Snow day, busted car, and a new story

Snow can be so snoverrated

As I write this on Monday evening, there are 12 inches of snow on the ground in Eugene. We don’t get a lot of snow around here, and certainly not this much. When we get even a couple of inches, the area shuts down—so you can imagine what things have been like.

On the one hand, it’s been fun. Jodie, the kids, and I romped in the backyard this morning. We threw snowballs and built a snowbeing. We stuck rulers in the snow to measure how much snow we’d gotten—yup, bang on about a foot.

But then, after the kids came in, Jodie and I went to the driveway to deal with the, shall we say, snoverrated part of snow.

A massive tree limb had hit our car and shattered the rear and side rear windows.


Luckily, our little yellow submarine is the backup car, used by me or Jodie when one of us needs to go somewhere solo. Our main vehicle, a Subaru Outback, is fine (at least, it is as I write this on Monday evening). On the one hand the limb could have fallen more directly on the car, and taken out far more than the back window. On the other hand, the limb did smash the back corner of the car’s roof pretty hard, so the future of our little bananamobile all comes down to the auto insurance.

Wherever you are and whatever the weather’s like, you’re in my thoughts, and I hope you’ll keep us in yours too. The next couple of days may be pretty snowy and icy around here, but I’ll keep the ole fingers warm with some more typing.

Speaking of…

New story on the way

As you recall from last week’s email/post, my amazing Wanderers on Patreon put us over the finish line of $100 in ongoing monthly support. I had committed to writing a story as a bonus.

Well, the story is drafted and revised!

“The Things She Made” ties in with a bigger project I’m developing—but for this Rucksack Universe story, it’s Rucksack and an inventor friend dealing with the aftermath of a problem they barely stopped and still haven’t completely solved.

Patrons get the story first, and they’ll have exclusive 4-week early access. After that, the story will be available for sale as a standalone e-book. I’ll send along links once they’re ready for you.

If you want to be first to get “The Things She Made” (plus the latest beer review and other cool rewards), become a patron today.

To check out

Reading: Your Seven-Year-Old: Life in a Minor Key. There’s a year-by-year series of these books, all from the 70s/80s. They’re a little dated, but they have consistently come in handy as Jodie and I try to understand the minds, hearts, behaviors, and bodies of our wee Mighty Munchkins. This book has been especially helpful right now. I can finally understand that Connor is as deep in his head as his father, and THAT’S why he needs lots and lots of repeating and reminding about things. Hmmm. He’s 7. What’s my excuse?

Watching: Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown. Jodie and I felt like we were ready to resume watching this amazing show, after taking a hiatus in the aftermath of Bourdain’s death in June 2018. We picked up at season 8, episode 9, about the fascinating, down-to-earth, local-as-local-food-can-be Minas Gerais, Brazil. I’m enthralled, and glad to be back watching these adventures, despite the bittersweet tang that comes with them now.

Listening: NPR’s Life Kit Podcasts. To be fair, I’m about to start listening to these, but I’m most curious. I subscribed and loaded them all up the other night, after Jodie recommended them and after hearing spots for the free Life Kit podcasts on some other NPR (National Public Radio) podcasts I listen to. There are various series on finances, eating, and discussing difficult topics with your kids. I’m really looking forward to these.

Drinking: New beer review video is up! Patrons get first access, then the video will be out for the general public in a few weeks. In the meantime, here are some other beer reviews of what we’ve been drinking and recommend you snag a bottle or pint of too:

Crux Peach Saison Farmhouse Ale BEER REVIEW

Deschutes Black Butte Porter BEER REVIEW

Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar BEER REVIEW

Asking: If you could read a Rucksack Universe story set anywhere you wanted, where would you choose?