Pebble Story/Monologue Collection

Brandr Usur

Guest
We what? Are you trying to say that we are on topic in the off-topic section by posting off-topic stuff?? :heh:
Maybe a pebble wanted more replies on his show-bit.

Maybe.

Forum titles. Festive. February around the corner. Just saying.
 

a pebble

Strategos
Maybe a pebble wanted more replies on his show-bit.

Maybe.

Forum titles. Festive. February around the corner. Just saying.
Maybe more than only 2 relevant replies with the rest being completely unrelated spam...I don't mind a bit of spam. This IS off topic. But spamming without giving any post relating to the piece is disrespectful not only as a writer, but as a poster as well. And I mean any writer and any poster, not just myself. It's kind of rude.
 

Archon of Corinth

Guest
Maybe more than only 2 relevant replies with the rest being completely unrelated spam...I don't mind a bit of spam. This IS off topic. But spamming without giving any post relating to the piece is disrespectful not only as a writer, but as a poster as well. And I mean any writer and any poster, not just myself. It's kind of rude.
I share your pain. A literary genius, like you, just can't seem to attract the adoring audience one deserves these days. :rolleyes:
 

a pebble

Strategos
I share your pain. A literary genius, like you, just can't seem to attract the adoring audience one deserves these days. :rolleyes:
Although horrendously sarcastic, you almost got it right. Literary genius isn't for me to decide, but I am an author. The work demands some measure of respect, just as any thread with a precise topic deserves.
 

Pushty

Guest
That's a horrendously elitist implication of what it means to be an author. If you're literate, it's an all-inclusive, de facto term.
 

Archon of Corinth

Guest
Although horrendously sarcastic, you almost got it right. Literary genius isn't for me to decide, but I am an author. The work demands some measure of respect, just as any thread with a precise topic deserves.
Respect, like beauty, can sometimes be said to be in the eye of the beholder. I presume that you are referring to public respect that humans generally show to each other out of politeness and courtesy although you could be to the concept of "Respect" as defined in Literary Theory.

I will presume the former. I have been aware on several occasions that you have treated me disrespectfully without apparent justification or rational explanation and used insulting terms towards me. Do not feel that you are entitled to some sort of predestined respect irregardless of the social relationships that arise as a result of your own behaviour.

Also I think that you need to consider the perception of other users of these forums. Most users here view you , not as an author, but as a moderator and even though you use Off Topic subjects to cultivate your work inviting positive commentary perhaps you should accept that we do not view as an author per se. We see you as a Mod and have expectations of you in that regard.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Brandr Usur

Guest
Would this mean that every piece of work from an author demands 'respect'?

I don't really know you, a pebble. I've posted a few times in the world(s) I play in and stayed away from the other sections mostly. I admit I haven't read much of your work, but I see that you've opened a lot of threads for your creativity. I would imagine that if the work you posted earned respect, it would've gotten it on quite a few occasions. Can't win them all, right?

The general vibe I'm getting from the things I did see, but I might just be misinterpreting 'tone' (as is difficult to convey over a medium such as this), is that you take yourself very seriously, maybe a little too much. My friendly, well meant advice is to lighten up a bit and accept that sometimes, you don't always get the response you would've liked. It is part of life after all.

Best,
B
 
Would this mean that every piece of work from an author demands 'respect'?

I don't really know you, a pebble. I've posted a few times in the world(s) I play in and stayed away from the other sections mostly. I admit I haven't read much of your work, but I see that you've opened a lot of threads for your creativity. I would imagine that if the work you posted earned respect, it would've gotten it on quite a few occasions. Can't win them all, right?

The general vibe I'm getting from the things I did see, but I might just be misinterpreting 'tone' (as is difficult to convey over a medium such as this), is that you take yourself very seriously, maybe a little too much. My friendly, well meant advice is to lighten up a bit and accept that sometimes, you don't always get the response you would've liked. It is part of life after all.

Best,
B
Obviously not every piece of work a writer puts out is worthy of respect. Some are barely suitable for wiping one's excretory orifice, and are certainly not worth reading. I think that as long as the criticism remains civil it is perfectly acceptable. I've read many of pebble's writings and have commented on a few, some positively and some negatively. In general I find most of it to be a bit too sullen and dark for my tastes, but I think he makes a good effort and has some real talent. I'm just not convinced that it will be enough for him to get published and actually make a living at it. There's a lot of competition out there.
 

