29 July 2014

The Types of Schadenfreude (but only one type of pie)

Schadenfreude is a delightful word for a not-delightful idea:  It's taking delight in the harm to others.

But I'm going to suggest that the range of studies on the emotion might not be measuring quite the same thing.

Let's say you face the (so-called) problem of the "Old Boy's Club" (and you not being a member of them) like I wrote about back here.   And you're following my advice, writing more, writing harder, and succeeding.

If the Old Boy's Club stumbles and falls, and you're delighted, that's straight up schadenfreude.  No question there.

But if the Old Boy's Club is forced to recognize you - to their discomfort and pain - is that schadenfreude? Or is it something else?  Is there a word for that?

The key difference I'm looking at are whether it's associated with an elevation of one's own fortune versus simply the downfall of others.

What do you all think?  Or is it even more nuanced than that?

But for all that, there's only one Schadenfreude Pie.

25 July 2014

Open Letter To My Son And My Ex (Yes, Again, Sorry Everyone)

Sorry folks.  I try to not post this stuff on here too much.  This is a time-sensitive thing, and I can't pass up the chance to see my son.

Earlier this week my son let me know that he'd be in my town this weekend with my ex.  He offered one time for me to get together with him, which I enthusiastically agreed to.  I also pointed out that I would gladly clear my weekend, keep tabs on he and his friend so my ex and her friend could do stuff, and so on.

Since it's been over a year since she's let me see him and all.  I'm kinda excited to see him.

Unfortunately, after that brief time talking to him, I have been unable to get in touch with him in any way.  She took his cell phone away a while back (and disconnected the number), and I have no idea if he has any kind of access to anything.

Which means that I have no idea where to pick him up at the arranged time, let alone if any other time is okay. 


My weekend is clear.  I'm looking forward to seeing him.  The only obstacle is him being able to confirm with me what time(s) I am to see him, and making firm arrangements.

So I'm posting this here, as a public record of my willingness and desire to co-operate, and that I don't know of any way to communicate with my ex, my son, or whomever she's visiting. 

So there's a widget below to my Google Voice number. And, of course, my ex knows where I live.

I'm hoping that she will let my son visit with me.

And thanks, everyone else, for your forbearance of this post.

Hey - Did You Miss Out On Steampunk World? TIME TO PRE-ORDER!

My mail carrier probably hates me.

That's because of the overgrown plants by my mailbox, actually.  But shipments like this don't help:

That is about a third of the books that I'll be packing up and shipping back out as backer rewards for Steampunk World.  The good news, though, is that now I've got a solid timeline for releasing the book to the general public.

Steampunk World will be publicly released on 15 August 2014, just in time for GenCon.  :)

You can pre-order the book, though, either through Amazon or directly through Alliteration Ink.

Spread the word and pre-order today!