Thursday, February 27, 2014

Bite The Bullet Vs. An Animal Called Man

Podcasts, Podcasts, Podcasts everywhere this week.  I figured even though I was going to try and hammer out an Antagonists Relations, Insecurity Blanket & Heel Turn Radio this week I should still try and write something, but I had a hard time thinking about what I wanted to say, and how I wanted to say it today.  Lack of focus I suppose, so I’m just going to go stream of consciousness and bludgeon the collective Interwebs with what I like to call…


- I finished ‘Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children’ (Infinite *’s out of 5) by Ransom Riggs a few weeks back, but had forgotten to give it a proper pellet review.
This book is part Harry Potter, part old school X-Men comics, part horror, and all fun.  The photos that inspired this book are so strangely wondrous that they feel authentic to the strange tale that Mr. Riggs weaves around them.  It feels utterly and completely organic, in a strange Neil Gaiman & Jack Kirby adopted Steven King’s love child sort of way.  The premise is simple, there are special, aka ‘Peculiar’, people and they have always been among us.  However, some of their number have become something else, something terrifyingly Lovecraftian after a botched attempt at Godhood.  Now they hunt their former people in a slow genocide that has been occurring on the peripheral of the modern age.  And after the death of his Grandfather, Jacob tries to unravel the ‘truth’ behind his Grandfather’s wild tales and horrific demise.  I will NOT spoil this for you, because this is a book you should all read.  It is truly a treat, and every page has a wonder and joy to it that I found charming and captivating.  So pick it up, even if it is simply to read to someone else.  Thank you Magic Mike for allowing me to borrow it!

- Chili, I think I’m really hungry for Chili again.

- A few weekends back 1st Group D&D got back together and it went ok.  I was very worried after Bob’s exit, as I had to rework a LOT of things in the overall story.  A lot.  Surprisingly enough that part wasn’t the challenge.  The real challenge was effectively herding the cats that is a 8 person group.  It is hard to keep things moving, to make it fun for all the different play styles, and to have a story that integrates all there back stories and future directions.  I tried an early Bulette encounter early on, a monster I have never used.
What I found though is Zack’s new character is a HUGE pain in the ass in combat, and I mean that with the utmost admiration.  He is a BEAST!  Couple that with three Mages, the Rogue, the new Slayer that Cassie is playing, and last but not least THE Karl’s amazing Knight and is a wonder the fight lasted as long as it did.  The effectively pinned me in place and pummeled me.  PUMMELED!  The second Encounter was a bit different, an exploration with a lot of role play and a HUGE trap at the end.  It gave the PC’s a chance to go through a ransacked village, look for clues, loot, find survivors, and use some different skills.  I thought it built tension for some of the PC’s, but I think it fell flat for some of the more combat orientated in the group.  I wouldn’t call it a failure overall, but it didn’t go over as well as I had hoped.  I had a bridge crossing skill challenge during a torrential storm with a bridge out up next.  I was very intrigued to see how this played out then the PC’s just used spells to make it a non-issue.  I found myself scratching my head and feeling like I had VASTLY underestimated the power of the group, which brought us to the last Encounter against The Others as they culled ‘raw materials’ from a village.  This one challenged them I think.  I had a Big Baddie who really gave Zack fits due to the STUN condition, which I’ll talk about in a bit.  There were lower end baddies, minions, and snipers all working in conjunction to force the PC’s to work effectively as a team.  And in the end they did.  They did so in a beautiful and efficient fashion.  So when it comes to STUN I have outlawed it my house.  It really did tear the heart out of the fun for Zack, and I can see why.  Essentially stealing PC’s turns repetitively is just mean.  Without that ugly sticking point I thought that the end Encounter was solid and presented a challenge to the PC’s overall.  In addition it actually moved the narrative forward and set the tone for what comes next.  The PC’s have a mission now to complete, an enemy revealed, and a strange set of interpersonal relationships forming.  It was a solid ‘B’ session.

- Interviews are starting to accumulate for me, and I can feel it, change is on the horizon on the employment front.

- This last weekend was pretty awful.  I had a serious series of seizures, try and say that fast five times, over three days.  They really, REALLY put me on my heels.  I get it to a degree it has been SUPER stressful of late around the job front, I’ve had a lingering cold, and Cassandra was in Urgent Care on Thurs., but the rapid fire shit storm I went through was monumental.  I’m still pretty sore, but worse than that is watching Cassandra deal with it.  So we are both on board now and committing to going at the very least Gluten light starting officially in March.  I’ve already given up donuts and beer post last session of Apocalypse World (single tear).  That’s right the elixir of the Gawds, Beer, is off my plate now.  This is just the start though.  We’ve been cutting down for a while, and now we are just solidifying those nutrition plans.  That means pizza changes, cutting down and then cutting out bread, and so many other changes.  It is a big change, like SUPER big.  The hope is that doing a version of the Ketogenic Diet will help my brain not be such a mess, and if I lose some weight and get healthier in the meantime then that’s just a fantastic side effect.  I’m honestly quite scared about it, well more scared about what happens if things continue the way they have been, but scared as well that I can’t hack it.  I’ve never been good at dieting.  I like to eat; well honestly I love to eat.  This is a different beast though as I have a solid support system and I really have to do something.  So by this Sat. I’ll be marching down the road of some new eating ‘life style’ choices.  I hope I am up to the challenge.  Wish me luck!

