Thursday, October 14, 2021

October Sweeps - Day 621

Boy, winter came soon this year.  It only got to the mid-forties today, weather-wise.  But there was rain and lots of dark clouds, and plenty of chills.

I mention that because, years ago, my buddy Jeff and I (along with his younger son and my niece) went to the amusement park up north right before Halloween, and went on rides, then on to the various haunted houses the park had assembled (there were probably three or four).  Jeff speaks of that often, and since moving to Germany, hadn't been able to do that, but since he was here in October this year, we made it a point to at least try to get up there one day.

And today was the only day it would work out for his whole family (he's got three kids, now all grown, and a new daughter-in-law).  Unfortunately, it has been cold and wet all week long, but we were determined to make a go of it, and I was happy he wanted me to come along, so I bundled myself up, and met him at his little condo (he bought it in 2017, I believe, and two of his kids still live there), so we could drive up together.

Jeff makes a lot of money, more than anyone I know, but still, this was quite an expenditure, and he mentioned early on that he was buying.  A more moral person than me would have balked at that (since I'm not part of his family), but when I saw that tickets to get into the park were $75, my qualms melted away and I kept my mouth shut.

I've gone to this amusement park (about ninety minutes from my childhood home) for, I dunno, forty years or so, first going with my grandma and aunt, and while I love Disneyland more (I lived in La Mirada, California until I was three or so), it has always been a place of joy for me.

It was a cold day, especially for October, and the first two roller coasters I rode had tears running down my cheeks from the icy wind the motion caused.  It could have been worse, though--it had rained the day before, and being wet would've been absolutely miserable.  As it stood, I was able to walk around, stand in lines, and ride the rides without complaint . . . cold-wise, anyway.

Jeff is a pretty big dude, and there are a couple of rides he just doesn't fit on (there was also one with a weight requirement, which I had never noticed before, but he sat that one out).  He is game, though, to ride anything, and his favorite ones are the rides that shoot you straight up in the air and then drop you.  I have a real problem with those, and the last time the two of us went out together, I did force myself to ride it, and did not enjoy myself.

This time, though, my age was starting to show.  My favorite ride as a child was the one shaped like a pendulum, that goes back and forth, producing an unusual tinging sensation in the lower stomach area.  I used to be able to go on it a dozen times.  But this trip, about halfway through, it stopped feeling good, and I started feeling sick instead.  

We got off, I sat down for a moment, and all the kids ran off to ride a spinny ride with big swings.  Jeff couldn't go on it, so he kept me company, and I looked over at the kids getting on the swings, and suddenly didn't want to miss out.  I'll be okay, I thought.

Big mistake.

I ran over and got on the swings just before it started up, and had about eight seconds of enjoyment before the motion around me did horrible things to my body.  I had to spend the entire ride with my eyes tightly closed, willing myself not to throw up, and cursing myself for not sitting it out.

After that, I was pretty much screwed for the foreseeable future.  I sat down, but it didn't help.  I considered retching, but remembered how much Jeff had spent on lunch for everybody.  I walked with the group to the next ride and sat on a bench while they went on it.  The ride after that was another spinny one, so I decided to let them go on that one too without me.  It was another Jeff didn't fit on, so he hung out with me, and I was feeling better, so I said we could go on the little baby coaster next to us, that children go on.  He asked how nauseous I was, and I said, "Well, I was at 90% before, and now I'm down to fifteen or so."

We got on the baby coaster, and dammit, it took me back up to sixty or seventy again.

I decided I'd have to sit around now, not go on anything, until I felt completely back to normal, and that would take time.  Jeff's oldest offered me a motion sickness pill, so I went back to the parking lot to get one from the car, and that killed another half hour, during which, instead of going on another ride, the group waited for me.  Not sure why they did that.

They then went on the ride that shoots you into the air, while I and Jeff's daughter-in-law waited down below.  Eventually, I did start feeling better, but boy, what a drag--I never got back to 0% queasy, and I skipped half a dozen rides I would've enjoyed riding.

Sit-ups Today: 100
Sit-ups In October: 1495

I tried--I really tried--to get some words written tonight, but I fell asleep, over and over again.  I'd shake my head, curse myself, and type a word, and before the second word was even written, my eyes were closing again.  I feel really disgusted about it, but hey, I promise to do better tomorrow.

