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Those of you who know me know that I'm a former resident of Dearborn Heights, MI. My parents moved there shortly after I was born, and I lived there until 2007 when my parents pulled up stakes due to financial reasons and moved to a small town somewhere in Kansas, leaving 22 and a half years of friends and memories behind. Some of them permanently.
I didn't get much sleep last night. I ate dinner late, had some chocolate milk with it, and because of that I couldn't fall asleep until after 2a.m. Then shortly before 6 I woke up from a dream that had me incredibly nostalgic and left me unable to sleep anymore (probably spurred on by the song "Always" by Erasure, which I listened to a lot in the late 90s), so I figure I might as well talk about my home a little bit.
The neighborhood I lived in was situated between four major roads: Van Born Rd. to the South, U.S. Route 24 to the West (or Telegraph Road, as it is known locally), Michigan Avenue to the North, and M-39, a.k.a. the Southfield Freeway, to the East. There are bunches of locales in the area that bring me memories: Doughboy Doughnuts, located near where Van Born met with M-39; K-Mart, located at the end of the street that I lived on as a kid for 8 years; the Pack Shack, where I used to buy Star Wars Miniatures after the game became popular; Ford Lanes on Van Born and Oxford Lanes on Telegraph, where I used to go when I wanted to exert myself physically without doing something overly demanding... Henry Ford Community College (now just HFC), where possibly the best years of my life were spent...
There's this Walgreen's at the corner of Telegraph and Van Born... dunno if it's still open or not. During my college years, there was this middle-aged clerk there who used to call me "Smiley" because I'd always exited the building with this big smile on my face whenever I bought something. I remember my Mom always hated that intersection because of the high risk of accidents.
My Dad and I used to go to Doughboy's on Saturdays for doughnuts and cherry cola. The counter stools were the type that you could spin around on, so naturally I had a lot of fun with that. The shop picked up a TV at some point, meaning that my Dad ended up watching a few episodes of "Kim Possible" when it first aired. He didn't seem to mind the show too much, which was surprising to me since modern-day entertainment on the whole doesn't really appeal to him.
There was a Toys 'R' Us on Michigan Avenue where I bought Pokemon Sapphire in 2003. I wanted the game bad enough that I walked up there to buy it, which I later confirmed was over a 4 and a half mile round trip... my memories of that game are a whole other story, though.
I lived equally distant between two different Pizza Huts. Seriously, it took me a half hour on the dot to walk to either one.
I remember this one video rental place on Telegraph that my Dad went to in the late 80s. When we lived a bit closer to the place from 1997 on, I remember my Dad going there to rent something for the first time in years and being surprised to find out that his name was still in their computer systems after all that time.
You have no idea just how much I want to meander down Van Born just one more time... unfortunately, doing that doesn't appeal to me much anymore. Doughboy's is gone... from what I understand its owners set up shop in another part of the county just within the past five years. Of course, K-Mart went out of business (fun fact: my Dad worked at their HQ for a few years as a programmer). A lot of the shops that I knew, including this one gas station where I used to buy Doritos in the late evenings, have long closed down... the Giant System, an old-fashioned burger joint...
If I had to guess, that woman who used to call me "Smiley" has probably either retired or found another job elsewhere. Never knew her too well, but I liked having a nickname that wasn't demeaning in some way. I kinda miss her.
Oxford Lanes closed down at some point, I know that much. I think it was converted into a used car dealership. The Toys 'R' Us is gone now too, of course, as is that video rental store. Ford Lanes is still around...
...I'm sorry, everyone. I'm rambling. I don't know if I needed to talk about all of this or not, but I needed to sit down and type. I guess what I'm trying to say that as much as living in the middle of nowhere has grown on me, I still miss the suburban life I used to lead. Sorry for taking up your time over nothing.
Just wanted to throw this out there for the few of you who might be interested in this sort of thing. I can't recall if I've talked about this before or not, so just to make myself sure I'm going to take care of this now.
Gormless is my own attempt at writing in the MLP: FiM: EG-U. It's less an attempt at something good and more an experiment; I wanted to try and figure out just how I, as a 14-year-old (with the lack of experience and know-how that implies, along with a possible case of Asperger Syndrome) at Canterlot High, would've dealt with pre-redemption Sunset Shimmer. My first blog post here at EP has a few more details, so you can check there if you'd like.
See, it's one thing to say that you'd know how to outlast her attitude, or to say that you wouldn't put up with any nonsense from her and derail her schemes without issue. The problem with that is that more often than not, we're looking at things from an erroneous perspective. If you've long since graduated from college and/or high school and attained some level of wisdom, you at least have the benefit of hindsight. If you're of high school age and you say those things, then realistically you're just setting yourself up for a serious fall: it's been my experience that teenagers believe wholeheartedly that they can do no wrong, then something happens to take the wind out of their sails. Either way, the plot has been done to death.
On the other hand, Puma Claw is not only winging it through life and trying to make it from one day to the next without anything catastrophic happening: he really has no idea what he's getting into. And he's not afraid to admit it, either.
On the off-chance you feel like reading it, then the story can be found below. My mind is flaky and slow at the best of times, though, so don't expect regular updates.
P.S. - For anyone who doesn't get the story's description at FiM, it's basically the theme song from the old Clueless TV series with the lyrics re-written to fit Puma.
