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Beemer

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The Usual [Jan. 28th, 2008|07:43 pm]
Beemer
Last week was Tom O.'s birthday, so there were boardgames at his place on Friday night. It was made more interested by me getting stranded at work because Emma (the minivan) wouldn't start when it was time to come home. Wouldn't turn over, nothing. Just click when turning the key. It was too dark to see anything, plus cold and windy, so Greg came and got me and we just left her there to deal with later.

First game, I played Pirate's Cove with Tom and Rich and Noah, and I won! The interesting thing about it is that it's all about fighting people to get good loot, but really one of the best strategies is to concentrate on avoiding combat and picking up the not-quite-best piles of loot uncontested. Of course, the reason I won is because Tom played a card that made me split all loot that turn 50/50 with him and the only option that wouldn't give him a net big advantage because of rounding (in his favor) was to go fight the legendary pirates (NPC adversary), which I did, and beat them, and got a big pile of victory points off it. So maybe I don't actually know what I'm talking about.

After that was Year of the Dragon (me, Chris, Matt, Bryan J.), which is an interesting little China-themed game about managing your province through a sequence of disasters. Well-designed and filled with tough decisions. I didn't do very well (I think I fought too hard against the first couple events and got behind on building and money), but I enjoyed it.

Saturday was kung_fu_monkey's successful test for yellow belt in Tang Soo Do, which he blogged about in his journal. I'm quite proud of him; he really puts a lot into it and is good at is as a result. We went out for breakfast with Bryree & Bill & Shelley (& their son Kevin & his (girl-?)friend) afterwards.

Sunday I ran errands, which included driving up to Boulder (to get the movie for movie night, among other things) and checking the car, and lo and behold, she started just fine on the first try. Hesitated on the second. Didn't start on the third. Started fine on the fourth and fifth. So I have no idea at all what might be going on. (The usual cause of not starting is this cable to the starter motor getting knocked loose by a curb stop, but it looks like the mechanic I took her to tied it up and out of the way, woo!) I'll mention it next time she goes in for maintenance, I suppose. I took the bus in to work and drove home this evening, no problems at all.

Had a big pile of mushrooms (fresh shiitake, I think, but I'm not sure because they were just labelled "mushrooms" at POM) so for dinner I made some tasty Japanese clear soup with brown wild rice and mushrooms. Plus some fried tofu bits, which were also tasty despite the first batch being a little burnt. Bad Day at Black Rock was... interesting. During the first half, I really felt like I was watching space aliens, because none of the characters behaved like normal human beings, and their dialogue was all weird and artificial in that '50s/'60s way. Plus, it's hard for us to take Ernest Borgnine seriously as a bad guy, though I'm sure it was different when the movie came out. I did like the molotov cocktail at the end, though.

I sort of feel like I ought to apologize for not posting about anything suited for deeper discussion lately; my excuse is that work is busy and the rest of my brain is filled with fiction, so I wouldn't be doing right by y'all if I did start up anything because I wouldn't follow through...

But I will say that linguistics has come up in conversation a few times recently, and if you don't know much about it, you owe it to yourself to go find a good introduction to the subject (I recommend Pinker's The Language Instinct) and read up on it. It's amazing all the things you know and understand about language on a totally unconscious level.
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