Late Friday post on Saturday morning

Friday was busy and I neglected to make my daily post, so I’m dong it on Saturday morning.

I began Friday with writing a last few Irregular Webcomic! scripts over breakfast. Then it was off to the supermarket for the weekly grocery shopping. It was a smaller load this week, with not much running out since last week. I got some fresh fruit and vegetables and a few bits and pieces like a bag of lentils and a block of cheese – and some toothpaste since it was on sale for $2 off. There are some products I only ever buy when they are on sale, and just keep enough of a stockpile so that I can wait until next time they are on sale. Ice cream I never buy at full price either, although it often runs out before the next sale and I have to make do with no ice cream for a week or two!

Back home I got stuck into photographing Lego and miniatures sets for the batch of comics that I’d just finished writing. I started at 10:00, after unpacking the groceries, and finished after midday, just in time for lunch.

In the afternoon I took a bit of a break from comicking and processed and posted some old photos from a trip to Thailand back in 2005. Then I got stuck into assembling the comics from the photos taken in the morning, and finished off half a dozen or so before my wife came home from work with Scully. We all went out for dinner, to a nice French creperie. Since it was very cold and we had to sit outside with Scully, I had some mulled cider to wash down my galettes and crepes. Mmmm.

Back home, my friends began an impromptu games night, interstitial to our scheduled fortnightly games nights. We’ve been working on a custom word list for skribbl.io (an online implementation of a Pictionary-like drawing game), since the default word list skews very American. We got everyone to submit a few hundred words and came up with a list of over 1300 custom words to draw. We have things like “lamington”, “echidna”, “Mister Squiggle”, “Circular Quay”, and so on, as well as more generic things. It was loads of fun, and actually a bit more challenging as some of the words we listed were quite difficult to draw.

New content today:

Back to work after the weekend away…

Scully was so exhausted after our weekend trip that she basically slept all evening and solidly all through the night – which was good because that meant my wife and I got a good night’s sleep too.

Monday dawned cold and wet. It’s been raining heavily here in Sydney, and there are several flooding incidents around the city and the surrounding region. The rain hasn’t let up all day, and we’re in for more overnight and tomorrow.

After doing some grocery shopping in the morning, I spent most of the day assembling Irregular Webcomic! strips and then writing annotations for them, to complete this latest batch of comics. After doing that I had a bit of time to go through photos I took on the weekend trip. I’ve identified all the birds I took photos of, and am quite amazed that I got photos of three new species I hadn’t photographed before, so that’s pretty good!

New content today:

Irregular photography

I finished writing the last few Irregular Webcomics in a batch and then spent this afternoon photographing the scenes. I’ll assemble them over the next few days.

Not much else to report. I’m just holding my breath with the COVID news here in Sydney every day, wondering if they’re going to announce new travel restrictions or not. Given we are planning to leave on Friday for a weekend away in the countryside, it’ll be disappointing if cases rise enough to disrupt that.

New content today:

A recovery day

I had a bit of an interrupted sleep last night, and woke up still quite tired. I ended up taking it pretty easy today, mostly working on writing a new batch of Irregular Webcomic! scripts.

I also took Scully out twice, for a morning walk, and then to to the park to meet other dogs and owners in the late afternoon. While there, I popped into the bakery that is a short walk away to get a loaf of sourdough and also some burger buns for dinner. They didn’t have any buns left, but they did have a challah loaf, which looked somewhat similar to the brioche-like buns they have. I don’t think I’ve ever had challah before, but it looked good, and I figured I could cut it into sections the right size for a burger and then split them horizontally.

When I got home, I realised the challah was much denser and heavier than the brioche buns, and trying it it was a little sweet, which I hadn’t expected at all. Nevertheless, I sliced it up and we used it as burger buns (for chick pea and lentil patty burgers, with cheese, tomato, and beetroot). It was actually really delicious. I think the rest of the challah will go quickly. It seems like it would be an ideal bread for French toast, too.

New content today:

Getting back up to speed

I was up to 2am last night, with my ISO Photography Standards meeting, as explained yesterday. The meeting chair kept things moving and was meticulous with keeping discussion to time, so we didn’t go late, and the meeting ended as scheduled at 2am Sydney time (midday in New York City). By the time I brushed my teeth and otherwise prepared for bed it was about 20 minute past – an incredibly late night for me.

