Trans-Real News – Episode 20: Interviews

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In which we get to know our news crew a little better.

An Interview with Toby (0’36”)

Why don’t you start by giving us your name and tell us what you do here? I’m Toby Damt. I’m the anchorman. And behind the scenes I’m also the executive producer.

How did you find out about reality beyond Earth? Hanging out with the weird guy in my journalism classes at University. Invited me to try a ritual… and I had an anthropological paper to do. I figured writing about a modern day occultist might be worth Extra Credit. I took some Plutonian Pills and ended up wandering around outside of time, the woke up five minutes later

How did that translate into creating a news program for other psychonauts? I was serious about journalism. Hunter S. Thompson and Ruben Salazar had been heroes of mine for how they brought powerful people into account… for different reasons. And John Stossel, too, in an odd kind of way. I believe in the power of journalism… and here is this whole new world that nobody was talking about, and I gethered a lot of people got hurt over.

So I started my own news blog and connected with a bunch of occult groups.

Then the Psychic War happened, and we needed real coverage. I founded the Trans-Real news Network to keep people posted, and to a degree, to help people fighting for the little guy safe.

Eventually I stumbled into some funding, and some like-minded souls, and we built a media company out of it. I stuck to the news, but some of the reporters, teachers, and mystics who I had come to rely on moved on to create things like Psionics Today, Matrix-Watch, and the Time Travel Journal.

Now it is way bigger than me with book publishing and the like.

What do you do in your off time: Off time? I don’t have much of that. I am always hedging cats and putting out fires. I spend some time at the shooting range. I fly radio-controlled aircraft… although in a way both of those are news related. I have a cactus garden. I like old black and white movies.

What’s your favourite movie: I am tended to say “The Network” or “The Paper” but both would be a lie, even though I love them. “Twelve Angry Men” might be closer to the truth.

Does the Universe still have rules: Of course it does. They are more flexible than we thought. But there is still right and wrong, good and evil, the basic rules of the human mind. I suspect that things like causality are still running the show… there are just more steps in between.

An Interview With Walter and Warren Haversquirrel (3’52”)

Why don’t you start by telling us who you are? [Walter] I’m Walter Haversquirrel and this is my brother Warren. We’re in charge of gathering and organizing the data that we use to make forecasts about strange timespace and reality events around the globe. I then present them inour broadcast. Warren here handles our microphones and mixing boards.

How did you find out about reality beyond Earth? [Walter] My brother and I were both in school together. Warren was taking physics, and I was taking philosophy. At one point while we were both reading a lot of lovecraft and I was getting really interested in Teleology at the same time Warren was studying Quantum Mechanics we both started looking for ways we could test whether reality really is a mutable perceptual frame. We started devising tests and machines… and we just sort of… blundered into it.

What do you make of all the mystics and occultists who reached it by other means? [Walter] It was really surprising at first. Definitely not our kind of crowd. Although Warren got a long great with a coven of local Wiccans…

[Warren] Shh… keep it PG.

[Walter] Anyway, it actually helped us design the timespace and reality monitoring systems that we invented later on down the road, because it forced us to change how we perceived, well, perception.

How Do You Forecast the Weird Time, Space, and Reality Events for your forecast? [Walter] A supercomputer that Warren and I invented that collects information from around the globe by way of automated monitoring systems.

[Warren] It is unbelievably hard to maintain it all.

[Walter] Yes. And I’m afraid the system takes up a very impressive chunk of the entire TRNN budget these days. Good thing that it has become so useful over the last few years.

Now-a-days You guys are as much media people as scientists. Warren here even maintains our microphones and control boards. Walter is borrowing a lot of how he presents things from TV weathermen. Does this feel like a step down for you two? [Walter] Oh no, not at all! Science is ultimately the art of informing people about their world. Warren and I publish every day with wild new findings. Doing it as a part of a news cast saves me a lot of time. I ultimately turn my notes into papers we publish in more traditional scientific journals…

What Do You Do in Your Off Time? [Walter] Warren and I play a lot of pool. He’s a wizard at the pool table. I make a little extra money writing smartphone apps just for fun. Adventure games,mostly.

Does the Universe still have rules? [Walter] Warren had better answer this one.

[Warren] Of course it does! Most of the rules you are used to: time, space, gravity… they are all preconditions for the mind to even apprehend reality… maybe even make reality. Irreality is just another force that is related to consciousness itself. Nothing I have seen since the breakdown has ever contradicted the assumptions of McKenna and Leary’s  theories of Consciousness and the assumptions made by quantum mechanics. Its just that the Newtonian laws can sometimes be up for temporary negotiation when consciousness if interrupted by irreality.

[Walter] But this gets technical fast. Let’s just say that the mind makes reality, and the mind has limits before it stops working. So reality can be bent by warping the mind. But it can never be broken.

[Warren] I like that one. Let’s write it down!

An Interview with Yaron (7’41”)

[Klie Maxwell] Why don’t you tell us who you are? My name is Yaron Ioron. I’m the last investigative journalist left from the original Trans-Real News crew. In fact, I am the last guy other than Toby who comes from more of a news media instead of an occult, mystical, or weird science one.

How did you find out about reality beyond Earth: I was actually doing a piece on a series of weird crimes: kids doing unsettling stuff in graveyards, head shops being robbed, bizarre graffiti that was putting a small town into a Satanic Panic. Trying to play the cult angle. Heaven’s Gate was still on a lot of minds back then, and people were starting to worry about that really big Hollywood Cult.

