Saturday, July 6, 2013

Games, Friends & a Masquerade

So I got both of my buds addicted to Candy Crush last night. So this morning we spent a good hour lying in my bed just chilling and playing Candy Crush together. I then went and made biscuits and gravy for breakfast. It was a pretty awesome morning just hanging with my bros.. We were heading down to North Hollywood around 10:30am for a Birthday lunch for our friend Jes at 11:30. So we spent the next hour or so getting ready to leave.

We got to the Pitfire Grill but the time was pushed back a half hour so we just hung out and played some ping pong before more folks started to arrive. It was a fun lunch, lots of friends showed up. It was nice catching up with some that I hadn't seen in a while.

On our way home we stopped by Men's Wearhouse to pick up Chris' tux.. it did arrive... Yay!!! We also had Wienerschnitzel for lunch as it's one of Chris' favorite fast foods (as well as Robert's and mine) and they don't have them in Montana.

Afterwards we went back to my place and once again just hung out and enjoyed each others company. We watched Despicable Me as Chris had never seen it and we were hoping to see the sequel tomorrow before Chris left. It's such a fun movie and the more I watch it the more I enjoy it.

Both guys had plans tonight. Robert had a date so he left around 5pm. While I helped Chris get ready for his event The Labyrinth of Jareth. He was surprising our friend Jes who was also attending tonight. I've wanted to go to this masquerade for years now but one thing or another has always kept me from it. This time around it was finances. Anyways I helped Chris get into his tux and Assassin Creed accessories. He looked pretty awesome and I know he was happy with the end results. I even came up with a solution to keeping the Assassin Creeds emblem attached to his cummerbund.

I then drove him down to downtown Los Angeles where the event was taking place. Traffic wasn't that bad and I managed to get him there just a little after the 8pm opening.

I picked up some dinner and went back home. It was weird to be alone in my house, I mean I'm always alone in my house but the past four days I have had one to two other folks crashing here and you quickly forget that feeling of being alone, until you are alone again.

Luckily for me Robert got back to my place around 1am. We talked briefly about his date before crashing. Chris was out partying the night away and going to crash elsewhere.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Bros, Buffy & Webseries

Robert, Chris and I got up around 8am and got ready for our day. We headed out to iHop for some breakfast before making our way back to my house. Robert was joining us for the weekend. First thing we did when we got to Santa Clarita was find a Men's Warehouse as Chris needed to rent a tux for a party on Saturday. With one day notice they couldn't guarantee that the tux would be ready by tomorrow but Chris took a chance. The lady took his measurements and he left a deposit.. all we can do now is keep our fingers crossed that it comes in tomorrow morning.

We headed back to my place and crashed. Robert and I wanted to finish up our Buffy rewatch/1st time as we only had four more episode left for the series. Chris was cool with watching even though he's never seen Buffy.. he wanted to be part of our Buffy and Bros and what better time to join us then at our final Buffy and Bro viewing.

We started with with S7 Ep 19 "Empty Places" The citizens of Sunnydale flee en masse and Sunnydale becomes a ghost town. Willow uses magic to get information from the police on Caleb, and Spike and Andrew leave to pursue a lead. Buffy confronts the group and demands that they make better choices, and reveals her plans for another attack, at which point the group pass a vote of no confidence in Buffy. Buffy leaves and Faith reluctantly becomes the new leader.

A good episode.. everyone losing faith in Buffy has been building up the past few episodes. It was nice to see Faith take control of the group. Spike and Andrew were great comedy relief.. they make a fun duo.

Then we moved onto S7 Ep 20 "Touched" A depressed Buffy is comforted by Spike while the Scoobies capture and interrogate a Bringer. Faith decides on a plan.

Another good episode.. I really dislike "emo" Buffy so I'm glad it only last this episode. Faith and Robin taking a tumble in the sack would seem to go along with Faith's personality. I liked that Spike berated everyone for throwing Buffy out. They all deserved a good talking to. Faith taking the girls into a trap was nice and Buffy realizing what she has to do to fight Caleb and finds the  scythe.

And the second to last episode was S7 Ep 21 "End of Days" The stage is set for the the final battle with The First.

This episode was pretty much a set up for the finale that was about to come. Buffy rescues the potentials and Faith after the trap. She is leader again. They find out that the scythe was made by a group of women for the slayer. I read that the scythe was introduced in Joss' comic book Fray (about a future Slayer) so it was nice to see it here in the TV series. I liked the final battle between Caleb and Buffy with the help of Angel. I liked that Spike is the Champion that Angel was talking about, that he has a bigger role in the apocalypse.

