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Showing posts from 2009

Keyboard Function Keys That Didn't Quite Make It

Thanks stresstwig , fount of ideas and facial hair. "Inform Miss Penny That One Of The Vacuum Tubes Has Blown, BLAST IT" - yelling was more efficient and cleared Babbage's blood of dangerous humours. "YELLING" - Functionality was merged with Caps Lock. π - use of circles and any calculations with circles was seen to be a sign of a weak mind, weaker constitution, and a moral fibre that was entirely suspect. "Definitely Nazi"/"Most Likely Nazi"/"Carrier Pigeon Error" - Enigma was a very specialized machine. "Nuke It" - Part of the original DARPA spec, it was thought that there may be a need for more safeguards. "Check Connection Time to BBS " - Ones parents always needed to use the phone before this became an issue. "Power Down Memetic Cyclotron " - Can't think of a reason, honestly. "Toggle" - Apparently in Urdu this means an imaginative way to soil ones underwear whilst balancing on an inv

My Dog's Suggestions On A More Orderly Household

Thanks metamonk , for the idea. Just leave the food on the ground, seriously. Let's not delude ourselves into thinking I care whether or not food is in the dog dish. It could be beside, or, let's be honest here, inside a toilet, and I'll still eat it. Clinging to a rather disgusting belief that I care either way is an insult to both of us. Accept that I will slobber on anything and everything. Especially the children. Just tell yourself it's better to have e-coli infused dog slobber on them than the spackle of mucous and food that was there previously. Why are you throwing away dog bones? They dry out and can puncture your garbage bags, leaving a mess everywhere. Just throw it on the ground. I'm sure someone will dispose of it properly. Invest in scented candles. Much better than dog baths. I like the way I smell, you hate giving me baths, win-win. Dirty laundry isn't. It's a marvellous treasure trove of fascinating smells. Please pile it high and everywhere

Christmas Family Letter 2009

The year, as is the case when you get a certain age, has passed us by faster than you can "Bon Jovi's Slippery When Wet was made TWENTY THREE years ago?". And so it has. This year has been slightly more eventful than others. We've had another child on January 16th, 2009. A boy this time. A somber, serious boy who will look at you with soulful eyes full of life's regret and the eternal struggle of self-actualization until you play peek-a-boo and he kills himself laughing. He's a mystery. His birth was little on the long side, but everything came out swimmingly, we were out of there in record time because we've done it before and as much fun as hospitals are, they're no place to raise a child. What else is there to say about him. Well, he's a baby, he doesn't have a whole lot of opinions. He likes to crawl, he likes to hold things and stand up. He's really into objects. He'll be crying bloody murder like someone has just suckerpunched him

Things I Would Do For Fun If I Had More Moxie

Buy a security guard outfit, stand in the foyer of a very swank theatre, wait for the opera intermission, then bustle about, pushing people aside saying, "Move along, move along." Sneak into a gynecologist's empty patient room, then scream at the top of my lungs, "The baby's going to come outta WHERE?" Drive at exactly the speed limit. High-beam and honk at others that don't. Make a buncha mix-CD's featuring Grandmaster Flash and the Funky Bunch, New Edition, Ladysmith Black Mambazo, and Cannibal Corpse, put a barcode on them, and sneak them into the library CD section. Sing the national anthem at the top of my lungs, with a few incorrect words, give a ribbon to the first person to correct me. Put 2 chairs and a desk, interview style, on the street. Put a camcorder on a tripod. Interview any and all people who sit with me. Alternate between an interview for a legally suspect and highly dangerous job, a celebrity interview (with questions intended f

Guide to Vancouver #1

The Olympics are coming up.¹ That's why I'm going to do this series of posts, where I'll expound on my general overview of the city I live in/around/in a suburb of: Vancouver. Vancouver is, first and foremost, a city that seems to be always ranked near the top of this and that livability study. It's also tiny. A hamlet. 2.5 million people live here, if you include the suburbs. 600k if you count only Vancouver proper. This gives most of Vancouverites a bit of a complex. A phrase you'll hear often is 'world-class city'. Maybe too often, maybe too forced, usually coming down from some chamber of commerce or some captain of some industry. We're constantly preening and trying to make ourselves a little more important than we are. True 'world-class' cities, like a CIA operative or someone who actually enjoys Christmas cakes, never have to proclaim it. I don't think you'd ever hear someone from Paris, or London, or New York, expound about how &


