My head is full of random thoughts this evening. Perhaps if I lay enough of them out in a row they can count as a real post. It works for beads and necklaces, right?
I’m not entirely certain where the second half of last week went. Though thinking back there was some birthday preparation, birthday celebration, sickness in the form of head colds, head colds that transformed themselves into chest colds, a sprinkling of appointments, and some work on Planet Mercenary. So if I wanted to go looking for where the week went, I know where to start my search.
We’re two weeks out from LTUE (ltue.net) They’ve put up the finalized schedule and I’m excited for the things I’ll get to talk about.
Managing a Giant Project
Marketing on a Budget
Tragedy in Children’s Literature
Distributing Your Novel
And most particularly for the presentation I’ll get to give:
Putting Emotional Depth into Your Children’s Fiction
It will be a very fun event and if you’re at all interested in genre fiction, either creating or reading, or playing as a video game, or watching on a screen, then LTUE has something that may interest you.
I have many things to accomplish before arriving at LTUE. Fortunately one that I thought would be complicated turned out to be simple. The iPad we used for our cash register got dropped by someone who was trying to take moon pictures in the dark. The cracked screen is not great for customer confidence, so our business shelled out for a replacement. Happily our software works with an iPad mini, so now we have a better, newer, smaller, faster device and it is already running the software we need. It is amazing to me what modern electronics can pack into such a small and slim device. I’m buying a case for it just so it doesn’t feel so fragile. Also so that should it get dropped, it has more projection than the old iPad had. Also, the kids can’t use this one. Especially not for pictures of the moon at night.
This weekend I was reminded that teenage birthday parties are much easier for me to run than little kid parties. I never would have allowed one of my little kids to host a party with fifteen guests. The amount of crowd and behavior management would have made my inner introvert want to flee in terror. But a teen party is fine with that many guests. All I have to do is provide a location and food. In this case the location was an indoor trampoline park. Gleek and Patch can both barely move today after ninety minutes of trampoline tag yesterday. Fun was had by all. My spaces were not invaded, and the birthday went well.
We had a couch with a cracked frame. This was covered under warranty, but we had to haul the couch in question up to the store. My car is small-ish, the smallest it can be while still able to seat six people simultaneously. Yet with all of the rear seats folded down I still have six feet of cargo space. The couch was seven feet long. Some creative bungee cord placement and some slow driving got us from my house to the store. And none of the cushions went flying out, which I knew wasn’t likely, but my anxiety tried to convince me would happen. The store gave us credit which we’ll apply to a new couch of a different model. And we’ll hire their delivery team to bring it to us. (Hiring their delivery team to come pick up the broken one was not an option. I asked and they were confused, so I gave up.) Best of all, we won’t have to attempt to use a cardboard box to shore up the sagging middle as we’ve been doing for the past 3-4 months. Hint: cardboard boxes are insufficiently strong to hold up the middle of a couch with a broken frame.
I attended a College and Career Readiness (CCR) meeting for my twelve year old. The primary purpose of the meeting is to turn in the piece of paper which lists preferred classes for next year so that the counselors can put together schedules. But human beings seem generally incapable of gathering people together without slapping additional ceremony or messages on the event. In this case, they spent multiple metaphors trying to convince show kids the dire dangers of not thinking ahead to college and career. I understand why they do it. It is their job to teach kids about their options and to teach about possible consequences. Yet I always spend these meetings turning to my child and whispering that they should not freak out. They have plenty of time and no one expects them to have their live planned out in seventh grade. I did the same for my son at this meeting. I also spent some time thinking about how the path they were pushing, toward college, loses sight of the fact that the goal is being able to build a life you want. It also didn’t explain the nuance that most people don’t pick one career and stick with it for forty years. People change, they learn new things, they switch jobs, go back to school, start fresh. So even if you choose wrong, all you lose is a little time. You can choose again later. We picked some classes and escaped.
I just finished Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson. I’ll end this conglomeration of thoughts with my favorite quote from the book.
Don’t make the same mistakes that everyone else makes. Make wonderful mistakes. Make the kind of mistakes that make people so shocked that they have no other choice but to be a little impressed.