Monthly Archives: July 2006

Happy Bastille Day to All!

Happy Bastille Day

The Worst Treason – by Victor Hugo

Translated by: Henry Carrington

The deepest infamy man can attain,
Is to strangle Rome, or France enchain;
Whate’er the place, the land, the city be,
‘T is to rob man of soul and liberty;
‘T is with drawn sword the senate to invade,
And murder law in its own court betrayed.
To enslave the land is guilt of such black dye,
It is ne’er quitted by God’s vengeful eye;
The crime once done, they day of grace expires,
Heaven’s punishment, which, howe’er slow, ne’er tires,
Begins to march, and comes serene and calm,
With her steel knotted whip beneath her arm.

Eugene Delacroix’s “Liberty Leading the People” (“La Liberté guidant le peuple”)

The Worst Treason was published in 1853, as part of a literary attack on Louis Napoleon. Liberty Leading the People was painted to commemorate the July Revolution of 1830. Neither have anything directly to do with July 14, 1789, except they’re French, and relate to the concept of Freedom.

On rejections

I probably should wait before I blog about this, but a rejection I just got from an editor bugs me.  To summarize, it said the short story took too long to develop, and it was based on something old and worn.  I’m not arguing with the editor — I like to think I gave the old and worn idea a new breath of life, but I respect a differing mind.

What gets me is the email rejection has no suggestion whatsoever that the editor thought anything about the submission was good.  I accept he thought it was crap, but he took 3 months to tell me it was crap, and the guidelines say he tries to respond in 1 month, and not to get antsy until at least 2 months.  And being the ever patient writer I still hadn’t said anything.  And his rejection didn’t apologize for any delay suggesting he had a backlog and had just gotten around to reading it.  So considering this, I have to assume he sat on the piece debating what to do with it.  Which means he had to have liked it a little.  So why didn’t he say so?
I don’t believe editors should follow Thumper’s mother’s advice.  Editors need to tell the truth.  But if there is something nice to say, editors should say it.  Only saying what one finds lacking in a piece, leaves the writer feeling depressed.

TV Meme

found the meme on Greg‘s lj

“Bold all of the following TV shows which you’ve ever seen three or more episodes of in your lifetime. Italicize a show if you’re positive you’ve seen every episode of it. Strikeout a show if you’ve never seen a single episode. If you want, add up to three additional shows (keeping the list in alphabetical order).”

7th Heaven
Absolutely Fabulous
Adventures of the Gummi Bears
Aeon Flux
Alfred Hitchcock Presents
All Creatures Great And Small
America’s Next Top Model
American Chopper
Arrested Development
At Home with the Braithwaites

Babylon 5
Babylon 5: Crusade
Bad Girls
Battlestar Galactica (the old one)

Battlestar Galactica (the new one)
Beauty & The Beast
Beavis & Butthead
Benny Hill
Beverly Hills 90210
Bionic Woman
Birds of Prey
Bosom Buddies
Boy Meets World
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Bug Juice
Chappelle’s Show

Charles in Charge
Charlie’s Angels

Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers
Cold Case
Commander in Chief
Cowboy Bebop
Crossing Jordan
CSI: Miami
Curb Your Enthusiasm
Danny Phantom
Dark Angel
Dark Skies
Darkwing Duck
DaVinci’s Inquest
Dawson’s Creek
Dead Like Me
Degrassi Junior High
Degrassi High
Degrassi: The Next Generation
Desperate Housewives
Dharma & Greg
Diagnosis Murder
Different Strokes
Doctor Who (the latest season on US/CA)
Due South
Early Edition
Everybody Loves Raymond
Facts of Life
Family Guy
Family Ties
Father Ted
Fawlty Towers
Firefly (including the unaired episodes from the DVD, of course)
Forever Knight

Get Smart
Gilligan’s Island
Gilmore Girls
Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C.
Good Eats
Green Wing
Grey’s Anatomy
Growing Pains
Hannah Montana
Happy Days
Hogan’s Heroes
Home Improvement
Homicide: Life on the Street
I Dream of Jeannie
I Love Lucy

