I give up

giphy-1Last night, I completely cracked the plot of the Skylights sequel wide open, for about the fourteenth time since finishing the original book– only this time it involves going back to the original draft of Sunlight that I got like 40,000 words into and then had to bail on, because I finally figured out how to make it work.

At this point the sequel to that book is going to be a foreword, 300 blank pages, and then the words “And then they all died” on page 301, because I am having that much trouble getting the plot to cohere.

In other news, despite the fact that I’ve put in notice at my job, there’s still a corporate visit next week and for some reason apparently I’m still expected to, like, do stuff around the store– I guess they don’t just pay me to sit on my ass and look at my phone for five weeks, or something nuts like that?  So I’ve been insanely busy at work for the last couple of days and tomorrow does not look like it’s going to be better.  I literally dusted every end table and coffee table in the entire store this evening.  Tomorrow I have to do the TV stands. I am crabby and sleepy and I have not had much brain left for bloggery when I get home.  I will, I hope, break myself of this habit tomorrow.

Seriously.  Email me some problems so I can do an advice column.  Otherwise I’m just gonna fictionalize the whole thing and that’s gonna lead to issues.

In which I need my knees broken

67788272.jpgSo I just found out this is going to be my schedule in the latter part of March:

Saturday, March 18: Work from 9-8
Sunday, March 19: Work from 12-6
Monday, March 20: Board plane to Denver– which, to make sure we’re clear, is not where my wife or my son live.  Upon leaving plane, attend sales meetings.
Tuesday, March 21-Thursday, March 23:  Lots and lots of sales meetings.  Probably involving some sort of roleplaying, with my days and evenings full of the sort of alpha males who might attend these sorts of things.  I don’t drink and will have nothing in common with any of these people and will probably be having to share a hotel room with someone.
Friday, March 24: Attend morning sales meetings and then fly back home.
Saturday, March 25: Work from 9-8
Sunday, March 26: Work from 12-6.  I have been informed that I will receive my “average daily pay” for the days I’m in Denver, and that if I manage to exceed my average sales for an entire week over the 25th and 26th I will receive a bonus of… wait for it… fifty dollars!
Monday, March 27: Work from 9-8
Tuesday, March 28: Work from 9-8
Wednesday, March 29: Work from 9-2:30.

And then come home and die.

I’m going to need someone to badly injure me on the 19th.  Anybody wanna get in on that? Is there a line already?

god what day is it

And now it’s 53 hours and five days.  Breakfast this morning was a Snickers bar and half a pot of coffee.  I considered adding a couple of cigarettes on top for a truly balanced breakfast but then remembered I don’t smoke.

The whole morning was jitteriness and is this the coffee or do I need a Clonazepam type of nonsense, the afternoon was abject fucking death-boredom, and the evening was frantic Jesus we’re understaffed where were you assholes all day craziness.

What I’m getting at is the review of Rachel Caine’s Ink and Bone that I was gonna write is gonna have to wait until tomorrow.  Short version: go read it.


I’ll kill your friends and family to remind you of my love: In which I liveblog the #2016Debate

wegotthisOh god just kill me now

FOR THE RECORD, I’m gonna be reuploading this every, oh, I dunno, ten minutes.  It will update frequently.  Feel free to do whatever in between hitting reload all the time.

8:47: In a move that will be meaningless to all but a very small number of you who have been following me for decades, I put on my Jackass wristband.

8:56:  I realize that CNNGo isn’t working and briefly scramble to get it back on again.

8:57:  Is Lester Holt Matt Lauer?  Is that the same person?  Oh, God, what am I doing?

8:59: Dear God, an hour and a half?  No commercials?  This liter of pop I have sitting next to me is going to be a problem one way or another, isn’t it?  Some dipshit CNN commentator admits that the first 15 minutes are the most important because the other dipshits who have his job are going to start writing their stories right away.

