I don't blog anymore. This is nothing against Blogdrive. They remain awesome. I don' blog at all, really. I know you hadn't figured that out on your own. The inspiration just isn't there. I'm trying to keep my rantspace to myself. I won't be deleting this bolog. There are a few posts I adored from author authors here that have disappeared by the wayside. I'll keep this up on the off chance that any of mine have made a similar impression.
There are a few social networking places I still frequent. If you are inclined, you can find me here:
Occasional Madness Tumblr, which will gradually transition into a blog/Tumblr hybrid. I spend most of my time here.
Facebook I will only friend you if I know you. You may have to remind me who you are. My memory is not what it used to be.
Echoes of Elaris Deviantart site, comprised of 99% BJD photography.
Twitter: Mostly retweets, Tumblr reblogs and inane comments. Not as active here as I used to be.
I guess it's about time I stopped Twittering and stopped by to update this place. A lot of things are going on and some of them might actually be interesting. There will also be a story about how I lost a tooth and gave myself a concussion.
Since I last blogged, I've done a fair bit of travel, seen some strange (and stranger) sights, and done some other stuff. We shall try to go from the beginning, or maybe not.
I work in real estate now. Have I mentioned that? I got a temp job for my current company back in August, and they hired me full time a few months later. I still have no idea how I lucked into this job, given that the economy here is having a nervous breakdown and people are defaulting on homes and businesses left and right. But it is a great job, it pays well, and I work with some cool people. I'm certainly not going to complain, but I will be amazed.
Gran had a triple bypass in the autumn of last year. She is recovering as well as can be expected and doesn't really want me to say more beyond that, as things I write here have a tendency of becoming family gossip. I will say that the goings-on leading up to said surgery could've equated to either of us filing a big fat hairy lawsuit against the hospital. I have ranted about these things to most of the people I know personally. If you want the story, call or email and I might give it to you.
Zombie and I spent Halloween in New Orleans, courtesy of a birthday present from her. I will admit Nola wasn't on the top of my list of places to visit in my lifetime, but I fell in love with the city as soon as we arrived. We stayed at the Le Pavillon hotel, and, if you are ever in new Orleans, you MUST do the same. It was walking distance from the French Quarter, the weather was gorgeous, and the food was to die for. To my surprise, I fell in love with the local cuisine.
Halloween in New Orleans is something you must experience. Aside from the whole creepy, haunted, vampire, voodoo vibe, there was an abundance of brilliant, elaborate costumes, and a true party atmosphere. My personal favorites were a quartet of cross-dressing geishas, a pair of "Sausage pizza" delivery boys and a rhinestone gladiator.
This is so going to be an annual pilgrimage, and we are already planning this October's voyage. We're hoping to journey beyond the French Quarter and Garden District and get to see more of the city this time.
I got to go home for Christmas, which almost didn't happen due to the freakish amounts of snow and power outages Virginia is continuing to have even as of this posting. Gran's power was knocked out for 6 days prior to my arrival, which left me worried sick since she was by herself and had just had major surgery. Somehow she persevered and didn't go to a hotel, and the power came on the night before I arrived. It was great to see everyone and catch up, and I wish I'd had more time to spend.
Christmas was, well, the kind of Christmas I wish I'd had for most of my life. Gran and I went to two great celebrations – Christmas Eve with Jen and her family, which was full of music and traditional carols and great good. Then Christmas day with Mike, Andi and their family, which was more good food and some truly great times. I'm so grateful to both of you for inviting us into your homes. Both Gran and I really enjoyed Christmas, for the first time in years.
Zombs and I went to the red carpet ceremony for the AVN Awards, just to say we'd been. And boy were we entertained. There were some truly epic trainwrecks on that red carpet, and we have photographic proof. Notable names from the event: Evan Stone, Tera Patrick and Mr. Ron Jeremy. Also saw a guy on the Strip who'd shut himself in a glass cubicle full of deadly snakes and what has to be a Holy Grail gathering of celebrity impersonators outside the Bellagio: The Blues Brothers, Jack Sparrow, Michael Jackson and Elvis. And, a few blocks away, dancing stormtroopers. I love this city because you never know what you're going to see next, but you can be certain it will entertain you.
In current news, I'm moving next month. I have found a bigger place that is much more convenient for my daily commute, and it's substantially less expensive than where I'm living now. I jumped at it, though I dread having to get everything from Point A to Point B, and I know the move is going to traumatize the cats (again.). I'll be giving up proximity to the Strip, but I can't even begin to look at that as a downside.
