road trip: day one overview

we stayed up late saturday night hanging out over at jack and sue’s, so we slept a bit late. so we didn’t take off until about 10am. i had to go by work, then we went to eat before hitting the road. le peep in the village (near where i work) had what appeared to be a long wait, so we went to the house of pies on kirby. there weren’t that many people waiting, but the cooks were putting food up way faster than the wait staff were taking it to the tables…there were plates on top of plates and the manager was kind of freaking out. so they didn’t seat people for awhile. we eventually got seated and had a good send-off meal.
then we hit the road, where the first thing i did was go to far up 59…maybe that’s not a good start. 🙂 we ended up going down 90 until just after nome, then taking 365 down to port arthur. once we got on 365 we started to see a lot of fallen, broken trees and lots of twisted pieces of sheet metal roofing and other stuff sat out by the road. people were also burning a lot of trash and wood they’d cut up from fallen trees. port arthur still had a lot of visible effects from the hurricane (torn up buildings, non-functional traffic lights, etc.). not having a good map of port arthur, we made a couple of big loops through various parts of town until we finally found 82. we were thinking we’d go along 82 if it was open, since it runs along the louisiana coastline. (here’s where mithras can opine that it’s so i could mock the hurricane victims.) 82 was open until you hit the bridge at the border, where there were police or gov’t people or something, and it was only open to local traffic. so we had to turn around and go back around up to i-10. we went over a couple of huge bridges, and from up there you could see a lot of blue tarps on roofs.
it was already dusk by the time we were going through bridge city, so we decided to stop in lake charles. we weren’t sure what the helmet laws are in louisiana so i was planning to stop at the welcome center (where we could get a new state pic as well)…but the entrance and exit were barracaded. we then made it lake charles…where all the hotels were booked. (rita plus katrina.) when i asked how far we’d have to go to find a room, two people said probably 100 miles east or west. i was worried we were going to have to find a manger to sleep in, and i don’t think my brother or i had plans to miraculously deliver a halloween baby. fortunately, after i explained our dilemma they let us stay at a best western if i signed a paper saying i would only stay for one day.
then we went to find a local place to eat. (why eat at chains when you’re on a trip?) it was around 8:00pm or so, and pretty much everything was closed. it looks like the town is still disoriented from rita. we eventually found a place around 9pm called deangelo’s. it’s a chain, but they only have about 8 places, mostly in louisiana. it was pretty good.
i’m now at the best western, where they provide free internet access. but no shampoo, evidently. oh well. we did have a good breakfast provided by the restaurant, and got to talk for awhile to a manager about the status of things in lake charles. some things open, some not. lots of trash still waiting to get picked up.
today we should make it across all of louisiana hopefully. we didn’t cover too much distance yesterday.

road trip

my brother is coming down this evening. tomorrow we leave on a week long road trip. the general purpose of which is to head to montgomery, alabama and seek out hank williams’ grave. i’m not sure what else we’ll be doing, but it’ll be nice to get out on the road and get away from things.
in preparation, i went and took care of the 16k maintenance on my bike. i also got new front and rear tires. my front tire was pretty worn, but my rear tire was actually showing radial cords. yikes! i stopped riding it after i realized that, so it sat for about a week before i could get it to a shop. i also went and picked up my new motorcycle plate and put it on my bike (image). it’s one of the “native Texan” plates, the picture being the alamo and san jacinto monument with a Texas flag background. and for riding in cooler weather, i picked up a polyester face/neck mask and a black knit skull cap with flames on it (heh…that’s funny). and today i picked up some halloween gloves that have skeleton hands. that way i can look like ghost rider. 😉 hopefully we’ll have a good time on the trip.

failure all around me

when tamara and i moved into our house, they were building a brand new albertson’s just a couple of blocks away. it was open 24 hours. it was great. then they stopped being open 24 hours. but it was still a good store. then albertson’s shut down a bunch of stores, including the one near here. so the skanky kroger that’d been across the street moved in. it wasn’t as good, but it was okay. they were open 24 hours at least. then they stopped that. a couple of weeks ago they put caution tape up around their gas pumps. “odd,” i thought, “i don’t remember a new hurricane scare and gas shortage.” then a few days later i went to buy some groceries…and the store itself closed. now there’s a sign on it saying a food town is moving in. a food town! bleh.
another thing is when we moved into the house we didn’t realize there was a landfill right across the major street from us. “oh great,” i thought, “that’ll be a benefit when we sell.” after a couple of years i guess they filled it up, because soon there was an incredibly hilly something taking shape. it turned out to be a golf course. what luck! but then after a couple of years the golf course closed. now it’s just sitting there as far as i know. maybe they’ll turn it into a motocross course. or a depository for radioactive material.
finally, when we moved in, we realized there was a “dead end” sign in our front yard. i used to think it was funny, seeing as i like to joke about failure and such. now i just think i was being laughed *at* by the gods, not *with*.

the glitter comes back to haunt you

that’s a line from an old joy electric song, and appropriate over these last couple of years…
tamara loved (loves?) shiny, glittery things. it was such a cute personality quirk. i could pretty much be assured that she would like anything i bought her that fell into that category. it was one of a number of unique traits i really loved about her. the fact is, she was a very unique individual, and i think we had a lot of things in common that it will be very rare to find in another person. there was so much possibility between us.
unfortunately, she appeared to self-destruct and allowed herself to get involved in an affair. as much as i would like to believe alistair took advantage of her frail mental state by feeding her lines to bed her (as he knew very well she was married, but obviously didn’t care enough…if he cared at all…as a person, much less a believer), i know she had plenty of times where she made her own choices.
i put up with a lot of things during this time because i believed we were partners. i was stumbling forward in a state of shock most of the time tamara was making her new lifestyle choices. i couldn’t believe she was the same person i’d met, fallen in love with, and married. but she was. and even though she seemed to momentarily reappear and ask to seek reconciliation with an acknowledgement of the wrong and harm she’d committed, it wasn’t long before she was gone again, replaced by a person who was looking for self-satisfaction and pleasure in whatever means presented itself most immediately. it was this new person who chose to take half of everything, even while she maintained with mutual friends that she was fully intending to honour the agreement we’d made. blatent lies, but it didn’t stop her. unfortunately, the “legal” system has been blindfolded to truth and fairness, and she was able to walk away with what everyone who has any knowledge of the situation knows is not fair.
am i bitter? yes. am i hurt? hell, yes. would anyone dare deny me my pain? if i forget about all of this and let it go, it’ll be because i’ve moved on to something else — not because i’ve found any justification for her actions, or alistair’s behaviour, or the legal system’s decisions. because there is nothing just or right in any of that. do i want to move on? yes. i would love to find a new, positive direction in my life as far as a relationship goes. the problem is, i’ve not permanently moved on yet. and what i had was pretty good, overall. until the complications in our lives piled up too high and we had problems dealing with the issues, and then she betrayed my trust and turned and walked away from me. (and don’t think the irony that isaac was the name given to the long-time-coming but promised child of abraham and sarah is lost on me, given what we were going through and who she had the affair with.)
after one of the last counseling sessions, she read me a letter she had written to me, detailing a possible plan for us staying together. a plan that involved us moving to one of the coasts and starting a new life, seemingly cutting all ties and forgetting everything up to that moment. she even had plans of what we could do. it was so horribly difficult for me to not agree to it, because i wanted so much for our marriage to be good again, for our life to be good again…but i knew it wouldn’t actually solve the crisis we were in. i knew it wouldn’t fix things for long. it also didn’t really seem about our marriage, but about tamara doing what she needed to do for her to be happy. it wasn’t a plan with consideration for me, for us, just everything she would like to do herself. looking back now, it’s probably…i don’t know. i just know i couldn’t agree, and it hurt like hell.
during this conversation outside the counselor’s building she cried, and she gave me that sad expression i’d seen so many time before, clasped her arms together in front of her and moved into me, and i wrapped my arms around her and held her tight…for the last time. and even though she’d betrayed me and was continually inflicting more pain, i just kept wishing i wouldn’t have to let go and everything could be better.
i have no false notions any more. but that doesn’t keep me from continuing to feel the pain from the hole inside of me where my partner, my lover, my best friend, tore herself loose and left me behind. i know i need to move on, but a good portion of my life disappeared when she chose to give up on our life together.
i pray G-d can see His way to provide me with peace and fulfillment in this area of my life, both in dealing with my broken past and with looking with hope into the future.

happy 2nd affair anniversary to me [edited]

note: i have edited this entry because i was contacted by tamara via a mutual friend and it appears some of the things i posted were not appreciated. while i think i am justified in putting the truth of the situation in my blog if it affected me on a personal level, i realize some of it may have come across as overly vindictive or mean-spirited. i think my actions are completely understandable given what was done to me; however, while i believe i should be able to state the truth of events, i also don’t believe i should seem to be speaking purely out of anger or for revenge. revealing truths after i’ve been suffering with them for so long was good, but some of the events that factored into my mistreatment don’t need me to parade them around. (and there’s plenty of stuff i’ve still never posted.) hopefully truth will eventually conquer deceit and lies. that said, areas edited below by me will be denoted by italics and square brackets.


[(i know this is […long…])
on the two year anniversary of tamara tabo (my ex-wife) telling me she was having an affair with alistair isaac, i’ve decided i’ll share some thoughts and experiences surrounding that…
i’ve been in alistair’s dad’s house.

