Shelf

July 6 2020

For the record, the titles of most of these posts are meaningless. Sometimes they’re loosely related to the content of the post, most of the time they’re just random words that pop into my head when I’m trying to think of a title.

Land Stuff

So I stopped by today, as predicted, to collect tools and do a quick walk-around on the land. I took a few pictures and went for a quick walk. I’m actually pretty stoked, I was able to map out a walking path that I can use whenever I feel like getting some exercise up there, since I love to go for walks, but out here there’s no such thing as a sidewalk or public nature trail. Everything is all 70mph+ highway or private property.

I’m happy about this loop. It’s almost exactly a third of a mile, which is a good ’rounded’ distance that will make it easier for me to track how far I’ve walked. 3 laps is one mile, 15 laps is a good 5k, etc. It’s also a relatively nice walk, relatively flat, but still challenging.

I also managed to snag a couple pictures of things I meant to post a few days ago. For one, you can see our mower. I have it chained up and hidden in the middle of the woods, but as you can also see, despite the fact that we bought it on Thursday and today is only Monday, we have used the hell out of that mower.

The other thing I wanted to show off was the stairs. As you may have seen on this post, I posted a picture of the trailer we have on the land. Well, I built stairs for it. They’re not done (I still need to add bracers, a railing, and a bottom step), but we can more easily get into the trailer with a nice set of stairs.

I was able to build part of the stairs using reclaimed wood from a different project, back from when I build the fence in front of my house. You can kind of see the picture of the fence in the background of these raised beds that I built in September.

Dobie

7 days and 8 hours until the day Dobie comes to visit. Her flight leaves at 6, which means she needs to get up at like 3 and get a ride to the airport at 4.

I get the feeling none of us are going to sleep very well that night. I need to be up and ready to keep in touch with her anyway, just to make sure that she’s got everything she needs to safely make her way out here, and since I normally go to bed at 2AM, it seems unnecessary to go to bed at that point just to wake up at 3AM.

Addendum

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Slots

July 5 2020

Nine more days. Nine more goddamn days. We’re into the single digits now, yee haw.

Exhaustion

So after yesterday’s work on the farm, I have been super exhausted today. Like, I woke up and my legs were weak, I was just generally fatigued, just straight exhausted. We decided to call off today’s land trip but I have to go back tomorrow to collect all of the tools we left behind for today. We would have brought them back today, but we didn’t know just how absurdly exhausted we would be. It was the mowing, the walking, more work on stairs, etc.

I’ll probably try to get some pictures taken, too. I want to take pictures of the stairs I built and a few other things, like the mower, maybe the shed, etc. Nothing huge, just pictures for the sake of pictures.

Dobie

I really like talking with Dobie. We’ve gotten into a habit of having a voice chat almost every day now, and it really fills some voids in the day. It’s distracting as all hell, if I’m to be quite honest, but it’s a super welcome distraction. Most of our conversations are about pooping or farts, but today we had a bunch of fun cruising around on google maps for a while, doing a bit more trip planning, talking about food, and just generally having a good time.

When I first met her, things were kind of weird. We met in a discord server with a whole bunch of other people. I didn’t even notice her at first. I joined the server with the intent of just sort of chatting with people and not really expecting anything out of it. Eventually, I got into a voice chat room, mingled a bit, still not expecting much other than to entertain people in conversation, but eventually, Dobie and I sort of hit it off. After a bit of back and forth, we realized that we each have a little bit of what the other wanted, so we made plans to meet each other.

Obviously, when it comes to buying plane tickets, you usually have to buy way in advance in order to secure a cheaper ticket. So, we bought two months ago. And we did the math on it and realized that we had flights planed twelve days after we met. That’s all it took for us to make a definitive decision. And we decided that we would spend the time between then and the actual flight getting to know each other. And it’s been great. We’ve explored likes and dislikes, we’ve shared so many jokes and good times. We’ve learned a few of each others habits, we’ve stayed up way too late talking, and we’ve adjusted our lives slightly so that we could spend more time talking with each other.

I’ve learned a lot about her, and I’ve learned a lot about myself. What I like. What I dislike. What I can tolerate. This experience has made me feel that there are no hard boundaries when it comes to wanting to love somebody. I mean, for example, Bat and I agreed that we wouldn’t seek someone out who was still in school. But in this case, I helped Dobie finish some of her schooling. She still has more to go, and we’re okay with that. The distance was another hurdle that we were concerned about, and yet here we are, continuously trying to find a way to bridge that gap. She has interests in certain kinks that was never really my thing, and yet here I am, considering new possibilities for myself.

