1,031 thoughts on “Forge

  1. We watched the first 3 eps of Wednesday last night. Absolutely enjoying it so far. Looking forward to doing the last 5 episodes next week.
    Stray observations:

    – Is Tim Burton actually following a script?? Wow.

    – With a few minor changes, this could have been a new series set at Hogwarts. I’ve hear a lot of praise for this show, but I’m surprised I haven’t heard anyone else making Harry Potter comparisons.

    – All of the familiar Addams characters are perfectly-cast.

  2. Thinking out loud on the keyboard. Please let me know if my perspective is off, or if you disagree:

    My recommendations for how we should all contend with the rise of AI art generators:

    -Don’t use them to replace human artists on professional projects
    -Develop ethical guidelines around their use and technology to ensure that the AIs are not taking images from works created by human artists
    -Educate the masses and yourself about which of the AI apps are complying with ethical standards and which are not
    -Don’t yell at people for playing with this new technology
    -Don’t yell at pro artists who put AI art generators to ethical use to enhance their original work
    -Accept that AI art is now a part of the landscape. Don’t yell and complain; join/lead discussions to find ways to ensure that it’s not misused.

      • (perfect video response) – – I should have clarified that the the “we” in that statement was all of us low creatures and individuals. Big biz gonna do what big biz gonna do.

        I said all that in response to seeing people condemning and threatening to unfriend people who goof around with AI art.

        • I agree.

          I’ll add that whenever new technology is introduced, the uproar is usually a bit too over-reactive. There were a lot of people upset when Photoshop came out–yes, I know that is quite a bit different than this, but… I believe that this will become just another artistic tool in the future. I also think many of the limits that people are putting in place are justified, but I really don’t see AI generated art ever supplanting artists. What I hope is this new tool will encourage new artists to enter the fold.

          It will probably take 5 or so years for this to really settle out, imo.

        • What will probably keep AI from taking over the “creative” market is that the software creators will likely add clauses in their user agreement that allow them to maintain some form of ownership on what ever the AI creates, tracking the use of that art and demanding some payment everytime it shows up in media.

          As for private use, most art I have purchased involved a combination of me likeing the work AND wanting to support the artest.
          AI won’t have that draw.

  3. For people expecting 2023 to wash away all the bad luck:
    Wasn’t there an entire movie dedicated to the belief that the number 23 is cursed?

    • Loved this as a kid.
      Even more as an adult when I read an article on what they went through to make it.
      No one “got” what they were trying to do. Kids talking about adult topics, pointing out society’s screwed up values ?? Where is the comedy in that? CBS wanted them to add a “laugh track”.
      The use of actual kids instead of adult voice actors was also “out there”. It took a lot of extra effort to make that happen as the kids had trouble with the lines. Many of little Sally’s lines were recorded a phrase or even a word at a time and painstakingly spliced (no digital here) together to make complete sentences.
      While Vince Geraldi seems tame now, at the time they picked him his music was considered outside the mainstream and made the Network a little uncomfortable.Schultz hated it.
      In the end, CBS wanted to pull the plug on it but it already had a broadcast date locked in.

      It is a show by people who wanted to shake things up and it became cannon for many of us.
      I love that.

  4. Completely differrent entertainment thought-
    I don’t think I have ever seen a film Joseph Gordon Levitt has been in that I didn’t like. They all seem quirky and I like actors who are willing to take a chance on a strange film.

    Johnny Depp was originally in that category.

  5. End of year, we should talk MMMmmmeetup. As a reminder, we’d discussed convening around Houston for the eclipse. This is not me inviting a group of people to Ed’s house. . . Just prodding the discussion.

  6. (It’s long, but profound. The author is Adam-Troy Castro)

