Fuck You, 2008

My friends,

I’ll cut to the chase here: Today, we will find out if our sweet girl, Daisy, has cancer. On Friday morning, I’ll find out if I have cancer.

If I have it, there will be an operation to remove my prostate and then whatever else needs to be done. All paid for by insurance.

If Daisy has cancer, it will mean that she will be put down within days. Not only would treatment for two tumors )one on her eye, one on her rectum) be dangerous to her health (due to her heart murmur and other factors), it would just plain be way more than Grace and I could afford, with no guarantees of her survival. Lest anyone think that putting a dollar value on a life is cruel, be aware that it is not something we like, nor is it something I have not done to myself.

If we don’t have cancer, we are both still looking at operations, with Daisy getting the more complex ones. But she will get them, if that is the case.

I am not worried about myself, that is not my way. I am very worried for Daisy. If we lose her, it will be a very hard hit on our little family.

So, if you have any good thoughts, vibes or prayers to spare for my girl, please send them out. Thank you.

How Many Bridges Do I Have To Throw You Off Of, Fred?

…as it turned out, it was 3

The Great Day Arrives

Yes, Gentle Readers, today was the day. There was much anticipation, followed by nerves, worries about the cost and, of course, the inevitable hard final choice.

Today, I bought my 2009 calendar.

Now, I know that for most of you, buying a new calendar is no big deal, but for me, it is. See for the last 39 years, calendars have been my version of a diary. I write stuff that happens on a given day in the square for that date. Sometimes, it’s as simple as “got a letter from Robin Laws” and sometimes it’s big stuff like “Dad died today” or “I married my Sweet Angel”. I can go through my calendars and tell you about gaming conventions, sexual exploits, movies attended, dinners eaten out, sickness, phone calls from distant places, jobs started and finished and a thousand other things.

Now, to be honest, I no longer have most of my calendars from the 70’s and 80’s. most of the 70’s ones got ruined (along with my very earliest gaming maps & notes) when a burst pipe flooded a basement in San Jose and most of the ones from the 80’s got stolen along with a box of magazines. Still, I have one from part of my time in the Navy on Guam (1974) and ones from 1985, 1986 and 1989-2008, so a whole bunch of years are covered.

The big deal every year is A: what topic will the calendar cover, B: can I afford to buy one (that was the big concern this year) and once in awhile C: can I afford to buy one before the new year comes and they are all gone? In 1998, for reasons I have forgotten, I couldn’t or didn’t buy one on time and was forced to use a picture free boring state issued calendar that Grace brought home from work.

As to calendar topic, that’s where the agony comes in. The subject selection gets bigger every year and even though I can immediately write off 60% of them, the remaining 40% are all pretty sweet, covering topics I like. In fact, here is a list of my calendar topics from 1989 to 2008.

1989: Who Framed Roger Rabbit? 1990: Various Animals
1991: A twofer!: Parrots on one, New England on the other (thanks, Avy!)
1992: Sailing Ships 1993: Tropical Rainforests
1994: New Hampshire (thanks again, Avy!)
1995: Easyriders Babes & Bikes 1996: Roses
1997: Parrots 1998: State of California appointment calendar
1999: Turtles 2000: Wallace & Gromit
2001: ASPCA Rabbit calendar 2002: Dinosaurs
2003: Basset Hounds 2004: Butterflies
2005: California 2006: Pulp Art
2007: Basset Hounds 2008: Pirates

So, after much thought…and careful consideration that the prices on all calendars were 50% off…I chose…

Gardening In California

It was a damned close run affair though. The other calendars were looking good…especially the Natural Hawaii and Above San Francisco (which is, in case I haven’t told you in a while, The Greatest City On Earth)*, but the gardening calendar won by virtue of having many gardening tips and such. Plus, it was two bucks cheaper than the others.

And so, we can all sleep better knowing that Uncle Doc has his yearly diary. Now this festering shitpile of a year can hurry up and end.

*At some point, Robin Laws (Toronto), Ken Hite (Chicago) and I (San Francisco) will undoubtedly have a Steel Cage Match to decide which city really is the world’s greatest. Or maybe we can just buy each other drinks and toss off witty put downs of one another’s fave city until the last man standing wins.

Cello Playing Nymphos From Hell

…or they might be from New Jersey

Thanks to all of you for the congratulations on my employment.

About the job

Ok, so my new job finds me working for a courier company called Tricor. Now, to start with, I’ll be just driving a courier route going from West Sacramento to Natomas to Dixon, then back to Natomas and finally back to West Sacramento. The route has 3 customer stops and I don’t have to load or unload anything heavy. But it only takes about 4 hours to do the run, from 1 PM until 5 PM.

Now, in a week or so, maybe less, there will be an opening in the warehouse for a package sorter (there are LOTS of longer & busier routes than mine) and at that time, I’ll get 4 more hours a day sorting. Full time work at last.

Mind you, this job only starts at minimum wage ($8.00 hr), but that beats the shit outta unemployment. And, should a better paying job come along, I’ll grab it.

And now you know what the deal is.

AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!!!!!

…which, translasted into Mongolian, is still AAAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!

I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB!

Only part time to start with, but that should change around January 1!

I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB!

It’ll cause me to switch my DunDraCon TOON game from Friday night to Saturday andf I won’t get to the con until late Friday night, but that’s ok!

I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB! I GOT A JOB!

Mind you, Grace and I will still be eating Top Ramen and mac & cheese regularly for a month or so, but…

AFTER 7 MONTHS OF BEING UNEMPLOYED, I GOT A MOTHERFUCKING JOB!!!!!

The Winkerdog VS The Evil Blanket

…so far, the blanket seems to be winning

So, you ask, what did Uncle Doc do today? Well, children, Uncle Doc had a biopsy done on his prostate gland…

….WHICH INVOLVES A LONG FUCKING NEEDLE GOING UP YOUR ASS, THEN THROUGH YOUR ABDOMINAL WALL, THEN INTO YOUR PROSTATE GLAND…EIGHT FUCKING TIMES!!!

And then, on January second, I find out if I have prostate cancer (very low probability) or just an oversized prostate gland (which I do…twice normal size, like my father had back in 1970). Either way, surgery is likely.

So, how was YOUR day?

The Rare And Beautiful Five Legged Blue Chickenduck Of Potawango Island

…they can’t swim all that well, but they can run like a motherfucker

Just a short post to let y’all know I’m still alive. I managed to send off a 2 page zine for Alarums & Excursions 400th issue. Not my most content filled zine ever, but not bad for having been gone for…I dunno…years.

In other news, fucking 2008 just cannot end soon enough for me. 2009 better be just full of goodness for Grace and I, or I swear I’ll lay waste to the civilized world.

Can’t think of anything else to write, so I’m outta here.

At Times Like This, We Need Dancing Elks

…and maybe a crooning moose

Not feeling very writerish lately, but here’s a meme to amuse y’all.

The Dice Meme

Do you re-roll cocked dice? Yes
Do you re-roll floor dice? Yes
Do you roll where everyone can see it? Not always. Some info is privy to the GM only, plus, sometimes you have to fudge die rolls.
Do you feel betrayed by your dice when they roll poorly? Sometimes, when I think they are doing it out of spite.
Do you have a favorite type of die? What is it? Probably the d20 or the d10.
Do you have different dice for different functions? No
Do you have different dice for different games? No, not really
Do you have more of a single type of die than the others? What is it? Yes, d6’s outnumber all of the others.
Do you have FUDGE dice? Yes, lots of them in every color they come in.
Do you have scatter dice? Yep, of several different types.
Do you let other people touch your dice? Yep
Do you have dice superstitions? What are they? Nope
Do you buy more dice even though you don’t need them? Oh hell yes! I have ton of dice, because I’m a diceaholic. In fact, back in the ’90s, I wrote a piece for The Familiar all about my tragic addiction.
What’s your favorite die? My black d100
If you were to put custom symbols on a die what would they be? Either pornographic pictures or dogs.
Do you have dice made of anything particularly different than normal? What? I have a wooden die or two.
What do you keep your dice in? Several custom made dice bags, including one with my name on it that a now deceased friend made for me.
Do you have more than one dice container? See answer above.
Do you keep dice in your pocket? Your glovebox? Your workplace? Nope
If you have a partner that games, do you have separate dice? Yep
Do you have any of the first dice you bought or received? I have ALL of the first dice I ever bought, way back in 1976.
Do you play certain games just because they have you roll lots of dice? Nope
Do you love your dice? How much? Except for a few moments of drunken indiscretion, no.