Saturday, December 29, 2012

Random Randomness

We survived yet another apocalypse prediction! Yay us!

A few random thoughts and then I'll let you go on your way:

1. Talk of what the "Fiscal Cliff" will do to our economy: Stock markets will tumble, we'll all pay higher taxes, the economy will stop its recovery.

Bullshit. Yeah, things might seem bad at first, but the thing I've learned about the stock market: It goes down. Then it goes up! Then it goes down again, and then goes up, inching higher and higher until something happens that 'corrects' it. This is one of those corrections. And guess what? When the stocks tumble someone with a lot of money will pick up those stocks that tumbled and then eventually turn a profit on them. Let's make them pay taxes on it! Then the government will have money to do the things it needs to do without borrowing.

2. Speaking of borrowing, I had an idea the other day. I know, I get too many ideas. And not enough money to make them happen. Well I've decided to concentrate my efforts. Not on Mike's News Hangout, though there will be news on that shortly. Project Five Star will have to wait. I'm going to concentrate my efforts on my writing. *GASP* Yes, the one thing I have proven talent in. Some may suggest that talent isn't very good, but I'm going to work on it.

You've seen my 'Shy Boy' snippets here. I want to turn that into a script. I want to sell that script. Now I could and will work on that while I'm homeless (makes for a better background story) but the shelter wants me to find a job, and I can't tell them my job is a writer, when I have no income. Eventually they'll get tired of that and force me to leave.

Instead, I'd like to find a benefactor, a patron, who can provide me with living expenses while I finish that and other scripts. I think you'll find I can survive off a very tiny sum of money compared to others.

I've tried the 'crowdsourcing' methods. I've tried asking for money directly. I know I don't qualify for a loan, so I'm asking one person, with more money than they can use, to help me out.

What do I have to offer in return? To pay back the loan with interest when I sell a script; to give you credit as a benefactor when I win an Oscar ;-); to donate signed copies of my scripts to you that may be worth something someday.

And my everlasting gratitude.

3. My videos have made a record setting (for me) amount of money this month, and it's not over. As of right now, I've made $10.66 for the month of December from AdSense, and the total made is $60.84. I know, to others it's not much, but to this poor homeless person it's a small fortune. I don't get any of it until it breaks $100, though, and then we start over. Please watch my videos and click on the ads!

That's all the randomness I can generate at the moment. Have a wonderful New Year!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

The Shy Boy - Vignettes 11 and 12

These vignettes are short, and not as detailed as the script might be, but it does reflect my feelings toward my first pet. A year has passed from the last vignette, more or less.

Vignette 11
Jake came home from 2nd grade one day to the sound of barking in the back yard. Jerry, who walked with him, though not on purpose, raced into the house and then out the back. Jake followed him a bit slower and looked out the back window. He saw his stepfather and mother bending over and petting a black puppy. He went through the door Jerry left open and stepped out.
His mother waved. “Jake! Look what we have now. A new member of our family. A sweet buppy!”
His mother always used that word around dogs and he just rolled his eyes. He came up to the puppy, who was tied to a tree in the middle of a yard. The dog was licking Jerry, then saw Jake and jumped up with its paws on his chest and licked his face. He giggled slightly, but moved out of her reach after a moment..
Oh look, she loves you already,” said his mom. “Her name is Cleopatra and she's a Labrador Retriever. She's purebred!”
The dog was bounding back and forth on her leash, letting out a bark every now and then.
Jerry came to his mother and hugged her. “Thanks Mom!”
Jake sighed quietly. “Yeah, thanks, Mom!”
Jake found his way back into the house and put his homework on the desk. Gradually the rest of the family came home from school and made a giant fuss over the 'buppy.' He heard that word so many times that day that when night came he covered his ears to block out the sound – of that and the dog barking.
Vignette 12
Over the next two months several things happened to Jake. Thanksgiving came and went. Christmas was on the way. Cleo had grown, both physically and on him. The dog showed great enthusiasm for both him and Jerry and greeted them when they got home from school.
The dog was kept in the back yard for the most part. She refused to be paper-trained and was not let in the house very often. Jake's step-father and Jack had started to build a doghouse for her, and she was often chained to the tree.
Sometime after his birthday, but before Christmas, Jake and Jerry walked to where the school bus would meet them, a few blocks from their house. They heard a barking behind them and turned to see Cleo running after them. She jumped at Jake's chest and slobbered all over him.
Cleo! You shouldn't be here! Go home!”
Jerry turned and continued to walk toward the bus stop. “Take her back home!”
But I'll miss the bus! Cleo, go home, please!”
The dog kept following them, though, wagging her tail
They reached the bus stop and Cleo stayed with them. Jake was worried that Cleo would try to get on the bus. He made her sit down as the bus approached and looked her in the eye. “Stay. Go home when we get on the bus, okay?”
The dog let out a woof. Jake held out his hand to her in a 'stay' position as the bus came up and kept it out until he was aboard the bus. The dog stayed where she was until the bus door closed, then got up and barked. Jake looked down at her and tried to tell her to stay. As the bus passed her, he heard a 'thump.'
Wait! Stop the bus!” he cried.
The driver ignored him and the bus went forward. Jerry and Jake both tried to look out the windows but Jake could not see anything through the other kids.
He spent the entire day in class worried about Cleo. Jerry said nothing to him.
When the bus let them off late in the afternoon, Jake could not see Cleo at the bus stop. He ran all the way home. He burst through the front door and saw his mother. She was on the phone. Her eyes were red.
Cleo?” Jake mouthed.
His mother put her hand over the mouthpiece of the phone. She hesitated for a moment, then shook her head.
Jake went to the backyard and the half-built doghouse stood empty. Tears began to well up and he ran to his room.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Potpourri for the End of the Worl... er, Year

