Thursday, January 31, 2008


Tomorrow is Hourly Comic Day. Last year I did it and I'm pretty sure I'll be doing it this year, too. Not sure if I'll be make four panels per hour or the more common two. I guess we'll see.

There are two houses, on the block where I live, that have been for sale since Christmas. Yesterday, on my way to the apartment, I walked by them and grabbed one of the fliers that the realtors (There are two of them, but for some reason the fucking spell check keeps insisting I write "realtor's." Stupid spell checker.) posted to see what's going on. Well, they're each listed for $429,000. Sure they've been refurbished, but they're not very big and only sort of have a yard. Besides, it's not like I'm going to buy a house here, I really don't want to live here for a long chunk of my life, I'm just tired of paying rent. I'd feel better if the money I spend each month went toward making something mine rather than paying people for the privilege of living in a building that they own. While I probably wouldn't feel great paying a mortgage and insurance each month and proper taxes each year, I think I'd like that better than rent.

South Park is what's been on my TV a lot in the past two weeks. I bought the seasons I was missing, so I went back and started it from the first so I could see everything, including the movie.

Should have mentioned this earlier, but a couple of weeks ago, a friend sent me a bootleg copy of the first three episodes of Pushing Daisies. That show is great. I really liked the first episode, but when it got to the point in the second episode where Olive sings to herself, and sort of to Digby, "Hopelessly Devoted" and keeps getting interrupted by people and then singing again, I knew it was a show created for me, or at least people like me. I also liked, from the second episode, when Jim Dale, the narrator, says that "when the scientist got home he remembered the girl's sweater a little tighter and her hair a more vibrant shade of red, but the smile he got just right" (I'm paraphrasing here. I couldn't find the actual quote online, so here's hoping I remember it correctly.) I go all squishy inside. Yeah, the show's a keeper and since I didn't get to start watching it from the beginning, like I did with Wonderfalls, it'll probably get picked up for a second season, if it hasn't already.

In other news, lots of Eustace Tilleys. The ones that I like include:
Dorian Gray
News Print
Heavy Metal (At least it makes me think of something that may have come out of Heavy Metal magazine, back in the day, probably really before my day, even.)

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Scattered Pictures

I've found it hard to concentrate on reading. I think I've only read four books (including this and this, which aren't very hard, but are entirely interesting and fun, and she owns a Sphynx) since Christmas. Maybe it's just long narratives. I haven't had problems with a comic or two before I go to sleep.

Went and watched Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street last night. It was the second time. Yes, I know the play's better, but I liked the movie, a lot. The songs are great and the actors are marvelous and the blood flows and squirts and sprays and I enjoy every minute of it. Sure, I'm sad that Turpin's turn at singing "Johanna" wasn't included, but it wasn't enough to make me not enjoy the movie. One other thing, Helena Bonham Carter has appeared in every Burton movie since the horror that was Planet of the Apes, I'd like to say that it has something to do with the fact that they have two kids, but it's hard to confirm that because she's such a spectacular actor.

At break time I've been staying at my desk. Sometimes I do work. Sometimes I screw around on the 'net. Sometimes I stare into the corner just trying not to think.

There's stew thawing in my fridge. It's probably not very thawed, yet, and I don't want to put a block of ice in the microwave, I'd rather wait until it's mostly thawed. I made the stew more than a week ago; I made a lot of stew thinking that my brother was going to be sleeping at my place, he didn't. There are two or three more things of it in the freezer. I'll probably thaw them out next month.

