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Project Zero Three (A New Beginning): Day 200 Checkin [11 May 2016|11:20pm]
Another century of days. Some big events passed, and a bunch of little hits on long-term goals. Plus wedding planning; not enough of that, but enough to distract me from this list. But hey, just started using an app that gives me XP for completing tasks; as I load it up with this stuff, maybe we'll see more progress? Maybe?

Updates since last postCollapse )

As it stands, Day 200 (5/11); 6/101 DoneCollapse )

Completed GoalsCollapse )

Long-term list items (percent to go):

12. Origami Cranes (949/950 - 99.89%) (Still no change. Time for a new daily task?)
46. Pulp magazines (37/68 - 54.41%) (BIG work here- almost halfway done already. If I keep this up, I should finish by the halfway point... 500 days after the original goal)
48. Misc Movie List (18/22 - 81.81%) (A smidgen of progress... I'm actually pretty close to on target here. Dunno if I can finish, but I can finish those accessible at least)
49. VHS (23/23 - 100%) (Nothing done here except a mental recommitment, and a few more DVDs obtained and unwatched)
50. mp3s (255/264 - 96.59%) (Not very much, but a few)
58. Sushi (62/65 - 95.38%) (Another pathetic, delicious showing)
69. New DVD shelf (54/48 - 112.50%) (Huh. I thought I'd come out ahead this time, but instead it's slightly worse again. Must focus here, when entertainment focus is allowed)
76. Emily's Movie List (81?) (Still can't really work out the percentage here, but one down)
86. Classic “Who” (566/578 - 97.92%) (Some progress, but still stalled on reconstruction episodes. More to come, though)
96. Caching: MN Counties (35/35 - 100%) (Still no trips, but it's warmer now. Might be worth a Sunday or two outside the city)
97. Caching: Wildflower Parks (78/78 - 100%) (Ditto above, again)
101. Caching: 14 Events (13/14 - 92.85%) (One down! Any progress here is notable. Still, need fresh ideas to hit this more)

So, it rolls on forward. Another hundred days ahead; we'll see what I manage to scratch in that time.

Onward and upward.
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Overcommitment, Part... I have no idea, 17? [24 Apr 2016|02:17pm]
I posted on FB a couple of days ago, to share announcements that had just come thru about projects I'm working on. A new Double Bill podcast, audition announcement for Mead Hall, the FB event for this month's Game of Thrones themed Rocky Horror, and the event for Human Combat Chess. And in doing so, it became starkly clear how crazy much I'm doing. Because that wasn't everything- the podcast I'll be guesting within the next week, the show I'm writing for fall, the wedding I'm officiating next month, my own wedding planning, the half-dozen smaller writing projects I'm vaguely working on that don't have a deadline in place... No wonder I have to make so many to-do lists. And, of course, I can't think of a single one I'd want to withdraw from. Awesome.

That said, I just downloaded an app that gives me RPG experience and gold for completing to-do list items. We'll see how long that sticks.

The List, Day 183 (4/24); 6/101 DoneCollapse )
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Introvert energy [28 Mar 2016|02:16am]
So. Nosce ipsum. Or nosce te ipsum, I've never been fully clear- I don't Latin much. Either way, know thyself.

At work, there's a few workstations one can end up at. Basically- filling prescriptions, answering phones, typing prescriptions, or working the out-window, which includes both taking in new orders and selling completed ones. And I've always hated out-window; I try to work at that station my fair share, but it drives me bonkers. I always thought it was because I work better when there's a series of smaller projects to complete, rather than one long, drawn-out, never ending task that lasts until shift end. But, after over 10 years there, I realized the other, more central reason.

I'm an introvert. Introverts, by as good a definition as I've ever seen, are people who recharge with alone time. As opposed to extroverts, who recharge with social time with friends. I've known that for, really, my whole life. Known it by name ever since I heard that definition. But working out-window at work, and to a lesser extent answering phones, requires me to have constant short-term interactions with people, some strangers and some regulars. Potentially hundreds of those in a day. So my social energy leeches out of me. Whereas filling meds, typing prescriptions, or doing the dozens of little inventory jobs that are my responsibility and I rarely have time for, are perfect introvert activities. So yeah, the projects thing is true and probably helps. But it's the social energy battery drain that destroys me.

A decade that took to figure out. You're never so blind as when you think you're already seeing clearly. There's always deeper to look.

The List, Day 155 (3/27); 6/101 DoneCollapse )
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Mexico! Nevada! [25 Feb 2016|09:27pm]
So! Went to Mexico last month for a friend's wedding. There must be stories attached to that.

