Union Boss

March 19, 2015 Leave a comment

I was called this yesterday.
Took until today to make me realize it is somewhat true.
Also the fact that people want certain things from me and demand a lot more than when I was just a stagehand is so bizarre.
Doing budgets.
Setting up committees.
Follow through.
And if I fail I will be blamed.
And then called a union boss.
My training was not for this.

Categories: Scare Yourself

PI Day

March 14, 2015 Leave a comment

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The most delicious day of the year.
Or one of the most delicious if you celebrate some of the other PI days.

Also having recently replaced the pedals on my bike and feeling confident of the time I rode into work.
Stopping for pie.
Luckily the Dhalia Bakery is on my way to work and they had some 6″ pies I could bring in.

But before I made it there I happened by Mercer.
I had a stop in Belltown and cutting across Seattle Center was easier than any alternative.

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While the Mercer Mess is still a shit show the underpass is coming along.
I hadn’t known about that bike lane and I’m excited for it go in.
There are additional lanes along 5th which will be great once they open.
Not exactly separate from the sidewalk but that yellow line had some texture so there is some feeling change to separate the two.
Can’t wait for those pylons to come down and this to be opened.
It’ll be a nice change from how that section used to be,
Now if only the Ballard Bridge would get some improvement so I could go back to going along Myrtle Edwards to get to the Labor Temple.

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PI Day in the Allen saw each of the stagehands bringing in pie to share.
Good to know who takes this day seriously.

Categories: Bicycle Adventures

Discworld

March 12, 2015 Leave a comment

I don’t reject Fandoms.
There is an old familiarity and understanding of being a pariah because of a fandom. That bitter feeling of rejection because you liking Star Trek while no one cared about or that the love of Anime when most people only knew is Hentai or complaining about the national expansion of Loveline and the lose of the community feeling.
For much of my life I always felt one step away from a pariah and while many were my friends I was often accepted in the bigger world but I had to be careful.
Or so it felt and attending an all male high school made this all the more obvious.
Still in 1996 or ’97 I was at a Blockbuster video and Carmen, my sister, saw Discworld, felt it looked funny, and told me to rent it. Still learning what this new generation of video game meant I was debating between some shooter, some flying game, or this puzzle game. What made me rent it is beyond me but I did. Perhaps it was the warning that there was sexual innuendo, or Eric Idle, or knowing deep down that Carmen is so much cooler than me I rented it.

Frustration and hilarity filled that rental period.
I don’t believe I had a memory card then or if I did I couldn’t a save file because Discworld required too much space. So I played the first hour or so again and again. Didn’t help that point and click adventure games are not my strong suit. Often I can’t get into the logic of the game and have problems and I hardly would think to look to the Internet. If we even had the internet then.Yet this game intrigued me. I wanted to beat it and liked Dune 2 before it I felt the answer may lay in the source material.

I found “Small Gods” at Borders. The lone Discworld novel in their fantasy section. Not being aware how extensive the series I bought it.  The style of Discworld written without chapters and seeming like Sir Terry Pratchett was telling me the story spoke to my teenage self. Here was something that it seemed like no one else knew about. Later I would find a few other books. Men at Arms at Barnes and Noble,  a forgotten copy of Faust Eric at Waldenbooks, or the UK release of Moving Pictures at Crown Plus when they went out of business. My collection slowly grew but I felt all alone.

None of my friends had heard of this series. No adult seemed aware.  Had I been more into DIY or idealistic I would have made a zine about it.
But I didn’t.
The few people I would talk to about fantasy seemed clueless and I felt alone.
Constantly on the look out in second hand stores for old releases of the early stores. Hunting library sales on the look out for them and hoping there would be a new release.
The Long Beach Public Library filled in the gaps but only as a loan during the summer of ’98. Learning how to use the inter library loan I read my way through the series and found his other books. The Johnny Series, Strata (still a favorite even if I’m not totally sure why),  and the Nome books. That summer despite having to attend summer school and feeling a bit without purpose I dove into the Disc.

Around then my family went from pay by the hour internet to unlimited and I found some community. I joined the Discworld MUD at that point but I tended to play games solo so I was never a big member of that community. Still I learned of upcoming books, or events, and found people that were bigger fans then I could ever be and I checked in now and again as time allowed until college.

When I moved to Las Cruces it was the first time I had to decide what mattered to me.
I packed some clothes but many books.
I read, reread, and escaped into those books again during my first semester. I also played the MUD a lot. Not like some friends that would risk expulsion because of Ashron’s call, Everquest, or WoW but I spent a lot of time logged in. Which may have also been why I was so lonely that first few months.
Sometime in my second semester I drifted away from the MUD. I still read the books but was not as involved in any online community. By sophomore year I had some friends that I would argue fantasy novels with. Most had not read Discworld or dismissed them for other works fantasy but if I made a comment about 1 in a million during an RPG session I would receive caution about setting up a Discworld situation.

And after college I continued to read the books. Bought them on occasion and maintained my collection of the series. I had found other novels as the years past but even today I remember the day I found many of the books in hardcover at Value Village. The shock and wonder at this discovery. Part of me still looking for these novels when faced with a pile of books and on that day it paid off in a way that my 16 year old self would have loved.

But I don’t consider myself part of the fandom.
Nor any fandom for that matter. Yes I am a fan and yes I am saddened by the death of Sir Terry Pratchett but I while I am sad I don’t feel so alone. The days when I would talk about Soul Music and receive looks of confusion are gone. The difficulty in tracking down the latest release are over. Nor do I have to hunt through dusty shelves of a second hand store hoping to find a copy of Witches Abroad. (Which eluded me until I found one at a garage sale by pure luck) Sure I meet people that don’t know the series but it is not exclusive like when I found it.
Not tucked away in a fantasy section but out in the open.  Yes I am sad because of the lose of this writer but I learned things from his novels.
Learned that the Darkness should be feared but be controlled. That containers change what is contained in them or that racism effects people in many unforeseen ways. And that luck can beat fate but you shouldn’t expect luck to save you. These novels challenged me to think and consider other views. It showed me the new ideas through humor and for that I will be forever grateful.

Old Friends

March 10, 2015 Leave a comment

Over the past week I ran into two friends I have not seen in quite some time.
The first was while working a show at ACT. We had opened house and I came back to the booth to prepare myself for a show when I looked out and saw what looked like someone I knew.
Debating if I should go and see if it was them I ultimately chose to see if it was her.
This was a stage manager I had done several shows with years ago.
At a different and a little difficult theatre which was the last place she would work. She had a great passion for theatre but that place was burning her out. Asking so much and giving so little in return and in the end she found that becoming a therapist was a better fit. To hear that she had transitioned to that and enjoyed it quite a lot made me happy.
How things change.
For an example

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So Many Years Ago

That was me years ago wearing the candle hands of Lumier from Beauty and Beast.
A fun show to run except the 48 hours I was trapped in Issaquah Washington when a snow storm set down upon the NW.
Great times even if they had to end.
I look at the folks in this picture and many have moved on and changed. I was force out because I made some bad choices and frankly the theatre did the right thing in getting rid of me. But that is a story for another day.
But damn to run into someone like that was quite interesting.

I am once again visiting California because something happened to my family.
Odd how that works out but I managed to finally see one of the few people that I have been in communication with since high school. Not constant communication but off and on since I was 18. The amount of time we have known each other could now drive which is a frightening thought. Thinking about her I remember either the 14 year old I met when i was 18 or the stoner that she was when I got back from college. She is now a single mother paralegal really getting her life together.
It is a good thing to see and also see someone grow in that fashion.
No idea if she feels the same about me but for her to have aged, changed, grown, and become such an adult has been a great transition to witness.
Yet I am left to wonder about my changes and my growth.
But that is a worry for some other day.

Categories: Memories, Scare Yourself

A Week in a Suit

February 4, 2015 Leave a comment

On January 6th I was trusted by the members of my Local to be their leader.
Which means the focus of work on this blog will change from some of my stagehand work to one of leadership. It also means I will be scaring myself with beginning to dress in a way that I feel represents both me and my Local. This is really a big change and one I’m nervous about but feel like I’m prepared to do.

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So that’s my first suit.
Odd to write those words. In some ways I feel as if I have betrayed my family because they aren’t exactly the suit wearing type. Hell I recall my Dad dressing for a wedding in a pale blue shirt and some khakis. I didn’t learn to tie a tie until last year. It was not something that really mattered until recently.

Frankly I was tired of being just another shabby stagehand.
That was part of the scare myself that got me dressing better but I have never spent that amount of time in a suit. And I will say it was both nice and quite interesting because this is something I have never done.
First off the amount of pockets in a suit are great.
I am a huge fan of pockets and tend to use all the ones I have. The number of internal and external pockets in a suit are great. I had no problem carrying all the things I tend to carry. Also despite the suit being wool it seemed very light and required me to wear my overcoat when I was outside of the time I was outside in North Carolina.
Second changing only minor elements did cause a different look.
Different tie or shirt or even doing without either caused a different look. Hell the day I had to speak before the International Leadership I made sure to have the one that was most formal looking. That is not something I am used to with my other clothing where I need to have a whole variety of elements to change the basic look. Kind of refreshing and interesting. I recall reading about this on a site but didn’t fully take it in until in that situation.
Good times.

