That’s so GAY!

Well, it has been a long time since I have posted an update on here, so I thought that I would take this time to do that now.

First off, today the Supreme Court of the United States (or SCOTUS) ruled that DOMA (the Defense of Marriage Act) and Prop 8 were unconstitutional. This is awesome news if you are someone in the LGBT community. This is particularly important for me as there is someone who down the road I would like to marry and is also a male.
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Life Update April, 2013

It has yet again been a while since I updated. I thought that I would give an update on what has been going on in my life. The last time that I updated this site was back a little over 3 months ago when I posted asking James out. Three months later and I am glad that I did! I know that if you go back in the archive of this site and read previous posts about ex-boyfriends, you will see that I always think that they are “the one” and that it is going to last forever and all of this. This time, I think it is the real deal.

In the past few months, we have been super chill about things and we love each other very much. It isn’t an intense burn bright and fast then go out type of feeling this time. It built up slowly and is fairly intense right now and has stabilized there. We have not argued or had any fights about anything which has never happened to me in any relationship. We both want the same things from life. A house, kids, time with each other to travel, relax and just be happy.
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Failure

So today, I was out getting b-roll for this new School on the North Side and it hit me how I could do something really cool. It was all great and wonderful until I ran out of time. I was going to do this pan that would come over to a note that said “So, you want to go out already? ;)” but then I ran out of time, so I will be cute and do it on my blog.

James, will you go out with me already? Like official and everything?

More to follow depending on the answer.

50 Questions You’ve Never Been Asked

1. What’s your favorite candle scent?
Melon or Pine

2. What female celebrity do you wish was your sister?
Lucy Lui

3. What male celebrity do you wish was your brother?
Zack Efron

4. How old do you think you’ll be when you get married?
35

5. Do you know a hoarder?
Maybe…
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Blogging and Updates

Hey, look at that! I’m updating my blog again and it hasn’t been forever! Someone that I just recently pointed to my site for information that I posted previously thought it was cool that I had this site where I posted a lot of stuff about my life. I have to agree that I do like looking back on things that I have posted here to see how I was like and what I was thinking at the time.

It got me thinking of what started this all back in October, 2002. At the time, I had just met Beth while working at the theatre and she turned me on to LiveJournal. In fact, a lot of this blog is from back in the day when I was posting frequently on LiveJournal. I would like to get back to posting as frequently as I did back then.
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Blogging

Well. here I am again, updating my blog after a number of months of nothing. I really do want to update more often. If you look back in my history, I think that almost every post that I make after not blogging for a while commits to blogging again more regularly. Anyway…

I haven’t really talked about what it has been like at the new house. We have lived here for a little over a year now and I quite like it. It is conveniently located on the bus route for me to get to work if I need it and the same route goes up to Onalaska and the mall. It has come in handy a number of times since moving in.
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Life has a way…

Life has a way of balancing out the natural order of things. If you do something that is bad or dishonest or anything like that, life will eventually correct it for you. This is a lesson that I learned recently and am sad to say, I wish I hadn’t.

My friend Jay and I have been trying to talk to guys and actually find some happiness in our lives, specifically in the relationship department. Here in La Crosse, it is hard to find single gay men other than going down to the gay bars and generally, the guys down there are more likely to have all slept with each other than just be looking for something meaningful and long term, which is what we have been looking for.

After talking to a number of guys on gay social apps like Grindr and Hornet, we found quite a few guys whose mentality was “don’t talk to me unless you are a super model, otherwise you are wasting both of our time”. As you can imagine, Jay and I got tired of this attitude and decided to fuck with these people and others.

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Remember this!

When things in your life seem, almost too much to handle,
When 24 Hours in a day is not enough,
Remember the mayonnaise jar and 2 cups of coffee.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him.
When the class began, wordlessly, he picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls.

He then asked the students if the jar was full.
They agreed that it was.
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How to Download TV Shows and Movies

I get asked by friends and co-workers all the time about how I get my TV Shows and Movies online and how I have been able to cut the cord and get away from paying for a TV subscription. This post will talk about how I do it now, with links to all the software that I use to do it and the services that I use. I hope that people will find this helpful.

