1. raven says

    Well, it does fit in with the current Zeitgeist.
    Everything looks like a post-dystopian wasteland or is heading that way.

    FYI, “Zeitgeist is defined as the spirit of a generation or a period of time.”
    I grew up in the era of peace, love, and understanding (if you ignore the Vietnam war.)
    That era was idealistic more than the reality but at least we could be idealistic.

  2. blf says

    @3, “Everything looks like a post-dystopian wasteland or is heading that way.”

    Nah, that’s just the London Underground (the Tube), c.1968 (see @2).

  3. PaulBC says

    I thought you were the mad scientist, not his Igor.*

    *To be clear, every Igor I’ve met (and there’ve been a few in tech and in biotech) not only lack a hunchback and limp, but are on average rather handsome, extremely intelligent, and quite articulate (a little arrogance rolled into it though).

  4. PaulBC says

    This would make a great cover for a Philip K Dick novel. Doesn’t matter which one, just make it an Ace Book from the 1960s.

    You even look a little like PKD.

  5. PaulBC says

    Phrenotopian@7 I like the middle one. Like Carl Sagan said, we are all star stuff.

    Now I need to drop acid and see the actual star stuff of my being. (Hey, maybe Jordan Peterson was right after all.)

  6. StevoR says

    Could be worse, could be me.

    Also echoes of the Martians in the War of the Worlds in the 2019 British TV incarnation of that classic story see :

    & this brief youtube footage here at the 3 min 19 secs mark of the various Martians compared plus this WARNING horror (& death) Martian feeding scene here as well.

    Of course, raising questions of how they then supposedly fly and build spacecraft etc.. but yeah..

    (Apparently those weird extendable beak-e-spears things can become “hands” too in off-screen I gather. Still, again, yeah. Hard to buy.)

  7. wzrd1 says

    Huh, nice to meet you, star stuff. I’ve previously met Star Lord as well. Allow me to introduce myself, I’m starshit, cousin to starfart, the planetary nebula. ;)
    Just watch out for stargulp, he’s my uncle and is a supermassive black hole, he really can sneak up on you…

  8. René says

    As much as I admire PZ’s (his, your) stance on social justice, I hate his/your in-crowd fad for incredibly stupid American superhero, horror, violence that seems to be a shibboleth among pharyngulites.

  9. PaulBC says

    This is very cool, to be totally honest and non-snarky for a second. The images are consistently evocative of the descriptions I give. Not quite to the point where I’d pay, but I can imagine having an art wall in an office hooked up to Siri or equivalent. You’d give it a phrase and change the art. At least if you like surrealism, you won’t run out.

    This would do a better job with science fiction cover art than some of the paperback covers from the 1960s. Just give it the title and see what it does with it. (ok, that was a little snarky but I mean it).

  10. birgerjohansson says

    Rene @ 13
    We could have an image from a film version of Wuthering Heights, but in that case I insist there must be a honey badger added to the scene. Honey badgers improve everything.

  11. Tethys says

    I can’t find any superheroes or violence in these comments, or anything approaching in-crowd stupid Americans?

    Several of those commenting aren’t even American, but obviously like comic book type stories and art. In other words, nerds.

    The artwork itself is rather dark and gloomy.
    Decay is not inappropriate for someone experiencing chronic back pain and the circus of nonsense known as medical care in America.
    Plus some spiders. It’s just a bit of dark humor.

  12. PaulBC says

    Tethys@17 Dark and gloomy? Not necessarily. I thought the algorithm came up with a “cosmically” exhuberant impression of the Philip K Dick title Galactic Pot Healer: True it has nothing to do with the novel, but it is galactic and might even involve the healing of a pot (which would have something to do with the novel).

    This is the actual original cover: looking very much like the weathered edition I found on my older brother’s bookshelf many years ago. It’s just possible that the cover is intended to suggest Glimmung’s temple, but honestly I can’t tell if the artist read even the title, let alone the book. So I rate this machine-human competition as 1-0 in favor of NightCafe.

  13. mcfrank0 says

    I am way too late in noticing the eight legged commonality of your interest in cephalopods and arachnids. The difference in symmetry only makes the comparison more interesting.

    Ssh! Don’t ruin it by listing the varying number of limbs among cephalopods. Allow me a false moment of insight this early Saturday morning. It’s going to be 106 today in Austin and I could use the “win”.

  14. Silentbob says

    I thought you’d been consumed by Evil Cat.

    @ 13 René

    Aw, you just discovered nerds, how cute.

  15. PaulBC says

    Great American Satan@21

    is that a waffle with a dildo baked into it and baggies of grey marijuana scattered around?

    I came to the same conclusion so I guess so. The dildo could generously be a sausage. There is also a tiny egg, perhaps stolen from a birds nest. My original picture included a waffle-like object that is really a homemade coaster. Its resemblance is what inspired my starting text. I wasn’t sure if I was the only one seeing the clumps of marijuana, but “breakfast of champions”. Some would agree I am sure.

  16. StevoR says

    Multiple interpretations.

    Double entrendres.

    Deliberate ambiguity.

    Language. Art. How do they work again?

    (Very well..)

    When is art? (Cite Nelson Goodman if memory serves.) Who decides what it says when they see it and know what they like?

  17. StevoR says

    @23. PaulBC : The dildo could generously be a sausage.

    Yes. Or an eggplant a.k.a,. aubergine. Or cigar.

    So many metaphors / possibilities / euphemisms .. Feel like having a hot dog now..

  18. PaulBC says

    StevoR@16 On the other hand, if I made some waffle batter, bought some pot, found a birds nest with a tiny white egg (which might be tough; they’re usually spotted, right?), got some kind of sausage and cooked it into a really badly munged waffle, set it all up just like the picture with a little glass of milk on the left, on some kind of faux leather textured couch cushion instead of a plate, photographed it, ate it for breakfast, smoked the pot, instagrammed the photo, declaring myself a champion, then all of a sudden the meaning would be concrete and unambiguous.

    I’ve invented a new art form!