News from Richard Bleil
Well today was interesting. Keep in mind, this is posting about a week after I write it, but some interesting developments, good, bad and indifferent today.
As I write this, it’s in the low ‘50’s outside, a temperature that would have felt oh so balmy a few weeks ago but is absolutely frigid today. It’s overcast, but not raining (and not predicted to rain as far as I know) making it dark, gloomy and perfect for the Halloween season. I opted to visit the zoo today.
For those who may not know, I purchased a one-year season pass. Today I’ve been joking about it, saying I only need to visit 354.21 times for it to pay for itself, and I get a 10% discount on all of my purchases so the hot dog only cost me $45.00. Of course, both are a joke; about five visits will probably pay for the pass, and you can always expect zoo food prices to be a little bit higher but I really do get a discount. I don’t mind the prices, though, as it supports a good cause.
There are a few logistical issues with the zoo, though. For example, you can buy a large drink with a souvenir cup that is actually very expensive (over $9), but you can get it refilled for very little money on subsequent visits. However, most of the buildings are marked “no food or drink), so you can’t refill it then go into (with a clear conscious) many of the building, and on a cold day like today, it’s the indoor displays you want to see the most. But these minor inconveniences aside, it’s actually a very cool zoo. I just need to remember not to get ice in my drink next time as usually I’m just waiting for it to melt as I deny myself admission.
My friend advertised her upcoming annual event for charity. It’s “Second Life”, basically a video game marathon. Her charity of choice is the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals in Scotland because, well, that’s where she lives. I upped my donation from last year by $5, which she seems to think is enormously generous, and although it isn’t necessary to do so, it did spark a text conversation between us. She has recently started her doctoral program (I’m so proud of her but not surprised in the least) and mentioned that she is learning the Python computer programming language. As it turns out, I am as well, so there’s yet another thing we have in common. I think we each have a new study buddy for the process. I’m not sure what she plans to do with it, but for me, it’s mainly for database mining and number crunching, although I may eventually need to overlay data to a map.
For those who don’t remember, I have a life-size skeleton (designed for educational purposes) in a little upstairs hallway alcove just outside of my bedroom. I had no idea what to put there, so, heck, a skeleton it is. I had previously purchased a dress from a friend of mine to put on her, and both heels and a necklace from a thrift store. I won a kind of handbag and it’s over her shoulder and gave her a hat from my Ren Fair garb. A week or two ago I went to a Halloween store and bought her a platinum blonde “Marilyn” wig. I’ve even been spritzing her with perfume. She’s looking pretty good, but she still needs eyes (I should have bought them with the wig). When I was a child, you could buy rubber balls painted like eyeballs, so I’ll be looking for those. Blue, of course. My friend said there are also jaw breakers that are made to look like eyes. How often can you legitimately say, “well, yes, but I don’t want to put jawbreakers into her eye sockets”? Apparently, though, rubber balls are fine.
Tonight was supposed to be my comedy gig for charity in Sioux Falls. The event was not approved by the organization it was going to benefit, so it was canceled. It’s unfortunately, too, as I had some good material for it (and wholly original). It’s kind of disappointing, to be honest with you, that I won’t be able to perform. I’m wondering if I should contact the local casinos and seeing if I can audition for a regular paying gig. I’m at an unfortunate age for comedy, though. I’m too old to be a hip young comedian, but I’m not George Burns age either. I sure do miss George, though.
So that’s it, now you’re all caught up with my life. I know, you were worried.