today’s non-events

Got into a beatdown with a bunch of one of the most self-righteous pot activists (like there’s another fucking kind) on twitter today.

Come ON I smoke, but I don’t smoke and blow smoke in the faces of the allergic and the elderly, and they’re announcing it’s their RIGHT, because this is VANCOUVER, home of TOLERANCE. Yeah I’ll believe that when Canada gives back the unceded lands, you unregenerate failure of logic. I’m like a homophobe for harshing their mellow. Srsly. Got accused of equivalency to homophobia for objecting to people dousing the entire west end in pot smoke for their stupid fucking 420 festival (which leaves heaps of trash mounded everywhere and they’re all cryface because they didn’t get a fucking permit.) F*ck me!

I realized that when you put asterisks in f*cking swearwords you’re putting a leedle asshole right in the meedle of the word and since when you’re swearing there’s usually an asshole involved, it’s mesmerizingly poifect.

I love Buster, he’s an amazing cat. And he loves me too, I know it. I don’t think Miss Margot cares if I live or die, but Buster does.

My latest piece of fanfic smut has more than five hundred likes (it’s cute and hot, so there)

I’ve written a BDSM scene in the same ‘verse but I’m not happy with it yet. I had to put in about 200 words about how the scene is ‘necessary but non-consensual’ which kinda blows (or not!) since scenes need consent if they’re to resonate with me writing, at all. So it’s like “We’ve talked about this – I hate it when you want me (and need me) to top you but I’m s’posed to read your mind – and topping when you’re angry at your partner is a bad bad bad idea” followed by “Do what ya gotta, man, just hit me really hard.” Oh, and there are minor children in the house while this sh*t’s going down, just to make it even more like real life, and our heroes must deal with the domestic consequences of Daddies fighting. I LOVE A CHALLENGE. After all, continuing to have interesting sex after kids *is* a continuing challenge in real life. People want carefree smut? they can look elsewhere; to me smut always has a cost. Who bears it depends on who’s being responsible, or not.

Not that anybody wants to know, but I’m really not into any of those behaviours in real life. Nagging at volume is sort of where I max out, ask any of my exes.

Continuing to have the poly life discussion with someone. It’s painful. Really painful. I feel like I have my nose up again a particularly interesting window. I can smell bread baking. But no. G*ddamned heteronormative uncommunicative bushwah (on their end, not mine.) But at the same time there’s NO F*CKING POINT to becoming an elder if you don’t understand that real life takes time, opportunities for growth don’t wait, and if you don’t consider who’s going to be impacted by your decisions, your years, your grey hairs and and your learning means squat. I am still 22 in some corner of my persona, for my enthusiasms still have all the joy of my youth; I just can’t write everyone affected by my behaviour out of the script any more. I do from time to time, but not all the time.

Fortunately, since I’m pushing 60 with a broom, I can contemplate my greed like the gorram caged bear that it is. Still here, but not running the show.

Katie is still having a rough time and she and Alex are both sick again.

I am not having a rough time. I feel pretty good, all things considered. I have another two weeks of full time work. If that changes, I’ll deal with it. I actually have a plan to deal with it that I think will make almost everyone happy, at least temporarily.

Rogue One is a fucking fantastic movie. Getting eaten by Disney was the best thing that ever happened to the franchise.

Now to check if my money transfer has come through.

Dropped off

Katie and Alex and I saw humpback whales (two of them) from the stern of the ferry boat yesterday.  It was so marvellous!

The first thing I thought of when I woke up this morning around 3 am was Alex.  He has a memorable face, and such merry blue eyes.  Katie and I had a talk and I told her that I won’t try to pick him up or cuddle him again until he wants me to; I may wait years, or forever, but he’s just not that into me, so I’ll let myself be baby driven.

I was not able to get as much of the mOm-assisted edits done this time and while I’m disappointed I think it will be fine.  I’m not feeling any pull toward writing today so I’ll work on other things instead.

I very much enjoyed driving the Modo car, which is a Prius.  I didn’t enjoy the gas card not working so I have to make sure I get my money back.

DO NOT READ THIS IF YOU HAVE A PROBLEM WITH TURDS. There’s no picture, but some of you ****ers be squeamish.

I took a book by a Christian (Phil Ryan) out of the library.  It’s called After the New Atheist Debate and it’s a sort of Point Counterpoint on the New Atheist positions and the Defenders of the Faiths – including the horrifyingly sexist and racist Theodore Beale.  BUT it contained this gem: Alasdair MacIntyre is paraphrased by Ryan as saying “modern moral debates (are) ‘interminable’ because of the ‘conceptual incommensurability’ of rival positions”.

