Wednesday, August 29, 2018

In Particular


     Sometime around 2003 I went and did me an odd thing with a couple of friends; we started a comedy stunt troupe that - originally - focused on performing at Renaissance Faires around Northern California, and a fee odd places not too far of from.

     We we're originally part of another group that focused very specifically on the myth and lore of the Scottish Highlands, but the group had become the ego focus of its founder, and we were looking to do some real serious entertaining; both in flashy swordsmanship, but also in giving crowds a real thrill.

     Hence The Brotherhood of The Black Flag, and it's band of bar fly miscreants, was born. We were nearly an overnight smash in the Faire circuit around here, and soon enough we had us some young join-ups. Ian, here, was one such join up.

I started training with The Brotherhood of The Black Flag when I was 18. I'm always surprised when people would ask me how long have I been doing this. I would say I started at 18 and I'm now 30. I love doing shows and dressing like a pirate. Training other people to fight with a sword has always been something fun to me. I train with the cutlass, saber, and long sword. And the Scottish basket hilt and, of course, bull whips.   Fighting with Charlie I will have to say is very entertaining; you never know what kind of comment he will open with. The man will pull a joke out of anything and throw you off your focus until you end up laughing and having a good old time. Hint: the cartoon we have now; the man was truly picky about how I will kick his ass.

  I left The BBF a number of years ago to follow some other life pursuits, but I've returned this year and already performed a few shows, including as an addition to the new arm of the group, The Blag Flag Gang; a Western style reenactment group that has become the premiere Western reenactor group for Sacramento.

Based out of the Sacramento area, The Brotherhood of The Black Flag, and The Black Flag Gang, are available for nearly any social event; from festivals and parties to civic events and film. Each member trains relentlessly to bring fun and entertainment to any show we are doing.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Say It, Don't Eat It...


     Food allergies...

     It seems that back in the 1970's and 80's I was kind of unique in respect to food allergies. Actually, more to the point, I was the only one I knew who had to avoid food because of food allergies.

     You see, I was born allergic to both concentrated forms of dairy, and to chocolate. No, not intolerance, the autal full blown allergy; anaphylactic shock, and everything. Yes, as in it cold be fatal.

     Now a days, though, it seems like every other person I meet has some sort of food allergy. Peanuts, bananas, fruit in general (I know a guy.), shellfish, and the list seems to grow all the time. The funny part is, you ask any of us about our allergy and we'll tell you that, of course, ours makes sense; those others are kind of wacky.

     No, gluten people; you don't count. Most of you aren't eve really allergic. But avoid bread, if you feel you must; just means there's more for me. Of course, if cheese is life, than this is not only a strange concept, it's down right alien... otherworldly, perhaps beyond the realm f your own perception.

     Rachel is in a long committed love affair with the stuff. With the exception of one cheese, I imagine there's not a mel or reason that wouldn't be better served with a hubg of the stuff. I asked her to provide a little something about cheese for this cartoon, as I can't since it is THE MOO DEATH, but she started thinking on cheese and, well, I lost her. Finally, after much cheesy thought, she had the following to say:

My relationship with cheese is deep, pure and all encompassing.

I consider myself an equal opportunity cheese lover; I love all forms and incarnations of the stuff. Bougie-fancy cheese, nacho cheese, sheep cheese, bloomy cheese, cottage cheese, cream cheese, stinky cheese, American cheese, string cheese, soft cheese, sharp cheese, hard cheese, goat cheese, cheese curd, Velveeta, spray cheese, blue cheese.... I could go on, but the above has me already worked into a fine lather....

I don't remember always having this problem, this obsession and thirst for what is, essentially, curdled milk. In college, I designed letter-pressed a book in the shape of a mouse, where I could draw, taste and rank the cheeses I met in my life. Categories included, 'taste', 'consistency', 'meltability' and a star ranking system. It still hangs on my fridge.

Charlie and I get along just fine, but I know we will never be perfectly in synch, because the thing that brings me so much joy, will literally murder him. So, even though the conversation above is fictionalized, (Charlie: Truncated from a phone conversation.) it is not beyond the scope of imagination. How CAN you make spaghetti without the cheese? What even IS that anymore? Limp noodles, in sad, red water sauce.

So, I shall celebrate my cheese, and revel in it's salted, creamy, delectable glory. And I do hope, that one day Charlie will forgive me for consuming it en-masse in front of him every chance I get.

Except Swiss. Swiss can bugger right off.

     As for me, well, do I mind being tough as nails, able to throw the heavy things, heal from all the sicknesses quick just to be thwarted by a glass of milk and a cookie? Eh, maybe a little. But then Green Lantern can be felled by an eight year old wielding a canary yellow crayon, so maybe I'm not so bad off.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Ah, Push It...


     Kaye...

     Kaye is the kind of person that, if you've ever grown up in the kind of religious background I have, would be the epitome of a "dirty hippie child". That is, she's sexually liberal, verbose, outgoing, free thinking, and very much into giving you a piece of her mind... whether you knew you needed it, or not.

     She's also this bundle of warmth and giving and expression that, on the onset, can be a lot to handle until you get used to it. But, she's a hard working mom who has managed to keep a house despite her set backs and the ever challenging Silicon Valley economy.

     And yes, I like her a lot. She's funny, and assertive and full of funny lines like above that will probably cement her as a new regular in Stuff if she keeps dropping lines like this one. Which, by all indicators, seems to be a lot.

     Also, there are some damn fine Mexican joints in San Leandro, California; let me tell you what...