Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Robbyfrog

There was an amazing book I once read called "Ishmael" that I remember as a poignant parable pertaining primarily to population. Among this book's quiet charms is that one of the main characters is a large talking gorilla. I found myself listening a little more closely to what a giant gorilla had to say about world affairs, more so than I would have listened to a human character.

But that's not what I wanted to write about today.

Anywhoodley, I usually do not remember the minutae from things what I read, but every now and then, a little slice of knowledge permeates my brainpan, and settles in like a kitten in a warm lap. One tidbit I read is that in general, people tend not to look "up" when they are looking for people and things. Always hide "up" if you are hiding, as your chances of remaining undetectable increase.

But that's not what I wanted to write about.

The little parablette that I took away from Ishmael was the idea of the boiling frog. It went a little something like this:

Listen: If you boil a pot of water, and throw a frog into it, the frog wil scald , and hop around like mad in order to escape its fate. However, if you put a frog in a pot of water, and slowly, ever so slowly, increase the temperature, the frog will sit there patiently, unaware of the impending doom, until it is too late, and the frog is cooked.

I tell you this because I feel like the frog in tepid waters sometimes, unfortunately very well aware that the water is getting warmer by the second, but still unable to surmount the rim of the boiling pot that I have placed myself in. I frequently feel freedom falling from my worldview as I sit complacent and unmoving as the water molecules begin to hum and sizzle around me. Hop, damn you! Hop out of the pot, Robbyfrog! Whats wrong with you, why won't you hop!?!

Friday, July 22, 2005

Just a Quickie...

Lots going on today, big intentional meditations and prayer to Molly, I hope all works out the way it was intended to.




I am very pleased with my work today, about 6 hours to design and model this house in 3D. Yeah, I think I am pretty cool too!

Thursday, July 21, 2005

And They're Off!

"Its fertility on the outside, with Adoption making a play, Fertility, Adoption coming around the final turn...and its Fertility by an ovum, but Adoption is looking awfully responsive...in the home stretch it could be a photo (10410) finish folks, and at the wire, it looks like its going to be..."

Whew!

Yes, with all the other things that we are trying to keep track of, the Goodley Wyfe and I are actively pursuing both Feritilization issues and the Adoption procedures with equal vigor. We had our first consult with the very kindly Fertility doctor and nurse, and are also off to see the Great Wall Adoption people this weekend for an introductory seminar.

Its all very, very complicated, and the worst part is that there is very little for me to do. I was actually kind of hoping that all me spermy scalliwags didn't have tails or something like that, as the exploratory procedures what they have to perform on the Wyfe's plumbing appear frightening to me. Alas, it is what it is, so off we go.

Oh, and speaking of racketeering, it turns out that Invetro Fertilization (IVF) costs about the same as the whole adoption process, about (brace yourself) twelve thousand dollars. I wonder fi there was some canoodling there? Considering that at the end of the adoption process, we are almost guaranteed a child, and at the end of the IVF process we have about a 40-50% chance of delivering a child, well....adoption seems like a prettier option, from a stricly numbers viewpoint. Having said that, I cannot stress how wonderful it would be to have our OWN child...a little Talrob running around dancing in the sunshine.

/sigh

Its a wonderfully complicated issue, isn't it? I suppose the creation of new life should not be bandied about lightly, e'en by my superficially operatig mind. Is it any wonder that i am distracted at work today? I kind of have a lot on me mind today.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Where do you see this relationship going?

This question is usually the death knell for most bachelor men, spoken one night as he is unsuspectingly having a wonderful date with his best girl, getting ready for some serious smooching and "lower" cuddling, as I overheard Ray Romano once refer to it. The question comes from some stygian, swirling morass of estrogen-laden tendrilled blackness....ooo...creepy!

But, when you look around, we really experience a myriad of relationships every single day. Where do I see them going? Golly, they almost all have some form of trackable progression through time. Using the above example, my relationship with my Goodely Wyfe is heading toward Familydom, with us looking at becoming pregnant or adopting our next generation vonderkund. At work, I have but to look into my boss' office to see where this relationship is going. I will own this firm at some time or another, no doubt. At the gym, my relationship is the easiest to track...inches and pounds, baby, inches and pounds. Bumps where I donnae 'ave them, and gettin' rid o' the bumps which I do!

Where I find my relationships stagnating, however, is with my circle of friends. We are doing the same sorts of things that we have been doing for years now, and although I take great joy in them, it is getting a bit stale. There must be some form of "breakthrough" whereas we all either get closer to each other, or break new ground in terms of our relationship which could put the "spark" back into the mix.

Now I know you folks out there may say that your relationships with your friends are suppposed to be casual, lighthearted and fun, and maybe I am reading too much into this "Relationship" with the capital R. There was a time when I thought this might be true. Heck, there was a time when I tried to de-emphasize my current career by turning it into a "day job" and using the other time to pursue what I truly desired, but that didn't work out either. My profession was too important to be turned into a day job, and my friends are too important to be turned into casual acquaintences. I am not exaggerating here, as my friends are much, much better than yours. There, I have said it. Its true, and you have to believe me. There MUST be something from this League of Super-Extraordinary Gentlemen that spins us into the next level of friendshipdom.

What am I looking for? I do not know. I will hopefully begin to focus a bit more on the physical side of my friendly relationships, through learning how to swordfight and perhaps mountain biking. What were you thinking when I said physical? Cheeky! But apart from that, I am stymied.

I certainly hope that it will not take some horrific event to make me feel bound more tightly to this wonderful group, as I feel bound to other people what I hardly know simply because we weathered some tragedy or another together. There certainly must be some way to take this thing to the "next level" without it being a jarring experience.

Hmmm...fine then, perhaps I will have to sleep with them all....

Oh, you need a question, eh? Fine then. Have you noticed the same rythms in relationships of soaring to a plateau, only to have it linger much too longly up there? What did you do to jump start them? Did you (gasp) simply cut them loose?

Friday, July 15, 2005

..and I even like Pina Coladas....

Well what a funny day yesterday was! After clacking away at my keyboard like a crystal meth laden chicken "peckin' at the dough" to update my blog yesterday, I went off to the gym, and spent my hour on the exercise bicycle.

Whatever else happens in this post, note that I am very, very proud of myself for going and riding the exercise bike every day this week! Huzzah for the body sculpt!

After the gym, I made my way to the convenience store for a bit of fluid replacement, when all of a sudden, water started just falling from the sky all around me! I state this in this manner because it was truly a remarkable thing to see....it wasn't "just rain" to me...water was actually just FALLING FROM THE SKY!!! I can't remember the first time I saw rain, or snow for that matter, but once again I was able to slip my +7 Wondrous Goggles of Seeing Things for the First Time and was left awestruck.

All the conditions were perfect....I was dehydrated (I had been using the sauna as well, so was down about a pint of water through me pores), feeling good, over heated, and just had a discussion that very morning with a colleague of mine about how much I loved thunderstorms and walking through them. I couldn't resist the urge, and off I went.

Nay, Bethesda MD, where my office is, keep your resplendent overhanging awnings and deep eaves, for this sojourner requires no shelter from the pounding, driving torrents! I was soaked to the bone in seconds as the driving walls of water buffeted my skin, but oddly made me smile and strut instead of cower and tremble. Arms spread wide, I walked the street through the thundering storm, head held as high as I could without getting my contact lenses blasted from my eyes. It was truly glorious. I strutted and preened, flaunting my nigh invulnerable feelings to any what gazed upon me. View me, mortals, view your Rain God, and be joyous!

View me, pay attention to me, love me....this needy vibe is rooted deeply into my psyche. It is no wonder than that after I made my way to my parking garage, and was faced with a wet soggy ride home, I promptly stripped down in the middle of the garage, towelled myself off, and made my way home. Oh, the glories of public nigh-nudity! I wish I could strut my soft but not all that unattractive body around all the time. /sigh but for the "decency" laws on the books.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

All Of My Ends Are Alight!

I am, of course, referring to the candle burnination saying. I am hectic, frazzled, overtired and ready for love today! Watch out Goodely Wife, as I will be coming on like a drunken prom date, but fear not, for I should be passing out in similar fashion as well. Ah, to be young and in love!

Work is blowing up all over, and I am doing quite well, if crazily. I am out of here soon, and heading to the gym. I have never been to the gym in the middle of the afternoon before, so I hope to get in there to beat the snoggins out of the after work rush, which I hear is a cattle call. But, regardless, I will be there, trashy vampire sex book in one hand, exercise bike in the other.

