On a Lighter Note…

June 3, 2011

Picture time!

F*ck You, I'm Batman....

Me and Mom in St. Augustine, FL

My mom randomly mentions a trip we took to Florida, and references it as if I should remember it. I of course do not, seeing as I was a wee 6 months or a little less old. And here is proof, that is me. No wonder I have no recollection!

Happy Me


 And here I am, about three years later. Unruly hair, a penchant for the color red in my wardrobe, off on an adventure. Wow, some things just don’t change.
While visiting my parents in Montana just last week, my project was to work on scanning some of the ba-zillions of slides my dad has taken and putting them into digital format. I managed to get through almost two photo albums with two days’ worth of work. The revelation for me was finding so many photos of us as a happy family, complete with smiles on our faces.
School photos and family photo albums give little hint of this side of our family life, as somehow our parents always chose to print out the pictures of us looking extremely serious. Or unhappy, the famous photo my mom loved of me right after I had been crying my heart out. Sure, the lighting was great, but that as a lasting image of my childhood? No wonder I so easily think I have been depressed my entire life!
But look at this: Happy! Happy me! There was once a happy childhood back in my misty past….
And here’s the proof.

Guilty Pleasures

June 3, 2011

I am not a reality show fan. I have friends who are. And are addicted. But today….

I stumbled across my ex-boyfriend in a reality show. It aired its first episode just this Tuesday, and he and his girlfriend were in that premiere episode.

I wasn’t looking for it, honest, even after he mentioned in a voicemail after I last saw him that they had recently been in a reality show. I thought, oh, okay, whatever. They both want to be actors, here’s their shot. Wonder if it will get aired. I mean, whatever happened to the reality show Dr. Drew was doing with random couples taking a road trip together? Or maybe that was someone else’s show, but I thought road trip, I’ll audition. Never heard of it again.

So what to my wondering eyes should I see when looking through Hulu, to see what episodes of favorite shows I missed while on vacation, but a snippet that clearly showed the ex’s girlfriend. Uh-oh. I think I found it. Like I said, wasn’t trying.

I took a deep breath before clicking play. My heart was pounding. Did I want to see this? He had mentioned there was therapy, and physical trainers and stuff like that involved. Would I be enlightened by watching this? Would it help me understand what went wrong in our 7+ year relationship? The one he said if he had any sense, he would marry me, because we obviously would never get bored with one another and things to talk about and do together? And really, enough about them, what I wanted to know, was would I come up as an issue in their relationship? The love of his life that got away? Because he always stays away from me when he’s with someone else, because they get so jealous of me. I can’t imagine what he says about me that causes that, but I miss one of my best friends not being in my life when he’s dating someone else. I know we can still be friends, but apparently he doesn’t.

I hit play. I watched. My heart continued to pound.

That picture in the background of their place, I remember when he got that. The plates they ate off, we went shopping for matching ones for me, and we too ate off them. The breakfasts they talk about preparing before consulting with the nutritionist are the ones he used to foist on me, and I would protest it was too much food, I wasn’t that hungry.

This is the girlfriend he started seeing while still seeing me. He claimed he stopped seeing me because I got too fat. At the start of the show, she is far heavier than I ever was, or ever have been.

Yeah. And then I wonder how much reality shows are scripted.

I won’t give away the grand finale, but I just noticed the date they wrote in the sand while at the beach. Hunh.

Because, about two weeks later, after not hearing from him for months, maybe even a full year, I got a phone call from a police officer at his request. I was at a party, with a date. Drinking. Enjoying myself with friends.

The police officer told me where they were, and requested I come pick him up, so he didn’t have to take him to the drunk tank. They couldn’t book him for drunk driving, as no one actually saw him driving, but the tires up on the curb, and the voluminous empty beer bottles in the vehicle and his polite but quite drunken demeanor were evidence enough. No keys in the ignition, something he knows well not to have when the police stop him. My showing up, date driving his vehicle as I knew I should not be driving at that point, meant the ex did not have to go to the drunk tank. They handed over his cell phone, keys, and ID to me, and explained since I had come so quickly and was obviously responsible, they were releasing him to me. Could we just move the car off the curb before we left?

After the police escorted him out of the back seat of the police car, I immediately asked him why he hadn’t called his girlfriend. He said she was working. And so? I thought.

