1,034 thoughts on “When the Pawn Scrolls the Conflict

  1. This is what happens when you reply to a post before getting to the end and figuring out there is a new thread. Posting again here in reply to Van’s informing us of the passing of Michael Nesmith.

    As much as I love the Monkees, I think that the movie Elephant Parts had a bigger influence on my evolving sense of humor. He was truly a unique style in and of himself. Didn’t we watch Elephant Parts at some Meeetup as well?



    The Roaming Asshat , December 11, 2021 at 6:09 am

  2. Expanse S6 E1 was consumed last night!

    I’d intended to rewatch the entire series in prep for the finale, but life had other plans. Maybe someday we’ll do the full rewatch.

    • I was just going to share the same article.

      Absolutely heartbreaking news. This is a celebrity death that gets me.

      The first three books in her Vampire series are of the greatest things I’ve ever read. Absolutely brilliant. I cannot recommend them enough.

      And they seriously changed the vampire genre forever.

      • Agree 100%
        I will always hold a special place emotionally for those as they were what got me back into reading for fun. As a kid I read everything I could get a hold of. Then in my late teens/early 20’s there were suddenly just so many other things to do. Then, in late 20’s a friend gave me the 2nd book in that series and said “Read this. No, seriously … read it!”
        I did and started my “adult” love affair with reading.

  3. Well, not that it was ever going to happen anyway, but it looks like Disney’s managed to save me six grand that I won’t be spending on their “Starcruiser Hotel” experience.

    I mean, dear lord, does it look awful.

      • It’s more of a I didn’t want to go out into the cold dilemma, even with a coat and boots. I got over it though and bundled up and walked to our mail box and got the junk mail.
        Normally I wouldn’t have even gone out today but I’m expecting a parcel

  4. So, we’ve been watching Corner Gas. They drink Pilsner. My hubby, ever the slave to product placement, picked up a case of Pil. He of A Castle for Christmas on NetFlix, now he wants to watch that this weekend.
    At what point do I need to stage an intervention?

  5. Dune, although a fantastically well written novel, was not my cup of tea because I just don’t enjoy in-depth investigations into religion or politics. However, I’m definitely excited to see this adaptation. I’m a huge Arthur C. Clarke fan. The only thing that would have been better is if it was Childhood’s End.


    • It’s not their first try to enter the US. I don’t think they resonate. Just like Dunkin Donuts have tried, and failed, to enter Canada.
      Tim’s doughnuts are ok. I used to love their ice Capps, when I could have caffeine. The rest of their stuff is pretty meh in my opinion. Does that make me a bad Canadian?

    • I think their coffee is pretty damn good, quite a bit like Dunkins.

      I greatly enjoyed having a Timmy’s kiosk in the arena for Coyotes home games, but it only lasted a few seasons.

  6. Another YouTube reaction channel covers “Shine On You Crazy Diamond” a few weeks after Lost in Vegas. I wonder if they track each other.


    Roger is the brain, David is the heart, Mason is the muscle, but Rick is the soul, is the glue.

    I never actually sit and watch these things in their entirety, but I dig seeing people love the music I love. I sometimes have it playing in another tab.

    • I was happy to see the people that I recognized in that video. Unfortunately, even upon seeing the list of people that participated in order of appearance, I still don’t know 80% of the people involved.

      Side note: I’ve been to the book store that they are wandering around in at the beginning of the “investigation”. Insanely cool place.

  7. Apparently, in the newest season of The Expanse, there are bonus short videos in the x-Ray section.
    We haven’t started watching yet to test this out but it sounds cool

  8. The second season of The Witcher has started streaming on Netflix. Goodness know when I actually get around to watching it with all the other to stuff I would like to watch.

    Booked ticket to see the new Spider-Man flick this weekend.

  9. Reading recap:

    Started Gideon the Ninth. Halfway through, I paused to read:

    The first Murderbot book. Every bit as great as ditto and Van have been saying.

    Finished Gideon.