Push-ups Today: 111
Push-ups In October: 1689

Jeff REALLY loves the haunted houses, way more even than the roller coasters and rides, and we waited until the sun went down to start going to them.  There were five in all (plus two for little kids, with no scares, which we ignored, but it might have been interesting to walk through one), and I was a little bit bummed to not be scared in any way, or at any moment inside them.  Part of it was that I was with a big group, every one of us but one adults, but even when I got separated from them, and this girl dressed as a vampire took me alone into a fake elevator that shook and the floor display changed, there was never that thrill of believing it was all real.

Also, we were warned at the beginning of each haunted house that none of the performers were allowed to touch us, and that we weren't to touch them either, and you know, that definitely lessens the scariness of the whole thing (Jeff's kid said there are haunted houses out there where you can sign a waiver and then the actors are allowed to touch you [which may include gropings and light beatings], but there was no such option here).  My guess is that too many performers have gotten punched or fondled over the years, and us living in a global pandemic, has made this year way more strict than it was in my day.

But the biggest factor, I'm sorry to say, is that pretty much every one of these actors was a teenager or barely out of high school.  And it's hard to be intimidated by a Grim Reaper whose got braces on.


On the drive home, I discovered that Box Office Mojo still has the various Genres lists we used to enjoy perusing, and I quizzed Jeff on stuff like the top ten movies in the Slasher, or Werewolf, or Prequel categories.  It's the sort of fanboy intellectual pastime a couple of guys who don't get wasted or do drugs do to entertain themselves, and his son, who was also in the car with us, was probably in a personal hell.  But ah well.

Finally, I sat down to record the end of "Underdecorated," and the first thing I said was, "Wow, I am so tired, I'll be lucky to get a hundred words written."  Within five minutes, I was slurring my speech and doing that thing where there are long pauses in between sentences.  But you know, it was the effort that counted.

Words Today: 107 (yeah, that's bad.  But it's not zero.  Not quite)
Words In October: 9214

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

October Sweeps - Day 620

Marshal Latham, months ago, suggested we watch a movie called THE SKULL (an Amicus production from 1965 with Peter Cushing in it) for Halloween.  I didn't care one way or the other, but here we are, right before the deadline, and I had never tracked it down (I believe it had been available to stream for free back when he suggested it, but no longer).  Luckily, Jeff's library in his town (we live in adjoining cities) had a copy, so he checked it out.

While we were watching, Jeff's dad came over, having dropped his granddaughter's car off at the shop and needing to wait.  He sat down on the couch and watched THE SKULL with us.  At one point, I looked over at the old guy, and saw this look of pained revulsion on his face.  I realized that, while Jeff and I can watch bad horror movies together and get a big kick out of it, this poor dude was in his own personal Hell, complete with pitchforks and Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes.  

His dad got a call that the car was ready, so he took Jeff's niece off to pick up her car at the shop.  Afterward, I mentioned the miserable look I'd witnessed to Jeff, and he said, "Oh, that had nothing to do with the movie.  That's just what my dad looks like all the time."  

I don't know if that's better or worse.

Sit-ups Today: 111
Sit-ups In October: 1395

Push-ups Today: 111
Push-ups In October: 1578

I left writing to the absolute last minute (as usual), and even though it FEELS like I write a lot at two in the morning, the word count never equals what it was in my head.

Words Today: 690
Words In October: 9107

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

October Sweeps - Day 619

I'm in the library, and I've spent nearly every moment blogging.  

Now, that's not a sin or anything (or even that big of a waste of time), but I'm supposed to be writing, and so far, I have about two hundred words.  I keep finding reasons not to write (oooh, I only spent ten minutes on Facebook today, maybe I could check that again!), and that's the difference between me and you, except for how thoroughly attractive you are, I mean.

Sit-ups Today: 100
Sit-ups In October: 1284

Remember about five minutes ago (actually months) when I blogged about talking to a girl who didn't know who Madonna was?  There was a similar My-God-I-Am-Old moment today when I was talking to a young woman/girl who described getting surgeries on both sides of her neck, to which I made a stupid joke, "When they revived you, the doctor shouted, 'It's alive!'" in my best Colin Clive impression.

Well, she chuckled and told me she got that reference.  I was quoting SHREK 2, she said.

I did not correct her, but still.

Push-ups Today: 100
Push-ups In October: 1467

Words Today: 907
Words In October: 8417

I did finish editing an episode of the Dunesteef today, so that's something.  Guess I should start on the new "Delusions" show--there's always more podcasts to get to.

