Wednesday, October 31, 2012


Good times! Good times!

Not appropriately dire enough. It is actually the day before NaNoWriMo commences. So be it. I feel as though I were in a confessional. “Father Angus, it has been 15 days since my last confession, blah, blah, blah.” Due to the fact that I have not written an organized thought since our last #ROW80 check in, unless we included SDBN (Now With Added Moms) which can be viewed here. Although, this may count as more of a PSA and less as an organized thought Maybe this qualifies more appropriately as an A. A.  meeting, sort of...

“Hello, my name is Viola and I am an alcoholic. It’s been 2 years and 4 months since my last drink. I’m slipping into that trend of taking other people’s inventory and forgetting to take my own. Y’know, Step 10? I’ve been down the road where I made amends to everyone and felt better. Steps 8 and 9 and if I left anybody out, I’m really sorry, but I forget a lot…

“About step 7? I’m humble about things, well shortcomings, not about violas and playing them. But yeah, other stuff, yes, I need to be humble about my short and getting ever shorter temper, although this praying to whomever, or whatever, or timeever, whom is out there and hears all this nonsense, you’re doing a Hell of a job because I have patience upon patience when I need it for poor JC. He’s had that vicious, stealthy infection from a few months back. If our new kitty hadn’t just nicked him he’d probably have been very sick indeed. I know I’m digressing. But could you ease up on JC? He’s had a rotten, rotten life. He never knew his real dad. His step father was horrible to him. It was William Faulkner in East Texas.

“He had 4 bad marriages; his last wife was so evil and she and her sons wanted everything he had worked for. He’s a good man. Please, please stop tormenting him. It’s enough he has to put up with my ass.

One grizzled bat, “Betty,” with a really bad, bee-hive bun, interjects, with the voice of a chainsaw, puffing furiously on her Tiparillo and hacking, “Viola, are you going somewhere with this? We’ve heard from you before. You come in here, talking about how you were homeless and how you were in the hospital and in physical therapy for 6 months and you were put there by the brainless twit you lived with after 5 failed marriages. The brainless twit who had an anger management problem. How after 7 years of living with this dolt you managed to get yourself evicted and hospitalized, blah, blah, blah….” Hack, hack, argh.

Her lantern jaw is working furiously, underbite with 3 yellowed teeth, teetering. “And so, now, you’re with another loser. Someone who isn’t going to let you be you.” Air quotes. Now, it’s writing.”

I finally hold up my hand. “Who are you to be taking my inventory?” Betty says, “Isn’t that what you said you do?” I nod my head, “Yes, I did. But you didn’t let me finish, Betty. I hadn’t gotten to the part yet, where I mention that we go through that part where it’s ‘one day at a time?’ Sometimes, it’s 4 hours at a time, or 1 hour. Or maybe 4 minutes.” I look down. My hands are starting to shake, from the stress. I can feel the tremors in my thighs and upper arms. They will pass. I say, “I go back and continually question myself.” I look in her eyes. “You do too, we all do. That’s why we come here. We take the bus, we stumble down here in our walkers, use our canes. But we come. Because we don’t want to do what got us all screwed up anymore.”  Betty stands up, and holds out her arms. I walk over and punch her in the nose. 

Back in the mid-80s, I did a stint in A. A. for 1 year and didn’t drink at all for 14 years. During my 3rd marriage to the estimable ‘Crapweasel’ (Bill) he told me he didn’t think I was an alcoholic. He also told me he didn’t believe in God or any form of a higher power. I call ‘bullshit’ on both counts. The exchange with Betty is made up of whole cloth, but I have either been in exchanges like this, or witnessed them around the table. A. A. is a wonderful organization. For someone who is sincere and earnest and just starting out it’s great. So, on to #ROW80 and NaNoWriMo tomorrow. Excited, I just hope we can all stay out of the hospital and the mental ward.

Sunday, October 28, 2012


What a pair; Ma looks drunk and I look stoned; yes, I'm wearing opera gloves... on the viola.

It has been some time since I’ve written just a pure rant-style post, and now that I’ve finished it, this isn’t it. So, the rest of this paragraph is pure bullshit. Except for the last 11 sentences. The primary reason, is that it is harder for me to just punch it right up into rant-gear. My typing speed has slowed somewhat and I no longer type at the speed of thought. That sucks. I also use the backspace key far more often and that is a huge fucking pain in the ass, because my fingers are getting stiffer. I make more typos because my brain is in scramble mode; an example of this: “stiffer” was originally “stigger.” Time to turn on auto-correct, I guess. I’ve never used, it. Handy-capable! Shit; Carlin was right. Or This, which I can’t add to auto-correct; imagine the chaos. Maybe I’ll do it anyway; I’m getting my hate on.

This past few months have been spell-bindingly (Binders full?) full of hate. It has run the gamut from A to Z and to imaginary letters, rather like math where you plot imaginary numbers; -i , -25, and so on. But, through our political discourse, we have discovered that in the 21st century, it is still open season on people who are “other.” Yes, you can just bully the living daylights out of anyone who is “different,” than you and get away with you. In most cases, no one knows, because the bully-ee, goes off and quietly wonders what their particular lack is and then, has a nervous breakdown. Some end up in mental institutions, some in therapy. Hopefully, these folks get the help they need.

What victims of bullying REALLY need is affirmation that the bully-er is a giant suckhole of mean, cruelty and bag of dicks, and the victims also need to know that they are NOT alone. There is someone who will hold their hand and talk to them and assure them, that yes, they are fine, decent people. They are people who enrich the souls around them and who really mean something to the people in their lives, even if those people are a half a world away.

People are bullied for all sorts of reasons. If you haven’t seen this video by the anchor woman Jennifer Livingston, you should. She handles a very cruel email from a viewer beautifully and answers some questions that have been raised regarding how cruel bullying is and what can be done. You can view it here.  

Bullying has been around for a long time. When I was a kid, I was fresh meat for bullies. I have red hair. I wore glasses and carried a violin case. Bully trifecta, right there. I wore my hair in braids. Every day, I came home from school, glasses scratched or busted, ribbons yanked out of my hair, bloody nose and bloody knuckles. I usually had skinned knees and was filthy from rolling around in the playground.

My father, ever the corny historian, must have been reading some medieval text on monarchies, or something. He said to me once, after some spectacular battle I’d had, “I dub thee, Red Knees Wallace,” an appellation I wore for years. One teacher, in exasperation, yanked one of the ribbons from my hair, when I punched a boy in the nose. She yelled in my face, “Your mother put this in your hair, so you’d act like a girl! Be one!” I was probably thinking, “Bullshit, this is camouflage.” I punched her in the nose.

