Monday, June 30, 2003

Apparently a squirrel got hisself electrocuted in a power station somewhere near Bellevue, thereby knocking out the power to the Bellevue area on Saturday morning. I know you were all waiting to hear what happened.

Tampa Brian has returned from 19 days in Europe. I am very jealous of his trip and it sounds like I have a right to be. He had waaaaaaaay too much fun. Plus, he was in Europe (at the time. (Sorry, that last part's an in-joke.))

I found out that apparently I'll be recieving a statuette for the award one of the games I worked on won last weekend. That's kinda cool. I'll reserve some space on a bookshelf somewhere.

Time to go to the gym.

Sunday, June 29, 2003

It's funny, you don't update for a couple of days and people get worried. I got an email from my mom on Thursday (I think) asking me what was up, then Seth called today with a message from Glenn and Liana asking if everything was okay because I hadn't updated since the news that my company had been purchased. Honestly, I really haven't had anything exciting -- or even vaguely interesting -- to report.

Company purchased. Nothing changed. Everyone pretty much ignored the news and went back to work. A lot of people left for the Origins convention. We won a bunch of awards, which is nice, but I don't think it has much of an impact on me. It'll be good for the marketing side of things I guess...and the awards will look nice on the shelves in the front office. I was out Friday night when the ceremony was taking place and one of the guys who was at the convention called to tell me "You won!" He was much more excited than I was. The award is for the company, even if I designed the set, I certainly didn't sculpt the figures, make up the game, market it, take the orders, or ship it. Me = small part of a whole company. I did my part , we won, good for us.

For no reason whatsoever, my power was out Saturday morning. I still have no idea why, but apparently it was a problem all over Bellevue. Just a weird thing.

Saturday was actually pretty fun. I slept in, went to the gym, and picked up some comics. I'm trying to cut back on my comics, but, man, there are some good books out there right now. I didn't pick up any books for about a month, so I'm missing issue of a bunch of comics that I have to go find. Bummer. I picked up the comics and a new book for Hero System 5th Edition, the UNTIL Super Powers Database. It's very good and I recommend it to longtime fans and to gamers who don't quite get how to use the Hero System to get the most out of it.

Then I picked up Kim (Kevin, her husband, was out of town at the convention) and we went to a birthday party for one of Shana's (Shay-na) friends. It was a very relaxing, very fun time, with lots of tasty treats and even a little alcohol. And dancing. Dancing in a living room with only six other people is a little odd, but fun.

Earlier in the evening I heard a bunch of stuff by the band Soul Coughing. I don't know how I didn't hear about these guys until now. Hell, they debuted in the mid-90's and have already broken up. I hate that, but I love their music. I picked up their 'best of', Lust in Phaze today. It's a little much in one sitting, but it's fun.

Otherwise, today was laundry day -- oh, my dryer has died and will be replaced on Thursday -- so I found a place to do that. The place happened to be right next door to the Bellevue Uwajimaya. These stores are great! They're an Asian food and gift store and they have some of the goofiest imported snacks. Today I picked up some "melon"-flavored soda and another soda that I have to remember to bring in because it has some Engrish that Seth will appreciate. I picked up some grape gum that's named, clevery enough, Grape. I also grabbed some ju-ju-be type things, some little chocolate bars that are pretty darn tasy, and some chocolate burgers. Really, that last one I'll have to scan. The package is just too funny to miss. I tried to find it on the company's Website, but I couldn't find it. I did, however, really like their 8 keys to success.

This evening I went to the gym. I was pretty sore from yesterday because I switched around my workout pretty significantly and my muslces were telling me not to go too crazy. I think the alcohol I drank last night may have had something to do with it as well, but I don't want to beleive that. The repercussions could be devastating to consider.

I'm finally starting to actually get my hands dirty on my new product line and it's...complex. Much more complex than my old line, but I seem to be picking it up. It's really going to take some time and brainwork on my part. I hope I can do as well as the guy who had the line before me. I'll work on it. I better; that game just won the game of the year award at the aforementioned convention. I don't want to be the guy to screw it up.

