Monday, May 30, 2005

Got My Poppy

Brief recap of the weekend:

Friday I went to a late dinner with Shane, Cathy, Jen, Hays, and Shana. We ate at the Metling Pot in Seattle and it took forever! We had to start dinner a bit late in order to accomodate everyone's schedule, so we ordered around 9:00 and finished dinner around 12:30. Ugh.

Happily we had a great time and were able to catch up with what Jen and Shane have been up to at their new jobs. We all had a great time and we alternating entertained and annoyed our waiter most of the evening. In the end I think he really enjoyed us, so that's a good thing. Some of our conversations were really funny, but the one that stands out as being particularly odd was when we had a conversation that degenerated into joke-telling, then ended, then we had exactly the same conversation again -- same jokes, same everything. Then we did it again. We were all laughing like idiots by the end of it, but that's because we have very similar senses of humor, so we thought it was funny.

Saturday Seth and I met up with Chris from Green Ronin because we'd been talking about swapping product. So, I gave him a bunch of goodies and he gave me a bunch of goodies. And we all went out for lunch at a nearby restaurant. It was a good time. I could definitely see getting together with him on a more regular basis. He's a smart, creative guy. It's funny, though, because we only know each other from workstuff, so that's all we end up talking about.

The rest of Saturday was filled with DVDs. Actually, much of the weekend was, except for Saturday night when I met up with Jen (who's in town for a few days from L.A.), her brother and some of her friends for dinner at Chantanee and some drinks at Rock Bottom. It was good to see her again. She seems to be doing well.

Sunday I picked up my apartment and cleaned the balcony and the furniture on it -- something I didn't do last year -- because I planned to have people over on Monday for a cookout (what people in these parts call a bar-b-que). I haven't had people over in a long time, so I figured it was overdue, plus I hadn't used my grill at all last year, so hopefully this sets a precedent for me and I'll continue to use it regularly this summer.

I've been making a lot of notes for a story I want to write. I have a number of really good ideas for it -- or rather -- I have a number of ideas that I'm really pleased with, others will have to judge if they're really good ideas. I'm still have a big issue deciding where to start and what the central point of conflict is, but ideas are snowballing in my head, so it's just a matter of time.

Monday I had Shana, Shane, Cathy, Seth, Chris, Jen, Hays, and Matt over for the cookout. Beforehand I went shopping and gave money to the Vet standing in the store, so I received my little, paper poppy and a nice thank you from the Vet. At the cookout everyone had too much good food and got to relax and watch some of Shana's DVDs of the Chappelle Show. I hadn't seen any of it before and it was damn funny.

Okay. The last week I've been as bad as ever about my food and I really need to change that. I remember a time a couple of years ago in which I was very motivated and very dedicated to getting healthier and being more active. I'm not sure what happened, but I know I've been backsliding for a while now. I'm not sure if I'll start tomorrow, but I have to get back to that. I have to start reforming some healthy habits and really dedicate myself. Yes, I know, it's all talk until I actually take action, but I've been stuck on the same plateau for about three years now and it's killing my motivation. I have to make a radical change again in order to force my body into losing weight again.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Nothing Pressing

I've been bad about updating this week, but that's because I've actually been having fun. Well, except for Wednesday, I was in a bad mood Wednesday.

I finished watching all of Angel season 4 (including commentary tracks) and have now started in on Angel season 5. Season 5 is much, much stronger than the previous seasons and I'm really enjoying it.

Tuesday evening I got a call from Shane and Cathy. It seems they were shopping downtown and when they went to hop in their car they found it missing. (Interesting sentence.) Turns out it had been stolen by some blonde woman -- the only woman they let out without a parking stub all day. They called so that I could take them home, but by the time I got there they'd received a call saying the car had been abandoned on Broadway and towed. So I took them to the tow yard.

Normally when a car is stolen you'd think the chances of getting it back are pretty slim, but to get it back within 3 hours of it being stolen? And you'd expect that the thief would actually steal valuables from the car. Instead everything was there -- plus she left a Tupac CD in the stereo. Bonus! Unfortunatly it cost Shane and Cathy $100 to get the car back, but that's much better than losing a whole car, plus it makes for a good story, right?

Wednesday I had pizza for dinner with Matt at my place. Not as good a story, eh?

