I try to instill independence in my kid as much as I can, but there's so many idiotforces at work against such a thing. 

BC social services won't allow a 11 yr old to watch over her sibs on public transit. Vancouver transit is like, the safest ever. So many "kids that age can't dooooo that". 

Sure they can. I was a latchkey kid at that age watching over my sister. Of course if you'd like to supply options and pay for them be my guest. 

The fretful parent scrum at drop off and pick up tho. Good gods. 

And in 30 min I depart for that..:D 
 I feel like I really outta take a vow of near silence. Withdraw into myself. 

This city works for R, because it is so antisocial. and I'm just shrivelling inside. He is annoyed at the decision I made, without him. Because it wasn't his to make. When you applied for work in halifax and made me dismantle MY life, you don't get a say when i go "this job is not for me".

Another dental follow up tomorrow. I'm getting goddam tired of them as they're ALWAYS running way late, and it's always rushed. And I can't afford the next batch of work till I find stable income. So lets drop the issue. I KNOW I have more work to get done. It won't get done till january.

Mostly I'm just sliding back into the depression. 

It's the lonliness. I just can't deal with it.
 This is the tale of how I had and now don't have a job.

What!? you say? 

Well, they finally offered it to me so I come in on a day shift thinking it'll be one of a few, because I was told in the interview "monday and friday evenings, and some weekends, ( therefore keeping the schedule issues with S, and R, whose job does take fucking priority, and while I was flexible, I really can't expect my partner to cover midday shifts because she books me for 2-7. the store is open 9-9. why not 5-9 ( a 4hr shift?)

R works 9-5ish. so he can in theory, zip home and it's not a huge bite of his day like covering me at 2--7. After school daycare would run $600/m so i'd be taking home after transit costs, around $50 a month. I make that in gem sales. 



We can get S dropped off to school, it's the 3pm pickup that's the issue. While I did say yes, flexible, I wasn't expecting this. 9-2? sure. 10-3? no can do. 

But here's the fucking thing, she went on and on and on about how we'd discuss this but she'd gone ahead and booked out all these hours, when I was told that it was only 10-15, evenings, weekends.

Before that, during the interview I met first with the gritchy stock clerk, who just seemed cold and standoffish and I was told repeatedly NOT TO TALK TO HER. By the boss. The boss asserted often "I LIKE THINGS MY WAY., I AM TOO BOSSY, everyone says so". Every hour I was reminded to TALK TO NO ONE.

Customers? Well, there was ONE that actually...oh, she only exchanged an item. a 60 buck item. And we sold another 60 buck piece but total sales for the day didn't clear 200. I used to manage a franchisee in the bay that racked 5000 a day, and I did that mostly without extra staff, or just one other, she has three of us on? for a space half the size, a quarter of the size.

She manages the schedule, the cash, the open, close, and SHE HANDLES ALL THE SALES, in a "here let me do it" way. 

She repeatedly asserts how AMAZING she is at selling. Sure, if there's actually PEOPLE in the spot. Oh. there's NOT. Not a goddamn soul. It's deader than fucking deadballs. She goes on more how she expects sales targets to be hit, no excuses. Um. No customers. 

See, I'm used to a much faster pace of sales. Like 30-100 an hour. This is...deadsville. They're busy boxing up stock to ship to warehouse clearance and no goddamn wonder, the website shows hip wrap dresses and frocks, the store carries "EURPEEEAN" middle ager. Except the ones I know wouldn't touch this stuff. "Its for cruises, but don't talk to the customer." ok, so how the wobbledyfuck am I to determine their needs if I cannot let them talk to me, or i cannot talk to them. 

We're to develop "client books" but how this might happen when "customers won't want to deal with anyone but me" she says. HOOOKAY. 

More comments on "drama. I don't like drama. I don't like drama." We GET IT. I unbox clothes and I steam clothes and I watch the clock and start praying for death. 

While ringing in a called in order, I'm working their till system which is one for inventory, one for the dept store. Did this at Fannys. Nothing new. She barks at me. I used to train people on these and it does take a bit of time to get back on the horse ( I sort of had a grasp by end of day but with no customers not sure how one learns/relearns till) "hit "TENDER" I look for tender ( most POS systems use "PAYMENT" now, this stupid POS POS is full of cutesy images that clutter the field of vision. Its one of the pokiest, garbagey looking I've dealt with but fine. She goes "TENDER MEANS PAYMENT." I reply "I KNOW THAT." 

off to the bay till and the damn machine's being a catankerous putz manually entering the damn card number and she won't hold the motherfucking paper still so I can read it. The bay tills have not changed in 30 years, much, and I just start getting back into the groove and she won't stop BARKING in my ear.

I last used a till like that in 2003. I used to TRAIN people on cash. Barking in their ear? NOT A HELP. 

Back to steaming over priced clothes. By this I mean, not the Isaac Miyake over the way, or the vera wang, no, this is "SIMPLII" because plus women need to be infantilized. "SAMOOM, BY Doug wobble" or some thing so we get the feeling we're wearing a label but it's like buying a gucci knockoff called "bucci" and expecting we'll think it's the same. 

I familiarize myself with the clothes. At her behest I try on a coat with a rolled drape collar. The cut conceals my bum, belly, boobs. I look like a giant blob. I guess? She raves at me in the coat as if trying to sell it. The color and the collar are nice but the fit is atrociously unflattering to my size 16 self. I'm wearing a tent. 

We unpack more tentlike clothing. 