Much like Seth, I'm now signed up on Friendster. It's an interesting idea. Basically, you set up a site with all sorts of info about you (or as much as you want to provide) and then invite friends to join (I haven't done this yet, so don't feel left out -- yet. (Actually, if you want to be invited, drop me a line.)). Your friends act as connection points to others on the list, so it's a huge interconnected net of people that are all friends of friends of friends, etc, etc. It's interesting.

Okay. Done now. Time to do some grocery shopping and go to bed.

'Til next time.

Monday, June 23, 2003

So, my company was purchased today by the sportscard and candy company, Topps.

It's a bit odd, but I think it'll be fine. They have a history of noninterference in the companies they purchase and, although they haven't purchased many, that bodes well. Actually, the fact that they don't acquire a lot of companies also strikes me as a good thing. They don't involve themselves in companies that aren't directly related to what they're familiar with. They know candy and sportscards and we know games.

Oh, something far more interesting; my good friend and ex-girlfriend, Kim, was married Sunday to someone she's been seeing for a while. He's from England and it was easier to just hurry up and get married than to apply for an "Engagement visa" and then get married. I'm very happy for them and I just wish I could have gone to the wedding.

I'm going to go eat and then go to the gym.


Sunday, June 22, 2003

The weekend was good. It started on Friday with me grilling some brats and chicken for dinner (most of which went into my refrigerator once cooked, but some went into my tummy) and then going to the gym. I stayed up way too late watching all but one epiode of Buffy, then went to bed at about 2:30.

I was up by about 7:30, watched the last episode of Buffy before showering and heading off to help Matt and Meredith move. The move went well and moving them makes me want to have less stuff. Their move was pretty darn easy because they have so much less than me. After finishing up with them we all grabbed a late lunch (thanks!) and I headed down to Pike Place Market to pick up some comics that I'd missed.

That evening I had dinner with some friends from work, then met some more friends downtown at Pesos to say goodbye to someone who's moving away next weekend to Spokane. She's a very nice, very cool young woman who's completing her residency in child psychiatry out there. We eventually found our way to a bar that had a dace floor that they flooded with foam. Very cheesy, but very fun -- surprisingly. Once we were all on the floor my attitude changed from "This is so lame" to "I may as well make the best of this." It was pretty fun, but leaving was pretty chilly. Finally made it home (after dropping the others off (I hadn't had anything to drink, so I drove)) at about 3:00 and showered before hitting the sack.

Saturday was remarkable because I think it's the only day in my life in which I've taken three showers. Once, in the morning before going to help move, one in the afternoon after moving and before having dinner and once when I returned from my evening out. Isn't that interesting?

Sunday I slept in, hit the gym, and came to work to run a D&D game that went very well. Now I'm shoving off to catch The Hulk at a 10:15 showing. Must motor.

Oh, I heard that Kim was married today. Congrats. I wish I could have been there.

Wednesday, June 18, 2003

I wish I had cool and exciting news to tell you about something, but I really don't.

I was in a really bad mood the past couple of days because, frankly, I'm sick of being single. I'm sort of over it now, but it's really been nagging at me lately. Probably due to the recent bout with not-dating despite my earnest efforts to correct that problem. No, really, I've tried, I swear! All for naught -- and I'm tired of it.

Work is good. I'm trying to get better-informed about my new product line while still taking care of everything else I have. So far it's going all right.

Oh, I picked up season four of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and I've been spending time watching that. I'm only a few episodes in, but I'm really enjoying it. One thing stands out, though; television series really benefit from some amount of time passing between watching one episode and watching the next. In the time between episodes your brain remembers and forgets certain things that make the episodes fit together better than when they're watched back-to-back. It's similar (in my mind) to how comic books communicate movement and action from one panel to the next. Viewed on their own, each panel is static, but string a few together and your mind puts together an image of a person walking, or a fight, or whatever. With television it's similar, but it has more to do with the characters' emotions and reactions. Each episode the writers have to communicate "this character is sad because of X" until X is resolved. Back to back the stories seem a little...forced and melodramatic, but with a week of time between episodes, some of that melodrama fades and becomes "I remember that this character is upset about X and it looks like she's still dealing with it." I say all this because in the first few episodes Buffy is seduced by a guy and is then dumped after a one-night stand. This really bums her out and makes her feel unattractive and worthless -- and they keep beating it into you every episode! It got a little strained at points, but, like I said, I'm sure distance makes it work better.

