Friday, February 29, 2008

140th Post - Valley Time

Welcome to my parent's home in the Annapolis valley. I arrived here this morning and have been on the go ever since

My mother came home from the hospital during the lunch hour. After that I got my hair cut really short. Went shopping with my father after that before coming back here to prepare dinner and visit with my sister. Returned to the house again where I got the fixings for a chili in.a crockpot a little while ago

I am still on call for the next 24 hours. Because of that I brought home my lap top. If I get a call I'll will have to use this BlackBerry as a tethered modem in order to get internet connectivity here

Newbie got sick on the way down here this morning. He just doesn't travel well. It was great fun cleaning out his carrier this morning

Very tired. Long week. Time for bed. Will write more on Saturday

Via BlackBerry Enterprise Server

Thursday, February 28, 2008

139th Post - Still tired

I didn't get any calls from work last night/this morning, for which I was grateful. However, 5:30 still came very early for me. I worked all day but knew that I'd be off tomorrow. Went to Costco after work and bought some canned meat.

Very interesting post so far, huh?

I will be posting from the blackberry all weekend because I'll be visiting my parents in the Annapolis Valley starting tomorrow. My mother may be released from hospital on Friday as well. I have promised to do some cooking for them, probably making one of my world-famous chilis for them in their crockpot.

Won a coffee yesterday at Tim Horton's. Drinking too much coffee these days. I usually have one medium coffee a day (with an orange juice in the afternoon), but on Thursday I had an extra large in the morning and a large in the afternoon. Far too much coffee. Jitters.

Time for bed. 44 is not what it is cracked up to be.


Wednesday, February 27, 2008

138th Post - Tired!

My phone rang at 3:15 this morning. I had to do what I do best at that early hour. By the time we finished, it was a few minutes past the time I normally get up and get ready for work. So, I went up stairs, I think I got undressed, and had my shower. I put some clothes on, if I recall correctly, fed the cats, ate something, and left for work. Because Patricia is out of town for a day or so, I was able to go directly to our parking space and walk to work. I arrived at work just past 7:30.

Worked all morning, not having time for a coffee break at 10, to wrap up the work from this morning. Had a Toastmasters executive meeting at lunch, so I worked through my lunch for that. Worked all afternoon, but did take a coffee break. After work, I walked to where I park the car and drove the car downtown, parking it closer to the TM meeting place. Attended Toastmasters until 7:30 and then drove home two members of the club on my own way home. Arrived home about 20 minutes ago.

Running on fumes. Hope to be in bed in the next 30 minutes or so.

Spoke to my mother, who was hospitalized on Saturday, this evening. She had been in emergency for several days, their not being a room to put her in. It made trying to call her and speak to her very difficult as the nurses were too busy to pass a phone to her. Tonight, with her actual room, I can call the patient line and speak to her directly.

She sounds much better than she did a few days ago. She tells me that she has lost 10 pounds of fluid just since Saturday. She is on a sodium-reduced diet now, to help her lose even more fluid, making everything taste kinda bland.

She thinks she'll be in the hospital several more days.

It was my birthday this past Saturday, the day she was admitted, actually. She is all worried and fretting that she hasn't made me my birthday cake. She has made birthday cakes for us kids since we were toddlers. Her chocolate cake is to die for, to be truthful. I keep telling her that her best gift to me would be to get better, to be home, so that we can dote on her for a change, and that my girlish figure doesn't need any more cake. But, yet, she frets.

She has had several tests to try to pinpoint what the problem is. But, let's face it: When trying to recline on a bed, her breathing would be shut off. She was taking on fluid. Had to take oxygen. Classic symptoms of congestive heart failure. I am no doctor, and I don't even play one on tv, but I'd be surprised if it were anything else. This, along with her diabetes, her angina, her other ailments, can be managed through medication and diet; but it sure does mean a lifestyle change.

Get well, Mommy.

The issue regarding fluid loss reminds me of a joke told about Marilyn Monroe. The story goes that when Arthur Miller was dating Marilyn Monroe, he took her home to meet his mother. MM at one point excused herself to go to the washroom. She didn't want his mother to hear her tinkling, so she ran the faucet while she was doing her business. The rest of the meeting with his mother went without incident.

A few days later, Arthur Miller asked his mother what she thought of Marilyn. "Well", she said, "she's a nice girl, but she pees like a horse!"

Time for bed.


Tuesday, February 26, 2008

137th Post - Stabbing!

There was a stabbing in my neighbourhood earlier this evening.

I was just getting around to washing my dishes around 7:15 (knowing it would take a while -- sigh!) when I looked out my kitchen window, which overlooks the school nearby. I could see a cop car drive around the school. I figured it was a routine patrol type of thing. A few minutes later, I heard fire trucks and an ambulance go past my home. I dashed to the front door and saw several cop cars dash past as well, down the street from me, where they parked in front of a home and helped a teenager who had been stabbed.

As I have been able to piece it together, an altercation began earlier this evening at the local school playground. Some kids from another part of town were here, and a fight broke out. A local teenager tried to intercede, when he was jumped and stabbed by one of these youth. The youths then left, and the police are looking for them. As I type these words, police are parked a short distance from my home, and more are in the playground of the school.

I am told that there is very little security at that school. Very stupid, given the fact that the body of one of the teachers at that school was found stuffed in the trunk of her car, my house was broken into (not in the same league as the murder of course), and now, the stabbing.

I remember being told that moving next to a school like this, an elementary school, would be a safe proposition. I am beginning to think otherwise.

What the hell is going on around here?


136th Post - Another of Bevboy's Dating Tips (Third in a Series)

After much demand, and with great fanfare, here is one of Bevboy's Dating Tips For Women Bitter That I Am Taken (BDTFWBTIAT)!

If he can offer you useful make up tips, then get rid of him

If you want to see more BDTFWBTIAT's, let me know.


Monday, February 25, 2008

135th Post - Gym Gyminee, Gym Giminee, Gym Gym Garoo!

Pronounced "Jaroo"!

As you may know from earlier posts, I have been having a helluva hard time getting myself to the gym on a regular basis. I still walk every day from where I park my car to where I work, and back again. But I don't do the spin classes on a regular basis any more. I used to average 2-3 a week!

I will be meeting with the manager of the local Nubody's after work tomorrow. I have told her a need a figurative kick in the pants to get going again. She chuckled, and said that costs extra. But she did say she might remit back some of the fees I have been paying lately and not using, and try to set me up with a personal fitness trainer to set me up with a program that will help me along better. I am certainly agreeable to that.

So, 4:45 can't come soon enough for me tomorrow afternoon!