It's godawful expensive considering women of size are often not lofted into jobs that would fund the purchase of a raw hemmed floor length boiled wool vest for $545. Just saying. But yanno. You do you. 

More no customers. More looking for work to keep busy. 15 min break in the lunchroom and the TV's turned to Dr. Oz. Atmosphere of a jail cell. It's retail but ok. 

Back to more clothes steaming. Other colleage leaves and I'm scolded for addressing the other person in the course of duties "do you need more hangers". 

I'm imparted with more selling advice. Granted, I folded my own company but that was after the junk-jewelery market ate the damn Etsy market. I knew I had to switch my game. i can sell fine. 

I'm told more. "I don't want drama." I get the schedule and my heart sinks, it's a massive disruption to R and his job, and i'm bored to fucking tears in this dead end boutique. "You'll be working with Catherine. DON"T TALK TO HER." "AND kim. DON"T TALK TO HER." 

This is fucking idiotic. 

I go home,  talk to R. He thinks I should ride it out. I see weeks of schedule disruptions and working in a sweltering store where the act of opening a water bottle earned a gasp like I'd taken out a human severed head and started gnawing. "SOMEONE WILL REPORT YOU."

WHO? THERE IS NO ONE HERE. It IS HOT AS BALLS IN THIS STORE. 

I realize I just don't have it in me to work under such a dreary antisocial micromanager. I wanted a job for some interaction and this is driving a depression spiral with her "DON"T TALK TO ANYONE". 

i send a terse, polite email saying I decline the job and I'm just done. I really don't even care about the 4 hours pay. whatever. I just don't fucking care. 

Toronto: you have a social skills issue. 

Talk to my mom. "Oh, no." she says."I saw you when your table was besieged at pride, you're more talented than they know. That wasn't a good job." 

I've got a fucking college degree and 15 years experience in retail, ten of that in luxury goods, and I'm NOT standing around steaming clothes as some blow hardy half wit tells me how awesome she IS, and not to talk to anyone. 








Slept on the massive edit request. Still pissed off. I posted the feedback and my notes on it, in the document KC beta read, so she'd understand.


I just read your story. I like it. Very mysterious…. definitely a different take on The Sha’Daa than we’ve had in the series before...

There are a couple of issues that need to be addressed, and hopefully won’t require too much in the way of rewriting or tweaking on your part.

First off, as a quick Sha’Daa background reminder/wrap-up, Johnny the Salesman is a powerful supernatural being with godlike powers, and as such has unusually perceptive senses and prescient abilities, which is why he is able to make the tens of thousands of trades that he does all over the planet… he can perceive what the ramifications for every Sha’Daa-related event and hell-portal opening are, and so he has an endless number of objects in his bottomless inner jacket pocket that can help the person he trades with (some are magical, some are merely practical, but all help the person he trades with to defeat evil, or close a hell portal… though said protagonist doesn’t necessarily survive).

ME None of this was in the brief. I gave you( KACEY)) world notes presuming that you needed to come on board fast and not read 6 novels. So I'm annoyed that the jacket, the hell portals, the salesman were all not clearly delineated for use in the story.

Johnny is powerful enough to defeat all the hell demons and hell gods in existence, but for reasons not given he is prevented by higher powers from “directly” interfering with the events of The Sha’Daa, with the exception of the “trades” that he makes… Johnny wants to save the Earth from destruction and annihilation, and has been making his trades for 10,000 years… since the last Sha’Daa occurred. ( i wasn't sure if shadaa were mystical things or a happening or both.)

I mention this because I don’t think Johnny would necessarily be party to circumstances where Willy would capture and imprison a random human being in such a macabre manner. ( i imagine ted would be quite content, really, once the shock wore off.)

If you use Johnny in your story, you need to have him making a trade (remember he requires some very personal object that a person carries with them and would normally not give up, but Johnny just has this nature that people trust) that is beneficial to a person in either helping them survive The Sha’Daa, or in closing a hell portal in some manner. ( this again, not in the one page brief "this is your mission if you choose to accept it".

A couple of times in the series folks have created a moment where someone refuses one of Johnny’s trades. This is rare, but it does happen.

I’m not dead set against unhappy endings, as it were, but just remember that the Earth cannot be destroyed or overwhelmed by some great evil by the end of The Sha’Daa 2-day event (which takes place over the summer solstice). I did not destroy the earth. Honest.

So, with all that said, I’d like to ask you to give the story a rewrite that:

1) makes a reference or two that world-wide there are crazy, unexplained things (disasters, etc.) happening that would certainly be mentioned in the news, on tv, radio, and online… (remember, the first three Sha’Daa anthologies, and the last one [INKED] all take place over the same two days that your story does… so that is a lot of wild and crazy things happening)…This again, wasn't entirely clear. Actually not mentioned at all in the original brief I was handed. I was only instructed to "ask questions." This is YOUR world, sir, you need to explain it before the author starts working. How am I to know what to ask? 

2) you mention that Whirligigs is a store in a plaza? The store exists in the heart of Chicago, across the street from Oz Park. I errored, and maybe should have checked a map. I'm not familiar that much with chicago. It really read as a suburb.

3) Johnny is not Willy’s buddy or friend… his relationship with people is always purely practical, and so Johnny would only make trades with Willy that allowed him to acquire objects that he needs for his trades around the planet (Johnny can teleport anywhere, even through time). Make sure you tailor any dialogue between them to reflect that Johnny is very serious about his 10,000-year long mission….( again not clear in the brief, and it read to me as they had a business relationship of sorts.) The need for item for trade, and johnny's mission were not at all specified. Johhny is decribed as "a salesman" and you must use him. THAT"S ALL. NOTHING MORE. 

