yeah i gave in. the Iphone app will allow me to post things with a quickness. like Audio! look for my first audio update, live from my car during lunch.

how could i resist that?


This will probably still exist for rare longform stuff. and i tweet on occasion. i also write now occasionally for southerngamer.net.

if you want some ditchell, you can find some.


hey guess what?

i got married on Friday.

No, Really. Seriously.


market forces

what i've been obsessed with lately:

Sirius XM

I'm playing the market. and right now I'm winning.

This will most likely change.

But for now- hell with you, market. this is a little payback for the tech bubble of '99. Eat it!

In other news... come to our damn show on March 28th at Bottletree. Please. It will be good. Or at least interesting to you. Daikaiju is crazy- samurai masks and surf music. You'll tell your grandkids about it.

It's bedtime. Or it's time to play peggle until I can't see straight. Can't remember which. 


Tonight I got a comment from one of my blogs.

The one with the pic of the guy toking from an N64 controller.

here's the comment:

Hey, Retard, why don't you learn the definition of a bong!!! That is def. not a bong, more of a pipe, maybe a bubbler

That's actually a valid comment. I will accept it on its face value. First, let me go back in time to SEPTEMBER 2007 WHEN I ACTUALLY WROTE THAT. And then I will say "Touche, sir. You are correct."

Yard clearing has reached an all time high. (what a segue!) The back jungle is no more. it is now an ivy farm next to a leaf pile. This is an substantive improvement over any point in my 3.5 years living here. By the power of Craftsman, my chainsaw strikes true. Let no small tree find solace, no privet find respite. Let my extension cord tether me to civilization as I wander in the gully of the land beyond the storage shed.

Enough. I miss this blogging. It's kind of passe now which sort of makes me like it even more.

Since I spend some time on the tweetdeck, let me condense this into a tweet.

"trees cut in yard. stoner finds blog 1.5 years too late. omg gotta go do laundry."


whatever happened to you?

I got a frantic call from a friend wondering if I was still alive since I haven't blogged in forever. Instead of calling him back (which I still plan on doing) I'll remind all 3 of you loyal readers that I am, indeed, alive. 

I guess there are reasons I haven't been blogging. There's bham.fm- which is probably a poor excuse. It's not like I'm cranking out posts on it all the time. But it's the act of being concerned with it that takes uhhh mind-time? sure, why not.  

There's also this girl I'm seeing. She told me I could never blog again. It's all her fault. NO. The girl is good. She's dragging me kicking and screaming into some nonhermetic existence and I thank her for it. It's weird having someone...concerned about me. Im adjusting, I think.

Also, a lot of my bloggish tendencies are now on twitter. If  you are into that, look me up. keyword search: ditchell. Man. do you remember that brief time in the late nineties when companies would actually say that in advertisements? "Find out more about McDonalds on AOL. Keyword search: Mickey D's". How weird is that, now?


So I'm busy. Sort of. Not busy in the sense of "I don't have time to blog" but more like "I could blog or I could go play Street Fighter IV and watch Lost."

Speaking of which... 



Cat integration fully complete. it only took 11 months. of course an hour after this, they were back to war. but during a sappy movie they... cuddled. it was surprising.


The new one

DSC_5130, originally uploaded by ditchell.

is pretty damn cute. Congrats, Mohsmom and Scanty. You make-a the good baby.


Cats in Kitchen.

DSC_4728, originally uploaded by ditchell.

These cats are plotting something. Notice my innovation in home furnishings- the kitchen couch. It's a big hit at parties. This was taken with my new lens in very low light, and I'm amazed at how bright I can take it without losing anything.

I know my bloggings have been weak lately. This will be corrected.


yet another blog to follow

it's not original.

but i think it will be fun.




DSC_3775, originally uploaded by ditchell.

The girl at work who gave me Maeby let me know that her birthday is December 28th. So here is her birthday portrait.