Work keeps building stupid upon stupid. First we stated the bullshit "prepping" of the files at the beginning of the month. Last week, we started "prepping" the DEU files and learned that they "prepping" is based on date, so any DEU rating that was done after September 1st of last year is supposed to be "prepped" for scanning (We still haven't seen the scanners and no one, in our office at least, has been shown how they work. Hell, we were told that there wouldn't even be a monitor for the scanners, so we can't see what we're doing.), even if the rating is in a file that won't be scanned. Last Friday, a guy came in to look around an tell us how we're not up to the proper ADA standards, so some chairs and a table have been removed and we all now have to police the lawyer to make sure they don't block the door or the place where a wheelchair may be at some point in the future and people are not longer allowed to work outside the door, to keep the noise down out there. We're already having problems with this stuff, but it won't be addressed because we're moving downstairs in a few months where there will be a whole new set of problems that won't be addressed because we're only staying there for a few months because the remodel will be done and we'll be back up here with a whole new set of problems that we'll have to work out to go along with the problems that aren't being addressed now.

I've been walking at lunch, when it hasn't been raining. I just go around the corner, past the post office, and stay on that sidewalk, by a hospital, for a half hour before turning on the next block and the next, which bring me right back to the road this building is on. It's not an exciting or interesting walk, but it's not about being exciting or interesting, it's about getting away from the place I work physically since I haven't been able to do it mentally on my lunch hour. myPod plays random music on the walk and I try to focus on that.

In nine days I'm going to Cowtown for a long weekend. Hopefully my car won't break so I can actually have good time rather than being Mr. Grump the whole time.

So very, very tired...

Monday, January 28, 2008

First Album

1 - Go to
The first random Wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.

2 - Go to Random quotations:
The last four words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your first album.

3 - Go to flickr's "explore the last seven days"
Third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.

Put it all together, that's your first album.

The picture came from here.

I actually found this meme on Friday over here, but I don't have any good software or fonts at work so I did it at my apartment over the weekend to get it right.

Edit: Heels did one on Friday, but she has good software at work.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Fiction Friday #27

"Ewww," I said.

"That's disgusting," Karen said through the door.

"She's right," I said, nodding toward her voice.

"Stay out of this, Karen," Said Jer. "Unless you're going to let him in to use the toilette."

She snorted, "He's not coming in here."

"Then keep out of this," he said. He turned to me, I couldn't see his face clearly in the dark of the hall, and said, "Go and use the sink in the kitchen."

"Man, we put dishes in there," I said, giving the door a little push to see if I could catch Karen off guard. The door didn't move.

"It's all pipes, man. Haven't you ever peed in the shower?"

"That's different," I said. The shower washes everything down it."

"We wash dishes in there."

I scoffed, "We?"

"You. Fine," he said.

"That's right."

"I'll do dishes later. And make sure to clean out the sink, okay?"

"Fine," I said, taking my weight off of the door so it could slam shut with a surprised Karen on the other side.

"Son of a bitch," she said.

I smiled and let go of the door knob. "How do I get up high enough to aim for the sink?" I asked Jer. "I don't want to get the counter or anything."

He sighed, "You get a chair. And if you don't like that idea you grab one of the dirty glasses or a bowl or a pot or something. Jesus, just go."

He gave me a little push and I left. As I walked down the hall toward the living room, I heard a tapping. I turned and saw him knocking on the door, probably talking to Karen, trying to settle her down, telling her that I was the one who was wrong. He was on her side, I just knew it. He was telling her that everything was my fault, that I should have been more sensitive to her needs rather than my over stuffed bladder.

I hated Jer the entire time I pissed in the pot he boiled pasta in the night before, which I promised myself I'd never use again. At least Karen had an excuse for acting the way she had; she was a bitch. She couldn't help being the person she was. Jer, on the other hand, had been my friend since we were both freshmen trapped in rooms with shithead roommates. Jer's thought it was his right to kick Jer out at two in the morning so he could have sex. Mine was a freak who had night terrors. We had been united in our misery and turned it into a long friendship. The best friendship I'd ever had. The best he'd had, too.

I finished up in the pot and though about "accidentally" spilling some on the counter so he'd be stuck with the smell while he cleaned up. I thought better of that idea, though, because I knew I'd be smelling it all day long because if, and that was quite an if, Jer did the dishes he wasn't going to get to them until much later in the day. I poured my piss carefully into the sink then took the spray thing and rinsed the sink the best I could and did the same to the pot I used, which I then filled with hot water and added some soap so it could have a nice, long soak.

