Saturday, January 28, 2006

Still sick, and birthday party

Not much to write about this week, it's been *cough* *cough* and *sneeze* *sneeze* all week at home.  I've been lucky to get away with a little congestion with all the disgusting bodily fluids leaking and flying out of my little ones onto me, so I guess I can't complain much.  At least we all seem to be getting better, so another day or two of medicine and rest will get us back to normal.  Also, thanks to Manda for starting the birthday celebration idea.  Check the MySpace bulletin for the time and location--and I expect everyone to be there to publicly humiliate me! ;)

Monday, January 23, 2006

Underworld Evolution

The skinny: Good, but could have been better.

If you've never had the pleasure of watching the first Underworld movie, do yourself a favor and go buy a copy and watch it. Then go see the sequel in theaters now. Watching them back-to-back certainly helps make the beginning of the jarringly jumpy second installment easier to digest.

Evolution starts out with a neat flashback to the year 1202 where we see some of the backstory that drives the main plotline. From the previews that were packaged with the unrated extended edition of the first movie, it seemed like the flashback would have been longer and played a bigger part of the film, but it only lasted for a few minutes before the audience was greeted by the familiar Underworld title shot. Suddenly, we jump to Selene and Michael somewhere out in Russia (did geography get thrown out the window too?), a mysterious and well-manicured man with a crack team of military soldiers watching and cleaning up after the Death Dealers, and the vampire Marcus going berserk for seemingly no reason. The story eventually ties all of these elements together in a fairly decent plot that actually makes more sense then some other movies today.

Unfortunately, gone are the velvety-rich gothic atmosphere and the deeper politics of the Death Dealers' mansion, instead replaced by lots of cold snow, lonely rocks, and gobs of blood and violence. Sadly the omnipresent threat of the first movie, the Lycans, make few scant appearances in this episode, mostly in the flashbacks and as slaves to one of the vampires. In fact, most of the great elements of the first movie are absent here, but fans such as myself will still find plenty of goodness to ahem sink our teeth into. Another thing I found unsettling was the convenient closeness of all of the locations in the film... the entire soirée seemed to take place in little over 24 hours but much ground seemed to have been covered with little travel and effort.

The pluses of the movie? Well, how about a very sensual and revealing sex scene? We never actually get a complete shot of anything vital, but seeing the big screen filled with nekkid Kate Beckinsale is a sure enough reason for any straight young guys (okay, and the same goes for Scott Speedman for the ladies). Lots of blood and violence--almost excessively so--abounds in this episode, including a few shots I found amusing by not editing out the splatter of the crimson fluids on the camera lens. Another nice touch was the LFE (low-frequency effects) channel being super-spammed for the uber-powerful characters--I never knew bass could be so loud and deep! The ending is predictable and intentionally leaves itself wide open for another installment, which could be a good thing.

If Ms. Beckinsale's husband, director Len Wiseman, would have focused less on making masturbatory material for himself and more on making a better movie, then I'd be more hopeful about a third installment. We'll have to wait to see what the box office figures show to find out if they'll let him make a third one. I love the whole concept, so I'll probably go back and watch Evolution again and buy the DVD when it comes out. Like I said before, it's not a fantastic movie and it's not horrible, but it certainly could have been better. Bring back the finesse and dark beauty of the first film and stop trying to drown us in blood and gore.

What kind of Pagan are you?

You scored as Ecclectic Pagan. A veritable blend of all the pantheons and perhaps a dash of a few other religions as well, you're the versitile Ecclectic Pagan. You have no problem wearing an ankh while setting an offering to Herne on your alter just below your image of Hera. You don't believe in coloring within the lines, and are a bright free-thinker. While you respect the views of your fellow pagans, as far as you're concerned, religion is the sky, and there's no one about to clip your wings with lines and limitations.