I spoke some more with the police, hoping my own intoxication was not obvious. My anger covered most anything else, I think. Besides, I wasn’t doing anything illegal. I wasn’t driving. The cell phone in my hand started vibrating. By the time I was able to look at the screen, I could see it was his girlfriend.

Should I answer or not?

Hi Meg, it’s your boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend, rescuing him from the police again. How are you? Why didn’t he call you?

No, I decided, enough drama without creating some more. I got to our car, where he was now captive in the backseat of a two door coupe, and told him his girlfriend was trying to get ahold of him, and handed him his phone. We closed the door to leave him in privacy, and went to go move his car. There was cash strewn all over the seats, and I figured I didn’t want to be responsible for his car getting broken into for such an obvious temptation, so I gathered that up too. The car was a pig sty. I had never seen it that messy before, with food and wrappers and CDs and just stuff. Almost like he was living in his car.

He gave us directions, and we took him home, someplace he had never invited me to before, though I knew he lived somewhere in this area for a few years now. Five miles away from me, rather than the 50 I had been always driving to see him four years ago.

His place was a disaster. Now, you must understand, he and I are both slobs. We are clear on that. But one thing we had always been good about was keeping the common areas clean when sharing space with others. I asked where the dog was, since I knew they had adopted a dog, just as we had once when we had lived together. I had been wanting to meet the dog.

“Oh, Meg’s probably walking him.”

“I thought you said she was at work.”

“Uh, or maybe the roommate is out walking the dog.”


I walked straight into the kitchen, the very same one shown on the reality show, and immediately put his keys, cash and ID in the freezer. Unfortunately, the point of hiding them was kinda moot, since he followed directly on my footsteps into the kitchen.

The freezer? you ask.

Yes. It was someplace he always hid things when drunk. I figured when he woke up the next morning, it would be one of the first places he would look for them, in perfect drunk person logic. He used to go to parties and hide his keys in random places, so he wouldn’t drive drunk. Then call me to pick him up, hoping the keys were found the next day during clean up. They usually were.

But instead I got a text from him the next morning asking where his keys and ID were. Guess he wasn’t watching when I put them there after all.

So the question is, why call me? As he has had no contact with me for months, why would he even assume I was in town, even nearby?

I could have not answered the phone. When I answered and it wasn’t his voice, giving me directions to someplace completely random, I thought maybe it was a prank. Another reason to take the date with me, in case I was right and somehow walking into something dangerous.

But I did, and I was nearby, and I did rescue him, again.

And now that I have watched the reality show and seen the conclusion, I wonder all the more about the health of that relationship.

Because when you are in trouble, don’t you call the person you love and trust the most? The one you know you can count on? Isn’t that the person you want to spend the rest of your life with?


Geeky Love

April 26, 2011

Today, I walked into a store and bought something.

Didn’t put it on layaway, didn’t make a down, paid full price for something that was at a relatively cheap list price.

It was a netbook, similar to the one I have been issued through my tutoring, and need to return shortly, contract ending, thus why I am interested in replacing it. I have grown fond of having it.

And then, on an impulse, I bought something else. I had seen it in the store on a previous visit, but hadn’t been able to find the actual product on the shelf for me to buy. This time I asked, and was handed it, along with the offer of a 15% discount. Sure. Something bought on impulse, and given to me below list? Okay, that’s a clincher for a deal on an impulse. No second thoughts allowed there.

I bought a new keyboard.

I wanted one, because I want a ten key on the side. My laptop does not have a 10 key on the side. And since I am doing accounting while at the home computer, having a 10 key seems like a worthwhile investment, to help me save time and get work done quicker. And, the keyboard being wireless would be nice too, along with a more ergonomic friendly keypad in general. And then I saw this one.

Logistics is the brand, the manufacturer of my wireless mouse that I bought with my laptop. This keyboard is set up the same, you stick a USB stick into a port, it talks to the mouse or the keyboard, no wires, all is good. In fact, it is supposed to work with more than one wireless device with the cool mini-stick it came with, presumably no problem for the mouse I already have.

It has ergonomically contoured keys, is ultra light and thin, and came packaged in an eco-friendly box and packing material, all cardboard and soy inks. Not a selling point for me.

