Sunday, September 6, 2009

One Word at a Time

I've been trying to think of what to say lately and nothing really seems to do the trick in my mind. You see, there's this awkwardness here, like an impervious silence in a full room. Of course, I can't wait for you to say something. It just doesn't work that way. Besides, you don't even know what's happened.

Life is full of decisions: how we decide to react to circumstances both within and outside of our control, what we decide to take ownership of... these decisions define us. The choices we make become who we are.

Instead of taking responsibility for his shortcomings, one of the individuals that lost his job earlier this summer decided to place the blame elsewhere. Apparently that means that taking my pictures off my blog and posting them to various places on the web with defaming comments is justified. I won't get into what was said, but it was enough for me to open up a case with the local police department. That in itself says something. I'm not one to be bothered by run-of-the-mill slander attacks, but this was above and beyond what might be considered within reason.

Where does it go from here? I'm not sure. They've assigned a detective to the case but I haven't heard anything yet. They said it could take a while to subpoena the websites where the content was uploaded. The process isn't fun, that's for sure.

In other news, I burned the skin off my right ankle this weekend. Whew! I'll have to post a picture, it's a bit gruesome. No worries though, I can still walk around just fine - it's a bit uncomfortable, but I'll manage. When I lit the pile, it went up with such force that some of the splashed gasoline was propelled from the flame and caught the nearby grass. My foot, I'm afraid, was also a victim of the explosion.

It was weird, though. It wasn't like you might imagine. There were no fireworks or grand plumes of flame.

I lit the lighter wand and there was a resounding BOOM and WHOOOSH as the vapors caught. I guess I was somewhat prepared for it because I instantly closed my eyes. Good thing, too, since I'm missing half of my eyelashes. The next few seconds are a blur of stumbling backwards in the perpetual dance of trying to regain my balance. Of course, it usually ends up the same way despite your efforts with you landing hard on your backside. This time was no different and I lay on the grass for a moment focusing my thoughts to the pain in my burning legs to stave off the looming shock that threatened to wash over me as I struggled to catch the wind that had been knocked hard out of my lungs.

There were no thoughts of Stop, Drop, and roll. I'd done well enough to get back away from the flames and other than the burning sensation on my legs, there was no reason to believe that I was on fire. I am not usually a shorts wearing kind of guy, but had I been wearing pants that night I would most assuredly caught flame. Instead, I stood up and walked over to a patch of grass that had been struck with flaming petrol and stomped it out.

It wasn't until after my wife walked out and admired the fire and the thought of sitting outside with me watching the dancing flames that I took the time to survey the damage. My leg hair was burnt off to the follicles, my skin pink from the burn. It hurt when I walked or moved and my shoe seemed to agitate a burnt spot on my ankle. It wasn't until I walked inside and got a good look in the light that I noticed that the top layer of skin had apparently melted off.

Luckily, the bottom layer wasn't as bad as it could have been. I was quite fortunate to get away with such minor injuries. Next time I think I'll toss a lit object into the fire from a safer distance, rather than attempting to light it so close. Lesson learned. :)


Jim Murdoch said...

I'm not sure how I would react if someone did something like that to me. My gut reaction would be to close up shop and go and do something more interesting instead. I'm not saying that's the right reaction but it would be just the excuse I need to stop this. Because it is hard work. What you have to assess is simple maths: what is the ratio between effort and return. When your blog is causing you more grief than anything else then close up shop. Start a new one if that's how you feel. Learn from the mistakes of the old one. Utilise a pseudonym for a while till your enemy gets bored and after a couple of years you can come out of hiding. Or go and play on a site like Zoetrope for a while where you can get your work critiqued more readily. There are always options.

Unknown said...

Yeah, Jim, I can't say I didn't think along the same lines when it happened. I guess I didn't just throw in the towel because I wanted it to be on my own terms. My plan is to eventually move away from HuntingtheMuse and start anew, but I wanted it to be on my timing, not this other person's.

I've got your books. They just arrived in the post. I've started reading the first one and I like what I've read so far.

Laura Brown said...

Glad you are ok after being on fire. I guess you've survived one of the four elements now. Just don't think you need to rush into testing the other 3.

As far as I know I haven't had photos stolen. Mine are on Flickr and I left them up as free to use since, in reality, you can't stop anyone from swiping what they want. I used to make a lot of ASCII Art and had one of my favourites posted to the ASCII Art group by some girl claiming it was her own work. Everyone knew she was stealing it cause I had posted it myself when I had created it, just a week before. I think some people are just desperate to be something, whether it's creative, clever or etc. They just don't want to go through the work of getting there. Shortcuts only work on road trips.

Hope you keep blogging. Don't feel you are talking to an empty room or that you have been quiet too long to get back into it.