Thursday, October 30, 2008

Busy Week

Elvis sez: "DOODE - U seen my other leg?"

Been a crazy-fast week here at the Circle-D Ranch. Halloween prep, school and homework, chores, prep for the movie-in next weekend, prep for the Celtic New Year party on Saturday, work assignments, maintaining some form of social profile (even in its currently reduced state), two family birthdays and at least one close friend's birthday. Crazy, I tells ya.

This weekend being my New Year, I'm making a resolution, and it's pretty much reinforcing my recent policies in blogging. It has really occurred to me lately that in the process of complaining about certain aspects of my relationship with Tyler, I'm doing us both a disservice. Although he has a blog and could theoretically defend himself, I should be far more sensitive to how I portray my son on a public forum read by hundreds of people every month. It's not fair to paint the one-sided picture I've painted in the past, either to him or to myself. Every family dynamic is different, and we're in the midst of very delicate work - stuff that really doesn't belong on a public blog. Therefore, I commit to keeping to the most basic facts and restraining from any subjective (or at least subjectively negative) portrayals of my kids. It is, after all, the way I'd want to be treated. Love you, T.

So last night Kayleigh and I had leftovers for dinner and I watched the Obama Show while she carved her pumpkin - completely by herself! Awesome anime face. After she cleaned up the pumpkin guts, she washed a bunch of the seeds, spread them on a cookie sheet, sprinkled salt and garlic powder, and roasted them in the oven. All I did was give instruction - she did all the work and all the clean up. And the roasted seeds - yum!

Kayleigh with her Willow-red hair

Tyler spent the night at Gavin's and got dropped at school early today. My neighbor/producer Darlene dropped off coffee for me this morning as a thank-you for letting one of the kids in her at-risk program interview me about being a professional artist yesterday. I love inspiring kids to consider a career in the arts. Or just inspiring them to think for themselves and follow their bliss - one of the biggest reasons I'm researching the unschooling experience for T (and I'm halfway through the first book, Marcia - thanks!).

Gotta finish up here. Taking Katherine to lunch for her birthday. Then I have to go pick up my video projector from the shop - it's finally fixed! Just in time to throw silent horror films on the screen Saturday night! There's a meeting at K's school tonight for the music program and their trip to Idaho. I have an early dentist appointment in Ballard tomorrow, and will hopefully get some answers on the whole left jaw pain and chronic ear infection thing.

Tomorrow is Samhain (sah-wen, from the Irish), when the Veil is lowest. I fully expect a check in from loved ones passed. [tangent: last night, Ghost Hunters showed investigations in Sedro-Woolley and the Seattle Underground. Pretty cool!] I'll be taking K trick-or-treating, and T will be handing out candy in his ninja costume. Raechelle will have her choice of duties. Might be good for her to bond a bit with Tyler, or it could be cool for her to scope out some of the neighborhoods in West Seattle as we troll for candy. I promise to take lots of pics of the festivities on both Friday and Saturday, but there may not be a recap until Monday.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Happy Birthday, Gavin!

Big shout-out to my "little" brother (who is taller than me by a full inch). He has been a real life saver for me, especially in the past couple years of dealing with kid issues and family therapy. He and his wife Michelle have been friggin' knights in shining armor when I have needed last-minute childcare or a shoulder to cry on, and they include both of my kids in recreational activities just because they like 'em.

Raechelle and I took them to dinner a few months ago as a thank-you for making it possible for us to date. I think we owe 'em another dinner by now.

Anyway, it's hard to describe the bond I share with Gavin, as it was forged in a lot of early family upheaval and trauma. It sort of goes beyond the average sibling connection - if there is indeed such a thing as an "average" sibling connection. We are perhaps closer in spirit (and far less competitive) because of the eight-year age gap than if we'd been closer in age. I am proud that he's taken up the family business and become an educator. The public school system needs more teachers of his caliber (and they need to be paid properly). I am thankful he and Michelle chose to stay in West Seattle to be close to us after Sam died. I am honored to have him as a brother.

Happy Birthday, Gavin. Love you, bro.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Quickie for Tuesday

Had a massage yesterday. Good times. Finally got Tyler to go with me to Target and pick out some clothes he'll wear. Had a good evening with the kids and an episode of Buffy.

Had a long, hot shower to relax at bedtime, slept right through to my alarm at 6:30 this morning. Ran errands, took TBGE to lunch, took Tyler to his therapist, took Kayleigh on a Goodwill run (dropping off, not accumulating). Now all the stuff from the carport that was on my front porch is gone. Result!

We dropped by the deli on the way home, so it'll be dinner and more Buffy tonight. That Angel can be a real bastard when he doesn't have a soul. And stop slouching, ya stoopid vampire!

