Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Time dilation is uncomfortable. Maybe there's a cream for that.

It is a frustrating morning. I feel like time is racing away from me this morning. Time isn’t flying because I’m having fun though, it’s flying because I wish I could stay here and I can’t. I have to go to work. I’ll be happy enough when I get to work. I really like my job. But I have this other fun thing I want to do as well and the two hours I have to spend travelling in between is maddening.

It’s sort of foggy today. I love fog. I know it’s dangerous for driving, but I love looking at it. I must remember to include fog in all my stories. It’s so simple and yet so mysterious.  It’s starting to dissipate right now, but it was thicker when I first woke up and looked through the window at 6:30 am.

I think I really have to start getting up with TheMan everyday at 5 am. Which means I have to stop reading in bed every night until I’m dropping the book. A half an hour of reading should suffice. The story is not going anywhere; the book will not disappear because I don’t read fifty more pages that night. I like being able to talk to TheMan first thing in the morning and have coffee with him. I get a more done in the morning too with an extra hour.

Who was that said, when she stopped working at Starbucks, that she would never again get up before sunrise? Yeah, that was me. If anyone ever asks me the one overall lesson I have learned in life is that I feel I can give to others? It’s never say never.
Gotta get ready for work.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Wherefore Space Station Kittinger?

Today I will use number one from the Thirty-day novel writing meme. I’m not going to use one every day, just when I feel it’s necessary. I don’t like some of the suggestions on the list, so I may be changing or skipping them to suit my taste. Example: “Which published book is it most like?” Oh, out of all of them? None I hope, but I’m writing sci-fi and fantasy. There’s gonna be similarities. For the similarities I want them to be classic, not trite. If that even makes sense. I was talking with DB about that yesterday. Should the military organization in charge of the station and the transports be naval or air force originated or a combination of both? DB said they’re always navy originated: games, movies, books…always naval. Yes, I said, but does that make it classic or trite? If I follow that line of thinking is it because it’s organic (ships on the ocean becoming ships in an ocean of stars) or because so many other people have done it and I just think of it that way.
This is another reason my projects often stall. I spend way too much time fretting over minutiae. I feel these things are important, damnit! I want to be original! On to the prompt.
1- Name of current Project and back story of the name
I’m thinking they mean title. I started this one in my paper journal a couple of days ago and stalled because that particular project is fantasy world. There’s dragons. Shut up, my dragons will be original! But fantasy novels and the accompanying titles with dragon in them are a dime a dozen. They’re flipping everywhere. I need to have a lot more of that story finished before I could decide on a title. I thought, “It’s just a working title!” but my brain rebelled and just refused to try, constantly slipping off to think of entirely non-related things. Really, that story will be a major investment in time and energy; I’ll have to create a whole world. I think I may have to start with one of the two sci-fi projects.
Name of the Project: Working name only - Space Station Kittinger.

Joseph Kittinger
Back story of the name: Ooh, this is where the fun starts! The station is named after Colonel Joseph William Kittinger II. And why?

On August 16, 1960 Captain Kittinger put on a pressure suit and a parachute kit (the two totaled about 150 extra pounds) and stepped into his flying machine – the Excelsior III, an open gondola with giant helium balloons attached. He travelled up, 102,800 feet. That’s about 19.5 miles. It is, if I understand the info on this page correctly, the mid-stratosphere in the upper levels of the ozone layer. So, pretty damn far up…especially for it being nineteen-effing-sixty in a gondola. And when he gets all the way up there? He jumps. Can you imagine, all that long, long, LONG way up in just that gondola? Towed by helium balloons? No comforting solid walls, no engine. And then to ride up all that way, past the clouds, see the earth getting farther and farther and farther…and then jump? Free falling for four minutes and 36 seconds, the falling body reaching a maximum speed of 614 miles per hour? And dear gods, they got it on film. That You Tube video has lots of fascinating bits of info in it as captions too.
Did you know this man is still alive? He went on to lots of other achievements. He’s a goddamn original.
source: Nat'l Museum of the USAF
I keep thinking about that moment. That moment when he’s standing in the gondola, looking down at earth. I wonder about the adrenalin surging through him, his clarity of thought in that moment. That moment…and then he steps off.
So that’s why I’ve named my space station Kittinger. Early in the story, Zee (the redhead running woman) will tell this story to the scruffy young man (I can’t decide on his name yet). Then, later in the story…someone will experience a moment like that. I haven’t decided who.
How’s that. Jeez, this took me two hours to research and type up. I can’t ever do anything easily.


