Category Archives: Journal

This is me rambling about me, mostly. Current stuff: home, family, my head’s on fire… that kind of thing. This also includes everything imported from LiveJournal.

Hello, It’s Been A While, Is This Thing On?

It’s been a while since I blogged about anything. For those of you awaiting movie reviews, I apologize. I’ve been busy with a great many things, and kind of forgot how to leave the house.

Building this kind of thing probably doesn’t help in that regard.

The work surface and the wooden cabinets are new. Sandra did all of the sanding and staining, and they’re gorgeous (and a delight to touch.) Also, all those wooden cabinets light up when I open the doors.

It could be argued that this is a huge expenditure of time for a hobby station, but I did this as practice for when we install illuminated cabinets in the kitchen we’re about to remodel.

As anyone who has hung cupboards can tell you, practicing this kind of thing is key, because there are mistakes you only learn not to make by making them. Fortunately for my office, I’m a fast learner.

None of this is particularly interesting to you, I’m sure, but at least that photo explains why I haven’t yet seen SHAZAM or How To Train Your Dragon 3. (I’m going to see SHAZAM today, so you should be getting a proper movie review this evening.)

 

Every Day is Thanksgiving Here

Today is Thanksgiving here in the US, a holiday one might describe as a celebration of plenty through ritualistic overconsumption. In that light I’d be sending the wrong message if I said that every day is Thanksgiving at my house.

Less cynically, Thanksgiving is an expression of gratitude through ceremonial indulgence, but okay, that’s not less-cynically enough, so I’m going to back all the way out of that and try an approach that doesn’t have quite so much stuffing in the mostly-metaphorical poultry carcass.

Here in our home we are aware, every day, of the blessings that you, our readers, patrons and friends, provide for us. We say “thank you” so much that we worry the meaning may have bled out of those words. We don’t want them to sound rote, but we can’t not keep saying them.

We just closed a Kickstarter which bears witness in a numerical way of the support for which we’re thankful. With every update to that project we expressed thanks, and every time we did so we had the aforementioned concern that maybe we were saying it too much, or incorrectly.

Those are risks we’ll take, because the alternative—not saying thank you at all—simply will not do.

Thank you! Yes, we DO think this every day, and we say it as often as occasion permits. Today we’ll be overeating and relaxing with extended family, and the only work I’ll do is this blog post, and it just now occurred to me that I cannot recall many instances in my previous career in which  the public expression of sincere thanks was part of the job.

So thank you for putting me to work in a field where gratitude is a required part of the mind set. It feels good to be grateful, and better to say it.

WXR18 – Amazing, Yet Again

Sandra and I have returned from the 2018 Writing Excuses Retreat. This was the sixth year the event has been held, and it was the fourth year it’s been held aboard a ship.

It was wonderful.

Sure, I got to see the ship’s medical bay¹, and I’m nine pounds heavier than I was two weeks ago, but it was totally worth it. I ruined comedy for all the students by showing them how the sausage is made, I saw a sunrise take shape across the Gulf of Mexico, and as an unexpected and delightful bonus I got back just in time to celebrate NASA’s 60th birthday on stage for an episode of Houston, We Have a Podcast.²

We’ll open registration for next year’s event sometime in the next three weeks, but you can pencil in some dates on your calendar now.

WXR19 runs from September 13th to the 25th of 2019, starting in Houston, and progressing to Galveston, then setting sail. I think it’s around $1,900 for nine days of writing, instruction, networking, and flash-mobbing one of the bars on Royal Caribbean’s Liberty of the Seas. 

I’m already looking forward to it, but I’m also quite happy to be home. I’ve got comics to draw, and (at least) nine pounds to lose.


¹ Laryngitis. Very annoying, but at least I was done teaching by that point.
² Our episode will air in mid-October. I’ll link to it, because holy crap I was in the auditorium in NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston and they gave me a live mic.

The Big Five-Zero

I’m fifty years old.

Wow.

I don’t want skull-shaped balloons¹, or a headstone-shaped cake. I just want to get my stuff done, and be surrounded by people who are happy. If the pattern holds true, my own happiness will follow pretty naturally on that, especially if the stuff I’m getting done is stuff that helps the people around me be happy, and happens to be fun to do.

It didn’t take the full fifty years for me to figure that out, but it did take longer than I wanted it to.


¹ Okay, skull-shaped balloons shaped liked actual skulls could be pretty nifty, but don’t bother with the grave-cake. Grey frosting is for yuck.