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Category: Writing

The Man – Taylor Swift

The Man – Taylor Swift

I’ve not watched the MTV VMAs since probably the late 90s. I’ve probably not turned on MTV since like 2006 or something. So I’m not really interested in who wins those things. That said, Taylor Swift won the Best Music Video Direction VMA for her direction of her video for her song The Man.

Honestly I’ll take any excuse to post this video or this song. I fell in love with it when I first heard it on her Tiny Desk Concert performance for NPR. She does take so much crap from people for simply writing songs about what is going on in her life. Things that a man would not be criticized for.

Anyway, watch the video. It’s worth it.

Bill and Ted Face The Music

Bill and Ted Face The Music

Tomorrow, August 28, 2020 will be a most excellent day. For this is the day that I can finally watch Bill and Ted 3 aka Bill and Ted Face The Music.

We first discovered the original Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure as a rental from our local Mom and Pop video rental store (RIP Videos Unlimited). In my memory, my Dad and I would rent it every weekend to the chagrin of my Mom and Sister. We probably only rented it every other weekend. But that movie contains three of my favorite elements of a good story:

  • Heart
  • Comedy
  • Time Travel

It was just the perfect film for us. So once it came time for the sequel, Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey, we went and saw it in the theater. And… we liked it. Not as much as the first film, though, because the sequel was different. They don’t really time travel, but rather visit Heaven and Hell. But as the years have gone on, I have come to enjoy Bogus Journey ALMOST as much as Excellent Adventure. Except for the aliens named Station. They still aren’t for me.

Since they are doing PR to support the film, there have been a ton of articles about the movies. This one from is as good as any. It gets into the struggle to get the movie made and how the originals gained in popularity through the years. It’s worth your time.

So yeah, I plan on purchasing Bill and Ted Face The Music tomorrow and watching it that night. I can’t think of a better way to start the weekend.

The Kids Are Away So The Cats Will Play

The Kids Are Away So The Cats Will Play

My kids went back to school yesterday (Tuesday, 8/26/2020) wearing masks and all. This is what we chose for a couple of reasons. First, the school seems to have a good plan to keep the kids safe as possible, keeping them distanced and wearing their masks. Second, trying to teach them at home in March just didn’t work out well. Anyway, the school sent every kid home with a chromebook on the first day, so if things get locked down again each kid will have technology to learn from home.

I’ve been working from home since March and will be doing that through the end of the year, most likely. When I first started working from home, our cats liked to hang around with me. Eventually I set up shop in a room we had in our finished basement. The cats followed me, but grew bored of it I think.

I’ve noticed the last few days, however, that the seem to be clinging to me a little closer. Maybe it’s because the kids are at school. As you can see from the photo above, it makes it a bit more challenging to work.

Schroedinger’s Gift

Schroedinger’s Gift

I wrote this is for the Advent Ghosts 2018 at I Saw Lightning Fall. Our challenge was to write short snippets of 100 words.

Once upon a time a troll gave me a gift.

“The day you die, you will open this box,” she said.

I cast it into a nearby stream and watched it float away.

It was waiting for me the next morning in my childhood closet.

I nearly opened it at University the night of my first true heartbreak.

…and after our first real fight (it met the wood-burning stove that night).

…and when I lost my job.

…and when I lost her.

My lonely, arthritic hands tremble as I chuck it into the bin on this cold Christmas morn.

Not today.

Fiction: A Chapter 7

Fiction: A Chapter 7

Note: this is a bit of a story I wrote for a writing contest. I’m posting it here for posterity.

Chapter 7

Johnny pulled the shotgun away from his head and ran to the cabin door, still clutching the weapon in his right hand. In one swift motion he opened the old cabin door, herded Scott inside and locked the door behind.   The two boys stood silently staring at each other, neither one quite sure how to react. Scott felt an urge to punch Johnny in the face, but decided against it when he remembered Johnny was still holding a loaded shotgun.

As the emotion of the past few days became too much for him, Johnny began to sob uncontrollably. “You have to believe me that I didn’t know they were going to kill him,” said Johnny in between tears. “My brother told me he just wanted to embarrass Sam, like he always embarrassed Mike,” said Johnny.  “You know I could never say no to my brother.  He scares me too much.”

Johnny’s brother, Mike, and Sam had been rivals for years.  Both boys competed for the starting quarterback position in high school as well as the affections of the prettiest girl in school.  Sam always seemed to be a little better than Mike, though, and he was the one who led the team to the playoffs senior year and took the Homecoming Queen to the prom.  After high school, Mike’s life took a turn for the worse and Sam always seemed to be there to catch him.

“Why didn’t you tell me Johnny?” said Scott, still struggling with the idea of his best friend being an accomplice in his brother’s murder.  “You were my best friend.”

“I would’ve told you, but I didn’t know what to say,” said Johnny as he stared at the faded wooden floor of the cabin. “I don’t know what went wrong.  Mike must have been using me as a diversion to keep Sam off his tail while they killed that guy Sam found in the woods.”

Scott was not entirely sure he could trust Johnny’s story and doubted he could ever forgive him for what happened to his brother.  However, he also knew he could not make it out of the woods alive without Johnny’s help. Whether he liked it or not, his fate was now tied to Johnny’s fate.  Scott knew he had to make it out of the woods alive. Otherwise his brother’s murder would go unpunished.

“We need to get out here as fast as we can and tell the police what happened,” said Scott.  “Sooner or later your brother is going to come back here and they’re probably going to kill me.  Do you think you can hot wire the truck?”

“I’m sure I could, but why would I need to do that?” answered Johnny, grinning as he pulled the keys of the truck out of his pants pocket.

“Here’s what we’ll do then,” said Scott. “Let’s make a run for the truck and drive as fast as we can away from here.”

“That will never work,” said Johnny. “Mike and Bill can’t be that far away.  They could be in the truck right now waiting for you.  I’ll stay behind and distract them while you drive away. They’ll trust me.”

“But they’ll kill you,” said Scott.

“If one of us doesn’t distract them, they’ll kill us both,” said Johnny. “At least I have a chance with my brother.”

“Let’s do it then,” said Scott as he extended his right hand toward Johnny.  Both boys shook hands, not knowing if they would ever see each other again.

Johnny and Scott ran out of the cabin in opposite directions, Scott toward the truck and Johnny far away from it.

As Scott sped west down the trail, dust clouds following behind, he heard a loud shotgun blast.  A tear ran down Scott’s cheek as he realized he would never see his friend Johnny again.