Tag Archives: chicken

100 Rules of Time Travel

Time is weird.  Time Travel is dangerous.  That’s why the 100 rules of Time Travel were first written when Washington Irving traveled through time to his future year of 1887.  Now, in honor of My Name is Ward Armstrong and I Travel Through Time going up on Amazon for public viewing, I give to you the 100 rules of time travel:

  1. Never wear a watch; it might explode.
  2. You can change the past.
  3. The farther back you go, the more likely it is that you won’t come back.
  4. Always announce yourself as a time traveler: At worst you’ll be committed to that era’s version of a Mental Health Ward, at best you’ll be treated to a feast of sugar plums!
  5. We are, all of us, constantly traveling through time.  It is only those trained, though, that should move forward more than a day or backward at all.
  6. When interacting with locals from the time you’re in, just smile and nod.  This will put them at ease.
  7. Always carry gold.
  8. Time is relative, manners are not.  Please be respectful.
  9. The farther you go, the greater a headache you’ll have afterwards.  Be sure to get plenty of rest and take vitamin capsules.
  10. Keep track of all your belongings, there are thieves where you’ll go.
  11. Always carry a coin from your time with you; that will let you know of any changes to the timeline.
  12. Some time around the year 7603 AD mankind will break off into distinctly different species: The Eloi who will be telepathic and super-intelligent but have massively reduced lifespans, the Morlocks who will live for 800 years with skin of steel but be dull and brutish, and the Poporopos who will have five tentacles, four eyes, and will sleep inside of clocks eating away at the “tick tock tick” sound they make.
  13. Do not travel beyond 7.9 billion years on Earth, the Sun would have engulfed the planet by then and there would be nothing to land on.
  14. Bring sunglasses with you, the future is bright.
  15. Always consult your history book before traveling.
  16. Killing Hitler always seems like a good idea, but it rarely is.  We’re sorry.
  17. You can, however, go back in time and punch or kick Hitler a few times.  This is, in fact, widely encouraged.
  18. Remember where you parked.
  19. Keep your TimeKeys™ with you at all times.
  20. Have fun with time puns!  Just because you may be trying to stop the apocalypse doesn’t mean you can’t make a joke.
  21. When traveling through time always keep your person inside of the time machine.
  22. Personal history is easier to change than world history.
  23. Do not bring any future technology back with you.
  24. The farther backwards in time you travel the greater the number of things you shouldn’t touch is.  Even one butterfly stepped on could have catastrophic changes in your present.
  25. Always say goodbye to loved ones before traveling through time. They may not be there when you come back.
  26. Know how to make a fire: It keeps you warm and scares off Moorlocks.
  27. Have plenty of ice packs with you.  They keep you cool and scare off Eloi.
  28. Have plenty of dry saltine crackers with you.  They keep you fed, and scare off Poporopos (The crunching of crackers disrupt their precious clock sound).
  29. History’s greatest monster is Oliver Wilmingfordshire II.  he lived from 1837-1887 and never left his palatial estate in Essex.  This must always be so
  30. If ever you come into contact with Wilmingfordshire nod as he talks about the numerous deer he’s killed and beheaded and how the poor are starving England to the core.  If you don’t, he will kill you.  He WILL kill you.
  31. Genghis Khan has some serious issues.
  32. Do not bring anything back with you.  The Time Travel Process has a built-in de-germifying process, but make sure to shake off any loose mud, bugs, or people.
  33. There are creatures who live in time: Do not destroy any of their time-nests.
  34. Do not enter into any time-preserves without proper documentation and authorization.
  35. Always keep your personal identification and travel papers on your person, you never know when you’ll need them.
  36. Technology is not always reliable, paper is.
  37. If any time travelers want to talk to you about time travel that is their choice and you should oblige.
  38. If any locals want to talk to you about time travel- outside of your initial introduction- the accepted response is to smile and wink saying “Time will tell”.
  39. Do not crash your time machine. You only get one.
  40. March 9, 1982 is the friendliest place around!
  41. The world will end.  This is sad, but true.
  42. Don’t Panic.
  43. Numbers have been traveling through time since memory first began.
  44. Stay hydrated!
  45. During peak times, travel may be limited.  Always consult your local time travel agent.
  46. It is dangerous to travel through time without a machine and will often result in being unable to recognize time at all.
  47. You can go back in time to kill your rival’s grandfather, but it’s a real dick move.
  48. Don’t be surprised of any physical changes you may undergo, it’s all part of the adventure!
  49. Sometimes you will return to your time to find out that you are now two or more people.  It is recommended you all sit down and chat, or perhaps start a book club.
  50. You cannot change the past.
  51. Take care when visiting your parents in the past, they won’t always be happy to see you.
  52. If you find yourself kidnapped by The Government, start stringing together words that sound scientific and they will let you go.
  53. Never bring sports almanacs into the past.
  54. Always bring farmers’ almanacs into the past.
  55. It is up to your personal discretion whether or not to bring Poor Richard’s Almanac into the past.  Be warned, however, it is illegal to own it in the 23rd century.
  56. The 23rd Century is a fine place so long as you have gold (please refer to Rule #7).
  57. All things must die, this includes disco.
  58. There are more than one assassin that shoots JFK. It’s fun target practice to go back and try to get them all!
  59. Interacting with yourself creates a paradox.
  60. Paradoxes are dangerous, please avoid them.
  61. Paradoxes are dangerous, please avoid them.
  62. Paradoxes are dangerous, please avoid them.
  63. Paradoxes are dangerous, please avoid them.
  64. Paradoxes are dangerous, please avoid them.
  65. Paradoxes are dangerous, please avoid them.
  66. Paradoxes are dangerous, please avoid them.
  67. Paradoxes are dangerous, please avoid them.
  68. Paradoxes are dangerous, please avoid them.
  69. Paradoxes are dangerous, please avoid them.
  70. Paradoxes are dangerous, please avoid them.
  71. Déjá Vu is Time’s way of telling you you’re doing something wrong.
  72. Stay away from your grandparents, it’s just easier that way.
  73. To escape a Time Loop, simply think to yourself “What Would American Physicist Joseph Polchinski Do?”. Nine times out of Ten the answer will be “Go in at 75 degrees”.
  74. There is no traveling on Groundhog Day.
  75. Seriously you can’t kill Hitler, we’ve tried. A lot of times, we’ve tried. We’re sorry. Really, really sorry. But you can’t kill Hitler.
  76. Boots are a comfortable, practical, and fashionable way to solve your temporal footwear woes.
  77. The Past wants to happen, all you have to do is watch it happen.
  78. Keep a detailed log of everything that’s ever happened to you at all times.
  79. Ludwig von Beethoven never existed.  It is therefore imperative that, when traveling between the years 1770 and 1827 that you mention Beethoven and how great a composer he was as often as you can.
  80. Time is linear, every instant causes the next.
  81. Time is circular, every instant causes the next until the last instant causes the first.
  82. Time is spiral-shaped, every instant causes another instant and sometimes these instants are the same instant piled on top of itself.
  83. Time is shaped like a Möbius strip, it moves multi-dimensionally but always ends up at the same instant.
  84. Time is shaped like a fractal with no true starting instant and no true ending instant but rather a lattice-like interlocking of all instants occurring simultaneously with each one looking the exact same.
  85. Time is like that closet that you shove everything into: there is no shape, there is no organization, but if you remove or change one instant everything will come crashing down and spill everywhere.
  86. Time is also like the closet that you shove everything into because the damn cat will always find a way inside.
  87. It’s useful to think of time like a book: You can go back to the beginning and re-read chapters to get a better idea but the act of re-reading them does not change the words that were written.
  88. It’s also useful to think about time like a book because if you skip ahead you may get some useful information, but more often than not you’ll be very confused without the proper context.
  89. Time is not, however, a book.  Books are books and if you are confused on this topic you should consult your local library.
  90. Time is like molasses: hard to move through, impossible to change the shape of (as it has no definitive shape), sweet in an earthy sort of way, and an important ingredient for making cookies!
  91. Fun Fact: Bees can’t travel in time!
  92. You can’t use time travel to make people fall in love with you. I understand that now, Diane, and I’m really sorry.
  93. Chickens understand more about time travel than any human ever will. When in doubt: Ask a chicken!
  94. Never travel when sick.
  95. If you ever have to explain time travel to a pastling, just draw a bunch of lines on a chalkboard.
  96. If you find yourself in a military facility, yelling at the guards won’t make them like you.  Instead, try drawing a bunch of lines on a chalkboard.
  97. If- God forbid- you run into your Grandparents, it’s best if you start speaking very quickly while drawing a bunch of lines on a chalkboard.
  98. When in doubt, draw lines on a chalkboard.
  99. Keep a detailed log of everything that’s ever happened to you at all times.
  100. Déjá Vu is Time’s way of telling you you’re doing something wrong.

