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August 27, 2011

You can lead a man to knowledge but you can't make him think
"Return of the Ex-Girlfriend" by Loveless

Hedi Klum
Click images for desktop size: "Heidi Klum"
Happy birthday to me.
I spent the eve of my birthday playing with amps, capacitors and resistors. It was fun. Plan to doKill Bill 1 the same tomorrow.
Mailed a surprise present to my wife. Mostly handmade electronical present. I'm certain that when she opens it she'll appreciate the artistry, the thought and the hard work and she'll have no idea what it is or what it does. Isn't that great!?!
The hurricane was a bust. The earthquake was cooler and it was pretty dismal in its way. My puppy and I were out with out pennants too.
USC meets Minnesota in the opener in one week!
Football is nearly here.
Shonen Knife - Osaka Ramones Get it. Play it. Love it.

August 20, 2011

Prosperity is full of friends

Decoration by WH Robinson
Click images for desktop size: "Decoration" by WH Robinson
My bank has named by checking account "Lifetime Free Checking". It's important to know this or else the rest seems pretty normal.IT! The Terror From Beyond Space
I got a letter and then an email this week. They both said the same thing: On November 1st your "Lifetime Free Checking Account" will be moved to "Everyday Checking". "Everyday Checking" will cost you only $7.00 per month.
My first thought, before I got angry, was that banks and I have different definitions for either Lifetime or Free or perhaps we see both words differently. I was slightly mollified by reading that because I had direct deposit on my account the fee would be waived. That was short lived as the next line stated that I would be charged $5 per month for my Debit/Checking card!
I'd been reading about the banks plans to pull this stunt some months ago. I thought it had been disallowed as common sense but also as unfair, disruptive and exploitive. I mean, hundreds of millions spent advertising free checking cards forcing people to rely on and use them while earning billions in extortionate fees from merchants and now the banks need to extort more money from us.
I was foolish. I believed that Congress and the President would protect us from the greed of the banks. The greed that has brought our country to its knees.
I was an idiot to rely on government to do the right thing.
I have to decide, unfortunately about whether to change banks and get stuck eventually for the same fees and deal with the present where a new bank would end up costing me more than $5 a month is usurious ATM fees.
These are not decisions that a citizen in the USA should have to make. I blame the government for ignoring the people and helping the banks violate basic human decency.

August 17, 2011

Hope for the best but expect less

Superman DC Comics
Click images for desktop size: "Superman" by Dc Comics
I made the final payment on my wife yesterday.
Actually I made the final payment of the immigration lawyers fee. I just like to say that stuff about
It Conquered The World
owning her free and clear because there's nobody around to cuff me on the back of my head.
My wife should have her interview in Oct/Nov, then if everything rumbles along as it should, she should be here before Christmas.
My puppy is very happy about this as she thinks it is too much work keeping me in line all on her own.
Me; I'm just looking forward to a whole other set of anxieties: Job, buying a home etc. Real world stuff. Who needs real world stuff when happiness is so near?

August 12, 2011

The trouble with a kitten is that when it grows up, it's always a cat
Ogden Nash

Untitled by Smith
Click images for desktop size: "Untitled" by Smith
Purple Chick Music has just released "The Complete Shangri-Las". And, boy, is it ever complete. On 2 CD's and a DVD they've managed to present every burp hiccup sound smile and frown the Shangri-Las ever made in front of a microphone or camera.Intimate Illusions
If you feel that Mary Weiss is one of the greatest quixotic talents of all time this collection is already flowing through your blood and enraging your beleagured hormones. If you don't feel that Mary Weiss and the twins are a devastating tour de force to be reckoned with and not merely enjoy then I don't think I know you.
The DVD is exquisite. It starts with excerpts from the 80's documentary "The Rock & Roll Era" and includes the cool snip where Cynthia Weill tries to explain her fear of and sexual attraction to the Shangri-Las.
"These were tough girls. The way they talked, the way they popped their gum. They were tough street girls. We'd never seen anything like them before."
She didn't understand that the Shangri-Las were girls you'd bust up a party for a chance to talk to alone for just a few minutes. Every song they sang, every dance move said that they understood and that it didn't matter what you did for a living or if you were battered and bloody, it only mattered that you were true to yourself and true to them.
Back at the carnage of the party, even if you struck out with Mary their were still the twins who just broadcast fun and games. The Shangri-Las were all that. The kind of girls you'd scheme to just get them to notice you.
The video has the group on all the old rock shows, sharing the stage with The Bryds, Lloyd Thaxton, The Righteous Brothers, pop stars, TV stars and movie stars and the Shangri-Las always hold center stage, they commanded and ruled the stage.
Wird Tales by Brundage
Click images for desktop size: "Weird Tales 1933" by Brundage
The final oddity is a news clip from the 80's when the Shangri'Las came out of retirement to sue some disco type chicks who were advertising themselves as the Shangri-Las! Mary Weiss used her married name on camera. The rumour I'd lived with was that she'd dumped raock and roll and married a truck driver that she stayed devoted to. I hope it's true.
Mary looked pretty much like she does now, judging from the TV appearances promoting her solo album a few years ago. She's still a heartbreaker who understands what an audience is and how to stop a show with a whisper or a scream.
The CD's have all the hits, including odd little studio chatter and freaky little fragments of songs and operatic dialogue. It's essential and it rocks. Not having this and "Myrmidons Of Melodrama" is to be masochistically nursing a hole in your heart.

I discovered my puppy can wake me just by staring at me . . . I have no idea what that really signifies.

August 7, 2011

I'm not finished yet

Untitled By Wally Wood
Click images for desktop size: "Untitled" by Wally Wood
I'm fatigued, nearly as bad as leukemia fatigue but not as all encompassing as that.
It's the heat. The walking to work everyday and drenched in sweat. 3.1 miles and 3 miles of it How To Make A Monster wiping the sweat from my eyes. Then I stand on my feet for 8 hours, I don't get a break or a lunch hour. Right to work state means the employer can abuse us all he wants. No holidays, no days off and no vacation, just drudgery and abuse.
My glutes are sore, my hamstrings tight, my calfs throb and my feet swell up to almost twice their normal size. They have me on diuretics for the swollen feet. And my legs are fit. It never seems right that you can be fit and in fatigue pain at the same time. There should be a rule.
I'm tired and it takes almost all by brain just to keep pushing me to take that next step, get through the next hour, next 15 minutes.
It takes my sparse energy to deal with my loving puppy and my loving wife. After that I've little left for much else. I go hungry some nights because I didn't have the energy to tote home groceries or if I did I don't have the energy to prepare anything. I take my pills. Do my shot of insulin. Collapse and sleep a sweat filled jittery kind of sleep with a few hours of death in there but mainly I'm just trying to fall asleep.
To push me to sleep I listen to podcasts. I really only listen to two types: Dogs and old time radio. My current fascination is with "Our Miss Brooks" which is so dated and cruel towards woman I listen in fascination.
I saw the doctor for my annual check up. With all my negatives I'm fine. Tough, tight skinned (I've no idea what that means but they keep mentioning it). I still look healthy. I remind myself that doctor's spend most of their time looking at sick people so I can't put a lot of value to their well meaning assessment. I guess it means that I'm a mess but I sure don't look it. SoCal style, "Its better to look good than to feel good."
I have to add another insulin. Three more shots a day. Toughness is sometimes the ability just to go through each day and not remember.Beezelbub by Unknown
Click images for desktop size: "Beezlebub" by Unknown
We're moving closer to getting my wife a green card. I try not to look forward past this. I'm ignoring the future as best I can: The move, trying to find her a job, trying to find a house the usual rubbishthat can come up and become dramatic. The immigration process is aggravating enough and every small bight spot seems like a celestial explosion of giddy lights and slashing comets.
I've mixed feelings about the NFL lockout ending. The same way I think that Congress needs to be severely punished for the cruel government they've been imposing on us I think the NFL owners need to be punished for the stupidity of the lockout and the absolute disregard they've shown for the fans and spectators. How do you punish billionaires who treat us with the contempt they feel we deserve?
The prejudiced incomprehensible actions of the NCAA have tainted the joy of USC's upcoming season, but as practice has started this week I still find myself excited and looking forward to Troy destroying everything put in its way.Hot Times My job still sucks. I dislike being manager and realize I was right to avoid it for as long as I did.Surprisingly I've gradually increased revenues by 30%/. Rah.
Of course I can't get through my little idea of small bonuses to the staff to thank them for the extra effort and extra work. When a staff of 6 are generating $15k plus a week net profit it seems more than churlish to not give a $50 or even $20 bonus for a job well done. Instead of threats, which is all we get, they think praise is wasted and that everyone is just trying to rip them off. Self fullfilling prophecy that. Hungry people gotta eat. And the unappreciated have no cause for loyalty. There's no reason to be grateful when you do your best and receive nothing but threats for uncommitted crimes.
The only good part of the managerial bit is that I get to fight for common sense and decency. The little extra money helps too. Its not much but even $20 a week can make a difference especially when your self worth demands you be honest.

I still have to figure out what to do with the site. I want it, need it. But, clearly, I can't keep it going the way I want it. I average around 200 visitors a day, for whatever that's worth. I have a vision of how I want it to be. Some of it's just not possible: A combination of my technical limitations and my lack of energy.
I'm making moves to be able to change some of the things I want to change. It's more a matter of content and rapid shorter posts. I think it can work.
Untitled by MacGeek
Click images for desktop size: "Untitled" by MacGeek
I'm still getting bombarded with spam. That ticks me off. There are about 150 spam comments an hour. I like the comments. There's a fellow who keeps correcting my errors in artist's name. It's important to me but it's too tedious to go through emails and track down the offending caption. A comment would link me straight to it. And of course I worry about who might be trying to reach me and I worry that its important to them. Still need a solution to that.