Previously, in Trip's Life...

31 August 2020 - Monday

Ooogh, Monday.


Read:

  • "A Cup of Salt Tears" (Isabel Yap): Tragic kappa love.
  • "The Commonplace Book" (Jacob Clifton): Alternate future Lady Babbage with steampunk quantum AI?
  • "A Stroke of Dumb Luck" (Shiloh Walker): Lady monster hunter vs sleazy wererats.

Microwave food, but also panzanella.


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30 August 2020 - Sunday

Today I did pretty much nothing.


Watched:

  • The Umbrella Academy 2.3: Dallas in 1963 pretty much sucks for black people. Also, Luther is a dumbass.

Read:

  • "In the Sight of Akresa" (Ray Wood): I'm good with queer characters, but not when the only point is secondary-world homophobia.
  • "Intestate" (Charlie Jane Anders): It's hard to repossess someone's body, legally speaking, at least the first time.

Mustard chicken and confused salad.


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29 August 2020 - Saturday

Blugh, on call.

Blugh,shopping. I really should do it earlier in the day.

Blugh, Zoomwarts. In this episode, Bella gets more detention, doesn't see Harry Potter, spills almost all the beans to Dumbledore, terrorizes some house elves, but doesn't quite turn completely evil. She might have if I hadn't had to end the session due to work call, though!

My coworker K stopped by to get quarters, since his bank is entirely online and thus he cannot get quarters from it. I guess there's some advantage to being old-fashioned after all.


Watched:

Read:

  • "Old Media" (Annalee Newitz): Part future robot romance, part Ouran Highschool Host Club fanwork. So I guess the prose equivalent of a Questionable Content strip.
  • "The Ruined Queen of Harvest World" (Damien Broderick): Cordwainer Smith homage, with uplifted murder cats and the mythic future using some language of science.

Pizza, which is a perfectly ordinary thing to fetch.


Words: Check, just barely. At least I made notes for tomorrow.

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28 August 2020 - Friday

I am always ready for Friday.


Read:

  • "The Time Invariance of Snow" (E Lily Yu): The Snow Queen, with physics metaphors.
  • "Porn & Revolution in the Peaceable Kingdom" (Micaela Morrissette): Problematic behaviors of pet humans in a nominally enlightened future.
  • "A Kiss With Teeth" (Max Gladstone): Vlad Dracula, family man.
  • "Feature Development for Social Networking" (Benjamin Rosenbaum): Facebook programmers remain dedicated to fucking with the UI even during a zombie apocalypse.
  • "Jubilee" (Karl Schroeder): Short piece in the Lockstep universe, showing how big the difference gets.
  • "As Good As New" (Charlie Jane Anders): It's always good to be able to take time to think about your three wishes.
  • "A Beautiful Accident" (Peter Orullian): The spirituality of consensual torture.
  • "The Best We Can" (Carrie Vaughn): What if humanity is too self-absorbed and capitalism-hobbled to deal with first contact?
  • "Angel Season" (JT Petty): Father-son bonding over rural supernatural murders (not considered murder in the US).
  • "Brimstone and Marmalade" (Aaron Corwin): They should have gotten her the pony.
  • "Cold Wind" (Nicola Griffith): Long-term supernatural serial killings.
  • "The Cairn in Slater Woods" (Gina Rosati): Spooky woods and short skirts.

Toaster oven and leftovers.


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27 August 2020 - Thursday


Read:

  • The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks (E Lockhart): An ambitious girl at an elite school isn't content being adored by her boyfriend who she happens to know is in a secret society, she wants to be respected and included. So she takes action. This was not a super-comfortable book, but you know, fuck teenage tumbrel-bait guys.

Maple chicken and potatos and asparagus.


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26 August 2020 - Wednesday

This week in 13G, Kelnalynn talks to an expert about getting the team a wyter, Mernyr gets smooches and most of a new arm, Garstal and Kuji get library access, and I'm not sure what Jorandona gets.


Read:

  • Shadow Captain (Alastair Reynolds): This volume of the trilogy is more about how piracy is never a victimless crime, and live ammo is not a toy. But, the sisters are getting closer to the answers they want, even if they have to destroy the entire financial system to do it.
  • Bone Silence (Alastair Reynolds): This final volume is much more space opera than pirate, but then the second volume showed why piracy is not so great. It is also full of answers, which are not necessarily like solutions.

Microwave food.


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25 August 2020 - Tuesday

Work meetings, work meetings, la la la.


Watched:

    The Umbrella Academy 2.1: Huh, okay, that's a lot of doom. I think Five may have an unfortunate affinity for apocalypse.

Tomato-basil chicken.


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24 August 2020 - Monday

Another increment in this timeless whirlpool of dystopic eternity.


