Saturday, December 27, 2008

Channel-surfing on a break between housecleaning chores, I came across a public access station showing a film of Omaha's recent history. They were interviewing various movers and shakers and wannabes about the Old Market, which started out as a neighborhood of warehouses and manufacturing buildings down by the Missouri River in Omaha's original downtown. My late husband, Bob, was one of the late 1960's "Old Market layabouts"; one particular family had invested in a lot of the area and made cheap warehouse space available to artists and entrepreneurs, and Bob had a photography studio down there, where he lived and worked, amidst many of his friends. Over the years I heard so many stories about their hijinks and escapades. Quite the wild bunch they were, and I know he always felt those were his golden years. I knew some of the people interviewed for this TV film, quite a lot about some of them.There was old footage of hippies hanging out on the curbs, blowing bubbles, and people remodeling some of the old buildings, and working in their little stores. Much of the art that hangs on my walls came from some of those artists, working so bright-eyed and young back then, on the cutting edge of Omaha's embryonic arts culture.

A weird mood has settled on me watching this. So many of those old friends of Bob's have gone now, there must be a great reunion party going on somewhere. The sanitized version Omaha is presenting in this film is not much like the stories I heard. And the weirdness lies in how detached I feel. For a few minutes this living room was filled with voices and faces that Bob knew well - I wouldn't be surprised if he knew everyone in those old home movies - and I wonder what he would have said about it. I'm not sad, exactly. It's the transience of everything filling the room here, I think. This is a sense that's seeping into me more and more since he died. Nothing new or original with me, of course. Just new *to* me.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

I'm very discouraged today. I have been purchasing materials and planning to make a line of handmade items to sell on I don't have a store there yet, because I need to have an inventory first, as well as logo, banner art, business card design, etc. But I've invested a couple hundred dollars so far in materials and equipment to make these things which will be aimed at people who I expect to be at least 21 years old and probably more like 50 or 60.

Anyway, yesterday a discussion erupted on the Etsy forums about a new law (the Consumer Products Safety Improvement Act) that's proposed in Congress that, if applied broadly, apparently will require all of us small business people making handmade items to keep extensive records and reporting capabilities to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, maybe even requiring us to pay for testing of our products. Trouble is that no one - including the CPSC themselves - seems to really know who and what is covered, and what the obligations will be.

Well - this was going to be a fun, part-time way for me to be creative and make some money to maybe do some improvements around my house that my normal budget won't allow. If it's going to turn into a monstrous money pit and bureaucratic nightmare, I don't need it. Of course, there's a lot of concern and agitation going on amongst the Etsy crafters but no one seems to have figured out what it really means. So I'm going to just sit on this idea for awhile - after all, I have enough other projects I could be doing with the time this would have consumed - until the dust settles and the CPSC comes out with their final regulations. It's kind of looking like the bill was written to answer those horrible problems of things like flammable materials used in children's pajamas that were made in foreign lands, lead in toy paint, etc., and the writers were unaware that there is a pretty vast population of self-supporting crafters out here whose businesses would be absolutely crushed if this thing is broadly applied. They'll be hearing from some Etsyans now, that's for sure, and maybe they'll refine the bill's language to avoid that.

But dang, I was looking forward to this little enterprise of mine...

Friday, October 10, 2008

Friday night, yay!

I didn't realize it had been so long since I posted anything here in Blogger. I've been on Live Journal a lot, though.

Haven't written any fiction in months & months, though I think about last year's NaNoWriMo book every day. I just never get around to writing on it. I'm fractured into seventy different directions - work, house, yard, cats, selling my dear husband's photography equipment at (which is a user's group concentrated on film photography - no digital there. Those folks are the absolute BEST. They are so helpful and kind, and I've found new homes for quite a bit of hubby's stuff). It's slow, and there is so much other stuff here I need to divest myself of. And I'm getting ready for another enterprise which, when it is launched, I will try to remember to announce here, and which may serve as a little bit of extra income and an outlet for some creative and scavenging instincts I've got. Oh, let's say "recycling" instead of "scavenging."

Anyway, I'm disorganized and frustrated with all this extra stuff around here and how slowly I'm getting rid of it - I got plans, oh boy do I have plans - but I vascillate between beating myself up for being so slow and disorganized, and telling myself, well, Terry, you dummy, you have to live life today, too, you can't just keep pounding yourself over the head with this idea that SOMEDAY when all the extra stuff has been gotten rid of, THEN you can live life. It's a habit of thinking that's plagued me all my adult life. This vascillation is no doubtr at least partly responsible for my disorganization. Talk about a vicious cycle.

