Booooooo!!! Happy Hallowe’en!!!!

The jack o’lanterns leer and scowl;
With wide-eyed menace glares the owl;
As bat wings whir and black paws prowl,
It’s Hallowe’en tonight! Let’s howl!


Aaaack — it ate my entry

Never just type an entry in that box on the Update Journal page. Always use NotePad or some other text editor to make the words, then copy and paste them in.

I mean this for your own good. Really. I am so serious.

I just got through typing an INSPIRED entry. It was bodacious . . . salacious . . . intrepid . . . ineffable, ethereal, sacred, divine . . . difficult to describe or express in words alone. But then I got to where you put in your “mood,” and it went to a mood I didn’t want, so I kind of spazzed out and hit the “delete” key on my keyboard.

Who’d’a thunk THAT would do ANYTHING? Least of all POP AWAY THAT ENTIRE SCREEN AND RETURN TO THE PREVIOUSLY VISITED WEBPAGE? Huh?! What is THAT? Is that a BUG, or some idiot’s idea of a GOOD FEATURE?

Pblttt!!! Waaaah! No fair!!!

So anyway. I suppose I was not “supposed” to post that one. I’m not about to try to reconstruct it NOW, for goodness’ sake. It’s nearly HALLOWE’EN!!! In fact . . . it’s 42 minutes into it! I’ve got to get to bed and watch the rest of my “Sabrina” marathon!!

(I just typed this into the “box.” But do as I say, not as I do.)

I was just surfin’ around (again, I’m not having a real great time sleeping today) and clicked on pegkerr’s journal so I could see what her hair looked like before* (um, yeah, I really need to get a life–surfing people’s journals to see what their “before” photos looked like–even *I* wince at how pathetic I am), *but* it was justified after all, ’cause I found this:

“I am uncomfortable with being asked to praise myself. I think immediately of Luke 14:1, 7-14, where Jesus advises those with good manners to choose the lower seat at the banqueting table so that the host will advise you to sit higher up. (Verse 11 reads. “For all who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”) Aren’t people who boast about themselves more than just a tad embarrassing?”

YES. That’s what I was whining about in this previous entry. More or less.

Read the rest of her musing (about her writing) here.

I’m also totally floored by her admission that she has something like FIVE HUNDRED people on her “Friends” list. No doubt that’s why she hasn’t written me some kind of welcome message yet (**GRIN**), as have some of my other LJ discoveries/friends. *boggle* Man-oh-man. Er, woman-oh-woman, that is. I have, what, thirty people on my list? And not all of them have any idea I’ve even put them on my list.

And I still do not know how to make a LJ cut (it is NOT in the “help” file area) nor how to make a reference to another LJ user so that it makes that little rubber-stamp sign before the name.

*She posted a wonderful family photo of herself with her hubby and two daughters. One daughter has Daddy’s smile and the other has Mama’s. They look like the quintessential American family for a Christmas card photo. And that is meant as a compliment.

VOTER HELP: Report probs at 1-866-MY VOTE-1

If you have ANY problems during early voting or on Election Day, call 866-MYVOTE1 to report your problem and talk to local election officials.

Already reports are coming in from bloggers and LJers who say they were challenged on bogus reasons (“you’re inactive,” whereupon she had them look up that she’d voted in a recent bond election as well as the last Presidential election, and then they had her show two forms of photo ID, which she just happened to have–sheesh!). Do NOT let them take away your right to vote.

Dark night of the soul

“One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors.” — Plato

“First they came for the Communists, but I was not a Communist, so I did not speak out. Then they came for the Socialists and the Trade Unionists, but I was neither, so I kept quiet. Then they came for the Jews, but I was not a Jew, so I said nothing. And when they came for me, there was no one left to speak out for me.”
–Martin Niemoeller

Thirty years ago this morning (around 9:40 AM) will be the anniversary of my Daddy’s crossing to the Other Side of the Great Veil. Of course I dreamed about that. So I’m up early. I’ll be keeping my elderly mother distracted all day. I suppose we’ll go to WalMart. She won’t go to “fancier stores” because we end up spending money that we shouldn’t. But WM is humbler and safer.

Eep . . . Big Brother is watching! (Boring over here, though!)

Two quick politics thingies, but not about the candidates or issues. Skip if bored.

