Thursday, February 28, 2008

Beirut - Postcards from Italy

I am in love. Maybe it's the epicness. I love harmonies and layers. And horns sail you wistfully through to the next verse. This beautiful mingling of Latin sounding beats and indie rock vocals is haunting. This piece of music was written when a band mate picked up a discarded old Italian postcard. And found it's old image and Italian text inspiring.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Molly Nix Chapter 1: The Insomniac, Part 2

Hey, little late, but here's the second instalment of my Molly Nix pulp serial, once again in both text and audible format thanks to the lovely reading voice of Opopanax. This time around there's also a little theme music, provided by the lovely May, which I thought a great fit with the radio pulp of the same period I'm hovering around. Whee.

Chapter 1: The Insomniac, Part 1]

(More information on the audio version is available here.)

Molly Nix,

Chapter 1: The Insomniac, Part 2

The Admin building was built to look like a cattle barn from the air, and I was starting to feel a little like I was off to slaughter as I stepped inside. It was the one building that housed people who could and would tell me my business, and I tried to spend as little time as possible there.

The main hallway ran straight the length of the building, and a trick of the eye and the tiling made the far door seem as tiny as something Alice might stumble across. I walked the maroon, black and gray linoleum, passing office name cards, work orders, staff postings, funny page clippings, and finally taking a right into the den. Schwerdtfeger and Able had standard issue offices elsewhere in the barn, but after hours visits were largely fireside announcements from overstuffed chairs.

The room was smaller than their combined pretenses would allow, and I’d always felt like I was trying to find a corner in which to stand between Schwerdtfeger’s stuffed animal heads, and Able’s shelves of economic treatises and textbooks.

“Well, hello, Ms. Nix.” Able opened, obviously trying to get a rise out of me.

“Well, hello, Madam Able.” Able’s eyes and forehead tightened, but I did notice a rise in Schwerdtfeger’s moustache.

“If you’ll keep your jocular nature to a minimum for a moment, we need to have a quick chat before you take flight, Mrs. Nix.” Schwerdtfeger’s attitude had me wondering if Tom had been right, if this might be a virus after all.

“I’ll see what I can do.” I replied, shuffling under the watchful eyes of some long dead five point buck.

“Aunt Millie called this morning. There’s a shack just south of the permafrost line, vaguely near a town called Milner, a lumber town. There are five bodies in the shack, all stiff at their porridge. The doctor on the scene said they died of dehydration, which is odd given that they all still had the remnants of milk in their cups. We don’t know how long they’d been there, but they’re fairly well preserved as the door was open and the main room helpfully refrigerated. The doctor is not sick, nor anyone else in the area.”

“Couldn’t it have been food poisoning? Hell, maybe even an old fashioned murder?” Despite the lack of outbreak, it was all sounding a little too virus-like for me. I tried to move a little but found myself bracketed in front of the door with a shelf full of Adam Smith and his ilk to the left of me and a small pack of beheaded mammals to my right.

Schwerdtfeger glanced at Able, and Able picked up where he’d left off.

“It’s possible. You’ll have to endeavour to find out when you get there. I believe Junior has the plane fueled and ready to go. You’ve got your usual budget, Junior will fly back with your first round of samples and then pick you up at the end of your five day window. When you touch down you’ll head alone into Milner, there you will locate Constable Lummock and he shall direct you to the cabin in question.”

In other words he didn’t want to pay Junior for sitting on his ass doing nothing for a few days, especially not when I might need some company or backup, that cheap bastard.

Then I was dismissed. I was pleased to be back in the hall, but this had easily been the briefest meeting on the flimsiest circumstances I’d had while in King’s employ.

The snow and wind blew away my train of thought as I exited to find Junior still patrolling the ash can.

“You know where we’re headed?”

“Yeah, more or less,” he replied with a grin. “Is it just me or were they acting weird, uh, …er than usual?”

I took in Junior’s grin and ridiculous leather flight cap, his good hand holding the cigarette he now smoked like a train before our departure.

“If you ask me, you’re all acting weird.”

I missed my wife and husband.

The farm dwindled to speck as we puttered across the black sky in the farm’s single engine cloud buster. It had been modified for long flights, but I honestly couldn’t tell the difference between that one and the crates the bush pilots would drop into Mom & Dad’s lodge.