And there are! It was my first time in Mexico, first time at an all-inclusive resort, first for a lot of things. Emily came with, of course, and we ate way too much and slept way too much and relaxed to hell and back. We missed the chance at touring the Mayan ruins (by the time we realized it existed, it didn't fit on any days), but went snorkeling at a small reef, and got down to a touristy-area to find a couple of geocaches. Also I proposed and she said yes.

So. Yeah. Engaged. Making the plans now, and FREAKING OUT A BIT, but not at all about my choice. Emily and I fit together, and I was never more sure than when I dropped to one knee and she cursed in surprise. Perfect.

Everything that wasn't our engagement fell apart almost immediately afterwards, of course. I got held by airport security on the way back for reasons never fully explained, but I think my name is similar to someone on a no-fly list. So that should be fun in the future. The marriage we went down to attend ended the day after they got back, for Big Good Reasons. Which were... almost the worst timing possible. And I screwed something up, that's led to some friendship drama tangentially related to the trip. No idea when, or how, that's going to resolve.

Then, this weekend, Emily and I and mutual friend Scott (purplesquirrel1, though I don't remember how to do LJ links and don't care to check) head to Nevada for a day of Vegas, side trips to Hoover Dam and Death Valley, and a day of geocaching where we intend to top 400 finds. This is the year I leave the state the most, that's for sure.

The List, Day 124 (2/25); 4/101 DoneCollapse )
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Project Zero Three (A New Beginning): Day 100 Checkin [02 Feb 2016|04:09am]
Man, that passed quickly. Life has been busy. Still, managed to knock out a couple, and make great progress on a few more. As such...

Updates since last postCollapse )

As it stands, Day 100 (2/1); 4/101 DoneCollapse )

Completed GoalsCollapse )

Long-term list items (percent to go):

12. Origami Cranes (949/950 - 99.89%) (Barely scratched it. Still, still need a routine)
46. Pulp magazines (55/68 - 80.88%) (Here, however, fantastic progress. Almost double speed. Keeping it up!)
48. Misc Movie List (19/22 - 86.36%) (Surprising progress here as well. Be nice to finally get these done)
49. VHS (23/23 - 100%) (Nothing here; need to work on entry #69)
50. mp3s (260/264 - 98.48%) (Not great, but some. Need to do some more sweeps)
58. Sushi (64/65 - 98.46%) (Will probably fail this again, but any progress is delicious)
69. New DVD shelf (53/48 - 110.41%) (Aaaand I continue my grand tradition of making this one worse)
76. Emily's Movie List (82?) (Can't really count this yet, since I might still discard some possibilities)
86. Classic “Who” (570/578 - 98.61%) (Very small progress, but once I get past the reconstructions it should go faster)
96. Caching: MN Counties (35/35 - 100%) (Nothing lately, but we have some trips planned)
97. Caching: Wildflower Parks (78/78 - 100%) (Ditto above)
101. Caching: 14 Events (14/14 - 100%) (Should be scheduling one in the next week or so)

Man, a lot more list items than before. Lists within lists. At least some things are happening. And on we go.

Onward and upward.
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2016, and my remote hermitage [09 Jan 2016|06:56pm]
Another new year rolls in. I don't really do resolutions, but the one I'm committing to this year is to be less of a hermit, especially since it looks like I'll be moving next year. So if I'm gonna see these friends of mine, I have to do it now.

Most of my hermitting happens just because I'm an introvert, and between a full-time job and theater projects, I need to grab what time I can to recharge. But, like everything beneficial, I can go overboard with it, and just vanish into my cave unless I have no excuse to. So, that's my resolution- don't do that so much, man. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go shower and get ready for a party tonight. Woot woot.

The List, Day 77 (1/9); 2/101 DoneCollapse )
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Klingon, Goodbye, HCC, Fringe, and so on [07 Dec 2015|11:12pm]
I really need to get my website up and running. There's actually things happening now.

Klingon Christmas Carol is running again; opened last weekend, actually. I'm once more playing nephew Vred, and this time young SQuja as well. I missed last year, so I don't have an unbroken history, but it still feels like a return to normal. First time I've done this particular double-casting as well; it gives a nice opportunity to differentiate between the characters. Really do some ACTING, yeah? Audiences seem really receptive thus far, too, which is important and great.

That comes to an end before the end of December (of course), and then in January the next thing starts; The Goodbye Project with Upright Egg. The Egg hasn't done anything in several years now, and although it isn't official, this show feels like it will be our swan song. Time will tell, of course, but with a project exploring goodbyes it feels right to enter with that mindset.

