Sunday, August 29, 2010

Choose Your Own Adventure

Part 3 - Find what cut you –

With your bloody finger in your mouth you use your other hand to rifle through your pants-pocket and pull out your mini LED flashlight. Squeezing it between your fingers it’s mini-bulb is near blinding in the gloom of the store. You can clearly see the path your fingers took along the table top and the spot of blood on the shiny silver blade laid out on the table before you. It is the only item there.

It appears to be a long dagger, about the length of your forearm. The blade is polished steel with the etching of a human skull near the hilt. The hilt itself is made of dark wood, roughly carved into the bust of a wolf with it’s muzzle and teeth greatly exaggerated.

“Huh,” You think out loud to yourself, “It looks like a werewolf.” Reaching out you touch the nose of the malformed animal before you.

“It is.” The sound of a voice over your shoulder startles you, causing you to drop your light and plunge the store back into darkness. You turn, placing you face to face with an old woman. At least you thought she was old. As your eyes readjusted to the dark you could see that though her hair was silver her face held very little wrinkles and her eyes were youthful and clear. The table screeched as you press yourself against it trying to make space between yourself and the woman.

“He has chosen you.” She says, nodding towards the item on the table. “Argharna belongs to you now.”

“What?” you ask sounding more than a little confused.

She gives you a look of impatience like you should know what she is talking about. She waits a moment as if waiting for you to say something else and when you just shrug at her she tisks at you.

“Come along.” She says as picks up the dagger from the table. Turning on her heals she moves quickly away from you back towards the counter, disappearing into a curtained doorway, leaving you behind.


* Follow her
* Stay put
* Turn and leave

Vote in the comments or to the right --->

Friday, August 27, 2010

The warrior kings lived by the sword

It's back... CD Fridays. August has been a crazy month, but since no one really reads my blog it's okay if I fail to post like I say I will. And now for something completely different (or not)...
    Steve McDonald

1. Sons of Somerled

2. Live On My Warrior Son

3. All You Can Know

4. Loch Lomond

5. Soldier's Lament

6. Come to the Isle of Skye

7. Scotland the Brave

8. Celtic Warrior

9. I Will Return

10. Wild Mountain Thyme

11. Per Mare, Per Terras

12. Lordship of the Isles

13. Journey of the Warrior Soul

14. Lordship of the Isles

15. Journey of the Warrior Soul



This CD was purchased at a store called Glyphix that no longer exists at the Layton Hills Mall. I think impart it was run out of town because it offered weekly Tarot Readings and other things of the like. I personally loved that store. It had that Sandalwood and incense smell that I just fell in love with. (That everyone around me seems to hate.) I have a lot of memories that smells in that store triggered, and even now, just thinking of that store I can remember the smell so clearly and a flood of other sent-memories follow along behind. Oh well, this blog isn't about smells that make me remember things, this post is about Sons of Somerled.


(The Original copy of this CD actually belongs to my sister Jessica, this one and another called Stone of Destiny, that is equally as nice... I just chose this one as my selection today because I heard it on my iPod while deciding what to do for today's post.)


Through his music Steve McDonald tells stories of Scotland, of it's history and it's traditions. This CD is about the "Sons of Somerled" which is a history of the McDonald Clan. All of his music reflects on some historic event. There have been several times while listening to the music of Steve McDonald that I have had to stop whatever I was doing and Google something I heard in one of his songs.

This CD is full of emotion that seems to fuel the soul into Scottish pride. This is the music to bring out the best of who we are and where we have come from. There are beautiful sweeping arrangements that use bagpipes and drums that pull at your heart strings. The arrangement of Loch Lomond on this CD is one of my favorites ever. However the Scotland the Brave arrangement here I could take or leave, I'd rather just go to my Black Watch CD for that song. Some of the arrangements could fit into that New Age category with the keyboards and guitar, but it's not distracting in anyway and gives the music a modern yet historic feel to it.

I know I'm not true Scottish decent, there is some Scottish in my, I love the sound of this music and my heart beats to the drums of the homeland. I long to go to the Highlands and to feel the winds of history. I would love to pack up and move to the Isle of Skye and live out my life in a simpler world and just be... (but I know in my rational heart that no matter where I move or run to I'll always have to have a job and face modern life because that's just the way of the world... besides, I'm too lazy to be a farmer.)

I have ALWAYS wanted to go "home" whether that be to the rolling hills of Ireland, The Highlands of Scotland, or the Moors of England... I just want to go there and be there... To live there and experience life there. (Some day ... maybe.)


Personal favorites on this Disc ...

