MY JOB = URBAN FANTASY = TRAVEL ABROAD = I HAVE A SCHEME
Now, I’m no math genius, and won’t claim to be (although note that since we’ve just met I could have lied to you, but then again, we just met and that’s not the kind of guy I am; if you knew me, you wouldn’t have been so presumptive!), but I keep thinking back to high school and (nerd then and now) to the Transitive Property of Equality (if A = B and B = C, then A must = C), and I kept wondering: what can it do for me? My answer: just enough to justify one brilliant idea of mine.
You see, I just recently had the pleasure of joining the Pocket team as an editor, and I’ve been having a great time meeting new people, relearning new people’s names I’ve just met, getting a handle on/salivating over the urban fantasy lineup here, and trying to find the various offices for various meetings where we talk about various numbers, which, again, I’m no Picasso at. (Well, maybe I’m a Picasso at math, and a Sofia Kovalevskaya at art…. Hahahaha nerd joke; look her up.)
In any event, my new job has all been very peculiar and interesting and is a bit like entering a fictional world where magic and metropolis set the background for our handsome, articulate, super-awesome protagonist to have adventures in. Only the protag in question is me, the metropolis is my window facing The Rock at Rock(afeller) Center, and the magic has a less mystical name: My Assistant, a being with infinite patience and knowledge. Huh, sounds like an urban fantasy book, to me!
So, a rough approximation—and isn’t rough approximation what mathematics is really all about?—of this gives us the first part of our Transvestiteve Property: A (my job) = B (urban fantasy).
Now, let’s see about C, shall we? Very shortly here, I am headed off to Thailand and India for a wondrous vacation. Am I nervous about getting around in a land where I won’t recognize the language symbols? Heck yes. Am I nervous about variant sanitary conditions and how they’ll play with my personal gastro-economics? Yessir. Am I worried about the fact that Bangkok’s been flooded for weeks and that’s the first stop on my itinerary? Not really, for some reason, though I probably should be. I’m relying on a bit of luck to get me through that one.
Overall, I’m just excited to be going to a pair of far-flung lands filled with storied cultures—and elephants. Elephants are the big draw for me, the beaches the big draw for my girlfriend. It will be, dare I say, magical?
And there we have it. My trip abroad will be filled with sights, sounds, and rules that I’m not going to immediately understand. (I’ve been told Indian drivers have an entire vocabulary worked out in the honking of their horns, not that it’s really slowed down the rate of car accidents all that much.) Our heroic protagonist (Tourist Adam) will be in a land as different to him as the opening pages of a UF novel are to a new reader. Now, I don’t think I’m alone in this, but half the fun of the genre for me is that I’m entering a world where the laws (of physics and governments) are topsy-turvy, where social power structures are different, and where just plain bizarre stuff can happen. Yet amid all that we have a grounding force in the guise of the very human emotions (even if they are expressed through alien or vampire bodies) that we are all familiar with: love, anger, hope, resentment, sugar-craving, and the like. Even if these things are a bit chaotic and contested in the characters’ minds, they anchor us as we navigate the book and the strange new world the author’s imagination has wrought. Humans as anchors in new worlds. Similar to this, I’ll be anchored by my girlfriend, and she by me.
Okay…I got a bit philosophicalisticish there, so let’s get back to the ABCs of my point, since it was not to express my love of a genre, no matter how keenly felt. My point is this: my trip (C) is equal to the urban fantasy experience (B).
AND THEREFORE, if A = my job, B = Urban Fantasy, and C = my trip abroad, and A = B, and B = C, then by logical chicanery A = C.
In other words: my job = this trip abroad.
And I think we can all guess what that means: if I fall in love with India and/or Thailand and in a fit of romantic fervor decide to cast away the States and never come back, Pocket can’t fire me because I will, after all, still be doing my job.
I know, I know, I know what you’re thinking: this is so crystal-clearly genius, so why hasn’t anybody thought of this before? I’d like to propose that maybe, just maybe, like some UF/F heroes, I’m the Chosen One who will find the mystical, long lost logistic loopholes that lead to a life of sitting on a beach, reading, and still getting paid for all that. Maybe.