When I was reading back through my archives in preparation for Wil Wheaton versus Paul and Storm last week, I thought, more than once, "I really need to write more." Each time, though, my calendar grabbed focus and shouted at me like Jules in Pulp Fiction until I begged it to stop.
I miss writing every day, even though I'm grateful for all the other work I have had and continue to have that gets in between me and filling my stupid blog with stories about life, the universe, and everything. The truth is, I've been working on projects that I won't be able to talk about for months, so the majority of my life at the moment is Off The Record. Whatever I can talk about, I sort of do in mostly real-time on the Twitters and the G Plusses and the Tumblrs, which leaves me with nothing much to write about on my blog except crap like this.
But today, it is Sunday, and I have a bit of time to write. I don't know why, but I only needed to sleep for 5 hours last night, and I've been up since 6am. I have had a coffee, I'm eating some steel cut oats, and the rest of the house is asleep. I could read this stack of comics that's been piling up for two months, or I could settle into the couch with A Game Of Thrones (I'm 60% finished after reading until 1am)… but I feel that need to write that I hear real writers have, so here I am, writing about nothing so I can at least write about something.
Our trip to Portland and Seattle was amazing. Anne and I got to PDX a day early so we could go to Ground Kontrol and see some of our friends who live up there. Paul and Storm and Liz and Logan (and Ted and Carol and Alice) all came down a day early, as well, so we ended up having one hell of a goof off day before we had to work.
Our plan was to eat dinner at Deschutes before going to Ground Kontrol, but Deschutes was having their Abyss release party, and the wait for our large party was going to be a minimum of 90 minutes when we got there. I called Rogue, which is just a couple of blocks away, confirmed that they had room for us, and we went there instead. The food was pretty good, but the beers were just spectacular. I had the YSB, the Smoke (which won Gold at the Great American Beerfest for a very good reason) and samples of the Double Mocha Porter (ZOMG) and the Double Chocolate Stout (WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN ALL MY LIFE).
Yep, this is real. We sat in a room with a red neon sign that said WILLS ROOM.
Storm drank all the things, and we all staggered (some of us *cough*Storm*cough* more wobbly than others) to Ground Kontrol, where we played video games for about two hours.
This is the part where I'd try to write a narrative to recreate the awesome time we had, but the part of me that creatively needs to do that isn't responding at the moment, so here are a couple of pictures, instead:
Ground Kontrol to Major Us
I was a Robotron Hero, with Stars in my eyes.
I beat Storm at Joust, even though I was feeling a little… blurry.
But Storm came back and OBLITERATED me in Dig Dug, even though he was playing from the bottom of about six beers at the time.
I suck at Punch Out, but that's never stopped me from playing it.
I signed their TNG pinball machine, then played the hell out of it. I never ranked higher than Ensign, though. It was like the machine knew, or something.
All pictures taken with Vignette and © 2011 Wil Wheaton.
It was an incredibly fun night, and when I fell into bed around 1am, I slept the sleep of the mostly victorious.
The next day, we slept late and took our time getting going. We ate breakfast at Mother's, one of my favorite places to eat in PDX, before going back to our hotel to take a nap. Yes, that's exactly what happened, and it's how I know I'm getting older: I love to take naps. Normally, I wouldn't take a nap when I'm visiting a city I love, but I was tired and knew I had to perform that night, so I was responsible, which is another way I know I'm getting older.
The show at the Aladdin was fantastic. Local musical duo The Doubleclicks opened for us, and — just as Paul promised — they stole the show in 15 minutes. Here, listen for yourself and be amazed.
The Doubleclicks are my favorite. They're sisters, they play the ukulele and the cello, and they sing about nerd stuff like D&D, dinosaurs, WoW. They are just delightful people, too, and I can't wait to perform with them again.
The audience in Portland was, as always, great. I told stories about gaming and how much I love my wife before Paul and Storm joined me to provide music for my final two stories about playing T-ball when I was 6, and WILLIAM FUCKING SHATNER.
Anne and I took the train up to Seattle the next afternoon. It's a beautiful trip, and if you ever need to travel between the two cities, I highly recommend it.
Seattle was freezing cold (literally), raining and snowing when we got there. We dropped our stuff at our hotel and went to the Triple Door for soundcheck before the show. The Triple Door is fucking FANCY, man, and we sold that bitch out! Team Seattle turned out in force, and gave me many gifts of local craft beer to take home.
It was another great show, even though I think we went a little crazy with the Captain's Wife's Lament… but I blame John Roderick for bringing the Steamfunk groove back so many times. If you were there, I'm sure you understand (and I'm sorry.)
I told different stories than I told in Portland, including two things I've never done in public before (that was scary for me), but it seemed to go over better than I expected. After the show, we stayed out until 3am with everyone from the show. When I slept, I slept the horrible sleep of someone who is snoring because he's so tired so he keeps waking up his wife and she keeps waking him up so he'll stop snoring.
Our flight home on Friday was uneventful, exactly the way I like my flights to be. I finished reading Petrograd from Oni, (I highly recommend it), and then I fell back into A Game of Thrones until we landed.
Thank you to everyone who came to both our shows, and a very special thank you to The Doubleclicks, John Roderick, Molly Lewis, and Jason Finn for joining us.