Maeby is sometimes a mean little cat who likes to bite and scratch for fun. But once you accept you're going to come out scathed, she's a blast. She and Koba get along pretty good- right now they're on my bed, sleeping. Waiting for me to go to bed so they can wake me up. They play fight pretty much every day until the old man gets tired of it and runs away. But all is well. It's boring just having one cat. And learning her little quirks is entertaining. My favorite thing about Maeby, and the thing that will probably kill me one day is that she loves to lay on steps. And if she sees you coming, stomping down the hall towards her, she doesn't move. You have to step over her. Cause that is HER step. How dare you even think of moving her? She has no fear of me or anyone else. It is VERY different from Koba.

I didn't do anything special for her birthday. I might devote a blog post to her, but come on, let's not take this cat thing too far.

In other news:


buy it. play it. I don't care who you are reading this, you'll enjoy it. They have a demo you can download if you don't believe me.



Worst things about Cincinnati:

1. The bitter, biting cold in my bones that only people who live in reasonable climates feel. Having John laugh at me because I was wearing 3 layers in his house (his frigid, frigid house) was not amusing.

2. "Let's not smoke in bars anymore" is not an unreasonable request. When it is 20 degrees outside, my opinion changes. No smoke in bars has also allowed more children to enjoy the healthy, uplifting bar environment. 

3.  All the good beer. Saturday was spent recovering from Friday. Drinking 6 high alcohol beers after 6 miller lites is a one way ticket to hangoveria. 

4. John lives in the damn burbs. I don't blame him. But its a drive.

5. HARD WATER. The only flaw in his house. I didn't really understand hard water. Now I do. It sucks. 

Best things about Cincinnati:

1. It's really not that far. 7 hours north.

2. Good beer. It is a double edged sword, that beer.

3. It's different. But not really. They still have sweet tea. And weird chili. 

4. United Dairy Farmers- Imagine a gas station that can make you the best milkshake you've ever tasted. And then imagine that gas station being every 200 yards in any direction. 

5. The best thing about Cincinnati is that it's right next to Newport, Kentucky. Cause that's where the Haufbrauhaus is. More later. I'm tired. 


Turner Gill - Speechless

go forward for the interview.

war eagle, coach. if i can't have leach, i can handle you.


Sad, really.

For some reason "Sad Guys on Trading Floors"


no longer makes me laugh. this makes me sad. 

but not on a trading floor. 



i now see where we stand, jesus. loud and clear.

this was a debacle. i'm not callnig for people's jobs on my little blog, but i'm also not going to be too upset if that's what happens next.



Dear Lord,

First of all let me apologize for liking that one Slayer album. I'm sorry. It's really good, though. And the Danzig phase...that's kinda over. I am _not_ going to apolgize for Zeppelin. 

Anyways, we haven't talked in a while. But I have a request. And I think it will benefit you as well as me. 

Please, dear God, let Auburn beat Alabama. I know we've had six in a row. I understand that children in first grade have no conception of Alabama winning the Iron Bowl. I know. 

But this is the year. This is their great comeback. Their return to prominence. All signs point to Saban making them a competent team for years and years. And this is the time when we need it most. All those Alabama flags, dusty from six years in the basement are flying. Shirts long since forgotten are being brought out. The fair weather fans are back. 

Now is the time, God. Now is the time for the reincarnation of Tre Smith. Now is the time for a stunning upset from a team that has looked completely hapless for most of the year. Now is the time for Tuscaloosa to feel that now familiar stinging reminder that Auburn owns them. 

Listen, if you don't want to come through, I guess I can live with that. It's been a good run...hell (sorry!) it's been a great run.  I just want 1 more year. I just want to ruin their dreams. Is that so wrong? I want to hear them crying and moaning. I want to hear some idiot call for Saban's job on Finebaum. 

It would be so sweet.

War Damn Eagle. 



remember when i promised to update twice a week? what happened to me?

1. i became the tech support/dork writing/troublemaker for bham.fm- its harder than it looks, I promise.

