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1 comment
In early March, Destiny and I bought some seedling supplies. Nearly everything sprouted, which was surprising considering the age of some of the seeds. We have packets just lying around in kitchen drawers, just for fun.

Rows of tiny seedlings, under a plastic cover to keep in the humidity, Destiny checked on them daily. The instructions said not to transplant the tiny sprouts until genuine leaves appear. Two rows on the far left developed the fastest; those seeds were also the oldest, taken from a freebie packet of random vegetable seeds that Grandma Dahlsad gave Destiny two summers ago.

Five of the mystery vegetable seedlings were strong enough to transplant; two appear to be pumpkins (maybe squash or cucumber), one was corn (which died from plant lice recently), one unidentified tiny plant, and one bean. There were also quite a few carrots, which were transplanted into a large shallow pot.

As the bean grew, I wrapped it around the baker's shelves that I use as a plant stand. I sprayed it with insecticide when it contracted plant lice from the corn. Destiny watered it and checked to make sure it was doing okay, like she does with all of our greenery.

Friday morning, I happenned to rearrange a few pots, to reach a wonderful discovery -- on the sunward side of the rack, behind several other plants, the bean had produced fruits!

I called Destiny to show her, and she laughed at the sight. "Peas!" she said. "No, it's a bean," I corrected. I picked the largest one and offered her a bite. Experience has taught her not to eat strange things from my hands, so I took a big bite as an example. Still unsure about eating this pot-grown bean, she finally was willing to eat a single seed from inside the pod.

She spit it out shortly after.

The Corsica is officially for sale. Just a few more pieces of paperwork to complete, and I'll have purchased a 1999 Ford Contour SE. Mine's burgundy, though, as opposed the one in this photo, but it's the right car. As you've noticed earlier, I've put quite a bit of effort & money into the Corsica, so I finally decided to get some money back out of it. The Contour should last me a while without any mechanical problems, I hope. The Corsica would probably last me several more years, putting a little money into it here and there, but it's not worth it to me when compared to the emotional health of having a newer, happier vehicle.

Dig that crazy layout! This was incarnation #2 of 11111001111, when I was trying to me more like kottke, with the minimalism and crap like that.

Many years ago, like, two, I was interviewed by A∴ B∴, at that time a new writer for The Forum, for an article on locally-created personal websites. Earlier that year I had been interviewed for an article on the Receipt Site, so I couldn't pass up another opportunity to get my webwork in the Forum.

Since I've had A∴ on my mind for a couple weeks now, and since my media presence has been waning of late, I dug this out of my Big Bag 'o Media Exposure and scanned it for all to see.

Here's what she had to say about 11111001111, and my personal website:

Don't Be Shy
Some people are concerned about privacy on the Internet. Not Derek Dahlsad, who publishes Derek's Web Page( Web is the Fargo man's channel: He keeps a "brain log" of random thoughts, lists the contents of his CD player and writes essays like "Meditation" or "Nobody Escapes Fargo." But he also lets those who visit the site see him, thanks to uploaded snapshots and a web camera in his room...

Okay, so it's not that great of an article (it's in dire need of an editor's hand), but it's got me in it! Hooray! My brother calls me a media whore, and I'm proud of it.

You may wonder - hey - where'd the webcam go? It was too much of a pain in the butt, so I got rid of it. Sorry, folks.

Finally, I can already hear the m utterings: "man, Derek was harsh on A∴ in his original commentary on this article - she must be pissed!" Well, dear fellows, she's not that bad of a writer, and I followed up with a positive review of her writing in December of that same year. She's less a reporter, more of an author, so she struggles with some stories while succeeding at others.

Destiny asked me to draw a horse for her, as part of a much larger piece of artwork that she was creating. I did pretty good, but it didn't meet her standards, so she abandoned it.

A little bit later, I peeked over her shoulder at what she was drawing.

"Boy, that's a nice horse!"

"It's not a horse -- it's a giraffe, dad."

I submitted a pic to The Mirror Project -- it's the view from my toilet.

Hanging above my throne is a plaster Jesus statue with a broken right hand, and directly opposite (in front of the can) is a framed print of Rembrandt's Young Girl at an Open Half-Door. It's been set up this way for over 3 years now, but only recently I noticed the conjunction of items & reflections that appears in this photo. I thought it was so cool, that I had to submit it to Jezebel's site of reflected photos.

Unfortunately, for a photo to be accepted, it needs to show a reflection of the photographer. Since I am not a plaster Jesus, my 'blog is my only outlet for this photo. It's still pretty cool, so I'll let you all have a gander at it, despite exclusion from the Mirror site.

1 comment
This is a little late to the internet, but there's no harm is spreading out the information, as an ongoing reminder to the friends and relatives of my grandparents.

