Sunday, February 27, 2005

Yeah, but John, if The Pirates of the Caribbean breaks down the pirates don't eat the tourists.

So tired of things breaking down.

The phone line. The car. The sliding glass door. The lawnmower. The roof leaking. Whatever else. God damn it, we just lost connection again.

We watched the Oscars. Boringly adequeate. I'd type up commentary on it, but I doubt that this'll go through on the first go 'round anyway.

The girls have become very interested in dinosaurs lately. I was thinking about those terrible lizards, and how there were so many different varieties of dinosaur. T-rex, triceratops, brachiosaurus, shantungosaurus, and so on. That's a hell of a lot of evolution. Which boils down to the fact that the dinosaurs had a heck of a lot of sex. Awesome! Dinosaur sex.

Saturday, February 26, 2005

z i'm sleeping zzzzzz

Title provided by my first-born.

I wish I could remember my dreams from last night better. I do know that they were interesting. The part I do recall: Me and five or six dream people were flying in an airplane over a city. The pilot was flying really low - skimming over telephone wires and the roofs of houses low - and it was somewhat intense on whether we'd survive or not.

While that was going on, there were five or six helicopters circling above us. The pilots of the copters were announcing over bullhorns that they were with the FAA, and we were in violation of some blahblahlaw. (Hee!) Half of the people in the plane were trying to convince the pilot to land, so we could surrender to the authorities. The other half of us were rooting the pilot on.

[shrug]

In other news, Saren has been super interested in blogging lately. She's constantly watching over my shoulder, and is wanting to make entires herself. She also asked me today when we'd do another Ape10. Yay! She's into it again! Which means that a new episode - or, rather, the unfinished, much long forgotten about episode The Boy Who Cried LION - will be posted soonish. [up]

It was a nice (read: no rain, and a high of about 60) day outside today, so I figured I'd mow the lawn. The lawnmower, however, had other plans. I guess when we have money again, we'll have to purchase a new mower. One that doesn't cause physical injury to folks trying to start it. (Don't worry, I still have all ten fingers. I simply scraped some skin off my index finger of my right hand while trying to get the engine started.)

Orpheus (sp?) was on today. We watched part of it and Steph commented, "This such a lame show." I'm inclined to agree. That was a pretty weak (one might say "indecent") episode. Poor Season 4.

We watched Monty Python and the Holy Grail last night. Comedy comedy! [/haven't used that line in ages] Saren said that the ending was "crazy". Also - anytime anyone says that "violence is never funny" needs to watch Sir Lancelot's scene at the wedding.

Next up is either Bend it Like Beckham or Monty Python's Life of Brian.

Tomorrow the Academy Awards are on. Yawn! Seriously, this is like the first Oscar show in 10 years that I have no interest in seeing. Well, no, that's not entirely true. My interest is piqued in regard to Chris Rock. But I really could not care any less when it comes to the nominees for anything. Honestly, I can't even name all five nominees for Best Picture. The jury is still out on if we'll watch it still or not.

Speaking of the Oscars, I heard someone say that it has never rained (in California) during the Oscars. Is that true? I should Snopes/Google it up. People say all kinds of things that aren't true. Stupid not truth sayers. The problem is that they sound true. Like, "Every president ever elected has been the first born". Sounds true! But it's not.

Our imaginary savings from Smith's has now reached a whopping $114.22. Woohoo! And my word total for this week (not including this post) is 2,156 words. Woohoo! And now I'm going to finish typing this and add some more. Woohoo!

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
19,380 / 200,005
(9.0%)

Friday, February 25, 2005

In descent

So I was at work today and I went to the FCC website. (For work related reasons, actually.) Some of the things that I discovered there were interesting, but I'm on a bit of a time restraint right now, so I'll discuss them at a later date.

But! I saw something that I found particularly noteworthy. So I'm blogging about it. (I also considered posting it at the WD. But I checked, and of course, someone beat me to it.)

It seems that the episode of Angel entitled Destiny recieved some complaints to the FCC for being indecent. The complaints were submitted by someone from the Parents Television Council (the PTC) - which is a group that never ceases to infuriate me. The PTC is, in essence, a Holier Than Thou group that has a lot of free time. Every year they issue a list of the "worst television programs" based on the amount of material in the shows that are "offensive", and what time they are broadcast. Buffy made the list a few years in a row. And I'm sure Angel was on the list, too. Oddly they've never included the Nightly News. Huh.

So, anyway, the PTC took offense to some scenes in Destiny and filed a complaint with the FCC. And today, after reviewing the tapes, the FCC decreed that, nope, that episode of Angel is not indecent.

Ha!!

The full report, in all it's legalise can be found here. (It's a PDF file, so make sure you're all Acrobatic.)

Some thoughts I have from looking over that file:

What is "inter alia"? I suppose I should google it up, but I dont' have time to do it right now.

The episode aired November 19th. The Complaint letter was dated December 4th. Why the delay? If the letter writer was so offended by the content of Angel, wouldn't it make sense that she would write it that day? Or, you know, maybe the next morning. But three weeks later? I suppose maybe it could be argued that she was composing the letter, making sure that it would be perfect, but the FCC itself says: "Filing a complaint with the FCC is easy." ([eyebrow]) so I don't think that she has that as an excuse. No, I think the PTC sat around and watched the scenes multiple times, you know, to make sure that it was offensive.

Sadly, even though the e-document says that the letter is attached, I couldn't find it. I'd be interested in reading the actual wording of the complaint.

Lastly, if you're going to be offended by an episode of Angel, I think that the one to pick is The Girl in Question. Now that was offensive.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

45% Less Titled

I couldn't come up with a suitable title, because I don't know exactly what to blog about.

Instead, I'll throw them all together. Which means I should've titled this "Potpourri", just like on Jeopardy!. Dude. Has Jeopardy! ever had potpourri as an actual category? That would be confusingly funny.

So, random things I've thought about blogging about:

While looking at one of our photo albums today, I nearly burst into tears. Saren used to be so small. She was tiny!! And now, she's so independent and headstrong. And the time just vanished like smoke. What the fuck, man? 7 and a half years ago, she fit into the cradle of my arms, just as Irina does now. That feels like it was not that long ago at all. Too fast. Too, too fast.

When I think about the amount of money we've spent on fast food in the past week, it makes my brain (and stomach and heart and wallet) hurt.

Two radio thoughts:

1)AM Radio was designed, I believe with the sole purpose of pissing people off. What a complete waste.
2) While driving around today, I switched to NPR and listened to a discussion about alternative fuels. It was kinda refreshing to hear intelligent conversation about the fact that fossil fuels aren't going to last forever! And to know that there are people out there who are trying to get the renewable fuel source bandwagon rolling.


It's been mentioned by many other people before, but Buffy really did have a racist streak to it a mile wide. Granted, it was still an entertaining show and all, but sheesh.

Speaking of show's themes: Star Trek (the original series, and Next Generation...and Voyager, and possibly Enterprise, although I didn't watch that so I can't pass judgement on it) is a very pro-industrial-military complex program. Scary vision of the future indeed.