Live On My Warrior Son

All You Can Know

Loch Lomond

I Will Return

Lordship of the Isles


I do love this album with a passion that is a little silly at times, but if you love Scottish/Celtic music this is a must have for your collection. I whole heartedly recommend it to those who are willing to listen. (I also hear that this CD is enhanced for your PC with extra features. I may have to finally buy my own copy just so I can have that too.) You can buy it HERE for $20. It is also available in MP3 for less $$ HERE.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Horray for Stephen! (and his writers)

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Stephen Wins an Emmy
Colbert Report Full Episodes2010 ElectionFox News

Inhale Pink... hoooooold it... Exhale Blue

Is it STILL August!?
This month seems like it has lasted FOREVER... We have had so much going on that I feel like we should be well on our way towards October by this time... but we're not, there is still another seven days until it's over.
We have had Pears family around for most of the month, which has been fun, but busy. Kenji and Hannah came down from Washington last week and stayed with us. They showed up at my house at 2:30 AM on Monday morning. Unfortunately last week seemed like the busiest ever and we didn't get to spend a whole lot of time with them.
August 16th John and I went and saw The Pirates of Penzance at Hale Center Theater in Salt Lake. We both enjoyed it greatly, we have yet to be thoroughly disappointed by anything we have seen there. (I've been in quite the pirate-y mood the last few weeks, I am very ready for talk like a pirate day to come around again)
August 17th we had a family shin-dig at my brother Norm's house so everyone could say hi and meet Hannah. This was her first time visiting all of us down here.
August 18th the two of them went to Kenji's dad's house and spent the night and didn't come back to my place until late Thursday evening and they went home on Friday.
So I'm sad that I didn't get to spend more time with them. I wish I had been able to take some time off and maybe taken them someplace neat that neither had been to before. But I couldn't and I didn't. But Hannah says they'll be back in November... I hope so. and they are more than welcome to stay with me again. :)
We haven't watched too many movies this last week or so. I did sleep through Clash of the Titans once and John went and saw the Expendables without me (He says he loved it) and last night we watched The Time Traveler's Wife (I enjoyed it).
That's about it for our August. Keith and Rachel should be having a baby any day now. His name is going to be Ryan. I can't wait to hold him.
Happy Birthday to my August Family - Kim, Keith, Jessica, Geoffrey, Bryon, and Loran - I love you all and hope you had fantastic birthday's.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Choose Your Own Adventure:

Part 2 – Go In –

After a few moments hesitation you opt to go in to the store and check it out. The door sticks a little so you push your shoulder against the rough and weathered wood, and it scrapes open under your added weight. A bell rang out at your entry, as the door pushed it aside, the chimes tinkling creating a familiar sound, that rings again as you push the door closed behind you.
The store is exceedingly dark after coming in from the day light outside. It’s warm and musty in here and smells overwhelmingly like dirt and old books. As your eyes adjust to the dim light you realize that instead of electric lights the interior is lit by large flickering candles, their wax dripping from the sconce on to the floor below, the hot liquid creating patterns as the puddles coagulated beneath my feet.
You’re eyes travel around the room and you catch glimpses of items that are placed nearest to flickering candlelight. The book shelves that you can see are disheveled and papers poked out willy-nilly between books that were as wide as you and seemed to be decaying before your eyes. You shake your head at the state of the store and again wonder where on earth it came from. Stepping further into the store, the light that had come in through the windows faded and you are left in the candlelit darkness. It was as if the sun didn’t penetrate the large plate glass window.
Even with the light of the candles you have to squint through the darkness to maneuver yourself around the tables placed haphazardly between you and the figure at the back of the store.
The light seems to decrease as you move further in, it is dark enough that you can barely see where you are going, but you decide to press forward and see why you were beckoned inside. Trailing your hand along the table tops to help you keep the balance, you can feel the dust collect as you push it along with your fingertips. Your fingers track over small objects, their textures varying beneath your fingers, some rough, smooth, sharp, while others feel cold to the touch. You feel a prick on your finger and you quickly draw it to your mouth placing the offended appendage to your tongue to soothe the hurt, the irony taste of blood coating your mouth and whispering to you that this may have been a bad idea.


* Turn around and leave
* Continue Forward
* Find what cut you
* Cuss loudly

Vote in the comments or to the right --->

Thursday, August 19, 2010

oh no!