134th Post - Missing Time

Sorry I haven't written the last few days, gentle readers. Hundreds of you have written to see if I am well, to see if I have decided to stop this blog, to see if I am even alive, having reached the ripe old age of 44.

No, no, and definitely no!

I have been busy, and a little under the weather, the last couple of days. Friday night, I went to bed very early, not feeling well. Saturday, my actual birthday, I slept in and took a nap in the afternoon before Patricia and I went out to dinner before going to the Blue Rodeo concert at the Metro Centre.

I have enjoyed the music of Blue Rodeo for about 20 years now. Their music is sui generis, with songs like "Rose Coloured Glasses" and "Diamond Mines" being played on Q104 and Country 101 at the same time. I don't hear them on the radio that much any more, but when I did, they were every where. I don't know if they were the bane of radio program directors' existence, or something they welcome with open arms, because you couldn't swing a dead cat (sorry, Newbie!) at a radio that wasn't playing a Blue Rodeo tune.

Sunday was the day I wasn't feeling well. Perhaps it was too much msg in my dinner. Maybe it was the moment catching up to me. Whatever it was, it meant that I slept pretty much the whole day away. I slept in that morning, and went downstairs where I feel asleep in my recliner for another couple of hours (with Newbie on my lap), before I went back upstairs to my bedroom, where I promptly fell asleep again until dinner time, when I got up and fed Newbie, ate something myself, and went back to bed. Yep, I am the life of the party.

Felt find today, but am experiencing one of my fun-filled headaches tonight. I left my magic pills at work, so the only cure for this one will be to go to bed and try to sleep it away.

They say that you spend something like one-third of your time in bed. I am working toward 40%, myself!

Had a good day at work today. At lunch time Patricia and I shuffled along the Halifax waterfront, remarking on the young 'uns today and how they have no respect for their elders. Dadgum it, what in tarnation is wrong with today's kids, anyway? When I was growing up, we only had 2 channels, and one of us kids would have to walk over to the tee vee and change that channel ourselves. Good old days.

Came home, realized that the Blue Menu soup from superstore tasted like ass and threw it out, before cooking some potatoes. Parked myself on my recliner, and Newbie parked himself on my lap three times tonight. As I type these words, with my gnarled fingers of course, Newbie is perched on the table next to me, sphinx-like, waiting for me to go to bed so he can pounce on me, injuring my balls in the process. Wonderful cat. Just because I paid the vet last year to fix him, he thinks he can fix me. Little bastard.

You watching The Sarah Connor Chronicles? I have only seen the first episode and been taping it ever since, with the intention of watching it. Also have a few episodes of Prison Break to slog
through, which is done for the season.

Haven't been to a Toastmasters meeting in 5 weeks. Miss it a lot. Last week, I had to work. Two weeks ago, we canceled because of the weather forecast. Three weeks ago was a bowling night experiment. Four weeks ago, Patricia was sick, so I drove her home. Five weeks ago, I went to the meeting. I hate missing meetings!

We are thisclose to booking some very interesting guest speakers for my Toastmasters club. We are the only club to invite people from the outside world to come to speak to us. It gives us all a chance to meet these people and to ask them questions. We have met the mayor, the chief of police, a bunch of radio people (natch!), a city councillor, some provincial and federal politicians, and others. It has worked out really well for us.

We have 3 more guests who have agreed to come. One of them is booked that I know of. I just have to touch base with my VP Education before I can announce who they all are. It should be pretty neat times for us in the next couple of months.

Their initials? P.D., J.C., and V.M.!

Looking forward to the official announcement, I remain...


Saturday, February 23, 2008

133rd post - Happy birthday to me

Didn't have a chance to write the last couple of nights.

Today is my birthday. I am 44 years old

Will tell you about my birthday tomorrow

Via BlackBerry Enterprise Server

Thursday, February 21, 2008

132nd post - Yikes!

Down 5 to 1


Via BlackBerry Enterprise Server

131st post - Proof I am at the Game

People are writing me saying that I am not at the game. That I am making this up

Here is some proof

Bevboy Via BlackBerry Enterprise Server

130th post - Hockey game blog

Here I am at the Mooseheads game. First period or third or whatever is over. Mooseheads down 2 nothing

Lots and lots of food at the operation paint my toes wrap party. Very full

More after next period

Via BlackBerry Enterprise Server

129th Post - Hockey Game

I have only been to a couple of hockey games in my life. I used to watch hockey all the time when I was a mite younger; but today, I am just not that interested.

But I am going to the Halifax Mooseheads game this evening at the Metro Centre. It is the official thank you to the volunteers of Operation Red Nose from this past December. It is a nice gesture and Patricia and I appreciate it.

Hope they serve food. We're starving.

I will be home fairly late tonight, so this is probably my only chance to blog today. Keep a stiff upper lip, my readers!


Wednesday, February 20, 2008

128th Post - No Toastmasters for me Tonight!

I was all set to attend my first TM meeting in 4 weeks tonight. Last week, we canceled because of a storm. Two weeks ago was our first ever bowling night. Three weeks ago, I had to drive Patricia home because she wasn't feeling well. Four weeks ago, I went to the meeting.

This morning I learned that I would have to put in some o.t. this evening, starting at 6:30. I finished up at about 8:40. Which meant I couldn't go to my meeting.

Before you cry for me, weep for me, wail for me, remember that I am a dedicated professional in my field, looked up to by, well, the odd person here and there. You remember in grade school, when they'd choose the baseball teams? The jocks would select players for their team? The dregs, the last people chosen? Kinda like me.

But I got to get home a little earlier, in case The Boy was skulking about on my property, casing the joint like he did last year.

And I got to see Patricia for the first time in a day and a half. She had a good time in Yarmouth, hitting six Frenchy's outlets. One huge garbage bag full of clothing and bedding, and another blue bag full of the same. She found a coat for me to wear in the fall and early Spring. I'll wear it for you sometime if you wish. Maybe, if you're really lucky, I won't wear anything else with it. You'd like that, wouldn't you? You!

Anyway, two hulking bags full of stuff, for less than $100. The bedding will mostly reside at the cottage, where all good bedding goes to die.

The Fifth Estate, starting up on CBC right now, is all about road rage. I am considered a pretty even-tempered dude. And a very good looking one at that. But I can't remember the number of times I have been cut off by Fatuous Artisans, Gold Digging Circus Stars, Mainly Friendly people, and wanted to climb up their tail pipe. I can get over that anger pretty quickly, but it is fun to talk about these incidents with a little bit of hindsight and an opportunity to unwind and think about what happened.

I have also seen pedestrians risk their lives by walking against the light, or diagonally, or completely oblivious to any motor traffic around them.

Let's be careful out there!

Have a good night.


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

127th Post - When The Bunny's Away, The Bear Will Play!

