Orville’s on the fritz

Yeah, so this afternoon Orville failed to restart after a Windows update, by which I mean the screens are both black, the keyboard doesn’t seem to be working either, and I can’t even get a restart in Safe Mode.

I can’t think of anything else to do but drag him to the shop tomorrow. Perhaps nothing in particular is wrong. Perhaps Orville is just sulking and they can fix him in a jiffy, or perhaps it will be an intensive and expensive repair. I have no idea; computers mystify me.

It costs $50 for them to even look at it, and things go up from there. Money will be tight this month anyway, as my car insurance is due. Any donations towards the cost of the repair will be appreciated.

Stupid plugins

So yesterday I was in the middle of updating when the plugins (I’m not even sure what those are) decided they didn’t like me anymore, and made it impossible to get anything done. I had to beg my designer Preston Winfrey for help and then he had to figure out what was going on and get the stupid plugins to work again.

Right around the time things got back to normal, Michael and our friend Larissa dragged me to Texas Roadhouse. The food there is all right but I am NEVER going there on a Friday night again. The noise was absolutely unbearable, particularly after the line dancing started. Crowded restaurants are not the greatest environment for an autistic person.

The conversation was about Michael and Larissa’s role-playing game, which I do not play. I barely said a word the entire time and mostly sat there stimming. Michael kept telling me to go to the bathroom if I needed a break from the noise, but I was afraid that if I did so, I wouldn’t be able to make myself come back to the table.

What a night.

The Missouri Highway Patrol has a bunch of new cases up and I’m going to try to add the rest today. Plugins permitting.

General update on things

So the day before yesterday I discovered Dark Matters on YouTube. You can thank Caleigh Elise for most of the updates I did yesterday. Her video summaries of unsolved murders and missing persons cases and unidentified remains are in depth, well-researched and professionally done. From her research I discovered some factual errors on a few of my cases and corrected them.

Preston Winfrey, my designer, has fixed the drop-down search results on the general search (bad plugin update apparently) so the bar no longer goes blank and stops working if you scroll down. He has also improved the advanced search, fixing a bug that wouldn’t let you search multiple phrases.

Yesterday I got a shocking response from a woman whose sister was on my site. She sent me messages through email and Facebook and we spoke over Facebook messenger. She said I had no right to post about the MP, I had no permission from my family, and everything I had posted was “such baloney.”

I explained who I was and what the Charley Project is and asked what corrections needed to be made. She said the MP was reported missing by her husband; I had had it as her brother. Okay, I said, I will fix that (and did so), what else?

Well, I asked several times but she never said there was any other incorrect information, just kept yelling at me, saying their mom was very upset by seeing the casefile and it was against the law for me to write about missing persons without permission from the family. I told her this was not true.

I do not know what was bothering her, because besides that quite minor error there was absolutely nothing objectionable in the MP’s casefile, nothing that could be construed as remotely critical or judgmental or intrusive. I don’t think the woman’s anger or her mother’s distress had anything to do with me really.

I know I have written and spoken about this kind of reaction several times but it doesn’t happen often at all; most relatives who reach out to me are polite and respectful and appreciate my efforts. I got a really nice email from Morgan Nick‘s mom last month. It’s just that whenever I do get family members who claim I did something wrong or hurtful it’s upsetting to me. But some people just react differently and they are in a bad situation so I try not to take it personally.

Shrug.

I’m doing pretty well right now and everyone’s fine where I’m at: Michael, cats, dogs. Kinsey’s fifteenth birthday was earlier this week and we had her wear a party hat and gave her an Arby’s roast beef sandwich as we sang the birthday song.

When your source is Facebook

More and more often I find myself turning to Facebook for information about my cases. It’s amazing the kind of stuff you can find on there. Mostly, as I’ve said, I use it for photographs. But I can find other information about a missing person on Facebook. And my list of missing persons Facebook pages now stands at 650 links.

Sometimes, though, I’m not really sure how to cite my source when I do find something. For instance, the other day I found a photo of a missing guy on Facebook, and some additional information about him, such as the fact that he was an alcoholic and attended AA meetings. This was the only photo of him that I could find anywhere.

The person who put it on Facebook was, apparently, an acquaintance of the MP’s daughter, not someone close to the MP; in fact I’m not sure she even knew him at all. And she had made that post years ago. If I listed her Facebook page as a source she might not like that, her page being linked to an alcoholic missing person. She might not even remember her post from way back when.

So I wasn’t really sure what to do with that.

And here’s another question: if you are researching an MP and find she’s had a slew of arrests driving under the influence and public intoxication, several times a year for quite a few years up until her disappearance, should you list the MP as an alcoholic even though no one has outright said it?

If I was in charge of how missing persons casefiles were written everywhere

For clarity’s sake I hereby announce the following rules, effective immediately:

  1. For the purpose of missing person descriptions, the hair color “auburn” no longer exists. All MPs’ hair that was once listed as auburn shall now be classified as either brown or red.
  2. Similarly, the hair color “sandy” shall also be discarded and replaced by brown, blonde or red, depending on the shade.
  3. Tattoos, scars etc., shall not be said to be on the shoulder unless they are draped over the top of the shoulder like a strap. Instead they shall be listed as either on the back or on the upper arm, depending on exact placement of said mark.