Tuesday, December 11, 2012

A Window Into The Future

Hello there, children!

Last week I upgraded my cell phone. Here's a brief history of my cell phone ownership since... ever. Around 2001 or so, I had one of those enormous Nokia coffin phones. You know, the ones that if you accidentally dropped it, it would create a crack in the earth and countless hordes of demons and monsters would come out of to wreak destruction and bring a thousand years of darkness?

Then around 1996 I got a Treo. Admittedly, this was mostly the fault of Charles Stross but it was still an amazing phone. Think today's smartphones before smartphones, so it was like an awesome James Bond mobile app computer. All I needed was a good app with a Mandelbrot screensaver to scramble the brains of those who looked at it unwittingly and I would have been set. Alas, I never found one.

I bet he had it all planned out from the beginning.

Moving forward, enter marriage and a state of being somewhat "settled down," and I ended up with a Motorola Razor phone. Once I figured out I couldn't shave with it, I replaced it with a Samsung Flight. Touch screen, QWERTY keyboard like my Treo had, but alas not a smart phone proper. Crap may rhyme with app, but it AT&T got that one wrong. The Flight was actually a good phone for a few years, provided one just wanted a phone and nothing more complicated than text messaging. Which I did. Sure, it had internet capability, email, and even some sort of streaming video feature. But when you're poor like I was, they may as well have never existed.

Enter the post-divorce period. I got a tracfone. It was horrible. I am seeking therapy. So I upgraded the tracfone to Walmart's solution for poor people: Straight Talk. It's tracfone, using one of your old discarded cell phones you threw in a box years ago and forgot until now. Forty-five bucks, unlimited calling, unlimited text, unlimited data. Sounds like a bargain, right? Wrong. They neglect to tell you data doesn't usually work with most phones. They send you a sim card and some vague instructions and leave you to your own devices. Get it? YOUR OWN DEVICES! Ok, sorry.

Back to what I was getting at in the first sentence, I got a new phone last week. I've officially caught up with the rest of the world at entered this strange new society that uses and understands technology superior to that which I am used to. So did I get an iPhone, you're wondering? Hell no. I'll never succomb to the glamour of the Cult of Jobs. I once came close to getting an iPod, but never did. Thank my lucky stars.

I got a Windows 8x phone. And man, this thing is smart in every sense of the word. It works awesome, it looks awesome, and it is awesome.

Please keep drooling to a minimum.

So with the new phone came new apps, and new looks into services. Any of you who have read more than this solitary post, or who have known me for more than 3.7 seconds probably know I have an Xbox 360. So this phone ties in with that, uses Smart Glass, etc. And I recently got a subscription to the Xbox Music Pass. Cuz, you know, I like music. Not only can I stream whatever I want on my phone, computer, Xbox, etc., but I can also watch music videos and such. Pretty awesome, I think. It used to be 14.99, but somewhere along the line they dropped the price to 9.99, guaranteeing my interest.

So the next item of business was to think about my computer. I just got a new computer in September, running Windows 7. Windows 8 dropped in October, and it's all Metro and app-laden. I wasn't keen on the thought of spending upwards of 60 bucks to upgrade, so I didn't think much about it. Until now.

So I purchased it and I'm going to upgrade before bed tonight. Next step, get a new car. Preferably a flying car. And then, the only thing left to consider is putting my brain in a robot body.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Chapter Seventeen



Trees. They are everywhere. In the 1989 James Cameron film Aliens, the alien monsters were everywhere. This can't be a coincidence. And, like in that film, representative of a horror plaguing mankind in its near future, trees are bent on our destruction – sitting there, watching us with their rough, bark-covered eyes, plotting, planning, waiting for the time when it is poignant to make their move. And what is this move? What will be the method of our destruction? Most would presume to say it would be hurricane-force winds, the trees “conveniently” leaning over and “accidentally” falling over onto our homes, or worse. Just imagine walking down the street and POW! Flying tree smacks you in the head, knocking you to the ground, spilling your juice or whatever tasty beverage you may have chosen to enjoy at that particular moment in history. This terror is a reality that will not go away just because the reader of this chapter finds it difficult to believe I could conceive such a notion as malevolent trees. It is coming. And I am going to make you understand why, until your cognitive abilities hurt.

