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Neal Stephenson Responds With Wit and Humor

Roblimo posted about 10 years ago | from the this-guy-ought-to-turn-pro dept.

684

There is nothing better than a Slashdot interview with someone who not only reads and understands Slashdot but can out-troll the trolls. Admittedly, the questions you asked Neal Stephenson were great in their own right, but his answers... Wow! let's just say that this guy shows how it's done. 1) right to keep and bear code - by arashiakari

Do you think that hacking tools should be protected (in the United States) under the second amendment?


Neal:

Such is the intensity of issues like this that I can't tell whether this is a troll. I'm going to assume it's not, and answer the question seriously.

I'm no constitutional scholar but I'm pretty sure that the Founding Fathers were thinking of flintlocks, not perl scripts, when they wrote the Second Amendment. Now you can dispute that and say "No, anything that enables citizens to defend themselves against an oppressive government is covered by the Second Amendment." There might be something to such an argument. But pragmatically, the question is whether you can get nine (or at least five) non-hacker Supreme Court Justices to see it that way. I suspect the answer is no. It's just too easy for them to say "it is not a weapon." To me it seems a lot easier simply to invoke the First Amendment.

Also, remember that there might be unwanted side effects to classifying code as weapons. In the U.S., where the right to bear certain weapons is written into the Constitution, it might seem like a clever way to secure access to such code. But authorities in other countries might say "look, even the U.S. Government defines this string of bits as a weapon---so we are going to outlaw it."

It's difficult to form an intelligent opinion on issues like this without doing a lot of work. One has to learn a lot about the issues and then think about them pretty hard. I haven't really done so, and so I'm inclined to trust people who have, like Matt Blaze. At crypto.com he has posted some interesting material that is germane to this topic.

See http://www.crypto.com/masterkey.html

and especially

http://www.crypto.com/hobbs.html

To make a long argument short, what I have learned from Matt's writings on the topic is that (1) it's not a new issue, (2) it's a First Amendment issue, and (3) it's best in the long run, for all concerned, if vulnerabilities are exposed in public.

2) The lack of respect... - by MosesJones

Science Fiction is normally relegated to the specialist publications rather than having reviews in the main stream press. Seen as "fringe" and a bit sad its seldom reviewed with anything more than condescension by the "quality" press.

Does it bother you that people like Jeffery Archer or Jackie Collins seem to get more respect for their writing than you ?


Neal:

OUCH!

(removes mirrorshades, wipes tears, blows nose, composes self)

Let me just come at this one from sort of a big picture point of view.

(the sound of a million Slashdot readers hitting the "back" button...)

First of all, I don't think that the condescending "quality" press look too kindly on Jackie Collins and Jeffrey Archer. So I disagree with the premise of the last sentence of this question and I'm not going to address it. Instead I'm going to answer what I think MosesJones is really getting at, which is why SF and other genre and popular writers don't seem to get a lot of respect from the literary world.

To set it up, a brief anecdote: a while back, I went to a writers' conference. I was making chitchat with another writer, a critically acclaimed literary novelist who taught at a university. She had never heard of me. After we'd exchanged a bit of of small talk, she asked me "And where do you teach?" just as naturally as one Slashdotter would ask another "And which distro do you use?"

I was taken aback. "I don't teach anywhere," I said.

Her turn to be taken aback. "Then what do you do?"

"I'm...a writer," I said. Which admittedly was a stupid thing to say, since she already knew that.

"Yes, but what do you do?"

I couldn't think of how to answer the question---I'd already answered it!

"You can't make a living out of being a writer, so how do you make money?" she tried.

"From...being a writer," I stammered.

At this point she finally got it, and her whole affect changed. She wasn't snobbish about it. But it was obvious that, in her mind, the sort of writer who actually made a living from it was an entirely different creature from the sort she generally associated with.

And once I got over the excruciating awkwardness of this conversation, I began to think she was right in thinking so. One way to classify artists is by to whom they are accountable.

The great artists of the Italian Renaissance were accountable to wealthy entities who became their patrons or gave them commissions. In many cases there was no other way to arrange it. There is only one Sistine Chapel. Not just anyone could walk in and start daubing paint on the ceiling. Someone had to be the gatekeeper---to hire an artist and give him a set of more or less restrictive limits within which he was allowed to be creative. So the artist was, in the end, accountable to the Church. The Church's goal was to build a magnificent structure that would stand there forever and provide inspiration to the Christians who walked into it, and they had to make sure that Michelangelo would carry out his work accordingly.

Similar arrangements were made by writers. After Dante was banished from Florence he found a patron in the Prince of Verona, for example. And if you look at many old books of the Baroque period you find the opening pages filled with florid expressions of gratitude from the authors to their patrons. It's the same as in a modern book when it says "this work was supported by a grant from the XYZ Foundation."

Nowadays we have different ways of supporting artists. Some painters, for example, make a living selling their work to wealthy collectors. In other cases, musicians or artists will find appointments at universities or other cultural institutions. But in both such cases there is a kind of accountability at work.

A wealthy art collector who pays a lot of money for a painting does not like to see his money evaporate. He wants to feel some confidence that if he or an heir decides to sell the painting later, they'll be able to get an amount of money that is at least in the same ballpark. But that price is going to be set by the market---it depends on the perceived value of the painting in the art world. And that in turn is a function of how the artist is esteemed by critics and by other collectors. So art criticism does two things at once: it's culture, but it's also economics.

There is also a kind of accountability in the case of, say, a composer who has a faculty job at a university. The trustees of the university have got a fiduciary responsibility not to throw away money. It's not the same as hiring a laborer in factory, whose output can be easily reduced to dollars and cents. Rather, the trustees have to justify the composer's salary by pointing to intangibles. And one of those intangibles is the degree of respect accorded that composer by critics, musicians, and other experts in the field: how often his works are performed by symphony orchestras, for example.

Accountability in the writing profession has been bifurcated for many centuries. I already mentioned that Dante and other writers were supported by patrons at least as far back as the Renaissance. But I doubt that Beowulf was written on commission. Probably there was a collection of legends and tales that had been passed along in an oral tradition---which is just a fancy way of saying that lots of people liked those stories and wanted to hear them told. And at some point perhaps there was an especially well-liked storyteller who pulled a few such tales together and fashioned them into the what we now know as Beowulf. Maybe there was a king or other wealthy patron who then caused the tale to be written down by a scribe. But I doubt it was created at the behest of a king. It was created at the behest of lots and lots of intoxicated Frisians sitting around the fire wanting to hear a yarn. And there was no grand purpose behind its creation, as there was with the painting of the Sistine Chapel.

The novel is a very new form of art. It was unthinkable until the invention of printing and impractical until a significant fraction of the population became literate. But when the conditions were right, it suddenly became huge. The great serialized novelists of the 19th Century were like rock stars or movie stars. The printing press and the apparatus of publishing had given these creators a means to bypass traditional arbiters and gatekeepers of culture and connect directly to a mass audience. And the economics worked out such that they didn't need to land a commission or find a patron in order to put bread on the table. The creators of those novels were therefore able to have a connection with a mass audience and a livelihood fundamentally different from other types of artists.

Nowadays, rock stars and movie stars are making all the money. But the publishing industry still works for some lucky novelists who find a way to establish a connection with a readership sufficiently large to put bread on their tables. It's conventional to refer to these as "commercial" novelists, but I hate that term, so I'm going to call them Beowulf writers.

But this is not true for a great many other writers who are every bit as talented and worthy of finding readers. And so, in addition, we have got an alternate system that makes it possible for those writers to pursue their careers and make their voices heard. Just as Renaissance princes supported writers like Dante because they felt it was the right thing to do, there are many affluent persons in modern society who, by making donations to cultural institutions like universities, support all sorts of artists, including writers. Usually they are called "literary" as opposed to "commercial" but I hate that term too, so I'm going to call them Dante writers. And this is what I mean when I speak of a bifurcated system.

Like all tricks for dividing people into two groups, this is simplistic, and needs to be taken with a grain of salt. But there is a cultural difference between these two types of writers, rooted in to whom they are accountable, and it explains what MosesJones is complaining about. Beowulf writers and Dante writers appear to have the same job, but in fact there is a quite radical difference between them---hence the odd conversation that I had with my fellow author at the writer's conference. Because she'd never heard of me, she made the quite reasonable assumption that I was a Dante writer---one so new or obscure that she'd never seen me mentioned in a journal of literary criticism, and never bumped into me at a conference. Therefore, I couldn't be making any money at it. Therefore, I was most likely teaching somewhere. All perfectly logical. In order to set her straight, I had to let her know that the reason she'd never heard of me was because I was famous.

All of this places someone like me in critical limbo. As everyone knows, there are literary critics, and journals that publish their work, and I imagine they have the same dual role as art critics. That is, they are engaging in intellectual discourse for its own sake. But they are also performing an economic function by making judgments. These judgments, taken collectively, eventually determine who's deemed worthy of receiving fellowships, teaching appointments, etc.

The relationship between that critical apparatus and Beowulf writers is famously awkward and leads to all sorts of peculiar misunderstandings. Occasionally I'll take a hit from a critic for being somehow arrogant or egomaniacal, which is difficult to understand from my point of view sitting here and just trying to write about whatever I find interesting. To begin with, it's not clear why they think I'm any more arrogant than anyone else who writes a book and actually expects that someone's going to read it. Secondly, I don't understand why they think that this is relevant enough to rate mention in a review. After all, if I'm going to eat at a restaurant, I don't care about the chef's personality flaws---I just want to eat good food. I was slagged for entitling my latest book "The System of the World" by one critic who found that title arrogant. That criticism is simply wrong; the critic has completely misunderstood why I chose that title. Why on earth would anyone think it was arrogant? Well, on the Dante side of the bifurcation it's implicit that authority comes from the top down, and you need to get in the habit of deferring to people who are older and grander than you. In that world, apparently one must never select a grand-sounding title for one's book until one has reached Nobel Prize status. But on my side, if I'm trying to write a book about a bunch of historical figures who were consciously trying to understand and invent the System of the World, then this is an obvious choice for the title of the book. The same argument, I believe, explains why the accusation of having a big ego is considered relevant for inclusion in a book review. Considering the economic function of these reviews (explained above) it is worth pointing out which writers are and are not suited for participating in the somewhat hierarchical and political community of Dante writers. Egomaniacs would only create trouble.

Mind you, much of the authority and seniority in that world is benevolent, or at least well-intentioned. If you are trying to become a writer by taking expensive classes in that subject, you want your teacher to know more about it than you and to behave like a teacher. And so you might hear advice along the lines of "I don't think you're ready to tackle Y yet, you need to spend a few more years honing your skills with X" and the like. All perfectly reasonable. But people on the Beowulf side may never have taken a writing class in their life. They just tend to lunge at whatever looks interesting to them, write whatever they please, and let the chips fall where they may. So we may seem not merely arrogant, but completely unhinged. It reminds me somewhat of the split between Christians and Faeries depicted in Susannah Clarke's wonderful book "Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell." The faeries do whatever they want and strike the Christians (humans) as ludicrously irresponsible and "barely sane." They don't seem to deserve or appreciate their freedom.

Later at the writer's conference, I introduced myself to someone who was responsible for organizing it, and she looked at me keenly and said, "Ah, yes, you're the one who's going to bring in our males 18-32." And sure enough, when we got to the venue, there were the males 18-32, looking quite out of place compared to the baseline lit-festival crowd. They stood at long lines at the microphones and asked me one question after another while ignoring the Dante writers sitting at the table with me. Some of the males 18-32 were so out of place that they seemed to have warped in from the Land of Faerie, and had the organizers wondering whether they should summon the police. But in the end they were more or less reasonable people who just wanted to talk about books and were as mystified by the literary people as the literary people were by them.

In the same vein, I just got back from the National Book Festival on the Capitol Mall in D.C., where I crossed paths for a few minutes with Neil Gaiman. This was another event in which Beowulf writers and Dante writers were all mixed together. The organizers had queues set up in front of signing tables. Neil had mentioned on his blog that he was going to be there, and so hundreds, maybe thousands of his readers had showed up there as early as 5:30 a.m. to get stuff signed. The organizers simply had not anticipated this and so---very much to their credit---they had to make all sorts of last-minute rearrangements to accomodate the crowd. Neil spent many hours signing. As he says on his blog

http://www.neilgaiman.com/journal/journal.asp

the Washington Post later said he did this because he was a "savvy businessman." Of course Neil was actually doing it to be polite; but even simple politeness to one's fans can seem grasping and cynical when viewed from the other side.

Because of such reactions, I know that certain people are going to read this screed as further evidence that I have a big head. But let me make at least a token effort to deflect this by stipulating that the system I am describing here IS NOT FAIR and that IT MAKES NO SENSE and that I don't deserve to have the freedom that is accorded a Beowulf writer when many talented and excellent writers---some of them good friends of mine---end up selling small numbers of books and having to cultivate grants, fellowships, faculty appointments, etc.

Anyway, most Beowulf writing is ignored by the critical apparatus or lightly made fun of when it's noticed at all. Literary critics know perfectly well that nothing they say is likely to have much effect on sales. Let's face it, when Neil Gaiman publishes Anansi Boys, all of his readers are going to know about it through his site and most of them are going to buy it and none of them is likely to see a review in the New York Review of Books, or care what that review says.

So what of MosesJones's original question, which was entitled "The lack of respect?" My answer is that I don't pay that much notice to these things because I am aware at some level that I am on one side of the bifurcation and most literary critics are on the other, and we simply are not that relevant to each other's lives and careers.

What is most interesting to me is when people make efforts to "route around" the apparatus of literary criticism and publish their thoughts about books in place where you wouldn't normally look for book reviews. For example, a year ago there was a piece by Edward Rothstein in the New York Times about Quicksilver that appears to have been a sort of wildcat review. He just got interested in the book and decided to write about it, independent of the New York Times's normal book-reviewing apparatus. It is not the first time such a thing has happened with one of my books.

It has happened many times in history that new systems will come along and, instead of obliterating the old, will surround and encapsulate them and work in symbiosis with them but otherwise pretty much leave them alone (think mitochondria) and sometimes I get the feeling that something similar is happening with these two literary worlds. The fact that we are having a discussion like this one on a forum such as Slashdot is Exhibit A.

3) Singularity - by randalx

What are your thoughts on Vernor Vinge's Singularity prediction. Is it inevitable? Will humans become a part of it or be left behind by this new "species"?


Neal:

I can never get past the structural similarities between the singularity prediction and the apocalypse of St. John the Divine. This is not the place to parse it out, but the key thing they have in common is the idea of a rapture, in which some chosen humans will be taken up and made one with the infinite while others will be left behind.

I know Vernor. To know him is to respect him. He kicked my ass (as well as J. K. Rowling's and Greg Bear's and a few other people's) at the 2000 Hugo Awards, and on top of that he knows more physics than I ever will. So I don't for a moment think that he is peddling any such ideas with his prediction of a singularity. I am only telling you why I have a personal mental block as far as the Singularity prediction is concerned.

My thoughts are more in line with those of Jaron Lanier, who points out that while hardware might be getting faster all the time, software is shit (I am paraphrasing his argument). And without software to do something useful with all that hardware, the hardware's nothing more than a really complicated space heater.

4) Who would win? (Score:5, Funny) - by Call Me Black Cloud

In a fight between you and William Gibson, who would win?


Neal:

You don't have to settle for mere idle speculation. Let me tell you how it came out on the three occasions when we did fight.

The first time was a year or two after SNOW CRASH came out. I was doing a reading/signing at White Dwarf Books in Vancouver. Gibson stopped by to say hello and extended his hand as if to shake. But I remembered something Bruce Sterling had told me. For, at the time, Sterling and I had formed a pact to fight Gibson. Gibson had been regrown in a vat from scraps of DNA after Sterling had crashed an LNG tanker into Gibson's Stealth pleasure barge in the Straits of Juan de Fuca. During the regeneration process, telescoping Carbonite stilettos had been incorporated into Gibson's arms. Remembering this in the nick of time, I grabbed the signing table and flipped it up between us. Of course the Carbonite stilettos pierced it as if it were cork board, but this spoiled his aim long enough for me to whip my wakizashi out from between my shoulder blades and swing at his head. He deflected the blow with a force blast that sprained my wrist. The falling table knocked over a space heater and set fire to the store. Everyone else fled. Gibson and I dueled among blazing stacks of books for a while. Slowly I gained the upper hand, for, on defense, his Praying Mantis style was no match for my Flying Cloud technique. But I lost him behind a cloud of smoke. Then I had to get out of the place. The streets were crowded with his black-suited minions and I had to turn into a swarm of locusts and fly back to Seattle.

The second time was a few years later when Gibson came through Seattle on his IDORU tour. Between doing some drive-by signings at local bookstores, he came and devastated my quarter of the city. I had been in a trance for seven days and seven nights and was unaware of these goings-on, but he came to me in a vision and taunted me, and left a message on my cellphone. That evening he was doing a reading at Kane Hall on the University of Washington campus. Swathed in black, I climbed to the top of the hall, mesmerized his snipers, sliced a hole in the roof using a plasma cutter, let myself into the catwalks above the stage, and then leapt down upon him from forty feet above. But I had forgotten that he had once studied in the same monastery as I, and knew all of my techniques. He rolled away at the last moment. I struck only the lectern, smashing it to kindling. Snatching up one jagged shard of oak I adopted the Mountain Tiger position just as you would expect. He pulled off his wireless mike and began to whirl it around his head. From there, the fight proceeded along predictable lines. As a stalemate developed we began to resort more and more to the use of pure energy, modulated by Red Lotus incantations of the third Sung group, which eventually to the collapse of the building's roof and the loss of eight hundred lives. But as they were only peasants, we did not care.

Our third fight occurred at the Peace Arch on the U.S./Canadian border between Seattle and Vancouver. Gibson wished to retire from that sort of lifestyle that required ceaseless training in the martial arts and sleeping outdoors under the rain. He only wished to sit in his garden brushing out novels on rice paper. But honor dictated that he must fight me for a third time first. Of course the Peace Arch did not remain standing for long. Before long my sword arm hung useless at my side. One of my psi blasts kicked up a large divot of earth and rubble, uncovering a silver metallic object, hitherto buried, that seemed to have been crafted by an industrial designer. It was a nitro-veridian device that had been buried there by Sterling. We were able to fly clear before it detonated. The blast caused a seismic rupture that split off a sizable part of Canada and created what we now know as Vancouver Island. This was the last fight between me and Gibson. For both of us, by studying certain ancient prophecies, had independently arrived at the same conclusion, namely that Sterling's professed interest in industrial design was a mere cover for work in superweapons. Gibson and I formed a pact to fight Sterling. So far we have made little headway in seeking out his lair of brushed steel and white LEDs, because I had a dentist appointment and Gibson had to attend a writers' conference, but keep an eye on Slashdot for any further developments.

5) What are you reading these days? - by IvyMike

Since you're Neal Stephenson, I suspect the answer could be something like "surveys of ancient Sumerian accounting systems".

