Friday, March 30, 2007

grandpa dream 4 Manik 0 Uayeb intention portal
Welcome to the dead days. I started mine off with a weird dream.
I was an adult in the dream, not sure how old, but with a friend of mine I'll call J. I haven't seen her in years; she moved out of state.
My great-grandpa (who died of emphysema when I was 11) was sick and I wanted to go see him. I had just been to see him with my grandma (his daughter-in-law; he was my mother's father's father) but I wanted to go see him by myself. And J drove me, but didn't come in with me.
When I saw him the day before, he'd been in a room right across from the nurse's station, right where you come in. But that room had someone else in it. I asked and they said he was in room 108, upstairs. The stairs were not at all hospital like. They were a great tier of riser-less slabs with many landings and 90 degree turns. I just looked at them. A doctor came up and said "she doesn't like backless chairs, she won't like those stairs, take the elevator." By backless chairs he meant the kind without back legs. (The pictured chair is from Ikea.)
I went up the elevator and found my Big Poppy (that's what I called him) in a room by himself. I thought he had had some kind of stroke or something. I sat with him and held his hand and he started telling me something (can't remember what) and in the middle of a sentence, with no fanfare whatsoever, he died. I sat there for a moment thinking he was just gathering his thoughts but he was gone. I saw his x-ray displayed nearby. Except that it wasn't a black and white regular x-ray, it was in full color and looked more like the scans you see on TV that they do of mummies. And it showed that my Big Poppy's sternum had been crushed into small pieces (how could he even breathe?) and many of his other bones--just about all the big ones--were also broken. I had no idea how the damage happened but he had been moving and not in any apparent pain. I went and told the "she doesn't like stairs" doctor that Big Poppy was dead and not knowing what else to do, went back to J's car. She had moved it from where I left her. I found her peeing in a public bathroom (a one-seater) but for some reason she had left the door open and anyone could see/hear her. And she was peeing really loudly. She laughed that I saw/heard her but wasn't really embarrassed.
We got in her car and went to some kind of meeting with a bunch of others, in a library or similar space, but one where we could talk. The "stairs" doctor came in and said he wanted to help us deal with our grief. But only I was sad; no one else knew my great-grandpa. Then he changed the subject and started talking about drugs. He put a bowl on the table between me and J (we were sitting across from each other). It had little packages in it, like origami, but tiny. He instructed us to take a packet, open it, and take the drug inside "to see what it felt like." So like idiots we all did. The drug was some kind of amphetimine (not meth) and right away we all got hyper. (Which doesn't happen when I take amphetimine based diet pills, but we'll let that slide.)
The doctor kept talking about the dangers of drugs but we were all high and ignoring him. J grabbed a bunch of the packets and took more amphetimine before anyone could stop her. She was acting really wild. The doctor tried to restrain her by grabbing her but she just kept going for the bowl. No one else knew what to do. He hauled her off and I left and went somewhere with my mom. Not sure if she knew her grandfather had just died.
We went to a used book/cheap book place. There was a really long table of books and we started looking. Some DVDs were mixed in. I found a 30 second "welcome to Stephen King's World" DVD and next to it was a weird medal. I couldn't really read it, it looked really old. Then I saw that along the top of the stacks were--toys? models? miniatures? don't know how to describe them--of the Inquisition. Like the Inspector General, a head Torturer, etc. Collect the whole set. The medal had come from one of them.
For whatever reason, my mom and I got on a bus. My mom started talking about J and how weird she had been acting when my mom saw her earlier. I didn't want to say that she was high. (No matter how old you are, some things you just can't say in front of your mom.) A guy I know from the ASC got on the bus and started talking to me. My mom knew him too, but not as an ASC person, and thought it was strange that we knew each other. In the distance I saw someone chasing J through a field. The ASC guy noticed and said something like "she's not feeling well today." And I thought that was an understatement.
I'm not sure what I got at the bookstore--I think it was a book, not a DVD. I remember a little of it. This dark-haired girl with a newborn baby was dressed in some kind of ancient middle-eastern costume (but I don't think she was middle-eastern). She was in a fight with someone. In full costume, with her baby also in costume and a little boy who was a friend of hers or maybe a brother, they were sitting on cushions on top of an advancing tank. A framework around them held billowing brightly colored silk like a curtain or backdrop, but those coming at the tank could see them clearly. The tank met the resistance on a bridge (a modern bridge, like the one over the Connecticut River on I-95, but not so high up) and the girl had to jump, along with the little boy, and throw her baby into the water. They all survived. The girl found a big blue piece of something floating and pulled herself on it. The baby and the boy just swam back to shore. It took her forever to drift that far. When she got to the shore she was dirty and muddy and there was a small fish in her shoe. She watched it flop around and thought she should put it back into the water, but she was too tired to move and it died.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

