Bleah.

Oct. 14th, 2009 10:05 am
janradder: (sigh)
The man sitting in front of me at the coffee shop carries with him the overpowering aroma of body odor and baby powder. It is both unfortunate and distracting.
janradder: (Default)
1. Everyone in Upstate New York is inbred. Everyone. Especially people from Rochester. Also, people from the Dakotas, but most especially North Dakota. And West Virginia. And all of Scandinavia. with all those fiords.

2. The Roman Empire split into two empires -- the Holy Roman Empire and the Western Roman Empire. Then all that was left of the Roman Empire was the Holy Roman Empire until the Roman Empire dwindled to encompass just a small part of Germany. After that, because the Popes were trying to control everyone through the Holy Roman Empire, Martin Luther started the Reformation. This led to the final downfall of the Roman Empire.

3. That (the Reformation) happened around 1759 when it started the French Revolution. But it didn't really succeed in changing anything.

4. Lucy (the Australopithecus afarensis fossil found in Africa) is not the name given to an actual fossil, but is instead something symbolic. Also, Lucy is 300 million years old. But there's another fossil even older than the symbolic Lucy, and that fossil is the fossil of a neanderthal.

Of course I can't be sure, but I think these guys may have been from Upstate New York. Or maybe they're just Scandinavian.

Writing

Jun. 12th, 2009 02:40 pm
janradder: (Default)
Today, with both boys spending the day at Éiden's preschool, I was able to get to the coffee shop again and put in a full day of work. It's been strange this week, since I only had two days of writing due to the end of Arie's school year and my migraine on Monday. Starting next week, I'm back to just three days a week (one of them being a full day), which is better than nothing at all, but I've been spoiled these past few months having Éiden in school five days a week.

As to the pace of the writing, it's going well. I've got half the book up to the fifth draft, and I'm currently working on the fourth draft for the second half. I have no idea when i'll be finished, though I think it may be some time early in July (at least, I hope that's when it's finished). I'm thinking, though, that when I've completed the fifth draft, I'll be basically done (unless it's absolutely horrid, and then I really don't know what I'll do), which is kind of exciting.
janradder: (Default)
I know I've often complained about the coffee shop I go to, but I really do like it, and there is definitely a lot to be said for a coffee shop where, even before you get to the counter, there's already a cup of coffee waiting for you because the guy behind the counter saw you walk in and he knows that's what you always get.

Dear God.

May. 29th, 2009 02:36 pm
janradder: (Default)
There is a woman one table away from me who has been talking non-stop so loudly about her crazy, dysfunctional family that I could hear her in the bathroom when the door was shut. I really know way too much about this woman's life.
janradder: (scared)
Today at the coffee shop, there was a man sitting next to me who: 1) refused to chew his food with his mouth closed; 2) ate his breakfast at a very leisurely pace; and 3) sucked his teeth and smacked his lips between bites, so that he sounded exactly like my dog licking his lips.

It was all I could to to keep from turning to him and yelling, "My god, man -- do you have no decency? Will you just fucking stop smacking you lips?!" I even went so far as to bite my finger so hard I thought I might have bruised it because he was so maddening. Thankfully, another table opened up and I quickly took it, because the guy sat at his table for another couple hours and had I stayed, I might not be writing this at he moment because I would be locked up in jail for assault and battery.
janradder: (charlie brown)
1. People who take up more than one table just so they can put their dirty cups or bags on it, especially when the place is crowded.

2. People who have loud conversations on cell phones.

3. People who think it's impossible to hold a conversation with the person sitting directly across from them without sharing it with the entire coffee shop.

4. The kid rhythmically tapping the metal table with his pen as he listens to his iPod.

5. The baristas who have had the same damn Lucinda Williams CD on repeat for the past two weeks.


Seriously, I need to start bringing some headphones.
janradder: (Default)
1. The roads around here are seriously fucking dangerous. I've now started to go into spins on three separate turns and a straightaway when traveling at speeds well below what you'd consider safe. And, in about twelve hours, I've now seen three pretty bad accidents because of the ice.

2. Do the white baristas at Anodyne realize how offensive it is to play an hour of gangsta rap where practically every other word is either nigger, ho or bitch and half of the songs are about shooting someone in the head while the other half are about prowling for pussy? Did I mention that Anodyne is often frequented by preschool-age kids?