    Reread the first Matt Fraction Hawkeye graphic novel, which is a blast. (Only a few elements in common with the show)

    “Attack on Titan” manga. #1 and #2

    “The Sun Also Rises.” It’s fine. I don’t love Hemingway.

    Now reading: “The Spy Who Came in From the Cold” by John LeCarre.

      • I love the whole Murderbot series. It’s one of the most enjoyable things I’ve read in years.

        I also love Gideon and Harrow, but they are “work” especially Harrow.

        AoT is good, once you get past the artwork. I enjoyed it overall, but I think the anime is better in many respects.

          • I wasn’t really enjoying the excess cheese while reading AoT vol 1, but then it ended the way it did, and I went, “Fuck, now I need to see what happens next.”

            Kinda the same for AoT#2.

            I expect to keep going until I run out of the free stuff on Comixology.

            I will get back to the Murderbot books soon. Great stuff.

  10. Crap joke for the day:

    You are driving in a car at a constant speed.
    On your left side is a ‘drop off’ , (The ground is 18-24 inches below the level you are travelling on), and on your right side is a fire engine travelling at the same speed as you …
    In front of you is a galloping horse , which is the same size as your car and you cannot overtake it .
    Behind you is a galloping zebra . Both the horse and zebra are also travelling at the same speed as you .
    What must you do to safely get out of this highly dangerous situation ?

    Get off the merry-go-round, you’re drunk!

  11. The new Spider-man flick was a lot of fun.

    The cinema experience less so, but at least most people kept their masks on.

    The young kid squealing out the names of the two guest stars when they came on screen even made this humbug smile.

  12. Loving the convenience of Stamps.com. Anything that saves me standing in line for the post office is a good thing. However, I’ve just hit a snag: the web form demands local phone numbers for international shipping.

    Paging Bunny and Van: Could you please email or Facebook PM me a phone number I can use for each of your shipping labels? Thank you. You’ll get these care packages eventually, though probably not in time for Christmas. :/

  13. So after watch the first few episodes of Cobra Kai, I stopped watching for months and now I’ve restarted watching and really enjoying S1.

  14. I’m thinking of telling my Boo I’m cancelling Christmas dinner again this year.
    It’s usually just her and her partner over for Christmas. So gathering size is not the problem. The issue is, they go over to his mom’s house for Christmas eve dinner. It’s usually a big affair with several families (his two sisters, their spouses, children, as well as any extended family and friends his mother may invite). Do I really want the two of them over the day after that with unknown exposures?

  15. Just started Umbrella Academy. I have to say that I’ve been frustrated with the concept that you should give a series 3 episodes to decide if you like it or not. It’s created an “industry standard” IMHO in which TV series get to be very slow about grabbing your attention and hooking you on the show. I’m really, really glad to say that Umbrella Academy grabbed me right with the first episode. Fantastic setup, great characters, and action right in the first episode. Well done Umbrella Academy.

    Side note: I had seen and really liked Robert Sheehan in Misfits. Was quite surprised that I really liked Klaus and went the whole episode without realizing it was Robert Sheehan. That guy’s got some talent.

  16. Worked out a compromise with my Boo. She’s coming over for dinner on New Year’s Day. That way, they have a week to figure out if they’re sick. I know, technically it’s up to ten days to see if you’ve got it but, *shrug*, it’s a compromise.

    • I’d never cast aspersions on anyone who’s doing their best. I’ll reserve judgment for those who are recklessly, carelessly, selfishly endangering everyone around them.

      And FWIW, I’d probably make the same compromise in that situation.

