The pressure of TV

I like watching certain television shows, as many of us do. But since my office is in the…well, office, and the TV’s in the livingroom, I find myself falling behind

And look how fast we’ve arrived at my current topic.

See, first it’s just a week or so.

“Have you seen the new Once Upon a Time?”

“No, I’m gonna just watch it on Hulu or the DVR next time the TV’s free.”

OK, but I work all the damned time. So soon I’m not just behind a week, it’s been four, and the old one’s gonna fall off Hulu and end up on HuluPlus soon, and it’s in HD so it’s taking up a TON of room on the DVR and we need to get that off there – my not watching is now keeping OTHER people from watching THEIR shows and I need to sit my ass down and watch the thing already except I really don’t have the time so I tell them to delete it and I’ll real fast watch it on Hulu tomorrow but tomorrow I get a call from a client or get caught up in the budget and now I have a day before the oldest one’s going to fall off…

When I reach this point, the major part of my brain is going “Oh, fuckit. It’s just TV. In a year you can buy the freakin’ DVDs. This is just not that crucial.”…but the other part of my brain is pointing out that I said the same thing about Royal Pains, White Collar and Leverage, all of which I am also now so behind on that if I don’t buy the DVDs, I’ll never get caught up.

So I should watch them. But I really don’t have the time or energy to do that. It’s attention taken from the things I want to give my attention to during the hours that I don’t HAVE to be working, and as much as I want to know how Emma’s going to break that curse, I also kinda wanna level that IronMan challenger on Wyrmrest to 85, and I’d like to get my Sims together already, maybe without using a cheat this time, and I’d really, really like to finish that book I’m reading because I’m so very much not reading enough lately and as a professional WRITER I kind of need to be reading on a regular basis.

So TV tends to lose, and once again, here’s a show I really DO like, and everyone else in the house is into and watching regularly…and I’m not. For god’s sake, I still have the Doctor Who Christmas Special sitting on my harddrive waiting for me to watch it, and the new season starts up soon. And really, after allll that nagging to get my mother watching it, and she finally IS, I seriously need to stay caught up on that show if absolutely nothing else.

I have this picture in my mind – six months down the road, in my new apartment with Tyger, we’re sitting in front of the TV, DVD boxes stacked up in order of importance, watching through every show I fell behind on over the last three years.

I think she’s gonna kill me.

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Leave the box alone!

Before I begin, let me make this clear: I usually am indeed in a relationship on Valentines. When I haven’t been, I’ve spent it with my mother and we’ve had a blast…because even before my father died, he wasn’t exactly a big gift giver…and he was a musician. Which means on any given holiday he was working.

So, my fiancé sent me this cartoon tonight:

(courtesy of xkcd – a great, GREAT strip)

While this is a great strip (seriously, I love them)…it demonstrates a basic flaw with this holiday – it’s simplicity and people’s failure to understand and embrace that. Folks, this is the most turn-key, push-the-button-and-you’re-done holiday ever, ever, EVER.

Now, before we go farther: Yes, it is a created holiday. Yes, it’s entirely commercial. No, there is no real meaning behind it in any way. And YES, she’s STILL GOING TO THINK YOU’RE AN ASS if you SKIP IT based on ANY of that, or really, any other reasons. So stop trying to reason a way out of it or around it, and seriously, STOP trying to “think outside the box”.

This box is fine.

So, now that we’ve got that cleared up, let’s take a look at what you should do this valentine’s day:

Non-sexual relationship (re: underaged, not ready, only been together two weeks, whatever the hell the reason is)
FOR HIM: A video game, a book, a movie, or a gift certificate.

FOR HER: A box of chocolates and some flowers.


New sexual relationship (re: together less than six months, still humping like bunnies)
FOR HIM: A video game, a book, a movie, or a gift certificate, and a gift certificate for oral sex.

FOR HER: A box of chocolates, some flowers and a gift certificate for a massage – one you give is good only if you’re willing to do it.


