Tag Archives: pandering

Modern Antiquities: My Impending Anniversary

I knew that I should have taken a nap first. I always get a little cranky unless I’ve had a decent night’s sleep. Well, cranky or incoherent, anyway. I was told that today was going to be my day to sleep in, which I was looking forward to because I haven’t been able to get much sleep due to this persistent hacking cough. Unfortunately, my wife mixed up her days off, and I was awoken ungodly early as she was rushing out the door to work. Sure, I promptly returned to sleep, but my alarm woke up sometime thereafter, and now here I am, pretending that I can still function like a human being. It’s comforting to know that I can still get my son up and dressed, fed and medicated, and out the door and off to school while functioning on autopilot. Sometimes I think that I am more efficient when I’m running on empty than when I’ve got a full head of steam. It probably has to do with trying to most effectively manage my dwindling resources, like trying to get the Apollo 13 command module up and running again on only 20 amps (and I can’t draw power from the LEM before cutting it loose). And yes, I did just watch the applicable bits from the movie again to get the numbers right. And yes, I know what I’m going to be doing as soon as I finish writing this.

I think that I almost miss working. And by that, I mean that I am beginning to feel nostalgic for those heady days of long commutes and the mindless tedium which filled my waking hours. Not that crafting moderately amusing rants isn’t work, of a sort, but it isn’t really paying the bills, and I am a master of finding literally anything else to do instead of being productive. I’m ready to start penning something in addition to what I’m doing here, but now that I’ve mastered the art of blogging (I have not), I feel too satisfied with myself, and as soon as I hit “Publish”, it’s like clocking out for the day. What I need to train myself to do now is take a little break, and then come right back and start working on something that people will actually pay me for the privilege of reading. I just wish I wasn’t so easily distracted by all the shiny things. And I wish that my office wasn’t equipped with a high-definition television and Blu-ray player. I suppose that I could move my laptop somewhere else, but then I wouldn’t get such wonderful Wi-Fi reception, and that’s kind of a deal breaker. Because I use the internet for research. And not for finding things to distract me when I should be doing literally anything else. Literally.


I have a little over a week to plan for my anniversary, and I really don’t know what we’re going to do. I missed the chance for us to repeat our best anniversary experience, as the VIP tickets to the Whiskies Of The World Expo in San Francisco were already sold out when my wife decided that she’d like to go this year. I knew I should have just bought them last autumn when they went on sale. But, at least there is a silver lining: My friend, Nerissa Lopez, is doing one of those pop-up restaurant deals this Sunday, and I’ve been invited (with my plus one) to come and enjoy the evening and review the experience on this very blog. It’s a zero-waste, gluten-free, vegan-style menu, apparently, which, if you haven’t been paying attention these past few months, is not really my thing. However, I can say that Nerissa was a wonderfully talented employee with mad skills in the kitchen, and it probably wouldn’t kill me to eat something healthy. Plus there will be booze, so there’s that. Depending on how both my wife and I are feeling Sunday, we’ll most likely be attending. And it will be an awesome anniversary dinner because it’s in The City, at a trendy (pop-ups are still trendy, right? I mean, I heard the kids on the T.V. talking about them, so they must be…) restaurant, away from the kids and we haven’t been out on a date together in practically forever. I even have a suit! Now if this cough would just go away, I’d be all sunshine and puppies.

I can’t believe that we’ve made it this long without a major stabbing. She and I are both incredibly passionate people, utterly convinced of their own infallibility, and completely unwilling to back down from. Compromise is something that we both believe is reserved for other people. Sure, we have different areas of expertise, spheres of influence, if you will, but we are also both convinced of the primacy of our respective bailiwicks, so it’s never really a fight over how a thing might best be done, but rather which thing would be best done now. It’s Irish temper versus Mexican rage, and more often than not we appear to be small children flailing about because we can’t have our way. But like grown-ups. We’ve been together as a couple for nearly a decade, now, and we’ve gotten really good at fighting. That’s another reason why I want us to go out this Sunday and have an amazing evening: I’d like for us to spend a night just focused on one another, having cast aside trivialities and worry, children and mounting bills, and just have fun together. Something to remind us that we’re more than just a couple of people who happen to live together.

My romantic muscles (not a euphemism) have atrophied a bit over the years, gone to the same place where I imagine that my hair has found its final resting place. I don’t think that it would hurt me all that much to spend a little time and energy on the courtship of my wife. I know that I’ve already won her heart, but it never hurts to give her reasons not to change her mind.


This evening, I’ll be posting the Fourth Chapter of Blast From The Past, my ongoing series exploring my past through snark. You can read the previous installments here, here, and here (I also have a bonus BFTP here. NSFW, language). I look forward to seeing you all back this evening.

And seriously, if you’re going to be in the Bay Area this weekend, come and check out the Tasting Event for Z’hara. Come and eat good food and keep me and my wife company. Please. Save us from the Youth of Today….


