The weekly round-up: A misleadingly titled blog post on many levels

Where are we at, how are we doing?

I’m doing, meh, I’m alright. Summer is properly here (it actually hit 30° C here briefly yesterday), and as nice as it is, I am still not a fan. We did a lot of various chores around the house and yard, which was tiring but worth it.

Mowing the lawn with one of these babies is a special kind of workout. Especially when you have a lumpy, rock-strewn lawn thanks to some earthworks, and four or five different breeds of grass, one of which I think is actually wool.

Writing is slow, but I’m not getting super depressed about it. Current story is shaping up to be a neat one, and the yard work gave me some time and oxygen to think about it.

I just posted up Episode 12 of Grendel’s Grief, which has been interesting to put in podcast format but mostly painful. Recording and hearing my own voice, clearly not my thing. Oh well. If you want story, that’s where it is. I might post up something else from the anthology in text form sometime but things are slow right now.

We’re trying to train our bunnies, Blackie and Snowflake, with … varied success at the eight-day mark. Snowflake is getting better, while Blackie seems to be consistently feral. Hopefully she’ll come around soon. I’ve talked to a variety of experienced bunny-owners and bunny-rescuers, and they all seem to have had the same sort of experience I did with bunnies up until these latest ones: that they’re cute and cuddly and basically fine from day one. Well, not these ones. I don’t know what the fucking pet shop did with them before we bought them, but Christ.

We’re watching Jupiter’s Legacy on Netflix, which is a quite interesting show. A bit like Watchmen meets The Umbrella Academy. We’re also re-watching the Harry Potter movies on DVD. I know the author turned out to be a bit of a sore point for the liberal netizenry in general, but oh well.

For this and more lukewarm takes, follow Edpool on Twitter. He doesn’t really care about movies.

This weekend is going to be a bust, at least Saturday we are spending at the in-laws performing a long-overdue empty-out of the farm sheds in preparation for finally repairing them. Gonna be a day. I’ll try to get some pictures but can’t promise anything because I will be depending on people with functioning cameras. My phone has been rooted for some time.

It’s my birthday on Monday. My parents were good enough to wire me some cash, so I guess it’s fair to say my birthday present this year was a month of not having to worry about having zero money. Which is a constant source of depression and rage. Like Mordeth and the Dark One, those two poisons tend to lock themselves off and feed on one another unless one gets the upper hand for a time. Still, we have enough money to pay bills, buy food, and go out to dinner a couple of times, for mother’s day and my birthday respectively. So that’s deeply and humbly appreciated.

I mean … I’m a very grateful and extremely fortunate Xennial, and clearly I just need to work harder. Like they did.

That’s about it. Oh! Because I promised I’d make a post, let’s throw it open to the readers (all … three of you? Yeah). What’s new with you? I know something’s new with Aaron because he sent me some pics. Which I will place in the comments.

About Hatboy

I’m not often driven to introspection or reflection, but the question does come up sometimes. The big question. So big, there’s just no containing it within the puny boundaries of a single set of punctuationary bookends. Who are these mysterious and unsung heroes of obscurity and shadow? What is their origin story? Do they have a prequel trilogy? What are their secret identities? What are their public identities, for that matter? What are their powers? Their abilities? Their haunted pasts and troubled futures? Their modus operandi? Where do they live anyway, and when? What do they do for a living? Do they really have these fantastical adventures, or is it a dazzlingly intellectual and overwrought metaphor? Or is it perhaps a smug and post-modern sort of metaphor? Is it a plain stupid metaphor, hedged around with thick wads of plausible deniability, a soap bubble of illusory plot dependent upon readers who don’t dare question it for fear of looking foolish? A flight of fancy, having dozed off in front of the television during an episode of something suitably spaceship-oriented? Do they have a quest, a handler, a mission statement, a department-level development objective in five stages? I am Hatboy. https://hatboy.blog/2013/12/17/metalude-who-are-creepy-and-hatboy/
This entry was posted in Office Posts, Random and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

27 Responses to The weekly round-up: A misleadingly titled blog post on many levels

  1. Hatboy says:

    Here, for your enjoyment, is a little album of What Aaron’s Been Up To.

    In short, he has signed the dotted line and gotten a grand new place for himself and the family! It has an amazing yard (I sure hope he gets a riding mower because using one of the babies I pictured in the main blog post is not going to work, trust me on that).

    And a very nice kitchen and other conveniences…

    And some hunting trophies and creepy American Gothic saw blades worthy of Bar Äijä’s itself…

    Anyway, looking good!

    • Toon says:

      Looks amazing Aaron! Well done.
      Happy Birthday for Monday, Hatboy. Number of points of concern in your post, not the least of which is that mower.

      • Hatboy says:

        The mowing went fine! Emptying the farm sheds and jackhammering up the floor, less easy. But now it’s pizza time!

      • Thanks! Yes we are 4 days from owning it, another month from living in it, but we are SO EXCITED. And stressed and scared about anything going wrong between now and then. And so much does keep going wrong, in cliche fashion. And one of our daughters is, typically, being a big jerk about it, trying to do a bunch of COVID risky things at the last minute despite all our entreaties to wait just one week, just let us get through this, this house is for the rest of our lives and if we lose it we may get no more chances (it’s really that bad out here), please don’t add to our enormous stress…. All ending in temper tantrums when she can’t do the thing she wants, because we have to consent, seeing as how she’s 13 and all that.

        Four more days. Argh!

        Happy birthday, publicly this time, bro! It’s quite an eventful 7 days, from last Friday (COVID shot 2 for me) to this coming Friday (closing on house), with your bday in between!

      • Toon says:

        To Aaron:
        What do they say about having kids? The days are long but the years are short? Equally applicable to both toddlers and teenagers….
        Good luck with your very long next four days….
        To Hatboy:
        I’m still prejudiced against your mower. Surely someone somewhere in Finland cleaned out their shed in spring cleaning and has a decent mower free to a good home? As someone who has watched young Irish build a gardening business without paying a single cent for any of his second hand equipment, that mower makes me wince. Sorry.

      • Hatboy says:

        Oh no, the mower was a conscious choice. I don’t want a polluting fuel-burner when I can do the same job with my own muscles. Admittedly our lawn is subsequently pretty wild, but we’re replanting with clover, cultivating moss, and putting in a lot of berry bushes and fruit trees that will ultimately replace most of the grass and provide us with food.

        And like I say, there are so many hummocks and gulleys and loose rocks in our yard, it would destroy a power mower anyway.

  2. Hatboy says:

    And yes, I did make a Wheel of Time reference in the post. It’s long overdue for a comeback.

  3. Damon says:

    Happy Birthday, first off.
    Sorry about the depression, I can relate, but at least you got some money and food to mask it for a while.
    We keep shrinking our lawn further and further and I am going to sell my gas mower and get a reel mower instead, again. I would rather spend time doing other things than maintaining a useless status symbol, especially after seeing the above graph outlining my relative lack of worth compared to my parents (who don’t really have any money either, but certainly benefited from the pension, 401k, health insurance, stocks, etc. for life that companies were offering 30-40 years ago). I had a couple different reel mowers in the past, a cheapy that needed constant tightening and eventually shook apart and an ancient solid, heavy one that eventually fell apart from being old, but could go through anything if you could get it moving long enough.

    Aaron, the house looks great. The yard will be great for the kids, though I don’t envy mowing it one bit. When I was growing up we lived a block from a creek that ran through the city and spent so much time playing and exploring in the “woods” (I can’t do italics) and trails that surrounded it. How wooded is it there? It looks like you have a neighbor on one side, but just land on the other.
    There seems like plenty of room for a doomsday bunker or parade ground for your militia as well.
    Is it an American thing (or just me?) or do the rest of you look at the pictures and start thinking about what you do with the kitchen and living spaces?

    • aaronthepatriot says:

      You have many questions Mr. Sparkle!

      Yes, the mowing will take a lot of time but I’m already walking for exercise, this will be a bit more enjoyable possibly if I think of it that way.

      The lot is EXTREMELY wooded. There is a massive forest behind the house, extending back for miles and out to either side for miles. Hopefully it will not be developed. It seems, based on the lay of the land, that development there would not be ideal without several steps being taken first, because there’s no road into there and it’s kind of like a forest surrounded by homes.

      As you face the house, the left neighbor is completely hidden by an awesome tree line. On the right side, you can see the neighbor but there is a fence. Most of the yard is in the front, left (from the front) and back so as long as we focus our attention in those directions the privacy will be awesome.