Monday, July 29, 2013

Project Kittinger

When the pinball brain is on fast forward I get fucking movies in my head. Not just the written word, it plays like I’m watching an actual movie. The working title is Space Station Kittinger...because that will be the name of the space station. That's a dull actual title, but I want to give it something. Makes it more real.
A women running. She’s running barefoot.  We can hear her accelerated breathing,  we hear the pounding of her feet, because she’s running through a deserted corridor in a space station. She has thick red hair and it’s flying out behind her. She's wearing comfortable looking clothes but they're not exercise clothes. Is she running away from someone or something? There's a look of determination on her face and she whips around a corner and almost directly in front of her is a cleaning 'bot. She's startled but leaps over it with ease, glancing behind her and laughing. Now there are a few people ahead. She dodges around them, still running. Two young men in uniform are walking toward her, one sees notices her and shouts as she passes, "Stillman is looking for you!" An overhead voice, sounding extremely annoyed, "Zee! To the docking bay! Now, damnit!" She grins and whips around another corner. She's running toward something.
A ship is docking at the station. Interior, we see a young man, sitting alone. The area he’s sitting in is not shiny and fancy, this is not some high-tech space machine, it’s a beat up transport. The waiting area is dimly lit. He’s dressed shabbily. Big boots, baggy, worn out clothes. He’s wearing mirrored sunglasses, he has shaggy, shoulder-length hair and a beard. Beat up duffel bag at his feet. Sitting very still, head leaned back. Is he asleep? Obligatory sounds of pressure valves and clunking around coming from the docking of the ship to the station. A voice over the intercom. “Docking completed. You are green to disembark.” Pause, slight tones of sarcasm. “Enjoy your stay, kid.” The young man, not asleep, slowly and deliberately lifts his left arm and flips the bird at the disembodied voice. He head comes upright. He grabs the duffel bag, stands, and heaves it over his shoulder. He steps up to the door.
“Okay. Let’s go.” The door opens.

Who gave the bitch in the back a drink?

Staring at the page. Staring at the page. Staring at the big mutha fuckin blank goddamn page. 

Why are the fonts in my posts all over the place? Some posts the fonts are tiny, some the fonts seem normal. What’s up with that? 

Fonts are so much NOT what I want to write about. How about I write about the fucking oversensitivity of my keyboard and how it randomly opens up tools I don’t need and haven’t asked for and bringing up new windows or tabs I don't want and changing the formatting of whatever I'm typing randomly when I use Word.  Like while I was type this paragraph? It suddenly aligned itself center. NO. I do not want to fucking center this paragraph! So I have t 

Christ, it just happened again. This time? It tabbed the paragraph in, then brought up a window with options for things to “open”, you know, as if I wanted to open a new file…NO, I do not, I just want to fucking finish typing a fucking sentence!  

The worst one is when I am typing out a funny facebook post or a comment of praise on a insightful article I just read and I’d like to ask a sort of detailed question and I’m almost done AND… 

…and the hypersensitivity of the keys suddenly highlights the entire post and with the next keystroke it’s deleted. Fuck you, computer, eff-to-the-uck YOU. 

I think it may have something to do with how fast I type, which is pretty fast.  It may be the shortcuts and sticky keys combos that are supposed to make your computer work faster and easier. I don’t care about these and cannot remember my own new house phone number, so why would I try to remember a bunch of stupid shortcuts but my computer apparently feels I need them, because it keeps reminding me they are available. I’ve looked but I can’t figure out how to turn them off! 

My possessed computer is also not what I want to write about. But look, it filled up thirty minutes.  

I’m sure it only took you a couple of minutes to read what it took half an hour to drag out of my brain.

I’m super-cranky today. Also feeling...not good enough. There's a mean part of my brain that starts to whisper to me when I start getting excited about the possibility of writing a real, actual novel. "Who's going to read that? You think you're good? Look at all the people who are way better than you, look at how long it took them to get published. You're nowhere near that good. You are wasting your time, you should be using your energy for something else."

"You're being delusional. You're going to make a fool of yourself."

That's my biggest fear.

I really wish this back of the brain bitch would shut up.

I think my next post will be a cast of characters. From my own life I mean. Heh, cast and crew. Get your name in the credits! I will be introducing the various facets of my own brain too, so I'm sure that will be...creepy...for you to read. Okay, I really want a cigarette now. I've been keeping it to two a day, very occasionally three if I'd had a really bad day. It's keeping me from ripping my hair out by the roots. So that's good.



