Alex Camacho
Crosby, TX, United States
Born in Houston, Texas and raised all over living the life of an Army Brat. I Went to eight different schools (three elementary, one middle school, four high schools) and have one little brother who’s not so little anymore. I’ve been married for nearly fourteen years now to a woman who rocks my world and I've been blessed with two wonderful children. Our dog, Sally, is a big black lab saved from a local shelter.

Friday, December 31, 2004

New Year's Eve

It's New Year's Eve already. I had no idea it was today until my brother called and asked what I was doing. We were invited out to Anthony and Liz's New Year's Eve party but we're not going to be able to make it out there.

Around the house, I got way too much shit to do. Laundry needs to be folded, put away, living room needs cleaning, kitchen is a mess, and I got the Mame system calling my name from the big screen tv. Yep, I finally hooked it up. Micah came by the other night, installed it all, configured a few things, showed me how to install new stuff, and I plugged it in last night. It still needs some tweaking out (NES and SNES games need fixing) but other than that, it's great. I was up until five thirty this morning playing Mortal Kombat II with Marcel and Lana. Man, that game brings back some memories. I can't wait until the NES and SNES games are running right so I can play some Super Spike V'Ball. I played a little on the computer before I moved it down but it just ain't the same.

Speaking of computers, I switched to Mozilla for my browser finally. I had been meaning to switch over but I never got around to it. When my computer needed reformatting I decided it was time. I like it. Only thing I didn't like was when I opened up my own website for the first time in it looking for a link to show Micah. My website looked like crap in Mozilla. Nothing was in the right spot. Why didn't you Mozilla-using fuckers tell me my site looked screwed up in it?? Anyway, while Micah was "test running" some of the Mame games, I was rewriting my website to be Mozilla and IE friendly. Only thing left now is to fix this page. I'll get around to it eventually. Maybe that should be my New Year's resolution. Stop procrastinating so much. Maybe not though. I like to think that the things I don't get around to right away aren't all that important as say, spending time with my kiddo whooping up on him in Mortal Kombat or showing him where the secret level is on Zelda. Priorities. Although I would like to have clean clothes to wear...

I'll probably just bring the clean clothes to the bedroom and dig some clothes out. Compromise. That's good too.

It's been a great year. I only wish I had taken more pictures. ;)

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Being Sick Sucks

This year, it looks like I took the bullet for Marcel. Every year, without fail, Marcel gets sick around Christmas. His first few Christmas mornings he spent in miserable joy trying to muster up the strength to open presents. I guess it was my turn. I've been pretty miserable the past few days. Headache, sore throat, congestion, the works. Today I'm feeling a little better but can't help but be in a bear sort of mood. I never really notice my moods I guess but Lana's always fast to tell me if I'm being a bit of a butthead. ;)

I think I spent most of yesterday with a fever shivering my ass off wrapped up in a blanket. I buried myself in my Lovesac and dozed in and out watching the Richard Pryor - I Ain't Dead Yet, #*%$#@!! I'm not sure how much of it I watched so I'm hoping to catch it when my brain isn't toasting.

In other news though, I did manage to get the soon-to-be Mame machine up and running yesterday before I got too toasty. Meanwhile though, I managed to catch a nasty computer virus or something on my main computer searching for ROMs. I couldn't access online at all (no DNS being assigned??) and my cd-ROMs stopped working. Even Johnny didn't know what was going on so the only thing left to do was reformat. So I backed everything up, and wiped the whole damn thing. I'm still reinstalling stuff. It could have been worse I guess.

I'm feeling well enough today to bitch so I can't be too bad off. Lana wanted me to go to the doctor but I don't think I really need to go. I should be fine with some more NyQuil and DayQuil to get me through tomorrow. I'm off to the house...


Monday, December 27, 2004

A Super Christmas

Another Christmas gone. This was probably our best Christmas and not just financially speaking. We're in a good place in a lot of ways. Marcel had a great Christmas I think and so did I. I finally found out what that big thing lurking under the tree with my name on it was. The package was so huge Lana had to lean it against one of my bookshelves in fear it would knock over the Christmas tree. I tried messing with it once but decided it was too damn heavy. Turns out my baby got me a Super Lovesac!! I've been wanting one every since I first heard about the company but never could muster up the nerve to pop down the money for it. It's so comfy. I go comatose in it if I stay in it too long. I've tried watching a few movies in it but can't help but drift off everytime.

I had no idea what to get Lana this year. I drove out to the mall on a mission, determined to get something for her that just said BUY ME FOR LANA. After an hour of wandering with no inspiration, I reset my determination and made another lap. An hour later desperation was creeping in. I decided to call in the calvary. When she picked up the phone she said something to the effect, "I know why you're calling and I haven't a clue what to get her either. You're on your own." Thanks Kelly. So I began wondering the department stores. That's pretty much when I remembered she had been wanting a leather coat. I threw in a nice pair of diamond earrings to boot. She's so damn hard to shop for. I don't think I did any harm and that's always good. I really wanted to wow her with something but what I found was waay out of budget range. Maybe next year. ;)

Marcel got the usual slew of action figures (this year it's Star Wars), bionicles, r/c stuff, plus a Robosapian. While not an incredibly impressive toy for an adult considering how much Santa paid for it, it entertains the kids for hours since it burps, farts, and wolf whistles on command. Hey, he dances too.

To top it all off, it snowed on Christmas. Not the great white fallouts Mike and me grew up knowing, but it did bring back some really great memories. Mike called me that day to tell me he had snow on his lawn. We talked about the snow fights we had, the snow forts and the fun we had just playing together. Hell, we've played in a blizzard once. Our mom drove up, yanked us out of the four feet deep snow by our necks threatening our lives as she threw us in the back of the car and rushed us home to hot cocoa and warm blankets. We didn't see her until she was literally right on top of us it was snowing so bad. I've really got to crawl up in my dad's attic and pull down our old toys. I'm willing to bet our old snow suits and sleds are buried up there with who knows how many other memories. One of these days one of us is going to get the nerve up for that climb.

Man, I miss having my dad around for Christmas but I'm happy for him. This year Lana had her family over for Christmas Eve dinner. I invited my brother over too but he and Xiomaria have been under the weather the past week. I still have presents for his kiddos since they didn't make in on Christmas. Maybe they'll make it next year. Anyway. I probably ought to get off here. I promised Marcel we'd go to the park last night and fly his new r/c plane he got from Santa. It came with instructions, five extra props, and glue for repairing broken wings. If only everything in life did right? A trip to radio shack first though. Unfortunately, it didn't come with an extra antennae. Marcel told me under a fit of tears that one of the kids broke it and he'd have to throw it away. It was one of those I'm-An-Adult moments and I relished it. It's not everyday you can save the day. :)

Sunday, December 19, 2004

A Birthday Surprise

Another birthday bites the dust. I'm twenty three for the fifth time. ;)

Turns out my woman decided to have friends over but was having a hard time getting me out the house to prepare. I wasn't in an "outside" type of mood and just wanted to bump around the house so I ignored my cell phone other than my dad and brother. I was planning on a nice quiet evening and Lana surprised me by letting the cat out of the bag that she had a little party planned for me. I'm surprised she managed to keep it in the bag as long as she did.

It was a pleasant surprise and I had waaaay more to drink than I should have. The last time I got that drunk I ended up with bald legs, an I.V. line in my living room, and the worst hangover ever. Gina saved me from a roaring hangover this time I think. Every time I reached for a drink she'd had me a glass of water. Some sober part of me knew I needed to drink water and try to sober up but the other part of me was roving for another shot. Once I stopped drinking it was a battle to stay awake. I vaguely remember talking to Abbey on the phone but I have no idea what I said. The last thing I really remember was being tucked into bed by Abbey. There are other flashes of memories I'm beginning to remember but that's not for here. I slept like a rock until my stomach revolted around six. I'll spare all of you the details but by noon I was feeling human and happy.

All in all, I had a great time and I'm grateful to have such great friends. None of them wrote on me, painted on me or took compromising pictures of me while I was passed out. It's nice to have a circle of friends you can get wasted around without worry.

