As of right now, I haven't graded a single assignment, but I should have. Did my recycling (over $4) and banking; also dropped off and picked up some stuff from school. Went to an Earth Day event at the local library courtyard after leaving the new 3 Stooges movie. Watched television and read a little.
Ran errands with Mrs. TI7; later went to dinner.
Spent a good part of the day keeping tabs on our son who is storm chasing with other OU students in KS and OK during this scary series of storms rolling through the Plains States today. (No flying cows reported).
Last Saturday the Old Town Temecula Gunfighters gang I'm in hosted a challenge for Reality Rally.
Sponsored contestants in a challenge similar to Tough Mudder or something like that, were raising money based on the points they earned which would be reimbursed by donors.
They ran a marathon style race with challenges.
My gunfighters had sharp-shooting contests, horse roping challenges, tomohawk targeting, and they had to pan for gold and escape over a rope-bridge climbing challenge similar to Indiana Jones.
It was a lot of fun and then at the end, my outlaw gang would rob them of their treasure at gunpoint, since we were re-enacting living history and had to control the destination of very real gold we were using for the contestants to experience life in the late 1800's as real as it could get. I've lobbied for them having to take whiskey shots at the bar, too. Maybe next year.
At night, I hijacked a bachelorette party and took them from a Texas BBQ eating house down to the rodeo bar and dance hall, and put the girls on the mechanical bull (it's safe - I won a riding contest on that thing last year).
Anyway, we had 58 teams compete in the Reality Rally (led by celebrity team coaches from Survivor, The Apprentice, Amazing Race, The Biggest Loser, Miss California, etc.) - and that is twice as many as last year! This is only the 2nd anniversary of this event and it was huge with a large audience and multiple television channels turning out to report on it.
In a couple weeks we'll learn how much money we raised. This event benefits Michelle's Place, a Woman's Cancer Resource Center.
I'm very proud of the work we did. I had to show up for plenty of extra hours before the event to do the woodworking and assembly of the stages, the bridge, the targets for the shooting contests (we teach safe usage of real firearms, pistols and shotguns), and a lot of effort went into this. And keeping track of multiple teams (of 4) as they came in and competed to finish our challenges in record times, we were very busy very consistently. It was a lot of hard work.
This coming weekend will be much easier, and I'll just sit in PETCO Park and watch the Padres play the Phillies for 4 games. Then the week after that, I'm fighting the Civil War in a huge show up towards Los Angeles.
Recycling and hazardous waste drop-off. Earth Day celebration at the local water company (they built a nice center for classes, seminars, displays a few years back), where the high school I teach had their solar boat team showing it off. Headed to Dairy Queen for lunch and dessert, graded a fair amount of my work and planned the week's lessons, watched various sporting events. A busy day.
I "put on" an alumni run of people who ran at my high school, then went to a running clinic (almost had to give a talk!), then helped a buddy move, strapped on the feed back and here I am back at home.
Crossword and recycling seem to be standard Saturday faire. Got a couple CDs from Best Buy (not the closing-soon store), but STILL no new SW figures. :mad: Lunch out. Back home: lessons planned, most papers graded, watched some sports TV. To end the evening, met up with the Sci-Fi book club to talk about a member who's in for some serious medical stuff, and put together a sketch book of drawings and good wishes for him.
House arrest, er, I mean on call so unable to stray far from the abode. It means domestic chores time which is how the day was spent.
I fought 4 Civil War battles at Pierce College near, L.A.
I stormed the Rebel's entrenched positions in a full infantry charge and we took the field, arresting General Lee who surrendered what was left of his Army.
My Confederate "girlfriend" (my friend who's posed for my Abigail character on my official author website and my dance partner shot me! (probably for stepping on her feet with my clumsy toes when I'm so tired yet trying to dance anyway) but I didn't have permission to die! So I took that hill!
(yeah, I shot her back)
I fired 40 rounds in one battle. That's nothing if you're doing a World War scenerio but for Civil War, that's 40 rounds with a front loading black powder musket!
Anyway, I was killed in a couple other engagements (we let the South win half the time when we're doing scripted battles) and I got some great pictures and video footage. I haven't had time to upload anything yet at this time. Disassembling and cleaning out my weapons will take priority right now (that's a $750 rifle!) but at my webpage above, you can see pics and videos from the past, also including my gunfighter shows and 18th century naval battles (actually filmed while sailing out at sea off the coast of San Diego).
Anyway, the heat climbed into the 90's in the San Fernando Valley and we have to wear wool uniforms. So it was exhausting, but a lot better than I imagine it is in the east where the War was actually fought. The humidity would kill us western soldiers I'm sure.
I may go to Gettysburg next year, but a lot of the guys in my unit are talking about doing it as tourists, or only fighting one day. Not sure. There's a whole process we need to follow to transport our guns across the country, too.
Then after the battles, when we're exhausted, we have to break down the camp and put everything away neatly, formally retiring the flag in a military honors ceremony as well.
I am always cautious when driving nearly 3 hours to get back home after one of these weekends, as sometimes I have to pull over and sleep in my vehicle at some commercial parking lot or another.
Members of the audience ask why we do it. Of course for me it's to be part of a community that would be interested in my book once I'm published. However, it is so much fun, that I just can't quit.
To be sure it requires some athleticism and endurance - actually a lot, especially if we choreograph hand-to-hand combat and charge up a hill or something like that. And when I ride horses, it kills the inner thighs and the lower back, not to mention you might have a carbine rifle slung over your shoulder. (Yeah I have a rifle holder on my saddle, but if I also sling another carbine, and carry my six-gun, I have 3 loaded weapons versus only 2 - the pistol is part of the uniform and required for close range combat anyway - as it is in artillery because we have safety zones where the troops can't fire the cannons if there are cavalry or infantry within their caution zone lines).
Anyway, I just kept blasting until I ran out of ammunition (we pack our own and carry what we can - but I went through 40 rounds like nothing - usually between manuevering, you're not shooting for an hour straight or you might draw swords). But other times, you save your own ammo as otherwise you'll spend all your down-time in camp re-rolling cartridges. But I make a lot of my ammo at home while I'm watching TV or movies. I'm sitting there, so I get up and exercise and then when I'm tired from that, I make ammunition. Still, in battle, there's a limit as to how much I can physically carry and still maintain an authentic uniform. However, when I get to play as my novel character, I have 3 more hidden guns on me than I normally would, plus a knife. I could feel a bit like Boba Fett!
I seemed to be all over yesterday: recycling (this is officially my largest funds-collected year :thumbsup: ), up to the school to get some papers, went to the local Free Comic Book Day event, back to school for copying and collating the literary journal, grading galore, out for Chinese take-out dinner, a little reading, some sports on TV. I was pooped by the end, in a good way. :tired:
Drove an hour and a half to run in a half marathon (finished 11th out of 1300+ runners), had a 2.5 minute PR. Drove home, ate, then went to work.