It wasn’t long before the hum of the plane, and a forward looking sense of self preservation, lulled me to sleep. I found myself dreaming about climbing the massive timbers of the lodge walls, over the gutters and onto equal footing with the swaying treetops. The lake lay blue and infinite in front of me, and my head cocked to better hear an approaching mosquito buzz. A plane shimmered out of the distance, wobbling at first, but soon righting itself and settling into a landing that left its pontoons kissing the shore. The sound of the motor died, and the pines rustled. The wind seemed to smell of gin. I wondered if Dad was around. It was then that I noticed the windows of the plane were black as tar.

Our descent woke me. In those days we pulled up short of habitation and had a local friend meet us with a car if we could, no reason to make the townies think the Germans were launching an expeditionary force. The area was far too small for us to know anyone though, and Junior explained that they’d paid a local for his old Model A, to be delivered to the middle of nowhere beside a stretch of barren back road that they’d paid the same farmer to plow flat. Our landing depended on his work ethic and Junior’s ability to read the plane’s instruments, but we were soon down and not far from my ride.

The car, a Fordor, looked relatively well for its age but had been left at the road side so long it initially refused to turn over. I had my flash light out and was looking over the engine when Junior spoke from somewhere over my shoulder.


“I think I can get her straightened out, the cold is just making things stiff.”

I think he muttered some kind of response, but I was too busy tinkering. Suddenly his face loomed beside the manifold and I.

“Ignoring me?” His breath was a solid wall of gin, too thick to have been built since we’d touched down. I was glad the wind had waited to pick up. Still, it must have been a tricky landing given the conditions.

“I’m just busy. I thought you were pitching camp?”

“I’ve got a fire going, but my tent is still waiting.” He seemed to be expecting something.

“Well, that’s something at least, I’m going to need to boil some water to get out of here.”

The fire was burning within the L of the wing of the plane, and I knew Junior would set up his tent right under the flap as some minor added protection. I pulled the kettle from its storage compartment, stuffed it full of snow and placed it directly onto the burning logs, pocketing its detachable handle.

If he’d previously taken drink on the job to wait out the periods while I was off exploring, he’d never let me see it. My black overcoat created a cone of heat around me as I stooped close to the fire, one eye watching Junior pound in the last of his tent pegs.

“There should be some left over for coffee.” I said, nodding towards the kettle.

“Listen, Molly,” he attempted to mirror my crouch, but between wind and drink ended up in a position closer to reclining in the snow. “We’ve been working together for a while now, a long time really. We’ve spent a lot of long hours around campfires and card tables and… remember the first year you came to the farm, when we had that Christmas dance? Remember that dance?” He’d asked me to dance, and both AJ and Tom had smiled their assent. We’d had a stiff swing around the floor, and I’d spent the majority of the time silently and sweetly damning my two loves for letting me leave the table. I’m not much of a dancer.

“Do you know something about this piece of work that I don’t? “ The kettle was beginning to whistle, feasibly through the sheer force of my will. I pulled the handle from my pocket and lifted it from its now sunken position.

“Heh, no.” His face darkened though, which I took to mean he’d been struck by a flash of sobriety. He fell silent and after a moment I moved out of fire’s circle.

I was right, and a little hot water quickly had the car turned over and ready for the road. I was playing my flashlight through the backseat’s window, mentally checking off everything I’d collected from the plane, when I felt a hand reach through the gap between my overcoat’s brass buttons and run its fingers across my belly. I breathed a mist of gin as I turned, my elbow hammering Junior just below his right eye. He reeled, his hand slipping from my coat, and it was then that my boot connected with his left knee. His balance went out and he collapsed into a tangled jelly. To ensure closure I made a final connection with his diaphragm, firmly but not excessively, just as I’d been taught. While he fish puckered for air I dragged him back under the shelter of the plane wing.

“Look you drunken arse, we’ll have a talk about this when I get back tomorrow, but you better get your shit together or I’m going to hand it to you myself.”

He wheezed from his pile beside the fire, and I made my way back to the car.

The road was full of drifts, and it took some time and patience to finally make my way north into town. There was little warning between leaving the woods and entering the town proper, one minute I was keeping an eye out for wolves and the next I was pulling to a stop in front of a squat gray brick building, a single light visible in its large window. It was a meager main street, the police having easily the largest front on the road, the rest of the buildings dark in what was by then the earliest part of morning.

