Words of (Sci-fi) Wisdom…

I’ve been watching a lot of sci-fi lately, and even reading some.  All of this science-fiction exposure has led to some words of wisdom that I think would apply if you were ever to find yourself caught in a science-fiction story.  It is important to note that these bits of advice don’t apply to the real world, but only to the science-fiction world, and should only be used in that particular reality.

1.  If you see a door open, or open a door yourself, and it makes an ominous noise, beware.  The door may or may not be dangerous.  The best way of knowing if it’s immediately dangerous is the tone of the noise.  Minor key noises, bad; major key noises…well not good, there are no door-opening-noises that are good exactly, but if the noise is in a major key it’s unlikely that a guy with a laser is about to charge through the door.
2.  All super-powerful artifacts are intrinsically dangerous.  In fact, the danger of the artifact is related directly to its power.  That is to say, the more powerful the artifact, the more dangerous it is to the user.
3.  If there is a place in the universe that you don’t want to be, that’s where you will find the person/object/information that you need most.
4.  If there is a wise and comforting mentor in your life, she/he will be dead as a door-nail by the third act.  Sorry, there’s nothing to be done about it.
5.  If someone approaches you holding a harmless looking object in a threatening or ominous way, it very well may be an artifact of immense power (cf. item #2) and you should treat it accordingly.
6.  Grunge metal music in the background is a bad thing, especially if it’s in a minor key and especially if there is somebody nearby welding something.
7.  Be very careful who you trust, you never know if it might be a killer robot.
8.  That woman/man you can’t stand and constantly exchange sarcastic banter with?  That’s your soul-mate, may as well just get it over with and make out with her/him already.
9.  Footsoldiers, peons, and “average” badguys of every description are the worst shots in the universe.  If one of them has you in his sights I wouldn’t worry too much.
10.  Finally, the mystical power or energy that you think is bunk?  It’s actually the most powerful tool available to you and you may as well just get on board with it.

Again, these pieces of wisdom are offered as a public service to all those of you who might, at some time or another, find yourselves in a science-fiction story.  I do hope that you find them helpful.

The Finish Line…

I’m writing again today.  As with the last time I posted on a writing day it’s a paper for The Old Testament in the New Testament.  This time my outline was in the neighborhood of 2,800 words for a 5,000 word paper.  I’m about half done and sitting in the 2,000 word realm, so that’s more or less right (the back end of papers are always longer, that’s where the meat is).  The only problem is that this time I’m much, much more tired than the first time.  I’ve loved my first semester of PhD studies, but I can’t pretend I’m not ready for a break.  Eventually mental attrition becomes a serious factor and I’m all the way there right now.  But I can see the finish line now.  My last assignment is due at 3:30pm tomorrow afternoon.  I’ll give a 5 minute presentation, then I’ll fall asleep until Thursday.  Seriously, it might actually happen in the classroom while the other students are presenting.  Don’t anyone take it personally.  If you’re in the class with me you feel free to fall asleep while I’m presenting, I won’t mind at all.  Okay, I’m going to take a 30 minute break and then it’s back at it until I can’t make my fingers type anymore.  If things go well (which they generally don’t) I’ll be done before midnight tonight.  Wow that would be nice.