Ecclectic Pagan


Zoroastrian Pagan


Shamanic Pagan


Eastern Pagan


Celtic Pantheonic Pagan


Egyptian Pantheonic Pagan


Kabbalistic Pagan


Greek Pantheonic Pagan


Roman Pantheonic Pagan


Norse Pantheonic Pagan (Asatru)


Sumerian, Babylonian, and Mesopotamian Pagans


Catholic (Pagan?)


What kind of Pagan are you?
created with

It's all about keeping an open mind! I don't push my beliefs on others and I expect the same in return. Religion is a personal thing, and what may work for you may not work for me. All that matters is that you have strong conviction in what you believe, not because your family says so or because others think it's cool to be a certain faith.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Sick sucks

So daycare has its advantages and disadvantages. The big advantage is that the kids are taken care of, have fun, and learn stuff while I can go work and pay bills. The disadvantage is how easily the little ones get sick and spread it amongst themselves. Poor Kaylee was just fine last night and this woke up this morning caughing and sounding just terrible before puking curdled nastiness into my hands (it's all I had to catch it, otherwise I'd have a smelly puddle on the carpet). She's been pretty lethargic all day and has napped more than played, but all afternoon my stomach has felt extremely upset and it feels like I've caught whatever she has. Ugh, I just want to curl up and die in a warm, dark corner for a while, but Feydra seems to be resistant to the sickness and is happily playing here in the living room with me, so no dying for me. I'm loading up on the orange juice now and if I'm up to it, I might drown the sickness in some alcohol late tonight to kill it off.

Friday, January 20, 2006

End-of-week life drama update

The week is winding down, and it's not like the drama has even let up any so it's time for another update. For those keeping score at home, it's been six weeks since the car died and got the ball rolling on the non-stop catastrophies in my life, but I'm still alive.

The setting of the latest incident was Wednesday evening. Earlier that day, I had taken a taxi from home to the daycare to drop off the kids, then took the bus into work the rest of the way. The Nameless One (I don't even know what to call her anymore, but readers of Terry Goodkind will recognize this name) had the car, was supposed to get off from work at 2pm and have plenty of time to pick up the kids before the daycare closed at 7pm.

At about 7:30 I get a call from the daycare on my cell phone and a feeling of dread washes over me. The kids were still there and the other phone numbers they tried calling had no answer. At the tail end of this conversation, my office line rang and the caller ID showed it was her. "I need you to do me a huge favor and call the daycare and let them know I'm really really sorry and that I'll be there in 10 minutes to get the kids."

I called the daycare back up to let them know that someone was on the way. They were relieved, but the lady also let me know that they would have to charge us extra for staying after closing. I told them that it was unavoidable at this point and that she would have to pay for it since she was the one that was late. I really didn't want to know what could have been so important that she couldn't pick up our kids on time.

Shortly thereafter, I get a call from the Nameless One again screeching about the $90 the daycare is charging us for staying open late. For effect, I merely stayed quiet throughout the whole frantic tirade and for a few moments after it was over before giving my reply in an even and calm voice. "I'm sorry, but I feel that you need to be the one that pays it since you were late in picking the kids up." That just set her boiling and I got a cold reply of "Fine! I'm on my way to pick you up, so make sure you're outside and ready to go," before she rudely hung up.

The drive home was punctuated by even more frantic shrieking and guilt-tripping, most notably by the "I hope you're happy because I watched a man die today" attempts. I sat in silence for most of the trip, simply letting the misplaced emotions go in one ear and right back out the other. I was in no mood to hear the story behind the dead man, and if it were true I knew that the universe was trying to restore balance for all of her recent shit and was trying to teach her a lesson. There was no sense in letting her talk freely about it to me to feel better yet, it needed to steep inside of her twisted soul for a while for a much stronger effect. Sensing her words were having no effect, she seemed to make one last-ditch effort by calling a friend to "check" and see if they were still going to come over to pick her up and then went into the dramatics to illustrate a point that someone still cared about her "fragile" emotions.