There is a member of my Toastmasters club who occasionally sends me an e-mail telling me that she can't make it to a given meeting. She usually "signs" her e-mails "SB".

This confuses me, because "SB" are the initials for the pet name I have for Patricia. Imagine: there is more than one "SB" in my life.

Do you want to know what our pet names are for each other? OK. I will tell you; but you must promise not to tell anyone.

Do you promise?

I trust you.

For years and years now, and we no longer remember why or how this began, I have been calling Patricia "Sugar Bunny". She calls me, the alpha male, the cock of the walk, the Imperial Grandpoobah, the Superior Potentate, of her life: "Sugar Bear".

(Yeah, like the character on the "Sugar Crisps" box. What is your point?)

When we are too tired to write out the full name, perhaps in an e-mail, or on a Christmas gift label, or something like that, we write something like "To: SB, Fr: SB". It is our language. Our sign of love. We know what it means. And now you do, too. Of course, I am still holding you to your promise that you not tell anyone else of this very intimate piece of information.


You can understand how confusing it can be, with my Annapolis Valley brain, for me to see an e-mail from someone who signs her e-mails "SB". I explained to this woman what the significance of those two letters is to Patricia and me. Yet, she persists in signing her e-mails to me with that difficult-to-parse series of letters.


Why does she sign her e-mails to me in that way? Is she attempting to confuse me, with my Annapolis Valley brain, into thinking that she is, in fact, Patricia? It is difficult to say. I need to do more research.

But this is not why I write this post.

I write this post to tell you that I may not be at work on Wednesday.

Patricia is out of town for the evening. You may dimly recall that she was supposed to be out of town last Tuesday night as well. Her sudden return to Halifax caught me with my pants down (literally, actually), as I suddenly -- even hastily -- canceled my plans for that evening. Plans that would not include her, if you know what I mean.

It is possible that I may be too tuckered out for work on Wednesday, following as it does a night of debauchery at the local Chapters bookstore, an evening spent surreptitiously scanning the book titles in the adult romance section, glancing left and right so as not to be seen, say, noticing titles like "Naughty Secretaries Preparing a Brief", or "Adult Editors Going Through the Slushpile". After that, it would be a decaf nightcap somewhere. Then, the 11pm news with the cutie on Global, and sleepy time bye-bye.


I am looking forward to this.

Please don't tell Patricia. She doesn't have to know.


126th Post - Bevboy's Dating Tips (Second in a Series)

At great demand from the readership of this blog, I present herewith: Another one of Bevboy's Dating Tips For Women Bitter That I Am Taken (BDTFWBTIAT)!

If he wants you to be like a Commodore's song, make sure it's, "Once, Twice, Three Times a Lady", and not, "Easy Like a Sunday Morning"!

If you want to see more BDTFWBTIAT's, let me know.


Monday, February 18, 2008

125th Post - What Should I Discuss This Evening?

I probably should jot down what I plan to write about each evening. A couple of subjects occurred to me during the day. One of those, "Hey! I really should blog about this!" subjects that I forget about five minutes later.

I just sent an e-mail to this blog that I wrote recently about a homeless person in Halifax. A guy and his dog. I'll intercept that message, edit it a bit, and post it here. Hold on a minute.

And... here it goes:

I drink coffee every morning at a coffee shop in front of which Aaron and his dog Thompson sit every day.

I have spoken with Aaron. He is an articulate, soft-spoken young man. I don't know what mistakes he has made in his life, but whatever they are, they are mitigated by his readily apparent love for his dog, Thompson. The love, the bond, between the two are so obvious that one would have to be blind not to see it.

Since the article in the paper on February 13, 2008, people have approached Aaron concerning employment opportunities. Aaron is willing to do most anything, even wash dishes, but not until he can find a place for himself and Thompson to live. To that end, people have been giving large cash donations to him to put toward rent on whatever place he ends up acquiring.

In speaking with Aaron this morning, he told me that Thompson got a clean bill of health on Saturday. Yes, Aaron takes his dog to the vet, and make sure that Thompson gets his shots.

I cannot help but respect someone who loves an animal that much. Would that we were all so kind to animals. The incident like what happened in Cape Breton a few weeks would never have transpired, and the world would be a better place.

Bevboy, who gave Aaron and Thompson a bag of dog food this morning.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

124th Post - When is Chocolate Sauce NOT Chocolate Sauce?

Before I answer the question posed by the subject heading, let me tell you about my day.

Went to bed around midnight last night, after watching the first part of the documentary film about Jack Johnson. Except for the further impugning of Tommy Burns' reputation, I liked it. The second part is on next week, I guess, and I'll probably catch that.

I do hope that the new book about Tommy Burns, which I'm gonna get for sure, also has some nice things to say about the poor sod.

I turned in at midnight, and slept in until 8:30 or so, when I got up, ate some cereal, and went downstairs to do some work. Unfortunately, I could not establish a remote desktop connection to my work computer from here, so I ended up having to drive into work for a couple of hours to do what I do best.

Left work around 1:30 and went to Patricia's. Despite having slept my Saturday away, and sleeping in this morning, I ended up taking another nap this afternoon. Upon waking up at 4:30, we decided to go out to dinner at a local beverage room. Actually, THE only local beverage room.

We ordered the ribeye steak. We decided to have dessert afterward: a cheesecake with... chocolate sauce.

Turns out that the chocolate sauce is stored right next to the barbecue sauce.

Guess which one the cook grabbed when he was preparing our dessert.


Patricia noticed the unusual taste before I did. I am used to eating unusual things, and thought that the sauce was a little off, but not so much that it would be worth while to send it back. Patricia did not agree and had it sent back. The server apologized and told the owner and her supervisor. The replacement dessert was fine.

As I paid for our dinners, the assistant manager asked if we preferred cheesecake with chocolate sauce, or barbecue sauce. I think they were glad that we were good natured about the mistake.

So, chocolate sauce is not chocolate sauce when it is served with a steak!


Saturday, February 16, 2008

123rd Post - What I'm Taping Tonight

Later on this evening, I'll be taping the first part of a two-part documentary on the life of Jackie Johnson. It was first run a few years ago. It is a Ken Burns film, meaning it will contain many comments by famous people who may not know what they are talking about.

Jackie Johnson is the first African American to become the Heavyweight Champion of Boxing. He suffered from terrible discrimination over the years, as most white boxers would not agree to fight African American boxers, thinking them, and pronouncing them, inferior. Finally, the current heavyweight champion agreed to fight Johnson. It was a Canadian named Noah Brusso, fighting under the name of Tommy Burns.

