In the Liminality, the stores shop for you…

I think I wandered into a weird pocket dimension earlier today.

I had to get specific things from Walmart for something my wife was planning on making. I never go to Walmart; I never actually even go to this town as I live equidistant between this town and one about 10x the size. But I happened to be coming from that direction today and was passing by anyway so can I please stop in for a few things? Thanks.

First off, I had this super weird vibe about people and their masks. 90% of masked people were elderly and the other 10% were employees. No one my age or younger were wearing masks. None. Everyone was also perfectly aware of what kind of statement that made. So, the tension between the generations was disturbing.

(Truth be told it’s probably been 9 months since I walked inside a grocery store. Curbside pickup is so much easier. Just build a distribution hub already. I’ll drive into a slot and get the car washed and my hair cut while groceries are loaded into the back.)



Uhh… I’m still in Walmart, right. So, I tried to do my best to fill my wife’s list, guys. I really did. Every section that was supposed to have what I needed looked like a demon ransacked it 5 minutes before and stripped it of everything I needed. The whole store was not like this; only my stuff. After the 4th unavailable item, well, I cheesed it…

…Straight across town to the Piggly Wiggly, which is clearly where the Liminality wanted me to end up. Because today at the Piggly Wiggly, the lights were half off, everyone was dead inside, and the place smelled like 1985. They had everything I needed, which meant I had to spend time getting to know the layout of ancient, mouldering display shelves that you can almost hear them groaning in rusty pain under the weight of too many products. The Products are crammed tightly, haphazardly, desperately, under off-brand signage that was made for fewer products.

This store is old. This store is angry. Built for a time when you could (should) smoke in the isles and people paid with food stamps that were literally stamps – this store had seen things. And this store had been neglected. Denied the luxury of renovation and modernization. It knows it’s glory has passed. It knows the town’s glory has passed. Patronized now only by die hard loyalists and desperate shoppers who are running late, this store is angry.

None of the people in the store had masks, except for me. I was the tear in the fabric of reality today. Because it was 1985 and you didn’t need masks. Everyone were already sick looking in the weird florescent, brown-tiled twilight. Something on the intercom was crackling and it took me a minute to recognize that management was being paged to the front for a mysterious numbered code.

Even the vegetable section was in shadow, y’all! You ever seen un-misted vegetables obfuscated under the cover of florescent dusk?!

Anyway. That’s my story. I’m going back down to the Piggly Wiggly now. It calls to me.

#Fnordmaze Scrying

We’ve all, at some point, found ourselves in some deep, strange rabbit hole of the internet seemingly by accident. “How the fuck did I end up here,” we ask (maybe even out-loud as we discover we’ve actually contracted some kind of memetic virus).

The answer to the question of rabbit holes is, of course: the Fnords. Fnords trigger primordial centers in the brain, such as the limbic system, to elicit a subconscious response: fight, flight, freeze. Fnords can be utilized by expert handlers to lead you into Their rabbit hole.

You must see by now that the internet has become a space that runs on a deep economy of Fnords. Ever wonder why people are so much meaner, or set in their ways online, risk taking? A lot of it is the Fnords that are peddled pushed, bought and sold on the open source market.

Fnordish Example

I’m here to assure you it’s not some grand scheme of a single overarching secret power walling us in with fnords from every direction…yet(?). Instead a chaotic multidimensional mazehas sprung up, formed through the memetic warfare between all the Egregores that play here: the nations, ideologies, companies, news networks, niche-fandoms, cults, tribes… and sinister plots at global domination/catastrophe. They’re all hungry for your attention. And they will not be ignored.

Another way to see it is that there are dozens of forces (aka outside interests) pushing and pulling at you every moment you are online. The gravitational pulls, binary bit-tides and Hollywood (inter)Star winds trigger all of us, all the time – even if it’s just that slight itch to click away from what you should be doing and go see what Cosmic is doing in the Liminality.

Sometimes these things get us good. That’s when we look up to discover we’ve been a complete ass monkey, spent entirely too much on niche collectibles, or ended up down… A Rabbit Hole.

Go on, go for the “hole” thing.

That’s the essence of the Fnordmaze. We’re here and we’re stuck (willfully). So what do we do?

Today I’m going to suggest you try some Fnordmaze Scrying to learn a few things. About a random rabbits hole, but more importantly about yourself. Because the Fnords only force a response: fight, flight, freeze, fuck. How you go about doing those things is all you. (Still, don’t go all watery thinking you’re a beautiful and unique snowflake).

How you fight. What you flee from (or to). When you freeze and who you’re with when it happens are your responses to own. It’s your Shadow down in your subconscious telling you what you should do about the Clown-Maidens! (…uh, nevermind.)

Fnordmaze Scrying is nothing more than an active, structured way to let your Shadow out into this realm and listen to what it has to tell you. It’s like combining lucid dreaming with Vipassana meditation. And it’s the first step on the path of the #fnordways, the system by which you can take your power back from the fnords.

How does it work? It’s relatively simple. You’re going to visit some corner of the internet you know gets a strong Fnordic reaction from you and your going to let go and see where you end up. On your journey along this Fnordic rabbit run your going to write down Fnords that stand out to you. Think of it like a dream journal for divining the Liminality.

What might this look like? Here’s an example. Say a person knows he/she/they/it/xe hates a certain news pundit who has the most popular show on cable. Everything thing that comes out of that subhuman trashbomb’s ethics-free disinforming mouth is an affront to all that could be right with the world if people like Duckbur Warsfun didn’t exist…

Anyway… Yeah so you hate them. You know this much about yourself. You think you know why, but do you know the opposite? Do you know why other people like them? Are you brave enough to find out?

This is where I pause and remember there are rules to have in place before the journey begins.

1. No money gets exchanged. No matter what Fnordmaze Scrying doesn’t touch an account. It doesn’t matter how juicy the article behind that paywall looks, this exercise is intended to be freeing.

2. Do not engage/leave no trace. Think of this as a journey into pristine yet dangerous wilderness. You don’t want to spoil it’s natural… ambiance, nor do you want to become prey for the savage wildlife that prowls this gods forsaken space. In Star Trek terms: Be a science officer, not a red shirt.

That’s it really for rules and for this purely hypothetical example. If you’ve understood everything up to this point you are ready… Except for that one thing I’m probably forgetting and the one key point in all this that you glazed over. You know the one…

Seriously though, give this a try. Remember the fnordish journal is your lifeline. It’s your string unwinding behind you as you lose yourself in the labyrinth. It’s your sensor array, tricorder and set of field samples all in one. Mine is actually a word document so I can copy/paste things that really get to me and eviscerate them later when I’m safely out of this unholy pit of selfish, egotistical, paranoid priveleged sheep with persecution complexes playacting as lone wolves (terribly I might add. How come lone wolves all say the exact same shit, almost like they have some kind of mind virus.)

When you’re done, decontaminate yourself through some healthy creative cathartic outlet, and put the experience out of your mind for a bit. There’s a time for gaining some distance so as to maintain your honor, humanity, and actually gain something from this otherwise heartbreaking experience.

There is always light at the end of these reality tunnels; you just have to be flexible enough to see it.

The Oracle reminds us that we “don’t believe in that fate crap anyway.” Have a cookie and remember that other people have Fnords too; that very few of us even know they exist; and that it is grossly unfair to expect other people not to be misled by Fnords when we still react forcefully despite knowing it’s part of even bigger games, and that we are being played for fools in equal and opposite measure…

So go out, find a trigger-trap to send you careening into some new lost Liminality. It doesn’t have to be an aggressive trigger like mine was. You can be fnorded just as hard by things you are interested in or attracted to.

However I will advance a warning about experimenting on the right hand side. It’s harder to extract yourself from something that makes you feel good than it is something you detest. Be mindful of the point of all this: we’re learning control again.

Next time in the Cosmic Liminality: how to interpret your swan song/dive into the toxic sludge of Fnord-Smog rabbit carcasses that is… #Fnordmaze Scrying.

#WhatIsTheGame23?