February 5, 2008

This blog has moved to my own web space. This is part of a re-organization of all of my online ‘projects.’ China’s blog will be moving (again) soon as well.

The new blog is here: http://www.brandimills.com/blog/ 


Happy Birthday

January 19, 2008

Today is the birthday of a friend of mine. At one point in my life, for many years, he was my best friend. I heard from him 3 years ago when he e-mailed me to tell me that his mother had died. I haven’t heard from him since.

I do hope that he’s all right and in the off chance that he should come across this I would like to wish him a happy birthday. So…happy birthday, Robert. I miss you.


Just to prove how much of a nerd I am…

January 17, 2008

adams.jpgWe don’t have cable – haven’t since we moved from Florida. Except for Turner Classic Movies, we haven’t really missed it much, either. I mean, sure, we sometimes wish we had The SciFi channel to watch “Battlestar Galactica” and BBC America to watch “Doctor Who” and “Torchwood,” but if we really want to see something we’ll get it on DVD. And believe me, it’s so much better watching TV without the commercials – as long as everyone’s getting their fair share from the sale of DVDs (writers, directors, etc. – hint, hint you greedy producers.)

Anyways, I just found myself wishing we had cable so that we could get HBO. Why, you ask, would I want that? Is there some hip, new, edgy series about to premiere?

Nope – a mini-series about John Adams.

A few years ago I saw 1776 (yes, the musical – which is a damn fine movie, no matter what you think, Doug). It got me interested in John Adams. In all of my history classes (and I minored in college) I don’t remember hearing about John Adams – just the usual suspects – Jefferson, Washington, etc. etc. From what I gathered from 1776, Adams seemed to be pretty damn important in that whole Independence thingy.

So, I went out and got David McCoullough’s book (pulitzer prize winning, even) and I loved it. Adams became one of my heroes, despite the repugnant Sedition Act. As an added consequence, Thomas Jefferson was roughly pushed off his pedestal and while I still admire Benjamin Franklin, I don’t think he was as wonderful as he’s usually portrayed.

But then again, I’ve always been rather prudish about how one conducts themselves in public and especially in their work. I’m one of ‘those’ that gets annoyed when someone brings their kid/spouse/boyfriend/girlfriend/etc. to work.

But I digress. No doubt this mini-series will make it to DVD and I’ll be at least renting it. I’m glad they didn’t cast some stud to play Adams as Hollywood usually does. Paul Giametti is a fine actor and I’m sure he’ll do great in the part. Let’s just hope Laura Linney, who is playing Abigail Adams, is just as good.


Wow…this is a first

January 13, 2008

For the first time that I can remember, I took an online quiz and it gave me the results I expected.

Over here is a quiz that will match you up with the appropriate presidential candidate. Of course it’s a short quiz and it’s multiple choice so it isn’t perfect, but I think the list it gave me is pretty much right on the money, with one exception.

The candidate I most agree with: Dennis Kucinich with Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama in second and third place. John Edwards is lower than I think he should be (6th) but like I said, it’s not an extensive quiz.

The person who was dead last on my list? Mike Huckabee – and that’s where I think he should be. Living in Arkansas while he was the Reverend Governor was bad enough. I do not want to suffer his presidency.


Let’s Have a Great 2008!

December 29, 2007

926629_2008_with_balloons_2.jpgAnother year is starting and I can only hope that things start getting better.

Not that things have been terrible, but they have been far from great or even good. They have been ‘okay.’

We started 2007 with both my husband, Chris, and my cat, Audrey, being diagnosed with cancer. Both of them had surgery to remove the tumor. Chris’s surgery was successful. Audrey’s was not.

After Chris had his surgery he had a very painful and long recovery period. In fact, his incision still hurts to this day.

During all of this, the Audrey’s tumors began to reappear, even worse than before. We had decided not to put her through surgery again and on June 28th we had to put her to sleep. She had been my pet for 15 years – almost half of my life – and I still cry if I think about her too much (like right now, for instance.)


Then we found out that Chris has severe sleep apnea – so severe that his bi-pap machine has been designated a ‘life support system.’ The diagnosis was actually a good thing as getting the machine has helped take care of a few problems such as his high blood pressure and constant sleepiness. However, it’s just one more thing we have to deal with and will have to deal with for the rest of our lives.

853448_piggy_bank_3.jpgMoney has been even tighter because of all of the new bills and we didn’t have enough before. Chris is in even worse shape now due to the surgery, the sciatica he developed while recovering from the surgery and his ever-mystifying ‘IBS’ problems – which is not IBS but the doctors can not identify what it actually is. Therefore, a regular day job is just not feasible for him.

927052_usb_cable.jpgOn the plus side, I am still in the IT department at my workplace after a year. I still feel rather ignorant but no one has suggested kicking me out of the department (to my knowledge, anyways.) Our medical insurance is pretty good and I did just get a raise.

