A Twist Of Fate
May, 2010 Entries
"Even Napoleon had his Watergate." - Yogi Berra

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(05/30/10 - 9:01 AM)
Saw a series of garage sale signs yesterday that made me laugh out loud. They read: "Crap you might need - 6 families ---->"

I finished Robert V.S. Redick's second novel (of a trilogy), "The Rats & The Ruling Sea". While an amazing read, in and of itself, it feels much like Tolkien's "The Two Towers": It's a bridge between two books that is somewhat slow at times, but mostly necessary to tell the whole story.

It must be painfully difficult to write the middle book in a trilogy, as all the intrigue (for the most part) has been laid out already, but you also know your readers aren't going to be experiencing all the big revelations until the next book.

On the whole, another solid entry in what promises to be a trilogy that takes its rightful place amongst fantasy's finest authors.

Wanda and I also finished the Claymore anime series. It left a TON of questions unanswered (hopefully they were answered in the Manga print story arc), but held our interest nonetheless. It almost seems like you have to re-tool your mind for Japanese anime prior to watching, as it is really (storyline-wise) like nothing else I can compare it to in American television.

On the whole, not a series I'd watch again, but a decent distraction.

(05/29/10 - 6:23 PM)
Spent the morning giving the shrubs their first Johnny Unitas, Military-grade haircut that even Grandpa Simpson would approve of. The forsythia in front took a beating with snow this winter, so I had to lop off a goodly amount of its left side. The upside is that it's square again, and it will, no doubt, soon be full to bursting once more.

Then Wanda and I went shopping for a few odds and ends and had an early lunch at Chili's where she and I both strayed from our normal orders. I, for the first time in I don't know how many years, was in the mood for a burger. So, after some five years of abstaining (with the exception of Zach's cookouts), I ate a cheeseburger. And it was good, but not as good as I had hoped it might be. I guess I'm not missing too much.

We also picked up some new plants to replace the one that died of mysterious, unknown causes and the other that the cat has become quite fond of masticating of late. It added a nice little touch to the downstairs living room once more, and while I'll miss the old ones, I have high hopes for the new ones.

We also bought a new flowering plant, and a flowering shrub for the hill for wayard plants. This is one of the first times that we've actually bought something to put up there, but I need to fill it in faster than nature - or my friends looking to ditch plants - seems to be able. So, I figured we'd help the pace be pushed a little.

We also stopped out and visited her parents, as they had some excess plants to dispose of. We picked up a dozen or so snapdragons (color unknown) as well as a few tomato plants and some pepper plants.

Our little deck garden is now open for business again.

I ended up taking three showers, as each time I went outside, the smell was epic in almost no time at all. The cat also got his first foray into the out of doors today, and seemed quite content to eat grass, vomit, and lay on the concrete and the deck in the shade. At least I'm certain that he enjoyed himself.

Spending the evening playing Lego Star Wars with Wanda again, and I think that we had both forgotten what an amusing distraction that game can be. Although, I will say that the original series levels are a bit tougher than the subsequent prequel levels. Especially the one with the AT-AT & AT-ST walkers. So much profanity!

(05/28/10 - 7:23 PM)
I had a component come out of the mill department today at work. I checked it, and it was all good. It was now ready to go to the final stage of manufacturing: flat grinding.

Because the operator who did the milling also knows how to grind, I elected to just give it right back to him to finish up. I asked him to do so on the following morning, and he said no problem.

Then, Mr. Phillips Screwdriver came in for second-shift. He runs the machine that said operator runs on days, but at night. Not only was the component not within his realm to be trifled with, but our Expediting Manager, knowing full well the affectations of Mr. P.S. specifically pointed it out and said, "Please don't mess with that."

Seems simple enough. Well, to me anyway. For you see, not thirty minutes later did I find the component in my inspection area once more. Only this time, it had a note on it. The note read:

"Straighten before grinding. Not flat."

Hmmmm... So, for giggles, I re-checked the flatness - maybe I had missed something. And it was, in fact, not perfectly flat (which I already knew).