I like to cook. I'm not much of one, but some of our friends tend to think I can . The trick to this is learning how to do the big dishes; the type that have been trodden into our Western Subconscious as Real Cooking. Think June Cleaver or any meal as depicted in safe and painfully wholesome Disney movies. Turkey, roast, rack of lamb. Large portions of vertebrates prepared well. I can't bake to save my life, or do much of anything other than roasting animals, but I still bask in the small glory within our circles of friends of Someone Who Won't Burn Water. There was a certain reader in mind when I wrote this, my little cooking tutorial. Then I realized that this person might think 'learning to cook' as being able to prepare a 6 course meal and dessert cart using nothing less than a Coleman Stove and a rather heat tolerant teacup. I will then presume this little post is for those of you just taking the plunge. Who wish to brandish a spatula with grace and aplomb and

100 word fiction

So cheesoning saw this , and decided I should post an entry. In the 600+ long list. Between me writing this draft and saving it yesterday, and me thinking about finishing this post, the contest has reached 850. Ergh. Chances of winning, vanishingly small. But I like having these arbitrary limits, it gives shape to my writing. Anyhoo, this is my entry. It's steampunky, because cheesoning DEMANDED it: The electro-transmogrifying-intransigent-polychine came alive. Rattling brass pipes, enormous thrumming copper kettle drums all deafened Frank to the tiny alarm he had set up. Too quiet, it turns out. Almost too late. With an embarassed shuffle perfected by all Continental Engineers, Frank shimmied down the jury-rigged ladders to the belly of the beast. The financial backers and politicians watched with restrained alarm. "It's moved, hasn't it?" shouted someone. Frank hit the alarm twice. Nothing doing. It kept pealing away. "Ah, no. Never will, I'm afraid.&qu

Another Halloween

I manned the door for this Halloween . I live in a rather large townhouse complex filled with kids and young families and the burgeoning terror of intra-strata political strife. It's a great community, people know each other and there's always some sort of community event planned for the big holidays; the easy ones, anyways, Summer, New Years, Halloween. They stay away from the touchy ones: Christmas and Easter, say, or any pagan sun holiday expropriated for messianiac desert religions. Being in such a large complex means plenty of kids. Gaggles and straggles and gangs of them. Gawky rebellious and punk in a way that only youth can be punk; young and exuberant and screamy as pre-teens simply have to be; awkward and confused and just along for the ride as toddlers are (pretty much all the time, actually). Experiencing Halloween from the other side is, something. As a man, there is the constant effort to not appear to be the Creepy Predator That Your Parents Warned You About. W

Don Draper Brands Low Corrosion Metal Stamped House Exteriors

Don Draper is the lead character in Mad Men , a swanky 60's cool drama about advertising. It's a war out there. Every day, on the job. Anyone can live in a house, but a man wants to reside in his castle. And while there, he needs everyone on his side. Everyone pulling with him. And to where. To where is he taking his family? To the future. It's not a new world of gristle and grime, of steel and coal. It's plastics, rayon, aluminum. Aluminum Siding. Your home, your castle.

Site Cleanup, Feedback

I've applied my rather sparse design skills to this blog. Removed a buncha stuff on the right, tried to make it as clean as possible. And like a grown child-actor of a once wildy popular family sitcom, I crave attention and feedback. However, I also know that commenting on blogs can be weird, especially if you don't have a lot to say; and posting just to write 'good post', or 'this sucks more than a suckington vacuum on suck day' does seem to be more bother than it's worth. There has also been times where my friends or e-friends or whoever have said in passing that 'such and such' post was great. This is... good, except that if I had never crossed that off hand comment by chance, I'd have never have known. The majority of my stuff gets zero comments. Ixnay. Niet. Nein. Zero. The heterosexual rating for a Liberace show. The number of humvees at a Greenpeace protest. The number of people who avidly watch both "Mad Men" and "Deal or N

