johncoxon: ([Me] Renovation)

Hello LiveJournal! Writing this on Monday morning at work, because I was too tired last night.

Monday and Tuesday were roleplay, as per usual: Pathfinder and Star Wars, respectively. It felt like we got through more roleplay on the Monday than we have been doing recently, although I don’t know whether that’s just my perception or not. I helped the GM solve a technical problem after we’d played, regarding the upcoming redesign of Physics for Idiots, a website that he and a couple of friends of ours constructed back in the day. It’s an exciting project, and I’m looking forward to seeing Physics for Idiots reborn in all its glory! Star Wars was fun, I’m still enjoying GMing and I’m having a blast coming up with ways to have the players’ explorations land them on the main plot by hook or by crook. I like the feeling that they can go and poke around and still wind up uncovering stuff that’s relevant, but it requires a lot of reworking and improvisation as a game progresses. It’s a rather terrifying experience, actually.

Wednesday was a bit weird for two reasons: firstly, it was the graduation ceremony for the College of Science and Engineering, so I was tasked with selling the Journal of Physics Special Topics to the graduates. It’s a compilation of some of the miniature papers that they write over the course of a year, and so they tend to get bought so that people can sign them, etc. I produce the book for the department each year, and each year I have to work out all the problems from scratch because I take terrible notes. Next year, I’ll be at my new post in Southampton and so I won’t be able to do it; as such, this year I took pretty good notes. I must blog them, really. In the evening of Wednesday, [livejournal.com profile] cmdrsuzdal and I went to Café Research, a monthly meeting of postgraduates to discuss postgraduate research throughout the University of Leicester. This month saw the launch of Frontier, a new magazine that also focuses on postgraduate research – I was the director of design for the inaugural issue, so I attended to see that happen. I have a couple of copies for my parents, etc., and it’s quite cool to see my designs in a semi-professional magazine!

I know we watched The 40-Year-Old Virgin at some stage this week and I think it was Wednesday night. I enjoyed it, it was silly and fun. We also started watching Orphan Black at some stage, which I am enjoying. And we really need to finish the series of Rick and Morty, which should really be getting a Hugo Award this time next year.

Thursday and Friday were much the same at work, but both involved barbecues afterwards. The Thursday saw a couple of my colleagues throw a barbecue leading into watching The Secret Life of Students, because the latest episode had my supervisor in it. España and I left before the communal watching so that we could watch it in bed, but it was fun to see the department and academics I know featured on the show. I’ve actually been rather enjoying the show generally, so it’s nice to keep up with it on the day it airs (especially given that it tends to get discussed at work). Friday, [livejournal.com profile] himedark decided to throw a barbecue, which was great fun. It was nice to hang out with Lianne, Liz, Hamish and Ian, and have España spend a bit more time with them. We ate way too much meat, which was also very fun!

Saturday, I went to the gym really early before España was properly awake, and we headed to Mrs Bridges Tearooms when she had gotten up so that we could get a spot of breakfast. I got some pork shoulder diced on the market for an experiment, and then we headed home to clean the flat. That evening was Chris’ birthday dinner at Buddies USA, so we got a lift with Liz and Hamish and met up with Alex, Lianne, Shannon, Andrew, Chris, Ash and Nicola at the restaurant. It was fun: España had a burger that came in two waffles instead of in a bun, with maple syrup. I had the Chewbacka, which is just bacon, cheese and mushrooms – also yummy. After the meal I headed back to Chris and Andrew’s to drink some prosecco, and then headed home to collapse into bed because knackered.

Sunday was a day on which my parents visited at 09:30 to drop some stuff off, so we got up stupid early. I made a banoffee pie and hung out with Chris, Andrew, Alex, and Lianne to play Eldritch Horror, which is jolly good fun. It’s similar to Arkham Horror in terms of the need to close gates and defeat monsters, but the actual lower-level mechanics are different enough that I think it’s worth playing both. I had a great time.

