This diagram puts it all nicely into perspective. Most wanted: Alberto Gonzalez.
Warning: This story series will contain scenes of a sexual nature. If this offends you, please don't continue reading it.
I got the call while working on my thesis.
“You've got to come right over.” . . . “She's gone. I'm there now, it's empty just trash on the floor.” . . . “No the door was open, I walked right in. She's fucking gone.” . . . “I'm going after her. I have to find her.” . . . “What if she's in trouble?”
Debbie waved at me as I jumped into my car. She wore tight jeans and an equally tight sweater. Her hair was tied into a pony tail and she looked ten years younger than she was – she looked my age. When I didn't call over to her she came out to the street.
“Where you going in such a hurry?” I still love that Oklahoman twang from a woman. When I man chops his words like that it just sounds like his mouth is full of shit but when it's a woman's voice I can close my eyes and envision the words coming out from a pretty smile.
“I have to stop Dylan from taking off after Misty. She left.”
“Oh I knew that girl was trouble. Let's go.” She ran around the car and jumped into the passenger seat. She smelled of sandalwood.
“What about Bob?” I asked.
“Honey, it's football season. We won't be seeing him until after the championships.”
He was the high school coach after all.
In preparation for another episode in my story, The Stripper Sex Chronicles, I want to repost what's already happened.
Episode One: We meet Dylan and I set the stage for how we became roommates.
Episode Two: I tell about how I started having sex with a girl who was after Dylan and I talk about Dylan's dream girl, Misty.
Episode Three: Misty shows up and Dylan's life takes a turn: Not for the better.
Tomorrow I'm going to publish episode four and the story takes another turn.
Meanwhile I want to alert y'all to the most amazing blog, by the most amazing writer I've had the pleasure of stumbling across. Grace is/was a stripper in west Texas and this is the chronicle of her life with advice on how to behave in a strip club. Brilliant, gripping, and always pragmatic. I'd buy a lap dance from her anytime. Grace Undressed - go read some posts from her archive. As a writer, I'm awed and as a man I'm cowed.
- rick, writing again
Since life and work have totally been kicking my ass this summer I thought I'd make a meme about other kick-ass things.
If you want to play along, just put together a list of things that you think kick ass and post it on your blog or in my blog's comments - - - then you get credit for playing!!
#1 KickAss thing:
The Dark Knight. This one really kicked ass . . . no shit. I went to the theater thinking that this was going to be another pretty good superhero movie and hoping that the whole genre was still on the upturn (after Iron Man and the generally good quality minus the third movie of Spiderman). This movie went beyond the genre and beyond all my expectations. It was forehead-sweat tense throughout the whole movie. Heath Ledger put in a performance I couldn't have even nightmared. He combined malevolent anarchy and sociopathy in the Joker to make him the one villain who could turn the Batman into his own worst enemy. Christian Bale was turned into a bit player in a movie dominated by superior performances - Michael Caine, Aaron Ekhart, Gary Oldman and Morgan Freeman all stole scenes from our beknighted superhero. No one, however stole a scene from Ledger. This movie was his from the opening prologue to the batman's final decision. I thought talk of an Oscar nomination was hype . . . not so for he displayed a depth and extreme not even shown in Brokeback Mountain.
Canoing. I haven't really been out on the water in a while and I forgot how much I like it. Here I live in a state with more shoreline than any other and I never go to the lakes . . . well that's going to change. I'm going to buy a canoe. Here in Minneapolis you can buy a permit and just leave your canoe locked up to public racks like bicycles. I'm going to do that. Alan, want to paddle around a bit when you visit?
Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog. Joss Whedon, creator of some of my favorite series has done it again with the Dr. Horrible show - a straight for the web 45 minute singing extravaganza starring Doogie Howser (Neil Patrick Harris). I thought it inordinately clever and completely over-the-top and as a web-based form of entertainment, it was groundbreaking. Oh, and Sugar bought me the t-shirt for my birthday and you've gotta love that.
#4 KickAss thing:
My house. The jump from 1,000 sq feet to 2,000 sq feet has been incredible. I have an office, the kids have full, real bedrooms. I can cook in the kitchen without fighting for every inch of space. The hardwood floors don't hold all the allergens in and I'm noticeably less sneezy this year. The garage is an oasis of space where I can fit all the equipment I need for work with room left over for tools, bikes, and the rest of our recreational equipment. A year here has been a year of freedom, space, and growth.
Sean Tevis. This guy is running for the state legislature in Kansas. He's web saavy and has a great platform concentrating on privacy, security and rights. Check out his site, the intro comic in xkcd style is brilliant and I don't know about you, but the guy got a little contribution from the Ninja Writer.
Have a KickAss weekend.
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The Story Club is back and this week I'm going back to a classic, one of my favorite stories of all time.
Nightfall by Isaac Asimov.
This is a story that everyone ought to read at one time or another. In the comments let me know if the story worked for you or if not, why. If you couldn't get through it, let me know where you stopped.
Aton 77, director of Saro University, thrust out a belligerent lower lip and glared at the young newspaperman in a hot fury.
Theremon 762 took that fury in his stride. In his earlier days, when his now widely syndicated column was only a mad idea in a cub reporter's mind, he had specialized in 'impossible' interviews. It had cost him bruises, black eyes, and broken bones; but it had given him an ample supply of coolness and self-confidence. So he lowered the outthrust hand that had been so pointedly ignored and calmly waited for the aged director to get over the worst. Astronomers were queer ducks, anyway, and if Aton's actions of the last two months meant anything; this same Aton was the queer-duckiest of the lot.
- rick, reading
I stood alone in the entry, melting snow dripping from my parka and boots. Bishop Payne after shaking my hand left to find Christine. It looked like she found me first.
“I'm supposed to help you with math,” I said.
“But I have plans.”
Bishop Payne walked in. “Rick, take off that coat and you two can get started.”
“Dad, Jake's going to be here soon and we're going skating,” Christine said.
“With your grades? Why would you think you get to go anywhere with your friends?”
“Jake's my boyfriend, Dad!”
Bishop Payne looked at her calmly, fatherly, like I'd have expected a bishop to look at a young girl in his ward. “Jacob is not your boyfriend, Chris. First of all you're not sixteen and you know that Mormon girls don't get to date until they're sixteen. Second, he's not of the faith and you don't think I'd allow you to date someone outside the fold do you? Now you have some homework to do and I've asked Rick to help you with it.”
She turned and stalked into her house. The bishop put his hand on my shoulder. “You're a good, upstanding young man. Maybe Chris can learn from your example.”
“Thank you, sir,” I said.
Christine was breaking pencils at the kitchen table. She'd grip the number two in her small hands and bend until it snapped. Then she took another from the box.
“I'm sorry,” I said. SNAP
“I didn't know. I mean I thought you wanted some help.” SNAP
“Hey let me show you something.” I figured that as long as we were snapping pencils, I might as well do one too. I placed it on the back of my fingers with only my middle finger over the top and then I slapped my hand on the table and the pencil broke. SNAP
“How'd you do that?”
“Like this.” I showed her how I held it and she took another pencil and did the same thing. “Be careful,” I warned. Her fingers weren't much thicker than the pencil itself.
She slapped her hand on the table and then screamed, “Ow!” The pencil was unharmed. “That fucking hurt,” she said.
I must have made a shocked O with my mouth because she quickly realized what she'd said. “Sorry. I have a potty mouth sometimes.”
“Is everything okay in there?” her dad called from the family room.
“Everything's fine,” she called back.
“Do you want me to help you with math?” I asked.
“Kind of. I want you to show me how to do the homework from last week,” she said.
So I did each problem and she copied it in her careful swirly writing. She learned nothing, copied everything and smiled at me a couple times. That made it worth the time.
As I was getting ready to leave her sister, Lisa, came walking in.
“So Dad is pushing Rick at you this week. What a joke.”
I left quietly.
Another way a McCain Presidency would be another Bush term is on the economy. Things are grim and both McCain and Bush refuse to admit that it's bad. They're just going on the same old trickle-down pay for it later Republican failures that have tanked the dollar and put us in multi-trillion dollar debt with a large chunk of that obligation to China. Not smart from the self-admitted economic amateurs.
Bank Stocks are tanking and that's prompting a run on banks which includes violence. The police are coming to bank lines to keep people from harming each other which would trigger riots. Meanwhile the president thinks everything's a-ok! The chairman of the fed thinks we've got some serious problems. The dollar's at its lowest point ever with respect to the Euro, the housing market is in a freefall, foreclosures are putting people on the streets along with maladjusted war veterans, unemployment is up and now the Dow Jones Average is showing the effects finally of what the average person has been feeling. Someone needs to tell Grampy McSame and his advisers that these economic woes are real and for those of us who didn't commit adultery with heiresses, it's serious.
You know how to tell when things are really bad, it's when the administration tells us that everything's okay. Like in Katrina when the administration was assuring everyone that they had it handled - meanwhile people were drowning or living in squalid conditions without any chance to escape the horror and Brownie was doing a great job - remember that? Well the other day we were assured that the government wasn't going to have to bail out Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and now they are going to do just that. Guess what they're doing now? They're assuring us that the banking system is perfectly safe and that your money is insured. That means I'm taking all I can out of the bank as soon as possible.
Obama might not be able to fix all these problems and they might overwhelm him, but at least he'll step up to a podium and give it to us straight. All we need as Americans is a dose of the truth. That's something we haven't had from the government my entire adult life.
- rick, off to work.
We spent over 7 hours in the park yesterday: Large, two of his friends, and me. The boys had a great time and were able to go on all the rides they wanted at least once. They spent two hours in the water park. Oh, the weather was absolutely perfect - 80 degrees, sunny, slight breeze. Couldn't have planned that better, and being there on a Monday was best because the lines were short.
One thing kind of creeped me out:
A family of seven people were going through the park with remembrance shirts on: black t-shirts with the image of a boy who'd died and the words, "In Remembrance of Joshua Michael Burns." On the back was the date 7-15-07. I understand remembering the departed and doing stuff in their honor (well, I actually don't understand that), but making it such a public display strikes me as more of a publicity stunt than of actual feelings and honor. I guess I'm too cynical for that sort of thing.
Another thing was really weird:
A family dressed in identical tye-dye t-shirts with the cub scout emblem on the front and Pack 293 on the back were making their way through the park. The father was a grumpy-faced ball of anger. The mother kept screaming at the boys to keep them close. The boys, ages 7 and 9, were alternatively crying about rides being too scary for them and begging to go on other rides. In the Tilt-a-Whirl line I asked where the rest of the pack was and the mom said, "We were the only ones who made our fundraising goal."
This was their reward. Ick.
Gotta run - work time and I'm going to be late. C'ya.
I'm trying to get back into things here . . . good to start with a meme. This one is from Wry Catcher.
1. What do you add to your coffee? I don't often drink coffee. When I do it's a latte - vanilla - over ice.
2. What are you reading now? Oh holy hell! I need to update my list, write some reviews. Up next on the listening list is Acacia by David Anthony Durham and I'm reading Brasyl by Ian McDonald.
3. Do you own a gun? Yes, more than one.
4. Are you registered to vote? Yes
5. Do you get nervous before doctor appointments? I've solved that by not seeing doctors.
6. What do you think of hot dogs? I rarely eat them, and when I do I make sure they weren't produced in any of the meat packing plants in which I've worked.
7. Favorite Christmas Song? It's all just background music, I don't have a favorite.
8. What do you prefer to drink in the morning? EmergenC.
9. Can you do push ups? Yes
10. What was the name of your first boyfriend/girlfriend? Her name was Tipwan. I asked her to "go with me" back in 8th grade.
11. What’s your favorite piece of jewelery? I have this cool silver clasp bracelet that Sugar bought for me. I should take a photo of it.
12. Favorite hobby? Canoing.
13. Do you work with people who idolize you? I work with my little brother and my son. Of course they don't idolize me.
14. Do you have ADD? No
15. What’s one trait that you hate about yourself? I'm inflexible.
16. What’s your Middle name? That's none of your business.
17. Name 3 thoughts at this exact moment. I wish I'd written the plot for Dexter. Should I go to the lake today? What should I make for breakfast?
18. Name 3 things you bought yesterday. Yesterday was unusual, I bought a lot of stuff at a $400 trip to Costco. A fan, new pillows, and chocolate chunk cookies.
19. Name 3 beverages you regularly drink. Mountain Dew Live Wire (the orange kind), Water, Beer (Newcastle)
20. Current worry right now? How's Large going to do this school year. His problems with his mom are foremost in my mind. I hope he can overcome such a difficult challenge.