Jer came around the corner into the kitchen as I finished up. He wore slacks, a white button shirt and had a tie hanging loosely around his neck. He sat on one of the chairs around the table to put on his shoes.

"Leo," he said, setting one shoe on the table, "what you did this morning really sucked."

"It wasn't my fault," I said, sounding more whiney than I wanted.

"I know," he said, "but it wasn't all her fault."

"It was, too." I crossed my arms and leaned against the wall.

"No, it wasn't." He finished tying the first shoe and picked the other up off the table and pointed it at me. "You didn't have to be such an asshole. You could have waited. You could have figured out the sink thing for yourself."

"Yeah, but--"

"I'm not saying that she was right." He finished the second shoe and stood up to tie his tie. "She could have let you in and waited a minute for you to go and be done with it. Hell, she should have. You didn't have to turn it into some third grade yelling match at six on a Sunday morning. You should have been the mature one and waited."

I stood there, my mouth opening and closing like a landed trout and thought, bros before hoes, man, bros before hoes. Jer didn't see me, though. He was having trouble with his tie.

"I'm going with Karen to church," he said, looping the tail around and around the rest of the tie. "After, we're going to breakfast. She might come back with me after. I don't know."

"Give it to me," I said. He handed it over and I put it around my neck. "How long do you want it?"

He showed me and I started tying.

"You guys can't go around ignoring each other," he said. "It just screws everything up, makes it worse. I'd rather you guys have lots of little arguments than blow up early in the morning once a month."

I finished up, yanked the tie over my head, and handed it to him.

"Thanks," he said.

"Yeah," I said and headed around the corner. The bathroom door was still closed.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

It's 4:15 in the PM...

...and all day I've been reminding myself that I choose to be here.

It doesn't make me feel better. It just reminds me why I work at a horribly boring job that doesn't require much brain power to do with people I would never choose to spend time with in the "real" world and a supervisor who is in a stupid hat that makes me thinK of Six from Blossom even though though it was probably Blossom herself who actually wore the hats, but I alway preferred Six, and who doesn't seem to understand that those who are, pardon the cliché, self motivated don't need the same sort of supervision as those who aren't.

Yet, I still force myself to remember that I choose to be here.


Friday, January 18, 2008

Fiction Friday #26

After that, there was hardly a day that I didn't see Karen. At first, we were... pleasant to each other, pleasant in only the way two people who won't speak can be. I acknowledged her existence, but wouldn't talk. I'd go around her in the kitchen to grab a plate or a glass rather than ask her to hand me one. If I saw her in the hall, I'd duck into my room or the bathroom until she was safely in Jer's room. She'd do the same, carefully dodging me so we wouldn't have to speak.

The pleasantness disintegrated early one Sunday morning, about six weeks after the first night. I had to pee, but she was in the bathroom. I had to go, really go. I drank an entire ultra-huge Slurpee before I went to bed and I'd held off as long as possible. I tapped on the door. (To this day I swear I was gentle, but when Karen tells the story it's like I swung a sledgehammer and tried to break the door down.)

She hollered through the door, "I getting ready for church."

"Why?" I asked, trying to stay polite. I still had to pee, but bothering her seemed more important. "You never believed in that bullshit before. What changed?"

"Fuck you, Leo," she said.

"How much longer?" I asked.

"As long as it takes."

"I'm not just gonna stand here and piss myself, you know."

"Yeah, what are you gonna do?"

I twisted the knob and gave the door a little push. She slammed into it, forcing the door shut. She couldn't lock it, though; I still had the knob turned. I pushed back.

"Let me in," I yelled, holding the knob with both hands, "I have to pee."

"Wait until I'm through," she yelled back.

"Who knows how long you'll be. I'll only be a minute."

"Yeah, and then the whole place will smell like piss."

"Fuck you!" I shouted.

"You had your chance, but your gun went off before you even got a look at the target!"

