First Time for Anything

I read.  I read a lot.  Or at least I used to.

Any way, I have favorite authors (King, Rice, Poe, and more) and genres (horror, thriller, sci-fi, fantasy, mystery).  I remember growing up with books upon books in the house and weekly trips to the library.  Libraries were amazing to go to.  Even to this day I can find myself lost in the walls of books of a good library.  Grabbing a book and sitting on the floor to flip through it.  I instantly turn to a child.  So happy and care free.  Give me a good book, something to curl up on, and I’m set.  Perhaps a blanket or something to drink if you’re nice.

Out of all the genres out there I have never touched a romance novel.  I have read erotica, mind you, and I feel like they’re different enough.  Hell, I write erotica under the anonymous title on a few different fandom kink boards.  I use the veil of anonymity feel a little more secure and not care if my work is bad because, well, they can’t track me down.  They won’t know me by my actual name and they’re buried enough to not even link to me now, for the most part.  I have gotten compliments and urging to continue the drabble and I enjoy it!  My work, no matter what genre I attempt to write, has been a means of escape.  My imagination runs wild and the characters act these moments out.  Those sexual moments, secret as they are, are nicer once I get them out onto virtual paper.  As hooky as it sounds, I feel like I know myself better once I admit to certain things.

Yesterday on my newsfeed on the great Book of Face one of my old college buddies, a reader of  many books and librarian in the works, posted a link to a series and author she loved.  It was a romance series, which is common for her.  Usually I don’t pay much mind to those posts but I noticed that the first book of the series was free on the Kindle.  At that point a part of my mind chimed in and reminded me that I was having curiosities about romance novels.  I didn’t want to spend money on them, though, because it was uncharted water.  This was my chance!  Free book!  Can’t argue with that, can you?  Needless to say there is a copy of this book on/in my Kindle.  According to my digital buddy I am about 37% through the book.

Yeah.

I’m beginning to wonder if romance novels aren’t my thing or perhaps it’s the fact that I have read some quite a bit of erotica, but the book is proving to be of little interest.  Now it’s a medieval setting, the lead female is of Viking decent(didn’t know that going into the book but it was a pleasant surprise) and the lead males is a Norman knight.  Already seeming a little ‘romance novely’ in my book but I was giving a good go.  I’ve made head way, got to a scene with some third base action and finished that chapter.  I honestly don’t know what to think.  The book is written to be a quick read, no doubt, but it’s so rose-tinted glasses.  Now, I’ve read some stuff that has got me blushing and a little fidgety before and I honestly didn’t know what to expect.  There wouldn’t be anything raunchy, I knew better, but I guess I was waiting for something within me to stir(hurhur, okay I’ll stop).  I got nothing. I’m going to power through the book to see if it gets better once Husband/Knight guy gets some ‘proper’ action but who knows.  Romance novels are written for the average woman and it seems like fluffy, cuddly, hot under the collar type stuff is what to expect(I could be/probably am wrong). I mean even the atrocity that was 50 Shades wasn’t what it could have been, given to an author that knew how to spin a good yarn about bondage, S&M, and the like.  Who knows.

Was I too harsh?  I mean, I’m not trying to knock romance novels nor their fans.  I’m sitting here, a little sad honestly, that I didn’t find a new genre that I would enjoy.  A guilty pleasure that I would have to sneak because Grendal would look at me like I was crazy.  For now, I read on and venture to the areas of this vast internet that has erotica that I know I’ll enjoy.

The Tastes of Warmer Weather

There are certain things that remind me of warm weather for some reason.  Certain foods and drinks.  Fried pepperoni and coca cola, lemons and strawberries, anything grilled, and iced lattes.

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Don’t mind the freaky death’s face that appeared.

My adventures into latte art are slow going.  I’m getting a bit better with certain things but I can’t really DO anything.  I think it may be one of those ‘I’m trying too hard’ moments.  I think I just need do what I normally do and jump from there.  Who knows.

Speaking of warm weather it’s been oddly warm here in Northern Illinois.  I mean, for two days I’ve worn skirts that are more summer weather type deals.  Didn’t want to wear one today due to it being slushy and rainy outside and I am one for long flowie skirts.  Wishful thinking, I suppose.

This past session of Dungeons and Dragons went a little better than normal.  We got to our destination the previous session but we were finally able to ‘explore’ and by ‘explore’ I mean follow a trail and hide from things that could squish us.  Two other players, out of character, were wondering why we had followed after this particular NPC.  The question was towards me and I answered honestly.  ‘He has some information I want and no one disagreed with my suggestion.’  It’s all true.  Hunting down this character isn’t essential to ANYONE but me but the others just went along with it. I have been the de facto leader during the past two campaigns.  The one who comes up with the plans for where to go and everyone just rolls with it.  Last time it was nearly a party kill, but that’s how it goes.  Two people seem to remember it differently, saying they were the leaders of the group.  I suppose when it was during the political aspects of the game, yes, but when it came to questing I was more up front and pulling the party with me.

Meh.  We’ll see if we survive.

