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Up and Awake, and Prepping for Gaming July 31, 2016

Posted by jkahane in conventions, health hut, life, personal, roleplaying games, rpg hut, writing & editing.
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I haven’t had a heck of a lot of sleep. Other than the four hours I got before I was woken up, I managed to nap for an hour or two, waking up several times.

That said, it’s been a productive morning. I did some reading of books, and finished off another of the novels I’m reading (just in time for the end of month stuff), I managed to participate in this morning’s Twitter #rpglifeuk chat (which was at 6:00 am, Ottawa time), and edited another section of the– um, no, can’t talk about that at all. Mental slip there.

I’m tired, and still having that problem mentioned in the previous blog entry. That said, I’ve been working the last half-hour on a scenario idea for the Polaris 3rd Edition RPG, and it’s coming along nicely. Could be the scenario for CanGames 2017, but we’ll see how that shapes up. This afternoon, I’ll be running the Primeval RPG with the Sunday gaming group. Just hope I can a) keep the plot straight and b) stay awake (not sure which of those two is more important; actually yes, I think (b) is more important).

In the meantime, I’m going to go back into the shower for another soak, and then get ready for this afternoon’s gaming session, and eat some lunch. Goddess only knows what at the moment.

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Nerve Spasms and Numbness in the Night July 31, 2016

Posted by jkahane in health hut, personal, Uncategorized.
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I can’t sleep.

I woke up at 4:15 am with nerve spasms in my left foot. Even with the Gabapentin, I’m still feeling the nerve spasms so that’s not a good thing, but the pain is somewhat bearable, but it did wake me up.

However, to make matters worse, I’ve got a total numbness in my left hand that seems to be covering just the pinky finger and the one next to it, and up the outside of the hand almost to the elbow. Not sure whether I slept on it wrong, but it feels (no pun intended)…different.

I hope this isn’t what I think it is. Good thing I have an appointment with the endocrinologist on Wednesday, though I suspect it’s way too late.

I can’t get back to sleep now, ’cause truth is… I’m scared.

Friday Evening Game Report – Primeval RPG Session 33 July 30, 2016

Posted by jkahane in personal, roleplaying games, rpg hut.
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Last night, the Friday night gaming group continued on with their ongoing Primeval RPG game campaign. Here’s the game session report. You can read about the previous session of the game in this journal entry. This post is somewhat long, and I’ve put it behind a cut so that folks who don’t want to read any detailed rpg posts don’t have to.

CHARACTERS

Amanda Tarrascon (Kathy) – Zoologist
Jessica Ransome (Angela) – Ex-Diplomat
Harrison Williams (DavidM) – Tourist Guide
Olivia Hamilton (Ellie) – Precocious Young Girl
Captain James Harris (Mark) – SAS Soldier

Monday, November 12th, 2007

In the torch-lit darkness of the parking garage of Shrewe’s Court Mall, Captain James Harris arrives where he left his men, to find two more dead, and two others badly wounded. James almost loses his temper, but reins himself in as he remember what Harrison told him earlier. He learns from [Teresa] Olsen and [John] Hawkins that they’re able and willing, and after some minor injury treatment for wounds they’ve suffered, James tells them he has a plan. They need to find several decent-sized SUVs to make it work…

Down on Sub-Level B, Amanda Tarrascon, Jessica Ransome, Harrison Williams, and Olivia Hamilton debate their new plan. Amanda says that while they’re dinosaurs, they’re still animals with animal instincts. While they may not be herd-able, she thinks that with the right incentive or motivation, the creatures could be lured back into the Anomaly. Olivia asks about the creature on the other level, and Amanda tells her to take one problem at a time. The various characters head out, cautiously, searching for what they’re looking for.

James and his SAS soldiers manage to find three moderate-sized, relatively manoeuverable SUVs, and drive them after the creature. While not intelligent, the creature is wily, and leads Harris and the soldiers a merry chase. [James has to spend 3 Story Points on his four Transport rolls.] Eventually, they manage to trap the dinosaur up against a wall blocked on three sides by the SUVs (all three of which have been somewhat damaged by the creature). James is pleased with himself, but is concerned that the creature seems somewhat stunned. It roars and bellows from time to time, but seems unable to escape from where the team Captain and his men have trapped it.

While Amanda and Harrison go in search of several vehicles, it is Olivia who turns up what the group is looking for – several packages with steaks and chicken, taken from several vehicles whose boots she’s managed to unlock [she spends 2 Story Points to do so]. Amanda and Harrison return to the meeting point, where Jessica tells them the creatures aren’t making an effort to leave the confines of the garage. Jessica says that she’ll act as the decoy for the group, though Amanda worries about her as she knows she’s been injured and isn’t 100%.

Jessica takes some of the raw steak and chicken, and goes in search of her prey. [Since Jessica has the Fresh Meat Bad Trait, things should work out just fine…] She easily finds the first of the two creatures (or does it find her?), and leads the creature on a merry chase; as she reaches the Anomaly, she throws the meat through the portal at the last moment, dodging out of the way [spending a Story Point to do so], and the creature races past her through the Anomaly, in pursuit of the meat.

Meanwhile, Harrison, Amanda, and Olivia, have driven two of the SUVs, and are slowly but surely herding the second creature towards the Anomaly. It sees Jessica, and charges towards her [due to the Bad Trait], but she manages to lunge to the side, just as Harrison’s SUV slams into the creature, knocking it through the Anomaly [he spent 3 Story Points to do so]! Both Harrison and Amanda drive their SUVs, and place them in a position to block the Anomaly off on either side [she spends a Story Point to do so]. The player characters are pretty pleased with themselves.

They congratulate themselves, and look on in horror as the Anomaly pulsates and then flickers and vanishes. After another few minutes, the lights in the parking garage flicker back to life, and the lift starts to move again. Amanda and Harrison look at each other in horror, as they realise what may have to happen with the creature on the other level.

Making their way to the other parking garage level, they see that James and his soldiers have managed to trap the creature quite effectively. Olivia blurts out that the Anomaly has vanished, and James demands of Harrison what he expects them to do with the creature now? Harrison tells him that’s easy: he does’t quite know how yet, but they’re going to have to take the creature alive with them, and back to the Home Office. James is flabbergasted by this, but starts making a call back to the H.O., while Amanda makes some calls as well; Harrison gives her some pieces of advice during the process.

Some two days later, back at the Home Office, the characters, minus Olivia, are sitting and being debriefed by Archibald Lewis. Lewis says that between them, Amanda and Harrison came up with an excellent plan. The creature, which Amanda tells them is called a Dracorex according to the palaeontology database (and confirmed by Professor Nick Cutter) is secure at a warehouse nearby, semi-detached from the operations’ base. It’s as comfortable as can be, but Archibald says that he doesn’t know what they’re going to do with it. Amanda gives him several suggestions, and advises him not to harm the creature, if at all possible. The clean-up at Shrewe’s Court Mall went as well as could be expected. but the cover story of several London zoo animals that escaped and rampaged through the area was widely accepted by the public. All that’s left now is the physical clean-up of the parking garage, and what to do about a certain young lady…

At the Hamilton home, Eileen Hamilton greets Amanda and Harrison when they arrive at the house. Summoning Olivia, the two are met with huge hugs by the youngster. They tell Olivia and her mother that the Home Office has decided to put young Olivia on a small retainer to act as a “consultant” on matters pertaining to the creatures, but that neither of them can discuss this with anyone, and agree to sign the Official Secrets Act. Beaming with pride, Olivia is told that she’ll be working closely with Amanda, and at times, Harrison. “Isn’t it great, mum? We get to deal with dinosaurs! Real life dinosaurs!” Olivia exclaims. “Just wonderful,” her mother says, somewhat aggrieved.

Last night’s game session of the Primeval RPG was a lot of fun, had some good action, some terrific roleplaying, and was an excellent wrap-up to the current scenario. I thought the final session of the adventure went really well, and that the plot came to a conclusion largely based on the actions of the player characters and how they decided to handle the situation, working to their strengths. All of the players told me that they felt that this scenario went really well, and that the addition of Mark’s character, Captain James Harris, worked out pretty well. Mark said that he enjoyed himself more than he thought he would in the game, and that the Primeval RPG game mechanics were really easy to learn and work with. The less said about Threat the better, though he admitted that it really is an effective psychological weapon.

Overall, a good night’s worth of gaming, and a lot of fun. Nice way to wrap up the Primeval RPG adventure, and I’m looking forward to next week’s gaming.

In Honour of Her Birthday… July 30, 2016

Posted by jkahane in birthday, music, personal, videos.
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In honour of her birthday…

Happy Birthday, Kate! πŸ™‚

Happy Birthday, Kate Bush! July 30, 2016

Posted by jkahane in birthday, music, personal.
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Happy Birthday, Kate Bush!

