So I was blogging on my other site…when the database connection…well, it crashed. So the host found the issue and are working on it…good times. It also is not just me who has been affected by this error. Somewhat comforting I am not alone in this?  Anyway, to not forgo a Mabon post I did put one on the backup site until the other is fixed–which actually was just now fixed.  Good job them, less than an hour of the issue.  Woot!

Naturally, now I am really debating…do I want to use my real name or no? At first I was worried that the site down was a hack, I always worry about that because hackers are smart and I am just a writer. Knowing the ins and outs of the tech world is a lot of work as it stands. To learn all of that and pursue writing is a great deal too much time taken away from writing. When it comes to tech stuff, I may know a little, but it is just that, a little.

Then there is that what I do during the day to earn a living problem, people can get very judgmental as to what I should be like after work hours. If I pen down something and people put two and two together and decide to kick a fuss and fret to my superiors…I am almost to the point of not caring though too. Honestly, there are others like me who have penned by far more than me as they were not worried as I am. Seriously, I am human, imperfect in every way just as the rest of humanity. Unless we all become robots or are taken over by robots, in which case they can all piss off I am joining Reese and fighting against Skynet.  Either way, winning.  So that concern has lessened.

There are also those special people on the Internet who can track you down, and make life very uncomfortable or short. Still a concern, but again percentage wise, and the fact that other writers put their names out there, whatever to that concern. Looking at my heroes: The Bloggess, Hot Nerd Girl, JK Rowling, Christopher Stasheff, Terry Goodkind, and Christopher Moore.  Hell with it. If they can take a risk why not?  There is that logic too.  Once more into the breech.

Now to that song, it deals with my father and my artistic self.

Recently, I had a long conversation with my father. Hard to do as he is in Oman currently. Still we talked about life, work and all of that. I do not know if it is living abroad, getting wisdom with age or what, but at the end of the day my father said to me, “You are my writer. Just write.”

This is unusually supportive for my father. He used to caution us on being practical, but now he is more concerned with us losing ourselves to the inertia of life and not being happy. That is what is important.

He lectured me on how I should pursue my passion as that is what matters. There is a whole other post on that issue as other writers have struggled pursuing passion. It happens–it is not a money making jackpot to start and in some cases ever. But at least they are doing it getting their dreams written down in full.

So then being the OCD kid I am I looked into what writers have to do. One, write–need more discipline there but so far so good. Duh. Read, research, and then there is the create an online platform and presence (publishers like it when you already have it sorted, now you need a site, your own Twitter, Facebook page, all of that, and of course they love it if you have a lot followers in advance before investing in you, nice).  Now, I already have an alter-ego created that I have not been using much. So maybe screw it and just be me? It makes more sense, and it is more genuine. As Han Solo would say, “Hey, it’s me.”

While all of this debate in my head took place, I caught a cold. And then this song came on the radio. Colleen, I thought you may get a kick out of this. This is my one song.

It is totally cheesy and I admit it fully. I feel we all have that song we are ashamed to admit we love, and this happens to be mine.

It was the song that I played over and over as kid, drove my family nuts. But it is a special song.  I was drawn to it because I thought it was referring to an artist’s painting canvas and it coincided with the literal sailing canvas. To me it is this metaphor for art and exploration, and finding truth in wandering the dream world and eventually returning with that truth to the real world.

For my father, it was the song that played while he and my mother were temporarily separated, while he figured out whether or not he could make that marriage work. He was literally on sail boat with his friends pondering this crossroad in his life.

I did not know my father’s connection to that song until I was older and they were divorced. Yet, that we were both drawn to that song to me makes it even more special. And likewise it makes me feel his message again. Just write. Do not give up. He has seen his sister no longer pursue her art and he does not want me to follow the same path. I can appreciate his concern that I will end the same–with uncompleted dreams lying around me. So it is that even in writing this, I think a decision has formed.

Now all I have to sort out is how that will look.