21. What side do you dress to? Right to left I suppose.
22. Favorite place to be? Right here, at my desk.
23. How did you bring in the New Year? We have a ritual here - board games, cards, snacks, and pajamas. It's my favorite.
24. Where would you like to go? Alaska again. Actually I'd like to go along the coast - kayak, canoe, etc.
25. Name three people who will complete this. I don't predict other people's behavior.
26. Whose answers do you want to read the most? These are kind of inane questions. Answer if you want, I'll read them, but I don't have great anticipation for deep insights with these answers.
27. What color shirt are you wearing? Black. It's a BTTD shirt.
28. Do you like sleeping on satin sheets? How would I know?
29. Can you whistle? sure, but I can't do loud wolf whistles and I can't whistle in tune.
30. Favorite colors(s)? blue, green, black, grey
31. Could you be a pirate? Sure
32. What songs do you sing in the shower? I think about my writing in the shower, I don't sing.
33. Favorite girls name? What? Want me to write it in the back of my social studies notebook and surround it with hearts? Dumb question.
34. Favorite boy’s name? See above.
35. What’s in your pocket right now? Cell Phone.
36. Last thing that made you laugh? Large and I were joking and wrestling yesterday.
37. Best bed sheets as a child? Dallas Cowboy sheets my grandma bought me when I was nine.
38. Worst injury you’ve ever had? I have an ongoing knee problem - most of the cartilage has been worn away. I can't jog or play basketball any longer because of it. I guess that's not a single injury, but that's what you get.
39. Do you love where you live? Yes
40. How many TVs do you have in your house? Two. Yeah, the kids have one now.
41. Who is your loudest friend? Mark.
42. How many dogs do you have? One, and he's a real dog. Over 80 pounds, drools, obeys commands: perfect for me.
43. Does anyone have a crush on you? I highly doubt it.
44. What are the most fun things you ever did? Isn't that what this blog's all about?
45. What are your favorite books? Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes; To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee; The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien; Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut
46. What is your favorite candy? M&Ms, plain.
47. Favorite Team? Oklahoma Sooners
48. What songs do you want played at your funeral? I'll be dead you know. I won't really care. Just nothing with God in it - or heaven, or that'll make emotional people cry. Just play some early 80's brit like Depeche Mode or Madness. No one can cry at that.
49. What were you doing at 12 AM? Drinking a beer, surfing the net.
50. What was the first thing you thought of when you woke up? Who the hell is calling me on a day off?
Okay, we're back on track. I'll start working on tomorrow's post.
- rick, meme'ing.
Obama voted for telecom immunity and I, like everyone else I know (or at least those of us with principles) is pissed.
But Obama's not a stupid man. We all know that, so what's his game? What's the deal?
What about this:
The telecoms get immunity for spying, and turning those records over to the administration, but Obama has said that investigations will go on when he's president. What if the deal is that the telecoms will testify against the Bush Administration when officials from that administration go on trial?
If so, why doesn't he just say so after the bill is signed?
I hope that's it. Otherwise I remain pissed.
It's the Fourth of July and fireworks are going off all over the city.
My dog's hiding under my desk. He's over 80 pounds. There's not a lot of room left for my legs.
He's not much of a protector.
Christine had delicate features; a porcelain doll so fragile that I wanted to put her in a case and protect her from damage. I stared at her during Sunday School and she'd smile back. She knew I had a crush and I wasn't the only one.
Lisa was younger by a year but she was the wild one. Where Christine's brown hair curled perfectly and held combs or ribbons Lisa's hung straight and unimpeded. Christine spoke softly and giggled when she was happy. Lisa laughed loudly and used words I'd rarely heard - Damn, Shit, Fuck!
They were sisters but in my thoughts I separated them and gave them different backgrounds, different lives. In those daydreams I was part of Christine's life.
Lisa made fun of me for my love-struck fascination with her sister. I knew I didn't stand a chance, but Lisa rubbed it in cruelly. During games at Wednesday Mutual meetings she'd loudly tell Christine not to be on my team because it'd give me false hope. On Sunday mornings in Sacrament Meeting she'd turn and point at me and smirk while whispering into Christine's ear. They'd both laugh.
Lisa smoked cigarettes out behind the school. She hung out with the kids who yelled at the teachers and skipped classes. Christine wasn't like that and even though the other boys thought Lisa was better looking because she was sexy and edgy, Christine was the princess and I wanted to be her prince.