Rish Outcast 207: Jerry Bundler

Rish presents W.W. Jacobs's 1908 ghost story "Jerry Bundler."

Note, due to circumstances beyond your control, I've had to bump this episode up in place of the one I keep having to delay.

To download the episode, Right-Click HERE.

To support me on Patreon, click HERE.

Logo by Gino "Hairy Chundler" Moretto.

Monday, October 11, 2021

October Sweeps - Day 618

Another week started.  It looks like I won't be able to go to the cabin this week.  Which isn't the end of the world, but I so, so enjoy it.

I spied this in the parking lot:

"Out on the road today, I saw a Meeseeks sticker on a mini-van."
--Don Henley

I keep hanging out with Jeff, who is in town for longer than he's ever stayed before.  He is usually so wiped out by jet lag (he claims that he wakes up between four and five am every single day, regardless of what time he goes to sleep, and I am reminded of several uncles who do the same thing . . . not sure what causes it) that he can't enjoy his visits, and since this cost so much (he hinted at the price to fly him and his wife over and back and it turned my right buttock white), he decided to double the amount of time he usually stays.

We've watched, I believe, four episodes of "Supernatural" together, having started the show about ten years back, and have now reached the mid-point of the Tenth Season.  At this rate, by 2030, we'll have finished the whole thing.

While we were watching together, he got a phone call from his mom, telling him that his aunt and uncle had been killed in New Mexico: they had pulled their car over on the side of the freeway and it had been struck by a truck.  This sort of call is hard to hear, but I think everybody gets one like it at some point in their life.  It put a bit of a damper on our enjoyment of the adventures of Sam and Dean Winchester.*

Sit-ups Today: 111
Sit-ups In October: 1184

Push-ups Today: 111
Push-ups In October: 1367

Words Today: 403
Words In October: 7510

*In hunting down a photo of the Winchesters to put up top (I was SURE I had already done one in the past, but I couldn't find it), I stumbled across a staggering amount of Sam/Dean slash-fiction.  It seems that everybody in this country, except for me, wants these two brothers to have sex with each other at some point in time.  It's so weird to find myself on the outside of some kind of kinky fetish like this.

Sunday, October 10, 2021

October Sweeps - Day 617

I got very close to finishing my reading of "Underdecorated" today.  One more session is all it will take.  As often happens with these things, I was a bit disappointed that certain parts didn't work as well on paper as they did in my mind, but I was also pleased that I answered the question of just what was going on with the townsfolk, instead of leaving it sort of nebulous at the end.

I hope other people like the story too.

Sit-ups Today: 100
Sit-ups In October: 1073

Push-ups Today: 100
Push-ups In October: 1256

And speaking of "Underdecorated," I went to the dollar store again, looking for some kind of cheap decoration I could buy and tear in half for the cover art.  Nobody sells the old green and white plastic skeletons I've been looking for for a month, but I found a "Happy Halloween" sign, went ahead and bought it, and tried to tear it in half when I got it home.

I couldn't tear it.  It wasn't made of paper or cardboard, but some kind of plastic.  So, I just took a box cutter and sliced it in half.  I hope the art looks properly torn in two.

Words Today: 593
Words In October: 7107

P.S. One last thing: I did a search for "skeleton decoration" to stick on the top of this post, and the auto-fill (you know, that helpful thing the internet does where it tries to predict what you're going to say so you don't have to type it out) suggested "Sheldon the Wonder Schlong."  Thanks, internet . . . you truly are a friend of mine.

Saturday, October 09, 2021

October Sweeps - Day 616

I did hit the library today, but it was right before it was closing, and that was my own fault: I fell asleep while editing in the afternoon, and barely got any writing in because of it.  But that's my fault, not anybody else's.

Sit-ups Today: 100
Sit-ups In October: 973

I was disappointed to see that NO TIME TO DIE opened way below where I thought it would.  The studios always underestimate what their movies will do so they can say things "overperformed" or "did better than our wildest dreams," but this one was a fairly standard opening (not a bomb or anything), when I expected it to skyrocket, based, I guess, on how much I was looking forward to it (and based on how hugely VENOM 2 did).

But they say that 57% of Bond's audience was older, and the older you get, the less likely you are to go out to the movies, so I guess that's some kind of plausible explanation.