Sunday, July 28, 2013

Friday 5: At the movies. I know it's Sunday, shut up.

From the good people at Friday 5.  This one is especially suited to me, I adore going to the movies, it’s a very special thing for me. I love going alone. I love going with my sons. I love standing in line anticipating the show, reading the posters for the other movies. I like the horrible popcorn. I never buy the overpriced candy there though, we always go to the Walgreens first and get candy there and sometimes our drinks too if its wintertime and we have plenty of pockets in which to stash them.
This was super quick to type up so it’s an apology for the previous boring, short entry.
1.       Where in the theater do you like to sit when you’re at the movies?
When I was a child I loved the front row, gods know why. You certainly can’t see properly up there. Maybe because I was and kid and short and didn’t want people blocking my view.

When I’m with the boys we usually sit about the middle of the theater, but I have to have the seat on the end of the row, next to the aisle. I don’t like feeling hemmed in and I usually have to go to the bathroom at least once during the movie, dangit.

When I go by myself I sit in the very back row on the aisle. Most people don’t like to sit back there, so I have a large area to myself and if I do have to use the bathroom it’s quick to get out and back again.

2.      What characteristics does the ideal movie companion have?
I really enjoy going to the movies with my son, DB. We like a lot of the same type of movies, sometimes for the same reasons and sometimes for different reasons. We have great talks afterwards about the movie itself, the genre, the movie business, what we’d do different if we were in charge, the historical accuracy of the movie.  An ideal movie companion for me is someone who will discuss the movie afterward with me with as much enthusiasm as my own. DB wants to be an actor and he’s scary smart too.

3.      What memory do you have of things not going quite as usual at the movies?
The re-release of Star Wars on the big screen. I was too young to see it the first time. By the time The Empire Strikes Back came out I was a definite geek girl fan. I stood in a line around the building to see that one.  So when Star Wars was rereleased in the theaters I was really, really excited. Ridiculously excited.

I don’t remember what year that was, but DB was quite small, maybe one or two? We went as a family. Usually DB was pretty okay in the theater, falling asleep during the movie. But not this time. He started to fuss and fuss. He didn’t want his Dad. I couldn’t let him bother the other movie patrons who had also, I’m sure, been ridiculously excited to see Star Wars on the big screen. So I had to take DB out in the hall and walk him up and down, let him toddle and tire himself out. He finally fell asleep. I didn’t miss the whole movie, but missed a few classic scenes. DB is mightily embarrassed about this now, being a big ol’ sci-fi geek himself.
4. What are your feelings about commercials and movie previews playing before the film you’re there to see?

I don’t mind them a bit. I really like the previews (MORE movies to plan to watch!) and with the commercials added in, it gives you extra time before the movie if you’re a bit late because of traffic or what have you.

5.      Who is an actor or director whose involvement in a film is enough to make you want to see it?
M. Night Shamaylan. Shut up, I like him. Robert Downey, Jr. Ridley Scott. Tommy Lee Jones is usually good in anything. Angelina Jolie.

Thanks for participating, and have a reel good weekend!


Characters, stahp!

Internet was acting up this morning so not posting in the AM. My brain is on fast forward, I have plotlines and characters and scenes from three different possible books running through my head they are all tangled up and they just won’t stop. The people are walking and talking and not stopping. I have whole first chapter of one story and a large portion of the plot and Christ I just don’t have the time to sit down and write it right now.  I’m afraid I’m going to lose it. I don’t even have time to type out the notes right now.

THIS is what is so damn frustrating about wanting to write. When I get like this, if I sit down and start the story I won’t be able to stop for hours, it will absolutely consume me and I have other things that MUST get done, both tonight and for the rest of the week.

Maybe I can get the notes typed up tomorrow morning if I get up early enough before I have to go to the apartment for cleaning duty.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Neither here nor there and yet everywhere.

Last night I dreamed a stranger (a person unknown to me in real life) read my blog and liked it and put me on his list of blogs to read. It’s called “following” on Blogger for any friends and family possibly reading this, so if I say I have a new stranger following me it doesn’t mean I’m being stalked, just expanding my sphere of influence. Insert evil laugh here!

But alas, c’est pas vrai. It is not so. Not today at least.
I am not feeling the flow today, the mental flow. Perhaps because I am feeling the physical flow instead. Making lots of spelling and grammar errors. Unintentional ones, not my regular ol’ pinball brain slang. Meh. Having a hard time concentrating on spoken words too. TheMan is telling me more about Jim Croce and as I only know his two most popular songs I’m trying to listen because I really do want to know. I find myself having to pay attention to individual words and repeat the sentences in my head. I’ll probably have to do that at work too. I know I frown in concentration when I do this; I’ll have to try hard not to. Don’t want clients thinking I’m not happy to be there.
I met the most interesting client yesterday. I wish I could describe this person, but my code of ethics as a massage therapist does not allow it. I can’t even tell you the gender of the person. But the person was dressed uniquely and had definite flair. Casual flair, inexpensive flair, putting together the simplest of garments and yet drawing the eye (mine at least) while being a quiet person. Usually that sort of confidence and ease of style comes with maturity but the person was quite young (to me). I know the persons age; I just can’t tell you the exact number.
 I really like my job. I meet people one-on-one and interact with them in a way that delights my introvert soul and helps them renew and heal themselves on both physical and emotional levels.
Must eat and get ready for work now. I work every other weekend ten a.m. to four p.m. It’s two long days but good for the paycheck. I like that too.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Goddamnit...that fucking hurt.

Do you know what I just did?

Do you know what I just did?


Of course you don't, because I haven't told you yet and you're not psychic. If you are psychic, don't tell me. That would sort of creep me out.

I just accidentally closed out the tab for today's post.  A post that was only half-finished but had lots of nice links and relevant pictures with sources labeled and hardly any swearing. I had a bunch of tabs open and it was getting confusing so I was closing out the ones I'd linked to as sources already. And with the slip of the hand and eye...I closed out the blogger dashboard tab where I was creating said post.  I just lost all that hard work and cleverness because I closed out the wrong damn tab. Because I wasn't following my own intended SOP of writing the post in Word and copying it over after it was finished.

I couldn't find a source listed for this but it looks like originally it was a Very Demotivational meme.

Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck. This is causing me actual physical pain and nausea. Oh mygods, that fucking hurt.

That'll learn me, hm? Yeah. That will learn me.

If it hurts this much, does it mean I'm a real writer?

Edit: Do you know what I found after I published this post? Blogger brings up the list of all your posts after you publish one, I guess so you can label or edit them immediately if you so choose. And second from the top? There was my lost post, saved as a draft. Thankyouthankyouthankyou, dear gods, thank you.

Thursday, July 25, 2013 which I am silly and whingy by turns.

I am not feeling the muse today. I'm about to get my period and...yes, that's right! I said that OUT LOUD! Uterine lining will be shed tonight! Fear my mighty mood-swings! Cower as I stomp through the house demanding chocolate and searching for a heating pad!

Okay, I'm done now. Anyway, perhaps the muse...shall we name her? I'm influenced by the Greek mythology I read as a child, so I envision any muse as female. Should I choose one of the original nine muses? None of them really fit for blogging, except maybe Clio as the muse of history-which I suppose technically fits because the second I click publish my words become a reference to the barely passed past. But I don't like "technically." Let's name her something else. I'll have to think on it. Maybe my muse will provide her own name somehow.

I'm cold! I want a cigarette! Guess I'm not done quite yet.

Moving on! My muse did not show up. Except she sort of did, because obviously I'm typing right this minute. She's phoning it in. I hope she's not musing some other would-be author. I want all the muse for myself! Maybe she's out climbing trees.

The flood of hormones is amplifying the pinball tendencies of my brain.  I have to get dressed for work, I should start now even though I have forty minutes before I need to leave, because in this state of mind it will take me that long to get ready. I am unsatisfied with this post. But at least I posted.

Hey. Hey. Hey. I almost forgot. I have an idea for a collaboration with my son Dexter and myself. Stick-figure comic book histories! I would research the history of something...say, salt. Like way back to the beginning research. Write it up in my own particular idiom, paraphrasing it in a funny way while still maintaining accuracy of fact. Have Dexter illustrate them with his stick figures! His stick figures are not just regular old stick figures, they have definite Dexter style. At least, I think so. I am his mom, it's possible I have a slight bias. I'll have to post some so you can see what I mean. He's been drawing them for ten years now, he's really developed ne sais quoi. Helping educate people through funny! It's the best of two awesome worlds! Two great tastes that taste great together! That is the Reese's Peanut Butter Cup of ideas!

Hey, no one is allowed to steal that idea, that is MY idea! I claim that idea. Copyright! Dexter needs a real job, he's twenty-one and can't drive yet, for Christ's sake!

Okay, seriously I'm done now. My laptop battery is running down and now I only have twenty-four minutes to get ready. Twenty-three...

