Let's have a look at Agfa CT Precisa 100, a cheap slide film that seems to be repackaged Fuji Provia. But first I have to talk about Zalgo. I've tried to put this off but sometimes I can't stop the words. I say Zalgo. Zalgo is just a word. A word we use to label the horror. He doesn't have a name; he is not a creature in the conventional sense. There is no him, or her, there is simply the force we call Zalgo. The horror comes not from his actions, which are imperceptible on a human timescale, the horror comes from his being, and from his indifference to us.
Most people cross-process Precisa. That won't save them. I didn't cross-process it. Look what happened to me.
What keeps me awake at night? Horror comes in many forms. There is the inevitability of death. The vastness of the universe. The knowledge that the universe will carry on regardless of our passing. That baby in China who had to be cut out of a toilet, drowning with his face jammed into shit. Imagine his little baby skull splitting open. Little shit-for-brains. And there are quasars.
Mine was cheap because it expired in 2009. Straight from the scanner it came out blue, but Photoshop fixed that. Nonetheless there are some things that Photoshop cannot fix. Some things cannot be fixed.
I've written about quasars before. They're immense protogalaxies that existed in the distant past. The light they generated took billions of years to reach us, which is good because if a quasar approached within a few dozen light years of Earth it would kill us. It would kill us and sterilise the Earth forever. Our solar system is a tiny oasis of life in a universe of horror.
Nine weeks later the GDR burst. Forty years down the drain.
There's a gif going round the internet. Saturn flies past the Earth, close enough for the Earth to pass through its rings. It's terrifying; at the closest approach Saturn fills up the sky, like a wall. But Saturn is just a planet, not even the largest planet in the solar system. Quasars are the size of galaxies and at their core lurk supermassive black holes. The largest of these black holes is almost fifty times the diameter of the solar system, and its quasar emits twenty-five-thousand times as much light as the entire Milky Way galaxy. Just numbers beyond human understanding, beyond the capacity of our tiny minds to visualise. Our tiny minds programmed to squeeze breasts and penetrate cunts and spit out a new generation for the bonfire. The early universe was an unimaginably hostile environment, no place for human beings. That was the universe God created. Zalgo's universe.
Berlin's relatively new Hauptbahnhof station / shopping mall. A hundred years from now the sleepers will send their drones; then silence.
God did not create the universe in our image. He created supermassive black holes and subatomic particles; his universe is a framework of energetic interactions in which human beings are a side-effect, a by-product of liquid water. We are children screaming for attention in a city of the dead. We live in the hope that Taylor Swift might retweet one of our utterances, so that our lives will have meaning, but Zalgo does not follow us on Twitter. He does not participate in social media. He is an affront to our sense of self.
The jumpers of 9/11 could see the end. They chose a few seconds of clear air and freedom in exchange for the certainty of death. They could see the end because it filled up their sky, like a wall. Death stood beside them tapping his watch. We are all trapped inside a shell that will kill us, but we choose not to see the end. We distract ourselves with trivialities, doomed men screaming to blot out the horror. We choose to pretend that there is no end, as if the power of our minds could move galaxies. When we are gone Zalgo will continue, as if we had never been.
b̶̢́͢͏̲̯̮͖̻͕͓̦̩͓̱̰̹̙a҉͍͇̞̪̣͉̮͚̭̫͖̹̫̮̠͓ͅc̥̰̲̟̗̯̮̖̘͎͕͚̺̼͖͙̩̻̩͝͝k̸͏̧͚̫̪̯̤̹̥͕̦̰̟̠͓͞͠d̶͉̱̹̼͉͕̲͚͙͍̭͙̻̫͉̹́͢͜r̶̛̖̪̪̬̞͇̪͙̙̤̩̀̕͞ͅͅo̷̵̫̝̤͙̮̹̫̝̭̳̜͇̪̪p̸̷̮͎͎͖͓̪̘̟͎͈͖̮͟͜͝ ̢͢҉̮͎͈͕̕o̶̥̟̘̳͔͓̺̣̲͘f̼̝͓͕͉̹̠͔̙̤̰̦̟̞͍̗͡͝ ̛͇̼͖̫̕̕t̴̶̩̝͉̲̰́͢͠h͏͏̸͇͙̠̜͞e̷̢̞̦̺̪̯̯̳̲̦̦̬̝̣͉̗̳̬̞͞ ̷̸̢̻̻̰̝̰͍͉̬͕͍̲̣̼͞u̕̕͝͠҉̝̞̣͙̙̞͈͎ǹ͓̥̜̪͎̜͈̟̱̳̦͍̩͓̞̪̭̝͈͟i̴̢̲̟̬̹͈͎͔̰̞̠̼̰͈̮͉̗̰͎v̷̡͚̘̤̲͚͉͕͚̤̪̖̘̹͘͜͟e͟҉̧̟͚̫̻͇͇͓͍̲̱͈̟̳̗͘͢ͅr҉̡͈̱̼͚̣̰̟͚ś̵̸̜͈͓͎̮̗́ͅe͠҉̼͇̩̜̗̬̩͎̯͔̝̟̻͇̜̳̭̫͙
If we could observe the universe with eyes that see forever, we would see him. A vastness behind the stars. Our race will be gone in a blink of his eye. We will never know if he saw us, and that is the horror of Zalgo. He waits behind the wall, but not for us.
"Not this night."