One of these days I’m going to have to bust out something in Spanish or British (I’m well-versed in the extra “u” and lorries) to accommodate my new readers. I’d love to do something in Norwegian, but aside from an expression or two which I don’t know how to spell, I’m really not conversant (My great-grandmother is turning in her grave). Thank the makers for translation programs. One of these days, I need to read my blog on my wife’s phone to see how the interwebz are doing in their translations of my work. Of course, the collected knowledge of the internet probably has a better vocabulary than I do, but nowhere near my sense of style. Someday I’d like to transfer my consciousness to the very core of the internet, so that my overwhelming snark and acerbic wit can color all of human knowledge. Like if you search for Edgar Guest, your computer or smartphone or neural integration just shuts down and refuses to let you play with others. Ah, a boy can dream, can’t he? Okay, enough pandering, on to the shameless self-promotion:

And while I’m covering things that aren’t entirely relevant to what I’ll be writing about today, I’d like to take a moment to encourage you to “like” my professional page on Facebook, Tex Batmart- Writer, and follow me on Twitter: @texbatmart. They’re not much, but I’m sort of attached to them. In the coming weeks, I’m going to try spending a little more time on both, attempting to build my readership in case the day ever comes that I decide to write something that I can hope to feed my family with (by selling, of course. I wish it was as simple as throwing words down the throats of my family to fill their bellies and keep them healthy). Over the course of these past few months, I’ve seen the number of my readers grow, and though you are all still part of a very exclusive group, at least the word is spreading. It’s probably for the best that almost no one was reading the nonsense that I was putting out in December, just groping around in the dark, trying to remember how to write. And as the year progresses, I hope to continue improving (and entertaining), and make it worth your while to come and give me a visit. Thank you!

So I’ve been trying to think of some sort of project I want to get funded on Kickstarter. I mean, I know what I want to do, but I can’t think of any of the PBS Pledge Drive type gifts to offer to the kind and decent men and women who are good enough to subsidize me. I’d offer an evening spent in my company while I prepare one of the three things that I can cook really well, but I don’t know if I’d be willing to dip into the Fund money to shell out for a plane ticket. I just need to find a couple of wealthy patrons in the Bay Area who like to visit small apartments in the East Bay and throw money at the poor. I’m okay with pity. As a matter of fact, I’d rather be awed for my magnificence, but I’ll take what I can get. I’ve finally gotten into a rhythm I can work with, and having to find a legitimate source of income is going to throw everything into disarray. Heck, I’m almost at the point where I can sit down and think about writing things outside of this blog, and though that may not seem all that impressive, for me it’s kind of huge.

Last week (or maybe it was the week before), I started on piece that had nothing to do with anything that I had planned on writing. For the first time in years, the words just dripped from my fingertips, and as I helped the characters to dance, I found myself genuinely interested in discovering where the story might be headed. I don’t know how far I’ll get in this, as I haven’t been sticking with it (and yes, I am aware that I need to write things that exist outside of this website if I intend to someday be financially independent), and I don’t know if it will pan out. But it felt really good to just set the stage and let things happen as the may.

Part of my problem, I believe, is that I really don’t have a dedicated area which is respected as off-limits to everyone who isn’t me trying to write. That includes my son, and wife, and the me that is catching up on T.V. shows that I recorded back when I was working and now need to watch to free up my D.V.R. Since I’ve come to learn how to write in the morning hours, when no one else is up, I may have to push this blog back a little further in the day, and start off with a couple of hours on whatever fiction I’ve got going. Mind you, that would involve taking positive and intelligent steps toward building a better future, so I can guarantee that I’ll even try it. But hey, at least I’ve given it some thought, and I’m not too obese yet to be unable to pat myself on the back.

It’s kind of weird: when I was younger, I literally couldn’t shut up for all the ideas that were jockeying to get out of my head. I had so much that I wanted to tell the world, and I had the energy of youth to propel me. Now, I think, I’ve got better things to say, but almost two decades of compromise and waiting for the future have made me a little gun-shy. I talked a little about it yesterday, when I mentioned my abject terror at the very concept of speaking to another person on the telephone. I’m so caught up in worrying about all the stupid things that I never seem to get around to trying. I mean, the worst thing that someone could do is to say that they didn’t like what I had written, and tell all of their friends that I was some sort of pretentious hack. Okay. That might actually crush me. I was hoping to allay my fears by holding silly outcomes up to ridicule, but that one seems genuinely plausible.

And I’m not fishing for compliments. Sure, everyone likes to hear nice things about themselves, but I’m just trying to save a couple bucks on therapy by cutting out the middleman and asking myself directly what I think.

*  *  *

I got a call from my son’s school informing me that he is sick, and wants to come home. I’ve just gone and picked him up, and he does, in fact, look Epically Pathetic. I’ve laid him down in bed, and he’s been kind enough to let me finish typing up this column before starting in on what programs he’d like to have wash over him as he lays curled up in a vegetating state (as opposed to a vegetative state, which would be entirely more worrisome). I hate this part about being a dad. I just want to know that he’s okay, so we can get back to our regularly scheduled fights over who is the Alpha Male (hint: under my roof, it’s still me. And, strictly speaking, his twenty-six year old (or is he older?) brother-in-law is next in line for the job, should I become incapacitated. Don’t get me wrong: I’m always down with quiet time. But I hate to see my little Minkey suffer, and wish him a speedy recovery.

Tomorrow evening, I’ll be posting the third installment of Blast From The Past, my After Dark series featuring the very best of my old blog on MySpace. This next chapter will pick up where the last one left off (with a possible flashback to an earlier post or two), and carry on until the birth of David William. Also, at some point I’ll be writing up a review of the weekly comic book series, Injustice: Gods Among Us (and yes, I know that it was created to hype up the fighting game of the same name, but that in no way diminishes just how awesome it has become). I’ll also be reviewing Doctor Who: Legacy and probably something else, when I get the chance.

For my new readers, The After Dark series are usually posted between 5 and 8 p.m., Pacific. I don’t really have a schedule for what days I will be posting them, aside from Blast From The Past, which I’ve been doing as an homage to #throwbackthursday. If you want to catch up on that series, the first chapter is here and the second is here. I hope you all have a wonderful Wednesday, and I look forward to seeing you all back here tomorrow.

Same Batmart Time, Same Batmart Channel