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I spent a couple days up in Lewisville with the runt. We didn't do too much, just mostly hung out. He's out of school and has no job at the moment, so his schedule was wide open. Mostly it was going out to eat and video games. It was fun to hang out with him; I should've done it earlier this week. We watched "The A-Team," which had ridiculous action, but exceeded my non-existent expectations.
Today though, has been a fiasco from the start. I go back to Canada tomorrow so I left Lewisville at the crack of dawn to get back to Austin so that I'd have all day to get packed and otherwise organized. When I got back to Austin I noticed that I had a new voicemail on my home phone from Cameron. I wondered, "Why'd he call? To say goodbye or something?" The message: Hey Cody, you forgot your laptop up here.
Aw fucknuts.
I had the laptop power adapter and it's wireless mouse with me in the truck; how had I forgotten the laptop itself? So mere minutes after returning to Austin, I got back in my truck and turned right around back to Dallas. The entire drive back I was kicking myself in the ass. God I swear I am so freaking absent-minded. I don't know what it is. ADD? There's a hole in my brain big enough to sail an aircraft carrier through. All the gingko-biloba and mnemonics in the world won't patch up that hole. Like this weekend, Cameron, Katherine, and I went to this fancy Italian restaurant up there. Something called Mangio's or Mannioto's--I don't know. But it was fancy. Split-level dining room, everything is built out of wood, chandeliers on the ceiling, candles on the tables, etc. I'm like, Wow. Fancy. Good thing I didn't wear jeans today. Sometime during the meal I excuse myself to go to the bathroom. I go in there and notice that . . . all of the toilets are stalls.
At this point a normal human brain would have spoken up: Hey Cody, you're in the ladies' room. Get out quick. But not my brain. Mine's got wires crossed or something. Honestly, my thought process was this: . . . Hmm . . . No urinals. . . . Well, this IS a pretty fancy Italian restaurant. I guess over there in Europe, urinals might be considered tacky or vulgar. Stalls are more discrete, I guess. Hm. This is a pretty classy place. They're really European here." So I go do my business, convinced this is normal. Five minutes later I'm washing my hands that a woman comes in the door behind me. Our eyes meet in the mirror (I don't know which one of us was more confused) and THAT'S when I realize I'm in the ladies room. Honestly, I think there's something wrong with my brain.
So I drove back to Dallas, got my laptop, and turned around again. Instead of 3 hours of driving today, I spent 10. Weeee. On the way back I stopped at the Schlotzsky's in Hillsboro for a late lunch. I was displeased to see that they've discontinued my favorite sandwich, but whatever, they're all pretty similar. While eating my sandwich, I bit my lip, with my canine, hard. I jumped an inch out of my chair. My lip is bleeding, that's how deep of a gouge it is. I keep eating . . . and bite myself again. SAME SPOT. I jerk like someone zapped me. God that hurt. Now every time I take a bite of my sandwich, I leave a spot of blood on the bun. The rim of my cup has blood on it. By now my lip's getting a bit swollen where I bit it, so I try to be more . . . mindful of how I'm chewing. But apparently I was over-thinking it because, BAM! I bit myself a third time in the same damn spot. It hurts worse every time! I jumped up again and nearly cursed out loud. I managed to finish eating my metallic-tasting sandwich without further injuring myself. I move on to my chips. The usual. . . . Salt & Vinegar. Normally they're not a problem. Then again, normally I can safely feed myself. One salt-encrusted, vinegar-soaked chip touched my open wound and LIT IT UP. That brought tears to my eyes but since my mouth was full of food, my cry of pain came out only as a moo of pain. That was it. I gave up.
Today has not been my day. I'd prefer to savor my last night here in civilization, but I think it would be wiser to stay home where it's safe (I hope).
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Ha ha ha. It's implausible, but it would be cool if he actually did come to our worksite. I'd be all, "Hey Cameron! Let us worry about the oil, and you worry about the movies! Go make Battle Angel like you said you would! Screw Avatar 2!"
I remember being pleased when I first found out that Avatar did as well as it did at the box-office. I figured that if it flopped, Battle Angel would be still-born. When Av did good, I figured that meant JC could move on to his next project, namely Battle Angel. But it did soooo good that it appears Avatar 2 has been bumped to the front of the line. LAAAAAME. Forget that lame, clichéd, plagarized movie. I want my Battle Angel already!
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Yesterday was hectic. My brother had come into town Friday, leaving Dallas immediately after his last final. We hung out for awhile at my place before meeting up with my sister and her guy to go watch the new Robin Hood movie at the Drafthouse. Even with the aid of the bucket of beer I was pretty underwhelmed by the movie. I kept waiting, wondering, "When is he going to start stealing from the rich and giving to the poor?" I did like the whole 'stolen identity' idea, but that was the only aspect that caught my interest. I guess I still prefer the Bryan Adams/Kevin Costner version. After the movie we tried to find Robin Hood: Men in Tights for rent, but had no success. Both my brother and sister say I've lost weight (not a compliment I was fishing for, but appreciated all the same); according to my sister I'm "less puffy than normal." Ha ha ha.
My brother and I spent most of Saturday waiting for my mom to show up. We farted around at Best Buy, Dragon's Lair, GameStop, and we were just about to go to that steampunk event (Green Steam Circus) when we finally received word from my mom that she was in Austin. By then it was 4 pm.
I'd assumed that the whole reason for her drive up was to make some serious plans with us and essentially begin to circle the wagons, just in case things took a turn for the worst. But it was just like any other time she visits; no real agenda other than to sit around and talk and eat. Took them to EZ's and Amy's for fun Austin-ish foods and then we went to go see Iron Man 2. I was only half present, mostly I was thinking of all the packing and reservations and other crap I had to do. And yeah, I was also selfishly thinking of all the other ways I'd like to be spending my last evening in town. I guess it was good to see everyone, but the poor timing just kept me from relaxing and enjoying their company.
Everyone finally left around midnight, giving me just four hours to pack and prepare before my airport shuttle arrived. And boy, it took every minute to get it all done. But I did pilfer a few moments for me and my brother to crack open the fancy Canadian whiskie I'd bought on my flight down. And I even swung by Jenny's and Beauty's to drop some stuff off and to receive my hamster war-name.

Today finds me once again in Calgary, en-route to the work camp. Just before I'd left my boss had told me that when I came back, I'd be a supervisor rather than a field engineer. Technically that's a step up the food chain, but in reality it just adds the stress of being middle management for the same pay of the field hands. I've often voiced in this journal my reluctance to accept greater engineering responsibilities. I'm not a really confident guy, nor am I enough of a hard-ass to wrangle these young punks they've contracted to do the work. So . . . . it's probably going to be a bit rough, at least at the start. *shrug* I don't know.
Either way, here I go again!
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my weekend back in Austin )

These weekdays are very boring in comparison to the weekend. I leave back to Canada on Thursday morning so in the meantime I’m just trying to keep busy during the day with chores and other ‘responsible’ stuff. Yup, boring.
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Yesterday I hung out with my brother and sister. I took them to the conveyor-belt sushi place on Airport to (mildly) dazzle them. But we got there at 3 in the afternoon and we were the only ones there so the sushi had been doing quite a few laps by that time. Room temperature maki? Bleh. They still enjoyed it though. After that we went to go see "Shutter Island," which turned out to be much better than I expected (I had my doubts since Leonardo DiCaprio was in it). The first half of the movie I was thinking, "This is how the Silent Hill movie should've been. All it needs is fog!" The second half I was thinking, "This is Memento! We're going down the rabbit hole!" Yup, I was quite pleased with it.
After the movie was dinner, then idle chatting time. Everyone headed out at the end of the night.
Oh yeah, I managed to get a comparable laptop yesterday morning. I sprung for one about $100 more than my target, because I impulsively decided I wanted one with webcam capabilities. (Maybe I want to be a camwhore too!) I've been transferring my big computer onto the satellite laptop; it's been taking hours. And that's not even including the mega-database of porn. I'll be leaving most of that behind, I ain't got the patience to do all that downloading. Ha ha ha. Just the basics: anime, music, and cosplay stuff.
random tangent )
Today I've got to do tons of laundry and pack. Right now I'm pretty hungry but I've successfully emptied my pantry, so I don't have anything to eat here. I guess I've got to go eat take-out. Bleh. I'm kinda tired of that stuff. But I need fuel to get everything ready TODAY!
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I spent most of Sunday drafting armor patterns. For the Sechs costume, not the DC one. I need more reference pictures before I get started on the latter, anyways. Pattern drafting is about as much as I can do right now until I've got some money. Heck, even if I had the money, I dunno how I could work the armor, since my new oven is gas-powered and thus too hot for my typical technique. Heh heh. Oh well, I'll figure something out.
Last night I went to Super Happy Fun Monkey Bash (solo). It didn't have as much variety as I remember from the last one but I still laughed till I cried, regardless. The Ass Olympics were the best (worst?) part of the show. Those poor bastards . . .
Oh, before I forget, it appears that the Drafthouse has added later Friday and Saturday night showings for those of you who were interested but couldn't attend on weeknights. (For some reason FB won't let me edit the event now that it's in the 'past'.) I wouldn't mind going again, so long as I wasn't driving.

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cut for size )
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Okay, so the movie I'm going to tonight? My brother bailed. He says because it's supposed to snow tomorrow and he doesn't want to have to drive back through that (but I bet his waifu had a say in the matter). I kinda had a feeling this is how it would turn out.
So! That means I have an extra ticket and Drafthouse rules say: No Refunds. It's short notice, I know, but does anyone wanna come along? 7 PM tonight, we can carpool if it helps.
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I spent most of this weekend sitting on my butt, killing zombies. I'm mostly house-bound at the moment since I need to be watching my money right now. I gotta say, my patience for being poor is starting to wear thin. This has been the most expensive move I've ever done; it's caught me by surprise. Easily over $2000 in extra rent, deposits, fees, bills, and other random 'surprises'. I could really use some overtime to help me get ahead of these bills. I'm just hoping I can get the bulk of it paid off while I'm still under the 'introductory 0% interest' phase of my card; after that the blood-sucking begins. But I shouldn't be all 'the glass is half empty'. After all, while I was in Louisiana last week my boss called me to let me know that I'd be getting a 1.5% pay raise, in recognition of my willingness to work out-of-town for long periods, like in Dallas. I almost chuckled; if they knew how many problems Dallas created for me, I think I'd be getting more than 1.5%. But that's not really relevant. Even though the extra money is almost insignificant, it's the thought that counts, considering that our company has been under a pay-raise and hiring freeze ever since the financial meltdown. The fact that I'm getting anything at all is a significant gesture.
I didn't intend to talk about money. It just came out. Anyways, I went up to Dallas on Saturday to pick up some furniture from my brother. I figured $45 in gas was worth getting a free drafting table and sofa. But they hadn't actually gotten around to buying their new couch so all I got was the table. That was kinda lame. While I was there, I laid my best Austin sales pitch on him to try and talk him into visiting me once in a while. I told him about the upcoming Sherwood Faire and Super Happy Fun Monkey Bash (which I'm trying to gather a group for). While cruising the Drafthouse website, we accidentally clicked on the clip below and impulsively bought tickets for that one-night-only showing. So I guess we're doing that on Wednesday night! Ha ha ha. It looks retarded and fun.

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The trailer is finally online! I saw it when I went to go see "Where the Wild Things Are." The opening scene makes me laugh. I'll go see the movie just for that.

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I go on break tonight. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday back home in Austin. Tomorrow I'll be going to see Liz's mom to talk and hopefully get some new perspective or ideas about us. I don't see much point in talking to her dad; I expect his opinions would agree with mine but I need new ideas, not more of the same stuff I've already come up with. Been there, done that.
Liz will be getting back in to Austin midnight Friday. I hope she's not too tired from her vacation. I'd really like to have a talk with her Saturday. I know I said I'd wait till we went to the therapist, but at the same time I don't want her to be completely caught by surprise when we go. So I want to at least bring up the topic so that she'll have a couple weeks to mull over what I've been thinking and then hopefully we can make some progress when we actually go to the therapist's.
That couple's book has been insightful. Sadly, I think I've learned more from that one little book than all of our therapy sessions. I have to remind myself not to put too much hope into what I've learned. Yes, the tips about communication show me that sometimes I accidentally express myself in ways that handicap our discussions. But, improving our communication is just the start. If we can't find a mutually agreeable way to move forward, then it's moot.
So yeah, Friday I talk with her mom, Saturday I talk with Liz, and Sunday I'll probably spend on damage control from the aftermath of our Saturday talk. Not really the kind of weekend I would like to have, but it's difficult to relax or think about much else while I have this occupying my thoughts. My mom, brother, and sister had been planning to come to Austin to jointly celebrate mine/my sister's birthday this month, but I called them up and told them I needed to set this weekend aside for Liz and I. That also means no going to see District 9 or Ponyo. Well, that stuff can wait.
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How many slow-motion sequences can one Chevrolet commercial have?