I'm the official playwright for the Project, which in Egg terms means I'm about 60% scribe, 20% exercise creator, 10% original material, and 10% structure guide. I'm going to draft a few small pieces for this weekend's workshop, to give the performers something to work with, but no more than a few pages' worth. Then they'll make something lovely, I'll write it down, and feel like I'm taking credit. Vague guilt; the playwright's best friend! I don't know where this will go, but I'm excited for the journey. "How do you say goodbye, when it's the last thing you want to do." Already have a few directions that can go.

That will perform in March, which should give me a little time off before the next project: Human Combat Chess! I'll be commentating again (90% sure; I've been asked and accepted, but haven't gotten confirmation yet). Ironically (or at least notably), it's happening earlier this year, so I could probably audition for a fighting role without it interfering with Fringe. But I was asked to commentate before I sent an audition request, so I'm choosing to interpret that pricing myself out of range of fighting. I was just so good at talking they didn't need to see me with a sword in hand. Sure. Why not? Anyway, I enjoyed the hell out of it last time, and look forward to doing it again.

That performs into mid-May, which should give me time to fully gear up for Fringe in August. I've applied with Fringe Orphans again (number 4 in year 5, hopefully), and Tedious Brief has applied as well. TB had a meeting yesterday to suss out what exactly we'd like to do, and came up with a couple of ideas that struck us hard enough that we want to make them happen. We also had a few stupid ideas that might make for Fringe Orphans, so hey, bonus. Our top choice was an idea co-created with someone outside the company; we approached him about making it happen, and he seems excited about it. Dunno his level of involvement yet, but we're having a meeting/viewing party next Monday to move forward. Lotto isn't until February, so we have months until we know if it's actually happening (same with Orphans, of course).

Beyond Fringe... oh, who knows. I've got a lot of writing projects on burners; it's time to start giving them the energy they deserve. Writing for Goodbye will hopefully get me back in the habit, but I'll need to put the effort in. And, of course, I already have three out-of-state trips planning for 2016, with a fourth in my pipe dreams. But hey; I just passed the 10 year anniversary at work, which gives me another week of PTO. Gotta use that on SOMETHING, right?

The List, Day 44 (12/7); 1/101 DoneCollapse )
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HB 2015 [04 Nov 2015|01:03am]
Another Haunted Basement is done. I am still exhausted, incredibly sad that it's done, and coming down with the usual post-show-immune-system-gives-up illness.

This year was terrific. I mean, they all have been, otherwise I wouldn't keep coming back. But the social aspect of it really took off for me this year; when I'd arrive and pick what room I was to work that night, it was more about who I'd be working with than what I'd be doing. I got to pair up with some old friends who I'd never actually played with, and learned new games each and every night. I made up a song, took two rounds to refine it, then sang it to horrified patrons as I used their hands to stroke each other. I made grown men scream, grown women run, and hugged my friends doing the same. I got interviewed by a magazine, communed with a ghost, and taped a bloody tampon to a friend's face. I'm glad it's done- it wiped me out. I'm sorry it's done- I love those people, and spending time with them in any other way just isn't the same. Creep Prom is in a week and a half (note to self; find a dress), but as much as I'm looking forward to it, it won't be as good as the exhausted hanging out after the final show, sitting in the burned-out Christmas room and talking about sex lives, or lying in a pile on the green room floor, or standing on the porch watching people in bloody makeup shotgun Summits.

I figured something out this year. What makes the Creeps so special, as people, is that when we're down there, we're honest. We're pure, for the duration. Everyone is in touch with who they really are, and what they really want. I don't like everyone down there; in fact a couple of them I can't stand. But they're family, in a very real way. And I'll miss them, and I'm glad to get away.

So it always goes- I want everything. I want to spend every minute there. I want to escape and do something else. I want to live every life I can, and the one I've had so far is so damned wonderful sometimes that it hurts. How weird is it that a haunted house brings all this out?

The List, Day 11 (11/3); 0/101 DoneCollapse )
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Project Zero: Round Three [24 Oct 2015|03:49pm]
One. More. Time!

Filled out the blanks with new items; some ambitious, some modest. Time period starts October 25th 2015 and ends July 22nd 2018. Further elaboration upon request. Private goals are due to confidentiality agreements, embarrassing things, or master plans. I’ve also started tracking how many lists each goal has been on, to show how many years it’s been on my radar. And away we go.

Last edit: October 24th, 2015 (Day 0). New items: 0/41. 2-Listers: 0/32. All 3 Rounds: 0/28. Total: 0/101 done.

