Thursday, October 29, 2009

Snow Days 2009

The last couple of days, I have been snowed in. Oh, I could have gotten someplace if I really wanted to, but I am finding that as I grown older that the urge to brave the weather lessens every year.

I have discovered that you can tell a lot by how someone spends a snow day. In my case, I napped a lot. My wife, Toni, spent the day napping also (she thought she was coming down with some bug).

I could have spent it working, but my heart was not into it. The same goes for homework. I am still having days when I hear my sister's opinion of my entire life in my head (basically, she thinks that I am doing everything wrong and generally wasting my time while leeching off of others).

It is for that fact that I really do not feel guilty about not accomplishing anything on these snow days; after all, I am not expected to. There is also the little fact that I am doing National Novel Writing Month starting on November 1st. I figure that considering that I am going to be attempting to write 50,000 words in thirty days, plus do everything else that I need to do in November, that a couple of naps while being snowed in are not the end of the world. In fact, I might actually earn them next month.

Early warning---most of my posts that I do in November are going to read: Day X of NaNoWriMo, Y words done, Z words to go.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Buying office supplies

Today, I was at Office Depot buying office supplies.

The errands originally started out just as a Petsmart run, must fed the kitties, and ended up being the typical half-dozen stores run that my wife and I normally engage in. It takes up the entire Saturday and leaves every little room to get anything else done.

Anyway, I realized that I am weird when it comes to buying office supplies. Now Toni was fading fast, due to her fibromyalgia. And there I was really proud of myself because I found the last bonus box of HP paper; it had an extra two reams of paper for free.

Of course, if you know what a ream of paper is without looking it up, we may have to talk about your office supply problem next.

So getting free paper made me happy, as did having a Worklife Reward…forty dollars worth, which says a lot about how much office supplies I buy on a regular basis.

What type of person becomes happy because they are getting free office supplies? Especially when it turns out to be a box of printer paper?

The really scary part is that I suspect that out there someplace in the world, there is someone else who will understand what I am saying.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Do you really want to use that word?

As a writer, I tend to be amused by language. Today I recieved one of those notorious Nigera emails (though this one claims to be out of Hong Kong), and I just had to laugh at one of the words used. Here is the sentence:

I want to consumate a legitimate transaction of Thirty-Eight million Five Hundred and Ninety One Thousand Five Hundred and Ninety Five United State Dollars.

Consumate? Is it just me, or does that word conjure the wrong image for what this person is trying to convey? That word actually says what the sender of the message wants to do to the reciever of the message, and I am sure that the sender did not want to make it that clear.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

NaNoWriMo is approaching fast

National Novel Writing Month (NaNiWriMo), which takes place in November, is fast approaching. And I am so not ready for it.

I have yet to slip over to the NaNoWriMo website and register for this year. I have yet to figure out my plot, or even what type of novel I am aiming for this year. I have yet to choose my inspirational/plot suggestion/grammar checking book. And I have yet to attempt to get ahead on my college homework to attempt to make any of this happen.

A large part of delay is the fact that my sister's voice is still ringing loudly in my head. There is nothing like being told by your favorite relative that you are wasting your time pursuing writing, a college education, and your career to take the winds out of your sails...except maybe a bullet though the heart.

Ironically, this may actually be the best chance I have to actually hack out 50,000 words in the space of thirty days. Revenge and proving people wrong is a big motivator in my family.

I guess we will see at the end of November if she did me a favor or not.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Quote of the day: Renard on literature

Literature is an occupation in which you have to keep proving your talent to people who have none.
Jules Renard

Friday, October 9, 2009

Overheard at Best Buy

Last weekend, my wife and I dropped her laptop off at Bestbuy. We brought it at the beginning of the semester, and it has been useless sonce we brought it.

When we first brought it, we listened to the salesperson and brought a different anti-virus than Norton. And we had them optimized the two laptops (I also got one for business and school purposes; sharing the desktop computer is just too much of a pain).

Then we went home, and I unstalled Norton (which is bundled on every computer sold nowdays, or so it seems). It came out very easily. Then I installed the other anti-virus software (Trend Micro if you are curious) and Word 2007.

Then there was the standard Windows of which ended up in the blue screen of death on Toni's computer. So we ended taking her computer back to Bestbuy to have them fix that.

After getting it back (with them having to roll back the computer), all of a sudden, I could not get Norton to uninstall. And I spent hours trying to get it off the computer. So again back to Bestbuy, where I overheard a nerd say to another nerd (or whatever they are---maybe geeks) that the Norton removal tool was on the Malware disk.

Bestbuy calls Norton Malware.

Of course, after fighting with it that long, and remembering the night that I had my computer (the desktop) remote controlled from India (I think that the Norton service technician was in India) when we updated the Norton Internet Security, I understand the label.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Quote of the day: Dahlberg on motives for writing

Those who write for lucre or fame are grosser than the cartel robbers, for they steal the genius of the people, which is its will to resist evil.
Edward Dahling
American Author and Critic

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Silly summary of Isaiah 6:1-9

Silly summary of Isaiah 6.1-9, another bit from the Adopt a Prophet and make a facebook page for them assignment for Biblical Literature class.