Two hours and forty minutes worth.

Is it any wonder they went bankrupt?

more Transformers whining )
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I have to go watch Transformers tonight. Against my will. For some unknown reason (I think it's Shia LeDouche), my sister keeps demanding that we go watch it. And since I'll be heading out of town soon, I feel obligated to spend some time with her. Why does it have to be Transformers though? I only barely watched the first movie for the first time a couple weeks ago, on accident. All I got out of it was a lot of CG metal smashing and crashing and exploding, with a couple of eye-candy actors running around like Lilliputians beneath it all. Liz is smart; she's opting out of this get-together. So it'll just be me, my sis, and her boyfriend.
Oh well.
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I had a pretty quiet Memorial Day weekend. I'd expected to finish my Wybie cosplay, but I forgot some xpvc at the hotel so I couldn't work on my mask. And since I botched part of the coat pattern, I had to hand-sew all the stripes on. I've found that I stitch an inch every three minutes and there was 280 inches to sew. That equals an assload of sewing. Good thing it was a three day weekend.
more Wybie cosplay rambling )
I think I'll spend my Friday finishing up the costume. Then as a reward, I'll go watch "UP". I would invite people to go with (it'd be fun), but I don't have a vehicle that's carpool-worthy.
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I was able to go home to Austin this past weekend FOR FOUR WHOLE DAYS. It was sweeeet. Friday night I hung out with my Austin cosplay pals and collaborated with them on their MKR cosplay. I'm curious to see how it turns out. I managed to resist their attempts to lure me into that group, though they managed to ensnare Stephanie, sadly. If only the Saint Seiya armor designs weren't so bishie and over-the-top elaborate, I'd consider it. Oh well.
Back in Dallas, I spend my evenings in one of two ways. I'm trying to finish the gunblade commission by the end of the month because I'm getting impatient to start on my own cosplay. Also, I can't remember what deadline I quoted in the first place, so I suspect it's drawing close in any case. I think this experiment of using MDF has been successful. Sure, working with wood adds an extra step of sealing and sanding, but it's got the bonus of added strength and durability.
On other nights I hang out at Cameron's place. The other night we watched "Let the Right One In". I don't know if I agree with the claim that it's the "Best Vampire Movie Ever," but it was definitely unique. It was refreshing to see vampires not as seductive, semi-magical supermodels, but as a disturbing abomination of a human.
Next week we'll be going to Medieval Times for Cameron's birthday. I'm looking forward to that. Meat on a stick and flagons of booze! Woo!
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The weekend got off to an unexpectedly good start. Our drilling rig had major mechanical problems early Friday morning that shut us down for the whole day. While I waited for news about the repairs, I killed some time by going to watch "Slumdog Millionaire." I was disappointed with the movie; I thought it could've been much better, given it's unique premise. What could've been a gritty, unflinching look at poverty and struggle was instead a hokey, de-clawed, PG-rated fairy tale. The picture-perfect happy ending further ruined it for me. I'm surprised it won ANY Oscars.
Anyways, later that evening I headed up to Denton to hang out with Cindi, Crystal, and friends. We went out for pizza and bowling. While there, I was a stereotypical white guy. I could bowl well enough, but I couldn't dance for crap. Afterwards we went back to the house and watched "Repo! The Genetic Opera." Frankly, I'm not sure what that "movie" was. Was it the opera aspect that made it incomprehensible to me, was it so awful that it was good? I don't know. But I do know that by the time the movie was over, my eyeballs felt like they had been violated.
Saturday morning I received word that the drill rig had been towed to a mechanic's, but couldn't be looked at until Monday, which meant that I was free for the weekend. Weeee! So I hopped in my truck and raced back to Austin. Since we'd been talking about Venture Brothers the night before, for most of the drive back I was thinking of how I could do a Monarch cosplay. It's very tempting, as I already have black tights and enough fiberglass materials lying around to do the armor. I'm still undecided though. As I pulled into Austin around 11:30, I gave Liz a call to tell her I was coming home. Her reply was a blunt, "Well, FUCK."
. . . Ha ha ha. Not quite the response I was expecting. No, "Yay!" or "That's great!" Just, "Well fuck." Ha ha. Apparently she'd originally thought that I wouldn't be arriving till that evening and now she had just a matter of minutes to get ready before I showed up. Although she claimed that both she and the apartment were a mess, both were a welcome sight when I arrived.
That evening we headed to Cat's birthday gathering. The venue this time around was the Salt Lick, a barbecue place of legendary status down in Driftwood. The drive turned out to be a lot farther than I expected. Just as I was on the verge of stopping and asking for directions, we arrived. Holy crap, that place was huge. The place had cops directing traffic, there were that many people. It was a 40-minute wait to get in and then another 40-minutes for the food to arrive, but when it did, everyone turned into a hardcore carnivore. OMG, delicious beef and pork and turkey and other species that I didn't bother to identify before consuming. It seemed appropriate to call it a Texan Thanksgiving. Sooo much meat.
We waddled out of there about an hour or two later and re-convened at Cat's where we had some drinks and talked and watched some YouTube and (crazy-ass) Tyra. Of course we talked cosplay too. Jenny and Beauty and Cat are doing a Rayearth group and drafted me into their service, helping out with the props and armor and such. That should be fun to work on. Also, Jenny let slip that she's planning to do an Other Mother (black dress version) cosplay and as soon as I heard that I claimed Wybie for myself. And just like that, my cosplay dance card has been filled up in one fell swoop. Yay. That's good.
Anyways, I'm going to cut this post short. I have to pee.
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*kinda wants to cosplay Wibye*