I think I told you about the “Saturday Night Live” bit that we saw (and saw re-run on MSNBC’s Lester Holt Live). It was just hilarious. The guy who plays Chris Matthews looks like him and has the lean-forward and the “oh, God” pounding on the desk just right, and the guy who played Zell Miller (“I wish we lived back in the days when you could challenge a person to a duel”) was on the nose–I even think he basically didn’t have to ad lib, but just quoted exactly what Miller said when he got so het up. And the lady with the bug eyes who’s supposed to be the Kerry manager was also spot-on. I do NOT know how the FCC let her get away with all those slang synonyms for sex acts and “being pol[l]ed.” (The Bush guy was good, too!) They were all fantastic. But I’ll never get over the “Yosemite Sam” part where they guy playing Zell has the two flintlocks and is shouting, “Twenty paces at dawn,” and the guy playing Chris says, “When we come back, Senator Miller is going to try to shoot me. . . ” That ought to be on the Web somewhere. In fact, the original piece was kind of scary. Chris M was just freaked out and laughing because he couldn’t take it that seriously, but when they cut to a break and came back, both Ron Reagan and Pat Buchanan were sitting there with saucer-eyes and Pat says, “Chris, the man just challenged you to a duel!!!” It was the ultimate live television!! You know what I just realized? If only Steve Allen (who has chronicled his own side-splitting adventures in live TV) had been around to see that! He would’ve just been climbing the walls to see that (maybe he got to see it anyway!) I know that Chris’s wife was freaking out and calling the cops and hiring bodyguards or getting ready to say to him, “You’re ready to retire, mister,” because it really WAS kind of scary at the time.

And in other news . . . wow, a romance author got her computer confiscated because she was surfing web sites for research and they thought she was some kind of a whatever.
This little piece
scared me. Eep! The Dallas police also threw an 80-year-old woman to the ground in some kind of bogus arrest last month. Okay, people, let’s buy a vowel here! Use some common sense! Stop being scared of your own shadow! Most of the time, this stuff is going to be basically innocent ignorance of the “rules” and not somebody out for trouble. We must get over being jumpy and upset. Those bad seeds caught us by surprise that one time, but they’re out of clever ideas, and so we just need to be vigilant, not hinky.

Whoever’s assigned to watch *me*. . . I feel really sorry for ya. The binoculars must nearly fall out of your hands all the time as you fall asleep waiting for something to happen. I stumble out of bed in the morning, take Teddybear (the Pomeranian) out to tinkle in the front courtyard, stumble to the mailbox, go back inside to argue with Mama about how she is supposed to take her medication*, sit and type on my novel(s) or on e-mail or this LJ, clean house, cook, do laundry, practice the piano, talk to one of five people on the phone (sorry, they’re all boring patriots–one is my 80-yr-old aunt, one my mom’s 65+ friend who is constantly calling to tell her something good is on cable channel such-and-such, usually the home channel or the news networks . . . and so forth, zzzzzz!)

And the phone convos are SO boring, too. “Did you pick up my prescriptions? And did you see how much is in the bank? I went to the ATM and it kept saying, ‘choose a smaller amount’!” from hubby . . . “I got anoootherrr rejection, waaaah,” from my writing buddies (or “I cannot DO the edits she ASKED for and it completely VIOLATES my artistic INTENT and this cannot be HAPPENING”) . . . “This is the So-and-So Society and we’re going to be in your neighborhood Tuesday and can you leave a donation on the porch” . . . “This is ExxonMobil and did you know you have not paid your bill” (in an Indian accent) . . . oops!! Maybe they kind of got a chuckle out of that last one, where I was trying to convince “Buddy” from Peoria by way of Calcutta (outsourced call center) that The Check Is In The Mail. Yep, they have already heard that one a few times, as it turns out. But mine really IS!! I worried more about the Penneys bill, ’cause it went to Orlando FL and they’re still recovering from all that hurricane activity, but that check came through already. Um, but anyway, even the most loyal reader is by now falling out of the chair with boredom, and so must my assigned “watch that suspicious writer” team be. I’d offer y’all some low-carb pumpkin muffins, but I don’t think they’ll fit through this cable modem.

My life even bores ME. I really feel for you guys out there.

*Mama got this new inhalant dealie, a disk like Advair but a little different, with a capsule you put inside it and then pierce by pressing yet another button. The doctor showed her, but she mis-remembered and wouldn’t press the “pierce capsule” button, so was soon feeling suffocated because she was not getting the expen$ive powder out of the capsule at all. I finally made sure she was poking the durn button, and she reports much better breathing. But she doesn’t want me to tell her what to do. “Get away!! I can do this!! Let me!” Yeah, I know. But she was doing it WRONG and I knew it. . . .

