June 5th, 2008

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Two by two, hands of blue.

Up too early. But not as early as Spooky, and there's a story there. I'll get to it in a moment.

I have been seized by a terrible panic, that I have to get back to work now, or certain doom will descend upon me. And, really, it's only a slight exaggeration. I only have a few months to finish a novel I've hardly begun. I have to keep the digest going. I have other deadlines. Moving to Providence negated none of that, cardboard canyons or no cardboard canyons, exhaustion or no exhaustion. The movers still have not come with our furniture, by the way, and the novelty of the air mattress has worn thin. We were told we could expect the truck here by Friday, at the latest. So, hopefully, we'll hear something today.

You know what's really annoying? Well, then, I'll tell you. I keep this journal primarily to promote my writing. That means, oftentimes, I keep certain opinions to myself, knowing that if I speak my mind on those subjects, I'll alienate readers (or potential readers). And lately, I find myself wanting to opine on a great number of touchy subjects. But if I succeed in alienating readers, I have defeated the primary purpose of this journal. So, I ask you — how many here would stop reading if I just opened up and really spoke my mind? On anything and everything, from Hilary Clinton's refusal to step aside to the wholesale rape of the environment by humans to 133t-speaking idiots on Second Life? Of course, no such poll would ever be scientific. I'd need, literally, thousands of replies, and I'd likely only get a few dozen, maybe a hundred if I bothered to set up a poll. So. Just thinking aloud here. It's a curious sort of Catch-22. Some will say I'm not giving readers enough credit, but many, many times I've had people email to say they will no longer read my LJ or my books because I've said X, Y, or Z. And, yes, I do need readers who do not share the same views as I do. Otherwise, I would starve on the street.

As for yesterday, it was chilly and rained hard all day long. A wonderful, steady rain. It was Byron's last day in Rhode Island, and what did he want to do with it? Go to another location of Newbury Comics, this time at Providence Place mall. It's like an annex of Nerd Heaven (though, of course, the original location of Newbury Comics is on Newbury Street in Boston). My feet still hurt, so, mostly, I sat outside the shop and watched people. I used to do a lot of people watching. They can be more interesting than watching birds, every now and then. Some moron tried to shoplift from Newbury, him and his girlfriend, and they got caught. And I marveled at the droopy jeans. When the hell is this going to cease to be cool? Seriously, when the crotch of your jeans is down to your knees, it's time to see a therapist about those feelings of penile inadequacy you suffer from.

So, yeah. I watched surly teens. Surly white teens. Surly black teens. Surly Hispanic teens. I'm not sure where all the surly Asian, Middle Eastern, and Indian teens were. Maybe they only sulk about the mall on Fridays or something. Anyway, Byron found the special edition of the new Weezer album, which was problematic, as he'd bought the regular edition (five tracks shorter) in Warwick the day before. Solution? He bought the limited, and then gave me the regular. And, yes, it rocks.

Back home —— it was raining too hard to make the trip to Lovecraft's grave at Swan Point —— I finished reading David Rains Wallace's Neptune's Ark: From Ichthyosaurs to Orcas. A really wonderful book, and I recommend it highly to anyone with a general interest in the evolution of secondarily marine tetrapods along the western coast of North America. Maybe I'll try to write more on the book later, as I feel it deserves a more thoughtful comment than that. It got me through the long drive up from Atlanta, it and HPL —— "The Colour Out of Space" (one of his very best) and "The Lurking Fear" (not one of his very best).

Here we come to the part of the entry that explains why I'm not very awake, and why Spooky's worse off than I am. Byron's flight out of Providence was scheduled for 5:59 p.m., but bad weather to the south —— in Virginia, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere, delayed the flight an hour. We sat with him until almost seven, then swung by Whole Foods to get some dinner and other essentials. And then, later, while I was having a much needed bath, Byron called to say that, because of the weather, the flight had been canceled. So, Spooky had to drive back to the airport to retrieve him. While she was gone, I read the start of Joss Whedon's Fray and started breaking down some kitchen boxes. When the two of them returned, Byron and I sat and talked a long time about comics —— my feelings about having done The Dreaming and the mess that it became, DC/Vertigo editorial policies, comics in general, and, finally, The Red Tree. Because I can rarely resist a captive audience, I read him the first two sections of Chapter One. And then there was bed, about midnight, because Spooky had to get him back to the airport for an 8 ayem flight, which means they had to be there by at least 7:30 or so. Blegh.

Long day ahead of me. For one, I have to deal with at least some of the backed up email. But I shall leave you with a photo, me and Spooky out front of the house, taken late on Tuesday (we have the second floor). It's not the best photo in the world, because I was tying my shoe, and it was taken with a Blackberry, and there's some weird foreshortening going on, but...I like it. It is so rare that Spooky will let me post a photo of her. For that matter, it's rare these days I want to post a photo of me. Photo (by Byron) behind the cut:

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Addendum: Promised photos

Tired, and it's hard to think of much of anything right now but bed. Well, the air mattress, but whatever. The soft thing I can lie down on with Spooky and drift away into sleep and the muddy, garish flow of dreaming. But I did promise I would post a few more of Byron's Blackberry photos. They're behind the cut:

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