Strip Malls

Thanks to Daniel Greene for the photo Strip malls have always held a certain sad mystery for me. The center of small town activity, beaten up and painfully hopeful. They bring to mind sun-cooked parking lots, over-designed laundromats, and fake-Chinese restaurants that feature, of all things, smorgasbord. The small-time fast food franchises trying to take hold. The Salvation Army, the runty clothing stores that seem to only carry 'depressingly working class attire sure to draw ridicule in the big city' clothes. The perpetual 70's decor and aesthetic. It's full of a weird hope because it has so many small business owners scrabbling for success. It's the juxtaposition : 1) nameless, dry hand of capitalism figuring out traffic flows and population densities and demographic consumer habits then deciding to make COMMERCIAL MULTI-UNIT MIXED-USE ZONING FOR 18.2% PROFIT GIVEN CURRENT FORECASTS. 2) The undented, shining and perfect ambitition of individuals. They're bo

Shake It, Baby

So my good friend spruce (aka Jeff) forayed into that limitless mire of hipster fashion, that bog of sarcasticaly appreciated t-shirt design, threadless . He's an artist, as you can see (and by the by, entered some 24 hour comic something or other, and made this very cool, very quirky, very spruce comic ). He's got a great style. I always get the impression that many of his characters are Dali-inspired Gumby-dolls infused with malevolent intent. There's a pliability there, and a quirky fun that you only get when you arm a serial killer with a very strong rubber band, I imagine. Anyhow, he created this from scratch. From nothing. That whole creative process thing is terrifying and weird and I think is put under too many words and thinking; and, like zen or your first wedgie, can only be really be known by experiencing it. Nevertheless, I'll attempt to blather on a bit. When I asked him about his design he was vague. Like, he drew it and whatnot, then thought of a back-

Bowling Alone

Thanks to UTKChristie for the photo. It's strange. You hit adulthood. You live in a neighbourhood and get married and have children and whathaveyou. But you never, or at least, it'd been my experience, have those friendships you did in school. That clamouring crowd of like-minded individuals, all bursting with excitement and energy and the undaunted optimism. A buzzing outlook tempered by anxiety and parental expectations and the blazing possibility that you just might have a charmed life. And, just as likely, that your life will crash in a multitude of failed tests/interviews/jobs and you'll end up one of those pitiful characters featured in Coen Brother's films. One moment, you don't have time for all the people you know or are interested in knowing. And in the blink of a year or ten, you're in a perpetual hamster wheel of commute/work/family/Weekend Activity Planned By Extended Family. There's that somewhat seminal book Bowling Alone , that looks at the

My Unbeatable Script Idea

Ok, here it is, it can't fail, it's only a matter of how many billions it'll pull in. You ready? Are you sitting down, perhaps with some Peak Freans and a nice mug of Sanka? It's gonna blow your mind through your chest, your colon and leave a gaping hole where your vestigial tail (that your parents had removed because "No son/daughter of theirs was going to live the life of a circus freak, what with child labour laws being what they were, and how saturated the Monkey Child market is with the regional circus circuit...") used to be. Alrighty, so the story revolves around Francis, a hemp farmer and interpretive banjo avant-garde conceptualizer who travels three months of the year to Africa to help them run clown schools for the deaf and those susceptible to renal failure. His partner and love of his life, Jessica, is a folk-singer who plays free shows for Sandinista Rebels and the Society of WW I Half-Track Repairmen. On her time off she crafts beautifully made


The entire family went to Calgary this past weekend. Used the Air-miles™, packed the bags with twice the amount of anything we'll need, and three times what we've ever thought of wanting, and took that one hour plane ride the the Texas of Canada. Now, I mean this in a slightly derogatory way, but only if you're one to take affront to being called brash, loud, and in possession of far more ego than is healthy. I mean, people wear cowboy hats, in public, and not just during Halloween. There is a very respectable showing of that slightly irksome sticker "Support our Troops" on seemingly every car. Now here I am, getting political, which I try to avoid as I know little about either side and am generally disappointed whenever I get behind one or the other. But "Support our Troops" has that... that strange air of meaning something very important and then meaning nothing at all. Like 'All Natural', 'Neutral Viewpoint' or 'Mainly Bug-free

Ready, Fight!

