My office is an unusable mess at the moment. This is good. Since the water damage it has stayed in a pretty ugly state of disrepair. The walls had gaps and holes were unfinished and looked really bad. I’m no handy. That gene ended with my Dad unfortunately. But I do have some handy friends. Joeyjoe has been gracious enough to come over a few times last week to mud my office walls. The mud (henceforth called goo) is a pretty amazing product. It fills all the holes and cracks to create a nice flat surface. If you get it on the floor it rubs off. Add too much? It scraps off. It is very forgiving. We have applied three coats and many of the ridiculous imperfections have been fixed. And there were some incredible issues and sizable gaps to fill. Bdot and I are even starting to contemplate paint colours and desk options. Phew. A huge thanks to JoeyJoe, obviously nothing would have been possible without your guidance (and tools!). Thanks buddy!
We invited a bunch of friends over for a pre-Christmas gathering. ‘Tis a busy season and sadly only half showed up. It was a fun but fairly low key evening. The party goers ended up playing Cards Against Humanity. JoeyJoe won. Not sure what that says about him.
Sunday we were pretty bagged. I still feel tired but have a ton of errands to run today. So…. update y’all later.
Sabres got robbed against the Hawks. What an officiating joke the NHL is some nights. The game was virtually penalty free. But I guess the NHL darling Hawks can’t get beat by the lowly Sabres so the refs called TWO penalties with less than 3m left to give the Hawks a 5 on 3 powerplay. The Hawks pulled the goalie for a 6 on 3 and eventually scored. Seriously… how often are double minors called on the same play… let alone with under 3 left to play. Never. They aren’t. Sure the Sabres got a make-up call in OT and could have still won in the shootout… but IMHO they shouldn’t have even been there. Disappointing.
Another lovely summer weekend has past by. I spent the past weekend at JoeyJoe’s cottage near Brighton, ON for the annual ‘Boyz Weekend’. Regrettably both MikeMike and nIVEK couldn’t make it which was disappointing because they are great guys and were missed. JoeyJoe picked me up Thursday and we spent most of the day cleaning the cottage after we arrived. We picked up fish and chips for dinner after passing on chicken as we couldn’t tell if the restaurant was open or not… It was odd. All the signage was removed from the store. There wasn’t any indication the store was actually open and serving and not renovating or whatever. The fish ended up being delicious so… *shrug* JoeyJoe has been mudding and sanding the cottage so it was a mess. There was dust on everything. I’m sure we emptied that poor little vacuum six or seven times. The cottage was much better once we cleaned but wow… drywall dust makes such a mess.
Dean brought both his kids up on Friday. I’ve never met his daughter before. She is a typical nine year old ball of energy. Dean’s son Henri also came up for the weekend. Later in the evening Captain and his brother Andrew arrived. So with the gang all present the good times began. The daytime highs for most of the weekend were ridiculous nearly 40 degrees. So any physical activity resulted in a sweaty t-shirt and exhaustion. Unfortunately the shoreline around JoeyJoe’s cottage is really weedy and gross. As hot as it was I still didn’t want to swim in the water – which is saying a lot.
We did manage a few activities. Last year we tried in vain to take down an old tree fort. This year we thought about how to take the tree fort down instead of just smashing it. Go figure. In less than 15m of strategic hits the tree fort was down!
Off and on throughout the weekend we fished. Wow… after the incredible success of fishing in Apsley I was excited to fish again. But it was certainly night and day. Joe and I fished from the boat on Thursday. I caught nothing. He caught two fish. I fished every day, maybe 40 or so casts a day and didn’t catch anything. The only person to catch a fish from the dock was Henri. Hmmpt.
The early evenings were filled with mosquitoes who always drove us inside until around 9:30. Afterward we ventured outdoors to make a campfire. As usual, a small fire wouldn’t do.
There was plenty of drinking. And dinners were a big part of the evening. I was a little shocked at how much my buddies smoked. (And in light of my Father’s passing as a result of smoking – a little saddened as well) It seemed at times to be non-stop.
The kids spent a lot of time indoor playing with an old Xbox. The dated console still brought a ton of excitement to the kids. I played with JoeyJoe’s slingshot for part of one day. I launched peanuts all over the cottage lot. You can fire a peanut quite a distance. Although they are certainly not an ideal medium to fire. JoeyJoe enjoys feeding the rats (chipmunks) that inhabit the island. I bet they think of him as the Peanut God. They must… he brought a 50lb bag of peanuts up with him…
It was a fun few days unwinding with friends. We ate well. Drank well. And enjoyed a lot of laughs. These days are too few.
I was having issue with my older iPod. It would appear to be connected to the WIFI but there was no internet access. I found resetting the network settings helped. To do so: Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings
Strangely one of the first things that attracted me to linux and ubuntu was the incredible flexibility of the backgrounds. I love having random backgrounds. I also have a few Windows boxes. The Theme manager for Windows always seems to screw up… even on Windows 10. And it is really limited. (It is really ridiculous and embarrassing…come on Microsoft) Anyway…I just came across this little gem which I first found here. Wow! A solid wallpaper manager for Windows. Thanks John!
Another visit to JJ’s cottage near Campbellford for a weekend with the boyz. KK and I arrived mid-afternoon joining JJ, Captain, Ding and Captain’s brother. There was bacon, fire, table hockey, Leafs v. Sens, texting of ‘lovies’, chocolate, burning doors and no fish. It has been a year since I’ve been at JJ’s cottage. Since then he has upgraded it significantly. Yes we all crammed into JJ’s boy and fished for over an hour in three different places and didn’t even get a single bite. Fishing is overrated. As always we ate well. Well, poorly, but well. Captain and Ding BBQed steaks, tatters and chicken up the lot of us. Awesome job. Meanwhile the rest of us torn down a tree fort and created a 2m fire. *smirk* There was back and forth all night from the fire to the TV where the Sens/Leafs were playing. Eventually there was table top hockey game with Ding/Captain taking on nivek and I. We sounded crushed the infadels. There were many drinks consumed and frivolity. It was good to see the boyz and chill, even if it was just one night.
Sabres are now 0-3 with 2 goals in three games. Awesome. Let the suffering begin.
Bdot was away at a birthday party ‘up north’ back where she grew up. So I was left to fend for myself this weekend. I ended up only breaking one thing! *smirk* I organized to have some buddies over Saturday night, so Friday evening was spent getting ready. I’m not sure how I worked this all in… but… I walked the dog, got groceries, made chili for dinner during the week, tidied the house, finished most of the vacuuming and laundry and still watched a movie and most of a second. A friend recommended Apollo 18… I’m wondering if I was setup…? The premise is somehow footage from a lost Apollo mission surfaced and reveals a tragic mission to the moon. The footage is full of glitching and is awkward to watch for a lot of the film. I guess all the dark uncertain footage could create suspense. I just found it irritating. Also irrigating is how ridiculous the plot becomes. The plot take a turn towards the film Alien then spirals into an absurdly silly abyss. The acting was decent and I liked the characters, I wanted to like this Sci-fi movie… the premise was intriguing, but I just couldn’t buy the Alien-creature-brain-take-over plot again…on OUR MOON. These things are on the moon, killed a bunch of Astronauts and no one cared about it for 60 years?. Weaksauce. The second, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button was a movie that has sat in our archive for quite awhile… so I decided to give it a spin. It was much better movie. The movie follows the main character, Benjamin, from birth to death. When he was born he was discarded due to having a strange illness. He was born looking old and as he aged he became younger and younger. A curious case indeed. There are a few plots within the film… (Won’t mention them all) The film is based on the point of view of Benjamin’s love interest in the movie. She is dying and shares some final thoughts with her daughter, revealing her long relationship with Benjamin. The movie is a fun adventure. It is funny to see the ugly old man change into the dapper and handsome Brad Pitt. It is very well acted and very convincing. Quite enjoyable and moving.
