July 7th, 2005


Howard Hughes vs. Tropical Storm Cindy

We're home again, after the short overnight visit to my mother's big yellow house in Leeds (about 15 min. from Birmingham). We had to come back so soon in order to get Sophie off to the vet this a.m. to have her glucose levels measured. The visit to Leeds was mostly pleasant. We watched lightning striking in the valley. We played with the schnoodle and ate too much. Unfortunately, I got into a pointless theological/philosophical argument sort of thing with my mother yesterday afternoon, the sort we both try to avoid having with one another. Her being a moderately liberal Xtian with a strong distrust of science and me being one part Materialist and one part mystic, stranded, these days, somewhere perplexing between science and Wicca — no good could have come from this conversation, and no good did. Finally, about 6:30 (EST), Spooky and I headed back to Atlanta in the storm. We very nearly frelling drowned, but made it home about 10 p.m. (thanks to my webbed feet).

I am so not awake, even by my usual standards. Er...let's see. Spooky and I worked while we were gone, because the page proofs for "Houses Under the Sea" and "The Daughter of the Four of Pentacles" came in from Robert Morrish on Monday, just before we left for Alabama. I printed them out and took them with us, grumbling that I was already behind on the proofreading of the ARC for To Charles Fort, With Love. These two long stories (10-11k each) will soon be appearing in the anthology Thrillers II (Cemetery Dance Publications), as mentioned in the preface of TCF,WL, though I wish (as also mentioned in the same preface) that they could have actually been included in the collection. And, over the weekend, my editor read the first half of Daughter of Hounds and loved it (her words), which was a huge relief. When we got home, there was a package in the mailbox from Jada and Katharine in Arkansas (old, old friends), a Devonian-aged ammonite and nautiloid they bought us at a rock and fossil shop on a recent trip to Lake Tahoe. Neat. And today will spent trying to start a new short story (my first since "Bradbury Weather" last August, unless I count the vignettes) and trying to catch up with the proofing of TCF,WL.

Since I'm really not awake, I'm going to close this with something that I snurched from sclerotic_rings's LJ:

Every once in a great while, I'm asked if I'm getting a bit overly steamed over the ongoing dumbing down of American education, particularly as far as creationism and "intelligent design" are concerned. At times like these, I smile, pat that person on the head, and recite statistics that usually grab them: statistics that involve their wallets. In particular, how Toyota is moving manufacturing plants to Canada because the employees in their Mississippi and Alabama plants were often so illiterate that they needed "pictorials" for training, but that neither state plans to do anything about increasing education standards to prevent that sort of job hemmorhage. I deal with the end-products of that level of shortsightedness on a daily basis, and it isn't getting any better: which is worse, an exodus of jobs outside of the US because US workers are so stupid that they trip on the carpet pattern every morning, or a growth industry of customer support designed to take advantage of the fact that those same marching morons are entrusted with credit cards?

More later...
  • Current Music
    The Decemberists, "From My Own True Love (Lost at Sea)"


I didn't learn of the today's bombings in London until about 10:30 a.m. (EST), shortly after making my morning LJ entry. I watched about an hour's worth of CNN — the press conference and some of the recorded footage from the bombing sites — until it was only the talking heads repeating things that other people had said and speculating, and I turned off the television. The "new normal"? Maybe so. I really have no words today for this. I can only hope the death toll and number of injured grows no larger.
  • Current Music
    the hum of the refrigerator