A few last thoughts for the end of this, whatever it might be.

Kinda on a deadline here, so let's get underway!

- Another school shooting. I wanted to wait until we found out more before posting on it. Seeing way too much blame on a 'Godless society,' or 'Godless Schools.' The man was mentally ill, was apparently going to be committed by his mother and he got to her guns first. Would changes to the gun laws have helped that? No. Would a more secure school have stopped him? Apparently he shot his way in. So no. The simple fact is, there was nothing that could have prevented him from doing what he did except his mother never having owned guns in the first place. A ban on assault rifles is a nice place to start, though. How much fire power do you need to kill a deer? Just my two cents on that topic.

- I've suffered from two different types of flu in the last 3 weeks. I'm still recovering from the second one. A flu shot might have helped with one, but probably not both. I suffer in relative silence.

- I finished my Medical Front Office class, and got my certificate. I'm happy about that, and have put it on my resume. Now it's a matter of finding the right job, right? amiright? Hello? Any jobs out there?

- I've had a number of fever-related dreams lately, one entailed a story where 3 cultures clash, one believes in Spirit Guides, one in nature as a god, and the last believed in (dammit I can't remember right now!). They had a Native American feel to them, but the images that came to me of the men involved looked more European. Perhaps this is another planet we're talking about. Anyway, the point is one of the men has a 2-year-old daughter that is destined to draw all 3 cultures together to live in peace. I'm not sure how this happens yet, but I'll put it on my pile of ideas, which seems to grow larger every day.

- Had another idea, not during a dream, but while playing a game, of creating my own MMO game - 'World of Stickcraft' ;-) That has no graphics, just a 3D engine with stick figures. Might be something simple enough for one person to program. Not sure if I want to make this an epic adventure involving fantasy races, alien races, humans at war, or my favorite so far, all of the above and more. Something that combines all the other types of role-playing, fantasy, real life, space opera and mashes it all into one game. I'll think about that while I'm applying for jobs.

That's all that's currently running through my head. I hope you have a happy end of the world or Christmas/New Year, which ever comes to pass!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Shy Boy - Vignettes 9 and 10

Two quick vignettes that still stick with me. My mother never paddled me, but to be paddled by a teacher within earshot of the students was one of the most humiliating experiences of my life. The difference from one teacher to the next was like night and day, literally, for me.

Vignette 9
Jake looked at the girl with red hair who sat in the desk next to him and sighed. For a moment, he imagined kissing her like he had seen his stepfather kiss his mother.
Jake Hull! Pay attention!”
Jake started and looked at the blackboard. His teacher, Mrs. Zwerblia, stood with a ruler in one hand and a sour look on her face. She came up to him and slapped her ruler against his desk.
You will pay attention in my class!” She turned back to the math problem on the blackboard. “Tell me the answer to this problem!”
Jake looked at the board. The numbers appeared blurry and he squinted. “Five?”
That's right. Very good. Lorrie, please answer the second problem.”
Lorrie's eyes twinkled as she talked and Jake found himself enamored again. He felt a hand jerk his arm and let out a yelp. Mrs. Zwerblia dragged him by the arm to the coat room, stooping in mid-stride to pick up a paddle.
She stopped, pulled down Jake's pants, bent hover despite his protestations and then walloped him repeatedly on the rear. “You will pay attention to me!”
Jake cried with every pounding and after it was done his bottom was sore. He pulled up his pants and walked into the classroom with his head down. He could hear the other kids whispering, but no one dared talk out loud. He sat at his desk and could not bring himself to look at Lorrie.
He held his tears back until he was home.