I wonder if Lost will end up being an anti-civilization based show. Time will tell, I suppose. Meh. I guess if I really watned to, I could find anti-civ messages in just about anything. You know, like Jesus. (It's not always about Jesus!) [although, really, Jesus was pretty anti-civ. I mean, dude, he was a hippie.]

What else? Um. I know I had several other things that were on my mind. Where'd they go?

Hmm. I guess that's all. I know that as soon as I post this (assuming it goes through), I'll remember and/or think of about thirty other things to say. That's the way of the world, I guess.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

This title should be something about The Cheat.

See, cuz I'm cheating to make it. I'm typing it up in WordPad - which I keep wanting to call WordPat - and will post it later with the timestamp all backdated.

Why? Because our internet connection is craptacular! A few weeks back - pre-Irina, actually, which is hard to believe, but anyway - I called Sprint (aka THE DEVIL) and told them that we were having difficulties with our phone line: Incoming calls were being cut off mid-ring, there was a lot of static on the line when we did make calls, etc. The only thing that was consistently working was our internet connection. (Yay!)

I think i may've already blogged about this, but since I can't go online and check...

Anyway. I called them on, like, Monday, January 31stth. They said they'd be out sometime between then and Friday at 7pm. (Yeah. Vague.)

So Friday rolls around, and around 4pm the Sprint guy shows up, walked around our house, found a wire outside that was all broken, and replaced it. And things were great! We got phone calls, there was no more static, P@ considered rethinking his evaluation of how evil Sprint is.

And then, about a week ago, the phone rang, and mid-ring, it stopped.

So, long story short (too late), the problems with our phone line are back. And with a vengence.Because now, in addition to phone calls being interrupted, we can't get online. We can't get online!!!!!

I'm 98% sure that it's all due to a broken-ish wire inside our house - behind the couch - which (and here's the kicker) I showed to the Sprint guy when he was here. His response at the time was: "Oh, no, it couldn't be that. Don't worry about it."

Mm-hmm.

So, yeah, I'll be calling Satan tomorrow. Again. And then waiting. In the meantime, I'll do these fake-blog updates, and then post a hell of a lot of backdated entries.

2/22/05 10:15pm


...or, you know, not. Since I got the connection working at this time. But, whatev. Still got to contact Evil, Inc. and have them investigate the phone line. Better stock up on goat's blood. Lord knows it's gonna cost me somehow.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Feer and low things in Laws Vegas

I should disclaim that I am UTP@. There. You have been warned. Warn. Ed.

I awoke at 65:30 this afternomroning. THat was so taht I could take the CAT Bus to work, so that the STeph could ckeep thecar, which she did. And I did. Take the bus, that is. I ddi not, however, sing the "BUs sogn" wile I did it.

But on the birght side, nobody spoke to me. Hooray! I had feared taht I would be forced to interact while partaking in public transportaiotn. But it was unfounded. THankfuly. Why do people strike conversations with complete strangers? Is it lonliness? I think that it probbaly is. Or at least a large part of it. Which is unbelievably depressing. Stupid lonliness. Stupid human condition.

Anyway, yeah, no people talking to me. Everyone kept to themselves, and or discussed amongst themselves. Excpet for the Crazy Guy that was tlaking to the Bus Driver when I first got on. (Their conversation was about the changing weateher patterns [see? Even the crazy people are starting to take notice!] and how great it would be for a tornado to strike the Las Vegas Strip, demolishing casinos along the way.)

What else? Um. The major lesson I learned about the bus is that I need to wear different shoes next time. My work shoes are not designed for walking - so that's just what they'll not do! Heee. I ended up with a blister on my ankle of my left food. Ouch.

The Steph and the girls went ot the Natural History Muesum with the homeschooling group today. It sounds like they had a good time. For waht's it's worth, I wreally wish I could've gone iwth them. I do miss having my mornings free to spend with them. Of cours,e having the nights home so I can have dinners is nice, too. Grass is always geener, blah blah blah.

Let's see, what else? I know I had more to blog about. Hrm. I cut out a boob at work today. And a butt! The breast belong to Teri Hatcher, the butt was ...I don't know who she was. But if you watch Rocky IV, you'll see it. Unless, of course, you watch that movie as it airs on our stations hiere in Las Vegas. [rolldoh]

The Teri Hatcher edit? Awesome. The Rocky edit? Ehhh...not so great. But it was my first real go at it, so I'm willing to cut myself some slack. Also, in the end, all that raelly matters is that the innocent, innocent children don't see a female body part. Right? Right.

I cna't beleive that it's already 8:47pm. It feels lso much later.

Oh. The title, of course, relates to the fact taht Hunter Thomspon has shuffled off the mortal coil. I've not seen the movie, but now I kinda want to. Morbid? Maybe.

Done now.

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Is tomorrow Liar's Day?

No, wait, that's April 1st, not President's Day. Although, you know, presidents do lie. (It's that whole "being human" thing that does it to them.) Even "Honest" Abe, and George "I Can Not Tell A Lie" Washington. Oddly enough, the only president I can think of that has never told a lie is George W. Bush.

Ahem.

But, yeah, tomorrow, Feb. 21st, is President's Day. Which means that many stores will have special sales. Because ...so many presidents like to shop? And they all like to save money. I mean, really, listen to them. They all go on and on and on about the budget, so I suppose it makes sense that there would be sales on their day.

My real point, though, is that once upon a time, the celebration was known as Washington's Birthday and Lincoln's Birthday. We had two days. Now, though, they've combined them into one. It's wrong! WRONG!! People complain about Xmas being all commercialized, and how we forget that Jesus is the reason for the season. But what about President's Day? Huh? I mean, if Abraham Lincoln hadn't been born in a manger, and then crucified on a cherry tree chopped down by George Washington after Rutherford B. Hayes sold him out for 30 pieces of silver, where would be? I'll tell you where we'd be - we'd be in America.
But it would be an America that didn't have President's Day! And that would mean that Toyota wouldn't have an excuse for selling overpriced vehicles at a slightly lower cost. And that, my friends, is no America I want to live in.

I think we need a catchy slogan, similar to the "Jesus is the reason for the season" tagline used by the Christians, you know, to help people remember that the day is not just for going out to purchase discounted mattresses, it's also to honor the rich white men that have done so much for us (and for the world) over these thousands of years. Maybe something like: "Bush is the Push for the Mush" or "The Prez sayz: 'Go Shop!'" I don't know. Maybe I'll write Bush, and have him create a committee to create a slogan.

Of course, they would have to wait until Tuesday to start on it. Monday is a holiday, ya know.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Liner notes, etc.

Wow. So much happened today to blog about, but I have already pre-determined what today's entry would be. So, quickly:

Got a phone call from Mike. That was awesome. He's doing really well, and offered (jokingly...mostly) a job to me in Minnesota that pays like almost double what I'm making now.

We heard back from one of the bills we entered on the Where's George? site. (wheresgeorge.com) Cool! The dollar had only traveled 11 miles, but still, it was exciting to finally get a response. Yay for money tracking!

Um. I guess that was pretty much all. Doh. I thought there was more to my day, but apparently not.

Luckily I've got that pre-determined blog entry to fall back upon, huh?

Okay. So, one year ago today I went and identified all the song lyrics I'd used as blog titles on my blog. I figured, since then, I've used several other songs, so now I'll ID those. Maybe every Feb. 17th I'll update this. It'll be a gimmick. Gimmick!!!!