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

A plethora, nay, a veritable surfeit of memes...

Yay, I found 30 Day Memes! I was looking for short writing prompts, stuff I could knock out in thirty minutes or so on the days I have to go to work and can't spend three hours whacking away at the keys.  It...doesn't really help me today, because I spent so much reading all the fun thirty day writing, photo, video, and drawing challenges that I'm out of time. I have to prepare the pot roast for the crockpot before I go to work. So...bye!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Boring post about moving and apartment cleaning.

Okay! Apartment cleaning update, 'cause I know ya'll are following along with my saga. I'm posting it so I can remember how much trouble it was cleaning up an apartment after living there eight years with two cats and two male children who went from grade school to adulthood.

Both bedrooms completely cleaned out, with ceiling, walls and carpets vacuumed. Ditto for living room. Trash was picked up today and four more bags of trash went out to the cans. No more recycling left.

Found the cat pee smell in the living room MIGHT have only been coming from the black bookshelf that was the only piece of furniture left in the room. The boys had said they wanted it but then decided no, so I broke it down and as I was pulling the nails out of the cardboard backing I smelled the pee stink. After I moved all the bookshelf bits to the landing so I could vacuum the pee smell seemed to be gone in the living room. We'll see tomorrow.

Still left is cleaning the oven (damn, I had wanted to skip that but it's listed in my rental agreement) and the compartment under the cooktop. Vacuum, sweep, scrub the kitchen floor and take down the old curtains. Clean the bathroom and sweep and  vacuum landing and the stairs down to the outside door.

Call the landlady and set up an exit walk-through. Next Monday the last of the trash goes out.  Seven more days.

An incomplete written history of my personal history of writing...

Thank the gods I remembered to type this out in Word for ease of editing. Just a when I was about to click post I realized my internet connection had dropped. I might have lost the whole entry. Two hours of work.

So. A daily regimen of writing.

Yeah, I'm probably going to be rabbitting on about this for a number of entries. Also, I feel extra-wordy today. Be warned.

I'd like to write seriously, you see. I have what I feel are novel-worthy ideas. But I must, must, must write everyday if I’m going to get into shape to eventually sit down and stretch these ideas into actual books.  Books with plots and exposition and character development and all that other cool junk that makes people truly want to read what I write. Also to possibly make a bit of a decent income so I can fulfill my other dream of becoming a semi-hermit that doesn’t have to go outside much and you know, be amongst the peoples. I love humanity. I don’t care for most people over much.

When I was a teen I kept a journal and out of my own little head came up with the idea of making a long list of things I thought were really neat and writing about them when my own geeky-massively introverted-awkwardly shy-hyperemotional days provided no interesting fodder. Which was way more often than you might think. Yes, I was a typical teen and sometimes poured out my angst on the page. But I also knew that most every other teen had angst to spare and angst was mostly boring. Gut-wrenching expose can be done well, but usually not by teens who have no real sense of structure and conclusion.

I thought I was very clever and innovative with this list of simple prompts. I had no idea this was a typical exercise for new writers to sharpen skills. This was long before the internet was available to the common masses of humanity, you see, back in the Iron Age of technology...the 1980's. If we wanted to look things up we went to the library. It just never occurred to me that there might be books that help you teach yourself to write. I figured that type of learning only happened in colleges.

I don't know who I thought was going to read these faltering proto-essays. Why write an a page and a half extolling the comforting virtues of a simple cup of tea if no one is going to read it? Hm. I just don't recall. That was twenty-five years ago.  Maybe I didn't think anyone would read them. Well, no one will read them now. During my divorce in my mid-thirties I burned all the journals from my youth and early adulthood as a symbolic act of leaving the past behind...and because most of them were complete crap.

This morning I googled (yay, internet!) for lists of writing prompts (yay, free writing prompts at my fingertips!) and found Luke Neff’s big ol’ list of writing prompts. These will be excellent for in-depth exercises. They are high-school level, which is where I feel I ought to start.Thank you, random high school humanities teacher. Thank you.

I won’t be using one today, however, because upon attempting to write about my personal history of writing and my search for writing prompts, I have managed to actually write. I’ve written an acceptable daily blog post and completed today’s task of getting some damn thing down on paper. Um…getting something on screen? Shut up, I’m forty-two, I’ll describe it however I like. Paper it is.