One of my favourite musicians of all-time, Kate Bush, celebrates her birthday today!

I first started listening to the music of Kate Bush back in 1978 or 1979, with her first album, The Kick Inside (1978), a brilliant progressive rock album, with tracks such as “Wuthering Heights”, “James and the Cold Gun”, “Oh, To Be in Love”, “Them Heavy People” (a track I adore), and the title track. I can’t explain what it was about the album and her voice that made me fall for the singer and want to hear more of her work. The follow-up album, Lionheart (1978) (though I don’t think I heard this album until a year later, being in Canada as I was), and it was…remarkable, superb, and even better than her first one. “Symphony in Blue”, “In Search of Peter Pan”, “Kashka From Baghdad”, “Coffee Homeground” still resonate with me.

Anyway, I’ve been listening to Kate’s music since she started, and am still a huge fan. I was also lucky enough to see her in concert back in the mid-1980s, and she is even better live. Enough already.

Here’s wishing Kate Bush a very Happy Birthday! May she have a healthy, happy, prosperous, and blessed year ahead, and may a warm breeze always blow at her back.

Getting Ready for Friday Night Gaming July 29, 2016

Posted by jkahane in food hut, personal, roleplaying games, rpg hut.
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Took a bit of a nap this afternoon for an hour or so. My body obviously needed the rest, and it did a world of good for my state of mind as well.

I’ll be gaming this evening with the Friday group, so did a minor bit of preparation work for that this afternoon. I always look forward to running the Primeval RPG, and this evening’s game session will be no exception to the rule.

Off to make a bit of supper for the evening now, but haven’t decided what it will be. Some sort of meat will be involved, most likely chicken, and some sort of veggies will be involved, and there will be some sort of grain as well. Better get to it.

Have a good night, folks. πŸ™‚

A Meme of 40+ Qs July 29, 2016

Posted by jkahane in meme, personal.
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Time for a meme. Haven’t done one of these in age. Grabbed this one from my friend, .

1. Do you like blue cheese?
Yes, but I don’t eat it a lot.

2. Have you ever smoked?
Yes, yes I have.

3. Do you own a gun?
No, thank Goddess.

4. What is your favorite flavor?
Cherry.

5. Do you get nervous before Doctor visits?
Pretty much always, but some times less nervous than others.

6. What do you think of hot dogs?
I like ’em, especially in wurst salad. πŸ™‚

7. Favorite Movie?
Kiss Me Deadly. Surprised, huh? πŸ™‚

8. What do you prefer to drink in the morning?
Water.

9. Do you do push ups?
Push-ups? Haven’t done push-ups since I developed serious arthritis.

10. What’s your favorite piece of jewelry?
Don’t have one.

11. Favorite hobby?
Reading. Second is roleplaying games.

12. Do you have A.D.D.?
Nope.

13. What’s the one thing you dislike about yourself?
My somewhat bad temper (inherited from my dad, I hear).

14. What is your middle name?
Michael.

15. Name three thoughts at this moment…
Why am I doing this meme?, what to do for lunch today? Need to do some reading of gaming material when I get home.

16. Name 3 drinks you regularly drink?
Water, herbal tea (mint or chai), and decaf coffee.

17. Current worry?
Health concern that I’m not going to discuss here.

18. Current annoyance right now?
Finding money to fix the ceiling fan in my bedroom.

19. Favorite place to be?
At home.

20. How do you ring in the new year?
I have friends over (or go over to friends), socialise, maybe do some roleplaying, go home, hit the bed.