I don’t know what the future holds, I don’t know where this week with Dobie will take me, or Bat, but I can honestly say, the short time that I’ve spent with her has made me a more open and patient person. Dobie is beautiful and kind, and I feel lucky to have met her. Literally. We both happened to join the discord server within a week of each other, and we made such a quick connection. I don’t even have to say I hope it works out, because what we have already is just terrific.

Old Friends

In the midst of this, I find myself thinking about some old friends. I had a few over the years, most of whom, if I’m to be quite honest, I met online. I think back about some of them from time to time and wonder where things went wrong, or at the very least wondering how they’re doing.

In checking up on old relationships, I’ve come to find that generally, the main reason I lose friends is through prolonged disinterest. I’d like to think that’s a good thing. It just means that nothing really drove us apart, we just went our separate ways. In my opinion the worst way to lose a friend is through something nobody can control (for instance, losing a best friend in school because you move away) and of course, having a classic ‘breakup.’

I still check in on old friends from time to time, whether or not we broke apart due to just distance or whether we broke apart because of a specific solid reason. In one instance, I stopped talking to a friend from High School because all he wanted to do was smoke pot and do nothing else. Apparently me moving on without him actually made him realize that he wanted to better himself. We still don’t really talk, but it’s nice to know that he is doing good things with his life.

There was another friend of mine, who I met online through a gaming community. I stopped talking to him because we started having disagreements that began increasing over time. Issues with mutual friends, issues on philosophy, stuff that wasn’t really world-ending but at a certain point, I just felt like I wasn’t enjoying my time with him as much as I had in the beginning. I wound up just breaking things off with him rather abruptly because I was ready to move forward in other ways as well, and I felt like there was no good way at the time to just say “I don’t think we’re really that great of friends anymore, and I don’t think it would be worth trying to fix it, because we just disagree a lot.” Either way, I found out he started making some fun videos and was enjoying his time working on hobbies he seems to enjoy, so I’m happy for him. Knowing him, he probably checks in on me from time to time, too.

Another friend who I think about from time to time because we were pretty good friends for a while, wound up going to jail for a bit after being caught dealing meth. He said he made good money, but he also did some time. I sort of fell out of keeping in touch with him as a result of all of that. Turns out, long term, he wound up rehabilitating, and even got involved in some mental health organizations that allowed him to help others recover from their own addictions and issues. Now he’s the director of some organizations that have opened mental health facilities and halfway houses. Really nice to see some good in people whom I found hard to see any good in before.

Numbers

I have some numbers for you. Do you want any? Here’s a number: 36. If you don’t like that one, how about this one?: 28. I like that one, that one’s a special number. I might have to ask for it back.

Addendum

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Olivia

July 4 2020

Happy independence day? I guess? I mean we’re kind of a shitty country right now.

Land

So we mowed more today. For some reason I don’t have a good picture of our mower, even though I intended on actually getting a good one. Crap. I do have a few pictures of the land though. Here’s one of the best ones. Freshly mowed grass.

It’s so pretty. Bat did most of the work on the mower today, I was working on edging and reinforcing a set of stairs that I built a few weeks ago. I’ll have to post pictures of the stairs as well.

I went climbing through the wooded area on the land (and dropped/chipped my phone, oops), and came across my first little bit of wildlife on the property. A Texas Redheaded Centipede (or Scolopendra Heros. I got a picture of that one, too! It startled the shit out of me when I first saw it. I didn’t realize centipedes that large even live in Texas!

Anyway, here it is. Sorry for those who are squeamish! After I got a few pictures (and a video that my phone struggled to record in the heat), it climbed into a tree and disappeared.

Walking

Sometimes when I go for walks by myself, I talk to myself. I’m not really sure why, but I just do. I always have, really. Sometimes I talk to a tulpa or two, I think it’s a useful way to sort of attempt to analyze myself from an ‘outside’ point of view, sort of. It really just turns into me asking myself if I’m on the right track. If my life is going well at the moment. If I’m happy with where I am.

So yeah, it’s been a while since I’ve gone for a solo walk, but I wound up walking the land today while Bat was off mowing and it was rather satisfying just to hear my own thoughts again. Generally speaking, when I’m at home or when I’m with Bat, I don’t have very much time to think to myself, because normally my thoughts go in dark or negative directions. But when I’m solo-walking, it’s like the one time when I think in a more positive direction.

I think I’ll do that more often.

Addendum

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Gator

July 3 2020

Another Day, Another Blog Post

Change

I sometimes feel like my life can be divided into different ‘eras’ or something like that. Because there are several different periods of my life that have been extraordinarily different all around, and each has sort of defined a part of who I am as a person.