1. Fix Teeth (Remaining: 2-3 Fragment Extractions, 1-3 Implants)
2. MD Checkup
3. 10 Day Master Cleanse
4. Sleep Apnea Study
5. Visit Allergist

6. Cook 10 New Dishes (0/10)
7. Learn Welsh
8. *private*
9. Didgeridoo
10. Meditation class
11. Dance class
12. Fold 950 Origami Cranes (0/950)
13. *private*

14. Get brianwatsonjones.com up and running
15. See plays by 4 established Twin Cities companies that are new to me (0/4)
16. See 6 plays that don't have any friends involved with them (0/6)
17. Get an agent
18. Draft one-man show idea
19. Finish first draft of Tunesville
20. Write something for cracked.com
21. Buy season tickets for a theatre company; use them all (1/3) [Initial: Starting with one down, begun during the last list]
22. Get reviewed by name in a paper (in any capacity)
23. Develop Hallowe'en show
24. Get a play produced by submitting to an out-of-town contest
25. Write “Business People”
26. Draft “Rumors”
27. Redraft “Word Salad”

**Default World
28. New day job
29. Write Will
30. Pay off credit card [Initial: 50.82% of credit limit]
31. Help 5 friends move (0/5)
32. Clean Walls
33. Apt Nooks/Crannies
34. Seattle Move
35. FB Memorial Settings
36. Inbox Zero [Initial: 159 Emails, 56 Starred]
37. Clean Out Egg Archives
38. Clothes Purge
39. Cull Books
40. Full Car Fix
41. Computer Cleanup
42. Cull FB Friends

**Long Overdue
43. Empty "get-rid-of" tub
44. Beat "The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess"
45. Get a tattoo
46. Finish pulp magazines (68 to go)
47. Take an IQ test
48. Finish Misc Movie List (22 to go)

49. Phase out VHS (23 to go)
50. Legalize mp3s (264 to go)
51. Repair Pea Coat
52. Revamp Bike

**Fun (or, because I want to, and I can, which means I should)
53. Sky Dive
54. Visit L.A.
55. Absinthe party
56. Visit Russian Museum
57. "Ancestral" tartan
58. Eat sushi 65 times (0/65)
59. Revisit Burning Man
60. Attend an opera
61. Learn Greek letters
62. Learn NATO letter callsigns
63. Learn Cockney rhyming slang
64. Do a pub crawl
65. Restaurant: It's Greek to Me
66. Memorize The Raven
67. Go skiing
68. Celebrate Festivus
69. Empty new DVD shelf (48 to go)
70. *private*
71. Visit NYC
72. See Aurora Borealis
73. Visit Spam Museum
74. *private*
75. Get Asian wooden bell
76. Emily's Movie List (? to go)
77. Read Foundation Series
78. Complete TMBG Collection
79. Eat Camel
80. Eat a Bug
81. Do a Corn Maze
82. 10 Old Friend Dinners (0/10)
83. Hike a Mountain
84. See Sarah C
85. Read “Scary Stories To Tell In the Dark” in the dark
86. Watch all Classic “Who” (578 episodes, 8 Doctors to go)
87. Visit Virginia
88. Visit Boundary Waters
89. Get a Corgi
90. Tip 100%
91. Tip Mailman at Christmas

92. Cache in a new country
93. Achieve Earthcache Platinum status (3 to create; Silver level; Gold level)
94. Cache in a New State
95. Complete Jasmer Grid
96. Blackout MN Counties (0/35)
97. Blackout Wildflower Parks (0/78)
98. Project A.P.E.
99. 10 Icon Day
100. 400 Find Day
101. Host 14 Events (0/14)
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Project Zero 2.5: Trashing old goals [05 Oct 2015|06:57pm]
Okay, time to cull some goals that stopped mattering in the last couple of years.

what was cut, and whyCollapse )

...huh. Thought it'd be more. Well, five cut out, 36 completed, leaves me with 41 replacements to think up. Have probably a quarter in mind already, now to put them down on paper. Onward and upward, with a bit of weight shed away.
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Project Zero Two: Conclusion [05 Oct 2015|01:18am]
Another 1001 days pass. As a yardstick of my life, I've measured out two project zero lists, for over 6 years; nearly a fifth of the time I've existed. Which is... man, weird as hell. Anyway, how'd this one go?

Decent. Knocked out a little more than a third, didn't clear my big backed-up-reading goal, and a lot of important things went untouched. But a lot of other, difficult entries were cleared so long ago that I forgot that they weren't on the previous list. I'll make a third, no question, and start it as soon as it's written. Whether I get any better with time management is... unlikely. I think I'll also look at the goals that I dropped, uncompleted, from the first list and from this one, and give a think about what it means that I no longer cared to attempt them. But that's for the future. First, a look at what is ending.

Updates since last postCollapse )

Long-term goals.

Read more...Collapse )

And the final count.

