Sunday, July 31, 2005

Tie-dyed spirit

Christine found a tie-dyed shirt for me at the Pike Place Market. (Nice 3-D Tour here, but takes a minute to load.)

I don't know that tie-dyed is me as much as it once was--corporate being that I am these days--but she thought it fit my spirit. Since it's Sunday, I slipped it on this morning. Doesn't make me feel lost in the '60s, but it does make me feel relaxed and laid back.

Touch of Gray
With the sandals I wear on weekends and the gray on my chin, I guess I look ready to trail a Dead tour. Not a bad deal for Sunday. Gotta go by Starbucks and get a cup of chai to complete the ensemble.

0% passive sentences on the Flesch-Kincaid scale. Victory again!

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Type 'o Blog

In her presentation on blogs at Web Design World in Seattle Molly E. Holzschlag discussed mixing professional and personal blogging, an interesting discussion.

I've always considered both my Opera Journal and now this blogspot an eclectic blog. Sometimes I'm serious, sometimes whimsical, sometimes contemplative -- isn't everyone? (OK, not everyone, but I'm talking here about people leading examined lives.)

Tales from the Dark Side
At the height of publishing horror fiction, people used to ask Christine what I was like. "Is he really dark?"

No, sometimes I'm surprised by how upbeat people think I am, although often not laugh-out-loud funny because people tend to get my jokes later, like when they see the movie I was referencing on HBO. I guess quips can just be a riddle wrapped in a mystery.

Life's not all bad, and it's not all good. I once had a lady at a book signing tell me she couldn't buy a copy of one of my young adult novels for her grandkids unless she knew it had a happy ending. Sorry, lady, no one can always promise that.

Life has many textures. So do my moods, so maybe mine is a textured blog. :-)

0% passive sentences - victory.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Stupid Things I Could Do Vol. 1

While I was kicking alongside the streetcar track on Alaskan Way toward our hotel one afternoon in Seattle, I had a flash of a stupid way I could get myself killed ...

Heading into the lobby - I reach the doorway at the same moment as a graying man a few years older than me in a loose-fitting casual shirt, dress slacks and loafers with a high shine.

We reach for the door at the same moment, words are exchanged, we both get a little red in the face and end the altercation with angry looks.

Later that day...
I'm lounging in my room watching local television news, since that's about all that's different from back-home television. There's a knock at the door. Thinking it's the maid asking if she can clean the room, I answer without checking the peep hole.

Instead, I'm greeted by a couple of guys in sunglasses and nice casual wear--not tee shirts with Jake the stick man from Life is Good, if you know what I mean.

They want to take me on a tour of Elliott Bay, capped off by a view of what's under the waves.

You just never know who you're talking to. Just pays to be nice when those little altercations occur, doesn't it.

Just a flash of imagination. Didn't really happen in case the fact that I'm typing this doesn't make that clear. :-)

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Seattle time

I get a breezy vibe from Seattle. It sweeps in off Eliott Bay as I walk along the waterfront and follows me up through the shaded cobblestones of Pioneer Square. After a while I wind up thinking I was born in the wrong place.

I spent a week with some good people in Seattle back in ’98 and it didn’t take me long to sink back into loving the culture. Christine got me a Life is Good tee-shirt before our trip last week, one featuring the stick man named Jake grilling burgers--she said they should probably be veggie burgers to fit Seattle’s true spirit. It helped me assimilate into Emerald City culture, I suppose. I was still trying to get oriented when motorists were stopping to ask me how to get to Smith Tower.

Sight seeing
We hit Pike Street Market our first afternoon off the plane and fit in some sushi, Tully's Coffee, an Indigo Girls
concert at Lake Union and a couple of tours of Eliott Bay Book Company.

It was a cool week and I managed to choose one once again without rain.

Monday, July 25, 2005

What's on the Pod?

I just started listening to The Traveler by John Twelve Hawks. It's an interesting science fiction/fantasy.

Here's the down side. The abridged version is narrated by Bill of Kill Bill himself David Carradine.

I usually get the unabridged, and it's narrated by Scott Brick. Only about a month ago I listened to his unabridged reading of Company Man by Joseph Finder. Great book but long. Brick's a great reader but his voice keeps snapping me back to the full immersion of his Company Man reading, and The Traveler is about 12 hours too!

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Does Anyone Remember "Parts the Clonus Horror"?

Just saw The Island. Good action movie with some bioethical undertones. Bioethical undertones, simplistic though they may be, are pleasantly unexpected in summer fare. About half the movie is solid science fiction, and about half of it is souped-up action a la director Michael Bay’s Con Air” and The Rock

As I watched, I couldn’t help recalling an old low-budget flick called Parts: The Clonus Horror. It was, I believe, made by the same company who gave us the Giant Spider Invasion featuring Perry Mason’s assistant fighting eight-legged special effects in mink coats.

Parts is probably better known because of its treatment on “Mystery Science Theater 3000.” It doesn’t include souped-up action a la Con Air and The Rock.

For example, Ewan McGregor makes a getaway from his pursuers on a police motor cycle with vertical takeoff and hover capabilities. The hero of Parts--this guy who was always on "Adam-12" flees pursuers on a bicycle with a banana seat. Both do escape with fellow clone captives who happen to be pretty, vivacious blondes, a key ingredient for big and low-budget films, I guess.

Budget differences aside, premise wise the stories are the same. Parts and The Island are both about clones being maintained in a remote environment unaware they’re on hand to provide spare parts for the wealthy who have outside lives but unpleasant things like bad liver conditions. Peter Graves is a politician who has a clone counterpart in Parts. There’s an allusion to a presidential clone in Island.

As far as I know The Island is not an official remake, and it goes off in far more exciting, big-budget action directions such as Con Air and The Rock, but I guess you just can’t really escape sequels and remakes in July.

My Site

I have to clean up the code on my personal site. I did a quick redesign a few weeks ago because it had been a sprawling mass of tables with a few wandering links for too long. I’m generally pleased with the new look, but to get the rollovers I wanted created a bloody Javascript mess. I’m going to migrate that to CSS. I keep putting off CSS for my own site for a while mainly because of the learning curve.

Web Design World’s CSS evangelism plus the introduction to the Zen Garden provided a nice kick in the pants to get me going.

I’m kind of pleased with the convergence of metaphors for my site, at least. I mixed in a computer keyboard and a fountain pen along with a Courier-like font suggesting old typewriters. The rollover – just a touch of a wind effect, in the back of my mind, represents text on paper swept by one of those old typewriter erasers. Anyone remember those round white ones with the brush trailing behind it. Yes, I’m a hundred years old now.

0% passive sentences. Yay!

Saturday, July 23, 2005

New Digs

I've been keeping my web journal at Opera for a while now, but it seems to be time to move to a new corner of the web and flex a little. I'm just back from Web Design World 2005 in Seattle and I'm propelled by that burst of energy that comes after a cool week of learning and lasts until the first major lava flow back in the real world.

That will probably happen sometime Monday morning, so for now, I'm logging in to new things and ready to post this brief message just as soon as I paste it into Word and check for red squiggles.

Good. None. Unfortunately 33% of the sentences are passive. Got to keep working on that.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...