The first tree was potentially discovered over 200 million years ago on the supercontinent Gondwana (formerly Gondwanaland). Although this was in the vicinity of what is now Antarctica, the temperatures at this time were perfect for the propagation of the arboreal armadas. During this period of time, the world saw the rise of the civilization of the cone-shaped beings known in the researches of Nathaniel Wingate Peaslee as the Great Race of Yith. I'm sure these two mighty forces must have met on multiple occasions in dramatic battles of the sort one sees in only the Oscar-winning movies, or the ravings of madmen. We will hope for the sake of my own credibility that this book is picked up for at least a made-for-tv movie.

Chapter Fourteen





“Vampires like it windy.” 
- Dr. John Dorian 

Chapter One



The night sky is an interesting thing. Nothing more than a thin layer of gas against an expanse of interminable darkness, it invokes a sense of awe in even the most poetically deficient souls. The Earth rotates at a speed of over one thousand miles per hour, and revolves around the sun at a speed of about 67,000 miles an hour. We cling to our hunk of rock, mercifully oblivious to the cosmos as a whole - even Carl Sagan might have been hard-pressed to think of a suitably non-horrifying way to objectively describe humanity's place in the universe. The universe is a vast expanse of space, but it is far from empty. Of course, we know of the planets, stars, suns and moons, galaxies, pulsars, quasars, black holes, nebulae, and everything else we were spoon-fed since we were kids. We sat and nodded and absorbed the information, never thinking twice about it, never questioning anything - we just wanted playtime and dibs on the Flintstone Phone. But, short of the knowledge of astrophysicists, and well beyond it as well, what if there is more?

What if. "What if" is the way you start a conversation involving a few of your drunk buddies, or a question you ask yourself as you sit in an empty apartment wishing your life had gone differently, inevitably drawing a lovely bath with soapy pink bubbles, candles, soft music and a razorblade. There's no "What if's" if you are reading this book. You have gazed into the abyss, told Nietzsche to get bent, and fought 100,000 years of human instinct to keep your mind from trying to run in two directions at once, and succeeded! Good for you! 

The fact of the matter is that there is more, much more, to the universe than we as a collective society have ever even pondered, let alone discovered. There have been plenty of clues floating about right under our noses, clues in the form of legends, superstitions, arcane texts, esotericism, and, sadly, the insane ramblings of madmen. The mind is an imperfect container. It can hold sanity or Ultimate Truth, but to add more of one, some of the other must spill out. But, since the American Psychiatric Association doesn't recognize insanity, we'll just throw the wingnuts in a little room and get on with things.

Next time you go out at night, take a glimpse up at the sky. Hopefully, it will be overcast, and one can have a false sense of security under their blanket of water vapor. But on a clear night, when there is no outside light to pollute the view of the infinite, and the stars shine and the black spaces between them seem just a bit darker than they should, tell me you don't get a small feeling of agoraphobia. Or, in the case of a Lovecraftian protagonist, faint, run away, or simply fall over dead.

In a way, we are the France of the Multiverse. When a danger looms near, and we think of our families and of our futures and of our grapes and of our long bread and berets and Daft Punk, we would sooner surrender than to face the demons that wait outside the spheres of our understanding. Who can blame us? We're only human.

Table of Contents

Did you know that Big Chief's Pocket Guide to Life was originally intended to be a book? A book written to inform and prepare the willing reader for a reality that exists in the darker parts of daily life. Some see it. Some don't see it. Some choose not to see it. But reality was never really big on being subjective.

Griffin's Pocket Guide to the Cthulhu Mythos was the idea that spawned this blog, and the greatness contained herein. I never got far with the book itself, but I thought it might be fun to share the table of contents with you. I will post a few snippets of the chapters I actually started working on too, in separate blog entries (be sure to check them out too!) And, dear reader, be sure to comment and let me know what you think!

Griffin’s Pocket Guide 

to the 

Cthulhu Mythos 

Table of Contents 

Chapter I – The True Nature of the Universe and the Inherent Disappointment Therein

Chapter II – A Brief History of Why We Are All Boned

Chapter III – God, Gods, Religion, And A Whole Lot of Oversight

Chapter IV – Arkham. The Great Freaky Shit Magnet

Chapter V – Innsmouth, Deep Ones and You

Chapter VI – Dunwich, Antarctica and Pretty Much Everywhere Else

Chapter VII – So You’re Surrounded By Mi-Go

Chapter VIII – Yithians? Hounds of Tindalos? Hitler’s Brain? Goddammit I Hate Time Travel

Chapter IX – Magic, Magick, Majik, Whatever

Chapter X – To Sleep, Perchance to Dream

Chapter XI – Bankruptcy. Ha! Get It?

