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Oct. 27th, 2006 @ 02:17 pm Everybody can sleep safe, they got my hand lotion and toothpaste. . .
Current Location: Harlingen International Airport
Current Mood: enragedenraged
Just about to escape the surly bonds of the Valley.

On the way down, Austin Bergstrom confiscated my toothpaste but passed my extra-special tube of hand lotion from the spa at Ojo Caliente.

Well, the good people at Harlingen International have decided that I'm a danger to myself and others with $30 of hand lotion in my possession and were good enough to toss it in the trash for me.

Of course, if I'd been willing to check a bag and risk losing that to the vaguries of Southwest Airlines, I *could* have gotten out of the screening line, gone back to stand in the ticketing line, put the lotion in my bag and checked it.

It was worth an additional $30 to get the f**k out of the Valley that much sooner.

Thank you NTSA, I feel *so* much safer now that you've taken all the toothpaste and hand lotion away from all of us would be MacGyvers.
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Oct. 26th, 2006 @ 11:41 am Wasted Days and Wasted Nights
Current Location: San Benitio, Texas
Current Mood: aggravatedaggravated
Current Music: Freddie Fender's Greatest Hits
I'm currently hanging out with my 81-year-old Father in Extreme South Texas (it's not the end of the world, but you can see it from here).

While here I'm trying to get a bit of research done on The Big Bird of South Texas.

No, this has nothing to do with Seasame Street.

The Big Bird was a alien animal that I remember from my childhood. A bit of rudimentary research has 'devil bird' reports going back as far as the locals can remember, and that's a good long bit.

So, we rolled up to the brand spankin' new Harlingen Public Library and with a bit of searching found someone who could get the microfiche reader up and running.

It malfuncioned after printing the first ten pages. It could have been out of paper. It could have had a paper jam. It was beyond the technological savvy of the guy keeping the computers from walking out the door (man, it wasn't all that long ago *that* was my job and boy howdy was I overqualified) who promised to leave a note for the morning staff.

This morning I called to find out what the diagnosis was.

They didn't get the note and the gal on duty was not permitted to leave her post to check the machine.

I'm waiting for the gal who can check the machine to show up. Any bets?

Just a guess, but this is probably passive-aggressive-Valley-speak for 'piss-off, we're busy with MySpace'.


My parents live just up the road from the San Benito City Cemetery where recently deceased home-town-celebrity Freddy Fender was just buried. I should take a picture as we have to drive by it to go anywhere. There's a dirt field next door to a traditional old mexican cemetery. In the middle front of this empty field is a huge pile of withering greenery. Under that is Freddy Fender's grave. There was only one space next to his mother's grave in the old cemetery and Freddie's wife wants to be buried next to him. So they put him in the brand new annex. . .

According to my Father, there are plans to make a big memorial.

With the manyana principle firmly in place, I'm pretty sure Freddy is gonna be all by himself with his withering flowers for quite a while.

Never thought I would be so eager to head back to Austin. . .
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Oct. 24th, 2006 @ 05:22 pm Aaeeeiiiiii!
Current Mood: anxiousanxious

I'm *so* not going to these people's Friday Fish Fry. . .

David and I saw this message on a church in West Texas yesterday.

Anyhoo, I'm home for today and have to leave tomorrow for the Valley for an enforced parental visit. :(

I'll be back Friday and hopefully back on schedule by Monday. Just in time for the insanity of World Fantasy. . .

Thanks for everyone's phone calls and well-wishes.

Things are much better today.
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Oct. 21st, 2006 @ 12:14 pm Taking a powder
Current Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Current Mood: distresseddistressed
Due to a poisonous dose of Ambien (if you know anyone currently taking Ambien, ask them to find an alternative-- please), a series of very nasty mis-understandings and a two-day hell-bent-for-leather truck drive, I am currently hiding out in New Mexico.

David has hopped a flight to convince me to come back and should be arriving in about twenty minutes.

We should should be back in Texas ('cuse me while I spit) in a day or two.

Heavily edited story to follow
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Oct. 15th, 2006 @ 08:11 pm War On Terrorable Diseases
Current Mood: enragedenraged
(insert the sound of inarticulate rage from Daffy Duck when Bugs Bunny kept screwing with his world behind the scenes in 'Duck Amuck')

It was reported last week that the Daily Show contains just as many facts as broadcast news.

Ya gotta admit, that's pretty f'ed up, right there.

We're relying on The Daily Show and Jon Stewart to hoist the evil f**ktards in charge by their own petard as no 'reputable' news show in the 'free' world will do it.


Friday's episode was especially on target. Those of us siding with the House and Senate in favor of stem-cell research are just getting our terminology wrong if we want to get W on our side. . .


Mmmm. Baby smoothies. . .
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Oct. 12th, 2006 @ 05:43 pm The Mexican border is perfectly secure. What parade?
Current Mood: apatheticapathetic
The Mexican border is still just as open as I remember it from my youth.

Would you believe a guy crossed it down near Brownsville with three elephants and a mariachi band?


Now that's cojones.
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Oct. 11th, 2006 @ 10:28 pm The One and Only. . .
Current Mood: amusedamused
Once again I'm stealing from Chris Robinson's web site (http://www.chrisroberson.net/ramble.html)

How many people in the US share your name?

Apparently, there are 82 Tara Wheelers.

LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

Maybe I should write under my maiden name as there's only one Tara Carstensen. . .

LogoThere is:
person with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

Both my sister, Kira Carstensen and my poor neice (gods, this kid's gonna catch hell for her name when she gets a bit older) Carsten Charington have achieved the equavalent of a Googlewhack as there are no records listed for either name. . .
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Oct. 8th, 2006 @ 10:51 pm Where the hell's my smut?!?
Current Mood: frustratedfrustrated
Just finished watching Part 1 of 'Cassanova' and all the smut's been cut out of it!

(insert sounds of inarticulate rage)

Fine! Dragon's Lair has ordered the *British* edition. I *will* have my smut!
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Porn, porn, porn!
Oct. 7th, 2006 @ 09:18 pm National Novel Writing Month
Alright, a few months back I tried following the instructions of a book called 'First Draft in 30 Days'.

The novel I was working on (and am still working on) turned out to be far too complicated for that set up, so the plan fell by the wayside.

I heard a little about National Novel Writing Month last year on NPR.

This year, I heard about it again, but this time it was in time to actually do something about it. I went and did some reasearch and this sounds like way too much fun to stay out of.

The plan is to 50,000 words in 30 days. You have complete permission to suck. You are to choose something fun to write about that won't get you too hung up. Then write, write, write. And get all sorts of people to support you in your mad endevor.

Have I mentioned the insane amount of support involved? Seems like there are groups getting together for this every twenty miles in Central Texas. Last year Austin placed *third in the world* for word count. People are quite keen to do better this year (!?!) I will be attending 'NaNo' write-ins in Austin, San Marcos and possibly Lockhart. The official website has a forum to ask for help and get kicks in the pants.

Speaking of kicks in the pants, the 'kit' includes 'Onerosity' Cupons for your friends and loved ones to fill out with horrible things you agree to do if you don't meet your word counts. So far, David has me signed up to eat a salad without dressing and my Father has me signed up to say something nice about W. Other cupons are out and I'm awaiting worse tasks. . .

So, this Halloween I will not be attending my usual showing of the 'Rocky Horror Picture Show'; I'll be counting down 'till 12am, November 1st when I'll have to have 1,667 words down by the following midnight.

Anyone who wants in on this, I'd be more than happy to help with your support group.

Anyone who wants to help me would be greatly appreciated.

Wish me luck!

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Oct. 6th, 2006 @ 12:41 pm Advanced Squee Alert!!
This weekend, PBS will (hopefully) present something American fangirls have been eagarly anticipating for the last year:

Masterpiece Theatre
"Casanova" (part 1 of 2)

Sunday, October 8, 2006

9 - 10:30 pm

Peter O'Toole and David Tennant portray the world's greatest lover in his nostalgic old age and his action-packed youth in a two-part drama based on the real life of Giacomo Casanova, the infamous 18th-century lothario. Casanova has good advice for those who would emulate him: listen to your lover. (CC, Stereo, DVI)

I've seen some pirated clips and I'm really wondering how much of it they're going to show.

Brits seem to have no problems with nudity and gender issues. This show has both in spades. (whoop! whoop!)

Nekkid David Tennant running amuck *and* Peter O'Toole telling wicked tales. Now that's entertainment!

P.S. Please don't call the Rancho Sunday night. I anticpate the phone service will be out. . .
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Porn, porn, porn!