REPORT A PROBLEM
Something resembling sleep from five to ten. The usual activities. Shower and a rush to exit by noon. Drive the Mercedes through Laurel Heights and Little Russia past the Cliff House and down to the beach. Watch dogs play with balls and the woman play with waves. Soak in the textures and the temperatures. Stroll the Haight, balk at overpriced Burnery clo'es, lunch on prime rib and crab cakes. Roll some miles eastward before a stop for coffee y el baņo off the freeway. Home after dark, alone again, happy to capture a few chores, then go to bed.
Happy to see this site working again. Missed it last month because some concise writing about the death of my father might have been helpful. Nothing stopped me, but the lack of a set structure is enough for such as I.
I may want to list a few resolutions. Don't believe in 'em, never followed any through. But now would be a good time to make some needed changes, develop new habits, starve old ones. In other words, seek (and find) ways to drive my own behavioral therapy.
So far? Well, I've had neither coffee nor soda today, just water.
There were small encampments in out of the way doorways, where these wee hours gave brief respite to people with blankets and shopping carts and nowhere to go.
It was just cold enough to require I zip my coat. I was glad for the fedora on my head. The sea wind smelled mostly of the tall buildings it was filtered through.
We held hands as we climbed the hill, my other hand in my coat pocket. Lone men passed occasionally, some wistful, some angry. One of them stared at her from a doorway and said softly, "You are very beautiful."
New phone's huge. Pain in the ass to learn new stuff. I'll have fun with it eventually. Tonight it's annoying.
S1 called and we talked about difficult things and something happened, I don't know what, that made my phone make noises and pop things up on the screen and I fought with the fucker for five minutes trying to get back to the conversation.
Difficult things are mostly about the father of our sons. I haven't been engaged enough with James and he is floundering a bit, close to quitting school. But I will encourage him to keep at it.
Tiny pins, tiny wires, tine solder globs. A thin layer of glue.
Too tiny for me. A talented little Cambodian does the work.
Zoom out: An add-on board for camera validation. The rework corrects for a last-minute change to pinout.
Zoom out: An OS image created overseas controls the cameras just fine on a product reference platform, but does not boot on the validation vehicle. This despite the requirement both systems be identical to software.
Zoom out: Software engineer needed! But all have higher priority projects.
We can't seem to find any samples of the right camera anyway.
Woke four-ish coughing, got up awhile. At six set the alarm for six forty-five, forgot to activate it. Dozed until nearly seven, just in time to fire up the meeting software and call in. Put the meeting on speakers and had muffins and tea while my cohorts jabbered on about shit. Spent the time working out GPIO assignments no one had had time to finalize. Showered and went in about one. Spent the afternoon experiencing what you'd expect when a gearhead has to connect to custom hardware with linux and no one's had time to do any training.
Today was the day of my father's big memorial gathering, except I had postponed it. Three weeks was not enough time to even begin to prepare, especially with Christmas and New Years going on. Not to mention the overwhelming emotional and practical loads that follow a family death.
Instead the closer family members gathered at his apartment and helped me box things up.
His cousin poring fascinated through ancient photo albums.
His lady friend emptying sock and underwear drawers.
His first ex-wife loading boxes with books.
His ex-daughter-in-law packing glassware.
His son carrying out the bookshelves.
Sunday night concert in a small old club downtown. Legendary guitarist Dick Dale brought his middle eastern / hispanic / speed surf punk to a raucous crowd of a couple hundred tightly-packed hardcore fans, screaming, swilling beer, and shoving their way past each other to the pissers. My gal danced like a goddam go-go girl and several men and women closer to my age sent me smiles for it.
We're getting old. Lots of gray hairs in the crowd, wrinkles, earplugs. DD turns 75 this year. But going by the younger folk around, rock never grows old, never slows down.
A sick day, a mental health day. This cough is relentless. Maybe I have walking pneumonia.
I was never a hypochondriac and prefer living independently of the shamans and witch doctors. But I am getting to know my physician these days, for various reasons.
Who knows. What I know is I'm fucking annoyed by these chest-deep irritations that insist on erupting without regard for the social situation.
So I logged in via VPN and got my cube neighbor to turn on my desktop, and worked on it remotely. That was nice. But I'm "sick" and am now going shopping.
I feel the pressure all men feel when they date someone so much younger.
The pressure is generated entirely within myself. I get none from the lady in question, except for the numerous ways she appreciates how wonderful I am.
We've agreed there are no issues of low self-esteem in this pairing.
A woman about my age (50+), like me, understands her general place in the world and has either met her ambitions or is learning to modify them towards contentment.
This woman eighteen years younger still has high hopes, and demands much of herself
and those around her.