    Do I bloody have to do this?
    “Half this country has gone insane.”
    Half this country has always been insane.
    Half this country thought it was just terrific to keep a population of millions in chains.
    Half this country used to pose for lynching postcards.
    Half this country thought anybody who was against Hitler was a communist.
    Half this country thought it was a great thing to beat up people for having long hair.
    Half the country thinks that if a ten-year-old girl is raped, the little whore should shut up and have the baby.
    Half the country thinks the rapist should get visitation.
    Half the country thinks that the moon landing was a hoax.
    You can argue that the percentage is closer to 27%, or whatever, that it only seems like half because of all those who simply have no opinion about anything deeper than what host of THE PRICE IS RIGHT is best.
    But Trump didn’t make so much of the country insane. Fox didn’t. Even OAN and Sinclair and Alex Jones didn’t.
    You know what these people are?
    They are marketers.
    They find the demographic and they go after it.
    The demographic exists and the demographic is eager to lap up more craziness, more insanity, which is why the Overton Window has shifted from the forms of idiocy we had in some past decades to craziness about lizard people and child-trafficking pizza parlors and Jewish space lasers.
    This is the country that once had a bunch of people who were proud, PROUD I tell you, PROUD, to band together as what they unabashedly called “The Know-Nothing Party.” Because this was who they wanted to be and they thought that they were labeling a virtue.
    And you want to know what?
    You want to know what?
    The Khmer Rouge thought it was a good idea for a civilized country to slaughter all its doctors and schoolteachers and force everybody else into slave labor.
    This country is not special.
    The “half this country” complaint? Is true about the human race, in general. Ten percent of all human beings are sociopaths, and another few tens of percent will always listen to those who achieve power because they do not know the difference.
    Trump did not do it.
    He just stirred a pot that was already keeping warm on the stove.

  7. So, I recently finished Scalzi’s Kaiju Preservation Society. I had a bunch to say about it, but I see that someone (not me) gave it to Bunny as her DPSS gift. So I’ll wait.

    I will just say that, to my surprise, I liked it quite a bit.

  8. Andor rewatch put to bed.

    The only one of the new Star Wars series I felt the urge to rewatch so soon. It is brilliant,

    I’m placing a bet that Lo will hate it though :-p

  9. Your crap joke for the day:

    A college pizza delivery boy arrived at the house of Mr.Smith. He delivered the pizza to his trailer. After giving it to him, Mr. Smith asked: “What is the usual tip?”

    “Well,” replied the youth, “this is my first trip here, but the other guys say if I get a quarter out of you, I’ll be doing great.”

    “Is that so?” snorted Mr. Smith. “Well, just to show them how wrong they are, here’s five dollars.”

    “Thanks,” replied the youth, “I’ll put this in my school fund.”

    “What are you studying in school?” asked Larry.

    The lad smiled and said: “Applied psychology.”

  10. It’s too bad about June, Jack. That would have been the perfect time.
    Dates to keep in mind if you’re thinking Canada.
    Between the May long weekend and Thanksgiving is best as a lot of things tend to be closed for the winter beyond those dates. (May 20 – Oct 9)
    Stampede week is a terrible time to be in Calgary (July 7 – 16)
    And August 4 – 6 won’t work for me.
    I know this would narrow dates down quite a bit but thought I’d let you know.

  11. I was just making a sandwich and noticed a graphic on the bread wrapper that proudly proclaims “nutrition in every bite“.
    The implications of having to advertise this are stunning.

    Is there a commercially available bread out there with zero nutritional value?

  12. Your crap joke for the day:

    A farmer goes out and buys a new, young rooster.

    As soon as he brings him home, the young rooster rushes and screws all 150 of the farmer’s hens.

    The farmer is impressed.

    At lunchtime, the young rooster again screws all 150 hens.

    The farmer is not just impressed anymore, he is worried.

    The next morning, not only is the rooster screwing the hens but he is screwing the turkeys, ducks even the cow.

    Later, the farmer looks out into the barnyard and finds the rooster stretched out, limp as a rag, his eyes closed, dead and vultures circling overhead.

    The farmer runs out, looks down at the young rooster’s limp body, and says:

    “You deserved it, you horny bastard!”

    And the young rooster opens one eye, points up at the vultures with his wing, and says,

    “Shhhh! They are about to land!”

    • TSO is basically the Metal band Savatage, with a bunch of extra touring members. That tour apparently (evidently) rakes in the dough. Hand over fist.

  13. Amazon orders are in! My Deadpan Secret Santa recipient’s gift isn’t coming until sometime on or after Dec. 27, unfortunately. Procrastination reigned this year, and today was my first day of serious Christmas shopping.

    In reply to this comment earlier:

    >>> End of year, we should talk MMMmmmeetup.

    We should!! For 2023, I actually just finalized plans for an Alaska cruise with my parents, May 13-20, 2023. It has a stop in Vancouver, and I do have a current passport, valid through Jan. 2024, so I’m good on that front. Based on the date of that trip, I also vote September for MMMMMeetup (preferably not until after Dragon Con, which is Labor Day weekend, but as Jack said, let’s see what everyone thinks).

  14. I am hubbiless this evening. He’s watching Paws of Fury with a bung of elementary kids tonight. Since I’ve never seen it, maybe I’ll see if I can find the movie and stream it too

    • I should have liked Paws of Fury, but I didn’t. It was an attempt to remake Blazing Saddles using cats and dogs instead of racism and turning it into a family friendly flick. Just didn’t land with me on any level whatsoever. And I say that with a super heavy heart because Mel Brooks was a producer on that one.