Trying my Hand

Working in a coffee shop is a blast.  Wonderful customers, the best employers I could hope for, and fellow workers that I enjoy being with.  And then there are the drinks.  The smell of coffee so early in the morning, the calm of it all before I open the doors and the owners arrive.  While I may not like rising at 430 in the am, it’s worth it in the end.

There is the possibility that I may achieve the title of store manager.  The owners have to discuss it but the wife of the duo has a main job as an accountant, and this is a busy season for her.  She told me she needed someone to field questions and get things done so she can have moments to work with her clients.  There would be a change in my schedule so I could for see shift changes.  I told her that I would have no problem any of it.  Now I wait and see what happens.

One of my coworkers, bless his heart(he is something else, but that’s another story), has started working on latte art.  He can make a heart, which is more than I can do.  I watch him though and I’ve found myself thinking that I could do it too.  I just feel awkward attempting such things in front of other people.  So here I am, watching videos and going over it in my head.  I think I’ll try my hand at some latte art in the morning tomorrow, before he arrives so I can save myself the embarrassment and his watchful eye. I don’t want to upstage him.  No. I was always one of those kids that wanted to hide my project or my skill until it was just right and than I would present it in it’s full glory!

So, if I achieve art be prepared for pictures.

Nerves of Steal!

I love horror movies.  LOVE THEM.  The horror genre in general is my buddy.  The majority of my PS2 games was survival horror based.  I had the Silent Hill games, Fatal Frame, Kuon, Haunting Ground, Rule of Rose, etc.  Nothing thrilled me more than sitting up late at night, lights out and Grendal sleeping, with one of those games going and the sound low.  Edge of my seat, heart racing.  Any little sound around me made me jump.  I was scared by our dog at the time, a big loveable ball of fluff named Lucky(a beautiful Huskie).  He managed to creep up the steps as quiet as can be, which is a feat in and of itself, and then come over to me.  I was crossing a bridge during a Fatal Frame 2 playthrough.  The bridge was over a body of water and this water logged ghost begins to emerge.  Cue wet sensation sliding down my arm.  Not wanting to wake Grendal, who had work in the morning,  I freak out silently and look down to see the dog happy as can be.

Horror movies could never get to me like games did.  I had so much invested in the game.  I was the one wandering through the abandoned town or building with little to keep me safe.  I had to run and hide or sneak past the creatures.  The breathing of the character matched mine in those moments and I felt like we were being pursued by the same thing.  Movies?  I usually feel more like I’m just  watching what happens, which is how it goes.  I know the cues.  The music changes or cuts out all together.  The characters themselves are tense and have a feeling that something is around.  Wait for it!  The thing jumps out, music crescendo, cue scream. Also, don’t forget to keep your eyes on things in the background!  There might be a shadowy shape, a face, or something in a mirror!! It had gotten to the point where I, and Grendal, could call the scares before they happen.  The downfall of anyone loving any genre I believe.

Now, this isn’t to say that I don’t enjoy horror movies.  I love them to no end.  Grendal isn’t much of a fan and puts up with a watching or two, but I’ve gone the route of having to view these things on my own.  He can be pulled into watching a Japanese horror flick (a personal favorite) but when he does watch, he is disappointed by the ending. It is a rare moment for Japanese horror movies to have a ‘happy ending’. ( I love it but he prefers the western take)

Along the line of horror is HP Lovecraft.  I love his work and the Cthulhu mythos.  I have a book of (a few) short stories, have watched the black and white film done by the Lovecraft Society, and have enjoyed my share of Delta Green games.  They’re not horrifying in any way but it’s an interesting peek into what was once considered disturbing and scary.

That is until I stumbled onto a movie called The Banshee Chapter.  It is a movie based of Lovecraft’s short story ‘From Beyond.’  It’s one I haven’t read and me being me, I was instantly interested due to the Lovecraft connection.  So I get my hands on a copy and play it.

(The following is my account of what I saw, as jumbled up as it is.)

Getting old news clips, interviews, etc.  Get some cam footage(I don’t care what anyone says, I love that stuff and Blair Witch was interesting in it’s time).  I like cam footage type movies.  A little closer to video games!  Dude takes a drug, friend films so dude can talk about what’s going on and get accurate notes for a book he’s writing. Nothing is happening, dude and friend a little dejected.  Creepy ice cream truck music starts playing(wtf?) followed by static and then a voice reciting numbers(Numbers station…..oooooooooo).  Dude and friend go downstairs trying to find source, which is a radio.  Dude stands there, window behind him, and says that something is coming.  Shadow dashes across the window.  Dude and friend freak out and the camera starts to cut in and out.  It’s obvious SOMETHING is chasing them but you can’t tell what.

Oh look a trail of blood! ‘This means something cool is gonna happen,’ I think to myself. Dude cuts into frame, face distorted with mouth open and black spaces for eyes.

Cue my reaction of hands flying to face and stumbling for the mouse when the film goes to black.  This was only about 9 minutes into the film.  The movie is still sitting on my computer, waiting for me to watch it.  All I can think is damn. I may have found something that will get to me!

Then again it’ll be my luck that I watch the rest of it unphased.