Guru Purnima

Today is a day to celebrate spiritual and academic teachers:

Jeff, because he’s both.

My fOlks of course.

Doug Bain and John Hamilton, two of my high school teachers who are most responsible for shaping how I think and why I bother to.

Sue Sparlin.

Patricia!  So pithy, so witty, so wise.  If you ever decide to write a book of life advice, I will be ripping pages out of the typewriter as they come and killing myself laughin’, I’m sure.

Mike and Jarmo.

Dorothy Dunnett.

I won’t say all the Unitarian ministers I’ve ever had dealings with, but most of them.

And the Grey Hymnal, a haven from the stupidity of the world.

All the black, trans*, differently othered and First Nations activists who have kicked my ass and pointed my thoughts in a different direction.  Without their clear voices, without their clear vision, I’m just another temporarily-abled settler colonial gender essentialist living the good life on unceded land.


Happy birthday Jeff.

My goodbye to a dogooder organization

All my outrage leaked away when I realized most white activists care more about dead male lions killed by dentists than dead First Nations women killed by cops.  I need to get away from social media and get my moral bearings for a while.  There can be no more important issues than how we treat each other in our daily lives, and whose lives need our love and care most.  I don’t trust the opinions of your organization on what is important any more.  Thank you for your work.

Moar wurz

600 wordie word blurdie birdies yesterday. I am very much enjoying having the editrix on facebook now, we are trading witticisms with much amusement.

I broke the small fan yesterday.  I accidentally kicked it over when I was carrying laundry and one of the fan blades snapped.  I had only recently rearranged the airflow to bring ac air to the basement and the difference was so remarkable Jeff was saying FAN under his breath within minutes. (The fan also pushes air down the hallway so cooler air has easier access to our bedrooms – I was FUCKING SWELTERING last night and it’s not a good look on a post menopausal woman.)  We’re off to the hardware store to get another one as soon as it opens.

Sorry Jeff.




Keith and Paul came over last night and we walked in the neighbourhood.

Apart from running laundry and writing and a brief schlep and returning library books I did nothing yesterday.  Very happy with progress. I read George’s most recent blog post to Chipper and she enjoyed it; I also fired it off to mOm.

I have to stay off the internet today, it makes me so unreasonably mad!  Although I do enjoy knowing what my friends are up to. Also, when a man disagrees with me it isn’t always misogyny although Jumping Jimmy Christmas it appears that way sometimes.

So I looked up the guy’s name on the internet, found out that he’s a prof at a University one of my fOlks graduated from, read his student reviews, and realized that even if he is a published sf author, and even if his comments on genre are pronounced with professorial fussiness – I don’t have to take him as seriously as he obviously takes himself.  All before 7 am.

The reason I say this is as follows.  He says Madeleine L’Engle’s Wrinkle in Time ruined the genre fiction by mixing magic based (fantasy) and science based (science fiction).


It’s all fiction, ya dingbat.  Genre is a convenience.  It’s not holy textual purity for crying out loud.

I am mashing genres so hard with this trilogy they’ve all gone off to get ice and aspirin, but they’ll be back.


Being a middle aged fannish woman looks like this

“Oh we’ve never seen anything present with those symptoms before, and candidly if you lost 40 (gained 20) pounds most of the problems – which appear to be in your head anyway – would go away, and here’s an antidepresessant and here’s an antipsychotic since I haven’t destroyed your ability to complain about your imaginary symptoms and there’s another test I’d like you to try. I wouldn’t be using that word iatrogenic in quite that snippy tone my dear.” Rinse, repeat with different doctors, 15 years later get a diagnosis from literally the FIRST DOCTOR WHO TAKES A PROPER HISTORY OH MY GOD. I wish I had heard this story only once. I have heard variants of it at least once a year for the last ten.  I only dodged it by stopping with the prescription mood drugs. I know I would have had a smoother time of it this last while, but life with the mountains ground down to a Vancouver lawn in July and the deep rolling waters turned into greasy holes full of algae ten feet deep / across is no place I want to live.


Also, god damn child abusers.  We need to end this scourge.



Mike rented the basement of the Hastings Sauna and I got very warm last night.  Also in attendance were Jarmo and Susanna, Cassidy and Paul.

I was really careful not to get overheated and I did sleep reasonably well until I woke up half an hour ago.

