Sunday, December 24, 2006

Dear Charlie:

I'm not gloating. Too much has to happen for my boys to magically appear in a wild card spot in the playoffs to gloat.

But I am pointing. At the scoreboard in the sidebar. And I'm smiling.

'Cause...ya know...that's 8 in a row against Oakland. I'm just sayin.

*doesn't gloat*

Hey! We needed a win! Even if/when we don't hit the playoffs, no one wants 5 losses at the end of the season! And God only knows how Jacksonville will play next week. Will we have the Roll-over Kittens or the Ravening Beasts? You just never know with them!

Friday, December 22, 2006

Dear Charlie:

The Geeb is supremely content.

Yes, it was a looooong week. Yes, I put in too much overtime. Yes, I baked too much and have a low and throbbing ache in the small of my back from bending over to cut out 500+ tiny little gingerbread and star cookies.

But a moment ago, I was sitting in my comfortably overstuffed and oversized chair, watching Tremors 4, sipping Pesh's fabulous Cozy in a Cup [my last jar was sadly depleted, but she brought me some more just yesterday], and glancing now and then at the signed and newly framed picture of my beloved Jayne that joined the signed and framed picture of Vin Diesel on my Wall O' Shame [thank you, Jody!], and it's almost impossible to not be content with such gifts before me.

Plus, I got to sleep in this morning, thanks to that overtime. Woot for sleep!

So, yes, GutterBall is a happy girl. It doesn't take much, but I'm grateful for it, just the same. Good times.

Oops, gotta go. My Cozy in a Cup needs a refill.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Dear Charlie:

Due to two losses -- two stunning and incomprehensible losses -- in two weeks by my beloved Chiefs, I have decided to yet again take one for the team. Yes, you guessed it.

I put up my Christmas tree.

You see, it's a special Christmas tree. It's good luck. Usually. It's a simple, fake, 3 ft. tree, and I only use white lights, gold rope for tinsel, red ornaments, and a very simple gold-wire angel for the top. It's the Chiefs Christmas tree.

And it usually works. There are notable exceptions.

Last year, before that lovely head-on drive during which they won all of their last games, I made the mistake of jumping the gun. I put up the tree when they were still winning. I put it up before taking a trip to the hometown, and they lost. Panicked, I drove all the way back here and took it down less than 24 hours later. They won the last five games of the season (or was it four?).

But other than that, it's usually really good luck for me to put that darn tree up in December. We'll see this evening. If my beloved ones lose tonight, I'll take it right back down again.

Don't get me wrong; it's a lovely tree. Its simplicity is actually kind of nostalgic. But I don't do Christmas or its trappings. It's one day, folks. It's not three months.

I'm good for one day. Not so much for the rest of the season. I think it's stupid. All right for children, I guess, but even adults get all gung-ho about the 100-odd days of Christmas. Meh.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Dear Charlie:

Is it bad when you joke that you'll make cookies again when someone else provides the ingredients...and someone actually does?

I sat down at my desk Monday morning thinking about superbills (they are neither super nor bills, incidentally) and the Chiefs game...travesty...whatever, and out of nowhere, two bags of Nestle chocolate chips drop onto my desk. I look down at them, then up at the therapist smiling so expectantly at me.

Me: Is that a hint?

Therapist: Merry Christmas.

Me: *snort* For you, maybe.

Of course, I will make them. Because I'm both a Grinch and a sucker. See, I feel bad about being a Grinch. It doesn't make me like the Christmas season any more, but it makes me try not to be so bad when people who do love the season are around. The operative word there is "try".

But alas, I worked laaaate Monday night and was out late tonight, so the requested (and ingredient-supplied) cookies will have to wait until tomorrow. Or maybe Thursday. Because, see, Friday and Saturday...I have to make more than just cookies. We're having an office Christmas party, and I was leg-roped into going.

I was adamant that I would not show. Last year, I had to wear a Santa hat for the majority of the evening.

Not. Amused.

But this year, they're having a Christmas cookie bake-off. *rubs hands in anticipation* Of course, they have joked -- I hope they're joking -- that I can't participate because everyone knows my chocolate chip cookies and said cookies would win. I think they're joking. They're not that good. But I wasn't planning on bringing chocolate chip cookies, anyway. I'm taking a new recipe, and God only knows how it'll turn out.

Think they'll let me play?

*starts with the puppy eyes*

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Update:

Well, my beloved Chiefs may be losing in droves to the Crows, but the other battle seems to be a victory all around.

Check it out.

Yup. Practically the whole cast and many of the recurring/side characters showed up free o' charge to party with the bedraggled and frustrated Firefly fans. God bless 'em. They're perhaps the most loved cast in history for good reason.

It just...kinda makes you feel good, don't it? Reading about generosity from all sides?