    1. Avoid carrot sticks. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Holiday spirit. In fact, if you see carrots, leave immediately. Go next door, where they’re serving rum balls.
    2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly, it’s rare. You can not find it any other time of year but now. So drink up! Who cares that it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It’s not as if you’re going to turn into an eggnog-alcoholic or something. It’s a treat. Enjoy it. Have one for me. Have two. It’s later than you think. It’s Christmas!
    3. If something comes with gravy, use it. That’s the whole point of gravy. Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on. Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes. Fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano. Repeat.
    4. As for mashed potatoes, always ask if they’re made with skim milk or whole milk. If it’s skim, pass. Why bother? It’s like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission.
    5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Holiday party is to eat other people’s food for free. Lots of it. Hello?
    6. Under no circumstances should you exercise between now and New Year’s. You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do. This is the time for long naps, which you’ll need after circling the buffet table while carrying a 10-pound plate of food and that vat of eggnog.
    7. If you come across something really good at a buffet table, like frosted Christmas cookies in the shape and size of Santa, position yourself near them and don’t budge. Have as many as you can before becoming the center of attention. They’re like a beautiful pair of shoes. If you leave them behind, you’re never going to see them again.
    8. Same for pies. Apple, Pumpkin, Mincemeat. Have a slice of each. Or if you don’t like mincemeat, have two apples and one pumpkin. Always have three. When else do you get to have more than one dessert, Labor Day?
    9. Did someone mention fruitcake? Granted, it’s loaded with the mandatory celebratory calories but avoid it at all cost. I mean, have some standards.
    10. One final tip: If you don’t feel terrible when you leave the party or get up from the table, you haven’t been paying attention. Re-read tips; start over, but hurry, January is just around the corner. Remember this motto to live by:
    “Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate and wine in one hand, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming ” WOO HOO what a ride!”

  18. Just checked the mail. There was a set of Fifth Element dice but nothing on the card said who it was from. While I want to guess Amy? I didn’t want to presume.

    Thank you, whoever you are.

  19. Just finished consuming the new Matrix: Resurrections film.

    It’s everything the Star Wars sequels should have been. A believable and natural progression from the original trilogy that honors without getting mired in simply retelling the same old story. It also respects the original characters, heroes and villains alike.

    Was it necessary? In light of how Revolutions ended, I would say it absolutely was.

  20. So last night had a play of the The Matrix tech demo on the PS5. The action sequence is ok but the chance to explore the city by walking, flying or just driving is pretty impressive.

  21. Did up the draft for the end of the year newsletter. God I hate writing newsletters. If I wanted to do a blog, I’d do a blog.

  22. My Elder loved the Arcane series and has become infatuated with the soundtrack.

    There are a couple of excellent songs on it. Check it out! She was even introduced to this hip new artist named Sting. Watch that guy, I think he’s going to have quite a career.

  23. Been sick as a dog these past 2 days. It was bad enough that I went to the drive thru test line yesterday (negative).

    Just gotta point out that I’m blessed to have Tiffany as my backup and partner. After working overnight, she let me sleep in today.

    I still feel like shit. Gotta get unfunked for tomorrow.

  24. Google’s Santa tracker and Norad’s show Santa in different places. Google says The Netherlands. Norad says Africa. They really should get their stories straight.

  25. Morning Pan
    Expect a quiet day of gaming. Then, since it’s just the two of us, I’ll roast up a chicken breast as our dinner.

  26. We watched the new,Resident Evil movie tonight. I liked the original series of movies. I also liked this one. This one was actuacloser to the games (1 & 2) in feel

  27. There’s a major character on The Expanse who is a serious drag on the show. Ep 3 of the current season teased killing them off and I was momentarily thrilled. Not as a rooting interest, but as a wish for the show to get back to its past greatness.
    But alas.

    The Expanse is still great, btw. Wow, is there a LOT to wrap up in just 3 last episodes.

  28. It’s -34C (-40 with the wind chill) right now. We’re going to do some grocery shopping in an hour. Do you think it will warm up much between now and then?

    • You know it’s just bloody nice in this age of the sci-fi blockbusters to watch a low key sci-fi film where nobody is shot or blown up.

      Oh and the first scene with it’s homage to a certain biographical story by Douglas Adams is the cherry on top.

  29. Crap joke for today:

    A warning to all of you out and about , be careful about drink driving as we are getting close to new year. The Police are out there checking on people.
    Last night a friend and I were out for a few drinks and a meal. One thing lead to another and we had a few too many beers and then went onto the wine, finishing with coffee and brandy. Not a good idea. Knowing we were over the limit, we decided to leave my car and took a bus home. Sure enough, we passed a police checkpoint, where they were pulling over drivers and performing breathalyser tests. Because we was on the bus they just waved it past. We arrived home safely and without incident, which was a real surprise as weve never driven a bus before and I am not even sure where we got it from. Now it’s parked outside my house and I don’t know what to do with it!

  30. JW: Being the Ricardos on Prime

    I knew going in there were inaccuracies and found out later that Arnaz was booted out of Cuba in the 30s due to a military take over and not Fidel and the communists.

    Still, I enjoyed it.

  31. Finally got out to see Spider-Man. Lots of fun. It’s the only movie of the current phase that I liked a lot. (Shang-Chi had its moments, but… meh.).

    – We were basically the only people in the theater wearing masks. Omicron is going to be a bloodbath.

    After the movie, it was hailing. Hailing! Literally.

  32. I have to admit, I was a bit underwhelmed by Matrix Resurrections. Maybe I was hoping for to much? I loved the meta commentary and tie-ins to the previous movie, but once you strip that out and focus on the story, it was a little weak. Still, I’m glad it was made by LW and not WB, and I really hope to see more of Bugs in the future.

    • Bugs was the most interesting character. I didn’t realize at first that she’s Colleen from Iron Fist!

      I definitely like this movie, but it suffers a bit from the same issues as the new SW movies. Oh, you liked this character in the originals? Check out this new version of them! I need to see it again, but I still rate Matrix 2 as better.

      1 – 2 – 4 – 3

  33. My WiFi network has been slow for days, so spent an hour switching stuff off/on and turns out one of the mesh nodes needed to be rebooted.

    Then discovered wpa3 had been switched off, switching it back on improved WiFi speeds about 10%..what the fuck is that about?

  34. This is pretty damn exciting – due the launch going pretty much perfectly, the Webb telescope is expected to last a good bit longer than the 10 year plan due to not having to burn much of it’s on board fule supply for course corrections:


    The early deployment of the solar array was also a bonus. I was a bit shocked when seeing it go open shortly after detaching from the upper rocket stage…as it was not supposed to happen for a couple more minutes. Turns out the deployment was automatic once the telescope reached the correct altitude, which it did a few minutes earlier than estimated.

  35. Book of Boba ep1 – good not great. But I’ll take it and i enjoyed it. I should also stop expecting great every time. That’s on me.

    Unless it’s Matrix 4…. that’s on y’all. Cough.

  36. 1930s footage from Los Angeles get color restorations an is upgraded to 60 fps.


    1. Odd that this makes the first set of footage look like something shot in the 60s at first glance
    2. I remember when colorizing black and white footage was considered a crime against humanity (although that was for beloved movies rather than random shots like this and we’re doing it for different reasons).
    3. The footage starting at about 0:58 somehow looks like video rather than film.
    4. Even in the 1930s LA was too damn crowded

    • 2. Agreed. Remember how terrible the first colorized movies looked? I imagine it could be done properly now, but I don’t think the change would ever feel right.

    • I wasn’t blown away by Boba Fett ep 1. But neither do I understand the hate. It was about what I expect so far. Only thing I wasn’t crazy about is trying to make Boba Fett too respectable. He is a bounty hunter and didn’t really seem to have the kind of ethics they seem to want him to have for this series when I’ve seen him in the other movies.

      • Yeah, I don’t get it either. It’s ep 1. I liked it. Yes, it was a bunch of backstory, but I’m hoping it will setup how the rest of the story plays out. Because you have to admit, the current Boba is different from the Boba we saw in the original trilogy.

    • If I had to rank the cool stuff that came out in December I would rank Spidey as first, Matrix as second, and Boba Fett as 3rd. I enjoyed all three, although the acting on the part of Boba Fett could be better, I’m confident the series will improve.

    • Finished watching S2 of The Witcher. I found some of the plot confusing and there were a few times I just enjoyed the spectacle as I lost track of the plot.

      Still, it was enjoyable and hopefully there will be a S3.

  37. My boss wanted to show off his new car, so he took me out to lunch. It’s one thing to say that a Tesla Model S Plaid will do 0 to 100 MPH in 4 secs. It is another to experience it. I don’t think I’ve ever been in a car that can make you lose consciousness through acceleration.

    • I have stuff that only ever existed on cassette. I got a cassette deck with USB to digitize and the very first thing I hooked into it (a bootleg tape that I made of a free Frank Zappa concert in Madrid in 1987) was almost immediately eaten. Fortunately I was able to get some cassette repair stuff and only lost a few seconds of total tape.

      I love the concept of playing my old cassettes on Bluetooth speakers, but let’s not forget that cassette’s have a shelf life and can only be played so many times. I would make cassette copies and only play the copies on a regular basis. Then again, finding blank cassettes is it’s own issue.

  38. So basically this cream I got from the doctor is chemo for the sun damage on my head. So it nukes the fast growing cells and it’s going to leave inflamed oozing skin.


  39. I came here to post a terrifying story about the aftermath of the 2024 US election, but my clipboard seems to have dropped the link. Probably for the best. I think we all have enough dread in our lives.

  40. I did finish the Deadwood series. And holy crapola, what a downer of an ending. I don’t have high hopes for the movie, but I at least hope there’ll be some accountability and some tying up of loose ends.

    Overall, it was a good journey. The show had amazing dialogue, some great characters, and great little Godfather-esque intrigues. It had its issues too, for sure, but maybe some of those could have been fixed in future seasons.

  41. So on a recommendation, I watched Space Pirate: Captain Harlock – – a CGI Sci-Fi anime movie.

    Deeply silly in many places, but some truly amazing visuals. The space combat scenes are pretty great. And ridiculous.

    Hilariously, the buxom space babe – – 1 of 3 female characters in the whole thing – – just randomly takes a zero-g shower at one point. They don’t even attempt to justify the scene; it has no purpose at all.

  42. Yesterday a friend of mine, while taking down decorations, fell off a ladder and knew he had broken his leg. His wife rushed him to the emergency room where he waited for 6 HOURS before they took an xray and pronounced that it “was a doozy”. Broken 2 places below the knee. He then had to wait 2 HOURS before they could find a bed for him so a Doc could see him. This info came from his wife, to mine, to me so the timeline becomes muddled at this point but eventually, after the Doctor looked at it, they declared he needed “emergency’ surgery.
    He had to wait in their facility for more than 8 hours with something that needed EMERGENCY surgery.

    By the time they declared this, they decided he needed to be moved across town to their other Hospital to get to him quicker. It was the middle of the night and they had to wake the orthopedic team and get them in. At 8:00 this morning he was finally in pre-op where he still waits 3 hours later. His last pain medication was at 4am and has long ago stopped working.

    This is what US emergency medicine has fallen to at this point. They day before both Hospitals had declared they were canceling ALL elective and outpatient surgeries because they were over run.
    This is in a metropolitan area with top notch hospitals. He is a white male with ALL the insurance so if there is ANY advantages to be had, he would supposedly have them. I can’t imagine how bad it must be for those with no insurance.
    I feel like the same people who have fought to keep us from getting socialized medicine (because they said that this is how it would be) are the same people who have fought all of the Covid mitigation efforts. They have given us THEIR worst “socialized medicine” nightmares without giving us any of the Universal access to Healthcare.

    Regardless – I advise hunkering down. Do not put yourself in any position to get hurt if you can do so. There are no such things as “Minor medical emergencies” right now.
    What a nightmare.

    • Terrifying. Our medical system was always slow and dangerously ineffective, but now that there’s a major medical event, it’s become entirely crippled.

      Medical care shouldn’t be “for profit.”

  43. In other news –
    This from POTUS national broadcast a little while ago:
    “Here’s the truth. The former president of the United States of America has created and spread a web of lies about the 2020 election,” President Biden says.

    “Because his bruised ego matters more to him than our democracy or our constitution. He can’t accept he lost.”

    • Tough words are just words, Joe. Let’s see some significant sentences for these traitors. Let’s see trump and the other ringleaders in jail.

          • Yes, you’re right. Maybe JustaJoe has that kind of influence?