Kilts and Unicorns

Well…yeah…so, I have been all about and things will settle come October…just have to get there. Not to mention Mabon is coming soon. Woot! One of my favorite holidays as apples and honey are in the primary mix.

On to where I have been. Well, celebrating a friend’s birthday at the Long’s Peak Scottish Festival has been a part of my “What has she been up to,” while I was absent from blogging here. That and writing of course…just not blog writing.

A few things to be brief as to how was the festival–

One: disappointment that the caber tossers were not shirtless. Instead they wore kilts, which was good, but then they had these very bright orange t-shirts. Orange? Really? There are other colors after all…like why not white or green? So we could see them from afar. If so, yeah, it worked.


I cannot get over the orange factor.

Now, I myself am not into the burly guy look. Seriously, refer back to my affinity for Benedict Cumberbatch, Ben Browder, Cary Elwes, Harrison Ford, Michael Biehn, etc. I tend to prefer leaner looking guys with intelligence and sassy wit. Always have. That is just how I roll I suppose. That said, seeing caber tossers wearing obnoxiously bright 90’s esque t-shirts kinda took away from the earthy Scottish awesome vibe to the games. At least they had kilts and they were rowdy in humor–with that and mountains some of a Highland feel was preserved.

Two: beautiful. It was in Estes Park which is one of my favorite mountain areas and towns.

Three: crowded a bit as the Highlands Ranch festival moved to Aspen this year and therefore more people came to Estes for this festival than usual.

Four: it was awesome and I did not know there was actual professional jousting! I am not talking Renaissance Festival staged jousting but professional league competition for cash. Complete with judges, target on armor, and sweet lance breaking. Seriously my inner history nerd was a – twitter while the announcer droned on about scores. Just to think that is similar to how the lords and ladies expericed it back in the day…though we had shade and better seating I am sure. Whatever, one guy got unhorsed in such a way I thought I was on a film set! ‘Twas fairly epic.

And of course the jousters had humor too. I was rooting for the knight with the unicorn. He was raising awareness for breasts cancer hence the pink and I am fairly sure the unicorn was just for awesome factor. The dragon knight was pretty stout of heart too and I think came in second? Red dragon versus Falcor–the man should have gone with a luck dragon in retrospect, he could have gotten first.


Also reminded me of the meme about riding a unicorn and stabbing idiots with the unicorn ' s horn. Either way I was all for team Stabby.

It was hectic. Then Shelly and I took Christine to Lonigan’s to see Angus Mohr for her birthday celebration. Fantastic as ever they were pipes, Billy Idol, “Clumsy Lover” and all our favorite Angus tunes.

The only thing lacking was time to go to Moon Kats for tea. Maybe sometime in October?

Last bit to the festival–I did see that my favorite Celtic artist was there and my grandmother’s clan was there as well. Really need to make it to Scotland at some point for the every “five year gathering.”

As to my favorite artist, Jen Delyth (check out her work, so much Celtic awesome: Celtic Art Studio of Jen Delyth), I found her work four years ago and have loved her art ever since. Really want to get her Celtic Tree of Life as a tapestry at some point.


That...absolutely love that tapestry. Heck I love the throw pillows too. So much good Celtic work. She has tshirts too. Love the fox knotwork t-shirt...I know, love her work. Check it out guys.

Meantime, the writing is going well and I am finding some balance with work and writing…just a tad tricky doing the whole working, exercising, writing, and blogging balancing act. I would share more…but I have to get more done and it is sort of a surprise. Before I am public with it, it may be a while. I confess that but it is so nice making progress with it. So that much I will share for now. Also, may have to start using my real name. That is another writer dilemma story I will wait on…for now. Yet, if Niaaeryn changes, you will know why. Still working logistics and assessing risks on all of that.

Back to work, writing, and all of that goodness.


Now that is more what I had in mind. :)

A Few Things

I swear I know too many film lines…I am reminded of the Godfather II, “Just when I get out they pull me back in.” Though I doubt I could pull off Pacino’s intensity…or more accurately I doubt I would as intimidating. No, I am fairly certain my frustration would come across as adorable…damn it.

