The new Riddick: Rule the Dark! (exclamation mark added for emphasis; why doesn't it come with an exclamation mark? All Riddick movies should come with exclamation marks) comes on in just over a week!

As if I needed any more reasons to see this movie, this'll do it: Riddick saves a space-puppy!

Click the image to see the short clip.

I love Vin Diesel for many reasons, but here's another one:


Click the image to see the Penny Arcade page.

In other news, I'm heading to LoneStarCon3 on Friday morning (meaning I miss the James Gunn Guest-of-Honor reception on Thursday evening, which I helped organize... stupid first day of only-once-a-week class). Here's my WorldCon schedule (with a couple items I helped organize but can't attend):

6:00pm - 8:00pm: Reception for students and close associates of Guest of Honor James Gunn

If you want to be part of this but haven't yet gotten an invite, let me know ASAP and I'll try to get you on the invite list! I'm sad that I can't attend, but I get to see Jim every week. Still, what's up with WorldCon starting on the Thursday of the first week of classes? ARGH.

5:00pm: "When is Hard SF Too Hard"
008A (Convention Center)
Nancy Kress, Michael J. Martinez, Christopher McKitterick, Jack Skillingstead.
Our panelists discuss the delicate balance between punching a button to go into hyperspace, and reaching for your calculator to figure out if you really could.

4:00pm: "Cartography of Genre: Roman Epic Space Opera and the Academic Legacy of Jim Gunn"
008A (Convention Center)
Christopher McKitterick (Mod), Donald M. Hassler, Bob Cape
This includes a couple of papers: "Space Opera and the Greco-Roman Epic" Bob Cape, Austin College; "A Key Cartographer of the Genre: Jim Gunn" Donald M. "Mack" Hassler, Kent State University.

5:00pm: James Gunn Tribute
103B (Convention Center)
Michael Page, Gary K. Wolfe, Kij Johnson, Christopher McKitterick, John Kessel, and hopefully others!
A tribute by our panelists to LoneStarCon 3 Guest of Honor, James Gunn.

5:30pm - 6:00pm: Reading: Christopher McKitterick
This one is uncertain, as at first I had thought I wasn't going to still be at the con on Sunday evening, so maybe and maybe not. *sigh*

Do you know a teacher, parent, librarian or anyone else interested in getting SF into the hands of young folks? The Center's two new AboutSF Volunteer Coordinator student-employees will present a "Teaching Science Fiction: A Workshop for Teachers, Librarians, and Parents" for much of the day on Monday. In their trial-run at ConQuest this year, they gave a fantastic presentation, and have been working hard at this longer version. I can't participate, as I'm on the plane during this time, but they'll do a great job, I'm sure. Check 'em out!

Okay, back to 1) writing and 2) work!

Oh, and two local SFnal activities coming up this week!

First up, on Wednesday, we have Super Nerd Night: Steampunk Hillbilly Edition. The major event starts at 9:00pm, but there's a Magic: The Gathering tourney that begins at 7:00pm. Tons of great stuff after that, including costuming, gaming, live music, and much more, plus it takes place in a bar, so you can get your boozin' on. Best of all, proceeds benefit AboutSF, the Center's educational-outreach program.

Then on Thursday, the Lawrence Public Library is hosting a live video chat with the authors of The Mongoliad; Neal Stephenson, Greg Bear, E.D. deBirmingham, Mark Teppo, Joseph Brassey, Erik Bear, and Cooper Moo! The event starts at 6:00pm, but of course you can just watch it from home on Ars Technica.

Today has been a riot of Risk (classic), Risk 2210, Flux, Magic, Munchkin, and movies. Had great fun with lots of friends - including one in from out of town (hey, [ profile] amjhawk!) - and now I'm beat. Hope y'all had a great day, too.

This is so cool: The first gaming convention in Iraq, for soldiers serving over there. They need help with it, though; read the info below to learn how you can help. Thanks for the tip from [ profile] fjm.
Over here you'll find a call for assistance from Ziggurat Con, a gaming convention.

Ziggurat Con [is] being held June 9 from 1200 to 2100 hours at Camp Adder/Tallil Airbase, is open to all allied military personnel and civilian contractors in Iraq.

The largest problem with running a Con in Iraq, of course, is that there are no local stores or game publishers, and few game books on the post. Even dice are in short supply, with many soldiers breaking the unwritten taboo held by many gamers and (gasp!) sharing dice. Thankfully, many game publishers have also lent their support, and have agreed to supply game products to help the Con along. aethereal FORGE, Sovereign Press, Final Redoubt Press, Goodman Games, Paizo Publishing and Steve Jackson Games are among those that have thrown in their support for the convention. But Amberson indicated that the soldiers could definitely use more.

"This convention is currently in drastic need of prizes and giveaways for the troops," he said. "Everything donated will go directly to the troops, or to MWR to use as loaner books for the soldiers."

