January 30, 2006

Challenger

The blogger known as Dr. Sanity was the flight surgeon for the final Challenger mission [and yes, I have met her professionally and is who she says she is]. She has writen some on the accident.

It's interesting, because through my college connections I have a slightly different view of things, at least now. Denial may have been a problem with Challenger, but now every astronaut at least knows that the flight could end in their death. I can't say for certain about their families, but I suspect the same.

Some other thoughts: (1)apparently, doing engineering time-to-failure kinds of studies, you can expect a catastrophic failure of the space shuttle one out of every thirty launches. (2) NASA is a huge bureaucratic nightmare. It is possible to build a safer launch vehicle, with the ability to scrub the mission even after the rockets have fired, using today's tech. But we'll keep doing shuttle launches, when the shuttle is essentially designed to do a bunch of different things, none of them well.

If someone wants proof, I know the consultants to hire.


Via Dean's World.

Posted by Owlish at 10:13 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Blizzard Bans GLBT WOW Guild

Via The Consumerist, Blizzard sent a warning to someone starting a GLBT friendly guild, saying such was against their "Terms of Use." No clue why now, as I know there have been GLBT friendly guilds in the past.

Not cool.

Posted by Owlish at 09:13 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 28, 2006

Exalted, The Intro

Last night I played a role playing game, Exalted. First time in over 20 years. The group's got some potential, but if you think gay men have issues, gamers take that to the next level.

The episode itself was so freakin' open ended that we got very little done, the only combat over ~6 hours was a 2 round sparring match, and we spent at least 30 minutes figuring out what the characters were going to eat for lunch. Not to mention, the anachronistic kinds of things- do the restaurants have the technology to serve iced tea? Much less a peanut butter and butter baked potato? Most of the players had been playing Exalted, weekly, for the last 2 years, and obviously have a mental picture of this world. Somewhat difficult to enter in the middle of.

The Storyguide [Dungeon Master, whatever] likes briefly acting out scenes, and is able to talk at length, while providing some information. There are a couple of other people who seem to be pushing the story along, one person who was bored and kept getting into trouble, and some other, more passive-seeming players. Why in the world, if he's got 8 players attending semi-regularly, the storyguide decided he needed new players I'm not quite sure.

It's also kind of interesting- I think D&D's levels provide a certain amount of structure. Basically, in the game, at this point deathlords are taking over most of the world, and the characters have no idea how to stop it. With levels you could say "Ok, you guys are 3rd level, they are 20th, you don't stand a chance in a direct attack. So you need to go to the Castle of Unmentionable Terror to get the Doohicky of Plot Significance, to defeat their Wicked Plan." But with the Storyteller system, the group could probably kill one of the most powerful guys, except for the fact they're in the middle of an army. So you get some players wanting to go for the magical widget, some wanting to fight, and some wanting to just sail away. We'll see.

Posted by Owlish at 10:25 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 27, 2006

Sci-Fi Crew

Via Serenity and The Galactica:

You scored as Moya (Farscape). You are surrounded by muppets. But that is okay because they are your friends and have shown many times that they can be trusted. Now if only you could stop being bothered about wormholes.

Moya (Farscape)

100%

Serenity (Firefly)

94%

Deep Space Nine (Star Trek)

94%

Babylon 5 (Babylon 5)

81%

Millennium Falcon (Star Wars)

75%

SG-1 (Stargate)

75%

Nebuchadnezzar (The Matrix)

69%

Galactica (Battlestar: Galactica)

69%

Enterprise D (Star Trek)

50%

Andromeda Ascendant (Andromeda)

50%

Bebop (Cowboy Bebop)

44%

FBI's X-Files Division (The X-Files)

38%

Your Ultimate Sci-Fi Profile II: which sci-fi crew would you best fit in? (pics)
created with QuizFarm.com
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Gamer Widow Syndrome

A video of Australian group Tripod, singing at a comedy festival.

Website for the group here.

Not that there's anyone out there playing Halo2 or Age of Mythology.

Hat tip: JE

Posted by Owlish at 02:24 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 26, 2006

Now I Understand Abercrombie and Fitch

After reading this Salon article. Basically, it's aimed at horny college age males, going for the "it took forever but looks like it was just thrown together" look. And the CEO is, well, different.

