Category Archives: getting to know me

No RPG this week and other stuff

There is a standing joke that the most difficult part of running an adult RPG group is getting everyone there at the same time a.k.a. scheduling. And we have one member of the group participating in a 3 day Magic the Gathering tournament who just happens to be the GM who’s running things… So no game today. Actually we would be playing this evening because one of the other members has a Sunday morning shift for some reason (he works for a bank?) and another member uses the morning and early afternoon to be with their Significant Other.

This is the game that my character is an AU version of myself, or as close as the game mechanics will let me, because some of the stuff I have done IRL would break the game mechanics. The specific instance I’m referring to is when I got hit with the truck. Now there is the possibility my character could survive that, but the player’s guide puts it outside human limits, not just by a little but a lot given the speed the truck was going when I was hit. I would have to be something with the Body stat of a Dragon but looked like a Human, and I’m not sure that exists in game. Or it could be that I have Natural Armor of some kind in the game. See my backstory page (link at top of this page).

Since we weren’t going to be playing I decided that maybe this would be a good day to go back to church since they don’t start until 1300, but when I got out of bed that idea was quickly vetoed by sharp pains in the bottoms of my feet, as I evidently Did Something my feet didn’t like. I have no idea what that might have been, but I have no doubts I Did It, because the evidence is there. It must have been something I did before I put my shoes on, which means it could have been almost anything. Or it could be just accumulated wear and tear coming back to bite me. See the previous paragraph for an example of “wear and tear” I have accumulated. And speaking of painful feet mine are getting cold and I need to lie down and get my feet under a blanket, so I think I should do that now.7

Where are we going and why am I in this handbasket?

Yep, looks like *45 has placed our collective butts firmly in a Hell-bound handbasket. I don’t like posting politics to this blog, but this is pretty serious. Our *president has committed an act of war without formally declaring war, making us Japan in 1941. Only this time we lack the excuse of not having a typist to type the declaration of war to deliver to the president, like the Japanese ambassador in 1941. Our *president was perfectly capable of sending a Tweet to Iran telling them we are going to start shooting, but he didn’t even do that.

As I posted to twitter the only thing I’m thankful for is none of mine are eligible for the meatgrinder for reasons of age or already in a critical LEO position. The only one close to being in the grinder is my ex-Marine son-in-law, but he’s also the one in a critical LEO position. But still I’m worried about the people who are subject to the meatgrinder.

On other subjects Mrs. the Poet is still waffling about the date for her operation because, I dunno? She’s afraid the operation will leave her like her sister? There is a slight chance it won’t work and will leave her in worse shape than she is now, but TBH there is only one way she’s in worse shape and still alive, because she’s all but bedridden now. Also I’m getting tired of her complaining when there is a paid for option to mostly fix her problems, but it can’t fix everything and every delay means more permanent damage that will last after the recovery from the operation. Kinda like what happened to me except swap “Physical Therapy” for the operation. And “SOOL” for “paid for option”. But she has Medicare which means she has at least some access to getting things fixed. And her waffling about getting her problem fixed when I’ve been living with the pain for years just sets me off, especially when she complains several times a day about her symptoms that will go mostly or completely away after she gets her operation.

Anyway, “Agent Orange” bad, war with Iran bad, people getting killed unnecessarily bad, flushing billions of dollars down yet another Middle East War toilet bad, Mrs. the Poet not getting her back fixed, super bad from my perspective because I don’t know all those other people and I have to listen to Mrs. the Poet complain several times a day.

Merry Christmas!

Because my son-in-law’s relatives are upset that we have monopolized the grandkid the last 6 Christmases we are doing our presents Saturday over pizza, so I don’t know what I’m getting yet. The cats are getting flea treatments because 1) they don’t know that Christmas is any different than any other day, and B) they really need flea treatments.

I take that back, I do know some of what I’m getting because Mrs. the Poet let me open my present last night… in bed.😍

We are having ham for dinner with our son and I guess I’ll get back with you Monday after family presents on Saturday and RPG party on Sunday. Once I know what I got for Christmas, I’ll blog what I got for Christmas.

Being out of sync with the rest of the world is freaky

OK little infodump here but I don’t have what is considered a “normal” circadian rhythm. For some of you this isn’t exactly earth-shattering news, but for some of you knowing I live in the US Central Time Zone is going to be a bit of a surprise if you track my posting schedule. Or lack of schedule because I publish whenever I finish composing a post, no matter what time of day it is. Basically what it looks like is my body is working on a 26 hour day, and if I just do my thing and work and sleep when I feel like it, I lose a day every month or so. But for a good part of my life I’m on Vampire Hours which means I get faster internet because not as many people are using it, and there’s nobody calling me on my phone.

But because I have to interact with the rest of the world on a regular basis, I lose that day more frequently so I can sorta get back in step with the rest of the world. For instance if there is an event coming up that would be during my sleep cycle I stay up as long as needed to get my sleep cycle sometime between midnight and 0800, usually meaning I’m up about 36 hours to get to sleep at midnight. That also means I’m usually going to bed about the same time as Mrs. the Poet gets up until I have to reset. That’s the really bad part about it, because Mrs. the Poet is still not used to Vampire Hours. But anyway, I do the model building and picture taking when the natural light is better, and the writing when the internet is faster. You get the idea.

