Thursday, August 31, 2006

Spam Poetry

Found this at the bottom of an email telling me how I could become my own employer and earn $30 per product shipped. Interesting word choice and rhythm.

bloody-hearted rubber latex Paleo-amerind
pulse-jet engine step turn poplar-covered
field ash nail-headed red-fleshed
guard ship hill station hand-filled
chicken gumbo quasi-grave carriage bow
gold-studded up-bow sign storm-boding
fairy godmother ivory cutter printing-in
vine fretter north-countriness saddle cutter

It speaks for itself, doesn't it?

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

PI School Part V: The Dropout

Okay, I don't know what I was thinking with that last post. Time to get back to some familiar territory.

Today's focus is on what it feels like to be a PI-school dropout. For background on this intensely personal (i.e plastered all over the Internet) subject, please refresh yourself by looking back at the previous entries in my PI School series:

Finished? Great. Thanks for sticking it through.

Now that you're back I can explain the full truth.


Yes, it's true. Night after night of rocking up to the class, heavy books in hand, bicycle chained to a bench out the front of the campus building, I eventually broke down.

Not exactly a nervous breakdown, more a realisation of 'what's the point?' I mean, I only ever enrolled to get some background info on what it was like to be a private investigator. And since my character is a PI-in-training, you could call it a little method acting on my part. But hey, this is fiction, not film, and I don't have to spend weeks studying Johnny Depp's mannerisms in Fear & Loathing to come up with some background. But that's not the only reason I dropped out.

It was the silence that got to me.

Maybe the nature of the PI is such that the people attracted to the profession are those of the private kind. Reserved, quiet, aloof. Observers rather than active participants in life. Sure, one of them had tattoos on his arm that he'd designed himself, and a couple of the youngest were a little more than entertaining during the class, but ultimately, a private bunch.

I found myself feeling very alone. Add to this the tedious drawing of traffic diagrams, the need to remember by rote the various government Acts, and one night after work I just decided not to go. Thought I'd make it the next week, after all, I wasn't missing out on much.

Next week came around and my schedule told me there was a two week break. Great. I could collect my thoughts, look through the PI textbooks, and recharge my batteries. Two weeks passed.

And I never went back.

My name is Daniel Hatadi and I am a PI-school dropout.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Marketing Versus Art

Marketing: A Case Of Diminishing Returns And Cycles

"Hey, these Mars Bars sure are tasty. I'd like four hundred please."

Thirty later ...

"I don't want to see another Mars Bar for as long as I live."

A decade later ...

"Mars Bars are back!"

Art: An Endless Search For Perfection

"Can I have a bite of that Mars Bar?"

A pause.

"Not bad, but I've already moved on. It doesn't mean anything to me anymore."

Another pause.

"What's that in your other hand? A Snickers? Can I have a bite?"

Monday, August 28, 2006

Do You Believe?

Thanks to the wonders of free cable television, I accidentally watched an episode of Star Trek: Voyager last night.

For those less geeky types that may not know, the premise of Voyager centres around a spaceship that is catapulted to the other end of the galaxy. The main point of each episode is trying to get the crew home. Remember this, it's important.

The episode I watched last night was about a civil war within the Q Continuum, a race of omnipotent, interdimensional beings. For whatever reason, one of them, known only as Q, decides that the only way to stop the war is to plant his omnipotent seed in the vessel that is Captain Janeway.

Who wouldn't? Look at that smile, that stance, that hair.

The scene was played out in fantastical fashion, with Janeway viewing the activities through the device of an American civil war era translation, due to her (and our) limited intellect as bipedal beings. This, I could handle. After all, it is science fiction and we are talking about interdimensional beings who all have the same name. But then I lost my belief in the story entirely. Q propositions Janeway again, this time with the promise of returning her crew to Earth.

Returning her crew to earth. The goal of the whole series.

All Janeway has to do is give birth to the child of an omnipotent being and her crew will be returned to their homes. One hundred people rejoined with their families before they all grow old and die. I think it's a pretty worthy sacrifice. But no, Janeway has moral issues. She says they'll do it through hard work instead of a quick fix. I wonder what the crew would have said if they found out? I'm thinking mutiny would be well on the cards.

This is where the story mechanics show their gears. Obviously if Janeway takes Q up on the offer, the series is over. It's no longer Voyager. It's Star Trek: Stay At Home. Isn't quite as catchy.

The rest of the episode was a joke. Another member of the Q Continuum, this time a hot redhead, is stranded onboard Voyager and somehow stripped of her powers. Yet she is still smart enough to help the crew bend the laws of astrophysics to enter the Continuum itself, decked out in full Civil War regalia. A gunfight ensues, and Janeway and Q are rescued from the firing squad.

Janeway then passes on more of her superior morals by convincing Q to get with the hot redhead and give birth to a baby Q. They copulate right in front of Janeway, ET style, by touching glowing fingers.

I turned the TV off before the credits rolled.

Anyone else had an experience with a book or movie where the suspension of disbelief was broken?

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Variation On A Desk

Snagged this little doohickey meme from Christa M. Miller, but I decided to do my own version of it. A simpler version.

Instructions: show three of the most interesting items on your desk.

Even this presented a problem for me. See, I use a laptop at home nowadays, and since our dining table decided to take over the living room, the upstairs bedroom that was my work area is now used for other, more evil activities.

Which leaves me without a desk.

Luckily, I have a day job, which includes a desk. If I told you the details of what was on it, I could very easily have private investigators follow me around for weeks as part of an elongated background check.

Enough with the chit-chat. On to the ITEMS (spoken in booming voice).


Yes, I am a geek. But, like, black's a really cool colour, okay?

Now, your turn.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006


Anne Frasier started up an interesting discussion on the brokenness of writers and whether death has had anything to do with it.

This is roughly the comment I left on her blog:

If I have any fascination with death, it's because of the taboo surrounding it.

When someone dies we are supposed to be extremely careful about everything we say, even if it happened on the other side of the globe and we have absolutely no connection with the events. We're not supposed to talk about death, for fear that even the mention of it may bring bad luck. In some cultures, widows wear black for the rest of their lives and never remarry.

All of this gets the rebel in me fired up.

Death is part of life. It seems absolutely absurd to ignore it or brush the subject under the carpet.

I want to be able to joke about death. I want to imagine what life would be like if my loved ones die, or what it would be like for them if I die.

Death comes to us all, so I believe I have the right to explore the subject in any way I see fit, so I can come to terms with death in my own way.

When I die, I don't want to take up land that could be used for something better. Compact me into a brick and use it as a foundation stone for a building. Don't dare cremate me and pollute the atmosphere. Dispose of my body in an enviromentally friendly way, because I don't really care what happens to it. I'm no longer there.

When I die, I want people to dance to John Lee Hooker singing Boom, Boom, as loud as the sound system can go.

My death is mine, let me deal with it as I please.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Hatadi Shot In The Mag


It's certainly the month of Hatadi and I'm grateful to be the one sharing this with all of you, mostly because I get to refer to myself in the third person.

I'll cut to the chase: Shots Magazine UK, a fine crime establishment, has joined the ranks of Crimespree and allowed my name to grace its pages.

Head on over to the Short Story section and read my contribution, DOLLARS & SENSE, as well as fine new crime by Steven Torres and others.

On top of all this mayhem, if all goes well, it won't be long until my PI-in-training, Danny Hawaii, makes his fictional debut, somewhere, sometime, soon.

Where and when for this thing? You'll just have to keep checking back here until it happens.

Diabolical of me, isn't it?

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Hatadi On A Crimespree


The current issue of Crimespree Magazine has allowed me to grace its hallowed pages with an article called IS THE P.I. DEAD? More a plea than a piece of well-researched non fiction, it was inspired by my obsession with the fictional world of the private investigator.

Spinetingler's own Sandra Ruttan also makes her Crimespree debut in the very same issue. If she weren't Canadian, female, with fine red curly locks of hair and a completely different name we would be ... exactly the same. The mind boggles.

If you haven't subscribed to Crimespree and you're a fan of crime fiction, you're missing out.

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