I can’t remember her name; she was my 3rd grade teacher; she had one of those blond complicated braided bee-hive hairdos that looked so fake and it looked the same every day, so you knew it was fake. She wore tight, 2-piece suits, had long painted, red fingernails and lipstick to match. Me, and another kid drove her crazy. His name was Dale Binix. The only reason I remember this cat’s name is because my father thought “Binix” was the funniest thing he ever heard. Him thinking that was the funniest thing he ever heard, is the funniest thing I ever heard. The Wallaces are truly batshit insane.

Our stupid teacher had given us an assignment that must have been genuinely asinine, because he wrote his answers in Sanskrit or Elvish or something and I signed mine “Louise.” No first or last name. I guess I was running undercover that day. Up until then, I had forgotten the second part of my name. Not a middle name, per se. I’m MaryLouise. A couple of other kids in the class performed some kind of Civil Disobedience, but I forget what they did, in the hurly-burly of our transgressions, Binix and I. I think she put us in equivalent of the schoolyard square stocks and let the 4th-graders throw rocks at us. Yes, I went to school in the Middle Ages.

Anyway, Teach didn’t appreciate Sanskrit Boy and she didn’t like my undercover gig. I hated her, and pretty much let her know in any way possible. When I hit her, She backed off. She did not tell my parents, because, when I would go home after the school boxing matches, we all put on this dumb show: Ma would patch me up and say loudly, “Mary, I’ve told you a million times, not to fight. Oh, and also, not to exaggerate.” Then she’d whisper, “Did you start it?” I’d shake my head. “No, Ma.” It’s the one time I wouldn’t lie to her. “Good. Did you win?” “Yeah, Ma, I did.” She congratulated me. Shook my hand. Then, we went through the same routine with Daddy. My parents taught me that if provoked, you fought back, and you made them pay. If they came back for the refresher course, it was worse. 

So, maybe I’m well suited to be an advocate in the here and now for people who are bullied. It’s stunning to me that people bully. Part of me was a sad thing for a long time. The same person who taught me to fight if I was attacked verbally or physically, was herself verbally abused as a girl and in turn, heaped tons of scorn and capricious cruelties on me. She thought I needed protecting and tried to guide me in a way I did not want to go. I knew what I wanted, but it made for a very bitter household for a number of years. I understand that know and the fact that we were so very close when she died we can both count as a triumph. She never really understood me until the last years of her life and when she did, then she knew who I was and loved me for me; not as some construct, she had made in her head. The sad fact is, my father always knew who I was and love me for me. 

She sensed it and was jealous and thought I loved him better. I didn't. I just knew in my child-like way, that he understood me and she didn't.  I can truly look past all that and thank God I could when she was alive. She so deserved to be loved for herself. Gallant and brave, caring and passionate; she lost that jealousy and I saw person I always knew my mother to be. Mommy issues? No, not at all. She was just the best.

Thursday, October 25, 2012


I wasn’t sure I’d be able to write this today, I feel so strongly and am so lost, sad and very bitter about this. The best way for me to do this is to tell the story quickly, chronologically, surgically and get the hell off the stage and let others tell it.

Back in 2007, when I was playing Runescape pretty obsessively and was a very mediocre player, I met a very, very fine player and a fine man, when I joined the Clan SpiritZ. A player named ‘Sal.’ SalSomething, he probably remembers what the rest of his player name was; I don’t. Anyway, I knew who he was, through the RS grapevine. He was pretty much like Zezima, a legend. Actually, as I later found out, he’s better than Zezima, in my humble opinion. My respect for Sal has only grown as I’ve gotten to know him over the years. Sal rocks, as a player, a computer whiz and an all-around great person. Shit, let the waterworks begin.

Time goes along, he and I are on SpiritZ Council together. It’s like I have diarrhea of the mouth, he says 3 words, where I say 8 pages of nothing, to say when one of the other players comes up with stupid ideas. He gets it done; he says, "no", I say "blah," repeat 8k times. We’re perfect that way together. We both keep in touch through my losing it, taking abuse from a domestic partner, and being hospitalized, homeless, getting an apartment and on SSDI. The whole thing, Sal’s right there, saying his 3 words, but being encouraging to me, as I blabber all of this to him. He listens to me and says 3 words at the right time. 

I have my famous melt-down (well, to me) when I stay up all of February and forget and am hospitalized most of March. I meet Andi-Roo and read her “Depressionis a Lying Bitch, Wouldn't' You Say?” and I understood clearly for the first time why I went through all of that shit, and for the very first time in my 56 years, my life was drilled down to that crystal-sharp diamond point. It matters. Cruelty and uncaring-ness, attitude. It ALL matters. How we treat one another, how we treat ourselves. This is life. We should care about it passionately. But not to the point that we bruise, bully, maim and injure others.

My psychiatrist understood immediately that I wasn’t depressed-depressed from all of the ‘homeless’ stigma people threw at me. It was deeper than that. We started medication for bipolar. We’d have to change meds, later to Topamax. I went on Runescape and ran into Sal. I had been in a “manic” phase, but I was like that most of the time anyway. I said, “Hey, Sal Hi, blabber blabber blabber blabber blabber blabber blabber blabber blabber blabber. I’m bipolar.”

Sal said, “So am I.” I said, “I didn’t know.”

He said, “I may have mentioned it. I ” I know now he did. Because the week before last, the day after I read and watched the video that George Takei urged everyone on FB to watch the special message he recorded for the Presidential election, which I did, although I’ve already voted for President Obama, and you can see here Sal popped up and responded to a comment I’d made to Zeitgest2012, in a most “unSal-like” way. We talked back and forth for a few moments. I just knew something was not right with my friend. What we talked about is precious to me, it’s ours, but what I learned is a very, very close friend of his died by his own hand.

A very dear and talented man that he met in the asylum, named Rasmus Rasmussen killed himself. Sal and Rasmus Rasmussen met in the asylum during their respective stays there for depression. That is what they are called in Europe, “asylums.” We don’t call them asylums here. We call them hospitals, or state hospitals. I’ve gotten to stay there. I’ve had other friends go to asylums and state hospitals and hospitals. I just am so, so very glad that Sal came to talk to me. This is why I always reach out. A fine, and beautiful person is dead because he was bullied and because he felt alone and because he was silent. Frankly, I think we should call them asylums, here, too. Because, my dears, that shit is rough, asylum-rough. We're sick, but it's a sickness that you have to be tough to weather and we just simply cannot do it alone.

