Monday, April 28, 2008

Surgical Strikes are not Performed by Doctors

Victory is ours once again! We returned to the scene of Friday's battle against the buckthorn and slew great swathes of the enemy. I personally eliminated five hostile battalion commanders* and their attendants. I could not have performed my duties without the guidance and training provided by our most excellent sergeant nor without my stalwart comrades in arms.

Stomping through the battlefield with saw and clippers reminded me of my childhood spent stomping through imaginary battlefields with sticks and ... other sticks. Every moment I smelled cedar, I was propelled back through the corridors of memory. My brothers and I roamed all over the fields and forests of Door County. I could feel the tensions of the last few weeks fading away with each intake of breath. Every squelchy step in the flooded forest left angry emotions stuck in the mud and detritus. Every buckthorn hewn down was a satisfying accomplishment, something that has been particularly absent in my life of late.

*These were fruiting buckthorn, about 1-2.5 inches in width. Without my dad's knee-high boots, I would not have been able to get to three of them because they were too close to the overflowing creek. Thanks, Dad!

Back from Patrol

I wish I could have written this report yesterday but my unit was out on a long range reconnaissance patrol, attempting to locate any further buckthorn staging grounds in Newport State Park. The invaders are very crafty and look similar to a local species which can only be distinguished from the hated enemy by its reddish bark. This is a source of consternation for me as my colorblindness hinders my attempts to root out and destroy the vile buckthorn. I have my teammates verify all of my potential targets. It's the only way to be sure.

Having identified a range of deadly targets, my team and I were dismayed to find out that we must return to Saturday's field of battle. The word in the barracks says that our defeated enemy was able to summon reinforcements. The schedule is grueling and the fight is epic and yet, I weary of the struggle. I wish to be home and warm and fed. The fight is not over and will not be over before I am called away from this theater.

We march in twenty minutes.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

The Victorious Return to Base Camp

We march back to camp cold, wet and hungry but with our heads held high and our hearts full of victory! The vile invading buckthorn was caught unaware of our attack and scattered to the elements. With saw and snips, we cleared swathes of hideous groves and horrid stands. We sprayed the stumps with a herculean solution of blue gunk so that the regenerative properties of the plant would not allow it to rise again like the hydra.

We struggled for hours and suffered some causalties. Deer and duck had been sent in to scout the enemy position, but did not survive their mission. We were only able to retrieve their tags, so little of their corporeal presence remained. Their sacrifice was not in vain, as we were able to clear large areas of the menace known only as "that plant we're supposed to cut and spray."

Long live the fighters!

Weekend Retreat

I am currently using a Compaq computer to access the interwebs. This computer is a good example of Compaq's line of no longer seen products. It could probably do with a backup and then formatting to remove all these bizarrely unhelpful utilities. Whatever, it's not mine.

I hope to write some this weekend. My hosts and I had plans to go engage some buckthorn in a vicious action over at Whitefish Dunes State Park, but since the temperature is currently hovering around freezing, our attack has been temporarily delayed. Given the wind and the fearsome weather predicted, our attack may be postponed indefinitely. I find myself unprepared for subzero temperatures and snow. I was told to expect colder weather but not winter weather. Perhaps I should have contacted our man in Michigan.

Crapola. I have just received word from my commanding officer that the attack is on since the buckthorn would never expect an attack in such weather. Hopefully, I will return alive and with all my fingers and toes.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Uwe Bool Gets Burned by Blizzard

This may be old news to anyone who follows Uwe Boll, but I have lately been out of touch with my normal habits. Apparently, Blizzard told Boll that they had no interest in collaborating on a World of Warcraft movie with him. Which is a shame because I would have gone to see that and am not likely to go see a serious or faithful adaptation of that game.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

I've Abandoned My BLOG!

Not really, but There Will Be Blood comes out on DVD today and I could think of no better explanation of my recent vacations from bloggy-land. Anyway, World of Warcraft is now giving me splitting headaches, which could be related to my three year old glasses or could be caffeine withdrawal symptoms. Probably both.

Expect more blogging later, especially after I file a few year's worth of tax returns.

You heard me.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Totally Tarantula Tuesday: With Less Autism

Helob, the Tarantula of Undefined Species, molted lasted night. I noticed that she/he/it/spider had flipped over onto his/her/its/spider's back and immediately sniffed the top of the cage. I have heard that tarantulas reek horribly when they die and thought that maybe she/he/it/spider had decided to leave this existence in a cartoonishly melodramatic fashion. The cage did not smell of dead tarantula, incidentally I have no idea what that smells like, and Helob did wiggle her/his/its/spider's legs when I brought the enclosure down to the floor.

Having once read that tarantulas needs a lot of humidity and no crickets in their cages when they molt, I immediately put fresh water in the dish, added a second dish of water, and dribbled water on the glass sides of the ten-gallon aquarium in which Helob lives. Over the next couple hours, Helob wiggled free of his/her/its/spider's old exoskeleton and is now happily hiding in the corner of the aquarium. I think she/he/it/spider may be feeding on the remaining juice in the husk, as I have heard tarantulas do that.

It will take several days for Helob's new exoskeleton to reach full strength and I plan on purchasing a smaller enclosure and filling it with clean sand and a small burrow. Or maybe I will just get clean sand and remove the old dirt from the current cage. Both of these ideas require me to remove Helob from her/his/its/spider's home temporarily and to do that, I must either pick up a spider with INCH-LONG FANGS or shovel Helob out with a bowl or something and hope he/she/it/spider doesn't crawl out and escape under my stove or something. The last thing this country needs is another Cirith Ungol. Especially in my apartment.

Here are a couple videos:
Helob is brown but you get the idea:

That same species has a dinner date:

Did you notice how it had one foot on the web? Terrestrial tarantulas apparently have abysmal eyesight and use the vibrations caused by moving food on the webs to locate and catch prey.

Here is a dumbass kid:

Monday, April 07, 2008

That's News to Me

Recent developments in my life have led me to quest for a new job. I am looking for an editorial or copyediting type job in any city in the US. Hell, anywhere in the world would be fine with me.

I am specifically willing to move to Bratislava, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, and Portland.

UPDATE: In response to mdhatter, I am finishing off my certificate in Editing and Proofreading at the USDA Graduate School and would like to use those skills in my new job. Any company that writes anything for public distribution should have someone capable of preventing goofs and errors that seem acceptable but then wind up on Jay Leno's segment of newspaper mistakes. I have been working for a magazine and am not using these skills as much as I was promised or would like.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Did I Miss It?


I pranked my boss yesterday. Well, when I say pranked, I really mean that I learned that I had fucked another assignment into the dustbin of failure. This one is entirely my fault and doesn't help my track record. I remember when I was reliable. What the shit happened to me?

Well, anyway, this shit is hilarious. BEARS!* THE BUKKIT HAZ BEN FOWND!

For those who can't tell, and I was one of them at first, the 'lolling' going on in that thread, and perhaps others, may have been part of an April Fool's joke by Blizzard.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Splitting Hairs

The last time I cut my hair was in July, shortly before my birthday. I had been keeping it short for four years because I despised the eighteen dollar haircuts available to me at the local barber shop. After every cut, I felt ripped off and generic. The moment after I first shaved my head, I felt liberated from some stupid icon of heirarchy and social dominance. I had made a choice to shave my head for no reason beyond financial but the act was almost violently independent. Most men with shorn locks have no ability to grow them or have some contractual obligation requiring their hair be no longer than an eighth of an inch. I was somehow different because I had fantastic hair and chose to go without.

For the first two months of uninterrupted hair, I was simply too busy. Distracted by work and the vagaries of chance and piques of heart, I forgot about trimming my hair. My hair grew out and quickly looked shaggy and goofy. I thought about cutting it frequently. I disliked it. The hair stuck up and out in odd places, but was still too short to control with a brush.

After four months of hair, I looked almost revolutionary with a wild mane of hair and goatee. It was fun having a wild and unruly mop of hair again. I could only exert a mild control over the riotous strands. I declared that I would cut it when the weather turned warm in the spring. Washington is no city for long hair, the humidity and heat are a heavy curse.

In the fifth month of hair, I learned that a friend's child had been diagnosed with kidney cancer. The prognosis was good, the tumor had been found in time to avoid a lengthy chemo treatment and multiple surgeries. His parents and doctors decided that a four month run of chemo would be the safest option. The little guy is not yet two years old. When I saw him two weeks ago, his thin toddler's hair had started to fall out. Too young to talk about his pain, it was only expressed in his eyes.

My mother called me in early March to ask if she could donate my old hair, cut off in 1999, to an organization that makes wigs for children living through chemo treatments. I agreed and will be donating my current shaggy hair as soon as it is available.

This Would Have Been Funnier

If I didn't know someone that has tried to screw me over with a similar tactic. He failed, of course, because he neglected to account for my considerable intellect.

Rule Number X*N: Don't use your first attempt at forgery as evidence in a professional environment.