James Martini archive

Tag : Family (8)

Dissappointed

Categories: Journal
Tags:
Comments: Comments Off
Published on: August 6, 2018

There comes a point when it’s clear that you’re not the central figure in your kid’s life. It’s a good thing. You know it’s going to happen someday. You accept it as a natural part of growing up.

The problem is, that moment sneaks up on you when you least expect it and then punches you in the kidney without the slightest warning. Sure, they still want to do things with you but, the fact is, you’re no longer at the top of the priority list and, in fact, you’re further down that list than you’d like to admit.

God, it hurts.

But, it’s good. It’s necessary. And I’d be the worst kind of parent if I manipulated my kid into doing things that make me happy rather than the things that make her happy. So, here I sit, going through another block of python code while she talks and laughs with her friends in the next room rather than playing video games with me.

It’s the right thing but damn if it doesn’t suck ass.

Oh that’s not right…

Categories: Journal
Tags: ,
Comments: Comments Off
Published on: November 12, 2013

flyinganimals-14So another Halloween has come and gone. Our 13th wedding anniversary was a success. The wife has a new job that she loves and the kid has a new school that she also loves (although the homework slightly less so). I reconnected with my brother and we’ve been playing SWTOR and talking over mumble. We’re starting what is probably one of the more politically incorrect guilds in recent memory so be sure to look for us on Anita Sarkeesian’s blog, Jezebel, and the View in the coming months as we attempt to explain that it’s all in fun and what the British mean by “taking the piss”. Our oven dying an untimely death by thunderstorm right before Thanksgiving notwithstanding, things are good.

As I pack away and make minor repairs on my Halloween decorations it’s also time to start coming up with ideas for next year. I need to redo my graveyard fence, not so much because it is need of repair but that it can be improved. I don’t think I can reattach the head to “the guy” who I had hung from a gibbet in the front yard. He’s been hanging from a tree limb or a gibbet for about five years now and a windstorm finally popped his head off. I could probably reattach the head but I’d never be able to hang him from it again.

Now the gibbet is very simple construction: two 4x4s in a slightly offcenter ‘T’ formation. Nothing special but great for hanging a body from. I like the hanged man idea and I’m cheap so the first thing that occurs to me is that I can still hang him from the gibbet. I just need to make it a nice even ‘T’ and then tie his arms to the crossbars with the rope he’d formerly been hung with. Simple…

And then I remember where I live. I’m contemplating putting what can only be considered a crucified skeleton in my front yard. Yeah, no way someone can take that the wrong way.

 

Bad Buddhist

Categories: Buddhism, Life
Tags: , , ,
Comments: Comments Off
Published on: November 22, 2011

I occasionally frequently have days when I wonder if self identifying as a Buddhist isn’t a combination of irony and an attempt to pull the wool over other people’s eyes. I’ve been reading a lot more books on Buddhism and Buddhist themed blogs recently and I’m constantly struck by the gulf between my experience and the experience of other middle class white Americans who similarly self identify as Buddhists.

I don’t care about enlightenment. This isn’t false modesty, I don’t doubt that there some state of being in which one perceives and groks the nature of existence but such a state seems so distant from my daily mental locus that it’s like looking at the moon; beautiful but infinitely out of reach. I struggle just to not be a dick to people in my immediate vicinity

I think dharma names are silly. Maybe it’s because I did the whole goth thing back in the 90s and hung out with people who referred to themselves with fanciful names dripping with angst and import (you know who you are). I think it’s great that Rob Wierzbaski from Scranton has taken up meditation and instruction from a saffron robed teacher from the roof of the world. I admire his dedication and the discipline of the vows he has undertaken. When, however, he is referred to or refers to himself as Tendo Dorje I either have to stifle either a smirk or a sneer.

I’m suspicious of dharma transmission. I have a very different and more mundane take on the Flower Sermon. The Buddha silently holds up a flower, everyone is wrapped up in what he means by this, one person, looking at the flower, smiles. I’m sure that somewhere an enlightened tulku just had a shooting pain in his left arm as a result of how wrong I am but it honestly makes more sense to me than mental telepathy.

I masturbate about as frequently as I meditate. Okay, a lot more frequently. I sometimes wonder if there’s really that much of a difference but, in general, I’m far more relaxed after one than I am the other.

I have an Indonesian style Buddha head statue on my desk that was given to me as a wonderful gift by my loving wife. I don’t bow to him. I don’t pay homage to him. Truth be told, I don’t even dust him all that often. I do, however, wonder what music he listens to when I use him as a rack for my headphones.

I guess when it comes down to it there is a lot about Buddhism that speaks to me. The Four Noble Truths make sense although I’ll admit the third is a leap of faith. A lot of the things you’re supposed to strive for as a Buddhist strike me as things we could use more of in the world. Kindness, introspection, inner and outer peace, all pretty good things.

I saw Star Wars The Empire Strikes Back as a kid and wanted to be wise like Yoda. I had a philosophy professor in college who one said I had sainthood within my grasp which is a hell of an ego boost for a twenty-something year old but, in retrospect, is more like a gypsy curse that has taken the form of the 800 pound gorilla of unrealized potential.

Anyway, time to wash the dishes and vacuum the house.

Ten seconds, twenty years ago

Categories: Family
Tags: , ,
Comments: 1 Comment
Published on: November 20, 2011

One afternoon in the early 90s I was walking on the 3rd St Promenade in Santa Monica with my friend Heather when I heard what can only be described as the sound of unadulterated joy. A little girl, about three years old, was getting her face licked by a friendly dog and laughing like only a child can laugh. It was my memory of that moment that eventually led to my wife noticing me and eventually to having a daughter of my own.

I’m going to go tickle her now.

It’s Like Deja Vu All Over Again

Categories: Buddhism, Family
Comments: Comments Off
Published on: August 20, 2011

I’ve been an asshole today. It started out okay, I went out this morning and picked up donuts for my daughter and also surprised my sister-in-law and niece with some as well. There was some confusion regarding what Jyllian wanted and what I thought they were called so I picked her up a big cinnamon roll. Pickings were scarce and the bakery was like a combination mob scene and Running Man food riot.

Anyway, I was feeling all good about myself and puffed up with what a good Dad and all around great guy I was when I brought Jyllian coffee and the cinnamon roll. What I didn’t remember was that she’d gotten sick after eating a cinnamon roll a couple weeks before. She said “ugh” as her stomach rolled over and handed the plate to Emily which completely let all the air out of my inflated self esteem. I didn’t get the praise and accolades I was looking forward to. How dare she!

With my vanity wounded I barked out something that inadvertently hurt her feelings and went downstairs to nurse my bruised ego. I ended up working out in the yard; mowed the grass, cleaned up dead leaves, watered the plants and moved the woodpile to it’s new location, holding on to my anger and wounded pride the entire time. I finally had to come in as it was after noon, over a hundred degrees and I was flirting with heat stroke.

After a shower and some water I sat down in my office to finally have a cup of coffee and that cinnamon roll while I read only to find that Zak had vomited hair into the top air vent of my desktop computer. All the anger came rushing back and I spent the next hour cleaning my office and generally barking at anyone who came within twenty feet of me. I got my office clean but made my daughter cry and barked “I’m not angry!” at Jyllian which would have been funny at any other time.

The girls went out to go swimming while I continued to work on my office and clean up the house. With the quiet and lack of targets for me to blame for my assholery I had to admit that I was the one acting out and that my girls had been trying to find a way to help me feel better.

I’d love to say that I’ve learned and grown from this experience but to be honest this isn’t the first time I’ve just been a general ass to everyone around me simply because things weren’t going my way or I’d had my pride stepped on. Next time maybe I’ll pull my head out of my ass a little more quickly though.

I txted Jyllian an apology and spent some time hanging one of the strings of prayer flags she and Emily got me for Father’s Day which have been buried in the general chaos of my office. I also made space for another present that Jyllian got me, my Buddha Board, by putting my desktop machine under my desk where the cat can’t vomit on it as easily.

Tibetan prayer flagsI’ll hang the second string soon but have to trim the evil holly bush with the sharp leaves before I can get a clear run from the house to the tree. I’m sure there’s some lesson lurking in that statement but, to be honest, I’m a little too wiped out at the moment to try being profound.

Bridging the gulf with EVE

Categories: Family, Gaming
Tags: , , ,
Comments: Comments Off
Published on: August 10, 2011

I never talk to my brother which a lot of people find strange because we’re twins. I don’t really know what it is but  it never occurs to me to pick up the phone and call him. It works the same for him. No big deal really. I love him and sometimes think about him but we never pick up the phone.

EVE OnlineSo one afternoon I posted a random error message from EVE online to my facebook page: insufficient power. About an hour later my brother responded with another warning from EVE online: I cannot set a waypoint to the same location twice. We’d been playing the same online game for years.

A few days later I logged into EVE and had an email from my brother so I added him to my watch list. A couple days after that we happened to be online at the same time and started chatting. Mostly a little catching up but he recommended that I look into joining his corp.

A few days after that I’d applied to and been accepted to his corp. Since then I’ve had more communication with my twin than I’ve probably had in the last five years combined. I know what he’s up to with his college and internship, how things are going with his kids and generally have regular conversations with him via corp chat and our personal channel. I’ll probably get him a headset with a mic for christmas so we can actually talk to each other.

After decades of only rarely speaking I now have frequent chats with Scott and he’s even on board for my guild/social experiment idea in Star Wars: The Old Republic when it launches.

Let me explain… no there is no time, let me sum up

Categories: Family, Life
Comments: Comments Off
Published on: March 17, 2010
  • Wife was ill
  • Grew another eye on the back of my head
  • Wife is better
  • I was ill
  • The eye is still there
  • Exercise is hit and miss
  • Emily loved the Lightning Thief
  • Emily loves Lady Gaga
  • Still hacking out ideas for Memento
  • Going to get the eye removed soon

What I did over the weekend.

Categories: Life
Tags: , , , ,
Comments: Comments Off
Published on: February 28, 2010

But it was for a good reason as I was helping Kurt and Tanya move into their new place. It’s really nice and the view from their deck is going to be amazing in the spring and autumn. Emily spent the afternoon playing with Annie and I helped move stuff from the old house to the new. I may end up going bow hunting with Kurt this autumn if the whole diet and exercise plan pays off. I’d considered working out when I got home but was pretty wiped out and still sore from Thursday.

Jyllian has been sick with the stomach flu or something so we stuck close to home on Sunday. I read a chapter out of my python book, got some other reading done, goofed off on EVE, puttered around the house and looked after my girls.

My diet pretty much sucked on Saturday. Sunday was a little better.

I start running again tomorrow. I’m really not looking forward to it.

page 1 of 1
Welcome , today is Monday, December 10, 2018