I just realized that my Crystal is Flashing!
Run John! Run!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Choose Your Own Adventure:

The passing strangers on the crowded street bustle by you as you stand staring at the shop window. Printed in block letters across the glass is the name: THURSDAY’S & OTHER SUNDRY THINGS.
“How strange.” You think to yourself, “This wasn’t here yesterday.” In fact, You KNOW it wasn’t here yesterday. Not the shop, not the window, and definitely NOT the building. You look around you at the passers-by and no one else seems to notice this oddity on the street.
Cupping your hands around your eyes you peer into the windows, the inside of the store is dark but it is littered with skulls and pansies, the walls are lined with books and jars and behind the counter at the back of the room sits a shadow. You can’t make out from this view if it is a man or a woman. The shadow must have spotted you because a part detached from the whole, an arm, you assume, and motions you to come in.


* Go in
* Say out
* Break the window


This is a new feature I have been playing with lately, as I have been missing playing Dungeons & Dragons (oddly enough) I have been pondering the world of choose your own adventures. I used to love reading these. I’d steal the books from my brother Keith because he had this awesome box set he kept by his bed. (I loved the one about the unicorn.)

Anyway – I wanted to write one and either:

A) let other people pick up where I left off
B) hold a poll and see what the majority wants to do and I’ll write the entire thing.

So first off I’m holding a poll to see which option you think sounds more entertaining and to see which option to choose.

Please Vote in the “Comments” below. (or on the right --->)
Starting next week I’ll have tallied the votes and we’ll see how this story continues.

Friday, August 13, 2010

A Few Things on a Friday

Life's been busy and I haven't blogged in a while. Lets see what I can do to catch up...
First of all = Just so you know... We are not "invite ourselves over" people. We have lots of friends and family that tell us all the time to just come over any time, blah blah blah... But we just aren't those kind of people. We do require an invitation. It doesn't have to be far in advance, it might just be a phone call that says come over right now... (granted, with how we have been the last year or so you might get a "not today" answer from us, but that doesn't mean we love you any less or that we can't reschedule for another time)
That being said... We do love when people drop in on us. We love seeing our friends and family within the walls of our own home. (we have been trying to be more social this year. really. we're trying to make an effort to see the people we love)
Today is Scott and Ariane's Wedding. In fact, they're probably getting married as I write this. I am ecstatic to have Ariane joining "the family" I have loved her since the day I met her (almost 10 years ago in Falls Church, VA.) She is awesome, and she deserves Scott and Lucy and all the happiness in the world. They will make such a cute little family and Lucy and Scott will be well taken care of.
That being said... this week has been a tough one for "the family" I'm sure all of our thought's have turned to Lariann at some point or another. Lari's best friend Lindsay got married last Saturday and, again, while I'm happy for Lindsay I have been sad for myself. I try to remind myself that Lari is better-than-okay now, and that we are all part of an eternal family and we will all see each other again... Yet, I'm feeling her absence more this week with the addition of all these happy moments. I even find myself having to skip songs on my iPod today when Travis comes up or The Black Watch... so much of my music reminds me of her.
Talk Like A Pirate Day is quickly approaching. (henceforth TLAPD) While this holiday is one of my favorites next to Halloween and My Birthday it does have a lot of bitter sweet memories. I found out on TLAPD 2007 that Robert Jordan had died a few days prior. (wow, was it really that long ago?) Lariann had her first seizure and found out she had a brain tumor on TLAPD 2006. And since I have only known about TLAPD for the last five years, that's not very good odds for having a happy holiday. But I'm excited none-the less.
** Remember to spread the word, and that word be "Arrr!" **
We've had family around for the last few weeks. Norm and Becca had Sophie blessed at church on August 1st and we were ALL (even the Awesome family) able to attend.
Andrea and her four youngest came down from Washington and Ray and his Nicole came out from Tennessee. Nicole is going to BYU this fall, and Ray is staying until the end of August. (There is a rumor that Kenji and his girl friend Hannah are coming to visit next week so I'm excited to see them too.)
Over the last two weeks I was able to spend ample amounts of time with my sister and her kids at my house. (which was nice because on their usual visits the family rarely gets to see them as they are off jaunting with their old friends, and not with us.) So it was good. between her and the kids my yard work got taken care of and some of those pesky "need to do" items that have been sitting around since spring of 2009.
We had most of the family over a few times in the last two weeks for food and socializing and even a night around the fire pit. We went to the Zoo together last Friday, which was fun, and had a family picnic at the park on Wednesday night before Andrea left. 
We are hoping to see The Expendables this weekend, and we have a date with The Pirates of Penzance on Monday so it should be a nice weekend for us.
Umm. that's about all for now. As a parting gesture here are the highlights of our movie watching for the last two weeks:
Astro Boy (Loved It! I give it four cannon balls for the long nine as my review.)
Batman: Under the Red Hood (Very interesting. Hadn't heard that story before. I give it three cannon balls for the long nine as my review.)
(FYI - these movies are out of a five cannon ball rating for the long nines. Arrr!)
... and that's it.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Craigslist post for housing...

