I Have a Cave Troll

I’ve decided that I have D.I.Y. Stigmata. Not “Do It Yourself” in the sense that I gouge holes in my hands and feet every Easter and run around shouting “Miracle! Miracle!” until I collapse from blood loss, but in the sense that any time I do anything even remotely handyman oriented I end up with bloody cuts gouged into my hands and fingers that I can’t remember inflicting! I mean if you tear a large strip of skin off the base of a fingernail you’d think you’d notice, right? Not carry on blissfully sawing or nailing until you notice the blood everywhere. But no! Not me!

So I figure these mysterious cuts have to be hardware engendered stigamata of some kind. I start doing some woodwork, and spontaneous bleeding wounds open up all over my hands. Probably that dratted gypsy curse again. Hmmm, I should probably write to Fortean Times about it or something.

Actually talking of Fortean Times there was a report I found particularly amusing in this month’s issue (that is to say the May issue, it takes a while to get out here). Well actually there were a few (like the archeologists in Fife who carefully excavated part of a ‘Viking settlement’ only to discover it was a 1940’s era sunken patio and the great deal of excitement over an ‘alien antenna’ deep under the south Atlantic that turned out to be a sponge) but this one was a real stand out. I quote…

In Colorado, Betty Parker spied on her neighbour, Gary Clowes for weeks, convinced he was conducting rituals. She saw people dressed in “robes of the devil” sacrifice animals and heard them utter unintelligible chants. Betty then pursuaded members of her church to break into the Clowes home with crosses, stakes and prayer books only to find a dramatic group rehearsing Shakespeare’s Julius Caeser. Unfazed, Betty still insists they were “the children of Satan”.

Well, I suppose they could have been a satanic dramatic group, but still πŸ˜€

Actually it reminds me of a similar story dating from the SRA panic in the UK some years back. A woman accused her neighbour of being a satanist after seeing “strange black robes” and an “inverted cross” through his window and hearing “strange occult music” coming from his house. These turned out to be (in order)…

  1. Ecclesiastical garments, her neighbour being the local vicar
  2. A kite hanging on a coat hook
  3. Holst’s Planets Suite

Honestly! πŸ™‚

Anyway what I’ve been doing handyman-wise is cutting up some sheets of particle board (I’d do my particle board/Particle Man gag here, except I think I did it the last time I mentioned particle board so now it’d just be old). This is in aim of two projects. The first is making a Labarat board – Labarat being a chess like game I’ve invented for my entirely fictional Zurvár language/culture (hey, do I give you grief about your weird hobbies? πŸ™‚ Anyway I’ve made the pieces, now I just need a board to play it on. I figure I’d better actually try a few games before publishing the rules on the Zurvár section of the site – you know, to make sure it actually works. Anyway more news on that when I get the board all painted up (which will take a while).

The second project is a display piece for my Lord of the Rings models. This was inspired by the quite remarkable model of Helms Deep (or more accurately the Hornburg – Helms Deep is the valley, the Hornburg is the fortress – just poke me with a stick if I’m boring you πŸ™‚ the guys at Games Workshop put together as a gaming table. I was planning to do them one better and build my own version that’s more accurate to the novels, but after much messing around with rulers, calculators and Karen Wynn Fonstad’s Atlas of Middle Earth (an excellent book for the Tolkien Fanatic in your life – although try and find an older edition before she went slightly nutty and started including all the stuff from the History of Middle Earth series) I realised that this would require a board at least twice as big as the one I had (not to mention the fact that storing it would be a nightmare). So I scaled my plans down to building part of the fortress, and then scaled them down further when I realised how much work even that would take. So now I’m just going to model the main gate and some of the battlements on a reasonably sized base which will provide a convenient place to stick what models I actually get around to finishing.

On that point I decided to splash out and buy myself another large model (after the one of Sauron Ryan got me for my birthday – which is assembled and undercoated but not painted yet). So I got a cave troll (with spear). He’s all built and looking not bad so far, although the painting is going to take a while. I’ve made a few customisations to him too – mainly because I have a habit of mixing up too much green stuff when filling gaps. So we’ll see how that turns out (not well probably πŸ™‚

I bought said troll on Thursday, which I took off work to go and pay for my plane tickets. Because I forgot that the banks don’t open until 10:00 these days (lazy so-and-so’s) I had an hour to kill over at Morley, so I got my hair cut. I got a somewhat different cut this time around (being sick of looking like some throwback to the sixties), a fairly short short back and sides. It doesn’t look good, but it doesn’t look any worse than usual either so I count that as a win. I may get it cut again before going to the UK, or I may just let it grow out. I haven’t decided yet πŸ™‚

Anyway I eventually got enough money from the bank to go and pay for my tickets, so my plane seat is booked! Scary stuff !

Ummm, was there anything else I was going to mention? Almost certainly. I suppose I could comment on the death of Ray Charles, which I was going to do when he actually died but didn’t have the energy. Ummmm, well it sucks that he’s dead, obviously. And the weird thing is I can’t get used to the idea that he is dead. He always seemed like such a remarkably alive person somehow – for him to be dead just seems ridiculous. Bah πŸ™

I guess I’ll sign off with some more songs that have been catching my attention lately, since I still haven’t fixed the music section. Let’s see…

  1. Ready to Wear – Felix da Housecat
  2. Hair – Lazaro’s Dog
  3. Take me to the Hospital – The Faint
  4. Nearer than Heaven – The Delays
  5. Wicked and Weird – Buck 69
  6. Lifting the Veil from the Braile – The Dissociatives
  7. Passing of Peace – Catalyst (Coolism Remix)
  8. I Love Total Destruction (Soldier in Love) – The Nectarine Number 9
  9. Mass Destruction – Faithless

OK, I’m done. Go and make your own entertainment!

PS: What? I missed international kissing day?! There was an international kissing day and I WASN’T INFORMED!?! (need I point out that all the preceding should be read in tone of extreme sarcasm? πŸ™‚

PPS: Kevin Sorbo?!?!? I’m sorry Mark but it’s definitely time for an intervention!

PPPS: I should obviously read Ali’s blog more often πŸ™‚

PPPPS: Get well soon Rebecca!

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