August 2008


So, for a while now I’ve been a bit disappointed with the overall statistics and theme/look-and-feel/widget-control with a blog hosted on wordpress.com (even though FREE is a very good price).

After quite a bit of thought, and research, and poking the tires, AND testing stuff out…

…I’d like to present to you Prince Charming is Dead v2.0!

I’m MUCH happier with the layout, theme, inline audio player, file control and overall beauty of the system.  While wordpress.com was fun to cut my teeth on, I’m definitely ready for the opportunities that having my own hosted site presents.

I’ll go over what those additional features will be in the near future (think audio blogs, more images, some examples of my writing “for pay”, etc…) so stay tuned.

For now, if you don’t mind, please click over, kick the tires and tell me if you HATE it or if it’s gonna be OK.

I’m planning on redirecting deadcharming.wordpress.com (so everyone’s existing feeds, links, etc. will continue to work with NO effort or visible change) on Friday, Aug. 15th.

I wish I could say that’s because I’m waiting until the weekend so that the least amount of traffic gets disrupted, but let’s be honest, Friday is payday and I’m not buying credits until then.  Sad, I know.

So what does all this mean?  it means stuff will look different and that’s it.  deadcharming.wordpress.com will be here, the links will be here, the comments will be here, nothing is changing except the place that it’s hosted and the way that it looks (hopefully both for the better).

Advertisements

Some time in 1990 I was wandering through the Karcher Mall in Nampa Idaho (it might actually be in Caldwell…the line between those two gets a bit confusing) and I happened to walk into the Sam Goody music store when they were playing Windham Hill: The First Ten Years over the sound system.

I don’t remember exactly what I was there to get.  Something by Nirvana or Sting or Nine Inch Nails or Damn Yankees or…or something.  What I was NOT there to buy was acoustic guitar music.

I listened to the music coming from the speakers with very conflicted emotions.  On one hand, at one level, I had an incredibly visceral reaction to it.  It touched my emotions directly without going down the usual path of stories and words.

On the other hand, it was really unlike anything else in my music collection.  I couldn’t really parse it’s “cool” factor without some kind of frame of reference.  I was a teenage boy who lived in a dormitory with all my peers.  We basically had two groups, rocker/metal/grunge listeners and country music listeners. The two groups didn’t particularly get along, and teenage boys aren’t very good at social independence…so ultimately I walked out of the store without buying anything.

Thirty minutes later I walked back in, laid down my twenty bucks, and walked out with a two-disk CD collection that has been a staple of my music library for almost two decades.

For the rest of my high school experience (and on into “real life”) I pretty much exemplified eclectic tastes in music, books, and pretty much any other media you can think of or define.  While many things contribute to my overall tastes and preferences, that moment in a Sam Goody was a watershed event in my musical development.

So it was no surprise that on Saturday evening, as I was taking pictures of an Oregon coast sunset, my iPod was gently playing the first disk on repeat.

For starters, I was listening to George Winston play “Peace” as I took the following shots.

IMG_8789

IMG_8792

IMG_8800

And then Michael Hedges’ “Aerial Boundaries” came on at almost exactly the right moment…I apologize for the sound quality on this video, it really doesn’t do the song or the artist the justice they deserve.

And based entirely on the theme of the music, I hope you can see why it was so moving as I was taking to following photos:

IMG_8861

IMG_8822

IMG_8823

IMG_8885

IMG_8888

IMG_8889

IMG_8890

IMG_8896

IMG_8897

IMG_8959

And then, because album repeat is a beautiful thing, Will Ackerman’s “Bricklayer’s Beautiful Daughter” began to play as the last strains of light fell on the coast.

If I ever get married again, AND I get to have any say in the whole event, I’d like to have an outdoor wedding at sunset.  On a beach.  And this is the music I would like to have played as the bride’s processional.

It captured the moment of my last shots so perfectly I couldn’t walk away until the song had ended.

IMG_9000

IMG_9007

It’s day three of the wacky ho-down that is my family’s semi-annual family reunion, and soon I’ll head down for the formal banquet.  Earlier today we had the “house of cousins” meeting (because for a family this large, you have to have your own representative governing bodies) which ended with a rather in-depth discussion of the making of leftse (it’s a Norwegian thing) which has inspired me to take up my family’s ethnic cooking when I get home.

I’ve walked on the beach, explored the local shops (and thank you, Scomerican Girl, the cheese popcorn really was as good as advertised), played 36 holes of golf (damn does my back ache), and I’ve talked for hours with people I used to see daily but now only see once every couple of years, at best.

So, I thought I’d share a certain revelation I’ve had in the last couple of days or so.  If you don’t watch “The Big Bang Theory” on television, this whole post is gonna be kinda meaningless…so…sorry about that.

Anyway, I realized that no matter how much I might want to be Leonard, I’m actually Sheldon.

Unfortunately, I’m serious.  In this, the trial of public perception, I (serving as both the prosecution AND the defense) would like to present to following evidence:

Exhibit A) My Comment on When is this lady gonna stop writing about her kid?

Notice how the conversation actually had NOTHING to do with quarks or leptons?  Yep…my inner geek/nerd overrides all things.

Exhibit B) My Comment on I got married to the widow next door…

Yeah, my collegiate focus was actually on History and Literature (I was an Anthropology/Archaeology major who wanted a minor in classical lit)…and Art (at one point I was a declared Fine Art major who took all the art history classes).  I do have 48 credits in upper-level computer classes…but that was stuff I did for fun.  I also took two 300 series physics classes “for fun” so that should explain a LOT about what was wrong with my past definition of fun.

Exhibit C) My Comment on …but next time, WITH COSTUMES!

This is the place where I admit to owning action figures and explain some background to the correlation of the visual design of Storm Trooper armor to Boba Fett’s Mandalorian armor.

Yes, I have camped out to buy tickets to a Star Wars movie.  More than once.

Yes, I have quoted a Star Wars movie in a professional setting.  More than once.

Yes, I have corrected someone else’s example-by-metaphor because they misstated a basic function of physics (the earth’s rotation does NOT create gravity, and please DON’T claim that it does in a room full of professionals…because I will call you on it, and that won’t help your presentation AT ALL). Sadly, also more than once. For the same person.

I now suspect that I am actually insufferably annoying.  I suspect that I am Sheldon and I just didn’t see it before now.  I always assume that if someone is saying something inaccurate, then they would WANT to know that what they were saying was, in fact, wrong.

After a few episodes of TBBT I now suspect that it might be ever so slightly possible that they, in fact, do NOT want to be corrected.

When I watch TBBT I always see myself in Leonard’s shoes.  Geeky, intelligent, perhaps a bit overzealous in some area’s, but all-in-all a good guy who just needs some polishing.

I’m now listening to stories about myself from ten years ago or more…and I’m not hearing Leonard…I’m hearing Sheldon. Blunt, abrupt, unapologetically smarter than other people, and without the social grace to just shut up and smile smugly while nodding my head.  This makes me sad, and a bit embarrassed.

Suddenly, I’m afraid I’m “that guy” or at least that I’ve been “that guy” for long stretches in the past.

If there’s any bright side to all of this…a sort of silver lining perhaps…it’s that several times this weekend I’ve been told how much mellower and more personable I am compared to times past.

So maybe, just maybe, I have some hope of being Leonard after all…