Comic assembling

I spent most of today assembling the new batch of Irregular Webcomic! strips from the photos I took yesterday. For one comic I had to take two photos of each panel, because I wanted to composite them to create a semi-transparent figure. I also added a blue glow using some Photoshop tricks, and I think the result worked quite well:

Ghost Obi-Wan

So that’s a sneak preview of a future comic.

I didn’t really do much else today – assembling the batch of comics pretty much ate up a full day of work. Oh, I watched the new Star Wars: Rise of Skywalker trailer that was released. Pretty cool!

New content today:

Comic photos and walking

This morning I photographed the new batch of Irregular Webcomic! strips that I wrote over the weekend. I finished just in time for lunch, so went for a nice long walk to stretch my legs and get some food. I ended up doing a loop to the Italian bakery and back via a different route, completing 6.6 kilometres according to my tracking app. Phew!

Ad then when I got home I realised I should have got some groceries – we needed milk and bread, and probably something to cook for dinner. So later in the afternoon I took another walk up to the supermarket.

While at home I got a delivery – a copy of the original cover printing of the 1st edition AD&D Monster Manual. I’ve had a Monster Manual since 1983 or so, but it was the updated cover art, while I had the original cover art of the Dungeon Masters Guide, so they never matched. I decided a while back to try to get an original cover Monster Manual, and have been watching eBay for several months now. I bid on a few but lost the auction, and there was one “buy it now” that looked good from a seller in the UK, except it was a large bookseller and they had a disclaimer that the cover photo was a stock photo and not the actual product, and they couldn’t guarantee that the cover art was the same as the photo. I contacted them and said I was after a specific cover art, and could they verify it for me, and they wrote back and basically said no… so I declined to purchase that one. But last week I found an inexpensive copy in good condition from an Australian seller, and snapped it up. When it arrived today, I was very pleased, as it’s in great condition for the age. And now I finally, after 36 years, have a complete collection of the original artwork AD&D rulebooks.

Monster Manual

New content today:

Comic writing slog part 2

Another day of writing comics. I managed to get some momentum today and finished off the batch, ready to start photographing them tomorrow.

In some spare time I worked on another mezzacotta random generator, this time a random bird name generator. This was inspired by me discussing some actual birds with friends, and someone suggesting that since so many birds are named after colours and markings, it’d be easy to randomly generate new names. And yes, it was very quick and easy, using our generator framework.

Tonight I cooked soup for dinner, and used my new Bamix stick blender for the first time. It works really well – I can tell immediately that it’s better quality than our previous one. The old one got noticeably hot very quickly from the motor, and had to be mashed up and down to access all the vegetable chunks in the soup. The Bamix stayed nice and cool, and it creates a vortex in the soup that sucks the chunks into the blades, so there’s a lot less manual motion required. Really nice. The soup was chick pea, cauliflower, and carrot.

New content today:

Comic writing slog

I need to get another batch of Irregular Webcomic! made before I leave for a week in Germany on Friday, so I spent most of today struggling to write scripts. It’s bad when you need to write and you can’t think of anything. To distract myself and shift mental gears hoping that that would kickstart things, I did various housework and took Scully for a big long walk.

The weather was hot and sunny when we left, but as we walked the dark grey clouds rolled in, and it started raining by the time we got home.

Scully before the storm

Fortunately we got in with just the first few drops beginning to fall.

This evening I watched the Rugby World Cup quarter final game from Japan: Australia v England. What a debacle. 🙁

New content today:

Comic Sunday

This morning my wife and I went for a long walk with Scully, taking her through the bushland near the harbour for the first time in several weeks. A bit over a month ago the local council deployed poison fox baits in the bushland in an effort to control/eradicate the feral fox population. The area was off limits for dogs, because the baits are also lethal to them, so we had to take alternate routes. But the area was posted as clear a week or so ago, so we took advantage today. And after the bush section we walked along the waterfront…

Scully on Sunday

We didn’t get home until close to lunchtime, since we stopped for morning tea at a bakery. They have the most delicious fruit danishes there – I had an apricot one. The pastry is incredibly crisp and flaky and buttery.

Most of the afternoon I spent completing the batch of Irregular Webcomic! strips I’ve been working on for the past week. The comics are now all assembled, but I still have to write all the annotations and enter them into the database where they’re queued up for publication. That’s another half day of work or so.

New content today:

Comic maker, makin’ comics

Besides the usual Saturday morning housework, today was mostly spent making comics. A new strip of Darths & Droids, and assembling strips from the batch of Irregular Webcomic! photos I took during the week.

Um, that’s about it. I went out for dinner with my wife to an Indian restaurant – a new one we hadn’t been to before. It was good.

New content today:

Comic batching

I still had three or four strips to write in the latest batch of Irregular Webcomic!, so I started on those first thing this morning. I powered through writing them in about an hour or so, and it was still early enough to get to work on photographing, so I did. I had to run down to the garage to retrieve my Lego Jabba the Hutt for one new comic. It would have been ideal to have the Lego Boushh figure as well, but I don’t have that so I had to improvise:

... holding a thermal detonator!

Now that I look at it, I realise this scene shouldn’t have Leia in the slave outfit next to Jabba… but, oh well. Anyway, building sets and taking photos for the comics took several hours, and I didn’t finish until a late lunch time.