  15. ^Thanks, Jack! I have a few random, unopened Amazon packages addressed to me at my place; one of them might be yours. I’ll check for any new ones when I get home.

    Sorry to bring this up, but on our last comment thread, JustaJoe posted about reading a roundup of the most recent (2022 study results) research on all of the things Covid is doing to the body; however, he didn’t post a link to it. You don’t happen to still have it, do you, Joe? I ask because I need to present a convincing case for continuing to wear masks as part of my annual Christmas care package project.

    • Was surprised “The Night Before” wasn’t on that list.
      Directed by Jonathan Levine and staring Joseph Gordon-Levitt.
      I stumbled across it late one night years ago and thought it was great.
      I might have been drunk at the time though so…

  16. @Jack I’ve loved Two Steps From Hell for years. I think I first found them when I was trying to find the music for the 2009 Star Trek trailer. The were/are a Production Music company so a lot of their music ends up in trailers. I’ve also noticed their music in PBS series from time to time.

    But, alas, I’ve not heard them score a movie. I’d love to hear that too. And maybe they’ll bring their Live show somewhere near here in the future.

  17. Productive afternoon earlier. Christmas care packages have been sent to my parents, Van, and Mark the Encaffeinated One. Still have Bunny’s and Nutty’s; going to see if I can get Stamps.com to cooperate in order to take care of those. I also got groceries.

  18. In other news, watched ep 1 of the Interview with the Vampire series. . . It’s kinda like watching the recent Hobbit film trilogy.

    “Why are all of these core story and character elements changed? How is all of this new, extra stuff adding to the story? Why?”

    I don’t think I can hang.

    Positives: The 2 leads are great.
    It seems to be well liked by people who don’t know the source material.

  19. I’m officially sick and tired of people being blinded by the flash of AI technology. I work with AI and I’m well aware of what it can do an it’s limitations. People always want to focus on it’s abilities and completely ignore it’s limitations. This article is all about how some YouTuber used AI to color enhance a scene from Metropolis and therefore it’s fantastic and they were floored by the improvement. IT SUCKS! It’s the absolute worst colorization I’ve ever seen in my life. The colors are muted and in an almost constant state of flux. It’s actually difficult to watch. WTF?


    • I agree. The recent Science Friday coverage on this was pretty good. The artists they interviewed were more concerned about how AI was trained on art without artist permission and what constitutes fair-use.

    • Looks like the real deal:

      Hello, me. Meet the real me.

      (That one’s for you, Jack Mangan. )

      When it became clear that I would have to start from scratch with a new Facebook account (my old one got stolen and deleted), I decided that that line would be the first thing I would post on it. RIP, old account. That was one of the OG accounts from the .edu-email-required days. I’m sorry to lose that OG status, the pictures (most of which were also stored elsewhere), and especially the message history.

      On the bright side, I have a blank slate to choose my friends and my interactions more wisely so that I have better, more curated content to look at here. I’ve learned a lot since college, about information security, content algorithms, and many other things. This time, my interactions here will be more mindful.

  20. Crap joke for the evening:

    By 2030, auto pilots on jet liners will be so sophisticated that the cockpit crew will be reduced to one pilot and a dog.

    The pilot is there to feed the dog.

    The dog is there to bite the pilot if they try touch the controls.

    • As an aside, there was a turn based game for the ZX Spectrum called Arnhem that got me interested in strategy games based on WW2.

      The writer was RT Smith, one of those nuggets of information that got in my memory.

    • As an aside, there was a turn based game for the ZX Spectrum called Arnhem that got me interested in strategy games based on WW2.

      The writer was RT Smith, one of those nuggets of information that got stuck in my memory.

  21. So there is a new series on Netflix called The Recruit. A bumbling lawyer for the CIA gets in way over his head.

    Silly but fun and the English actress playing the Russian asset does a good job of being menacing.

  22. Hubby got a bunch of cards from one of the grade one classes. One of them said he’s was the best pinspole ever. I think that will be my new nickname for him now, pinspole

  23. Tony cleared out all of the potential infections and ran a scan, which came up negative.

    We should* be good. Sorry for the unexpected stuff. Damned hackers.

    • Maybe… hopefully.

      If anyone sees any wonkiness, please feel free to message me on FB, it might be the easiest way to catch me. That or you can email me tony at backseatproducers. I’ll try to monitor it as I can.

