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(no subject) [Oct. 9th, 2012|11:43 am]
songcoyote
Okay, I knew in the background of my mind that C.S. Lewis wasn't exactly a fluffy bunny kind of writer; even his best known stuff is at least somewhat disturbing. But this one really tweaked my brain a bit:

Arise my body, my small body, we have striven
Enough, and He is merciful; we are forgiven
Arise small body, puppet-like and pale, and go,
White as the bed-clothes into bed, and cold as snow
Undress with small, cold fingers and put out the light
And be alone, hush'd mortal, in the sacred night
-A meadow whipt flat with the rain, a cup
Emptied and clean, a garment washed and folded up
Faded in colour, thinned almost to raggedness
By dirt and the washing of that dirtiness.
Be not too quickly warm again. Lie cold; consent
To weariness' and pardon's watery element
Drink up the bitter water, breathe the chilly death;
Soon enough comes the riot of our blood and breath.

Brrr.... And now back to my regularly scheduled cheeriness, oddly buoyed by that glimpse into darkness.

Light and laughter,
SongCoyote
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(no subject) [Sep. 4th, 2012|01:02 pm]
songcoyote
According to a fun little site at http://en.shindanmaker.com/219278

SongCoyote is made of internet, girl, and Mother Nature. With a dash of radiation.

Totally, completely, and 100% true!

If you make your own, note that punctuation matters. To wit:
Songcoyote is made of sapphires, intelligence, and leadership. With a dash of Billy Joel. Fortunately I'm quite fine with that result, too.

Light and laughter,
SongCoyote
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About Schlock Mercenary [May. 14th, 2012|08:25 pm]
songcoyote
I am a regular reader of online comics of a variety of flavors. My tastes vary considerably, and I have shifted my reading list many times over the years. There are a few, though, that have always remained on said list - and an even smaller number that have never left it and never will.

These include Digger, Girl Genius, Order of the Stick... and by no means least, Schlock Mercenary.

It's not just because Howard Tayler's comic is funny, which it is. It's not just because it is well-crafted science fiction, has epic storylines, features a remarkably diverse set of personalities (let alone xenomorphs), and get the math right. It's because it delivers on all the promise of these ideas and ideals, and many more besides, consistently: across comics, across stories, and across more than ten years, with not a single late post.

It's hard to fathom just how remarkable that is. I've been fortunate enough to watch the comic grow almost since its inception, from rough art with rough (but funny) jokes to epic stories and vicious puns that took months to set up. It has been an amazing journey that has even, at times, brought me to tears. How many continually updated and/or added to stories have survived that long and are still that good? (OK, yes, Terry Pratchett - but it's unfair to compare anyone to that particular genius).

In closing, I admit freely that writing this post was sparked by a contest celebrating the pre-order for the latest paper edition of the comic. But rummaging around in my heart to find the right words to say about something I’ve enjoyed nearly daily for a decade was also a good experience. And in the end, I realized that I would have done this for no reward other than the hope that Howard might read it and get just a little extra spark from the love this fan offers him in thanks for the pleasure his creation has given to me and so many others.

So thanks, Howard. Here's to as many years as you care to put into this wonderful tale. I'll be along for the ride to the end... and beyond.

Light and laughter,
SongCoyote
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Warning: Potentially Triggery [May. 9th, 2012|09:39 am]
songcoyote
Reposted with permission is a free verse piece about anguish. It's pretty intense. Read with caution and sufficient spoons to process if you're triggered by abuse stories. I know that some of my friends appreciate the catharsis they can provide, so I wanted to share this.

It certainly hit me hard, but it was strangely exalting.

Light and laughter,
SongCoyote


Read more...Collapse )
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(no subject) [Jan. 6th, 2012|06:47 pm]
songcoyote
Okay, time for a brief info dump on what's been occupying a lot of my mind and time the past couple of weeks: my father's health.
On Boxing Day my stepmom, Roz, told me he was in the hospital, so I drove down to see him. He had sepsis and a heart attack and almost died, but with great fortune recovered fairly well over the ensuing week. He went home New Year's Eve and while weak seemed to be getting better.
I drove down again yesterday at Roz's invite to attend their 21st anniversary party, on arrival discovered he was back in the hospital because he was getting weaker and short of breath. Current (and very probable) diagnosis: congestive heart failure. So... not a good long-term prognosis. He's now recovering (again) and getting medications to keep him going, and will got home (again) in a couple of days... but he's not going to live a lot longer.
As you might imagine this is taking up a fair amount of my mental bandwidth. If I'm busy or short or distracted or just not around for a while, I hope you'll forgive me as I face my father's mortality, and through his, my own.

