500 words today

I think I’m going to enjoy writing Honey in the Moon or Honey On the Moon, haven’t figured out which I’m going with. (There’s George being perfectly still because if he moves, Kima complains.)

The man who supplied the voice for Wallace in Wallace and Gromit has passed. He was pushing 1000 (96).

I slept like 12 hours today. I just don’t want to do any work unless I’m getting paid for it LOL.

Three more shifts after this one….



The last week

Came home from work at 8, having picked up some groceries, made some salad, and collapsed. I literally only just woke up 20 minutes ago, which means I slept for six hours and a bit. Now it’s time to head downstairs and find out if there is anything on the pvr.

Since I’ve told everybody else who’s important, I’ll tell the world.  I resigned last week and the 8th is my last shift. It’s not prudent or mature to talk about reasons; please do assume I had them. Working midnights was not the reason. There were many others, and I’ll stay quiet.

Here and elsewhere

Got a brief message from Mike; his insomnia is ragging him hard. He’ll call me later. 

Katie and Alex called, they’re coming over for coffee. I’d had a half-hearted wish to go to church this morning for the next to last service of the church year but sticky kisses from grandson come *first*.

Rowena will not stay in tune. That’s okay, the character I took her name from doesn’t stay in tune either. Hopefully my demi-luthier buddies will help me fix the problems.  Still plugging away at a tune or two.

Sent off the first 3000 words or so of Honey in the Moon to mOm, hopefully that will provide some entertainment.

Old mattress is now back on the top bunk bed and I have some room to maneuvre in here again. 


Mah god, playing pinball (Xenon) with Alex is now my go-to happy place The look on his face when that chuffing sound comes on is pure joy. Bwub-wub-wub-wub…

Kids and Alex have come and gone; it was lovely to have them and Jeff and I are kinda bagged all of a sudden.

I feel rather splendid though, having contrived to get mOm to speak to all of her descendants in rapid succession.


flight patterns

Calamari’s off the menu

 – all my alien friends are AIs consorting as cuttlefish 

who don’t wear clothes since it’s pointless when you never know for sure

which end your limbs will sprout from –

locavores can be boring but they’re not wrong

I want hearts of palm and freesias in winter

all flown in

I’m a fool for that deep sticky pressurized

pool of oil


massive and incremental

all the changes, pecked to death by ducks


the earth our opponent

I can’t understand how that’s supposed to work


space-x just launched something and I watched it in real time with Jeff

all as it should be, hardly any waste, everything visible and shared

it’s going to the ISS and it’s a good thing; a place where the Americans and Russians are demonstrating genuine goodwill, not this wild tango of unsanitary deliberate disinformation

I’m so wretched about all of that

so wretched with it

so brought low

the sun’s a fleering halfwit in a pollen tank

blinking through clouds

each string and bone of this wildhearted body torqued at random 

blinking through dry eyes and excruciating cut scenes

Flee – I’d love to – if I believed there was a place

elsewhere than a thief of progress 

for the progress (or its lack) is forever with me

whether I redeem my aeroplan points or not

The confessional is open

I like sex and getting to the bathroom quickly. It’s amazing how those two hobbies have influenced my clothing purchases over the last ten years.

So a FN woman was commenting on twitter about her continued and risible fondness for ‘unavailable white dick’ otherwise known as ‘the flirty white dicks of nullibiety’ and I responded that I had a white hot spot of recognition. But that sounded racist even though it wasn’t, so I changed it to red hot. Realized that was definitely going to sound racist. too. Changed it to orange hot in the end, that worked. She will never know how much I revised that poem.

I didn’t know I was a masochist until I started working on my racism. Until you start to enjoy getting hurt, there’s not much progress and the learning never sticks.

Okay, the hors-d’oevres are dealt with.

(HORN STAB! à la 5 Million Years to Earth!)

I was once the victim of demonic possession.

Before you put your hands to your mouths and pull down excitedly on the necks of your henleys, I must add an instant caveat, which is that no such goddamned thing ever happened. I had a brief and unintentional thought experiment pass over me, and it left a trail of wreckage in its wake that took weeks to clear.

I was at the inlaws’, and the only reading material was godly material, and under the influence of those badly written but somehow compelling works (one was a takedown of the Masons that read like it had been written by a committee of godly wackos) I started to think ‘what if I’m wrong about this whole atheism thing?’ And I felt the miasma of religion swallow, and engulf, and otherwise be rude with my person. I struggled and fought to throw the horrible ideas off; among those ideas that I was condemned to hell, that I was an abomination in the sight of God, and all those other feelings that you get when you’re in full doubt mode. 

The fact that the bed was as miserably uncomfortable is it’s possible to be while not involving sprawling on rocks in sub-zero temperatures might have had something to do with my mental agony. These things are, as they say, deeply intertwingled.