2. Sweeps. This month is ratings apocalypse at work. We're doing pretty good. Not great, but pretty good.

3. Warhammer. It's over. You know how I told you I'd get bored? I am. I wish I wasn't but I am. It lasted two months. I'll come back when they get their shit together...they don't have it together now, that's for sure.

4. Fleas. It took about 3 weeks worth of worrying/cleaning/dosing/bathing to eliminate fleas. I _think_ they are gone now? Who knows? I know I hate fleas more than anything. More than Hitler.

5. Beer. I get off work, and I want it.

6. Girls. I see one of these girls you speak of, and I understand that if I don't actively try to hang out with them, and they get mad at me. It's very strange to me- why is it not OK for me to just go home and play Gears of War 2 for 3 hours and not call you? Do you not understand that the Locust Horde is trying to take over a planet? Is that not something you care about?

7. Crime and Punishment. This book is a bitch, but I like it. I read about 15 pages a night on it. I used to read like a fiend- not anymore. And that's OK with me.

8. Leaves. They suck ass.

9. Desktop Tower Defense. CRACK COCAINE IN FLASH FORM. I've been trying to get this game out of my system for a year now. It will not dislodge.

That's enough. Now that I mentioned it, I'm going to play another round of DTD.


flea pills

so we have had a flea problem at the house. I tried several remedies, but tonight I gave the cats a pill I bought from the vet for 6 bucks each.

An hour later, its fleapocolypse in here. God bless vet biotechnology. Or whatever its called.

So far so good. I'd like to never see a flea again. That would be fantastic.

In other news, Whitney and I started a music website. check it out- bham.fm

we're too good for .com. that's so early 2000s.

Right now, it's pretty empty. But Whitney will write like a madwoman, and next thing you know there will be 100 stories on it. I'll take credit for her hard work and tell everyone that I'm really behind the site. She'll leave, start bham.am and destroy me.

or it will be a nice place to read about music in birmingham. I don't plan on being a posting fiend, but the special kind of nonsense reviews will show up there.

my first review will be of bloom. I just have to figure out how to explain how incredibly/stunningly/uniquely impressive it is. I made something with it the other night I desperately wanted to record so i could recreate it. I suppose that will make sense when you read the review. Which will be right after I write it.


My vote

My vote, originally uploaded by ditchell.

My parents reminded me that their two votes cancel mine out. I explained to them that for the first time in my adult life, I'm damn proud of my vote.


Go vote!

I am predicting Obama with 360 electoral votes. And I am doing so right here, so we can read it tomorrow and cry or laugh.



3 albums:

1. T.I. Paper Trail. I listen to this sort of thing so you don't have to. And I love it.

2. MIA- Kala. It attaches to your brain and does not let go.

3. The new TV on the Radio. How in the hell did this come out and I didn't notice? I LOVED the last one. I haven't heard the new one yet, but how could it possibly be bad? It can't. It's impossible.
Check out this one from their last album.

This year has seem crazy slow as far as music to me. What am I missing?


theres three stories and they are all mixed together

They came over the hill- and there were 20 of them. I'd never seen that many in the sparsely populated area. They had formed a Warband, and my explorations into a quiet part of the map were at an end.

Today was front yard lovin day. 5 bags of leaves and pinestraw all thanks to my mower (which has to be coerced into starting despite the sticker proudly saying "Guaranteed to start" on it.

There was four minutes left in the game when I noticed a lot of guys in blue shirts hanging out together, listening to music. We had set up a tv so people could watch the game, and there were about 30 people doing so. I also noticed the black shirted guys moving in behind the blue shirts. But only just barely. The 3 cops that appeared next to our tent had noticed as well.

They slaughtered me. Instantly. I respawned at the warcamp and saw that something bigger was going on. Our own warband was forming, and I joined up. Those Order assholes were going to pay.

