You come in by sex and go out by death. All else is speculation.


Here lies the latest facet of online journals since 2001 - this being kept since 2004 with several name changes. Within you will find: recaps of days/weeks written for my own purposes, adventures in the world, commentary on the most inane things, melodramatic metaphors, quotes, links to useful and/or bizarre websites, notes from my days as a student, occasional photo documentation of previously mentioned odysseys. Entries are locked on varying levels due to personal content. Approximately 10% is set to public viewing, mostly highlights from life and trivial things.
Church hat

Chicken catching equipment

[Current music: 'Hey Ladies' - Beastie Boys]

The neighborhood has acquired a stray chicken.

One Sunday afternoon I was sitting with Z on the park bench reading a book. He got up and started staring at the pine trees. "Do you see... a chicken?"

One of the more confusing questions I've ever been asked. Yes indeed, there was a white leghorn rooster pecking around. As we stood there this bird wandered right up. A guy was walking by and we called him over to look. He gawked at it for a little bit. Said he'd never seen a chicken in real life before, thanked us and went on his way.

I tried calling Animal Control but they run on Monday through Friday business hours. Tried Minneapolis animal control. They were unable to help because this is outside city limits.

Next day, I went out for my morning coffee on the balcony and heard someone on the rocks outside my window. It was him again, going through the fallen bird seen from the feeder. He had a brief and victorious fight with a gluttonous squirrel.(Excuse the pillar)

When I called the city they SENT THE POLICE to catch it because the single animal control lady for the area was elsewhere. When the woman on the phone said she'd send over officers I thanked her, hung up, then laughed until I cried. Just in time to compose myself and meet them outside. They walked around back and looked at the rooster long enough to determine that no, they could not catch him, especially without "chicken catching equipment." And so they left, promising to send over animal control. It was a waste of time as I knew it would be but damn did I hope to see two cops chasing a chicken.

Nobody ever came by despite different people calling. It came a weird effort on behalf of people in the neighborhood including those with the bird feeders. One lady brought out a cat kennel with bedding and water and checks daily. Three teenagers tried to catch it. Mostly people just stare. Eventually he was given a name, Kevin.

I haven't seen him since going out of town last weekend. Monday morning, leaving for work- there he is! Now he has a female companion! Where are these chickens coming from? Why hasn't animal control come around or returned calls? It's cool if he's wandering around getting by on being a free bird, good for him. The weather's been right for it. Soon enough it will be quite cold at night and that is worrisome. Good luck, Kevin.

Big Brother is watching

Mock Tiffany lamps, priorities, and a Ukrainian sandwich

Saturday off work, an acceptable day for coffee. Instead of walking home right after hitting the coffee joint I decided to patronize some of the shops I hadn't yet investigated.

First stop was the mysterious place with lots of globe lights and sun crystals hanging in the windows. It is a boutique.

When I walked in I was greeted with a large choice of faux Tiffany lamps. There were well over a dozen dispersed through the store. Typical dragonfly and peacock motifs. A floor stand with flower shades. Even a cupcake in the childrens' section. Lamps equaling the size of the little purple affair I found in a flea market for $10 going for $130. I can't say how pricey that is in a shop with $70 lace-hemmed yoga pants but a new lamp goes on the Someday list just the same. Right now I don't even have enough space for the ones I already have.

Aside from the clothing they sell decorated umbrellas (the poppy mandala was my favorite), artwork, local salad dressings, LED fountain candles. This painting of

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captivated me. Purple & grey is a favorite color combination. The hues compliment each other very well and the silver lily pads are dazzling.It has extra appeal since I saw purple lilies for the first and only time at the zoo conservatory this past Sunday. Gorgeous flowers indeed.

I was thrilled to find a local Young Living oils vendor especially because I just discovered that my current bottle of precious Thieves oil is down to about 5 drops. It's still going to be a minute before I can afford more- $45/bottle goes on the After Bills Are Paid list. However, I did allow myself a $4 headband made of orange and black upholstery cord, fancy buttons, and ribbon.

Wandering on. The other curious shop is the Ukrainian deli. I was lured in by the sandwich on the sign, expecting more of a full-on sammich shop only to discover it was a true delicatessen. Being in a leisurely mood, I took my time inspecting the contents of the shelves. The majority of labels were printed in Cyrillic so it was mostly a game of trying to guess the contents of certain jars.

Turns out the advertised 'Ukrainian  sandwich' was the only kind they served. Ham and salami with unknown cheese, mayo, spicy carrots. Suspicious ingredients yet quite delicious.

On the walk home I made my way past the house with a rock garden near the street. It has a purple maple, boulders, massive chunks of amber glass, and [usually] a Godzilla toy as the centerpiece. Lately it's been changing. The other day it was a flower pot, today it is a porcelain cat.


Someone give that man a raise!

I'm at a little café called Fat Nat's Eggs enjoying breakfast and a book. From the kitchen I can hear the cook drumming his spatulas, whooping and ringing the order-up bell in time to the music. So far there has been a banda tune, an old Nintendo theme, now Smokey Robinson.


define: space opera

I have been wanting to get with posting this year's Project365. Today seems like a good start. Here is the book series that has consumed me in my free time.

