Describe how you would manage your own radio or TV station.

I started in on a list of things, but, you know, I do understand that I really don’t know where I’d even start these days. On the rare occasions I’ve been in a car lately listening, I’ve heard the music stations going to something like twelve-minute stop sets. How the hell do you keep people around at all with that?

I seem to remember the goal of a commercial broadcaster being enticing the listener to stay around long enough to hear some commercials.

Whenever I’m listening to a podcast of a radio show, there’s normally a live read in the first segment, a break at the bottom half, then maybe two spots in the second half of the show.

I still do make it a point not to go out of my way to avoid commercials.

I can remember the big thing with MythTV was that you could actually automatically skip commercials. I never did that; selling spots is how broadcasters (and podcasters) earn their money. Recently I’ve bought things ranging from a security system, to socks, to fruitcake.

I guess, though, one of the big things that’s changed is the nature of audiences, who are more likely today not to worry so much about things being in real-time. I know people who watch most sporting events hours, if not days, delayed.

Would watching the Failcons fail to fail at the Superdome be any more disappointing if it was delayed? Or, since it wasn’t on here, than watching it live?

But the Redskins didn’t lose today, so there’s that, I suppose.

I’m really not feeling this today, for a variety of reasons. That we’ve not finished unpacking is probably a major consideration.

Tomorrow’s prompt might prompt me to write more.


Write about what you think you will be like and what you will be doing 10 years or 20 years from now.

Given my paternal history, combined with my physical condition, the answer is probably, “dead.” My father’s father was 54 when he died. My dad was 59. Given the pattern you see there, you’d say 64 for me, which is more than twenty years later. But when you calculate in the average ten years of life that MS normally takes off, I’m back to dying at 54. But if I can make it to 71, there’s a chance I’ll live forever.

The longer answer, and more to the question is, “I have absolutely no idea.”

I probably won’t have any kids. I hope I’m still married. I hope I’ll have been able to work to retirement, but who knows? I think now, at 40, I’ve lived long enough to know, ultimately, who I am, and what my character is.

I retreat. I get lost when htings are going wrong. To me, there’s nothing wrong with declaring defeat, and moving on to something else.

Have there been exceptions? Sure. (see: staying with the same woman for thirteen-plus years, almost ten of those as a married couple.)

I apologize; I’m distracted. We just moved in to our new place. I am now residing inside the Capitol Beltway. So I’m really not focused. Hopefully my residence, here, will let some of the innovative folks at Georgetown SOM use me as a guinea pig.


Birthday Tres

Today is my mother’s birthday. Yes, three days after her father, two after my younger brother.

When it comes to the date, it’s almost as if there was some sort of event in February that might prompt people to form babby.

She’s still down visiting her dad for his birthday on Monday. So what to write about? I don’t even know, really. I’m kinda spent after my missive about recruiters earlier on control-h.org.

I think the guy who I called after writing that called me back, but I was too busy to answer.

Apology delivered, or something. Whether it was accepted, I don’t know. It’s like my parents taught me something, or something.

At the same time, I really don’t care whether it was accepted. I did feel bad about upsetting him, but he’s making money off what I view as an unconscionable system.

I’m taking tomorrow off to help pack for our move on Saturday. I’m still very much of the let-someone-else-do-it, and sort everything out later mentality. Part of a life spent with the Army. My mother had likely never been east of Pensacola, or west of Houston when she got on an airplane to go be with her Infantry 2nd Lieutenant husband whose unit had been moved out of Vietnam to Japan.

Fingers crossed that we should be finished with pretty much everything by a week from now.


Travel recap.

I’d initially typed, “[t]rip out was uneventful.” Then I remembered fucking Atlanta. If there’s one thing in that city that routinely fails more than their football team, it’s the airport.

Since I’m barely able to function these days, I requested a wheelchair. The United pickup coming out of IAD was simple enough. When we got to ATL, I got a chair just coming off the plane. The airport employee ferried me seamlessly through to a different terminal, and right past the security checkpoint, headed towards the baggage claim/ground transportation.

Uh. We had a connecting flight. Oh. So back through the TSA checkpoint.

(And this is where I tried to find the South Park clip where the Toilet Safety Administration was telling people she need to “check ya asshole.” But my computer crashed, and I don’t feel like going back to find it again….)

But after that, we still had enough time to grab a bite to eat, and get on the flight to Gulfport.

Time on the coast was, for the most part, okay. As I wrote yesterday, my body was really giving me issues by the end of the day on Monday.

Tuesday morning we made it to Gulfport without any real issues. The folks at the screening there were okay. Being that it was a Tuesday morning, things were pretty slow.