9:02: Shouldn’t they have started by now?  C’mon.  I don’t wanna listen to these dumb CNN people any more.  I wanna listen to other dumb people, like the moderator, and the vulgar Cheeto.  Oh, and occasionally throw Hamilton lyrics into the liveblog, because I’m behind the times and just got into that.

9:03: The nationwide polls aren’t a dead heat, Wolf.  Hillary has been ahead the entire time and Trump has never been ahead once.

9:04:  Woo here we go.  Are we sure this isn’t Matt Lauer?

hwP00V9:o6: God help me, my first thought is “Why did she wear that?”  I’m a bad person.  I am vaguely surprised that Trump’s tie isn’t red.

9:08:  Hillary starts by surprising me, not spending the first several minutes talking about thanking people.  I’ve already forgotten what the first question is before she really starts talking.  Jobs.  I dunno.

9:09: Dummy has his Serious Face on.  Hillary is a little hesitant at first; I’m assuming she’ll hit her stride in a bit.

9:10:  He relies on Terk Err Jerrbs, which isn’t surprising.  I already suspect the story of the night will be Trump sniffling.  He’s actually giving a half-decent answer to the question, up to the point where he says we have to stop companies from taking our companies.

9:12: “Trumped-up trickle-down” isn’t funny and she almost forgot what it was before she said it. Hits him right away with inheriting money from his dad.  Is she standing on the left on the stage?  She’s looking offscreen the way CNN has things set up.

9:13: Oh, this’ll be fun; she’s under his skin already.  Back to the breathing.  The “small loan” from his father was millions.  He’s talking faster and sniffling more.  My wife says he has a cold.

1517206039753204911.gif9:16:  “That’s called business, by the way.”  Oh, this is gonna be fun.

9:18: He’s tried to interrupt her two or three times and she’s treating him like he’s not even there.  He’s not gonna make it through the entire debate if this keeps up.

9:21: Dude can’t stand still.  I haven’t looked at Twitter.  I take a second to do that and see that people are already RTing where Trump blamed global warming on the Chinese.  Now he’s trying to holler over her.  It’s not going to work.  I seriously thought the guy would last more than 20 minutes before he started falling apart.

9:25:  “I’m going to cut taxes big-league, and you’re going to raise taxes big-league.”  Sure, dude.  She plugs the fact-checker on her website and my wife audibly starts laughing.

9:26: “You’ve been fighting ISIS your entire adult life.”  Huh?

9:27: I go to both Clinton’s website and Trump’s.  Clinton’s website, yes, has a fact-checker.  Trump’s is down.  Every answer he’s talking faster than the one before.  He’s stopped sniffling for some reason.

WhDxv1i.png9:29: Man, searches for “Donald Trump tiny hands” return a cornucopia of riches.

9:31:  I’m really not sure what “the worst recovery since the Depression” actually means.

9:32:  Ruh-roh.  Lester Lauer is bringing up Trump’s taxes and who he may or may not be in debt to.  My wife notes that Trump’s skin looks surprisingly normal.

9:33:  Whoa.  Lauer directly points out that the IRS has stated nothing is stopping him from releasing his taxes.  Whoopsie!

9:35:  The knives are out.  “That makes me smart,” he says in response to Hillary claiming he’s paid no federal taxes.  That was the wrong answer, dude.

9:37:  I’m kinda surprised that he kept his mouth shut the whole time she was eviscerating his ass about his taxes.

9:38: Someone Tweets at me saying “It’s like watching a lion rape a sheep only in a bad way.”  Which I laugh at and then feel bad about.

9:39:  Imagine if any Democrat said we were a third world country.  He’s done nothing this entire debate but talk about how terrible America is.  But Colin Kaepernick is a problem.

.новый-коллаж__700.jpg9:40:  Oh shit.  Oh shit.  OH SHIT OH SHIT OH SHIT.  She’s going straight at his business dealings.  Oh god I didn’t think this was going to be this much fun.

9:42:  Any second now there will be video of Trump saying he’d negotiate down the debt.  He keeps his mouth shut while she cuts him apart again.  I hope she brings up the little kids who were singing at his rally and are now suing him.

