Union Pacific's Great Excursion Adventure

“I want a QuickTime of my minty fresh entrance posted on my homepage… by tomorrow!”

comics and animation, everyday glory, geekery, music, news and info No Comments »

Thursday – 31 May 2007
And so, another month draws to a close.

Yin: I overslept this morning.
Yang: The barista at the caffeine dispensary made a mistake and gave me a large frozen mocha… for the price of a medium.

Starting tonight, I have the kids for a week.

I talked with Mom. She doesn’t remember talking with me yesterday… which I pretty much expected. She ‘splained what was wrong and what the surgery did – including the addition of a bit of titanium. I’m gonna start calling her X-23 or Lady Deathstrike from now on. I don’t think they added claws, but to err on the side of caution I’ll make sure that I’m out of arms’ reach before I call her either of those names.

Stray Toasters

  • I took my morning constitutional a little while ago. As I walked past a bird, it warbled and flew off. I had a Dr. Doolittle moment and wondered what it would be like to know what it was “saying.” That hyperlinked to a mental image of Tarzan. Then things took an even more odd turn, as the next mental image that popped into my head was NOT Shanna, the She-Devil or even Sheena, Queen of the Jungle. Those, I could have fairly easily explained. No, the first post-Tarzan thought was Jana of the Jungle. Whiskey Tango…?!
  • Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix’ opening date has been pushed up two days.
  • Knowing his affinity for most things zombie, I pointed Tyranist in the direction of this item from Marvel’s website.

[11:16] Tyranist: Wow. I guess Zombies are marketing gold.
[11:31] shadorunr: Apparently so.
[11:31] shadorunr: Cold and (un)dead are the new “in” thing.
[11:31] Tyranist: And normally I like zombies. Just not Marvel’s version. They . . . uh . . . bite.
[11:31] shadorunr: *rimshot*

  • My weekly work commute just got 32.31% shorter. (Where’d I put that Ares Alpha with grenade launcher…?)
  • scares me sometimes… such as when he shows me things like this.
  • By way of boingboing.net: The Battle of Ham’s Deep – Helm’s Deep made with Muppets
  • I was a big fan of Jonny Quest back in the day. While I get that it’s a parody/satire, I am not such a fan of Venture Bros. However, there are two things from the show that make me smile:
  • …and, speaking of Mr. Bowie: What in the Nine Hells is this?!

Time to pick up and put down heavy things.



everyday glory No Comments »

We the people,
In order to form a more perfect union,
Establish justice, insure domestic tranquility,
Provide for the common defense,
Promote the general welfare and
Secure the blessings of liberty
To ourselves and our posterity
Do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Okay… by a show of hands, how many of you were singing that as you read it?


dining and cuisine, everyday glory No Comments »

Ordinarily, I would be inclined to agree with the TANSTAAFL principle.

Today, however, I am eating Pollo Porcini Canneloni, with bread and salad – brought in from Ottavio’s for a meeting. One that I am not party to, even. But Mindy came by, asked whether or not I had eaten and told me to have at it.

And I did. And it was tasty.

“Carve away the stone…”

everyday glory, games, geekery, music, news and info No Comments »

Wednesday – 30 May 2007
I talked with Mom last night – everything went well.  Of course, I neglected to factor in time zones when I called, so she was already asleep.  I’m going to try again in a little while.
Last night was also D&D night.  wasn’t there, but we sallied forth without her.  Somewhat.  I ran her character.  *shrug*  Two characters, no big deal.  (I ran five in a campaign once, many moons past.  That was… interesting.)  I didn’t get her – or myself – killed, so I consider that an accomplishment.

This morning’s commute moved to the beat of my “Sex, Drugs and Rock & Roll” playlist.  A few songs came on that reminded me of people:

  • Lola (The Kinks) – I’ve enjoyed this song for years, but the thing that always makes me chuckle about it comes from high school.  A student named Brian, one year ahead of me, held an assembly which was basically a mini-“concert”.  He played the piano… and guitar, if I remember correctly.  He closed out the assembly with a great piano rendition of Lola.  It went over pretty well with the student body; the administration…. had issues with it.
  • Kiss Me Deadly (Lita Ford) – Johnny M.  He was one of the guys from my dorm, sorry “residence hall,” at Purdue.  And he had a HUGE mad on for Ms. Ford.  Massive.  Huge.  Ginormous, even.  I don’t know if it’s possible to wear out a CD, but I think that he tried to with Lita.  And he’d rock out to this song – and most of the others on the CD, too.
  • Love Rollercoaster (both versions – The Ohio Players and RHCP) – I first heard the RHCP version of the song, when it was part of the Beavis & Butt-head Do America soundtrack.  I remember thinking, “How long could it have taken them to write this?!  Five minutes, if that?!”  Then, I discovered that it was a cover of The Ohio Players’ song… which meant that the only new part of the song was the “rap” that Anthony Kiedis does during the bridge.  Right.  This reminds me of a former postal coworker, Chad.  We would often share a tape player or CD player at work – it was good for saving on batteries and getting some variety in what we listened to.  Even when I wasn’t listening to the same thing as him, I could tell when this song came on because he’d lean way back in his chair and his typing – already rather fast – got even more fast.