And finally we watched the final episode of Buffy The Vampire Slayer S7 Ep 22 "Chosen" depicting the events leading to and including the final battle between the Potential Slayers, organized by Buffy and her friends and The First Evil.

A great ending to a fantastic series. I loved the idea of Buffy/Willow taking the power that was used to create the scythe and giving it to all the girls/women who were/are potential Slayers all around the world. Now there are hundreds of Slayer to fight evil. The final battle was epic. I remember when I first watched this 10 years ago and Anya dying so matter of factly caused an uproar from the fans. But like with most of Joss' deaths, life happens.. sometimes people die not in a blaze of glory, some die fighting and it's over in a matter of seconds. I was sad that she died as I always loved Anya.

Overall is was a fantastic rewatch, I hadn't seen most of this series since it originally aired over ten years ago. It was fun being able to share this series with my best bud Robert. He loved the series which makes watching it again even better.

We're not sure what we are going to move on to next... There are so many great scifi/fantasy TV series that I would love to share with Robert.. .Angel, Smallville (only seen first 2 seasons), Babylon 5 (only seen first season), Farscape, X-Files, the list goes on an on. So stay tuned to find out what we pick next for our Rewatch/1st time viewings.

After watching Buffy Robert, Chris and I started working on the webseries that Chris and I are writing. We have six episodes written and the three of us went through them to punch them up a bit. I wanted to include some more "slap stick" in them. In the end we found out that they had a good deal of slapstick in them already but we did make some tweaks as we read them out loud to each other.

Another awesome day with two of my most favorite people in the world. Wish everyday could be spent with these two guys. 

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Friends, Fireworks & Fun

Got up around 8am and jumped online to check emails and such, Chris was up as well and I found out later that he had already gone for a run. We made our traditional biscuits and gravy for breakfast and then headed out to my buddy Will's parents place out in Rancho Palos Verdes for a 4th of July celebrations. On our way down it dawned on me that we would drive by Robert's place so I texted him to see if he wanted Chris and I to pick him up for the party. He did so we stopped by his place and grabbed him. Our next stop was our friend Rupert's house. He left his wallet at my place last Sunday after the Marian Call concert. We had to make a slight detour to get to his place but he couldn't drive unless he had his license. We then stopped by a grocery store as Chris wanted to pick up some steaks and then finally we stopped at Bev Mo to pick up some alcohol.

We were now ready to get to the party. We made our way up the windy road. I knew Will's parent lived in a nice house overlooking Long Beach but I had no idea how awesome it was going to be. We arrived and parked and our friend Brett and Doug were already there. We unloaded and I got to met Will's Dad & Mom. Now I've known will for many many years and he's talks about his parents to me and vice verse all the time, but this is the first time I actually got to meet them and I have to say they did not disappoint. They were friendly, sweet, funny and just loving people. It's as if we've been friends forever. I see why Will is the way he is.. totally makes sense now.

We finished unloading and saying hi to everyone. It was hot so we changed into our swimming shorts and jumped in the pool. At first it was just Chris and I, then Brett joined us, then Robert and finally Doug. Kim sat in the lawn chair and Will and his parents finished getting things ready. Soon more and more people arrived. I knew about half the folks. We ate all day long, they had a ton of fruit, chips, cookies and veggies for snacks and they would BBQ sausages, veggies, chicken, and ribs throughout the day.  We drank ale and beer most of the day.

We went into the pool several times throughout the day. One of these times Will introduced us to a game called "Toothpick". You take a toothpick and place it between your toes and then jump into the deep end of the pool and release it. Then a group of six or seven of us stand on the outside trying to visually find the toothpick and when you do you have to jump in and while you are jumping in you have to grab the toothpick on your way in. You can't search for it or grab on your way up. It's tough but a ton of fun. I only manage to get it three times but Chris and Will were neck n' neck and in the end Chris got to 10 first.

We shot a BB gun outback. We were shooting some cups and cans.. Will shot both a cup and a can and it took me to my third try but I did it... I shot a can as well. I think we were the only two people who actually hit something.

Becca came to the back to tell me that Will wants to see me out front so I go out there and he points to a house that's only a few hundred yards away and who do I see there on the back porch waving at me.. my friend Ben who I used to work with. He lives just around the corner from Will's parents. We actually drove over to his house and checked it out. It was good seeing Ben.

