Wednesday, July 30, 2008


Tuesday, July 29, 2008


      Last night, I told my roomie about the problems I've been having finishing Murder by the Acre. He listened for a while and then said, "You've lost your mojo." And he was exactly right.
      If you ever watched Stargate: SG1, you will remember the episode in which the warrior Tealc lost his mojo, as Jack put it. Tealc had to nearly lose his life in a labor camp before he recovered it.
      What is mojo?
      Faith in one's self and abilities. The belief that you are capable, talented, strong, and so on.
      I've lost faith.
      It started in January of this year. I was sick for all those weeks, and MBTA started slipping away from me. So did this blog. I can't say why for sure. Maybe it was all those miserable hours staring at the ceiling. I have a regrettable tendency to replay my failures -- of which I've accumulated a pile over the years -- when I can't sleep or am ill.
      Maybe the battle with diabetes did it. I had so many setbacks, so many missteps, that I mostly stopped trying. I give lip service to it, but that is all. I know I got tired of all the endless carb counting and the finger sticks and the medications that I couldn't afford. And my efforts seemed to do nothing. I lost a few pounds, then couldn't lose any more. My blood sugar seemed arbitrary, up one day, down the next, even though the days were as identical as I could manage.
      The day-to-day stress and strain my job places on me has to figure in there somewhere. Many days I dread going to work. I sometimes flinch when the phone rings and I see certain customers are calling. I live for the weekends, and that's not a good way to live.
      Then EndlesS just about did me in. I was stupidly unprepared for its terrible sales. While I didn't expect it to be the success that Murder by Dewey Decimal was, I also didn't expect to sell fewer than 15 copies. I was hoping for about 50 or 60, but EndlesS was soundly ignored by almost all my friends and family alike. I desperately needed the ego boost, the reassurance I had something to say that other people wanted to hear, particularly since I was wrestling so hard with MBTA.
      Family illnesses, my sister's battle with cancer, the death of my uncle, the sorrow still felt by the loss of my mother and father, losses that accumulate. I'm not sure I deal with anything; I just learn how to ignore the sorrow, how to drown it out with work and writing, but it sits in the corner, waiting for those unwary moments.
      Maybe I'm just getting older.
      Tomorrow morning, I will have a birthday. I've always made a big deal about birthdays. You know how people regard January 1st as the time to turn over their lives and make big changes. My birthday has always been that time for me.
      But tomorrow, my brother-in-law has surgery. Tomorrow, my younger sister will continue to suffer from the aftereffects of her surgery. Tomorrow, my niece -- my oldest sister's daughter -- will still be in another hospital. (Yeah, that happened yesterday, my niece being put in the hospital. This morning they moved her to ICU. I did talk to her this afternoon, but so far, they’ve not been able to get her symptoms under control -- not that I'm surprised because the hospital she's in has to be one of the worst hospitals in the United States.) Anyway, family members are suffering, and that, my friends, is the hardest thing of all. I can't help them, can't fix them, can't do anything other than pray and frankly that doesn't feel like enough.
      But tomorrow I will have a birthday. I will be at work for most of the day. My roomie and other friends will give me some funny cards. I'll probably have lunch with a friend or two. I'll wait to hear from my family. I'll pray for good reports from the various doctors. That will be my birthday.
      Except for one more thing.
      Tomorrow morning, I will get up, and despite personal failures, diabetes, family tragedies and illness, mojolessness, stinky job, rotten health, global warming, war in Iraq, the sun burning out in five million or so years, I'll still be right here.
      Praying, hoping, believing against all intelligent thoughts otherwise, striving, writing, dreaming unreasonable unlikely things, losing, winning, loving for all the wrong reasons...
      Still here.
      I'll still be here.

Eleanor: We're jungle creatures, Henry, and the dark is all around us. See them ... in the corners? You can see their eyes.
Henry: And they can see ours. I'm a match for anything. Aren't you?
From The Lion In Winter by James Goldman

