Category Archives: Writings

Me in the Mirror


Girl in Mirror by Fox Harvard Photography
Girl in Mirror by Fox Harvard Photography

I was hanging out with a very beautiful girl in the bathroom. We were getting along so well and she had laid out everything I desired on the counter top. She was naked.  Her breasts were exquisite and her figure was incredible. Casually I looked at her in the mirror and that is when things began to appear different than what they seemed. For as I looked in the mirror, I saw only my naked self looking back at me. I tried not to think anymore of it. We played around some more before she asked me to sit down in a reclining chair. When I did, I felt that I couldn’t move. I struggled to get up but it was to no avail. Then I felt a pressure as something began to invade and thrust into me. The girl told me she was going to kill me. I was being raped and impaled to death.

The Cave of the Man Who Got Really Out


The Cave of the Man Who Got Really Out
The Cave of the Man Who Got Really Out

He ran into the cave…

And took out some matches.

He shared one with his friend.

They hold hands so they don’t have to get lost.  A man was trying to get out to kill them.

They ran down the path…

And fell into a pit when his torch dropped.

When his torch fell to the bottom it hit the magic ground and turned into a monster.

The guy who was chasing them got eaten and the monster can’t walk anymore because they gave him poison to drink.

He accidentally touched the button by purpose and he got wine to drink.

A door was closed.  Nobody gets the treasure forever because they forget the key.

He climbed a rope which leads up to a secret door in the ceiling.  Now he’s got a way out!

The end of this great book.

Download this great book.

A Creation Story


Sleeping on a Buoy
Sleeping on a Buoy

There was a time when Primordial Self had to take on the forms of man and woman to exist.  I wonder if some force warned Self with a caveat of existence.  A guardian of recreation who would say something like: “Gain the ability to be born once more and I guarantee you a cosmic infinite sea of death filled by the tears of your forgetting yourself.”

And there was poor Primordial Self with no idea who or when or where or why it was, but faced simply with the choice to continue.  To this day this incarnation of Self has no idea.  But if I had to defend my old actions and future ones as well to some higher guardian of the threshold, I would say: “By my actions an infinite sea of death and tears is filled, but on it’s surface floats a beautiful boat.  Where on it sails, who can say?  For whom does it rock sleepily in the waves?”

And if I was God?


Banded Sea Krait by Jim Christensen
Banded Sea Krait by Jim Christensen

How often do people wish for something out of their reach?  Well, if they but had the power to grab it, surely they would.  To what end would they bring their conquest of will?  Palaces and luxuries would seem trifle to them for they would have immortality and eternal control.  How dualistic…

And if I was God?  Would I have it differently?  In a world of two extremes, I might be as guilty.  But if I was God, who is to say that I would see past this folly with my great wisdom?  I would trick my dualistic nature into a prison of discernment: making him think that he was a self that suffered in a world of others.  Everything would be as it was now, and I would be realized not in one piece of the grand scheme, but in its entirety.  So, if I was God, I would be writing about being God as Daniel Bank, not realizing that I was, in fact, God.

The Dying Gaul


The Dying Gaul
The Dying Gaul

No equine ride into the town square this time, this is a different kind of victory,

The victory of a strong arm defying an increasingly heavier weight –

An increasingly weaker arm.

His head bends now as that of one bowed in thought.

After the battle rages, others will ride forth on their horses into the town square.

For now though, the surrounding clamors begin to ebb,

As if to regard a final moment of intimate thought.

This is a different kind of victory.

Sies


Sies the Blissful
Sies the Blissful

Way back in high school, circa 2000, I created a character based on a commonly used emoticon in the chat room I frequented.  The character was called Sies (pronounced ‘SEES’ as in ‘ she SEES you’,  If you can’t tell already, his emoticon is :D (a big smile).  There was something appealing about the simplicity of Sies, so I created more characters based on other emoticons.  The characters were divided into two distinct groups, the Happies and the Angries.  Minor characters were also developed, but by this time the trend was starting to die off.  The rest of this post will discuss the various Happies and Angries.

Erty the Happy
Erty the Happy

Erty the Happy is happy like Sies but taken to such an extreme that it sometimes can be a problem.  In his possession is the Happy Wand, an artifact that radiates pure joy.  The Angries are constantly plotting ways to steal the wand and hide or destroy it. If not for the watchful eye of Pootems, such a dastardly deed would have already transpired. Erty’s happiness is best utilized rejuvenating the lands after they have been blighted by the Angries. In times of peace, his happiness can be a liability because it becomes over-abundant and out of control. The emoticon of Erty is also :D.

Pootems the Judgemental
Pootems the Judgemental

Pootems the Judgemental is the keeper of the sacred word that makes the enemies of the Happies cry. Although he is ranked among the Happies, Pootems is nonetheless very serious and judgmental. He is the judge and punisher of the Angries. Diminutive in stature, Pootems is nonetheless one of the most powerful beings in the realm in both strength and cleverness. For this reason, Pootems is the adviser of the Happies. Pootem’s emoticon is :o.

Flambytoes the Adventurous
Flambytoes the Adventurous

Flambytoes the Adventurous was originally a minor character and not part of the Happies.  However, he became a very popular character due to his shape, emoticon, and nifty rocket feet.  Thus Flambytoes came to be part of the Happies. Flambytoes is the fastest character.  He is also the only character with the ability to fly and is often seen as a messenger of the Happies, conveying their messages to others and reporting back news of the realm. Of all the Happies, Flambytoes is the most faithful in his service to Sies. The emoticon of Flambytoes is ^_^.

Mooflor the Scary
Mooflor the Scary

Mooflor the Scary is small like Pootems and almost as powerful and clever. He might be considered the leader of the Angries due to his propensity to cause unhappiness. Mooflor’s favorite hobby is to hide along commonly-traveled roads and jump out to scare people as they pass by. When not scaring people, Mooflor plots mischief against the Happies, such as stealing Erty’s Happy Wand. His emoticon is >:€.

Ukhed the Angry
Ukhed the Angry

Ukhed the Angry is the largest being in the realm and also the most angry. Fortunately he is also quite lethargic and seldom acts on his anger. Instead Ukhed broods in his cave and curses others for behaving in ways that he feels are an affront to him. Ukhed is dim-witted and selfish, only doing things that he thinks will please himself.  None of these things turn out to bring Ukhed much pleasure though and, in the end, he finds himself back in his cave blaming others because he is not happy.  When Ukhed is motivated enough to join Mooflor’s cause, he can be a powerful ally and their mischief-making usually is successful for a time. Ukhed’s emoticon is >:[.

Borchax the Mysterious
Borchax the Mysterious

Borchax the Mysterious is the least seen and least understood of the characters. Some might count him among the Angries because of his inherent creepiness and love of dark places. Really though, Borchax is neither angry or happy because he is too mysterious to be pinned down. He is the manifestation of risk, gambling, chance, and the double-slit experiment. Borchax tends to show up when he is least expected and his appearance causes profound changes in any story, though always indirectly and never because of anything he has purposefully done.  His emoticon is 8E.

Crabavad Gita


Crabavad Gita
Crabavad Gita

Motives
I sit on the jagged limestone overlooking the Crimson Beach of Peleliu; what a paradise it is. But in my thoughts, I grow discontent. I realize that within the century, these waters were red with blood: Men died here for purposes greater than themselves; and perhaps the greatest purpose is within them, the struggle to survive. I look down upon the rocks and see dozens of crabs hopping around and chasing each other. I laugh for a second, but recognize the same purpose within them. A blacktip distracts me as it splashes around momentarily in the waves of the ebbing tide before it submerges beneath the waves again. For the moment, I see Myself and mind the great purpose. And in my heart, i am home.

The Story
Crabs have always reminded me of survival ever since I returned from Peleliu. So I wanted to tell a story of survival with the characters being crabs. The story I chose is none other than the Bhagavad-Gita. I will do no justice to the book. I will not even come close to representing it’s ideas. The only connection is the situation: survival, and hero’s doubt arising from that.

Under his leaf, Arjuna sits in repose. It is better to stay home without much ado.
Under his leaf, Arjuna sits in repose. It is better to stay home without much ado.
In the distance, Arjuna hears the clicking of claws. He has harkened to the sound of war many times and has grown tired of fighting. Arriving to the battle, he sees that his adversary is his own cousin. In his despair, Arjuna flees across the sand. If not fighting, one must flee. Where is the refuge of the eternal?
In the distance, Arjuna hears the clicking of claws. He has harkened to the sound of war many times and has grown tired of fighting. Arriving to the battle, he sees that his adversary is his own cousin. In his despair, Arjuna flees across the sand. If not fighting, one must flee. Where is the refuge of the eternal?
In the palm of Krishna, Arjuna is mindful of the situation. If he need not fight, he is the righteous crab. Yet inaction is still action. Who denies the nature of things and is still not in accordance with their nature?
In the palm of Krishna, Arjuna is mindful of the situation. If he need not fight, he is the righteous crab. Yet inaction is still action. Who denies the nature of things and is still not in accordance with their nature?
Nature is the biggest thing, and even free will cannot deny it. By whose claw is the enemy destroyed? Arjuna has commit no action. Krishna has written the story by which what is created is also destroyed.
Nature is the biggest thing, and even free will cannot deny it. By whose claw is the enemy destroyed? Arjuna has commit no action. Krishna has written the story by which what is created is also destroyed.
It is time for action, good and evil. Arjuna charges into battle with the enemy. His claw is mighty and his shell is thick. It is ordained that he will be victorious.
It is time for action, good and evil. Arjuna charges into battle with the enemy. His claw is mighty and his shell is thick. It is ordained that he will be victorious.
An enemy is vanquished. The idea of an enemy will always be. Arjuna returns to the shelter under his leaf, pure in action because of his diligence to his nature. Action is still inactive on Krishna's way. Much easier is it to stay home without much ado.
An enemy is vanquished. The idea of an enemy will always be. Arjuna returns to the shelter under his leaf, pure in action because of his diligence to his nature. Action is still inactive on Krishna’s way. Much easier is it to stay home without much ado.

