uberreiniger: (Eternity)
A little over a week ago, M. and I took our first ever vacation together. We did so by not leaving our city and by having people visit us. "Staycation" really is a deceptive word though, sort of implying that you're sitting at home doing nothing. Instead, we felt like we had traveled to a faraway place and come back pleasantly worn out.

I actually started the vacation a day early and finished it a day late by going to a pair of concerts. The first one was Fear Factory/Hate Eternal/Kobra and the Lotus and the second one was Suffocation/Exhumed/Jungle Rot/Rings of Saturn/Adimirion the concerts deserve their own post but for now I'll just say they were epic and amazing, even if they both took place at a Kansas City bar that I love to hate.

Our vacation centered around our friends Katrina and Jason coming from Oregon to stay with us for several days. During their stay we introduced them to our favorite forms of local cuisine, and took them to the "must see" sights of Kansas City: Union Station, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, City Market, and the Kansas City Zoo. These are places that we actually don't ever go to because we're too busy living here, so for us it was an exploration of our own home and a chance to view it through the eyes of friends.

Katrina and Jason have been our online friends for many years but this was the first chance for all of us to meet in person. We all got along with each other very well and it seemed really natural just having us all together. On Saturday we were joined by another out-of-town friend, Pearl from Oklahoma. It was our first time meeting her face-to-face as well and Pearl fit in seamlessly with our group. On Saturday night we threw a party which several other friends showed up for. Having bought tons of fresh produce at City Market, Katrina barbecued them along with a variety of meats, and we all had a good time eating, drinking, watching funny Youtube videos, and going on tours of our haunted basement. Pearl stayed the night with us and on Sunday the five of us hit the zoo.

I can never get over how vast the Kansas City Zoo is and we were all dog tired by the end of it. I got a pretty impressive sunburn on my balding head. Pearl left for home and we had planned on having other guests that evening, but one by one they bailed so we cancelled Sunday night's gathering. This turned out o be good because I laid down intending to take an hour's nap, only to pass out until 2am.

By Monday it was time for our friends to return home. We bid them farewell at the airport and M. and I came home where I grilled some more meat and veggies before heading off to that night's Suffocation concert. We both agreed at the end of our vacation that it had felt like we had gone away and come back, so many new and interesting things had happened. It was a great time and we can't wait to return the favor and visit our friends in Oregon.

The only bad part was that I got sick halfway through and have been sick ever since. The cold and sore throat didn't really slow me down during the vacation itself, but in the last few days it's developed into a vicious cough and persistent runny nose. Yuck. Needless to say, this hasn't made my reacclimating to work any easier. But I do feel better for the time away and am getting back to life with a renewed sense of motivation and purpose.

uberreiniger: (Blood Axe)
It's hard to feel motivated to stop and update your blog when you've got a lot going on, just like it's hard to feel motivated to update it when you've got nothing going on. Catch 22. But I finally have a day off where I don't have to be anywhere, (except play rehearsal tonight,) so I thought I'd make a go of it.

Part of what has kept me busy in my off hours is that after years away from tabletop gaming in general, I have finally started GMing again. It's a Pathfinder game, (a.k.a. 3.5 edition Dungeons & Dragons under a new name and publisher,) and it's been an incredible amount of fun so far. Maybe the long break as what I needed because this is the most fun I've had running a game since high school and I think my players are having a good time too. I've got a couple of seasoned veterans but the rest have either neither played a pen-and-paper RPG before, or at least have never played this system. Throw in a GM who is way out of practice and what you get is actually a very fun, laid back group that's really getting into creating a good story together. In the past when I've GM'd games I've always ended up getting burnt out and/or developing writer's block by about the third session but that hasn't happened here. It's a novel feeling and probably the most fun I've had running a game since I was in high school.

My wife surprised me with a really awesome present related to the game. )

Next weekend we have some friends coming into town to stay with us for a few days. I've taken vacation time so we can enjoy their visit. Don't know what all we do, but so far we're planning a party. The night before they arrive two of my favorite bands, Fear Factory and Hate Eternal, are playing a show together so that's something to look forward to. Another band I admire, Suffocation, are playing the night following our friends' departure so I may try to make that happen too.

Music really picks up during the summer time, though. Heart are playing at the Starlight theatre on August 18th and that's one M. and I want to make it to together. A few days before that Amon Amarth and Children of Bodom will also be in town but... they're playing in support of Rob Zombie. I know this probably makes me a terrible metalhead but I have a terrible secret to confess: I think Rob Zombie is just okay. I mean, he's a brilliant man, a clever filmmaker, and can write a good song, but I've never once felt like I just HAD to see him live. Plus, as rabidly as I love Amon Amarth and CoB, I'm not sure I love them enough to pay Rob Zombie ticket prices in order to see them. Does that make me a bad fan?

