progbear: Major-General Progbear (Default)
Self-portrait from Crockett Hills, displaying my hair fresh with henna:

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Well, it’s finally over. Livejournal, I mean. I gave them fourteen years of my life, but that appears to be all in the past. Doing all my journaling here from now on, and no longer cross-posting. I’ll be deleting my LJ ere long, or at least “sensitive” posts. Don’t know if I’ll keep up with the weekly self-portraits thing. The Weekly Puck, which I just updated, is still going strong.

I have to say, I don’t feel that Dreamwidth has the community that LJ did. I mean, people do this “granting access” thing, but I can’t find a way to read their posts apart from actually clicking on their name to read all their posts at once. Am I missing something? I know that DW is not LJ, but I feel there must be something obvious I’m overlooking. Apart from that, it kind of feels like shouting into Outer Space. There’s something disappointingly lacking in communication about DW, at least that I have seen so far. Writing with no audience isn’t terribly satisfying.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait from the laundromat in Fairfax:

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[ profile] albadger and I watched more episodes of Stranger Things last week. I really like the way this series is progressing. They did a very good job with this, and I can’t wait to see the rest of the series, which should be tomorrow. In other good TV-related news, there’s a new episode of Steven Universe coming up this week!

I was inspired to write some more Confirmed Bachelors dialogue this week. I’ve also put out feelers to an artistically talented net-buddy of mine for concept/poster art for promotional purposes. And a very nice lady complimented one of the promotional videos I posted last year, and suggested I audition for local theater. It’s something to consider.

Still waiting on that job interview. Hopefully my sending out applications will result in one. In the meantime, I have another job offer waiting for me, so it’s likely I’ll be sending out another in the near future (like: tomorrow or Wednesday). Also: Wednesday is First Aid training up at Olompali, so I’ll be attending that. I don’t know if I mentioned it, but East Bay Regional Parks wanted someone with First Aid training, so this is definitely a good career move for me.

I’m finally on my own phone line. Carol and I had been on a family plan since 2012, and just this week I went down to T-Mobile to finalize the process. Another step in my continuing march towards complete independence...

I flaked out on The Weekly Puck last week. Super-sorry about that. I’ll present you with two this week, I swear!

***sigh*** Did anything else happen this week?
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait from the old road above San Pablo Reservoir. Trust me, the lake is back there:

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Saw my first bald eagle today! Just an immature fella, but still pretty amazing! I thought it was an osprey when I first saw it. I hiked way further afield compared to how I usually do. All in preparation for next week, where I take advantage of the fact that my park housing is paid for the month of November and spend every day hiking.

This week is also going to be all about stepping up the job search. Still no bites on the applications I sent out. There is possibility for employment in another field, courtesy of a friend, but I don’t want to talk about that just yet.

Next week, in addition to hiking, will be all about doing more shooting for Confirmed Bachelors. I’ll be editing the text I have now.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait from atop Vollmer Peak. Sorry about the angle (i.e.: no cool vista behind me), but I was a thrall to the sun’s angle:

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Got some hiking in on my days off, as you can see. Though it was so hot, I think merely existing got me some cardio! Looking out the window of the library and seeing the cool, gray, I can’t believe it was over 100°F earlier this week. Others want the warmer weather and they can have it. I thrive in cooler weather like this.

For those who haven’t seen it yet, I have finally posted the Confirmed Bachelors promo video that I promised. There’s an outtakes reel up now as well.
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Another self-portrait from between the park housing and the trail camp:

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Bad news first: I’m really feeling the pinch this month, money-wise. I was rather profligate during my too-brief vacation, in a month with a big car insurance payment, no less. And rent went up this month. Ugh!

But let’s not concentrate on the negative. On the plus side, it’s Labor Day. Actually, it’s after Labor Day! Meaning we’re past the peak season at the park. Meaning we maintenance folk can do actual maintenance instead of just cleaning restrooms all day! T__ and I went out in the Gator today to do some post-lunch clean-up, and if you could have heard the cheer we let out as we saw the gate to a particularly loathsome campground shut with a sign on it reading “CLOSED FOR SEASON,” you too would have been cheered. I suggested breaking out the champagne.