For more information, contact SPC David Amberson at the following address: david.amberson (at)

Donations can also be sent to SPC Amberson directly at the following address:

SPC David Amberson
A Co 86th Sig Bn
APO, AE 09331
mckitterick: Yes, this is one of my actual scooter helmets. RESPECT THE EMPIRE. (hearse - before)
( Oct. 4th, 2006 11:11 pm)
Kinda stayed up too late last night due to inability to sleep at least partially brought on by a box of cards that [ profile] jeanineers and [ profile] woadwarrior sent home with me. (I must confess that I have already made a new deck with it and modified most of my others already, ahem.)

Anyway, got myself over to the hearse for a while today, and GRRRR I'm getting tired of working on the thing. I have spent far too many hours on something that shouldn't even be a step in the renovation process, the damned ignition switch. [ profile] woadwarrior's clever idea about the dent puller "a million car thieves can't be wrong" worked great on pulling the old switch, but I stupidly slipped the new one into the column before using the traditional "screwdriver key" used by said millions... and of course it turns out that there's something wrong inside the column so that the switch doesn't turn anything. So I tried to remove the new switch only to discover that there's another thing wrong with the column, the issue that prevented removing the old switch.


So after... I dunno, an hour of frustrated attempts to remove more of the column, I gave up and tried to pull the new switch using the dent puller. Well, turns out you first need to drill the switch to give the puller some purchase. Guess what I forgot to bring along? Yeah.

ANY-way, I gave the fuck up and am just about ready to start looking for a new victim, er, owner of said hearse. Tomorrow I go out there again (11.2 miles each way, several on gravel), and if the sum'beach doesn't at least reach the point where I can TRY to start it, it begins looking for a new home.

Oh, and when I came home, I cleverly put my billfold through the washer. Ah-huh.

Tomorrow will be better, yes!

Yes, I'm a Magic player among other gaming interests. Last weekend, I played in the Time Spiral pre-release tournament and was surprised at the introduction of true "chase" cards in Magic. Chase cards are rarer-than-rare cards that require people to buy a lot of random packs to collect them all. The new chase cards are reprints of old, out-of-print cards. For a while, Magic has also had special "foils," which aren't really chase cards in that the cards are printed normally, too; I've found those irritating, because lots of kids want to have all the foils.

For the new chase cards, Wizards of the Coast introduced "purple" rarity for reprints in addition to the established black (common), silver (uncommon), and gold (rare), so it's clear this is a new rarity. Sigh. Fine for me, in that I have the old cards, but what about the new kids?

I guess we all saw it coming with the Hasbro buyout; we should be grateful it's taken this long.

What do you think of this?

As Bella just noted in an email, last time most people ate before showing up, leaving a couple of folks hungri-lated. Let's plan to order pizza at, say, 6pm tonight. Those who arrive late can eat beforehand or chow on the remains.

See you soon!

Last night was great fun, so let's keep it going!

To be inclusive of y'all who can't come on Thursdays, and so we can see [ profile] chernobylred dance at Aladdin next Thursday, let's get together at my joynt next Wednesday at 6pm.

We really oughta try "Ebola Monkey Hunt" when Stu is here! Kij is picking up some new games for me at GenCon as we speak. I hear one of them is "Beer Money," featuring the grown-up girl from "Lunch Money." Heh.

See ya then!

Dear friends -

I've decided that it's been way too long since I've gamed, so it's high time I get back into it again! I really enjoyed having a weekly gaming night at my place in Seattle, and I would love to have that again.

We have a big assortment of games (board, miniature, tabletop, card, roleplaying, and so on), so I'll have a big selection to choose from when y'all show up.

After tonight's survey, it sounds as if Thursday nights might be good. Does that work for you? I'll just plan that this Thursday (say, starting at 6pm) will be the first night -- especially considering that I'll be missing out on GenCon this year, the first time I would have gone :-(

Favorite game you want to try? If I don't have it, bring it! We oughta be able to try a coupla things without going too late. If'n someone wants to play late into the night, I'm up for die-hards, too. Let's see if I can remember what I have offhand:

list behind the cut; I'll continue to update it after going home )
Who's interested? Once we find out who's a regular, we can talk about maybe inviting others, but at first I wanted to keep the invite list limited to people I know I'd have fun gaming with.

I presume we won't get into roleplaying games (at least not right away!), so of course you needn't commit to every week. And non-gaming-types are welcome to just hang out with other non-gamers and chat and such, or watch, or whatever. And if you show up late, that's cool, but whoever's there by 6pm will be the first round (or should we start at 5pm?). Bring your favorite munchable, or we can order a pizza or something.

Lemme know!


mckitterick: Yes, this is one of my actual scooter helmets. RESPECT THE EMPIRE. (Default)


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