Tuesday, January 01, 2002

INTRODUCTION NOTES to the Transcendence Diaries and The Adventures of Fishy


The Adventures of Fishy is a voluminous collection of diaries and journal entries—almost five thousand pages in various form, from typed manuscripts to many little hardbound journals — that were found in a box in the back of the once famous but now defunct South Beach rock club called Washington Square in Miami, Florida.

The box was found by a local concert promoter named Nasti a few days before a New Years Eve party in 2043. The box is believed to contain the original writings of the infamous singer, songwriter, and general raconteur known as Fishy, also known as the Ambassador, and several other names throughout his short lived but exciting life and career. He disappeared in the late two-thousands and has not been heard from since. He had lived in Miami during the late nineties and early two thousands before his disappearance. He had then moved to New York City. This was a fact. The question of the box of manuscripts found that fateful night is not so easily answered though.

No one who worked at the club knew where the box of writings came from, nor who put them there, nor how long they had rested there before being found. Along with his music, Fishy was also the subject of countless headlines for his own brand of very original and quite radical social and political activism.

Besides being an admired and beloved singer and songwriter in both the rock bands Shattered and Transcendence for a period that spanned more than twenty years, Fishy was also known as the prolific writer of two popular novels, his first The Cosmos is Great and Large, Darnright, which is where we first are introduced to the character Tobias Guess, and the second being the highly controversial The Blue Mask.
During his final years he had also posted his own brand of lunatic rantings and ravings online in what came to be known as the Transcendence Diaries. Sometimes social or political commentary, sometimes disturbingly personal and gut wrenchingly honest. Many believe it was the Transcendence Diaries that led to his eventual and mysterious disappearance.

But the Transcendence Diaries were only one small part of the manuscripts that were found. They soon were revealed to be just chapters of a much larger work called Adventures of Fishy that the artist was working on.

Although occasionally Adventures of Fishy text sometimes does read like a novel, and indeed many of the entries refer to a novel entitled Adventures of Fishy, it is not a novel in the traditional sense. There is no form to the work and very little order. Ideas begin and end in the middle of a thought with no conclusion, never to be mentioned again. The dates of the writings seem random; in fact Fishy had a peculiar habit of dating all of his journal entries according to how old he was at the time rather than what the actual date was. Matching famous historical events referred to in the texts to certain entries has helped the process to a certain extent, but firmly dating each and every individual entry has been next to impossible. [note: the entries are being re-dated now as they are posted in-as-much as they can be.] Because Fishy was believed to be in his early thirties at the time of his disappearance, the work itself is thought to have been written from the late eighties into the late two-thousands. It is difficult to determine when the actual events took place, if at all. Many of the events Fishy wrote about have been corroborated by his family, friends, and band mates. While many more appear to be fictitious.

Adventures of Fishy and the Transcendence Diaries are a confusing work when taken as a whole. On the one hand it is a series of philosophical ramblings in someone’s private diaries. Very personal, and near trivial at times. To call the author neurotic or obsessive-compulsive would be stating the obvious and an understatement to say the least. Borderline insane would be a closer match. At this time, there are many university courses all over the world being devoted to studying the work and many who claim it a work of staggering genius. Others are equally adamant that it is entirely irrelevant in that it isn't anything but the incoherent ramblings of a self-absorbed madman who happened to get lucky turning out a few hit songs.

Whoever actually wrote the majority of the manuscripts had a near obsession with taking notes on everything. From character traits and habits of his associates, family members, and friends, to countless ideas for future songs or films or books he wanted to make, to listing every movie he ever saw, every book he ever read, and everything that he ate for breakfast, lunch, and dinner everyday for months at a time, only to suddenly stop for no apparent reason. No rhyme or reason. Many of the pages just contain lists of food that he ate that day, or excerpts of conversations he may or may not have had with people living or perhaps not.

Indeed it appears that regardless of the final outcome, the various entries do read as though a novel is precisely what Fishy had in mind; the question of course is whether the journal entries are the novel itself, or just notes on a novel the author would eventually write, or was writing somewhere else. The text refers to the novel being published and released, although there is no record of it ever being published, and up to this point there has not been anyone who has come forward to announce that they have ever read the novel.

When reading the book one observes the singer struggle page after page to ‘write’ his manuscript and then abandon it in favor of just making notes about it instead. Or just notes about his day. It cannot be entirely ruled out that what was found was the author’s personal diaries and notes on the novel and nothing else and that somewhere out there is the actual manuscript for the novel itself. And it very well could be called The Adventures of Fishy. This chance cannot be ruled out. Although it is highly unlikely that it was ever published. At the time of his disappearance Fishy was too well known for a secret such as this to be so well kept for so many years.

The collection of over five-thousand pages does make for interesting reading nonetheless. It is a deep and penetrating look at not just the life of the artist himself, but over twenty years of the modern world’s history. It is a record of our time; a time that has now long since past. It is also a fascinating, if not somewhat exhaustive, account of one man’s inner vision and inner-most thoughts, weaving together at least some fact with some fiction; desires, repulsions, philosophies, and obsessions.

Today, almost fifty years later, there are just as many people who claim to have known Fishy personally as there are who attest that he never even existed at all, although his existence at least is a fact that can be corroborated by almost anyone who was alive at the turn of the century. Ironically the work as a whole, regardless of how sporadic and out of order it reads, is now being referred to as Adventures of Fishy anyway. We are all left to draw our own conclusions.

Currently there are several projects underway to edit, categorize, and index the approximately fifteen-hundred different chapters and/or journal entries that comprise the collection of writings that was found. Coming in at just over five thousand pages, it is not an easy task. Here at Transcendent Television we are honored to be a part of this project. What is currently posted on various places on the internet and on this website is about one-fifth of the total, with new chapters and installments being added almost daily as they are sorted and edited. You can start reading from the beginning or skip around. The most recently uploaded chapters are added under a link titled NEWEST INSTALLMENTS. They are dated according to the date they are posted, and not related to the dates of the actual writings themselves.

Recently Updated Information. More on the origin of the Transcendence Diaries: The Transcendence Diaries were written at some point between the transformation of Fishy into Tobias Guess—-it appears that this metamorphosis does indeed occur, although it is still argued by some whether it was literal or simply metaphorical. Tobias Guess disappears entirely from the story for a period of six or seven years just before the transformation—-not even existing in Fishy’s imagination, and Fishy for a brief time at least starts calling himself The Ambassador, which under normal circumstances would be cause for some alarm except for the fact that he had done this on several occasions before throughout his life. As many readers will know, he used to refer to himself as Guess or Eddie Darling at various times a decade earlier, for a brief time the Duke, the Blue Mask, and several other aliases. He begins the Transcendence Diaries one assumes due to the fact that during this time period he was singing in the infamous rock band Transcendence.The Transcendence Diaries, like the Acid Diaries and the Delivery Diaries before them were simply a collection of journal entries spanning a few years in the artist’s life at that time. In the case of the Transcendence Diaries, it was his late twenties to early thirties. This is the time that is considered the singer’s most creatively fertile and artistically inspired period, the time just before his disappearance. Or transformation. Depending on what you believe. The eccentric time-traveling business tycoon, inventor, and philanthropist Tobias Guess himself has not been heard from now in many years and so is not available for questioning concerning Fishy or his whereabouts. As more information becomes available we will certainly post it here.