  24. I’ve never seen the redirect. Which is good. . . but also makes it harder to troubleshoot.

    Can you plz catch a screenshot and send to Tony?

  25. “The biggest stunt in cinema history”

    I still have zero interest in Tom Cruise or Mission Impossible, but – – credit where it’s due. Wow.

  26. Tried The Watcher on Netflix. Based on real events, set in Westfield NJ, where I once lived.

    But episode 1 stunk. Contrived, cliched cheese. I’m bowing out of this one.

  27. Not into historical dramas set in medieval times but started watching the adaption of Wolf Hall on the BBC.

    Some good actors in this and a very young Tom Holland.

    • I feel it’s a stretch to make the central aspect of this story facial recognition. It’s really a story about the legality of policies use by MSG. Facial recognition was just the tool they used to identify the person.

  28. Husband tried to take my picture this evening. We both ended up in giggling fits. He says he doesn’t understand how I don’t look like me in pictures. I say that’s why I don’t like having my picture taken
    Will try again tomorrow

  29. Winter storm hitting the Midwest from now through Friday afternoon. Planning on staying inside until church on Saturday evening.

    I plan to spend the time I’m snowed in working on Christmas letters and getting my place in shape, as well as cooking So far, I’ve hung up a picture and 3 holiday garlands. Pictures on the new FB account when I’m ready to take pictures.

  30. Today is the last day of classes for the husband before the winter break. I think we are both looking forward to two weeks of him being home

  31. I am informed by my eldest, college age child that “citizen sleeper“ is a very good PC game that I might like. They thought it had a D&D vibe to it.

  32. Going on 3 hours now if watching my laptop cycling. Killed it and restarted about 10 times. What’s the definition of madness?

    There’s a reason “Dell” rhymes with “hell.”

  33. My child just told me that another good game is called “Tunic”. I might not have the spelling right.
    Apparently a “puzzle” game and some of the people she knows who play it actually keep notebooks to write down and help sort the clues.

  34. BTW- currently it is 5°F here. I tried to play the “cold is no big deal“ game and went outside to try and do some chores.
    My hands still hurt.

  35. Your crap joke for this Xmas Eve:

    I went to buy a Christmas tree the other day, and the shop assistant asked “Do you plan to put it up yourself?”
    I said “No, I was thinking the living room.”

    • We watched this last night after getting back from family gatherings.

      Enjoyed it every bit as much as the first.

      I do hope this becomes a regular thing.

  36. So, after watching the Rings of Power Series while I was also working my way through the Silmarillion. I was trying to find some good articles on just how the show and Tolkien’s various writings of the second age differ. What helped me get through the Silmarillion was the Tor primer written by Jeff LaSala (https://www.tor.com/series/the-silmarillion-primer/). He was really able to put everything in a way that oddly enough made more sense that Tolkien’s own words and I actually enjoyed the primer at least as much as the Silmarillion itself. So, of course, the best version of an analysis of RoP that I was able to find came from… Jeff LaSala. If you have any desire to read a well written analysis from someone who 1) knows his Tolkien lore incredibly well and 2) really went in with an open mind and understanding that shows will always change things in their adaptations, I highly recommend reading his stuff.





    • The early parts of this article make me realize how little I follow anything anymore. I don’t know 75% of the people listed. It’s not until you get down to the old fogies section (Michael Douglas, Jamie Lee Curtis, The Sheen Clan, etc.) that I start to know people.

  37. Finished the Peripheral rewatch last night, although I forgot about the post-credits scene.

    The ending was a bit clearer this time around. I definitely recommend a second pass.

  38. I saw The Menu in the theaters because I was stuck in Lincoln, Nebraska with little else to do. It was actually quite enjoyable. Really far more of a comedy with thriller aspects than what I would classify as horror. But the comedy was really well done so I like to think of it as a very successful comedy.

  39. I watched Black Adam last night. Pretty descent flick. Starts to take an almost Watchmen concept of not having everything as simply good or evil. So, of course, it flopped and many people didn’t like it. Getting harder and harder to tell anything but a formulaic story in a comic inspired movie.

  40. Tonight: introducing the elder daughter to The Lost Boys. She laughed at it and laughed AT it, which is appropriate.

    Tiffany was less impressed.

    I still love this movie, in spite of the Coreys. I acknowledge every bit of cheese, but I like cheese.

    • I liked the cheese as well.
      This may be another film whose genious was it’s place and time in culture’s timeline.
      I believe it was one of the first “teen” vampire flicks and also one of the first to be intentionally a “Dark Comedy”.
      Now, teen vamps are/were a franchise (so it lost that edge) and murderous, sarcastic teenagers are a dime a dozen so it’s lost that “novelty” as well.
      When it came out though … it was like nothing I had ever seen.