OK, I've made a new post. It's not very interesting, I'm afraid - except OH YEAH I'M A GRANDMA!!! The baby arrived exactly on her due date, and I got to go out and spend a week with her and her folks when she was just 9 -15 days old, and I guess I'm not going to top that for excitingness so I'll close this now.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Well, smack my head and call me Grannie.

But wait until after August. That's when my VERY FIRST GRANDCHILD will be arriving!!!

I'm in shock, I think. Geez, this is going to take some getting used to!

This changes everything.

I think.
Trundling right along in my most-recent Grown-up Groove (having fixed the toilet all on my own last weekend), I loaded my lawn mower into my trunk this morning and took it to the mower doctor's place to get all fixed up for the oncoming mowing season. That sucker is heavy! And my rope and knots contraption to keep it from bouncing out of the trunk made the mower-fixer-guy laugh, of course, but who cares.

Then in a paroxysm of Grown-upness, I went & had my car cleaned, inside and out! Woo hoo! And then a roofer came and looked at my roof and told me that the best thing for me to do is to patch the one bad spot and let it go; I have asbestos shingles and it costs $2000 per 100 square feet to dispose of them! gasp! Well, as it should be, I say, that stuff is Not Nice for people to handle, and we shouldn't be just dumping it into landfills or whatever. He also said he'd save any salvageable shingles as he worked (if he gets my business) and wrap them up tight and safe so if I ever had another break, I could use the old ones. You can't buy them any more (of course, and perfectly fine with me) so used ones are going for $25 - 50 apiece on the open market. He won't give me an estimate on the needed repairs until he can get up there and look at the roof, which will be sometime this week. So, now two more roofing guys need to come over and tell me what they think. And when I've picked myself up off the floor, I'll have to decide what to do: go into debt now, or wait & save my money to pay for the work now. Depends on how much it is, of course.

And isn't this Adult World of Grown-Upness exciting? My golly, I'm just all -

Uh, just all -

Um. Well, I wore out that fit of Adultness quick, dint I? Phew.

But I've done a few housey things today, and now I've just subsided into my usual pile of inert So-whatness. It's OK; it's Saturday. Tomorrow is Errands and Chores day. Tonight I can channel surf and jack around doing nuthin' all I like. :^)

Sunday, March 09, 2008

I've been posting mainly in Live Journal lately, especially since Speculations Rumor Mill has closed down. A bunch of Rumor Millers have migrated to LJ to huddle together in our bereavement. Someone, bless them, started a LJ Rejection/Acceptance Community that sort-of replaces the RM's. So if you have R/A's you want to post, I suppose the easiest way is to email me and I'll tell you how to join LJ (if you're already registered, my handle there is threeoutside); if you Friend me, and I Friend you back, I think you'll be able to find my Friends list, and the RMers and R/A Community should be accessible through that. (And I must say, I do loathe that verbing of the noun Friend. Just so you know. I use it under protest.)

In other news, I completed the first draft of my first short story of 2008 yesterday. I wrote it for the writer's workshop at WillyCon coming right up the first weekend in April. Jack McDevitt, the Author GoH, will be running the workshop and I'm thrilled and terrified that he'll be reading and critting my story.

Looks like I sold a story to Thaneros! Now, if you look at that word, it's a combination of two Greek words, one meaning Death and the other, well, Eros. So if you've an easily offended sensibility you won't want to be going and looking for this story - or, likely, any other story on that new ezine. But I'm very proud of that story, I think it's one of the best I've ever written, so if you're of a broad-minded nature, by all means when it's published, do read it. And I've a thick skin - let me know what you think of it, if you want to. I'll try to remember to post here when it's online. It's going to be published in three parts, one a week, by the way.

So I'm hoping yesterday's story completion means I'm climbing back onto the writing horse again.

In music news, I downloaded NIN's new four-disc album Ghosts I - IV yesterday, but apparently my old stereo system won't play MP3s, so now I have to invest in some batteries because the ones I scrounged up yesterday didn't have the juice to power my CD player. Bah. It's so frustrating! I do so look forward to hearing Reznor's instrumental music! This set is all instrumentals played with, as usual, by a large cast of his musical friends. Including Adrian Belew (whoa!).

That's about it this time.