I stepped out and made my way around the hood, eyes straining through the large window to make out a pair of desks. I was wondering if I’d have to awaken Constable Lummock with a thorough door pounding when the entrance in question swung open. A large form lumbered from the doorway shouting harsh, unintelligible consonants back into the warmth. He turned and seemed un-phased to find me in his path on the stoop, passed with a curt nod and made his way further into the subzero dark beyond the building’s meager light.

She What?!

Currently I am without mother-in-law. That status won't change for a while, I think. She's pretty mad at me. She sends lovely notes to Karloff asking him to bring him self and Jr. for a visit. Karloff is of the thinking that it's all of us or none of us. Yet she asks, and just ignores the fact that there are other parts of his family here that are being blatantly disregarded.

My mother is of the thinking that it's Karloff's fault and all of this poly business is just so Karloff and Opop can run away together. Utter nonsense. So what does my mother do? She invites the in laws down for Easter. We didn't even know until ma'-in-law told Karloff that she wasn't coming. Imagine that. Mother thinks it would be a safe place Karloff and his family to see each other. Safe? What does that mean? I blew up at mom once through out their discovery of our lifestyle. But she is painting this picture that I am drugged out on antidepressants and lacking all empathy for everyone who truly loves me. Arg. Her mind has made me out to be something I'm not. I can't force her to see reality.

What if we got into who's 'fault' it was and they start granny beating each other.

It isn't relevant how it started. And if they wanted the real answer, it was a mutual discovery. It was a series on discussions over a period of time. No one wanted it more than another. Reality is, we are here now, and intervention or not, it isn't a sickness. There are no hidden intentions, just love and partnership each way.

At least when we speak now, ma and I, she waits for a response to her questions and truly listens. That's something, right? RiGhT?! *laughs nervously*

Friday, February 22, 2008

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Baby Daddy Debacle '08

So we got up yesterday. Early. We dropped the kids off next door until the bus came for school. We arrive at the court house with little time to spare. We go to information and get directed to our court room. We saw our lawyer along the way and he informed us that we had another fifteen minutes before court started. No sign of BD. We find a spot to sit, eyeing down the hallway to spot him out. We guess which is the opposing lawyer with a slight scowl.

Time to head in to see the judge and NO BD!? Yeah, we think, one for us. We step in to a very small room lined with robed lawyers. I sat seperately from the tribe as there was little seating. As we rose and sat again, our lawyer was whispering to his lawyer and scribbling down on a piece of paper. Opop signed the scribble and our lawyer began to speak to the judge with the opposing lawyer. Everything was in law speak and it was over in 2 minutes. BD will send us documents we've requested, or make his "best efforts" to find the documents. And access will remain status quo until the appointment of the children's laywer. We have opposing views with BD just as to what status quo is. He thinks he gets every weekend, but since late last year we have been taking one weekend a month and week days.

Our lawyer said to call him up and simply state that we are taking a weekend as per the agreement we made before this shite all started. So that's what Opop did last night. She asked why he wasn't in court because the judge asked if he was present. He said he was sick. But that he would like to speak to the littlin' over the weekend. Pretty easy.

So now we sit on our hands for 6 to 8 weeks to even know if we are having a visit. And then, it's months apparently before we get someone over here. No doubt cookies will be baking, a roaring fire in the hearth, and sweet music playing in the back ground. With our doggies away and children at play. They will fall in love with us, as does everyone else who comes to this merry land of Compoundia.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Ontario's First Family Day

Today in Ontario we had our first ever Family Day. We do not have nearly enough statutory holidays lol.

What does one do on this Family Day? We incorporated some of the kids favorite things. We started it off with lunch from McDonald's. What is it with kids and McDonald's. I'm not completely sold that it is because of the accompanying toy because after five minutes it's forgotten.

After lunch we headed outside for a winter fire, lovingly set ablaze by yours truly. Kids didn't pay much attention at first. Sledding down hills of snow left by the plowman peeked their interest more. But after a while they would run up to the adults warming by the fire to do the same. And then off they were again, squealing and giggling. Every so often hearing one trying to convince the other, once and for all, that they are indeed the queen or king of the castle :p

Once getting off our zillions of layers and damp boots, we started the kettle for hot chocolate and prepared a craft. They were cute little window sun catchers. I painted a Cardinal :)

After a supper of my (becoming) famous cheesy spaghetti the kids got back to their business and we to ours. I, working on the Molly Nix theme, found it very frustrating I couldn't get the sound quality right for your all. But that's news for another day.

First Family Day down, can't wait for the next. But honestly, that's what our days look like our here on the Compound. I hope they are always this happy.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

But I Wanna Hate Nazis!

