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Monday, July 15, 2019

Five Things I Think, July 15th

Occasionally, that muse walks up and smacks me in the back of the head.  Having thus been thwacked again today, it comes time to disgorge a wall of words to the blog.

1)  Little Danger turned 9 this week.  For almost a decade, I've been privileged to walk around under the mantle of Dad.  I can't imagine how the days have gone by so quickly, yet there they are, stretched out behind us.  Fortunately, there are some days stretched out ahead as well.  And today doesn't look half bad, either. 
There are days when he can prattle on and batter my frontal lobe into submission under a verbal assault of statements about absolutely nothing.  There are days when this tapdances on my last nerve.  Then I think about the fact that teenage years are just around the corner and I'm going to be starved for more than a 3 word sentence.  Maybe I'll just enjoy the logorrhea.

2) I've recently been recruited to become an assistant coach for Little Danger's football team.  Whereas I am a fan of the game, and a fan of the kid, I have dived ahead into this adventure.  I do have to postpone a bucket trip, but the boy is worth it. 
The challenge, of course, is that I didn't play football at a competitive level at any point.  The good news is that I've been digging through some videos about the fundamentals, and it translates to body mechanics that are similar to the fight choreo I've been teaching for over a couple decades.  Making that transition should be achievable. 
This also gives me an opportunity to do a bit of conditioning on my own dad bod while I'm at it.  This is going to be a wild ride, well out of my comfort zone.  I look forward to it.  (I am also looking forward to the boy resuming his pancake stacks and sacks a plenty.  Oh, yes.)

3) I started playing a new game with a new group, every other week.  This one is Wrath and Glory, the newest RPG in the Warhammer 40k setting.  It's an interesting, if currently rough, game.  The rulebook is a bit disjointed and has been handed off to a new company for a second print and continued development.  Nothing with 40k licensing is ever really easy, it seems.
The game itself follows a Deathwatch kill team, and we are ridiculously overpowered.  Our first session featured us happening to a group of Orks, unleashing a torrent of ammunition as nonstop and brain numbing as a a politician's twitter account.  Gratuitous is the word, I think. 
Laughter and fun were had.  No drama yet, but there is already some foreshadowing about insurmountable odds.  Well, that's why you send Space Marines.

4)  I think I had a great nature encounter with Little Danger.  I walked out of the barn in midday, and had to stop in my tracks.  There, just across our bridge, stood a denizen of the great outdoors, just half hidden by the trees.  I ran, quietly, back inside.  I grabbed the boy and we stealthed our way out, taking a seat in the grass.
"Whose butt is that?" I asked, pointing.  An odd question, you might think, but 1) butts are hilarious to 9 year olds and 2) that's the part we could see.
"A deer!" he replied.  And we watched as she took a step back, revealing her forward half, and stared at us for about 2 minutes before walking off into the tall grass.  I do like the country livin'.

5) I've been deeply examining the amount of scar tissue and baggage I walk around with.  Often, I wear it lightly.  At other times, it feels like a battleship chained to the psyche.  In any case, I think it's time to take the proverbial scalpel to some of it...some of these things feel like they belong to somebody else, that person I used to be.  They probably do. 

Monday, June 3, 2019

Five Things I Think, June 3rd

Thinkin'.  Writin'.  Sometimes procrastinatin'.

1) I think sometimes things line up, and you get a Big Weekend.  I just had one of those, filled with lots of experiences of differing type and flavor.  I loved it.
     We worked some tornado clean-up, watched Little Danger's baseball game, and had a gaming day of Dark Heresy (40k).  There was a bit of swimming pool and general relaxation thrown in there as well.  Reinforcing the lesson for LD of "work hard, play hard, relax like a cat." 

2) I think it's refreshing to see communities come together when shit goes down.  I further wish we could come together more often when shit isn't hitting the fan, but I will take what I can get.
     Memorial Day brought a supercell to the north Dayton area, which proceeded to pronounce a hearty "fuck you" with a host of tornadoes.  The biggest of these was a confirmed F-4.  We drove right out of the southern edge of this bad boy about 5 minutes ahead of it.  Little Danger asked how we would get away from a tornado if one happened...well, it turns out the answer was "what we're doing."
     There has been no shortage of volunteers working up that way, from folks grilling and working the food bank to folks bumrushing damage areas to work clean up.  Saturday, Wifefish, Little Danger, and I joined a group in one of those neighborhoods.  I grabbed the chainsaw and we toted the work gloves, water, and even some donuts and coffee to hand out. 
     I can't say we had fun, exactly, but we worked hard for a morning.  We impacted only five homes or so, but if you extrapolate the number of people doing what we did...well, there's a reason they say many hands make light work.  It was rewarding as hell, and if you ever get the chance to be part of disaster relief, do it.  Just do it.  We aren't working in there for days on end, but if everyone gives a few hours, or a few days, the insurmountable eventually becomes recovery. 
    I asked LD how he felt about his morning's work, and we explored that for a bit.  "We filled somebody's bucket", he said.   I love how he gets it.

 Also, that giant kid walking right there next to me?  He's about to turn 9. 

3) I think I am quite happy to see webshows like Critical Role and Shield of Tomorrow becoming so popular.  These gaming sessions on display show that particular magic of shared storytelling that brings adventure and hilarity and even drama to a game table.  People love these shows because they get to share in the fun. 
    Sunday, we played another installment in a Dark Heresy game we've had going for about a decade now.  That may seem a long time, but our games were quite infrequent in the early days. Our GM has a way of making things smooth when we come up with crazy shit to do, and a way of storytelling that immerses a player in the story.  Legends were continued, rugs were jerked from underfoot, confusion reigned, and hilarity ensued.  I've said it before, and I'll say it again...a day spent at the gaming table with good friends and good food is a day well spent. 

4) I think my yard is out of control.  The mower went down, and the repair guys have had it for 2 weeks now.  We have a lot of yard to mow, and I really miss my zero turn with the 60 inch wide cutting deck.  I never thought I would twitch and wish for a chance to mow.  Adulthood is fucking weird.

5) I still love living in the country.  The spring has gifted us with some giant morels, some tree frogs and salamanders, a gazillion lightning bugs, and a planting day wherein we put 197 trees in the ground.  Most of them are growing, though I do have to get out to that field and cut back some grass around them so they can have good light and such.  It is the season for fires and friends and bug spray, and I look forward to it.

Well, that's what I'm thinking today...Happy Monday!
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