This semester, I'm still not late on anything, just vaguely one step ahead of all my obligations, and it feels like victory. Someday I will even write fiction again.

Incredibly well written story about fraternities that is also about law. Warning for white men behaving badly, exactly as you’d expect. Intro:
One warm spring night in 2011, a young man named Travis Hughes stood on the back deck of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity house at Marshall University, in West Virginia, and was struck by what seemed to him—under the influence of powerful inebriants, not least among them the clear ether of youth itself—to be an excellent idea: he would shove a bottle rocket up his ass and blast it into the sweet night air. And perhaps it was an excellent idea. What was not an excellent idea, however, was to misjudge the relative tightness of a 20-year-old sphincter and the propulsive reliability of a 20-cent bottle rocket. What followed ignition was not the bright report of a successful blastoff, but the muffled thud of fire in the hole.

Also on the deck, and also in the thrall of the night’s pleasures, was one Louis Helmburg III, an education major and ace benchwarmer for the Thundering Herd baseball team. His response to the proposed launch was the obvious one: he reportedly whipped out his cellphone to record it on video, which would turn out to be yet another of the night’s seemingly excellent but ultimately misguided ideas. When the bottle rocket exploded in Hughes’s rectum, Helmburg was seized by the kind of battlefield panic that has claimed brave men from outfits far more illustrious than even the Thundering Herd. Terrified, he staggered away from the human bomb and fell off the deck. Fortunately for him, and adding to the Chaplinesque aspect of the night’s miseries, the deck was no more than four feet off the ground, but such was the urgency of his escape that he managed to get himself wedged between the structure and an air-conditioning unit, sustaining injuries that would require medical attention, cut short his baseball season, and—in the fullness of time—pit him against the mighty forces of the Alpha Tau Omega national organization, which had been waiting for him.

It takes a certain kind of personal-injury lawyer to look at the facts of this glittering night and wrest from them a plausible plaintiff and defendant, unless it were possible for Travis Hughes to be sued by his own anus. But the fraternity lawsuit is a lucrative mini-segment of the personal-injury business, and if ever there was a deck that ought to have had a railing, it was the one that served as a nighttime think tank and party-idea testing ground for the brain trust of the Theta Omicron Chapter of Alpha Tau Omega and its honored guests—including these two knuckleheads, who didn’t even belong to the fraternity. Moreover, the building codes of Huntington, West Virginia, are unambiguous on the necessity of railings on elevated decks. Whether Helmburg stumbled in reaction to an exploding party guest or to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ is immaterial; there should have been a railing to catch him.
fiction: Holly Black, Margaret Ronald, Joe Hill )
rivkat: Dean reading (dean reading)
( May. 1st, 2012 08:58 am)
Eureka: Spoilers are still in the Matrix )

A Softer World: this could work for so many of my fandoms!

Rec: Pairing Pendragon/Merlin: Meta, really, in which BBC Merlin characters are Starz Camelot fans. I have rarely felt more directly hailed by a text! (As Sady Doyle once said, this must be what guys feel like all the time.) The embarrassing stuff is there, along with the love.

Interesting article on Foreign Policy’s gender issue (pun, sadly, intended).

space opera and Stephen King's daddy issues )
Please help! I need the name of an unmade horror movie that Dean Winchester would kill to see: the horror version of The Magnificent Ambersons or the Nic Cage Superman. That is, it should be an actual missed opportunity in the annals of moviemaking. Help me out and I’ll write you a drabble of your choosing.

review: Joe Hill short stories )



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