Skip to main content


Showing posts from February, 2016

Billy Rankin - Baby Come Back

The Celestial Heavens

The mythology of the heavens says that Kirrac sits in a great crystal sphere that houses all the objects that make up the solar system. At its center are two suns, one as red as the brightest ruby, the other as green as an emerald. At the edge of the great crystal sphere the light of these suns reflects on the millions of facets that make up the surface of the sphere, and thus creating the twinkling stars of the night sky. Between the suns and the stars lie the planets that make up the mythological Sphere of Arion. It is said that beyond the sphere lies an ocean of astral ether upon which countless millions of other crystal spheres are suspended. From our earthly stand point, we know this to be ridiculous, however, it is a poetic notion held by a more primitive people. Moons of Kirrac Kirrac has nine recognized moons and one outlier that is generally considered to be a star or distant planet by the populace. As a group these moons are known as the Nine Celestial Guardians. I will not e

Deadpool Review and Rating

Lady Ronn and I, not me and Lady Ronn, never me and Lady Ronn, went and saw Deadpool last night. She really liked it, I thought it was good. So where would I rank it, oh say, on the Netflix scale. Say 1 star to 5 stars. One Star: Hated It Two Stars: Didn't Like It Three Stars: Liked It Four Stars: Really Liked It Five Stars: Loved It The problem with this system is it lacks a little nuance, but it is what it is and we have to use it. I'm going to be so bummed when Netflix changes to something more detailed than this. I might have to put more thought into these things. Which I do not want to do. So on this scale Lady Ronn would probably give Deadpool four or maybe even five stars. It ain’t that good. It’s amusing, sure. I laughed out loud, briefly, once. What can I say, the floppy hands were funny to me. The story seemed a little lacking, but not to the point of being a detriment to the film. They broke the fourth wall, they swore, there was sex and nudity, lots of vio

Whatcha Doing

Hole in One

Today I did something I haven’t done before. I drilled a hole in a quartz counter top. And I have to say, it was a pretty easy thing to do. One of my clients wants a new coffee maker, the installer told them he needs to run a 3/8-inch braided water line to it and needed a hole in their counter top to do it. That’s where I come in. first, I think that’s a crazy size waterline for a coffee maker. I work around a lot of these things and they all have ¼-inch plastic lines going to them, this braided line stuff is way overkill. But, I do what they ask me too. I was a little nervous about this drilling out a quartz counter top stuff. This is a nice counter and I sure would hate to crack it or do some other sort of damage to it. But I watched some YouTube videos and checked out some websites and determined that, what-the-hell, I’ll give it a shot. I picked up a Milwaukee 1 in. Diamond Plus Mini Hole Saw bit at the Home Depot. It was like $35. I was a little nervous because there was no pilot

All Fixed Up

Emma is back from her overnight visit to C-Snip . She is doing fine and seems none the worse for having her surgery, no complications, no concerns. She's got a shaved belly, a funny green tattoo, and some sutures, but is glad to be home. The folks at C-Snip are probably glad to have her at home too. Seems she was causing such a ruckus with the other cats that she had to have her cat carrier placed in the bathroom away from everybody else. Momma's little angel.

Ronn's Websites

I have my website, , back up and running after the whole malware incident. I still have to relink the pictures in most of the posts further back, but that will be an ongoing process. It turns out that it’s not as much fun as you might expect to locate all those pictures and relink them to their posts. However, it has inspired me to change the way I’m backing things up so that I can avoid this process in the event of any future problems. I’ve changed the plugin that I’m using to share with the social media sites, so you may have noticed a bit of a change in the appearance of those posts. I’m going with a combination of YoastSEO and Jetpack for most of the WordPress management. I have also switched the plugin being used for picture albums, FooGallery is easy and I’m pretty happy with the results. I’ve added some additional security, spam, and back-up plugins in addition to the stuff I’m running outside of my WordPress install. My hope is to not have to tear everything down ne

Baenrahl is Secret Societies

The massive cities and larger settlements of Kirrac are a breeding ground for tight-knit groups of like-minded individuals; be they guilds, gangs, colleges, or any of a thousand less public organizations. The Regents ultimately control everything, but each exercises that control differently, which in itself has a tendency to grow conspirators like flowers on a vine. Opposing factions among the Templars find themselves at cross purposes and conflicting goals. Government agencies vie with each other for money, power, and influence. Guilds rise and fall through action or inaction as much as by the ebb and flow of commerce. To be successful, an individual must have a particular set of skills, a strong sense of personal honor, and a certain amount of panache. The more of these individuals any given group has, the more likely it is to find favor in such a society. And when it cannot find such favor, there is always recourse to fall back on the blade or the bottle. Few reputations can survive

Back In My Day


Scarred but Still Standing

Went out this morning to check on the house after all that wind. Things are pretty much the same as they were when I checked on them yesterday. Those missing pieces were in the backyard, but they're pretty well beat up. I'm thinking only one of them is salvageable, the others have been cracked or have pieces broken off. Looks to me like I'm going to need three pieces of siding, but if I'm going to buy some, I might just as well buy enough to do the shed I'd like to build in the spring. So there you have it, another project gets added to the list. [caption id="attachment_5972" align="alignleft" width="840"] Wind Storm 2/19/2016[/caption]

Just Being Neighborly

After work tonight I took a phone call from my neighbor across the street, Ted, the one who I hooked up with a job. Okay, I told him about the job, he actually did the rest himself. Anyway, he called to tell me that my siding was blowing off the side of the house. Which was odd, given that I don't think he was actually home. Apparently, my next door neighbor had called him to tell him to call me to tell me my siding was blowing off in the high winds.... because, right next door... I appreciate them letting me know my house was blowing away. It just seems like a roundabout way of doing so. I might have just walked over, but I'm crazy like that. The wind has been crazy this afternoon and sure enough, when I went to check there were two pieces of siding gone. That was hours ago and the wind hasn't abated. I really don't know what I'll find in tomorrow when I go out to fix the mess. Like I said a few days back, home is where the projects are.

Expect the Unexpected

Regents and Religion

Across the world of Kirrac, all the peoples, no matter their race, are bound to, influenced by, and called to worship one or another of the Regents. These beings are the Urathear, the lords of the regents, a race of divine beings. These twelve immortal lords have immense supernatural power and enormous influence on the mortal world of Kirrac. The gods of Kirrac are real. They live above their bearers in huge palaces, have grand temples everywhere, and protect what is theirs with powerful strongholds. Their Templars patrol the streets of nearly every city, town, and village across the face of the world. Their champion’s crusade against one another and bring fealty to any who might doubt the right of the Regents. And though the Regents are rarely seen, each has a court of lesser angels and godlings roaming the world doing their bidding, inspiring their bearers, and making their presence terrifyingly real. I myself have fought in more than one of the nearly constant wars against the beare

Bathroom is Done

So my website went down and everything went to hell with my internet presence, but I did get the bathroom finished. I'm very happy with it.

Back Up - Still A Mess is back up and running again. Most of the images are missing from the posts. The social media connections aren't working. It's a big giant mess that I'm not looking forward to straightening out. But it's back up and seems to be free of ransomware, which is a big plus. Also, some lessons have been learned about how WordPress does it's back-ups and, as a result, some things on the backend have been changed. Some new plugins are being used. Some things are being managed differently offline. But none of that really matters to anyone but me. Lets get back to putting up content.  


a map of the planet Kirrac presented by Jovan Dorr In my attempt to find more information about Jovan Dorr and his adventures beneath the dual suns and many moons on the distant world of Kirrac, I took to looking through a stack of papers that perhaps I had no right to disturb. And though I will offer my most heartfelt apologies for that transgression should I ever again get the opportunity to correspond with that great man, I have found among those papers a priceless treasure. Tucked in the fold of one journal I found a partial map of Kirrac, hand drawn, no doubt by Jovan Dorr himself. I do not think he would take exception to me saying so, but he is no cartographer. I have taken the liberty of copying his sketch and cleaning it up on my computer. While it lacks much in terms of detail, it is doubtless a useful guide to capturing the distances involved in those stories we have been made privy too. The labels too are in his own hand and while we have yet to be told of many of these pla

Crime & Punishment Cast

[caption id="attachment_5536" align="alignleft" width="200"] City Guard[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5551" align="alignleft" width="200"] Arohen[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5537" align="alignleft" width="200"] Cor Leonis[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5538" align="alignleft" width="200"] Doctor Greyscale[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5539" align="alignleft" width="200"] The Azure Ox[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5540" align="alignleft" width="200"] The Burgundy Bladesman[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5541" align="alignleft" width="200"] Witchshade[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5542" align="alignleft" width="200"] Jed Fire[/caption] [caption id="attachment_5543" align="alignleft" width="20