Until we got to Atlanta. Again. They wouldn’t pick me up from the gate. I really needed to use the restroom. After a bit of negotiating with the gate troll, I gave up, and ambled to the bathroom. After I finished, I just sat down to try and compose myself. My brother and his wife found me, and my SIL went and fetched me a chair. No airport staff helped. My brother pushed me through the airport to and from where we needed to go.

Other takeaways?

I’ve long been a big critic of the 737. Our last flight, from ATL to IAD, was a two-class 737. Compared to the CRJs we’d flown previously, it was incredibly comfortable.

Didn’t hit Waffle House. Just ran out of time. I’m also not sure what effect smothered, covered, chunked hash browns might have had on me.

But it’s good to be home. And I got a full day of work in today, even though I hadn’t planned to do that.

So to look forward to Thanksgiving, and a bit of a real break. Maybe. This coming weekend, it’s all about the move.


Birthday Part two — my brother

i don’t really know how it was for him, as we were travelling back to the District of Suburbia.

I ordered dinner, so there’s that, I guess. His choice.

Seeing family for my grandfather’s birthday last night was pretty good. My body held up, for the most part, until the very end of the evening. I’m tired, but I’m “home.” (Home, of my own, starts late this week when we finally move in.)

Otherwise, I’m checking the election results. No. I didn’t vote absentee. One of the things that’s been running through my head lately is that maybe, if you assume that government power is derived from the consent of the governed, that by choosing not to vote I am withholding that consent.

For Virginia, though, having the fucking Byrd Organization back in charge is going to mean chaos.


So kill me. That’s what the plurality wants, anyway.


Information about my trip for my grandfather’s 90th birthday.

Almost forgot to write in amongst all the um, fun, today. We were there, and that’s what’s important. Nice meal, some time spent with aged relatives, including my grandfather. While there’s familiarity here, it is different than I remember.

That said, seeing my mother with that look of accomplishment on her face; this is probably where she ought to be. My brotther and I discussed some both on the drive back to the hotel, and again when we had a nightcap in the hotel bar.

Good food today. I am feeling the strains of overexertion. *shrug* Things will be more relaxing after this coming weekend.

Now ot unwind, and prepare to head back north in the morning.



Funny that this is my prompt on yet another day that my fantasy teams lay an egg again. The Saints are on a bye this week, and I’m out of town. *shrug* Tomorrow is my grandfather’s ninetieth birthday, so my brother, his wife, and I came down.

I will write more about the particulars tomorrow.

I’m staying by myself in a casino hotel room.

I suppose I could be either more down, or more excited about this, but….

I do really like what the Saints and Patriots are doing when it comes to football.

I’m really happy to see the blessed Aaron Rodgers lose to a really-not-very-good Chargers team.

I’m happy to see that the Dolphins might have relinquished the bottom spot in the league to the woeful Redskins. I have serious doubts that the Monday Night game will even be worth tuning in.

So, there’s a Sunday night for me. Hard to imagine that this could be more blah.

Maybe staggering down to the gaming floor will raise m mood.


If you had three wishes, what would they be? (Do not ask for three more wishes)

I’m writing as I listen to Walk-Ins Welcome with guest Melissa Chen I will try to keep that from affecting my writing here.

That said, it is redirecting my thoughts, here.

One: I could easily find three individual things health-wise that I’d like to be cured of. *quick STFW* Okay. Found this. Numbers 1-7, 9, 11-15 are all symptoms I deal with. So, my first wish would be, if not a cure, significant relief from those. MS is terrible, and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone, even the worst person in the world. With Halloween on Thursday, there was a lot of attention to this guy who has a haunted house for which you have to sign a waiver, and if you actually make it through, you’d get something like $20,000. My thought about it was that I might be able to actually be able to make it through because of the things that are physical discomfort. No, I couldn’t. After listening more to the description, I doubt I’d pass the initial physical. So much for that. Waterboarding? Yeah, try a medical test where you actually pass out from pain.

Two: Though this is really an outgrowth from the first, I really want to find something I desire again. At this point, there’s very little I want or value. There’s things that I’d be upset about if I lost, but, at the same time, I’ve lost I could delve more in to something in my personal life, here, but I won’t. The Gen X in me comes back with a feeble, “whatever.” Ultimately, I’m going to do what allows me to look at myself in the mirror (well, for as long as I’ve got a bit of vision left), but I’m not doing it out of some desire. I want to want something.

And, here, I’m drawing a blank for what I’d want for number three.

So, yeah, this prompt was a big failure. Maybe number three is better writing tomorrow.


Introduction, etc..

November is here. Time to write. Time to cease shaving my upper lip.

I first did this write every day in November for the first time in 2010. This was something that’d been going on on The Open Diary, somewhere I’d been writing since 1999.

I’d kind of fallen off writing for a while after I really started getting serious with the woman I’d marry. (I met her in 2006, and was pretty light on writing in 2007 and 2008. When I was diagnosed with MS in early 2010, I started writing in earnest again.) I’d see people doing this, and decided to give it a shot.

When I finished, I felt a bit of accomplishment.

(Here’s where I had a bunch more stuff I’d written, but I deleted it.)

OD went away for awhile, and I kept things going on my own personal blog. OD is now back, and I thank them for honoring my subscription from years ago.

Suffice it to say that this is National Journal Writers’ Month, “NoJoMo” number ten. My psychologist (yes, I’m seeing one after being referral by my neurologist) has identified my writing stretches as compulsive behavior.

When I was at my lowest point, I started writing daily in the month leading up to my birthday. This year, I managed not to do that. I credit Dr. V. for this, along with my lack of dedication to it last year. When I was doing it last year, I found it not as fulfilling as it’d been when I was shivering away in my eighth of a cubicle in an antiquated data center with the thermostat set at 65 degrees. (Those solid state electronics last so much longer when they’re operated at below their vendor-specified range….)

Even if writing like this is a compulsion, I do think I still get something out of it. It kind of sets my mind in the holiday mood. November this year is going to be incredibly busy.

First up? Sunday my brother, his wife, and I head off to the Land Mass for my grandfather’s 90th birthday celebration. I’ve not flown since my diagnosis, and am really worried about how the flights are going to affect me. Thankfully, the airlines were actually helpful in getting me set up with assistance getting through security, and a wheelchair for going through the airports.

Second is moving. My wife and I have rented a place inside the Beltway. This will serve as our first permanent home outside Tidewater. I could go on for hours about my relief about being away from there, but I won’t. Let’s just say that things have gone incredibly well for me, just because I’m not there anymore.

Third will be health issues, and getting settled. I have set up my prove-you’re-disabled meeting with WMATA so I can take the short bus to and from my doctors’ appointments, work, etc.. I also have an appointment with an ENT at Georgetown to address some longstanding issues revealed when I was tyring to get my dental issues resolved. I also plan to switch my PCP to one of the providers in Alexandria. I will also be finding a new dentist there; I do really like the guy I’m seeing out here, but it’s going to be too much of a trek to get out here to see him.

Fourth, of course, is Thanksgiving week, and all the fun that goes along with it. I still have absolutely no idea what I’ll be doing, or where I’ll be.

But I will be writing. Hopefully, with all the craziness, I’ll be able to stick with it without interruption this year. (I forgot one day last year; just completely slipped my scarred mind….)

And we’re off and running in year ten.

NoJoMo 2019

Hat-tip to this, which is providing some of my prompts for this year. Obviously, they’re intended for a much younger audience, but it provides a bit to work with.

  1. Introduction, etc..
  2. If you had three wishes, what would they be? (Do not ask for three more wishes)
  3. Football
  4. Start of the birthday bits
  5. Birthday Deux
  6. Travel recap.
  7. Describe how you would manage your own radio or TV station.
  8. Birthday Tres
  9. The saying goes, “Money cannot buy happiness.” Do you agree or disagree? Why?
  10. Write about what you think you will be like and what you will be doing 10 years or 20 years from now.
  11. Veterans’ Day
  12. Free-write
  13. Two men or women have it easier in our culture? If so, why do you think so?
  14. Write about your biggest fears (reach-back to 2010).
  15. Halftime free-write
  16. if you could change one thing in your life what would it be and why? (reach-back to 2010)
  17. Christmas Shopping
  18. How would you describe yourself? How would your best friend describe you? (reach-back to 2012)
  19. What was the most creative excuse you’ve come up with to get out of a date, an appointment, or doing a task? (reach-back to 2013)
  20. Write about an experience that changed a long held belief you had. (reach-back to 2013)
  21. Thanksgiving Plans
  22. Write a letter to your 13 year old {sic} self. (reach-back to 2013)
  23. Describe your most recent doctor visit. I’m specifically looking for the one(s) you see most often. (reach-back to 2016)
  24. Write about three things you did for the first time in the past year. (reach-back to 2016)
  25. Recap of your year month-by-month.
  26. Healthcare situation (reach-back to 2016, trip to Georgetown.)
  27. Write about social media. What are your accounts? What have you set aside?
  28. Thanksgiving
  29. Shopping/Free-write
  30. Wrap-up