With all the cosmic events that are happening in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, why are stories like Daredevil’s even significant?

My @Quora answer to With all the cosmic events that are happening in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, why are stories …

Answer by Thaddeus Howze:

#ALL_LIVES_MATTER

Daredevil's stories matter for the same reasons your story matters. President Obama gets more press in a day than most of us will get in a lifetime. Does that mean our lives matter less, to us?

Comic companies are always forced to ask the question: If I have cosmic stories with beings who are like gods, can alter the very fabric of reality, shape matter and energy at will, why should a guy who beats up muggers get the same kind of treatment in the comics?

Because to the guy struggling to pay his bills who experiences a mugging one day and loses a month's pay, that is a world-shaking event. His life is rocked. Screw the cosmos, how will I feed my family, pay my rent, get to work without money? This man needs a hero, too. Someone who relates to life at his scale.

You see, Peter Parker relates to the common man. The average fellow on the street may not know WHO Spider-Man is but he knows he cares. He's relatable. Spider-Man stops to save construction workers from the sides of buildings. Helps women getting mugged in alleys. Protects the common citizen from the most extraordinary of problems, in a way people can relate to.

https://youtu.be/02S6ucfp1sU
When people meet Thor, Iron Man, Hulk, Superman, these guys are awesome. Full of awe. Far removed from the common man's experience. They are like gods. You don't relate to gods. You tend to worship them. Their story is one of aspiration, you aspire to be like them but you recognize they are distinct from you, the same way you are distinct from your pets.

The common man is looking for something a bit more down to Earth. Daredevil is his hero. Batman is his hero. Spider-Man is his hero. These guys may play in the Big Leagues, but remember the little guy in all of this. They work first hand with the people, not as a concept, but as a concrete reality.

Yes, they can be scary too. That is part of their mystique. But ask the people whose lives they change with their "small" acts of heroic bravery and they will all tell you about their encounter with one of those "little" heroes.

It's not the scale of the hero, its not the cut of his jib, its not the flash of his cape. It's the moment when he helps someone figure out what matters in their lives. A moment of self discovery. A moment of transformation. A moment of something bigger than they are.

It's a problem heroes have been contending with for a long time. And one not easy to shake. Ask Green Lantern:

It's the story that matters, the same way the ancient tales of Hercules and Odysseus matter. Hercules was a hero whose strength was legendary and though his tales told often of his strength, he was known for his challenges, his drunken rages, his inability to forgive, his moral failings were ultimately his undoing.

Odysseus lacking the brawn of the former was forced to be clever, to learn from his opponents, to out-think his foes. Stories are for the people reading them, seeking to find new ways of thinking, new ways of being. Sometimes we fight against the world from the position of Hercules, confident in our power and ability to protect ourselves.

And sometimes we have to fight like Odysseus using our wits, planning ahead, thinking tactically when our enemies are simply more powerful than we can overcome.

Stories both great and small, of heroes whose power rivals stars and mere men whose feet are made of clay both can teach us how to be. They can help us, define us.

#ALL_STORIES_MATTER

With all the cosmic events that are happening in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, why are stories like Daredevil's even significant?

Black History Month – Still Hating It!

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Every day in America is Black History

In February, we are told it is Black History Month. We are allowed to celebrate our accomplishments and display them with pride before a nation that is only too happy to appropriate from us whatever it wants and give us nothing in return.

As it has always been. When Black Apologists say the past is the past and we should get over it, I hang my head in shame for their ignorance. It is clear that such people are given a pulpit to speak because it promotes the ideals so necessary for the system of disenfranchisement we live under to continue.

We can accept that stupid people will say stupid things and move on, or we can stand up and fight for what we know to be right.

Nothing that happened in America should be forgotten. The near-genocide of the Native Americans, the enslavement of Africans, the decimation of new immigrants and ultimately the financial enslavement of an entire planet.

This is why we must never forget the indignities of the past. They are a persistent illusion perpetuated for profit. A canker that disfigures and stigmatizes the efforts of People of Color in America, acting as if our efforts were never meant to do any more than serve those who perceived themselves to be our betters.

Though they were not able to maintain their control over slavery, they have allowed it to be redesigned, re-purposed and hidden in plain sight in the modern era. They call it Jim Crow, Segregation, Separate but Equal, Economic Redlining, the School-to-Prison Pipeline, the Prison-Industrial Complex, the War on Drugs, and their latest addition, Sanctioned Police Brutality and Murder of People of Color in the Line of Duty (now with added vacation time!).

