Sunday, November 21, 2010


Hi everyone,

Some very, very sad news today, I'm afraid. Our beloved cat, Zoe, passed away in our arms last night. Her health had been declining since she'd had emergency surgery and then a subsequent stroke. We think she may have had another stroke, but this time, didn't survive it.

She was a friendly cat, with a great sense of curiosity and a very regal bearing. To illustrate, here's a cell phone clip of her looking around a vet's office.

She'd started out as a feral cat, and as a result, always kept her claws at full sharpness, much to the chagrin of our couches. Although smaller than our other cat, Jelli, she let him know exactly who was the boss, and would not put up with his attempts to become alpha cat.

Dana wrote an elegant eulogy for Zoe. I'll quote it in full here:

Zoe passed away just before midnight on Saturday, 11/20/2010. I’ve taken care of her since October or November of 1997, and known her for two years prior to that, when she (pregnant) followed me in to Andy’s house in Greensboro, NC. When Andy needed a place to stay in Nov. ’97, he moved in with me and brought Zoe. When he left, I kept Zoe. Her full name is Zoetrope Sugarsmack Rose Kepple Pietromonaco. She had lost massive amounts of weight and fur, and had become very frail.

I’m so glad her last few moments went quickly. I’d just seen her 15 minutes before and she was fine, and then Paul passed by her and heard her wheezing between long pauses. I held her, then Paul held her, and then he passed her back to me. She took a breath, shuddered, and relaxed, stretching her paws out just a little, as if getting comfortable for a good sleep. And that was it. We said our goodbyes, had Jelly touch her paw and see her without life in my arms. We then woke Rose and told her Zoe was having to go away and she should say goodbye, because Zoe wouldn’t be coming back. Rose woke up just a little, enough to put her hand on Zoe and say goodbye. I doubt she’ll remember that moment, but perhaps, if there was any thought left, Zoe heard it, and maybe Rose will internalize it somewhere deep down to know she was able to say goodbye to her kitty.


I'll add one more story. This morning, I was looking for these pictures of Zoe:

Rose toddled in to my office, and when she saw them on my screen, she said, simply: "That's Zoe. She's my friend."

She will be greatly missed by all who knew her.


Cupcake at Halloween

(from the A cupcake a day keeps the doctor away department)

Hi everyone,

Here's a video of Rose enjoying a well deserved cupcake. She's dressed in her "fairy princess godmother" for Halloween. We're at the University Village shopping center, during their Halloween celebration. Every Halloween, the merchants sponsor a trick-or-treat for kids. It's fun, but it's crazy busy with kids running around in costumes. Hence, the cupcake break.

This was shot 31-Oct-2010.


Blowing Bubbles at Sunset Beach

(from the Always Blowing Bubbles department)

Hi everyone,

Here's Rose and her uncle Nick sharing a moment blowing bubbles at Sunset Beach, NC. This was shot on September 2nd, 2010.

Doesn't Rose look like she should be in an old Shirley Temple movie? I think it's the sailor hat. We found that at a gift shop at Sunset Beach and she loved it. If we'd had her tap shoes with us, I think we could have starting filming a musical!


Thursday, September 2, 2010

Surf's Up!!! Hurricane Earl passes by Sunset Beach, NC

(from the My Name Is (Hurricane) Earl department)

Hi everyone,

Shot some video this afternoon as Hurricane Earl passed by the coast. There was no danger here - Earl was far offshore - but the sea was definitely stirred up, and the surf was larger than usual.

UPDATE: It occurs to me that it might be useful to see what the normal surf looks like. Here's a video I took a few days ago on 30-Aug-2010.


Friday, August 27, 2010

The Ferryboat - A Ballet By Rose Pietromonaco

(from the Pirouette department)

Hi everyone,

This is a quick blog post of a video I found of Rose ballet dancing on the deck of a ferryboat. No deep meaning to it or anything - just some happy dancing. I think this was taken around May 31st or so:


Monday, June 28, 2010

Five reasons why GS/OS beats Vista and OS X

(from the Sherman - set the wayback machine to 1987 department)

Saw this blog post, and had to share it with everyone:

This made me smile - especially since I've still got an Apple IIgs around here somewhere...


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Fatal Frame IV: Mask of the Lunar Eclipse

(from the What? No US release? department)

Hi everyone,

As my family knows, I'm a huge fan of the Fatal Frame series of video games. I have all three of the games - Fatal Frame, Fatal Frame II: Crimson Butterfly and Fatal Frame III: The Tormented.

So - when I heard that a fourth game was coming out for the PS3, I was, as they say "stoked".

Then it was announced that the game was going to be Wii only.


Then I didn't hear anything about it for a long time.

Well, doing an unrelated search today, I found out what happened to it.

It turns out that the game has already been released in Japan. And - there are no plans for a U.S. version.

Major Bummer.

Here's the article that tells why there's no US release:

At least there's a Wikipedia page describing it:

Looks like I would have enjoyed it!


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Imogen Heap in concert - June 14, 2010 - Paramount Theater, Seattle, WA

(from the Hide and Seek department)

Hi everyone,

Just got out of the Imogen Heap concert at the Paramount in Seattle. Great show! She had three opening acts - two bands were comprised of members of her touring band, plus a group of people she'd auditioned especially in Seattle for an a cappella number.

So - here's the setlist:
  1. The Walk
  2. Swoon
  3. Come Here Boy
  4. Wait It Out
  5. First Train Home
  6. Little Bird
  7. The Fire/Canvas
  8. Breathe In (Frou Frou!)
  9. Earth
  10. (Seattle Improv)
  11. Bad Body Double
  12. Speeding Cars
  13. Let Go (Frou Frou again!)
  14. Just For Now
  15. Clear The Area
  16. Goodnight And Go
  17. Headlock
    (non-encore encore)
  18. Tidal
  19. The Moment I Said It
  20. Hide And Seek
She said that 12 of the songs were from an online poll, including #15, which was unique. Just For Now was a crowd sing-a-long, dividing the audience into three sections. Earth featured a Seattle a cappella group, Sintonia, that had formed just for the show, and were also the first opening act.

