Monday, June 30, 2008

PRE-JOKER

A couple weeks ago I had ordered from Amazon the Hulk season 1, the Death of the Hulk, and the Flash TV series. It had finally arrived on Saturday, and since then I've been having a Flash marathon. I watched it when it was first on, and then the re-runs Sci Fi had for a time. Gotta say, it's a pretty damn good show. Yeah, sure, it has it's corny moments, but Batman it ain't. Plus I think it served as Mark Hamil's audition for the Joker in the cartoon, as his rendition of the Trickster was a live-action version right down to the voice. Good stuff.

I had some DSL trouble when I got home. Worked last night, but today, nothing. Rebooted everything and still nothing, so I called Verizon. Chick walked me through cleaning the thing up, and soon the web kicked on by itself when we were halfway through. Probably got screwed up some from the t-storm we had. Damn technology.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

HEROES NEVER DIE. APPARENTLY.

I get a call from Keith this morning that confused the hell outta me. He was aplogizing for not voting on NYH in a timely manner due to being unable to get on Dimestore. I was like WTF? Apparently, in between the latest crash and Ian's slow restoration of things NYH has become involved in the veto talks for round 3. What that means is the judges get to examine the projects and where they landed up after voting has closed, then decide if there's a project that deserves to be bumped higher based on potential and merit, resulting in the bottom-most project of each category getting knocked down a position. That's right, somehow NYH got itself nominated to be moved up to the anthology cover feature, and somehow also managed to win over Idol's Simon, Roger, whose biggest complaint was my powers were all been there, done that and thus killed any appeal for him. And, with Keith's eventual vote, NYH will be unanimously voted up. What in the hell is happening here?

So, basically, I've gone into hyper-drive doing up page sketches for Ginny to work from as well as tweaking the script some. I didn't finish all that, but I did send her all the reference crap I gave Paul. Originally, she wanted to finish the other 9 pages and just redo page 1, but I've decided I wanna tweak 2 and 3 some to make them a little spacier for the dialogue. Paul left me with some salvagable material, but it needs to be redone in Ginny's style for unity. So much for working on other things before I leave Thursday...

Progress was also hampered by having to go see gma. Yesterday was her bday but they couldn't get there. So, we went today and I used it as an opportunity to get to the store to drop off Craig's books and get his money for the next batch which is already sitting in my box waiting. Lotsa heavy rain today too. Making up for Thursday and Friday's lack, I guess.

Britt has been getting herself pretty busy lately, so contact has been pretty much minimal. She did, however, find some time to call me today. Twice, in fact, although the first time wasn't really so much for pleasant conversation, but a call is a call. She's gonna tweak a story I've heard about since I met her and send it along to me so I can help her polish it off for the contest she wants to enter. Kinda funny that in talking about how many directions it's apparently gone in story-wise that I mentioned how sometimes life has a series of subplots that could take a while to be resolved, and here's one of my life's little subplots coming to a resolution. What that means is I've been trying to get her to let me read it since I heard about it, and been offering the help her out and do my editor thang. Gotta love how things work out.

Friday, June 27, 2008

ROOKIE MISTAKES

I'm like a rookie lately. Today's mistake came in I scanned all the packages for my second stop in the loading dock but couldn't get to one, and forgot to scan it when I delivered the packages. Ah well, at least I got the best diesel for today. The mechanic tried to stick me with my truck again saying it was working just fine. Uh, no. It's had a problem for months, I couldn't start it yesterday. He's keeping it until it runs like it should. If it so much as sputters when I get it back, I'm throwing it out of service again and management can deal with me.

I FINALLY finished uploading my list into the Comics Price Guide database. Now, all that's left to do is go through all the titles and change the conditions of the books that need changing, as well as add the miscellaneous new books I may have gotten after finishing a particular letter. Then I can go about getting them to add whatever issues or titles might be missing. I'll say this much; currently my collection would be worth 48Gs if all the books I had were in perfect condition. I'm also missing about 600 books between my lists, so I'll have to see what I may have missed somehow.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

DEAD ON DEPARTURE

My truck's had a problem with it's engine ever since it came back from the body shop. Basically, I needed to get a running start in order to keep it from sputtering and dying. If I got stuck at the intersection I'd be pretty much sitting and revving until I could go. Usually, that fixes it up within a block or so, but today as I got closer to my route it was acting up again. Then, when I tried to move my truck closer to the loading dock it kept dying on me. Finally, when I was trying to head back, I couldn't get it to stay on and eventually even turn on. Well, guess the mechanic hasta fix it NOW, doesn't he? I've only told him about it several thousand times.

It was supposed to pour today. It only rained slightly in the early afternoon. So, I went for a bike ride. Riding when the weather doesn't live up to the forecasts is the best, 'cause since everyone pretty much planned for a rain day there was BARELY anyone on the bike path. Too bad my plan was impromptu as well or else I'da called up Tina to see if she was free to do the bike thing. Ah well, I still need to buy a water bottle and holder for the extra bike anyways...neglected to do so when I had it fixed. For that I could swing by the closer shop. Shouldn't cost all that much, right? In case tomorrow was a repeat I texted her to call me up if she wanted to go. Heh now watch, tomorrow WILL rain.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

SHORT OF PERFECTION

It was almost a perfect day.