Johnson was named the champ when the fight was called in the 14th round. The smear campaign against Tommy Burns began almost immediately afterward, with people like Jack London (yes, the guy who wrote "Call of the Wild") saying that Burns was no good, that Johnson had toyed with him, etc.

Anyone who knows me will state with certainty that I am no sports fan. I just don't care to any degree. But the story of poor Tommy Burns, denigrated by critics and ignored by his country (only 4 people attended his funeral) has made me sensitive to continued attacks on this man's character.

The Ken Burns film about Jackie Johnson doesn't exactly say anything nice about Noah/Tommy. When he was interviewed on Canadian radio in connection with this film, Burns and the radio host agreed that Burns was no good, that Johnson had followed Burns around the world taunting him, demanding a fight. Not even the host could bother to do a few minutes of research to see that this fight was not a blow out. I usually support the CBC, and Michael Enright, but I was pretty sore at him after that interview.

While some of that what was in the interview and film is true, it is not true that Tommy Burns was a bum. Several years ago, I bought and read (and continue to re-read) a book on Tommy Burns. Burns still holds records to this day, and he only suffered one official knockout in his career (not the Johnson fight). I cannot recommend this book highly enough. And, while you're at it, why not read this article about him? And I see that there is another book about Tommy Burns coming out in a couple of months. If you look on youtube, you'll find some Tommy Burns footage there.

But for every balanced approach to Tommy Burns, where he is treated with some respect, there are other approaches that are much less so. An artist named Trevor von Eeden has been working on a large graphic novel about Jackie Johnson. I have no problem with this effort, of course, as long as the pages about Tommy Burns are truthful. But the sample pages I have seen, here and here, do not fill me with confidence.

Why do we persist in building up the reputation of one person by denigrating the reputation of another?


122nd Post - Where did the day go?

I went to bed earlier last night than I planned to. Patricia and I had gone out to dinner after work on Friday, and then bought groceries, and then gone home. I had missed the evening news, and therefore had missed the update on the Karissa Boudreau murder investigation. I see from the news this morning that her body has been released to her father, the non-custodial parent. Hmmm.

But I missed the late news last night because I fell asleep around 10:30. My cat woke me up early this morning. I know from experience that if I do not feed him when he wants to be fed, he will just torment me until he gets his way. I fed him, and he tormented me anyway. So, around 5:30 this morning, I closed my bedroom door with him on the other side, and me inside. He just proceeded to scratch at the door until I gave up on that and let him in again.

I still slept in until around 7:30. Went downtstairs around 8:15 and began my day by washing my dishes. I do not wash my dishes frequently enough, so I had lots of them to do. I began my laundry as well; 12 hours later, I still have a couple of loads to do. I lost time this afternoon because around 1:30 I conked out on my bed and slept the afternoon away.

I don't know how my body knows it, but it seems to know when the weekend is here. I may get a little tired during the week, but I don't get the desire to put my head down at my desk and have a nap every afternoon. However, come the weekend, and come my annual summer vacation, I literally can't get enough sleep some days. I can sleep for 10 hours, get up for a few hours, and then take a long nap in the afternoon. Real life of the party, aren't I?

Found out late yesterday afternoon that I have to work some overtime Sunday morning. I go on call in about 3.5 hours for 2 weeks. A little overtime is a nice way to celebrate the start of another on call period.

More in a bit.

Friday, February 15, 2008

121st Post - Short and Sweet

As Newbie continues to terrorize me, a short note to say that tomorrow I'll be pretty busy. I haven't done my laundry in two weeks, and my dishes are piled up in the sink in such a quantity that it will take me the better part of 90 minutes to wash them all.

A Bevboy's work is never done!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

120th Post - Crazy Cat

My cat is insane. He must be. There is no other explanation.

I feel like a father, which is funny, because I have never sired a child. Well, I don't think I have. I mean... well, never mind.

Anyway, my cat runs and jumps around like a mad whore, usually at night, and when I want to go to bed. When I first got him in '06, he would climb up my leg and perch himself on my shoulder, like he was a parrot. "Newbie want a cracker?", I'd say; and he would ignore me like that girl in the 8th grade did, back when I was also in the 8th grade, of course. He'd stay on my shoulder, obstinately, until he decided he'd rather do something else.

And I have to recognize that he looks up to me, figuratively and literally. For example, he used to vocalize whenever he defecated in his litter box. I think he got that habit from me, and I regret having influenced him unduly.

At night, when I want to eat dinner in front of the tv, Newbie jumps on my lap and curls up, staring at me with that come hither look of his. I keep telling him I'm not wired that way, and please don't make me do anything we might regret later, but he just doesn't listen.

Save me from my cat!


119th Post - Bevboy's Dating Tips

1. If, on a date, he asks you if his muu muu makes him look fat, dump him.

2. If, during your first date, he says something like, "[Your Name]? Isn't that usually a woman's name?", then dump him.

3. If, during your initial phone conversation, he says that meeting you will make him feel five feet tall, then stand him up.

If you want to see more of Bevboy's dating tips, let me know.

More to follow.


Wednesday, February 13, 2008

117th Post - Yet More Gerber Tributes

If you are a completist, you can read a few hundred online tributes to Steve Gerber. You'll see my blog amidst that huge list (it's alphabetically-arranged).

This man, his work, his death, have resonated with fandom in a way that I have seldom seen. When Jack Kirby died in 1994, the internet certainly existed, but I do not recall seeing these kinds of tributes to him then. Will Eisner died in 2005, and there were tributes aplenty then. But Eisner was 85 years old and died as a result of complications following heart surgery. Not exactly a surprise. But Gerber? Despite his illness, and his attitude toward it, his death remains a shock.

I guess, if I had to put my finger on it, Steve Gerber's passing is hitting those of us of a certain age so hard because so many of us read his work when he was in his prime, and we were at our most impressionable. We thought we, and he, would, could, and should, live forever. His crazy/insane Defenders work, his introspective Omega the Unknown, his satirical Howard the Duck, and his poignant Man Thing all resonated with us in a way that is difficult to convey to people who don't know what we're talking about.

Gerber's death reminds us that our heroes are fallible, are human, and prone to the same frailties, infirmities, and foibles that affect the rest of us. And we don't like that kind of reminder.


116th Post - Storm? What Storm?

Oh, the weather forecasts last night and this morning on the radio were dire. Snow. Freezing rain. Copious amounts of rain.

Patricia and I thought about taking the bus. But taking the bus is about as much fun as eating a dishrag, so we decided to drive in to work after all. Schools were canceled in Halifax today, making the drive to work easy and even enjoyable as thousands and thousands of parents ended up staying home with their adorable children.

The snow did start around 11am and continued until perhaps 1:30. It then switched over to freezing rain for a short time. By the time of my afternoon o.j. break, there was practically no precipitation. In walking back to the car at 4:30, there was perhaps a little bit of rain, but not much. The drive home was uneventful.

