Archive for the “Blogstuff” Category

It’s been one week since the drawing was announced on the blog, and Maxim and the crew over at have picked a winner in true video gamer form; they used a random number generator.

Personally, I’d have used some dice, but then again… I’ve got a lot of dice. Hmmm. Actually, remembering some of the gamers I’ve known, I don’t have a lot of dice. I only have one large tackle box full. I’ve known gamers with far more than that. Perhaps I should simply say that I have a wide variety of potential high rollers to choose from and leave it at that.

However they did it, your comments were counted, the names were entered, and the winner has been chosen.

Congratulations goes to the lucky winner, Ken R!

Ken R left the following winning comment on the original post;

I’m a long time reader of BBB but rarely comment. That said, I appreciate the serious thought given to whether or not to do something like this and appreciate him gving his readers a chance to win (and to bring a few others out from our lurker holes). :)

I would love to be able to go to my guild’s leadership with this as a present to thank them for the literal years of work that have gone into keeping the group active through multiple games and the comings and goings that will occur as real life intervenes in our gaming time together.

I’m a member of guild named Esquire on Mannoroth. While the guild name hasn’t always been the same, the group has played together in Everquest, Dark Ages of Camelot, and WoW throughout it’s lifespan with occasional dalliances in Star Wars Galaxies, Age of Conan, etc. This is a group of people committed to playing together and tackling content in everything we play as a guild and has cameraderie that simply can’t be beat. We have a website right now that no one uses because it’s a pain to manage and therefore gets updated rarely with our officers’ busy lives. Our Vent server is paid for out of the kindness of one officer’s heart, despite there being plenty around who would help.

Ken, I’m emailing you as we speak to get you all set up with Maxim.

For those of you that had commented on the post to enter the drawing, Maxim would like to offer you a a special two (2) MONTHS of free premium hosting on Enjin’ Advanced plan, which comes with a 10 man mumble server.

To take advantage of that offer, all you need to do is create a website on, and then send Maxim an email at with the Subject “Big Bear butt commenter – your commenter name”.

In the body of your email, let Maxim know the details of the guild website account you created, and he’s told me that he’ll take it from there.

With that, I’m calling this drawing completed, and hopefully a success.

Good luck to everyone that entered, and especially a great good fortune to Ken, who I hope will enjoy the website and server with his friends for the entire year to come.

Good night!

Comments 12 Comments »

Last night, I put up a post that was meant to share a funny video Manny sent me the link to.

It was very funny.

I hit publish, checked it out, and the video wasn’t there. No video! I checked a few times, and the embed code simply didn’t work. I had to race out the door that second, so I had no recourse to fix it any other way, like by just adding a link. I had to do something, so I deleted the post and bailed.

Over the course of the day, the case of the mysterious vanishing post has caused all sorts of confusion for readers, for, with the genius of feedburner and feed readers everywhere, you are not allowed to have ever made a mistake when you hit publish. It goes out exactly as it was at that moment, even if you delete it 2 seconds later.

Isn’t that nice.

Now, a smart feed solution would be to also send out updates to posts, so if things, like life itself, ever happened to change, maybe people would have the chance to see that.

Ah well, I’m sure someone will make such an original innovation someday in the future, and we will all look back on today’s feeds with scorn, wondering how we ever accepted such a static situation.

In the meantime, I’ve had several very helpful folks email me to ask why my blog has been hijacked, or to let me know that my feed is infected with a virus, or etc etc, because the feed has a post on it, but lo and behold clicking on the link results in the post not being found, and various and sundry errors occuring.

Gotta love hindsight. Wish I woulda just let it be and fixed it later.

The latest email I received was a very nice one from Elynea, which came in as I was fighting with idiots in a Stonecore pug.

I know I got the email, because my new phone chirped at me, and it is but a moment’s swype to open and peruse the message.

I read Elynea’s message while fighting, and wanted to reply to her right away so she wouldn’t worry.

BUT… I didn’t want to stop fighting in the pug. They may have been idiots and acting like tools, but that’s no excuse for me to be rude.

My new phone offered me a solution! I can haz multitasking!

I selected reply, and then tapped the microphone on the keypad, activating voice chat.

I spoke my message into the phone, and it processed my words, then converted my speech into the actual email message!

What I said was, “I know, I deleted the post because it was broken. Sorry about that.”

The phone took that message, chomped on it and produced a typed version. I shall now share with you what my phone wanted to send Elynea;

“I know I deleted the post it was broken. Suck on it.”

Ummm…. hold on JUST a second before hitting send there, pardner. Run that one by me again?

Perhaps… just perhaps… this new technology ain’t exactly perfect yet.