On Saturday, May 25th, there will be an open house celebrating the 50th wedding anniversary of my paternal grandparents, and my grandfather's 80th birthday. I owe a lot of my grandparents, both sets of them, for support I've received over the years. I pretty much lived with the Dahlsads for the first 5 years of my life, because my family shared the family homestead with them until Grandpa retired from farming, and they let me live in their basement for my first two years of college. This is why I try to promote contact between Destiny and my grandparents, her great-grandparents -- I knew this long before any studies were performed, just from my personal experience: intergenerational contact is very important to children. Doesn't have to be grandparents, but they're the handiest for me & Destiny. When I go to class every Tuesday, my maternal & paternal grandparents alternate weeks watching Destiny. She looks forward to it, and she always has a lot of fun with them. Both sets of grandparents have told me that they love having Destiny over, and they are genuinely pleased to see her. When they talk about Destiny, there isn't a trace of "we're doing this to help you" in their voice - they are truly thankful to me for letting them have the opportunity to see her. Destiny's grandparents, my parents, feel the same way, and I try to do all that I can to help them have contact with Des, despite the distance. Destiny has never objected to being left with the older generation; she may get a little quirky before her mom's visitation, but when I drop her off at any of the grandma & grandpa's, she's like "thanks, bye, see ya!"

You might look at this and say, well, Destiny is just a good kid and would be fun for anyone. I think it's the other way around. Because she has developed close & healthy relationships with a variety of generations & ages, she has a healthier personality than if she spent a lot of time here at home, or only with children her own age.

Daily Condition:

in cd player: beck, odelay

my condition: winding down after a busy weekend. Running out the clock until I can pick up Destiny from her mom's.

There are bands -- the bands who perform those songs that you instantly recognize, yet have no idea who performs them. Sometimes, you don't know the tune either, but the "sound" has a familiarity to it. It strikes that taut cord which threads your skull from the eardrum to the artsy fraction of the brain. You hear a snippet, you take it to heart, but you can't connect to the informational data stored by the logic centers. The music is there, but you'll be damned if you can remember who the song is by.

Thus, I'm brought to Cake. Many years ago, like, two years, a friend held out a CD case and said "you'd like Cake. You should borrow this CD sometime." Unfortunately, I didn't borrow the CD -- I knew nothing about Cake, and her taste in music wasn't exactly in line with my tastes, so I felt I could not trust her recommendation.

Distance reminds me of that Simpson's episode, which induced me to download it & include it on a mix CD. However, I recently discovered that they performed that kick ass cover of "I Will Survive." Since I've been driving a rental car I've been forced to listen to local radio, upon which I heard "Short Skirt Long Jacket" at lunch, which induced me to download it and listen to it tonight while avoiding my homework. Finally, Wil Wheaton referenced Cake in his response to my stupid inquiry, so, hey, Wil likes it, and that's a big deal anyways.

The ratio of Cake to non-Cake music in my head has reached a critical mass, and as such I've downloaded a bunch of their music. Copyrights be damned -- now that I've figured out that the unnamed cool music I've heard in the past does belong to a specific artist, I have been forced to take action.

Car trouble is one of the few things that can really get me depressed. The mechanic's diagnosis was a "cracked head;" my guess the cost will run around $1,500.

I have to rely on my car for so many things, that being without it fills me with dread. Additionally, the cost is always excessive - spending a couple thousand on new siding for a house isn't bad considering the value of a home, but a couple thousand spent to repair a car that's worth next to nothing is unreasonable.

Not that buying another car is an option - if I could afford a couple hundred bucks a month in new car payments, I'd probably go that route. Unfortunately, it's easier for me to come up with $1,500 now than to spread out the cost of a $7,000 over 2 or 3 years. My hopes were that this car could last me at least until next year, giving me the chance to save up for a new vehicle, but this sets me back in several ways.

Plus, I have to be in Bismarck on Friday night for a school function, so my car needs to be ready to go within the next 48 hours. The mechanic won't be able to repair anything until at least tomorrow, so I'm driving a rental car for the time being. That costs money as well. Money & mobility are the two most valuable things in our society, and I have neither.

She ordered while I studied the wall-mounted menu.

"A number twelve, no tomatoes, and I'll have one of these," she said, gesturing to a bottled water.

She turned and spoke to me; I can't remember what she said, but I remember looking into her eyes.

The cashier forgot her change, interrupting my order.

I restarted, "a number four, no tomatoes, and a Mello Yello."

"No tomatoes!" she exclaimed, punctuated with a high-five.

Yesterday, Destiny and I dragged ourselves from bed in the earliest hours of the morning. Our destination was the Fargo Theatre, for a live performance of MPR's Morning Show. I've been listening to the show since the 1980s, and Destiny has heard it pretty much every morning of her life. I couldn't pass up the opportunity to see them live, and Des has never been to the Fargo Theatre, so everything sorta came together at once.

