Thursday, March 31, 2005

"That is not dead which can eternal lie..."

The Delta Green campaign setting is showing new signs of life, as the folks at the Delta Green Yahoo Group have spawned a new Delta Green Wiki, based on content salvaged from the still-operational (but, because of a technological screw up, no longer updatable) Ice Cave.

BRP snobbery aside, the Delta Green Yahoo Group (like the DGList before it) is a great resource for Call of Cthulhu, and is particularly good at tainting modern day events with the Cthulhu mythos.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Bloggers in Pennsylvania?

It turns out that there are a few bloggers in Pennsylvania. The key word, though, being "few". I could only find one other blogger in Easton, but I've got to think there at least another one or two.


Months after saying "pop-pop" for the first time to describe her grandfathers, Jordan has finally broken down and started calling her grandmothers "G'Ma".

In other Jordan-related language news ... she now says "Daddy's Apple" when she sees any of my Macs, proudly told Sue that "Daddy's Jeep is red!" and that the loud sound overhead was from a "heck-la-oper" (it was a plane, rather than a helicopter, but you try convincing a two year old she's wrong).

And, of course, she still steadfastly refuses to say her name is "Jordan". Nope, as far as she's concerned, her name is still "You".

Blatant Self Promotion, 3/30 Edition

On the professional writing front, I've got a review of the fan web site BattleTech Universe up on In print, Knights of the Dinner Table #100 is out, and includes my "Summon Web Scryer" column, which talks all about Torg.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Chaos With Radio Active

I violated the first rule of web design with Nuketown's new Radio Active podcast, and did not check all the urls in the RSS feed. Dumb, dumb, DUMB! This prevented iPodderX and other podcatching clients from downloading the show.

Everything's fixed now. Or it should be ... I have to check it when I get home to night. Many thanks to Evo of The Dragon Page for reporting the problem and helping me test the corrected feed.

Paragraphs Would Be Nice

David Duchovny, of X-Files fame, has a blog promoting his new film House of D, which he directed and stars in. It appears to be a coming-of-age/mid-life-crisis sort of indie movie (and thus, no grey aliens doing unnatural things to his nasal cavities).

I haven't read much of it yet, but I will say this: David, you really, really need to add some paragraphs to your posts. The Block-o-Text approach is just way too hard on the eyes.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

The Fires of Heaven

This is going to be a most excellent commuting week. My Jeep Wrangler, which got rear-ended a few weeks ago, is back in commission and ready to be driven. That's good news, but it's made even better by the fact that I just snagged Robert Jordan's Fires of Heaven as one of my download picks for March. That means I've now got 36 hours of fantasy goodness sitting on my iPod, just waiting to be listened to.

Coupled with a few of my favorite podcasts (Geek News Central, The Dragon Page, Driving Decompressions) downloaded over the weekend, and I've got one great week of audio lined up.

Friday, March 25, 2005

"She's Gone From Suck to Blow!"

I received the following feedback from a disgrunted Nuketown reader today:
Subject: You suck
Message: Did Ayn Rand blow you, or what?

Naturally this person was so proud of this witty little e-mail that he didn't include a valid response e-mail address (instead using the highly entertaining and oh-so-inspired false address "").

Since my own response can not reach this presumed champion of the downtrodden and herald of the masses, I'll post it here instead.
Message: Thank you for the enlightened commentary. I'm glad you took the time to submit such a thoughtful--and entertaining-- rebuttal to whatever it was you didn't like about Nuketown. It's feedback like this that really makes it all worthwhile.

Actually, I'm not kidding about that last bit. I enjoy provoking responses like this with my writing, although I really wish I knew what post got this guy's panties in a bunch.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Cold Front

Sue's is getting over her virus, but is still quarantined on the sofa bed. Both Sue and Jordan have pink eye, which is also in retreat.

Me? I'm gulping vitamin C and drinking lots of orange juice, which probably won't do a damned thing to help, but which makes a nice post-modern ward against viral evil. I thought about smearing garlic paste around the door jams, but it's such a bitch to get out of the molding.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Spycraft 2.0? has a blurb about Alderac's new lineup, including a mention of Spycraft 2.0:
"The Spycraft RPG has been a staple in the RPG industry now since it was released in 2002...three years later, we bring you Spycraft RPG 2.0! Updated and re-tooled for better gaming on your players part! A brand new, more focused skill system, as well as a chase/dramatic situations system that will blow your socks off! The Spycraft CCG is no longer carrying the D20 logo, as it has grown into its own and differs from the way that system works. This new system is definitely what you and your customers need for expert espionage roleplaying! Releasing in July, 2005."