This is just beyond the pale. Rasmus Rasmussen produced music and wrote music. His music soared with birds. He wrote of eagles, crows. His spirit was expansive. His was so vast, the earth couldn’t contain him. His was so generous, he gave kindly and expansively and helped others to share their music. He worked with different genres, lots of black/doom metal, but I’ve heard tons of life-affirming music that he has written and produced. My muse and protector, Beethoven; were he alive, he'd be into all of this, metal, rock and roll, all of it. I listened to Pink Floyd's "The Delicate Sound of Thunder." Younger friends don't believe me when I tell them that I like Rammstein. 

I can’t really do justice with words when a tragedy of this magnitude occurs, and make no mistake it is a magnificent tragedy, in the most ironic sense of the term. That a man, from Iceland, is bullied to the point of extreme mental illness in a European country that should be a guiding light for civilized behavior is ironic. I would expect that of the United States. That the same man; ferociously gifted and loved by many, should feel so bereft and loathed and alone and in agony that killing himself is the only way to end that terror and pain is so pointedly, catastrophically wrong, that it’s really a crime against nature, and that’s ironic, isn’t it?

The only thing of any good, any worth and I think it’s damn fine, is that someone reached out. Someone went to someone. Sal. He came to me, to tell me about his friend. You see, none of us with mental illness are weak, or need to pull ourselves up by our bootstraps. We’re stronger than the hottest cauldrons of Hell. We burn hotter than the Sun. But eventually? We’ll break, if we don’t have a lifeline, or just a voice out there in the wilderness. So, for Rasmus Rasmussen, his spirit out there now, up there flying with the eagles, swifts and crows he so very obviously loved, you haven’t died in vain. You’re remembered. I may not have know you then, but I do now, Rasmus Rasmussen. Thank you.

There is a beautiful tribute from some fellow collaborators and musicians at the wonderful blog, "Let Me Introduce You" This post is written in English, but it seems the "home" language, if there is such a thing anymore is Italian.

So, Sal, this is for you, especially, and all of our friends, for everyone, really. "Nessun Dorme" by Giaccamo Puccini, from the opera, "Turandot."  This was the last opera Puccini wrote and it was unfinished when he died. I've played this opera several times and when the tenor sings this aria, I always cried. I'm a real professional. Musicians don't go into music to make money. So, let me get off the stage, and let me let love take over. This is love for everyone. We're all the same.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

#ROW80 POST 17 Wednesday Check in - Tigers and Giants

Well, I wrote what I thought were 2 really killer posts, then I got to today and was supposed to write about goals. The goal fairy, alas, did not materialize, AGAIN. At least in one category, pulling together material for my self-published “biography.” That one’s just laying there like the proverbial lead balloon. NaNoWriMo is starting to germinate, already, though. Cool.

On the physical front, I’ve gained 5 lbs. up from 100 to 105. I must keep stuffing anything that doesn’t walk or isn’t all maggoty, down my craw. Still doing the weird sensory thing, and night terrors, odd perceptions, sleep-talking; a regular 3-ring circus. At least, I haven’t punched myself in the beezer. JC told me he had a dream once, where he ran into a tree. He woke up very abruptly, as he’d punched himself in the nose. 

There was that time I dreamed that JC took a stick and pushed my big toe straight up and it hit me under the chin. I woke up, hollering “Damn it! Don’t do that!” He’d skipped off out of the house and was all the way down at the Sweetbay market, so he didn’t hear me. Boy, does he move fast for a 65-year old man! On that note, I signed up for the National Parkinson's Foundation Webinar, so I have more information as ammo for that neuro Dr. If that doesn't work, I will tie his shoelaces together and steal all those rubber gloves. Hee.

Night terrors, or "sundowning" as it's now called. Whatever the term; it's dismaying. I always loved the night. I was a creature of it. My blue eyes worked better at night and it's certainly better for my skin. But lately I don’t. I’ve been fighting sleep and am back up to staying up to 4 am. I had started going to bed around 10 or 11 pm, but as my “PD or non-PD” symptoms have worsened, I hate the night, but perversely, I won’t sleep. I’m up until 4 am, all anxiety and rage. I have medicine to counteract all of those things, and will take it, and then, fight the sleep. This is stupid and dangerous; I fall asleep in my chair. 

JC says he woke up and I was talking to “Angel” the vampire with a soul, on my computer monitor and was dead asleep. Wearing headphones. JC told me to go to bed; I took off my headphones and went to bed. Gah! New plan. Take the stuff for anxiety, then take the sleep stuff when I lay down. And LAY DOWN, for God’s sake at a decent hour, not 12 days later. That’s what got my happy ass committed last time.

Anyway, it’s Viola v. Viola. Sorta. My FB friend, Viola Weinberg Spencer writes poetry, which you can read here. She is a huge San Francisco Giants fan, and she lives in Northern California. Being ViolaFury, and from Detroit, we’re both excited Violas! Viola is an elegant and wonderful lady. She’s classy and everything I am not. I love her to death. Imagine my surprise and delight to discover that she is a Giants fan and adores baseball.

I also have a Runescape friend named Steve. In game, he’s SergioRomeo. Steve has been a very committed GAINTS fan since I’ve known him, for over 5 years. He’s a GAINTS fan. We’re all GAINTS fans in our Clan. The reason we’re so, is because our Clan founder was dyslexic or couldn’t type and he said “GO GAINTS!” one year. The CC exploded, with lots of disrespectful: “way to go, it’s G-I-A-N-T-S, JZ! Ha Ha”… “Jeeze, my dog could type better than that.”

The ribbing was tame because 1) JZ, our founder, though young, was respected and very dignified and 2) there was a censor, and there was no swearing or anything sexual allowed, because 10 year olds might be offended. The fact that you were supposed to be at least 13 to play was lost on the Gower brothers (creators of RS) but hey, that’s RS.

Whoever wins the World Series is okay with me. In the Spirit of Competition, if I want to douse this in the fabled Gabe Zaldivar of b/r lame-sauce, I could say “Go Tigers.” How about “Go Giants.” I really don’t care. A repeat for the Giants is good. The 1984 Tigers are legendary. Jim Leland, if he wins with the Tigers, will have repeated with the Tigers what Sparky Anderson did with the Tigers in 1984, by winning a World Series Title in both the NL and AL. That’s synchronicity, right there. That’s cool. My late father was a huge Giants fan, as are my dear friends. It’s all good. This is heaven; some competitor I am.