And it’s about time to reset to “normal” time again, as I went to bed after 0600 the last 2 days, which really bothers Mrs. the Poet which makes her complain I spend “All day in bed!” when it’s the same amount of time asleep she spends in bed. I just don’t like to get out of a nice warm bed and let my feet get cold. So to counter that I have slippers, fuzzy on my Xmas list, right before the swat pants because I have discovered how comfy they are when the thermostat is set for economy over “running naked through the house comfort” in the winter. I think Mrs. the Poet would like “running naked through the house comfort” over low electricity bills except when she sees the electricity bill.

Addendum to this morning’s post

I forgot to mention I’m really starting to notice the effects my cataracts are having on my life, mostly at night. It takes what feels like forever for my night vision to kick in and it’s not as good as it used to be a few years long time ago, when I could wear sunglasses and still navigate by the light of the full moon, or by starlight when I wore regular glasses. Now I have a hard time not tripping over things even with nightlights. I can see the lights and floor, but not things with low contrast on the floor. So I step on things and trip over things that don’t have good contrast with the carpet in the blueish light from the LED nightlights.

And basically that’s all I have to say this afternoon, complaining about getting old and not able to do the things I used to be able to do when I was younger.

Getting out of this gig is tricky

Turns out when you don’t finish a gig with this company it takes more than a couple of e-mails to get untangled from the mess. I told them I would continue to honor the NDA because well I didn’t get enough information to actually disclose anything from the last one and everything I learned from the earlier ones is already public knowledge for anyone who buys their products that I worked on. But that’s not the problem, apparently there was supposed to be some kind of pre-payment made that I never knew about much less received. Everything I got was always after delivery of product. So anywho the company I was doing the gig for says I was supposed to get a pre-payment of half up front, that it seems the company I get gigs through never passed on, and now they want 50% of their pre-pay back as specified in their contract with the company setting up the gigs. Well since I never got the money and all communication went through the company who set up the gigs… you get the point.

To reiterate this last gig had so little usable data for me to work with that it was more a translation than a cleanup, only I can’t even read the language because I don’t have the fonts, even if I was literate in the language. So I’m kicking this back up to the company that sets up these gigs. I don’t know what the procedure for this situation is, but I do know this one Is Not My Fault.

I hate working for clients who use a language I don’t have the fonts for

Short post today. I can’t name the client, but I really wish they would at least tell me where I can download the font for their language, because I’m just really tired of getting documents from their translator that are literally nothing but boxes of Unicode codes that my box doesn’t understand. Seriously this is worse than trying to read the “good” parts of the Mueller Report that have pages upon pages of redaction. I mean I know I can’t read whatever language this is and except for things like “the, this, and, of, that, there, when, above” and “today” neither does their translation program. I’m seriously about this || far from telling them that the money isn’t worth the frustration. Seriously, I can’t work with this company unless they either assign me a bilingual assistant or pay for a better translation program.

At this point I don’t think there is any reasonable amount of money they can pay for me to finish this document, and I refuse to ask for unreasonable amounts of money because I know I don’t have enough information to finish it. The translation is just that bad, or the input is so full of trade names and esoteric BS that the translation program just upchucks a bunch of garbage instead of words. And I can’t tell which it is which is even more disturbing in a way. I’m actually beginning to wonder if this is some kind of psychological test I’m getting paid to take, to see how far I can be pushed before breaking, because TBH some of the other docs I did for this company read more like an acid trip than a user manual after I Romanjied their trade names into something pronounceable. Seriously, whatever language this is has more vowels than Welsh has consonant strings and I really don’t know how well I transliterated their product names. I’m not a linguist, I’m just a cleanup writer trying to make a usable user manual for a product I don’t know what it is or what it’s supposed to do to or for you. Or I could be translating a religious document for a cult, I can’t tell. If someone hands you a tract where the deities’ names are strings of voiced vowels with no consonants you might be reading one of my works.

OK through spouting off about my weird clients and their language that doesn’t translate.

The parts they leave out when you have a real-life superpower

Yes there are real superpowers in this world, yes I have one, and yes there are side effects that aren’t pretty. My “superpower” is extreme durability, the one we are coming up on the 18th anniversary of the event that led to my discovering it. Well, it comes with the side effect of making the person highly susceptible to stone formation, like kidney and gallstones. In my case I literally make rock inside my body as there were calcite crystals forming along the bone scar lines and on the implant that held my leg together, calcite being a mineral mostly made of calcium.

