The Toadstool Bookshop in Keene Welcomes Joseph Carrabis Reading and Signing The Augmented Man

Come find out what The Augmented Man is really about

That’s right, you bet’cha, I’ll be at Keene’s Toadstool Bookstore on Saturday, 14 Sept 2019, 2-4pmET, reading and signing copies of The Augmented Man

 
The US Military concedes that any kind of combat leaves soldiers psychologically damaged and makes reintegration to society difficult.

The solution is to find individuals who are already so psychologically damaged the most horrendous combat experience will seem trivial by comparison. Better, find individuals psychologically damaged who’ve also experienced massive physical insult and trauma. Best, individuals psychologically damaged, physically traumatized, and emotionally vacant.

But where to find such individuals?

Captain James Donaldson suggests using massively abused and traumatized children as the basis, arguing “…they’ve already experienced more at home than they’ll ever experience in the field. All we need to is help their bodies catch up to where their psyches and emotions already are.

Nine individuals are selected for Augmentation and entered into combat.

One survives.

And comes home.

The Story Behind the Story
People’s reactions to The Augmented Man fascinate me. Yes, the book reads like a military sci-fi thriller, and intentionally so. However, the real story is in the metaphor of the abused child.

Children from abusive families tend to think of themselves as monsters unworthy of love, hence the suffering they go through – often without even being aware that what’s happening to them isn’t normal, a “fish don’t know they live in water” kind of thing.

This monster self-concept is often reinforced by society which, not being able to recognize the child’s trauma, blames the child for its behaviors and problems.

So for me, the real meat of the story occurs when Trailer (the main character) uses everything he’s been taught (to be a monster) to heal himself from trauma, and then further when he realizes how much monsterhood he must retain in order to survive in a normal world.

About me
You can find out more than you need to know at my About page.

Hecate and Gracie, Together Again

There are no egos in The Wild. Not for long, anyway

For about a week, Gracie and Hecate didn’t dine together. Regular readers may remember our previous post about these BFFs and we were concerned when we’d see Gracie or Hecate for a bit. Then one would come, not the other.

Not sure what happened.

Did these BFFs have a falling out?

In The Wild?

Such things don’t happen. Different species will often have overlapping territories. Members of the same species usually don’t unless they’re pack, colony, hive, et cetera, creatures.

Overlapping territories easily occur with different species when they require different resources; a turkey and a raccoon don’t go after the same food supplies.

This brings us to another territorial constraint; same or similar resource requirements. Example: two relatively equal predators usually don’t mark out the same territory. Unequal predators – fox and bear, for example – will have overlapping territories and you know the fox isn’t going to challenge the bear for a bit of food.

In any case, the rules of The Wild make good precedent for us Two-Leggers: Respect your neighbors. Clean up after yourself. Share when you can. There are no egos in The Wild. There can’t be. Egos are expensive and never worth their cost. Rules are simpler in The Wild. There are no empty threats; if Old One A shows a territorial display and you insist on invading A’s territory, A will respond with force to get you out of its territory. Two-Leggers are always making empty threats, most times because they don’t know what’s their territory and what isn’t; the border between selfish and selfless is poorly defined or doesn’t exist at all. Ego kicks in and attempts to create a territory where one doesn’t exist.

And Gracie and Hecate are together again. The borders are intact. We’re glad.

 
Besides, they were probably off visiting friends.

Owen and Jessica – Narration

Oh, dear! You’ve cut yourself!

I shared the written Owen and Jessica in a previous post. This recording was done at a Fiction Slam held at a local pub (I got 2nd place).

(we’re still taking a break from the steady diet of Empty Sky. I’ll return to it in next week, promise).

Do let me know what you think. Suggestions for improving this are quite welcome.

Click on the “post” above to open the story in a separate tab/window if you wish to read along side.

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Orianthe and Macon dine while Orville lurks in the background

How are your peanuts, my darling?

Following up on last week’s table feature, this week we delve into interbeastial relationships ala Orianthe and Macon, Opossum and Raccoon, enjoying each other’s company, exchanging recipes, planning an evening of romance once they’ve had their last cappuccino and gelato.

But wait, who’s that hovering in the background? Is it…can it be… Yes, it’s Orville, donning the guise of waiter when really he’s here keeping an eye on Orianthe, his daughter, lost to the…paws…of…

Oh, heavens! A raccoon!

I mean, of all things…a raccoon.

My God!

Oh, the shame. Oh, the Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner of it.

Fortunately, prejudices and ignorance don’t abound with the Old Ones. Peace is the rule – truly, even between predator and prey. Disagree? You’ve never witnessed the selection process in full – and interbeastial relationships abound.

My prayer for humankind, that. That interbeastial relationships might abound and we, as one species among many, might prosper.

 

Tom and Jeri

Tom’s showing his all and everything, and Jeri could care less. There are lessons here, folks…

Let this be a lesson to males who think they’re all that and more.

Behold Tom.

Tom is working it. I mean, just look at that robust malehood. It’s protruding – literally – from every place it can in Turkeydom.

A human male would be locked up for public…something or other. Nudity? Vulgarity? Obscenity?

I mean, guys…don’t you wish you had a… okay, I won’t go there.

But working it, Tom is.

Now gaze upon the…uh…lovely Jeri, pecking away at some seeds, paying no mind whatsoever to Tom who’s over here, doing his thing.

Guys, remember this the next time you’re out scouting for booty.

They don’t care what you look like. All that time in the gym, at the stylist, at the tailor, …

And ladies…don’t you think this is encouraging your bad rep? Not appreciating all that effort.

Wait a second…that’s almost role reversal.

Ha. Serves us right. And you, too.