The Caffeinated Penguin

musings of a crackpot hacker

It's been a busy couple of weeks

| November 25, 2006

Hey folks! I'm not dead, just busy.

So, two weekends ago (11/11 – 11/12), I was in Vermont at Carnage Con. I played some Axis and Allies Miniatures (quick to learn, fast and fun play, good for kids), Modern Spearhead (very complex and order oriented, but was a fun game), Munchkin (always a crowd pleaser) and I entered a Warhammer 40K tournament (I didn't place, but was fun).

Last weekend (11/18-11/19) I was in upstate NY. Liz got a deer opening day, and then Sunday we went to look at a house. The house was interesting – it was on Lepper Road (not the most attractive name), and was a little.. special. It was on 15 wonderful acres (once one carts out the 3 dumpsters full of debris), but the house as an unfinished Chalet style A-Frame. The floorplan was just inefficient and horrible, so even once we fixed it up, it would still have a bad floorplan.

Anyway, I spent part of last week butchering the deer, and pretty much the rest of it researching house stuff. We're leaning towards bulding, and are partial to this Victorian plan. Yes, it's modular, which in theory should save us money. We're also looking at a geothermal heating system, with the idea being that it would pay for itself over the life of the house. (For the curious, geothermal heat uses coils buried far enough into the ground that they stay warmer than the air in winter and cooler in summer. Then it just pumps the heat in for the winter and out in the summer. Think an air conditioner or refrigerator, except that it does heat exchange into the ground into the air, it runs backwards in winter. The idea is that you can heat and cool your house for less than the cost of your central air would be in the summer. It's the same technology, but the ground heat exchange is more efficient). This house also features fireplaces (which will be natural gas) and a large kitchen.

I should note that we're not certain that we'll build – if we can find a house that's built and we like, we'd just buy that instead.

In other news:

  • We got the christmas tree today, and it's already been decorated. We're putting up the rest of the decorations.

  • I've come up with a pretty decent rich chocolate orange ice cream recipe.

  • In an interesting synergy, Liz came up with the idea of a frozen Tiramisu, which we are currently attempting. The idea is that I'm freezing the cake (I use pound cake) and churning a rich coffee-based ice cream with marscapone substituted for heavy cream. Once the ice cream is churned (but still soft), I will assemble the layers of pound cake. Then, back in the freezer overnight to firm up, We'll see how it goes.

  • I'm on this “modern warfare” kick. Originally, I was looking at 20mm (1:72 scale), but the guys who were making them wend out of business. So, now I'm thinking about doing 6mm (1:285 scale, aka Micro Armor). Friends of mine have several sets of rules, and I've got some ideas in my head about how to make a simple, fast-playing armor game if the rules don't work out. Ideally, I'll find some rules that I like which just need some more unit stats (which suits my organizational streak). Even more perfect would be if these rules were some unpublished set written by my friends, which they allow me to publish free to the net as long as I give them credit. Anyway, these are the miniatures in question, and they also make boxed sets. To give you an idea, most of the tanks are less than an inch long.

Anyway, I think that's it for tonight. Night folks.

Waco and crazy people

| November 2, 2006

Okay, so I watched the documentary about Waco I talked about here. I posted about it in the community as well, which led to a discussion about the FLDS (Fundamentalist Mormon splinter group), where I found myself defending them on the grounds of freedom.

Link to guns discussion

(pay attention to the long-running thread by )

And, he cross posted to his personal LJ, so I can get heckled

Notable quotes are:

“I've always thought that dude was creepy and annoying.”

and

“that dude's a fucking tool.”

As quoted in SmallestMinority, “Liberty is an inherently offensive lifestyle”

Living in a free society guarantees that each one of us will see our most cherished principles and beliefs questioned and in some cases mocked. That psychic discomfort is the price we pay for basic civic peace. It’s worth it. It’s a pragmatic principle. Defend everyone else’s rights, because if you don’t there is no one to defend yours. – MaxedOutMama