If that's the case, please include a work of modern fiction or two in your list; something you think that a fan of your work might also enjoy. :)


Neal:

Fiction I have lately read and enjoyed:

Set this House in Order by Matt Ruff
Ilium by Dan Simmons
Iron Council by China Mieville
Perfect Circle by Sean Stewart
The I Love Bees alternate reality game
Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susannah Clarke
The Fool's Tale by Nicole Galland (in galleys; soon to be published)
Short story collections by Etgar Keret: The Bus Driver who Wanted to be God, and The Nimrod Flip-out. Last time I checked, The Nimrod Flip-out was only available from an Australian publisher named Picador, but this should pose only the most minor of challenges to Slashdot readers. Keret is a young Israeli writer who has also done some work in film and graphic novels.

Nonfiction:

Skeletons on the Zahara by Dean King
The Lincoln-Douglas Debates and Lincoln's Cooper Union address
Battle Cry of Freedom by James McPherson

6) storygramming -by Doc Ruby

You programmed computers before you wrote novels. Greg Egan shares that hyphenated career, and continues to illustrate his stories with Java applets [netspace.net.au]. Do you still program, possibly targeting the same subjects with your word processor as your compiler?

As _Snow Crash_ was originally designed as an interactive game, and such landmarks as _Myst_ have regenerated as (usually bad) novels, do you see the arrival of a truly multimedia story, delivered simultaneously in multiple media, anytime soon? By whom, specifically or generally?


Neal:

It has already happened in the form of the I Love Bees alternate reality game, which, as many of you must know, is a promotional campaign for Halo 2. I know the people who did it, but I have lost track of what I promised not to reveal publicly, and so will shut up for now.

I still program, but I tend to do it as a diversion from writing, and so there is little crossover between it and fiction writing. Modern programming is hairy and difficult for me to get a grip on. This is because (1) there is so much user interface code, which kind of makes my eyes glaze over, and (2) GNU type code is crammed with macros, compiler directives and switches that make it very difficult for me to read the source files. Lately my platform of choice has been Mathematica, which is expensive (compared to gcc) but makes it easy to do anything with a few lines of code. Mathematica makes it easy to do proper documentation, in that you can mix narrative material freely with executable statements.

For Cryptonomicon I needed to generate some illustrations of a cutaway view of the mountain where Goto Dengo was building his tunnels. It needed to have a rough, natural-looking profile that maintained its roughness, but still had the same overall shape, when I zoomed in on it for more detailed illustrations. I did this with a Mathematica notebook that used the classic fractal technique of midpoint displacement.

For the Baroque Cycle books I needed to convert my manuscripts, which were all TeX files, into a Quark format used by the publisher. So I wrote an emacs lisp program that churned through the TeX files looking for TeX escape codes and converting them to their equivalents in Quark. This was nasty and tedious but, in the end, reasonably satisfying.

7) Money - by querencia

One of the major themes in Cryptonomicon that carried over (in a big way) to The Baroque Cycle is money. You introduced some "futuristic" views of currency and of where money might be going in Cryptonomicon, and you skillfully managed to do the same thing, while explaining some of the history of modern monetary systems, in the most recent books.

You've obviously spent a lot of time thinking about money lately. Is there anything going on in the modern world with monetary systems (barter networks, for example) that you find particularly interesting?


What do you see on the horizon with respect to money?

Neal:

Actually, what's interesting about money is that it doesn't seem to change that much at all. It became fantastically sophisticated hundreds of years ago. Back before people knew about germs, evolution, the Table of Elements, and other stuff that we now take for granted, people were engaging in financial manipulations that seem quite modern in their sophistication. So if I had to take a wild guess---and believe me, it is a wild guess---I'd say that money and the way it works is going to be a constant, not a variable.

8) BeOS - by Coryoth

When you wrote "In the Beginning was the Command Line," you were very much in love with BeOS. As nice as BeOS was, it is now mostly gone. Do you still use BeOS 5, or have you acquired YellowTab from Zeta? Or, instead have you embraced the new UNIX based MacOS X as the OS you want to use when you "Just want to go to Disneyland"?


Neal:

You guessed right: I embraced OS X as soon as it was available and have never looked back. So a lot of "In the beginning was the command line" is now obsolete. I keep meaning to update it, but if I'm honest with myself, I have to say this is unlikely.

9) Travel tips for modern primitives? - by timothy

Mr. Stephenson:

I greatly enjoy your travel stories, both non-fiction (Mother Earth, Motherboard) and in particular your descriptions of the Philippines in Cryptonomicon.

Can you share some of the ideas you've developed for savvy trav'lin? For instance, how do you deal with carrying sufficient technology (whatever level you deem this to be) while minimizing the risk of theft, breakage, or loss by other means? Do you dress native or carry your entire wardrobe? [And broader, do you travel with something close to nothing, picking up necessary items as the need arises? What do you not leave home without?]

Do you carry any sort of self-defense means in some places, and if so What and Where?


Neal:

I haven't done that much in the way of adventuresome travel lately. Even when I was doing so, I was never the sort of hardened third-world travel geek that you are imagining. The thing is that when you go to such countries you can typically get a room in a five-star hotel for less than a hundred bucks a night. At that rate, it's easy to be a sellout and wallow in luxury. Staying in a dive is more romantic, but makes it harder to write. My excuse (if I need one) is that typically I'm not writing about backpackers and rural people in those countries; I'm writing about well-heeled expats whose natural habitat is airport bars and Shangri-La hotels. So that's where I tend to end up.

Re "self-defense means:" I am reminded of a history book I read recently entitled "Skeletons on the Zahara" by Dean King. It is about some American sailors who get shipwrecked on the Atlantic Coast of Africa and go through hell. Eventually most of them make it back to freedom with the help of some Arab traders based in Morocco. These traders range across the Sahara on incredibly arduous journeys. They are just about the toughest and meanest hombres you can possibly imagine. They've been through all kinds of fights and ambushes, plagues of locusts, sandstorms, etc. and come out on top. Because of their success they have acquired camels, horses, and weapons: not only swords and daggers but rifles and shotguns too. After having rescued the Americans, these guys go out on another journey in the desert, and find themselves surrounded by a few dozen people who are wretched even by the standards of the Sahara: no animals, little in the way of clothing, and no weapons except for bags containing stones. A fight breaks out. The traders discharge their weapons and kill everyone they shoot at: maybe half a dozen. Then before they can reload they are all killed by flying stones.

The best "self-defense means" when you are surrounded by a hundred million people of some other culture is to avoid dangerous places and figure out some way to get along with the folks around you.

10) Confidential Proposal, Off shore data haven (Score:5, Funny) - by SlashDread

Greetings to you in the name of the most high God, from my beloved country Nigeria.

I am sorry and I solicit your permission into your privacy. I am Barrister Leonardo Akume, lawyer to the late Dr. Koffi Abachus, a brilliant Nigerian mathematician.

My former client, late Dr. Koffi Abachus, died in a mysterious plane crash in the year 1994 on the way to a scientific conference to make an announcement of the utmost importance to mankind.

He was planning to present a paper regarding his extensive work on data storage. It is said the data storage device he had developed, would be roughly ten times more secure compared to the latest quantum excyption techniques. The device was about the size of a steamer trunk, and stored on a privately owned island close to the coast of Nigeria. Dr Koffi Abachus is also the King of the local tribe by heritage...


Neal:

Your proposition sounds quite reasonable. In order for me to provide you with the support that you need, I will need for you to wire $100,000 into my Swiss bank account...

Oh well.. Should there BE a data haven? If so, where?

Neal:

At this point, that is probably a technical question that I might not be competent to answer. I can carry a gig of encrypted data on a thumb drive now, and it doesn't cost much. Soon it'll be smaller and cheaper. Millions of people in different countries carrying gigs of data on thumb drives, iPods, cellphones, etc. make for a pretty robust distributed data storage system. It is difficult to imagine how one could build a centralized, hardened facility that would be more robust than that. But perhaps there's some technical or regulatory angle that I'm failing to appreciate here. I have not kept up to speed on this since Cryptonomicon.

11) Blue Origin - by Concerned Onlooker

The Wikipedia lists you as a part-time advisor for Blue Origin [blueorigin.com], a company that is working to "develop a crewed, suborbital launch system." What is it that you do for them and has the recent winning of the X-Prize by the Spaceship One team had any effect on Blue Origin's plans? What are your visions of future private space flight?


Neal:

Like Spock on the deck of the Enterprise, I sit in the corner and await opportunities to jump out and yammer about Science. Unlike Spock, I don't have anyone reporting to me and I never get to sit in the captain's chair and aim the phasers. This is probably good.

Though the X-Prize is cool and good, Blue Origin never intended to compete for it. Consequently, it has had no effect, other than destroying productivity whenever a SpaceShipOne flight is being broadcast.

As for my visions of future private space flight: here I have to remind you of something, which is that, up to this point in the interview, I have been wearing my novelist hat, meaning that I talk freely about whatever I please. But private space flight is an area where I wear a different hat (or helmet). I do not freely disseminate my thoughts on this one topic because I have agreed to sell those thoughts to Blue Origin. Admittedly, this feels a little strange to a novelist who is accustomed to running his mouth whenever he feels like it. But it is a small price to pay for the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to become a minor character in a Robert Heinlein novel.

12) Do new publishing models make sense? - by Infonaut

Have you contemplated using any sort of alternative to traditional copyright for your works of fiction, such as a flavor of Creative Commons [creativecommons.org] license? Do you feel that making money as a writer and more open copyright are compatible in the long term, or do you think that writers like Lessig who distribute electronically via CC are merely indulging in a short-lived fad?


Neal:

Publishing is a very ancient and crafty industry that existed and flourished before the idea of copyright even existed. When copyright came into existence, the publishing industry dealt with it and moved on. My suspicion is that everything that's been going on lately will amount to a sort of fire drill that will force publishing to scurry around and make some new arrangements so that they can get back to making money for themselves and for authors.

You can use the brick-and-mortar bookstore as a way to think about this. There was a time maybe five years ago when many people were questioning whether brick-and-mortar bookstores were going to survive the onslaught of online retailers. Now, if you take the narrow view that a bookstore is nothing more than a machine that swaps money for books, then it follows that there's no need for a physical store. But here we are five years later. Some bookstores have gone out of business, it's true. But there are big, beautiful bookstores all over the place, with sofas and coffee bars and author appearances and so on. Why? Because it turns out that a bookstore is a lot more than a machine that swaps money for books.

Likewise, if you think of a publisher as a machine that makes copies of bits and sells them, then you're going to predict the elimination of publishers. But that's only the smallest part of what publishers actually do. This is not to say that electronic distribution via CC is just a fad, any more than online bookstores are a fad. They will keep on going in parallel, and all of this will get sorted out in time.

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GNAA announces victory over mbonig (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576390)

GNAA announces victory over mbonig

GNAA freedom fighters attack mbonig into submission

Cakedrink KillsPics - Sinclair Broadcasting Correspondent

In the GNAA's continued effort to combat mindless idiocy, blogging, and bigoted oppression of gay nigger rights, GNAA member Penisbird has announced victory over mindless slashbot and blogger [blogspot.com] mbonig.

In true Hitlerian fashion, mbonig wanted to deny freedom speech to gay black men under the guise of his own nazi-esque values of censorship. "Gasgaynigs", mbonig was quoted as saying to a swooning crowd of neo-nazis ready for a golden shower of his drivel.

GNAA member Penisbird, who is considered of one of the most gifted and intelligent members, according to the GNAT or Gay Nigger Aptitude Test, excellently crafted his arguments against the nazi, as shown here [slashdot.org] , and was able to counter every point with concise and irrefutable facts. In the usual Slashdot hypocrisy, anyone who fights for the legitimate rights of the unpopular is considered a troll and this thread was no different.

The tragic defeat on Slashdot forced mbonig to retreat to his blog [blogspot.com] and admit that the GNAA's posts are free speech (unlike what he said earlier) while at the same time slandering Penisbird's impeccable character. Penisbird does not tolerate such insolence and proceeded to attack his wretched blog.

In the most skilled fashion, Penisbird proceeded to flood his blog as a form of legitimate protest. Like an relentless flood of nigger cocks, Mbonig (which is an intentional slur against niggers) tried to squelch the massive flood of protest posts by deleting hundreds of comments but could not keep up. His next step was to disable commenting for a couple of days. The very morning he restored comments and declared that by requiring logins, the attacks would cease. Wrong. Penisbird was on the attack and continued the assault.

After the morning offensive, mbonig quickly and embarrassingly disabled comments, declaring that "script kiddies" (the scripts in question consist of Microsoft Internet Explorer and the refresh button) do not deserve the same free speech rights he enjoys. However, Penisbird was victorious in that he caused mbonig to permanently disable comments. Penisbird vows to keep up the assault on his Slashdot posts and anywhere else he tries to oppress free speech rights online.

mbonig claims that he is not hiding who he is. Really? What is your last name? Where do you live? Oh, it seems that you are hiding who you are. Hypocrite.

About mbonig:

mbonig is a mindless Slashbot and blogger [blogspot.com] who constantly tries to oppress free speech online. He is a known neo-Nazi and supports the gassing of Gay Men of African Descent.

Mbonig is currently offering gmail invites, You may partake his invitation below:
https://gmail.google.com/gmail/a-b0ab39f1a8-51723 [google.com]

About GNAA:

GNAA
(GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the first organization which
gathers GAY NIGGERS from all over America and abroad for one common goal - being GAY NIGGERS.

Are you GAY [dickcream.com] ?
Are you a NIGGER [mugshots.org] ?
Are you a GAY NIGGER [gay-sex-access.com] ?

If you answered "Yes" to all of the above questions, then GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) might be exactly what you've been looking for!
Join GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) today, and enjoy all the benefits of being a full-time GNAA member.
GNAA (GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA) is the fastest-growing GAY NIGGER community with THOUSANDS of members all over United States of America. You, too, can be a part of GNAA if you join today!

Why not? It's quick and easy - only 3 simple steps!

  • First, you have to obtain a copy of GAY NIGGERS FROM OUTER SPACE THE MOVIE [imdb.com] and watch it. (You can download the movie (~130mb) using BitTorrent, by clicking here [idge.net] .
  • Second, you need to succeed in posting a GNAA "first post" on slashdot.org [slashdot.org] , a popular "news for trolls" website
  • Third, you need to join the official GNAA irc channel #GNAA on irc.gnaa.us, and apply for membership.
Talk to one of the ops or any of the other members in the channel to sign up today!

If you are having trouble locating #GNAA, the official GAY NIGGER ASSOCIATION OF AMERICA irc channel, you might be on a wrong irc network. The correct network is Niggernet, and you can connect to irc.gnaa.us as our official server.

If you have mod points and would like to support GNAA, please moderate this post up.

.________________________________________________. fucking
| ______________________________________._a,____ | CmdrTaco
| _______a_._______a_______aj#0s_____aWY!400.___ | will
| __ad#7!!*P____a.d#0a____#!-_#0i___.#!__W#0#___ | he ever learn that
| _j#'_.00#,___4#dP_"#,__j#,__0#Wi___*00P!_"#L,_ | GNAA is totally
| _"#ga#9!01___"#01__40,_"4Lj#!_4#g_________"01_ | unstoppable? Teamed
| ________"#,___*@`__-N#____`___-!^_____________ | up with the other troll groups,
| _________#1__________?________________________ | GNAA will absolutely own
| _________j1___________________________________ | the shitty place that is slashdot.
| ____a,___jk_GAY_NIGGER_ASSOCIATION_OF_AMERICA_ | Just remember, the longer the lines are,
| ____!4yaa#l___________________________________ | the smaller CmdrTaco's penis.
| ______-"!^____________________________________ | This logo is (C) 2003, 2004 GNAA [idge.net]
` _______________________________________________'

(C) GNAA 2004

DOES ANYONE GIVE A SHIT (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576394)

FUCK NO!

Boy, don't I feel humble. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576431)

Many of us, and I'm sure a very special Slashdot editor, must be pitching major tent because of Neal's extraordinary trolling ability.
So where do we all line up to get some of that sweet aromatic testicle dew?

Wow, big shock (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576445)

Slashdot editor "Timothy" gets one of his own questions selected and answered.

Re:Wow, big shock (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576567)

How is this a troll? There is a questionable track record regarding how editors with unlimited mod points can and have covertly abuse(d) the system to their advantage or personal vandettas.

Re:Wow, big shock (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576646)

You answered your own question. Michael will continually mod his post down.

Why not just get on your knees for him Roblimo... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576570)

There is nothing better than a Slashdot interview with someone who not only reads and understands Slashdot but can out-troll the trolls. Admittedly, the questions you asked Neal Stephenson were great in their own right, but his answers... Wow! let's just say that this guy shows how it's done.

Wow wipe that brown smear off your nose, Roblimo. Jeeze what a tool.

Thanks, Neal! (5, Interesting)

American AC in Paris (230456) | about 10 years ago | (#10576447)

The best "self-defense means" when you are surrounded by a hundred million people of some other culture is to avoid dangerous places and figure out some way to get along with the folks around you.

...unless, of course, you happen to bump into Bruce Sterling.

You're spot-on, though. An open eye, a well-guarded money-belt, and a careful itinerary are your best defenses overseas. Shockingly enough, the vast minority of the world's population wants to attack tourists.

(I don't know whether or not Baltimore qualifies as a foreign land, but the missus and I would be happy to act as local guides next time you're in town. We know where the good beer is...)

Thanks, Neal! Whoever the hell you are you tool.. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576692)

God what an egomaniac! Who the hell is this dork with the serious self-importance complex? Some lame sci-fi writer that no one except for dorks that live in their parents' basements has heard of?

Re:Thanks, Neal! (4, Interesting)

mekkab (133181) | about 10 years ago | (#10576720)

Just don't go to the brewers art late on a sunday night; my sis got to watch a firefight (Something I missed in my 5 years as a Baltimoron).

That being said, yeah; if you crawl around the streets late at night looking like you don't fit in you will get trouble. If you stick to the safe tourist spots the only thing you have to worry about are the pickpockets.

Speaking of pickpockets, in a UK station (Victoria?! I have no idea!) warning people about pickpockets, and one of the comments on the sign is to know where your wallet is at all times. Pickpockets watch people reading the sign; typically they will put their hand on where they keep their wallet! (breast pocket, back right pocket, wahtevet) Then they know where to hit! ;)

Re:Thanks, Neal! (5, Interesting)

American AC in Paris (230456) | about 10 years ago | (#10576905)

Yeah, I've yet to witness one myself. Shame--Brewers' Art is good stuff.

Professional pickpockets are damn good at what they do. We'd wear money belts on a daily basis when travelling overseas--when worn down the front of your pants, they're hard enough to get at that the pickpockets won't even bother with you.

You're right--it is all about blending in. Way back when, we met and talked with an old Scot one night at our local haunt in Paris. He was part of a group visiting for the Rugby World Cup, and mentioned how three of the ladies in their group had their purses picked whilst visiting Notre Dame that day, and that he couldn't figure out why they'd had such bad luck. We sympathized with him but had to surpress a bit of a grin--as he (and many of his compatriots) were decked out in kilts, caps, and face paint...

