Sunday, August 17, 2008


What I'm reading, writing, playing, watching.

Gaunt's Ghosts: The Founding. By Dan Abnett.
This is the omnibus containing the first three books of the series. It's vastly more detailed than the Sandy Mitchell Commissar Cain books, but it's also gritty, violent and lacking the fun of the Cain series. I probably won't continue past the omnibus, but it's enjoyable, light reading.

The Economist. I eagerly awaited my current issue after NPR made a mess of their reporting of the Georgia-Russia hostilities. Their attempt at impartiality ruined any attempt at clarifying how things happened. In other words, they pretended the Russian account of things deserved equal time and consideration. The Economist showed up and thankfully put the conflict into perspective for me. A subscription is some serious money, but it's worth it.

The Words of My Perfect Teacher. This is a Tibetan Buddhist text that had a profound influence on me in grad school. It's written for lay Tibetan Buddhists, the common yak herder of centuries ago, so it's very easy to understand.

I'm working on my presentation for the ACD Game Day. Despite all the blog posts on the topic, the actual presentation is a lot more focused on POS systems and how to leverage them. My deadline is in two weeks, so I'll be spending more time on it soon. Really. Promise.

My D&D 4 group meets again today after several weeks of Summer malaise and scheduling issues. Time will tell if the campaign gets off the ground. Right now I'm not terribly interested in putting any more effort into it until I see commitment from the players.

My goal to achieve a 3,000 point Apocalypse 40K army is sidetracked a bit with the Ard Boyz Tournament. It's not that I want to play in it, or even qualify an army for it, but it got me thinking I should carefully get to that 2,500-3,000 point mark without Apocalypse models. Until I figure it out, I've got two Hellhounds to paint and my melta gunners.

Our RPOL Traveller game should be gearing up to start any day now. Yep, any day now.... Or did we start already? It's hard to tell. My character is in a bar. I'm probably more excited about this than my D&D game.

Oh what a TV watching whore I've been. I've been starting out renting series on Netflix and then picking them up if I like them with Bit torrent. Netflix messed up their shipping last week, reminding me how their business model is increasingly irrelevant. I'm a regular watcher of:

BBC Top Gear. It's done for the season, but you can't get their banter on BBC America (it's edited out). I'm still a car fan and especially love to see cars we can't get here. For example, I've got a big crush on the Alfa Romeo 159 sport wagon. My final frontier (and eventual heartbreak) is an Italian car. Every man should own an Italian car before he dies, or a German one out of warranty (same thing).

Huff. Moderately interesting Showtime series about a psychologist whose life is going to hell in a hand basket. The first season is good. Skip it after that. It's uneven by entertaining.

Burn Notice. On USA Network, it's a modern interpretation of The A Team. There's an interesting secondary story about the Burn Notice issue that moves far too slowly for me. Stop getting cats out of trees and take on the faceless spy organization that burned you! It's like when I skip the Frodo/Sam scenes on the Return of the King DVD and just watch all the battles.

Weeds. The plotline of this Showtime drug induced fantasy has gone way off the deep end, but the acting keeps me watching. It's sheer spectacle pulled off brilliantly. This is the one show that I greatly anticipate watching.

Generation Kill. HBO series puts you with a Marine recon unit in the early days of the Iraq war. I can't tell you if it's an accurate portrayal, but man, does it feel like the chaos we heard about. It's dark, sad, tragic, often funny and riveting. It always puts me in a bad mood, but it's highly enjoyable anyway. It's the show that I save for when everyone in the house is asleep.


  1. Yes, the Traveller campaign has started, even though only four of the seven players are currently posting. I'm hoping the other three will join in, but based on my limited experience it's not unusual for there to be a bit of player churn, especially in the beginning of these things.

    For the record, I'd like to state that I didn't start my game in a bar, the players chose to go to one, and it's an oxygen bar.

  2. Your game cred remains intact. The bar probably kept the group from fragmenting and going off in their own directions, so it's probably a good thing.

  3. One of the advantages of play-by-post is that while a fragmented group is still more difficult to run, it doesn't seem to be as big a pain as it is face-to-face.

    The hard part is making sure that every sub-group has something interesting to do until everyone gets back together.

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  6. That's OK. We will make sure Gary gets some oxygen so he leaves the ship alone and doesn't get spaced by the Captain :)

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