D for Durashadu, E for Epikris, and F for Forsberg

We’ve got a trio of mountain stories this month!  Starting with the first entry about one of the Gods of the Golden Ice-Cream city of Zard: A lobster that has diamond claws and made the moon.

D for Durashadu

Next up is the story about a city that was swallowed by a mountain, and more proof of Zeus being a complete jerk.

E for Epikris

Finally a tall tale about Ollie Forsberg, who met Zebulon Pike, the Unsinkable Molly Brown, and was even had a buddy cop relationship with Buffalo Bill.

F for Forsberg

100 Chicken Names

  1. Gertie
  2. Heimlich
  3. Carbuncle
  4. Alfred Hitchbock
  5. Zebulon
  6. Erlenmeyer
  7. Orson
  8. Pietro
  9. Mortimer
  10. Dortimer
  11. Gortimer
  12. Commander Sulu
  13. La Llorona
  14. Robert Bockenheimer
  15. Vorhees
  16. Calusari
  17. Dongle
  18. Featherbreath
  19. Mustafa
  20. Salieri
  21. Kjuklinger

  22. Oilasco

  23. Yuki-onna

  24. Cluck Bruckman / Clyde Bockman

  25. Nonono

  26. Nanana

  27. Hephasteus

  28. Somorost

  29. Vanderbleit

  30. Adarna

  31. Alkenost
  32. Kharkatak
  33. Hoodwink
  34. Wingmar Bergman / Ingmar Birdman
  35. 1973 New York Mining Disaster
  36. Kaddish
  37. Chicory
  38. Ballyhoo
  39. Vuvuzela
  40. Corsica
  41. Calliban
  42. Tyblat
  43. Gillygaloo
  44. Heny Lamarr
  45. Sampson
  46. Prometheus
  47. Nausicaa
  48. Moebius
  49. Escher
  50. Asher
  51. Wexler
  52. Winkler
  53. Baku
  54. Jackson Pollo
  55. Kura
  56. Arcadia
  57. Oberon
  58. Titania
  59. Hellion
  60. Cronos
  61. Roc
  62. Ziz
  63. Fenghuang
  64. Frida Clucko
  65. Yoruba
  66. Goldberg
  67. Apollo
  68. Beagle
  69. Joan of Arc
  70. Stella
  71. Klondike
  72. Usurper
  73. Grootslang
  74. Pearl S. Cluck
  75. Mastroianni
  76. Empendocles
  77. Marcello
  78. Azaroth
  79. Mercury
  80. Banquo
  81. Claudius
  82. Ophelia
  83. Basilisk
  84. Barbu Stanwick
  85. Vincent Gallo
  86. Audrey
  87. Paul F. Tompkins
  88. Ichabod
  89. Fyodor
  90. Ursula
  91. Mycroft
  92. Fermat
  93. Tengu
  94. Henry Houdani
  95. Irving
  96. The Were-Monster
  97. Vonnegut
  98. Ada Lovelace
  99. Mary Shelley
  100. Curiosity