I'm part Asian, but where I grew up most of my life, that's pretty much == "10000% asian holy-crap why dont' you have an accent and know kung-karate!? " Asian. My Junior High had, uh, 3 Asians, I think, if we are counting me, which I rarely do. I moved Grade 10 to some city school. The mullets weren't as rampant, and the 1972 Camaros and '82 corvettes were replaced with cars that were so riced up they made "The Fast & The Furious" vehicles look like your grandma's K-Car. With the beeping reverse. Supras, RX-7s, s2000s, cars that had wheels that were more expensive as my first car. Oh, and the school was about 90% not-white (where not-white is Indian or Asian (where Asian is Korean, Japanese, Filipino, Chinese (where Chinese is all the way from hard core Honger who comes to school in a Mercedes 500 SL to the CBC who doesn't know Dim Sum from KFC's boneless wings))). It was a slight adjustment for me. One of these adjustments wa

Garage Sale

It's a strange mutual delusion, garage sales. All you wanna do is get rid of your crap: a 1992 poster of a Chevrolet Corsica; hulking plastic toys that had brief yet rabidly followed cartoon series; candlestick holders that, now that you have kids, are just a trip and mistimed fall to be featured in next month's "Holy Crap What's That Impaled In a Youngster's Skull" Quarterly supplemental; a shag carpet sampler. We know this stuff is junk. Undeniably, objects that will never ever be used in any capacity. But somehow it seems too useful, or maybe too kitschy (this means ugly, but in a nostalgic way) to just throw in the garbage. This stuff just skirts outside the confines of real junk and earns its place on the Shelf Of Storing. The Shelf of Storing is that little cubby hole or perfectly situated storage rack in the pantry that would just be great to hold something you'd really need if it wasn't carrying your complete collection of 1981 Hot Wheels and


For the first time, in, well, ever, the Missus and I went out for a night, that is, over night, without the kids. For those of you without kids, I'm sure you're thinking of one thing , for those with kids, you're thinking what we were thinking, "Uninterrupted sleep!" Whereas the world often thinks of Vancouver as 'pretty' and 'quaint' (if the world ever thinks of the hamlet of Vancouver, at all), Vancouver is a pit of despair, grime, and abject villainy compared to the capital of British Columbia, Victoria. Named after a German who nevertheless epitomizes Britain, Victoria is a place for, as they say, "the newly wed and the nearly dead". Weddings and pensioners abound. It's a city that looks like it was painstakingly crafted, brick by brick to be the quaintest, most flower basket festooned city in all of North America. There are little pubs that must've cost a fortune to look 'just right', where 'right' is whatever

First Bike

What was your first bike? I grew up in a largish family, last. This means that while I may have been the 'baby' (a moniker and reputation no self-respecting sibling would cotton to), almost everything I ever had was a hand-me-down. I think, actually, I got my first new NEW bike in my 2nd year of university. But, back to first bikes. Your very very first bike? What was it? Did you dream about it, have a Sears catalog cutout that you kept under your Star Wars pillow case, know every minutae and every word of the sales copy? Was it a Schwinn ten-speed? A Mongoose BMX? A, heaven forbid, Huffy? I don't recall ever really wanting anything for an inordinate amount of time (the hope I'd get some newest-fangled thingamadoodle was quashed pretty early and often), and a bike was no exception. I saw BMX Bandits , sure, but I don't think I ever thought of having one of those. I wasn't cool enough or adventurous enough, and besides, turning on the TV to watch Electric Company

The Last Time

Looking at my collection of Autobots in my cubicle (the ones who make Hyperion, if you must know), a re-occurring thought, uh, occurred. We never think about it, but there's always a Last Time for something, right? Say, I used to play with Transformers, but one day, one day it was the very last day I'd ever transform Optimus and make that transforming noise. There's no real sense of occasion, it just stumbles across us, and soon we're listening to "Misty Mountain Top" by Zeppelin and trying to grow a respectable mullet. Optimus forgotten, the rad awesome voice of Soundwave a glimmer of a memory. And one day, you give up Zeppelin, and move onto Sound Garden, or Ice-T, or Street Fighter II. There are these ephemeral hobbies and interests that take up so much of our world and our time, that shape how we see the world and what we see of it. I don't think that, while in the throes of some wicked Joe Satriani lick or finishing the last panel of a Power Pack comi

