Saturday, April 10, 2010

Friday night's all right for... global domination

So, after a pretty lame start, last night took a pretty good bounce on me. Nate was asleep in the comfy chair and terminally uninterested in anything I suggested. Tammy was all like, 'Well, I'll do whatever everybody else wants to do', while not sounding excited about anything. So I suggested we go see a movie, but Nate didn't want to see CRAZY HEART, which is the only thing still playing that Tammy and I are interested, and the only new movie that started this week is DATE NIGHT, which is like, what? I mean, seriously. It's the weekend, I'm looking for something new and good to go see, I know KICK ASS and IRON MAN 2 are supposed to be opening sometime soon, I check new movies, and what do I get? Fucking DATE NIGHT. Say, Hollywood, blow me.

So then I'm all like, okay, let's go to ROLE OF THE DIE and play Magic. And they were like, nah, everybody at ROLE OF THE DIE hates us. Now, I don't think anybody at ROLE OF THE DIE hates us, but there are one or two people there who are not on our favorite person's list, but, still, we hadn't been to ROLE OF THE DIE in a long time, and the alternative seems to be, Nate goes home and goes to bed, and Tammy and I watch BUFFY DVDs all night, which is okay, but, you know, I was bored and looking for something a little more out of our standard activity stream. So then Tammy or Nate, I forget which, said "Let's get a new game", and the other one said "Where could we go to get a new game?" and I said "ROLE OF THE DIE, and hey, let's get FELLOWSHIP OF THE TALISMAN", which is this cool game that the one group of gamers I used to hang out with in Syracuse used to play all the time, except you have to get rid of the Prophetess, because everybody hates that little bitch. And they were like, blarg, okay, whatever.

So we rolled to ROLE OF THE DIE, with the back up plan being, if we couldn't find a good game, we'd head to Blockbuster and rent something. But first we hit the Smok Shop for Pepsi, Mountain Dew, and an energy drink for Nate to wake al our asses up.

At ROLE OF THE DIE we couldn't find FELLOWSHIP OF THE TALISMAN; in fact, most of their games seemed to be among the missing, which Brian's dad, who was apparently in charge for the night, told us was because Brian had taken nearly all of their stock off to ConGlomeration. But Nate spied ILLUMINATI and said "This sounds kinda cool" and I went totally apeshit, because ILLUMINATI is this game that I used to play all the time with the other clique I hung out with in Syracuse, my first gaming clique, the one with Jeff Webb and all the assholes that used to be my best friends for life and beyond and that I haven't heard a word from in twenty five years. But it's a really cool game, and I grabbed it and said "This is a really cool game, we have to buy it!" So we bought it and got it out of the box and played a game right there at ROLE OF THE DIE, which other than us and two guys playing D&D and Brian's dad, was totally empty all night. (I almost never see anyone in ROLE OF THE DIE buying much of anything; I'm convinced Brian is actually a covert billionaire who fights crime as a masked avenger most of the time, and the store is just a front hiding a secret entrance into his underground headquarters.)

And it was totally awesome. So Nate picked up the Y2K expansion, providing a lot more cards and two new Illuminati groups, which is also cool.

And then we were looking for a place to eat, and we tried Penn Station, but they were closed, so I suggested Spinelli's, which is this awesome local pizza place, so we went there and got a huge meat lover's pizza and I gorged myself, and then we came home, and eventually went to sleep, and now it's today.

Tammy totally kicked all our asses at ILLUMINATI, by the way. I had forgotten, over the last 25 years, that when someone is playing the Servants of Cthulhu, you need to kill them quickly, or they just roll right over you. I had also forgotten that the Network is about the weakest and most vulnerable group, and that was what I drew.

So how was everyone else's Friday night?

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Interminable, my dear Watson

So, we found some Sherlock Holmes TV shows from the 50s on DVD the other day, and picked them up. This is the 1950s series, starring Ronald Howard (not RON Howard) as Sherlock Holmes and Howard Marion Crawford as Watson. I had the time to sit down and try to watch the first episode yesterday.

It was hard to get through the first episode, for two reasons: first, the soundtrack is pretty tinny, which makes a great deal of the dialogue all but impossible to discern. That's a real problem for someone like me, who loves dialogue and whose only real interest in Sherlock Holmes is the characterization and all those cool deductions Holmes does, which you won't ever know about without the dialogue.

The second problem is even more aggravating - as with most TV shows shot in the 50s, there are no close ups, and all the camera positions are entirely stationery. My guess would be that the less expensive cameras used for TV work in this era had no zoom lens capacity. But the result is, as you may recall from other TV shows you've watched that were made in this period, everything is presented in long or medium shot. And it's all black and white, badly washed out sepia tone black and white at that.

So what you end up with is a visual presentation that is pretty stultifying, especially to a modern audience, used to color, tracking shots, close ups, audible dialogue, and all the other aspects of modern film making directors use to convey emotion and other nuances of characterization and story.

It's tough to get through. Perhaps a really serious student of Holmes, or of 50s era television, could glean enough of interest from the material to stay focused, but me, I just mostly found myself constantly drifting away from the narrative.

It's a pity. But those of us who can read will always have the Conan Doyle originals.

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Go, Go,!

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vendita auto usate !
compro auto usate !

When you hear those ringing words, what does your mind automatically turn to?

Sell and buy car: has been in business since 1978 with experience and professionalism, always attentive to the needs and customer satisfaction. Efficiency, competence and thoroughness are our trump cards to continue to offer service and assistance, safe, guaranteed and worthy of trust. The website is in Italian if you can't read Italian here's the translated version -

At least, that's what I think of.

Check it out for yourself. Check out You'll find it's one hell of a webpage, representing one hell of a phrase in Italian.

When top scientists like my personal friend Jix Casey or Dr. Emilio Lizardo tour Europe, is their go to website for fast, furious, friendly, frantic, frenzied fun. When you’re being pursued up one side of the Swiss Alps and down the other by Red Lectroids or Satan worshipping bovine growth hormone cultists in flashy red Miatas with the tops down, it pays to have on your speed dial. One lucky shot with a .45 Beretta and you could seriously need a quick tire change. Otherwise, it’s don’t ask for whom the lunch bell tolls, because you’re the one bubbling in the ancient Lemurian serpent man stewpot.

A blast of high energy particles from your orbital quason cannon later, you may have the strength and speed of a few dozen South American jaguars. Or you may be goo. But latter day jungle god or amorphous, pulsating jelly, you’re still going to need the services of a talented mechanic to keep that chick magnet Ferrari on the road. And petrol? Forget about it. The best, quickest, most high octane and competitively priced petrol in the Western Hemisphere is right there, at . It rocks!

Thursday, April 01, 2010

The Way Things Ought To Be

It's clear to me that our Founding Fathers, in their haste to put together a final draft of a historically important document, left out a few key words. But it's an easy fix:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of any decent Christian religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech for right thinking decent American folk, or of the press for same; or the right of proper hardworking Godfearing American citizens peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of good God fearing law abiding Christians and other true Americans to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house owned by any right thinking God fearing Christian American, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

The right of decent God fearing Christian people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

No proper well behaved God fearing American person shall be held to answer for any capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any true right thinking American be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district where in the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense, if the accused is a good God fearing patriotic American citizen and not some stupid wetback or dumbass liberal.

In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted, on any decent right thinking American.

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by proper decent hard working tax paying American folks.

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the regular law abiding properly Christian folks who live in ‘em.

See? Add a few words here and there, and you can make it exactly the way those great American heroes no doubt intended it should be all along.