Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Creig in Atascadero (Right Where I Belong)

Cassandra did indeed fly out to Colorado, we did indeed drive 1,150 miles home. We do indeed have a lovely little apartment near the library. I kept Jaylyn home Monday to reconnect and to help move. It was a great choice.

You know, I missed them in a way you simply cannot understand until you've pledged your life to somebody else. My life isn't my own any more, when living my life without the people I'm living it for is unbearable.

There was a time (when I was seventeen and had the whole world figured out) I never would have believed this could happen to me. A time I believed I'd never live for anybody but me. Now I can't can imagine a life without my wife and daughter; I've lived it, and it's horrible.

I'm glad to be back in Atascadero. I got to kiss my parents, hug Blaine, and I'm gonna see my brother and his wife Saturday. It's wonderful to make plans with my family. I haven't even seen my brother yet, but I know I get to see him in a couple days. I'm relaxed about it. I'm sort of basking in just knowing I've got plans to see him. It's a fantastic feeling.

I met a lot of really fun, wonderful, high-quality people in Colorado. I'll miss them. I got to work for a really cool company that provides a really cool, really high-quality service and help them run at full capacity on day one of resuming business. I'll miss the people, I'll miss the company, I'll miss the job.

I'm here in Atascadero again, with my family and friends, looking forward to the next steps, the next chapter, in my family's life. And it's with that in mind that I'm closing down this blog. It was a huge help to keep my head on straight (well, most of the time), and a fun way to communicate without spamming people who didn't want it.

Visit my regular website instead. I'll keep updating that one.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

A Question Answered

My gross housemates, it turns out, are from Vietnam. I know this because the landlord isn't here. He's on vacation to Vietnam. And unable to give my my security deposit. Damn him for not communicating properly.

Anyway, here's some boxes. I have the best to/from labels ever, and also the coolest fragile sticker.

And also, this all implies I'm getting the hell out of here tomorrow! Whoot!

My Last Night in This Horrible House

Last night, I decided I'd make myself some eggs. I went in search for a skillet, but they were both in use.

What you're looking at is a skillet with a makeshift lid. On top of that(!) is another skillet with a plate acting as a lid.

What in the hell is going on here?

I decided to inspect.

I hold these bastards in contempt. Those are golf ball sized lumpy nuggets of some kind of mystery meat in sauce. They're also stone cold. Why they had to stay in a skillet, why they needed both skillets, is beyond me. Plus, it's beyond them to explain since they don't have very much English.

I hate living here. I ended up eating some packaged spare food I had squirreled away for such an occasion.

(As an aside, I've got another box packed, and I'd have a third packed if only I could do dishes. But it seems these morons need every inch of the kitchen while cooking, so doing dishes isn't an option right now. Filthy horrible morons.)

On a positive note, I took a few pictures that show Pro DPI off a bit. This here is why I moved to Colorado at all, and I thought you'd like to see.

The 17-inch iMac I use for my daily tasks. Also, my coffee cup.
The photo department, including Chris. This shows all four of our normal-format printers.
The Dusts. They can print up to 30 inches wide and on a variety of specialty papers. 

The mounting department, including Shawn and Alicia.
The press. It was broken, which is why it's open.
I'm missing a photo of the finishing department with Dave and Travis. Once I have it, I'll replace this paragraph with that photo.

I think that's all I've got for now. I'm gonna see if I can do dishes, pack this last box up, and get 'em mailed out so packing the car'll be easier tomorrow. 

That's right: tomorrow, after work, I pick Cassandra up from the airport, and Saturday, we start driving home. Excellent.

Me with an empty closet and full boxes. Hell yeah.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

It's Official. How Official? THIS Official!

You see that? That's a big box packed full of clothes, a towel, and a French press.¹ It's addressed to me, heading to Atascadero. It's in the back of my car, and I'm gonna eat dinner, then go put postage on it.

I might be able to do a whole second box, tonight, too. My room empties out, and rather than filling me with emptiness, it fills me with excitement. All I gotta do is get through this week, and I'm home.

Also, fantastic news, we got the perfect couches for our house. Cassandra and I have been looking at this style couch for a few years now, and not one but two popped up on Craigslist. Actually, it's one ad for a couch and loveseat. We got both.

Here's the ad; oh, and the photo is the one from the ad, too:
Brand New!!!!! Nice little micro fiber couch and loveseat set for sale. microfiber construction, tan color, and wooden legs .... The couch is in the picture, the love seat is still boxed up. Everything is brand new. The set is compact, which is nice because it fits great in smaller rooms.

Yes. Perfect. I want to go home and nest.

Or maybe not nest. Maybe drink, instead. Fortunately, we've got an awesome little liquor cabinet in the counter.

No liquor yet, though. I s'pose that's ok because I'm not there yet, either, and I have booze.

Was talking to Cassandra while I shot this picture.

Alright, well, I guess that's that. Cassandra's driving the couches to our new house as I type this. Pretty heady stuff. I envy me. Except I have to do laundry, and it stinks to high heaven outside my door. Oh, well. Friday, and I can burn the place down and murder all the occupants.²
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
1: I regret not taking a photo of the press. I got it for $2.99 at the local goodwill. It just happens to be a Bodum Bistro Nouveau, which if you buy it new from the website, is $25. Anyone want a very nice, gently used French press for $10? I might be able to hook you up. 
2: I wont actually murder anybody or burn it down. But I will think about it in the privacy of my weird little mind. And there's no thought police yet, right?

Saturday, October 9, 2010

One More Week!

I'm counting the days.

Today is Saturday. Friday's my last day at work. That same Friday, Cassandra flies in. Saturday, Cassandra and I begin the drive back to San Luis Obispo.

I'm not counting days, I'm counting hours.

Oh, and Cassandra secured an apartment for us! It's right near the Atascadero library. And while small, we're creative and will be using the might of Ikea and the Container Store to make things work well.

Where I live now. In a week.

For all of that, there's a lot I'll miss about Denver. I like that it's a big city, yet traffic is only horrible at rush hour. It feels like regardless of where I'm at or where I'm going, I'm really not that far away.

Then there's the people. Criminy. I am privileged to work with some of the highest quality, most interesting, lovely people in the world. I'm not going to get specific for fear of forgetting. Suffice it to say they're smart, funny, fun, and simply high quality people. It'll be hard to walk away from them. I've never enjoyed a group of people like this ever before. You'll be missed and regretted.

Some of those wonderful people
Speaking of good people, Friday night, I went out with most of them. We enjoyed a lot of beer and appetizer food and the worst margarita of all time. Then a smaller group of us went to what might be the worst bar on earth. The small, low, round tables were surrounded with chairs on wheels, upholstered in brown non-leather, and with wheels. The celling had weird cigarette smoke removers. I swear, the place was right out of 1976, and hadn't changed since.

Still, the kareoke was a blast. I did the Joey Ramone version of What a Wonderful World, then later, Alice Cooper's Be My Lover. Dave and I spent the rest of the night harassing singers, yelling and cheering, and generally having a rowdy good time.

Today, Saturday, I did a few errands. Went to Kinko's FedEx Office to scan my ID, and since there was a haircutting place right there, got my hair cut.

New haircut, same as the old haircut.

This photo was taken at Lowes, where I got a very cheap curtain rod. It's called a cafe rod, and the three brackets, six screws, and up to 84-inch rod was less than $5 after tax. I used it to finally make my curtains hang right. I could have left the string between two nails version, but I have this "leave it better than you found it" policy. So even though my house is an unholy dump and the kitchen poisonous, I couldn't put up badass curtains my wife made, and leave the stupid string.

Not perfect, of course, but I found the $5 kit just after I'd decided to get brackets and a stick of conduit. I'm spending this evening working on laundry, general cleaning, and enjoying my straight, properly hung curtains. And browsing

Monday, October 4, 2010

I'm Sorry. I'm a Little Broken.

It's unbelievable how much of my identity is tied up in all of you. What am I if not Cassandra's husband; Jaylyn's father; my parents' son; Chris and Renee's brother; Christopher, Blaine, and Rebecca's friend?

It turns out if I'm not those, I'm nothing. And that's where my feeling of nothing comes from. I don't feel connected to anything or any one any more. I feel cut adrift, disconnected, apart. 

I've got no meaningful relationships here. I've got relationships I actively avoid here at home. I've got nobody to share discovery with, nobody to do something with. Nothing's fun without somebody to share it with.

I eat frozen, tasteless food. I go to the gym. I go to work. I watch movies. I've got no connections.

I feel broken.

I know it wont last forever, but that knowledge does me zero good right now.

Let me explain what making a sandwich is like for me. It'll make sense in a minute, I promise.

Because the kitchen is filthy, I have to get one of my cutting boards. The big one is best, the other two don't give me enough room to work. I take the bread out while I'm in my room and put it on the board. I put my knife on the board, too, and go to the kitchen.

I wont put any of my stuff directly on the counter because it's disgusting. It grosses me out, and I feel like that's really saying something. About half the cutting board is for the bread, the other half is for cutting tomato and avocado and cheese. I have to do each item individually then put it away for fear of it coming into contact with the grime weird oiliness that coats every surface.

Once done, I bring everything back into my room. Typically, the knife goes into one of my pint glasses filled with water. I'll wash that stuff later on. The cutting board goes onto my desk, the only clean place in the whole house to eat. I check email, read Daring Fireball, remember I'm thirsty and head back to get some cranberry juice.

Along the way, I might meet my black-toothed housemate who's got far more conviction than education. Or I might meet one of my Asian ESL housemates who are responsible for the house being a disgusting smelly heap, and I am polite because murder is generally punishable by imprisonment.

Each and every part of my life feels like that right now. At best, empty relationships; at worst, contempt. Even making a simple sandwich requires planning and logistics.

I've got nobody to share it with. I've got nothing to look forward to. No one wants me. There isn't a moment of relief from this horrible crap, and I'm shriveling up. I'm toughening up, growing smaller and smaller, trying to protect the core that's me, defending myself against every goddamn minute of the day and night. And I'm obviously doing a poor job of it.

I owe everybody who loves me an apology. I'm so sorry. Hardship doesn't give me permission to be insufferable or insane. It should be an opportunity to grow strong, and I'm not taking it.

I'm sorry. I'll get better.

No Everyone

No Everyone