Percy Jackson fun and Rufus Beck nostalgia.

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As part of my efforts to refresh my German, I started listening to Book 1 of the Percy Jackson series in German. And oh, wow, what an audio-page-turner! I only listened to the first 30 minutes so far, but there is something in the plot that sounds an awful lot like quantum jumping.

That would be the somewhat scientific term, I guess. Quantum jumping. Somewhat, because I don’t think it was scientifically proven that such things can happen at the macro level. (If you’re curious about possible real-life examples of mass macro quantum jumping, look up the “Mandela Effect.” Wikipedia has the page listed as “false memory,” which I don’t like, so I refuse to link! As if two people can eat the “same” chocolate ice cream and ever experience the same thing! Do you say your memory is false if you didn’t taste the ice cream the same way as the other person? How would you ever know you ever ate the “same” ice cream? There is a reason the police always try to get multiple witnesses. Everyone remembers something different. This happens all the time, even within the “same” reality.)

In overall science and/or science fantasy terms, what happens in the first 30 minutes of the book might be called “experiencing parallel/alternate realities.”

In meditative terms, it would be something like “accessing a different scene of the ‘here and now’ in a unity state.”

At any rate, in Percy Jackson, there is even the mention of Kronos eating his children. Ya know. Cronus, Cronos, or Kronos. (links to Wikipedia). The god of time. (links to a page from a website called www.theoi.com.)

KRONOS (Cronus) was the King of the Titanes and the god of time, in particular time when viewed as a destructive, all-devouring force.

from theoi.com

Coincidentally, this theme of Kronos eating his children was brought to my conscious and synchronistic attention earlier this month (September 2023). The painting, “Saturn Devouring His Son,” was brought up in a work context… not for the first time, which is why I say it came to my “synchronistic attention.” This recurrence of the painting was weird in and of itself, because, due to the nature of the day job I have, it doesn’t happen often that the same things are brought up twice in the same exact context.

The first time Saturn/Kronos at work was brought up was mid-July. And to date, in the near-decade I have had this job both as an employee and as a freelancer, this kind of re-mentioning of a work in the exact same context has happened only twice. (Please forgive the cryptic description of my day job. I signed a NDA.)

And now, Percy Jackson mentions it again.

Also coincidentally (nah, not really), the “Mandela Effect” was brought to my attention in various contexts, once in early August, and once yesterday. (And now I am mentioning it in this post.)

Prior to July this year, I was aware of Goya’s painting and the existence of a Titan called Kronos. But I wasn’t aware of the Mandela Effect, and I don’t usually think about entities eating up their children. But now I am. Thinking. Time and children being devoured and all. So.


The interesting synchronicities aside, listening to Percy Jackson brings back much nostalgia for Rufus Beck, who narrated the Harry Potter series in German. Back in those days, us olden folks listened to these narrations in cassette format. I had books 1-4, and book 4, in particular, consisted of a whole nice BOX of cassettes. I listened to them until the tape stretched.

(I had to look up this expression “stretched tape.” In that process, I found this page. The user with the handle “Tetsujin” says,

Before you can fix any audio, you need to identify exactly what needs fixing. “distortion, tape stretch or something really doesn’t help us to help you. If you do have tape-stretch, wow or flutter, then it can be fixed, …

Tetsujin

For some reason, I find this phrase, “tape-stretch, wow or flutter” very amusing. Is this a thing? Is this an English thing? 😂 There is a thing called tape wow or flutter?


Oh wow. I just looked it up. “Wow” even has its own Wikipedia page.

Wow is a relatively slow form of flutter (pitch variation) that can affect gramophone records and tape recorders. For both, the collective expression wow and flutter is commonly used.

Wow (recording)

WoWowOw! Flutter makes more immediate sense. But wow and flutter? Wow!

I learn English every day. 🤣 In fact, I also learn Korean every day. There are always new words and expressions to learn. Some of them start as slangs and then make it to the dictionary. Others are ancient words that make a comeback.


Related to this, with the German translations of Pure Fiction continuing, I am appreciating English for its simplicity. It really is 100x simpler than many other languages out there. Its nouns have no gender. (unlike Spanish and German and others) Its verbs need not change for formal/informal. (unlike Korean, German, Spanish…) It shares its alphabet with many other languages. (unlike Chinese, Japanese, Thai, and, oh, I don’t know, a whole lot of other languages.)

English even has so many different versions that really, it’s difficult to say that a pronunciation is “wrong.” Partly, I am guessing, it’s due to English’s imperialistic history. You can’t make people you’re colonizing use English and expect everyone to speak the proper British way–whatever that is.

I will talk about this at length on my Korean podcast, as I cover “The Restless Supermarket“, which was one of the works mentioned in “Noir Urbanisms”–which is the book I’m translating from ENG to KOR right now. (On Aim Dreaming, the Korean podcast, I am currently in the process of covering the many references in “Noir Urbanisms.”)

“The Restless Supermarket” has one of the most disgusting main characters I’ve ever read in a work of fiction, and partly it’s because the dude is a white guy in South Africa who somehow thinks he is European…? Wha…? Wtf kind of delusion is that? Dude, you’re in South Africa! And then he goes around telling people to use proper English. (The main character is a retired proofreader. This white guy in South Africa goes around correcting every “wrong” usage of the English language, as he butchers other people’s languages–literally, he butchers people’s names because they’re foreign. Yah.)

Sure, there is grammar and whatnot, but being delusional doesn’t help champion grammar and whatnot. The dude doesn’t even know he isn’t European, and expects people to follow his suggestions for grammar rules! I believe the writer fully intended the disgusting traits of the main character. Thanks to the disgusting traits, the book is amusing in its own way. If the main character weren’t disgusting in one way or another, then I think I would pity him too much–because many things happen that do justify his victim mentality. The world around him really does attack him, and I do feel for him. Proofreading is incredibly important. Just read this thing here: “2000: The Sydney Vault Debacle and the Apparatus Norms Hypothesis”. Lives can be ruined due to typos.

It’s just that, I think it would be too painful to read a whole book about a victim, especially when the victimhood is justified too much. I’m not that sadomasochistic.

By the way, “The Restless Supermarket” would be THE book that is impossible to translate into any language. English may have no formal/informal structures, no alphabet of its own, and no gendered nouns, but darn, the humor and the specific typo examples would be impossible to translate.


Where was I going with this…

Yeah, Percy Jackson, super fun. Quantum jumping! Accessing scenes from unity state! Much parallel-ness! So exciting! Audio page turner! Rufus Beck!

The end.

P.S.

Link to the German audiobook on Scribd: Percy Jackson, Teil 1: Diebe im Olymp

I highly recommend Scribd, especially if you want to listen to lots of foreign-language audio without paying for them too much (when you’re in the early stages of learning, like me with Spanish, and therefore don’t even understand the words; you just wanna listen to what the language sounds like). Besides, all my books are on Scridb. Hehehe. Scribd pays the authors fully, well, and transparently. I love these subscription programs and library programs.