Storypost | 2008.11.24

I cleared out the car hold on Sunday thanks to the garage-media room proximity. I was able to relocate all of the tools to the adjacent storage room, though they've been in disarray since being displaced from the upstairs bedroom.

Now there's room for a work bench, should that be a pressing need when the indentured serv- family comes down for turkey and A Colbert Christmas.

And perhaps I'll I find myself in an industrious mood wherein the garage is a fine test spot for concrete polishing (Jay's garage, above). On the subject, a good amount of dust has accrued in the media room - and it's not like I've been sloppy down there; the couch, et al, are still pristine. Concrete's a quick clean, not so for carpet.

I think the shiny, minimalist garage will be a boon for the eventual sales process. Most of the houses I looked at months ago used the garage as storage locker, dog house, evil dungeon, or all of the above.

There's shelving to be done. First, a few for helmets and such to be located where my riding and surfing gear hangs. Next, some small ones for the sound system rescued from Casa Morelos. Apparently the thing only likes me- it would continually overheat and shut down for my old roomies and did the same for Rob when he tried it recently. Last night it worked seamlessly with my mp3 player.

The next step is to move the extra tv down there since garage activities mesh well with American sports. Then hook the ol' laptop up to the tv and audio system for access to Pandora and internet accessibility.

Drivers domain house architecture Alfa

Now, Alfa owner I am not (yet). Nor do I wish to act the Ferrari owner. But how awesome is the above dude's place? I think I read somewhere it's an architecture piece called Driver's Domain or something like that.

I'm a fan of lighting- flashes for photography, fluorescents for wrenching, and accents for everything in between. So I'd like to install some red, recessed led bulbs on a motion sensor. Red because it's close to safe light color, leds because they're instant-on and I could leave them going overnight and use less power than thirty minutes of tv. And it'd go nicely with a chair out front and some sort of beverage. My block isn't quite as interesting as the Adams-Morgan strip where I learned to love the practice, but excellent nonetheless.

So, those vents on the side of the garage. Are those for thermal equalization or what? Cause honestly I'd much prefer to close them up and stem the flow of moisture to my sensitive metal products within.

I'm still unsure how to execute on the storage room. It's a convenient way to access much of the house, so I'd like to keep it uncluttered. It's an accessible but unseen storage spot for garage materials and that will be its primary purpose. The room is also ideal for wine, perhaps the northernmost section could be outfitted with a rack. And there's the choice of ground cover for the exposed hillside.

I found some black crg levers on the Pro Italia site, so on Saturday I stopped by the Glendale store - yeah, the one from Entourage.

Good spot. I've never had any serious complaints about GP or Forza, but the shop is certainly much friendlier than their southern equivalents. They even knew Chris from Ca.

Barring any bad scoring corrections, looks like I have a shot at the Medieval Gridiron playoffs.

The Raiders game was a breath of fresh air. The recipe for success was a pretty obvious causation: half of Denver's defense was on the bench -> the Oakland offense could be somewhat effective -> the Oakland defense was not stuck on the field for fifty minutes -> there was no fourth quarter defensive collapse.

Rob Ryan is brilliant. I didn't need a victory to say so, this is just the first Monday I've actually wanted to think about football. Oakland has put up some fantastic challenges (remember how they dominated SD through three quarters) but the d would always falter having been saddled with spending the most time on the field and putting points on the board.

Russell and McFadden may be developing, the only thing to say for sure is that they need time on the field. Fargas is solid.

Cutler had a less-than-stellar day. Perhaps Shanahan trusted his second string defense a bit too much against an ineffective Oakland attack. Against any other team he may have tried making the game a shootout a la the Browns. The Raider secondary is good, but Cutler had a solid pocket all game and with receivers like Marshall and Royal, it's surprising he only completed 43% of his passes.

And then there's the absence of Jason Elam...

Storypost | 2008.11.21

Master bedroom.

Upstairs south bedroom.

Review | 2008.11.21

Ty and I just finished Gears 2 with some help from Kevin. It was a two-sitting playthough thanks to a midweek cold.

As expected, the game mechanics are pretty much the same as the first, the graphics have improved, and Epic has added a few more toys. Some of the levels are visually and aesthetically quite impressive. The level design hasn't changed, it's linear except each area has a few dead end branches to make you waste time scouring them, or wonder if you missed something important.

The ai is coming along nicely, and that adds intrigue to what might otherwise be a shoot-duck-shoot adventure. On the subject of switching up the trench/barrier gunfight formula, Gears does something well. The go-to methods for preventing players from camping are to surround and/or charge. It's a crutch for adding difficulty when your pretty graphics don't let you send endless hordes.

The baddies in Gears do sometimes charge, and often flank - which is much different from having them pour in from every direction. This game presents a number of scenarios where the cover moves or disappears. The ars reviewer was all hyphy about this. It's okay but I'm glad they didn't overuse it.

What's really cool is the introduction of mortars. Fearing the vertical element you can still snipe, but not with complacency. It creates a distinct disincentive to be co-located with your buddy. There's just a whole new dimension when you can be surrounded by cover, but not safe. And it works the other way when you pick up a mortar tube.

Let's see... Epic realized that if there's going to be a trilogy, they need a story so that's been added (ahem, Halo). The in-game dialog is good and sometimes humorous (Marcus = Bender), the cutscene scripts are horrendous.
Great fun and a fantastic application of the media room.

Storypost | 2008.11.09

I furnished the media room with some proper couches. They're just one palette up at the moment, but it's great for running audio wiring.

That displaced the futon which is now furnishing the kitchen area.

And I furnished the living room with a sofa. Pretty good Vets' day deals, especially on this one.

And I furnished Jon an xr400. Much thanks to Ted for the leg work, and Christine for the bow.
And Jon furnished me a fantasy football victory.

Storypost | 2008.11.01

I read that the next Watchmen trailer can be seen at Quantum of Solace. Opening for Batman and James Bond, not too shabby. I was blown away by the first peek, and then slightly anxious when I read that Alan Moore didn't want any credit or money from the project. Further investigation (wiki) is more reassuring; apparently Moore hated the first screenplay written twenty years ago and then declared that the medium was not appropriate for his story. Cut and dried, his point is that only with comic books (/graphic novels) can the audience deliberate on the intricacies of each frame and reference previous moments with ease.

Well the film was made. With any luck the final adaptation resembles the second script, written by Solid Snake, which was regarded by Moore to be as close to 'filmable' as Watchmen can be.

Without a doubt Watchmen is very subtle and detailed in its dialog and imagery. The theatrical experience will be a much different one, perhaps replacing the brooding feeling with greater tension.

I cleared out the media room some. At center is the mst3k 20th anniversary box set.

I put the upstairs bathroom vanity in tonight. The granite top was a bit weighty, but I managed to not ding anything.

The shower was finished a little while ago. It's nice.