30 June 2008

I got through one rank of Savage Orcs tonight while watching 10,000 BC. I wasn't very impressed with the film (maybe I should have read some reviews before I rented it), but it passed the time. Only four more ranks to go. After that the Spider Riders should go pretty quickly and then it'll just be a matter of deciding what to paint first. Pretty exciting stuff.

Tomorrow I get to work on finding a decent insurance quote for my bike and then get it registered, as well as taking the test to get my learner's permit. Once I'm all legalized I'll probably try taking the bike for a spin around the trailer park, hopefully not running over any dogs or small children or tipping it over and embarrassing myself. We'll see how it goes.

Something That Makes Me Mad, and an Explanation

We have a laundry basket that is really small at the bottom and fairly large at the top. If you put any amount of clothing in it the basket becomes top-heavy and tips, dumping the laundry out. Usually it falls into a dust patch or some dog hair and the clothes get all dirty. I don't think it's possible to describe how much I dislike this particular laundry basket. I may throw it away soon.

I've had a few people ask me what hammertoes are. It's not really all that cool. It just means the front joint of the toe is bent rather than straight, so my toes are always curled. The funny thing is that I would always see other people's toes and wonder why they were long and straight, like monkey toes or something. It turns out I'm the weird one.

29 June 2008

Here's a slightly better picture of the bike:

Oooh, shiny!

28 June 2008

Change of Plans

The other day I went to the Cycle Gear shop to look at helmets and jackets. I didn't really find anything I liked, but there is a Yamaha dealership next door and I figured I'd go and look at bikes since I still had a few minutes before work. I hadn't really ever stopped at that place before, as Yamaha doesn't really make starter bikes and their sportbikes are way out of my price range. But, as I was perusing the used bike selection I saw a 2004 Yamaha FZ1 with only 2800 miles on the odometer priced right around what a new Buell Blast would cost. I wasn't planning on buying a bike until next month as I don't even have my license and technically can't ride it yet, but I went home and looked at insurance rates and bike reviews and decided at least go in and see if a deal could be made. Long story short, I bought the bike and they threw in a free helmet and some gloves. The picture isn't very good, but here it is:

It's a pretty crazy bike. It's so big and powerful (140 Horsepower!) that I am actually kind of nervous to ride it, so I'll probably wait until I've finished my STAR safety course, which is an entire month away.

I haven't got a lot more done on my Orcs and Goblins. I generally work on figures while watching a movie, and I haven't watched any movies in the last couple of days.

25 June 2008

My toe isn't broken, it's just genetically deformed. So that's good news. The doctor said, "On the x-ray it looks like it could be either a dislocation or a deformity. I'm not really sure which." So I said, "Well, do you want to see the other foot?" He thought that might be a good idea, so I took off my shoe and sock and he saw my other toe and said, "Ah, it's just a deformity then. You've got a matching pair of hammertoes." So far my hammertoes haven't actually helped me to do funky-fresh dance moves while wearing baggy pants, but maybe I just need to put some work into it.

I'm still plugging away at my Orcs and Goblins. I'm not really looking forward to cleaning the lines off of all my Savage Orcs, and the Snotling Pump Wagon looks like it's going to be an absolute beast to put together. The Forest Goblin Spider Riders shouldn't be too hard, though. Maybe I'll get around to actually painting some miniatures this year.

I signed up for a few classes this fall, so hopefully I can pass those and bump my GPA up to a slightly more respectable level. I may even get a degree out of it at some point in the next few years.

24 June 2008

Today at work I dropped a decking beam on my toe. I tried to walk it off, but it is huge and purple and I'm not entirely sure if it's broken or not. So in the morning I'll have to waste a bunch of time going to the doctor to find out. Hopefully it's just horribly bruised and I don't have to break our year-long injury-free streak. I have no desire to be the guy who breaks the streak, especially in the current economy as there has been talk of drastically reducing the hours of less-productive people.

After struggling with superglue for an hour last night without actually getting my Goblin Spear Chukka to stay together I went out and got some two-part epoxy. It's messy and smelly, but the parts went right together. I've just got to put together some Forest Goblin Spider Riders, a Snotling Pump Wagon, and finish cleaning up my unit of Savage Orcs and I'll be done assembling my 1000-point force. Then I get to try out my gesso primer and get to painting.

23 June 2008

If you don't read my wife's blog or talk to us in person regularly you may have missed our big news. On Thursday we went in and had an ultrasound to look at the baby. The really good news is that the baby seems to be healthy and have all the proper pieces. The other good news is that we're having a boy. So that is pretty neat.

I've been cleaning and assembling my 1000-point Orcs and Goblins force. It's actually a rather small-sized army with only three units of infantry, a unit of cavalry, a couple of chariots, a Spear Chukka, and a couple of characters. I wonder how it will stand up against the numbers of the Skaven army. I've been reminded of how much I dislike working with metal models as compared to plastics. They are a pain to clean flash and mold lines off of and customization takes so much more effort. I am glad that Games Workshop seems to be moving toward producing more plastic kits. I need to pick up some two-part epoxy tonight so I can finish assembling my figures. I am too suspicious of spraycan primer to use the stuff I've got, so I went out and bought a bottle of gesso as that's been talked up on The Miniatures page quite a bit. I think the effort to brush it on is worth the extra time if it means avoiding the chance of having the spray stuff ruin twenty figures.

15 June 2008

For miniature wargaming I've acquired a few things over the last month. I picked up a unit of Savage Orcs at 50% off and this week I picked up two of my favorite Games Workshop recent releases, the Ork Big Mek with Shokk Attack Gun and the Ork Trukk. I really like the greenskin models both in Fantasy and 40K. They have a lot of character and humor in them, probably moreso than any other army in the Warhammer universe.

D & D 4th Edition got released, and I've had a chance to look through the Player's Handbook a little bit. There are plenty of reviews on the internet that go into more detail than I can. I was a little underwhelmed by the character creation process. It's been simplified quite a bit, perhaps too much. Multi-classing is gone, as are a lot of Feats and abilities that were present in 3.5 and allowed players to make characters with some variety. It feels like each class has only a few viable options and paths to take, so every class is going to be one of two different branches and have extremely similar powers. Gnome PCs are gone, as are Half-Orcs. They've been replaced by Dragonborn, Tieflings, and Eladrin. The Dragonborn are pretty cool and Tieflings are moderately interesting, but with Eladrin, Elves, and Half-Elves all being playable races the Elven races are extremely over-represented. I'd like to have Half-Orcs back. Druids aren't in the book, but the Wizards website promises that they'll be in a future sourcebook. Rangers lost their ability to have animal companions, which is annoying, although the Wizards site also mentions that perhaps a future feat will give them the option to obtain one. Barbarians also didn't make the cut. Overall it seems like a lot of fun options were cut from the last edition to make the game more accessible to the lowest denominator. But I wonder if I feel that way just because there aren't any sourcebooks outside of the three core books on the market at the moment. Wizards promises to release approximately 3.2 million D & D sourcebooks per year, so I'm sure character variety will be opened up to players with the pocketbook to absorb the cost. I guess we'll see how it all works out. The new combat system is a lot less frustrating to sort out, so that's a good thing.

I guess this is the week that we find out the gender of our kid as long as the necessary plumbing is visible in the ultrasound. I still think it should be a surprise for when the kid is born, but that's not a battle I'm going to win.

12 June 2008

I had a post partially written out about the last couple of weeks, but it wasn't even interesting to me and I canned it in favor of this note to let everyone know I'm still alive and not feeling very much inclined to post.