Civil War Phenomenon

A friend of mine mailed me this link. He’s a cop so you know it’s legit.

    …the owners of the house shown have been seeing images and hearing voices … They did extensive research …found that a lady once lived in the house …lost her husband… Civil War. Legend … used to sit at a table …look across the fields in anticipation … He never came back. So, they say she still waits. They caught this photo … digital imaging and sound … they claim to be her. …incredible … even a little spooky … It took me about 40 seconds to find it, but when you do, it indeed just stands out. …but so real! …, concentrate around the table and towards the window to the right.Also, if you have a volume control, TURN IT UP as when the image of the lady slowly shows up you can hear some faint murmuring which they say is her ghost talking. Unbelievable!

Go there now.


It is October 31 and all around the world our attention turns to horror. To fright. To fear. El horror, in Spanish. Il spavento, in Italy. La horreur, in French. Eh, Gruwel, gruweldaad, verschrikking, afgrijzen, afschrik, afschuw, walging, weerzin, and/or verschrikking in Dutch.

I am referring of course to NaNoWriMo, which starts tomorrow. My special sympathies go out to those of you who were planning to start a novel in November anyway and now have to explain to people that it doesn’t really have anything to do with NaNoWriMo and put up with them going, “Yeah, yeah.”

Yes, I’ve got a novel in me, and I’m going to get it out this month if it’s the last thing I do. It’s one of those ideas that sort of come back to you in the fallow times, like when you’re commuting or pretending to listen to someone. I thought I’d had it all worked out, given that I’ve been thinking about it for almost a year. But a week or so ago I was talking to someone who’s starting a novel, and she was going on about it and it all sounded very solid. Then she asked me what mine was about and I was stumped.

“Uh,” I said. About? It’s got to be about something? What do you mean by about, exactly?

“Eh, well, it’s got miniature helicopters,” I said.

“Cool.” (This is one supportive friend, man.)

“And a lake of fire.” Luckily I had some crisis and had to terminate the conversation.

So that’s what I’m working on for the month of November. The NaNoWriMo goal is 50,000 words, quality is not a factor. That works out to just under 1,700 words/day, if you write every day all month. My plan, though, is to cut back on blogging, eliminate IM conversations and stop playing wordracer for a while. If I can channel all that word production into this novel, I figure I’ll finish sometimes in the second half of the first week, after which I can make fun of everyone else and bug them on AIM etc.

The Day before Halloween

Candy? Check.
Kids’ costumes? Check.
Kids sick with coughs and sore throats? Check.
Wife away on business? Check. (but she’ll be back in time)
Medicinal whiskey (for me, not the kids)? Check.

Halloween can come, I’m ready.
Unlike Sunday, when some boys already came to our house, trick-or-treating early because they were going to be busy on Thursday… the nerve.

Greetings from the interface of nature and technology

A little spider is spinning a web on my monitor. And I am sitting here watching, raptly.

Continue reading

Dream question

What’s it mean when I dream of a 6’2″ 220 lb (100kg) man (with no mouth) named Pat Murphy?


Genealogy sounds to me like a word that, had they lived longer, the Ramones would eventually have used in a song, like “lobotomy” and “psychotherapy”. Alpha and I have somehow gotten interested in researching our family trees. It’s a good way for me to finally brush up on my two weakest subjects, geography and history. So far I’ve been relying on the famous Mormon genealogy site and have found out a lot more about Alpha’s relatives than about my own. It’s like there are a couple generations missing right after my grandfather, and then I find all these possible ancestors from the 18th century but it’s hard to be sure.

Alpha’s in better shape, as are all Austrians and Germans, and possibly other Europeans. Not only did they move around less, and have access to church records: during the Nazi era, they had to do genealogical research to establish their Arian pedigrees. This information they were required to compile in little booklets, called an “Ariernachweis” or “Aryan Certificate” (crudely translated); this has all the information, going several generations back.

It strikes me that blogging is memoire writing. Maybe I should print out this nonsense for future generations…