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Kevin Standlee: Fandom Is My Way of Life
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Sunday, June 17th, 2012

Time Event
Bad Lizard!
We have a number of lizards living around Fernley House. They all appear to be Western Sagebrush lizards. One of them is noticeably bigger than the others, and Lisa named it "George." We like having them around the property because they eat bugs and are not themselves dangerous.

Yesterday morning, when I went into the house, I saw George in the middle of the living room carpet. We may like these lizards, but we don't want them in the house. "Bad George!" I said. He ran into the cables behind the computer desk.

I didn't think I could catch him with my bare hands, but figured if I could shoo him into an open box, I might be able to carry him back outside. When I moved to set a box where I thought I might corner him, he took off running across the living room and up the facing of the fireplace rock work. I carried the box with me and stepped up to try and dislodge George into the box. Instead, George lept off the rocks, bounced off my chest, and scurried away again. Fortunately, this time he was more or less cornered near the front door. I opened the door and used a broom to shoo him outside.

Before trying to deal with George, I tried taking a picture of him, but the zoom on my camera phone isn't good enough, I didn't have my real camera with me, and I couldn't possibly get close enough to take a good photo without zoom as George is much too skitterish.

Lisa and I think George might have gotten in through the front door while we were unloading the van Friday evening and were coming and going. Silly lizard. There's more lizard food outside and under the house than inside.

Also on the wildlife theme, we startled up one of the resident rabbits when we came back from Reno last night. The rabbits here are much smaller than those that live around Quarry Lakes in Fremont. I reckon there's not nearly as much forage for them here as in the Bay Area.

Current Mood: amused
Paint Win
On Saturday, Lisa and I went to Reno for lots of errands, the first and foremost of which was to pick up four gallons of "fireweed" tinted porch paint from the Sherwin-Williams store. The 30% discount offer on paint was still in force, as was the 15% offer on supplies, so we stocked up on everything Lisa said she thinks she'll need to finish the porch. For extra Win, the staff told us that this particular batch of paint was actually manufactured in Fernley, so we feel especially good about helping the local economy, buying our paint in Reno from a Fernley manufacturing plant. The only part of our money going out-of-area is the "corporate" share. Yay for us!

Mind you, we wouldn't have bought the paint if the test quart we bought hadn't also proven to be very good looking, easy to apply, and pretty much exactly what we wanted. It also helped a great deal that the S-W staff in Reno were friendly and helpful. We shop at the Fernley Lowe's a lot because it's the only game in town, and yes, it presumably helps the local economy as well, but the service there has been very uneven, so I'm just as happy getting a brand of paint with which I'm happy from a retailer who seems to actually want our business.

Current Mood: accomplished
More Shopping Win
As I wrote at the time, shopping last weekend was very disappointing. Things went much better this weekend. We found a couple of pairs of secondhand jeans at Goodwill and Savers for Lisa that will serve just fine for around-the-house wear. We then went looking for the Levi's store, but the one in Reno has gone out of business. In the same shopping center, however, there was a Lucky Brand Jeans store that, wonder of wonders, had jeans in Lisa's desired size and cut that were also not made in China. (Until now, we've not been able to find anything that met all of those criteria; everything was either wrong cut, wrong size, or Chinese made.) They weren't black, but the dark blue will be okay, and they said they'd have black in stock later this year as it's a seasonal thing. The sales clerk also didn't treat Lisa as some sort of oddity for not being a size 0 or 2 and for not wanting pre-torn jeans covered in rhinestones or something like that. I don't think we'll be clothes shopping at the mall shops again anytime soon. The only drawback is that the jeans Lisa found, which look good on her and fit well, are pricey. They cost more than twice what my work slacks cost, for instance. We got one pair and will keep an eye out for special offers or sales in the future.

We had lunch at the Manhattan Deli at the Atlantis — many Renovation members probably remember this restaurant — and did non-perishable grocery shopping at Grocery Outlet. (The electric ice chest is pending repairs that Lisa expects to make before we leave for Westercon.) Then it was over to the Nugget for the monthly Lightning Loot drawings (we didn't win) and dinner at the Oyster Bar, where the staff (particularly William, the water and bread server) once again remembered us. I even managed to mark a winning Keno ticket (for a net win of $6, but that's better than usual). The Lightning Loot drawing has a woman dressed as "Lady Luck," and we chatted with her before one of the drawings, telling her that we like costumes and such as part of our involvement with SF conventions. She said she liked SF/F too, and seemed disappointed that she hadn't heard about the World Science Fiction Convention having been right there in Reno last year.

So this weekend saw us spending a lot of money, but it was mostly for things we needed, and none of it seemed wasted. We got home pretty late, however, and I was beat by the time I got to bed sometime close to 1 AM.

Current Mood: accomplished
Lovely Day for a Drive
I got away from Fernley about Noon today, which made me feel less bad about making a lot of stops along the way. Although I hadn't brought my real camera, I took these photos from the camera phone. Those of you who have never been through this portion of the Sierra Nevada, particularly when the weather it as good as it was today, don't know what you're missing in the way of scenery.

Photos follow: Nothing really fancy; just a selection of what you get stopping along Interstate 80 in late springCollapse )

After taking these photos, I continued west, making my customary stop at Colfax (although not at Starbucks this time; it was too hot for coffee so I got water and soda from the grocery store there) and pushed on back to San Jose, arriving around 8 PM.

These long drives are hard, but it helps when so much of the scenery is as nice as this.

Current Mood: happy

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