I was reading the comments on Karloff's Indiana Jones post and although I have to admit I want to believe too....I'm a little disappointed with the lack of Nazis in the film.

Sure the soviets are cool bad guys....but why can't we hate on the nazis anymore?

Just look at the new Lego Indiana Jones game! They've decided to wipe out any reference to Nazis and replace them with an "anonymous genocidal, occultist, trenchcoat-wearing master-race." What really bugs me, though, is that the lego game is supposed to be reminiscent of the lego starwars games (ie. a lego recap of the three movies). Now, I ask you can you recap the Indy movies without Nazis?!

Well, I know I can sleep better at night knowing that I haven't had to think about *real* bad guys today (?!wtf?!)

Anyone remember the Metal Slug games? Sure, they were a no-name brand evil regime...but everyone knew who they really were! NAZIS! (Okay, so the boss guy was a little "Saddam-esque"...but the rest of them basically just stepped right out of the Third Reich!)

Remember when it was accepted? When it was funny to make an anti-Nazi joke? You can't get much cooler than the Blues Brothers...and they hate Illinois Nazis!

So really, what's the world coming to when you can't even hate Nazis?

PS: If I get any flames about being anti-nazi I'll puke

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Baby Daddy Debacle '08

We saw the first glimpses from our lawyer, laywering. Our experience so far has been hours of waiting for the appointment long past, in a waiting room. Followed by being invited into his office only to be accosted if we try to ask too many question or heaven forbid, interrupt. He has high moments, where we are all friends and he is patient and kind. Giggling, ordering food, all is well with the world. And those low times where he can't understand why we don't know the legal system and the relevance of each component of our case.

Anywho, we were in his office for another one of our session with Manic Depressive LL. B. when BD 's lawyer phones him. She just recieved some of our documentation and is responding to it. He did a great job, I was impressed. And this is the deal, she says the only thing her client has to go on is that our relationship is unconventional. She doesn't want this to go to court. Her case is thin and BD has always been delivered his daughter prompty and regularly since he agreed to do so. BD would rather not put through his weak emergency motion, he wants a representative of the children's lawyer to come visit us. And compare the interaction with the child and the parents.

We didn't know what to do. We can go through with the motion leaving it to a judge. But what if you get the wrong kind of judge. And hope because BD is unprepared, we would look like a much more suitable party. The other option, this rep of the children's lawyer, also has pros and cons to that as well. What if what may have been not such a big deal in court, is wide out in the open in our home. Our bed is giant, we have pictures of all of us around. It is very apparent. What if they aren't in agreement with that and they don't decide in our favor?

We decided to go with the rep coming over. They only come 50% of the time anyway if they believe it is unnecessary. And the process of getting a visit takes months and months. Further the status quo and bettering our case. Our lawyer doubts that they would come. And if so, BD's lawyer says she will advise her client to drop this business all together. It really is a question of the childs best interest. And that means staying with how things are if it is a good, sound place to be. She is in no physical harm etc... but there are those ya know, who get really really wigged out when you tell them what your family looks like.

We are still in court on the 20th to decide how much access BD will receive until the final discussion. BD wants to ensure he gets 4 weekends a month. Opop has been very kind in the past providing him so much time with the littlin', but it is not with in her best interest anymore. Now she is at school, all of the time she has for recreation is with him. And he believes that time to be his own so he will not put her in activities so as not to enter in his time. That, and he has no money. *coughcough*

In October last year, he agreed to let Opop have her for the week as per usual and 1 weekend. That was so great, time in pj's together :) But he wants to renege on that promise.

So what are we asking for? What the law deems appropriate as a general guideline, and that is every other weekend. So boo to that. Really hope we get that!!

Peace and love my Compoundians :)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Oh, Indy

Again, no tv, has this gotten around?

I want to believe.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

So there's that

Apologies for the silence lately, today is our last day to get supporting documentation in and most of our time recently has been spent collecting pictures, driving for signatures and conferencing with our lawyer. After today we have a week of relative silence, and then the first day with a judge (assuming nothing else comes up from Baby Daddy's end.) The first time up will be to determine where the lil'un will be staying for the duration of the proceedings.

I feel like this time is the canary-in-the-coal-mine for us... I hope this will be handled quickly, quietly and in our favour.

I have no interest in becoming case history to some future proceeding. I just want my family together.

