Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Downloads, Darkrooms, Dreams, and Daughters

It's been another long hiatus since I've written; school has been taking up a lot of my time. That and stressing out about the encroaching oil upon our shores here on Pensacola Beach. It arrived late last night and Wednesday morning. It's a mess - it's ALL a BIG mess.

So what's been happening around here.....


Well, that man I married managed a big gaffe a few weeks ago. He thought it okay to download a video game from Bit Torrent that led our internet provider to shut down our account.

It all started 8 months ago when I received a letter that he had downloaded a movie and if *we* downloaded any more copyrighted material, the net would go "Buh-Bye". After several hours of reprimanding him, having him delete Bit Torrent and ALL files he had downloaded; I was sure that was the end of it and he had learned his lesson.

But Noooooo-OOOOOOO-ooooooo!

My son had a friend over and they had been gabbing about this *cool* new game called Red Dawn Redemption (YES, this DOES lead back to that stupid freaking Xbox!), the hubs thought he would "impress" my son and his friend by letting him know he could steal get the game for them, download to a disk, and WAA-LA, be playing it before dinnertime.


Seems it was having trouble downloading - taking too long - what-E-ver. He just didn't get to impress them the way he wanted. The problem was that he never stopped the download, and two days later our internet was shut off.

Of course after a few hours of it gone and several family members starting to go into internet and Xbox Live DT's, I called. I was just so happy to find out WHY it had been cut off. The "customer service rep" tried to explain to me in her best broken English that "Yough ha no innernet becau yough dounload copywhi file".

I have no freaking clue where this woman came from, but she needs a serious refresher course if she's going to continue being in that job!

Back to the hubs I went.

He finally admitted he downloaded a book (now this was before I found out about the video game remind you). I told him we had to wait for a letter from the internet company - sign it - send it in - and only then would we have our internet back in about five days!

So we wait, and wait, and wait,....... letter never came. Julian is freaking out cause he can't get on Xbox, so I call again. This time I get this guy whom I can completely understand! He explains to me exactly what got downloaded and when.

I think he was from Oregon or Washington....

I call the hubs and proceed to convey what I had learned:

"What was it you said you downloaded that got our internet cut off?"

"Uh.... a book."

"What is Red Dawn Redemption?"

Long pause

"Uh...... a video game."

"And did you download this game?"

Another really long pause

"Well Julian and his friend were wanting to play it so I thought........"

Of course I have to stop him right there.


"I thought you said you weren't going to do that - you said it was A BOOK!"

"It's not on my computer."

"Did you download on the kid's computer?"

"............ I don't remember." (so politician of him)

I tell him I'll call him back as I go into investigative mode. I crank up the kids computer, do some looking around, and there - sure enough - is Bit Torrent!

I open it up and what do you think is still trying to download even though the internet is cut off? Red - Freaking - Dawn Redemption!

I go into a frenzy of deleting everything related to downloads on the computer cause if it shows up when the internet comes back on, we get SUED!

Until the internet got turned on..... another week later, I was left to drag my old laptop to Mickey D's and bribe the kids with endless supplies of french fries and ice cream cones while I conducted my own *business* on the net.

Life sure is more normal around here since it came back on!

Did I mention that Julian wanted to download some Xbox game mod-add on off of Bit Torrent yesterday?


I think you know by now that I have been living in a darkroom at school, four long days a week, for the past month. It's been an absolute exciting journey learning the basics up of black and white photography, how to shoot, and how to develop film.

The only downside I can see to this class is that:

A - It didn't last long enough - I could have gone for more like a six month class.

B - Me and my clothes are going to be smelling like a combo of pee and onions for a while because I can't seem to get the odor of developer/stop/and fixer out of anything!

My kids actually refer to me as *Playdough Woman" cause after I wash the stuff I wore to school, it smells like playdough.

I'm also a very light sensitive person; it's why I live at the beach - so I can get as much sunlight as possible as to avoid a possible coma! The darkroom did not help one bit in this department.

Most days, after spending six long hours in a dark room that it's only illumination comes from the dim light of an enlarger machine and a red light in the middle of the room, I was out for the count as soon as I got home.

My brain cells literally went into hyperdrive in the sleep department because they were getting mixed signals thinking it was nighttime all the time and sending mass quantities of melatonin into my system which put me close to that coma!

I never even heard that stupid mouse that has taken up residency in the wall at the headboard of where I sleep.

My kids grew several inches that I never even noticed until yesterday.

But I made some great pics!

You'll see them as soon as I get my scanner straightened since it doesn't recognized the new modem our internet server sent us since having to replace the last one due to the *illegal download* incident.


Seems like the oil, school, illegal downloads, and the stinking mouse living in my bedroom wall has been taking it's toll on my ability to have simple, normal dreams at night. I tell you about this one and you figure it out cause frankly, I don't think I should analyze this one:

I'm in this house which resembles one that the hubs and I lived in Santa Fe, NM. My cat Chowder is walking around the house just fine except his tail is falling off in one bit at a time. I reach out to pet him (again, he's acting just fine and purring), and as I get to his tail, the whole damn thing falls off in my hands!

I am freaking out and Chowder is now walking around with a little fur sticking out where his tail was. He climbs up on a table and lays down - he's still perfectly fine as I'm freaking out - and suddenly I see a mouse on the floor. I'm trying to get Chowder to notice the mouse so he can catch it. He seems totally bored with the idea of getting and catching a mouse and instead, is more entertained by my freaking out.

Suddenly, the whole floor has mice running all over the place. Nia is beside me as we starting looking for Toni and the twins. I sense Toni is there, yet I can't see here. I look for the twins and realized they have gone out the front door and it's wide open. I step outside and it's very cold, which signals to me that's how the mice got in, in order to get out of the cold.

Still can't find the twins or see Toni.

The dream ends with me and Nia walking into the bright light of the outdoors looking for the twins.

Okay all you Jungian Psychology majors! Line right up and tell me about THAT dream!

It's weird, but then again, I never claimed to be normal here.


One of my daughters flew the coop this week. No, not permanently! We all know that 12 year old girls can't make it in this world without mom and dad paying for their cell phone bills.

Which, by the way, she a new of as well (God help me and my budget!)

Nadia went to band camp in Arkansas this week. It's the longest she's been gone from my sight other than a sleepover with a friend or family.

To say that it was hard to let her go... physically and emotionally.... is an understatement.

You know what I mean; as you're driving them to the location of the bus that will soon whisk your child into the **unknown**, you begin to reminiscence about when your child suddenly let go of your hand as they took their first baby steps. When they suddenly ran far away from you for the first time. When they went out with their friends and didn't come back home when they were suppose to.


Then the tears start welling up in your eyes as your child starts rolling their eyeballs cause they just know your gonna make some hysterical scene in front of their friends.

I didn't make a scene, but I was the obnoxious parent with the camera flashing in everyone's eyeballs since it was pitch black outside from a horrid storm brewing.

The more I flashed, the more Nadia sank into her piles of luggage and into her sock monkey she just had to drag along for the ride.

And she said I was embarrassing!

After she was safely on the bus and driving away, then I let the tears flow like bloody Niagra Falls. I was crying 4 hours later into my third glass of Pinot Nior.

I'm such a pansy sometimes! At least the rest of the fam realized not to say anything and just let me have my little moment of mourning the fact that my 1st born daughter is really growing up and spreading her wings in order to fly.

Just like I'm suppose to teach her to do.

Sometimes I just wish we could be like birds and push our offspring out of the nest and be done with it.

I spend far less on Puffs Plus if we were.

She misses me though, her voice says more than her mouth is willing to admit. She's having a great time, she's tired, and she says the week is going too slow.

Translation: "I want to come home."

When she does arrive on Friday, I'll smooth the wrinkles from her weary wings, cuddle her into my arms, close my eyes and pretend she's only 4 and will be with me forever.

I'll tell I hope she had a great time, then I'll break the news to her about all the crappy oil that has now arrived on our beaches here and we can't go swimming anymore.

Next week, my topic might be on........ moving!

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