...to freeze one's ass off, buy a Vornado room-heater from Bed, Bath & Beyond, and survive the winter.
On the other hand, I've been doing lots around my place and the City, here'n'there-style. I've also been doing a lot of writing on one or two fiction (non-blog) things. A good chunk of the inspiration, aside from Kaia asking when she can finally read my stuff, is the show Futureweapons on Discovery. Hosted by former Navy SEAL Richard Machowicz, Futureweapons cutting-edge military weaponry, from grenade launchers, missile systems and advanced, semi-automatic sniper rifles to bulletproof material, infrared illumination systems and unmanned attack copters. It's a little over the top -- it's as thick with military lingo as it is plain English -- but it's mostly very entertaining and really thought-provoking. Mack, as Machowicz is known, demonstrated a multi-barrelled grenade launcher that can fire an infrared grenade that can bathe a battlefield with -- you guessed it -- infrared light. That means if one army is advancing at night -- quietly -- then one of those grenades can enable the advancing army to see -- with IR/night-vision equipment -- what's out there with the enemy not even seeing the light, so to speak. It's a lot cooler onscreen, so when/if you get a chance, look it up -- it's a pisser. It's like taking James Bond goodies and placing them in the hands of a real-world soldier to test and demonstrate, and for my money, every episode features something worthwhile (if not mind-blowing).
Beyond that, essentially, I've just been keeping my place organized for Kaia's impending return (in either February, if we have time, or mid/late March for my birthday and the upcoming party-fest in midtown. The friend with whom I'm planning/throwing the party is so busy with work he hasn't been able to see his girlfriend for about ten days, and I semi-seriously told him that's not that bad (they live 90 minutes apart). I explained that Kaia and I get to see each other every six or so weeks, and while we spend a lot of time on the phone during the day and well into the night -- usually falling asleep with one another on the phone -- I understand his frustration. It's just that I can't feel sorry for him -- being 3,000 miles away from someone whose presence you crave has essentially sapped my sympathy for anyone who can see his/her other half but doesn't. Time constraints, schedules, homework -- all that bullshit is an excuse I wish I could contemplate. I guess we'll wait until Kaia's a full-fledged New Yorker -- then I'll see, first-hand, how often I can't spend time with her or be thankful for the opportunity.
Without sounding self-indulgent, I have a feeling that, having spent the last 26 (holy shit) months only wanting to spend time with her, I'll appreciate not having to pick up the phone to whisper sweet nothings in her ear. And while I, of course, understand what my friend and others like him are going through, I guess waiting for she and I to be behind the same front door is akin to Steve Miller's ode to air travel: "You've got to go through hell before you get to heaven."
Amen, brother. Amen.