Continue reading “happy 2nd affair anniversary to me [edited]”

failing social studies

i go out on a party, to look for a little fun
but i find a darkened corner, ’cause i still miss someone
–johnny cash
not that i’ve ever been much of a social butterfly, but d4mn do i get lonely now. tamara was my constant companion, and there was a lot of security in that. i’d pretty much forgetten what it used to be like, going places and feeling like i was completely alone all the time. now i find i’m all by myself with very few friends and even fewer social circles, and unfortunately i’m not much of a joiner (i’m sure that comes as a surprise to those of you who know me ;). i really would like to be able to get involved in some kind of xian circles, but there are a few problems: [1] i don’t really like church culture, [2] as earlier mentioned, i’m not much of a joiner, [3] i don’t take the initiative in social settings (which has always been true of me), and [4] i don’t know of any i’d be excited about getting involved with.
i’ve been going to houston first baptist with jack and sue, and it’s okay. they just recently started a sunday evening service, more “modern” and “hip” or whatever. but contemporary worship music is still worship music i don’t like, even if it’s got more drums and louder guitars and more energy. at least greg (the pastor) seems fairly intelligent and sometimes has some good stuff to say. sometimes i think i should try to get more involved somehow, and sometimes i think i should just give up and stop going.
still, i tend to think the problem isn’t so much church as it is me. i’m not sure what it is i need or think i need, but i’m not finding it. if i took the initiative to meet some people, who knows what might happen? but instead i just wait for something to happen, and rarely does it. which means i’ll go through the rest of my life jaded and lonely and wishing things were different, which is kind of stupid… but that’s me i guess.

potluck suicide

a week or two ago i got an email from a person i didn’t know. surprisingly, it wasn’t spam. it was a guy named john talking about a cassette-only album i’d lost years ago: potluck suicide by eric hann. it was an underground independently made alt christian tape with a quirky 80’s electronic feel and a dry ironic wit that beautifully punched home some things. anyway, john had been doing searches on eric and the album name and ran across some posts i’d made a couple of years back about my loss of this “irreplaceable” cassette (as i had put it). so he decided to email the address (another good reason to keep the same email address, kids) and let me know it in fact was replaceable…because he had digitized it! he then offered to burn me a cd (after getting an okay from eric). so i’m now sitting here listening to some songs i’ve not heard for years. and from a cd, no less. that is freaking awesome! i thought i’d probably never hear this stuff again.

google/sun and ntfs

while at work today i heard about the new sun/google alliance. very interesting. i think sun has more to gain, but google getting better access to java and star office could be good for them too. plus i’d think the very act of the announced alliance would annoy microsoft. google certainly is doing a lot of stuff…it’ll be interesting to see what they end up doing over the next few years.
in unrelated news, i’ve spent the last four and a half hours trying to get drivers installed on my old pc so i can have audio and network. this so i can get the machine to the point where i can go through the randomized files found on my borked ntfs hard drive and see if i can salvage anything from when the system crashed and burned however long ago it was. (year and half?) it’s exciting living on the edge by not doing backups, but trying to salvage stuff sucks.

cigars, comics, and inner peace

well, now i went and did it. i bought an entry-level humidor. which of course means i’ve been out buying more “snobbish” (i.e., not supermarket-level) cigars, and i’m actually planning on trying to keep them in good shape instead of letting them dry out. don’t worry too much about me though, i’ve still got some swishers around here somewhere.
smoking a cigar every now and then is an unnecessary but enjoyable act. it’s not to get a buzz or anything. in fact, i pretty much work to avoid that. i like the way cigars smell (i like pipes even better, but i’m too impatient to put up with the ongoing work that’s involved in smoking a pipe…maybe someday), and sitting and smoking a cigar tends to be a contemplative time for me (especially if i’m outside).
i also picked up some comic books. of course i bought indie and “weird” comics. i’ve got a reputation to keep up, you know! people who buy comics are just dorks if they don’t buy the right ones. it’s sort of like walking through a reputation landmine as an initiation — not much room for error, but if you succeed then the cool kids accept you. (the fun part of this paragraph will be seeing who thinks which parts are sarcastic.)
the last few times i’ve bought comics, i’ve bought several from oni press. i was pretty impressed with last exit before toll and one plus one (both written by neal shaffer, both on oni). today one of my purchases was no dead time (oni). not incredible, but enjoyable and causes thought and/or emotion. it’s always nice to run across something that does that. oni also re-released madman: the oddity odyssey, which is written and drawn by mike allred and is awesome. (but i already have the old release, and i tend to love allred’s stuff.) and this isn’t on oni (i read it maybe a year ago) but blankets (written and drawn by craig thompson) was really good.
thursday night was the first time in awhile i’d really felt a good amount of self-pity about my current life status. oh well, it comes and goes. it only hurts when i think about it. 🙂 while i personally think i have the right to be having a hard time dealing with things, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t suck, and i would like it if i could pull things together better and move forward in a positive direction with my life. i could go on and on about this subject, but i’ll refrain for now.
so until a cool-looking girl with high moral standards and a belief in G-d comes knocking at my door and makes me feel all squishy inside, i’ve got my cigars and comic books to keep me company. and mithras to keep me in line. (see the “rita swag” comments)