Aleut Story Report

For my Anthropology 200 Natives of Alaska class I had to watch a film called Aleut Island and write a short report about it.

The film talks about the US using the Aleuts as slave labor and decimating them in internment camps during WWII. You know, normal stuff.

Here’s a link to a PDF copy of the report if you’d like to read it.

Aleut Story Report

Miscellaneous Personal

July 2015 Reading List

These are the books I finished reading in July, 2015. Honestly, I think there might have been one or two more, but I was trying to cut back on my reading to work on a new game and didn’t write everything down as soon as I finished reading it.

  • Dragon City by Robin Hobb
  • Dragon Blood by Robin Hobb
  • Girl Jacked by Christopher Greyson
  • Impulse by Steven Gould
  • Exo by Steven Gould
  • Ship of Magic by Robin Hobb
Miscellaneous Personal

June 2015 Reading List

I finished reading the following books in June, 2015. After rediscovering Wilbur Smith last month I followed up with a few more. I also found out how easy it is to order books from the UofA library system (from all over the state) and have them delivered to MatSu College (7 minutes from the house) so I started in on a couple trilogies from Robin Hobb that I’d been wanting to buy.

  • Monsoon by Wilbur Smith
  • Angel Killer by Andrew Mayne
  • Suspect by Robert Craise
  • Desert God by Wilbur Smith
  • Swallow the Sky: A Space Opera by Chris Mead
  • Gone Forever by Scott Blade
  • Blue Horizon by Wilbur Smith
  • Timebound (Chronos Files #1) by Rysa Walker
  • The Triumph of the Sun by Wilbur Smith
  • Once A Thief by Kay Hooper
  • Dragon Keeper by Robin Hobb
  • Dragon Haven by Robin Hobb
  • Always A Thief by Kay Hooper

The July list (coming soon) is much shorter — mainly because I felt guilty about reading so many books and treating the time between semesters as a vacation!

Game Development

The Great Wordini

A few weeks ago I thought I needed to work on a game using Unity so I’d get up to speed faster and came up with an idea I hadn’t seen before — an endless runner crossed with a word game.

While the gameplay has changed a bit since that first idea, Wordini (working title) still has that theme — make words from a rack of letter tiles, which create platforms for the runner guy to jump on. Get him across the screen and you’ve finished one level!


You can keep up with the development using that link above (as soon as it’s been approved on IndieDB). Since the game is not complex, it will quickly be ripped off, but working in a vacuum sucks, so I’ll chance it.

Miscellaneous Personal

May 2015 Reading List

I finished reading the following books in May, 2015. School was over by the first couple days of the month and I think I went on kind of a reading binge to celebrate.

The Hard Luck Hank books were a fun(ny) sci-fi series and Birds of Prey reminded me why everybody in my family inhaled Wilbur Smith books as we were growing up.

  • Angles of Attack (Frontlines #3) by Markos Kloos
  • Close Up Magic (Sleight of Hand 1) by Michelle Flye
  • Escape Magic (Sleight of Hand 2) by Michelle Flye
  • Island Magic (Sleight of Hand 3) by Michelle Flye
  • Hard Luck Hank: Screw the Galaxy by Steven Campbell
  • Hard Luck Hank: Basketful of Crap by Steven Campbell
  • Hard Luck Hank: Prince of Suck by Steven Campbell
  • Dead Zero by Stephen Hunter
  • Crash & Burn by Lisa Gardner
  • Soft Target by Stephen Hunter
  • Birds of Prey by Wilbur Smith
  • SOS at Midnight by Walker Tompkins
Magic Performing

Still Not Performing *sigh*

For some reason, time has NOT stood still the way it ought, and here we are five years after that “This time I mean it!” post.

And no, I still haven’t done any performing. I *have* made notes on possible stuff to do, but if that’s all I have to show for five years, something’s wrong. I hate to say it, but I think the problem is mostly just inertia. It takes a lot of oomph to completely switch gears this late in life. And a decent chunk of money, too, since getting enough paying gigs right off the bat is hard/impossible.

I guess a person could just do it on the side — but I’ve never been good at that. I tend to dive head first into the things I want to do. And mostly it’s worked out, so that should give me the “permission” I need to dive back into the pool. But that thought is scary. And, I do like what I’m doing now and don’t want to just toss it by the wayside.

I probably need to figure out a way to have a hobby and just make performing my hobby. Hmmm…


Miscellaneous Personal

April 2015 Reading List

Here are the books I finished reading in April, 2015. While I was sick most of April, I vegged out on Netflix more than books, so it was a light month.

I’m still really enjoying the Privateer Tales — they bring back memories of discovering Robert Heinlein when I was a kid.

  • Fear the Survivors (Fear Saga 2) by Stephen Moss
  • Fear the Future (Fear Saga 3) by Stephen Moss
  • Smuggler’s Dilemma (Privateer Tales 5) by Jamie McFarland
  • Cutpurse (Privateer Tales 6) by Jamie McFarland
  • The Emperor’s Conspiracy by William Zellmann
  • A Show of Force (Frontiers Saga 13) by Ryk Brown
  • Man’s Hope by William Zellmann
Miscellaneous Personal

March Reading List

Here are the books I finished reading in March, 2015. I forgot to post this earlier, so I’ll wait a few days and then post the April list.

