Saturday, December 16, 2006

Changes Coming Soon

I've decided to host a separate blog to address comic books and my path towards writing them. From time to time there will be some cross over between the two blogs here, but the main purpose of the new Comic Book Observatory is to have a separate outlet for my personal life and ideas that are outside of comics. I will of course be providing links to each blog.

What this change holds for Desultory Views is both cosmetic and aesthic. I'll be altering the links available here by getting rid of the comic book ones and adding in other links to sites I find helpful, insightful, and entertaining. I am also hoping that having them both separate will allow me to be more focused on what I want to write here and on the other blog. Too often I struggled with what to write and how to balance my comics ideas and opinions with everything else. I was uncomfortable with the amalgamation and I think this will be easier for me despite what may look like extra work. We'll see.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Moving Slowly

The march to the holidays and Christmas specifically is slowly marching on. With the triplets being young and a major undertaking to bring anywhere, we've decided to not go anywhere this year and instead have opened our home to friends and family.

It looked like we were just going to have our close friends here for dinner, with my family having Christmas at my youngest sister's house, but in true trailer-trash fashion, she finds a way to jeopardize everything and gets thrown in jail for almost two weeks because of fighting with my mother and niece and having three outstanding warrants for her arrest. To top it off her husband just lost his job for reasons I am not clear on and they don't have money for themselves for Christmas (or presents for their kids) or even rent and food. Merry Christmas huh?

My sister has things like this happen to her all the time. She refuses to do the right thing and instead lives solely for the pursuit of her desires and pleasures to the detriment of her kids and husband. Drugs, alcohol, and material gain are all placed adoringly ahead of the important basics of shelter, food, and health for her and her kids. In the past my wife and I have opened our home to them and bought them a van, gotten them jobs, kept their family together, and put them on the path to living a smart and secure life; but they have thrown it all away again and I no longer the ability to assist them even if I wanted to. My biggest task will be to try and resist feeling guilt or pity when the inevitable happens.

In more pleasant areas, the kids have just been great. For sure they have their moments of crying, whining, and being all-around cranky, but they're babies and teething and that's to be expected. Each day I get to spend with them I can almost feel the bond between us growing stronger and stronger. I might just be imagining things, but I think I see them each being a bit more calm and happy when I am holding them or near them. The crying seems less, the smiles seem greater, and they are always focused on my voice and my image to see what is happening. It's like getting hit in the gut with sledgehammer--it that strong and overpowering---except it's a joyous rapture.

Today also marked the first major excursion I've ever taken with the babies. I had to make a stop at work today to drop something off, so I loaded up the kids and we all went out. They are too big to use the smaller strollers, so I packed the big triplet stroller and they got to meet some of my co-workers. They were a big hit and everyone was wonderfully nice to the four of us. Thankfully the kids were all in great moods and they put on quite a show of smiles, coos, and giggles for everyone to see. Perrin was exceptionally happy when I picked him up to show him off. It just makes for a great experience.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Energy Siphon

It seems that the days are all starting to smash together into an almost unrecognizable blob. Every day I wake up and wish for just 30 minutes of quiet, uninterrupted time to myself so that I can write something, even if it's just a few sentences at a time, but it doesn't come. It doesn't come with any kind of consistency at least. As the days progress I fear that I am going to go to bed one day soon and when I wake up I'll be 75.

The triplets are really starting to demand my attention with greater frequency these days. I don't mind, but it sure does add to the above feeling I've been having of late. The biggest thing with them is that they are teething, so they go from periods of joy, to crankiness, to absolute hunger! It's funny, exhausting, and enriching at the same time, but it sure as hell keeps me away from writing. I have to keep telling myself that it will get better soon and that eventually I'll begin to have time to write. Hopefully that happens very soon.

The Chicago area seems to be a hot bed of idiots lately. Within the past few days there have been three separate incidents of violence and death. One guy from out of state opened up fire on police officers in a high school parking lot (after hours) after being pulled over for a traffic concern; a disenfranchised inventor killed three lawyers over a dispute involving a patent for a toilet for trucks; and another man was arrested attempting to buy grenades to blow up a shopping mall. It's just totally bizarre. I guess it interests me because I frequently feel frustrated and overwhelmed, but I've never even come close to thinking about doing a stunt like these. When I think about all the mental anguish, pain, and insanity that must be going through those guys minds to do those things, it makes me appreciate the sanity and security that I have in my life, regardless of my opportunities to write.