Chapter XII – Graach! Zombies!

Chapter XIV – Vampires, Lycanthropy, and The Boogeyman

Chapter XV - Luck is a Bitch Goddess

Chapter XVI – The Government. Please. Don’t Make Me Laugh.

Chapter XVII – The Arboreal Conspiracy

Chapter XVIII – The Stars. They Suck. Fuck Them Being Right.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

I Shall Have 4 Children

I shall have 4 children.

My first daughter shall be named Stacy. My wife will be Stacy's mom. And she shall have it going on. My first son shall be named Luke. Then, I can say "Luke, I am your father." My second daughter shall be named Narnia. Whenever I get something for her, I shall proclaim, "For Narnia!" And my last son shall be named Sparta. Thus, when I introduce him, I shall announce, "This is Sparta."

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Schwarzenegger Returning for ‘Legend of Conan’

About a year from now, we’ll have a pretty good idea of whether or not the long-heralded return of Arnold Schwarzenegger to the silver screen was actually a good idea. But for now, fans are riding high on a wave of nostalgia at the thought of one of yesteryear’s greatest action stars making a comeback.

I was on board until Malmberg said this:

“The original ended with Arnold on the throne as a seasoned warrior, and this is the take of the film we will make… It’s that Nordic Viking mythic guy who has played the role of king, warrior, soldier and mercenary, and who has bedded more women than anyone, nearing the last cycle of his life. He knows he’ll be going to Valhalla, and wants to go out with a good battle.”

That paragraph alone destroys the character from Robert E. Howard, and bastardizes it for Hollywood by dumbing it down and making it more digestible for the masses. Conan was nothing even remotely like a "Nordic Viking" guy. He was a Cimmerian, which was loosely based on the barbarian tribes of early Europe. He became king of Aquilonia, another fictional 'kingdom' created by Howard, which could best be placed in France and southern Britain.

No matter how well Ahnuld acts, the entire thing is hinged on the story and the director. And now that we know the producer is a certifiable shill, and that the story of Conan is being written by the same jackass who wrote a movie about street racing and tough guys pulling off a heist. If 47 Ronin turns out not to be half bad, it may have a snowcone's chance in hell. But this entire situation does not bode well for Conan.

I shouldn't be surprised any more when Hollywood does this. People in the entertainment industry aren't out of touch with what people want, but they're out of touch with what they're doing. Never have I seen a person at their stupidest than when money is involved. So instead of the REH Conan pretty decently depicted in the two original films, expect to see Last Action Hero Ahnuld with a sword. Or worse. God help us if the end credits roll to Gangnam Style.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Super Hero Music Video

On July 1, 2012 PSTalent announced a video contest sponsored by PSTalent, LOOT, Sony Creative Software, and music artist Tim McMorris. This Machinima video used only the song “Super Hero” by Tim McMorris, and was filmed entirely using the LOOT active camera and the LOOT studio stage set camera, and edited using Sony Vegas. This is the video I directed, edited, and submitted.

Praise for SCarverOrne’s Super Hero Music Video:

“This was a great video submission. I love it!”
- Cynella Cyn, PS Home Gazette

“Amazed… quality of this, awesome. My new crimefighting theme song”
- Kareem Harper, Weber Shandwick

More forthcoming!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Big Chief's Survival Guide

We’ve all been there. You have just gone to a certain place, at a certain time on a certain date, done a special thing and the thing you suspected would happen has just fucking happened, not to mention the fact that you’ve just seen whatever the fuck it is that lives in your mirror, been told in detail how you’re going to die, and the highly demonic and invincible thing you summoned is heading towards you.
Also, your family are all dead, your friends are all missing and you’re being framed by someone with access to your bedroom. What the fuck do you do now, sweet protagonist

Well, you’ve come to the right place to find out: These are the simple rules one must follow in order to firstly, not become the victim of the paranormal and furthermore, to come out kicking if the worst does happen. With the help of this guide you too can be the catatonic, traumatized wreck as opposed to the guy currently being worn as a coat by some dude who roams a lot. Just keep these simple rules in mind…

