Category Archives: The story so far

We are going to move to Regina

I’ve attempted to tell share the news with as many people in as personal a fashion as possible, but at this point, I’d rather you hear it here than somewhere else.

Michelle has accepted a position with Saskatchewan Northern Geological Survey, based in Regina. She starts work January 2nd, though we’re not certain on the rest of our relocation timeline. We’re looking forward to real jobs, less rain, more space, spending time with old friends, and POÄNG armchairs. Especially POÄNG armchairs.

Oh, and gaming. Towards that end, I’ve created two blogs to serve as communication resources for fellow gamers in or around Regina.

I’m really not sure what will become of them, but at the very least they’ll give you an idea of what games I’m looking forward to running and playing in 2009 and beyond.  Perhaps there’s some place better to do this, but the only forum I could find seemed abandoned.

Please feel free to send any suggestions my way, or let me know if you’d like to contribute to either site.  In the meantime, feel free to pass or post along these links to anyone you think might find them useful.



Filed under Gaming (Video or otherwise), The story so far

My haircut

After more than five years of growth and four years of dreadlocks, I cut off all my hair.

A little bit at a time.


I was aiming for something Wheatonesque here.

I was aiming for something Wheatonesque here.

"Confused homeless man with neckbeard."

Man with neckbeard.

(Not a white supremacist.)

All the locks that weren't immediately claimed by donators.






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Go Play Northwest 2008


Earlier this month I had the opportunity to travel with two friends to Go Play Northwest, a “convention for people who like to design, run, and play independent role-playing games.”  It amounted to a weekend of solid story-gaming, as well as a chance to meet new indie-gamers, catch with up old indie-friends, and rub shoulders with indie-greats.  Fortunately for me, some of those fields overlap; fortunately those around me, I had the good sense not to use the word “indie” so often around them.

Personal highlights included:

In a Wicked Age: An utterly-irredeemable demon-child (played by my friend Daniel) riding his own terminally-ill queen/mother (played by me) down rough-hewn stone steps to an in-use torture chamber.

Destructicus Prime: a toy-based smash-up that opened with Ben launching a tank off a ramp (landing on and then smearing an entire dimetrodon across the arena) and concluded with three players so desperate for glory they attempted called-shots to a volcano–with their own vehicles.

Shab-al-Hiri Roach: Jackson’s physicist, so graviton-obsessed that he created a “Collider” to study the effects of dropping very heavy things on very breakable things. Just when I thought he couldn’t relate gravity to the religious ego-check I was delivering, he drops mention of Lucifer’s own fall.

Tunnels and Trolls: not story gaming per-se, but I was pretty chuffed when my faerie wizard “Whim” hollowed out the inside of a donkey-headed skeleton so that it might serve him as power armor/mecha.  That I was as a result later able to make use of a powerful but life-leeching magical item with no ill-effects was simply undead icing on the necromantic cake.

There exists a list of notable quotations from the convention; they will likely make even less sense out of context and to those unfamiliar with the games win question, but that should not stop you from scrolling down to the bottom of the page to read the my only appearance on the list, which I had no idea anyone had heard, let alone written down.

GPNW 2008 Quote Board, Day One

Though I’ve detailed a handful of independent games before, I’m including below links to additional games that I’ve played and would recommend checking out, no matter the cost to life or limb.

Free downloads
Dostoevksyan Murder Ballad | Drowning and FallingGeiger Counter | Perfect

Worth every dollar
The Big Night | Covenant | Dogs in the Vineyard | Don’t Rest Your Head | Dread | Fingerprints | Jungle Speed | Prime Time Adventures | The Shadow of Yesterday | Reign | Shock


Filed under Gaming (Video or otherwise), The story so far

We have a nephew

This makes us aunt and uncle.

That makes him punk.


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Photos: San Francisco

Short, and hopefully sweet.

San Francisco, December 2007 – a slideshow on Flickr

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San Francisco. Also: Bedbugs.

I met Michelle in San Francisco last weekend, just after she’d presented a poster at this year’s AGU fall conference. We stuck largely to the typical tourist fare: the Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Wharf, Haight-Ashbury, Mission burritos, etc.1 It amounted to a relaxing, if short, getaway. Photos will be posted to Flickr once Michelle’s had a chance to sort through the lot; she inaugurated her first digital SLR with this trip, and so might be extra critical of what is shared.

More than just the tacky refrigerator magnets and sourdough loaves, however, we brought home an extra-memorable souvenir of the trip. Maybe. Sometime during my second day of stay at our conveniently-located-in-Union-Square HI hostel, Michelle started noticing spots on her arms. Her skin is normally rather sensitive, and we didn’t make much of them until we arrived home. And she subsequently broke out again. This time much worse. Bedbugs were our immediate hypothesis; web-browsing and a visit to her university clinic confirmed our suspicions. And completely wigged us out.

Lice infestations may be common enough in elementary schools to dispel my connotations of parasites and filth, but we learned bedbugs are far more elusive and patient beggars, living away from their host and capable of surviving months without food. We meticulously searched our suitcases and clothes, then proceeded to (literally) turn our bedroom upside-down in search of any evidence. The insects themselves are 5mm long, reminiscent of an apple seed: not necessarily difficult to find. Yet, for all our work, we turned up nothing. No bugs, no eggs, no tell-tale fæces. Now this doesn’t mean that the fitful sleeping stopped. Nor the phantom itching. And certainly not the suspicion.

“Perhaps its just one.”
“She’s somewhere we forgot to look.”
“Between two pages of a book we didn’t open.”
“Or she scurried from the to-search pile to the already-searched pile while we weren’t looking.”

We’d stumbled upon the fallacy of a negative proof. Our house must have bedbugs, because we’ve found no proof that our house doesn’t have bedbugs. We might have searched as hard as we could, and I don’t think we’d have been able to find any proof that there were no bedbugs there. I immediately made the parallel to arguments for the existence of god(s) and couldn’t help but laugh. We were plagued by an infestation only of our consciousness. Evolution-wise, it makes good sense that our mind would favour a false-positive to a false-negative. Once we learned that Michelle’s second outbreak could have been a delayed reaction to initial exposure in San Francisco, there was just as little evidence that we’d brought anything home. The itching subsided. Our suspicion faded. We slept through the night. Friar Ockham be praised!2

1. I also managed a short pilgrimage to Brian Hibb‘s Comix Experience. If Absolute Sandman, Volume One didn’t weight more than 3 kilos I might have considered schlepping it up and down (and up) San Francisco’s hills.
2. Falling asleep one night, after the epistemological extermination, I couldn’t help but draw a further parallel between Russell’s Teapot and monsters under my bed. These applications of logic are left as an exercise for the reader. Perhaps tonight, as s/he is falling to sleep?


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Fiji, finally

Posted today at Flicker are photos from the final leg of our antipodean adventure. We took advantage of our free stop in Fiji to spend a relatively lazy week on the beaches of Mana Island, part of the Mamanuca archipelago, just west of Nadi.

Fiji (May 2007) at Flickr

Flickr slideshow : Fiji (May 2007)

There are additional photos of this trip available on Facebook. Look for us tagged in photos from our wonderful travel companions, Janice Brahney and Jeff Catterall.


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