Clothed in Splendour 12/17/2011
Solaris have acquired the sequel, hallelujah! And Babylon Steel was reviewed, favourably, in SFX. Oh the relief.
I urge readers to buy a copy of that estimable publication; quid pro quo, and all that. It contains many an excellent article, apart from the review, (which I am in no way planning to have laminated, framed in gold, and hung over my desk. At least not until after I have finished the rest of the Festive Preparations).
I am now, inevitably, in panic-stricken rewrite of the sequel, and suffering the probably entirely usual fears that I will fail dismally, that people might enjoy the first one but will find the second one a disappointment and strike me off their reading lists forthwith and with opprobrium.
I also seem to be suffering, as the astute reader has no doubt observed, from some strangely Victorian influence on my prose style.
I think it’s the hat.
I bought a hat, recently. It’s a splendid hat, I like it a great deal, but it is high, and black, and has a tuft of feathers on one side, and in combination with a full-length, severely cut, high-collared black winter coat, does rather make me resemble a Victorian funeral mute. Elderly people look at me askance, and shuffle away down the other end of the bus.
(This may not be because I summon thoughts of mortality, of course; I may merely look like some ominously dark-clad and eccentrically-behatted person they would prefer not sit next to. I admit to occasional strangeness, but I swear I present no threat to the elderly – unless they should happen to read one of the sex scenes in Babylon Steel and suffer a fatal conniption as a result).
Clothes do affect my behaviour; a new pair of buckled boots gives me a piratical strut; a slinky dress brings out the inner vamp, in roleplay armour I get all butched up and start challenging half-orcs to arm-wrestling matches.
Hmm. If I bought a navy-blue power suit, would I become suddenly efficient, whisk through the undone paperwork cluttering my desk, phone all the people I should have phoned six months ago, and generally Get Myself Sorted? Alternatively, if I bought one of those cloaks that has a deep hood and goes all swirly when you walk, would I have no choice but to stand somewhere murky and brood a lot?
Maybe I should try the navy power suit thing. In the meantime, I would be fascinated to know if anyone else finds that the clothes they wear affect their behaviour.
Yoga, tool of SATAN! 11/03/2011
Yep, it's true. I just heard it on the train. I hear all the best insanity on the train. Apparently, the mere fact that yoga is connected with Eastern religions means that it's a doorway for the devil. Sit down, wrap your right ankle over your left ear, get your transcendental freak on and the very second you succeed in slipping out of your physical body, there's the Old Boy himself with a butterfly net, ready to grab your floaty soul and whisk it away to realms of eternal damnation. So the lady on the train was saying, earnestly, into her phone, as she passed on a tale of having recently snatched an unwary friend from the jaws of Yoga Evil.
Well, lawks, is all I can say. What next? What untold evils lurk in the realms of hitherto innocent-seeming alternative routines? Does acupuncture allow Satan to sneak in through all those convenient little holes in the dermis? Does holding crystals, perhaps, give him focus, acting like a magnifying glass on sunlight, permitting satanic influences to burn the goodness out of one’s soul, leaving only crisp and sooty baditude?
Anyway, I shall be jolly careful next time I buy some joss sticks, I can tell you. I mean, they probably don’t even put ‘inhaling pure SATAN’ on the label, or anything. And as for Bikram yoga, the one you do in boiling hot rooms? That’s obviously just a preparation for the fires. In fact, since I’m quite obviously hellbound anyway, what with all the alternative stuff, maybe I should try it out; it’s practically boot camp.