On the plus side, I did recently get a chance to write a review of a comic book. Over a month ago I joined a website called Silver Bullet Comics to write reviews. With everything I have going on, it took time for me to get to this, but I eventually did and I just submitted that first review the other day. I'm still waiting for it to be posted, but I am excited to have gotten one done and to at least have accomplished something. Hopefully I can get back into a groove and start doing this on a more regular basis, especially once the holidays have passed.

I've also been doing some thinking about blogs and websites and I think I am going to go back to trying to write two separate blogs and bring back the Comic Book Observatory in some for or another. I just don't feel comfortable mixing comics with everything else here. Comics are such a passionate and specific area for me that I feel comfortable that I can easily provide material for a separate blog. I do want to give it a better look than it previously had, so it may be about a week or so as I play around with a template or layout. I'll let everyone know once I get that done. For now, that's all I've got.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

The Holidays Part 1

Well, the first of the holidays have come and went and life has now officially become more hectic, more surreal, and more silly. It's just the nature of things and as much as I hear people complain about it, (myself included) I really do enjoy it.

We had a rather small gathering here at our place this year, just my wife's parents and her youngest sister. We had a great time together and my wife made a wonderful turkey that was the most juicy and delicious bird I have ever had. She put a nice thick apricot glaze on it and injected a butter marinade under the skin. This bird was so moist that when I was carving it kept breaking apart. That's just a good bird right there.

The Thanksgiving weekend wasn't much of a holiday for me though. Working retail really sucks when you're part of a service economy and instead of shopping or hanging with my family, I was working on Black Friday. It wasn't totally bad, as I made close to $800 that day, which is always nice! But I would have rather made that on another day and had time to spend with family. I also ended up not working on either Saturday or Sunday though; Saturday because of baby shower that I wanted to attend, and on Sunday I had an accident that really wiped me out.

I was in my bedroom and I was getting ready to leave and walk out the bedroom door when I got distracted. Not paying attention, I went to exit very quickly and I walked straight into my door!! Now, I'm not talking about walking into a closed door, I'm talking about walking into the small, solid side of an open door. I walked head on into it and just smashed my head and face against the edge so hard that I am surprised I didn't break it. (If you know me personally you know exactly what I mean here). It hurt quite a bit and I have a nicely injured face and forehead and some rather sensitive and nasty lumps on the top of my head. I've had some nasty headaches since then and it hurts tremendously when I bend down. Ouch!

With all that excitement I am a bit behind on getting my Christmas decorations up, but that ok as I expect to have that completed almost entirely tomorrow. I don't do anything fancy yet, but I do want to make it nice. We are supposed to have snow at the end of the week, so I'd like to get this done quickly before the cold and snow appear. We'll see how far I get, but the weather isn't cooperating as it is pouring outside now while we speak. Looks like I'll have to burn the remaining leaves the hard way.

Once again it's late and I really should get some sleep before the kids get up in the morning, they got up at 5am this morning. I will try and post again real soon.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Almost A Month

I haven't gone this long without writing on my own volition, it's hasn't been a month, but it feels like it's been forever.

The blogs aren't the only places I haven't been writing, I haven't written a single thing other than a few grocery lists. God, I feel like a slug.

I'm trying real hard to get things ready for the holidays. We've got my wife's parents and her little sister coming in for the weekend. It's going to be nice to see them, but it's also going to be depressing as hell. Sometimes I wonder what thje purpose of having family and friends are for if you can't get together and celebrate the holidays at the very least. I suppose that's one of those depressing little facts we learn about all too late after becoming adults.

I don't really have too much here to say at the moment, I wanted to write something down before any remaining talen and skill I had imploded. I need to get my mind sharpen as all the TV I've started to watch concerns me; perhaps my mind has dulled?

Despite that, I'm still really enjoying three shows out on TV now; Jericho, Heroes, and The Office. It should go without saying that if I don't enjoy a show I probably won't be watching it, but I do galnce at other shows, it's just that these stand out. Well, these and some of the survival shows from the discover channel, which I freely admit to being addicted to.

It's now 2:30am and I think my son Perrin has finally relaxed and is sound asleep, so I am going to join him so that I can have the energy to take care of the kids tomorrow.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

A Change in the Guard

Wow, what a couple of days these past few have been. By Tuesday night it was reported that the Democrats had taken majority control of the House of Representatives and this evening the Senate also came under their majority. It's no wonder that Donald Rumsfeld resigned as Defense Secretary. This is the best political news I've heard in quite awhile.

More can be said about the current state of US politics than I have the desire of room to write about here, but I will say that I'm glad that the Republicans have lost influence with the American people to go along with their power in Congress. It is my opinion that the country is in worse condition now than it was before baby Bush's term in office.