Once back at Will's parents place the sun had gone down and the fireworks had begun. Will told me that we'd be able to see a few different fireworks going off.. he wasn't kidding. We say hundreds of fireworks going off. There were several big events like the Queen Mary in Long Beach and Disneyland and Home Depot Center but there were a ton of private fireworks going off and we could see them all.. it was pretty amazing.

Chris grilled his steaks and several of us enjoyed a steak dinner. The party started to come to an end. When I first got to Will's, Chris, Robert and I intended on staying the night as I won't ever drink and drive. But Robert was having trouble with his contact lens in his right eye and forgot to bring his contact stuff and wanted to go home, so I stopped drinking a few hours before we left. Robert stopped before me so when it came time to leave I was sober but still didn't want to drive so Robert drove. We went back to Robert's place to crash for the night.

Overall it was a fantastic day and a great celebration of America's birthday. Will and his parents were fantastic hosts and we couldn't have asked for a better place to see a ton of fireworks.


Wednesday, July 3, 2013

A Good Day!!

I started my day with some LOTRO play before heading out to Burbank and picking up one of my favorite people in the world, Chris. He was flying in for the long extended Fourth of July weekend. He's flight got in around 4pm.. I waited for him at the baggage claim and as soon as I saw him walking up I had to go over and give him a big hug and he return the hug by squeezing me even tighter. It was a good hug, lasted a few minutes. I miss this guy so much even though we talk via facebook, skype, google almost everyday, it's not the same as having him here in person.

We decided to avoid traffic back to my place and instead went to Gordon Biersch for some late lunch/dinner. Afterwards we went over to the AMC theater and watched Monsters University. I've been wanting to see this movie since it came out. Loved Monsters Inc and knew I would just love Monsters University and I did. It was fun seeing how these two guys became best friends. Young Mikey is adorable and reminds me of me when I was young (always the smallest and no one ever paid attention to me). I enjoyed the story, it was funny, touching, and had a lot of heart. Is it better then the first one. I don't think so, the first one if a classic and this one can become a classic with more viewings. It's diffidently a hit and I can't wait to pick it up on blu-ray and watch it again and again. I give Monsters University a solid A.

After the movie we headed back to my place but first picked up some food for breakfast and some snacks. We hung out for a few more hours before calling it a night.. we have a big day ahead of us tomorrow.. should be a blast.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

House Maintenance

Today I cleaned up the rest the house, looked like a bomb went off in the kitchen. My buddy Chris was flying in from Montana and my buddy Robert was coming over for the four day weekend so I wanted the place to look good. After cleaning up the house I finally finished the trim on the house windows. So now the only trim I have left to paint on the house is the roof trim and of course the garage. Roof trim is going to be hard as I don't think I have a ladder that goes all the way to the top of the peak of my roof. So instead I think I'm going to climb up on the roof and hang over the side and paint that way.. won't be the easiest thing to do but it really is the only way to get it done.

Not much happen today.. kind of a nice lazy day. I watched some TV and played some LOTRO and of course looked for work (with no luck). I am super excited for tomorrow as my best bud Chris is flying in from Montana to hang out the next five days.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Hobbits, Hobbits and more Hobbits

Still recovering from the awesome day that was yesterday (Marian Call concert). Everything was clean expect the kitchen, but I didn't feel like cleaning much. So instead I released my next MASH podcast and then jumped onto Lord of the Rings Online, which I will talk more about in a minute.. first there was a big surprise today when Peter Jackson released another production video. If you don't know who Peter is, he's the director and co-writer of The Lord of the Rings movies and now the Hobbit trilogy. He's been releasing these great behind the scenes production videos with really interesting fact and footage from the making of The Hobbit movies. This was the first one for the new The Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug. (aka Hobbit 2)

Of course this video is another home run.. like the 10 before this one it's full of fun and interesting information and it gives you just a hint of what we will be seeing this coming fall to get you really pumped for the movie. I really appreciate Mr. Jackson taking the time to do these and I hope to see many more in the future.