But what I really have to make happen, no matter how bad it hurts, is the Iron Maiden concert in September. They are most definitely a Bucket List experience for me and I know it's going to be madly expensive, but I have to see them no matter what.

I have lots of other things to look forward to, and lots of other things to be happy and grateful about, but that's enough for one entry, I think.

Burner

Jul. 3rd, 2012 03:13 am
uberreiniger: (Wayfarer)
I try so hard to tolerate it when people I care about say things that are abhorrent. Eventually it always ends the same. They'll say one thing about gays that goes too far, one thing about people not deserving basic decent treatments and necessities that goes too far. Maybe they like to say how disappointed God is with certain people and it goes too far. Finally I have enough of it. I tell them what I think of them. I tell them exactly what kind of people they are. That they don't care about anyone else; that no one who cares about anyone else could say such things. Yet for all their happy evil they're rarely the ones who send me packing. I'm always the one who burns the bridge.

What does that say about me?
uberreiniger: (hanging masks)
The troupe is under a great deal of stress; more than I've seen since I joined it three years ago. That sounds more ominous than I mean for it to. There's just a lot of things to be done this year and many of them are coming down to the last minute. I feel the stress very much myself. This week I need to take out the tent that was given to me, make sure it has everything it needs. I also need to get together groceries and supplies for a week of camping as cheaply as possible.

I'll feel great once I'm out there, but for now this week just feels like a hassle to be endured and suffered through. I'm also completely broke until Thursday, adding to the stress.

I'm using music as my stress reliever. I feel like I sound like shit when I play, but I feel good when I do it, like I'm creating something. That's an important feeling and a necessary one. We're painting the room I use as my music studio so all my gear has been moved to the stair landing. Surprisingly, I'm actually finding this a somewhat better practice space acoustically and ergonomically. Still, it's a landing and I don't intend to be there forever.

Stress has crept into my little musical world too though. My drummer was unable to buy a new drum set like he'd planned. So this kind of puts us back at square one. I guess for now I just keep doing what I'm doing which is writing song. By the time I've got enough for a band to rehearse with hopefully a solution will have presented itself.

The theatre troupe's shows at Lilies are going to be great this year. This has turned into all I do theatrically anymore but I've also found it's really all I need. In a way it's also all I can manage. I'm fulfilling the urge with fellow performers whom are incredibly talented and whom I really like as people and it's just enough to keep me from getting burnt out which happened frequently when I was trying to act "full time." I could never have made acting a career, I realize now. But I'm happy for the role it's played in my life and very grateful for the place in my life it has found.
uberreiniger: (Wayfarer)
So at the Iced Earth concert I did indeed run into my ex-bandmates. I didn't really believe I would yet there they were. They were about twenty feet in front of me the whole time. When Iced Earth's set ended they walked right past me, and I mean within inches. One of them looked directly at me, I nodded and she instantly did the whole "look away really fast and pretend I didn't see you" thing. Later I ran into the other one out in the lobby. I said hi to her and she just stared into space like a wooden Indian, pretending she couldn't see or hear me. I can't decide if I feel pissed at being ignored like that or proud that I'm apparently worth that much effort to ignore.

I also saw my ex-boss who ran me out of my job as a security supervisor years ago. He too looked right at me but I could tell he genuinely didn't recognize me. I have long hair and a beard now so perhaps that's understandable. Plus he always was kind of a clueless douche.

I readily admit that I don't move on from things very well. So spending an evening with a few yards away from three people who've backstabbed me wasn't very fun.

I am trying to focus on the positive, namely that Iced Earth were AWESOME. John Schaeffer, Stu Block, and the gang totally ripped the room apart. I've seen a lot of really good live metal acts these last few years but I think I'm going to have to put Iced Earth in the top five. (The other four being Nightwish, Kreator, Eluveitie, and Nile in case you're wondering.) Most of the songs were from their newest album Dystopia but they played a good selection of older material too such as their self-titled song "Iced Earth" and "Damien" which is my personal favorite song of theirs. Hearing that one live was every bit as amazing as I knew it would be. They also have a ten minute musical interpretation of Dante's Inferno and they played that in its entirety too. And it was freaking SCARY. Color me impressed.

The opening act was a thrash band called Warbringer and they actually weren't too bad. I've listened to a few of their songs online and thought they were just alright but they come off as way stronger live. It might make me go back and re-evaluate what I listened to before.

Iced Earth are co-headlining this tour with Symphony-X who are a progressive metal band. They are very good at what they do but I just have a hard time getting into them for some reason. That and because I have to be up early in the morning, I left a few songs into their set.