21. Where would you like to go?
Two places in particular: Thailand, Australia.

22. Name three people who will complete this?
I really don’t have a clue.

23. Do you own slippers?
I used to. Not now.

24. What color shirt are you wearing right now?
A crisp, white shirt, with a green and silver tie. (I’m at work.)

25. Do you like sleeping on satin sheets?
Never having slept on satin sheets, I can’t say.

26. Can you whistle?
Yep.

27. What are your favorite colors?
Sunset orange, light brown or beige.

28. Would you be a pirate?
No, I don’t think so.

29. What songs do you sing in the shower?
Mostly
Jethro Tull stuff. πŸ™‚

30. Favorite girls name?
Isabella.

31. Favorite boys name?
Alexander.

32. What’s in your pocket right now?
My office pass, and a ballpoint pen.

33. Last thing that made you laugh?
Donald Trump’s latest comments in the political mess in the U.S. of A..

34. Best toy as a child?
Some Fireball XL-5 toys. πŸ™‚

35. Worst injury you ever had?
Smashed left ankle (playing hockey; required surgery).

36. Where would you love to live?
Definitely Paris. Maybe Seattle. But Ottawa’s a pretty decent city to live in as well.

37. How many TVs do you have?
One. Isn’t that enough?

38. Who is your loudest friend?
Not something I want to answer here.

39. How many dogs do you have?
None. I’m allergic to them.

40. Does someone trust you?
Yes.

41. What book are you reading at the moment?
The Dinosaur Lords by Victor Milan.

42. What’s your favorite candy?
Toffee. (Don’t eat it much, though. Diabetes and bad for the teeth.)

43. What’s your favorite sports team?
Ottawa Senators of the NHL. Also love the Arsenal Gunners of the English Premier League. πŸ™‚

44. Favourite month? May.

R.I.P. Jerry Doyle (1956-2016) July 28, 2016

Posted by jkahane in news, personal, tv hut.
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Terrible, sad news in the word of entertainment.

Jerry Doyle, the actor who played Michael Garibaldi, on the tv series Babylon 5, has died.

Babylon 5 Actor Jerry Doyle Dies at Age 60

I adored the relationship that existed by Jerry’s Michael Garibaldi and Michael O’Hare‘s Jeffrey Sinclair in the tv series, and Jerry brought such an interesting character, who managed to evolve and develop through the course of the show, even after O’Hare departed the series.

A sad loss in the industry, Jerry appeared in other shows and several movies, but he earned recognition and fame with his portrayal of Garibaldi in Babylon 5.

Jerry has passed beyond the Rim.

R.I.P. Jerry. “Goodbye, old friend.”

Blood Tests and Breakfast July 28, 2016

Posted by jkahane in food hut, health hut, personal.
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Just got in to the office.

Already extremely warm outside here in Ottawa.

I went to the hospital for my 3-month set of blood tests, and had to deliver up 6 vials of the red stuff (mine is red, I hope yours is too!) and 2 containers of pee. Oh, joy! Oh, bliss!

From there, it was over to Dunn’s Famous Deli for a late breakfast. I would have gone to Denny’s, but far as I know, there’s no Denny’s around Ottawa any longer. Breakfast was good, but I couldn’t combine pancakes with eggs and get some decent extras with it for a reasonable price, but the decaf coffee is good and they have sugar-free maple syrup (that was like runny stuff).

Now I’m at work.

Time to get busy.

The Polaris 3rd Edition RPG GM Screen July 27, 2016

Posted by jkahane in personal, photos, roleplaying games, rpg hut.
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As mentioned yesterday, my copies of the various Polaris 3rd Edition RPG game materials from backing the game Kickstarter have arrived. Since some folks didn’t order the GM Screen for the game, I figured I would post up some photos of the GM Screen here. So let’s get on with it. πŸ™‚


The “Booklet” that comes with the GM Screen

The picture above (excuse my lousy photography skills) shows the outermost blurb for the GM Screen package. This contains the GM Screen itself (see below) and the booklet of additional GM Charts all organised by function (see below).


The loose sheets of GM Charts included with the Screen

The photo above shows the pages of the GM Charts included with the Polaris GM Screen. Like all the printed materials for the game, these sheets are somewhat thicker than normal, and are quite solid. Lovely.


The Polaris RPG GM Screen, Interior

The picture above shows the interior of the GM Screen for the Polaris 3rd Edition RPG. All the tables that one could hope for that are of use during play. A nice matte finish, so the interior of the GM Screen isn’t too bright or reflective. Just right. (And a lot of game companies could learn from this.)


The Polaris RPG GM Screen, Exterior

The above photo shows the exterior panels of the Polaris 3rd Edition RPG GM Screen. A magnificent piece of artwork featuring the neutral city of Equinox by Simon Labrousse, with a spot UV varnish that covers only parts of the cover to make them stand out. Simply marvellous, and absolutely beautiful.

And for those who didn’t pick up the GM Screen through the Kickstarter, it will be available in shoppes around August 31st or so. πŸ™‚

Any thoughts, comments, or general remarks are more than welcome. πŸ™‚