Project Zero 2- 36/101Collapse )

Completed since last checkinCollapse )

So there we are. I didn't clear as much of the list as I did of the first one, but I was more ambitious with the items on it. Not sure if that counts enough to wash it out. Now, I just have to cull my old list of items that I don't care about any longer, replace completed and discarded entries with new ones, call that the 3rd list, and start it up. Onward and upward.
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Western loop 2015 [31 Aug 2015|07:20am]
So! Emily and I just got back from a two week road trip. How'd that go?

Fantastic. And a few train-wreck moments, and near-train-wreck moments, but boiled down to its core, it went fantastic.

Geocaching: I haven't finished logging yet, but we found over 150, including the Block Party and APE Mega event. Failed on the 10 icon day attempt. We each logged in five new states, although not the same ones. Uncounted new counties, but we almost drew a line from Seattle back home. At least a half-dozen challenges completed, a couple dozen virtuals, 4 webcams... lots of little things that would mean a lot if a single person reading this knew what the hell it means.

National Parks: First off, I screwed up big time, and left my passport at home. So we didn't route thru Canada on the way back as intended, and so missed Banff. Because I am an idiot. So our route consisted of Dinosaur National Monument, the Cascades (our re-route instead of Canada), Glacier National Park, and a drive thru Teddy Roosevelt National Park. Dinosaur was awesome; the Quarry wall of fossils, a nice campground, and a box canyon all to ourselves. The Cascades were quick, but lovely. Glacier we stayed at for several days; a drive along the Sun Road, a whitewater rafting trip, a hike up to Grinnell Glacier, camping in the rain, a night at the Lodge, and a couple of good steaks, one made of bison. TR was really lovely, but I was antsy to get home by then, so the time spent felt too long. We'll have to go back to that one.

Miscellaneous: We did a whale-watching tour north of Seattle, and had an A+ day. A minkie, two humpbacks, and a whole pod's worth of orcas. Two half-pods, really, since they were identified from both J and K pod. We had a couple of near-fights that turned into processes, as our fights tend to do, and came out the stronger for it. We drove through quite a lot of brushfire smoke; I hadn't expected to be affected that much. But Glacier was shrouded in smoke for most of our stay (the rain cleared it up in time for the Grinnell hike), and we had a brief moment of panic when 187 miles of I-84 were closed in Oregon before we got there. It was reopened by the time we arrived the next day, but we still worked out a couple of alternate routes. And, uh, I agreed to move to Seattle. So that'll probably happen in a couple of years. I haven't told FB yet, since it's way too early for that, so consider this an exclusive.

So, yes. A few bumps the road (my passport, a few near-fights, one big caching goal unclaimed, a few near-misses where we arrived *just* in time for something), but overall, this trip was fantastic. I'm almost done unpacking, not nearly done logging caches. And well back in the real world. Stupid employment.

Otherwise, one Halloween project was destroyed by its own company (I wasn't deeply involved, but deeply enough to watch the drama unfold), and I've accepted a role as a Core Actor for the Haunted Basement again this year. We had our first meeting yesterday, and a tour of the build in progress, and yeah. I am excited for this, still. Can't wait for that bit of the future to begin.

The List, Day 971 (8/30); 36/101 DoneCollapse )
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CONvergence, onstage and backstage [13 Jul 2015|09:51pm]
So! Human Combat Chess opened, then closed. Good stuff in between; I think I did some really good work, got consistently positive feedback from cast, crew, and audience. Made some friends, got more practice on my "improvising from a basic script" skills (LEVEL UP!), and a good-sized chunk of Emily's family went to see it, so there's that. Oh, and an old friend from college showed up completely unexpectedly: he was in town for the evening on a flight layover, recalled I'd posted on FB about the show, attended, and nabbed me afterwards. Totally shocked me, too- I absolutely didn't recognize him for the longest time, probably due to the wildly different context. We ended up hanging out at a bar and shooting the breeze about London and mutual friends for hours. It was awesome, but in a way made me feel older. I've never gone to a class reunion, but that had to be what it feels like. Pure, uncut nostalgia. Still, great. And a great run overall for the show.

Then! CONvergence! CON is a local... con. Convention. It's the biggest one of the year in this area; not a specific genre of convention like Comic-Con or an anime one or PAX; it's a generalized nerd convention, focused more on costumes than anything. Transvestite Soup ran a party room there last year, and we did the same again this year. Plus, we performed on the mainstage Thursday night.

Great performance. GREAT performance. We rocked it, the audience loved it, our logo was on the podium, we were broadcast throughout the hotel on the internal station... that was one of our best shows ever. I'm incredibly proud of my cast, and thankful for the opportunity, and glad to have done it.

