Wall words

When I was a kid I had an anthology of Cyril Kornbluth stories and one detail in the introduction made a big impression on me:  Kornbluth had lots of random notes among his papers, ideas, words, and phrases, and the editor of the anthology found it kind of poignant to look at these and wonder what stories they would have been.  Especially — and this phrase has stuck with me all these years — “ghosts in a Martian department store.”

Anyway:  while cleaning up the basement, I came across a pile of Post-its, which were on my wall when I was a creative writing grad student at Johns Hopkins in 1994.  Each of these, I guess, was something I meant to use for something.  I have no memory of what any of these mean.  But here they are.  Maybe you can use them.  None of them is as good as “ghosts in a Martian department store.”

  • “every third person in the world”
  • The Admonitionist
  • assapanic
  • “Bald men, a lot of them — yeah, that might work!”
  • Rick Ziggurat
  • The First Church of Christ Plaintiff
  • Community Reaction to a Horrifying Event – Arndt
  • out of the fishy-smelling steam
  • reckless use of a highway
  • THE UNDERTAKER’S BIRTHDAY (Did the stripper shoot the corpse?)
  • The grandfatherly crook gives a motivational lecture to fifth-graders
  • “you slug in a ditch!”
  • Solomon “Duck-Duck” Goos
  • A first line:  “Here’s something you might not know.”
  • “luz” — “an unidentified bone…”
  • The hobo community, waiting /expecting (esperar) for rich couples to pick them up.
  • The apocalypse counselor “If the sun went supernova, we wouldn’t know for eight minutes.”
  • “Of course, there is some element of risk involved in building a house out of oily rags.”
  • steeped in regret
  • Chief Louis Anemone NYPD (red)
  • “This guy’s been shot.”  “No kidding — you think he’ll make it?”
  • HIDALGO – hijo de algo
  • fetus/treatise
  • fuckadelphia
  • abacinate
  • “Victory without a whimper…the only sound:  excellence.”
  • “The ghost of Knute Rockne is living and he is smiling.”
  • “That’s a big number, but it’s a heck of a lot better than infinity.”
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9 thoughts on “Wall words

  1. Jeff says:

    I like ‘fuckadelphia’.

  2. JSE says:

    Who doesn’t?

  3. carl says:

    That’s a play on Rick Vigorous.

  4. JSE says:

    I’m sure you’re right but I think it was unconscious plagiarism.

  5. Jon Awbrey says:

    Alternate time lines are always a stitch …

  6. Joseph Nebus says:

    I sense a popular Twitterbot in the makings!

  7. Shecky R says:

    Post-its from 1994!?… this may certify you as a hoarder :-(
    (of course, if you can believe this, last time I moved I found my ruler from the 5th grade; but hey, it still works!)

  8. NDE says:

    hidalgo = hijo de also (“son of something”) is the right etymology, and also a window into a time where you were either nobility (something) or not (nothing); cf. Shakespeare “Why, you are nothing then: neither maid, widow, nor wife?” (_Measure for Measure_; the next line expands on this: “My lord, she may be a punk [prostitute]; for many of them are neither maid, widow, nor wife.”).

  9. Izaak Meckler says:

    Hablas tu espanol? Y si no, por que estaba en tu mente? (No se como hacer acentos con mi teclado)

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