I nearly pissed myself at that. My ears got hot and I wanted to kick the door down, push her into the tub, and use the goddamn toilette. I didn't, though. I kept my hands firmly on the door knob and started taking deep breaths. I counted them. At fifteen I felt calm enough to speak again.

"Karen," I said, "please let me in so I can use the bathroom."


"Please? I've been waited a long time before I knocked on the door."




I pushed, the door opened a crack. She pushed back, the crack started to close. I pushed again and the crack sort of wavered. Nothing was gained and nothing was lost when she started to push back again.



"WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON?" asked Jer from behind me.

"She's hogging the bathroom," I said, pushing.

"He's a shithead who won't leave me alone," she said, pushing back.

"I have to pee," I said pushing again.

"Tell him he'll get the bathroom when I'm done," she said, pushing back again.

"Leo, if you break that door, you're paying for it," Jer said.

"HA!" we heard Karen say through the door.

"You're paying for it, too, Karen," he said.

"HA! HA!" I said.

"Leo, can't you use the sink in the kitchen?" he asked.

Thursday, January 17, 2008


I'm going to see that movie Cloverfield tomorrow or Saturday.

Sure, I'm curious about this monster thing, but that's not the main reason I'm going.

I'm really going to watch the Star Trek teaser.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Advice My Grandpa Gave Me Before I Turned 10

"Learn to enjoy drinking warm beer, that way other people won't drink as much of your beer."

How to Rationalize Like a Comic Book Fan

Or What the Hell Happened to Captain Atom?

Why did Captain Atom decide to take over the multiverse?

What led him down the path from superhero to super villain?

Who corrupted him?

When did the turn happen?

Where was point of no return from good to evil?

How did it all happen?

I've been asking myself these questions since before the beginning of Countdown. I knew from the solicits that he'd be turning bad. I knew that he was going to raise an army out of the 52 universes which he'd use to take over the entire multiverse. And so I've wondered, why?

Captain Atom, in the DC universe at least, started out as a man, Captain Nathanial Adam, out of time. He was a military man in the sixties who had some problems and got to decide to spend years in prison or be stuffed into an egg made out of some alien alloy while bombs were exploded outside the egg to test the alloy's strength. While I would pick prison, he picked the alien egg. The bombs exploded and everything disappeared. Years later Adam re-appeared with the alloy grafted to his skin and the ability to tap into and manipulate the Quantum Field. (Don't think about the science, please. You'll only hurt yourself.) Obviously, the military wanted to use him to get good press, so he did and eventually became a real hero, not just a military shill, and eventually led the European team of the Justice League International.

Captain Atom fought Monarch (a former hero who went bad when his future self came back in time and killed his partner, who he was in love with, which sent his present day self into wacoville and caused him to kill his future self and then put on his future self's armor and go to kill all the superheroes) and they went on a wacky trip through time, with only Atom ending up back in the present. From there, after some (a lot) of time in the background, he formed an "extreme" Justice League team, fought "extreme" Wonder Twins, and even an "extreme" quantum clone of himself. Then he spent more time off the page until he sacrificed himself by flying a giant robot in the shape of the Composite Superman into a gigantic meteor made up of kryptonite. He blew up, saving the day, and dying.

Except he didn't die, he was blow into another universe. The Wildstorm comics universe. There he found an Earth full of superheroes who scared the regular people as much as, but often more than, the super villains and alien invaders who are waging war on the backwater world known as Earth. Atom gets frustrated and almost becomes as frightening as the heroes of the Wildstorm Earth, but he doesn't. He clings to his ideals and morals. He refuses to kill. He tries to convince regular folks he won't hurt them. He helps a young woman come to terms with the god-like powers she received because of the way he broke through the universal barriers. He does good and in the end he's sent back to DC's New Earth to a city that was blown up by a giant creature full of bizarre chemicals being dropped on the city, cracked and leaking radiation, which forces him into a coma.