Introduction and A for Atlas

As part of a writing warm-up/rabbit hole/new years project/idea machine I’ve decided to begin working on writing an Encyclopedia.  Not just any encyclopedia, but an encyclopedia on things that do not, nor ever will, exist.  The plan is from now until the end of the year, every two weeks I’ll come up with a new entry.  For now, here is the introduction and the “A” entry.  Enjoy.

 

Introduction

 

So I’ve decided on a bit of a “House of Leaves” set-up for this, mostly to explore options of what I can do after finishing it all this year.  We’ll see how it all turns out, but let me know (as always) of any ideas or thoughts you have regarding it.

 

A for Atlas

A Study in Brown

This one is an old video, from maybe a year ago so not too old, that I had thought I uploaded here but apparently I didn’t!  So here it is now, A Study in Brown:

A Study in Brown from Vvinni Gagnepain on Vimeo.

I like to see my data bending work as gradually improving, and this marked the point where I was confident in creating these bent images, and wanted to begin pushing the boundaries further.  So For “A Study in Brown”, I not only had numerous versions of the main chick video on top of each other, but I also had a separate, also brown, video that was overlayed of sand falling (both videos were taken during a visit to the Museum of Science and Industry here in Chicago).  I think it’s a successful experiment and a good mile-marker for me as a growing experimental artist.

As an actual film to be seen online?  Eh, I’d put among my “Cat Video”, as something to watch keeping in mind that it’s an experiment.  A fuller experiment than my other bends, but still an experiment.  I do think the Brazillian Jazz adds a much more relaxed feeling than some other works, and mimics well the sleepiness of the chicks seen beneath the fraying video, and so perhaps this is all a way of visualizing the fraying of reality as a chick goes to sleep and enters the dream world?  Or maybe I’m just reaching too far.  I leave it to you, Comments!

100 Comic Book Items

With Marvel and DC Comics dominating our airwaves, I’m sure we’re all a bit worried: What if we ever run out of comics to adapt, re-adapt, de-adapt, and dark reboot?  What would happen to cinema and TV?  Will we be launched into a dark age where we’re stuck only adapting, re-adapting, de-adapting, and dark rebooting paperback novels?  NONSENSE!

Don’t worry, citizens of Earth, because I’ve included below a list of 100 Character, organizations, and other artifacts from comic book universes that are now free for anyone to adapt.  Please. Go ahead, Marvel and DC, begin fighting over these character rights.  I’ll be anxiously waiting by my phone.