            It’s amazing that these people are not only still free, but holding government positions and talking openly about running in 2024.

          • Gratuitously speaking, it felt good to here him say that. I think most bullies are bullies because no one who COULD have stood up to them ever did.

            More practically speaking, that speach was undoubtably written and re-written and closely scrutinized and vetted by lawyers and policy wonks. I am thinking that he wouldn’t have been allowed to call out TFG like that unless THEY know something that we don’t.
            I gotta hope.

  44. I went out to check the mail. The cat was standing behind me when I opened the door to go outside. A blast of cold air hit her face and she gave me a look like i had done the most offensive thing in in the world

    • Similar thing here.
      It was hovering around freezing with a steady rain/sleet coming down but cat was being a pain in the neck wanting go out. So I open the door to let her out and she ran past me like she had pulled something over on me … only to come to a screeching stop just outside the door and turn and scowl at me as if to say “What have you done to the outdoors, evil human!”

  45. BTW – my friend got his surgery. Has stabilizers screwed into place.
    Apparently he made the right initial choice of hospitals. The doc that saw him at 8 hours had seen his case on the list and for some reason, bumped him up the list. Would have been another 2 hours had he not done so.

    Had he started with the Hospital they transported him to for surgery… the wait time in the ER started at 20 hours.

    No update on the Christmas decorations he was taking down.

    • My ex cracked her toe back in 2004-2005 and was at the ER for 12 hours. It’s not like we’ve ever been good at this.

      The main takeaway, I’m glad your friend got some kind of small mercy, and got that surgery done. At this point, it would seem a signal to just keep the Christmas lights up all year.

    • When I moved to the US, this was playing on the radio. I perhaps didn’t take it for the sign it should have been. 😉

      “The government is putting poison in my coffee
      So they can hunt me; mount my head up like a trophy”

    • Amusing at first. . . but then. . . oh god please make it end.

      I greatly enjoyed the series – – a lot – – but I also really disliked the unexplained inconsistencies in the big bad. It could have worked just as well – – better – – without that.

    • I adored every single bit of the post creds. Mainly because it pissed so many people off.

      There’s no inconsistencies in the big bad one bit. Worked extremely well.

      I have questions about the watch that were left unanswered. That bothered me.

      All in all probably the most consistent Marvel show outside Loki. More please.

      • 1. Well OK then!
        2. Absolutely some unexplained changes.
        3. I assume we’ll get those answers.
        4. Agreed. This was the most easily enjoyable of the Marvel shows.

  46. From twitter:

    Dr Rochelle Walensky @CDCDirector said on @GMA “the overwhelming number of death [sic] over 75% occurred in people who had at least 4 comorbidities, so really these are people who were unwell to begin with, and yes really encouraging news…”

    I don’t use the c word very often but what a cunt Dr Walensky is for spouting that eugenic crap.

    • I have not specifically fact checked the following post, but have checked some of these details before and it is in line with what I had found. Also, not mentioned below – Obiesity is a comorbidity and a high percentage of Americans don’t even realize that it would show up on THEIR death certificate.
      “If you have diabetes (32M US adults) and get diagnosed with depression (40M US adults), then depression is a comorbidity. Other comorbidities: high blood pressure, arthritis, sleep apnea, cancer, stroke, asthma, autism.

      Also, covid literally causes comorbidities.“

  47. Welp, finished Deadwood. Never thought I’d type these words.

    The movie was. . . good. . . . but way too open-ended with most of the characters. And it also didn’t really alleviate the queasiness from the f***ed-up season 3 finale.

  48. I was a bit late to the party, but finally binged and finished “Only Murders in the Building” on Hulu.

    Sublime is the word I have for it. Definite recommend and looking forward to season 2.

    • KOTOR at only #46 is a crime against humanity.

      The neglect of TIE Fighter altogether is unforgivable….actually, it seems that flight/space combat sims were completely snubbed. Really, not even a Wing Commander? shameful.

      Jack, that list is crap and I award 5 dark side points to House Slytherin on your behalf.

  49. So, I got sidetracked watching other stuff, and TOS was dropped from Netflix. I’m not paying for goddamn Paramount+, and their free trial is only 7 days.

    I’d paused after Journey to Babel in S2.

    Bummer, but it’s 2022. I can find other things to watch.

  50. Repairing a leaking toilet … day 2

    Analysis for you homeowners.
    I seems that when we had a tile floor out in a few years back, the contractor failed to make allowance for the fact that the mounting flange (which was screwed to the sub floor) was now significantly below floor level. The resulting gap meant that the new wax ring gasket was not compressed by the toilet and did not make a seal.

    I hate plumbing.
    Narrator: He really did.

    • I’ve had 2 incidents now that have convinced me not to engage in plumbing. The first was when I tried to replace an outdoor faucet, wrecked the PVC pipe inside the concrete wall, had to make a trip to the store to buy new PVC pipe supplies, create a much larger hole in the concrete and re-build the pipe inside. All while hoping I could get it done before the sun set to avoid having the water shut off to the house all night long.

      The second was trying to fix a leaking tub faucet. Internet made it look super easy and only need to replace a washer, then found out that the type of fixture I have doesn’t work that way at all. Not I had to run to the store (I have a good friend that likes to say that something isn’t a real project unless you have to run to the store and somebody bleeds) to buy an expensive piece of fixture. Then I and 3 separate friends (all of the friends had experience with plumbing) all could not manage to get the old fixture out. Had to call in a friend of a friend professional who came in and literally hacked the old piece out bit by bit by bit because it had stuck in there with sediment. What should have been a washer cost upwards of $150. Next time I’ll just let it leak.

    • My extentsive experience with plumbing consists of replacing all five toilets in my house. There was a class action lawsuit over the tanks cracking and generating extensive water damage. Thankfully, none of mine ever cracked, but they were all included in the models and manufacturing dates covered.

      I’m still amazed that I got reimbursed for all five of them. Replacing the first one took me most of an afternoon while I kept rereading directions and looking at Youtube videos. I think I got the last one swapped in about 30 minutes.

      Otherwise, I leave plumbing to the plumbers…

        • I do wish I had “the guy”.

          In my late 20’s my best friend bought a house (he was single with an engineer’s salary) and when he decided to move across town, he rented the house instead of selling it.
          He always went on about how great the extra income was but he was seldom available for FUN because now he was “the guy” for TWO properties!

  51. Hahahahaha!
    In today’s mail I got Christmas cards from both the Mangan’s and Amy. Don’t you just love the Canadian postal service?

    • Meh.
      I can recall at least two times in my life in which there were research studies done on trying to break the recomended 8 hour sleep into smaller, spread out chunks.

      In all cases it ended in failure. In one of them I can recall that initially the participants discovered they were much more productive. After some days of this though they lost the ability to concentrate and focous.

  52. CW: The Tender Bar

    There’s a scene in the film, set in the 80s, where they go ten pin bowling. So far so normal. However the bowling balls are the tiny (like crown green bowling balls size) and the pins are just vertical columns.

    So was this ever a thing in the USA???

  53. The library comes through once again! I’ve borrowed the complete Star Trek TOS: season 2 on DVD.

    I’d actually left off at The Deadly Years, which is the one where everyone ages rapidly.

    And is one of the worst episodes of the original series. Jeebus.

  54. Above and beyond my general distaste for remakes, I think remaking Hitchcock films is an extra slap in the face. Going to see a Hitchcock film was often more about enjoyment of his directing style than it was about the plot or the actors involved. So to remake a Hitchcock film is more than just bringing an old story to a younger audience. It’s directly saying that the modern director is a better director than Hitchcock. And I would doubt that.


  55. Remember before Christmas I was grumping because a friend dropped a trilogy on my to format? I guess I must have made him feel guilty. I received a $50 gift card in the mail from him today.

  56. Morning Pan
    Hubby got a chip in his windshield yesterday. Today we are trading cars so I can take his in to get it repaired. The roads better treat my car nicer.

  57. Well, as much as I worship Favreau and Filoni, we’re really struggling to dig “The Book of Boba Fett” in our little corner of the world.