Now back to LOTRO, they were doing a Treasure Hunt event for the past four days. It was taking place out in Dwarf land (Ered Luin). You had to do two tasks and earn pic axes and then go and dig in holes and find various treasures. Only issue was you had a 15 minute cool down time between tasks. So I'd do the two tasks then go and clean up or do something around the house for 15 minutes and then come back and do it again. Each time you completed a task you got 2 pic axes and a good chunk of XP. I did this back and forth for about 10 hours on the first day, 2 hours on the second day, 0 hours on the third day, 1 hour on the fourth and what I thought was the final day. But they extended the treasure hunt one more day so today I spent a good 13 hours playing every 15 minutes.. There were three mounts you could possibly find, they were hidden in what they called the HUGE Cache. I did manage to get all three of the mounts, the first was the more common one, the treasure laden pony, then I got the pony with the cave claw mask and finally today only a few hours before it ended I got my treasure laden goat.. named Dunken. He's pretty awesome. I mean I love my seven other ponies but riding a goat is pretty cool. During the 26 hours of play over five days I got a ton of awesome goodies, huge amount of XP (I actually leveled up from 43 to 47 and a few really cool big prizes as I manage to find 12 of the HUGE Caches. It was a blast. Here's a pic of my Hobbit Drialdo on my goat Dunken

MASH 4077 Podcast Ep 57

Download from itunes , listen on Stitcher Radio or Listen, get direct download from our main website

Show Notes

Kenny Mittleider from Knights of the Guild, Alien Nation: The Newcomers Podcast & Confessions of a Fanboy Podcast, Simon Meddings from Waffle On Podcast, & Al Kessel from Tales from the Mouse House, Fast Forward & Just Because Podcast discuss one of the most successful and longest running television series in history.. M*A*S*H

Today we cover Season 3, Episode #9 - Alcoholics Unanimous

57th Episode Overall

Directed by Hy Averback
Written by Everett Greenbaum & Jim Fritzell
Production code B314
Original air date November 12, 1974

Set during the Korean War in the 1950’s

Plot Summary: Henry's departure to Tokyo leaves Major Burns in charge of the 4077th. He declares total prohibition of alcohol, which leads to a near riot amongst the camp, especially from Hawkeye and Trapper.

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Marian Call House Concert

Today is the day I've been waiting for the past few months. Marian Call is performing at my house. It all started with a text that I received from my buddy Luis asking if I was interested in hosting a Marian Call house concert. I didn't hesitate to say yes. I've seen her in concert several times and love her music. The next task was getting folks to come out to my place for it. My goal was to get 30 to 35 people for the concert. That way Marian would have a decent chance of getting some donations and making this concert worth the trip. Slowly but surely the guest list grew and soon we hit the 35 guests mark. I was excited. Then the week of the concert we started to lose people for various reasons and I understand things come up and so on but we still had about 30 people coming. Well that was until the day before and the day of the event. Suddenly it was like a mass exodus and 11 people dropped out at the last minute. That left 19 guests for this Marian Call house party, a far cry from the 35 that I thought I had only a few weeks ago. Again I'm not upset and I understand things come up I'm just disappointed in myself at not being able to gather a large enough group of friends to hit my goal.

Anyways.. my buddy Brett came over last night to help me get things set up in the morning. I only had a few things to do. Wanted to water the trees, pull some weeds, clean up the kitchen area and master bathroom. I also needed to go shopping and pick up some water, chips and soda. We were done around 1pm and folks started to show up. Soon the majority of the people were here and then Marian and her guitarist Bryan arrived. We agreed upon a spot for them to set up and then everyone helped bring in their equipment. Soon we were ready to go. A few more people arrived and we took our seats and the concert began. She sang for the next hour or so before taking a break to sell some CD's and sign some autographs. We chatted and snacked for about 30 minutes and then they did another 30 to 45 minute set. She did new stuff and classic songs. It was fantastic.

One of many things I love about Marian is audience participation, like "Shark Week". I love that she's so interactive with her audience.

Once the show was over she and Bryan hung out with us for the rest of the night. We talked, played some Card Against Humanity and Space Team. As it was hitting 9pm I realized there were still a about 12 people here so I suggested making spaghetti for dinner, it's something that I have a lot of and it feeds alot. As I made the pasta and sauce, Marian grilled some veggies to mix into the sauce and my friend Rebecca helped with the bread. We had dinner ready in no time. After dinner we talked for a bit more and then the party started to come to an end.

Though we didn't get as many people as I was expecting or hoping for it was still a very fun an intimate concert. Thanks Marian for choosing my house, thanks to Luis for connecting Marian and I and thanks to all those who came the enjoy the music, Robert, Jes, Aaron, Dallas, Luis, Doug, Rupert, Becca, Will, Tamar, Anne, Andrew, Angelique, Troy, Nicki, Rebecca, Steve and a special thanks to Brett who helped me set up, go shopping and clean up afterwards.. Thanks to you all for making this a great day.

You can check out more pictures from the concert HERE.