Harlan Ellison’s Influence Beyond SF

RIP Harlan


Harlan Ellison is a fiction writer I’ve known about for many years.  I haven’t read him in a while and I’m only generally familiar with what he has written, but to the extent I’m familiar with his career I consider him a worthy writer and thinker.  He influenced the field of SF greatly and is particularly famous for an anthology he edited.  He was friends with the likes of Philip K. Dick, and I must admit I’d loved to have been around to hear those two having a conversation.

Anyways, my point for mentioning Ellison isn’t merely his greatness in the world of SF.  I happened across someone writing about him in another context.  This person claimed him as being his major influence as a blogger.  I’ll post the piece here in its entirety for I only could find it in Google cache.

The Broadband Teat: a blog by AustinCynic

Sarah Palin…

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Just watched an expensive ad on television regarding the fact that you should not recycle your plastic bags in the bins.  Plastic bags are a tremendous problem for the environment and so are take out coffee cups.  If the agencies responsible for the blue, grey and green bins found a way to recycle plastic bags  and coffee cups we might save some animals.  Surely there must be some use that the material can be reused for.  Surely someone could invent a way to make money from old bags.   I put my recyclables into a plastic bag and take it to the recycle room and sort it into the appropriate bins and then throw away the plastic bag into the garbage bin that goes to the landfill.  It would save time and effort if the blue bin stuff could just be dropped into the bin in the plastic bag.  On the other hand, we can put plastic bottles in recycle bins …so why is there that huge problem in the Pacific, a large proportion of which is plastic bottles.   Right in my own building…I cannot count the number of times I take the time to pull paper out of the plastic bin or plastic out of the paper bin.  People are just so lazy and ignorant.  The walls are covered with instructions and they still cannot or will not follow directions.


Sloth costs.   An internet friend has agreed to pick up boxes of Pros zines to take to Bistocon for the charity auction or to sell at orphan zine table for charity donation.  I went and got several small boxes to test packing.  The six British Takeaway zines just barely fit in one box which is a good thing.   The six zines are a tiny portion of the stack I have put aside as not keepers.   Every single zine I own I paid minimum 20.00 to purchase…never mind the additional money for postage.  This first box …if I valued each zine at 10.00 is worth 60.00..ouch ouch ouch.  I need money badly and here I am giving it away.    I really must buckle down and learn how to sell and ship.  I sold two S&H zines…very rare worth 40.00 apiece for 30.00/ea.  plus shipping which, from Canada, is exorbitant.   I set up Paypal for receipt of money.  She paid the postage into my Paypal account and will pay for the zines when they arrive.  Fingers crossed there is no hiccup.  It will encourage me to persevere in actually putting my zines up for sale on Zinelist.  I really would like to make some money back.  The thought of casually giving away 10,000.00 worth of zines for free just to make sure they get a good home before I die…well I am just not that philanthropic.   This first give away is full of zines I have just read in the last year and that I know I will not have time to ever reread.  There are about ten stories in the zines that I plan to type up for myself before they go.  The really really rare and valuable zines are also the ones I loved to reread and are currently keepers and those are the ones it would really hurt to just give away.

Yvi from Germany is stopping off for a coffee on her way to Algonquin.  I sorted my X-Files in the same way and reread the eight I felt ready to part with.  She may refuse to take them because she either has them or weight limits on flight home.  Since they are free she could box them and mail them home to herself.  It will be her choice.  If she refuses, maybe they will be the first zines I list on Zinelist to sell and mail off.    Baby steps.    I cannot donate to any university in the USA that might take them because I cannot afford shipping and if I have to wrap and ship and pay, I might as well go the extra step and sell.

So, why am I procrastinating here when I should be reading my way through more zines to put on give away pile, sort through which to read next, test pack a few more, type the stories I want to keep, list the contents of each box on the lid so they don’t have to open it to see contents, Printed matter for crossing border with list of titles.  I am feeling tired just thinking about all the work and this is not even putting a dent in the collection.






Told Bea about renting parking space..feel bad but really. Lori told me at beginning of March that Carol was selling her apartment and Lori wanted to rent my parking space.  She also said she doesn’t like my space on outside of building with snow blowing in on her Porsche but her mother could park there and Lori would park in Bea’s spot.  However,  the process of selling could take a month or two and they are driving to Florida  for the month of April  so I would be on hold with no surety. So at her convenience I should have refused to rent today and wait another month or two ..losing money. Am I wrong…I don’t think so but maybe I should have given her a choice. Problem is…I really really needed the money this month and even with the full amount of seven months rental (to October 31) I still will not be able to meet all my obligations and next month is tax month which brings its own debt. She is rich and likely will not understand and I would not have felt good about her having to pay me while she still had a parking spot that she had paid for on a contract she cannot get money back from. If she pays monthly, then she should have moved more quickly and informed Carol that end of  March she was leaving and locked me in or told me to give her first refusal. I sort of said okay she could have it and have gone back on my word. I feel bad. I hate feeling bad.   Her brother died November 25th and her father February 17th and she is dealing with her mother and probably too stressed for picayune things like this but it does seem like she has time for a lot of things and is perfectly capable and acts like she knows better than the rest of us how things should be done…so she should have put her money where her mouth was.  This is all bluster trying to make myself feel less like a schmuck.  I rented the space for seven months…hell it might take seven months to get the unit in shape and sold…who knows.   I do not care a button what Lori thinks but I hate to have upset Bea because she will have to listen to Lori rant about my faithlessness and feel bad that her friend disappointed/failed her daughter.  Rock and a hard place.

First day of spring, sun is shining, lake is still solid white.  Ash has bad diarrhea with pink spots…reminds me that vet visit will be on list of money exits next month.



Just got notice from vet’s office that Ash is due for shots.  Rabies is mandatory in my city but the combo is not and I had decided against letting her have it.  She is sniffing around fourteen years, she has not been outside to put paw on ground for five month this winter and even when we did go out it was never for long walks and she is not one for picking up stuff or sniffing other dogs.   The difficulty is…trying to stand fast against vet disapproval as they try to guilt you into something.   Information is so confusing.   As a human I have lived 95% of my life not getting booster shots for anything…so why does my dog need a booster every year (okay after decades they finally changed it to every three years).   Then there is all the controversy about vaccinations altogether.   My problem with vaccinations across the board is…combos.   I think each disease they are vaccinating for should be individual with time for the body to produce the antibodies for that disease before going on to the next.   If it is expense…they could stagger the shots …one type per year on annual exam.  That is my personal gut feeling which will stand me in good stead when I do not allow the vet to give Ash that particular shot.    I find it so hard to say no…anxiety attacks and stress but I am learning how and not backing away from the challenge of standing up for myself and what I believe…only took me 73 years.