Back in the beginning, I just used the Pirate Bay to torrent all my TV shows and movies, until I got a couple of DMCA notifications. At that point, one of my co-workers at the time pointed me to the newsgroups. Newsgroups are hard for me to describe, but you can read about them on Wikipedia.

To get the full setup like I have, you should either have an old PC that you can install linux on, or have a Mac that you can install a linux app on. I use a couple of different applications to search for my TV shows and automatically download them into a folder that I sort into my media folder that my media center application, Plex, can scan and access.

On the linux box (or Mac), you will want to install SickBeard. SickBeard is a server application that you setup and access via a web browser to search for and add your TV shows that you want automatically downloaded after they air. I see that while looking for the link to download the software, that they also make a Windows version as well, so that makes it easy. After you install SickBeard and configure it with your shows, you will want to setup an NZB downloader. For me, on the same linux box as SickBeard, I installed SABnzbd which will also run as a server and look for the .nzb file that SickBeard found and start the download from the newsgroups.

Now, you need to get some form of newsgroup access. I use AstraWeb for my news provider as they have excellent retention and very low downtime. You can sign up for an account at astraweb.com and they also have discounted accounts if you do a quick Google search for AstraWeb discount. You can get it for $8 a month. Once you have an account with a news provider, you can setup SABnzbd to access your new account to get the files. SABnzbd automatically combines the multiple files back into a singe video file that you can watch.

If you want to do all the above manually without all the complicated server setup, you will still need to get an account with a provider like AstraWeb and then download a client like Unison to login to the newsgroups and download shows after searching for the latest episode on an NZB search engine like binsearch.info. If you search for a show this way, you will want to search for it with the syntax of “Show Name S01E01” for season 1, episode 1 of “Show Name” in this case. For example, if you wanted to download season 2, episode 4 of True Blood, you would search for “True Blood S02E04” and then look for the set of files that is about 350Mb for a standard definition hour long show and 2.5GB for a high definition hour long show. You will get the hang of what to look for the more you use the search engine. SickBeard does all of this for you and allows you to choose SD or HD versions of the shows that you input.

If you are using this manual method, you will also need an application that will combine the files back into the single media file after the download has completed. On the Mac, I use MacPAR deLuxe.

Once you have your media files downloaded, then what? Well, I have a folder called TV Shows that I make sub folders in for each show and season. For example, TV Shows / True Blood / Season 1. Then I name the episodes in the format of Show Name [SeasonxEpisode], so for the True Blood example, it would be titled “True Blood [2×04]”. It doesn’t really matter what format you want to organise your files, but they need to be consistent.

Once you have done that, go and download Plex. Plex is a free media server application that has front ends for Windows, Mac, AppleTV (when hacked), Roku, PlayStation 3, X-Box, iOS, Android and numerous other platforms. When you install Plex Media Server, it will ask where the media files are and what type of media they are (i.e. TV Shows, Movies, etc.). It will then scan your folder and download all the show and episode information, artwork and even show themes so when you browse them on the device of your choosing, you will have a more interesting presentation.

Now that I have gone over TV Shows, the process for movies for me is a little more straight forward. I just go to the Pirate Bay and search for what I’m looking for and find the best quality (based on the comments) of what I am looking for with the highest amount of seeders. Once I get the magnet link, I use Transmission on the Mac and uTorrent on the PC to download the movie. As soon as I am done downloading, I stop seeding and close my BitTorrent client so I am less likely to be hit with a DMCA notice.

Your mileage may vary on how well my setup works for you, but it has made keeping on top of my media and TV very easy and effortless after cutting the cord. Sure, there are some things that you can’t find online like local news. For that, I have rabbit ears to get over the air signals from my local stations. You may also find that less popular shows are also hard to find using the above method, but generally, you can find pretty much anything that you may be looking for.

New iPad!!!

I know that I haven’t updated this blog very much recently, but I have been so busy. I just got one of the new iPads yesterday and that is actually what I am using to update on right now! Hopefully I will get in the habit of updating this more often, but how many times have you “heard” me say that?!?!?!

Anyway, I will write a more in depth post soon, but I just wanted to post a quick update.