Away we go...

"Our hearts pump dust and our hairs all gray" on Feb. 18th, 2004, is from Tiny Cities Made of Ashes by Modest Mouse

"Here's a truck stop instead of St. Peter's" on Feb. 22nd, 2004, is from Man on the Moon by REM

"Nowhere Man" on Mar. 2nd, 2004, is from Nowhere Man by the Beatles

"You better watch out, because I'm about to say 'Fuck'!" on Mar. 16th, 2004, is from Rockin' the Suburbs by Ben Folds

"....I'm getting older too." on Mar. 24th, 2004, is from Landslide by Fleetwood Mac (also covered by the Smashing Pumpkins)

"I want Charles in charge of my days and my nights." on Apr. 2nd, 2004, is from Charles in Charge by Timothy Thompson

"A three hour tour. A three. hour. tour." on Apr. 5th, 2004, is from the Gilligan's Island theme song, which I am too lazy to google up to see who wrote it.

"Will you tell me what you saw and I'll tell you what you missed" on May 1st, 2004, is from Ocean Breathes Salty by Modest Mouse

"So they rode on ahead on their furry donkey." on May 8th, 2004, is from Happy Jack by The Who

"It's a nice day to start again." on June 1st, 2004, is from White Wedding by Billy Idol

"Bouncy, trouncy, flouncy, pouncy fun fun fun fun fun!" on June 8th, 2004, is from The Wonderful Things About Tiggers by Tigger

"Meet the new boss, same as the old boss." on June 9th, 2004, is from Won't Get Fooled Again by The Who

"Ch-ch-ch-changes" on June 13th, 2004, is from Changes by David Bowie

"you're older than you've ever been" on June 14th, 2004, is from Older by They Might Be Giants

"What the world needs now..." on June 15th, 2004, is from What the World Needs Now is Love by ...like, everyone on the freaking planet. I don't know who did the original. It's also from Teen Angst (What the World Needs Now) by Cracker

"You promised me the ending would be clear" on Sep. 7th, 2004, is from Bring Me The Disco King by David Bowie

"Ever since we said it, he went and took the credit" on Sep. 10th, 2004, is from Monkey to Man by Elvis Costello

"It's kickin' in! Yeah! It's kickin' in! Yeah! It's kickin' in! YEAH YEAH YEAH YEAH YEAH!" on Sep. 16th, 2004, is from It's Kickin' In by They Might Be Giants

"Life is what happens when you're busy making other plans" on Oct. 9th, 2004, is from Beautiful Boy by John Lennon

"Stop and smell the smoke" on Oct. 19th, 2004, is from Smoke by Ben Folds

"Once more, with feeling." on Nov. 2nd, 2004, is from that Buffy musical thingy. ;)

"....and there's nothing on." on Nov. 17th, 2004, is from 57 Channels (and nothin' on) by Bruce Springsteen

"What a drag it is getting old." on Nov. 20th, 2004, is from Mother's Little Helper by the Rolling Stones

It's been a hard day's night. on Nov. 30th, 2004, is from Hard Day's Night by The Beatles

Whoa, I ....I...I'm still alive. on Dec. 12th, 2004, is from Alive by Pearl Jam

"Tale as old as time." on Jan. 19th, 2005, is from Beauty and the Beast

"Goddamn right, it's a beautiful day!" on Feb. 1st, 2005, is from the hidden track on the Eels album that I forget the name of right now.

"We can be happy underground" on Feb. 7th, 2005, is from Underground by Ben Folds

"Time keeps on slippin, slippin', slippin' ...into the future" on Feb. 8th, 2005, is from Fly Like an Eagle by Steve Miller


And, partial credit entries. Things that weren't exactly lyrics, but were kinda sorta influenced by them:



"The groove? It's in the heart." on Mar. 6th, 2004, gets (Pepsi?) partial credit! for being derived from Groove is in the Heart by Dee-Lite

"I would drive 500 miles. And I would drive 500 more." on June 2nd, 2004, gets (Pepsi?) partial credit! for being derived from I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles) by the Proclaimers

"Our news turns one today, oh boy" on Oct. 13th, 2004, gets partial credit for being derived from A Day in the Life by the Beatles

Boxing (Day)'s been good to me, Howard. on Dec. 26th, 2004, gets partial credit for being derived from Boxing by Ben Folds

Clouds in my synapses on Jan. 11th, 2005, gets partial credit for being derived from You're So Vain by Carly Simon

I used to blog a little, but a little wouldn't do it, so the little got more and more. on Feb. 14th, gets partial credit for being derived from Mister Brownstone by Guns 'n' Roses


Whew! I think the thing I learned from this is to make sure I only do it once a year. And to use less song lyrics as titles.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Robot Soldiers Will Fight For Us

Well, that's good news!

But the question remains - fight whom? Fight whom? I can only hope that it's something as equally cool as Robot Soldiers. Like Robot Terrorists. Or Space Pirate Monkey Shrimp....Dogs. Or something. Ehh. I guess it doesn't really matter. Robot Soldiers fighting anything would be dramatic and watchable, I suppose.

Speaking of AOL Headline News, the Will Flu Shots Save Your Life? pic looks a lot like Locke. I don't think it's him, but there is a resemblance.

Speaking of Lost, it's spoiler time!

[Begin spoiler for -Outlaws, even though I thought the episode should've been called I Never or Boared Now. And, yeah, this will only be of interest to maybe four people who actually watch the show, but that's part of the allure of being elitist highlight to view]
Heeeeeeeee! The boar hates Sawyer!! Man, I hope that boar becomes a regular. Anyone that makes Sawyer's life miserable deserves to stick around.
It's interesting that Sawyer is like the Spike of this show. Let's hope when the time comes, the writers do the right thing, and actually kill him off. (Don't get me wrong, I don't have a Sawyer-hate thing going on. I hope that when the time comes, the writers will kill any character off. Um...except for Locke. Or Hurley. Because those two make the show. Especially Locke.)

So, anywhat, this was written by Drew Goddard, who was, like, some great writer for Buffy or something? To his credit, I wasn't sure what way Sawyer's storyline was going to go until the end, and call me short-sighted, but I honestly didn't see the twist coming.

But the Sawyer backstory wasn't the best part of this episode. The best part was the island-action. Locke's story was awesome. And then his smile....man. As the Steph said in awe after he finished, "Man, Locke is mysterious."

ALso! They mentioned Fate like a gabillion times. I'm fairly certain I heard Amy squeal everytime they did. (Amy has a theory that the show is all about fate.)

Also also - I've been proven wrong. I said to Steph earlier this week, "It's funny how everyone calls Locke 'Locke', except for Dr. Jack, who calls him 'John'."
So, now it's everyone calls him 'Locke' except for Dr. Jack and Criminal Kate. I don't know what it means, but it must mean something.

Lastly - the interaction between the islanders pre-crash is growing. Thus far it's all involved Sawyer, though. Hmmmmm.
[end spoiler]

I know I had something to talk about other than this week's episode of Lost. But what was it?

I watched Icebreaker at work today, and thought of bettie while doing so. (I bet she can tell me why! [wink])

um.