God, why do they cancel school at the drop of a snowflake, or even the potential of a drop of a snowflake? It creates vast inconvenience for people, although the greatly-reduced traffic does wonders for me, I have to admit.


Tuesday, February 12, 2008

115th Post - Change of Plans

Patricia was supposed to be out of town for a couple of days for work. Instead, because of a threatened storm, she and her colleague returned to the city this evening, a day and a half early. I barely had time to cancel the whores! I hate it when she doesn't give me advance notice! Phooey to her spontaneous activities!

Phooey, I say.


114th Post - Gerber Postscript

Tributes are pouring in across the internet, from people all over the world, praising the work and humanity of Steve Gerber.

I guess you could start with my humble, poorly-written tribute from Monday, and continue to nicer-looking ones on Gerber's blog, which has been hijacked (in a friendly way) by his long time bud Mark Evanier.

I still can't believe he is gone. When you grow up reading comics, featuring characters that do not age despite having been around for decades and decades, it is easy to succumb to the notion that the people chronicling the characters' adventures are similarly ageless, infallible, and impossible for mere mortals to aspire to. Instead, these are people 10, 15 years older than I am now, dying of diseases that, well, old people die of.

This is hitting me harder than it has a right to. Trying to understand why.

My thanks to "R W S" for his comment last night/this morning. I know who you are, "R W S"! I have known you since we were both lads, saplings, strumpets.

Say, everyone reading this: Who was your hero when you were growing up? I am not referring to a parent, or a guardian, or a teacher. I am referring to someone whose books you enjoyed, or whose music inspired you, or whose films you found particularly stirring. Do dish, my friends. Do dish.


Monday, February 11, 2008

113th Post - R.I.P. Steve Gerber

One of the heroes of my childhood died on Sunday.

You have probably never heard of him. His name was Steve Gerber, and as a boy, his comics stories thrilled me to no end. He is best known for his writing of Howard the Duck in the 1970's; but he also wrote the first KISS comic book in 1977. He wrote Man Thing, not to be confused with Swamp Thing, or the Heap, or any of the other swamp creatures that have infested comics over the years. He wrote the Defenders, and some Hulk stories, and some Spider-Man stories. More recently, he wrote Dr. Fate; he was working on the latest issue last week from his hospital bed.

Have you ever read any of his stories? HtD was probably my favourite, with Omega the Unknown a close second. A duck, anthropomorphically imbued with human characteristics, cigar smoking, and dating a woman named Bev(!) first appeared in the early 1970's. He eventually got his own comic a few years later. The early issues were wonderful satire, poking fun at martial arts movies in one issue; horror films the next; and focusing on things like poverty in the next (rent to own tv's; Howard's and Bev's being so broke that finding a snickers bar was the difference between eating that day, and not). The book began to take itself a little too seriously for my taste after those early issues, and Gerber's well-known run-in with Marvel Comics over ownership of the character drained much of the fun out of the book, and perhaps Gerber, himself.

Omega the Unknown was an alien who landed on earth and became involved with an earth boy named James Michael. Turns out that the boy's parents were robots, and it is possible that Omega was James' actual father. Ten issues of this book were published, and Omega didn't actually say a word until issue four. Readers were treated to Omega's observations on humanity and human foibles as he attempted to acclimate into society. At the same time, James Michael began attending a public school in a poor part of New York City. I say that perhaps they were father and son because I don't know. The book was canceled after 10 issues and some of the plot lines were dealt with by an inferior writer a couple of years later in The Defenders, another book Gerber had left.

I still remember passages in various issues, nearly 30 years after I read them. Still have most of the issues around the house here somewhere but haven't cracked them open in many a year. How that series was to end, with Gerber's original script, is a mystery to this day, although I just received word in the last few minutes via an e-mail list I am on that this mystery may yet be solved: A poster on that group claims to have a tape recording of Gerber discussing his ending to Omega, and I can't wait to learn what it is.

Gerber left comics for a time, but returned in recent years. I don't read comics anything like I used to. Work and spending time with my betrothed and digital cable and Toastmasters and the desire for sleep have sucked the vast majority of the time devoted to leisure reading from my schedule. This blog takes time, too. But I have never forgotten how special those comics were to me, and how much I had wanted to meet Steve Gerber.

The theme of being an alien to something, of trying to fit in to a world you never made (a HtD byline that never made sense to me, until it made sense to me, if you know what I mean), is a common one with Gerber, and one which resonated strongly with me as a lad. Around the time I was reading the early issues of Howard the Duck, and as Omega the Unknown really began to grab ahold of me and didn't let go, I began attending a school where, to be charitable, to put it mildly, I didn't exactly fit in. I do not like to dwell on that period of my life, as it is still upsetting to me to think about or to discuss. I'm getting a little worked up just typing these words to be honest. I'll just state that it was unpleasant for me in every way you could imagine, and in several in which you could not.

There is a Harlan Ellison short story collection in whose foreword he thanks the kids who tormented him when he was growing up. Thanked the boys who used to beat him up for being what he was. Those tykes drove Ellison into a fantasy world and to books which propelled his imagination, and which helped him become a writer on his own.

I guess I should compose a thank you note to some people in my school, too.

Anyway, it was the stories of Steve Gerber, and a few others, that helped me through that extremely trying time in my life. I continue to be grateful for my having read them, because without that release valve, who knows what might have happened to me? Seriously.

A few years ago, I misconstrued something Gerber wrote online, and reported that mis-information on a message board I frequented at the time, and which I have since quit. Gerber asked me to recant what I had written on the board and I did, and he thanked me. I never got the idea that he was angry with me for my error. Instead, I think he was trying to see how I had misunderstood him in the first place. It was almost as if he were disappointed for not having expressed himself better. I guess that's the sign of a true professional writer: Always wanting to write something better.

Gerber had a disease called pulmonary fibrosis, which turns your lungs into scar tissue, and which only gets worse. The only cure is a lung transplant, which never came. He had been a long-time smoker, and he had apparently deluded himself into thinking that smoking was not a big deal. It was, and it is.

I have never smoked in my life. Well, not quite. I took one puff on one cigarette at the age of 15. That is the only time. Ever. I can't and don't understand why anyone would smoke. I can understand why people continue to smoke (their body craves nicotine; they're addicted to the stuff), but not what compels people to smoke in the first place.

If the young Steve Gerber had not started to smoke, he would probably be alive today. And not just alive, but healthy, to boot.

If you care about someone who smokes. If you want to see that person live to become old and gray and a pensioner. If you want to be proud of that person beyond how proud of him or her you are now, then get him or her to stop smoking. You're doing that person a favour.