If I was to divide my life into ‘periods,’ this is what they would be:

-Early Life
-Elementary School
-Middle School
-High School
-Marines
-Back Home
-Texas Part 1
-Texas Part 2

Now, I don’t have good names for those last two, but I feel like I had to distinguish them. I don’t feel like going over the categories, but I guess I can explain my logic for what Texas Part 1 means to me, and why I’m onto Part 2, and what I think Part 3 will likely be.

Texas Part 1

Bat and I first moved to Texas in April of 2013, so we’ve been here a little over 7 years now. We bought a house, found varying degrees of employment, and over the years have had 42 (wow!) animals. Rats, chickens, ferrets, lizards, rabbits, cats, a dog, a toad, etc. We even rehabilitated snakes, birds, and for a night had a baby opossum. We’ve stuck with the same car for years, we’ve maintained the same house, kept the same family, etc.

We had many defining experiences. Job related, friend related, neighbor related, family related, etc. But for the most part, it has just been us out here, living a normal life, on our own, in Texas.

Texas Part 2

2020 has changed a fair amount. First of all, coronavirus hit, and frankly, that shit has been life-changing. Heather has been working from home, society has changed how it needs to behave on a fundamental level, things are just different.

Additionally, we got a roommate for the first time. He was just sticking around for a few months until he inevitably had to move back to Virginia. I don’t feel like I need to explain how a roommate after living with just Bat for 7 years can really change the dynamics of a household.

We sought out and bought land. This is a literal life goal accomplished right there. It’s also a very ‘Texan’ thing to do. Own land. Eventually we’ll have animals and a house and a garden and so much more.

We met Dobie. Bat and I have been a part of the poly scene for a little while now, and this is the first time we have met someone that, so far, I’ve actually felt something for, who has expressed any level of interest back. I haven’t connected to someone like this since I met Heather about 9 years ago. It really means a lot to me. Whether we form a relationship or just remain really good friends, it is extremely significant.

Texas Part 3

What does Texas Part 3 hold? Well, seeing as how it likely won’t be for a long time, I can’t really be sure. But the most likely possibilities would be either Bat and I bringing a third person fully into our relationship, or us moving to the new land. Like we own it, we will work on it tirelessly for a long time, but until we live there, it will forever remain just a place, up North, that we own. It’s not a home yet.

Existential Crisis

Which brings me to my next topic, which is the fact that I’ve been having a little bit of trouble with, and I know I’ve broached a bit before. But what comes next? I’ve been struggling with this a lot. Let’s just say we have our land, we start a farm, make a life for ourselves, then what? Is it just endless ranching and farming forever? What did people do in the middle ages when that was all there was?

I mean, it seems fulfilling, don’t get me wrong. But lately I’ve been struggling to balance the concepts of life and death and what our purpose is in this world. I don’t really believe in any religion or god, and surely there is no divine purpose… can I just like, meet an alien already and go exploring for a bit? Cause that seems like a perfect solution to the inevitable mid-life crisis I’ll have in 10-20 years.

Media

I couldn’t think of any images to add to the rest of the text but I figured I should add something. So here you go.

Addendum

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karma

July 2 2020

12 Days Left. Fuck Yeah.

Land

So we bought a lawn mower today! And boy howdy did we use it! We have about 5 or so acres of pasture space, and that’s a lot of grass. Eventually when we have cattle, it won’t be a problem at all, but for the time being, we need to be able to keep that grass nice and short, mostly to eradicate our chigger problem. Chiggers are a parasitic little mite, and their larvae subsist on living things. They love tall grass, so they can climb it and brush against animals (or people!) walking around, and then they bite into our tasty flesh.

So we got the mower, and we went around mowing paths throughout the land. It was honestly thrilling. It’s like driving a large go-kart without having to worry about staying on a track. You just hop on, start it up, and start cutting. When Dobie visits in 12 days we will let her ride on it too!


Bat Riding the Mower

Story Time: Family

I’ve never really been extraordinarily close to my family. My father died when I was young, I had just turned three a couple months prior. He was found dead the day after Christmas, after being separated from my mother because of his rampant drug use. I imagine that he was probably extremely depressed for the holidays and just overdosed, but I guess that isn’t really important.

My mother found someone and sort of pushed his new fatherhood position on us. I remember by the time I was in second grade in elementary school, my mother forced me to call him ‘dad,’ and would even charge me a quarter any time I mistakenly called him by his name. He was not a nice person. The first day we moved into his home, I remember hearing a sound that I thought was a fart, and it turns out it was his stomach making a noise. I asked aloud “was that a fart?” and he immediately got angry at me telling me not to talk like that ever again. This was only the beginning.