In conclusion, Conclusion.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Seven point five.

Dear Jebus, where does the time go?

[heart] forever, dear. [heart] forever.

Wha huh what?

Very tired. Not really having anything to say.

Imaginary savings are now up to $105.40. We could buy an imaginary GameCube!

There's a wrapper for a Butterfinger near the computer, and I can see that among the ingredients is something called Monoglycerides. I don't know what those are! Also, TBHQ and Citric Acid, which, they tell me in parenthesis, has been added to preserve freshness. There's also Ground Roasted Peanuts. Well, there ya go. Something healthy.

I may do a Television Without Pity style recap of a movie tomorrow. Maybe. It depends on a) how tired I am and b) if I'm feeling up to it. Which, you know, is the same as "a", but ...different.

Um.

It's only Tuesday. This week is going by very slowly.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Fingerprintless

As I was filling up the bathtub for the girls, I was thinking about my last entry, and in particular, the fingerprint and evolution aspects.

Since my thoughts still aren't fully formed - or at least not in a way that flows naturally - I'll simply do a transfer of my thoughts from grey matter to white screen.

In the green, when people can genetically engineer their children, I bet someone creates a child that has no fingerprints.

Hey, that would be a good idea if you were to genetically engineer a child to grow up to be a criminal. Oooh. I wonder what other traits you would give to an in utero person that you wanted to grow up to become an antilaw person. There's a story idea there. Or at least a character idea. I should blog this.


I also had a tangent thought that some goody-two shoes (but how good are they, really, if they're genetically engineering a human being?) would 'build' a perfect police officer child, you know, to counter the perfect thief. And then, in the story, they'd do the whole chase each other thing that is the cornerstone of Hollywood movies. And, maybe they'd fall in love. Ahh.

In other news, I've blogged over 500 words today, and two different entries. If I can maintain this pace for the remainder of the year (ha!!), I'll achieve my goal!

I used to blog a little, but a little wouldn't do it, so the little got more and more.

Even though it's only Monday (tell me why - I don't like Mondays!), it feels like Tuesday (Dawn must be in trouble). And I'm slightly having a case of the UTP@.

At work today I screened (that's the technical jargon for viewing or watching or wasting two hours of one's life) the movie The Fantasticks. I thought of CassyLee while I was watching it, because it's a musical, and I know that of all the P@riots out there, she'd be the one who would've most likely have seen it. Oh, and Kirk, because he's seen a buttload of movies.

Also, this movie had Joel Grey. Buffy connection! Joel Grey reminds me of Norman Bates, though. Not Anthony Perkins, but Norman Bates. Everytime he was Grey was onscreen, I expected him to begin talking to his dead mother. And, yes, I've confirmed - yet again - that my brain is indeed a very strange place.

Oh, so, The Fantasticks. It totally was one of the worst musicals I've ever seen. Worse, even, then...well, no, I generally like every musical. This one, though, was just lackluster. I enjoyed maybe 40% of the songs, and couldn't tolerate the daughter at all. I don't know why, exactly, she just bugged me.

On the upside, though, there was no nudity or profanity to remove. So, there ya go.

I have several emails that I need to respond to. And comments. And I want to continue working on my story. But I'm going to wash dishes instead of doing any of those things. Because the dishes need to be done. Dude. Heh.

I wonder if I should count this entry on the 17th. Hmm. I think I'll give it (Pepsi?) partial credit.

Tomorrow is payday, finally. Better, though, will be the payday on the 28th, when the raise (from the start of the year) will take effect, along with the retroactive pay that goes along with it. Yahoo! Money.

My blog ID, according to the url up top of the screen is 3869370. I'm very tempted to call that phone number and see who answers. Maybe I will do that some day from the safety of work. I'll report on what happens.

The pizza was not heart shaped, sadly.

I have several blog topics, but not the focus (bofus?!) to actually follow through. Eventually, I suppose.

You know what's odd? Fingerprints. I think I may have discussed this with the Jupe previously. And/or the Steph. But anyway. Fingerprints don't truly serve any evolutionary function, do they? I mean, yeah, I suppose they provide a minimal amount of grip for picking things up. But why should everyone's fingerprints be unique? That's just weird. It's as though evolution were providing CSI workers with ...ammuntion for capturing criminals. But that's ..wrong. Man, my brain is not working right. Suffice to say that fingerprints are the latest piece of (ancedotal?) evidence toward the case that evolution has/had someone behind it all. [/waht?]

Speaking of whatever I'm thinking about right now, hubris is funny. Or tragic, perhaps. (Originally typed - prehaps. Hee. "prehaps". And posthaps! I truly am amusing myself to death tonight) But, yeah, the fact that our station has some movie contracts with certain distributors that end in 2022 makes me simultaneosly amsued and bemused. Maybe even demused. (Not cemused, though. I'm not average. [no, I'm really not. Count for yourself.])

I do believe I mentioned doing dishes several paragraphs up. I think I ought to do that now.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

Recently viewed movies:

Netflix is keen.

Here's a list of the movies we've watched in the past week or so.

The School of Rock - Decent enough. Jack Black isn't my favorite comedian, but I did find myself laughing several times during the film. The best moment though, was delivered by Joan Cusack.

Amélie - Mmmm...quirky French film. I can totally see why Simon says this is his favorite movie. Humor, humanity, and just a very unique way of looking at life. [up]

love actually - I didn't think I'd like this...but guess what, I did! [grin] I'm glad that I opted to watch it with Steph rather than go online. The internet is far less interesting lately than a 2 1/2 hour romantic comedy. (Take that, world wide web!)

Interesting tidbit about love actually - after it was over, we watched the deleted scenes, and there was a story about a lesbian couple. And one of them dies. In their defense, it was deleted, but still.

Lost in Translation - BORING! We've only watched an hour of this, which means there's 30 minutes remaining, but good Christ it's slow. I doubt we'll finish it.

In fact, we're always taking movie suggestions.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Story - take two.

Let's try this again, see if it actually works this time.

I've been wanting to post this for a while. Back in 2003 when I partook in NaNoWriMo, I did start writing. While I didn't finish the project, what I had was ...well, okay. I finally transferred it from notebook to computer, and am going to post it now. It's not complete - as you'll see - but I hope that you enjoy it anyway. I'm going to put my own thoughts after it in spoiler tags, so if you want to leave your own comments on it without having my ideas taint your review you can. =)

From Andilus Be's diary -

I'm living in a nightmare. I keep trying to tell myself that this is all just a horrible dream and that any second now, I'll wake up - safe and perhaps in my old bed. Ha. That would mean the past month has been a dream.

Why stop there, Andi? Why not wish that you'd never slept with Brandon? Or at least not that night in April? Or maybe all of this is a dream, Andi. Wish big or don't wish at all, as they say. Yeah. All 15 years of your life have been the fucked up nightmare of some creature from another world. Maybe everyone is a dream. That makes a certain kind of sense, It seems that several hours ago, a good percentage of the world woke up.

Poof. Gone.

Not me, though. And not everyone. In fact, near as I can tell, only people older than teenagers were effected. It's like all the adults - all of them - just completely vanished into thin air.