    Watched the 3rd episode today…still waiting for….something.

    I’m all for the slow burn, but this thing hasn’t even found a spark yet.

  58. You know, looking at the picture I posted with Jack’s birthday greetings on Facebook…makes me realize that was the last gathering.

    What do we think about a Mmmeetup in 2022?

  59. Thanks for the birthday wishes everyone. It was a lovely day.

    We happen to be in San Diego this weekend, staying at a lovely beachfront Vrba house, primarily paid for by my aunt (long story).

    We have been avoiding the unwashed masses, just enjoying the beach.

    We will meet up with a small number of people while here, hopefully including my aunt, but always outdoors with social distancing.

  60. We’ve been playing with friends on Board Game Arena since we can’t do it live. Today we’ll be playing Gaia Project. We have this in physical form and quite enjoy it.

  61. Finally saw Eternals on the weekend. Maybe it was because I listened to the reviews and had low expectations to begin with, but we enjoyed it

  62. I’ve been reading an old book from the late 80s that I got as part of an association with the Canadian space program. It’s called “Soviet Cosmonautics: Questions and Answers”. It’s pretty interesting reading.

  63. JW: Episode 3 of the Station Eleven adaption.

    I’m slightly biased because I just love watching Cameron Mackenzie in anything but this series is really good, if you have HBO Max give it a go.

  64. I’m trying to figure out how I got to this age w/o having previously read any Lois McMaster Bujold.

    I think I’m on book 7 now of the Vorkosigan Saga. Most of the audiobooks are included on Audible w/o having to spend credits.

    Simply fantastic story telling.

  65. It would seem that Joss Whedon consulted with JK Rowling about doubling down and going on the attack when you should just lay low and be quiet.

  66. And if you do happen to have HBO Max… give the television equivalent of a brain hemorrhage that is Peacemaker a go. Jesus Lord does it trip all the right triggers

    • Hmmm. Interesting list. There are a lot of good books on there, I won’t quibble with that. Even Scalzi might argue about considering him as hard SF. Personally, Vernor Vinge should appear in that section. But yeah, as a starting point, that list is good.

  67. Mangan TV recap from the past few weeks:

    We liked Boba Fett eps 2 and 3 (I liked them more than Tiffany). Completely washed away the yuck of the first one. Not surprising. I’m not sure when we’ll get around to ep 4.

    The Expanse finale was a bit disappointing. Unsurprising. Overall, still a great show. I do think the Amazon seasons were inferior to the ScyFy seasons.

    Approaching the end of Ted Lasso s1. Really good show – – it definitely lives up to the hype. Surprisingly.

    ST: TOS: Wolf in the Fold is an extremely silly episode. I remember it being a clever plot twist, but now the whole thing is just cringe. At least the tribbles are up next.

    We’ll try to watch Eternals one of these nights.

  68. On one hand, it’s better to abuse toasters than real human beings. On the other, what possesses these dudes to engage in such behavior?

  69. Thank you all so so much for the sweet love to me and da fam, regarding Beckham. He was a cool cat. Almost 14 years old. Im glad he isnt sick anymore. It was really hard taking him away from the youngest, after she said her goodbyes. She handled it much better than I did.

    Run free and play some soccer, Becks!

  70. We all agree that comic properties should be family friendly so that all can enjoy. Movies – PG-13 at most for full family fun. But Jesus Christ, it seems the only thing that the DCEU can do correctly (besides Shazam) are hard R films/tv that don’t star major characters. If that’s the case keep it that way.

    Do you really wanna taste it?

  71. I often recall A Piece of Your Action being touted as an example of “Star Trek being silly,” but it’s always been one of my favorite episodes. Still holds up.

    This is the one where they go to the alien planet that’s modeled their society around 1920s Chicago mobsters. Totally plausible.

  72. I have now watched 3 episodes of the new Cowboy Beebop.
    As someone who never saw the anime (was it a graphic novel ? ) I review it as being “Ok.” And “entertaining”.
    I will probably watch the rest of it if I remember it next time I sit down to Netflix.