Archive for the ‘geek’ category

Such a beautiful place it is, to be with friends

July 14th, 2011

Tomorrow, Kid1 will be taking Kid2 and me to see Harry Potter 7 Part 2, his treat. This is such a bitter-sweet experience for me and I’m not sure I could ever truly articulate why. But I am going to try anyway.

10 years ago, on opening night, I took Kid1 to see the first Harry Potter movie. Kid2 was not yet old enough. And if my memory is serving me correctly, it was the first movie I had taken him to see in the theatre. We arrived at the theatre a couple hours before curtain, waiting in a huddled mass with loads of other people.

It wasn’t until Harry Potter mania had started to build around the first movie that I read the first two books. I had heard the name in the media and how it was supposedly the next best thing since sliced bread, but it wasn’t a ‘thing’ in my small town. I knew no-one who had read the books or even cared to. The third and fourth books were already published as well, but I wasn’t going to purchase any of them until I had read the first two books, which were given to me to read by my mother.

I had decided to read them first, alone, in order to decide if this was even something my children would enjoy and to help me decide if it would be appropriate to bring my then 6-year-old child to see. I was immediately hooked.

It wasn’t because it was a great work of fiction. The books are not exactly literary works of art. But they were magic nonetheless. When I would talk with other adults who had read them, they would complain about how childish and simply written they were. Without trying to show my anger and snobbishness, I would politely try to remind them that is because they are children books. They are suppose to be written that way. Heated debates would begin, which went something like, “When we were children, we read Lord of the Rings in grade school. Those are considered children’s books. Is this the best authors can come up with now for youth?” I would smile and say, “Ah, yes. But we also had The Secret World of Og and Charlotte’s Web. Those are considered great classics and cannot be compared to Lord of the Rings.” But I digress. I suppose the main thing my friends had an issue with is that I, someone who can be quite a snob at times, adored Harry Potter. But as I already said, there was magic in them.

I can’t even begin to go into every thing I ended up taking away from the story when I would sit down and read each book. That would require a novel in itself. But outside of the emotional and personal journey these books took me on, these journeys were shared with my boys.

After I finally finished the first two books, I sat down with Kid1 and read them to him in preparation for the movie. I will never forget how freaked out he got when I would do the voices for the basilisk in the walls. One time, I made him cry and he begged me to stop using that voice when I read and instead, to use my normal voice.

These moments were wonderful. We would be curled up on the couch, under the blankets, as I painted the story of Harry Potter within my child’s brain to see. There were many nights of, “Oh, mum. Just one more chapter. PLEEEEEASE!” I would give in, only for the next, “PLEEEEASE, one more chapter. I promise, I’ll go to bed when you are done.”

These stories also were the cause of many wonderful talks about how to treat others, about what is fair and isn’t, about never giving up no matter what you are facing and more. These stories caused us to cry together, laugh together, get angry together, cheer together and mourn together.

After the successful indoctrination into the Harry Potter world after the first two books and the first movie, Harry Potter and his friends became a regular fixture in our household. I immediately purchased the next two books. As Kid2 got older, I would later read the books with him and watch the movies with him. Soon, Kid2 was old enough where when a movie was released or a book was released, all three of us were waiting in line together, reading them together, watching them together, talking about them together, crying together, laughing together, getting angry together, cheering together and mourning together. The exception to this is Harry Potter 7 Part 1, which Kid1 took Kid2 to see, his treat, just the two of them, as some brother bonding thing.

(No, I’m not bitter about that. I think it is sweet that the older brother wanted to take the younger brother on a bro date… Well, maybe I’m a little bit bitter.)

Harry Potter was also the source of many games. We fashioned our own wands made out of bamboo and would have wand duels in the backyard or on hikes. For years, I’ve been accused of having the ability to apparate because I suddenly appear in the same room with them and they didn’t see or hear me coming. That is when I would have to remind them that if I could in fact apparate, there’d be a definite cracking noise every time I did.

For 10 years, Harry Potter has been a permanent fixture in our household. My boys and I have grown-up together, alongside Harry.

And now, Kid1 is old enough where he is taking both his brother and me to see the final installment tomorrow. We have come full circle. It is really bitter-sweet. Thinking about how much we have grown together and have bonded together in the last 10 years, all thanks to Harry Potter, and thinking about how it is about to come to its final end is causing me to weep.

10 years is a long time to share something with anyone, especially your children. Out of every one I know, most families still have young children. It has only been in the last couple of years that they’ve poured all things Harry Potter down their throats. Some of my friends’ children are still too young and it will be a few more years before they introduce them to Harry Potter. And when they do, it will probably be in one large dose, instead of a constant stream of sharing and learning more about Harry and his friends.

I don’t know what I’m going to do now that it is done. Both my boys are really excited about tomorrow but they are also both sad. The entire household is in some weird state of mourning at the moment. Yes, for the hardcore fans, there is Pottermore and talk of other things. But, for this house, Harry Potter isn’t about JK Rowling or witches and wizards or being geeky or a fan-culture things. If nobody else in the world loved Harry Potter, we wouldn’t care because that does not diminish the experiences we had, thanks to these stories, over the last 10 years.

We will still continue to talk about Harry Potter. We will probably still continue to re-read and re-watch the movies together. But I am going to miss the shared anticipation and the newness of it all, this sense of complete joy and excitement that we are about to embark on the next installment of the journey, together.

And there is so much more. But I’m just way too sad and happy right now to even begin to express it all. I think I’m beginning to write and talk in circles.

Anyway, thank you JK Rowling for writing these books and giving something constant that my boys and I could look forward to together. Thank you for giving something to share, something we could rely on and escape into together when other things in our lives were crazy and scary. Thank you for allowing us to create our own magic in our family. Thank you for this gift.

In Which Kid2 and I Spend 3 Hours Bonding in the Emergency Room

January 29th, 2011

(Blogs published at this time are riddled with loads of toaster errors and mistakes. They will be mostly corrected when brain is more functional)

I’ve been wanting to write this blog every since the “incident”, which occurred last Sunday night. However, my week has been beyond crazy. Hopefully, enough of these events are still fresh enough in my mind where I can retell the magic of these events.

Last Sunday, as I was preparing to hand off the autodj at the radio station to the next personality, it had dawned on me that Kid2 was a few minutes late arriving home from playing at a friend’s house. I did my best to remain calm and not worry that some horrible thing had happened to him, causing him to be late.

15 minutes before I was to hand over the stream, I heard the door open and I was able to breathe a sigh of relief, knowing that he had arrived home safely and in one piece. I continued on with my work, now relieved, freeing my brain from the distraction of wondering where the child was. That is when it happened. I heard what sounded like a child tumbling down the stairs, followed by the type of yell one would expect if someone, violently, fell down the stairs.

Without saying a word to the person I was currently in conversation with, I leaped out of my chair and ran to the door and opened it, expecting to see a twisted and mangled mess of a child. Upon opening the door, I discovered a child sitting on one of the bottom stairs, clutching one foot, nearly in tears and declaring, “I think it’s broken. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! (insert with the passion of “KHHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAN here).”

