The Rat Brothers Paint A House

…with tiny little rat sized brushes

Poll Results

Altho voting was spread out all over the place, OTE Style High Weirdness won with 4 votes. Now, that doesn’t mean I’ll be running an OTE game, but it does help me focus my thoughts.

As for the Pulp Character Poll, the winner was Ace Pilot and we’ll just make him a guy and name him Captain Allen “Hawk” Hawkins. Tonight, I’ll put up a poll so we can start fleshing him out a bit.

And now it’s all about the dog walking and the going to work.

FooFoo, The Happy Marmot

…and his drunken little woodland pals

Poll Results

Wow…voting was all over the place on this one, but the winner is Ace Pilot. We’ll start working on him/her tomorrow.

Now, let’s do another poll and help Uncle Doc figure out what game/games he wants to run at GenCon.

And now I’m off to walk the happy hounds.

Frozen Vultures

…not on a stick

GenCon News

Due to tight money and fall classes starting early, Grace has decided to skip GenCon this year. It sucks, but she really does need the extra time and money to get ready for classes. So…

…I’ll be at GenCon alone AND I could use a roommate. If you are going and you can come up with half of the cost of the hotel room, send me an email. Smokers and stinky gamers need not apply. Nubile young babes can apply, but ya won’t be able to seduce me into letting you stay for free:)

The Horticultural Whore Goes To War

…on weeds, mostly

What I did on my Saturday and Sunday of Memorial Day Weekend

1: Dried some herbs (tarragon, basil, mint & sage) from the garden by putting them in paper bags and leaving them inside the hot car for 2 days.

2: Took Daisy to the park for a long walk

3: Transplanted tomatos, gourds, chiles, squash and bunches of marigolds and dianthus (aka cottage pinks)

4: Dug up a beloved old lavendar bush that was dying from root rot

5: Went shopping for garden supplies (bark mulch, steer manure and some cute little pork & beans sedum.

6: Took My Sweet Angel Grace to see Shrek the Third. It was funny and fun, but I’m thinking the franchise needs a rest.

7: Laid waste to scores of my weedy enemies and then laughed at the lamentations of their women and children.

8: Finally chopped off the droopy tops of my daffodils

9: Wrassled with the girls…played ball with the girls…gave belly rubs to the girls…gave tasty treats to the girls

10: Added even more material to Compost Pile X-47 Gamma

And today, I must work for a few hours.

More bloggage later.

3:15 In The Morning And The City Was Fogged In

…as San Francisco often is

So, I guess today was the 30th anniversary of the premiere of Star Wars. No doubt geeks everywhere paused for a moment of reverential silence:)

What gave me pause today was remembering that this summer is the 40th anniversary of the Summer of Love. Now, I was only 13 back then and I didn’t participate in the festivities in a full blown manner, but I did manage to get down to The City about five times between late April and mid August, 1967. Generally, travelling the 150+ miles required not a little subterfuge where my parents were concerned. Most of the time the excursions were only for a few hours, but in July several of us spent two days in Hippie Central (thanks to my good friends aunt hosting an “Extra Special Birthday” for him).

No, I never did any drugs during that time and tho I did get a bit of the ever popular free love, my virtue remained technically intact:) The big thrill of going to San Francisco was the utter difference of life on the Haight as opposed to the rest of the world in general and rural Northern California in particular. Of course, as time went by, even a simple country lad such as myself could see that the whole thing was going down the tubes.

But man, what a wild trip it was while it lasted.

Chasing An Alligator Up A Tree

…a peach tree

Quick Stuff

1: Was gonna go to KublahCon this weekend, but since our GenCon fund is still a few hundred bucks short, I’ll have to stay home.

2: Even as you read this, Alton Brown is wrapping up taping of a second 6 episodes of Feasting On Asphalt for an August 4 debut on Food Network.

3: Related to the above, Good Eats has won a Peabody Award.

4: Soon I shall have to choose which adventure I’ll run for my gaming pals at GenCon. I am stressing a bit on this. Should I set up a poll and let you, the Gentle Reader, decide?

5: I re-watched the Heroes season finale and while I can understand how some folks think that the final battle with Sylar was too quickly done, I think I rather like the fact that they avoided a bigass comic book slugfest.

6: I shall be taking My Sweet Little Ninja Gecko Of Happiness to see Shrek 3 this weekend. My baby, she loves her some Shrek movies.

and now, I’m off to walk the hounds and then go to work.

The Dangerous Arrangement With The Man From Paris

…fortunately, it ended well

Just finished watching the season finale of Heroes and all I can say is…wow! A very satisfying ending, with a few comic book style loose ends left dangling, but nothing major. And that introduction to next season…Hot Damn! I can hardly wait for fall to arrive.

Fairly tired tonight, so I’ll write more tomorrow, including a new Pulp Chracter Creation Poll

All The Best Dogs Have Chinese Eyes

…both a Winker reference and a Pete Townsend reference

Mini Review: Spider-Man 3

Too many villains…too long…good story, but knowing that Sony forced Sam Raimi to include the whole Venom storyline makes me want to see the movie that should have been…some very funny bits with J. Jonah Jamison…Flint Marko/Sandman was very well done…the Gwen Stacy stuff was pretty pointless…good flick, but not as good as Spidey 2…they should take 3-4 years off from the series.

Oh, and about my subject line…Miss Winker at the dog park.

Goat Meat Taco

…mmmm, cabritos

More Thoughts On Roleplaying

Over on RPGNet, there is a post about what RPG’s will be popular 20 years from now. As expected, D&D/CoC/Hero/WoD/Gurps top the lists, and I can see the logic of folks thinking that way. Personally, I think face to face tabletop RPGing will be an even tinier niche hobby in 2027.

What surprised me about the RPGNet thread was how few people think that computer RPGs will still not have become able to match the interactivity and sociality of today’s RPGs. Everyone was saying “no way”. Are they on drugs? In the next 20 years, there will be advances in AI, graphics, interfacing, game design and general gameplay that we can’t even guess at now. I’m thinking that by 2027 (when I’ll be in my early 70’s), you’ll be able to put on some sort of VR outfit and jack into a gameworld that is either totally open ended or heavily modified by your GM. Open endedness IS the way of future CRPG’s, make no mistake about it. So is easy modification by users. Both are already very prevelant in games like the Elder Scrolls series and games like Half Life and Grand Theft Auto.

Personally, I can hardly wait to put on my Ultra High Def/Total Surround Sound/Motion Sensitive/Rumble Pack outfit and kick some CRPG ass.

Thunderboy And The Agents Of Madness

…time for a little boom boom

Sssstuuuuuuuuuffffffff

1: Jerry Falwell died. Good! I’m sorry the motherfucker didn’t suffer more. If he had never done anything worse than help get that fucking scumbag Reagan elected, he would still be deserved of a trip to Hell.

2: Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson are teaming up to do three Tintin movies using motion capture CGI similar to what was used to create Gollum in LOTR. I am so there to see these flicks.

3: Ok, so despite a pitiful turnout in the poll by y’all, here is the final chapter on…

Violet LaFlamme, Crusading Reporter

Violet LaFlamme is a 26 year old reporter for the Daily Voice. She stands 5’10” tall. Her hair is long and red. Her eyes are emerald green. Well built and leggy, Violet’s cute “girl next door” face doesn’t quite mesh with her “hello sailor” body, but you won’t hear any man complaining. Violet typically dresses in conservative skirts and blouses, which are worn under a trenchcoat when she is out working a story. You will always find some sort of green ribbon in her hair.

Appearence and Personality: Violet is very dedicated to both her work and helping the less fortunate. She’s also a tough cookie and a bit of a tomboy. She has a goofy, sometimes dark sense of humor and, when provoked, a wicked sharp tongue. Violet is also very smart, altho, as with her looks, she is rather unaware of it. She is normally an exceptionally healthy person. Violet has been known to let both her curiosity and her stubborness get her in trouble.

