I was reminded yesterday of one I love by a red coat.

In 1998 we were watching a video together. The radiohead tour documentary meeting people is easy. Suddenly she paused the tape and exclaimed that it was her, her!, there on the screen throwing snowballs at Thom Yorke. It was only a fraction of a second. Her coat was a shock of red. Schindler's list melodrama.

In another part of MPIE, she presents a gift to Thom on behalf of the Japanese fan club. Althougth I saw her in that coat just once, its how I'll always remember her.

Maybe it will be my last memory before my neurons implode in a pang of regret. Her, running in slow motion, besides a snow bound train in northern Japan. The radiohead members being pelted by a posse of adoring Japanese girls.

The red dufflecoat on the shop rack, with the chunky wooden buttons is my graceful Yokohama girl pressing herself against the stage forever.

My grandfather is in the hospital right now. He just had a few quarts of fluid pumped out of his lungs. I've just discovered this after a 6 hour drive down the length of California. He went in for an angioplasty, last week. But his artery popped, and he was in critical condition for several days. Then he went home. I was coming home to Los Angeles to visit him, as he was making his recovery. But something happened, and he's in the hospital again.

My grandfather shares a lot of things with me. First of all, we have the same name. But more than that, we have that strange urge, the need to wander and know everything, that very few other people in my family do. He's really the only person who understands that in me. 4 years ago we spent a month wandering around the western US. We are very different, obviously.. he grew up in the Depression in South Dakoda, and i grew up 60 years later in LA. And just like me, i guess, he is always open to change. He was on the internet before I was. And i still am amazed by how he reacted when i brought my girlfriend out to the desert to meet him. My girlfriend is Asian, and so far as i know no one in my family has gone out with anyone who isn't white. Also, she has green hair. And she is a vegan, which is something someone who grew up in the depression couldnt possibly understand. So, i expected it to be weird. It already was weird, because we weren't actually going out yet, although we were in love. we had other stuff to deal with. Anyway, i climbed up on a rock across the road to think. While my girlfriend was still in camp, my grandfather started talking to her... and he immediately told her that he could tell we made a good team. Nothing weird, nothing pushy... I feel like shit for expecting anything else from him. He's a good guy.

He's a really good guy.. and I'm really worried about him. That's why i made it a point to come down to LA so fast. He's 79, and although our family is healthy, 79 is pretty old. I know that even after he's gone I'll be able to feel his presence, when the thunderstorms are rolling across the desert on a hot August night. And I hope wherever he ends up, he'll be free, the way I know he needs to be. And I hope my grandmother and him end their journey together, many years from now, because they have done everything together since they got married over 60 years ago. And lastly, I hope when I'm 80, i can say I've been as many places and improved as many lives as he has. If so, I'll be happy to release my spirit to the desert too.

"Easy Rider 75 you are weapons hold."
"Lazing…now, now, now."
"Easy Rider, you are advised that if target closes within 100 yards of contact you are weapons release at ATO discretion."
"Roger last."

They're out there in the NAG lighting up a target pursuing one of our Rigid Hull Inflatable Boats, chasing the boat out of somewhere it not should have been at the time. They're armed, 76 mm Bofors, 20 mm cannon, 7.62 mm machine guns. They do not know but there is an SH-60B carrying four AGM-114B Hellfire missiles watching them some miles away and prepared to shoot. My brother is on that aircraft, the closest that I have to family in this land of those that would wish to kill anyone with an American flag on their shoulder. I cannot stop this; I can simply listen to the transaction over the radios in a calmly cooled Combat Information Center aboard the USS Shiloh. I know that 75 runs from the USS Fletcher, I know that my brother sits strapped into a seat some miles from where I am now and plays the hand for what it is worth on this particular occasion. They will eventually break off pursuit after a few miles.

"Easy Rider 75, lazing secured. Target has terminated pursuit."
"Roger last and lazing secure. Green deck set, 75 clear for 1 for 1 and hot pump."

