cried, his voice shattering me out of my haze.

“Papa, I chose this fate for myself. I will not break my word.” I said as I held my father’s hands. “Papa, I will be alright. You have taught me well. I will be safe.”

“Don’t worry old man. I will take great care with her.” Hyperion said as he looked into my father’s eyes, trying to assuage the old man’s fears. I appreciated his kindness towards my father.

As Hyperion’s guards rowed us back to Sea Hag’s ship, I took a final look back towards my home. My father stood on the shore; crying. Would I ever be back? I turned to my captor, his hand holding onto his hat. His eyes were studying me.

“Don’t you want to know my name?” I asked

“It doesn’t matter to me. From now I will call you Dragon. You are mine and I expect your allegiance.” He said.

Sea Hag laughed out loud as she reached her hand to stroke my cheek. “Dragon. I like it. Will you breathe fire for us, little one? I’m feeling a bit chilly,” she said as she snuggled up against Hyperion. They were both laughing now. I ignored them and turned to look back at my home. I could still see my father on the shore waving to me. I waved back.

I wandered the ship freely. Where was I going to escape? My only escape would have been death in the frigid water and I was much too curious about my future to even contemplate such a dire fate. I had always believed in fate. Fate is a prankster. You never know what sort of trick he’ll pull on you.

I saw Sea Hag at the helm of the ship, staring into the night and dark waters. Above her was a banner I had never seen before. She still had that faint smile of someone who’s in on the joke. I climbed up to join her.

“What is the Hyperion Nation?” I asked.

“We are and now you are part if it as well,” she said, smiling broadly.

“What if I refuse to be a part of this…this Hyperion Nation?” I asked willfully. She said nothing but slowly motioned her hand across her neck. I got the point. I stood there with her for some time, staring out into the waters.

“Where are we going?” I asked.

“We are searching,” she said, without turning her gaze from the water.

“Searching for what?”

“Others.”, she said as she turned to face me again. “Hello Carny. Are you here to take Dragon to Hyperion?”

I turned around to find a man dressed in a long dark cloak. I couldn’t quite make out his features but his presence commanded respect. He motioned me to follow him. I hesitated.

“You better do as you’re told, Dragon. Don't get yourself killed for the sake of pride.” Sea Hag said, remembering Hyperion’s words to her. “Don’t worry, honey, it will be worth it.”

I turned and followed Carny down the stairs to Hyperion’s cabin. I wasn’t scared, No, I was excited. I couldn’t wait to see what fate had in store for me now.

“Hey, Dragon” Sea Hag called out. I turned back to face her.

“Welcome to the Monkey Barn.”

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Post Secret Pick of the Week- Week 15

Me Too.
Karma's a Bitch and So Are We.

I Would to If It Could Make Me Happy

Another installment of 'Would You Rather....'

Would you rather....

Have sex with

George W. Bush
or Boy George

Now keep in mind the question applies to men and women. Tough choice, huh?



I'm gonna kick his ask....

This little girl is adorable. This is her response to what she's going to do if a monster comes to get her. I love the fact that she's not quite sure why her Mommy's laughing at her.


Signs of intelligent life in Space...

I pulled up Yahoo! and the 1st thing I see is this - "New clue for life on Mars
A satellite may have found entrances to seven massive Martian caves."
It is my humble opinion that the 1st clue to life on other planets is that they have yet to contact us.

Monday, April 02, 2007

The Monkey Barn Mythos Project (Part 1)

People, we have a total treat for you, starting today. A few weeks ago I emailed the Monkey Barn gang and asked them to come up with a Monkey Barn Mythos. In other words, how on Earth did the Barn come to exist, and how did these fine people come to exist in it. What is the Why a Barn, and not, say, a palace, underground bunker, or tour bus? And why oh why a Monkey?

Over the next few days we are going to get installments of The Monkey Barn Mythos. Today's installment comes from Sea Hag. I hope you enjoy.


It was a dark and stormy night.

Which was why I was in a bar.

True, a pirate's life is exactly not known for its luxuries, and is so fraught with peril from the wicked seas and the reach of Her Majesty's cannon that any sensible woman will jump at the chance for a proper pint and a warm bed for the night. And so, here I was at my favorite hideout The World's End waiting for much milder weather to cradle the Caribbean again.

I was not the only rogue on hand that night; the bar was crowded and cheerful, and the liquor flowed sweet and golden while the blind piano player churned out gaudy drinking songs. Rowdy games of Flip and Trump Card buzzed at the periphery of the room, and deft prostitutes orbited the winners, sliding sticky fingers into pockets. Fights broke out, hearts were broken, teeth and fingers were lost, and by my twelfth drink of the night I was humming tunelessly and ready for sleep.