Meanwhile, not a lot has been going on other than Lana and me devouring season one of Carnivale. My brother called dibs on it as soon as he saw it since he was as addicted to it as we were. Season two is supposed to start in ninth of January.

I'm hoping to get in bed early tonight being that I have Christmas shopping to jump on still. I hate fighting the malls, traffic and customer service, but then I did wait until the very last minute yet again.

I think I'll read and call it. :)


Thursday, December 16, 2004


I finally got around to fixing the shower so we now have water pressure! I made the access hole bigger and tore the old plumbing out and wrestled the new one in. With crossed fingers, I tested for leaks. There were a few but nothing I can't fix tomorrow. Everyone else was talking about jumping in before me, but I called dibs on that shit. He who fixith... If it's not in the bible somewhere, it should be.
It's the simple stuff that brings great pleasure. ;)

I'm hoping to make it out to Fry's this weekend and get a new motherboard for Lana's old computer and grab some cheap controllers for the MAME system. I'm pretty excited about having it hooked up. The NES-Mini ITX conversion is on a back burner, but I'm sure I'll eventually get around to it. I still need to do the rest of my Christmas shopping but I don't plan on doing any tomorrow it being my birthday and all. I have no idea what I'm doing yet, but I wanna do something. It kind of snuck up on me this year. When did birthdays stop having such a big impact on our lives??

I think tonight I'm going to finish assembling my first unit of Clanrat Slaves, fold some laundry, and catch up on some Law & Order. I should try getting to bed tonight before the sun comes up. These hours are killing me. I'm in bed no earlier than four a.m. these days. Anyway. I'm off to the store I think. I've got a craving for ice cream and a coke.

Wednesday, December 15, 2004


The new cat, Magnus (a.k.a. Juice), seems to be adjusting to his new home and position as Office Cat. I don't see him much, but I'm not up in Lana's office much. With Lana, Dosha and Johnny puffing away at their computers I can feel a headache build up before too long. The office has what Lana calls "the pool hall smell." I prefer the smell of super glue, Bondo, and melting foam. ;)

I began construction on my Warhammer army. I'm going with Skavan as my first army. They seem like a pretty flexible army. My only beef with the game is that the mini's cost so damn much, so I've been sticking to Ebay. I'm pretty excited about making scenery though. I've already built a ruined house and have plans for a lot more. I'm hoping to have a 2150 point army constructed so I can play at Owlcon. It's good to have a new project set into motion. I seem to always need an excuse for motivation and Owlcon was the ticket for this one. That gives me around a month to collect, construct, and paint 234 miniatures. I have a deadline now...

Christmas is a blink away. Lana's done most of the Christmas shopping this year and for that I'm very thankful. I still need to go fight the malls though for her present. She's so damn hard to shop for but I think I got something picked out for her that she'll like or so I hope. She's so hard to shop for and I always feel like I'm drawing straws when I get her something. Marcel wasn't the easiest to shop for this year either but at least with him I know I can't go too wrong so long I don't bring home socks or sweaters. I love this time of year but it's always tinged with just a bit of melancholy. Christmas with my little brother, mom, and my dad. All those emotions and memories just stir to the surface. While not exactly freezing weather, the cold weather always makes me think back to when we lived in Colorado. Lots of memories. Sometimes it hits me at the oddest moment - I'm an adult and all that's in the past. I invited my little brother and his family to spend Christmas with us this year. It would be nice to have my little brother with me again on Christmas morning.

Marcel helped me clean out the chimney the other day before I lit a fire. When he saw how small the entrance was, he asked me how Santa was going to fit. It was one of those I'm-An-Adult moments and for a moment I was too acutely aware of it to respond. Here my son was, asking for me to explain how a fat man in a red suit was going to fit down a 36"x5" hole, and I hesitated. Before Lana and I had kids we debated on weather or not we'd lie to our kids on subjects like this. Is Santa real, what does the tooth fairy do with my teeth, where do babies come from, etc. You get the point. Do we deceive our child, taking advantage of their unquestioning devotion, or tell them the truth? It was a very serious debate for us at times.