One funny thing I thought of; I'm watching episodes now that were the episodes that Robyn from my old job (hi, Greg!) was watching shortly after I started working there. So now I'm projecting back and remembering some of the things that she commented on at the time. It's kinda funny.

Last night I ran Mutants & Masterminds again. It went very well and the players had a great time. I was in a bad mood when we started, but everyone had such a good time during the game, that I really cheered up quickly. That's one of the reasons I like gaming -- it's social and fun and unpredictable. I never would have imagined that a gaming session -- that I was running -- could cheer me up that much.

This weekend I think I'm helping Matt move. Other than that, I dunno.

Time to go eat and hit the gym.

Sunday, June 15, 2003

I got a couple of choice emails from people about the quote I posted last week and I want to let you all know that this was said to me in conversation -- it wasn't the answer to the question, "Why won't you go out with me?"

The end of last week went well. I managed to get a hell of a lot of things done in and around my apartment in preparation for my cookout on Saturday. I rented a small storage space in which to put most of my product from work and a lot of boxes from my apartment. Wow. I really needed to do that. It's amazing how much more room I have to use. It also makes it a lot easier to move my computers into the corner of the living room -- like I've been planning to do for about 6 months now. Once I do that, I may even be able to rearrange my room a little and add another bookcase to my bedroom. A small one, but I can definitely use it. Is it bad when you have six bookcases and that's still not enough?

Anyway, once I cleaned out a bunch of stuff I was able to get down to some serious cleaning. I can honestly say my apartment hasn't ever looked better.

The only drawback to doing all that cleaning was that I had to skip out on a couple of sessions at the gym.

The party went well. I think there were a total of 21 people. I puchased almost exactly the correct amount of food and everyone seemed to have a great time. I was a little bummed that a couple of friends-of-friends didn't make it, but whatchagonnado? I was happy to see that Erin, a friend of some of the people from work showed up. She was awfully nice and a lot of fun. I don't know her well, but she seems cool.

People trickled out over the course of the evening, but most people stuck around until at least 11:00 and some even hung on until about 1:00. Fine by me, that still gave me plenty of time to clean everything up and still have time to watch an episode of Buffy.

This morning I slept in, continued to try to dry some laundry (my dryer has been acting up lately. I'll have to talk to my landlord about that. Very annoying.), had a really good workout at the gym, then came to work to finish some things up that were due Friday. Happily, they are now done and I can turn them in.

Now, I think I'm going to go get some dinner and maybe stop by Best Buy to pick up the fourth season of Buffy. Oh, then I'm headed into Seattle to catch Traces of the Dragon: Jackie Chan and His Lost Family. It looks to be very interesting.

Talk to you later.

Friday, June 13, 2003

Quote of the day yesterday?

"I couldn't date someone who made less than 80K."

I'll update more later. I just thought that needed mentioning.

Wednesday, June 11, 2003

Yes, yes, the week flies by and I don't post. Well, I been busy, dang it!

Monday I found out that one of the guys from work somehow managed to get in touch with the woman I spent most of Friday night talking to and asked her out for coffee. Nice. Real nice.

Also, Monday I met a woman for dinner. We had a great time. Tuesday I wrote her and told her I had a good time and I'd like to see her again (because I did and I do). Wednesday she wrote me back and told me she and the guy she'd been informally dating had moved this on to a more exclusive dating relationship, so we probably shouldn't see each other again.

So, those two things have kind of overshadowed my week.

Luckily, I am distracting myself from the Worldwide Conspiracty to Keep Jon Single by: 1) throwing my first party at my apartment on Saturday, and; 2) receiving a large box of free comics from Brian in Tampa.

