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Good news:

Went to the Sterling Lord christmas party and MY GOD, ARE THESE A BUNCH OF TALENTED, WONDERFUL, SWEET and SMART HARDASS PEOPLE.  Open bar that was so classy, so covered that it was rude to tip.  No, I don’t want your house cocktail, let’s go straight to the perfectly made classics, thanks!

I went mostly to christmas and party, and mostly to be j’s +1 and scope out her scene that I so so love and support.  It’s a workplace she loves – LOVES – working at – as she should, unlike her last house which via intimidation, succesfully negated their workers movement to unionize.  (Article alludes to how fucked up that small press was….AND ITS PUBLISHER’S WEEKLY.  They’re usually on the side of a publisher….) But there were writers, agents, big honchos, people who know technical aspects of contractual stuff which make my head spin, influencers…..like, as an example, I bumped into (or rather, was bumped into) the most spry, awesome, impish elderly lady, asked her what she did around to help me remember meeting her later and everyone around me sort of stiffened.  I went “uh oh.”  and she smiled and waved me closer, I leaned in and she whispered into my ear

I own the company.”

As memory has it, she proceeded to run then away before coming back and doing things that only amazing people do.

I met the sci-fi person, and, this is one of those times MAYBE I could elevator pitch but, I DONT WANNA. Not only do I think my edits have gotten better to the point that I want to finish what I’m doing with my work, but I was there to have a real conversation, which we did.  Wound up talking about the stuff around writing, I brought up my appreciation for Stephen King as a speaker, and personable story-teller (that’s what makes him shine for me, much more than the horror) and it was nice being able to see her smile and guy “You know, he’s also really nice. :-)”

I wanted to send good follow up vibes because I sure as heck meant ’em, I just got vibes that genuine and great, but it’s too easily considered as sucking up with all the skin we have in the game.  I don’t believe acting in a conflict of interests, so I’ve just had to deal with that glow, just me and J.

But all in all, it was a christmas party that compared to the first one we went to, proves how we (and her, really – mostly her) have come such a long way. It was so casual and special for me at the same time, which is one of the best blends.  They made great conversation basic because, I was surrounded by lovers of books.  Not pop culture dependents.  Not gossipers.  Not people who are easily threatened by words (if at all) but  driven, thinking, calculating, aware, fun-loving, productive 3d citizens.  I loved it.  Woke up the next day swimming in warm, fuzzy memories of great encounters, and I’m just so, goshdurn proud of where J’s going.  For me, at this stage, that kind of an open bar’s a once in a lifetime.

 

Bad news:

My grandmother’s in the hospital.  Major seizure. Folks spoke of her like she’s brain dead….next to her….and while I was literally thinking to ask “Do we have any thoughts on a DNR?” and before I did….her brow furrowed.   She looked like she was about to cry.  I pointed this out to my cousin and dad who were with me and focused on each other, and I also went over, rubbed her head and yes, I guess started using tones like she’s a wounded cat, and her expression softened.  Dad went over and grabbed her hand and told her to squeeze….she did.   (Palmar reflex IS a thing, however. That alone means little.)  He proceeded to literally pry her eyes open (they were stuck together….) and her retina oriented.  I called the sister on speaker, and jessica monologued in the room, and my grandmother oriented to the phone. This is a big deal because my father, her son, has a vivid memory of “seeing the light go out in her eyes.”  He didn’t expect it to come back. God, he’s being really thick skinned, but believing that has got to stab him deeply on a few levels – he’s a bit of a momma’s boy, and I know him well enough to know that.

I honestly want her, and her soul, as comfortable as fucking possible.  That’s all I want.  She currently can’t swallow, and in her moving around and starting to respond, the feeding tube came halfway out.  Folks, it’s not pretty. She’s pinned and needled, she can’t express, her brain is truly dissolving. The way she reacted before…..the brain damage is real, I’ve seen messed up videos you can only find on today’s internet (things so messed up even I won’t describe them.  Just nope)  and her shifts in expressions, reminds me of people who’ve gotten major head injuries. The movie Little Miss Sunshine had a grandfather who was constantly doping out, and while that took a tragic turn, the old man was comfortable and wickedly enjoying of life until the end.  This is very close to the end but, I think she was listening closely enough that she was processing a deep sadness….really picked up on that. It wasn’t subtle.

 

Party was a great note, but that plus property management’s proving to provide a trialing, tough week.

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