I ended up going to bed pretty late. *smirk*
Saturday with the boys was a lot of fun. JC arrived first, which was odd since he is usually the last one who strolls in late. We talked for a bit then tried to get a multiplayer game going on the 360. That failed miserably. Mid-fail both Captain and KK arrived. We decided to focus on dinner instead: steak, potatoes, grilled red peppers and onions. KK brought the steaks (thanks!) and a bottle of very smooth Agave Leyva
Blanco Tequila. Entertainment was both NHL hockey on the TV and KK’s old school table top hockey game. KK’s game was a little different that the original I played a long time ago but it is essentially the same thing. I was surprising to give KK a 9-4 beat down. Yeah, that’s right. Captain and KK were found pounding on the drums periodically throughout the evening. It was a pretty chill night. I think everyone was pretty happy to have a good dinner and relax with a few bevies. KK and Captain stayed the night, JC left around midnight since he has to get his daughter to a hockey game in the morning. What a dedicated daddy. We stayed up for awhile after JC left… We started watching a Bond film but I was falling asleep, or maybe passing out… regardless that was where I headed to slumberland.
Sunday was low key. Watched some football, gamed and welcomed bdot home. Otherwise I didn’t do much… I was exhausted most of the day.
Spent the weekend at my buddy’s cottage near Campbellford this weekend. We were concerned the weekend was going to be rained out as it poured during most of drive up. However… the rain stopped shortly after we arrived and wasn’t an issue the entire weekend! Granted the nicest day was the holiday Monday and we left early.
It was a very relaxing and fun weekend. Joe and Monika were wonderful hosts. We ate really well and had few concerns during the weekend. Pat and Jenn were also up for the weekend and added to the frivolity. It doesn’t seem like we did a lot. Hehe… We went into town once, made a few massive fires, lit a few fireworks Sunday night but we mostly sat around, talked and ate. Which is just fine, I guess that is what a long weekends are for. We brought the dog up to the cottage for the first time and Joe’s daughter Ariel seems to take a strong liking to her. Thanks to everyone involved, it was a good time.
UPDATE! Heh… going through my photos I found a few surprises. Joe’s son Travis is a bit of a gadget geek. He likes to play around with cameras, ipods etc… any computer/electronic device he can find. Well… he recorded three videos on my camera. What a strange little boy… 😛
UPDATE! As promised a few more photos. Yes I went pro. I <3 flickr. UPDATE! My sister’s cat EvilChewy got outside and found himself locked out for a good part of Sunday. He mangled up some of his paws. Hopefully he is okay. EVIL!EVIL!
Gawd. I’m pretty tired as I write this… I was suppose to have had Monday off but being the stupid responsible employee I’m I called in to check the status of our game build. Well… I ended up getting called in and being there until 6AM this morning. Yes… another killer all nighter. We did have some yummy Thai and at around 2 we knocked back an energy drink. I’ve never had a Monster Energy drink before and reading the ingredients is confusing (Pyridoxine Hydrochloride? Mmm?) but it wasn’t so bad and kept me going the rest of the night. I usually can’t say much about the games we are working on until they are released, but since this is a DS and PSP release the game is actually getting some pre-release press. We are working on a port of metanet’s popular flash game N. 1UP has already given the game an overview. The game is certainly coming along. I’ve seen great improvements over the past two weeks. I’m quite excited about our first handheld ‘in-stores’ release and I hope it ends up being worth all the time we are all putting into it.
The weekend was great! The annual boyZ weekend was attended by MikeMike, Nivek, Joeyjoe, Captain and Daisy the dog. We invited a few others but for various reasons they couldn’t attend, their loss. This year we ventured to Joe’s cottage which he purchased within the last year. It is located about 10 minutes east of Campbellford, Ontario. Where? Here. (a short boat ride from the Percy Reach lock, Lock 8) Joe scored a sweet property, the lot is huge. The cottage has 3 bedrooms, hydro, septic, two decks and runs along a waterfront. Admittedly the water is rather weedy and skanky but Joe has access to the Trent waterway system so it’s a fisherman’s dream location. The weather was warm if not hot and humid for the majority of the weekend, so we spend nearly all the time there outside. We ate well, drank a ton and did some boating, burning and some yardwork around the property. We ran into various wildlife including a pair of mating snapping turtles, snakes and a pair of various curious foxes. I’ve never met foxes before. They were quite interesting…and were very brazen. They would come right up onto the deck and showed little fear of humans unless directly challenged. Hmm. We ventured into Trenton one night. The Canadian Forces base there is huge… the city was pretty dead. We passed three bars all of which were practically empty. Bah. It was a fun weekend, thanks to all that attended.
What a great weekend. It was ‘the boys’ camping weekend, this year we went to Sibbald Point. The weather couldn’t be better. Warm during the day, warm during the night. The site was awesome there were tall mature trees surrounding it. Six of us ended up going: Nivek, JJ, Captain, Ding and Chris. I heard about Absinthe
some time ago and figured this would be a good time to try it. Absinthe was interesting. Not what I was expecting. I’d describe it as a combination of
Zambuca, Scope and Tequila with a massive kick. We dropping flaming sugar into the drinks. The more you drank the better it got… the bottom of the drink was much better than the top. Or were my senses merely more acquainted? Not bad. NOt sure I’d get it again at $80 a bottle. No hallucination either… likely have to drink a lot, but wouldn’t that happen with any booze to some extent?
We kept busy during the weekend. Sibbald is clearly a popular location well known for its beaches. There were line ups of several kilometers to get into the park for day-passes. The beaches were fairly nice and extensive, there were several thousand people on them easily. The water was murky but not too weedy. We played volleyball quite a bit in the water. Other sports included a nasty game of hockey on the site lot, soccer and volleyball on the beach court as well. The evenings we primarily for fires and drinking. We were pretty tame I figure. Everyone is well past the ‘woohoo! I’m so drunk stage‘.
Nivek’s soccer ball exploded after being left in the sun. Pretty odd. We dubbed him Wilson and sacrificed him to the fire Gods. Many things were sacrificed to the fire Gods. On the second day we found a guy that sells hardwood just down the road from the park. What a difference it hardwood makes, it is well worth the drive. I found it odd not to see any raccoon, squirrel…no little land animals at all. And very few mosquitoes.
It was an egg-cellent time.
The weekend started off on the wrong foot. I got up and started looking for camping gear only to discover all my gear was at my parents. Sigh…! Fortunately B. had a tent here and it ended up being fine to use. The weekend was a lot fun and the weather was mostly decent. We got in some hockey, canoeing, poker, fire!, fire!, BBQ (yummy garlic burgers), tunes and drinkin’ (Rum, Mike’s Hard Berry (yum!), beer, Tequila shots, etc.) *Hangover avoidance tip* : Drink at least one 500ml bottle of water before you go to sleep. Works like magic. JJ rented some massive SUV (gawd! $50 for half a tank of gas) and got *full insurance*.. of course this led to *let’s take the SUV offroad*. The SUV handled quite well until the tire blew out. Nothing like changing a tire at 4 in morning with a nice breeze blowing in off Lake Huron. A typical boyz weekend of camping. Already looking forward to next year.
Silent Lake Day 1 – Friday July 26
I picked Pat up and loaded the car. While at Pat’s I came across an old Soviet Union flag he had… for Shits & Giggles we brought it along. (It became the weekend joke that we were comrades and such and created many great photo ops for us patriotic Russians! Heh… and the priceless looks on people as they walked by. Hehe…) Off we go Silent Lake… right into a traffic jam on the 401. D’OH! We crawled along for at least 30 minutes. We never did figure out why… bah. Anyways…We were trying to get to highway 28. At some point along the 115 it *said* we were on the 115/28 then suddenly we weren’t… Shrug. Eventually the 115 ended and forced you to turn left or right. I figured right… and bingo… came across the 28 in about 10 minutes. Odd. Once onto the 28, the rest of the way was easy.
The walk in sites at Silent Lake are very nice indeed. It was a major hike bringing in the gear to the site. Phew… ack. (Heh, later that night we found that the trail looped to the parking lot and was substantially closer up a little hill to the site… Sigh. It looked like a path to one particular site not to *all* of them. Oh well. No signage.)
Anyways… camping. Wow… I don’t recall such an amazing overall day at a Provincial Park. The temperature, lack of bugs, setting and company made for a wicked day.
