not just a mag, a way of life. a magazine proposed by Coyote in 1995, based on some earlier ideas, entirely subverted by Cthulu and the Laughing Fool into a jumble of multimedia silliness and extravagance which turned into a tarpit-like muddle from which any and all productivity was doomed to fail.

"We were being irrelevant on the Internet before anyone else!" - tlf

archives from this particularly -something- period of our lives will soon be found online once again at an address to be announced and hey! on Everything itself! See:

General meanings

Concrete means tangible, not abstract. Physically real, not theoretical.

e.g. We always knew that thefez had the technology to breed spiders with human heads!, but we never thought he was crazy enough to do it, until we were confronted with concrete evidence of his bizarre crimes.

It means well-defined, not nebulous or conceptual.

e.g. I'd like to visit the moon some day, but I have no concrete plans on how to get there.


For other words with similar latin derivation to concrete, see accrete and discrete; construct, conjoin and converge.


Geologically, a concrete is a rocky material formed from smaller particles such as sand or gravel stuck or fused together, conjoined by accretion.


Derived from the geologic meaning, concrete is a grey, ubiquitous building material made from Portland cement mixed with builder’s sand and aggregate (small chips of rock) for bulk and strength. Typically this is in a ratio of 1 part cement to 2 parts sand to 3 parts aggregate. The cement provides a glue that holds the sand and rocks together.

This mixture is mixed, by hand for small amounts or in a cement mixer for larger quantities, and moistened with water until it is sludgy, and then poured into position.

When it dries it sets into a kind of artificial stone used to build just about anything from gutters to pots to paving stones to harbours to bridges to roadways to railways to foundations to tunnels to skyscrapers. For large projects, the wet concrete is poured over steel rods to make steel reinforced concrete.

Mortar, the stuff used to hold bricks together in construction is a similar mix, typically 6 parts sand to 2 parts cement to 1 part lime for a compound that is stickier, more elastic but not as strong as concrete.

A short history of concrete

Assyrians and Babylonians: Used clay Egyptians: Used a cement made from Lime and Gypsum 1756: John Smeaton, a leading British engineer makes "the first modern concrete" by adding pebbles and powdered brick to his "hydraulic lime" cement. 1824: Joseph Aspdin, a British mason, invents and patents Portland cement, using a burned a mixture of ground limestone and clay. 1849: Joseph Monier, a gardener from Paris, invents reinforced concrete. He used it to make garden pots with an iron mesh covered in cement. In 1867 he received a patent on it, and in the same year showed it at the Paris Exposition, having realized the use in other kinds of construction.


Using a meaning unrelated to rocks, but related to tangibility; in computer programming a Concrete class is sometimes used to refer to a class that can be instantiated, i.e. not an abstract class. A concrete type has a similar meaning.


Concrete is a creator-owned comic book character, the creation of writer/artist Paul Chadwick. Concrete has been regularly cited as one of the best non-mainstream super-hero/science fiction type comics out there, and one of its more vocal champions is Harlan Ellison, who has called it the best “being published today by anyone, anywhere.” Concrete has intermittently appeared since 1986, when it premiered in the black and white comics anthology Dark Horse Presents # 1. Many Concrete stories appeared in that anthology and he had his own 10 issue series from Dark Horse as well. These days, a color Concrete mini-series appears every year or so.

Paul Chadwick’s reputation in the comics industry rests solely on Concrete. He has done some work on minor mainstream comics and another creator-owned series, The World Below, which was unfortunately largely ignored. None of his other work approaches the level of quality of Concrete, and as Chadwick devotes much of his time to his work in the movie industry, it will probably be his legacy. "I will probably step away from it now and then to do a special project, but I fully plan on doing it into my seventies.”

Concrete is Ron Lithgow, a speechwriter for Senator Mark Douglas. Shortly after his divorce, Lithgow goes on a camping trip in the Sierra Nevadas with his friend Michael. There, they are kidnapped and placed into alien bodies. Lithgow escapes, but Michael does not, and the alien spacecraft departs with his body, never to return. The giant body of gray rock is incredibly strong with powerful vision, but he cannot taste, smell, or feel. He struggles with his clumsiness. Perhaps the most profound loss of all is that his body has no genitals.

