As I sit here worrying about a good friend of mine of the opposite sex who I'm rather attracted to (she's apparently falling for some guy she's never met but has talked to online and it seems as though she's going to meet him etc, which falls into my box of "usually shitty ideas"), I can't help but wonder why I care. Not about her, but anything in general. In the past few months I've lost my entire drive, will to learn, and confidence. I think daily about my ex who I can say with 99% assurance will never get back together with me, much less talk to me, regardless of how much I love her, miss her, and care about her. I've become completely apathetic to the world.

This can't be a good thing, but I can't break it. I want to study CS and learn to program games/software because it's a field I enjoy, but I can't even bring myself to study for the classes that will get me the degree or just study in general to learn how to code in whatever language. I would love to ask out the afformentioned female, but for whatever reason can't bring myself to do it. Perhaps I don't want to take a chance on ruining our friendship, but I think it would probably work out - I just don't think she agrees with that. I've become lazy, sluggish, and pretty much worthless. That and I seem to be sounding like a whiny little bitch at the moment, I'll try to amend that.

One could easily argue that I'm still down from my breakup in January with the one woman I've ever considered marrying which is true, but it shouldn't affect me in these ways. I shouldn't allow it to.

Screw, even my writing is going to hell. I've never had trouble expressing my thoughts on paper/word pad but I seem to be tonight so I'll just shut up and hope the person that follows me is more upbeat.
Today is my birthday!

PsionicMan, est. Oct. 12, 1983

Makes me a whopping 19 years old... not too amazing... nothing fun that comes with 19. Last year it was porn, lotto, and smokes oh my! Couple of years it will be alcohol. But for now, I must content myself with what I have.

It's my first birthday since I departed the simple era of my life and came down to Austin to attend school. It's been great so far. Don't really miss my family that much, and I can think of at least 2 reasons why. (1) they're only 3 hours away, and (2) my parents have discovered goddamn AIM. I would block them, but I have a feeling that would have a negative effect on my cash flow, on which I so desperately rely.

Later today, when it's no longer really night, my family is coming to visit. Not what I would have wanted, but then again, the presents and foods are not driving themselves. (I made a similar remark to my father over AIM, and he actually (yet jokingly) used the word "shit" (as what I am). Of course, he's done so before, but only in moments of great distress (such as when the power goes crazy in the middle of a defrag) as my mom, being sort of old fashioned, does not smile upon rampant cursing. I can only assume he had time to realize what he was saying as he typed, so I'll chalk it up to my mom not being able to eavesdrop on the textual conversation. It was sort of funny though. Did I mention I really wish I could block them?)

If everything goes according to plan, I should be in possession of the fabled gamecube by the end of the day. Yes, I am 19. Yes, I requested that. Next question.

My mother should also bring with her some foodstuffs. Hopefully that will entail cupcakes and "haystacks". The haystacks she brings will not be in any way related to the ones on that node. They're a delicious, magically magical substance consisting of (basically) corn flakes, peanut butter, and sugar. They are the perfect food. Seriously. I'm pretty sure their level of addictiveness is well beyond opium derivatives. I think I shall try to obtain information on how one makes said perfect food, and later post it on this very site. It would be criminal to tell you good folks about the glorious haystacks and not provide you with the means to create your own.

The cupcakes are going to be no less amazing, as I can only assume she shall top them with icing. "Duh" you say. Well, friends, this isn't just any old icing. It's sugar icing made of sugar featuring a special guest appearance by sugar. Plus a little vanilla, I think. Keeping with the drug comparisons, it'll give you a buzz far beyond any stimulant you've tried.

Getting away from the food topics, this will be the first birthday I've had while I've been an active member of E2, as the last one was during a random two months off from noding (the reason for which I cannot recall).

Thanks for the entertainment thus far, guys. With luck, E2 will still be around in some form or another when I hit 99...

Hope your day ends up being as good as mine!

Ah, the events of the day are done. Haystacks, cupcakes with fabled icing, a small bowl of the leftover icing, plus fig newtons club crackers and cheese in a can. Mmm, cheese in a can. I do indeed have a gamecube (black, looks slightly less immature and matches the PS2), along with Super Mario Sunshine. And a message inbox full of greetings from you guys here on E2! Thanks to everyone who /msg'd me.

My mom's going to email me the exact recipe, but for now, you shall have to be happy with a complete list of ingredients: corn flakes, peanut butter, sugar, and corn syrup. From those simple parts, one can manufacture heaven. It's modern alchemy, folks. And deliciously so.

Braunbeck's nephew's birthday party is tomorrow. The kid's newly 11, and he's been looking forward to this weekend for quite a while. However, I'm supposed to be on panels at a local SF convention, Context, until about 3 p.m. Hopefully after that I can drive out to the party.

