Holiday deadlines, and that means everything gets bumped up a day. Duty calls, with the usual stirring trumpets and unfurled flags. Huzzah. But before I sign off –


No, won’t.

I have my head in a blender tonight, and it’s probably just as well I say nothing. I took some solace in editing the family movie, which contains all sorts of heartstring-yanking moments. Last day of school. Last day of playroom. Last day of swim class! Get out the fargin’ hankies, son. It’s bad enough to cry at movies, but to cry at your own? Embarrassing. And it has nothing to do with the brilliance of my cinematography; it’s just the fatally cute combination of slo-mo and acoustic guitar that unmans me. For three years I’ve managed to get the “end of school” shot with Gnat walking away ito sunlight, and if you edit out the ambient noise, airplane racket, screechy kids, and boost the Pat Metheny, you get boo-hoo moments so powerful they could be used in a heartwarming local TV news segment. Yes, that heartwarming. The maximum amount of ventricle-enflaming Federal regs permit. My hands slip off the keyboard, because they are soaked with tears. Of joy! And regret.

What made this year’s effort even more unbearably emotional than usual was the dreaded Photo Montage, complete with pan-and-zoom effects for 37% more poignancy. I do it in the hopes that one day she’ll watch this an adult and realize that daddy loved her so much he took extra time to lock the audio clip to the playhead so it faded out just at the right moment, regardless of how much he edited out of the overlong swingset segment.

And if she doesn’t realize that right away, well, I’m sure iDVD 6.0 will allow me to add commentary tracks, so I can remind everyone.

Re: the Screedblog, and Diner podcasts. I need RSS feeds. Obviously. I have no idea how to do them. It’s one of those areas where I’ve run smack up against the limits of my knowledge, and I have no idea how to construct the code that lets me add a feed. (Bleg: fence@startribune.com. Assume the Screedblog feed would be lileks.com/screedblog/screed.xml, and the Diner lileks.com/diner05/podcasts/podcasts.xml. Or something like that. I don’t know. I suck.) Since I want to do regular Diner podcasts – little merry thrice-a-week updates with news from other eras – I want to get into Apple’s list. Amateurish as the Diner may be, it’s still a damn sight better that some of the drivel I’ve been sampling in the podcast section of iTunes; criminey, that’s drecktacular. Some people seem to think that just because they’re not commercial radio, they have nothing to learn from commercial radio – believe me, there’s much to be learned from having commercial breaks breathing down your neck all the time, and realizing that people can, and will, change the channel at the slightest provocation.

But life is change, isn’t it? So if I said that all of a sudden I’m looking at the end of the two most important things I do, you’d say “Great! New opportunities!” and I’d agree. But right now, I don’t know what the hell to say.

Cryptic enough? Sorry. I have the strong suspicion that 2005 in retrospect will look like a pivotal year. The Time of Great Pivoting.

Workman update: the Dining room is now nude; the wallpaper is gone, and the room looks six times bigger. It’s amazing what removal of dark green busy wallpaper will do, eh? It’s really quite remarkable how these things work; now I walk through the dining room, and it’s mine. It wasn’t before. It was theirs. It was hers. But now for the first time the room feels like it’s ours, and it makes me realize how long the room has felt like a ceremonial chamber where I mumbled a litany to a god I secretly despised. I used to praise the wallpaper, and rightly so; it was, after all, a reproduction of a 1915 William Morris pattern, down on your knees, forehead to the FLOOR in WORSHIP, PEONS. <abfab Eddy voice> WILLIAM MORRIS, DAHLING. </abfab Eddy voice> But it was someone else’s choice, not mine. It’s like having a gorgeous bride in an arranged marriage. Oh, so she fell for you why? Because of the dead smothering hand of tradition. Oh.

Removing the old light in the dining room, they found the original 1915 wallpaper where the fixture met the ceiling.

It was beige. And nothing more.

Perm link: here.

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