But here's the thing: I hadn't worried about it in the first place, because when grinding, the grinder has a magnetic plate that "grabs" the component(s) sucking it/them down with an amount of force commensurate with the number of lines of magnets in the plate. We refer to these as "wide-line" and "fine-line". Wide-line plates have less holding power than fine-lines. So, it's a good thing that ours is a fine-line: lots of electromagnetic sucking power there.

The second thing you need to know is that, oftentimes on blueprints a flatness, parallelism or perpendicularity between surfaces is specified. These are what we call "geometric tolerances", and can be quite important. Had the print posessed any of these, then my decision to send the component to the grinder would probably have been the incorrect one.

So, after re-assessing the component with the new wisdom imparted by someone who had no business taking company time to assess, note, and return something which wasn't his to deal with to begin with, I re-made my decision to send it to the grinder.

Just to be sure, I added to the note: "The grinder will suck it down, and there's no geometrics. It will be fine."

I then went to talk with Mr. P.S. and return it from whence it came. He was tied up doing math with his back to me, so I let him be and simply put the component back.

Imagine my surprise when it was in my area once more, just prior to leaving. The note had one new addition now: "NO!"


So, I figured screw it, I'm giving it to someone else because I can't kill the guy, and I was tired of this.

Guess what was ground and perfect the next morning when I came in?

To Mr. P.S. I say this: Do your job - not mine.

(05/27/10 - 7:22 PM)
I was watching a show the other day on steam engines. At the commercial break, a factoid popped up on the screen about this monster, the largest steam engine ever produced at 70' tall and 650 tons (that's 1,300,000 lbs. folks).

Being the old machinery / steampunk nerd that I am, I flew to the office to Google it. Here's what I found:

"The steam cylinders were jacketed, having an OD of 50" and a bore of 40".

Live steam circulated between the insulated outer jacket and the steam cylinder to minimize condensation. This is a very serious concern in a vertical engine. I don't know how they cleared condensate from the upper cylinder area.

Each cylinder had a condenser, an air pump, and a vacuum pump. This ancillary equipment enabled the engine to operate in either condensing or non-condensing mode. The actual operating configuration is not known.

The 56-ton main flywheel was actually a gear of 216 teeth, 30' in diameter with a 24" face, which drove a 72-tooth pinion of 10' diameter at a speed of 120 rpm. At the time, the main gear was the largest cut gear ever made, while the 17,000-pound pinion was the largest continuous casting ever made.

The pinion drove a series of distribution shafts totaling 252' in length, whose diameter decreased from 9" at the engine to 6" at the far ends. From this main shaft system, eight power distribution shafts, each 6" dia. and 658' long, were driven via bevel gears to power the array of machinery inside the Hall. Seven of these shafts ran at 120 rpm; the eighth, powering the woodworking equipment, ran at 240 rpm.

The pinion and the power distribution shafting were below ground. Suitable belts connected these shafts to the overheads used to power individual equipment. The total overhead shaft length was 13,000 feet.

The engine was powered by an array of 20 boilers, each rated 70 hp, via an 18" steam pipe 320' long. This power source operating at a nominal 25 pounds steam pressure determined the rating of the engine in operation. The engine could produce 2500 hp with 80 pounds of steam per Centennial Exhibition specs."

*(This was excerpted from Practical Machinist.com)

I also learned that the term, "Running balls-out" doesn't mean what you might think. It's a term I actually hear a lot. It turns out that the governors on steam engines have two balls that spin. As they spin, centrifugal force allows them to drift further and further away from the spindle. When they drift too far the governor activates a fail-safe for an engine that is out of control.

When at rest, the balls are in; while in motion, the force throws them out. So the term essentially refers to an engine running to its maximum capability prior to shutting down to save itself.


(05/26/10 - 8:55 PM)
I'm a sucker for quantum physics. I can't always wrap my head around it, but it still fascinates me.