  41. We played the Bob Ross: Art of Chill boardgame last night, which ironically, had some frustrating game mechanics.

    But 2 out of 3 of us liked it. Tiffany and I may play it again.

  42. The littlest one got the Spirited Away and My Neighbor Totoro storybooks for Xmas, so after reading, we had to rewatch Spirited Away last night.

    This movie is just incredible.

    It’s really a movie about an unhappy kid who has to grow up really fast because her careless, greedy parents put everyone in terrible danger. No wonder it was such a hit with Gen X.

  43. Much as I love the Evil Dead movies, I think I’m gonna pass on Evil Dead Rise. I can’t really stomach “mom being evil to kids.” Even in a fictional setting.

  44. The eldest daughter was offended tonight by “Tracks of My Tears” by Smokey Robinson because of the “She might be cute, but she’s just a substitute” line – – because he’s just using the substitute girl.

  45. Crap joke for the day:

    Professor at the University of Sydney was giving a lecture on ‘Involuntary Muscular Contractions’ to his first year medical students. Realising this was not the most riveting subject, the professor decided to lighten the mood slightly.

    He pointed to a young woman in the front row and said, ‘Do you know what your arsehole is doing while you’re having an orgasm?

    She replied, ‘Probably fishing with his mates.’

    It took 45 minutes to restore order in the classroom…

  46. Ask ChatGPT to write a program in BASIC to sort three numbers:

    10 INPUT “Enter the first number: “, A
    20 INPUT “Enter the second number: “, B
    30 INPUT “Enter the third number: “, C
    40 IF A > B THEN SWAP A, B
    50 IF A > C THEN SWAP A, C
    60 IF B > C THEN SWAP B, C
    70 PRINT “The sorted numbers are:”; A; B; C
    80 END

  47. Just finished the third episode of “Wednesday”
    Very much enjoying this.
    The style is my kind of thing and the lead actress is killing it (pun intended).

    IMHO they have avoided the pitfall of making each scene just a set-up for a snarky remark from her (ala – Roger Moore’s “James Bond“). Her snark seems to be “considered response” rather than “off the top of the head” smarm.
    She might be kidding. She might not.
    I think that is what makes it work.

  48. Crap joke for a Sunday morning:

    A man climbs to the top of Mt. Sinai and gets close enough to talk to God. Looking up, he asks the Lord, “God, what does a million years mean to you?” The Lord replies, “A minute.”

    The man then asks, “And what does a million dollars mean to you?” The Lord replies, “A penny.”

    Then he asks,”Can I have a penny?” The Lord replies, “In a minute.”

  49. TIL: Boris Vallejo is still with us. Boris Vallejo turns 83 today! In honor, I shall oil up my muscles and go to the grocery store in a teeny tiny loincloth.

  50. I spent about 90 minutes last night trying to pick the bathroom door lock, to no avail. No one was trapped inside, just no one can access the bathroom now.
    Always something.

    • I’ve only every had bathroom doors with the hole on the outside of the knob so that one can stick something like a paper clip in it and the door will unlock. Sorry for the struggle.

    • When my son was 2 years old, he managed to throw the keys to a closet into that closet and lock it. I ended up taking the hinges off the door to retrieve them and put a none locking hardware set on the door so it wouldn’t happen later.

  51. Always late to the party, I started an Instagram account, just because. So far I have one follower.
    It’s just been about the cat so far but, let’s see how long that lasts.

  52. Initial success on project “find new standup comedians”. I rather like Tim Minchin, or at least his latest special “Back Live”. His music is good, and the comedy and social commentary are spot on.

    • Meh.
      For my tastes, it doesn’t add any new takes on the song and isn’t better than the original.
      I don’t see any reason to listen to this version instead of the original.

  53. Crap joke for the evening:

    A husband and wife in their 90s are both having problems remembering things.
    During a checkup, the doctor tells them that they’re physically OK, but they might want to start writing things down to avoid forgetting.
    Later that night, while watching TV, the old man gets up from his chair. “Want anything while I’m in the kitchen?” he asks.
    “Will you get me a bowl of ice cream?”
    “Sure …”
    “Don’t you think you should write it down so you can remember it?” she asks.
    “No, I can remember it.”
    “Well, I’d like some strawberries on top, too. Maybe you should write it down, so as not to forget it?”
    He says, “I can remember that. You want a bowl of ice cream with strawberries.”
    “I’d also like whipped cream. I’m certain you’ll forget that, write it down?” she asks.
    Irritated, he says, “I don’t need to write it down, I can remember it! Ice cream with strawberries and whipped cream — I got it, for goodness’ sake!” Then he toddles into the kitchen.
    After about 20 minutes, the old man returns and hands his wife a plate of bacon and eggs.
    She stares at the plate for a moment.
    “Where’s my toast?”