Blog post from July 2005

So Keith has been coughing and looking and feeling horrible, and last night around bed time he said, I’ll see if I feel like going in to work tomorrow. Paul and I both said, why don’t you call in sick NOW and then you can sleep in!

He sez, “I can do that?”

So he calls in sick. What I heard, “Hi, it’s Keith; feel like ratshit, so I won’t be coming in on Thursday.”

What he REALLY said was, “Hi, it’s Keith, I feel wretched, so I won’t be coming in on Thursday.”

Then I hear Paul say, in his proud voice, “Very professional!” at which point the top of my head caved in. I think I’m slowly going deaf…. it does run in the family.

In response to Pat Broderick’s whine about cosplayers

Hierarchical BS in fandom is going to happen. I’m troubled when our media preferences become more important to our tribal affiliation than the enduring sense of wonder that lifted us all up into fandom in the first place. Jealousy and envy are a part of life. Throw sexism, sizeism, publishing credits and perfect pitch into a small and vocal fandom and voila, ongoing eruptions.
 
Entitled people are likely to be cognitively biased enough to keep enunciating why their preferences ought to be the rules. (And whinge when they get called on it.) Those of us who do *not* find our preferences prescriptive for the entire universe of fandom…are “just happy to go to cons, meet new people, learn new songs and stay out of politics.”
 
Unless you’re a tribble, you shouldn’t hiss at Klingons. Or to rephrase, unless you have a physical problem with someone else’s embodiment of fandom (eg., using peanut butter as part of your costume when so many fans are allergic is unacceptable) the correct response falls along a continuum. Privately giggle with your friends, whine to your BFF or SO, or work through the irritation or anger in some constructive fashion. And now I pass the talking stick to someone else.

No walkies yesterday

I spent a fair amount of time at the shop cleaning and stooging about for tradesmen, but Ramey changed two lightbulbs without saying anything…. I think he was wondering if I was so clued out I wouldn’t notice.  I thanked him profusely.  The compressor on the walk in is working perfectly again.

Today I have a long list of things to do and I probably won’t get around to any of it.

 

Here is an interesting article about ‘the ring theory’ of kvetching.

A family story with some current relevance

A single kindness gets lonely

December 16, 1998

I remember the day Paul lost his memory.  His memory is no longer in his head, you see.  It’s a Casio 128 and his whole life is in it.  He left it on the plane from Toronto to Vancouver.

I’ve never seen Paul so mad at himself.  He was madder than the time he crushed his memory into the boards while playing crack the whip with the kids, and madder yet then the time he leaned over the toilet at work and it swan dived into the bowl.

He blankly said, “Well I guess I’ll never see -that- again,” and become very morose.  A couple of hours after we got to my parents’ place in Victoria, the phone rang.  My mother was outside and my father, who associates ringing telephones with drunken clients importuning him for assistance, refused to answer.  Paul picked it up.

“Is Paul there?” asked a pleasant female voice.

“Speaking!” said Paul, really surprised.

“I’ve got your electronic organizer!” she said.

One of the stewardesses had found it and looked in it until she came up with a BC phone number.  It was purest chance that Paul happened to answer the phone.

It came on the next flight to Victoria from Vancouver – Paul was thrilled, and touched.

So it was no surprise what Paul did when he found a daybook packed with so many names and addresses that the owner had started writing in the margins.  As soon as he saw it was a Vancouver address, he jumped in the car and drove it to the guy.  I accompanied him for laughs.

After loudly and repeatedly expressing his thanks, the gentleman told us that he was a committee chair, and a prof and an activist, and his whole life was in that book.  He had been contemplating recovering the information with something approaching despair.  He promised two things, and I know he did one because Paul got a sensational letter praising his customer service skills at work; the other was to promise that he’d photocopy his address book and put it somewhere safe first thing he got into the office.

So this is a reminder – back up your data.  It doesn’t matter if it’s on paper, a hard disk or chiselled into a rock.  Make another copy and put it someplace safe.  As soon as I got home that night I sent my mother all my friends’ email addresses as well as my address book.

It’s important to remember that a single kindness rapidly gets lonely.  That single act of being present and taking care will ripple out and have effects you can’t even contemplate.  When the world is kind to you it’s because the laws of cause and effect still rule.

I remember one other act of kindness of Paul’s.  We were driving up University just south of Bloor in Toronto and a stunning woman was stuck in traffic, four way flashers blazing, next to an old diesel Mercedes-Benz.  She looked quite distraught.

“My old car!” Paul said, because it was the exact same year and model as one of his first cars.  “I know what’s wrong,” and in about as much time as it takes to describe it, pulled in front of her, leaped out of the car, adjusted something inside the car, and got it running again.  I have taken a lot of pleasure over the years thinking of the story this woman must have told her family over supper that night.

We try to look after each other as a family, and try to emphasize kindness.  When we find things we return them, if there’s an address and a name.  Once I lost a sheaf of writing on the Royal York bus and some woman, who is an angel in human form, spent two bucks on postage getting it back to me.  I thank her, and I thank everybody who ever let me in, comforted my kids when I couldn’t be there, put a happy nothing day gift on my desk, or sent me an email from a friend of a friend.

Sometimes I think that an email inspired belly laugh in the middle of a brutal working day is a random act of kindness – travelling from someone I will never meet, at the speed of light.

If I ran a grocery store…..

Customer service rules for Allegra’s grocery store

1.  We’re here to sell you items and services you need at a sufficient profit that we can pay ourselves, our suppliers and our taxes, and do it at competitive prices.  When prices are higher than at competitors, we want to believe that this store, as a shopping and working environment, is worth the extra money.  If you think it isn’t, we believe you have the right to shop elsewhere.

2.  Everybody who walks into this store is assumed to be a decent human being.  If you act as if this isn’t true, you will be directed to this code of conduct and you may be asked to leave.

3.  The washrooms and a glassed-in soundproof box (The Silent Zone) are close to the front of the store.  The washrooms are there because the older the managers get the more they appreciate a clean handy washroom.  The glassed in soundproof box is for those times when children and persons with developmental or psychological disabilities just decide to scream for a while or need to be in a less stimulating environment.  It has reasonably comfortable plastic chairs, there’s nothing in there that can be broken (easily) and no piped in music.  It is not a place to park unsupervised children.  It is a place you can go sit down if you feel dizzy or tired.

4.  The staff in this store are trained and expected to be clean, courteous, accurate and professional.  Let us know if they aren’t.  Complaints about piercings and tattoos will be cheerfully ignored.

5.  The staff is encouraged to make decisions concerning their own safety and the safety of patrons in accordance with their training and their best judgment.  If you are stealing, hitting children, or doing anything that will make you famous on the internet, please don’t pull that “The Customer is Always Right” nonsense.

6.  The music in the store is chosen by agreement among the staff, as they have to put up with it for long shifts.  You only have to put up with it for an hour.  There are studies that show that canned music makes patrons spend more money, but our goal is to have happy repeat customers, not shave every dime we can from every person who comes through the door.  If the music is particularly bothersome please ask a cashier to reduce the volume.

7.  Studies have shown that you make more money if you put the highest markup items at eye level.  This store is set up so that the most commonly purchased items are between eye and waist level on an average adult.  We face up the goods so you can read them easily and will do our best to accommodate shoppers with special requirements.

8.  Persons caught consuming non-prescription drugs, tobacco or alcohol on the premises will be fired or banned.

9.  Please have your money or payment method ready when you come to the till.  As far as we’re concerned you can take your time, but the customer behind you will want to kill you.

10.  To the maximum extent possible, this is a no drama zone.  We all want to get in and out of here as fast as possible.  Feuds and domestic disagreements will be asked to move into the Silent Zone, and from there, right out of the store.

11.  Every staff member who deals with the public gets one free “Go F*ck Yourself” every year.  This means that if you are particularly threatening, physically dirty or notably unhygienic, creepy, homo-, xeno- or transphobic, sexist, trying to convert anybody to any religion, racist or otherwise persistently obnoxious, they may tell you in colourful language to leave the store.  If you get two free “Go F*ck Yourself” moments from two different staffers, you will be photographed and permabanned.

12.  Yes, there are security cameras.  They are kept in good repair, and they overlook the parking lot as well as the store.  They are reviewed after every incident and we keep copies off site for three years.

13.  Serving public employees in uniform and staff members get free coffee.  Everyone else will be asked to purchase their coffee or tea.

14.  Tampering with or damaging goods, whether you do it or someone in your care does it, means you have purchased them.  Repeat offenders will be banned.

15.  Persons who are arrested for theft from this store, or pass bad checks, will have their pictures posted and be asked politely to leave if they are foolish enough to come back.

16.  Patrons must wear footwear and keep what goes under a bikini covered while in public areas of the store.  Two seconds of nipple while nursing an infant gets a hall pass; anybody who complains about women nursing their infants will be cheerfully ignored.

17.  Consensual sex in the store or the parking lot which makes it onto the security cameras will be viewed and mocked by a select group of employees. Participants will be banned. Non-consensual sex will be immediately reported to the authorities.

18.  There are two ways of framing the golden rule.  Do not treat other people how you don’t want to be treated yourself, and behave to others as you want them to behave to you.  We want this environment to be safe, clean, welcoming, honest and, dare we say it, fun.  We will take health and safety seriously, and pledge to do our best to be honest and kind.  So, no firearms.  Please.  Except as carried by on duty professionals.

If you don’t feel obliged to hold up your end of this, Go F*ck Yourself…. and have a nice day!

Greetings to my new readers

I understand that a couple of lurkers have joined the smallish throng of fans of this site…. let’s just say that there are many more readers and lurkers than commenters and posters.  And I don’t want it like that, but if people have better things to do than comment on my blog, I’m for being okay with that.

I have my set list for Conflikt V, which will be made of awesome.  Conflikt is the only SF convention I have perfect attendance for.  I just wish that the border experience going through customs at Airports was less disgusting.  I got selected for special treatment the last time and it wasn’t fun.  So I am very glad to be going down in the car.

Ziva is fine, thanks for asking.  She will need a valve job at some point, and I still haven’t put the winter tires on her, but she is running great at the moment. 

Katie cooked dinner last night, wOOt!

And now, I have to face the list of things to do at work.  Everybody have a productive day and don’t miss a chance to be helpful and pleasant, you never know when your behaviour will make the difference between happiness and sadness in another human soul.

 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russell_Hoban is dead.  The man who wrote Riddley Walker is gone.  Sad, sad.  He once wryly remarked that death for him would be a good career move.

Saturday round up with extra moose

Considering that I think marriage is a crock I don’t know ‘zactly how to feel about this.

Disturbing pic of a kid done up Clockwork Orange style.

I’m only posting this in the hopes that pOp will forward a story about his childhood, maybe with an optional explosion.

Man, I didn’t know there was a floor show for the ferry line up. Ocean floor, that is. You can all tell me what a crappy pun that is later.

Very happy to have her back.  Jeff and I were worried about her.

Moose go back to school, get edumacated.

Moose, go away

I ignore the dog and play with the ball, for I AM MOOSE.

I make weird noises, ’cause I am a MOOSECALF.

SMG is back on TV. We’ll see.  I’ve started watching Lost Girl so I don’t know if I’ve room on my TV plate.

 

I HAVE UPDATED the Red Deer link… check out the pics.

 

I blame the patriarchy

….is a blog, not mine.  The rude and rowdy feminist who runs the site quoth she, quoth she:

Did you know that not being happy for people on demand is some sort of crime? It’s true! The minute you aren’t happy for somebody who is making the worst decision of her life, they absolutely have to take you off their speed-dial and snub you in social situations.

This in response to not being thrilled when a friend announces impending nuptials.

Saturday morning thotz

I don’t agree with everything this person says about swearing, but I remember reading somewhere that people who are freaked out about swearing are less egalitarian than people who aren’t.  Not particularly safe for work.

Believe me when I tell you this is cool. SFW.

Paul sent around an email yesterday announcing that a court date has been set for the woman who knocked John off his motorcycle.  It had been looking increasingly like nothing was going to happen, but the slow grinding wheels of justice are finally in motion.  May 27th nothing will likely happen except her entering a plea.  Paul will keep us all apprised.

I had a very productive day yesterday; I replaced the burner I covered in melted plastic; re-upped on the lease and gave the landlord six months worth of checks; did a load of laundry, worked on half a dozen songs with Paul and wheedled him into going to the first Tuesday at Jericho for the year in exchange for me working up Erica’s Song well enough to perform it, and man his guitar support is tasty as always), got plates and insurance for the car, cooked chicken schnitzel with quinoa salad for supper (Paul made the salad and insisted on sending me home with some, and it had so much garlic in it it practically triggered an altered state of consciousness); messed with the intonation on my mandolin now that it’s been repaired (sounds okay now); almost wrote a new tune and replaced my bank card which was compromised again if you can believe it (somebody tried to take $500 out of my account in Surrey three days ago and so the baloney alarm was triggered).

I of course find it screechingly funny that my bank knows I’d never take $500 out in Surrey.  Welcome to the Panopticon.

Jeff is likely off to Victoria and will likely be bringing back Andrew, so I have some ‘comfort of guests’ things to do today, not that I mind.  House guests are fun.  For three days, anyway.