Richmond Night Market

thanks to ydhsu for the pic This past weekend we decided, to hell with curfews, likely meltdowns, a napalm powered cranky toddler with lungs of a robotic screaming dinosaur, we were going out. OUT. As in, out of the home! When it's nighttime! We are a young and semi-but-not-really-free family! We can do whatever the heck we want! Maybe even swear, or eat fast food! Course, we didn't want to go too crazy. It's not like we were going out to the local indie movie festival followed by a Slam Poetry competition and finished by a after-hours rave at a disused grain elevator. But, you know, something semi-exciting! We settled on the Richmond Night Market. Apparently the largest night market in Canada, which, is, well I'm not sure that's saying all to much. In a country where the weather is lethally cold, malarially humid, or 'meh, you call this summer!?', I'm not sure we can say we lead the charge in Night Richmond, for those of you who don&

K.I.T.T.'s Diary Entry : Day Off

8:03 AM : Michael has gone to the beach. He told me to "take a load off, you know, just let it all hang out". I'm certain I don't know what that means, and if Michael keeps hitting those donuts, I'm sure he'll know it all too well. Leather jackets do not stretch well. 8:39 AM : Tried a 'car wash'. The machine, some behemoth of a thing, tried to touch me. I've made a note to get my missiles reloaded by the Foundation. 10:21 AM : Michael phoned me on his wristwatch, asked me, "How it was all going, good buddy." That watch is not for small talk. I am not amused. 11:55 AM : Tested my oil slick deployment mechanism. Not far from where Michael was swimming, coincidentally. 12:03 PM : Tried listening to some Bach or Mozart on the local classical music station. It's been replaced by two 'shock jocks' who are terribly interested in a young celebrity's mammary glands. Miffed. 1:44 PM : Feeling... spritely. Clipped a small VW Bug th

Greetings to Invading Alien Empires by Kale Hashling, president, Int'l Quisling Society

Thanks to Faux Real, for his inspired BLAG idea. Greetings New Overlords (or Insectoid Hivemind or Robotic Carnivourous Enslavement Franchisers or Bombastic Militaristic Despotic Regime Of Unimaginable Power)! Well hey there! Didn't think you'd be here so soon. This is a mighty fine planet we got here, it's got rivers and lakes and oceans; forests and jungles and tundras. A vast array of animal and plant species, that, while diminishing at alarming rates, are still pretty impressive. There's not a small amount of rare minerals to be harvested from any manner of buildings and installations. Or, if you so desire, right from the earth's mantle. Yeah, that's right, we still got some right in the rock! How quaint! Our people are smart and work hard when given the proper incentives. We can survive under a number of conditions, or make suits to do so without slowing down your entire regime and/or empire. Our lack of any substantial telepathic or telekinetic abilities m

Car Names That Never Made It

I have, it must be said, all the knowledge about auto-vehicular petrol-powered combustion-engine carriages as one who might have been paying attention elsewhere (for the life of me, I can't think of what) when Manly Interests were passed out. I like muscle cars, and Cars That Go Needlessly Fast, as much as the next guy, but I'll be damned if I know what a cam is, or why it has to be dual or overhead. This, however, has not stopped my friend cheesoning from recommending a topic about cars. 1987 Chrysler Kamikazee (Station Wagon)- Thinking that it was the culture that was drawing American consumers to Honda's and Toyotas. Liking the idea of a 'divine wind' moving family units about, executives greenlit this car line immediately before it was caught by an intern. 2001 Honda Ascend (12 mpg SUV) Featured real time NYSE ticker, PDF delivery of Fast Company, Business 2.0, and Red Herring, and self-inflating tires. 1975 Ford Unassailable Bastion (5 mpg 389 hp Sedan) 100% Am