Eventually, he's discovered being used to help breed government meta-humans, still in a coma and leaking massive amounts of radiation, by heroes called the Atomic Knights. They take him away and to keep him from going critical and blowing up the city even worse, the put him in Monarch's armor and wake him up. He's kind of angry when he wakes up and sort of blows up what's left of the destroyed city and anyone or anything left there.

After that, he's seen in Countdown recruiting alternate heroes and villains and already having a large army of normal people hidden in the bleed. He's decided to force his brand of order on the 52 universes.

I thought that Countdown would have explained this change in him by now. It hasn't.

In Countdown to Final Crisis #17 they claim to give Monarch origin in the back-up. I expected them to explain the change in Atom there. Here's what they said:
To prevent further catastrophe caused by the quantum energies seeping from Captain Aton's Damaged skin, the Atomic Knights sealed him within the recovered armor of Monarch.
His abilities enhanced but his control overwhelmed, Captain Aton became the very thing he feared and fought on that alternate Earth.
He Repaid the Knights' kindness by destroying what little remained of Blüdhaven before embracing his future as the one true Monarch...
The origin didn't explain anything, but it did remind me of the story of the armor. So I pulled out the books where it was introduced the event that crossed the annuals put out in 1991, Armageddon 2001.

Monarch's armor was built sometime in the future and had the ability to absorb nearly infinite amounts of energy, but it came back in time where the original owner was killed by his past self. His past self was a superhero named Hawk, an agent of the Lords of Chaos, who was part of a team built to balance Order and Chaos with Dove, an agent of the Lords of Order. Dove was killed by Monarch. Without her to help balance him, Hawk got mad, embraced the chaos and killed his future self. Angry and nutso, Hawk became Monarch and decided to kill all the superheroes and impose order, which is a stupid thing to do for an agent of Chaos. Of course, he was defeated (by Captain Atom, the man who was originally going to be Monarch, but didn't, due to the story leaking to the comic "press" of the day, BBSes).

A few years, our time, later, Monarch showed up again and declared that he now understood: without Dove, he was also the embodiment of Order and his power was increased and called himself Extant, a guy with an omega on his chest because, you know, he's come to end it all, and he ditches the armor.

And there, there's my answer:

To absorb the power from the Lords of Order, Monarch had to give up some of the power from the Lords of Chaos. He couldn't keep all of one and just take more of the other into his body, so what happened to the Chaos power? It was absorbed by the armor! So when Captain Atom, a hero of science, was crammed into the armor, the Chaos was too strong for him, especially since the Lords have left (or were killed or stomped by the Spectre or punched out of existence) the Chaos trapped in the armor is all there is in the universe. It just overwhelmed Captain Atom and drove him as mad as, or madder than, Hawk was when Hawk watched his future self kill Dove and then killed his future self. Hawk was created to hold and use the powers of Chaos, Captain Atom was not.

When I figured that out, I felt better, even if it's complete and utter horse shit. Still won't stop me from asking about it at WonderCon in February, though.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Fiction Friday #25

"When?" he asked.

"High school," I said.

Jer looked over at Karen. She nodded again.

"High school?" he said to himself. Then he spoke to me, "Does that mean she's..." He let it drift off.

I pushed my hair off my forehead and said, "Yeah. This is her. This is Karen."

"Oh," he said, looking at her again, this time not so cow-eyed.

"What," she said to me, "have you told him?"

"The truth," I said, leveling my eyes to hers.

"'The truth,'" she said, mocking me by making her voice higher. "You wouldn't know the truth if it crawled out of your belly button and said, 'Fuck me, I'm the truth!'"

"Yeah, sure," I said and turned to walk to my room. I wanted to let them handle whatever was going on between them.

Jer grabbed my arm, "Where're you going?"

"To my room. I don't have to deal with this." I shook his hand off of me.

Karen leaned her butt onto the back of the chair she had been sitting on and let out a long sigh. "What now?" she asked.

Jer sat on the floor, looked at me, then at her. He shrugged and looked down at his arms, which were crossed on his chest. I wondered if he was about to cry.

