Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Whack to the Side of the Head

Saturday, Julia and I spent about five hours in the backyard cleaning up the garden. We shoveled the dirt in the compost heap into a flowerbed so we can use it in the future. Then we shoveled all of the leaves, sticks, and such into the composter where it is now merrily rotting away thanks to the worms and other little critters.

I carted 30+ paving stones from where the previous owners had set them in the lawn and used them to create a paved path around the flower beds that were already in place. I'll try to get some pictures and post them so you can see the difference. Julia and I are both very pleased with how it turned out. It'll also keep us from getting really muddy feet as we stomp around out there, too. Which is nice. The only bad things are how tiring it was to move all the stones and how sore I was the next day. Ouch. Oh, and I scraped my head on a light post in the backyard, so I had a four- or five-inchlong welt on my head for a couple days. Ouch, again.

We wanted to move the stones because construction will start next door sometime soon. We want to make sure that we have everything we want from that part of the yard. I think the only things we have left to move is an old trellis-bench and some rocks that should look good in the yard.

Monday I filled out an application/test for a possible job. It was entertaining, but I hope I won't need to take the job -- or any job other than the one I've been working for the last few months. Things are looking pretty good there again, but it's always challenging to get things rolling.

We took a break from gaming this past week. The Sunday D&D game is on hold until people are available again, which should be in a couple weeks. The Tuesday game was called due to illness. I was bummed about that because I was really looking for playing a game -- and looking forward to checking out Spirit of the Century. Oh, well, I guess it'll be a month before we can try again. In the meantime, I've prepared some ideas for the next few sessions of Warhammer. I still have time to work out some things for D&D, but it's going well.

I've fallen behind on reading my comics. The last couple of weeks I've spent reading Faerys Tale and Agon, both of which were pretty fun, but I think I prefer Agon. It's subject matter is more interesting to me and I think Faerys Tale is much too complicated for its intended age group (kids 6+). Anyway, I figure I'll catch up on my comics this weekend, especially since I don't need to keep reading Spirit of the Century for another month.

More soon.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

The Big Project

I'm excited to let you know that the freelance project that Seth and I have been working on together is now posted:

Iron Age for Mutants & Masterminds


We had a good time writing it and I think it's filled with some great information, tips, and characters for people interested in running a grim-and-gritty game set in the Iron Age of comics.

Mish Mash

The new company is still not up and running. I've been a paid employee since sometime in September, but we haven't locked down our financing package just yet, which is making moving forward on production, design, and (now) salary, difficult. We have some very good leads, but nothing that's resulted in more money coming our way. It will be "interesting" to see how the next couple of weeks goes. Especially if I don't receive a paycheck at the start of next month.

Due to the unknown nature of the funding, I'm in the midst of a job search, just in case. Like everyone, I have expenses that I have to cover every month, so being without a paycheck will prove to be tricky after a very short time. I have some freelancing money coming in soon, though, so that will help -- but I was really hoping that could go towards a new TV for my office as well as to pay off some of the mortgage and build up a little savings cushion. Anyway, I know something will turn up soon.

Valentine's day was yesterday. It was fun. We didn't do gifts for each other, but I surprised Julia with a card and we ended up going to see a movie (Volver) and having dinner with her parents, which was awfully nice. Plus, they paid, so that made it even nicer. As an extra added bonus, one of the previews was for Children of Men, which I've wanted to see for a while -- and after seeing the preview, Julia was interested, too. So I'm sure we'll see it soon. The only downside to the day was that I had a really bad headache. The diet I'm on for some reason (blood sugar? sugar withdrawal? I dunno.) often gives me an incredibly painful headache within the first three days of starting it every time (its an 11 days on, three days off sort of thing, so I restart it every two weeks). A couple of times it hasn't been bad at all, but last night's was particularly painful and exhausting. Dinner helped. So did a night of sleep, so I'm much better now. Overall, I'm okay with a bad headache every couple of weeks. I've dropped about 25 pounds since starting, so it's worth it.

Later today I have to go help move some furniture out of Julia's grandad's place. Some of it is coming here and other pieces are going to her brother's and parent's places. My elbow still doesn't feel quite right, so it'll probably be pretty sore for the next few days. I really wish I had some kind of medical coverage.

Despite a couple of very challenging fights in my D&D game (I almost wiped out the entire party), everyone seems to be enjoying how things are going. They're in the midst of clearing out a keep for their patron, and so far they've been doing that for two sessions with probably one more to go. What surprises me is how long it seems to be taking. I don't think the pacing is off, but I don't think that I or the players have the patience for multi-sessions "dungeons" anymore. Maybe that's an effect of the shortening of our attention spans, but really I think it's because we're all more interested in seeing the story progress, so we can all see what sort of interesting things are going on. The positive side of this are 1) I know this now, and 2) they characters are now 3rd level, so I (probably) can't kill them in one shot anymore.

A similar, but very different, thing is going on in the Warhammer game. Thankfully, they're both a lot of fun. And next week Wilhelm will be running Spirit of the Century and we're taking a two-week break from D&D because people are unavailable. It'll be nice to have a break from running and prepare for future adventures.

More soon.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Weekly (?) Recap

Julia and I went to her granddad's funeral service this weekend. It was very nice. I was fine until one of the grandkids got up and sang a song he'd written for the service -- then I was in tears. I didn't know "granddad" well, but he was a very, very nice guy that everyone in the family liked. So, I was fine until the singing started, for some reason the emotion that comes through in a person's voice when it gets all thready from holding in their sadness really gets to me. Anyway, from that point on I needed a tissue.

In related news, we received a new couch and chair -- and dumped Julia's old couch. The new stuff is great, but we're still figuring out how to keep the cats from ripping it up.

In other news, I played poker on Monday with some friends. The good news is I won $1.00, the bad news is, I didn't win more. Actually, I was pretty happy with how I played, unlike how the last few times have gone. I'll keep working on improving. Besides, I like the mental exercise involved and the game itself is a good time.

The Sunday D&D game has been going well. I think the group really needs a healer of some kind, but something will come up. Right now they're working on clearing out a keep that their lord was given. The funniest bit was when they tried to distract a strange dragon-bat-thing by throwing chickens to it.

Warhammer has also been going well. (How the hell did I get sucked into running two games at once?) The feel of the game is very different than the D&D game, which is nice, and I'm giving the players a lot of leeway in terms of setting their own agenda. One of the characters has even joined the city guard, which might make "adventuring" a bit difficult. Luckily it works with the plot, so I'm good with it. We'll take a break (for a week) from the Warhammer game in a couple weeks so Wilhelm can run Spirit of the Century, which should be fun. I love pulp games.

Liana left a comment on foam fighting (see Post #666, below), and I guess I can see how it'd be a fun thing to do. But I'm still not going to do it. Call me fickle.

More later.

At Last!

WizKids finally announced their upcoming Star Wars game. It's in the same vein as the Pirates game, so you assemble the ships out of styrene cards.

The thing I really find funny is that I was in on the early stages of the concept and administration of this, yet everyone at WizKids was mum about it since last June. I guess that's good for the company, but it's very strange to me. I'm a little offended by it, but I understand it; I'm no longer on the "inside," so I don't get the inside info anymore. That said, I don't like feeling like a can't be trusted -- especially with something I already knew about!

Anyway, I wish them luck with the game, I'm sure it'll do well. I'm interested in seeing it come June.