Thursday, February 23, 2006

Curling rocks!

Ok, that was a really bad pun. But I'm serious about the fact that curling is really fun to watch. I still don't quite know the rules and lingo but the strategy, tactics and technique of it all are great to watch. I spent most of the time watching the womens matches but I did catch some of the mens. The US team got the Bronze while the US women just suffered from some very bad luck and some incredibly amazing shots on the last stone by some of the teams. The womens gold medal match was a real barn burner. It went to the very last stone of "overtime" before the decision was set.

Curling has some of the elements of bowling, pool, chess and thermodynamics. It's a thinking mans game. All in all, I hope that it gets a boost in popularity from these games.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Insomnia, kinda

Well, I can't sleep but it's not because I can't get to sleep. It's more because I don't want to go to sleep. Not yet anyway. So what to do 'till I do want to sleep? Let's randomly ramble inane babbling on the blog. Why not.

I watched a strange movie today. It was Purple Butterfly and was mostly a Chinese movie. I say mostly because there were some Japanese elements to it and, frankly, I couldn't figure out what was what. I'm sure the movie had a plot but I couldn't find it. The fact that it was a little over 2 hours with maybe 10 minutes of total dialog didn't help, either. It's wasn't as bizarre as the Japanese movie A Snake of June I watched a few years ago but then I don't think much of anything could be. The one saving grace of Purple Butterfly was that it stared Ziyi Zhang. It was funny , this, because later in the day TBS was showing Rush Hour and Rush Hour 2 back-to-back. She's in the latter as the bad girl. The sequel also stars Roselyn Sanchez, who is currently on the TV show Without a Trace, but I'll get to her in a moment. Back to Miss Ziyi. I'm watching her in these two very different roles and remembering her from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Then what do you know? Even later on the James Bond movie Tomorrow Never Dies comes on. Co-staring with Pierce Brosnan in this tale is Michelle Yeoh. She also stared with Jackie Chan in Supercop. So now I'm looking at the connections and seeing how Ziyi and Yeoh and Chan are all crossing each other. Which, of course, brings me to the point of this. I have previously stated somewhere (I thought on this blog but I can't find it) how I am in love with Michelle Yeoh. I have decided that I am also equally in love with Ziyi Zhang. And maybe just a hair behind them is Roselyn Sanchez. Side note: Michelle is only three months older than I am but Zhang is, like, 17 years younger. Everyone knows I have a thing for Asian women but it seems that any woman with an accent pegs my meter. While musing over this a stray thought wandered into my head. "Why aren't one of these women my wife?" The answer: because they are international film superstars and I am a crippled, unemployed, slightly fat, semi-unattractive old man who's pretty much a nobody outside of my immediate family. And don't ask some of them to hard about it either. This all leads to the end conclusion that I am really of little use to the Universe. Only to my son, and maybe my mother, do I mean anything. Not that the rest of my family doesn't care about me. They just don't have any use for me. Now I'm all sunken in morose thoughts. What can I do that would bring me back to a contributing member of society? My health is free-falling of late. I am not quite unable to walk, sit or even lie down without great pain. I have another doctors appointment on Tuesday, god-help-us. I'm getting so sick and tired of seeing doctors. And really sick and tired of being sick and tired. But just this weekend I realized that my situation/condition is worse than I'd ever imagined. See, one of my assets is my intellect and thinking ability. I have always had a mind that could grasp some of the most difficult concepts the human race has known as well as things very esoteric. From calculus to theoretical and practical physics to languages (both spoken and computer programming related) to cultural and social mores. I can get my head around anything. That is until recently. The last decade plus has eroded my mind with pain and chemicals and life to the point where I can't even figure out how to survive in this world. I have become completely dependent on the help and generosity of my family, mostly my mother. Without that I would not have any place to live. I would not have custody of my son. I would not even have cloths to wear or a car to drive. If I sold everything I could possibly sell I would still not have enough funds to keep me afloat in this world. The infuriating thing is that if my mind were clear or, ideally, if I were healthy, I could rule the world. Ok, not rule the world, but I would be kicking @$$ and taking names. I'd have a better than decent life and be able to provide for my son and my mother, and even help the siblings. But I'm stuck in the mud and don't even have any idea on how to try to get out. My friend, the E-man, is a few years younger than I am. He's also got some medical issues. His are, on the grand scale, more sever than mine. Yes he's making it through life and forging ahead to do something that he really wants to and likes to do. You know what the difference between he and I is? He's got a loving and wonderful wife. He's not along in the world. And so we come full circle to meet again back at the question that started this all. "Why isn't anyone my wife?" I need someone to help me through life. Just ask anyone who knows me, I should not be out in the world unchaperoned. But the things for which I need help are the very things that will keep me from finding that someone. I'm not totally bereft of value to a spouse. I have more love than anyone could ever want; I can still cook; I still have enough brain cells to aid anyone in their journey through life. I'm also very huggable. But no one is going to ever see this because the rest of my life and my situation is in the way.

