Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Yesterday's Negatives and Positives.

You ever have one of those mornings where it feels like someone was beating you with a big stick while you slept?  Yeah, it's one of those mornings for me.  And I didn't do anything yesterday that would warrant feeling like I'd been thrashed.

I think maybe it's the sudden drop in temperatures here combined with how totally discombobulated my body is from past thrashings.  It was 87 on Saturday and 66 on Sunday.  Bleh.  That's sure to make me feel like I've been run over by a subcompact. 

Part of it could be that I spent the majority of yesterday hunched over either my keyboard or a book.  Hunched over is not a good way to treat your body.

Oh, I did take a walk yesterday.  Which could be part of it, too, since I'm out of shape after the 7 weeks of not walking. 

On a positive note, I am so happy the temps are finally dropping.  We're still a bit above normal for this time of year, but it's way better than in the upper eighties.  I feel so much better in cooler temperatures - once my body acclimates.  Plus, lower temperatures make for better fishing.

Also, I'm happy to have spent yesterday hunched over my keyboard.  I wasn't writing, but I was working and it feels good to be productive at something - especially when the writing isn't cooperating.  And hunched over a book is always a good place to be. 

Lastly, the walk was gorgeous.  The day was cool.  The trees are starting to turn.  The birds are flitting all over and a breeze was blowing, making neat shadows on the ground.  So we walked farther than I probably should've.  :shrug:  I'd do it again and my damn ankle can just get over it.

See?  Negatives and Positives.  It's all how you look at it.  I'm still achy, but now I'm happier about the reasons. 

What are some negatives and positives for you today?

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Sunday Update - Week 41

Hidey-ho.  It's Sunday again.  And I'm like where did the week go?

It sure as hell didn't go to much writing.  Early Grave is stalled again - this time at 56237.  I just can't seem to get this ball rolling again.  And then yesterday a little voice in my head said, "You should've written this from Lynn's POV, not Ned's".  And I ran screaming.  After I came back, I had a mental debate with myself and considered the idea from various angles.  The decision?  It's in Ned's POV and it's staying there.  I mean, I'll put more Lynn in and everything, but the main POV in this has to be Ned's or if doesn't work.  Plus, rewriting this whole damn book would take a NaNoWriMo level of effort and I'd really like to conserve those for new books.

Speaking of NaNo... I don't know if I'm going to do anything for it this year.  I have other things I should be concentrating on next month.

Reading... I've been reading one book and I'm not done yet.  Maybe today.  It's a 400+ page SF and it's taking time.

I didn't do a fishing report yesterday because there really wasn't much to talk about.  Caught some little panfish, but nothing to blow your skirt up.

In other work, I got the direction I needed to do those spreadsheets right.  (At least I hope I got them right.  The big boss will tell me if I didn't.)  It's not hard, just a little laborious.  It'll all go faster once I get some of this stuff automatized in my head.

I'm getting the genealogy bug again.  I did a little googling, but I'm not ready to commit to a month of it (which is what I have to do once I pay for Ancestry.com).  I did find the actual name for my mom's great aunt's twin sister who died at birth, so that's something.  And where first cousin twice removed Fred is buried.  I wish I could read German, so I could access all those records to complete Dad's side of the tree.  Bleh.

I've been picking up acorns for the deer.  So many acorns this year.  Oberon - the fairy oak in my front yard - is dumping them by the bucketful all over the yard.  I predict dozens of seedlings in my gardens next spring.  Ugh.  Anyway, it's good exercise.  Or something.  I guess.

Okay, that's it for me.  Not sure what this week will hold.  What's up with you?


Thursday, October 12, 2017

Thursday This n That

I made what I thought was incredibly witty joke about Hurricane Ophelia headed for the Moors yesterday morning.  I laughed.  Hubs laughed.  Then I realized I had made a critical error in my Shakespeare.  Desdemona not Ophelia.  Derp.  Thankfully, I caught myself before I posted the wit online.  In my defense, I had only had one cup of coffee.  One should not attempt Shakespearean jokes when one is caffeine deficient.  (In his defense, Hubs was also low on coffee and also he laughs at most of my jokes - even when he isn't listening.)

Laughter really does make a marriage better.  Even when stuff gets bad, we can usually find something to laugh about.  (Good laughter - not at each other's expense.  Ever.)  Thirteen and a half years and going strong.

I saw a pair of birds while I was out at the lake on Tuesday.  They flew over me making an unholy racket similar to that of a Great Blue Heron.  Gull shaped silhouette with gull coloring against the gray sky, but about the size of an Osprey (larger than typical gull wingspan).  Still not sure what the hell they were.  :shrug:

I read a book earlier this year that I really loved, but I didn't have it in the budget to buy the sequel.  Joy of joys, the author put book two as free yesterday.  Huzzah!  And I feel really bad about not paying for it, so I'll be chatting it up after I read it.  Fingers crossed it's as good as the first book.

