Saturday, September 17, 2011


So you may have noticed, I haven't had much to say here in the last few years.  So the brief overview of my geeky life:  I've stopped playing WoW, I've resumed playing City of Heroes, I've obtained a Wii (but I don't use it very much), I still enjoy tabletop RPGs, I plan on running a new BESM campaign soon, I got a new computer, I changed the OS on my old computer to a Linux distro (Linux Mint, plus dual-booting my main computer to Kubuntu alongside the Windows 7 it came with), I'm still watching anime (but not as much as I used to), I've rediscovered my love of Doctor Who, and I'm currently engaged in a game of chess over Facebook.   For any who care less about my geeky hobbies, but may be curious about my personal life in rough chronological order:  I left Onvoy, I moved from Morris to the Twin Cities, my father died (October 19, 2008), I floundered around a bit working some jobs that weren't very good fits for me,  my roommate moved to Vermont, I paid off my car, I became unemployed, I remained unemployed for far too long, and most recently (as in this week) I started a new job that I am extremely excited about.

So that's been my last three years or so in a nutshell.

Now to keep me honest, the breakdown of the Facebook chess match with my friend Joel:

             Me                   Joel
             White               Black

 1.         e4                    e5
 2.         Nf3                  Nc6
 3.         Bb5                 Bc5        (Ruy Lopez, countered by the classical (Cordel) defense)
 4.         c3                   Nf6
 5.         d4                   exd4
 6.         e5                   Ne4
 7.         O-O                dxc3
 8.         bxc3               d5
 9.         Nd4                O-O
10.        Nxc6               bxc6
11.        Bxc6               ba6
12.        Qxd5              . . .

I leave you with an amusing video found on CollegeHumor (the ending veers into NSFW territory YMMV):

Friday, September 09, 2011

It's the best day ever tomorrow!

I don't imagine it is that terribly hard to find amusing videos on YouTube. I just don't generally have the patience to go look for them myself. Fortunately for me I have several friends who are very good at finding them.

A fair warning, the following is probably NSFW do to language reasons (I guess you all know your respective work environments best, but just so you can't say I didn't warn you).  In any event this was originally uploaded to YouTube by bishopvids.  Enjoy.

Thursday, September 08, 2011

My gift to you.

I felt like sharing some positive feedback. So here you go.  To anybody that has done something good:

 And to anybody that I like:


 You may now return to your regular Internets. . .

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

How to Give a Surprise Post

Basic Instructions

I'm not sure why I keep forgetting how funny this web comic is. I really should read it on a regular basis. To be fair the list of things I should do on a regular basis probably has a few more important entries than go read this excellent comic, but that doesn’t lessen the fact I really ought to add it to my list. For some reason it always make me think of an old coworker of mine from the days I worked at Onvoy Voice Services. With that non sequitur out of the way, I disappear back into the void of no updates I emerged from.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

And again

Just to reestablish the primacy of my geekdom:

Out of the blue

As much as I identify myself as being a geek, there is still a healthy dose of nerd in me. I found this link very interesting:

Friday, November 27, 2009

Comfort Food and Short Work Days

As it turned out I only had to do a half day at work today. I’m about 75% thrilled, 25% annoyed by that. I am generally always happy to get out of work early, especially on a Friday - by all means let my weekend get started Friday afternoon instead of Friday evening. However there is a small part of me that cannot quite stop thinking, “I couldn’t go home and see my family for this, a stinking 4 hour day at work!” It’s not like I didn’t think there was a halfway decent chance some people would get to go home early, of course there was no guarantee I was going to be one of them, so I couldn’t really make any plans around it. If I had known for sure, I could have had my laundry done, been packed, had my car’s oil changed, and been ready to leave the cities straight from work. I had a few fleeting thoughts about quick tossing some clothes in a bag and hopping in my car for the seven hour trek back home anyway, but in the end I decided I really probably should make sure I have something to wear to work next week, and I suspect my roommate would appreciate having the dishes be washed when he gets back to the apartment on Sunday. So instead of a road trip, I’m blogging.