Re:Thanks, Neal! (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576747)

(I don't know whether or not Baltimore qualifies as a foreign land, but the missus and I would be happy to act as local guides next time you're in town. We know where the good beer is...)

I'm open-sourcing your knowledge:

  • The Wharf Rat
  • The Brewer's Art

Also recommended:

  • The Mt. Royal Tavern
  • The Owl Bar

Plentiful, good, and cheap beer is pretty much the best thing about Baltimore.

Re:Thanks, Neal! (5, Funny)

hypnagogue (700024) | about 10 years ago | (#10576766)

Shockingly enough, the vast minority of the world's population wants to attack tourists.
I had no idea how vast that violent minority was. I'm staying home.

Open Letter to Neal Stephenson (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576449)

iji iji iji iji iji iji jtiji iji iji iji iji iji
iji iji iji iji iji ijjDMNQtiji iji iji iji iji ij
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iji iji iji iji ijcSMNMNMNMNHJiji iji iji ij iji ij
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iji iji iji jDMNMNMNMNHJijtQMNMN MNMNMNMNMW5iji iji
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itQMNMNMW6iji iji tKMNMNMN MNMNKtiji icSMNMNMNMNHJi
iJHMNHEILMW6iji ijcSMNMN MNMNMNDjiji ijicXMNMNMNN5i
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iji iji5WMNMNMNMNM MNMNN5ij5NMNMNMNMNSciji iji iji
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iji iji ijiSWM MNMNW6iji iji tKMNMNMNMNXciji iji ij
iji iji iji cSMNWSiji iji tQMNMNMNMNDjiji iji iji
iji iji ij iji c6ciji iji QMNMNMNMNQjiji iji iji ij
iji iji iji iji iji ijjDMHITLERNQtiji iji iji iji
iji ij iji iji iji ijcXMNMNMNMNKtiji iji iji iji ij
iji iji iji iji iji jQMNMNMNHJiji iji iji iji iji
ij iji iji iji iji iji tKMNHJiji iji iji iji iji ij
iji iji iji iji iji iji tYiji iji iji iji iji ij ij

Neal Stephenson out-trolls the trolls? (1, Offtopic)

Exmet Paff Daxx (535601) | about 10 years ago | (#10576485)

That would imply that trolls were allowed to ask Neal Stephenson questions, which is impossible because the moderation system elminates all trolling before it reaches a score of +5. Can we get the story amended? All in all a pretty good interview though... very detailed response on encryption tools as weapons.

Re:Neal Stephenson out-trolls the trolls? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576536)

Not true. Remember Signal 11? He demonstrated that the moderation system can be socially engineered to give you high karma.

The Slashdot moderation system also serves as a means to eliminate dissent and unpopular opinions. Anyone who asks a question that does not fit the general groupthink will be modded down, regardless of wether the comment was a good question or not.

Re:Neal Stephenson out-trolls the trolls? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576669)

Anyone who asks a question that does not fit the general groupthink will be modded down, regardless of wether the comment was a good question or not.

not necessarily. if you are able to formulate popular opinions in comments about typical slashdot topics, then you will eventually be able to post comments with a starting score of 2, which for a certain time, will enable your comments to be read by more people than if you started trolling at a score of 0 or less.

sometimes i even get lucky and get a comment moderated up to +5 by fellow trolls with moderation points. but a moderation war inevitably ensues and i end up with a +0 Funny/Interesting/Flamebait (or other combination) comment.

besides, to respond to the grandparent comment, maybe Neil reads slashdot at -1 to see all comments?

Re:Neal Stephenson out-trolls the trolls? (1)

Txiasaeia (581598) | about 10 years ago | (#10576775)

Are you referring to Neil Gaiman or Neal Stephenson?

Re:Neal Stephenson out-trolls the trolls? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10577019)

it wouldnt be a proper troll post if his name was spelled correctly, now would it?

Slashdot Users (5, Funny)

Pinkoir (666130) | about 10 years ago | (#10576463)

(the sound of a million Slashdot readers hitting the "back" button...)

C'mon Neal...you should know slashdotters better than that. We don't hit the back button, we use mouse gestures.

-Pinkoir

Re:Slashdot Users (4, Funny)

spellraiser (764337) | about 10 years ago | (#10576539)

Amateur!

I use the backspace key for this, naturally. Anyone who uses a mouse at all is a false geek!

Re:Slashdot Users (2, Funny)

Mulletproof (513805) | about 10 years ago | (#10576699)

"C'mon Neal...you should know slashdotters better than that. We don't hit the back button, we use mouse gestures."

How about "spinning the mouse wheel wildly"?

Re:Slashdot Users (2, Funny)

SilentChris (452960) | about 10 years ago | (#10576751)

"We don't hit the back button, we use mouse gestures."

Not in Lynx I don't, you insensitive clod!

Re:Slashdot Users (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576776)

A real hacker would have mouse gestures in lynx too!

Re:Slashdot Users (2, Funny)

torpor (458) | about 10 years ago | (#10576758)


Pah! Mice are for weanies who learned computers in the 90's.

(I use Alt-Left Arrow)

you're right (1)

Anubis350 (772791) | about 10 years ago | (#10576908)

he does

But private space flight is an area where I wear a different hat (or helmet).

he's obviously wearing his tinfoil hat.....

Re:Slashdot Users (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576972)

Mouse gestures? Isn't that what keyboards are for?

In the Ghetto, Chapters 1-10 (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576471)

In the Ghetto Part I

It was pitch-black in the roach-infested double-wide trailer. All was quiet except for the gurgling sound of an infant, shut away in its own room.

The floor creaked as a mass of flesh made its way to the infant's room. The door slowly opened, creating a growing triangle of light on the floor. The infant coughed and gagged and began to cry as it was overpowered by the horrid stench.

"It's time to suck on daddy's special pacifier, Marticock!"

As the door creaked shut, the whale in the master bedroom wept into her pillow. What kind of life was this for her precious little Marticock?

In the Ghetto Part II

Reza sat at the kitchen table, her cigarette smoke blending with the steam rising from her coffee cup. She took a sip of coffee and adjusted the rollers in her hair. She rubbed her eyes, which were still puffy from crying into her pillow all night.

Vlad shuffled into the room, wearing nothing but his briefs and a stained t-shirt, "hey you fat, pig, how are you this morning," he burped.

"Vlad, we have to talk."

"What now, fat-ass?"

"It's about Marticock. You have to stop molesting him... I think it will make it harder for him to make friends later on..."

Vlad slammed his fist onto the table, causing Reza to jump. She farted.

"You're not supposed to think, bitch! You're supposed to be making me breakfast! Where is it?!"

"Vlad, please..."

"Remember when we saw the Matrix Reloaded last weekend? THAT'S the style of Martial Arts I practice, bitch. You're about to get a FREE LESSON!"

Reza rose from her chair, causing it to fall over and ran - as best she could - into the bedroom to cry again.

"Fucking bitch," Vlad farted.

In the Ghetto Part III

Vlad sat on the living room couch, thecushions torn and vomiting foam from their inner core as he bounced up and down in excitement. He screamed at the television, as he shook his fist at it, sending Budweiser spilling out all over the floor.

"Come on, you goddamn white boy, if I wuz in there, he'd be dead now. Let's see some goddamn wrestling!"

Vlad didn't notice the doorbell ringing and continued screaming obsessively at the television as Reza bounced through the room to open the door.

Reza stood at the doorway in a sheeny, purple, see-through nighty, smiling at the black couple who greeted her, "hi I'm Reza! You must be Pedro and Florence from the personal ad..."

As a commercial flashed onto the television, Vlad turned to see what all the comotion was about. He recognized Pedro in the blue cathode-ray glow, "hey DOOOOOG!"

Vlad hopped from the couch, emitting a spurt of gas as he did so.

Pedro and Florence, who was holding a fat black child with curly hair, entered the dingey apartment. Vlad and Pedro high-fived each other and then Pedro began to rap:

This is Pedro G / Gangsta P / Sippin' on Hi-C / Smokin' PCP / Smooooooth Nigga

Vlad began to break-dance to the off-the-cuff rap. Farting with each bend of the leg and twist of the waist.

Oooooooh. A little Mastah B on the Bonus T
Got it goin' on girl
Droppin' Baby Marticock on your ass, Byatttch

Vlad and Pedro laughed heartily and butted guts.

"You ready to do some swappin' V-Dog," Pedro drooled. Reza grew wet with the suggestion.

"You bet I is, bro," Vlad replied eagerly. He trampled off into the other room, much to Reza's confusion.

In no time at all, Vlad returned holding Marticock, gurgling and farting. Pedro took his child from Florence and exchanged him for Marticock.

Reza frowned and shook her head, "no, no, no!"

Vlad and Pedro laughed as Reza and Florence ran into the bedroom to weep.

Vlad grinned as he removed the black child's diaper, "this is gonna be good! I never cornholed me a nigra before!"

In the Ghetto Part IV

Reza gazed into the bathroom mirror. The sense of despair overwhelmed her. Vlad's nightly visits to Marticock the Gurgling Penis Socket had been torturing her for weeks. She hadn't slept at all and it was beginning to show. The bags under her eyes were dark and full. Her eyes were red from constant crying. She even thought she could see some wrinkles appearing in her puffy face. She had to do something.

She opened the mirror to reveal a series of shelves. She found Vlad's razor and took it with her shaking hand. She closed the mirror again and stared deeply into her own eyes. Did she really want to do this? Was this the only way out of this mess? She heard the front door slam, followed by a loud belch and fart. Those three sounds that used to bring her so much comfort. She decided she must end it now.

In the living room of the double-wide, Vlad threw his empty Budweiser can onto the floor. He plunged his hand down the back of his pants to fish desperately for a ball of crust caught in his anal hairs that had been plaguing him all day. He moaned deeply as he plucked the nugget from his anus, taking along a few assorted hairs with it.

"Hey, bitch, where's my dinner?" Vlad screamed.

He heard a crashing sound in the bathroom, followed by a thud and a large splash.

"Fucking cunt," he spluttered.

Vlad trudged into the kitchen and liberated another Budweiser from the bottom shelf. He opened the can and drank half the contents, signifying his approval with an enormous belch. Suddenly, he heard more splashing and riff-raff in the bathroom. He wallowed across the room and into the hallway and opened the bathroom door.

Vlad was shocked. Reza was laying in the tub, completely bald. Not only were her legs hairless for the first time in years, but so were her armpits! The hair on her upper lip had been completely removed, as well as the ratty hair that covered her scalp. Vlad's mind reeled. How could she have managed to reach her legs with all of that lard in the way?

"Look, Vlad! I am Marticock!" Reza said with a hint of hope in her voice, "you can molest me now!"

Vlad farted, "Marticock?"

Reza nodded, "Ummmm-hmmmm!"

Vlad shook his head. He noticed the comforting gurgling sound in the room down the hall, "Marticock..."

Vlad turned and stumbled down the hallway to Marticock's room. He opened the creaking, paper-thin door, "daddy's home, Marticock! Open wide!"

Reza cried so hard that she deficated in the tub.

In the Ghetto Part V

Vlad farted.

It was a plump, furry fart with a long wet tail. Vlad couldn't tell if the vibration at the end of the fart was just particularly chaotic or if it had left a moist surprise for him. He reached down the back of his underwear to feel around and discovered some moistness on his underwear. He sniffed his fingers and his mouth watered at the unusual scent. He wiped his fingers dry using his t-shirt.

Vlad knew this would be a good day.

In the Ghetto Part VI

Vladinator's bulk took up most of the sidewalk as he waddled slowly towards his destination. Pedestrians jumped out of his way into oncoming traffic to avoid being trampled. Finally, panting heavily and with a river of sweat running from every gland, his three-block walk came to an end. He found what he had been searching for. He let out a satisfied fart as he looked at the sign:

Chicago Unemployment Office

Inside, a long line of vagrants and lost souls stood waiting in front of the counter. It smelled of piss and vomit. Scott Lockwood squeezed himself through the door, and the smell worsened tremendously.

Vlad looked at the dozens of people in line ahead of him, contemplating the long wait he faced before he could get his check. "No, this won't do," he thought. "This won't do at all." His face took on a grimace of deep concentration, followed by an intense sigh of relief.

It was silent, but deadly. One by one, his fellow unemployables screamed as they felt the burning in their lungs. Some began to retch. Within a minute, everyone had either fled in terror or lost consciousness. Vlad was now at the head of the line! "Much better," he thought to himself.

He waddled up to the counter and smiled a yellowish smile. Standing there was a cute teenage girl wearing a standard-issue gas mask. But Vlad had no interest in girls. "Give me mah check!"

"Your name please, sir?"

"William Scott Lockwood III. Hurry up, cunt!"

"One moment." The girl tapped buttons on her computer, and then frowned at Vlad. "I'm sorry, sir, but your Unemployment coverage has expired. It looks like you've made no effort to get a job for over two years, so we have to cut you off."

Vlad's face turned red with rage. He farted an angry fart. "WHAT?! I'll fucking kill you, bitch!" Vlad dropped into a sad parody of a martial arts stance. The sound of his pants ripping was followed immediately by another kind of ripping. The counter-girl's gas mask began to melt away.

She pushed a button, and a plexiglass barrier dropped between her and Vladinator. "I wouldn't try that, sir."

Vlad fell on his ass, exhaused from his attempt at moving his body. A farting sound was heard as he landed. He began to cry. "Why would you do this to me? Is it because I is black?"

"Pardon me, sir?"

"Whitey is just trying to keep the Black Man down! Everywhere I go, nobody gives me a chance, because of the color of my skin! A nigger just can't make it in the world today because of all the prejudice and bigotry!"

The girl looked at him with sympathy and concern. She pointed to a mirror on the wall next to Vlad. Vlad turned his head to look, and then screamed in terror at what he saw.

"WHITE! I'm white?! NOO!!"

The girl nodded.

Vlad continued to blubber, "you mean, the white man ISN'T keeping me from getting a job? The white man ISN'T keeping me from having a good life? All these years I thought..." He trailed off into incoherant sobbing and farting.

The girl shook her head sadly. "Mr. Lockwood, there IS a white man keeping you from having a good job and a good life. That white man is yourself."

Vlad felt shame as his bladder emptied into his pants, because he knew it was true.

In the Ghetto Part VII

Vladinator slowly waddled home smelling or urine and flatulence after his unsuccessful trip to the Chicago Unemployment Office. Tears and mucous ran down his face as he sobbed about the sad state of his life. Even knowing that baby Marticock would be there in a skimpy diaper waiting for him at home was no comfort now. He was miserable and he wanted to die.

Not wanting to go home and face his family without his unemployment check, he turned off the sidewalk into a narrow alley between two tall buildings. Then he realized he wouldn't fit through the alley, and went back to find another one that was wider. It grew dark as he walked through the forgotten back-alleys of Chicago's filthy slums.

Suddenly, Vlad heard a gun being cocked. A voice behind him barked out, "don't move or you're a dead man!"

Vlad saw that a homeless Negroid mugger had pointed a gun at him. "What do you want from me?" Vlad whined.

The homeless Negroid mugger responded, "You have two choices. Give me all your money, or I'm going to rape your ass. By the way, I have AIDS."

Vlad stammered, "B...but I don't have any money!"

"I guess I'm going to have to rape your ass, then," the homeless Negroid mugger replied sadly.

"Yes, well, I guess that's the only other choice, now isn't it," Vlad quickly replied.

"If that's how it has be... well, okay. I'm going to rape your ass now."

So he did.

Afterwards, when the homeless Negroid mugger had left, Vlad removed the large wad of money that he'd hidden between two rolls of his stomach that morning, and took a deep whiff of it.

"I am SO clever," thought Vlad.

In the Ghetto Part VIII

Vlad sat at the kitchen table finishing off a case of Budweiser. The metal table, with its peeling yellow paint comforted Vlad. He belched heartily as he admired his vinyl and plastic life in the double-wide. The only fly in Vlad's ointment was the elephantine woman who was cowering in the bedroom closet sobbing at Vlad's approaching Marticock Time.

As much beer as Vlad had consumed, he still could not alleviate the burning in his pants. His penis was chafed and red from its constant attacks upon Marticock's ass. Vlad loved the tightness of it, but it did have drawbacks. He shoved his hand down his unzipped pants and worked his hand around the layers of lard until he found his penis. He rubbed it carefully, sending thin rolls of dirt-encrusted skin flaking into his pubic hair. His penis burned intensely as he rubbed away the scabs to leave large areas of tender, pus-coated sores.

Vlad's penis twitched to attention as he manipulated it. Vlad downed the rest of his beer and tossed the can onto the living-room couch - the back seat of the Chevy van which was up on blocks in Vlad's front yard. It was Marticock Time. Vlad waddled to the refrigerator and fished out a tub of I Can't Believe It's Not Butter. He plunged his stiffened penis into the margarine, causing a thimble-sized indentation in the otherwise smooth yellow surface. Vlad massaged the margarine into his penis until it was nice and buttery.

Vlad belched, "Wake up Marticock! Here cums daddy!"

The mating call caused a spasm of nervousness to clench around Reza's bowel. She farted loudly as she quivered to each heavy thud of Vlad's footsteps. Her crying was matched only by the screaming of the molested Marticock.

In the Ghetto Part IX

Reza's face was cast in stark shadow. Marticock gurgled and drooled as she looked upon his paleness, lit only by the blue moonlight filtering through the window. Reza heard an enormous explosion in the bathroom and knew that Vlad would be there for a long while. She stared at the drooling Marticock with a grimace on her face. This was the first time that she actually looked upon her baby son with disdain. It was all Marticock's fault. She hadn't had sex since he came spilling from her substantial gut. Before Marticock, Vlad had treated her with respect, only beating her when she deserved it, and had made her feel like a real woman for the first time in her life.

Now, it seemed that all Vlad could do was drink beer, emit gasses and molest his son. He had even managed to land a job shoveling cow dung at the local slaughterhouse, only to get fired the next morning for being late - late because he spent too much time probing the tiny anus that lay before Reza. She frowned even more. How could it have come to this? For nine months, she had planned a wonderful life with her husband and their child. The reality was quite different.

A small, thin stream of gas escaped from Marticock's anus. Marticock's flatulence was a point of pride for Vlad and he often enjoyed a burst of cool gas on his penis while molesting his son. But the spurt of noise only reminded Reza of the times before Marticock. When Vlad would violate her as no other man could, with his farts causing him to vibrate like an electric dildo. That was the last straw for Reza. She let her robe slip from her body as she undressed Marticock.

Vlad squeezed out the last few drops of liquified feces from his gut. Satisfied that he had completely expunged the wastes that lurked within, he reached around the back of the toilet for the golf club. He wrapped a thick mass of toilet paper around the club and squatted on the floor, using the club to wipe his ass - the only way he could reach himself through the vast rolls of lard.

Vlad pulled his yellowed t-shirt down over his waist and headed for the nursery. Nothing crowned a relaxing defecation like a visit to Marticock. He quickly opened the door to Marticock's room and flipped on the light. Vlad farted in shock at the sight before him.