Went out with one extra stop and still managed to bust my ass and make it with 10 mins to spare...enough time to go and help the usual idiot. Although, I didn't realize he did another block as well so it took me a while to get that one package delivered. Good thing I locked it in. But no, the hassle of helping wasn't what killed the perfection of today. Everything was perfect, from the elevator to people being available to sign. What went wrong was I got back only to find out I didn't scan 4 packages. And I know which ones they were too. They were 4 rolling suitcases (one of which almost creamed a lady's baby as she tried to pass me as I was moving them) that the mail guy took in when the elevator guy brought them up. He never took the packages I dropped off later and wasn't there when I came to deliver, so I delivered those and completely forgot about the suitcases. It was a stupid mistake and I was pissed at myself for it. Not as "anger management" pissed like my 'rents like to say, but pissed enough to make me decide I wanna get back to the happy-go-lucky state I was in for most of last year.

This must be the week hell froze over. Friday, Tina told me something she alluded to but didn't want to tell me for fear I'd go and kill someone. She didn't realize while I wish I could've, I would only do so really if the problem was immediate. As it stands, she had it dealt with so there was nothing for me to really be concerned with. For now. Now, if only I could get her to tell me what this thing she had in high school was about involving the initials WC... Then Monday sis actually told me something she didn't want to due to the personal nature of the subject matter. Didn't think she'd ever give that up. Today, Britt continued this new trend by asking me for some help with writing. That's huge. All these make me wonder what's next?

ANGRY MAN

As most of you know, I spent the better part of a decade working in supermarkets and dealing with the stupidest of the stupid customers. So, you can imagine my thoughts in regard to this one asshole at Pathmark tonight who knocked the top off of a cardboard stand display and proceeded to walk away after grabbing his crap. At least he tried to, till I yelled out "Yo! Pick it up!" And he came back and did. Gotta tell ya, you've no idea how good that felt to do.

So, apparently, I have anger issues. At least that's what my 'rents like to say. I'll admit my temper has been flaring up a bit more lately than it used to, but the only time I get a real serious flare up is when the 'rents give me the anger issue thing at the slightest hint of agitation. What, I'm not allowed to get agitated anymore? The hell. So, they open their mouths and make me angry and thus make it worse. Yeah, I got anger issues. It's called living at home. I'm perfectly fine everywhere else. At least I was; it's starting to spill over into every day life. I can barely focus on work as it is with being tired, trying to work with them around is stressing me the hell out. I'll need next weekend just to reclaim my sanity. I seriously can't deal with this arrangement much longer. It's affecting my creativity and starting to get to my health. Getting angry used to be fun. Now it just gives me a headache.

Work was surprisingly easy. I had all the stops I was supposed to have, even taken one from Carlos two blocks away, and I managed to finish 15 minutes early. Usually when I'm at goal it takes me until 10:30 or closer to. Either things just ran very smooth or I'm better than I think.

And now, continuing a tribute to a more famous angry individual:

Monday, June 23, 2008

SMILING UP AT US

GREEK KRYPTONITE

There's one thing no Greek person can resist (besides Fetta cheese). Of course, I'm talking about family. No matter what they do or when they do it, it can turn into a big family production. The 4th is apparently no different. Relevance? Well, seeing as Tina's Greek she's got relatives coming in from THREE states to visit her aunt in Staten Island for 4th festivities. That, of course, means she's not coming with me next weekend. I had anticipated the familial snag, and wondered why she didn't have such plans already when we first discussed this arrangement. Oh well, so I'm flying solo as sis'll be with her family in PA and D's working the 4th and I'm completely out of friends. It's cool; I'd be cleaning most of the first day anyways and it's a good test run for how it'd be if I eventually moved up there. Isolation practice. Be nice if I'd get the word I requested if my other friends'd be there...

In lieu of a GPS that Britt needs, she had me write her a physical letter as she likes getting snail mail. I tried to tailor it to her tastes, and it apparently worked as she said it had the perfect blend of sarcasm, wit, wisdom and insults (or something to that effect...I paraphrased). Well, good, glad she liked the first letter I've written in years (excluding the one to my cousin about why it took me a YEAR to answer hers). I'm sure there will be others, so I warned her to keep in mind that sequels tend to suck.

Motivation came hard today. I went to bed early and yet still ended up pretty tired. I managed to get one of my reviews done with sis' help on edits, and I think I got an idea for an article as the others I was working on have stalled. I need to finish the other book I'm reviewing to get that done all by the end of tomorrow. Ugh. So much for trying to get ahead on things.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

ONCE, TWICE, THREE TIMES A HULK

I hadn't planne on seeing Hulk three times, but with Tommy and D having conflicting schedules that's just how it worked out.

Last night I met Tommy. We saw the movie and he enjoyed it as most seem to. In between we talked about various things from comics to PS3. Today was D's turn, and of course the dip was LATE. I figure he was out a little too late and overslept. So, I snagged our tickets for when he decided to show up and we had to find our seats in an EXTREMELY dark theater.

