The Account of a Lifetime

January 11, 2014

Demon the Fifth: If you’ll let me be Eleftheria

Though my name is strictly Francis (coupled to my middle name, Thomas, my chosen-by-myself confirmation name, George, and my family names, Loch and O’Hanlon), I’ve been known all my life ‘out there in the real world’ by one name alone: Frank.

Sure, there’s sometimes variations on it, Frankie, most usually, but Frank is where it’s usually centred for me. (Xisor, on the otherhand, is fairly well known and persistent in online use. Though for a while there I was also meeting people who’d only known me online via the conversation “Are you ‘Frank’ from TheSinner?”, which amused me a lot. Apparently I speak exactly like I write.)

Anyhow, the point here is Frank. The phrases you’ll know, ‘Frankly,…’ and ‘If you’ll let me be frank…’ typically come coupled to honesty. But it’s not really honesty that the word and name resonates with, for me. Rather: free.

I understand that derives from the medieval Latin francus, being ‘free’ or perhaps ‘free from obligation’.

And that’s kinda what I wanted to discuss. It’s a concept that’s plagued me for a while, that’s always left me feeling a little isolated and a bit resentful, but nevertheless also empowered and whole. It’s a concept that stands up to inspection as its own thing, a blessing and a curse both. A demon, if you will; at least in the style of this series. I shall begin… (more…)


May 2, 2013

Happy Go Lucky

I am a happy-go-lucky scamp who’s actually much more bitter and unhappy than he ever really lets on, who gets easily annoyed by other people dragging their heels, especially friends (at length), when opportunity for something more really interesting awaits within easy reach. Wondering what to do with myself has never really gone away. Hence…?

It’s a somewhat melodramatic statement, but in conversation sometimes outbursts like that do get ejected into the midst of the discussion.

Some might say I have a problem. Just one?


It’s not exactly terrifically poignant, but the sentiment is still there. This last few weeks, perhaps this last two months, have been a markedly bright spot for me. And I’m on the cusp of going onto something else – better, worse – who knows?

It began with the trip to London, then the stag-do in Newcastle, then the escapades on Shetland, then some hi-jinx in Edinburgh. And now, back to Stirling… for what? To where? I think it’ll be nice to go through each in detail.

In the meantime, my objective is to more fruitfully use the time I’m otherwise inclined to squander. The days are long, but meaningful activity is sparse on the ground. To whit, I think I shall just fill out this form and seek out gainful time-wasting. I volunteer for this mission, you might say.

August 27, 2012

Sceptic, Cynic, Stoic: Atheism+

I’ve been away this last week. I had some little opportunities to do some travelling and hobnobbing, so I seized them.

In the middle of the last week, I took the opportunity to spend a day out with many ol’ friends in Edinburgh. We dallied at the festival, perused some shows, drank coffee & tea, visited bookshops and all that jazz. Oh, we laughed. How we laughed!

This weekend, I was treated to an excursion to Glasgow to visit the big ‘Collectormania‘ event. There were hi-jinx and escapades and so forth, but largely it was an extremely enjoyable time to just geek out. That is: indulge in geekery, chat writing, chat TV, chat sci-fi and fantasy, to speculate and remember, to indulge and be inspired. It was an extremely enjoyable weekend!

However, perhaps the most endearing outlook of the entire weekend (excepting the acquisition of some lovely new [err, old] Star Trek books, including a long-desired copy of Robinson’s A Stitch In Time) was a brief conversation with an old friend which eventually hit towards the topic of Atheism+ which is broadly dealt with in Jen McCreight’s BlagHag blog posts ( Conception, Definition, Clarification 1, Declaration, Clarification 2, Greta’s Nuances). Suffice to say, it’s enlightening. Perhaps a tad more than that. It bears something of a story. Gather round, sit down, get comfortable. Everyone has tea? I shall begin…


March 22, 2012

Of Dolmen Gates & Dragons

Filed under: Reflections,Visions of the future,Writing — xisor @ 7:46 pm

Not only is that the theory, I’m going to start believing it as fact. Mainly because I like it, but also because I just re-read a few choice segments from Graham McNeill‘s Mechanicum on my newly patented Lovecrafternoon.

That is:

This was no cavern. Was this entire space, the walls and floor, the air and every molecule within it, part of some vast intelligence, a being or construct of ancient malice and phenomenal, primeval power? Such a thing had no name; for what use would a being that had brought entire civilisations into existence and then snuffed them out on a whim have of a name? it had been abroad in the galaxy millions of years before humanity had been a breath in the creator’s mouth, had drunk the hearts of stars and been worshipped as a god in a thousand galaxies.

It was everywhere and nowhere at once. All powerful and trapped at the same time.
– Page 352/353, Mechanicum.


“I understand,” Dalia told Semyon. “The Dragon… I don’t know what it is, but I know where it is.”

“Do you?” asked Semyon. “Tell me.”

“This cavern… everything in it. This is it. Or at least a sliver of it.”

Semyon nodded. “A Tomb and prison all in one.”


Semyon beckoned her over to the lectern and opened the book. “Look. Know.
– Page 354, Mechanicum.

Simply put, I’m quite convinced of a few things now in me noggin’. (more…)

January 7, 2012

Our Destiny Is In The Stars

“Our lives are important — at least to us — and as we see, so we learn… Our destiny is in the stars, so let’s go and search for it.”
– The (First) Doctor

It’s a new year and a new dawn. And all that jazz. I’m a slow reader, I wonder if it’s the eye-muscles being silly buggers. I’d been warned they’re weak, it’d be bloody annoying if my hands fall off.


October 19, 2011

Call of C’tan

Filed under: Cogitations,Visions of the future — xisor @ 9:26 pm

In discussion with LordLucan there, I noticed a good ‘description’ of my feeling on matters new-Necronomical.

I suggested that Andy Chamber’s Deus Ex Mechanicus fits neatly with the new ‘shards’ C’tan concept. Or rather, DEM informs the new shard concept in a pretty interesting way, almost as much as it would if it were republished verbatim as if it were written wholly for the new lore.

We, nowadays, have a ‘Shard’ of the Deceiver, rather than the Deceiver itself. LL notes he still thinks he runs the place. I suggest: The Deceiver’s ‘prolific’ magnificence that it claims could be backwards-interpreted as some sense of dispersed self-awareness; knowledge of what other, perhaps non-battlefield, shards are up to. And even if not, why make such claims? Because even as a minuscule shard having escaped some shackles, he’s still the Deceiver, that’s why. And strictly its true. Even if he’s a shard-slave, he can still think he *should* be the master, and thus lie about it.


September 28, 2011

The Many Circles

Filed under: Reflections,Visions of the future — xisor @ 2:28 am

I find myself often acting like a very lonely person. It’s perhaps unsurprising that I often feel extremely lonely. For a very long time, perhaps all my life, I’ve cherished that loneliness.

I’ve often remarked, when pushed on it, that I enjoy the loneliness. The solitude is certainly something I’ve enjoyed. One of the best holidays of my life, the trip to Prague in 2006, is ‘the best’ in spite of the actual quality of the holiday. It highlighted the trouble of the relationship I was in at the time, even though I was arguably too blind (or too deluded) to see it. That blindness certainly accounts for its end; I’d like to consider myself a misanthrope of a sociopath, but I think the truth is somewhat less appealing than that.

A Wonderful City

I really enjoyed Prague!

No, the trip to Prague was excellent. I loved that city. Really, I can’t think of a place I really felt more…comfortable. Perhaps it’s something to do with being in tears on a stone cold bathroom floor that melds ones’ ‘soul’ to a place, I assume that’s what happens in Soul Binding, tears before the Golden Throne. But I digress. Prague was excellent. Soup in breads, drinking bars dry of absinthe, wonderful city steeped in history. It really felt like a wonderful place. It also highlighted that I don’t treat my friends very well. Or something like that, the happiest day was when I got frustrated with them all and resolved to wander off, alone. It was excellent, I found some marvellous hilltop gardens and had a good old, proper explore without having to account for why I’m going one way rather than the other. (more…)

July 12, 2011

A Conclave of Elder Things

Filed under: Visions of the future — xisor @ 1:37 am

The vast tetrahedral fortress ploughed the gas-filled void. Some light years distant, in the heart of the stellar remnant, the soon-fusing cores of a dozen proto-stars were coalescing. Shockwaves and pressure-fronts cascaded around the ship. Less than a speck in the grand dance of the universe, it nevertheless was an eternal fulcrum, an anvil of creation and repository of life in a near barren expanse of the world.

The biconal seminary hosted a collection of beings. Two sat roughly opposed on silent, motionless thrones of stone, pulsing eathly energies from within their hieroglyph and geometrically adorned exteriors. Around them clustered coteries of beings, members of younger races, their mentors, the scriveners and bio-technicians who commanded the flow of energies throughout the vessel, a great garden of flora and fungi covered the available surfaces. Several of the delegate-elders were near-catatonic in their contemplations of the birthing-clouds extending for dozens of light years from the ship in all directions, their mental exertions brushing lightly against the thoughts of others, mere eddies and whorls in the seminary’s discourse.

September 3, 2010

The Only Thing He Ever Failed

It might be news to some of you, but it certainly hasn’t sunk in for me. In one week(ish) I’ll be embarking upon the latest of my adventures. I’ll first set forth from St Andrews and the venture happily ‘back’ to Stirling, albeit this time not as a drifter.

Well, not quite.

The Failure of CS

The thing is, way back in high school, roughly eight years ago, I suppose, I sat Higher Computing. I was the only pupil in a good, 20-strong class to get an A. But there was a black mark. I got 11/20 on the AI NAB, the passmark was 12. I felt the marking scheme wasa wrong as a question gave two answers which were (IMO at the time and still to this day) are both plausible (but one, which I picked, is surely more correct than another).

In any case, I failed and I had to resit. I was a good programmer though, so I hope to complete an MSc in IT with an extracurricular avidity for AI. Who knows, could this be a rematch?

I’m quite exhilerated, in all honesty.

In other news

Really need to reconnect with folks on Sanity Lost, feel like I’ve betrayed them by being preoccupied. Baron, I-D, if you catch this are you interested in 4pm GMT onwards semiregular MSN Dark Heresy runs? Got a nice group running (as per other blog entries!), rather fun.

Also got a fair bit of reading done. Not as much as I’d like, but at least some. Too many anthologies to qualify as novels, I’m sure!

I also found £60 I’d forgotten about last night. I’m rich (ish)!

Now, lunch I think…

November 30, 2009


Filed under: Cogitations,Reflections,Visions of the future — xisor @ 12:04 pm

It’s been a long time in coming, but I’ve finally left the Northern Hemisphere properly and arrived in New Zealand.

I must confess that my precise reason for being here is somewhat mysterious, even to myself. I’d intended to work until graduation and then come across here for a few months ‘to doss about’ until October-y time at which point I’d hoped I’d have some semblance of ‘the rest of my life’ sorted.

This plan did not unfold, it unravelled.


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