If you've ever tried my cake cookie recipe, try this... Make the recipe according to directions (box cake mix, 2 eggs, 1.2 cup veg oil, whatever additions you like).  Stir it all together and then instead of making drop cookies, smush it all into the bottom of a greased 8x10" pan.  Bake at 350F for about 20-25 minutes, or until cooked through in the center.  Cut into bars.  I used chocolate cake and peanut butter chips.  OMG, so good served warm with ice cream. 

Okay, that's it for me.  What have you got?

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

DNF

DNF... Did Not Finish.  Which is pretty sad, if you ask me.  I hate not finishing books - especially ones I paid for.  Bleh.

I'm pretty good about finishing the books I start.  I think that's because I'm pretty good at picking the books I grab to read.  But every once in a while, I start a book I can't or won't finish.

Sometimes it's only a page or two in.  And, most of the time, it's not because those pages didn't grab me.  Usually it's because the author has done something to irritate me in the first couple pages.  If you're already annoying me so close to the beginning, it doesn't bode well for my enjoyment of the rest of the book.  The other day I started a book and in the first few paragraphs I was like 'nope, don't want to be preached at for 400+ pages.'

Sometimes it's farther in.  That might be for various reasons - I learn something annoying that I can't get past, there are so many editing errors my brain is starting to hurt, I've discovered the main character is too stupid to live... Those kinds of things.  I DNF'd a book yesterday that was gripping and well written and the MC was smart, but the author had ratched up the squick factor so high, it was stop reading or have those scenes imprinted on my brain for all eternity.  Which was too bad because, like I said, it was a very gripping story.  :shrug:

There are books over the past 43 years I probably should not have finished for that exact reason.  They're in my head and they always will be.  (And movies I should've never watched.  :shudder:)

Anyway, I've DNF'd more books this month that usual and it's early in October yet.  That comes from trying new things, I guess.  I'm not going to stop trying new authors and new books, though.  I'll just chalk it up to being the price I pay for expanding my horizons.

Oh, and in case you're wondering, you'll almost never see exactly which books I DNF'd.  I don't review them.  And if I've already said I was reading it in Goodreads, I'll usually delete the book from my library so it doesn't look like I've DNF'd it.  Whoever the author is, they don't need that kind of negative press from me.  Chances are good that whatever made me put the book down wouldn't be the same experience for other readers. 

What makes you put a book down?  Have you had any of those recently?  (No identifying stuff about the books, please.  We're just chatting about the act of DNF'ing.)

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Sunday Update - Week 40?

Are there really only 12 weeks left in the year?  No, really, I have no clue.  And I'm too lazy to look it up.  If so, then wow.

Okay, last week...  Hmm...

Well, here's the thing.  I have writer's block - or as I like to call it, a case of the squirms.  I finally admitted that to myself a couple days ago.  I can't see my way through the end of this damn book.  Which pretty much means I screwed something up in the storyline somewhere along the way.  I went back and snipped some lame stuff, but that didn't help.  I thought about jumping to another story, but as long as Early Grave site there 90% finished, my brain refuses to think about anything else.  Finish this or you get nothing.  Ugh.  This will pass.  It always does.  I may just sit down and force myself to write the most outlandish ending I can think of, pages of totally weird crap, and explode my way out of the block.  We'll see.

I read three books last week.  I read another Cat Who book.  It was okay, but I'm at the point where I'm missing installments and I got a little lost with this one, having skipped one.  Oh well.  Also, Silver James' The Cowboy's Christmas Proposition released and I inhaled it.  And then I picked up a new-to-me, under appreciated author in a SF/F vein.  The Defender of Rebel Falls by Erik Christensen.  It was really interesting.  FYI, though, I had a slight formatting issue on my Kindle Fire, but it was fine on my old Kindle.  It might've been my device. Download at your own risk.

Fishing happened.  And I scored an awesome rig at the thrift store.  Nice pole with an Abu Garcia reel for only $11.25.  Yesterday, Hubs swapped my baitcaster onto the new pole and put the new/old reel on my old pole.  (The old pole needs a repair, but I have to score some superglue first.)

I went for a walk.  Not usually a task worthy of updating, but I haven't gone for a walk since I screwed up my ankle 7 weeks ago.  We didn't go super far, but it worked, so it's all good.

Sunday, I wanted to make a cake for Hubs, but he didn't want a cake, and after some thought, I didn't feel like cake either, so I made cake mix cookies.  Except I was too lazy to make them as drop cookies.  I smushed the batter into an 8x10" pan and turned out a batch of bar cookies... brownies... something.  They were awesome.  Devil's Food cake with peanut butter chips.  Warm with ice cream.  OMG. I also made spaghetti with a sauce worthy of writing it down.  Banner food week, I guess.

Okay, I think that's it.  There could've been other stuff, but I'm brain dead.  What's new with you?