"What, 'What now?'" I asked Karen. "I don't get it."

"You," she pointed to me. "Him," she pointed to Jer. "Me," she pointed to herself.

"Fuck me," I said.

She grinned an evil grin at me, "Only with a chainsaw."

"Look," I said, ignoring her as best I could, "this doesn't have anything to do with me. Jer," -- He looked up at me, tears in his eyes. -- "we were bullshitting, bitching about exes. We were playing, one upping each other. How'd I know three years later you'd see her and bring her home with you?"

He looked away from me.

"And you," I turned back to Karen, "give him a fucking chance. He's not me." I paused. She didn't say anything; she just frowned. "Hell, I'm not who I was. I'm a totally new kind of jackass."

Karen smiled a little.

That's when I left. I didn't go to my room. I walked back the way I came in and out. I hurried down the stairs after I pulled the door shut and hopped on the first bus that came around the corner. It didn't matter where I was going, just as long as I was gone.

Nearly four years after we spent hours screaming at each other, almost four since I'd even seen her, and when I saw her all those old emotions came back. All the pain I felt because of what she said and because of what I wanted to do. As if no time had passed at all. If I'd stayed, I would have started again. Maybe she would have been mature enough to not fight back, but I doubted it. She always had a quicker temper than I did, than most people did. Her temper was one of the things that made her so much fun to be around; it made her more unpredictable and exciting.

So, we probably would have fought. This time in front of an audience, Jer. He didn't need to see that anymore than I needed to go through it. Besides, he'd been building her up for so long, it would have been awful to just show him her worst side. Besides, I knew, deep down, that she wasn't the horrible bitch I'd made her out to be. I didn't know who she was at all anymore.

She was, though, even more beautiful than she had been in high school. She was rounder, fuller, still dark and glistening. When she smiled when we were kids, it dazzled me, now it would probably knock me unconscious. I could see how she caught his eye. Couple her looks with the deadly sharp wit she's always had, and Jer had no chance.

I rode the bus for long enough to lose track of time. I thought about what had happened at my apartment. I thought about what happened between me and Karen then and now. I thought about who I was now compared to then. It all just rolled around and around in my head always looping back on itself.

Eventually, I wanted off. I didn't want to go back home, but I knew I couldn't sit on the bus all night long, it's run had to come to an end some time. A bar seemed like the right place to go for the night. Who wouldn't want to get drunk after seeing someone like Karen again? Bars have to close sometime. They may stay open late, but late wasn't all night long. Denny's, though, stayed open all night long.

I transferred twice to get onto the line to Denny’s; I wouldn't have had to transfer at all if I went to a bar. Still, Denny's was a better place. I hadn't dropped off my backpack, so I still had all the books I'd taken to school. Unfortunately, they weren't the books for the next day's classes; still it was something else to focus on.

I bought a never ending coffee and slowly, through the night, bought food and worked my way through a few weeks worth of homework. I left around five so I could get to the first bus of the morning. Once again I transferred twice and, in time, ended up across the street in front of my apartment.

I stood there wondering if I really wanted to go in. Did I want to know what Jer and Karen had decided? Which outcome would make me happiest? I knew what would make my life easiest, at least after Jer settled down to his normal routine.

I stood there wondering and the door opened and Karen came down the stairs. I don't think she saw me, but if she had, she would have seen me clutching my stomach, as if I'd just been punched.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Fiction Friday #24

The first time it was real weird between Karen and me was when we sort of met in college.

Jer, my then roommate and best friend who I met my first year, his second, of college, was all excited when he got home the first day of the new semester. The only thing he talked about all night was some brilliant, dark eyed, dark haired, mahogany skinned beauty he'd met in his American lit class. Unlike most students, she was already asking the professor tough questions. She asked questions about the syllabus, pressing the prof for specifics instead of putting up with his vague outline of exactly what the required reading for the course was; who in their right mind wanted to buy a copy of Moby-Dick only to have to read select passages so they could compare and contrast those passages with a short story, "Bartleby, the Schr1vner," from the class reader.

For five weeks, each day he had that class, he came home talking about her. She said this about the story we read today. She busted the teacher when he mixed up something Emerson wrote with something Thoreau wrote. She flicks her hair back with a quick motion of her head. She makes the air around her smell like vanilla. Of course, in all that time, he never spoke to her. He just listened and pined.

Then they read Huck Finn, a book that Jer had hated since he was in junior high because of the ending. All the time he was reading it at home he bitched about the book to me, but he read it from beginning to end anyway. On the day the class talked about the ending, the prof talked about how it was a brilliant portrayal of how the reconstruction of the South failed after the Civil War and how Twain was pulling the book back from the serious place it had reached to the comedy it began with to show how the USA achieved no change at all after Reconstruction had ended. Jer, in his mild way, flipped out at the teacher and said that the ending sucked. Out of the whole class the only the Dark Girl, as we'd come to call her around our apartment, sided with Jer, the rest either rehashed what the prof said or sat silent.

After that class, and pretty much being called dumb by the prof, full of rage and adrenaline, Jer and the Dark Girl finally spoke. She even came home with them so they could keep talking. When I got there, I heard the muffled voices and didn't want to get in the way so I tried to sneak off to my room. It didn't work. The voices had stopped and Jer was in the entry way before I could lock up.

"Guess who I have here?" Jer asked, smiling.

"Jesus, the guy who sells stolen hubcaps," I said.

"No," he said. "She's here."


"The girl from my lit class."

"Her?" I paused. "How?"

"Come and meet her." He pulled my arm so I was in front of him and then pushed me into the living room.

She was sitting in a chair so her back was to me. Her hair was impossibly black, Jer was right about that.

"I want you two to meet."

She stood up, turned around, the smile she had turned to a look of horror.

"This is Karen," Jer said to me. "Karen, this is--"

"Leo," she said with disgust.

"Shit," I said my heart trying to fall into my scrotum while my balls tried to climb up to my throat.

Karen had dated in high school during our junior year and most of our senior year, then stupid happened. I wouldn't lie to her, but she didn't want the truth about certain thing (even though she'd ask about them). So I told her something that hurt her and she said something that hurt me and it went back and forth and back and forth for a while until she was crying to hard she couldn't talk anymore and I was so angry that I wanted to throw her through a window and started to cry at that thought. Soon after, I couldn't remember who started what or even when, but I was tired of her and she was tired of me and things just ended. From then on, we just didn't speak. Our friends sort of ignored us for a while and then she seemed to recover faster and started to be fun Karen before I became fun Leo, so they drifted off toward her more than to me. Not that I blamed them, she always was more fun than I was.

She was also the first person who I almost had sex with, but didn't quite make it. She was the first girl, besides family or medical people, to see me naked. She was the first girl who was naked with me. We must have looked odd, her in her beautiful, deep brown skin gleaming in the light, and me standing there in my earthworm colored flesh, blotchy with red as my body flushed. She was the first who really let me explore her body and she was the first who explored mine. But when she stroked me as I was kissing and touching her and I burst in her hand, the experiment was over. After that, we fooled around and worked on each other until we came, but we never got that close to actual sex again.

Before we broke up, we had both chosen to go to the same college, thinking we'd be in love forever. Afterward, I know I seriously thought about not going to school at all, but I figured the odds of me running into her on a campus with twenty thousand people seemed low, so I wasn't going to stop my plans because of her. I never saw her until there, until the day my roommate invited her over to our apartment, where she just glared at me.

As she looked me over, with a deep frown on her face, she was probably remembering every horrible thing I had ever said to her or done to her and trying to figure out if anyone who was a friend of mine was worth anything at all.

"You know each other?" Jer asked, looking between us.

"We went to high school together," I said, trying to look like I wasn't looking at Karen.

She frowned deeper.

"And we sort of dated. For a while," I said.

