Monday, February 12, 2007

A Quiz for Fun

Just thought I'd try this...

Take My Quiz on

Can you Ace my quiz?
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Zierath Alliance

I am very blessed. I have a lot of good, talented friends who believe in what I am doing. It is wonderful to have people to bounce ideas off of and who get excited in my created worlds.

I have so much that I am working on. For Castle Zierath, I have two novels mostly written, and have been working on a third for about a year and a half. Having troubles finishing, but it's coming along.

I have hundreds of pictures that I've drawn or others have drawn for me, and I then scan and paint. Here's an example by one of my very talented former students. This is one of the last ones that I have finished painting.

I need to create a schedule for myself and then stick to it. I'm thinking of a schedule kind of like this:
Monday Nights: City of Heroes Night first with Griffin (and Raven, eventually) and then with Meta Forces.
Tuesday Nights: Work on writing and editing Castle Zierath novels.
Wednesday Nights: Work on Webpage and Writing Guidelines. Then play City of Heroes with the Cult of Mu.
Thursday Nights: Write in CZ novels, and then watch CSI live.
Friday Nights: Work on artwork
Saturdays: When home: Work on something CZ way for at least an hour somehow.
Sundays: When home: Work on something CZ way for at least an hour somehow.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007


I frequently forget how much my life centers around technology. Most of my hobbies are now centered around technology: my artwork and writing are on computer. I play City of Heroes almost every day. I keep in contact with my friends via the internet.

When that technology breaks down, it's a very bad thing. Case in point, the database I have been working on for my work for the past 9 years. It's morphed and changed, but I've managed to get all of our alumni, staff, and current students into it. I had dozens of queries and reports, lists and labels, searching abilities, and more at the touch of my keyboard. (all self taught; haven't taken an Access class, so lots of trial and error).

I went to get on my database today, and it said 'Access has experienced an unexpected error.' I don't know what the state of my database is. It says the data is still there, as in the tables and queries, but the forms and reports are gone. It went from a 19 mb file to a 3.3 mb file.

After a brief time of panic and profanity, I went and checked the last time I had backed up the database on my laptop. It was January 20th, 2007, so it's not going to be bad, but still...

Technology is wonderful when it works, and I love it when you can solve a problem, but when something happens where you lose a lot of work, it's very frustrating.

I still bemoan what I call the great crash of 1999. I lost 100 some hours worth of work (mainly artwork), and I recently figured out I lost all the pictures from Kath and my honeymoon to DC from 1999. Obviously, I've learned since then to save frequently.

Which reminds me...I need to save the 2006 pictures onto a cd...

Friday, February 02, 2007

How I Met My Wife

I’ve been dating my wife for almost 12 years, and we’ve been married 8.5 years now. The way we met was amusing. We first met each other at a Halloween party. She had moved to Minneapolis the very year I left. I was working at a tiny town in western Iowa, and everyone my age was either married with kids or hung around in bars. I didn’t have much in common with the married families, and I don’t enjoy hanging around in bars; I can’t block out noise of other people’s conversations. My students will tell you, I hear a lot more than they think that I can. In bars, I hear so much that everything is a dull roar, including the person who is right in front of me.

Anyhoo, since I didn’t find any of my own kind (i.e. gaming nerds) in Remsen, my social life was still up in the Twin Cities. Once a month, I’d head back up there. Over Halloween, I went to a party of a friend of mine. This friend is a lesbian, and she has some very attractive lesbian friends, so when I saw Kath dressed as a Greek goddess, I though, “nice looking redhead. Gotta be a lesbian.”

Yup, when I first met my wife, I thought she was a lesbian.

We really got to know each other thanks to my high school friend Nick. He started to run a Vampire the Masquerade game, and both Kath and I were playing. In the first gaming session, Nick’s sister Laura and I were playing out a roleplaying piece where her Chinese princess vampire and my Eskimo vampire were trying to communicate in broken English. At one point, Ang Mei (Laura’s character) attacked my Wendell Gogh. Wendell grabbed her wrists and growled. Kath at that point broke in with saying “What hell wrong?” I took her statement and ran with it, creating one of the most memorable roleplaying interactions that my gaming groups have ever had.

Kath and I clicked from there on out. And almost 12 years later (our first real date was April Fool’s Day going to see “The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill But Came Down a Mountain”) I am still madly in love with her.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Thinking of Thanksgiving in February? Sheesh.

One of the things Kath and I planning is a trip out to the southwest in November. Yeah, I know, I'm planning things way in advance, but I'm finding more and more I need to plan things pretty far in advance.

With my mom in Pheonix now, we are really looking forward to it. We're planning to AmTrak it out there (best way to travel distances, I think.) This time, we're planning on a sleeper car. 10 years ago, I could have done a trip just in the seats, but the past trip from DC to LaCrosse convinced me that in spite of a young spirit and mind, the body definitely needs the sleeper car. Mom will pick us up in Flagstaff, and then we'll go to the Grand Canyon, rent a cabin, and mule ride down into the Canyon.

This is what really triggered this blog entry. To ride down into the canyon on a mule, you need to weigh less than 200 lbs. Which means, since I way about 220, I need to lose 30 pounds by that time. Yeah, 30 lbs. Give myself a little bit leeway for whatever I carry. (like camera, waterbottles, sketch pad, food, writing know the basics for me.)

The thing is, I have weighed 190 lbs since I was a Junior in college. 20 years ago. (which is mind boggling in itself.) So I have a lot of work to do to convince my body that 190 lbs is a good weight. I think the next 10 lbs won't be too bad, but the next 20 is going to be nie unto impossible.

Wish me luck. I think I'm going to need it.