Wearable Art Juneau 2013

Wearable Art 2013My wife and her endless creativity has brought her back to Juneau’s Arts and Humanities Council and their annual ‘Wearable Art‘ event. Hannah spent months designing her entry. Starting with sketches on paper, she has designed her dress entry this year out of sterile instrument wraps and used laser printer film. The dress was worn by her model, Amber.

Last weekend was the two day event. It was a lot of fun and had some nice changes from last year’s event.

[youtube www.youtube.com/watch?v=QXu8PK3ZQ9U]


The Juneau summer this year was not the warmest or the sunniest I have ever experienced since moving to Alaska. They all can’t be winners when you live in the middle of a rain forest.

As fall hits us with a shock the weather has turned cold and the air has become very dry. At the start of October people have had to start waking up earlier than normal to make sure their cars are defrosted and warmed up for the morning drive into work. Before the month was out we got our first real snow fall that dusted the landscape like sugar.

With all the recent cold weather, and the daily continuing loss of sunlight that comes with living this far north, we have had some bright spots too. Most notably is that during the daylight hours we do have they have been bright and sunny. Hannah and I have managed to go for some walks after work all bundled up and trying to soak up some of that natural vitamin D from the sun. We are lucky enough to live really close to a park with a lake, so its easy for us to walk out our front door and down to the lake where we walk the length of it and back.

October is also the month I was born in and Hannah put together a nice little party with some good friends. Some of which flew all the way in from southern Washington State. It turned out to be a great weekend that I don’t think I am going to ever forget.

Halloween is also in October, so of course we carved out some pumpkins and turned them into some great looking Jack-o-lanterns. My brother Abe came over and the three of us took to work on four pumpkins. This is the second or third time since I have lived up here that I recall it snowing when we set our Jack-o-lanterns outside.

PAX Prime 2012 Review

I came back from Penny Arcade Expo (PAX) on Monday and I thought I would give a little writeup on how it went.

At PAX you are surrounded by thousands and thousands of gamers. Computer gamers, console gamers, card gamers, role playing gamers, dice gamers and so on. It really does not matter what kind of a gamer you are. You could even just be the casual gamer and still find a place at this convention. You can easily talk to anyone at PAX about any aspect of gaming you want too. It’s such a friendly and fun atmosphere. This is why I have gone for the last three years.

While at the convention I picked up the following items.

Hannah wearing a ‘Cards Against Humanity’ T-Shirt. She found to answer t-shirts to go with hers.

Cards Against Humanity which is an adult card game much like Apples to Apples. Just for adults. The tag line is “A Card Game For Horrible People”. So many people were playing this all throughout PAX and laughing hard while playing it that I had to pick up my own copy of the game. Cards Against Humanity started off as a free game and still is free. You can download the free PDF and print off your own cards. After a while they started a Kickstarter project to have official cards made. Now you can buy your own like I did thanks to the people who helped fund their kickstarter project.

Smallworld – Be Not Afraid… Expansion. Smallworld is a great board game I have been playing with friends for a while now. I was stoked to find this expansion for the game and can’t wait to play a game using it.

Pathfinder: Ultimate Equipment is a new Pathfinder Roleplaying Game book with all kinds of Weapons, magic items, armor and much more. This is going to be such a useful tool for me when planning out adventures in my own Pathfinder game.

I was disappointed that TECMO/Team Ninja’s Dead or Alive 5 did not have a booth. This is one of my all time favorite video games and I have been looking forward to part fives release for over a year now. The last edition of the game was not available for the PS3. This version is and I am stoked to get back into it.

I was pretty impressed with Nintendo’s Wii U showing on the convention floor. The graphics are way improved and the controls were pretty neat. Now they just need games that support the new hardware in unique ways.

PAX rocks and I am looking forward to next year.


Ever since the Curiosity rover left our planet last November on it’s mission to Mars, I have been waiting with much anticipation for it’s landing on the red planet. Last Sunday the wait ended with the Curiosity rover’s landing on Mars. From what I have been reading and watching on the internet It appears the landing went off with out a hitch.

Hannah and I stayed up late on Sunday night to watch the NASA USTREAM of the landing. Here is a recap of the broadcast.

The landing on Mars was an amazing event to watch and I feel lucky that Hannah and I got to watch it together. After things calmed down, I could not help but noticed the abundance of Apple MacBook Pros everyone was using at NASA. Which lead me to post the following on Google+.

And then I created a meme from the post.

Since that Sunday we have had some more photos from Mars that are quite stunning. Its amazing what we can accomplished as a people when we work together for a common goal.

Over Reactions

Youseph's Head In a JarRelationships have always fascinated me. Why do some couples always fight about every-little-thing while others seems to have a very good understanding of one another? What keeps one couple from flying off the handle when hearing bad news while another couple is ready to rip each other apart?

Part of the answer to this, I think, is that we live in a world where everyone wants to talk and no one wants to listen. Everyone is trying to get their two cents in at exactly same time as everyone else. Which brings up a very interesting point. The world likes listeners.

Maybe it’s because in this highly addictive world of Twittering, facebooking, Google Plusing, and blogging everything that happens to you, we have forgotten how to listen to and console each other. Just by listening to what someone has to stay you are gaining that person’s trust and friendship. This puts you, the listener, is a position of importance to the people who are talking to you.

So, why do some couples in a relationship struggle and fight with each other while others, seemingly fewer, thrive and communicate better? I believe a majority of the blame for this kind of behavior can be placed on the media. Movies that are romantic comedies, books that are about love and life. These forms of entertainment have to have some kind of conflict built into them otherwise the movie or book would not be very long at all. Movie studios and book publishing companies would collapse and life as we know it would come to an end.

Have you ever watched a movie where the two main characters, who are in love with each other, over react to a situation or do something completely stupid that jeopardise their relationship? When that happens do you ever think to yourself; That is not how I would have handled that at all? I hate when that happens in a movie or a book. Nothing pulls me out of story more then when the characters do something so out of character. I think it is this kind of media. This kind of over reaction that happens in movies and books that affects us as a society and bleeds into our everyday lives causing us, a generally understanding and calm people, to overreact when similar issues arise in our private lives.

So how do we become an understanding and caring people again? How do we not fly off the handle the next time someone close to us tells us some bad news? I think the answer goes back to what I said earlier about listening. Listening is the key.

You have to teach yourself to listen. You can do this in small steps too. Lets say that tomorrow when you go out to lunch with your friends you are going just listen to what they say. How their day is going? How’s their job treating them? How’s the wife and kids? Whatever they want to talk about, go with them. Let them guide the conversation. If there is a lull in the conversation ask them questions based on what they have been talking about. But do try this selfless act. You’re going to learn a lot about your friends and what they go through. Who knows? You might even have some insight for them that would improve their life greatly. But the key here is to learn to listen and to ask questions that keeps your friends engaged. In their eyes you are going to become a very important and understanding person.

Next, how do you not overreact when you are in a relationship and your partner just gave you some disturbing news? Well, I think what you have to do is breath and listen to all that they have to say. Take in everything. Your partner is, in a way, exposed at this point so any lashed out retort on your part is going to only make the situation worse. I think the key here is take it all in. Don’t be like the characters in a movie or a book. Take in the information you are being told and process it. This may mean taking a day or more to yourself to do that. But do it so that when you do replay you are a rational and calm human being about it.

Look, I don’t claim to be a psychologist or to understand human behaviors or reaction. This post is a result of my own personal fascination of relationships and my observations of the world around which I live.