Thursday, 29 December 2016

Infinite Diversity, Finite Combinations 5.1.3

It's the last IDFC of the year. Shame it couldn't have been a more interesting episode, really. This is classic Voyager being Voyager, which is to say not really anything interesting at all.

Friday, 23 December 2016

Friday Talisman: REPENT!

My latest miniature for Fantasy Flight's ever-more unwieldy Talisman is finally done. 

This guy is the Harbinger from the eponymous expansion, and actually I think that's the last add-on I'll be getting (depending on what Santa provides me with in 48 hours, of course). Now the game has seen fit to literally replace the original board, there's a Theseus' Ship/Sugababes vibe to the whole thing that leaves me cold.  Best to finish here, I think - I still have about 40 miniatures still to paint, after all, and that doesn't include the toads.

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Infinite Diversity, Finite Combinations 4.1.3

Since most of us will have some spare time this week, here's 5000 or so words on Deep Space Nine to keep you busy. Happy holidays!

Thursday, 8 December 2016

Infinite Diversity, Finite Combinations 2.1.3

This week I take a look at "One Of Our Planets Is Missing", which is silly and slight, but has some pretty good moments.

Saturday, 3 December 2016

No Apologies for the Infinite Radness 1.1.18 - "My Sundown" (Jimmy Eat World)

A song about calling time and moving on.

My copy of this album isn't called "Bleed American", because I didn't buy it until 2002. By then it had been renamed - de-named, really - in the wake of September 11th. I got the album as my final term as an undergraduate began. I listened to it multiple times a day in between studying for the last exams I would ever take, staring out into a world that had become unrecognisable. Changes dripped from the walls and covered the skin, and every change felt like an ending.

Leaving university felt profoundly strange. For most of us it was the first community we had any meaningful choice about living in. I loved my school friends with the kind of fierceness only the young and ignorant can manage - these days it's uncommon for me to so much as nod at them on Facebook - but surviving the local comprehensive together felt less like forming a network of the like-minded and more like survivors of a shipwreck banding together to avoid being eaten by bears. Maybe it was just because of how many of us were forced to read Lord of the Flies at the time.

University was different. This was a place we'd chosen. The social structures we formed over the years we were there we built because we wanted to be there, and wanted being there to mean as much as it could. 

And now it was about to end, just as the world had finally revealed its chaos so completely that even a sheltered middle-class white boy couldn't fail to notice it any more.

"My Sundown" lives in the intersection of two realisations: that it's time to move on, but that there's no way of knowing what you're moving on to. The narrator says goodbye at sundown, and that means they're travelling by night. Departure imminent, destination unknown. All that matters is that things can't stay as they are. 

Everything here is shot through with bittersweetness. You don't choose sundown as your metaphor if you're overjoyed about what's coming next, after all. But it's also clear that unsolvable problems have been revealed by he light of day. Nobody seems to care about whatever progress you're making here. You can't really move on unless you're leaving something behind.

There's an ethereal, calming quality to the song, too. The slow strum, the soft, airy vocals, the constant flow of synthesised noise bubbling underneath everything. This is a dream of how a pop-rock album should end. It's a lullaby you sing to yourself. The need to become more than what you are eventually bleeds out into your sleep.

It was the summer of 2002, and every day saw me further into the dusk. I was about to leave almost everything I knew behind, and travel out into a world that I had never found so scary. Sundown was coming any minute.

I dreamed of becoming something more.

No Apologies for the Infinite Radness 1.1: Sad Bastard Music

Here's your b-side. Something nice for us to make our way out to.

Friday, 2 December 2016

Friday Dreadfleet: The Swordfysh

It's been a long time since I've shown you anything from my paint bench, I realise. The reason behind this will probably shock no-one who follows the blog or knows me in the meatsphere - turns out nothing curtails your painting time so much as a cat who loves to drink paint water, throw brushes to the ground, and gnaw on small plastic objects. It's also a pretty drawn out process for me to get through a Dreadfleet ship at the best of times. This is only the third I've completed since I got the game five years ago, and if I remember rightly I first base-coated the Swordfysh back in 2014.

Still, she's done now, and I'm rather fond of her.

Below is the whole of my painting efforts for the game to date, minus the Curse of Zandri that hasn't got past me spraying it black and painting its base.

Thursday, 1 December 2016

Infinite Diversity, Finite Combinations 1.1.3

Back to the Original Series, and the very first episode William Shatner shot. Rather better on gender issues than its reputation suggests, but you'll have to click the link to find out why.