Friday, September 25, 2009

Opening the Earths Eye Retreat


Got back yesterday from the Retreat up in Sand Bay, WI. Let me just say, this has got to be one of the most difficult retreats anywhere. I mean, look where they had us staying! I mean really, how can anyone expect to relax and get into the retreat mood in a place like this?


But seriously, it was a truly wonderful time. The weather was perfect, low 70’s during the day, mid 50’s for the early morning and evenings. The sunrise over the bay was incredible, probably a good thing that morning bows were kept until after full sunrise to keep us all from staring at the sunrise rather then brining our attention to our bows, chanting, and meditation in the morning.


Saturday afternoon we had a coffee tasting of the four coffees I am preparing for sale at Compassion Fest on Sunday, October 4th. You will want to be there for everything that will be going on, plus you will want to buy a bag of coffee or two. Two regular coffees and two decafs, so there is something for everyone. Just for fun, I will have the ‘Professional’ reviews of the coffees, as well as the ‘Man on the Street’ reviews of them.


It really was a wonderful trip, and the first time for me to attend this retreat. As a result of hearing so many wonderful things about it, I was quite looking forward to go. As a bonus, it also served as my and Elaine’s first vacation together. I for one, can’t think of a better group to share the experience with.


Now back to roasting coffee for next weekend!!

Thursday, September 17, 2009


“Space……The Final Frontier, these are the voyages of the starship Enterprise, it’s continuing mission, to seek out new life and new civilizations, to boldly go where no one has gone before…” start Star Trek: The Next Generation theme music.

For those of you who have been fans of the Star Trek franchise, and in particular to those of you who loved ST:TNG, Wil Wheaton, the infamous Wesley Crusher, has been putting together a Star Trek book called Memories of the Future. For those of you who are not aware, Wil has done a good deal of voice acting on various animate shows, and most recently has had characters in the shows Criminal Minds “Paradise” and Leverage “The Two Live Crew Job” (not to mention a NUMB3RS episode a few years ago). Other than that, he is prolific blogger and writer. Well, a prolific blogger and becoming prolific on the writing front.

To that end, it seems Wil has picked up on a project he started years ago for the TV Squad blog and didn’t get a chance to finish due to their budget getting cut. Very soon now you will be able to pick up a copy of his first Star Trek book titled Memories of the Future: Volume One. Volumes one and two will cover the first season of the show (presumably, that is as far as he wrote/started his notes) with future volumes to follow the same general structure.

I read the reviews he did way back when, and let me tell you, they are hilarious. Here was Wil’s Christmas present to us in 2006, his review of ST:TNG’s “Justice.” This review had me cracking up for days. Here is a quick little snippet from the review.

After beaming down to the planet, the away team quickly learn three important facts:

  1. The planet's inhabitants, called the Edo, like to jog everywhere.
  2. They are all beautiful blond models, possibly descended from some sort of Maxim/FHM breeding program in the late 22nd century.
  3. The entire planet is clothed in about 6 yards of fabric.

The Edo's leaders jog up and meet the away team, greeting them in the traditional Edo manner: lingering glances and inappropriately long hugs. Troi says, "I'm sensing a lot of boners, Commander."

The general format for the reviews is:

Synopsis: A very snarky take on the episode, with many points that may not have been obvious, along with personal comments and observations.

Quotable Dialogue: Pretty obvious.

Obligatory Technobabble: Also obvious.

Behind the Scenes Memory: Here you can learn how it was for him on the sets. Interesting bits on things were shot, how things came together, etc. Also many a great comment on working with the other actors on the show and guests for the episodes. This is the serious and sincere section.

The Bottom Line: Here we find out where the parts that worked were discovered and carried on, and the many, many things that did not work and would (eventually) be left in the bin.

It is important to keep in mind just how silly much of the first two or three seasons were. Personally, when I go back and watch the old ones, I am amazed that the show managed to stay on-air past the first two seasons. I’m sure we are all glad that it did, as it finally began to find its footing in season three and became the Star Trek that we all know and love.

So if you are a ST:TNG fan, read that entire review for Justice to get a taste of what will be coming in the books.