I'm done driving for the day, thanks. My feet hurt. And my right bicep has been in spasm for the past 48 hours - pretty annoying. Waaaaa, cry, bitch, whine, moan. Okay, I'm done. Delicious deli food is calling my tummy to its nefarious service.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Weekend Update

Friday night was some Simpsons Halloween hilarity, followed by Tim Burton's Sleepy Hollow. Mmmmm. Halloweeny.

So the thing about not planning anything social all weekend means you actually get a lot more done. This weekend, that included cleaning and shoveling out my carport to the extent that Ruby now has a covered place to park.

We did such an admittedly excellent job on the carport that when Kayleigh went to Gavin's for their Star Wars RPG (Tyler had already spent the night there), I took the Little Woman (hey, I can say that - she's teeny) to dinner at Cactus on Alki. And who should be hostessing at the front, but Alyssa - my Ordinary Angels hair & makeup gal (and erstwhile stagehand).

After a yummy dinner, we headed back to the house and spent about an hour and a half practicing some songs for an acoustic set. The songs we worked on were all covers, but we have originals stashed away which will be surfacing at some point. It was good to sit down and work the tunes together. That was the original premise for our first meeting, and we finally did it... five months later (happy five month anniversary, by the way).

Then we retired with a bottle of wine to watch Kinky Boots, a funny little film about a doomed shoe factory and a line of boots for big, burly drag queens. And it has The Operative from Serenity in the transvestite lead.

Much clinging and cuddling this weekend. It was nice. Gavin brought the kids home about 11PM, and K watched the first part of SNL with us, then it was crash time.

Sunday was all about the Halloween shopping (after a birthday coffee chat with Ron). We spent several hours at Southcenter. Fortunately most of what we needed was in a couple of the side malls away from the main shopping center. Whew.

Came home with last-minute costume bits and decorations for Saturday, some pumpkins to carve and some hair color for the girls. Kayleigh went with a strawberry red for her Willow persona, while Raechelle went dark blood red to highlight her brunette tresses. They both look fantastic.

Raechelle cooked up some ravioli and sauce, and Tyler handled the garlic bread (yummy!). We all sat down and had dinner together, followed by a couple Buffy episodes, and bedtime.

It was a good, productive, calm and nurturing weekend, after a week of stress in T-Rae Land. I daresay neither one of us wanted it to be over. I'm keeping a vigilant eye on the calendar to make sure neither one of us overbooks for the next couple weeks. We both need to be good to ourselves and allow plenty of calm alone time in our respective spaces before the move.

We now return you to your week, already in progress.

Friday, October 24, 2008

I Can See Russia...

This is too good not to share...

Can I Get An "AMEN!"

Second good night's sleep in a row. I'm on the upswing. YEAH baby!

Watched The Notebook last night with my daughter. Not a film I'd thought to seek out on original release, much less enjoy as much as I did. Thank you, Netflix. I found the story compelling, even if I did figure out the connection in the first act. Still, despite the heartbreakingly familiar themes and final scene (which was incredibly hard for me to watch), it's a beautifully made and engaging film. Kayleigh absolutely LOVED it.

Received some income from my long-neglected game company, so I'm feeling a bit better about things going into the winter season.

I've got Chris Isaak blaring on the playlist, I've got paychecks in the bank, it's Friday, I have no social plans this weekend (except for Trish & Dan coming over for movies), and the girl is here. Life is good.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Nobody Knows

Last post today, I swear.

Gigi sent me a link to the teaser for Nobody Knows, the project we were working on with her for some time earlier this year. When Dan & I found ourselves with too many projects and had to walk away, she took the project to LA with her (with our blessing and best wishes). I don't know how much of my script is being used, but the opening shot is straight off page one. I hope she finishes it.

Here's the clip:

This is Worth a "Me Too..."

Stephen Rader pointed out a new promotions campaign at Barney's in Chicago. Really?? Someone thought this was a good idea?

How about THIS idea for the marketing genius who came up with it: you're FIRED.

Get 'Er Done!

I am really ready for the week to be over. Not just be over, but die an agonizing death and explode into a fine pink mist.

I did sleep much better last night. Hit the pillow at 10:45, awoke at 6:30 (no late-night wake-ups!). Took Kayleigh to school, came home, crashed out from 7:30 to 9AM. Awoke to the chime of my doorbell. Decided not to play along, as at that hour it's a salesman of some kind: political, religious or manual labor. Well I've already voted, I already have a close, personal relationship with God, and I have no use for your non-licensed, non-bonded ass using power tools and ladders and gardening implements in my yard, thanks.

