I joined Nerd Fitness tonight (nerdfitness.com).  The women’s side of things.  I’m apprehensive, of course — I really don’t want to have just spent $100 on the online equivalent of an exercise bicycle that becomes a coat rack.  God knows, I’ve made that dumb-ass purchase that more than once.

Then again, it’s never been the exercise bike’s fault.

Anyway.  I want to learn and do enough that a) I can evaluate if exercise really does help depression; b) I grow to see my body as a cool tool and part of me again, rather than icky baggage I reluctantly tote around.

So we’ll see.  Go me!


Short review:  Darwyn Cooke’s graphic novel adaptation of Richard Stark’s (Donald Westlake, really) Parker novel Slayground may not hit the heights of Cooke’s adaptation of The Score, but it’s still solid, clever, dark work.  It isn’t Cooke’s fault that Slayground just doesn’t give me enough Grofield.

Bonus that we bought it from one of our favorite local booksellers (Green Apple Books) at a noir film festival in a gorgeous movie palace.  The Castro Theater is magnificent, and every time I whine about how expensive it is to live in San Francisco, I’m smacked in the face by another reason why the city is so awesome.

2013 in a nutshell

“Help! I’m in a nutshell! How did I get into this nutshell? Look at the size of this bloody great big nutshell! What sort of shell has a nut like this?”


Anyway.  We moved from smack down in the middle of Silicon Everything up into San Francisco, right off the ocean, right off the park.  We’re in the exact same neighborhood, the exact same corner of it that my husband remembered from 90s nostalgia, and isn’t that cool?  The ocean is amazing, the park is restful, the neighborhood full of surfers and aimless drifters and busy busy bees.

I sold a poem this year, which is one of the proudest things I’ve done.  I sent out another one and never heard back, so it’s time to send out more rather than stuff everything back under the proverbial bushel for another twenty years.

I left my retail job at Apple, which precipitated the worst attack of depression/inertia/crap that I’ve felt in the last few years.  It isn’t money, it’s occupation.  I don’t know, contributing, doing, getting out of the house.  When I’m home, everything preys on everything else until I’m like a turtle flipped over on its shell, unable to do anything but flail.

We went to London for our honeymoon, and even though I was so sick the whole time, it was fantastic.  We went to Disneyland a couple of times and basked in excellent customer service and that odd sense of Americana belonging that comes with Disney and having the privilege to afford it and travel to it and all the rest.  We went to Austin and San Antonio too, and LoneStarCon, and BigBadCon here in Oakland.  We didn’t game nearly enough.  I was in a great Lexicon game.  I create and role-play stories with amazing friends.

I started poking at crafts – I’ve been obsessively folding paper and considering all sorts of adjacent paper-related things.  Orgami has proven to be really absorbing – it’s a match between geometry and handiwork, and somehow that’s really satisfying.

I didn’t read enough.  I loved a few movies, like Pacific Rim.   I read a ton of comics.  I am so happy I bought a Spotify subscription.  I whined about not upgrading my phone.  I became completely obsessed with nail polish.  I ate poorly, but walked more than the year before.  I have some sort of dental problem that needs attention.  I bought eyeglasses a few days ago, after not doing so since before my first husband died.  I bought them just before he passed, right?  And even though they’re scratched and nasty, I don’t know.  It’s a thing.  But new glasses are coming, and maybe I’ll see more clearly.

2014 thoughts:  write more, walk more, be kinder to myself.  love more.  be less afraid.


~Sarah McLachlan

The lake is frozen over
The trees are white with snow
And all around
Reminders of you
Are everywhere I go

It’s late and morning’s in no hurry
But sleep won’t set me free
I lie awake and try to recall
How your body felt beside me
When silence gets too hard to handle
And the night too long

And this is how I see you
In the snow on Christmas morning
Love and happiness surround you
As you throw your arms up to the sky
I keep this moment by and by

Oh I miss you now, my love
Merry Christmas, merry Christmas,
Merry Christmas, my love

Sense of joy fills the air
And I daydream and I stare
Up at the tree and I see
Your star up there

And this is how I see you
In the snow on Christmas morning
Love and happiness surround you
As you throw your arms up to the sky
I keep this moment by and by


To sum up:  what a charming, delightful animated movie.  I walked out with a huge smile on my face before walking three blocks with my husband to look at San Francisco’s Christmas tree and all the fancy decorations around Union Square.  On our way back to the Muni, we walked past the Macy’s windows full of kittens and puppies ready to adopt.  The volunteer I talked to about the joy of rescue cats said that 111 cats and dogs have already been adopted due to the window displays.  Awesome, right?  And then I walked into the Disney store and burst into overwhelmed tears.

Which is me, really.  That’s what I do.


Continue reading

The Day after Thanksgiving

We went shopping, but for used books and comics and dishwashing soap.  I don’t like having to park and stop on steep hills; I’m always afraid the car is going to slam back into the car behind me before I can accelerate.

Right now I have Ghost Adventures on the TV for ambient noise.  My husband is watching S.H.I.E.L.D. on the bedroom TV.  A brass band is practicing in one direction down the street, and music is blaring in the other direction, and in the distance, ships blare their huge, bellowing horns.

Mini-review:  Jordan Mechner’s Templar is awesome.  14th century heist caper graphic novel for the win.  The characters stood out for me, the action scenes were beautifully drawn, and …hey, it’s Templars.  I have a huge weakness for religious conspiracy theories, and the Templars are of course the granddaddies of such things.

To document Thanksgiving itself:  on the 1-10 meter between ‘YAY HOLIDAY’ and ‘everything is bad and wrong,’ I hovered at about a 4, which is better than I’ve been in years.  Two weeping fits and two pieces of pumpkin pie.  Pork loin carnitas, potatoes roasted with adobo and garlic, and kale with yellow peppers and onions.

I’m still documenting my beginning efforts at origami here.  I’m in a fantastic Lexicon game here.  My brilliant husband is working on Hillfolk playsets on his blog, the first of which is here.

Tonight he’ll probably go see a few movies in the Another Hole in the Head film festival lineup, while I play Lord of the Rings Online and role-play over Skype and eat leftovers.  It’s been a good holiday so far.


Things with which I am currently besotted:

  • This blog:  my scandinavian home.  A heap of my heritage is Swedish, and I’ve always been fascinated by the stark-yet-homey crispness of Scandinavian design.  So elegant.  Love.
  • This superhero:  Thor!  I enjoyed the movie to bits (except that the villains looked like Teletubbies in their masks, and I just can’t unsee it).  And then at Disneyland, my husband and I saw replicas of movie props and had a photo op with a costumed young man we’re calling “Mall Thor,” and I squealed like a tween with Bieber Fever.
  • That said, I would watch a Sif and the Warriors Three movie on repeat forever.
  • Origami.  Which I am documenting here, including the destruction of my creations by my cats.
  • OPI’s fall/winter 2013 collection, “San Francisco.”  My nails are now all foggy and creative.
  • Gail Simone’s run of Red Sonja, especially the woman-drawn variant covers.  Simone’s Sonja is satisfyingly angsty and pulpy, and I’ve enjoyed every issue so far.  My runner up for comic-of-the-moment is Oni Press’s contribution to weird Americana, The Sixth Gun.
  • And, Turbine releases an expansion for my beloved Lord of the Rings Online today.  Helm’s Deep, I am soon to be in you!