Over the years, he would punish me and my brother over the most nonsensical things. If we did anything, anything wrong, even if it was a genuine mistake, we were grounded. If our grades were poor, we were grounded. If we told a lie, no matter how small, we were grounded. If we broke a rule that we didn’t know what a rule yet, we were grounded. At one point, some kid in my school pee’d on the toilet paper so I couldn’t wipe after pooping, so I went home with messy underwear, and I was grounded. He didn’t get physically abusive, but the emotional toll he took on us was devastating.

I never really spared my mother any blame. She married this cruel man. We spent our lives under his purview, following his rules, his logic, his way of doing things. We couldn’t swear. We couldn’t fart. We couldn’t fuck around in any way that offended him. We couldn’t be kids at times. And we were punished accordingly. Some summers, we were forced to spend weeks or months at a time doing literally nothing but reading books because he had taken away all privileges, even playing with toys was no longer allowed. My brother always had it worse, considering he was the older one, and the older ones are almost always treated more harshly as the parent is learning how to even be a parent. Because my mother allowed all of this to happen, I grew to resent her over the years as well. I even went through a phase where I disliked her more than my stepdad, because my stepdad was the problem, but my mother chose this problem.

My relationship with my brother was rather sour, as well. Over the years, my parents enacted rules on him that they relented on when I reached the same age. They also gave me opportunities that they offered because they learned from mistakes they made with him. One big example of how this fundamentally changed our lives was a direct result of my father dying. Social Security paid my mother every month until we turned 18 for costs associated with raising us kids. She put a little bit of that money away every month, into a trust fund. When my brother turned 18, they just gave him the cash. Just like that. About 30 grand, for an 18th birthday present.

He had no money management skills. He had no training. He had the brain of a horny adolescent 18 year old, who had no real experience living in the real world. So of course, he squandered that money, almost immediately. My parents learned from this, so when I turned 18, they didn’t just give me the money. They waited until I had a good use for it, so I eventually spent it on a down payment for a house when I was 22. Now, years later, I’m living in a house which I refinanced to purchase land, in cash, and my brother now in his mid-30’s, still has next to nothing. He’s always been working his way out of debt.

As a result of this, we never talk. I think he feels resentment towards me, and I feel sort of sorry for him. But it’s always been this way. He’d get in more trouble than me growing up, I was always the little angel that my parents would absolve when it was a situation that involved the two of us, or his groundings would last longer, or whatever. I know for a fact that he was envious of what I had, and I felt embarrassed almost that I had something he didn’t. I even got into trouble and spent time ‘on the inside’ for a while and still came out on top. But it’s not his fault, or mine, it’s just the way it is. I haven’t seen him since 2016, and I hadn’t texted him after that until a few weeks ago, but it just felt weird. It’s like he’s a stranger who is tied to my life because of some rule somewhere.

I know I have extended family, but I haven’t seen any of them in longer than I can remember. I still call my mom, but sometimes I wonder what either of us is getting out of that. Like my brother, I haven’t seen my mom or stepdad since 2016, and with Coronavirus I don’t see that changing any time soon. And honestly? I don’t really feel bad about that. I have my life. They have theirs. It works.

Addendum

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Pechuga

June 30 2020

Last day of June. Dobie visits the Tuesday after next!

Coronavirus

So, as I may have mentioned (or at least thought, I rarely re-read my own posts), Texas, the state in which I reside, is doing horrendously right now at controlling the spread of the Coronavirus. This suggests that we will likely be stuck working from home at least until the end of the year, maybe longer.

It has me wondering when, if ever, that things will go back to ‘normal,’ out here. I mean, I don’t mind parts of it. It’s nice to go grocery shopping with less people in the store, and traffic certainly is lighter, but obviously it sucks to not be able to interact with people in the same way.

Bat and I have talked a little bit about what this might mean for our future. With the possibility of home building and with the (hopefully soon) advances in satellite internet, could it really be possible that we move out there while she still maintains her job in the city? If she doesn’t have to commute, does it matter where she lives?

Land

Speaking of which, I’ve talked a fair amount about the land that we bought, but I haven’t posted any pictures, despite taking about half a million of them. So here’s some highlights.


So this is one shot of the main portion of the land, there’s about 4-5 acres of just straight pasture and farmland. We’ll plant enough food to sustain ourselves and eventually raise a few farm animals.


These are some of the raised beds we’ll be growing in. Long term, we might move them to a more suitable spot, they are pretty surrounded by trees a lot of the time.


This is the trailer we’ll be able to use temporarily. We don’t really plan on living in this much, but it is a nice place to cool off and eat while we’re up there on the weekends working.

Pretty fun stuff, right? And hey, I actually put pictures of something on here so it’s not just a wall of text anymore.

Addendum

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Cassette

June 29 2020

I’m basically a french maid.

Cleaning

So now that we don’t have a roommate right now, I can focus more on fucking up our house in order to clean it. There’s really just more space to relocate everything so I can clean around it. But I really have a lot to do in two weeks. Let’s see. I have to redo siding in the kitchen pantry, I have to caulk siding in our bedroom, I have to tile a couple closets, I have to re-paint the bathroom, replace some drywall in the garage, sew some ribbon to some towels to make it easier to hang them up, fix our bathroom faucet (it has a small leak), seal some gaps under the kitchen sink, and generally clean and reorganize the garage.

And I have two weeks! This is in addition to the daily activities of cleaning our rabbit bins, feeding them, feeding / watering the hens, cleaning the cat litter, watering the front and backyard plants, sweeping, cooking, planning, etc.

I also need to prepare our monthly allotment of cat food, which means tomorrow, I’m going to be cutting up meat for 4 hours.

Basically spring cleaning!

Stress

Stress is an unimaginably powerful influence. In the past few months, I’ve felt things that I haven’t felt in years. Most of us know the feeling. When you’re first interested in someone, and you feel different things depending on where you are in terms of a friendship or relationship with them.

When I was in high school and beyond, I went through all of the typical feelings of stress, be it positive or negative. Realizing that I “liked” a girl, enough to make an attempt at courtship. Asking someone out. Having them say yes. Having them say no. Having them say yes at first, only to have it turn into a no later. Planning first dates, second, third, and the list goes on. Breakups. Rekindling. Sexual relationships, platonic relationships. So many feelings associated.

Once I met my wife, I stopped having so many of these feelings. Mostly the negative ones. The feelings of fear (am I good enough?) would dissipate over time, as different steps confirmed to me that she truly loves me. Accepting my history, getting engaged, getting married ceremoniously and ultimately getting married legally. All of these steps just soothe the brain.

Now that we are poly, we face struggles we never thought we’d face again. It’s different, but it’s all the same.

Obviously, it’s different in that, if all fails, Bat and I have someone to go home to each night still. If I find myself attracted to someone, and it doesn’t work out, Bat is still there. If she finds someone she’s interested in, and it doesn’t work out, all the same. It puts us in such a safe (and almost unfair) position, as we really have less to worry about.

And yet we feel the pain of stress all the same. When we tried hitting it off with someone about a year ago (who doesn’t have an animal name, so we’ll just call her ‘Llama’ for simplicity), we spent a lot of time with her. We went on friend dates with Llama, just by ourselves, and in group things, but in the end, we felt suuuuper stressed out, trying to find the right moment to spring the question, wondering about any possible negative (or hopefully positive!) answer, and ultimately, bringing it up when the time came.

In the end, it never worked out. But we’re still friends, and she let us down real easy. In fairness, she is demi, so a simple explanation of ‘hey, I need to know you first’ is completely harmless and in no way affected our friendship negatively. We barely talk now though, mostly because of the whole coronavirus thing.

Now, things are different. A different situation in itself. I’ve mentioned Dobie a number of times. By coincidence and nothing more, Dobie is also demi, which I also know I’ve mentioned before. Bat and I have been talking to Dobie a lot for the past few months. Like, every day, for significant portions of the day, a lot lot. Like, she’s going to visit us and we’re all going to have a great time. All good things.

But despite Bat and I already being in a position where, at worst, we still have each other, I sometimes feel like I’ve been more stressed in the past few months than I ever have been with previous relationships, and I think it’s because of the different dynamic and position of where we are in life.

Getting to know someone from far away who I actually have a reasonable chance at meeting is so much more stressful than just having some online friendship or relationship where I know it’s going to sit exclusively online. It takes so much more emotional involvement. I care about things more, I feel things more. When my online friends are bummed, I’m bummed, sure. But when Dobie is bummed, I find myself conferring with Bat, so that we may ask ourselves, “is there anything we can do to make this situation easier? better? happier?”

And I think that’s where the stress comes in. The more serious an online relationship becomes, the more difficult it is to reconcile the fact that we have our separate lives, and we can’t always be there for Dobie, and she can’t always be here for us. We will visit, and it will be great, and we’ll see where life takes us beyond that, but man oh man is it a struggle.

And don’t get me wrong, it’s absolutely worth it. Making a connection with another human being in such a complex manner is so fulfilling. I can’t think of the last time my brain was both this unnerved and yet also this happy. Bat makes me happy every single day. We have our occasional misgivings like any relationship, but we are solid. We are a team. The idea of strengthening our team, even if it’s always at a distance, is just straight outstanding.