It has been about 36 hours since she left home, returning only twice for a moment to retrieve some item from the bedroom and quickly leaving again. The whole story takes another odd turn when I get a message from her work on the answering machine last night from the new manager that was just hired this week. Simply put, he wanted to know if she was going to work today (Friday) or skip work like she did the past two days. On top of all the crap lately, lying gets added to the list, and it doesn't affect me at all but the truth sure does reflect poorly on her at work. If things are going so bad, why go and make things worse by endangering your job and risking getting fired?

The lies make me question the whole dead man story as well. Within two hours of leaving on Wednesday night, she made her first momentary return and didn't seem the least bit disturbed or sad by the "tragic" events of her day. I checked the Blue Beast before leaving on Thursday morning and the only evidence I could find of any sort of accident was a smear of yellow and white paint on the front left bumper, but no dents or scratches that I could see anywhere else. In a twisted, sad sort of way, I hope a man did die because that's the kind of shock it seems that it will take to teach her that there are serious consequences to her selfishly careless actions. If one doesn't learn a lesson from something like that, it seems hopeless and I don't know what else it could possibly take to drill some sense into a skull that thick.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Proposal for a new national holiday

The SYSTEM isn't stupid, but the PEOPLE in it are.  --Thomas Szasz

We need a National Bumper Sticker Day. Celebrations are in order for those hard-working (and probably underpaid) geniuses that write and sell prose to occupy our minds at red lights. If you have something important to say, it's probably been put onto a bumper sticker. Hell, if we can have Parsley Day--which by the way is February 22nd--then why can't we have a Bumper Sticker Day? Pull out your favorite sticker and wear it on a t-shirt to work to show what's your mind to everyone. Or even better, slap it on the your rear end and putt around work all day showing your sticker with pride! It could be a revolution in free thinking, not to mention the bumper sticker sales industry. ¡Viva la bumper sticker!

Monday, January 16, 2006

It's not too early to think about birthday presents, is it?

Dammit, why does all the cool shit have to get released while you're out of the loop? I suppose that stuff happens more after you get older, married, have kids, and all that fun stuff. Yay. Anyway, screw that inexpensive MP3 player I was eyeing a few weeks ago, THIS is what I want! Guitar Hero for Playstation2! I'm such a Guitar Freaks whore whenever I visit the local Gameworks so the thought of playing that kind of game from home as well (damn you $1 per game arcade!) is just mindblowing. I don't think I'll ever leave the apartment again. I have a birthday coming up next month, and it sure would be nice (hint, hint) to get this as a present! ;)

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Traffic sucks

It's a sad day when you escape getting into a major accident on the freeway, and you don't even get an adrenaline rush anymore because it's so commonplace. Some idiot decided at the last minute--no, it was actually well past last minute--that he wanted to go to the I-10 west exit instead of the I-10 east exit from the Route 60 freeway. This required crossing over the white exit triangle and those annoying little bumpy things, but he did and nearly hit another car in the opposite exit and caused the two cars in front of me to slam on their brakes and swerve, forcing me to go off-roading to avoid hitting either of them. The car behind me was lucky as well and swerved the opposite direction safely. The sad part is that he would have ended up going the same direction and avoided all of this annoyment and frustration if he had just stayed in his lane and went straight ahead. Sheesh. People like him and the lady in this news story make me wonder why we let just about anybody on the road... it should be a strict right, not an abused privilege to drive.

Random thoughts

I'm not sure what I want to write about or even what needs to be written. Lots of stuff going on lately makes the mind a soupy mess, so as soon as I can get my thoughts together, another organized braindump will be posted.

I've been in odd moods lately. Last night was a piano music mood, and this morning is a dark ambient music mood so I have some Gothica and Arcana queued up on Winamp. I also found out that BlutEngel released another album last month, The Oxidising Angel. Hopefully it's as beautiful as Angel Dust was, or even better. Maybe a shot of that will get me out of this soft music rut. =)

Kaylee got a shock on her birthday and accidentally spilled some nail polish on her hands and then smeared it on her face and in her eyes, but she's doing fine now. Current plans are to find some time next weekend to do something special for her (belated, but the 3-year-old won't know the difference).