Sino-Boogarian Doodles


Kung Fu Master
Kung Fu Master

This post is about my current style of doodling, which has been heavily influenced by Chinese characters.  The story begins in 2004 when I first started to study the Chinese language.  I was attracted to Chinese primarily because of its written characters.  They are visually appealing to me because they are glyphs.  Each character has an intrinsic meaning unlike the letters of the English alphabet that need to be combined to form words.  You can literally see the meaning of some characters.  Some examples are: 木,火,山,手 (wood, fire, mountain, and hand, respectively).  Other characters have patterns which suggest their meaning.  For instance, three dots on the left side of a word suggests a meaning related to water or fluidity.  Some examples are: 酒,海,渴,流 (alcohol, sea, thirsty, and flow, respectively).  The symmetry and shapes of Chinese characters really speak to me.  The more complicated the character, the more I like it.  Perhaps for this reason, I chose the Chinese name 钱达友.

Volcano
Volcano

Let me stop here to disclaim that I do not think I write beautiful Chinese characters.  In fact, most Chinese probably would look at my characters and recognize right away that they were written by a foreigner and/or a small child.  However after writing thousands or tens of thousands of characters I began to get a sense of the atomic parts of each character.  As I acquired this knowledge, my doodling began to evolve and incorporate the strokes used in writing Chinese.

Let me stop again to disclaim that I almost used the word “draw” just now, when what I really mean is “write”.  This is a common mistake that Chinese students will say.  Indeed I do feel like I am drawing when I write Chinese.  Maybe that is what I find so enjoyable about it.  I’m not writing an essay, I’m drawing pictures!

So anyway, my doodles changed.  I guess there is not much more to say about that, for now. Throughout this post, you can see some examples.  The rest of this post will be on some back story of each doodle and my vision for them in the future.

Fincon Master (the Hexacant)
Fincon Master (the Hexacant)

The Fincon Master, also known as the Hexacant, is an evil magician who lived long ago.  His powers were such that he could control the Fincons, small flying menaces that individually were not dangerous, but in swarms could devour entire armies.  For a time, the Hexacant was revered by his people and his wrongdoings went unnoticed.  His injustices were eventually outed by a young man who would later become the Chief.  The Hexacant fled into the caves where few would follow.  He journeyed deep into the earth pursuing arcane knowledge.  In the lair of the Borchax, he met his doom.  Ages later, a group of adventurers would undertake a perilous mission to recover his body and restore him to life.  The mission would cost all of them their lives.  But that is another story.

Hut
Hut

Deep in the jungles of the Shadow Island, there was a hut that few had ever found, and fewer yet had ever approached.  It sat on a raised wooden platform and was ringed by the heads of seafarers who were unfortunate enough to be marooned on that island.  The denizen of the hut was the steward of the island’s one lake, a portal to the land of the dead.  Everyday the lake’s waters restored it’s guardian’s to youth.  This blessing came also with a curse which caused the guardian to live in constant fear and suspicion.  For their reign lasted only as long as they were not slain by the next steward, in the same manner by which they had inherited the position.

Elementalist
Elementalist

The Elementalists are worshipers of fire in all its forms, the highest of which are the stars of the heavens.  For this reason, they are sky watchers, tracking the movements of all the stellar objects.  The Elementalists believe the future is written into the stars.  Their astronomers are said to predict future events by tracing the constellations and chanting aloud.  In actuality this tradition is one of story telling: the greatest bards inspire claims of divination because they have internalized the stories in all their forms.  The eyes of an Elementalist have their own magical properties.  They are imbued with the fire of sight, giving them the ability to see in the dark.  They can also read the magical runes of the Elementalists which are invisible to laymen.

Adventurer
Adventurer

So what is my vision for all of this anyway? Well as you might have read, I do have lots of loose story elements and random doodles.  I hope to someday compile these tidbits into a full length novel (or at least a compilation of short stories which form the basis for a mythological universe).  Eventually, I would also like to design a role-playing game around these elements.  I hope you enjoyed them.

Sources:

Zhongwen.com – Awesome Chinese resource

The King of Nemi – I shamelessly ripped this motif.