Trying my best to appear outwardly calm, I asked, “OMG! Are you okay?!?! How did you fall?!?! What happened???!!!? SPEAK TO ME!” I’m pretty sure I failed at the whole trying to convey that I am calm, in order to keep the child calm in an attempt to keep him from spiraling into further emotional distress. He looked at me like I was a wee bit daft and responded, “Yeah… I’m fine… I DROPPED MY LAPTOP DOWN THE STAIRS AND I THINK IT IS BROKEN!! THIS IS THE WORST!” Suddenly, I became rather confused and ask him, “So you didn’t fall? Then why the screams as if you were dying?” He regarded me as if I had two heads and replied, “Didn’t you hear me?!? I DROPPED MY LAPTOP DOWN THE STAIRS AND I THINK I MAY HAVE BROKEN IT!!!!”, which was followed by the “jeez, you’re slow” sigh that teenagers give us.

Still not convinced that he was okay and not broken, as it sounded like a body fell down the stairs and not a laptop plus he was clutching his foot, I said, “Forget the laptop. Are YOU okay?” That was THE wrong thing to say. After having a meltdown as  a result the end of the world being nigh if he broke his laptop, he said, “I’m okay. I just hurt my foot at my friend’s house and limping down the stairs made me drop my laptop and I THINK I BROKE IT!”

Trying my best to get him to forget the laptop without actually making the mistake of saying those words again, I said, “Take off your shoe and sock and let me take a look.” He tried to tell me that it was fine, it was just a bit sore and swollen, that it was no big deal. Remembering that I had someone waiting for me, I told him, “Stop arguing with me and let me take a look at your damned foot!”

That is when I saw it: the swollen and already bruised mess of a foot. This foot once was a sweet, Flinstone type, baby foot. However, in the last year, it has begun transforming into a man foot, currently made more manly, as it was swelling and turning black. He kept trying to reassure me that all was okay with him, that the real victim was his laptop. That is, until I pressed on one of his joints, which caused him to exclaim, through a yelp, “Okay! Maybe my foot isn’t fine. BUT I THINK I BROKE MY LAPTOP!”

Trying my best to remain patient over his obvious misguided priorities, I informed him that we would be having to make a trip to the emergency room. I quickly ran back to my computer, got the next personality settled, arranged for someone to deal with the autodj in the event I was not back within 4 hours, arranged for a ride to the ER, told him to put his sock and shoe back on his foot and told him NOT TO MOVE!

I was hoping that it would be empty in the ER, for two reasons: 1) Nobody wants to spend their Sunday evening in the ER, especially if they are having to worry that their child is broken; and 2) Lupus + sick people with their germs in the ER = the potential for a lot of bad things. My hopes were quickly smashed to trillions of shards, the moment we arrived. The line to see the Triage nurse began at her desk and ended at the entrance to the ER and that is how it remained for hours. At one point, people were having to wait in line, outside of the doors. Instantly, I prepared myself for a very long night, as I knew he was not critical and there were people with rashes, fevers and coughs (making them automatically more emergent) in line with us.

Finally, it was our turn to see the triage nurse. It was during this time my brain nearly exploded, yet again, when I learned that his foot had been like that for THREE HOURS, before he decided to come home. When he had said, “I just hurt my foot at my friend’s house”, I thought he actually meant he just did it, not that he meant in the “it’s no big deal, it is only a hurt foot” new fangled way kids talk, sense. I think my head may have pivoted, or something, and I found myself asking him three times, “You did this 3 hours ago and you didn’t come home?!?” because I couldn’t believe what I was hearing.

The nurse proceeded to ask me about his allergies, medical conditions, etc. It tried my best to answer them, without looking back at kid2 and asking him the same question over and over. The entire time, my brain was overloading and doing it’s circular thinking thing, trying to assimilate that my child waited 3 hours before coming home, with his only concern being for his laptop.

The nurse finally cleared us from triage and waved us down to the registration desk, where I proceeded to instill into Kid2 that if any thing like this were to happen again, he is to immediately come back home. I must have told him, “If ANY THING like this happens again, you are to immediately come home” more times than I realised, as I was met with an exacerbated sigh and, “ALRIGHT MUM! I get it! Next time, I’ll come home, right away! SHEESH!”

Finally, we were able to take our seats in the waiting area and 30 minutes of failing to remain calm upon the realisation that my child has odd priorities, turned into magic.

He brought his iPod with him to keep him occupied during the wait. It was the first time I was ever happy that his dad had purchased it for him. He showed me all of his different apps and we discussed them whilst he played. It was a wonderful distraction from his hurting foot, the fact we were in the ER with what he was hoping was his first broken bone (something about battle wounds) and it allowed my brain to slightly distract itself from those who had fever, coughs and weird rashes.

After waiting for about 30 minutes, we were finally called in the treatment area. And that is when the real magic began.

We geeked out over so many different things. I also ended up learning a lot about the way his brain works during the process. We were discussing what he thought was better: Marvel or DC. This taught me that his brain works even more similarly to mine than previously thought.  Where I see the world as either “loud” or “muted”, he describes those things in “bold” and “flat”. An example of this is when he told me about his preferences and why. He told me he prefers DC over Marvel, not only because he thinks DC is more mature that Marvel but because DC is “bold” in his brain and Marvel is “flat.” He then told me that he sees most of the world as either “bold” or “flat” and he has a hard time describing things to other people, as those are the only words he can think of to illustrate it in any fashion. Immediately, I knew exactly what he meant when he said that and it was all I could do to not squee.

I have a hard time communicating the world to people, as I don’t really see my environment as “normals” do. It made me extremely happy that I actually got what he was saying. It made me even happier that he had someone he could describe the world to in such a fashion, who would just get it and nod, knowingly.

I considering him for a moment and I considered the situation. This prompted me to ask, “What would you do if you didn’t have a geeky mum? What would you do if you couldn’t share all of these things with me?” He replied, “I’d probably never speak because I’d have nobody who understood what I am talking about, especially when I have to use words like “bold” and “flat”. It is hard to talk with people sometimes.” Immediately, I understood exactly how he felt.

He went into his quiet place for a few moments. I considered him some more and asked, “Do you think you will have geeky kids?” He replied, “Well IF I have kids, I’m don’t really know. I would like them to be geeky so I can share with them like we do. But what if they’re not geeky, mum? How would I be able to talk with them?” I smiled and responded, “Well, I’m not sure if I’d worry about that, too much. I mean, look at you and your brother. You are both very individual people. However, you and your brother are my personality, split right down the middle. Your brother is my nerdy, scientific, overly rational side. You are my geeky, artistic, creative side. Yes, there are a few overlaps, but overall, you and your brother are me but split in half. Look at Auntie Catherine and your cousin. They are very similar as well. And I think you’ll marry an intelligent woman and end up having intelligent children.” That is when things went sideways, but in a wonderful direction. Well, wonderful to me but I’m not sure what those, who were listening to our conversation, thought about it.

He looked at me and asked, “What if I don’t get married. Then I won’t have any kids.” I chuckled and replied, “You don’t NEED to get married. Okay, then. Let me rephrase. I think you’ll enter a long-term, committed relationship with an intelligent woman and end up having intelligent children.” Mistakenly, I thought it was time to move on to the next topic of conversation.