Tonight (Thursday) I went to see Serenity with a bunch of people from work. For those that don't know, Serenity is a movie based on the Firefly television series from a couple of years ago. If you liked the series, you'll love the movie. It's surprising how good the movie is. It's very different from the new Star Wars movie, but so much better -- more laughter, more highs, more lows, more characterization, more beleivable moral quandries, more plot, more direction, pretty much more of everything. Go see the movie when it comes out.

Check out more here.

Oh, and thanks to everyone who voted for Katie on NPR's All Songs Considered. She ended up with the highest rating and I think she deserved it. Now let's all work together to make her famous, so that we can all say we know someone famous. Won't that be fun?

Sunday, May 22, 2005

...and a new toy

Friday -- right after work -- a bunch of us went to a nearby restaurant to have birthday dinner for a co-worker's daughter. There were about a dozen of us and we had a great time. The girl (Clementine) turned seven and she's about the sweetest kid ever. Gifts weren't expected, but a number of us got her something anyway and she really appreciated it. She was very thankful and sweet. I think she thanked me three time on the way out to the car. Who knew that a My Little Pony castle would be so cool?

I wasn't hungry enough to eat at the birthday dinner, so I made something quick at home, then went to see Katie play at the Trabant Chai Lounge on 45th in the University district. She did a great job and I have a handful of pictures that I have to get to her soon. Afterward we went for some drinks with friends and co-workers. Katie and I always have a good time.

Satruday Seth and I did comics quickly, so that I could make it back downtown to the ferry by about 2:00. I had to make it over to Bainbridge for Viking Days in Poulsbo with a friend. I got a nice tour of her house (which is amazing) and then went to her mom's place for a day of good food and lots of conversation. I didn't end up leaving until after midnight and there was still a kitchenful of people there.

I don't know why, but after a full day around a bunch of people I barely knew I was really nervous. I don't know if it was due to having a couple drinks and then letting enough time pass that they wore off, or if it was just because I'm not used to having lots of people around and being social in a setting like that, but wow, was I uncomfortable by the end of the night. That said, I had a really good time and enjoyed meeting some new people.

Sunday I got up and dressed quickly so I could meet a friend for a day of checking out a street fair in the University district and then seeing a movie at the Seattle International Film Festival, but instead we talked for a while and that was about it. So, instead of the movie and such I ran some errands; picked up some games (which I haven't done in a long time), picked up some groceries and picked up my new toy -- a shaver/hair clipper -- which I just used to trim my beard. Exciting, eh?

If you haven't gone to vote for Katie yet, please do so. See the post below.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

I'll Have the Five-Star Katie!

My friend, future megastar Katie Davis, is one of the featured artists on NPR's All Songs Considered Open Mic this week. Go and listen, and don't forget to help her on her climb to chart domination by voting on her song. Might I suggest a 5? Of course I might.

Thanks to Seth for allowing me to repost from his site. It saved me some typing.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005


I visited Jason's site earlier and he'd posted an amazing link to PostSecret. It's a blog with postcards with secrets written on them, all of them are sent in by people out there in the world. They run the gamut from a little silly to stunning, from devastating to poetic. Really amazing stuff. Check it out.

I've been talking for a long time with Shane about writing a movie. I should say, about writing down a movie we've improv-ed and plotted over the past couple of years. We were talking about it again tonight and it's amazing how different it is from everything out there. I just hope we can do it justice on paper. Anyone have a suggestion for (or a copy of) a good scriptwriting program -- or samples to work from?

That's all from me for the night. I have to get up early to make it to a meeting in which I get to speak with England. Yes, all of them.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Fun Things

I've been having some fun lately. Nothing too crazy, just enjoying myself and my freetime again. I forgot what it was like to be able to go see a movie on a weeknight -- which is was I did Monday evening. I went to see the new Jet Li flick Unleashed with a friend, it was a good action movie. I'm sure if I were the type to read meaning into movies (which I admittedly am) I'm sure there's supposed to be some meaning to it regarding indoctrination and blindly following orders. By the way; Monday night is a good night to see movies, because it's really not busy.

This evening I played in the first session of Jason's zombie game. It's set at a thinly-veiled version of the San Diego Comic Con. So far it's fun, but most of the other players weren't really getting the whole deadly-zombie vibe, so it lost a little something.

I came up with a new term:

anecdotal fact: presenting a story or hearsay as truth, especially to back up or support one's decisions

Such as: "He played the game with his son and his son's friend, they didn't understand it, so he claims the game is too complicated based on anecdotal fact."

I believe this will become a very popular term for people who hate marketing and marketers.

