Monthly Archives: February 2009

The Fire Still Burns

We’d seen each other at a few Lake Area Furry Friends (LAFF) events and at Duckon, though I don’t think we had ever really talked much.

Then, in December I attended a Christmas cookie exchange party at wyldekyttin and crim_ferret‘s place. We chatted a bit at the party and had an amusing time during a game of “Truth or Dare” (nothing too exciting, you pervs! The clothes stayed on, thankyouverymuch). Interest was expressed by both parties, though not to each other.

Then came the LAFF New Years Eve party. Signals got crossed, unintended messages were sent, and neither of us knew where we stood. Finally, in February, e-mails were exchanged, and we set up a date: dinner and a movie. Dinner was a forgettable sandwich place. The movie was Mel Gibson’s Payback – a heck of a date movie, eh? After the movie, we went back to his place and stayed up very late talking. We talked about our lives, he showed me pictures and videos of himself and his friends. I left his place very late, but elated. What had started with a spark two months earlier became a fire.

February 27, 1999 was my first date with takaza. Ten years to the day, I can say that fire still burns brightly. I love you so much, Dan!

The Only Thing Constant Is Change

Pardon the crappy cellphone pictures.

These are pictures of the new, “improved” lobby of the Hyatt Regency Woodfield in Schaumburg, IL – the former home of Midwest FurFest. As you can see, the koi pond and the comfortable, multilevel seating is completely gone, replaced by an awkward island of chairs and sofas amid a sea of giant…pyramid…things.

Because of the small number of rooms and the lack of sufficient function space, there’s no way we would really ever be able to return the Hyatt, but this is just plain disappointing.


So as I mentioned, we got our new sofa last weekend. We had to give it a good workout, so we invited folks over to hang out both Saturday and Sunday, being graced by the presence of roho, genet, linnaeus, and steviemaxwell. We watched some TiVo, took part in the Midwest FurFest online staff meeting, and ordered pizza. It was a good, low-stress weekend.

It looks like we’re going to do a little shopping at Ikea tonight (yes, girtygrin, I agree with pretty much everything you said 🙂 We need to pick up an overhead light for the living room and also see if we can find a narrow-ish (12″ wide) end table, or something that can serve as such. genet will be joining us for dinner tomorrow, and Thursday night we’ll be doing laundry and packing because on Friday evening after work we fly out to Pittsburgh. We’re going to help a little at the Anthrocon storage locker, meet with the DLCC about plans for the coming year, and generally make sure everything is shaping up well as we plan for the coming Anthrocon. We’re flying back Sunday evening.

Not too much else to talk about today, though I did want to mention that I came across a great webcomic called Paradigm Shift, a Chicago-based police/paranormal comic. I’m extremely impressed with the artwork; the artist plainly is local and works from either photographs or by standing right at the locations. I especially enjoy stuff like the last panel on this page – I know that Citgo! It’s at the corner of Addison and Halsted, and I’ve watched the Chicago Pride parade while standing on that corner. And it’s fun to know that the first panel on this page is the view from the Chinatown El station. Now, if only I could figure out where that Ravenswood location is…

[Crossposted] A New Event!

Midwest FurFest is delighted to announce a new event, one designed to bring the local community together outside of the usual November convention and to celebrate the wonderful spirit of the local furry folks. Mark your calendars now for…

The First Annual Midwest FurFest Summer Picnic!

Where and when will you find this nifty picnic? Why, immediately following the June LAFF Softball game on June 20, 2009, at Prairie Springs Park at Lake Andrea, Pleasant Prairie, WI! There is an awesome picnic pavillion located right by the softball field, so the picnic will take place rain or shine. Plans are still in the works, but we hope to have some fun entertainment and of course some really great food. How great? How about a steak dinner? We’ll have steak, some sort of meat for non-beef types, and even some vegetarian options. Naturally, we’ll have a tasty dessert as well! The best part is that, like the softball game, the picnic will be free to everyone, courtesy of Midwest FurFest!

We’ll also have many members of the Midwest FurFest staff at the picnic (heck, you already see many of them at every softball game anyway!) and we’ll be happy to talk about the convention, answer any questions you might have, and help you make plans for the convention!

Even though it’s free, RSVP’s will be very important for this event to make sure that we have enough food for everyone. Please submit your RSVP by commenting on the post that Stevie has set up, making sure to say explicitly that you will be attending the picnic. Thanks, and we hope to see you there!

You Say It’s Your Birthday

And so my birthday came and went yesterday. A little anti-climactic after last year’s trip to Napa Valley, but then again it isn’t every year you turn forty. On the bright side I’m now 41 which means, um, it’ll be a prime year for me?

Anyway, takaza gave me my birthday gifts on Tuesday night. First was a book that I had come across and really enjoyed flipping through at the bookstore, The Making of a Chef by Michael Ruhlman. Tucked in among the pages was a card labeled “But wait, there’s more…” And so there was – a note informing me that I have been signed up for a 6-hour class on knife skills and butchering. This is awesome – while I can get by with knives in the kitchen, I feel a bit clunky with them sometimes. I’m excited that I’ll get to find out how to use them right.

Oh, and I really need to get my knives sharpened again (and I know where to go to get them done properly this time).

Last night we celebrated my birthday with dinner with friends. We had a lovely meal with roho, genet, linnaeus, daveqat, and jimcyl at Emmett’s Tavern in Palatine. I had a great selection of beers and the food was quite tasty. The downside is that I paid for those beers later when a nasty bit of reflux kicked in at about 2:30 AM this morning. I didn’t really get back to sleep after that and so I’ve been dragging badly all day. I may hit the grocery store after work, or I may go home and grab a nap. We’ll see how it goes, I guess.

Need to Trim

Arrgh! I hate to do this, but I’m afraid my Friends Page has gotten far too unwieldy. I’m afraid I’m going to have to trim a bit. As I have stated before. this isn’t about who I like or don’t like, but more about relevance. I’ve only got so much time to spend reading LiveJournal and I need to use that as best I can. As I state in my profile:
Livejournal calls the page of other users’ journals that you read your “Friends” page. To me, that’s something of a misnomer. I regard that as my “Journals of Interest” page. This is a place for people’s journals I find interesting, relevant, or those of close friends. If anyone has ever added me and wondered why I didn’t reciprocate, or wondered why I stopped watching their journal, I want to assure you that it isn’t because I don’t like you or don’t want to be your friend or even that I’m a stuck-up bastard. It merely means that I just don’t find your journal particularly relevant at the moment or within my interests. This may change at a later date – I do actually review the journals of everyone who has me as a friend on a frequent basis. One thing I can assure you is that it is never due to any personal grudge. I can’t think of anyone on Livejournal whose journal I wouldn’t read because I have something against them personally.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me by email.


It’s far too late for us to be awake on a work night. We just saw everyone from our merry band off a few minutes ago, having spent a truly enjoyable evening of good company, excellent food and drink, and some football game or something. The roster included hot spinach and artichoke dip (courtesy of linnaeus), loaded fries with bacon and cheese (courtesy of roho & genet), and tasty chips (courtesy of steviemaxwell and magicpaw). takaza and I made pork belly sandwiches, Chinese-style, mini-burgers with garlic-herb cheese and sautéed onions, and Dan made dessert: apple and chocolate pocket pies. The dead soldiers included Browning’s Bourbon Barrel Stout, Unibroue 15 Strong Pale Ale, Gouden Carolus Classic Belgian Strong Ale, and several bottles of Brother Thelonius Belgian Style Abbey Ale.

It was a very good night! And now, we’re off to bed. Zzzzzzzzz…