Category Archives: Personal

Building an Arcade Cabinet

After my house burnt down recently I needed something to relax me and remove some of the stress of day to day work, filling out endless insurance documents or thinking about what needed to be done to build our next house was getting to me, this kind of stress is common place at the moment, something I see a lot of people can relate to in these pandemic times!

For a while now I have been looking into building an Arcade Cabinet but never really found time to do it.

Given my unique point in life where I literally own nothing, and as something fun to do I set about watching YouTube videos, talking to friends and searching the web for how to put one together and what I would need.  I found my stress relief project!

The idea in this blog post is not to claim I am now an expert at building Arcade cabinets, far from it, its more to share my experience as I cam from knowing nothing and there were questions I had that I had to look in multiple places to answer, this will hopefully provide someone some useful information and help them.

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Thank You Everyone!

“Thank You”…. words that just really do not convey the magnitude of what I am feeling right now for friends, family, my VMware colleagues and the vCommunity.

I have always prided myself on being the person who helps others, whether its through my blog, my scripts, being a PM and pointing my products in the right direction or just in general life, I have enjoyed being the one who supports others…. recently the shoe has been on the other foot.  As I’m sure most of you know by now, my family home was completely obliterated by the CZU Lightning Complex Fire along with 100’s of other houses.  We were evacuated at 3AM in the morning and were able to grab the basics like passports, a change of clothes and most importantly the family were able to escape safely to a nearby town and a friends house.

We had the bad news a few days after, everything we have ever owned was destroyed 🙁

We are completely overwhelmed and thankful for the incredible response to the Go Fund Me account and Venmo account that was set up for us by friends and contributed to by 100’s of people.

We can’t describe how we are feeling very well as every hour brings a roller coaster of emotions, we have such highs when we see how much everyone wants to help us and how much we are loved and then we have such lows when we remember the little things that we have lost, the kids yearbooks, cheer and softball trophies, all my youngest sons toys and books, My wife’s Tupperware collection, My clown picture that terrified me as a child, so when my Nan passed away of course that was what I wanted from her house!!

This incredible amount of money will make such a difference, there is so much that we have to organize and pay out for even before we can get up to our land and find out where we even begin to start.

Again we thank each and everyone of you that has so generously donated to us, no money can’t buy you happiness, but it can buy peace of mind and at the moment that’s priceless, without this fund we would have no peace of mind and I can’t imagine how much harder that would make this horrendous situation.

I hope people reading this never have to go through this kind of experience, especially with children, my biggest worry is making sure I provide a stable environment for them.

I have no doubt we will rebuild a better, bigger house once everything is all sorted out and I work through the insurance mine field! My family arrived in America 8 years ago with 8 suitcases and now we are starting again, we know we can do this as the amount of friends we have made is clearly visible through the support we are getting at the moment!

During the bad times there were definitely things that brightened our spirits, far too many to mention here as the help and comments and messages were literally hundreds a day, here are a few that my family found touching, inspiring and funny…

  • The Matlocks, you are amazing! Everything you do for us is fantastic, we are so lucky to have you
  • Pat Gelsinger and the entire C level team at VMware for helping me in every way possible they could
  • Matt Coppinger for being there for me when I melted down in the midst of all the stress!
  • Duncan, Cormac, William, Frank, we have been together since the start and I don’t know what I would do without you guys.
  • Tina & Rick Walsworth, you are amazing, enabling us to get back on our feet in the darkest of our times and have a fresh mind while we worked on insurance and next steps.
  • Andy Banta for making me laugh when my wife couldn’t understand why the donated amount was $256 – Anyone in IT will get the joke!
  • Michael Dell for reaching out to me and making sure we were ok
  • Chris Wolf (You know what you did! WOW!)
  • Tisa Murdock – You really touched our hearts, thank you!
  • My team for picking up the slack while I wasn’t around and we still had deadlines to meet
  • The Rolen Clan, the Adams Family, the Boose Family, all our other friends who were there for us, what ever we needed!
  • Bess and her team at Studio 3 Design for helping us move forward and thing about the memories we want to make in our new home!
  • The vCommunity, I have known the VMware community has been special since I joined it but it astounds me just how fantastic it really is and how much people help and care for each other!
  • The comments on the Go Fund Me page kept us going, my family read every one of them and loved them.

Again, if I didn’t mention you its not that I don’t appreciate you its just that my brain is still fried from working things out! Thank you.


And finally a few more pics from the rubble which I will one day print out…