Tales of the Neighborhood

Just another Misadventureless Monday

Congrats to Carolyn, who won Trick or Treat by JL Merrow!

I just needed a little Misadventures break this week – tune in next week when we’ll be back to our regularly scheduled programming! :)

Meanwhile, check out the view from my chaise lounge when I look up from working on my laptop (click to embiggen for the full effect):

Here’s a lovely maple in front of the Linden Hills Library last weekend:

“See how nice and quiet it is without any naughty boys, Mom?!” -Mayhem

Condo Living
Tales of the Neighborhood

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Misadventures vacation, Week 3 – Now with more storm pictures than you’d expect from that title!

Congrats to Maya, who won The Match Before Christmas (2nd ed) by Eden Winters!

Congrats to Susan A, Karl, Samantha, Cynthia, and bheds, who won Reach for the Moon (Alejo & Bobby) by Val Kovalin!

Congrats to batchelorboy55, who won Damned If You Do: The Complete Collection by JL MerrowDamned If You Do will be released on June 24 by Riptide Publishing.

The Misadventures vacation continues!

Friday night at around 7:45 pm, I noticed that it was nearly completely black outside – not normal when the sun doesn’t set until 9 pm. And then the severe thunderstorm hit, with winds gusting to nearly 70 mph in some places. At 8 pm, I lost power for the next 30 hours.

More about the storm from the Star Tribune and Minnesota Public Radio.

Some scenes from my neighborhood on Saturday – click to embiggen.

“The storm was very, very scary!! I hid under the couch for safety.” -Mayhem

Tales of the Neighborhood

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In which I share some photos from TCPride and give away *gasp* PAPER books [CONTEST CLOSED]

This was the 40th year of TCPride. Hundreds of thousands of people turn out every year to support GLTBTQ Minnesotans and it usually restores my faith in humanity for a while. :) The big issue this year is the Anti-Marriage Amendment that will be on the ballot in November. Voting “No” means that you oppose defining, in the Minnesota State Constitution, marriage as being between one man and one woman. (One of my memorable Pride moments was trying to explain the Anti-Marriage Amendment to two Japanese tourists whilst having an asthma attack sans inhaler. Oy.)

First the pictures, then the contest. Onward!

From the Pride Parade comes this fascinating melange – the Chipotle float in the upper left, Obama reelection supporters in the upper right, and the “Mayor Rybak Says Just Vote No” crowd in front. Kudos to all the politicians who are taking a stand on this! (Remember, you can click on the pictures to embiggen them.)

Marriage was a theme throughout the Parade.

Why, yes, those are guys dressed as slices of cake riding on Segways.

And it wouldn’t be Pride without a little skin…

Here’s the drag queen who hugged me after I took her picture.

I was very impressed by all the churches and religious organizations showing their support and inclusiveness.

An idyllic scene from Loring Park after the Parade: statue, drag queen, same-sex couple.

One of my favorite parts of Pride is the QLibrary tent, where used books are sold. (This is not a picture of the tent. This is a picture of the QLibraryMobile from the Pride Parade. In case you were confused.)

And guess what? The QLibrary tent is where I got the paperback books that I’m going to give away. :) (Please note that in some cases, I have listed an ebook edition in my Goodreads link. That’s just so you can see what the correct cover looks like!)

  1. Almost Like Being in Love by Steve Kluger. A guy puts everything on the line to find the love of his life – who got away 20 years ago – in this funny, touching, fast-paced novel. This is one of those books that just doesn’t work as an ebook.
  2. Willow Bend by Ally Blue. Can two men from different worlds cut the ties binding them to heartaches past and present, and make a life together?
  3. Stress Relief by BA Tortuga. Amos thinks he’s gotten away from it all, heading off to the wilderness after the wild life in the city leads him right into an early retirement. Dave thinks he’s gotten over Amos, moving on with his life and driving himself to success at all costs. They’ve gone their separate ways, and think they’re happy with what they’ve made of their lives. So what happens when these two meet up on Dave’s long overdue vacation, forced on him by his personal assistant?
  4. The Painted House by Drew Zachary. Gabriel Nash looks for a beach house in Nova Scotia, hoping to find something perfect for the new movie he’s working on. When he sees Marc’s house, he knows it’s just right. Marc doesn’t want to deal with the movie people, but he wouldn’t mind having Gabriel around.
  5. Center by Sean Michael. This edition combines two previous novels by Sean Michael, The Center of Earth and Sky and Painting the Desert.
  6. Nothing Personal and Nick of Time by Scott & Scott. (Yup, given away as a set.) Nothing Personal: The gay marriage ban is nothing personal, unless you’re a Cuban-American gay man in the heart of red-state America. Carlo Batista takes on longtime conservative Tall Tony Scipione in a race for state representative. And he takes on mystery man Brian Gallagher in the race for his heart. Nick of Time: Nick is a savagely handsome stonemason who has given up on gay men and has agreed to marry an Irishwoman who needs him for a green card. Brent is dancer from the city in town for his sister’s wedding. To Nick, Brent’s a bitchy slut who would think nothing of breaking his heart. To Brent, Nick’s just another dumb strong closet case stuck a thousand miles from the city beat.