To an outsider, the spells for compiling and flashing boot storage are most arcane. We don't do disks anymore; there is no BIOS. Firmware unpacks and loads the OS directly. Versions change daily, are driven by the security classification of the processor, and drive in turn the revision of the tool that sews things together again and burns the memory card in-system.
None of this I understand except via observation. The only SWE who's tried to be helpful speaks Russian English poorly and, after giving up on the in-system method, seems also to have broken the flash programmer.
My life, fractured, a stained glass window viewed too close. All the pieces are beautiful, but the whole no longer forms a clear picture. Some of the panes are missing.
For all her jobs and her children and her increasingly distressed husband, the woman manages to spend a lot of time with me. An instinct keeps me engaged. Beyond her beauty and brains and strong drives, I am bound by an instinct: At any time the adventure could end. Meanwhile much else in my life gets postponed, put off, not done.
But I love the way she looks at me.
A smart and loving woman, who's been the best friend I could ask for, asks for me now and then, wants to see me, misses me ...
I never seem to have the time.
I fear I am ignoring her, will cause her to feel disregarded. I miss her too. But I have to follow my heart. To visit her as an act of maintenance would be an insult.
I miss her, but wonder about real attraction.
Bluntly put: My sexual response to her is a dicey business, whereas with the two I love more fully, it is strong and real.
Upstairs dance club, hip as can be, reflective surfaces, candle-like lighting, post-moderne furnishings, lounge open to the sky, flame pots, bars, dance music, girls in tube skirts, me and my relentlessly gyrating blonde. Amused going up: cost her ten bucks, but being over forty I was free.
"Why they wanna encourage old farts?"
"Because," she said, "they have money."
Crowd was a good mix of young and middle, male and fe, white and non, with the music dominated by what my date called "old school", in other words soul / funk / R&B from the 80s. She was young.
I have filters -- pretty thick ones sometimes. I have filtered my intimate life pretty well out of the interactions I have with my (ex) wife and sons. Not sure I can explain, but an instinct strongly urges me not to distract them with certain knowledge of how I am exploring life post-marriage.
While we were driving I let my son play with my new smartphone, and I said something rude: Don't read my texts.
My excuse: I was expecting explication from a lady friend as to why she had just said we were no longer to see each other.
It stings a lot less now that she's pissed me off. And I pissed her off, and she told me to fuck off.
Problem was: Not enough attention. She needs a text or something every day. Ha.
One thing she likes about me is I have a strong personality. One thing she dislikes about her husband is he gives her everything she wants, follows her like a puppy dog.
So I didn't respond enough last weekend and she decided that wasn't going to work for her.
I told her she needed a spanking, or a human puppy dog. Heh. Drama.
Penny M is under a year old and has gray hair and chirps like a bird and plays chase like a dog and has chased the other cat out of the garage and eaten her food countless times.
Lucky is the other cat and is ten and black and earned her name after surviving a ride in the dryer when she was still the size of a small shoe and then a ride in the truck's wheel well when we went to the middle school once for a concert.
They hiss at each other and take turns being the boss.
Annual review time. They say they want to do it light this year. But what means light? Same one-page form to fill out. Same 3x3x3: three accomplishments, three strengths, three improvements, all with supporting examples that align with division objectives. Same requirement to provide names for peer feedback.
Same problem remembering what the hell I did last year and who I worked with.
I try to keep records of what I do but I find categorization and organization so difficult. I just do. Put my time into boxes? The thought breaks me into a sweat. Just can't do it.
I get silly when the time draws near. Ya left yet? Ya here yet? I bounce like a puppy who hears the car.
And why is that?
Dating three women does not mean they each get 33% of me, of my attention, my emotion. Oh, no. There's no evenness, no fairness (except that I equally don't play games). No, everyone is different, every relationship, every date, every activity. All different.
One I sort of have to warm up to and then am glad I did.
Another is full of enthusiasm and energy.
And this one, she gets my truer love.
First there is fragrance ... Not an overpowering smell, but simply the sense that she is near, her presence fading in from black as consciousness arrives, well before eyes open to see or ears have anything to hear. Fragrance ... and touch, the feel of her skin touching mine. I feel her, I smell her ... and before darkness lifts, before there is any sound, I taste her too. Now her whole body, smooth and curvacious and warm, presses against my flesh, stimulates nose and tongue ... and this wakes me up enough so I can see her, and hear her say:
I led my lady by the hand down the row in search of our seats, looked ahead, saw who was there, and turned around.
"We'll sit elsewhere."
He was right where we were going to sit, the man whose wife I was having sex with. We had never met, and it seemed awkward to meet unexpectedly in a concert hall.
