Monday, August 26, 2013

Because Blogging is Cheaper Than Therapy....

Last February after a long break from work, I got a job.
I got it for two reasons: (1) the extra money would be nice and (2) I was going stir-crazy staying at home all the time.
To be honest, the second reason was what really motivated me to go out and get a job. Anytime you're sitting at home, contemplating wrapping your head in toilet paper just to see what it looks/feels like, that's usually a good sign that you're spending way too much time alone. 
Either that or you should get your own YouTube channel.
Anyway, last February I went out and got my job at the comic shop.  I love my job. I like my coworkers. I even like about 98% of the customers who come into the store. 
But this job, which was supposed to just save my sanity, and give me a little break from my real job as a writer, has somehow eaten my life.  I work five days a week and when I come home I'm so tired that any attempt at writing results in me just sitting, staring at my laptop's screen.
These days, when I come home from work, I don't even bother trying to write anything. I just turn on the comp and go to YouTube or Hulu or somewhere and watch videos or listen to music. 
I don't want to quit my job. I really like it. But I said I'd have the sequel to Dawnwind out in 2013 and I haven't even hit the 30,000 word mark.
And even if I give up my job, I'm afraid that may not solve the problem. I'm worried, ladies and gentlemen, that I may have shot my creative wad (if you'll pardon the language) with the last book.
I think about that and it makes me want to throw myself out a window.
A bottom floor window, onto some soft cushions.
But still, you get what I'm saying.
Forgive me if this post is a bit more rambly than most, but I just felt the need to put this out there and get it off my chest.  I think I've been thinking about this way too long.
Add to that the headaches of looking for a house of my own and, well, you can understand why I'm a bit . . . dispirited.
So, what next?
I suppose I have to make some decisions about work and life and everything. It feels very adult saying that, ladies and gentlemen.
Adulthood sort of sucks when it's not awesome.
I shall keep you informed of what I do.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Carbs, Vodka & Video Recordings

Good afternoon, gentle readers.

The other day one of the store’s regular customers, Stevie B, came in with his lovely wife, Heather, and their little girl. They were there to replace some comic boxes that the family cat had destroyed and Stevie B was recording the trip to be shown on their YouTube show, Married To a Nerd.

I was in the video and watched it the other night.

Two things about my appearance in the video struck me straight away. The first is that I sounded awful. This does not come as a surprise, as no one sounds like they actually think that they sound. Also, at moments during the recording, I sound suspiciously like the characters Bruce from Family Guy. You know him. He’s the gay guy with a thousand different jobs. That was sort of shocking.

The second thing that struck me was that I should really go on a diet. I’m not, like Jabba the Hut fat or anything, but I’m slowly getting there.

Now, I can’t do anything about the voice. I sound like I sound.

But I can do something about the weight. So, this morning I resolved to start a diet. I would try to cut back on the carbs. Eat less bread. Eliminate soda from my diet. Eat more veggies. Y’know, practical things.

Of course I resolved to do this before checking the fridge. I have a two-liter bottle of Cherry Cola, a microwavable chicken Parmesan dinner, and a six pack of pre-mixed Smirnoff screwdrivers. Also, a bag of broccoli w/cheese sauce.


So much for kicking carbs today.

I’m still determined to diet, but I’m going to have to postpone it until I have cleaned out what’s in the fridge. And, even though I’m sure I could eat everything in there today, I really don’t feel like drinking an entire six pack of Smirnoff screwdrivers.

So, the diet is on hold until I finish the booze.

I just hope I don’t forget and go buy some more the next time I’m in the store.

Because that would be tragic.



Now, if you’ll excuse me, ladies and gentlemen, I think I will go have a screwdriver.

Monday, August 12, 2013

A Haiku

Hello, gentle readers.
Forgive me for not posting anything particularly long today, but I'm not feeling that well. Also, the local housing market has, once again, kicked me in the teeth.  With that said, I offer the following haiku. It sums up my feelings regarding my current house hunt quite well.

Houses slip away
Either contracted or sold.
I quietly despair.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Adventures in House Hunting

Good evening, gentle readers.  As I type this, the sun is edging gently toward the western horizon and I am sipping a giant mango daiquiri.
Yes, gentle readers, it's been that kind of day.
For the last seven hours, I have been looking at houses.  Now, I've written about my house hunt before and bored everyone, but today is the first time I've devoted hours to actually physically looking at houses.
Ironically, the day started off in a not so great light. The house that I really wanted to look at got sold on Saturday night.  This is the second time this has happened to me with this house so, obviously, I am not meant to purchase this particular domicile.
Thank you, gods of real estate, I got the message. Strike one.
So, with that house out of the way, I decided to drive by and check out a couple of other homes.
The first was in a nice part of town, the house looked okay from the road, but the neighborhood didn't appeal to me.  There was too much traffic from a major highway and the condition of a lot of the yards was not the best.  Ironically, drive just up the street a block or two and the houses were spectacular.
So, strike two.
The second house I looked at was all the way on the other side of town.  Driving all the way out there was a trek. I felt, at times, like I should stop and pick up provisions for the trip.  Eventually, I made it to my destination.
Now, normally when I assess a house for the first time, the agent isn't with me and,to be honest, I'm more interested in the neighborhood.  This time, though, I parked my car, got out and explored the area surrounding the house itself.  The yard was nice, big, but not too big.  I squashed my face up against a back door and saw part of the kitchen and the front room.  They looked okay.  The HVAC looked newish and so did the roof. Could I have found my house? Was my quest at an end?
I summoned my realtor and we took a look inside.
Oy vey.
I quickly learned why they had a new roof. Every room in the place had water damage.  There were holes in the walls. The parts of the kitchen I could not see before were less than stellar. There was no stove, the refrigerator was a science experiment gone horribly wrong and I swear the dishwasher was trying to escape the house.
This house was a true disappointment. It was like going home with a pretty woman only to have her remove her makeup, revealing herself as a hideous gorgon.
So, strike two.
Dispirited by this point, I nevertheless agreed to my realtor's request that we look at another house. This house was one I had dismissed because it had an in-ground pool in the back yard.  I thought maintaining it would be a real pain in the butt so decided to pass without looking inside the house.
I wasn't expecting much when we got to the house.
Walking into the back yard, it was nice. Fenced. Not too much grass. And the pool looked smaller. I thought, Hmm. I wonder if I could get it capped?  My realtor suggested filling it in with dirt and planting grass.  It was something to consider.
We went into the house and, gentle readers, I was blown away.  The house measures about 1600 square feet, but it felt so much bigger.  The front of the house was one long room with a kitchen at one end and a fireplace/dining room/living room at the other.
The master bedroom on the rear of the house was gigantic and looked out over the back yard. It had a huge walk in closet.
The bathroom was a nice size and had a separate shower and tub.  There were two other bedrooms, each of modest size, with good sized closets.
There were, however, a couple of things that struck me.  Two of the electrical outlets looked damaged so I'm thinking the wiring might be going. Another thing was that the back room was curling slightly.  Also, the house has an older style heating system with a down draft vent in the hallway.  Not crazy about walking on that.
On the other hand, though, there were enormous rooms and hardwood floors throughout the place.
So, not a strike, but not a hit either. 
Let's call it a tip.
I'm thinking about making an offer on this house. My realtor is doing some research. We're going to get together later this week and discuss it.
Until then, I'm sitting here, wondering.  How much of a hassle would it be to have a house with a real, live working pool?