Ever feel like the Internet has become void of significant social dialog?

That would be because you are correct. And by “the Internet” I mean “Facebook.”

It’s not so much a social networking site as it is a tool built for pushing (and absorbing) corporate media.

I

We mad fly; we
Dream dry; we
Scribble drunk; we
Fake the funk; we
Keeps it real; we
Sly conceal; we
Royal hall; we
Southern drawl; we
Bleed tears; we
Clink cheers; we
Fling curves; we
Gnaw nerves; we
Break it down; we
Class clown; we
Write raw; we
Down by law.

When I was young I often wondered what the world would be like if superheroes were real.

Now they are.

And I don’t mean that superheroes are real in the sense that single parents, hard working people, and people who go out of their way to help others are superheroes (though they are). I mean specifically that there are people out there who dress up in tights and help the city in costume as real life superheroes (except to be fair–it’s more like body armor instead of tights).

Robert and Maya worked at the Hall of Humanity. Maya worked as a half-time Level IV Administrative Assistant ($14.59 per hour), and Robert worked as a Level V Superhero ($42,396 per year).

They once had this conversation while passing each other in the hall:

ROBERT: Hi.

MAYA: Hi.

Are there any specific questions you’d like to be asked?

Not really. I’ve thought a lot about this, and I had too many ideas to even focus, so I’ll just let you handle it.

In 3000 BCE, papyrus scrolls allowed people to preserve oral stories in writing. Then, about 2000 years ago, people figured out that they could fold a scroll up into a codex, or even produce individual sheets of paper that could be bound into a book.

Around 1439 CE, Gutenberg’s movable type printing allowed people to reproduce books for the masses.

By the late 1800s, paperbacks were finding themselves in the most remote locations of the world. Books were more available to the general public than ever, but these books were still written as though the stories within them were consistent, straightforward narratives–oral stories on paper.

 

Over the past few years, I’d read great and magical things about The Nervous Breakdown Literary Experience in New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and sundry other burgs. I scrolled through photos and comments generated by each reading and thought, Holy hell, that looks tastier than pizza. Each city fielded a deeply talented roster and the sense of excitement and cohesion was palpable. I looked forward to Seattle’s shot.

 

At the beginning of Return of the Jedi, it’s like Luke Skywalker’s gone mad. He’s swinging that lightsaber around left and right, slicing here, dicing there–he’s killing up a storm with that thing!

Jabba’s friends and employees have no chance because–finally–Luke is a man!

He started out with a whiny voice, a need to get power converters at Tosche station, and absolutely no lightsaber. My how things change during the course of a trilogy.

I had not been a good king. The people were gathering to throw me from the castle and perhaps kill me. I was doomed.

Fortunately for me, this was only a dream. Unfortunately, when I woke up from the dream, I didn’t really wake up all the way from the dream.

I had such an incredible fever that I didn’t know my dream from reality. This sort of thing is tough when you look out your window and hallucinate a massive mob of angry citizens marching through your backyard to get you. I took it upon myself to freak out.

One night, a daddy longlegs came into my room and sprinted toward my bed.

Or, I should say, it sprinted toward my futon mattress, which rested on the floor of my basement apartment. I didn’t really have a bed.

And when I say “sprinted,” I mean it. It was like it was on a mission.

I was used to this sort of thing. I lived in a basement apartment.

A few weeks ago I started a literary publication called SPAM Publishing.

Now I have to deal with submissions and the impossible challenge of deciding what to publish.

How do I get myself into these things?

I’m at the airport, confident. I’ve never had vertigo in a plane before, so I’m not worried about jumping out of one.

Besides, my dad is jumping, too, and I don’t want to wimp out on him. Mom is here, too, documenting the whole thing in photos, so if I wimp out, there will be photographic evidence of my cowardice.

Let’s start with the Twitter advice for you, since the majority of you fit into that category. If you’re Johnny Depp or Mary Lynn Rajskub, you can skip to the relevant section.

Scenario: You are you. You’re on Twitter. You’re not totally lost, but you still aren’t sure why you’re there.

Well don’t worry. Because Twitter is a site where people type what they’re doing into the Internet and then nobody reads it because nobody cares.

I’m in Wu-Fong, in a car, fearing for the lives of everyone around me (my life included). The rules that govern Taiwanese traffic are apparently more like guidelines, and this frightens me.

My girlfriend is driving. She swerves the car into the right lane. How did she know there weren’t any motorcycles approaching on the right? I have no idea. It’s too complicated for me to keep track of.

I sit down at the bar, next to a friend.

He says, “Hey, what’s been going on?”

I take off my jacket. He waits. I take a moment.

Then I say, “Tell me: why do people always have to have stuff going on?”