What was I thinking ..naming that other day “Day One”.  Eff that!  Yesterday was the real Day One.


The Dog:

Yesterday was the day Dennis took off to Texas early in the morning.  Yesterday was the real Day One of however many days it takes before the kids and I can also move to Texas and we can all be together again.  And for being the first day, it was a really shit day too.  First, I realized that during his packing, Dennis left the door to the garage open long enough to allow Appa (our dog) to roam around, pee, and shit in there.  This is a problem because there is rat poison in the garage that was planted by our exterminator 3 weeks ago.  We all knew we could not let the dog into the garage for any length of time.  For 2-3 weeks we knew this but I guess it slipped his mind …all night.  Needless to say I’m still angry with him over it.  When I realized this at around 11am yesterday (just 2 hours after Dennis drove away), it began a marathon of vet visits, phone calls, driving around, whatever it took to get Appa the medicine he needed to work as an antidote for the rat poison.  I had no idea if he actually ate any of the poison, but I wasn’t about to sit around and wait to see if he was going to start dying in the next 2 days.  By then, it would be too late. 

I guess my experience with losing my dog Scully 8-9 years ago to rat poisoning has taught me that there is no such thing as an overreaction to this situation.  I was gonna do whatever I had to do and not for me and not for the dog, even, because he’s already old but for the kids.  I didn’t want them to have to deal with losing our dog after they had just “lost” their dad for an indeterminate amount of time.  Nah, who am I kidding, I don’t want to lose our dog either.  How could I begin what I want to be a successful 3 month plan with the death of our dog?  He’s a really really good dog too and is worth the effort and money to save him.  So I spent 7 hours away from the house and away from my kids to take care of Appa.  I was worried the whole time too because this was the longest my daughters had ever been left alone to care for their little brother.  At 2 years of age, Ethan is a BIG handful right now.

Getting the vitamin K1 tablets was a huge problem because both CVS and Walgreens told me there was no generic version of the pills and that 140 pills would cost me upwards of $9k.  I don’t care how much we love Appa there just was no way I would pay that amount for a few pills. I had to find non-human grade pills. After several hours of running around and making phone calls, my vet found another animal hospital that had them in stock so I headed over there.  2 hours later, I had my pills and Appa had been given a shot of VitK1 by then so he was safe for the moment. I also ordered a bottle of vitamin k1 for dogs online which would complete the treatment.   The entire debacle cost us just over $500.   I’m still so angry at Dennis that he let this happen.  I’m not even mad over this one incident.  I’m angry that he doesn’t listen to me.  Like ever.  (Ok, not really ever but I’m still mad so… I’m allowed to exaggerate)


The Kids:

When Dennis was saying goodbye to the girls, Maya became very upset and I swear I saw a flicker of emotion from Jada too.  That girl is like me pre-pregnancies when it comes to emotions. She inherited that Vulcan gene.  She feels sadness but she just internalizes it and it feels like a far away thing until it’s not.  And that, we have little control over.  It’s not easy allowing emotions to boil over much.  It just doesn’t happen naturally.  Extra effort has to be made before it can happen. Anger and a sense of injustice has a much greater chance of invoking an emotional response and tears than sadness does. Me at funerals was always a challenge.  I mean how do you demonstrate you give a shit about the person who died unless you’re seen shedding a tear?  How do you shed a tear on demand?  It takes effort to think about things so grim that you overwhelm yourself with emotion long enough to make water spill from your eyes.  This skill is really hard to master.  If she’s like me, Jada won’t figure out how to do that until her 30’s.  But however you cut it, I know that both of the girls felt the departure of their dad in their own way and my vigil began then to keep them safe and happy, all on my own.  And then the dog happened.

I do have family an hour away but for all intents and purposes, I may as well be in Texas right now and alone.  I feel a need to not rely on anyone for help not because I don’t want to bother anyone, but because I feel I have relied on Dennis too much.  I’m not sure when I became less self sufficient because I always had been pre-babies.  It’s in my DNA to be self reliant. It’s not that I ever felt I wasn’t capable, I just stopped practicing it.  Laziness.  Convenience.  Whatever it is/was, it doesn’t matter.  I just know I want to rely on myself and DO what needs to get done on my own so that maybe I can get that practical faith in myself back.  And it’s really difficult to put into words what I mean.  See, I’m not afraid or worried because I KNOW I can handle it so in that sense I do have self-confidence.  It’s just that I haven’t shown myself or others by example that I can in a long while.  I’m not sure what’s more important to me; showing myself or showing others.  I think .. myself.  Because there’s only one person in my head and watching. Maybe I’m the “others”.