This morning also started in the SLC office, which is almost never a bad thing.
Stray Toasters

  • I, once again, managed to not spill my mocha on the way in.
  • Sisyphus
  • Last night, I went to a local grocery store to pick up a package of razor blades.  Actually, I wound up going to two stores – one was out of them.  *grblsnrkx*  At the second store, I found the razor blades… locked behind a plexiglass barrier.  Ô.õ  ?!  I don’t think that I’ve seen that before.  And it was just the blades.  The razors – including the multi-packs and some of the more expensive hand razors – were sitting out in the open.  Big as day, twice as bright.  It shocked me to also note that that locked up the razor blades… but left the condoms out.  Maybe they are more worried about kids going emo than the local birth rate.
  • He’s a little bit afraid of dying
    But he’s a lot more afraid of your lying…
  • Gear Clock
  • I saw this article and the first thing that came to mind was: “What would George Clinton have to say about that?”
  • I’m craving cheese fries and prime rib from Outback.
  • Finally, the perfect lamp for the chiropractor – Mortal Kombat fan – on your Christmas list.

Back to the mill.


A couple of quick hits

comics and animation, everyday glory No Comments »

Thanks to for sending a link to footage from the upcoming (new) Clone Wars.

And, Eric posted a link to One Two, One Two, a new Homestar Runner toon.
After the video is over, click “Mix Your Own Style” to use the Mix Mastah 800.

“Goddess in my garden, Sister in my soul… Angel in my armor, Actress in my role…”

comics and animation, everyday glory, games, geekery, monkeys!, music No Comments »

Tuesday – 29 May 2007
The first thing that went through my mind when I was typing the date was: “Tuesday is Blues day.” Bonus points if you remember what that meant.

A/another short week begins. Amen.

My mother’s going in for surgery this afternoon. From what I understand, it’s not a big deal, but it could/will prevent a much bigger deal. When I called her to say “Hi” this morning, she was in the salon, preparing to get her hair done. Before… going… to…. *sigh* Yeah. That’s Mom. Kris is going to call me, post-op, to give me the low-down on how it went and how Mom’s doing.

The commute was, for the most part, good. There were a couple of monkeys who made me wish that I had shock collars or a cattle prod, but the rest of the… huh, “a barrel” really is one of the names for a group of monkeys… anyway, the rest of them were fairly docile. This morning’s musical oleo came from my Rush playlist. (I’ll avoid making any other bad “Rush hour” jokes, other than that one.):

  • Cold Fire
  • The Spirit of Radio
  • Tai Shan
  • Grand Designs
  • Animate
  • Freewill

That made dealing with the road monkeys a little easier, too.

Stray Toasters

  • I had a cinnamon roll and a frozen mocha… which I managed to get into the building without issue this morning.
  • The Politics of Dancing
  • Go, Pacers!
    (Huh…? They aren’t in the playoffs? Oh. Nevermind, then.)
  • “Less Human Than Human”
  • Does anyone remember Gorf? I used to love that game.
  • As His Chocolate Holiness, I think that Derek deserves elevation to a position above “Acolyte.” Possibly even something above “Priest.” My inner anarchist – which in this case may be “my inner Antichrist” – wants to make him “Bishop,” just because of the fact that we are in Utah.
  • Alter Ego: author’s audio slideshow of gamers and avatars
  • Death by Pillsbury
  • I have made references to satisfying my inner Kryptonian/Daxamite while taking my morning and afternoon constitutionals. This morning, I came up with a variation on that theme: Who are solar-powered heroes/villains in the MU/DCU? I came up with the following:
    • Superman
    • Supergirl
    • Mon-El (M’onel / Valor)
    • Andromeda
    • Any other Kryptonian or Daxamite you’d care to name
    • The brothers Summers: Cyclops and Havok (I’m not sure abot Vulcan, as his powers haven’t been fully explained.)
    • Bizarro, I would assume
    • SunspotI’m sure that I’ve missed a few, but those were the only ones who came to mind.
  • ::: CLASSIFIED :::
  • 777-9311


“Day is done, gone the sun, from the hills, from the lake, from the sky…” *

everyday glory, news and info No Comments »

Monday – 28 May 2007
Happy Memorial Day.

