Demolishing A Bathroom

Thanks to a broken pressure assist toilet and leaking plumbing I got to remove a toilet and tear up flooring in preparation for putting tile down.  The toilet came out easily enough, just needing some silicone cut.  It’s currently stacked in the tub until I can get parts to rebuild the pressure assist tank.  The flooring, on the other hand, was a massive pain.  I had to cut a plank’s seam so that I could get enough leverage to break them apart since whoever installed them glued them together.  They came up easily enough once I got started, and the subfloor looks pretty good, no water damage visible.  Next up, surface prep for the tile we picked out yesterday…

OVO

We went out to Frisco to see Cirque Du Soleil’s newest production, OVO.  This was my first Cirque show, and I was not disappointed.  We had great seats, sitting in the second row mid-way out on stage right, and could see a lot more of the details of the performance than we would have had we been sitting further out.  We were directly under one of the trapeze swings, and wore a little chalk after their act was done.  The costumes and set design were incredible, a riot of color and shapes, mostly organic in keeping with the theme of the show.  And the music, oh the music.  Having a live band and a vocalist that took part in the show was great!  The clowns interacted with the audience quite a bit, including some people a few seats away from us.  It was a great time and I’ll be going back the next time a show comes through.

Gaelic Storm

Heather and I went down to The House of Blues Dallas to see Gaelic Storm tonight.  The show was, like last time, in the Cambridge Room, a smaller standing room only theater.  The venue suited the band perfectly, as they really do get involved with the crowd.  Lots of good contemporary Irish/Celtic music was played, copious amounts of booze were consumed, and much fun was had by all.  After the show was over the band stuck around to have pictures taken and sign things.  I got Patrick Murphy to sign my ticket stub, which was pretty cool, and it will be scanned and put in the gallery soon.

They really do put on a great live show, and if they’re coming through your part of the world you really should make time to go see them.

Brewing The Baltic Porter

I tried something a little different, thanks to the damp weather, and did my brewing in the garage instead of either the kitchen or back porch.  It was much easier having the room to work and being at least partly shielded from the elements.

The Northern Brewer kit was pretty easy to work with, though I’m not a fan of dry malt extract.  It’s just too much of a pain to dissolve.  But other than that it was a straightforward extract plus steeped grains brew.  I’m a little under on the original gravity, 1.072 versus 1.075, but that’s close enough.  The yeast’s been pitched and I’m just waiting for fermentation to kick off.  This one’s got a bit of aging to do once it’s in the secondary, so it won’t be in bottles until some time in late March.  Stay tuned for updates!

Starting The Stirred Starter

I’ve finally gotten to the point where I need to make a starter for a batch of beer, and since I’ve now got Erlenmeyer flasks and a stir plate, it’s the perfect time to try everything out.  I made up 1.7l of 1.040 unhopped wort, got the Wyeast pack poured in, and started the stir plate.  It’s been going for a couple hours now and is already bubbling.  I’m hoping I can grow up enough yeast to get a good fermentation of that Baltic Porter kit…

TRON: Legacy

Scratched another one off the list tonight, and in 3D no less.  I think it was a good sequel, staying mostly true to the original.  There were some great cameos and off-hand references to things from the original as well.  I’m truly pleased that they did not put in the sight gags that too many of the 3D films have.  It’s not like we don’t already know that we’re seeing a 3D film, what with the higher ticket price and glasses, so we don’t need you waving things in our faces.  But back on subject, it was a good film, and I’ve got no complaints.  The score was well matched to the scenes as well, and I just might have to pick the album up for some background coding music.

Go see it if you haven’t already!

True Grit

I went out to see the Coen brothers’ production of True Grit tonight and can honestly say that I enjoyed it immensely.  I’m displaying my cultural ignorance but I didn’t know that it was based on a book.  I thought that the John Wayne version was the original, but during the promotional tour for the movie Matt Damon mentioned that it was more true to the book.  I’ll admit that I didn’t want to go see it up until that point, but once that was clear I decided to give it a chance.  I’m glad I did.  Jeff Bridges was great, I loved his portrayal of Rooster Cogburn.  And Hailee Steinfeld did an amazing job as Mattie Ross.  Now I’ve got to add the book to my ever growing to-read stack!

Fort Worth Gun Show

Mike, Heather, and I went down to the Fort Worth Gun Show this morning, stopping at Ol’ South Pancake House for breakfast before venturing forth into the crowds.  The hall was extremely crowded and there were definitely bargains to be had.  I had a short shopping list, and was able to pick up everything on it.  I got an extended slide release for the .45, a Magpul B.A.D. Lever and an armorer’s wrench for the AR, and a new holster.  I also found a great deal on a Mosin-Nagant rifle for the collection.  Other than being covered in cosmoline it’s in great condition.  Even the rifling looks new!  All in all it was a very successful trip.