9:44:  “Let’s talk about race.”  OH THIS SHOULD BE GOOD.  LET’S DEFINITELY DO THIS.

9:45:  Wait, I was gonna quote Hamilton as a joke.  Uh… young, scrappy and hungry.  Or something.

9:46: Say Black Lives Matter, Hillary.  SAY IT.

9:47:  My “Interesting People” list on Twitter is moving so fast I can’t even keep up.  I can’t imagine what my full feed looks like.  He got the FOP endorsement at least a week or two ago, not today.

9:48:  Oh, good, let’s talk about taking guns away and stop and frisk.  That will help you a lot.  2600 shootings in Chicago in 2016 so far, btw.

trump-nope.jpg9:49: Matt Holt is actually doing a pretty good job so far of pointing out Trump’s bullshit.  Holt points out th
at it was ruled unconstitutional and Trump flat-out denies it.  Untrue.  He’s back to sniffling again, btw.

9:51: My five-year-old son, who is supposed to be asleep, walks out into the living room to announce that he needs a drink, and looks at the TV and says “Is that Donald Trump?”  HOW THE HELL DOES MY SON KNOW WHO DONALD TRUMP IS?

9:52: I’d like to hear the phrase “Systemic racism” from Hillary right now.

9:53:  HOLY SHIT SHE SAID IT.  My wife is demanding Law & Order memes.  I swear I really did type that right before she said “systemic racism.”

9:54: Trump is about to call himself the least racist person who ever lived.  Hitting update before he says it.

9:55:  I’d like to point out that I thought Barack Obama lost his first debate against McCain and against Romney.  So I’m generally not shy about saying it when I think Dems are losing debates.  Hillary is grinding Trump into a thin orange paste right now and he’s STILL defending stop and frisk.  Holy shit.



10:00:  “I was preparing for this debate.  And I’m also prepared to be the President of the United States.”  She’s been waiting for a chance to use that line.  He has no response at all.  He’s less manic now; he seems to be getting tired.

10:02:  She’s about to cut his balls off again.

10:03:  Have I made this clear yet?  I will be proud as hell to vote for this woman.

10:04:  He still hasn’t actually said “Barack Obama was born in the United States,” by the way.

10:05:  That should have been an applause line.  And Clinton’s team did nothing to advance the birther nonsense.  I was paying really fucking close attention, goddammit.  I would have noticed.

10:06: “Everyone got sued for it, and I settled the lawsuit without admission of guilt” is not a good defense, Donnie.  I can’t believe he’s not actually bleeding at this point.

suwpx2jobnn6ruqmg9hd10:09:  She’s leaving absolutely nothing on the table with this guy, and it’s all going to happen again twice more.

10:10:  Who or what is Ice?

10:11:  “As far as the cyber…”

10:12: Sure, let’s fat-shame nerds too while we’re at it, assholes.

10:13:  How the fuck is ISIS beating us at the Internet?  What the shit does that even mean?  STOP SAYING CYBER.  Does he even know how fucking stupid he sounds when he says that?

10:14: Holy shit, there’s only fifteen minutes left.  This was actually fun.  What the hell’s wrong with me?

10:15: The second I type that, my feed goes to shit.  DAMMIT!

10:16:  I get the feed back on and he’s yapping about “taking the oil” again.  I have never had the slightest idea what the hell “take the oil” means.  It ain’t like you can fly a giant biscuit over there and sop that shit up.  You can’t do it.  And he never gets called on it; I hope she does.

10:17:  It occurs to me that maybe my Twitter feed is actually somehow killing my internet connection because it’s moving at Goddamn lightspeed.  I shut it off.

10:19:  I may have blacked out for a second.  Why is he talking about NATO?


10:20:  He’s pronounced “terror” three different ways in the last thirty seconds.

10:22: What the hell is this “no one wants to call Sean Hannity” nonsense about?  They did an article in a major magazine?  But he doesn’t mention the magazine? tumblr_nlsosxLH3C1tew7o3o1_1280.png.jpeg

10:23: He says he has a better temperament than Clinton does and there is audible laughter in the audience.