Thus concludes Mike’s birthday weekend.  Hope to write lots today, only managed 200 words yesterday.

service plus party

Paul and I were very moved by the service for David Hamilton, who in death seems even more quietly mythic than he was in life.  A genuine, humble, intelligent, thoughtful, listening kind of man, with music in his very soul, the eulogies were funny and moving and real and the comments by his daughters-in-law particularly stood out as coming from two very different women, but uttering the same grateful praise.

We spent a lot of time catching up (I refused to look at my watch.)

So we were late to the restaurant, but it all came out okay.

Then back here.  We played Cards Against Humanity and had so much fun.  I haven’t heard Jeff laugh that hard in company since high school.  Both of us laughed until we were leaking, and at the point when we thought our ribs couldn’t take it any more we’d start laughing again.  Keith played games master. Also in attendance Cassidy, Mike (birthday lad), Joe and his gf, whom I’ve probably been introduced to four times but whose name I cannot remember, Brian and Chari, Paul of course.  Paul had the advantage, with Keith, Mike and Cassidy, of having played it before, and he came up with some combos that were hilariously unprintable.  I won a round with the best and simplest two card combo.

“For my next trick I will try to pull HOPE out of MY SEX LIFE.” Keith was the judge that round, ya shoulda seen his face.

I also won a round with “Dick Fingers”.  Since there was also “Five Dollar Foot Longs” coming up as a card in that round the group immediately came up with a  band name of Dick Fingers and his Five Dollar Foot Longs.

Yes, we had fun.

Jeff wore his Stargate “No Place Like Home” hoodie, squee.

I don’t even know who won and I don’t care.  It wasn’t the point.

Keith noted that you aren’t supposed to play it with family members but we managed all that quite nicely.  It’s an extremely rude game, and you may learn, as Jeff remarked, things you really didn’t want to.

Thank you to Jeff for getting the pinballs going – Joe and gf, who is apparently a pinball enthusiast from way back, went downstairs and made pinging noises for at least an hour and then dropped into the middle of the CaH game.

Around 9:30 I realized I could no longer stay upright so I went to bed.  Also, darkness equals bugs.

Thank you to all the beautiful people, friends and Beaconites, who made it such a perfect, and perfectly exhausting day.  Now I can’t sleep.


The true final count was

Final word count for the day was over 1500 words.  (This included editing, since I was ripping adverbs and adjectives out with vigour.)  I still have not commenced the new chapters. Also worked on the chapter entitled Exit Interview.

Today a memorial service for a church member and a birthday party for one of my closest friends.  I find that often happens to me, two big events in one day; I imagine I’ll be ready to get my drink on by a quarter to five.

We blasted through the rest of the Bojack Horseman season.  I really enjoyed it, especially the stuff going on in the background and the non-stop shellacking of all manner of Hollywoo ‘types’.

One of these days I’ll talk about the process, but in the meantime I’ll just say I love Scrivener.

The latest theatre shooting in the States was at a feminist movie and the people who were shot and killed were all women.  There IS NO WAR ON WOMEN MOVE ALONG PLEASE.  Right wing radio gave him a platform for his hate.  And thank you for killing yourself you fucking scumskin, your parents and ex-wife probably got their first night of sleep in ages, despite their grief and horror.

1028 words today

Jeff’s off at a client’s and I’ve done my writing for the day, on the chapter entitled “I don’t know what they are for”, so I think I’ll have another cup of coffee and make a list. I can survive the next couple of days without issue – if I have a list.  mOm I’ll send you what I have of that chapter so far.  Domestic arguments about aliens.  Yeah.

Being able to comfort baby Alex was my big accomplishment this week.  The way he greeted me and Paul made me want to float away and dance with unicorns and other magical creatures.


Jump in and go where life takes you

Like today.  Breakfast out, followed by a hearty doing of nothing, and then Katie and Chipper called in rapid succession and then Paul called and said let’s go for a walk and I said I’d already arranged to go see Katie so I had to call back Katie to get the ok to have BOTH grandparents descend at once and she said yeah whatever, by which I mean to say she kind of sounded stuffing deficient.

Jesus, the point loading of Buster’s feet is like a war crime.  Okay, still gasping a little from the surprise.

Where was I.  Oh yeah.  So we stop at Katie’s and hang for a while and my god Alex is, like, so happy to see both of us – he will NOT stop smiling.  HE HAS A SMILE THAT SAYS “I HAVE SIX TEETH.  BEHOLD MY TEETH.  I HAVE A TREMENDOUS QUANTITY OF DENTITION.”   Seriously.  Nobody has been that happy to see me since I settled a debt. And it’s not fair, because he’s been a right bear to Katie all morning and the second we show up he lights up like a Christmas tree and stays that way. It is possible he was in his crabbiness objecting to his mother wearing makeup for her driver photo (a discrete amount, and a discreet amount.)

We pick up the CAR SEAT OF HOLY VIRGIN HOW MUCH DO IT WEIGH and remove the three canoe paddles and the bike rack from the back seat and then Paul doing the stuff, stuff, stuff of the CAR SEAT of HVHMDIW into the back seat, because it’s super hard to get the seatbelt past all of its hangup points and then we stuff Alex into it.  Katie aims at getting her L today but with Alex like dat who knows. One cannot plan.  One can only jump in and go where life, or in this case, your father’s car, can take you.

We go to Paul’s for lunch which is leftovers and fresh corn and bread and chasing cats across filthy floors – Katie doesn’t believe in overprotecting a child from household dirt and he was shiny with grime in some spots by the time he had given full faith and credit to his mother’s parenting style. She mopped him before we left.

I collect Mike’s birthday present and stuff it in the trunk. The gift is a long term loan of a mandolin whose provenance is much clearer than its ownership, being Edith, the little Aria mandolin which first came into our family when Keith decided to take lessons. It came to live with me and then it went back to Paul’s but he never played it so I suggested another berth and Paul enthusiastically agreed.

Katie decides rather than going straight home to her place we are definitely going to the Drivers’ licence place and she’s gonna do the test and Alex, sensing his cue, passes out like a good little lad, and Katie goes in for the test and the rest of us wait in the car and so Paul and I catch up on not much since we saw each other so recently, and Katie texts that everybody trotted off to lunch (they take lunch late because people come in on their lunch breaks) and so she waits a fair while to take her test.

Alex wakes up after a nice nap and starts to roar in a very soft, puzzled, low key kind of way, thrashing about looking for mum. I wander around the back of the parking lot with him, humming “Lift Every Voice and Sing” and he fusses and kicks and growls and does this high pitched whine, brief but indelible in the tinnitus-inducing sense of the word, and then I CAN’T BELIEVE IT he relaxes in my arms, starts to yawn and is commencing to grumble his way back to sleep (so long as I keep holding him) when his mother dances into view and he commences with that extremely vigorous kicking like holy shit I’ma break a rib.  HE IS HAPPY.  We stop at Home Hardware for a bucket (Paul is feeling fine, thanks for asking) so he can collect graywater when he showers and then we drop off Katie and go for a walk in the Quay.

On the way back I can’t stand how lonely I am without my friend Beer handy, so Paul got cider and I got an India Session Ale from Red Racer and then I tell Paul that I’ve been practicing Dave Carter’s When I Go and have actually worked it out on the mandolin and we play that for a while and sing our way through it once and then Jeff and I watched Sunset Boulevard for the first time each and so to bed.


What a day.  Weather has been stunning. Zero writing, but I don’t care. Tomorrow is going to be amazing.

350 words yesterday

I’m taking a break today, it was like pulling teeth yesterday, or at least, like my experience with getting teeth pulled, which is prob’ly a more accurate description.


One of the many filkers I haven’t met yet came up with this gem.


(tto “Red River Valley”, words: B. Childs-Helton)

Though from Stepford they say you are goin’
I won’t miss your sweet face or your smile,
’cause they’ll wind up on some other robot
to remind me of you for a while.

Don’t lament flesh-and-blood boon companions
as you hastily bid them adieu,
just remember the Uncanny Valley
and the robot that looks just like you.

Is it man or machine, what’s the difference —
just relax, you’ve got nothing to fear
when your new plastic pal writes a pop tune
and goes Turing with Kraftwerk this year.

The elite’s obsolete as the workers.
Don’t be sad or depressed or Deep Blue.
Just remember the Uncanny Valley
and the robot that looks just like you.

Yes, I just kissed a girl named Maria.
No big deal — she’s a robot, you see —
but I’m not really sure if she’s kissing
one more robot that looks just like me.

Let us press on to full automation
till there’s no human bein’ left to screw
or remember the Uncanny Valley
and the robot that looks just like you.