Vignette 10
Jake was in his room, doing his homework when his mother came in.
Jake, I want you to know that I don't like what that teacher did to you. I've arranged with the school to move you to a different classroom, a new teacher.”
Jake looked up at her and smiled. “Thanks, Mom!”
He entered his new classroom the next day feeling so much better. The woman behind the desk looked familiar.
Hi Jake,” said Mrs. White. “Nice to have a neighbor for a student!”
That's right,” said Jake. “You live across the street, where that big statue of Paul Bunyan sits!”
Mrs. White laughed. “Yeah, I keep bugging my husband to get that out of the back yard. So I hear you're a pretty imaginative guy, right?”
Jake shrugged. “I guess.”
Well, we're working on short stories, and I can't wait to hear yours!”
Jake smiled. “I'll start working on it!”
Jake sat in his new desk and let out a satisfied sigh.

Monday, December 10, 2012

The Shy Boy - Vignette 8

The wedding scene here is hardly detailed, but to a six or seven-year-old introvert, the sights and sounds can be overwhelming.

Vignette 8
Jake knew his time was short, so he flipped over the chair in the living room and climbed underneath it. He positioned his hands as if he were holding a joystick and moved them right and left. He made a roaring sound as he feigned adding power to his makeshift jet. For a moment, he imagined himself in the air. He looked to one side and saw another jet as his wingman. He waved to the pilot, his father, and he smiled and waved back.
The voice startled him and brought him back to his view of the upholstered seat of the chair. “Yeah, Mom?”
Why aren't you getting ready? We need to go soon!” She pulled him out from under the chair and straightened it.
Aw Mom, can't I have a little fun?”
She dragged him to his room where the suit she had spent a month getting to fit right lay on the bed. She pointed to it and started to pull off his shirt.
I hate ties.”
It's a clip on. It won't kill you.”
It's the top button that chokes me!”
He gagged lightly as his mother buttoned his shirt to the top and put the tie on. She pulled down his pants.
Mom! I can do this myself!”
She let go. “I don't have time for this! I need to get dressed too!” She left him with his pants off. He stared at the pants she wanted him to wear. She had forbade him from wearing them at any time except during fittings and they were flat, crisp and clean. He put them on and the material scratched his thighs. He sighed and then put on the belt. All that was left was the shoes and socks. He picked up the pair of black socks and sat on his bed.
Jerry came in, already dressed. “Hurry up loser. Mom says you'd better be ready to go in five minutes or she's leaving you behind!”
Wouldn't be the first time.”
Jerry grabbed him by the tie and forced him to stand up. “Listen dipwad, this is her special day. Don't you ruin it by acting stupid!”
He let go and Jake did his best to straighten out his shirt and tie. “I'll be good if you will!” He wanted to kick Jerry, but his feet were still bare and he knew he'd only hurt himself. He stared at the hard shoes he was going to wear and realized that if he kicked Jerry with those he'd probably scuff them, and he had spent half an hour shining them. He sighed, put on his socks and his shoes. They were loafers, and he was glad. He wasn't very good at tying shoes yet.
He went out to the den, where the rest of the family stood. Priscilla approached him and straightened his tie again and then looked him over.
How did you wrinkle your shirt already?”
You wouldn't believe me.” He glared at Jerry, who snickered.
She gave an exasperated sigh and pulled his jacket tighter over the wrinkled part. “Maybe the jacket will hide it.” She fussed over him until their mother came out. She wore a simple green dress. Priscilla had been disappointed that she wasn't wearing a traditional wedding dress, but Mom had told her that was for first time brides only.
Mom scanned the troops quickly, fidgeted with Jake's tie, shirt and jacket and then sighed. She licked her hand and tried to pat down the part of his hair that always wanted to stick up. Jake shuddered. “Let's go!”
Jake had never been to a wedding before. The sights, sounds and people made him want to crawl away. But this was an important day for his mother and he resisted all urges, and just tried to smile as people he didn't know grabbed his hand and shook it, or hugged him, or tried to talk to him. The ceremony itself was simple. “To have and to hold...” He didn't understand the meaning, but he understood the sentiment.
Afterward, he smiled as pictures were taken, then found his social energy was waning and longed for home and the relative peace of his room.