Strangest thing I’ve said in a while: “This toilet brush looks like Liza Minnelli’s hair.” Cruel, yet true.

And the good news just keeps on a-comin’! Finished shooting the Confirmed Bachelors promo video, and I’m roughly half-way through the editing process. If I’m very diligent, I might be able to post it as soon as tomorrow! It’ll be up later this week for sure. And let me tell you how much it delights me to see characters I’ve been writing about for months finally come to life, even if it is just me playing both parts on a spare “set” and skeletal costumes. In the meantime, my latest Vlog:

progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
So...I don’t know if anyone has been following my Vlog series on Youtube, but here’s the latest news:

I don’t know, maybe I can only concentrate on one creative project at a time. But I know that Confirmed Bachelors is the way to the future, not more tired internet movie reviews.


Aug. 3rd, 2015 06:33 pm
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
Self-portrait from the Parkridge Gate of Chabot Regional Park:

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This week was my Safety Presentation on poison-oak at work. I didn’t have the printed material that I wanted because the printer at FedEx Office was on the fritz (Isn’t it their job to have working printers?). No matter, because I had an effective visual aid: real poison-oak mere steps from the maintenance shop. More than I remembered being there, as co-worker K____ pointed out. Conveniently, there was also some stinging nettle, allowing for a double learning experience. Since the park aides from Portola drove all the way to attend my presentation, it’s good that I got to kill two birds with one stone like that.

Updated the General Miles laptop to Windows 10. Not everything about it I love (like the ability to select which updates I want), but on the whole it’s a vast improvement over 8.1. Much better to have a real Start Menu, rather than the buggy, fake one that came with 8.1. In all, I am quite pleased.

Not a whole lot of news on the Confirmed Bachelors least not yet. I’ll be posting a video with updates about that and my future of making videos soon, including a pretty big bombshell (which some of you will probably have seen coming). More on that later, though...
progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
This week’s self-portrait from the streets of San Francisco:

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As you can see from the above image, I turned up at Dore Alley. Too late to have fun or anything, but I was there. Lesson learned: don’t bother unless you have the day off and can show up when people are still around.

Progress on Confirmed Bachelors is happening in exciting ways. More episode ideas, including some partially-written stuff and a tentative episode guide. I’ll be making a new update video soon, so watch my video page, and I’m making tentative plans for concept art for a new FB page for the series proper. Also working on a promo video with me playing both Charlie and Oliver. More on these things as they develop.

Finished playing though the entirety of my collection this week (more or less randomly). It went like this:

  • First song played: “Bang, en boomerang” by Svenne & Lotta, 9/3/2014, 7:43 PM

  • First album played: Aftenlandet & Regnbuefuglen by Anders Koppel, 9/3/2014 7:46 PM

  • Last song played: “Sì” by Gigliola Cinquetti, 7/25/2015, 1:52 AM

  • Last album played: Duke by Genesis, 7/25/2015, 12:32 AM

  • Funnily enough, with the new playlist started, Aftenlandet & Regnbuefuglen was the fifth album played! Anders Koppel was the keyboard player from the Danish band Savage Rose, and this 1977 album is the soundtrack to a Danish film called Aftenlandet (English title: Evening Land). From IMDB: “Made with a cast of 192 non-professional actors, Evening Land continues to explore the form of fictional documentary intervening polemically into a period of intense debates about the media, worker militancy, terrorism and the anti-nuclear movement.” Sounds very 1970s and very Danish. Amazingly, the soundtrack album is now on Spotify!
    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    Self-portrait from the Union City civic center area:

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    Jeez, this week couldn’t end soon enough! Crazy busy week at work, it was like a holiday weekend without the holiday. We were short-staffed on Monday, so T__ and I wound up working 45 minutes over. Also, N___ and I left early on Saturday to carpool up to Napa to take an aptitude test for [undisclosed State job]. Seven hours of driving for half an hour of filling in circles with #2 pencil. On top of all that, it was hellishly hot for most of the week. Doesn’t do much for my energy when working, especially when working my butt off.

    I did get copious amounts of work on Confirmed Bachelors. I haven’t been this excited about a project in a while. Currently working on a funny little promotional video in which I play both of the main characters. More on that as it develops, until then, there’s this:

    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    Self-portrait from Los Altos’ Civic Apricot Orchard. Yes, that’s a real thing!

