Feb 19 2015

I Walk with the Devil

I walk with the devil in my dreams. Shattered shoals and twisted windows and breezes of sulfur and pine recede across a pillow case warmed by daylight. These journeys do not frighten. Nightmares are for those who do not relish the trip. They are dreams, and they are often forgotten. Yet on occasion, the psyche’s grip is stronger, and a window into another world is left open, if only a crack. Continue reading

Jan 15 2015

The End Crusade

She dreamt the world was gone, and when she opened her eyes, it was so.

Enlightenment had become a myth, a gleaming memory in the stories of legend. Buried were the desires of the shuffling masses, the will to strive, to achieve a higher state of being. Smothered by a perpetual landslide of mediocrity, lives filled with purposeless consumption. When the spirit had been so crushed, were not those who wandered only a facet of the living dead? Continue reading

Jul 6 2014

A Year in Passing

My goal was maintenance of a blog for a year, full time.  In so doing, I wished to digitize many of the written elements of my gaming past as both reminiscence and inspiration for future endeavors.  That year has come and gone, swifter days with each setting sun as age foretells.  I find it hard to believe that this step in the journey is complete.  The task seemed insurmountable at the beginning, a looming monstrosity of time.  Though time can be a fickle beast, prioritizing can usually whip it into shape.  One day, one post, one word at a time.

I will continue to post on Sworded Tales, but my pace will be more motivational and lower on the list of priorities for now.  New challenges move into the limelight and new adventures await.  We shall see where these new roads lead, and whether the journeys favor the path of shadow or that of song.

Jun 29 2014

The Realm

Most folks do a fair job at celebrating their birthday.  Some make a big tadoo over the affair.  Others don’t even bother.  Here, we like to celebrate something called The Realm, short for the birthday realm.  I’m not sure when it began exactly.  Somewhere in my 20’s I believe.  What began as an effort to squeeze a few more days of goodness out of the celebration has taken on a life of its own.

And no one is safe from it. Continue reading

Jun 22 2014

Into the Wind

The terrain surrounding our home is flat.  Liquid flat.  One might even say superflat.  Such an environment is ideal for biking.  No hills is a wonderful thing, and we bike wherever and whenever we can.


We are also in an area with fickle weather patterns and a great deal of wind.  That combination creates the stunning propensity for the sensation of always riding into a headwind…

Always. And all ways. Continue reading

Jun 15 2014


Cleaning house.  An interesting turn of phrase that embodies getting one’s shit in order, tightening up the ranks and rectifying a long standing obstacle or wrestling one of the monkeys latched onto your back.  The exhilaration felt after a good house cleaning always seems to overshadow the perceived weight of the task which had loomed insurmountable.  Yet, we never seem to see the freedom which awaits around the next bend, more content to rationalize the status-quo of the burden.  There is always so much else that requires management on the ever scrolling list of priorities.  Right?

Bullshit. Continue reading

Jun 8 2014


“Nothing’s ever easy.”

One of my father’s favorite dadisms.  He had many, as most dads do, but this adage seemed to adhere to my life lessons and their application more than many others.  We shortened it to N.E.E. for more poignant usage, and on many occasions it has been expanded into “Nothing’s Ever Fucking Easy.”  Not as fatherly as the original, but you get the gist. Continue reading

Jun 1 2014


Everyone has it.  The extent of ownership, however, runs the gamut.  Some deal with the inability to resist the slightest temptation on a regular basis.  Some are able to hold out beyond what seems to be reasonably sane limits.  How is willpower generated though?  That’s the question I’ve been pondering of late.  Is it an innate gift possessed from birth?  Is it a learned behavior?  Is it a skill developed WillPower02through training as any other?  Likely some combination of these elements are the truth of it, but I often marvel at the varied responses to and perceptions of the concept of willpower.

Take pain for example.  A rational mind understands that pain is merely the nerve endings conveying to the brain that the activity being experienced is considered suboptimal for continued bodily health.  Once that rationale is in place, the concept of pain should take on a different tone.  That tone however is still vastly different across the spectrum of minds experiencing the pain.

Why? Continue reading

May 25 2014

Ruprecht the Monkey Boy

6a00d8341dbac353ef0133f369b473970bFormative characters.  You never know when one will cross your path.  They etch themselves into the memory and live there for the duration.  One such for me is Ruprecht the Monkey Boy as portrayed by Steve Martin in the film Dirty Rotten Scoundrels.

What was the magical component that etched Ruprecht into my mind?  I have no idea.  I suspect it was an amalgam of elements:  my age at the time, the hair, the hugging, the trident, the cork fork, the toileting, the excessive absurdity…so many priceless moments.  Memorable moments.  Scarring moments.

Ruprecht surfaces in dialogue every few weeks here in the house of Tales.  The warm, wicked nostalgia which accompanies him is a familiar caress that I would never replace.  Would another bit of remembered information serve me better?  Quite possibly.  A bit of poetry, or a snippet of quantum mechanics, or a story seed, or a game strategy.  All would be practically more applicable, but none would fill the void that would be left behind.

Ruprecht the Monkey Boy walks as a paragon in my mind.  Who are some of your formative characters?

May 18 2014


What an outstanding word.  Cattywampus.  Cat-tee-wam-pus.  I would work it into every sentence if I could, if it were cattywampus to do so.  That usage might have been a little cattywampus.

Words are potent.  Words carry power.  Words can transport you.  With so many goddamn words available in this astounding gift we call language, please strive to appreciate the nuances that each carries.  Realize the value of this craft which sets us apart from the animals.  Language.  Words.  Power.

Grammar’s nice.  It keeps us all moving in the same direction and prevents literary chaos.  But you know what?  I would choose a legion of unique chaotic wordslingers over a regime of mundane grammar Nazis any day.  Communicate, in whatever way best suits you, but stretch your mind when you do so, or you’ll bore the donkey shit out of everyone.

Continue reading