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Author Topic: Pseudopod 73: Blood, Gridlock and PEZ  (Read 18111 times)

Bdoomed

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on: January 18, 2008, 06:11:27 PM
Pseudopod 73: Blood, Gridlock and PEZ

By Kevin Anderson

Read by KJ Johnson

Blood gathered in pools around the body as the afternoon sun gave it a sickly glimmer. I remember thinking how much the dark liquid really seemed to belong on the pavement. Like oil, transmission fluid or lizard-green coolant, the blood was at home on the asphalt.

It’s amazing the things you notice when events force you to grown up in the span of a moment. But I’m getting ahead of myself. This story really starts two hours earlier, with Gina.



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« Last Edit: January 18, 2008, 11:19:52 PM by Bdoomed »

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bolddeceiver

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Reply #1 on: January 18, 2008, 07:31:06 PM
I don't usually get too much out of this kind of suspense story, but this one really got me going.  Well written, good attention to detail and description, great attention to the human aspect, and wonderfully dark humor --quite possibly my favorite Pseudo yet.



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Reply #2 on: January 18, 2008, 07:55:37 PM
I thought this was pretty fun.  The only thing I wasn't so into was the last couple of lines, but otherwise a pretty entertaining story that kept me going.  I felt bad for the poor shmuck (the PEZ narrator, not the axe-wielding maniac). 


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Reply #3 on: January 19, 2008, 01:29:38 PM
I really liked this one. I think it'd make a great short film. It gets you from Point A to Point B in the story in what's really just one long scene.

I don't interpret the end as "the horror continues!" shock ending, I think it fits in with the whole of the story as sort of a zen take on horror. Especially when you remember that the statement in question really is good advice (or at least that's what every movie/tv mention of stocks would have me believe).

In retrospect, it's almost like a horror movie coming of age story.




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Reply #4 on: January 19, 2008, 07:20:03 PM
I liked the ending. I agree with coyote247 that it didn't mean that the narrator shared the lunatic's madness. Rather, I took it do add a bit of depth; the narrator was affected by this encounter in many ways, one of them being that he actually listened to what the madman was saying; the financial advice had a meaning for him that man who spoke it had lost.



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Reply #5 on: January 20, 2008, 05:58:44 AM
I liked it. The only thing that felt kinda borderline was the slasher's lines. While funny as hell, some of them got too silly to the point of parody.

As for the ending, while it is sound advice, I think the final "cha-ching" was what got people to think it was one of those "lunacy continues" endings. Not to mention him calling my hobbies crap pissed me off.

Still, it was a pretty good story. I'm pretty sure this is the first PP that had a human figure of horror in this, and it's perhaps somewhat scarier--that bump you hear in the middle of the night could just be a figment of your imagination, but the prospect of someone right behind you just snapping and killing people has been known to happen, and is a lot more plausible then the boogyman.



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Reply #6 on: January 20, 2008, 01:16:34 PM
Excellent story! Because the horror didn't have a supernatural origin, it felt very real; this could happen to you. Normally I don't go for that kind of suspense, ' cause it tends to be a bit slow in getting to the point. But this story had great pacing.

I also liked that the girl didn't end up with the protaganist, ' just'  because he saved her. Very un-Hollywood. The madman's lines were a bit over the top sometimes, but the part where stops in his tracks and wishes the hero a happy birthday was very funny. Especially because you find out at the end that it was his birthday as well...kinda tragic, too.

Also, what a good reading! In my opinion, one of the best so far.



deflective

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Reply #7 on: January 21, 2008, 12:51:43 AM
i liked the natural horror aspect unfortunately it lost that real feeling during the axe fight.
putting an axe through a windshield with enough force to kill, striking sparks off a bumper, bursting a tire. this is tv reality.

minor quibbles sure, but when the strength is realism they become important.



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Reply #8 on: January 21, 2008, 05:12:04 PM
I liked the ending. I agree with coyote247 that it didn't mean that the narrator shared the lunatic's madness. Rather, I took it do add a bit of depth; the narrator was affected by this encounter in many ways, one of them being that he actually listened to what the madman was saying; the financial advice had a meaning for him that man who spoke it had lost.

