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I'm Alive / Lonely Cats on Christmas

Okay, I've been studenting, dadding, and in my free time gaming and/or tv watching, which has taken a lot of time away from blogging.

I'm not dead. There will be more updates in teh future.

Resident Evil VI: Mercenaries mode is awesome.

My family has been taking care of a cat that comes by every day. She's taken to sleeping in bed next to me every night, but this morning she really pissed me off--clawing at me and biting my hand for petting her head--that I didn't let her in all day and I won't let her in the room tonight. But she can stay inside.

She's crazy. Her meows are dreadful, like a freaking alley cat. My kids are scared of her, but she is tame enough and doesn't scratch them. Much. They like her and want to play with her, but she's scared of them, too. They keep trying to touch her tail and walk up behind her.

Smokey wants to be part of the family, and she's putting forth some effort to calm down around us and not tear the shit out of our couches or claw us. But sometimes it's not enough. She's got too much street in her to be that domesticated. And her claws need to go and she needs a bath. I wish I knew if she really did have owners.

Christmas break is really nice. I've been enjoying the extra time with my family a great deal. It's so nice to be able to hang around with them every evening, especially Megan, who I don't see much while school's in session.

Christmas holiday has indeed been satisfying, as it always seems to be. I'm glad I stuck with a woman who likes to get into the Christmas spirit, cause I'm terrible at that and Megan's awesome at it. Picks the right music and makes cookies and treats and badass gravy. Mm.

Christmas Eve we hosted friends over at our house for a dinner party. Got to use our kitchen table with the leaf in the middle for the first time.

This morning, opening presents was more of a chore at times than fun, but for the most part it was a good time. My kids are not used to Christmas, and unwrapping presents. They did not understand why we kept trying to get them to open more. Also the lack of normal daily routine threw them off. I'm sure tomorrow they'll appreciate a return to normalcy. Frankly, so will I, but a small part of me will miss that microcosm of the Christmas time of year.

Ian says he's getting me something very metal, which naturally makes me drool. I cannot wait to see what it is. I'll find out on Friday.

Having kids sure makes Christmas different, huh? A whole bunch of extra shit to consider, with teaching moments to grasp onto and lessons to impart hastily, impatiently, and caffeinatedly.

Well, now I'm in bed and finishing this up, and Smokey is purring next to me on the bed, so I guess she can stay. She let herself in all sneaky like when I was getting my jammies on, and jumped right up onto the bed.

I suppose no cat should be alone on Christmas night.

Here are some pics from earlier this month. I'll get Christmas pics up soon.


Quit Another Band

Area man burns bridge, looks to new horizons

So I joined and quit a band during Fall quarter this year, which is in finals week now at UW.

And in true Phil Collins fashion, I quit by text. It was a surprise to both the other guys that I had band problems at all, so it was a bit of a bomb I dropped on them. I feel bad about that.

Still, I don't think it was worth even a conversation. If you want to ask me why I quit, go ahead and email me or leave a comment or something. But no one outside the band is going to give two shits anyway. We were just starting out, trying to find a sound and a dynamic that would allow us to click together. It wasn't exactly happening for me.

We landed a show, through one friend who knew another, which was awesome--but we weren't prepared for it. We rushed to build and finalize a four-song set list. It felt good to get that together, and to go onstaget and play under the lights, and in front of the other bands and their girlfriends. It was good, yeah.

We all decided afterward that the songs were shitty, so we ditched them and began working on new material. But we could only practice once per week! And sometimes one of us would have something going on and have to cancel. So there was almost no hope of getting anything solid done any time soon.

Plus I had my stupid bullshit problems, so I had to quit. And I feel that I was significantly slighted by one guy in the band because he wasted my time. Now, not to say that my time is super-duper-extra-valuable, but when I leave the house, that means I leave my kids with someone--in this case, my partner whom I have to have on my good side, which means not leaving the kids with her all the time.

So when I packed all my gear up and left the house to drive to practice and received no answer to my door knocks, texts, and calls, since I had arranged my sleep the night and morning beforehand to prepare for practice, since Megan and I got into a kind of half-argument about me wanting to have an additional practice this week, and since I sat there on this guy's porch in the cold for a half hour while he slept, I got kinda pissed.

Then I started remembering how all of my song ideas that I had brought to practice beforehand were shot down; how our songwriting was limited and directionless; how practices were only once/wk; how I wasn't that crazy about our nice-but-sleepy bandmate's musicianship or songwriting ability; how there were no opportunities in Jungfrau for me to stretch my bass playing and dazzle the audience with anything remotely heavy or "busy"--by the guy who couldn't wake up to let me in, who could have texted me any time the night before or in the morning to tell me not to interrupt my day with band practice.

And it made me wonder whether any of my efforts to contribute to this band were worth it, because if this was the kind of behavior I could expect, then I was not going to stick around. Now if the music had been awesome, it would have been another story.

So quitting over text seemed sufficient.

Now I am free, at school, in a library, where the atmosphere is quiet and collegial. Ahh, a breath of fresh air every time. I have to work on this final paper for Race and the Law class, taught by Dr. Heather Pool. It needs to address how the SCOTUS case I chose, Bakke, upholds or ...downholds The Racial Contract, a book by Charles Mills.

Trust me, Mills's book is good enough to write a million papers on. It is an effective series of arguments that leaves no stone unturned as to the nature of white supremacy. He even lumps the very concept of racism into his overarching argument, broad and sufficiently frightening.

So I have enough to think about to distract me from the slightly nagging guilt of dropping a bomb on two completely nice guys.

But before I came to school today, to get out ALL THE GUITAR PLAYING DEMONS RAGING INSIDE ME, I plugged in my guitar for the first time in at least two months. As you recall, I had been playing bass in Jungfrau, leaving my guitar to wait by the wayside, just hanging out down there in the basement in its grey, fur-lined case, just chillin.

fuckin plugged that bitch in today and let her rip. Played some old stuff, played some new stuff, and regained my overall musical focus--I need to be in a metal band, where I write the songs. Not too much to ask, right?'d be surprised in Seattle how hard that is to pull off....

Got any recommendations for what my ad in various musicians personals ads should say?