Yes, I know I own a REAL bike, a humdinger named Ethel that is just supercharged with wonderful outdoorsy vibes. So far, though, I havent been able to go home from work (or get up early enough) and suit up to ride her. I think it is the camaraderie of the gym that I like, plus there is a friendly fella there that I have developed a "gym friendship" with, and I like the idea that he gives me crap if I don't show up. I know I should ride me bonnie wee lass Ethel, but I am not, and that's that. So there. Should is a ridiculous word anyway.

Speaking of ridiculous, here is a lovely picture of my World of Warcraft character, Fastred the Hunter, dressed like a pirate. Did I mention I love this game?

No matter how exhausted I am, no matter how much I say that THIS time, working out is going to be the most important thing right now, I still can make time to play my video game. I love it, love it, love it! Here's another pic!




He' s great! Look at those arms! Mighty!

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

And by "Title", I meant.....

"Entitlement"...

This is an issue that I have been wrasslin' with for quite some time in the ole' laundry dryer that is my mind. It goes a little something like this.

I am a shining example of the adage that "My grandfather studied war, so my father could study industry, so I could study art". My grandfather was a farmer turned plumber, my father worked for Continental Can Company (specialized steelworking, amongst his other jobs what he undertook to make ends meet) and I am now an architect. I am extremely grateful to those that came before me. When we lived in northern New Jersey (just a stone's throw from New York City), my family, friends and most folk that I met were working class, holding two or three jobs to provide the best for their families.

I live now outside of Washington DC, some would argue the center of the Western world. Washington is an interesting "city", in that since nothing can be taller than the 555 feet of the Washington monument, we have no skyscrapers, so the scale is much more suburban. More importantly to this topic, Washington has little to no manufacturing at all. There is no garment district, no shipping, no warehousing, no mills of any kind. Our sister city of Baltimore is a much better example of an "urban" city, SO far away at 40 minutes north.

The result is that, in general, what we have here is not "farmer, steelworker, architect", but "diplomat, lawyer, entitled". So often I see examples of people that carry themselves with an air of entitlement that on my best days irks me, and on my worst days makes me ashamed to be a member of the human race. This sense of entitlement transcends age and gender in my fine hamlet of Washington DC, from kids I have had in my car disappointed that the seats weren't heated, to the business man berating the clerk at the parking permit salesbooth to the woman I saw walking in front of her baby's stroller that her South American nanny was pushing.

Yes, I know that when I was a kid, I complained about not having cable t.v., I have yelled at my share of obtuse and uncaring clerks, and well...I don't have a nanny correlation (as all the nannys I ever met were very kind to me! naga nooch!) but you have to stand there and see it, witness it and feel the wave of "this is the way the world revolves around me" that palpitates from the Entitled in our midst..

Its the folk that treat their beautiful, intelligent girlfriends like ass because they know that they will always get another, the folk that don't pick up things that they knock over in stores because they know someone else will take care of it for them, its the folks that drive as if they owned the road, littering as they go. The folk that talk down or berate the minimum wage earners all around them. This tanscends "spoiled" and goes further.

No question for today (at least none formally proposed), but an urging. Please, please conduct yourself with an aspect of graciousness, and not entitlement. Everything you receive, whether it be wrapped up and anonymously dropped off at your doorstep, or if it is a result of your hard work and sweat equity is a gift, given to you by the universe, and should be appreciated in the same manner. Even if you never had to work a minimum wage job before in your life, think about the person that is cleaning up your job site, whipping up your smoothie, working on your car or issuing your parking permit. Just by being able to read this rant, you have more privileges that 80% of the modern world. Be thankful for being able to view, as I am thankful that you have.

Monday, July 11, 2005

The Chimp What Hates Beauty...

I had the opportunity to step out on the town with a good friend of mine this past weekend, in that wonderfully charming but slightly pathetic way that only a married man can step out with a good friend of his. Something akin to the movie Swingers, they were fun to watch, but you knew ultimately that nothing significant was going to happen. Hmm...thats probably a bad example, because the swinger boys did hook up from time to time. In any event, I digress.

We were out for the infamous if slightly cliche "Burger and Beer", which our nation's capitol provides in abundance. After a faulty start, some terrible table service resulting in a dangerous brush with Insatnt Karma (now in a delightful breakfast flake), we were well sated with the aforementioned beefy & hoppy delectables.