Read:

  • Spy x Family (Tatsuya Endo) vol 1: I read a scanlation of this a while back and am glad it's getting published for real.
  • Revenger (Alastair Reynolds): Reread in preparation for reading the sequels. I had forgotten what a good pirate story this is: running away from home, ominous black sails, hidden cursed treasure, cold-blooded plots, bloody revenge.

Did I eat food? Probably. Maybe Chinese leftovers.


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23 August 2020 - Sunday

Second session of Princess World! It was not completely disastrous, even though the players still could not fail a roll to save my life. Hazel got more into it, most of the nonsense I came up with held together, and people wanted at least one more session.

smoky

Last of the Chinese for dinner.


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22 August 2020 - Saturday

Whee, on call starting at 7:30. But the cleaners will be here at 8 so it's not that much extra pain as long as the customers are quiet.

Oh, hm, the cleaners did not show up at 8. Oh well, I'm up, might as well go grocery shopping.

I survived grocery shopping, although it is still much too August, but ugh. Saturdays are always stressful.

We successfully played Zoomwarts, and Bella caused more trouble by getting haunted and set on fire in the middle of class.Then there was a lot of running around trying to get in touch with the Golden Trio in their dungeon to ask Hermione's advice, and Bella dropped her family photo in the hall and couldn't find it. Surely it won't mean anything to anyone who happened to pick it up, right?

Then Marith was dead because of capitalism, so we stopped gaming and had no anime, only Zuul.


Chinese takeaway for lunch and dinner.


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21 August 2020 - Friday

Yay, it's Friday. But only kind of, because I'm on call tomorrow.

Back to being somewhat blarghy but not as much as early in the week.


Read:

  • Shards of the Broken Sky (ASH LAW, Rob Heinsoo): What happens when an overworld city crashes into a hidden valley full of things the Archmage wanted forgotten? Adventure! Like most 13A sourcebooks, it has enough ideas on every page to make an entire campaign.

Microwave food.


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20 August 2020 - Thursday

I stayed up until a million o'clock at night, yet today I am more awake than I have been for a while. What is up with that, body?


Read:

Apparently after reading Harrow the Ninth, what my brain wanted was more books about space. And it still does, which makes me wonder if it wants to write about space, but all my space writing is terrible, so that doesn't seem like a good idea.

  • Finder (Suzanne Palmer): This is the book I stayed up too late finishing. I guess it's a space western: the hero with a past comes into an isolated frontier community with internal strife on a mission of his own, and triggers the imepending conflict which he can't help but get invested in. Partway through there's a sudden left turn with terrifying aliens that would be at home in Ancillary Mercy and a brief return to civilization, but everything is resolved.
  • The Tea Master and the Detective (Aliette de Bodard): What if Watson was a cyborg starship with PTSD and Holmes was a drug-enhanced former criminal? And they were on a space station?

I guess I probably ate something?


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19 August 2020 - Wednesday

There is less heat, so why am I still blargh?


This week in 13th Age Glorantha, the heroes set out on their quest and immediately get the everliving daylights beaten out of them by dragonnewts. Fortunately they are rescued by local Orlanthi heroes and do not actually die, although Mernyr is going to need her arm stuck back on.

Powerful RuneQuest characters feel very different than I think high-level 13G characters would, although maybe that's just a matter of description.


Read:

  • The Starfighter Invitation (Andrea K Höst): "This new VR game is way way too good to be true! Oh." Looks like it was meant to be the start of a series that didn't materialize?

Leftover pasta with pesto.


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18 August 2020 - Tuesday

Work meetings survived, mostly.


Watched:

    Leverage 4.4: Using the same actors for the characters in the 70-year flashback was nice.

Read:

  • "That Game We Played During The War" (Carrie Vaughn): How does chess work with telepathy?
  • "The Thing About Growing Up In Jokertown" (Carrie Vaughn): Disadvantaged teens in the "Wild Cards" universe have an adventure.
  • "The Story of Kao Yu" (Peter S Beagle): Judge in historical fantasy China runs afoul of a Bad Girl.
  • "The Scholast in the Low Waters Kingdom" (Max Gladstone): Posthuman fantasy. Would make a good RPG setting.
  • "Overtime (Charles Stross)": Christmas is not okay in the Laundry universe. (reread)
  • "Red As Blood and White As Bone" (Theodora Goss): Fairy tale in early C20, not from the princess's PoV. (reread)
  • "No Flight Without The Shatter" (Brooke Bolander): Insert sobbing emoji here. Even though the story may be better than the real-world outcome.
  • "Listen" (Karin Tidbeck): Semi-sequel to "Sing", in which different humans interact with the ecosystem.
  • "His Footsteps, Through Darkness and Light" (Mimi Mondal): Ethical djinn relations.
  • "The Martian in the Wood" (Stephen Baxter): Aftermath of the War of the Worlds. I think Baxter is soft on Martians.
  • "The Last Banquet of Temporal Confections" (Tina Connolly): Pastries that evoke memories, and clever uses thereof.