Anyway, while working on this profound post that requires a video (I blog mainly on my phone now, so videos require an actual pc so those posts take longer to finish) my hot water heater said, “deuces” to me and began dripping water in ways it had never before.

I have to give it credit for a great run though–18 years. Once you think all is well, the house little fix-its pull you back in…”I knew it was you Fredo…you broke my heart…” I texted Jess late night as I know she has a lot of experience with hot water heaters…looks like replacement needed…le sigh.

So I went for a second opinion, or twelve as it turned out, posting my dilemma to friends and family on Facebook. Oh the options for do-it-yourself repairs, almost heartening, definitely a tad intimidating, but bright side, I now know quite a few in my world who have connections to plumbers, this may come in handy one day. Huzzah for friends and family!


I really tried to not be afraid...but I still called a trusted plumber, after all it was more complicated than wax on, wax off.

Yet, I confess I also began to get a bit sad, as I missed a blogging friend when all this came up. So it was with a sad smirk I reflected on the do-it-yourself options offered on Facebook and kept thinking of the word “feck.”

I ended up calling a trusted professional, it was plumbing and I am leary of messing with gas and water in one go. It turned out, oh so much more going on with the heater than a valve issue–replacement was more cost effective, and now tis done and good to go for winter.

Totally unrelated but in a way it is as it reminds me of my earlier Godfather vibe to my home issues of late–now there is an issue with the wasps residing in my patio fence.

Did you know that wasps are not good neighbors? You probably already knew that, but my friend Shelly happens to be friends with an actual entomologist–a bug guy as it were with a degree in them and everything. Now, he may love bugs but even he says wasps are just evil. They are carnivorous, eat bees and other bugs, yet they do not pollinate. To boot they are wickedly territorial and these little irate ninjas managed to house themselves in the tiniest of spaces between the post and my patio…grrr.


Wasps...they are just a - holes.

They recently intruded on my sacred inside space, and so it was I went to Home Depot. There I got the stuff to basically perform insecticide and the lady warned me, cover up as much as you can and be ready to run right back in. She had been attacked even in the evening when they are sleepy. That is comforting…yeah no, not really. I have so far managed to never have been knowingly stung by any bee-like creature, this may ruin my streak. Still, on to battle Wednesday when weather conditions are more favorable per wind and sans rain (the stuff which I hate to think what is in it specifies no rain when using).

To illustrate the need to throw down with these winged demons, when inspecting the area last night one of them came out and stood guard as I hit it with my flashlight, kind of like, “ya lookin’ at me? Ya wanna piece of this sweetheart?”

I swear it was glaring at me.

I will keep you all updated, and with any luck I can keep my streak. Maybe I should watch the Godfather? Or Goodfellas? Not really my sort of flick, maybe I will settle for Kill Bill and channel Beatrice Kiddo instead?

Maybe I am going too human for this…maybe this is how I should prepare to battle the wasps?


The wasps may not stand a chance.

Beauty by Design

We have been in quite a few meetings, and now my coworkers and I are back in full…well sort of. I already took Friday off for a thing I could not cancel and apparently missed a bit of drama. I am calling it luck as I never do that so early. Still all is well over there that is good. As to said drama from what I gather handled well too, so good for the new boss.

Anyway, before that nonsense my coworkers and I caught up with one another–talked about travels, explained tans, in my case sported a rather indulgent pedicure experience prior to the start of the year…


Huzzah for cute pedicures and flowers on one's feet with rhinestones. ..decadent and adorable :)

My friend Shelly and I discussed all the girly things women do for beauty…some of us going to more extremes than others. Then for whatever the reason we turned our attention on men and what is considered their area of beautification. Then it just became one of those academic gender, society, and beauty sort of discussions.

With the advent of the metro sexuals, and now gender flexibility (some do not identify as any gender at all, that is a thing) what truly is “man only” or “woman only” beauty regimes? Do they even exist?

