Sunday, October 31, 2004

I've been meaning to sit down and type out a long-winded, detailed reflection of the past week or so, but things got busy over the past few hours and my well-meaning came to naught, which probably doesn't bode very well for the upcoming month of well-meant noveling. I have changed my strategy somewhat from last year, i.e. I'm not worried about being particularly good, let alone attempting to match Dan's knack for likeable characters or coherant, flowing storylines. I'll start with wordiness and see what emerges, and if it's monstrous, well, I'll just lock it in my basement.

Anyway, I'm back out to Gila Bend for another week of bombing range walking around (more on this in a while). Actually, this is a pretty good time to start something like NaNoWriMo, as I'll be holed up in a low-rent hotel room on an Air Force base during the evenings -- no baseball, no interruptions, and no bombings during off hours. So now I've gotta get my crap together, get to bed, and be up at 4 am and off for a full day wandering in the desert looking for manna and flagging sites. Yes, more soon.

And good luck to all those making the attempt to novel once again -- may you all be entirely seduced by your muses.

Saturday, October 23, 2004

I find this deeply disturbing (you have to register with Mercury News to read it, but it's more than worth it if you're interested in some clarity). I find it very awkward to write about large blocks of people in sweeping, blanket condemnation, but, y'know, when I have studies like this to back it up, it becomes slightly easier. I always wondered about the mental workings of Bush supporters -- the intellectual machinations that produce a bottom line that reads, "Bush is the better candidate." And I've seen polls that indicate the majority of Bush supporters aren't actively voting against John Kerry (it's much lower than Kerry supporters who are trying to oust Bush) -- THEY LIKE BUSH.

And according to the article above, nothing will stand in the way of their love for Bush (no snickering at that last sentence, please). Not facts, not Congressional reports, and especially not reality. The majority of Bush supporters surveyed believe that Hussein did indeed have WMDs or a major program to develop them, and provided assitance to Al Qaida. And a majority of these same people said it would have been wrong to invade Iraq if the above had been not been true. So these inner machinations aren't so much, "Bush is a strong leader and righteous Christian who will continue to guide this country through our current battle against terrorists and make us all safe," so much as, "LALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALA... is the news still on? LALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALALA, etc."

So fuck campaigning -- I have no idea WHAT to do in the face of that kind of psychological blockade.
"Here's some critical information regarding the future of our country!"
"No, thank you. I've got my delusions just the way I like 'em!"

And this is just too freakin' cool. I got mine this week -- I think Orrin Hatch and Pat Robertson might be the most chilling, and Rumsfeld has a good "Demon King" vibe going on.

And this Monday, I'm off to Luke Air Force Base in Gila Bend (BF AZ, for those curious as to its exact location) for two weeks for some leisurely surveying and desert strolling.

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

A really funny incident occurred over the weekend while I was listening to one of the final regular-season Cardinal games of the season. has a Cardinals chatroom, where you can, well, basically waste your time with other Cardinal fans who are in the process of wasting their time. I log on occasionally to go ALL CAPS when we win or group-mope when we lose.

One of the participants was being an absolute pest -- if someone disagreed with him on even trivial things, they'd be labeled an idiot. He'd fill up the screen with obscenities. He'd be contentious and rude about pretty much everything. The guy gave the proceedings the air of a 13-year-old middle school bully in a sports bar. So I made the casual remark that it's a shame that you can't slap the shit out of someone over cyberspace. Apparently, that flipped a switch. The guy IMs me and does the internet equivalent of giving me that oh-too-familiar first shove. Over the internet.

"How bout I give you my phone number and we'll go from there, asshole!"
I wasn't really sure what to make of this. I'd never really been in a fight before, but from what I remember from middle school, the guy trying to indimidate you was usually supposed to be in the same room, or somehow able to physically affect you in some way.

Andy: What the hell is wrong with you?
Nutjob: You yanked my chain one too many times! Maybe I should kick your ass for you.
Andy: I'm in Arizona!
Nutjob: That's too far.
Andy: Yup. Too far.
Nutjob: Maybe you'll just make me change my vacation plans.

But that assumes that I would have actually given him my address, description, maybe scheduled a time (coordinated with his incomong flight plans) to meet out on a playground out back of a school or something and shove each other around some. Maybe he could pull my shirt up over my head and tackle me and we could wrestle around a little like they did back in the day. I've heard of people traveling cross-country to finally meet up and capitalize on an internet love affair, but I have yet to learn of a formalized conference by which satisfaction for a chatroom insult was had.

Strangely, it did feel a little bit good, though. I haven't had any interaction with bullies since middle school, and yet here was the genuine article going through the same routine, except disembodied and ridiculously impotent. I wound up laughing at him (again, ALL CAPS), and he signed off in a huff. Almost like he was signing me up in a program for systematic desensitization for bully-phobia -- next, I have to stand and look at one from afar before coming closer.

And at the very end of the program, you go to the nearest middle school and beat up the largest 13-year-old you can find.

Monday, October 04, 2004

I'm thinking I may have to think up a new title for my blog. I was dining with Janine not long ago at a local Mimi's Cafe -- I'm not sure how much of a chain restaurant it is, but there are at least two in town. The food's pretty decent faux-Cajun, but the decor is a visually cloying stab at the boisterous Mardi Gras palette. Anyway, I was glancing around and caught what's apparently Mimi's slogan: Fillet of Soul, next to an awful painting of a shambling saxophonist. I do like Mimi's, but I really don't want someone stumbling upon this thing and muttering to themselves, "Hey, I didn't know Mimi's Cafe had a blog... Who's the fruitcake with the teacup?"

Meanwhile, I gotta congratulate my friends Jana & Justin, who were wed over the weekend here in town. I'm pretty sure they don't read this, so I'll add that our wedding was better.

And take a jab at the globe and sign my new guestmap!