Today the chains are softer, internalized, and often self-perpetuated. Housewives of Atlanta, Self-Hating Rap Music, Celebrity and Sports obsessions, and a good ole America standby, Religion and all of its various self-loathing aphorisms.

The game has changed, but the message is still the same. You can’t compete. We won’t let you. We don’t say no. We just don’t say yes, either.

If you are able to be successful, many times you must do so by casting down your culture and claiming your identity from the one we allow you to wear. Marry White, move away from your people, don’t past down your wealth, disavow your past.

Wear your chains, know your place. I have no use for Black History Month. You cannot give me what I have already earned.

I am the dream of America. I am its awful reality. I cannot be broken and I will not relent. You cannot pretend I don’t exist. Change the media, warp the minds, create your lies.

The truth is far simpler than you would care to believe. For all of your power, all of your cleverness, the only thing you have proven to be superior in is keeping all of humanity in chains to whims better forgotten.

Promoting selfishness as a virtue is foolish. Promoting division among people to maintain your control is wasteful. How many lives have been thrown away furthering an agenda that benefits only a privileged few?

Billions, I’d imagine.

In a few decades, you reign of terror will be over. You will huddle in your walled enclaves and believe in your superiority while you count your worthless billions and hope no one scales the wall to make you pay for your generations of criminal activity.

In the meantime remember this: I will not be stopped. Not now. Not ever. Keep Black History Month for yourselves.

I claim the YEAR, all three hundred and sixty five and a quarter days of it to reminding you WE ARE STILL HERE.

Stronger than you can imagine. More fiercely determined to make our way.

And to be honest, we’re just not that into you. Never were.

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If you like this article:

RACISM IN AMERICA: The Scarlet Letter of A Nation

CIVILIZATION IS A FRAUD: What’s so civilized about it?

A LATE RADICALIZATION: Viewpoint of the Author

Thaddeus Howze is a California-based technologist and author who has worked with computer technology since the 1980’s doing graphic design, computer science, programming, network administration and IT leadership.

His non-fiction work has appeared in numerous magazines: Black Enterprise, the Good Men Project, Examiner.com, and Astronaut.com. He maintains a diverse collection of non-fiction at his blog, A Matter of Scale. He is a contributor at The Enemy, a nonfiction literary publication out of Los Angeles.

He is a contributor to the Scifi.Stackexchange.com with over a thousand articles in a three year period. He is now an author and contributor at Scifiideas.com. His science fiction and fantasy has appeared in blogs such as Medium.com, the Magill Review, ScifiIdeas.com, and the Au Courant Press Journal. He has a wide collection of his work on his website, Hub City Blues. His recently published works can be found here. He also maintains a wide collection of his writing and editing work on Medium.com.

His speculative fiction has appeared in numerous anthologies: Awesome Allshorts: Last Days and Lost Ways (Australia, 2014), The Future is Short (2014), Visions of Leaving Earth (2014), Mothership: Tales of Afrofuturism and Beyond (2014), Genesis Science Fiction (2013), Scraps (2012), and Possibilities (2012).

He has written two books: a collection called Hayward’s Reach (2011) and an e-book novella called Broken Glass (2013). In 2015 he will be releasing Visiting Hours and A Millennium of Madness, two collections of short stories.

If you have enjoyed this publication or any of the other writing he does, consider becoming a Patron. For what you spend on a cup of coffee once per month, you can assist him in creating new stories, new graphics, new articles and new novels. Creating the new takes a little support: http://patreon.com/ebonstorm.

 

 

What does it feel like to be really old knowing that death is imminent?

Stan Hayward, Film/TV/Book writer: 

I am really old, and I know death is imminent.

