Obligatory Renovation Update

So I’m going to try and resist posting a plethora of updates about my games room renovations. I’d rather just show the end result when that comes about and be able to contrast the before with the after. I feel it’ll have more impact.

As it stands now, we’re still in the demolition stage, though we’re pretty sure that we’ve torn everything up that we need to and barring a few small tweaks here and there we should start the actual construction right away… well, once we do another dump run or six. Hard to believe one room can generate so much garbage and construction waste.

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Let The Games Begin!

A little over a year and a half ago, my wife and I started discussing what we were going to do with our basement. As it stood, it was a hodgepodge of tool rooms, odd shaped (and cramped) bedrooms and the world’s worst bathroom. It was in dire need of an overhaul.

We discussed options and talked about tearing down walls and expanding the master bedroom. We dickered back and forth on which way we would go and what we’d do. Ultimately her practicality won out.

We would renovate the old small bedroom that I was using as an office and the tool room and turn it into a new master bedroom. We’d revamp the bathroom and laundry room and we would turn the old master bedroom into a new office/nerd cave. It was really the only concession I got on the whole plan and I think I only got it because, I said I wanted a secret door in the bookshelf.

Last winter we tore into it and started on our master bedroom. We finished it sometime in March or April and it was glorious to have space to walk around in.

Summer came and we left the project alone to focus on the garage and other outdoor projects. However, we both knew the Stark motto was true: Winter is Coming.

Christmas was the usual hectic gong show but now that it’s over, we decided to get stuck in. As we had decided to leave the bathroom and laundry room for last due to the “fun”, finicky plumbing and tiling bits, the next job was my nerd cave

Go! Go! Gadget Sledgehammer!

Eventually, it’s supposed to look something like this:

I’m hoping we’ll be done sometime in March or early April. I can’t wait! Mainly because then I don’t have to lug 40kgs of Star Wars books all over creation every time we game.

I’ll keep you posted!

Unexpected Downtime

Well, I didn’t expect that. Firefox crashed while I was updating a wordpress plugin… and when I came back to the site, it was deleted. I managed to eventually recover a backup from December 9th, but it was a last ditch effort on my part. I had very little hope of it succeeding.

For the two of you who even noticed, sorry for the interruption. For the rest of you. Carry on!

I was going to blog tonight about the latest renovations going on in the house and progress on the Nerd Cave but all my time was spent trying to fix the error.

I shall endeavour to update you tomorrow. Until then, good night!

Signal Disruption

Oh look. There goes all my plans for regular posting. It’s been about a month since I last posted and it irritates me that all my good intentions and plans were derailed. I blame the holiday season. Working retail at Christmas messes with my routines, my sleep habits and my time.

Normally I’d come home from work, cook dinner, tidy up and then ensure the kids did their chores/homework. Once they are settled, I’d then disappear downstairs to my cave and type up something here, paint a miniature or work on my Star Wars game. Since the beginning of November though, I’ve not done any of those things. My RPG stuff sits stagnant in the bag I use to carry it all and has been there since the beginning of October. My paints sit similarly unused and obviously the blog has been silent for the past month as well.

There’s hope that as we near Christmas and the retail nightmare that is my life, subsides to little more than a bad dream I will get back to a much more regular routine.

In the meantime, have fun without me. I have laundry to fold.

A Dream of a Thousand Cats

My cat is an asshole.

I was supposed to go and see Neil Gaiman tonight, but my cat decided that I would be spending time at home with a tweaked back.

The little #&$@!! tripped me at lunch time in the kitchen today. I managed to catch myself but the effort twinged something painfully in my back. Then, one of the day home kids pulled a stupid and I had to haul him up from where he’d wedged himself in between the wall and the bed, further exacerbating the issue to the point where I’m hobbling and immobile.

You have no idea how much I hate and disappointment I have flowing through my veins right now. If Palpatine ran out of hate lightning, I could easily refill his supply about 1000 times over and still have some to spare.

This was something I was really looking forward to. Beyond anything else this year and it all comes crashing down because of a stupid cat.