You’ll be glad to know that no Elyneas were told to suck on anything in the course of this process.

My wife DID get a good laugh out of the look on my face, though.

Comments 18 Comments »

If you are a reader who visits through a cell phone, truly…

You have my most sincere apology for the heck I put you through on a regular basis.

Yes, I installed a smartphone-friendly plugin for the blog that was supposed to improve the appearance of the blog when viewed from a smartphone.

That doesn’t mean I’d ever actually visited the blog that way.

Tonight, we went ahead and both bought LG Optimus-V phones on the Virgin Mobile network. These are Android 2.2 phones, and our monthly plan has unlimited internet and text.

Obviously, the second thing I did was visit the blog. (First was to check my email).

The blog loaded up looking… interesting. No banner picture, just post titles.

I made the mistake of visiting my most recent Bearwall diatribe.

The page opened easily enough, and I scrolled down the text.

And scrolled. And scrolled.

And scrolled.

I’m serious. I’m really sorry. When I check my Bearwalls on a widescreen monitor at my desk, they seem annoyingly long but reasonable.

Trying to read them on a smartphone, they are an offense committed against both nature and God, and should be struck down with heavenly fire.

I promise, I will try… TRY to rein myself in henceforth, and drive myself to greater heights of brevity.

Good lord, after reading that massive textbomb, I’m lucky nobody ever visited one of my “Greet the Bear” events and just walked right up and punched me square in the mouth without saying a word.

Comments 35 Comments »

The Bear family is taking a vacation in a few months… to Chicago.

Cassie is pondering getting a new family cell phone. We’re seeing tons of reviews, but sometimes nothing beats expert advice… and you’re my favorite bunch of experts.

What we do, being a family of budget-conscious type folks, is use T-Mobiles’ pre-paid phone plans. Our minutes last for a year, there are no monthly charges, it works really well for us. The people we generally call are each other or close family members, or use them for emergencies. A $100 time card lasts a looooong time. We don’t text, either. :)

What Cassie is interested in are a few of the new internet-capable touchscreen phones T-Mobile has available. Their plan for pre-paid is that if you use the internet on the phone, it costs $1.49 for the 24 hours you used the internet. So, if you were on vacation for, say, a week, and you’d like to be able to do map searches, find places to eat, bus schedules, museam times, whatever, we’d only be out $10 or so and have full internet that whole week. On top of the cost of the phone, of course.

What makes it hard is seeing pictures of phones and reading descriptions of features and checking out the reviews written by people we don’t know. We’d like some actually knowledgeable people to give us their thoughts.

The two phones Cassie is liking at the moment are the Nokia 5230 Nuron, and the T-Mobile Comet with Android browser. They’re both in the $100 price range, which, again… we’re a family on a budget.

There is also a Samsung Gravity at the moment, which looks to me to be a really pretty phone.

The Nokia is an older phone touting built in GPS and the ability to save maps on the 2 gig internal memory. There is also mention that with a Nokia downloaded app, you could use it connected to your laptop for internet browsing on the go. The Comet is Android based, and has a capacitive touchscreen, and built in WiFi internet, which presumably means that if we were in areas with Wi-Fi hotspots, we wouldn’t have to use paid minutes to browse the internet.

I put it to you folks… any of you familiar with any of these three devices? I’d sure hate to buy a pig in a poke, and then find out we chose…. poorly.

Comments 23 Comments »

I just wanted to let you know I added something to the website, just for fun.

I’ve got an addon enabled now that let’s me update and track the various books I’m reading.

I’m fairly certain none of you have any interest from day to day in finding out what I’m reading, but the addon is pretty neat in that it lets me track by currently reading, intending to read and finished reading categories. It also keeps all of my entries, with start and finished dates, in a virtual library that anyone can search by visiting the blog.

I could even update the books when I’m done with ratings and mini-reviews, if I were really happy (or pissed at) a certain book.

If I use this diligently, then over time it’ll be pretty fun… for me.

For you, probably not so much. Although in a year from now, I’m sure searching through my reading habits, so long as I keep myself dead honest, should be worth a laugh or two.

For the WordPress bloggers who may agree with me that this sounds really neat, the one I’m using is Now Reading Reloaded

I’m not an Amazon Affiliate, so clicking through any of those books in the sidebar will NOT make me any money whatsoever. But I’m thinking that this might be one thing I wouldn’t mind going ahead and setting up as a paid affiliate… Cassie has clients that use the Affiliate program on their websites, and she assures me that if someone were to click through to Amazon from a book I listed, AND were to buy it, I might see a penny or two.

I think I can live with that kind of income and keep my street cred. Maybe.

I’ll think about it.

Comments 6 Comments »

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