First, the manis and the pedis. And our conclusion–not gender specific. Pedicures are not only for ladies. For example, I saw a manly guy getting one alongside his girlfriend when I was out getting my tootsies of cuteness done. I see nothing wrong with this, as a guy with well tended feet is attractive. Same goes with manicures. Well cared for hands are nice on guys. So hand and footcare are for both genders, no biggie.

Makeup? Well, I would say that is not necessarily gender specific either per se (there may always be exceptions I guess). Also, one must consider the whole wearing or not wearing it. Which is the trend? Here it gets squiffy.

For wearing it, well, actors wear makeup all the time and I find many ruggedly handsome still despite the little bit of eyeliner (granted I am intently looking at them on screen and yes, I see that bit of eyeliner, whatever, still attractive and I do not think less of them at all). Foundation? Not a big deal. Now we could quantify the amount of makeup, or boldness could be gender specific, but for argument’s sake, theatre leads me to be lenient in labeling makeup as gender specific beauty routines.


I think we have all been there at some point, even the poor Winter Soldier.

Here also came up the whole some ladies do not wear makeup or cannot (allergies for us all vary, lord knows it took me forever to find eyeshadow my allergies were okay with). Does that make one a tomboy? Or as I see it, just natural beauty sans makeup. Nothing wrong with that either. Makeup, with or without, no gender bias (though we found men are more likely to go without makeup, not a biggie but may be a gender line…ish?).

So, we then we went on to beards. That may be society’s last hold out for gender bias and beauty regime. At this time, it is not considered feminine beauty to sport facial hair. Here we may have found the only bastion of division based on biology. Females generally cannot grow mustaches or beards…


Sometimes it is, and sometimes you are just tracking it on the floor...glitter is kind of evil if you think about it actually.

Yet, there are those who as we age, or just the way Nature dealt cards, do have a bit of facial hair more than the average girl. Hair dying, threading, waxing, plucking, ladies go to extreme and painful lengths at times to rid themselves of facial hair.

Which then led me to wonder. Much as mani and pedis are no longer girls only, and makeup is slowly becoming less girl only…will this ever be a thing? Could ladies one day be judged as more attractive if they too sported a goatee?


Harley Quinn...she could be ahead of her time...we're sure she is not a smidgen crazy.

I find it highly unlikely, but you never know what the next thing may be. After all in the middle ages women shaved their hair back, way back, just to have a high forehead. It was “in”. I do not see facial hair on women as a desired thing, but in a 100 years you never know.

After all for a brief time their was the Merman beard link (dying your beard green, I put in the link so you would not think I am high or something, this was a trend) and an even briefer flowers in the beard…didn’t something like that happen in the 1700’s but it was like large wigs with all out birdcages in some of them?

What we do for fashion’s sake, both men and women…sometimes I think we all deserve an award or some recognition for surviving an era of fashion. Like, congratulations you made it through the 90’s plaid phase without becoming a lumberjack, or being too down, or questioning your heritage. Well done, you.


It is scary how accurate this is in so many ways. Trends come and go way too quickly. Well spoken, Mr. Mugato.

A Moment

Today is a day of reflection for many, and grief, and processing. I imagine he would want us to look on the bright side. I think I managed a bit at first, and then fairly well after that.

After shopping for supplies with a work friend, my sister called. We talked about a great deal and then we reminisced fondly of her earlier FB post conveying her love of The Last Starfighter. It is a love shared by my whole family and for me the film also has memories of which even now I was reminded of fondly.


I then recalled my love of smarts and smart asses, which led my mind to a new fandom I have fallen into recently. Now, I hope not to lose Sci-fi or Fantasy cred, but I am also a fan of the BBC’s Sherlock series with Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman. I categorize it under my love of things intelligent, sassy, and classy (and in this case British).


Sherlock and Watson/Cumberbatch and Freeman

It also fits with my love of Chaucer, Shakespeare, Dr. Who, The IT Crowd, Last Week Tonight, just about any Simon Pegg and Nick Frost film…okay, I may very well be a bit of an Anglophile but I am also clearly a Celtphile (difficult to have the two at once but seems to work for me–yes I love both).

As to Sherlock, the series is so well done. I love all of the characters and especially the fact that the series admits it should not be taken too seriously. The creators, cast, and crew are just fabulous. The intricacies of the plots are likewise fascinating as you never know when one small bit of information in one show will reveal itself three episodes later. You have to keep on your toes and you can always get more aha moments if you rewatch an episode, if you wanted.

Now as a self-proclaimed sapiosexual you can guess part of my draw. Smart men, well, yeah. I swoon. Now for my favorite memes from the show, enjoy. :)


Sherlock is always so happy at a crime scene and Watson is like...wha??? You know a normal reaction to a crime scene.


I think we all know someone who makes us think this at some time or another.

And then this detective genius has one minor issue… his obsession with being clever…or solving crimes…


In fairness his exercises do come in handy at times.


And I am not even concerned, love Sherlock. :)

After all we can all relate I think at times to Mr. Holmes …


C'mon John...also the Hobbit reference is classic. ;)

Sometimes it is more like this, almost a brooding solitude, but again we can still relate on some days…


Yet, you have to give the show credit. It is well written. Part of the reason Sherlock never gets Greg Lestrade’s name correct is because in the series he is only known as G. Lestrade. The character’s name is never given by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Hence Sherlock always gets it wrong…and here is a shout out to the infamous line, “Not our division.” It became a hit in many departments as I understand it. A true classic.


Poor Lestrade sometimes...and then next minute, brilliant.

I guess in the end for me it is just that they are all smart asses. I love it. Moriarty is likewise perfect (evil, crazy, and sassy)…and the reason I want “Staying Alive” as my ringtone.


I love that this lead female in the series flat out says smart is the new sexy, and she is too...such a great show. ;)

I know, I know, what a show right? Just a pity that as these are working (and awesome) actors, they have other commitments, so it will be a while yet before Season 4 is out. Sigh. So looking forward to the Christmas Special at least that should be out this year.

Despite the wait, do not worry…I am okay with being a part of this fandom too. It will be so worth it, and it will be brilliant, I have no doubt. :)

I know, I lapsed again, but with good cause. I was in the mountains with friends…twice…because I felt like living up vacation and going out of WiFi range since today began the dipping of my foot back into work-life–which is in full swing this Thursday. Ah…woot?

Some changes at work, the boss is new, well, two bosses are new and a general shift in staff, so now the building even feels…well…lighter in a good way. Whether or not this changes things for the better in the long run, only the year will tell, but already a better start so that is nice.

Now, one funny thing to share…maybe not funny but my reaction garnered a few giggles–freaking squirrels.



Should I say our squirrel overlords?

See we had two cases of plague in Colorado, both in more of the plain areas, but rodents of all kinds and cuteness (including squirrels) can carry that. The Black Death, even at our altitude, can happen–mountains, plains, wherever. The infected flea rides on said rodent and at times can jump off and nib on a human injecting a wee bit of the plague in exchange for a wee bit of blood.

The trick is getting antibiotics as soon as possible should you become symptomatic (ie. when you even have an inkling you have been bitten and infected by a pesky little flea), and thanks to Science you now have a 50/50 shot of living–much better than the odds back in the day, so good on Science.

Well, I generally do not like getting ill, or mosquito bites at all so I sprayed up with bug spray and also a bit of sunblock, of course, before the hike.

Now by the time we hit the falls we are all sweaty and decided to take a lunch break. After all, beautiful falls in this beautiful national forest. Why not?


Rocky Mountain National Park.

That is when the cutest little ground squirrel approached us clearly unafraid of humans and began to act cute and beg for food. My reaction to the plump little sandwich begging hussy was to try to shoo her away–cuteness or not there is plague out there, and in general this is not a good habit for the squirrels to rely on humans for food.

I thought it worked…but with ninja skill the little vagrant came from behind me and brushed against my leg before I even noticed she was that close to me. Once in front of me, she stood up on her legs but an inch from my foot demanding payment in food crumbs. It was almost like a forest mafia shakedown.