Even writing that now it seems unreal. God, just reading it sounds absurd. But writing calms me, and after the day I've been through, I need some major calming.

I suppose I should start at the beginning, for my own piece of mind if nothing else. Maybe doing that will help me piece together how this could have happened. Yeah. Wish big.

Let's see. What is today? Right. 5th June, 1986.

It started as a normal day. Well, no, things haven't been normal for a while. Not since I told...not since a month ago.

It was last May that I had to move out. It was last May that my mother and I last spoke. And now...

So the day began as the redefined normal. I was in Brandon's cramped apartment, feeling a bit ill (ahh, the joys of pregnancy) and considering calling into work. I chose not to, mostly for financial reasons. Although getting away from Brandon for 8 hours certainly factored in.

Plus, there's a guy at work I kind of like.

I wonder if he's still alive.
It's a wonder I'm still alive.

But back to my day.

I got to work a little early. My shift didn't begin until 10; I arrived at 9:30 and sat in the lobby, reading to kill the time.

Work was, really, uneventful. Well, of course, until the SHIT HIT THE FAN. Which is a given, of course.

But, yeah, before that - and it was around 1pm, I guess - before then, it was just another day. I performed my drive-thru duties just like a machine. Automaton Andi, that's me.

It wasn't busy at the time - there were maybe half a dozen customers in the lobby. The lunch rush had come and gone for the most part. The drive-thru had two cars in it. One was at the window, awaiting their food. They'd already paid, and in a few minutes would be on their merry way. The other car had just pulled up to the intercom. The weight of the automobile's wheels had set off the ding-dong chime in my headset. I answered with the shpiel I'd said a hundred times in the last two weeks, completely tuning it out, as I'm sure the drivers did. It was all just routine. Boring little play, all of us dutifully going through the motions. I'd give anything to have it back now.

The guy driving the car asked me to hold on and I replied with, "Sure. Take your time."

Those were the last words I said in the Normal World.

I handed the food through the window to the customer. They thanked me, and shifted out of Park.

The Vanishing happened before they could get to Drive, but not before Reverse.

Over the intercom, the driver at the menu said, "Okay, I'm..." and that was it. Poof. Gone in mid-sentence.

When the Vanishing took place, a lot of things began to occur very quickly.

The two cars, no sans drivers, but idling under the engines, began to move. Of course, thousands (millions?) of vehicles on the roads were having the same problem. It's just that the drive-thru accident was a microcosm of the world's automotive disasters.

Reverse-o car was drifting, not going all that fast. The other car, though, had begun to move forward at a relatively much faster speed. I think it had an engine that idled faster, plus the drive thru did slope forward, so gravity was assisting the now empty vehicle.

Partly because it was happening in slow motion, but also because time always does it's parlor tricks during moments of crises, I foresaw the collision. Unfortunately, there was nothing I could do to prevent it. I uselessly shouted, "Watch out!" into the headpiece, not yet aware of just how pointless that warning was.

There was a crunch as the two vehicles finally kissed. And it was then that I noticed they were both passengerless. I gawked for what seemed like hours - the back of my mind rationalizing that the drivers must have ducked below my line of vision. Mark - who was on register duties - uttered a "What the fuck?" AND right then a much louder smash could be heard from the intersection outside.

Giving the accident in the drive-thru one final look - (why'd they both duck? And shouldn't they be getting out of their cars now?) - I turned to see what Mark was cursing about.

The lobby was empty.

That is not entirely accurate. Half eaten food was still at the tables. A drink that one of the customers had apparently been holding at the moment of the Vanishing was lying on the ground, a puddle of soda spreading. And the clothes that everyone had been wearing were lying on the seats, crumpled. Eyeglasses, rings, earrings, fillings. All of that had been left behind as well.

Mark turned to me and asked the most obvious question, "What the hell just happened?"

I blinked in response, and then went to find Cheryl, our manager, or the food prep crew, Michael and Ken. The five of us were the only people scheduled to work until 2pm.

I found Ken standing in the food prep station, motionless. I didn't know the signs at the time, but he was in shock. I've seen it enough now to recognize it. Ken was staring at Michael's clothes, unable to comprehend what he had seen.

He muttered, "Where'd?" or maybe it was "Weird.", but I don't know if he was even aware of my existence. He may have been asking himself. Or God. Or maybe his brain was just (mal)functioning out loud. Seeing Mike's clothing left behind - or more likely, having been witness to Mike Vanishing right before his eyes - had frozen Ken, but it had the opposite effect on me. I had to do something. Figuring that Ken wasn't going anywhere anytime soon, I knocked on Cheryl's office door, already knowing that she would not be in there.

I opened the door and my suspicion was confirmed. Cheryl was nowhere to be found. Her clothes - no panties! - were lying in her chair, and the phone was off the hook. I picked up the receiver and said, "Hello?" but there was, of course, no response on the other end.

I did that thing you do where you try to get a connection - push the hang-up button quickly a couple times - then said "Hello?" again, but it resulted in the same results. I thought I could hear some ensuing chaos on the other end of the phone - more driverless cars - but I couldn't be sure.

I pushed the hang-up button down long enough to disconnect Cheryl's line, and then lifted the button. Dial tone. Thankfully.

I dialed 9-1-1 and waited. It rang. And rang. It was right before the fourth ring that I realized, DUH! Kinda kicking myself for not realizing the stupidity earlier, I hung up the receiver. It was then that my mind turned to the personal, and I thought of my mother. Despite our rough history the previous month or so, I had to be certain that she was okay.

I picked up the handle, and started to dial Mom's number, but was interrupted by Mark frantically screaming.

"Cheryl! Mike! Ken! Andi! We've got to get out of here! Right..."

The rest of his yelling was drowned out by a noise that was straight out of hell. A ROARR that was loud enough to shake the building was followed shortly by an explosion so intense, I could feel the temperature increase by five degrees.

Ken screamed.

Mark screamed.

I shrieked.

Instinctually, I crouched and half-crawled/half-walked over to Mark, who was huddled next to Ken. They both looked terrified. I'm sure I was no effigy of bravery at the time either.

"What the hell was that?" I yelled - mostly due to being unable to hear myself from the auditory assault on my ears.

Mark shouted back, "Airplane!"

I don't know if it was the baby or simply the realization of that word, but my stomach did a very unpleasant flip then. I sat down, trying to soak everything in. Ken was crying.

Mark, seeing his two co-workers on the verge (or beyond) of meltdown, took over the role of Leader.

"Look, guys," he semi-yelled, "I know it's craziness, but we have got to get out of here. Other ...other planes will c-crash. And the fire from..."

As if the Universe knew what he was saying, we heard another explosion - distant, but audible - and began to smell smoke from the nearby fire.

The smell of smoke was enough to snap both of us out of our shock - for the time being, anyway.

The three of us cautiously stood and walked toward the front door. The scene from the door was ...the only way I know how to accurately describe it is Fucked Up.

There was thick black smoke drifting toward the sky, a slight breeze was blowing it toward the Taco Bell where we worked. It appeared (and we would later confirm) that the plane had smacked into a Wal-Mart that was not quite kitty-corner to our workplace. It was certainly within walking distance, but most people would drive.

The streets were cluttered with driverless cars and trucks that had smacked into each other, the engines still revving.

