Thursday, March 29, 2007, posted by Q6 at 10:35 PM
This is just too funny. Here's what I see when I open this evening:

"Bono kighted; son thinks he's a Jedi."

Tuesday, March 27, 2007, posted by Q6 at 6:35 PM
Last weekend, I was re-introduced to a most potent drug: relaxation. I'm not talking about the I'm-gonna-sit-and-watch-the-game-on-TV kind of relaxation; I'm talking about miles-from-civilization, mind-numbing-quiet, surrounded-by-friends relaxation.

Thanks to the kindness of a friend at work, I got to spend the weekend in Big Bear. It's a nice little cabin in a very peaceful area, less than 20 minutes from the snow. I didn't go snowboarding (though I was tempted), as I figured most people would be boarding on a slurpee by noon. I'll have to go next season.

Honestly, it was just good to get away for the weekend with people I enjoy spending time with (my girlfriend being first, second, third, and fourth on the list). I was able to relax. I didn't access e-mail. I didn't bring ANY work to do.

It was nice. I could get used to it.
Saturday, March 10, 2007, posted by Q6 at 10:24 AM
Here's the kind of dad I am: my son is going out with a friend on Saturday while I'm (sadly) at work. I ask him to remind me to give him the money he needs before bed on Friday night, which, because he's just about as tired as I am, he doesn't do. So it's 4:30am on Saturday, I'm groggy, I'm halfway to work, I've got tons of stuff to do by a 7:30am deadline, and he doesn't have the money he needs. What do I do?

That's right. I turned around, went home, and left the money for him. 'Cause that's how I roll.
, posted by Q6 at 9:42 AM
My iPod shuffled to a song by miGGs, from the "Insomnia" album. The lyrics reminded me of my girlfriend, who has been really supportive of my "I'm tired, stressed, and all 'spikes and angles'" problem lately. The lyrics went like this:
"You put your arms around my neck, and suddenly everything's wonderful."
Wednesday, March 07, 2007, posted by Q6 at 9:53 PM
My daughter, the younger of my two children, turned thirteen this week. Both my children are now teenagers (my son will be fifteen next month), and although I don't wonder where the time went I do feel just a little bit geriatric over the whole thing. (Yes, I know--I'm not even forty yet. Look, this is the oldest I'VE ever been, so just let me work through it, willya?) I recently completed a little project for myself: I took lots of old pictures I had laying about, used some of them to "repair" some photo albums*, and used the rest to fill two gigantic collage frames. Most of the pictures are of the kids at various ages. I know EXACTLY where the time went, and I can look at it every time I go up or down my stairs. The pictures are great, and you can really see the kids grow up in them.

No, my issues about their ages comes from a completely different place: my own childhood. My father passed away when I was thirteen; although I won't have "outlived" him for another couple of years, my own kids will now have a father whose blueprint has expired. I didn't have a dad after thirteen years old (Mom, you are great, no question), so I'm not altogether sure how to be one for someone older than thirteen (I went through this with my boy, too). Some people tell me I'm doing fine, but I have moments of concern. I suppose it's just one of those "one day at a time" things that I have to grow comfortable with.

It is cool, though, to look at those frames. It makes me feel a lot better to watch them grow up all over again in just a few minutes' time.

* I have several photo albums of the kids from my first marriage--their mother made them. My second wife took it upon herself to "edit"; she hid or removed religious pages from the pre-Judaic-conversion days, and made a few other changes. I am happy to report with some money, some time, a local Creative Memories consultant, and some TLC, those books are back to their original condition. Yay, me.
, posted by Q6 at 9:47 PM
Got my taxes done, did them all by myself, didn't cheat once, and got them in last week. The refunds are already rolling in. A lot of people I know (my mother, my girlfriend, people at work) have "tax people" that they use. Me, I'm a Turbo Tax guy. I don't know if it's because I like using that kind of software, or if it's because I have this whole homemade spreadsheet on which I keep my books, or if it's simply because I'm a control freak who doesn't trust anyone else to do it right. I just do my own taxes. Not that I understand tax law or accounting AT ALL; I'm probably not getting back all that I could. I'm not in this to screw over the government or get more than my fair share.

Maybe it's because I don't like being that guy [anymore] on the news who's cruising by the post office at about 11:15pm on April 15th . . . .
Sunday, March 04, 2007, posted by Q6 at 5:27 PM
This is the new addition to our family. He's a striped snow corn snake, and he's about a foot and a half long. (This is my son's second pet snake; the first one, much younger, died of unknown causes.) I don't know that he's fully used to being handled--my son could do that more often and accelerate The General's acclimation--but he sure knows how to handle a mouse. We've actually watched as he stalks the thing, then he pounces on it with lightning speed. We also found a ceramic heating coil that screws into the light fixture, so there's no more irritating red light all night long. Named unwittingly by my girlfriend ("General Cornwallis"--he's a corn snake), he seems to be happy in his new home. He burrows in his shavings quite a bit--I'm not sure what that means yet--and we hope to have him around a good long time.
Friday, March 02, 2007, posted by Q6 at 6:00 PM


So my 2000 Hyundai is now on its own. My driving habits being what they are, I've managed to burn up the 100,000 mile portion of my warranty in seven years instead of their presumed ten. I do most of the maintenance myself--oil, filters, fluids, tune-ups, brake pads (and I've done electrical, transmission, and alternator work on other cars I've had) and I've only had to use the warranty on this car once. It's a good little car. I have no idea how much longer it will last; the gas milage seems to be declining lately, but I haven't done much freeway driving in it recently and that may be messing with my calculations. I also have no idea how I'd obtain a new one if I had to. I don't have the money to buy, I don't [think I] have the credit to finance one, and I don't know enough about car leases to determine if it is or isn't a waste of money.

Of course, there's always my bike . . .