After lunch I took Scully for a walk and dropped in at the small nearby supermarket to pick up some fruit. And this afternoon I starting putting the finishing touches on the Magic: the Gathering thing I’m preparing for Friday night. It’s nearly finished – hopefully I’ll be able to finish it off tomorrow so I can work on some other things later in the week.

New content today:

Basil Sunday

This morning my wife and I took Scully on a long walk, around to a bakery/cafe over in the next suburb, where we stopped for a morning tea. On the way back we ran into another couple walking a dog, and they were new to the area, so were asking us about good routes for walking dogs. We showed them part of the way we were taking home, down a steep set of steps to the Harbour shore and along a cove where there’s a small marina with yachts. It’s a nice walk, and there are often several types of birds around: ducks, cormorants, gulls, swallows, occasionally parrots.

Back at home I continued writing new scripts for Irregular Webcomic!, before realising that hadn’t made today’s Darths & Droids strip yet! So I made that (my friends and I had written the script a couple of weeks ago).

Late in the afternoon we went to the hardware and pet stores. We wanted to get a basil plant so we’d have fresh basil leaves to use for cooking through the summer. And some saucers to go under the pots of the basil and the chilli I bought the other day, to catch any excess watering.

New content today:

Bread and Codenames

Saturday – more housework! After cleaning various things this morning I got stuck into writing some new Irregular Webcomic! scripts. I want to get another batch made next week if I can, and then complete another batch before I leave for my trip to Germany at the end of October. I wrote about half the batch today – hopefully I’ll have time to finish it off tomorrow.

It was approaching lunch time and I was getting hungry, so I checked the kitchen. We had 2/3 of a loaf of bread bought from the supermarket on Thursday, so I planned to make myself some sandwiches. I grabbed the bread… and noticed that the plastic bag had a large hole in it at the bottom end. Ragged, like it had been torn open. And a big chunk of the bread inside the hole had been… eaten away. It looked like mouse or rat damage.

Now I’m pretty sure we don’t have mice in the house, and we store the bread under a plastic cake cover so there’s no way anything could get in. So this must have occurred at the supermarket, and we just didn’t notice it until now. My immediate problem was that this left me with nothing straightforward to eat for lunch. (I wasn’t going to eat slices of a loaf that’s had mice/rats chewing on it.) So I took the rodent-gnawed loaf and went for a walk up to the supermarket to exchange it, and to buy some lunch on the way. I got sushi. The supermarket exchanged the bread for a new loaf with no issues, and the woman I spoke to said she’d show the damaged loaf to the manager.

This afternoon: more comic writing, distracted a bit by wondering if I have a Lego Boushh or not, and how much it would cost to acquire one (about $35 it turns out – too much for one comic). Then I watched Australia’s first game in the Rugby World Cup in Japan, as they played against Fiji in Sapporo. Fiji got off to a good start and led the scoring until the 62nd minute, when the Aussies finally pulled ahead – and from there the Fijians were visibly fatiguing while the Aussies stormed all over them, scoring multiple more times to win comfortably in the end. Our next game is against Wales next weekend.

After the game my wife and I took Scully to the park for some exercise. We’re trying a new training treat: tinned salmon, which she gets a morsel of for successfully responding to our call to “come here”. She obeys that one reasonably well, but not if she gets distracted by something, so we’re working on strengthening it. The good news is she likes the salmon, and was very keen to “come here” to get some.

This evening I played some games of Codenames Duet with my wife. We lost the first game when I guessed an assassin card. Here’s the layout midway through the second game, where we’re going better:

Codenames Duet

At this stage I had to clue to my wife MARATHON, ST PATRICK, WEREWOLF, and MONKEY. I considered “hairy” for WEREWOLF and MONKEY, but was stymied by the presence of BEARD. I plumped for “person” to clue ST PATRICK and WEREWOLF, which thankfully worked, and after that it was all downhill to the finish, as we won it handily. So 1 loss, 1 win.

New content today:

Late Wednesday update

I had some strange issues with WordPress last night, so this post is several hours late.

On Wednesday my year 6 Ethics class topic was the Heinz dilemma. I introduced it by reading the text from the syllabus: “Today we’re going to discuss a famous ethical dilemma.” Immediately one girl put her hand up and asked “What, like the trolley problem?” I hadn’t expected anyone in a class of 10 and 11 year olds to be familiar with that, but it was good to hear! I had to say no though, it was a different problem.

I was interested in how this discussion would go because in a previous topic most of the kids expressed the principle that saving a human life was of paramount importance, while previously in the current topic (on stealing) several of the kids had stated that stealing is always morally wrong, because it’s against the law. Often the same kids. So pitting the saving a human life against having to steal to do it led to a lot of interesting back and forth as the kids took their turns to talk. In the end, most fell on the side that stealing to save someone’s life was morally acceptable, but there were a significant number of holdouts who said that because it was against the law, sadly they would have to let the person die. Hopefully the kids will continue to discuss this one after the class.

I spent much of the rest of the day researching and writing annotations for the new batch of Irregular Webcomic! strips that I made earlier in the week. I still have a few more to do to complete the batch, and then it’ll be on to writing a new entry for 100 Proofs that the Earth is a Globe.

New content for Wednesday: