Saturday, November 27, 2010

Settling in Minn.

I'm on SL hiatus for the TG holidays. Won't return until probably next Mon or Tues. (maybe Sunday night, we'll see how the itinery works out.

If you have been following my misadventures, you already know that I'm not where I was a year ago, or even 3 months ago, in a very big way. Now, it seems I'm not where I was a month ago, either. If things keep going at this pace, every day will be radically different from the previous.
Currently, I am living in St. Paul, Minnesota, which is sorta "home turf" for me. I grew up in the middle of Minnesota, went to college in MN, and hovered around the border of Wisconsin/Minnesota for several years before we moved to Oklahoma. I have moved back to establish myself here and make a home for my wife and kids here. When our OK home is sold, they will move up here, and I should hope there's a place for them to live. My wife and I are still planning on divorce, due to my coming out of the closet, but there so far hasn't been a major push from either of us to make this a reality yet. We have a pretty good business arrangement set up, sorta. That makes it sound kind of cold and emotionless, but it's not. I still care for her well-being and I still love her and she to me as well. This gets into some deep things that I haven't even yet fully explored.
In SL, I have news to report that Opacus and I broke up. This was also due to some practicalities seeped with emotion. This past summer he had an opportunity in RL to advance his studies, which would take him away from SL for a couple months, and he let me know and we were both good with it. While he was gone, I was faithful, but I was also wooed. My thought when he returned was that things would go back to the way they were, but I was in the midst of my changing world, and he in his, and neither of us could fulfill our responsibilties and commitments to each other. I'm the one that suggested we go our separate ways, and he conceded. It was sad for both of us, but I'm hoping that it will also be beneficial to both of us. It's hard to say. From what I understand, Rico is still having a hard time getting in touch with me inworld, even though it's been about a year since our breakup. I've never claimed to understand the "ways of the heart" and it seems that I know even less about it now.
So I've been seeing this new person in SL. But we haven't committed ourselves to each other. He's the one for me though. Maybe committing to a relationship in a way jinxes it. I don't know. That's my feeling right now. Our SL relationship has spilled over into RL, and in a style and pace that is different than in SL. I'm willing to push forward with it in RL. I want to wait in SL, though.
Thing is, he's in Oregon, and I'm in Minnesota, and we're both unemployed, so neither of us can really afford the trip we both want to meet in person. We keep in touch though, through texts, and phone calls, and facebook messages. And keeping the faith, we'll meet, I'm sure. We're cultivating, yeah, that's what we're doing, cultivating.
Sigh. More to come.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Not what you may have expected.

Didn't go inworld again. Am having some problems connecting to SL lately. Not internet-connecting, but like soul-connecting. When I started, long time ago, I was in discovery mode. I was a hobo noob, and everything was so fresh and shiny. Then I stopped for a few months, and then gave it another shot (I blogged about that before May 22nd's entry), and it was like a rejuvenation. Of course, that rejuvenation was connected to my RL's changes, and SL was right for me at the time. It was needed. Things change like they always do, and there was a previous time when I didn't feel a need for SL, but I kept at it, and eventually it became a part of my scheduled habits. That's fine. I wasn't obsessed with it anymore, but it was just something I did. Some people watch TV, some people read books (I understand there are still people who read books), I played SL. No big deal.
Lately though, I've been kinda bored with it. I'm having a hard time finding paths of discovery there, and that was the splice of SL for me. It became a glorified chat room, where the same people came on and did the same things and talked about the same stuff and it was always the same.
I do have an issue that I am avoiding. And maybe that's why I'm hesitant to log in. It has to do with Opacus, my partner, and I don't know if I should delve into this issue here before I talk with him. I have to admit that I have been avoiding him, and checking to see if he's online before I log in. I don't want to say anything here, because what if he reads this and finds out this way rather than me talking with him direct. Also, I don't think that the topic is suitable for a blog like this. Rather personal, you know.
Yes. definitely. There's an elephant in the room and this is it. Must talk with him and clear this up. I hate confrontations, but this I must do.

Crap.. sucky blog entry. Sorry folks. Move along... here's a anatomical picture of the torso muscles. Blarg.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Two Months > Five Years

Tonight I'm not on SL. Personal choice. Most of my days end up with me sitting in front of the comp, moving Mr. Eel around, doing whatever he's into at the moment. (Current activity is the MHOH #4, not that he needs more stuff, but its about the ride) Last blog was what? Aug 19. My god I don't get on here very much. Considering that the last two months I have had more activity than in the previous five years.
So quick update: Aug 2, I quit working at the zoo. Spent the next four weeks getting the house ready to put on the market. Sept 2, moved to Twin Cities (Minnesota, home state) and am staying at my brother's house until I can establish myself. When the house sells, my wife and kids will also move up here. So, been spending the past month adjusting to new life. It's been strange, sometimes harrowing, emotion-wise, but I don't regret one single solitary bit. The only part I don't like is the intrinsic part of not seeing my kids on a daily basis. I miss them. I call every day. They miss me too. Hope the house sells soon.
Part of the readjustment is the hard reality of finding a job. Today's job market is tough. It's tough all over. Been sending out resumes left and right. Finally, this week I have three interviews lined up. I went to one today. It's a housing remodeller job. Taking crappy houses and flipping them. I can do that. Felt good about the interview. I could very well be starting next Monday. Fingers crossed. Two more interviews to go.
Since I'm not having any parental responsibilities right now, I'm taking advantage of this and have gone to regular notebook journalling and drawing. I've been very productive in both these. Most of my journalling has been seeped with self examination and figuring out what wrong with me. And that was fine, because I needed to do that, but now, I feel pretty confident about myself, and most of my problems are external, not internal. So I'm trying to move my journalling into writing about things that interest me. I was having a hard time making this transitions, because I kept writing about myself. So I set myself a little challenge. I bought a brand new notebook, and on the first page I wrote "The word 'I' is not to appear in this book," meaning that I have to force myself to get myself out of the personal reflective and into something more universal. Guess what? It worked. I filled five pages of substantial thoughts without referring to myself at all. No more "I believe this and this" "I think such and such". It's more solid and palatable. In a journal, of course it's what I think or believe, no need to write that. I also feel I wrote more content in fewer words. So there you go.
Maybe I should take this rule to this blog? Heh, ok, maybe. The idea came to me when I was writing all these cover letters for the resumes. I had some friends look at them, and one comment was "Use fewer "I" statements." Really, it's a cover letter, not a treatise on what I believe. So anyway. Less on that.
Well, it's late and I have to get some good sleep for tomorrow's interview. It's for a party place, they host weddings and so forth and need properties designed and built, I've done that before, I can do that again. I like doing that. So i'm going to bed. Good night!

PS Cartoon above stolen from another website, Will remove or credit if requested.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Living On The Other Side Of My Life

I was going to log on tonight, but SL was taking forever to load, and in the meantime I do what I normally do, stream Pandora and cruise the net. (was Scissor Sisters Hair Baby, now Tool's Rosetta Stone, I'll update it throughout this blog as I write, maybe.)

Upchurning of events in my RL. For those who knew, my RL job was that I worked as a carpenter in a zoo. Yes, yes, very interesting. News is though that as of August 3 I no longer am employed there. I decided to quit to work on the house so we can sell it and finally move on with life. so for the past couple weeks, I've been covered in paint, silicone, chlorine bleach, spackle and all sorts of cleaning and fixing-up concoctions to completely overturn this house to something of some value. It's coming along, and with any luck, we'll be able to put it on the market by next week. Once it's on the market, I will move ahead and my wife and the kids will stay behind until it sells. Hopefully it won't be long.

Believe by The Bravery

I really shouldn't be logging into SL and I shouldn't be playing around on facebook and Treasure Madness and other games. I shouldn't be following the debate of the Ground Zero mosque and the Defeat of Proposition 8 in California. I should be taping out the wall in the front room so I can paint the trim. I should be packing up all the doodads on the bookshelves and mantlepiece. I should do an extra load of laundry, I should be working. But I'm not. I'm fucking around on the internet.

Me, I'm Not by Nine Inch Nails.

I should be looking for a job when I move to St.Paul. I don't have one right now. In fact, me quitting work will be cutting our income in half. we have a little in savings, I'll be getting my vacation time comp check soon, and I'm cashing out my retirement for this move. We've decided that this woud be the course of action way long time ago. I'm scared shitless. In fact I haven't had a decentt BM for three days. (no, I'm kidding. My colon is fine really, thanks for the interest) I am nervous though. Change is always stressful and this is a big one. Life is coming at me full speed nowadays, and I hide from it with the internet.

Rise by Flobots

I've been looking forward to come on to SL lately, but I seem to be disappointed each night. I am unfocused and I ususally sit at my home skybox for a good long time, trying to figure out what to do. For most of the summer, Opacus has been offline, as he had gotten a very good opportunity in RL over the summer. He returned a couple weeks ago, but I mostly seem to be passing him on the log ins. I'm worried about us. I think I've drifted. I've gotten to know some other friends, and sometimes intimately, but I had always been faithful to Opacus. and now I'm uncertain. I do hope he doesn't stumble across this, but in a way I will accept the consequences if he does see this.

Wolf Drawn by Emancipator

I also haven't seen Rusty/Morty much these last few months. I became friends wit him in RL as well, and we know each other and contact via facebook. but he seems to have fallen off the grid. I miss him. He was sometimes invective, often stubborn and a little frustrating, but he's a good person and an honest one. Everyone has faults, but he rises above his faults, accepts that he is imperfect and strives to be a better person always. He has ruffled feathers before, and for someone who can't stand their feathers ruffled, he will hit on a tender spot, and sometimes cause undue relations with the unspecified sensativo.

God Put a Rainbow in the Clouds by Ralph Stanley and the Clinch Mountain Boys.

Dang that was a long one to write and the song was kinda short, so....

How To Handle Grownups by Ruckus Roboticus

Here I sit. It's after midnight, and I don't think I've come to any conclusions with this blog entry. I should find some sort of picture to add to this blog, to "spice it up" cause as everyone knows, style accessorizes substance. At least it should, I think. It shouldn't be more important that substance, but it make the substance palatable. Food is nourishing, but without spice, food isn't life. I should know. I grew up on Norwegian food, in which black pepper was the spiciest thing that one would add to anything.

What If We Give It Away? by REM

I don't feel very fulfilled with this posting, just like I don't feel very fulfilled with SL lately. Even facebook has lost some of it's charm. (please keep caustic statements at bay. I'm well aware of the sardon.) I suppose one can't expect to be fulfilled by every nuanced thing they do. Of course not. Life is drudgery, life is factory work. But it doesn't have to be, does it? Life can be fun and exciting, can't it? Ok now I'm verving between blind optimism and knee-jerk pessimism. Life is life and that what it is. It's not a box of chocolates. This paragraph is going in way too many directions.

Ramona by The Ramones

I love my wife, but we are going to separate, and divorce. Those who follow my ramblings closely know that I came out of the closet after being married to her for nine years. Went through the ringer with that one. all sorts of emotions and subconcious demons came bubbling to the surface. Last night a few more popped up. We had gotten into a fight. without getting into details. what came out of it was I realized I had been dishonest before and had strived to be honest since, but in that I had neglected being responsible. She discovered that she had some deep-seated trust issues that were very tender. By the end of the night we were not fighting. And really, that's all I care to reveal about that right now.

Live Before You Die by Social Disorder.

I think this is the last paragraph. and it's interesting that Pandora picked this song, since I had kinda touched on that topic earlier. I have always felt that this was a good message. I was alway a true believer that we are each given one life (that we know of) and that we are to make of it what we wish. That's why I quit the zoo, that's why I came clean with my wife, that's why I make some of the desicions that I make. Perhaps I have been unstimulated by internet stuff lately because I have relied on them too much to be a surrogate life. Honestly, the town I live in po-dunk. It's boring as hell, and it's the boring hell, not the interesting fire and brimstone one. We try to make the best of it we can , to have fun and live here, but, damn it's dull. That's the main reason I think I've relied on the internet. It's a little more cosmopolitan than Armpit, Oklahoma. But then again, so was the soup I had for dinner. I might be coming on SL much less often in the near future. I have a lot to do, and I'll be living on the other side of my life then, and it might actually be more interesting than the internet.

Oh crap, I gotta stop. A-ha's Take On Me just popped up. That's my cue.

Till the next time, Blog Heroes, keep being real, whatever that means.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

So I'm on this journey, see?

I feel like I ought to be blogging more. There seems to be a lot of flury lately and one good way for me is to write it down. Keeps a good record of what's going on and where I am at at a particuler time. Right now I feel like a tornado is right above me, trying to pull all aspects of my life away and spread my belongings and the things I desire and treasure asunder. To try to make it to the cellar door before the very foundation is pulled away.

But is that bad?

It's certainly one of the ways of the Tao, isn't it? When I was a younger man (omg, did I just say that????!!!) I used to know quite a bit of the teachings of Lao Tzu and others. Does anyone remember Benjamin Hoff's Tao of Pooh? I used to have a mental rolodex of popular and tried koans to help me along my journey. Yes, I did believe in the journey. I still do, but now I understand that the journey was not the romantic Don Juan type in which everyone will discover their inner magic by learning from a Mexican shaman in the desert after eating all that peyote. The journey is truly unique to each person, and I believe since it's one's own journey, one should approach it on one's own terms. You can call it a miracle, you could call it a coincidence, you can call it animism, or magic (with or without the "k"), you could call it Allah's will or The Force. There is practically a whole Dr. Suess book of names you can call your God. and you could capitalize the "G" because it's a proper noun, or you could give it a little "g" because it's a common noun, or you could put it in full caps, GOD, so that everyone in the back can hear it. You could stamp it on a coin to help you remember, or have the US Treasury do that for you.

