Archive for February, 2007

“Scrotum” Dangerous for Children


I’m so disappointed in people today.

Apparently Susan Patron’s Newbery Award-winning book, The Higher Power of Lucky, is being kept off the shelves of school libraries because the word “scrotum” appears on the first page.
Details:  NPR, Publisher’s Weekly, NYTimes, and the LA Times.

All Gone


All Gone
Originally uploaded by Kelly Sue.

The work on the garage began yesterday. They dug out the back pond, removed sections of fence and uprooted two pine trees, two rhododendron and a weeping something or other that broke my heart. Once this is all done, we’re going to need to do some serious gardening to get our homey feeling back. I do like the notion of a clean slate though. And I can’t say I’m sad to see the trumpet vine go.

Claude came home from the vet’s office yesterday. He did pretty well during the evening and managed to let me sleep a full night last night, but he got into a box of manga at some point and chewed up three volumes. Jerk. Then, this morning while I was having my breakfast, he ripped into a box of tissue and gnawed on one of my knitting needles. I saved the needle and I suppose the Kleenex is no big loss. Still. I’ll be glad when he’s done with the chewing business.

K-9 Club came and picked him and Applejack up about half an hour ago. Claude freaked out a little — he didn’t want to get in the van — but Holly was patient and when we stopped tying to force him, her dog managed to lure him in under his own power. I’m anxious to hear how he does at the park.

I’ve been in a horrible pickle for a week (or more), work-wise, trying to figure out the next scene in the 30 Days of Night project I’m doing. I actually think I had a bit of a breakthrough last night and hope to make some real progress today. I’ve also enlisted Drew to discuss it with me. It’s amazing with a difference that makes. We haven’t really started yet and I already feel I’m in his debt. (It was tough to ask because it meant I needed him first to read two previous scripts, but he was gracious about it. And I was desperate. That helped.)

EDITED TO ADD: Good news/ bad news!  Good news: Claude did well at the park!  And since he’s had his exercise, he’s completely chill right now, just hanging out sleeping in the sunshine in the foyer.  Bad news: while he was frolicking in the park, I discovered a pile of dog poop in the diningroom.  For a moment, I considered pretending I didn’t see it so that Fraction would have to clean it up when he got home.  Then I realized that would mean living with dogshit in my diningroom and I came to my senses.  But for a moment…?  I confess I was tempted. 

Hold On


I just heard something on the radio so outlandish and infuriating I think I must have misunderstood. I’m hoping, anyway:

Apparently, rape victims in Missouri are billed for their rape kits. They have to pay for their evidence collection.

Could this be true…?

THIRD EDIT: From Senator Michael Gibbons’ website:

“Imagine how you would feel if your home were burglarized and you were told you would have to pay for the evidence collection necessary to identify, arrest, and prosecute the burglar. That’s what happens to rape victims,” Bennett [Barbara Bennett, Executive Director of Women’s Support and Community Services in St. Louis] said. “I am very grateful to Sen. Gibbons for sponsoring this important legislation. I hope people will pick up their phones today and call their State Senators and Representatives to urge them to vote for this bill.”

SECOND EDIT: Warren Ellis passed along this link and message from Steven Perez:

Yep, Kelly Sue is right. In fact, there’s a bill up in the state senate right now concerning this:

EDITED TO ADD: I haven’t found a definitive answer to my question yet, but I did find this bit, which appears to be from a Truman State University newspaper in 2003:

An added challenge is that rape
victims have to pay for the evidence
to be collected when they report the
crime, LeBaron said.

“I don’t know how this crime got
to be treated so differently from
other crimes,” LeBaron said. “When
rape victims go to the hospital, they
are billed for that. State programs
can help pay for the testing, but only
as long as the victim agrees to pros-

What the hell?!

  • After last night’s Firefox Crash-a-palooza, Mail tanked on me this morning. WTF? I ran disk utility and repaired permissions. This is what I got:

Feb 26 08:29:03: Disk Utility started.
Repairing permissions for “Lady Snowblood”
Determining correct file permissions.
Permissions differ on ./private/var/log/secure.log, should be -rw——- , they are -rw-r—–
Owner and group corrected on ./private/var/log/secure.log
Permissions corrected on ./private/var/log/secure.log
Permissions repair complete

Should I worry?