Monday, July 28, 2008

Hyper-powered death laser

      I talked to my brother-in-law this morning. I called, and he answered the phone. He sounded good, all things considered. He said he was sore and had a lot of bruises. He was supposed to meet with a couple of doctors today, but I haven't heard what they said yet. I'll let you know when I know.
      Otherwise, it was just me returning to work on another Monday. I tell you it's a wonder I don't suddenly start yelling at customers. Sometimes I can feel a scream of rage rising and I beat it back down. I've got to find another job. I don't think I can do this one much longer and not go bonkers. Well, more bonkers.
      I'm very frustrated with Murder by the Acre. I'm not going to bore you with the details. Suffice it to say I would cheerfully run down Bernard, Lisa, and the chief with my car should they happen to pass in front of it on the street. Or the sidewalk. Or maybe through their respective living rooms.
      Here's a secret about World of Warcraft. Don't tell anyone. It's not keeping me from writing. I play because I can't write. Writing is much more fun than WoW. I just don't seem to able to do so. I don't know what's wrong. I'll figure it out, but until I do, approach me at your own risk. I wonder if (other) mad scientists suffer mad scientist's block. You know, some days you can't get your hyper-powered death laser to work no matter what you do.
      And on that note, I'll close. Take care. Keep the faith. Power to the people! Eat the rich! Chew the poor! Bye!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

A few things

      I had a wonderful visit with Mikey last Monday night. He is such a joy. And so much energy. Practically limitless. He wore me out, but it was good. He sure enjoyed the pool. It was just the right size for him, he said. His papa brought him by my office Tuesday morning on their way out of town, and I had another 30 minutes or so with him. I gave him $10 to go down to Dollar General and buy himself a toy or some snacks. I gave the money to him in ones and counted them into his hands. His eyes got big and he said, "I'm rich!"
      He bought a large ball, a plastic sword, and a couple of other items. He still had a dollar and some change left when he returned. He was so proud of his purchases. It was the best $10 I've spent lately.
      My brother-in-law is improving by "leaps and bounds," according to my niece. He has to meet with a couple of doctors tomorrow, and then we should know better how he's doing. Please keep him in your prayers.
      Also keep my sister in your prayers as she recovers from her surgery. She's doing well. Tired and sore, but everything looks good.
      I'm up to my neck with Murder by the Acre. Corrections and minor rewrites on most of the book, but the last chapter is getting a lot of attention from me. It doesn't flow as well as the rest of the book. I had thought that maybe I was trying to force the book to be too short and maybe it needed another chapter, but there's not enough story for another chapter. It's nine chapters, and I think that's correct. I am so ready for the book to be finished. I can't adequately express how ready I am. This last bit ... is hard.
      And that's about all I have to talk about. Hope things are going well for you. It's a bit late, but go by and wish Frenzied Feline a Happy Birthday. She's 36.

Saturday, July 26, 2008


      It's been a hard week. My family has suffered unexpected problems and narrowly avoided tragedies not without cost. But I am grateful. Rain on her blog occasionally lists things she is grateful for. I think I will do this same today.
      First, I am grateful that my brother-in-law (married to my older sister) is still with us. Apparently his life will be different now, but he still has a life. He's angry, in a lot of pain, and confused, but he's alive to feel those emotions. The future will bring its problems as it well, but at present, life is enough of a gift.
      Second, my younger sister -- who had breast cancer -- had another surgery yesterday afternoon and came through wonderfully. She's at home this morning, recovering. Doesn't feel great, of course, but there's a good chance this will be last one for a while, maybe just the last one period.
      Third, I have a job. A lot of people are losing theirs and feeling the pinch as the economy tightens unmercifully. Admittedly, my job isn't perfect and causes a lot of undue stress, but it's a paycheck, and I am grateful for that.
      Fourth, I have good friends. I'm sometimes amazed by the people who remain loyal to me and care about me. I count the readers of this blog in there. Life may keep us from blogging or keeping in touch, but you remain in my thoughts and prayers as I hope I remain in yours.
      Fifth, possibilities surround us. No matter how dark things are, there is still hope. Maybe impossible hope by a reasonable standard, but hope nonetheless. Our ability to look beyond dire circumstances has to be one of our greatest strengths.
      So I'm grateful this morning for the many blessings in my life. Life has its hardships, but I'm not jumping ship. We'll make out okay. Together.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Prayer request

My brother-in-law was involved in a terrible wreck last night. Apparently he suffered a stroke/seizure while driving and crossed the median and hit two trees and rolled his vehicle, which then caught fire. He's still with us, thank the Good Lord, but he's in a lot of pain and we don't really know the full extent of his injuries yet. Please remember him, my sister and his family in your prayers. Thank you.