- A haircut is needed soon, but I don’t think I can ‘Rock The Hawk’ during interview, a quandary…

- I just finished reading ‘He, She, & It’ (Infinite *’s out of 5) by Marge Piercy.
I don’t think I’ve read as interesting and enthralling a sci-fi novel in a LONG time.  The ability to take the idea of AI’s, robots, and cyborgs and put it in direct juxtaposition with the Jewish Golem is genius.  The parallel tales of Joseph and Yod’s journey’s to find ‘humanity’ in an existence they were created to endure struck my profoundly.  His entanglement and relationship with the main protagonist Shira is fascinating on so many levels.  What does it mean to Love, to truly Love?  What does it mean to be human?  What makes you who you are?  What inspires or makes one aspire to believe in a high power or any religion?  What is family?  It has been awhile since I’ve had a book really make me think about those types of concepts in a fictional tale and at the same time entertain the hell out of me.  And this book did both.  This is a book I can see myself revisiting every few years, it is that fantastic.  HIGHLY recommended.

- Our front yard looks like Hoth.

- Gamma World is on Saturday and I’m done with prep, and excited about the possibilities.  It seems as if it’ll be a pretty female heavy group, which will be a drastic change from most games I get a chance to run.
I’ve built the monsters decently, and I have a pretty good idea on how I want to implement them into the first session.  I’ve decided to keep things sort of linear by having it as an ‘object acquired opens next level’ sort of build for this first season.  I figure though if I keep it somewhat vague I can take it off the rails any time as my imagination keeps racing.

- I might go in ‘halvsies’ on the WWE Network with Diamond Dave.  I am still intrigued.

- Dick Valentine’s solo record ‘Destroy The Children’ (Infinite *’s out of 5) is simply amazing.  I am a HUGE Electric Six shill, and had the front man’s solo album on my hard drive but hadn’t given it any time except for the title track which is simply and utterly fantastic.
However after sitting down and devouring it over and over again I can safely say I am in enthralled by the whole thing.  It is a strange mix of folk music and insane subject matter.  This is the sort of thing that if I still hung out with Dark Dave that I’d have to make him a copy ASAP and leave it in his mail box, only to wait by the phone like a teenager to get his reaction.  It is that good, that odd, and I’ve enjoyed it that much.  For a taste just go to YOUTube and listen and watch the video for the title track, ‘Destroy The Children’.  The video is MESSED UP, and brilliant, but it is eclipsed by the strangely hypnotic song.  A masterpiece to someone like myself.  SO, if you like things that are a bit off center and original then give it a listen.

- Cuddling is awesome…If you didn’t know…

- We watched the Nature Honey Badger special ‘Masters Of Mayhem’ (**** out of 5) on PBS, and it is true they truly do not give a F’.  Watching an animal the size of a dog chase a lion is pretty damn impressive.
I think the thing that really was startling and a revelation was just how smart the Honey Badger is.  Watching ‘Stozel’, a ‘saved’ Honey Badger at an animal sanctuary, escape from enclosed habitat after enclosed habitat was incredible.  If you couple that with not only his, but his whole species ability to problem solve, and work around obstacles it is pretty amazing.  Two Honey Badgers facing down full grown Hyena’s and having them back down was also incredible impressive.  I had sort of forgotten just how awesome Nature is as a program, this was certainly a fine reminder, seek it out if you can.

- I really need to watch Pacific Rim this weekend.

- We watched ‘The Hunger Games’ on Tuesday night.  I’m refraining from talking about it, as in the near future I’m going to sit down with my Hunger Games Posse, Magic Mike & THE Kedrin, for a Podcast where we’ll discuss the books and the first two films.  I don’t think I can really do the subject justice alone and quite frankly I want to go into full blown discussion mode with two people have strong opinions and even better minds.  It’ll give me a chance to really dig back into something that I was shocked by how much I thoroughly enjoyed reading.  If you can’t tell I am beyond excited to do this.

- Beer Cheese Soup, I want to have one more culinary affair with you!

I think that is all I really have to give….

“So what have we learned,
From this life they made us do?
I wasted all my time
On loving you,

They lined us up,
And paired off in twos,
Laughing that they pulled off,
This elaborate ruse,

You control the world,
When you control the news,
And we refuse to choose,
Leaving us no choice but to...

Destroy the children,
Before they are the masters,
Dressing in monkey suits,
And causing their own disasters,

And please,
Make sure they suffer dearly,
Because I don't suffer fools,
Unless I state this more clearly,

So what do we do,
When we live and we don't learn,
We throw our hearts in a fire,
And watch them burn,

They line us up,
To wait here for our turn,
For congrue with a taste,
We can discern,

You're never found guilty,
If courts never adjourn,
And let's use all of that money,
We never earn to...

Destroy the children,
Before they have the answer,
And replace the singer-songwriter with,
Autotune dancers,

And please,
Make sure they learn their lesson,
Because it's clear they don't know,
With whom they are messing,

And before you cast me as the dunce,
I am well aware I was a child once,
With a destiny only ambition hunts,
All you gentlemen are such royal cunts,
Draw like mars, 
To impossible stunts of love,

So what do we do, 
When learned how to live,
We give back all of the advice,
We were too young to give,

Dress our love up,
With many an expletive,
And pouring all of our love,
Through a rusty sieve as we...

Destroy the children,
Before they destroy each other,
And imprison Lindsay Lohan,
Before she becomes a mother,

And please,
Like she's the virgin Mary,
Polluting our souls,
With Hollywood dysentery…”

* = This explains why this blog is so damn late...


  1. BTW, I believe my beer cheese soup (the one with all the blended vegetables) is gluten free. Not completely healthy since there's like 4 -6 cups of cheese, but technically gluten free. All I need to do is buy hash brown nubs and we can make it this weekend...