    • Yeah, it is all over Twitter. It’s been good news for all 3rd party systems that compete with DnD. The publisher of Savage Worlds stated they sold out of all their base rule books for some reason. LOL Hasbro’s lawyers are pretty thickheaded in my opinion. Role-playing tabletop games are a cottage industry and there are plenty of other systems people can use and get the same or better experience. I’m also a little peeved with Hasbro the way they have handled the Rom:Spaceknight IP. James Gunn wanted ROM in Guardians 3, but Marvel stated it would be too difficult to work with Hasbro to get the rights. If Hasbro ever does make a ROM movie, nobody will have a clue who the character is. That was a big marketing opportunity for them, but lawyers.

    • The site wants me to pay to read into the meat of the article. I did the replacement when they first put out the recall because my old machine was, well, old and I wanted a free new one. But my doctor said that the issue with the foam was caused by people putting their CPAP machines into sanitizing machines that they were never designed to go into and that if I didn’t do that, I wouldn’t have any actual trouble with the foam. They sent me a new machine quickly and with no muss or fuss. The new machine works fine.

  54. We have started watching the tv series Let The Right One In. I’ve seen both versions of the movie (French and English) and am quite enjoying the series now, too

  55. It was a lovely birthday! If you didn’t see on FB, Tiffany surprised me with front row tix for a great Led Zeppelin cover band.

    Earlier, had hot pot for dinner, which was an adventure in itself.

    • I definitely had some Tangerine Dream albums back in the day. You know… the ones you would put into a dual cassette boom box and make a copy of. Those.

      • They have over 150 album releases. Sadly, some of my old favorites – Thief, Turn of the Tides – are not available through Amazon streaming.

  56. Crap joke for the evening:

    A husband was sitting quietly reading his paper one morning, peacefully enjoying himself, when his wife sneaks up behind him and whacks him on the back of the head with a huge frying pan.

    “What the heck was that for!” he asked.

    She replies, “I found a piece of paper in your pants pocket with the name Marylou written on it…”

    “Oh, dear, remember two weeks ago when I went to the horse races? Well, Marylou was the name of one of the horses I placed a bet on.”

    The explanation seems to appease her, and she leaves the room to go about her business.

    Three days later, the man is again sitting in his chair reading the morning paper. His wife abruptly hangs up the telephone and then whacks him on the back of the head with the huge frying pan.

    “What the heck did I do wrong this time!” he asked.

    She answered, “Your horse just called!”

  57. At the request of someone, I made a video presentation of some of my work.
    I now have a newfound appreciation for those who work in that field

  58. Looks like Wizards of the Coast finally addressed the open license controversy.


    This seems like the right direction in my opinion. I don’t begrudge Wizards trying to make money on their IP, but I do get how content creators felt the reigns tightening. As for myself, I’m not going to be subscribing to any monthly digital services from Wizards, so if DnD Beyond makes it mandatory, there are plenty of paper & pencil systems that don’t require it, even older editions of DnD.

    • I imagine it’s too little, too late for some. Still, this is the right thing to do today, given the situation.

      Amazon should have done something like this after they wrecked Comixology.

  59. I really liked 1899 on Netflix! I’m disappointed in Netflix for cancelling it.

    Calling on Amazon Prime to pick it up and let them finish this thing!

    • Yeah, we quite enjoyed it too. I know there’s some sort of petition going around to get it renewed but I don’t think that’ll work

  60. End of an era.

    I subscribe to two magazines every year. Well just went digital only with one of them.

    With postal strikes and the pandemic deliveries of the print magazine were a tad unreliable. Discovered I quite enjoyed reading the digital version of the magazine on my iPad every week so went for the cheaper option.

    • I’ve gotten the PC Gamer magazine digitally on the Ipad for a few years now. I don’t think I’d ever go back to paper given a choice.

    • What an iconic voice and character. CSN/CSNY absolutely takes me back to a specific place and time.
      I know he’d been “grandpa yelling at cloud” online in the past few years, but whatever. Great musician, great career. RIP

      • Everything Jack said.
        He brought great music and musical stories into the world.
        The album “So Far” is a milestone piece for me and is music that will outlive us all

  61. Crap joke for this cold morning:

    I recently had a mouse infestation in my kitchen.