I feel like I should apologize for the dearth of pictures with funny captions, but I have to break my reliance on visual aids and sharpen my descriptive skills. I'm not a contributor, hilarious as I find them. That would be a good beginning to getting myself out there into the world of published writers but I have no ideas for those list things they do. I want to write sci-fi and fantasy novels. Sci-fi and fantasy stories are descriptive heavy, because if you plunk your reader down in the future or an alternate reality you have to create a whole cloth world for the action to be plausible. At least, that’s how I think it should be done. And that’s how I will do it.

And now…once again…I have to make the hour drive to the apartment to clean. I’m so terribly, terribly tired of this.


Monday, July 22, 2013

This post took a left turn at Albuquerque...

So. A daily regimen of writing.

Pictured: Knock-off Romulan Ale
Some days, inspiration refuses to show up, like that person who promised they’d do something important for you, like come to your party and bring the booze. Then they don’t and you’re left playing beer pong with room-temp tonic water and orange juice and Mad Dog and everyone feels awkward and pissed.

That analogy has never actually happened to me because my anxiety doesn’t allow me to throw the type of parties where it would occur and good lord, I would never even invite friends over for movie night if I couldn’t purchase a 30 case of Busch and couple of bottles of Two Buck Chuck.
But when inspiration doesn’t show up when I ask it to, it is as frustrating as I imagine the above scenario might be.
Sometimes inspiration does show up but it drags you through the swamp to the mulberry trees on the other side…like the hour I spent typing up that first analogy because I wanted it exactly right. So, you travel through the swamp and get all mosquito bitten and ruin your favorite boots because damn it, you can’t just buy mulberries at the grocery store and you want to make some homemade dye for your new renaissance faire skirt.
Okay, that scenario is totally in the realm of possibility for me.

I'm the one in the big hat. Well...I'm the one in the biggest hat. Those are the friends for which I would totally provide cheap liquor on movie night.

Oh, gad. Thank you, BroGirl62. Thank you.
Sometimes inspiration shows up way too early without calling first and follows you around the kitchen throwing ideas at you while you’re trying to make your breakfast of poached eggs and buttered toast and tea. The ideas are like dozens of popcorn pieces being thrown at you, bouncing off your body and falling to the floor and you want to gather them up and plant them and grow popcorn trees, but you really want some poached eggs! 

That’s what happened to me this morning. Because inspiration is a damn flake and I don’t even know why I’m friends with a mental construct. This is what comes of being bipolar. I can’t recommend it.

And now I have to drive the hour to my old apartment again, because this is cleaning week before I turn it back over to the landlady.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

New titles, new titles, new titles for old...

I'm considering a title change for my blog. The "hell in a handcart" reference was appropriate when I started the blog several years ago. The blog quickly stalled because of actual life shit that precluded daily blog updates. Now I'm getting back at it, because if I ever want to be a real damn writer I need a daily discipline of writing, even if it's just snarky blog posts. But...what should the new title be? I want something that encapsulates my brilliance, damn it!


I have a few thoughts.
Corpus Callosum - The corpus callosum is a wide, flat bundle of neural fibers that connects the right and left hemispheres of the brain. Connections, see? Funky connections, which I do. Too pretentious?


Psyche! I totally fooled you guys!
Fangly Fish Laughing - This is all ready the...whatcha call it...domain name? I think that's right, my blog domain name. It's an obscure Homestar Runner reference, from a Strong Bad Email. That there picture of the fangly fish isn't one of the deep sea anglerfish that Strong Bad is referring to though. That's a coelacanth.
 Coelacanth Press - 'Cause I just like the coelacanth and this blog is supposed to be about learning a discipline of daily writing. Having "press" up there would remind me of my writing goals, to eventually be published. Have you heard the story of the coelacanth? It was believed extinct for 65 million years. Then it discovered hanging out off the coast of Madagascar.  That's just a whole barrel of awesome.
Got any suggestions? Opinions?

Friday, July 19, 2013

Nothin' to see here...

I miss my kids. I miss DB and Dexter. Yes, it's only been a month since I moved and I've seen them periodically. It's not the same as having them under my roof and making them dinner and hanging out with them watching SF Debris get his sci-fi snark on. I know they're eighteen and twenty-one and this would happen eventually. Shut up. I miss my babies.

not pictured: DB and Dexter. Dexter would never wear that type of sweater.

The above photo shows David Bowie and Bing Crosby singing The Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth. It has nothing to do with me missing DB and Dexter, but it captures the kind of cognitive dissonance we all three think is hilarious.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Time doth flit; oh, shit.