Meh, no more. I think it's time to go take a long, hot bath and relax for a bit, not to mention doing some thought collecting. I almost feel inspired to do something creative, but whatever it is, it hasn't bubbled far enough up into my conciousness yet.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

What a deal!

So yesterday was the release of the extended 2-disc version of Underworld, and just as I said in previous entries, I headed on out to Best Buy on the way to work to pick up a copy. Unfortunately, the store closest to home was already completely sold out, only a few little cardboard divider things with Selene's picture on them left. The sales rep confirmed that and checked their system to see if nearby stores had any left in stock and luckily one store that is two miles from my work had a half dozen still on the shelves, so off I went again.

After fighting some heavy rush hour traffic, I walked into the store and quickly found and paid for the item I was looking for. I get in the car and rip the packaging open like a kid on Christmas, but a cursory glance through everything included yielded no free movie ticket as advertised. I wandered back in with my receipt and asked someone in the movie department, but he wasn't entirely sure of how the promo worked either and suggested that it may just be hidden somewhere or may need to be cut out of the books or inserts that came inside. Mostly satisfied, I went ahead and drove to work.

My curiosity kept nagging at me, so I checked the online ads again to see if there was some more information on the tickets and sure enough the ticket was actually packaged separately from the movie (because it was a limited-time promo for any of the editions of Underworld or Resident Evil) and it looked like a little cardboard cutout with Selene's picture on it. Yep, the same ones left at the first store. They sold out of the movie, but some people didn't know to pick up the tickets and were gypped like me. I printed the ads, clocked out from work, and drove back over to Best Buy.

This is where I received some of the most helpful and dedicated customer service from anyone at a retail store (thanks to Denny at the I-10 and Ray store!). He scoured the shelves and the computer system, only to find that it wasn't out on display and it was listed under "folk music CDs" in the computer. Thirty units were sent to that store and thirty units were still in stock, but where were they? He checked two different shipments in the back and asked other employees, but this turned up nothing.

As a quick and funny side story, while I was waiting for him to check around, I caught a teenage girl trying to remain unnoticed while "checking out the merchandise." She was apparently checking me out, but failed miserably at remaining discreet and unnoticed because I shot her a smile and she scurried off somewhere blushing, never to be seen again. At least the two college girls that were doing the same thing in the adjacent music section were more experienced, and were I actually shopping instead of standing around waiting, I might have believed their routine.

Anyway, back to the tickets. Denny turned up one dead end after another, but was determined to help me out. I felt kind of silly making him do so much work for a movie ticket worth less than $10, but I decided it was worth it for the other customers who weren't getting their tickets either, kind of like taking one for the team. After close to a half hour of failing, his final suggestion was to talk with the manager about getting an eight-dollar refund, the average price of a non-matinee movie ticket here in Phoenix.

The manager agreed, voided the original transaction, and re-rang up the movie with $8 taken off. So, all in all, I managed to get the new movie, after a little persistence, for only $7.56 after tax, plus a little social entertainment while I waited. The survey will definitely get my compliments, and so will the store manager for Denny's dedicated customer service. Now it's time to watch my movie!! w00t!

Monday, January 09, 2006

On wings of dreams

This is another post mostly for my own benefit, a stream of conciousness exercise to help get thoughts out and organized, and not for disbelievers of dreams and the ways of magick....

It's been a while since I've had a lucid dream. They normally seem to come in strength as the sabbats come but the stress and commotion of last month probably buried any dreams I may have had during Yule under layers of exhaustion. That's why this short one from last night is significant to me. Though not uncommon for it to happen, it's out of cycle and it feels like it probably carries more meanings than usual.

Anyway, there wasn't much to the dream. I saw my astral wings for the first time in the dreamscape, oddly enough from a 3rd-person perspective from the side. Not quite as obnoxiously grand or show-offish as I was hoping for, but somehow very fitting, the wings strongly reminded me of those of an owl. The revered creature of the night commonly associated with great wisdom, and with the great knowledge comes power and responsibility. Also associated with the owl is death, though that may not be a bad thing if taken figuratively, like the death of a bad habit or the removal of a bad influence from one's life. The wings themselves can represent several things as well, including freedom or the arrival of someone or something new and exciting in one's life.

Aside from the grand beauty of finally seeing the wings I have known that I had for a long time, I was granted another deeper view into myself. I could see the spiritual energies flowing about myself. "I" was frozen in time in midflight, to be examined from an outside perspective and given the honor of seeing this outside perspective. I could see the flow of magick coalescing at my grounding point, at the soles of my feet. Almost like a textbook picture, the image changed to reveal a cutaway view of my body to illustrate the flow inside, and my body appeared to act as a conduit--a nexus of sorts--channelling this energy up and out through the top of my head and spraying forth like a sculpture in a water fountain would do. This image also seems significant to myself because of the number of times recently I have mentioned how Arizona seems to be a nexus of sorts, compelling and drawing people here for reasons unknown.

I consider myself to be one of those people drawn by this energy. This "drawing" came up in conversation again with a friend last night as she had felt this pull as well last year. I almost feel that I have somehow aligned or connected myself with this strange energy and that my actions, whether intentional or not, are influenced now by it, almost as if it has become physically manifest through me. I at least feel a bit of relief to have seen the image and know that I don't appear to be taking or redirecting any of the energy for my own purposes, as I have a feeling that the results of doing so would be disasterous.

I also sit here listening to that 10 Years album again, just to have something pleasant and familiar in the background, but having recalled the images from my dream, I sit shocked looking at the cover. I see the pose of the bird in midflight and see my dream image mirrored in it almost exactly. It's possible that the deeper meanings and messages of the music, of which I heard repeatedly last night, may have collected and triggered the release of this lucid dream's message. Not that this is a bad thing, as I think I needed to see this image.

So what does this mean to me? It's hard to tell exactly and I'm still not great at dream interpretation. I may be up for some earthshaking changes in the near future, and only my wisdom and will can get me through the shake-up in one piece. Also, in a recurring theme in the lucid dreams, it may also signify that I am much more than I admit myself to be, and the outside perspective may be trying to give me insight into how others may view me. However, I am sure had I all the answers to life's questions (or my dreams' meanings), life would be boring. Perhaps subsequent dreams tonight and tomorrow night may impart further meanings and messages, but only time will tell.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

The Autumn Effect

Okay, so Best Buy's ad was a tad bit misleading and the free tickets version of Underworld won't be available until Tuesday (so why does the rest of the page have the "AVAILABLE TUESDAY*" notice but this doesn't?), but I did pick up the 10 Years album. That was the best $10 I've spent in a while... I'd even go so far as to say a better deal than two dinners at Panda Express, and that's saying a lot from me. Take a good-sized serving of Chevelle and add in some of Maynard's madness (Tool/A Perfect Circle) and a touch of Trent Reznor (Nine Inch Nails), and you have 10 Years. In fact, track 12 (Paralyzing Kings) starts out sounding a lot like the title track from Tool's album Lateralus and the epic nine-and-a-half minute title track The Autumn Effect wraps the album up nicely with electronic noise rhythms obviously influenced by Nine Inch Nails tracks like A Warm Place off of the classic multi-platinum The Downward Spiral album. I can heartily recommend this album to anyone with similar musical tastes as mine and look forward to hearing more from this band.


Follow these two easy steps while reading this blog entry:
1. Open this link in a new tab/window
2. Enjoy!