It’s about more than cookouts and swimming and sales at the local shopping center.


* The subject line is taken from the first verse of Taps.

“Yo ho, haul together, hoist the colours high…”

comics and animation, everyday glory, IKEA, movies and TV, news and info No Comments »

Sunday: coda
I accomplished one of the things I had intended earlier today: I made it to IKEA.

Also on the list were: drawing (, I’ll let you know when I get started on that pic… which should be tomorrow morning) and going to the grocery store.  Those two things went *pfft* because I decided to stop by and see Kate, Perry and the kids.  Time well spent… and I can still do the other things tomorning.  I also had dinner with at Sampan.

This evening, looking for something to do, I decided to check out Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End.  I have to admit that it wasn’t the movie that I was expecting.  I felt that Dead Man’s Chest (or “Pirates 2: Electric Boogaloo”) was a decent movie… but it suffered from sequel-itis, to me.  And scenes like the swordfight-on-a-waterwheel – all forty-five minutes of it (yes, I know that it was shorter than that, but it just seemed to go on forever) – seemed like they were trying too hard.

I didn’t get that feeling from AWE.  The story actually moved.  And, I was especially taken with the opening scene: The subtle, somber-to-almost-uplifting defiance of the crowd was handled very well.  Yes, I can understand some peoples’ comments about too many interweaving plots, but I don’t feel cheated.  And, probably most importantly: The movie surprised me.  In more than one spot.  Just when I thought I’d come up with “viable solution x” to a problem in the movie, they pulled a Kobayashi Maru and came up with a different answer.  I’m not going to spoil the movie for those who haven’t seen it, but I will note that viewers should stay through the credits.  Additionally, there was a trailer for The Golden Compass before AWE that looked rather interesting.

Stray Toasters


“It’s oh so quiet…”

everyday glory, games No Comments »

Sunday – 27 May 2007
It’s been a very quiet, lazy day.

So far, the highlights have been:

  • Putting Corvus Nox through the paces in The Hollows… on a less-than-balanced team. I was the main healer, which is not a good thing. If anything, Nox is more of a field medic than a healer – I can patch you up… I can even resurrect you (as long as there are nearby enemies from whom I can drain life), but powerful heals are not my fortè. Needless to say, there was a good bit of dying spread around the team.
  • Taking a nap.

I’m a little torn between going to IKEA – I want to check a couple of things, now that the crowds have (hopefully) waned a bit – and heading to either Borders or B&N to do some drawing. Of course, the easy answer is: “Do both.” Which currently ranks pretty high on the list.

And with that, I’m a vapor trail.


“Tides respond to lunar gravitation, everything turns in synchronous relation…”

comics and animation, everyday glory No Comments »

Saturday – 26 May 2007
I just finished watching today’s Legion of Super Heroes episode, a rebroadcast of “Chain of Command.” Having already seen this episode, I could get past the “Wow… it’s an LSH toon” factor (a bit) and more fully appreciate the episode and some of its more subtle points.

The big one was a comment that Lightning Lad makes to Ferro Lad about not being able to trust him because he wore a mask. That got me thinking: How many Legionnaires have worn masks? Three… although, you could make a possible, though weak, argument for four:

Ferro Lad wore a mask because of horrible disfiguration. Wildfire’s “mask” was part of his containment suit – he was a being composed of energy and, outside of the suit, had no humanoid form. Sensor Girl’s mask was actually used to conceal her identity… from other Legionnaires and from enemies; she later revealed her identity to her teammates. Quislet was also an energy being, but his “mask” was actually a small “exploration vehicle.” And, in an interesting note: Although Quislet could not exist outside of his exploration vehicle for extended periods of time, he was able to teach Wildfire how to shape his energy into a humanoid form, without the need for a containment suit.

The rest of the Legion went maskless. Their identities were, as far as I can tell, common knowledge. They were not only deputized members of the United Planets’ Science Police – they were also seen somewhat as celebrities. I recall some issues showing panels of Legionnaires “out on the town” and being approached for autographs or holographic pictures. Legionnaires were also points of pride for their homeworlds. There were issues when a Legionnaire would lead a team on a mission to his/her home… and the world would roll out the red carpet, much in the way that Smallville (in DC’s original continuity) had sign at the town limits announcing it as “the home of Superboy.”

Another interesting point was how determined Lightning Lad was to save his homeworld. He was very take-charge and headstrong in his quest to see to it that Winath was saved… even to the point of ignoring all of the obvious signs around him. I don’t think that I had really registered the resignation in his character when his family farm was destroyed… and the only thing that he was able to save was one family “photo.” (It’s the 31st Century, it was probably a holo or some other digital image, but why quibble?)

I also liked the exchange between Superman and Lightning Lad, after Superman discovers that Winath is a farm world:

Superman: *surprised* “You’re a farm boy?!”
Lightning Lad: *indignant look and tone* “An industrial agrarian technician.”

I thought that it was nice to see Superman try to find some common ground with a teammate, only to have his comment sneered at because being called “a farmer” was insulting. As I posted in my previous look at this episode, some of Lightning Lad’s characterization was a little off… but I thought this was a nice – and amusing – touch.

All-in-all, I think that this was a solid episode.

“What a nice contented world, let the banners be unfurled…”

comics and animation, dining and cuisine, everyday glory, geekery, IKEA, monkeys!, music, news and info No Comments »

Friday – 25 May 2007
Aside from dropping my mocha – 23½ ounces of pure frozen mocha goodness – on the way into the building this morning, it’s been a good day. Quiet. Only a couple of very small fires to put out. And, I got a headstart by starting the day in the SLC office.

But there is still that whole “I dropped 23½ oz. of frozen mocha goodness” thing. *sigh*

Last night, some of the Clitorati got together for dinner at Olive Garden. I had one of the new featured dishes: Stuffed Chicken Marsala. It was rather good. I recommend it. After dinner, I went home, with the intent of checking my email and then spending some time on the mean streets of Paragon City. I made it as far as checking the email and starting the CoH loader. While waiting for a new patch to be applied, I went into the bedroom and stretched out on the bed, ostensibly “just for a minute.”

Three hours later…

Yeah, the only thing left to do at that point was turn off the lights and go to bed. And that’s what I did.

Stray Toasters

  • I have spread the Gospel According to IKEA to and onlyaly. They have seen the light. *genuflect*
  • knows of my… affinity… for IKEA. We were talking yesterday and this came up:

[15:23] asdf_cat: so i’ve realized something that might be a serious problem.
[15:23] shadorunr: ?
[15:23] asdf_cat: you.. drive by IKEA twice every day.
[15:23] shadorunr: Yeah.
[15:23] shadorunr: I know.
[15:24] asdf_cat: that just doesn’t seem safe for you or IKEA.
[15:29] shadorunr: http://www.applegeeks.com/comics/viewcomic.php?issue=165
[15:29] shadorunr: It’s kind of like that.
[15:30] shadorunr: http://www.applegeeks.com/comics/viewcomic.php?issue=166
[15:30] asdf_cat: yeah. a problem!
[15:31] shadorunr: Potentially.

  • Shortly after this conversation, I remembered that my weekly Status Report was due. And, since it has to go to Mr. , I attached the following to my report. And it took almost NO time to come up with. Apologies to Misters Lee, Lifeson and Peart…

We’ve taken care of everything
From food to eat
To sheets you clean
And hooks on which
Your wet linen can dry

Poäng for all, Amon for one
Put together
Groove and tongue
Lack – tables or shelving
Hung up high…

We are the priests
Of the Temples of Sweden
Our great furniture
Fills the hallowed halls.
We are the Priests
Of the Temples of Sweden
Sofas, beds and lights
Are held with in our walls

  • Derek sent me a link to this story, with the following commentary, which made me laugh:

[16:44] Derek: the title made me laugh more than anything
[16:44] shadorunr: Wow.
[16:45] Derek: now we know who let those mother freaking snakes on that mother freaking plane

  • just sent me a link to following “news story” (link below) from Utah ABC4. Could they sensationalize this any more?! Or researched it any less?! Monkeys.

[14:54] janietrain: You should be so rpoud of your locals.
[14:54] shadorunr: Hiya.
[14:54] shadorunr: Um…
[14:54] janietrain: http://www.abc4.com/mediacenter/local.aspx?videoId=65333
[14:54] shadorunr: MD or NC locals?
[14:54] janietrain: Utah locals
[14:54] janietrain: Check out that video.
[14:54] janietrain: You shall laugh until you pee.
[14:55] shadorunr: Very little that they do makes me proud.
[14:55] shadorunr: 🙂
[14:55] shadorunr: *watches*
[14:55] janietrain: hehehe
[14:55] janietrain: This is possibly the most out of touch, reactionary thing I’ve ever seen in the history of TV news.

If you like Gina Kolota
Getting caught in the rain…

And I’m going to hit “Publish” before Firefox decides to firmly insert its head up its ass. Again.