I watched a program hosted by none other than Stephen Hawking the other evening, which explained time travel in a way that I could truly comprehend for the first time. Here's what I learned in a nutshell:

1.) Time travel backwards is impossible due to paradoxical occurances. The example given was this:

Imagine a mad scientist, who invents a time machine that can go back in time one minute. He takes a gun through the machine, and shoots himself on the other side. Who shot the scientist?

Because a paradox cannot occur and be explained, time travel in reverse is thought to be an impossibility.

2.) Time travel forward is possible in two ways:

One way is to move faster than others are moving. We already know that objects in space experience time less quickly than objects at rest on the Earth. This has been proven in atomic clocks, albeit on an infinitessimally small scale.

So, imagine that you can move at 99.9% the speed of light. You're on a train, doing just that. Time is relative to the observer, so as you're traveling, time is slower for you than those not on the train. And here's what proves it out:

Imagine that you're moving this fast. Now imagine that you get up from your seat, and run toward the engineers cabin. Because you will never be able to travel faster than the speed of light (remember Einstein's e=mc2 equation which states that energy=mass x the speed of light squared - meaning the faster you go, the heavier you get, and the more energy it takes to move you, hence creating a circular problem), so time for you has to slow down in order to keep you from doing so.

Time, being relative to the observer in this case, means that when you get off the train, you have experienced less time than others who were not on it.

The second way time travel could be possible, is to find something really, really massive and get as near to it as you can. The larger an objects mass, the greater its gravity. And gravity warps time and space. As such, if you got in close to a black hole, without penetrating the event horizon, you could conceivably experience less time than others who were standing next to, let's say, a marble.

I love this stuff!

(05/25/10 - 7:03 PM)
A former employee of ours had the nerve to come back into the plant today to hand out invitations to his graduation open house.

Said former employee was fired for slapping a fellow, female co-worker on the butt and telling her she liked it when she balked.

Then he had the nerve to outright lie about it to me, before being dismissed.

And as he's handing me the invitation, and my mind is slowly wrapping itself around what is happening at that moment, he also mentions cheerfully that, "Hey, did you hear? I'm havin' a kid!"

So you haven't even graduated, you clearly have issues, and now you've spawned. Super!

This brings me to another point of fact for the week: All the wrong people are getting knocked up.

I received intel that one of our former employees (who now works part-time at Walgreens, while her mooching boyfriend sells drugs, sleeps around, and takes her money), is pregnant for the second time in two years at the ripe old age of almost nineteen.

THEN, as though that weren't enough, I learned that one of the owner's sons ex-girlfriends (who also attends church with them) is having a child. Normally, this one would have been a surprise, but at least I would have thought she could handle it. Until I heard that the father was a twenty-four year-old, four-time D.U.I. recipient with a blow and go in his vehicle who is known amongst the shop staff as something of a low-life, male slut.

What in the hell is wrong with people?

(05/24/10 - 9:22 PM)
I saw an advertisement on the television tonight, as it ran in the background. It was for government subsidized cellular phones. This got my attention pretty quickly, as 'government subsidized' usually makes me hear, 'You're getting screwed again, sucker!'

On the commercial was a woman, with child in tow. I waited for the commercial to state that it was for some sort of necessary reason: Job interview call-backs; medical necessity; SOMETHING.

But, it was not to be. Instead, the woman lauded the phone, and how great it was to have calling and texting to keep in touch with all of her friends and family.

At this point the commercial ended. And I was angry. Why in the hell is this necessary?

So, I posted it on FaceBook. Big mistake. I got into something of a disagreement with my sister-in-law, Kathy (whom I still love dearly) who stated that the commercial's psychology sounded 'spot-on', as no one wants to be ashamed of the fact that they need help [paraphrased].

I was stunned. While I agreed with the point about the shame, embarassment, etc., I was floored that someone would be okay with this for anything other than utilitarian, emergency uses. Even non-activated cell phones can dial 911 (or so I'm told - I've never actually tried it, for obvious reasons). So why in the world should I pay my tax dollars to keep some lady in touch with her peeps?

I'll say it again: Social programs are out of control in this country. And, yes, it's all anecdotal on my part, but the anecdotes keep piling up.

