An end for some things and a beginning for others…

Well, many things have finished up here at Packy’s Place, and new things are starting.  I’ll go over the endings first.

The box office of Nutley Little Theatre right after Superstorm Sandy.  The person who took this picture says the base of the tree didn’t so much look like it had been blown over and more like Chuck Norris had roundhoused the trunk.

A Bad Year for Tomatoes closed, after losing our opening weekend to Superstorm Sandy.  In addition to the falling tree damage, we had blazing transformers burning up the utility pole in front, no power, and, in completely unrelated to Sandy bad luck, no heat.  We found out that when PSE&G had been out to do some work on the gas line in September, they had neglected to turn the gas back on.  Normally, this would have been an “Oops!  Sorry! We’ll send someone out right away to turn the ‘By law, this knob can only be turned by certified technicians’ knob!” but with power out over much of the state, turning on the gas for a business that only operates in the evenings wasn’t a high-priority for them.  However, we got power back after the first weekend, and we got the gas back for heat the day of our delayed opening night.  We did dress rehearsal with space heaters.  The performances themselves went well.  The sound design wasn’t particularly challenging: lots of doorbell sounds (which I foisted off on the cast by installing a real doorbell on the set for them to ring), a phone ring, some scene change music, and some pre-recorded dialogue that was supposed to be coming from a tape recorder on stage.  I hung some speakers over the spots where the tape recorder was being played and called it a day.

The sadder news is that Lily finally passed away.  She was getting weaker and weaker as October passed, and we knew she was going soon.  By the closing day of Tomatoes, we knew it was that weekend.  By the time Kay and I had to leave for the final performance, we didn’t know if she’d make it until we got home.  She didn’t.

We wanted to be with her when she died, but there was no way to bag out on the show.  As it was, we’d made her as comfortable as we could have, and we’re positive that she knew she was loved.  The next day, we took Lily upstate to my parents’ house to lay her to rest next to my cats Tiger (1981-2000), Kitty Galore (1990-2007) and Twinkletoes (1990-2008).  In the spring, we’re going to plant some flowers there.

RIP, Lily  (1997? – 2012)

So much for the endings.

Kay is busy planning out our Christmas episode for PacKay Productions, and she’s planning on introducing a whole lot of NEW in this next video.  First, this will be the first outing for our new HD video camera and tripod.  It will also be the first appearance of someone I’ve been working on for quite a long time.

Because we need him for the next video, Kay has taken over finishing off my rug monster. I’ve been home sick the past few days (something in my GI tract kept me close to a bathroom and a smidge feverish yesterday, today I’m keeping to bed to kill it for good), but Kay’s been pulling me down to the basement every few hours to show me things and have me make decisions about how certain elements work.

I swear–my wife is a genius.  And so, because of her genius, I’m able to introduce you to my new friend… Rudy Monster.


There’s still some work to be done on him, but he’s mostly there.  Since these photos were taken, Kay’s already affixed his eyebrow, and I’m debating whether I want to give him palm pads like I’d originally designed or leave his hands furry all over.  But this is close enough that I can show him and say “This is it.  This is the monster I’ve wanted to show you.”

And he’s a rabid Bruce Springsteen fan from Little Furry, NJ.  *sigh*  I don’t quite know how I wound up with a monster who’s really into The Boss (while I can take Springsteen or leave him), but, hey… sometimes new friends can throw you some surprises.