Death: King Uzziah is dead.

God: I am sitting in my throne room.

Seraphim: We are also in the throne room.

Isaiah: Sorry, I did not know anyone was in here.

Seraphim: Holy, holy, holy is HaShem, Master of Legions; the whole world is filled with his glory.

Isaiah: Woe is me, for I am doomed: for I am a man of impure lips and I dwell among a people with impure lips, for my eyes have seen the King, HaShem, Master of Legions.”

Seraphim: Behold, this coal has touched your lips; your iniquity has gone away and your sin shall be atoned for.

God: Whom shall I send, and who shall go for us?

Isaiah: Here I am! Send me!

God: Good, a volunteer.

Seraphim: It is a good thing that he volunteered; we are all out of burning bushes.

God: Say to the people---

Isaiah: What people?

God: ---Surely, you hear, but you do not comprehend; and surely you see, but you fail to understand.

Isaiah: Oh! Those people!

God: This people is fattening its heart, hardening its ears, and sealing its eyes, lest it see with its eyes, hear with its ears, and understand with its heart, so that it will repent and be healed.

Obama: We need to reform health care and education.

God: Who are you?

Obama: I am the chosen instrument of change.

Isaiah: I thought I was.

God: You are.

Isaiah: Who is?

Obama: Who is?

Seraphim: There should be a law against parodies like this.

Goofy summary of Isaish 1:10-20

Goofy summary of Isaiah 1.10-20 that was done for the Adopt a Prophet and create a facebook page for them project (for the Bible as Literature class):
(MDE: I actually made a mistake here; it was actually the Chiefs of Sodom and the people of Gomorrah being addressed here. But someplace in my mind, these two people belong to Israel.)

God to Israel: Why do I need your numerous sacrifices?

Israel to God: Have another ox!

God to Israel: It is the incense of abomination to me!

Israel to God: Have another meal offering!

God to Israel: I am FULL!

Israel to God: New moon! Time for another ox!

God to Israel: Another empty sacrifice. Why can’t you just live ethically? And quit sending me Happy Meals!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Ruickbie v. Moonstone copyright dispute

Here are the facts:

Leo Ruickbie, Ph.D. included Origins of Halloween (and possibly other articles) by Rowan Moonstone in his Samhain Sabbat; this material was included in the Riders of the Crystal Wind Book of Shadows (a non-profit gift to the pagan community). He has also copied material from Dorothy Morrison, Joe Berthancourt, Leighanne Hussey and the OTO (or so Moonstone's allegiation claims).

His defense is that the work was in the public domain despite the authors' copyright notice (1989), and that his inclusion of the material in a for-profit work was permissible under fair use.

Rowan Moonstone said:

Please be advised that any inclusion of anything written by Rowan Moonstone in any work edited, written or distributed by Dr. Leo Ruickbie is not authorized. I have expressly forbidden him from using anything that I have ever written, or will write in the future, in any of his works now and in the future---Rowan Moonstone (October 2009).

Ruikbie has removed Samhain Sabbat from sale before a single copy was sold. There was some communication between the two parties, then communications broke down. As always in a situation like this, there are conflicting stories about what really was said by whom.

We do know that Ruickbie advised Morgan Drake Eckstein that he could be sued, claiming that by publishing the original statement of Rowan Moonstone that MDE has became the publisher of said statement and therefore liable to legal action himself (supposely for libel, slander and hate mongering). MDE considered using freedom of the press as his defense.

Instead MDE took down the original post by Moonstone, and substituted this one. These are the facts...therefore draw your own conclusions about the people involved.

Edited yet again on 6 October 09---any day now we are going to end up with a post about the curse of people trying to control the new media.

Thinking about my NaNoWriMo plot

Yesterday, I was visiting the local Denver support site for National Novel Writing Month (can you write 50,000 words in a month?!) and hit the plot me button. Got this for a plot.

While traveling to Timbuktu via pack mule, a man with horns lives in a dungeon creating shadow puppets.

It is probably as good as any plot that I am going to walk into NaNoWriMo with. So far, in the past, I have tried Maritian colony murder mystery, and fairy tales gone wrong.

Then again, I may not even need a plot. Last year, I ended up dropping out early in the month as term papers took me out. We will see about this year.

Of course, this year I have the additional handicap of my sister's voice ringing in my ears; basically, she exploded at me for being a selfish b******, and told me that I will never be a writer. There were a lot of other stuff said...needless to say, I still feel an urge to stuck her head in a toliet.

Anyway, it is just 27 days and 12 hours until the writing frenzy begins. Are you ready?

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Quote of the day: Myself on writing goals

The other day, I was writing a letter to a friend, and the truth about my writing goals came out. It is enough to make any writer with literary ambitions to spin like a top.

My goal is not to be a writer; my goal is to be a hack. I want to write "trash" and "nonsense" (as many people consider my chosen subjects), and mysteriously make a living while doing it. Nothing that I have ever written, and got paid upfront for (or shortly thereafter) will ever be considered great writing.

In other words, don't plan on me making my way into the literary magazines or the ranks of the classical writers (the ones that everybody must read in college literature) anytime soon.