Here's a new one this week:

I know a family. They have been tax-paying citizens for all of their adult life. They recently fell on hard times to the point where they had to make the tough decision to receive food stamps to see them through. A situation which, I feel, this sort of progam is specifically designed for.

They were declined.

A second person, who is the step-daughter of a co-worker and friend of mine has elected to take the hedonistic approach to life. She doesn't like work, she doesn't like rules, and she wants everything for nothing. And, unfortunately, her grandparents think that they must accomodate her, lest she die or something. She also routinely spends money on cigarettes and alcohol - a fact that some people feel isn't relevant, but I feel wholly is.

So, imagine my surprise when this co-worker and friend confides in me that she is now receiving food stamps and other public aid without a permanent address. She has had ample opportunity to help herself, yet she has declined it. My wife and I offered to help her in any way that we could. Wanda offered to help her interview and get a resume ready; even to find her clothes.

My Boss offered work for her.

Nope. She chose the 'I don't want to do that, let's go have fun!' route.

And she receives all the aid she needs.

Anecdotal Evidence: 1 | Studies: 0

(05/22/10 - 5:18 PM)
Spent the morning with Wanda in Madison. We got our oil changed at the Subaru dealership, then went to Half-Price Books to >AHEM< pepper some specifically targeted titles with my own personal promotional bookmarks. I know, it's probably wrong. But for the life of me, I couldn't put a negative face on it.

The odds of it working are slim, but I'll take slim when the bookmarks cost me next to nothing.

The Kindle version of the book is still selling well (which blows my mind) while the trade paperback seems to be wont to catch on the way I would like.

I also got almost 11,000 views on my Facebook ad this week, with 5 confirmed clickthroughs. So, hopefully one of them bought.

We just keep plugging away at sales, waiting for the big break to arrive. I know that I personally moved a good number of copies this week, and Wanda moved a few as well.

I just can't wait for the whole business to take on a life of its own: something I know is possible, but will take a lot of doing to bring to fruition.

(05/21/10 - 9:13 PM)
Today, Google celebrated the 30th anniversary of Pac-Man in a big way. They created a name banner that was an actual, custom, playable version of the much-beloved, groundbreaking game. It was definately the highlight of my day.

(05/20/10 - 8:06 PM)
Finished the 5th and final season of Alias this evening, and was sorely disappointed. I had some inklings of how I felt the series would end, but I wasn't even close.

I realize that season 5 was nothing more than closure for the die-hard fans, but I still can't help but feel that it could have been more involved. Perhaps that was intentional. Who knows. At any rate, it was a good series that, at times, felt a little forced. But in an age of bad serial television, the continuity was well received. Though I could have done without the multiple-shifting allegiances every five minutes.

(05/19/10 - 7:04 PM)
I finally broke down this morning and called the doctor for some pain medication for my arm. I can only describe it thusly: Imagine taking a three-inch pair of needle nose pliers, puncturing the soft tissue in the crook of your elbow, clamping down on all the musculature and tendons and ligaments and other goodies, twisting five times and holding it. That's pretty much what it feels like in there, and coupled with its desire to remain rigid, and my need for it to be otherwise, I just couldn't take it anymore.

(05/18/10 - 6:42 PM)
Garnered a lot of positive response from the RRStar article, which was refreshing. Heard from some old friends, and spoke with individuals who I've spoken with on the phone for years, but have never met: "Now I know what you look like!" was a common response.

On the whole, it appears as though a great many individuals read the paper. Which was the whole idea, I suppose.

(05/17/10 - 8:26 PM)
I'd like to say a big thank you to Dena, my PR Manager, for pulling this one off: Rockford Register Star Article

Also, I went to the doctor again this morning, as my arm was in a great deal of pain over the weekend, and seemed to be getting worse. The diagnosis? A superficial blod clot in my elbow region in one of the non-major veins. Super!

The prognosis: Fine, but the doctor has no idea when the little guy will shake itself loose. >SIGH<

(05/16/10 - 7:18 AM)
Woke up waaaay too early this morning to the incessant call of a bird that I can't ever recall having heard before. It didn't stop, so I figured it was time to cut my losses.