The backyard remains in its leaf-full state. I did attempt to go to directv last week and was told unoffically which tree must go. It's not that big and the neighbor gave the OK to kill it since its on both of our property. I look forward to some chainsaw justice next weekend.

The next thing I know, literally 5 fights break out at once. I had never seen anything like it in my life. I immediately move out of the way as 4 guys push one through one of our tables. The tv shakes, so I hold it. My head is on a swivel- the guy who crashed into the table is getting mauled by four guys in black shirts. There's two fights near me and people are running away. 3 people stay fixed on the game. I contemplate putting the tv on the ground and getting out of there- but then I see that the cops are pulling out the mace.

The warband has a very vocal leader. He has a plan and we must follow it exactly. I imagine him to be a 15 year old kid who's yelling at his mom for one more hour playing the game in between detailing our strategies. I just go where he tells me and whack things with my sword. we quickly roll through the smaller objectives, and end up at the keep- a giant castle filled with those Order bastards that ganked me before.

I got mocked today for caring so much about my yard. I guess its tough to explain- but when the yard is cut it feels good. I can finally understand why my father was so obsessed with it. It is satisfying to look out across your land, and be happy with it. I am by no means OCD about cleaning things, but when you do it, and do it right, it does feel satisfying in a way that I've never understood until I got the house.

So there I was, holding a television, watching the cops douse the gangs in mace. And they didn't seem to care- at first. After about 20 seconds which seemed like an eternity, they all started running away from us. The cops strolled along behind them, not in a hurry, herding them out of the park. I was laughing at the poor bastards when I got my first whiff of mace. It is not a smell/taste I'd like to ever experience again. And I still can't believe how long it took for them to react to it- they must have really wanted to beat up those blue shirt people. I know I haven't worn a blue shirt since.

The seige of Stonetroll Keep was very fun and also very long. There's something to be said for about 80 people interacting together playing a game at the same time, with similar goals. We planted seige engines, they put a vat of oil over their door so we couldn't destroy it with dying almost instantly. Our ranged attackers had to kill the oil first. This left me useless. I do my business up close. Once the oil was taken care of, we battered the door open- and I saw my nemesii (c'mon, that has to be right?) staring at me.

But other priorites always get in the way with the house. The list of things to do grows and grows and grows. And the distractions from a video game to work always seem to creep into my time. I don't let myself focus on the house- maybe I should. I don't know.

So that's how I survived a Mexican gang fight. A week later, it seems less intense than it was at the time. But it was pretty damn crazy. I asked a cop afterwards if he'd ever seen anything like that. He replied "Yeah- on TV." Amen, cop.

The battle was bloody. I think I died 3 times. Luckily I was resurrected by a teammate. We actually didn't take the keep- but I killed at least 6 of the twenty that got me. Once I had a little goblin guy concerned with my health (literally), I was a wrecking ball tearing through their backlines. If you're wearing a robe and holding a stick and see me coming, then I hope you make peace with whatever weird thing you worship because I can assure you that yous gonna die. I logged off and realized that I needed to get away from the game for a while. I'll do some yard work.



Tycho for Penny Arcade sums up Warhammer pretty well in the middle of this post.

In other news, I was in the middle of a Mexican Gang War this past Saturday.


And I now know what mace smells/tastes like. (bad, of course).

I will discuss this with you when I am not supposed to be working.

I have a rekindled love of twitter. if you search for ditchell, you'll find me.



There's plenty to say but I'm too tired to say it all. 

I've been sick since Sunday. This is the first day I've felt close to normal.

I have played a ton of Warhammer. I love it. It loves me. I will probably speak of this again. My character in the game has a giant sword for an arm. Don't turn your back on him because he will totally stab you when you're not looking. I'm making a career out of that (in game only, I swear). 

I'm reading the new Neil Stephenson book Anathem. It is absolutely incredible. I will also speak of this again. If you're wondering who this is, go buy Cryptonomicon and thank me 1000 pages later. 