Somewhere, Bast is laughing.

Excelsior!

One of my heroes passed away today.

Stan Lee shaped a lot of my early life without even knowing it. Through the pages of Spider-Man, The X-Men and the rest of the comics that make up the Marvel Universe I learned to differentiate right from wrong. I learned that good guys win. Most importantly, I learned that with great power, comes great responsibility.

He told stories about heroes. Heroes with super-normal powers. Those heroes were flawed. They struggled against adversity. Those heroes fought for a better world. Sometimes they stumbled, but they never stopped fighting the good fight.

I remember watching some mid-80s Incredible Hulk cartoon with Stan’s iconic “True Believers” narration and being instantly hooked. I watched the cartoon because it was cool and it was the Hulk, but I went back every week for more because Stan’s voice over made everything cooler.

He will be missed.

‘Nuff Said.

7-Day Book Cover Challenge: Day 8 – The Honourable Mentions

Here’s the problem with challenging a creative type like myself with making a list about something I’m passionate about. It won’t stop. Limit myself to seven books? I’d rather cut off my good right arm. Like I said at the beginning, the number of books that have influenced me may be closer to seven hundred rather than seven and while paring it down to seven was challenging, there were definitely a few that I left out.

I purposefully left out a number of books that my friends had already posted, even though they meant a lot to me because I didn’t want to dilute their contributions by saying ” Oooh! Oooh! Me too!”. There were also quite a few books that I debated over for various reasons and while they influenced me, and were definitely among my favourites, they have been supplanted by the books that made the list.

This list is by no means comprehensive. I may revisit this theme again in the future and go a little deeper down the rabbit hole of my favourite authors and/or books but in the meantime here is a glimpse of a few more books that orbit the being that is me.


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Day 7

And so we come to the final day of the challenge. As they say, you should always save the best for last. To that end, I give you…

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

This is definitely, by far, my favourite book and series in recent memory. The style is a retrospective story within a story somewhat along the lines of Scheherazade. Sometimes it becomes nested stories within stories within stories. Rather than having to tell a story to prevent themselves from being killed. The main character, Kvothe, tells the story of his life to a chronicler, telling him it will take 3 days (something unheard of). This is day 1.

Kvothe, is a prodigal musician and arcanist (read: sorcerer). He is self-confident, humanly fallible, and wholly believable. He is a character that lives, breathes and steps right off the page, fully formed.

The magic is understated, more steampunk science than sorcery. It works in this setting

The main draw is the story itself. It sucks you in like nothing else. Rothfuss has a way with words that makes you believe you can feel the air move around you like a whisper or feel the force of a whip crack.

I wait “patiently” for the third book in the trilogy. Is it here yet?

Day 6

Sorcerers it is…

Pawn of Prophecy by David & Leigh Eddings

I had an extremely hard time deciding between this and Raymond Feist’s Magician as today’s book. Both books have an almost equal hold on me for similar reasons. Ultimately I went with this one, because I read it first and that counts for something right?

Pawn of Prophecy and the whole series of books that followed were always a fun read. It was the first “series” of books that I read (I don’t count Lord of the Rings as a series, as it really is just one big book split 3 ways). It was my first chance at watching a character develop over time, and grow through the series. The characters within became parts of my life and because I knew them so well, they helped me identify things about myself that I didn’t quite understand. They really were the perfect companion for a dorky kid stumbling through puberty.

I loved the system of magic. The Will and the Word. It’s how magic should always be in my mind. Simple. No fancy scrolls or incantations. Focus your will, say the word to release your will. Just don’t try to delete something from existence. The world has a Conservation of Matter clause that kicks back pretty hard if you try to break it.

Like all books do, it does have its flaws,  (Namely that the whole 2nd series is the same as the first, just everyone is… older and has levelled up a few times), but for a young reader’s first steps into the great beyond, you can’t go wrong.

Tomorrow is the last day of this silly little challenge. I’m going to have to go out in style.  Tomorrow, we’ll talk about Names…