4) perhaps you can expand on the idea of the protagonist waking up in the toy train set as part of a scenario where the person in question has to defeat an evil by traveling through a hell dimension on the toy train, accomplishing some kind of mission (with the aid of his family and friends, or not, as you see fit)… or maybe his falling victim to the curse that puts him on the train is the payment or balance necessary to close a hell portal from opening and killing every one… these are just random suggestions… the skies the limit on where you can take this. ( this part is what I think pesters me most, that I'm "too macabre" and yet defeat evil and hell portals and I think I'd have to re do an entirely different tale because this is the part where I feel "dude, I can't make this fit." This is where I'm frustrated, because what he wants is an entirely different story in my view. A spooky little train that's hexed one day of the year to take on a new passenger. I thought I'd sort of nailed that one. Meh. I was all set to mop up edits and i'm asked to rebuild it from the floorboards under pressure.

So yeah. Kind of growly that I missed the mark because I just wasn't given a clear target to start with. I dislike this sort of "you didn't give me what I want that I didn't ask for."


Well, I hope all that wasn’t too discouraging. I think you’ve got a good story in the heart of this and some rewriting and expansion can make this gem shine.


The brief: 

WillWilly Carroll, eccentric owner of the toy shop, WHIRLIGIGS, sells from the most unusual collection of baubles, diddles, playthings, gewgaws, gimcracks, knickknacks, novelties, and trinkets known to man.

His toys, both new and restored, are famous in dark corners, far off lands, and strange places for their... Unusual Abilities... and with the 10,000 year cycle between SHA'DAAs ending, his product line is in huge demand.... by both sides... those that wish to save Humanity from extinction and those that DON'T!

Your mission, Sha'Daa Writer, should you decide to accept it, is to write a chapter (short story in TOYS that is No shorter than 5,000 words and No longer than 10,000 words. And NO, there are no exceptions to this rule.

Your story must "center" around a supernatural toy that had been purchased at some time (it can have been bought many years before The Sha'Daa) from Willy Carroll's strange toy shop "Whirligigs." You do not have to create a scene at Whirligigs if you do not want to.

Cash, Credit, and Trade. Willy even takes Paypal.

 

Your mission, Sha'Daa Writer, should you decide to accept it, is to write a chapter (short story in TOYS that is No shorter than 5,000 words and No longer than 10,000 words. And NO, there are no exceptions to this rule.

Your story must "center" around a supernatural toy that had been purchased at some time (it can have been bought many years before The Sha'Daa) from Willy Carroll's strange toy shop "Whirligigs." You do not have to create a scene at Whirligigs if you do not want to.

Cash, Credit, and Trade. Willy even takes Paypal.

Willy "appears" to be about 30-35 years old. He is six-feet-tall, slim, pale skin with freckles, clean-shaven, a thick unruly shock of naturally bright red hair, and a wide grin full of bright white teeth, and a tiny sparkling diamond imbedded into his RIGHT lateral incisor..

He is the consummate huckster and salesman, shameless in the aggressive but friendly patter he throws out to snare customers.

Willy has an odd Aussie/Kiwi accent, though a native of either country would be hard pressed to pin down where he was born.

Willy's Toy Store, "Whirligigs" is located in Chicago, IL and borders Oz Park.

The front display room and sales counter of "Whirligigs" is very reminiscent of the old FAO Schwarz Fifth Avenue Toy Store shown in the movie BIG. Packages, boxed and wrapped in elaborately colored and patterned paper and ribbons, occasionally appear on a conveyor belt feeding from the high security warehousing room in the back of the store. Sometimes you can see fleeting glimpses of child-sized figures moving about in that poorly lit storage room, leading to rumors of child labor, or something.... else...

Willy, who owns a private jet and has a single-pilot jet license, flies all over the world on weekends looking for unusual and hard-to-acquire toys....

ALL stories must be told in real-time, i.e., your story must Begin at the start of The Sha'Daa, and Cannot extend beyond the immediate end of it.... in fact, most stories are required to end no sooner than 3-4 hours from the end of the 48 hour period (two days of the Summer Solstice). You can have some "flashbacks" to events that take place before The Sha'Daa, but no actual real-time scenes.

You "must" use the character Johnny The Salesman in your story. It is up to you how much you use him. THIS IS ALL I WAS FUCKING GIVEN RE THIS CHARACTER> 


***
So you want me to write in your shared world and I get a half-page of notes at the start, and a LONGER fucking edit note after, describing details that would have been better MONTHS AGO??

The story: ted, newly retired, longs to travel but his wife simply refuses. So ted gets into model trains, as a substitute for the lack of travel. He gets drawn in by this strange model set that he buys at Whirligigs that's been "charmed?cursed?) by the events of the shadaa ( still wtf) and finally finds his obsession leads him to waking up on the tiny sleeper car, and then he understands that the figures on the train landscape display are previous owners, forever living out their travel dream in miniature.

I was NOT aware I needed a fucking HELL portal.

Fuck.  

 



Oh. There was one woman I wanted to throatpunch. She was a tiny wisp of a thing, toting around her 2 yr old and 1 yr old. She's navy something or other.

She YAPPED AND YAPPED AND YAPPED. She knew everything about everything ever. At the expensive brazilian barbeque place she put food on my plate, and took food and I'm all WTF?!!! then tells me how to hold a gun properly when I mentioned the unexpected kick nearly had me punching my own face, and even K was "yeah we should have not started with that one!" and I said "lady, I was with two good instructors, we had it in hand."