Monday, July 21, 2008


      The softcover distribution edition of EndlesS has been approved and sent. Which means EndlesS should show up on, Barnes and, and other online retailers in the next couple of months. I didn’t change out the poem. I didn't feel it would be fair to the people who had already purchased it.
      Next up: Finish and approve the deluxe hardcover edition of Murder by Dewey Decimal. This edition has different formatting, chapter headings, an afterword called "The Story of MBDD," a longer biography, a slightly different back cover, and an excerpt from Murder by the Acre. I think it's going to retail for about $30. I should have it finished over the next couple of weeks.
      Actually, what is truly next up is the "final" type-in of Murder by the Acre. We are on course to finish on my birthday. Then off to the proofers it will go on August 1. While they proof it, I will be finalizing the cover and getting everything else ready. The proofers' deadline will be August 13 or so. I make the necessary corrections. Then the whole package goes to Lulu, and a week to 10 days after that, we have a book. Two to four months after that -- I hope in time for Christmas -- it will be at the online retailers. Somewhere in there, I will be producing a hardcover version of it and of EndlesS, both of which will remain on Lulu.
      Of course, we will have book signings and contests, bookmarks and t-shirts, etc., etc.; everything we enjoyed with MBDD. I'm looking forward to it.
      Then in November, I will be participating in National Novel Writing Month. I intend on writing Murder by the Mile, the third book in the Measurements of Murder Mystery series, for NaNoWriMo.
      I also intend to finish Darkness, Oklahoma, but that will be going the traditional route of agent/publisher so who knows when you'll see it. I'd also like to spend some time with Justina Grave of Grave Matters. I think her story might be fun to write. That's all I have planned so far. We'll see if anything else presents itself.
      How are things going for you? I've been using my pool as much as I can. I have to fight off the mosquitoes every time, but I got some Off insect spray and that really helps. I usually play WoW some each day. I'm 28th level now. Sigh. I'm trying to make it to 30, when I can finally purchase a horse or some other creature to ride. A "mount" should make all that traveling go faster. It's slow going right now. I don't have the time to devote to it that lot of other players do so my level advancement is slow, slow, slow. But it's fun to get on and kill a few things every night.
      My character, by the way, is Alliance. My friend Roen's character is Horde. That means we never get to play together. I wish I knew someone else who played. It gets a bit lonely wandering around by myself. Which seems strange when you realize it's not a real world, but you do have a lot of people chatting and/or adventuring together. The social aspects of the game are hard to ignore at times. I did join a guild ("Freaks on a Lease," and no, I didn't name it) and have met a couple of people that way, but they play mostly during the day apparently, and I have a job, of course. They're also higher level than me so they're on harder quests and exploring different lands.
      Anyway, that's my life. I'm either writing, cleaning house, swimming, wrestling with bills, or playing WoW. Contain your envy somehow.
      Oh, this is exciting, though. Mikey is going to spend the night with us tonight. I haven't seen him in nearly two months. It's going to be good to spend a few hours with him. And that's what I'm going to be doing tonight.
      Take care

Friday, July 18, 2008

Praise from knowledgeable people

      Erudite Redneck left one of the nicest comments about my poetry that I've received in a long time. Because I'm never sure how many people read the comments -- and also because I like the comment -- I've reposted it here. It means even more because Dr. ER is a poet herself, and praise from knowledgeable people is always sweet. Thanks, ER and Dr. ER. You redeemed my week.

Dr. ER told me to tell you that Endless, the poem, is "effing brilliant." She went on and on about it. She is a poet her own self and said a bunch of stuff that you would understand but I didn't, so can't remember.

What I do know is I was wowed by that one, especially, myself. The poem made me mad at first. Then it annoyed me. But I kept feeling compelled to go back and read it again and again. Took me a long time to figure out where the punctuation seems to be implied -- but it shifts, too. It is a great piece of work. Dynamic. Almost like it's alive. Sort of has its own force, and every time I go to it, its power sucks me in, twirls me around until I see stars, then it slings me out of itself. But I want to go back and get inside of it again.

I mean it. And I'm sorry it took me so long to say so.

When Dr. started talking about it, I started talking about it, and we had a great conversation about it. She laughed when, she said, she realized that we each were come to the poem the same way we do music: She, being a trained cellist, comes at music, and your poem, from structure and approach to get to its soul and a glimpse at the songwriterpoet, and I, being a chicken-pickin' guitar player, come at music, and poetry, from its soul first to get a glimpse of author while only vaguely or generally aware of structure.