1. Mirrors and darkness don’t mix.
2. Actually mirrors are a general “NO”, in Big Chief world, there is nothing more sinister.
3. There is zero chance of survival if you look at the thing that no one else can see or answer its question incorrectly.
4. If you are alone at night in a creepy mental institution, take some time to consider what the fuck are you doing there, then, if it is appropriate to do so, leave.
5. Avoid going to places where everyone else who went there never came back or died inexplicably.
6. If someone stops your vehicle at night and asks to come with you, it would probably be in your best interest to politely decline.
7. Killing is the last method of survival, use it sparingly but without fear.
8. WHO WAS PHONE is always a good thing to ponder. Also who the hell answers a phone while kissing a dead persons sexy daughter. A douche is who.
9. Get a simple .38 revolver. Load it with 2 silver bullets. If you really feel there is no chance to come alive out of a situation, take one shot at whatever’s threatening you. If this doesn’t work, you still have the last shot to shoot yourself with.
10. Government and military installations are simply too well guarded to let you get in. Or to let anything out.
11. When going to a hotel, try to steer clear of unauthorized areas. If you couldn’t resist but you saw a red thing, take some time to consider the price range and hotel standard on your next visit. Have you ever stayed at a haunted Hilton?
12. When booking your hotel stay, Trip Advisor can be an invaluable tool in deeming whether your choice is the scene of a multiple murder/full of dead people/built at the mouth of hell. Local newspapers can also be helpful.
13. Invoking demons, speaking weird languages and performing rituals of any kind is considered dangerous. Refrain from doing that, especially around abandoned warehouses, churches, psychiatric institutions, forests and your house in front of a mirror at night.
14. When going to a new area, environmental understanding is a key to survival. Ask around for cursed places, legends, dangers and other details. Listen to the local peoples’ advice, and don’t be afraid to ask if you’re unsure of which attacks/disappearances are paranormal and which aren’t.
15. Always have a Bible next to your bed. Provides average reading material, proof of beliefs and a really heavy object to throw at enemies.
16. Don’t count on holy water. Get a sturdy vial of sulfuric acid and let a priest consecrate it.
17. Japanese priests cleanse rooms by waving katana swords around. Their ritual is 100% effective on corporeal forms.
18. If you find 666 messages on your phone, mailbox, email, etc consider changing your service provider. Also, don’t bother listening to/reading the messages. It’s spam. Extra dimensional, possibly, but spam nonetheless.
19. Old pharmaceutical companies cant help you. Unless you specifically need “Blood Of The Innocent”, ”Snake Oil”, and “Radioactive Syrup”. Which is never.
20. If you need to sign it in blood, you do not need to sign it. All mainstream governing bodies will accept contracts signed in ink, bear this in mind if offered deals that seem too good to be true.
21. Lighthouses are dangerous. Avoid them at all costs. If you work at a lighthouse consider a career in insurance sales, or veterinary care.
22. There is simply no reason to listen to music that causes suicidal tendencies, or to watch films that have had strange/disastrous consequences.
23. If you like to plan ahead and have some money, buy your auntie and uncle a house in Bel-Air. Nothing can harm you there no matter how scared your mother is.
24. Secret secluded untouched places in old buildings are left untouched for a reason. Pioneers never say “die” but in fact they do have an unusually high mortality rate.
25. Before you start swimming in the ice-cold waters of a murky lake at the center of a dark forest at midnight, ask yourself, do you really want to travel to an ancient and terrifying city? If the answer is “no,” then stay at home instead, and watch whatever quality programming is available on Cinemax.
26. On your 33rd birthday try celebrating in a well lit house with the company of others.
27. Refrain from using the one true name for anything, there is probably a reason people gave it a nickname.
28. Watching tv static for long periods may be hazardous to your health, try satellite tv to combat this problem.
29. Get a cat. Those furry little hairballs seem to perceive unnatural phenomena better than us, and if desperate, simply throw it at whatever is about to get you.
30. Cemeteries are bad places, especially in foggy conditions and on Halloween.
31. Try not to close your eyes. Ever. If you must, do so only briefly.
32. If you hear chanting, run until you are out of earshot.
33. If you are too old to play with dolls, you do not need to be anywhere near one of the creepy little fuckers.
34. Legends can offer valuable insight of where not to go camping with friends.
35. When babysitting, ascertain the family’s tastes and preferences, to avoid being killed by poorly selected statues.
36. Even if you are certain that running will not save you, it is always best to try.

Follow these simple rules and little (or massive) harm may befall you. Either way, the important thing is to make sure your friends buy a copy of my book.