This What Not Being Sick Reads Like

“You’ve been gone the length of a bible.”

-paraphrased by me from Shakespeare in Love (an excellent film)

I have not, knock on wood, been sick. EVERYONE immediately around me has. Some of them more than one time. Given that there are five people around me and there have been 8 illnesses, you do the math and then you will understand why I have not been anywhere at all.

However, everyone is currently, again knock on wood, healthy.

Which brings me and you up to date.

Thanks for reading. 🙂

What? Still here…fine here is a bunch of stuff you have missed because you don’t live here.


Last night Palladium Books finally fessed up that they fucked up or in their vernacular once again laid the blame on everyone else. The gist, they have no money as in evidence by the statement that they cannot afford to pay shipment on the offer they made to backers. I could curse and rant and rave about this, but in all honesty I am glad that it is finally over. I am even happier that the Robotech license was taken away from them and I hope that the various lawsuits being bantered about see some measure of success against Palladium Books.

Blogging Apathy

While dealing with the sick I did not blog. You may have noticed that. I tried to blog once, but nothing happened. I’m not feeling it. Reading that many WordPress sites have a keylogging virus and the “fix” did not engender me to return. In fact, if it was not for my love of closure I probably wouldn’t have bothered with this. Of course I am a wishy washy person, so who knows.

Role-Playing Haps, Miss and Otherwise

Right before the wave of disease settled upon us we were role-playing. In my infinite wisdom I tried to offer an alternative game for us to play. I like Pathfinder as something to read. As something to play, way too many rules. I have no clue why rpgs feel the need to make a rule for everything and then make complicated rules for the stuff you are supposed to do a lot, but they do and I don’t want to be bothered. Which is why I tried to switch to Fate Core. Unfortunately, freedom of creation turned out to be a bigger burden than 79 steps to finish a round of anything (that is an exaggeration, but at times felt that way). I don’t know what is going to happen now that the disease has passed.

My Big Puddles and Whiskers Notebook

While I have not written here, I have written in a notebook that goes most places with me. I decided not to share any of my stories for a while because I have been bumrushing them to you. What this means is, I get an idea, I write it, I share it…without much thought to what is next. Now I am taking the time to craft the universe, the characters, and the action. For me this is more satisfying and will be how it remains until…well whenever. Gist of this is that Puddles and Whiskers are alive and well.

Social Media Pull Out

I started the process of reducing my social media depression machine. For those not in the know, use of social media can lead to depression. Lots of reasons why. No, I am not depressed, but I noticed a correlation between social media and my general happiness. So I cut myself off and my happiness has gone up. Facebook gone, LinkedIn gone, several smaller blogs gone or soon to be gone, and so on.  You don’t need to know my every move and I don’t need to know yours. Trust me, I will be happier.

No Games…

This is a bummer, but again due to illness we have only started to game again. I swear illness sucks.

Final Words

I don’t know if this will be my final blog or not. I don’t feel any urge to share with the world anymore. I told my story of college and then some. That being said, this blog will remain here in case I do decide to return, which knowing me could be tomorrow or another month.


-I hated Shane, the landowner should’ve won


I’m Good At Daggering (PF 2)

“… a mind needs books as a sword needs a whetstone, if it is to keep its edge.”

-George R.R. Martin

We six gathered around the table, dice piled nearby, pencils clicked (no old fashioned pencils that need sharpening for us), a pile of rulebooks, and character sheets at the ready for our first role playing session.

Adults at the ends of the tables, children between. This is a standard formation allowing the children to screw off together and adults to provide quick assistance where necessary. My hope is that one of the children will provide an example to the others, so far this has happened. I want our kids to be good gamers, hell great gamers.

A quick background between the five players describing how they know each other. I follow up with why they are in the town of Sandpoint, the Swallowtail Festival. First sentences start the process of establishing who their characters are. The ranger looks for a contest to excel in, the rogue who likes to run finds a race, the fighter waits for trouble to start, the mage observes the world around him, the cleric provides a comforting presence for the growing crowd awaiting the beginning of the festival.

Within seconds the action begins, goblins attack the festival. The characters jump into action…well kind of. First level characters do not have a lot of options, players who rush or are rushed through character creation even less so. Players who make interesting character decisions…things got odd fast.

The wizard, who is a necromancer, carries around a scythe, you know to look the role of a farmer in fancy robes or a necromancer. Unfortunately, wizards are not known for their skill with scythes and this wizard proved the rule. With spells much better, but that is a bit on.

