jackofallgeeks: (Dark)
So, I came over here looking for one of my Vash Icons (somehow, Google wasn't able to find me a good picture) and ended up looking around a bit... It's actually a bit depressing. Like going back to my old stomping grounds and finding that my old hangout is closed down, all my friends moved away, and they paved over the park. It looks like only a few of you are left that still use LiveJournal, and even fewer that've kept their atrophied connection with my journal. That's mostly my fault; except for a Blip flood sometime last year, I haven't updated this since June of 2009, and it was sparse even before that.

Life moves on, and while I'm here I guess I might fill you in on it. Meghan and I were married the last time I posted; now we have a little girl, Maire Shannon, who's turning 6 months next week. She's teething and gurgling and generally is a very easy-to-handle baby. She doesn't fuss a lot (unless something is very wrong) and she deals well with "strangers" (you know, like her aunts or grand parents). I'm still working as a Computer Consultant, but with a recent switch in management in my office I'm looking to find a new position. I'll probably still stay with the company (I'm not sure I'd find a better deal at the moment anyways), but moving to a different office might be a good idea... We're getting our house refinanced, too, though the bank is currently taking it's time on "internal "processes." We'll see how that goes.

I've been running a regular, weekly D&D game with Meghan and some of our buddies. We just started a quick Shadowrun game (with someone else GMing) for a little break. It's nice, though I think my interpretation of the setting would be a little different (more tech-heavy, I think). Meg and I have re-activated our WoW accounts, though my usual complaints about the game (friends all on different servers, and too high level, so never anyone to play with) still hold. I also play a lot of StarCraft 2 (I loved the original), though lately I've been playing custom variations a lot more than the actual game itself.

And that's life in a nutshell. I'd say that I tend to say more on Facebook and Twitter, but lately that hasn't been true, either; in a weird way, I've been unplugged a lot more lately. With getting married, having a child, and seeing a subgroup of my friends more regularly in person, I guess I just haven't needed the Internet for socializing as much. And I think that's really kind of sad in a way.
jackofallgeeks: (Nevermore)
So, I'm twenty-four years old. I've earned both a Bachelor's degree and a Master's degree. I've been living on my own more-or-less for the last 6 years. I own my own car, manage my own finances, and I'm in the middle of buying a house. I don't consider myself "an adult" yet (a discussion for another time), but I also certainly don't consider myself a child.

I was at my parents' house this weekend. At some point before I got there, my parents had had a disagreement of sorts, and at some time after I arrived they had an honest fight. Now, this doesn't really surprise me, in one sense. In fact, it's perfectly reasonable that any two people will at times have misunderstandings and arguments, that feelings can be hurt and tempers can raise. I've seen it first-, second-, and third-hand for years.

When I heard mom and dad fighting, though... I didn't know how to deal with it. I felt like a scared little boy. I went up to the guest room, closed the door, and tried to read but I simply couldn't concentrate. I wanted nothing more than to curl up and cry.

It passed, mom and dad came to an understanding and before dinner everything was back to normal. I was struck by how deeply it had affected me, though. Even then it felt like how I imagine a small mid-west town feels after a tornado strikes, and house later I still wasn't quite back to my equilibrium. The very foundations of my world had been shaken. And like I said, I'm not some child; I'm a grown man who understands that his parents are real people. And even at that I was cut to the quick.

I think, maybe, I've never really experienced my parents fighting. If they fought when I was younger (which I'm sure they must have, to some extent), they either kept it to themselves, behind closed doors, or I simply succeeded in completely forgetting the incidents. Judging by how I was affected by it at my age and with my experience, it's no wonder that little children can be so traumatized by what, to their parents, is "only a little fight."
jackofallgeeks: (Contemplative)
I am going to miss it here.
I'm going to miss Laurel and Tom and Jonathan and Chris and Bruce.
I'm going to miss Brent and Haven and the Game Habitat and the weather.
I'm going to miss my housemates, who I really like even if I never get to hang out with them.
There's a lot that I'm going to miss when I get out of here.

But the thought of being able to go home is so great that it makes me want to cry.
jackofallgeeks: (Wrath)
Another post about Meghan. The whole thing is sticky. From my end, it looks like we have un-reasovable issues, things I am unwilling to bend on and, frankly, I don't want someone who has to bend on them to meet me. Some say I should drop her and fast. Others say I should give it a chance, every couple has issues. Even aside from all that I don't intend to lose her as a friend, and she seems intent on proving to me that the issues I see aren't as grand as they seem. I remain skeptical.

The point is, the other day she left me a voice message saying, simply, "we need to talk, give me a call back." And when I did call her back, she said that a friend of hers had claimed to see a post by me on MySpace saying that there was a girl who was interested in me, and I wasn't really into her, but I was lonely and she had esteem issues, and I could at least get some attention from it. And that though there were no names, the friend got the impression that Meghan was the girl referred to. And all of this was supposed to have been posted on June 30th. When they went looking for the post again, it was nowhere to be found, but the Internet is nothing if not mutable.

I should hope, in fact expect, that anyone who knows me knows how ridiculous an accusation this is. Firstly, I don't use MySpace much at all; I have one, but I rarely log on, let alone post on my blog. Secondly, the idea that I would knowingly use someone for my own gratification, let alone exploit their insecurities, is so utterly against my nature that I find it difficult to express. As a child, *I* had esteem issues, I was the outcast and I was the one who was picked on. Sometimes the abused becomes the abuser, but in my case I'm just completely turned off by the notion, I will forgive almost anyone weaknesses and faults. I've even gotten angry when friends of mine belittle others, regardless of how true or deserved the belittling is. I don't do that.

Never mind the fact that affection is too sacred to me. I don't want hollow affection, I'm not interested in attention from those who's feelings I don't share -- I'll accept it, I'll allow it, I won't discourage someone just because their feelings aren't returned; there's nothing wrong with affection, and I think it's a crime that we've all been taught to fear expressing ourselves for the threat of rejection. But I won't seek it, and I certainly won't manipulate someone to get it.

And on top of that, who does this third party think they are, seeking me out online to find dirt on me and reveal it to others? It's my understanding that I don't know them, and that they would come looking for me and scurry back to divulge whatever morsels they found angers me. I'm an open man. I'm honest and upfront, I tell things as they are to the best of my ability. If you have an issue with me, you simply need to bring it to my attention and it will be resolved.

The trouble is several-fold.

Somehow, people in circles Meghan's connected with (almost none of whom know me) have gotten into their heads that Meghan and I are dating (or, if they aren't aware that Meghan's broken up with her old boyfriend, that we're cheating). We're not. Frankly, I'm not sure we ever will be, but that's neither here nor there. I'm effing 3000 miles away. What's dating supposed to mean when there's an entire continent between you?

Besides that, theres is another Andrew Portner here on the Internet -- he's the one you're most likely to find if you Google me. Try it. He's something of a stand-up comic, he's done things called "The Adam and Andrew Show" and "Smile and Nod." There's even a vid on YouTube with a skit he did where he mentions me -- the guy with his name. I don't find him particularly funny (even aside from poking fun at me :p) and he can be kind of crass. He's also a Computer Scientist and in California, in fact only a couple hours south of where I am now. Needless to say, his existence (and prevalence) complicates the task of find information on me, especially if you don't know me and are only scouring the Internet. In fact, his AIM is "AndrewPortner," whereas mine never has been and probably never will be any form of my name.

And, of course, none of this really bothers me -- what do I care about how people who don't know me think of me? Meghan is far more concerned with her appearance and reputation, even when people who don't know her make ridiculous, unfounded claims about things they can't know. And she comes to me, expecting that I should know, or at least care, about this. And I really don't.

Maybe my one set of friends are right, maybe there's potential with Meghan and I, maybe we can do each other some good -- my friends at least say that I can bring her into reality and show her value where she wouldn't have even looked before -- but right now? I doubt it. Every time she and I talk about it, I'm more and more convinced of the issues, and less and less interested in trying to resolve them. Maybe it's bad timing, I don't function well over impersonal media ,but...