2012 SF Giants Clinch the NLC Pennant, beating the SL Cardinals. 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012


Apologies to “Star Trek,” the Original series for stealing a season three title. This was a Very Special Episode of Space Racism is Bad and falls under the heading of it’s so bad, it’s good. Thanks to the A.V. Club for reminding me how much I thought it was so important when I was 12.

Okay, during tonight's debate, I had one of my apoplexies brought on by laughter. We were reading the Twitter feed hashtag #fakedebate, mostly for @chuckwendig, Check out his website, terribleminds. Chuck is a terrific writer and funny as hell. I can spend hours and hours wandering around there. I've learned lots, but mostly just laughed. You can kind of tell I haven't really applied too much of his wonderful advice. Maybe NaNo will change that. 

Anyway, yes, "Let That Be Your Last Battlefield." A few things happened. First, from the Rhomboid, we got the something something something garble about some kind of von Clausewitzian philosophy about diplomacy by any means blabberian thing from Romney alá bayonets and horses and marches to the sea via Georgia or Iran or Syria or Mars.

Romney: "We used to have reed vessels, but we have less of them now, less of them at any time, since 1349. We have fewer planes now, than at any time since 1947.” Or maybe it was the Civil War. Yeah, the Civil War Airplane Collection, now at the Smithsonian. I can dig that.

Me, thinking “I know that’s correct, because that’s when the Army-Air Force dropped the Army-hyphen.”  I know that we also have 

Romney: “Bargle Army, blabber less than during the Punic Wars blah blah. Siege engines, Greek fire… Roman galleys! Triremes!”

I’m thinking… Frankly, I'd tuned out...  When Mr. Obama started to talk, I perked up. The President unloaded with this, and I'm giving you MY patented confuse-a-what impression:

President Obama: " ‘We also have fewer horses and bayonets’. We have these floaty things with big platforms on top. Planes land on them. We also have these ships… (pauses for effect, in his patented way) they go underwater.”

The President gestured with his hands, mimicking something going underwater, much like, oh, I don’t know… a submarine?

I almost fell out of my chair. Then, Twitter exploded. It always does; with this:

What passed for political discourse on Twitter during the debate. Oh, look! There's @YumaBev She just had DBS!

Fuckwhistle? So, of course, I laughed even harder. I'm going to use "fuckwhistle" every chance I get. Fuckwhistle, fuckwhistle fuckwhistle. Okay, enough. I don't want to upset my Dads and Moms. My “PD or not-PD” has been very bad of late. It didn’t help that at the first of the month, all of my hopes were shattered by the specialists I was depending on to help me manage my symptoms. So, I can laugh myself into apoplexy pretty easily; it’s just that much more exciting! And it was fucking hysteria. I’m sorry, that shit right there was a riot. (All of it moves too fast for me to reply, but I sure can laugh.)

So, we moved on. JC and his commentary weren’t helping. Romney continued to dig himself into a giant hole. I think he was aiming for  the other side of the planet. By the time we got to I WAS BORN IN DETROIT, MEXICO, JC had about worn himself out guffawing. I looked at him, shrugged my shoulders and on we went with gabbagool and propaganda. I never know what in the hell I’m hearing anyway. Everything’s at high alert because of my blindness, coupled with my DEFCON5 brain and hooting ears, so I try to pretend that everything’s normal. When I think no one’s looking, I run back and fact-check everything. So, I didn’t realize that we had a huge boner here, until just NOW. Oops.

I do not understand his focus on Russia. Oh wait, yes I do. He, under the auspices of Bain Capital, either helped or encouraged Investment Cartels to underwrite and fund loans to Russia and then sell the paper before the true worth could be realized. I don’t understand it completely; I’m not an economist. I took 2 years of Russian in college, and because I studied it during the USSR and was considered a closed economy, I took a  course in Russian economics; one of my electives.

What Bain Capital did was during a time of great peril for a fledgling democracy, and damn, if a fucking bunch of Capitalists didn’t screw it up. The Commies may have been right. I found a bit of insight into why Russia has the President it does now, when I read a couple of articles. The one was about 2 Russian billionaires, one with ties to Putin. The other is by David Stockman, called “David Stockman v. Bain Capital.” Lots of dots are connected for me, just with those 2 articles and what little rudimentary knowledge I bring to it from university.

Lots of dots are connected for me, just with those 2 articles. Then, after Mittens said what he said? Kept jabbering like a cold warrior about Russia... He’s dangerous. I mean, really dangerous. I also, am no fan of the Israeli PM. Bibi was never moderate. He hates the Arab world with an Old Testament kind of Zionist hatred. He is scary, and I’m not too sure the Knesset is wild about him, either.

Bob Schieffer jumps in… and asks Mitt: “If your good friend Bibi called and said he sent fighters to bomb Iran, what would you do?” I love how Bob Schieffer does this kind of thing; and does it well. He’s an excellent moderator and he’s no dummy.

Mitt proceeds to jabber and wander and hypothesize and say, “I’m not going there” in 50 Shades of Nothing. Then after Mittens meandered around, I blipped out and did the 1,000 yard stare and thought… “This asshole is dangerous. I mean, really really, dangerous. I also am no fan of the Israeli PM. Bibi was never moderate.” What I said to JC was, “Pink socks!” So, moving along out of Boreville. We get back to DETROIT, MEXICO.

Apparently, DETROIT, MEXICO is an INDUSTRY. It is going to be LIQUIDATED. Gosh, I didn’t realize you could annihilate an entire INDUSTRY! But oh wait! Mitt never said that! No, never, never never never never never! Never, so there. But he didn’t like it when President Junior Bush wrote a check and he told him not to. Shame. Shame. Shame. Shame. President Junior Bush wrote the fucking check, anyway. Garble garble, blah-di-blah. zzzzzzzz.

No, President Junior Bush. This isn't a check for the Detroit, Industry, which I am totally, totally, totally, totally against. This is a baby.

President Obama jumps in and says something that makes sense. They actually say some stuff about how this was all great and wonderful and the debates are all over and la-di-da-de-da-di-da. Jesus, I’m glad they’re over. I already voted, but the Mittster is horrid. Now, we have the election. Twitter will explode again. That’s the bright spot here, folksve the election. Twitter will explode again. That’s the bright spot here, folks!