Lastly the fact I felt more professional.
I mentioned to a friend that when I flew in wearing a blazer and slacks I was called Mr. Ponce at the airport while I hadn’t heard anyone else greeted in such a manner. Most were merely told to have a nice flight. Similar treatment on the way back.
Then there was better treatment at a few places I went. I tended to have breakfast or lunch at a little coffee shop near the hotel. After the first time they learned my name and asked me how my trip was going and what was going one. I realized later in the trip that they may have thought I was lawyer because the court house was near that place but that treatment as a professional was different from people nearly thinking I was homeless as I had in the past.
Yes I will continue going with this route.

New Years Ride

January 2, 2015 Leave a comment

First off I broke another spoke.
Once again I am getting tired of that little fun bit of biking.
Checked manual and tried to see if it might be me but so far I highly doubt it is the way I ride and it might be a weight thing but even with my bag I am below what my bike could take.

So I’m a bit annoyed by that but just a bit.

Yesterday I realized that I hadn’t gone for a  ride all year and decided no time like the present to resolve that issue. Pulled out my bike, after a quick check of my tires and they seemed good and went for a ride.
Call me crazy or what have you but I headed North along 8th instead of South as I originally thought.
It was a clear day, by no means warm, but not rainy and figured why not muck about and I hadn’t been to Carkeek Park in quite so time so why not.

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Thing I found was riding up hill in the cold is hard.
Real hard on my muscles as they tighten up as I rode. Stopped a bit after chucks to rub my legs but frankly it wasn’t too bad once I got going.
Still I thought sweating a bunch during summer was bad but the sudden charlie horse as I rode was more annoying than dripping sweat at my destination.
Which was a park.
A park where a hike leads to a railroad over pass and a beach.
But there was no rack so I didn’t lock up my bike.
Decided I should head to Chuck’s I did.

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so many people

Despite living in Seattle a number of years I have not frequented Green Lake to even the extent that a weekend visitor has. Just not a big fan of the number of people but realizing this and the new year I figured why not head down and give a quick lap around the place.
After all why would people be out?

It is amazing how wrong I am as the walking path is crowded by people having similar thoughts to me. Deciding that a lap around the lake is a good thing to do on this the new year. Every few minutes I’d have to ring my bell as someone had drifted into the bike lane. And for once I didn’t care about seeming too arrogant of biker to signal these people.
People with dogs, or kids, or giant strollers. All going along the path and drifting without attention into the bike path. Little to no care in the world, not that I had much in all fairness because I was just out for a jaunt.

Still more than halfway around the Lake I decide I’ve had enough and head to another destination.

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Over the last year I watched as the bridge counter filled.
During the last few weeks there was a but a sliver left before reaching the one million mark.  So when I went over to get a picture and saw that it was empty had a bitter sweet tinge to it.
I had made a number of trips over that bridge and now they were erased.
Well 2015 I plan to make a few more, that is once my spoke is repaired… again.

Stupid spokes if it keeps up I am going to get something heavier duty done because the weight doesn’t bug me but having to constantly repair my spokes do.

Any way good ride and unfortunately it will be some time before I get another one.

Solstice Ride

December 21, 2014 Leave a comment

When I left this morning drizzle and minor winds were the expectation.
Now if reality follows expectation that’d be a grand thing in deed.
Still I am fairly certain I rode during the summer solstice and now doing the winter had me reflecting on the differences in the year.
Over the summer I road in pants and a t shirt only to arrive a bit sweaty but not overly disheartened by the whole journey as I gained an increased farmer’s tan from the long hours of sunlight we experience in Seattle. Often going the opposite direction of traffic as I went to work as others headed home or riding in the 5 am twilight to a very early call with only a light cotton jacket against the predawn chill.
Glorious times to ride and the weather felt on my side.
While this morning was a bit warmer than expected I still left in gloves, a base layer, work shirt, wool coat, and scarf. Only a couple of bikes out and most on their way to the Fremont Market.
But the sun was out, the winds were blowing me side ways as they had last night and I go into today know that from here on out there will only be more sunlight as the new year begins.

As I waited for my call to begin I noticed a coworker had a helmet on his bag.
Previously he had asked me a few questions about biking in and also noted with our daily parking going up $5 a day looking for a way to save a bit of cash would be helpful. And to be honest not paying for parking is something I enjoy. Also the cost savings in gas and weight losing has been very nice.
Yeah I didn’t expect to enjoy biking as much as I do.  Especially the last night rides through darkened quiet streets. Just me going along my way in a silent town. Quite the feeling especially on those long summer nights but right now in winter those moments do come much earlier and last longer but it will be nice to get a bit more light on the morning commute.

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