Joe. Well to say I am disappointed in, who should have been, the fourth member of the camp would be an understatement. What Joe says and what Joe does is sadly often quite different. This has been the case for years. He claimed to have been ‘packed and ready to go’ and ‘leaving around 8 to avoid traffic’. His call fine. With the walk in we figured it would be impossible to find the site without a flashlight. So… Pat and I walked to the gate house (nearly 4km) and waited for him. And waited, and waited. No Joe. Sigh. So we walked back, had a beer then returned to the parking lot about 30 minutes later, still no Joe. I don’t know why I’m surprised. He has a long history of not showing and ditching us in spite of plans. Does he think we don’t worry or wonder what has happened to him? We got such a negative vibe about being screwed by him yet again. (He never did show, and sent no e-mail to explain why either. Nice.Thank guy.)
The walk was enjoyable however. The sky was so clear. So many stars, really mind blowing… we witnessed a massive shooting star as well… Usually they are tiny white streaks, this one was large and orange. Very cool. We wandered down to the canoe launch and laid on the deck and looked at the stars for a while. Ahh… relaxing. Even at night, it was still quite warm…off to bed… I hope tomorrow promises more of the same.
Silent Lake Day 2 – Saturday July 26
Still no Joe, we decided to call him. No answer. We abandoned hope of seeing him. It started as an overcast day, regardless of impending rain we wanted to rent some water craft and buzz about the lake. We rented a canoe and a kayak. The Paluski kayak was rather disappointing, it had a rudder but still tracked very poorly often veering off to one side or the other. Hmmpt. The lake is very big… I think we only explored a very small part of it before the rains came and we returned to the docks. There were little islands to visit and small harbours and scenery galore…
The rain gave us a chance to go into Bancroft and pick up a few groceries. While there we decided to walk around a bit. We stopped in front of a Real Estate office that had properties for sale in the window. A couple approached the window while we were looking at the pics. Then, the guy (from couple) (in spite of standing directly in front of them) pointed to a property grazing my hat. Yes I have space issues. Stay the f**k out of my space unless you are invited thank you. Once is fine, I ignored him, but when he did it again! I blurted a nasty “Excuse Me!” No reply. What is wrong with people? This guy must have been about 24 or so… Darwin please take him away. Gah! Some people’s kids.
After we returned to the camp… making dinner was interrupted by rain, rain and more rain. Sigh. After the fire failed we gave up, and fell asleep. Anti-climatic indeed.
Silent Lake Day 3 – Sunday July 27
We were awoken to the sounds of Gollum (another site had a young child who loved to scream and who’s parents sat idly by and did nothing when she did… we named her Gollum) It was pretty overcast again. After breakfast it began to rain. SIGH! We decided to drive into Peterborough. Amazingly Peterborough was sunny and warm when we arrived, but nearly everything was CLOSED! SIGH! We were simply looking for a pool hall… up and down streets we ventured – nothing… We gave up after 30 minutes and got some drinks and lunch at a pub on the main street… Pretty much the only business that was open. To toast the day we enjoyed a nice shot of Oban Scotch… I didn’t know I liked Scotch. It was yum! The waiter told us of a Pool Hall at the far end of the main street. We played a few games and returned to the site. Pat and I decided to do one of the shorter hikes at Silent Lake. ‘Bonnie’s Pond Trail’. It was pretty cool.. I took a fair number of pictures. It was mostly swamps and one nice lookout area. The trail was well marked and well maintained.
It was a good final night… we ate, drank and were merry… especially after we looted some neighbouring vacant sites of wood. Mmm fire good!
Silent Lake Day 4 – Monday July 28
Homeward bound today. A lot of packing indeed. People were already ushering us off the site before we were even finished packing! Argh, no matter I was eager to get going anyways. It proved to be a long drive home, traffic was awful. I don’t enjoy driving with Pat either, he is very intense to drive with – chill bro! Anyway. It was a great weekend, I wish the weather was better but, oh well. We had a good time regardless and Silent Lake is a very well maintained park. I will return for sure, hopefully with b.!