Most of my friends have passed away, and of those remaining, they suffer from health problems in some way
I am myself totally deaf and partially blind. I live by myself

I am writing this at 6am in the morning
Today, if the weather is fine
I will go for a walk
I will chat with friends
I will do my shopping
I will do my laundry
I will feed the cat
I will tidy up what needs to be done
I will put out the garbage

I will do what most people do who are not really old and know that death is imminent
Because there is no feeling of being old

There is a feeling that you can’t do what you used to do
There is a feeling that you might lose your independence, or if you already have, a feeling that you should try and do as much as you can by yourself
There is a feeling that you should spend as much time as possible with those you like to be with

There is a feeling that time is precious. Of course it always was, but one becomes more aware of it
There is a feeling that many things one does will be done for the last time

There are passing thoughts about those who respect you because you are old, and about those that dismiss you because you are old

There is the aspect that life is changing fast with all the new advances that inundate us daily
There is the aspect of life that nothing changes

Mothers still smile at their babies
Children are still enthralled with their first pet
Learning to ride a bike is still as much fun as starting a company
Blowing out your birthday candles is still as satisfying at eighty as it was at eight

It is not that death is imminent that is important, but that when the curtain comes down, the audience leaves with a sense of satisfaction

As someone once said
The World is a stage
You played your part for what it was worth
You take your bow
and leave

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I am surprised at the number of responses this answer has recieved, and in particular from young people concerned about getting old

I am 84. My generation is probably the last generation to get old in the usual sense of ‘getting old’

My predicted life expectancy is 81.5 years so I am already living on borrowed time
But 1 in 4 people will live past 100, and the first person to live to 150 is alive now. It may be me
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/scien…

But living for a long while is not the same as getting old
The normal image for an old person is:

  • Loneliness
  • Loss of faculties
  • Becoming dependent on others
  • Being out of touch with the world
  • Constant illness
  • Confusion
  • Being house bound
  • Not being able to contribute to society
  • Unmotivated
  • Losing close friends
  • Living in the past
  • Finding young people impatient
  • Not being catered for in the world generally

But perhaps the worst thing is being viewed as old

I used to practice judo, but I don’t now. That’s because I haven’t practised for many years. But age is not the problem. Here is someone teaching it well past 100
http://luzijian.com/

I used to play guitar in a band. I don’t now. But I could if I wanted to. There are plenty of professional musicians of my age and older who do. Les Paul was still playing at 90

I used to go scuba diving. I don’t now. But I could. My friend Reg Vallintine was teaching into his 80’s and is still active in the field
https://www.google.co.uk/search?…

I used to be a sailor, but I am not now, though I could be
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/…

It is not age that prevents one doing these things, providing ones health is OK, but ones priorities with the time available

I am a writer. I have published two books this year, and have others with publishers. I have nine websites and blog, and write daily on Quora

I have a friend who at 78 met his old sweetheart of sixty years ago at college. She was a great grandmother, now a widow. He had never married. They fell in love again and married. He says he has never been happier

I have a friend of 81 who out of loneliness took up dancing a year ago. He is now training to be a dance teacher and courting a dance teacher half his age

I have a lady friend of 76 who dates guys on the internet and then dumps them as frequently as any twenty year old

Most of my friends of my generation are fully active.
They always were fifty or sixty years ago when I first knew them. It was because of their positive attitude to life that we became friends in the first place

Why you will never grow old

With the internet etc. you will never be lonely in the traditional sense;
With the many advances in medical appliances and related fields you will be able to care for yourself well into old age, or will allow others to care for you much easier than now;

With home surveillance and the internet of things, you will be largely self-dependent, secure, and in touch with those you need be;

As a matter of course you will become more aware of your needs to eat well, be active, and generally take care of yourself

Your work will be less stressful than the past, and you will work shorter hours. There will be more activities for you to participate in and more social events for you to join

In all, though you will get old you will not be old.
You will die when your time comes, but you will not be forgotten because your life will be digitally immortalised;

Be thankful that your great, great, great, great, grandchildren will be able to know you, and that you live on in their genes.

Stan Hayward

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30 Cubed is OVER!

My writing challenge for May, 30 CUBED, is OVER. 

You can partake of these stories here, while electron supplies last: https://storify.com/ebonstorm/30-cubed-speculative-fiction-for-the-…

30 stories in 30 days introducing 30 new characters has, as usually, been both grueling and gratifying. I also had four other writers who participated and I have watched their works improve every day. (You guys were great!)

For myself, I have completed 24 of the 30 days with a new or continuing tale of speculative fiction. As usual, I tried not to tackle low hanging fruit: no vampires, no werewolves, no zombies. To make it harder, I would not tell more than one tale of alien invasion (though I love them so). This month has netted me about 40,000 words, give or take.

I created or augmented four serials, one of which I will be entering into Jukepop this month as an ongoing story.

