Thursday, November 30, 2006

Please Note That I Am Not Linking to Britney's Private Bits

My copy of the latest Locus arrived yesterday, with my ugly mug right there on the Deals/Announcements/Milestones page, right next to Ted's. Woo-hoo! I need a better picture, though.

Go here and light a candle; the evil pharmaceutical company will donate money to AIDS research when you do. Maybe that makes them non-evil? My head hurts.

Back in my college/lost years I kept Capcom in business pumping quarters into Street Fighter II. I think I finished with all the characters except one, but I can't remember which one. Dhalsim, maybe. Which is apropos, since Dhalsim is one of the stars of Street Fighter: The Later Years. Hilarious stuff, and more to come.

Flashback video: the Cowboy Junkies cover of "Sweet Jane." Fucking gorgeous. I'm going to go watch it again.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

"Form three lines. You're in the wrong line, buddy."

It was a beautiful morning, and now it's raining like mad. Ah well. The snow will be here tomorrow, I guess. And after that, the snowmen. Those creepy interlopers, loitering on lawns with their mocking grins . . . I swear, come February I'm going to buy a flamethrower and melt the bastards down.

Speaking of violence, yesterday morning at the place where I get my tea and sometimes my breakfast two guys nearly started a fistfight. At 7:30 in the morning. I mean, seriously. That's way too early to be throwing punches. Wait until after lunch, at least.

Things you may not have seen:

Mr. Dan Kelly has the awful truth about Hell. Also, I think he wants me to kill a barber.

Speaking of killing things . . . There was a time when I would have liked a patron, in the Renaissance sense. My skin is crawling away. (Via everybody.)

Hm, perfect murder? I suspect everyone in Veronica's Criminology class. Piz may be cuddly but maybe a scary boyfriend is better sometimes? (This paragraph has been encoded.)

HBO is making Preacher into a TV series. Considering how bad it was in comics form, I don't expect that this will help them regain any credibility.

Pitchfork interviews Tom Waits. In case you haven't figgered it out, he's got a new album out--technically, a new boxed set. You know you want it.

While you're buying stuff, I would like to note that the first season of "St. Elsewhere" is now out on DVD. If you've seen the show, you know you want this; if you haven't, you need to. It's got Denzel before he was famous! Ed Begley Jr. before he was old! William Daniels before he was on "Boy Meets World"! Howie Mandel before he was annoying! OK, scratch that last one, because it's possible that Howie Mandel was even MORE annoying back in the day. Anyway, I remember this show as strange, funny, startling, and engrossing. I can't wait to see how it holds up.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

The Gemini Society

The Gemini Society
Originally uploaded by Snurri.
"At the intersection of Victoria Avenue and South Garden Street, in the heart of Little Uganda, stands the Southwestern branch of the Gemini Society (AKA the Sorcerer's Benevolent Society, AKA the Urban Magical Defense League). Since 1947 this branch has been headed by the hydromancer Gwandoya Kyoga. Kyoga is known to some as 'Old Waterballs' due to his penchant for levitating globes of water from the lake (complete with fish and, on one occassion, a frightened swimmer), and floating them above the city streets like so many bubbles before letting them splash into the pond in nearby Entebbe Park. . . . The Geminis, particularly since the Banishing, have styled themselves as an unofficial complement to the city's police force. Although their efforts have benefited the city on more than one occasion, the municipal authorities have never been sanguine with their relationship. It was this tension which led Mayor Faldbakken III to rather infamously label them 'magilantes' after the upheaval of the May Day Earthquake (see p.574-9) . . . Kyoga had a long-standing feud with Walter Wenstrup which only ended with the latter's disappearance. Many of Kyoga's followers believed that the hydromancer would succeed Wenstrup in his mystical post, a faith which has only been partly shaken by the failure of a new Sorcerer Supreme to materialize. . . . Membership in the Gemini Society is by invitation only, and only in recent years have women been invited to join--chief among those is Wen Ming, the floramancer credited with finally solving the city's food shortage problems." (p.107)

Can't Stop Posting

Over lunch I went over to pick up my paycheck at the temp office. I was in the elevator going up, doing my usual reach-back to my backpack pocket which held the book in which I had placed my timecard, when the book (True Grizz, for the curious; not as good as his book on elephants, but good) fell out onto the floor. The older man next to me in the elevator said: "Dropping all that knowledge!" The correct response, of course, would have been something about kicking the new science, but I was too busy laughing. I'm betting he didn't have a clue as to why he was so funny.

In other news, new superhero to debut in spring.

Where Have You Gone, Phil Hartman?

Chess players to face anti-doping measures.


This Post Would Like To Apologize For Itself

I think I've figured out why my pens sometimes explode on planes. If I'm using the pen when we take off, this never happens. If I uncap the pen to write something while we are at 30,000 feet, I almost always end up with ink all over my hands, my manuscript, my flotation device. (Does that sound dirty to anyone else?) It's the cabin pressure, stupid. Probably I could switch to some other sort of pen and solve the problem (I use a Pilot Precise Rolling Ball, Fine Point and I hope that news will make your day complete), but I have no plans to do so.

A good weekend. Walked the dogs with my brother on Thursday morning, saw the deer who've been hanging out behind my parents' house, mashed and mixed the potatoes and then loudly took credit for them. (Mom doesn't mind. Really.) Dinner--I don't remember what we talked about, really, but it was good food and my uncle's girlfriend and her sister were there, which I think was good for all of us. Talked to the Lexington posse despite bad reception. Had lunch Friday at Haddayr's, where Arie and Éiden demonstrated a new game called "Fall down!" which was just about what you would expect, and Haddayr was patient while Jan and I talked comics. Rode the light rail for the first time, down to the fancy new Minneapolis library where I was able to hang with Haddayr, Alan, Kristin, and Lena. Saw "For Your Consideration" (dark, but good) and the "Baseball as America" exhibit at the History Center with my folks. Talked a lot about the book and all the stuff happening with that until I started to feel very boring, but what the hell; I'll never have another first novel, and I'm going to stay excited about it. Ate well, as did the dogs, who scored a tupperware container of leftover lefse while everyone was gone on Saturday afternoon. Movies (re-)watched on decadent expanded basic cable: "Love, Actually" and "Bring It On." I make no apologies.

I ended up taking yesterday off, and last night finished up Chapter Twelve, which is crappy. I know it's crappy, but it's just going to have to be crappy for the time being. Before it can get better I'll need to a) visit some actual salt mines (hopefully during my European visit with Mr. Moles) and b) figure out exactly what I'm foreshadowing. If there's one thing I've figured out about writing, at least the way that I do it, it's that sometimes I just need to get something on the page. It doesn't have to be perfect; in fact it never will be. But it can be made better later, once I've figured out what the hell I'm doing. (This is what I tell myself.)

Things to see: Sex Advice from a D&D Player. A DISTURBING promo for the Philips Bodygroom. Eddie Campbell has a blog! (Via Comics Worth Reading.) Rupert Gee bothers people; a classic Letterman bit. (Dude. Last night Kate Winslet and Tom Waits were on Dave. Greatest talk show lineup EVER. Best lines, unattributed: "Cameron Diaz can eat me under the table." "They basically have a choice between throwing up or getting hit by a car.") And finally, for feminists of all genders: a big heaping helping of What. The. Fuck. Roger Miller is scratching his head in his grave, still.