  • Today’s A Word A Day e-mail amused me:

This week we have dug up five words you may not have known existed.

misology (mi-SOL-uh-jee) noun

Hatred of logic or reason.

[From Greek miso- (hate) + -logy (science, study).]

Today’s word in Visual Thesaurus:

-Anu Garg (words at

“Fletcher laughed. ‘Your coyness smacks of misology. Sinking back down
to that dark place within yourself, the one that you tried so
desperately to suffocate.’”
Chris Mooney; Deviant Ways; Atria; 2000.

  • Wayne Coyne was on NPR’s “This I Believe” series this morning.
  • Claude comes back from the Vet’s office today. Oofah.
  • Judging by the noise outside, they’ve started work on the new garage. Woo hoo! Fraction’s go the camera in LA, so I’ll try to take some photos later but they’ll be futurephone pics.
  • Other than running to pick up the dog, I expect to be home chained to the desk all day. Say a prayer for me.

Blogging The Oscars


I am having the weirdest night. Firefox — a program that almost never crashes — has crashed on me FOUR TIMES as I’ve tried to compose this. Here’s hoping we make it through this time.

Okay. Where was I?

I considered posting this on the Diary section of The Engine as I thought it would be fun if people could contribute as the night progressed, but The Engine isn’t the WEF; I still feel like a bit of an outsider over there and I’m not sure I have a good sense of what would fly. So here we go…

  • Lucy Liu is ten kinds of charming. I feel like I need more Lucy Liu in my life;
  • Patricia Field is apparently an old dude. That makes a certain kind of sense, I suppose, I just didn’t know;
  • Cate Blanchett and Kate Winslet both look stunning. What’s this about Blanchett playing Bob Dylan…?
  • Was that Kristen Dunst in the frumpy gray frock? What’s with that girl? She’s so pretty. Why does she insist on looking like an old lady?
  • When did I become such a Jewish mother?
  • (In fairness, I only glimpsed the dress. I might not be as bad as I think. I bet it is though. She seems to have a thing for sacks.)
  • I think Ellen’s doing a fine job thus far. Would it have killed her to have worn a tie, though? I mean, if you’re going to wear a suit, wear a tux. And do it up. It’s the Oscars;
  • Nicole Kidman and Daniel Craig: wow. They’re so… ideal. I wonder if they’re real or if I’m dreaming them;
  • Aw. I loved Alan Arkin in Little Miss Sunshine and I didn’t see Dreamgirls, but I’m a little bummed for Eddie Murphy. I had my fingers crossed for him;
  • Who struck you as more joyless: Maggie Gyllenhaal or Ben Affleck?
  • Oh holy crap! Baldy is Jack Nicholson! I wondered why they kept cutting back to that guy;
  • I like Wes Anderson. The American Express campaign amuses me;
  • Milena Canonero somehow managed to pull off that weird Col. Sanders thing;
  • Tom Cruise. Ptooie. (Is that how you spell spitting? That man makes me want to spit.)
  • Oooh! Ellen’s white suit! Now we’re talking;
  • Oh, I heart Robert Downey, Jr. And sober? That man’s hot. The gray hair works for him. He was always cute — I have a mortifying soft spot for Heart and Souls — but now? Damn;
  • Abhay, Dave and Ivan are blogging the Oscars over on the NYC Mech board. I’m not yet finished reading the first page, but thus far I disagree with Abhay on EVERYTHING, which is peculiar, as I have it in my mind that we generally agree. Apparently? Not so much;
  • I suspect this is an unpopular opinion, but I really like the weird shadow dance troupe;
  • Oh, I love when they Brill cream Clooney’s hair! Le sigh;
  • Jennifer Hudson won. Yipee. I mean… I’m sure she’s lovely. But. Still;
  • Wow. I forgot how young Clint Eastwood used to be;
  • Is that Celine Dion? Hellooooo fast-forward;
  • Eastwood speaks Italian?? Oh, damn;
  • “Volver”-ine…? That’s awful;
  • Maybe Dunst’s dress isn’t as bad as I thought… no… no, it is;
  • WOW! But Jennifer Lopez’s dress is much, much worse! Neat!
  • The Dreamgirls warble off… Where’s that remote?
  • Wait, who’s the Dreamgirl that’s not Beyonce or Hudson?  She’s gorgeous!
  • HA HA HA HA Tivo switched over to Scrubs.  I missed the end of the Oscars.
  • Goodnight.

And I Am Tellin’ You…


Jennifer Hudson may be a very lovely person — no doubt she’s talented — but I *hate* that song more than I can possibly express without hand gestures and sound effects.

NYCC: Viz Panel Announcements


“For people looking for manga that won’t break their budget, check out ‘Portus.’ It’s a one-shot horror manga that revolves around an evil video game. Think ‘The Ring’ meets ‘Stay Alive,’ but in manga form.”

Remember that Viz project I was on about that I couldn’t name until it was officially announced? Voilà! Portus. I wrapped up my part last month; I’m not sure what the release date is but I’ll post it as soon as I know.

The editor is/was Kit Fox, who took over Sensual Phrase duties from Eric Searleman for our last few volumes. He’s a peach. And yes, I’m told that’s his real name. Lucky bastard.

What News?

  • First: big day for Fraction yesterday — Punisher War Journal #4 and Iron Fist #3 dropped. So proud! Look at him go. He’s in LA doing some research right now, probably at this moment having sushi with Matt Gagnon.
  • Back before Fraction and I got married, we had imaginary pets: a cat named Pablo and two dogs — Captain Applejack and Pamplemousse. Pamplemousse was meant to be a little French Bulldog. Fast forward a few years — or page back a couple of blog entries — we’ve taken in this abandoned pup and we’re fostering him for a bit. We might keep him.. I dunno. No promises. Anyway. As a name, “New Dog” wasn’t quite doing it for me so at Fraction’s suggestion I toyed with calling him Pamplemousse. (The new dog, not Fraction.) It wasn’t right. Mousse was closer — my mom used to have this friend (who, incidentally, looked exactly like Joe Strummer) they called Moosey because he enjoyed running into things with his head. Something about that suits this bulldozer of a dog. But… part of me still wanted to save Pamplemousse for a Frenchie. Then Hillary suggested Claude. Claude! It sounds like clod. It’s perfect. The dog’s name is Claude. Thank you, Hillary.
  • When I got up this morning — at 7:15 am, we’re making progress — I discovered that Claude had chewed up my recently-completed knit headband/neckwarmer.
  • Claude went for neutering today. (On the way there, I told him he was going because he chewed up my knitting and my WHAT NOT TO WEAR PART TWO book.) I spoke to the nurse around 4pm. He did great, he’s not messing with the wound — they expect it to heal up nicely. He’ll come home Monday and he can start going to K-9 Club on Tuesday. That should make my life easier. At that point it’s just a matter of how he effects my stress level. If he’s too much for me, I’ll call Wayside Waifs and see if I can work out some kind of deal with them to try and find him a home, with the understanding that if they can’t, I’ll take him back rather than have him put down.
  • For your viewing pleasure: pretty shoes.
  • Rachel Stuart-Haas is on Flickr. Not only is she a delightful human being, but she’s mad talented. I love her work. LOVE. I have two paintings and, really and truly, they are my most prized possessions after, like, my laptop and my Mason-Pearson hairbrush. If I had unlimited funds, my house would be a gallery for her work that happened to include our furniture.
  • Phat Tuesday


    Somewhat better today, thanks. Got up with the dogs at 4:45 am and again at 6:30 am, but went back to bed after each and managed to sleep until 8:30 am. The 4:45 wake-up didn’t actually irritate me because it turned out the new guy (who I’m toying with calling either Mousse or Claude, more on those later) really had to go. Fair enough. The 6:30 wake up… that one was just because they wanted me to come downstairs.

    Separation anxiety reared its ugly head when K-9 Club came to pick up Captain Applejack: crying, scratching, freaking out and a weird sound that was a combination of a wail, a growl and that sound that pigeons make. Bizarre. We took a long walk while Applejack was gone and that served to calm him down a bit. He came back home and fell asleep while I caught up on the phone with Fraction.

    While I was composing this, K-9 Club dropped Applejack back off and the reunion resulted in more wailing. This version celebratory, I think.

    Anyway. I’m off to lunch with my friend Jessi and her baby girl Sophie. More later.

    In the meantime, here are a couple of links to check out:

    Peter O’Donnell talks about creating one of my all time favorite pulp heroines — Modesty Blaise via Journalista; and

    Jen Hess’ new food pr0n site, Last Night’s Dinner.

    Respect My Bag of Rocks


    I’m not usually this kind of blogger, but I feel the need to admit defeat and scream into the void right now.

    I’m tapped out. I’m stressed. Fraction’s in LA and I have the house to myself right now. Ordinarily, this is a Good Thing. I’m an only child. I love, adore and admire my husband, but I also cherish my alone time. I’m seldom bothered by his business travel, which is good I guess, as he’s been away for three months at a stretch before. Frankly, I’ve been looking forward to this. I feel cheated that I’m having anxiety dreams and my shoulders haven’t dropped at all. I wish I could have sent the dogs and cats (and the dining room and the kitchen and the spare room) to California with him.

    The dogs, in particular, are not helping. They got me up at 6:30 this morning. The new guy? I like him all right, but he whines and drools and farts and nips at me and chews things and knocks things over and NEEDS ATTENTION NEEDS ATTENTION NEEDS ATTENTION. At one point last night I just started crying it was making me so crazy. (Niles happened to call and talked me down, bless him.) It’s not the dog’s fault. He’s bright; he corrects very well and he minds my commands better than Applejack — or more quickly anyway. He gets off the stairs when I snap my fingers, comes back in when I whistle, he even sits reliably on command now. In Cesar’s terms, he clearly respects me as the pack leader. He does want to please me. …Desperately. He’ll have his manners down soon, but in the meantime I’m feeling sorry for myself. I resent the people who abandoned him. I want to beat them with a bag of rocks. On the one hand, I chose this and I know it’s the right thing to do. On the other hand, why is this dog my problem? We just got Applejack out of puppyhood! I wasn’t sitting around missing the days of constant correction and chewed shoes, you know? And books! The new dog chews books! WTF?! That’s a capital crime.

    Also? The fucking dog needs a name. Clearly, Valentine isn’t going to stick. And yes, “New Dog” is amusing, but it’s a way to talk about the dog, not to him. Isn’t it?

    Whatever his name is, he goes to the doctor on Thursday to get neutered and he’ll stay at the vet’s over the weekend so that he doesn’t come home and rip out his stitches wrestling with Applejack. I’m looking forward to it like it was a spa vacation. I even entertained the notion of boarding Applejack at Puppy’s Playpen to give myself a canine-free couple of days. Would that make me a bad mother, I wonder. It doesn’t matter – I won’t actually do it as Applejack is also the designated house and mom protector. I don’t think it would be wise to board him.

    I’m behind on a deadline and it’s so… frustrating. Embarrassing. If I’m being honest, I know this is the crux of my attitude problem. I keep getting in my own way and I know it, but I can’t seem to figure out the way around. (Paid work is all caught up. I assure you, no one is waiting on their manga. I’m not a complete idiot. But commitments are commitments and when I’m not meeting mine I feel like shit.) I think that’s probably the root of my anger right now — fear. Ain’t that always the way.

    Also — and this could really keep me up at night — I’m not sure which I hate more: the “So Co and lime” commercials or the “di Saronno on the rocks” commercials. My hate for each is so immense in its own right. How to choose?

    I need to hit the reset button this morning and I’m just not sure how to do it. Oddly enough, writing this is helping.

    I’m thinking about turning off comments for this post. The very point of screaming into the void is that the void doesn’t echo. I’m fine. I’ll be fine. Honestly, I always get like this in February. I hate the cold. It wears on me and my frustration peaks this time of year. I’m sure you have lovely things to say, but my temper is short and I’m afraid I’m just not into living in the solution right now. If anyone reminds me that the sun will come up tomorrow, I might reach for my bag of rocks. Pity me and I’ll make sure they’re pointy.

    The electrician is on his way over and the dogs are going to make his life hell. This should be fun.

    How about this, I’ll leave the comments open, but only so that you can weigh in on the hot “So Co and lime”/”di Saronno on the rocks” debate.

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