Not only was she out of my league because she was so beautiful she was also on the Officer side of the base. My father's rank entitled him to the third apartment of a dumpy four-plex that looked like every other dumpy quad for ten streets either way. Her father was a colonel and they got their own house. They shared walls with no one and even had a private driveway and a hedge.
At church my dad was a counselor to the Elder's Quorum President. It was a menial job in the Priesthood, an all-male construct in the Mormon Church. Her father was Bishop because he was more righteous and he was a natural leader.
Then, just Maryanne to Peter Parker she needed help in school and she asked me. She was going to fail math and be held back - could I just come over and show her everything she needed to know for the finals? It was her dad's idea - Mormon kids are supposed to help each other so I couldn't refuse. He was right about that, I couldn't refuse Christine.
I put my math book in my frayed and taped book bag and headed over to Christine's house to teach her some math and learn a lot about life . . .
- to be continued.
This rankles me. As a liberal I'm supposed to maintain a higher level of political discourse and reach across the aisle. I'm not supposed to disenfranchise conservatives and I'm not supposed to call them names?
I'm angry. My anger is deserved and rooted in realism. These fuckers are ruining my country and I'm supposed to react calmly. I'm supposed to go slowly while they drive the national agenda careening into hell. No. Fuck them.
They run for elected office on lies and misdirection. Campaign after campaign they reach the lowest of the lows and then claim, "you guys do it too." Well, that's a fucking lie. A big fat fucking lie. Right now they are spreading lies about Barack Obama being a Muslim, having terrorist ties, not being patriotic and we're supposed to smile and remain positive? They went and attacked our last presidential candidate, a decorated Vietnam Veteran, on his service record - attacks based in no truth whatsoever for the express purpose of winning an election and then they say all's fair. But when I criticize one of them for outright falsehoods, I'm the big meanie . . . oh fuck off.
When a democrat does something scandalous in office it involves blowjobs and cumming on a dress. When a republican does something scandalous it involves treason, high crimes, and violations of international law. There is a difference, people. Nixon was responsible for a break-in, theft, and willful spying. Carter had a goofball beer drinker for a brother. Reagan negotiated an elaborate scheme of arms sales and foreign government interference as well as attempted assassinations all in violation of laws in every jurisdiction on earth. Clinton chased women who were not Hillary - and he got some of them. Then we have Bush who has so many impeachable offenses that no one can really keep track of them and yet we're supposed to be nice.
They're about to do the same thing again - - I mean putting up an incompetent, unintelligent candidate who'll do more evil shit to our country while the Republicans attack and tear down our candidate with every conceivable lie they can create. But their guy isn't above reproach, it's just that we're too nice and adult to go after him. He was a wealthy, privileged dickwad who only got through the naval academy because his dad was an admiral. He was an unbelievable screw-up and yet he was made a pilot, assigned on carriers - the absolute plum naval career and anyone who tells me that it was merit is a lying sack of shit. Want to vindicate all that? . . . have McCain release his full military records - like John Kerry did. We'll see, right? He won't do it because the records will damage him and he doesn't have to because Obama is the noble one who won't attack McCain. Obama believes he'll win on the issues and he'll inspire the people despite the lies thrown forth by the Republican attack machine. Maybe he's right, but I'm not going to be nice to those fucking conservatives.
When they stop lying, making shit up and violating standards of decency, law, and the Constitution they can request better treatment. Until then . . . fuck off.
The boy with glasses, screaming in a nasally whine, "I'm the undercover cop and you don't know I'm a cop until I bring out my gun like this." He made a gun with his fingers. "Then I'm going to arrest you all. I'm taking you downtown."
One of the other boys: "But I'm FBI and I'm undercover too."
"Yeah so am I," both the other boys hollered in unison.
The first kid: "No! I'm the only cop and you have to be the bad guys. That's the way it is. No FBI. Now I'm going to arrest you and you act surprised."
"This is a stupid game. I'm going to the playground to play Lava."
"No. You have to get arrested." That's when the boy with glasses tried to push the other boy to the ground. Maybe to cuff him or something.
Then things got a bit ugly. The boy with glasses ended up on the ground and the arrestee kicked him once. It wasn't too bad and it didn't look like it was even going to make a mark, but the glasses boy started crying really loud.
"I guess you should've called for backup."
And the other three boys headed to the playground.