Jan. 2nd, 2012

hradzka: Cassidy, from Garth Ennis's PREACHER. (Default)
As previously stated, I wrote one story for Yuletide this year. That story was...

*drumroll*

"My Master's Secret Mission," for LeBibish, in the I DREAM OF JEANNIE fandom!

If you haven't seen I DREAM OF JEANNIE, there are two things you need to know about it:

1) It is about a D/s relationship between a guy and God, and *God is the sub.*

2) It is about a D/s relationship in which the top is deep in the closet and the bottom COULD NOT BE ANY MORE OUT OF IT.

The premise of the show is that an honest-to-goodness genie (played by Barbara Eden) is rescued from a long imprisonment in her bottle by straight-laced astronaut Tony Nelson (played by Larry Hagman), when he crash-lands on a deserted island. Alarmed at being abruptly saddled with a drop-dead gorgeous blonde who calls him "Master," he sets her free, whereupon Jeannie's first action is to tuck her bottle into his gear so she can follow him home and *top the hell out of him from the bottom.* It is basically the second-kinkiest show of the 1960s after BATMAN '66, and that's only because BATMAN '66 was basically straight-up Victorian bondage porn.

I DREAM OF JEANNIE is full of astounding double-entendres (asked in one episode if she loves Tony, Jeannie cheerfully replies, "Heels over head!"), character humor (Eden is a *brilliant* comic actress, who takes a bizarre character and makes her loveable and real) and slapstick (Hagman is a marvelous straight man and brilliant at pratfalls), but it's also amazingly heartfelt. Eden gets to show most of the emotion in the series, because Hagman's Tony is so guarded and reserved -- but when Hagman lets Tony's guard down, and lets uncertainty and emotion show, it's just wonderful work.

The other major characters from the show are Tony's fellow astronaut Roger Healey, who is annoyed that his buddy's chief use of Jeannie is to save money on food when she could be blinking up gold and making them rich, and Colonel Alfred E. Bellows, the psychiatrist monitoring the astronauts, whose chief job is to walk straight-faced into absurd situations that can only be explained by Tony being eccentric, deranged, or sexually deviant, and then to relentlessly ask Tony to please explain what exactly is going on. At the time of airing, Colonel Bellows probably came off as thinking Tony was mentally unstable; watching it nowadays, at least half the time you get the impression that Colonel Bellows is wondering if Tony's gay.

The show is *amazingly* bizarre, and watching it is a little like falling into a parallel universe. You kind of hate yourself at first, and then you wind up loving it. I did, anyway.

LeBibish asked for a story involving culture shock, maybe something involving Jeannie's family. I kicked that around, trying to figure out how to make that an IDoJ story, and then figured the hook was work: Tony believes in work as an ennobling force, but Jeannie sees work as something painful and horrific to be avoided if at all possible. I think it came out pretty well. I tend to write tight third person, but I decided the best way to write this one would be first person, and the *funniest* way to write first person would be to try to pull off a Jeannie POV. It was an interesting voice challenge to pull off, and I'm really gratified that a lot of comments and recs said that I really got Jeannie's voice. I kind of wish the big showdown had gone on longer, but I also think Jeannie would have elided it, so it didn't turn out too badly.

Also, FWIW, my annual Yuletide statistics post is here, on the LJ Yuletide comm.
hradzka: (lobo sam)
So I may be eyeing my Republican primary absentee ballot in despair (DRAFT MITCH DANIELS), but lemme just give you guys a tip: C-SPAN usually sticks cameras inside the Iowa caucuses, and if it's going to be anything like previous election years, it'll be the goofiest people-watching you've done in ages. I'm curious to see how the Reps shake out versus the Dems; my favorite caucus moment to date was watching a lonely young Dennis Kucinich supporter wander forlornly from one bunch of caucusing Iowans to the next, looking for some way, any way, to get even one delegate for his man. This year I am guessing that the Ron Paul nutjobs are the ones to watch. They are basically the equivalent of the McGovernites, in that they are *kind of obsessed with their guy,* and Paul's organization has had a hell of a lot of practice in running things. Paul's guys have the fervor, and Romney's have the money, so they're the ones to watch.

One thing the Ron Paul newsletter thing has cleared up for me was a minor mystery. The magnificently batshit gun-nut ideological novel UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES, by John Ross, spends a lot of time on the erosion of various liberties in America. One way it does this is by having one major character go out of the country in the early sixties and return in the nineties to have the hero obligingly infodump him on how Everything Is Different Now, from gun laws to police seizures of cash to pharmaceutical restrictions. It's an effective bit of culture shock, and Ross does a good job playing up civil liberty concerns. Except part of that scene has the hero ranting about magnetic code strips implanted in US bills to track the flow of cash. It's just way-out-there nutbar stuff, and I always wondered where the hell it came from. Well, the current election cycle cleared my question up, because *just such a nutbar conspiracy theory was mentioned in Ron Paul's political newsletter.* My guess is John Ross was a subscriber.

It's a footnote of a footnote of a footnote, but when I read that solicitation letter it was like a lightbulb went off over my head. "Ohhhhhhhh, so *that's* why."

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hradzka: Cassidy, from Garth Ennis's PREACHER. (Default)
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The collected poems from my descent into madness year spent writing daily poems are now available from Lulu as the cheapest 330-page book they would let me make ($16.20). If that's too pricey, you can also get it from Lulu as a free download, or just click on the "a poem every day" tag to read them here. But if you did buy one, that'd be awesome.

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