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    Well, it seems that A___ will no longer be my roommate. Or my co-worker. He handed in his two weeks’ notice. Just in time for the new guy to start, funny that. While I look forward to having total privacy again, I’ll also miss someone to chat with after work. He’s a nice, witty guy and he keeps the place clean.

    I’ve [pretty much] completed the first draft of one episode of Confirmed Bachelors and am [more or less] two-thirds of the way through another. I also have an “important speech” for a third episode completed and am laying the groundwork on a couple of other “important speeches.” I am pleased with the progress of this project; it’s come along faster than I had expected.

    Back on the work front: upcoming tests for other State jobs. Keep your fingers crossed for me.
    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    Self-portrait from Hayward Green Belt along Ward Creek:

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    Unfortunately, this is not the photo of myself that I wished to share. I think my phone’s SD card has outlived its useful life. The time has come for a trip out to Frys to buy a new, better one.

    Continuing work on Confirmed Bachelors. First draft of the first act of two episodes already in the can. Broke ground on the second act of both episodes. Considering having the non-first episode be the actual “pilot” episode, as it features a dramatic monologue contrasting the comic portion of the episode. I feel having an episode featuring both comedy and drama better represents the series concept as a whole. The first episode is more or less completely comic, and is also somewhat overloaded with period references. The other strikes me as a bit more accessible.

    Oh, also this:

    Looks like I’ll be giving a safety presentation on poison-oak later this month at work. Wish me luck!

    Light Tile

    Jun. 29th, 2015 06:02 pm
    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    Self-portrait from Santa Cruz city streets, reminding me that I’m overdue for another photo taken at the oceanside:

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    Work on Confirmed Bachelors is continuing apace. I already have the first draft of the first acts of two episodes complete. Cross your fingers that this project isn’t another that I’ll leave partially finished before abandoning and having nothing come of it. When it’s at a later state of development, I’ll start thinking about crowdfunding options. And if/when I find a suitable actor who’s game, I want to film a table-read to help drum up interest. More as it develops...

    I was bummed by the passing of Chris Squire over the weekend. Yes were one of my favourite bands, a serious highlight of my discography that I never get bored with. Fragile and Close to the Edge are still in heavy rotation at Casa de Progbear lo these many years later. The bass is an instrument I rarely pay much attention to, but I certainly did when Mr. Squire was playing. Just check out “Heart of the Sunrise,” he defies being ignored.

    Park-housing-mate A___ is currently on vacation in the Sierras. I feel like such a slovenly housekeeper compared to him; I returned to the park this week to find the stovetop, toilet and bathroom/kitchen sinks spotlessly clean! I ought to be ashamed of myself!

    Í dvala

    Jun. 23rd, 2015 07:33 pm
    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    Self-portrait from the back deck of the Union City Public Library. You can’t really tell from this shot, but the deck is over a pond/moat full of waterfowl:

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    Well, I found inspiration again. I recall [ profile] albadger criticizing that my tele/screenplay ideas were un-produce-able, with my big ideas overreaching my resources to actually get them made. My latest idea is different. It’s a TV series idea centered around just two characters. The working title is Confirmed Bachelors and it’s about two men co-habiting in 1880s San Francisco. Really, the expenses would mainly go towards costumes and sets, and of course actors. One of the leads could be played by me (at least in the pilot) until I found someone more suitable. This is something I see as a crowdfunding possibility to get the pilot produced and then...who knows?

    I might need to do stuff on the Movie Explorer channel again. The whole idea behind the Movie Explorer was really to drum up interest in Marblehead Manor. MM is still on the back burner, but I think Confirmed Bachelors has a lot more potential to actually get produced because it’s a “smaller” project.

    On the work front, A___ (a co-worker) moved into the other unit in my trailer. Apparently, he had been co-habiting with his girlfriend but they both decided it wasn’t working out, so now he’s at park housing. He’s a pretty cool guy, so we’ll see how this works out. I liked my privacy, but I was also really lonely there for a long time.

