FC 150 - Candy is Dandy

Somebody made my day this week by telling me that she looked forward to the Friday Comic all week long. While I suspect this was a slight exaggeration*, it made me smile big. It also prodded me into doing a comic this week which I wasn't planning to do, what with all the real working I've been doing.

But here it is. Up until I actually opened GIMP*, I was planning on doing a different comic, although also Halloween related. Instead I did this one. Hopefully I will do the other one next week. And then maybe even one more before Halloween. Maybe 3 Halloween themed comics will make up for the terrible terrible pumpkin one I did a few years ago.

Now that I've started working again, Fridays once again mean something (rather than just an upcoming change in bus schedule). So now I too rejoice in the end of the week, and for more than a comic (although a comic helps :-) )
Thursday October 20 2011File under: comic

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One Seasons Work


Back in June, I posted about starting my hermit cabin in the woods out at the quarry. Well, I didn't find as much time to work over the summer as I had hoped*, but I got a pretty rockin' start.

As you can see from the janky panorama picture above, I've got 3 walls started (although barely, in one case), which gives me a pretty good idea of the footprint. The back wall is above waist height almost everywhere which feels pretty good. The two-sided walls are going quicker than I thought (since it is essentially building two walls (one outward and one inward facing)). I've only been able to devout chunks of time in 2 and 3 hour increments, and it still seems to be plodding along.

All in all, while I wish it was going faster, I'm super pleased with what I have so far. I can't wait for next building season (or, if I'm lucky, to find another pleasant weathered work day this year*). Oh, and since it has been a tradition on my other stone projects at the quarry, here's my self-protrait + project.
Monday October 17 2011File under: quarry

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Mosaic Maker


A buddy of mine approached me the other day about creating a visually appealing way of randomly displaying images from a large collection. He cited the example on the CG Hug homepage. It had been a long time since I got to do some programming problem solving like this, so I accepted the challenge.

While there are still a few tweaks to be done (images don't always completely fill the allotted cell), I'm pretty dang happy with what has emerged. Click here if you want to give it a try. Every reload will give you a different mosaic pattern and different random assortment of pictures. Also feel free to tweak the parameters in the url for different sized grids. For the time being, I'm only pulling images from /stuff9 (my most recent year or so of posts), but it would be neat to expand it someday, maybe even integrate it into the header of the blog*.

Anyway, kind of a neat little project.
Thursday October 13 2011File under: coding, pics

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FC 149 - No Money Down

I'm not stoked on this comic. In fact, I'm so not stoked that I considered not posting it. But then I remembered that people like different comics. Ones that I'm tepid on, people will tell me it is their favorite. My favorite ones often get a meh response. So I'm putting it out there anyway, if only to keep up the tradition (and maybe get a chuckle or two from someone out there).

It's not the concept that I don't like. In fact, the idea of some parental action causing the need for therapy down the road therefore offsetting the cost today is one that came up in real life that we laughed about. In fact, "that's a comic idea!" I'm sure rolled off my tongue. But the baby in a cage isn't a right fit, in my opinion. But I got time crunched* and got too invested before I changed my mind, so I had to live with it.

Anyway, that's more insight than you could have possibly wanted into this week's comic. Happy Friday!
Thursday October 6 2011File under: comic

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HDR Quarry Pic


I didn't take this photo. I wish I did. Bootstrap took it and then did whatever it is he did to make it look like this. He told me a little about it: wide angle lens, panorama stitched together, and HDR* magic.

For those who can't place it, this a picture taken from the jumping cliff at the [Lookout Arts] Quarry. Bootstrap says it was taken February of 2010, so you can see the water level is a little lower than it is currently. And you can see the roof to the woodshed is still standing. (It sure is neat to be a part of something so much that I can date things that way.)

Anyway, it's just a super neat picture that I wanted to share. Enjoy!
Monday October 3 2011File under: quarry

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FC 148 - Four Letter Word for Hottie

Ah comic day... I'm super stoked on this week's comic because it has a cute girl and a crossword puzzle in it. What could be better*?

Speaking of comics, have you heard of the site reddit.com*? It allows its users to submit content on a particular category, and then the content is rated by other users basically making it a place to find the latest internet happenings on any given topic. In practice, there is a lot of nerd-ism and insider-ness to it, but the theory is sound.

Anyway, last week, I submitted 2 comics, one to the /r/comics category and one to /r/juggling. To watch the fallout of said postings was supremely interesting to me. Seeing how much traffic it drove, the comments, the up and down votes, and the visitors paths all kept me entertained for a few days. It also raised many questions including esoteric ones such as why do I want people to read my comics? and more. Anyway, while I'm sure I didn't get any new readers, it was an experiment that I might have to try again sometime soon.

(Oh, speaking of crosswords, I just finished up my latest crossword About Time. It hasn't been proofed by my editor yet, but if you want to have a shot, let me know what you think.)
Thursday September 29 2011File under: comic

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Pumpkins to Potatoes and More

What a weekend! After what feels like non-stop weekends of festivals for the past month, this weekend I found myself checking out 3 more. First off, the Pumpkin Pitch in Burlington. I've been wanting to go to this for years but never thinking about it until Halloween which is too late. This year, however, I saw the sign while riding the bus* so made it happen. Basically, competitors build giant trebuchets and huck pumpkins. The winning team chucked one over 1500 feet!

From the pumpkins to potatoes, we headed to Mount Vernon to check out their harvest festival which was highlighted by a world record attempt for the largest potatoes au gratin. While the spectacle was fun and it was great to run into so many folks I knew, the potatoes were rather unsatisfying: undercooked, cold, and lacking any spices whatsoever. Luckily, a hop over to the Skagit coop for some bacon ice cream cleansed the palette.

Lastly, after somehow missing the action for the last 5 or more years, I walked to downtown Anacortes to check out the Oyster Run, our town's annual motorcycle rally. In a word, it was big. So so so many motorcycles and people in black leather. While it was interesting to stroll through and see all the action, I can't say that I'm so excited that I'm looking forward to next year. But a party is a party and it was definitely good for the businesses of A-train.

All in all, a fun weekend. Who would have thought our little corner of the state could be so exciting!
Monday September 26 2011File under: Anacortes, events

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FC 147 - If a Tree Chokes in the Woods...

This week represents another co-opted comic idea, but it was just too good to pass up. Don't worry, it's not stolen from another comic, just life.

On another, non-thievery note, I tried a little experiment this go 'round. I didn't use the straight line tool at all*. One surprising note is that it went a whole lot quicker. Maybe it was from content (fewer people always makes for faster comics), or maybe the traditional way is that much faster. Overall, I'm not displeased with how it turned out.

Anyway, for this first day of fall, I hope you start it out with a chuckle. Happy Friday!
Friday September 23 2011File under: comic

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Band of Bellingham Boy Beards

Bellingham has a pretty amazing juggling scene. That point was made quite clear this weekend at the Lopez Jugglefest when a Seattle* juggler sought out Bellingham jugglers to try out some complicated patterns. The patterns were a success, partially because there were a few of us that have been doing them throughout the summer at Bellingham's Juggling Club, which is quite impressive in numbers and skill, esp. for the town's small size.

Another thing about Bellingham jugglers is the tendency toward beardedness. In homage to this, I put together the 3rd annual Band of Bellingham Boy Beards skit at the public show* at Lopez. As always, the skit was meh. We would rather spend our time working on 16-club Philadelphia lines rather than rehearse for a silly act. But nonetheless, it was fun.

Maybe next year, I'll plan the BoBBBs skit more than 4 hours in advance so that we can perform something a little more fun and entertaining. But whatever the case, the Lopez Jugglefest is the highlight of the juggling year and only 51 more weeks until we can do it again!
Wednesday September 21 2011File under: juggling

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FC 146 - Soups On

To start, I have to get a few excuses out of the way. First off, if you happened to notice the lack of a Friday Comic last week, it was because I was Sh'banging*. While it would have been possible to take a break from all the preparations and fun to quickly put together a comic, I chose to be in the moment instead. Secondly, the reasons for the late post time on today's comic are two-fold. I am on Lopez Island, helping set up for Juggle Fest (possibly the best juggling festival on the West Coast). Last night, I was down at the bakery mixing, baking, transporting, and testing all the wonderful baked goods for the fest. Then, the power went out all over the island. I guess thats one of the hiccups of island life.

Anyway, without further ado, here's this week's comic. One benefit of the week delay is that I got to "workshop", bouncing ideas and punch lines off a few people. The one I finally setted on wasn't even close to what I was originally thinking of, so I'm super glad for the help.
Friday September 16 2011File under: comic

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