There are a lot of selfish, cowardly people and people who just plain have no integrity and I don't know why I keep expecting them to be different, or think they might miss me or regret their bad treatment of me, or even think about it at all. But experiencing really amazing music live I think is worth having to see people you'd rather not see again.
uberreiniger: (Default)
When I actually have things to update about that's when I don't get any time to update. I waited too long to get started on my freelance assignment for the week which left me in a rush to finish it over the course of my two days off. I would have finished it sooner then but I did take a lot of breaks to do things like play WoW and practice on my guitars. I don't regret that at all because it's my days off and I should be able to do something for me, but it did make for a long couple of days.

Now I need spend a fraction of the time on this entry that I wanted to or I'll be let for my day job!

On Saturday our friends Ed and Angie were in town and we got to see them for a few hours. Wound up spending all evening in a Chinese restaurant talking about spirituality. Then we showed them our new house. We don't see them often enough and it was wonderful to do so, really a high point of the last month or so.

I've been writing a lot lately too but that's a whole 'nother topic.

I'd say I'll update more about it all later, but people say that all the time and then they never do it and I don't want to be that person. I do need to finish off the thirty day meme though. I haven't forgotten about that.
uberreiniger: (ICS Vortex)
So, a bass-playing friend of mine who is friends with my former band and actually played with them long ago, just mentioned on Facebook that he is learning the same cover songs I was working on at the time of my departure. With the band's guitarist commenting approvingly.

Now, they do not actually come out and state that he is playing with them but they are not really songs most people would just sit down and randomly decide to learn. The timing is... interesting.

Obviously I shouldn't care. They need a bassist, he's a bassist, and business is business. But at the same time... I dunno, I guess it's kind of like your buddy sleeping with your ex-girlfriend: yeah, technically there's no reason why they can't and it has nothing to do with you but it still feels like a slap just the same.
uberreiniger: (Default)
I'm about to go in for a four-and-a-half hour shift at work tonight. I found out I've got hours at my second job tomorrow night which means Wednesday is the only complete day off I have this week. It's going to feel like a long week, I'm thinking but that's just how things are. I already feel rushed typing this entry because I spent too long practicing the bass guitar before I started it. *sigh*

My latest short story, From the Bedside Diary of Brisins De Mar just got sent off to the publisher. It is my hope that it will make its public debut very soon. Naturally I will be providing information on how to acquire it as soon as it is out there to acquire!

Was hoping I'd have time to do some more writing before I scooted off to work but that may not be feasible. Even a sentence would be nice...

The week got off to a great start with a wonderful conversation earlier this week with [livejournal.com profile] watersaredeep. I don't get the chance to chat with people on the phone very often so it was a wonderful treat. Hopefully the four hours at work tonight will pass quickly and I can spend some time with my wife before bed time. I hope everyone else's Monday is just as busy but in a good way like mine has been so far.
uberreiniger: (theatre)
So the lost friend from a few days ago? E-mailed me today, and not to say what I expected. It was an apology, and the acknowledgment that while things would never be as they once were, there would be parting with no animosity. Parting as friends, as it were, even if that's a strange way of thinking of it for me.

I'll be honest, I was relieved. I guess this is what that "closure" everyone is always talking about feels like. Never really gotten that from any situation in my life. It's a novel and relaxing feeling.

I have been very prolific by my standards as far as writing goes lately. My New Year's resolution was to write every day and so far I am sticking to it. Here's a brief run down of projects, in case you care.

-D&D campaign using the "new and improved" Pathfinder rules system published by Paizo games. I'm creating my own game world for it to take place in. It's strange but in all my years of playing I've stuck to the game's published settings and never made one of my own, yet I've never been satisfied with the published stuff available. This campaign isn't even ambitious: no saving the world, just questing and fighting some monsters. Yet the world-building feels really important and really fun. Even if I don't get enough players to put it to use it's still been an awesome exercise. Maybe I can use the world in fiction if nothing else? Or publish the modules on-line. Who knows?

-New erotica novella. Well, not technically new since I've been made two false starts on it before, but this time things are clicking. Once again, I feel I was too ambitious with it before and was trying to force the story to go in a certain direction. This time I'm letting it take its own shape and writing it feels less like a chore. It's another Apocalypse Woman story; again not a direct sequel to the main work. But it does let me play with some areas and cultures that are mentioned in the main work but are not important to its ongoing meta plot. Of course it will be sexy, but the main character is far more of a submissive than the previous heroines who even when they're in the hands of aggressive lovers are still pretty take-charge kind of gals. Again, it's all about playing with things I want to depict in the world but don't fit into the main plot. Hopefully people who have read the first one will like it and won't be like, "Why doesn't he quit fooling around and get back to the main story!"

-Comedy sketch for Champagne Players; an acting troupe I perform with at SCA events. This will be my second year performing with them and my first time writing. I'm nervous because I really respect these people and want to deliver a quality scene but I think I'll be okay. Long ago I had an idea for William Shakespeare as a time-traveling super hero. At the rate I write I doubt I'll ever write the novel so it was time to adapt it into sketch comedy format. Now, for a working title. Shakespeare In Time: The Beginning or Bard Force: Origins? Decisions, decisions...

I need more hours in a day. At least not having that friend drama is bound to free some time up.
uberreiniger: (Default)
Hello. Today I'm posting on behalf of [livejournal.com profile] arphaxaad who, like so many of us disappeared the way of Facebook long ago. But with his permission I am reposting an e-mail he sent to me. He is having some very urgent financial problems and is in need of some help. But instead of donations you will be buying something for your money.

He describes his situation here. )

He is a wonderful person whose baked goods are the stuff of legend. Order some and you won't be disappointed. I'm still deeply grateful to all the people who helped me when I was in dire money straits last year and in helping my friend out I feel like maybe I'm giving something back. I know I'll certainly be placing an order in the next few days. Thanks for reading. Help if you can.
uberreiniger: (theatre)
I started the music meme to get me to blog every day. An unforeseen consequence was that it made me lazy about blogging anything else! A lot's been going on.

Thursday was a very busy day. I had to get up early (for me) to go meet [livejournal.com profile] stitchedsutures , her boyfriend, and a few friends of theirs to visit the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. I hadn't been in almost a year and hadn't seen [livejournal.com profile] stitchedsutures in closer to five years so it was a trip of reforging old bonds. The Nelson has several pieces on display that I've never seen including an honest-to-Egyptian-gods mummy sarcophagus and an actual mummy. Being an ancient world aficionado this made my day. Lots of other pieces that were new to me or hadn't been out for a while were to be seen as well. Although it was balanced by Caravaggio's awe-inspiring John the Baptist painting being out on loan for an exhibition in Europe or something.

After the museum we noshed at a place in Westport called The Record Bar - an establishment whose motif as you might guess is vinyl records. The food was good and the time spent was excellent. After that I bummed around Westport for a couple of hours and then was off to rehearsal.

Friday I did nothing but play Dragon Age most of the day. Not very productive, but fun. I gained the respect of the game's angry, sulking, giant-Klingon-samurai guy and got him his sword back. And the French ninja/nun/peaceful hippie is now my lesbian lover. Trust me, it all makes sense when you play the game.

Saturday and Sunday I worked. My workplace is still about as organized as a monkey fucking a football. Glad to be on a stretch of days off again now!

Today was my first visit to the SCA Lilies' War event and my troupe's first performance of Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew. Our audience was small but our performance was excellent and the audience's reaction to it better than we could have hoped. Considering that our lead actress fell and sprained her ankle two hours before curtain and that this performance was our first time using props, costumes, AND some of the blocking, I think things went pretty damn good.

The reason I am home now blogging instead of still out there partying with my mates is because my dental problems flared up again, causing me serious pain. I'm off tomorrow and there's no performance so I'm going to see if I can get into the dentist, money be damned. I've been trying to tough it out until after the play was over but something has got to be done.

So if you're still with me that's what I've been doing. My mouth has calmed down for now. I'm hoping I can have a nice evening at home without any more episodes.
uberreiniger: (dead music (iconspirit))
[Error: unknown template qotd]Book: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - I read this after nearly all of my friends assured me that it was the funniest book ever written. After one hundred pages of waiting for it to be funny and for some semblance of a plot to actually appear I gave up.

Movie: Anything with Jason Statham. Which doesn't make sense because I love action, sword and sorcery, crazy martial arts, and tough-talking, punk-as-fuck British/Australian guys. Yet I've never had even the slightest desire to see any movie he is in. I'm sure I'd enjoy them if I saw them, but I just can't work up the interest to make the effort. I admire the hell out of the guy, though. He's found one thing, does it well, fills a commercial need, and very likely laughs all the way to the bank.

Band: I think my friends would be more surprised if there was a popular band I DID like.

Food: Grits, although my wife vows that one day she will change this.

TV Show: Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. I caught a couple of episodes from the second season a while back and was pleasantly surprised how much it had improved. (Lead singer from Garbage as a T-1000 ftw.) But they're still not off the hook for the abysmal first two episodes of the series, in which a metal Terminator head bouncing through a time rift was only one of many flaws.

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uberreiniger: (Default)
uberreiniger

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