But, the reason this keyboard is listed at nearly eighty dollars is how it is powered. It is solar powered. And, it doesn’t even need to be sunlight, but any light. The claim on the box is that even if it sat in total darkness for three months, it would still work. (But without light, how would you see this black and sexy keypad?) But the third month plus a day, it would need light to repower. (Of course, I am tempted to test this.)

It has a supposedly secure wireless transmission frequency, so no one can steal the info I am typing. And it has quite a range. My computer sits on a desk in my living room, the farthest east my apartment is. I can type (without seeing the screen) while in my dark windowless bedroom to the west, and sitting in my bathroom to the east and south, all with walls in between the keyboard and screen/USB receiver.

Is it possible to be in love with a keyboard? I do believe it is.

When I got home, it was the keyboard I cracked open to immediately play with, thinking I could take it with me tomorrow morning to my two jobs, and be happy because the feel of my keyboard at both jobs will be consistent, rather than having to adjust each day at each job.

The netbook? Still in its eco friendly box, seal unbroken. Reminds me of the kid at Christmas time, playing with the wrapper and the box, rather than the actual toy they contained.

It Was a Brilliant Idea….

April 17, 2011

So I had this brilliant idea, and had discussed it with a couple of friends, and they were game if I was willing.

This weekend is Coachella, and I knew when tickets went on sale that I would be working,  so didn’t bother getting a ticket. I haven’t gone for a couple years, conflicts or lack of money or what have you. But when the line up was announced, I saw an option. There were two bands playing on Sunday that if I could get out of tutorings early enough, might be worth the drive.

It used to be that even without a ticket, you could park in the free surrounding parking lots and just chill. I had done it myself, when I found the heat too much, and the idea of going in too early to broil for hours sounded unappealing. I would find some shade (someone’s parked SUV) and chill drinking water. Other people would eagerly park and then pull out the grill and drinks and do a tailgate party. This makes sense, since you can’t bring alcohol or food in, might as well fill up before entering and not be forced to spend a fortune. And if you got close enough to the entrance (again, until you pass the gates, you were allowed to), you could hear easily any bands playing on stages facing the gates. You could even walk around the venue and stand behind other stages and catch their sounds.

I had this idea back when Rage Against the Machine was the closing Sunday act, and I had to flee because of a migraine, the lights and noise just making me want to curl up and cry. I escaped to the parking lot, found my car and spent a long time trying to find an exit. And the sounds of the band? Just awesome, no problem. I wasn’t missing much by not being in the venue.

So I thought about it again last night, called the friends I had discussed it with and said I was willing if they were, I just needed to know before 9 so I could arrange my students today to make it work.

One friend called back to tell me it was a brilliant idea, and she herself was out there, having sold her ticket but kept the reservation at the condo she and her boyfriend always stayed at, and they were having a nice little vacation. The problem was, she reported, was that her friends who were going were telling her security was being an absolute nightmare, and no one was getting within a mile of the venue without the three day weekend wrist bands.

So my plan was no longer viable under the current circumstances. Bummer. Would have worked fine three years ago. But I was glad to know it before setting out on the trip. I would have been annoyed to find my perfect plan didn’t work.

Of course, there was always the option of possibly buying someone’s wrist band who was leaving early, as I want to see bands starting at 7 tonight. I have tiny wrists, and can frequently squeeze one on that someone else has worn. And who wouldn’t want to make some money on something already spent and enjoyed?

But no, I chose the responsible route. Sometimes it sucks to be responsible.

Oh, and it being the end of tax season, I do still have a few hours worth of work on a reconciliation I need to do so that estimated taxes can be filed for the first quarter of 2011. Again, choosing to be responsible. New job and all, and seeing as I haven’t asked yet about taking the vacation I have planned for the end of May, I don’t want there to be any complaints about me being responsible.  Want to get through the current rush/crisis of tax season before even bringing it up.

Random Shots

March 21, 2011

All words and no visuals makes a boring blog.

Here, have a photo or two!

Brick Obama

and the companion piece, on the opposite wall of the opposing building over the parking lot:

Brick Imelda

At least I think it’s Imelda, ya know the famous shoe lover. The large black thing on her right lip is “an architectural feature” of the building, i.e., nothing the artist could do about a pipe sticking straight out.
These are on Spring Street in downtown LA. One day, they were just there. One of those days where I hadn’t been downtown for a month or at least a good few weeks. So much changes down there, I never know what’s happening if I don’t visit once a week or so.
Oh, and another Obama:

Obama was once a Boy...

