Friday, March 30, 2007

Bass for sale

I've got an Ibanez AEB10E Acoustic-Electric Bass Guitar (black finish) with onboard tuner that I'd like to trade to someone for a six string electric of equivalent value or to sell.
Bass is in great shape, only one year old, hardly ever played. I bought it to add bass tracks to my solo project work and then set it aside; hasn't been played much since.
All electronics work perfectly, pickup/tuner powered by 9 volt battery.
List price is roughly $400 bucks ($350 at Guitar Center and about $300 on eBay)

I would rather trade it to someone for a decent electric guitar than sell it, as I've recently joined a new band as rhythm guitarist and am in need of a second guitar.

See the specs on this bass here.

Leave a comment if you're interested.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

New band, McKinley's Revenge

For those interested, I'll be stepping back from my traditional place at the keys to take up a tentative position as rhythm guitar for the new Celtic punk band McKinley's Revenge.
This marks my return to band life after a hiatus of several years, and as such, will be a very steep re-learning curve. Most of the other members of the band are joining right off the heels of the breakup of another band, and so are quite a bit more ready for the challenge of putting a new group together.
This also marks my return to the world of guitar playing; I haven't actively practiced my guitar in over a year, so the re-learning curve will be steepest in this department. Upon first strum in more than a year of my Epiphone SG P.O.S., I could tell it was going to be a long road; my brain knows what needs to happen in order to do what I need to do, but the hands have forgotten and need to be retaught.
Right now I'm really pissed that I had to sell my kickass Jackson with the Floyd Rose bridge two years ago to pay for medical bills, because it was by far a better instrument. I progressed more on the Jackson than on either of my two previous guitars. Oh well, I'll just have to save/sell some shit in order to pay for another.

At any rate, despite the challenges ahead, I'm excited as hell to be a part of McKinley's Revenge.

Check out the band's myspace page (link at the bottom of the graphic)

Click to view profile

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Big News from the Land of Wheaton

Wil Wheaton has announced on his blog that he will be a contributing writer for the second volume of STAR TREK: The Manga .
This is big news for us unabashed geeks and Trekkies (or Trekker if you prefer), and commemorates Wil's first foray into the realm of fiction writing.
On his blog, Wil states:
Initially, I was terrified at the prospect of creating and writing this story, but this voice in my head kept saying, "Dude, this would be so cool! Come on, man, let's do this!" Ultimately, I decided that if I'm going to truly call myself a Writer, and if I'm truly going to write that novel someday, I've got to tackle fiction sooner or later . . . and what better way to test myself than with characters and a universe that I already know?

Wil's previous works include Just a Geek and Dancing Barefoot, as well as his Geek in Review collumn. Wil has spoken about his interest in writing a fiction novel in the future.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Super Freakin Mario Bros.

Who doesn't love a little Super Mario Bros. now and then?

From having been a relatively active gamer in the past (up until the PS2 era, dunno if I just got bored or if other responsibilities interfered), I've always loved sitting down to an entertaining game, whether that game was a console based RPG like the Playstation era Final Fantasy games, or a racing game like Need for Speed, but my favorite game of all time still has to be the original Super Mario Bros. game for the old 8 bit NES console. Recently (read, in the past months) I've felt a hankering to play that old classic, so I began a search for a working NES and the old SMB/Duck Hunt cartridge.

I first tried thrift stores like Deseret Industries and Savers, but the only ones I'd find didn't function upon being tested (cheap motherfrackers, give broken shit to thrift stores!) and looked like they'd been put through hell in a koopa shell.
I tried eBay next. Buying electronics on eBay is a gamble (and not the kind I like to make, where I can't know and play the odds). You shop on eBay for electronics enough and you're bound to eventually buy some piece of shit that had been advertised as "great working condition" or "like new" only to find out later the reason for that seller's 100% feedback score is because he and his buddies built up a bunch of sock puppet accounts and conducted bogus "Buy It Now" sales...but I digress.

Long story short, at the time I was shopping the only NES that seemed to be in any good condition was a refurbished one that some joker wanted sixty bucks for (SIXTY FARKING DOLLARS FOR HELL'S SAKE, I can buy a refurb SNES with two controlelrs and a game or two for that!). There was another viable alternative available on ebay, something called Yobo, that's a top-loading console that accepts USA NES cartridges. They want something like $25 bucks (shipping included) for them; not what I'd exactly call a fantastic deal, but definitely something to keep in mind.
I thought I'd next try emulators downloadable for free to my laptop (can't beat free, after all). Many of the available NES emulators I'd found didn't work well with XP for one reason or another, or I'd have problems with the ROMs working properly.

I finally settled for the ZSNES SNES emulator, and downloaded the Super Mario All Stars ROM. Not exactly the same experience, but hey, you can't argue with free.
I already had a Saitek USB paddle (one of the ones modeled after the Playstation controller) that was about four or five years old that would work nicely. The cool thing about the ZSNES is I can input multiple controller designations, so if I want to switch button patterns to better suit the game I'm playing, I can do so with little hassle.
Anyways, back to Super Mario and Co.
I just love the sublime simplicity of Super Mario Bros. Easy enough to satisfy a breif session of game play, with enough little things to do to keep you ocupied for a longer one; no fancy controlls, just directions, select, start, A, B.

That's not to say that the other Mario games for the NES weren't great, though. Super Mario Bros 2 is like a mild acid trip, and hey, you can pick stuff up and fly in the third installment, but neither can beat the original.
After Super Mario World on the NES, I sort of lost interest in the series; too flashy, too campy, too...too...well, to be honest, I thought they were too childish.
I haven't tried the New Super Mario Bros. for the Nintendo D.S., so I'll reserve comment, but from what I hear, it combines the silliness of the newer Mario games with the classic feel of the old ones.

Now you wanna talk about wierd acid-trippyness, lets look at the Super Mario Bros. Movie...

Anyways, I'll leave you all with a funny cartoon I found on the Intertubes...

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Why Wil Wheaton Frackin' Rocks

From Wil Wheaton's kickass blog

When we were waiting to clear customs, a young girl came up to me and told me how much she loved my work. She asked me if I'd take a picture with her and her drill team, who were there for a competition or something.
I did my best to be patient and kind, but I told her that I was exhausted, and I looked and felt like hell. She was visibly disappointed, but said that she understood and apologized for bothering me.
"You know," Anne (who had been barfing her brains out the entire flight, and surely felt worse than me) said, "that girl was really excited to meet you, and even though you're exhausted, it only takes a minute to give her a good memory, or a lousy one."
This began a pattern of Anne being right, and me saying, "You're right."
I found the girl, who was with her team, and I told her that I was really sorry for blowing her off. I told her how exhausted I was, but I really appreciated her kind comments about my work, and if she was still interested, I'd be happy to take a picture with her and her team.
She blushed, her friends giggled, and I ended up posing for pictures with most of them individually, all of them as a team, and signing a few autographs. It ended up being really cool, and was a moment that profoundly changed the way I dealt with that "celebrity" thing that I was never really comfortable with: though I always thought "celebrity" was bullshit, it was one of the first times I realized that, even though I didn't think of myself in those terms, there were some people who did, and with that came a certain amount of responsibility.
It's . . . interesting . . . to me that I have that moment so clearly burned into my mind. I wonder if those girls even recall it, or if they even have those pictures. But I'm pretty sure that if I'd just gone to my hotel and taken a nap, they would recall that time I was the asshole, and I wouldn't recall it at all.
I know that there were lots of moments in my teenage years and early twenties when I really was the asshole. There were times when I was extremely selfish, immature, unhappy, and uncomfortable in my own skin. These were not good times to meet me, and though they are over a decade in the past, I occasionally recall some dick move I pulled somewhere, and I seriously want to find some way to apologize and make whatever dick thing I did right.
I know that I can't travel back in time to change those things I did that I regret, but as I've written before, I really like who I am now, and I have a wonderful, wonderful life. Like Picard said in
Tapestry, "There are many parts of my youth that I'm not proud of... there were loose threads . . . untidy parts of me that I would like to remove. But when I pulled on one of those threads . . . it had unraveled the tapestry of my life."

Wil, you frackin' rock, dude.
There's lots of reasons we geeks from and around your age group look up to you, and this is one of them. It takes a lot of guts to even turn the human perception inward and discover, acknowledge and eviscerate our own faults, but to do it in a public forum takes guts.
From having worked in the high-ticket security industry and from having met many celebrities through work, I can say with some small authority your humility and down-to-Earth nature are rare.
That's why you frackin' rock, Wil.
Thanks for bringing your insight and wisdom into the lives of lowly geeks like us.

Friday, March 9, 2007

Trent Wade, part 3

It's still very difficult for me to express in words my sorrow and grief at the passing of my friend. For now I'll publish the obituary his father put together, which was published in the Salt Lake Tribune this morning.