The party room? Also rocked. I worked the bar for a good deal of it, and there was a hugely positive reaction to the drink options. The decorations were gorgeous, great response from all who visited, and the tip jars were well-filled each night. And, though we didn't run out of condoms and dental dams, we sure came close. I think we ran out of some of the non-latex options, but that was due to someone who stopped by during the first night and took a whole fistful. Hopefully they needed 'em, who knows. Overall, great room.

But! And there's always a but. There was some HUGE backstage drama this year. I only know about it secondhand, but I got some pretty extensive information anyway. I don't want to go into it here, and let's face it, if you really care you already know it. In short, a friend got fired. No good reason has been given. Lots of bad reasons have been hinted at or theorized. This friend has many powerful friends. Something big could topple from this, or it could be a huge behind-the-scenes brouhaha with little-to-no lasting effect. Time will tell.

I'd love to return to CON, as a member of Transvestite Soup and/or a patron. But we'll have to see how this all shakes out.

The List, Day 923 (7/13); 34/101 DoneCollapse )
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Project Zero Two (The Reckoning): Day 900 Checkin [21 Jun 2015|02:43am]
Down to the wire, into the last 100 day round. Made a bit of progress this time, but still nowhere near a finished list. The next few months will be busy; Fringe, a cross-country road trip with Emily, but a few of my items are tipping right on the edge of completion, and I want to clear out a couple of the big ones this summer. So we'll see, as always. For now, how were the last hundred days?

Updates since last postCollapse )

As it stands, Day 900 (6/20); 33/101 DoneCollapse )

Completed GoalsCollapse )

Long-term list items (percent to go):

19. Origami Cranes (50/1000 - 95.0%) (Again, not a one. Just fell out of the habit. Unlikely to do 5 a day for the next three months, but who knows?)
44. Pulp magazines (78/212 - 36.79%) (Again, not a full 10%. Since, at this point, I'd basically have to complete 3 every 4 days to finish off, I feel safe saying this won't happen. But I should be able to get it below a third of the original level)
48. VHS (23/48 - 47.91%) (Still no change. This might need to be the special focus of this period)
49. mp3s (265/300 - 88.33%) (Deleted a bunch of useless, borderline-legal music, but none of the ones that are relevant to this)
65. Sushi (68/79 - 86.07%) (Not this round. Got a plan for a date night, though)
82. New DVD shelf (45/41 - 109.75%) (Well, some progress. Maybe THIS should be the special focus)

Down to the wire, now. Time to prioritize, focus, and knock out the entries that I really want gone before the final summation. Or time to get distracted again and only do some incidental work. Time alone will tell!

Onward and upward.
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A life that's hard to explain [07 Jun 2015|02:16am]
That's my new mantra. Well, I've used it two or three times now, so it's closer to a running gag. I'm living a life that's hard to explain. It came about because of how busy next Saturday is:

First off, help a friend move (leave her husband, with her kid, so, y'know... oy)
If time, attend a geocaching event that involves renting a kayak on Lake Calhoun
If time, act as an extra in another friend's movie, where they need a couple hundred people to be eaten by a giant monster
Then, the first open invite Haunted Basement idea jam session
Finally, color commentary for a Human Combat Chess match.

So, yeah. Tough to explain most of those. I'll probably only have time for three, but even then, busy day.

Oh, and the Human Combat Chess thing is ongoing, as it's my next show. So I found something to fill the void left by Crime & Punishment, and it's talking about how versatile a weapon the small sword is (very). Plus feelers out to a couple other projects, in a more writing/creating capacity. The road goes ever on.

The List, Day 886 (6/6); 32/101 DoneCollapse )
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Post-show depression [08 May 2015|05:32pm]
Crime & Punishment is closed. In the next few days, the set will be demolished. It's already fairly cleaned out; I walked through it the other night, probably the only one in the building, and said my quiet goodbyes. This production was a remount of last year's Fringe show, but it's unlikely to receive a third remount in the future. So, in an important way, the show is gone forever.

I mean, that's true of all shows. They're ephemeral; that's the main thing that keeps theater relevant even after a half-dozen spectacular inventions in the field of entertainment and information dissemination. Movies, TV, Radio, uh, the printed word. If we have the money and the time, we can do literally millions of things other than go to a play. But live shows HAPPEN, whereas movies and such EXIST. Same reason people go to concerts rather than listen to music at home for much less cost and hassle. But when the action is happening in front of you, done in person and in that moment, it gains an immediacy and importance that you lose if it's something you can pause to make a sandwich. Every live theater piece I've had has become a memory the moment it closed, never to be revisited as it was, whether it's Crime & Punishment or A Midsummer Night's Dream.

But A Midsummer Night's Dream can happen again. Different cast, different circumstances, different performance space and different me performing, but the base script itself can happen again. Company-created shows can't, not really. The Upright Egg Projects, Valhalla, C&P, were made and stamped by the people who were there, both onstage and off. The scripts still exist and can be done again, theoretically. But not really. They'd become new scripts, by virtue of the voices used to express them.

But Crime & Punishment was something new for me. I had lunch with a friend during rehearsals, and he asked if I'd ever done something with this sort of immersive environment before. I honestly had to reflect. Because although it feels like I have, I haven't, not really. I mean, every Haunted Basement has elements similar to it: direct interaction with audience, immediate adjustments to performance based on who's in the room and the attitude they're bringing. But HB isn't really a show; it's a world, a mood, an environment in a pure sense. It's pure attitude, not attitude in aid of another goal. And I've done company-created work before, plenty of it. But even when it contained serious moments of breaking the 4th wall, that 4th wall was THERE. It has to exist to be broken. C&P didn't have it to start. Everyone was in the world, as present and involved as they allowed themselves to be. We made the world, we shaped it, and they had to navigate it. It was visceral and wonderful in ways I didn't expect.

And it wasn't diminished by the fact that I was barely there. I was present at all performances, but for the majority of them I was on the phone, calling in, having audio interactions with maybe a dozen or so patrons out of as many as 80. I'd be seen midshow by 3 or 4, who came back into the Tea Room or who I went out to nab. And everyone saw me as the show began, when I gave them part of the curtain speech as they were led in, and most saw me after, offering food and business cards on a tray to the exit line. But I wasn't there for the scenes, not really. Even the few shows where I was switched to a $100 man due to audience needs, I was a sherpa, a guide, not a participant. But I still felt like one, felt like a vital part of the world, even from my entirely supplemental role. A tribute to the quality of the production, or my professionalism, or my arrogance. The cast had a rapport, and that's broken, and I'll miss it.

I'll miss this show, and I'll miss these people, as we were. But as with every graduation, all I can do is mourn the loss and move on to what's new.

The List, Day 857 (5/8); 32/101 DoneCollapse )
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Crime & Punishment [11 Apr 2015|05:43pm]
Been a busy month. I had a couple of auditions last month; after updating my audition record, I realized that I hadn't actually needed to try out for anything since late 2013, which is fairly trippy. I'm not as active as I used to be, plus a lot of things I do now and instances where I'm just asked to be involved, or I'm running the show myself. Either way, no audition.

Then I had two in a week. Brushed off my monologues, did pretty good at one and killed at the other, got cast in the first and called back for the second. Didn't get the second (alas; it was one I'd been coveting for a year), but callbacks for that director actually mean something, so it's a partial victory. The first, which I got, was Crime & Punishment with Live Action Set, a company I've wanted to work with for a long time. I had one foot in the door already, since they ran the Haunted Basement last year, and the director ran the HB the year before as an individual. So they know me, and what I'm good for, and found a place they wanted me.

And, after a shockingly short rehearsal period, we opened yesterday. It's a great show, a real experience inside and out, but it's really hard for me to get a read on it. It's an audience-immersive show, where the storylines and performances happen in a large environment, and the patrons wander at will from one space to another, seeing what they find with minimal guidance. So the show you see is entirely a matter of your choices and chance. My role, without getting spoilery, is removed from the rest in a unique way, allowing me to interact with the audience in a way that's simultaneously more direct and more remote. It's been an interesting challenge, and I was left on my own to create a great deal of my lines. Which, of course, appealed to my writer side, and I'm really proud of some of the stuff I created. But the way my role happens, combined with the fact that all the audience members are in masks, leaves it hard for me to get that immediate response feel that I love in working the Haunted Basement. I can't tell if what I'm doing is effective, affective, contributing to the world or distracting from it. I've had a few really great moments in our previews and the two shows last night, but as a whole I'm just doing my thing and trusting that, if it isn't working, someone in charge will stop me. It's frustrating, and fantastic, and unusual. I'm glad I'm doing it, and I'll be refining and adjusting right up until the last minute of the final show. And, considering that this production is a remount of a 2014 Fringe show, possibly beyond the final show into whatever's next.

In the meantime, good times with a great cast. And a couple of really good parties. There's worse things, for certain.

The List, Day 830 (4/11); 32/101 DoneCollapse )
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Project Zero Two (The Reckoning): Day 800 Checkin [13 Mar 2015|01:45am]
Another update without any new goals cleared. I'm at a transitional point in my River right now; I've been a hermit, partly due to winter, partly due to temperament. But I just got cast in a show that starts rehearsal Monday, and I have an audition Saturday for a show that I really, REALLY want, and would start rehearsal just as this new one ends. So I'm going to be forced out into the world, to interact with people and learn lines and stuff. Should be good for me, because I've been feeding my introvert side far too much lately, and because nothing makes you feel like getting things done quite like getting things done. We'll see if it has an effect on this List nonsense.

Updates since last postCollapse )

As it stands, Day 700 (12/2); 30/101 DoneCollapse )

Completed GoalsCollapse )

Long-term list items (percent to go):

19. Origami Cranes (50/1000 - 95.0%) (Closest I got to origami this period was a brief B-story in the first season of House of Cards)
44. Pulp magazines (91/212 - 42.92%) (I've basically accepted that I won't finish this by day 1001. But I'm enjoying them, mostly, and I'm putting myself in a really good place to wipe 'em out in the next List)
48. VHS (23/48 - 47.91%) (Huh. Thought I got at least one. Well, I have most of the replacements ready to go, anyway)
49. mp3s (265/300 - 88.33%) (Another non-progress round. Cleared out a lot of podcasts and old-time radio, though)
65. Sushi (68/79 - 86.07%) (Eh, anything is good sometimes)
82. New DVD shelf (47/41 - 114.63%) (Another round where my purchases exactly matched my progress)

We'll see if this newly-active feeling helps clear out a few more entries, or if losing the free time balances it out.

Onward and upward.
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Valentine's! Scotch! 6 weeks' silence? [15 Feb 2015|03:58am]
I always viewed Valentine's Day as a good excuse for a date. I mean, unless I was two weeks into dating someone, in which case it was a chance to PANIC HOW IMPORTANT IS THIS WHAT ARE WE CALLING IT AHHHH, but usually just an excuse.

Emily and I had our excuse-date last night, since she was working tonight. I got her a feather-flower and we went out to a steakhouse for a fancy dinner. Really good, too; terrific steak, a really complex soup, great service. But honestly, nothing huge. We basically agreed that next year we'll do the same, but mid-week on not-VD so that the crowds weren't as bad. We didn't do anything big and special, but we didn't feel the need; we're pretty affectionate when we're actually around each other (work schedule conflict lead to us being barely roommates a couple days a week), so it's not like we had to remind ourselves we were dating or anything.

One concrete thing that last night led to: I'm gonna get a scotch app for my phone, so that I remember the names when I try something at a restaurant. I got an ounce of Lagavullin 16 year; really firey and strong, but not my style. It was as strong as Laphroig, but not as complex. Just very one note. I prefer milder, smoother. And I really need a phone app to remind me, so that if I'm at another establishment picking a scotch, I can bring up a reference to what I've had before. So, off to the app store I go.


Found one. Not ideal (only lets you save five varieties without paying), but the interface has all I think I want. If it works well, I'll pay the $3 for unlimited entries. Man, I am way more stingy with $3 for apps than I am for $21 for scotch.

I haven't felt the drive to update lately, but figured 6 weeks was long enough. So here's an entry. Geocaching remains ridiculous (today marked day 365 of a streak, woo), writing remains absent (though the play currently in my head is bubbling over, so I have to make time soon to put some of it down). Fringe lotto in just over a week; Orphans is in again, as is Tedious Brief. Now, I'm off to watch old Doctor Who and try to be productive, maybe pay some bills.

The List, Day 774 (2/14); 30/101 DoneCollapse )
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Project Zero Two (The Reckoning): Day 700 Checkin [03 Dec 2014|10:32pm]
Man, I don't even know what kept me so busy this period. I mean, yeah, Haunted Basement, but that's been over for a month and I've only made progress on the long-term goals. My brain is just full.

Updates since last postCollapse )

As it stands, Day 700 (12/2); 30/101 DoneCollapse )

Completed GoalsCollapse )

Long-term list items (percent to go):

19. Origami Cranes (50/1000 - 95.0%) (Still nothing. Serenity and meditation are hard to create)
44. Pulp magazines (103/212 - 48.58%) (Not enough, not by far. But a few down, a few down)
48. VHS (23/48 - 47.91%) (Nope, nothing here either)
49. mp3s (265/300 - 88.33%) (Didn't even try)
65. Sushi (69/79 - 87.34%) (More than usual. Not nearly enough for the average, but any delicious sushi is delicious)
82. New DVD shelf (47/41 - 114.63%) (Dead even; got one and finished it)

I don't know what else to say. I'm wiped out, despite not having a show right now. I guess a full-time job, geocaching streak, recently moved-in girlfriend, and adorable cat are enough to take up my time now. It's hell getting old.

Onward and upward.
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