Established sexual relationship (re: together a while but not married, engaged or living together)
FOR HIM: Porn. Seriously, give the man porn. He likes porn. So do you, if you’re honest with yourself.

FOR HER: Take her to dinner somewhere with a view. Give her a small, not expensive necklace. And chocolate. You do not get out of giving her chocolate. You know what she looks forward to on Valentine’s day? Going home and eating that damned chocolate.


Entrenched sexual relationship (re: married, engaged and/or living together)
FOR HIM: Porn to SHARE WITH HIM, and buy yourself something sexy to wear. All he cares about on valentines is getting laid…he’s already stressing about the day enough.

FOR HER: Flowers, a gift certificate for a PROFESSIONAL massage, and chocolate. Also, take her out to eat, but if you’ve been married a while, give her notice. She needs to buy something to wear. And let her know you remember – because at this point, that’s all she cares about. That you remember the fuckin’ day and think to do something special. Jewelry if it’s been a few years since you did that. If you’ve been married more than ten years, and you don’t know these rules, you’re lying about being married anyway.


Entrenched relationship that’s lost it’s sexual fire (re: married fifty plus years and not apparently a member of my family :p )
FOR HIM: Yeah, if it hasn’t happened in 5+ years, it’s not going to. Buy him a movie, a book, or a gift certificate, and a nice watch or something comfy to wear around the house that doesn’t remind him of the lack of sex in an overt way.

FOR HER: Again, if it hasn’t happened in 5+ years, don’t make it worse by hinting for it. Buy her chocolate, flowers, and whatever sparkly thing you can afford and know she’ll like. Take her out to dinner, and just have a nice evening.


And that covers it. Seriously, that’s it. And hey, you know what wasn’t in that list? Him buying HER lingerie. Do not do that. She doesn’t like it – and it probably won’t fit. She’s either much larger or smaller than you think and either way she’ll be insulted both that you thought that was her size, and that you got her a gift that was basically a gift for YOU. This holiday can be SO easy, and you can just get on with your damned lives if you just stay IN THE DAMNED BOX.

Seriously, this is not the time for creative thinking. It’s not appreciated unless you REALLY know what you’re doing. Most of the time? You just want to get her the damned flowers and candy. She really only wants the candy anyway – the flowers are to show off to her friends.


(note: I’ve edited this post like three times. I do not know why it’s doing funky things in Google Reader. I’m sorry :p I don’t think I can fix it.)

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Hey, the site’s back up!

We got hacked yesterday. And I don’t mean “We” as in, “these sites that my family/company owns”…I mean “We” as in my freakin’ HOST.

Now, there are ups and downs to being on a small host – the upside is that this rarely happens, because you have to know the place exists in order to hack it. And you have to care enough. So this doesn’t happen frequently by any means. HOWEVER…

…when it DOES HAPPEN it’s a PAIN. Because it’s a small company. No one’s there to answer the phone, no one can answer any questions, and the problem is never solved quickly or easily. I mean, they got it done in about 48 hours from what I can tell, but that wasn’t quite fast enough for us, as we had a networking meet last night we had to skip, because that’s…a lot of first impressions to blow if people look up the sites right there and then, as current tech allows people to do.

So while I DO love VividHosting (seriously, they’re awesome – unlimited emails, additional domains, it’s kickass) it’s kinda a pain when something goes wrong to not have the kind of coverage/protection the big boys provide.

On the other hand, we have one account and, like, seven sites, all hosted neatly and cleanly under their own domains and accessible from one central place. So I should stop complaining :p

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A long three weeks

So here at the house, we’re scrounging up a month’s worth of money so that mom can finally finish the freakin’ set of books she needs to finish. That’s not the problem, though.

We can scrounge up the money, there are lots of options, since we’re only trying go to get through one month – but she’s…

I may kill her.