The problem of how Concrete can live a public life is cleverly solved. The existence of aliens, of course, cannot be revealed to the general public. So the fiction that he was a terminally ill patient placed into an experimental cyborg body by the army is created. And the general public is bombarded by Concrete merchandise, Concrete commercials, and Concrete appearances on talk shows and sitcoms, so the public tires of him and ceases to ask troublesome questions. Chadwick’s companions are Dr. Maureen Vonnegut (no relation to the author), a government scientist assigned to monitor him, and Larry Munro, a graduate student in English who Lithgow hired to be his assistant.

But this is all background to the question that drives most of the stories: What do you do with your life when you are in a powerful body of gray rock? There are no super-villains or aliens to fight, just everyday obstacles to overcome, and the struggle to do good with his new gifts.

The collections, all from Dark Horse Comics:

1990: Concrete: Complete Short Stories 1986-1989. Collects the stories from Dark Horse Presents.

1994: The Complete Concrete Collects Concrete #1-10.

1994: Concrete: Fragile Creature Collects Fragile Creature #1-4. Chadwick puts his movie experience to good use in this story in which Concrete is hired to help cut stunt costs on a movie set.

1995: Concrete: Killer Smile Collects Killer Smile #1-4. Larry Munro is taken hostage by a crazed man.

1996: Concrete: Short Stories 1990-1995. More stories from Dark Horse Presents.

1997: Concrete: Think Like a Mountain. Collects contains Think Like a Mountain #1-7. Concrete falls in with a group of Earth First! environmentalists.

1998: Strange Armor: The Origin of Concrete. Collects Strange Armor #1-5. Retells and updates the origin of Concrete, originally told in the first Concrete series.

Con"crete (? or ?), a. [L. concretus, p. p. of concrescere to grow together; con- + crescere to grow; cf. F. concret. See Crescent.]


United in growth; hence, formed by coalition of separate particles into one mass; united in a solid form.

The first concrete state, or consistent surface, of the chaos must be of the same figure as the last liquid state. Bp. Burnet.

2. Logic (a)

Standing for an object as it exists in nature, invested with all its qualities, as distingushed from standing for an attribute of an object; -- opposed to abstract.

Hence: (b)

Applied to a specific object; special; particular; -- opposed to general. See Abstract, 3.

Concrete is opposed to a abstract. The names of individuals are concrete, those of classes abstract. J. S. Mill.

Concrete terms, while they express the quality, do also express, or imply, or refer to, some subject to which it belongs. I. Watts.

Concrete number, a number associated with, or applied to, a particular object, as three men, five days, etc., as distinguished from an abstract number, or one used without reference to a particular object. -- Concrete quantity, a physical object or a collection of such objects. Davies & Peck. -- Concrete science, a physical science, one having as its subject of knowledge concrete things instead of abstract laws. -- Concrete sound or movement of the voice, one which slides continuously up or down, as distinguished from a discrete movement, in which the voice leaps at once from one line of pitch to another.



© Webster 1913.

Con"crete, n.


A compound or mass formed by concretion, spontaneous union, or coalescence of separate particles of matter in one body.

To divide all concretes, minerals and others, into the same number of distinct substances. Boyle.


A mixture of gravel, pebbles, or broken stone with cement or with tar, etc., used for sidewalks, roadways, foundations, etc., and esp. for submarine structures.

3. Logic

A term designating both a quality and the subject in which it exists; a concrete term.

The concretes "father" and "son" have, or might have, the abstracts "paternity" and "filiety". J. S. Mill.

4. Sugar Making

Sugar boiled down from cane juice to a solid mass.


© Webster 1913.

Con*crete" (?), v. i. [imp. & p. p. Concreted; p. pr & vb. n. Concreting.]

To unite or coalesce, as separate particles, into a mass or solid body.

Applied to some substances, it is equivalent to indurate; as, metallic matter concretes into a hard body; applied to others, it is equivalent to congeal, thicken, inspissate, coagulate, as in the concretion of blood. "The blood of some who died of the plague could not be made to concrete."



© Webster 1913.

Con*crete", v. t.


To form into a mass, as by the cohesion or coalescence of separate particles.

There are in our inferior world divers bodies that are concreted out of others. Sir M. Hale.


To cover with, or form of, concrete, as a pavement.


© Webster 1913.

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