Reza was squatting on the floor, her paper-white ass cheeks protruding like two enormous dumplings, pocked and wrinkled and bursting with cellulite. Marticock was hanging from her vagina, his head fully wrapped in the rancid lips, which were stretched so wide that they had begun to tear. Blood and pus oozed from the yeast-infected vagina all over Marticock's body. Vlad stared, his mouth agape, as Reza held Marticock's legs and shoved him, as hard as she could, back into her womb.

As Reza shoved on Marticock, his legs spread apart, causing his anus to be plainly visible. Vlad grew excited and could not control his desire for little Marticock. Vlad ran over to Reza and shoved his scabbed penis into Marticock's anus. With each violent thrust, Marticock was shoved further into the mounds of disgusting lard. Vlad licked Reza's blood and pus from Marticock as he ejaculated a few spurts of semen onto his own pot-belly.

All of the commotion had caused Reza to become extremely excited and she exploded with an orgasm - an orgasm that had been months in the making. The force of the release caused Marticock to shoot back out from her vagina. Reza fell backward onto Vlad and the three Cockwoods lay in a giant, pale heap on the floor, farting with satisfaction.

In the Ghetto Part X

The orange vinyl of the couch stuck to Vlad's pale, massive leg as he guzzled another beer. Vlad had "made" the couch from the back seat of his Chevy van after the bank had repossessed most of his belongings. The seat was not needed on the van anyway, since it had been up on blocks in the front yard for the better part of a year. Vlad farted and enjoyed the unique sound of the vinyl flapping against his fattened leg due to the vibration of the escaping gasses. The couch was the only seating in the living room of the double-wide and so Reza was usually consigned to the floor. Vlad never let her sit next to him, claiming that his massive gut "needed to breathe".

Reza sat on the stained yellow carpet wearing a see-through purple gown. She sat with her legs spread open, exposing her red, infected vagina. The massive flaps of flesh that were her labia hung from her crotch and melted into a heap on the floor, still stretched and bruised from her attempt to reinsert Marticock into her womb. Various milky and pungent substances oozed from the massive black hole onto the floor to create a sticky white puddle. Carter, the Lockwood's dog, mosied over to the puddle and lapped it up as Reza belched up a portion of the evening's meal.

Vlad dug his fingernails deep into the flesh surrounding his anus and scratched heartily, oblivious to the tiny details of Lockwood life that were playing out around him. His meditations were, however, interrupted by a banging on the loosened screen door of the double-wide. A pang of excitement shot through Vlad's bowel and expressed itself as a thunderous burst of flatulence. He tried to leap up from the couch, but the hold of gravity upon his massive body slowed him significantly. Eventually Vlad made it to his feet and trudged to the door. He opened it to an extremely large man, with a flabby gut hanging all the way down to his knees.

"Poppa!"

"Hey, Vladdie," the gruff voice chortled, "give me some sugar, son..."

Vlad melted into the massive, hairy arms and inhaled deeply to savor the comforting scent of week-old sweat. Poppa rubbed Vlad's back with his dirt- encrusted hands, massaging his way down to Vlad's butt. He took one cheek in each hand and squeezed passionately. Vlad moaned with pleasure and placed his lips firmly on his father's. Vlad partially opened his mouth, and stuck his tongue out, past his missing teeth and into his fathers mouth.

Vlad could taste the residue of tobacco his father had been chewing and this excited him even more. He moved his hands down his father's back and into the back of his pants. Vlad carressed his father's bare ass, exploring each pock and wrinkle with his fingers and massaging his anus. Vlad's penis swiftly snapped to its full 1 inch of attention as he explored the moist, tight anus of his father.

"Vlad! What about me, damnit, " Reza screamed.

Vlad pulled away from his father and shook his head, "oh yeah, follow me, Poppa."

Reza smiled with a glimmer of hope which was quickly smothered as Vlad walked uncaringly past her, followed by Poppa. Reza began to sob uncontrollably then screamed loudly as Poppa stepped on her bruised labia. She rolled over onto her massive stomach and cried and screamed as she pounded the dirty floor of the double-wide.

Vlad motioned his father to Marticock's room, "I figure we can start out with me in Marticock's ass and you in mine," Vlad said eagerly.

"Now wait a minute, son! I want a piece of that tight little ass too!"

Vlad's eyes brightened with hope, "does that mean you're gonna let me in the back door this time, Poppa?"

Poppa smiled and patted Vlad on the back, "you betcha, son. I've been lookin' forward to this for a loooong time. Three generations of Lockwood, doin' it the Lockwood way!"

Vlad farted with excitement.

In the Ghetto, Chapters 21-25 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576494)

In the Ghetto Part XXI

Vlad had surgeoned the carburetor of the Chevy van with a degree of incompetence befitting a Lockwood. The van shook as it inched down the street; every few minutes, the exhaust manifold would flood with pure gas and react with a massive backfire. The van would then stall a moment and then lurch forward with a great burst of speed. This behavior seemed normal to Vlad, who had grown up believing that any healthy system must emit gas nearly constantly. The van was simply farting in the tradition of any normal "healthy" Lockwood.

As the van lurched and shook, the imitation-gold medallion Vlad had hung from the rear-view mirror would swing wildly and knock him in the head. Vlad paid no attention, as he sang along with the eminem 8-track that was blasting at full volume. Onlookers pointed and laughed as the primer-colored van shimmied past them, with it's ridiculous driver singing and moving his head in rythm to the music that spoke so sweetly to the angry teen within.

Marticock wailed each time he was tossed about in the passenger seat. Each jerk of the van would throw Marticock against the door and loosen a pocket of gas. The burning methane would irritate his infected, gangrened rectum, causing him to scream out in agony. His face was red and his eyes were glassy from tears. A constant stream of bloodied pus oozed into his diaper. Marticock was only eight months old, but he was already developing a characteristic Lockwood beer gut. His stomach bounced and jiggled with the surging of the van and his tiny penis twitched in time with the music blaring from the speakers.

The power steering mechanism of the van was one of the many casualties of the jolted engine and Vlad struggled to turn the vehicle to the left. He barely managed to get the wheels turned in time and the sides of the wheels scraped the curb to the right, sending two hubcaps flying out at unsuspecting pedestrians. Vlad panted and sweat rolled down his face from the effort put into turning the steering wheel. Vlad floored the breaks and the vehicle slowly stopped in front of a sleazy-looking shop.

Vlad grabbed Marticock and lumbered into Priscilla's Sex Shop. Slowly, he waddled up to the counter and sat Marticock - dressed only in his skimpy diaper - onto the sticky floor. A rather robust woman was standing behind the counter, she forced a smile in greeting, "hi there... what can I do for you today?"

Vlad paused a moment to drool and remember the list of items he had come to purchase, "uhhhh. Let's see. Okay. I want a 12-inch Slim John, an extra-wide Smiling Joe, a pound of Love Balls. I need a Butt Beaver with extra fur. Uhhhh...."

Marticock gurgled as he played with some lint he found on the floor.

"Oh yeah, I need a glossy black leather ghimp suit."

The sales-lady was unphased by the list, having worked at Priscilla's for ten years, "What size would you like that ghimp suit?"

Vlad looked down at the gurgling Marticock and realized he didn't know what size to request. He bent over and grabbed Marticock by the back of his diaper. He lifted Marticock up for the sales lady. "This size," he panted.

As Marticock hung over the counter, a glop of bloody pus plopped out of his diaper and spattered on the counter. Vlad stared at the ooze for a moment and farted, "Oh yeah, and do you sell Vagisil?"

The sales lady disappeared into the dank shadows of the sex shop and returned with a large bag stuffed with goodies. Vlad drooled as he imagined the various uses to which he would put these wonderous space-aged products.

The lady expertly punched several keys on the cash register and derived a total, "that will be 128 dollars and 64 cents, sir, will that be cash, check or charge?"

Vlad farted, "food stamps".

In the Ghetto Part XXII

Vlad couldn't believe that the Welfare Department and Social Services were forcing him to go find a job. El-Arse hosting would soon have a paying customer and he would soon be the next Bill Gates. Vlad rubbed his half inch pecker as he imagined ruling the world from his Joliet compound. Vlad's daydreaming was shattered by a foundation rattling fart that emanated from the bedroom. Reza was waking up from her pig tranquilizer and Mad Dog 20/20 induced slumber. She appeared in the doorway, her massive fatness filling the opening. She made a beeline to the fridge. While waddling towards her food source, a large black butt plug fell from beneath her mu-mu. It slid across the floor and stopped in front of Marticock. Marti was still phased from the roofies Vlad had forced him to snort the night before. And it took a few moments for the drug ravaged brain to realize it's favorite teething toy was available. Marti shoved it in his mouth and let out a wet, happy fart. Vlad smiled, he was just like his old man. But, his pride quickly turned to rage.

"Damn you, you fat fucking cow of a woman," Vlad yelled. "You know this is to never come out, except for when I allow you to remove it!" Vlad got his body to contort into some abomination of a karate stance he saw on his cam copy of Blade2 and knocked Reza on to her gut. Reza rocked back and forth as Vlad maneuvered around to her ass. Vlad took aim with the butt plug and rammed it home. Reza moaned and Vlad got hard. Vlad was hung like a doorbell and he was full aroused. Reza couldn't touch the floor with any of her pork filled appendages. She looked on helplessly as Vlad grabbed Marticock. Marticock cooed with glee as Vlad coated his head with cold cooking grease from the stove top. In one fell swoop, Marticock was shoved headfirst into Reza's flabby cunt. This was quickly followed by Vlad ramming the whole inch of his manhood into Marticock's fudge flavored love tunnel. Reza and Vlad moaned as the three of them oscillated to Vlad's gyrations. From the bubbles that would erupt from Reza's cooch, Marticock was enjoying himself as well. Vlad finished and started to leave. Marticock oozed out of him mother's sloppy snatch and landed on the floor with a thud. Vlad grabbed a greasy towel from the floor and snatched Marticock up. Reza let out a satisfied fart and Vlad replied with one of his own. "I love you, Vlad," Reza said through an orgasmic haze. "Shut the fuck up, you fat fucking whore," Vlad snapped back as he slammed the door.

An hour later, Vlad is in the front lobby of the County Employment Office. He lugs himself up to the desk. A young woman sits behind the desk; she turns pale as she sees Vlad approach. "You have to give me a fucking job, bitch," Vlad farted with authority. The lady didn't even look up. She just pointed to a big wall full of listings. Vlad waddled back and started looking. All these jobs are for chumps Vlad thought to himself as he looked at the jobs that were available.

"I own my own business," Vlad said aloud. "Welcome to /dev/nul fucking losers." And, with that, Vlad turned to leave. But, 3 unemployed steel workers overheard Vlad's disparaging comments. "Who are you calling a loser, fatboi," one of them said. Vlad's defense mechanism started up and a protective fart erupted from his stained sweatpants. "Get the fuck out of here you stinky fat ball," another one said. Vlad wasn't' going to take this abuse.

"Back the fuck up," Vlad yelled. "Have you ever seen the Michael Jackson interview with Barbra Walters? That's the kind of karate I practice. You are going to get a free lesson." Vlad grabbed Marticock and started wildly swinging him about his head. Marti giggled as Vlad made grunting noises and kicked with his stumpy legs at anything he perceived to be a threat. Vlad backed out of the front door, still swinging Marticock at his opponents. Upon exiting the building, Vlad started his walk home. He reached his neighborhood. Ten dollar whores lined the corners. They laughed as Vlad walked past. But, the it would be Vlad who would be laughing in the end. Vlad had found a new 'job', except the job was for Marticock. Vlad ripped Marticock's filth riddled diaper off, exposing his well worn anus. "Five dollars a pop!" Vlad yelled at the top of his lungs holding Marticock out for all to see. Vlad let a content fart, knowing that he would be able eat, thanks to Marticock's talented ass.

In the Ghetto Part XXIII

The cave was dark but warm. The floor was covered with a steaming liquid, an acid, that was prevented from eating into the structure of the cave by a coating of thick slime. The cave was rich with a foul stench. Various liquids streamed from random openings in the cave walls, which bubbled with slime. Along the walls and floor of the cave, a huge colony of creatures huddled together, feeding on the slime coating and various other decaying substances which were piled on the floor of the cave.

The creatures were nothing more than gelatinous blobs and they emitted a rich, toxic gas as a by-product of their feeding. They too were protected from the acidic atmosphere of the cave by their slime-covered "skin". The gaseous excrement was heavier than air and hung low along the cave floor. The acidic gasses that composed the atmosphere of the cave would bind with the excrement and produce a gas that was far deadlier than the excrement alone.

At random times, large chunks of material would fall from the sky and plop onto the cave floor. The creatures would scramble to the new food-source while the disturbance caused waves in the atmosphere that sent the toxic excrement/atmosphere gasses flowing toward a large hole in the floor.

The hole led to a large tunnel that seemed to go on forever. The walls of the tunnel were lined with branching structures, like tree-limbs, that sampled whatever happened to be passing by. The gasses were analyzed and cataloged and rejected. Some of the tendrils were killed by the lethal gasses.

The gasses flowed down the tunnel like rushing water, carrying various particles along with them. The particles would eventually slam into the walls of the tunnel and stick to the slime coating where they would be dissolved and absorbed.

Further down the tunnel, was a small opening... a light. The gasses flooded toward it. The opening was so small, that the gasses slammed into an enormous ball as they tried to push through the opening. The ball grew in size, creating more and more pressure on the opening. Finally, it gave way and the gasses escaped with an enormous, explosive burst.

Vlad farted.

In the Ghetto Part XXIV

Vlad strained. He took a deep breath and held it as he pushed harder than he ever had in his life. The veins in his forehead bulged and throbbed; his gut clenched; his anus puckered. A pocket of gas escaped from his constricted rectum, signifying a loosening somewhere in his bowel. The sweat rolled off of Vlads face and stained his sleeveless, v-neck t-shirt. Vlad's body shook as a giant length of feces slowly emerged from his anus. The feces was wide and solid and the surfaces scraped against his rectum as it moved slowly along. It seemed the thing would never finally come all the way out but it did, eventually. Vlad exhaled and his body relaxed as the cool, urine-tainted water of the toilet splashed against his sweating buttocks.

Vlad felt such a sense of achievement, he decided he must preserve this wonder of Nature that he had just expelled from his voluminous body. He reached into the toilet and rescued the turd from its ultimate fate. Carefully, he dried it off with a wad of toilet paper. The turd was a foot long, at least, and a full 4 inches thick. He cradled it in his arms as he looked upon it with admiration. Vlad sighed and flushed the toilet. He wondered how he would get through the weekend, since Reza had sent Marticock to stay with his grandparents. Vlad was already feeling anxious after spending an hour on the toilet. He heard a loud ripping noise coming from the bedroom. It was Reza practicing her farting exercises.

Reza had been looking for ways to bring her closer to her beloved. Ever since little Marticock had come along, her sex-life had taken a nose-dive. Reza watched with jealousy every time Marticock would fart and Vlad would beam with pride, then become aroused as he realized where the fart had come from. She had decided that if she could fart as well as Marticock, Vlad would want to ravage her enormous body the way he used to. She squeezed her colon with determination, forcing out another small bubble of gas, followed by a plop of warm fluid, "oh! Vlad would like that," she thought.

Reza heard the toilet flush - what opportune timing! "Oh, Vladdie-Pop! Come here!"

Vlad sighed and rolled his eyes. Why wouldn't that disgusting cow leave him alone? He trodded into the bedroom, "what now, fat- ass?"

Reza, sitting on the bed naked, held up her panties, which were large enough to use as a blanket for most people, "look!"

Vlad could see the large spot of wetness where Reza's asshole had vomited into the garment. Vlad became aroused. He sleazed over to the bed and threw off his stained shirt. Reza laid back in the bed, with a satisfied smile on her face. Her body oozed out to drip over the sides of the bed.

Vlad shed his briefs and prepared to dive into the whale that lay waiting for him. He shivered. Thoughts of Marticock's tight little butt and skimpy diaper overwhelmed him. Vlad could not bring himself to touch a woman ever again. Even if that woman was a disgusting tub of sweating lard. Vlad had to do something, he had to think fast. Then... he remembered the trophy he had in his hand.

Vlad shoved the turd into Reza's sloppy wet vagina. He plunged it in and out with ever-increasing speed and force. Reza moaned with delight. It had been so long! She didn't remember Vlad's penis being so large, "oh Vlad, I have been waiting for this moment for eight months. God, you've gotten so big!"

Vlad farted with relief that he had found a way to deflect Reza's advances. He moved the turd around in her vagina like he was stirring up a batch of fat for breakfast. It didn't take long for Reza to explode in a massive orgasm, which sent chucks of shit flying all over Vlad's pale body.

Vlad's face grew red with rage, "You fat fucking hog! You killed my turd!" Vlad took what was left of the feces and smacked Reza in the face with it. The turd broke in two and Vlad became even more angry and started punching Reza in the gut, "I'll teach you, you fat whale! My turd! MY TURD! MY FUCKING TURD!"

That night, bruised, bloodied and covered with feces, Reza cried herself to sleep.

In the Ghetto Part XXV

Vlad let out a triumphant fart through his shit stained drawers. He wasn't going to put up with any shit from those meanies on the net. "Let's see what those fuckers think of THAT," Vlad belched. Reza oozed into the room. The foundation of their hovel had collapsed from lack or repair, plus the foundation was only rated for industrial equipment and stamping machines, not the Lockwoods. With the floor boards on the dirt, Reza was all but silent as she seemed to glide across the floor. Her hanging fat rolls and repulsively fat body made her look like a cross between a slug and a hovercraft. "Oh, your not uploading pictures of Marti to alt.sex.binaries.fucked.with.a.baby again, are you? You promised, Vl..." Reza started to say, but was cut short by an alarmed fart from Vlad's lard filled ass and a backhand from Vlads stubby, pork-pie hand.

"No, you dumb jizz soaked cunt," Vlad said. "I just told all the mean people that pick on me that I will kick their asses if they come up to me. I let them all know that, if they have seen Blade or Blade 2, that is the kind of Kung Foo I practice. Like this!" Vlad swung the cattle restraining harness that he used as an office chair around and let the kinetic energy of his spheroid body propel him forward. Being an incompetent fat fuck, Vlad crashes to the floor, but not before taking out Reza and half of her prized collection of impacted fecal matter. Vlad was going to yell at Reza for making him mess up his landing, but there was a knock at the door.

Vlad swung the door open. There stood a tall man, with strong broad shoulders. A deep husky voice came from the tall man, "I read your post. Here I am." Upon looking at and hearing the voice of the tall man, Reza orgasmed and began to search for her clit. Marticock let out a tormented scream, like a devil would make when exposed to holy water. Marticock wailed and writhed in agony as the goodness that emanated from the tall man washed over his depraved and diseased body.

"Motherfucker," Vlad squealed. "You ever see Breakdancin' 2: Electric Boogaloo? That's the ki..." Vlad was stopped by a mighty blow to the face from the tall man. With Vlad's Weeble-Wobble shape, he simply rocked all the way back, only to be propelled back up right. As soon as he was back up right, he was met with yet another blow which would start the process all over again. But, since Vlad had passed out from fright at the sight of the first incoming blow, he was unaware of all of this. As Reza came out of her orgasmic haze, she saw the tall man leave. She was so saddened by his departure, she shit her self with self pity when she realized Vlad was still breathing.

