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Showing posts from August, 2020

Monday 8/31/2020

Only hours of August 2020 remain and what a roller coaster it has been. 

Luckily, I can't remember most of those ups and downs unless I squint my brain REALLY hard and I'm not going to do that. I'm sure every month is full of the same. No month is unique.

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I finished re-reading week 4 of The Artist's Way tonight and it really made me feel bad about stopping the morning pages a few days ago so I could take some time off of writing at the end of the month before bad fiction month begins tomorrow. Maybe I do need to be writing the pages each morning and then the fiction some time later in the day. I think the morning pages (or my laptop version of them) do help me stay on track creatively and without them I sort of coast.

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It was another rainy, gloomy, ugly day today and I'm glad for the cooler temperatures and the fact that the AC doesn't have to be on all day but I know there are plenty of rainy, gloomy, ugly days to come so it would be nice to have a few more bright ones before we get to fall/winter. 

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I miss having a Tumblr in the fall because there are so many great fall and winter Tumblr's to reblog but then spring comes and it turns into a to do and that always sucks the life out of it for me.

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I finally cleaned up my Twitter today and wondered why I was seeing tweets but not following a lot of people and then remembered my experiment with Twitter lists at the start of the summer. Now I am down to just a few lists and everyone is back to being followed and on the main feed. I also cleared out all of my muted words and phrases. I'm sure I missed a lot over the last year or so because I had a lot of words and phrases on that list!

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I wonder what excitement is ahead for us in September. I am ready for the new month. I am not ready for chilly days yet but I am ready to turn that calendar page.

Sunday 8.30.2020

The explanation

The original idea I had when I started using the weblog label here last December was to make weblog posts dated posts and to focus more on what happened on the particular day I was writing and to make this into more of a journal than a place to come whenever I had an idea, starting a post in the morning and leaving it in draft most of the day, adding whatever came to mind or whatever links I found interesting during the day until I published the post in the evening.

I'm not 100% of the way there yet but I decided that I would shift more into that direction in September but a couple of days ago I thought, why wait? Do it now. Let's see where this goes.

Is blogging dead or is blogging the way we once knew it dead and now it's time to do something a little different? I don't know for sure but here is my little different and we'll see how far it goes.

The weblog for August 30th (back to our regularly scheduled programming)

I have an online, virtual, cyber wedding to attend tonight and I have decorated the wall behind me so that I will appear as festive as possible for the function. It's my first ever online, virtual, cyber wedding and I'm hoping all future weddings will be like this. Thanks, Coronavirus!

The after-hurricane remnants weather has remained somewhat unsettled with rain early this morning and more storms on the way for this evening. I'm glad I got out in the humidity and mowed last Thursday. Maybe it will be cooler and drier at the end of the week when I have to mow again.

September is almost here. Exciting!

A poem: John Skoyles - The End of August

Saturday 8/29/2020

I did not want to get up this morning. So tired. What a long and trying week it has been. But we still had three flocks to put out (I think I have discussed flocks on the podcast. If not, let me know. I just noticed I wrote about flocking a few posts back right here.) and then we went to Starbucks for a Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew with four Splendas. It was, apologies to Maxwell House, good to the last drop.


Next we went off to Dollar Tree where I found The Secret History of Twin Peaks for $1 which seems insane for me for a perfect copy of such a nice book.

Now we are home and I am about to start editing the September episodes of In Your Earholes before we go pick up our Walmart order and then, hopefully, settle in for a quiet night back at the house. 

All Saturdays should be like this. 

Friday 8/28/2020

I am back in the home office awaiting the remnants of Hurricane Laura. I watched live video of the storms moving through Nashville nearly an hour ago and although the sky is dark and ominous, nothing is happening here just yet. It's a very slow mover.

I have finished my NaNoWriMo August project which was a continuation of last month's goal to write a little each day in the form of morning pages/daily journal entries. I stopped on Wednesday as I decided to take the rest of the month off in order to start fresh on September 1st with a new project, this time focusing on writing a little fiction each day in order to prep for November NaNoWriMo. I'm hoping to get back to writing here on a regular basis now that my private writing project is over. 

I'm hoping for a weekend of rest and reading and general doing nothing. I say that every weekend and then it doesn't happen so I hesitate to even type out these words. Maybe I could sneak in some rest if I am very stealthy about it.

I forgot to add a title to this one!

What a week it has been!

Most of it was covered in the 505th episode of the podcast so I won't rehash all of that. My wife's ankle is steadily improving from her fall while putting out band flamingos in some stranger's yard. Yes, band flamingos are a thing, at least here.

Last night was the first football game of the season, a season in which we will not be allowed to travel to away games. So, things are a bit different this year. But not different is the rain which seems to have been following us around like a curse for the last three years. Last night was a soggy mess and the rain let up just a bit after the game ended. 

Considering how much rain we had and how many new rules are in place due to Coronavirus, I think it all went as well as it could. So many spectators took off their masks though. I was shocked by how many people were walking around with no mask on. I guess they paid for their ticket and got their temperature checks with the mask on and then pulled them off inside the gate. So, I expect the numbers to start rising again in about, oh, I don't know, two weeks.

I had my mask on all night but that only protects others and not me so I am going to be mega peeved if I get something. MEGA PEEVED.

Now I slowly decompress and go back to the regular routine for three weeks since next week's game is cancelled (the other team is not playing) and the week after that is an away game we were not allowed to travel to. That means plenty of time for reading and general chilling out around the house.

WOW! Stopping with the word house in the preceding sentence, I wrote exactly 1000 words today. So I am writing a few extra words so I don't log 1000 on NaNoWriMo and people go, uh huh, 1000 exactly, right.

Writing at the park

**Not edited for typos or fragments**

8/15/2020

Don Fox Park

12:07pm central time 

So, today’s “entry” is going on the blog also. I haven’t shared anything over there in a little bit so I might as well do something – a virtual wave, of sorts. And today is a special day as it is the first day I am out of the house writing in a long, long time. Today I am coming to you from the bench swing in our local park where people are walking the walking track by me and I am not too far from the traffic going by on the bypass. 


It’s a little warmer than I expected it would be and the sun peaked out almost immediately as I started typing which has made things a bit hotter and brighter than I was expecting. I will need to sniff out a better shaded seat for the next time I do this. I think there used to be more shade here at one point but we’ve had plenty of storms over the last few years and had quite a bit of tree damage over here.


I could also bring a blanket and sit under a tree in the middle of the circle but it’s a bit too wet for that today after all of the rain we had yesterday.

Someone just walked past me reading. I don’t know how they read and walk the track at the same time like that. I am sure it is an intellectually healthy thing to do but it seems like a tad distracting. I can see listening to music while I walk but I want to be able to see not only where I am walking but also the scenery around me when I am walking.

Today also marks the first time I have been out with the new-to-me writing laptop bag, the bag that made me realize I am done with the bag search and able to move to just three bags, as I discussed on the most recent episode of the podcast. That’s right – all of the extra bags are in storage to be dispersed at a later date and I am down to three backpacks:

  •         My work backpack (SwissGear – had it for years)
  •          My big personal laptop backpack (also SwissGear – just ordered it off eBay and it will arrive next week)
  •          My writing laptop backpack (High Sierra Everyday Backpack in bright green and gray and visible in the picture attached to this entry)

Of course, I still have my coronabag for when I leave the house and don’t need to take a laptop with me. That is an OutdoorMaster Sling Bag from Amazon that I have had for several years.

So, that’s four bags. Having four of anything still feels excessive but each of these has stuff in them and serves a unique purpose.

This High Sierra bag I got because it fits the 13.3 inch laptop perfectly, has a pocket for my Kindle and two nice sized water bottle pockets. It’s not bulky or heavy. And most of all, I love the color. It’s not plain like most backpacks. It’s a little loud. 

The green color is florescent in real life. Very bright. Almost obnoxious. It’s exactly what I wanted. I want something a bit, I don’t know, irregular? Unexpected? Not the typical bag for an almost 47 year old man? Anyway, it works for me. I am quite happy with it.

Speaking of being almost 47, I wore a baseball cap yesterday and noticed in the mirror that only gray/almost white hair was visible sticking out of the hat over my ears. I looked about 10 years older wearing the hat since all of the remaining brown hair (which gets fewer and fewer) was hidden. Not that I care about these things but it was kind of surprising.

That new lap desk I bought with the legs would have been perfect for this bench. Writing using a real lap desk that just sits on my lap is a total pain. I keep shifting my legs because my feet are falling asleep.

I think I’m going to have to walk the walking lap at least one time when I am done to work out the stiffness from sitting here like this.

So, I write like this every day now. My goal is 700 words (just passed 727) and I keep it in a never ending Word document typically (I am writing this one in its own document) and when I am done I put my word count out on NaNoWriMo where I have an August writing project to keep myself accountable and I add my count on the Los Angeles NaNoWriMo Discord where I have been welcomed in by some great people willing to answer my questions and get me up and going with my own region by November and really I hope to have things going much sooner than that, maybe even in the next few weeks.

The trouble with having an only 700 word goal is that I want to keep writing some days and I only have so much life to share. There is not much interesting happening here that justifies daily huge documents. For example, my wife went through the kids bathroom this morning and we tossed a lot of old, unneeded stuff. After that, I took some of the newer meds and stuff we found and put it with our stuff and found a tube of Walmart-branded Benadryl cream that expired in 2010. I was tempted to keep it. Does it really ruin? But I have newer tubes and who wants to rub cream on an itchy mosquito bite expecting relief and get none because the ingredient became inactive when Obama was president?

That’s was this morning’s real excitement aside from me having to go to Walmart because our pickup order got messed up. There was an app problem, at least on our end, this week and items I put on the list disappeared plus we had multiple items they either left out of the order or gave us the wrong size or type of. It was our first real pickup goof up aside from when they left the Charmin out two weeks in a row and still charged us for it. Leaving out my Charmin is a NO NO. I need my Mr. Whipple.

Pickup is convenient and wonderful when it works. I had to go through Walmart in person (yuk!) and get all of the stuff we needed while wearing that hot mask which makes me sweat and look like I have a Corona-fever. People do get out of your way when you look like that so I guess that’s a good thing. I did not wear my hat this morning because I wanted to look 10 years younger than I did yesterday.

I think that’s about it. I am over 1,000 words now and at some point later today I will upload this and the pictures I took for your reading pleasure. I will also get on the sites and register my huge writing accomplishment. LOL.

At some point, I need to think about fiction and I have a ton of real-life stories that sound like fiction so maybe I can morph some of those into a tapestry of NaNoWriMo –worthy storytelling. We shall see.

12:37pm

P.S. After I finished writing my 1,225 words (my goal was 700), I put the laptop in the car and walked two miles. Right as I closed the door getting back in the car, it started raining a bit. Good timing!

Checking in

It's been a little bit over a week since I checked in here. The reason is I am writing offline each day this month as opposed to sharing what I am writing each day. It's pretty much still the same stuff except a bit more unfiltered (just a very little bit, actually) since I am not writing for an audience. I am just about as boring privately as I am in public so you are missing out on nothing at all.

I think I said somewhere, maybe on the podcast, that I would share interesting shareable tidbits over here but nothing has jumped out at me as interesting so I guess it is not going to happen.

The good news is I finally got into another book! After so many starts and stops over the last couple of months, I am reading and enjoying Tenth of December by George Saunders. It was recommended by Phoebe Bridgers on Vulture.com and since we had read and liked a couple of the same books, I gave it a shot and I'm glad I did. Good stuff.

I also got a lap desk for the bed or the couch that I am really enjoying. It's got a ton of room on it and is very adjustable and will be great for writing on the writing laptop as I am doing now sitting here in the bed listening to Jazz24 on my Amazon Echo Dot. The Dot has a surprisingly great sound and I keep it right by the bed so Jeff Bezos can hear me snore or fart whenever he wants.

Over on my writing desk, I am using the Google Nest Mini to listen to podcasts via Bluetooth from my iPad and it works great. A tap in the middle of the speaker pauses it if I get a call or something. If you missed it, my iPod Touch exploded so yeah, no more iPod Touch. It didn't explode into flame. It just blew apart because the battery expanded and finally popped the case and the case the iPod Touch was in. POW!

I've been listening to a little shortwave again and also some late night AM radio. I don't wake up in the middle of the night now unless the dogs wake me up but if they do, I take the opportunity to spend some time on the deck or in the kitchen with my AM radio. I was rewarded the other night when I turned on WGN and George Wendt was on there being interviewed. NORM!

Other than all of this, things are pretty much the same. Coronavirus is causing all sorts of insanity and we're still not 100% sure how school will turn out so that means there is uncertainty about band and football but it's all OK. We'll get through it. We'll slap on our masks and do what we can. 

Hope you are well, honored reader of the blog!


August 2nd miscellanea

Highlights from the last 24 hours:
  • Called out Sonic over their lousy app and they couldn't care less.
  • It rained like crazy.
  • I deleted my micro.blog account and the Wordpress account I had set up to use with it.
  • I updated my special.fish profile again although I think my days left there are numbered.
  • I am trying to prepare myself mentally for returning to work after vacation tomorrow knowing I have no days off in August. 
I think August is going to involve a lot of ondoing things I did over the last few months, like diving in and trying micro.blog. I gave it a good try and realized I have no interest in it. Beyond the little design issues I don't like, there is a lot of technical talk in the feeds that I don't find interesting and most involve micro.blog itself.

I also cleaned up the blogs I read and am down to a very few. 

One good thing about returning to work tomorrow will be getting back into a routine. 

Welcome to August

The excitement of a new month is in the air here in Armpit. 



I am back after a few days off post-Camp NaNoWriMo which, at least for me, was a good exercise. It kept me writing even a bit beyond that 20,000 word writing goal I had set for myself.

Today also marks the winding down of my vacation and I have very little to show for it. I was going to read a lot. Nope, haven't done it. I was going to rest more. Well, I'm up at 5:54AM on Saturday writing this. I did get the garage cleaned up a bit and I finished digitizing the round of videotapes I was working on. I mowed during a driving rainstorm. 

I am not sure how hard I'm going to work on documenting the upcoming month here. I like the idea of coming by and posting little updates here and there but my 1000+ word missives are probably not going to happen. Also, special.fish is again feeling quite pointless and no amount of stubbornness is going to keep me going over there much longer.