Now you'll note that this mentions the "Spycraft CCG"; I'm assuming that's a typo, given the context of the rest of the paragraph (and that the paragraph after it specifically discusses the collectible card game).

The forums have a discussion of what this means, and no, Alderac isn't dumping d20 entirely. The game's going "open gaming license" instead, which basically means that a) they can include all the rules for leveling up a character in the game and b) as a result, they can no longer display the d20 logo.

I think this makes a lot of sense; both Spycraft and Stargate suffered from relying on the D&D Player's Handbook for advancement. Heck, I'm an experienced player and I still got confused by their cryptic references to what was needed from the PHB.

That said, I'm taking a wait-and-see attitude with Spycraft 2.0. If it does what I want to it to do (overhaul the mastermind system based on the Fixer/Pointman splatbook, incorporate NPC classes, pull together the myriad backgrounds and feats from the assorted source books) then I'll consider converting. Otherwise, I'm content to stick with the hodgepodge I know, rather than the one I don't.

Which Fantasy/SciFi Character Are You?

Berin asked, so I figured I'd answer.

Which Fantasy/SciFi Character Are You?

Sayeth the machine: "An accomplished diplomat who can virtually do no wrong, you sometimes know it is best to rely on the council of others while holding the reins."

Oh well, win some, lose some...

Tuesday, March 22, 2005


Ursinioid, the personal blog of's Berin Kinsman, is back online. Go there. Be amused. Be enlightened. Repeat as necessary.

My Mac Guys Podcast

I just found a new podcast to listen to, thanks to Podcast Shuffle. The My Mac Guys podcast features two guys, well, talking about their Macs.

I've only listened to one so far--which talked about kids and Macs--but I liked what I heard. They've got the friendly banter thing down, and I like the combination of opinion and practical tips.

Plague Ward, Day 3

Sue continues to camp on the sofa bed downstairs as she battles what the doctor described as "a nasty virus that we really can't do anything about." Jordan's feeling better, but still grumpy, and still on a wacky sleep schedule. She's going to the pediatrician today to figure out if the pinkness in her eyes is really pink eye, or something else entirely.

Me? I continue to tend to the sick, making sure Sue has what she needs and taking care of Jordan, at least until around 11 p.m., when I have to go to sleep. Then Sue and Jordan hang out on the sofa until the little one finally dozes off. My goal is to keep them comfortable while still getting enough sleep to avoid getting sick. Oh, and to drink as much orange juice as is humanly possible...

Monday, March 21, 2005

Radio Active Traffic

I haven't gotten a lot of feedback on Nuketown Radio Active yet, but I am starting to see some traffic to the XML feed; according to my tracker, it's seen 171 accesses. That doesn't mean it has 171 listeners, just that some how, some way, it was loaded 171 times.

Of those, about 21 visits were sent our way by's "All Things Sci-Fi" index, which is certainly a good thing.

I've registered the feed with Podcast Alley (though it hasn't shown up there just yet) and I'm looking for other places to list it. If anyone has any suggestions on that front, please leave a commment or e-mail me.

Plague of Doom

Ok, not quite that bad, but Jordan's got something resembling pink eye, combined with some sort of weird head/throat/chest cold. That hit on Saturday, which sent our sleep cycle into a tailspin as she had trouble sleeping through the night.

On Sunday, the illness hit Sue hard, and hit again harder later in the day after she got done teaching a wilderness tracking program in New Jersey. By the time she got home, she was a wreck: chilled to the bone, achy all over, etc. So any and all plans yesterday were torpedoed in favor of sick duty, though thankfully (for all of us) I've been able to dodge the bug.

Sue's feeling better, at least well enough to watch Jordan today (which is important, as I have only so many vacation days available, and we're planning a big trip this summer). The big question now is how Jordan's doing; if her eye continues to get pinker, she's going to the doctor.

Getting Paranoid

My long-awaited, long-lusted for copy of Paranoia XP arrived yesterday via, and I spent a good chunk of this weekend (at least those chunks not spent taking care of Sue and Jordan) reading it and laughing manically to myself.

It's a special kind of GM paradise, where arguing about rules is forbidden and in which knowledge of certain rules is outright treasonous. It's a game that opens with the following disclaimer about genders:
Note on pronoun usage: The Computer suggests any citizen concerned about this games usage of 'he' for the generic third person pronoun, instead of 'he or she', should attend to more important matters, such as serving The Computer with fervent loyalty

It's also a kind of player paradise, because you don't even have to pretend to try and get along with your fellow Troubleshooters, and instead, are actively encouraged to scheme, betray and otherwise mess with your friends.

I can't wait to run this thing.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Center for the Study of Science Fiction

My review of The J. Wayne and Elsie M. Gunn Center for the Study of Science Fiction is up on Science Fiction Weekly.

Nuketown Radio Active #2

The 3/18 edition of the Nuketown Radio Active podcast is available for download. Full details are up on Nuketown.

I think #2 sounds a lot better than #1 did, which is to be expected given that I now have double the audio-recording experience. I'm also getting more comfortable with recording my audio, though I think I'm relying too heavily on my show notes (and the show notes themselves are overly-detailed).

In other podcast news, I was just about to add myself to the "All Things Science Fiction" cateogry over on when I discovered that I was already listed!

Many thanks to node editor Evo Terra of The Dragon Page for being so on the ball. If you haven't done so already, check out the Dragon Page Wingin' It podcast. For more of my thoughts on their show, check out my "Podcatching" column for March 2005.

Friday, March 18, 2005

How to Blog

While I'm a little past the "how to" stage, if you're interested in learning how to blog, particularly if you're stuck on which software to use, then stop by Emily Robbins's blog, How to Blog. She compares different blogging solutions, talks about add-ons you can use, and other assorted blog-related topics.

Random Podcasts

Looking to spice up your Podcast listening? Check out Podcast Shuffle, which randomly serves up new podcast every day. Pretty nifty, though I haven't tried any of the podcasts its served up yet. I found the link via Ranchero's blog, the nice folks who make NetNewsWire for Mac OS X.

Geeking Out

I got to do the bachelor thing last night, as Sue and Jordan were out at a Longaberger Basket party, so I geeked out and spent the entire evening reading comic books and watching X-Men 2.

If you'd like an indication of the sort of impacting having a kid has on my ability to geek out on a regular basis, I was reading comics that I bought in October and I got X2 for Christmas, but only just now had time to watch it.

I got caught up on the time-tripping storyline in Superman/Batman, which isn't as good as the first half-dozen or so issues that launched the series (mostly because of the constant jumping around, which interfered with rather than enhanced the story) but it was still a fun read. I also read through my X-men books; I enjoyed the "New Brotherhood" arc with Black Tom and Juggernaut, but I really, really wish they'd just kill of Xorn once and for all. I'm willing to suspend my disbelief when it comes to comic book physics, but come on, a guy with a black hole for a brain?

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Flame On!

I've been making a concerted effort to avoid flame wars online. They never seem to be worth the effort you put into them, and after a few first few posts the chances of actually convincing anyone of your opinion become vanishingly small.

That's not to say I don't enjoy reading other people's flame wars, and if you want to read out a great one, check out John Scalzi's post entitled "James Valvis at it Again" on his blog Whatever.

In it, Scalzi responds to some criticism of his first published book, Old Man's War by another, unpublished writer named James Valvis (well, unpublished in the commercial sense of the word; he's apparently got a few credits under his belt, but no big books sales).

It's a fascinating read, partly because Scalzi really is a good writer, and a damn amusing one as well. He's deft at responding to Valvis's self-righteous screeches, and the comments from the peanut gallery (particularly about Scalzi's ass-kissing prowess with publishers) do a good job of breaking up the increasingly length dialogue.

As for Valvis, well, I can't say too much about him, since this is the first I've heard of him. He does strike me as being one of the "happy-to-be-a-starving-artist" types, which as a group are people that I have very little patience for.

As for the quality of Old Man's War, well, it's on my reading list. At the pace I'm going right now, I should get to it around 2008.

Finding Serenity

While surfing around on I came across a new book called Finding Serenity : Anti-Heroes, Lost Shepherds and Space Hookers in Joss Whedon's Firefly by Benbella Books. It's a collection essays analyzing Joss Whedon's Firefly.

I'm intrigued, and I've requested a review copy of it for Nuketown, but so far there's been no word back from the publisher.