I 'click' better with lots of other people. Meghan has the whole "Catholic" and "family oriented" over them, but I'm no more willing to compromise someone who can understand my world and my philosophy. It's not nearly as difficult explaining myself to any of you as it is trying to explain the same things to her.
jackofallgeeks: (Gendo)
Sometimes I don't really like me.

I'm very confident in myself. I believe myself to be friendly, intelligent, responsible, moderately-handome, passably-clever, and an all-around nice guy. But I can also be an elitist; believing myself to be on a level above the 'common man,' I can make snap judgments about people based on where I percieve them to lie -- usually intellectually or socially. I don't like to associate myself with people I can't respect or admire in some way, and every now and again I find myself feeling rather... disdainful of those I feel are below my level.

It's a horrible thing to say, and an even worse thing to feel.

There's a girl here in my program who has come off as my inferior intellectually and socially; she can't grasp concepts and she's awkward in many social situations -- and in neither case does she seem particularly aware of her deficiency, a high crime in my book of elitism. I'm alright with people as they are so long as they recognize it in themselves.

So there's this girl, and she's in a course with me this quarter, and we're supposed to form two- or three-person groups for the labs. And instead of offering to help her out and guide her through some of the tougher concepts, I've found myself actively avoiding her and looking for anyone else to group with, perferably someone I feel can pull their own weight.

I'm in a group with her now, with one other guy who's only auditting the class. But I can't shake this feeling of superiority and disdain, and it makes me feel like such a heel.
jackofallgeeks: (Weird)
Names have always fascinated me. I can't really express how, I'm just really curious about what people call each other, what people call themselves, and why. For example, I call myself Andrew; not just when I introduce myself, but in my inner monologue and whenever I think about myself -- I'm Andrew. Some people, particularly family, call me Andy; it's what I was called as a kid, and part of my thinks that my shift to Andrew was a means for me to move away from "childish things." Not that I dislike the name Andy; sometimes it irritates me when certain people call me by it, but only because I think of it as a rather familiar name, reserved for family and particularly intimate friends. I loath the name Drew. I don't really know why. I'm decidedly not Drew, and I've actually taken offense at being called by Drew, like a knee-jerk reaction.

Because of all the above, I'm always interested in what people call themselves. Here I digress about given names. )

Anyways, I've gone off on a tangent. I meant to talk about Surnames, which now have less and once had more meaning than given names. "Portner" allegedly comes from a German word for a gate guard, or something. It was a profession, like weaver, smith, potter. And here I go off about surnames. )

But here I get to my point. See, I'm a traditional sort of guy, and traditionally when a guy and girl gets married, she would take his surname. Now, this all comes from a long line of patriarchal societies, where the wife would literally join her husband's family, and there were dowry and lines of succession and heirs to determine and all that. If it's your thing, you're free to rage about the injustice of it all. For me, I've always been kind of jealous of girls for having the opportunity to change their names and, in a real way, redefine themselves. As a man in our society, traditionally speaking of course, that's not an option for me. I will ever and always be Andrew Portner, for better or for worse. Not that I'm particularly looking to ditch my name -- I love the family it connects me to and, if nothing else, I have the utmost admiration for my father. I'm just saying, girls can change their names and boys can't. Traditionally.

Now, not everyone it traditional. I'd say 'particularly these days,' but I imagine there were non-traditional people in times gone by; I don't think society can survive without them, really. But these days, not only could I go through the paperwork and get my name legally changed, but a good handful of couples (I don't think they're a majority yet, or necessarily a significant portion, but I don't know numbers, either) are toying with their surnames when they get married. I've never been a fan of hyphenating surnames -- it's just not aesthetically pleasing to me -- but apparently some people have taken to mashing their surnames together Smith and Johnson become 'Smithson' or whatever), or forming their name wholecloth (presumably to signify something particularly important to the both of them). And it only stands to reason that their are men out there taking their wives' surnames.