A nearby explosion (probably a car - or more than one - from the parking lot of Wal-Mart that had caught fire due to the plane wreck) startled us. I think I may have let out a small scream.

Ken muttered, "I wanna go home," and started to run toward his car. I looked helplessly at Mark, who ran over to Ken and grabbed his shirt.

They began to argue. I remember Mark screaming about helping the people in the plane crash and Ken yelling back, "What people?!" While they fought, I surveyed the area. I don't know if I can express the extreme sense of discomfort I had at seeing a scene that was a hybrid mix between a war zone and a ghost town, and NOT hear sirens. There was smoke - and it stank - all over the sky, but no fire trucks racing to the rescue. And perhaps most disconcerting, there were no people running from the plane wreck.

I felt myself slipping again. The magnitude of the situation was simply too large. I turned my attention to Mark and Ken. Mark was trying to convince Ken to come with him to survey the disaster. "We didn't disappear, Ken," he was saying, "maybe other people didn't either. And they need our help." The mention of other people not vanishing made me think of my mom. And Brandon.

The guys looked at me then, as though I would be the tie-breaker or the deciding factor in what would happen next.

I blinked, and then said, "I agree with Mark. We should look for other people. But first, I wanna call my mom. See if she..." I didn't need to finish the sentence and instead walked back inside.

Mark followed me. I think Ken hesitated for a few seconds before he came inside as well. Mark said, "Not too long, Andi. Like I said, other planes are gonna..." I cut him off with a nod of 'yeah, I get it.'

I picked up the phone and quickly dialed my mom's number. It rang four times. Six. Eight. It was halfway through the ninth ring when I just hung up, turned to Ken and Mark, and shook my head. I didn't know what to say, and I didn't want to cry because I knew I wouldn't be able to stop.

Mark hugged me and offered the, "It doesn't mean she's not okay," line that we both knew wasn't true.

Ken said, "I'm gonna call my sister. She's probably scared shitless."

He dialed the phone as Mark and I stood by. As the line was ringing, I looked at Cheryl's clothing. I felt morbid looking at them, but I also couldn't look away. I reached down and touched them, proddingly, partly afraid that I might vanish if I came in contact with them. When I remained, I took a bigger gamble and actually lifted her shirt. The material felt normal enough.

"Meredith?"

Ken had, apparently, gotten an answer on the phone. I dropped Cheryl's shirt, and eagerly listened to Ken's side of the conversation.

"Are you okay?" he listened for a while, then said, "I don't know. I don't know. No. Just. No ...just stay there. Just stay there until I get there," he glanced in Mark's direction. Mark frowned a little.

"Soon," Ken said, "I know. I am, too. I'll be there in a bit. Just stay put and everything will be okay. I love you, sis. I'll see you in thirty..." a quick look toward Mark "...forty minutes."

He hung up and turned to us. "I was right. She is scared shitless."

I giggled, a somewhat scary giggle that made me think of those old Crazy Mary movies. Not a good thing. But that made me want to laugh more. Like my fear of not being able to stop crying, I somehow knew that if I gave in to the laughing indulgence, I'd not stop. I bit my cheek to prevent myself from going hysterical. Ken smiled wanly at his joke, and I thought I saw Mark had a bit of a smile as well, but I couldn't be sure.

Sensing that he had more to say, I nodded toward Ken in a 'go on' way.

He kinda shrugged and said, "Meredith didn't have much to tell me. She's scared, obviously. She tried to call our step-dad, but couldn't get hold of him. And she's heard the explosions. And...this is so fucked up. Where'd everyone go, man?"

Mark looked unsure but eh knew that Ken needed some reassurance - even if it was false hope. Looking back, it's incredible how well together Mark was. I bet he'd've made a great leader. He certainly helped Ken and I through that initial roughness. And, of course, the Wal-Mart incident. Which I'm getting to.

So Mark went over and gave Ken a hug (!!) and told him that he'd be able to get to Meredith shortly, and that she'd be safe at home.

I wondered about that - especially with planes and helicopters falling out of the sky, fires burning uncontrolled, and cars simply moving forward. But I kept quiet. There was enough to worry about without my throwing in more doubt.

Ken kinda sniffled, "Okay. Thanks." And then Mark shifted gears. "Are we ready to go?" he asked us.

"Is...isn't there anyone you want to call?" I asked him.

Mark kinda steeled up, and simply shook his head. I realized how little I truly knew him. God, nobody really knows anyone.

I said, "Yeah, then, I guess we should go." Ken nodded in agreement.

We left work...and instantly hit a snag. Ken had a car - as did Cheryl and Mike - but Mark and I were carless. I took the bus - I doubt that's gonna happen again anytime soon - and Mark had a bicycle.

"Uh. Should we take my car or hoof it?" Ken asked.

Mark, our leader by some unspoken vote, hesitated.
"Let's ..uh...actually..." he ran back inside, leaving Ken and I exchanging puzzled glances.

We heard another explosion. It came from the direction of the freeway, and had probably occurred at least half a minute before. I wondered what had caused it. Or, rather, a small part of me wondered. Mostly, I was terrified.

Ken and I both turned and looked in the direction of the blast. We both then looked up to see if we could see any more aircraft. We couldn't, but that didn't mean anything, of course. Ken looked at his watch. "It's only been six minutes!"

At first I thought he meant that Mark had been inside for that long, but that couldn't be right. I then figured that he meant since the Vanishing. Even that felt wrong. Seven minutes ago life was normal? How could that be?

It was at that moment that I remember distinctly thinking (not for the last time, obviously, but probably for the first time that day) that I'd gone crazy and was imagining this entire thing. That I must still be asleep, dreaming it all. I shook my head, hoping that if this were just an illusion, that would clear it up, make it end. It didn't, of course.

Mark emerged from the store at that time, with a strange look of accomplishment and dread on his face. I was about to find out why.

"We're taking Mike's truck." He informed us, holding up the keychain of Mike's keys.

Ken's jaw dropped.

"Nuh uh," he protested. "We're not stealing his truck, man. No way."

"Ken," Mark said rationally, "it's not stealing. Mike is gone."

"I FUCKING KNOW HE'S GONE!" Ken screamed. "HE FUCKING VANISHED IN FRONT OF ME!"

Mark blinked, hard, then just said, "I'm sorry, Ken. But I'm still taking his truck. You can come with me, or not. Your choice. Andi?"

I looked between the two men - two boys, really. God, we're all so young - and then stepped toward Mark, showing who my alliances were with.

Ken looked seriously stressed out. And pissed.

He ran his fingers through his hair and screamed, at the sky, at Mark, at the whole situation, "MOTHERFUCK!!!"

Mark nodded, as though he sympathized - and possibly he did- then asked Ken, "Well?"

Ken looked at the crash site. At Mike's truck. At the ground. He shook his head 'no'.

Mark looked as though he expected this. He stepped toward Ken and shook his hand and did that half man-hug that guys do. He said what I was thinking - "Be safe." To be honest, I had reservations about splitting up at all. In my mind there were safety in numbers. I still feel that way. Tomorrow, after I sleep, I think I'll tell the others that we should look for other survivors. And Ken and Meredith should be at the top of the list. God, so much to do. And so much has already happened. I should finish this entry and attempt to get some sleep. The others already are.

