Introduction to Wanderings

        There is a road somewhere that stretches into infinity....without beginning, without end, and without a name, but nevertheless known.  It is a meandering road, winding its way through hamlet and metropolis alike, and if one were to walk it long enough one would see the ages of the world unfold in its landmarks.  It is the road of wanderers, landless by nature and homeless by choice.
It is the road of Simon Pariah.

                    What can I tell you about Simon Pariah?  At this point, very little other than what you have read in the tales.  I can tell you that there is a lot to learn about him, but you will have to do so through the stories he has to tell you in his journals, if you decide to walk this road with us for a while.  All the answers are forthcoming, but they will not come easy, nor all at once, for that is not the way of journeys or journals....things have to unfold in their own speed.  I can tell you that I am proud to be bringing you these tales and hope to be doing so for a long time to come.

                    I can tell you that Simon Pariah is a person who has been with me for a long time.  Over ten years, in fact.  I first met him in a university course on Eastern Religions, although he looked much different then.  He has come to me in many different guises since then, but I have always recognized him for there are some things about people which never change, no matter how they may try to disguise themselves.  Under guise of a soldier, a businessman, even at one point a super-hero, has Simon come in to my life, but this is the first time that he has permitted his story to be made public.  Maybe it is the first time I have made the first effort to chronicle them properly.  With ten years of memories to sift throught the motivations get a little muddled.

                    Where did he come from?  I am not yet certain.  I have some ideas and theories, but no proof as yet and he's not telling.  I do know that I have seen his traces elsewhere, unmistakeable signs of his passing presence, indications that he paused here or there for a moment before continuing on his way.  In Robert Heinlein's Future History stories he obviously shook hands with Lazarus Long.  In Isaac Asimov's Robot and Empire novels he had made the aquaintance of Daneel Olivaw and chatted once or twice with Hari Seldon.  I'm positive I saw him in Galt's Gulch in "Atlas Shrugged" and again working on the Wynand Building in "The Fountainhead".  He stood in the crowd in "Cerebus:  Church and State", carried a sandwichboard somewhere in Eisner's "The Dreamer".  He's even done some time in the studio.  Listen to the music of Rush, Jim Steinman or James Horner and you'll hear his songs.  He was there when Primus recorded "Tales From the Punchbowl" and ou can even hear him applauding on "Frampton Comes Alive".  Or why not take a close look at the extras in "Braveheart", "The Inspector General", or "Conan the Barbarian".....I'm pretty sure you'll find him in there somewhere.

                    Of course, I do not kid myself that I am the only one he has visited.  Why, several people I know have met with him on different occasions.  My good friend Ian McDonald seems to have more than a passing knowledge of him.  Lee Taylor actually able to show me a journal entry that he had never given me.  And my long time compatriot Dean Collett is the only person I know who seems to show as intimate a knowledge of him as I do.  Of course, my wife Michelle has known about him all along, but she could hardly avoid him, and I cannot say whether she is the happier for having known him.  To all of these people I am greatly indebted, for sharing their stories and their sense of life.  It is to them, and the many others like them along the way, that this work is dedicated, and I think Simon himself would approve of that.  It is especially dedicated to my new daughter, Raven Rose.....Simon's stories of the road are the legends she will be brought up on and I hope they will help her choose some good roads herself.  I know Simon would approve of that.

                    But do not forget for a moment....the stories of Simon the Pariah are for you, the reader.  For everyone who sees the world with a sense of wonder and adventure....for everyone who sees a problem as the road to a solution....for everyone who accepts the challenge and loves the mystery....and most importantly, for everyone who says "I'm only human", and means it as a statement of possibility rather than as a statute of limitations....the Journals of Simon Pariah are for you.

                    Somewhere out there is a road that stretches into infinity....and to one and all it is calling.  Some can hear it and some choose not to listen.  It calls all the same.  If you've ever felt like answering its call, even for a short time, then we'll probably meet somewhere along the way.  Won't you join me in my travels for a while?

                    Come along with me...
                    Let's go wandering.


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