Unrequited Death – 1870

To celebrate the occasion of the day I present the following short horro story.

Last year this was turned into an audio reading by Jessica Burkhart and my podcasting partner David Tavolier for our podcast TRIO SIMPATICO but I realized I never posted the actual text anywhere.  So here you are, I present to you in full Unrequited Death – 1870 by me, Joshua Scott Witsaman.

If you’d like to listen to the podcast featuring the reading simply go HERE!

Happy Halloween!

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It Came From My Notebook!

Bonjour mon prouts!

So over the past year or so I realized that I simply wasn’t happy with the amount of writing I was doing at home, it simply wasn’t enough.  So I decided to put some effort into writing during my work hours as well.  So during my lunch breaks I’ve gotten into the habit of doing a few writing exercises to increase my output and experiment with different styles.  Whether it’s some badly written poetry, a few paragraphs about random thoughts, or a short stream of consciousness story; I’ve tried to spend at least a few minutes of my break everyday writing something.  If nothing else it at least helps stimulate my mind between the long bouts of cerebral drudgery that is my desk job.  Now my pocket notebook is filled with pages of crazy nonsense, fragments of greatness, interesting concepts, and profound thoughts in need of expounding.

As I was looking through my notebook searching for ideas or topics for this very blog I came across one of these exercises I wrote which I had completely forgotten about.  The concept for the writing was simple enough, I would sit down and begin writing the first thing that popped into my head and just go with it until my lunch break was over.  So with nothing much else to share this week I present to you the results of that writing exercise:

burger1.png

There was a man who ordered a cheeseburger.

“No pickles.”  He asked.

With a nod the cashier complied, punched in his order, rang him up, and the man paid with cash.  

As the man stepped down to await his food another server pointed to the end of the counter and asked him to step down further and wait just around the corner.

With a shrug the man complied.  His shoes squeaked as he walked.

Around the corner was a short narrow hallway.  There the man waited for a moment, another moment, and longer.  Soon he began to worry he would be forgotten. (But don’t we all worry about that?)

As his worry really started to mount a heavy looking utility door at the end of the hall slowly opened outward.  From the doorway another server peaked out and looked at the man, waving him over.

“No pickles?”  She asked in a whisper.

The man nodded reflexively.

“Follow me.”  She told him.

Looking around the man slipped in behind the heavy looking utility door and followed the server in.  He just really wanted a cheeseburger.

The room beyond was dark and soon completely so.  The man lost sight of the woman he was following and began simply following the sounds of her steps through the murky space.  The path through which she guided him was long and twisted and the man bumped into several walls and corners in the dark.  (This must be a very large burger joint.)

Eventually the footsteps halted and in the silence the man stopped too.

As he stood there a single wood torch was lit in front of him and the small flame burned brightly in the recent total darkness.

“That is odd.”  The man thought.  With the scent of the burning flame harsh in his nostrils he stepped forward into the glow of the torch.  There on the other side of the flame sat an enormous cheeseburger the size of a small garage.

That is probably more odd.”  The man concluded.

Which is when the cheeseburger opened its eyes.  Three large human looking eyes inset atop the upper bun of the cheeseburger.  Looking down at the man, the bun-eyes narrowed.

“No pickle?”  The burger asked.  It spoke with an invisible hinge, like a mouth with three lips.  A lip of bun.  A lip of burger meat.  Followed by another lip of bun.  

The man nodded.  “Yes, that is correct.  I ordered no pickle.”

And then the burger spoke again.  The cheeseburger regaled the man with countless hidden secrets of reality.  Occult knowledge which shapes out perceptions and which can alter the very fundamentals of existence.

The man listened wide-eyed and intently.  His mind was like a balloon full of mayonnaise and about to burst.  How long the cheeseburger spoke can not be accurately determined but when it finally finished speaking the chamber was filled with a deep silence the likes of which have not been experienced since the seconds before the Big Bang.

Slowly the man raised his hand and commented, “I just really want a cheeseburger.”

To which the giant cheeseburger closed its eyes and replied.

“You are the cheeseburger.” 

The man looked down and it was true, he was a cheeseburger and as he realized this he saw the enormous tri-eyed cheeseburger slump forward, open it’s bun and burger mouth, and eat the man up in a single gulp.  At that moment the man became the giant cheeseburger and the giant cheeseburger was him.