Anyway, I tracked down the people doing it and found they weren’t kids at all, but grown-ass adults doing weird occult stuff. I told them who I was and asked for an interview. Might have been a pretty cool angle. You know what the cops are saying vs. what anonymous occult vandals were saying… but then, well, they showed me some stuff that nearly broke my brain.

It cost me my career, because I tried writing about it in a respectable paper. A couple of years later, I was working on a book on the occult that probably never would have been published when Toby approached me. The rest is history.

What Do You Do in Your Off Time: The most mundane, grounding thing I can: I am part of a bowling league. And a darts league. And I have a bar trivia game team. A different game or practice almost every day. I also myself as a connoisseur of scotch whisky.

How good a bowler are you? I was expecting you to ask a booze question Klie.

[Klie] I know, that’s why I asked about bowling. Keep you on your toes, darling.

[Yaron] Terrible, really. But I keep showing up and I keep improving by millimeters at a time. Which is why I don’t get kicked from the team.

Does the Universe still have rules? I don’t know anymore. I honestly don’t think I understand them. It’s why I am asking the question to everyone else. It is scary, you know. Especially as it is getting harder and harder to ignore it all. Pretty soon something is going to happen that will wake everyone up.

Do you wish you could rejoin the normies? Nah, You can’t go back. Ignorance isn’t bliss, it is a stupor that makes you easy prey.

An Interview With Klie (10’45”)

Tell me who you are and what you do here? Klie Maxwell, the “Spirit Guide,” I like to say. I do travel advisories for I tell people about sights, and dangers they might encounter while traveling, especially if I can keep them up-to-date and interesting.

How did you find out about reality beyond Earth? Its been so long, I can hardly remember. Not the usual “I was interested in the Occult and played around with the Gates of Sleep” nonsense you usually hear from men my age. Or the “I became a feminist and joined a Wiccan coven in hopes of getting girls to like me,” story that is also frequent. I think I always knew. I never bought the lies. They’re like the fairy stories they tell you as a kid, darling. Meant to keep you from wandering too far from mommy and daddy. I figured if they were trying to keep me out of the woods, there must be something fun in there. The same with heavy metal, comic books, hallucinogens… always lying to keep you in a safe box. Why shouldn’t the globe be any different? I guess I am a contrarian. Putt a boundary up, I will try to cross it. Give me a universal rule, I will at least try to bend it.

You must have been a handful when you were a kid? I try to be a handful now, darling. I think of life as a dashing and bold adventure. There is too much to see and do to settle down. Hell, I only come into the studio every eight or nine episodes, except recently. Better to transmit them so I can keep roaming.

But I am not keen on hurting people. Good fun is had with people. Not at their expense.

You rarely talk about the past. I’ve been trying to learn more about the crew here, and you are the hardest guy to… “Pin down?” Not at all.

[Yaron] Innuendo aside.

[Klie] But innuendo is so fun… but if you must know… I don’t like to talk about it, because my blatant disregard for the laws of god and man has taken me to some dangerous and painful places. I like to leave the past in the past.

What Do You Do in Your Off Time? It’s all off time! Or maybe its all On Time. I am a full-time adventurer. A seeker of wonders and pleasure and all of that. It so happens that I have mistakes I can warn people about, and wonders I can tell them about based on experience. So I have something to share, and Toby was kind enough to give me somewhere to share it.

There are so many parties, fun times, and people to meet.

If I have one hobby that keeps me orbiting around certain people, it is fantasy role-playing games. An artifact from my contrarian childhood that I just can’t give up, I suppose.

Does the Universe still have rules? What a strange question. The rules have always been there, and they have never changed. We just don’t understand them very well and keep making bad models, darling. We will get them right eventually.

An Interview with Torg (14’01”)

[Torg] Are you sure Yaron would want me in his documentary.

[Klie] You are a part of the story now, darling. He will thank me later. But I suppose benign from the distant future a lot of his standard questions will be silly.

When are you from? I am from a possible 32nd century where man has finally again become master of this Earth after countless disasters with Magic and Chaos. We have fallen and risen from stone age to winders beyond modern perception three times in the span between now and then.

And why does the horde keep rampaging across the Enlightenment and Modernity? This was the time when technology was its most advanced, but men were at their worst. The combination made it easy for them to plunge into dark times. We are trying to harden the men of this era so that when the next era comes, they will be more aware. The suffering we cause today may be nothing compared to the suffering Man might endure tomorrow.

That sounds very bleak. Not at all! It is a great hope! I was born in one possible future. Where we prune the tree of time today new, better branches may yet grow, Perhaps we can make a future where my family needn’t be the warriors needs has made us.

Why did you become a part of Trans-Real News? The contempt for journalists runs strong in my people. In the 21st century they went from being truth-tellers to being thought-engineers, and few noticed. But the inability to tell reality from fantasy is one of the greatest weaknesses of this era. And that is the true cause of the Slime, which is one of the greatest calamities that has echoed through the millennium between us.

But there are still truth-tellers out there. And Yaron was one of them. My blind bias humiliated the horde, and set back out shaping of the Tree. I was cast from the Horde for it until I balanced my Cha and lifted some truth-tellers up.

Balanced your what now? That is no matter, and a bit taboo to speak of. Heed not such details. Know that I must become a true journalist like the one I had slain, to tell the truth as he did that I might make amends and set time right before I am to be admitted. Even then my rank as Master must be re-earned.

What Do You Do in Your Off Time? I compose ballads of my greatest ancestors. But I do not have my zither, so I shall not perform them until my Cha is balanced.

Does the Universe still have rules: Hahahaha! Of course it has. You primitives just badly misapprehended them. Does the universe have rules? Hahahahah!

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