Had a shower. Paid some bills. Took Tyler to school. Brought sushi to Raechelle at work. Went to Display & Costume for some last-minute costume bits (look at me being all "last-minute" a full week before the party). Saw an ex at D&C. Strange, only because it was unexpected - we didn't even acknowledge each other. Just went on our respective Halloween shopping ways. As it should be.

Came home to find that yes, it had been a religion salesperson. There was a door flier courtesy of the JWs. Hallelujah, I missed 'em.

I have a truck reserved for the dump run on Saturday. Look at me being proactive. Now if I could just muster the energy to get some words out of the lock-box in my head and into the actual Ordinary Angels pilot script, things would be better.

We canceled the OA script meeting tonight. There's a lot of sickness, exhaustion and just plain overbooking going on in our little crowd. I'm so having a beer tonight. And I'm gonna try on my costume to make sure everything is good. And I'm making a promise to be extra kind to myself for the next two weeks. I've been hyperfocused on everybody else's needs (old programming and the natural parental state), that I've really neglected my own emotional beast.

Who knows? I might even get a soak in the jet tub or even (gasp!) get to sleep early.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Sick Day

Bob Schneider was great. And what was even better was seeing Raechelle enjoy herself.

But due to several factors, I got zero sleep last night. Except for a weird dream where we were at the Bob show, but it was in this big indoor amphitheater which also sold CDs and giant, billboard-sized posters. Two long, semicircular stairways led from the seating below up to the exit. But some folks were climbing up the vertical poster display "slots" which ran up the back wall. Apparently it was a more direct route to the exit. And the edges of the glass slot fronts were strong enough to support one's weight as long as one was very careful not to apply lateral pressure. Some folks made it halfway and gave up. There were sheared off edges that indicated some had fallen. But Raechelle and I climbed carefully and silently, and we made it to the exit.

Anyway, aside from that, I got no sleep. Was dragging so much I couldn't even get the kids up for school, and called an executive sick day. I was supposed to sit on a Gilda's panel tonight, but just can't manage the energy. Which is probably a big relief for the girl, as she's booked every night this week, which only adds to the pre-move stress. So I suggested she stay in tonight and relax. Nothing would please me more than to see her for dinner and share some hugs and smooches, but I'd much rather wait and see her in a couple days if it means she's sane and happy to see me too.

That's love, man!

Took Tyler to his dentist appointment to get a couple fillings and some sealants, but that's all I could muster before returning home to the sofa. I'll chat with Rae tonight on the phone and we'll make a plan to not make any plans this weekend. Except organizing.

Hopefully I'll have more energy tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

This Sucks.

As much as I love the work of Don Cheadle, what the hell was Marvel Studios thinking replacing Terence Howard in the new Iron Man sequel (and apparently not bothering to tell Howard)?

I don't get that mentality at all. Howard defined Rhodey to millions of moviegoers. What's the problem there? Surely Cheadle wasn't cheaper to sign...

Story here.

The Excitement is Palpable

Looking forward to seeing this guy at this place tonight.


I know I had something else written here, but I'm removing the weighty, deep aspects - as per agreement with the girl. Instead, I really just want to quote my fellow Scot, Alexi Murdoch, as he sings so eloquently:

And all the suffering that you've witnessed
And the hand prints on the wall
They remind you how it's endless
How endlessly you fall

And the answer that you're seeking
For the question that you found
Drives you further to confusion
As you lose your sense of ground

So don't forget to breathe
Don't forget to breathe
Your whole life is here
No eleventh hour reprieve
So don't forget to breathe

Keep your head above water
But don't forget to breathe

Monday, October 20, 2008

Another Weekend

Yes, another weekend has come and gone, and although born in angst, it quickly righted itself and became a closely bonding experience. We're both getting to the point of being able to keep our flight impulse at bay when having an argument - and I think it's mostly due to the fact that it feels like we've been together longer than 5 months. We've both invested so much in a relatively short period of time, it puts us in the perspective of "well, let's not be hasty and dump it all - this is worth sorting out..." After all, one of the necessary skills in any successful relationship is learning how to argue constructively.

To recap, Friday night was It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown! and The Prophecy (wherein it was suggested that Eric Stoltz might play me in the Cameron Crowe/Nora Ephron movie of our relationship). Trish and Dan joined us, and for the first time, Shaun made an appearance at the festivities. We made him welcome, and hopefully he'll come hang with us again.