After, we passed by the drug store so I could get some powder to deal with my latest case of heat rash (prevent it all ya want, it still gets ya! I'm like chronic ever since that goddamn 6 mile walk 2 years ago!) and then we headed back to my place where ma gave him the rundown of the apartment. We sweetened the already sweet deal by saying he could use whatever furniture I was taking that he needed in the interum of his getting his own and my actually having a reason to use it myself. Seems like he wants to do it, so we'll see what happens come the projected fall completion date ma set for the place. NOW, all they need to do is find an effing storage space and we can clear the shit out somewhat. I hafta find time to clip up all the newspapers I saved for the specific articles in which I saved them; most of them being 9/11.

Well, it's official: I'll be going upstate. Like the 'rents'd pass up a chance to have me do all THEIR work. Pops is gonna write me a list of what I hafta do with instructions, and gonna be waiting to hear from Tina if she's going with me or not. Odds are pretty good she's not. We'll see.

Friday, June 20, 2008

YES, I'M SINGLE

A couple of weeks ago I was asked how it was I'm still single. Two months ago, I was asked how it was that I wasn't married. I, of course, like to make jokes on the fact. The more I think about it honestly, the more I think I begin to see why I am still, and why I'm having such difficulty with friends.

I think I've cut myself off. Not just for the sake of doing so, mind you. I think because I'm so intent on leaving this shithole that in order to make the transition as painless as possible I've subconsciously tried to prevent the formation of any more roots. I mean, I've got a few friends that I barely see so it's not like our relationships will change all that much if I'm suddenly not local, but if I made new friends that actually had as much time as I do to hang out? And I guess I could technically still attempt dating, but what if I end up in a happy relationship with someone who really doesn't want to live where I want? I mean I can't end something good JUST for that, can I?

So, yeah, it kind of makes sense. In a way, it's really a good idea. The more I have to lose, the more I'll miss. However, it can also end up being a bad idea. What if I'm stuck here forever? Then I've completely cut myself off, waited too long to START dating, and I end up a miserable lonely old man. Add to that problem that I can't remember the last time I met a female who was single, if I thought I might be interested in her or not, and I haven't really met any guys I'd actually want to hang with on a regular basis. Maybe some from my CAG crew, but I just don't see it happening. Basically, when D and Tina get married I'm screwed.

This all came up as part of a conversation with Tina today, who invited me to go out walking again after I IMed her. We hit the bike path, sat and talked, headed up to the avenue so she could use the rest room, then grab a bite, then head on home. We had fun as usual, talking about this and that and laughing. She finally fessed up to why she didn't want to tell me about something, which ended up not being as big a deal as I'm sure she thought it would be. And of course the topic of relationships came up and she was giving me advice on what to do and such, like get a laptop and do some of my work in a Starbucks or something. I've considered it (not so much Starbucks 'cause I'm not a coffee person, but the park or a diner or something) but I dunno. I'm so behind on all my work as is. We'll see.

One thing that came from the night was, well aside from the secret of how to get her to hang out more (which, honestly, hasn't really worked much in the past but maybe things have changed), but also that she might come upstate with me 4th of July. I had considered going up even with my 'rents to maybe see some of my old friends who supposedly still go up there around then. But with gma still in Florida till August, someone needed to stay behind and take care of the cats. But, they ain't going up that week (or maybe at all this summer) so I may as well. Only catch is I'd have to do all the opening shit myself. Oh well, hafta learn sometime, right?

Sadly, the day wasn't as productive as I'd've liked. Sinus pressure hit me bad after I got home, so I needed a nap. That did the trick, at least. Gotta spend the whole weekend doing articles and scripts, in between all my movie fun.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

MOVIE TROUBLE

Is making plans always such a bitch?

Okay, so I missed seeing Hulk with D because of the meeting and father's day, so we were gonna the following week. Tommy comes along and wants to see it too, so I decide to combine the outings into one. Only catch it is hasta be at night 'cause Tommy works. Alright, Saturday night, we got Hulk and Sunday me and D would do Indy. Great.

Well, D comes along and tells me he forgot he already had plans, can we do Sunday. I ask Tommy about Sunday and he's fine with it, so now it's Hulk on Sunday and Indy Saturday. Except D also forgot a doctor's appointment on Sat, and Tommy couldn't do Sunday.

So, as it stands, I'm doing Indy Sat morning, Hulk with Tommy Sat night, and Hulk with D on Sun morning. It's a damn good thing I liked Hulk.

And don't get me started on my BBQ. I thought I picked SUCH a great date. Two friends will be away for it and one has a wedding so far. That's three down, and considering I didn't invite all that many three is a big number. I know Tommy, Lenny, Craig and D are guaranteed, Jess almost definitely, Tina will be in Greece, and I still haven't heard back from some CAGers who will either not respond or wait till the last minute to do so. As long as they give me enough time to get the food.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

LOSING THE PAST

So more of my past seems to be slipping away.