As for 2008, I’ll still be at my job and Chris has several things being published. A few comic book series, a couple of graphic novels and probably more prose anthologies.

I’m hoping to finish one of the two of my novels that are almost done and submit them for publication. If they’re not ‘bought’ I’ll publish them myself and see if I can sell them on my own.

renee-oconnor-01.jpgChris and I are both determined to get in better shape this year meaning that we have to both excercise and eat better. We’re turning our game room into a mini-gym with an excercise bike and a Nordic Track. I would say I hope we stick with it, but I’m not going to. I’m going to say that we are going to stick with it, period. I may never look like Renee O’Connor over there to your left, but I’d like to get as close as possible.

chinafall.jpgzoepeek.jpgWe have already made some changes in the pet’s diets. We adopted a new kitty in August – Zoe. Both she and China (the dog) have been put on higher quality foods and the difference in China has been very evident. She’s trimmed down to her perfect weight, she has more energy and she seems to be in better spirits overall. All of you out there who think ‘pet food is pet food’ take it from me – pet food is just like human food – some of it is great but most of it is crap. For more information on pet food, go HERE.

I decided to make resolutions this year. I usually do but I never really take it seriously. After the past few years I’ve decided to change that and try to make some major changes in our lives. I don’t expect it to be an overnight success but something has to change. I’m tired of being tired and the depression is starting to really sink in. So, here they are:

  • Get in Shape
  • Help Chris get in shape
  • Take better care of our car
  • Eat better
  • Be less wasteful – compost everything possible, recycle, etc.
  • Work on getting out of debt
  • Stick to a budget
  • Help Chris stick to the budget
  • Finish at least one novel and submit it for publication
  • Update my websites on a more regular basis, including my fan site, personal site, and pet blog
  • Help Chris keep his websites up to date
  • Re-join the community band and stick with it
  • Practice my clarinet at least twice a week
  • Watch less television
  • Make a cleaning schedule and stick to it so that I’m not spending all weekend cleaning the house
  • Go to bed at 10:00 every work night
  • Be a better gardener – weeds, bugs, pruning, etc.
  • Finish household projects such as painting the garage trim, adding more smoke detectors, etc.

So, you think that’s enough? I might have time to take a breath on Saturdays at 8:30 a.m. Hee hee hee.

And hey, even if 2008 isn’t as great as I would like it to be, at least Bush will be (should be) leaving office and taking Cheney with him. Rock on!


The name you’re looking for is Link Hogthrob

November 21, 2007


Ozy and Millie is a great daily strip. I highly recommend it.


No surprise

September 23, 2007

Which Early 19th Century Literary Heroine Are You?

You are Jane Eyre, from Charlotte Bronte’s excellent book of the same name. Jane might not be pretty, but she is dedicated and determined to make her own way in the world. she is confident and smart, and doesn’t let the world get her down, even though it tries a lot.

5% of people had this result.

Taste the quiz


I think this speaks for itself

September 23, 2007



September 21, 2007

funnyface.jpgI know Audrey Hepburn is the star of the movie, but I am not happy with this cover for the new 50th Anniversary Edition DVD of Funny Face.

Audrey has not only a full body shot but a HUUUGE head shot, and there’s Fred Astaire, over in the corner, as if he’s just a minor plot point. Hell, he’s hardly recognizable.


I take it all back.

I just looked up the original poster art for this movie, from 1957. Fred didn’t fare any better in that artwork either. In fact, he did much worse.

funnyfacefred.jpg <– It’s not a particularly flattering picture, but Fred does appear in this poster.

He does not for the other two I found.funnyfacenofred1.jpgfunnyfacenofred2.jpg

Poor Kay Thompson, who is the second best thing in the movie, doesn’t appear in any of them. (I don’t think I have to tell you what I think is the best thing. 🙂 )
C’est la vie, I suppose. Audrey was ‘it’ in 1957. I still don’t get the appeal – she was a decent actress, but nothing all that special that I’ve seen. Maybe it was more about her personality than her acting prowess. I wasn’t around at the time and she’s one I’ve never taken time to research.

I guess it’s good that a DVD that’s getting this special treatment includes Astaire. I can’t be too angry with anything that ‘spreads Fred.’



September 6, 2007

I haven’t posted in a while. For the past month I haven’t been feeling very well. It’s something that happens every summer that my doctor hasn’t figured out yet. Unfortunately, it really tires me out. This year, it’s causing short-term memory problems too. Kind of forgot I had a blog, lol.

Over Labor Day weekend we went to Acadia National Park. Take my advice. Don’t go on a holiday weekend. While it probably wasn’t as busy as it is during the peak of the summer months, it was way too busy for my tastes. Everything I wanted to see, so did everyone else. No place to park. We went to the part of the island that was less populated, but there were still too many for me. I hope we can go back later in the fall so I can enjoy it because it was very pretty.

I’ll have pictures later.