Desperately hanging on to my own sense of being a hip "man about town" for whatever that means, I didn't want to arrive at our next destination (downtown cocktail party, baby!) before 10:30 p.m. the earliest. This is, of course, amazingly late for yours truly, but I can rally when I need to. What to do for the next 90 minutes or so? Being so far into the "hip" of Washington DC that we could look right at the pelvis, we decided to try a trendy "lounge bar" called Cloud.

or Sky, or Zephyr, or Waft......you get the idea...

The formula is such; very light coloured walls, 27 different fruity and fancy "tinis" (I think there was a walnut-dryer lintini that they were offering...), lightly pumping technotrontic lounge music, foreign national bartenders, and distantly affected waitstaff and "hostess" which resembled no tasty cupcake that I ever had.

Bottom line: I LOVED it! I eat this stuff up like nobody I know. I feel hip and cool and proudly metrosexual as I sit in hip and cool and proudly metrosexual bars. I delighted in being courted in that oddly demeaning way by swarthy Latin American men seemingly disappointed in my banal Gin & Tonic order. I also loved the incredibly attractive young lady behind the bar that did nothing the entire time that we were there besides text message on her blackberry bluetooth portable wirless wifi Ipadoodle. She was strikingly handsome, with olive skin, light eyes and wearing (by our ogling acumen) exactly 2 items of clothing.

We (my dear friend and I) got to talking about the fabulously beautiful people in the world, and how much we loved and hated them. Now, I am a reasonably handsome man, make no mistake, and have taken full advantage of my looks and charm to get to where I am today. Thus, I find it tough to wish serious ill will on the idle beautiful. However, I did find myself running with the notion that maybe, just maybe, it would be delightful if a wild chimp came running into the Cloud Bar, leapt o'er the counter, and lightly but energetically mauled this young woman for just a bit. That doesn't make me a bad guy, does it? Just a light mauling, to let this ethereal beauty know that bad things happen.

Yes, yes...I know, she has her own problems, issues, baggage and the like. We all do, even the impressively beautiful. In fact, as I was sitting there kind-of-but-actually-without trying to-cooly-unobtrusivle-but yet intentionally totally staring at her, I noticed that she had a haunted look about her, one which I couldn't quite put my finger on, and then I got it. She wasn't making eye contact with anyone. How odd, I thought, considering my own "love me, everyone" vibe that has me locking orbs with anyone I see in the hopes that we develop a rapport of some sort. Here was an amazing beauty that I had to only hypothesize had developed this defense mechanism of not looking at folk (especially us creepy older guy bar folk) directly in the eye, for fear of having to fend off unwanted advance vs. unwanted advance. It seemed sad that something within her may have felt like she couldn't share that part of herself with people.

Where is your beauty held, faithful reader? You can be honest here, we don't mind the occasional flare of egotism in the virtual world. In fact, we encourage it. So holla back, challah bread....where is YOUR beauty? Is it physical? Are you a hottie? Can I have your phone number? Is it in your voice, do you sing or play a musical instrument? Don't be shy now, everyone has beauty.

Now the stinger. How often do you share that rare and precious gift that is your beauty with the rest of the world? Do you hide it? Are you afraid that other's won't recognize it for beauty? I say pish posh, applesauce! Flaunt it! Send it out there! Fly, live, jump and jive....

but watch your back for the chimps.....

Friday, July 08, 2005

A Milestone Event...

under the working title of "my cat's urinary tract"

Well, this is it, the big "tenth post" to my blog that marks my "going public" and alerting all my friends and family of what I am up to and encouraging them to send this link to their friends and family as well. I feel kind of proud of myself, that I have somehow stuck with it this far, and that you will now be able to share and converse about this semi regular look into what I like to consider a very ordinary life well lived.

On to my cat's urine, you say? Well, I wouldn't have it any other way!

My cat is named Chow Maine, he is a twenty something pounded orange tabby, half Wild Asian Leopard Cat, and half Maine Coon cat. He is a fussy monster that has been a part of my life for about 12 years now. I love him dearly, and all his finicky ways.

As it turns out, one of his "finicky ways" is that when his human lacky (read: Yours Truly) decides to play video games for 6 hours upon his return from vacation instead of doing his chores (read: cleaning out his box), he likes to pee on the furniture. This time, Chow went ahead and caught my Goodely Wyfe's cross-stitch bag as well. I of course, blame myself.

Addiction is a crazy, wacky thing. I am so glad that to this day I am still mortified by what my father would do to me if he ever found out I used drugs. My current addiction or hobby is this video game that I play, and I am hoping that I can start to wean myself off of the habit. They tell me that it only takes two weeks to make or break a habit, and my recent cold turkey nail biting resolution proves this to be true. Can I do the same with World of Warcraft? Two weeks knowing that the game is there, but not being able to play it? It gives me so much pleasure, but it really does have quite the negative impact on my real world life. This one won't be easy.

I will let you know how I do, faithful reader, and I thank you for keeping up!

Thursday, July 07, 2005

"So much nicer to come home....."

I will SO not try to reset my metaphysical tripometer today!

I state that for myself, so that I can enlist you, my faithful readers, in my resolve to not try to re-right all of the "wrongs" in my life on this, my first day back from vacation. I don't know how you do it, but I am a constant re-starter. I drive myself crazy almost every "first", be it first of the week, month or year, making all sorts of promises to myself about weight, work ethic, relationships, fiscal and domestic responsibility, etc. Setting myself up for "failure" seems to have been a major theme in my life.

Can anyone really be expected to go to the gym, wear a tie, not screw around on the internet at work, stop touching ones own naughty bits like a red-bottomed baboon watching the bannana channel, do all the household paperwork, mow the lawn and lose twenty pounds all in one day? Probably not, but that's how my wacky mind works. And by "works", I mean "chugs along like a busted up coal-fueled steam engine rattling atop turn of the century clattery tracks".

But, do we abandon these plans to be better faster, taller, slimmer, more? No, probably not ever for me. It would be delightful to live every day like my birthday though, where I am a slothful decadent ne'er do well man about town, but that would lead to a Marlon Brando-esque level of corpulence and self delusion that even I couldn't handle.

Again, back to balance, it would seem. I should have looked up the latin word for "balance" to come up with my new screen name (see: Terrafontis) as that seems to be the focus of this whole "life" thing that I have carved out for myself. There are so many push and pulls in life that one becomes aware of on a daily basis, it is akin to one giant metaphysical taffy pull. (mmmm....taffy!) Sometimes my balance points make me feel good and complex, and not just some droney worker bee dreaming through life. I am terribly (almost detrimentally) self aware, but better too self aware than the opposite, which is to go through life never having plumbed your own depths (see "naughty bits" above....cheeky!)

Before I list my own "balance points", I would like to know what yours might be. What major fulcrums do you tip back and forth on? Do you bargain with yourself while dealing with your balance points...like "I will eat Balsa Wood Crunchies (tm) for a month, but for now I am going to have a pint of Creamery Butter & Bacon Ice Cream (tm)."?

Friday, July 01, 2005

I Love the Gay!

Just wanted to get this out of the way, in case there is any misunderstanding in this or any other post. I will even type it again: I Love The Gay! If you are a man and woman and feel love towards another man or a woman, well, heck, who am I to get in the way? Have a good time, and if you are a gay man, don't forget to hit on us married men from time to time, its really VERY flattering.

Being of reasonably sound geek mind and body, I do sorely enjoy the science fiction. I read Wil Wheaton's blog, and look forward to science fiction and gaming conventions as my big vacation during the summer. It is amazing to me, then, when I go back in time to look at something that I remember fondly, and find that either it has (unlikely) or I have changed dramatically.

I remember ST:TGN as a pioneer, reinventing the Star Trek franchise for a, well, new generation of geeks, dorks and nerds like me. Thanks to the wonders of Netflix, I queued up the first season of dvds, and planned a lovely trip down memory lane!

Disappointed! I was awed and shocked to see how cheesy the special effects were, how silly the dialog, and well...how gay everyone seemed to be. To be honest, the original Star Wars movie had better special effects than Star Trek did, and was more believable and less dated...and considering the era which pumped out THAT masterpiece...that's saying something. Star Trek, The Next Generation went, in my dark and spiderwebby mind, from groundbreaking sci fi to shmaltzy kitsch...just. like. that.

I now look at some of my latest "passions", especially the Lord of the Rings movies, and wonder if, in 15 years time, will I look back on them and think that they are cheesy and silly. I pray to the elder tentacled Shogggoth that this never comes to pass, but you know how tempermental those deities can be.

So, again, I put to you, what have you gone back to reclaim, only to find it ever changed? Was there a hangout that you loved as a child, a country lane, or even a television show or movie that your tried to do some glory reclaiming on, only to be thwarted? Better yet, anything that you went back to only to find that it was BETTER than you ever remembered? I think I would rather hear about the latter....Polyanna style!