I've spent the week passively working on promoting and selling my book. It's popped up on all the usual suspect websites this week, with the exception of Borders.com - come on guys, what are you waiting for?

It's also gone through a price reduction when posted on Barnes & Noble (their call, not mine) which, in turn, caused one on Amazon.com which, in turn, made for some very unhapy early buyers.

All I can say is that I'm truly sorry - they're cutting into their share, not mine, and mine is scant to begin with. I had no notion, and it's within their rights. So all I can do is apologize, and thank you once more for your support.

Hopefully, we've seen the last of that.

On the promotional front, nothing has gone right this week, but between Dena and I we're learning a ton (for good or ill), so I chalk it up to experience and move on. Learning is always worth doing.

Not sure what's on tap for today, but I would love to get back at Robert V.S. Redick's latest now that I have the fortitude and lack of pain and narcotics within preventing me from doing so.

(05/15/10 - 4:28 PM)
Spent the morning at Mom's finishing belt sanding the last remains of the latex-based stain from her deck. Over the winter, I had left my old, beat-up, but still 100% functional belt sander in her garage. Some snow melted near it, and she informed me a week ago that she had thrown it away so that I, "Didn't get electrocuted.".

This, after I spent twenty minutes attempting to explain to her that not only would it be fully dry and, most likely, unharmed, but that I would also be plugging it into a GFI outlet. These two things, I assured her, would keep me well alive into my forties.

Apparently, it was all for naught, because it is now gone.

Last saturday, she inquired about a replacement - which I felt horrible about, not only because it was patently unecessary, but it's a tool I seldom use and she doesn't need to be buying frivolous things such as that.

I made my case, and apparently wasn't entirely clear. When I arrived this morning, I was presented with a perfectly servicable belt sander that under normal circumstances I would have smiled and accepted with grace. The problem was two-fold: It was smaller than the one I had had (nothing I couldn't get over) which caused me to have about $60.00 in surplus belts that I could no longer use (not as surmountable when coupled with my next statement) and would also require new ones to be purchased in the proper grit in a small quantity (also an expense.)

So, when we weighed everything out, it made more sense to get the larger one that was commensurate to the one that was prematurely retired.

Off to the local big blue box home store we went. Mom was making the return, and so I went and got the appropriate one and checked out. As I was finishing, she came running up and gave me hell for checking out without her, as everyone around me became suddenly very interested in my life.

I calmed her down, and we went outside to discuss it, but she was having none of it. I later got to the bottom of it, but it was so out of character for her that I felt awful.

This is why I need to just stay on task.

At any rate, we got back and I got to work. Turns out the new sander is, in fact, superior to the one from 1984 that I was using (still workable for my needs, though!) The new one made quick work of the remainder of the decking, and within 2 1/2 hours the mind-numbing, 50+ hour task that spanned almost 8 months and two emergency surgical interruptions was finally ready to receive stain once more.

I said my goodbyes, and headed home. On my way home, I got a call from my wife, and we agreed to have lunch when we each respectively got home. Unfortunately, she had a migraine settling in, which made that impossible.

I spent the afternoon trying to be quiet, and read some.

All in all, a strange day that I wouldn't care to repeat anytime soon. I'm tired, I'm sore, and I don't have the fortitude for argument that I probably should have come equipped with today.

Now I just have to find a Saturday when my brother is free so that we can stain the sucker and be done with it.

(05/14/10 - 8:04 PM)
Today was a fairly good day at work. The Boss ordered pizza for everyone (we're having a stellar year, all things considered), our grinders that I bought in January were finally delivered and placed today (now to get them wired in and installed) and we inked a new contract for a new machine to replace an older one from '98 that we've used into an early grave.

Progress and forward momentum abound. Hopefully, that's a trend that will continue.