Monday, May 16, 2005

Nothing To Do

I had a very relaxing weekend. Friday night was bowling. I wasn't quite in the mood for a night out, but it was a good time. I bowled two of the worst games I've every bowled, then I moved six inches to the left on my approach and I bowled one of my best games ever. Weird.

Saturday Seth and I had an annoying morning of trying to find some breakfast. We went to Factoria, looked for a place to have food... it was closed, visited a couple of stores, headed to Seattle to find food, decided to run errands first, so after two, two-and-a-half hours we finally found a cafe to have something to eat. Kind of annoying, but the food was good.

I spent the afternoon cleaning and putting up a new shower curtain that I'm really happy with. Actually, it's a bit weird how happy I am with the new curtain. It looks much, much better than the old one and it's the right size (the last one was too long).

Theat evening I went to Seth's for some dinner with Matt, Chris, and him. Then we watched It Happened At The World's Fair, an Elvis movie. I'm still a little confused with exactly what the "It" that happened at the fair was, but it was a cheezy little movie.

Sunday I watched a bunch of the fourth season of Angel and worked on things for the Thursday game. I also worked for a bit and played the regular City of Heroes game.

Overall, like I said, a nice, relaxing weekend and I was able to do a number of things that I really needed to do. It's funny how wasy it is to let things go when you have a project to do on the side.

Friday, May 13, 2005

State of Mine

I've been pretty relaxed the past few days... which probably explains why I haven't posted anything despite the fact that I've had some late-night time in which I could have written an update or two. I imagine I've been relaxed because the deadlines are all done and I'm busy winding down from them. Okay, enough talk about work.

Tuesday's D&D game didn't happen and I think it's going to die or be transformed into a series of different games run by rotating GMs. Mike is finishing up his current run of his Shadowrun game and we'll probably roll the groups together and try some different systems. Mostly I want to get into a schedule with these games that allows us to really run/play some good stories. I've been pretty unexcited about most of the games I've been playing.

Thursday's game wrapping up Johnzo's run of Castles & Crusades was actually pretty damn cool. In fact, I think the game ended fat stronger than the rest of the campaign was (and that's not a rip, it's just that the ending was very strong) and may have been the most interesting and satisfying end to a campaign that I've played in for a long, long time -- maybe ever, considering how weakly most campaigns end.

Next week I'll start a weird super-powers campaign I've nicknamed Mad City. I still have things to work out regarding it, but it's a strange game revolving around a city and it's inhabitants that have been mutated by some sort of madness bomb.

Wednesday was Jen's last day at work. She was our photographer for two years or so, but now she's moved onto a company that can actually offer a photographer a career path, which is a good thing for her. It sucks for the rest of us because we won't be able to walk into her little studio, sit down, and chat for a while to take a break from work... wait, maybe that's just me. Anyway, good luck to her. Now she can spend time selling a bunch of the sets of our product that she has sitting around.

Friday night will be an exciting evening of bowling at the Sunset Bowl. It's the official send-off party for Jen and Liz (who's not quite gone yet) and it ought to be a lot of fun. I imagine most of the office will be there.

Time for work.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Done and Done (Part II)

I managed to get my tire fixed (in a reasonable amount of time this time) and finish up all the math on my editing project yesterday. So now it's with the author and as soon as I have his feedback I'll put everything together and be done. Plus, I wrapped up some proofing at work so that the art department could get everything sent out. Pretty good for a Monday.

Tonight we're supposed to play D&D, but I don't know if that's going to work out. My boss will only be here another month and a half -- and he's traveling for some of it -- so we don't have much time to do anything. Ah well, we'll figure something out.

Oh, I got a haircut yesterday, too. Very, very short; not bald, but about two steps away.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Another and Another

I had a couple of repeat things happen this weekend.

Friday was Seth's birthday (Jen's, too), so I had dinner with him and a mixture of people from work. Sunday night was Shane's birthday, so I had dinner with him and a mixture of people from work. Happy birthday everybody!

I walked out of dinner and looked across the parking lot at my car and it looked like, you guessed it, I had another freakin' flat tire. So I changed that with a co-worker's help and was on my way about ten minutes later. I just had all four tires replaced about a month ago, so that's kind of a bummer.

I spent much of the rest of the weekend indoors editing (actually finishing up the math on the project I'm working on) and I watched Big Fish. I hadn't watched that in a long time. I like that movie. Now I have to watch the commentary track.