I realize looking over yesterday’s post I perhaps came out sounding just a bit more pathetic than I’m actually feeling. I didn’t spend the day sitting in the dark, drinking alcohol, and weeping over missed turkey dinners or any similar activities. I had a perfectly enjoyable time playing a few video games, and listening to the Theft of the Dial marathon on The Current. I also implemented the first step of my “Make This Weekend be About Comfort Food Plan” I had come up with earlier this week. I started things off pretty simply, I went with tomato soup and grilled cheese for supper. I have not had either for years, and I’ve been craving tomato soup for the last month so all in all it was an excellent substitute for the nonexistent turkey dinner leftovers.

I was about halfway to my car after getting off from work when a new step two dawned on me. I very quickly placed a to go order for some fettuccine alfredo, and a bowl of chicken and gnocchi soup from the Olive Garden down the street from my office. I’m probably going to have to rethink my supper plans however; I had planned on deciding between Annie’s Shells & Real Aged Cheddar, and Annie’s Shells & White Cheddar. Again something I haven’t eaten in years (I used to pick them up at the food co-op back in Morris), but I don’t think I’ll eat two pasta dishes on the same day. I may go with cooking up a half cup of rice (probably with some chicken or vegetable broth added for flavor), and one of those individual servings of chicken cordon bleu you can get out of a store’s frozen food section (strangely enough one of the few times I’ll willing eat ham). Alternatively I may have to go with a baked potato, the point is I have plenty of options.

Enough about food, and enough blogging, it is time for me to decide between (or probably more accurately choose an order for) anime, manga, movies, and video games. Surprisingly I have to report as a dark horse possibility I find myself actually tempted to go out shopping. This would be pretty unusual behavior for me as a basic rule-of-thumb I try and avoid retail on Black Friday (and really for as much of the Christmas shopping season as I possibly can), but for some reason I keep thinking that a trip to Best Buy, and Barnes and Noble could be rather fun.

Regardless of what I end up doing today, I bid you all a good Black Friday however you choose to spend it - be it sane or otherwise.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Another Bachelor Thanksgiving

For the second Thanksgiving in a row, I’m hanging out alone at my apartment. In many ways it is just as depressing as it sounds. I would prefer to have made the seven hour car trip to South Dakota to have Thanksgiving with my family, but as I have to work tomorrow that was impractical.

Like last year I went to my local Perkins to eat. Their turkey dinner is passable, certainly not in the same league as a proper Thanksgiving spread with friends and family, but nothing really to complain about. It certainly made me feel thankful for the Thanksgiving meals of my youth (probably not the feeling Perkins would like to invoke). Mostly it was seeing all the children there that made me feel that way. While you can spend an enjoyable time with family in most any setting, I was still quite glad I never had to settle as a child for a trip to a restaurant instead of getting an oven roasted turkey with all the accompaniments.

The alternative to my trip to Perkins, and this weekend I may still end up doing this, would be preparing the bachelor Thanksgiving meal. I did this once while I was still living in Morris. The main ingredient is picking up a broasted turkey breast from a grocery store. Everything else is just selecting what sides to go with it. When I did it in Morris, I went with carrots, potatoes, stuffing, and gravy. I boiled the potatoes and carrots until they were just shy of being done, and then arranged them around the turkey breast in a baking pan, I added some turkey broth to supply a little moisture, and finished cooking them while I was reheating the turkey in the oven. The stuffing and gravy were sad compromises as the gravy came from a jar (I shuddered while typing that) while the stuffing was made on the stove. All in all a tastier, if more expensive option then a meal at a restaurant, but it does have the benefit of leaving leftovers.

Happy Thanksgiving all.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

ZOMG E-mail Fraud

I received a Nigerian Letter via e-mail today. This amused me a bit, and got me to thinking, "have I ever received one of these before?" After some thought I have to say to my best recollection, I have not. Or at least I haven't received one that didn't get caught by a spam filter and get deleted without me ever knowing of its existence.

For my own particular letter the "bank" in question is located in South Africa and not Nigeria, but a scam is a scam is a scam regardless of where the con men claim the fictitious money is located. Were I to actually contact the sender of this e-mail, all I'd get for my foolish greed is somebody trying to get me to give up my bank account information and/or wire him money. In honor of me getting my first Nigerian Letter scam (at least the first one I've actually noticed) I'm posting a copy of the actual letter (I did blur out the e-mail address just in case someone takes this seriously despite the fact I've done nothing but talk about how it's a fraud).

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Procrastination defeated? (plus less Wednesday annoyance)

I have this bad habit. Well truthfully I have several bad habits, but the one I'm thinking of is I tend to borrow anime and manga from my friend Dan, and then ignore it. This is a pretty silly thing to do, because I only borrow the things I'm interested in either watching or reading, yet I still do it. I don't believe it has anything specific to do with Dan, quite honestly I behaved in much the same way when I last had Netflix. My latest movie would arrive in the mail, and I wouldn't watch it. I think what happens is I start thinking of the borrowed item as something I need to watch (or read) and then return ASAP, so I subconsciously equate the borrowed media with a chore, and not as something fun I'd like to do. Procrastinating chores is as natural as breathing to me (perhaps a small bit of hyperbole there).

I bring this up because seemingly out of the blue the other day I started reading Monster again. When I first borrowed Monster from Dan (probably almost a year ago at this point) I read and really liked the first volume right away. Over the next month I very slowly read volumes two and three. Then I stalled out on four. Two nights ago, I picked volume four up again, and finished it off. Volumes five and six quickly followed, and last night I devoured seven. I have every intention of reading eight tonight, and keeping up with my pace of one or two volumes a day until I finish this off, and return it to Dan. It is among the best manga I've ever read, so beyond my little theory outlined above, I have no clue why I haven't finished this off months ago.

I have a few general observations about Monster. Finding redemption for past mistakes and/or wrongs seems to be a poor survival tactic in the universe of Monster. I'm quickly losing count of the number of characters who while trying to make up for their past sins are killed either by Johan or somebody connected to him. Only slightly less deadly would be choosing to either directly or indirectly help Tenma on his quest to stop Johan. Of course the absolutely most deadly job in the world of Monster is being Johan's foster parents, chances are quite high that any character introduced as being such, was already dead when introduced to the story.

As per my usual Wednesday ritual I watched the newest Kimi ni Todoke this morning before work. Since this was the end of a story-arc I did go to work much happier today then I did the last two Wednesdays. Granted I'm still impatient for more episodes, and I strongly suspect that future Wednesdays will leave me in much the same state as I described last week, for now I'm satisfied (well mostly, did I mention I'm impatiently waiting for more episodes).

One of the nice things about living in the cities as opposed to being back in Morris, is I'm once again able to watch anime with my friend Dan. This last weekend we finished off Ghost Hunt (third time through that series for me, first time for Dan). I've mentioned Ghost Hunt here in this very blog after I'd finished watching it the first time. I like it, I wouldn't have suggested Dan watch it if I didn't think it was quite fun. It is however not perfect. I have a few minor quibbles here and there, and one fairly large complaint with one story-arc right in the middle of the series. That arc features both a really bad case of plot induced stupidity (well technically I guess TV Tropes would call it Contrived Stupidity, but I've always liked the sound of the former better), and a troubling blow to ones suspension of disbelief (we are supposed to believe a body left basically in the open at a church remained unnoticed for 30 some odd years). That little two-episode arc aside, it remains an enjoyable series that is well worth watching.

Returning to an old blog tradition I return to the Monster theme and leave you with the following amusing picture.