  1. The Luminaut: Controller of light
  2. The Rulemaker, Manipulative and vengeful.
  3. Patrick Stonewall, P.I
  4. Mittens: The Super-strong
  5. The Blank Slate, bulletproof and unfeeling
  6. Mute: The Sound-eater.
  7. Uriel, rewarder and destroyer.
  8. Comm. William Tsang: Steven Seagal with an army.
  9. Siemen: The One with the Silicon Arm
  10. The Agromancer: Diviner of Grass and Weeds
  11. The Cockroach, able to multiply ad infinitum.
  12. Brightside: The Eternal Optimist.
  13. Oddball, bringer of chaos.
  14. Sturm: Bringer of irrationality.
  15. Drang: Revealer of fear.
  16. Monofilament: Casts invisible fishing lines.
  17. Catalyst, amplifying those around him.
  18. Gorbachev!: Mikhail Gorbachev in a cape and mask.
  19. Davy Weitz, showman and magician.
  20. C.L.O.W.N: Central Legislature for the Oligarchy of Western Nebraska
  21. Clay Mason: Able to conjure up animated beings of clay.
  22. Pulvis: Creator of Dust
  23. B.R.I.P,  Bio-Robotic Information Processor; Human Brain robotic calculations.
  24. Flummox: She was hit in the head with a magical comet and now her power is to be really confusing.
  25. The Felimancer: They talk to cats.  The cats probably understand, but they don’t always obey because they’re cats.  Mostly, it’s just a person with a lot of cats. A whole lot of cats.
  26. T.E.R.N: Tactical Enforcement of Retro-Nihilism
  27. Derrick Matts: He has no powers of his own, but he knows exactly how everyone else should use their superpowers.
  28. The Caped Kennedy: A Kennedy who wears a JFK mask and a t-shirt that reads “Kiss me, I’m a Kennedy”. Oh, and they can also shoot lasers out of their eyes. To this day no one knows the true identity of the Caped Kennedy, nor are they sure if he’s even a Kennedy.
  29. Ignia, the fireball.
  30. The Corrugator: She creates cardboard boxes… WITH HER MIND.
  31. Breakdown, He will make you fail.
  32. G.E.C.K.O : Ghost Eating Canine Knights of Orlando.
  33. The Retina Ruiner: Able to telepathically make any living being confused about the color of the sun.
  34. The Gravy Image: A Golden gravy boat which gives the wielder the power to create and manipulate gravy.
  35. Ron Iver: Able to conjure anything he has an ironic t-shirt of.
  36. The Baker’s Dozen: An Evil team of 13 evil bread-themed villains out to destroy the world.
  37. Tantrum, if you don’t follow the make-believe game you are doomed.
  38. The Stare: Able to make situations really uncomfortable, really fast.
  39. Francis Gary Powers: He can transform into an airplane.
  40. The Candlestick Maker: They make candlesticks… WITH THEIR MIND.
  41. The Butcher: master of knives who’ll slice you up along all of your best cuts, and measure them out per pound in a matter of seconds.
  42. The Baker, Head of The Baker’s Dozen
  43. R.E.N.T: Realtors for the Enrichment of Non-urban Tenements.
  44. Bad-guette, the Baguette villain of The Baker’s Dozen
  45. Signal: They can control traffic lights… WITH THEIR MIND
  46. The Coin of Buffett: Replicates any currency to make you the richest person until all of this extra money destroys the economy (fun fact, it’s what happened in Greece!).
  47. Die-ye, The Rye bread villain of The Baker’s Dozen
  48. Dr. Hissinger: Henry Kissinger has snake powers!
  49. Rockhead: They have a rock for a head.
  50. The Third Degree: They sweat acid, and so they’re constantly suffering third degree chemical burns.
  51. The Crimson Restraining Order: They can teleport an object back 500 feet.
  52. Det. Nicholson: He knows everything about the DC Comics Universe. EVERYTHING.
  53. Pain-tzle Roll, The Pretzel villain of The Baker’s Dozen
  54. S.Q.U.A.R.E: Semi-Quintessential Union of Arch-nemeses, Rogues, and Enemies.
  55. The Aquatic Avenger: Shoots water out of their eyes, rides on the back of a whale, and carries a magical trident which gives them power over anything having to do with saltwater (including taffy!).
  56. The Dark Tarsier: He witnessed his parents shot when he was only a child, and since then decided to watch over the city taking on the guise of his greatest fear: The Tarsier.
  57. Gati Takkara, Destroyer of Suspension: They make speed bumps… WITH THEIR MIND.
  58. Ronald Ray-Gun: The Gipper turned in his cowboy hat for a space-laser.  Now he protects the Economy with it.
  59. Kill-batta, The Ciabatta villain of The Baker’s Dozen
  60. The Omnipresent Duck: A Duck that is everywhere, throughout all times. The moment you turn to look at it, though, it is behind you while also being in front of you. It remains, however, a common duck.
  61. Punch-zki, The Paczki villain of The Baker’s Dozen
  62. Lady Lukewarm: Able to manipulate microwaves to slowly heat things over time.
  63. The Pudding: The Proof is in the Pudding, and they ARE the pudding.
  64. Ultra 64: Has 64 robots that carry out Ultra’s commands which he issues using an N64 controller (the joystick moves the robots, the D-pad changes the camera view, you press “A” to jump, “Z” does a barrel roll, etc.).  The robots can come in 23 color variations, from Gray to Atomic Purple.
  65. Mr. Specific: He can create a concussive blast that can level a city by clapping so long as it is Tuesday past 3:34 pm and before 5:56pm, he can stand in the sun for 48 seconds (no more, no less), and it’s above 50 degrees Fahrenheit and below 82 degrees Fahrenheit.  Also, seven seconds before he claps he has so say the words “Clappy Clappy clap-cap”.
  66. The Stereotypist: Able to reduce people to broad caricatures.
  67. Glower-dough, The Sourdough villain of The Baker’s Dozen
  68. Leonid Brrrrezhnev: An experiment gone awry in Siberia gave him ice powers.
  69. A.B.S.E.N.T : Agency for the Betterment of Solvency in the Event of New Threats
  70. Hello, My Name is: They make name-tags… WITH THEIR MIND.
  71. Hell-llah, The Challah villain of the Baker’s Dozen
  72. Captain Respirator: Creates a mighty gale with every exhale.
  73. Cruel-le, The Boule villain of The Baker’s Dozen
  74. Ore-gan Grinder: Can create large deposits of metals in the blink of an eye.
  75. Jackson: He can conform to female gender norms in the blink of an eye.
  76. Sophia: She can conform to male gender norms in the blink of an eye.
  77. The Wasfinder: He can make ten year old maps… WITH HIS MIND.
  78. James Carter, “The Defuser”: has the power of 1000 negotiators and can stop bombs with his mind.
  79. Woe-caccia, The Focaccia villain of The Baker’s Dozen.
  80. The Blue Bureaucrat: Able to manipulate paperwork, but don’t worry they use their powers… FOR GOOD!
  81. The Pearl of Galuth-Galahn: The Wielder of the Pearl is able to make smaller, plastic copies of the Pearl of Galuth-Galahn.
  82. James Smith: Able to conjure up anything he can think of, but unfortunately has a really terrible imagination.
  83. The Ginger-Blood Man, The Gingerbread villain of The Baker’s Dozen
  84. The Helmet of Iris: Give the wearer the ability to have really pleasant conversations.
  85. Red Tape: The arch-nemesis of the Blue Bureaucrat who uses his paperwork powers FOR EVIL.
  86. Umbrique: The Shadow-mover
  87. F.I.V.E : Four Introverted Vanquishers of Evil.
  88. Stallin’: He was a ruthless dictator, and now he can stop time.
  89. Crazed Doughnut, The Sweeter of the second-in-commands for The Baker’s Dozen
  90. Captain Sandwich: They can make sandwiches… WITH THEIR MIND.
  91. The Gauntlets of Mahortia: The wearer of the Gauntlets knows exactly what to do with their hands.
  92. The Uncomfortable Avenger: Able to make things slightly too hot for comfort.
  93. The Jacket: Able to make the surrounding area cold enough to make you wonder if you should have brought a jacket.
  94. Stick-man: Able to turn into a stick, but not able to turn out of a stick.
  95. Liderc: The Reincarnation of an ancient Hungarian demon-chicken that caused nightmares and illness in its time however was cursed to roam the Earth in numerous human forms until it can successfully move sand with a rope, or it can convince someone to throw a black chicken over the roof of a barn during the moment of the highest sun, or it successfully completes 5008 good deeds with the counter resetting after each bad deed it commits.
  96. The Boots of Kunado: These boots were made for walking, and that’s just what they do.
  97. Burnt Toast, The more Savory of the second-in-commands for The Baker’s Dozen.
  98. Nikita “The Cruiser”: The Scarlet Speedster, not only is he super-fast but he’s also the premier of the Soviet Party.
  99. Shakespeare: He can make up words… WITH HIS MIND.
  100. The Listmaker: Can access any information or any power so long as it’s in list form.