Anyway, I finally perceived the thought experiment as an external, demonic influence, a voice and a personality attempting to pierce the veil of my mind and gain control over it. It was entirely ghastly and it was easily two weeks before I was out from under the feelings and thoughts.

No, I was not subject to demonic possession. BUT I WAS RAISED ATHEIST and my parents are deeply committed to rationality and scientific enquiry and they also raised me to question my own perceptions against a large array of cognitive balancers, always a bittersweet advantage in a world where the irrational seems to mean PAYDAY but really means MAGICAL THINKING WILL SCREW US ALL.

Point being that if I can be made to briefly believe things that aren’t true, then people who sit in front of Fox all day are hosed.


400 words on The Book of Kind Words. I’m kinda cheating and writing the preface, but it’s writing, the alternately hectoring and beguiling style of my homilies.

New mattress seems fine and I’m not sorry I bought it – it’s amazing how they can cram this thing into a tiny box..  I am having *a* regret about the dulcimer though, I’m going to have to get somebody to sand off the fret buzz for the low D. In time, in time; I’m otherwise reasonably happy with the new instrument and have already set to work on a choon. She shall be called Rowena, or did I mention that yet. Of course +2 people know why but that’s my lot in life, to forever be playing to the smallest clique in the room.

I’m at a pivot point in my life and I need to clarify what to concentrate my efforts on but of course there are a million projects (40, eckshully, real ones) and I am but one puffed up goldbrick. 

Not been editing

3,000 words on Honey on the Moon in total – I’m working on it every day –  only 85K to go har har.

Mattress arrived today.

I ordered and received an appalachian dulcimer from Robert Worth and it ALSO arrived today, 60 bucks customs due excuse the fuck out of me.

I will stop spending money now; thankfully payday is Wednesday.

Feeling much lighter

I edited AND wrote yesterday (SOTW and HotM respectively) and practiced mandolin, and worked a shift, and did a shop, and felt gross and slept too much.

Now I’m feeling really kinda okay.  I was still getting migraine signs until a couple of hours ago, but I think it’s lifted and I’m much more cheerful.

There are apparently 113 fire trucks at the Cherry Street Fire in Toronto right now. Toxic smoke would be even worse if it hadn’t been raining off and on through the night.


I can’t sleep

I thought I’d do a bit of a core dump.

Why do I want to write? “Find the why and you’ll find the way,” says Michael T. Sheehan.

It seems an absurd question. Once I mastered letters, they were indeed my servants. I can make them line up and do things other people do not even attempt to do, especially not in the length of time I generally give myself to do it.

I write because I can. I write because characters sidle up to my mind and kick my ass and breathe in my ear and get anxious, anxious I tell you, when I don’t get them right. I write because I briefly visualize something interesting, (it has to be brief, as my powers of visualization are not great) or synthesize two or three pieces of recently discovered tech or science into a McGuffin. I write because I’m in love with someone else’s characters, and I want them to have a thousand first kisses, a thousand first sensual caresses, a thousand first ‘no, you say what you were going to say’ moments. The awkwardness and pressure of first lust, that wickedly funny burgeoning that fires HOLY FUCK along every synapse and ends in sticky cuddles. I write because until the editing starts, it’s fun. I write because even when it’s not fun, it’s worthwhile.

I write because I can spell. I know that sounds stupid, and spelling is nothing on talent, Chip Delany and Gerald Durrell being classic examplars. But I can see the words and they are as solid and real as bricks, except of course no one else can feel that way. I write because I’ve had a lot of experiences, mostly good, and I want to share them. I write because villains are trite, heroes are hard, and outwardly unremarkable people are anything but. I write because I fantasize a lot, about a lot of different things. I write because I am interested in just about everything except keeping my room clean.

I write because I don’t have to clean my room when I’m writing.

I write because I want to sew a bead on the things you think when you’re in the process of changing your mind about something. I write because I love talking, and I love dialogue. I write because I can say what I want to say about things that are important to me.

I write because nobody sees the world the way I do, and yet with each passing year I get more like everyone else. I don’t understand how that works, I may never.

a house

Having a house means that I can put up unexpected guests, and I’m good with that. Much love and hugs to the ones needing shelter…

First two hours of the shift last night were gross, the rest was okay.

It’s a beautiful sunny but damned windy day. There’s still power out for 8000 customers in the lower Mainland, but that’s far less than 6 hours ago, when the wind was blowing a gale.


Thank you to Tom for being Customer 31 for Midnite Moving Company.  Also to Tom and Peggy for feeding me lunch (stew with dumplings, leftovers but who the hell cares, Peggy cooked it) and THE BEST strawberry rhubarb pie I ever et, no fooling.

They picked me up and dropped me off too, so I really felt like visiting royalty. PEGGY AND TOM ARE GOING TO BE GRANDPARENTS AGAIN and I can’t say any more than that until later but really, it’s great they are being such successful organisms.

