Forbidden Dragon: The BlogGall of Marlo Dianne

"Bagels and Blood", short story, in Big Pulp (February 2010)

'Clockwork Dragon' by Marlo Dianne

"Clockwork Dragon", cover art, in Tales of Moreauvia (December 2009)

"Damp", flash, in Outshine (November 2009)

"Trenchcoats or Atomic Insects?", flash, in Outshine (October 2009)

"The Wedding Feast", short story, in Big Pulp (September 2009)

"Cooville", flash, in Sonar 4 (September 2009)

"Chiaroscuro", short story, in Cinema Spec(May 2009)

"Thou Shall Not, flash, in Everyday Weirdness (April 2009)

"Board Now", flash, in Dog Oil Press (March 2009)

"Whale Bone", flash, in Necrography (March 2009)

"Beneath the Crook", poem, in Goblin Fruit (October 2008)

'Fate Machine

"Fate Machine", story illustration, for 'A Test of Fate', in Strange, Weird, and Wonderful (October 2008)

'Hands Free

"Hands Free", story illustration, for 'It's Just a Child's Toy', in Strange, Weird, and Wonderful (October 2008)

'A Delicacy' by Marlo Dianne

"A Delicacy", story illustration, for 'Eating Bugs', in Strange, Weird, and Wonderful (October 2008)

'Tasty Treat Revue' by Marlo Dianne

"Tasty Treat Revue", story illustration, for 'Wicked Wire', in Strange, Weird, and Wonderful (October 2008)

'Teef' by Marlo Dianne

"Teef", cover art, in Big Pulp (June 2008) (reprint)

"Change", short story, in Written Word (April 2008)

"Hunted", short story, in Big Pulp (April 2008)

"Very Tale", poem, in Tales of the Talisman (March 2008)

'Follow' by Marlo Dianne

"Follow", story illustration, for 'Graduation', in All Possible Worlds (October 2007)

'Pillows' by Marlo Dianne

"Pillows", story illustration, for 'Day Off', in All Possible Worlds (October 2007)

"The Monkey's Eye", poem, in Goblin Fruit (October 2007)

"Flesh", short story, in Down in the Cellar (June 2007)

"Bard's Bones", short story, in Fusion Fragment (March 2007)

'Fantastique' by Marlo Dianne

"Fantastique", story illustration, for 'High Concept', in All Possible Worlds (March 2007)

'Robo Rampage' by Marlo Dianne

"Robo Rampage", story illustration, for 'Iron Man', in All Possible Worlds (March 2007)

'Teef' by Marlo Dianne

"Teef", story illustration, for 'Whitening', in All Possible Worlds (March 2007)

"One", flash, in Tales of the Talisman (December 2006)

"Courting Hell", short story, in Forgotten Worlds (October 2006)

"Id", flash, in Raven Electrick (June 2006)

"A Breath of Power", short story, in AlienSkin (February / March 2006)

Amityville House of Pancakes

"Ahop 2 Cover", cover art, for Amityville House of Pancakes Vol.2 (September 2005)

"Gella Murphy: Public Dick", novella, in Amityville House of Pancakes Vol.2 (September 2005)

"Prick", flash, in From the Asylum (August 2005)

"Inticingly entitled, "Prick" builds more suspense and atmosphere in 200 words than some authors manage in 200 pages. The reader truely does justice to the material, using her intensely erotic voice to give the piece the ... umm... climax it so richly deserves..."
--Decker_Angelis on the audio version of "Prick"

"Another marvelous thoughtful story."
--Abyss & Apex, on "Chiaroscuro"

" appealing magazine to look at, with the bright, childlike simplicity and intricate detail of the cover art catching, and holding, the eye."
--Eneit on "Clockwork Dragon"

"If you couldn't tell out there, Marlo Dianne does not write formulaic crap."
--Jack Mangan, author of Spherical Tomi and host of the Deadpan

"...a good bit of fun..."
--Tangent Online, on "Courting Hell"

"...funny, superbly written and engaging... tongue-in-cheek murder mystery...The story twists and turns harder than a high Alpine road, and Gella's resolution of the mystery came out in a way I did not at all expect. Dianne's pungent writing style complements Gella's gritty narration perfectly."
--SFReader, on "Gella Murphy: Public Dick"

"I can't think of another bunch of authors I'd rather be published with. No, really; all my favorites are long dead."
--Sally Kuntz, author of "Froggie"

"Really original."
--Adrienne Jones, author of Temple of Cod and The Hoax

Friday, October 18, 2013

Jennifer Lynn Grabove (May 27, 1976 - August 30 2013)

Writer, Teacher, Friend.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Ice, Ice Baby


This is reputed to be a photo of an actual museum in the US.

Study Notes:

Why must food be anthropomorphised? I don't want my food to have a face. It can't. That means eyes to watch me eat it and a mouth to complain about my biting it. And the crying. Sweet Jesus. The crying.

I could not EVER, even if caught in the most dire of need, make myself eat (open) food that had been stored next to (open) footwear.

Why is the ice cream a soldier? Why is he grinning through a gory head wound? Why was he sent into battle with a, clearly, faulty helmet? Why does his friend appear to have arterial spray FROM HIS STOMACH? And why does it look like there's a manic aerosol can behind them, marching and drooling? WTAF KIND OF ICE CREAM SOCIAL IS THIS?