Without pause, he asked, “Well what if I have sex with a girl who is delayed, mentally, the condom breaks and I end up getting her pregnant?” I responded, “I don’t think you’ll have sex with someone who has special needs. You are not going to be an asshat and take advantage of someone in such a fashion.” To which he replied, “But what if I get drunk, have sex with a girl who is delayed, the condom breaks and she gets pregnant?” With a mix of amusement and shock, I responded, “Well that is a asshat move and I didn’t raise an asshat who disrespects women in such a fashion. And if for some reason, that were to happen, then you’ll figure it out then. Regardless, the child will still be wonderful because it is yours and you are wonderful. Are you finished asking me the less likely scenarios?” He told me he was and he was ready to move to the next topic. (I think I taught him way too well to look at all sides of an equation and plan for all possibilities).

We continued discussing many other topics of nerd and geek nature, much the amusement of those around us. And then it was time for his x-ray and something else happened that I found to be so very wonderful and amusing.

As the x-ray tech was manipulating his foot and taking the films, she kept asking him questions about school and the sorts of things he is in to. He’d respond and then she’d turn to me and say, “Wow. He is so mature for 11.” Or she would try to repress a big laugh, smile to me and say, “Your child is such a doll. He is so well spoken and polite, especially for 11. I think he is great.”  The x-ray tech was taking the final film, when she asked him, “When I’m done here, would you like a sticker?” To my great pleasure and to her pleasure and amusement, he replied, “Nah. That’s okay. I’m not really partial to stickers. It is best if you keep it for the next kid.” She tried her best to repress her “awwwwh” as she gave me another “wow” and said to him, “Are you sure? They are glow in the dark!” To which he said, “Nah. Really. I’m okay.” She decided to tear one off of the strip anyway, walked over to him and said, “Look. They aren’t “kid” stickers. I think you’ll like this one.” He shrugged his shoulders and replied, “Okay. I suppose I’ll take it. I can bring it to school and brag to all my friends about how I had my first x-ray and here is the proof.” She tried her best to repress her laugh, but didn’t quite succeed.

We went back to the treatment area, where kid2 began to bombard me with questions about why I had to stand behind the wall with the x-ray tech. I told him that it was because it protects me from the radiation. A little bit horrified, he asked, “So it is okay for ME to be bombarded with radiation.. .me… a kid… but not you??” I repressed another laugh as I responded, “In normal circumstances, it is not okay. But these are not normal circumstances. Exposing you to radiation was necessary to take the x-ray. Had the situation been reversed and I needed the x-ray, you’d have been behind the wall during the process, in order to limit the exposure as best as possible.” With that, he breathed a sigh of relief and we were able to move on.

A little more time went on. We learned his foot was not broken, it was only badly bruised and sprained, much to his displeasure. (He was really wanting it to be broken). And just under 3 hours after arrival, we were able to go home, passing the still revolving door of walk-in patients.

I know I’m missing a lot of pieces from this story. However, despite the horrible circumstances surrounding the bonding time, it was one of the best times we’ve had in a while. Sure, we are always talking and sharing. Our days are spent exchanging geek banter. But that night we shared things on a level that we hadn’t shared in quite a while, allowing me to see him in a whole new light and gaining better understanding of who he is, how he thinks and just how amazing he is.

And I am glad for it.

In Which Twitter Is The Driving Force Behind A Story

January 1st, 2011

A little bit of a back story before I get to the piece of hilarity. There are these three humans who I have the awesome fortune of working with at The Force 925. Their names are: Joe ‘Covenant’ Lamb (@JoeCovenant) (you should be familiar with Joe by now), Megan Allen (@mAyalaAllen) and Orev Deniker (@Aziraphel).

Let’s just say there was some banter between the 4 of us. Megan turned this banter into a story. And it is AWESOME! We are hoping to record this story (the 4 of us, reading our own parts) and then she will broadcast it on the station. At which point, the audio will be made available (if it gets done. PLEASE let it get done).

I realize some of you are not familiar with all the “characters” involved. But I think this story is very entertaining, even if you do not know the people behind the “characters.” What makes the story even more awesome, it was written around a flurry of tweets we were sending to each other.

So without further ado:

Viking Angst by Megan Allen

“Viking angst!” Both women in the room jumped in their seats at the quite surprising entrance of Joe. “I hope it leads to Viking death.”

“My Pirate angst sometimes leads to Pirate death,” Megan shrugged a little. “Why are you here instead of making this Viking angst happen?”

“Father Ted,” was the only reply.

Jules clicked in her tongue as she shook her head. “You should be writing, Joe.” She got That look on her face and even Megan had to look away.

“I feel like I should be writing now, and I’m not the one who said I was going to write,” she mumbled as she looked back down at her e-reader. “That look, it’s the look a mother.”

“I’m immune to it,” Joe declared.

“Balls!” Jules head shot up and she pointed at Joe. Megan bit her lip from laughing at the matching look that Joe somehow managed to imitate Jules exactly. Suddenly a battle of expressions erupted. The two competitors stood up from their seats, and took to the middle of the room.

Megan blinked, then looked back at the silent Orev in the corner. He only raised an eyebrow and shrugged, then both turned back to the unusual display taking place. Jules scrunched up her brows and her mouth opened slightly, as if to say, ‘What the-?’ Joe tilted his head a little, pointed at Jules, then pointed at his shirt. The two on-lookers tilted their heads quizzically.

‘Josephology: The study of Joe’ was what was printed, and no words were needed.

“I could end this easily,” Megan muttered to no one in particular. Putting down her e-reader she stood up from her chair and walked over to stand between the two combatants. Pulling out a pair of sunglasses from jacket pocket she suddenly turned to the side, tilted her head down, put the sunglasses on and put her hands on her hips.

Joe and Jules exchanged, another, expression, and looked over at Megan. “I think that,” Megan looked up slightly taking off the sunglasses, “I win the game.” She quickly walked off.

“Yeooooooow!” Orev yelled from the corner, playing the air guitar.

Jules suddenly pointed her finger, directing a rather nefarious look towards Megan. “Blasphemer!” Joe was speechless, not sure how to react to the freakish display that just occurred, and Megan was secretly glad.

“I should get back to writing,” Joe finally sputtered out.

“Happy killing and brutality!” Jules smiled and waved as Joe started to sulk away.

“Oh gods, what have I gotten myself into,” Orev said from his chair, his eyes glued to the screen of his laptop, messing with his playlist.

“I did warn you when I interviewed you,” Jules told him, grabbing a cup that was filled with coffee. “This station is loads of insanity and fun.”

“Welcome to the family!” Megan slid back into the room, sans sunglasses, her arms spread wide.

“Run,” Joe voiced echoed from the hallway, where he had stopped. “While you still have time,…. Run!” All three occupants of the room turned to look at the man standing in the opening of the archway. “You’re young, you still have a chance to live!”

“I’m 23, what about me?” Megan put an hand on her hip. Joe looked at her and shook his head discouragingly.

“You’re even Younger. But then again, young also means foolish, so you sadly don’t know any better.” He gave a mournful sigh. “Of course, when I was 23, I wasn’t young at all.” A sly grin crossed his face.

“You are so bloody full of it, Joe!” Jules didn’t bother to look at her friend as she drank some of her coffee, thinking about her to-do list that needed to be completed.

“Just because, Joe,” Orev spoke up, “you are too old and wizened to appreciate these fine ladies,…” he trailed off, knowing that he had gotten his point across.

“Not at all,” the older Scotsman rebuttled. “I just don’t need to flatter them quite so blatantly. As some of us do,” he coughed lightly.

Megan studiously ignored the men and Jules bit her tongue. “Go kill me some Vikings.”

“Viking Death!” Megan yelled out suddenly.

“Hmmm.. what to call this pagan who is about to get skinned alive….” Joe tapped his chin. “Ah! I know… “Orev waited, weeping like a newborn infant as they slowly-“”

“I demand likeness rights!” Orev interrupted the story.

“Bring on blood and violence!” Jules exclaimed, breaking up the two men. Joe started to mutter burning arrows, and curling smoke and the stench of burning flesh.

Megan sat down next to Jules, a knowing grin on her face as she pulled out her own laptop, opening a blank document.

“What exactly are you going to do with that?” Jules raised an eyebrow.

“I can write something, and I bet any money, that those two will say what I write.” She grinned as she started to type, her fingers flying across the keys.

“Look, Joe.” chimed in the ruggedly handsome Orev from the corner, looking briefly up from his playlist. Jules snorted and quickly clapped her hands over her mouth.

“Sorry, Orev,” replied Joe.. “I ‘like’ you and all.. Just not in the way you want me to…”

“I would stop there,” Jules suggested, try not to cough up her coffee from all the laughing she was attempting to keep down. “This has the potential to turn ugly,… for them.”

“I will simply have to console myself with the fact that I am vastly prettier than you,” Orev pronounced.

Megan and Jules looked at each other. “I didn’t write that.”

“I have to say,…” Jules started, not sure whether to shake her head or not. “Men should Not be pretty.”

“Exactly!” Joe stuck his finger up in the air in triumph. “Again, I win!”

“You won a long time ago, Joe, you know this,” Jules leaned back against the couch, holding the mug of still, somehow, warm coffee in her hand. “But that does not mean that you two should stop.” She grinned, mostly to herself. “It gives me pleasure.”

“Geeky pleasure.” Megan threw in.

“That was bad,” Jules snorted.

A Trip Down Memory Lane

December 10th, 2010

I told myself two hours ago that I was going to turn off my brain and stop working. My brain had other ideas. I had also told myself that this week I would blog about something not radio station related. (By the way, if you haven’t heard the news yet, the station’s website is now live and we’re hiring.) However, my brain can be a real brat at times. To get it to shut up, I decided to listen to music and start formulated Auto-DJ playlists.

I opened up my music player, put it on shuffle and began the process of created playlists and thinking more about the format of my shows. Third song in, this began to play (if you are viewing this in an RSS reader, you may need to visit the site to listen):

:

A little bit of back story. Right before my final Geeky Pleasures’ broadcast, Antonio emailed me this audio file and asked me to play it during my show. I had no time to listen to it prior. Let’s just say, I broke down in tears, live on camera for my audience to see. It has almost been one year  (December 18, 2009) since my final broadcast and the curtain came to a close. Interesting thing, Antonio was one of the first people I hired for The Force 925. I had completely forgotten about his comment about us being together again. I think the timing of it all is pretty neat. It may have taken a year to rebuild my dream but it is done.

I really needed to hear this tonight. My week has been hell; from learning that someone took our original domain name (as well as other just really malicious acts), to being a week behind schedule, to too many things that I care to mention because I’m sure to break down into tears of frustration once again. For the most part, this job is awesome. However, there are certain really not awesome parts of it that tend to hugely overshadow the positives.  The above really helped remind me of why it is that I do what I do.

I may not always like people.  Not because I don’t actually like people, I care for people very deeply. I just don’t “get” them, even if I can logically dissect how they’ve reached certain states of mind and emotion. They may baffle me beyond comprehension as I find their reactions to some things bizarre. More often than not, I may feel quiet alien and as if I don’t belong among the normals. And as I do come to emotion from a very different spot than most people, this makes remaining not frustrated and being comfortable around people difficult. However, aside from the creative gratification I get from doing this job, there is the gratification of making some form of weird difference and helping people.

Somehow, I manage to create a family atmosphere among my staff members. I end up being the mix of mother, friend, camp counsellor, staff psychologist, mediator, shoulder to cry on, plus more, in addition to wearing the boss lady hat. And like all families, there are fights, squabbles, moments of wanting to smack each other and tell each other off. But it doesn’t mean that we don’t care for each other and don’t want the best for each other. Stumbling upon this audio file reminded me of that.

It reminded me, that despite some people not wanting me to succeed, what I do matters. And now, instead of crying tears of frustration, I’m shedding tears of happy remembrance, tears as a result of struggling for a very long year, tears of relief, some tears of grief over things left behind and tears of “Thank Bob!”

Thanks for taking this trip down memory lane with me.

Is It January Yet?

November 28th, 2010

I know damn well it isn’t. Jeebus, it isn’t even December yet. But I am chomping at the bit to get back on air in the New Year. A part of me worries that people are going to get sick of me talking about it but HOLY JUMPING SHEEP SHIT, I’M EXCITED!

I feel like a bit of a superhero this week. The station was in danger of falling 2 weeks behind in schedule. Talk about stress when there is an unexpected happenstance, which really threatens to bugger things up. But I seem to work my best when under pressure. After my brain went through its series of, “OH FFS! There is no way we’ll be able to launch on the 3rd if this happens!” thoughts, it quickly jumped into warp speed and came up with a brilliant idea, which would put the Kobayashi Maru to shame. Somehow, I managed to get the station from threatening to be dangerously behind 2 weeks in schedule to being ahead 3 days of schedule. At least 1 portion of it.

The website will not launch on December 1st as originally scheduled. This means the “open to the public” hiring process will have to be cut by however many days delay there is in that. There is no fix for this as it has to do with a funding hiccough and not anything I can control. But everything else is right on schedule and running tickity-boo.  Right now, I am at the point where I’m having to wait on others to get certain things to me. I don’t do well in the “hurry up and wait” game. Especially when I get into a good working rhythm, only to have it suddenly halted. Up side to this, managing to fit 2 weeks of work into 3 days means that when I have to start on the layout and design of the next issue of The Vaccine Times in a couple of days, my time will be much easier to manage.

I’m also chomping at the bit to announce one of the people I’ve hired to do a show and be one of the Music Directors. Sitting on this one is extremely difficult. We’ve been wanting to work with each other in this type of capacity for some time now, so to finally have the opportunity is really awesome. I’m quite excited to work with all of the staff that we’ve hired up to this point. Something would be odd if I weren’t, as they’ve all been hand selected.

I’m excited about the interviews. I have a list of 7 people/groups that I plan on interviewing in the next year. I need to get that list to 12. I don’t have to do an interview once a month, but it would be cool if I were able to swing it. I’m also really really really looking forward to receiving submissions for the Geeky Pleasures theme song.

Hell, I’m excited about every thing! I’ve had a few moments of wanting to blow things up. But they haven’t lasted long. So far, this experience has been a lot better than my previous experience running a radio station. The other experience wasn’t bad per se, it just lacked a few flavours and dynamics that I need in order to be at my best.

A part of me was worried that taking on this project would cause my lupus to flare up even more. I’ve been having the worst lupus flare for over a year now. It hasn’t been this bad in about 4 years. This flare had started to subside shortly before I was asked to come aboard this project. I knew there would be added stress and stress is one of the biggest things to exacerbate and cause flares. So far though, I seem to be running pretty smoothly. I’m not at 100% form (that never happens). I think it safe to say I’m running at about 50% capacity at the moment. I was running at about 10-20% for way too long. Imagine how superpower-ish I’d be if all of my lupus symptoms suddenly disappeared and I was at 100% once more? I think the reason why my health has been staying pretty level is because I am experiencing a good kind of stress. I’m feeling alive, useful, exhilarated and invigorated.

Let’s just hope it keeps up!

Holy Crap and Macaroni Sticks!

November 19th, 2010

(Yeah, I don’t know what the title means either. I thought, “Hey brain. You need to come up with a clever title for a blog. My brain replied, “Holy crap and macaroni sticks! I’m tired! I can’t think of anything else clever. And then I said, “Well, that will work.)

Ever since I was asked to help start a new radio station and be the Assistant General Manager and Programming Director, my brain has been a whirling dervish of ideas. My sleep has suffered greatly as a result. I keep waking up, many times throughout the night, with all of these crazy yet brilliant ideas. I’ve had a week chock-full of brainstorming, planning, hiring, scheduling, emailing, acquiring the necessary things to start building the station’s website, plus so much more.

I tweeted earlier this week, “Between Geeky Pleasures +2, @nerdsinbabeland @WarsVsTrek @VaccineTimes @LupusMagazine and the radio station, I have enough on my plate, yes?” Now that the week is over, I can definitely say my plate is completely full. And I couldn’t be happier! I am so bloody knackered. But it is so worth it. I’m back in my pocket! I have back this thing, which I’ve mentioned a few times, that I felt was lacking. And first I thought this thing was just something to do. But no matter how many new projects I took on, it was never enough. Something was missing and no amount of “more projects than should be legal” filled this wide, gaping, black hole of emptiness.

I don’t know what it is about this job that fills this “thing” that has been missing. Maybe it is because I get to use all of my wonderful skills for this job, not just a select couple here and there as the task may require. Maybe it is because I get to entertain people again in real time and share with them things I really enjoy in a more interactive environment. And thinking about the latter actually perplexes me a bit as I’m not a sociable person. Seriously, I’m not. Get me in a room in meat space where there is more than a handful of people, especially if I don’t know them, and I clam up. I feel awkward and feel panicked and as if I’m going to vomit and a whole bunch of other things. Yet, I am great if I have to play a character on stage.

Maybe the reason why I love this job so much is because I wish I could be comfortable in my own skin in meat space. I really love to share with people but it takes me a long time to come out of my shell. And this job allows me to share the things I love and vice versa, in a real time, social setting with a bit of a psychological force field, if you will. I can sit down with the people, who are gracious enough to allow me to entertain them for a few hours, without any form of delay in the sharing process.

I’ve had all these ideas of who I want to interview on the Geeky Pleasures portion of my shows. I’m really excited about that part as well. I had a whole schwackload of people lined up before I had to pull Geeky Pleasures from the air. This left me a little bit disappointed. And not because I saw it as any type of failure or something that “needed” to be done but because of how much fun it is to sit down with someone and just geek out over whatever it is we want to geek out over. I suppose it goes back to the whole ” I wish I could share in meat space without feeling yucky, however this is a nice surrogate” thing. And now that it is a year later, I have an even bigger list of people I cannot wait to virtually sit across from. And I feel I am much better equipped to do so.

Have I said yet how excited I am!! I’M EXCITED! Like really, really, really excited. Obnoxiously so. It is so nice to feel as if you are back at home and, even better, to be back in your pocket.

There are a few things I am not looking forward to. Such as having to almost completely plug back in. I’ll have to be available all the time I’m at my desk via Skype. I really do not miss being messaged about something every 2 seconds. I’m not looking forward to part of the interview process once we open the jobs to the general public, instead of the invite only as is now. And heaven help any poor sap who asks me questions such as, “What’s a system tray?” or “What’s a control panel?” Seriously, if you do not know how to find your control panel, let alone if you don’t know what one is (I’m not shitting you), or if you do not know what your system tray is, don’t apply. I’ll not have it this time around.

Thankfully, I’m working with someone who believes (as I do) that quality comes before quantity. If we have to fill spots with the autodj until we can find competent people, then so be it. I’ll be damned if I hire someone just for the sake of filling a spot as I did at the station that shall not be named. It always ended up being more of a headache than it was worth. And that really makes it so much better. Having someone that for the most part, is on the same page as you. Someone that has the same vision as you have. Sure, I’m not paying the bills. However, this is just as much baby as it is the owners. And the odd things that we don’t automatically see eye to eye on, we eventually find a middle ground. It is really nice to be able to work in that type of creative environment. And perhaps a lot of the reasons why we are able to work so well together is because I’m the one who hired/trained him at the station that shall not be named. We’ve already forged that great relationship.

I’m happy. Really happy. Professionally, I’m the most content I’ve been in a year. My plate is sufficiently full. I’m feeling more than adequately fulfilled. I’m back in my pocket.

Holy crap and macaroni sticks!

In Which I Set Myself and Every One Else Up for Disappointment but SQUEE!

November 12th, 2010

What a horrible blog title for something that I’m REALLY REALLY REALLY excited about it. But truth is, if this falls through with a fiery crash, I know I’ll be disappointed. And I think it is safe to say, others will be disappointed for me as well. Especially as this is something I’ve been yearning for, for almost a year now. But there is a very slight chance it may not happen and I’m the type that prepares for all scenarios. And with this situation, even if I prepare myself for the worst, I know a small part of me will be disappointed because it is something I have wanted for a very long time. What is this thing? I’m going to be back on air, bitches!! I mean… I’m going to be back on air, people! And there is more!

Before anyone asks, the answer is, YES! So that is all we have to say about that.

Some things will be different and some things will be the same as before. One thing that will be different is that this will be online radio only, not online and FM as before. But you know what, I really don’t care. There is a lot you can do with online that you cannot do with FM. And I don’t have to worry about bloody censoring my music. Another thing that will be different, I will not be taken advantage of. It is nice to be truly valued and in this situation, I know that I am. I know that I am not just getting lip service to drag even more thankless work out of me.

Things that will be the same include that I will be the Assistant General Manager and the Program Director plus have a Geeky Pleasures radio show (complete with Ustream chat but new account) and other shows. I will still have a heavy emphasis on independent musicians.  My monthly featured musician will go back once again to both on-air and Geeky Pleasures’ website. I’ll be in charge of hiring, training, scheduling and firing (if need be) of personalities, plus other operational things. BONUS: I will be setting up and maintaining the website plus in charge of all other tech things.