So, I'm curious what you all think of this. At least in theory -- like I said, I don't think any of this is a particularly common practice yet. So, are people who mash their names together just being silly? Are couples who make up a new surname (or take someone else's entirely) being presumptuous? Is a man who takes his wife's name particularly weak, or she particularly hard-lined feminist? Should we all just stick to the traditional way of taking the man's name, because it makes sense? How much do you really hate hyphenated surnames?

I was going to put up a poll to make it easy on you all, but I couldn't find a tractable way to phrase the question(s). So, please tell me what you're thinking in a comment. Especially if you've made it through all my rambling, as I don't expect many will.
jackofallgeeks: (Contemplative)
So, last night after eating corn beef and having some Guinness with friends, I came home to work on a bit of my research. Very randomly I got an IM from an here-again-gone-again friend of mine (really more of a friend of a friend) from high school, Ryan. We had a pretty good conversation talking about a whole bunch of stuff starting with girls and ending somewhere around religion.

Along the religion side of things, Ryan made some comment like "unless you believe in an afterlife without physical bodies" to which I replied "no, I believe in the resurrection of the body," which is a line straight from the Apostle's Creed. And with all the disbelief and incredulity one can muster through IM, he said, "are you serious?" Yeah, I said, it's a Catholic thing. I was a little shocked myself that he would have to ask me if I meant what I'd said, though in hindsight I don't think Ryan really knows me well at all.

That's not the point of the post, though, just the set up. We went from there to talking about how he doesn't believe in the resurrection of the body because he doesn't want an old decrepit body hanging on him for all eternity which itself touched ever so lightly on the meaning of pain. Essentially, he made a comment about pain being completely unnecessary, that "there's no reason for it whatsoever," which lead to me saying I disagreed fundamentally and that I didn't care to argue the topic of pain. So we moved on.

But I'd like to address it some here. )
jackofallgeeks: (Decepticons)
Four hours left before I clock out and go home. Getting closer to 3.5 now, and at least a bit of that is going to be in training (starting up again at 1300). I have every intention of napping when I get home, then maybe some Guild Wars and finishing off the last bit of "The Golden Compas." I also have a few posts I've been meaning to write up; if I can remember those, I'll try to motivate myself to getting them up.

Short week this week, with a trip up to Ocean City with the family at the end of it. half way through.

Paid rent today. My car needs an oil change. And a bath.
jackofallgeeks: (Default)
So. I have this Thesis Proposal bit that needs to be signed by all the mugwumps around here before the end of the quarter. The good news is that I was able to pick my thesis right off a list of projects they want done, and I'm fairly interested in it (and it just happens to coincide with the electives I've already taken, so w00t, and such). The bad news is that they neglected to tell me much of anything at all about the project aside from the one-line description on the list. I'm supposed to meet with my advisor (far too early) tomorrow morning to go over the crunchy bits of this proposal.

I'd been expecting to go in there tomorrow with a half-drawn proposal and say, "yeah, I don't know what I'm doing with this; what do you want me to do?" But this afternoon one of the ladies in our office sent out a "this is what the proposal is" with a blank template and pointers on what should generally go in each of the blanks. And so I've been (half-heartedly) working on it all afternoon, and aside from a couple points, it's almost a fully-feshed proposal. I'm down to just writing up a quick description of the problem and a 'preliminary bibliography' (which unfortunately will be empty, as I've had little idea what i'm doing, let alone that I should be reading up on things already) and everything will be filled out. So instead of "I'm totally lost," I'm going in there and saying, "what needs to be changed or added to meet your standards?" That's a much better foot to get started on.

Still don't know anything about my internship, but the Norfolk guys are now in touch with our HR department. So it's still looking really good, but I don't have anything official, so I don't know. And I hate not-knowing.

Anyways, we'll see how it goes. In the end, it just determines the timeframe I have for getting my stuff out of this apartment, getting plane tickets back East, and possibly finding an apartment out there.

