Ubik on the beach, please. [Weekly Head Voices #54]

At least part of this post was conceived right on this balcony over here:

One day, I wish to own such a balcony.

Yes friends, that there right in front of us is the beach, and right in front of that the North Sea, and right over that the beautiful setting sun. We will definitely be going back there, it’s just that awesome spending a few days right on the sand.

During my vacation, I had time to to spend some of it with one of my favourite authors, the late but fantastically great Philip K. Dick. Those of you with some culture will immediately think of VALIS, a masterpiece that he wrote after becoming more or less psychotic in 1974. The rest will go Ah! when I explain that Bladerunner, Total Recall , Minority Report and many more movies are based on his work. This time I visited Ubik, a book he wrote in 1969, chock-full of precogs, telepaths, anti-psis and the whole idea that your current reality might not be the only or even the most authentic reality. After reading this with great enjoyment, I’ve come to the conclusion that Dick might have been functionally psychotic for a longer time, but somehow was able to channel this masterfully into his truly psychedelic writing.

Ubik drops you back in the thick of things fast. Taken as directed, Ubik speeds relief to head and stomach. Remember: Ubik is only seconds away. Avoid prolonged use.

In other extremely significant happenings, genetic offspring #2 spontaneously started walking independently on Monday, August 8, 2011. Just to prove a point, she started doing dance moves during walking on the same day. Picture this: Little person, head and eyes disproportionately big and hence super cute, walking like a beginner across the room and then stopping halfway to do a little swinging-hips-jig. My cuteness-appreciation gland just about burst.

We’ve now also acquired the pinnacle of human transportation technology:

Say hello to your transportation future, humankind!

Yes people not from Holland, that’s a really weird three-wheeled bicycle with a huge wooden container on the front. Here it’s called a BAKFIETS. You fill the wooden container with kids (I’ve tested up to 4, works like a charm) or crates of beer (I’m soon going to test), fit the tent if it’s raining, and then cycle anywhere. It’s silent and does infinite miles to the gallon! I did get some funny looks when I cycled the 15 kilometres from Bergschenhoek, where we bought this baby, to Delft, but that might have been the fact that it was pitch dark at a time, and I had that crazy I-just-bought-a-bakfiets-and-I-will-cycle-her-home-come-hell-or-high-water look in my eye. Whatever the case may be, I can only very highly recommend this form of transport.

Alright kids, that’s it for now. I’m doing pomodori left and right, but The Man keeps on piling on more work. It’s especially funny how just about every research grant programme worth its salt has its deadline right about now. One day I’m going to stick it to The Man I tell you!

P.S. This weekend, I’ll not be working on research grant proposals at a truly wonderful event with some suitably wonderful people.

6 thoughts on “Ubik on the beach, please. [Weekly Head Voices #54]”

  1. I absolutely adore PKD, but somehow I never got round to Valis. I’m putting it on the list right now. For some reason I find myself drawn to the slightly odd ones, such as Ubik and the Three Stigmata of Palmer Eldritch. A Scanner Darkly was a big fat “meh” for me.

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