I woke this morning around 7am, since one late night isn’t enough to trigger a change of morning rising habit, so I didn’t get a normal night’s sleep. So now as late evening approaches, I’m pretty tired already…. but have to stay up again and participate in technical discussion until 2am all over again. I just have to keep the finish line of Friday night in mind.

Today I worked on a new batch of Irregular Webcomic! strips – the first new ones I’ve been able to make since I injured my hand. I didn’t have time to write a normal full batch of 20 strips (4 weeks worth), only managing to write 10 before I decided I had to go ahead and start photographing and assembling, because I need new strips ready for tomorrow night’s update when the guest strips sent by Chris Burke run out.

Normally I take the photos when my wife and Scully are out of the house, because it involves a big mess all over the living room floor as I lay out all my Lego boxes. However with my wife working from home at the moment due to COVID-19, it’s difficult to find such times. Fortunately today was Scully’s 6-weekly grooming appointment at the dog groomer. So I dropped her off and then rushed through taking the Lego photos while she at least was out of the house.

The dog groomer moved premises recently, and this was the first time we’d been to the new premises. It’s really nice, in a more modern building (the move was because the previous building is going to be demolished for redevelopment), with more space for the all the dogs in daycare. Scully was a bit nervous at first because she didn’t know what this new place was about, but as soon as she recognised the groomer she was happy.

Now, to kill another hour or so and then try to stay alert through three hours of technical standards work…

New content today:

Fortnightly games night

It’s the Friday of our fortnightly board games night, and I am currently in the middle of a game of Bärenpark as I type this up, via Tabletop Simulator as we hold it virtually during COVID lockdown.

This morning I did a weekly grocery shop. I’ve scaled down the shopping list after realising that I was buying too much food for us to eat in a week, so it was a smaller shop than it has been the last few weeks. After that I spent the rest of the morning photographing the new batch of Irregular Webcomic! comics that I finished writing last night, which took up until lunch time.

This afternoon I went out with my wife and Scully to check out the new premises of her doggy daycare and grooming place, which is moving this weekend. It’s near a kitchen supply shop, and I went in to buy a new kitchen knife. Turned out they had a huge sale on knife sets, so I ended up getting a set of 6 knives and matching knife block. I’m quite excited, as we’ve only ever had cheap knives before, and now I feel like a proper chef with a fancy set of knives.

New content today:

Comic batching

Today was a writing day, churning out scripts for a new batch of Irregular Webcomic. I actually started this earlier in the week, but my plan was to do the photography on Friday morning, and I realised this morning that I was less than halfway to having a batch written and ready to photograph. So I had to knuckle down and bet funny and write stuff today. I just finished the batch a few minutes ago, after 8pm.

In between I went for a walk, made a loaf of banana bread, and cooked a dinner of vegetarian sausages, garlic mashed potatoes, and crispy fried Brussels sprouts with miso, garlic, and chilli. It’s about as unhealthy as you can get for a vegetarian meal! But it was delicious.

Oh… it’s getting cool enough at night that Scully has started wearing pyjamas…

Scully with pyjamas

New content today:

Knuckle down Sunday

I need to get a new batch of Irregular Webcomic! photographed and started assembly before Friday this week, since that’s when my buffer runs out. My plan is to photograph on Monday, to give me time to start assembling comics and writing annotations before Friday. That timetable requires me to have a batch of 20+ comic scripts ready to shoot on Monday morning. Which required me to write 20 comic scripts… today.

Normally I take 2-4 days to write a batch of comics. It’s not easy work – you can’t just sit down and be funny and reel off script after script. It doesn’t work like that. There’s writer’s block, distractions, workshopping various possibilities, writing joke attempts and determining if they’re not funny enough, and even sometimes doing actual research involving web searches, reading Wikipedia pages or other websites. On average, I’m lucky if I can write 6 or 7 strips in one day.

Today I chained myself to the desk, threw on some music, and blasted out some comics. I started before 9am, and now, just after 7pm as I write this, I have written 23 new strips, which is a slightly larger batch than normal. (I was inspired for one theme and write some extra strips.)

Phew!

And now I’m going to relax and watch some TV.

New content today: