Doing It Wrong archive

Category : Life (19)

What I did over the weekend.

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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.

It’s morning in America

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Published on: November 4, 2008

I recalled those words this morning as I walked my daughter to school. I was too young to vote and didn’t really know what they meant at the time. I was in high school and hope was limited to easy exams and cute girls.

It is a beautiful autumn morning. The sun lit up the trees that were already burning with autumn leaves. I know that history will be made and I understand the hope and promise wrapped up in those words: morning in America. I understand what drove that previous landslide political victory and know I’ll see a similar one in a few hours.


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Published on: July 20, 2008

“Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired, signifies in the final sense a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.”
Dwight David Eisenhower

I’ve tried to express this a number of times to people who have repeated the canard that “war is good for the economy”. Warfare is, in fact, a colossal waste of resources that could be spent building infrastructure and people. For example, Congress has just canceled the DDG 1000 destroyer program that had a cost per unit of about $5 billion dollars after two boats had been built.

Ten billion dollars for two battleships. For perspective, the money spent on this one program is almost twice the total funding for the National Science Foundation which provides grants and funding for a significant fraction of the scientific research in the US. It’s frustrating to listen to our President boast about his funding of scientific research when the entirety of NSF funding is dwarfed by a single military program.

As a people, we need to seriously reconsider our priorities.

Bathing a twenty pound maine coone…

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Published on: June 27, 2007

He’s always been our little guy. He’s very timid and quiet. He hides from strangers. Never bites or bares his claws. As far as cats go he’s a seven foot queen of a gay man with a tiny chihuahua peeking out of his man purse.  But the one thing I forgot was that every gay man I know can fight like Mike Tyson after smoking a $20 rock.

He tried to climb the walls. He tried to climb me. He knocked me over. My wife thought I was moving furniture. Our soft, fat boy had, in a matter of seconds, converted the body built by a life of leisure into an engine of muscle and bone with a single purpose: escape. I muscled him back into the tub and got the soap on him. He was now not only wet but slippery. I know there is a part of me that is suicidal because I suddenly had the thought “I can keep him in the tub if I get in with him and slide the shower door shut”.

With a laugh that is only possible when your reptile brain has seized the wheel and screamed “THIS IS THE END! ARMAGEDDON!” I  followed the instructions and began to build up a  luxurious lather by rubbing the soap into his fur, being careful to avoid his eyes.  It’s kind of a blur of lathering, rinsing and repeating after that. I’m pretty sure I lost consciousness at least once but Mr Teatime appears to be clean and won’t come anywhere near me.


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Published on: June 12, 2007

So I turned 39 the other day. I didn’t make a big deal about it because I wasn’t certain how I felt about approaching the big “four oh”. Saturday I had a nice time with Jyllian, Josette and Jim; we went out to a local Italian place Jyllian remembered from when she was a kid and had an interesting take on Italian food. Afterwards we had coffee at a local spot and had a nice conversation.

The funny thing is that there was a definite theme to my gifts this year. I received two books on Buddhism (How to Practice by the Dalai Lama and The Joy of Living by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche), a decorative Buddha head in the Malaysian style, a shirt and a pair of shorts. To paraphrase Captain Esteban from Zorro the Gay Blade, I think they’re trying to tell me something…

I also got a kitten but, to be fair, that’s Emily’s cat and not mine. Two kittens were abandoned at out vets office and were destined for the animal shelter and to be put to sleep. We took one, I little girl “cow cat” named Haru (who at this moment is attacking my leg). The boys were pretty freaked out at first but everyone is getting used to everyone else.

I’m also adding a new category to this blog: Fit by Forty. I picked up a copy of Body for Life by Bill Phillips and even if I don’t get my six pack back it won’t continue to be a pony keg.

All or nothing

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Published on: February 3, 2007

The last few weeks have been hard. It’s hurt. A lot.

It’s one thing to think about the pain and transience of our lives when things are going well and another entirely when it sneaks up behind you, knocks you down and starts kicking you in the stomach. We grow up beliving that all options are open to us, all paths available. It’s hard when you realize that some ways are now closed and that there are things that we’ll never do or feel again. We can’t go back, we can only go forward.

Jyllian told me one time about how if you ever wanted to switch places with anyone, that to be perfectly honest, you had to take everything that they had. Leaving nothing out. At the same time you had to abandon everything of your own. Your experiences, your memories, the very essence of who your are. You can’t look at someones life from the outside, pick the good parts and splice them into your own life. It’s all or nothing.

I think the same thing goes when we look back at our lives and wish we’d taken a slightly different path. We’re the accumulation of our experiences and even a slight change would require an abandonment of everything we now have. I couldn’t have left Santa Barbara for San Francisco at any other time and still be sitting here in my office listening to my daughter thump around upstairs. I couldn’t have met and married my wife at any other time and had the marriage I cherish today. The forks in the road don’t ever converge again.

Looking at what I have now and the opportunities before me there is no way I would take that gamble that turning right instead of left would have produced a better outcome. It’s a bittersweet waste of time to even speculate on what might have been. There’s no way to know and no way to go back.

What I have is going to hurt for a while. Like an old football injury, there will be moments to come when an unexpected turn of thought will cause it to ache again for the rest of my life. But it’s all or nothing. What I have hurts but is wonderful as well.


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Published on: November 4, 2006

Remember remember
the fifth of November
Gunpowder, treason and plot.
I see no reason
why gunpowder, treason
Should ever be forgot…

Apropos for this election season. If we have the same questionable election results, the way we have in the last two presidential elections, it might not be totally out of the question for a few thousand Guy Fawkes masks to show up on the steps of Congress on Nov 5, 2008.


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Published on: October 18, 2006

I said goodbye to my guild, deleted my character from World of Warcraft, closed the account and uninstalled the program this evening. I’m not going to say anything to my wife to see how frequently she actually checks my journal.

Cemetary ducks

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Published on: October 12, 2006

After I got done with work this evening Jyllian, Emily and I walked around the corner to the graveyard to feed the ducks some bread. It’s been a little chilly the past few days but it was still nice. The ducks and geese were hungry and chased us to get the food which was fun but I kept thinking of Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Ducks”.

We walked around a bit more putting the flowers back in order and looking at all the old stones. There must have been some sort of event of holiday or something because there were a huge number of flowers in the cemetary, far more than usual. It was strange looking at the stones, their different styles and ages. I found one that was barely readable and well over a hundred years old. People apparently also buy family plots and put up marker stones when nobody is even in them which I find more than a little creepy. Like putting a bookmark at the end of the book when you’re still in the middle.

There also appears to be some serious competition going on in the more “well to do” area of the cemetary (which oddly enough backs up onto some pretty generic apartments and has a surprisingly poor view). The older area of the cemetary had the usual headstones you expect to see before the easily mown plates became all the rage. The standard headstone sized markers prevailed with a few celtic crosses and a couple of obelisks.

The newer “garden” area is downright gauche in comparison with markers clearly designed for the McMansion and H3 crowd. One monument was an upright slab of black marble that looked like the monolith from 2001 and had to be at least nine feet tall. Even creepier, the guy under it was a year younger than I am. When I die I want the biggest, gaudiest monument I can get. I want a fat cherub with an eternal flame shooting out of his ass and a big screen monitor with a video of me extolling my virtues in an endless loop. I want an eyesore that will drive down the local cemetary property values. I would then like to actually be cremated an interred under a small headstone in the old section of the yard which has been artificially aged to match the stones around it.

Or they can just feed me to the ducks.

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