Tuesday night I played Shadowrun with a bunch of people from work and tonight the company hosted a giant super-hero smackdown against a bunch of people from Microsoft -- remember a few weeks ago when I went over there to play an early version of a computer game? Well, this was the payback. We had a blast. I played one of three 300 point Sentinels against 900 points-worth of X-Men. They trounced us, but we started to bring the Sentinels back once they died, so the X-Men took out about four Sentinels before we took out all of the X-Men.

Now I'm updating and then I'm heading to the gym. I have to remember to pick up milk and yogurt tonight on my way back from the gym.

Oh, Greg, I'm glad you're not dead.


Sunday, June 08, 2003

I had a farily busy weekend. Friday was, by far, the highlight. I'll walk you through it.

For reasons explained in my last post, I was in a weird mood for a couple of days -- especially late Thursday and most of Friday. It was one of those "I don't want to be around people, but I don't want to be alone" sort of moods. I find those to be difficult to deal with, because nothing feels right. Luckily, I was able to actually have things both ways because I went to a movie with a large group of people from work. One of the guys I work with (sort of. I should explain that; this guy, Bob, works in the same office as me, but he actually works for one of the owner's other companies.) was one of the Producers on the movie Dummy (no official site, but that one should do, if not, try this one.) and he'd asked a number of us from work to come out and see it.

We met up beforehand at a bar called Linda's. I arrived a little late so almost as soon as I walked in, we all walked out to stand in the line for the movie. Quite a line, too, it stretched around the corner and down the block. We made out way in pretty quickly and were all happy to learn that Bob had reserved a row of seats just for us! We ended up having some of the best seats in the house, plus we were all able to sit together instead of having 16 of us split up around the theatre.

The movie was hilarious. I like movies that are a little off-kilter, and this one certainly fit that description. Everyone had a blast and laughed a lot. I'm not sure how much promotion or how widely it will be distributed, but if this movie comes to your area, check it out, I'm sure you'll enjoy it.

Afterwards, we all went to an informal reception at Il Bistro, I've been there a couple of times before, so it was easy to find. Plus, it's right in Pike Place Market. I walked in, said hello to a couple of people and took a chair next to a woman named Kristin. She was here with a friend of her's (Karin, pronounced like "car in the garage") who'd been contacted by one of the other producers of the movie on an online dating site. He'd asked Karin to come down for the movie and have a night out -- and she, wisely, brought a friend as back up. Anyway, I spent most of the evening talking with the two of them.

We were all kicked out of Il Bistro at closing time and then walked over to the hotel that some of the people were staying at. We hung out in the lobby for a while and talked a bit more, but things had pretty much wound down, so about 3:20 I and another guy from work left. At the same time Kristen and Karin left and Kristen gave me her email address and said since we all live in Seattle (as opposed to the producer who'd invited them; he lives in L.A.) we should get together. I gladly accepted the card and I'm sure we'll get together soon.

Actually, that's pretty good timing, because I was thinking of having a party in the next couple of weeks. I've been saying for months and months that it's about time I have a party, and, well, it's about time I had a party, isn't it? Who knows, maybe if I can clean up my apartment I'll have one this weekend. I'd like to.

Saturday I had another bit of fun.

Earlier in the week, someone contacted me about buying my old car. He didn't have a way to get over to see it, but I said I could drive it down to him. I slept in late because I was out so late, but I got a map and then went to meet one of the guys I work with, so he could follow me to the guy's house and give me a ride home if he bought it.

We met up and drove to the street -- not in the nicest part of town -- and looked for the address. No luck. Circle back. Nope, not that one either...Hmmm, maybe it's that one? The one completely overgrown with trees and bushes, with about a dozen cars in the front yard, including an old gospel church bus, and -- and this is the best part -- chickens and roosters walking around the yard. I felt like I'd taken a left turn into Alabama. It wasn't quite as bad as the house that I always pass on my trips to and from Madison (Seth and Rob know what I'm talking about), but it certainly brought that to mind. Anyway, I called the number I had for the guy and, yes, indeed, this was the place.