Trenton James Wade 7/1/1978 ~ 3/7/2007 Our free spirit, Trenton James Wade beloved son, brother, friend, companion and Mason left his family and friends suddenly March 7, 2007. Born July 1, 1978, in Salt Lake City to Kelly James Wade and Mona Johnson. Trenton had a very tender and sincere heart and gave love to all that he met unconditionally. He loved the outdoors and was an avid snow boarder and skater with all of his many life long friends, such as the Wasatch Stallions and the Subi crew, for over 20 years. Survived by his parents Kelly and Lynda Wade and Mona and Chris Johnson, sisters Tasia Edwards and Bridgette Burkman, brothers, Peter Johnson, Blake Edwards, Jered and Josh Burkman, grandmother, Ya-Ya Jean Lamproproulos, his nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, friends all of his Masonic brothers and his love Miristi Gee. Trent was a Member of Progress Lodge #22 F. & A.M and was serving as Senior Deacon. Trent became a Free Mason Oct. 25, 2003 and was a very active and dedicated member. He was a member of both the Scottish and York Rite, becoming a 32 Degree Mason on Nov. 20, 2004 and a Knight Templar in September 2006 of the Colorado River Fall Festival, Laughlin, Nevada. Your time with the craft was short here on earth and served well and I know our supreme Grand Master of the Universe will receive you well with open arms and welcome you with kind words. Well done thy good and faithful son. You will be missed companion sir Knight. As I loved you unconditionally with all my heart, your dad. Your message to all your brothers and be upheld. My beloved son, we will never forget the love and support you always expressed to all of us. We will all miss you deeply and will forever while here on earth. As your mother I have asked Kid Charlemagne and the Angels to look over you until we reunite again. I will forever have you in my heart, we all love you, your mother. My little Trentie, I love you so much. You were respected, admired and loved more than you'll ever know. You always stayed true to your heart, your sport, your friends and your life. You will be missed. "Looked at you last!" Love, your sister. A viewing will be held Sat., March 10, 2007 at the Cannon Mortuary, 2460 E. Bengal Blvd. (7600 S.) from 2-4:30 p.m. A Memorial "Celebration of His Life" will be held, Tues., March 13, 2007, 2 p.m. at the Masonic Temple, 650 E. South Temple. In lieu of flowers donations will be accepted by the America First Credit Union "The Trenton Wade Memorial Trust Fund" set up for support groups of grieving families in need. Memorials may be sent to

Thursday, March 8, 2007

Trent Wade, part 2

Trent Wade, Senior Deacon, Progress Lodge #22
(shown with Worshipful Master Kelly Wade, Father)
Viewing will be held Saturday, March 10th,
Cannon Mortuary, 2460 E Bengal Blvd Sandy, Utah map
((801) 942-6301), 2:00 - 4:30 PM
Masonic funeral services will be held
Tuesday, March 13th,
Salt Lake Masonic Temple,
650 E. South Temple, Salt Lake City, UT map
2:00 PM.
A reception will be held in the banquet room afterwards.

Trent Wade, RIP my friend.

Yesterday afternoon I received word that my very dear friend, Trent Wade, had committed suicide early that morning.
I knew he was going through a rough patch, and I tried so hard to be there for him whenever he needed an ear to chew (a little bit of background: his fiancee had been two-timing him for about a month, and he found out about it about two weeks ago). I just don't know what more I could have done.
I loved him like my own brother, and he was as good and kind a man as any who've walked this earth. He'd walk with you two miles if you asked him to go one, and he'd give you the shoes off his feet right after he gave you the shirt off his back. He was a good, moral and upright man who never missed an opportunity to perform service to his fellow beings.
He was one of the few real jazz junkies in my age group around here, and one of the ones could understand my deeply rooted interest in it, and many a late evening we passed listening to the jazz program on KUER (90.1 FM), discussing the intricacies of life.
He was my brother and my friend and now he's gone, by his own hand.
I've had friends die before, but never in this manner, and I'm finding it very hard to deal with the pain and the anger I'm feeling.
Anger at him for leaving, anger at myself for being so close and not seeing he was in trouble and not doing more to prevent this tragedy, anger at the situation and people that may have driven him to do what he did. Whatever good vibes/thoughts/prayers you can send for myself and for his family would be most appreciated.
I'll post an obit once one is printed.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

It's Official! Star Trek XI

Well, folks, it's official. Star Trek XI will begin filming later this year for a Christmas day 2008 release. According to the press release (see above link), J.J. Abrams is going to direct as well as produce the film, so we should be in for a real treat if any of his past successes give us aught with which to judge (Lost, MI:III, Alias, The Office) .

Star Trek XI will be a series re-boots as Batman Begins, and will feature Kirk, Spock and McCoy. Matt Damon is rumoured to have accepted the role of Kirk, which should be awesome. Damon is a fantastic, dynamic actor; I'd be delighted to see him in the Captain's chair of the Enterprise. The rumour mill has also generated Gary Sinise as Doctor Leonard McCoy. I think Sinise is a little old for the part, however, like Damon, is also a fantastic and dynamic actor who would bring nothing but positive traits to the roll of the transporter-hating doctor from Georgia.
Paramount has also released the official teaser poster for Star Trek XI:

Also, for those interested, it's rumoured that J.J. Abrams will be directing the screen adaptation/s of Stephen King's Dark Tower series.

For now, I'll leave you with this...because it's cool.