50For50

Posted by on Sep 30, 2018 in Brento News, Fitness Journey | 0 comments

The gist of this post is that the time has come to make a commitment to change. Chainging my diet and excercise habits as well as my habit of getting my fingers into too many projects. There are things I want as an artsit. I have to really find the maturity to manage those desires better than I have in the past and prioritize what is clearly more important. My primary focus has to be physical fitness, at least for the next year so that I can get that lost energy back. I’ve just gotten too heavy. I’ve been slowly trying to work back to my fighting weight for the last 4 years. I started at a whopping at 340 lbs and today weigh in at around 315lbs. I’ve inched in the right direction but that is not going to cut it. Not by a long shot. The time has come for a greater committement and more direct results to get me below 300lbs and back to something close to my higher energy levels weight of around 260 lbs. The really hard part is putting that exercise and diet ahead of my music and art projects which so ensnare my mind. Nevertheless, it ha to be done. Steps have been taken. The new diet is underay and the new training regime starts...

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A Perfect Dream

Posted by on Sep 20, 2018 in Brento News | 0 comments

Last night I had the most amazing dream that perfectly encapsulated my time working in IT and really a large portion of my life. Before I get into it I need to quantify it somewhat with the following: I almost never dream or really even think of my times past working for First Union – Wachovia – Wells Fargo. Forgive the hyphenation. To me it’s largely the same community and occupies the same address in my memory. Most nights in my dream state I’m either writing songs with Elvis Costello, making epic Spielberg – esque film works or communing with my father who passed on years ago. I don’t use term, “dead” because to me, in my inner most reality, he’s more alive and more a part of my psyche than ever. Strange I know, but I digress. In this dream I was putting the final touches on a shelf and a half of books I was planning to leave behind in an upper mezzanine of other shelf’s of books at the bank. It was Wells Fargo, but it really looked more like eChannels floors converted to a sort of library. Now on these shelves of mine were all manner of books in various stages of use. Some were Japanese manga series still in plastic. There was the very same Japanese language book for children to learn to read katakana which a tutor once got for me in Japan. Keiko I think it was. There were also books written in Spanish and English. There were also tapes and cd’s on the smaller shelf. One CD which I picked up and examined was a home produced album from my friends band, Borghal Rantipole. It lacked the front slip cover and someone had drawn 4 dudes faces staring up from the cd in black sharpie. Nearby on a table there was a table where someone had made a pleasant country scene with a farm, barns, horses, chickens and Sasquatch peering over a brown stained rail fence. In a moment it occurred to me that these shelves were memories I was consigning to the past as I move into a new chapter. Now, fully two years removed from the Information Technology field and back at night school training for what’s next (more on that another time) I really just never think of IT, at least consciously. On the whole I’m slightly ambivalent about it I supposed. At times my work there was both esteemed and at other times woefully taken for granted, but I suspect that’s most peoples experience at most jobs. I walked away with no hard feelings and mostly just thankful for gainful employment for so many years. I do, however still really miss the people. It was an eclectic community of diverse individuals whom I respected and valued as a formative part of my life. Some, I follow from...

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Vacation Blowing Rock September 2018

Posted by on Sep 10, 2018 in Brento News, Featured Slider, Our Pets | 0 comments

I’ve been through Blowing Rock on several occassions in my lifetime but never once stopped to visit the tourist attraction that gives the town it’s name, until our visit some 14 days ago. also for the first time in my life we took a beloeved pet along with us. It was fun to have Beauty in tow and the place was very dog and cat friendly. This time out we stayed in an extremely nice cabin called, “The Gray Fox.” Beauty for the most part seemed to really enjoy her time out of town with us. She always gets treated like a queen but this came with more adoration of random strangers which just took largely in stride. There are 3 or 4 other dogs at the Blowing Rock attraction with the exception of one little fella who really wanted to be close to her, if you know what I mean they are seemed well adjusted animals who enjoyed being out with their human families. The plan was to visit Tweetsie but by passing up an early arrival to go get coffee and breakfast, we found a huge line when we got bac kso we decided to go to the rock instead. I’m glad we did because that place is fantastic. Over a billion years in the making, I guess that it ought to be. I’ll take in my 360 camera next time and get an amazing shot of the observation deck which conveniently has a flat topped pole right in the center of it. These dudes wouldn’t stop climbing on it though so it keep me from getting any really great shots of it. I don’t think I even walked all the trails as Mom was getting tired and Nancee as well. They are moslty on this platformed walkways which put you above the tree tops. Very interested feeling. BTW, the weather had been calling for two days of rain and muggy weather. Instead, as shown in these photos the weather was absolutely briliant and not too...

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Live Shows End As New Business Launches

Posted by on May 16, 2018 in Brento Live, Brento News, Music | 0 comments

Because working to make rich bankers richer is a soulless, thankless endeavor, As well as for other reasons, I’ve decided to leave the Information technology field for good. Thankfully, I insured myself against this time when IT contract opportunities have become fewer and further between by launching my wife into the Nutrition store business over a decade ago. That business has absolutely flourished in the past 11.5 years. Even with enough income to essentially not HAVE to work a job, I’ve never been good with playing second bread winner and there’s always been the expectation between Nancee and I that I would personally pay most of the monthly bills apart from the store. After the end of my last contract in the summer of 2017, I began to think of leaving the field altogether to find something else to do. I had a small surgery that kept me out of work for a few months and the idea really grew on me. Even though on the whole I feel I was paid plenty for my work while in IT, the lack of job security and especially the political nature and utter lack of any loyalty whatsoever always bugged me. My favors for others and going over and beyond for managers and peers to my boss, never resulted in a single raise or position. I was placed under less skill people constantly based on nothing more than their ambition to manage others. Then before I knew it, I had 15 years of experience and was at my earnings ceiling. When I was beat out for a full time position by an attractive woman with 4 months experience to my 15 years experience, whom I’d witnessed screw up the job terribly. I knew something was amiss. They hired her at 3 pay levels beneath me and then the picture started to crystallize. It was time to leave. In March of 2018, I decided to help out one of our distributors who needed drivers. The money was rotten and the guy just had a horrible attitude toward employees. I did have my own agenda for doing it though and that was to see if I could swing the transition to a physical job. I was glad to see that my body withstood the initial shock just fine. 6 weeks of that was enough to prove to me that purely from a physical level, no job was too tough for me. I’ve still got the heart and drive at 48 to do hard labor when it’s needed Around this time, an acquaintance began to talk to me about getting into a sole proprietorship job doing what he’s been very successful with for the past 11 years. I was generally aware that his business was good, but only recently was made aware of how successful and lucrative it was. His earnings for this past...

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Spa Visit At Ballantyne

Posted by on Mar 12, 2018 in Brento News | 0 comments

So last night I left the first batch of images for my new satirical comic strip running. They turned out decent. Check the gallery of raw renders below. I didn’t quite get to designing the next scene before we had to head out on the trek to The Ballantyne Spa and my appointment with the only person allowed to touch my hair. Edwina.  Actually, I’m only half joking. I am very particular about who Trina my hair. The last time I was non challant about it, I got the hair around my ear kind of butchered.My appointment ended about the time Nancee’s massage was set to start. So I’ve an hour to kill prior to meeting up with her for dinner in the gallery restaurant. Once again on this trip the weather is very gloomy and this massive hotel seems to have very few people in it. It almost feels like I’ve stepped into a pocket dimension where I am the sole occupant. But for the smooth jazz playing from all the ceiling mounted speakers, it would feel quite creepy. I promised myself I’d work on the comic script while I wait on Nancee. I’d like to run these lines by the real Dave Watson from Liverpool England as he’s serving as my dialog coach on this one. Dave’s likeness is also used as the Captain Watson in the...

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Some People Really Should Lighten Up

Posted by on Mar 10, 2018 in Brento News | 0 comments

You know, I guess if I don’t get someone excited about my photography, I’m not trying hard enough. Anywho, I’m going to keep this one real generic. Today, I got to hang out in a cool room with a bunch of cool musicians and dancers and watch a talented friend of mine rehearse for a professional gig. It actually would have been a super cool experience sans the boss getting a little huffy about my shooting a video (though in fact I was not shooting video.) You know if you hold a phone a certain way, it looks like you are shooting a video regardless so, bummer. On the up side of things I was reminded of the song, “Brick House,” for the first time in a long, long time. We visited a few breweries to pass out some CD’s and look for potential gigs. Saw a cool trio with Buddha in their name getting largely ignored by a large crowd and instantly felt a kindship with them. It was literally drizzling rain on their expensive looking gear as the crowd was either too drunk or too disinterested otherwise to pay attention in the slightest. They did an original song while we were standing there to boot. Big Ups for that! Charlotte, was cold today, but we covered some ground before it started to drizzle. I also got to eat some pretty fly sushi with said friend and hangout at his place the rest of the day including a brief jam. It was nice to get out of my head and just get away. We watched a couple of my films, “Take That – The Director’s Cut,” & “Buddy Row.” I got his cute little dog, Squiggy to finally let me pet him. He’s usually real standoffish. I left early and came back late. Actually, this would have been a much cooler post if some other person hadn’t kind of killed the whole vibe by being really self agrandizing and obnoxious. It’s weird how crossing paths with a little bad mojo kind kind of throw your day off. It was one of those, It’s not what was said but how it was said kind of senarios. I just want to give the whole world a big old huge and say, “Be cool, Man. Just be cool!” Everyone needs to mind that golden rule. Hey, did I JUST write another new song? When I got back to my desk I setup a scene for an overnight render of several camera angles on a new comic strip, “Captain Watson, Actually,” I’ll be kicking off soon as a for fun project. It’s time to get back to writing. Buddy Row and Mother of Vampires are both screaming for a re-write. In closing, I got to wear one of my prototype T shirts out and that was cool in...

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