I'm fucked and there's no way out.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Tears fall like rain

Maybe it's just the stress and uncertainty and depression. Maybe it's just the time of year*. Maybe it's the meds. Or maybe I'm just losing my mind.

I have been a lot more teary than usual. Picture it; a 5'10" 265lb man with a bushy bears and unruly hair crying. Some movies that would normally just bring a lump in my throat now start some serious gushers. The Last Samurai, Field of Dreams, 50% of what's on TCM... I was balling like a baby today at the end of Yankee Doodle Dandy. And there's no way I'll ever be watching Glory again. Ever.

But the incident today got me thinking. This was not the kind of movie I should be crying after. Then it struck me that for the longest time I have had something bring me to tears nearly every day. It's not like fits of uncontrollable crying, just serious sobbing. It'll happen out of the blue for no reason. Or sometimes when a movie or TV show or song hits some unknown, unseen, unheard switch in my head. Then the waterworks just break right out.

It all feels like everything is slowly sliding away. If it weren't for my son keeping me grounded I don't know where I'd be. Or even if I'd be. But the pull seems to be getting stronger and stronger. It seems to be part of the reason I'm crying so much.

This morning when I woke up I was in so much pain. It was as much pain as I normally go to bed with. A decent nights sleep will make the pain go down to a level where I am fairly functional in the morning. Usually. But not today.

$DEITY I hope that tomorrow morning is better. And I hope that I can make it through the day without the dam bursting.

*My father passed away on Feb 2nd, 2000 so this month is always difficult for me.

Olympics

I'm sitting here right now writing this instead of writing the article I'm supposed to be writing. You could say I'm taking a break. You could say it, but it wouldn't be true. I'm just shaming.

I have the Olympics on TV and they are showing mens Curling. Who created this sport? Who was the first person to say, "Hey! Let's slide rocks across some ice and use brooms to make the go faster. We'll see who can get his rocks closest to this spot on the ice." Whoever it was gave us Curling. Now after watching the womens team a couple of times and now the mens team, I'm kinda liking Curling. The other night the US women were playing the Japanese women and the match was really good. The US girls jumped out to a 2-0 lead but the girls from Japan came back to take a 5-4 lead into the last "End" (which is what they call innings in Curling). The US girls then had a set of really great runs and tied it up forcing a playoff. The playoff end was a back and forth thing with the US girls having the edge. But the Japanese girls had the last shot. And what a shot it was. The girl did an incredible job on the last stone to knock out girls out and score the win.

I think it might be fun to try Curling, if I were physically able. No, strike that. It has to be done in a cold environment; ice and all, you know. I don't do ice. Even if I were the healthiest man alive. If yo could do Curling on the beach in the Bahamas...

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Take this to the bank!

Damn! I just read the greatest quote ever quoted. It's one that fits more today than any other time in history, I feel. Read it, then read it again. And then read it a third time. Remember it next time "they" poke their head up.

"[The] idea that whenever something evil happens someone particular can be blamed and punished for it, in life and in politics, is hopeless."
     -- Hayao Miyazaki

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

Dr. Sanity: SHAME, GUILT, THE MUSLIM PSYCHE, AND THE DANISH CARTOONS

Dr. Sanity: SHAME, GUILT, THE MUSLIM PSYCHE, AND THE DANISH CARTOONS

It's sad to see all this hate and anger being leveled at the Islamic religion. Hundreds of millions of Muslims go about their lives living and loving and caring just the same way that you do. But because a very noticeable and violent micro-fraction of the populace run around spewing hate and rage you are ready to vaporize a goodly portion of the planet. The problems we are facing in this world are all based on social and informational restrictions. Religion is only a straw man; a pseudo-facade that gives both the insider and the outsider the illusion of "us vs them."

The Islamic Fundamentalists (who are the furthest from promoting fundamental Islam) are analogous to the neo-Nazi/paramilitary/survivalists in the US. Do they represent the ideas and goals and wishes of the entire nation? Of course not! The only reason they haven't been as much of a terror on this world as the former is due to social and informational limitations. If every Muslim had the education and free access to information that the US does, and (admittedly) a slight change in their society, they would know the evil ones for who they are and not be pulled into the hate and violence.

That's not to say the Christian world isn't without blame. The US has done a really great job of presenting itself as an evil entity to the rest of the world. Couldn't have anywhere near as much killing and violence without that added incentive. No one is blameless and no one is "right" in this mess. It's unfortunate that everyone thinks they are right and without blame.

Sometimes I wish I could move to another planet.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

We Won!

21-10

One for the thumb!

Hinze Ward is MVP.

The Bus calls it a career.

The Steelers are Super Bowl XL Champions!

Damn, would dad be happy. One for you, coach.

What a Super day

As I start this post there's 2:41:45 to go until kickoff. Go Steelers.

My son dropped by earlier to give me something he picked up at the Chocolate festival that's happened locally. It was a Steelers Pillow. He's the greatest.

We're going to a local sports bar to watch the game. Been going there for a few years but this year with the playoffs it's been wonderful. You should have seen the celebration after the Indy game. Screaming & hugging & and jumping all over. It was glorious.

4:32:56

The whole family usually goes. My mom and two brothers plus my sister and her two daughters (known as 'the girls'). When I have my son we go, too. The kids play pool or video games (though the owner took almost all the video games out to make another dart area). I'm bringing my son today, by prior arrangement with his mother, of course. I don't know how long we'll stay, though. I'm hoping to make it to halftime. Then I'll take my mother home and we'll go home. It's a school night so we can't stay for the whole game. Why couldn't they have the game at a decent hour.

My sister isn't coming. She didn't/wouldn't give a reason but it doesn't matter. This is why we might be leaving early. My son isn't quite into football yet. To be honest, I wasn't a fan until I was 13 and a freshman in high school.

4:26:49

They are calling this Super Bowl Extra Large because it's roman numerals are XL. Not many people now a days can read roman numerals. The movie industry used to use them for the dates a movie had but now they just use the plain old Arabic numbers. Heh, with all the anti-Muslim feelings these days I wonder what people would think if they knew we got our number system from "those people." I can still do roman numerals a bit. I have to count them to do it but I can still do it. For example, I was born in the year MCMLXII and my son was born in MCMXCVI. This year is MMVI. What a trip.

I wish my dad were here. He'd love to see the Black 'n' Gold in another Super Bowl. But then I'm sure he's watching from wherever he is. My parents are Catholic so I'm positive he's in Heaven. My religious beliefs are a little more mercurial. No, that's not quite right. Nebulous is a better word. The old "Spiritual but not religious" option that's in all the online dating sites. But why am I talking about religion.

4:22:29

I'm not as excited as I should be. I wonder why? Maybe because the girls won't be there so my son won't have anyone to play with. Maybe because I won't be able to stay for the whole game. Maybe because none of this matters because I'm in so much pain I can barely see. It just keeps getting worse every day. By fractions, but enough that it's notable. We're going to appeal the decision of my HMO to decline coverage for me to have a motorized chair/scooter. But it's extremely unlikely that it'll get overturned. This means we'll have to pay out-of-pocket for one. The cheapest one from The Scooter Store is $999. It's not ideal but it would work ok. But where am I going to get $9 let alone $999.

4:16:33

I guess I better start getting ready. I'll need to go pick up my son around 4pm so we can get to the game in time. It'll be my first trip to the latest abode his mother is in. Wonder how long she'll be in this one.

Ok, I'm off to shower and get dressed. I'll try and post the update to everything I said I would maybe after the game. Maybe.

False Start

It's late. I should be in bed.

But I'm not. I'm here clickity-clackitying away doing a whole lot of nothing. There's actual stuff I could be doing. I could be putting together the Sakura Ichimon web site like I said I would 4 months ago. Or I could be knuckling down and learning to program again. In fact it's so late that I can't finish this entry. I'll try for it tomorrow (well, today in about 9 or 10 hours). I'll need to get at it fairly early, though. The Super Bowl will be on and I have to root my Steelers on to victory!

17hrs 03min 30sec to go. WhooHoo!!!

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Six years and counting

Today is the 6th anniversary of the passing of my father. You know, I don't think I'll ever really "get over" it. I don't think I want to.