Invader Zim
Hell’s Kitchen
Kingdom Hospital
Kindred: The Embraced
Law and Order
Law and Order: SVU
Law and Order: Criminal Intent
Law and Order: Trial By Jury
Life Goes On
Life On Mars
Little House on the Prairie
Lizzie McGuire
Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman
Lost in Space
Love, American Style
Mad About You
Malcolm in the Middle
Married… With Children
Melrose Place
Miami Vice
Mission: Impossible
Mork & Mindy
Muppets Tonight
Murder She Wrote
Murder in Suburbia
My Three Sons
My Two Dads
Now & Again
Once & Again
One Tree Hill
Penn & Teller’s BULLSHIT
Perry Mason
Poltergeist the Legacy
Power Rangers
Prison Break
Project Runway
Quantum Leap
Queer As Folk (US)
Queer as Folk (British)
Quincy ME
Red Dwarf

Remingon Steele
Rescue Me
Road Rules
Sailor Moon
Saved by the Bell
Scrap Heap Challenge
Scarecrow & Mrs. King
Scooby-Doo, Where Are You?
Seaquest DSV
Sex and the City
Silent Witness
Silk Stalkings
Six Feet Under
So Weird
South of Nowhere
South Park
Spongebob Squarepants
Star Trek
Star Trek: The Animated Series
Star Trek: The Next Generation
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (I think I missed a few)
Star Trek: Voyager
Star Trek: Enterprise (I think I missed a few)
Stargate Atlantis
Stargate SG-1
Sugar Rush

Teen Titans
That 70’s Show
That’s So Raven
The 4400
The Addams Family
The Andy Griffith Show
The A-Team
The Avengers

The Beverly Hillbillies
The Brady Bunch
The Commander (UK)
The Cosby Show
The Daily Show
The Dead Zone
The Division (one episode which my cousin was in)
The Flintstones
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
The Golden Girls
The Goodies
The Honeymooners
The Jeffersons
The Jetsons
The L Word
The Love Boat
The Monkees
The Munsters
The Muppet Show
The O.C.
The Office (UK)
The Office (US)
The Outer Limits
The Pretender
The Real World
The Rose of Versailles
The Sentinel
The Shield
The Simpsons
The Six Million Dollar Man
The Sopranos

The Suite Life of Zack and Cody
The Twilight Zone
The Waltons
The West Wing
The Wire
The Wire in the Blood
The Wonder Years
The X-Files
The Young Ones
The Young Person’s Guide to Becoming A Rock Star
Third Watch

Three’s Company
Top Gear
Twin Peaks
Veronica Mars

Whose Line is it Anyway? (UK and US)
Will and Grace

Without A Trace
Xena: Warrior Princess

Adventure Outdoors

Vot a Veekend!

First of all…the Texan, and the vegetarian librarian cancelled at the last minute. They missed a lot of fun.

We camped at…and rented a raft from – Adventure Outdoors. It’s a nice campsite. There’s a side with electrictiy, and a side without. There were enough members of the group with fond memories of boy scouts or girl scouts that it was decided we didn’t need no electrictity. And, for the most part, we didn’t. We had enough people with enough knowledge to keep the campfire going, and actually prepare some better than edible meals.

We took the 9 mile float trip that was supposed to be a 7-hour float. We reached the end in 9 hours, but we did stop for lunch. The biggest problem was that the water level was a little low and there were several spots we had to get out of the raft and push it. That was annoying. (And confused the two dogs that were along for the ride.) Several of us were very tired at the end of 9 hours.

Guy with a mini drank way too much beer, and got sunburned…a very bad combination. We forced him to rehydrate himself with some water Saturday night.

Let’s see…what else have I forgotten? Oh, yes. We were in two rafts, and we decided to link the two rafts together with a rope. In some cases, this was helpful, as if one raft got into trouble, the other raft with a little properly placed momentum could get it out. However, in one particular instance, each raft was headed to the opposite side of a tree branch that ended up hitting the guy in the rear of one of the two rafts and sending him over(board) and under(raft). Guess who this lucky guy was?
Luckily, I know how to swim, I wasn’t knocked unconscious by the branch, and I kept my cool. Someone was about to jump in after me when I came up out of the water. Once I got back into the boat someone mentioned there were a few things missing from my head. Considering the things which could have been missing (eye, nose) the fact that it was a bandanna on loan from from a fellow camper, and my eyeglasses, could be considered a relief.