I really recommend the ones by Robin Hobbs if you like fantasy, although Mariella likes fantasy and couldn’t get into them, so I’m not sure what’s wrong with her. Actually, I started the first one about a year ago and then dropped it after the first chapter, but so glad I tried again.

There’s another Assassin/Fool trilogy waiting for me but since they’re not part of the KindleUnlimited program I have to pay real money for them so I’m holding off. For now. 🙂

  • Lesser Prince (Guardians of Gaeland 1) by Jamie McFarlane
  • Star Soldier (Doom Star 1) by Vaughn Heppner
  • Assassin’s Apprentice (The Farseer Trilogy 1) By Robin Hobb
  • Royal Assassin (The Farseer Trilogy 2) by Robin Hobb
  • Assassin’s Quest (The Farseer Trilogy 3) by Robin Hobb
  • Fool’s Errand (Tawny Man Trilogy 1) by Robin Hobb
  • Golden Fool (Tawny Man Trilogy 2) by Robin Hobb
  • Fool’s Fate (Tawny Man Trilogy 3) by Robin Hobb
  • Empty Space by Alan Black
  • Star Splinter (Fractured Space 1) By J. G. Cressey
  • Fear the Sky (Fear Saga 1) by Stephen Moss
Feature Personal

My First Car Wreck

Early this morning, at 1:42 AM, our Buick was totaled when a kid rear-ended us on the Parks Highway in Wasilla. Zero warning! We were driving and chatting about Wanda and Sue’s trip to Seattle (I’d just picked them up at the airport and we were headed to drop Sue at her place) when BAM! I found myself looking at the ceiling of the car and weird forces are pushing me. By the time I look back out the windshield I see we’re in the oncoming lane and going into a skid, with the driver’s side leading the way. Fortunately there was nobody coming that way.

As I tried to steer us out of the skid, I saw something flying through the air in front of us (we were sliding sideways at that point) and when it hit the pavement I realized it was a person. They hit the ground and flopped and rolled like a rag doll and then just lay there as we came to a stop.

There was no screaming while it all happened, but as we stopped Wanda said, “What was that?!” And I said, “Someone hit us.”

I looked back down the road in case someone else might come barreling along and smash us, but nobody was coming. The car didn’t really want to move, but I drove it past the body laying on the highway to the shoulder and turned it off. Then, in case someone might came along and swerve around the body I started the car again and drove it another 100 feet up along the shoulder.

My back was hurting but it didn’t feel like there was anything majorly wrong anywhere else. Sue and Wanda both said they were fine and Wanda called 911. At that point two other cars had stopped and I assumed someone else would go see about the guy laying in the road. I didn’t want to try to get out of the car until paramedics were there in case my back was worse than I thought.

Wanda’s door was jammed shut (the car hit us in the rear passenger side) and she climbed out once the police started arriving. I waited for a paramedic and then climbed out (and it was a climb because my seat had bent back so I was reclined at an angle) and found I could walk fairly well. I turned down the offer of being strapped to a backboard and whisked to the hospital in an ambulance.

While the emergency crew looked after the other driver we walked around the car and I discovered why it didn’t want to drive very well — the right-rear wheel and been ripped completely off the car. We could see it laying back a ways on the embankment of the road.

Lianne came to pick us up and after some final paperwork and talking to the police, we left our car by the side of the road for a tow truck to pick up and we took Sue home. By the time we dropped her off I decided I should go to the hospital to have my back looked at — every little bump was killing me. We got to the hospital about 3AM and didn’t get home until almost 4 hours later. The x-rays were negative so they didn’t think I had any fractures, just sore muscles.

I went to bed with 800mg ibuprofen and Wanda and I slept until late afternoon. My back is better, but I’m still hobbling around like an old man.

We have no car until Monday when we’ll get a rental and we’ve contacted the other guy’s insurance company to get the ball rolling on getting reimbursement for the Buick.

I keep flashing back to the moment we got hit — I never saw the guy coming up behind us; the roads were basically empty. And then there was noise, and gravity forces, and my view was immediately of the ceiling in the car (from my head snapping back). It was probably the weirdest (and scariest) feeling I’ve ever had.

And now I’m feeling really paranoid about getting in another car. One reason I don’t like flying is that I don’t have any control over it. With driving you’re in control.

Until suddenly you’re not.


Miscellaneous Personal

February Reading List

Following are the books I finished reading in February. The last couple days of February and the first couple days of March had me trying to finish what should have been a good book (tons of 5-star reviews on Amazon). I finally quit at just over halfway through and put my first “nastygram” type review on Amazon.

March looks like it will be light compared to February simply because I’m playing catch-up on work and school (because I read too much last month? Nooo!) so the times I sneak in a few pages are minimized.

  • Lines of Departure (Frontlines #2) by Markos Kloos
  • Riptide (Jake Lassiter #5) by Paul Levine
  • Fool Me Twice (Jake Lassiter #6) by Paul Levine
  • Flesh and Bones (Jake Lassiter #7) by Paul Levine
  • Lassiter (Jake Lassiter #8) by Paul Levine
  • Last Chance Lassiter (Jake Lassiter #9) by Paul Levine
  • Alice by Charles Lamb
  • Design Rules for Free-to-Play Games by Nicholas Lovell & Rob Fahey
  • The Neon Lawyer by Victor Methos
  • The Lost Command (Lost Starship #2) by Vaughn Heppner