Arsea, or on the creation of Language

I’m currently wading into the world of creating an animated series about talking animals in space and as time goes on I’ll be posting more about it.   For this show I wanted to create an alien language to use for background signage and the like, both as a way to explore more of this universe but also as a way of creating a more lived-in universe for my space- crustaceans to live in.  This fictional language is Arsea, and it looks like this:

Now I know the question on all of your minds: Is there some overly-complicated linguistic history to back up this neat little alphabet? Why yes there is, thanks for asking. It all begins with emojis…


 

The Earthen Letterglyphs

Currently language is in the process of being deconstructed, and we’re starting to use pictures, numbers, and standalone letters to represent ideas and to replace whole words.  My first task was to go through and figure out which of these pictures/letters/numerals would be included as a glyph once we inevitably create a unified logographic language.  I ended up with thirty different glyphs that I would end up working with for this, all listed below:

The Emoticonal Letterglyphs
The Emoticonal Letterglyphs

From there I had to do the best I could going through hundreds of years of letter-shaping, much like our own alphabets did, in the span of a few days.  I did this through taking the glyphs and tracing over them (sometimes with my left hand), and re-tracing them, and simplifying the forms so I use less strokes, etc.  Eventually I ended up with a simplified New Earth Alphabet.  Some individual glyphs (my favorites) are below, the befores and after.

The cat-glyph
The cat-glyph, before
The "Cwa" Sonoglyph
The “Cwa” Sonoglyph, after
The "Pizza" logoglyph.
The “Pizza” logoglyph.
The "Eee" Sonoglyph
The “Eee” Sonoglyph
The "Poop" logoglyph.
The “Poop” logoglyph.
The "Guh" Sonoglyph
The “Guh” Sonoglyph

 

 

 

So I had a Nu-Earth Sonoglyphic language from which I could now expand as the Human Race was about to expand.  At this point in the story-world  I’m creating humanity let loose leagues of Arks carrying with them all sort of animals as well as phonograph machines that will teach these animals language (Fun Fact, these phonograph machines are where the name “Arsea” comes from).  We now enter into a new age of this language, the age of the arks.


 

The Space Arks

The Digitized "Puh" sonoglyph.
The Digitized “Puh” sonoglyph.

The first step was a simple one: As shown above I took all of the sonoglyphs (pictures that equate to a sound, or a fancy way of saying letters)and I “digitzed” them by tracing over all lines with tiny black pixel-like squares.  Once everything was digitized, I could set out creating certain words, phrases, etc, which I would then use for the next step of this alphanumeric rabbit hole.  I ended up with about thirty-five words and phrases that I eventually used to created a new round of letters, a few of those are included below to see how the Nu-Earth Sonoglyphs work together.

"Error", an important word in this world.
“Error”, an important word in this world.
"Gagnepain", yes I have a problem.
“Gagnepain”, yes I have a problem.
"Twarogowski", to honor the co-creator of  a lot of this imaginary mythos.
“Twarogowski”, to honor the co-creator of a lot of this imaginary mythos.
"Heisenberg 1", the name of one of the Arks.
“Heisenberg 1”, the name of one of the Arks.
"Quarters", for where creatures would live.
“Quarters”, for where creatures would live.

Well,  as luck/fate/chaos would have it the Human race destroyed themselves and all that was left of them were these giant floating space arks.  These arks floated around for thousands of years in space as new stars and planets were born (time also got a bit wibbly-wobbly here, this is all backstory for the animated universe).  Eventually these Arks crashed on to planets and let loose all of the creatures held inside, and when these creatures gained self-awareness they would see these giant ships and the wreckage from them and begin to craft their new language from these ruins.

So my next step was to mimic thousands of years of wear-and-tear and damage from entrance to the atmosphere and crashing onto planets.  This was done with the aide of data-bending and massive photoshop manipulation.  Unfortunately a lot of the documents I had from this step seem to have disappeared, but I do have what came next: breaking up all of these wrecked and pixellated images and beginning this whole process of of abstraction to logoglyphs to abstraction to sonoglyphs again.


 

Fonos: The Hieroglyphs of the Old Systems

So we’re back at step 1: Creating a hieroglyphic language to be then transposed into a sonoglyphic language.  I used the broken up chunks of the old Ark glitches to create new symbols.  Some of these symbols were near direct translations from the Ark to the Glyph, others used ideas from the Arks but rotated or combined them to create a new glyph, and still yet some glyphs are based around other Fonos glyphs.  I ended up with about 100 of these heiroglyphs.

All 100 or so of the Fonos Logoglyphs.
All 100 or so of the Fonos Logoglyphs.

Aside from directly translating these fractured bits of broken imaginary broken screens and spaceships, I also wanted to try and simplify these glyphs a bit, or at least make them more organic feeling.  So to get each of the cards above I again went through and traced and re-traced each sketch until the glyphs were broken down enough.  Then I brought them back into the computer, which that process in itself then added new wrinkles to each drawing (often times the filters I used would fill in circles with smaller circles, or they’d cause smaller lines that were just wrinkles in the paper to appear).  So to get the digital files that I’d then be working on, which I’ve included some of my favorites below, I would pick and choose which aspects of the new files I liked and which aspects needed to go and finished off with all of these:

The Fonos logoglyph for "Fire".
The Fonos logoglyph for “Fire”.

 

The Fonos Glyph for "Living".
The Fonos Glyph for “Living”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Sense"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Sense”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Government".
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Government”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Reason"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Reason”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Interest"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Interest”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Beauty"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Beauty”.

 

THe Fonos Logoglyph for "Ground"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Ground”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Science".
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Science”.

 

The Fonos Logoglyph for "Feast"
The Fonos Logoglyph for “Feast”.

 


 

The Final Frontier

Okay, we’re near the end.  Once I had all 100 or so glyphs finished and digitally uploaded I split them all apart into different categories based on what their main features were.  From there I combined the glyphs, simplified them, anything to see what sorts of forms or recurring shapes could be seen among all of them.  I then took 44 of these combined glyphs (though some were direct translations) to match up with the 44 phonetic sounds.  These 44 starters can be seen below:

The Antiquity version of Arsean script.
The Antiquity version of Arsean script.

As you can see, though my goal was simplification, it didn’t really work out.  But that was no matter, because it was time for another round of tracing and re-tracing these pictures in an effort to compress hundreds of years of letter-mutating in the span of only a few weeks.  On top of tracing and re-tracing I also wanted to be sure that (almost) every letter for this new language could be accomplished with only three strokes of a pen/pencil/claw, and so through eventually amongst all of this change I came to the final 44 letters of Arsea, shown in two plates below along with their phonetic alphabet words to let you know the sound they make.

 

The Modern Arsean Letters
The Modern Arsean Letters
Organ
“Or” making that sound, or the beginning sound of “Organ”.

And a few closer looks at some of my favorite letters:

"Wee", making the "Wuh" sound.
“Wee”, making the “Wuh” sound.
"Tho" making the beginning "Th" sound in "The".
“Tho” making the beginning “Th” sound in “The”.
"Oure", making the O-U-R sound in "Tour".
“Oure”, making the O-U-R sound in “Tour”.
"Go", or the "Guh" sound like in "Goat".  Also, it looks like a goat.
“Go”, or the “Guh” sound like in “Goat”. Also, it looks like a goat.
"Io", the letter that makes the sound "I" or "Eye" or "Aye".
“Io”, the letter that makes the sound “I” or “Eye” or “Aye”.
"Eer", making an "Ear" sound.
“Eer”, making an “Ear” sound.
"Choo", making the "Sh" sound like "Charlie".
“Choo”, making the “Sh” sound like “Charlie”.
"Al", making the hard "A" sound which begins "Alpha".
“Al”, making the hard “A” sound which begins “Alpha”.
"Oop", making the middle double-o sound in "book".
“Oop”, making the middle double-o sound in “book”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So that’s it.  Arsea is a direct phonetic cipher, so any word you want to write you just break apart into its sounds and pick out the correct letters for it.  Was this an extremely complicated way to get at something extremely simple? Yes. Did I waste my time?  That, I open up for your discussion.

100 Bad Restaurants

  1. A restaurant full of screaming monkeys
  2. A restaurant that only serves slabs of concrete
  3. A restaurant that leaves you handcuffed to a radiator for your entire meal.
  4. A restaurant that charges everything by the ounce (salt, napkins, plates, electricity, air, etc.)
  5. A restaurant that serves raw chicken
  6. A restaurant that serves food by throwing it in your face
  7. A restaurant full of angry bees
  8. A restaurant where everyone is forced to sing a “happy birthday” song every five minutes.
  9. A restaurant sitting on top of an active volcano
  10. A restaurant that combines all of the above.
  11. A restaurant where waiters flip over tables when they’re angry.
  12. A restaurant that insists that everything tastes better with pickled okra.
  13. A restaurant that only exists in restaurant review books.
  14. A restaurant that refuses business to everyone.
  15. A restaurant full of hungry pugs.
  16. A theme restaurant where the theme is “Hurricane Katrina”.
  17. A restaurant that has your waiter sit down and judge you for the entire meal.
  18. A restaurant that takes your wallet at the door and then refuses to give it back.
  19. A restaurant that acts like it doesn’t know what a restaurant is.
  20. A restaurant that combines all of the above.
  21. A theme restaurant where the theme is “Racial Stereotypes”.
  22. A restaurant that serves you food on plates made of plutonium.
  23. A restaurant inside of a CDC quarantine zone.
  24. A restaurant that has a gaping abyss in the middle, and when you stare deeply into it it stares also deeply into you. When you fall into the abyss you are never seen again, and the restaurant will only refund the meal but not pay for funerary expenses, as life is all but a meaningless exercise.  (It’s called “Nietzsche’s” It has a bleak atmosphere, small portions, and all meals have to be okayed by the owner’s sister.  It does, however, also have a fantastic cherry pie).
  25. A theme restaurant where the theme is “Killer clowns and harpsichords”.
  26. A beach taco stand that will only throw sand in your face.
  27. A food truck possessed by a serial child-killer who was recently executed and now roams the streets at night and kills people.  The real problem is that it’s a food truck.
  28. A food court restaurant that is an actual courtroom and you have to argue your case to be served food.  If you don’t win your case you can get up to three consecutive life sentences.
  29. A restaurant full of seagulls and Canadian geese.
  30. A restaurant that combines all of the above.
  31. An Ice Cream Shop that only serves tuna salad.
  32. A restaurant that takes “home cooked meal” to the extreme and hires actors to play your parents who spend the entire meal arguing with each other and at the end of the meal they tell you they’re getting a divorce.
  33. A restaurant that thinks a salad is a raw head of cabbage.
  34. A restaurant that demands you do all of the cooking for your meal yourself.
  35. A theme restaurant where the theme is “Bad Hospital”.
  36. A restaurant full of pumas.
  37. A restaurant that serves terrible food and when you complain about it insists that you just don’t “get it”.
  38. A restaurant that serves all of its food out of flaming tires.
  39. A restaurant and a tattoo parlor where you can eat a philly cheese steak while getting a tattoo of a philly cheese steak (they only know how to do philly cheese steaks).
  40. A restaurant that combines all of the above.
  41. A restaurant that decorates its interior with portraits of creepy little girls who watch you while you eat.
  42. A restaurant where everything is made of plexiglass and astroturf, even the food.
  43. A pizza place that makes its crust out of dead chickadees.
  44. A restaurant with a live mine field inside.
  45. A restaurant where everyone’s name is Tyler and all of the food is Tyler.
  46. A restaurant that decorates its interior with dead alligators with googly eyes.
  47. A theme restaurant where the theme is “Catholic School”
  48. A restaurant full of falcons.
  49. A restaurant where all of the salt has been replaced with Lye.
  50. A restaurant that combines all of the above.
  51. A beachside restaurant that the ocean engulffs during high tide.
  52. A hot dog stand that serves batteries instead of hot dogs.
  53. A theme restaurant where the theme is “radio shack”.
  54. A restaurant where every hour minutes the chef runs out of the kitchen and screams “DEAR GOD I’VE KILLED THEM ALL!” before getting dragged to the back by a bunch of men in suits.  The next hour it’s a different chef.
  55. A restaurant that will mail your meal to you in 6 to 8 weeks.
  56. A dinner theater that has a grateful dead concert every night and it takes eight hours to eat one meal (though the longest it’s taken is a week to eat one meal).
  57. An old fashioned 1950’s diner with old fashioned 1950’s racism and sexism.  The worst part is that there’s a minor discrepancy on their jukebox where they have one song that was recorded in 1959 but wasn’t released until 1960. It’s disgusting.
  58. A trendy restaurant that glues beards on to all of their food.
  59. A restaurant full of stink beetles.
  60. A restaurant that combines all of the above.
  61. A restaurant that only serves ketchup packets and milk cups.
  62. A fine dining establishment where the owner will dump molten gold on to patrons who aren’t wearing the right shoes.  Who decides what’s the right shoe and the wrong shoe? The owner, of course.
  63. A theme restaurant where the theme is “East Berlin”.
  64. A restaurant full of goats.
  65. A Barbeque restaurant that will slaughter a cow in front of you even if you order salad.
  66. A restaurant where you have sixty seconds to eat your meal.  If you fail, you explode, if you succeed you pay $8.95 and leave a generous tip.
  67. Damocles’: A restaurant where a sword is hanging over every seat by a thread that could snap at any moment.
  68. A restaurant where the waiter orders for you and then gets the order wrong.
  69. A restaurant that has such high turnaround in staff that people aren’t even sure if they work there or not. This include the manager, who may or may not be on their first day.
  70. A restaurant that combines all of the above.
  71. A restaurant where everything is painted a neon orange: menus, seats, floors, ceilings, chairs, faces.
  72. A restaurant where you have to eat your meal in front of an upset gorilla.
  73. A restaurant whose menu consists of two items: 1)BACON GREASE and 2) FISH WATER.
  74. A theme restaurant where the theme is “White Snake Concert”.
  75. A restaurant full of deer ticks.
  76. A hot dog stand that will serve Hot. Dogs. Like a Pembroke welsh corgi that’s been in a car for an hour with the windows up.
  77. A seafood restaurant that doesn’t seem to know what a fish is.
  78. A restaurant that is an elaborate death trap that you have to navigate your way through.  They do, however, have the best sopapillas in town.
  79. A fine dining establishment that has all of its signage and menus written in Comic Sans.
  80. A restaurant that combines all of the above.
  81. A Twin Peaks themed diner that has terrible cherry pie.
  82. A Steakhouse where all of the meals are named after your childhood pets.
  83. A restaurant full of mirrors, so that no matter where you look you’re forced to watch yourself eat.
  84. A restaurant that has an animatronic rat band sing songs by Andrew lloyd Webber out of key. The worse part is you’re expected to tip the robot band.
  85. A French Bakery that only serves Meat Pudding.
  86. An Irish Pub that only sells macarons.
  87. A restaurant that has only one employee who just wears different hats.  If you bring attention to it you are banned.
  88. A restaurant that insists everything tastes better with grape jelly and Worcestershire sauce.
  89. A restaurant where the only lighting is strobe lighting.
  90. A restaurant that combines all of the above.
  91. A restaurant that will banish you to a cornfield if you don’t tip enough.
  92. A restaurant that lets all of its financial decisions be made by pre-teens.
  93. A sports bar that only plays CNN .
  94. A restaurant full of hungry, sleepy cats.
  95. A restaurant that you have to take a standardized test in order to get in.
  96. A restaurant where the waiters are required to nudge you and ask “Say, you want some steak with that butter?” even if you are not eating steak or using butter.
  97. A restaurant that will constantly judge you on how attractive and hip you are, and if you fail in either one of these criteria then the restaurant has the right to bring you to the back where you will never be seen or heard from again. It’s a Burger place called”Logan’s Buns”.
  98. A piano bar where every 78 minutes the Space Jam theme starts playing and people in Looney Tunes outfits come out and start gyrating their hips in people and stock broker’s food.
  99. An old timey saloon full of memorabilia from the “Terminator” movie series.
  100. A restaurant that combines all of the above, so… Applebees.

Game of Thrones S4, Ep1 Preview

As we all know I’m one of the most in-demand writers both on and off the internet, so when George R. R. martin came to me and asked in his grizzled old voice “You wanna make the season 4?”, I hopped at the chance.  It didn’t even matter that I hadn’t read any of the Game of Thrones books or seen any of the TV show, Martin said, he wanted a fresh perspective.  And so, here’s what you can look forward to for the first episode of season 4 of Game of Thrones:

The wind howls at Gotheram’s Cathedral, snaking through the folding chairs of the wedding that had come to pass.  People wake up, unsure whether they’re hung over or just dead.  Glintha the Dragon Queen surveys the wreckage, HER wreckage, and she smiles “Me and my Dragon Arrow did pretty good here. We’re definitely going to be able to take over the Sword kingdom”.  Then she remembers: Bortha the Queen of Knives! Bortha and Glintha, as we all know from the flashbacks in season three, are sisters who were separated at birth by the Old King Randersham because Randersham heard a prophecy from the Mauve Monk that one of his children would destroy his kingdom (also, because he really REALLY wanted a son and he figured having two daughters would just make other kingdoms make fun of him).

Bortha has since ruled from the shadows, using her father as a puppet, which worked great until her sniveling little brother, Hamham, took over and started peeing on all of the furniture.  Now the Queen of knives is cornered, but rather than admit her mistake and join forces with the Dragon Queen Glintha she decides that she’s going to join forces with the treacherous Dwarf King Cerce, take over Randersham’s castle from the inside, and then stab Cerce and cut out his heart, thus insuring that she’ll also rule over the underground Dwarf Kingdom Terrenuit.  Bortha and Cerce ready their poisonous knives when Cerce’s henchman, Babu, sneaks up behind Bortha, knocks her out, and throws her in the dungeon.

Glintha doesn’t know about Cerce’s betrayal, though, in fact she still doesn’t know about Cerce’s ties to the Randersham Castle because her dragonling Frot decided it best not to tell her before the red weeding.  Glintha masses her dragonlings readies them to attack the next kingdom: The Forest Castle of Ragnos ruled by the once mighty King Jazubar (a new addition to the cast this season).  Glintha is shocked to learn that Jazubar, whom she has just figure out existed, had been trading with Kontok and the kingdom of thieves this entire time!  Glintha is faced with a difficult decision: Team up with the thieves who killed her father to kill her sister, or kill the thieves who killed her father and move on to another kingdom and just take slightly longer to kill her sister. Complicating this decision is Kontok’s chiseled chin.

Meanwhile in the Northlands Josk and Hans huddle together in their yurt:
“It is cold”.
“Ya”.
“Life is hard”.
“Ya”.

Cerce talks to Hamham and tells him of his sister’s trechery. Hamham isn’t surprised, and decides to execute Bortha at dawns light. Cerce smirks his dwarfish grin: What id he planning? We’ll find out next week.

Meanwhile on the Coastal kingdom of Broom’s Beard the ship that was traveling to the Noumon continent has returned, and Captain Strom Strummer walks off: Didn’t he die by getting eaten by a whale, you ask? Not Captain Strom! He sliced his way out of the beasts stomach and brought back a whale lung to be preserved in the Broom’s Beard Museum of oddities.  The Captain and his crew have also brought back something even more dangerous: Explosive gunpowder.  Stipples the trade governor smiles to himself: Yes, now we can have a stake in this game. This Game of Thrones.

End of Episode. Oh, although Sanxabaan is still working on raising his undead army.  It probably won’t work, but I don’t want to spoil the season for you guys.  Make sure you watch the start of Season 4 of Game of Thrones on April 6th and remember: If you can spot the anachronisms, make sure to post them to our Twitter page @GOTPROBLEMS and you’ll be entered to win a free pizza!  Now as Old King Randersham would say: I’ll see you on the Road to the Throne!

Help! My Lawn Ornaments Been Taken by ROBBERS!

Another one of my impossibly punctuated and long titles, as well another testament to my cinematic crimes, we’ve arrived at another pretty definitive piece in the Vvinni Gagnepain oeuvre. It’s also one of the most beautiful, silly, and incomprehensible pieces I’ve made. Let’s take a look at it:

Help! My Lawn Ornaments Been Taken by ROBBERS! from Vvinni Gagnepain on Vimeo.

Lawn Ornament falls into a category of films that I call “The Beautiful Mess”, and it represents everything about this category that I love: It’s a wonder to look at (even if some composition choices are strange ones, I feel like everything mushes together into a wonderful surreal soup), the plot is all over the place (It’s essentially a “Crime Movie”, taking bits and pieces of genre conventions without really doing anything to put them together. This may sound like a criticism, but it’s most certainly not), and all of the performances are greatly sincere and take this odd world they’ve been thrown into at face value (I really do enjoy the performance of everyone in the film, give or take a Vvinni Gagnepain).  The only few thing’s I’d change if I were to release a “special edition director’s cut” would be to fix the aspect ration and the freeze frames (I made this before I really understood what an aspect ratio was, which is why the film has some weird letterbox issues), and I’d probably re-do the sound mix (Rigsby’s screaming scene peaks and there’s not much to do about that, but the knocking on the door in the house is nearly inaudible, and Mr. Henry’s song gets a bit drowned out by stock music in the background).

Nevertheless, I consider this film a huge success. What about you? Do you feel like eating a money omelet now?