The fighter put his heavy crossbow to use, then sword skill to better use. The cleric did her best with an uncooperative scimitar, while the ranger had a run of bad luck when her bow string snapped and her backup weapon was only a dagger. The rogue demonstrated why you never turn your back on her during a fight, stay out of bow range, never get tackled, and most of all hold onto your only dagger.

Over the course of two hours the players fought off waves of goblins and saving Sandpoint. Lessons were learned; such as have more than one melee weapon. What does a wizard do when out of spells? In this case rummage through his robes for a torch to throw, a torch to use as a club, and a pewter mug to brain a goblin with…if he had hit.

The cleric learned, more armor is better, as is not standingslashchasing down the bad guy. The cleric dropped almost dead, thankfully, the ranger doubled as a healer. Always valuable. The rogue learned that shooting a bow with 20 arrows is one thing, throwing her dagger at a goblin is another, especially when she missed and had to go get it to fight that same goblin.

In the end the players triumph. Goblin attacked defeated. Players celebrated as heroes of Sandpoint. Not bad for the first session.

“When you’re in jail, a good friend will be trying to bail you out. A best friend will be in the cell next to you saying, ‘Damn, that was fun’.”

-Groucho Marx


I’ll Be In The Bathroom Pondering My Character’s Name (PF 1)

“Time is a game played beautifully by children.”

-Heraclitus, Fragments

Welcome, welcome to the first of the Adventures in Pathfinder RPG. A series of posts about our adventures playing the Pathfinder RPG in an attempt to add to our list of games we play, give us something to do on the weekend, play with the family, and have some fun.

The initial plan was for me to generate characters for Dungeons and Dragons, but that did not pan out because I got tired of reading the rules. Then I hit upon Pathfinder because we love the card game and thanks to a friend have a ton of materials. However, as I made characters I found I was making multiple characters for me and not for the players. So I threw them away.

Which made the new plan, everyone makes their own character. Not all together as that is time consuming. Instead each person, five in all, would see me in small groups, thus be ready to play tonight. That did not happen. Sadly our children would rather watch YouTubes than work on characters. Seems they thought it would be boring.

It was. Sorry, if you find character creation fun then you are not the person assisting five people do it at the same time. With some preparation I printed out some of the character creation chapters, but not all of them as our printer ran out paper and took a shit roughly in that order. With five character sheets, five new players, and one rulebook we set out to create fun.

Problem with a great many roleplaying games is that character creation is based on the assumption that someone, meaning the player, has read some of the rules, some familiarity with the setting, and some familiarity with non-video game roleplaying. Very little consideration is given towards people who have no fucking clue.

That problem makes character creation a chore. That problem is something that ALL game designers should consider; what if the reader/player has never read/heard of anything we are doing and has somehow picked up this book and wants to play? I have a solution, but I want a job first. 🙂

Working together in small batches we worked through the character creation process. First, roll dice for attributes. Second, explain how to assign attributes, what the attributes mean, and…fuck…they need to have an idea what race (wrong term by the way, species is the correct term) and class they want to play. Third, show them images of the races, explain a bit about the races….Fourth, same with classes….

An hour or so later, five characters in various stages, all of them have a species and class. With patience we slowly get each character sheet filled out up to equipment. Then shopping begins. Watching five people peer over the same pages was boring. Necessary, but boring. A few more minutes of final details and…damn too late to play tonight, at least I can get some stuff out the way.

That was when the magic occurred. For a half-an-hour I entertained them with a mock game. Each of them got to take an action and see how the whole scene played out. Dull eyes became bright, slouches turned into upright positions, and most of all everyone is looking forward to our first game tomorrow.

Cross your fingers. I know I am.

Crap, I forgot. After all is said and done the party consists of

Elsbeth, Half-Elf Cleric of Sarenrea

Qdread, Elven Fighter

Unknown Name*, Human Wizard

Fiji, Gnome Rogue

Valara, Elven Ranger

* Names are the hardest part of all.

“Life is more fun if you play games.”

-Roald Dahl

Alex’s Strawberry Scented Tank

“Tell him that we fucking reprogrammed reality. Tell him that language is a virus and that religion is an operating system and that prayers are just so much fucking spam.”

