S’Mores and Ambush

Now I don’t recommend taking apart your barbecue; it’s hot and dangerous, and there are almost no user-serviceable parts inside.

Still, if you can get it apart just enough to get access to some open flame with a skewer and a marshmallow, then you can treat some cute brunette to s’mores in the city. She’ll like that.



After a night of chocolate and ghost stories, we’re more than ready to spend a day in the park with some urchins.


We’ve seen the de Young Museum’s Chihuly exhibit already, but sharing it with kids is like seeing it through different eyes.

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Clark Kent called to say he’s not coming to this part of the exhibit.

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Next time we’re here, the Academy of Sciences will be open. That’ll be fun.

After the museum, we head out into the wild and dangerous park. I barely get fifty feet before I’m attacked by monkeys.

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Right about now, they’re wondering if the lake is just decorative, or if you’re allowed to play in it.

As it turns out, playing in the lake is encouraged.

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There are other boats about. The urchins tell us they’ve seen the folks in this boat before. They’re scurvy pirates all three, and not to be trusted.


They’re getting closer, so we dodge them, escaping under the stone bridge we saw earlier. As we emerge on the other side, though… Aaaaah!


With an evil grin, they hook onto our boat, using the kids’ energy for their own evil propulsive purpose. It’s a pretty good idea really.


And if pirates and monkeys weren’t enough, we find gigantic and dangerous creatures at every turn.

Yep, there are actually two animals in this picture.

Somehow we survive, making it back to the relative safety of our base camp.

Yes, one of the cats is doing headstands again.
No, I don’t know why.

Random assertion: It’s unclear how fire, chocolate, marshmallows and graham crackers found each other, but I’m glad they did.

Published in: on September 30, 2008 at 5:09 pm  Comments (1)  
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Day 88, 89, 90: Roadside Demon Machine

This is some else’s secret plan. They thought of this and built it before I even realized it was needed.


There’s a gasoline engine and a propane tank… but what’s it for?


Aha. “A machine for adding that hometown textured feel to crosswalks.” Those three rows of pressure-stampers are patiently stamping brick patterns into the new asphalt. Then they get painted.

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The part of the machine labeled “HOT” has a little skull hanging from it. Inside the tank, I’m picturing a pentagram with a demon sitting inside it, generating heat for the brick stamper. He’s got an orange vest and a hard hat, and he’s eating lunch. I won’t bother him.

One of the secret plans (SP157) involves artistic skill I don’t have. Specifically, I need to be able to draw some kids, a panda and a taco.

So I’m practicing drawing a lot of cartoon faces. The first hundred were ultra-creepy. Pandas aren’t supposed to be creepy.

After a while they stop looking like little cartoon corpses, but it’s harder work than I was expecting.

At Delessio, I pick up a few things to munch while I wrestle with the ink.

It’s handy to have the kitchen right there, but it’s going to take me a while to eat everything in it.

If you’re just drawing and writing, you really can do it anywhere. Don’t even need an internet connection. (In fact, being connected to the web slows down the process considerably.)

It’s a good chance to wander from one quiet desk to another, enjoying the city.



I stop by Union Square to see if Gene is there for a game of chess, but I’ve missed him again.


No matter how much time you spend here, you keep seeing new things. I hadn’t noticed this mosaic before. That skateboard will probably confuse archaeologists in a few thousand years.


One of my favorite desks in the city is still Citizen Cupcake.


Bet you don’t know where this is. I’ll have to bring my muse here if I can find it again. She likes surprises.

Random assertion: If you see a warning sign, and they’ve gone through the trouble of hanging a human skull next to it, you should probably read it.

Steganographic data: 1818/6.9

Published in: on August 16, 2008 at 9:41 am  Leave a Comment  
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Day 56: High Wires and a Good Trade

Dad and Chuck may be getting themselves involved in a really interesting computer project for the Mt. Wilson Observatory. They’ve asked me to help out as well, so look for pictures of a really big telescope soon.


The cats look like they suddenly fell asleep after a high-speed collision.

The wires above Muni trains are dangerous and carry extremely high voltages, which is why they’re high off the ground. Going anywhere near them is strictly forbidden, for very good reasons. If you did, though, it would look something like this:

First stop today is Tartine Bakery. Everyone who lives nearby knows where it is, if only from the line out the door.

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A lot of cute women running an excellent bakery and coffee shop. What’s not to like?

I need some information about operating systems for Dad and Chuck’s telescope project. Luckily, I’m having lunch with Ben today at Zazie. If anyone has (or can get) the information I need, it’s him.

…but good information always comes at a price. Luckily, I still have a chocolate chip cookie from yesterday’s shenanigans, so I trade it for what I need.


…and yep, his answers are just what I was looking for.

Later on, I’m meeting my muse high up in a cool old building downtown. We’ve got evening plans with Christine and Shannon involving something we’ll probably need earplugs for.
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Random assertion: Cookies can be traded for almost anything.

Steganographic data: 1866/4.2

Published in: on July 13, 2008 at 3:29 pm  Comments (1)  
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