Have no idea what sort of statement this poster is supposed to be making, but saw it one day in Silverlake, on Sunset at the intersection near Millie’s Cafe, with the light that takes forever to give pedestrians a chance to cross. So good placement at least, as one waits a long time to cross, and has plenty of time to take in the street art….

Fail Forever

March 21, 2011

Lazy post for a lazy day. Only three actual work appointments, so only three hours of work, and now about to start job number three. At least from home, out of the rain and wind.

Heard this band on KEXP song of the day podcast, and I’ve been playing it continuously ever since. I found them on twitter, and found they had re-posted my tweet stating I was listening to them continuously. I’m international now!

When Saints Go Machine: Fail Forever.

Story Time!

March 18, 2011

Here’s one of my little snippets, that keeps me in practice, so I can say I wrote something recently…..

Based on the following suggested words: Guadalupe (when I was searching for the word Guadalahara), bananas, and Jackalope.


Guadalupe sat under the banana tree, taking in the breezes of Guadalahara, as she looked down upon it from her mountain perch above. She was thinking of Jackalopes.

Jackalopes did not exist, she knew, and yet, it would seem as though one were living in her back yard. She had seen the rump of a rabbit nibbling on the lettuce in her little kitchen garden, gone out with a broom to startle it, and when its head lifted up when she had the broom high overhead to swat the ground behind its rump, the rabbit lifted its head and she stopped in mid-lift, mouth hanging open, at the sight of the enormous rack of antlers on its head. The jackalope gave her a look, as if to say “Yeah, I know, you think you must be hallucinating,” and bent its head back down to continue nibbling the tasty tender greens, taking full advantage of her befuddlement.

Guadalupe lowered her broom and collapsed in a heap on the ground. But Jackalopes are a myth. If Jackalopes exist, then does that mean that other myths were true too? What of the Chupa Cabra, the Yeti, the Loch Ness Monster and those other creatures people swore they saw, just couldn’t actually prove having seen?

Proof! She needed proof. She reached into her pocket and realized her phone with its camera was still on the kitchen table, as she was waiting for a call, and had grabbed the broom and headed out the back door without grabbing the phone. Now if she got up to get it, would the jackalope still be there when she returned?

She got up slowly, as the jackalope cast one eye in her direction, while still eating, and eased her way back to the house. When she returned stealthily with the camera, the jackalope was gone.

So it had gone for the next few days. She had given up on saving the lettuce, as it seemed to be his enticement to return, and she was willing to sacrifice it if only she could get a decent picture of him. But she never knew when to expect him and always found herself without her camera. She was running out of lettuce.

Secret Love Life

March 8, 2011

That’s what I wanted to write about.

Someone thinks they are dating me. I think it funny, because I don’t think I’m dating them. So far we have met for coffee, and a dinner. That’s it. No physical action taking place whatsoever. We are fast approaching the third “date,” and everyone knows what that means…..

I think we are hanging out.

Which brings me back to the question I have been grappling with ever since I moved to LA: what constitutes a date? One friend (who I was interested in) told me a date was when one or both parties has an intention that the meeting then leads to the physical realm. I asked him after he pronounced that if he thought of our eating a meal together (which we were doing) as a date. He said “Absolutely not!” Of course he didn’t ask me. And according to his own definition, if he had, he would have found we were on a date.

Anyway, so dating. This male person who thinks we are dating that I think we are just hanging together, gave me a full natal horoscope chart for my own use. I saw something in it I had never read about myself, that I had a tendency to have secret love affairs. It goes further to say “you may get involved in secret love affairs or fall in love with a person who is quite unavailable to you…” and “You can be quite mysterious to others, even if you don’t mean to be, because your romantic needs are kept hidden.” And finally, the coupe de grace: “Although you are quite naturally drawn to relationships that are unusual, secret, challenging, and unequal, do take the time to examine why this may be the case. Be certain that you are not, in some way, punishing yourself because you don’t feel worthy of an equal and public relationship.”

At first I laughed when I read this, because I was thinking of my present involvement, with an entity unnamed, who probably never entertains the thought of being seen in public with me, and certainly never mentions me publicly, despite 10,000+ public tweets to date. (Not all since I have known him. I’m just saying if he wanted to be public about it, he certainly could be, but chooses not to be, thus, secret.)