Where was I?

Oh, yeah.

We (that is, Mark and I) got into Mike's truck. Mark was driving, of course.

I used to hear stories about how bad teenagers are at driving, but I guess the reporters of those stories never drove with Mark. The world had suddenly lost a good chunk of people, a plane had crashed less than a half mile away darkening the sky, there were still vehicles 'driving' without pilots, and yet Mark drove like a pro. Totally focused. I guess Mark is - was - the type of person that excelled under pressure.
We got to the Wal-Mart parking lot and Mark parked the truck. The heat was super intense, and the stench of smoke made breathing difficult. If you ignored the burning Wal-Mart and focused on the parking lot, you would see shopping carts, filled with bags of stuff, but nobody around. A few of the cars had their trunks open - the people had been loading their trunks when the Vanishing had hit.

[Begin spoiler for -A few of my thoughts -highlight to view]
Hmm. Well, I probably owe Stephen King some royalties or something, since the 'pregnant teen writing in her diary as the world ends' idea is pretty much lifted from The Stand. And then the Vanishing leaving people's clothing, jewelry, etc, being ..."borrowed" from The Langoliers, but that's okay.
One of my biggest flaws as a writer is that I don't give enough detail, and that was totally evident to me as I was typing this up. Certain parts were actiony enough, which is great. And I could see what was happening, but that might be because I know what's going on, ya know?

I was trying to subtly get across that this is taking place in a world that is very similar to our own, but isn't quite the same. Thus the name Andilus, and the references to the Crazy Mary movies, in addition when Andi mentions the date, she uses the day/month/year style, unlike most Americans in this reality, who use month/day/year. I don't know if it came across, though. Again, probably not enough details.

Um. I know I had more to say, but I really don't remember what it was now. Doh.
[end spoiler]

Hopefully I'll add on throughout the year.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Monday, February 07, 2005

We can be happy underground

As far as the government is concerned, Irina doesn't officially exist! That's okay, though, because as far as Irina is concerned, the government doesn't officially exist either. Unless the government reads my blog - I believe the appropriate icons are [shifty] and [eyebrow] - they have no official documentation of her birth. Ha!

Of course, we will get her all set up on "the grid" in a bit.


Won't we?

No, we will.




Unless we don't.



But don't worry, we will. She'll have a (useless except for government and corporation tracking purposes - and identity theft!) Social Security Number.




Eventually.

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Epic battles and ads.

Super Bowl Sunday. Saren and I watched the commercials, and played the Buffy board game during the football parts. It's our annual tradition.

Best ads this year: FedEx (a talking, dancing bear ("That bear can dance!"), and Burt Reynolds) and Careerbuilder.com (monkeys!)

Worst ads: Pretty much everything else. Blah. The Super Bowl spots don't live up to the hype anymore. If they ever did.

I do want to see War of the Worlds, though. Mmmmm...destruction.

Best quotes from the Bimpsons after-game show: "America's priorities are a joke!" Heh.
and
Mom on street: "You try to raise your child as a secular humanist, but these religious organizations cram it down your throats!"
Child: "Mommy, why wasn't I baptized?"
Mom: "You see?!? You see!?!?"

We tried to watch American Dad, but could only take about five minutes of it. Not funny.

The game ended before either Good or Evil actually completed their goal, but Evil "won" by the fact that her players had more hit points remaining. Just like in real life!

Saturday, February 05, 2005

"There's only one bitch here, and I'm looking at him."

If ...doh. I lost what I was going to say.

We got our car back today. Yay! Steph's dad is Mr. Fixit, and it's super great that he does so much for us. Now we must remember to make sure we don't run it back into the ground. Oil changes every three thousand miles from here on out.

To celebrate the return of having a vehicle, we bought pizza for dinner. And I got to visit the brand new Washington Mutual bank around the corner. (It's finally open!) It was kinda spooky to go in there and have the ATM buttons be completely new and not worn down at all. It had that New Bank Smell and everything.

While I was buying Pepsi to go along with the pizza, there was a young man attempting to purchase cigarettes. He didn't have ID, so the cashier refused. He insisted that he was 18, but he had simply forgotten his drivers license at home. But Apu (I shall from here on out refer to all 7-11 employees as Apu, regardless of age, sex, or ethnicity. I just started this now, but I like it) was stubborn and stood her ground. She said that they couldn't take the chance and end up with a big fine.

Heh. And now - right now - there is a PhillipMorris commercial on the TV, talking about how Phillip Morris is a wonderful company that does it's part to keep cigarettes away from children. Yup. Everything short of stopping making them.

But, really, why should they try to keep children away from cigarettes? Everyone knows that cigarettes kill you. Why is it unacceptable for children to commit suicide, but okay once you turn 18 (or younger in certain states)? The tobacco companies could bring in a bunch of money if they allowed minors to purchase their product too. Young people have a lot of disposable income, supposedly.

Besides, smoking is cool.

Eh, whatever.

Reminder to myself: Look up what J.K. Rowling has planned for after Harry Potter. It'll be interesting to see what, if anything, she produces once that series is complete.

I have a killer headache. I suppose I ought to consume some aspirin.

Zokutou word meterZokutou word meter
9,668 / 200,005
(4.0%)

Friday, February 04, 2005

Nicknames

I've had a lot of nicknames over the years. I wonder if certain people exude "nickname germs" or something, that make people want to call them by names other than their given ..name.

Anywhat, an incomplete list of some of the nicknames I've had:

PatMan

Patcasso (due to my drawing ability...or perhaps lack thereof)

Comrade Patricknick (um...because I'm a communist?)

Thin Man

CAAT (stood for Crazy At All Times)

Elf

Incompetent Bastard (well, I am)

Doogie Howser

Professor

Pico Sauce

College Boy

Awesome Guy, Awesome Guide, Awesome Dad

and of course, P@.

I don't mind any of these - well, maybe Incompetent Bastard - but it is strange that I've been given so many different nicknames.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Dreams, etc.

That would be a cool name for a store. In a movie.

The past ...I don't know how long, I've had difficulty remembering my dreams. I think part of it was due to having my sleep pattern tinkered with.

But last night I made up for it. I had an abundance of dreams during my last sleep. I feel like giving partial credit to Irina. She has powers, dude. Powers.

So, some of my dreams from last night:

I was driving our car through the city, smashing into signs and small trees and other cars, and basically being a complete menace to the streets. (ala Simpsons Hit and Run, which is weird, since I've not played it in at least a week) At the point where I could no longer drive the car due to damage, it switched on me so that I was standing amongst a crowd looking at the carnage I had caused. Stephanie showed up and asked me what had happened to the car. I didn't get to answer her because a clipboard got passed to me at that moment. Someone was collecting signatures. I signed my name, but I have no idea what for.

A quick segment of The Simpsons played out in one of my other dreams. (I will often have dreams that "play" like I'm watching television or a movie. And generally they involve fictional characters. My subconscious: Another victim of pop culture.) Bart was standing near a grate, holding a cigarette that he was going to smoke. A Troy McClure type person (but not Troy McClure) approached him, telling him how smoking was a really bad thing to do. Bart dropped the cigarette into the grate, but the adult continued to admonish him, informing him that his dog had smoked for years, and now he was going to die of lung cancer. Bart was horrified, and approached the man's dog. He asked the canine, "Are you really going to die from smoking?" and the dog tried to bark, but instead coughed.