2005 Nuketown Readers Survey

I'm running a Readers Survey over at Nuketown in an attempt to figure out what people like and don't like about the site. Take the survey.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Serenity: The Role-Playing Game

GamingReport has word that Sovereign Press will be releasing the Serenity Role-Playing Game, a game based on the movie that was based on the short-lived-but-still-excellent sci-fi western Firefly by Joss Whedon.

Got all that?

According to the GamingReport, the game will focus on the movie, and ignore the series, which is something I find a little bizarre. While I have high hopes for the movie, I can't believe it has enough content to drive an RPG all by itself; I'm thinking there must be a snafu with the rights to the series preventing Sovereign from exploiting it. Either that, or they're saving the series for a supplemental source book or two.

Unfortunately, Sovereign's web site is mum on the subject. In fact, the web site has to be one of the lamest I've ever seen for a gaming company; just contact information and some links to their more robust sites for Dragonlance and Larry Elmore. Granted, it's better than nothing, but only nominally so.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

"Ready for an upgrade chummer?"

I haven't played Shadowrun since college, but I've always had a soft spot for its mix of fantasy and cyberpunk. I'm happy to see that FanPro's releasing a 4th edition in August 2005, but I can't say that new edition will return me to its digital fold. The world, as they say, has moved on.

HTML Special Characters

Scratching your head trying to find a list of special characters for HTML? Then check out this page at the now-defunct (but still online) WebMonky Web site. It's got everything from cedillas to umlauts.

Monday, March 14, 2005

Google Bar for Firefox

If you like Firefox, but are disappointed that the Google Toolbar is Internet Explorer-only, then check out the "googlebar". It's an open source toolbar for Firefox and Mozilla that seeks to emulate many of the features found in the official toolbar.

It can:
  • Restrict a search to the site you're currently on
  • Perform an "I'm Feeling Lucky" search
  • Do searches of specific Google directories (i.e. Mac and Unix)
  • Search highlighted text
  • And many more things I won't list here. Gets Sci-Fi Category

The number of science fiction podcasts continues to grow, so much so that has added a new "Science Fiction" category.

I'll be checking out three of them this week: Wizard News Podcast, Sci-Fi Talk and Requiem of the Outcast. itself just got a facelift; I'm not sure if I like the new version any better than the old. The directory has only the most basic browsing functionality, meaning you have to drill down through each section to look at the podcasts. There's no search function, which is a real liability IMHO.

Once you do drill down, the only thing you see is the name of the show--there's no description--and the hyperlink is a small globe icon next to the show's name. Why can the show's name itself be linked, with the initial front page summary listed beneath it? Those two changes, combined with search, would make the whole site a heck of a lot easier to use.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Science Fiction Blogs: Resistance is Futile!

Once upon a time, I struggled to find any science fiction blogs. Now Nuketown's "Science Fiction Blog" link index has 21 entries.

It's astounding, and what I find most impressive is that we're not just talking enthusiast blogs here; we've also got several blogs by science fiction writers (the best of which is easily John Scalzi's Whatever), two supporting scifi franchises (Serenity, which is admittedly not very current, and Battlestar Galactica, which is a strong example of how a blog can enrich and empower a TV production).

Get to the Escape Pod!

It's official: Nuketown Radio Active is now live. Check out the site or subscribe to the feed.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Nuketown Radio Active #1

The first edition of Nuketown's new podcast is now done, edited, and online. I haven't created the RSS feed for it yet, but you can download the mp3 file via this link. The show runs about 30 minutes, and is a 30 mb download; expect much fanfare on Nuketown once the feed goes live.

Topics discussed include Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash, Marvel's limited series honoring the 10th anniversary of the Age of Apocalypse, grammar and e-mail, and the upcoming release of The Incredibles DVD.

So how is the show? Well, I think it's a decent enough freshman effort. I learned that what I thought was a half-hour limit to recording in GarageBand was just a misunderstanding on my part. I also discovered that if you record new audio into a track, it will overwrite what's already there. That caused me to do a little first aid to restore lost audio, and if it sounds particularly choppy in places, that's why (well, aside from the parts where I tripped over my words and/or made a few "Kennisms").

Games & Hoaxes

I've got two new articles up on Nuketown. The first is a review of Games Quarterly, a print magazine that covers all manner of non-electronic gaming, from board games to card games to wargames.

