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Drinking mercury to the mystery.

Behind the storms of Saturday night and Sunday morning came an enormous wind. The breath of the sky, blowing across Atlanta. Cooler weather, too. A low in the forties (F) last night, and only the low seventies today. Warmer tomorrow. But this wind is impressive, and there were gusts last night to 35 mph. (or 56.32 kph). Today, it's still blowing strong.

And speaking of that which blows...or sucks...or both...

Tomorrow, I have to be in Birmingham for a noon dental appointment (that's my one pm), which means leaving the house by ten ayem, at the latest. And maybe this molar, the one that was cracked in the Great Seizure of October '07, will be pulled, and maybe it won't be. Hopefully, we'll be back in Atlanta before sunset. However, if I return one more tooth shy, I'll be out of commission for at least a couple of days, which means no writing and no packing. We only have 15 days until we go back to Birmingham to get everything that's in storage there (and has been since November 2002) and only 18 days until the move to Providence. There is not time for mouth trauma, but that means nothing to how things will be.

Yesterday...a very bad day. But, and still, we read through all that has been written on Chapter One of The Red Tree. It's better than I recall. Maybe I can get back to work on the chapter late this week, after the dentist. That's all the writing-work there was to yesterday. I had a very hot bath. We packed and packed and packed, mostly books. I had to order a new battery for my iBook ($139.02, so ouch), and Spooky had to reserve the U-Haul truck for the 27th. About six pm, I left the house and walked to (ugh) Starbuck's, because our landlord needed to show the place to a prospective tenant. I sat and drank, overpriced mediocre coffee and finished Chris Beard's book on the origin of anthropoids. A rather good last chapter, largely devoted to the problem of Henry Fairfield Osborn's racism and also to the ongoing issue of "pithecophobia"* An hour later, I walked home again, to learn that the prospective tenant never fucking showed, so I'd exiled myself to an hour at Starbuck's for naught. After dinner, more packing, until, finally, I begged Spooky for a comfort movie, so we watched Serenity again. I was in bed by three, a little late, but there you go. Seven hours sleep.

As for today, I expect I'll wash my hair, then spend the rest of it working on the Palaeozoic Museum in New Babbage and, well, packing. Only about half the books in my office are boxed. There's no chance I'll get any writing done today, between the distractions and the impending dentistry, and I'm not up to that sort of futility — sitting here, struggling to write through the chaos. And I need to drop Vince an email about Sirenia Digest #30. That's a tiny smidge of work, I suppose.

Yesterday, jtglover asked me, "What do you think is your best story? Top three?" And I said I'd think about it and post a reply today. It's damned difficult, and the list changes so frequently. But right now, I'd say they are:

1. "Houses Under the Sea" (from Thrillers II, Cemetery Dance Publications, 2007; to be reprinted in The Mammoth Book of Best New Horror Vol. 19).

2. "La Peau Verte" (from To Charles Fort, With Love, Subterranean Press, 2005).

3. "In View of Nothing" (Sirenia Digest #16, March 2007; to be reprinted in A is for Alien)

I would also list, among my "best" short stories, "The Ape's Wife,", "The Steam Dancer," "Andromeda Among the Stones," "The Road of Pins," "Riding the White Bull," "A Season of Broken Dolls,", and "So Runs the World Away." Your mileage will vary, as this is a terribly subjective question. And there are several stories I feel guilty for not including. Anyway, Herr Ornithorhynchus just showed up with my coffee, steamy hot and not mediocre, so I shall wrap this up.

* A psychological disorder that paleontologist William King Gregory sardonically "discovered" to account for those suffering from an irrational fear of apes and monkeys, stemming from the truth of humanity's own common ancestry with them ("Two views of the origin of man," 1927; Science 65: 601-5). The term derives from the Greek (pithekos ape + phobos fear). Sadly, it's probably as common now as it was is Gregory's day. Hence, creationism and its gussied-up stepchild, "intelligent" design.

Comments

( 8 comments — Have your say! )
(Deleted comment)
greygirlbeast
May. 12th, 2008 05:47 pm (UTC)

I hope that your day of hair-washing and word-creating goes very well, before tomorrow, and whatever haze follows, thereafter.

Danke. By the way, we need to make plans for me to get this copy of Sunshine to you.
sclerotic_rings
May. 12th, 2008 05:38 pm (UTC)
If it helps, I'll be at the dentist at exactly the same time, getting a new crown fitted and another cast. Your idiot big brother would take some of the pain for you if he could, but I may have to settle for mailing goodies instead.
greygirlbeast
May. 12th, 2008 05:50 pm (UTC)

If it helps, I'll be at the dentist at exactly the same time, getting a new crown fitted and another cast. Your idiot big brother would take some of the pain for you if he could, but I may have to settle for mailing goodies instead.

Ah, the whimsy of happenstance. It's not so much the pain I mind, as the invasiveness and the inconvenience. But, thanks.
unknownbinaries
May. 12th, 2008 06:17 pm (UTC)
At risk of sounding like a creepy fangirl stalker, I am going to miss having my favourite author pretty much around the corner.

I am also quite jealous at your ability to escape the unholy weather here for cooler climes. I keep threatening wolven with a relocation to Russia or Sweden (I've got family there!) in retaliation for convincing me to move to this this exhaust-filled, sunburn-causing sauna.
greygirlbeast
May. 12th, 2008 06:53 pm (UTC)

I am also quite jealous at your ability to escape the unholy weather here for cooler climes. I keep threatening [info]wolven with a relocation to Russia or Sweden (I've got family there!) in retaliation for convincing me to move to this this exhaust-filled, sunburn-causing sauna.

While I agree that Atlanta's artificial microclimate is a horrific and unhealthy thing to endured (having done so the last five years), still, the cold of Rhode Island is the greatest challenge this move poses for me.

unknownbinaries
May. 12th, 2008 09:42 pm (UTC)
As long as it isn't damp, and my favourite type of cold is too much so to be damp, I'm fine. Snow is great. Both make me feel more...awake. Sharper. Winters here are depressing, soggy things.

Good luck in the frozen North. I'm sure Herr Platypus will be a great yak deterrent. :)
greygirlbeast
May. 12th, 2008 09:55 pm (UTC)

As long as it isn't damp, and my favourite type of cold is too much so to be damp, I'm fine. Snow is great. Both make me feel more...awake. Sharper. Winters here are depressing, soggy things.

Good luck in the frozen North. I'm sure Herr Platypus will be a great yak deterrent. :)


It's the polar bears I fear.

And I do fear the Providence winters, situated at the confluence or two rivers and Narragansett Bay, will be damp.
humglum
May. 13th, 2008 02:49 am (UTC)
It's the polar bears I fear.

pffft.

All yol have to worry about are black bears, and as far as I know, there haven't been any sighted in Providence... yet.
( 8 comments — Have your say! )