Coming Full Circle-ish

3 years.

It’s been 3 years since I started this crazy journey to becoming an ATL-ien.

3 years since I started sending job applications out and then ultimately getting hired and starting the whirlwind that brought me and my husband to where we are now.

3 years.

While that amount of time is not so notable in and of itself, what is notable is that I have at this moment regained something which I regretted giving up to come here.

In my old job, I had weekends off. I have worked every weekend since early November 2018. Starting this week, I have Sundays and Mondays off. While it’s not the entire weekend, at least I have one weekend day off.

Someday, Saturday, Someday.

Meanwhile, I will certainly enjoy being off the exact same days as Greg again. We already have these last two days. There are many, many more ahead. Just you wait! 😊

Turning the Tables

Yeah, I know, that’s a cheesy title for this blog entry. Wouldn’t you have done the same?

If you follow me on social media or are a subscriber of the Nick & Greg YouTube channel then you already know that I sent the U-Turn Orbit back and got another turntable instead. If you want the short version, here is the vlog:

I wanted to get my expanded thoughts out there as to why. Why did I do that?

First off, let me say that the U-Turn Orbit was not a bad product. It was well made, simple, and didn’t take a lot of fuss to operate. For an ordinary individual, it would perform well.

Problem is, I am not that ordinary individual.

My hands are not the best, most reliable things in the world. If it involves something small, I am more than likely to futz it up and get angry at it. This belt was no exception. The more I kept trying and not getting it on, the more frustrated I would become with myself.

Greg is a saint. He had to put up with a lot of audible cussing from me and he would keep trying to calm me down and work with me. You, as the reader, would have to be there to understand just how much this was an issue. I have no shame in talking about it now.

At the same time, I was looking at lots of reviews and videos talking about the Audio Technica AT-LP 120 and all of its versions. The more I looked at that turntable and its features, the more I liked what I saw. Several times over the course of a week together that we had off of work, I kept regretting the decision I made to get the Orbit.

So, one night I decided to pull the trigger and buy the AT-LP 120XBT-USB from Best Buy. I got it home and the setup was very simple. I carefully balanced the tonearm (which is something I didn’t have to do the last time).

So, it’s been a couple of weeks since I put it in and have been listening to a lot of material of varying genres across the scope of what I own. What do I think?

I think I made the right decision. I just want to put a record on with no fuss and have it sound good. This turntable does that and I couldn’t be happier. I have fallen in love with my vinyl yet again and even deeper. As a matter of fact, at the time I am writing this post, I haven’t listened to an album in a couple of days. I think I might do that when I get home tonight.

My Love Affair with Vinyl

The evening of this blog post, I am going to receive a nice, new, spiffy turntable that we bought over a month ago tomorrow. Details on that to come.

It got me to thinking why I love vinyl so much. I’ll just give you the bullet points.

  • It has a warm, pleasing sound.
  • It has a nice, physical feel.
  • Lots of rare things that haven’t been released on other media, like, ever
  • It just looks good
  • I love a good used record shop, and there are plenty of them in the ATL and other cities
  • I always find a good super-rare bargain!
  • The format has always fascinated me since I was a kid

I distinctly remember that I probably was the only kid in school that would check out LPs from the local library. This was in the mid-90s and they probably didn’t hold onto them much longer after that. One title I loved to check out was the Return of the Jedi soundtrack (RSO Records, 1983). Alas, I don’t think I have that particular pressing myself. I have a Polydor repressing from later in the 80s (date unknown) and a gold vinyl 180-gram repress from 2016. But I digress… (BTW, if you want to see my vinyl collection, you can go here and filter it down by LP, 7/12″ Singles, and for that matter look at my CDs too)

Me and Greg bought our first turntable, a Sony PS-LX250H in 2005, not long after we became a couple. It has served us well for these last 16 years and has never given us a problem. It sounds great.

But there are reasons why I wanted to go with a new, middle-range turntable. Details on that will be in a video on the Nick & Greg YouTube channel in the coming days. You see, I am going to do an unboxing video of the new one! (What, you thought I was going to spill all the beans here?)

Needless to say this purchase has been years in the making. Not on account of affordability, this turntable was always very affordable. It just felt like the right time to do it.

Plus, a 16 year old belt drive turntable has had a good run.

Stay tuned for more!

Random Thoughts – 03/18/2021

I sit here with my mind in a blur. It’s been a hell of a week in Atlanta. I am going to assume the reader by now has heard of the tragic and hateful events that transpired earlier this week.
(However, in case you’ve been living under a rock, go get up to speed.)

