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Showing posts from December, 2013

The Turning of Another Page

Well, folks, it's been a year.

Personally, it's been a busy one, as expected. Two French courses under my belt with a third to start in a couple of weeks. I have rediscovered a love for the classroom, long dormant and thought to be dead.  After a couple more of these courses I am going to join my local French association, which will get me much needed practice actually communicating. I don't want to join just yet, because I'm still a rank beginner and I have a horror of looking foolish. But I will.

The highlight of the year was of course Eva's surgery, which has so far been an unqualified success. She drank some water too quickly yesterday and bitterly regretted it...yes, even water can cause problems now...but overall I have to say she's done exceptionally well making one hell of an adjustment. I can't imagine having my diet so radically restricted, but she's done it almost without complaint. She has lost almost a quarter of her body mass, her diabetes…

Merry Christmas, One and All

I think -- I hope -- Stressember is over. This year was probably the hardest lead-up to Christmas I've had in a decade. I can't talk about the issues I have faced and (mostly) faced down. Oh, the things I'd say if I could. I am Oh-eff-eff OFF for three whole days now, although I do have to go in briefly on Friday.
It still doesn't really feel like Christmas. (I'm sorry, I can't write that without thinking of my dad's local (by which I mean 45 minutes south) radio station, which used to be called CKLP-FM. Every Christmas, amidst all the cheesy carols, you'd suddenly hear a glorious upswelling choral announcement: "IT FEEEEEEELS LIKE CHRISTMAS!"...and immediately a DJ would echo the sentiment in the kind of husky voice designed to peel clothes off women. I couldn't hear that without laughing like a became one of eleventy dozen catchphrases that have kept our marriage fed and watered over the years.

But it really doesn't. Feel l…

Fire in the Breadbin

It was a typical morning until the crackling noise.

Maybe a little more rushed than some, but nothing too out of the ordinary. Breakfast had been gulped down, Georgia-Ball had been played, and it was 7:30...just about time to go to work. Eva was going to head out on my heels and run some errands, and so, following the routine to the letter, I put the kitchen garbage can on the stove, out of reach of Mr. Tux.

Don't get ahead of me, now.

So, as I was saying, I put the plastic garbage can on the stove, the way I have done literally thousands of times before. I came out to sit with Eva for a couple of minutes--7:40 is my cut-off time if I want to get to work for 8, and every minute with Eva counts, you know? We're sitting there talking about something or other to do with the upcoming day, when we heard a riffling, ruffling crackle coming from the kitchen. It sounded like a fireplace, except fireplaces are nice soothing things. When a fire is in a place that is not a fire's pla…

Drive, He Said

According to the most recent forecasts, my area will be hit this weekend by some sort of storm. I say 'some sort' because the temperature is supposed to be somewhere right around zero, and the exact track of the storm is impossible to predict even a day out.
Aside: So many people bitch about how the weather forecasters can't ever get anything right...anyone who knows weather at all marvels at how often they nail the forecast, especially around here. The Great Lakes region is among the most difficult on the entire planet to forecast accurately. The jet stream rides right through here much of the time: one little bubble or dip causes drastically different weather. What's more, there are a myriad of microcurrents off the lakes that cause all manner of weather havoc. My father lives almost within sight of a weather radar tower that was placed where it is because his weather is decidedly crazy. Storms either split north and south of him, leaving him dry, or they actually hi…


There's a thread on Reddit right now: "Men, what have you cried about?"

I can't read that question without reading a subtext into it: and why did you cry about that, you pussy?

That probably comes from my childhood. Did anyone else ever get 'quit crying or I'll give you something to cry about'?  Yeah. I'm what you'd call a sensitive soul. Can't watch people being hurt without feeling hurt myself, to say nothing of animals. Friends of mine insist on posting horrific stories of animal abuse where I can see them, "to raise awareness". I applaud the sentiment, but I don't need my awareness raised any further, thank you.

I've cried over movies (this one reduced me to a blubbering blob for over an hour), more books than I can count (most recently at the end of The Lions of al-Rassan, which bothered me a little since it's probably my fourth or fifth time through the damn book and it gets me every time; life situations, either mi…

Facebook Friends

are real friends, at least in my case.
I met up with a former co-worker last weekend. Hadn't seen her in either 21 or 22 years, I'm not sure which.
When I worked with her, I couldn't exactly call her a friend. A friendly face, sure--her free McSmile was genuine, all-the-way-through. I didn't know much about her back then, but I sensed plenty, all of it good.

She hasn't changed. She's lived a few lifetimes in the last two decades (haven't we all?) but she still greets life with a smile that's almost unshakeable.

I would never have met up with her if it weren't for Facebook.

I can rhyme off any number of other people, some of whom I haven't met yet but sincerely hope to, who have enriched my life thanks to Facebook. Among them:

the woman I first 'met' in alt.horror in '91. I lost contact with her for much of the time between, but found her again a couple of years ago (and thank you, all you folks who include your maiden names in your Fa…

Why Don't Special People Realize How Special They Are?

I decided long ago--back in high school, actually--that one of my purposes in life, insofar as I could be said to have any, was to remind people how wonderful they are.

I hope I can be forgiven for focussing on women. I have what I feel are good reasons for this.

 Men have absolutely no idea what to do with that kind of information. The saddest thing is that there are more than a few men out there with no self-esteem and no confidence and if you try to nurture either, you're likely to be told off in no uncertain terms. Then there are men out there who know how wonderful they are. Most of them, contrary to whatever their inflated egos may tell them...are anything but.
And then there are the men who really are wonderful. I count a couple of them among my friends, and both of them have a kind of quiet, easygoing confidence that needs no nurturing, or at least none from me. That said, I love them. You're not supposed to say that about your male friends, for fear of free-floating g…

Going Moldy....

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