And, finally, I gave myself a pretty cute concussion over the weekend. I had to go to the dentist to have a tooth pulled (I have a freakish dental issue where 4 of my permanent teeth never existed, so the baby teeth are still in my mouth). Those who know me know I am a first-class wimp when it comes to these kinds of things, and this was a new dentist, to complicate matters. The procedure itself was painless, and as I thought I was actually going to get through the experience without any drama. Then, as I was standing at the counter to pay my bill, I started to feel a little lightheaded. I got as far as thinking I needed to sit down, then the next thing I knew, I was on the nice soft floor with three staff members around me in various stages of freaking out. Apparently, not only did I pass out, but I hit either my head or my elbow on my purse, which is made of metal. The purse has a huge dent in it and won't close properly now, and I have a dent in my forehead as well.
I spent most of Saturday being unconscious because I couldn't open my eyes without getting dizzy, and things still get queasy if I look at a computer screen for a book for too long. I'm getting ready to wrap up this entry for precisely this reason.
I'm going to try to start using this blog more regularly, but Twitter is still my preferred method of inane communication.
Creativity recap for while I've been away:
Writing done (an anything at all): 0
Paintings painted: 0
I'll post up some pictures of the various things I've blogged about here when I get home from work.
But enough about me for now. How are YOU?
There are a lot of more important things I could be updating about right now, but I'm not going to. Later, maybe, but not now.
This is just a friendly public service announcement from The Occasional. If you live in the US, do not use Regions Bank. Ever.
Why? You ask? Because in this time of economic crisis when people are missing payments and defaulting on loans, credit cards and everything else left and right, Regions will actually punish you for being a good customer.
Say what? No, really.
I managed to pay my car loan off a couple months early and got slapped with extra fees that totaled more than the final payment itself. When I called to ask why, it was the "penalty for paying early." Would they waive the fee? Of course not? Why? Because it was in the contract. I could go to the local branch and talk to a loan officer about it, which, believe me, I would, except for one small problem. There isn't a local branch within 100 miles of where I live. Believe me, I checked.
You have got to be kidding me. Shouldn't a bank be rolling over to kiss the feet of their customers who are actually fulfilling the terms of their loans and getting the money back to them? But instead, they are too busy negotiating with everyone else for money they're not going to see anyway, waiving payments and fees and everything else in hopes of getting a tiny portion of their money back on a loan they probably never should've made in the first place.
Companies, banks especially, listen up: if you want to keep your customers happy, don't penalize the ones who are actually being good customers. It just makes us angry, and makes us write up pissed off rants we post on the internet.
Later, when it's not a potential legal issue, I'll tell you a really good story about a brain tumor, 30 vials of the wrong blood and a torn aorta, among other epic fuckuppery.
Pieced together over 2 days of Tweets.
curtinparloe is saddened to learn that Twitter doesn't stop when I log off for a day. Aren't I important enough or something?
OcasionalMadnes @curtinparloe Twitter stops more often than you think. You just have to start coordinating your personal stoppags with it.
curtinparloe @OcasionalMadnes But updates used to synchronise around me, and they've stopped. I think I've hurt Twitter's feelings by calling it fat...
vegaszombie @OcasionalMadnes and @curtinparloe Screw Twitter. Where's my damn coconut monkey?
OcasionalMadnes @vegaszombie Twitter ate the monkey. @curtinparole called it fat after it did so. Twitter broke up with him.
vegaszombie @OcasionalMadnes Well, if Twitter broke up with @curtinparloe that means someone is available to woo me with a liquored up coconut monkey.
OcasionalMadnes @curtinparloe @vegaszombie I'll leave you two alone, then.
vegaszombie @OcasionalMadnes I don't care where the fucking monkey comes from. Was merely making an observation.
OcasionalMadnes @vegaszombie Am laughing too hard to make proper response. Boss is giving me suspicious glares.
vegaszombie @OcasionalMadnes Boss can bring monkey. No care! WANT MONKEY!
vegaszombie Obviously @curtinparloe has no desire to procure and present me with a coconut monkey filled with liquor. I am saddened.
curtinparloe @OcasionalMadnes @vegaszombie See? I don't log on for a day and I miss out on a seduction involving inebriated primates and palm seeds! Bah!
OcasionalMadnes @curtinparloe I am sure that if you secure previously-mentioned coconut monkey and some rum, the seduction of @vegaszombie can resume.
vegaszombie @OcasionalMadnes and @curtinparloe What. The. Fuck? Will someone be so kind as to draw me a map?
OcasionalMadnes @vegaszombie You have no memory of yesterday's conversation?
OcasionalMadnes RT @vegaszombie Well, if Twitter broke up with @curtinparloe that means someone is available to woo me with a liquored up coconut monkey.
