Are you OK?
You’re okay. It’s going to be okay.
You need rest.
Did you love him?
You don’t know me.
Are you alright?
I hear these lines over and over. There are many exceptions of course. But the rules there are exceptions here. That place does have its eccentrics and weirdoes and those who excel and inspire.
The ones who act differently are usually on the outskirts of town.
Not thinking of them today.
It's such a different place. So many white people, too many men but of the women, lots with pretty faces and tantalizing bodies. And some that can kick ass like nobody here I know of. I like to go back there just to look at them. Lot of times I don't even care what they're doing. Just look. It’s a hypnotizing realm.
They meet in bars a lot and don't pay much attention to the drinks - unlike people in bars here - unless they're into downing multiple shots - enough to make folks puke but usually not them. Lot of them smoking cigarettes too. I hope nobody impressionable is watching when they do any of that. There are so many pole dancers. You can stop women walking down the street and ask them what they do and lots of them will say, “Pole dancer.”
Or they may be serial killers cause there are lots of them too and they have all sorts of convoluted motivations for being serial killers frequently having to do with grudges held longer than most on this side can remember anything and their methods are so imaginative - it's like the Amazon Rainforest of varieties of killing and serial killing. These serial killers aren't generally dangerous people if you aren't part of their intricate revenge plot, so I wasn't scared to date one. Sonia. Met her through her pole-dancing sister at a bar full of pretty young people drinking in an obligatory manner. She wouldn’t have been interested in me here, but there it’s more of a man’s world as in the way a lot of men here would like it to be. Took me to her apartment and showed me her photo wall with pictures of all the people she'd killed with a line through them and a bunch others that she hadn't killed yet and maps and newspaper articles. I asked if she wasn't worried about leaving so much evidence around and she said, "Well, that's the way we do it."
It’s not just the serial killers with photo fetishes. I’ve met lots of people there into photos on the walls and tables, in albums, home movies. And unlike us, they look at them a lot, especially if someone has died and that can go on for decades. They can get pretty obsessive about the dead, have trouble moving on.
Sonia and I had unprotected sex because she said they don't have to worry about that. But it wasn't so satisfying to me anyway. I hate the way people there make love. They're almost always like Bonobo monkeys - no foreplay, or just a tiny bit like they’re pretending but not really into it. And then it's out of the pants but not in view and thrust thrust. Terrible example for the youth. Seemed so penis-centric to me and you'd think she'd be the one who was unsatisfied but she got off super quick and said that the women there come pre-lubricated and can have immediate orgasms and to her that’s what it was all about. She liked frantically removing some clothes, leaping up on me with her legs straddling, seemed to prefer being pushed up against a wall or a on a table for a quickie. The women especially tend to stay half dressed even in bed, and make love with a bra on - yuck. Like they think sex is just about genitals so no need to bother with the rest of the body. She said I'd have to go to porn town to have sex where people took their time and dwelled on erogenous zones. One good thing was that they don't get morning breath so, even though we hardly kissed before having sex the night before, we kissed in bed right after waking up without brushing - and it wasn't yucky.
But they do brush quite often and when she brushed her teeth, it was just the molars on her right side real fast sideways instead of up and down and stopped when she'd hardly gotten started. Never saw her floss. She said that’s how they do it and they do have pretty white teeth so I didn't argue. But if any impressionable young person from here saw them brush like that, I’m afraid they might pick up that bad habit which is not at all good dental hygiene in our world.
Breakfast with the kids - pancakes. I had a lot of breakfasts there. Or if not, still usually a lot of white flour, sugar, fat and everyone in a hurry. But they were pretty much all slim and healthy looking. I think those people have different metabolisms and nutritional needs. The diet I saw her and her friends eat would be unhealthy and lead to obesity here. The bodies so many of them have you’d think they spent lots of times in gyms with personal trainers. Aside from a few who do morning jogging, they almost never had time for exercise.