He came out to meet me. Seemed like a nice guy and he really needed a car to get back and forth to work. We talked a bit and settled on a deal that I'm fine with, so he has my car and hopefully I'll see the other half of the money in a couple weeks. He was really happy that I'd work with him on that and we went into the house to work everything out. The house was actually pretty nice inside. Too much stuff lying about, and too many animals, but it was a nice, solid house.

Afterward, I hoped to go straight home, but the guy who gave me a ride had to pick up his wife and daughter from soccer practice, then go shopping, then their car's brakes were acting up, so they picked up some brake fluid. That didn't help, so we dropped the two of them at home and took that car to the mechanic's...where we had to wait to get a rental car. Finally, five hours after I'd left that morning, I was dropped off. That was fine, I didn't really have too much to do, but I really needed to do laundry because I was gone last weekend. Plus, one of the women at work had invited me to a "BBQ" at her cousin's.

Something had to win out -- and it was laundry. I'd hoped to go to the cook-out, but it didn't happen. The dryer was acting up and the whole evening was pretty much shot. Luckily, I got to watch the rest of Angel season one (very good stuff), order in some pizza (it's been moooonths since I've done that, and just relax. I felt bad about missing the cook-out, but I think I needed a night alone with no weird stress haning over my head. It was nice.

Sunday, I made it to the gym for the first time in a week and a half, went to see The Italian Job, which was good and worth the matinee price I paid, had a sushi dinner, and ran the second part of the D&D game for some people at work.

Wow, I've had some long posts lately. I hope this means my life's getting more interesting. *Grin*

Grocery time, then bed time.

See ya!

Thursday, June 05, 2003

This is a string of random things that have come to mind.

The bamboo outside my apartment is growing by about a foot a day. No lie. I marked one piece with my pen today when I came to work, so I'm curious to see how much it's grown since then.

Yesterday was my little sister's 9th anniversary with her husband.

Tomorrow is my parent's 39th anniversary.

Today is the 11th anniversary of my friend Dave's death.

All three of those effect me in different ways. I'm amazed my little sister's been married for that long -- but it makes me feel old and seriously behind the curve. I'm happy that my parents are so cool and love each other and are still together. I'm...sad about Dave and disappointed in myself for not making more of the time that I've had that he hasn't. He died about a month after his 23rd birthday and I remember thinking, when I turned 23 a couple of months later, that every day I had from that point forward was a day longer than Dave had. I promised I'd take better advantage of that time, but I don't really feel like I have.

Eh, the anniversary of his death always gets to me. I miss him. He was as close to a brother as I ever had when I was a kid. He moved in, I think, when we were eight, and died 15 years later. When we first met we didn't really like each other much, but we quickly got over that and became very good friends. He's the one who introduced me to D&D when we were about 12 and we played almost every day after school. Just the two of us. You get to know someone really well when you socialize with them every day for four to six hours.

I was there while his parents went throught their divorce. I was there when his dog, Gypsy was hit by a car and died in his arms. I was the first person he told about his first kiss. I was the first person he told about the first time he had sex. I was there when his mom remarried a man that Dave really didn't like all that well (since Bob wasn't his dad. Bob was a good guy, though.) I was there when Dave got into the guitar and we'd sit for hours while he tried to perfect this or that song. I heard all about his drunken nights out. I watched him get stoned every now and again. I never drank or smoked and he didn't care. He told how the students at the Catholic high school sold drugs to each other. I heard about the girls he had crushes on. I heard about everything.

His mom was like my second mom. But I still can't talk to her for some reason. I just can't do it.

He's one of the big reasons why I'm the person I am and why I do what I do.

And I miss him.

Eleven years. Wow.

I just don't have anything else to say.

Wednesday, June 04, 2003


Tuesday, June 03, 2003

I'm back from my trip to Philadelphia. It was very tiring and I don't really feel like doing a whole heck of a lot of updating right now. Instead, I'm thinking of grabbing some dinner, doing a little grocery shopping, maybe picking up a DVD to watch tonight, and then going to bed.

I think that sounds awfully good.

I'll update tomorrow.