Some work dream, where I went back to Master Control and had no idea how to operate anything in there. The station went to black for fifteen minutes while I frantically tried to figure out the buttons and how to get things back to normal.

I remember dreaming about shopping for ice cream with Stephanie.

Darn. I know I had a few other dreams, but, like they all do, they've faded. Ah well.

I wonder what Irina is dreaming of.

In nondream news, I rebeat the Shadow Queen today. Because I could. Bang pow!
Also,

no, that was all.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

"Oh my goodness! Oh my goodness!"

Happy Groundhog Day everyone! It's hard to believe that it's this time of year again already, but it's true.
In celebration, I read Groundhog on Evergreen Road to Saren and Harper. Then Harper read it back to me. It was interesting to learn that another name that groundhogs are known by is "whistle-pig". Hee! Whistle pig.

And, it turned out that apparently the Groundhog did not see his shadow today, which, according to legend means six more weeks of winter. So, um, better luck next year?

*****


In non-groundhog news, Stephanie has already documented the birth story of Irina from her point of view, now here's mine. Between the two of us, I think everyone reading will be able to viacariously live out the birth of our third daughter. [grin]

So, since Steph began her story on the 31st, I'll do the same. While at work, just before leaving, I had a quick conversation with Tina. She mentioned that her sister had gone into labor with one of her children while at a Wal-Mart. (Birth stories have been pretty popular this last week or so at my work.) I said that that was kind of funny, since, except for TV and movies, I'd never seen a woman's water break in public. But, yeah, apparently it does happen. I jokingly said, "Well, we're going shopping tonight, so maybe Steph'll have the baby at Smith's."

So when Steph mentioned that she had bloody show at the Smith's restroom, we finished the grocery shopping as quickly as possible.

Went to sleep on the 31st, with the alarm set for 6 am. I don't normally have to wake up until 7, but I was going to take the bus to work the next day, due to our brakes being less than perfect. (Good thing I didn't. Imagine if Steph had gone into labor while I was at work. She'd've had Irina long before I would've managed to ride the bus back home!) Anywhat- I woke up around 5:30 and realized that Stephanie wasn't in the bed. Part of me considered getting up and checking on her, but the more selfish (and more tired) part logiced that the alarm would be going off in 30 minutes, so I fell back asleep.

As soon as the clock hit six, I jumped up, and walked into the living room. There was an air about my wife, and I knew the answer before I asked, but I asked anyway. "Do you want me to stay home?" She hesitated for about three seconds before saying, "Yes."

I smiled happily and called Tina. Of course she wasn't in the office yet, so I got her voicemail. I left a message saying that today would be the day, wish us luck, and I'll call you back later.

Stephanie then wanted something to eat. I wondered if she'd be able to stomach it - in the hospital they never let women eat anything more than ice chips - but I made her the toast and orange juice, and she ate it all.

The TV news was on, but I honestly can't recall any of the stories. I was too focused on Steph. I asked, "What can I do?" and she told me, "Don't watch me." Heh.
Steph then got up to take her shower, and I cleaned up the living room. Once she was done showering, she brought out the birthing blankets and set them beside the small couch. She knelt down, and let the contractions do their work.

At some point shortly thereafter, Saren woke up and came out. Like Steph said, at first she looked groggy, but when she realized what was going on, she had a look of intense awe on her face. She asked me, "Is the baby going to come soon?" I said, "Yes." and she got a huge smile.

I got Saren her breakfast, and she tried to eat, but Stephanie was sort of screaming, and it was pretty distracting to her. We comforted her, though, letting her know that Mama was okay and not to worry.

Harper woke up from the noise and as I was going to get her her cereal, Stephanie yelled out, "Pat, I need you!" I ran back in and asked what, she responded, "Baby!" and then things happened very very fast.

I helped Steph up slightly, and I saw that her water had already broken. I looked down and could see the baby crowning already. "It's coming!" I reported, and I was dimly aware of Saren and Harper standing behind me watching as well.

Two more pushes, and she was born. I said, "Oh my goodness!" about a gabillion times, as my daughter slid from my wife into my arms. Catching a baby is fucking awesome. Feeling the gooey newborn, all warm and ...new. It's like nothing else ever. The baby was already colorful, not purple, like I remember seeing with Saren and Harper, and not like I was expecting. She did have some mucus in her cry, so we put her bellydown on Steph's leg and we rubbed her back for a bit. I don't know when I reported, "It's a girl!" but I know it was very soon after her entire body was out.

Steph had me get the string to tie the umbelical cord and some scissors - run under extremely hot water for several minutes - so that the cord could be cut. My only regret from the whole ordeal was that as I was cutting the cord, I sensed that Saren was behind me, and I didn't ask her if she wanted to do it.

Eventually Steph birthed the afterbirth (placenta, and lots of blood - although I remember it being a lot grosser at Saren and Harper's births - maybe I'm just getting desensitized to them), we cleaned up, and phone calls were made.

Some of the people I talked to were unaware that we were doing a homebirth (let alone unassisted). When it came out in the phone calls, the general reaction was supportive. As Steph's mom put it, "My friends are all in awe of you guys. They also think you're crazy."
Me: "Yeah. We get a lot of that."

After the inital phone calls, we still hadn't settled on a name. We had been so certain that the baby was a boy, and while she'd been in utero, no girl names had "clicked", that we just didn't have one for her. I hopped online, and found a baby name site and started doing some surfing. We had some potential names (Margaret, Delana, Irina, Ember, Apple Egg Delight) but we figured maybe the interweb would help strike the inspiration. Eventually, of course, we settled on Irina Zoey, and when we said it, it felt right. And it is.

The rest of the day - and today, too, for that matter - has been blissful goodness. Having been a part of the birth here at home, I really just don't understand why anyone has a baby at a hospital. It's so amazing, and I wouldn't trade this experience for anything. Irina is very peaceful - which is funny, since "Irina" means "peace" - and alert and smiley and just amazing. There's nothing like having a newborn fall asleep in your arms to reaffirm your belief in humanity.

I'm so happy right now. Life is good.



*****


The birth from Oreo's perspective:

First, the big ugly cat that I kinda like [he means Steph - P@] started making strange noises. And everytime I tried to investigate the smells (they were so interesting), the big ugly cat that I kinda like would push me out of the way.
Later, the big ugly cat with short whiskers [that'd be me - P@] came out, and he'd push me away too. I tried to scratch the couches to relax myself, but that made the big ugly cat with short whiskers mad too. (It always does. If he'd only try it, then he would see how relaxing it is!)
The two small big ugly cats came out too, but they didn't pay any attention to me, which suited me just fine. I could take a hint of when I wasn't wanted, so I went back into the bedroom and slept.

Now there's a NEW ugly cat, but I can't bring myself to investigate it yet. Just as long as it doesn't eat my food, we're cool.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Goddamn right, it's a beautiful day!

IT'S A GIRL!!


More details (and pictures) later.