6.27.2007

It's been years and years since I've called Dilbert "brilliant" or, honestly, even related to it.

I decided to check in on it today, and I dug through the past month of strips, which is where I found this gem. It sums up the entire reason I quit software development (the first time, and more recently, this time):





(if it's not showing up, click here)

6.26.2007

The news of the death of pro wrestler Chris Benoit and his family has hit me really hard.

Okay, quit judging me. I know I'm from the south, but I'm not a huge wrestling fan.

Seriously, I'm not. I promise.

I definitely used to be when I was a kid, though. I had subscriptions to WWF magazine, Pro Wrestling monthly AND Wrestler. Favorite all-time wrestler: a three-way toss-up between Brutus Beefcake, Jessie Ventura and the Million Dollar Man Ted DiBiase. The first because he was nuts, the second because he didn't give a shit about anyone or anything, and the third because of the Million Dollar Rap.

In 1998, I spent roughly 2 hours a night playing WCW vs NWO with my soon-to-be brother-in-law Jon and my best friend Mike. We'd get baseball bats and chairs from the crowd and beat the holy shit out of Macho Man Randy Savage. You'd think that'd get old... Get a chair, beat on Macho Man... Get a bat, beat on Macho Man...

Nope. Never got old.

These days, I tune in, oh, about once a month or so - whenever my strange-relation nephews (My father's daughter-from-previous-marriage's kids' kids... See? Easier just to call them nephews) are visiting and want to watch some huge muscled-out freak throw another huge muscled-out freak around a bit.

They really like Triple H, John Cena, and of course, Benoit. Personally, I find the world of wrestling today boring as shit, so I had no real affection for him as a wrestler.

But I did respect him as a man... Based on what little I knew of him.

He was a regular customer at the bike shop I did a lot of design work for, Bicycles Unlimited in Peachtree City. Through the past four or so years, I've seen him about 12 times. Every time he came into the shop, he was accompanied by his family. They seemed so happy...

The thing that struck me about Chris Benoit was that he was caring, attentive and most of all, patient - not just with his family, but with everyone in the store, all the time. He signed every autograph, answered every question, posed for every picture... Meanwhile, his kid Daniel would go try on helmets and elbow pads and point out which bikes he liked.

That's what has hit me so hard - the way Benoit seemed to be with his wife and his kid. I wasn't close to them, I didn't know them much at all. But it's the little things that stick with you, and someone in Benoit's position could easily have been a dick. He's stronger than most people, he's famous, he's rich... And he was just the nicest guy you could ever run into.

I mean, it's terrible to hear about, you know? Pro wrestler snaps, kills family - gruesome and terrible news, to be sure. But I've MET that family. I helped Daniel pick out a bike helmet while Nick the bike tech was in the back room getting Benoit's custom-made bike. I've talked to Benoit about the difference in height between my bike and his, and why I chose mine. I explained why the internet was such difficult territory for cycling shops, but that we could find ways to get the shop known. He asked questions. I explained them. I even suggested a brand of wireless router to him once, because I was "that internet guy at the bike shop" to him.

The guy shook my hand. He stood there and let me tell him that my nephews were huge fans of his. He smiled, he signed an autograph for each of them even though I told him no thanks, that I didn't want to interrupt his day with his family. He insisted anyway and did something that made Chamberlin's and Dakota's day.



He strangled his wife and smothered his kid. Then he hung himself in his weight room.

I just...



.

6.22.2007

About 3 years ago, I had one of those "executive chairs" they sell at Staples for about $150.00 bucks as my home desk chair. It was nothing compared to the Aeron chairs I sat in during my .com days, but still, it was alright.

Then, I broke it.

I was crestfallen. Not because the chair was particularly wonderful, but because I now had no place to rest my behind while typing on my computermachine.

Around the same time, my wife was pushing me to finally dispose of an old pink recliner that the former owners of our house so graciously left for us when they moved. She always hated it, I didn't mind it - it was quite coush and it did a particularly good job of providing a place to park the posterior.

So, I had a great idea: take the castors off the old "executive" chair and shove them into the base of the pink recliner.



Voila. The ultimate desk chair... Until yesterday.

I broke the recliner yesterday.



(Note that not all of this damage was done at once. The broken bolt that held the back to the base was the initial fault, then I ended up tearing the thing to shreds trying to get it down the stairs and out of the house. It's too bad it wouldn't fit through the window - it would have been a direct trip and saved me a lot of hassle).

(Also, don't judge me on the color or quality. It was free.)

(You're going to judge me anyway, aren't you? Fine. Do it. See if I care.)

Anyway, so yeah, I broke the shit out of that thing. So once again, I found myself with a desk and a computermachine and no place to sit so that I could use either. But it just so happens, my wife has been pressuring me to move the Sharper Image massage chair she got me for Christmas in 2000 out of our bedroom. In fact, she went so far as to shove it out the door while I was not home this past week, so I had no choice but get it downstairs... Which wasn't fun.

But it did make it awfully convenient to move it to the workshop, where I bored out 16 holes with a titanium-head drill bit and bolted heavy duty castors to the bottom of it. So, once again, I have the ultimate desk chair - only this one is even more ultimate, because while it rests my behind, it also massages it:






Now, to get the bastard upstairs...


(By the way, I was lying. I do care that you judged me. Now I hate you a little.)

6.15.2007

The 'shelf of fame.'


I'm not on it.

[this entry made via mobile phone. Please forgive any typos and/or pointlessness]

6.14.2007

The lobby of Penguin Books. I cant believe i am here.

[this entry made via mobile phone. Please forgive any typos and/or pointlessness]

6.11.2007

Wow, it's good to be back writing again.

I can honestly say that I threw out, oh, about 20 stories between November and now, just trying to get back into writing the way I know I love to write.

Doing the FarkTV thing... It was an interesting experience. It totally threw off the way I do what I do, for many reasons that I don't have the space, time or patience to get into right now. But it definitely did a number on the short-story writing process I am not only used to, but totally in love with.

But anyway, I'm back to writing stories for MI. And I have no choice but to it on a regular schedule - I have a March, 2008 deadline to turn in 10 voted chapters (which means minimum 40 stories on MI, 4 stories per chapter for voting).

Penguin don't play nice when it comes to breech of contract.

So yeah. Anyway.

I'm headed up to New York this week. I'll be spending a good bit of time working on some new stuff for my web sites. I'm consolidating everything, re-presenting everything... Getting stuff together. So watch this space for some new crap coming soon.