Ground turkey pasta.


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17 August 2020 - Monday

Still too hot, and also work.


Read:

  • Harrow the Ninth (Tamsyn Muir): Extremely confusing sequel to Gideon the Ninth, but all (well, enough) is explained in the end. I don't think it's as good as Gideon, probably because of a lack of Gideon, but I will still definitely read the next one.
  • Tales From The Folly (Ben Aaronovitch): Short stories set in the "Rivers of London" universe, some about Peter, some about other characters. They are all pretty charming.
  • "Sweetlings" (Lucy Taylor): Climate change means there's more sea for the horror to come from.
  • "Sing" (Karin Tidbeck): Interstellar colonists reach an accomodation with the local ecosystem.
  • "Nine Last Days on Planet Earth" (Daryl Gregory): Interstellar ecosystem colonizes Earth.
  • "Sanctuary" (Allen Steele): Interstellar colonists reach a less salubrious accomodation with the local ecosystem.

Leftover Chinese for lunch and dinner.


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16 August 2020 - Sunday

There was lightning and some thunder between midnight and dawn, and I hear there was wind but I missed it. Yet, today there is only blue sky and blazing death. Fortunately, I don't have to do anything today. Marith does, but she has AC at work, at least.


Read:

  • Komi Can't Communicate (Tomohito Oda) vol 8: There was more Komi in this one, not just random weirdos, so it was much better. I am now considering getting vol 9, where before I was definitely not.

Chinese takeaway for lunch, even though it meant going out into the horrifying heat that was supposed to be gone yet is still here. Curse you, hideous giant day-orb!

More Chinese takeaway for dinner.


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15 August 2020 - Saturday

Why is it so hot when all I want to do is shopping?

It's too hot for gaming.


Watched:

Not too hot for anime, somehow.

  • Fruits Basket (2019) 16-18: Yuki continues to become a functional human being. Haru is already there, most of the time. Isuzu... not so much.

Actually too hot for food this time.


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14 August 2020 - Friday

It is even hotter now. Too hot. I do not approve.


Watched:

  • The Old Guard: Finished! It was good! Charlize Theron is an excellent action heroine. I hear she imprinted on Ripley from Alien at an impressionable age, which seems totally legit.

Read:

  • Kingdom of Z (Saizou Harawata, Lon Watanuki) vol 1: Meh. There was one bit about getting infinite energy from putting a zombie on a treadmill, but that was the only interesting bit.

Too hot for food. But I ate some microwave food anyway so I wouldn't die.


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13 August 2020 - Thursday

Work. Other work. Meeting. Whatever. It's hot.


Read:

  • Gideon the Ninth (Tamsyn Muir): Reread because I started to read the sequel and realized I didn't remember enough of the names and stuff. Still awesome, although the language is maybe too idiomatic.
  • 13th Age Book of the Underworld (Gareth Ryder-Hanrahan): The underdark, 13th Age style: lost ages, lost icons, spider monsters, dwarves, lost cities, an assortment of campaign-ending horrors to choose from, travel montages, all the good stuff.

Microwave food.


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12 August 2020 - Wednesday

I finally went to the dentist to finish the deep cleaning that was started way back in the Before Times. I got the same hygienest, who remembered me and was super-nice and did not stab my mouth before the anaesthetic kicked in, so it was all entirely fine.

When I got home, there was still some of the work day left, but I felt kind of bleah so I took a nap instead. I am a bad, bad capitalism.

I woke up in time to play 13th Age Glorantha, in which the PCs returned the bodies of the newtlings' kinfolk to them in exchange for information which was not enormously helpful. They also met a strange person, although this one claimed to be called Aquafina of the Four Books. They did not have the object the PCs sought, or any hint as to its whereabouts, but when the PCs went back to report failure, it turned out Gringle had been able to use divination magic to find the name of the person the purse was used on behalf of, and it's someone he knows.

New plan: hash out some sort of contract to get supported while searching for the purse and rewarded upon finding it, then go to the boss of the person who interacted with the purse and find out where they are, then go find them and ask who they sold something to for X amount on Y date, then find that person. And drop off this present to the new queen on the way.


Microwave food.


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11 August 2020 - Tuesday

Work meetings. Work. Bleah.


Watched:

  • The Old Guard: Only the first half or so, since Marith had to capitalism, but it was pretty good.

Creamy lemon dill salmon and panzanella and stuffed gnocchi.

Do not use fresh bread to make panzanella, it's a pain (and that would be French, not Italian).


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10 August 2020 - Monday

Monday? Again? Do we have to do this every week?


Read:

  • The Voyages of Cinrak the Dapper (AJ Fitzwater): This was advertised as "lesbian capybara pirate" and indeed that is the main character. It is much more a collection of fairytale events that Cinrak happens to be involved in than the story of Cinrak, but that's okay. It is definitely heartwarming and queer.

Microwave food.


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9 August 2020 - Sunday

Finally, we played Princess World! I guess it went okay? Kind of?

Dave did a nice writeup of the in-character events. Out of character, Hazel had a lot of trouble coming up with stuff, in what seems like the way I have trouble coming up with stuff under pressure. Everyone else got into it pretty quickly and we were able to have some fun. Possibly such an unstructured game means we have the fun that is very characteristic of us, and not new fun?

We tentatively plan to continue next session unless people come to their senses over email.


Chinese takeaway.


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8 August 2020 - Saturday

I did the shopping in that direction, and then I did the shopping in this direction, and then I got some Thai food but the larb was Too Spicy. But at least I was home and could take off my mask and drink Thai iced tea.

In the afternoon, I ran more Zoomwarts for Jus and Marith and the plush lizards. This time, all the PCs executed their plan to sneak into the dungeons and find Harry Potter and his sidekicks, but they all brought a bunch of other students with them, to everyone's disgust. Anyway, they did find their way to the dank cells where the heroes of some other series were being held, fawn over Harry and leave him a note, and get back out. Bella sacrificed herself and her dignity to lead Snape astray in the form of a dancing chicken, so she was the only one dragged away by her ear and subjected to the Dumbledore Stare. Alas, her background prepared her for this and she did not rat out the other students.

Also the mysterious creature from the glass says Karkadan the Blue Unicorn, Daughter of Death, is coming. Probably not important.


Watched:

  • Fruits Basket (2019) 2.13-15: Poor Mayu, no one should have to deal with that much Shigure. Ayame is not so terrible, though. Haru may be my favorite, though.

Instant pot brown sugar garlic sesame paprika chicken.


Words: Less than 100, so FAIL.

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7 August 2020 - Friday

Played way too much sudoku.


Microwave food.


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6 August 2020 - Thursday

I did some works. I guess it was productive.

Also I finished the diet ginger beer, which was pretty good even though I am normally only so-so about ginger beer. Maybe I should see if the nearby BevMo stocks it.


Microwave food.


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5 August 2020 - Wednesday

This week in 13G, the PCs turn chop each other's arms off, turn wanted criminals loose, give away goods stolen from their employer and ally to literal baboons and then lie about it, and admit to being Chaos-tainted. Okay, actually that was all Mernyr, but since she's the leader, everyone will share in her ignominy.

Also we confirmed that we all still like the game and will not depose Mike.


Microwave food.


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4 August 2020 - Tuesday

I found (well, identified that a customer found, and reported to the approprite personages) a major issue with the new version today, so I feel like I have demonstrated my value to the company. I doubt anyone else agrees.


Watched:

  • The Untamed/Chen qing ling 1.5: Finally out of the No Fun Zone and on the hunt for Water Ghosts! But weren't the noncombatants supposed to stay well back? Oops.

Salad with goat cheese, tilapia with garlicky butter.


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3 August 2020 - Monday

Ugh, another week. I think this one is number twenty out of probably the rest of the decade because fucking morons keep voting Republicans into positions of power and now we have no functional government.


Read:

  • "Seven Commentaries on an Imperfect Land" (Ruthanna Emrys): Magical countries are all around us, if only we would see them.
  • "The Maiden Thief" (Melissa Marr): Yeah, fuck that guy.
  • "The Order of the Pure Moon Reflected In Water" (Zen Cho): A nun meets some bandits in a war-torn fantasy Asia (not entirely sure what part). It goes both better and differently for both sides than might be expected.

Finished the leftover Chinese.


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2 August 2020 - Sunday

I was not very useful at all today. Which, I mean, okay, it's a weekend, but that's when I should be doing stuff that matters instead of stuff for capitalism! But what I actually did was play sudoku until my brain fell off.

Apparently the next alternate Sunday game will indeed be Princess World. I wonder if it will be a disaster?


Read:

  • "The Mysterious Study of Doctor Sex" (Tamsyn Muir): A side story to Gideon the Ninth etc. It is not actually about sex, but it is about death, because duh. No spoilers for the main book.

I managed to get Thai food for lunch, and ate some more of the Chinese food for dinner, so yay.


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1 August 2020 - Saturday

Shopping, more shopping in the other direction, order Chinese takeaway, get Thai iced tea, get food, finally get home and take off my mask and be completely useless forever.

I'm still not sure what I think about Good Sudoku taking all the really mindless bits out, but it's certainly addictive.


Ken kindly dropped off some spare diet ginger beer and non-diet Girl Scout cookies that their household had no need for.


Read:

  • "Her Scales Shine Like Music" (Rajnar Vajra): Spectacular alien encounter.

Chinese takeaway for lunch and dinner and probably breakfast tomorrow.


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