'a White Room' by Richard Schatzberger on Flickr

Hello, again.

My, this place is dusty. I’ve been gone from this site for over three years now. Much has changed since then, personally and globally. I’ve moved houses, switched employers, abandoned a couple of hobbies, and taken up a couple of new ones. Three years ago, I felt like I didn’t need a personal blog. Social media didn’t quite replace blogging, but it made blogging less […]

Japan, Day 1: Arrival

Japan, Day 1: Arrival

This was the beginning of my ten-day trip to Japan. I had planned to travel with a friend who’d been to Japan before, but his availability evaporated about a month ahead of time. So I went alone. No tour guide, no backup. Just me, my wallet, and a small suitcase of clothes. I had two flights to Japan: one to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), and another to Narita. The flight to LAX was perfectly, blissfully uneventful. […]

Normal Blogging

A little social media navel-gazing: I’m sick today, and in that frustrating middle on a bunch of projects.  Not that I have the energy to work on them, but at least I can stare, bleary-eyed, at my list of Projects between bathroom runs. (And I do mean runs.) I have a 40-page setting guide that I’ll release when my season 3 of the Monsters of the Shattered World podcast gets out of the editing stage, but it looks like that won’t […]

Fish and Chips, Middletown MD

Fish and Chips, Middletown MD

One advantage of being the only customer at a restaurant: my lunch came out in about 5 minutes. Today, I’m wandering around Middletown, Maryland. It’s one of many Middletowns, this one nestled between two ridges. An important rest stop in the steady river of trade between Baltimore and the west during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, it slid back into a sleepy backwater town as larger highways arose in the last hundred years. Unfortunately, […]

BattleTech © Catalyst Games Labs

I finally get BattleTech

I remember standing in a hobby store with my older brother. He was probably there to buy more Car Wars material. I had been wandering the dusty aisles, past ziplock bags of dice and rules printed on dot-matrix printers. I reached up to a shelf and pulled down a book covered with giant robots. It was a BattleTech manual. (I think it was one of the early, unauthorized Robotech supplements, thus proving that anime […]

'Victorian House' by roarofthefour on Flickr

My dream house

Last night, I dreamt of my house. When I dream, I frequently find myself living in this particular house. It’s a two-story Victorian with pale yellow siding. I live on the first floor, with its living room and kitchen and bedrooms in the back, and I barely ever think of the second floor. In the dream, I need something or want something on the second floor, or I have to escape from something horrible downstairs, so I go up. The upstairs is lovely: large […]

'some of the girls' by arrogant on Flickr

Now I Know the Meaning of Slitches

My co-worker Tim and I stepped into the American restaurant on the corner. The bleary-eyed maitre’d pointed us towards a table near the front, part of a trio enclosed by glass on three sides. One of the other tables was empty. The third hosted four women, all in their late 20’s, who wore name brands and talked louder than absolutely necessary. Tim and I sat, our server took our drink order, and the woman at the far end said, […]

The Best of Margaret St. Clair cover

The Best of Margaret St. Clair

I have no idea when or why I bought The Best of Margaret St. Clair (public library). It sat on the bottom of my to-read pile as it grew to skyscraper heights. By the time I got around to reading it, it was an orphan. As it happens, Margaret St. Clair was a science fiction writer of the mid-twentieth century, a feminist and rough equivalent to Marion Zimmer Bradley. This book collects a handful of her short stories, all of which provoked total […]

Center for Puppetry Arts

A few weeks ago, I happened to have a free day in Atlanta. I drove up to Peachtree Street–the main one, not the hundred other ones scattered around Atlanta–and fired up my iPhone. I looked for interesting locations nearby. My eye fell on a dot labelled “Center for Puppetry Arts.” One long walk later, I pushed open the double doors, walked over to a ticket booth, and bought a ticket to a unique museum. As a kid, I loved the Muppets as much as anyone, and felt […]

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