Although she dresses well, Violet is a bit of a slob in most other respects. Her apartment will never win any Good Housekeeping awards. She hates to cook. An avid animal lover, she shares her home with two dogs (Boris & Bela), two cats (Bette & Joan), a Scarlet Macaw (Charlie), and a pair of turtles (Holmes & Watson).

When she’s not working, Violet can often be found out at various nightspots, ranging from reporter hangout bars (The Byline Saloon) to high class nightspots (The Cobalt Club) to Broadway shows. She has no shortage of male friends to escort her.

Family & Friends/Contacts: Violet comes from a big family. Both her parents are living, as are her 3 sisters and 4 brothers. All of her grandparents are still with us and she has lots of aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews.

Violet has some very good friends and trusted contacts who help her in her role as a crusading reporter. Number one among them is City Councilman Bill Wynoski, who keeps her informed about the goings on ay city hall. If anything smells of corruption, he gets word to Violet.

Among Vi’s other friends are several cops (ranging from beat cops to detectives), a couple of other reporters (including a well known celebrity gossip columnist), a state senator or two, the masked vigilante known as The Spectre, world trotting do gooder Captain Hercules, quite a number of people in the transportation/shipping industry and a network of hobos, bums and other street people that Violet calls “The West Side Irregulars”.

Enemies: As you might expect, Violet has made a few enemies, too. At the very top of this list is Frank “The Fisherman” Capelli, former boss of all the cities crime families and now a resident of death row. The only reason his attempts to kill Violet have failed is that they keep running afoul of…

…Mr. Shen, the leader of the Chinese “businessmen’s association”. He wants to be the one to kill Violet…if he can ever stop looking over his shoulder for The Spectre.

A number of politicians on the state level have no love for Vi, including the Lt. Governor and the State Highways Comissioner.

As you might expect, several of her fellow reporters are jealous of Violet’s success.

Finally, she has made a few enemies among the legal and medical professions for exposing some of their illicit activities.

Skills: Investigation, Research, Fast Talk, Interrogation, Pro Writer, Photography, Spot Hidden, Fashion Sense, Auto Mechanic, Irish Literature, Running, Hiding, Climbing, Pistol Shooting, Seduction, Streetwise, Animal Empathy, Swimming

The Startling Adventures Of Doctor Tempest And The Army Of The Dead

…from the June, 1897 issue

Some Thoughts On Roleplaying Games

As I was looking over my collection of computer games, it dawned on me that in most games, it is the sandbox mode that I play most frequently. Oh sure, the pre-made scenarios are fun and the main adventures in CRPG’s like “The Elder Scrolls” are cool, but just exploring a world is often way more fun.

So, armed with that thought, I got to thinking about a totally sandbox type face to face RPG. One in which both the players and the GM start out with a blank (or nearly so) map and fill in the details as they go along. And I mean ALL the details…from what the geography of a given area is to the local ecology to politics to how magic or technology works to…well, damned near everything.

Of course, the game would come with a truckload of useful tools/charts/ideas/etc, but they wouldn’t be overly specific about anything. Defining the world would be up to the players. Naturally, you’d want a rules system that was extremely flexible and you might even want to go with a GMless system.

So, My Gentle Readers, any thoughts on this?

One Sad Kinkajou

…I don’t know why he’s sad

Weekend Update

Well, I didn’t go see Spider-man 3 like I’d hoped. Saturday was Summer Curryfest 2007, with our friend Sharon visiting us for the first time since she moved up to northern Washington back in August. Throw in a bit of gardening (during which I seem to have pulled the hell out of a muscle on my lower left abdominal area) into the mix and Saturday was a goner.

Today was gardening, shopping, taking Princess Daisy on a very long walk (about 2.5 miles), more gardening and some other chores. Result: too tired for the movies. We’ll shoot for Tuesday night.

I called my mom today and wished her a happy Mothers Day. She had just gotten a visit and gifts from my niece, Molly, and was awaiting my brother and his wife for a lunch date.

Mom had a doctor visit on Friday and, aside from a bit of arthritis (which she has had for at least the last 30 years) and a touch of high blood pressure, she’s in great shape for a woman a couple of weeks shy of turning 79 years old.