-Neil Gaiman, American Gods

Dear WordPress people,


I would love to tell all of you that since my first post of the year I have gotten 15 new followers taking me well over the 500 mark. I cannot because all of them along with at least 150 others are from fake accounts. I know this. You know this. Why WordPress cannot do something about it, I have no clue.

Personally I enjoy (sarcasm) seeing blahblah@outlookdotfuckoff is now following you multiple times in a row within minutes of each other and once the initial flood dies down one or two more variations on blahblah@outlookorwhateverfuckingservicedotfuckoff (trade AND copy right ME) each day after. What I enjoy even more is the following wave of spam. Not the salty gelatenous treat and favorite food of Hawaii but the bland, boring, generic, horribly spelled and grammared “comments” that have no relevance to whatever post. This week all of them from Alex at blahblah@whateverfuckingservicedotfuckoff.

Thank you Alex, for commenting that you love my intimate knowledge of…well you never finished the sentence, but since the bot you are commented on Puddles and Whiskers I can only imagine my intimate knowledge of fictional cats with weaponry who solve…well nothing yet, but they are working on the case.

Thank you Alex, for commenting on how fast my blog loads. What the fuck! Seriously send me spam about having a bigger penis, something no one wants to see, as I am a big enough of a dick for three people. Or some hair treatment, shoes, purses, or whatever else the fucking bot you are thinks works as a non-functioning sentence.


I never liked you or your spam.

Now for those of you who might be thinking, “he should do something.” I have, when this first happened years ago when I was writing about SEX before the big SEX purge (another boner of mine to pick with WordPress) I contacted the powers that be of WordPress about fake accounts following me…their response, shoulder shrug and enjoy the stats. If I was concerned about stats I would post better shit. I am not, thus that did not fly with me.

And neither does strawberry scented wax on a Warhammer 40k tank in desperate need of a repaint BEFORE the wax. Ugh! Another thing I do, when not railing against Alex, is build and paint Warhammer miniatures. As a hobby it relaxes me and give my brain room to think about other things, such as fucking Alex-not fucking Alex, but Alex you fucker-as a skill building and painting has taught me almost as much as roleplaying.

An awesome thing is building and painting is a family activity. Generally when one person is at the construction table someone else joins. We share building tips and offer advice for painting. Much better than everyone doing their own thing. A while ago our girl wanted a second tank, only this time she wanted to paint it. Being an overly indulgent parent I let her. For a 7-year old, not bad. For me…let me say, I smiled a lot and silently made plans to repaint her tank when she lost interest.

She lost interest. The tank moved to my repaint shelf. Today the tank is one step closer to the garbage can. At some point between painted tank and repaint shelf strawberry scented wax dripped all over the tank. At first I thought it was too much clear coat. It quickly became obvious it was not.

The big issue is not the wax. I can get the wax off. The scented oils are the issue. Oils and the paints we use do not mix. The oil has permeated the paint and I do not have a way to get paint off of the model without damaging the model. So for now, we have a strawberry scented tank.

Alex, fuck off.

“What are Americans still buying? Big Macs,Campbell’s soup,Hershey’s chocolate and Spam–the four food groups of the apocalypse.”

-Frank Rich



New Year, New Computer…More Of The Same Only Faster and Smaller

Those aren’t books. You can’t hold a computer in your hand like you can a book. A computer does not smell. There are two perfumes to a book. If a book is new, it smells great. If a book is old, it smells even better. It smells like ancient Egypt. A book has got to smell. You have to hold it in your hands and pray to it. You put it in your pocket and you walk with it. And it stays with you forever. But the computer doesn’t do that for you. I’m sorry.”

-Ray Bradbury

Let’s see how this goes…

first test, is this keeping up with how fast I can type?  Check

second test, is this updating and moving around as fast as I like to go? Check

third test, actually typing a post about anything on this new machine? In progress…

New Year, new computer. The older computer, I refuse to say old computer as it is only 6 years old and I have children older than that is beginning to show its age. Sad, but true. The older computer worked fine for all of my needs up to a year ago when I started having problems typing.

Typing is what I do. If I cannot type, I cannot a lot of things. Alas, I type fast. Faster than the older computer could keep up with. Ever type out an entire 100 word paragraph, look up at the screen or down if that is your preferred direction of looking and see nothing other than letters slowly appearing?

I have. Scared the shit out of me the first time. Became the normal after a while and eventually, culminating in recently, became frustrating as it slowed my normal pace of writing posts and other minutiae down to a crawl where instead of writing as the words came to me I had time to watch the words appear and get…bored.

