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December 20th, 2010

Wharrgarbl!

Wharrgarbl!

Hmm. Let me give that some context.

Back in October or November sometime, the heater fan on New Bruce started being wonky. It was not a problem at the time, because the weather was warm enough that we rarely needed it, but we knew that it would need to be taken care of before the weather got icky. Unfortunately, every time we tried to deal with it, something would jump up in our faces, whether it was the semi-regular crisis state of my parents, or long overland trips, or even just us being too pooped from the the semi-regular crisis state of my parents and long overland trips to cope.

We did try to get it repaired — on a day when we were working from home we took it to Herndon automotive, left it with them all day, and walked home. When all was said and done, they charged us $150 in labor and it still wasn't fixed. -.-

So finally, last week, we managed to rent ourselves that crappy lil' Prius and take New Bruce back to CarMax, so the repairs would be done under warranty. They kept the car for two days waiting for a new heater motor (thus leaving us to rent the Prius for an extra day and negating any savings from the warranty), but when they gave it back to us, joy of joys the heater fan worked!

Unfortunately, the car's console (including the heater controls, the radio, and the GPS) did not. Oh it would come on sometimes ... but only sometimes. We drove around like that all weekend. But only because CarMax's service department was closed anyway and there wasn't anything we could do about it.

Finally, this morning after a lot of calling and finagling, we've got it arranged that they'll fix it on Wednesday (or at least, we hope they'll fix it), requiring us to drop it off Tuesday night. So this time we're renting another SUV at a weekly rate (which ends up still being cheaper than the Prius was, go fig) starting tomorrow night, and if New Bruce does get properly fixed on Wednesday, then maybe we'll try to get him into a body shop to fix all those scuffs from the #&%** pillars in the parking deck here at work while we're at it.

None of this even begins to address the drama of Trying to Get laurie_robey's Christmas Present Delivered, which has been another round-and-round of phone calls with FedEx.

Oy! I don't get how people who can gracefully and effortlessly cope with all this administrative crap handle it. My head has been exploding all morning and is threatening to do so for the rest of the afternoon.

-The Gneech

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Random Artsy Thoughts

With gaming done for 2010 and conventions bearing down on me (including, have I mentioned, Confuzzled, nudge-nudge wink-wink?), it's time to start doing some heavy duty thinking about art (as opposed to just cranking out comics, which is what I was doing before November went all pear-shaped).

Honestly, I can't say I'm happy with the current state of furry art; the always-tenuous community seems to fragmenting more than ever, and certainly the fun-and-happy-but-not-X-rated toony art that I prefer has receded further into the background. I could expound all sorts of theories about why, but without any real info to go on they'd amount to little more than "Those ding-dang furries keep liking the wrong stuff!" ... which isn't useful.

I am particularly disappointed with the current situation at ArtSpots, which recently had a makeover I didn't care for and now seems to be having a traumatic identity crisis, at least going by its forums. Again, I could expound all sorts of theories, but I don't have any real useful thoughts as to what to do about it — at least not that are likely to be embraced by the folks in charge over there. They have a vision and they're trying to pursue it, which I can't fault them for, even if I think there are some fundamental flaws in that vision.

I won't rant about FurAffinity; I've done that enough. I will say that for all the wrong ways it rubs me, it is where the users are, and what good is a website without users? But it also has so much friggin' baggage. I don't feel comfortable just sending anybody over to look at my FA page, for fear of what they might click on while they're there and then associate with me. What I want, what I've always wanted, was a place to share my art with like-minded folks in a community atmosphere, that I didn't mind also sharing with mixed company.

Feh. It's frustrating. I'm not prepared to throw my own hat in the ring with yet another furry art site attempt, but the idea is tempting. I can't tell if a worst-case scenario would be chirping crickets, or having to spend all of my free time attempting to wrangle a bunch of neurotic and demanding furries instead of actually being able to enjoy the website. I'm also not sure that if you take out all the pr0n and refrigerator art, furry actually has enough going for it to sustain itself.

-The Gneech

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