    I sprayed WD 40 around the hole they came in through.

    It didn’t get rid of them, but it stopped them squeaking!

    • For whatever reason, these go straight into my read/trash folder. Once I know it exists, I’m able to locate them but they certainly don’t like going into my in box. I’ve double checked all my settings and everything and there seems to be no reason for this.

    • Well that became a confusing search really fast. I went to find the latest Tull album and it was The Zealot Gene (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Zealot_Gene) in 2022. I though that might be it but when I finally got to the description of the album it was “The Zealot Gene is not a concept album, but biblical references are made throughout and Anderson began writing each song with a passage from the Bible.”

      So much for that album. I love Tull, but that really really isn’t up my alley.

      Turns out the one on Norse Myths is RökFlöte and has not been released yet. That one I’ll definitely be on the lookout for.

        • Indeed, you are and were correct. Doesn’t mean that you (or anybody else) has always been so. And when I saw 2022 I though there really couldn’t be two new Tull albums in the last year or so. It was still worth investigating, even if it turn out that the 2022 album doesn’t look for me. Would have been worth it for new Tull.

    • Funny thing is, 50 years ago Pink Floyd was doing things that caused people who didn’t like change to get upset.
      Nice to see they can still do that.

    • Yet another example of the statement my friends and I used to explain every unexplainable thing when I was an undergrad in college… people are stupid

  62. Eldest daughter is home from school. We were going to watch Terminator 2 (the first isn’t on HBO right now, just the 2nd), but went with John Wick instead. I figured it was a bit more current and relevant to a person born in this century – – and little shorter, which mattered when starting after 11.

    I’ve seen the John Wick movies once apiece, in the theaters. This movie is still really good, but far darker in tone than I remembered. I guess it was the sequels that I was thinking of that get more playful with his gun-fu.
    Still excellent, but I couldn’t help feeling like we shoulda watched T2.

    • John Wick has of late, become a running joke around here. For some reason in the Dec/Jan time period, it was almost ALWAYS on if we sat down to watch TV at night.
      The real funny part was that when we flipped through the channels and hit it, there was ALWAYS a gun fight going on.
      If there is not a drinking game based on him reloading there should be.

      Still haven’t seen all of any of those films.

    • As much as I like the first Terminator movie, it can be hard to watch for younger audiences as the special effects were far far far superior in T2.

      • T1 will always hold a special place in my heart but it’s prevalence of cultural references and images (which I think made it feel more real and important to me at that time) made it almost unwatchable decades later. I could overlook the aged FX but not the heavy 80’s vibe.
        Also- my “decades later” rewatch was with a high school age daughter and I had not remembered the John/Sarah sex scene. I remembered they had hooked up but not that it was given so much explicite screen time.
        THAT became very uncomfortable.

        • I remember an awkward time with my daughter when she got into horror movies and there was a constant struggle to find stuff that contained violence but not sex. I am well aware of the hypocrisy there. However, she and I were both more comfortable watching one than the other. Oddly enough, the most uncomfortable movie for us to watch together had nothing to do with sex scenes. It was, if I recall correctly, Aliens 3 or 4 in which it seemed that every other word spoken was an obscenity. I thought nothing of it the first time I saw it. But watching it with a teenage daughter and we were both superiorly aware of the language. Crazy the things that see off when watched with a school age daughter.

          • Episode 1 of the Vampire Chronicles completely went there (a shock to me, since there’s nothing like that in the book, goddammit), and after about 20 seconds of everyone silently begging the scene to end, the daughter just said, “bye” and left.

            I think the solution is to always always always always check the content warnings.

      • Boy did I hate T3. I last watched it as a Blockbuster rental, so maybe I should give it another shot.

        I was thinking – – as Asshat was kinda saying – – that T2 is the better starting point for a younger viewer.

  63. Ok, so in Iron Giant, did the robot have a head injury from the crash landing or when he fell after Hogarth cut the power off at the sub station?

    • While some of these ARE clearly based on the previous work … I feel the author was clearly reaching on others to get enough material to make their article marketable.

  64. The husband, myself, and a friend of ours have this running joke about cat people. Last night, John and I decided to watch the eighties movie Cat People. If you like nudity in your movies, this I the one for you. If you want your movies to make sense, then walk away.

    I think tonight we’ll watch the fourties’ version

  65. The husband, myself, and a friend of ours have this running joke about cat people. Last night, John and I decided to watch the eighties movie Cat People. If you like nudity in your movies, this I the one for you. If you want your movies to make sense, then walk away.