    Rubber Boy

    Nov. 25th, 2014 05:45 pm
    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    In classic [ profile] thornyc tradition, this week’s self-portrait comes to you from a public restroom, this one in the Cactus Taqueria across from the Rockridge BART station:

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    The major activity of the week was seeing a production of Little Shop of Horrors in Alameda with [ profile] albadger and [ profile] scottasf. It was immensely entertaining and, more importantly, got me away from Berkeley on a Cal football game day. We had dessert afterwards at this place called Bambú that served boba drinks.

    Speaking of “entertaining,” my new favourite character from Dragon Age: Origins is Sister Theohild, the somewhat ditzy priestess outside the Chantry in Denerim:

    An example of her words of wisdom:

    “Those who bring ham without provocation to the least of his children, are breaded and cursed by His hand.”

    It always puts a smile on my face.

    Well, I’ve put aside any illusions of finishing my NaNoWriMo book by the end of the month, since I’ve still yet to finish Chapter 1, but at least I’ve laid the groundwork. Maybe when I quit wasting time on this silly game, I could pick it up again.

    Plans made for attending the Dickens Fair have been made, in a couple of weeks. I’ll be wearing the Major-General Progbear outfit I wore for Halloween, hopefully with upgrades and improvements. More on this later.
    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    Self-portrait taken at the sporting annex behind UC Berkeley’s Clark-Kerr Campus, adjacent to Claremont Canyon:

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    Well, I’ve come to the realization that I’m not going to come anywhere close to “winning” NaNoWriMo, but I’ve broken ground by actually starting on the idea I had, and that’s kind of what I wanted, at least in part. Any writing at all is better than no writing, right?

    No unemployment checks came this week, but my belated tax return finally came and that’s something. I’m still a long way from going broke. Apparently, I was “ineligible” for a check one week because I worked two days that week. It’s their confusing rules, not mine. I’ll figure it out eventually. Wish me luck!

    I flaked out on two group hiking opportunities this Saturday by oversleeping. I made up for it by going out to Redwood Regional Park for the first time in ages on Sunday. Alone, alas, but it was my trip after the bears’ jaunt to Canton for dim sum earlier on. I hadn’t done that in a while, my previous experience had not been a pleasant one. On that occasion, I was at a table with an insufferable food-snob who refused to allow anyone to order pork buns, dismissing them as “tourist food.” No actual Asian person I have ever met has objected to pork buns (one actually said something to the effect of, “What an asshole! Pork buns are delicious”). My experience was much more positive this time; no food-snobs and I got my delicious pork buns!

    In gaming news, still puttering through Dragon Age: Origins. Dwarves in states of undress and in a compromising position behind the cut )

    Suction 8

    Nov. 3rd, 2014 07:00 pm
    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    Halloween self-portrait, in the same outfit from last week, at Berserkeley Espresso with the wonderful [ profile] albadger (not pictured):

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    I’m generally (no pun intended) pleased with how well my Spanish-American War-inspired outfit went over. I attended a party on the Day After wearing it, and had a grand old time. Brought my now-infamous tomato-soup spice cake for the potluck. I actually arrived with something of a sick headache, but using the Mom cure of drinking a can of the provided 7-Up™ seemed to do the trick. Did a fine job of meeting people and getting together with others I hadn’t spoken with in too long.

    I’ll surely be re-using the outfit come Dickens Fair season, which is in a couple of weeks. It could still stand to see improvement. I have decided that the placement of the safety pins that hold the epaulets on aren’t well positioned; they ought to be at the thin end, not in the middle. I’ll see to that. And when at the surplus store looking for accessories, I was sorely tempted by the “crackerjack” trousers, which cost about the same as a tank of gas. I was rather glad I passed on them, as the thought of fumbling with thirteen buttons to take a leak was rather terrifying; but I ought to think about investing in a pair for future street-fair wear and such.

    [ profile] albadger told me I looked a bit incomplete without a hat, and I agree. I did see some vintage kepis way in the back of the aforementioned surplus store that would be appropriate, unfortunately a) they all looked a bit too “European” and b) I dared not even ask how much they cost. The other option would be a plumed bicorn hat. It’s funny, when you see posed portraits of U.S. Army officers with a bicorn, they generally (except for General Miles, who was a bit of a peacock) posed with it held under their arm; apparently even then they began to think they looked a bit silly.