Marticock let out a fart of relief.

In the Ghetto, Chapters 26-30 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576527)

In the Ghetto Part XXVI

Vlad, for the first time in quite a while, was alone in the house. A couple of days before Reza had complained of cramping in her lower abdomen and they realized that she was constipated again. They quickly hurried her massive bulk onto the back of a super-semi and shipped her off to the Nevada Test Site. There she would receive her annual metamucil treatment and the compacted toxic substances be disposed of in the only place on Earth more polluted than the Lockwood house. Only when they had shipped her out did he realize that Marticock must have somehow slipped between the folds of flab on her obese frame and had gone with her. Now he was lost, alone, and looking for amusement.

He had considered phoning for a hooker, but you needed money for that. Twenty bucks would break him, and they didn't take beer bottles. Besides, the hookers were mostly women, and the last time he had one he couldn't get the sound of laughter out of his head for days.

Vlad let off a massive fart and small amounts of brown, fluid fecal matter dripped out of his ass and onto the floor. As he moved forward he stepped on the various cheetos, pretzels and shit that he hadn't bothered to clean up. He scratched his anus as the fart had irritated his hemmorhoids yet again. His arm strained to get his hand back there and he pulled a muscle. In agony he pulled his arm back and collapsed to the floor in a massive flaccid heap.

A thousand miles away, a seismic sensor activated at Vlad's dropping to the floor. Later on CNN it was reported that a 4.5 earthquake had shaken Joliet.

Vlad grunted as he pulled himself up and made his way to the computer. Even though it was only ten feet away, it was a herculean effort. And his ass still itched. "Goddamnit..." he belched as he said it "...fucking AV3. This is their fault."

He pushed aside the used Fritos bags and beer bottles that had accumulated around his 'Work Station'. As he was about to logon to Kuro5hin the doorbell suddenly rang. He waddled over to the door and opened it. It was his neighbor. He was a gigantic man, but unlike Vlad all his mass was muscle and not billowing waves of fat. He took a puff of his Marlboro and blew it in Vlad's face. It didn't affect Vlad at all, as he was used to both his and Reza's own toxic gases.

"Lockwood, did you fuckin' fall on the floor again? This is the third time this month I've had to replace all my fuckin' dishes because you keep on trippin' on your fat ass!"

"I own a business, go fuck yourself! Welcome to /dev/null." It was the only thing Vlad could think of. His mind had atrophied to the point where the words had become automatic.

"What the fuck did you just say to me you fat piece of shit?" The man's hand slammed into Vlad and he went tumbling backwards.

"Just wait'll I get up. Have you seen Love Story? That's the kind of martial arts I practice!"

The man stood over Vlad and was about to ram his foot his Vlad's ass when Vlad farted. The sudden expulsion of gas engulfed the man and he started to choke. But even worse, his cigarette ignited the foul odor. Suddenly, the man was engulfed a ball of flame and he went screaming out the door. The force of the blast went all the way up into Vlad's anus and sent him rocketing across the room where he slammed head first in the wall. The entire house shuddered and collapsed around him.

In the wreckage Vlad smiled. The pain from the impact had shaken loose his 1/2" cock and he had cum spontaneously. He looked proudly down at the tiny pool of semen on the ground. He at last had found a way to amuse himself.

And his ass had stopped itching too.

In the Ghetto Part XXVII

Anal Faggotry at Garnsey Park

Vlad was angry. Vlad was mad. Vlad was furious. Vlad farted.

"Those LITTLE BITCHES on the Internet are really starting to get to me," Vlad silently admitted to himself. "Who the fuck made THEM judge & jury? After all the times I helped and supported their asses."

Vlad began to cry. He picked up a pair of his underwear from the floor and wiped away the tears from his eyes and the sweat from his brow. The underwear left a brown stain across his face, but he didn't care. He was sweating because he'd been trying to work out his frustrations by practicing his knife-fighting technique. A bloody, rusted butter-knife lay on the floor, and next to it lay Reza, unconscious or worse, oozing blood and fatty tissue into puddles on the floor. A swarm of roaches surrounded and covered her, licking up the fat from the floor and crawling into her wounds to extract it directly.

"Reeeeeza", Vlad shouted nasally at his wife. He wasn't sure if she was alive or dead, and he didn't really care. "I have to get out of this fucking house. I'm going to the park!" Vlad's heart lifted briefly from his self-pity. The park. At night. This would be a good night.

The Chevy van squeaked and groaned under Vlad's weight as he squeezed himself through the door. The front tire ruptured and deflated. After a few minutes of cranking, the van started with the sound of a gunshot, and it creaked slowly out onto Ingalls Avenue, heading west.

As Vlad passed the Nicholson Street intersection, he thought bitterly about his troubles online, and how nearly everyone he knew had "betrayed" him. Those little bitches. But by the time he passed the Highland Avenue intersection, his thoughts had already turned to more pleasant matters: his first visit to Garnsey Park, nearly a year ago, where he had met his Special Friend. He felt a warm twitching in his groin. Vlad drove on.

As Vlad passed Clement Street, he thought back to that magical day. Vlad's soon-to-be "Special Friend" had been on vacation from Peaks Island, Maine, and was "slumming" in Joliet to check out the local gay scene. After visiting a few clubs, the Special Friend had found his way to Garnsey Park, a popular meeting place for nocturnal homosexual public couplings, visited by faggots from all over the greater Chicago metropolitan area. When the Special Friend arrived, there was another queer at the park for the first time: he'd just recently moved to the area, and his large body was filled with homosexual vim vigour. His name was William Scott Lockwood III, but at Garnsey Park, he was only "Vladinator."

Vlad farted in contentment as he reminisced. Not paying attention, he slammed into a young girl riding a bicycle through the Oakland Avenue intersection. The bike tangled in the guts of the Chevy van, and it whined in protest, but it continued to sputter onward as Vlad continued to remember. On Vlad's first visit to Garnsey Park, he wasn't wholly satisfied with the quality of the corn-holing he was getting. The assortment of Negroids, vagrants, crack addicts, and transvestites was large, but none of them really stood to him. They were all happy to meet such an outstanding "papa bear" like Vlad, and they loved to wrap their arms around his hairy rolls of loving flab as he grunted and rammed his cock into their colons. But Vlad had wanted more. He wanted romance. Then his soon-to-be Special Friend arrived.

Vlad was so distracted by his sudden erection that he swerved wildly for a moment, tearing down the street sign marking the intersection of Ingalls and Wilcox. He barely noticed. When Vlad saw the Special Friend arrive, he knew that he'd found a soul-mate. The Special Friend was young and had gentle blonde hair, and charming facial features like a delightfully protruding chin. He looked soft, loving, pale, and incredibly gay. Vlad immediately pulled out of the warty Negroid buttocks he'd been slamming, and ran over to greet the new arrival. Their romance was brief, but intense. It was the best faggotry of Vlad's life.

At the Raynor Avenue intersection, the deflated front tire of the Chevy van entered a shallow pothole, and refused to move any further. Vlad farted with frustration, but he wouldn't be swayed from his task. He was going to get some ass tonight, even if he had to do the one thing that he hated to do more than anything else in the world.

Vlad walked. Behind him, the night was illuminated as the van burst into flame. As he lumbered north on Raynor Avenue, he thought back once again to that magical time of his life. The Special Friend stayed in Joliet for nearly a week, spending every waking moment with Vlad. They made love in every way possible, and the Special Friend even gave Reza a try (who was very pregnant at the time and quite gigantic), but decided that nobody could satisfy him the way Vlad did. Sadly, the Special Friend eventually had to return to Peaks Island, Maine. He'd been able to finance his vacation to Chicago by running a huge donation scam on the Internet, but he'd already spent most of the $37,000 on crack. Plus, he had to go back to Maine and bring his weblog back up: he couldn't bear the thought that troublemakers might be posting to it without him being around to censor them, so he'd unplugged the server when he left and blamed it on a DDoS attack. Vlad was sad to see his Special Friend go. Although Vlad knew he'd probably never see his Special Friend again, they sealed their relationship with the most sacred of faggot oaths: they ejaculated into their hands, then pressed their palms against the other's, mixing their semen together as they swore to love each other as long as they both should live.

As Vlad reached the corner of Raynor and Curtis Avenue, Garnsey Park drew into sight. His mind flooded with memories again. Vlad had gone back to Garney Park many times since then. He enjoyed the faggotry there, and enjoyed taking it from three Negroids at once as he frequently did, but he always missed the Special Friend and his tight little white asshole.

Vlad walked into the park, and saw the familiar sight of dark shapes moving between the shadows of trees. He grinned and walk towards the shape. But as they came into focus, one of them stood out from the crowd of fornicating faggots. Could it be? No... yes! His hair was no longer blonde, and he looked a bit more cynical and world-weary, and his nude body was covered almost entirely in shit, but it was clearly him!

Vlad's penis sprang forward in anticipation, and the rest of him was not far behind. He ran forward to embrace his Special Friend.

"I thought I'd never see you again."

"I came back, for you. I couldn't live without you."

"Never leave me again. You're the only man for me."

"I'll never leave. I want to eat every bit of waste that passes from your body for the rest of my life." He began to cry with joy.

"Eat it, then. Eat it all. It's yours." Vlad turned around and relaxed his bowels. A flood of liquid feces spurted out all over the legs of his Special Friend.

Vlad laughed. His Special Friend laughed, and bent down to lick Vlad's feces off of his own legs.

They farted in unison.

In the Ghetto Part XXVIII

Vlad unwrapped Marticock's diaper. He was hot and bothered and he wanted a piece of that tight little ass. Vlad farted with dismay at the sight that lay before him. Marticock's bottom was a rocky landscape of infected protrusions that expelled various toxins like small gurgling volcanoes. The pus had congealed and epoxied Marticock's anus shut. Vlad plugged in his Craftsman drill and inserted a 1/4" bit. He pressed the trigger and shoved the spinning bit into Marticock's anus. Dried pus and necrotic flesh flew out of the tiny hole.

Vlad probed the opening with his finger. It was sticky and an unholy stench wafted from the open sores. Vlad knew he wouldn't be getting any of that tight little ass tonight. He opened the bottle of Vagisil he purchased at Prescilla's and stuck the nozzle into Marticock's rectum. He squeezed out a large glop of the medicine and massaged it into Marticock's asshole. Marticock wailed as his puffy red anus swelled even more.

Vlad needed to get off. He looked around Marticock's chamber for ideas and noticed Marticock drooling. Maybe a blow-job was in order? Vlad pulled down his stained underwear and shoved his thimble-sized penis into the toothless mouth. Vlad thrust a couple of times and then pulled away with disatisfaction. It just wasn't the same. Marticock's mouth was warm and mushy, Vlad liked that, but it was just too loose.

Marticock farted and ejected a spurt of bloodied infection onto Vlad's face. Vlad wiped away the fluid with his shirt. Some had gotten into his eye... his eye... "now that might work," Vlad farted!

Vlad took the bit out of the Craftsman drill and plunged it into Marticock's eye. He swirled the bit around enough to thoroughly gouge out the eye tissue and scooped out the torn flesh with his finger. He squirted some vagisil into the eye socket as Marticock screamed and farted. Vlad plunged his penis into the eye socket. Now that was more like it! With a few quick thrusts, Vlad reached orgasm and shot a few spurts of semen onto Marticock's face. He massaged the white fluid into Marticock's scalp.

Vlad farted with relief. Marticock was turning out to be an innovative sex toy, indeed.

In the Ghetto Part XXIX

Marticock's birth was a monumental moment for Reza. Her rolls of fat, pale flesh made it impossible for any doctor to pull Marticock out normally. They had to "go in". Vlad's unemployment and resulting lack of insurance left the Lockwoods with only one choice for natal care - a dirty, feces littered back- alley where a mob doctor practiced ever since a malpractice suit took away his license. Vlad didn't care. All the doctor had to do was cut open that whale and fish out Marticock, then sew her back up. Marine biologists - stoned college hippies - did it all the time with whales and sharks.

But Reza's physique was a major unforeseen complication. The oozing shelves of fat constantly spilled into any cuts the "doctor" would make. After several hours, he disconnected Marticock and fished him out of the sweating sack of shit. He gave up trying to sew up Reza's innards properly and just stapled her abdomen shut, leaving a large gaping hole from Reza's womb into the surrounding lard.

Vlad stood at the stove, "hey, Porky, I'm frying some potatoes, get your fat ass in here!"

Reza farted with apprehension. She knew what that meant. "But, Vladdie-Pop..."

"I said now!" Vlad farted.

Reza wallowed into the kitchen, sweating and panting from the 5-foot walk. She shut her eyes tightly and put her hands over her face as she sobbed uncontrollably.

Vlad grabbed a baseball bat that was leaning against the wall. He gripped the bat and swung it around with full-force into Reza's massive gut. He then quickly grabbed the frying pan, filled with potatoes and pulled down Reza's panties. He held the pan under her vagina. Vlad drooled as he watched the gooey chunks of lard drip out of Reza's vagina and into the frying pan. After the last few drops of lard plopped into the pan, Vlad swung Reza around and kicked her massive rear, "now get the fuck out of my face, pig."

Vlad fried up the potatoes, drooling and farting with anticipation.

In the Ghetto Part XXX

Vlad farted, twitched, then farted again. He flicked the syringe with his middle finger, causing a flurry of small bubbles to rise to the top and burst. Carefully, Vlad inserted the needle into his urethra. The sting dislodged a pocket of gas that had been lurking deep within his bowel. Carefully, Vlad pressed in on the plunger of the syringe. His leg shook wildly as the clear, cold liquid filled his urethra. Vlad carefully removed the syringe and laid it on Marticock's changing table.

Vlad looked down at Marticock's naked, glistening body and smiled slyly. He grabbed Marticock by the legs and lifted him up to his waist. Desperately, Vlad plunged his penis into Marticock's tight farting asshole. All it took was a couple of thrusts and Vlad reached orgasm. The semen rushed from his raisin-sized testicles and entered his penis, mixing with the testosterone he had just injected into his urethra. Vlad ejaculated his testosterone-laced load deep into Marticock's bowel, where it was absorbed like an essential nutrient.

Vlad laid Marticock back in his crib and admired his handiwork. He had been administering the testosterone injections for several months and the results were far better than Vlad had expected. Marticock already had a full thick crop of chest and pubic hair. His penis and testicles were far above average in size, even for a full-grown man. Vlad stroked Marticock's hairy scrotum with pride. Marticock gurgled and farted with pleasure. Vlad wafted his hand under his nose, savoring the rich scent of sweaty Marticock testicles.

Vlad knew he would have to break in Marticock's new genitalia tonight. Earlier in the evening, he had made sure Reza was in the mood for love by giving her a few pokes with the cattle prod. His back crawled at the thought of her cold, sweating flesh waiting for him in the bedroom, but it was a sacrifice he would have to make. For Marticock.

Vlad grabbed the belt that was laying on the floor and affixed it loosely around his waist. He picked up Marticock and shoved him against his massive gut, then tightened the belt around him. Marticock was strapped in tightly and positioned so that his massive penis throbbed and oozed as though it were Vlad's very own. Vlad waddled into the darkened bedroom, with Marticock burping and slobbering.

Reza's vagina twitched at the sounds of Vlad farting his way over to the bed. Her body shook with anticipation. Vlad wasted no time. He dumped himself into the bed and mounted Reza, carefully positioning Marticock so that he penetrated his massive mother. Reza groaned loudly, sounding much like a wounded moose.

As Vlad thrust faster and harder, Reza moaned louder. Her gaping, slobbering vagina farted in harmony with Vlad. Marticock giggled and belched. Vlad's penis managed to slip naturally into Marticock's anus. In moments, Vlad felt a thrust against his own eraser-sized penis. Marticock made a sound like a squirt-gun being fired as he ejaculated a cupful of semen into his own mother. The process caused Vlad to cum into Marticock once again.

Sweating and panting, Vlad collapsed. He laid there in the same position for an hour, twitching and farting as Reza's vagina oozed a constant stream of infection and ejaculate onto him.

Superb (4, Interesting)

kalidasa (577403) | about 10 years ago | (#10576529)

The best interview with a writer I've read in a long time. I have never read any of Stephenson's books (only "In the Beginning was the Command Line"), but will run out and buy the three Baroque cycle books.

Re:Superb (4, Funny)

ideatrack (702667) | about 10 years ago | (#10576666)

will run out and buy the three Baroque cycle books

Run? I thought people who read Slashdot more sort of...waddled...

Re:Superb (5, Funny)

Have Blue (616) | about 10 years ago | (#10576929)

By "run out" he means "Open a new browser window and type 'amazon'".

Re:Superb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576696)

Get cryptonomicon first.

Re:Superb (4, Interesting)

Txiasaeia (581598) | about 10 years ago | (#10576739)

With respect to Mr. Stephenson, you might do better to find a copy of _Snow Crash_. Not that the Baroque cycle isn't entertaining, but Snow Crash is far, far superior.

Re:Superb (1)

FuzzzyLogik (592766) | about 10 years ago | (#10576841)

not to mention the uh... encyclopedia like volumes each of the trilogy books compare to. i think it's like 2400 pages all together. unless you've got a lot of time on your hands pick something smaller :) i have all 3 books myself but haven't picked them up to read yet, waiting for the semester to get over with before i start running into those books, i'd like to avoid them without long interuptions between reading.

every one of his books i have read have been interesting so try to enjoy it they're fun reads.

SnowCrash (5, Informative)

mekkab (133181) | about 10 years ago | (#10576761)

Start with snowcrash,
but my wife and I actually prefer "The Diamond Age"

"Me too" to sibling posts (1)

wurp (51446) | about 10 years ago | (#10576858)

I see responses to you suggesting Snow Crash and Diamond Age. I would like to second (or third, or nth, or whatever) those suggestions. The baroque cycle books are good, but SC and DA (aka A Young Lady's Illustrated Primer) are much better.

Conciseness... (-1, Troll)

youknowmewell (754551) | about 10 years ago | (#10576532)

I'm afraid I lack the attention span to endure through those responses. Good thing Neal isn't running for President or else I might have felt more compelled to actually read some of that.

Re:Conciseness... (1)

Yosemite Sue (15589) | about 10 years ago | (#10576657)

Heh, you won't be finishing the Baroque Cycle books anytime soon, then ... :-7

YS

Hang on... (5, Funny)

rde (17364) | about 10 years ago | (#10576538)

He pulled off his wireless mike and began to whirl it around his head

But, but... it's a wireless mike.

You know, I'm beginning to suspect that that whole answer might have had a little embellishment in it.

Re:Hang on... (1)

turboflux (781551) | about 10 years ago | (#10576584)

Wireless mics aren't completely wireless (most of the time?). They are wired to a battery/transmitter pack that clips to your belt.

Re:Hang on... (5, Funny)

karmaflux (148909) | about 10 years ago | (#10576587)

No, I was there. My father lost his life at Kane Hall. It was a wireless mic in that there was a tiny bud attached to his lapel. A wire ran from that to a box clipped to his belt behind him.

He killed eight civilians with that damn monofilament microphone.

Re:Hang on... (1)

kigrwik (462930) | about 10 years ago | (#10576784)

> But, but... it's a wireless mike.

Use the Force, Luke.

Re:Hang on... (1)

HitScan (180399) | about 10 years ago | (#10576809)

We've got a wireless lavalier mic here, but there's a cable from the actual mic to the wireless transmitter. I may have to swing it around today. :D

Re:Hang on... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576822)

Dude, he didn't say it was TETHERED to anything! It was just a little wireless mike whizzing around his head! Haven't you seen the X-Men movie? He's using a modified Magneto blood-iron-blobs-of-death attack! Neal was lucky to get out alive!

Re:Hang on... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576888)

Yeah, the actual microphone is wired to a small box carried usually on one's waist, or in the inside breast pocket of a jacket.

This box "wirelessly" transmits to a receiver, that is wired into the PA system.

Re:Hang on... (4, Informative)

Rasmus (740) | about 10 years ago | (#10576984)

Having spoken with hundreds of these over the years, I can tell you that they make a fine weapon. And you can indeed swing them by their wire. The wireless part is between you and the receiver. What I think Neal meant was the kind where you have a little clip-on with a wire down to the transmitter typically stuffed into your pocket or clipped onto your belt. Swing that box full of heavy batteries with a bit of gumption and you have yourself a weapon.

this is gay (-1, Troll)

weedsmoker (823814) | about 10 years ago | (#10576544)

hey, i got news for you, you little too bit pricks, you rat-bastarb, you motherfucker i'll cut yo fuckin' balls off, i'll shove 'em up your fuckin' ass. i'll fuckin bury you. i'll stick fuckin' ice picks in your fuckin' eyes, and send em to your fuckin' family so they can eat em for desert. you understand me, you mother-FUCKER!

Re:this is gay (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576890)

No. Please rinse and repeat.

Great-Even more to think about! (1)

sobriquet (666716) | about 10 years ago | (#10576549)

I am in the process of reading all of his works. Digesting his responses here will probably set me back a week! It is nice to see such thoughtful, well constructed answers.

In the Ghetto, Chapters 11-20 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576555)

In the Ghetto Part XI

Reza unfastened the tape that secured the diaper around Marticock's waist. A gag reflex gripped her stomach as the powerful stench of Marticock's hour-old feces assaulted her nostrils. As Reza wrestled with the baby's kicking legs, the fat hanging from her arms rippled and quivered. Reza tried to hold back a cough as her stomach squeezed around the massive lunch she had just eaten. The attempt was futile and Reza coughed and choked simultaneously, causing a large wad of mucus to land on Marticock's face. Marticock clumsily wiped away the mucus with his waving arm and licked it off his hand.

Reza turned Marticock over on the changing table, so that he layed on his stomach. His bottom was smeared with brown goo, which had Vlad's semen mixed in with it. Reza's mouth watered at the sight of the milky white fluid. Her sexual desire burned so strongly within her, that it blinded her to Marticock's feces-smeared butt and all she could see were the love juices of her beloved Vlad, who sat farting in the living room of the double-wide. Reza's mouth watered.

It had been so long since Vlad had shot a load into her multi-chinned mouth. Her jowls quivered like the giant hanging testicles of a prized race-horse. Reza longed to once again partake of the fruits of Vlad's testes; she became entranced; the room melted away; marticock dissolved. The perimeter of her vision narrowed until all she could see was the thick white fluid. Reza lowered her face to Marticock's ass and began to lick the stale semen. It's cold saltiness made her mouth come alive. As she devoured more and more of the fluid, she began to lick more vigorously, until Marticock's ass had been licked clean.

That was just enough to whet her appetite. Reza flipped Marticock over onto his back and took his genitals into her stench-ridden mouth. She sucked on his scrotum and tiny penis all at once. Marticock gurgled with a satisfaction he could not begin to comprehend. Reza was so enchanted by her tender moment with her son, she did not hear the heavy thuds making their way down the center of the double-wide.

Marticock's bedroom door, paper-thin as the walls, flung open and Vlad stood at the entrance wearing his stained t-shirt and yellowed white briefs. Vlad farted with rage, "what in the hell do you think you're doing to my son, you fat cunt?"

A burst of gas was ejected from Reza's bowel by the tensing of her colonic nerves, "I, I..."

Vlad's face reddened and the vein in his temple began to throb, "I told you Marticock is MINE!"

Reza covered her face with her massive arms as Vlad stormed over to her. He raised a massive hairy fist and brought it down upon the quivering tub of lard, "I'll teach you to screw with my Marticock!"

"My Marticock," Vlad yelled, as he repeatedly beat the elephantine woman, "My Marticock!"

"My... Marti... COCK!"

Reza crumpled into a bawling heap on the dirty carpet of the double wide. As she lay shaking and crying, Vlad pulled his thimble-sized penis through the opening in the front of his briefs. He massaged his penis until it was hard and then plunged it into Marticock's ass, which was wet with Reza's saliva.

"Awwwwww, yeah," Vlad gasped.

In the Ghetto Part XII

Editor's Note: a small portion of Chapter XII was leaked out a bit early, causing the context of the chapter to be entirely lost. We apologize for the error.

The universe you see around you is not all that there is. For everything that exists, there is an antipode to its existence. For every idea, there is an antithesis. Our own reality, viewed from the other side, is a very different place. This "mirror universe" is an equal but opposite shadow of our own. It can be called the Evil Universe as well, because although our own universe is held together by the laws of order that bind atoms, molecules, planets, and even human souls together into harmony, the mirror universe is held together only by being a twisted perversion of the true reality.

In the Evil Universe, everything is the opposite of its true nature, and nothing is as it seems. But sometimes, the ephemeral substance of reality grows weak. Sometimes, those who know the secrets can look from one universe into another, and see things as they might have been.

This is one such story.

In the Evil Universe

Vlad woke up with a jolt. His alarm clock was ringing. Reaching over his wife, his best-friend, his life-long companion, he turned it off, and gazed lovingly into her dreary eyes. "Hey sexy," he said, giving her a soft kiss. "I need to get up and go to work."

In the True Universe

Vlad woke up to the smell of feces. Reza had shat herself again, and even to a scat-lover like Vlad, this was too rank to stand. He saw from his clock that it was 2PM. Well, it was still rather early, but he decided to get out of bed before he passed out from the stench. As he stood up, he punched Reza in the face. "Wake up, bitch," he said, trying to dislodge his fist from the folds of her chin. "You just ruined the sheets again."

In the Evil Universe

She stared longingly at him as he softly got out of bed and walked towards the door, still in his underwear and robe. He turned on the light and was surprised to see breakfast already waiting for him. He ate the biscuits, eggs and bacon that his wife had made for his, relishing every second. He loved his wife's cooking.

In the True Universe

She glared at him as he got out of bed and walked towards the door, his own bare ass dribbling liquid feces onto the floor. Reza hadn't shat the bed at all, Vlad had just blamed her again. Vlad looked around the empty, filthy kitchen (the food they bought with their welfare check didn't last long with their appetites). Grumbling, he picked up a few live roaches on the floor and crunched into them. His mood improved a bit. Then, he found a large discarded half-full tub of rotting lard under the sink. Yes!!

In the Evil Universe

He took a quick shower and got dressed. "I'm off to work honey," he called out to her. "Okay, have a good day!" he heard Reza respond. Vlad walked into the computer room and sat down to begin work.

Being a successful small-business enterpeneur, Vlad could afford the luxury of working at home to spend more time with Reza and his only son, Marti. He turned on Windows XP and checked his e-mail -- he had 32 new orders overnight!!

In the True Universe

Vlad sniffed at his armpits. His shower could wait another week or two; he just took one back in June. Vlad sat down at the computer and began to ineptly flame strangers on the Internet. "Hah, I'm so clever," thought Vlad, as he slowly hunt-and-pecked I OWN A BUSINESS. GO FUCK YOURSELF. onto the screen.

In the Evil Universe

Vlad chuckled. Business had been booming; he had recently earned a lot of money and started to start a substantial college fund for Marti. He also got an email from Trollassor - the daily death threat from him - and one from Rusty, who was requesting Vlad's expertise in weblogs for K5. Vlad gladly assisted Rusty with what he needed, and replied to Trollassor's email with a on-line chuckle and a smile.

He set up the new accounts - a process which took only a few minutes. He answered the few technical support requests he had - of over the 1,000 accounts, he only gets 3 to 4 technical support requests per day, something related to his "excellent service" which he is so proud of.

In the True Universe

Vlad frowned as he checked his e-mail. His last remaining customer was promising to drop him immediately because of the inferior service unless Vlad did something about it immediately. "You betrayer," Vlad thought. "You Judas! You Brutus!" Vlad's ego swelled as his anger rose. His face turned red with fury, and he punched his computer monitor squarely. Fortunately, he wasn't strong enough to break the screen, but he did bruise his knuckles badly. He yelped like a girl.

He slowly typed his response to his only remaining customer: I OWN A BUSINESS. GO FUCK YOURSELF. WELCOME TO /DEV/NULL. YOU LITTLE BITCH. Vlad then deleted the customer's account. He tried, at least. He wound up formatting every filesystem on his computer. Vlad spoke aloud, "Well, either way, the bastard's gone. That'll teach him to fuck with ME! I own a business!"

He now had no customers, but he didn't care.

In the Evil Universe

After taking care of his customers, Vlad entered the room with Reza and Marti, and they both spent quality family time together. Vlad was gushing inside; no one was as lucky as him. No one felt the way he did; he had a beautiful wife, he had a loving child, he had a successful business.

In the True Universe

After getting rid of his last customer, Vlad entered the room with Reza and Martincôck. As he snatched up Martincôck and yanked off his diaper, Reza protested. "Scott, this has gone too far! You're a sick, disgusting pedophile, and this ends NOW!" She launched herself at Vlad, but when she collided with him, she bounced off and landed on her ass, breaking through the floorboards. Vlad's fury returned. He kicked her in the face. "I OWN A BUSINESS," he screamed. He brought up his knee, smashing into her nose. "GO FUCK YOURSELF!" Vlad slammed his fist down onto Reza's skull repeatedly. "WELCOME TO /DEV/NULL!!!" Reza slumped to the ground unconscious with a sickening thud. "You little bitch," Vlad muttered.

Martincôck was crying. Well, he was about to cry a lot more. Vlad was exhausted and covered in sweat and stench from his fight with Reza, but that wouldn't stop him. He stroked his penis into an erection and then set Martincôck on his lap.

In the Evil Universe

"Life is truly good," he thought to himself.

In the True Universe

Vlad farted. Martincôck wailed in agony.

"Life is truly good," he thought to himself.

In the Ghetto Part XIII

Vlad belched as he picked dried chunks of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese from his chest hairs. He popped the crusty dried goodness into his mouth and savored the delightful taste. His stomach accepted the offering gladly and rewarded Vlad with a thunderous pocket of gas. Having cleaned his chest, Vlad leaned back in the makeshift, orange vinyled couch and farted.

Vlad's favorite television program was about to come on, "hey, fat-ass, get your ugly mug in here and turn on the TV!"

Reza thudded into the living room and switched on the television. The T.V. slowly flickered into operation. It emitted a high-pitched squeal for several minutes until the aged components in its cabinet warmed to operating temperature. Once the television was operating at near full capacity, Vlad was greeted with a snowy image and static-tainted audio.

"Fix that picture, Fatty. I ain't watchin' no wrestlin' like that!"

Reza adjusted the tin foil sheets that were wrapped around the rabbit ear antennae of the television. She managed to get the picture to clear up to acceptable levels and sat on the floor and leaned against the couch.

"Vlad, honey, wouldn't you rather play with ME tonight, instead of watchin' the wrestlin'?"

"You gonna have to come up wit' somethin' a hellavu lot better'n that, you fat tub of shit."

Reza lowered her head in shame. She couldn't believe it; she hated to admit it; Vlad no longer made her feel attractive. She decided she was going to get Vlad's attention once and for all. She pulled off Vlad's discolored socks and began to suck on his sweaty pale toes, pausing only to remove the hair from his toes from between her rotting teeth. Reza tenderly put each toe in her mouth and massaged the dirt and crust from them. Vlad moaned - with his ass.

Just as Reza was beginning to work on the second foot, a pounding came from the front door. The loosened screen door clattered loudly and roused Vlad to awareness, "whaa...."

"Don't worry, Vladdy-poo, I'll get it..."

Vlad grimaced as his voluminous wife managed to lift herself from the floor. The ordeal left her drenched with sweat and gasping for air. But she liked being in that condition, feeling that it brought her closer to her beloved Vlad. Reza lumbered over to the front door, each gargantuan footstep rattling some piece of second-hand junk purchased at the local flea-market. She looked through the piece of velvet tacked over the broken glass of the front door, "it's your step-sister. what's she doing here at this time of night?"

"I invited her over, you fat stinkin' cunt."

Vlad launched himself from the couch with an extraordinary burst of flatulence. He waddled over to the door and pushed Reza out of the way. She slammed against the wall, knocking a large hole in it. Reza covered her face with her hands and began to weep as she ran into the bedroom to hide.

"Hey there, kiddo," Vlad greeted his step-sister, "I've been waitin' for ya!"

Mary entered the double-wide with a stupid grin on her face. Vlad patted her robust bottom, "hehehehehe, gettin' plump there, girl!"

Mary had learned well from her time spent with Vlad and responded to Vlad's compliment with a healthy fart. Vlad chuckled again and took Mary by her soft, gelatinous arm, "come on in here."

Vlad led Mary into Marticock's chamber and stripped off the two pieces of clothing he was wearing. Mary grew wet as she was barely able to discern the head of Vlad's penis which was covered with brown, dirty pubic hair. Mary shyly took off her pink top and black slacks. Vlad smiled as he slid over to Mary. He put his arms around her and slipped off her Winnie-the-Poo panties and training bra. Vlad pulled his step-sister close to his body and savored the warmth of her hairless pubic area against his legs.

"Awwwww, yeah, baby, you know I like it like that," Vlad cooed.

Vlad pulled away from Mary, "now, are you ready for your little surprise?"

Mary, grinning from ear-to-ear nodded demurely. Vlad picked her up and, sweating and panting, carried her over to Marticock's changing table. He layed Mary upon the table and gently spread her legs. She closed her eyes and sighed softly.

Vlad walked over to Marticock and lifted him out of the crib. He tore Marticock's diaper off with his teeth and rubbed baby oil on him until he was a small, well-oiled sex toy.

Vlad held Marticock by his legs and walked over to Mary, still waiting on the changing table, "are you ready?"

"Ummmm-hmmmmmm..."

Vlad shoved Marticock's head into Mary's unripened vagina. He plunged Marticock in and out vigorously until Mary screamed with delight. Her young body could not withstand the ecstacy that Vlad had thrust upon it and, within seconds, her vagina exploded in its first orgasm. As streams of ejaculate shot from between Mary's legs to spray all over Marticock, Vlad squeezed on Marticock's abdomen, causing him to fart violently. The vibration sent Mary's shaking body further over the edge and she screamed with delight.

Vlad farted with satisfaction.

In the Ghetto Part XIV

Vlad was in trouble. His unemployment was due to expire soon and he had not even bothered looking for a job. He had pinned his hopes on his internet business taking off, but in the several months it had been operating, he had actually spent more than he made from it. Vlad just didn't understand how this was possible. Everything he had read on the internet indicated that pornography was a great way to make big money. Not only did he have the widest selection of porn he could find, he also had the most original, using his own pictures of his precious time with Marticock and he had even managed to sneak some pictures of Reza masturbating with a watermelon in the shower. He decided to check the stats on the admin page of his porn site.

Vlad loaded the page and typed in the username, "freeporn" then the password, "freeporn". Vlad's jaw dropped. One thousand downloads in one hour and he hadn't brought in one penny. A bubble of rage swelled within Vlad's gut and escaped noisily through his anus. Vlad wiped away the sweat that was condensing on his brow and decided he would put the fear of God into the thieves that had perpetrated this upon him. Vlad clicked his way to kuro5hin.org and brought up the "New Diary" form.

* * *

Subject: KEEP IT UP!

To all of you BACKSTABBERS that are FUCKING me out of FREE porn: I WILL find YOU and I WILL DEAL with YOU! Once I find out HOW and WHO, I will be PAYING you a little visit. Have you ever seen Charlies Angels? THAT'S the style of MARTIAL ARTZ I practice. YOU will be getting a FREE LESSON in how fast 400 pounds of VLAD can MOVE!

* * *

Satisfied that this would scare even the most insidious of elements, Vlad posted the diary. He farted with satisfaction and shut down his computer. It looked like Vlad would have to go out job hunting. The very thought of it made the skin on his back crawl, but he had to do something. Reza couldn't breast feed Marticock forever and Vlad needed Marticock healthy, since Marticock's ass was the only good thing left in Vlad's miserable life. Vlad grabbed a cold Budweiser from the refrigerator and picked up his toolbox on the way out the door.

The Chevy van had been up on blocks for several months now. Vlad would have to get it running if he was going to find a job. Vlad sighed heavily and dejectedly walked over to the van. The oil plug was laying in the grass underneath the van; Vlad had to drain the oil one night when he ran out of vaseline to use on Marticock. Vlad also remembered, in his drunken haze, that the battery was dead on the van and he hadn't been able to figure out how to recharge it. His cousin had lent him a battery charger. Vlad walked over to a crumbling wooden box that sat next to the door of the double-wide. He fished out a can of two-cycle oil and the battery charger.

Vlad screwed the oil plug back into the pan and dumped the can of two-cycle oil into the block. He was already panting and sweating from all the exertion, but he still had to charge the battery. Vlad tried to remember the instructions that his cousin had described. Hesitantly, Vlad removed two of the spark plug cables on the van - one on each end of the engine. He placed one of the alligator clamps on one spark plug and the other clamp on the other spark plug. Vlad couldn't see anything happening so he banged on the engine with his hammer, then noticed an electrical cord attached to the battery charger.

"Aha!" Vlad thought. He took the plug and shoved it into an outlet attached to the outside of the double-wide. A great arc of blue energy rose from the engine of the Chevy van and crackled high in the air. The energy bolt vanished as all the lights in the neighborhood went out.

Vlad was exhausted. He disconnected the battery charger and tossed it in the back of the van. He guzzled the remainder of his beer and dropped the can on the driveway before returning to the double-wide for another Budweiser.

In the Ghetto Part XV

Vlad's three chins quivered with delight as he tossed another prozac into his mouth. The pills were doing very little to relieve Vlad's boredom. He sat on the orange couch in his underwear and continued to stare at the flickering images emitted by the television. Vlad was so numbed by the prozac that he didn't notice the clattering of the front door as Reza wallowed into the double-wide.

"Good news, Vladdie-Pop!"

Vlad drooled as he grunted.

"I took all of your empty beer cans I found laying on the floor and sold them! Look! I got twenty dollars!"

A new life sprang into Vlad's eyes, "let's celebrate, you fat fuck!"

Reza beamed as she nodded, "yes!"

One-by-one the neighbors closed their windows and shut their blinds as the Chevy van banged and chugged slowly down the street. Occasionally, a child would peer out from between the blinds and point and laugh at the primer-colored van as it spewed smoke out of the tailpipe.

Vlad had managed to get the van running, but only barely. Even though he had the gas pedal pushed to the floor, the van would only go 30 miles per hour. Once in a while, the van would lunge forward with a great, momentary burst of speed - just enough force to knock some part from the engine and then it would settle back down to its slow pace. Vlad thought this was good though, as it would give him an excuse for being late for work if he ever did find a job.

Eventually, the van completed the 10 mile journey to the movie theater and Vlad parked in a nice handicapped spot. He fiddled with the door handle until it gave way and the door opened and Reza, carrying Marticock, joined him in front of the theater.

"Yeah. I've been wanting to see this," Vlad exclaimed excitedly.

"Look Vlad," Reza pointed to the billboard, "Fried Green Tomatoes 2 is playing!"

Vlad farted, "we're gonna see Blade 3 and you're gonna like it, you fat tub of shit!"

Reza sighed, "yes dear."

The line at the box office was long, but Vlad and Reza and Marticock eventually got their tickets and were seated in the theater only minutes after the movie had started.

Vlad sat his extra-large popcorn and extra-large Coke in the seat next to him. He unzipped his pants and fished out his stiffened penis. He took Marticock from Reza and sat him on his lap, so that his penis penetrated Marticock's anus. Vlad grunted loudly and was admonished with several "shhhhhh" sounds from the audience.

Reza noticed that Vlad was molesting Marticock right there in front of her and began to sob loudly. Vlad paid no attention as Wesley Snipes flashed onto the movie screen, "Yeah! That's what I'm talkin' about Jigabro!" He yelled.

Marticock, his anus irritated and bleeding, began to cry. Vlad tried to soothe him by thrusting his penis in and out of Marticock's anus. It was to no avail. Several audience members began to throw popcorn at the Lockwoods. Some even shot ice at them through straws. But Vlad paid no attention, as he cheered on his hero, screaming with pleasure and farting with excitement.

Eventually, the movie ended and Vlad and Reza, carrying Marticock again, left the building among a large crowd. Vlad, still having visions of Wesley Snipes, was incompetently immitating several of the martial arts moves he had seen in the film when a scrawny black teenager walked up to him, "say, you fat white motherfucker, what's yo' problem anyway? Didn't yo' mamma teach you any manners?"

Vlad's face became flushed with rage, "did you see the martial arts in that movie? THAT'S the style of martial arts I practice."

Vlad bent his legs and brought his arms up in a blocking position, "You're gonna get one free lesson, punk."

With one swift jab and a loud crack, Vlad was flailing on the ground like a turtle that had been turned upside-down, "wha.... where am I."

Reza screamed with terror, "Vladdie-Pop are you OK?" As she knelt to tend to Vlad's bleeding nose, her fat, flopping breasts spilled out of her top.

A large group of people were still filtering out of the theater and they all laughed and pointed at the three Lockwoods.

"Shut-up! You are all evil, evil people!" Reza yelled.

A small girl quietly tip-toed up to Reza and pushed her massive butt. That was enough to cause Reza to topple over onto Vlad, with Marticock sandwiched between them.

The crowd of people laughed harder as they passed by.

Vlad noticed Marticock pressed against his stomach and became aroused. He fished his penis out of his pants again and penetrated Marticock's anus.

Reza farted.

In the Ghetto Part XVI

Vlad muted the television and perked his ears up. He thought he heard a loud banging on the door. Popping another 10mg of Prozac, his fifth of the day, Vlad decided he wasn't hallucinating and farted. Hoisted himself up from squatting position on the couch, he scratched at his crotch through his stained briefs, and waddled on over to the door. The pounding was still going on, and he was sure the screen door would need fixing, which meant it would hang dented forever. Scott opened the door.

Starata bellowed as he ran in through the opened doorway, knocking Scott to his ass. Pots and pans scattered about and garbage spilled all over the kitchen floor as he rolled around trying to regain his footing. Scott's arms and legs waved in the air, like a beetle turned over on its back. A dung beetle, that is.

"This abuse of my beautiful daughter must stop now, William Scott!" Starata yelled in a thick Slovenian accent. "You no treat her right, she is so much woman for you and you disrespect her. You disrespect me too!" he added as he gave Scott's gut a kick.

Scott stood upright, sweat pouring over his face. The room filled with the smell of Vlad's unhealthy colon as he farted in anxiety. It was some sort of animalistic defense mechanism when he felt threatened, akin to a skunk's musk gland.

Screaming at the top of his lungs, Vlad began his default threat. "Ever see TERMINATOR 3?! THAT'S the kind of--"

Vlad was stopped short by a punch to the gut, followed by more angry yelling by Starata.

"You live in squalor! You are nothing more than fat, lazy bum who can not provide for my beautiful Slovenian star. Get a job! Work! Keep food on the table!"

Vlad shook with rage, the old familiar feeling of someone rubbing his failed life in his face rising in his considerable gut. One would think that at this point Scott would be used to his failures and people pointing them out, but he found himself in the middle of yet another violent rage. The difference this time was that he was in the room with Reza's father, who proved a little harder to manhandle than Reza did. Vlad tried once again to threaten the old man.

"I own a business. Go fuck yourself!" he squawked. "Welcome to /dev/null!!!"

With this, Vlad leapt at Starata, arms held in some pseudo-martial arts maneuver. Starata, arthritis and all, was a foot away by the time Scott reached him. Vlad connected with thin air, the lack of resistance causing him to lose his balance. He fell face-forward into the dog's food dish. Wet, liver-flavored mush covered his flabby chin and Coke-bottle glasses. He sputtered and spat pieces of the foul-tasting paste onto the kitchen floor.

Starata kicked Scott in his ass, again pressing Vlad's fat head into the dog's dish.

"You have job in week, or I come back with shotgun!" the old Slav promised. With this he turned on heel and walked out of the door and down the rickety wooden steps, away from 1205 Dearborn. Fences dogs barked at his passing well after he had left in a trail of exhaust smoke.

Vlad, crying in rage he was not able to properly vent, could think of only two things that would make him feel better right then and there.

"REZA, YOU FAT FUCKING CUNT, BRING YOUR WALRUS ASS IN HERE. AND BRING MARTICOCK TOO!"

In the Ghetto Part XVII

Vlad opened the door to the double-wide. His jaw dropped. Standing before him were three figures, all of the exact same proportions. They were tall, lithe and dressed completely in a black cloth of some manufacture that Vlad had never before seen. He imagined the material came from some exotic land, possibly Canada. The only part of their bodies not covered in the space-age cloth were their eyes, which were two points of bright light that were shining a deep red. The only distinction among the three figures were white symbols on their chests. The first sported an 'A', the second a 'V' and the third a '3'.

Inside Vlad's skull, a complex set of reactions were taking place. Neurons connected to emit a series of electrical impulses that flowed slugishly through the sludge of his mind. Some of the impulses escaped into brown, rotting nerves and oozed slowly throughout his body and into various atrophied muscles. The muscles, many of which Vlad hadn't used in ten years, twitched and churned into life. In the fifty three point two seconds it took Vlad's body to adjust itself into the "Crane" stance he had seen in the movie the "Karate Kid", the mysterious figures had all darted into the double-wide and positioned themselves behind him. To Vlad, the three images had barely registered, merely a flicker in his eye that could have been the shadow of a bird flying high overhead.

'A' grabbed Vlad's cold clammy arms and bent them around so that his wrists were brought together behind his back. He then swiped his leg in a circular motion, causing Vlad to trip and fall on his stomach. 'A' disappeared into the double-wide while 'V' cut a circular hole in Vlad's briefs with a laser knife. He shoved a hose into the hole and stuffed it up Vlad's twitching anus. 'V' tossed the other end of the hose to '3', who affixed a gas mask to the hose. He then attached the mask to Vlad's face.

By the time Vlad had realized that his Crane Stance had failed, 'A' returned with Marticock. He closed the door of the double-wide and 'V' joined him in front of the door, with Vlad watching. 'V' held Marticock against the water-warped door while 'A' produced a bag of gleaming, silver-coated 10 inch nails. One-by-one he put the nails in a nail gun and shot them into Marticock, affixing him to the door.

Vlad screamed in horror. His entire body trembled. His face was drenched with sweat. His heart choked as it constricted in his chest, trying to push the thick syrupy Lockwood blood through huge rock-beds of solidified cholesterol. His bowel revolted. Soon, Vlad's intestines were pumping huge volumes of gas out his anus... and into the hose. Vlad choked on his own flatulence. His lungs burned from the unholy stench. Vlad felt himself rolling over, out of his own pale, disgustingly obese body. He felt himself falling.

Vlad had no senses in the tradition he had been accustomed to his entire life. But he had an awareness at a different level - a level that he simply understood as Natural, but he could not comprehend. He sensed himself falling at tremendous speed to an unimaginable depth. Then...

BANG.

Vlad jerked to consciousness. His body was drenched with pungent sweat. His heart was pounding blood through stiffened arteries. He anus burned from the gasses violently escaping from it. He opened his eyes and found himself on his bedroom floor, wallowing in a unique blend of potato chip and cookie crumbs. Slowly his senses returned to him and he realized Reza was snoring like a hippopotamus wailing for a mate.

It had all been a nightmare.

Vlad got up slowly and peeled off his urine-soaked briefs and stained, sleeveless v-neck t-shirt. He thudded out of the bedroom and down the hall to Marticock's chamber. He slowly opened the door. Vlad could see nothing in the darkness of the double-wide, but he could hear and smell Marticock's infant farts. The farts that made him so proud. The farts he would get to nurture and mold into full-blown Lockwood eruptions. His penis rose to attention upon detecting the tiny vibrations emanating from Marticock's bowel. Vlad oozed into the nursery and closed the door behind him.

In the Ghetto Part XVIII

"Wake the fuck up, you ugly cunt," Vlad belched as he unbuckled his belt. It was Sunday, and it was time for the weekly eating fest.

Vlad and the human tractor-trailer Reza had already been banned from every all-you-can-eat place in Joliet. Aside from the health violations from Vlad's frequent shitting his pants, they would typically eat literally truckloads of food at a time. They were directly responsible for the demise of more than one all-you-can-eat restaurant.

Vlad opened the phone book to the bookmarked page. He picked up the phone and clumsily dialed the numbers with a narrow stick since his fingers were much too fat for the telephone.

He belched as the phone rang. A gruff voice picked up and said "Anderson and Julius Subcontracting, this is Bruce." Vlad nearly ejaculated in his pants -- this was the fat guy whose services he had used before.

"Yeah, you fat fuck, I need you to bring a forklift to put my whale of a cunt wife in the back of my truck." Whenever Vlad and Reza went out together, he used Anderson and Julius Subcontracting to remove Reza from the house and put her in the bed of the truck, like a lowly cow.

Hours later, a forklift and heavy crane was on site, removing Reza from the house and placing her into the bed. Typically, the sheer weight of Reza would pop all 4 tires on the truck as soon as she was set in. Vlad was forced to buy solid-tires for the truck to compensate for his fatass of a wife.

Vlad farted. "Let's go you stupid cunt" he said when she was finally in the bed. Vlad opened the door and barely squeezed in and sat on the shit-stained leather. While carrying such a massive load, the truck could travel no more than 15 miles per hour.

As Vlad crawled down the Interstate in the far left lane, cars and cars were swerving dangerously to avoid hitting the fatass wife. Legally, the vehicle was now an "oversized load", since Reza's flab would droop over the side of the truck. Each lane to either side of the truck was mostly unusable since Reza's flab would oscillate precariously and create the possibility of hitting cars.

Cars backed up for literally miles behind the oversized couple. Reza shat herself and than came in the excitement of the vibrations. Shit was flying out of the back of the truck and onto the windshields of the cars behind him.

"Watch what your doing, you fat fucking bitch" Vlad shouted. Finally, a Highway Patrol agent caught up to the gruesome twosome and fulled him over.

"What the hell do you think you're doing? You fat wife is spewing shit onto the cars," exclaimed the highway patrolman. He was fat, but compared to Vlad and Reza, he was as skinny as Ally McBeal.

"You fucking cunt, I'm going to whip you." Vlad squeezed out of the truck and took a phone cord in his hands. The highway patrolman jumped toward Reza to protect the gigantic ass. At the same time, in sheer terror, Reza shifted her weight.

The enormous change in weight altered the center of gravity so much in the truck that it tipped over, falling directly on the patrolman. He was crushed on tons of fat and 50 pounds of steel. Killed immediately, blood squished out of him, as toothpaste coming out of the container.

"Stupid fucking cunt," Vlad said.

In the Ghetto Part XIX

Marticock stared vacantly at the large stuffed animal that sat propped against the side of his crib. The bear was a gift from Marticock's grandmother and, at a subconscious level, it comforted him. The toy was three times Marticock's size and far too heavy for him to move with a casual tug. Marticock's unsteady hand reached out to the bear and grasped the arm. He pulled on the toy two or three times, then grew weary. Marticock rested a moment, panting, sweating and farting.

Once he was rested, Marticock rolled over onto his stomach and pulled his body toward the bear. The friction against his penis, roughly the size of the ball from a ball-point pen, caused him to get an erection and fed his determination. With a few more pulls, Marticock had dragged himself to the bear. He rested on the floor of the crib, panting and sweating and drooling.

Marticock regained his strength and pulled himself up, using the bear as a brace. Marticock let go of the bear and then let himself fall against it. The bear fell over onto its face. The bear was made so that it was always in a sitting position and so, it sat on the floor of the crib with its rear high in the air and its face to the floor.

Marticock clumsily fiddled with his diaper until it came loose and he pulled himself along the crib, causing his diaper to slip away from his pale, clammy body. Marticock grabbed onto the sides of the bear with each hand and pulled himself onto it, so that he was mounting it.

Marticock moved his waist around until his tiny penis penetrated a tear in the bear's seam. He thrust against the bear several times until a strange sensation flooded over him. Marticock was far too young to ejaculate but, as is always the case with Nature, a compensatory mechanism was invoked. As the endorphines flooded little Marticock's little brain, his little intestines clenched tightly, expunging a quick, wet stream of liquid feces, chased by an incredible boom of flatulence. Spent, Marticock collapsed on the bear, his penis and bowel twitching.

Elsewhere in the double-wide, Vlad farted. It wasn't his normal style of anal eructation. This was one of Vlad's special farts. The kind of fart that Vlad had always found to portend something of significance. Subconsciously, Vlad analyzed the frequency of the anal vibrations created in the wake of the fart; his nose studied the molecular composition of the gasses; his ears classified the tonal resonances.

Deep in Vlad's mind a realization congealed out of the slime and slowly bubbled its way into consciousness: his son had become a Cockwood.

In the Ghetto Part XX

Vlad awoke with a start and an alarmed fart. There was a buzzing in his chest, just under his left boob. This was it, his heart was giving out Vlad thought. Vlad clutched at the source of the vibrations. Under his pendulous man-boob was his alarm clock. At some point in the night he had rolled over on to the clock and it had become enveloped in his ample, sweaty flesh. Vlad let out a sigh and fart of relief as he pulled the clock from between his fat rolls. It was 1pm, Vlad had to be at his appointment by 3pm. Plenty of time for Vlad to prepare.

Even though Vlad had his monthly shower only 3 weeks ago, he decided it would be best to wash up. He rolled out of bed and hit the floor with a thud. The boards creaked as his spheroid body lurched its way across the stressed floor. Vlad bypassed the bathroom, mold and the weight of him and the ever expanding Reza had caused the bathroom to collapse into the basement. He went right to the backyard. The sprinkler was right were he had left it from his previous washing. Vlad's sausage like fingers reached down and clutched at the valve to turn on the water. Vlad turned and dropped the tarp that was covering his massively naked body. The neighbors have all erected 10 foot privacy fences. Vlad yells out, at his prudish neighbors. "You are all fucking prudes. I am not ashamed of my body. I am all man!" There is a shout from behind the fence: "Shut the fuck up, you fat fucking fuck." Vlad turned beet red, he let out an angry, defensive fart.

"What the fuck did you just say?!? I am going to fucking kick your ass! You ever see Finding Nemo? That's the kind of Kung Fu I practice. Get over here and let me give you a free lesson," Vlad warbled thru his bulbous neckmeat.

Vlad strained to hear his opponents pleas for mercy in the face of his fighting skills. Nothing, just the sounds of a back yard BBQ. Vlad yelled out again: "I said come over here so I can kick your ass!" Still nothing. Vlad let out a lonely fart. He mumbled something about the fierceness of his fighting style as he made his way to his bathing pit.

The water had saturated the ground and Vlad's stubby legs sunk in with each step he took. It made a sucking sound as he pulled his leg up. The noise reminded him of his nightly fuck festivals he has with his favorite sex toy, Marticock. Oh, if only Marti was here now. Vlad's normally flaccid penis was standing tall at a full 1.25" and was looking to bareback a baby. But, Vlad put this out of his mind as he concentrated of getting ready to go. After a few minutes of water running over him, Vlad set back in to the house. The muddy lawn was now covered by an oily, sour milk smelling film. All living things are now dead or dying.

Vlad wanted to make a good impression at his interview. He had read in the paper that a local Fortuen 500 company had lost their CIO, Vlad could do that. He was the CIO for El-Arse Hosting, a ISP catering to Gay Arabs and other hardcore fetish sites. Since he wanted to look important, Vlad decided to do a bit of Laundry. He wobbled over to the pile of laundry that festered in the corner of the room. He Kicked the pile over, it expelled a cloud of mold spores that almost choked Vlad, but, the barrier if stench that encloses his body repelled them. Vlad pulled a can of Raid from out of Marticock's toybox. He sprayed it's cleansing pine scent towards the pile. Various bugs made a run for it. Vlad grabbed the least stained wife beater and put it on. Vlad tucked in his boobs and pulled up his pants. This was such an important event, Vlad even wore underwear. Or, at least, he work Reba's. They were the same size as his: 5XL. "Brown in back, yellow up front," Vlad chuckled to himself as he slipped them on over his pants.

Vlad was ready to go. He squeezed out the front door and stepped around the hole in the front porch. Last week, he had tripped while stepping on the porch and fell thru to the foundation. Vlad muttered about how the flooring was substandard. His slumlord had tried to tell him that wood could not withstand his weight of his lard filled body. But, Vlad knew different. Vlad strained to lift his leg to get up in his van. An anxious fart escaped from the folds of Vlad's ass as Vlad slid into the steel reinforced seat. The suspension on the old clunker groaned as it tried to support Vlad's corpulent body. Vlad turned the key and the started clicked. Vlad slammed his ham hock like foot on to the accelerator. The engine gave out a sputter and was forced to life. Vlad Starts the tape player on his boombox. His 8 track burned out. Vlad was forced to record his Eminem mp3s at the library. The boombox still showed the scars from being rolled down the handicap ramp, with Vlad, by the librarians. Vlad threw the transmission in reverse and floored it. Before Vlad could even start singing along to his hero, the van came to a jerking halt. Vlad had his a cop cruiser.

