Saturday, October 23, 2010

[Blogging] 12 in 7!

12 new followers in 7 days. That's over a 40% increase in calculable readership in just a week's time.

I'm quoted on Brent's blog- TWICE! [Not that I'm stalking...]

I got hit as an honorable mention at  iHOP's Haiku contest (and not at all shameless beg for content), made Weekly TopX and came in as a "winner "(?) of the most embarrassing story gig there too.

I'm seeing a lot of wonderful, insightful and generous commenting. I've been exposed to some fantastic writers, thinkers, gamers and just cool guys [with a gal or two thrown in there, too] over the week or so. I'm trying to comment on all of your great posts- I may have to get to you still. I promise I'll get there!

I'm beyond flattered and honored that you're checking out my little corner of the internet.

I have a really fun topic for Weekly Whimsy tomorrow, so stay tuned! 
Please feel free to drop me a note and tell me how you found me, what you like, and what you want to see more of [totally ended with a preposition and I just don't care].

be well...


Friday, October 22, 2010

[WOD] Eile- Snapshots

Freeze Frame- J. Geils Band 
These little vignettes are best imagined as a black and white photos or short movies; just a quick glimpse into Eile's current life in Austin.
Picture 1-
The camera has captured Eile from a side-long and front ways angle, with the background in soft focus She could be anywhere- a bus or train station, restaurant or kitchenette of a small apartment. There's both a sense of mystery and familiarity to the shot. It's a rarely candid and intimate moment.

Eile is casually clumped low in a high back chair, her legs crossed and thrown over a table or bench in front of her. Her feet are shockingly bare, with her toenails delicately painted. Her head is thrown back and resting against the back of the chair, exposing her long and vulnerable neck.

In the hand nearest the camera, aggressively held in a fashion reminiscent of men and cons, is a lit cigarette, seemingly moving towards her mouth. Eile's eyes are closed in a tranquil and pensive fashion. Her lips are slightly open, and a cloud of hazy, dream-like smoke is caught drifting like motes in the air around her face. 

Picture 2-
The shot sees Eile as she's sunbathing atop the roof of a building. Despite the monchrome of the photo, Eile's supple nude back gleams in the sunlight. She's in the midst of turning from her back to her stomach; and her weight primarily rests on the set of her hips nearest the viewer.The dark bottoms of her bathing suit stretch across the skin of her rear in wonderful ways. The leg further from the camera is slightly bent at the knee, pushing her weight over.

One arm is under her, resting up to the elbow on the roof, and the other arm is gently bent out, with her finger crooked, beckoning to someone off camera. 

There's something sensual and hauntingly akin to an animal about to pounce on an unseen victim to the scene. 

Picture 3-
This is a long shot, taken from behind Eile's back. A sofa, sitting on the edge of a curb, sits beyond Eile in the foreground. Eile holds up a tailor's tape longways, and it's unclear if she's measuring the couch or the distant horizon seen at the outside edge of the picture.

The last picture in the series is in color. It's a source of inspiration and consideration I use often. The spirit and essence of Eile's joie de vivre just jumps off the page to me here, and the clothes and styling are spot on for how I imagine my Changeling girl. 

Thanks, Mondo!

Hope you enjoy. Look for more Eile related goodies next Friday!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

[40K] A List I Don't Hate

Four 40K posts this week- I must really be getting into it!

I worked on making a list I don't hate, and came up with something I like quite a lot. Additionally, I might possibly be able to proxy this. One of my enablers-er- FRIENDS- I meant friend! thinks I could probably borrow what I don't have through The Dude.

There are a couple of legalities questions (can a character with dual lightning claws wear a combat shield, can I have a Cru squad without Neophytes) but here we go.

HQ- Marshall
Dual Lightning Claws
Combat Shield -120

HQ- Command Squad
1 Sergeant, Terminator Honors, Lightning Claw
9 Squad Members, Terminator Honors,  Thunder Hammers (5), Combat Shield (4), Furious Charge, Crusader Seals (10)- 525

EC- AAC- 140


Crusader Squad 1
8 Initiates- Plasma gun, missile launcher
2 Neophytes, Shotgun & CCW
Rhino -214

Crusader Squad 2 & 3
10 Initiates 10 Crusader Seals
6 Neophytes
Missile Launcher- 500

Comes up to 1499.

My enabler-FRIEND- wondered why I didn't try to go for 1850, which is what the local league is currently running. Aside from not knowing the rules well enough yet, I don't have enough figures to proxy for that size army. But those are all excuses. Honestly? I'm not ready to play in the league, especially at that point level. I don't mind losing, but I'd like to have a chance.

Again, send along comments, criticisms and general 'you stink and this is why' . I promise to listen and even try to learn from it all.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

[WOD] Austin By Night- Session 9 as Eile

The fixture in the city of lust
What the hell's your name?
What's your pleasure and what's your pain?
Do you dream too much?
-   Green Day, Homecoming   [Part 1: The death of St. Jimmy]

Somebody get me out of here
Get me the fuck right out of here
- Green Day, Homecoming    [Part 2: East 12th St.]
Persona vitae of the scenes:
Eile- Changeling (Myself)
Bruce- Hunter (M)
TK- Geist (E)
New Character- Changeling (B.B.) [Ogre seeming, Gargantuan kith]
Raaf -Werewolf (B)
Avere- Changeling (K)

Last session ended with Eile in the paddy wagon along with her boyfriend (TK), her roommate (Bruce) and her potential kidnapper [new player, character name not revealed at this time] due to the serepticious suggestion made by Coyotoe Joe to the police.

Eile quickly deduces the new Changeling was under the mental influence of an Other (Gentry) and realizes he's absolutely fresh out of Arcadia, the place she's been trying to ignore for over a year now. She quietly advises the Ogre not to say anything while the other two men are talking to each other. She now has a way to influence each of them in some way, and she hopes, a way to get out of the mess as well.

They are taken off the paddy wagon and taken aside one by one. Eile is offered the following, after being read her Miranda rights- twice:

Look, we just want to know what happened. Please answer a few questions and if everything checks out, you'll be free to go.

Eile gently declines to speak, instead pointing, nodding and gesturing during the intial processing. She's put into an interview room and waits a while. Shortly after, Raaf walks in. He begins asking her questions, and she continues her silence.

[Completely unknown to me, at least one other player did the EXACT SAME THING.]

Raaf is more than a little frustrated and decides to try to find a way to make Eile look guilty for various crimes- including arson, embezzelment, insurance fraud and murder. Eile is more than a little amused by all this- with the exception of murder, she actually accomplished or contemplated each of those crimes in recent memory. [Most of them in backstory.]

Raaf finally brings out his big guns- he shows some pictures of murder victims, one of which is Eile's neighbor and Eile believes [right or wrong I don't know], a regular customer. Eile is offended by the idea of a source of tips drying up, and is mystified at Raaf's thinking that she'd destroy a steady revenue source. She absolutely fails a willpower check to stay quiet [Hey, I'm playing her, and my name IS Loquacious] and begins discussing the situation. Raaf has offended her, and he is a member of David's family. Eile has absolutely no respect for David whatsoever, and that disrespect bleeds over to Raaf. The interview quickly turns into Eile using every question as a chance to mock Raaf in some way (some much more obvious than others) while still maintaining as much of the truth as possible without explaining much at all.

Raaf doesn't believe anything she's saying, and her taunting only causes him to be even more hostile to her. He takes her to a holding cell, where Bruce and the New Changeling are already being held. She finds out that the Ogre listened to and followed her instructions, and that Bruce is being coached on what to say. The things that Bruce is being encouraged to say could easily fit with Eile being framed, and the Gargantuan has said nothing. Eile tries to come up with a plan, but realizes she has liabilities when she needs serious advantages. She makes an offhand remark that leads Bruce to believe she's strictly using TK and doesn't have any feelings for him, as well as dismisses the severity of the situation. All the while, New Guy is quietly wondering if Bruce has to go and if the cuffs can or should be broken. [Eile says no to both -at least for now.] They wait a while as TK is being questioned.