They made someone dress as ice cream? Seriously? Promoting dehumanisation and cannibalism in one overstuffed, sweltering, getting kicked in the tenders by brats, move.

Calling an ice cream a 'push up' does not count as exercise.

I'm all for supporting causes you believe in, but having an AIDS ribbon censoring something--no doubt grossly inappropriate--next to that strawberry ice cream is just...appalling.

Why is that poor boy (?) condemned to eating beared ice cream? Once your ice cream has been so neglected it has formed its own bitter sharded fortress of solitude, it is time to let it go...go down the sink. It''s just not for tummies anymore...

I don't know, maybe he has a 'script for the glasses. But I think making the cow wear a cheese hat is def crossing over into cruelty....

Thursday, May 17, 2012

A Very Special Message, From Your God, Thor (or, "Breaking, Bad")

We got a call early yesterday, just before 8am, that if we wanted an MRI, we better be at the hospital by 8.

Small problem: we live a large bit outside a few minutes from the hospital.

Additional small problem: My migraine, which hasn't so much as paused for months now, was in a state so enraged that the S.U. was only here to answer the phone--and attempt to break all laws of physics AND biology to reach the hospital--by being afraid, rather beyond terrified, to leave me alone, and so had been delaying going to work until the last possible moment...

But there was NO WAY to miss a chance at the MRI. Even in extreme migraine, even with myself and my doctor having no contact whatsoever from the specialist, even, well, ANYTHING--

Tumour in the head? Always wins.

I'm fairly sure, despite all my willpower, I screamed most of the way there. The roads are terrible, and, each time my body gets thrown, the flashing intensifies, oh, and my head tries even harder to explode.

I had to wait through someone else's appt, which would have been fine, except they made me wait right outside the MRI.

As they told me much later--after I had humiliated myself by hysterically stumbling, mostly blind, through the crowd of waiting room B, sobbing and screaming and trying desperately to find my spouse, not understanding how I wasn't dead yet because it felt like my head, and my whole torso, was being broken, being beaten, smashed to pieces by bricks--an MRI causes perm hearing damage, and is so loud, "it's dB exceeds that of a jackhammer."

I'm so exhausted, and I can't drop into sleep for more than minutes, at most, before the pain, literally, smashes me awake. I'm still mostly blind, just seeing flashing, strobbing. It's not even white, but deep deep red. As if my eyes or brain are actually bleeding.

For all I know, they are.

But, for what, by random, has turned out to be my 500th post, I refuse to leave just crawling out in shame. I'm doing that, but I am also sharing A Very Special Message from Thor.

And, in doing that, I am in no way suggesting certain people need a hammer upside the head. No. I would insist they DESERVE it. Since they care about no one else, the suffering of others means nothing to them. Hell, they wouldn't feel agony at seeing their children, or any of their family, in needless pain. But their own cranium? Cracking THAT they would care about. Some people would be well served by a shot of pain, because they completely absent of anything like empathy.

But I digress, Thor's Hammer has other places to be:

Monday, May 07, 2012

Hey, No Need To Rush...

So, if, after badgering and badgering your doctor, and I mean RELENTLESS, like a rabid, well, badger, I guess. Your doctor FINALLY does a specific test.

And the test results are: OHSHITSERIOUSLYOHSHIT

You get sent for more tests and more, and your doctor, who you always thought pretty much hated you, is visibly worried, frantic even, and is trying to get you into specialists and an MRI with every favour, trick, or paperwork that can be scrambled.

And your doctor's request for a MRI is denied.

But you do see a specialist--actually you see the specialist's intern / assistant / something, because the specialist doesn't have time for patients, even though you thought that was the major part of the whole 'doctor' gig. But, after a FOUR HOUR differential and history and exam, the specialist pops in for maybe 30 seconds. Most of which is to scan over test results, and then fill out a req for a MRI, and mark it URGENT.

Because the tests so far all 'suggest' you've got a tumour in your head, and 9 out of 10 doctors agree that is a Bad Thing.

(The tenth doctor insisted on Very Bad Thing)

Oh, and when they believe said growth is big enough that it is crushing your pituitary AND your optic nerve--sending your hormones into chaos, your migraines into excruciating (and potentially lethal), and frequently shorting out your vision...

When you get all this, and you get your MRI appt...oh, and most importantly, you are me:

Your appt is in two months.

I am not being a drama queen when I tell you...

The pain, and everything else, but oh especially the pain, is getting worse

I can't imagine I'll be alive in two months...

Thursday, April 26, 2012

And the Needless Douchebag of the Day Award Goes To...

I thought Big Fish had a lock on this.

They keep punishing a fellow user and deleting her posts. Because she's a migrainer, and has a close friend with epilepsy, and she warns when a game may bother those who are photosensitive, because the demo contains flashing lights. She does her best to describe how bad and how long such a section is, and always says it might not bother others, but to be careful if you have these issues.

Many users--myself vigorously included--feel there should be such simple warnings--on the game page. But we absolutely know we can take them seriously from someone who shares our condition. What 'normal' people consider super annoying, that can put some of us in the hospital. Or worse.

She had posted a couple lines about today's game, just saying she had problems with a certain section, and giving others the heads up.

I was writing her a thank you--my head, shockingly, is worse than it's ever been, and I def don't want pain I can avoid. When I tried to submit my response, I got scolded. Once again, a BFG mod--and there's only a few mods who handle the forums, so it's probably always the same mod--had locked down her post and left a nasty hate-o-gram, saying it was spam that had nothing to do with the game.