Anyway, bravo -- from both of us.

Thursday, July 17, 2008


      So I'm in the final read-through of Murder by the Acre. Me, my red pen, sticky notes, notebook, and a stack of over 250 pages of story. Just about every page so far is getting a mark of some type -- mostly formatting or inserting a word or deleting a crutch word. (Crutch words: very, really, just, some, etc., which can work in dialogue, but don’t in narrative.) I've not come across anything major. Fortunately I have an early proof from Crystal that has helped a lot.
      Otherwise, I'm not doing much. Work, write, sleep, work, write, sleep, etc. I did exercise in the pool last night. My arms and legs ache today, but not in a major way. I hope to exercise tonight, too. Depends on what time my roomie gets back from a church temple trip. It takes two people to put the ladder in the pool. Originally the ladder wasn't that heavy, but to accommodate my weight safely, we added wooden bracing and steps. It's heavy now.
      By the way, I noticed I used "final" in the first paragraph. I keep saying "final" this and "final" that because I keep hoping it will really be final. Of course, I know my proofers will find errors, and so I'll have to make more corrections, but that major ones should be out of the way. I guess I shouldn't use "final" until it's actually at the publisher -- although I can still make corrections until the FINAL distribution copy is approved, can't I? Perhaps I'll just work on MBTA forever and ever and ever … not.
      Anyway, that's what's going on in my world. A big shout out to Kirsten who is well on her way to becoming a librarian AKA Marian (see the Music Man for explanation). Another shout out to Frenzied Feline, Trixie, Jean, and Michelle, just because I can. And another shout out to Erudite Redneck who gets all pouty if he's left out and to Holly Lisle who won't get pouty but who might think I'm not stalking Her Writerness anymore. (I'm sorry, Holly, but I've been dealing with the restraining order that Pam and Jessica put on me so I've not had time for you.) In fact, consider all my readers and fellow bloggers shouted out to. Or as our friends and neighbors at HeeHaw used to say: S-A-A-A-A-A-LUTE!
      I'm outta here. Have a good one. Or have a good two. If fact, have whatever number of good ones you want. Let's keep you happy. Night!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


      All things end. With regret I've removed two blogs from my Blogs of Interest because they've been shut down. Good-bye Adam Huckeby and Babs The Conversation Station. I'm sorry to see both of them go. There are three or four others that I should really remove because they haven't had a post in a couple of years, but as long as they remain online, there's a chance the bloggers might return. I'm hopeful, anyway.
      Spot the Frog ended July 5. I've greatly enjoyed this comic strip. They're running Spot the Frog Classics for a while. Apparently not enough newspapers ran Spot. While I'm not going to mourn the way I did when Calvin and Hobbs or Bloom County ended, I'm still sad to see Spot go. You can buy two Spot books on Amazon: I have both, and they're good, gentle humor. Highly recommended.
      Murder by the Acre is ending. Over the next week or so, I will have done all that I know to do. I'll be glad to have it finished, but there will be small part of me that will regret it's over. Of course, I know there's still of work, but the act of creation will be finished for that book.
      And now I'm ending this post for today. I hope things are treating you well. Night!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Juggling hot irons

      Yes, I've gone from here more than I've been here lately. In my defense, I don't remember a time recently when I've been this busy. I've got a lot of irons in the fire, and I'm having to juggle them constantly. (I mixed my metaphors again. Don't tell the metaphor police. I don't need another simile fine.) Anyway, I'm going to try to post something every day this week.
      Of course, being busy is no excuse. We're all busy these days. I should be posting anyway, although I'd like to point out there is a lack of interesting material, too. I work, come home, write, edit, proof-read, write, sleep, and repeat the process. Throw in some World of Warcraft, a dollop of swimming, a pinch of housework and chores, and you've got the recipe for a fairly busy, but uneventful life.
      I didn't approve the distribution copy of EndlesS. I did reread it, and it's as error-free and esthetically pleasing as I can make it, but there's a poem ("The Things We Have Lost") I think I'm going to replace. As I re-read the poem, it seemed repetitive. Sometimes repeating a phrase or words can create a sense of movement, a feeling of increasing pressure, in a poem. But in this case, it seems to me like it's over-written. It's like I'm pounding the reader with my point. So I'm thinking I might replace it with another poem. I'm going to decide tonight.
      The Closer started its summer schedule last night. I think it's the best show on television. I kinda like Saving Grace, an Erudite Redneck favorite, but Holly Hunter could stand to gain some weight and the show could use some Oklahoma locations. I also thought last night's premiere was unbelievable. But hey, the show has an angel in it as a regular character so how believable do I require? Speaking of unbelievable but enjoyable, Stargate Atlantis has returned for its summer run. Friday nights are good at my house because first I watch Doctor Who and then Stargate Atlantis. Regretfully, Dr. Who only has three more episodes before its season ends.
      I'm mailing the July family newsletter today, only a couple of weeks late. I'm slowly catching up. My goal has always been to mail it the first week of the month. Maybe August or September, I'll reach it.
      My IBD has been flaring. Too much stress. I need a few days to relax and let things go. I will after I have Murder by the Acre ready for the proofreaders.
      And now it's time to get ready for work. Have a great day.