Oh my god, I hope an elephant shits on her.
So the trip had some plusses: I enjoyed new york, as always, despite some searing heat. Hit a lot of museums, missed a good half of my stops on my wishlist ( i basically have plans for future trips), and ran short of cash precariously, several times. ( broken cable, lost metrocard, etc)

my "fave" gem dealer is less so, this year they seemed crotchety and tetchy, and downright rude, so I'm moving them off my list. I did grab gem cuts just to get some replicated in amethyst and garnet and the like.

The flight from TO to Newark was one I was utterly sure we'd go down in a wreck. We were hucked around in the air by a side-running line of thunderstorms down the east, so the poor wee prop commuter jet ducked and rolled and dove and sank and it was just nerve wracking. One attendant was thrown pretty hard, and a few of us were fairly queasy and rattled on landing. Getting from Newark to Manhattan isn't quite so pleasant and easy as they sell it, so it's not my first pick for NYC locale airports here on out.

Laguardia's swamped constantly so maybe JFk's the one?

This hostel this time was alright, but I prefer the HI hostel so that'll be the pick for solo trips.

Tennessee: I really had no idea what to expect. it's further into southern conservativeland than I had ventured, but I really didn't want to make this a political thing or a cultural "southern" thing, though there were a few jibes about "yankees" so I want to say the cultural divide isn't just left/right, liberal/conservative/ but it seems INGRAINED by where you live. Only a few comments, but mostly we talked writing.

Friday was the range day, and it dawned, POURING TORRENTIAL BUCKETS. we women all soldiered on, and were ready by oh eight hundred on the dot and raring to roll as the men all tweeted "nope. it's raining." We women got our shit on, and went for breakfast, and by the time we trooped out it was misty and cool, but the rain had lifted so we had a delightful time.

I'm not pro gun. They exist. I don't deny that. I don't deny that people want to own one or a few, and they have some reasons. What I don't like is untrained owners, who use it carelessly and dangerously or think it gives you some kind of...just don't wave that shit around like an idiot.

I was with military folk, one who's a range trainer and under their tutelage and practice it was all so very very responsible and safe. No one was being an "ammosexual" there to get their gun on. We were there to be social,safe and just have fun firing boomy things.

It was a large group so we did take some time and noise getting settled at stations, to the dismay of one dude not of our group and his son having some kind of elaborate gun ritual and we probably disrupted his THING, but dude, use a private range if you need 45 min to elaborately lay out and set up a shot. We just sort of "whatevered" and tiptoed around captain hothead.

I've become more...outgoing, a little more willing to just go with new things outside my comfort zone, just for the experience of it. And I had fun. I'd do it again. It's not a hobby I'm interested in here, but I'll go to a range again. I got to fire two different pistols, two long revolvers, one very old west style, and a sniper rifle.

And our instructor Mike was beyond wonderful with me and the other newb, and I got a good lesson in safe handling which is always good. Not likely I'd survive a zombie apocalypse but I might be able to stave them off a bit.

The conference was at the Chattanooga Choochoo. and the wonderful thing of all the trains, and ponds....and wee frogs in chorus as the sun went down, meeting writers and editors and being accepted, and introduced to so many people and in a way even if i felt like a proverbial frog out of the pond, I felt belonging.

I got into Buffalo, exhausted and running on fumes, and met up with friends for early dinner, before realizing I was just DONE. So a quick change of plans and I was on the bus home to toronto. Good call, that.

My lungs threw a massive freakout and this is the fifth time since having strep in december so I need to go to a doctor I guess. Need to find a new GP.

Didn't get the job I interviewed and ticked off every box on their wishlist, after three interviews so fuckem.

Next up: the degree path, and planning some travel next year too. I want to have my life "BACK" in my hands by the time I'm 50.
i've gotten smarter re issues where R thinks I'm wrong.

1. I take photo evidence.
2. Get the other person to explain it to him.

1. the ymca's layout, the school's "kinder kit display'. take pictures as proof that I didn't misread.
2. The dentist's weird billing ( turns out was a small error, because the way Bank of canuckistan does their insurance handling for employees.)

It's sad that I have to constantly document, deflect, prove but that way he can't grump up my ass sideways for percieving that I'm wrong or stupid. I'm not.

In the case of the gym, when he saw it, he grumbled mightily. In the kindergarten display 'here's what the kids need", he can't backtrack. I have it on camera.

90% less stress for me if I document my life like a CSI specialist.

***
My teeth look amazing. I'm hoping this works for job interviews, the damage on the right was VISIBLE and now it looks normal again.
i feel so alone.
Selfcare:

which means stuffing one's maw with pizza because yum and shark week loometh. I may go belly up like the proverbial goldfish but damn. what a way to go.

Got black nailpolish.:D and redying hair. Next: get it cut. I'm doing things for me, rather than forcing myself into this mundane "conservative" appearance I was holding for a job.

Going back to what is "ME".

And it feels good.

One mailing list comes in with job ads, but I've tended to get more interviews via them, though the "must have 9-9 7 days a week avail for a PT job" is so much bullshit.

Being free of the job dipshittery here is nice. If this is my cage, I'll exist in it the way I see fit. And I don't give a fuck for "the unwritten rules of fitting in" because yeah THAT WORKED SO WELL.
Soooo. LJ went the way of not good and I'm here. Once my entries export over.

One shitty interview, the first in MONTHS and it was...i mean it's clothing retail and it's a brand I liked a lot but the interviewer made a complete hay of my work gap "You did nothing in those...7 years"

Lady, I still have skills.

So I came home, vented, cried, and R just sat there. Mostly stunned as it was a sunday interview so he saw me go out prepped and ready and come home fucking crushed. He can attest, that I just didn't do a damn thing wrong.

Except answer questions clearly, thoughtfully and using experiential reference. No. It ALL came down to not the skills I can offer, but the "where I got them."

And that's the problem here. I can list the skills, and they're not from one spot alone. But no one here can read a resume and glean the picture of the candidate even if it's a fucking stellar resume. Nope.

So I went home shattered and angry. And I'm so tired of this shit, I really am. All I have, all I can bring to a workplace, doesn't matter because I had the fucking audacity to live life, to travel, to have a kid, to work hard, and it means nothing.

Of course, the other staffer on duty just stood around staring at the ceiling. Fuck, I can do that.

I don't have a car, and a house in the burbs. I didn't go from High School to College to university to baby. I took a bit of a scenic route, and suddenly that makes me fucking worthless in their eyes.

Toronto is SO utterly goddamn fucking conservative and I'm angry watching all my artist friends flee the city or find opportunities because no one ever asks a guy if he can manage parenthood and a career? and I'm ANGRY that I'm so shut out and I told r I really just can't be here and he stares. Do YOU NOT SEE me struggling so much?

I scrimp for every fucking cent to put to my work and I am TIRED of living off his pittances. I'm tired of going to events and he doesn't think we need to eat and I'm RAVENOUS as fuck and tired but he hasn't taken cash out to use. I don't have cash or credit. I am at his whim.

I'm SO fucking sick of this city that once I leave I hope the aliens vacuum this shit hole off the face of the earth like so much lazer hair removal.
whoops. three weeks since last posting? welcome to G"DAMNIT! busy!"

Not so much some kind of uber-mama busy. We're not shuttling off to playroom and classes, but life is just nuts.

I'm done the novella 2, and the end is in sight for the novel, round 2. I get more and more messages as days go by, that people really love the novel ( and the novella, that little insanely kinky happy fun book) and that's really awesome.

I have now resorted to a mere "Oh brother" eye roll when people slag off self pub as a non-legit form of work, because I guess all you indie creators in OTHER fields, hey that's cool but you writers better be properly controlled.

And its not that I hate trad. publishing. I just don't see it as a benchmark of quality, because lardy have I read some bad big press fiction. To sell my books I'd have had to drastically alter the thing to something it's really not, to either a very very strictly hetero sort of romance to fit the paranormal romance thing, or ramped up the horror in a way I didn't want. I tried. I didn't like what it had become. So I stayed true to what I wanted and people are asking "when's the next one, I'm hooked".

And then there's the "Stephen king is the only writer" who's book they slavishly follow as the end all and be all final word on writing. "Stephen King SAYS..." Oh shut the fuck up. My only honest suggestion ever: finish the first draft. Do it. Get it done. THen you have something tangible, otherwise you find a hundred reasons why you haven't finished that draft but it'll be epic when you do! I was in an online writers forum way back in the internet dark ages and people would spend endless hours upon hours "researching" before committing one scene to type.

And people still dream that once they sign on with a big press, they can quit their day job. Truth is, I know several writers and only one full time writer for traditional press, and I know one on twitter who does the same in selfpub. So it's such a longshot.

Had a nightmare last night. R has continues this benevolent picking and I swear he just doesn't realize he does it. Pick.pick. Question. Pick. If something doesn't work, assumes I just did it wrong. Pick pick. I was in a white hot rage in my dream, having been pushed just too damn far with the constant stream of small nitpicks. I know he's pissed a bit that I gained back so much of the lost weight but dude.

He gets home and I've been watching S all day and ok he's at work, but there's no switch off for me. I STILL have to watch, because he gets on line, noodles around, plays on his phone and sets S on the floor to get into shit and S moves really fast so I have to drop what I'm doing to chase the kid while r's just...lalalala

I was thinking for a bit that something was seriously wrong with me because I'm just dead exhausted constantly and it's this. I never get a moment off. I had to go do a token grocery run because I wanted just 20 min where I didn't have S screaming in my ear. He's terribly fond of this pterodactylian screech!! and some days it just shatters my brain.

Took S to get his MMR last week. I have to find a new fucking office before I punch this one nurse-receptionist. Weighing S, she could NOT figure out how the slide balance scale worked, to the point I was ready to offer to do it. S was bawling his heart out and climbed out in tears before she was done, clinging to me. We got him to stand on the adult scale which is digital instead. One other visit she snapped at him for being fussy. This time she's "He's not EXACTLY 12m so we can't do the MMR." Uh bitch. Yes. You can. I made this appt specifically for that and if you tell me after our bus/subway schlep up here...

Thing is, Alberta, specifically where we're going, had a sizeable measles outbreak thankyou all you gobshite antivaxers and the health dept suggested ( a month ago?) that all infants 6-12 in the area or travelling TO, get the MMR. My sister's kid is unvaxed, supposedly. So. We get his before we go.

The nurses when I told them this were "weelllll it's their choice, they often wait til kid starts school" No. No No. Seriously. Waffling like fools on this? Vaccinate your fucking KID.

Playroom's fine, aside from the days where this nitwit mom shows up. She has a 7 weeker, and her 4 year old daughter, J. J is an asshole kid. J PINS OTHER KIDS down and steals their toys and then flips her shit when the victim takes the toy back. Mom sits on her duff and coos "J, no. J No. we'll leave if you don't listen." no actual action. Someone offers tantrumming J a soothing hug and J goes back to terrorizing other kids and mom just SITS there. J is an asshole child. Upside I over heard they were moving out of the area so they won't be at this drop in much longer.

