I can’t remember what my mother looked like.
All recollections of her are opaque and untethered in my head, disingenuous and unreliable. I’m certain every memory of life with her before the End has been manipulated by scraps of old magazine advertisements I mentally morph us into, fragments of billboards I stand and wonder if she or I ever striked that long dead model’s pose. Those pieces of ancient frivolous self-important media are all I have to reconstruct her with – and I feel guilty for it, sure, she never liked the establishment, I bet she’d be happy to see her daughter living post-capitalist and free from all institutions.
Well, most institutions.
If I can count anything in my mind as credible, I do remember her telling me never to get married.
Nihilist doctrine may declare everything unimportant, but that doesn’t mean everything can’t be fun.
I’m un-legally married to twelve people, three of whom are half mutant, and four more of whom are no longer alive.
Every Tuesday it’s wedding night on the rooftops, a massive party where two or three people are picked to find someone to marry, and the whole party is in their honour.
These marriages mean nothing, it’s just nice to have night that’s all about you and three to five other humanoids in case the next night sends us all into oblivion for real.
Not all of us can make a living off of fighting in the pits for food, if you’re like me, you spend precious daylight hours digging though the trash of humanity; evading rubble avalances as you climb through collapsed skyscrapers looking for anything you could make into shelter, scaling concrete walls for the tasty plants that grow in the cracks, fighting with neighbours and enemy cults alike for any kindling that’s not been doused in chemical waste.
After I take all this time searching for the means to survive, the last thing I want to do at the end of the day is figure out how to cook it all together to make a tasty meal – so I’ve compiled a couple great recipes from my Crafter friends to ease the creative burden.
This is one of the fancier treats I’ve eaten since the world plunged into chaos.
Great for groups of friends gossiping around a nice garbage fire at night, which is Crafter tradition.
- 3 fistfuls of uranium dust
(easiest to find around the Graft steam pits)
- 9 small bundles of nettle thorns
- Two pinches of barbed wire rust
(gives it the great tang)
- 2 large mouthfuls of water
(doesn’t have to be clean!)
Mix up into a good pile of goop and stuff handfuls of it into tin cans, then place those cans in a low burning fire and wait for it to bubble and puff up!
I’ll add more later!
The obvious transpires first; this track starts off with cataclysm, with the apocalypse, with the end.
But what happens when the sun rises again the next day?
Sure society fragmented – but there’s still dating to be done and cool music to listen to, and maybe it is all inter-spliced with bouts of radiation poisoning and fighting a warring gang of Grift’s for a meal, but we cling to these every day shards of normality no matter how badly they cut us because despite every interpersonal transgression I’ve faced here in the apocalypse zone, the steady current of apathetic desolation and nothingness is running underneath everyone, ceaseless, and ready to sweep us all away if we don’t continuously build our lives upon it
Last night my date tried to kill me
I wasn’t intimidated or anything, honestly it was kinda nice not to have to make the first move. They reached across the table and went for the throat with the serrated edge of a tin can (rookie move if you ask me) but they missed, and obviously there was my chance to attack but instead we made plans to see each other tomorrow night.
So where are we gonna go?
Each cult has staked out some great areas for first dates, it just depends how much toxic sludge you want to wade through, or how many sewer mercenaries and organ harvesters you want to meet along the way.
If you’re looking for something chill, the Nihilists always keep No-good park a great place to hang out, unaffiliated with cult violence and easily accessible for all.
Any day of the week there could be a popup party or open mike situation –
There’s a great Garbage jazz nite competition next Wednesday (I’m rooting for 6arms4brains1rhythm) and a Glow rave on Sunday (where we cover ourselves in bioluminescent ooze and that’s it – real good way to get close to someone)
If you want to get a little rougher, The Grafts are always a good bet.
I have a few friends who always go down to Graft territory on a first date, just to impress their new pal in the fighting pits. If you’re confident enough, you win a fight, you’ll get enough money to go back up above ground and head over to some adorable Crafter cafe to buy a meal.
If you have any date ideas within Sporyn City, let me know and I’ll review them!
Good luck living and good luck loving,
We’ve all been there, you know, thinking you’re the last person left alive on the planet.
My self-esteem sure took a hit when I stumbled out of the wastelands and onto the city of Sporyn. So maybe the revelation that you’re not alone anymore has been a hard drop for you, especially if you were really riding the high of being Earth’s lone survivor. Trust me, that euphoric wasteland confidence can still be acquired through other means.
Try joining a cult!
Fostering a sense of community is still important in our civilizationless universe, apparently, and picking the right cult is paramount to enjoying your time till the Earth is finally sucked into the sun. I’ve compiled a pro and con list for the most prominent cults in my neighborhood – hope it helps
- Nihilists : Easy to live if you don’t care how you die!
