Because I am still alive, some fast facts!


It has been a busy few weeks, storms and all.

Part of the reason for the busyness has been practical. Wednesday is in town. More to the point, Wednesday is in town for the last time for at least six months. Why? Because we will have specific forms filed immediately after she leaves town, and those forms will lead inexorably to her being back here permanently (and married to me, which makes me a very happy person), but while they're in process the government will not let her return to the country. And they will take six months to process. If we're lucky.) So it's important to us to, among other things, consume every waking minute with each other to its fullest. Which has meant sitting and typing on almost anything non-work-related has fallen by the wayside.

I assume all of you would forgive me for that, of course. Because Dude.

We're feeling very very good about the byzantine process of securing Governmental Approval For American Burns to Marry Canadian White thanks to our lawyer -- the startlingly kickass Virginia "Gini" Judd, esq. (EDIT: The link now works! Yay!) Mlle. Judd is someone we know and trust -- she's the wife of Ferrett Steinmetz, author of Home on the Strange -- she, Ferrett and Weds had a great time hanging out in England before she made it back onto this continent. She's already made a process which seems alien and frightening seem much easier to deal with, and we're excited to have her helping us.

(As a side note -- if you or yours are looking into family law, bankruptcy, immigration issues of any form, or just general civil legal stuff, I heartily recommend her. She Knows Her Stuff.)

A few things have happened. I haven't talked about Vonnegut, and it's likely the statue of limitations for writing a remembrance has passed. So let us just remember that the man was willing to appear as himself in a Rodney Dangerfield movie where he writes a term paper for a student on his own work, which gets an F because "clearly whoever wrote this knows nothing about Kurt Vonnegut." Which at once revealed his opinion of such things, as well as denoted something about the man himself.

More germane to my life, my Microsoft Explorer Thinks We're a Phishing Site experiences have been collected into a Help Desk plotline that was seriously funny. Among other things, it actually featured a Wednesday-Day-Of-The-Week joke that actually made Weds laugh -- and very few of those make Weds laugh these days. (For the record? That's not a challenge. Seriously. I've had enough date puns made about Weds's name that I'm ready to never hear another one. Weds has lived with them.) At the time I wanted to push it, but things were just -- well, see above. But by god, you should go look at it.

Also, I've had some other project just go up on some site. It slips my mind right now, however.

Things are well. Weds is well. Oh, and my car seems to be okay -- some gum-out seems to have fixed it right up.

(One last bout of eBay will be going up in the next day or two, for those who have wondered. But obviously the storm has passed, and thank you all for your generosity and cheer. I hope everyone loves their Stuff.)

I'll try to be around more often than I've been in the past month, though... well. I have her for another nine days, and then just when I can sneak to Canada, and you'll understand that I'm going to miss her, so for now....



Eric + Randy? That's like Reeses Peanut Butter Cups, except it won't make me swell up and di...asdfljkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk

So in order for her to be able to move to the United States, she's not allowed to step foot in the United States for at least six months?

If I hadn't pulled a steady paycheck from the state government, I'd say that's the dumbest thing I've ever heard the government do.

I guess that means I won't be able to meet Wednesday at Baycon. Are you planning on going this year?

And I guess she's not going to ConnectiCon. Or ComicCon in San Diego.

Frakking U.S. govt....

Rob H.

Their reasoning, as I understand it, is to so that both governments know that she's not going to be in here solely for the benefits of living in the United States (or double dipping between Canada and the US). It's been that way for a very long time. On the bright side, when my mother immigrated from Thailand in the 1970's, the wait was at least nine months (probably more waiting by the Thai government). And as I understand it, wait periods vary by country, purposes, desire for asylum, etc. The waiting period varied between men and women too. So it's not as bad as it could have been.

That's why a lot of immigrants wanting to marry and live in the US move here first years before they actually get married, claiming they found someone here and fell in love.

Hey, I thought it was going to be a guest appearance like in Shortpacked (well, not quite like in Shortpacked). I read through without realizing, Eric, take that as you will. Once I did see, I could tell the difference ("Christopher Robin told me what it said, and then I could read it"), but the first time through ...

At this time, it looks like Baycon's a no-go for me this year. Which depresses me, but the money just t'ain't there. Next year, I hope.

"American Burns" and "Canadian White" both sound like, I dunno, drinks or something.

32: Are you saying that the paycheck they're giving you is the dumbest thing they're doing? :-)

Sorry, you left it wide open.

Teph - yeah, I did leave myself open for that. ;)

I was not at all convinced that Wednesday's comic would play well, but I had to do it. I'm glad it made her laugh. I figured it'd probably get an eyeroll...

As I just asked Councelor Judd: OMGWTFBBQ!!! How did I not know that she was working with you guys on this?!?! This is one of those TRULY bizarre context shifts that happens sometimes.

"American Burns" would be some sort of scotch drink, while "Canadian White" would be a mixed drink involving Canada Dry, Grey Goose Vodka, and probably some LaBlatt Blue thrown in at the last moment.