Monday, October 22, 2012


Dr. Richard Strauss, Time Magazine, July 25, 1938 

The tone poem “Metamorphosen” was written in 1945 in honor and grief by Richard Strauss. The bombing of Munich during WW II and specifically the Munich Opera House in 1943, became the inspiration. “Metamorphosen,” a metamorphosis, is not the only war-inspired music ever written. Shostakovich wrote 3 symphonies, Leningrad 7th , Stalingrad 8th and the no-name 9th symphony. More on this one, later. It’s a juicy story.

I love history and music. My music history professor made me hate it. He was beyond crashing boredom, if he could make me hate 2 somethings balled into 1 something; I should have loved it twice as much, no? But I loathed it. Anyway, the story of the no-name 9th symphony by Shostakovich that was supposed to celebrate the Soviet win over the Nazis is dandy. As usual, I digress.

Anyway, “Metamorphosen” is a tone poem for orchestrated for 23 strings, specifically 23 SOLO strings: 10 violins, 5 violas, 5 cellos and 3 double basses. This tone poem, along with his “4 Last Songs” are of the more classical and elegiac of Strauss’s works, returning to his initial style of composing prior to WWI, and during the Austro-Hungarian Empire.

Anyway, the man lived a long time and saw lots of shit happen. Kinda like me, but I didn’t get threatened with Concentration Camps and hide my Jewish daughter-in-law and grandkids and then turn around and try to convince Stefan Zweig that Joseph Goebbels would be all cool with him writing librettos from London for his Operas, m’kay? This kind of behavior led the great conductor Arturo Toscanini to say, “To Strauss the Composer, I take off my hat. To Strauss the Man, I put it back on.” We have all had those days, but Toscanini should have kept his talkhole shut.

The sum of a person’s life can never be measured in anecdotes, or slices, but how in the hell can we ever qualify a person’s life? Should we even try? I have a bitch of a time with this. Just when I think I’m on a path of clarity, something comes along and tips my clarity wagon over and it goes all to hell and I scramble around. Or I do some ass thing, like make a judgment and guess what? I’m dead WRONG! Shit! How the hell did that happen? Gee, because… maybe, I’m not God.

My Daddy said that once to my Ma when she bitched at him for something that wasn’t just absolutely, fucking PERFECT. After she ran off at the piehole for about 5 minutes and he stood there looking at her with a twinkle in his eye and his easy grin, and said, “That’s because I’m not God.” Actually, I remembered it wrong, on purpose, because I want him to be THAT guy, but he wasn’t. He was kind of exasperated with her, and probably with me, because I laughed. Big deal. I laugh at everything. So did he. He pointed at the floor and said that, then stomped off to the garage for a slug of hooch. He was who he was. He loved her and he loved me in his human way. Nobody died or got beaten up. We laughed about it 5 minutes later. Slice of life.

He just wasn’t Richard fucking Strauss. Richard Strauss wasn’t "Strauss hanging out with Goebbels most of the time." He was home with his Frau Pauline and they were living in Stuttgart with their young son, who has been mayor of Stuttgart. Erwin Rommel’s kid has also been Mayor of Stuttgart. They're Schwabians, I think. Everyone loves Rommel. Rommel was a Wermacht Panzer General in WW II in North Africa, and not a real Nazi. Nobody likes Montgomery, because he was such a jerk. I have taken polls; "Rommel, or Montgomery?" "Not Monty, he's a jerk." So, it's not just me. He would show up and instant jerkery would ensue, just because he’s prissy and seemed a glory hound. Rommel is lion-brave and suave. 

All due respect. General Rommel had been awarded the equivalent of Knight's Cross and the Pour le Merité in WWI and was Hitler's favorite General. Eek! I just always thought of him as lion-hearted.

Fair and a gentleman too. And a comedian. He used to write to his wife, Lucy who was back in Stuttgart taking care of their only child, a son, Manfred. Rommel wrote his wife that Hitler told him that if he caught any soldiers who were Jews they were to be executed immediately. Rommel told Lucy that that directive fell behind his roll-top desk, "ho ho." That is from an actual letter to Lucy. He gave his staff no orders to ask the enemy prisoners’ faith and would not countenance any such questioning.

The point being, that we all aspire to this kind of honor. I fiddle around with some principle and do principle-checks and being the OCD sad thing  I am, it’s always *PRINCIPLE-CHECK TIME!* If it’s good, HAPPY BALLOONS, if not, my sad balloons are on the ground. Believe it, or not, I have *FILL-IN-THE-BLANK CHECKS* for about everything; appetite, mood, vision, nerve-ending, coordination, Asperger's Syndrome, bipolar; I'm a huge mess.  No wonder my goals are unmet!

Well, that formatting nightmare is over with. I just am trying to explain that we tend to try and put a quality on, or qualify things, people, lives  that are not easily qualified. I am especially bad at this. I’ve noticed, for instance, that as I’ve aged, I go back and listen to music I’ve played or known as a child. I experience it much differently. The same is true for reading. I think the difference is this. My brain organizes information differently now. I don’t want to make this sound clinical, because it’s not. I think it’s mostly spiritual.

As we seek and explore different paths of expression, we expand our belief systems. What may seem rigid, or one way becomes more porous and information flows both ways, I believe. Strauss was looked upon as a giant in the musical world. A German composer of what is known as the late 1st Viennese School. Gustav Mahler was his contemporary, but was of the 2nd Viennese School of composing; very different. But towards the end of Strauss’s life, WW II intervened, and Strauss became Reich Minister of Music under Joseph Goebbels. Thank God, Mahler was already dead.

He was really Strauss’s only equal as a composer and conductor. They had battled for supremacy on both sides of the Atlantic, and hated one another cordially. Mahler was Jewish. But truly, Strauss didn’t see any of this as a stumbling block. He was absolutely blind to the pernicious racism of the 3rd Reich. The horrible killing machines were in Eastern Europe; Bergen-Belsen, Theresienstadt, Sobibor, Auschwitz, among many others. In his defense, he could not know about the Wannsee Conference.  Herr Strauss was appointed Reich Music Minister and chose to keep the position so he might be better situated to help his Jewish relatives by marriage. Strauss knew he was a lion in the musical world. In the 20s, only Otto Klemperer, (Werner Klemperer-Colonel Klink's dad, and they had already fled to New York from Vienna in 1938, because they were, gasp! Jews) Bruno Walter, and a very few others were on the scene. 