Pride was ok, except once again R doesn't realize most booths were cash only ( so no grub) and we waited almost an hour for a friend to meet up with us because, as I discovered later, she'll shop one booth for 45 min to buy one T shirt. S was solidly exhausted. And the parade went for 5 or 6 hours, we only stayed for 2.

But fun.

Anyway. A shit ton of work to do, and my allergies are on the rampage and it's late so I'm crawling back to bed.

Need to cure R of that nitpick/pecking. I booked an appt at Apple's genius bar because my phone is wonk, and the only appts closest were canada day. Mall's open, so Ok. Booked. R was "are you SURE they have appointments?" well, yeah didn't just do this by "deciding " on a day and time. Went to their site. "Huh. Weird. ok. Are you sure". BOOK IT YOUR FUCKING SELF YOU JACKOFF IF YOU THINK I CAN"T READ A FUCKING WEB SITE PROPERLY.

Always with the presumption I've made a mistake. I'm incompetent, I need fixing and guidance and nudging and if I could just BE more perfect nudge peck peck peck. I'm so fucking sick of it. There will come a reckoning. And when I tell him to not do that he gets all defensive. I honestly think he has no idea he's doing it.

one week and a couple days till the travel slog starts. Wheee. SO much to get done. And he's questioning half my plans and shit. He doesn't travel well sometimes, he gets overwhelmed by detail and starts zoning out and being spacy because his brain blue-screens on me. And so I generally plan to be the kid-wrangler and ready to step in as he...dude's got some classic ADHD moments. not gonna lie.
Today I'm tired. I can't post on reddit, he reads. I'm tired of feeling like a jobless failure. Tired of him coming home pissy and surly from work and yeah it sucks to telecommute after hours but please take it out on me.

Tired of everything I do being nitpicked because clearly I'm imperfect. I was half way through arranging cards in a 3 buck frame when he has to PICKPICK. It looked fine the way I did it. Apparently I'm fucking stupid.

Tired of him snapping at me because the baby gets some of his food on his hands.S grabbed the spoon full o mushy meat and veggies and R FREAKED, sighed, took the bowl. PICKPICK.

TIRED. I'm being pecked to death. Everything I do is up for quality inspection and scrutiny and critique and I'm SO fucking tired. I started thinking I was seriously ill because no one can be this tired right? I sleep 8 hours and I'm still ass-dragging tired. I'm so tired I want to cry. I started thinking tonight, just keep pushing asshole, and I'll fucking blow my own head off or something just to make this fucking nitpick and exhaustion stop. I cannot EVER WIN.

I seriously think about walking away when he's in these moods. I'm sorry I'm a fat, tired, unemployed person. I don't GET a chance to eat half the time and then it's shove something in my face and keep going. I could go get a job, if he doesn't mind that the entire salary would go to childcare or I could work evenings and never see anyone. I seriously want to drift him in the head with a frypan and go "if you think you can do a better job, have at it."

And I'm tired of picking up after him. I pick up after him, the dog, the baby, and one of those is perfectly fucking capable of putting his fucking dishes in the sink and empty soda bottles in the bin and for the LOVE OF FUCK its me he harps on for my jewelery supplies and I'm trying to get organized.

I'm just so fucking tired of this. I love my son but I'm clearly just a shit human being and who gives a fuck right? I'd LIKE to eat healthy and go to the gym but I never ever have time.

Its at the point where I don't want to wake up. I'm just that tired and feeling like shit. I try to be grateful and nice and what does it get me? SHIT ON.
Gad the whining in this chainmailler's FB group....

The newbies whine and whine. Rings are too expensive. Too hard to cut. Steel's too hard to use. Steel's too heavy for jewelery. Silver's too expensive. Silver's easy to dent. Gold's too expensive. Copper tarnishes. Burrs. Colors wear away.

They seem to prefer aluminum by and large which in 20g size is JUNK. then they whine they don't sell. They whine about everything. MY GOD ITS FULL OF WHINING.


And more people slagging self pub as "I just won't ever read it. Snoot snoot." Because its ok to be an indie musician, an indie artist, and indie craftsperson but WOE upon you wordsmith! you MUST be vetted and edited and validated or you're not "legit".

I present to you the big publisher houses: 50 shades of grey. Twilight. The autobiography of Snookie from Jersey Shore. Sure.

I went to see Daniel Lanois speak on sunday and it was amazing. He delights in new things, new experiences, new ways of doing things. A sense of adventure. He spoke of how fond he was of the people who he works with and the idea that creativity and things are a two way street, and you should surround yourself with people who want your success as much as their own.

And that's what I've been trying to do. I am not "helping" people who have burned me, you got your chance and that's all you get.

Ok. Time to feed small thing. We went to the pool today and swam the ya-yas out. Novella 2 is in the edit spin cycle now.

So much to do before dcon. But we're doing ok.
Tonight I posted the 12 feet of chain I made to a fb chainmail group.

An hour or so later, one of the members says "how much do you charge for 18 inches of it" and i replied thinking she was asking out of "what does your work go for comparison" and she replies "SOLD".

Now wait a second, sold? did I say it was up for sale? You ask "May I purchase a length?"

So I said um, this is spoken for, and I can make more.

"Ok, and make it perfect! I'll be checking!"

With rings that small, there's bound to be some imperfect closures and I suspected that she doesn't know this and I'm starting to get annoyed.