I’m not really sure where I’m going with all of this, honestly. I’m feeling like I’m starting to ramble, but the point I’m trying to make is basically, I’ve been feeling a lot of emotions and feelings that I’m not used to. Even right now, my stomach is feeling sort of tight because we’re so close to this trip, and there’s just so many anxiety inducing things right now.

Like the trip itself, oh man, super positive stress from that. The conversations leading up to it, tons of that eustress, talking to Dobie warms my bones.

But oh man, the concerns about the flights being fucked with again, coronavirus, Dobie worrying about her job potential, Bat worrying about her work performance, me needing to clean the house a fair amount leading up to it, there’s so much pulling me up and pushing me down.

So many feelings.

And now I need to go nap.

Addendum

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Dust

June 27 2020

As if it couldn’t get any worse, there’s now a saharan dust pattern over our state right now. The air quality is currently considered “Unhealthy” in our city, so we’re supposed to avoid going outside.

Coronavirus

So, kind of lame. Our governor has been opening up our state and took forever to mandate mask wearing, so Texas is doing terribly with the whole Coronavirus thing. Bars are closed again, restrictions are being considered again, and for fuck’s sake, there’s another Toilet Paper shortage starting out here. Come on.

Home Building

So Bat (my wife) and I have been talking and have been seriously considering building some earthbag housing. The way we’re planning on going about it is doing a bit of a test run first, where we will build a shed on the property, which we will inevitably use for the purpose of storing a lawn mower when we inevitably get one of those.

If the structure we build for the lawn mower is easy to manage, and seems like something we could live in (if it’s scaled up), then I’m seriously interested in building a house ourselves. We’re thinking of building an 800-1200 square foot house, likely with a workshop along one side of it. Later, we’ll build a barn, and a cover for our parking area, though that part will be built out of wood and metal, most likely, since it won’t be a full-on garage.

It’s kind of exciting. We’ll save a shit-load of money, and we’ll be able to build our own fucking house. It’s the epitome of homesteading, and we could avoid dealing with a mortgage, which would save us tens of thousands of dollars on top of the hundreds of thousands we’d already be saving by building it all ourselves.

So yeah, I’m stoked. It’s not like it’s going to happen any time soon but I have a new project to plan and work on.

Dobie

As of right now, I see Dobie in 16 days. Holy shit. Sixteen days. That’s two weeks from Tuesday. I feel like I’m going out of my fucking mind, it’s so close. SO CLOSE.

Okay, so, now, look. I get that I’m being a little hypocritical with the whole “people aren’t taking Coronavirus seriously enough” thing, if I’m immediately flying a friend out here to visit. I get that. I know it’s a risk. But it’s one of those things where I have to wonder to myself, if we don’t do it, when will it happen? I don’t want to find myself a year from now wondering “what could have been?” It took a looooot of back and forth and consideration before we bought the tickets a few months ago to determine whether or not this was a good idea. And frankly, it’s a bad idea, I get that. But damnit, Dobie has been such a great person to get to know, and finally meeting her feels like it will be somewhat life-changing for her and for us.

Addendum

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Thorny Rose

June 26 2020

Dishes dishes dishes. I need a dishwasher that actually works.

Roommate

We have a roommate who is living here. He’s leaving on Sunday morning. He has no animal name. I’m not sure why I never mentioned him aside from like one other post in the past week.

I recently found out from my wife that he sort of felt bad because he and I never connected. Which is true. I’m not really sure how to feel about it though. Like, we never really chatted much, he made a much stronger connection with Bat, considering he’s her coworker. But now, in the last week, I find out that he wanted to make more of a connection, which, oof. He’s leaving in three days. It’s a little late to try to build a decent friendship now.

In any case, this has made me realize that literally the entire past few months, I’ve dedicated a significant portion of my time establishing a connection of sorts with Dobie. Which is fucking tough for me. I have trouble multitasking in that sense. I’ve come to realize that I have trouble making friends because I tend to put all of my eggs in one basket. Like, okay, so, I’ve been hanging on Discord with a small group of people, but I’d be lying if I said my focus was equally spread between all of them. When I joined CNCNZ (old gaming website) years ago, I was almost exclusively friends with this one guy who I enjoyed gaming with. I met dozens of people, but I only made friends with the one.

I then left them and joined another website, and despite hanging out with another several dozen people, I only connected with one of them.

Back to the present. In some ways I feel like it was either I’d connect with this roommate or I’d connect with Dobie, since I was sort of getting to know them at the same time. Whelp. Dobie won. The irony is we specifically scheduled her visit for a time when Roommate would be gone.

Story Time

Strap in, folks. Here’s a long one. It has been a long time since I’ve written a story from scratch, so forgive my rusty writing style. This is Part 1.