Now, as of write now, I am typing as the words appear in my head and the computer is keeping up, other than a fumble finger or three of mine as I learn finger placement on yet another, smaller keyboard. Am I imagining things or are keyboards becoming smaller and smaller? Are humans turning into hobbits or only people who use keyboards?

I just checked, my fingers are as big as ever (good news for the wife and people who need jars unstuck), but there is fur on my toes. Is that the first sign of impending hobbitism? I won’t mind, I have always wanted a house under a hill with round doors and square windows. I assume that if I become a hobbit in addition to being able to use tiny keyboards I will get the house under the hill, otherwise why be a hobbit. Long trips sound nice, but if a wandering magic hobo gives me a ring to take to the local volcano I am going to have to insist on first class all the way.

And here we are at the end of yet another journey. Thank you for the welcome backs. Thank you for reading while I was away. Thank you for reading while I am here. I’d give you some insight into plans, but I have a computer to get up to my settings, a painting/assembly gaming area to finish, and a few other things to finish up first.

“It’s the job that’s never started as takes longest to finish.”

-J.R.R. Tolkien

Wait, What…I’ve Been Gone For How Long? What Year Is It?

“Generally speaking, though, Americans have an inability to relax into sheer pleasure. Ours is an entertainment-seeking nation, but not necessarily a pleasure-seeking one. Americans spend billions to keep themselves amused with everything from porn to theme parks to wars, but that’s not exactly the same thing as quiet enjoyment. Americans work harder and longer and more stressful hours than anyone in the world today. But…we seem to like it. Alarming statistics back this observation up, showing that many Americans feel more happy and fulfilled in their offices than they do in their own homes. Of course, we all inevitably work too hard, then we get burned out and have to spend the whole weekend in our pajamas, eating cereal straight out of the box and staring at the TV in a mild coma (which is the opposite of working, yes, but not exactly the same thing as pleasure). Americans don’t really know how to do NOTHING. This is the cause of that great sad American stereotype-the overstressed executive who goes on vacation but who cannot relax.”

– Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love

The proverbial bad penny.

That clingy ex.


That’s write, I’m back from whatever hiatus I was on. I told myself many years ago that I would never be “that blogger.” You know the blogger I’m talking about the one who starts strong, then disappears (although in my defense and I do not need defending, I did say that I would write when I had something to write about [not that I have much to write about] and then I said I would be off for a bit [now I’m back]), then comes back in fits and starts. I did, I remember the day I said that to myself.

Unfortunately, in the words of me, “Now that I am out of school, not much of interest happens anymore.” And in the words of a wise man, “That’s good to hear.”

“that’s QaQ buSbogh. ”

-somethings are NOT better in Klingon 😦

Shortly after the last post, I took a lot of time off from writing of any kind. For those asking why did the writer stop writing, the answer is rooted in my history. Sit down for story time. I said SIT DOWN! There that is better, as I was saying in a soothing tone, way back in my youth say 20 or so years ago, my life revolved around two things…

who I was fucking



Not in that order. Ask any woman I was fucking back then and she will tell you among other things that I put gaming in front of them unless they too gamed and if they did not game they had better fuck well, suffice to say I gamed a lot. At one point in time for 3 years, 5 nights a week.

If you have ever run a roleplaying game you know that there is a shit, a metric shit, tonne of writing involved. When you run a regular game or in my case games, the metric shit tonne becomes exponentially larger. I know I have mentioned this before, if not here it goes. As the leader (I do not like Game Master unless as part of “Dungeon Knight in the Bedroom” where Master is appropriate, although I do not play games) I wrote out, as in reams of paper adventures, places, people, and things for the players ranging from a low of four to a high just over 10 to interact with. You may have noticed I like to write, back then if we wanted to play, I had to write.

There are two times when roleplaying does not happen:

1.) Several of the players have problems with their non-gaming significant others or get new non-gaming, but “willing to try” significant others. i.e. the significant other syndrome

2.) late November until early January

At least for me this was a thing. Right before Thanksgiving most people bolted home for dinner and enjoying the rest of the holidays. While gaming happened sporadically, among our extended group the understanding is that for once in our lives we would spend most of our time in the real world. Thus for approximately 2 months every year for…well a long time now, I stopped writing. I didn’t need to write and eventually learned not to write for those 2 months.

