Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Well crap.

After deciding recently that I couldn't participate in NaNoWriMo this year because of the demands of the new job, I'm having second thoughts.

You're not allowed to study at home in any way. In fact, you're forbidden to even think about work while at home - I had to sign a waiver to that effect. You're not allowed to enter class more than 5 minutes early, either - so no showing up an hour early to brush up.

So it looks like I could try NaNoWriMo!

But I'm not prepared! No story idea, no outline, nothing. Usually I'll do a lot of mental processing on a concept a few weeks before I start a long project. But not this time. Will that turn out for the better? Is no prep a better way for me to go?

We'll see.

Monday, October 30, 2006

Real Life Conversation # 9


Him: Ingenious Nudity? This I gotta see! Ha ha ha!

Her: That's indigenous.

Him: Doe!

Friday, October 27, 2006

coulda shoulda woulda

I'm supposed to go to the post office today, but that will involve closing all the windows. And getting dressed. Surely you understand my dilemma.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

actually looking forward to it

I'm starting my new job on Monday, and I am SO READY to get out of the house. When we first moved from California, I spent the first few months telecommuting and the next couple of months searching for a new job when the work-from-home gig ended.

So I've been sitting at home alone ALL DAY EVERY DAY FOR SIX MONTHS. It might sound like heaven, but it got old very quickly. Since we moved, I don't have any friends in Florida to hang out with - it's just me and the poor harrassed cat for many many hours every day.

I wasn't nearly as prolific with my writing as I hoped I'd be. I wrote a handful of short stories, but nothing I'm very happy with. I think even as a professional novelist, I'd want a part time job just for some human interaction beyond my poor harrassed wife.

I think you need a certain amount of work friction in your life to give you something to vent about - or at least some work-loathing angst to motivate you into your creative hobbies, if just for distraction or to become a professional hobbiest and thereby change your situation.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Psychosis Encouragement Internet Radio

A spoof of the most excellent internet streaming radio site, Pandora.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Available Date: YESTERDAY

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Monday, October 23, 2006

Real Life Conversation # 8

Breakfast at a local home cookin restaurant...

Her: What's wrong?

Him: I'm not sure. This sausage... There's something weird about it.

Her: Is it spoiled?

Him: No, it's just...different. Here, taste this.

Her: That's OK, really.

Him: Come on, it's not bad, I'm just trying to figure out what the flavor is.

Her: (Tastes the sausage) Hm!

Him: What?

Her: I think that's real meat.

Friday, October 20, 2006

An Awful Waste of Space

Sometimes while I'm watching a documentary, a historical event is described, and from somewhere inside me, a voice will say with frustration: Pshh...That's not how it happened. What happened was...

I'm no historical scholar - I know about as much as your typical high school kid. But some factoids drift into my mind, and deep in there an ancestor is shaking his head, sighing heavily, muttering a bit, then going back to sleep.

Past lives? Collective unconscious? Too much imagination? My fundamental Libra-ness craving balanced/alternate viewpoints? A so deeply ingrained need to be contrary just for the sake of conversation that I'll disagree even without anyone else in the room?

Though it also happens during science documentaries on Quantum Physics, which I don't grok in the slightest, but like to think that I do. So unless my ancestors had a deep understanding of String Theory, it's all BS.
Golly!  If you were made of yarn, what color yarn would you be?  Tee Hee!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Oversensitive as a good thing?

I'll eat just about anything, except for all kinds of melon and coconut, which for some reason taste vile. It's likely that my tolerance of just about everything is a result of not having a very sensitive sense of taste.

Cindy on the other hand is highly picky of what she eats, and loves the smell of coffee but not the taste. (She seems to have a very sensitive sense, and I've encouraged her to become a professional taster to no avail).

Yesterday my breakfast was oatmeal, with a couple of fresh Kiwi fruit after. Due to its enzyme action, Kiwi will eat into your mouth - similar to what fresh-cut pineapple will do.

A few hours later, I fixed myself a hot dog with mustard and relish. Eating it was a transcendent experience. It was as if I'd never tasted real mustard or relish before! So tangy and zippy and flavorful! The flavors were so strong that they actually hurt a bit. It wasn't that the ingredients were gourmet - they were the boring, normal products I've eaten a hundred times. It was my over-sensitive mouth.

I wonder if this sensitivity could be used in some way - you'd eat a specific appetizer which would prime your mouth for the meal to follow. Since I don't know anything about real cooking, it's likely such a practice has been around for a thousand years or so.

I wonder - if I could really taste most of the food I eat, how much of it would taste horrible?

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Say What?

I've been misreading a lot of things over the past week. I either need glasses or an exorcism... Both?

"report fisting"
(it was actually "phishing", but at first I wondered why Gmail was so concerned about fisting as to post a link in my email)

endangered species fetish high prices on black market

catered party toys - great for corporate gatherings!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Word Verification? ? ?

The word verification functionality for posting comments doesn't seem to be going anywhere... When it was first introduced, I'd hoped that it would soon be upgraded - but no sign of that yet.

Such as:

a) When I'm logged in to Blogger, why do I have to perform a word verification check to comment ON MY OWN BLOG? I think I can trust me not to post spam. Probably.

b) I have a certain group who regularly comment on my blog, and most other blogs are the same. Why isn't there a way to add "Trusted Pals" to your blog settings, so those follks who comment all the time don't have to bother with word verification?

Maybe this is solved in the Beta? If so, I haven't seen any sign of it.

Monday, October 16, 2006

What the...?

Sunday afternoon, as we were enjoying the sunset on the patio, Cindy pointed out a twisted, freaky something in the grill of the air conditioner. I couldn't bring myself to get too close or to touch it, but I took a whole slew of pics.

Any idea what the hell this is? A dead gecko? A twisted bit of twig? A mummified frog? Help! My vote is for 'alien critter'.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

2 NaNoWriMo's Per Year?

My new job starts October 30th, just in time to screw up my hopes for NaNoWriMo. The first 6 weeks at the job will be training classes, and I'll want to spend my off-time studying and getting lots of rest.

A 1666.66 word session (one day's progress, breaking 50,000 words into 30 days) usually takes me about 3 hours, if it's any good at all. Training periods are not a time for burning the midnight oil, so unless the training is very easy, I soak it all up like a sponge, and I have nothing but free time at home, I'm gonna have to skip NaNoWriMo this year, damn it.

I've spent 99% of my working life jumping from one small company to another, and it was great at the time, but not a good way to build a career. I'll probably stay with big corporations from here on out (just for the next 30 years or so...).

Hmn, I wonder if the FX network would be interested in doing NaNoWriMo as a 30 Days episode? Probably not interesting enough, compared to most of their topics.

In the past, Cindy has pointed out that November is a bad month for a lot of people (such as, those in retail) and that there should be a NaNoWriMo in the Spring, as well. It's a good idea, what can we do to make it happen?

Kitty Baby!

Her favorite is when I munch her tummy.
She loves it when I do this. She loves it so much.

Friday, October 13, 2006


What do you folks know about online college courses? Any experience with them? The new job offers lots of tuition reimbursement, and I'd be silly not to take advantage of it.

What sort of criteria should I look for when researching?

Any high-quality sites come to mind?

Thursday, October 12, 2006

a # of unrelated thoughts

Help me, internet!

There are 3 things troubling me lately, and I don't know of an efficient way to look them up:

1) What is it called, where those fat men put a giant top hat over their head and shoulders, prance around with no shirt on, with eyes and a creepy mouth painted on their torso? It's some kind of performance piece, but I could not find it with a google search.

2) What is it called, when you just put two eggs in the skillet and simply stir them up as they cook? It's like scrambled eggs, but without the proper ingredients and mixing. For lack of a better term, I'm calling it "Lazy Man's Scramble".


SquirrleyMojo claims I performed a
Mise en scène in my last post. Since I did...that thing she said I did... without knowing what it is, that must mean I be genius. Yes, brilliant am me. Although... When your writing progresses to the point when it is best described using French terminology, (roman à clef, avant-garde, merde) it might be a good sign you've gotten too pretentious.

Or German terms, for that matter... (with the possible exception of farfignugon) - -

3) Yes, I know that I misspelled 'farfignugon' - can anyone clue me in on the correct spelling? A gold star awaits you.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

On the way to the drug test...

The South is a lovely place, and the people couldn't be sweeter.

...But when you're trying to find a new address for somewhere you've never been before, and you really really need to pee, have to need to pee, can't pee until they hand you that special cup, but that can't happen till you find the medical building how horribly overgrown all the foliage is really hits you.

For those of you who don't know, Florida is a barely-contained jungle. Without what little maintenance that goes on, the whole state would be swallowed up in a year or less. And by maintenance, I mean Mother Nature, in the form of hurricanes knocking down trees.

Damn, people - it's called pruning. And no, that's not a term for canning prunes.

a typical Floridian shopping center

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Arbeit 3: This Time It's Personnel

I got the job! I'll once again be a contributing member of the household! No more cooking breakfasts or washing laundries for me!

Bwa ha ha ha ha!!

My training will begin October 30ish, pending the results of my drug test. Unless my 'Raisins & Spice' oatmeal has something freaky in it, I'm good to go!

Thanks again for all the positive energies y'all sent my way!

Arbeit Update

Thanks for the well-wishings, all!

I just got home from the "assessment testing", which was all automated/taken using a PC. I thought I did okay, except for running out of time on a timed test and only getting half of it completed. I took my time and made sure all the questions I did answer were correct. Most of em.

I must have done all right, because they want me back for an interview with an actual human at 2pm today.

Also! While I was taking my assessment test, I got a call for a completely different job. Nothing for two months, and now two calls in as many days?? Whaa?

Further updates as they hit the fan.


I have a job interview Tuesday at 8:30am! You've never heard of the company, but my research indicates they are great.

I'd like to take a moment to mention the fact that 100% of the interviews I've had resulted in being hired. Oh yeah baby! Spotless record!

I'll let you all know how it turns out.

