Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Reflections on the Modern World

I have to say, worship is a lot easier nowadays than it used to be. I mean, if you wanted to learn more about the Great Old Ones in the old days, you had to go digging through moldering copies of ancient tomes, or study with sinister men in foreign ports, or seek out forgotten tribes in the dark corners of the world. If you were lucky, you’d receive some sort of nightmare vision, and write a scroll of your own – if you survived, of course.

Nowadays, it’s all in the database: indexed, cross-referenced, and available in easy-to-print pdf format. Not just every forbidden book and forgotten parchment, but even the different translations. Audio and video interviews with the last of the Worms of the Earth, or that tribe in the Amazon, or the centuries-old hermit who lives on the edge of the Plateau of Leng: they’re all in there. Transcripts are available at the click of a mouse.

That’s not all, either. Ever had to kidnap someone by throwing them across the back of a horse? My father did that. Nowadays, he swears by the simple utility of a van or SUV. All but the most remote locations can be reached by airplane, Jeep, or motorcycle if the configuration of the stars requires it.

And the drugs! In my grandfather’s day, they mostly used alcohol. Maybe laudanum, or curare, or ether – if they could get it. Nowadays, you can get drugs for anything – helping people remember, making them forget, fixing them up or breaking them down. The stuff is so useful, it’s almost a shame that the Ancients are going to destroy it all when they finally rise.

You know what I really like, though? The clothing. In the old days, it was all heavy, embroidered robes or dancing naked in the moonlight – and catching pneumonia, like as not. I still remember my grandmother scrubbing and scrubbing to get the blood and offal out of grandpa’s robe. Nowadays, most ceremonies are business casual – and for the rare few that require something more… specialized… we have stain-resistant fabrics.

Sure, some of the Elders grump about it – want everything done the same as it was when they were young. And I guess there was a certain style to the old ways. But really, it’s so much more convenient these days… I doubt even the Elders really want to go back.

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