{I should mention here that five years of college had an interesting way of blasting the fun writing in life out of my head, further reinforcing that when given a break take it, because work is write around the proverbial corner.}

I took the break to do other things.

And that is where I have been, doing other things. Should I tell you some of them or let you guess what they are? I’ll tell you some.

I had a job editing over the holidays. Yes, I received remuneration and a good time. I did not receive a good time, I had a good time…ugh this language.

I got another idea from the children.

I turned my notebook into a disaster zone of notes. Yes, I did resume writing over the break, only I went back to basics-a pen (pour out a drink for the dead pen and his or her brother [how do you determine the sex of your writing implement and the first person to say it’s pink gets a stiff finger to the sternum] who died in the most noble pursuit of putting my ideas to paper) and a note book.

I relaxed.

I thought about my blogging future. I didn’t come up with anything of substance.

I read crap books.

I watched the country slide another space or two towards irrelevancy, anarchy, and more bad times.

I played a lot of video games.* Learned Destiny 2 will not be anything worth a shit for a long time, Just Cause 3 caused motion sickness, and that searching for a group online game for us to play is more frustrating than trying to convince someone that a threesome would be the “best” thing for the relationship**…I need a video game Unicorn. 🙂

I played some tabletop games, built many miniatures, and painted.

And here we are again. I’m writing again. You are reading me again. What will I write about and how often will I post, I do not know. I have some thoughts revolving around the miniature building/painting and games I am playing. I have some thoughts revolving around Puddles and Whiskers. I have some thoughts…

“Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.”

– Oscar Wilde

* I prefer to play tabletop games, but holidays do not allow that to happen as much as I would have like, thus video games.

** Don’t do that. If you want to have a threesome, have an open and honest conversation with all involved. In fact, if you need advice I have 3000 words on the subject lying about you can read. Just ask. 🙂


I Dream Of A Great Feast, First Though…

“He’d noticed that sex bore some resemblance to cookery: it fascinated people, they sometimes bought books full of complicated recipes and interesting pictures, and sometimes when they were really hungry they created vast banquets in their imagination – but at the end of the day they’d settle quite happily for egg and chips. If it was well done and maybe had a slice of tomato.”

-Terry Pratchett

Thank you for indulging my need to not write here every day. I say thank you because in spite or despite of my lack of continual writing people still visit in the numbers they did when I posted every day. That says a lot to me.

The last ingredients for Thanksgiving were purchased today. We are ready to begin cooking. Normally I would not say we I would say Barb is ready to cook, as Thanksgiving is the one day of the year where she cooks and only she cooks. There are several famous helper “incidents” that I could tell you about; cutting to the end of each, “She yelled at me because I didn’t do X Y or Z.” Unfortunately due to a conflux of events she may need/want help in the kitchen this time.

Event 1, she has a cold or at least sounds like she has a cold…she says she feels fine despite a cough that wakes the dead (read me)…sick people (or not) need a hand, thus she may have a helper

Event 2, her work schedule…being a pharmacist does not leave a lot (read any) free time around the holidays when you are the new person on the block…funny new is a relative term, seems pharmacists stay for long times making seniority something measured in decades…unlike previous years she has one day for prep instead of few days, thus she may have a helper

Event 3, mouse season, this has nothing to do with cooking, but cleaning. Seems in   there is such a thing as mouse season, we have gotten several independent references to the time of year when the weather turns cold and filed mice look for places to hide…they found our place

I declared WAR! Turned our house into deathtrap dungeon and instituted a strict policy of cleanliness. Not that we were dirty people, but with four people messes happen, and with one primary cleaner (me) some messes lasted longer than necessary. Not anymore. Knock on wood my war is being won and with the timely assistance of at least one if not two feral cats we have not seen a mouse for several weeks. Vigilance remains the word though, which means Barb will have at least one dishwasher in the kitchen with her at all times cleaning as she uses cookware. Hardly ideal, I already have a rotation worked out for those too “stressed” by her potential “yelling about X Y or Z.”

We shall see.

What I do know is that Barb’s Thanksgiving meals are looked forward to each year by everyone who has ever had the pleasure of being at our table. We like to have as many people over as possible, although there are times the numbers are not as large as we hope, the dream is to have everyone over once a year for a great feast.

“I celebrated Thanksgiving in an old-fashioned way. I invited everyone in my neighborhood to my house, we had an enormous feast, and then I killed them and took their land.”

-Jon Stewart