December 30, 2006

Turn in your Guy Card

Posted in Uncategorized at 10:10 pm by Ian

“Wait a minute, what the hell is this piece for? It deoesn’t fit onto any of these openings.”

“Maybe it goes over there.”

“No. Look.”

“Hmm. What’s the manual say?”

<beat>

“The manual? I wouldn’t know.”

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December 29, 2006

Gosh! In Just Five Years?!

Posted in Uncategorized at 10:42 am by Ian

I like how the AP article about the Euro is emphasizing how long the particular currency has been in print, as though the European Union were an unexpectedly successful upstart nation, instead of being a confederation of most of the major economic powers of the past two thousand years. I guess “Europe regains economic supremacy after minor multi-world-war setback” just doesn’t have the same ring to it.

December 28, 2006

A Brief Novel Update

Posted in Uncategorized at 2:49 pm by Ian

I haven’t forgotten about it. Honest.

I spent about two hours last night cleaning some stuff up, and I think I’m about halfway there. For some truly bizarre reason, about twenty pages lost almost all their formatting and decided to become underlined. I expect to get some more done tonight, and might even have copies to send out by this weekend.

A Wholly Unexpected Occurrence

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:10 am by Ian

I don’t have anyone to blame for the constant power outages that upset my work yesterday and our electronics last night, preventing us from watching a movie and computing things in peace. After all, when the electrical engineers were designing the power grid for this city, who would have thought that they’d have to account for the movement of air?

December 16, 2006

Lamest Person Of The Year Ever

Posted in Uncategorized at 11:15 pm by Ian

You.

Also, your mom.

December 13, 2006

It’s Finally Starting to Kick In

Posted in Uncategorized at 12:07 pm by Ian

A choice quote from an article about Lindsay Lohan’s Alcoholics Anonymous progress.

[Lohan] revealed she’s been going to AA for a year — and just celebrated her first week of sobriety.

The Third Stage of Choreography: Bargaining

Posted in Uncategorized at 10:23 am by Ian

“…And then the girls kick, and the guys fall down.”
“I don’t like it. It’s cheesy, and lots of groups do that kind of thing.”
“Well, everyone else does, and I didn’t want to do that lift, but I went along with it.”
“Ok. I’ll do the kick and fall thing as long as we get to do the backpack at the end.”
“Deal.”

December 11, 2006

Washington Mutual’s New Security Setup

Posted in Uncategorized at 4:52 pm by Ian

I just tried to log on to my bank account, and was confronted with a prompt to provide the answers to some inane questions. I’ve done this before. I have several online banks, and they all require some sort of silliness like this. But, on closer inspection, I was kind of stumped.

Here’s the list of questions. Click for a larger view.

wamu_idiocy_detail

There’s only one question on that list that is applicable to me, and to which I actually know the answer. My favorite person from history. Sure, I could come up with someone, but the chances that I’d remember who I picked in a year and a half when I actually lose my password are slim.

So I picked “Hitler.” At least I can look forward to a very uncomfortable telephone conversation with the bank when I forget my password.

December 6, 2006

Free money for having a phone

Posted in Uncategorized at 3:18 pm by Ian

There’s a Federal Tax Credit for Long Distance Excise taxes this year. Basically, if you’ve owned any kind of phone in the past few years, you get a credit of $30-60. Don’t miss out.

Of course, the IRS is only refunding taxes paid in the last three years. Not before.

Under the applicable statute of limitations in the Internal Revenue Code, the IRS is generally not permitted to refund taxes that were paid more than three years before the date on which the refund program was announced.

First one to guess how long the statute of limitations is when the mispayment is in the other direction wins an inequitable government.

December 1, 2006

The Guts, The Glory

Posted in Uncategorized at 12:00 pm by Ian

It’s over.

I wrote the last 6,000 words on Tuesday. That’s the most I wrote in any single day during the entire month, by about 2,000 words, and I did it all in about three and a half hours. And, even by the next day, it felt so far away. I find myself in danger of having this conversation:

“Hey, remember when I was writing that novel?”
“Wait, you finished?”
“Oh. Yeah. Uhm. Seven hours ago.”

Thanks to everyone who encouraged me, and who congratulated me on my success.

Several people asked if they could read the book when it’s done, and I always planned to make it available to whoever was interested, unless it was so terrible that I couldn’t bear to do so. Well, it’s terrible.

But not that terrible.

I will not be posting it online, and I request that you not do so either. It’s one thing to have one’s family and friends share in my literary shortcomings, but another entirely for them to be permanently enshrined by Google. Those who are interested, leave a message in the comments, and I’ll email you a copy. Bear in mind that it’s an incredibly rough draft, rough to the point where, when I realized at the end of a paragraph, or even a sentence, that what I had just written was not self-consistent, I didn’t bother to go back and change it. I did (I think) manage to keep all of my characters named the same thing throughout, but I no longer know if my physical descriptions were consistent. And I have the unpleasant feeling that I may have misplaced a government agent somewhere along the way.

I don’t want any feedback. Really. There may come a time after I’ve cleared my mind and body of the toxins accumulated from writing that I’ll want to rewrite this, bring it up to a level worthy of praise and critique, but that time is not now. If you have even the slightest hint of literary acumen, you’ll recognize it for the dreck that it is, and if not, if you actually like it, I think I’d rather not know that about you. But, since I’m sure you can’t quite leave it at that, I’ll allow you one thought. One sentence, preferably. Just pick out the single aspect of the novel that is most enduring and impressive to you, and distill its impact down to one note. For example:

  • I cannot believe that you had your protagonist pass out in the moment that would otherwise have been his moment of triumph.
  • That was the most half-assed stillborn pseudo-romantic subplot I’ve ever read; you clearly have never even talked to a girl without pissing yourself.
  • Punchards?! You’re such a dork.

Except you can’t use any of those.