His nephew is a huge horror movie fan. I have qualms about exposing young kids to excessively violent and gory movies -- but his own parents let him watch all manner of slasher flicks when he was barely out of kindergarten. His favorite movies include the Children of the Corn series, so at this point Braunbeck and I are going to focus on trying to introduce him to good horror movies. It might take a few years, though; when he put in The Exorcist he immediately wanted to fast-forward to the puking-and-head-spinning scene. He objected to our wanting to watch the first part of the movie, saying, "It's just boring blabber! The puke scene is cool!"

Well, with luck he'll think the present his uncle got him is pretty cool: we found an 18-inch-tall Leatherface figurine, complete with chainsaw. It's a wonderfully gruesome figure (a McFarlane creation, of course) though it takes batteries and the box doesn't say what kind.

We had all kinds of fun wrapping it tonight. I found some butcher paper, and we put the box in that, and then I found a dark red candle and flicked wax spatters over the paper to simulate blood sprays. A rusty-red marker let me put some bloody-looking prints on it. My other housemates oohed and aahed over the result, so hopefully le nephew will also get a kick out of it.

Speaking of McFarlane, Neil Gaiman recently won his lawsuit against Todd McFarlane. Gaiman had created the popular "Spawn" character Angela, and McFarlane had claimed all rights to the character and had not credited Gaiman on books he'd contributed to writing, had deprived him of deserved royalties, and had used other materials without his permission. The jury found for Gaiman on all counts, and the case is now entering the damages phase.

The biggest irony in all this is that in the 1992 contract between Gaiman and McFarlane (which McFarlane later violated), McFarlane said he would treat Gaiman "better than the big guys".

Yay, go Gaiman!

A clear case of bad luck?

I am reflecting on a bizarre week, the second week since returning to the office. I came in on Friday to find that my Internet connection has been chopped - Shucks! It seems that they monitor proxy usage, and mine has been too much. Too many hits on E2 and a few other places I guess, well, I might be able to justify this as research :-). But they are not giving me any real work to do, their online CBT application is broken - I am having to order courses specially burnt on CD!

I overhear a conversation between a salesman and one of the other project managers. It seems they have a requirement for a Clearcase person. Now I was using Clearcase extensively at the last client site, and I tell the project manager that. He quizzes me about my level of expertise. It seems that the client wants someone with clearcase admin skills and more experience - a Clearcase guru, I offer my assistance in the interview process, as I am experienced in change management.

When I take my lunch, I call a recruitment agent whom I have had dealings with in the past. I tell him about my own situation - that I am tentatively looking for another job, but not overly optimistic in this economic climate. I also tell him about the requirement for a Clearcase guru. He is keen and interested in helping if he can find he right person.

Later in the day, the salesman asks for help in recruiting said guru; I make a few phone calls, post to a discussion list and draw a blank.

At the end of the day, I find out who the client is, and, guess what, it's the same client as where I was working in September. Their resident Clearcase person is leaving, and there is nobody to replace them. I reckon that if I were still on site (see my day log of September 30, 2002), I could easily have convinced the client that I was up to the job. I have told our account manager that, and I will see what happens. It may be the case that they have to go through the formal interviewing process, find nobody suitable, then propose me to go back on site.

Ah well, c'est la vie. sic frangit biscuitus.

I am in love with the sound of leaves crashing into my feet.

Thank you to everyone who msg'd and emailed me to express their condolences for the loss of our cat, as detailed in my most recent (and quite the three-handkerchief) daylog. We're doing much better -- we still miss her very much, but it's becoming okay now. We did decide to adopt a cat this week after a lot of discussion about whether it was too early or not. She's curled up and snoozing on the bed just a few feet away right now -- she's an 11-month-old tabby, gray and white with bright orange patches. After getting to know her a bit better we decided to name her Harlequin ("Harley" for short) because a patch of bright orange on one side of her face makes her look as if she's wearing a mask. She's very energetic and affectionate. Shira still hisses and growls at her whenever she sees her, but seems to be getting used to the new situation little by little.

Today I went to the bank and got cash for our trip to Los Angeles}LA tomorrow. My stepbrother bought a house near USC and we're driving up to visit. He lives on 4th off Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. Wasn't it Chris Rock who said, "When you're on Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard anywhere in the country, you know there's some violence going down close by."? Ennyway, my parents arrived there on Thursday and we're all going to the flea market at the Pasadena Rose Bowl together. The market is supposed to be absolutely incredible, just huge and full of the most amazing things at low prices.

So I got out a little bit of cash, yes, and swept the leaves off the patio, and cleaned the catboxen, and took a walk to 7-11 for an RC Cola, and played StarCraft twice, and now I am going to email my half-sister-in-law Janis about the places she found that might buy Angela's painted glassware and then I'm going to write. And then pick Angela up from work.

Oh, yeah -- dann stayed with us on Monday night. Claypenny and her son met us at Rubio's for dinner and we all hung out together at our apartment for a bit talking. (We put My Neighbor Totoro on for Michael, and he was immediately sucked in. Yay.) We fed dann a fish burrito from Rubio's just so's he'd have an authentic San Diego experience, and sent him northward the next morning with a six-pack of Karl Strauss Red Trolley, San Diego in liquid form. Hope everyone had/is having a good time up in Portland.


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