They do this because they think the warnings hurt sales. You know what hurts? A fucking trip to the ER, screaming and vomming with a full blown migraine that was completely avoidable. And, never forget, any migraine is a chance to stroke out and die.

And it hurts sales far more when I know BFG is intentionally redacting info that could prevent a whole lot of suffering, at minimum. In fact, this morning, I decided giving them a penny right now made me feel sick(er), and WAS planning on filling a punch card, so they lost four sales, this month, just from me. Add other discriminatory decisions they've made lately, and I'm wondering why I have a membership. Now, add in that I often gift the SU with games, and...THAT is a LOT of sales.

The pigs.

But, barely into the afternoon, and someone had to top them. The specialist, for that little thing, you know, the tumour in my head? They refused to speak to the SU. They insisted they would interact only with me directly. By phone. I can't use the phone. We're in an area that the phone company doesn't care to invest in. Massive understatement alert. That means our lines don't just crackle and break up, they squeal. Seriously. Like livestock. In agony. I avoided phones before, obviously. But now, my phone means instant full blown migraine. It's classified as a weapon. Still, they refused to talk to the SU. Even when reminded outright that I am hearing impaired, they insist, if I want an appt, I must talk to them by phone. I tried. I got a full blown migraine, much of which is still with me, and will stay with me for DAYS. I also got the answering machine. So I still have no appt, and I'm expected to call them again.

You can imagine what I want to call them.

So the SU has to come home early from work, to call them again.

I have no intention of exposing myself to the phone line again.

I'm confident that the cursing I manage, in the dark, in the fetal position, will eventually get them to understand they WANT to deal with my spouse, who can hear, who isn't in extreme (physical) pain, and is--probably--very unlikely to share an actual opinion of them and their intelligence...

Oh, and did I mention that heavy construction vehicles have been banging and squealing outside all day?

And that my neighbour ordered enough wood to build an ark, and INSISTS on chainsawing it all, and starts each day BEFORE the sun is even up?

Or the bird who has nested at my bedroom window and has spent the last two days repeating the same sentence, every few seconds?


Monday, April 23, 2012

Ready to Grab Some Games and Save the World? No, I mean LITERALLY...

So, you want to save the world.

But you're poor.

And, despite your late childhood, where the kitchen had a microwave salvaged from the roadside, a microwave that actually rolled its countdown with rotary dials for each number, clicking down to 3, and only three--heating in a four digit range was unimaginable to these developers--zeroes with sharp loud ticks like a doomsday device. Despite its presence, and you leaning into press your face near its creepy glow, idly wondering if its micro (or macro) leakage would bury the needle on a geiger counter, you never developed superpowers. Maybe you needed gamma rays. Or the spider middleman wasn't optional...

Still, you can do amazing things; it's just easy to forget how awesome you are. Let's start with a simple reminder.

Go! Save the Rainforest!


I'll wait.

Oh! It's easier with some help. The guys at Humble Bundle are offering a game pack. Actually, it's 3 games and their full soundtracks, all DRM free. If you're kinky and WANT DRM, you sick piece of diseased excrement, you disgust me, but go! Go pay more and you can get stuff through Steam, you furry grime of crud that sloughed off of filth.

If you, say, worked an extra hour this week--and you live in a wondrous bizarro world, and, ergo, GOT PAID for it--you could go giddy and meet the average donation, and they'll throw in a full length animated movie movie and another odd game, as bonus thank yous. But, if you're poor like me--my illness means I've had no income for two years; I should really call myself a FORMER writer and artist, as much as that hurts. However, now that they think they've found another growth, this one in my brain or just below it, I could soon just be a former...everything.

I donated the simple and proud $1.

For that I got:

Botanicula (2012), full game AND full soundtrack
Machinarium (2009), full game AND full soundtrack
and Samorost 2 (2007), full game AND full soundtrack

All by Amanita Design.

I've seen people pirating Botanicula. Seriously. These 'people' desperately need to be slapped across the face with used 'sanitary products'. You can get the legit version for a few cents, dictate that you want ALL those cents to go to charity (in this case, the World Land Trust, who are working on that save the rainforest bit), get bonuses, AND get a sweet download speed in your choice of flavour: direct or torrent.

If you don't see that the humble bundle is better all around, I think you spent too much time leaning into your microwave...

This widget will change over when new bundles are released. I bought my bundle within an hr of release. As of 1:15 am, April 23rd, they're about to break 57k bundles sold, and 500k raised. Previous bundles have blown past 2 million in sales. It would be cool if this one made that number look tiny:

STILL going to just walk away? Take THIS:

If you didn't just fall into the deep end of love, you ARE dead inside.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


This is a joke so obscure, LITERALLY only one person in the two universes will get it, and that person is probably not reading this.

Anyway, THIS:


is the one person , ever, who needs a face tattoo. Okay, technically, it's ritual scarring. I'm just saying he needs something cool burned into his face.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

I Don't Care How Big Your Geek Is...

...there is NO WAY this fills its INTENDED purpose, and becomes, say, cake at a party, and the most demure and mature among you aren't compelled--COMPELLED--to say things like:

"OMG, I can't believe you just swallowed the whole thing..."

"Well. I know SOMEBODY who doesn't have a gag reflex..."

Or hells, just plain:

"Peen: It's the OTHER other meat."

They CLAIM these are silicone molds of the original Alien head. But really now. Why include a set of what appear to be 7 to 9 inch molds. I hesitate to say to be bite sized. Wince. But those are DEFINITELY hand sized. There's no way this gets through design and approval and quality control without everyone giggling with their inner twelve year old boy.

Totally Relevant Trivia: The design of the Alien had to be changed multiple times. Because the producers et al ruled it too phallic. Yeah. This is the 'clean' version. Enjoy!

Less Relevant Trivia: I miss cake. Badly.

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Where Have You Been?

The Lowlights, To Sum Up, Verson:

I spent December in the hospital, in Isolation.

I got another infection, only this one cultured as a semi-resistant strain. My treatment was, in every way, horrific. I spent most of my time screaming, because it felt like my insides were being ripped out. I discovered pain is not something they consider worth treating in the hospital. It's routine, so they have no interest in it. They also didn't care that the combo of adhesive and IV antibiotics were giving me third degree burns all over my right (dominant) arm, or that the ABs were causing me to projectile vomit at even the smell of food. Yes, I started throwing up every time food delivery STARTED--well before they got my room. They weren't interested in giving me gravol; nausea was an expected side effect. Oh yeah, you bet I lost some weight. Still, as a diet, I don't recommend it. More importantly, I lost being treated like a human. Lots of staff wouldn't enter my room. Others screamed arguments in the hall about if they could be forced to enter my room. You would think, working in a FUCKING HOSPITAL, they would be informed about germs, but no. They tried to make my spouse leave, and got flat refusal. But they made even my spouse glove and gown. It was also my spouse who picked me up and got me to and from the bathroom, oh so many times. I'm so allergic to IVs, they do the opposite of hydrate me, and my body tries desperately to flush the poison out. I was so dehydrated, my mouth was constantly bleeding, from my lips splitting open, and I couldn't swallow food or what meds my spouse was able to give me, because I was beyond having no spit. Everything just stuck to the inside of mouth.

My only other real company, through my beloved laptop, was Matt Nathanson. Modern Love. Whoa. Such a gorgeous album. But I am a hopeless sucker for twisted fairy tales...

And though, my treatment did kill off the bug and I got a negative culture to prove it. I also have the infection on my perm record. For the rest of my life, yes really, all medical personnel will glove and gown for ANY interaction with me. They will also gather in a worried cluster and discuss among them at length beforehand, about who is going to be forced to do this. Because medical staff weren't already hostile enough to me. I've already got to experience this humiliation multiple times. Most recently when my doctor ordered a routine blood test. I also discovered my blood now travels alone, in its own BIOHAZARD bag. Even it is in permanent isolation.

I spent February accepting my heart was still bleeding, torn and scattered everywhere. My torso, black and empty. This time, not literally. Feb 14th marked the anniversary of my daughter's diagnosis of terminal lymphoma. It came after her brother's of 10 October 2010. They both fought so hard. Their bodies just gave out on them; they never gave up. We lost Phoenix June 9th, 2011. Every extra day with them was so worth it, but I was hoping he would make it a year. But on June 9, the Cancer attacked his brain. He began having seizures every few minutes, and even as tight as I could hold him in my arms, I lost my son. And I became something that should never exist: the reverse of an orphan.

It was also then that I found out that in all the years the hospital had been open, no one with his diagnosis had lived to even see a month. It made nothing easier. But it made me even more proud of my boy.

My Girl fought just as hard, but the Cancer's opening blow had been taking her intestine, and her body just couldn't come back from that. No one told me until after, but she never responded to meds. But aside from the week in hospital, after the surgery where they tried to take all the Cancer out, she spent nearly every moment of those two months in my lap. She looked up at me the whole time. I would have forgiven her for looking up at me with anger or even with hate, because I wouldn't fix it. But no, my girl looked up at me with total love, the same way I had looked down at her, in what seemed like only moments before. When, after fiercely defending her birth-brother from me, and earning her name, she curled inside the top of my coveralls and went to sleep against my heart. We lost her first, on Easter, when the Cancer took her lungs. She was going into respiratory arrest every few seconds, but she wouldn't give up. She kept fighting her way back, and choking on the tube. As blessed as I was for being chosen as their family, I was blessed in another way, as I was for her brother two months later. I held my girl until she was gone. I had been so afraid that when I was at the doctor's or hospital myself, the Cancer would win, and I couldn't bear the thought of either of my children dying alone and afraid. I can't know how aware they were. I don't know how aware I'd want them to be, if it meant they felt the pain. But one of the few comforts I have is knowing that I did everything I could to be who they deserved. I don't think I made it. But I tried.

And, a year later, I can say completely, the stuff about time making things better? It's beyond utter bullshit. What will happen is you'll have a lot of people who laugh at your pain. You'll have nearly as many ask when you're going to have more children. I don't know how to respond to either of those...I hesitate to give them the respect of calling them people. My children were people. These twits are just assholes. I actually got the 'when you're going to have more children' thing ON THE SAME DAY as I lost my daughter. WTAF?

The answer to that is: I'm not. My disease, which is were the rest of my time has gone, stress and time being some of the many things that make it worse, made it impossible for me to have children of my own body. But the guys were never less family because they didn't have my dna. They were more. They needed a home. We both did. We gave that to each other. I've cried a lot of tears over my disease, but I'm grateful for it in this. I cannot survive the pain of losing another child. Most, of those who know me, would argue I didn't survive this.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Sock It To Me

I was in a store the other day, and they were selling 'handmade' socks in a bin.

I know it sounds pissy, but they weren't even made WELL. It was like someone's first crack at a new pattern and they got lost, and it was like 70% utter fubar. I mean, I think it NEEDED its label of 'socks'.

Also, they were a hideous...sort of...muddy shade of grey AND super crazy coarse yarn. It was like they ripped the wool off the poor sheep themselves. And the sheep had been caught in burr bushes. And fallen in a muddy dirt pile. I hope they got the poor thing medical attention.

But the worst was yet to come.

I hand knit socks all the time. People love them. They ADORE them, but they won't pay for them. Forget time, skills, and labour, they won't pay enough to cover your yarn costs. And I don't buy expensive yarn. It's full of allergens and irritants. You might as well scrub off your flesh with a Brillo pad as you soak yourself in concentrated acid all day. Good luck with that.

Being an artist, I use LOTS of materials. While I always get the highest quality I can, that's almost never actually 'the expensive stuff', and, of course, high volume and careful detailed planning--this is my career, remember--means I can usually score some discounts, even on really great supplies.

So this is high demand item, with each pair taking at least a week of hand stitching to make, and I can't even sell it at cost. People want it, YES, but they actually expect it for free. Seriously.

(And I've checked with other artists: it's not a me problem. People DEEPLY value handmade things, but not enough to trade money for them. Not even a token amount of money. Not even for a charity drive.)


I've tried to sell socks for $15; I might as well have asked for 15k.

It's insane.

And those disgusting ratty socks in the bin? Their tag said, and I swear I quote:


I snorted / choked so hard, I might have lost some spleen.


Uh...good luck with that?

I'm Pretty Sure This Falls Under Blasphemy....

My brain gets stunned many times in a day.

It knows better--it's known better AT LEAST since I was three--but supersaturated stupidity or cruelty still just...stuns it somehow. I can't imagine why.

Sometimes, it gets smacked so hard, it just STOPS. And I swear it's not going to reboot.

Which leads us to this.

Oh, yes, I took screenshots! I did not want to give the site traffic. Although, I did not spare them shame. I didn't obscure or crop their banner. as you will.

I also went screenshot because I wasn't sure how long it could exist, before a deity of faith or language--glowing and floating in righteous rage, natch-- nuked it to oblivion.

We can only hope they spare the internet...

(No fear, these previews only link to larger versions of the screenshot...)

Accoutrements Jesus Christ Action Figure
Text of Image, fully quoted, errors preserved:

This is also in the alt tag of the image, but in case you can't read the image or the alt tags--

(See Footnote)

Brace yourself.

Here we go, quoting exactly:

"Jeus was an extraordinary healer. Nearly a quarter of the gospels describe his powers over sickness. To the downtrodden, he taught restraint and charity in the face of opression. As a result, the powerless learned to maintain dignity without being arrogant. He delivered this message to the people: "Yo dawgs, y'all best buy my action from Accoutrements."

/end quote

NO. Just NO. Just--

Hell--to the bell, to the well, to the spell--NO.




And hell no, go DIAF--in fact, Hell will do nicely. I'm pretty sure Jesus was not a moral sucking whore, of products or other things, and even is he was really desperate to pay the rent, and his dad had cut him off, I know full fucking well Jesus did NOT speak like a badly programmed hybrid cyborg of Drunk-Paula and Randy Jackson.

Sure, he didn't speak English. Being Jewish, I'm guessing his preferred language was Jewish, and I'm sure it was as poetic and beautiful as anything Shakespeare tossed down over lunch.

(Hey, even if you refused to read them, I know you've SEEN the massive chunk of slab that is just the SURVIVING works of Shakespeare. Even printed, as the twits do, in bacteria font, it's still, basically, legally defined as a tree. To be that prolific, he must have kept going while he ate, while he peed, while he slept...I imagine he probably knocked out at least a three act DURING his own death scene.)

Also, Jesus would kick your fucking ass. He would kick it so hard, he created the B.C. Ask the moneylenders in the temple. No one is as brutal as an assumed 'pacifist'. If you commit to righting wrongs, well, pretty words and kindness, don't usually work.

Jesus was seriously badass.

He was also a decent man. And his fate is what happens to decent men...


1. Alt Tags:

Firefox 7.0: Hey! No really! HEY! We finally fixed the fucking blinding full screen screaming white weapons of destruction, seizure, and migraine that we introduced--only because of pure hatred of all humanity--with EVERY page load in 4.0. But we STILL refuse to show you alt tags on hover. You WILL learn not to be disabled! YOU WILL!! (tm)

I don't know. It seems kind of long for a tagline to me. But it DOES fit with their coding practices, so...

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Arsenic is Organic Too! All Natural!

"Hydraulic Acid."

--Colin Mochrie ('Hydraulic') and Brad Sherwood ('Acid'), during the 'Two Headed Person' skit, with the Subject / Title "Organic Chemistry", on Drew Carey's Improv-A-Ganza S01E23

Brad! I haven't actually worked in a lab since 1998, and I still winced, cringed, and had to look away in despair / 2nd hand embarrassment. My labcoat is crammed away in a molecular array in a corner of my closet--the Dragon Lair is Itty Bitty--but I swear I can still hear its muffled sobbing...

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Phoenix (May 1st 1995 - June 9, 2011)

Diagnosed: Renal Lymphoma 10/10/10.
Prognosis: Less than a month to live.

Actual Outcome: My son fought a brutal disease, and he fought HARD. He fought every day, every moment, for nine months. His body gave out on him, never his will. When cancer beat him, he was a third of his body weight, the cancer had consumed both kidneys and was attacking his brain, and he was STILL fighting to stay with us...

May 1st 1995 - 10:10pm, June 9, 2011
Precious Sun
Brave Adventurer
Family Forever

Friday, June 03, 2011

It just Keeps Coming...

Phoenix is back in the hospital.

We knew he was losing ground. He couldn't eat, or drink. We had to give him subcutaneous fluids--we were dosing him every night with an IV bag through a needle just under his skin--to keep him hydrated. Sometimes he would shake with the effort of walking and stumble, and he would shake hard as he tried to crouch to lie down. I had to help him lie down yesterday. He couldn't do it. And I've had to wrap him not just in a blanket, but drape a heating pad over him; he was just so cold.

He couldn't stop drooling today. I was quite handy with the Kleenex, but I was worried about the fluid he was using--and the look. He had the same broken look...just before he was diagnosed.

My worry was enough that the SU came home from work, and took him to the hospital for tests.

The cancer has made a comeback. A big one.


They're keeping him overnight, and giving him Elspar.

The SU authorised them giving him this drug when he was first diagnosed with renal lymphoma. I didn't get told until afterward that it was his only chance to live even one more day, and that it causes an anaphylactic reaction in 30% of patients.

It's so potent that it's only given as single dose, and it's always a random call, whether it will knock back the cancer, or just kill you both outright.

But there's one other thing. While they cycle all chemo treatments. they usually don't come back around to Elspar. Not just because it's a last ditch drug, but because it loses most of its effectiveness if the patient survives the first dose. The only reason to come back to it is they literally have nothing else they can do...

My poor little boy...

And last week, J., my best friend of twenty years had to go the ER to get diagnosed with breast cancer. Why? Because a bitch doctor raised the bar on stupid and spiteful. Sure, J. was complaining for TWO MONTHS about an enormous lump that could not only be felt but actually fucking SEEN. Sure, J., a frequent migraine survivor, insisted she was in enormous pain. But all that didn't mean shit. J. was dismissed as a pest and a drama queen. Why? Because people our age can't get cancer.



Where the actual fuck are doctors getting their schooling and training? Are they beating them in the head with a lead pipe--and force-feeding them flakes of the lead that fly off--just so they'll make sure they have enough fucking attitude and brain damage to make absolutely certain they'll kill more people than they help? For Fuck's Sake...

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Hissyfit (May 1st 1999 - April 24, 2011)

May 1st 1999 - 1:25 P.M., April 24, 2011
Beloved Daughter
Devoted Guardian
Family Forever

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Come Back

While they were confirming Pheen's infection, they were thorough and ran other tests. The ultrasound showed that his kidney was reenveloped by a mass. So they did another aspiration test. To get a sample of anything suspicious, they slide in a long very thin needle, and suck up a little bit to test. It's like a biopsy, but far less invasive.

They got the results they were expecting, once they saw the ultrasound. His cancer has grown back WHILE he was on chemo.

Of course, the break from chemo, that was supposed to give him two months of a normal life, is now impossible. The cancer specialist had to create a new regimen, something much stronger. He starts Thursday.

It's going to be horrible. It took months--and several more meds--to get his body adjusted to low dose chemo, to the point where he only felt miserable about half of the week. And the terror of infections will also be more grim...

Monday, April 11, 2011


Phoenix is at the ER. He just had his 'last' (for now) chemo treatment. They were ready to declare him in remission. Now...Their best case guess is infection. That is not a best case for someone with Cancer and chemo :|

Since Hissy started chemo, she refuses to eat. She's on meds for nausea and to increase her appetite. Nothing. Her bitchitude is stronger than anything medicine can throw at her. The SU is syringe feeding her, but she's still losing weight...

I should be at the ER myself, but the guys come before me--always. My disease is really amping up, especially with pain. And I discovered I've got another spinoff disease: anemia. But I wasn't supposed to know that. Apparently, every bloodtest I've ever had, I've come back as anemic. But my fucking moron doctor decided I wasn't anemic ENOUGH, for it to mentioned, let alone treated.

So how did I find out? The SU was calling the doctor's office, as usual, trying to get my results. There is a new nurse/receptionist in the rotation. She somehow wasn't taught the 'we outright lie to patients, so we can just dismiss them with disgust, and they can't do shit'. Instead, she made me an appt, saying this was serious, and my doctor would want to talk to me about treatment. I'm sure 'never speak the truth' and 'never assume a doctor gives a shit' have been well beaten into her now.

And I have to go back to the same doctor this afternoon for an allergy shot. I was supposed to get it in the same appt where I was told my blood tests were normal. And I had to counter with anemia. And, whether caught in a fucking lie or bored out of his mind, my doctor started hyperactive scrolling though all my blood tests. Then I got the 'you've always come back with this. But you're usually only 20 points below the minimum, and we are not going to treat that.'

See, to me, the minimum IS the lowest you can go. That's the whole point. They have designated a range as safe and healthy. Being outside of that IS a problem. Fuck.

Then he refused to let his nurse give me my allergy shot because, "The day is over. We go home now."

Uh, yeah I know there is a closing time. But I also know that my appt time had plenty of time for an allergy shot. It's not MY fault if you drag your feet or make too many appts. It's a two hour trip to the doctor. With me in agony. Which I now know is probably made worse by anemia. But who the hell knows what other diseases I have that he decided weren't important enough to share...

Thursday, February 24, 2011

My Girl

Hissyfit is finally home after being released from hospital.

For now.

They want her back soon for chemo.

She spent her day lying on a pillow I put down for her. A princess deserves a dais. But a princess who has been sliced open like a fish, from under her chin, all the way down, deserves whatever she fucking wants.

I've tried to comfort her, but--for the first time in her existence--she doesn't want to be talked to, or petted, or anything. I was the only one who could get her to purr and even EAT at the hospital. But now, she just wants me to GTFO and DIAF.

It hurts so much to see her like this, and its worse because she's given me utter devotion
and support through my illness. I was looking forward to the honour of giving her back any small comfort I could.

So I've lost comfort both ways.

The doctors say she's going really well. The actual word used was 'amazing'. She's lost a lot of weight, but over late summer and into fall she has gone from her scrawny self to, well, ball shaped. I think she ate her feelings.

But that gave her reserves, so after not eating for a week, she looks normal sized. She's eating now, but she's having a horrible time digesting her food. Missing most of your intestine will do that. Her doctors insist she'll adjust. They also insisted that after what we've done with Phoenix, they expect to be treating her--and him--for years.

That choked me up a bit.

But hey, if it was all on stubbornness, refusing to give up or let go, they can fucking count on it...

Friday, February 18, 2011

Cancer Like Lightning

While I was lying in her cage at the hospital, talking and petting in such a way that she could not resist the goo and the purr, we got confirmation.

The biopsy of Hissyfit's tumour confirmed she has terminal lymphoma.

Yes, the same cancer as Phoenix, and only months after his diagnosis.

And they aren't even biological siblings.

It just...breaks all reason.

And hearts. Those the deepest.

Although, once again, we are as blessed as we are cursed. The tumour had ruptured her bowel, flooding her abdomen with bacteria. It would have killed her in less than two days.

Bless all for this family's closeness, and, even more important, crazy ass stubbornness...

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Operation Stealth Ninja Glittery Pink Rhino Project

I have received my Rhino Piece from our Supreme Overlord / Badass Angel.

Curse you, Canada Post! I'm in Group 2, 31 of 61. actually arrived here, even with its envelope gutted. Something CP likes to do to all my mail it doesn't actually lose or utterly destroy.

Through slicing open and taking whatever they find interesting, CP has most of my contributor copies. I mean, really now. Do they truly think those are going to become precious? And they always send along the empty envelope, so I know what they did.

But although this envelope was sliced open, somehow,the Rhino Piece arrived. In pristine condition. A miracle? Or Canada Post's trembling fear of our Overlord?

I think we all know the answer to that.

Now, I just need to find the other 60 minions of Group 2...

Monday, February 14, 2011

Torn Apart

Hissy has just gone in for emergency surgery.

The tumour they found in her abdomen--Stop. I know. But the concept of irony and its bitter funny? Just makes me feel sick right now--the tumour perforated her intestines. They not only need to get the growth out, they need to scrabble to repair as much as they can.

Even if all goes well, she is going to be in the hospital for days.

The SU's awkward--but still determined--persistence hit major affirmation today.

At the vet's, it was all no temp, no pain, nothing wrong, go home.

But I have been merciless nagging the SU to listen to instincts and feelings. They're not everything, but we have them for a reason.

Well. Even though I did not pomp back with an Alec Guiness 'I told You So', each time, or any time, some situ exploded and the SU ended up pacing in frenzy and self-flagellating with "I KNEW I should / shouldn't have..."

Even without the dub of Obi Wan, the SU did not back down. Probably rolling their eyes and snarking, the vet did an ultrasound.

Hello tumour!

And hello to referral to Brilliant Hospital: I was expecting you.

But even the good doctors were confused and horrified. The scans show this thing is ripping her insides apart. Yet she has no sign of fever or pain.

They just don't know my Hissy girl.

One Christmas Eve, we noticed her limping. Just a tiny bit. The SU decided she had just strained a paw somehow.

Then I caught a glimpse of her leg in brighter light...and totally lost my shit.

Her leg was black.

Not her fur.

Her SKIN was black.

Emergency vet visit immediately deployed.

(This is why our vets don't suck completely; they ENCOURAGE 24 hr access.)

Anyway, it turned out one of her claws had decided to curl back and grow INTO her foot. It had grown VERY deep into the pad of her paw, and the resulting infection got so bad that, yes, her whole leg was black. We never got a clear answer on just how much longer before she either died or lost her freakin leg. But, better not to know.

Her and pills is whole 'nother epic. It has given her both the nick--and the verb--'Linda Hamilton'....

Thing is, she has an established medical history of having a horrible condition, but showing no sign at all of fever or what should be excruciating pain.

I'd give them all some Lenore Eye, except I'm told some of them teared up for us.

As much as I'm sick over this surgery, I'm also dreading when she wakes up. Because I know she's going to be utterly terrified...and there is absolutely nothing I can do...


Cancer Squared

No point in fucking around.

I just heard from the SU.

Hissy has been diagnosed with Cancer.

The fates are cruel.

But this?

We're fucking cursed, I swear.

My girl is at the hospital now, with her own referral and the best doctors on this continent. They'll be giving her tests all day, trying to determine if chemo or surgery can give her more or better time.

Pheen heard me crying, and came upstairs to comfort me. I can't explain to him what's happened, but he knows it's bad. When the pain of my illness makes me scream and cry, he doesn't come. Not really. It's...routine, I guess, so he ignores it. This time, he felt srs bsns.

I had designed Eternity Circles for both my guys, and I just found an artisan willing to make them. They'll wear the pendants just like they did their cat tags, but each one has a personal message, as well as their name. And these ones can't tarnish. They're forever, just like family.

I couldn't make them just as I wanted; I couldn't afford to. But really, nothing I could make would be as beautiful as they are.

The Circles were designed so that they are reversible and can be threaded onto a necklace. And when they can no longer carry them, I will wear my children at my heart for however long my life is....

Valentines Day...and the rest of my poor heart, was irrevocably broken...

Of course.


As I type this, Hissy is on her way to the vet.

She's stopped eating. And drinking. She doesn't come when she's called.

Yes, Hissy always reported immediately when called. She's always been a...confused dog in a cat's body.

So she's seeing a doctor. We don't fuck around with medical stuff here. We know better. We learned it in the worst ways.

I should be with her, but it wasn't an option even mentioned. My own medical condition is currently...very grim, and I think the SU made the unilateral decision to worry sick about one person. Not two.

But I feel horrible. Not just because of my medical situ, natch. Not just because I could lose Phoenix and Hissyfit, together. The utter agony of the prospect...but you can't control fate. The same thing that brought them to me was always going to take them away. But you always think it will be later, so late as to be never. You have to, or you'd refuse to connect to anyone.

And that, that will bring you more pain than it saves...

I feel so bad because I'm not there. And she's seeing the vet, not the hospital. You need a referral to get access to the good doctors. She doesn't get to coast in because her brother has one. But I feel the most horror because she left here in a cat carrier.

Hissy is terrified of leaving the house. She will be screaming herself hoarse in her terror, the whole time she is out.

The way she is supposed to go to the vet's is: inside a bag.

More specifically, inside my black pleather backpack. I wear it in reverse, and buckle it in with me. I keep the bag closed, except for having enough room for me to slip one hand in, to keep pressed against her, as I talk to her, constantly, trying to remind her that at least she's not alone, that she is loved.

There's no frantic screaming this way. Though, of course, we're both still scared.

But I'm not there.

I know this was an obvious logical decision for the SU. But I know that, right now, she's frantic with terror. And it feels like my stomach is being cut out with broken glass.

With sick, and with shame...
Online Portfolio: Small samples of my art.

Forbidden Dragon: Very small online print gallery.

They're Free. Take One. Or All:

"Despair" by H.P. Lovecraft (recorded live, 06/22/07)

Prick by Marlo Dianne (higher res single; posted 02/08/07)

Prick by Marlo Dianne (previously appeared in digital print; August 2005, From the Asylum; posted 02/08/07)

A Fruitless Assignment by Ambrose Bierce (posted 01/22/07)

Id by Marlo Dianne (higher res single; posted 01/13/07)

Star Wars in 230 Words by Byron Starr (posted 12/07/06)

Id by Marlo Dianne (previously appeared in digital print; June 2006, Raven Electrick; posted 11/30/06)

Seen by Marlo Dianne (previously unpublished; posted 10/04/06)

Herbert West: Reanimator - Part 1 - From the Dark by H. P. Lovecraft (04/04/06; posted 05/13)

Herbert West: Reanimator - Part 2 - The Plague-Daemon by H. P. Lovecraft (04/16/06; posted 05/18)

Herbert West: Reanimator - Part 3 - Six Shots By Moonlight by H. P. Lovecraft (05/17/06; posted 06/01)

Herbert West: Reanimator - Part 4 - The Scream of the Dead by H. P. Lovecraft (07/14/06; posted 07/17)

Herbert West: Reanimator - Part 5 - The Horror from the Shadows by H. P. Lovecraft (08/12/06; posted 08/14)

Herbert West: Reanimator - Part 6 - The Tomb-Legions by H. P. Lovecraft (10/18/06; posted 10/18)

The Velveteen Rabbit by Margery Williams (03/27/06; posted 05/02)

Books I've saved, forever free for everyone:

Mary Hartwell Catherwood - The Romance of Dollard (100%)

James De Mille - The Lily and the Cross (posted 01/27/10)

James De Mille - A Castle in Spain (posted 01/05/10)

Robert J. C. Stead - The Homesteaders (posted 04/20/09)

James De Mille - The Cryptogram (posted 03/29/09)

James De Mille - The Dodge Club (posted 10/29/08)

James De Mille - The Lady of the Ice: A Novel (posted 07/07/07)

(As a PP for DP):

Émile Faguet - Initiation into Literature (posted 07/27/03)

Stephen Hudson - War-time Silhouettes (posted 06/17/03)

Ezra Pound - Certain Noble Plays of Japan (posted 06/14/03)

Elias Johnson - Legends, Traditions, and Laws of the Iroquois, or Six Nations, and History of the Tuscarora Indians (posted 06/08/03)

Magnus Gustaf Mittag-Leffler - Niels Henrik Abel (posted 05/19/03)

+474 pages for DP (from April - July 2003)

September 22 2005 - September 14 2013

All Material
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Marlo Dianne.

All Rights Reserved.