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Everything posted by Thoramel

  1. Hey! My small dog tries extra hard to be good. He's dumb as a rock, so it doesn't always work out. But he tries! Those parts of the job I can do from home have been getting done in a pretty efficient manner since I started this back in March. So more productive in terms of office stuff. But since most of my job has to take place outdoors, and all of that has been suspended for the time being, I'd say I'm overall way less productive. But hopefully we'll be back in the field here in about 3 weeks.
  2. Going to have to walk around and do some photographing myself later. Impressive garden you have there.
  3. It seems like there may be enough gardeners here to support an "I grew this" thread.
  4. I managed to get an awful lot of stuff done over the weekend. Most productive I've been hobby wise for a bit. First off is this female Crusader from Bones 4. I can't express how much I just absolutely love this miniature. Next up are a couple of more Renaissance skeletons. I'm almost out of these. I'm always a little sad when I'm out of skeletons to paint. So if anyone has any favorite skellies to recommend I'd love to hear about them. And here's the finished version of Howie, the dumbest conversion ever. Kind of phoned this one in even more than I normally do. Next up is The Frog Squad. I can't help but think that this guy... Is hunting these guys for food... Who in turn are looking to bag this guy for their supper... Circle of life and all that. But I guarantee they'll come together the first time one of the PC's winds up in their swamp. Also, you may be asking "Thoramel, why are there tree frogs standing about in the muck and armed with stuff typically found no where near their home trees?" To which I say "shhhh." And finally here's another heavily armed goblin to add to my army of goblin time travellers. We're up to 24 members of the horde now (and 6 musicians). Last time my group ran into these guys there were only 15 of them. I'm sure they'll be excited to see the group has grown.
  5. Possibly Chipmunks, Those suckers are mean straight from birth, loud as all heck, and I've seen one chase a cat up a tree with absolutely no fear. If their screeching and chittering were an actual language, it would likely be nothing but cursing.
  6. Just tapped an American Stout I brewed a few weeks ago. Chocolate, roasted malt, caramel are the flavors. VERY strong - stronger than expected due to better efficiency and attenuation than predicted when I wrote the recipe. Haven't brewed this style in years. Now I'm going to mix up my home brewing hobby with my miniature hobby. Cheers!
  7. My local museum had been putting a bunch of their collection online recently so I've been going through that. They've probably got a couple thousand pieces up at this point. https://www.columbusmuseum.org/collections/ I also enjoy the whole imaginary network of art subreddits. You can easily lose a couple hours looking through those. My favorite is imaginary starships: https://www.reddit.com/r/ImaginaryStarships/
  8. Wonderful, both the paint job and the sentiment.
  9. There, that sounds better. Oh, now you see, that's when the mean regulator face would come out and someone would get a stern talking to about the fines associated with interfering with wildlife.
  10. A few years ago my wife and I were thinking of doing a bicycle trip around the Netherlands. But life got in the way and we canceled it. But you're making me want to revisit that idea.
  11. And neither is actual Origins in October. I was starting to get worried this would be the case when the scheduled Origins Online preview that was supposed to happen last Friday never occurred. Then this week people on FB were saying that the individual who had been setting everything up and who had run the convention last year had resigned along with a bunch of other people. Then yesterday they cancelled both shows. And now I'm seeing rumors from some long time volunteers for the con that there is a skeleton crew left at GAMA and only three board members. I'm concerned that poor management is going to result in the end of Origins. Which will be quite disappointing. It's our home con, like literally just a few minutes bicycle ride from the house. Are those Piet Mondrian themed Bonbons on the left? That is awesome!
  12. It's salad season. Got my first good lettuce "harvest."
  13. That touching a baby bird will result in the mother abandoning it. Used to get that one all the time when I volunteered at a wildlife rehab clinic. Not true. You can just put them back up in the tree and the parents will happily lead it back to the nest no problem. Pretty much the same for all wildlife, leave it alone or at most put it back near its home (if you can find it), and it will manage itself. Also, the concept of the "Alpha Wolf." That's based on observations of wolves in zoos, where pack formation is quite different than in nature where it is typically a family unit. The "alpha" in nature is basically just mom and dad, not a result of some sort of dominance competition among members.
  14. Got a new (partial) roof replaced yesterday. And two hours after they finished up we had a line of severe thunderstorms move through the area. Everything holding up and no leaking. If you had told young Thoramel how happy he would be about this situation he probably would have just looked confused.
  15. Got a couple of quick jobs done last night. I found this Copplestone Heroine while looking for stuff to put in the box of good will. I totally forgot I had her. For a half hour paint job I'm pretty happy. And man, those jodhpurs! And finished these singing mice from the Left at the Bottom of the Garden kickstarter by Andrew Rae. My wife already swiped these for her Kingdom of Mousdom Extension Office (her work from home desk) where they have ended the war between the Mouslings and the fat plastic unicorn by giving them a concert apparently. And I got word that I'll be returning to field duties starting next month, although I'll still be doing my office work from home. So that will be my official end of social isolation (sort of, I'm not going to be reckless about getting back out into public just yet) which will mean the end of my social isolation painting thread. I figure I can get a few more done before then.
  16. Thoramel


    The more I see this painted up, the more I'm glad I got it. Wonderful job.