Brandr Usur

Guest
Obviously not every piece of work a writer puts out is worthy of respect. Some are barely suitable for wiping one's excretory orifice, and are certainly not worth reading. I think that as long as the criticism remains civil it is perfectly acceptable. I've read many of pebble's writings and have commented on a few, some positively and some negatively. In general I find most of it to be a bit too sullen and dark for my tastes, but I think he makes a good effort and has some real talent. I'm just not convinced that it will be enough for him to get published and actually make a living at it. There's a lot of competition out there.
Alright. I hope my post came across the way it was intended: friendly. I wasn't trying to discredit him or attack him, just an observation. Who knows, I might go browse his work later. And I promise I won't spam in any of them.
 

a pebble

Strategos
That's a horrendously elitist implication of what it means to be an author. If you're literate, it's an all-inclusive, de facto term.
I would agree if you had read the post correctly. Sadly, you did not and have assumed too much. When I said author, I meant anyone that writes anything that originated from themself. If it came from them, it deserves a measure of respect, for the very least for poeple not to completely ignore what was written acting as if the writing was never submitted. It's a universal aspect of writing that the user respect what another person wrote. That's one main reason we have a no off topic policy in this forum- a respect between users.

However, as stated earlier, this thread is a gleaming example of disrespect to myself as the poster and as an author. If you had written a poem, a short story, a PnP, an informal letter, etc. and posted it online for the intent of others to read and reply, it would be rude for them to simply bypass your post.

Respect, like beauty, can sometimes be said to be in the eye of the beholder. I presume that you are referring to public respect that humans generally show to each other out of politeness and courtesy although you could be to the concept of "Respect" as defined in Literary Theory.

I will presume the former. I have been aware on several occasions that you have treated me disrespectfully without apparent justification or rational explanation and used insulting terms towards me. Do not feel that you are entitled to some sort of predestined respect irregardless of the social relationships that arise as a result of your own behaviour.

Also I think that you need to consider the perception of other users of these forums. Most users here view you , not as an author, but as a moderator and even though you use Off Topic subjects to cultivate your work inviting positive commentary perhaps you should accept that we do not view as an author per se. We see you as a Mod and have expectations of you in that regard.
Politeness and courtesy has come to mean respect in certain context, so I can be fine with that definition.

As for treating you disrespectfully, I most certainly disagree. I would argue that in order to disrespect someone, one must first have respect for said person or have a moral/social obligation to respect that individual. As I have absolutely no obligation to respect you and never had innate respect for you whatsoever, I do not consider it disrespect to speak to you the way I do. However, if you were to post a writing of any kind and I were to simply ignore the piece, that would be disrespecting the piece. I think it a universality that words and ideas conveyed by any source have a certain and specific meaning that transcends the individual level. It is the statement of ideas personal to an entity that deserve respect in their own thread. Most assuredly one could argue the same: in order to disrespect the writing one must first respect the ideas conveyed. Whether you disagree to the topic/content is irrelevant. I'm not asking you to respect the content, but rather respect that someone has conveyed an idea through words as a medium.

For example: in the Why I Believe thread, many users disagreed with me. However, they still respected the piece by not blatantly ignoring it and posting whatever they wanted inside the thread intended for that work.

Another example: Someone writes a philosophical argument to disprove God. I may disagree with the content and even reply with my own views in relation to my disagreement with that writing, but what I am doing still directly pertains to the ideas expressed by the individual. I'm respecting the fact that the idea was expressed.

If you were to post an idea in the thread, then immediately someone replies with a completely different idea and each user consistently responds to their idea instead, would you not feel like your idea had been robbed? I can't see how one would not feel cheated. That is exactly how I feel due to the work being utterly ignored. Cheated.

If I have disrespected any writing of yours that was not already disrespectful of another thing, then my apologies, but I have no recollection having doing so. If someone here has no respect for me as an individual, fine. I withdraw my objection to disrespecting me as an author and as an individual. I really don't care if you have a respect for me. However, I care inordinate amounts that you have respect for a writing, by me or another user.

Now, I really do not care to continue this debate here. You (or any other user, for that matter) may feel free to PM me whatever counter you so desire. But as per the off topic spam and disrespect, that ends now- for any writing by any poster so long as it remains within forum guidelines.

Listen, I want this place to be an open environment where anyone can post their writings from any literary range/genre in their respective threads, but removing that mutual respect for each other's writings is something I cannot and will not tolerate. Going off topic here and there a bit is fine and to be expected, but there comes a point or criteria met that ends up hurting the proposer of the writing. If you don't share that ideal with me, I'm sorry.
 
Last edited:

Pushty

Guest
I believe it's foolishly optimistic to expect any insightful criticism here; there simply isn't a core of writers with the necessary proficiency to expect anything other than "nice" or "I like this line". It was similar when I was running the section and I doubt it will ever stem outwards from that shallow truth. Whilst I accept your point, I find you're taking it too seriously for what it is and that only alienates the dominant cohort of this forum's frequenters.

As a side point, my response was not in reference to the main argument; but rather an aside stating that every poster is, irrevocably, an author and a writer.
 

a pebble

Strategos
The 34th Floor

Three years ago I died. Not in the human sense, no. I continued to breathe just as you are in this moment. Taking in breath after breath in some monotonous cycle that was bleak at best, depressing at worst. And, being the pessimist I am, I chose the latter – each breath grew more monotonous, more taxing than relieving. I remember on several instances I would hold in my breath to experience the new sensation of breathlessness. The feeling of exasperation filling my body, as my mind fought itself in the desire to have air and my desire to feel newness. Each moment without air, my lungs grew strained, hurting, as if they were ready to explode. And in this priming of explosion, I found my grandest pleasure – pain. Pain was new. It was refreshing – beautiful. I fell in love with this pain, it became my best friend. Every person I once called friend I slowly carved out of my daily routine. They were…routine. Same questions each day, asking how my day went. Feigned care covered their faces like a mask – I knew they only waited till the conversation went to them.

I sat in my room breathing in and out, at severe intervals, you see. Each experience was so precious as I knew the sensations found in pain would be different. Pleasure was always the same – breathing never gave anything new. I had breathed for years. What does breathing grant? Life? I stayed alive just as much as anyone else. Peace? I found more pleasure in breathlessness. Joy? Need I explain this once more?

The pain was my joy! It filled my heart with such power! Breathing! What power is in it? Everyone breathes, but it is rare for someone to say they will not breathe – at least for a while. In this power I relished, but soon even breathlessness became old. I turned to cutting myself. That maybe the amount of blood drawn could be a source for newness, for creativity. It was, for a time. Each scar was a testament to my power! To the pain I was capable of giving. But my body soon ran out of room. Nearly every part of my body capable of being covered by clothing was scarred. The idea of self-infliction grew to become as monotonous as breathing or breathlessness.

I scrambled for ideas – the monotony could not return! I refused to allow it to reconsume me! Oh yes, it was painful. And pain is newness for a time, so monotony must be new, yes? No! Even I have my tolerances and monotony was beyond me. I admired those that remained in the monotony. They were so beyond me in their ability to withstand than I. I watched in amazement as man after woman took step after step in their rut of a dream as if each trudge in the years-long mud was only their aspiring to something new. I knew I was the only one in search and demand of newness.

And that was the moment I found my source – the ultimate provider for pain! The unending source of newness was in fact that which I turned away from! Monotony. Not being part of it, no, most certainly not. But watching those endure it. Yes, it was inspirational, but even pain can be inspirational. I would argue the most inspirational. And so I watched the world unfold in monotony from my window on the 34th floor.

The first one I observed was a man. A married man, I presume. Perhaps only dating a woman (or cheating on his wife), but I know not. I, in my pessimistic nature, assumed he was not cheating on his wife. The truly optimistic thing would be to think he was experiencing newness with more than one woman. But I digress. The man – black pressed suit, red tie, real Republicanny-lawyer type. He purchased roses – ROSES. Of all the monotonous things! Oh the wife surely must have hurt deeply for this slight! How dare he! To provide such antagonizing of a gift! Oh woe to any woman unlucky enough to have a man so blind as to give roses! Of all the monotonies one could grant another, flowers is insult enough, but no! This man went to the monotony within the monotony with roses. The succulent red grandeur – how seductively, succinctly disgusting of a gift. Luring one in with such repetitive beauty. The walking contradiction – such are roses.

The only grace observed in this entire endeavor was that the woman was not given chocolate. Surely that alone would give cause to remove my wish to observe the world’s monotonies – some things are too disgusting to subject oneself to and chocolates with roses is one.

I awaited the moment where the man would give the roses to his wife in silent anxiety. Seeing the woman raise her hand and slap the man due to the degradation he was giving would be the only justice to be granted. When his wife came out of the store, she walked up to the man (now holding the roses behind his back). He took them out and suddenly the wife’s face turned red. In my mind I screamed to myself, “This is it! Get ready!!!” And then she hugged him.

What? What is this? Gratitude for monotony! As if he put thought into such a banal gift! What gratitude should be granted here? None! Any man may work, earn money, and then purchase roses! Not a single man is incapable of doing so. Where is the uniqueness? The newness? The thought? Nowhere! So why be grateful…

Something was deeper here than I could readily see. Perhaps the woman was crazed? I would suppose any woman loving of roses must be crazed. Perhaps the man is generally a source of newness and she did not wish to slight him for one moment of weakness? Maybe the roses were not enough and chocolates would have been the factor pushing one beyond? Was there a threshold for anger at monotony? Could there possibly be a point in which the most painful concept does not sting greater than the second greatest? I myself could not bear monotony in the slightest, but I knew not how great the pain tolerance of these people. Surely a beautiful observance – that of giving flowers and gratitude. Perhaps that was her joy, and his reciprocated joy. That he endured the monotony of buying roses and his joy from her ability to withstand the pain of receiving them? Certainly this is the case.

The man received no increased pleasure from buying the roses – there was no motivator unless he knew she would overcome the misery. Or perhaps it was a test! Yes! Does a teacher receive any joy in the giving of a test? Most likely not, unless the teacher is a sadist. But does the teacher relish in the idea of the student passing the test? All fine teachers, I would wager.

So monotony, especially which has a potential for joy, is only a test. A test that I opted out of taking. Did this mean that I was incapable of receiving the same joy? Possibly. However, I received a different form of joy unavailable to the test-takers. I was exempt from a potential pain of failing. Surely the failure of the test is the grandest pain? If withstanding the monotony test is one’s life and one fails the test, the individual has therefore failed at life. How grand a failure! How horrendous a death. One which may cause one to go breathless! One which may cause one to cut oneself. One which may motivate the individual to observe society’s monotonies from the 34th floor…..one which would create me.

Yes. I am the product of failure. The product of refusing to tolerate monotony. And now I watch the world in this cynical mindset awaiting for one to fail! Awaiting the day the 34th floor gains yet another resident. It becomes lonely at the top, so imagine how I feel being above them.

The second observance. Two friends were at a restaurant. The waiter came to their table and asked how the two people were doing. I shrieked in horror of the question, but the two simply smiled and said “Fine. Thank you.” Thanked him? Fine. They can pass the test. They seemed fine anyway. They were boring anyway.

The third: another couple. Man and a woman. Both driving down the road having a heated argument about the man not doing the dishes. For Christ’s sake, someone must be joking. Even the argument is monotonous. She was mad at the guy for not putting the dishes in the washer as he had promised. Perhaps she was mad at the fact he broke a promise – but I suspect it was due to the inconvenience it would cause her later more so than the didn’t-do-the-dishes promise being broken. Luckily – a heated moment! Someone was bound to lose their sanity and break the social contract they so unwillingly signed by being angry at the monotony.

The girl kept shouting “You always do this! Always the same thing with you!” She began realizing the monotony! She continued shouting at him with his only reply being that he could change – he recognized the monotony too. But she pulled over, told him they were through, and she drove off.

A grin slowly grew across my face for I knew a knock would come to my door that a new neighbor came to the 34th floor. Possibly two new residents. I sat in silence for weeks – months, even – waiting for the knock to come, but it never did. My door remained silent. I went to re-examine the two individuals. Both seemed happier than ever.

This made no sense! They failed! The test, this entire elaborate social construction had no sway. What was different? How were they any different than me? Then I realized it: neither were angry at monotony itself. They were angry at the other person’s actions – monotony was only a catalyst.

I came to believe I would never hear a knock at my door. How rare it would be to see another like myself – so enraged at monotony to exile oneself the 34th floor. This idea that I’d be the only one to experience this newness, this unique, distinct joy of observing monotony drove me to insanity. I scanned my view across the world, hoping – praying – that someone woul find the same displeasure in the world as I. Years passed by, each observance ending in similar fashion as the first three.

Then a faint knock echoed throughout the room. A quiet, whisper-like tapping at my door, signaling someone wished to enter. I opened the door and there stood a small man, very thing, emaciated. His face was grey, lips drooping, eyes halfway closed. He asked me “May I come in?”

Delighted over my new acquaintance, I welcomed him and provided a spot near the window. I pointed out several individuals he may observe. But his face stayed just as pained. Just as complacent. He did not care – as if the monotony still had a hold on him.

“Are you ok?” I asked.

“Are you? Why do you ask such familiar questions? Are you not here to escape such a thing? Such a pain? How dare you torment me with a banal statement as that! I know you do not care!”

“Indeed I do not care – I am curious! This is new, yet you remain just as pained. Your situation is, therefore, new. This grants joy to me.”

“How is watching monotony new? Is it not watching what placed you in the 34th floor? What caused you to be breathless? What placed those scars on your arms? You watch people endure what you consider to be the most painful. How is that a manufacturer of joy? Do you not wish them to be better? Do you not with them to grow and become creators?”

“Creators? No one creates anymore.”

“Indeed. No one creates. People only repeat. And watch people repeat.”

“I try to find new monotonies! I am creating a science!”

“New monotonies? How foolish can you be? There is no such thing! You seek the different types of monotonies you have yet to see as they are new for you, but you even know that these monotonies end all the same! How does the result grant you joy?” the man said.

“It…I…”

“It doesn’t! You don’t find joy in this! You find joy in knowing that you are inferior to others. That you were too weak to withstand the monotony. You have created a world in which inferiority is in the one that denies the world’s monotonies. What you have failed to realize is that the one that sits at the window is just as monotonous as the ones committing the actions 34 floors below. You sit by this window every second of every day, watching and waiting for newness. How is this not monotonous?”

“Because I find newness in their experiences.”

“You what? You most certainly do not! You find their struggle your strength. Do not tell me you did not relish in every observance as you expected them to fail. Then were filled with resentment and depression once you realized the monotony had won yet again. You know deep down that you are superior for overcoming the monotony – which the real pain belongs to those that deny the familiar. Were you not alone?”

“Then why are you here? You – overcomer of monotony? Are you not as guilty as I? You take your watch at the window just as I did so long ago.”

“Indeed – I am guilty. But if two men murder someone, one man’s guilt does not set free the other. We both are guilty of this, but I have realized it. You remain blind. And, unlike you, I have tried everything available to me and found no relief. You retreated from your problems.”

I was silent. I had no words to speak as a counter. Anything I said proved his point. After a few moments of silence, he left the chair, and went to his apartment on the 34th floor.

I tried looking out the window again. I found new things to observe! New things to see! But they all ended the same. I was made aware. Awareness became my monotony. The joy found from the window faded. I couldn’t watch the world – it was too painful. I took the blinds and shut out the window – the room went dark.

And there I sat – in the darkness. Waiting, hoping, praying something would change. But nothing ever did. The darkness consumed me, made me the thing I hated the most – monotonous. My body was darkness, my apartment was darkness, my life was darkness. The depression I avoided with such vigor came over me, shrouded my mind’s eye in the same way the darkness covered my physical ones.

But the depression…it was different. The monotony of seeking pleasure was gone. I experienced something new! Depression! Yes, yes! I began to see! The covering over my mind lifted and I saw what everything was intended to be – everything. Everything as intended to be everything – sadness, happiness, depression, joy, love and hate. All had its time and the points in which they were experienced were the times they were to be realized as new. Seeking pleasure so intently and in such blind ambition was the cause of my pain.

I stood out of my chair and went to my neighbor. I knocked loudly on his door, making certain the noise was heard. The door opened, and I saw him standing by the window watching as intently as I had been.

“You look on?” I asked.

“It is all I have. You do not? You are different. Changed.”

“Because I am.”

“How? How does the observer of monotony cease his watch? How have you overcome your depression?”

I replied plainly: “I closed my window.”