“There once was a knight named Leon.
He was hardly a gallant, with the strenght of a peon.
Not born for adventure, had no prowess or might.
Fell in love with a dragon who he first meant to fight.”

So there I was. Adventure after adventure, I found myself walking down the road, headed to the castle of Krendâr. It was finally my time. I’d been an adventurer for long enough, and I felt I’d gained enough experience to perform the final task of every true warrior. I had to slay a dragon, rescue a princess, claim the gold, and be crowned King of all the land before me. I mean, classic knight story, right? So here I was, walking from town to town, and if I was lucky, I was able to speed things up by hitching a ride on a local carriage service.

And there it was, finally, after what felt like an eternity of travel. The castle of Krendâr. Though, I had to be honest. From the paintings I’d seen, the wanted posters I passed on my journey, and just hearing general word of mouth, I was pretty underwhelmed. This place looked big, sure, but it wasn’t the huge fuckoff fortress I was expecting. I wasn’t even sure how a dragon was supposed to live in this place. I mean, what, do they crawl around in there, just kind of poking their head into different rooms?

Anyway, so, I take a few steps forward. I notice that the stoney path was quickly replaced by bricks, and sure enough, almost as if on cue, I hear a dragon screech from far away. Looking up, I can see it circling. The dragon spits a plume of smokey fire, and like a harrier diving for prey, the dragon just fucking drops from the sky in like half a second, slamming into the ground not 20 feet in front of me. I felt myself losing my footing as dust and rock kicked up all around me.

“Hear me, fair knight! I have defeated many before you, and no sooner will you unsheath your sword will I turn you into a pile of molten armor and fleshy dust.” The dragon stood there, motionless aside for it’s extremely subtle breathing, appearing fierce, but calm.

I was frozen, this wasn’t just some dragon. This was… holy shit. She was gorgeous. I mean, her scales, her posture, her display of strength. Whatever idea I had in mind to defeat this dragon was just gone, left behind, somewhere on the path back there.

“Of course, another human who thinks they’re so brave until I scare them into submission. You can’t even move. How pathetic. Do you have anything to say, or should I just finish you off?”

I opened my mouth, just enough to let the words sort of fall out. “You… you’re hot.”

The poor dragon was baffled. Startled, even. It was as if whatever speech she had prepared, whatever action she was ready to take on every pitiful knight, all she had planned and expected from this encounter, was completely derailed. She was not in any way ready for this.

“I’m what?” She asked, taken aback. “You think I’m… hot?” I could see a change, both in the dragon’s face and her scales. A certain redness was flushing her face. Her tough armored front arms appeared to soften. I could swear they were almost trembling.

I took a quiet breath, and began moving slowly and deliberately, all while maintaining eye contact. As I moved my hands down to my sword, I could see a slight snarl forming as this dragon’s eyes followed my every motion. After adjusting a clasp to my right, my scabbard, my only defense, dropped to the ground. I took a step forward, awe struck. “You’re beautiful,” I said. “Please, do with me what you must… But let me just… look at you, first.”

The dragon sat there, at this point completely bewildered. “Wait, is this some kind of trick?” she asked, stepping back, looking around. “What kind of play is this? This is a distraction, where are the others?”

“No tricks,” I said. “I will confess I came here to defeat you and rescue the princess and claim the gold, but that is all meaningless to me now. I can see with my short time left that you are the true reward, the true gem at the end of this journey.”

The dragon sat there for a second, staring at me. Tilting her head sideways, almost like a dog, curious about a strange sound.

“Seriously?” She asked. “You’re… you’re serious, you’re not kidding, are you.”

“I don’t think I could ever be more serious,” I said. “You are the most beautiful thing I have laid my eyes on.” The dragon appeared to grow somewhat annoyed, as if I was no longer a threat, but more of a bothersome impediment to her otherwise occupied time spent flying around.

“What the fuck is this?” She said. “I mean, who are you?”

“I’m Leon!” I said, standing tall and proud, though, admittedly, a little bit nervous. “I am a brave knight!”

“You’re a knight, huh?” The dragon wasn’t impressed. “Where’s your horse?”

“Well, uhh… I don’t actually have a horse…”

“So, you’re not a knight.”

I felt deflated but I wasn’t giving up. “I’m more of a warrior, really, honest!”

The dragon sighed. “You’re barely wearing any armor, come on, quit dicking me around.”

I frowned and sort of kicked my feet a little bit. “I mean, I’m an adventurer, right? I came here on an important mission-”

“Are you asking me?” The dragon interjected. “Come on, you’re not cut out for this. Just take your sword and get out of here, I won’t hurt you, you’re not ready for all of this.”

Disappointed, I huffed and began to gather my things. The dragon didn’t even seem alarmed as I picked up my sword and clipped it back to my side, and as I was set to leave, she spread her wings out and prepared to take off.

“Would you like to go on a date?” I asked. As if she wasn’t thrown off before, this seriously caught the dragon off-guard. Halfway into leaping, she was so bewildered that she ate shit while trying to take-off. I cringed, watching her collect herself from the ground.

“Would I what?” Her eyes were wide. “Go on a date? Are you kidding? Why would you think I’d want to go on a date with you?”

“Well, you seem so lonely out here just doing nothing but guarding a princess, especially if the only people who ever show up here are either trying to kill you or steal your gold.”

“That’s what you were here for!” The dragon retorted, angrily. “You just wanted to rescue my princess! What makes you any different?”

“Okay, seriously, I’m past that. I don’t even know what the princess looks like.” I pleaded my case. “I don’t care about the princess or your gold, it’s just that… well the second I laid my eyes on you, I…” I took a breath. “I’m sorry, I’m just awestruck.”

My words seemed to disarm the dragon a bit. She took a breath, sat down, and closed her eyes for a moment. I feel like she was really trying to figure this out in her mind. After what felt like forever, she finally spoke.

“Look, I’m incredibly flattered, I’m not going to lie. But I can’t date you. Where would we go? I can’t just… I mean, this is ridiculous, you’re a hare, I’m a dragon, and I have my castle duties, I just…”

I felt my courage returning, as I stood tall and tried to reason with her. “Look, how about just one date? Just one. No pressure, you just take a break for one meal, we can just relax somewhere, and just talk. Sound good?”

“Humph.” The dragon stood and turned around. “Just one date.” She spread her wings and flew away.

((Part 2 will come sometime later))

Addendum

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Oil Lantern

June 24 2020

This day is bananas. B.A.N.A.N.A.S. Seriously, I just composted about half a dozen bananas.

House

So, now that Bat and I have spent a few weeks sprucing up the land, I swear, I’m thinking like 40 steps ahead. We don’t even have a fence around the property and yet I can’t stop thinking about what it would take to build a house there. Realistically speaking, we have a few options.

Option one is to go for the cheapest and simplest, but also the least satisfying, which is a mobile home. Now, a mobile home doesn’t necessarily mean a home that is driven around, it’s basically a home that is able to be transported, like a trailer, and plopped on the land. It is the cheapest pre-built option, but they’re known to not last as long as normal homes, and the financing options are less preferable compared to normal houses. It is, however, the type of home that 95% of the neighborhood has, so we would fit in rather well.

Option two, the most expensive, but the easiest to finance, would be a traditional on-site built home. Builders come out, construct the house, and there it is.

Option three, which seems the most preferable, is modular housing. Basically, the house is built in parts off-site, but it is plopped down on-site in parts, and built in a manner that makes it basically just as good as a normal on-site built house. It’s slightly cheaper, but harder to customize, and it can be financed like a normal house.

Option four, we build a kit house. Super cheap, but with expensive financing. We’d have to do all the work ourselves, and it’s hard to find good ones these days.

Option five, we build an earthbag or cob house. Super, ultra cheap (we wouldn’t even need it financed), but requires more regular maintenance. If we do it right, it will last forever, but if we do it wrong, it won’t last very long at all. It also requires an obscene amount of physical labor. But if we did it, I could legitimately say I built a house.

Now, option three, as I said, is the most preferable option. But my wife and I want to return to a more natural lifestyle. A life that is closer to the earth, a life that is closer to nature, and closer to our roots as human beings. We want to garden, we want to farm. So honestly? I am super interested in option five. I’m super interested in building a house from scratch, using earth-based materials. Because yes, it can be done and look like a normal house. Perhaps not normal by American standards, but normal by world standards.

And it’s cheap, like, super cheap. As in, if I put in all the work myself, I could build an earthbag house for 10k, as opposed to a house build with standard materials of similar size for 150k. Big, big difference.

Visitor

18 more fuggin’ days. So looking forward to our visit from a faraway Dobie.

She had a job interview yesterday that went pretty well. She was super stressed that they would outright deny her because of her upcoming trip, thankfully they’re fine with it. Only point of concern is that they’re interviewing other applicants as well, so she has competition, but she said the interview went well, so I hope she has a good chance! Either way, I’m stoked that the job didn’t tell her she’d have to cancel her trip. That would have been a real bummer.

Wife

So, my wife popped out of the bathroom yesterday, completely naked, in front of our roommate. It was pretty hot. Like, instant-boner hot. Apparently exhibitionism is a kink for me.

Addendum

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