[ssf] pulp fiction ii :: unicorn variations i

adam basid adam at diamat.org.uk
Fri Mar 30 13:51:25 BST 2007

i. fastwords

black and white
  lines snow coal
  read plums strung together
   pen soup dragon kitchener
   brassed off gas metre
    time and time again
     again synopsis vortigern --
      outsourcing security
       saxon blackwater
        regulatory capture
          cleansing still katrina
           selfish, mercenary
            copper dam robbed previously

            home reaction delayed
            home guards elsewhere
             extra curricula
             alexandra per mission
             red all about it
             usual story
             supplies not the may west
             get here we'll do the rest

    keep a black watch
    on them lads lads
  go get the gherkas
  black water capture
   praetorian watch manhattan transfer
    timarchies time-share tooling-up
     nuclear alchemists
      selling security plagues
       major undershaft barbara economics --

         corporate males couples
         big coranian bugging curse

         many bodies shredded
         many bodies dead ---

        ---  listening you
             lludd bran flakes ---
             hook up the dead freights
              wo wohnen du voritmer

                 we trade heads so
                 we trade tales doe

                    hop ears trade shouts
                    cor ports rinse out

ii.  crosswords

  i left the officer there listening
   to the bells of the cathedral --
    proceeding orderly mist mission
     dunelm prince dragon sausage
         maple syrup acting hams
         kingsgate footbridge
         madness passing
         reopening past exams --

          wu-grenfield professor there --
          bridging perching
          turquoise suit tails aflapping
          exposing waist coat golden
          thob watch throbbing blushing

          on the poyws
          perching from high chairs
          hired off tennis umpires
          still lords aleaping
          danger still rescue beating
          in to sharp eye-teeth
             gnashing incisors
             incised meanders
             back molars bungied black battered
             cuts mangles bows black ribbons

           professor flaps waving
           exposé, new broad sheets --

                two sheets big features
                 b'big crossword puzzles
                 statistics --

                          81 x 81
                          no waist
                          quadrangle --

           professor calling:

                  'extra, extra,
                   lead all about it

                    two sheets
                    two sheets
                        to who'

           at the professors feet
           lies two piles of sheets --
                         set copies

           and there too gathering bridging
           rake o'students --
           puzzle-feat undertakers --

                      i distracting
                         mist the first bit
                            missed the question
                               fishing watching
                                   eyes caught

           the professor's drew me back in ...

                  '... so you understand our experiment
                   good good

                   well well
                   lets get this snow on the road ...

                   on this side we have the puzzles
                   that have been already solved
                   by others

                   on this side we have
                   a brand old spanking
                   new version of the crossword
                   designed by the same authors ...

                   no, that's not right ...

                   hold your horses ...

                   which way round did i have them'

           -- the professor's head lowering
              examining each top sheet trifocal
              but above prinz-neeze looking
              shiftily rake o'student watching

           the professor's head raising
           again grinning --

                  wouldn't you like to know
                  which way round i have the puzzles

                  half of you ...

                  split in to two groups please ...

                  yes, that's right ...

                  even groups please ...

                  no not you lot together again ...

                  gentlemen, i use the term loosely ...

                  you will skew the statistics ...

                  you will make your group odd ...

                  and you, yes you two ...

                  if you would just disentangle yourselves
                  for a little while ...

                  there, oh yes there, there do we have it ...

                  does it feel strange, the separation ...

                  like swimming in air you say...

                  no you can stay in the same group if you wish ...

                  wait, you may skew the statistics ...

                  but stay together you may ...

                  but do do the puzzle by yourselves ...

                  remember this is a experiment

                  no winners, no losers

                  so copying need no please ...

                  there we have it ...

                  two lines ...

                  roll up,
                  roll up '

           the students file past the piles
           each taking one sheet

                  'what's the story professor' -- i venture

        again over prinz-neeze professor staring --

        'i know you from somewhere,
         do i not

         wait, wait what's that spot ...
         it's very misty

         was it a dream ...
         wait it's clearing ...'

  'professor' -- i caution

        the prof continues --

        '... no, no don't tell me
         some place dense ...
         some fig-roll of my imagination mayhaps
         oh yes, that's the place ...

         parties ...

         you always appear at parties  ...

         and seldom appear in class'

   'i go to the vital ones professor ...' -- re-venturing i

    '... but what's the story balamory
       what gives with the crosswords'

        'ah that story ...'
         -- began the professor --
        'i thought you were being reflective ...
         ... the story we are testing here
         is this one:

            one is more likely to solve crosswords
            that have already been solved elsewhere'

  i went next --

  'i've heard a tale professor
   about a female monkey
   living in an island colony
   dipping fruit in to the sea
   to supplement its offspring's
   mineral diet,

   the island colony picked up this behavior first
   and then it appeared to replicate
   in various monkey colonies
   world over

   professor ...

   are you suggesting that we are monkeys'

        professor grinning batted it back to me --

        'monkeys have tales
         and let us put it this way ...

         i maybe suggesting
         that we maybe human ...

         what ever that means ...

         ... are you in a rush somewhere
         there's a question we ought to ask'

  'me professor me timeless and undesiring ...

   but a bit like a fish out of water

   all the same ...'

        professor head sadly shaking --

        'now you are in a bog elliot
         i won't keep you long
         one time-unit only
         solely the lonely
         oh fish, oh fishy
         so little matters'

    me replying nodding fishing
      dredging dark dank boots
         head laced footballs replaying --

  'aren't we all in a bog though e.t.'

        'oh fishy mayhaps you'd like
         you'd like, you like some fresh air'

        -- the professor head still shaking
        fishes in to up-turned hat
        producing two long pencils
        like poppins from her kit bag
        passes dummys one to me

  i pencil use
        creamy white stain
            upon said up-turned hat

            'what's that' -- i venture

        'mmm ... rice pudding me thinks'

         -- glints the professor unabashed
            puts on dripping hat
            turning slowly now tap dansing
            twirling white secondary stain
             turquoise flaps tail strains'

  'two helpings,
     were you hungry professor'

      -- i venture

        'no not me ...'

         -- still glinting

         '... france was hungry
              i was cooking
              and i cooking slipped
              in to the cooking mix'

   'were you moonlighting then'

     -- i venture

          paid work's nice if you can get'

          -- chirps professor tap danser

         'how do i look
          do i max an x factor
          cooking pudding on my top hat
          pudding cooking on my tales'

          the professor now slowly bending under
          pun strain, begins rolling pin up
          redundant crossword
          tightly round long pencil
          nodding and leading me

          i reflect the professor's rolling
          around on the floor,
          an other re purpose puzzle

          completing pace meeting
          thick gummed long edge lick sticking
          close envelope
          held mace fist til fastened

        'snakey shakey' -- motions nows professor
                           paper-straw waggling
                           pencil ejecting

               i shakey too snakey
             popping pencil in concert

        'now ...' -- continues the professor

        '... here's the rub --
         these two straws burn unevenly
          unsame crossword patterns
           but both these straws same burn-time
            two time-units burn exactly
              burn from to end-to-end


           a) can you make
              a method of measuring
              exactly one time-unit burn
              from these two two-time-unit straws

                      ... and ...

              here's the unpicking penelope ...

           b) what kind of thing am i after,
              what am i asking you to manufacture'

        -- the professor crane bends then
           wrist flips paper scripts
           straws spinning in either
           contracting fusing
           dimension jumping
           shortens straws shizam --
              size of builders pencils
             catches sticks behind cor ears --

        'court fishy
         one lame king is another's dishy'

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