My workgroup asked me to write an office-buzzword compliant email. Er, for fun, I hope. I’d like to kick-start a bluesky iniative to start an end-to-end process re-imagineering of how we do our client-centric enterprise software deployments. There’ll be no gold-plating at this webinar. Nothing but down to the bone, boots on the grounds, eyes on the level thinking that’ll paradigm shift how we do our outside the box creative restructuring (creatucturing!). Think of it as a way to touch base with all stakeholders, so we can go forward while keeping everyone in the loop without having to run a flag up the pole. A solid group meeting where we can all re-integrate our pro-active thought showers and our reflective extra-norma revolution memes. This is a heads up. At this moment in time it’s just a call to arms to get us all singing from the same sheet. If we really want to push the envelope and get 360 degree thinking involved in our dynamic work flow processes, this is the only way to get

Borrowed Culture

I was at my friend's baby's birthday. Those bastions of parenthood where nobody is having a riotously good time but most everyone is having a pleasant time and small talk is kept to the same subjects and nobody imbibes too much alcohol. Good times for parents comes down to how much you can proffer your child to someone else and perhaps relax your brain muscles and worrying bones for a little while. The plus side is that the blissfully unaware toddler/baby neophytes think that chasing after alarmingly fast and danger-oblivious children is fantastic fun , at least for the 1-2 hours they do it, so it's really a win-win. Anyhow, my friend had some memorabilia from the company they work for, from when they had business in India. Let's call it MegaCorp. So MegaCorp has an India branch, and they use a tiny cricket bat to symbolize this. That is, cricket = India. Which got me thinking to how so many cultures take various things from other cultures, and over time, decide th

Closet Trekkie

During a backyard chat with one of our neighbours, the new Star Trek movie came up. Me, being a resident nerd, was naturally prodded as to my undying excitement and unfettered joy regarding it. I'm not a huge Trek fan. I watched The Next Generation with my family when it first came out, it was like Family Ties except with less cunning and more phasers. I skipped most of the other series except for a bit of Deep Space Nine , and then only because it had Hawk from Spencer for Hire (he was one bad ass mofo (possibly more than Tubbs)). So, obviously, in revealing all this, I suppose to the average normal (non nerd), I am a Trekkie. But us nerds know what a real Trekkie is. They have memorabilia, they go to conventions, they know at least a few passing phrases in Klingon. Not that there is anything wrong with that , but I'm not a Trekkie. In any event, one of my neighbours looked at me slyly and said, "You're a, a 'Trekkie'", as if accusing me of harbouring

Update On The Brood

Owl Jr. is now 4 months, so he really doesn't have a lot of interesting things going on. He eats, he sleeps, he evacuates his bowels. He is of the age where he has just discovered his hand, so most of the time he's sitting in his seat, watching his hand move in front of his face like a stoner, and you just know he's thinking 'Whoaaa, did you guys see that? It just like-- whoooaa there it goes again.' His expressions are limited to glee, probably from passing gas; devious scheming, I don't know why; and his usual expression of deep, deep depression. Yeah, I don't know what's up either. Owlet has become more vociferous and independent as she's gotten older. She's now the ripe old age of 2 years, 9 months. She absolutely must do everything herself, even the things that might get her maimed or killed... especially those things. I try and keep her from doing those things. Mostly. I cede to simple, non-lethal things she wants to do herself. After get

Mr. Steven's Thoughtful Consideration On How To Spend His Day Off

Mr. Steven's is the main protagonist and narrator of the most excellent book, "Remains of the Day". It might help you to think of Anthony Hopkins at his most restrained and polite while you read this. It has come to my attention that while it was, indeed, lovely to spend time in Coventry last year, it being the home of Eliot and being a wonderful metropolis still possessed of small-village England that, I think you'll agree, is essential in this age, it might perhaps be time to reconsider how I might spend my next sabbatical. There's something to be said about the roar of the engine, don't you agree? Twenty First Century barrelling down upon the gentlemen of England, and indeed, the gentleman's gentleman. One should be steadfast in ones ways, to be sure, but there's something to be said for foresight, and the courage to embrace approaching trends, no matter how low they might seem at first. We can't all keep our desires lashed against the very ide

Newsletter Meeting

The work newsletter I've been writing for had their editorial board meeting a few weeks ago. I volunteered to attend; the horrors of meetings long since worn with time and ignorance. Maybe it was morbid curiousity, maybe it was the unreasonable belief that I'd some how come out of my shell and start contributing and brainstorming and gesturing manically towards trenchant Power Point slides. Maybe the solitude of staring at a computer screen for weeks on end had gotten to me. Maybe I was hoping that I'd enter in a smoke-filled room thick with the heady brew of cross-talking think-tanking and creative outbursts the likes of which haven't been seen since Hollywood did their impression of a New York newsroom. Ah, I know why I really went. It was to meet people who had almost certainly actually read my articles. I mean, they'd have to, in the course of doing layout of editing or whatever it is that editorial boards do. And sure, maybe it'd only be in passing, or by

A Fate Worse Than Death

So I've been added to a Facebook spam list by one of my former classmates from that YA fiction class. It's related spam, anyways, Creative Things Going On Aboot Town That Are In Someway Related To Him. At least, that's how I read it. And maybe it's not a spam list, but when you send an invitation out to 121 'close' friends it's hard to feel like the invite was really personalized, you know? Anyways, I was invited to a fund raiser for a literary magazine I'd never heard of. Not that I know of many literary mags. And I'm pretty sure the mark of a good lit mag is that no one has heard of it. Street cred, as I understand. There was a nagging part of me that told me I should probably attend. Images of hanging out like Hemingway with all his writerly friends, discussing... well, whatever writers discuss, Post-Modernism, Derrida, liver cirrhosis. I had in my verdant imagination an idea of a culturally rich group of peers all riffing off each other. Discussi

Sentences That Imply Their Opposites

As usual, I rely on my friends and random commenters for my topics, for I am weak in imagination and possess a paucity of originality not seen since Hollywood discovered the Sequel. This week's idea came from metamonk. I can't link to him since he has no web presence to speak of. No real presence either, now that I think of it. I imagine him to be the sort who knows all about high energy radio waves and how much concrete you'd need to go 'unnoticed'. He's also the sort, although he's never said it, who's quite comfortable using the phrase 'off the grid'. This is what happens when you spend the most formative years of your life reading books on espionage, apparently. Onto the topic: Sentences That Imply Their Opposites I don't want to be mean but... I'm not in it for the money... Comic book collecting isn't just for kids and 40 year old virgins who live in their parents basements, you know. This won't hurt a bit. Far be it for me t


Joe Smith, the head administrator here, is leaving, after many years of faithful service. I have only one recollection of him, which I squeezed for all it was worth to write a decent column for our newsletter. Yes, he actually did do this. Enthusiasm is something we all aspire to have, in some way. It keeps work fresh, coworkers fired up, and adds a bit of pep when your mind wants desperately to go on cruise control. Not all the time, of course; no one wants to be the perpetually perky upstart who needs 37 cups of coffee and 2 hours of Elmo just to get out of bed in the morning. The sort who causes everyone to roll their eyes and start speaking sarcasm as their second language. But some enthusiasm, even the odd outburst of Bright-Eyed and Bushy-Tailedness is good. Even welcome. And if there is one word that best describes Joe Smith to me, it'd be 'enthusiasm' (the good kind). There's one instance that comes to mind, where he had to get us rank-and-file enthused. I mean,

This Is What Freedom Looks Like

This is actually a picture of an internet friend of mine, Chris B . Er. e-friend. Someone I met online. You know, there's no way to phrase that that won't make you stand up and holler at the screen "YOU ARE A GIGANTIC NERD". So I'm going to stop trying to make it normal, because damnit, I'm not, not very, anyways. Oh shit, I should've gone with penpal. There's nothing creepy about penpals. Damnit. Onto the picture. My dad was big into candid shots. He'd sorta stalk his kids, us jumping off the couch or trying to suffocate each other or throw small, blunt objects at each other with surprising regularity. He'd hold this Canon point and shoot by his leg, all spy like. And then, snap. We'd all go "aww maaan" like this was the most worstest thing he could do. Of course, years later, some of those pictures are pretty priceless. One of me playing 'Submarine Captain' in the toilet comes to mind. Legs fully in, half crouched in th