Monday, October 09, 2006


We moved into this apartment complex in July, and were tickled pink about having a washer and dryer in the new apartment - for the past 8 years, we've been schlepping our dirty laundry to a laundromat (or to the apt complex laundry room, not much better).

It's a stacked unit, with the washer below and the dryer above. I've never used such a unit before, but hey how hard is it? Laundry science is pretty intuitive. Early on, Cindy remarked "Does this have a lint trap?"

Me: "Yeah, I didn't see one. I guess it's just that high-tech. I think that button on the right makes cappuccino."

(I should mention that my glee for having an in-unit washer/dryer has been diminished lately, since it seems to take longer to dry the clothes every time. This sucks! I'm fickle that way. If you take 3 hours to dry one load of clothes, I'll turn on ya).

Today I was doing laundry, and suddenly the dryer started making a horrendous sound, as if I were fluff-drying pots and pans. I opened the dryer door to discover some sort of hatch-cover had come off from the inside of the dryer.

Well what do you know, it was the cover for the lint-trap! The trap itself had become so full that it forced the cover off. Oops. I pulled most of the lint out in one giant mass - I could see the lines of sandy colored lint where I'd washed the sheets every few weeks, almost like an archaeological view of our laundry habits. I also dug out big fistfuls of lint that had been unable to congeal into the mother-load.

I'm posting these pics for educational purposes - I am not proud of being such a moron. I'm just lucky it didn't catch on fire.

In my defense, the dryer is in a closet, and it's totally dark back in there

This is a lint trap. It might not look like one, but it is. See the finger-grabby holes? Yeah. Don't be a moron like me. .

I wonder if there's a way to turn lint back into clothing.  Some kind of lint-printer.

Oh, I should mention that the dryer works beautifully when it's not choked with enough lint to suffocate a water buffalo.


Sadly, today was not my first laundry calamity - there have been others.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Jobs I Could Totally Do

I'm still looking for a job, and spend an unfortunate amount of time cruising the job posting web sites. It's troubling how poorly written most job opening blurbs are, and how many words are incorrectly spelled.

For some reason, many of them feel compelled to start out by asking you "Are you ready for an exciting career move?" and spend the next 500 words describing the history of their company. Who cares?

Also, they seem so insistent on something called a "degree".

I could totally do these jobs:

Cyberknife Therapist
"Well it seems you're putting too much pressure on yourself. You're just a cyberknife, what do they expect? I think you spend too much time bolted to your steel frame. You spend every day grounded to the generator. Get out, go to the park. Adopt a kitten."

Speech Pathologist
This seems to be where political speeches go after they die. The speech is already dead, right? I'd just take my time, dig around in there with a red pen. I could start out with city councilmen, and work my way up.

Park Ranger
Oh I can range, baby! In a park even.

I know iron pyrite, like on sight. It looks like gold, but brother, it ain't gold.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Nobel Prize in Breakfast Science

5:00am: Making breakfast. In the dark. Sleepy.

5:15am: Serve breakfast. In the mostly dark.

5:30am: Clear breakfast dishes. Still dark. (Still sleepy)

5:32am: Discover plastic magnet. Plastic that clings to other plastic like a magnet. This is amazing! This invention might just be worth a bit of cash, a medal or two, and a trophy wench or three.

5:33am: Call Stephen Hawking and Bill Nye to gloat. (They were the only scientists conveniently on my speed-dial).

5:34am: Oops, it was just sticky with syrup. My bad.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Real Life Conversation # 7

Overheard at the Sears Eye Care Center:

Guy: "It's awful. She was diagnosed with Immaculate Degeneration."

Girl: "Diagnosed with what now?"

Guy: "Uh, Immaculate..."

Girl: "Could it be macular?"

Guy: "Whatever."

Girl: "Your way makes me think of a dead nun or a virgin with leprosy."

Guy: "Whatever. She has some vision problems, OK?"

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Like, Eeeeew

One of the civilized things my darling wife has taught me is to check the expiration date on the groceries I'm about to purchase and devour in the car on the way home.

In my bachelor days, I'd wolf something down, then as I was tossing the container in the trash, I'd discover that my just-eaten grub had expired two weeks before. Oops!

So now I check almost every item before I put it in the cart - lately I've been dismayed by the amount of expired food I've come across. What to do with it? I've been putting the stuff back on the shelf, hoping the store's staff will do their jobs.

But I go to the store the next week and find the same expired item still on the shelf. I'm tempted to just go to the grocery for the express purpose of filling up a cart (or three) with expired products, dragging them up to the front and asking to see the manager.

"Hi, all of this stuff is expired. Oh, and did I mention, the Channel 4 News Team is on their way. Public health issue, you know."

I've never worked in a grocery store... What would the manager do?

Would this be a righteous act or the cry for help of a bored, unemployed jerk?

Monday, October 02, 2006


I love the Aflac commercials! The duck is so earnest, so energetic and happy.

Here's a link to the Aflac commercials page. In the latest commercial, the duck is gleefully shopping for groceries in some sterile futuristic store.