About 15 years ago Cartoon Network had a late-night anime block called Midnight Run. After curfew I would settle into a rocking chair and stay up watching shows. I always fought to make it to 3:30 in order to catch a mecha anime called Robotech. If you have seen it you surely remember the rough animation and the horrendous dubbing. Even so, it was an incredible storyline. A few months ago while perusing reddit, I discovered that the show was novelized in 1987. Immediately I ordered the books. Ever since, I will ramble about them to any fool who makes the mistake of asking me about them.

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It begins in 1999 during what is essentially WWIII. With skyline-shattering ocean-boiling thrusters an alien ship crash-lands in a southern Pacific island and effectively ends the conflict, an effort not so easily done as narrated in the show. Macross City grows around the ship (the Super Dimensional Fortress One; SDF-1) during a ten-year period of reverse engineering. On launch day it sends out a homing signal that draws the Zentraedi aliens that have been searching for the ship, a race of Spartan giants who are cloned and groomed for nothing but war by the triumvirate Robotech Masters.
The humans attempt to launch and it continously goes wrong from there. They turn on the anti-gravity drives full power only to have the drives rip through the flight deck and fly up into the sky as the ships crashes down. Somehow they get the SDF-1 airborne and hit the hyperspace fold drive at 2,000 feet. Instead of their projected dark side of the moon, their underestimation of power finds them near the orbit of Pluto along with much of Macross City. Nevermind the blood-freezing vacuum of space, they get the citizens in the sealed shelters aboard the ship. The community rebuilds inside the ship thanks to 3D printing, recycled gasses and the vague powers of Robotechnology. Nevermind the food supply.
The Terrans take two years getting back to Earth using Lagrange points while being harassed by the Zentraedi, who could easily destroy them but have orders to capture the ship without damage, as it houses one of the few sources of a mysterious force called Protoculture.

The humans are constantly running into disaster. Once back on Earth the captain cannot convince anyone to take in the citizens of Macross since all have been declared dead by the antagonistic United Earth Defense Council, who have manipulated the media into 3 different explanations, the official statement being a Krakatoa-magnitude volcanic eruption. Captain Gloval responds by flying the ship over population centers and broadcasting open-frequency with a plea to disembark the citizens until Ontario decides to accept them. Meanwhile in orbit, the Zentraedi make their move to attack. The SDF-1's 'pin-point barrier system' overloads and destroys the city of Toronto. Naturally the people are rejected and condemned to the ship as the Robotech Defense Force is ordered to wander the solar system as a lure.

The books fill in a lot of the limited details from the anime along with the timeline. It's strange to think that the story begins in 1999 and ends in 2015; shortly before I began watching until now. Plus I don't have to endure Minmei's awful singing that powers the theme of love and emotion toppling an empire of warriors. There was a lot of death in the show, yes, but here everything is gruesomely realistic. One scene describes launch catapult officer Moira Flynn during earthbound alien attack. Blazing Veritechs are falling from the sky and she must bulldoze the wreckage into the ocean to clear room for more launches.

Most characters are fleshed out, though the main male character seems more flat than in the cartoon. I didn't realize what a brooding, jealous asshole he is until I could read inside his head. The love triangle has become a love square complete with a dead fiance's doppelganger and incestuous third cousins. The action scenes and description of the mecha are well-written, so that I can easily visualize what's happening. 97% of the earth's surface is destroyed by Zentraedi bombardment in both adaptions, though the novels describe radiation hazards and the great struggle to bring vegetation or any life back from the brink of extinction. Physics of deep space attempt to explain that which is not lost to pure fiction.

There's also character development on the enemy side. The three defective Zentraedi spies are my favorite. They are the comic relief in their failed attempts to understand the non-militaristic side of society. At one point I was cackling aloud when they mistook a tall open-top clothing donation bin for a basic survival test.

The show was adapted into short books which were later compiled. I have seen only the Macross saga, which lasts 2 compilations (originally 6 books), about 1,000 pages altogether. It has me so hooked I ordered the remaining 3 omnibus books: Southern Cross and the Sentinels. What do you know, just as I was updating this my next door roommate knocked on the door with one of the books in the mail. It's like magic.


(no subject)

The first warm night of the year allows me to be outside while repotting the house plants. There must be dozens of snakes slithering around in the grass right now; the entire yard sounds like it's alive and moving.

Losing daylight

Beannacht – A New Year Blessing
~ John O’Donohue ~

On the day when
The weight deadens
On your shoulders
And you stumble,
May the clay dance
To balance you.

And when your eyes
Freeze behind
The grey window
And the ghost of loss
Gets into you,
May a flock of colours,
Indigo, red, green
And azure blue,
Come to awaken in you
A meadow of delight.

When the canvas frays
In the currach of thought
And a stain of ocean
Blackens beneath you,
May there come across the waters
A path of yellow moonlight
To bring you safely home.

May the nourishment of the earth be yours,
May the clarity of light be yours,
May the fluency of the ocean be yours,
May the protection of the ancestors be yours.

And so may a slow
Wind work these words
Of love around you,
An invisible cloak
To mind your life.