Update 21:02 -- I've 'completed' my rough draft for my proposal, and I'm feeling pretty good. Now I'm going to drink my tea, play some video games, and get a good night's sleep.
jackofallgeeks: (Seriously Though)
You know? All things considered, I'm doing really nicely as far as finances go. I mean, I pay about 1/4 of my paycheck into rent every month, plus utilities and insurances. I feed myself, and not too badly if I say so myself (though, the nutritional value of my meals may be in question, but that's just because I don't know what I'm doing, and don't take the time to figure it out). I pay my credit bills aggressively, so that they're falling pretty swiftly and steadily. I live a lifestyle which admits to luxuries such eating out semi-regularly, entertainments like the movies and Friday Night Magic tournaments, and the ability to sate my impulse to buy books now and again. And even with all that, I've been able to bank a reasonably large savings, and haven't needed to dip into it for anything, yet.

So, yeah. Feeling alright about finances right now.
jackofallgeeks: (Displeased)
I hate finances and dealing with credit cards.

Fine print: I'm just now being charged for my City of Villains pre-order, and apparently for my brother's pre-order as well, and due to a lack of proper managing on my part (mostly because I expect a charge to post when I make it) this is causing sudden headaches with getting all sides to play nicely. Compounding this is the fact that I've moved since placing the orders, so all the 'billing address' stuff isn't matching up. I'm going to make tae.
jackofallgeeks: (Default)
Before I start, let me say that I don't mean to insult anyone, and I know we all have our own lives to live, things to see and people to do and all that. I'm just still in a sour mood from last night, and it's my journal, dam it.

I'm irritated.
My mom once (ha, once he says...) told me that I'm over sensitive. I would get upset (that means he cried, people) over the simplest things. She was right, to an extent, but it's more I take personally what people don't intend to be personal. If my mom was upset because the house wasn't getting picked up, I would take it as a personal affront and get upset because, dam it, I was picking up (that's a classic example).

Right now I'm isulted by the silence I've found online. No e-mails, but more pertinent to this journal, no comments. I don't mean that, not really - I DO have comments on here, but often it's just one short little comment, and where there's more than one, it's typical that I made half of them.
This really isn't a big deal, and it wouldn't irritate me so save for one thing - if I just wanted to reflectf, I could save myself quite a bit of time and effort just by writing in my REAL journal, or making a note-pad, or just talking to myself. I WRITE this because I WANT people to tell me what they're thinking. I'm not looking for false, sugar coated "everything's fine" posts, and I'm not fishing for compliments. I would just like SOMETHING to happen on my Journal.

Like I said, I'm still sour from last night, and due to the events of last night and my current mood now, I think I'm just under some kind of stress. Just that time of the month, I suppose.

An update on that thing last night - I've rather cooled off since then. Sour, yes, but not quite so upset. I remembered that the day after I went to Virginia Beach, I did talk with Emily, for actual minutes, and there are moments, like Young Fire, where I can almost see what we had once. I'm just really confused and scared. I don't like losing friends (especially pretty ones), I've done it far too often in my time.
jackofallgeeks: (Vash)
Er, I Mean Claire....

See what Care Bear you are.

But while I'm on the subject....
I need motivation for my story.See, I have a general character outline, and a general story flow but....I need material to work off of.

What this means is I'm asking for any possible input for this story. Beth, that means send me the flipping stories. As for anyone else, you can relate to me random story plots from movies or books or the like, or suggest songs that have an interesting flavor that could be incorporated, or just some elements (people, places, things, events) that you'd always thought would be cool in a story.

Uhm, I think that's about it.

Exerpt from a conversation with Austin-

poorqueer: that's all I can say now
poorqueer: "yup"
RoliasNoom: You went Straight?
poorqueer: no
poorqueer: why you ask?
RoliasNoom: ^_^ Proved you wrong.
poorqueer: lol
poorqueer: goof
RoliasNoom: i try

Little does he know that had he stayed true to form, I would proceed to tell him about this girl who'd be perfect for him. No, there is no girl, but I'd make a fair bet I could BS it well enough. ^_^
jackofallgeeks: (Contemplative)
A telemarketer called today.
Well, sorta.
It was one of those people who call around and ask for money. This one was for a Pro-Life group, and it was a girl on the line, and to that I attribute my weakness (both of them t'gether, not just that it was a girl. ^_-)

At first she asked for a donation of $100. Me being a full-time student, I told her I really had no money. But, she asked if, given three weeks, I could come up with a generous donation of $10. I said I'd think about it, at least 1/2 so she would leave me alone (I've been feeling sick t'day, though I'm feeling better). And so I'm getting an envelope in the mail in the next week asking me for $10. And, I'm really not sure if I intend to give them it or not. I mean, it is a cause I believe in, antways, and I'll prolly feel like an ass if I don't do it.