  17. Mostly, I'm a fan of modern technology. But there's definitely a few things... Everyone can now be an "expert" at everything. Politics, science, religion, race relations, law, you name it. You can go onto just about any site out there with a social media component and find someone willing to tell you that you're wrong about everything based solely on their five minute google search or some meme they saw. Unfortunately this appears to be spilling over into real life. I work for my state's EPA and every month or so I get somebody telling me, to my face, that my decades of experience and education are wrong because of some half baked conspiracy theory they found on the web. Or worse, accuses me of having some sort of "agenda" to exploit them (it's never clearly articulated what I'm going to do or why). I feel like the widespread access to information we all enjoy has lead to an explosion in people exhibiting Dunning-Kruger syndrome. But I'm not a psychologist, or nearly any other kind of expert when it comes to human behavior. So take that last bit with some skepticism. The loss of important skills. Earlier in the month for one of these questions I mentioned how none of my incoming interns can read a topo map or use a compass. But there's a bunch of other simple stuff going over to automation now due to technology. In my line of work species identification of flora and fauna is extremely important. I've met several consultants who use an app on their phone for this now, and often get the wrong results. They can't identify what they're looking at a lot of times and so they just rely on whatever their phone tells them, and that can lead to a lot of extra work down the line. I'm fairly certain that this pops up in other professions. But, once again, I'm only an expert at a narrow range of things, so look into that yourself. Like WhiteWulfe said... cellphone zombies. We had to let a guy go from our gaming group a few years back because while he was always there, he was never "there" if you get my meaning. Put it down already, it's rude and you're missing out on life. I could probably ramble on, but those seem to be the big ones for me.
  18. Depends on your definition of cool. Heart attack at 93 because you decided to mow the lawn in 100+ degree heat? Not so cool. Wrecking your motorcycle at 89? A little cooler. Hurt yourself while shooting groundhogs at 102 and then refusing to tell your family or the nurse who comes by your farm every day and then dying from the infection because "Infection hasn't killed me yet?" Okay, that one was pretty cool. And the funeral was full of people laughing about all the dumb stuff he got up to in his life. Hmm. Good question. Still no. I don't much care for credit and the stress of suddenly having a $30K loan I didn't need and the associated interest would probably shorten my life by a year anyways.
  19. I agree with everyone else. Those green guys with the red caps are fantastic!
  20. Nope, that's not nearly enough. Besides, I plan on dying at 103 in a hang gliding accident. Or something equally stupid for an old man to be doing. I'm only kind of joking here. The men in my family all live in to their 90's and above and more than a few of them died while enjoying something they should have given up on decades before. Looking forward to it!
  21. I don't take any responsibility for this conversion... Here's an actual WiP pic for a change. A close friend in my gaming group also plays in a 2e-ish Spelljammer game. His Spelljammer is crewed by an iron golem mechanic with cannons for hands. His name is Howie and he wanted me to convert something to match him. I asked how he does stuff like fix things or load his arm cannons if he doesn't have any hands and he responded with something like "don't mention that to my GM." So I called his GM, who is also in my gaming group, and asked him how he could let something like that slide. To which he replied with something like "yeah, I'm just waiting until it becomes a critical thing and then I'm going to call him out on it." Well, in the spirit of friendship I got them to modify Howie so that he has at least one hand. The player has declared he won't be sneaky anymore and the GM said he'd point out inconsistencies in the future before they become an issue. But, because I know the GM has plans on trying to destroy Howie in a future session, I agreed I'd make him a pile of golem pieces some time soon. Anyways, after that I'm never trying to modify Wizkids stuff again, the primer stuff is terrible and the material is next to impossible to cut through without power tools, or at least that's my opinion...
  22. Bit of both. My wife and I made a decision to get our degrees in our late twenties and we both pursued scientific fields. I had originally intended to get a PhD in a conservation or ecosystem research field. But I quickly found that those doors were closed to me since I took a non-traditional route to get my 2 undergrad degrees. That wasn't a drawback to every program and the Agriculture, Environmental and Development Economics department at OSU decided to fully fund my pursuit of a grad degree. Not necessarily the direction I was aiming for, but I'm good with math, and there are a lot of opportunities to do wetland research in the env econ world. So I was satisfied. The thing I didn't expect is just how petty academicians can be. After 2 years in that program I decided I'd rather go work in a regulatory capacity than do ivory tower research with a bunch of people I didn't like or much respect. So I completed the requirements for a Master's degree, discovered some new ways to determine how people value ecosystem services, and then started shopping myself around to regulatory agencies. Originally I got into my state's EPA using the data analysis skills I picked up from the econ program to track hazwaste shipments and disposals in my state. That was a satisfying few years, I uncovered and removed some serious human health threats and at one point got a daycare center illegally built on a hazardous waste disposal site (vapor intrusion for this location was high enough that adults shouldn't have been breathing the air for more than an hour, let alone babies) shut down. So lots to be happy with, but still not wetlands. Eventually, the surface water portion of our agency decided the lady doing the job I'm doing now wasn't up to the task and moved her somewhere better suited. That's when I was able to finally get into working in wetlands. It's not the research carer I had planned on. But I do get to do some small amount of research, and I get a lot of satisfaction knowing that my work lowers costs for water treatment in my state by around 4 to 6 million dollars a year and improves, at least in a small way, the health of my fellow citizens. I've even coauthored a couple of research papers with one of my former grad school advisers (only one of which has managed to get published so far). It's very similar to the path I chose, but circumstances being what they are, is also different in a bunch of ways. I'm happy with it though and will likely stay here for as long as my body will let me keep stomping around outdoors looking for bugs and such.
  23. Found some time late last night and today to do some hobbying. I managed to prime a bunch of stuff. And made some progress on a couple of projects. Stuffed mice. Frog Squad. And today I spent the morning barefoot, drinking coffee, weeding my garden, and taping up my tomatoes. My assistant wasn't very helpful and had to be grabbed out of a tree at one point. I have no idea why, but he wouldn't leave my kale alone. I also kegged a beer this afternoon. But no picture of that.
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