150 years of the Mayan-Aztec calendar 2 Chicchan 18 Cumhu
Technically, my vast undertaking, of documenting the Mayan-Aztec calendar correspondences for 150 years, is finished. I made the PDF this morning in hopes of putting it online tonight.
I make PDFs all the time at work. A full-color full page (11"x17") pdf takes 90-120 seconds (1 1/2-2 minutes) to distill (make into a PDF from the source file). I knew this would take some time. I had 15 documents (10 years each) plus a cover page.
Distilling this monster took over an hour. And because Acrobat repeatedly asked me questions, I had to sit there and babysit.
The final document was....drumroll please....1013 pages. Yes, ONE THOUSAND THIRTEEN pages. It's a 6 mb PDF. I can't possibly put that online. And that's as small as I can make it--each day is reduced to 1 line of 9 point landscape text. But 150 years, that's something like 55,000 lines.
So I'm going to have to make a series of smaller PDFs (probably 10 years each). That means I lose the ability to link between the decades. But what else can I do? Who wants to wait for a 6 mb PDF to load just to look up one date?
So it will be a couple more days before it's up and searchable.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

the "how are you" condundrum 4 Cumhu 1 Chuen (assimilation)
The other day it occurred to me that people don't care how you are. They say it, but if you respond with anything other than a platitude, they get annoyed. We have a new guy at work and the other morning he came in and asked how I was. Without thinking it through, I responded honestly: "I have a headache." He was on his way by my desk.
He stopped. I could see his mind churning. Now I have to stand here and talk to her about her headache.
It's as if by answering his question I placed a burden of further response on him that he had no interest in.
But to say "I'm good, how are you?" puts me into the same bind. If I don't care enough about him to tell him the truth about how I am at that moment, then I don't care how he is. I don't care about his headache, his dead dog, his bitchy girlfriend (whatever, making up examples).
I think "how are you" should be outlawed unless the person asking CARES about the answer and wants to invest time in discussing it.
"Good Morning" (and any other "good" greetings and salutations, including "have a nice day") are also stupid. They are mere politeness and have no emotion or energy behind them. Do any of the people who wish things labeled with "good" or "nice" onto me really care? No. They are words.
Let's stick with "hello" and "goodbye" shall we? Then again, some evangelicals want people to say "heaven-o" rather than that horrible other "h" word (hell). And of course, for the atheists to complain about, the original meaning of "goodbye" was "God be with you" so that's pretty offensive too. So what do we say? Sciby? (Science be with you) and Earth0 (rather than get heaven OR hell involved)?
So, Sciby and Eartho to you.

Friday, March 09, 2007

Jaguar Nights 2008 calendar & Myspace 19 Kayab 9 Cimi
I'm working on Jaguar Nights 2008. It's going to be in a different format; instead of a wall calendar it will be a 5.5" x 8.5" desk/briefcase/purse calendar, with 80 pages rather than 36. 1 week per page (2 weeks per spread) plus the rest of the pages will have all the extra information and more from last year. Full color cover--a drawing of a jaguar I'm still working on--and hopefully available everywhere, not just through Amazon. The price will be slightly higher (probably $15 vs $13) because of the additional costs to print so many pages.
I still have (very few) 2007 calendars left. Order through the link to the right or through my website.

I am putting together JN 2008 while perched on a 75 cm bright green yoga ball with my cat on my shoulder, on my chest, on my neck...basically on me, purring and being cuddly. So if you've seen me lately, and seen that my neck and throat area are scratched up, you know why. I tried putting those plastic nail caps (fake nails for cats) on Nutter's back feet and he would rip them off. I'd put them back on, he'd pull them off. Finally I got the hint and gave up and I just bleed for his affection. He misses Zen so much. And so do I. It's been 7 months.
ASIDE: If you are interested in using a yoga ball as a chair (it's very good for your back and abs and it burns calories because you have to shift constantly to keep your balance) this is an awesome one. Burst strength of 1100 lbs means no fear of popping from having an over-large butt (like I do). Only comes in green (the purple one is 65 cm--I have that one too, for watching TV on). I sound like an ad...I'm not, I promise. I just like it a lot.
I have also started a Jaguar Nights myspace page: Basically its blog is a clone of my Jaguar Nights blog--I'm just doing it to network and find more customers/more interested people. Not much on it yet, but if you've got a myspace page feel free to add me as your friend. I've got a "personal" page too, just cuz.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Happy burner day

Tomorrow is 3 Ahau, a burner day and the last day of the first half of the Tzolkin.
Today a bus fell off an overpass in Atlanta and killed a bunch of people even as some sort of bizarre hybrid tornado-blizzard thing raged across Alabama and Georgia eating people like grapes.
I've found that burner day effects spread across a couple of days, like ripples. 2 Cauac 12 Kayab