“Everyone has a home, but if you don’t have a home you can buy one there…”

everyday glory, geekery, IKEA, music No Comments »

Thursday – 24 May 2007
Another day at the desk, but yesterday’s excursion was a nice break to the middle of the week. This morning’s commute was relatively painless, and it was made better by the fact that Nomad seemed to be in a good mood:

  • Billy Ocean – Get Outta My Dreams, Get Into My Car (which reminded me of… this, again)
  • The Wiseguys – Start the Commotion
  • Snoop Dogg ft. Bootsy Collins – Undercova Funk
  • Outkast vs. Modjo – The Way You Move
  • Stevie Wonder – Superstition
  • Atomic Kitten vs. Geri Halliwell – Ladies Night
  • Red Hot Chili Peppers – Soul to Squeeze
  • Girls Aloud vs. Madonna – Some Kind of Beautiful Stranger
  • Rhythm Heritage – Theme from S.W.A.T.

Then, I got to work and found the following on my dry-erase board:

…which made me nearly double over laughing when I figured out what it was. For those who need a translation: “…just some oak and some pine and a handful of Norsemen.”  Now, I just need to figure out who put it there.


“IKEA: just some oak and some pine and a handful of Norsemen…”

everyday glory, IKEA No Comments »

Wednesday – 23 May 2007
I have been to the new Temple of Sweden. Amen.

I got up a bit earlier than I had planned this morning, thanks to a series of text messages. After deciding to forego any further sleep, I got up and started getting ready for my pilgrimage. With a few text messages and a little arm-twisting, I also managed to convince Liz that she wanted to go, too. And we did.

When we got there, the line wrapped around 3/4 of the building. Amazingly, it moved rather quickly. I think that we stood in line for a total of maybe thirty minutes, if that long. Lynn and Katarina, former coworkers from Shit Town the REC, in line. And there was… someone I recognized from asdf_cat‘s wedding and a party at everydave‘s, but his name eluded me.

Grand opening madness. Police. Monkeys. Newly-hired IKEAns clapping and shouting and waving. Did I mention “wall-to-wall monkeys?” *nod* Yeah. Monkeys, monkeys, everywhere. And, I discovered that many/most Utahns walk as poorly as they drive. Oh, well… at least they’re consistent.

When I got inside and upstairs, I figured out the guy-from-the wedding/party’s name: Christian. I confirmed it and then he, Tracy (his… wife, I think), Liz and I chatted for a few minutes while the Curious Georges milled around us. Then it was off to soak up the joy of contemporary Scandinavian design.

Given how crowded the top floor was, we opted not to eat in the restaurant. But, as crowded as the top floor was the ground floor – at least until you got to the checkout lines – was comparatively easy to navigate. I ran into Katarina and Lynn again, in the lighting section. They told me that Paul, another former coworker from the REC, was there… somewhere. I called to see if I could reach him; I did – he was in the restaurant. No go, Flight. I’d catch him another time.

I picked up a Poäng chair (with Almè natural cushion), to replace the one I gave away a few years ago; Liz picked up a lamp and some vases. And then… and then… and thenAnd then along came Jones. No. Wait. Wrong song. Sorry. And then came the standing and waiting in the checkout line. And then, I saw the cinnamon rolls. I had forgotten about them. *sigh* So, I grabbed a six-pack and added it to my items. Selah.

We checked out, walked out – that’s when I saw Paul, sitting at a window booth in the restaurant – and headed northward.

And that concluded my pilgrimage.

From there, we headed to La Puente for lunch; Perry joined us. And the three of us made a quick jaunt across the street to the good Dr. Volt’s for some four-color goodness.


(And, yes, Jonathan Coulton’s IKEA was playing in the back of my head almost the entire time I was there.)

“Remember the fifdee-tu!”

everyday glory, games, geekery, toys 1 Comment »

Tuesday: coda
The day ended quietly:  Dinner with and some time in Paragon City.  Selah.

Stray Toasters

  • I have Ben & Jerry’s Vanilla Heath Bar Crunch Ice Cream.
  • Into the Wind
  • 52.   (not a DCU reference, this time)
  • I’m running a Carnival of Shadows mission with my Supergroup.  In the back of my head, I’m hearing The Cruxshadows’ song Carnival.  It’s making me grin.
  • A couple of Bruce Campbell Old Spice commercials:
  1. Experience
  2. Hungry Like the Wolf

And that’s a wrap for now.

G’night, Skeets!

Pre-gym groove break

everyday glory, music No Comments »

< groove>

  • David Bowie – Modern Love
  • Prince – Starfish and Coffee
  • Jonni Lightfoot – WindowSill

< /groove>

What’s on your playlist today…?