Sunday, March 30, 2008

Make Your Own TV Season!

We don't watch much live television any more.
We had cable but dumped it for DirecTV.
We dropped DirecTV for NetFlix.
Our TV picks up only the local NBC, Fox, ABC and PBS stations - no CBS, CW or WB.
The only cable/satellite channel we miss is BBCAmerica.

The only shows that get regularly watched live are Heroes, Chuck and The Office.
Heroes and Chuck got delayed until the fall season by the writer's strike but The Office returns April 10th!

Thanks to NetFlix and so many TV series coming out on DVD, we have decided to make our own television season.
It's easier to watch one episode during dinner than a whole movie.
We have worked out way through Mr. Bean, Black Adder, Love For Lydia, Monarch of the Glen, and the new Robin Hood.
Shows that started and were cancelled after only one episode include Pink Lady and Jeff (a very bad 70s variety show) and The Mighty Isis.

Our current schedule:
Sunday: Masterpiece Theatre on Disc - currently showing Danger: UXB
Monday: The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles
Tuesday: unassigned
Wednesday: unassigned
Thursday: The Office (when the new shows start we will watch the current one, then an old episode)
Friday: probably never to be assigned - every other week is Dungeons & Dragons gaming night.
Saturday: Arrested Development

Monday, March 17, 2008

Odds and Ends

Just a quick post with some bits of news from the last couple of weeks.

First Robin of the Spring sighted in Caledonia on Tuesday March 4th

Two of my favorite comic book author/artists passed on this last month.
Steve Gerber, creator of Howard the Duck and the Mysterious Man-Thing died of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis at the age of 60.
Dave Stevens, creator of the Rocketeer died of leukemia at the age of 52.
The Rocketeer is probably my favorite comic-book adaptation movie as it was very close to the look and storyline of the original. It also has a great soundtrack by James Horner which included arrangements of "When Your Lover Has Gone" and "Begin the Beguine" that WOKY used to play.

Munster's coming to a close!
CompuCom has hired a new person to take over the computer support at Rockwell's Munster facility. She is starting next week so we will both be there March 26th and 27th and then I'm finished!!!!!!!

Vacation? What's that?
I hope to take off the week of April 7th to do stuff around the house, get my car worked on, and possibly have the first meeting of the Shorewood Concert Band board and do this year's Reunion Newsletter. I'll let everyone know soon if this is going to happen.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Larisa's got a home!

Our first foster family of kittens for 2007 arrived on March 17th. A family here in Racine was moving back to Serbia and could not take their female cat, Larisa, who had just given birth to 3 girls and a boy.
Here are the girls: Natasha, Svetlana and Tatiana:

and here is Boris:
Larisa was such a good mother that our friend Karen, a cat breeder, brought over one of her pure-bred kittens to stay and be socialized. He was very small and soon was named "Little Tyke":
After the kittens were grown and adopted Larisa was fixed and went to live in the Kindred Kitties adoption center at Carolyn's House. The volunteers there quickly found out the Larisa does not like other cats, and she was picking on them and getting into fights.
When we heard this we volunteered to let Larisa live in our upstairs Bedroom/Bathroom area where she has been since last September or so.
We have been keeping our sweater boxes on the inside of the door and blankets and pillows on the outside because she would hiss and poke at our cats.
Since we adopted Gitana it has gotten worse, with the 2 of them going at it nearly every morning somewhere between 4 and 6 am!
Michelle has been taking her to Petco and Cat Shows on the weekends to try and find a home where she will be an only cat.
After several possibilities, it has finally worked out.
She is going to be living with a single guy in Kenosha and where she can be the ruler of her own domain!

Good Luck Queen Larisa!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

London Administration Building, Part 2

I have recently started playing with Google Earth again and decided to get a screen shot of last post's building.
There is an arrow pointing to it, with Tower Bridge to the right and the Tower of London to the top.

Monday, March 10, 2008

London Administration Building

This is the City of London's Administration Building, where the Mayor of London has his offices. It is on the South Bank of the Thames, just west of Tower Bridge.

I think this would be a *very* cool place to have an office, with views of the Tower of London, Tower Bridge, the HMS Belfast and Big Ben/the Houses of Parliment.

This photo was taken from the observation deck on top of Tower Bridge in January 2005.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Probably the best since 1950

Belgaufra Belgian Waffles

Photo taken Brussels, Belgium, 2003

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Spink, founded 1666

Photo taken in London, 2003

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Me and E. Gary Gygax

The coverage of Gary Gygax's death is just amazing to me. Not only are there tributes on all the gaming websites and in several webcomics I have also see stories in the New York Times, on BBC, NPR, Popular, slashdot, and even the Northwest Indiana Times.

My favorite so far has been from the LOLCats:

Gary Gygax Memorial Cat

I think I first became aware of the name Gary Gygax in 1977 when Peter Nelson got the basic "Blue Box" Dungeons & Dragons set from his uncle for Christmas. We spent our traditional New Year's Eve with them and he handed me the box and told me he wanted to play that night and I had to be "DM". I spent an hour or two reading then we five kids started exploring The Keep on the Borderlands. After creating characters they entered the dungeon and after checking every 10 feet for traps they got to the first encounter with a couple of kobolds. I then had to stop the game for about 30 minutes while I tried to figure out how fighting worked!

Here are my original (well used) First Edition books:

This is the title page from the Monster Manual:

Let's zoom in on the lower left corner:

In 1986 my friends and I on the UW-Platteville campus got an official, recognized gaming club started so we could use rooms in the Student Center on the weekends to game in. In 1988 the "Platteville Gamer's Association" held "Plattecon Beta" our second gaming convention, and we had Gary come as guest of honor. I got my book signed but I didn't get to play in the dungeon he ran. I did watch him Dungeon Mastering, which was a lot of fun. I saw him a couple of times at Gen Con over the years, before it moved to Indianapolis from Milwaukee.

So long Gary, and thanks for everything!