Monday, July 14, 2008

What Truth I Know

What Truth I Know

You say I'm wise
which makes me laugh
because of all the things
I've learned, the one thing
I know best remains
how little I really know.

What wisdom I hold
has only been won
by making mistakes
time and time yet again
sometimes new, sometimes old
but errors by any counting.

I've loved and lost
and somehow loved after
only to lose once again
learning as I did that love
doesn't care who you love
only that you love.

And death has been too close
taking precious people
some quick, some slow,
teaching me no one knows
when they will pass and the world
won't stop while we mourn.

Perhaps this is wisdom
or I could be too dumb
to know any better but
I get up each morning
because I want to see
what happens next.

Copyright 2008. All rights reserved.

Friday, July 11, 2008


      I received my proof copy of the hardcover distribution copy of Murder by Dewey Decimal today. It looks good, overall, but I made a couple of mistakes on the formatting that I have to fix before it can be approved. I'm very pleased with how the fully justified margins look. I had worried about that since I don't have a top notch publishing program, but by playing with kerning, margins, etc., I achieved a professional look. We're a few steps closer to it coming out.
      And I should approve the proof copy of the distribution version of EndlesS this weekend. I'm going to read through it one more time, but I think it's ready. I just want to be sure since you can't make changes in distribution copies without them charging you a lot of money.
      So we're making progress. Slowly but surely. And yes, I'm still working on MBTA. No deadlines on it, but I'm trying to have it ready for the proofers soon. My not-a-dealine-but-it-would-be-nice-if-I-finished-it-by-then date is my birthday at the end of the month. I think that would be an excellent present to myself.
      The pool is great. Not as deep as I'd like, but the price makes up for that. Too many mosquitoes, but that’s not the pool's fault. So far, it's a win. I hope to spend several hours in there this weekend, floating and enjoying the weightlessness. I need that feeling of nothingness or non-being. When people talk about the state of mind brought by yoga or mediation, I think about floating on the water, a deep blue ocean in my mind.
      And now I have to go. Take care. Talk to you soon.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

That buzzing sound you hear

(Edited to add: I thought I had posted this Tuesday afternoon, but apparently I saved it as a draft. Anyway, here it is.)

      Pool temp is slowly edging on up. I figure it will be in the middle 80s tonight. At last I will be able to swim without spit freezing my jaws shut. I hope the penguins don't leave, though. They're good company and so cute. Tasty, too.
      I didn't try to go swimming last night because a) I had too much to do, yes, I do, please help me, someone, anyone, I'm beggin' you! and b) the mosquitoes were swarming like they were starring in a SciFi Channel movie. I stepped outside for about five minutes and killed nine that decided to dine on me.
      It was perfect weather for them critters last night. No wind, not too hot, lots of moisture in the stream near my house. They're breeding like ... well, something that breeds real fast. Paris Hilton, for instance. And those little vampires find me mighty tasty.
      In fact, I am the mosquito equivalent of French food. My blood tastes rich, creamy, and delicious. When they bite me, they have such a blissful expression on their little insect faces. You can tell they're thinking, "Yes, oh, yes, this is what I've been searching for my whole life!" Sometimes they break into song: "Oh sweet mystery of life, at last I've found you ..." Then I squash them because they can't sing worth a dime even though the orchestra sounds good.
      They die happy, though. They had a taste of me. In a very creepy sort of skin-crawling way, it's sweet, even romantic, although if you truly believe that, please stay away from me.
      Speaking of the SciFi Channel, did you know it actually made and aired a movie about a man who transformed into a mosquito. It was called -- and I'm not making this up -- "Mansquito." No, seriously, that's what it was called. In the movie, a serial killer is transformed into a huge mosquito/human hybrid and seeks to transform a woman into a womansquito so he can mate. (Apparently, he was one of those people rejected by It ends badly for him, and the woman doesn't get any child ... uh ... insect support at all. After the movie is over, she goes on welfare, receives food stamps, goes back to college, gets her degree, and is a shining example of how the system helps those less fortunate, even those having insect babies. I think we can all learn from her story, don't you?
      We burn those insect repellent candles outside, but they don't seem to do much, other than help put the females mosquitoes in a more romantic mood. The male mosquitoes would like me to play some Barry White music, too, but even though the males don't drink blood, I still think they're creepy, and I'm not going to help them get their insect groove on.
      On that slightly deranged note, I think I'll close. Have a great day!

Monday, July 07, 2008

Poorly laid plans

      I'm officially behind in everything. EVERYTHING! Housework piled up, clothes everywhere, dust thick enough to grow plants in, carpet needs vacuuming, filing months behind, Murder by the Acre stalled and in trouble, Murder by Dewey Decimal hardcover formatting not finished, July family newsletter due, bills to be paid, EndlesS store still not done, EndlesS hardcover a distant dream, blood sugar is a rollercoaster, need to lose 100 pounds, everything is a mess, mess, mess. I do understand why people disappear into World of Warcraft. Except ... I have two characters dead in WoW and haven't taken the time to get them alive again. I'm even behind in my playing.
      I feel immense pressure. I feel like I'm spinning my wheels. And behind all of this, I have the sinking feeling that I'm not productive enough and/or not bright enough and/or not dedicated enough and/or not ... just basically not. I might be lazy.
      I also whine too much.
      So there I am. Don't ask me about MBTA. Even though I know you don't mean it that way, every question feels like pressure, and I don't have any answers. Don't ask about MBDD hardcover or EndlesS hardcover. Once again, pressure and no answers. But I will tell you this: MBTA will come out this summer. MBDD hardcover will be approved for retail distribution, and the EndlesS hardcover will be on I'm not going to surrender my goals just because I've become mired in a personal swamp. I will make it out of this. We will have cause to celebrate. I'm not beaten. I won't be.
      Anyway, that's my world lately. I hope your world is treating you well. If not, well, hang in there. We'll work it out eventually. One way or another. We're a match for anything.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Pool weekend

       It's taken until this evening to finish setting up the pool. Yeah, I know. I thought we'd be done by Friday at noon. No go. I got into the pool this evening just say I did. The water was in the 70s. I nearly had a heart attack. I hope the water warms up over the next few days.
      Anyway, I got nothing done this weekend so far except the pool. I'm so behind. I feel the deadlines staring at me. Yikes. I say again, yikes. Let's see if I can get this book finished and published by the end of July. I'd bet on me if I were you, but you might win betting against me. We'll see.
      Talk to you later.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Catching up

      Monday night was tough. No computer! Just watched Ben-Hur. Did housework. Read From Dead to Worse. I couldn't believe how strong my attraction was to the computer. It's amazing to consider how much of my life is spent on it now when 20 years ago it barely registered in my life. Times change.
      Crystal suggested I have a computer free night once or twice a week. I'll have to see about that -- I do my writing on the computer -- but it's something to think about. Maybe once, but twice?
      A good thing happened Monday evening, though. I met Kristen at our local library. She's just as nice, smart, and funny in person as she is on her blogs. We had a great conversation in the stacks before I had to leave to go to dinner. I've always believed my regular readers/commenters are marvelous people, and meeting Kristen was more evidence for that belief.
      I had hurt my back Monday at work by bending over to pick up a heavy box. It's better, but it's still painful. I'm hoping it will continue to heal up. I intend -- if we get the pool set up and everything works -- to get into my swimming pool for the first time this weekend. I'm really looking forward to it. It's not a permanent pool, of course. We'll have to take it down in the fall, but it will do for a while.
      KFC has been offering grilled chicken recently. Not as good as what I can grill, but still good. If they just offered a baked potato to go along with the ear of corn and baked beans that they offer as sides, that would be one good meal. I've got to make it to our local farmers market soon.
      Tuesday, I worked during the day, dived back into Murder by the Acre in the evening, did some housework, and played some WoW. That was it.
      And now you're caught up with me. What's catching your interest lately?