Several went back to the scene of the accident and looked for both. But it was a lost cause. (I stayed on the raft during this time, because as much as I would have liked to have joined the search, without my glasses, I wasn’t much help.)

As I told one person…I sometimes get jokes from people who tell me that I wear my glasses too long past the point of fashion. I basically don’t get new glasses until G-d tells me it’s time to get new glasses. G-d has come up with some creative methods in the past — this probably tops them all.

That was Saturday. On Sunday about noon I called LensCrafters at the Galleria and checked to see if they had my prescription on file. Of course they did. They were the ones from whom I last got my glasses. However, that was 6 years ago, and they weren’t willing to make me glasses from that prescription (understandable) so I had to schedule an eye exam. I scheduled it for their last possible appointment of the day, and with someone else driving, a few of the remaining Adventurers (Guy with a Mini, Toy Lady, and their two dogs went home…neither of the two humans in any condition to go winetasting, both suffering from sunburns) spent a couple hours at one of our favorite vineyards, Peaceful Bend. I had a hard time ‘seeing’ the legs on the wine as I ‘swirled’ it. However, the ‘smelling’ ‘sipping’ and ‘savoring” went fine. I brought home a bottle of their Late Harvest Chardonel dessert wine.
The Piano Teacher drove me to the Galleria, and spent some time doing some shopping of her own. The customer service at Lenscrafters was excellent. Due to scheduling my eye exam for a late appointment, selecting my new frames was pushed up close to the normal closing time for those who make the eyeglasses. (They promise eyeglasses in an hour. The store closes at 6, so when 5 approaches, the workers get a little anxious and naturally hope they don’t get a last second order. I was that order, and they had already shut the machines down, but they started them back up, as I explained to them…I need my glasses.)

This Weekend

The piano teacher, Mr. Star Wars, the mad photographer, the vegetarian librarian, the toy lady, the guy with a mini, the kochlefl, the Texan, and myself will be rafting, camping, and imbibing alcohol this weekend.  (I’ve mentioned the Kochlefl previously, but I’ve translated his name into a new language…if you know German or Yiddish you probably are familiar with the word.  It literally means soup ladle.  I don’t believe I’ve mentioned The Texan before.  He was born there, and his politics and ego match.  He will not feel insulted by that comment.)  In addition to the 9 of us, there will be two dogs (one the friend of Toy Lady, and the other the friend of the guy with a mini.  The dogs spend a lot of time together, actually.)

It’s been awhile since I rafted.  The last time was about 10 years ago, at my brother’s bachelor party.  I’m estimating….I know my niece is turning 8 in October.  (I really should look this up, for if my brother and sister-in-law’s 10-year anniversary is approaching, I should consider doing something,.  If it was last year, hopefully I did do something.  It’s completely possible I did, and have forgotten.)  That raft trip was in West Virginia and we actually needed a professional on the raft as we went through some level 4/5 rapids.  (It’s a 5 point scale)  There were other events that weekend which I remember even better than the rafting.

I haven’t found any ranking of the Meramec, but my suspicion is that there won’t be any level 3 rapids.  Which is good, since the rafts will have coolers and dogs on them.  Since there will be a different ratio on this raft trip as there was 10 years ago, I suspect those other events I remember so well will not be involved.  But since the ratio will be different, other events are possible, especially with enough drinking involved.  

Independence Day

On July 4, 2005, I posted a poem of mine, Loyal. Along with a few quotes by the likes of Rudyard Kipling, Victor Hugo, and Thomas Jefferson.

On July 4, 2002, I posted the lyrics to My Country Tis of Thee.

I think that just about covers it. Though I feel I should add something, so I will post a few pictures from the latest issue of the comic book Fantastic Four. In the Marvel Universe the big issue of the moment is a superhero registration law. It’s been done before, but it’s being done again. Some heroes are supporting it, some aren’t.

Ben Grimm (The Thing) also tries to quell some rioters on his hometown Yancey Street, and tells them that even though he too is against the registration law, he isn’t one to fight the government. There are lots of laws he doesn’t like.  This is the response he gets: