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They call me Steambard?

disgruntledbard

Welding goggles, gears, airship captains, gears, old clothes, and gears.  If you’re confused, I’m talking about Steampile, er sorry, Steampunk.  Wikipedia says:

Steampunk is a genre which originated during the 1980s and early 1990s and incorporates elements of science fiction, fantasy, alternate history, horror, and speculative fiction. It involves a setting where steam power is widely used—whether in an alternate history such as Victorian era Britain or “Wild West“-era United States, or in a post-apocalyptic time —that incorporates elements of either science fiction or fantasy. Works of steampunk often feature anachronistictechnology, or futuristic innovations as Victorians might have envisioned them, based on a Victorian perspective on fashion, culture, architectural style, and art. This technology includes such fictional machines as those found in the works of H. G. Wells and Jules Verne, or the contemporary authors Philip…

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They call me Steambard?

Welding goggles, gears, airship captains, gears, old clothes, and gears.  If you’re confused, I’m talking about Steampile, er sorry, Steampunk.  Wikipedia says:

Steampunk is a genre which originated during the 1980s and early 1990s and incorporates elements of science fiction, fantasy, alternate history, horror, and speculative fiction. It involves a setting where steam power is widely used—whether in an alternate history such as Victorian era Britain or “Wild West“-era United States, or in a post-apocalyptic time —that incorporates elements of either science fiction or fantasy. Works of steampunk often feature anachronistic technology, or futuristic innovations as Victorians might have envisioned them, based on a Victorian perspective on fashion, culture, architectural style, and art. This technology includes such fictional machines as those found in the works of H. G. Wells and Jules Verne, or the contemporary authors Philip Pullman, Scott Westerfeld and China Mieville.

Other examples of steampunk contain alternative history-style presentations of such technology as lighter-than-air airships, analog computers, or such digital mechanical computers as Charles Babbage and Ada Lovelace‘s Analytical Engine.  -Wikipedia

In other words, Steampunk is something no intelligent human will ever be able to find any reason or sanity in.  Victorian-era dress with gears, gears, and of course, more gears.  Some just wear a pair of welding goggles which makes you a steamboat captain(?) or an asshole, depending on where you wear them.  The purveyors of this “movement”, or better – passing oddity, spend most of their time just attaching gears, pipes, and clock parts onto their possessions.  Hat?  Sew gears onto it.  Guitar?  Screw gears onto it.  Computer?  Glue gears and pipes onto it, but still plug it into the outlet?  Go figure.  Dog?  Hang a pocket watch around his neck.  Anyway, it’s simple – now your stuff is steampunked out!  Now meet at the mall or convention center with no purpose and talk about everyone’s creative use of gears, pipes, and glue.  Same goes for Cosplay, just swap out the interest in Victorian clothes, gears, and pipes for Japanese school-girl outfits, a taste for pop, and an unhealthy obsession with bukkake and tentacle rape.  Cosplay!  (But we’ll save that beast for another day.)

I had resisted this monstrosity, and much shit had flung forth from my mouth about it until I realized – “I am envious of the Steampilers because they have their own deal – community, welding goggles, belonging, and gears… while I often just wander around semi-gin-blitzed, lonely, and pessimistic.”  I knew that I wanted to give this thing a shot.  Don’t knock it ’til you try it, “they” say…

I began at a moderate pace, knowing that  at the age of 30, I had to play catch-up.  Night 1 – I watched Hellboy and smoked household chemicals in a meerschaum pipe.  I missed the movie entirely, but thought about gears for some time.  Night 2 – I almost drowned tonight wearing a frilly shirt and welders goggles in my bath, after watching 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.  This movie was terrible.  Night 3 –  I funneled a pint of Evan Williams and watched Wild Wild West while wearing nothing but a top hat.  I am now confused as to what really happened “out west” and my appreciation of Will Smith formerly standing at 2%, dropped by 75%.  He is officially lower on the totem than Danny Devito, though still higher than Eddie Murphy.  Night 4 – I cannot handle another terrible movie.  My method is an absolute failure.