Now, not so many koans. What is the sound of one had clapping when your country is under siege? If a tree falls in the woods and no one is there to use it, is it still potential fuel? how many angels can dance on the hole in a pipeline? When the hell will Sarah Palin's star fade? (Ok, that's a personal digression, must focus on task at hand) I'm older now, and I've asked fewer questions about "why" and have focused many questions on "how" How do you change the oil? How do you get a 2x4 board level? and, I think the most useless of all: How am I doing?

When perhaps I should be asking Why am I doing? To what end will my efforts bear fruit? A happier me? a more fulfilled sense of self and self of place? that cool rad tattoo and someone to tell its story to? a hole 6 foot under? All these are pleasant to think about, about rich rewards and a comfortable retirement, but once you achieve the ultimate goal what do you do next?

Ad nauseum into the aether of self-reflection. The questions will never stop piling up, it seems, and perhaps that tornado feeling I previously expressed are Mother Nature's (for those of you in the back, I said MOTHER NATURE) way of using my subconsicious to tell me to get rid of that stuff, that these are not the things I need to continue on my journey. or maybe I secretly like to shoot myself in the foot, to gain disadvantage so I can have a crutch to blame. But I don't like that one, it puts too much of the responsibility and accountability on me, that it is my own shortcomings that cause my failure and downfall. After all, without my shortcomings, wouldn't I be perfect? Of course I would be. :)

Once I have become perfect, things will be just posh.

Until then, I trudge along, on my journey, meeting Mexican shamen and discovering the addiction of facebook, and not doing the windows, what to do with the damn dog that ripped the siding off the house, and deciding the fate of my work, and figuring out how I and my wife can be fair to the kids, and still be able to to smell a rose now and again.

I'm hoping that the journey has some redeeming qualities, and by redeeming, I mean... well, I' sure you know what I mean.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Four Feet On The Ground

I mentioned in my last blog that I have two things I wanted to talk about, one in RL and one in SL. I didn't get to the topic inworld, so I'm going to dedicate this entry to that subject.

I've tried many things in Second Life. As a noob, I spent many many days learning my way around, bumbling from one thing to another, not really knowing what I was doing. I didn't understand the usefulness of the Torley tutorials, the groups, blogs online that I've found, heck, I didn't even know how to make friends. The first sim that i became a regular at was October Country, a halloween based sim that played old horror radio programs from way back. I remember the first time I sat down on a log in front of a roaring fire and looked at the others that were there. Such a mishmash of characters, none like I had run into before. I sat between Batman and Pinhead and saw many zombies and ultragoths come in. (Later I found out that the Batman avatar was that freebie one that honestly isn't that great). I realized that second Life was a greater place than I realized in that people could express themselves as something other than regular people.

I was also at this time learning how to build things. I would find myself at various sandboxes, shaping and linking objects and playing with textures and the various coordinates. It was a blast! I eventually began building a character that was specific and unique, and I began defining who Leigh Eel was. I made him into a satyr. Granted a very modest one, one who wore a green jacket. Not a very carnal creature at all. but it was something I made all by myself, I didn't buy anything at all, in fact, I had a basic account and was determined not to put any money into this hobby. I had fun with it. I went to October Country and felt like I fit in better.

Real Life came rushing in, and I took a hiatus from Second Life for about 4 months, not logging in once. I still didnt' have any friends on a contact list, and I felt I had no obligations or specific desires to stay online. I had joined two groups while i was there, when I went to a party/social function, purely by accident. I joined Love Harbor, the group for the sim where the event took place, and I joined the DJ's fan club, his name was Arcadia, I believe. During my hiatus, I noticed that my email was piling up with notices from these two groups. I didn't use that email address for anything else, so I pretty much ignored it. After about 4 months, I decided I really had to do something with this pileup of notices. so I logged in, and dropped the two groups. I felt horrible about it, as if I let these people down.and I let the sim owner know how sorry I was. It's funny in retrospect, I think how innocent I was. Since I was online, I explored some, and discovered that October Country had expanded to cover an entire sim. it was very cool, and I had a great time. I went back online a few times and thought not too much about it.

If you know about my real life, this was right before I came out of the closet. I began thinking about SL a lot, and about how I could really express what I was dying to do in RL. I tenaciously scouted out some gay sims, embarrassment causing me to not interact too much. Any time anyone approached me, just to say hello, I tpped right out of there. My courage gradually grew, as I felt I did have the screen of anonymity on being online, but I still didn't want to commit myself or admit to myself anything. To alleviate my issue, I explored fantasy-based sims, since I was a satyr. I found a region called Metatheria, and there I was welcomed and invited to join their group. Pleased, over the next few days I explored the area, and went into the adjacent sim to the south, Chiaroscuro. I met more of the locals, including a very straightforward satyr named Arva. I cannot say how much I am indebtted to him, as my coming out to myself was bubbling to a full boil, and he was kind enough to listen and offer his time and opinions and let me know that it really was ok to be who I really was. I had grown fond of him.

One day, as I was driving home from work, I thought about what I was doing on Second Life, that it wasn't just a hobby anymore, it was more of a sketchbook of how I wanted to be in real life, with the bonus of trying new shapes out that I had only before dreamed about. I was very fascinated by centaurs, and I decided that I wanted a centaur look. I tried at one point to build one, but there were secrets of scripting that I just couldn't figure out. I decided to actually look for one from a vendor and see what I felt at the time. I found one that I really liked. The vendor was a shop called Hoof-It, who specialized in horses for riding, and horse avatars, and they had a avatar that was a centaur, and it was very well made. It was also 1200 Lindens. Since I was a cheapskate, I hemmed and hawed over this price, but I decided that since I had already invested so much time into the game, I could afford a little spending. I made my first Linden purchase and eager opened it up and wore it. It was so natural feeling, if that makes sense. I wore it all the time that I was in a fantasy based sim. I was home.

Since that time, I had gone through many phases. I went club hopping, I explored art scenes, I found cool music venues, I discovered the thrill of treasure hunting. I eventually came to comfort of being gay and was pretty happy with the time I was spending online. I made friends. Arva was my first. I remember when I said to him that I didn't have any contacts and he was so surprised that he introduced me to many folk in chiaroscuro, all of whom were more than welcoming to me. Archie, Thorn, GerardWay, Rammy, Grev, and many other good people whom I was happy to meet and know. There were also some dark times, in which I felt that the world was against me and that I couldn't trust anyone. I lost many friends this way, even though many of them remain on my contact list. at times I try to reconnect, but it doesn't always stick.

These phases didn't always conduce to being a centaur or a satyr, so I had my standard human form for these. There were many times when being human was more common than being a fantasy character for me, and I didn't fight it, because there was no need to.

This sorta brings me to what I wanted to say in the first place. Recently I changed my profile pic for Blogger. It was a pic of me leaning against a lamppost. It's now a pic of me as a centaur. I've been trying to foster more impetus for this character, more grounding. I've been reaching out to other centaur friends on SL slowly slowly. It does give me a feeling of confidence, to play this character. My centarur friend Annabelle said something to me once, which i will not forget. "Your have four feet on the ground. You are stable" Though it's not a very catchy mantra, it does hold some strength for me.

The downside of centaurs on SL is that it is difficult to find poseballs that work well, and dancing animations look very goofy. When invited to dance, I used the same tired joke: "I can't dance, I have two left feet." I really should find a better joke.

Well, that was what I wanted to say. It's not fantabulously interesting, but it's a slice of SLife, and was on my mind, so I said it. Good night.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Love and Marriage

I have two things I want to blog about, and I wasn't sure if I should make them into two different entries or mash them into one. They aren't related at all, one is about SL goings-on and the other is about RL goings-on. Both are time sensitive, but I think my RL experience is more time sensitive, as it is about yesterday, May 3. The SL experience is more about what I'm going through lately in SL. I'll start on the RL one, I guess, since I set it up that way that I just did, and obviously, one absolutely cannot turn back and edit when one is in a stream of conscious-frame of writing.


May 3.

What happened on May 3rd?



It's a pretty significant date for me.

And for my wife.

At least it was.

On Sunday. we made a little campfire in the backyard, and had a talk. It has been a little over two years since I came out of the closet to her, and it has been a strange, bumpy, uncomfortable and painful rollercoaster ride. And now it seems the ride is coming to its rampdown. We agreed that we should consider ourseves as single people. We will get the papers filed and all the legal stuff done at some point, but as for our hearts, we are not married. That's kinda the way we started out the marriage too. We considered ourselves married and in our hearts we were. We had a child and later we decided that we would make it legal.

These past couple of years especially, nationwide, it has been a hot topic about gays getting married politically. This topic has affected many friends of mine in several ways. It really has made me think about the institution of marriage, and really what it means to be married. i feel that if a couple, gay or straight, feel it within themselves and with their own God in whatever form, that the marriage as a legal construct is mostly a political one. Who is permitted visitation and who is covered by health insurance, who has a right to the assets to a deceased partner's belongings and granting final wishes... these are in essence, legal and political matters and are not sacred by my definition. Marriage, as a holy union is something within the hearts of the couple involved. Everything else is ceremony and dogma.

The same holds true for divorce. At least I believe it should. A spiritual divorce is a releasing of that sacred bond, and in our case the we have come to that point. We have agreed upon it, a thus it is so. There are too many couples that are stuck in unhappy or worse, dangerous lives because they do not feel the sacred bonds that they are legally obligated to uphold.

I could go on and on about my opinion of marriage and the nuances of it socially and legally, but I do not feel I have the time right now at this sitting.

I made my little statement, and that was my only intent of this blog.
I love Theresa deeply. I care for her best interest and her well being. I treasure my time with her and I feel the respect from her for me. These are the goals of marriage, and we have attained that. With two happy, healthy children as a bonus.

And I release her.

Friday, April 23, 2010


Arghh! I accidently am following my own blog. I don't know how to stop following it, so I'm just gonna put this little note saying I am not egoistic, I am in fact quite incompetant. :P I went to the How to section and followed the directions, but that didn't work, so until I do figure it out, I'll just have to go on seeing what I have to say.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Goldman and Wolf

Happy beautiful day in April! The weather is just absolutely perfect here in the Bullseye of America. School is almost over for the kiddoes, and my son will be finishing up both elementary school and Cub Scouts this May. I've reached a good place with my work. I'm pretty comfortable with myself, even if I bemoan every once in a while. I've one little stitch right now.

Last Tuesday, like a sleeping Nordic god, Eyjafjallajokull erupted with a plume of ash and smoke that reached heights of 6 km, and stopped all air traffic to and from Northern Europe.

"So what?" I hear you say, and I noticed that you said it pretty non- caringly, I might add. "You live in Oklahoma, and the weather is 'absolutely perfect', dipshit."

Ok, so maybe you didn't call me dipshit, but at this point it still plays with my roundabout way of getting to a point.

This was also a week that my wife took a personal vacation to Paris.
"Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh," I hear you realize, "ahhhhhhhhhhhhh. (dipshit)."

She was supposed to return Sunday day, but that was a no-go. CDG airport had cancelled all flights. So I spent the majority of my day on the phone with Expedia and Delta trying to figure out how to get her back so she could get to work on Tuesday. The best they could do was rebook her flight for this next Thursday (In two days at this writing.) at no extra cost. Once that was taken care of, I told her, "hey, go have fun. might as well." She got to stay in the hotel for the extra days. I called her work and told them what was going on. the only real expenses would be the extra hotel days and her daily expenses.

If you're gonna be stranded somewhere, it might as well be Paris.

So. In a way I got extra SL time. On the login page, if you have BG Images enabled, there will be a scene of a featured sim. Lately, being in the adventurous mood, I've been going to the first one that pops up, and I've landedin some pretty neat places. This particular night featured Ryu Valley, so I took it. I landed in a place where furries abound, in the Luskwood neighborhood. I'm not a furry, I'm a mythic, but it's not to far off, besides, when on an adventure, one must explore. So I did. I started out in the market place, of course. and as I waited for things to rez, I went to examine some of theitems for sale in Furryland as they finally came clear. One thing I noticed was a wolf avatar. It was well made, and there was a free Demo, so I took it and tried it on. I like they way it moved and I ran around the sim with it. even with the Blue word "demo" splashed on the side.

I ran around some more, and suddenly I spied something that made me stop and take notice. There was a volcano on the sim. I thought of my RL, and of the volcano in Iceland. I decided that if there were the old thematic gods of Greece, Rome, or Scandinavia, they would still exist and would probably want to be acknowledged, and so I made a little homage to Vulcan. Nothing grand, I must say. I bought the wolf avatar (which is even better than the demo, though a tad expensive, but an homage is an homage, is it not?) and I was a wolf for the rest of the evening. I growled and yipped and barked instead of talking. My friend MoRusty contacted me and I barked. He was a little confused, so I whined, and he decided to play along. I tpped him to the volcano and sat there staring at it and whining. I wanted him to understand my message, which was a pretty simple one: "My wife was stuck in Paris because of the volcano." MoRusty knew she was there, in a previous discussion, and the volcano was in the news, so I thought this would be pretty easy. I guessed wrong. he couldn't figure it out, as hard as he tried. So I tpped to an airport, (sorry can't remember which one right now) and tpped him there as well. I trotted about the hangar excitedly. Still he didn't quite get it. Then I tpped us to a sim called Paris 1900, which is actually a string of four sims, each with a Parisian name, and barked around underneath the Eiffel Tower (PS, I totally recommend these sims, they are very well made) until he gave up. I turned human again and explained what I had meant, and told himpoint blank what the message was. It seemed goldman's RPping was a little Rusty (This is a pun, btw.) and we spent the rest of the night talking about this n that.

It was a pretty good night. I hope Theresa is doing ok.

Thursday, March 11, 2010


Haven't been blogging much lately. Last one was in late January. None in February. Now we're well into March. Well, a while ago this would have bothered me, but it doesn't anymore. I've been busy, no bones about it. If you read my last blog (and can remember it), you'd know that I have been going through some changes in my little world. Have these changes settled now, and that's why I'm writing? Not really. It seems the only constant is change as someone well-known once said (sorry folks, not checking references on this blog. You want to know who said it, google it yourself)

It's not fun change for me. It's very difficult. It's like a snake shedding his skin. Very painful and irriating. Supposedly it will feel better once I'm done shedding, but I have not that kind of foresight.

I'm trying to hold onto my core, of what makes me me, of identifying what makes me happy or confident or positive, but that is difficult to do as well, sice those factors seem to be shifting as well. I used to love art, for example. I could name and date hundreds of different paintings, by title and by artist, by year and movement, by influences and successors, purpose, reason, necessity, contribution. I would sit and stare at one painting for hours at a time, transfixed and in bliss, over and over and over again.

Now, I imagine it, and think "meh". Its importance is lost on me. I cannot feel passion for the things I used to. But I really wish I did. It's almost paradoxical in that I really really really really really want to feel passion.

It's tied to joy, I know it. and joy is something else I feel I'm missing. No joy, no zest.

Ok, sounds like another downer post, right? Well, the weird part is that I don't really feel down. I'm not upset or depressed, which is good, I think. It feels that this is the right direction, like it's destined or something. and maybe it is. Despite this lack of passion, I'm actually pretty chipper most of the time. The trivial day-today stuff really doesn't get me down. I can have a crappy day at work or at homje, but after a few days, something goes right, and the crappiness passes. It's the long-haul stuff that usually gets at me. Some people have called it "mid-life crisis", and honestly, it does kinda look like that. Well, mid-life crisis sucks, but so does just about every stage of life as we're going through it.

I'm not an advocate of pre-destiny, nor am I an opponant to it. It might happen, pre-destiny, that is. How the hell am I supposed to know? What I do know about destiny is this: Things happen all the time. And those things that happen are effects of causes. What I do now will affect my future. What I did yesterday affects my today. And unless everything were to stop and never to start again, something will happen next. It's guaranteed. And that thing that will happen next was caused by something. It had to have been. Nothing just doesn't happen, without a context. And so it was destined to happen from previous actions, thus was pre-destined. Just because I don't know what is to happen doesn't mean it won't.

Ok, that's your prattle for the month. Enjoy it :)

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Changes in work, changes in life.

What a week. I think this was maybe the hardest week I've gone through, at work and at home.

I work at a zoo, for those who don't know. I build exhibits, shipping crates, shift doors, tree stands, display cases, sign frames, and whatever else needs building. It's a pretty good job. I get to work with animal trainers and I get to know the animals on almost a personal level. I get to help develop educational exhibits on various biological topics, (loved doing the bioluminescence exhibit). Most everyone there are good to work with. I get some good benefits, health, dental, vision, good vacation time, after I passed my five years investiture, I get some nice money paid into my retirement fund. And I works side-by-side with a good staff. We have a graphics designer, a graphics printer, a sculptor/welder, and electronics guy (who is my best friend there) and me, the carpenter.

Those are the good things. The down sides include working with city government (Ssssslllllooooowwww------), and my supervisor. She's incompetent and a micromanager and feels she needs to get involved in every single detail of the zoo, even when they don't involve exhibits. She doesn't understand her place. And she makes it difficult for me and my co-staff to do our jobs, because she'd switch priorities at random times for what appears to be no reason, and would have to know the details of every single thing we do, even if the answers aren't possible to know. There are many other ways that she makes things difficult, which I can't go into at this time, because of time and computer memory constraints.

The economy of the whole country is a mess right now, and so is the economy of the city. In December, halfway through the fiscal year, the city was $10 million dollars in the hole. We just got a new mayor in November, the previous one spent money like it meant nothing, building a new city Hall, a new baseball stadium and a new events center. Then she made the choice to not run again. Bitch. So the new mayor looked at the budget when he got in and said "Holy shit! we have no money" We all knew it, even before he was elected, under the other mayor, we as workers had to encumber 8 furlough days to help with the budget. In December ALL spending froze. If I needed lumber or screws, Tough shit. Make do with what you have. The only spending that were not frozen was for animal care (food, medicine, etc) and public safety. Nice, eh?

the non=profit group that goes hand-in-hand with the zoo were raising funds to ship two giraffe cows from different parts of the country. Our previous giraffe cow died last summer from old age. The new ones arrived in late November. Wonderful for the zoo, good press, and hopes that the slough of animals that had died the previous year was to come to an end. We had already lost our Grizzly, our Polar Bear, two Alligators, a Kudu bull, a cheetah, and a matriarchal chimp. Our sharks were moved to a nearby aquarium so the tank could be rebuilt (not cheap) and so were our sea lions transported to another zoo so their exhibit could also be rebuilt. It was like death zoo. The planning for the shark tank didn't consider the lining, which would cost $25,000, and so that has been delayed, and by now the sharks had grown so large, they won't even fit in their tanks. The sea lion exhibit also met delays, and we might not even break ground for it until 2012, 5 years after the entire thing was supposed to be finished.

Our zoo director left in November, 2008. Better job in Hawaii. Operations Manager was interim director until a new one was hired in April. She had to learn the ropes of this new place, and had to deal with all this shit, on top of us in the exhibits department not being efficient due to our supervisor. Over the summer our department participated in dialogue seminars to try to help us iron out the difficulties. Didn't help much. We eventually got the attention of the union representative to talk to someone high up in HR to scrutinize our supervisor.

In November we got our giraffes. One arrived from California in good condition, the other came from Ohio. When she arrived, her neck seemed crooked. Our vet staff and Large Mammal curator and keepers examined her, provided muscle relaxers and did everything they could to comfort her, but her condition worsened until it deemed necessary that her have a surgery. She had a fracture in one of her neck vertebrae. During the procedure, she was given anesthesia. With smaller animals, this isn't usually a problem, but with large ungulates, there is a risk that the legs can give out when knocked out. And there are other risks too. Giraffes are such large animals that the right dosage is often hard to calculate. Too much and you risk putting her life, not enough and it won't be effective. I am not entirely sure what happened during the procedure, as the vet staff kept as much of it quiet as possible, but she didn't survive the anesthesia. She died.
Before Christmas, our area was threatened with a cold front coming from the south. It wound up being one of the widest temperature drops in the history of the area. All keepers took preventative measures to keep the barns warm. The temperature in giraffe barn is hard to regulate, being that it is 24 feet tall and very wide, but extra hay bales were brought in to block gaps in doors and leaks, extra propane heaters brought in. They did all they could. The building is over 25 years old, and there wasn't any money to build a new one soon. The other giraffe died from hypothermia, right around Christmas.

A terrible thing to happen. for sure. We lost two giraffes in as many months, and the press reported this and the locals began angrily questioning the zoo, stating that the zoo should be shut down, the keepers and Director should be fired (or worse!). There ought to be investigations! Someone should lose their job for this! It was vicious. There were investigations, and for both incidents, it was found that the zoo did everything they could. These things happen. Animals die all the time. It was just bad timing that these two giraffes died so close together and soon after their arrival.

Now, January of this year hit the city like a baseball bat. The mayor had a tough decision. paycuts or layoffs, throughout the city. The following couple weeks, there were countless meetings, negotiations, speculations and brouhaha. What came of all of it was layoffs. The City in total laid off 147 firefighters, 155 police officers, and 59 non-sworn employees, 10 of those from the zoo. My best friend from the zoo was laid off. Also, in our department, guess who? The woman who has driven our department to a screeching halt, has tarnished our name to the whole parks department, who has wasted precious time and money in misguided efforts, My supervisor was given the boot. I am not the kind of person to revel in other's misfortunes. It is not good news to lose your job. But I think, if anyone deserved it, it was her.

It will be a strange week at work this next one. The four of us will have to forge the way we do things, and we will also have to mourn the layoffs of all our friends who lost their jobs.

At home, things have not been well either. those who have been following my blog will know that about two years ago I came out of the closet to my wife of (now) ten and a half years. We decided the best thing for both of us is to separate and eventually divorce so that we both can move on. Neither of us relished the idea, because we do both love each other, but it is the right thing to do.
Last week, our son woke up at four o'clock throwing up. He had eaten too much junk food the previous day, he wasn't sick with a bug or anything. I spelpt through it, as I was dead tired from the happenings at work. When I did wake, I saw him sitting on the couch, pretty sad-looking. My wife had taken care of him overnight, I tried my best to help him, but every suggestion that I made, she took issue with. i got fed up with it and called her on it. We got into a major argument. Eventually we both realized that the argument wasn't about the care for our son, but it was that our progression seemed to be not progressing. We both calmed down about it. I went to work, but this was weighing so heavily my mind I could concentrate on work. I went home and allowed my wife to sleep. After she woke, we discussed things, and we decided that the first thing we should do is not sleep in the same room anymore. Eventually, I shall move out, to my home state, and begin life as a single man again, and she shall stay until the house is sold. When it does, then she will decide if she wants to move to near where I am, or if she will have explore other opportunities. Either way, life will not be the same.

I'm tired of writing this down. There is a lot more behind this, but I can only type so much without becoming exhausted and a little overwhelmed. If any of you readers have questions, I'll do my best to answer them. If you don't, that's fine too.

Have a good day.