Via: towleroad.

Posted by Owlish at 06:17 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Sports Car Quiz

I'm a Mazda Miata!



You like to soak up the sun, but your tastes are down to earth. Everyone thinks you're cute. Life is a winding road, and you like to take the curves in stride. Let other people compete in the rat race - you're just here to enjoy the ride.


Take the Which Sports Car Are You? quiz.


Posted by Owlish at 03:58 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

January 24, 2006

Sushi Attempt

Made sushi [ok, tried to make sushi] for dinner. Made 2 rolls, with the oh so exciting fake crab legs and cream cheese. The rice, nori, and wasabi actually turned out pretty well. The actual appearance of the rolls wasn't so hot, but got better when I used plastic wrap to make a tighter roll.

Worth trying again, maybe with sushi grade fish from central market.

Posted by Owlish at 08:17 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

The Ultimate Showdown for Ultimate Destiny

Looking for flash animation involving a zombie Abe Lincoln, Godzilla vs Ultima Prime, and Chuck Norris vs Indiana Jones? You've come to the right place.

Involves cartoon blood, if that's a problem.

Via Lies and Statistics.

Posted by Owlish at 07:55 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 23, 2006

Brokeback Mountain

Yep, I suspect I'm the only gay blogger in the universe that hasn't commented yet on Brokeback Mountain. But I haven't seen it yet, and ain't got much to say.

So...

There's a video about the Brokeback Happy Meal on Queerclick, from Fries on the Side [link currently exceeded its bandwidth]. The video itself is more or less safe for work except one line ["Tastes like cum!"] [which may be the greatest line in the video], but Queerclick itself is not.

Posted by Owlish at 07:23 PM | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Looking for Quotes?

Need to sound wise or profound? A large list of quotes is here.

My Exalted scholar is going to drop kick a couple of Confucius quotes into play. I'll show those monks why they are afraid of my long-lost great-grandfather.

Be not ashamed of mistakes and thus make them crimes.
I hear and I forget. I see and I remember. I do and I understand.
What the superior man seeks is in himself; what the small man seeks is in others.
Fine words and an insinuating appearance are seldom associated with true virtue.
Learning without thought is labor lost; thought without learning is perilous.
The people may be made to follow a path of action, but they may not be made to understand it.
There are three things which the superior man guards against. In youth...lust. When he is strong...quarrelsomeness. When he is old...covetousness.

All attributed to Confucius. Note that some may contradict libertarian ideals; the character is part of a feudal/ totalitarian society- I don't think the path of enlightenment will go directly to anarchy.

Other fun statements that sound wise:

To be conscious that you are ignorant is a great step to knowledge.
If knowledge can create problems, it is not through ignorance that we can solve them.
Knowledge and timber shouldn't be much used till they are seasoned.
Learning is not compulsory... neither is survival.
Anger at lies lasts forever. Anger at truth can't last.


There's also this page, which attempts to explain all of Eastern ethics. Sort of.

Interesting thought [which is undoubtedly simplified]: the Chinese interpreted the Mandate of Heaven as contingent on the superior's actions - an order to do something wrong should be refused, could lead to the person's death, but such people were celebrated as martyrs. In India and Japan the Mandate was absolute- one should always follow a superior's orders.

There is also Zen and the Art of Divebombing, which discusses the "aestheticization of brutal violence," which possibly has happened in the world of the Dragon-Blooded, whether consciously or unconsciously on the part of the game designers. How and whether to work this into a theme of a story, I dunno.

Posted by Owlish at 06:43 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 22, 2006

Exalted Role Playing Game

It's been an odd week. I got an email from a guy at the beginning of the week, saying he was looking for players for an Exalted game, and wondering if I was interested. We exchanged some information, he gave me a wrong phone number, and I was emotionally sure I had screwed up somewhere. The next day he contacted me again, apologized, and we met yesterday to talk and make a character.

It went reasonably well. The guy is the GM, and has fully bought into White Wolf's concept of roleplaying as telling a story. Which is probably better for me than "roll-playing," but since I don't really know the game system, it's going to be interesting.

I told them I was a psychiatrist, when the matter of professions came up. I didn't tell them I was gay- no obvious opportunity, and I think I want to build up a little trust before getting too personal. The GM is married, and appreciative of hot women. The players group apparently includes two women, one his wife, which is more than I would normally expect.

If anyone cares, all the characters are Dragon-Blooded, which seems kind of like playing a bunch of Technomancers in Mage- in other games, you would probably be the confused, deluded, but well intentioned opposition. I ended up with a Air blooded jack of all trades able to do sorcery.

Which, for WW games, seems like a bad idea. It makes more sense to me to have a group of characters, each one able to do something extremely well. But, that wasn't what the guy recommended, so who am I to argue. Hopefully the majority of the game isn't combat, since if it is, I'm screwed.

Perhaps related, weird dreams last night. I was a superhero trying to get everyone to leave a mining camp, which was going to blow up. Looking through binoculars, I saw a herd of deer, with flames for antlers. I was in a jeep, and couldn't get the CB to work. I was inside a room, and a bunch of bikers were trying to break in to kill me, so I killed some and the rest ran away.

Very little clue what any of it means, if it has any meaning at all.

Posted by Owlish at 06:27 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Superhero Quiz

Via the oh so super Gaypatriot:

Your results:
You are Iron Man

Iron Man
75%
Green Lantern
70%
Spider-Man
65%
Catwoman
60%
Superman
50%
Robin
47%
Supergirl
40%
Batman
40%
Hulk
40%
The Flash
35%
Wonder Woman
30%
Inventor. Businessman. Genius.
Click here to take the "Which Superhero am I?" quiz...

Posted by Owlish at 05:45 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 19, 2006

Indigo Children

And in a story too odd for the Weekly World News, people believe that children with indigo colored auras are being born to usher in a new era of peace and environmental awareness.

H/T: Fark.

Posted by Owlish at 08:53 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 17, 2006

Odd Musical Instruments

A listing of some very unusual musical instruments, with some sound samples, including an aeolian wind harp, an E-Sitar, and a harpsicord made out of LEGOs. Cool stuff.

H/T: JE

Posted by Owlish at 01:28 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Pick a Major

Via the linguistically-inclined TexasBestGrok:

You scored as Mathematics. You should be a Math major! Like Pythagoras, you are analytical, rational, and when are always ready to tackle the problem head-on!

Philosophy

100%

Mathematics

100%

Psychology

92%

Engineering

83%

Biology

75%

Journalism

75%

Chemistry

58%

Theater

58%

English

50%

Anthropology

42%

Art

42%

Dance

33%

Sociology

33%

Linguistics

25%

What is your Perfect Major? (PLEASE RATE ME!!<3)
created with QuizFarm.com

Pretty close to inclinations. Unfortunately, perfect major doesn't correspond with perfect career.

Posted by Owlish at 07:22 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 16, 2006

The Gay Agenda

From Bilious Young Fogey, a glance at my day calender for tomorrow (Busy, Busy, Busy!) :

The Gay Agenda

6:00 am Gym
8:00 am Breakfast (oatmeal and egg whites)
9:00 am Hair appointment
10:00 am Shopping
12:00 PM Brunch

2:00 PM
1) Assume complete control of the U.S. Federal, State and Local Governments as well as all other national governments,
2) Recruit all straight youngsters to our debauched lifestyle,
3) Destroy all healthy heterosexual marriages,
4) Replace all school counselors in grades K-12 with agents of Colombian and Jamaican drug cartels,
5) Establish planetary chain of homo breeding gulags where over-medicated imprisoned straight women are turned into artificially impregnated baby factories to produce prepubescent love slaves for our devotedly pederastic gay leadership,
6) bulldoze all houses of worship, and
7) Secure total control of the INTERNET and all mass media for the exclusive use of child pornographers.

2:30 PM Get forty winks of beauty rest to prevent facial wrinkles from stress of world conquest
4:00 PM Cocktails
6:00 PM Light Dinner (soup, salad, with Chardonnay)
8:00 PM Theater
11:00 PM Bed (du jour)

Posted by Owlish at 09:36 PM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

January 15, 2006

Queen Live at Wembley Stadium

This concert is currently playing on the Ovation channel. They just played "Who Wants to Live Forever." Good stuff. Makes me wonder if Freddie Mercury knew he had HIV at the time [he was diagnosed with AIDS in '87, according to the wiki]. [the concert happened in '86].

Posted by Owlish at 01:11 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 14, 2006

Rudyard's After Action Report

The bands, not that hot, at best. Project Walkabout was out of tune, Mr Plow was better technically but too slow for good metal. And they had the fog machine going full strength, to the point it got cold and damp.

The bar itself is pretty cool, I'd go back. Decent beer, decent burgers. The crowd could be described as artsy or eclectic; a few guys that set off my gaydar, in couples; more lesbian couples. More gothic crowd by the time Mr Plow came on stage.

The somewhat bizarre thing was, my friend sent out an email to 5-6 guys, including me. No one else came [just me and him] [he's straight, by the way]. Makes me wonder, if I leave the Houston area, who would he hang out with, when he wants to get away from the house? Not an original thought, but he described me as a very low maintenance friend, and I thought about saying something along the lines of that's because I've been letting myself be taken advantage of.

Don't get me wrong, I do get something out of my friendship with him and his family. His kid calls me "Uncle." and that's probably the closest I'll ever get to having a kid of my own. [And, yeah, this is a recurring theme. But I think I'm getting closer to channging the tune.]

Anyway, played some pool. We both sucked. Had a few beers, left around 12:30. The band was still playing, but he was done and I was tired and my lower back was sore [not the most comfortable chairs in the world.]

Posted by Owlish at 08:33 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

David Hasselhoff, my hero

The image is burned into my brain. Curse you Llamas and NERS!

Cult Icon Hasselhoff





You are Hasselhoff, the Cult Icon. You revel in your enigmatic and confusing popularity moreso in the positive aspects of it than the confusing or unclear parts. You are the shining star of the world: more specifically, of Germany. Someday, you will be featured in a ticker-tape parade. Someday!


Take this quiz at QuizGalaxy.com

Posted by Owlish at 08:03 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 13, 2006

Party at Rudyard's

Looks like I'm wandering to Rudyard's tonight with some friends. Some interesting local bands playing: Project Walkabout and Mr. Plow.

It's pretty damn cool I can check out what the bands sound like, instead of reading some review that only gives me a vague idea of the sound.

Posted by Owlish at 08:47 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 11, 2006

Best Blonde Joke Ever

My sister's a blonde, and she generally hates blonde jokes, but I bet she'd like this one, over at The Daily Brief

I followed the trail back at least 20 blogs, one of the longest strings I've seen. :)

Posted by Owlish at 10:02 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 09, 2006

California pics

A few pics from my recent trip. These are from various California beaches.

Hmm. The files are too large to upload to the MuNu server. Maybe Flicker?

Let's try this page. I think, in general, I'm going to need something to reduce the file size.

In the meantime, here's a SouthPark guy I made, several months ago. Using the editor that I'll find in a sec.

View image

Posted by Owlish at 05:34 PM | Comments (2) | TrackBack

January 07, 2006

10 reasons Gay Marriage is wrong:

From Scott Kurtz at PvP:

1. Being gay is not natural. And as you know Americans have always rejected unnatural things like eyeglasses, polyester, and air conditioning.

2. Gay marriage will encourage people to be gay, in the same way that hanging around tall people will make you tall.

3. Legalizing gay marriage will open the door to all kinds of crazy behavior. People may even wish to marry their pets because, as you know, a dog has legal standing and can sign a marriage contract.

4. Straight marriage has been around a long time and hasn't changed at all; women are still property, blacks still can't marry whites, and divorce is still illegal.

5. Straight marriage will be less meaningful if gay marriage were allowed. The sanctity of Britany Spears' 55-hour just-for-fun marriage would be destroyed.

6. Straight marriages are valid because they produce children. Gay couples, infertile couples, and old people shouldn't be allowed to marry because our orphanages aren't full yet, and the world needs more children.

7. Obviously gay parents will raise gay children, since straight parents only raise straight children.

8. Gay marriage is not supported by religion. In a theocracy like ours, the values of one religion are imposed on the entire country. That's why we have only one religion in America.

9. Children can never succeed without a male and a female role model at home. That's why we as a society expressly forbid single parents to raise children.

10. Gay marriage will change the foundation of society; we could never adapt to new social norms. Just like we haven't adapted to cars, the service-sector economy, or longer life spans.

Posted by Owlish at 08:43 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

January 06, 2006

Stripper's Song

Your Stipper Song Is
Master and Servant by Depeche Mode

"There's a new game
We like to play you see
A game with added reality
You treat me like a dog
Get me down on my knees"

Yawn, dancing is so boring without a little spice.
What Song Should You Strip To?
Posted by Owlish at 02:23 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

New Years Resolutions

Via Letters From NYC

Your New Year's Resolutions
1) Get a pet rock

2) Eat more oysters

3) Travel to Australia

4) Study taxidermy

5) Get in shape with ballet
What Should Your New Year's Resoluton Be?

In other words, have more gay sex.

Posted by Owlish at 02:20 PM | Comments (7) | TrackBack

January 05, 2006

"Gay Bar"

You may have seen the flash animation with kittens playing guitars to the song "Gay Bar," but have you seen World of Warcraft characters dancing to it?

H/T: The Malcontent.

Posted by Owlish at 09:09 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Truth Laid Bare: Porn

TLB can do custom topic searches. Someone visited from the "porn" site. Why, exactly, I dunno. I think this guy was tagged due to weird news regarding a woman claiming someone broke into her house and downloaded porn.

Six Meat Buffet shows up on the list too.

Anyway, maybe I should be the goto guy for libertarian geek queer porn. There's an unfilled niche.

Posted by Owlish at 03:50 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Mardi Gras Galveston

I am sure the question most on your mind is, when is Mardi Gras being celebrated this year? Feb 17-28 are the main dates.

Official website.

Note that a couple of Krewes will be coming from New Orleans, so it may get wild. Also, the only time they're charging for tickets is Friday and Saturday of the second weekend.

Posted by Owlish at 12:31 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 04, 2006

Flying Spaghetti Monster Crafts

It's a little late for this holiday season, but maybe by the time December 2006 rolls around these could be done.

Flying Spaghetti Monster crocheted hat. H/T: JP


Flying Spaghetti Monster pin made with silver wire.

FSM knitted pin.


Or, you could make a FSM plushie for selling on eBay.

Or, the original instructions.

Posted by Owlish at 04:56 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Porn Star Quiz

One last one.

Your Porn Star Name Is...
Dr. Feelgood
What's Your Porn Star Name?
Posted by Owlish at 01:14 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Christmas Quiz

No comment.

You Are a Fruitcake!
You taste like nothing else in this world.
And get ready, you're about to get tossed!
What Crappy Christmas Gift Are You?
Posted by Owlish at 01:09 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Inner Child Quiz

Hmm.

Your Inner Child Is Sad
You're a very sensitive soul.
You haven't grown that thick skin that most adults have.
Easily hurt, you tend to retreat to your comfort zone.
You don't let many people in - unless you've trusted them for a long time.
How Is Your Inner Child?
Posted by Owlish at 01:07 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

I Don't Have a Problem

I drink, I get drunk, I fall down, no problem.

You're An Alcoholic
Time to go back to step one.
What Kind of Drunk Are You?

Via Not Exactlt Rocket Science

Posted by Owlish at 01:04 PM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

January 03, 2006

How Evil Are You?

I knew I was evil, but I didn't think I was this evil:


How evil are you?

Via: The not-quite-evil Anarchangel.

Posted by Owlish at 09:26 AM | Comments (5) | TrackBack

January 02, 2006

Kingdom of Loathing

So, the people I've been hanging with have been playing Kingdom of Loathing for the last 4 months or so. So I've started a character, who is currently afraid of drunken rats.

Wiki here.

Posted by Owlish at 10:48 AM | Comments (1) | TrackBack

New Year's Resolutions

Via The Right Side of the Rainbow, comes a list of various gay bloggers' resolutions.

And as gay bloggers from Texas seem to either be bald or have extremely short haircuts, I resolve to try such a haircut.

As well as the usual eat less/exercise more resolution.

Posted by Owlish at 10:27 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack