This node is brought to you by Kmart

That's correct, Debbie has finally given up her battle for free AOL service and has joined the wonderful Kmart family: Woohoo! Anything is better than AOL. And surprisingly, crashes a hell of a lot less often than AOL did. I have to deal with a small ad banner on the bottom of my screen, but it's small, it doesn't really bother me too much.

Today I used up all my votes on E2 for the first time in months. I had to force myself to do it. I don't like to vote on stuff just to use a vote. I like to vote on stuff that I actually like. I rarely vote anything down, usually just up. So I visited the day logs and spread the wealth around there. It makes me feel guilty that I don't vote enough because people are kind enough to vote on my stuff. But there isn't really isn't any satisfaction in getting 15 XP points from using up all my votes, especially not in comparison to getting 15 XP from a C!hinged node with a +5 rep. But this time it was somewhat satisfactory because those 15 XP pushed me over the 1100 XP hump. I still have something like 21 write-ups to go to get to level 5 though. That's a bit frustrating. I have had enough XP for level 5 for well over a month now. Patience is a virtue…I will not press the Dr. Pepper button again…the elevator is coming….patience is a virtue…

Today we had the last of the birthday parties. My dad turns 59 next weekend but we had his birthday party early. It's the last of the summer gatherings. It makes me kind of sad. I have become so close to my family again since I have moved back home. I miss my college life, I miss Rochester, and I miss my friends but I love being home with my family. The best times we have together are the times when everyone just happens to show up at the house at the same time, totally unplanned. My family has the strangest conversations. I am always fascinated though. It's very difficult for us to have a discussion without 1) it getting heated 2) pulling out the 1980 Funk & Wagnall's Encyclopedia and 3) yelling. The heated part stems from each of us having a different opinion/idea while each of us insist that we are the correct individual. The encyclopedia thing is pretty damn funny. The books were published in 1980, possibly even earlier than that. And the yelling isn't actually a result of the heated argument, it's because there are five of us children and we learned at a very young age that if you wanna be heard, you gotta yell. We are an amazingly intelligent family and we all have good argumentative skills but the fun part of listening to us is in the way that we argue. We twist each other's thoughts and ideas around so badly, we team up on each other only to change teams in the middle of the argument, we take turns playing the devil's advocate and we interrupt each other constantly. I love to play the devil's advocate, I cannot help myself, it must be part of that middle child syndrome I keep hearing about. Today's subject of conversation was the use of rifles in the American Revolution. It was a rather dry subject to argue but it doesn't really matter the subject of conversation, it's the battle of wits. The constant challenge of one-upping each other. And of course, the ancient Funk & Wagnall's came out. It had to.

It's been awhile since I've felt the need to write about him. But it's happened again, the confusion is back. I still can't think clearly, all I can do is come up with a list of questions. How am I ever going to answer any of these if he isn't here to help? Am I justified in being angry with him for not being here to help me with the answers? And why do I have to feel so guilty all the damn time? It's his fault, not mine...isn't it?

By the way, the confusion never left, I've just gotten better at ignoring it.