Eile asks to talk to Raaf again, and tries to imply that everything he's said about her is right. Eile's approach is rough, overtly direct, and very specific in details in regards to some aspects of her potential tale. Raaf doesn't seem to take that bait either, and Eile goes back to the cell.

[Unknown to Eile, while she is talking to Bruce, the new guy and Raaf, TK is off spilling his guts to the police about everything that happened- dragon and all.]

TK is brought into the holding cell area, and New Guy is taken back out.  There's a little more conversation. Eile spends some time fishing for information, and then asks if TK had anything to do with the murders. [Yes, she's got balls of steel.] He of course denies it, but Eile sees Bruce's reaction and knows the effect she was after has been achieved.

A little while later, Raaf comes down and wants to talk to Eile. He pulls her aside and tells her that the New Guy needs her  - for two specific things. He needs her to give him permission to speak, and he needs Eile to give him a name. Eile asks if she cann talk to him, and she goes to the other worm.

Eiele comes to the door and sees Avere in a chair facing the back of the room. The big guy is facing her, and Eile hesitates at the doorway for a long moment as she debates dealing with Avere.[There's a very cool, hard to describe, completely non-verbal moment between Eile and the New Changeling here while Eile debates.]  She finally enters, and before she has a moment to sit or speak to the new Changeling, Avere chimes in, demanding that Eile give him permission to speak.

Eile asks the Ogre if he wants to speak, and he indicates through writing that it's Avere that wants him to be able to talk. Another question and answer reveals that New Guy only wants to talk if Eile wants him to. Avere badgers away at Eile, trying to insist that he be allowed to speak for himself. Eile tells Avere very seriously- "I don't have to do anything". Avere isn't phased, she declares that it's the "right thing to do". Avere then goes on, in her somewhat childish and naive way, talking about the "dream out there" (meaning outside of jail) and how the new guy won't be able to function if he can't talk. Eile snaps- "I don't dream, and I don't want to; if it means I turn out like that" [implying Avere]. Another comment makes it obvious- the new Changeling WON'T speak until Eile releases him from his prohibition, and only if she wants him to. Eile now knows she has control over his entire world, and is shaken to her core, flashing back to moments in Arcadia. Eile debates and considers what to do, and nearly loses clarity again.

[An important note on the sequence of events and what Eile considered.

Eile was told that someone needed her- in a way that offered her power and control. For Eile, this was a huge and scary responsibility. She wasn't sure how to handle it or how to react. She arrives to find Avere, who she doesn't like or trust, "meddling" in her private domain. [Having one is rare enough for Eile- this is probably the first time she is in control of anything since her escape from the Hedge.] She then finds out that the new Changeling is literally hers to control; which is heady and horrifying. She also learns that Avere has obvious and easily manipulated desires, which flash across Eile's mental control panel in bright displays.Eile's greed and hope for something to call her own are in a vicious duel for Eile's heart as she considers. Eile is literally forced to chose between something -anything- to have as her own and refusing to be like the Fae.]

Eile releases the new fellow, and the two talk for a few moments. In this discussion, names and their power are discussed, as well as the fact that Eile's name is not of her choosing. [This is an important clue for a later scene I want to do] New Changeling wants a name- any name; just not the one he had before he was Taken. Eile admits he reminds her of someone, and he allows her to call him by the name of the person in question. Thus, Terrance is born.

The two are sent back to the holding cell for a while, and then later released for good.

This ends the night for the most part.Other things happened outside of my scenes, but I don't really know anything about them.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

[40K] Be Awesome- Do Good!

I'm pretty sure that most 40K guys that read here already read Galaxy In Flames, but BigJim, the Mastermind behind Killzone, has suffered a pretty huge loss. As chronicled earlier this week, a large part of his massive, amazing, fun and deeply personal Soul Reavers army was stolen out of his truck.

Magilla Gurilla at Table Top War is leading the charge to help replace the missing figures- so if you have spare Chaos dudes you're willing to offer up to BigJim, please head on over to the collection point and see what you can do to help BigJim out!