Vlad slammed his van's door open. He could barely contain his rage. The cop exits his vehicle and asks Vlad if he is ok. Vlad can't hold it anymore. An angry fart rattles from his cavern like anus alerting everyone within earshot to the upcoming fury. "Why don't you fucking cops watch where the fuck you are going?!? You think you can just fuck with me? Have you seen Seabiscuit? That's the kin..." Vlad didn't even notice the tazer pistol in the cops hand. Not until 50k shot thru his dough like body. Vlad dropped like 700 pounds of cookie dough and his the pavement with a dull, meaty thump. The contractions from the charge has caused Vlad's bowel's to violently contract. Expelling fecal matter, semen and methane gas out of Vlad's ass. Sadly, the sparks from the tazer ignite Vlad's methane sending him rolling down the street like a flaming pinwheel.

Reza is getting off of the cross town bus as she sees her love, Vlad, rocketing by. She drops the government cheese and Marticock and she sits on the curb and cries. Marti looks at his mother and all she can do is release a defeated little fart.

My father lost his life at Kane Hall. (5, Funny)

karmaflux (148909) | about 10 years ago | (#10576558)

5/14 NEVER FORGET America has declared war on science fiction writers!

Re:My father lost his life at Kane Hall. (5, Funny)

Xofer D (29055) | about 10 years ago | (#10576836)

5/14 NEVER FORGET America has declared war on science fiction writers!
I'm afraid you misunderstand the current state of US foreign policy. The group "science fiction writers" is a tangible group. It is possible to round up science fiction writers and shoot them. This is not consistent with current policy.

Instead, the USA must declare war on something intangible, like Science Fiction - or better, to declare war on the abstract concept Science. This is much more consistent with the way things are done in the USA these days.

Great interview... (5, Funny)

JimDabell (42870) | about 10 years ago | (#10576561)

...but I hated the last answer.

Re:Great interview... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576626)

Why? Were you hoping to get all his future books for free?

Tell me, are you willing to just tell your boss that from now on you are willing towork for free because money is evil or something?

Re:Great interview... (3, Funny)

justforaday (560408) | about 10 years ago | (#10576694)

...but I hated the last answer.

I guess this is right in line with how a lot of people don't like the way Neal ends most things that he writes... : p

Shatner he ain't (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576564)

This has got to be one of the longest interviews on Slashdot. but then again this is the author that used 5 pages to describe a character eating cereal. (captain crunch in Cryptonomicon)

Re:Shatner he ain't (5, Funny)

imsabbel (611519) | about 10 years ago | (#10576955)

Hah. He has much to learn still.
Robert Jordan could have filled 8 pages, just for the cereal (and another 3 for they texture of those guys shoes)

best....Q&A....ever! (-1, Redundant)

macshune (628296) | about 10 years ago | (#10576565)

4) Who would win? (Score:5, Funny) - by Call Me Black Cloud

In a fight between you and William Gibson, who would win?

Neal:

You don't have to settle for mere idle speculation. Let me tell you how it came out on the three occasions when we did fight.

The first time was a year or two after SNOW CRASH came out. I was doing a reading/signing at White Dwarf Books in Vancouver. Gibson stopped by to say hello and extended his hand as if to shake. But I remembered something Bruce Sterling had told me. For, at the time, Sterling and I had formed a pact to fight Gibson. Gibson had been regrown in a vat from scraps of DNA after Sterling had crashed an LNG tanker into Gibson's Stealth pleasure barge in the Straits of Juan de Fuca. During the regeneration process, telescoping Carbonite stilettos had been incorporated into Gibson's arms. Remembering this in the nick of time, I grabbed the signing table and flipped it up between us. Of course the Carbonite stilettos pierced it as if it were cork board, but this spoiled his aim long enough for me to whip my wakizashi out from between my shoulder blades and swing at his head. He deflected the blow with a force blast that sprained my wrist. The falling table knocked over a space heater and set fire to the store. Everyone else fled. Gibson and I dueled among blazing stacks of books for a while. Slowly I gained the upper hand, for, on defense, his Praying Mantis style was no match for my Flying Cloud technique. But I lost him behind a cloud of smoke. Then I had to get out of the place. The streets were crowded with his black-suited minions and I had to turn into a swarm of locusts and fly back to Seattle.

The second time was a few years later when Gibson came through Seattle on his IDORU tour. Between doing some drive-by signings at local bookstores, he came and devastated my quarter of the city. I had been in a trance for seven days and seven nights and was unaware of these goings-on, but he came to me in a vision and taunted me, and left a message on my cellphone. That evening he was doing a reading at Kane Hall on the University of Washington campus. Swathed in black, I climbed to the top of the hall, mesmerized his snipers, sliced a hole in the roof using a plasma cutter, let myself into the catwalks above the stage, and then leapt down upon him from forty feet above. But I had forgotten that he had once studied in the same monastery as I, and knew all of my techniques. He rolled away at the last moment. I struck only the lectern, smashing it to kindling. Snatching up one jagged shard of oak I adopted the Mountain Tiger position just as you would expect. He pulled off his wireless mike and began to whirl it around his head. From there, the fight proceeded along predictable lines. As a stalemate developed we began to resort more and more to the use of pure energy, modulated by Red Lotus incantations of the third Sung group, which eventually to the collapse of the building's roof and the loss of eight hundred lives. But as they were only peasants, we did not care.

Our third fight occurred at the Peace Arch on the U.S./Canadian border between Seattle and Vancouver. Gibson wished to retire from that sort of lifestyle that required ceaseless training in the martial arts and sleeping outdoors under the rain. He only wished to sit in his garden brushing out novels on rice paper. But honor dictated that he must fight me for a third time first. Of course the Peace Arch did not remain standing for long. Before long my sword arm hung useless at my side. One of my psi blasts kicked up a large divot of earth and rubble, uncovering a silver metallic object, hitherto buried, that seemed to have been crafted by an industrial designer. It was a nitro-veridian device that had been buried there by Sterling. We were able to fly clear before it detonated. The blast caused a seismic rupture that split off a sizable part of Canada and created what we now know as Vancouver Island. This was the last fight between me and Gibson. For both of us, by studying certain ancient prophecies, had independently arrived at the same conclusion, namely that Sterling's professed interest in industrial design was a mere cover for work in superweapons. Gibson and I formed a pact to fight Sterling. So far we have made little headway in seeking out his lair of brushed steel and white LEDs, because I had a dentist appointment and Gibson had to attend a writers' conference, but keep an eye on Slashdot for any further developments.

Clearly written by a man... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576572)

...who gets paid by the word.

Classic ... (5, Funny)

Paul Lamere (21149) | about 10 years ago | (#10576600)

"In order to set her straight, I had to let her know that the reason she'd never heard of me was because I was famous."

Ouch! (3, Funny)

cmstremi (206046) | about 10 years ago | (#10576603)

My thoughts are more in line with those of Jaron Lanier, who points out that while hardware might be getting faster all the time, software is shit
OUCH!

(removes mirrorshades, wipes tears, blows nose, composes self)

Re:Ouch! (3, Interesting)

capt.Hij (318203) | about 10 years ago | (#10576673)

Actually this quote was way off base. The director of the scientific computing/applied math program at Columbia has a set of graphs he uses in his talks. One graph demonstrates the computational power as a function of time due to hardware advances. The other demonstrates the time it takes to invert large, linear systems over time due to advances in mathematics. Over time the mathematicians are doing as good as or better than the hardware advances. The conclusion is that we can't solve the big problems without investing both in hardware and algorithm development.

uh uh (5, Funny)

WormholeFiend (674934) | about 10 years ago | (#10576609)

And without software to do something useful with all that hardware, the hardware's nothing more than a really complicated space heater.

I guess he doesn't play any computer games on his space heater... :P

Re:uh uh (1)

Xofer D (29055) | about 10 years ago | (#10576868)

I guess he doesn't play any computer games on his space heater..
He did say that he uses OS X, so he's probably using a mac. As we all know, there are no games [insidemacgames.com] for the macintosh.

Interesting (4, Funny)

Pentagram (40862) | about 10 years ago | (#10576610)

Nice interview with some interesting ideas, but tailed off rather abruptly.

Re:Interesting (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576719)

>> Nice interview with some interesting ideas, but tailed off rather abruptly.

Just like "The Diamond Age" - imagine that!

Re:Interesting (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576754)

*whoosh*

Great Interview (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576613)

but am I supposed to know who Neal Stephenson is?

Is this like when you start out with "Cringely writes..." as if I am supposed to say "Oh, yes Cringely. You mean Juan Cringely, gay activist?"

eh... (-1, Flamebait)

rwven (663186) | about 10 years ago | (#10576625)

it's funny but not all that impressive. It seemed to me that a lot of the time he *might* have been interested in listening to himself blather out big words or something. I think he was trying to sound overly philosophical at points and not really....normal...

Just a quick reminder (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576645)

You can get this interview in printed form as a five book boxed set. Thank you. ;)

Second Amendment (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576658)

"In the U.S., where the right to bear **certain** weapons is written into the Constitution..."

My own emphasis on the word "certain." This is a common mistake, fostered by our educational system. The 2nd amendment doesn't specify "certain" or "specific" weapons for protection. It protects **all** weapons. The key phrase here is "Congress shall make no law..." And even though your government-approved social studies teacher told you that the Constitution is a "living document" and is "open to interpretation," I submit to you that "Congress shall make no law" means what it says and says what it means.

Remember this document was written by people who had just won a war, by a long shot, against the most powerful and oppressive empire in their world. One of the reasons they won is because the **individual** colonists had better rifles than their government overlords. This would be like individual Americans having better assault rifles than the American government. Which, of course, is forbidden by federal and state laws.

Re:Second Amendment (5, Informative)

adavies42 (746183) | about 10 years ago | (#10576723)

While I agree in general, the nitpicker in me is forced to point out that your specific point is totally bogus. "Congress shall make no law" is from the *First* Amendment. The key phrase from the Second is "shall not be infringed", as someone on here has in their sig.

Re:Second Amendment (1)

malfunct (120790) | about 10 years ago | (#10576794)

Its more like they won because the people they were fighting against were to busy in an argument with someone else to properly deal with some pesky colonists in a place they weren't even sure was much good for anything except for a few taxes that were probably not enough to pay for the military they had to provide to insure that they were collected.

That said I am on the same lines of thinking as you that in America you should have the protected right to bear any arms available. You should not however have the right to use those arms in any manner that you please except in the case you plan to overthrow the established government through show of arms. In that case you better have friends who are thinking the same as you are.

Re:Second Amendment (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576897)

[From original poster of parent]

"You should not however have the right to use those arms in any manner that you please ..."

Yes, you're right, and that is covered under the Zero Aggression Principle, which is the basis for all libertarian philosophy:

No person, under any circumstances or for any reason, has the right to **initiate** aggression against another human being.

Most people agree with this, until you start actually applying it to their favorite controversial subjects. For example, apply the Zero Aggression Principle to gun control: Does dropping a pistol in your pocket or slinging a machine gun over your shoulder, and then walking out onto the street, initiate agression against anyone? No. Does arresting someone for doing so, when that person is not threatening or harming anyone else, initiate aggression? Yes.

"But that level of freedom is not practical!" and "Carrying weapons endangers others because of what **could** happen!" you say. Uh huh. Zero aggression sounds like such a good idea, until you start applying it without compromise. Then even so-called "progressive" and "socially conscious" people find all kinds of reasons to initiate aggression. But only for the best of reasons, and for the common good, of course.

Re:Second Amendment (2, Insightful)

Mac Degger (576336) | about 10 years ago | (#10576901)

I'm a EU-an, and don't know the US constitution by heart, but doesn't the second amendment also have something along the lines of 'by a militia' in there?
The way I always thought of it, that means that individual weapon ownership should be illegal, except if you are litterally part of a militia, /with all the duties which that entails/.

Re:Second Amendment (2, Insightful)

iamacat (583406) | about 10 years ago | (#10576919)

Somehow I suspect Second Amendment was talking about pistols, not mortars. Something you can use to repell bandits who show up at your house, but not to interfere with general public's "pursuit of happiness".

If, despite common sense, second amendment advocates private ownership of nuclear bombs, well it's time for another amendment. How are snipper or automatic rifles necessary for self defence? Let everyone have manually loaded single-shot pistols, or better yet decent non/less-lethal weapons.

Wonderful interview, except... (5, Funny)

Masker (25119) | about 10 years ago | (#10576675)

while I enjoyed his answers, the endings tended to fall a little flat.

hmm (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576680)

[reads pages of text]
[hits PgDn repeatedly]

This guy likes the sound of his own keyboard, eh?

pffft. I call shenanigans (1, Redundant)

Frequanaut (135988) | about 10 years ago | (#10576711)



How do you "whirl a wireless mike"?

Beowulf writers (5, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 10 years ago | (#10576722)

Imagine a...

Seriously though, Neal says that the contrast between popular authors making money and literary authors not making money "IS NOT FAIR and [...] MAKES NO SENSE" but to me it's perfectly logical. The strength in any system belongs to the masses, whether they realize it or not. The public (myself included) wants good yarns more than great literary works. Do I care that Neal's fiction is, while incredible bright and interesting, essentially mental popcorn? Hell no. I just want to be entertained and his books provide me the greatest entertainment per page and per dollar, so I buy them. I would prefer to read Zodiac rather than Wuthering Heights because it does a superior job of entertaining me.

Re:Beowulf writers (1)

Hatta (162192) | about 10 years ago | (#10576932)

The public (myself included) wants good yarns more than great literary works. Do I care that Neal's fiction is, while incredible bright and interesting, essentially mental popcorn? Hell no. I just want to be entertained and his books provide me the greatest entertainment per page and per dollar, so I buy them. I would prefer to read Zodiac rather than Wuthering Heights because it does a superior job of entertaining me.

I submit that all great literature is entertaining, due to its very greatness. I fail to understand how a boring book could be considered great. For books like Wuthering Heights, which stink to high heaven, I point you to the parable of the Emperor's New Clothes.

Imagine... (1)

adam31 (817930) | about 10 years ago | (#10576735)

so I'm going to call them 'Beowulf writers'

Imagine... Neal Stephenson writing this phrase with a Big Huge Grin.

Beowulf Writers (4, Funny)

Z4rd0Z (211373) | about 10 years ago | (#10576737)

Since he mentioned Beowulf writers, I'd like to designate this thread as a place for all Beowulf cluster jokes. Just think of it as a public service.

Re:Beowulf Writers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576820)

Wow! Imagine a Beowulf Cluster of Dante-Writers!

Re:Beowulf Writers (4, Funny)

dpilot (134227) | about 10 years ago | (#10576907)

So is a convention of commercial authors a...

rimshot please...

Oh, why even bother with the punchline. You can see it coming a mile away.

Dear Neal, (-1, Flamebait)

Jucius Maximus (229128) | about 10 years ago | (#10576745)

Why is your site absolutely useless? The front page is just a picture containing your name in a nicely anti-aliased embedded graphic. If you don't have a popup blocker, it launches a bandwidth intensive popup window with stupid sound effects that contains important info about yourself and your work. Do you know that people with popup browsers won't see this window? Getting back to the useless front page (with no alt text so blind readers will wonder what's going on,) clicking on your name just brings up that same popup window again. It is absolutely impossible to view this page if you're blind, if you don't have flash installed or if you have a popup blocker.

Neal, you have the second worst site I have ever seen. It is topped only by the (thankfully now defunct) jamby.net.

Re:Dear Neal, (1)

Matey-O (518004) | about 10 years ago | (#10576937)

You've obviously never gone to Zombocom [zombo.com]

Never read him, but: (5, Interesting)

RealProgrammer (723725) | about 10 years ago | (#10576767)

From Q.2:
...the system I am describing here IS NOT FAIR and that IT MAKES NO SENSE and that I don't deserve to have the freedom that is accorded a Beowulf writer when many talented and excellent writers---some of them good friends of mine---end up selling small numbers of books and having to cultivate grants....

I understand his position, and why he has to say that, but the system does make sense in this way: he took the risk. The academic writers have worked very hard to get where they are, but their career choices have followed a path of risk avoidance.

I work in academia, and I have made the same decisions they have. Do I work on writing software that people (the masses) will use and pay for, or do I cling to the safety of Alma Mater? I'm still here, clinging, critiquing other people's work instead of taking the risks of failure and rejection by writing my own.

Real programmer? Ha.

Who? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576782)

Who is this Neal Stephenson guy?
Never heard of him.
l8,
AC

Gibson? Stephenson? (2, Funny)

Tibor the Hun (143056) | about 10 years ago | (#10576815)

Fuck, for the life of me I still can't tell the difference between the two.
Anyone have any mnemonic devices to help me out?

Someone tell George Bush... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576853)

"The best "self-defense means" when you are surrounded by a hundred million people of some other culture is to avoid dangerous places and figure out some way to get along with the folks around you."

Stephenson got knighted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576855)

Yes, it's true. Knighted by the queen of England. She took a sword and said: "kneel, Stephenson".

Thank you, thank you. I'll be here all night. And tell Seinfeld I said hello!

Re:Stephenson got knighted (1)

fireboy1919 (257783) | about 10 years ago | (#10576950)

Thank you, Spider Robinson.

Cliff Notes! (2, Funny)

CitznFish (222446) | about 10 years ago | (#10576909)

Need cliff notes! I don't have 8 hours to read this while at work!

Best. Interview. Evar! (3, Interesting)

soliptic (665417) | about 10 years ago | (#10576933)

And I'm only half way through Question 4.

For anyone preparing themselves to shout "fanboy!" - I've never read any of this guy's books in my life. I think that might have to change now ;)

Gee, Neal, thanks a lot (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 years ago | (#10576942)

I can generally restrain myself from laughing out loud at work, but I wasn't able to help myself as I read through the accounts of your three fights with Bill Gibson. To make things worse, my directorate manager (a corporate vice-president) happened to choose that particular moment to walk right past my office. He gave me a quizzical glance and went on his way.

Aha! (2, Funny)

identity0 (77976) | about 10 years ago | (#10576961)

which eventually to the collapse of the building's roof and the loss of eight hundred lives.

Aha! So even the great Neal Stephenson makes grammar mistakes! I think you missed a 'led' there, Mr. Stephenson...

(chant: 'I'm not worthy, I'm not worthy....')

This may sound a little odd... (2, Interesting)

Denyer (717613) | about 10 years ago | (#10576977)

...especially to myself, as I'm more of an English geek than a computer one: I'd never heard of Neal Stephenson either.

So, time to do a little digging. The design of his website is painful to navigate, but I have every intention of tracking down a book or two by him because that interview was one of the most interesting things I've read on Slashdot in four years. In particular the bifurcation and accountability issues raised in question two--that's a useful and engaging summary for writing class students.

it turns out that a bookstore is a lot more than a machine that swaps money for books.

People who've read The Salmon of Doubt should appreciate that line all the more. :)

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