Ramblings when I should be off reading the Maze Runner ARC or sleeping

Not really much to post about. I had a great time at Conduit seeing friends and talking books. Very nice Schlock Mercenary launch party, for which I dropped in and took some pictures. I’ll be downloading those straight to Sandra, who will probably post them on her LJ or Howard’s blog or both. I’m not terribly satisfied with the pictures–it was pretty dark in that room and I had to use flash, which always flattens the subject–but hopefully the Taylers and Schlock fans will enjoy them.

Went on my first bike ride of the year and it was nice, but I probably should have started with a jaunt closer to home, because while the outbound trip was awesome, I realized just why that was on the way home when the wind hit me squarely in the face. Between the wind (it was pretty blustery), my sore behind from not being in the saddle for six months, and being tired from the ride out, I ended up getting off and walking at least twice. I’m thinking I’ll take a rest day tomorrow and try again on Wednesday, but not try a total of about 7-8 miles round trip. Perhaps 2-3 total for a few days, to get back in the swing of things!

Had my own personal Bones marathon today, watching all the episodes from this season that I’d missed and had been recording on the DVR. Maybe if I clear out the DVR I won’t feel so bad about dropping the cable, which I’m really going to have to do. Also went to a barbecue at a friend’s, and thought about all my family members and others who have served in the military. I come from a long line of farmers, salt of the earth kind of people, and as you can imagine those are the type that tend to get drafted. (I also descend from one draft-dodger, and I’m grateful he did, or I wouldn’t have been born a Whitman, I suppose–he stowed away on a cattle boat to avoid the draft of William the First and Bismarck, the Second Reich that killed off a great number of Prussian peasants, and came to the US, to Illinois, and became my great-great-grandfather.) I have ancestors who served on both sides of the Civil War, including one who was on Sherman’s March to the sea, several vets of the War of 1812 (another reason I’m an Illinoisan–western Illinois was veteran pension land-grant land for War of 1812 vets), vets of several minor skirmishs, two grandfathers and a great-uncle who served in the army and air force, respectively, during WWII, and an uncle who fought in Vietnam.

More recently, I have an uncle who served in the Marines during peacetime (during the 70s) and an uncle who just retired from the Air Force as a navigator a few years ago. That same Uncle Kevin served two or three tours post-September 11th as a translator. My brother and several cousins have served in the reserves wherever needed. I have several friends who have done tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, and several friends whose husbands are currently or who have been deployed.

I wouldn’t consider my family a “military” family. Far from it. We’re just average working Americans, and each of these people served when they were called to do so, or even just to find a better life through the GI Bill. But it makes me proud of them to know that they served when they were needed, even if they occasionally did so a bit cantankerously. The cantankerousness–that’s just a Whitman family trait. 🙂

Back to real life tomorrow, catching up again on those short pieces I didn’t get to yet last week, and two manuscripts that I have waiting in the queue as well. I’ve got a few other things going on this week that I’m excited about but can’t talk about yet, so when I can, well, I guess I’ll drop the mystery and post it. 🙂 Off to sleep!