Push-ups Today: 100
Push-ups In October: 1156

Words Today: 692
Words In October: 6514

Friday, October 08, 2021

October Sweeps - Day 615

So, after eighteen whole months of delays*, it came out.  Tonight, I saw NO TIME TO DIE tonight with Jeff's whole family.

The film was good, and takes great pains to end the series started in CASINO ROYALE, bringing things full circle, and eliminating any plot threads left.  And I'm very glad I saw SPECTRE again right before seeing this, so I could appreciate the references in there (the prologue, for example, would've meant little to me had I not heard about it in the last film on Sunday).  In some ways, it redeems some of the shortcomings SPECTRE had when we all thought it was the last Daniel Craig film, and definitely closes the door on this iteration of Bond.

Because it was delayed so long (the copyright at the end was 2020, which made me wonder if it has sat, unchanged since February of that year), Eon Productions missed the chance of having yet another Bond film for next year, which is the character's filmic 60th anniversary, but there's no doubt another one is coming down the pike.  I only hope they don't choose to reboot it with another origin/first mission story, and just do it like they used to, with an unfamiliar face in the character's shoes, but the assumption that we know who he is and what his world is all about.

Probably, though, they will feel the need to recast everybody and everything, and start with his recruitment into MI-6, which is an irritating trend in filmmaking (though I suppose the Ben Affleck Batman didn't get a new "first adventure," and they didn't kill Uncle Ben again with the Tom Holland Spider-man).  It would be nice if they introduced Alec Trevelyan as a fellow agent and friend to Bond, since I like stuff like that, but that's probably problematic too . . . it's better to just continue the series and set things up for the future with new characters.

Sit-ups Today: 100
Sit-ups In October: 873

One of my goals for the month of October is to get more push-ups and sit-ups in than I did in September.  Because I got sick for a few days last month, this should be a piece of cake . . . except that I've stopped doing the add-one-to-the-highest-number-of-push-ups-I've-done thing, which was going for months.  In the end, I fear that the sit-ups (which are hard) will be easier to do than the push-ups (which are easy)

Push-ups Today: 100
Push-ups In October: 1056

I finished my Walt Disney book.  It was sad, because I'd really poured through it, and I don't usually get seven hundred page books read in such a short period of time.  I was sorry when he got sick there at the end, because he was still fairly young, and had so many plans ahead of him (many, if not most, of which would never be carried through after his death), and he reportedly said his big fear was that he'd be remembered for creating a damn mouse.

Words Today: 438
Words In October: 5822

*Look at that poster up there.  April 2020.  Though, back when Danny Boyle was directing it, it was supposed to be February 2020.  And I think, when it was first announced, it was supposed to come out in November of 2019.

Thursday, October 07, 2021

October Sweeps - Day 614

Holy pee, we're a whole week into October!

I didn't wake up during the night at all, so when I woke up in the morning, and it was already light outside, I figured I had slept right up to when my alarm was going to go off, as I sometimes do when I've been out late.  I turned on the laptop to try to get some blogging done, and as I did so, the sun started to rise beyond the trees outside . . . so it wasn't nearly as late as I'd imagined.  That pleases me, because I'll have a couple of extra hours here today to make up for having to leave well before it gets dark.*

I wish I felt inspired with this story and could put my head down and just barrel into it.  I might give it a break and see if I can't get back into last year's Will Choner story instead.

Sit-ups Today: 111
Sit-ups In October: 773

So, I listened to Marshal's Patreon address last night, as is a tradition for me when I'm cooking or making a fire up here, and he made a goal to go on walks to get some exercise, and hopes to do it every single day for the rest of the year.  I wish him luck, but that sort of thing seems extremely difficult (he also set a goal to drink no more soda for the rest of the year, and I ought to sit him down and ask him if he loves soda as much as I do**), but he had the idea that he could record little podcasts for his fans while he went on his walks, as a bonus (sort of like multi-tasking).

So I thought I would send him a couple of topics, ask him a question and let him speak about it, in case he needed inspiration.  I don't know why I do stuff like this, but once I sat down, I couldn't stop talking, and each thirty second prompt ended up being about five minutes long.  Sigh.  And it was just so I could make fun of his love for Kelly Clarkson.  Sigh again.