Even a young Herbert von Karajan had yet to make the scene. Conductors then, were the Rock Stars and they did rock. The mystique and the tantrums were legendary. I started playing professionally, just as those old lions were leaving the stage, so to speak. I'm kind of sad, but with the rise of the musicians' unions, it's probably a good thing. Let me bring Richard back to center stage.

Herr Strauss then sparred with Goebbels for the next several years, not entirely successfully. You can read about the whole ordeal and the presumptuous way he was treated, here.. I don't think he was uncaring or unaware at all. I think Dr. Strauss used Goebbels to safeguard his family. He knew what he was doing. So, I choose to give him a pass. Besides, I’m not God; thanks, Daddy.

Sunday, October 21, 2012


Arresting title, isn’t it? I had my first experience with dystonia in my right hand the other day. Dystonia is just a fancy, schmancy word for “cramping” up. But if this is a cramp, it’s an odd one. It’s more like “ball o’ fingers.” Anyway, it went away and life went on. It always seems to do that.

I’ve decided that if I’m going to do this writing thing, I’m going to go whole hog. This dipping a toe in, and then waiting around to see if anyone notices, or goes into a lather, or the world melts, before dipping in another toe is ridiculous. I never really did that as a musician. I just went out and flopped gloriously for a while. I failed auditions right and left and worked at stupid jobs. I played half-assed gigs and started getting better gigs through word of mouth. Better playing and not being so green helped a lot, too. I ripped and snorted my way through the musical world and had a grand time.

After I went back to school for computer science, and was applying for jobs, I received job rejections, due to my lack of experience in the field. Rather than worry about that, I threw my c.v. and GPA and all that good shit out on the Florida jobs network, packed up my wondrous viola, "Wolf" and went on a tour with some half-assed orchestra for a few weeks to make money.

When I came home from the tour, I found out that I had a response from IBM. I interviewed; they hired. I went to work. For the next 3 years, I worked for them. Sometimes in-house; sometimes from the road. Sometimes from my own single-wide. I helped a guy rebuild his utterly hosed O/S2 system on his ThinkPad 360 once. I remember pacing back and forth in my living room, watching the clock; it was 6 am. He had an entire hard drive’s worth of contracts worth millions. I had a plane to catch to Atlanta at 11 AM. This was before anyone saved anything on remote servers. We still had the portable hard drives that smoked and caught fire. Guess what happened to his backed up data? So, we were able to fix his badly scrambled OS/2 system, which was good for our in-house support team. It helped that I knew the difference between system file and a text file. I also knew not to erase my hard drive which is more than I can say for MS Engineer Dave who did that very thing at Verizon. Oops.

Anyway, with all that in mind, instead of just dipping in one or two more toes, I’ve decided to put myself out there and go for it. If we’re going to write, let’s not pussy-foot around. Let’s just get it over with, kind of like when you decided you no longer wanted to be a virgin and any old dick would do. Well, not quite like that. Good thing my folks are not still alive to see that one. Who am I kidding? I really hate ambiguity, almost as much as I hate obfuscation. Yet, sometimes, as much as I try to clarify something, or cut to the chase, or get to the point, I end up with such a tortured phrase, that when I do go back and read it, it either a) means nothing, or b) means something else. The worst of all possible worlds is c) d) and e) ad infinitum, where you return to it, repeatedly and it means something entirely different in a Rashomon-like way, every time! Argh!

So, with no further ado, I have decided at the urging of the lovely and extremely talented Jade Kerrion the author of "Perfection Unleashed" to participate in NaNoWriMo. This NaNoWriMo is a National Writing challenge where one writes 50,000 words in a month, that will, hopefully, turn into a novel when I am all done polishing and waxing. How insane am I? Well, that is a question. Since I am the one who stayed up all of February of this year and was Baker Acted for most of March, which by the way, I remember almost none if, with the ironic exception of St Patrick’s Day, and the last part of March, I guess on that count, I’m fairly qualified. Judging by my past life’s history? I’d say it might be business as usual and a good move for me.

I’ve certainly made some progress in this whole write-o-sphere:

1. 2nd ROW80 (could be posting more) 
2. Editing essays from past (no, future, Duh) posts Homeless Chronicles in Tampa
3. Start planning out word count for NaNoWriMo
4. Bone up on my "Perfection Unleashed" portion of Jade's Blog Tour! Yes! For January 2, 2013. I am very excited about this. Further updates forthcoming for this portion. She along with, Jess Witkins' Happiness Project are also GoodReads friends, too. As is Amberr Meadows at Like a Bump on a Blog

On that note, does anything ever have a completely non-complicated acronym or just words anymore? This whole “PD non-PD” thing is driving me even more batshit. I may as well be typing with my elbows anyway. Dystonia = cramps. Dementia, Delirium = crazy (bipolar.) Tremors = shakes. Enough. Pictures say a thousand words. 

Smooth, even strokes when I move quickly. No tremors.

I slowed my movements down about 10X, you can see the "tremors."
They are not constant. This was done at about 6 pm.

Post 14 is going to be a very special post for a very, very dear friend in memory to another dear person who died recently. You will understand more why this hits close to home after the post. This will be in honor of someone close to me for someone close to my friend. I didn't know this young man, but that is not the point. I still grieve.

Thursday, October 18, 2012


Something has been out of kilter this week. Hell, it has been for the last several weeks. Me. Like a boxer in a 15-round heavyweight title fight, I’ve been struggling from the 12th round on. I’m fighting to keep my form and stay on my feet. For a couple of rounds, I’ve had trouble going back on the offensive. Defensive fighting sucks and I hate fighting peek-a-boo style; think Pee-Wee Whittaker. Gah. I’ve had enough of this; it sucks. This quick jab, cover, duck and dodge doesn’t cut it with me. I think I’ve found a way to re-assert my ring generalship and go back to offense, but damn if I didn’t go down and almost take a full 10-count.   

In case you couldn’t tell, I’ve been around boxing and boxers somewhat. I liken it to music, oddly enough. I relate most things to either music or math. Applying analogies from the familiar to something new are how I learn; we all do and the pronation (rotation in the wrist, elbow and shoulder) in boxing is what I recognized first in the similarity to music. It is one of the hardest things to learn, for bowing in string playing; and the most powerful tool you can develop in boxing. If you’re a natural puncher, so much the better. The second most familiar analogy I picked up on was the rhythmic style of each boxer (1, 2, 3 or 1 .. 2, 3, wait for it ... 4) and the third, and actually probably the one that sucks the most to train, endurance. I've run into many a musician at boxing matches. It goes like this:

Me: "Conductor So-and-so. What a shock! What are you doing here?"