It was announced a few weeks ago that Penguin Supermarkets would be closing the Key Foods around here, including the one I worked at. A confusing decision since they seem to be re-opening one near my house. I don't really care much about that, it was a shit job. However, a job I actually liked, my first one that wasn't connected to someone I already knew, is gone as well. Meat Village is closing to make way for some kind of Chinese pet shop. Or, rather, I guess it's already closed as one of my former co-workers is now working at Picardi's on 5th. Ma told me that, and I saw him when I stopped in for cold cuts today. I liked that job. It was fun for me, although they didn't do the business to keep me and the owner's grandson so I got let go, and I couldn't get back the next year when I started Waldbaum's. But, just a few more pieces of my history evaporated from sight.

For you Travolta fans out there, Meat Village can be seen in a background of a scene of Saturday Night Fever.

Tommy came to meet me at the comic shop for once, although it wasn't much of a hangout. I was focused on getting my books and was a little too tired to be sociable. Actually, I wasn't even focused enough 'cause they guy had put last week's books in my box, not realizing I had already picked them up and I ended up grabbing one I already had and putting one I needed away. Gonna see if I can't do an exchange again like I did once before.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

DREDGING UP CRAP

I had sent Mark a couple of pitches I had sitting around; the horror I wrote and the one I did for Britt. Well, he liked the horror but said the other needed to be tweaked some. He also said that it seemed like the intro to a series, which got me thinking... Why not? The entry I was originally considering for next year's Idol I've decided to try to submit to Free Lunch Comics to see if it's something they'd want, so maybe I'll use that other one to try my luck at Idol again. I mean, hell, we could use more female superheres out there. So, over the weekend, I'll have to bang out those two concepts so I can shop for additional talent. For Idol, at least, I wanna make sure my artist has MONTHS to draw pages, characters, promo art and more. That's if I can even find one. Trying my hand at optimism here...how'm I doing?

So I had an interesting dream last night starring someone I never expected, being my ex. Y'know, I don't really think about her until someone mentions her or I can comment on a situation with a past experience. Otherwise, it's like she never existed. So it's odd she was in not one, but two dreams as Tommy's new girlfriend. Weird. Told Liz about it and she said a couple of the elements could point to maybe she's having kids and that there's some unresolved issues. Meh. The only unresolved issue I have is with someone else and is currently ongoing. I prefer to think of it more as my subconscious reconizing that it's almost July, and July was a big month for us. All I know is I've dealt with all that crap already and it's over. 'Nuff said!

The chat was brief tonight. Ian had messed something up with the site's coding and needed to shut it down so he could work on it, meaning we all had to vacate the chat. Ah well, I spent most of it going to Subway for a sandwich that I wanted for lunch, but held off getting since pops went to the doctor in the city and I figgered he'd come back wanting to get food. And he did. Which he got for himself. Bastard.

Monday, June 16, 2008

STATE OF AFFAIRS

On Friday I had checked out readmission to Hunter, and discovered if you missed a semester you needed to submit a form for that. So I printed it out, filled it out, then mailed it out. Hopefully, they'll get it and process it in time and I can be back in school this fall.

Ginny, my letterer and first choice as artist on NYH, has decided to put her hat back in the ring since now the deadlines are more lax. BUT, if she can change some of my costumes. I told her I'd see her sketches, but I already updated and revamped those suits BEFORE the contest. I'm pretty happy with them and I don't think they need any changes.

Yes, that was the theater Tina and Maya went to. I found that amusingly ironic.

And I'm still Batman. That is all.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

LOST AND REFLUX

I had been planning a birthday present for Britt for some time now, and was reaffirmed in my thinking by her resolution that she needed what I wanted to get. However, as I have absolutely no concept of boundaries I figured just flat out sending it early woulda caused some serious reprocussions so I had to ask. Basically, she ended up attempting to guilt me out of it.

That, however, is not the point of this post. The point is, in attempting to do this thing, I was looking for a card she had sent me that had her address on it. I had it out by my computer when I sent her a copy of CAG 7 and I coulda sworn I put it away. I go to look for it, it's gone. The card I kept with it was found on my scanner, but Britt's card is nowhere to be found. So, I'm hoping, that once again the assholes got into my stuff and moved it around or a cat knocked it down. Not-so-secret option C, that it's now trash, I'm trying to NOT consider.

This comes on top of me losing all our texts from my phone. Over the weekend at the con, my inbox was registering as being almost full (2 years and almost 2,000 texts later since I never deleted any) so I experimented with locking texts to see if they'd be kept from deletion. Satisfied with my test subjects, I proceeded to lock all the texts I wanted to keep for posterity's sake and then emptied my inbox. Know what stayed? All my goddamn test subjects. That's it. The ones I really DIDN'T want to keep. ARGH! Damn technology.

So, at this point, I've basically lost anything she's sent me. Yeeeeeeah, great friend I am, right? I'll be looking for that card through the mess that is my apartment this week. No piece of trash left unturned!

To really top off the day, the Carvel I had last night with ma appears to have cost me some serious discomfort today. It felt like someone shoved a spear straight through my abdomen. It was either serious indigestion or a case of acid reflux brought on by the dairy. I guess cheeseburgers, grilled cheese and two servings of ice cream (NOT all at the same time, thank you) is a bad combo. Damn I hate getting old...

