Friday, December 07, 2007

The Tale of the Psychic Dreamer, a Book I Bought the Kiddo and My Wahoo is Broken

First, the book. I bought kiddo several books for his 16th birthday (he turned 16, today) and he was happy with all of them but this was my personal favorite find, Undercover Cat. While browsing at an Oklahoma bookstore that carries used books, I came across this book and thought, "Wow, that sounds like That Darn Cat." Then, I saw the little blurb that said it was soon to be made into a motion picture by Disney. Aha! Definitely the book that came first. It was only $2.95 and kiddo was thrilled. What more could a booklover ask for than a son who becomes overjoyed when Mom brings home a little box of books for his birthday? Uber cool.

So, I guess that's a big wahoo, isn't it? I just could not get up the energy to do a wahoo post, this week, and have gotten to the point that I think My Wahoo is Broken. But, it could be that I just don't feel much like posting. It's been a long month. Still, there is much to be grateful for. Eldest is now completely finished with his undergraduate work and in the process of moving his possessions to Memphis. But, he also has added to his Stupid Eldest Tricks by getting a credit card. Oh, son, did none of that Dave Ramsey stuff we pounded in your head get through? We are working hard at shutting off the parental control switch. He will hear the words, "There will not be a rescue if you get yourself into debt," repeatedly, in the coming months. That much I know.

And, on to The Tale of the Psychic Dreamer. Just a little chunk of mod fabric for a "WooooOooo" effect:

This is a Hanging Out at Burger King story. You've really got to love those gathering places with wireless internet access. People talk loudly on cell phones and their laptop screens are in plain view. And, sometimes they're so lonely that they see you playing on your computer and use it as an opener for conversation. That was the case with The Psychic Dreamer. An older fellow, silver-haired and very lonely ("Most of the managers from Pipeline Accounting are dead!" he said, and I realized that was why he was talking to me - the people he was friends with at our former workplace weren't around, anymore), he was a regular at Burger King and spoke to whoever happened to be nearby.

When I first met him, The Psychic Dreamer (TSD) and I chatted about the hostile takeover attempt of Conoco, Inc. by Seagrams, back in the 1980's, and how we'd both been working in one of the two "towers" that were then fairly new. TSD told me that space was now being rented out and that he had a dream that he was standing on top of the North Tower, looking at the tank field, nearby. The towers, he said, had been turned into apartment complexes in his dream. "I have psychic dreams," he said with a casual wave of his hand. "So, someday . . . "

Of course, you guys know I've had dreams that turned up in the news, later on, right? So, now I know just how weird that sounds.

Bookwise: I've meant to do a massive books-read post, but haven't gotten around to it. And, I was having rather a crap reading week. So, today, I decided to just spend some extra time on the futon and I managed to finish a book that never even made it into my sidebar: Time Windows by Kathryn Reiss. This one's a big thumbs-up for folks who like time travel and young adult books. Time Windows is the story of an 8th grader, Miranda, who moves from a New York City apartment to a sprawling, 150-year-old house in New Hampshire and discovers that she can see into the past when she looks through the windows of a dollhouse (an exact replica of the house she's living in). As Miranda watches scenes from the house's dark past, she realizes that the same events are being replayed through the women who inhabit the house - including her mother.

Time Windows would have been a great choice for the Readers Imbibing Peril Challenge and was perfect for a light, but suspenseful morning of reading.

I've just begun reading an ARC from Simon & Schuster: Leftovers by Laura Weiss. I'm finding it a tad annoying, so far. We'll see. Still also reading Night Train and plan to get back to The Worst Noel, which started out funny and turned toward depressing, so I've set it aside.

Off to bed I go. Hope everyone had a terrific week!


  1. Happy Birthday to your son! That is exciting that he gets excited by a box of books for his birthday.

    I've had a few premonition dreams myself. They are weird. And people do think you are crazy. Better to be crazy and happy though I say :D

  2. Nikki,

    Thanks! I'll tell kiddo belated happy birthday, when he wakes up. It's 11am and he's still snoring away. Both my kids love books, but the youngest is a total addict. I love it.

    Isn't it funny how completely different it feels to *hear* someone say they have dreams that come true than to *experience* it? I thought, "Wow, he sounds like a nut." Realizing, of course, that people have probably said the same thing about me. I personally think they're a gift. But, I'd like it if I knew what they meant before it hit the news. Sometimes, they do seem kind of useless.

  3. Happy Birthday to the Kiddo! A box of books is indeed the best gifts that one could hope for...well, at least some of us feel that way!

    I haven't felt much like posting either lately, so don't feel bad. Life just gets in the way of wahoos lately, doesn't it? I seriously doubt that your wahoo is broken! It's just hiding underneath a bunch of stress right now, but I think it still managed to peek it's way out in this post whether you knew it or not ;)

    Congrats to the Eldest! That's a huge accomplishment! I hope he doesn't get sucked into debt. A credit card can be a good thing if used wisely, but it can be a horrible thing if used like I used mine. I got myself into a horrible debt situation after my first credit cards and lord knows if I'll ever get out! But I do still have excellent credit, so that's something good that came out of it, I built credit!