Push-ups Today: 166
Push-ups In October: 956

I spent the morning before my alarm went off editing audio for "Underdecorated," and I am starting to worry about how unlikeable Katy is (as I mentioned yesterday).  I personally find her pretty delightfully acerbic, and am reminded of how Emma Stone was in EASY A, who remained likeable despite thinking she was better than everyone around her.***  I guess it takes a certain level of actress to never lose you, even when being less than respectful.  It's a thin line to walk upon, but I guess I'm writing a character that basically chooses to die of a plague just to own the libs.

Anyhow, the text version had a blank in it when the county sheriff says, "Hello, I'm Sheriff ____," and in my recording session, I spent two minutes trying to think of a name that Katy could find amusing.  Finally, I decided to call him Sheriff Spoonauer, and the nosy neighbor lady Sandra, and went ahead with the recording.  But in editing it today, I discovered the sheriff already had a name in an earlier scene (Sheriff Cantrell) and the neighbor lady was given the rather musical name of Melody Abegg.  So, now I'll have to go back and re-record the bit with "Cantrell," though I much prefer Melody to Sandra.  These are things that are interesting to me, and cannot in any way be interesting to you.

But, if I haven't lost you YET, let me seal the deal with this: Katy's little brother's name is, ugh, Tevin.  And it never occurred to me that the family's last name was the Smiths, so when the sheriff (Spoonauer!) asks for the boy's name, he says Tevin Smith, and it sounds so much like the stoner filmmaker Kevin Smith, that I considered changing the family's last name, despite having five whole chapters already recorded with "Smith" in it.

What?  You're still here?  Even after that?

Okay, let me seal the deal.  I discovered I had used the word "affronted" twice in the story, and it's eating me up inside.  Since I have to go back and re-record anyway, I'm trying to find a word (other than "offended") that I can substitute for the second one.  And I condemn Walt Disney for being an unreasonable perfectionist.

After that, I did jot down a page or two on my Christmas tale (which I'm calling "There'll Be Scary Ghost Stories") and half a page or so on a Lara & the Witch bit where she's taking her driver's test (there's a good chance it'll never be used, but it still counts as words).

Words Today: 1499
Words In October: 5384

*You know this already, but I am extremely paranoid about deer on the road, ever since there was that horse-sized elk standing in the highway last year.  And it's not really paranoia, is it, if I see deer run across the road literally every other time I drive home from here, and actually ruined my last car running over one, right?

**Again, you've heard this already, but soda used to be one of my three FAVORITE things in the world.  This was in 2018 or 2019 that I realized this, and I tried to think of what the other two would be, and decided that talking about movies with my friends had to be right up there with Pepsi.  And then I had my mid-life thing, I met that girl, and my priorities changed, and started drinking sugar-free soda (to the point where, on the rare occasion, maybe once a month or less often, that I taste a regular Pepsi or Pibb Extra, it tastes too sweet and overpoweringly cloying to my buds.  So sad).  But now that she's gone, I decided yesterday that I now love donuts slightly more than I do her, and soda's not even up there anymore.  Don't get me wrong, I still NEED to drink soda, but I don't really want to, kind of like blowing my nose or wearing a facemask.

***I remember a friend of mine (cue thunderclap) using the term "slut-shaming" a few years ago, a concept I'd never heard before.  I didn't ask her what it meant, but in my mind, I thought of a puritanical village, where stockade had been built to put amorous young women in so they could be threatened with hellfire and overripe vegetables.  It wasn't until I saw how Amanda what's-her-name was in EASY A that I understood what Abbie was talking about.

Wednesday, October 06, 2021

October Sweeps - Day 613

Back to the cabin already.  It was raining like a sunny day in Oregon when I woke up this morning, and my mom was aghast that I was still going to the cabin* but I know it's going to be too cold soon (she pressured my brother to winterize this place already, just in case it freezes early), and I'll miss the heck out of it.

It was cold when I got here, and it's cold now.  I finally brought my Robert E. Howard Conan book with me (which I'd been promising Tom Tancredi I'd do all summer), and sat down on the couch to record a story . . . and promptly fell asleep.  Heck, if I were smart, I'd delete that whole twenty minute recording and do the first chapter again, because I know it'll be mostly infuriating, unusable outtakes.

I sat down before I'd even turned on the electricity or tried (and failed) to make a fire in the stove and wrote a couple of paragraphs on my Dead & Breakfast Christmas story.  I think what I need to do is go outside and shovel gravel tomorrow, and see if I can't think of three ghost scenarios I could write about in the story.  But since I'm still writing every darn day, I may not have that luxury.