Relaxed anarchists. Terrible cooks. Nomadic scavengers of the city.
Pro: Best bands and craziest parties
Con: Worst commitment issues
Pro: Everyone shares anything they can afford
Con: Strictest dress codes
Pro: Fewest membership rules: Unlike some pretentious cults, the Nihilists are known for taking in anyone regardless of limb count, life expectancy, what percent of your body is metal, how often you talk about Game of Thrones unprompted, or age. As long as you uphold our nonchalant, secretly afraid of change attitude, you’re welcome in
Con: Most likely to abduct people in the name of having a good time
Pro: No real leader, so there’s no one bossing you around
- Crafter’s : Cult comforts
Soccer moms of the apocalypse. Hipster cafes sell body parts.
Pro: Filled with innovative inventors, scrapbooker’s, and small business owners
Con: Immensely judgmental of other’s outside their cult, will impose any opinion they have on any subject as the final word
Pro: Mostly likely to fabricate a new economy
Con: Most likely to fabricate a new economy
Pro: Tight-knit community, although everyone has to live in the exact same area, and everyone has to stitch the cult sigil into their skin
Con: If you ask one of them on a date and they reject you, you must immediately fight to the death
Pro: Will teach children trade skills
- Grafts : Till there’s no humanity left
Bionic jerks. Cunning schemers. Fanboys of immortality.
Pro: Easily the most organized regime; strictest hierarchy and enforced chain of command
Con: Let’s be honest, pretty much everything about their personalities is a turn-off- a relationship with a can opener would be more emotionally fulfilling
They blame humans for the destruction of the planet (fair enough) and their glorious solution is surgically altering their bodies to become as un-human as possible; ripping off limbs to replace them with machinery, drinking tap water in hopes it’ll mutate their bodies and allow them to become immortal
Unfortunatly, they frequently get violent with the rest of us for not joining their cult of metal machoism, and have recently declared themselves city police – Sporyn’s finest
Pro: The world could re-end before they get anymore superior ideas
There are other groups populating this polluted city; The Accountants, the Admin of Tree’s and so forth. You’ll run into them all soon enough.
I like things how they are, maybe you’ll learn to like it too.
The toxic sludge scones are decadent, the kneecap panini is sublime, all the other food corresponds to adjectives I’ve forgotten as a good fifth of my frontal lobe is still melted inside my skull, (ramifications of the nuclear blasts- chill out it’s not contagious) but Rat Teeth Restaurant true success comes from its location.
The swankiest spot in my neighborhood is situated perfectly inside the massive sinkhole near Nihilist park. The sinkhole was formed when a gas pipe ruptured underneath the street; providing an opportunistic moment for entrepreneurship, using the gas to heat the cavern and to cook the food. And let me tell you – I am SO ready to buy cooked food again.
There’s communal cement block tables, a fighting pit in the corner, and most notably a a retractable roof to protect you from Wednesday’s sulfuric showers. The roof is a thatch of old powerlines and live vines that get rolled back at night. A true innovation in Apoca-architecture.
The establishment is controlled by the Crafter Cult, who do charge Existence tax on all their hot beverages. Their signature move is grinding up rat teeth to use as flour, which was another brilliant move on their part. This in itself will provide great employment opportunities for anyone who wants to get ahead of the game collecting rat teeth.
I will be reviewing the restaurant in greater detail later – after I gather a bundle of mold aspergillus for Crafter bartering.
The Accountants are unavoidable, yet ignorable enough that I continue my life without taking one of theirs every time I see them heading to ‘work.’ Toothless sneers, unseeing eyes and snide remarks belong to an extinct social standing; they were important before the apocalypse, while the rest of us accepted oblivion’s new, tax bracketless structure, they salvaged their importance, and nothing else.
The shreds of nylon clinging to Brenda’s leg have nearly fused to her skin. A bobby pin or two holds her blood matted hair in a bun like shape. Phil, with his tattered tie still choking his neck, shoes long rotted away. Craig’s hand has lost three fingers to the mutant rats he doesn’t bother fighting off, infection will claim the entire arm in three weeks or less. (At least it better- I’ve bet two cans of squirrel meat on the outcome)
But none of this concerns them.
Their brains stopped the day the apocalypse started.
They reside on slabs of concrete that once held skyscrapers I would’ve been denied entrance too, providing conceded commentary on the state of our city now that it’s run by goons and no-good punks.
Sometimes I watch them, waiting for a synapse to snap and their heads to clear and how they’d look up in astonishment, free from the confines of a life that no longer exists.
The Accountants never do.
Brenda shows Phil a radioactive pebble and Phil mutters about the inflation of synergistic platforms; Craig mentions the harnessing of distributed functionalities; Brenda declares the monetizability of added-value markets is a priority.
She puts the radioactive pebble down and picks up the one in the pile, restarting the cycle.