      We’re planning a lot of things for all that land back there, believe you me. A bunker, yeah, maybe. Let’s see who wins in 2024 eh? If it’s looking dicey we may try to get one before the market gets too hot! LOL

      I’m not sure what you mean about “what you do with the kitchen and living spaces” but I can tell you a few things that might be what you’re asking. The kitchen is fully renovated with new appliances, cabinetry, and granite countertops so what we’re doing with that is cooking and baking the hell out of it. LOL

      As for the living spaces, nothing too unconventional. What we’re doing with the bedrooms is probably the most interesting, if it’s even that. My older daughter will have the master bedroom and my younger the larger of the other main level bedrooms. The smaller will become my wife’s office…she will be working from home a lot, though probably not full time like I will.

      In the basement, the parents will sleep with a much greater deal of privacy than we have now. There’s an office down there where we will put our bed, though most of the furniture we use and closet space will have to be outside that room. That will be right next to the major TV and sitting area, which will be in the basement, so that will be really great for parent movie nights and all that jazz. Without disturbing the kids with the TV sounds or anything else that comes later. Hopefully at least.

      Once the girls move out, which may be a while past adulthood or even 4 year college completion (trying to be realistic and welcoming parents), we will probably rearrange, but this is what makes the most sense now. And it’s kind of interesting!

      The basement does have a full bathroom including tub, which actually the Master bedroom lacks (the tub), so it’s kind of perfect. We’re really excited about it.

      Basically the house needs so, so very little. Screening in that covered patio is in order, I believe, and the carpet in the main level bedrooms is a little beat but not urgent for replacement. They REALLY took care of this house, it’s pretty damn nice.

      • Damon says:

        Very excited for you. Fingers crossed it goes through.

        I was referring to the tendency (mine at least) to project ones aesthetics on to an other’s property/belongings and wondering if I was unique in that or if it is shared by other people (on this blog). The kitchen is very nice and looks well built and new, but I see your picture and envision what I would do with it if it were mine. It is not a reflection on you obviously because unless you are buying it furnished none of the stuff in there is yours and I have no idea what color you will paint the walls or how you will arrange the furniture or if you even have furniture.

        Do your parents live with you currently? Or is this your first stab at multi-generational living (pun very much intended).

      • aaronthepatriot says:

        “I was referring to the tendency (mine at least) to project ones aesthetics on to an other’s property/belongings and wondering if I was unique in that or if it is shared by other people (on this blog). The kitchen is very nice and looks well built and new, but I see your picture and envision what I would do with it if it were mine. It is not a reflection on you obviously because unless you are buying it furnished none of the stuff in there is yours and I have no idea what color you will paint the walls or how you will arrange the furniture or if you even have furniture.”

        Oh, I see now. Yeah I don’t work that way but I have come to understand a lot of people do. I mean, we have our stuff and we know where it’s going and what it looks like but aside from what I already wrote it’s probably too much to get into. But the kitchen is so done, so new, it needs nothing. And all the paint is fresh, no need to redo and no interest for now!

        “Do your parents live with you currently? Or is this your first stab at multi-generational living (pun very much intended).”

        It’s funny you asked me that, because upon hearing about this new house purchase my very decrepit mother initially wanted to live with us (instead of the upscale retirement home near my sister) and offered to help out around the house in “payment.” Not that she can, literally, be of ANY help whatsoever in any way. Long story, but she falls all the time and is very weak and slow. She’s where she needs to be, with lots of help around. We are on the verge of our kids becoming independent (no matter where they live) and we have no spoons left to have another child requiring constant attention and care. We did our time!

        I know it sounds harsh but if you knew the details you’d get me, if you don’t.

        But no, we haven’t ever had parents living with us. We’re just aware of what a shit country it is out there so we’re bracing for multi-generational living at least until the girls have partners and want their privacy.

    • Hatboy says:

      Happy Birthday, first off.

      Thanks chief!

      Sorry about the depression, I can relate, but at least you got some money and food to mask it for a while.

      Aye, kinda sad but hey. Money and food are good. The sushi train buffet was lovely as ever.

      We keep shrinking our lawn further and further and I am going to sell my gas mower and get a reel mower instead, again.

      Ooh, I didn’t know it was called a reel mower. New terminology unlocked!

      I would rather spend time doing other things than maintaining a useless status symbol,

      Exactly our thoughts in the Hatboy household. We like the orchard / berry patch / farmer garden thing. I also like the invisible line between our yard and our neighbours’ billiard table of a lawn. I need to get a picture of that sometime.

      especially after seeing the above graph outlining my relative lack of worth compared to my parents (who don’t really have any money either, but certainly benefited from the pension, 401k, health insurance, stocks, etc. for life that companies were offering 30-40 years ago).

      I hear you. My in-laws are far from Boomer types, generations and wealth work differently in former Soviet states. Who knew?

      My parents though, classic Boomers. And I don’t resent them personally, they’ve always been very supportive and caring, and they are stunningly progressive among their contemporaries (my dad gets shit from his friends about being the only liberal voter[1] in the state). I have them to thank for my worldview and all things considered I think it’s a fine one. Of course, it’s hard not to be cynical when I think that when my father was my age, he’d already inherited a business based on a city-central piece of real estate worth millions. And here’s me with my office job and my mortgage and my car payments and my scraping out what bills to pay.

      [1] Well, labour voter. In Australia, like in Rand McNally, the liberal party is neoconservative and hamburgers eat people.

      I had a couple different reel mowers in the past, a cheapy that needed constant tightening and eventually shook apart and an ancient solid, heavy one that eventually fell apart from being old, but could go through anything if you could get it moving long enough.

      I’ve got the second type right now, after the first type shook apart on me. They’re mostly marketed at city folks who have a couple of square metres of lawn to cut.

    • Hatboy says:

      It’s also worth noting, about that graph I posted, that a significant portion of the Millennial wealth is in fact tied up in Mark Zuckerberg. A single and very guillotinable human being.

  4. Damon says:

    I think I am going to quit my job soon. I fucking hate it. I own a duplex and can sell it for double what I paid for it and bank the proceeds after putting money aside for the Capital Gains tax and still walk away with over a years salary in profit. My wife now makes more than I do and we can live off that while I decide what I want to do. Maybe get a part time job for a while.

    • Toon says:

      Do it.

    • aaronthepatriot says:

      Sounds like you’re well positioned to “take this job and shove it” as the song goes from that great movie Office Space. Go for it, man! Pursue what YOU want instead of the paycheck!

      • Damon says:

        It really sucks because I worked really hard to get where I am and it was a very bootstrappy journey (yay, America!). Started as a part-time hourly employee and worked up to a General Manager position over 15 years only to have a new company buy us and marginalize me while offering platitudes. It isn’t the work I hate, it’s the job. If that makes any sense. Toxic work culture, no path to gain standing, lack of empathy, money-driven, reactionary, etc. and I have no power to change it and no one to tell who would even listen (or understand without getting defensive). It is a company wide issue as I have learned from conversations with coworkers throughout our locations and many people are ready to bug out.

        I have never written a resume before and I don’t have a college degree so that makes it scary, but I do have 20 years of real-life work experience and motivation and drive to learn new things.

      • aaronthepatriot says:

        It does make sense, I can understand from my own experience. I’m sure I understand what a toxic work experience is, having been in the Navy on deployment on a submarine….

        You write well, so I’m sure you’ll make a great resume! Just download whatever samples you can online and mercilessly steal the style that works for you.

      • Hatboy says:

        It really sucks because I worked really hard to get where I am and it was a very bootstrappy journey (yay, America!). Started as a part-time hourly employee and worked up to a General Manager position over 15 years only to have a new company buy us and marginalize me while offering platitudes. It isn’t the work I hate, it’s the job. If that makes any sense. Toxic work culture, no path to gain standing, lack of empathy, money-driven, reactionary, etc. and I have no power to change it and no one to tell who would even listen (or understand without getting defensive). It is a company wide issue as I have learned from conversations with coworkers throughout our locations and many people are ready to bug out.

        I have never written a resume before and I don’t have a college degree so that makes it scary, but I do have 20 years of real-life work experience and motivation and drive to learn new things.

        You’ll probably find “20 years experience” to be the only thing you really need to write on a CV. You’re on the other side of the Work Experience Paradox, not a terrible place to be.

        Sucks that this had to happen to your workplace though. Went through a pretty similar thing with my old workplace in ’16. I think your plan to sell up and take a financial buffer-sabbatical is an excellent one. Lord knows it’s what I would do if I had a windfall.

    • Toon says:

      I agree with Aaron. Just back yourself Damon. You have one life. Why spend it somewhere that makes you unhappy?

  5. Damon says:

    stupid reply function won’t let me reply to Aaron about the house from further above.

    When you said “the parents” will sleep downstairs I thought you were talking about your parents not that “you” were the parents in the sentence. Reading comprehension was my best test subject too.

  6. Damon says:

    My coworker just told me he isn’t getting vaccinated because viruses “expire” after two years!

Leave a Reply to aaronthepatriot Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s