How nerdy/pedantic is it to have FOOTNOTES to your own DIARY entries?!

The cards lie. . . .

It sucks to be me today.

I’m still waiting to hear back about that novel contest I entered. The judge e-mailed me and said that I’d be hearing back from her around the 15th of October, when the deadline passed, so I’ve been like Snoopy on the mailbox. And watching the e-mail. That’s the one I asked y’all to pray or send positive thoughts in favor of. My family just smiles weakly whenever I venture to ask them whether they ever think a positive thought for it. I imagine they’re so jaded after all these years of striving that they can barely suppress the eyeroll. Really, now, if a person tries to play the violin and it ends up that he or she never gets anything but caterwauling out of the strings–even though to her own ear it sounds like music–isn’t it the kindest thing to just take the instrument away and send her off to play in the sandbox? So you can’t blame them.

I also “won” three critiques in an editors’ online auction. It was held a couple of weeks ago on eBay to raise money to pay an author’s medical bills. I paid for my three and actually managed to contact two of the Famous Personages and send them my stuff. One of them wrote back to say that he was very busy, but would get back to me. The other never wrote back again after I sent her my stuff, even though I’ve sent two “did you get the stuff” queries–one five days ago, one ten days ago. The third is on a cruise and won’t be available for a while yet, until she gets back. Okay, yes, right, I realize what I really did was donate to the charity, and therefore if these people decide it’s too much trouble to go through with messing with me, I should just shut up and say, yeah, fine, so at least I got to donate some money, even though we really couldn’t afford it. (The bank account was at $2.97 this morning, so I ran and deposited a couple of checks that hubby had been carrying in his pocket and the cash I was carrying around. We’ll be OK, but there isn’t really any “disposable” income nowadays.) They are under no real obligation. It’s my own fault. I mean, sure, maybe my stuff is just so execrable that they can’t even come up with one helpful suggestion. Who can say? I suspect I *will* hear back from the science fiction writer, the Scottish fellow who actually wrote back to me to say he’d get back to me. But I may not hear back from the two women. They are higher-profile here in the USA, and I realize they have better things to do. I really should not have put so much stock in hoping they could come up with some explanation as to why my books don’t get picked up. I wonder if the Universe is trying to tell me something in a nice way, without actually having to drop a piano on my head. . . . (Which would be a terrible waste of a good baby grand.)

And I have not gotten one personal e-mail today except from an old acquaintance of mine who is looking for an old friend (girl) of mine, hoping I would be able to put him back in touch with her. I really don’t know how to get in touch with her, but I’ll ask around. At least I can make myself useful to the Universe by doing that. Other than that, it’s all stuff trying to sell me something. (I seem to be on all the retail stores’ “sucker” lists: Macy’s, Borders Books, Nordstrom, Vermont Country Store, various women’s clothing mail-order catalogue boutiques, etc.) Sure, I might have bought something from you some time ago, but hey, I don’t have the dough to buy stuff EVERY FRICKIN’ WEEK from you. Go away and waste your bandwidth on someone else. (I’ll try unsubscribing the way it says you can in the messages, although I suspect that’s one way they know they have a good email for you, because you answered.)

It’s almost enough to make you join a “Making Fun of Those Simpson Girls” mailing list, just to get some mail. (Those Simpson girls, including the one who lip-synched to the wrong song and who can’t sing as well as **I** can, it seems, when made to do it live and in person, are from right here in Richardson, Texas. Hubby and I attended their home church, the Richardson Heights Baptist Church, a couple of times many years ago, but did not feel welcomed at all and soon fell away. I don’t know how pious and devout they are, but they don’t seem like the brightest crayons in the box. See Keith Olbermann’s take on it over on the MSNBC website. Sheesh.) I’ll go sing on SNL live any time you like, but I have a limited playlist. I can only sing “Tennessee Waltz,” “Crazy,” “Losing My Religion,” “I Don’t Know How to Love Him,” “Get Happy,” or “New York, New York” with audience participation. The karaoke bars around here love that last one. Let them sing the “New Yorks” and you’ve got them rooting for you! I learned that trick from the great Steve Lawrence.)