Having failed miserably at my attempt to attain a certain Steampile enlightenment in 3 nights, I decided to take the simple path and just devise an outfit to wear to the mall.  It was rather basic:  A top hat, with gears.  Airship captain welder’s goggles with “optional monacle-thingie” (Don’t blame me, it’s what they said on Etsy.)  1 – frilly shirt.  I could not afford good Victorian trousers, so I cut a hole in my pants, and ran a chromed GTO exhaust pipe from my rectum, right out the hole.  It puffed smoke every 7-8 seconds, no questions please –  (I am seeking a patent).  Anyway, I did easily come around to the idea of sewing gears onto everything.  This passion came about around the same time that I smoked that fragile (yet flavorful) pipe.  Hell, I sewed or glued them onto everything I owned.  One day I saw my grandmother, sad and sitting alone, and I knew I must do something.  Even at 86, and with advanced Alzheimer’s, I found no reason why she shouldn’t feel better about herself by implementing a few hip Steampile techniques.  I outfitted her in black pants, a frilly white shirt, and some welder’s goggles.  I sewed several gears onto her shirt – and looking good thus far, continued.  Long story short, she looked like a beautiful, somewhat old, robot by the time I was finished.  She fell asleep, but I knew she was impressed and finally happy.  I sold her on Etsy several days later as a handmade steampile item, though the buyer complained about the shipping.

Hitting the mall –  My entrance did grant spectacle, but no respect.  Most just walked around sipping organic fluids and looking at me in disgust.  The others had no idea I was there.  I overheard some teenage girls commenting on my greying hair, and calling me Eldersteam.  One guy approached me, finding me to be in outright disrespect to the “scene” based on my usage of the ’68 GTO pipe.  (Mind you, he had no problem that I was dragging several pounds of chromed muscle car glory straight from my back door.)  I casually explained that Pontiac produced inferior products during the Victorian age.  I argued with him for some time before realizing I was trying to reason with a man in a top hat, a jet pack, and toting a non-firing homemade “ray-gun”.  As I turned to walk away from this dork, a young robot-looking thing stuffed a hand-full of popcorn into my tail pipe, completely ruining it’s smoke effect.  To hell with all of this!  I walked out at a good pace, my tail pipe creating small sparks on its way across the asphalt…

Damned Steam-people!   I stood there alone on a sidewalk, smoking my meerschaum pipe for some time.  I smiled and waved at a passing car.  The 20 oz. Coke that flew out of the car’s window actually hurt me less than the howling laughter that came from every passenger.  The bottle broke one of my goggle lenses out, and knocked my pipe out of my mouth and down my shirt, scorching my nipples and chest beard.  I flailed around and shook the pipe out, watching it shatter on the pavement.  They didn’t care though… the Steamfolk.  They were too busy inside, talking about gears and the modification of welder’s goggles.  Bastards.  It’s never right to attack or make fun of someone just for looking like a deranged asshole, but I realized that dressing like this is a possible hazard to your physical well-being outside of an event.  I jumped on my scooter to head home.  No acceptance at all – well, not for the Bard anyway.  I’ll find my place one day…  Sorry to cut this thing short, but I need to unwedge this pipe and try to buy my grandmother back.

Fashionable Baseball Bard?

http://parisinthemidwest.com/2012/05/17/seventh-inning-stretch/

Sorry people – after looking at this shit pile I think, maybe, I am headed in the wrong direction?  I will try my best to attend a sporting event in the near future, and show you what I wore to the event.  I will also try to stack my books in a yuppie coffee table heap for all to see.  Unintelligible fare that luckily went unread, and will forever more sit undisturbed – well, until dusting day.  I find this to be an ignorant and undeserving parade.  Some clothing designers have talent, you simply got dressed.  Congratulations.  Another sad case of what I can afford equals what I am worth.  Not true.  But isn’t the second-hand celebration so much easier than the effort to actually produce something?  I will try to find my ego in others’ success from here on, but expecting my demise in the atmosphere, offer my apologies in advance.

Doomsday is nigh…

In all reality, I had no fear of December 21, 2012… until I saw people preparing for December 21, 2012.  Through programs such as Doomsday Preppers and other random high-brow survivalist fare that is being broadcast on National Geographic, I have come to know the fear.  It is real, and I am here to give you the heads up.  You’re welcome.

Preparing for doomsday.  It is a growing lifestyle here in the US.  It is mostly comprised of poor, crazy, white people who could not comprehend the complexities of Dr. Seuss.  However, they are usually more than ready to explain the Book of Revelations to anyone dumb enough to listen, or too immobile to escape… go figure.  They abandon all hopes, dreams, hobbies, etc. to collect canned food, water, and guns.  “So what?” you say.  “Sounds like normal activities for them.”  Well, my friend, this is just the beginning…

They have taken up such activities as hiding in bunkers eating ramen noodle everyday, learning “people hunting”, setting trip wires around their homes, eating 30-year old horse meat from mason jars, raising tilapia in backyard pools, making their children do gas-mask drills, and scaring the elderly, children, and animals by jumping out of homemade foxholes in full ghillie suits.  One man was brought to the survivalist lifestyle through acid trips, not surprising.  Another lady said basically:  I’ll be well fed while everyone else gets skinny.  I’ve got plenty of food stocked up.  What an asshole.  Also, this woman looked as if she was “well-fed” already and would have killed over from a basic aerobic course, and she’s preparing for nuclear warfare?  Good luck.

Yet, while they prepare for ultimate survival, they appear to be suffering from life itself.  Most of them are driving cars with mismatched doors, or old pickups with V8s so large they are definitely drinking away a major chunk of canned-food money.  Concerning yourself with surviving a catastrophe, when you are barely surviving as it is?  Maybe it’s just a form of escapism.  I do not claim to know.  I do know however, that the children look beaten down at 7-8 years old.  They cringe and look terrified as nutty old Dad shows ’em how to “far” an AK-47, pistol, or other implement of death.  They try to look normal sitting in a burlap shirt eating crickets that good ol’ Dad and homely, stupid, down-trodden Mom gave them.  They try to smile (as kids should do) while suffering from an environment of ignorance, paranoia, and neglect – due to crazed priorities set by crazy parents.  So, I wish these kids well.  I hope that one day they are able to laugh and play hide and seek on the lawn, without a family member jumping out to disembowel them while they’re tangled in trip wire.  If you really think our world is that doomed, why did you bring innocent children into the picture in the first place?  Oh, I gotcha… amongst all the crazy shit you can plan for, I guess buying condoms was too complicated?  Or maybe you tried to make them at home out of plastic wrap and a rubber band?  Good call.

So, where does this leave us?  Well, it leaves us “normal”, somewhat sane, peace-seeking people in an awkward situation.  Trust me.  When 12-21-12 passes and these crazies are left safely hiding behind a tree… they are going to be mad as hell.  If you decide to tell them that Mayans are “south of the border”, oh, better you than me.  Whatever, when they realize that all the money that could have been spent on Nascar tickets, 80’s band reunion shows, bottom shelf whiskey, lottery tickets, muscle shirts, etc. has been blown on canned food and gas masks!?  We will all soon suffer the reality of armed men in full ghillie suits jumping out at us on the bread aisle of Wal-Mart, men in Mad Max gear in a ’68 Ranger tearing through our front lawn demanding women, gasoline, and glue; and of course shooting excess ammo at anything that can walk, stagger, or roll.  And then tack on their poor, dumb, probably barefoot and pregnant wives staggering around the streets asking anyone and everyone for direction and purpose in life?  Dear God… we’re all in for it.  Much less our local grocers repossessing and reselling that old canned food to offset gas prices for shipping?  We’ll all be sick and crazy before it’s over.

The terror is real… and it will not come from the Mayan prophecy, but from the preppers.  Prep yourselves people.  Prep for the preppers.  We’re all going to face a whole new level of crazy.  Feel the fear…