BD decided not to play our relationship situation too heavily in his application, there's that at least, and we've blown his application out of the water in terms of quality and substance. As Opopanax said yesterday while browsing a stack of legal documentation: "I want to believe it's enough. I want to believe this isn't all for nothing." and as the ever present Gaunt said: "... I would like to think that people just aren't THAT stupid."

We all really appreciate the comments on May's first post on the topic, knowing people see it our way helps to take a lot of the wind out of the sails of the black galleon of doom.

Canadian Charter of Rights And Freedoms:

2. Everyone has the following fundamental freedoms:
a) freedom of conscience and religion;
b) freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communication;
c) freedom of peaceful assembly; and
d) freedom of association.

or even:

7. Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of the person and the right not to be deprived thereof except in accordance with the principles of fundamental justice.

Here's hoping.

Monday, February 11, 2008

lunch crumbs

The problem with "tell me how it all happened", and this is largely the same problem with "how did you find religion", is that a serious discussion may involve crises or decisions that one party or the other isn't going to be comfortable discussing. Not in a shady sense either, but simply as one of those things People Don't Talk About.

Friday, February 8, 2008

It Shall Set You Free?

Much has happened around here this last little while. We haven't spoken about it. But I got the o.k. tonight and I thought I would post a note.

Baby Daddy is taking us to court. He doesn't want his little one around us Poly's. We have nothing to fear we are told by our lawyer. But this is scary business. Our babies have the best care here. We are first and foremost parents. And fucking great ones at that. It would be a great loss.

He liked us at first. Until they wanted to move in. We live a little ways out of the city and he is convinced this will fall apart. He's never been denied access and we have always been responsible for pick up and drop off. We have offered visits and tours but he is disinterested.


We are preparing the best defense we can and hope that our truth prevails. We are getting support letters, records, pictures, anything we can together that will help.

Court is on the 20th. It isn't the final say, just a decision where she should stay before trial proceedings. Usually things stay status quo I hear.

So scary.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Dueling Billboards

- Found on Greta Christina's Blog

Flag Considerations

We have a flag pole, left here by one of the previous occupiers, and we've been discussing what design we should use for the national flag. The legislative system in Compoundia is still a little liquid, decisions tend to be made in (occasionally smokey) back rooms and then implemented on the civilian populace (median age: 5) with little democratic process. So it seems in line to open the floor to foreign delegates for commentary and a sense of national transparency. (But don't go poking around our naval disclosure.)

These are all little doodles (and obviously only vague ideas) for the main symbology. I etched them while fuming about how crap the monster reveal was as we watched the second season of lost on DVD. Compoundia is displeased by your foreign plots!

I like the item on the left of the upper image, as it reminds me somehow of the flux capacitor, which has a long and secret history here. There's something pleasing about the forked image, but it looks a little too like an American football official informing the crowd it's good while under odd lighting.

The top two in the below image are obviously variations of the same, but I kind of prefer the one on the right, even if it seems a little sciencey (The technology sector is currently a large part of our GDP). I considered putting dots on the inner ring to represent the heirs apparent, in the style of the American flag's stars-for-states, but how to divide them became a problem. The bottom one actually just makes me think of a villianous corporation or super-consortium. Or possibly somehow nautical.

Thoughts from home or abroad? Colour scheme is also up in the air as far as I know.


A step towards three-parent babies?

Progress report shows clinical application of technique still far away.

A predictable media circus followed a UK newspaper's report yesterday that scientists have created so-called 'three-parent embryos'. But some of the reports have misconstrued what the scientists have actually done thus far, and the scientists caution that their unpublished work, while promising, is still far from clinical use. - more

We don't have cable, and that often makes it difficult to tell what kind of reach a news item has. We spent a lot of time looking over the incoming information from super Tuesday, but I hadn't heard about this until I saw it in a boing boing post.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

funny seeing you here

It hailed earlier, dainty meteors careening off of the tin roof. Almost all of us were almost asleep, but now the lights are on and it's all weddings and lessons on Russian.

If there was a cotton candy dispenser and a pony, my early childhood suppositions about what grown-ups did after we were forced to bed just might be true.

Also, I'm glad I work from home.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Happy Birthday, George

George Andrew Romero (born February 4, 1940) is an American director, writer, editor and actor. He is best known for his Dead Series of four horror movies featuring a zombie apocalypse theme and a commentary on modern society. - Wikipedia

The question is, will my lovely wives allow me to go to Diary of the Dead?

(If it will even be available near us...)