More than I year ago I bought or received as a gift (I have no ideas which) a "mini bonsai kit". It's one of those little boxes you find at bookstores and the like. Last week I'd taken the thing out and stuck the seeds in the freezer as directed, so Saturday I planted them in the little compact earth-thing that came with it. Hopefully in a few weeks I'll have some sprouts I can start cultivating. I'll let you know how it goes.

And finally, happy mothers day to you, Mom! I hope you had a good day with the grandkids and your daughters. I'm sorry I wasn't home to give you a big hug and kiss.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Done, Part I

Tonight I finished the text portion of what I had to edit -- all 350 pages of it -- now I have to double check the math on the various characters, but that shouldn't take all that long. I'm sure I'll also look at some other things,like which charts and table need to be copied into an appendix or two, but that's no biggie, either.

Friday is Seth's birthday and neither he nor I have thought about it much, so I don't know what sort of fun we'll end up having. I have a gift or four for him already and I'm really looking forward to handing them off.

I was able to see a movie today that the rest of the world won't be able to see for two more weeks. Maybe I'll write more about it later, but I thought it was just barely okay. The writing was weak, the plots superficial, and the characterization fairly cardboard. It's so sad to me that it's such a rich, cool, and fun universe, but the movie just glosses over the parts that are actually cool in order to have big fight scenes that don't seem to have much of a point.

That said, part III was better than parts I and II. And it was a great break from work.

I had a bit of a headache earlier, but now I feel much better. Hopefully that's the end of it. I hate getting sick -- well, okay, I hate being sick, but you know what I mean.

Time to read or watch a move, then go to bed. More later.

Monday, May 02, 2005

Music To My Ears

Some songs randomly came up on rotation on my computer today as I was proofing things at work -- and then editing things at home (page 309) and I wanted to write something about both artists/albums.

Artist: Beck
CD: Guero
I like Beck. Initially I liked Beck despite myself, but he was good when he first appeared and he's only gotten better with time. His newest release, Guero, is his best so far. The entire CD is full of excellent tracks. Sure, some are weaker than others, but there are far more strong tracks than weak ones.

The lyrics are classic Beck; surreal, nonsensical, poetic, evocative, and just plain good. The music is solid and the whole package is produced excellently. Much of Beck's work runs the risk of sounding a bit over-produced, but none of the tracks on this release come close. Instead they just sound good.

If you've ever enjoyed a single song by Beck (heck, even if you haven't), I recommend this CD. And maybe it's just me, but some of the tracks sound like something Peter Gabriel might do. High praise in my book.

Stand out tracks: E-Pro, Que Onda Guero, Girl, Missing, Earthquake Weather, Rental Car, and I'm sure others will grow on me over time.

Artist: Katie Davis
CD: Terrible, Terrible (or at Amazon)
Katie Davis is new to this whole music thing, but you'd never know by listening to her first release. It's a collection of four of her songs and really only makes you want to hear more of what must be a closetful -- or at least a headful -- of music.

All of the songs on this CD are sad and sweet and sincere. Sometimes achingly so. You really get a sense of the experiences behind each song even as you're enjoying them for being really good songs. And despite the fact that each of the songs was no doubt inspired by events from her life, they're written broadly enough that anyone can empathize with the sentiment they contain. These songs are why I listen to music.

I know I've mentioned Katie here before, but she deserves your support and you will absolutely love her music. I swear. For reals.

Why write about these? Because I think you should pick up both CDs if you're into music. They're too damn good to miss.

Sunday, May 01, 2005

I Suppose I Should Say Something

I haven't had a whole heck of a lot happening lately, but I finally managed to turn in my latest project and I even took Friday morning off to catch up on some sleep. I was exhausted. More than I knew actually. It was good to sleep in.

Speaking of sleep. I haven't been sleeping all that well lately. I go to bed and take a little longer than usual to fall asleep, but then I keep waking up in the early morning. It's been happening for a week (maybe less), but it's really annoying. Of course tomorrow I'll oversleep, mark my words.

Friday was the last day at work for one of the women in our sales department. She's heading back to Ohio to have some surgery and have her family take care of her for a while. It was nice because a lot of people showed up to see her off and we all have a good time.

Then there was much editing. I'm not quite as far as I wanted to be, but I'm only about 15 pages short of my goal for the weekend, so that's not bad. I can make that up in an hour or two. I really need to get everything done this week, though, so no fun for me!

I managed to get out for some nice dinners this weekend. That was very nice, I enjoyed myself, and I really needed the breaks.

Okay, bed now.