    I think tonight we’ll watch the fourties’ version

    • Seems like I liked Cat People, but have a vague memory of it being fairly dated the last viewing, which was probably over 25 years ago.

    • Spoken in Cartman voice “yeah I want nudity in my movies”.

      I first watched cat people as a horny teenager so it was a fast favorite. Since I’m still a horny adult I expect it will have aged well. Although I remember sections of it being slower and that still won’t bode well with me.

  66. Anyone here read Scalzi’s Kaiju Preservation Society? Looks interesting enough and I did like the one other thing of Scalzi’s that I’ve read. Apologies if anyone has already expressed their opinions here and I missed it.

  67. Last night we watched the 1942 Cat People. With the exception of the nudity, you could definitely see the parts of this movie that made up its remake

    • We watched it earlier today. I’ve never played the game and I’m usually not into the whole zombie apocalypse genre. But, given the two lead actors, I was up for giving it a shot.

      We’re enjoying it so far.

    • That’s pretty great. I don’t think I would have room for such a monster. However, Teresa liked her brother’s arcade emulator so much it is likely we’ll get one of those in the coming years.

    • I’ve actually seen more than I thought I had … but none in the theater and that may be why I didn’t think I had seen any.

      Everything Everywhere All at Once
      Top Gun: Maverick

      Hands down … “EEAO” gets my vote.

    • If he’s guilty, then kick him to the curb and good riddance.
      If the accusations are false, then we’re seeing an innocent person lose his entire livelihood.

      I haven’t seen proof either way.

      Please remember: should I ever hit his levels of fame, then there is a vindictive, mentally unwell person from my past who will make as much noise as possible with false accusations.

        • Yeah, I’ve appreciated people’s kind words about things I’ve created – – that’s been great. Otherwise, I continue to enjoy my anonymity, thank you.

      • (* this post brought to you by
        “people who have no idea what they’re talking about and blithely post before they do any research“)

        • It’s rumored he is the originator of “palm muting.”

          Okay not really. (To no one’s surprise I am familiar with the injury in question)

          • To this day, he wears little finger caps on his right hand. Many believe that this was the first reason why Black Sabbath tuned down to their ominous, Doomy sound, so the string tension would be easier on his hand.

            He’s a lefty player like me!

          • As was explained to me, to avoid a lot of pain due to the injury, he wears those finger caps, plus he strung his guitar with banjo strings and used drop C tuning.

  68. MMMmmmeetup polling results are in!

    Majority of the votes (6/9) are for Labor Day Weekend.

    What do we want to do with that?

    The Mangan Fab Four are IN!

        • The long weekend is the first to fourth here. The sixth is a Wednesday. I’m assuming it’s the first weekend of September that we’re talking about

          • When people are ready, I can let you know about the hotels closest to me. Although, Airdrie is small enough you can drive from one end of the city to the other in ten or fifteen minutes so anywhere is probably fine.
            Also, my car, while having seatbelts for four, will comfortably fit 3 people. I can try to snaggle John to drive so we’ll have an extra vehicle for the Saturday, Sunday, and Monday (he’ll work on Thursday and Friday), but there’s a better than average chance he’ll say no. He’s not an overly social person.

  69. Man, what a night at the Metal Hall of Fame gala. I can’t even count the number of amazing people I met and talked to through The Metal Voice (I was on their Livestream for quite a while.

  70. So Jack, I don’t know US taxes well enough but, if you can arrange to meet with one of your artists while here, can you write off your flight? (I know not the whole family’s)

    They are welcome to join us, or come to the Saturday food thing at our place that always happens at meetups

    • Thanks, Ryah! I was planning on inviting Kyle, Derek, and Jim (the trip from Edmonton might be difficult). Please also feel free to o cite Ryan, Randy, and anyone else who’d be inclined.

  71. When making plans, one thing I can tell you, the closer you can arrive to when a place opens, the better. I’m sure Van can tell you from when he was here, we’d go to the Tyrell, or the zoo, or Heritage Park and there were few crowds by arriving earlier. By the time we were ready to leave, the lines were hours long

  72. The two hotels closest to me is a Best Western Plus and a Days Inn. While the Best Western is about five minutes closer, The Days Inn was only built about five years ago so it’s newer.
    I haven’t been inside either one of them so couldn’t say what they are like, but I can take a peek at them next week if people want

  73. Stupid accidents are stupid.

    Cut my finger trying to separate mini Yorkshire pudding trays with a knife, knew as I was doing it that this was probably not going to end well and it didn’t.