The other opening acts were Geese, who were the two violinists in her touring band + the drummer, and Ben Christophers, who was her guitarist. Imogen introduced each act. The whole opening sets took about an hour, give or take. (7:38 - 8:46). Imogen went on at 9:10 or so - ended at 11:30.

Seattle Improv is a song she wrote on the spot, based on audience suggestions.

Yes - she played a couple of Frou Frou songs, which I wasn't expecting.

She mentioned that one song was about her professor, and that she told that story one night - and was mortified to discover he was in the audience that night.

Started First Train Home by playing two wine glasses (w/lemon) wearing wrist microphones. Said that's the first sound you hear on Ellipse.

(Okay - I'm tired so I'm going to have to edit this post more tomorrow)


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Jay Berry's - Memorial Day Weekend 2010 - Saturday, May 29th

(from the It's always better with spaghetti department)

Hi everyone,

We had a family get together last Memorial Day weekend. At the end of the meal, Rose climbed up on Grandma's lap, and I shot the following video:

Yes - Granddaughters are cute!


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Rose Rides A Truck - April 17th, 2010

(from the Do The Puyallup department)

Hi everyone,

Here's another video upload from my new Vado pocket camcorder. It's Rose on a carnival ride at the Puyallup Spring Fair - riding for the first time by herself!

There would have been more, but my camera battery died. She had a great time, and only freaked out a little when I switched positions, and she couldn't see me. But - she wasn't scared of the ride at all.


Trip To Vashon Island - March 27, 2010

(from the Get Away To The Islands department)

Hi everyone,

Here's some videos from my new Vado pocket camcorder. This documents a trip we took in March to Vashon Island to visit the Farmer's Market and see the sights.

First, we rode the ferry from West Seattle:

Next, we looked around the Farmer's Market and found some wind chimes:

Then, we ran around the park next to the Market:

We had brunch at the Hardware Store, then we drove around the island, looking at stuff. We bought some local coffee, then ended up at a boat launch at Quartermaster Harbor:


Then, we caught the ferry and went home. What a fun day!!!


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

National Pancake Day!

(from the Maple Syrup For All! department)

Hi everyone,

Last night was National Pancake Day. IHOP was giving away a free stack of buttermilk pancakes to every customer to encourage everyone to donate to the Children's Miracle Network.

So - Rose & I went down to our local IHOP and got pancakes last night. She seemed to really like them - but was somewhat concerned about the size of the stack:

Cute, huh?

It was a crazy madhouse, but it was also fun. Let's hope they had some success last night and raised some much needed funds.

You can read more about it here:
IHOP National Pancake Day - February 23, 2010


Monday, February 1, 2010

Finally!!!! Ruby Gloom On DVD!!!!

(from the I Was Beginning To Wonder If It Would Ever Happen department)

Hi everyone,

As longtime readers of my blog might remember, way back in 2007, I wrote about an imminent release of Ruby Gloom on DVD in February 2008.

Well - I was only off by a year or so.

Two DVDs of Ruby Gloom are currently available from Grounded In Gloomsville and Misery Loves Company. These were released in March 2009.

There was a third title announced - Pet Population - but it appears to have been pulled at the last moment. Its original release date was June 2009.

I do have the two released discs, and they are great. 16:9 anamorphic widescreen, and Dolby Digital 5.1 mixes.

Each disc contains four episodes. The first disc - Grounded In Gloomsville - has the first four episodes in order. The second disc has a more random selection of 4 episodes.

If you liked Beetlejuice (animated), Powerpuff Girls, Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi, Pinky And The Brain, and/or Tim Burton movies, you'll dig these. The animated Beetlejuice is probably the closest match - Nelvana animated both Ruby Gloom and Beetlejuice.

Until this show gets released in the United States - whispers hint hint Nickelodeon - this is the best way to see them.

UPDATE 29-Feb-2012: Netflix has added all three seasons of Ruby Gloom to their streaming service. This is great news! However - you may still want to pick up the DVDs, since the Netflix versions are the 4x3 "square" format, and not the widescreen 16x9 of the DVDs. Also - the DVDs have 5.1 Dolby Digital audio, instead of the Netflix stereo.

UPDATE 04-Aug-2013: It looks like we're finally going to get a US DVD release of Ruby Gloom.  Right now, has 6 titles available for pre-order with a release date of September 10th.  There's not much details about the titles, but I'll link to them here:  Gloommates, Grounded in Gloomsville, Tooth Or Dare, I Heart Rock & Roll, Welcome to Gloomsville, Happiest Girl in the World.  Amazon is also listing Spanish editions of these six titles.

There aren't too many details on Amazon yet - just cover art and titles.  There may be more details at the distributor's website: Phase 4 Films


"Look on the bright side of the dark side"

Friday, January 22, 2010

Rose Meets The President

(from the Looking through my photo collection department)

Hi everyone,

I found a photo that one of my co-workers, Patty, took last year - probably around 20-Jan-2009. Cute, huh?


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Letterman weighs in on the Jay Leno/Conan O'Brien Tonight Show situation

(from the He Was There, Baby! department)

Hi everyone,

Here's David Letterman's take on the situation:

It's cool to hear David's take on the situation. He has a unique perspective on the whole thing, since he started at NBC and probably knows some of the players involved.

And - it wouldn't be Letterman if he didn't poke a little fun: