The Weird Universe explores a human and natural cosmos that is not only stranger than we imagine, but stranger than we can imagine. The usual suspects are Paul Di Filippo; Alex Boese, curator of the Museum of Hoaxes; and Chuck Shepherd, purveyor of News of the Weird.
Items Tagged: web feeds
- New Review at LOCUS ONLINE October 20, 2014A horror novel of a different sort from Fowler:http://www.locusmag.com/Reviews/2014/10/paul-di-filippo-reviews-christopher-fowler/
- Pura Vida! October 19, 2014Just got back from Costa Rica, where I spent ten days studying Spanish. Some thoughts:Costa Rica hasn't had a military since 1949. Twenty-eight percent of the country is protected and kept in its natural state by the government, and about 10 percent more is protected privately. They don't mine their mountains. They get 90 percent of their energy from renewable sources, water and wind and volcanoes, and they're on track toward 100 percent. If you're poor and you qualify, you can go to the university for free, and maybe even get some extra money for books and transportation. The rest of the students are charged on a sliding scale -- my Spanish teacher got a 30 percent scholarship, which means that she only had to pay 30 percent of her costs. They have universal health care.It isn't a utopia, of course. San José, the capital, is crowded and undistinguished. Very few poor people make it to the university. You can wait for months to be seen by a doctor; you can even wait for an appointment to get an appointment. There's a ring road in San José that's been under construction for forty years.Still, there's something about the spirit of the place. When they pass a law saying you can't cut down palm trees in the jungle no one complains about the government trying to take away their freedoms; they just get on with planting trees on farms. When Nicaraguans come into the country to take advantage of the health care, no one is there standing at the border telling them to go back where they came from -- they know this is what happens when you have the best care in Central America. I met a fairly poor man, a security guard at night and a car mechanic by day, whose son wants to study eco-tourism. They understand that we're all in this together, that if we don't stop destroying our environment we're going to end up destroying everything.All of this seems to be what they mean by "Pura vida." It means "pure life" -- but you can also use it to answer "How are you?" or "How was dinner?" or just to say "Everything's cool." It all made me obscurely hopeful.More personal stuff later...Arenal volcano seen through clouds
- New Review at LOCUS ONLINE October 18, 2014What's the new Peter Hamilton like?http://www.locusmag.com/Reviews/2014/10/paul-di-filippo-reviews-peter-f-hamilton/
- 1953 Ad for Mystery Book Club October 15, 2014
- New Review at the B&NR October 14, 2014I look at a novel by David Cronenberg:http://www.barnesandnoble.com/review/consumed/
- In Which I Answer a Question about Words October 11, 2014I took part in a Mind Meld at sfsignal.com, about interesting words I've come across in my reading. I even managed not to rant about inappropriate words in epic fantasy novels. My two least favorites are "lifestyle" and "mind-boggling" -- for some reason I've seen these more times than I want to think about.