Conductor So-and-so: "Me? I could say the same thing about you. What are you doing here?"

Me: (Cheesy grin) "I like boxing." No shit. I thought you liked knitting. So does Conductor So-and-so. Lots of musicians and other types you wouldn't associate with blood sports do. Conductor So-and-so and I hate each other a little less after that. It's practically in the contract that all section musicians detest their conductors. Joke. He's an awesome conductor. I wouldn't want to conduct a symphony full of me. I digress.

Right now, the Detroit Tigers are ahead of the New York Yankees 3-0 in the AL Playoffs. The San Francisco Giants have come from behind to win their series and they’re one step closer to the World Series. This got me reminiscing… back during the summer of 1984, I was pretty much just working, practicing and hanging out in Ann Arbor. The Detroit Tigers came out of the gate with a roar.  This was THE year, OUR year and everyone knew it. The Tigers had ended the previous season on a high note. The 1983 season had started typically shitty for the Tigers, 0-43 or something horrible.

In 1983 Sparky Anderson had had 88 fits in the dugout and Dave Rozema, Kirk Gibson and Jack Morris had been bailed out of jails and sewn up in hospitals more times than anyone cared to count. I was watching “Magnum P.I.” and when I wasn’t drooling over Tom Selleck and his ‘stache, I was out playing baseball. Ann Arbor is baseball city and I played the shit out of baseball. Yeah, I’ve heard all that. “Ooh, your hands! You’re a musician!”

I’d stand out there in Center Field with my shades and my Detroit Tigers hat with an orange “D,” not this and glove and attitude, all 5’4” and say “Fuck you, I can catch,” lose the ball in the sun, get hit in the face and break my nose. That happened twice. Once during a game. I’m tough. So, I had a coach one season who noticed that I was little and thought I was going to be part of the Whitaker-Trammell baseball city (you can look it up) wannabes and put me as short-stop, which I was pretty good at.

Anyway, Daddy is still out in California, bugging me about how he’s going to Spring Training at the Cactus League and following Nolan Ryan around and all of this cray-cray (see A-R theWorld4Realz here) and he’s calling me every other day to needle me, because the Tigers just signed 2 hotdogs from the SF Giants named, Enos Cabell and Larry Herndon. I’m already hating what I’m seeing. If I remember rightly, and God forbid I should Google this and louse up a funny story, these 2 were just horrifying. I was all like, “What in the Hell was Tom Monaghan (the owner) thinking? These guys suck!” Daddy’s like, “Ha ha, they just count their money. And Enos? He hits at everything! That bastard has never seen a pitch he doesn’t like. It could be 50 feet on the outside. Enos is going to go down swinging away at it!” Daddy goes on, “Larry will have a pocket full of gloves and stand out in Center Field and count his money, he won’t catch a thing. Hee hee. Ho ho.” Great. Thanks. I'm laughing, because, he's laughing. It's our way of bonding. 

He loved the Giants. He loved stupid English more. He used to get all kinds of hysterical over misprints in the newspaper. "Ha ha ha ha, The GAINTS. Ho ho ho, Tee hee hee." Far less than whatever warranted his delight, was whatever he was laughing at, if that makes any sense. Alas, I have inherited that in spades. The fact that I have "PD or, non-PD" just makes it so much worse. Emotional roller-coaster, they say? Nay, I say. Everything is perilously hilarious, to the point where I damn near lose consciousness, or cry me a river and die. Thanks. I laugh far more than I cry, but Jesus wept... or not.

Anyway, back to our tale of the "2 hotdogs from the SF Giants." It all comes to pass. I’m just livid. Spring training of 1984 is just horrid. This was supposed to be OUR year. God. I’m up in Ann Arbor watching this shit-fest on lazy afternoons drinking beer, staring at an empty Joker Marchant Stadium in Lakeland, Florida. Al Kaline and George Kell are trying there damnedest to put lipstick on this bulldog. I’m thinking they need to take it out and shoot it.

One afternoon in late March, I’m watching one of these games. Poor George; he’s fumbling around. He was no announcer. He certainly knew baseball and I learned tons about the game from him, he spit out this gem, “We’ll be right back. Be sure to tune in for the Andro-Media Strain this Saturday.”  M’kay. The umpires suck. They must have driven over to the School of the Blind and picked up a bunch of students from over there. After about the 12th blown call, a strike that was right up the middle the ump said was an inside ball, one of the 2 guys in the stands right behind the catcher, Lance Parrish hollered “Catcher, give the umpire your glasses.” The cameras were so close, you could see Lance grin. I loved the easiness of those spring training games. The slow somnolence of the rhythms of the innings. Nothing was hurried, no haste. It’s one of the things I love about life in the south.

Spring training is for a reason; a strange alchemy occurred during the spring training season of 1984 in the Detroit Tigers organization. The addition of Enos Cabell and Larry Herndon from the San Francisco Giants, among several other players from other organizations proved to be the key. But the addition of those 2 were the pivotal tipping point. Here’s why I say that.

One afternoon, late July, I was sitting on my couch, watching a rare day televised game. I had been back and forth, talking to my father ever since the season had started. The Giants were doing what the Giants had always done, which is, I can’t remember. Not much. The Tigers tore out of the gate, and I don’t think they were ever out of 1st place the entire season. They went 35-5 which was unprecedented. That’s still not why I say what I said. Here’s why I say that.

There’s a knock on my door, as I’m watching this game in late July. I have the front door open, just the screen door is closed. It’s my father. He’s flown in from Los Gatos to take me to a game. I’ve been to bunches of games that summer; “game-parties” have sprung up like sudden late-summer thunderstorms do in Michigan. I’m gleeful. I haven’t seen him in quite a while and I’ve missed him. He looks older, worn and tired. I don’t care. We are both kids again. Caught up in the excitement of fun, riffing off each other and baseball.

Off we go and climb up into the bleachers, like the true animals we really are. This is the summer of the “Wave.” My father was not one for any of that. He just thinks it’s all beyond silly. We’re right down front. I guess so he can pour his beer on people. When the “Wave” comes around, he gives a half-assed “arms up” still clutching his beer in one hand, cigarette in the other, or it’s perched in the corner of his mouth. He’s been teasing me all fucking season about Enos Cabell and Larry Herndon.

