December 23rd, 2008

serious.business_cover

parking ramps, mortal coils, and happy endings

What did you expect? An "IT WAS ALL A DREAM" ending? Mind, I love those, don't get me wrong.

But instead, I found myself in freefall, taking halfassed bets with myself on who would reach the finish line first: terminal velocity, or the asphalt below.

Turns out that it's true what they say about your life flashing before your eyes in your final moments. It holds true even if you're a ludicrous fictional character, and life as you know it has been entirely made up, and not made up very well, either.

In my mind's eye, I saw the Rev, screaming at me in his office, his cum-stained portrait of Ronald Reagan falling forward helplessly on his desk from the force of his belligerent, bald, wrongheaded anger. I knew he'd have more luck with his next project; he usually did have better luck, for better or worse. Goodbye, Rev. LaRock.

I saw Cherille, smiling at me so gently, so sweetly, as I cupped both cheeks in my once-so-lucky hands. I'd never be so lucky again. Goodbye, my beautiful Cherille.

I saw "inadvisable" rap battles, squandered bait-shop sponsorships, missed but admittedly retarded Vonnegut references, some guy named Curtis who used to be pretty important in the scheme of things but whom I'd totally forgotten about somehow in this crazy, mixed-up world of ours.




On the way down, in the midst of this flood of asynchronous memories, I even saw a very disinterested Lindsey Jane sticking her heads out of the fifth floor of the parking garage. She had roughly 17,564,977 heads, but only about 1,900,582 of those heads were actually active in some way (as of this afternoon, anyway). A huge number of those heads couldn't even speak English; go figure. Of course, I only remembered her as having one head, but people change, I guess.

"Linds, I'm about to die. I need some kind of closure here. Where's my fucking baby?" I screamed at her.

"Who knows where the brat is now, but it was never your fucking baby," she screamed back.

"How do you know?"

"You and I never actually had sex. I faked it every time. I was only interested in keeping you as a paid user."

"How did you fake having sex with me?"

"Easy. Combination of insisting we did it under the sheets, and my latex vagina." She held up a Fleshlight. "Totally self-centered and narcissistic assholes like you always fall for the ol' latex vagina trick. You don't notice as long as there's some kind of artificial hole in which to thrash about meaninglessly while you bore the rest of the world to death."

"Oh. OK, then. Catch you later, I guess."

"Later. *lol*. You're dying in five seconds, and I've got terminal cancer."

"Cancer of the what, Linds?"

"Oh, all over. You name it, Syrius, I've got the cancer of it. And what's worse is that there isn't a sensible soul in the world who gives a flying fuck."

She snapped her 1,900,582 pieces of gum simultaneously and walked off.

I continued to fall.




I have had a pretty deep connection to / obsession with LJ since I first joined in February, 2003. For me, the "golden years" of LJ were sometime between 2004 and 2006. On any given day in those years, I could have great conversations and waste countless hours hanging out with a hand-selected mix of old college buddies, e-acquaintances, and newer friends who just happened to have LJ accounts.

I made IRL pals through LJ, found apartments and restaurants and great deals through LJ, even pulled down more nookie through LJ than I should probably publicly admit. Those sure were the days, or something.

Meanwhile, I pumped out a ridiculous journal that was pretty creative and multimedia-heavy most days. This was a way of offsetting my quiet real-world demeanor with an online manifestation of my long-repressed and totally insatiable inner comment whore.

At the end of 2006, the activity level on LJ was clearly beginning to wane. Through 2007 and 2008, LJ attrition seemed to accelerate in epic, horrifying fashion. Myspace and Facebook-- sites for which I have never had any use; call me old school-- continued to ravage my old LJ friend base and suck up any possible pool of new LJ acquaintances with which to fill the now-empty space. People I knew who used to post daily went to weekly, biweekly, monthly; people who used to post weekly just fucking disappeared.

A few years ago, I'd bitch and moan loudly about the "death of LJ" if there were only five or six entries on my f-list over a given weekend. These days, I'm lucky if there are even five entries on my f-list for the fortnight.

Now, when "someone" approached me and suggested I should take on LJ Idol via srs_bidness, I thought it was a totally fucking stupid idea. However, when my ongoing tentativeness in Week Two earned me a deservedly pretty half-assed vote, I still got angry as hell. That week, there were dozens of entries that were less well-written and entertaining than mine, goddammit. You LJ Idol assholes were going to pay for your rejection.

One week and 1900 words later (and that was just Week Three), the Rev was born. Voting that week, and the next, began to pick way up; there were even comments on my entry. Apparently, my newfound conviction had been noticed, and it was seemingly a move in the right direction. This was exciting! It was like old LJ all over again!

Unfortunately, it wasn't like old LJ; it was actually something of a fluke, or perhaps just the natural result of a long-running contest with "political" underpinnings like LJ Idol. As the contest dragged on, I found that I had developed a consistent Idol fanbase (for which I was very grateful), but it became harder and harder to reach new readership. Minds had been closed to Syrius' hijinks; whether the problematic hijinks took place in Season Four or Five didn't matter much to me. And remember-- I'm a self-described insatiable comment whore.

I was particularly surprised when the very carefully planned Week Six rap battle entry didn't effectively win Best in Show for the week, and in fact turned in a worse performance in the polls than the entry prior. From that point forward, it just became less and less interesting for me each week, and eventually it reached the point where it didn't seem worth the time to properly finish what I'd started. Increasingly, although it had been fun "just like the old-LJ days" for that brief, addiction-generating interval, Idol just wasn't much fun to write for any more... sort of what's become of LJ itself.




As I continued to fall, my cell phone rang. I answered. It was the Rev.

"Hold up, Mr. Bidness. Stop metaphorically falling. Don't call it quits just yet."

I sighed in mid-freefall. "Why not?"

"superhappytime noticed a discrepancy in this week's voting at the very end, and he's right on. Someone pulled six votes from you at the last possible second in the polls. Then you lost the week."

"So?"

"Syrius, you idiot. This is obvious foul play, and I took screenshots all weekend long-- I've got the evidence right here. We can take this up with Gary and keep you in the game. Perhaps you can survive last week's ridiculous entry after all."

"Two things, Rev. One, I was already losing-- and solidly, too-- before those votes disappeared."

"Surely that doesn't matter if there's evidence of such vote-foolery going on, Syrius. I know a few things about fucking up elections, and this smells like a fucked-up election for certain."

"Well, see, the other thing, Rev, is that those retracted votes actually belonged to me."

"What?"

"Here's the deal, Rev: I set up a handful of sockpuppets for the occasion; they were holding some votes for me until the end of the poll. On the extremely off chance that Idol voters wouldn't kill me outright in response to that last entry, I wanted to be able to ensure my 'democratic' demise. As it turned out, of course, I didn't need the held votes, because hardly anybody actually voted for me anyway. Those LJ Idol readers, y'see, they're quite an astute bunch. Well, either that, or they're a bunch of fucking prudes."

A disbelieving pause followed. "I know you, Syrius, you don't even shill out from your f-list for legit votes. And now, you expect me to believe that you resorted to sockpuppets... in order to make sure you lost?"

"All true, Rev."

"You could have just dropped out, Syrius, for crissake."

"Sure, I could have. But that wouldn't have been so interesting, now, would it, Rev?"

"I suppose not."

"And, besides, I like thrashing about meaninglessly in artificial holes."

"Well, hell, Syrius, that's obvious to anyone. I mean, you're an LJ Idol entrant, ain't ye?"

"You're a frighteningly smart man, Rev. Well, listen, buddy, gotta go. Pavement's here."

"Se--"




splat









In Season Five, srs_bidness was:
approximately 432 words by soopageek
approximately 435 words by tpbrcombo
approximately 19,029 words (including these ones) by lossfound

(based quite loosely on an original Season Four character by soopageek)

all music and sorta-performances also by lossfound
(who has actually previously written horrible hip-hop songs about LJ sucking)

thanks to all non-haters for all your many kind comments and support this season

au revoir, cheers, best of luck, and watch out for ljhaikuidol!