I am still finding humor (he is, too) and making as much joy as I can in my life, and I will continue to do so; that's part of my Path. And so I close wishing you all a wonderful weekend and many smiles, as I will find as well.

Light and laughter,
SongCoyote
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(no subject) [Oct. 26th, 2011|11:02 am]
songcoyote
A few thoughts on open relationships, as I said them to someone who asked for advice.

First off, open relationships are challenging, and definitely not for everyone. You are hopefully aware of how much communication a good relationship requires - especially a LDR as you currently have. Well, each additional person multiplies the complexity if you are truly being open about what you're doing. And that's what it comes down to: being open, honest, and compassionate with your choices, including compassionate to yourself. A little selfishness is okay, so long as that doesn't rule your choices or override how you treat others.

So what do you do about it? (Please note that I'm better at this in person where I can interact and ask questions, so please pardon me if I include stuff that you feel isn't directly relevant to your situation.) Well, there are two people involved in this decision: you and him. If you want an open relationship that still has him at its core, that's fine so long as you tell him that. Before you start such a conversation, though, you both need to consider all of the following (plus anything else that comes up; this is just a start): what happens when you develop an emotional attachment to someone else? What about sex with other people? Are you both permitted to behave in the same ways? (The answer to that one should ideally be "yes", though "I won't but you can" is acceptable if you can establish that it's truly heartfelt.) Are you interested in continuing to date others even after you're together full time? Are you actually seeking other lovers / life-mates / etc. or just getting some human contact while waiting to be with him?

Give each other time to come up with answers, then get together and compare them. Be open, honest, and direct; dancing around the subject will make it harder and will (not can, will) make it too easy to continue dancing until you can't tell what the truth of the matter really is. Find which answers you can compromise on and which are "it must be this way". If you can find sufficient common ground, make an agreement... but be prepared at any time, even immediately after making it, to re-negotiate if the situation changes. We're tricky critters, us humans, and even after careful consideration we don't always know our own minds and hearts. Be patient with yourselves and each other, be sure to listen as well as be willing to speak up, and keep on communicating. The discussions you'll have as a result of this have a good chance of enacting change in you, in him, and in your relationship - and generally, open communication only improves relationships, even if that "improvement" isn't what you expected or desired.

And above all, through the whole process, remember that he's likely as nervous and unsure about all this as you are. Be as kind as you can without compromising your core values, whatever they may end up being.

That's a start, and enough for now, I think. If you'd like to discuss it more or have more questions, please e-mail me at SongCoyote at yahoo. I am glad to help where I can.

....
Recorded here so I don't lose the threads of this thought :) Will be cross-posted to DreamWidth.

Light and laughter,
SongCoyote
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Dream Time! [Jul. 26th, 2011|11:51 am]
songcoyote
I don't remember my dreams often these days; I wonder if it's my regular roleplaying habit? :) This morning, though, I had quite an interesting one.

I was "visiting the snow" as we call it in the SF Bay Area and was on my way back from a beautiful frozen mountainside. Janelle and my friend Matt Collins took a side path to get a different vista while I rode the 4-wheel snow cart like a crazed jockey on a wild but cooperative horse. I was having a blast until I heard the avalanche; when I rode back to the vista, the overlook had disappeared along with Matt and Janelle.

I rode frantically (the long way) down to the bottom of the hill to find Janelle hurt but not buried; she had somehow ridden the flow of the avalanche and been tumbled relatively gently to the bottom. I calmed her as she was kind of freaking out (I threatened to slap her if she didn't talk to me, which annoyed her enough to do so) then when I saw she could walk I moved on to look for Matt. I coordinated several nearby people who got snow shovels and such and we started digging. After a while I had the bright idea to call his cell phone, and I found it in a snow bank by its ringing - but no Matt.

As we dug we revealed an old building under the ice and snow (dream logic) with its front face torn off by the avalanche. I went into the bottom floor and heard a sound; following it, I spotted Matt climbing painfully down a thin metal ladder in an access duct, leaving bloody marks behind from his wounds. He fell the last 7 feet or so and I managed to catch him. He looked startled, then murmured, "Thanks, I think that fall would have done me in," before falling unconscious in my arms. I walked out of the building with him toward the emergency vehicles that were just arriving, and then I woke up.

I don't often have dreams where I'm clearly the hero of the story, so in that way it was nice. I'm not sure if there's any other meaning in the dream, or even if there needs to be. Thanks for the entertainment, brain!

Light and laughter,
SongCoyote
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Jobs Available for Sofware Developers and Sales [Jul. 14th, 2011|09:41 am]
songcoyote
Hi, friends!

My company, Medrio, is currently hiring Software Developers (ideally with C# experience) and Software Sales people, along with a couple of other positions. Check out the listings at http://www.medrio.com/company/careers.html and if you apply, let them know I referred you.

Medrio is an Electronic Data Capture SaaS company serving Clinical Trials headquartered in San Francisco. They are small but profitable, offer benefits and stock, and from the 3 months I've been here a great place to work!

Good luck!

Light and laughter,
SongCoyote
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I less than three Ursula Vernon! [Jul. 5th, 2011|02:18 pm]
songcoyote
The more I find out about Ursula Vernon, the more I deeply appreciate her existence.

I adore her art, have recently discovered how much I enjoy her writing, and now I am awed by her wisdom, to wit:

http://www.redwombatstudio.com/blog/?p=4576

I agree wholeheartedly with what she says in the above. After catharsis, I have stronger opinions about what people "should" do (whatever that means), but what you feel is what you feel.

Thanks, Ursula, for a nice kick in the brain-pants.

Light and laughter,
SongCoyote
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Happy and Nervous - it's a two-for-one deal! [Jun. 6th, 2011|05:03 pm]
songcoyote
So the job I started in April is great - good people, strong company, acceptable pay, flexible hours and ideas about how to approach quality (which is my field) - nearly ideal, actually. One of the wonderful and scary things about it, though, is that I'm in a position of particular responsibility when it comes to dealing with customer visits (audits), including preparation, communication, and associated documentation.

Now mind you, this is something I've supported quite a bit in the past, but now I'm specifically training to become the person responsible for it. This is both exalting and daunting. Fortunately I seem to be doing okay so far, as evidenced by this very kind comment from one of my co-workers:

"Thanks Gareth – it’s really great having you onboard for these! I was here for a couple audits before you joined and there is a major difference in the overall stress level around the office coming compared to the ones I saw before. Everybody seems relaxed and confident and I’m positive that’s because you’ve gotten everything under control."

This is very complimentary, and darnit, the feeling he describes is in part because of my efforts to keep things going smoothly. But the little part of me that is all too aware of how oddly built my career is (not to mention that looming oaf, Self-Doubt) is twisting around in my stomach because if some part of the audit tomorrow (and it's an important one) goes belly-up, so too might any chance of real success here for me.

I don't think it's actually that dire; I haven't been here long enough to have royally screwed anything up; any major system issues were here when I arrived and I haven't had time to fix them. And truth be told, I have the kind of experience and approach that tends to help assuage an auditor's concerns (one way being that I can say "We're aware of that problem and are working to fix it; here's how!" and make it stick). But it's still an audition of sorts, and I'm having my usual stage butterflies :)

I think we'll do fine, and will get a nice laundry list of things the customer would like to see to be happier with how we do things, most of which will be things I would have suggested anyway, so in the end it will all be to the good. But sometimes it's worth it to get all these thoughts out of my head and onto {virtual} paper so the rattling moths in the echoing recesses of my mind don't keep flapping about all willy-nilly.

Everything will be fine. I'm good at this, and by gosh people like me! Not everyone, mind you, but enough people, hopefully including tomorrow's auditors :D

Light and laughter,
SongCoyote
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