For what it is worth, from this small corner of the world, I wish to express my condolences to Steve Gerber's friends and family.


112th Post - The Daily News

Today's edition of the Daily News will be its last.

I have been reading the Daily News for many years, and receive the weekend issues. Or, rather, received.

Sorry to see it go. But I have to state that I hate it when a media organization, which prides itself and takes its journalistic integrity so seriously, backs away and retreats and turns chickenshit when confonted by its own foibles.

A case in point: Staff at the Daily News were informed of the paper's cancelation as of 10 this morning. Today's paper would be it.

Why not let their staff know up front there might be a problem? Why not give readers a heads up to try to build up readership? Why trot their editor-of-the-week and have him or her announce that the paper was taking another run at the Halifax Herald? After a while, we knew that these announcements were full of hot air.

The paper has not been a good one for quite some time, in my opinion. The first few pages would contain stories written by local reporters (the only few reporters they'd have). Then, they'd cede control to wire service stuff and, of course, the columnists. Page after page after page of people expressing opinions about things when they didn't know whereof they wrote. It was so easy to ignore 98% of those people's columns. And sports coverage, too. Don't care about sports much. And that didn't leave much left to read and enjoy and learn from.

Goodbye, Daily News!

More later.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

111th Post - Nothing in Particular

Well, today was a day where I did nothing. Let me tell you about it.

Slept in. Went to Patricia's after lunch. We had planned on going to see the Marilyn Monroe exhibit at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, but did not go in the end. So, instead, we watched the two most recent episodes of "Supernatural", and the pilot episode of "Eli Stone" (which is a classic show, and you should watch it). This evening, we got groceries. Then, I came back here and finalized a dvd I copied over from vhs while I was gone today. And, put another tape in the recorder to copy over to dvd. It will be ready by 3:45 or so Sunday morning.

We're supposed to get a major snowstorm on Sunday. Apparently, Halifax is gonna get about 10cm of the white stuff, along with wind and blowing snow. Good day to stay inside and do my laundry and dishes and take things easy.

This blog is really living up to its name, huh? World's most boring blog?

More on Sunday!


Friday, February 8, 2008

110th Post - Uncle Bev Update

As you know from a previous post, my uncle Bev, after whom I was named many years ago, died on Wednesday from the complications of a brain tumour. Horrible way to go, I'm sure.

He will be cremated, and his funeral will be on the 16th of February in New Brunswick.

I probably will not go to said funeral. It is a long drive to St. Stephen from Halifax. St. Stephen is right at the Maine border (Calais, to be exact). Probably 5 hours or more from here. The weather this time of year is an iffy situation at the best of times; we are scheduled for a major storm this Sunday, and who knows what might be in store for us in a week's time.

Despite all of the above, I feel I should attend his funeral. I liked Bev a lot, and people told us we looked close enough to be father and son, rather than Uncle and Nephew. (I'll post a pic of us together soon.) But I would like to remember Bev as he was, and not think about him having passed. I know that is naive, and perhaps even foolish. Not accepting the reality of someone's death is unusual to say the least. But accepting the death of someone I respected and loved so much is difficult for me, and is likely difficult for you, too. Coupled with the weather considerations, and I have little choice but to stay home next weekend and miss this funeral.

Great attitude I have, huh?

One little story about Bev. When I was born, he was unmarried and childless. My mother decided to name me after him for fear that he would never have children of his own. Shortly after I was born, he got married and had kids. The first one was a daughter. Named her Kelly.

Bev used to tell my mother, "Marion, that boy [your humble blogger] will grow up hating his name". I did not. I do not dislike the name I was given. I do not like to be called "Beverly", for reasons I will discuss in a future post; but being called "Bev" like he always was has never bothered me at all. For one thing, I could point to this cool guy and say I was named after him. For another, there are so few guys named Bev nowadays that having his moniker has afforded me an unusual degree of individuality. If you go into a crowded room and yell, "Bev!", you'll see several women and me raise our heads and say, "Yes?". That is kind of cool.

Getting back to my family for a moment: As sad as it sounds, I have family members, cousins and uncles mostly, whom I haven't seen in many years. My life is here, and their lives are there in another province. In the late 1950's, my maternal grand parents, with most of their kids in tow, up and moved to New Brunswick in search of work, while my mother and father remained in Nova Scotia, as they already had two kids and my father already had a job. After that, visits from the family in N.B. were periodic but infrequent. We'd see them occasionally; they'd come down and see us from time to time. There are cousins who if I saw them on the street, I'd keep going, not recognizing them. Of course, my cousin Bruce visited Halifax a few months ago, and we hooked up. And he e-mailed me just the other day. Really must tell him about this blog.

The internet has helped some of us keep in touch, and I am grateful for that type of interaction. Of course, I don't have all of their e-mail addy's. If I did, I'd tell them all about this blog and invite them to check it out.

Remind me to put that photo of Bev and me up. I think you'll like it.

Time for bed. Long day, up early on my day off. Carting my parents around is tiring.


109th Post - The Coast, Part Two

So, I read the article about the bridge suicides in this week's Coast while waiting for my mother to see her eye specialist.

I liked the article over all. I have to provide full disclosure now and state that I know someone whose brother leapt to his death off the MacDonald bridge a couple of years ago. My friend and his family are still trying to understand why he did this. They will probably never know.

Steve Snyder, the bridge CEO, repeatedly declined specific comment about the number of jumpers off the bridge. There is so much fear of "monkey see, monkey do", that discussing how many suicides there are off this bridge would inspire others to do the same. However, there is anecdotal evidence that suggests that bridge suicides are a fairly regular occurrence. Much of the time, when you hear on the radio that there is a problem on the bridge, especially the MacDonald bridge (which has a walk way), it is not the result of a car accident on the bridge, but someone attempting suicide.

I worked with someone at my previous job who as a young fella had a summer job painting the MacDonald bridge. He used to tell me about the jumpers who would plummet to their deaths while he and his co-workers just looked on in horror.

I don't get it. The bridge commissioner refuses to consider building so-called suicide barriers, the argument being that the people who could no longer jump off the bridge would seek to end their lives some other way. Yet, there is research to support the claim that erecting these barriers would prevent suicides. Suicide is many times an impulsive act; and if people cannot jump to their deaths as spectacularly as they do off the MacDonald bridge, then there is an excellent chance they would not bother to do it at all.

Please, everyone, read the article in this week's coast. If you don't live in Halifax, and cannot therefore obtain a printed copy, the article is up in its entirety on the website, which I included in my previous post.

More later.


108th Post - The Coast

Maybe, if you live in the Halifax area, you read The Coast, the free weekly newspaper that is published every Thursday. This has become a fine newspaper that contains more investigative journalism than you find in the regular daily papers by a wide margin.

This week's issue deals with a taboo subject seldom discussed: The number of suicides off one of Halifax's major bridges.

The piece is very good, but as one might expect with a free newspaper, they cut corners on things like proofreading and even good editing. It seems that they rely on the writers to do their own proofreading, and to a certain extent, their own editing, too. There are so many errors in punctuation that at times it is hard to follow the article.

I used to write an awful lot. Not professionally, but long, long letters to people. I remembered the rules of punctuation and grammar that were taught to me by various English teachers in grade school, and even in university, and applied them to these extensive communiques. Remember, I was mostly single during this period of my life and had plenty of time to compose these massive missives.

Oddly enough, studying a foreign language (German) helped me learn English grammar better, as the constructs are similar and more structured. I studied Computer Science in university; programming in any computer language is a precise thing as well. One must be clear and completely unambiguous in what you tell the computer to do, and how you tell the computer to do it, or the computer will go off and do something you don't expect, and do it inefficiently to boot.

This is all a preamble to say (well, write, actually) that while I appreciate and often enjoy the long investigative pieces in the Coast, that the writers they employ oftentimes ramble on and on, as if the freedom they have been granted to write long has gone to their head and they decide to fill the entire paper. A year or so ago, a local journalist named Stephen Kimber wrote an extraordinarily "detailed" (I'll be generous and call it leisurely paced) article about the problems and travails of the Halifax School Board (ultimately fired by the minister of education in December of '06). My god, that was a long article. After about 7 pages, I wondered why I was committing so much time to this crap. I had grown so tired of the squabbling amongst the board members that I wanted them gone, and so did the majority of people who heard about these people.

Of course, I am rambling myself. I still want to comment on the article in this week's Coast.

Which I will, in my next post.

Bevboy, making up for the posts he didn't make the last couple of days.

107th Post - Ketchup Time!

Sorry I haven't written much the last few days. I have been crazy busy.

Picked up my parents at the bus terminal Thursday evening. We went to dinner after that to the local Steak and Stein, where the nightly special was corned beef and cabbage. Only $9 for an extremely full plate of food, which once again I could not finish. There was not that much meat on the plate; only about the fabled "deck of cards" amount that is supposed to constitute a serving. But they load it up with potatoes, turnips, cabbage and carrots, and I defy anyone to eat the entire amount. I was pretty damned hungry as we sat down to our meals at around 7:10 last night. I ate more of what was on my plate than I have ever been able to put away. And yet, there was still a good third of it left when I pushed the plate away from me and began contemplating waddling back to my car.

My mother was up to visit her eye specialist again. She has been seeing her for a good 12 years now. And I have been the one to take her, virtually every time. I have lost track of the number of vacation days I have sacrificed to make sure that she and my father make any medical appointments in the city. My boss at my previous job was kind enough to allow me to use "family illness days", a provision of our contract allowing people to take their children or dependents to medical appointments, or to care for them for a day or so. The way Rod interpreted it, I would be able to use those days to help my parents even though they do not live with me. To be fair to him, the wording of the agreement is ambiguous enough to allow for that reasonable interpretation, and I was always grateful to him for that generous and liberal reading of our contract.

I have also been using my EDO's (earned days off) to see to my parents. I get every third Friday off. My mother is to see this doctor again in August, but it will not be an edo thing, as this procedure must be performed on a Monday or Tuesday. That will likely be a vacation day thing.

For some reason I kept forgetting the time of my mother's appointment this morning. I thought it was 8:50, so we left the house around 8:10, 8:15 to make it to the appointment in time. About 10 minutes into the trip, I remembered that it was supposed to be 9:50. We had left the better part of 2 hours early! I asked my mother why she hadn't reminded me of the time, and she said she thought it a mite unusual that we were leaving so early, but thought I knew what I was doing. We ended up killing time at a local Wal-Mart's McDonald's, where we drank coffee and ate muffins until shortly after 9. We still arrived in plenty of time.

And we ended up staying there for hours. The good doctor was not particularly busy today, yet patients were backed up. We didn't get in to see the actual doctor until 11:20 or so.

After the appointment, as we were pressed for time, we ate sandwiches in my car before driving my parents to a used clothing store to kill 15 minutes. From there, it was to the bus station, where I saw them off around 1:10. Ran a couple of errands, visited Patricia for a moment or three, and came back to the house, where I collapsed on my bed for a couple of hours. I'd likely still be asleep if not for my cat's insistence that I get up. It is fine for Newbie to sleep all day long, but he doesn't appreciate his primary care giver's own indolence.

More later.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

106th post- A funeral

My uncle bev died earlier this evening. I will be attending his funeral in the next few days

Also earlier this evening I attended our clubs first annual bowling party. Lots of fun and I didn't stink up the joint as much as I thought I would

More tomorrow

Via BlackBerry Enterprise Server

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

105th Post - Simon and Garfunkle-like

Last evening, Patricia and I attended "Art and Paul: The Show They Never Gave". They are a Simon and Garfunkle tribute band, and they were amazing. The guy who portrayed Art Garfunkle sings like an angel. We had promised each other we would leave during the intermission if we were bored, but that proved not to be necessary.

There was a storm this afternoon; for all I know it is still raging outside. We got stuck in traffic on the way home. Being Shrove Tuesday, and since we were hungry, we decided to pull into a church and attend a pancake supper, which was most enjoyable. By the time we finished, traffic had died down and we were able to zip on home.

Our Toastmasters meeting is canceled tomorrow night in favour of a bowling party at a local mall. We have never done anything like this; I just hope that lots of club members decide to give it a whirl.

My father just called a few minutes ago. My uncle Bev, stricken with brain cancer which has spread to other parts of his body, is not expected to make it through the night. I last spoke with him a couple of weeks ago, and I couldn't reconcile the voice of the man on the other end of the phone with the voice of the man I remember so well from when I was growing up to the last time I saw him a couple of years ago. My parents saw him recently, and reported that he did not look well.

I hope that he recovers sufficiently to fight another day. But right now, it doesn't look good.

Don't really feel much like writing tonight.


Monday, February 4, 2008

104th Post - Burp! Belch!

Patricia and I just went out to dinner, for the third time, to the Mongolie Grill on Granville Street in Halifax. If you haven't been, go. Just go. Drop what you're doing and fly to Halifax if you're out of town, and go. If you are having dinner with someone special, excuse yourself and go to the Mongolie Grill on Granville Street (even if you are at another restaurant). Your dinner partner will understand once you inform that person that Bevboy insists you go to the Mongolie Grill on Granville Street in Halifax.