Contest Rules

  • To enter, leave a comment listing the books in which you are interested. (This is what is known as a Very Important Step.)
  • Contest closes 7 pm CDT, Monday, July 9.
  • By entering the contest, you’re confirming that you are at least 18 years old.
  • If you haven’t commented before, your comment will not be visible until after I moderate it. Please do not leave a second comment because your first doesn’t show up! The blog gnomes will decide your comments are spam and then only ritual dust bunny sacrifice will salvage your entry…
  • If your comment is actually an advertisement or if your CommentLuv link turns it into an advertisement, your comment will be deleted. (Most of you do not need to worry – this refers to some pretty clever comment spam.)
  • Winners will be selected by random number.
  • You must leave a valid email address in the “Email” portion of the comment form.
  • Please make sure that your spam filter allows email from stumblingoverchaos.com!
  • I am not able to reliably contact people with aol.com and netscape.com email addresses – please use a different email address if at all possible!
  • If a winner doesn’t respond to my congratulations email within 48 hours, I will select another winner.
  • This contest is open worldwide!

“I know you’re all jealous of my fabulously furry abs.” -Chaos

Tales of the Neighborhood

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In which we finally meet the long anticipated Unapologetic Pole

Congrats to Brian Holliday, who won Driftwood by Harper Fox! Driftwood will be released today by Samhain Publishing.

And congrats to Kelly, who won Infected: Prey by Andrea Speed!

Recently it was brought to my attention *coughmargenecough* that it’s been ages since I posted any pictures from my rambles around my neighborhood. While I haven’t been out and about that much this summer (curse you, stoopid autoimmune stuff!), I do have a few photos to share. Shall we?

If you don’t remember the story of the Apologetic Pole from last year, I’ll wait for you to refresh your memories. Back? Ok.

While the City didn’t make its promised “on or before Spring 2009″ deadline, it did make “after spring 2010″. :) Meet the Unapologetic Pole, which I believe is actually the same pole that was next to the Apologetic Pole, but with a pole extender stuck on it for the City wifi antenna.

Lake of the Isles continues to be its usual lovely self, with downtown Minneapolis in the distance.

From the shores of Lake Calhoun, a plaque commemorating the first dwelling in Minneapolis (1834). Some settling may have occurred.

We now have several Nice Ride bike stations in the neighborhood.

Isn’t this scooter great?

This garage makes me happy every time I see it.

These shoes were a little more interesting than the shoes one usually sees dangling from power lines… (Make sure you click on the picture to embiggen it if you can’t read the soles.)

“Yo, woman, I need me a beer and the remote.” -Chaos

Tales of the Neighborhood

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My eyeball, let me show it to you (now with more linkity than you’d expect from that title!)

Due to the holiday weekend here in the States, the Misadventures in Stock Photography will be on Tuesday instead of Monday next week.