I've been hearing this awesome song on the radio for the past few days, but was having trouble figuring out who it was that did the track. My first thought was that it was Incubus doing a remix of one of their previous songs because of some of the melodies. Nope... listen closer next time, not even close.

A few hours later and it's back in rotation on the air. Y'know it reminds me of Chevelle because it rocks. Hard. Nice try, but no donuts for you.

The next day, and it's up again. Must be a popular song, but I haven't listened to the radio for a while since the car died. Hmm, maybe it's by musical genius Maynard? It has an amazingly intricate texture that sounds so simple at first listen, plus the lead vocals sound like it could be... but no.

Finally, I happened across a link this morning. DUDE! It's that awesome song!! The band is a new upcomer called 10 Years. I'm going by Best Buy as soon as I can to pick up the repackaged extended version of Underworld (with a preview disc and free tix to Underworld: Evolution!) and I'm definitely going to look for the album The Autumn Effect as well!

Saturday, January 07, 2006


I just couldn't resist... I've been listening to KUPD all day to try and win their Underworld: Evolution prize pack (t-shirt, album, advance screener passes). I've heard the new single from Nickelback, Animals about two dozen times and I get a good laugh out of it every time. I love the pacing and beat as it matches the *ahem* youthful vigor of the lyrics. I've had a pretty crappy week, but listening to the words to this song combined with the thought of Kate Beckinsale on the big screen again in the sequel to one of my all-time favorite movies just makes me happy again. Women and sex... the universe's gift to men (and the six pack of alcohol putting me to sleep tonight).


The maligned miscreant has returned home. (I've always wanted to use that phrase.) The automated information system I called said the release time was supposed to be about 3:45am, but it took an extra 4 hours. She got a ride from someone and made it back here about 8:30am. I'm just grateful that I didn't have to drive across town with the kids to pick her up in the freezing cold. Yes, it actually gets that cold, but that's because the prison was in Buckeye where there seems to be more farms and open land than buildings to trap the warmth.

Now I have to figure out how to get the car back. I got the new insurance card last night, so hopefully that will be enough to get it released. A trek back downtown to their main office and $139 should do it. Then I'll probably have to drop the rental car off here in our apartment parking lot and ride my bike to the towing yard where my car is being held. Luckily that's only about 20-30 minutes' ride away from here and the Blue Beast should have enough trunk room to stash the bike. Andrea is scared to death to drive and I'd rather not have anyone else driving my car or the rental car just to be safe.

If all goes well, I should finally be able to get in to work and make up some of the hours I missed this week. Onward to the road to recovery...

Friday, January 06, 2006


Ugh, I'm so tired that I'm not even sure where to begin... We finally got the car situation taken care of last Saturday and everything should be better now, right? Wrong. Andrea was pulled over the cops on Thursday afternoon and found out that she had a warrant for not taking care of her last ticket. The new car gets towed to an impound and she is taken downtown where she is fingerprinted, photographed, and held in jail.

Half an hour of investigation online and in the phone book turns up a phone number where I get a neat voice-driven automated information system that tells me she is being held in custody. Wow, I did not know that. =| The officer that arrested her calls me to let me know she is being held until a judge can see her to decide what to do. Then I finally get a call from her in prison, sobbing and scared, and I can give her no more information than she already knows.

Unsure of what to do or who to turn to, I start dialing family from both sides. Normally, her dad can help out with any financial problems that come her way, but since her dad got re-married, he's been flat broke. Grudgingly, I turn to my side of the family and amazingly my grandparents have enough stashed away to help us out (the same grandparents who were deep in debt until declaring bankruptcy two years ago, then received a settlement from a traffic accident).

Everyone in the family is upset with her, each for their own reasons, which isn't quite the reaction I was expecting from her super-religious family members. I'm grumpy because I'm going to miss a day of work because I'm stuck at home with the kids. Among the calls to and from family, I received a few calls from various offices downtown that finally flesh out the remaining parts of the puzzle: an 11pm court appearance that night and $1500 cash bond to release her if she's denied release. If I didn't so desperately need her to take care of the kids while I'm at work, I would agree with other family members and leave her in jail. Yeah, it's cruel but fitting after all the shit she's dropped on me and the kids lately.