But then I got to thinking about previous entanglements. I got married in secret. Neither of our families knew anything about it, not until we were getting a divorce.  Of course everyone knew we were a couple, just not that we had married. I remember being at a party where someone who only knew us after we had divorced came up and said he never knew we had been a couple, which I guess proved we played well together afterwards. No one suspected.

And then there was the fellow co-worker I got involved with, whom I didn’t realize wanted to keep me a secret until his roommate walked in on us fooling around on the couch in the dark, and he jumped about three feet away before the light got turned on. Oh, so it’s that way, I remember thinking.

Or the other co-worker I expressed interest in, who admitted he also felt attracted to me, but out of respect for his boss being my ex, he felt he couldn’t get involved with. Of course, it didn’t help he was having a secret relationship himself, which I obviously knew about, and felt his getting involved with me would be a perfect solution, since we could at least be public. But no go. Rejected.

Or the boyfriend I had the summer following high school. Not sure if he ever considered me a girlfriend, because when he returned to college, he mentioned his girlfriend was happy to see him again. Oh. A girlfriend. Didn’t know. Didn’t talk to him for a few years after that revelation.

Or the former boyfriend of a friend, when I went to go visit her in another state, and she had her former bf entertain me since she was busy that particular weekend, but I could stay at her place, and when we ended up in a compromised position on her bed, and he thought he heard her key in the lock, and also scrambled to get away, again I thought, so it’s that way, and, guess they aren’t so former bf and gf…. (She wasn’t at the door. It was just his guilty conscience. I swear, both of them confided in me that they were no longer a couple, so I really didn’t think there was a problem. She appreciated my showing up as a way to get her apartment key back from him without being weird about it.)

What else? The ex-boyfriend who kept coming back, and yet was in relationships with other women. Someone pointed out that I had become the other woman. My logic ran, but I knew him first, I was there first, how did that make me the other woman? Oh, yeah, I guess his girlfriends at the time probably didn’t see it that way. He kept me a secret from them, but I knew about them.

Secrets all. I think the vast majority of my relationships have in some way been secretive or hidden. I don’t strive for it, it just happens. And like I have conveyed above, some I didn’t even know were secrets until a third party showing up made it obvious. (Or a phantom third party.)

So maybe, this person who currently thinks he is dating me, and me thinking I’m not, has more to do with how few public, healthy, acknowledged relationships I have had. Having had dinner last night with a friend who isn’t interested in me in the slightest, and yet whom I find it very hard not thinking about kissing every time I’m around him, I have to say the man who thinks he is dating me I do not have the same reaction to. Not attracted to. That’s a reason to not be dating, right?

And then finally, I have to add the observation of one of my students. She asked me what I did Valentine’s Day, and I rolled my eyes and said “Nothing.” So I did see my secret lover, but what of it? There were no chocolates or flowers or dinner or champagne or professions of love, far from it. Very little kissing was involved, for that matter. And I love kissing. I wasn’t going to mention any of that to her. She looked me straight in the eye and said “Sarah, you make it sound like you don’t deserve a boyfriend.”

She’s in 8th grade. I think she has a valid point, and I’ve been thinking about it ever since she said it.

Hello March, we meet again….

March 8, 2011

How did it get to be March?

Strangely enough, my planning is currently for the end of May and early June. Another trip planned, time for the annual visit to the folks, via a conference in San Francisco, and a music festival or two along the way. And friends and former family too.

But who knows, that’s months away. I am trying to get my students complete before the deadline I have for my travels begin, a couple of weeks earlier than the actual deadline. But hey, I’m the one creating the schedule, it will happen.

In the meantime, I’ve gotten another couple of jobs on my plate. All vastly underpaying me, but I’m taking them for the potential of future, larger jobs they both have prospects for, and in addition, have prospects for future at home working, not commuting to the job site as is current. So, maybe no one will notice if I take off for a few weeks, if I get the work done during that time. Maybe I can even live a few months with the folks on a regular basis. One can but hope I can make it work.

But wait, that wasn’t what I wanted to post about. And since I have been so negligent in my posting, I might as well make the new topic its own post.

But before I do that, can I just say what a crazy sleep schedule I have right now? I typically wake up every night somewhere in the 3 – 5 am range, wide awake. The last time in my life that happened, I was psychically linked to someone, and it meant they were thinking about me. I even know it as a fact, because often a minute or two later, he would call and ask if his calling woke me, and I could honestly say no, as I was wide awake from his thinking of me. I used to get mad at him, because some nights he would think better of calling me, but he had still woken me with his thinking about me. I’d even ask him, to verify he had thought about it. Sure enough. I would tell him he might as well call, he had already woken me up.

Anyway, I wonder who is thinking about me so regularly now, that it wakes me up most nights. And it doesn’t matter when I go to sleep. I usually check email, read twitter, maybe even play some solitaire if I still can’t fall asleep. Of course I don’t get out of bed and do anything useful. That would be silly. I wait for the alarm to tell me when to do that.

iTunes Playlist

February 7, 2011

It’s been a while since I posted. There was the computer fiasco, where the cat somehow managed to re-orient the screen to reading upright to the left, rather than upright in landscape like usual. Took calling a techie friend to figure out how to reset my computer. It certainly wasn’t an option in the display settings of the control panel that I could find. My friend just started punching random keys, assuming the random spacing of paws would have had to have done the work.

The cat is frequently opening the computer to random websites, resetting settings, turning it off. He likes his butt to be warm, what can I say? I never know what I will come home to.

So today, I was thinking about working on a novel I had set aside for the last decade, ideas of what to do with it flowing as I took my morning constitutional. Like it was finally time, the emotional charge that used to be so debilitating when I tried to edit it might finally be gone. So I thought I would like to do a playlist of songs to listen to while working on it to get in the mood. I actually have thoughts of turning it into a movie, so I have specific moodscapes I think would set the tone for the different scenes. In terms of it being a movie, I also have certain color schemes for the different parts of the movie, as the character grows and expands. (Or dies and is reborn, as the case is.)

This is all in my head of course. So a playlist, like the mixtapes I used to make, seemed in order. Yeah, late to the party technologically, as usual. First playlist, after having iTunes for years.

I carefully chose my songs based on key word searches like BLOOD, BLEEDING, VAMPIRES, LUST, DYING…. you get the idea. Some are funny, like I figure Pete Townsend’s “Give Blood” can be playing as a radio commercial for the Red Cross to increase blood donations, while the heroine is stuck in Los Angeles traffic. Things like that. I want my serious blood and sex filled movie to have notes of humor and continuity, like Robocop did with its fake ads and newscasters. Suzanne Vega’s “Blood Makes Noise” plays when the stalker vampire is checking out his new target. I even managed to work some favorite artists into the mix with the help of their titles, like Radiohead’s “We suck Young Blood,” The National’s “Bloodbuzz Ohio,” and Nine Inch Nail’s “The Four of Us are Dying.” 

I have actually been thinking of this playlist for quite awhile, but this was the first cut of it. There are other songs I know belong on it that have shocked me when I am listening on my iPod, the completely synchronistic fit with the mood and sentiment I am trying to evoke. But they don’t have the word blood or death in them. I will find them again. This playlist may take a year or two to completely flesh out, and as the re-writing of it changes the moods, so shall the songs. It will be fun.

But, what I wanted to say, was as easy as the playlist was to create, when I went and opened it, despite having created exactly the order in which I wanted to put the songs in, and having selected them in exactly that order, when I opened it, it was alphabetical by artist. Crap. What was the point of putting them in the order I wanted?

I looked up how to make a playlist on several websites, and none of them talked about exactly ordering them. Apparently, I’m just supposed to be happy with this mood of music in any old order. Uh, no.

Sometimes I am disappointed with Apple products. As intuitive as it is supposed to be, I find some of the most basic things I want to be doing to not be easily found nor intuitive. It took reading yet another website talking about changing the order of the songs for me to finally find there was yet another listing order I had missed. Ahh, now they were all in the proper order. I want the heavy, ponderous music of Ministry, Godsmack, Queens of the Stone Age to all come in a cluster, not be confused with the turning point mood of the narrative created by the songs of Radiohead, Tori Amos and a new band I’ve discovered called Le Verita. And of course, at the very end, Johnny Cash stands alone with “Flesh and Blood.”

Such a range of music. What a great playlist! Now I can get to writing and re-writing, since I have the perfect moods for the various scenes. Yay.