The leaves have begun their descent. The days of harvest, mulch, and complain are upon us. 

Due to my warhammer problem, I am typing to you from Windows XP, installed on my mac. This is both hilarious and sad to me. 

Work is actually kinda cool lately. November is looming as THE MONTH. The pressurized finale to my ascension to whatever it is I do. After November, I am going to make some big decisions about the future and such. 8 years at one place is a long time. I'll say that.  I'll also say that if the economy remains like this, I'll just be happy to have a job. 

I'm going to come out and say it, on the internet. I'm voting for Barack Obama. I don't agree with everything but he seems like the best option. This will be the first democrat I've voted for. My shameful presidential voting history- Perot, Nader, Bush (shudder).  I really hated Kerry and I was over Nader in '04. Ugh.

On that note, its half a shot of Nyquil and six hours of crazy dream sleep. And tomorrow writing scripts and Friday, glorious Friday, I don't have to work. I plan on forcing myself to go to the gym, and playing sweet delicious warhammer the rest of the time. 



ok. I have a confession.

I really, really want to play Warhammer.

I can tell you based on to my brief, sleep deprived, moments with Warcraft and City of Heroes this is what will happen:

1. I will drop off the face of the earth for no more than 1 month. Maybe 2.
2. I will get bored with it, and upset at being surrounded with losers who have nothing better to do with their time (and have better equipment than me)
3. I will cancel it, and vow to never play it again (until the expansion comes out, and I'll do this same thing again).

Despite knowing that this will happen- I still want to play the damn thing. The lure of these type games is strong for me.

So I guess I'll see you next month?

Oh and just wait til Champions Online comes out. Been nice knowing you...


No god no

It's coming. I can feel it.

The end of daylight savings time. It just makes me mad. No single thing makes me think I'm wasting my life in a windowless cave more than leaving work when it's dark. And now slowly, the days are getting shorter.

Part of the "remove crap from my house" initiative has begun. I removed all the lumbering hulks of dead computers from a closet- 5 towers in all. dead computers of Phil, John, my parents, and myself. Out of some sort of strange (for me) concern for others, I removed the hard drives from the stack and will find a way to properly smash them. Next up is the great book purge- If there's honestly no chance of me ever reading it again it will go. I remember when my friend Targus bought his first house- I was stunned at how empty it was. Now, I am jealous.


oh and in an unrelated event...

i purchased tuna flavored cat laxative today.

for reals.

what i nobody wants to say

ah hell, I'll say it.

I'm scared shitless about the economy. And its normally not something that I give much thought to. But the more I read the more I'm sure that the world just changed. And not in a good way. And while all this stuff has yet to trickle down to a mid market television station and a senior writer/producer at said station...its coming. We're owned by a group of bankers, who right now are sitting in a smoke-filled room with a map of all our stations. And they aren't happy.

Perhaps I'm overreacting. And there are actually plenty of jobs in my field. Elsewhere. And then I'll have to sell the house (not that anyone is buying houses). And then I'll have to move to a city where I don't know anyone. And then I'll have to....

Ugh. I need to stop reading and go back to playing video games.

The Gee Mail

It is no secret that gmail is the business. I am not going to write a blog telling you of its virtues. I have 2 close friends who are still using Yahoo. I'm shocked they aren't on AOL and Compuserve still as well. Askin' Jeeves, bustin' out Mosaic and using Pine for their email (yeah, I'm old)

Anyways, this is for my gmail brothers and sisters. And apparently its old news.

Click on settings, and then Labs.

There's 20 something features that you can "add on" to gmail. Including the one that drove me nuts- when i respond to a group email, it now defaults to "reply to all" instead of reply.

Very cool. Gmail is where its at, ya'll. I got 2 turntables and a microphone.


yeah so

So Auburn lost to LSU. Let's metaphor that up with the rest of the night:

We played great defense, but in the 2nd half still let the offense through. We tried our hardest to keep it close, but in the end, even with 3 timeouts, just couldn't move the ball down the field.

The better team won tonight.



Sinus headaches are here. It seems to coincide with fall and spring. I try not to offer your usual complaints here but damn this hurts.

I've been playing lots of Rock Band 2. It's not really a new game, its a glorified expansion pack. But that doesn't really bother me- there was nothing wrong with Rock Band 1. I've yet to try the drum trainer, but the next time I can not feel like my head is going to explode, I'll give it a try.

The most enjoyable songs so far:

Singing "Feel the Pain" by Dinosaur Jr
Guitar on "Hungry Like the Wolf" (really!)

The lows:
Every instrument on "So Watcha Want". Singing is fun, of course.

There is no other news. Spore/Rockband/Trivia/Head throbbing can't think/sleep. So it goes.



Oh dammit.

The trivia question was- put these in order from oldest to newest based on the year they won Best Picture.

Schindler's List
Driving Miss Daisy
Silence of the Lambs

I immediately wrote down the years they won. We discussed it for a while, and we agreed-

Driving Miss Daisy
Silence of the Lambs
Schindler's List

So I wrote this down on the card to turn in:

Driving Miss Daisy
Silence of the Lambs
Schindlers List

In my defense, I showed it to everyone at the table. But I still screwed up. And it cost us $25 bucks EACH. There's this pain in the pit of my stomach that won't go away. I'm completely disgusted with myself. I went to bed beating myself up over it, and it was the first thing I thought about this morning. I much prefer when I can direct my anger towards someone else. But not this time.



What Birmingham has to offer...

So I am all Iphoned up. An interesting application I've found is called Graffitio. Basically, it sees where you are and if someone has posted a message nearby, it shows up. For instance when I was downtown there were "walls" for Urban Standard, Nana Funks, and some other places. But there is also a generic "Birmingham" wall.

And that's what made me smile tonight.
Yesterday, some jackass wrote:

"Is this the best Birmingham has to offer?"

I assume he was referring to the fact that there were only a handful of messages on our wall.
Well someone, and if I met him or her I'd buy them a drink, said this:

"No. Birmingham can also offer you a swift punch in your face."



Spore Review: ?/10

I was going to write a hate letter to Spore. I've been waiting on Spore for about 3 years- the guy who made Sim City making a game that starts at the cellular level and ends up with you colonzing outer space? That's the kind of thing I'd get excited about.

But playing it for 8 hours yesterday did not make me joyous, and those kinds of game usually do.

You start out as a cell. And you basically play a fancy version of pac-man for 30 minutes.

Then you get to design your creature- which is one hell of a good time. And then you play this weird Warcraft but simple game where you can either dance and sing and make friends, or kill everything that moves. Guess what I did? (I did both, but you know which one I enjoyed).

THEN you do basically the same thing, but there's resource gathering. I did a healthy mix of killing and dancing, befriending some tribes and wiping other ones off the map.

THEN you play a very dumbed down version of Command & Conquer until you take over your planet. The highlights here are you get to design your buildings and vehicles (or choose from a ton of them prebuilt). I had a blast designing my AT-ST walker- complete with blaring propaganda horns (by then I had become a "religious" nation).

By this time, it's 9 at night and I was incredibly underwhelmed. The character/vehicle/building creator is fun. But everything else is just so simple and limiting. I'm going to go through it all again on the hard difficulty, but I imagine that's just going to make it more frustrating and even less fun. We shall see.

After a break, I fired it back up to get to last stage- Space. I only got about an hour in before I realized it was ridiculously late, but it was the most fun I'd had all day playing it. I'm not convinced that it will save the rest of the game but it might. I'm going to figure out how to upload a pic of my starship- cause that was fun as hell to make. (This link might work- it doesn't look near as good at that odd angle.)

Anyways, I'll be playing it tonight, picking up creatures with my UFO's tractor beam, and throwing them into the atmosphere. That's the kind of thing I'm into.