People without children have no idea and never will until they have their own.

I told him Santa is magical, of course. How do you think he makes his sleigh fly? I also promised him we wouldn't light a fire on Christmas Eve.

It's pretty late and I should probably call it a night. I got a hot bowl of menudo with my name on it back at the house. Not that it needs my name on it since I'm the only one in the house who'll eat it, other than Marcel. Hell, Lana gags at the smell of it. I don't get how anyone can dismiss a food without ever having tasted it. That's fine though, more for Marcel and me. I'm rather proud that I cooked it by myself and it came out great. My stomach's grumbling just thinking about it. Off to eat! For those of you who would like to give it a whirl, here's the recipe I used.

Bertha's Menudo
  • 1 big freakin pot
  • 1 bag of LaMichoacana chili peppers (16 oz.
  • 1 whole onion
  • 1 whole garlic
  • Oregano
  • 7pds of menudo (two kind - buy the more expensive one, blanco. The cheap kind melts away during cooking)
  • salt (6 tablespoons per 8pds of meat)
  • 1 can of hominy (two if you prefer)

Clean the meat first. Bring the water to a boil. Don't put the meat in until the water is boiling otherwise it won't cook properly. Add the meat, onion, and garlic once the water has been boiling, and then bring it down to a medium heat. Stir often to avoid the meat sticking to the bottom. The meat will take 3 hours to cook. Taste the broth frequently and then remove the whole garlic and onion when you are satisfied with the flavor. Clean the peppers and remove all the seeds, and then soak them in warm, not boiling, water to soften them up. Once soft, liquify it in a blender slowly using broth straight from the cooking menudo. Add in the peppers a few at time, liquify, then add more until all are done. Once the meat is cooked, add the peppers, hominy, and oregano.

Monday, December 6, 2004

A Hefty Left Hand

Sitting at my computer, working a little on the GURPS GCB Star Wars book, I got a instant message from Ray. Back when I was in the military, I worked as an EMT on ambulances and in the emergency room. My work schedule was insane most of the time but I generally worked 7pm to 7am. Ray was one of the paramedics I rode with now and then. A cool guy to hang with, never a dull moment on those long patient transports, and a great paramedic. His nick online is Hefty Lefty since he's left handed and he uses his left hand when he - nevermind. Did I mention he has a great sense of humor?

It's been a while since I last talked to him so I was a little surprised to get a message from him. Turns out him and another friend have cooked together a really great business plan for training military medical personnel out there in Fort Campbell. He was looking for a little advice on the web end of things plus it was a great excuse to catch up. I got the latest dirt on old friends and it brought back a lot of memories of my BDU wearing days. Who got fat, who got fired, who got silicone implants. The usual work gossip that someone who doesn't work anymore would never hear.

It wasn't all that bad looking back. Yeah, I worked like a dog, but I made some good friends. We had a lot of fun and the job was rewarding. Working nightshift was nothing like working dayshift. I think some people are nightshift and others were meant to be dayshift. It's a difference in attitude. The job isn't any less a priority but the means isn't always the same. It's a much more relaxed atmosphere and for a military guy that had it's ups and downs. I was on a first name basis with everyone but we knew when to revert back to military talk. I slipped now and then but usually it wasn't that bad if you don't count that Military Prick I once called "Sarge". Turns out he really was. I miss being an EMT. Helping out on a code, setting a splint, suturing someone's head, holding down a drunk, etc. On the rare days off, we'd gather at my place and roleplay. Greg worked in the ambulance section with me, Matt worked one of the Troop Medical Clinics, John worked in Surgery, and Brit worked in the Emergency Room. You can't imagine how gruesome our ritualistic bullshit talk was before dice ever hit the table.

Turns out quiet a few guys I knew back then stayed in or got back in for various reasons. It was like I was telling Ray. Looking back, it almost feels in third person. Things that happened in the emergency room, patients we treated, small things that only coworkers are privy to, etc. It seems so foreign now like it all happened to someone else. In a lot of ways I guess it did but that's good thing. :)

I think I'm going to seriously look into getting my EMT certs back. I'm not going to be looking into full time work or even part time but it would be nice to do some ride alongs again. This time I won't have to wear BDU's.

Friday, December 3, 2004

Another Baby Tooth!

My baby lost another tooth yesterday. It was sort of my fault but I swear I didn't pull it. We were goofing off after we decorated the Christmas tree and we got rough. His first two teeth I pulled but only because Marcel refused to touch them and his adult teeth were coming in crooked. When he realized his teeth were a valuable commodity he asked me daily to pull them. Thanks to Charlie, Laura's hubby, each tooth is worth ten dollars. My tooth fairy left a dollar or two. I guess the market for teeth has gone up since I was a kid. Marcel decided he's going to hold on to his tooth and wait for more to fall out so he'll have more money. It's funny how your kids will do something in particular that just reminds you of yourself so much when you were the same age. The way they play, something they say, or just a facial expression.

Last night we finished decorating the tree. The bulbs need a little rearranging (all the kids decorated) but not much. I'm thinking of starting a fire in the fireplace tonight but I might wait for a quiet night when we can keep a closer eye on the kids. We're probably going to be roleplaying tonight and I'm not to wild about the kids in the living room with a fire. There's already been one fire made upstairs on my carpet by the kiddos. Tonight there will be anywhere from seven to nine kids running around my house. It gets pretty wild on roleplaying nights to say the least. Since it is a roleplaying night I should probably be doing other things rather than being on here.

I'm hoping to watch a few episodes of Law and Order on my Tivo but Don's been on a Stargate Marathon on my TV for the past two days. I think he can go without for a few hours while I get my fix and fold some laundry. I should eat some food too sometime today...

Wednesday, December 1, 2004

Feeling Christmas

I'm up before noon and I was in bed after four. I woke up to the sound of Don's unmistakable voice at the door. Lana and I stayed up doing our usual three episodes of Law and Order SVU before I finally convinced her it was time to go to bed.

We got our Christmas tree up! Marcel picked the tree, we got it home, I trimmed the bottom up and put it in the stand. We were running a little late on our way to Cory's birthday dinner (duck!) so we didn't get a chance to decorate. We're doing good to have the tree up before the twentieth. I was going through our boxes only to see that there were a few more casualties from the move. We lose a few bulbs every year. I'm pretty sure we don't have enough to cover even half the tree this year so I guess we'll have to get some more. I'm just hoping I can keep Lana from doing the Disco tree she's been wanting to do. I'm not really one for a traditional style tree but that might be further than I'm willing to go.

With a tree in the house now it's beginning to actually feel like Christmas. Hopefully Lana won't react too badly to the tree this year. She touches the tree as little as possible but I think the smell bothers her. She's slightly allergic to pine. I personally love the smell of a fresh Christmas tree. It brings back all those memories. Man, I miss those days. I guess that's why I insist on a real tree every year. The smell of pine, the act of trimming it together, and just all the memories associated with a real tree. I'll probably give in eventually and let Lana go plastic but something in me just twists and turns at the thought. A plastic tree just isn't right and Christmas just won't feel the same.

I think this year we're going to be doing the big Christmas dinner for Lana's family. I'm thinking of making some tamales. It's been a long time since I've had some good ones. I can no longer eat Mexican food at restaurants. I miss my mom's cooking and every time I order food at some over glorified taco bell it just tastes bad in comparison. Learning to cook is one of those things I want to get around to.

Lana might be paying Abbey to teach her and I'm thinking of jumping in.

Abbey cooked duck for Cory last night and I ate until I couldn't think of another bite, until desert of course. Lana asked Abbey if she would give her cooking lessons once a week. Dinner was great, the company was good, and we both went home with a full tummy and a smile. Tonight we decorate the tree. Man, I love this time of year. All the great memories come flooding back and I'm making new ones with my own family. I'm thinking of breaking out the photos and finally hanging some pictures in the house. I'm just in one of those really weird nostalgic moods. It's a double-edged sword especially this time of year.