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I'm the co-host of THIS IS ROCK 'N' ROLL RADIO with Dana & Carl (Sunday nights, 9 to Midnight Eastern, www.westcottradio.org).  As a freelance writer, I contributed to Goldmine magazine from 1986-2006, wrote liner notes for Rhino Records' compilation CD Poptopia!  Power Pop Classics Of The '90s, and for releases by The Flashcubes, The Finkers, Screen Test, 1.4.5., and Jack "Penetrator" Lipton.  I contributed to the books Bubblegum Music Is The Naked Truth, Shake Some Action, Lost In The Grooves, and MusicHound Rock, and to DISCoveries, Amazing Heroes, The Comics Buyer's Guide, Yeah Yeah Yeah, Comics Collector, The Buffalo News, and The Syracuse New Times.  I also wrote the liner notes for the four THIS IS ROCK 'N' ROLL RADIO compilation CDs, because, well, who could stop me?  My standing offer to write liner notes for a Bay City Rollers compilation has remained criminally ignored.  Still intend to write and sell a Batman story someday.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

WHAT IF? SO WHAT? The 1979 Fantasy And Science Fiction Journal, Parts 10 and 11

Continuing entries from the journal I kept for Dr. Calvin Rich's Fantasy And Science Fiction class as a senior at Brockport in the Fall of 1979.

# 10: 10/17/79

What if parallel worlds collided? Imagine the two opposite extremes of alternate universes--the universe never-to-be-born, and the universe never-to-live-again--being drawn magnetically together, just as all opposites attract. All realities in between--realities including the past, present, future, possible, impossible, imagined, experienced--would then be crushed together, intruding upon each other's spacial dimension. Jesse James could stand face-to-face with The Village People in the midst of World War VI. Hansel and Gretel might have a shoot-out with the P.L.O. A Kennedy-Carter debate might be suddenly interrupted by Dr. Frank N. Furter (of The Rocky Horror Picture Show), swishing and singing, "Pleased to meet you...!"

As the magnetic attraction increases and the pressure of compression grows, all realities will eventually meet, mingle, and be crushed together. Finally, the two opposites will join and destroy each other, leaving only emptiness, a non-universe, a black hole in space, assuring that nothing can ever be again.

DR. RICH'S COMMENT: Must this necessarily follow?

# 11: 10/21/1979

I'm feeling a trifle sentimental today; Brenda and I began dating each other exactly one year ago, so it's only fitting that I should set down some sort of romantic (in the popular sense) fantasy....

Imagine that a man and a woman are in love, deeply in love. But, like Romeo and Juliet, their families and societies are violently opposed to any union of the two, and keep the couple separated. No contact between them is allowed. Their very love itself is forbidden. What, then, are two young, star-crossed lovers to do?

Assuming that their love is strong, it should then, theoretically, be more than equal to any obstacles men may place in its path. Thus, the lovers' minds and consciousnesses become acutely attuned to one another; although they may be separated by miles and men, their souls--the essential inner spirit which is part of all hnau--may remain forever intertwined. The mental yearning for each other may overcome the restrictions of their corporeal forms, as the lovers re-unite and merge forever in the "psychic stratosphere" (to borrow a phrase from the pop group Blondie). Forceful separation is impossible; as long as love remains strong, the lovers remain psychically linked.

The concept here is of love--an abstract, intangible thing--as a more concrete, magical wonder capable of transcending all opposition, of moving worlds and altering the decrees of fate and history; love as an irresistible force against which there can be no immovable object.

(Happy Anniversary, Brenda)

DR. RICH'S COMMENT: You will delight in John Donne!

2017 POSTSCRIPT: Awwwww...! But let's start with the first entry.

The collision of parallel worlds, like all of my previous entries about parallel worlds, is heavily influenced by DC Comics' parallel universe stories of Earth-One, Earth-Two, Earth-Three, Earth-X, Earth-S (for Shazam), et al. This particular entry's mingling of realities, presages DC's mid '80s Crisis On Infinite Earths, but it wasn't all that different from images seen in the pages of Justice League Of America, and in the one hundredth issue of DC's Showcase. I daresay DC never had Frank N. Furter interrupt a political debate, though. I like the mashups I chose to represent this concept.

The second entry was written by a young man in love. In our first year as a couple, Brenda and I had already faced some complications and turbulence. Almost 40 years later, we still standin'. It's not quite true that love conquers all, but I wouldn't advise placing a bet against it.

WHEN WHAT IF? SO WHAT? RETURNS: It's just a jump to the left.

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