To prevent the formation of kidney stones I need to drink lots of fluids, more than the 8 glasses of water Oprah said to drink. Not a problem most of the time, except that I’m about to be 61 in a month, and I have a bladder of the same age. Or as I put it to Mrs. the Poet, “I stood up, now I have to pee.” I literally can’t get too far from a bathroom, because I have to urinate several times a day, or risk getting huge kidney stones. I pass a few during the year already but they are small and don’t notice unless they make a noise when they hit the side of the toilet. It might also be another aspect of my high pain threshold. I don’t know they are there so I don’t notice any pain. but I do notice having to use the bathroom several times a day and a couple times a night.

And that pretty much covers everything I need to say today except Harley-Davidson is going all the way back to their roots and building power-assist bicycles again, only this time with electric motors instead of gas ICE.

It’s coming up on the least wonderful time of the year

Yeah, that time of year again. I do the Monty Python sketch montage (I’m not dead yet/I got better), drink to the dude who killed me and himself inside a year, drink to the people who didn’t come back from the dead, do a quick check to see if any scars have faded away completely, and a final toast to fuck you immortality without invulnerability.

That’s coming in 9 days, while Mrs. the Poet is back in NY celebrating our niece’s 2nd wedding to the 3rd father of her kids. Nice kid, not a good judge of character, we hope she’s got this one right. Funny thing, of all our extended families between all of the brothers, sisters, and cousins, Mrs. the Poet and I are the only ones still working on a first marriage, and everybody thought ours was the worst marriage because I proposed to the eventual Mrs. the Poet while she was recovering in hospital from delivering our son at home by herself. That’s right I married a true badass woman, because for the third kid she did it again.

But as much as I would like to say that I got up and punched the lights out of the guy who tried to murder me, 1) he wasn’t there to punch, 2) I was blind because of all the flipping and tumbling on all 3 axis I did, and 3) I had one leg that was just barely hanging on and also bleeding profusely and broken in multiple places. So the most badass thing I did that night was to ask if anyone got the number of the truck, because it was too late at night to be a bus. Oh and explaining monkey butt to the EMT who cut off my bike shorts and discovered I wasn’t wearing underwear. That’s badass I guess. Or not having monkey butt is goodass badass. I’m rambling now, sorry.

So anywho, party at Casa de El Poeta 8/31 1800. Chips, dip, and Shiner, RSVP so I know how much dip I need to buy.

I can’t make anything for a while so I have been crawling a webcomic archive

Seriously, I’m creatively blocked for the moment so I figured why not research someone else’s creativity? The webcomic in question is Questionable Content. He has been publishing for over 15 years and more than 4000 comics, so an archive crawl is a prodigious undertaking. I have been at it for a couple of days now and I’m only up to 1995 and the current comic is 4069. Also it’s a good chance to see art and writing evolution in action without cringing through my archives. Seriously, my attempts at viewpoint journalism ranged from awful to terrible, with flashes of brilliance. It was those flashes that both kept me going and eventually made me give it up, along with the nightmares and flashbacks caused by the links I had to read before I put them in the blog. I didn’t write much about it at the time, but after a while doing the blog was a serious impediment to my mental stability. Like depression and flashbacks and PTSD triggers impediment, but I was getting so much positive feedback about how this blog was helping I felt like that I couldn’t quit doing it, until I had to quit doing it. Seriously when you go to a regional planning meeting and your blog is mentioned in the presentation, it’s like a huge “Like” thumbs up ego stroke that you’re doing something right, even though doing the right thing for other people is the wrong thing for you.

Anyway one of the things that has been blocking my creativity is I have to make some of my tools and fixtures, and I have been trying to wrap my head around doing that, specifically how to get the outside-to-outside distance between two bending posts within a few thousandths of an inch tolerance when I can’t even mark the stock for the tool to that tolerance. Sure I can CAD two holes where the holes need to be, but going from a picture on my laptop to holes drilled in a piece of wood with stainless steel bolts screwed into them is another thing entirely. It’s not like I can just put the raw stock into a computer controlled milling machine and get perfectly spaced bending posts like some people can. I found the board sitting on the curb on trash day and the posts are some bolts that happen to be the same size as the tube bending die except in 1/25th scale and cost less than a buck for everything. I’m the cheap guy, not the rich guy. Hold on a second, let me open another tab and check my Lotto numbers, I might be A rich guy (I’ll never be THE rich guy). I mean I always get the annuity so I’ll never be actually rich unless I hit one of those billion dollar jackpots that have annual payments larger than the jackpot for the Texas Lotto.

OK I’m back and I’m not rich, I basically had a draw. There is a thing with the Texas Lotto called Extra that gets you more money if you don’t win the jackpot, and because I spent the money for Extra I essentially got a Free Play or a “push”. I got my money back and that’s it. So I will use the money to buy another Lotto ticket for Saturday’s drawing, because “You can’t win if you don’t play.” And at this point I won’t be financially secure if I don’t win. I’m OK right now, it’s not like we are looking at living off beans and rice until we die, but if we get another bout of inflation like we got back in Nixon’s first term, even with social security things are looking grim around Casa de El Poeta.

Just dropping this in because it was brought up in a QC comic, but I’m 1,921,741,954 seconds old as of the composing of this post. Almost 2 trillion seconds, wow. And that seems like a pretty good place to end this.