I’m 24 hours away from becoming a single parent for a period of 2 to 4 months.  I’m hoping for 3 max, of course.  Last night Dennis said “Just say the word and we’ll abort”, so I said “Ok, let’s abort”, and then we laughed.   It was a silly game at what if.  It would be really stupid if we aborted now after everything we have psyched ourselves up for. Of course, we are going to follow thru with the plan!

Now there is a chance I will be getting a job working remotely for a company which will slow the entire process of getting the house ready for sale.  But given the state of our bank account, I think it would be dumb not to take it.  Hopefully most of the work will be done between now and when I will have to start the job.  I’m leaving it in the hands of fate.  If it’s meant to be, I will get the job.  If it’s not, then I won’t.  Whatever happens there, I will accept.  There are major plusses and minuses to either outcome, but I think the plusses outweight the minuses.

My biggest obstacle when it comes to accomplishing an important goal has always been myself.  That’s true for everyone, of course, but I have sabotaged myself more times than I have helped myself so the chances it will happen again are worrisomely high.  I’m hoping that this knowledge and my fear of a repeat will be the key to serving myself for once.

I’ve played out both extreme opposite outcomes in my head.

Worst case scenario:

I freak the fuck out over everything and shut down and go hide in my room watching movies and TV series day after day.  I lose my patience with my kids on a nightly basis and make them miserable, angry, and sad.  I get an offer for this job after a couple weeks and I’m so overwhelmed by all that I haven’t done that I think I can’t take the job and end up turning it down.  I convince myself and Dennis that it’s for the best because I need to focus on selling this house and moving to Texas.  I finally start doing some work around the house all the while feeling guilty that I let things slide so much that I couldn’t handle taking the job.  Christmas starts knocking on the door and suddenly I’m forced into action because I feel as if the world is coming to an end.  I give away or throw away all the things I could have sold to make some cash.  The house is finally put on the market months after we had planned, I’ve put on more pounds of self loathing, the packing is chaotic, I settle for a moving company at the worst rate possible out of desperation, I settle on a bad offer on this house, and I limp to Texas with the kids in the car feeling like a complete failure and an idiot for setting myself up for success failure in Texas by fucking myself over so thoroughly and forcing myself to start my life there with major feelings of self loathing instead of great feelings of empowerment and a belief that I my control over my own life has improved.  It wouldn’t be the first time I had fucked myself over like that. I have been fucking myself over like that for the last several years and this move was supposed to be a chance at facing my fears, cleaning the slate, and doing the work.   But I have just failed.  Again.  There is no hope for me at this point and it’s likely from here on out that anti-depressants and a divorce are in my future. 

Best case scenario:

I continue to put the work on my moving journal which I have created to lay out how packing will be organized (by color).  I use this system to identify all the items that need selling, donating, and trashing.  I start and maintain a detailed inventory list for everything that is getting moved, and I complete my search for the right moving company and I make a deposit and have them on standby.  I work daily to ensure that all items on my sell list are sold, all items on my trash list are trashed, and all items on my donate list are donated.  The house gets put on the market on schedule and I’m offered the remote job which I accept.  Even if I am not done with all the work when it’s offered, I feel 100% in control and feel confident that I can handle the job and work on the remaining packing/selling/donating after hours and on weekends.  Even if things get hard, my frustration level is low enough to keep me from murdering my kids each day when they push those buttons they push.  The happier they are, the less buttons they push. Once the house is on the market, I feel good enough about everything that is done and the time left to play with (and the fact that I’m making an income) that I am not going to accept a shit offer for this house if one is given, even if we sell it as-is.  It’s a good house and I’m not desperate.  Even if selling takes longer than we’d hoped for, we feel confident enough to rent a house ahead of the sale and may even take a 3-4 day vacation to Texas to work on getting it furnished and so the kids can see Dennis, and get excited about their new house.  Once the old house sells everything is ready and we pack up whatever is remaining and head off.  I arrive in Texas, whether I love it or hate it, with a sense that life can be good and with a new confidence in myself and a belief that my days of fucking myself over are over. 

Best and worst scenarios.  Either one is possible and even if it ends up being something in between, I think my actions are what matters most.   If I don’t get the job, if we don’t get a good offer, if it takes longer than we’d like to sell, if I don’t have the patience I’m going to need to keep me from murdering my kids…  that’s all variable and what happens will happen and won’t really affect how I feel about myself.  Well, maybe not getting the job will, but that falls under the category of “out of my control”.

I know what I need to do, but the question is will I do it?  I’m tired of self-evaluating why I do or don’t do what I do or don’t do, so I won’t.  At this point and after all this time I just know it’s a matter of doing versus not doing.  How it all turns out will depend on how big of a coward I am and whether or not I have the courage enough to face my fears of failure.  