Saturday, June 14, 2008

HULK SMASH!!!!

The meeting was jam-packed today! We had 25 people show up, a record considering the trend lately. We had a new member attend as well as three potentials, two of whom joined up once it was over. The holdout said she would once things slowed down in September. We'll see.

Next up was the movie. We got two more in the group this time and proceeded to the same theater after lunch. James led us there again, but somehow got lost this time eating up all our extra time. I wanted to get a soda again, and since I was already online was gonna get Jemir his Natcho combo. However, the bitch in front of us kept adding shit to her order and the lady serving was a moron, so it took MUCH longer than it should've. I was about to Hulk out right there. Eventually we got our stuff and joined the others in the theater, luckily still showing previews.

The movie was good, MUCH better than the last but not quite the quality of Iron Man. I'll enjoy seeing it again next weekend with D and Tommy, though. Loved all the influence the TV show had on it. It was also jam-packed with easter eggs for fans of all kinds. If you knew ANYTHING about the Hulk, you could find something. Dorks, like me, however, found almost everything.

On the way home, I found a poster for Hellboy II indicating it'll be coming out the same time as our NEXT meeting, which means I need to do some theater hunting around our two new locations for July while the school is closed on break. Had we not taken the week off in May we woulda been nicely timed fer Iron Man too. It's almost like they planned these releases around CAG. Wasn't that nice?

I also confirmed today that pics Tina's friend Maya posted on her Facebook of their last movie outing last month was at the same theater. I just E-Mailed Tina for confirmation since Maya didn't ever respond to my question. Pretty funny that we were all there a week apart.

Friday, June 13, 2008

DIVIDE AND CONQUER

Rory actually had a good idea yesterday. To up his stops, he took ONE package from mine that had multiples. This upped his count and kept mine healthy. However, I ended up having to HELP him with the stops I gave him, making the whole effort utterly pointless. This is gonna be a pain.

Oh, and I got paid for my sick days. See, if you don't use 'em, you get paid for them at the end of the fiscal year. Well, I didn't use any, so I got paid for 5 days at my current rate, which basically added up to just over my average paycheck, plus my regular which was double the normal. Well, so glad I got that extra money, 'cause I lost almost HALF in taxes, getting just barely what my regular was. Isn't that a bitch?

After work, I headed uptown to check out parks for our BBQ in August. The most important criteria was that they be near a subway, for those who had trouble parking last year at Corona Park. I was thus forced to narrow the list down to 4 of about 9 parks, however I eliminated one as I didn't feel like schlepping all the way to the other side of the island to check out one little park. It was also more of a haul from the 6 train to Jefferson Park than any of the others. And I wasn't gonna make everyone take the godforsaken 6. Gah!

So we've got Mornignside, St. Nicholas and Riverside as the contenders. All had their pros and cons. I nixed Riverside because the picnic area was this little round patch that really didn't offer many spreading-out opportunities. Great view, nice park, but eh. St. Nicholas I REALLY liked. It had a great rustic look and rocks for me to climb (which I did). However, as Sue wanted to attend all the slopes the grassy parts take on wouldn't have been too good for her wheel chair, and aside from the one large area all the other BBQ areas were all small little slabs of land right next to playgrounds. Didn't think we'd want non-CAG kids running around and into our stuff. Morningside won the battle! Sure, it's not as spaceous as Corona was, but it's got nice scenery, decent shading in the table areas, near the playground for the CAG kids but not RIGHT on it, and even enough survaces so Sue won't go rolling. Sure, it is by far the farthest from the subway of the three parks, but the walk isn't all that bad.

So the park is set. I'll just hafta run it by the crew and send out the application, then work on getting a BBQ grill, some charcoal, and some basic needs. How I'm gonna cart shit there, I dunno. Definitely ain't gonna attempt to drive and find parking. We'll see what the day brings.

By the way, as much as I love that kind of exploration, it would've been SO much better if it wasn't so fricken hot. It's cooler than it has been, but goddamn. When did I move to Texas and why don't I get to see Britt more? :P

Thursday, June 12, 2008

WEBS WEAVED

I thought about a character I sort of created back in the late 90s. Doing my desired alternative ending to the Spider-Man Clone Saga, I used it to introduce what was basically my own version of Spider-Girl...long before What If? #105 ever came out. My origin, however, was a bit more artificial following along the lines of how Magik came to be (which of course is riddled with mistakes as I didn't know as much then as I do now about it). I had her brainwashed to kill her father, then reformed, then moved to Seattle to find her own way in what would've been a spin-off series that I drew the first few pages of. What was funny especially was the fact both me and Marvel gave our gals a form of psychic power. Oh, and I also kept her the Scarlet Spider...another similarity as both gals had Ben Reilly-inspired costumes. Proof that in the 90s, I was a bit ahead of my time (how good a thing that really is really depends on what kind of comic fan you ask...).

Another day of stops being taken from me, this time leaving me with 11. I ended up getting done 15 minutes early where no one needed the help. Frankly, I'm surprised at the volume we HAVEN'T been getting. With a Jewish holiday Monday and Tuesday, I expected a lot more to nail us at least today.