Second, I have a debunking of the "Phenylpropanolamine Chain Letter", a scare mail that talks about a very real drug recall but (as is often the case with these things) mixes in unhealthy doses of misinformation.

Regarding hoax debunking, you can expect to see more of them on Nuketown in coming months; I'm going to be trying to get back into the debunking groove with two write-ups a month.

Comments on Comments

I've been wondering for the last few weeks why the number of comments on The Atomic Age have trinkled down to nothing. Were the posts just not grabbing people's attention? Did something I said alienate the blog's fledgling readership? Was some mysterious force preventing people from posting?

It turns out the last one was correct. Or at least, I think that's what the problem was. The "mysterious force" was Blogger, and I think when they upgraded their comments system, they fubared comments on this blog. I'd had it setup so that you had have a Blogger account in order to leave a commet. However, with this option enabled, if you tried to leave a comment you got sent to a "blog not found" error page.

If you happened to be logged in to Blogger at the time, then you could leave a comment, but if not, no dice. So I've changed the settings within Blogger, and made comments open to all. This seems to have worked--the "blog not found" error is now gone when you click on "Leave a Comment"--so hopefully this will let folks around here get back to talking.

"First Heat"

Bryan Larsen has crafted yet another beautiful painting, the original of which I can't possible afford: "First Heat".

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Quote: "Free Will"

"You can choose from phantom fears, And kindness that can kill"
"I will choose a path that’s clear, I will choose free will"
-- Rush, "Free Will", Permanent Waves

Meanwhile, in France

The teeming masses rise up to vehemently proclaim "Let us eat cake!"

Radio Ga Ga

The raw audio for the first edition of Nuketown Radio Active is done. I recorded it in Garageband, which worked fine except for crapping out when it hit the 30 minute mark (a drawback I only remembered after I'd crashed into it. I lost a portion of the last segment, which had talked about the impending release of The Incredibles on DVD. I think I'm going to cut that entire segment, record another, briefer end segment, and then post that puppy to Nuketown so I can get the RSS 2.0 feed up and running.

With this one done, I'm starting to think more about what the format of the show should be. I'm leaning towards a brief 5-minute introduction, followed by a short 10-minute or so round-up of scifi/tech news. That'll be followed by two or three genre-related reviews.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

The Dictionary of the Matrix

My review of The Dictionary of the Matrix, a wiki that attempts to define all the major characters, places, equipment and plots in The Matrix movies is online at Science Fiction Weekly.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Hell Froze Over

Or at least the parts that touched New Jersey did. A fast-moving front arrived in the Garden State earlier than anyone had predicted, causing temperatures to plummet from the 40s into the teens. Starting around 11 a.m., the front's lead edge was producing a fine coating of rain, which promtly froze as temperatures fell. The rain turned to a powdery but intense snow that--when combined with wind--played havoc with visibility.

The end result? So many accidents that the radio stations gave up naming them, and simply wrote off entire highways as a frozen morasses that no one was getting out of. My day job let me out at 2:30, but by that point things were helplessly fubar'd. It took me just over four hours to get home, which is slightly less than my longest commute ever (4.5 hours on Halloween a few years ago).

Of course, all that I wasted was time, and when you look at the big picture--which included so many accidents that there weren't enough state troopers avialable to respond to all of them--that's not a big deal.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Radio Active Update

My digital audio experiments continue. Over the weekend I picked up a new microphone, the Logitech Stereo USB Headset 200, and after an initial tests, it looks like this was exactly what I wanted.

Sound levels of a file recorded to my iBook using the new headset and Audicity were loud, clear and devoid of any of the annoying background sounds (like the computer fan) that ruined last week's attempts. The only caveat I can offer about purchasing this headset is that it's difficult to find--many places are out of stock (including Amazon) and that makes me think that Logitech is getting ready to rev the line. Fortunately, I was able to pick one up at Staples.

My next quest, once I get this mic thing figured out, is to determine the best way of mixing in audio clips. Based on my research, it looks like Rogue Amoeba's Audio Hijack Pro is the way to go.

Getting Paranoid

I'm planning on making Mongoose Publishing's new Paranoia XP game the focus of an upcoming "Summon WebScryer" column in Knights of the Dinner Table.