I echo what a lot of other people have said, hate has no home in ATL. None whatsoever.

What I do want to talk about is how I personally feel about all of this and how it relates to me.

As a gay man, I have had my fair share of hate, scorn, epithets and what have you thrown at me. It’s not fun. In my travels here, I have driven past the places where this all happened lots of times. I never though anything of them. They are legitimate businesses ran by good people. To have so many lives cut short by a terrorist claiming he was trying to remove sources of his sex addiction is just the most ridiculous thing I have heard in quite a while.

How can a person live with themselves after that.

Gah. I don’t know.

There is lots more to digest out of this, but I don’t want to ramble on. A lot of other people have already said what I am thinking.

Let my good friend Ron educate you a bit:

Atlanta is strong. We won’t let hate win. I know this place is a good one. I still love it here and we will go forward stronger. Say their names.

Obligatory Blog Update – 12/20/2020

OK, so what has happened.

Well, the world is still so far upside-down.

I am still upside-down.

I am not sleeping well. I need to start exercising to try and help that.

We got the condo, we moved in over a month ago. Maybe someday I will get used to the obnoxiously loud engines on 17th Street.

Xmas is this week. We are doing it virtually like most everyone else is and we are OK with that.

Live stream Xmas Night at http://youtube.com/nickandgreg/. Please join us.

Kthxbai.

Dread

With all of the stuff that is happening in life that I have to be enthusiastic about there is always a flip side. It is an inane sense of dread.

Dread for the hopelessness that we as a country are never going to get out of this shit show that we have been in for the last four years.

Dread that it won’t get better.

Dread that we are not going to have the freedoms anymore that we have had for the last two plus centuries.

Dread.

It’s a powerful emotion that consumes me.

The Guide is Alive!

After a couple of days of work, the refurbished Dark Shadows Episode Guide is open and ready for everyone to return!

It has gotten a great redesign with a clean and easy to use menu.

I have to give a lot of credit to my husband Greg for helping out with a lot of issues on the site design I was having.

Do go and take a look at http://darkshadows.nickbrobeck.com/ and let me know if you have any questions!

Thanks for your support.

-Nick B.

A Change of Heart

In the last post, I talked about how the Dark Shadows Episode Guide I ran looked dated. That remains true

I had an eleventh hour epiphany so to speak after a wonderful article about Dark Shadows appeared in the New York Times a few days ago.

I am fortunate to have befriended Wallace McBride and the excellent people who have curated The Collinsport Historical Society, an awesome blog dedicated to the show. I have even contributed an article over there previously.

When that article appeared a few days ago it got me to thinking… people really did love that episode guide. I did actually get a couple of emails about it. They were nice and cordial.

Long story short. I am giving the guide an overhaul and bringing it back. It’ll take a few days but it’ll get there. I have already started work.

Stay tuned!

Leaving it Behind in the Past

Dark Shadows Bumper Card

Recently I decided it was time to close down the Dark Shadows Episode Guide I had curated on the internet for almost two decades. At the time I was a member of the alt.tv.dark_shadows newsgroup after just discovering the reruns on the Sci-Fi Channel.

There posted just about every day were summaries of the episodes as well as the tape date and air date of the shows. I expanded on this slightly adding in the ABC numbering of the episodes (which is a very weird-ass system to this day) and, where applicable, the Worldvision rerun numbers used when the show was in syndication from 1975-1990.

It never needed updating as pretty much all of the information was there.

So, why did I take it down?

It was feeling really outdated to me. I may bring it back in the future in another form. Who knows. It was just that I didn’t want something online to appear so dated and I don’t have the time currently to give it the makeover it deserves. After all, there are some exciting times ahead in life for me and Greg.

So, the guide is gone from my website for now. It’s in the internet archive preserved for those who want to see it. Just go to nickbrobeck.com/darkshadows and it’ll redirect you there after a few seconds.

 

A Minor/Major Change

So I decided that I should make what to some might be a minor change. To others, it might be considered a major change. It by no means is legal yet, that will happen in 2021. But I feel it’s long overdue that I exercise my right to take my husband’s last name.

It’s minor and major to me all at the same time. I won’t go on record as to the specific reasons why I am doing this. I just feel it is the right thing to do.

So, there. It is partially done. At least in the court of social media and this website… whatever the hell that counts for.

Oh, and by the way, lots of exciting stuff is already happening. Details to come soon.

TTFN.