Serials (4)

Air Conditioning (Parts 1-5) – I always write a tale of alien invasion. In this story, the aliens are completely oblivious to the existence of Humans on Earth, since they never touch down on the surface of the planet and don’t appear to notice Humanity at all. Humanity’s reaction to the creature, however, varies wildly.

A Mistress in Thunder – The Spear of Heaven (parts 1 and 2) – Started as part of a serial I was writing elsewhere, I found the character of Radi, the Mistress in Thunder, warrior, titan and all around bad-ass, too compelling to not start more than one thread at the same time. I have three different points in the character’s life and it has been a excellent story so far.

Apostate, Magus, Barbarian (3) – I also added to the first Radi, Mistress of Thunder serial stream with the beautiful, fierce and oh so Black princess and her two future companions, Uriel the Magus, less than evil sorcerer of the Shattered Realms and Kom the Ukla who has a penchant for mega-violence and a love of fried human fingers…

More Tales of Tech Support – I added to the already over-the-top adventures of a technical support agent for Farnsworth’s Monster Emporium and Death-Ray dealership, Todd. In this selection, Todd is winnowing down the candidates for the next hiring wave. Like everything Todd does, he maintains his aplomb under the most difficult circumstances.

Writing Prompts (7)

Five of the stories were writers prompts from other publications or contests with strict limits on what I could produce. Limitations force me to be creative and to envision stories I might not otherwise try. Writing prompts can make you grow.

1. Come Forth the Rising Tide – required I take five random characters from a list on Chuck Wendig’s site and weave them into a short story. (I will probably make something much longer because I had so much fun with the characters.)

2. Yearning was a photo prompt from SciFiIdeas.com which has become one of their featured stories when I was done. It can be found on their site.

These three stories were written for a UK short story contest of 500 words and a sensory theme. I will be submitting them on Monday.

3. Betwixt: An avenger of a South American tribe takes the battle to his corporate enemies after being empowered by two opposing mystic forces.

4. Bismillah: An Middle Eastern son of a sheikh loses his vision and discovers his senses and mind growing more acute to compensate.

5. Damned Decent: A Good Samaritan meets an unusual stranded vehicle on the side of the road and offers to help.

6. Can You Make Room for the Impossible?: A biomech research officer, MX2 and Scoutship Pilot Alena Maximoff investigate a survey call from a planet with wildly conflicting data, unusual enough for a Scoutship to consider investigating. This story came from a writing prompt sent to me by a friend on StartYourNovel.com. I have written five other stories on his site, so we have become friends.

7. Adleiavde: A tale of a young man and his quantum-challenged feline, Addie who had a habit of appearing exactly as people wanted him to be… This was a writing prompt from my monthly writing group I participate with on LinkedIn Sci-Fi Readers, Writers, Collectors and Artists. I won the month of May with this short story and plan on submitting it to Daily Science Fiction for publication.

Clifford Engram, Paranormal Investigator (4)

Keeping Engram in my mind for his next adventures, I planted four seeds.

1. A Drink and A Smile: A rendezvous with an old girlfriend in order to get information on a case, leads to gratuitous violence, poison and death. Not a strange outing considering Engram used to date a Dweller-in-the-Dark.

2. With Just a Spot of Darkness: Introducing Ink, reveals another primary group of metaphysical entities who believe it is their duty to protect the human race by rendering judgement on it. Ink works for them but disagrees with the process. She and Engram are sure to butt heads in the future.

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3. The aforementioned Betwixt, where Paulo harasses the megacorporation which destroyed the rainforest where his tribe once dwelled peacefully. Now Paulo living between all concepts exacts his cruel revenge.

4. How the Other Half Lives: A tale of a family whose patriarch is unable to come home and meets his family for the first time on a trip to a very far away beach. Clifford Engram will meet this family in the future. They will not invite him to the beach…

One Shots (6)

Stories not related to anything else. They come, they go and blaze like meteors in a summer sky, brief but awesome.

1. The Moment of Truth: A knight on a long quest decides he has done enough for the world and wants to just go home free of predestined events. It is dark humor best suited for those who know a bit of roleplaying games and how gamemasters force players on adventures.

2. Sterlings: A hot-blooded scientist, after discovering a plant which can survive and transform water from saline to fresh, realizes he wants to try and woo his equally passionate wife back. His flower of choice is the sterling rose he created in his lab.