It was a cooler day but I just wasn't gonna make the trek uptown to explore. I came home and sacked out instead. But, I did do the research and, keeping in mind parks near subways was the criteria, eliminated more than half the available list, including one I had planned on. Damn. Well, hopefully these parks have nice areas or else I'll just say screw it and set us up in Prospect Park.

I need to spend a few hours on Amazon tomorrow, doing "market research" for how the site works for when we try and get our books on there; see what links back to what and such. I shouldn'ta volunteered for that, I got no time as it is. Dumb me. I also did some research and discovered I needed to send in a readmittance form to the school for missing a semester. Filled that out and will have it in the mail by tomorrow. Hopefully I did it right 'cause I didn't understand two sections it was asking for. Well, hopefully they process it quick enough that I could run up there and hand-deliver another copy before the deadline. I hate school.

The cap on the night, and the highlight, was a phone call from Britt. I had just mentioned to Liz about not getting to talk to her today and BAM! Phone rings. I love it when things like that happen. The first few minutes were a little frantic, though, as she had gotten herself turned around and lost in town. Poor girl has no sense of direction at all. But, that's okay. I had my own duh moment when I was gathering up my stuff to head off in back to get ready for bed and wondered why I couldn't find my phone. My phone, by the way, that I was currently talking on and had clipped to my shorts. D'oh!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

1:30

What the hell is wrong with me lately? Last few nights, I've woken up at 1:30 like my alarms went off or something, thinking it was 4. And yet...it wasn't. It's a very annoying and exhausting occurrence.

So we did the whole thing with stops being taken from me to fill Rory to his goal, reducing me from 16 to 10 stops. I also took a stop from Carlos, but couldn't take more since he was already on the road as usual. Now what in the hell sense does this make? In order for TWO people to make goal, one has to go out short. And no matter how Damien tries to explain the logic behind it, it continues to make no sense. We don't have the volume to allow us to reach our goals, and by taking from other people all we're doing is putting the same amount of trucks on the road with less work in them, and having two or MORE couriers doing the SAME route. This is efficient? This is cutting costs? This is stupid beurocratic morons living by some goddamn numbers on some goddamn papers without even CONSIDERING the environmental factors that make them mean precisely dick. Traffic. Construction. Freight guys. None of this is ever considered, not even the thing that really should: piece count. You can only fit so much on a handtruck wich means extra trips which means more time lost.

Well, the heatwave has finally broke. It was still hot as hell, but not as bad as the last few days. I got some reading done over a sandwich wrap from this new place on 5th. Apparently, the way I usually make a sandwich is called The Three Stooges by this joint. Wasn't bad, pretty standard. I'd be inclined to eat there again, once I try the burgers. I need a nice cool day, though (and one where I don't feel exhausted as hell) to go visit NYC's BBQ-able parks so I can set up the CAG BBQ for August. Wanna pick a nice, scenic spot where traffic noise won't be too big a deal.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

HEAT WAVE

Who knew the last two days'd be the start of a heat wave? Today the heat index was upwards of 110. As a result, the job supplied us all with water and ice pops to keep us hydrated. The pops were pretty good, actually, although the flavor faded too fast as ya kept going on them.

So there's a new old thing being implimented where Rory's supposed to take stuff from me to reach his goal and I'm supposed to take stuff from Carlos to reach mine. This wouldn't be a problem if Carlos' route wasn't mainly one building on a block where there's barely any parking. What do they expect me to do, take stuff for that building and spend 20 mins trying to get off my block and find parking that most likely won't exist or walk it all from my truck to there? It makes no sense, no matter what the goddamn numbers tell these retards. I had to take an outside stop from him, and I took 4 from Rory which'd force him to go on break earlier if nobody needed help. Luckily, the elevators were in my favor. My only real struggle was this very large crate for one of my stores. It was light and flat, but big and awkward.

I lied. My real struggle came tonight when I went to set up my AC in my room. It was stored in my gma's bedroom next door, which was blocked by most of the crap we moved for the renovation. I had to dig that out, then cart it through the porch into our apartment into my room, then had to clean it of all the dust the morons let fly all over the place. And, of course, I had to do the balancing act since one of the wheels broke off the first time I took it out of the box. Fun times.

Monday, June 09, 2008

IDOL-LOCKED

There ended up being a service disruption from Memphis, so my route was absorbed. However, Lis hadda be somewhere so I needed to stay to man the office when people came back from the road. In the meantime, I helped get late freight ready to be shuttled out and checked up on my DG cabinet to make sure nothing was missing before I went to do my report next month. But, given the change in situation, it looked like I mighta been waiting around for nothing. Just when I was about to call it quits and go home, people began to show. Ah well, free 6 hours with very little work...I ain't gonna complain.

The plan was I'd drop out of Idol and maybe publish NYH on my own later. I made this announcement to the chat, and was told I couldn't quit. So, instead, I'm finishing out the round and they're gonna help me find a new artist to get it done. Fine with me, I just want it over with. It's suggested I get the first 3 pages entirely redone so as not to give Paul any credit. My only problem with that is the amount of work Alex put into them. Wade suggested something I already considered, putting them as extra feature content in the back. That's why I've taken up a lot of my computer's memory saving all the crap we've done. Figure that'd be cool if I get the chance to do it. I'm still gonna follow Liz's suggestion and turn the other scripts into novellas to potentially sell at convention tables. We'll see how well that goes.