UPDATE: February 8, 2014 I have had several visitors from different countries find this entry when searching on Google for the meaning of "Time doth flit; oh, shit."

It means, "goddamnit time got away from me again." Sort of...just like it sounds.

It can also have a deeper meaning...time slipping away from you and you haven't done anything substantial with your life or yourself. You let potential slip away. You lost your chance to make something of yourself.

But I usually just use it to mean I've let myself become distracted again.

It's a quote from Dorothy Parker, poet and author of many short stories. Also a founding member of the Algonquin Round Table, aka The Vicious Circle.
"After World War I, Vanity Fair writers and Algonquin regulars Dorothy Parker, Robert Benchley, and Robert E. Sherwood began lunching at The Algonquin. In 1919, they gathered in the Rose Room with some literary friends to welcome back acerbic critic Alexander Woollcott from his service as a war correspondent. It proved so enjoyable that someone suggested it become a daily event. This led to a daily exchange of ideas, opinions, and often-savage wit that has enriched the world's literary life. George S. Kaufman, Heywood Broun, and Edna Ferber were also in this August assembly, which strongly influenced writers like F. Scott Fitzgerald and Ernest Hemingway. Perhaps their greatest contribution was the founding of The New Yorker magazine, which today is free to guests of the hotel." - The Round Table, The Algonquin Hotel


It is one of those mornings where time just gets away from me. I was up at 5:45 am, now suddenly it's 7:21 am and I have to get ready for work.

Note to self: Do not start reading articles in the morning. You will never get any work done because you will always want to chase down the interesting links.

So...last week, when I was packing up the last of the books at the apartment, I came across my copy of A Clockwork Orange. I thought DB, being the vaguely counterculture, rabble rousing 18 year old that he is, might want it.

Me - "Bub! Have you read A Clockwork Orange?"

DB - "Not yet. I've been meaning to."

Me - "Here, you can have this copy."

Dexter (older brother) - "Hey, I'd like to read that too."

DB - Hands the book to his brother, "you can read it first. Just give it back when you're done."

Yep. Those are MY kids!!

This story sounded far more hilarious in my head, but I'm out of time. So here's a picture of DB attending a district 300 school board meeting a few years ago, to join his fellow Youth Labor Committee friends in protesting the proposed severe budget cuts.

Comrade Drakon Mal'chika

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Did you ever...

Did you ever try to take one established household and cram it into another established household? It is more frustrating than you might think. Unless you were thinking it's tear your hair out, "WHY did I think it was a good idea to quit smoking THIS month" frustrating. Then you are correct.

We have a metric shit-ton of surplus stuff.  If your wondering how a metric shit-down converts to pounds, it is precisely however many pounds of surplus stuff we have. Lots and lots of kitchen items, furniture, records...actual vinyl records and also paper records of things you're supposed to keep, paycheck stubs and such. Toys such as Bionicles and myriad action figures from a plethora of movies and cartoons.  Pictures, both framed and in film envelopes and loose.  I have an entire dresser drawer, a fairly deep one, full to the top with photographs plus more in an under bed box. Dating back to the 1980's some of them. Many things to be sold at a yard sale, priced to move.

"How much is this jumbo Pyrex baking dish?"

"A dollar."

"These action figures?"

"Five for a dollar."

"This two-shelf bookshelf?"

"Ah, that's a good solid wood bookshelf. Very sturdy and in excellent condition. That is two dollars."

Bah. Must get ready for work now. Yet another trip to the apartment afterwards. Fourteen more days, fourteen more days, fourteen more days. When this is over I am getting a damn 90 minute massage.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Just when you thought it was safe...

Just when you thought you had run out of hangers and there were no more hangers and you might have to buy more hangers and you thought, "But how did I run out of hangers..."

Oh, my gods! A bazillion hangers! Okay, maybe fifty., let's go with that number. I haven't actually counted, but I'm sure it's more than thirty and probably less than a bazillion. That's totally a real scientific number by the way.  I heard it the other day on NPR. A visiting science dude said that when Julius Caesar blew out his death rattle as he died, he blew out a bazillion carbon atoms and that's why you weigh less in the morning than you did the night before even if you haven't pooped yet. 

So, fifty-seven hangers just hanging in my closet, clothes-less.  Unemployed, as it were. That's still a lot of hangers.  They wait until I leave, then they get all tangled up together like a Roman orgy.

"Et tu, Brute?"
Hangers. You just can't trust them not to murder you in the Senate.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Magical fields and fireflies...