Enos swings and strikes out. But damn; the Tigers are in first place in the AL East and it is historically the toughest league in all of baseball. Sparky knows how to manage a baseball team. He will go on to become the first to win Manager of the year in both the National and American Leagues. He won the World Series when he coached the Cincinnati Reds in 1970. Herndon drops a fly ball, that should have been an easy out. My father, the deathless heckler shouts, “Quit counting your money and catch!” Herndon, grinning, turns and executes a theatrical bow. I guess he’s used to hearing it.

My father is smiling in his urn that is underneath the flight path of SFO Airport

My check in goals are below, not much getting done. I hope to be able to explain why on Sunday. I was trying to link to something, but rather than fidget around for the next 2 hours and get frustrato, insert here, while less elegant, but much more expedient, will have to do for now. My Content Manager is out on va-cay right now. Asshole.

Monday, October 15, 2012

#ROW80 POST 11 – Homeless in 24 Hours or Less...

The following is the very first post I ever made when I first decided I was going to blog about being homeless. At first I thought it was going to be some kind of high, dramatically artful thing, but guess what? That isn’t me and that sure as hell isn’t the life I was living, nor have I ever lived it. My life has been one of high hilarity, confusion, conflict with brief periods of normal. So why on earth I ever thought I should try and be all serious and intoning and shit was beyond me. Probably because I thought homelessness was a serious enough subject to demand that. I’m not sure that anything short of the Mass Extinction of Life demands something that deadly dull, but there it is. More after this bore-fest:

We are homeless. Some of us arrived in this state unexpectedly, while for others of us, it was a long, slow decline. Some of us have made choices abruptly or over an extended period of time, that now seem idiotic, but seemed logical at the time. Some of us are infirm medically, with serious physical illnesses. Some of those illnesses are congenital, some are brought on by bad life-style choices. Some of us are here because our mental faculties do not allow us to function in the "real" world. We may be afraid, subject to panic attacks, irrationality, or we may be bi-polar. We don't all sleep in the streets, or under overpasses and in bus stations. We don't cart all our worldly belongings around in shopping carts or back packs. We don't all shout at the "normal" passers-by, or cause other disruptions in public. We are not all dangerous, to ourselves or others. We are not all addicts or criminals. We are not all "playing the system." We are not all the other things that have been said about us, or to us in ignorance or with malicious intent by "normal" citizens...

We have feelings, dreams and hopes. We do care about what has happened to us and how we've come to be living in a shelter, group home, or rooming house. Some of us are dealing with terrifying health conditions, financial situations, domestic abuse. We are trying to recover from the situation of being homeless. Some of us are dealing with ostracism from family members, because we have been incarcerated. But we have paid our debts to society, and are ready and willing to work and prove ourselves contributing members of this world. We are badly hurt, but we are still trying to craft new lives for ourselves. We still have hope. Some of us are young; mid-twenties or early thirties. Some of us are middle-aged; fifties and sixties. I am pretty sure that my life's agenda did not include being homeless, legally blind, with cardio-vascular disease, emphysema and COPD at age 55. At least, I don't remember wishing for it, but... here I am.

This blog is intended to give the non-homeless a glimpse into the world I and my fellow homeless friends inhabit. This is not a how-to on how to survive homelessness or a directory of useful services in Tampa for the homeless. This is an attempt to describe our view of the world as "homeless" people. We plan to write stories, chronicle our experiences as we move through dealing with the Medical and Government establishments, on our journeys to... "non-homelessness?" Some of this blog will be amusing; some of it heartbreaking; kind of like "real" life. We will start with my story and get the boring out of the way first. We will be adding pictures and will have a few "departments" of other stuff. Sorry to be so non-specific. As we open this up to the public, I would encourage email from readers (if we ever garner any) to send their suggestions for additional material.

So, please read, and please, please feel free to email with comments, criticisms and suggestions. Just please, no hate mail.

-- HomelessViola
-- May 20, 2011

You had to cook WITH your roll of paper towels or someone would steal them at the shelter

This was back before I gave up my "HomelessViola" moniker. But wait! Before I did i got a case of the terminal horrids. To this day, I do not know what possessed me. I became "GratefulViola" for oh, all of about 5 days. I even signed up on some websites. Then the universe collapsed and died and I knew that was just wrong. I went off and played Runescape at the Library for a while and thought about my new life that was struggling to be born and some more hoary old aphorisms abounded. 

It was about then, I found out my old Clan, SpiritZ had pretty much died of indifference, so I couldn’t really be "SpZ Viola Woman" anymore. Damn! This whole viola thing was just all asses and elbows. Actually, I wasn't having too much success as a woman, either. I never really had; didn't play Barbies,  and I didn't have dolly carriages and dress up my cats. I kind of hung out with my dad and read about wars, tanks and blew stuff up. Hmm. Mebbe I needed to rethink the gender part of my handle. I sure as hell wasn't going to become some kind of "violin" thing. I still hate those screechy things and play the violin only for money.

My friends Jeremy and Bryan were coming up with all of these kick-ass handles like "MidnightWolf" and "DamnationDay" and shit and I’m "GratefulViola." Oh, kill me with a spoon! Jesus. Oh, god, "HomelessViola" just sounds well, helpless. I use that as my email handle and I’ve typed ‘helplessviola’ instead of ‘homelessviola’ it’s painful. It’s not me. Now, I’m pissed. I’ve been that more, a lot lately. I never was before all of this, whatever 'this' is.

Geeze, this first post, Could I have been any more non-specific? Swap stories and letters? Let's all hold hands and sing "Kumbaya." Tomorrow is Sharing and Caring day and Beenie Weenies? Not. A. Clue. When I first started to write my blog. Some would argue that after this post, I've made little progress. Fine. Let's move on. This is my blog and my process. Let's just say that this is part of the healing. Process. Beat a dead horse.

Maybe that’s one of the reasons I became homeless, if we skip over the last pointless paragraph is that I did have tons of repressed anger. Everyone was always angrier, meaner and bigger than I was, for a long time. So now in the Clan Chat, I kind of zone out and when I come to... I'm thinking about some of this casual cruel stuff that happened and that I probably caused, too.

We’re in a Clan Chat, with my friends; and they've been through lots of my shit before all of my catastrophe and miracle of miracles; they're still my friends. I type out, “how about this? Fury?”

Jeremy: “Fury?”

Me: “Yeah, ViolaFury.”

Jeremy: “Cool, I like it.”

Me: “Me too.”

Damnation Day: “Nice one, after 90 years, you finally found a good name.” Typical Bryan.

They're what's for dinner!