I do not know how to come home any more. After spending 330 out of the last 420 days deployed in an operational capacity, I find the lack of anything to do disconcerting. Not only the lack of a mission, the lack of a tangible purpose seems to find it's way back to where I am now to pervert the simple act of a handshake with a welcome home. I still do not belong here; I am an asset and something to be used for the purpose of making sure that someone falls faster.

'God, grant me forgiveness for the lives I have taken in your name.'

Don't you people get it? Don't you understand? We're shooting at them and they're shooting at us and we've been at this for ten years? Blowing up their radar stations is nothing new. That they're firing off anti-aircraft missiles is nothing new, the subsequent display of 'injured civilians' resulting from an 'imperialist American air-raid' is nothing out of the ordinary. Ten years folks, ten years. A change in presidents will mark no significant policy shift when it comes to where we're going. With the gas pedal full down we're heading somewhere fast, I just hope that someone knows where it is that we're going.

I want to go back. I want the responsibility and the pressure back. Being here at home seems hollow and stupid compared to operating where the difference between excellence and mediocrity is counted out in human lives. The sense of accomplishment has evaporated, the tension gone I am unsure what to do with myself other than consume the remainder of a bottle of Glenmorangie.
Alone and awake at 2:30 in the morning I read the words again to only realize that the homecoming was a hollow one. All of the assertions to the contrary are nothing more than the same lies, she never thought I would find her here. She never thought I was serious when I told her I loved her. In return, I am placed in the care of karma I have created. It is better that I elected to stay. Better somehow that I reenlisted in the shadow of an object of war, the symbology of violence that I have served so well. Carving another scar into this frozen heart seems stupid compared to what I once was. I remember the idealist child walking into the Albuquerque MEPS for the first time July 17, 1993, I just wish I could find him again.

Now, a blatant plug for Phase Maintenance

I haven't noded a day log in a while because I have been too damn busy at work. I need to figure out how to make my home life more interesting so that I don't feel like staying at work so much. Friday finally came, and I'm glad, but I still haven't found a reason to not work this weekend (yes, that means I'm stupid enough, and have a sorry enough life that I'm considering going in this morning, Saturday. No, I'm not trying to evoke pity. Just making an observation.)

Meanwhile, I got all of my W-2's, and made a quick estimate of my situation. Not very good... (okay, I'll admit that a) its my fault and b) other people have it worse). I'll owe about $4K.

Here in Boston, were were recently given a so-called bill of rights by the T (our area's subway organization). They spoke of clean, safe, on-time, and so on, but they didn't mention about having to stand almost every ride. Oh well. I once again remind myself to get over it.

Wake up. What? What the fsck am I doing awake at this time? Geez. Sleep.
Awaken from the middle of a dream where I'm driving down a steep hill in a sleigh and was just going to masturbate in the wind. Umm. Weird things do attempts to stop excessive masturbation do to you, eh? For a moment I'm both in dreamworld and real world, which is pretty confusing. I doze the morning erection off, and this half-sleep I dream that I already got up and connected to 'net. When the link establishes, phone rings and I realize I'm still in bed. Get up.
Attempt to get Eterm working. As is customary, 'make uninstall' didn't clean everything and so my mixed 0.9/0.9.1 install totally fscks everything up. Compiling 0.9.1 with -O4 results in illegal code and crashes. I'm slightly pissed off, go on a rm -rf spree and finally manage a 0.9 that almost works (but is still damn slow). And why does Eterm 0.9 insist on installing to /usr (and doesn't work if I do ./configure --prefix=/usr/local), while CVS Eterm 0.9.1 goes to /usr/local, except for terminfo entry which goes to /usr ?
I get in a fight with almost-friend I've been assisting him in batmud for past 6 months and he refuses to do even a minor favor when I ask him, and instead insists today that I stop whatever I'm doing to help him, if I want _him_ to tell _me_ about good money areas. I tell him, rather elaborately, to fuck off. He doesn't reply after few weak objections.
My little brother's friend's playing slicks on our secondary computer. I tell him to get lost (I'm already slightly pissed off with the world) in 15 minutes. He sneaks away in 5, and I get to computer to do my VGAP turn. RSTs from two games get mixed up, fucking up VPA.DB. I sigh, swap them, unpack again, and only now I realize I just fucked up my VPA5.DB that contained 6 months of game history of vast tactical value. I get really pissed off, hit/kick walls and basically everything that people usually hit when they really need something to drain their adrenaline over. VPA contained turn data for turns 2 - 48, when I unpacked turn data for turn 6 from another game, it figured "right, overwrite turn 6 and save 6 turns, turn 6 I just received being the newest". Geez.
After failed attempts to undelete with DOS 6.0 undelete.exe, I get online and write Alex Ivlev an e-mail where I ask him to GPL the VPA source because I want to fix 'certain misbehaviours'. I close the link and go back to computer to ponder. I try to check winplan helps with winhelp, but suddenly windows decided to GPF winhelp everytime I try to run it. Gee. World just needs to be against me at every turn. At this point I realize my throat is full of mucus. As I try to gag it out, I vomit everything I have eaten for a while but the mucus just sticks. I feel like shit.
I really need to tell about this day somewhere before my head explodes. For reasons evident from above entries, I get here and write a daylog entry. As I log in E2, I notice someone has upvoted what seems like every entry of AC tech tree, among others. Thank you :); the timing was perfect. Are you prescient or something?
My "weekend off" turned into a "dismantle the existing kitchen". Well, I got a lie in till 9am for a change. And ripping out disgustingly dirty kitchen units is quite theraputic, in a way.

I also did a lot of the filling we always put off. I do things like that as stress relief, anyway, so I quite enjoyed it. (Sad case...)

The old kitchen has been reassembled. The fridge is back. The drier is where we ripped out the old (dirty, dirty, dirty) oven and hob, right next to the washing machine. We'll be cooking on combi microwave and freestanding hot plates for some time, I guess, as we're not installing the new kitchen until after the loft conversion (at least, that's the current plan).

I spent the rest of the day reading about docbook and installing the XML DTD and XSL stylesheet. I've been thinking about using docbook for a while. With the DTD and stylesheet, I now have everything I need. (I like editing my mark-up by hand. Heck, I hack MS-RTF files by hand when MS-Word screws the dot-doc file up.) What am I going to use it for? Who knows.

What should I have been doing? Well, I promised you lot I'd get some document object model docs up... But it's all so demoralising - I can't find out who supports what version of which object model! (I'm hoping if I leave enough deadlinks pointing to document object model, I'll cave in and node it eventually...)

It was my birthday on the 9th of February and my girlfirend Nicky gave me a card she had made. One the front of the card she had drawn dawn from 30,000 feet. The note inside read:
This is one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen. On the flight home from Vietnam I was on such a high and while everyone else slept throught the night I watched the sky. For about four hours we were flying with this most amazing perpetual dawn, following it, caught in this beautiful moment. As far as I could see the night was broken with a streak of colour until it curved away with the earth. In the sky above, tiny white stars were out and below the sky was filled with incredible thunder clouds which flashed with lightening. It was so peaceful, at the quiet limit of the world, looking down, frozen just at that moment when everything is about to happen and I felt time didn't exist anymore and I was just floating with the dawn. I feel like that when I'm with you, like I'm going to explode because I'm so happy and becuase I love you.
Today was a mental health day.

I had a long hard week at work. I needed to unwind and my shins still hurt from doing shin conditioning drills at Wing Chun.

I did my taxes earlier this week and had discovered that Uncle Sam was going to be sending me a couple of large checks in the mail. I say "a couple" because I mean, of course, both the state and federal taxes and they're both large. The tax break on student loan interest is a total godsend, making me think that student loans may not be the form of indentured servitude I always claim it to be.

After sending in my tax forms I start to make a list of what to do with the money.

  • Get a tune up/new muffler/new shocks/whatever it needs for my car.
  • Buy new shoes and a set of baat jaam do for my kung fu class.
  • Buffer the checking account.
  • Buy upgrade stuff for my computer.
That last one should read, in fact, "Buy stuff for a new computer" because mine is so old the upgrade route requires pretty much a new everything.

Alas, after shopping around for the computer bits I want, I noticed that the balance on my credit card was way too hight and I need to throw a lot of my return money at it. Well... I don't need to, but I should. This pretty well prevents the new computer stuff portion of my list.

So today, feeling pretty bummed, I go out and buy a used power supply for my current machine. The old one is dying and making a hell of a lot of noise. The fan is going. In addition to the power supply, the shop also had a used 120 MHz Pentium processor, which is the fastest my motherboard would accept (I was running on a 90 MHz at the time). So I got that as well.

I spent the day drinking Mountain Dew, eating cold pizza, and playing with hardware. I haven't gotten to geek out in a long time, and it was a nice change of pace.

Today I had a life-altering experience. After the usual get up, jack off, go to baseball practice and node at E2 all day long, my life will be forever changed by a typical trip to the video store.

It was my mom's idea to rent a movie, and I thought , "What the hell? Maybe I'll actually see something good." So a movie called Fight Club caught my attention. Y'know. The one all my friends had been yelling at me to see. So I did. Now I've changed for a nerdy, philosophical, speech team introvert to a wanna-be scitzophrenic terrorist scheming to throw the world into totalitarianistic anarchy (how's that for an oxymoron). Though it's been just 20 minutes since I saw the movie, my life shall never be the same........
I posted some nodes today, played Diablo2, and read some comics of PVP I missed (that stuff is funny as hell). I've also been reading quite a bit:
-Sword in the Stone
-The Hobbit (been a long time)
-The Story of B
-Biology Textbook (...)
-Geometery Textbook

The biology textbook I have to read in order to study for that class, but why have I been reading my Geometery book you ask? I've been pondering making a full fledged geometery program in Python using Tk. Sure, it may sound like the usual, "do your homework for you because you don't get it" program, I actually understand geometery. If it could do the homework I'd have alot more time to study. Of course, it would have to be very fast in order to be worthwhile, as solving geometery proofs usually doesn't take that long shorthand. I could also just do it for the common good, I'm sure some kids out there would like to learn the parts of the textbook their teacher skipped.

well.... i fucked myself up again! just over a year has gone by, and again i go into the emergency room. i was picking up becky at the karate studio and i decided that i was going to grapple a little with another student there. grappling is very much like judo, and ju-jitsu. so ward and i grappeled, i kicked his ass, and we grappled some more. a little later that night i ended up grappling with a fellow instructor of becky's, who haoppens to be 6'3" and 230lb soon to be 3rd degree black belt. so he and i grappled, and much to my suprise i beat him fair and square, and also in under minute. i was forced to quit high school wrestling my senior year due to a pretty horrendous injury, and havn't wrestled since. so we grappled again, so that he could redeam himself, and once agian i was in the process of kicking his ass when my knee popped. turns out, a ligament in my knee was stressed so much that it pulled a small piece of bone off. so now i'm in an immobilizing leg brace, and walking around on cruthces, plus they gave me some pretty cool drugs!! it sucks, but i still had a blast.

Woke up at 8:30 to go to the computer show with CR and P. We spent about an hour there, CR got 512MB of PC133 CAS2RAM for about $200. We then went to a greasy burger joint in Ft Lauderdale for lunch and swung by to pick up CR's new glasses.

I got home, my brother wanted to go to the gym. I just wanted to take a nap, but I knew going to the gym would be a better choice in the long run, so I went with him and worked our for a little over an hour there.

I got back home in time to take a shower and leave again to meet up with JS and his wife to go out to the astronomy get-together. At first we were just meeting up at a local county park to look around and decide what to do from there. A few people decided to get together out west of town (like 30 miles west) for a better view, so we went along.

It was amazing. I could actually see the milky way and a zillion stars. I could actually see at least 20 times as many stars out there as I can from home. We stayed there until about 2am, looking through telescopes at various interesting objects in the sky. If you've never been able to look up at the sky while far from city lights (at least 30 miles from any city), you must try it. It's breathtaking.

It's now 3am; I just got home and now it's definitely time for sleep. It was a busy day. I thought about Sara often; maybe I'll ask her if she's interested in going next time.

I went to my friend Joe's house and he had an idea of going to some concert that was taking place in Weslaco. I said, "Sure, why not?" Before we left, however, I called up cp to see if she could go with us. She ended up not going in which an interesting conversation came up involving what defines a nerd and a geek. Anywho, Joe and I left to the concert.

We got there a little earlier and decided to drive around for a bit and talk. I ended up driving close to my work and I thought, "Hey, my friend Rosalie told me that she lives by here, maybe I can find her car." I ended up finding her car and sat inside my own wondering if I should get down. "Just get down dude." Joe said. I figured, "Why not? We haven't talked in months."

I got off the car and rang the doorbell. I saw Rosalie coming towards the door, I ducked behind her door. She opened up and I believe that she was pretty shocked to see me there. I mean I haven't talked to her in months and then *poof* I'm ringing her doorbell. She immediately walked outside with us and sat down on her porch (which made me smile). Joe and I sat down as well. She and I talked for what seemed like twenty minutes, but in reality was an hour and a half. It's just so funny around her, she always says the kookiest things. It was an odd little experience talking to her again. We just messed around like we always used to, talking about stupid stuff that have no relevance to anything in general. On my way out I got her number, and she got mine.

Joe and I went back to the concert and had learned that two of the four bands had already played. While there I saw an old friend of mine that i hadn't seen in a long time. Her name is Liz Loy. She is/was the best friend of my ex girlfriend Ruby. It was so funny because we just picked up where we last left off, messing around like we always do. While the bands were playing we were pretending to have our own private, but gentle, mosh pit. It was so funny watching her take pictures of the bands. I always laugh when I see people take pictures. Their face scrunches up so much to just look into one peephole. I don't know, maybe its just me.

Later on in the show, doof walked in. I had seen him earlier but didn't go and talk to him. I still didn't talk to him. I just watched him be all stupid in some three person mosh pit and his little faery dances. I think he's a fag and just doesn't know it.

Afterwards Joe and I dropped off a couple of our friends who lied to their parents. "Naughty naughty girls," I told them. I made them listen to Madonna on the way to their house, I love Madonna....but they didn't.

After we dropped off our friends we went to the city park and just got off and layed down on the benches. We talked for a long while, mostly me. See my life has been real fucked up lately. It involves a lot of angst towards friends and loved ones. I guess I'm just PMSing in some weird guy way. I ended up taking Joe home around one and went home myself.

Yea well today I woke up around 7 in the morn I had to be at work at 9 so I had to get ready. Well work was the usual fucking boring I was there for like 8 hours only 3 people walked in the whole day, and they were only there to pick up their checks.

I got home and changed. My friend Lupe called me and we went to some punk show put on buy some bands from the high school we went to. We arrived at Friends and Faces a local bar here in town. The cover was 3 bucks we got in. Later on we went outside we saw a lot of our old friends there.

I saw that cool guy cureobsession go inside with Joe. I was talking to some friends when Sean and Alexis show up and ask me if I wanted to mosh with them and I said sure. We went inside waited for some heavy music but nothing so we said fuck it and we started. I love moshing. Nobody ever joined until the band third and long started throwing out free shit. I got this cool Ernie ball] T-shirt (I love those Super Slinky strings 100 gauge I am a bassist) and when they did started to join in.

After that we stayed there to play pool and I ended getting home like at 6 in the morning and I had to be at work at 9 but that’s ok Sunday is even more dead I slept for like an hour and a half and got paid for it.

This is a day in retrospect, so I must be brief as memories are fleating:

A Very Interesting Day

  • Went to JSA sushi making party with girlfriend.
  • Went to United Noodles Asian Grocery. Bought lots of Japanese Snack Food including Pocky.
  • Stayed over at girlfriend's house to avoid traveling in big winter storm. Her roommate walked in on us while I was naked. That sucks.
  • In the morning I got plowed in. Details in my node, Gopher Towing.

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