10:24:  Ba-da-da DAT da!  Dat da-da da DIE da da!

10:26:  The weirdest thing about Trump tonight is how quiet he’s been while she’s been tearing him apart.  I don’t know if his attention is wandering or what but there are places where he SHOULD have been interrupting just to try to knock her off her game.  She just had two uninterrupted minutes and ripped his ass to shreds.


10:27: Seriously, how can he get away with constantly saying “We lose on everything!” and the Republicans just lap it up?

10:28:  He doesn’t know what “the current policy” is, Lester.

10:29: I kinda hope Clinton points out that he has no idea what policy Holt is talking about.  For the record, I actually don’t either, which is why I’m certain that Trump doesn’t.


10:33: CALL ME SON ONE MORE TIME it may be time for bed

10:35:  “Secretary Clinton, would you care to sautée Trump’s balls one more time?”

10:36:  “Why yes, Lester, I would.”

10:37: Okay we’re way past OH WAIT HE CANNOT BE TALKING ABOUT ROSIE O’DONNELL my bedtime and maybe it should be time for these people to stop talking now.  His defense just now appears to be “I was gonna say mean things but I decided not to.”

10:38:  He really shouldn’t have had to ask that question.  Trump, naturally, doesn’t answer the “Will you accept the result of the election?” question.  (Wait.  No.  He does at the last second.  Good.)

In summary:


It’s 5:15 AM

7659004_G.jpg…I’m awake, fuck it.  Not quite the 3:00 in the morning blues, but it’ll have to be close enough.

I am pretty sure that I have been sweating for 20 straight hours, guys.  Yesterday was a bit of a scorcher– I say “a bit” because 1) by historical standards it actually wasn’t really all that bad and 2) it’s going to be worse today, but the first thing I did when I got to work yesterday morning was help to unload an eighteen-wheeler full of furniture.  At the time I commented that it wasn’t actually that bad of a truck, and it wasn’t– mostly big, square boxes that aren’t difficult to balance on a dolly and very few sofas, which are impossible to balance right and are the bane of my existence.  What I wasn’t aware of was that for the next eleven hours of my work shift, constituting nearly 18000 steps and nearly eleven miles of walking, I was not ever going to actually stop sweating at any point.  Which may have accounted at least partially for my poor performance as a salesman yesterday, come to think of it.  I went through eight refills of the liter-sized water bottle I keep with me and never stopped feeling dehydrated.

I have blisters on my feet.  I have to do it all over again today.

Then I got home from work, said good night to my son, ate some dinner, watched PREACHER, and went to bed.  See anything missing?  For some reason, I declared myself too tired to take a shower, which was some seriously poor decision making right there.  Why am I typing on my blog and not in the shower right now, since I’m awake?  Well, my wife leaves for work way before I do and I’m letting her do her morning ablutions before I rinse the filth off my disgusting meat-shell.  I can smell myself, guys, and when I woke up this morning from a mild nightmare and had to get out of bed because I could hear a sound I couldn’t identify in the house, I came back to what was basically a pool of sweat in my fucking bed that I couldn’t make myself lie back down in.

The pillow is still awesome, though.

I will get used to this schedule, where I have three really long days to balance out two of what are basically half-days and two days off.  I’m not there yet, but I will be; I’m not worried about it.  But I’m wearing tennis shoes to work today, and when I get off from my half day tomorrow I am driving directly to the New Balance store in Granger, handing my credit card to the first salesperson who talks to me, and telling her that money is no object (how much can shoes possibly cost?) and to put something black on my feet that will make them feel like they are surrounded by love and honey and magic all day long.  Because my current dress shoes do not fit that qualification.  At all.

You think my bed’s dry yet?  Technically I don’t have to be up for another hour.

EDIT: just in case, for some reason, anyone doubts me: last night’s sleep and yesterday’s steps.  Today is going to be rough.