I reply "i've been doing this for 8 years. I'm not a newbie. No sale."

Half an hour later "i'm sorry I was an asshole, I was just teasing."

No, you're just sorry that you didn't get what you wanted. She wanted it because she doesn't work that tiny and she wanted to "feel" what it was like. So...get some smaller pliers toots. Start working.

She brags constantly how awesomely awesome superduper she is in all things customer service and chainmail and uh, she came off like a complete donkey turd.

Best sale I ever turned down. She found someone else. I don't need that shit.

But WTF, man. I wouldn't go to my good friend and say "gimme. how much? and make sure it's perfect" because that's just rude.
I am just so fucking tired lately. This cold was a brutal one, and once it decided to leave my lungs, it went right up into my ears. The blocked ears, the dizziness, the fucking 28c/80% humidity no goddamn AC and I'm dizzy, sick, dehydrated, puking, coughing, not sleeping.

And oh could you do the dishes walk the dog do the laundry care for child finish the books do merch?

For the last 4 days I've had this gross taste in my mouth and it helps me feel ill too and trying to get liquids in and I just want to vomit right now. I AM SO FUCKING SICK AND BURNED OUT.

Then R is on one of his pick-pick benders and it just feels like I'd be better off walking. He at least took the dog out. I was really close to smashing every fucking bowl in the house. I'm tired of cleaning these massively heavy glass bowls he eats his fucking salads in. I'm SO VERY TIRED of cleaning all the bowls and bottles every fucking night. I am tired of empties he never moves to the recyc basket. I'm tired. I'm tired of this tiny fucking apartment and the fucking stupid elevators. Every where I turn I crash into shit.

It took three fucking hours to do laundry last night because of those fucking elevators. It should have taken half that. Next place is 2br, and INSUITE FUCKING LAUNDRY. BONUS FOR A FUCKING DISHWASHER SCREW THIS SHIT.

There's stuff I need to get done without a child being winged at me and I'm too sick to do half of it because every time I move I want to puke.
adventures in modern parenting!

Today at the playroom all the small ones were getting their yayas out in the gym, which is good because after a weekend of a cold, S had an abundance of yaya. I set him loose on the floor and he goes as usual, hellbent for leather, and he's getting red knees ( if I'd known it was a gym day I'd have put him in pants, but these are unscheduled things).

And then he gets all out of sync and kissed the floor. A tiny split lip, and I picked him up as he cried at the cruelty of gravity betraying him. He was calmed in a minute and "ok! lets go again!" and on to the floor and off and crawling, over it. He's fucking resilient.

All the other parents were "aghast! shock" and I'm, red knees and a floor kissing isn't that bad for him. He took a header off the bed and now he understands there's a drop. He flings himself forward and knows where the edge of the crib is. He's learning the limits of his environment and how it functions and how to assess that as he gets more mobile. This is not a bad thing. It sucks because the booboo count is high, but otherwise, this is why we now have to TELL people not to stand at the edge of crumbling cliffs, or that scaling an animal enclosure is a bad thing. Because they don't have the brains to figure it out, someone was always there to stop them if they were in danger.

Someone isn't always going to be there.

We let him get frustrated. We let him work out how to pull things into his crib. Doing it for him isn't helping. His job is to learn and work this stuff out. We're there when he needs it but we give him ample opportunity to work it out, we say "work it out, dude." he needs to learn frustration, coping with failure, earning success, persistence, resilience.

Today there was a 17m old kid that S fairly towers over, but the kid is vaguely aware S is a baby and therefore not fully "aware" of social norms at the toddler level. S kept going for the same toy the kid had and the other kid was getting fracked right off. S doesn't NEED that toy there's hundreds of others. I took the toy from S and handed it back to the kid. "SHARE!" hollers the other mom.

No. Your kid doesn't need to share, because mine's being grabby. Later other kid had a coveted Alligator pull along that S adores, and stalks the playroom for. He chased it as the other kid pulled it, and once in a while S caught it, and I'd peel his wee fingers off.

Forced sharing isn't a good lesson. That's "I want what you have and you want to be nice so you'll just give me what I want, right?" Not a good thing.

Voluntary sharing is "I like you and respect you and here, have some of my cake because I have some to give." we encourage that one.( well right now it seems to be germs.)

I'm so tired of cosseted, coddled, entitled kids. Let them get grubby. let them split a lip. Let them learn what its like when the universe doesn't hinge on their every whim. Honestly.

I like that my kid meets a variety of cultures and languages, and old people, homeless people, diversity. He's equally acccepting whoever greets him. This is a good lesson. ( the "watch out for iffy folk", that'll follow. I don't want to instill him with a fear of the world, that its dangerous and he must be coccooned. I want to say "this is the world, kid, here's your survival tips."

I just know too many adults who are helpless, needing parents to manage their schedule even as they work FT and go to school. If you're in college and you're 20, mommy shouldn't be bringing you to your doc's appts and sitting in. If you're in college and you're 20, you shouldn't have to give up your life to constantly entertain and thus make your assignments late because they monopolize your time. Cut the apron strings. If you're 20, you should all things being "normal within a range of normal", make a meal, find an apartment, open a bank account, do your laundry, manage your schedule and make mistakes. You should function as an adult not as a child.

radical concept, I know. I am so over the helpless adult syndrome, because their parents told them the world was scary and they're afraid to even call a cab, or take transit and could someone pleeeeese help them? Tired of people on FB who post "I wanna cupcake because I'm cute" and 30 people respond like pavlov's dog and offer cake. Get your own fucking cake, darling.

I'll be there to guide S, to teach him, to be the Mama in boots who has his back, but I'm not going to be some helicopter mama clearing all in his path. Nope. You might have to eat dirt a few times, kiddo. Its good for you.
R is chomping on my head to get the books done and this week I'm felled by asthma AGAIN and S has a cold and he's not sleeping and I'm not sleeping and what the fuck am I supposed to magically do?

I nearly lost it after i was up till 4 am with S last night and could NOT get him to sleep more than 20min at a go. I couldn't write because just as I'd start "waahhhhh".

What does R do? stomps out and takes over. Its ok if he's tired, to be grumpy but I better greet each day with a fucking song and a smile even if I've gotten 20 seconds of sleep and I have a ton of work that won't get done.

He got to go to a show. I haven't had a baby free couple hours for well on two, three weeks now. I'm SO fucking fried.
R tells me he doesn't think women exactly assume their blind date will rape them and leave them in an alley.

I said probably not, but the fear is there, not because every guy does this, but because a lot of guys do act as if sex is theirs for demand, after a meal, or a movie. Setting aside every loopy girl I know in HS who used sex to manipulate guys, the power is still in their favor.

Guys are told to get the girl, get the pussy, be a man. Girls are told not to make a scene, don't challenge the guy, don't make more than them, don't outshine them, don't give them sex because then you're a slutty slut.

When I left an abusive boyfriend, welfare asked if I was sure I just couldn't reconcile, and save them the paperwork. All the checks, even for me, came in HIS name.

I went on a date in vancouver and ordered a salad ( wasn't hungry) and later I got demanded for sex, on the basis I had ordered salad.

Another date dumped me off the the overpass ramp because "he just didn't feel a connection." Didn't even leave me near a fucking bus stop. Pull over the car and lob you out.

I've never been physically abused, but I was in some pretty fucked up relationships. I want to say it's partly because we seem to teach guys this weird "be a gentleman and you'll get sex" thing, and then there's all the "Nah, be the manly man and the ladies will fall at your feet".

And we teach girls to play into this too, or that we'll just question what they're wearing or what they said when they go to the police with their clothes in tatters.

That aside, I don't anticipate any real change in US gun culture. I'm at the point of "another shooting, whatever. Its the price you wanted to pay for freedom, to blow the heads off innocents."

We've had shootings here, but not even close to the crap the US has, even accounting for population. Why is that, exactly? ( I know the answer.)
Lovely day out for a 6 mile walk with the Boy and husb. We hit the chinese bakeries and markets for produce, then down to queen where I bought swanky leather flats for summer, and some shorts and a skirt.

And I realize I've got a bit big. All this FOOD. a year without food left me kind of...yeah well probably gotta drop 20. Not quite pre preg weight but I know I gotta do this. The three rounds of prednisone, surgery and pnuemonia and asthma attack in three months did no favors.

So ok.

And while I was out walking Sera this grade A fucking Douchenugget is riding his bike on the sidewalk. Its a crowded walk and he's barging through. "get off the fucking sidewalk, asshole" I said. He replies in a whiny "mew mew mew" mocking sound. "Jackass." I said. "Lose some weight" says he.

Of course. The go to insults when a woman asserts that you're a jerk: we're fat, sluts, bitches and whores. I know your kind, you sorry little pinheaded fuckwit. You don't scare me. You annoy me with your pissy little attitude that the universe revolves around your special self. You rode your bike through a narrow stretch of sidewalk crowded with people. You had no legal right to be on the fucking sidewalk and I wish it were legal to kick your wheels out from under you.

You just ride that little snotty attitude, sir. I fervently hope you hit the biggest pothole, and get doored so fucking hard you wake up and have to re learn your name. Because you're an asshole. You're an entitled little asshole and this last week has been full up on that shit.

And then I have a little less respect for cyclists. The women abide by laws, the guys just don't give a fuck.

At least he's not in a car, he'd be an asshole no matter how he was transporting himself and I suspect he'd be the dude on his phone that plows through yellow lights and plays chicken with pedestrians. At least on a bike he's unlikely to kill anyone. ( it has happened tho).

(Its not like he was in Tour-de-France shape himself so, uh dude, you wanna talk body size? Bring it on.)

Between the shootings, teh whining MRA rights dudes in the hood always with their posters and the pickup artists that haunt eaton center, I'm so over petulant entitled doodbro. Upside the PUA's leave me the fuck alone with the stroller. And a perfected death glare. Seriously. Fuck not with the Mama in Boots.
run, keep running.

clean the house, feed and entertain the small one, change the small one, errands, more cleaning, keep running, make jewelery, write, keep running.

R trimmed one of seras claws too short. AGAIN. Blood everywhere. Next time I'll find a fucking groomer.

Thinking of doing a major social media purge of dead-relationships. I'm tired of one sided efforts. If we haven't talked in a year, its a safe bet we're not talking any time soon.

Still waiting on novel reviews from copies sent over 8months ago. Gonna venture out on a limb here and say people probably wanted the freebie and didn't ever intend to follow through.

Still have to run some stuff down to the garbage bins, but my motivation for it? It can wait, its just cardboard and unlike everyone else, I refuse to stack it in the hall for someone else to clean up.

Bug, it sleeps. When we get back from travel in july, will prob. get gym membership to use to get me fit and him worn down.

dreamt last night that we decided to leave him in a train station. And 5 steps away I felt like I'd lost everything and ran back for him. The emptiness was so profound I could still feel it 12 hours later. Brains do strange things in dreams.

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