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What's goin' on...


I set up this radio in my home office. It's this little shelf CD player system that has an Ethernet port in the back so it can play MP3s off your computer and music off some song Web sites. Crazy, huh? I'm testing it out for a review. But I told you all that to tell you this: right when I started writing this entry, Marvin Gaye's "I Want You" was playing (it was on Virgin's music service under "Lovesexy." Yes, sometimes I listen to the "Lovesexy" channel. You got a problem with that?), which made me think of "What's Goin' On," which is exactly what this entry is about.

It's only kismet if you work really hard at it sometimes.

I was looking at some entries and I realized that unless you know me personally or you have a long telescopic lens and you live in Austin, you don't really know much about what's going on in my life right now. I keep a lot of personal stuff out of here, on purpose. I've seen the problems other journalers have had from being a little too open, and you know, I ain't havin' that. Simple as that.

But that doesn't mean we can't be friends, you know? It doesn't mean I can't share some stuff with you and we can do lunch sometime, and maybe trade recipes. That sort of thing.

So what's goin' on? I'd promised myself six ways to taco that I wasn't going to write about Sept. 11 and I guess I lied because here I am, a day later, about to say something about it. But I promise it'll be short: It's not mine.

I told my friend Tiffany this over e-mail and she's one of only a handful of people who would really understand what I mean because she was in OKC during that bombing. When we were there, covering it, invested, and seeing it with our own eyes, it became our tragedy. We were witnesses. We were locals.

Sept. 11 doesn't feel mine and it never has. And I count my blessings for that. I wasn't anywhere near it. No one in my family and none of my friends were directly affected in the way of losing someone. And even last year, I was removed from it at my job because I was on vacation when it happened.

This year, I woke up on Sept. 11, turned on the TV to make sure the world was relatively safe, and went to work. I didn't pay much attention to the news through the day. I stayed in my entertainment department bubble. When I had to edit a story about TV coverage late in the evening, I read it clinically. Then I went home.

I can feel very sorry for the people lost and the families they left behind. I can intellectually understand the gravity of the tragedy and feel the anger and frustration. But I can't take ownership. I can't personalize it and make it feel like it's my tragedy. It doesn't feel right to me. I'm an American, yes, but I don't feel I have any right to really say much about it or make any grand pronouncement about What This Means. I wasn't there. I don't know. I can only guess, and any guess would be folly.

So it's not mine. I have nothing to celebrate or eulogize. I can only watch from afar and hope that those who lost so much last year can find solace and peace.



What else is happening: We're still rehearsing for two big LCP shows. One at the Seattle Sketchfest, another in South Texas, where a lot of us grew up.

Rehearsals are Monday through Thursday night. I usually go straight from work unless I have a little time to grab a bite to eat. It's exhausting, but fun. But when I get home, there's so little time left for anything. It's shower time, watch a quick Tivo'd show, maybe write a bit, then bed. Everything has to be fit into this tiny window of free time, so I make this mad scramble like it's my last day on Earth. I cram so much into those few hours late in the night, that I go to bed winded, thinking of all the things I didn't get to. I really wanted to play Madden 2003 with my brother online, but so far we haven't connected. I wanted to get a little further on that vampire story. I wanted to write a good Terribly Happy entry. I wanted to work on getting this collaboration project set up properly.

Not enough hours. And it's gong to be like this for another month.



This weekend, I'm going to the wedding of one of my best friends in the world. I expect it to be pretty emotional: He's the first of my solid best guy friends to get hitched.

I'll be traveling up to the C of OK for that, but it's going to be a quick trip: Gotta turn right around to get back to the grind of work, rehearsals, that little window of Omie Time, then what passes for sleep these days.

My dad used to always tell me that he could see me age before his eyes because of how little sleep I typically get. At this rate, by the time I'm 30, I'll look like Hume Cronyn.

(Yes, I know Hume is dead. That's the point. I'm going to look like withered, dead Hume Cronyn. Is there anything sadder?)



In case you haven't heard, Television Without Pity came very close to an end recently for financial reasons.

This was a site that Heather and I used to covet, wishing that someday we could be lucky enough to write for them. We were little fans, desperately hoping the cool, snarky kids would look our way.

We salute you.

A few years later, and we've never had any desire to leave the TWOP family. It was painful to get that phone call we figured was coming: The one saying that the site was going to be gone. It would have left a huge void, and all of us knew it.

Luckily, an ad broker came in and saved the day, at least for now. Which means I'll be back to recapping Smallville soon, which is always good for a laugh or twelve thousand.

Even if you don't read the site, you could do me a huge personal favor and go over there, click on some ads and maybe buy some of their merchandise. Nobody does what they do on the Web (at least not in any remotely comparable way), and they deserve to stick around and be rich and famous. Go support one of the few truly original, great sites on the Web. (Then come back here for come home-baked cookies.)



Today, I reregistered at Ye Olde Net Sol Shoppe of Names Domained. (They call themselves "VeriSign" now. How weak and smelling of diseased vulva is that?) I signed up for three more years. Which, of course, doesn't mean I'm actually going to be doing this shit for three more years. Every year, I plan to make increasingly gruffer Danny Glover noises about how I'm this close to retirement.

All it means, really, is that some assmunch cockschmoe can't come around and steal this domain, like they did the non-hyphenated version last year. I was told by some people that it's since become a porn site (which was my intent all along before the bastards stole it), but all I see there is a lame directory site. According to Domains 'R Us, it's now owned by someone in Hong Kong. I have this elaborate fantasy about taking a little ferry to Hong Kong and going all Jackie Chan on their asses. This would, of course, require that I actually have Mr. Chan in tow to administer the Jackie Channing upon their asses. But it's my fantasy, and if I want Jackie to beat those philandering fuckwits, it shall happen, posthaste and without due process. Capisce? Or rather, "memahami?"



And that's it. That's what's going on. I have friends who are going through tough personal tragedies and other friends who are embarking on huge life journeys.

It's a little bit of good, a little bit of bad, and more lately than usual, some kind of wonder that things manage to stay connected; they hold together and keep. After last year, I was one of those who wondered how things could possibly continue as they had been.

Well, they don't. They change and grow or fall apart and start anew. But everything changes. And I'm one of those people who can't always accept that. But they do. And I try to understand it, to embrace it when I can.

It all in this world changes. And you can ride along, or you can dig in your heels. Right now, I'm trying to ride along and see where life takes me. Sometimes it moves faster than you expected and you have to run along the side, like you're the last person on the train. That's where I am, I think. I'm trying to keep up, and if I manage to make it on, I think I'll be excited about the destination.


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