It is very intriguing how a fear of failure will keep me from trying to keep from failing.  For being a highly analytical human being, I sure suck at self-analysis.  Ever heard of Morita Therapy?  After I read up on that is when I stopped trying to analyze my motives and just DO shit or not DO shit.  There is no try. (Or analysis)

Up until today, Dennis and I had been doing a lot of researching of various things online like schools, houses, and moving companies.  In the last 3 weeks I have spent a great deal of time making calls, getting estimates for repairs, and getting a couple huge issues dealt with with our house.  But today is what I considered to be my first day of dealing with our belongings.  Today was to be the start of the sweating, the sifting, the boxing, the throwing away, the selling, but so far what I have done is think and research online some more. 

The thing I researched was boxes; their cost, what kind and size I should get, where to find them for free or cheaply, and how to pack my things in them.  All important things to know but the truth is I’m fucking stalling because I’m fucking overwhelmed.  My brain started slowly exploding on Friday and this morning the mushroom cloud fully formed over my skull.  I can feel it over my head.  It has distrupted space/time and has sucked the oxygen out from air around me.  

That’s the amount of time I said it would take me to do the brunt of the work ahead of me: two weeks.  Oh. My. God.

Truth is, I was looking forward to having a full month to get repairs done, sift thru all our possessions, decide what’s coming with us and what’s not, box things up a bit at a time, and so forth.  Then once that’s done, BOOM, the house gets listed and I’m ready to move myself, the kids, the pets, and our stuff whenever a buyer gives us a good offer and we close.  But now that we have met with our real estate agent the plan has gone from sprucing up the house and decluttering to just decluttering so we can sell it as-is.  But, can I really decide item per item what is coming with us and what is not in just 2 weeks?  …AND play the role of single parent for the duration? I guess I’ll try, but it’s a tall order. 

To make things more sucky, there are things I really want to try and sell because they certainly aren’t coming with us.  Like all those freakin clothes.  I don’t want to just dump it all in a donation box and they will take a little more than just 2 weeks to post on ebay and sell.

It took a bit for me to get used to this new direction today.  I’m still feeling a little dissappointed that beautifying this house would make no difference in our take-home dollar amount.  The way it was explained makes sense, but I’m almost dissappointed that there isn’t more I can do to the house before leaving it.  This is a classic example of how not getting to do (last minute) what I should have already done makes me feel like a failure.  Putting things in the perspective of money alone, however, we would not be in a better position if we factored in all the thousands of dollars we would have spent versus what we’d get back.  Whether we had put it in years ago or put it in now, spending money would make little difference our amount of take-home money, but it does make a difference in the level of warm prideful feelings I take away with to Austin.  Right now it’s at zero.

I struggled all week to write something new about this new adventure of ours to move to Texas but, frankly, I have been tired. I’ve been so exhausted after calling and talking to what feels like dozens of plumbers and roofers and electricians, scheduling their visits to my house, making sure the visits don’t overlap, and keeping track of each estimate, their contact information, and what I thought of them each day.  It’s exhausting even when you encounter nice people who are truly interested in providing their best service without price gouging fucking you in the ass.  

Today, I met a plumber who I think really wasn’t a happy man.  He tried to put on a smile a couple of times, but this just wasn’t a happy man.  He wanted to charge me $750 to replace a shower faucet, $200 to replace a valve outside, $800 to install a tankless water heater, and $130 to snake my toilets, so I just had him snake the toilets.  Fuck everything else.   Ethan put something down the toilet but he said that if snaking didn’t work, we just needed a new toilet.  He wouldn’t even try removing the toilet to get the object out because “we don’t do that” and “your toilet is too old”.  So if the snaking didn’t work, I’d be out $130 anyway and still have a clogged toilet.  Also, his was the second estimate I got for installing that water heater that has been 3 to 4 times the price I was expecting.  So I decided to just sell the tankless water heater.  I realize this house doesn’t need a tankless water heater to help it sell.   It certainly doesn’t need me to pay for its installation.

Today’s highlight, however, came when I openned the shipping box of the tankless water heater.  It turned out that the water heater wasn’t the only thing in that box.   Along with a shirt, a box of baby wipes, and tire pressure guage, there was a Samsung 27″ curved computer monitor.    I didn’t order it.  It was just sent by accident.  I was shocked and happy but also pissed that i didn’t know that was in there.  That huge unopenned box that sat like a monument to my inaction and procrastination actually had a hidden treasure inside that I nearly missed out on because I wouldn’t open it.  I didn’t open it because I thought the water heater inside would spill out everywhere and I wanted to keep it all contained.   I didn’t want to unleash that can of worms when it would be easier to ignore it if it remained in the box.   A habit that will be a challenge to end.

