b3ta.com user Squilliam
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» Books

Childhood's friend
Must have been about 30 years ago, a few of us who'd just met that weekend began a conversation about favorite authors from their teens (we were in our early 20s) and SF came up as a genre.

A couple of the guys couldn't remember the most ripping author's name and everyone else gladly chimed in to help them out: Heinlein. Robert Heinlein.
(Sat 7th Jan 2012, 3:20, More)

» First World Problems


(Sun 4th Mar 2012, 21:28, More)

» Messing with people's heads

Uncle Mike (for that was his name)
About 10 years ago, I worked with a guy who didn't really get much respect from others, but had plenty for himself, so it all balanced out. He was the type who would jump into others' conversations to explain the punchlines of jokes just told, or use his truck to block the way into the parking lot from the street. Ha ha.

Every day, without exception, his lunch consisted of a baloney sandwich on white bread, with a container of skim milk, which he would place in the employees' fridge in the morning.

One fateful day, at lunchtime, he took out his sandwich to find a bite had been taken.
(Sun 15th Jan 2012, 20:31, More)

» Road Trip

Driving home after work on Friday about 7 p.m., maybe September (the sun was close to setting) when the car quit. Oh well, call up the AAA for a tow to the garage, which is on the way home, just to drop the car there 'til it's seen to.

Then, on home. Technically, home is a house right on the same route as the original breakdown so getting lost is an impossibility and distance is the only factor to consider. Why not walk 15 miles, starting at 9 p.m. as dusk settles in? They do it in books without a blink.

First, grab the jacket: it might get chilly and there are all those pockets to load up with water bottles from the car. Start walking. Nah, this main highway has too much high-speed traffic -- noise alone recommends against it. One block away runs the parallel original Ridge Road, dating back to pre-Columbian times as following the top of a hundreds-of-miles-long ridge through the forest, much less travelled.

Early decision: don't stop for a drink in each bar passed, might develop into a problem. So, rely on carried water bottles alone. Did stop to observe a night-time baseball game played under brilliant lights in a field next to one bar, but a guy in a golf cart motored up and asked me to move along since spectators seemed to annoy the neighbors. Good idea anyway, keep moving.

Ridge Road, being hundreds of years old in its present form, is not unpopulated; except for where the topography is unsuitable for housing, there are are few long stretches of fields, woods or hillsides. And yet...

Now the evening was well along. Fewer and fewer houses were even lit. Funny enough, neither was the road for looong stretches. Attempts to read the infrequent road signs at intersections by the light of a Bic lighter were less than successful. But, stay on the road and home will appear.

There was some activity still at this hour, though. Occasional shouts and running and sometimes fellow pedestrians. No prob, especially when met oncoming or seen going away. But there's something about being followed on a dark road at dead of night.

Walk, walk, walk. Quiet and dark. Interesting to see how the old-timers would have navigated by the stars. The big W of Cassiopea, etc., etc.

Three a.m. rolled around, and so did I to my house (TWO mph on level terrain in good weather FFS!!!!). That was a couple of years ago, though, and in the meantime I've been carrying a Spyderco Warrior in my jacket and a Springfield XD-45 in a locked box in the car, which I wouldn't be leaving unattended at the garage, but pop in the shoulder holster which also rides in the car.
(Sun 17th Jul 2011, 15:23, More)

» First World Problems

Being made a public spectacle
just due to collecting one's rightful First World benefits:

(Thu 8th Mar 2012, 2:21, More)
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