This should be filed under “yup, she’s disturbed and thinks weird dark things” and you’re welcome to ignore this post if horror isn’t your gig. Or horror humor. Or really fucked up thought processes resulting in inappropriate innuendo.
Yes, yes, I know it’s early to be thinking about Poe and Lovecraft…it’s still August, after all. But this week it’s been cold enough at night to actually sleep under the covers AND Renaissance Festival started, so I’m in autumn mood.
I saw some horror art today that was Lovecraftian in nature: black tentacles reaching out of a center point, surrounded by human skulls-and-spines like some disturbing pinwheel of death. It was creepily beautiful, if you can wrap your mind around those two words working together.
I got to thinking…humans are ever so full of ourselves as a species, even in horror.
Let’s imagine for one second that the Old Ones, Cthulhu and the rest, existed and are indeed just waiting out there in deep space for Hellboy or some foolish person to open a portal so they can come back. Let’s imagine Leviathan (Biblical) or Jormungandr (Norse) have been hanging out in the depths of the ocean, encompassing the world, for millennia.
Imagine what immortality might be like: where anything with a short life span matters less over time because, well, you can always get another one. Seriously, why would they give a hoot about humans at all?
Humans, for example, live an average of 75 – 100 years. Dogs live an average of 10. Ants live an average of 45 – 60 DAYS. Do we care when a valued pet dies? I certainly hope so. Do we care when an ant dies? Um, speaking for myself here I have to say no, I really don’t.
Do I NOTICE when I have ants? Sure do: and I go about exterminating them so my house is clean. Do I make a point of saving ant skeletons (or exoskeletons, in their case) with which I terrify them and torture their existence? Indeed I don’t give their psyches that much thought at all. I suppose were I Buddhist that would make me a bad one…and to be fair I don’t mess with anthills outside (I figure that’s their space, as long as they aren’t fire ants in my yard).
I have a point.
Given our size, our life span, and our penchant for colonizing every inch of space on this planet, how could humans not be considered the equivalent to ants to The Old Ones?
Why would Cthulhu bother terrorizing ants, creating a pit of despair lined with bony dead human trophies? Even ant serial killers (not serial killers who ARE ants: that’s just silly. I’m thinking the creeps who like to use magnifying glasses and sun to burn the little dudes to death in some disturbing version of a Greek Death Ray) don’t stack up the dead anty bits in warning to other ants.
The pinwheel of death art was neat, but it’s a little ridiculous: only a human would create something like that to psychologically affect another human. The need to be FEARED implies a need to be recognized and valued (positively or negatively) by those who fear you: the terrorizer’s value of the terrorized’s opinion. Incitement of fear response is a defense against something which could potentially harm or kill: a wolf doesn’t fear a rabbit and so doesn’t make a point of threatening a rabbit. A wolf can (not always, but there is capability) fear a human, and so bristles and growls, attempting through incitement of fear to get the human to back the fuck off.
Of course, it can be argued that they are kill trophies. Like a serial killer, or an interstellar Predator hunter. You know, like deer heads on the wall for decoration? Yeah, I don’t get that either, but some people like it. Trophy decoration implies an opinion of the animal involved. Hanging a deer head on the wall is an advertisement that the hunter overcame something difficult to hunt, right, at least theoretically? Please let me be clear: I DON’T LIKE trophy hunting. Never have. I don’t get it: eating the deer meat should be enough in my mind, but whatever. The POINT is that there’s some psychological reason for displaying hunting trophies which implies the creature’s importance to the hunter on some level…and that I’ve never seen an ant head or squirrel on anyone’s man-cave wall.
I’m not saying that, if the Old Ones saw humanity as ants, they couldn’t or wouldn’t exterminate. I mean, for all I know they ARE Daleks. I’m saying it’s ridiculous to think they’d bother with psychological warfare, being both immortal and presumably all powerful (or, at least, so much more powerful we are essentially unable to conceive of the limits).
And so, the idea that an ancient evil god imprisoned in space for a bazillion years, such as Cthulhu, has a collection of human bits either as kill trophies OR as instruments of terror seems…well it just seems somewhat unlikely.
Now I’m seriously wondering if ants have Lovecraftian style horror stories about humans. “Boots On The Ground, and Other Terrifying Tales” to be read in short story form, because hello: 60 day life span.
Also, animals with longer life spans than us, which would potentially be more of a pet to Cthulhu than we are: Galapagos Tortoise (190 years). Bowhead Whale (200 – 245 years), Greenland Sharks (190 years), Koi (200 years), Ocean Quahog Clam (400 – 550 years). Obviously, I make no comment on the intellectual capacity of any of them…what does a clam think about for 500 years?
THAT’S NOT WHAT I MEANT BY CLAM.