    Perhaps costume rental is the way to go. Oh well. Next year.

    Finally got a bit of work done on my NaNoWriMo submission yesterday after two days of tumbleweeds. At least the ground work is done. I am going utterly without outline, which is exciting yet could be disastrous. We’ll see. Hopefully my new Dragon Age: Origins addiction doesn’t detract too much from my writing.

    Received my last State Parks paycheck last week. Wish me luck with the unemployment!
    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    Self-portrait from Union City:

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    Quite a lot of stuff happened this week. I thought stuff would be settling down by now, but no, it’s still coming at me. Helped Carol install a new faucet on the kitchen sink, so I’m feeling a bit accomplished there. And today I bought the last of the raw materials for this year’s Halloween costume. Not giving anything away, but I had to go to the fabric store and get a few items.

    This coming Thursday is my phone interview with the unemployment folks. Apparently, I need to convince them that I’m worthy of receiving funds. We’ll see how that goes. Oh, and I just got a copy of Dragon Age: Origins in the mail, so if productivity goes down, it’s because I have a new, colossal time-suck. It looks fantastic on the new lappy!

    I’ll be attending Game Night tomorrow and a B’GRL PRTY post-Halloween Halloween party on the first of the month; hence the costume. Improvements in home internet are on the way as well, which will come as a huge relief. Maybe that means the Movie Explorer may return but we’ll have to see. I still plan on taking part in NaNoWriMo in November. Hopefully Dragon Age: Origins won’t detract from that.
    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    Self-portrait from Fremont city parklands surrounding the Main Library:

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    So, as you probably already know, my last day of work was on Sunday. It’s not entirely over because I’m going back down tonight (celebratory dinner in the seasonal housing area, apparently), staying the night and then packing up and giving back the key tomorrow. It’s a bit hard to adjust, as this has been my life for most of this year. I recall driving past the Sequoia Group Camp, wondering what things they might need next week and then remembering that’s not my job anymore!

    So, while I’m looking forward to having more free time, I do hope things go all right in the near future. I did already file for unemployment, down at the café in Pinole. [ profile] albadger joined me there to help me get my tax situation ironed out. That man at the very least deserves a gold star. Getting the State Parks application printed out for next season is something I’ll do over the course of the next week. I was hoping not to need to do it again, but then, getting a job in another district was not something I expected at all.

    Considering taking part in NaNoWriMo this year. It’ll be a bit of a “sanitized” version of my “steampunk” fantasy story that I’ve been working on since the start of the year. Actually, a different story featuring some of the same characters, with a similar tone, just minus all most of the gratuitous sex and fetish appeal stuff.

    And...I owe you two Weekly Pucks this week. Since you’re probably jonesing for a Victoriana fix, in the meantime, enjoy this post.
    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    Self-portrait from the bayside, near Rodeo/Hercules:

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    Sigh. Had to miss Dore Alley for the first time in years. It was just not in the cards. I have to admit, I do love my job, but it can be really lonely work sometimes. I wish I knew how to meet people better. I don’t know anyone in the Santa Cruz area.

    Had the strange experience of someone creating fan-art based on something I wrote. Strange, yet wonderful. I’m immensely flattered.


    Mar. 24th, 2014 05:21 pm
    progbear: Major-General Progbear (My handlebar)
    Self-portrait from Kennedy Grove. Just capturing the state of the handlebars:

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    Just got an e-mail from the lady at Samuel P. Taylor State Park saying they’re hiring and a call from a man down at Big Basin scheduling an interview. So I’m still not 100% sure where I’ll be working/living by April, but it looks like my life for the next nine months is going to be very different.

    I did pizza night this past Thursday, where I met up with [ profile] hardybear for the first time in ages. Did the circuit of Hayward thrift stores; there’s a new one in Eco Thrift’s old location on Mission south of Industrial, so now there’s three to choose from. Also visited the Union City Library, which has a deck that overlooks a pond with geese and ducks. Most unusual.

    I’m wrapping up the writing project that has occupied most of my free time since the New Year. Now at 40 chapters, it’s looking as though it’ll be complete by about 45-50. My faithful readers are going to hate me for all the dangling plot threads and sequel hooks I’m throwing out right at the end, but it will have a decisive finale.

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