November 2nd, 2006


The system is down (doo-doo-do-doo-doo)

The flea situation has gotten so bad that not only are the poms going in for a second flea dip (I think it's been a month since the last one), but the cat is going to the vet. You have to understand, I don't think the Bad Cat's been to the vet since s/he (long story) was spayed nearly ten years ago. "The cat is going to the vet" is one of those phrases uttered with the stentorian awe and dread usually reserved for secret government codes or techno club music samples. EMERGENCY! EMERGENCY! DEFCON 5! THE EAGLE HAS LANDED. EMERGENCY! THIS MESSAGE WILL SELF-DESTRUCT. THE CAT IS GOING TO THE VET. THE CAT IS GOING TO THE VET. (Doo-doo-do-doo-doo! Doo-doo-do-doo-doo! WOOP WOOP WOOP WOOP.)

Meanwhile, my itching of a couple weeks back has stopped. It stopped pretty immediately, as did the crushing wave of depression, when I went back down from 100 to 50 mg of Lamictal. I don't know what the doctor wants to do about that, since she seemed to think I could go up to 200 mg, but ain't no way in hell I'm taking any more than this. I feel pretty good at this level and, more to the point, I feel crushingly awful at any level higher than this.

I don't know what I want to do about the Lost recaps, since I have two to do now--I mean, other than do them. I'd just like to get some NaNoWriMoing in, so I don't know whether to try to do a marathon of recapping or one today and one tomorrow or what. I guess I should do one and then see how I feel.

Novelist William Styron dies at 81. For those of us who are movie buffs, he would be best known for writing Sophie's Choice. Read the article, though, because Styron was a huge activist and pretty fascinating:

A handsome, muscular man, with a strong chin and wavy dark hair that turned an elegant white, Styron was a Virginia native whose obsessions with race, class and personal guilt led to such tormented narratives as "Lie Down In Darkness" and "The Confessions of Nat Turner," which won the Pulitzer despite protests that the book was racist and inaccurate.

His other works included "Sophie's Choice," the award-winning novel about a Holocaust survivor from Poland, and "A Tidewater Morning," a collection of fiction pieces. He also published a book of essays, "This Quiet Dust," and the best-selling memoir "Darkness Visible," in which Styron recalled nearly taking his own life.

Styron was a liberal long involved in public causes, from supporting a Connecticut teacher suspended for refusing to say the Pledge of Allegiance to advocating for human rights for Jews in the Soviet Union. In the 1990s, Styron was among a group of authors and historians who successfully opposed plans for a Disney theme park near the Manassas National Battlefield in northern Virginia.

Shirley Temple Black injured in a fall.

Courtney Love says Gibson helped her get sober. "Mel kept coming to the door with this cheesy grin going, 'Hi!' " Love adds that they did, in fact, know each other. Which takes a load off my mind, because how creepy would it be for Crazy Mel Gibson just to show up at your hotel room with a psychotic grin and refuse to go away? "Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii."

Prince bringing purple reign to Vegas.

My God, poor Chuck. (He does make a fantastic Leia, though.)

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Hmm. Have felt off-kilter all day--found it hard to think. Got some writing done, but not as much as I'd like. So, since I couldn't think straight anyway, I noodled around on some writing-related activities, like updating my mp3 playlist* for the story and working on its PB Wiki a little bit. It's bad, of course, to use things like this as an excuse to not get started, but after I stared at a blank chunk of Word document for half an hour, I figured it was better to do something. It's just frustrating because I know what needs to happen through at least the next three scenes, but all I want to do is take a hot bath and crawl into bed.

I'm so crazy-protective of things that I don't even want to mention the title of my story, but suffice it to say that I decided to go with the Sleepy Hollow-era story in the farm village, and I cleaned off several icon spaces so I could upload some fun story-related ones. It's kind of weird to move back a hundred years after spending a month working on Black Ribbon--which has too much baggage and too much research yet undone to make a good NaNo project--so visual aids are helping. Of course, I say Black Ribbon requires too much research, but the new story requires recreational reading of the Malleus Maleficarum, so I don't know who I'm kidding.

muffinbutt: "Hey, for your next linkspam, you might link to this. I know a lot of women who were on the birth control patch and experienced various complications, and the knowledge needs to get out there that litigation is going forward. It's hard for me to imagine that anyone in their right mind is still on it, but it's possible that people aren't informed, so. Thanks."

The Colbert Report auctions off painting: "Chad Walldorf's chain of barbecue restaurants paid $50,605 for the portrait, which The Colbert Report sold on e-Bay, with the money going to charity. The painting hung above the fireplace on the set of the Comedy Central show and depicts a debonair Colbert standing in front of a similar portrait of himself. Colbert announced the winner on Tuesday's show. Walldorf and his business partners, who oversee 17 Sticky Fingers restaurants throughout the South, intend to mount the portrait in their restaurant in Charleston, S.C., which is Colbert's hometown. 'We don't know much about art, but figured any time you can get two portraits for the price of one, then it must be a great deal ... It's like a buy-one-get-one-free on the American Dream,' Walldorf, 38, told The Associated Press in a recent interview, sounding appropriately Colbert-inflated. The Colbert crew has since filled its wall with a new portrait-within-a-portrait-within-a-portrait."

Tom Cruise, MGM form new United Artists. How... special. My mother saw this on the nightly news and immediately barked, "Well, now I know which movies not to see." You know, I thought Sumner Redstone was deluding himself and/or exaggerating a bit when he claimed that his wife Paula basically stood for all women in her new dislike of Crazy Tom Cruise, but he may be on to something here.

Study: Office Bullies Create Workplace 'Warzone.'

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Also, I feel a need to clarify the Dooce link I posted this morning. Chuck is an old hand at wearing, balancing, or carrying random objects. I think I felt sorry for him just because the Vader costume looked so stuffy.

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