Friday, May 17, 2013

7 Quick Takes Friday Vol. 7

Again, hosted by Conversion Diary

1.     Woah, what a week! Those of you who follow politics know what I’m talking about, but even if you don’t, odds are you’ve heard something about all that’s been going on. At least three major scandals blew up all at once, and like the Fiendfyre in the last Harry Potter book, they appear to just be getting bigger and bigger rather than burning out.

And the worst part? We still haven’t heard anything about what I think is the worst of the Obama Administration’s scandals: Fast and Furious (I believe that’s because they’re still trying to work around the President’s not-at-all-suspect Executive Privilege declaration). Hey, House Oversight Committee? Maybe we can use all this to draw people’s attention to the whole “the DOJ shipped guns to the Mexican Cartels, leading to the deaths of hundreds of innocent people” thing.

2.     Speaking of politics, I have a free tip for any future Presidents:
Don’t. Do. This.

Now, before anyone says it, I’m sure that some previous Presidents have done it too, but I frankly don’t care. A United States Marine is not the President’s personal valet and manservant. If I’m not mistaken, he actually has at least one valet and manservant! Get him to hold up your damn umbrella. Or how about another one of the bloated White House staff? In a pinch you could even call up one of the more useless Cabinet members (Secretary of Education, Secretary of Energy, etc.) and put them to work. Or, how about this? If you think it might rain, put up a friggin’ tarp, you lazy incompetent!

This strikes me as a painfully disrespectful thing for the President to do. These guys are Marines. Not only that, but they’re color guard Marines serving the President: they’re the elite of the elite, and he’s using them as a personal umbrella stand!  

Just check out that poor Marine’s face: even he can’t believe the President is making him do this. I like to imagine he’s weighing the relative merits of going ‘The Penguin’ on Obama’s arrogant posterior.

3.     I’m still going strong on Chronicles of Hendricks; we’re up to about 26,000 words (though some of those I’m already planning to cut/replace). You know, writing works in funny ways. This week I happened to come up with the idea for a joke about the “only one way to find out” trope (you know, someone will say something like “is it safe?” and the other person will say “only one way to find out” and risk their lives to ‘test’ the thing). Then I decided, ‘wait, if they’re going to climb up the laundry chute, they should run into something on the way…’ then, when trying to decide how they escape from the ‘things’ (I won’t say what they are), I wound up having them pulling off a sheet that was covering something…and now I want to make that something a plot point somehow. I just don’t know what it is. Stay tuned!

4.     So, I went shooting again this week; again, trying to make it an at-least weekly thing, since A). I need to practice and B). there’s a range fairly nearby that is cheap, quiet, friendly, and seems largely unaffected by the ammo shortage. Anyway, this particular range gives you a pair of clips to hang up your targets, with the rule that you have to pay for any that you accidentally shoot. So, I plugged out my usual fifty rounds into two targets, was doing fine, hadn’t hit the clip once…then on my very last shot I destroyed the clip. Literally; the bullet smashed it to pieces, taking a good chunk of target with it.

Frankly, that was worth the two dollars they charged me for it. 

5.     My apartment has been invaded by ants. Seriously, they’re everywhere. It’s gotten to the point that I don’t bother to kill them unless they’re directly in my way. I’ve got the exterminator coming, but since that’s done through the apartment office I don’t know when exactly he’s supposed to get here. In the meantime, I just squish them when they bother me and try to clean up my food so they don’t have a motive to come in. Of course, now it’s too late: they think this is their home now.

6.     By the way, regarding the violin recital I mentioned last week? Well, it was one of those things were everyone tries to assure me I did fine, but I know it was the worst version I’d played recently. Oh, well; I’ll do better next time.

7.     Today at work we had a cook out (I forget what for: some of the wiper guys put it on). Lots of delicious-smelling hamburgers and brots and chicken…and I couldn’t have any of it because it was Friday! For a while I considered just diving in and doing some other penance later, but then I thought “It’s a penance; it’s supposed to hurt” so I passed over the sumptuous meats and contented myself with asparagus, carrots, and watermelon.

I actually found it wasn’t too bad; after a few minutes I stopped noticing the heavenly aroma of grilled flesh, the asparagus provided a nicely smoky/seasoned flavor, and I walked away fairly contented. So, it all worked out and I don’t regret the loss of juicy meat-flesh (*twitch*).

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