Learn, Make, Do, Think





Teh Cute

Reading Update
Fall Down the Mountain by P.D. Singer. ebook. Very good m/m romance about a guy who works as a ski patrol at a fancy resort and who’s having a hard time getting over both his crush on an unavailable man and not having been able to save someone from dying in an avalanche. Will the sexy chef who lives down the hall from him be able to help him move on? I must confess to getting a titch frustrated with the main character’s clinginess during part of the book, even though I completely understood why he was acting that way.
The Best Man by L.A. Witt. ebook. Good m/m romance about two guys who become involved in a casual affair as they’re both getting over being dumped. This was one that I thought could’ve been very good to excellent with a bit more editing to tighten up the story. (And, hey, stalker alert!)
His One and Only (Only Forever, Book 4) by Shawn Lane. ebook. His One and Only was a sweet finish to this m/m romance series centered around the partners at a California law firm.
Poisoned Ivy by Scott Ryersson. ebook. This so-so historical paranormal m/m romance about students at Yale in the early part of the 20th century just never really came together for me. Between the language (aping Jane Austen? or trying for a more literary feel?) and the WTF ending, I never warmed to the story.
Straight as an Arrow by Sean Michael. ebook. Good kinky m/m romance about a guy who travels a lot for his job. He’s in a long-term relationship, but starts to surf D/s chat sites while he’s away from home. Typical Sean Michael fare, although one of the major aspects of this book was so implausible that it definitely detracted. (All that eye rolling I had to do, you know.)
Bound Together by Jane Davitt. ebook short. Very good m/m romance about a book collector who discovers his dominant tendencies after a younger man shows up on his doorstep selling a rare book. (Yes, that is Candy Cane Guy in the back. Good show, you!)
Aftermath by Angel Martinez. ebook. Good m/m romance about a long-term couple who struggle to recover after one of them is betrayed by a friend and assaulted. I did have a bit of a niggle about the couple not using condoms after such an assault…
Mastering Toby by Jan Irving. ebook. So-so m/m romance about a straight actor on a gay soap opera who has some confusing feelings for his gay costar (and best friend). This book never really came together, for all sorts of reasons: pacing issues, an odd tangent from the main storyline 2/3 through, and a mixture of Eastern mysticism and D/s that just didn’t work.
Strange Carnivorous Flowers from Outer Space by Matthew Vandrew. free ebook short. Cute short scifi m/m romance about a guy who’s taking his alien boyfriend home to meet the family.

From the Dreamspinner Midsummer’s Nightmare Daily Dose…
One Wild Wish by Devon Rhodes. ebook. Very good paranormal m/m romance about a band hired to play several shows at a mysterious lodge, with a contract that has some very unusual clauses that they sort of fudge.
Romanus by Mary Calmes. ebook. Good paranormal m/m romance about an exhausted firefighter who gets lost driving home after his shift and whose life will never be the same.
Beneath Lake Redemption by Libby Drew. ebook. Good paranormal m/m romance about a guy who rents a houseboat to check out a mysterious area of Lake Redemption because he suspects it hides a secret government operation.
Give the Devil His Due by Zoe Devlin. ebook short. Good paranormal m/m romance about a guy who tries to avoid emotional entanglements because the Devil takes away those he loves.
Reverie by Dawn Kimberly Johnson. ebook short. Cute paranormal m/m romance about a guy who saves someone’s life in a dream one night, then starts to wonder if it was actually a dream.
Halfway House by Lisa Worrall. ebook short. Pretty good paranormal m/m romance about two college students who don’t really know each other and are just sharing a ride home for Spring Break… and then the car breaks down in the middle of nowhere.
The Man in the Woods by Ashleigh Brannigan. ebook short. So-so paranormal m/m romance about a guy who gets a flat tire while driving on a desolate road through the woods and is rescued by a very bossy and slightly creepy guy. And what the heck – this is at least the third story I’ve read from the Midsummer’s Nightmare Daily Dose that’s based on a car breaking down on a deserted road!! Hmph.
The Min Min Lights by Barry Lowe. ebook short. Ok m/m historical romance about a relatively innocent young British man who interviews with a more worldly Australian who’s looking for a tutor for his children. The ending was a bit abrupt and left me “huh?”
The Gray Ghost by J.J. Levesque. ebook short. So-so m/m romance about a couple who have just purchased a house that no one’s stayed in for longer than a week.

Last week, I woke up to discover my eyeball looked like this:

I was, understandably, somewhat freaked, but it turned out to be very minor – a subconjunctival hemorrhage, which can happen when you’re sleeping, sneezing, coughing, or simply stressed. It’s quite a bit less dramatic now (because the red bits are mostly above and below my pupil), but probably won’t fade completely for another week.

Due to a new store in my neighborhood, things have been a bit noisy as July 4th draws near. Make sure you embiggen the photo to read the signs. Truth in advertising indeed!

Speaking of fireworks…

“I really, really hate all the loud noises outside, Mom. It’s probably your fault, so knock it off!” -Mayhem

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Tales of the Neighborhood

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