“I’m a pacifist” “That thing babies suck on?” “No, that’s a pedophile.”

Please note that all blog posts before 8 April 2007 were automatically imported from LiveJournal.  To see the comments and any LiveJournal-specific extras such as polls and user icons, please find the source posting at http://brianenigma.livejournal.com/2004/01/

The fluffy…
This morning, I poured coffee into the cat bowls. I need to learn to have a cup of coffee FIRST and then feed the cats after that caffeine intake. Anyone know of breakdancing classes in the Portland metro area?

It seems there is a trailer for Van Helsing now. Two questions: (1) Why is he holding the bladed frisbee thing from Krull? (2) Why are Frankenstein and the Wolf Man in the movie?

Neil Gaiman’s Neverwhere is pretty damn cool! After the first episode, you start to ignore the low-budget production quality and really get into the story. Big chunks of it remind me of the Harry Potter series split between muggles and wizards. Neverwhere takes place in “underground London,” which is populated by people who are basically invisible to above-ground London. Everybody ignores you, nobody notices you, until you confront them directly–at which point you may chat, but they will promptly forget you after you leave. Much like the HP Platform 9-3/4 and Diagonalley, there are many places and people that exist in London that nobody can see–or rather, nobody WILL see, even if they are looking at it. Supposedly, episode 4 was written in Tori Amos’ house–a home built into the structure of a bridge in London.

While we are on the subject of BBC television series, The Office is really good, too! Like Neverwhere, it took me an episode to really get into it, but once I did get hooked, I was completely hooked. The Office is shot sort of like a “Real World” documentary set in the offices of a paper company in London–with a smarmy boss, a kiss-ass assistant, and an I-don’t-care salesman. It is hysterically funny, but not laugh-track funny. You really have to pay attention because it can be subtle.

The serious…
Work: I have been writing the technical specification from Hell that would not die. Basically, since I am remote, I need to write something detailed enough (with lots of pseudo code and lots of basic stuff spelled out to the letter) that we can hire some new people to pick up the spec and implement it. A lot of this includes timelines and other “meta” type information. I am getting this nagging feeling in the back of my brain that they are going to want to promote me (or rather, switch me over without any of the things that go with promotions…like raises) up to some kind of project manager. I fear this, but it would follow the adage that everyone gets promoted to their level of incompetence. After all, why keep a good programmer doing what he does best, when you can promote him to what he does worst?

Home: Often, I use this journal for random observations, silly links, and as a way to chat with friends who are now 1,000 miles away. I do not always write deep personal stuff in here for a number of reasons. Often times, I do not feel like sharing that kind of stuff over this medium. Also, I would rather focus on fun positive things than pollute people’s friends lists with a bunch of negativity–I prefer to deal with icky stuff elsewhere and use this as a publishing medium for less negative subjects. I tend to get annoyed at web pages with titles like “DarkShadowBloodWolfChild’s Tomb of Ennui” that feature lots of bad poetry written in grey text on a black background, interspersed with animated GIFs of bats and torches. While, visually, LJ is a much different medium, content-wise it is much the same (try using that “load a random person’s page” feature and see what I mean). The technology bar has been lowered a bit because people no longer need to learn how to make a page in Netscape’s Composer and FTP it up to your Geocities site–they just type in a little text box. Sorry–I went off on a tangent there. I just wanted to say that I try to keep my journal neutral-to-cheerful, but this entry is going to break that rule a bit.

As you know (…or maybe you don’t?…), back on the 19th (just before this sad entry), Kate and I broke up. This of course made our vacation’s travel and lodging situation interesting. Everything worked out okay (after some initial anger: I wrote what ended up being three typed pages of hateful bile in the form of an LJ entry to never be posted–you know, like writing a letter you never intend to send, but we talked about it and things worked out). Upon returning, Kate was staying on the AeroBed downstairs and still lived here. Friday, though, was her last day in this house. All her big stuff, like her television and desk, were moved into the spare bedroom she is renting from a friend. While it is true that there are a few odd items of hers around–mostly assorted pieces of clothing and VHS videos–the house now feels empty of her presence. That first night was horrible, yet thankfully short. I sat around, watching a DVD, trying not to look at where her desk was or the empty spaces on the shelves. Two beers, and quite a number of tears, later I fell asleep at 9 (freakishly early for me!). Saturday morning, I occupied myself by doing a lot of cleaning and general housekeeping. Since then, I have been a consumer whore (“And how!”) by going overbudget on DVDs to distract me (see: DVD reviews above). Sunday, Kate and I spent all day shopping for stuff for her new place–bedsheets, furniture, and that kind of stuff. We had a bland lunch at Baja Fresh (it seems nobody can do Mexican food up here, no matter how hard they try). All-in-all, it was a fun day. The potential sadness of the evening was thwarted by watching The Office.

Right now, I am just kind of in a weird mental place up here. I really do not know anyone and am insanely shy, which makes it a little difficult to find new friends. Previously, I would meet people by hanging out with coworkers after work (going out for some beers, coffee, or seeing a movie after work as a department–like when Star Wars came out). I would get to know them, then maybe some of their friends, and things would branch from there. In fact, that is how I met everyone I know through D’s–Jeremy and I went there a number of times after work when we worked together at VirtualWorld. So anyway, my coworkers are 1,000 miles away, which makes that a little tough. The original plan Kate and I had was to host some parties and such at our house (which isn’t big, but isn’t small either) or go out for drinks after school, and I could get to know some of Kate’s schoolmates. While something similar to that may still happen, this whole thing has thrown a little wrinkle in that. Kate is my best friend, and while I have a fun time hanging out with her, I feel a pretty self-conscious with her other friends around. I keep seeing myself from eyes that are not hers and not any of her friends (as far as I know), but that I convince myself are her friends’. They look down on me and whisper (okay whispering eyeballs do not exactly fit into the metaphor) behind my back. I know her friends are nice people, and I know she is not talking bad about me behind my back, but that does not change the fact that I feel like a schmuck in front of them.

Posted in: Dear Diary Movies Television Work

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