But his wife appeared and texted me that it would be fine. So I sat between my two women, and one of them sat between her two men. We only needed my other woman's other man for a merry crew.
I'm sure heaven takes many lifetimes to absorb. My taste of it may take a lifetime too.
It became real when they started kissing and fondling one another. Clothes were shed a piece at a time.
In the tub they made out and I kissed and fondled as opportunity arose these two women I knew so well.
A writhing body rested on legs, and hips and thighs and the V between were raised above water for me to feast upon.
The joy of tonguing a woman to orgasm while her mouth and breasts are being loved by another is inexpressible.
New directive, fresh job, needs to be done, leadership opportunity, reasonable fit for me, new sense of mission ...
Distracted by memory of a magical weekend, real love with a real woman, beautiful, brilliant, plus some moments shared with another ...
Looking ahead, date tonight at the Luna Cafe for avant-garde jazz, unless cancelled, you never really know with her ...
Remember my real camera, phone cam isn't quite good enough, especially with that ridiculous un-off-able sound ...
Oh yeah, I almost forgot ...
New directive, fresh job, needs to be done, leadership opportunity, reasonable fit for me, new sense of mission ...
Hate being in a walking coma. Can't think straight.
Used to never get sick and never take drugs. Now I'm bouncing between various varieties of common cold and trying every medicine known to suburban science. Not a one has done any damn good. My head is a pressure vessel straining against its design limitations, and my workday a cause so lost it may not be seen again until the glaciers melt.
Fortunately, my father's estate attorney is a professional and can be counted on to treat me like a total idiot. This I require of her, because, frankly, I am.
Found a "sketch diary", spiral bound, no idea how old, was 85c when new.
Dad was into a bit of everything. The sciences, of course, history, music, art. He and Mom used to go paint together, back before children.
Such people draw me, evidently. S2 keeps a sketch diary, draws and writes in it, does it all the time, never lets anyone see.
Dad's is similar, and has several pages of scenes, hard to identify. Suburban neighborhoods, perhaps. A stream. The chemistry lab. The front entrance to Chevron Research.
The things we find about our parents when they are dead.
I'm drawn by fascination with the energy and creativity and relentless go go go, obviously. There's a lot that's very sexy in all that, and even more in such a person always finding new things to appreciate about me.
A choice of words, a trick of light, a stitch of melody.
That's nice. But when I feel as though in spite of yourself you feel like you are in some race and are falling behind, I want to hold out my hand to you and say, no no no, you are still leading me. Come with me: Let's go together.
Beginning to learn more about the politics. Work activities are being driven by the need to maintain good impressions.
Maybe that isn't politics, maybe it's just common sense.
But it feels odd to plan around what my manager's boss will think come his Monday meeting. Simply to show there is progress, I need to take a few hours out from emptying my father's house this weekend and go into the lab to capture a few data points.
Will that really help the program? No.
But it will keep my boss out of trouble, and that arguably helps me, so there.
Despite six children, enabled by a sitter, she decided she was on a sleepover. Rare event.
Then I went to work. Then I got my son. Went to the place. Loaded a ridiculously heavy motorized bed and some other stuff. Got him back barely in time to go to his friend's play. Spent an hour solving the storage unit puzzle.
Thenceforth, lonely. Your Lat status being stale all day, assumed you were in stealth mode and out on a date. Wished you happiness and warmth and fun.
Want you. Want my gekko mama, love, comfort, peace.
Time also flies when you're not having fun. I couldn't believe it took a-a-all da-a-ay to load up the last truckful of stuff from my father's apartment. But it could literally take an hour and a half to load up the five by three foot cart they lent me, and I took something like six cartloads. The complication, of course, was that this was the last trip, and all that was left was the stuff that had been put off because it was not or could not be boxed and packed easily. But evidently I'm done.
Bad habits seem to continue. Here it is nine o'clock, and I haven't really worked yet, other than read some suggestions on how to use a back door to enable audio testing. I came in before eight, found the meeting cancelled, read and wrote some personal email, did a quick Facebook check, went downstairs, got eggs, potatoes, coffee, a donut, a banana, came back up, ate, did this, that, here I am, another unproductive corporate cube-dweller.
LISTEN UP EVERYONE! Lizz Erden is right. Don't quote the news or repeat the day of the week. You're just masturbating in public.
People like to complain about this year's lottery method of selling tickets for Burning Man. And surely as with any system there are aspects to complain about. But most of it is just complaint about change. People naturally distrust anything new.
It will work out fine. And since people are infinitely creative at gaming new systems, there will be plenty of tickets in the aftermarket. As any year, the only people who don't get to go will be those who didn't decide to go soon enough.
The most brilliant addition to the system is the BMorg offering a reselling service.
The Tip Jar