I’ve ordered a new mattress, it should arrive later this week.  My current mattress will get moved to the top of the bunkbed, which will make the cats happy, and I’ll get a hopefully flatter and more comfortable sleep – the old mattress is very hilly. I’m really working on having better sleep hygiene and I have to say I’m getting more and better quality sleep than I did before I was working, but also I feel sometimes… like I’m literally sleeping away the day, and my friends never know when to call me.

Something else happened with respect to work this week. I just learned that if you don’t enroll within 30 days of becoming eligible for benefits the payout is limited to 100 dollars for the first year.


LIKE FUCK YOU FUCKING FUCKERS. I didn’t get a reminder, not nothing, and there’s nothing in the employment contract about it, just that I’m eligible. I mistook it for 6 months, but it’s 3.

I should make another list… the last list made me super productive for the day.




Work is pissing me off so bad right now I almost quit in a rage, but I’ve calmed down a bit.  I need a job, but not necessarily this one.

It’s just tiresome that’s all.  She mumbles into her phone, I ended up in a yelling contest, she came downstairs and we thrashed it out. It’s exhausting.

I know where the morgue is now. I walked one of the housekeepers past it, as they hate going over to the Sherbrooke Centre at night and I ain’ ascairt.

Productive errand day, thanks Jeff for the loan of the vehicle. Project GET ALLEGRA SOME HENLEYS is now concluded; I recycled all the AA batteries; I picked up rilly nice treats, replenished the beer, got my fave soap, got another eye mask since I couldn’t find my old one. I also got two loads of laundry done, had a lovely long phone call with Tammy and slept a lot

The Trail

Walking the trail is a many stranded thing.

Some sing as they walk, the cheerful filthy songs of the schoolyard, or pop hits, or hymns from various traditions. Some go alone, some in silence.

A few are carried. There are portions of the trail where a chair will go, but not everyone’s that lucky, to have someone to help. Babies and toddlers go in slings, all the time. Then, by tradition, they need feel no pressure, as adults, to walk the trail. It’s a strange combination of infant and adult baptism, as a Christian explained it to me. I never understood baptism except as the delight taken in overwriting the expulsion from water that marks the creation of a human, not-breathing to breathing. This water is more important than that water, it opens a gate to heaven.

I will take the trail, for it is life. There is water there, a dozen icy springs where you can replenish your bags, and you can collect the rain that falls in the grim half of the year when the sun hides and only comes out once in a while to pick through its reflection in puddles.

Old people go when they’re told they’ll die soon. Some get better; some are carried off feet first.

The guides and the search and rescue people are, for the most part, worthy of the trust we put in them. The rangers who care for the trail, and collect a share of the take from the trail and the park that sits at the southern end, are a quixotic, taciturn bunch.

I’ve been told they are mostly ex-military. One of them is the largest properly formed man I ever saw. I could not claim to have met him, for we never spoke. Walkers later say, ah, him, the huge one, but not one of us has an anecdote or a witticism. He was silent, and let his companion do what talking was needed. Some say he can’t speak, but I doubt that. I think he has found congenial work, which matches his desire to speak.

I met only one who’d speak for any length of time, but I have walked the trail more than once, so I’ve had more conversations than most. This will be my sixth attempt. I broke an ankle the last time. I am choosing a more popular time of year now; I am taking a radio.

The attendants and rangers go up and down the trail as need calls.  Walkers start in the south and go north, and we all come back by boat, sometimes gaily drinking on deck, sometimes grimly puking below. This is true whether we do a half trail and get off at Corso Bay, or get off at the traditional end point, Rashid Inlet.

There are a handful few who walk, and climb, and crawl, across Hell’s Head, the most northern tip of the Island; it’s an excruciating, narrow trail, so dangerous that there are portions guides will not work. There are much easier paths set back from the ocean, but the oceanside affords views and camping not matched anywhere else in the world, to match the agony of getting situated; during the solstice one feels as if one was ‘hanging in the sunset for an eternity before dark finally steals across the ocean’. Or so says the man asked to say it by a camping equipment company.

Many people refuse to walk the trail, even though in some ways it has become an unsubtle badge of, if not citizenship, then civic participation. We must have more in common than being human, apparently, to feel some kinship. If we choose to plant our commonality in an activity that those who feel a horror for nature, its fecund rot and indifference to human scale, will shun, we state what we’re about.

This is a strange world, and we’re trying to make it into home. The trail is beautiful and its vistas, lookouts, waterfalls, outcrops of jagged rock, caves and hot springs are a string of precious gems along a prosaic string of, in spots, difficult hiking.

The first steep incline is called the Grampskiller. My grandson told me not to die on it.  I told him I wouldn’t dream of it. I go alone to think, to breathe, to plan, to grieve. I go to find something I lost, meet someone I miss, perhaps meet the being which has shadowed me since I first walked the trail.