Sprinklers in the Rain Blog

Where [Not] To Park A Car

After a long day of work, the last thing I want to do is… well. Pretty much anything.

Me After Work

But from time to time, doing things is unavoidable. Bank. Grocery store. Dishes. Laundry. I congratulate myself on the rare occasion that I make it happen after work – even small things.

That’s what I did this afternoon, despite my bed and a nap beckoning me home. I drove that extra mile, got myself out of the car, and managed to turn myself on for another fifteen minutes to do something. When I left, I felt so accomplished that I nearly went out for something to eat.

Then I remembered my bed, and a nap. And threw that idea out the window.

My car sputtered when I started it, but eventually idled as normal. This is not unusual behavior. My car has been doing this for a year now, and I’ve chosen to ignore it. When it’s time to have that looked at, the car will let me know. Right?

Well. Today was that day.


Review: Heart-Shaped Box, by Joe Hill

Heart-Shaped Box, by Joe Hill

Official Synopsis

Judas Coyne is a collector of the macabre: a cookbook for cannibals…a used hangman’s noose…a snuff film. An aging death-metal rock god, his taste for the unnatural is as widely known to his legions of fans as the notorious excesses of his youth. But nothing he possesses is as unlikely or as dreadful as his latest discovery, an item for sale on the Internet, a thing so terribly strange, Jude can’t help but reach for his wallet.

I will “sell” my stepfather’s ghost to the highest bidder…

For a thousand dollars, Jude will become the proud owner of a dead man’s suit, said to be haunted by a restless spirit. He isn’t afraid. He has spent a lifetime coping with ghosts–of an abusive father, of the lovers he callously abandoned, of the band-mates he betrayed. What’s one more?

But what UPS delivers to his door in a black heart-shaped box is no imaginary or metaphorical ghost, no benign conversation piece. It’s the real thing.

And suddenly the suit’s previous owner is everywhere: behind the bedroom door…seated in Jude’s restored vintage Mustang…standing outside his window…staring out from his widescreen TV. Waiting–with a gleaming razor blade on a chain dangling from one bony hand…


My Kindle library has grown out of control. I sweep up Daily Deals and free offers faster than I can read anything. At this point, I hardly recognize anything on my Kindle. But I always have something to read, and sometimes it’s fun to go into a book completely blind.

So it was that Heart-Shaped Box completely caught me by surprise. I knew that it’s written by Stephen King’s son, and I had a vague awareness that the plot revolved around buying a ghost from eBay. Having seen the trailers for the whimsical (if dark) Horns, based on another book by Joe Hill, I suppose I was expecting something similar. I don’t know. Man buys ghost on-line and they become unexpected friends, having many ghoulish adventures? Fun, dark, whimsy.

My partner was away for the week when I started reading this, so I had our place to myself. We were in the middle of a two-day rain, and the neighbors had just moved out so I felt particularly alone. These were, perhaps, the worst fucking circumstances to start reading this book.


LiveJournal, ICQ, Forums & Fan Sites: What Happened to Our Internet?

The other night, a friend and I took a brave trip down memory lane into our first years with LiveJournal. What we found was, unsurprisingly, horrifying. Eleven years ago, we were completely different people. We over-shared, we over-emoted, and felt no fear in doing so.

But so did everyone else. The internet was a very different place, back then.

LiveJournal in 2001

Our generation had the unique position of growing up with the internet. As we first began to find our voices, define ourselves and finally venture out into the world, so too was the internet still finding its legs. Not many people even knew what to do with the internet, beyond knowing that they should have an e-mail address (so you can forward chain mail). We ran no risk of running into our parents on social networking sites. There was no worry of your employers seeing the post about your bad day at work. It was rare to even find your friends on-line. The internet was a refuge from all these things.


A Rare Look Inside the Heart of Islamic State

Whenever you have an hour to kill, you should watch this documentary. How they managed to get a reporter this ingrained with ISIL for three weeks without losing a head is a wonder to me, but I’m grateful for their bravery.

It’s so fascinating to see things from their perspective, however twisted it may be, and a startling reminder of how dangerous religion can be.


The Sims 4: Loads of Potential, Little to Chew On

My Sims addiction began with an early advertisement for the original game on the back of Sim City 3000. “You build their neighborhood. You run their lives!” There were pictures of a couple kissing near a hot tub, a family’s kitchen on fire, a man playing pool, and someone about to eat a cheeseburger. I gawked at this for about two weeks. I get to control all this?! I can make people eat cheeseburgers and make out?

It was the most exciting thing I’d ever seen in my life.

Literally me in the year 2000

Literally me in the year 2000

Who knew that dictating when your Mary Sue eats, sleeps, and poops could be so much fucking fun?