Monday, October 18, 2010

[40K] The List (for now)

As promised, I came back with a legal list (at least I think it is).

I need to so some more work, but I have a1500 point list.
The problem? I - absolutely- completely- totally- immeasurably- without remorse- fucking HATE it. The only thing I like on it even a little is the Dread. The EC isn't terrible, but I wish I could make the whole thing more coherent.

Why bother posting it? Because it's some where to start. I'm trying to dial out the bad advice from the very, very smart (special thanks to nikephoros over at Bringer of Victory and Weinas at Indy40K) as well as get a feel for what I like and what I don't. Also, this list is one that I have almost enough models available to proxy and test. I would only need to borrow about 7 Scouts for Neophytes, and we'd just have to say all the bits/weapons present on the models were the ones on the list.

So here it is. Comments, suggestions and absolute ass-ripping are more than welcome, I'm willing to start all over and not sweat it. If there's any glaring illegalities, lemme know, please. Also, I have no real sense of how lists are supposed to be written out, so I'm going to do it the way that makes sense to me and you can help me in the comments, right?

HQ- Commander:
Artificer Armor
Terminator Armor
Frag Grenade
Holy Orbs of Antioch - 126pts

HQ: Terminator Command Squad
5 models
Furious charge
Missile launcher
Assault Cannon-263 pts

Emperor's Champion
Accept Any Challenge -140 pts

Elite: Dreadnaught
Twin linked Las cannon
Heavy Flamer
Tank Hunter
Extra Armor
Smoke Launcher-188 Pts

Troops : Crusader Squad (x2)
10 Initiates
6 Neophytes
Power Fist
Frag & Krak grenades - 578

Troops: Crusader Squad
10 Initiates
Power Fist
Frag & krak Grenades- 205

[40K] A Newer Player's Q's: Options

I have a couple sample lists finally. A buddy from the game store helped me get started- I was pretty much missing the point when trying to build my lists and was coming way -way- WAY under. I simply didn't understand or know how to operate all the dang options and wargear BT present.

Once I got that out of the way, there came the question of- what STYLE list did I want to run?

I personally see several options- a pure "fluff" list with chaplains, holy sigils, blessings, and so on; a foot list; a fast list; and a small but mighty combination list. I'm sure there are others, or better twists on those- but that's what I see.

For my sample list, I really wanted to go with the fluff- that's why I like the Black Templar so much. They're so incredibly evocative and offer so many options for naming, details and thoughtful touches. I chose a chaplain for my HQ and worked the rest of the list from there.

Before I share my lists- onto the questions. How do you handle picking options or wargear for your armies? Do you try to make things fit with your theme, or effectiveness, or some combination thereof? Do you have a lot of choices, or are you stuck with things that you don't like? Am I crazy, or is 100 points of wargear way to friggin much?!?!?!?!?!


OH, I am so glad I tried to post this!

I just went through typing out the whole list I came up with (with my friend's help)- I was pretty excited about the ideas and options I had in front of me- when I realized...

I forgot The Emperor's Champion.


I'll be back later today with a legal list, I swear!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

[Weekly Whimsy] International Suit Up Day (Part 2)

Welcome to Weekly Whimsy! Discussing delivery of the debonaire, dissing the douche that doesn't dress, diving into the depths of the dearth and death of determination, derring do, and drive.

[Love my weekly word-nerd fit. On to today's topic!]

Every girl's crazy 'bout a sharp dressed man- ZZ Top, Sharp Dressed Man

Earlier this week, Dave over at CrewShakenNotStirred talked about International Suit Up Day. He approached the subject from a lighthearted and tongue-in-cheek. His post was well received and he was able to get a group of folks to admit their foibles as former slobs.

His closing statement was meant as a rally cry, a shot of morale- "Suit Up. Score Chicks. Win Games!"

The "Suit Up" portion of his was clear in point and purpose. I love the sentiment and would like to see more of my local crew take it to heart. Dave did a great illustration on the benefits of better grooming, and his bumbler-turned-Barney was easy to identify and commisserate with in retrospective amusement.

It was the brandishment to "Score Chicks" that was slightly lacking, and I'd like to step up to the challenge. While Dave was lighthearted and jovial in his delivery, my tone will be a bit more sisterly, wise, and slightly serious. A strong nod to Chumby's advice is needed here- "Get A Job" and "Hit The Gym" are not bad words of wisdom at all; definitely worthy of attention.

Dave and Chumby don't do enough for their fellow dudes. They approach the subject, and make pointed comments in the general area, but miss the heart of the matter. So I propose a primer- primarily from the perspective of the pursued. So as a favor to my comrades in dice, I offer:

The Do's and Don'ts of Dudes

Do- Suit Up. Dave is right- an improved appearance and the following self confidence he discusses makes a world of difference in the way a dude is perceived by the world. Self confidence and all it encompasses can make improvements to the general nature of the dude in question, benefiting him in a multitude of ways.

Do- Get Out of the House. Dave suggests getting off the internet and interacting with your pals at the pub, watching telly and drinking brews. Certainly a social life with the guys is a step in the right direction. But if it's finding a chick you seek, hanging with your friends won't get you very far. You need to

Go Where The Girls Are

Where is this magical land of females? Is there some hidden door you have to make a 5+ roll to find? Does it smell funny there?

Amazing thing to hear, but girls are people too. They have interests, hobbies, passions and pursuits just as well as the guys. As I mentioned in my "On Shoes" post, it doesn't hurt at all to learn about the very things that ladies enjoy.

Unfortunately, every girl is different. The more you know the girl in question, the more you can personalize the conversation- and the better off you'll do with said lady. However, there are some things that are somewhat safe- much like sports, cars and guns for guys; there are a few things you can assume are good topics of discussion with the female kind.

These topics include (but aren't limited to) dancing, cooking, creative crafting, home decor and furnishings, movies & television, popular books, and music.

If you're hoping to find a specific kind of girl, you're in luck. Get involved in a group where a girl of that kind is likely to congregate, and you'll probably have some luck. Very importantly, Geeky girls are becoming less of a rare breed and are easily found at anime clubs, libraries, drama groups, Mystery Theater troups,  and even the occasional game store.

Going to and getting involved in activities outside of the pub and the local 40K night can be a good way to meet a girl.

Once you find a girl worth your time and attention, there's a VERY important point you need to heed.

DON'T treat her like prey. Girls, as delicious as they are, don't like being treated like they are dinner (at least not until much later). Be aware of your surroundings. Pay attention to her, but not so much that she can obviously feel that she is your sole focus. I'm sure you've all witnessed the guy going in for the kill- zooming in on the "target" to the oblivion of the rest of the room, only to be batted down.

Nine times out of ten, it has nothing to do with what he said. It's almost always about HOW he said it. If he said it while crowding her personal space, while stepping on people behind him because he was so focused on her he didn't see them, or while blocking her from an exit;  he's out of luck.

Now you have a girl who you'd like to pay attention to, and she hasn't rejected you. There's just one more important thing to know, and the rest should work itself out.

DO Have Ambition. Have something concrete you want to do and have an action plan of how you want to do it. This is somewhat an offshoot of the "Suit Up" lesson earlier- self confidence will certainly assist you in this regard; but having something- ANYTHING you want to do and are passionate about is an absolute must.

I'll be honest, even a guy living at home with mom/parents may not be an automatic "no" if he's in med school or taking care of a sick family member. A guy with a steady but dead end job isn't out of the running if he's taking night classes, teaching himself a language or skill, or knows that in X years he's going to explore a challenging area of study, travel or have accomplished something noteworthy. A dude with ambition is well worth a woman's time, and definitely at an advantage over the guy who hasn't yet learned to "Suit Up".

One last don't for you, fellows:

DON'T lie or cheat. Simply not cool and disrespects all that work you did to improve yourself over the slacker you might previously have been, or are competing against.

While this is not a complete collection, it's a stepping stone to superior situations with the other sex. I hope you've enjoyed it, and I'll have something fun for you next week.