I bought Grace a cd and promised her a nice dinner out once the dreaded Final Exam Monster has gone away (next week).

And now, I’m off to play a bit of Civ III and thence to bed.

Groovy Golden Gophers

…cool, man

Well, folks, here is the semi-final poll for our creation of Violet LaFlamme. I’ll use the results of this poll to create the final poll.

Note: We’ll assume that, being a reporter, Violet has the Investigation, Research, Fast Talk, Interrogation, Pro Writer, Photography and Spot Clue skills. Now let’s see what other skills she has (and they need not be related to her job).

The Wackily Funny, Yet Somewhat Disturbing, Story Of Mostly Purple Patty And The Trip To GenCon

…costarring her good buddy, Becky Turnipwater

Health Updates

Doc: Leg is 90% healed. Otherwise, in good shape.
Grace: Tired from work & school, but healthy
Daisy: Healthy, happy & energetic
Winker: In heat, so not going to the dog parks. Otherwise, sweet and puppylike

And before anyone asks, we can’t have Winker fixed due to her having a heart murmur that rates a 4 out of 6. If they put her under to fix her, it would probably kill her.

Garden Update

The weather has heated up and now even more plants are blooming and growing. Saturday will see me transplanting many veggies into their final containers (before the start of Summer Curryfest 2007 later that afternoon) and starting some new seeds. I’ll try to post some garden pix on Monday.

Gaming Update

I’m still mulling over a couple of games I might run for my buddies at GenCon. There will be a Toon game for sure, but the second game is still uncertain. Right now I’m leaning towards something pulpy.

As for playing games, I’m gonna try to make this GenCon a “Doc plays demos” festival. There are a bunch of rules systems & settings out there that I want to at least give a try.

And now, I’m off to Dr, Yen’s Dermatological E Z Bake Oven Of Doom.

Pogundamaguna

…huh?

Pulp Character Creation Poll Results

Violet has some very good friends and trusted contacts who help her in her role as a crusading reporter. Number one among them is City Councilman Bill Wynoski, who keeps her informed about the goings on ay city hall. If anything smells of corruption, he gets word to Violet.

Among Vi’s other friends are several cops (ranging from beat cops to detectives), a couple of other reporters (including a well known celebrity gossip columnist), a state senator or two, the masked vigilante known as The Spectre, world trotting do gooder Captain Hercules, quite a number of people in the transportation/shipping industry and a network of hobos, bums and other street people that Violet calls “The West Side Irregulars”.

As you might expect, Violet has made a few enemies, too. At the very top of this list is Frank “The Fisherman” Capelli, former boss of all the cities crime families and now a resident of death row. The only reason his attempts to kill Violet have failed is that they keep running afoul of…

…Mr. Shen, the leader of the Chinese “businessmen’s association”. He wants to be the one to kill Violet…if he can ever stop looking over his shoulder for The Spectre.

A number of politicians on the state level have no love for Vi, including the Lt. Governor and the State Highways Comissioner.

As you might expect, several of her fellow reporters are jealous of Violet’s success.

Finally, she has made a few enemies among the legal and medical professions for exposing some of their illicit activities.

Violet comes from a big family. Both her parents are living, as are her 3 sisters and 4 brothers. All of her grandparents are still with us and she has lots of aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews.

Perilous Times For Dr. Silkmelon

…and it’s all because of the meatball gun

Stuff-O-Gram

Once again, Heroes was some great fuckin’ television. Two more episodes to go. Be still my geeky heart.

My goodness, freshly washed and dried dogs are just a huggable sweet smelling pleasure.

I’ll post the results of the latest Pulp Character Creation Poll tomorrow.

Didn’t get to go see Spider-man 3 this weekend, but should be going to see it this week.

Due to not having a full gaming group on Sunday, the players present and I created a late 19th century American small town, partly by using Campaign Cartographer. I will use said town in our next RPG series.

100 days until GenCon!

And now I’m off to bed.

The Secret Meadow Of The Nekkid Hippies

…last visited in 1975

Health Update

My leg is greatly improved, but Grace still has me restricted to sitting with it elevated. Besides being somewhat boring (it’s sunny out and my garden is calling to me!), my ass (what little there is of it)is in danger of assuming the shape of this recliner seat! Going to see “Spiderman 3” has been postponed until at least Monday night. Since arguing with Dr. Grace is pointless, here I sit, blogging for your reading pleasure.

More Pix

Another pic of our front garden. This one is from 2005…late spring, I think.
Many of these plants have been moved or replaced.

Another pic, from our first year at this house.

Pulp Character Creation Poll

So far, we have the basics of Violet’s job, looks and personality. Now let’s find out a few more things.

Dead Hamsters Don’t Bounce

…or so I’m told

Doc Update

My leg is doing better. As usual, the antibiotics are working well. I’m going into work for 2-3 hours, then it’s back here for more fun sitting with my leg elevated. Man, this blows. Monday, I’ll be back at work, tho maybe not for the whole day.

And just cos I love y’all, here’s a pic of the east side of my garden/front yard from a couple of years ago. It looks way different now, but back then, the California Poppies were rampant.

Harry Potter And The Buggering Broomstick

…it’s a particularly nasty spell

So I’m over on RPGnet and I see this… http://forum.rpg.net/showthread.php?t=324535 …which naturally got me thinking. Part of my reply was…

Naturally, the Empire of D20 (based upon the Realm of D&D) would be huge, tho slowly fragmenting into independent baronies.

The Land of the Vampire Storytellers would be pretty big and a hotbed of behind the scenes wheeling and dealing between the various power groups (Vampires, Mages, Werewolves, etc.).

The Indie Archepelago would see new islands popping up regularly.

So, what else belongs on the map?

You may now start commenting. Once the map gets big enough, I’ll create it using Campaign Cartographer.

Pulp Character Creation

The personality poll got a whole bunch of similar responses, so here is our personality profile of Violet LaFlamme.

Violet is very dedicated to both her work and helping the less fortunate. She’s also a toughcookie and a bit of a tomboy. She has a goofy, sometimes dark sense of humor and, when provoked, a wicked sharp tongue. Violet is also very smart, altho, as with her looks, she is rather unaware of it. She is normally an exceptionally healthy person. Violet has been known to let both her curiosity and her stubborness get her in trouble.

Although she dresses well, Violet is a bit of a slob in most other respects. Her apartment will never win any Good Housekeeping awards. She hates to cook. An avid animal lover, she shares her home with two dogs (Boris & Bela), two cats (Bette & Joan), a Scarlet Macaw (Charlie), and a pair of turtles (Holmes & Watson).

When she’s not working, Violet can often be found out at various nightspots, ranging from reporter hangout bars (The Byline Saloon) to high class nightspots (The Cobalt Club) to Broadway shows. She has no shortage of male friends to escort her.

Next Poll: We find out Violet’s skills and connections.

What The Fuck Do You Mean “Beer Is Not A Food Group”?

…tell that to a college student

Doc Update

1: I’m home with another fucking leg infection. Taking antibiotics and elevating the leg. Gonna miss work today and tomorrow, which our finances can fucking ill afford, but then, I’d rather not die from a rampant infection. Man, this leg shit is getting old.

2: Pulp character poll will go up tomorrow…or maybe tonight. Hell, I’ve got plenty of free time, seeing as how I’m stuck in this fuckin’ recliner with my leg propped up.

3: Daisy kept waking Grace up last night, wanting to go walkies or just goof off. Of course, her waking up also woke up Winker, who in her perpetual puppy mind always wants love or play. Needless to say, Grace is in a foul temper today. I pity her co-workers.

4: Watched Peter Jackson’s King Kong on Sunday. For me, it doesn’t stand up to repeat viewing. Too damned long…too many actors…too few real thrills…and Kong looks too much like a regular mountain gorilla. He should have been modified to look unlike any real species of ape.

5: It’s raining today, which means that the rampant growth/blooming in my garden is REALLY gonna take off once the sun returns.

And now, time to snooze a bit.