My room was pitch black. Inky storm clouds had blotted out any sliver of moonlight that might have found a way through the soot-streaked window, so when I finally managed to stumble upstairs and unlock the stout door to my sleeping chamber I stood crookedly, waiting for my eyes to adjust.

In the darkness, my other senses became sharper. And that's when I smelled something oddly familiar.

It was the heady smell of rain and moss, honey and musk, and, ever so faintly, cardamom and orange peel. I hadn't encountered it in a long time, not since my first successful raiding party over a dozen years ago. It was the scent of a special tea from a small colony in the Americas, and only one person in the entire world made this particular blend. He had been my first captive, and my first love. I whispered his secret bed-name into the blackness.

I woke up sometime later in chains with a throbbing headache.

I was on a ship, below decks with about thirty or so captives. Most were awake and talked anxiously amongst themselves, while others fought seasickness or painful concussions quietly. I nodded to my neighbor, a small, savory river midget with a dislocated shoulder. He grunted in acknowledgement while his eyes flicked over the corners of the room, looking for escape. Unless he wanted a quick trip to a wide, briny grave, his search was going to be quite fruitless as we were obviously far out to sea. The best plan was to reserve my energy for what awaited us, and with that in mind and the lull of the familiar ocean beneath me, I closed my eyes and slept.

Several days later, we approached land, and we captives were trotted out onto the bleached sand of a tiny island. A swarthy buccaneer looked us over, then lead us to a dungeon inside a large pink castle that overlooked the marina. That night, the guard came and selected a lithe blond from the group, then an hour later a sobbing, stooped old man, then an hour after that a buxom redhead.

It was sunrise when they came for me.

I was lead down a pink marble hall to a huge domed chamber lined with piles of plunder: treasure chests, gems, tapestries, and fine silverwork. In the middle of this room, seated on a pile of colorful woven carpets and silk pillows was my old lover. He was shaved bald, his powerful arms banded with heavy golden bracelets, his beard was long and luxurious, fanning out over a powerful, muscular chest. I was overcome by the odd feeling that I knew him intimately and yet not at all; I remembered that he favored sweet mangoes and cantaloupes, could play the harp and was a terrible swimmer, and yet I had no idea how he came to be here upon this island with scores of guards and ships and fortunes at his disposal. What had happened to the sweet, blue-eyed tea seller I left ashore years and years ago?

He leaned back on one elbow, to take in my disheveled body. "Well," he said, thumbing a huge carnelian ring on his left hand.

"Well, indeed."

"I trust my men treated you gently."

I scowled, shaking my manacled hands at him. "You know exactly how I was treated. Are you going to let me know what is going on here?"

He chuckled. "You were always so impatient."

I felt my scalp crawl with anger, and I clenched my fists. The guards grabbed me as I started to leap towards him and shoved me down on my knees at his feet, where I noticed at he had silver and gold rings on each of his toes. He laughed again, and bent to take my chin in one huge palm.

"I missed you."

I flinched back, but his strong fingers held my jaw still. "I will tell you what I want from you, but you must behave. Understand?"

I could feel my molars grind together in frustration, but I kept my tongue still.

"I've been busy since you left me, my dear Sea Hag. I've been building my empire. And what I want from you is your allegiance."

I remained silent.

"You will be rewarded graciously, of course, for your efforts."

"What efforts might those be?"

"I will return you to your ship, and you will continue doing your usual pillaging and looting. I will require a percent of it for my own, of course. I also want you to take captives for me and fly the banner of The Hyperion Nation."

"Who is Hyperion?"

"Me, of course."

"But your name is-"

"I stopped going by that a long time ago, sweet one, and it would do you good to forget it. I also have need for you as part of my council."

"Now I know you're not serious."

"But I am. You have a certain...stubbornness that I admire."

"What if I refuse?"

He motioned to one of the guards, and he pulled a vicious two-handed long sword from his back. "You meet your maker, I'm afraid. But please, I need you. Don't get yourself killed for the sake of pride."

I sighed. "I certainly never thought I'd meet you again like this."

He laughed, and pulled me to my feet. The guards removed my shackles, and Hyperion held me close to his chest, and once again I could smell that faint, sweet, musky scent of tea on his skin. I surprised myself by hugging him back. "I missed you, too."

"Welcome to the Monkey Barn," he said.

The Tree

There was a mix-up in this week's picture and motto, so I came up with it myself.

Oh to be free of myself,
With nothing left to remember,
To have my heart as bare
As a tree in December;

Resting, as a tree rests
After its leaves are gone,
Waiting no more for a rain at night
Nor for the red at dawn;

- Sara Teasdale, The Tree

(click for full glorious size)