C'mon, he's got a cool mask!

And a firefighter's coat!
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I know everybody's got plans this evening to celebrate President's Day so I'll be flying solo tonight I guess.
I think I'll be headed back to my hotel room to re-arrange the furniture and turn it into the best cosplay workshop that I can. Though, last time I did that, the hotel management took away my shower curtain and coffee table for "repeated misuse." Whatever. Now that I'm on to their house-keeping schedule, it won't happen again.
Tomorrow I believe Camerond and Katherine and I are going to go see Coraline in 3-D and probably go to I <3 Sushi afterwards. Yum!
So, to everyone who's gonna be getting it on tonight with that special someone or something, don't forget to take a moment to look at a penny and give thanks. Lincoln hooks people up.
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Ten Best Movies of the Year (according to the A/V Club):

1. Wall-E: Yeah, of course.

2. Rachel Getting Married: *shrug* Eh, I can't really take Anne Hathaway seriously.

3. Synecdoche: It sounded interesting, I might watch it.

4. The Dark Knight: Who _hasn't_ seen this yet?

5-7: Never heard of them.

8. Man on Wire: About the daredevil guy. I wonder if this is still playing anywhere.

9. Wendy and Lucy: Yeah, this one sounded interesting too.

10. Let the Right One In: I think this one's still playing. And if I'm gonna watch a vampire movie, it's either this one or I get drunk and go watch Twilight for the laughs.

Bonus. The Fall: This one has an odd premise. A parapalegic befriends a child to force her help with his suicide. Whoa.

I also wanna see Slumdog Millionaire, even though it wasn't on the list.

So much to watch, so little time! But definitely I'm going to go see something tomorrow. I've been packing and unpacking all weekend. I need something fun to do. And Christmas shopping ain't it.
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I got Battle Angel Alita: Last Order #10 today! Wooooooo! Yes! I was reading some of it while I was driving back to work from lunch. I know I'm not supposed to do that, but I had to get at least a little nibble to whet my appetite. Man, I can't wait to read it this evening. I F-ing love this series. I've been reading it for 14 years now. That's how awesome it is. Junk like Bleach, FMA, KH, Inuyasha, comes and goes, but awesome shit like this stays! James Cameron's making a movie of Battle Angel! Suck that! (Don't mention the DBZ movie to me; that's an abomination.)
Sorry if I'm talking trash about your favorite series, I'm kinda spazzing out here.

Happy thing #6: See above.

P.S. It sucks that I have to go back to work this afternoon. Maybe I should call in sick . . . Food poisoning or something like that, yeah.

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