That's cool.  I didn't take it that the narrator became a madman lunatic either who'd soon go on a killing spree.  I just didn't get the sense of depth it added for you.  It just didn't add anything for me.  But still, overall I enjoyed the story.


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Reply #9 on: January 21, 2008, 07:59:10 PM
I enjoyed this one. For me, the action-filmy violence made the story seem light-hearted, though still pretty intense. It reminded me a little of the Stephen King story ‘Lunch at the Gotham Café.’ I also enjoyed the way the character didn’t get the girl, it made the story more real. And I thought the ending was nicely ambiguous. The readers voice fitted well with the story too I thought. Well done misters Anderson and Johnson!



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Reply #10 on: January 21, 2008, 08:13:46 PM
I enjoyed this one. For me, the action-filmy violence made the story seem light-hearted, though still pretty intense. It reminded me a little of the Stephen King story ‘Lunch at the Gotham Café.’ I also enjoyed the way the character didn’t get the girl, it made the story more real. And I thought the ending was nicely ambiguous. The readers voice fitted well with the story too I thought. Well done misters Anderson and Johnson!
I noticed the similarity too, but I don't think they are *too* similiar.  I enjoyed this story quite a lot.  Good narrative and characterization. 



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Reply #11 on: January 22, 2008, 07:05:41 PM
i liked the natural horror aspect unfortunately it lost that real feeling during the axe fight.
putting an axe through a windshield with enough force to kill, striking sparks off a bumper, bursting a tire. this is tv reality.

One thing to consider -- the story is told in the retrospective; it's entirely possible to consider the narrator's memory to be not entirely reliable.  I know from experience that the memory is a fickle thing, espescially when it comes to trauma, and a story you tell yourself enough times can start to grow.



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Reply #12 on: January 25, 2008, 12:48:10 AM
i liked the natural horror aspect unfortunately it lost that real feeling during the axe fight.
putting an axe through a windshield with enough force to kill, striking sparks off a bumper, bursting a tire. this is tv reality.
One thing to consider -- the story is told in the retrospective; it's entirely possible to consider the narrator's memory to be not entirely reliable.  I know from experience that the memory is a fickle thing, espescially when it comes to trauma, and a story you tell yourself enough times can start to grow.

This is dealt with in text.  The narrator tells us when he's paraphrasing and when he's being exact.  We are given numerous cues that indicate we are meant to take his retelling as accurate and the narrator himself as reliable.  We are also given cues re:Hollywoodization of axe-wielding from the moment El Camino busts the windshield with his head and somehow remains ambulatory.  Once the flavor was established, and I believe it was done early on and successfully, the rest of the scene plays out right in tone.  I didn't have a problem with it myself, though I'll easily grant it was fantastical.

I'm happy to say this brings an end to the Pseudopods that make me want to cry (and not in a good way).  I suppose there's hope for this podcast still, and I'll set down and back away from the rant I was considering posting about the Golden Age of PP. 

I liked the ending lines, because it put a neat bow on the thematic treatment of growing up and closed the circle of the first line (I love stories that close the circle!).  I'll also ditto the praise on the attention to physical detail, the characterization and the execution.  Nice.

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Reply #13 on: January 29, 2008, 07:13:41 PM
If the narrator doesn't go crazy then when is he sitting next to the big pool of blood mentioned at the start? Is that supposed to be the crazy axe guy?

The best thing about that story was that I listened to it in the past and don't have to listen to it again. The most positive adjective I can think of is 'workmanlike' or perhaps 'sturdy'. Anyone who was in to Britpop in the 90s will remember 'Dadrock', uncomplicated 'does what it says on the tin' rock that had no attempts at tricky things like flair. This story was much the same, a solid story of axe maniacs that at no point tried to introduce anything remotely new or interesting in to the mix.



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Reply #14 on: January 30, 2008, 07:17:46 AM
Great story!  Whether they swing mallets or axes, Anderson's characters always hit you hard with something.
I wouldn't ever "rant" against a free podcast, I would just become less interested.  I think PP does a fine job though.
However, I DO think Alasdair should get a new mic setup.  (I'm a nitpicky sound guy)



wakela

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Reply #15 on: January 31, 2008, 11:46:28 PM
The best horror story set on a crowded highway in the middle of the day I have ever heard. ;D
Actually, that was a very interesting setting, wasn't it.

Another story made better by the forums.  For some reason I didn't pick up on the toys to diversified portfolios, coming of age aspect of the story.  But after reading your comments I think it's very clear the author had that in mind.

I thought the story could have handled a little trimming
"I recognized those shoes.  It was Gina.  She had somehow gotten the seatbelt off and come to rescue me." 
The third sentence is unnecessary.  Also, I personally thought the jokes, while clever and funny, got in the way of the action.

Overall, very fun story.

Here's something I realized.  In fiction we have been trained to give extra weight to the words of maniacs, even though in reality maniacal rants rarely have any meaning.    Didn't we expect that El Camino went nuts over financial problems?  Maybe we were going to get some social commentary on the evils of capitalism or the "sub-prime" crisis.  The author knew this and had to acknowledge it at the end, even though he didn't resolve it.   But if I saw this guy in reality I would assume he was just riffing on something he heard on CNN.  The irony of wisdom coming from the mouth of a lunatic has been done so many times it's no longer ironic; it's standard.

Although, I did enjoy the irony of El Camino, not imparting any sort of deep, mystical philosophy gleaned from his unique perspective, but giving basic, simple, financial advice.  This story's simplicity, that it doesn't try to bite off more than it can chew, is what makes it charming. 



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Reply #16 on: February 04, 2008, 10:45:22 PM
Absolutely one of the best horror stories I have ever heard. Absolutely brilliant! El Camino's madness set against the realistic setting and characterisations heightened the drama. The protagonist has a most unusual back story - really bad birthdays - but this isn't a precursor to himself or his friends turning out to be larger than life. Their courage fails and just enough dumb luck saves him in the end - not extraordinary luck, just every day luck.

Like wakela, I didn't get the coming of age part until I read the forums. This adds another dimension to the ending.

Perhaps it is fitting with the rest of the story, but the only part I didn't feel satisfied with was his personal resolution with Pitt and Gina. I was thinking how annoyed and pissed off he should be with them both and that he should have said something scathing to them.. but nothing of the sort happened.

I liked that Pitt went off in search of courage.. I wonder what Gina was doing?

One final thought. I think this could be a very interesting series - what happens on his other birthdays?? :)


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Reply #17 on: February 04, 2008, 11:34:01 PM
I liked that Pitt went off in search of courage.. I wonder what Gina was doing?

Went off in search of either a heart or a brain, obviously.



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Reply #18 on: February 05, 2008, 12:59:35 PM
i liked the natural horror aspect unfortunately it lost that real feeling during the axe fight.
putting an axe through a windshield with enough force to kill, striking sparks off a bumper, bursting a tire. this is tv reality.

My comments on the story have been handled, so I'll weigh in on this comment about the axe.

The determination of whether these images are realistic or not depends on the axe.  If the guy is using some tiny little thing barely bigger than a hatchet, then you're right.  With the exception of the sparks, it's BS. 

However if El Camino has a five pounder or bigger, it's all very realistic.  An axe of that size would go right through a windshield.  Whether or not it could hit the passenger is more a question of distance versus length of axe and arm. 

Sparks off a steel bumper, especially a non-chrome steel bumper, is very realistic and I've done it just by dropping a hammer on one.

The tire is a different story.  a blade going straight into the tire would probably bounce back.  But if the axe came in an angle so the only the corner of the blade hit, I think it would go in, especially from a heavy axe.



wakela

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Reply #19 on: February 06, 2008, 02:21:51 AM
i liked the natural horror aspect unfortunately it lost that real feeling during the axe fight.
putting an axe through a windshield with enough force to kill, striking sparks off a bumper, bursting a tire. this is tv reality.

My comments on the story have been handled, so I'll weigh in on this comment about the axe.

The determination of whether these images are realistic or not depends on the axe.  If the guy is using some tiny little thing barely bigger than a hatchet, then you're right.  With the exception of the sparks, it's BS. 

However if El Camino has a five pounder or bigger, it's all very realistic.  An axe of that size would go right through a windshield.  Whether or not it could hit the passenger is more a question of distance versus length of axe and arm. 

Sparks off a steel bumper, especially a non-chrome steel bumper, is very realistic and I've done it just by dropping a hammer on one.

The tire is a different story.  a blade going straight into the tire would probably bounce back.  But if the axe came in an angle so the only the corner of the blade hit, I think it would go in, especially from a heavy axe.
You know a suspicious amount about heavy axes.  I hope your 401K is going well...



deflective

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Reply #20 on: February 06, 2008, 07:18:49 AM
there is simply no way to effectively put an axe through a modern windshield to kill with a single blow (yes, that was a sledge hitting with the flat of the head. hitting full on at that angle, with that weight, thin blade, best case scenario, he might have hurt someone). the glass's plastic coating stays together after a hole is punched, stopping the handle.

i have some experience with axes, particularly big ones. nothing like a maul to get through knotted fir when cutting firewood. the only danger when hitting a car tire with an axe is the possibility of it bouncing into your face. there might be a chance of puncturing the tube if you hit the rim with enough force to cut the metal and bend it inward. maybe. it would result in something that could be patched.

if you've seen sparks then they're possible. i've never seen them so i discounted them out of hand.

this thread's beginning to look like an episode of mythbusters. =)




Russell Nash

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Reply #21 on: February 06, 2008, 09:53:21 AM
i liked the natural horror aspect unfortunately it lost that real feeling during the axe fight.
putting an axe through a windshield with enough force to kill, striking sparks off a bumper, bursting a tire. this is tv reality.

My comments on the story have been handled, so I'll weigh in on this comment about the axe.

The determination of whether these images are realistic or not depends on the axe.  If the guy is using some tiny little thing barely bigger than a hatchet, then you're right.  With the exception of the sparks, it's BS. 

However if El Camino has a five pounder or bigger, it's all very realistic.  An axe of that size would go right through a windshield.  Whether or not it could hit the passenger is more a question of distance versus length of axe and arm. 

Sparks off a steel bumper, especially a non-chrome steel bumper, is very realistic and I've done it just by dropping a hammer on one.

The tire is a different story.  a blade going straight into the tire would probably bounce back.  But if the axe came in an angle so the only the corner of the blade hit, I think it would go in, especially from a heavy axe.
You know a suspicious amount about heavy axes.  I hope your 401K is going well...

I like sharp things.  This was handled in the Fetish thread that was lost during the great server move of '07.



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Reply #22 on: February 12, 2008, 04:14:39 PM
I enjoyed this one. I don't really have more to add than others at the moment. Maybe I used to but I've forgotten the post I was writing in my head as I was listening.

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Reply #23 on: March 23, 2009, 03:53:08 PM
My only complaint is when a reader doesn't properly pronounce the name of an actual city, or the author doesn't get the timing correct.  Picky stuff, I realize, but "del-A-no", not "DEL-ah-no" is 2.5 hours from Los Angeles, not four (even if the traffic is bad on the Grapevine).  I do find it funny that the ax maniac was employed at FYI (Fresno Yosemite International Airport)...and he must've used CitiBank's night drop boxes.  That would explain the rash of robberies that occurred during that time period.  He was upset with their lack of security, and was afraid for his funds.   :P



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Reply #24 on: October 12, 2009, 06:38:34 PM
I liked a lot of things about this story.  The thing I thought was done best was the setting.  Now I will be paying rapt attention to everything around me the next time I get stuck in traffic!  And the interaction between the characters was great.  I was so pissed off at Gina when she cut and ran after he saved her life.  I like that the protag didn't get the girl.  I like the fact that he and Gina met at a PEZ convention, no formulaic backstory on this one!

The things that I didn't like:  The killer's ramblings just got annoying. 
And I didn't like the final lines.  To me it seemed like it was a "continued lunacy" thing.  After reading everyone else's comments, it's probably a coming of age thing, but if that's the case, that falls flat as well.




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Reply #25 on: July 29, 2010, 11:06:57 PM
I f**king loved this one.  Fantastic.  Had me glued to the headphones the entire time.  From the telegraphed ending (so excellently used to keep the first act suspenseful) to the absolutely fabulous conclusion, I loved every moment of it.  Absolutely perfect - and an excellent choice for audio format.

I really liked the inclusion of the weird little love triangle - it added a layer of depth.  I loved the way his friends ditched him - unlike most stories, where everyone is a hero.  I loved the way Pit tried to make up for his cowardice for the rest of his life.

I was a little mixed about the ending (until we got the "diversification" line at the very end) as I thought having the maniac get shot at the last moment was a bit of a cop out (pun intended haha).  But the denoument was handled so well that I totally forgave it.

And I loved the humor.  Great all around.  This one will probably be a top 10.

And I loved the setting.  Only in California.  In reading the comments, I'm actually surprised no one mentioned this: the story would not have been believable had it taken place in flyover country.  Our maniac would have been immediately shot full of holes when every, single person on the freeway pulled the revolver out of their glove compartment (or, in Texas, the shotgun off of their pickup's gunrack).  That's not a meant to be a commentary on gun laws - only mentioning that sort of thing has totally happened before.
« Last Edit: July 29, 2010, 11:14:24 PM by Millenium_King »

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Reply #26 on: August 03, 2010, 01:44:30 PM
In reading the comments, I'm actually surprised no one mentioned this: the story would not have been believable had it taken place in flyover country. 

I've never heard the term "flyover country"--that's an interesting one.  But not everyone in the center of the US is gun-toting.  Though hunting is common, and some people do carry their hunting guns in their car, far from everyone would.  And this may surprise people, but there are actually cities in the Midwest--it's not all gun-toting farmers.



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Reply #27 on: August 03, 2010, 06:05:32 PM
It's a term that covers everything that is between New York and California. This includes the south, even though that portion is less "flown over" as the midwest. It's a beautiful insult that is very illuminating about those who use it.

From my time in the midwest, I'd call the gun analogy appropriate. But not quite as appropriate as in the south. I can't wait until the range opens up down the street.

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Reply #28 on: August 03, 2010, 09:44:44 PM
In reading the comments, I'm actually surprised no one mentioned this: the story would not have been believable had it taken place in flyover country. 
I've never heard the term "flyover country"--that's an interesting one.  But not everyone in the center of the US is gun-toting.  Though hunting is common, and some people do carry their hunting guns in their car, far from everyone would.  And this may surprise people, but there are actually cities in the Midwest--it's not all gun-toting farmers.

Fenrix explained the term well.  I use it (as others do) to remind people that there's this big place between New York and Los Angeles called "America" - haha.  I was not, as Fenrix possibly insinuated, using it as an insult.

I was also not implying in any way shape or form that everyone in the midwest is a hick farmer straight out of a Jeff Foxworthy joke, I was only implying that in a crowd of that many people on the freeway, in many states other than CA, there would be at least one person with a gun willing to help.  Again: not everyone, but there would be a couple most likely.  For example: in 1997 in Mississippi a Columbine-styel massacre was stopped by Joel Myrick and his .45, while in the same year in Edinboro, Pennsylvania (not flyovercountry, I know, but not CA either) James Strand convinced a teenage killer to surrender by brandishing his shotgun.

I'm not here to make a gun-control case one way or the other, only pointing out that versimillitude wise, CA was a good choice.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2010, 09:46:44 PM by Millenium_King »

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Reply #29 on: August 04, 2010, 01:29:21 PM
In reading the comments, I'm actually surprised no one mentioned this: the story would not have been believable had it taken place in flyover country. 
I've never heard the term "flyover country"--that's an interesting one.  But not everyone in the center of the US is gun-toting.  Though hunting is common, and some people do carry their hunting guns in their car, far from everyone would.  And this may surprise people, but there are actually cities in the Midwest--it's not all gun-toting farmers.

Fenrix explained the term well.  I use it (as others do) to remind people that there's this big place between New York and Los Angeles called "America" - haha.  I was not, as Fenrix possibly insinuated, using it as an insult.

I was also not implying in any way shape or form that everyone in the midwest is a hick farmer straight out of a Jeff Foxworthy joke, I was only implying that in a crowd of that many people on the freeway, in many states other than CA, there would be at least one person with a gun willing to help.  Again: not everyone, but there would be a couple most likely.  For example: in 1997 in Mississippi a Columbine-styel massacre was stopped by Joel Myrick and his .45, while in the same year in Edinboro, Pennsylvania (not flyovercountry, I know, but not CA either) James Strand convinced a teenage killer to surrender by brandishing his shotgun.

I'm not here to make a gun-control case one way or the other, only pointing out that versimillitude wise, CA was a good choice.

I didn't find "flyover country" confusing or insulting.  It's pretty apt, unless you live here like I do.  In which case I don't so much fly over it, as out of it and then back into it.  :) 

I didn't find the gun comments about the Midwest insulting either, just not very accurate.  If you were in the country you wouldn't have gridlock.  And generally a city freeway in gridlock is going to have mostly people who live in the city commuting, who are not generally carrying guns.  Your average city dweller or suburbanite is not too likely to have a gun in their car.  People who live in the country are more likely to, but they're not as likely to be stuck in gridlock.



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Reply #30 on: August 04, 2010, 04:41:05 PM
If you were in the country you wouldn't have gridlock.

Good point haha.

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Reply #31 on: August 04, 2010, 08:49:36 PM
I think, gun issue aside, the response to a situation like this would be different in a rural area.  People who live farther away from metro areas generally need to be more selfreliant physically.  Urban survival depends more upon avoiding conflict.

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Reply #32 on: August 05, 2010, 10:30:32 PM
I'll defend the concept that the term "flyover country" is insulting. It carries an implicit dismissal of everything between the two major media markets. One can wear the term as an ironic badge. Alternately, one can accept that being dismissed by New York and SoCal is just fine, because we don't care much about them either.

I prefer "middle America" as opposed to "flyover country" for a more positive spin. It carries the same geographic implications. It also covers being part of the U.S. without being dismissive. Y'all are writers, you know that carefully chosen words carry power.  ;)

Now to get back on topic, traffic is pretty terrible in most of California that I've visited. But in less densely developed areas, it only takes a jackknifed tractor trailer to achieve the gridlock in the story. Or decent construction. It's amazing the queues you can achieve when you take three lanes to one, even off-peak or on a weekend. Zorag makes an effective point that I generally agree with, but I don't think we can eliminate all the regional anomalies. I may have to agree with MK in that if this gridlock had happened in Atlanta, someone would have turned the crazy guy's head into a canoe.


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Reply #33 on: August 07, 2010, 04:52:09 PM
Fenrix is correct about traffic in less developed areas.  I drive around 150,000 miles per year, across most of the US.  I have seen 20 mile back ups in the middle of nowhere.  In New Mexico, there often are no frontage roads along the interstate.  Should something temporarily close the road, there is no practical way around it.  The term gridlock does, however, make me think more of urban highways.

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Reply #34 on: August 09, 2010, 01:55:21 PM
The term gridlock does, however, make me think more of urban highways.

I'd say it's exclusive to urban highways, because a single interstate in the country is not a "grid".  "gridlock" is the point of traffic in a city when the entire grid of major roads is essentially immobile.



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Reply #35 on: August 09, 2010, 05:35:17 PM
I'll defend the concept that the term "flyover country" is insulting. It carries an implicit dismissal of everything between the two major media markets. One can wear the term as an ironic badge. Alternately, one can accept that being dismissed by New York and SoCal is just fine, because we don't care much about them either.

I prefer "middle America" as opposed to "flyover country" for a more positive spin. It carries the same geographic implications. It also covers being part of the U.S. without being dismissive. Y'all are writers, you know that carefully chosen words carry power.  ;)


"Middle America" can be magical. See: "American Gods".

"Flyover Country" isn't.

Having worked in media for more than ten years, I understand why it's called flyover country... but it was flyover country (and Florida) that won a couple of elections for George W. Bush, defeating the pundits and powerplayers in NYC and LA and some of the other heavily-populated states. I think the media shot themselves in the foot if they were trying to say "middle Americans are stupid, let them vote for this guy who we don't like", because they did.

Note: I am not a democrat or a republican. I am not passing judgment on Bush 43, Gore, or Kerry. Just on the media.

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Reply #36 on: August 09, 2010, 05:57:05 PM
I'll defend the concept that the term "flyover country" is insulting. It carries an implicit dismissal of everything between the two major media markets. One can wear the term as an ironic badge. Alternately, one can accept that being dismissed by New York and SoCal is just fine, because we don't care much about them either.

I prefer "middle America" as opposed to "flyover country" for a more positive spin. It carries the same geographic implications. It also covers being part of the U.S. without being dismissive. Y'all are writers, you know that carefully chosen words carry power.  ;)


"Middle America" can be magical. See: "American Gods".

"Flyover Country" isn't.

Having worked in media for more than ten years, I understand why it's called flyover country... but it was flyover country (and Florida) that won a couple of elections for George W. Bush, defeating the pundits and powerplayers in NYC and LA and some of the other heavily-populated states. I think the media shot themselves in the foot if they were trying to say "middle Americans are stupid, let them vote for this guy who we don't like", because they did.

Note: I am not a democrat or a republican. I am not passing judgment on Bush 43, Gore, or Kerry. Just on the media.

I think a discussion on why the media is filled with a bunch of biased idiots (present company excluded) is far too long for this thread.

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Reply #37 on: August 09, 2010, 06:57:18 PM

I think a discussion on why the media is filled with a bunch of biased idiots (present company excluded) is far too long for this thread.

I'm a biased idiot. :) I take pride in it.

But if you start that discussion, I'm going to abstain from it because I've had it too often in the past, usually when I was blogging, back in the day. I've given up on getting angry about it; now I don't watch TV news. Which is weird because I work at CNN Center.

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Reply #38 on: August 09, 2010, 07:08:55 PM
But if you start that discussion...

God, no.

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Reply #39 on: August 09, 2010, 07:47:51 PM
But if you start that discussion...

God, no.

You don't have to step in that to know it'll be hard to scrape off your shoe...

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Reply #40 on: August 11, 2010, 11:33:11 PM
Gridlock is possible in rural areas.  We had a series of accidents on I-70 near Highland, IL on Monday.  It was not pretty.

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Reply #41 on: August 12, 2010, 01:23:59 PM
Gridlock is possible in rural areas.  We had a series of accidents on I-70 near Highland, IL on Monday.  It was not pretty.

I'm not saying that you can't have traffic snarls caused by accidents, but it's not "gridlock" unless you have a "grid" of roads affected by it.  If you have a single interstate affected by an accident, that's a line of traffic, I suppose you could call it a "linelock" but "gridlock" doesn't really make sense.



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Reply #42 on: August 12, 2010, 03:00:05 PM
All the alternate routes were backed up, too.  Your point is taken.

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Reply #43 on: August 24, 2010, 02:29:49 AM
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/38812252/ns/world_news-asiapacific/

MSNBC calls a linear traffic jam Gridlock. Just thought I'd share.  ;)

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Reply #44 on: December 06, 2019, 07:11:41 PM
I suspected that the story would end with the protagonist killing his girlfriend with the ax and blaming it on the psycho. I like the fact that the author took things in an unexpected direction.

El Camino reminds me of the "I am not economically viable!" guy from Falling Down. A movie that, coincidentally, begins with a traffic jam.

I think the ending of the story was excellent, except for the very last line. The last line makes the story feel like the secret origin story of Martin Shkreli or something. I wish he had popped some PEZ at the end so we know he didn't grow up to be Ebenezer Scrooge.