Also, don't think I cleaned my AC good enough yesterday. Was smelling and tasting the dust until I went to sleep. Blech.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

THE QUEST FOR WHITE CASTLE

And so ends the second day of the con.

It was fairly dead most of the day 'cause of the Puerto Rican Day festivities, but it had it's busy moments. Not that WE saw any of it. The busiest our area got was when the line formed to get pictures with Richard Dreyfuss (who I still can't understand what was doing at a con). Way I heard it, he was whisked in and out, and his pics were more than the other celebs there. Malcolm McDowell (recently of HEROES fame), however, walked around like he was just anyone else. I can respect a guy like that. I only caught a glimpse of him briefly as he was leaving.

Since we missed it yesterday, today was White Castle day! I went around and got orders from everyone I could find then headed out to get the goods. Along the way, I stopped off to get some ketchup for the burgers. Best place I could find was a small convenience store right next to it. The jackasses in there had some NERVE to charge $3.50 for a 24 oz. bottle. I had to take it 'cause Keith, one of the orderees, wanted to head out for home soon so I didn't really have time to hunt down a more reasonably priced bottle. I carted back the grub, dished it out, and sat and ate my share with Keith at his little table upstairs. He had hoped to duplicate some success he had at a smaller show, but it turned out to be a really disappointing weekend for him. At least he had company, being next to Kirk's table.

I didn't get to spend much time with Liz this time around, which was by far the funnest part of Comiccon for me. Yesterday, she met up with some locals she plays online games with and spent a good part of the day with them. I tagged along for a bit but got separated by my bin diving. Today, she stayed with Alex and his wife out in Westbubblefuck until it was safe to bypass all the PR things going on. Basically, she didn't get to the con until a little after 3. I also went to meet her at the train as she said she was taking the 6 straight there instead of transferring closer. Figured with the heat and all I might need to help her with her stuff, but it was fine. Although, shoulda seen me trying to cover all the exits to the station there. I had a hunch she'd take the 32nd street exit, which she did, but stood vigil by the 33rd. Good thing she waited to be last going up the stairs or I'da never seen or caught her.

We had a visitor at our table; Rob Kutner, one of the staff writers from the Daily Show. He had gone and made his own comedy book about survival after the apocalypse, Apocalypse How, and Rachel volunteered him space to try and get some sales. She also put the works on him to get him interested in the group, and I snagged his E-Mail to give him the info in case he wanted to come to the meeting. One step closer to making Colbert an honory member of CAG! Heh not really, but this is how ya network.

Speaking of networking, Lindsay was quite the hit. She's got a very outgoing and bright personality, so she drew in a lot of folks and basically just took charge whenever she was left at the table. Unfortunately, getting to know her will be slightly delayed as she'll be doing a show (she's an actor) in St. Louis until November. But, ya know, a few more like her in a recruitment function CAG could be bristling with members within a month.

So what were the highlights of the show? Well, despite the sucky spot next to the supply area, we managed to make the most of it by stealing some of the water they put in the fridge thanks to the AC being shit and us having a nice, humid, weekend. Kirk also gave us some lightsabres that he was selling, which I made full use of in my sleepy/bored state. I eventually gave those away to some lady who turned out to be a school teacher, but Liz walked away with a nice double lightsabre we found laying around. And then there was Mike, the guy who runs the show. He basically rushes around all over the place, and lord help ya if ya got hit by the psycho 'cause you'd be going down. And he looked extra psychotic since he spent most of today in Joker make-up.

We decided to bail before the con ended, even though we ended up staying till then thanks to packing. See, Keith left some of his stuff behind expecting Ed to be there today, which he wasn't, so Shawnti, Liz and the Soares had to find a way to cram it into their stuff. I took a couple things, and Shawnti's mad packing skills took care of the rest. Then came the fun part of trying to get them all a cab back to Grand Central, as Sue is wheelchair-bound and thus needed the specific type of cab to accomodate her. Well, it took about 45 mins and just as I was about to get them bus info there, a limo pulled up and offered them a deal. So, they got to head for the train in style. Lucky bastards.

I was tired, sore and hot. Wish I could say my night ended better, but Britt came on and I ended up pissing her off. I piss her off at least once a month, and we missed last month's so it was about due. Not that I actually WANT it to happen...that's the LAST thing I want. But, it happens. Unfortunately. So, I can't say I had the greatest day, but hopefully this week bears some improvement. Life lesson I NEVER seem to get: never, EVER talk to people while I'm hot and tired.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

BITE THE BIG APPLE

It's quite funny how sometimes references from the day before can play over to the next. I forget the basis of the convo, but yesterday on the sort I was talking to one of the guys about something that was discussed the day before with Britt. Today, I came across for sale at the Con the Batmobile toy from the first movie. I was just talking to Liz about that being among my missing toys that are supposedly in my basement. Maybe I shoulda bought it. $15 too much?

Yes, today was the Big Apple Con. Much like last time, I went to go meet Liz at Grand Central when she came in. Unfortunately, it didn't work out quite as planned as I ended up having to go allllllll the way back from the train to use the bathroom, then go allllllllll the way back to the train to get there. Made it pretty quick, though, but she still ended up waiting 15 mintues for me. Could tell today was gonna be humid as hell as I felt the heat slowly beginning to cook me as I walked, despite it being overcast most of the morning.

In exchange for doing a panel, the con gave us two free tables. Two free tables located right at the front of the lines when people come in to go back around to the front for the escalators. Prime spot, right? Not so much. We were next to a supply closet and fridge full of water for workers that were constantly gone into, and once no more people were coming into the con our business was pretty much shot. We did some to be sure, according to Sue, but by far I know that the New York show went much better for us. The con was as big a clusterfuck as ever. Miscommunication and such. Liz couldn't even get herself a name badge 'cause apparently too many people got them from our group. Sheeyah, right...there weren't even the 20 people they claimed were there! Not to mention it's really become more of a glorified flea market...

Finally got to make my first CAG panel; the women of CAG! All but one of the women were there, including a recent addition I had no clue about. I knew her from Facebook because Rachel had cross-friended me towards her, but I knew not she joined CAG. This is a problem I hope to have addressed by Finger when he does the revamped CAG site. Anyways, we had a full panel with two of the three Micheles, Steph from CT, Liz, Shawnti, Sue and the new girl Lindsay. Rachel moderated and the gals all talked about what got them into comics, some of their inspirations, and if being a woman plays a roled in what they do. Rachel said later that she was told the panel was very well-attended. I thought it was kinda empty, but what do I know. I took some pics and Keith video taped, as well as a couple other guys. Was also surprised Tom showed as we hadn't seen him for two meetings. I thought the ladies did a good job overall, even Liz who was all nervous about it. People really need to start listening to me.

In an effort to NOT bring home another billion comics, I created a shopping list of specific books I needed to fill the holes in story arcs and what not. I only found one set of 50 cent bins, and proceeded to spend a few hours going through each and every box. Not only did I get to check some books off the list, but I found some other gems I had been looking for and never thought I'd find. At least for cheap. We're talking books that are, at the cheapest, $10. Also, having a conversation with Jemir about Spider-Ham, once again bred some interesting results as in the bins I found the first issue of said pork hero. Very odd how that happens. Somehow, though, despite all that limitation I did I STILL ended up taking a box home. Oy! Not a big box, but still.

We had planned to do White Castle after the con, but since Rachel wanted to do chinese and nobody was able to make her birthday hangout on Thursday we all decided to go postponning WC till tomorrow's lunch. We did score some better Nathans next to the hotel, though, so that was an improvement. Half the group already left for Chinatown before going to the MoCCA party after their own convention, and the rest of us who were left went to the nearby place. When we were finished, Liz headed off with Alex and his wife to crash at their place, while everyone else went their own way and I headed for home. Now the fun part of listing these books. Gah.

I ended last night with a phone call to Britt just before I went to sleep. That's my favorite way to go to sleep; all smiles from talking to her. I think I sleep better after that, honestly. Although, I was a little underslept today since I kept it going a bit longer than I should've, but whatever. Sleep I can do when I'm dead, talking to her I'll enjoy now.

Friday, June 06, 2008

SCHOOL BLUES

I got my SVA course catalogue today. Apparently, for the first semester they want you to take a pre-planned block of courses. Sure, they give you a selection, but what sucks is in every option there's at least one or two classes during the day, which, as we all, know, I can't do. Then I finally found out how much a semester would cost (previously missing from everything I've looked at so far): 13 GRAND! Needless to say, I went ballistic. Some catalogue flinging was involved. Fuck this, I'm gonna eat the $500 enrollment fee I sent and tell them to kiss my ass. I'll see if Hunter has a better program availability for me come fall.

I hate school.

I was FINALLY able to update my site today. For some reason, our browsers've been having trouble accessing sites, and one of them was my site builder. Ma reset the computer for an earlier date and it worked. If only I could do that with mine, but I downloaded far too many updates that I don't recall in order to re-download them. It'll cause more trouble than it's worth.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

FRAUD

Despite the fact my credit score is phenominal and I get credit card applications up the ass, I've been constantly denied a card every time I've applied. So, to get me going with that, ma had me put on with two of her cards. Today, checking the Mastercard bill, we found charges for some porn-related sites on a day when nobody would be home to make them. And I haven't charged anything except my bikes on that card recently. So, we're getting a new card, and ma's a little bummed about that, but what can ya do.

Also, my manager told me today I didn't make my goals thanks to my time on the road. It takes me too long to get where I'm going and to come back, apparently. I informed him of all the traffic and assorted problems that come and go, so he's gonna look into adjusting the times. If that's the only problem with how I do my job, I can live with that. Far as I'm concerned, it's a non-issue 'cause all those goal numbers they set for ya aren't possible in this city. It's unrealistic. They need to get some of those people they overpay to do research out here and get it right for US.