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"Good News, Everyone": My Thoughts On Part One of The Mueller Report

After about six months of the media screaming about Trump and Russia Russia and Trump and breathless insisting that this time they had found the smoking bullet, by God, this time they had him, I eventually settled firmly into the somewhat exhausted position that once Mueller completed his report, I would read it and formulate an opinion of my own, especially since no one in the media appeared to be all that interested in being well, sane about this.

So when it finally came out, unlike many members of Congress, I actually sat down and slowly and painfully picked my way through the entire report, redactions and all. And at the end of the day, my biggest takeaway from this mess is that the whole damn thing is just so fucking bizzare it's kind of a head scratcher that the people involved actually behaved the way they did.

The overall report is two parts: one, looked into the main portion of the Special Counsel's brief- the question of the extent and success of the Russian interfer…

Star Trek Voyager, Ranked

I was on the hunt for another podcast to listen to and saw some recommendations for the Voyager-centric podcast, Seven of Wine, so I decided to give it a go and listen to their first episode about the pilot of Star Trek: Voyager, 'Caretaker' and then, I sat down and watched the episode again. And then, it was just too late- Voyager sucked me in for another re-watch and as I was going through all seven seasons, sometimes paying more attention, sometimes just using it as background noise, I started keeping track of the episodes that stood out to me with the grand intention of ranking all 172 episodes- but then sort of decided that was too much to handle.

So how did I do this? Kept track of all of my favorite episodes and at the end of it all, was surprised to find out that I had 100 episodes to rank. Then I set down to work and damn, this shit was hard, kids.

If there's a frustrating thing about Voyager, it's probably the fact that it's blatantly obvious they could h…

Netflix & Chill #63: The Wandering Earth

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Watched On: Netflix
Released: 2019
Directed By: Frant Gwo
Starring: Qu Chuxiao, Li Guangjie, Ng Man-tat, Zhao jinmai, Wu Jing, Qu Jingjing
Rotten Tomatoes: 71%
Pick: Mine

I read the novella, so naturally, when Netflix grabbed the movie, I sat down to watch that as well- albeit with a certain amount of trepidation- the novella is epic storytelling in every sense of the word and even with a huge budget and all the movie making magic you could hope for, this would be a difficult story to do well- but as it turns out, not only did they do it well, they absolutely nailed it.

In the year 2061, the sun has aged and is about tot urn into a red giant, which poses something of a problem for Earth, as they don't want to be destroyed in the process. The nations of the world consolidate into a United Earth Government and start constructing giant Earth engines to move the planet out of the current solar system. Humanity's population is severely reduced as catastrophic tides sweep the planet as t…

This Week In Vexillology #291: Some Thoughts On The Betsy Ross Flag

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So, this flag is officially problematic in some quarters now and since we're back and we missed the usual July 4th and Flag Day Specials, we might as well jump back into things with both feet and unpack some stuff about the Betsy Ross Flag.

The origin story of our flag is one of our Great National Myths and to be honest, it's still kind of controversial in parts. Generally speaking, most scholars and vexillologists don't agree with the usual story of a lady in a bonnet filled with the fire American Revolutionary Zeal staying up by candle light to hand stitch the very first version of the Stars and Stripes. The truth is a lot more complex and complicated than that- even though it's a great story and it's easy to see how it became some intertwined into our foundational mythology as a country.

The story in question was started in 1870 by the grandson of Ross, Willian J. Canby who presented a paper to the Pennsylvania Historical Society claiming that his grandmother h…

Free Write Friday #12: Let Us Begin

[SP] The Amish create a military.

"I still say it's sinful, Ezekial. We've always kept to ourselves and minded our own business."

"The world doesn't always care about us and our business, Jebediah," the other man replied. "Our beliefs are under attack. We have to defend the community."

The two men were walking across a field toward a large hill. At the top of the hill, there was the skeleton of a barn that had been erected that morning. Reaching the bottom of the hill, they began to hike up it, even as the man named Jebediah shifted uncomfortably. "Defending the community is one thing," he said. "This. This is something else entirely."

For so long, life had been simple. They kept to themselves. Practiced their faith. The young would have their rumspringa and some would leave, others would come back to be accepted into the faith and get married and raise families of their own. There had been an order and a rhythm to it all. …

Bookshot #120: Gravity's Rainbow

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Well, I did it. After several fits and starts, I finally settled down in January of 2018 and determined that I was going to crack this book wide open and I finally, after over a year of inching my way through it, finished Gravity's Rainbow.

I have no idea where to start with this book. It was frustrating, maddening, beautiful, genius, incomprehensible and rage inducing- sometimes, all in the space of a single page. Am I entirely sure I understood the plot? Well- to answer that question, I think you'd have to be entirely sure there was a plot- at least a conventionally structured one and I'm not sure of that. All that I'm left with if the nagging feeling that I read over seven hundred pages of either a work of staggering genius or complete gibberish and I have no idea which it was.

So:

The first part of the novel is the part that problem made the most sense to me and was the easiest to follow-- basically, it opens with Pirate Prentice awakening after a dream (and man, t…

And We're Back...

The Summer Hiatus is over and if you're reading this, I'm sure you've noticed we've changed up our look a little bit-- I figured it was probably time to shake things up somewhat.

What did I do on my summer hiatus?

I started a podcast, just for kicks. (New episode will hopefully drop this week, so stay tuned!)

Got one short story done and I'm real close on a second.

Got three chapters of revisions on the third book in the bag and I'm pushing forward on Chapter Four.

In short, it wasn't as productive as it could have been, but I also did enough to feel good about taking the wee break from all of this. It also gave me time to push forward on a few other things that will be appearing as blog posts over the coming months- so you have those to look forward to.

It's good to be back.