Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Coffeeshop blogging

So I have a new laptop and it comes with an integrated camera for all your photoblogging needs as well as potentially embarrassing coffee spills. I'm at a local coffeeshop working on some, uh, work.

Once I set another laptop up for my wife, we'll be able to try video chat using Sightspeed, which from what I understand is similar to Skype video chatting, but I could be totally wrong as I've never used Skype before!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

A vintage Halloween pic

Vintage? Really? Halloween was only what - six months ago? Is that my timeframe for blogging? Can there BE any more questions (or Chandler references)?

Anyway, we cut a pumpkin on Halloween. 2007 - please. Wait...does the act of cutting the pumpkin turn it in to a jack-o'-lantern? I think so, but let's see. Wikipedia to the rescue!

Yes, it does.

So we made this jack-o'-lantern, and I kind of forgot about it for a while. Maybe just a week, but the spirit of Don know, that traditional apres-Halloween visitor...came by and, well, this is getting out of hand. Picture, please.

Wow, that's a lot of buildup. Hmmm...I meant buildup in terms of raising expectations, but I guess it works in the hair/mold sense as well.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Finally some action pics

I know - playing a child's guitar in my jammies with a micro-Mariachi hat wasn't actioney enough. To satisfy my rabid fans, here you go.

Living on the Greenbelt is nice! Whenever we want to bust out the firepit, I just go outside the fence and find a big log. I tried using an axe, but I've had much better luck with my reciprocating saw from Harbor Freight.

I've gone through all my demolition blades and now I have a pretty scary specialty wood-cutting blade. Itsa nice! By nice, I mean it looks nice - I haven't actually cut anything with it. But believe me - it looks like it will do the job!

Here I am sanding our deck. We rented a huge industrial sander from Home Depot, and it pretty much drove us around the deck.

It was time for another treatment of stain, and we didn't want a repeat of the original stain job (oh, the humanity!) to happen again. Last time we waited too long after we had it built and then waited until the weather was as hot as possible. It was awful. The wood was so hot the stain would not be absorbed, and it never got a good lock, or set, or whatever the term is to indicate that stain has soaked in to your wood correctly.

Now we have to decide whether or not to keep the deck or take it down and build a stone patio!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

My newest, cheapest guitar

So I was in our local Goodw*ll the other day and saw a guitar in their auction pile. Hold on a second - it wasn't just a guitar. It was a child-scale classical guitar, with case, and the best part? Two Mariachi, uh, hats.

Unfortunately, the hats were child-scale too.


The auctions are held on Saturdays at high noon, and I had a few reminders to make sure I was going to be there. Throughout the week the items are in silent auction mode, with binders out with pages for each of the items. On Saturday, in an bid (ha!) to get more money, the items transition to traditional auction mode, with one of the employees doing the auctioneering. The bidding started out at $16 and there was some back and forth between me and someone else behind me. I wanted to play fair, so I didn't turn around and psych him out. I just kept my cool and kept bidding. I stepped up to $21 - a level he dared not follow, and I won the auction!


The smaller scale doesn't bother me, but it is very resonant at the bottom end, so most of my work on it sounds bass-heavy.


You don't get to touch some of the items beforehand, as they are in lockdown in a metal cage. Once I got it home and started playing with it I noticed that there is some fret buzz on the high E string. It looks like I'll have to build up the nut and file down a string slot (thanks for the baking soda/super glue tip, Louis!) or replace the nut.

All in all, it's a sweet deal, as the guitar is solidly made, and you can't beat the price. We've used one of the Mariachi hats for a White Elephant gift (along with playing La Cucaracha when it was opened), and I'll have to bring the other hat up to work for the serious times