These three R’s each have the capacity to spread like a disease.  The rats spread filth, the wood rot begets more rot, and a rut just gets harder to break out of.  The longer they go unchecked, the more damage they do and I’m not just talking figuratively. This has been my reality and I would have to say that each one has contributed to the persistence of the others.  I always thought that if I had a chance to get a situational and geographical transplant, I would, while also keeping in mind how difficult it would be to get that chance while the rut was in full swing. And no, the rut isn’t another word for depression.  I know the difference.

Everyone who was employed at my last job for as long as I was would attest they probably stayed too long.  I know I did.  I feel the same way about my house.  15 years in this place has just been way too long especially for a house I never loved and a house we outgrew years ago.  So it has some wood rot now which made it easy for the rats to get in and now we are paying thousands to deal with it, rut or no rut.  As for the rut itself, I desperately need new surroundings.  A new city may be in order as well.  Hell, why not move to a whole new state?!

Yes, it would be nice to win the lottery, buy a new place, get all new furniture and clothes, and just step into the new situation.  Throw in a new, fulfilling job and I’d be golden.  But I think that would be too easy.   I want and need to work my own way out of the rats, the rot, and the rut …so I am.  The rats were tackled last week and this, and the rot will be dealt with this week and next.  The rut, I expect, will be a longer process that I won’t be sure is cured until some months in the future when I can finally look back and can say “Yup, things have come a long way.”  Perhaps the rut just goes away the moment I decide to ignore it and just move forward with tackling everything else. 

Plan Your Content


If you’re considering adding a blog to your site, you’ll want to have a plan beforehand. Planning your blog will help your subject matter remain consistent over time. It’ll also help you determine whether or not there’s enough material to maintain a steady stream of posts.

One pitfall many new bloggers run into is starting a blog that isn’t posted to frequently enough. A shortage of recent posts can give your visitors a bad impression of your business. One may think “I wonder if they’re still in business” or “they may want to hire a writer.”

A blog, like any other customer facing aspect of your business, communicates your brand. If it isn’t maintained and given proper attention, people will notice. Post regularly and keep your content fresh. Give your audience a reason to visit often.

Read more >

Categories and Tags


If you write about a variety of subjects, categories can help your readers find the posts that are most relevant to them. For instance, if you run a consulting business, you may want some of your posts to reflect work you’ve done with previous clients, while having other posts act as informational resources. In this particular case, you can set up 2 categories: one labeled Projects and another labeled Resources. You’d then place your posts in their respective categories.

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Pages vs. Posts


If you’re new to WordPress you may be wondering what’s the big deal behind Pages and Posts. At first glance they appear to be one and the same: if you were to create either a new page or a new post you’d be presented with nearly identical interfaces and in many cases the public appearance of pages and posts will look the same.

Don’t let this fool you. There’s a very fundamental difference between the two and that difference is what makes CMSs, like WordPress, great platforms for integrating blogs with traditional websites.


Think about the kind of pages that make up a typical website. Most often you’ll see pages like “Home”, “About Us”, “Services”, “Contact Us”, etc. Within WordPress these are often treated as Pages; documents that have no particular regard for the time they were posted.

For example, when you visit the “About Us” page of your favorite company’s website you don’t expect the content to be very different from what was available there a week ago.

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I’m a transpolitical.  I was born in a conservative catholic-adventist household and I had an absolute fear of God’s wrath instilled in me by the nuns at OLS and the grandparents from LACASA.  This brainwashing went on for years.

When I reached the 2nd grade, I felt I wasn’t like the other kids.  I felt different.  I had questions and an over abundance of common sense that the grown ups hated.  A liberal presence filled my mind and I’d often look around me and wonder how these teachers could be so daft.  I already knew I didn’t beleive in God but if I let on, I was belittled and made to feel as if I was abnormal.  My dad should have saved his money and sent me to PS19.

Years later in 1992, excited about my first elections having reached voting age,  I was being _commanded_ to vote for Bush because “he’s a republican and we are cuban”.  All requests for an explanation began and ended with “he’s republican and we are cuban”.  I knew then that I was alone.  Like a fleck of gold in a riverbed of mud.

I came out in the year 2000 when another Bush threatened the world.  I claimed to be agnostic rather than atheist because it lightened the blow. Since then and with small doses of fuck-you attitude and help from friends, I could finally say to those authority figures from my past:  WTF???!!!


I’m lucky to have survived those years living as a conservative republican.  My transition to what I am today was arduous but SO worth it.  The transition so complete that even my closest family would kick me out of church if I entered a confessional.