    I've added Time Windows to my wishlist. That sounds like a great book! I know I'd enjoy it and the premise sounds neat. I love that cover for some reason. It reminds me of something but I can't think of what it is...

    Anyway, Good to see you posting again :)

  4. Chris,

    Kiddo says thanks for the birthday wishes. I'm very proud to say he's a serious bookaholic. :)

    I noticed you haven't posted. Yeah, I think you're right - stress can hide the old wahoos (and the ability to write). I think we're both there, at the moment.

    Debt is so easy to get into, these days, and Eldest didn't even bother to balance his checkbook when he had very few expenses, so I'm concerned. But, there's not a thing I can do besides offering advice. Only he can make the right or wrong decisions. Fingers are crossed he's careful. And, thanks for the congrats.

    I think you'd really like Time Windows. Did I mention that I got it at Bookcloseouts? Ooooh, dangerous comment. :) I thought the same thing about the cover. I'm not sure what it reminds me of, but it looks vaguely familiar.

    Thanks, it's good to be back. I may be a little more quiet, even when I'm here, but I'm happy to be able to sit right down and pop up internet windows. I love DSL.

  5. Sixteen! Hope the rest of the birthday turned out to be as good as a box of books (hard to beat that)!

    My brother used to have premonition dreams frequently as an adolescent. If he still has them he has long since quit mentioning them, but they were really strange, not the kind of thing that would have been anticipated.

    I've had a series of rather poor excuses for reading lately, but I think I've turned the corner on that cycle for a while.

  6. A big Happy Birthday to the boy! With my birthday in January, I feel the pain of anyone with a birthday so close to Christmas. My parents always used that excuse, "but we already spent this much for Christmas."

    I didn't even know Burger King HAD internet connection/wireless access. That's just crazy!!

  7. Jenclair,

    Yes, my baby is 16!! I can't believe it. Where did the time go? I think he really enjoyed all of his birthday gifts, but he's definitely my boy - loved the books and told me I had great taste.

    I think it gets easier for people to ignore their premonitions, with age - maybe that's what your brother has done. Or, he could have just realized how nutty they sound and become quiet. LOL I normally don't share mine with many people (and they already know I'm crazy).

    Hope you have turned that corner. It gets frustrating, after a while.


    Thank you. I'm sorry you have a January birthday. It's so easy for people to just blow off birthdays that are close to Christmas. We try to make both days special for our kiddo.

    I don't know if all Burger Kings have wireless or just some of them, but I was happy to find *anything* after 3 days without a connection. There was a Starbucks inside a grocery store they never had a decent signal. Very disappointing.
    I would have preferred to have a mocha over a coke, but whatever works.

  8. The kiddo is a gem, no two ways about it, what with his book loving and everything else.

    Congrats on getting the eldest out of school completely. It's an accomplishment and don't kid yourself about not having anything to do with it. Parents have a lot to do with things like that.

    Take your time getting back into things here. December is seriously crazy without everything else tossed in.


  9. CJ,

    Thanks, I think so, too. Both my kids are booklovers, actually (although the youngest is more of an addict). :)

    And, thank you. I feel terrific about getting one kid all the way through college. It's a definite wahoo and warm fuzzy (and, hopefully, it will really help the bank account). Come to think of it, we did have to work pretty hard. All that nagging about homework. Still going through that with the youngest.

    December's a nice kind of crazy, I think. I don't care for the crowds, but I love the smell of pine trees and all the shiny, glittery things. I'd take some of that snow off your hands, too. We have the air conditioner on. Can you believe that? So weird.

  10. A box of books always makes a great gift from one bookwork to another. Ooh...the credit card. I guess it's part of the rite of growing up, like buying a car and getting your own apartment. Don't worry too much - Christmas is just around the corner with all its craziness and fun. Looking forward to your next Wahoo!

  11. Oh no, the credit card is definitely a Stupid Trick as you certainly got me into trouble. This book Time Windows sounds really interesting, I'm going to look into that. Hope your Wahoo comes back soon, I know how you feel.

  12. I forgot your son has a birthday in December. Happy belated to him. My kiddo turns 24 tomorrow!

    I'll keep fingers crossed that your eldest doesn't abuse the credit card. Been there, done that (with our youngest). Very heavy sigh. Maybe someday she'll pay us back?

    You've had your AC on????!!! It's a whopping 15 degrees here with about 5 inches of snow on the ground. Remind me why I live in Nebraska?? ;)

  13. It has been a long month. Take some good ole time for yourself and don't worry about posting until you wanna. I go through those spurts when I don't feel like it, and most of the time its in the middle of stress (midterms, etc.). And I'm sending wishes that eldest behaves himself with the credit card. I'm paying mine down from having to use it so much in college. Arrg!

  14. Bookfool -

    Nagging is a good thing. You and my sister, with my two nieces, are the type of parents every kid should be lucky enough to have, in my opinion. You nag, you demand, you set the bar high and as a result, your kids become decent, loving, productive members of society.

