My Kobo e-Reader is Suddenly Useful

Archaic monster that I am, I prefer paper books, and I’ll spare you the whys. I also have an e-reader. It is a small and entirely outdated Kobo Mini. Here it is:

Kobo Mini with 5
Kobo Mini with 5″ screen

It’s got a small screen, has no light, it’s slow, has only 2GB of memory, an e-ink screen two generations behind the times, and it’s not a Kindle. It’s perfect. Again, I’ll spare you the whys, except to say that it serves my basic needs and addresses a few dislikes I have for the Kindle. And it fits in my back pocket in a pinch.
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Old Man Blog: Barthes on Toys

I’m a dad now, and when I think of things, it’s usually with the tinge of what sort of horrible legacy my actions or thoughts will have on my daughter. I just dropped a small amount of cash onto some nice modern tactile BPA and gluten-free toys for her, with nary a grumble on my end. Of course I want the best for her. And I tremble at the threat of maybe providing slightly less.

I have the grumblings of my elders to fall back on instead. Here’s Roland Barthes, on the meaning of modern toys in his time.

First of all, French toys in Barthes’ time were apparently miniaturized replicas of objects in the adult world, the effect being:

…reduced copies of human objects, as if in the eyes of the public the child was, all told, nothing but a smaller man, a homunculus to whom must be supplied objects of his own size.

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Notes on a Tinned Fish – Mackerel Fillets in Tom Yam Sauce

Mackerel Fillets in Tom Yam Sauce comes in an attractive, full color cardboard box.

This tin of mackerel fillets was discovered in 99 Ranch, one of a chain of Asian markets in California. It was about $2. I consumed it atop a bed of instant tapioca noodles, which came with a dehydrated vegetable seasoning packet and a sachet of XO sauce. Continue reading

Zombie in My Pocket – Let’s Play


Are zombies passe yet? Yes, they are. Some time ago, this game captured my imagination, and apparently I kept a short log of one play-through. I found it, sitting in my drafts, dating waaaaay back to 2008. I chopped up some old photos I took and put a wrap on it. This is me, playing the free-to-print solo game Zombie In My Pocket.

With a few small decks of cards and a notepad, you role-play an intrepid adventurer trying to stop a zombie uprising by locating and burying an idol in a randomly-generated, besieged house. You must do this by midnight. It’s a roguelike in pocket format.

You do this by laying down square tiles, each representing a room in the house. Each turn, 10 minutes in game-time passes, and an event happens by drawing a card. You might find a weapon, you might fight some zombies, or you can take a moment to rest and gain some health back. In all, you have 18 turns to finish the game.

In my experience, it was a pretty well-balanced game, giving you maybe 40%-60% odds of winning each time, with room for tactical choices. A really nicely-designed gem, and free, to boot. Read, and enjoy the purple prose.

Three Hours to Midnight


9:00pm – At the center of the terror lies a house. Continue reading

Delta Fist Archive Opened (Arma II Missions)

Enter the Fist. Yes, that’s ripped from Hunter S. Thompson’s “Gonzo” party poster.

I’m creating a new set of missions for Arma II: Operation Arrowhead, forming a loose campaign, for my friends’ weekly games night, and hosting them here. A new page is available to host these missions at the Delta Fist Arma Mission Map Case.

I’m a horrifically lazy person, so these will all (or nearly all) be created using the wonderful tool PlannedAssault, with a few minor hand-edits here and there. My goal is to spit out one a week or so, plus a dumb graphic to go with each one. They’ll march up and down the avenues of Chernarus, or at least the areas supported by PlannedAssault.

These missions are of course, all free. See the page for more details! Go there now.