3. I'm really looking forward to tomorrow when the high is supposed to reach into the (positive) 20's. Someone in the paper the other day mentioned that you never realize how warm freezing can be until you go through one of these cold snaps.

4. Working on the third draft of my book is slow and, at times, is really kicking my ass, but I think it's going well and I'm getting some good work done.

5. When I was driving Éiden home from school today, I saw a cop car pulled over next to another car on the side of the road in my neighborhood. At first I thought it was either an arrest or a routine traffic stop. Then I realized that the cop car's hood was open and he was helping a couple of guys jump start their car which made me smile. I don't think I've ever seen a cop stop to give a jump.
janradder: (Default)
When having an attorney/client meeting dealing with sensitive subject matter such as felony convictions, resisting arrest, and past drug dealing, might I suggest that a public coffee shop is usually not considered the best place to hold a loud face-to-face meeting. And while I sympathize with the case and hope everything turns out for the best, I really could have done without ever knowing a thing about either of your personal lives. Especially when I was trying to write and, until the two of you sat down, everything had been going well. Unfortunately, as soon as the two of you began your meeting at the table six inches from mine, I was unable to concentrate on my work any more and, consequently, spent a full half-hour plus reading and re-reading the same six or seven sentences. Guys? Next time -- get a room.

Yuck.

Jan. 5th, 2009 07:42 pm
janradder: (Default)
Just before Christmas, Betsy's Back Porch Coffee, the coffee shop where I write closed. I noticed it on my way to drop Éiden off at school. On Wednesday, the lights were on and customers sat at the tables. On Friday, it was dark and empty. A letter was taped to the inside of the front door telling whoever cared to read it that the shop was closed after seven years of operation because sales had dropped by fifty percent over the past year.

I hadn't been writing there in a couple of weeks because the demands of Christmas preparations had taken over my schedule. Today, I got back to writing but in a new coffee shop -- Anodyne. It's okay but very busy, and the tables are crammed tightly together so that it is difficult to get in and out from your chair. It's also not as close as the other one. Still, it's better than the Starbucks I could have gone to or the Caribou Coffee I went to and quickly left because the only table with an outlet anywhere near was directly under the speaker which pumped out horribly drab music at a rather loud volume.

In time, I suppose I'll get used to the new place. They play decent music but not too loudly, and most of the people there seem to either be working or, if they're talking, keep their voices at a polite level. I do miss my old coffee shop, though. The barista knew what I drank and would happily pull down a mug for me when she saw me enter the store. And I'd gotten used to seeing all the regulars come in and out at their usual times. it felt comfortable and familiar. Oh well.
janradder: (Default)
This morning as I was sitting in a coffee shop, I ironically happened to be working on my memoir about punk rock when I overheard a conversation.  Behind me, a woman  began talking about the "Punk Rock" wedding she'd been to.  Because the bride and groom were "punk" they would have a similarly themed wedding.  Aside from the typical piercings and tattoos that they both had, all the bridesmaids wore Chucks.  "Oh, that's cute," said the woman she was talking to.  It was at this point that I stopped listening.

I just hate that punk has become this horrible co-opted identity.  I mean, geez, a punk rock wedding?  That is the lamest shit I've ever heard.  And all the bridesmaids wearing Chucks?  Well, I guess they must really be punk, then.

I have no piercings, no tattoos, have never had a "kooky" hair style or worn a motorcycle jacket yet I know with utter certainty that I am more punk than those people will ever be.  Punk is not just some costume that you put on and wear around to make you feel different.  It's not a bunch of cds that you listen to to give yourself street cred.  I'm not going to be stupid and say that it's a way of life but it is a way of thinking and creating and doing.  And it doesn't have to be some pissed off or angry hardcore attitude full of black clothes and piercings and tattoos.  It's a way of just being yourself, not adopting someone else's look or likes or tastes or lifestyle.

I can't stand that punk is now something that your kid dresses up as for Halloween or a shirt you can buy mass marketed at Target or Wal-mart.  It makes me sad to think of what's become of punk rock.  You've got a million crappy "punk" bands running around playing lousy pop songs and a million more people calling themselves punk because they listen to that crap and dress just like the bands.  It's just pathetic.  There was a time when punk actually meant something.  Now it doesn't mean shit.

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March 2012

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