Finally on Sunday, I went to see Monty Python with my friend Josh. It was really great fun, but the introduction of a few new jokes in places didn’t work very well. Honestly the best bits were when they were corpsing or forgetting their lines on stage. John Cleese, particularly, seemed to be having difficulty with lines and whatnot. I was pleased to see Graham Chapman appear on the monitor quite prominently. All in all, a good evening (and about 3.5 hours long at the cinema, which was worth the money!).

Until next time, LiveJournalers!

johncoxon: (Default)
The last time I updated this thing properly was Christmas. That's possibly a bit of a long time, since then it's just been 15 or so entries on not a lot, so I'm going to give you guys an update here.

I went to several comedy shows during the Leicester Comedy Festival - Jim Smallman, Tim Minchin, Ed Aczel, Ed Byrne. Minchin did his new show, which I believe is touring Australia at the moment before coming back to the UK later this year - see it if you can, it's got some really good songs in it (as anyone who saw my Twitter during the concert will already know!). Ed Byrne's set was also really, really good - it's coming back to Leicester later this year, so I assume it's still touring elsewhere in the UK. I recommend seeing it if you can, I really enjoyed it. Ed Aczel was weird (as I was expecting), and two or three people walked out of his show, but I was laughing so that was fine. And Jim Smallman is a comedian I've seen a few times, but his set was as funny as always.

Tonight was the Geek Quiz. I've just received a text telling me that my team didn't actually win (it went to tiebreak, but apparently an answer has been discovered to be inaccurate since the end of the evening so my team lost by two points), but it was a good evening. And we won the competition to get most kicker questions (really hard questions at the end of every round designed to sort the men from the boys).

What else has happened? Not a whole lot. Had a friend from home visit recently, and shortly afterwards I also went home - saw all my brothers which was awesome, and celebrated my grandparents' wedding anniversary. I've been doing uni as usual, and it's been going averagely. I'm now social secretary of the Game Society, and I was elected president on Monday, so I'll be president next year. We're having a twenty-four hour board gaming social in a fortnight's time which ought to be epic.

On the subject of Gamesoc, I've been playing more Warhammer 40,000 - I'm getting better, slowly but surely. I beat my friend Ash the other day, and I've won one lost two in the doubles tournament that's running (I confidently anticipate placing in the middle somewhere). We also played a 6000pts/side game of Imperial Guard vs Necrons, which was good fun. We Necrons won, but by the skin of our teeth!

I'm also now on the committee for LL3, which is absolutely definitely probably happening in summer 2010. Unfortunately, someone decided that during exams was the best time to hold a convention, so I can't go to Plokta, which is annoying. I also couldn't have gone to Redemption, even if I'd remembered it was happening, due to family commitments. I should be at Constitution this summer though, so I'll see some of you there. I'm also (obviously) still going to be at LX and Odyssey 2010.

Can't think of much else happening in my life. Didn't win the lottery tonight, that was a shame! I am now going to shower, buy peanut butter from the twenty-four hour Spar down the road, and hit the hay, as I'm up at something ridiculous like 07:00 tomorrow morning for Picocon. I plan to read Watchmen for the first time on the train, in anticipation of the film on Friday. See some of you there!
johncoxon: (Default)
I am currently in Hall i' th' Wood, where [livejournal.com profile] supermouse and [livejournal.com profile] da_pol are looking after me. Mouse just cooked venison sausages, wild boar sausages and pork & black pudding sausages. It was very good. :D We are currently playing Zombies!!! and Mouse has now got a Wii with Zelda and Wii Fit.

Yesterday was good. Mouse met me off the train and took me for yummy fried breakfast (involving beans and tomatoes and black pudding and nom nom nom) before we went to the butcher/greengrocer and bought various bits and bobs for eating. Eventually we moved into Manchester, accompanied by Pol, and went to the Arndale Centre to go to the Apple Store so that I could use the new MacBook and MacBook Pro. Forgot to use the new iPod Nano, but c'est la vie.

After that we went to CEX where a Wii was obtained and Pol left me and Mouse to explore Manchester on our own. We went on a big Ferris Wheel thing before eating at a gorgeous Asian restaurant near the Cathedral called Tampopo, which also has branches in Leeds, London and Bristol. It was very nice! We then went to see a film called Eagle Eye at the IMAX at the Odeon, which was a very good film in Large-O-Vision. I <3 Shia LaBeouf. (Also it is one of the best films I've seen in a while when it comes to strong female characters - there are two Federal agents, and one is male, the other female. There are two fugitives - one is male, the other female. There are two strong players in the US military - one is male, the other female. However, most of the background cast are male and the film still fails the Bechdel test - Mouse and I had a long discussion about this last night. Way better than Dark Knight in terms of patriarchy, though!)

Zombies!!! just finished and I'm off to play Castle Wars. TTFN, chaps!
johncoxon: (Default)
This weekend I played a WWII boardgame, in which Russia and Germany didn't declare war on one another until 1946. It was actually really interesting, how things panned out - French troops pretty much managed to completely conquer Africa as the Nazis began to divert all their resources to building the Luftwaffe and AA guns in France and Germany in response to bombing from the RAF. The lack of attention from Nazi Germany meant that Britain began a land offensive in south Asia in response to Japan's conquest of China, supported by American troops and bombers, which resulted in the very slow pushing back of Japanese troops. The Germans eventually built enough U-boats to begin to threaten Britain's income, but for some reason they stopped building U-boats and started building transports, which were bombed by the RAF before they could be used... in one turn, six U-boats were destroyed, allowing Britain to vastly strengthen the forces in south Asia. France built a shipyard in the East Indies, and started to send submarines to worry the fleet stationed just off the Japanese coast.

If Russia hadn't invaded Korea and Poland in 1946 and carried on being neutral, we think that the USA and Britain would eventually have reclaimed China in the early 1950s and invaded Japan in 1955 before diverting their attention to Nazi Germany. The war would probably have ended with the conquest in Berlin in 1965, a full 26 years after the beginning in 1939. As it was, the invasion of Japanese and German territories by Mother Russia resulted in the Axis powers' surrender to the allies in mid-1946.

It just goes to show how different things could have been if Russia hadn't been attacked by Germany in the early 1940s!

Fluxx

Aug. 30th, 2008 12:30 pm
johncoxon: (Default)
I have a Family Fluxx (still sealed) and an Eco Fluxx (good condish) up for grabs (since I have regular Fluxx and will be getting Zombie Fluxx, they're really extra to requirement). Takers?
johncoxon: (Default)
Do any gamers reading this know of good gaming shops in Nottingham, Mansfield or similar? I am going to visit a friend next week and we'd quite like to visit one to look at RPGs. I already know about Forbidden Planet, btw.
johncoxon: (Default)
I've just found a board game called War On Terror (website here). It looks like a really interesting board game, and I'm going to try to buy one when I'm next near one of the shops that stocks it. Several stockists have turned around to these guys and told them that it's too politically sensitive to put in stores, so my purchase will (I hope) help to hold two fingers up to censorship and idiocy.

EDIT: There are a lot of left-wing bookstores in London stocking the game, but I'd prefer to get it from a game store, because left-wing bookstores will stock left-wing games no matter what I do, but game stores might not stock left-wing games if I buy games from bookstores. This makes a lot of sense in my head.
johncoxon: (Default)
"Come to my house," I said. "We could play some board games," I said. It began at seven, with Andy [livejournal.com profile] volcanomaker and me, and Mark came at around eight or half past. Liam [livejournal.com profile] derbyboy88 made an appearance at eleven, and we're about to hit the sack. One hell of a games night that's branched out into Spaced, pizza and other stuff and was mostly concerned with playing three games of On The Underground, which rocks (just so you all know).

I love my friends.

Fluxx

Aug. 27th, 2006 06:32 pm
johncoxon: (South Park Jayne)
I want to know what my flist thinks of the news that Looney Labs are bringing out Jewish and Christian themed versions of Fluxx, so without any further ado:

[Poll #807998]

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