We went out and walked down the street. She didn’t carry a purse. There has to be a special reason to do so she said. Now and then there was a bouquet of flowers in a trash can she said were thrown there by disappointed lovers. A lot of the cars had people sitting in the back seats. I asked her what that was about and she said to surprise the drivers when they got in. Every now and then a car would explode. People were crossing the street without looking to the left and right carefully and there were frequently cars screeching to a stop before them as they held their hands forward which seemed to actually help stop the cars. Strong people. But a number of pedestrians got hit and they usually weren’t in crosswalks. They really need to ticket more for jaywalking. There were also people running from cars driving right at them but they'd just run straight ahead instead of going to the side but then at the last second they would leap out of the way. They'll run straight ahead even from thundering dinosaurs rather than step aside. They can leap really far – and jump out of windows and off buildings and get up and run. There were some explosions and people would pretty much outrun the explosions and be propelled forward like they were surfing the blast. Excellent reaction times - like they can slow time down to do just the right thing.
Their resistance to heat is remarkable. I’ve seen them standing or running or fighting right next to huge infernos that would set us on fire and bake us to a crisp. Now and then there would be a car go by chased by another car and they'd drive like maniacs through busy intersections, on the wrong side, running lights, even down sidewalks and through stores and never hit anyone. Lot of damage though.
Lot of guns too. People were shot walking down the street or sitting in cafes and there were occasional gunfights. And people pointing guns at others unnecessarily which is bad form and holding them pointed within reach - even to well-trained law enforcement or military adversaries who know how to snatch a gun from someone before they can fire.
Super violent place but somehow we didn’t seem to be in danger. Just watched and walked on. In one courtyard there were all these guys up top with automatic weapons that could fire an enormous number of shots without having to refill - as surprising as seeing a lot of clowns come out of a small car. And the guy they were shooting at down below they just couldn't hit but then he started picking them off with a couple of pistols shooting this way and that, in front, behind, never missing. And he saved this pretty young woman from them and there were all these new guys with automatic weapons running toward them but they started kissing – the man and the woman, not the guys running toward them. And the former got away which I didn't think was possible. That sort of thing is a common occurrence. Some guys had guns that were so large I don’t think I could have lifted them. You’d think that they’d have gotten smaller and lighter as the technology advanced, and they have more advanced technology than us, but I didn’t ask. Actually, it all started getting a little boring.
They got a lot of the most modern equipment, frequently more advanced than what we've got here, but their vending machines are almost always broken or jammed, keeping money, not dropping stuff that's paid for though there is often a savvy soul nearby who can bump it just right to fix the problem and if not, wham bam from the frustrated coin dropee. There were a lot of repair shops because some people, mainly men of course, we're trashing things a lot. Shops for hurled lamps, one that fixed TV monitors that had been smashed. There was a store just for fixing mobile phones that had been thrown into water, especially toilets, and another for those thrown at floors and walls. There was a cleaning agency that was on quick alert to go to offices or homes and clean up a mess when someone in a fit of anger had cleared their desk or shelves or some table onto the floor. These people had no time for cleaning up their own messes.
The place is filled with people who cuss a lot, need anger management and impulse control, and are quite accident prone. They've got hospitals full of people injured in car accidents, explosions, and gun fights. They've got a whole wing for hand injuries from men hitting each other or walls or windows. There are always a lot of visitors at the hospitals which is good. But one of the main things they say in sending away a visitor or relative or to the person in bed is that they need to rest. Good lord. That's what they've been doing - they're in bed. And if a person in bed or out has coughed - no matter the circumstances - forget it. Basically, a single cough there is almost always a harbinger of imminent death.
With all this trauma, violence, anger, and other intense emotions, it's not surprising that a lot of them go to therapists and the therapists there tend to keep a box of tissue near the client and take notes constantly. That's not done much at all here as it is rather distracting, off-putting, not condusive to a comfortable bond between the two. Their tissue use there is considerable greater than here as well.
They have the weirdest conversations. Just walking down the street I'd hear the same lines over and over. "You don't know me," was so common. And "Now I see the real you," or "I don't know who you are," when someone exhibits undesired and unusual behavior. Then there was, "But did you love her?" or some version of that. That's a really big deal to them - like more important than the affair itself. They've got a lot of adultery going on and tend to be unforgiving about it but what they really want to know is, "Did you love him?" etc. Who says that here? And they're often distressed that they didn't tell someone I love you before they died as if that was more important than their actions and unspoken feelings with that person.
Recently they've picked up the habit of saying the word "language" by itself sharply as a signal, usually to kids, not to cuss. It's become so popular that they even started saying it in the past before people did that here. Another recent arrival is the confident, "Here's what you're gonna do," followed by a rather demanding set of instructions that will be followed.
I’d often hear people say What? Often in an indignant way, and Yes! In a triumphant manner, usually with a fist pumped high. Or No! really dramatically looking up at the sky arms extended. And after an attempted first kiss, "I'm sorry. I shouldn't have done that," or something similar. And every now and then, "I did it to protect you" as a reason for never having told the other something very important in their lives or for sheltering them in some overly restrictive way. Keeping others safe, often in a way that backfires, seems to be an obsession.
Above all and in curious frequency, I was constantly hearing "Are you okay?" or the alternative, "Are you alright?" There'd be an occasional imaginative, "Is everything okay (or alright)." It's like, when they don't know what to say but think they should say something, they say, "Are you okay?" or a facsimile. It seems obligatory or something that’s expected culturally. The word okay is their favorite word used in various ways, but “Are you okay?” leads. I think in order to be an accepted member of that world, one has only to occasionally repeat “Are you okay?”
I'd say that okayness is the core concept of their lives. They constantly worry about other people and events being okay. No matter what the problem there was someone saying, “It’s going to be okay.” There were always people on the verge of death and every time someone was dying there would be someone with them saying, "It's okay, you're going to be okay," when it was obvious it wasn't okay and they weren't going to be okay but they liked to comfort people that way. But if the person was already dead then, if it wasn’t expected natural causes, there would be people to hold their loved one back who was struggling to be with the body. I always think of it as important to be with a recently deceased loved one, even if they died unexpectedly, but there I guess they think it's a curse cause they instinctively stop that from happening and leave the corpse to strangers. Not a very sensitive position in my book. And the number one question about someone who died is Did they suffer? They don't make that big a deal out of it if the person isn't dying. Like it's okay to die as long as you don't suffer. So an unexpected bullet to the back of the head might be the ideal way to die. No consideration that ones state of mind at death might be of any importance. No idea of any transition. A non spiritual materialist approach is the norm. One thing they can do easily with dead people that we can’t is close their eyes - even after a good deal of time has passed. Try that here - even right away.
They have a higher rate of departed loved ones than us, a lot who died violently. They also have this weird idea that someone can die in someone else's place. I kept hearing people saying anguished things like, "It should have been me," and feeling all guilty about it, or, "You wish it had been me who died," or the more nasty, "It should have been you instead of him (or her as the case may be)." They’re also quick to take or give the blame for a tragic event saying, “It was my fault,” or “If you hadn’t made that call, he’d be alive now.” Related to this is the emotionally stated, “Everything I (or you) touch turns to dirt (or excrement).”
Then there’s food. It’s usually junky and on the run but if it’s good it’s too often ignored. To them a well set table with a sumptuous meal is a time to bring up disturbing emotional baggage or make shocking announcements – right as people are starting to dig into the meal. They clearly have no idea of any relationship between digestion and emotions. Even when there's no unpleasantness at the table, people there sit down in front of these great meals and don't pay attention to the food and at any time can just get up and walk away from it which to me seems unmindful and wasteful. I don't drink anymore but when I did I'd never leave an unfinished drink. Most people here don't. I've worked in restaurants and noticed. Some of us would finish other people's drinks. Not there. I've noticed they don't know how to hold a wine glass which is held correctly by the stem so as not to smudge or heat it. There, even wine connoisseurs wrap their hand around the glass - so I guess it's not wrong for them.
They also don't know how to properly trim the wick or hold kerosene lamps either - even if they're people who live with them and don't use electricity. I'm a person who's lived with them without electricity. You have to have a habit of picking the glass chimneys up from the bottom cause the tops get too hot to hold and you don't want smudges on top anyway. And they're blown out easily with the chimney in place and the hand reflecting the blowing, not turned out with the adjustment screw.
Another thing they do with glass is wipe mirrors and windshields with bare hands. That smudges them (like the wine glasses), leaving oil. If they wanted it clean and clear they'd use a cloth or tissue.
If I lived there I'd have to learn to turn down money, not care about money. I see people there refuse money all the time. I'm including large amounts that could change their whole life and that they've really got coming to them. But then there are the ones who go off with a wad of often illegally gained loot to some idyllic place with no infrastructure where they’ll sit and stare and drink alcohol and I guess never get restless or depressed.
Sometimes I call them the staring people. They do that a lot. They're always looking off into the distance meaningfully. They don't fidget or pick their noses which is a definite social plus, but also they don't read or at least not when I'm around. They're sort of like native people I've been with who haven't been overexposed to our intellectual information and progress-based life, except they have tons of information and progress, frequently an astounding intellectual capacity. Their ability to learn languages fills me with admiration and envy. When I think of all the time I've put into foreign languages just to barely be able to get by, and then see them go from zero to sixty overnight translating others speaking rapidly or chatting casually without stumbling or even looking anything up, I feel pretty inferior.
But it’s what they don’t say that gets me. They nobly never take credit for anything including extreme heroics but they’re even silent when they could be explaining why they’re innocent or bleeding or any host of things that here only a person who couldn’t speak or didn’t speak the language would not tell. If I were to live there I'd have to practice not explaining or sharing vital information no matter how ridiculous it was for me not to reveal it. But it never mattered to me because, coincidentally, I already knew what they weren't saying.
One way in which their world is like ours is that more and more they're using the subjective form of the first person pronoun when the objective should be used, as in, "What happened between Vivian and I," or "He gave it to you and I." I want to ask them, "Would you say, 'He gave it to I?’" I even saw an arrogant, haughty, aging NYC professor erringly correct on this very point a young woman he was mentoring right in front of her mother. I wanted to tell her she was right and he was wrong but there was no chance.
They've got plenty of parks and greenery though the children on the swings do tend to be taken away. There are more graveyards than parks though. These people surely have the highest rate of graveyard visitation of any realm in the universe. Seems no one feels connected to the departed unless they go to a grave and there are plenty of burials to keep those graveyards full. Speaking of graves, if someone digs a grave or any hole, they do such a good job that it looks like it was dug with a backhoe. And they do it only with a shovel whereas here we’d be relying a great deal on a pickaxe as well. There are few cremations and that would mainly be if ash were called for – like to fly in someone’s face. Florists there are kept busy. And so are lawyers because, unlike here, they need lawyers to read wills to an assembled group of relatives - and it always goes bad or unexpected.
So they're loyal to the departed but about the living - oh wow - sky high rate of divorce and broken families and the dads seem to predictably miss their kids' birthday parties. There are so many who are angry at their parents - angry teenagers and angry adults. And then there are all the people who've lost parents or kids or siblings in car crashes and so forth. Lots of therapists making a good living but don't know how much good they're doing. There's a general shortage of understanding, forgiveness, and healing, at least at first, but often that turns around after some explosions and trauma.
Almost all their parties, and there are lots of them, are well-attended with smart looking people all over the place drinking alcohol, a very high percent of alcohol drinkers, and usually it doesn't seem to effect them much. Lots of costume and Halloween parties - they clearly have Halloween more than one night a year. And what costumes. These are style conscious people. A lot of non-descript music and when you get into their big dance nightclubs it's even more so and all seem to be in the same giant room with tons of people packed in, lots with their arms in the air, thump thump music, smoke, tough guys up top one should be careful with, tough guys in back you don't want to meet.
It really irritated me at first about people that they walk away abruptly from conversations and hang up on the phone without properly saying goodbye. Later I got used to it and accepted it when I realized how much time I saved I would have wasted on niceties and slowly slipping away. They get their message across and that's it. Weird thing though, if they had wanted to talk more and were cut off, they'll keep saying hello into a phone that clearly is dead.
No matter what they were talking about anyway how could they believe what the other person said because if there's one thing they tend to have in common it is not telling the truth or holding back some terribly key bit of information that's gonna come back and bite them later - and they almost always get caught. They're so intent on making some impression that they sacrifice their integrity to fib about all sorts of things. Lying is like an engine that drives their lives.
Sonia's sad. It's because all the serial killers either get caught or get killed by serial killers who kill serial killers. There are some serial killers they don't get though that I have figured out. There's this woman who is such a sly serial killer. She's a touch elderly, erudite, and charming and every week wherever she goes there's a murder that she solves. It's so obvious that she's a serial killer who's framing someone new every week. She has some sort of power over them and can even get them to believe they did it. There are a number of serial killers like her who are having the time of their lives offing a person and framing a person every week. The odds against any other explanation are too steep.
What a place. Different stars in their sky. A good poker player in our world has to work hard at knowing the odds and reading other people and being patient and has a slight edge. But there, a successful gambler just draws great cards, like a one in thirty thousand royal flush. Lot of little things - like there, people who should know better don't use professional piano movers.
Innocent people who come upon a crime scene before police like to pick up murder weapons so that their fingerprints are on them.
They act in various situations in such similar ways it seems they came out of the same molds, molding them to be frequently angry and fibbers. In some instance it seems to be the same people going from place to place For instance there's a gaggle of press people yelling questions at once who meet important officials or people in the news leaving buildings. They create such a cacophony that no questions are ever answered and the people rush off.
They’ll sit outside playgrounds in their cars staring at children. Here, when people are in the woods and sleep outdoors, they tend to go to sleep early and wake up at the first sign of light. There the outdoorsy folks can sleep late and wake up in broad daylight - even when they're on a tight schedule. Just about everyone I've met has an Apple computer with the Apple logo prominently displayed. But the offices have generic non Apple computers. People don't use mice but type a lot of letters real fast to do just about anything. They drop things a lot and I think they do it on purpose because everytime they do, they see or find something that solves a pressing problem. They walk into other people’s homes without being invited in and then when they meet the owners say, “The door was open” and later, “I’ll let (or show) myself out.” Never me someone here who has the same dream over and over but when they talk about dreams it's usually one that's happening over and over, frequently for years or decades.
People are so sassy to police, especially young people. Shockingly rude to officers of the law. And if they get arrested, they only get one phone call, a strict rule there unlike here. They have a special breed of cats that screech the weirdest way at the scariest times, like when someone's walking backwards into a frightening dark room. And they come up quietly from behind people in such situations or any situation and put an unannounced hand on their shoulders or even purposely grab them to scare them as a joke. Cops and other good guys and gals consistently go alone into threatening situations without getting backup. Bad guys there spill the beans right before being foiled in offing the good ones thus providing substantial evidence that will be used in court to incarcerate them. And the good guys and gals are just as dumb in predictably not finishing off the evil ones completely for sure in a life and death struggle so that they have to fend for their lives once more but they always win that round too so they don’t care. It's much safer there to be targeted for death if you're not a bad guy. You can pretty much depend that if one has a gun pointed at you and says now they're going to kill you that something will happen to save you like somebody else unexpectedly shooting them. Too bad that rarely happens here.
People running from others chasing them in a natural setting, especially women, are likely to fall down at a time that not falling down would be of utmost importance. They sneak in other person's places to look for something important and then someone comes in and they hide and almost get caught but something makes the other person go away. Someone can be dying of thirst, get a little bit of water, take a swig and pour a bunch on their head - that's wasteful and suicidal. They should be guarding every drop and drink their own urine. Hardly ever see them turn on a TV but often see them turn TVs off with a remote, frequently in the middle of a report that involves them and without consulting others. Just about any time I see someone there watching a TV or listening to a radio, the seem disturbed and turn it off. When they have a bad dream they sit bolt upright in bed. They must be taught to do that in school. It's sort of like here but the history is different. They’ve got lots of history but it’s just a little bit like what happened here and would be confusing and misleading to people here. Horses can run forever unlike here where if they ran as much as there without resting they would collapse and even die. When people there give public speeches, they invariably decide early on to deviate from the written one they’ve prepared, at times tearing it up or throwing it on the floor.
They look better and often more heroic than us though it's usually just one man or at times one woman who sets things straight. Quite often the key to such hero's power is blood - inherited greatness, like royalty and wealth. Same goes for villainy. Descended from evil, you'll be a demon. Descended from the holy, you'll be a saint. Might look exactly the same as your ancestor too.
Some things there are very convenient like they've got all these bombs with LED number displays so you know how much time you have to disarm it or get away from it. They've got lots of people with miraculous psychic and other gifts and powers who use them in helpful and harmful ways almost evenly. In many ways people there are more predictable and less crazy. That helps the police and the many spies and many, many assassins because whomever they're tracking always goes to the same place at the same time every morning and orders the same thing and then at precisely such and such time departs and so forth. But then they screw up like by picking up the phone which rang right after they'd hung up with their trusted mate and they don't check to see who's calling but blurt out a bunch of info into the ear of their adversary who now knows they must be terminated. You'd think they'd have a strict rule to make sure who's on the other end because whenever they do that odd thing of assuming who's on the other end and not checking, they're always wrong.
There are some giveaways that you're in their world like they don't close doors or anything if they can avoid it. Their hair tends to stay in place even in outer space or windstorms. They can wave when drowning which is a plus. The buildings all have these big heating and cooling ducts above the ceiling one can crawl around in - like they were built for people to do that. If there's some other reason than to have bubble baths they don’t really seem to need to go to the bathroom. And speaking of plumbing - where else do strange liquids, mainly blood, come at times from faucets or drains? Or you know you're there when they go out in the rain without umbrellas or raincoats and seem perfectly comfortable, no hurry (or can it be not enough sense?) to get out of the rain. Or the impatient, rude way they ring doorbells and knock, knock, knock unless the person answers immediately as if they were standing on the other side of the door which is also rather common and like when they drive without a seat belt and don't insist you wear one without looking at the road but chat with you as if their ear could see and even if they're looking they have a lot of accidents especially when it's important not to like when they're running from a bad guy or a monster. They get followed a lot too - if a car that comes up behind them it's likely they're being followed.
One non threatening thing they do a lot in cars, together or alone, is sing along with the radio, and sing with gusto knowing every word perfectly - like they had been rehearsing it with a voice coach.
If you really need help from someone who's crucial to your goals, they're likely to stubbornly refuse at first, angrily, even violently, then gradually come along and change their minds, and maybe get cold feet again before really coming through for you. Lovers the same - often some resistance at first then throw themselves into it then something goes wrong and they walk away but then rush back for eternal embrace. Their world is based on an idea of heroism and romantic love achieving permanency with the only one right fated person, being the goal of life, the answer to all questions, even those of angles who will gladly give up blissful, divine, deathless states for a brief deluding emotion and fleeting sensual pleasure followed by nagging, heartache, and thrombosis.
Revenge also plays a dominant role in the these people's minds. For them it's a virtue. They could take a tip from Jesus on that but it's hard to resist that urge to get back.
The most striking thing to me is the incredible amount of energy that goes into it. The Seven Wonders of our world, the Great Wall of China, even our trip to the moon pale in comparison to all that goes in to making this place what it is. It's vast with many sub-worlds that weren't touched on here. And it is all administered quite skillfully and expensively. If the attention and care and resources that go into running their world was diverted to ours, it seems that everything would work out splendidly, all problems be solved. I'll ask Sonia if that could be arranged. I have her number here somewhere. Ah yes – it’s 555-555-5555.
Sometimes tons of these people meet in big auditoriums to celebrate how great and important they all are. Yet there's so little depth to their lives, almost no sense of a spiritual dimension. And yet I can't stop going there, might have to seek out a twelve step program to get away from them. They are herd creatures largely, predictable and moving around with each other. A few will stray now and then though when they meet, they're likely to utter, "Are you okay?"