Yeah.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Marvelous Sidebar (updated):

As you all know, I am a huge Firefly fan. Couldn't swing the big convention this year (or last year, though that was a bit before my conversion), but I truly envied all the shiny folks who bought their tickets months and months in advance for such a fun event. The Big Damn Flanvention II. No, that's not a typo.

It's a Browncoat thing.

So anyway, I'm browsing around the 'Verse yesterday evening and I come across this post on WHEDONesque about how, at the literal last minute, the convention people -- a group called Booster Entertainment -- dropped the ball and cancelled the Flanvention. Less than 24 hours from the kick-off. Seriously.

Hundreds...thousands?...of people had purchased tickets and airfare and hotel reservations and rental cars and God only knows what else to be at this thing and rub elbows with the actors and writers and such, and BE supposedly ran out of money. At the last minute.

The vast majority of these people can't even get refunds. Some people were already at the Burbank Hilton, where the event was supposed to take place. It was a disaster.

But...let us not forget that these are no ordinary fans. These are Browncoats. They do the impossible on a regular basis. They got a half-season TV show made into a feature film that earned back its dough. These folks even made Amazon's top 1000 with the documentary they made of that process, Done the Impossible.

These people are extremely organized, and they don't give up.

So, they're throwing a Backup Bash for those who couldn't or wouldn't change their plans. Yeah, they may have lost their money on that con of a convention planner, but they're by God gonna have a good time.

And then...the Big Damn Heroes showed up. First, it was Adam Baldwin -- my own adored Jayne. He showed even though he knew it was cancelled and he wouldn't get paid. He sat down in the Hilton's bar with those disappointed, furious, frustrated fans and had a drink and lifted their spirits until everyone was sure that the Backup Bash was on. Then, a few of the other actors/writers/people signed on for other events over the weekend.

And then...the other Browncoats kicked in. Ya know, the ones who weren't going anyway. The ones who could and did change their plans. The ones who just now found out about the Flanvention in the first place. They donated their own hard-earned cash so that the people stuck in Burbank could have their Flanvention run by the amazingly organized Browncoats who had already used their contacts in the Biz to get the big names there and to set up events and shindigs and food and lodging. They gave of themselves with no chance of return so that others who had been so blatantly ripped off could have at least something to show for their coinage.

In just over 18 hours, they raised $3200. That number is still on the rise.

You know, the vast majority of the time, I pity the human race for its lack of foresight, compassion, or logic. Individuals are capable of great acts, sure, but the bulk of humanity is short-sighted and selfish.

And then something like this happens, and I feel better.

Thanks to all the Browncoats who are helping each other out, and thanks to the actors and other personnel who are giving of their time for their fans. I know those Flan-goers appreciate it, but it's gotta be nice to hear that others appreciate it, too.

[EDIT: Here is a quick story from someone who didn't know it was cancelled until he arrived, but still managed to have fun anyway because the Big Damn Heroes showed up for free and some other well-organized big damn heroes managed to salvage the fiasco. Gotta love those Browncoats. Gotta love those actors.]

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Dear Charlie:

You know, I really do have the best friends. Every darn one of them, from better-than-acquaintance to I'd-give-you-a-kidney. Excellent friends, excellent family. I get the best presents, which kinda makes me feel bad because I'm such a scrooge!

Anyway, my friend and co-worker, Jody, really thinks hard to get me what she thinks I'll love as presents. See, she knows that I'm ridiculously easily pleased. She could get me a toothbrush, and I'd be thrilled. But she wants to show that she knows me, that she cares, so she really digs deep.

Last year for Christmas -- or was it my birthday? -- she got me Chiefs fuzzy dice for my car. Chiefs fuzzy dice! I didn't even know they made them! They are in my car until the day I die, I swear to God. How cool is it? The "one" dot is the arrowhead! Awesome!

Anyway, so this year, she dug deeper still and got me something that just about has me speechless.

A signed...SIGNED!...picture of Vin Diesel. Stack of Bibles, folks. I got an honest to God signed picture of Vin Diesel for Christmas. Got it today. Drooled over it all day. Bought a frame for it after work. Am looking at it right now.

More accurately, I'm drooling over it right now.

She looked over several options and got just the right one. Casual, smiling, very very nice. Oh, yeah. I love this picture.

This is right up there with the Chiefs tickets to Arrowhead at Christmas that Karla gives me and the time I got three copies of Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl! I mean, WOW! OH! And the shot glass chess set! I love that one, too!

I am humbled and very, very grateful, folks. I may be a grinch when it comes to the Christmas season, but you guys make all the irritation worth the effort. I can only hope that the stuff I give you in return is half as thoughtful and treasured.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Sidebar:

WAAAAAAH!!

*points at sidebar scoreboard...falls over...dies*