mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
I don't know Jim and his wife, Brenda, well. I do know that he is a terrific artist - a cardinal of his creation is framed on our living room wall. He is in his fifties, and rarely without something for his hands to do: stippling pens and parchment, or knitting. Jim has been to nearly every performance I've ever given at Stone Bridge, has always tipped generously, and he and his wife have been kind beyond measure to Michelle and I. Brenda always asks Michelle about the kids, about her projects. 

I found out tonight that Brenda died yesterday. She'd had stents put in a month or so ago, so maybe it was related to that. She wasn't feeling well yesterday, so Jim took her to the doctor who found nothing wrong and sent them home. Jim went to work as usual, Brenda stayed home to rest. He found her when he arrived home from work.

I'm okay. As I said, I don't know them well, and Jim more than Brenda since she spoke to Michelle much more than me. I'm shocked at the suddenness of it, and deeply sorry for Jim. Word from The Crew is that he hasn't slept since 3:00am yesterday, and that someone with access to pharmaceuticals is going to fix that tonight.

We're having a get together at the coffeehouse Thursday night, taking up a collection to help him with their bills and the sudden expenses, and I'll go if I can. Her funeral is Friday. 
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
I don't know Jim and his wife, Brenda, well. I do know that he is a terrific artist - a cardinal of his creation is framed on our living room wall. He is in his fifties, and rarely without something for his hands to do: stippling pens and parchment, or knitting. Jim has been to nearly every performance I've ever given at Stone Bridge, has always tipped generously, and he and his wife have been kind beyond measure to Michelle and I. Brenda always asks Michelle about the kids, about her projects. 

I found out tonight that Brenda died yesterday. She'd had stents put in a month or so ago, so maybe it was related to that. She wasn't feeling well yesterday, so Jim took her to the doctor who found nothing wrong and sent them home. Jim went to work as usual, Brenda stayed home to rest. He found her when he arrived home from work.

I'm okay. As I said, I don't know them well, and Jim more than Brenda since she spoke to Michelle much more than me. I'm shocked at the suddenness of it, and deeply sorry for Jim. Word from The Crew is that he hasn't slept since 3:00am yesterday, and that someone with access to pharmaceuticals is going to fix that tonight.

We're having a get together at the coffeehouse Thursday night, taking up a collection to help him with their bills and the sudden expenses, and I'll go if I can. Her funeral is Friday. 
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
You didn't think I'd pass this one by, did you?

I'm not sad. I'm not especially happy. The freak show is over, folks. His children may now have the opportunity to lead normal lives, and for that I'm glad. I don't have to view the sickness on all the news channels every time he makes an incoherent speech or moonwalks to the screams of girls who weren't even born when being the "King of Pop" actually meant something.

This isn't the interesting part, btw. Death is death: pedestrian, prosaic, Jackson went out on a gurney under a white sheet like everyone else*.

No. The interesting part happens when they crack open the secret vaults and point their LED flashlights and Alternate Light Sources into the guarded corners and discarded bedsheets of his life. Whether we find exoneration for him or vindication for us, that's what's going to be interesting.

Geraldo, would you mind a visit to Neverland? We could really use you, right now, and you can make up for that Al Capone's safe-thing from years back.

Watch EBay, folks. There's gonna be some shit up there real soon, if not already. Got a copy of Thriller on vinyl? Still in the plastic from the record store? You just won the lottery. Remember the scene in A Christmas Charole, where the charwoman and housemaid take Scrooge's belongings to Old Joe, the pawnbroker? "They're still warm," remember that..?

For Sale: the actual coroner's shroud that covered our beloved Michael Jackson, the K of P, as he was helicoptered to the morgue. Urine and sweat stained. Comes with certificate of authenticity, signed by the Los Angeles County Coroner. Starting bid: $1.5 million dollars.

For my part, I'm ready to move on. There's one less pedophile in the world, and I'm okay with that.



* His decomposition, which started visibly several years ago, will happen faster than most, I'm sure, without cosmetics and surgery to hold it at bay.

mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
You didn't think I'd pass this one by, did you?

I'm not sad. I'm not especially happy. The freak show is over, folks. His children may now have the opportunity to lead normal lives, and for that I'm glad. I don't have to view the sickness on all the news channels every time he makes an incoherent speech or moonwalks to the screams of girls who weren't even born when being the "King of Pop" actually meant something.

This isn't the interesting part, btw. Death is death: pedestrian, prosaic, Jackson went out on a gurney under a white sheet like everyone else*.

No. The interesting part happens when they crack open the secret vaults and point their LED flashlights and Alternate Light Sources into the guarded corners and discarded bedsheets of his life. Whether we find exoneration for him or vindication for us, that's what's going to be interesting.

Geraldo, would you mind a visit to Neverland? We could really use you, right now, and you can make up for that Al Capone's safe-thing from years back.

Watch EBay, folks. There's gonna be some shit up there real soon, if not already. Got a copy of Thriller on vinyl? Still in the plastic from the record store? You just won the lottery. Remember the scene in A Christmas Charole, where the charwoman and housemaid take Scrooge's belongings to Old Joe, the pawnbroker? "They're still warm," remember that..?

For Sale: the actual coroner's shroud that covered our beloved Michael Jackson, the K of P, as he was helicoptered to the morgue. Urine and sweat stained. Comes with certificate of authenticity, signed by the Los Angeles County Coroner. Starting bid: $1.5 million dollars.

For my part, I'm ready to move on. There's one less pedophile in the world, and I'm okay with that.



* His decomposition, which started visibly several years ago, will happen faster than most, I'm sure, without cosmetics and surgery to hold it at bay.

mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Michelle has already posted the news, so call this some mourning of my own.

Cut for sad (possible triggers: dying, pets)... )
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Michelle has already posted the news, so call this some mourning of my own.

Cut for sad (possible triggers: dying, pets)... )
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
With all the stressors of the weekend and Monday finally having crested and the kids gone last night, I slept like a baby. By which I mean in the idyllic sense of closed eyes, soft focus, warm blankie sleeping, not the sense of pawing at Michelle's breasts every two hours demanding sustenance. Which isn't to say that doesn't happen from time to time, just not last night.

Tigger has figured out that his companion of the last fifteen years isn't around, and he's become very needy and clingy. It's very sweet and sad, but he sheds horribly and I spent my waking moments vainly attempting to rid my face of cat hairs. Even the dogs are acting odd.

I walked out in the yard as I was leaving for work this morning to find Nafoill's grave littered with dandelions, Katie's handiwork.

There is a whole series of posts about my daughter - hell, I've considered starting a new blog on the subject. Katie's autistic mind knows that she should be sad, so she expresses "sadness" by imitating what she has seen us do, in this case, placing flowers on the grave. She has the beginning point - "Nafoill died" - and the ending point - "I'm sad" - but none of the points in between.

Neither are there any real emotional connections made. She did not feel possessive of Nafoill, and so does not feel his loss in any substantive way. She perceives his going as a fact, and now, the fact stored away, she moves on to other things.  Her one comment about his burial was, "He'll make good dirt." It's amusing, even funny, and even at that moment of great grief Michelle and I laughed out loud. It is indicative of how her mind works, and how disconnected her mind is from her emotions.

I have never posted to this journal specifically on the subject of autism and my daughter, though I've had a post in my head for some time. It will keep, though.
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
With all the stressors of the weekend and Monday finally having crested and the kids gone last night, I slept like a baby. By which I mean in the idyllic sense of closed eyes, soft focus, warm blankie sleeping, not the sense of pawing at Michelle's breasts every two hours demanding sustenance. Which isn't to say that doesn't happen from time to time, just not last night.

Tigger has figured out that his companion of the last fifteen years isn't around, and he's become very needy and clingy. It's very sweet and sad, but he sheds horribly and I spent my waking moments vainly attempting to rid my face of cat hairs. Even the dogs are acting odd.

I walked out in the yard as I was leaving for work this morning to find Nafoill's grave littered with dandelions, Katie's handiwork.

There is a whole series of posts about my daughter - hell, I've considered starting a new blog on the subject. Katie's autistic mind knows that she should be sad, so she expresses "sadness" by imitating what she has seen us do, in this case, placing flowers on the grave. She has the beginning point - "Nafoill died" - and the ending point - "I'm sad" - but none of the points in between.

Neither are there any real emotional connections made. She did not feel possessive of Nafoill, and so does not feel his loss in any substantive way. She perceives his going as a fact, and now, the fact stored away, she moves on to other things.  Her one comment about his burial was, "He'll make good dirt." It's amusing, even funny, and even at that moment of great grief Michelle and I laughed out loud. It is indicative of how her mind works, and how disconnected her mind is from her emotions.

I have never posted to this journal specifically on the subject of autism and my daughter, though I've had a post in my head for some time. It will keep, though.
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Snipped for technical/emotional kvetching... )
On a lighter note:

I am feeling better, though I'm still "off my feed," as we say back home. I eat to feed the machine, but food all goes down heavy and hot. On the bright side, I've lost four pounds in four days. Michelle is still recovering and is now coping with a cluster migraine. Could be a tension headache, too, but when your head hurts that bad it hardly matters why. The kids are in the possession of their grandmother today, so Michelle gets to rest.

Today would have been a good day to work from home.

I've got a proposal in on a promotional video. It won't net me much except experience and a couple-hundred dollars, but that's okay. I can use both.


* at a rate of 4 hours rendering per half-hour of real-time. Say it with me: f-f-f-u-u-u-c-c-c-k-k-k.


mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Snipped for technical/emotional kvetching... )
On a lighter note:

I am feeling better, though I'm still "off my feed," as we say back home. I eat to feed the machine, but food all goes down heavy and hot. On the bright side, I've lost four pounds in four days. Michelle is still recovering and is now coping with a cluster migraine. Could be a tension headache, too, but when your head hurts that bad it hardly matters why. The kids are in the possession of their grandmother today, so Michelle gets to rest.

Today would have been a good day to work from home.

I've got a proposal in on a promotional video. It won't net me much except experience and a couple-hundred dollars, but that's okay. I can use both.


* at a rate of 4 hours rendering per half-hour of real-time. Say it with me: f-f-f-u-u-u-c-c-c-k-k-k.


Well, damn.

Apr. 6th, 2009 12:01 pm
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
We buried Nafoill under the maple tree this morning. Suffering from old age and kidney failure, I took him to the vet for a last look-see, and she agreed there was nothing to do for him but ease his passing.

And so we did. I held him as he left.

Goddamn...I wasn't prepared for the death of one small gray cat to hurt this much.

Well, damn.

Apr. 6th, 2009 12:01 pm
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
We buried Nafoill under the maple tree this morning. Suffering from old age and kidney failure, I took him to the vet for a last look-see, and she agreed there was nothing to do for him but ease his passing.

And so we did. I held him as he left.

Goddamn...I wasn't prepared for the death of one small gray cat to hurt this much.
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
I have been asked if I will attend Jim's funeral. No, I won't. Not because I don't honor Jim, or didn't love him (for as little as I knew him.) I just don't desire to grieve this one in public.

The last time I saw Jim, he was sitting with Mary in my family room, talking about making a web-based sitcom about a guy who worked as a chef during the week and a barbarian character on the weekends.  They say that if you want to be a successful writer, write what you know, and so he did. Or started to, at least.

It never came to fruition. In his own words, he was extremely ADHD. I have no doubt but that it was true. We'd started - a month before - on a demo video for Barbarian Battles.

His dedication to kids and martial arts never flagged though. It was amazing to watch that energy and enthusiasm.
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
I have been asked if I will attend Jim's funeral. No, I won't. Not because I don't honor Jim, or didn't love him (for as little as I knew him.) I just don't desire to grieve this one in public.

The last time I saw Jim, he was sitting with Mary in my family room, talking about making a web-based sitcom about a guy who worked as a chef during the week and a barbarian character on the weekends.  They say that if you want to be a successful writer, write what you know, and so he did. Or started to, at least.

It never came to fruition. In his own words, he was extremely ADHD. I have no doubt but that it was true. We'd started - a month before - on a demo video for Barbarian Battles.

His dedication to kids and martial arts never flagged though. It was amazing to watch that energy and enthusiasm.

Jim Gasser

Mar. 31st, 2009 06:50 am
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
The curse for people like me, it is far easier to feel than to express. It's hard to communicate when it really matters, and I have been unable to deeply talk about Jim's passing beyond relating the bare facts.

I emailed Danny Reardon to let him know. His response was immediate and, like many of us, his heart breaks for the loss. What he said helped me put words to the feelings. With his permission, and with the hope that others may find comfort there was well, I will publish here what he wrote to me:

Courtesy snip )

Jim Gasser

Mar. 31st, 2009 06:50 am
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
The curse for people like me, it is far easier to feel than to express. It's hard to communicate when it really matters, and I have been unable to deeply talk about Jim's passing beyond relating the bare facts.

I emailed Danny Reardon to let him know. His response was immediate and, like many of us, his heart breaks for the loss. What he said helped me put words to the feelings. With his permission, and with the hope that others may find comfort there was well, I will publish here what he wrote to me:

Courtesy snip )
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Carl lived in this neighborhood a bit longer than I have. My family moved here in 1971 when I was five.  I used to go over to his house across the street when I was little and play with one of his many grandsons, Chris. We were friendly, but never friends.

The Ragusa's were Italian. I remember his house, especially the kitchen, being thick with the smell of garlic, oregano, and the homemade wine he use to make from his fruit trees, usually pear. His wife, Therese, was Old Country, and spoke clear, but accented English. She called me "Williams", in spite of my many attempts to correct her. The last time I was at his house as a child - I must have been ten years old - he still walked me to the end of his long driveway to see me safely across the street.

Courtesy snip... )
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Carl lived in this neighborhood a bit longer than I have. My family moved here in 1971 when I was five.  I used to go over to his house across the street when I was little and play with one of his many grandsons, Chris. We were friendly, but never friends.

The Ragusa's were Italian. I remember his house, especially the kitchen, being thick with the smell of garlic, oregano, and the homemade wine he use to make from his fruit trees, usually pear. His wife, Therese, was Old Country, and spoke clear, but accented English. She called me "Williams", in spite of my many attempts to correct her. The last time I was at his house as a child - I must have been ten years old - he still walked me to the end of his long driveway to see me safely across the street.

Courtesy snip... )
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Our across-the-street neighbor, Carl Ragusa, has died.  He had to be ninety years old, at least, living alone after his wife died several years ago. He died with his children around him. The funeral home van just pulled away; we watched them load the gurney with Carl's body on it, draped in a gray blanket.

While I am ambivalent about the man, I am not about what his passing represents.

There's a lot to say, just not right now.
mapsedge: Me at Stone Bridge Coffee House (Default)
Our across-the-street neighbor, Carl Ragusa, has died.  He had to be ninety years old, at least, living alone after his wife died several years ago. He died with his children around him. The funeral home van just pulled away; we watched them load the gurney with Carl's body on it, draped in a gray blanket.

While I am ambivalent about the man, I am not about what his passing represents.

There's a lot to say, just not right now.

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