Apparently, while this is something she needs to do (which we all agree when she explained it – we support her entirely) – she does not do well not making money. I wonder if she realizes this. But she’s been in one SHITTY mood since she made the decision.

Half of it might be that she’s scared. But a good portion of it is just old-fashioned bitchiness.

This is going to be a very long three weeks.

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I promise, my problems are very different from yours.

No matter what your problems are, mine are different. My current issue is pretty straightforward, except where it’s not.

I need money.

See? Simple. Straightforward. But see, most people, they’d go get a job. I can do that! I’m very hireable. But see, that’s where you and I differ, because, as Amy says in Dr. Who – here’s where it gets complicated.

If I go get a job, I won’t have time to write Better Papers Mean Better Grades, a book in a series that are planning to put out. If I don’t write the book, we don’t put the series out. And then not only am I out money, I’ve let down a company.

Also, if I go get a job, I am locked into a paycheck and can’t start building a career in Ghostwriting, which is what I want to do. Getting a job means stalling my career even farther, and if I don’t START that career until I’m thirty, I’ll lose quite a bit of credibility with potential clients.

Likewise, if I get a job, I won’t be here in the house, to support my mother, who needs it, quite desperately.

But I’m broke as shit. I have $30. I’m in deep trouble.


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April 14th

My father’s birthday was April 14th. April 14th, 2010, he was on stage for the last time, doing a birthday jam at the Villa Nova. A year later, and he’s just gone.

On April 16th, 2010, he went into the hospital. And came out a week later. Then back in. Then out. In. Out. In. Out. In. Out. May 29th, we were told he had stage 4 cancer.

He’d had it since November – when they diagnosed him with pancreatitis. And sent him home with a diet. He hadn’t had pacreatitis. He had cancer. And no one ever bothered to test him for it. No one did any scans. And every doctor was shocked that no one else had done that – and then didn’t do it themselves.

May 29th, he was given six to twelve months to live. He asked my mother how he was going to live that long if he couldn’t EAT. He said he’d be dead in a month.

On June 28th, at around 10am (I’d been up all night so I’m hazy about the time) he passed away.

I really hated it when he was right. He was always right. And I always hated it.

At the memorial service, his brother-by-love, who he met in pre-school, and who was his closest friend to the very end, said he was always asking “Is it enough?”. When he was on stage, “Was that enough? Loud enough? Hard enough? Soft enough? Energetic enough?” “Did I study hard enough for that test?” “I got all A’s – think that’s enough?” My uncle, at the service, said “Yes, Tom…it was enough.”

No. It was not. That’s BULLSHIT. It was not enough. It wasn’t enough yelling, or pounding, or fit-throwing. It wasn’t enough. He couldn’t have been a bigger asshole. But it was NOT ENOUGH. It’s a year later, and I would give anything for him to scream at me to turn off the fucking air conditioner, to demand where the FUCK HIS SUNGLASSES are, to ask what the HELL I’m doing up so late, or why I can’t fucking keep it down while he’s trying to sleep. To come into my office, sigh at me, and sit down, and start eating the food he brought home for only him, no one else – because he was lonely in the livingroom.

To call at fucking three AM on his way home from a gig, to ask if there’s ice in the house. And then to demand that I wake my mother up, who’ll yell at me, because how DARE I come between them, he wants to talk to his WIFE.

To demand at two AM that I get up and play cards with him because I WILL REGRET not doing so some day! (FYI – THAT I do NOT regret. I had a midterm the next morning. I would have flunked. I played with him the night before and the night after.)

…but mostly…I would give anything to get up at eight AM, go into the kitchen, and find a chocolate-frosted donut bar, thick and heavy, waiting for me, because he went through DK’s on his way home and brought me a donut for breakfast because he hadn’t gotten to see me in days.

And I’d absolutely kill for him to come into my room at 3am, kneel next to my bed, put his head on my tummy, and just fall asleep there, because he missed me.


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