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Saturday Fishing Report - 10/7/17

Hello and welcome once again to the Saturday Fishing Report brought to you today by Folgers* and Misty*.  Later this morning I might be sponsored by donuts.

Started the week out last Sunday.  Fishing in the morning.  Caught a couple little bluegills, but it was hard going. 

Tuesday - Caught 3 bluegills and a punkinseed.  All of them around 5-6".  This was the largest punkinseed I've caught here.  I had despaired of ever catching a punkinseed larger than bait, but the bigger ones have to be out there somewhere.  The 5" wasn't big enough to eat, but there's hope.

Wednesday - Caught 2 bluegills and a green sunfish.  Again, all 5-6".  If you've never seen a green sunfish, they're kind of what you might imagine happening if a perch, a bluegill, and a punkinseed had babies.  Pretty fish and good fighters.  Can't wait to catch one large enough to eat.  Last year I caught a 9" one, but I didn't know what it was at the time and I didn't want to keep something under the length limit, so I put it back.  After I got home, I looked it up online and wanted to kick myself. 

The lake water is still pretty warm and most of the bigger fish are deep.  And the ones that aren't deep aren't interested in my worms or my lures.  But I'll keep trying.

Oh!  Almost forgot.  I did go back to the thrift store and buy that rod/reel.  It was $15, but they had a 25% off sale, so I got it for $11.25.  The rod is a Southbend Eclipse and the reel is an Abu Garcia Cardinal ProMax3.  Score!  Spent time trying them out this morning and they work like a dream.  Double Score!

See ya next week.  In the meantime, get outside for a while.  Go for a drive.  Sit by a lake.  Soak up the sun.  Walk around your yard.  Something. 

*I am in no way endorsed by these brands, but without them I could not continue to be a functioning human being.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Thursday This n That

I discovered the show 'Forged in Fire' recently.  I'd seen commercials for it and I thought it would be stupid, but then one day when nothing else was on, I thought I'd give it a whirl.  I love it.  "This blade will keel."  Hehehe.  The new episode on Tuesday Night - the international competition - was awesome.  Four people from different countries competing against each other to make blades and win $10K.  And they were competing while being good people.  I get so sick of competition shows where the competitors are assholes to each other.

I finally sat through most of Jurassic World last night.  I'd watched part of it before and I thought it was lame.  But I thought I'd give it a whirl - because nothing else was on.  Yep, it was still lame.  Velociraptors with cameras strapped to their heads?  Why not sea bass with lasers ala Austin Powers?  I was rooting for the dinosaurs to eat most of the characters.  I liked the one tech geek with the plastic dinosaurs on his desk and the black guy assistant to the hero.  I know the tech geek lived and I hope the other dude lived, too.  Everyone else deserved to get munched upon for they are crunchy and good even without ketchup.  I had hoped BD Wong's helicopter would get eaten by the big fish-dino, but no such luck - thus setting up the chance at another sequel that should never ever be made.  Dr. Crichton had to be spinning in his grave over this one.

I was out at the lake the other day when this young dude stumbled upon me, much to his surprise.  He recovered well, but as he was attempting to make unnecessary small talk, he happened to say 'the lake is really low right now'.  I couldn't help myself - I scoffed aloud.  (I have a bad habit of scoffing aloud.)  After he shot me a look, I explained the reality of it - the lake is normal right now at 916, low was earlier in the year when it was 906 - which probably didn't help my case.  Then he said 'oh yeah, it was really low last summer' - which didn't help his case.  If he knew it was way lower last year, why did he say it was low now???  :eyeroll: Uncle Hank preserve me from inane small talk.

Another time I was at the lake and a couple of older women rolled up in their all terrain vehicle.  They asked how the fishing was going and I told them I'd caught a few little bluegills.  One of them said 'well, that's something', to which I replied 'yeah, it's better than getting skunked'.  Then the lady said "And there's less stink."  And we all laughed.  That kind of small talk I can deal with.

I run across some odd people.  About two months ago, I arrived at the bait shop and parked beside a car that looked as if it had been in some kind of major roll over accident.  Inside, a heavyset, grungy looking dude was chatting with my bait gal.  I walked back and got my worms.  When I took them to the register, the dude said goodbye and left, at which point my gal thanks me profusely for showing up when I did.  I didn't think anything of it until later.  Anyway, dude gets into his craptastic car with the shattered windshield and drives off.  I thanked my lucky stars he went the opposite direction from where I was going.  I realized later that bait gal was thanking me for my presence because it encouraged the dude to leave.  Flash forward to today.  I'm driving home from fishing and I see the dude driving toward me!  The car looked exactly the same!  Shattered windshield, missing bumpers, doors caved in.  :shudder:  How he hasn't been stopped and ticketed and had that piece of crap towed away is beyond me.

Okay, you've stuck with me this long and I thank you, but I'll let you get back to your day.  Have an awesome one!  And tell me what little this-n-thats you have for me.