The only “drawback” is until a handful of sponsors come on board, the majority of the staff will be unpaid interns. For now, the person who is setting up the radio station and who asked me if I’d come on board and help, will be paying all expenses out of pocket (Yes, even that expense. Told you, I was truly appreciated and valued here).

I had thought at first that it would be at least til the new year before any form of ball would start to roll. After all, I was approached about this only yesterday. However, things seem to be moving much quicker than I anticipated. YAY! The website host will be contacted tomorrow. Names for the station have been discussed. Staff is starting to be gathered. Formats and general framework is being sorted. Theoretically, I could start working on the website over the next week (once a couple other details are worked out). Knowing how quickly I can get things done (GO GO GADGET OCD!), we could be on air within 2-4 weeks.

At first, I can tell you there will be a lot of auto-player airtime. It will be awhile before sponsors get firmed up. It will take some work to get volunteer street teams and such organized. It will take some work interviewing, hiring and training new staff. There is a lot of hard work ahead of me in the weeks to come. But this work is so damn rewarding. The prospect of this has me so very excited. I have missed it more than I thought I had. I didn’t realize how much I missed it until yesterday and the plan started to get formed.

Other things that need to get sorted is WHEN I will be on air. Myself and the GM will get first pick. I know my listener base is spread far across the globe. So finding a time that is suitable for most people will take a bit of work. I’ll most likely have a poll or something at some point.

I really hope this doesn’t crash and burn. This means that I get to put a lot of projects back on the front burner instead of the back burner. This means the ability to do more interviews. This means the ability to entertain folk in real time and be entertained in return. This means… more than I think I can articulate at the moment.

So here’s to hoping that it all works out for the best. Expect a lot of random SQUEEs from me in the next little while as more and more details get sorted and this thing becomes a reality instead of just ideas.

Setec Astronomy

August 25th, 2010

You all may hate me after this post. And by hate I mean, you really love me but you are getting even more frustrated with my secrets. Trust me, I’m frustrated with them as well. I swear, if I don’t get to unleash some of the SQUEE, and soon, I’m going to implode in ways that are both ferocious and disgustingly disturbing. It was suggested to me after I wrote my last blog, to write in code. Well, if you actually knew me (and I don’t mean that in a condescending sort of way), you know that would require me completely changing the way I think and process information.

I’m the person who has a hard time with rhetorics. I’m the person who is honest to a fault. The ability to be dishonest is something I need to work on. (Not really. I’m proud of my brutal honesty.) I’m the person who saw a video on Facebook, almost shared it, but was going to add “There is no way she accepted millions of friends requests! Sure she may have received millions, but you can only have so many thousand friends.” But then my brain quickly stopped me. Because the message of the video was to be careful of what person information you share and if you are going to accept strangers on Facebook, make sure your home address is not listed. (The video was about some girl who was brutally raped and murdered after adding the wrong person on Facebook). If I had posted my automatic, “Well that is just not possible and it is a complete over-exaggeration” literal/ skeptical/ critical/ scientific thoughts, I would have come off as cold-hearted and unfeeling. The message of the video was quite valid, but the way my brain works, it automatically goes to the logic of the situation and not the feeling and/or intent. And there was another instance where a comment was left somewhere and my first reaction was to correct a timezone remark. I suppose no harm is done by miscalculating 1 hour. I’ve had to stop reading the comments on that blog because my brain keeps screaming, “That is incorrect!” But then I’d come off as a know-it-all (which isn’t my intent), instead of some person who’s brain works in very peculiar ways. (I swear, I’ll get to the Setec Astronomy soon).

Another suggestion to help me uncork some of my need to share but not quite knowing how to go about it or what to write, was to write about gay rights. Well, I want to. But I am conflicted. In order for me to write about my views on gay rights beyond just saying “I believe they should have equal rights and that is that”, I’d have to talk about religion and my religious upbringing. Yeah… I don’t talk about religion in public. But under the circumstances it may not be a bad thing as it was my church who taught me gays should have equal rights. Whodda thunk? Organized religion being supportive of gays? Some may say, “Only in Canada.” So maybe I will write that post. I just need to ponder it a bit more.

Where was I going with this post? Oh yeah… I have some super awesometastic sooper sekrit things happening right now. I’ve told my Alfred. (Now, that is code! But in a way it isn’t as some know of whom I am talking and if you’ve read my blog long enough, he’s been mentioned before.) And after I’ve shared my moments of squee with him, he is nice enough to put on his logic hat and ask, “Jules, are you getting paid for this?” To which I sigh and respond, “No.” To which he sighs and responds, “Jules…” To which I smile, attempt to contain the giddy and say, “I know. I’ve thought the same things you are thinking. BUT this is giving me more exposure. I get to have a voice outside of my own content. It will give (insert things here) more exposure and awareness. It will give me more credibility. It is for a cause that is near and dear to me (or it is something I quite enjoy, brings me pleasure to participate in and makes me happy). And with all the extra, unsolicited exposure and writing opportunities, hopefully it leads to something paying soon. Because we both know, I really need the money. And even so when I started on all of this just over a year ago, money was the furthest thing from my mind, I am in desperate need of it right now. I’ve thought this through. I know I’ve said a million times that the next time someone asks me to create for them, I’ll ask them ‘How much?’ But these are really special circumstances.” And then he agrees (even so I’m sure he is still shaking his head on the inside but he is very nice and supportive and only wants what is best for me) and says, “That is really groovy! I’m happy for you.” And that is when I cannot contain my happy any longer and exclaim, “ISN’T IT THOUGH?!? This is so totally awesome! I can’t wait until I can share it with every one!”

And I really can’t. It is bloody KILLING me! So, I think I’ve come up with a happy compromise. Hopefully this will accomplish a few things. 1) I can release some of my SQUEE pressure that has left me feeling as if I am drowning and being suffocated by a whirlpool of ecstatic (if that is possible). 2) I don’t divulge the things I really cannot right now. If I were to divulge them, I think future possibilities will turn from many to zero in short order. Yet, I divulge enough for others to be happy for me (even so I think you’ll want to kill me at the same time for a variety of reasons). 3) Fill you in on some things that I feel are safe to share since they have been discussed (even so mostly quietly) on Twitter and other places online. And we all know, once it is online it really isn’t a secret anymore. 4) I don’t come off as some self-promoting, pompous asshat.  I’m afraid some of this may teeter on the edge of name dropping and name dropping isn’t all that kosher. Hopefully I can find a balance here that works for everyone.

So, without further ado:

Secrets That Aren’t Really Secrets: (click on clips below to visit the sites that I mention)

1) There is this awesome site/ service/ blogging tool call clp.ly. I’ve been part of the beta since it first launched. I’m affectionately known as “The Number 1 customer.” I adore them (both the people who work there and the service). And it is safe to say, they adore me. They used my site to demo their service at a tech conference thing a few weeks ago. It felt so unbelievable cool when they asked my permission to use Geeky Pleasures for their demo (and that same day, I awarded their service Geek of the Week). They’ve used Geeky Pleasures in a number of blog posts and were nice enough to feature it prominently on their press page. All of this I’ve shared via Twitter and Facebook but what I haven’t share yet – I was asked if I wanted to be a guest blogger. I said I’d love to. Now I just have to figure out what the hell it is I’m going to write!