In about an hour, we're heading over to Neptune Theatre (up the hill, actually) to attend a performance of "Art and Paul: The Show They Never Gave". They are a Simon and Garfunkle tribute band. They performed live on CJCH (where else?) last week, and Deb Smith gave away tickets to the performance this evening. I was lucky enough to win tix on Friday morning. When she picked up and I introduced myself, Deb said, "I know you'd call!".

Am I that predictable? Sheesh!

Worked all day, to get Patricia money to buy her things. Also, paid a bill last week for repair work done to the cottage in the fall. Man, keeping 3 residences is expensive! It will soon be two residences. Soon, my precious. Soon.

Taping "Prison Break" tonight. That is the show also known as "The Fox Improv Hour" as I wrote before. This show is writer's strike proof, because they're making it up as they go along. Or, maybe, they're doing what the soap operas are doing, and that is employing whoever is walking past the studio window, or whoever delivers coffee to the studio on a given Monday morning, to write "scripts". These "scripts" are nonsensical haiku, a free form version of slam poetry where nothing makes any sense whatsoever, and the reset button gets pushed at the hour long mark and the actors return to their corners, bewildered, wondering what they just said and did; and the editors have to somehow cobble together an episode out of this mess, week after painful week. It is a train wreck, and I have to watch it every week.

What show do you watch, even though it sucks, just because you have to see what the hell they're going to do next?

Should head out soon. The boys are waiting to sing "The Sounds of Silence".


Sunday, February 3, 2008

103rd post - Super Bowl Anti Party

I have nothing to say about the super bowl. I can't name the teams. I just don't give a darn

Spent the afternoon with Patricia. We made a fish chowder and watched episodes of The Shield into the evening. Just drove her home and it is time for bed.

Have you checked out the missing persons websites I pointed out to you last night? Please do so

More on Monday sometime

Via BlackBerry Enterprise Server

Saturday, February 2, 2008

102nd Post - Lost and True Crime

This will be a fairly short post as I have done little today to merit writing much.

I did manage to find a copy of Lost Season 2, Disc 4 this morning. I went to the other Rogers store that was closing, the one in Clayton Park. I remembered they had a near-complete copy of it there on Thursday night. The guy at the Quinpool Road store called on my behalf Friday evening, and was informed that they didn't have a copy. I don't trust the staff at the Clayton Park store. They told me up and down that The Shield, season one, only consists of 3 discs, but I did some research on Friday and know for a fact that it has four.

So, I went there this morning and found the disc I wanted within about 30 seconds.

I hope that the discs I bought, all play. I have been having a problem with disc one of season one of The Shield. The picture pixelizes on me and even freezes up from time to time. I have been trying to fix it with glass cleaner and even some hot water, but to no avail. It is annoying that a technology that is designed to make something play the 1000th time just as well as the first, is so prone to things like scratches and smudges.

Do any of the millions of you reading these words know of a sure fire way to fix a dvd that doesn't play?

I copied over a very interesting show from vhs to dvd this evening. On March 19, 1996, on ASN, they ran an edition of the Hotline (normally a radio show, but it was simulcast on television back then) that is all about unsolved murders. I haven't seen it in several years. I was dumb enough to record it on an 8 hour tape, which is a fragile type tape to use, but I copied it off this evening without incident. On the same tape is a 2 hour special about the great Irish famine, and I'm dubbing that now.

Anyway, the Hotline show is about unsolved murders from the Atlantic Canada region, but mostly about ones from the Halifax area. Some of the murders go back to the 1950's. One lady called in and talked about that murder, and the victim, claiming to have known him and why he was murdered. Pretty unnerving stuff, and now I have a permanent copy of it on dvd to watch whenever I want to.

I have long been interested in unsolved murders and missing persons cases. Shortly after I moved to Halifax in 1988, I went to a flea market in Dartmouth at Pennhorn Mall. I was there for a little while and decided to leave. On my way out, just as I was approaching the exit, there was a vendor selling used books. On a whim, in a fit of pique, I looked at the books for just a moment and saw a book called "Disappearances" by a guy named Derrick Murdoch, about Canadians who had simply vanished. The book was a mere 50 cents, so I was happy to buy it and to read it.

That book scared the living hell out of me. I had just moved to the city a couple of months before. I knew very few people here. I was as single as single can be. I had a one room apartment in a run down part of Dartmouth, and I would read that book at night before going to bed. How many hours of sleep I lost as a result of reading that book, I can no longer recall. I just know that the author did a great job of writing that book, and it is one of the very few true crime books I kept recently. It is still on my bedroom floor and I don't want to part with it ever.

Today, of course, there are numerous websites that deal with missing persons cases. I suppose the most well known is the Doe Network, but the one I find most interesting, because it deals with cases going back to the early part of the 20th century, is the Charley Project. I could tell you why it's called that, but I'd prefer it if you checked out the site and found out for yourself. I have been reading a few cases per day, during my lunch hour, on my BlackBerry while waiting for Patricia for somehing, or at night before I go to bed. Wonderful bed time reading. Just wonderful.

There is one case I read about recently that I can't get out of my mind. It is listed in Charley, and involves a case of 5 missing children who disappeared (or did they?) in 1945. This case has its own website where you can read about it and download various documents related to the case. Whoever runs it cases passionately about this cold, cold case, and if you can read about it without a chill going up and down your spine, then you must have had some bad stuff happen in your life.

The guy is coming here tomorrow to look at my books. I guess I'll call it a night and get up bright and early.

Have a good one.

Enjoy your Superbowl party. I will do something else.


Friday, February 1, 2008

101st post - Videos

Haven't had a chance to post since the big x0part post on Thursday even though they were mostly composed on Wednesday

Not much to report. After work on Thursday Patricia and I went to a video store that is closing. Things getting picked over to say the least bit I did pick up some things at half price

Got all but one disc of lost season 2. Does anybody know where I can get the missing disc (4)? I would love to have it

Also got a disc of season 5 of CSI it contains the episode directed by Tarantino. I mostly am not a fan of the show. Procedurals run the risk of focusing on the crime of the week at the expense of any kind of character development. I am less interested in the crime of the week than I am in the people trying to solve that crime and what motivates them to seek a resolution to whatever they are investigating

The best procedurals (like Ed McBain's 87th precinct novels) do both. They have an absorbing mystery but also show the investigator's private lives. It makes the characters more well rounded and therefore makes for a much more satisfying reading experience

CSI shows little of the characters private lives. Just so many scenes in the lab that seem to go on forever. Boring for me but millions love the show and its spin offs. I am clearly in the minority here

But that tarantino one is a keeper.

Newbie on my lap tonight. That is why the blackberry again

Will write more tomorrow

Via BlackBerry Enterprise Server