"Is that true?" he asked her.

She nodded.

"Shit," he said.

A Softer World

If you don't read A Softer World once a week, what the hell is wrong with you?


Tuesday, January 08, 2008

There Was No Party on Saturday

Feels like a long time since I've blogged, but I put something up on Friday and I actually wrote a few paragraphs on Thursday. So, it hasn't even been a week. Feels it, though.

I'm really extra sick of my job.

I think I've written about how at the end of each month I box up files that were ordered from storage and then ship them back to the record's center. I didn't do it at the end of December because of my back. I want to let it get a long rest before I start lugging boxes full of files around again. I talked to SMSN about it and she said she'd take care of it. Yesterday, AOAC came up to me and asked about the files and I said she should go ask SMSN about them and she, AOAC, told me that it didn't matter, she'd work around the files.

I rolled my eyes and didn't do a thing about it.

Why? Well, it's not my responsibility and I'm tired of doing extra things that aren't my responsibility.

I know that's not the way to get "ahead," but where I work, me doing extra stuff is taken for granted and not appreciated. Hell, I was responsible enough to tell SMSN weeks in advance that she'd have to find someone else to send the files off. Weeks! I guess she didn't take care of it since it hasn't been done. I bet that once she hears about it, she'll be surprised that I didn't remind her that she said she had it taken care of even though she didn't. I am expected to let her know things like this, no one else is.

That post I wrote last Thursday about responsibility, yeah it had to do with her and the other people who are supposed to be in charge not doing their job, but me doing their job.

See, late in November some guys came to do some wiring through the floor. Shelves had to be moved. Most were empty and we were going to be moving to a different office in December, so it was a good start to that. Well, the wiring didn't get done that day and the move didn't happen, but the shelves were never put back. We didn't have much room back in November for new files on the few shelves left, by the end of December, the last few shelves were filled to bursting. Last Thursday, I got sick of it, so I readjusted where the files were and told SMSN that we need the other shelves back since we're now not moving until sometime between March and August. (That's as specific as they can get.) She wanted me to take care of it. She wanted me to get the shelves and put them back. She wanted me to put everything back just the way it was before. I wanted to throw her out a window.

On top of that, we're doing this pointless preparation to our files for scanning on scanners that they won't let us see into a computer program that isn't finished being created yet. And everyone comes to me for advice. I was given the same bullshit instructions that they were. I attended the same bullshit meetings that they did. I heard the same bullshit answers they heard. I received no training like they did and they come to me for answers that if they don't have I don't have. And then one of the judges decided to tell all the attorneys he saw yesterday that if they have any questions about what they can do to help that they should speak with me. With! Me!

The only think that I know for certain is that the fucking purple paper goes on top of the prepped work! That's not fucking much!

The thing that bothers me the most is that when I tell people that I don't know, that I don't have an answer for them, they hover over my desk with a little smile, like they thing I'm shitting them! If I knew, I'd tell you!

Friday, January 04, 2008

GL Test

Like the lady said, it was bound to happen.

Which Power Ring would come to you?

You are an exemplar of hope.You have a place in the Blue Lantern Corps. We exist to fill the universe with hope against the dark times ahead. The universe needs you.
Take this quiz!

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That's the ring I would have chosen, if it hadn't chosen me.

Thursday, January 03, 2008


I don't want to be the fucking adult. I don't want to be the one who's responsible for the bullshit of other people.

It's one of the reasons I don't want to be a parent.

It's the main reason I don't want to be a supervisor over more than two or three people. Ever. I don't want to constantly nag the shit-heads who don't do their work to get it done, but since my job performance is dependent on theirs, I'd have to because I don't want to look like a shit-head because of some other asshole.

All I want to be is responsible for myself and my tiny, insignificant place in this universe. If I fuck up, then it's me who gets fucked up the worst. My fuck-ups may effect other people, but not so badly that they can't recover and move on with their part.

I hate depending on others to get their shit together so that I can move on. I hate it!