Friday, May 25, 2012

Happy Geek Pride Day

So, I vaguely remember reading about this earlier this week, but it must have stayed in the back of my mind, because today I wore my Darth Vader hoodie complete with black Levi's and my black boots.

Plus I have to say that it’s pretty cool that  I’m familiar with all three special dates.

On May 25, 1977, the original Star Wars (A New Hope) opened.  I remember going to see it (not on that day, but soon after it opened).  I remember going with my parents to the theater in Walnut Creek.  It was the first time I’d ever waited in line (that I remember) for a movie.  I was really too young and had sensible parents so I never waited in line all day for the sequels.  I did however wait all day for the three prequels.  At this point, I’m not sure what that says about me.

My dad introduced me to The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy back when I was in high school.  He came home one day with the original trilogy, and I burned through them pretty quickly.  And I thoroughly enjoyed the fourth book (So Long and Thanks For All the Fish), and was slightly disappointed by the end of the fifth.  I have the bible-ish tome that collects all five, and used to read it every year.

But then I found a new obsession.

Early in my time with the marching band in college I met a saxophone player (no not this one, a different one).  I was expounding on the wonders of Douglas Adams, and he told me about Terry Pratchett, who early on in his Discworld career was considered the Douglas Adams of fantasy.  Pratchett quickly grew beyond that title, and made himself a name (and a knight) for showing us the master writer that he is.  Now I read the entire Discworld series every couple of years as well as reading every new book when they come out.

Friday, May 18, 2012

A Rose By Any Other Name

So, no I can’t explain why, but I can do this:

Mrs. Seidman:  I heard about your engagement through a mutual friend.  It was a knife that tore through me, and I even found out the date.  For a a while I brooded, but eventually, I wished you happiness and joy.  Many years later, I saw pictures of the wedding. While it hurt to see them, I saw that you were beautiful and happy.  The strangest thing that I experienced was the closest I’ll probably ever get to falling into a parallel world as I could almost see myself in those pictures.

Mrs. Baerman:  I went to your wedding and was happy for you.  I had thought my feeling gone, but later I, and others who went through similar events that summer commiserated.  I had always hoped you would be happy.

Mrs. Thomas:  This was a surreal event for me.  It was the death of a dream.  But I wished you the best, and all has been well.

Mrs. Scherr:  Yours came out of the blue for me.  I had known you were gone.  My feelings had swung on a giant pendulum for years.  I was stuck for a while, but When I let go, I felt a release.  I wanted you to be happy, but I always wondered if it were ever truly possible.  Now, I can only hope that it is.

To all of you, I wish you joy and happiness.  I love you all.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

The Name Game

So it doesn’t matter how long it’s been since you’ve dated someone.

It doesn’t matter how long it’d been since you saw them last.

It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been married.

There is an emotional impact when you learn that a ex has gotten married.

Back in the Saddle

So, eight days after my accident, I went on my first bicycle ride.

Yesterday when I got home, Jennifer and I ran a couple errands.

We crossed Ashby.  No big deal.

We went to Bay Street to return something for Jennifer, and we had dinner to celebrate.

There was no pain, and I only got nervous the first time a car passed me.

I’ll probably go for a ride on Saturday, and then try biking to work again next week.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

A Postponement

So yesterday was the monthly role-playing game.  Steve hosted in his condo in the City.  I took BART in and walked the six or so blocks to his place.  I was feeling pretty good.

During the game, I sat on his couch next to the dining room table, so that I would have a cushioned seat.  I iced my back twice with a session of heating pad in the middle when things got uncomfortable.  Then afterwards John, Scott, and I walked swiftly back to BART because there were fireworks going off at AT&T Park, and we wanted to beat the Giants fans to the train.

We did just walk, but today I’m a bit stiff.  Probably just due to the total distance.

I wished my mom a happy Mother’s Day, and asked to postpone our Mother’s Day time for one week.  I just didn’t think I’d be very good company.

Then I called my grandmother who’s in the hospital in Kentucky.  She sounded pretty good, and was finishing up lunch.  The fare sounded pretty good with soup, a Benedictine sandwich, and a dietary cheesecake.  A far cry from the Jell-O you tend to hear about.

She asked if I was going to see my mother, and I briefly had to explain my circumstances.  I glossed over them, because I may be stiff, but I’m not in the hospital.  Or nearly 95 years of age.

So Happy Mother’s Day to all mothers out there.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Back to Work

So I’m back in the office today.

I’m learning a few things about my self today.

Opening doors uses a surprising amount of muscles in the back.

Leaning from the chair into a lower drawer also flexes interesting locations in the back.

Also, good posture is always less painful than slouching.

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

The Morning After

So, an update.

I’m sore, but otherwise doing okay.  I slept through the night, and even slept on my back for a few hours.

After some questions from work people, I figured I should say that I never hit my head.  My helmet has no scuffs, so that’s all fine.  I have no road rash, or tears in clothing or shirts.

The only thing that took any damage is my Chrome bag.  Not a whole lot, but you can see in the fabric where it contacted the ground.

So to sum up in GURPS terms: I made my default acrobatics to reduce injury (but did not critically succeed), and the Chrome bag game me a point or two of Damage Resistance against the fall.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012


So, today’s ride home from work was not the best of incidents. (Remember my earlier post and/or read my mom’s post, and buckle up).

I was less than two blocks from home when suddenly I was tumbling over my handlebars.  I tucked and rolled, and hit my back on a parked car.

What had happened was that in a stopped car, a girl had opened the rear door (I’m guessing to get out), and neither she nor her mother saw me.  Then right before I went past, my bike hit the inside of the door, and I went tumbling.

I didn’t hit my head, but I am a little bruised.  My right wrist is a little stiff, and I’m pretty sore along a couple of my lumbars.

The alignment on my bike is a little messed up, and one of the brake handles is askew, but I don’t think the wheels are messed up.

I had a good soak, and took some ibuprofen.  We’ll see how I feel in the morning.

Wheels on Wheels

So, I started something new for me today.  I rode my bike to BART, took BART to Walnut Creek, then rode my bike to the office.

I was semi-surprised at the number of bikes on the train, but it was a pretty enjoyable experience.  My only issue was that I dressed a bit too warmly, and was pretty warm on the train.  The rides themselves were great.

Tonight is when I think I’ll see the better part of the commute when I don’t have to wait at the tunnel to go home.  And then I don’t have to deal with waiting for the bus at the BART station.

Thursday, May 03, 2012

My Over-thruster is Complete

And so tomorrow, I’m going home.

Yeah, About That…

So, I took a look at the length of the previous post, and I thought I should probably mention.  I have a tendency to make long story out of simple ones.

I’ve been told it’s a genetic disorder.

No wait, that’s wrong.

It’s a family trait.

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Game On

So we’ve been doing a parking lot restoration here in Watsonville.  And that’s the kind of thing you subcontract out many of the phases of the job.  Concrete paving for example.

As some will know, I end up talking with the people I’m working with.  I met one of my best friends that way.  He was sitting on a loader in Yerba Buena Island while we were cleaning out lead paint impacted planters, and I saw he had headphones in instead of ear plugs.  And I asked him, “What are you listening to?”  That sparked a conversation that quickly formed our friendship.

So you can understand why I like talking to the subs.

So this time, I’m talking to the guy running the trowel machine in between pours.  He’s telling me about his son, and mentions a game store that he is half-owner of in Fremont.  I ask him if it’s tabletop or electronic, and he says tabletop.  RPGs and board games.  It’s called House of Games.  And I tell him I’ll be sure and check it out when I’ve got some free time on a weekend.

The next weekend, Jennifer and I were both down with being sick, and hermitted watching movies, and moving very little.

Then this past weekend, we were looking for something to do to get out of the house.  I suggested the game store, so we headed out to Fremont.

House of Games is a fun little store.  There’s a lot of selection, but not much for supplements.  I’m guessing if you’re local you can order the supplements, but they’ve most got the main books on the shelves.  As an example, they only had GURPS 4th Edition Characters, and no other GURPS books.

While wandering the shelves, I saw this, and stopped cold.  The Discworld is a series of books I’ve talked about often, and is one of many Jennifer and I read together.  I called her name and just held the box up as she turned the corner.

So we bought it.

We drove home then, and after a best of seven series of Zombie Dice to get us in the mood (I won 4 to 3), we sat down to play our new board game.

Three hours later, we were worn out from having an amazing time.  The game is like any of Terry Pratchett’s books as it builds slow, and then rushes to the end with ever growing excitement and activity.

The game itself is a melding of Monopoly and Risk, with bits of Uno and Mille Bornes thrown in.  Upon completion we immediately decided we needed to find other Discworld readers who we could talk into playing with us.  It’s be a much different game with 4 players instead of just 2.

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