From icanhazcheezburger.com. It felt a lot like this...tough little rodent.

My friend was more successful and shooing away this squirrel from the Thunder Dome better than I. Naturally, my neurotic self began to worry if the squirrel was infected with said flea, did my bug spray hold out…and more importantly: if there ever was a zombie disease apocalypse squirrels would be the best carriers. In fact, who is to say that maybe somewhere in the mountains and forests of the world squirrels are not just training in secret for that very thing?

Imagine it, what if these adorable little rodents were more intelligent than we give them credit for? Like they are geniuses from another world much like the dolphins from Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and they are biding their time? Eventually when they feel ready to exude their power and take over the world it will be by unleashing a zombie epidemic with their ninja squirrels (after all almost every continent has squirrels). They will then infect us all and then rule the world after the zombies die out after eventual starvation.

Maybe they will spare a few to gather their food and build shelters for out new squirrel overlords?


They may even be Vikings, like descendants of Loki rather than from outer space. Deadly either way.

I know way too much thought behind that theory. Still, I am alive and plague free so far, so I am happy about that.

But a public service announcement: please do not feed the wildlife, even cute harmless looking squirrels. It makes them unafraid of humans and too dependent on humans…bad for both humans and animals in the long run.


Sometimes it is best to just appreciate beauty and not interact with Nature so much.

Do you want the plague? Because that is how you get the plague.

While I am waiting for the updates to load on my tablet, one last but on my outing to California.

My stepmother, Ella, was gracious to whisk me away for about a day to San Diego. I had never been and always wanted to see it. I heard the beaches were fantastic, and there was a haunted house I wanted to see (primary knowledge of this place came from The History Channel, please do not judge).

The beach, yes they do get sharks down there was the warning I did get, but my were they outstanding! Great sand, surf, cold, but simply lovely. We went to Pacific Beach and I was in love with it.


View pulling in, did not want to get my phone covered in sand.

It reminded me of Surfer’s Paradise in Australia a bit, though not quite as large. Blue water, fine taupe sand…beautiful.

Then we toured around to the old cemetery. It was a mission cemetery and the local historical society did what it could to preserve the old graves. I had never seen such a place before. People would leave coins on some of the graves, or candy. There was a superstition there but we did not know what it was exactly, but I found it fascinating.


This was a snippet of the cemetery. They tried to mark the graves as best they could, and often there were informational stands nearby as to who they were.

Ella explained to me that in California the history behind the missions and the mission trails were an integral part of California history taught in many elementary classes.

Then we came to one my favorite pit stops–a well preserved Victorian home, known as the Whaley House. The pieces inside each room were well kept. There was also a haunted history tour, but only for the evenings. Alas, we would settle for history more so than ghosts. It was still cool.


One of the children's rooms...and yes, the dolls were a tad creepy, but period.

For me though the theatre upstairs is what caught my attention. It had an old true to form theatre complete with a sloped stage. Yes!! This, this right here is where theatre people get the upstage, downstage…all of that because it literally is up or down. I cannot tell you how often I have had to explain that to an incredulous crew. Here it was!! I felt so vindicated.


It really did have a sloping stage. Ah...proof and history well preserved.

When theatre began again in the medieval era, the stages often were set up and torn down hurriedly. They were likewise sloped so the people on the ground could see all of the action going on all over the stage. In time the theatre seats would allow for a non-sloped stage, but not in such a space as this. Hence the slope.

The Victorians of California clearly valued theatre to have such here at all, but sadly the troupe founder passed shortly after they opened the theatre.

It was a pity the founder of the acting troupe did not get to enjoy it’s use more. That was a risk of the era, and the wildness of the West. I do tip my hat off to the ladies who were determined to bring and keep culture in early California even in the heady days of gold rushes and revolutions.


The breeze came in just so to catch my dress, and my stepmother noted that there was just something about me and this theatre. I suppose the theatre agreed.


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