I've got a few good sites lined up--including the Paranoia XP Blog, Paranoia Live, The Toothpaste Disaster and the Mission Blender--but I need more. If anyone has any suggestions, please leave a comment.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Cold Steel Pain

I finally got around to paging through Dungeon #121 today, and came across and for an interesting-sounding game: Cold Steel Reign by Mad Hermit Games. In it, a comet strikes the Earth around the time of the American War, plunging the world into a chaos that it takes 200 years to emerge from.

Sounds cool eh? So I decided to look it up on the Web and surprisingly, Mad Hermit Games doesn't have a site, not for the company, not for the game. This mystifies me -- what sort of company, in today's world, would have a product release without having a web site to support it? Heck, even a free blog on Blogger would be better than nothing, which is what they appear to have.

If anyone's heard of the game, or knows of a Web site for it or the company, please let me know.

Two Art Shows in Easton

The Elucidator is a free arts and lifestyle magazine published quarterly in Easton, Pa. Actually, "arts and lifestyle" is far too generic a term for this 'zine, which has a wonderfully eccentric, slightly liberal sensibility that mixes articles on the best (and worst) places to drink with features on bellydancing and bow hunting. That's right ... bow hunting.

It's usually crammed with ads as well, and two that caught my eye this month were for art exhibits in Easton. The first is "Night Shift: Elucidator Photographers Stay Up Late" at Project Blue at 134 N. Second Street, Easton, PA. It features classy, thoughtful black & white photos taken by The Ecludiator's photo staff. The show opens March 18 and runs through April 24; hours are 4-7 p.m., Saturdays 12-4 p.m., and First Sunday 12-5 p.m. (first Sunday being a monthly event in Easton in which many businesses in Easton open their doors for special events). You can contact the gallery at (unfortunately, they don't have a web site).

The other show that caught my eye was "Poetry in Motion" by Charles Klabunde, which is being held at "The Gallery and Studio of Charles Klabunde". His fine figure drawings, rendered in pencil, remind me of some of the work I've seen on Quent Cordiar's web site, and I'm always a sucker for well-drawn, Romantically-realistic portraits.

The gallery is located at 73 N. 2nd Street and the show runs April 30 through June 30. For more information, check out it's web site at

Saturday, March 05, 2005


I've done a little pre-spring cleaning around The Atomic Age. I've added in a bunch of blogroll/web links (which you can check out in the right hand column), Google Ads (which I also added to Nuketown), and a few graphic links to sites I spend a lot of time at.


Friday, March 04, 2005

Quote: "Fear is the Mindkiller"

"I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear... And when it is gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear is gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain." -- The Bene Gesserit Littainy against Fear, Dune

Nuketown Radio Active

My call for possible names for a Nuketown podcast yielded one very excellent result from Nathan Lilly, my cohort at and a long-time friend from college. In hindsight, it's a blatantly obvious one: Nuketown Radio Active.

I like it because it plays on Nuketown's thermonuclear name (thus keeping up the tradition of this The Atomic Age blog and the burg's long-running Radiations newsletter, while at the same time incorporating the word "radio" into it.

As for the potential podcast itself ... I'm working on it. The generic line-in microphone I got from Radio Shack didn't work well; the audio levels were terribly low, even after I mucked around with the recording volume. Borrowing a page from, I'm looking at trying to record something with my iBook next.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

The Temple of Elemental Art

Last night was one of those nights where I have so many dreams that it feels like I didn't sleep at all. All of the dreams were connected in some bizarre way, and -- as is the nature of dreams -- those connections are already fading. One part of the dream that stands out is going on a dungeoncrawl with my friends to slay the ancient evil of the Temple of Elemental Evil, a notorious dungeon in the World of Greyhawk setting.

Despite playing Dungeons & Dragons regularly, I don't actually dream about it very often, and even this wasn't straight D&D -- it had more of a The Mummy feel to it as my friends and I fought various horrors in the depths of the temple, finally vanquishing its lead demon, and then returning to the surface.

What was weird wasn't the temple, but rather, the fact that it was in the basement of the Arts Center at the university where I work. Indeed, the first sublevel was populated by prison cells, monster lairs, and offices for the music and art faculty.

Yep, definitely gotta stop drinking milk before I got to bed.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

The Incredibles Arrive March 15

The Ides of March brings Pixar's The Incredibles to DVD, and I can't wait. The film worked on many different levels: as a superhero action flick, as a family comedy, and even as a philosophical tract on why the exceptional -- and not the mediocre -- should be our society's ideal.