Clipped from: clp.ly (share this clip)

Clipped from: clp.ly (share this clip)

Clipped from: clp.ly (share this clip)

If you do any type of blogging and content sharing, then I highly recommend you check out clp.ly.

Now moving on.

2) There is this site. It is still in its infancy. It is dedicated to one of the greatest nerd/geek fights of all time: Which is better: Star Wars or Star Trek? I also featured this site for Geek of the Week. I’ve gotten to know both creators through various different things.

Well, I was asked if I wanted to write for the site from time to time. Are you kidding? Writing about why Star Trek is so much better than Star Wars? Being able to have epic debates, not having to worry about language, throwing it down like never before? Of course! And I can see some people who read this taking a bit of an issue (especially some family members). Especially as I’m helping someone out and for nothing.

However, how can I turn down another space to write about things that cause me to have juicy geekasms? And besides, I want to help them out. If someone didn’t give me a hand when I was a nobody Program Director with a radio show called Geeky Pleasures, I wouldn’t have had the moderate success that I have been able to enjoy over the past little bit. And here is the thing, when those people did what they did for me, it wasn’t because I was seeking any type of “fame”. I just wanted to geek out and have fun. I had no expectations for anything. And the same goes for this. They asked me because they thought it would be fun for me and not to get themselves further ahead. Now, the results may end up being something quite different.

Oh, and they’ll be interviewing me for something. It will be quite unlike anything I’ve ever done before or they’ve done before. There will be some things that are quite familiar (like geeking out over things) but… well… you’ll just have to wait and see.

I think that is it for the things that are secret but not really which I feel are safe to share.

Sooper Sekrit Things

I’ll try to keep this short and sweet. (I realize I am now over 1600 words. I thought this was going to be a short blog when I started. Go figure.)

1) I wrote a review a little while ago. (Sorry, I can’t tell you what review I’m speaking to, otherwise it may totally blow the secret). I was asked my permission for it to be used for something that really is beyond amazing and feature it in a way that… well… to put it plainly… I was so very humbled and touched that they want to use it and for this purpose. I responded to the email with, “Quote whatever you want”, but what I really wanted to say was, “FUCK YES!” And tears formed in my eyes, my soul was touched and I was deeply humbled.

2, 3, 4) The Lupus Awareness Virtual Art Gallery is going to get some really nice press. I emailed some place asking if they’d feature the October project in their next issue. They said they would be more than happy to. They said they were very happy I contacted them. They had read my review of Love Simple and listened to my interview with Patrizia Hernandez and are very happy that I made contact with them. This led to them asking me if I wouldn’t mind writing for their magazine. (Before you ask, as I stated above… the answer is no.) SQUEE! Of course! Be able to write about Lupus to a more focused audience… I’d be crazy to say no. Then this subsequently led to my book also being featured.

(Seeing as their are a number of Lupus related magazines and such, I feel it safe to disclose this much information. This is really completely awesome. I’m not sure if you can truly comprehend how much it means to me that my voice is one they want to hear and feel others will want to hear as well. In the next few days, after the press release goes out, I can say for what magazine.)

Oh man, there is more. There is so much more. But I think this is the extent of what I can safely share at this moment in time. Sure, none of it is paying monetarily but what it is paying in other ways more than compensates. And all of these things are building blocks. All of these have the potential to lead to bigger things. All of these allow me to use my various voices. And maybe, just maybe, next time someone asks me to write, it will be a paying job. Because we all know, I’m in desperate need at the moment.

Thanks once again for sharing with me my moments of squee.

In Which Kid2 And I Share A Geekasm

May 28th, 2010

Today was full of awesome and win. And I thought an experience I shared last night with Kid2 wouldn’t be able to be topped for awhile.

Last night, The Hoff somehow came up in conversation. I decided to share some of my most favourite cheesy Hoff music videos with Kid2. And he loved them almost as much as I do. It was a pretty fun thing to share with him. It was nice to see him share the same enthusiasm that I do for things that are just a little bit off. I keep trying to figure out if I am a bad influence or a good influence on my children as I expose them to things children normally have to come upon on their own or that in “normal” households, they cannot share the joy with their parents. I thought it would be awhile before an equally awesome event would take place. And then earlier today, was The Awesome Hour.

Wil Wheaton is currently at the Phoenix Comic Con. He has this thing that he does at conventions called The Awesome Hour. He blogged about it yesterday and I called him a tease for not sharing with his readers the epiphany he had come up with that would later become The Awesome Hour. Then today, just as it was about to start, he tweeted that it would be streamed live over this thing called the internets. This made a happy Jules a very happy Jules indeed.

Just as it was starting, Kid2 came whizzing into the house (as he does) with a quick “Hi!” and “Bye! Going to go whiz through Splinter Cell again!” Then this streak of a child went flashing down the corridor. I called out, “Hey! You! Not so fast! Wil is speaking. Do you want to come and listen with me?” He replied with, “I’ve heard Wil speak, mom. Maybe another time”, as he began to turn to make his exit. Before he could get a quarter of the way there, I informed him that Wil is currently speaking live at a convention and we can listen to it live! Online! We don’t even have to leave the comfort of being pantless to attend a convention that is 2620.012 km away! He found this idea to be pretty intriguing and pulled up a chair beside me. (Isn’t living in the future awesome!)

Near the beginning of his talk, Wil was speaking about the Atari 2600. Holy jumping jellybeans! If only you could see Kid2’s face as it lit up as Wil spoke about gaming. And to make it even more awesome, about gaming from the 80s. Kid2 loves the 80s. There are times I think he knows more about the 80s than I do and I grew up in the them. Kid2 wasn’t even a glimmer in his dad’s eye at that time. It really was this super cool thing to watch as Kid2’s face was pointing towards me. However, he was looking passed me as he cocked his left ear to listen ever so intently to the words Wil spoke.

As Kid2 looks passed me, I found myself staring back at him while the tones of Wil’s voice faded into the background. I watched the sparkle in his eyes, his mouth curl with half smiles. I watched him fist pump the air, only to be jostled back into reality when Kid2 would exclaim, “O.M.G! MOM! This is freaking rad!” and I would have turn my ear back to what was being said so that I could comment and have a geeky conversation with my son. We laughed at how Wil has thrown around “that’s what she said” with his boys, as it is a common occurrence in this house. We had discussions about all the games Wil mentioned as they are some of Kid2’s favourites. We talked about how Wil’s kids are weird since they would tell Wil he’s weird when really he isn’t (clarification: my children call me weird all the time. But in this house it is a compliment as my boys think I am pretty damn cool). I smiled every time Kid2 would comment about how similar Wil and I are.

That actually use to be a running joke with my ex. I would say something or talk about something, only for Wil to tweet almost the exact same thing or blog about it shortly afterwards. He would joke that Wil and I were long lost twins even so we are 3.5 years apart. Something about a tear in the space-time continuum messing with when I came into existence as you hear and see me now. And this is the major reason why I enjoy Wil the way I do. Not because of some silly crush that formed when I was 10. But because we are the same “people”.

Our lives developed very similarly. An example of that is when he was 25ish he had two boys, the oldest being 5ish. When I was 25ish, I had to two boys, my oldest being 5. We also share A LOT of the same geeky/nerdy obsessions. We have the same warped sense of humour. And we are basically the same age. Even so I didn’t literally grow up with him in the sense where we grew up as friends and hanging out etc, I did grow up with him and he was the first geeky person for me to be acquainted with in some manner. It was nice having someone similar to me having the same experiences I would have but a couple years before me so that I knew what was to come.

So, of course it makes me happy that he is one of the people Kid2 looks up to. When I was Kid2’s age, I was the lone geek/nerd. I wasn’t teased for it by my peers. They always seemed to just accept it. But I had no one to really look up to or to relate with. I had no models in the media to let me know that it was cool and okay. I had to tread these waters alone. It wasn’t until adulthood and the internets that I was able to find my tribe and by that time, I was too old for role models.

And even so I think my boys have a pretty cool geeky role model in me, it comforts me that they get to have role models outside of me. They were born into this geeky family which my generation had to go through a lot of teasing and pain to create and have it be accepted. It makes me smile with a stupid grin that my once childhood crush is now one of Kid2’s biggest role models. (Don’t tell Wil. He gets a little self-conscious when he has to think about these things.)

The Awesome Hour was almost over and Kid2 decided he didn’t want to listen to anymore of the Q&A and really needed to tear through Splinter Cell for like the billionth time. He went into the living room and played his game. But every now and then I would hear a big cheer as Wil would mention things such as, people who think girls shouldn’t like these things are stupid. There was an even louder cheer (and I swear I heard a fist pump) when Wil said geek girls are hawt (and a “Mom, Wil thinks you’re hawt! They don’t get much geekier than you, mom!). And an “all right!” when Wil said he was left handed (Kid2, even so he is ambi, decides to use his left more than his right).

I have to say The Awesome Hour was pretty damn awesome. And not because of what Wil had to say (don’t get me wrong he is a great speaker and very funny) but because I got to geekasm with my 11 year old son. We may have been geekasming over different things, as our heads were in different places, but I cannot think of a better way to spend time with my son. Thank you, internets. Thank you, future. Thank you, Wil.

In Which I Beat Temptation And I Get Another Song! SQUEE!

April 4th, 2010

OMG! I am totally squee’ing at the moment! THIS IS AWESOME!! Holy shit! Seriously DUDES! And if you don’t squee once I am done with this, there is something seriously wrong with you! You will really want to read past the back story to hear the TOTALLY AWESOME AND WIN!

Okay, a bit of a back story. Lent just ended. And I do something every year for Lent. Not because a church tells me too, but for my own spiritual needs. Some of the hardest Lents included the year I gave up chocolate. Another hard Lent was the year I gave up sex. This year I gave up innuendo and double-entendre. I could still talk technically about sex but nothing that could fall under “that what s/he said!” I have to say this was harder than the years I gave up chocolate and sex, combined.

Once Lent was over, I had a huge release as I tweeted the following:

WOOT! It is Easter! Time to celebrate a guy who was nail with wood, rose to the occasions and came 3 days later. May he come again.

Lent was long and hard. It tried to beat me. But like a trooper, I rode it for 1104 hours right till the very end. I came through it like a champ. I would like to thank everyone for making it a group event. Everyone who watched and participated. It would not have been nearly as enjoyable had you not all played your part. Thank you.

Man, that release was soooooooooooo good.

And then shortly after:

OH: He has come close to spilling a few times but there were always warnings. This time it just came without warning.

But here is the really awesome part. There is this really cool lady. Her name is Denise Hudson (@RangerDenni). I got to know her through Song Fu and TMA. She told me she was going to write me a song as a reward for Lent. And it is seriously bloody brilliant! And to make it very fitting, she had the amazing and wonderful Joe ‘Covenant’ Lamb (@JoeCovenant) be a part of it. Joe was my #1 temptation during Lent. And I even co-wrote part of it! She included a limerick that I wrote about Joe one day during a JoeCast! And she included so many “me” things and inside jokes in it. It really is just brilliant and I can’t stop squee’ing! I am including it for your listening pleasure. I can’t stop smiling!

In Which Jules Rejoins Us With Her Bad Self – Denise Hudson ft Joe ‘Covenant’ Lamb and special guest

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“In Which Jules Rejoins Us All With Her Bad Self”
Lyrics BY: Denise Hudson / Julia Sherred / Joe “Covenant” Lamb

(featuring Joe “Covenant” Lamb & special guest)

Happy Easter to Julia Sherred
Who handcuffed herself to the bed
of denial and sacrifice
till April third at midnight
counting the sec’s(!) till the END!

Now Jules made a promise to God
or to Great Aunty Maude
or The Spaghetti Monster or to Bob or whoever you like
the point was she would strike
from her mind all the semblance of bawd

Now Jules is the queen of things geeky
But the boys and the girls they are quite cheeky
tempting lively young Jules
to PM with her rules
and I wondered if she’d go get freaky

Innuendo was filling her eyes
She looked desperately to the skies
Praying Polly’d send rain
to cool off her pain
“That’s What She Said’s” were swarming like flies

[interlude consisting of a blended array of samples from the hysterical Count video that made me pee on myself, that Mystic Cat thing, and a certain song from our pre-teen years that Joe overplays at casts that he thinks gets women in their thirties all misted up… and which I play in a motet like fashion on period instruments fashioned from various VSTs]

What could keep poor Jules afloat?
Could a stirring bridge be a lifeboat?
Because just screaming “LENT”
isn’t paying the rent
and so on an unrelated note …

[Enter Joe]

“Now just because Den is the author of this
And the words have come out of her head
There’s a big control freak
In this Queen of the Geek
So here’s words from Dear Ms. Sherred”

{ENTER LYRICS BY JULIA SHERRED, which Joe feels necessary to change and stuff, because he’s annoying}

There once was a guy named Joe
Whom I think everybody should know
He banged on his bodhran
All the while he sang
And Joecast is the name of his show

REPEAT IN A ROUSING ROUND:

There once was a guy named Joe
Whom I think everyone should know
He banged on his bodhran
All the while he sang
And Joecast is the name of his show

Jules will go into Joecast
And I think we will all have a blast
As she lays down some smack
That’ll give heart attack
Cuz we’ve all seen how long SHE can last ….

The TMA Podcast was WIN!
You could not be derailed by your friends
Not even passiontide
could pull you aside
As you pushed all the way through the end …

So praise be to the Holies on High
And his hotness Sir Optimus Prime!
As you’ve reached the apex
You can talk about sex
In whichever which way you can find

Since I cannot mail you a taco
down the hall to the headmasters we’ll go
Every slip of the tongue
In our orgy of fun
TMA smacks for chat innuendo

So cheers to a successful lent
We imagine you’re feeling quite spent
May the gal from BC
Give an orgasmic squee!!!!!!!!!
You did it! You did it!

….. #andedric