Random Thoughts – One

Random Thoughts

One

I look in the mirror and I can see the traits my father had. The errant eyebrow twisting out from the other hairs, the narrow face. Growing up, people always said I looked like my father and that my brother looked more like my mother.

Looking in the mirror now as I comb my hair, I see the eyes. Lately, my eyes have been tearing for no apparent reason, and tearing a lot. Just the way my mother’s eyes teared. She was always dabbing away tears.

I don’t know… My eyes just keep waterin’.

She said that often. Now, it is my eyes that are watering and there’s nothing I can do about it. I look worried, despite feeling fine. I look like I have a permanent scowl. I got my kidney disease from my mother. Is that what causes the constant look of sadness?

I look in the mirror now, and I see my mother. My father has receded. And she and I are in the foreground. Just like it used to be.

Photo of snow with footsteps

NaNoWriMo

National Novel Writing Month

This past November, I participated in National Novel Writing Month (NANOWRIMO1) for the first time.

Trying to create a novel of 50,000 words in thirty days is quite a task. Unfortunately, I did not succeed in that goal, however I learned a great deal in my effort.

  • I learned, concretely, that procrastination is my foremost difficulty in writing (and probably other areas of my life as well. 😱 )
  • No character or story is written in stone when in the creating process. I was totally surprised at how it forced me to think about the story in a different way when faced with a word-count deadline.
  • Save the editing for later… It can slow you down. A lot.
  • Writing 600 words is easy,… 1,667 words2 is somewhat more difficult.
  • I’m not the only one!

These are the principal ideas I came away with. For the record, I finished on November 30th with 37,228 words. That’s right. Only 12,712 words shy of the goal. Why? Because I procrastinated too many days and toward the end,  I literally got sick. In the bed sick. My illness is not the issue now. It’s January and NANOWRIMO continues to push me with editing what I have written and getting my work read.

Now What?

So I continue working on my story and learn more about where to proceed from here. Meanwhile, that story that was bottled up for so long, seems to have allowed other ideas and stories to bubble to the surface, and now my biggest issue is determining which story gets priority.

I may or may not ever publish anything, but I am really enjoying this entire process.


  1. “National Novel Writing Month, shortened as NaNoWriMo (na-noh-ry-moh), is an annual internet-based creative writing project that takes place every November.  NaNoWriMo challenges participants to write 50,000 words of a new novel between November 1 and 30. Despite its name, it accepts entries from around the world. The goal of NaNoWriMo is to get people writing, no matter how bad the writing is, through the end of a first draft.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Novel_Writing_Month 
  2. This is the average word-count you need to reach per day,  in order to make the 50,000 word deadline by November 30th. 

Elysium

Matt Damon with gun

I thought I was tired of the blockbuster summer movie busts, but here I am, anticipating yet another one. Basically it’s because this new one has two of my favorite actors in it.

Jodie Foster and Matt Damon are being billed as the stars of the movie Elysium1. Both are known for choosing movies with interesting subject matter, so this looks promising.

Neill Blomkamp, the director of District 92 is also directing this film. Apparently Elysium will explore more of the same types of themes. This time dealing with issues such as immigration, health care and class issues. Seems pretty timely.

Check out the previews. (When I viewed these, there must have been a large number of people at the server because there was a lot of  stutter.  Hopefully  Sony Pictures will correct this soon.)

Jodie Foster


  1. Scheduled for release 9 Aug 2013. ↩
  2. From Wikipedia: The story, adapted from Alive in Joburg, a 2005 short film directed by Blomkamp and produced by Sharlto Copley and Simon Hansen, pivots on the motifs of humanity, xenophobia and social segregation. The title and premise of District 9 were inspired by events that took place in District Six, Cape Town during the apartheid era. ↩

App iOS Store Sales

According to Sharif Sakr at Engadget today:

Here’s a little treat on a Monday morning. A number of premium iOS apps and games have been discounted to nothing over at the App Store, including the charming and mildly addictive Tiny Wings (and Tiny Wings HD for iPad), Traktor DJ (normally $20), Superbrothers: Sword and Sorcery EP, as well as Infinity Blade II (usually $7).

via News360

Taxes for fun and profit

chart by Gabe courtesy of MoveOn.org

Well, it’s tax day again and I just thought I’d remind those of us who are retired and working, that  while we are  counting our pennies and deductions before the dreaded deadline, there are entities of our society that would like to be treated as though human but not suffering any of the duties of taxes.

A few weeks ago, Senator Bernie Sanders released a list of the ten worst companies for paying their taxes.  You sorta knew that Exxon Mobil would be there as number one, but check out some of the other names.


… and waiting for the sun.