12:30am drags it's ugly ass around and I get another call from prison with bad news. The judge denied the release and will keep her until the 13th when she is scheduled to appear in Tempe court for the deliquent ticket, unless her bond can be paid. Weariness overcomes my body and I pass out until the phone rings again at 4am. She has no concept of time behind bars and wanted to find out what was going on. I don't remember what I said, but I don't think it was too polite and I passed out again until 7am when she calls back yet again. Whatever happened to being entitled to *one* phone call in prison? By this time, I'm about ready to ignore the calls but I answer anyway. Same conversation again... "I don't know what to do... I'm scared... tell the kids I love them... bye."

8am and my grandparents head out to the bank to withdraw the money and send $1700 over by Moneygram. Thank the gods for old people waking up at the buttcrack of dawn and doing stuff. I call up Enterprise and reserve a car for today so I can get things taken care of so I can get on with life again. A quick shower later, I feed the kids and get them changed before the rental agent drives up with the car. The last $250 I had from my paycheck gets sucked away and I sit behind the wheel of a quaint little gold '06 Chevy Cobalt (reminds me a lot of the Aveo, but feels like a go-kart compared to the newly-impounded Blue Beast) and the adventure continues.

I managed to get a form to receive the Moneygram transfer, but it took literally seven stops at different stores in the area before finally finding one that could cash out such a large transfer. Apparently, all locations can do up to about $700 at once, except US Bank which could do $900. Slowly the limit was rising, but finally Ace Cash Express said they didn't have any limit. Two and a half aggrivating hours later, I managed to pick up my $1700 transfer. *sigh*

I make a pit stop at home to pick up more drinks for the kids and get Fey out of her wet outfit (she passed out and dripped her water all over herself during the drive). I get the info on the bond payment location and head to downtown Phoenix. After parking on the 6th floor of a nearby parking garage, I learned how slow a pair of 3-year-old feet can really move as the napless one, Kaylee, starts getting tired. After a long two-block trek, we spend an hour waiting to make the payment. The office has the "take a number" dispenser, but nobody pays attention to it because 33 was being helped all the time I was there, despite my number being 48. On the bright side, the clerk said the bond was only $1080, so we have a little bit of extra cash just in case any other fees or charges show up.

The next order of business was locating the new car. Luckily, a call to the Arizona DPS office yielded instant results and I found the yard that the car was towed to. Rushing over there before they closed for the weekend, I was denied because I had no way to prove I was the owner of the car because the insurance card, title, and registration weren't in the glove compartment anymore. A trip to the insurance agency yielded a new insurance card, but it was too late to do any good today. $94 for the tow plus a $20/day extra fee and $25 after-hours processing fee should get the car out tomorrow or Sunday.

So at the moment, we're just waiting for the jail to process her and let her go. Apparently it can take up to 24 hours, so I'm expecting a call at 2am or some other horridly inconvenient time from her again to pick her up.

In total, I spent $1336 today (including food), but I'm not really expecting that she will pay me back. On top of that, I have now missed two days of work and probably won't be able to make it all up this weekend. She has managed to piss off virtually everyone I know in one way or another, too. Why, oh why did I have to go and say those two evil words five years ago: "I do." I am so done with her and wish we could hurry up and get the divorce over and done with. I want a nice and clean apartment again and a car that is only mine again. I don't want her crap littered under my every footstep. I just want some peace and quiet again. I am going to try and get some some well-deserved rest now.

Moral of the story: Sometimes one's own personal feelings must get put aside to do the right thing. And the sooner that thing gets done, the sooner you can rest and get on with life.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Geek syndrome

Something inside of me tells me that I shouldn't be writing this, but yet another something inside of me needs this to be written for my own sake, so here goes.

I was talking this morning with a friend about how the fates never throw useless random events across my lifepath, and that very statement proved itself to me yet again this afternoon. I was doing a Google search for documentation on some controls for programming and happened to come across one page which made an analogy of a certain style of control with someone that had Asperger syndrome. WTF? Trusty old Wikipedia, don't fail me now... Asperger syndrome was found.

Blah blah... "difficulties with social behavior"... me too sometimes... "make very little eye contact"... yeah, I'm guilty of that one, too... "intense and obsessive level of focus on things of interest"... um, anime and programming... "have little patience for things outside these areas of interest"... blah blah, whatever... "having a highly pedantic way of speaking"... likely applicable to writing for us lefties... "Compulsive finger, hand, or arm movements"... like foot tapping or nail biting... "imposition of rigid routines"... got my routines down pat, too... "suffer from varying degrees of sensory overload"... like I do in heavy nighttime traffic or crowded rooms... "There seems to be a strong correlation between those with Asperger syndrome or high-functioning autism (HFA) and the INTP type of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)"... hey, I'm an INTP... holy shit, this is... me.

Autism? Me? That's like, Rain Main, right? Yeah, that's gonna do a lot for my self-esteem. Further investigation into this affliction revealed that many people that have this live fully productive lives and can learn to overcome most of the social problems. In fact, one of the most famous people thought to have Asperger syndrome is everyone's favorite frizzy-haired genius, Albert Einstein. Some even refer to it as "geek syndrome." This would put to rest my fears that I'm going crazy or that I was hit in the head too hard when I was younger. I had just passed off my impulsive obsessiveness with things like TV shows and movies as just mild ADD, but this syndrome now seems more likely.

I feel weird knowing this could be possible. I feel hesitant to check with a doctor about it, on the chance that I may be right. I don't want to be doped up with medications to make me feel more "normal" inside. Then comes the bigger kick to the nuts... it's strongly hereditary... in other words, if I have it then there's good chance I can pass it onto my kids. Not my two sweet little girls! No....

Then I try to think about the other possibility, that I may just be overreacting. With all of the stress lately, it may just be my mind playing tricks on me, despite how well the puzzle piece fits. It reminds me of an episode of X-Files where the message is basically that we sometimes see what we want to see because we look too hard. Maybe I just need something to blame everything on.

Regardless of the actual truth, this was something I needed to put into writing for myself. Perhaps it was the bottom rung of the ladder that has been waiting all of my life for me to climb. Fittingly enough, this comes around the time of the traditional New Year when everyone starts making resolutions, so maybe I need to rethink and reorganize my life. We'll see....

Sunday, January 01, 2006

When is a holiday not a holiday?

How's that for a riddle? Now seriously, whatever happened to the ideal of a relaxing holiday that Hollywood sold us in movies and television? Relaxing in the backyard with a book and lemonade in a hammock... then, of course, the sprinklers would turn on, or any number of other horrible things would happen, especially if the movie starred Chevy Chase. Oh right, the idea of a nice holiday or vacation is a myth... that's what Hollywood sold us.

So why is it that every kid in the neighborhood has to have their three dozen family and friends visiting today, amassing in the parking lot like an army of oversized ants? Why did I get a rude awakening this morning before 8AM by some idiot with an overzealous love for bass cruising through our parking lot? And why does he keep coming by again and again, not causing any problems until he pulls into our parking lot and cranks it up intentionally? And why do I keep getting spam messages from porn sites on MySpace today? (It would be slightly more believeable if it weren't from the same person cut-and-paste multiple times.)

All I want is a nice relaxing day at home, catch up on some anime or television and play with the kids a bit, but it seems that relaxing is going to take some serious work today. Maybe I'm just getting old and grumpy--in fact, I think that when I grow up, I want to become a crotchety old fart and yell at the neighborhood kids for riding their bikes across my lawn. I can dream, can't I?