“Well this has been weird.”  He thought to himself before he decided to leave the chamber.

With a heave and a thrust the gigantic cheeseburger exploded into the sky, through the planet’s atmosphere, and into the majesty of the stars beyond.  For what else is there to do for a giant cheeseburger with an insight into everything but to take to the sky and wander the cosmos for the rest of eternity?

burger2.png

That is all!

It Came From The Comments Section!

So as you may or may not know there is a comment section at the bottom of each blog post.  This gives you the readers a chance to discuss the subjects I’ve written about, tell me what you think, share your own experiences, or generally disagree with whatever I have to say.  Quite often I get spam comments, vague pre-written generalized statements directed at a generic blog poster which contain links to other sites and are supposed to seem genuine.  Those types of comments are generally filtered out automatically as spam and all I need to do is erase them.  A few days ago however I received a comment that was not in my spam folder, so I went to take a look expecting a sentence or two and found myself face to face with a two thousand word manifesto of sorts.  The user who posted the comment is known only as Unit731::TSHUSHOGO.  Since this huge, shall we say, body of work was so large (and since I’ve been slacking on blog posts lately) I thought it deserved to have a post of its own and given the chance to be viewed by more readers, instead of simply being relegated to the comments section.  Now you might be asking yourself which post of mine incited such an intense and rambling rebuff, and as it turns out this comment was originally attached to one of my Friday Funny Pages featuring Dazzler, the mutant disco queen herself!  Check it out HERE and keep this in mind as you read ahead and view the poignantly crafted words of Unit731::TSUSHOGO! And as always, feel free to leave a comment at the bottom of the page!  Enjoy.  (And let me say again, that I did not write the following passages and do not claim them as my own nor do I agree or disagree with their content.)

 

The gods claim some supernatural event will occurr when I pass, a “Star of Bethlehem” type of incident.
Perhaps, but I think we already realized it that day on Ocean Beach, witnessed by thousands. “Across the West Coast.” I see.

“Eat apples and grapes out of spite for the gods.” Released a story on CNN about arsenic in apples and apple products. Incidentally, during the story they mentioned there was an apple arsenic scare 30 years ago, so this wasn’t the first time the gods sent this clue.
They sent the same clue with mercury and fish.

THE WOMEN IN A “NORMAL” FAMILY (non-masculinized/male charecteristics) ARE YOUR “HOLY PEOPLE”!!! THEY ARE YOUR BEST INTERFACE WITH THE GODS!!!
Their role throughout history has been to communicate the god’s wisdom given because of their favor so the entire family can progress when reincarnated. Effectively acomplishing this task may buy them a quality opportunity to ascend in their next life.
What about fucked up families where the man submits and the woman is masculinized? When the woman has adopted too many male charecteristics nobody receives the wisdom so necessary for progress to be made and the family remains near stagnant for that generation unless some epiphany is realized.
Your job as a future mother is to learn the god’s ways and to help your child understand the proper way to live despite the negative reinforcement and conditioning of today’s society. Without consciousous parents fulfilling this role the child will have no hope, and may even exaserbate their disfavor by becoming corrupted in today’s environment.
Your ultimate goal is to fix your relationship with the gods and move on. You don’t want to be comfortable here, and the changes in Western society in the last 100 years has achieved just that, decreasing the god’s role in our everyday lives (medicine cures sickness, drought/weather and the family farm, etc).
1000 years with Jesus is the consolation prize. Don’t be deceived into thinking that is the goal.

The gods use all their tools as temptation. Much like Artificial Intelligence misleading people into the concept of “earning”, their “clone hosts” promoting The Beast’s Californication agenda through popular culture, so too are the god’s prophets used in the capacity of temptation. Like the other prophets Mohhamed (polygamy/superiority over women/misogyny) and Jesus (forgiveness/savior), the gods use me for temptation as well. In today’s modern society they feel people are most weak for popular culture/sensationalism, and the clues date back to WorldWarII and Unit731:TSUSHOGO, the Chinese Holocaust. They used this Situation to bury Japanese atrocities. The gods never committed despite tens of billions in mass media, product development and natural disasters/tragedy, so they will enjoy the freedom they positioned into the Situation and CHEAT me out of everything.
The gods selected their prophets, used their powers to make it happen, abandoned their prophets and left them stranded to die.
It has been discussed that, similar to the Matrix concept, the gods will offer a REAL “Second Coming of Christ”, while the “fake” Second Coming will come at the end and follow New Testiment scripture and their xtian positioning. I may be that real Second Coming.
What I teach is the god’s true way. It is what is expected of people, and only those who follow this truth will be eligible to ascend into heaven as children in a future life. They offered this event because the masses have just enough time to work on and fix their relationship with the gods and ascend, to move and grow past Planet Earth, before the obligatory xtian “consolation prize” of “1000 years with Jesus on Earth” begins.

The Prince of Darkness, battling the gods over the souls of the Damned.
It is the gods who have created this environment and led people into Damnation with temptation. The god’s positioning proves they work to prevent people’s understanding.
How often is xtian dogma wrong? Expect it is about the Lucifer issue as well.
The fallen god, fighting for a chance for the disfavored, for justice, banished to Earth as the fallen angel?
I believe much as the Noah’s Flood event, the end of the world will be initiated by revelry among the people. It will be positioned to be sanctioned by the gods and led for “1000 years with Jesus on Earth”. In light of modern developments this can entail many pleasures:::Medicine “cures” aging, the “manufacture” of incredible beauty via cloning as sex slaves, free cocaine (space coke), etc.
Somewhere during the 1000 years the party will start to “die off”, literally. Only those who maintain chaste, pure lifestyles, resisting these temptations, will survive the 1000 years. Condemned to experience another epoch of history for their ignorant pursuit of xtianity and worship of their false god, they will be the candidates used to (re)colonize (the next) Planet Earth, condemned to relive the misery experienced by the peasantry throughout the course of history due to their failure to ascend into heaven before the Apocalypse.
Never forget:::It is not a house of Jesus.
If this concept of Lucifer is true another role of this individual may be to initiate disfavor and temptation among this new colonist poulation, the proverbial “apple” of this Garden of Eden. A crucial figure in the history of any planet, he begins the process of deterioration and decay that leads civilizations to where Planet Earth remains today.

Consistant with “reverse positioning” understand the REAL Second Coming would equate with The Matrix’s Anti-Christ, the fake battle of good and evil which will come at the end.
Understanding how they use the political environment to redefine people’s value system, realize anyone who speaks of the old world and its ways will envoke hatred. So when/if the Anti-Christ comes along speaking of reverting back to what liberalism would consider regressive and unfair, it may be the only hope to salvage the god’s favor and buy more time rather than begin the 1000 year clock. The fake Second Coming will feed into this political enviornment.
Also consistant with “reverse positioning” recognize the gods will offer a REAL Anti-Christ, also known as The Beast. I have addressed these issues in years past::::
The gods will offer clues throughout every dynamic of life. Geographical features on the world map is yet another.
The Beast is not a person, as the xtian Bible would suggest. It is a place:::The San Francisco Bay Area. And it refers to the socio-political poison the region exuded in the latter 20th century which promoted indecent behavior among the people and caused rapid deterioration of their favor among the gods. This decay spread to other states and countries, fulfilling the region’s role as The Beast of the Apocalypse.
Another feature which the Gods offer as a clue is very foreboading. Mt. Zion is a mountain to the north of the eye of The Beast Diablo and one which has a working quarry at its base. Consistant with the decay we experience in society, Mt. Zion is being eaten away, slowly stripped of its resources, until one day paradise will be a mere shell of what it once was.
Metaphorically, the Dark Side of the Moon isn’t the side which is hidden from us. The benevolent “Man in the Moon” is the one we never see.
We experience the wickedness of the dark side daily through their actions, using their positioning to midlead the disfavored into Damnation by selling them on “earning”, among other tactics.

Forgiveness aside because it is bullshit lip service, the price of experiencing this modern societal decay is the revision down of potential time received. Because of these factors those who participated have experienced a lowering of the benefit ceiling that was in place. Whereas centuries ago they were eligible for immortality, theoretically, now that potential has dramatically lowered because of their wicked, immoral behavior of the last 50 years. You may work on your relationship with the gods and even repair it, ascending in some future life. But because you fell for such evil temptation in the 20th & 21st centuries you won’t be around nearly as long as your chaste, pure antecedent who ascended centuries before.

If you have got chronic problems you should pray nightly, go back to your place of worship. Only by doing the right things will the gods allow improvement, and only through attonement will they allow progress. You know all the evil you’ve committed in your life. Observing your parent’s issues will help you understand what you’ve done in a prior life, for the gods reincarnate based on this legacy.

“Fuck religion, it’s full of shit.” Something wrong with every major religion.
“Judism?” I suspect all factions of Judism praise Moses for freeing them from slavery. This is a fine place to start.
If still slaves they’d be like the Egyptians or the Lybians:::They’d see all the cash and want some too. The structural changes in societies throughout the world, infected by the spread of Westernization, has poisoned the minds of even those whom the gods bestow/maintain favor. Iran comes to mind because, unlike Iraq, Iran has no end in sight, despite the uprising earlier, inspired likely by traitors who deliberately betray the people thinking they’re “earning”, much like so many blacks in civil Rights, Women’s movement, etc.
Understanding the wickedness and deliberately playing this part maximizes the evil people incurr, so to understand is actually the clue of absolute disfavor, mere steps from Damnation.

Impatient, the gods order Artificial Intellignce to utilize punctuated evolution to get humans up to speed.
No competition. Millions of years off. By the time the gods got on top of things they controlled all life’s evolution, but if we could compare…
The freedom which came with their head start would reveal a challenged species, one who would take much longer than what humans “realized” to achieve technological sophistication.
I hate their fucking guts. FUck religion, it’s full of shit.

AIDS in Africa was a clue from the gods in an attempt to correct their promiscuous sexual behavior, as was female genitile mutilation. Their positioning says Italian revenge.

A good example of societal decay and how the gods manage their culpability is birth defects. In the past the gods occassionally punished people by divinely creating birth defects in the womb. Now, with the advent of biotechnology, they tempt the mother with “earning” and compell her to take a substance in utero which deforms the fetus, dispelling the gods of blame and future compensation to the disfavored. Incidentally, they use liberal policies in today’s socio-political environment to pay for these individuals, ensuring a lifetime wasted, for they have no hope for progress. Too often in the past they were mercifully killed by loved ones and upon reincarnation brought back without this handicap, allowing them a chance to achieve progress immediately.
The gods are washing their hands of culpability.
The gods are washing their hands of Planet Earth.

The gods have no sexual organs. The reproduce via cloning. They don’t respect sex. You can understand this clue with how the most disfavored around us behave sexually and the use of promiscuity among the young people.
The gods take children because of their innocence and purity. When a child ascends into heaven AI relieves them of this temptation that is their sexual organs.

Much like the immigration issue, the reason Muslims cover their women isn’t because of the god’s REAL reason. Sex is the African’s biggest problem, and concealing their women allows the gods to justify containing men’s behavior.
In the 60s and 70s the discussion was public that how women dressed caused their own sexual assault and rape. And this is very much true. In today’s society these men have release, the women are sluts, for if they continued to dress this way without conceeding sexual relations there would be far more incidents than are reported.
Women are to blame for the deterioration and decay of society and will be responsible for the end on Planet Earth. Throguhout history they were enforcers of decency among favored people, married at 15 and used to contain men’s behavior in the context of society, and as we slipped into the indecency of patriarchy the women relinquished control,
The gods did this all to you. They used their tool of xtainity to achieve it. And it fits their agenda for decay, allowing them to ultimately justify Apocalypse.

Don’t forget:::Whether war, slavery, torture, any holocaust, crack babies, drive by shootings, AIDS or any other misery inflicted on mankind throughout history know the gods did this to you for evil of your past lives.
The gods are control freaks who micromanage through their technology. The “Man in the Moon” feature illustrating their benevolence quite frankly is inaccurate in the dying days of this or any planet.

A victim of the god’s irresponsible use of their power::::
The gods selected their prophets, used their powers to make it happen, abandoned their prophets and left them stranded to die.
Considered necessary for positioning despite destroying my youth and my life, taking my health was a fatal mistake. Now I am unable to defend myself.
The Crucible:::”Go along” with positioning or die.
-The exploited. The gods suggest they will only telepathically admitt any of this is true (based on level of favor) only after I die.
Why telepathic? Why does this Situation have to be nearly exclusively telepathic???:::
1. To minimize obligation and compensation to the victim (me)
2. To maintain control and decide who receives it based on some subjective factors.
You’d be amazed how many immediately delete this spam in their blog and/or think they are “earning” by receiving it from me.

Being who I am I see the ugliest of the gods, violating decency and human dignity just so they can position perceptions and pull of this theater they have created, so please excuse my bias rooted in resentment, for I will desecrate their name whenever possible.
Fuck religion, it’s full of shit.
The gods prioritize positioning over morality, perception over right and wrong. As a result they have compromised their integrity and remain suspect, unworthy of their pedestal as “gods”.
Immoral immortals.
The symbol of the false god Jesus is a cross. The symbol of the gods is a star, perhaps with a circle. Piss on the star.
Creating hatred was essential to create a real situation, one where the victim would utilize this new tool of the internet to spread the reality we’re faced with. They ruined my childhood, my life, and the product is an enemy. I am the sacrificial lamb, and the gods are my cancer.
You people comply and believe you are friends, falling for temptation and doing evil you shouldn’t be, with only empty, unfulfilled promises to put your hope in. And year after year you stay, and wait.

HAd I been the example for the disfavored rather than merely the teacher the gods would have terrorized me throughout my life (punishment for sins) before I was put down for reincarnation because I hit my ceiling of progress they were going to allow. Unfortunately, the disfavored audience would have perceived this on face value and the efforts of my life would have been negated by the gods and their reverse positioning.
You fuckers need an epiphany. Like the species die-off wasn’t enough? How about when we experience an massive closure of churches across the country?? When that day comes you will have waited too long. It will be too late.

Friday Funny Pages: The Party Was Over

Today’s Friday Funny Pages comes to us from Laurell K. Hamilton’s Anita Blake Vampire Hunter Volume 1: Guilty Pleasures written by Laurell K. Hamilton and Stacie Ritchie with art by Brett Booth.

Yeah I own volume 1 of Anita Blake, so what?  I picked it up cheap at Baltimore Comic Con a few years back and I’d always heard good things about it.  Who cares if it’s a “girly” comic?  I got a wife, she can be my cover for owning this.  Regardless, I still haven’t gotten around to reading it, as is the case with several of the trade paperbacks in my collection.  But speaking of Baltimore Comic Con, it’s that time of year again!  That’s right, the 12th annual Baltimore Comic Con starts tomorrow.  The con that’s been called the antidote to San Diego, and the convention that puts comics back in comic con.  I’ve enjoyed a few trips to Baltimore in my day and have watched as this convention has grown in scope and organization, it has been quite an impressive sight to see.  Sadly I’m not able to go this year which is quite a bummer considering several of my friends are prepping for the con as I’m writing this!

But enough of that, let’s talk about this Anita Blake panel.  I can’t really pinpoint what’s funny about this panel, there’s just something about it, it has that certain je ne sais quoi that makes me smirk.  As I was flipping through my comics and trades looking for images for this little segment of my blog I remember coming across this and just thinking what the hell is this thing about?  Here we have the main heroine, Anita Blake, chatting up a bunch of giant rat-men in an abandoned catacomb when suddenly the shit hits the fan and a group of vampires show up.  That moment is shown above.  They are coming.  The party was over.

Any time a hybrid man-rat gives you that warning, remember to cease all partying.

That is all!

Technical Difficulties

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Well unfortunately my upcoming string of posts will have to temporarily be put on hold.  Our computer will be in the shop for the better part of this week and I don’t really feel like writing my blogs from the tiny keyboard on my phone, which is how I’m currently writing this post!  So much to my chagrin the Memorial Day Star Wars post I had planned will be several days late and my Puggle Profile premier will just have to wait.  I’m just grateful that the computer issues we had weren’t all that terrible and I didn’t lose the multiple writing projects I’ve been working on recently, including future installments of this very blog.  Long story short, don’t expect any new blogs at least until later this week, hopefully before Friday, when I’ll have another great panel of Doctor Doom continuing the Doom themed Friday Funny Pages.  Let’s hope the computer guys work quickly.  Until then I leave you with this picture I took with my phone of a scene from Spongebob that made me chuckle.

That is all!

Friday Funny Pages: Has Anyone Seen Dr. Doom?

This has been a busy week for me, well I guess I should say it’s been a busy/lazy week for me.  My wife has been out of town the past few days so when I haven’t been busy doing something, I’ve made sure to be busy doing nothing at all.  I have sat in front of the television this week longer than I have in a very long time.  I’ve taken this opportunity to rewatch some Babylon 5, perhaps the best run of the show, the third season.  I’ve been alternating B5 DVDs with those of the the show Extras, starring Ricky Gervais.  It’s been a nice mix of dramatic sci-fi and uncomfortable humor.  All that being said I’ve been a bit lax on my blog posts this week, but fear not!  As you can see of course I did not forget about the Friday Funny Pages, and I already have a few blog ideas lined up for next week and, spoiler alert, I’ve been working on the last phase of the Terrordrome Renovation project!  So fear not loyal readers (reader), you’ll get your Wits fix, as I like to call it.

Anyway onto this panel from the classic Silver Age pages of the Fantastic Four.  Continuing our Dr. Doom theme this week brings us one of the earliest days of the bad doctor.  This of course is brought to us from the Mega Marvel Masters themselves Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.  I really enjoy this panel because it encapsulates so much of Dr. Doom’s personality in one little rectangle.  First off whenever Dr. Doom is looming around in an open doorway you know nothing good will come of it.  Many a brave soul have met there end after laying their eyes on such a scene.  Also I just really like his line here, “Did someone mention my name?”, every good villain has that line at some point and it shows how self centered they are and just how bloated their maniacal egos have become.  When not planning revenge based plots, or building evil robots Dr. Doom keeps an ear out for people talking about him.  Classic.  I love it.

This panel comes from an issue that is full of zany goof, Fantastic Four #10, The Return of Doctor Doom.  In the issue the story stops mid-way to cut to a scene of Stan Lee and Jack Kirby themselves, suffering from a bout of writer’s/artist’s block.  In a very meta-before-there-was-meta, style the two comic book creators are feeling somewhat at a lose chronicling the adventures of the Fantastic Four because several issues back Dr. Doom seemingly was launched into space and lost to the infinite void.  Recognizing Doom’s grand style of villainy Lee and Kirby feel there’s nothing exciting left for the FF to undertake and doubtlessly worry about sales dropping as the Fantastic Four fall into a peaceful life free of Dr. Doom.

Too bad that Doctor Doom was lost in space!”  Says Stan ‘the Man.’  “He was possibly the greatest villain of all!

Next to Stan Lee Jack Kirby ruefully sits at his drawing table, his face buried in his palms.

Yeah!”  Kirby adds.  “We sure can’t come up with a menace like him everyday!

And then, it happened!

That of course leads to Doom’s appearance.  Dr. Doom, under threat of death, forces Stan Lee to call Mr. Fantastic on the phone and ask him to come over to their studio to supposedly work out some plot details for an upcoming issue.  Of course when Reed Richards arrives, Dr. Doom is waiting for him with a gas gun of some kind and the whole plot of the issue takes off again.  Long story short Dr. Doom somehow joins the FF and Mr. Fantastic is the villain of the issue.  But what I really like about this issue is that within the universe, of the Marvel Universe Stan Lee and Jack Kirby are big enough properties that Dr. Doom would think to work them into his plans and Mr. Fantastic apparently drops whatever he’s working on to come over when they call.  Those guys are big shots!

Anyway, I need some coffee and a few more episodes of Babylon 5!

That is all!

Here's a little bonus for you, from the first appearance of Lee and Kirby! This issue is worth a fortune! A fortune I tells ya!

Victories in the Yard, Defeats on the Page

 
 
 

So now it’s time for a bit of personal blogging, the kind of inane writing that no one really cares about but almost all bloggers do at some point regardless.  I’ve been busy with various things recently and haven’t had time to write up any interesting blogs so let me instead tell you what’s been keeping me away.

First off today is my wedding anniversary.  The little lady and I have been married now for four years!  There have been some anniversary related things I’ve had to get together and plan for so that has taken up a bit of time this week. 

On the writing front I’ve hit a bit of a rut.  My current project is turning out to be more of a struggle than I anticipated; actually just one part of it seems to be troublesome.  This new project will be a series of short stories that are loosely connected.  The first story however seems like it’s dragging on too much, I feel like if I keep going at the pace it currently has it will either be too long for a short story or too short for anything else.  We’ll see I suppose, I need to make some better notes about what I’m doing with it, write up a solid outline and a breakdown of each part before I really try to get back into it.

Also I got my first rejection letter from a literary agent this week, that was pretty exciting.  I more or less knew they were a little too big time for me, but I wasn’t completely sure and figured I’d give it a try.  The thinness of the returned self addressed stamped envelope was pretty much the giveaway that there wasn’t anything too splendid inside.  Upon opening it I found a standard issue form letter rejection.  Although it would have obviously been awesome to read something else, I wasn’t too downtrodden about the rejection letter, as far as I’m concerned it’s still pretty cool actually.  It most likely won’t be the last one, but it means that I’m putting my stuff out there and at least trying to get something published, and just the possibility of that is enough for now.

Here at home when I’m not writing or pandering to a pair of puggles I’ve been out in the yard working on my new yard project this year.   Our backyard is really in pretty good shape and quite spacious for a suburban dwelling but there has been one huge eyesore lurking around back there that I’ve been contemplating getting rid of for quite some time.  It is at the very back of the yard on our patio, I believe it was at one time a brick fireplace and/or grill.  What’s left of it was in crumbling ruins when we bought the house, basically only the base of it which rose about three feet high and was about four feet square.  As if that wasn’t bad enough there was a huge pane of glass placed on top of the thing about six feet square and three quarters of an inch thick.  The glass had actually been some kind of window, and a window of some renown at one time because it was etched with the words “Kent State School of Nursing” in a circle around the college’s seal.  We knew that the woman who owned the house before us was a nurse, so we assumed she must have gone to Kent State, and that when they changed the name from “school of nursing” to “college of nursing” she had some kind of connections that hooked her up with the old window.

My new project

 

With the big glass laid across the brick fire pit we guessed they used it as a table to sit around out at the patio, except the huge plate glass top was so huge it took up most of the patio.  That, combined with the fact that all of it was very ugly started me off on my plans to see to its undoing.  Last year we had someone come out who could smash the glass portion of it and haul it away.  After having to spend a few afternoons picking up stray shards of glass out of the grass I sort of regret not doing it myself, I had a very specific plan in mind to prevent the glass from getting all over the place, but then again I also would have been stuck with a tarp full of broken glass, so I suppose it was worth it just to have it hauled away.

This year however my sights have been set on getting rid of the brick hell hole that remained.  The brick base was of course filled with the remains of the original fireplace which meant I was about to come into possession of a great many bricks.  Several thoughts sprang to mind, maybe I’ll make a brick walkway, I could outline the entire yard in bricks, line all the flower beds, the front beds, the whole front yard even, everything lined with bricks.  It would be great.  The only problem was that most of the materials I found piled within the walls of the base were broken chunks or bricks encased in mortar.  So there went my grand plans.  There were however enough viable bricks to follow through with a few of my plans.  As you can see in the pictures below that I’ve taken with my phone.

Here’s an example of what I’ve done to put some of the bricks to use

 

A small covered area to store firewood for our fire bowl, made from a slab found in the brick pile

 

And finally in yard work not my own I spent this past Monday assisting my cousin Eric who was removing the back steps at my grandparents house and replacing them with a ramp to make it easier for them to make it to family functions when and if they feel up to it.  He had a pretty solid plan in mind and he did his research into what he wanted to do, I simply held a few boards and tightened some bolts.  It was cold as hell and pissing rain the entire day but we had a good time and I dragged one of the puggles along to run around the nice fenced in backyard, she however spent most of the day inside sitting with the grandparents after getting a bit too wet for her liking.  I didn’t get to help finish that project but the ramp is now all done and looks awesome.

The finished ramp at my grandparents house

 

Anyway it’s been a busy couple of weeks and I’ve had a great deal going on and a shit ton to think about so maybe when things slow down I can get back to pining over Babylon 5 or reciting my favorite planets from Star Wars.

That is all!