Well, there is that whole Lawyer/Client Confidentiality thing.... ;)

BAH! Counsel/Client confidentiality only applies in court. Do I look like a Fed to you? Lessee.. blue suit? No. Sunglasses? No. Snappy hair cut? Negatory.

NOPE! No Fed here!

Wanker. :-P

And I wasn't claiming any kind of entitlement above. Just stating that it's too damn cool NOT to know!

Eric- nice job on Something Positive, by the way. If it weren't for the note informing me that you wrote it, I would have thought it was done by Milholland himself. You seem to have a bead on those characters.

I'm sure not going to complain. I'd begun to wonder if you were going to respond to my e-mail, but I'll concede that time with your fiance is a bit more important than giving random strangers advice.

Well, there's already a drink called the Bobbie Burns:

2 ounces scotch
3/4 ounce sweet vermouth
1 dash triple sec
1 dash Absinthe (these days, more likely Pernod or Anisette)
Stir over ice, and strain into a chilled cocktail glass.

So obviously the American Burns would just replace the scotch with bourbon. It would taste like a liquorice flavored Manhattan - not my idea of a good time, but good if you like liquorice.

A Canadian White could be 2 oz. Canadian whisky shaken with 1 oz Pernod and 1 oz Triple Sec, poured into a tall glass of crushed ice, and filled with seltzer (Canada Dry if you have it, obviously). The water would turn the Pernod a cloudy off-white, so the color is *kind* of appropriate, and the two drinks would taste very similar, which is cute.

What looks to be the last strip in the S*P guest arc just went up -

I usually end up saying this to Randy, but:

Damn you, Mr. Burns, for making me cry.

One of the best S*P arcs of the year. Great job Mr. Burns.

I've had an account to comment on here for about two -and-a-half years and have only done so maybe five times, but I just read what I assume to be the ending of Eric's guest arc on S*P and I had to comment.

I've been a fan of S*P for some time now and while I always enjoy the acidic humor and generous dollop of sarcasm, the strips that I've always enjoyed the more morose ones. In the history of S*P, the single strip that I always enjoyed the most was the one where Fred wakes up and finds Faye dead. While it is most definitely a sad and depressing strip, the last panel, Fred(who, in my opinion, is by far the strongest of a tremendously strong cast) holding Faye's hand and shedding a tear gave it a depth that I simply can't describe.

This current strip though is, at the very least, on equal footing in my mind. While I most definitely can't be certain as to the feelings of the characters(in this single strip only Mr. Burns could say for sure and in S*P over all only Mr. Milholland can be certain), I like to think that PeeJee meant every word she said, call me a sentimental fool.

Ouch. You kicked me in the gut with that last strip, Mr. Burns.

...don't kick'm when they're down. That's too easy. Far better to kick them down when they're up, eh?

You have evidently trained in poignant-fu. A very awesome and well-crafted storyline.

That was certainly classic S*P. Silly crude and geeky right up to when it rips your damn heart out.

Wow. You'd already impressed me with your storyline, but that last strip just blew your previous ones out of the water. And as I'm sure you took into account, hearing that must be horrible for PeeJee. As she said in one comic, Fred was the nicest person she met when she first came to Texas, the guy that gave her a hug like he'd known her for ages when they first met, just instantly accepted her without reservation, the only person (aside from Faye and Davan) to do so. And now, well, your strip says it all.

Joining the chorus of "great strip, Mr. Burns." Heartbreaking and human, really wonderful. Thank you, and Randy, for doing this for us all.

Back in the days of It's Walky! there was a certain refrain on the boards whenever something particularly poignant happened. I see no reason to not pass the mantle on to you after your performance.

Damn you, Burns!

wait, so did eric get to be the first to showcase fred's degeneration? Either way, great arc until you made me hate the world and everything in it. Kudos

(I needed a better word than degeneration there)

Honi, I bow to your superior knowledge on potent potables and suggest you clearly have way too much time and/or a brilliant career as a owner of a swanky Vegas-style bar in your future.

I'm not hating the degeneration. Listen, we all know that Fred's got Alzheimer's, it's not quite as "Damn You!" gut-wrenching as I think we're making it out to be. Gut-wrenching requires a certain sense of surprise or we're watching a car-wreck in process. Neither of that is happening in Fred's case. The only thing left to speculate is whether Fred will slowly lose it, or quickly lose his memory (and I'm voting for quickly losing it).

> way too much time and/or a brilliant career as a
> owner of a swanky Vegas-style bar in your future.

Little from column A, little from column B.

Mostly A.

Regarding the strip... I find it interesting that PeeJee played along with Fred's delusion. Assuming he remembers her doing it, I don't think he'll be too happy about it. He's always been a cold hard truth kind of guy. So has most of the SP cast, really.

Of course he could write for Randy. Now. If I could only get a Hell-kitty and Skinny-butt filler.

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