This almost makes me want to move to Washington, DC again.

Date: 2010-08-04, 11:06AM EDT
Reply to: [Errors when replying to ads?]


Thy quest for housing and fellowship is over, fellow rogue/mage/ranger/swords(wo)man; here in this ad lies tale of a place where you can lay your head at night without shame or trepidation regarding who you truly are! A truly noble heart is required to enter this domicile - to test its purity you must meet and disarm a small furry goblin that guards the threshold to our keep (his name is Turtle (yes he has had all of his shots)) but be warned, his temper is capricious and you may do him no physical harm while attempting to subdue him. If you pass this first test you will find yourself surrounded by noble (bike) steeds; if you come on foot have no fear
for we will not mock you but be aware, all who reside here currently go forth each day and night atop steel and carbon fiber mounts and if you cannot abide by such modern means of transport you would do well to seek out another homestead. Once past the indoor stable (bike rack) you will encounter the kitchen and scullery, a place capable of great sorcery and alchemy if thy nature is inclined to such means of expression. If it pleases you, or if it is in your nature, a contest of skills could be in order because in this place of mirth and home the cooking of great things is of paramount importance to all who reside here - once a week cook nights taken up by each companion (featuring something vegan, gluten-free, soy-free foodstuffs) ensures that we are all satiated and powered up to do battle with the repressive world that threatens to engulf our spirits (and repress our
leveling up). After this saucy saunter we will lead you through the manner to a lair that is only meant to hold the truest of hearts - the utility portion of the basement that lies beneath the stairs. A modest space for even the most spartan of adventurers, it comes outfitted with a bed and desk that will serve any and all of ones needs. With a door designed to allow for easy entering and exiting one never need fear disturbing the slumber of other adventurers - all of your late night doings are yours to keep. Fear not for your safety though! The door which you may keep is magical for it opens up to the most charming of (enclosed) outdoor spaces! Large enough for any sort of LARPing it is the perfect space for sword or archery practice and the open garage space is All Yours as well (perfect for tinkering/recording/hobbitting away). Your fellow companions in this dwelling of roguery include: a queer Healer well-versed in Spanish lore with a penchant for gold and an aversion to wheat; a Ranger who spends his days hanging from cliff shelves and working with youths on all things ethical; a Thief who designs wonderous things for NPOs on a magical box that transmits knowledge to others via a 'web'; a Warrior who fights for Labour and likes to run in search of adventure.

If this sounds like a heavenly abode please email us with your information and we will let you see whether or not you would be a good fit for our noble fiefdom in the Kingdom of DC!

(Especially desired: anyone with knowledge/interest of 9+ sided die games; Ursula LeGuin or Octavia Butler/easy-going nature/quick-wit and nimbleness; Magic cards, not so much)

  • cats are OK - purrr
  • dogs are OK - wooof
  • Location: LeDroit Park/Bloomingdale
  • it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

PostingID: 1880156161

Thursday, August 5, 2010

The Official Talk Like a Pirate Personality Inventory

I took this Quiz:  The Official Talk Like a Pirate Personality Inventory

The Quartermaster

Profile: The Quartermaster (The ship’s disciplinarian).You, me hearty, are a man or woman of action! And what action it is! Gruesome, awful, delightful action. You mete out punishment to friend and foe alike – well, mostly to foe, because your burning inner rage isn’t likely to draw you a whole lot of the former. Still, though you may be what today is called “high maintenance” and in the past was called “bat-shit crazy,” the crew likes to have you around because in a pinch your maniacal combat prowess may be the only thing that saves them from Jack Ketch. When not in a pinch, the rest of the crew will goad you into berserker mode because it’s just kind of fun to watch. So you provide a double service – doling out discipline AND entertainment.

Andrew vs. The Tree

... and the Boy won.

Several years ago... probably only two... there was a giant windstorm and this tree blew down onto my house, it rested on the house and the power lines for a few days before the Power Co. finally told me that they wouldn't help me, and so we endeavored to cut it down ourselves. We took off the top and as much of the bottom that we could, but it turned out that it was stuck in the fence and though me and john and devin all tried it was to no avail and the stump has remained there ever since... until today.
The boy in the picture is my adorable nephew Andrew Michael, he's 16. Andrew and his mother are visiting from Washington this week and Andrea decided she needed to do some hands-on with the house... probably so she can write off her trip on her taxes... but I ain't complaining. Between the two of them they have managed to relieve the poor fence of it's burden it has been hanging on too for so long. Yay!
Thanks Landlord and Sons for being so overly helpful. It just makes me love you just that much more. :) 
Now... on to the next project...