    Okay, enough of that.

    I'd love to send y'all some of the snow. It's too soon to have this much! Today is beautiful, however. Sunny, blue skies, decent temps (20's) but no air conditioning up here.


  15. Actually, getting a credit card early is a really good idea (as long as he doesn't abuse it, obviously). If you don't get one quickly and start building up that credit history, even if you almost never use the card, it can be hard to get one later. I didn't bother with a credit card in college, and because of that lack of credit history had a tough time getting one a couple of years later. Because of that I had to start with one of those dreaded department store cards until I'd built up enough history to get something better.

    And, the sooner he learns good credit habits, the better they're likely to stick. :)

    Happy birthday to the birthday kid!

  16. Don't you love hearing something really weird and realize that you've said the same thing? But it happens!

    That Undercover Cat dustjacket is tres cool. It must be heck of old.

    Time Windows.. I forgot to add it, but I did pick up a copy of House on the Strand finally. Hard to find.

  17. Indigo,

    I'm fortunate - I managed to turn both of my kids into booklovers and one into an addict. It makes gift-giving easier. :)

    I just finally bought Christmas cards, today, speaking of Christmas craziness. I'll probably get them sent out by July of 2008. That would actually be an improvement, sad to say!


    Sorry the credit card thing got you. I think they're dangerous, myself. Hubby and I got one, when he got his first job, but we've always been careful to pay off the entire balance and usually use it mostly for buying gas to save time at the pumps. Eldest doesn't bother to balance his checkbook, so I think a credit card is a bad, bad idea for him. We grilled him about how much he's already charged and he was pretty cagey.

    Time Windows was great. I think I'm going to put my wahoos on hold for another couple of weeks. We'll see. :)


    Thanks and Happy Belated birthday to Amy! 24! She's just a little older than Daniel!

    A credit card is a very, very bad idea for Daniel. He'll just have to dig himself out, though, if he gets into debt. I'm not going there. We did loan him money to get started, since his employer pays for him to move, but not till the day he starts working - and he had no savings left. That's a hint about his attitude toward money. He can't seem to save a dime.

    Yeah, air conditioning. Hard to believe, isn't it? And, did you notice I got out of Oklahoma just in the nick of time? Of course, I'll have to go back, soon, but maybe the ice will have melted. There are times it's not so bad to have the A/C on in December, if an ice storm is the alternative!

  18. Andi,

    Yep, stress does it. I'll probably post in fits and starts, for the next 6 months. And, then I'm hoping to go back to school. 2008 could be interesting.

    Thanks for the wishes for eldest. We quizzed him about how much he'd already put on his credit card and he obviously didn't want to admit the dollar amount. I wanted to kick him in the shins. He told me a friend said he needed a credit card "for emergencies". I said, "Babe, you've said that same thing about friends giving you advice for as long as I can remember. What you're not considering is the fact that your father and I have been around a lot longer than your friends. Think about it." That got an interesting expression. LOL


    That's a really nice way to put it. I like to think of it as "guiding" my kids. You have to set them on the right path in the first place or they just get lost. So to speak. Getting metaphorical, here. :)

    I get kind of tired of sweating, but since I read about the ice storm in Oklahoma, I'm thinking . . . okay, air conditioning is better. I do love snow, though. Maybe someday I'll live in a place that gets snow, again. I guess I'll get plenty of cold, this winter, so I should enjoy the warmth while I've got it!


    Thanks for the birthday wishes for kiddo.

    As to the credit card thing - it's a good idea to build a credit rating, yes, but my eldest has never, ever kept himself within a budget. I think he needs to learn how to balance a checkbook, first, but it's a bit late for that. We'll see what happens! Hopefully, he won't go overboard. This is actually the fourth time he's gotten a credit card. We made him chop up and cancel the other ones, but he was still a student and we were paying his living expenses.


    I know, it's a major freakout.

    I think the book was a 1960's copy. Old enough to look cool. LOL

    Oh, good, glad you found a copy of The House on the Strand. Yeah, it's odd how difficult her books are to find. A few years back, a bunch of du Maurier titles were republished, but now they're out of print . . . again. Darn.

  19. The time travelling book reminds me of one my favourite books when I was younger: The Switching Well. These two girls in San Antonio accidently switch places at a well (one in the late 1800s, one in the late 1900s) and have to figure out how to get back. I really enjoyed it. :)

    And since I don't feel like commenting more than once, your Hawaii trip sounded like just what you needed! Good luck with the DSL mission; the internet in my house has been quite faithless later.

  20. Eva,

    I'll have to add that one to my wish list, although I'm about to attempt to not buy a single book in 2008. Think I'll last? I'm guessing maybe 2 months, tops, but we'll see.

    Hawaii was great!!! Yeah, I kinda needed that break.

    We were just a missing driver on the computer - the modem was working fine - so the internet thing *should* be a quick fix. If not, we'll probably just look for an inexpensive new computer for my mom. She needed a better computer, anyway.

    I often only comment at one post, no worries. It can eat the whole day if you comment on everything. :)


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