What's $10, anyways?
A pizza. A few nights of Chinese food. A weeks worth of movie rentals. A month's worth of sodas. Approximately 1+1/2 hours of work....

In the end, I'm sure one of two things will happen -
A) I'll do the right thing
2) I'll feel like an ass

The choices I must make.....
jackofallgeeks: (Contemplative)
Started cleaning my bookshelf up, mostly so I could put my RPG books away. John would be proud of me. If I ever finished.

Discovered I don't have class tomarrow until 1:00pm. Ah, joystuffs.

Beat the Second Final Challenge (isn't that a weird idea - a second final challege...)

Found my Voice-mail password. Now I can hear all those messages I've gotten since...well, since I met Claire, actually.

Got most of a shelf cleaned up. Yeah me. Only, what, five more t'go? I'll get to it.

KaZaA's got a stick shoved up it's USB port and now they say they're gonna start charging. Delete that, DL Morpheus. Just as soon as I write down what I'm getting off KaZaA. I'll get to it. Bastiches.

CAE Tools homework is due on Wednesday, but we don't have class. i'll see if the lab downstairs had AutoCAD. I'm getting a haircut, too. Maybe I should invest in a hat, to keep my lil head unfrozen.

Craving Chinese. Dam my empty bank account. Dam it to CHS.

Enough rambling. Maybe I'll go, uhm, do...something.

Oh well.
jackofallgeeks: (Default)
What did I do today...

Work from 12 till 8:00. That rather sucked, but not really - we had pizza and I earned about $64, so it's not like it was a waste.

Got home and then ran t'Gramma's cause I forgot my backback at her place last night, and that had my brush in it. No, I'm not some weird hair freak, but if I shower and wash my hair (which I do), I need that brush to tame the mane, you could say. Also took the oportunity to pick up a few more of my RPG books from over there, so I think I have between 1/2 and 2/3 of my Rifts Books with me now.

Uhm, what else... I think I sent an e-mail to Emily, though i'm sure it was too long. And I sent one to Becky, but I conciously tried not to make it too long, so it prolly looks bad, ne?

Talked with Claire, as well. Three more days (technically). Ah well, might as well head out. I'll see ya guys around.
jackofallgeeks: (Goofy)
My friend's page is so colorful now. See the happies, yeeeees. Purple, red, blue, white, 'black'.

But, I'm unsatisfied with my scheme for Daisysweet (that is, 'black' background and orange lettering). It looks too much like LJ-Maintainence. Anyone out there have any suggestions on how I could fix it?

Anyways, though, I've got Calc2 in 10 minutes, so I gotta jet. See you peoples around.
jackofallgeeks: (Goofy)

Well, I'm home. I think I like it here. Yeeeees. I think.

We're having spaghetti t'night. If there's anything I like more than spaghetti, it's, uhm...more spaghetti? Yeeeeeees....

I'm afraid I may not be on here much in the nest week. A dial-up with a single phone loine'll do that to ya. ¬_¬

But, yes, that means I may not a get a chance to read journals or post much on my own. The saddness....

But, just case i'm here, a recap of my past, uh, day? yesterday I was in bed at 2am, up at 5:30am, at the airport at 7am, off the ground at 9am, in Calfornia at 4pm (1pm over here) dinner at 10pm (7pm here) and in bed again at 5am (2am here). That means in the past, uh, two days I've had four hours of sleep. Yeeeees, it is the fun stuff. But I expected this, anyways. ^_^

Until we meet again, hasta la bye-bye. ^_^*


jackofallgeeks: (Default)
John Noble

August 2012

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