Comical Musings


Metapost: Not Dead

by on Sep.30, 2010, under Metapost

Merely wishing I were. Customer service jobs are a pain and a half (perhaps a Shenanigan will be posted talking about that in more detail), and I’m doing my best to stay alive and in one piece in spite of panic attacks, abusive customers, and a nagging cough that just won’t stop.

But just to show that I’m still alive and active for the time being, here’s a quick snippet I dashed off at a writing group meeting tonight.

Prompt: Write from the point of view of a murderer, without actually referring to the murder.

I really need to clean the kitchen. The kitchen and the living room. Probably the rest of the house, but the kitchen and the living room really need it, since that’s where—but we’re not talking about that right now. Ah ha ha. Let’s clean the kitchen.
I can feel you staring at me. Just gazing at me in that half-lidded manner while I scrub the dishes. It’s rather lazy to just lie there and watch me do all the work, but I don’t particularly blame you. You probably couldn’t get up to help even if I wanted you to. But we’re not talking about that right now. Ah ha ha. The dishwasher is pleasantly loaded. Every dish exactly where it ought to be, and nothing out of place. I think that while the dishwasher runs, I shall take out the trash.
I pull the garbage bag out of the can, cinch it up nice and tight, tie it shut, and haul it carefully out to the Dumpster. The Dumpster could probably hold several individuals. I wonder if you’d want to take a ride in the garbage truck. I don’t suppose you’d enjoy it. But then, you couldn’t really complain. But we’re not talking about that right now. Ah ha ha. I give the neighbor, Mrs. Derrow, a polite little wave as I pass. She smiles a little and says hello while she works on pruning the rosebushes, snipping at the new shoots and cutting off little buds of life one by one.
And back inside I go, humming softly. It’s time to tackle the living room. I’ll have to get a bigger garbage bag to help get rid of everything. But at least things will be clean again. Your gaze is disapproving, I can tell. You’ve held that grimace of disdain on your face for hours now. But we’re not talking about that right now. Ah ha ha. Gently clear up the glasses, the bottles, the food and other bits of assorted detritus. Tuck the disposables away into the garbage bag. I guess you’re disposable now. But we’re not talking about that right now. Ah ha ha.
Lord, you’re heavy.

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Metapost: Cardboard Tidings, Part 2

by on Aug.10, 2010, under Metapost

So I started a new job, moved 2,000 miles west, and spent several frantic days finding and moving into an apartment on very short notice. I hope you’ll forgive the lack of a review or shenanigan as a result.

A quick tip, though: if you purchase your airline tickets online, do go for whatever sorts of insurance they might offer. Had I paid the extra $19 for such protection, I wouldn’t have wound up nearly stranded in Chicago because of American Airlines and having such an uncaring policy about missing a connection due to acts of God.

Let me also express thanks for the United Airlines customer service agent at Chicago O’Hare who somehow managed to set me up with a standby ticket, as a result of which I actually made it to the job interview on time. There was a lot more, ah, hilarity that ensued afterward, but at least United allowed me to make it there.

In the mean time, there’s more unpacking to do. Also setting things up, attending training, making sure I don’t implode . . . y’know, the usual.

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Metapost: Best-Laid Plans

by on Jun.17, 2010, under Metapost, Shenanigan

Wow. I’ve been neglecting this place, haven’t I? Life, unfortunately, has gotten a bit more demanding (I’m currently helping out with a local church musical, among other things), and it’s getting a bit tricky to write up a new review each week. I’ll try to at least put something up each week, especially given that I don’t want to go inactive just after starting the Charity of the Month.

For now, let me at least post this shenanigan:

I don’t generally believe in circles of Hell for all the minor sins and annoyances to be found out there. To be honest, I’m not even sure about half the circles Dante created (or, for that matter, the rungs of Purgatory or some of the planets in his Heaven), but that’s honestly okay because Dante wrote his Divine Comedy more as a satire than as a direct theological treatise. So I guess I’m safe in that regard.

I do, however, occasionally dream of a realm of poetic justice, in which some of these minor infractions are punished for the span of a nightmare or so. A place where the inventors and perpetrators of Lolspeak are forced to do linguistic studies on their Frankenstein creation*, where the people who ask English majors if they’re planning to be a teacher wind up fielding their own obnoxious career questions, where postmodern authors have to spend a few hours listening to regular readers complaining about their books.

All of this is a roundabout way for me to say that somewhere in this little land of poetic justice, there is a special place for the people who ride my bumper with their high-beam headlights on when I’m already flirting with the wrong side of the speed limit. And it is full of Klieg lights.

* Just try setting out a full conjugation for the verb can has some time.

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Metapost: Charity of the Month

by on May.31, 2010, under COTM, Metapost

So ever since that “Shame, shame” post, I’ve had something of an idea roiling about in my head. As long as people read this blog and maybe get something out of it, maybe I ought to try doing something nice with the attention now and then.

So here’s the idea: the Charity of the Month. Every month, I’ll find a charity with some sort of online presence and write up a little summary of what they do. If you think it’s a good cause, try sending a little money their way. It doesn’t have to be anything huge—even a small donation helps push these organizations toward their goal.

Since this post is showing up on Memorial Day for the American readers, the first charity on the list is the United Service Organizations. The USO provides a variety of services to boost the morale of current and former members of the Armed Forces and their families. This includes entertaining the troops at various military bases (even those on active duty), sending care packages, or running programs like Operation Enduring Care to help wounded soldiers better adjust to their circumstances.

I’m not going to make any comments about specific wars, or war in general*, but I think the USO does a good thing for the men and women in uniform. If you want to support their mission, visit their How to Help page for more information.

* I’d appreciate it if everyone could please stay civil in the comments section, too.

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Metapost: Power actually out

by on May.08, 2010, under Metapost

So during the time since I reviewed Power Out, a series of storms through Ohio have left me in a couple of actual blackouts.

This is probably just coincidence, I’m sure. But if I run into a webcomic called Simon Finds a Girlfriend and Several Million Dollars Tax-Free, I think I just might review it. You never know.

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