C&P: Outbreak

4 January 2009 So I was at City Hall and I’d finally gotten an actual license to fight crime. I was pumped! I thought I’d be directed straight to SERAPH, but they had something else for me first. There was an outbreak of some sort, the City Representative asked me to go and help the police contain it. It was show time. I went downstairs and a SERAPH tech gave me some cool gadgets to get me started. A multi-band communicator that’s no bigger than a hearing aid but seems to be almost infinitely configurable as to what communications you want to be able to hear. I think it’s going to take some time before I get this thing figured out. A Medicom patch, some sort of heart monitor or something that lets the central system track when you go into medical arrest and teleports you to the nearest hospital. So theoretically I won’t die on the street. Not sure I want to experience that particular treat. Because to need that means that I’ve done had my ass kicked. A PDA-sized GPS/map/compass to help

Floor is Down

I added the half-inch of subfloor to flush everything up... Then I put down the new TrafficMaster Allure Ultra vinyl plank flooring . It was almost as easy to put down as the documentation said, almost. I had no real problems with it, just some minor issues with it either not locking in place or locking in place when I didn't expect it too. But I figured out how to work with it pretty quickly. Once I got rolling it only took a couple hours to put the floor together. I'm rather happy with the results and I think it looks pretty good. Then I painted the trim up. I'll cut and hang that tomorrow after its had a chance to dry. We're moving right along.

C&P: A Visit to City Hall

3 January 2009 I got lost leaving the tailor. Hopped on the monorail not realizing that there were two loops through the city, the green line and the yellow line. I figured I’d save myself some walking by getting on the closest of the two stations in Steel Canyon. I figured wrong. Apparently the two loops use different stations and I was at the wrong one. I ended up taking the green line halfway around the city before I got off in Skyway City. Then I had to hike across town to get to the yellow line station. Which took me to Atlas Park, where I’d been trying to get for the last two hours. It was a learning experience. I’ve got to say, there are a lot of heroes using the monorail. Which was a bit of a surprise. I mean what with all the flying, super jumping, and super speed running that you see on the news, the train was kinda the last place I thought I’d run into costumed heroes. What I’m saying is that there had to be a half a dozen heroes on the train with me each time. I didn’t reco

C&P: Dressed for Success

2 January 2009 I filled out most of the Hero Registration forms on the bus. I still needed a name, a handle, an alias, whatever they call them. My thoughts were buzzing. Excitement. Anticipation. And now that I was on the way, just a touch of uncertainty. Sure, I’d been dreaming of this all my life. It was what I wanted. The propaganda sounded good. “An entire city and its beleaguered citizens are in desperate need of heroes.” I had the power. I had the talent. I had the heart. I was a hero. And like the paper said, “Paragon City was calling for me.” But I couldn’t help but wonder, could I measure up to the standards set by the great heroes of Paragon City’s golden age? Did I have the right stuff? SERAPH thought I did and they were the professionals, right. Things would be great. I could do this. I got off the bus and went straight to the Icon store. I’d been doing my hero thing in jeans, a hoodie, and a simple black plastic mask back in AA. That wasn’t going to cut it here in the big

C&P: Welcome

1 January 2009 Um… Hello. I’m Vandal Blast. I mean, that’s not really my name, or rather I wasn’t born Vandal Blast, but rather chose the name as my alias for fighting crime and heroing. My birth name isn’t important for the purposes of this project. I need to maintain a degree of anonymity to protect my family, my friends, and my privacy. Otherwise, I’ll never be able to go grab a burger without being swamped by folks with cats caught in trees, people needing help opening jars, and the insane criminal-types that wait in your apartment to kill you. Not that I live in an apartment… or do I? Anyway, this is my blog. I’ve recently moved to Paragon City to start my career in the city that is synonymous with super-powered heroes. Birthplace of Statesman. The center of the super-powered hero universe. I’m what they call a ‘blaster’ basically what that means is that I generate and propel from my body bolts of energy. But I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s back up a bit and start at the beginn

Crime & Punishment

I was looking among all my files for an old website I used to have up at (no link, because it doesn't exist any more) Crime & Punishment . I couldn't find what I was looking for, outside of a few image files, but the Internet Archive Wayback Machine came to my rescue. The archive didn't have the images, but I didn't need them, besides, those I found in my PC search. Turns out that I spent most of my time building graphics for that page. Not terribly surprising, given my track record. I only managed four posts on  Crime & Punishment before I lost interest, but I wanted to preserve the fiction I wrote by reproducing it here. The time was January 2009 and the idea was to write a fictional blog based in the world of the massively multi-player online roleplaying game of City of Heroes . The idea behind the blog was to start by chronicling the hero, Vandal Blast, as he arrived in the city to make a home and a name for himself. Then to add addi