Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Tale of the Fairy Great-Grand-Godmother

nce upon a time, two children were lost in the greenwood.  Well, not so much "lost" as, "told to stay outside and stop watching so much TV already."

They grew up. Or so they said. But the adventure did not end quite yet.

One day, while sitting at their "computers," using Google chat, they accidentally invoked a supernatural being of mischievous mien and unfathomable intent, which has been interfering with the two children in subtle and not-so-subtle ways ever since. And here is how it went.

Now, as we all know, names have power. In olden times, when people were wiser even though they didn't have Google, a man would never allow anyone to know his true name. Nicknames like "Butch" or "You, With the Head" were commonplace, but a true name was kept secret. With knowledge of a name, a witch or elven changeling might gain power over a man (or woman, or mythical woodland creature, whatever). Thus, in their primitive, yet-to-be-beGoogled world, our predecessors had some understanding of the power of words-- knowledge melodramatically and with great foreshadowing aforethought, lost.

But the two "children," who ought to have known better, thought words were cheap. They could blog for free! And don't get me started on Facebook. They could force near-strangers into their obsessions with such frivolities as tea, and stupid pictures of LOLcats, and overly descriptive recipes, and obscure references to childhood memories, and gleeful crowing over one another's infrequent but amusing grammar mistakes.

But the true trouble began when the two, who ought to have known better, as I think I mentioned earlier, began to use Google Chat. Yes, this diabolical device allowed two people with near-preternatural typing skillz to share their thoughts nearly as fast as they could think them. (And thank you, Anne Rice, for adding that ridiculous word, preternatural, to our vocabulary.) Without their conscious knowledge, the siblings' minds were being inexorably forced closer together, being shaped by a shadowy being whose influence was only just beginning to be felt.

As the children (whom we shall call Butch and You, With the Head) were trading parts of their brains while they complained about their children, or their students, or laughed about people with such unlikely yet well-earned names as "Doofenschmertz," the fateful moment neared. Back and forth the neurons flowed, riding on 0s and 1s and electrons. Faster and faster they typed their bemusement, without a thought of the dreadful consequence about to befall them for their hubris. "Oh," they thought, "there is no harm in these nonsensical meanderings. Ha, ha! That wicked princess totally deserved to marry in2 the Dukedom of Doofenschmertz. Don't u think?! What a bee-yotch."

And then, as the consequence for their treatment of language as a mere plaything, their minds reached a parallax, and they simultaneously typed the same highly unlikely, never-heard-before, nigh-unto-statistically impossible phrase, "our Fairy Great-Grand-Godmother."

Watch out for the shifty old lady.
Halt. Full stop. Caesura. Selah. Knock it off already. Did Butch and YWtH really both type that at the same time? That impossible phrase? And, to put a finer point on it, that same name?


From that moment, with increasingly disturbing regularity, they found that they were typing, and hitting "SEND" at the same time, ever more unlikely thoughts in kreepi tandem. Neologisms were popping up on Google Chat at the same time. Odd in-jokes, such as, "Cushions embroidered with purple spiders." "STOP IT." "Zimbabwe." "NOW I'M GETTING SCARED." Annoying things about Peter Rabbit. Etymology of Yiddish swear words. Explications of why the word, kumquat, is funny. Over, and over, and over.

Butch and You, With the Head surmised that the unintentional but potent invocation must have traveled through the √¶ther, the magical space-between-spaces we call the Internet (where is the Internet, anyway?), and a little-known but mischievous spirit was loosed upon the world. Their Fairy Great-Grand-Godmother had arrived with unlikely coincidences in her wake.

They should have known better.

And so now, with great trepidation, the two ought-to-finally-grow-up idiot brother and sister repeatedly approached Google Chat, knowing that some unlikely turn of phrase never before uttered would arise in both minds at once, and then they'd hit that deadly "SEND" button to further weave the incantation of power their Fairy Great-Grand-Godmother was, um, incanting. Was she merely playing a game with her cantankerous Great-Grand-Godchildren? Or was this some wicked plot to finally enable them to do what they do every night: to Try to Take Over the World?

I'd go with the latter, but I'm still hoping for radically unlikely happenstance.



Or is it? Bwa-ha-ha-ha. [shudder]

[Kate here:  ACK! You've released this on the unwitting public?  Are you MAD?  Unpossible!]

Kate here again.  Please read the following G-Chat conversation starting with discussion of the above post:


thehappykate: ja
just responded to yoru response.
slknoerr: NOT CORRECT. Because minutes can be subdivided, they can be LESS.
thehappykate: your
NO.
nonono
slknoerr: o yes, indeed
thehappykate: minutes can be COUNTED
therefore, fewer
slknoerr: anything can be counted, but not everything can be subdivided
without a chainsaw
thehappykate: But I have a chainsaw.
slknoerr: Well, then everything should be "less" for you.
thehappykate: But I have a chainsaw, therefore I will simply defend myself and my choice with it.
slknoerr: "I want less people to be here. Specifically, I want less of you."
Too bad you don't have an extension cord.
thehappykate: Hm. You may be right.
I DO. It's 50 feet
slknoerr: How many feet do I live away from you, again?
thehappykate: I could keep unplugging it and advancing.
slknoerr: I'm like Foghorn Leghorn, being attacked by the dog on the leash. Untouchable.
thehappykate: Until someone drops a piano.
slknoerr: So you'd just keep plugging in at gas stations on the way? Like if you were driving a Leaf?
thehappykate: Yes.
slknoerr: Very scary idea. You could make a horror movie.
thehappykate: But not a Prius. Because they don't stop.
slknoerr: Ever
They run on damned souls.
That's how they get such great mileage.
thehappykate: Whoa.
slknoerr: (by the way, did you get the accent on the second syllable of damned? very post-postmodern literateur of me, I thought)
thehappykate: Priuses are the Official Pacecar of Hell
YES!
slknoerr: They are in the second ring of hell, which is the race course.
It's been certified.
It's where urban hipsters go when they die, condemned to eternal NASCAR races
and Budweiser 
thehappykate: bwahahaa
slknoerr: it's where the monster trucks are REAL monsters.
Did you just unplug your chainsaw and get 50 feet closer to me? I sense a disturbance in the Force
thehappykate: that was just gas
slknoerr: I hate it when you have gas, and it disturbs the Force
maybe you should try less exotic recipes
thehappykate: fewer

slknoerr: YOU'RE STILL WRONG

People:  You are witnessing our kreepi LIVE.  It happened again.  I ... can barely type this.  If you scroll down a few posts, you will see that Steve POSTED THE SAME EXACT CONVERSATION at the SAME EXACT TIME.  
We did not PLAN this.  I... am nearly hyperventilating with weirdness.  CALL A PRIEST!  CALL A SHAMAN!  CALL HELOISE!  Somebody please!  HELP! 




Steven here. I hereby append more of the conversation. Now you know the uncanny force of which we speak. READ ON AT YOUR OWN PERIL.


me: There are plenty of people who have better grammar than I have. You're just not one of them. Ptthtttptttpbbb.
thehappykate: Ptthhhhbob.
me: bob?
thehappykate: that's what I thought you had written
me: I have nothing against Bob, and I do not include his name in my raspberries.
thehappykate: racist
OH. Go read your fairytale
Sent at 11:33 AM on Tuesday
me: and you may wish to look at your correction of my grammar
thehappykate: um. ok?
me: YAAAAAAAAAH!
IT'S HAPPENING AGAIN
thehappykate: yaah?
WHAT?
where?
me: LOOK AT THE BLOG. SCROLL DOWN.
QUELLE HORREUR
thehappykate: I posted that. what are you talking about?
me: I just posted the same exact thing at exactly the same time, just on a different post in the blog
thehappykate: O. NO
me: In other words, I just cut-and-pasted this conversation, as you were doing the same thing.
thehappykate: HAHAHHAAAA
that is hilarious
me: FAIRY GREAT-GRAND-GODMOTHER IS ON THE CASE AGAIN
thehappykate: and ....
ok. please write a NEW post explaining this
me: kreepi x100
I'll let you append this. It'll be more postmodern that way.
Just add to the bottom of the cut-and-paste job you did earlier.
thehappykate: ok. one sec.
me: that is just so over the top, I hardly know what to think.
Sent at 11:39 AM on Tuesday
me: Honestly, if I had been born in an earlier century, I'd burn us both as witches, or I'd call in a priest to exorcise our medieval computers.
Sent at 11:40 AM on Tuesday
thehappykate: done
Sent at 11:41 AM on Tuesday
me: and... my comment above is almost the same comment you wrote on the blog.

thehappykate: ACK.
I feel compelled by the forces of good and/or evil to end this Gmail chat session.
Due to the extreme likelihood of one of us being flung into an alternate reality.
OH! That MUST be why you're so weird.
AND? You have a goatee.
PROOF!
me: QED. And it's time for me to put baby to bed so I can get some work done and stop getting the willies. The evil willies.
thehappykate: Go shave your goatee.
xo








[STEVE HERE: AND ONE FINAL UPDATE ON THE WEIRDNESS. ONCE I PUT BABY DOWN FOR A NAP, I CALLED OUR MOM TO TELL HER OF THIS FAIRLY HILARIOUS BIT OF UNINTENTIONAL WEIRDNESS. AND SHE SAID, "YES, I JUST SPOKE TO KATE, AND SHE TOLD ME ALL ABOUT IT. I DIDN'T KNOW I HAD TWINS THREE YEARS APART."]

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