The performance began at 6am - usually that's the moment where my alarm engages, at which time I instinctively turn it off and return to bed for 10 minutes. We were sitting in the third row, house left, directly in front of Dale & Jim Ed's stools. Des didn't quite know what to think; large groups of people are overwhelming for her, but she did fine once the show got moving. I expected that Destiny would last only an hour or so, at the most, but she wanted to stay the entire 3 hours that were broadcast.

Part of her reason for staying started when a woman sat down at the end of our row, two seats away. I looked at her, doubted myself, then looked again: it was A∴ B∴, entertainment writer for the Fargo Forum. Once, she had interviewed me for a piece she did on local websites, and we've exchanged emails in the past, but I'd never met her in person. I recognized her from the photo in her newspaper column, and when I introduced Des & myself she commented that she recognized us from our websites (different media, same outcome). She took a few quotes from us during a news-break, and I thought that was that. Destiny wanted to move up to the balcony, and as we were packing our stuff she turned to Ms. B∴ and said, "you can come with us!" Destiny took quite a shine to her; A∴ ended up being more entertaining than the MPR performance :) She let Des doodle on her notes from last week's n*sync concert, and we got to bring a few sketches home. I must've made an impression as well. Later that day I asked Andrea if she'd like to go out to dinner or a movie, and she accepted (she reads this site, so I probably need to watch what I type :) Destiny's high point occurred as we were leaving. A∴ had gone backstage to get some interviews, and as we were putting on our coats she had walked out onstage. I said "Des, look," at which point A∴ waved. Des waved back as everyone onstage turned to see who Andrea was waving to. Another cute comment: Andrea emailed me to say that, as she was going backstage, someone asked if that cute little girl she was sitting with was her daughter. If only Destiny were more comfortable with crowds, she could easily be an entertainment force unto herself! She certainly draws attention.

But, back to the show -- Peter Ostroushko was wonderful; his name is tossed around a lot in the Minneapolis music scene, and he's been around the entire music industry, with good reason. Becky Schlegel, whose music isn't really my style, impressed me. Her music is reminicent of Jewel, but with a more country twist. My ears defined her sound as "folk," the lone singer/songwriter with her guitar, but she has a level of talent exceeding that of the "poets-with three-chords" which weighs down most folk collections. Bluegrass is probably the best defininition, given by her website. The Hard Bop Saxophone Quartet, a local collection of music teachers with saxophones, prompted this question from Destiny: "What's a quartet?" These Hard Boppers performed a couple songs, and helped out Jim Ed with a comedy segment. There was a flautist and another stringed-instrumentist, too. All together, the live performers put on a great show.

Boy, this is getting long -- anyways, Dale Connelly & Jim Ed Poole did their usual schtick. The focal performance was the stunt of Nephew Thomas, pulling down a flying helicopter to the stage floor. Silliness abounded (Peter Ostroushko played the helicopter pilot), but Nephew succeeded in the end. I enjoyed the performances, Destiny had fun, we got quoted in the paper, and I met A∴ B∴ finally -- all in the first three hours of the day!

The drive-through at Burger King was slow, and I relaxed in the doldrums between placing the order and reaching the pick-up window.

I glanced in my mirror at the rusting Caddilac behind me. A tired woman was in the driver's seat, and a man in his early 20s was the passenger. He sat low in his seat, knees on the dashboard, holding his cigarette like a joint. She was placing the order, he was just sitting there.

Once she finished and pulled away from the microphone he became animated, jesturing angrily. Swear words are the easiest when reading lips: "fucking...this shit...and THEN...crap...fuck...when he...shit...fucking..." She just stared emptily at my car's bumper, before resting her head in her hand, looking at the floor.

The line moved up while she was trying to ignore her passenger; he was further angered that their car hadn't followed along with everyone else. She said something, but I don't think he heard. He continued with his tirade, up until I had my food and was pulling away.

Daily Condition:

in CD player: tellu, suden aika

my condition: cold; spring isn't coming fast enough.

1 comment
eBay April Fool's jokeHappy April Fool's Day! I'm horrible at April Fools, mostly because I'm always making up crap anyways. I always play jokes on Destiny, so she wouldn't notice the difference. I'm already coming up with wierd things constantly at work, and people question what I say anyways. In "news of real April Fool's Jokes", coworker Jason told my boss that her friend's house burnt down, and the Times of India claimed that Osama had been arrested. Fark, trying to be as annoying as possible, is dialectizing everything. Wil Wheaton has his own Operating System. Hopefully, Mr. Wheaton is joking when he says Wesley Crusher will have a recurring role on Enterprise. And, finally, eBay has some rather absurd changes to their front page today.

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