My dad recently got (and accepted) a job offer back in Michigan (not in the same area, mind you, but nearer to Lake Michigan). The intent is for him to make enough money to finish paying off our house and take care of our remaining debts, with me contributing a portion of my own pay towards that end, and it looks like things might work out for the best in that regard. That's not what's bothering me, though.
Previously, the plan was for him to stay up there, book a motel, find a semi-permanent residence, then come back and pick up Mom and the cats if it looks like his job is stable. My Mom decided that she didn't like to be without him for that long, so the both of them will be leaving together by the middle of next week. Leaving me here in Kansas on my own, taking care of the cats until the end of the month. And then after that, even they'll be gone, with no definite word on when everyone will return, if at all.
Those who know my backstory might say "it's about time" at this point. I mean, I'm in my mid-thirties while my parents are both up around or at 70. Young birds have to leave the nest eventually, after all, and off the Internet I've never been what one would call a "social" person. I treasure my solitude greatly.
But it doesn't change the fact that I'm going to miss them when they're gone.
"If you don't say good-bye, you're never really gone. You're just not here right now." --- Agent Carolina, Red Vs. Blue
When I was in college 15 or so years ago, I used to walk as far as the nearest movie theater and Toys 'R' Us (which were on the same block). At the time I knew it was a bit of a trek, but I never stopped to consider just how long it was. So out of curiosity recently, I went online to find out how far apart those places were from my old house. The answer I got was around 2.3 miles.
This doesn't seem like anything unusual, but keep in mind: I walked up there. Not biked, not drove, walked. There's also the fact that said facilities were right off of Michigan Avenue, probably the busiest road in the entire state, and I had to safely traverse a nearby street and overpass that received more than its fair share of traffic as a result. In addition, keep in mind that I'd need to walk back, which adds up to 4.6 miles or thereabouts. Considering that I weighed around 270 pounds at the time (prior to a major illness, but that's another topic)... well, it's amazing the sort of lengths a person will go just to get his hands on a video game, right? >^_^<
(And in retrospect, this means that nearly the entire town I live in now is within my walking range. Granted its hillier than Dearborn Heights and Dearborn ever were, but still.)
...my thanks to the Internet, and especially to those out there (you know who you are) that helped make life entertaining via RP this past decade.
...Okay, this isn't targeted at too many people, but I wanted to throw it out there anyway. >^_^< Not much else to say, so enjoy another lackluster attempt at art!
The next in a line of odd fanfiction ideas.
Simply put, Yukari Yakumo---who's apparently an old acquaintance of Celestia---gets in contact with her and suggests an exhibition match: a select team of ponies versus a select team of humans and youkai.
What kind of match? Magic duels? Spellcard matches? Nope. Neither of those.
See? Told you it was odd. I don't have the lineups in front of me (they're at my laptop at work), but I'll try to post them and my rationale behind some of the choices at a later date if possible.
The idea for it was inspired by this Touhou animation that Spotty Ren at Youtube threw together a little while ago.
I've got a couple of MLP fanfic ideas brewing in my brain. I don't know if anything's going to become of them, or if they'll just get chucked into the back of the fridge for who knows how long. Thankfully their only real expiration date is when I expire, so they'll still be good no matter when I eat them. Hopefully.
I've written a little bit in all three, but I'll refrain from posting any of them here.
First up is... a one-shot crossover. Well, sort of. It's supposed to link up with Dragon Ball Z Abridged, but it doesn't feature any of the cast we know of from there.
The story takes place at least a full decade (with emphasis on at least) before the start of FiM Season 1, and during Season 2 of DBZA. The ponies' homeworld is discovered smack-dab on the border between Freeza and Cooler's respective territories, and a lone grunt/scientist is dispatched on a suicide mission to determine whether the world is valuable enough to be purged for resources. As a side plot, the story would also focus on how Derpy gets her Cutie Mark.
Second up is... another one-shot crossover. This one's with the in-progress video game Totally Accurate Battle Simulator.
The story takes place during the Season 4 finale. Tirek has just gotten done absorbing all of Twilight's collected magic, but this triggers a failsafe in Equestria itself that summons a Chicken Man Man from the depths of the planet. Thus distracted, Tirek doesn't notice the Mane Six and Discord escaping, dismissing them completely until after his new foe is defeated---and is wiped out by Rainbow Power as per canon.
After everything settles down, Twilight conducts a brief investigation of where their temporary ally came from and the intentions of the being that created it, and that is that. I don't have it planned out much further than that, sadly.
This one is a self-insertion set in the EG-verse, before and during the events of the movies.
*sound of browser tabs closing*
And I wouldn't blame you in the least, but hear me out on this one.
As a kid in high school and college, I wrote my fair share of SI fanfiction. As you'd expect, they typically depicted me as having some sort of ability that was unique to me, or else would make me superior to the protagonists in some fashion or another. Towards the end of my college years, this mindset started to die down; and in recent years, it's reformed into something a bit different.
In the story---tentatively named "Clueless in Canterlot High"---my character would've started school there a full year before the events of the first EG movie. As a freshman he has no idea what's going on, has nothing really special about him, and has problems of his own to deal with---with the bulk of them revolving around pre-redemption Sunset Shimmer, along with everything that entails. Essentially, the story would deal with how a guy with zero impact on the overall plot and a mind that's unfocused at the best of times would be able to last in that environment from day to day.
And that's pretty much all I have. Again, I don't know how these'll go, but I guess time will tell, won't it? Ciao mein, everyone, and I'll see you in the funny pages.
-- Curtis Wildcat