Then the aforementioned tiff occurred, and enough of a peace was forged that nobody went to sleep angry... however:

I awoke at 2AM, drifted in and out of consciousness, and was clobbered by an intense migraine at 3:30 in the bloody AM. Came upstairs to medicate and try to let Raechelle get some sleep without me groaning and muttering expletives. Finally achieved a state of relative equilibrium and trundled downstairs to get back in my own bed about an hour before we had to get up and take Ruby to the dealership for some basic maintenance.

I was not in good shape Saturday.

Things from the previous night were already on the mend, however, so I didn't have to shoulder the worry of an angry girlfriend on top of a killer migraine, no sleep and an empty stomach. We dropped Ruby at the dealership and got a loaner. I was not aware that Hyundai made anything that ginormous. I think it's their equivalent of the Kia Sorento. Anyway, we got brunch at Shari's, and I felt much better. We walked to JoAnn fabrics and got some Halloween stuff. A quick trip to Home Depot for a flat-nosed shovel, an additional clothes rod for the master closet, and an outdoor push broom, and then back to the dealership to rescue Ruby.

We had a quick spot o' tea with Don, Marcia and Ben, Raechelle's ex-family-in-sin. Ben is homeschooled/unschooled, and is an amazing kid of Tyler's age. We picked their brains on the homeschooling/unschooling thing, and a huge new world opened up for me as a parent. We borrowed some books on the subject and are doing some research. Nevertheless, by this point in the afternoon, I was hitting a wall and needed to crash out for awhile. We came home, I turned on some random college football game and promptly fell asleep for an hour and a half.

Other than a trip to SCT for a very funny and well-done production of Night of the Living Dead, it was a quiet night. We stayed in, had leftovers and a little wine, and watched a whole disc of Buffy. With the kids. There may have been popcorn involved as well. It was madness. Then we went to bed, caught the first half hour of SNL, and crashed until after 9AM. Buh?? How is this possible, TD? you may ask. And yeah - I know, right? But it's true!

Sunday consisted of cleaning, then an expedition to Red Light on Broadway and the giant Goodwill on Dearborn. Which is where we happened to find a 4-drawer metal filing cabinet for the office (which usually retail for $200+) for $15. And here is where I must tell a little story...

I never find anything to wear at Goodwill, because I'm 6'4" tall and shuffle around on a pair of size 13 feet. So when we walked into the joint and were greeted with a couple racks of leather jackets, my browsing was completely in the realm of, "Gee, what to they have for everyone in the world but ME?". So imagine my surprise when I found this:

A 19th century style black suede "frock coat". Size: XL. Great condition. Easily $300 new. My price: $30. Gotta love Goodwill. The coat, combined with the black ruffle shirt, purple vest and black boots from Red Light (along with some snug trousers and a couple long canine tooth appliances), will give me a nice Byronic vampire persona for Halloween. Very vampire-pimp (or "vimp") if you will. And Raechelle got herself a doozy of a red & black cancan dress that can do double-duty as a pirate wench ensemble when needed - but for Halloween, she's my #1 vampire-ho. Love it! Tyler has said he's going to be a ninja. I don't know if that means he's going to do a black costume, or just disappear all night. And Kayleigh is going as the character Willow from Buffy The Vampire Slayer.

Anyway, once we were back, I muscled in the file cabinet by myself, which was stupid and which Raechelle lectured me about. Fortunately I didn't pull, pop, strain or otherwise burst anything. Then Doug and Ann came over for the Hawks game, and we ate pizza and cried in our Thomas Kemper root beer as the Buccs played circles around the clueless Seahawks. I blame the new training facility. The players have descibed it as "spa-like". I think it's made 'em soft. That and an ungodly number of injuries this season.

We headed off to bed to fold laundry and get kids tucked in, and had a good night's sleep for Monday. It's a new week, and it's jam-packed with social obligations. And that is why we had to un-schedule some stuff for this upcoming weekend. We need to seriously prep the house for Rae's move in, which is coming up in three weeks. And the weekend after this one is our Celtic New Year party (wherein we wear our vamp regalia). So every spare moment is going to be Rae packing her apartment and me making room here.

And although I'm just a tad scared of the whole move-in thing, I've been getting plenty of positive reinforcement from the Universe, and I say bring it.

Friday, October 17, 2008


I wonder how many posts I've used that title for. Or will use it for in the future.

The Pacific Northwest autumn is upon us, and with it the dark cloud of thinking-too-much. It's a time for going inside (literally and figuratively), a time for self examination. Dealing with a lot on my plate, and it's not just the financial crisis and watching my retirement shrink before my eyes. It's not just staring at the Hellmouth that is my kitchen. It's not just missing those really close connections I once had. It's also the stress of raising a high-schooler and middle-schooler, the stress of re-learning how to share my home after having been a lone alpha for 3+ years (and everything that is building toward)...

[addendum] And the projector is in the shop and won't be done until after the weekend. This is my "grrr" face. >:-( [/addendum]

There's more, but that's all I'm gonna share for now.

Meeting my sister for lunch today. That'll be a bright spot. Sorry not so chipper.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

My Dad, My Past

I was sorting through terabytes of data on several external hard drives today, and ran across a few things. The first was a collection of videos from the Black Pelican Halloween theme mystery parties we hosted in the late '80s and early '90s. I was shocked at how different I was back then. Not just different looking, but different in attitude and bearing. I was naive and self-absorbed, perhaps normally so for an artist in his twenties, happily engaged/married without the responsibility of children, and able to drink with impunity. We were a happy little incestuous clan, intellectuals and artists and performers. Much like Lord Byron and his entourage in the early 1800s, only without the rock-star prestige and social scandal.

The second was my dad's memorial video I made for him shortly after his death. My copy of the DVD burned in the fire, and I didn't know that the raw video files survived. I watched until it was too painful, and was again struck by how much Tyler looks like him (especially now, at 14). It left me feeling very melancholy and wanting to talk to my pop, especially in light of all the wonderful things going on in my life.

Wiley's New Home

Apparently Wiley now has the best pack in the world. Tory just emailed to let me know he'd had a couple rough nights as he adjusted to the new living situation, but that he was now doing well and learning the ropes. I have to admit I got a little choked up when I saw the picture she sent of the three boys.

From left to right: Wiley, Dash & Murphy.

What a handsome addition to their clan. Good boy.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Not Immune

So it appears I'm not immune to the same cold feet the girl has been describing. For the past several days, I've been stressing in the back of my mind, wondering "is this The One?", "is this the right time?", "is it what I want?", and always, "if it doesn't work out, will my kids ever forgive me?"

She called last night, a pretty mushy phone conversation, and I expressed what I'd been feeling. And what do you know? Far from being a deal-breaker, it's actually a bonding phenomenon. We both know it's good, both know it's right, both feel the strange hand of the Universe guiding us along with the velvet ropes.

I actually took a major step (internally) today, and I told Raechelle when we went to lunch at Duke's. Things are really happening, and sometimes I feel like we're just being whisked along for the ride. And it occurred to me that every good thing that has ever happened to me in my entire life has felt exactly like this - and that did a lot to warm my cold feet.

It's exciting. It's scary as hell (because of what it represents). And it's really, really good.

Variations on a Theme

My brilliant compadre and wordsmith, Chi-Town's own Mark Bruno, has posted a variant of the trains as political metaphor pic that was recently making the rounds. This time it's an hilarious Star Wars theme.

I don't usually wax political on my blog, mostly because I reside in a very blue state, in a major Asian port city, with a major university and a few of the wealthiest corporations in America, near our largest foreign neighbor. Everyone knows my socially-liberal/fiscally-conservative politics, so I don't feel the need to advertise most of the time. I just think it's funny that Sarah Palin has become her own punchline.

I mean, what a train wre--oh... right.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Weekend Plus!

So let's see...

Friday night Kayleigh took off to spend the night at a friend's house, and Dan & Trish joined Raechelle, Tyler and me for Iron Man. Once again, it was French bread pizza. Tyler doesn't like it, but two loaves split in half give four adults a nice amount of custom pizza real estate.

Had some nice mushy time, then Saturday was upon us. We slobbed around in our pajamas, ate cold cereal and watched cartoons with Tyler, then it was time for Raechelle to take off for some girl time with her friend Jamie, Tyler went over to Gavin's, and I had the house to myself for the first time in I-don't-know-how-long. Real ME time (which I have been craving quite a bit lately, as it helps one maintain perspective when one is normally steeped in children and a relationship). Worked on music. Nurtured my soul for a few hours.

Picked up Kayleigh at her friend's house, and drove her to Gavin's for their Star Wars RPG. Came home to find Raechelle back, and we hit the road... to Olive Garden! Yeah, don't hate us because we're a jet-set, rock-star couple. I actually had a gift card, so dinner was free. Then we hit Cost Plus for some Halloween decor for our upcoming par-tay (and replenished the wine rack - we loves us the Cost Plus!). Picked up a couple bottles of this stuff. Pretty good.

Headed home for more mushy time (watching Clerks in our jammies). And once the kids returned from Gavin's, it was bedtime.

Sunday morning came, and with it my coffee time with Ron. Came home to find Raechelle reorganizing the office. Can't stop the woman, that's for sure! We brought Kayleigh's bathroom radio outside to listen to the pitiful Seahawks game while we plowed through the rest of the boxes in the carport. I now have a load of Goodwill/Northwest Center stuff, and enough of a dump run to warrant renting a U-Haul pickup truck this week.

We came inside and collapsed on the sofa, dozing through the last of the Hawks' loss to Green Bay (at home, no less! WTF??), and awoke to the last of the Cardinals/Cowboys game. Made Raechelle giggle 'til it hurt. Then it was dinner and Buffy episodes until bedtime.

Monday morning. Time to get back into another week. And, as if on cue, Tyler had an excuse as to why he couldn't go to school. Fortunately, I had a scheduled meeting with his mental health counselor at school - a meeting Tyler himself had requested. So we went to the meeting, and I sat and watched for two hours while three women on the school staff had the exact same discussion I have with him every day. And now they're getting it. We'll know more when we have the sleep study in another month or so, and when he has his full psych evaluation at Navos.

Grabbed some lunch, got my new car tabs, and headed for home. Got there just before Kayleigh brought her friend home after school, and it was impossible to sequester either side from provoking the other. I finally sent them outside in the back yard and collapsed on my bed for a 20-minute cat nap.

After Kayleigh's friend was picked up, I took her with me to get some dinner at the deli. The characters were out in force tonight at the QFC. It was an entertaining bit of people-watching while the slowest deli clerk ever made three sandwiches very haphazardly over the course of 25 minutes. Got some salad and mac & cheese, and popped open my last Scuttlebutt amber. The sandwiches were all but inedible.

We have a busy week scheduled on this end. I hope I'm up to it.

P.S. Can I just say how much it amuses me to hear divorced people with joint custody say they "know what it's like to be a single parent"? Sorry... haven't had to bitch about the DGIs for a long time. That one just stuck with me this weekend.

Under Construction...

Sorry for the lack of post today (really need to do a good Weekend Update). Really busy with kids and school stuff. I hope to get a few minutes to post tonight.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Funny Porn & Live-In Girlfriends

Our hero, the erstwhile Captain Hammer from Dr. Horrible's Sing-a-Long Blog, the great Nathan Fillion, stars in a very funny viral video from the Gunn brothers (a couple of which were responsible for The Specials). It's a parody of crappy 1980s shot-on-video porn. Good stuff - thanks, Gavin!

And also, Raechelle is moving in with us on November 8th. And it has nothing to do with the fact that I show her funny Nathan Fillion videos.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Last Weekend With Wiley

Another chapter closes.

My friend Beth successfully brokered a new home for Wiley. The new owners in question are teachers, marathon runners and dog lovers in the extreme. They lost their Collie in May, and their two other dogs were distraught. The lady of the house, Tory, came over this afternoon to meet Wiley in person, and it was love.

He will be spoiled. He will be well-exercised. He will be well-cared-for. And he will have a pack of his own to keep him stimulated and entertained. We will get his affairs in order over the weekend, while Tory and her hubby are running a marathon in Chicago. They will pick him up on Tuesday.

There will be tears here, as we say goodbye to our fuzzy companion. But we are very happy he's going to the perfect home for him, while reducing the stress level here.

Grab Bag!

Feeling bunches better today. The headaches are still a pain in the cranium, but they're manageable now.

I'm bouncing around in my office chair to my '80s playlist while working on the Bullshot Crummond poster for Twelfth Night Productions. Let's just say I make good use of the Union Jack. I worked on the show in high school, and can't wait to see what Rick Springer does with it at Youngstown. I think having a graphics project and deadline in front of me helps to re-focus the creative side of my brain - which in turn will benefit the OA pilot screenplay. We have a production meeting tonight that will focus on the pitch. Looking forward to hammering out the strategy.

I'm feeling re-energized, creatively. This is a good thing.

Last night I was Facebooking and took a peek at my friend Mark Mezadourian's friend list to see if we had any mutual friends beyond Palo Alto High School alumni, and lo and behold, I stumbled upon an old friend from my days at LACT (now apparently called The Bus Barn Theater... ugh), April Stewart. We were in Once Upon a Mattress together, and she was the lead in The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon-Marigolds, which was directed by my roommate at the time, Bill Quinlan. Turns out she's the voice talent behind several of the female characters on South Park. So I've been enjoying her work for years without knowing it. Anyway, it was good to get back in touch. Hi, April! Congratulations on your recent maternity!

Finally, a shout out to TBGE, who sent me the pic below this morning. I usually don't go hyper-political on this forum, but I gotta say, I find it very, very funny.

Okay, off to find some lunch, then back to work...


Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Movie Premieres and Such

Ah, such a glamorous life...

Went to the Blank cast & crew screening last night at the Admiral. No, I wasn't either cast or crew, but as they say in El Lay, "I know people." If only because two of my OA cohorts were involved. And what I saw of their performances was great, but there were two issues with the screening:
  1. There was a lot of unnecessary business left in the cut - stuff that did nothing to advance the plot - so I was editing in my head and squirming in my seat. Even Darlene was bewildered by what they chose to leave in. And her scenes with "Jack" were the most engaging in the film.
  2. Halfway through the screening, someone in the audience passed out and required medical attention. The film was stopped, and the EMTs were there in two minutes flat. It was impressive.
I checked in with an actor buddy and made a new contact, and Raechelle and I ducked out for a quick drink and then went to pick up Kayleigh from a friend's house. Home by kid bedtime.

Still in a grumpy mood. Partially because of the crappy end to a great weekend (not a big fan of pain), and partially picking up on the girl's vibe. Still, it was an interesting night, and I think we just might have an actual venue for live music and indie film at the Admiral Theater (something West Seattle desperately needs). The woman in charge of artist outreach and booking spoke before the show, and was pretty serious about their mission. Rae and I are going to check out some bands there on Saturday night.

Speaking of which, I earned some major points with the girl by finding this show.

Which reminds me, I talked to Mary Springer yesterday, and will be doing the Bullshot Crummond poster. Also threw my name into the ring for directing the Fall '09 show, and it's been rumored that it might be Dracula.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


Got Tyler to his intake this morning. His old therapist was happy to see him, and handled the intake with a lovely young intern. However, since he is now a supervisor, he will not be working one-on-one with Tyler, but will select another therapist and oversee the general treatment.

Looks like we'll finally get that sleep study.

At the end of the intake interview, Tyler leaned over and gave me a big hug. As I said in an email to the girl, I think he senses I'm trying to help him out. Things are good today.

After the appointment, I took him to lunch, followed by a haircut (it's been awhile for him).

After Raechelle gets here from work, I'll prep dinner: roast chicken, pasta & salad. Then she and I have the premiere of Blank tonight at the Admiral Theater. More shmoozin' with my film peeps (and some film peeps I've been wanting to meet).

Good times.

Monday, October 6, 2008


I really should not have been out driving my manual mini-SUV in the Seattle rain with a bad back, migraine and a bum knee, but drive I did, in the name of all that is projectorly.

Even unbolting the projector from the ceiling mount is an intricate surgery, but I had to get it down in order to access the bulb housing. Fun times when it's hard to raise one's hands above the shoulders. But no pain, no gain. I know, it's stupid. I should be resting and icing the back. But I have a mission, and when I have a mission, pain is simply an inconvenience.

I replaced the aforementioned old bulb to find that the projector didn't even power up. Thinking something was hinky with the new bulb, I replaced the old one and tried again. No love. I put the new bulb in again and tried two different power supply cables. Nada.

So I got online and looked for a repair shop. Damnit. Dropped baby off at the shop and they will get me a diagnosis tomorrow.

Kayleigh just happened to choose today to bring a friend home from school, and I felt I couldn't say no because her parents "are fighting" and this happens to be the family that helped so much when Sam was dying. However, the noise and crazy energy level in the house just spiked and I'm close to losing it... again.

I wish I could take a jet tub soak, but I don't think once in the tub I would be able to lift myself out again. Back to the soafa and the ice pack. A wise woman told me this morning, "it's just a bad day." And I agree. If I can just limp through to bedtime, tomorrow is a new day.

So I Lied.

Warning: This post contains liberal amounts of mushiness, angst and photos. Not for the weak of stomach.

(Our view from the Master Suite at the Ann Starrett)

Yeah, I promised Raechelle and myself I would ignore the online world and ice my back, and in my own defense, I did just spend twenty minutes on the ice pack and can't currently feel my shoulder blades. But I feel like I can probably make with some bloggity before the pain returns.

Port Townsend Weekend '08 was a blast. Our first getaway sans children, and it was wonderful. We holed up in a beautiful room full of antique furniture and commanding views of the surrounding hamlet, and we were only about three or four blocks from the main strip.

(My lovely traveling companion)

(The bed that proved my undoing - my BACK, you pervs!)

(Raechelle on the "fainting couch")

(The bed canopy ceiling - we agreed the rose was a bit... "sphinctery")

We had great weather for a sleepy getaway: some sun, some bluster, a bit of rain. We ate, we drank, we window-shopped. I made it out with just one extra T-shirt, while Raechelle ended up with three (count 'em) THREE hats.

(Showing off the hat some big Scotsman bought her)

(Some big Scotsman trying to be all sexy on no sleep - this can't end well)

(And yet, she's adorable. Where is the justice??)

We even saw a kinetics parade, where locals showed off their crazy human-powered conveyances. It was a very lovely couple of days, spent with a very lovely woman. Lots of hilarity, and lots of mushy too. We had a great drive back to the Bainbridge ferry and were home in the mid-afternoon (after learning that the Seahawks had been slaughtered by the NY Giants - mother pus-bucket!).

Unfortunately, the physical toll of no sleep in a Victorian-era bed that was at least two inches too short and a chronic ear infection that returned in the cold Port Townsend weather combined with the mental stress of coming home to find the interior temp at 75F and two stove burners going unattended (among other lesser issues), making my spine into a crackling labyrinth of pain. To top off this amazing agony sundae, I slammed my left knee into the corner of the coffee table just in time for that pain to join the fresh migraine (and the knee is all kinds of colorful today!). Despite this, I still made a trip to Bed, Bath & Beyond for some drawer organizers as Raechelle kinda went on an organizing binge. She made a dent in the wine from the previous night, and I had a couple beers (it had been that kind of afternoon). She cooked a really yummy dinner, and we settled down to watch a bit of the Pittsburgh/Jacksonville game and some Sunday night Fox animation while Raechelle caught up on some of her blog reading and helped Kayleigh a bit with her homework (I know! Crazy, I tell ya!).

Then it was an episode of Buffy (1st season), and bedtime. Well, bedtime for everyone but me. I'd had such a great weekend, but all of the frustration of physical pain and finding stove burners going full blast when I walked into my home (when I'm already paranoid about fire) meant that I was wound way too tight to get to sleep. Raechelle was pooped and was in no condition to chat, so I couldn't even "download" all the crap spinning around in my head like marbles in a glass jar.

Needless to say, not a good night for the Toddster.

I awoke to conflict with Tyler (gee, who saw that coming??), saw Raechelle off to work with a latte and lunch, and dropped Kayleigh at school. Immediately made an appointment for Tyler back with his old counselor at Highline (now that the kids are covered again, I'm hitting the overdue maintenance, and that includes mental & emotional upkeep). Next up, both kids to the dentist!

That should just about bring y'all up to date on my part of the weekend. Raechelle says she will post tonight after work, since her new gig doesn't allow her a lot of leisure web time. She has some pics on her camera too, including one of me on the "fainting couch", for contrast.

And I just received the replacement bulb for my video projector, so it looks like I have a project this afternoon.

Victorians Are The Bane Of My Existence

I had hoped there would be enough time this evening to post a weekend update of our wonderful getaway to Port Townsend, but alas, it will have to wait.

Sleeping in a bed made for people who lived a hundred years ago did some nasty things to my spine, and I'm in a world of discomfort now. Note the timestamp - I actually took the industrial-strength Homedics two-pronged massager upstairs so that Raechelle could sleep. Laying awake in pain does no one any good.

So I'm trying to wind down to the point where I can sneak back into bed and get a few hours sleep before the school and work week begins anew. I will try to post something a bit later in the day, and hopefully get a nap at some point.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Leaving Town

So in a little less than three hours, the girl & I will be headed for Port Townsend for the weekend. I'm not bringing the laptop, so our faithful readers will have to just wait until Sunday night for a recap (if you're very very good).

We will take pictures, and post the SFW ones. [wink]

Ciao babes!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

And I'm Spent...

It's been a hectic day, but it's yielded a lot of good stuff:

  1. The kids now have health coverage.
  2. Tyler now has after school tutoring from his math teacher two days a week.
  3. We may have found a home for Wiley (thank you Beth!).
  4. I got a curious new brainworm in the form of this song.
  5. I just finished watching the VP debate, and my colon hurts.
That's all I got... I'm exhausted.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Samhain Approacheth

I know I've mentioned the Celtic origins of Halloween before, in the ancient holy day of Samhain (sah-wen), the eve of Celtic New Year. I may also have mentioned that for the past 4 or 5 years, I haven't really been into the whole decorate-for-the-holidays thing. Well this year, I've been inspired (duh). The autumn wreath is a Raechelle original.

I couldn't get a decent shot of the front porch with the flash, but they're all blurry without. So here's both. The clear but non-glowy one will give you an idea of what's actually there, and the blurrier, glowy one will give you a more realistic impression of the lighting.

Sick Pumpkins

I wanted to share this with my readers because: a) it's a great concept for Halloween decor (especially at a frat house); and b) it reminds me of my own Halloweens past.

This was sent to me in an email forward from my stepmom, so I don't have the original photo credit. If the photographer/carver(s) find this on my blog, I assure you no copyright infringement is intended - kudos to you for a brilliant concept!