Fungus of the HeartFungus of the Heart by Jeremy C. Shipp
My rating: 3/5 cats
One StarOne StarOne Star

i did it!! i read a whole book on the computer!! welcome me, twenty-first century!!!

i was not made for this modern world. and this book probably suffered for it. but it was totally my own damn fault, the deficiencies are entirely within me: 1) i seldom enjoy short stories, 2) i usually don’t like the bizarro stuff, 3) i sure don’t like reading on the computer.

i don’t know how you people can do it. if i was a character on heroes, my ability would not be one of the more dramatic fancy ones (and i would also be unemployed because that shit got canceled) but i am excellent at remembering where on a page certain text has occurred. it is nowhere near as cool as a photographic memory. but it gets me by. i can be like, “that part was halfway down the verso page about a quarter-inch into the book’s width” (those of you who know me know that i showed remarkable restraint right there) reading on the computer, i can barely make sense of the words. and i am like this monster scroller, and i will get all jerky and suddenly be like 4 stories ahead. it would be funny if it weren’t so sad. i am like a rapping grandma, no one should have to see that.

as for the bizarro stuff, i just frequently feel lost, like several of the stories were deliberately trying to destroy me with confusion. it is not like an acid trip, but like an artist’s rendition of an acid trip. my acid trips were never like fear and loathing. the closest i ever came to that kind of shit was when i was camping and i wandered off to sit on a sunwarmed rock by a lake and then decided i was a mountain lion, so i climbed a tree and stretched out on a branch and just luxuriated in my long sinewy cat muscles. but i didn’t believe i was a mountain lion; i didn’t hallucinate myself into being a mountain lion. i just thought “were i a mountain lion, this would feel really good.” but some of the stories in this book made me feel like the way a dog looks when you pretend to throw the ball you have in your hand and it goes all crazy with frustration and longing. or like the one time i took special k and i felt like someone was using my brain and i couldn’t get it back. i did not mean this to turn into a drug-confessional—but i felt so “huh?” so frequently reading this that it is the only reference point i have. but i liked enough of the stories that i absolutely plan on reading them over again when the book comes out in real-form. it will make it easier for me to concentrate, and i one hundred per cent expect to like it more. and i will know where every scene falls on every scrap of that paper.


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this feels gauche, but when i announced i was starting a blog, everyone assured me this is a thing that is done. i’m not on facebook, i’ve never had a cellphone or listened to a podcast; so many common experiences of modern life are foreign to me, but i’m certainly struggling financially, so if this is how the world works now, i’d be foolish to pass it up. any support will be received with equal parts gratitude and bewilderment.

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