I think I'm finally getting a hang of Blogger's dashboard. I like how I can list my favorite blog reads there and they can sort them for me.

Here is a short entry, something I posted on Facebook last night but wanted to save and find again more easily to perhaps expand it into an longer reflective essay someday.

From late last night about quarter after 10 pm.
We just took a drive in the Jeep, with the top off. It's pretty dark and the stars are out and we drove to Shabbona and the cornfields were silent and green and I could smell the honeysuckle.

That's it. Time to hang with TheMan for a bit before I have to drive to work.

Added at 5:30 pm. The comment controls are still confusing me. I want to delete stuff off the list of comments on my dashboard, thinking I don't need all that stuff listed...but I don't think I can do that. I can only delete it off the list on the dashboard if I also delete the original comment. Swear words.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Only the finest irreverence can be found here...

Now that I’ve determined I want to do this blog writing thing again, I’ve run up against the problem that I don’t have time to blog properly every day, not in the way I truly want to, which is in depth. I need a couple of hours usually to research and type up a good entry.

But sometimes inspiration comes to you in a flash! Or a song! Or a mistaken radio setting!

I have my clock-radio set to use the radio as a wake-up instead of the alarm, so I can claw my way to consciousness every morning listening to the dulcet tones of whoever is talking on NPR at the time I need to get up. But the dial must have gotten bumped because today at six am I awoke to a man singing about how wonderful it was going to be to, “…walk beside you…”

“Aww,” my foggy brain thought of walking beside someone through life… “how sappily adorable. Make it stop, please? Why are they playing this romantic shit on NPR?” But no, NPR had not gone inexplicably saccharine, the radio dial had gotten bumped slightly from 89.5 WNIJ (DeKalb NPR) to 91.1 (Positive, Encouraging, K-Love). I was still too groggy to get up and hit the snooze button or change the dial.

Giraudon/Art Resource, NY
"I've been watching you sleep."
The song continued and singer asked would he stand there in awe or fall on his knees…he was lyrically imagining a meeting with Jesus Christ. I assume after the singer had died; I don’t know if Jesus comes to visit people while they’re still alive. I think the angels are supposed to do that.
So…I’m not a Christian. We’ll get into what my spiritual beliefs are another time. But I do wonder about Jesus, whether he was a real person and really went through all those trials and how did he feel afterwards? What was his favorite food? Did he like travelling or was he all about just getting back to the hotel?  Was he an introvert or an extrovert? Did he miss not having sex or did he actually have sex and they covered it up later?

picture credit: The Passion of The Christ

If you could truly meet Jesus, what would you ask him? Ignore that bit about you not having any knowledge of Hebrew or Aramaic and Jesus not speaking your language…you can communicate, okay? We’re imagining here, don’t piss on my fun. If you could ask him stuff, what would you ask him and why? Be creative please, don’t give me fifteen versions of, ”Dude, what is up with your followers? Some of them are really scary!”

"Tell me, what was it really like to arm-wrestle Satan? Did you guys get a beer afterwards?"

If you think this entry smacks of a article, you are correct! I've read far too much of them lately. Right now I don't care if I'm derivative. But in the interests of being slightly more intellectual here is a vastly more scientific idea of what Jesus may have sort of looked like, from Popular Mechanics. Yeah, I know, just read it.
picture credit: BBC photo library

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Our story up to now...

So I got married. At the courthouse.

Yeah, more about that later what I really want to talk about is OH MY GOD the stuff I am finding in my apartment as I clean out 8 years of pack rat living. Seven bags of trash out of my sons' room so far and that really worries me.  Although, when they came over to help me haul stuff to the car yesterday they were entirely unconcerned over what the bags might contain. True hoarders would be terrified at anything being thrown away, true pack rats would be worried that something important had been tossed with the junk...maybe they're not crazy.  A large portion of it was old papers, broken toys, pencil stubs, broken pens, and all the other things boys think are neat when they're pre-teens. I think they moved the porn so I wouldn't find it. At least...I hope they did. Don't worry, Dexter is 21 and DB is it's okay for them to have porn. I just do not wish to know what kind of porn they prefer.  I'm going to stop saying porn now.

Some random stuff I found:
  • 10 lids to plastic storage boxes, varying sizes.
  • 5 pairs of DB's shoes
  • 4 belts, only one of which fit DB now
  • 4 pairs of headphones
  • 2 wired computer mouses (mice? that sounds weird)
  • A partridge in a pear tree
Okay, that last one is an exaggeration, but honestly, it could've been growing in the closet and we'd never have known.