Sit-ups Today: 100
Sit-ups In October: 662

I did sit down and re-record the first four sections of "Underdecorated," and I started editing the new stuff today.  The main character of Katianna, who is (I believe) sixteen, is pretty cold and selfish and unlikeable, and I know that I played that up in my narration.  But I wonder if I went too far with it.  

I remember Jamie Lee Curtis telling us at a screening of HALLOWEEN in Hollywood that she went to see the film with friends when it came out in 1978, and at one point, when Laurie Strode stupidly decided to go back into danger toward the end of the film, one theatergoer shouted at the screen, "You stupid bitch, you deserve to get killed!"  We all laughed, but ever since that day, I've sat up and paid attention to what I call You Stupid Bitch You Deserve To Die moments (I've probably even talked about it on this blog).

I'm currently reading (in between Walt Disney sessions) a Sarah J. Maas (YA?) Fantasy book with a super-willful female protagonist who is utterly incapable of taking the advice of others or keep out of other people's business, and there have been two or three moments in the book where I have shouted, "You stupid bitch, you deserve to die!" which is how I always say it.

And you see where I'm going here, right?  Katianna is headstrong and insensitive, and I wouldn't be at all surprised if that audience member shouted the same thing when reading my story.  See, she's supposed to learn a lesson in the story, so I had her be self-absorbed and kinda catty when we first meet her, but she discovers a bit of steel and compassion within herself as the story goes along.  By the end, I would hope that the audience no longer roots for her death, and wants her to succeed in something.

You never know, though.  The Sarah Maas book (this is the first of her works I've ever read) almost had me turning it off early on, when someone tells the protagonist, "Whatever you do, don't light a candle at midnight and turn around three times while chanting 'Ricardo Montalban!'" and guess what she goes and does thirty seconds after the old housekeeper tells her this?  I'd hate to be responsible for that sort of thing . . . except I didn't turn it off.  Or at least, not for long.

Push-ups Today: 100
Push-ups In October: 790

Unfortunately, I didn't get any more words written before I got too tired.  You see, I forced myself to finish the Howard Conan story, and it was a super long one (I'm sure, when it first appeared in a pulp magazine, they touted it as a "new novel by Robert E. Howard!" on the cover), and this may amuse you, it got darker and darker in the room the longer I went, making it harder and harder to narrate.  I had my phone plugged into my laptop in the other room, and I could hear it connecting through the wall, and every time it did, the lights dimmed a little (so strange, but I guess we're at the time of the year where the solar collectors don't get enough sun to keep everything going all at once.

Words Today: 552
Words In October: 3885

*I swear, one day she's going to drive up on a day I'm not here and see an entire harem of blow-up dolls all sitting around a table having tea and say, "Ah, so that's why he comes up here so often."

Tuesday, October 05, 2021

October Sweeps - Day 612

Here in town, the local movie theater chain does a five dollar Tuesday deal (they have for the last five or six years), so my cousin and I had decided to wait until tonight to see VENOM 2.  It opened on Friday to the biggest premiere of the pandemic (previous record-holder was BLACK WIDOW), and it got a--gasp!--almost good 60% on Rotten Tomatoes!

So I drove over with my nephew to get tickets (he had overslept his alarm on Monday, so he was grounded from going to any movies with me--and our tickets were for ten pm anyway, so I'd have said no even if he were my kid and I was in charge), and my cousin and I met at the theater at ten.

And guys, I know a 60 on the Tomatometer is significantly better than the 30% the first movie got, but hey, 60 is being pretty generous.  For such an ugly, meandering, unpleasant, and logic-free film, it astounds me that anybody liked it, let alone the vast majority of people I've heard from.  And my cousin, who admitted it wasn't great (but still enjoyed it), tried to defend the way Carnage looked in the movie, saying that was exactly as he'd seen the character drawn.  But dude, there was usually something charming and well-designed about Carnage in the books--this thing just looked like the Parallax turd from GREEN LANTERN had a baby with the Blob.  

The CG for Carnage was pretty excellent, though.  It's sure to get an Oscar nomination in 1997.

Sit-ups Today: 100
Sit-ups In October: 562

Push-ups Today: 100
Push-ups In October: 690

As far as writing goes, I went to the library for the first time in a while, and pounded out a few words on my Christmas story.  I'm not saying they were good words, though.

Words Today: 1373
Words In October: 3333