OcasionalMadnes @vegaszombie: Consider your memory refreshed.
curtinparloe @OcasionalMadnes seducing @vegaszombie is definitely on my to-do list. Now, where to find a drunky monkey at this hour...
vegaszombie @OcasionalMadnes Sure. I was demanding alcohol in a coconut monkey. However, I don't recall anything regarding seduction.
OcasionalMadnes @vegaszombie "woo me" = guy-speak for "seduce"
vegaszombie @OcasionalMadnes That meant either Twitter OR @curtinparloe. I mean, I'm not picky after all.
OcasionalMadnes @vegaszombie and @curtinparole is trying lamenting missing out on said seduction. Dammit.
vegaszombie @OcasionalMadnes By all means, you can have the male, just leave me the monkey. See, not picky.
curtinparloe @OcasionalMadnes @vegaszombie Sadly I haven't the wit to woo...
OcasionalMadnes @vegaszombie I'm not even gonna respond to your monkey lust. @curtinparole you don't need wit, just booze.
vegaszombie @curtinparloe That's OK, just give me the monkey. All I want is the monkey!
vegaszombie @OcasionalMadnes But, but.... I hear tales that he is witty and has access to film equipment. *snickersnort*
OcasionalMadnes @curtinparole Ok, new plan. Leave @vegaszombie to her freaky monkey infatuation. Bring the booze to my place. ;)
vegaszombie @OcasionalMadnes Monkey MUST have booze! MUST! @curtinparloe Don't listen to her.
curtinparloe @OcasionalMadnes @vegaszombie Booze I can manage - I'm nt sure I should get too involved with some funky monkey junkie...
vegaszombie @curtinparloe Not funky... coconut. Get it right.
vegaszombie http://twitpic.com/gdamf - Behold.....
curtinparloe @OcasionalMadnes @vegaszombie I wasn't referring to the monkey as funky ;) I think I need a lie down in a darkened room after all this...
You will have to sign up to read my updates, because I really dislike gosspiy little snots who like to start drama in my life. So leave me a note here if you sign up to follow me and don't have an ID I will easily recognize.
I will return to this blog. Eventually. Maybe. But it will be a while.
P.S.Tardasaurus Rex and my little Space Cadet (otherwise known as Arthur and Rabbit) also have Twitter. You can follow the feline antics at http://twitter.com/tardyandcadet. They are equal-opportunity attention whores, so you don't have to have an account to follow them.
You know your community's security is bad when the security guard's car get stolen from the parking lot while he's on duty.
There is, by the way, only one way in to or out of where I live, and the guard's little shed is right smack in the middle of the "in" and "out" gates.
Also: Still unemployed. Money would be such a good thing right about now.
Also: Found a sweet potential new apartment that both Zombs and I love, so we are applying for it.
Also: Going to Flagstaff, AZ this weekend for a Celtic festival. Will get to see the Hoover Damn *and* travel Route 66. Am very much praying it does not turn out like our trip to the Twilight Zone (aka Primm).
Also: Have sort of adopted a cat. His name is Arnold. I stole him from Zombie's building, where someone dumped him off. I would fully adopt Arnold if he would let me, but every time he comes into my apartment, he throws a claustrophobic hissing fit and he and Rabbit end up hissing and making increasingly strange, dog-like noises at each other.
Also: Vitamin B12 and I do not get along. It screws up my dreams and has other, more bizarre, side effects.
By Sarah Monette
The Book of Lies
By Brad Meltzer
From Dead to Worse (Southern Vampire Mysteries, No. 8)
By Charlaine Harris
Dust and Shadow: An Account of the Ripper Killings by Dr. John H. Watson
By Lyndsay Faye
By Rob Thomas
The Philanthropist [Blu-ray]
Staring James Purefoy
*This is the part of the entry where we skip over a super-awesome OMG I can't believe I just saw Live poolside concert at The Palazzo concert, had an emergency trip back to Virginia to put my puppy of 16 years to sleep, hang out with old friends, torment the Warlord, and visit the Twilight Zone (also known as Primm, NV) to see Bill Engvall.*
Which is to say, stuff has happened, but I just don't feel like writing about it. I will try to be better about more timely updates in the future.
Also, my cats have Twitter.
If you're ever in Vegas you really should go see Blue Man Group. Zombs and I just got back from it, courtesy of some free show tickets, 4th row center, just feet from the stage. It was a stunning audio, visual and comedic treat, and an hour and a half of pure awesomeness.
Since I can't find a clip of the damn thing I want to post -- a neon light-show ode to truck stops and the Old West -- make do with this one instead.