3. Sun Kings: A tale of aliens on a mission of mercy. They arrive near Earth to recharge within our sun and to inform us that an extinction-level-event is going to happen soon and there is nothing they can do to help us except…

4. Night Terrors and the Bears who Abet Them: A strange story of a legendary Teddy Bear and the Night Terror trained by him.

5. Humanity Redux: An alien intelligence watches Humanity as we go through a growth state without being aware of how far we’ve already come.

6. Uncovered: A writer has died and learned he was not quite good enough to get into Heaven. His only hope is for his work to be discovered in the future and inspire enough people to have his sentence changed. But almost all copies of his work have been destroyed after World War II…

What will I do after I come back from the brink of Madness?

Send stories to anyone and everyone who is interested. Retool my websites to account for these new stories and my latest work on Medium.com. I have written thirty stories there since the beginning of the year in addition to these.

Most importantly get my work out there. My social media work has paid off and continues to grow my readership. My blog/websites are slowly coming along and I hope the retool will increase my readers further. I will be extending several of my other serials as well, focuses on finishing them and putting them into print.

We are at the midpoint of the year and I had planned to sell 18 stories this year. I am up to number 10 and have eight more to go. It has been slow going but I am not about to give up now. We are going to INCREASE SPEED, not slow down.

LET’S KEEP WRITING. If you need a writing partner, look me up.

I have a writer’s group on Facebook: ‘Dammit, I’m a Sci-Fi Writer, Not a Doctor’: and we are always looking for new voices of genre and speculative fiction to share ideas, blogs, and stories: https://www.facebook.com/groups/471829406194599/

You can find my speculative fiction at:

http://HubCityBlues.com

https://medium.com/@ebonstorm/latest

http://30cubedsf.wordpress.com

Best Flight Safety Film Ever! (Virgin USA)

Normally I avoid advertising like Typhoid Mary serving a side order of fries with bubonic plague. So you understand my surprise when I watched this video designed to both inform and entertain. Now if all commercials were done so well, perhaps I might have more fries with my meals. Brilliant choreography, amazing levels of diversity of music, of actors, and skilled writing. In case you were wondering, this is what good advertising, good education, and reaching your audience where they are looks like. Well done, Virgin!

[And no, I don’t get paid for promoting this ad, I just wanted people to see you can make good advertising that doesn’t insult people’s intelligence, turn their stomach or prostitute anyone on the set.]

The Youtube data associated with the video

Published on Oct 29, 2013

Buckle up to get down. We’ve enlisted the help of Virgin Produced, Director Jon M. Chu, Choreographers Jamal Sims and Christopher Scott, Composer/Producer Jean-yves “Jeeve” Ducornet, Virgin America teammates, and dance stars like Todrick Hall and Madd Chadd to give our safety video a new song and dance — literally. From the exit doors to the oxygen masks, no seat belt was left unbuckled.

Storm – A film by Tim Minchin

In the confines of a London dinner party, comedian Tim Minchin argues with a hippy named Storm. While Storm herself may not be converted, audiences from London to LA have been won over by Tim’s wordplay and the timely message of the film in a society where science and reason are portrayed as the enemy of belief.

Written and performed by Tim Minchin @timminchin. Directed by DC Turner @dcturner. Produced by Tracy King @tkingdoll. http://www.stormmovie.net

Italian subtitles by http://www.comedysubs.org
English subtitles by Jason Livingston
Russian subtitles by Denis Olshin

Here is a video I watched today and fell out laughing.

Now the curious part of this story goes to the people in the comments on YouTube, who complain about how the writer treats the titular character, Storm, a hippie who basically discounts any aspect of knowledge being real, true, useful or even knowable. I personally disagreed with pretty much everything Storm said and found myself exactly in the same place as the author of this work and his viewpoint and mine are almost identical.

I have written about the human penchant for failing to accept reality and instead choosing a good fantasy to place on top of our world view (Freedom vs Society).  In my perspective this is always the wrong thing for us to do. Denying reality never improves it, it only gives us a false sense of what is important in the overall scheme of things.

One of the major complaints was the cruelty of the author in regard to his need to demean Storm while trying to make his point. Storm had no problem disseminating her perspective, which was that scientific endeavor was little more than an opinion.

I don’t feel Minchin is attacking Storm. We should remember much of what he says is an internal dialog that no one but he and the watcher are privy to. He is a bit of a chauvinist but he is tempered by his wife who makes an effort to keep the evening charitable and friendly. 

And even when he decides to go all out, he still does not attack her (as was suggested in the comments). I have no clear evidence of argumentum ad hominem being used. He does not dismiss her perspective but instead asks her to take a stand regarding her perspective.

A stand that required a commitment to learning things that may be uncomfortable for her, because her current perspective did just the opposite. It required no effort on her part. She heard a fact (as she understood it) and accepted it, without any further effort. Her desire to ignore her responsibility to learn new things is what the author is trying to upend.

But I think the real lesson we are to take away from this video is this: Talking to people, even when you are inclined to use logic, reason and well structured argument may not change their mind if their cognitive dissonance is stronger than anything that resembles reason you can bring to bear. There is a time when you simply have to walk away and agree to disagree, hopefully before you become disagreeable.

Lyrics: Storm by Tim Minchin

Inner North London, top floor flat
All white walls, white carpet, white cat,
Rice Paper partitions
Modern art and ambition
The host’s a physician,
Lovely bloke, has his own practice
His girlfriend’s an actress
An old mate from home
And they’re always great fun.
So to dinner we’ve come.

The 5th guest is an unknown,
The hosts have just thrown
Us together for a favour
because this girl’s just arrived from Australia
And has moved to North London
And she’s the sister of someone
Or has some connection.

As we make introductions
I’m struck by her beauty
She’s irrefutably fair
With dark eyes and dark hair
But as she sits
I admit I’m a little bit wary
because I notice the tip of the wing of a fairy
Tattooed on that popular area
Just above the derrière
And when she says “I’m Sagittarien”
I confess a pigeonhole starts to form
And is immediately filled with pigeon
When she says her name is Storm.

Chatter is initially bright and light-hearted
But it’s not long before Storm gets started:
“You can’t know anything,
Knowledge is merely opinion”
She opines, over her Cabernet Sauvignon
Vis a vis
Some unhippily
Empirical comment by me

“Not a good start” I think
We’re only on pre-dinner drinks
And across the room, my wife
Widens her eyes
Silently begs me, Be Nice
A matrimonial warning
Not worth ignoring
So I resist the urge to ask Storm
Whether knowledge is so loose-weave
Of a morning
When deciding whether to leave
Her apartment by the front door
Or a window on the second floor.

The food is delicious and Storm,
Whilst avoiding all meat
Happily sits and eats
While the good doctor, slightly pissedly
Holds court on some anachronistic aspect of medical history
When Storm suddenly she insists
“But the human body is a mystery!
Science just falls in a hole
When it tries to explain the the nature of the soul.”

My hostess throws me a glance
She, like my wife, knows there’s a chance
That I’ll be off on one of my rants
But my lips are sealed.
I just want to enjoy my meal
And although Storm is starting to get my goat
I have no intention of rocking the boat,
Although it’s becoming a bit of a wrestle
Because – like her meteorological namesake –
Storm has no such concerns for our vessel:

“Pharmaceutical companies are the enemy
They promote drug dependency
At the cost of the natural remedies
That are all our bodies need
They are immoral and driven by greed.
Why take drugs
When herbs can solve it?
Why use chemicals
When homeopathic solvents
Can resolve it?
It’s time we all return-to-live
With natural medical alternatives.”

And try as hard as I like,
A small crack appears
In my diplomacy-dike.
“By definition”, I begin
“Alternative Medicine”, I continue
“Has either not been proved to work,
Or been proved not to work.
You know what they call “alternative medicine”
That’s been proved to work?
Medicine.”

“So you don’t believe
In ANY Natural remedies?”

“On the contrary actually:
Before we came to tea,
I took a natural remedy
Derived from the bark of a willow tree
A painkiller that’s virtually side-effect free
It’s got a weird name,
Darling, what was it again?
Masprin?
Basprin?
Aspirin!
Which I paid about a buck for
Down at my local drugstore.

The debate briefly abates
As our hosts collects plates
but as they return with desserts
Storm pertly asserts,

“Shakespeare said it first:
There are more things in heaven and earth
Than exist in your philosophy…
Science is just how we’re trained to look at reality,
It can’t explain love or spirituality.
How does science explain psychics?
Auras; the afterlife; the power of prayer?”

I’m becoming aware
That I’m staring,
I’m like a rabbit suddenly trapped
In the blinding headlights of vacuous crap.
Maybe it’s the Hamlet she just misquoted
Or the eighth glass of wine I just quaffed
But my diplomacy dike groans
And the arsehole held back by its stones
Can be held back no more:

“Look , Storm, I don’t mean to bore you
But there’s no such thing as an aura!
Reading Auras is like reading minds
Or star-signs or tea-leaves or meridian lines
These people aren’t plying a skill,
They are either lying or mentally ill.
Same goes for those who claim to hear God’s demands
And Spiritual healers who think they have magic hands.

By the way,
Why is it OK
For people to pretend they can talk to the dead?
Is it not totally fucked in the head
Lying to some crying woman whose child has died
And telling her you’re in touch with the other side?
That’s just fundamentally sick
Do we need to clarify that there’s no such thing as a psychic?

What, are we fucking 2?
Do we actually think that Horton Heard a Who?
Do we still think that Santa brings us gifts?
That Michael Jackson hasn’t had face-lifts?
Are we still so stunned by circus tricks
That we think that the dead would
Wanna talk to pricks
Like John Edwards?

Storm to her credit despite my derision
Keeps firing off clichés with startling precision
Like a sniper using bollocks for ammunition

“You’re so sure of your position
But you’re just closed-minded
I think you’ll find
Your faith in Science and Tests
Is just as blind
As the faith of any fundamentalist”

“Hmm, that’s a good point, let me think for a bit
Oh wait, my mistake, it’s absolute bullshit.
Science adjusts it’s beliefs based on what’s observed
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved.
If you show me
That, say, homeopathy works,
Then I will change my mind
I’ll spin on a fucking dime
I’ll be embarrassed as hell,
But I will run through the streets yelling
It’s a miracle! Take physics and bin it!
Water has memory!
And while it’s memory of a long lost drop of onion juice is Infinite
It somehow forgets all the poo it’s had in it!

You show me that it works and how it works
And when I’ve recovered from the shock
I will take a compass and carve Fancy That on the side of my cock.”

Everyones just staring at me now,
But I’m pretty pissed and I’ve dug this far down,
So I figure, in for penny, in for a pound:

“Life is full of mystery, yeah
But there are answers out there
And they won’t be found
By people sitting around
Looking serious
And saying isn’t life mysterious?
Let’s sit here and hope
Let’s call up the fucking Pope
Let’s go watch Oprah
Interview Deepak Chopra

If you’re going to watch tele, you should watch Scooby-Doo.
That show was so cool
because every time there’s a church with a ghoul
Or a ghost in a school
They looked beneath the mask and what was inside?
The fucking janitor or the dude who runs the water-slide.
Throughout history
Every mystery
Ever solved has turned out to be
Not Magic.

Does the idea that there might be truth
Frighten you?
Does the idea that one afternoon
On Wiki-fucking-pedia might enlighten you
Frighten you?
Does the notion that there may not be a supernatural
So blow your hippy noodle
That you would rather just stand in the fog
Of your inability to Google?

Isn’t this enough?

Just this world?

Just this beautiful, complex
Wonderfully unfathomable, NATURAL world?
How does it so fail to hold our attention
That we have to diminish it with the invention
Of cheap, man-made Myths and Monsters?
If you’re so into Shakespeare
Lend me your ear:
“To gild refined gold, to paint the lily,
To throw perfume on the violet… is just fucking silly”
Or something like that.
Or what about Satchmo?!
I see trees of Green,
Red roses too,
And fine, if you wish to
Glorify Krishna and Vishnu
In a post-colonial, condescending
Bottled-up and labeled kind of way
Then whatever, that’s ok.
But here’s what gives me a hard-on:
I am a tiny, insignificant, ignorant lump of carbon.
I have one life, and it is short
And unimportant…
But thanks to recent scientific advances
I get to live twice as long
As my great great great great uncleses and auntses.
Twice as long to live this life of mine
Twice as long to love this wife of mine
Twice as many years of friends and wine
Of sharing curries and getting shitty
With good-looking hippies
With fairies on their spines
And butterflies on their titties.

And if perchance I have offended
Think but this and all is mended:
We’d as well be 10 minutes back in time,
For all the chance you’ll change your mind.

[ These are Storm Lyrics on http://www.lyricsmania.com/ ]

More lyrics: http://www.lyricsmania.com/storm_lyrics_tim_minchin.html
All about Tim Minchin: http://www.musictory.com/music/Tim+Minchin