(05/13/10 - 9:22 PM)
Spontaneous dinner at La Casa Grande with Wanda this evening. It was nice to just sit and relax after a tough day on both our parts. Wanda has to deal with alot of frustrating things at the firm she works for. The only difference between she and I is that I'm in charge of fixing most of the one's at my place, while her employers tend to do the 'head in the sand' trick (as most of her employers have). So, in some ways, it's alot less distressing to me.

(05/12/10 - 8:33 PM)
I've been coping with hydromorphone (generic for Dilaudid) withdrawl since Sunday. I've been on it for three weeks since the surgery, and my body apparently was not happy about losing it. I can't keep any food in me, I can't sleep, I get the shakes, my pores alternately feel like volcanic geysers and icebergs, I'm physically exhausted, and all I want to do is sleep even though it never really comes.

I'm hoping that by tomorrow things will clear up, as I'm finally feeling less muzzy and "Petroleum-jelly-visioned" this evening.

It was a fun three weeks on the pills (alright, not really), but I almost wonder if the pain might not have been a better choice.

(05/11/10 - 8:22 PM)
This one comes compliments of my sister-in-law, Kathy:


(05/10/10 - 7:16 PM)
For those of you haven't already noticed, there's a new link in the menu bar of this site leading to the all-things-book-related area. It's got all of the current active links of import with regard to the sale, distribution, and marketing of the book. Check it out, if you're interested - there's a lot of good stuff there. Well alright one or two things, anyway.

(05/09/10 - 11:04 PM)


(05/08/10 - 10:36 PM)
Spent my morning doing what I have now affectionately dubbed "Whoring myself out" over the new book. I stopped into town and found all of one public billboard which I proceeded to flyer with extreme prejudice. I was going to visit an old friend (in both senses of the word) but she wasn't around.

Next, I went to visit my Dad and step-mother to give them a copy of the book. My Dad seemed somewhat excited, and then let me know that he would read it just as soon as he finished the Sarah Palin book he was reading, which was just great and had I read it?

It was a little disappointing, and it brought to light the difficulty I've had the whole time that the book has been in existance: namely that the dedication page holds the names of seven individuals for taking the time to actually read the thing. Five were Wanda's family members, one was a friend of mine, and one was my sister-in-law. Where was my family? Notably absent.

But I digress. I then went and got the names of some dealers who I thought might be able to purvey my work at the local antiques malls, and passed them along to Dena (one of the dedicatees, and my official PR gal - who also happens to be my wife's sister.)

She was worried about doing a good enough job for me (which is silly, because she's amazing), yet managed to get me in the Rockford Register Star during her first week of active PR.

I'm supposed to be in there late next week (not sure on the day yet) and I couldn't be happier about it.

On the whole, the book is moving nicely, although to places I never would have guessed, while alternatively NOT moving to places that I figured were sure-things. It's odd that way.

Tomorrow, I work on custom bookmarks that will be strategically left at venues around the area, so that should be fun and challenging in a crafty sort of way.

(05/07/10 - 8:04 PM)
This week really took its toll. I worked 50 hours in five days (which is actually less than normal when we're this busy) and it simply kicked my heinie. I have to get my body ramped up again to work, or I may not make it through week two.

(05/06/10 - 6:44 PM)
Just when you think Mr. Phillips Screwdriver has done it all, he turns around and surprises you.

Today, I had a job from a customer that they wanted modified from an existing component, to match a component that we make for them. I pulled the print that they wished the existing component to look like in the end, and then I made copious notes on the drawing, as well as colored in the areas to be modified so that there could be no possible way that confusion could arise.

Our second shift employees came in, and Jim (our Expediter who is responsible for divvying out work as he sees fit to get it done in a timely manner) gave it to our newest member of the Sugar River team.

He was in the restroom, so he elected to leave it on his machine which is the international symbol in our shop for "Jim has been here - do this next please."

About twenty minutes later, Jim sees said individual working on something completely different, and asks why he isn't working on what he had left for him while he was in the restroom.

"I have no idea what you're talking about, but I saw something matching that description in Mr. Phillips Screwdriver's hand. He took it up front."

So, Jim goes to investigate and - lo and behold - there is the item in question in the inspection area. The item now has all new notes, thoughts, ideas, questions, etc. all over the print where once only my clear and concise directions had been. Some of my instructions, in fact, had been crossed out in favor of apparently "better ones" imparted by Mr. Phillips Screwdriver, even though he wasn't the originator of the project.

So, we got gutsy and asked Mr. Phillips Screwdriver what the deal was, and he informed us that the print didn't make any sense to him, and he thought it should be done differently. This was his explaination for having invaded a co-worker's area, removing the item to be machined, taking the time to re-vamp the entire print, and then placing it where I would find it the next day - completely un-worked on.

My, what big balls you have!

(05/05/10 - 11:12 PM)
My wife and I watched the much-anticipated "Paranormal Activity" this evening.

After the major letdown of "The Strangers", which a number of people touted as the scariest movie of all-time (uh, no) we were then told that this film, in fact, was far scarier.

And while indeed having its moments, it just didn't pan out for us. I liked the indie feel of it, and I liked the premise, but it just seemed like it could have been better. Don't ask me how (which makes me something of a hypocrite, I realize) but it just felt like it fell short of it's potential.

So, we wait for the next one, and hope to be scared.

(05/04/10 - 8:06 PM)
I'm finding that the biggest caveat to selling the book at the moment is getting people to believe that it exists, and that there is no punchline waiting at the end of the statement, "You should buy a copy of my book!"

My morning and afternoon UPS drivers both thought they were being set-up for a joke, and even one of my co-workers came up to me today and apologized about being so cynical because he "...thought I was kidding about the whole thing."

Which just goes to show that while being funny is good on some levels, it can also have its drawbacks.

(05/03/10 - 7:23 PM)
First day back, and it was a long one. I was ready to sleep about the time I got there, and ten hours later, things weren't any better.

The upside was that the day was extremely busy, so it went by fast. The downside is that I have to do it again tomorrow.

(05/02/10 - 8:37 AM)
Trying to psyche myself up to return to work tomorrow after being absent for twelve days of doing nothing. And doing it like a professional, I might add.

Our afternoon with Wanda's sister went well, and it looks like we're green-lighted for the book promotion. Which is great, because she was a perfect fit.

Had a simple dinner with Wanda, and then we just hung out and watched Alias on DVD late into the evening.

Had a weird dream last night that tied together fishing where we used to vacation when I was young, cylon raiders, ethnic politicians, and on and on. The dream spiralled all over the place and, as per usual, was extremely vivid, well-populated, well scripted, and the whole nine.

I wish that I could record my dreams in real-time; I could make a fortune.

(05/01/10 - 12:30 PM)
Spent the morning working on the computer, and doing chores around the house. I also went outside and picked up a good majority of the twigs in my backyard that the high-winds of late had dislodged.

My brother stopped by this morning en-route to record some songs with some friends of his, so I got to visit with him for a few minutes.

Then I worked on the media library until... well, pretty much now.

Wanda's sister is coming over this afternoon to discuss promoting my book. It's something that I have no personal desire to do on alot of levels (predominantly time and energy), but I think the one glaring issue is self-promotion. I can do that to a point, but I think it's easier for a third-party to do the sorts of things that I, as the author, would feel sheepish about doing.

I hope she accepts my proposal: She's smart and talented, and I think this would not only be a good fit for me, but also great experience for her.

Plus, I thought it might look kind of keen on a resumee.

As far as other plans for the afternoon, I think that should pretty much take us into the evening, where I plan to be slothful. Very, very, slothful. While I've drastically self-reduced my medications over the past five days, even the little that I am taking still makes me extremely sleepy.

The wounds seem to be healing nicely, and the lividity in my stomach area has all but gone (although what's left has shifted all to one side. A perplexing thing, until I realized that I lay on that side 80 percent of the time while sleeping.)

We also decided to open up the house today. I mean REALLY open it up. Between that and Wanda's cleaning (which I love her dearly for), the house smells nice and fresh and crispy (and not at all like cat waste and recovering husband, with a hint of last nights' dinner.)

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