Skrip - tyur' - i - ent: adj. Possessing the violent desire to write.


#273 In which our hero writes his yearly letter to his dead father.

Dear Dad,

Yesterday was Father’s Day. The Scientist had to work, and I had a bunch of stuff to do around the house, so it wasn’t exactly the most festive Father’s Day ever… but I did spend a bunch of time hanging out with the girls.

I am sometimes amazed at how much of me I see in them. Lily looks like me, so there’s no denying parentage there. But more so, she acts like me. She’s timid around strangers, until she warms up to them. She’s sometimes nervous to try new things, and frets about how things will happen, who will be there, if anyone will talk to her, and so on. She’s quick to feel wronged, and have her feelings hurt. She’s emotional and sensitive.

All like me.

Macey acts like me, too, but in a completely different way. She’s pig-headed and quick to anger. She’s more likely to lash out then cry when wronged. She likes to get her own way, and woe be to the person in her way.

This is kinda like me, too. Maybe more like her mother, though.

So it had me thinking of how I’m like you. I know there’s a physical resemblance, because people have remarked on it. I am balding now, just like you did. But more than looks, I think I act like you.

I remember how much you hated unexpected delays and hassles. And how quick you were to get angry about them. I’m like that, too; even though I’ve made a concerted effort to be more mellow, to try to just go with the flow and not let it ruin the day. I’ve been somewhat successful in that endeavor.

But on a more positive note, I have your sense of humor. I’ve always been the “funny friend,” which is a blessing and a curse, I suppose. But I laugh a lot, and the fact that my wife can make me laugh—HARD—is proof positive that I’ve married the right woman.

Mom sometimes slips and calls me “Ted,” which means she sees you in me as well. You’ve shaped me in ways that I can’t even imagine. And if I ever have cause to doubt that, I need only look at my watch.

I wear my watch with the strap on the top of my wrist, and the numerals facing down. I’ve never really given it much thought as to why, this is just how I wear my watch. To me it’s just like the fact that I wash my left armpit in the shower before my right… it’s not a conscious decision I’ve made, it’s just something I do, and have always done.

However… this isn’t really the case. I recently came across a newspaper clipping from when I had won some sort of drawing contest when I was 10. In it, there’s a photo of me holding the winning drawing, and you can clearly see my watch. It’s an oversized black plastic deal with, God help me, a built-in calculator. But I’m wearing it with the face on the top of my wrist, like almost everyone does.

You always wore you watch “upside down,” like I do now. I remember asking you about it once, and you told me that you did that because in college you didn’t want to be constantly reminded of the time, so you flipped your watch around so you couldn’t see it as easily.

I’ve also had people tell me that this is a workman’s way of wearing a watch; presumably so the breakable bits were further away from harm for those who work with their hands all day. I guess you could say that I work with my hands, if typing counts. Actually, my watch face is more scratched up from clinking on the wrist rest then it would be if I wore my watch the “normal” way.

I look at 10-year-old me and see that I did make a decision about my watch at some point. And that decision was to wear my watch like my dad did. Just one more way that I’m like you.

And I wonder what little things the girls will pick up from me. The way they brush their teeth? Tie their shoes? Ride a bike? I hope I can continue to be a mostly good example to them. Like you were for me. I miss you, dad.

Your son,



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#272 In which our hero receives a message from the past.

I’ve previously mentioned this cool website,, in which you can send messages to yourself in the “future,” that is, these messages are stored somewhere and not delivered until the future date you set.

I had sent future-me a message at one point, but I forgot how long I set it to wait. Every once in a while this website would bubble up to the surface of my mind and I’d wonder if that message would ever come. But it had been so long I assumed the service just didn’t work.

But I got my past message yesterday!

I had completely forgotten what I had written, and it was really funny to (re)read. Message follows with commentary.
Hello Future Craig!

It is June 10, 2004 as I write this. The kinda cool website says it will send this to you any time in the future... I'm going to set it for five years. I wonder what'll be different by then.

Right now, Lily is only seven months old. Just in the past week has she started to really crawl, she can get around now! By the time you read this she should be walking and talking (something she can't do at all now), and will be even more a real little person. I hope to God she finally grew some hair.
Wow, it’s amazing how little I knew about kids then. I though she’d be walking and talking at age 5? Holy crap, this kid can run like a demon. And talk? She spins these amazingly elaborate tales that never fail to surprise and delight me. She’s so much more of a real person at age 5 that I could ever of imagined.

And it’s hard to remember that it took Lily so long to grow hair. Now she has thick, luxurious red hair halfway down her back.
You're working at ADPRO right now... it's not terrible.
Well, it certainly got terrible. This would have been my first year there, and it was, as reported, okay. Not terrible, not wonderful. That would come later. As an aside, I’m going to censor some of the names that follow, but I don’t have to obscure the agency name since it went out of business less than a year after firing me. No real surprise there… it was struggling financing well before I started working there.
Your boss is XXXX XXXXXXX, who isn't a horrible boss, but he's clearly out to cover his own ass first, and screw everyone else. At the beginning of the month you were turned down for a raise, even though XXXX (says he) wanted to give you one. You're still more than a little bitter about that.
This was the first sign that ADPRO was not a healthy place to work. My boss outright lied about compensation, making it sound like it was likely that I would get a raise at 6 months, 12 months, 18 months… while the truth was that no one in the agency had received a bump in compensation in YEARS. So yeah, I was bitter… and still am. This is alleviated somewhat by the information I received a while back that my former boss is now working for an extremely small shop (like 5 people) and the two principals work him into the ground and don’t appreciate his work. This may or may not be true, but I choose to believe that he’s getting a taste of his own medicine now.
You work with XXXX XXXXXXX and XXXXX XXXXXXXX, graphic designers.
The first of which was fired four months before me, the second of which quit several months after me. I’m not in touch with either any more.
AE XXXX XXXXX is one of the bigger assholes you've ever had to work with.
Man, that was the truth. In a weird twist of fate, this guy came in to interview at my current agency. I really wanted to run to the general manager and torpedo any chance he had to actually getting hired… but I didn’t. I guess I believe that what comes around goes around, and I’m not willing to roll those dice. Man that guy was a dick. He wasn’t hired here anyway.
You and [The Scientist] and just starting to pack up the house in preparation to moving. Actually, [The Scientist] has started, and you're dragging your feet because you fucking hate moving. I hope you guys found a nice house... bigger, nicer room for Lily, bigger kitchen, PLEASE.
This must have been when we were just moving stuff into a storage area to de-clutter it and make it feel bigger. We ended up selling our house much quicker than expected, and had to scramble a bit to find a new one. Which we did in short order. But not without first having to deal with a bunch of bullshit which is chronicled here.
And a bedroom for Lily's new brother or sister? S/he should be born by now, huh? Wonder how that went. Another C-section for [The Scientist]? I hope it was less stressful for you guys this time.
Let me do the math. This was sent June 10, 2004. Macey was born June 9, 2005. So, The Scientist wasn’t even pregnant yet, by a couple of months. I don’t really remember this, but The Scientist and I must have planned when we were going to try for #2 pretty carefully.
[The Scientist] just started the job at XXXXXXXX. Knowing her, she'll be at this job for 10 years. I hope she still likes it... after hating her job for so long, she deserves one that she likes at least a little.
She still likes it. So, yah!
You're still driving the Neon. I really hope by the time you read this that you have a new car.
Ah, my old red Neon. How I loved that car. I really wanted to get another manual, but The Scientist insisted that I get an automatic. Which has worked out for the best, I suppose. But I miss that zippy little 5-speed.
You love your wife very much. Looks like[REDACTED].
This section detailed some personal stuff that my wife and I had to work through which you--nameless, faceless Internet--need not know about. Suffice it to say that we did indeed work it out.
Man, she's one hot piece of ass.
That sentiment is no less true now than it was five years ago.
Hope all is well with you and yours,

craig, circa 2004.

The Scientist thinks I should write another one. If I set if for another five years, that would make Lily 10 and Macey 9. I can’t even imagine what those kids will be like then. And The Scientist and I will have been married 13 years.

Here’s hoping that her ass remains as hot as it is now.


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