Despite the changing of the guard I am still very concerned about the situation in Iraq. Right or wrong, whether I disagree or not, we are there and so are our troops. To completely pull out our troops would be a mistake of catastrophic proportions in my opinion. Everything that has happened would most likely be erased and the average people we are trying to liberate from tyranny and give a democratic voice to would be the ones who suffer cruelly. I think the important thing to do would be to choose a plan to stabilize the new Iraqi government and then to slowly pull out as the Iraqi people and way of life becomes safe for all.

Lost amid all of this giant turn around is that Nancy Pelosi will be the next Speaker of the House of Representatives in January. The significance of this development is that she will become the highest ranking woman in American political history, just three steps from the White House. In this day and age of high terrorism it isn't too hard to think of a scenario that would bring her to swearing an oath to lead this country.

On the local front 9 out of 10 people I voted for won. I am excited because I think it shows that the people who came out to vote did a better job of understanding the facts and the issues than they normally do. I know for a fact that my wife and I pledged out votes to candidates that were either concerned with the needs of our area, had a track record of supporting and promoting our concerns and needs, or were highly qualified for the positions they ran for. Party politics didn't play a part in any of my decisions, but my ballot heavily favored the Democrats.

Well, it's late and I think I finally got my daughter to conk out and go to sleep, so I will do the same. Hopefully I will get another chance tomorrow to write again.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Half The Man I Used To Be

What a weekend this has been. It started off early for me on Friday when I went and had a vasectomy. The wife and I agree that three kids are more than enough for the two of us and we don't really want any late in life surprises, so the most logical option was for me to get snipped. All and all I think the whole procedure went very well.

Friday was the toughest day for me. There wasn't a lot of pain, but the meds I took for the procedure were pretty strong and they made me really sleepy. I think I may have slept most of the day and evening on Friday, and then got up to help Meva feed the kids and I was up again until 2:30 am with Perrin when he decided he needed to talk to me for a few hours.

I've heard some rather disturbing stories from some guys who've gone through this about the pain they were in and all the down time they had as a result, but I didn't really feel that at all. The pain has really not been there, aside from a few instances, and I haven't had the need to ice myself down very much at all. In fact, had Perrin not kept me up so late I was going to go to work the next day! Even though I didn't I still busted my balls (yeah, that was intended) on Saturday doing laundry and cleaning the house and then going to the grocery store. I never had any problems the entire day. I don't know why it was so easy for me, but whatever the reason I am thankful for it.

With Halloween over the silly season has officially begun. The stores are already putting out there Christmas items (many started before Halloween) and I'm seeing people in my neighborhood getting their yards and houses ready for the decorations. I'm thinking that I would like to get a jump on my stuff this year before it gets cold and snowy, because with the kids here it will make it that much harder if I wait.

Comics were mostly disappointing this past week, nothing I read wowed me or really got me juiced. That hasn't happened in awhile, so hopefully this coming week will make up for it. Thankfully I have 3 volumes of Essential Amazing Spiderman to keep me company until then.

Well it's 2 am and I need to hit the sack before those babies wake up and beat me around for tomorrow. If I'm lucky they will give me a bit of time to post again tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

I'm Back

I'm beginning to hate Google. Because of their poorly though out policies and lack of any type of decent customer service I no longer have access to any of my previous blogs. After trying to get some resolution for the last month, I decided to just suck it up and start anew.

One thing I decided is that since I have such little time available to me these days, I needed to drop one of my blogs, so I have waved goodbye to The Comic Book Observatory for the time being. I can't say if or when I will ever pick that back up, so anything that has to do with comic books will be written about here as well.

As for the look of the blog, it's the same as the last version. I really liked the look of that big moon and I found the layout to be easy to use, so here we are. I still have some tweaking to do with adding a few more links and such, but I will have that completed by the end of the week, babies willing.

Tomorrow is Wednesday and that brings with it new comics, which is a great thing. While I wish I could buy everything I find interesting, I am limiting tomorrow to the following books:

52 #26
Exterminators #11
Jonah Hex #13
JLA #3
Mystery In Space #3
Incredible Hulk #100
Mouse Guard #5

I'm really excited about getting Jonah Hex tomorrow because Palmiotti and Gray are going to tell his origin. What this means is that we're finally going to get to learn how his face got so scared and why he's living the life he does. After reading the Showcase Presents Jonah Hex that DC put out last year, I really have grown to enjoy that character and they have nailed it perfectly! It's a must read for me each month. Go and check it out for yourself if you don't believe me.