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Letter from the edge of Christmas

Okay, calling this blog entry a "letter" is maybe a stretch, but this definitely feels like the edge of Christmas, given that tomorrow I have my office Christmas party and Clara has hers on Friday.

For the first time ever, I started my Christmas shopping in November, although that didn't stop me from waiting until the day before the work party to by my secret Santa gift.

The promise of a return
Tabletop Role Playing Games!



I bought a game big game book, based on a long-time love of the work of artist Simon Stalenhag, who inspired many with his paintings of the rural Sweden of his childhood, chock full of giant robots and rusting futuristic metal hulks. Tales from the Loop is an old-school table-top role-playing game, in which you play young teens who solve mysteries in an alternate history 1980s where certain technologies blossomed, giving the world fusion, giant robots and mysterious particle accelerators which appears to be causing strange things to happen in the PC…
Recent posts

Painty sketch

I felt the urge to start designing a 2300AD starship. It's one of the first times I did a quick sketch on my IPAD, and I absolutely love it. What will I do with all my pens? Oh, who am I kidding, I'm still going to eat trees, but I will probably do most sketching on screen. I think the only downside is the weird feeling of drawing on glass, which seems a bit slippy-slidy.

Lights on

Weekend
On Saturday I took the boys into the city centre for a quick visit. We didn't go through our usual routine because the plan was to take them there on Sunday, to watch the Christmas lights being turned on.
Lights on It was great. We usually only find out about the light lighting night after arriving in town in the morning, when it's too early to eek it out until the time of the ceremony. This time, we planned ahead and arrived in the middle of the afternoon. The boys enjoyed going on some of the small fairground rides, at least after waiting for the first one to be fixed.



Toy storage and a rare night out

Our lounge area has been increasingly buried under wooden train track pieces and Duplo Lego. We held back sorting the problem out because we're planning a complete top-to-bottom refurbishment of the lounge, someday soon. Well, last weekend I cracked, we went to Ikea to get some storage units, I told myself that if these units don't form part of the new room, I'll put them elsewhere -- maybe in the boy's room or even in the loft space.




After rushing to build these Kalax Shelving units, we celebrated by having a night out -- after settling to boys down at my mum's. We had a fantastic meal at Lokanta, a Turkish restaurant in Broomhill.




Speculations about Star Wars IX

*This was a Quora submission that I wanted to keep an eye on, given that in 1981, I correctly predicted the ending of The Return of the Jedi.*

This is the hardest Star Wars movie to predict, and I think that is great. I liked The Last Jedi, it wasn't perfect but I enjoyed the twists. To answer the question I'd speculate in much broader story-telling terms. Johnson seems to be preparing us for a finale that breaks out of the cycle, the way that the Matrix trilogy did. In the Matrix, Neo discovers that he is only the latest permutation in a long-running cycle - which is never resolved, only rebooted/continued. In the third movie, Neo chooses a "third way" and breaks the cycle. Breaking the cycle I believe that Rose and Finn's brief discussion with DJ about the true nature of the conflict teases the possibility of a similar third way by which the Star Wars might end. They briefly confront the fact that the pendulum of galactic conflict is hanging off a larger mechani…

familie tijd

This week we went to see my sister, Tracy and her family who live in Haarlem (Grote Markt, not Globe Trotters). We had a fantastic time, just hanging out and then on Tuesday we went to Amsterdam for the day.






Last night I finally started to repopulate the loft space - post roof replacement.



Good prospects for a night out with Clara on Saturday night.
Just a week away from the Mid-term elections, where we see if Trump is finally forced to face investigation.

Flitter McFlod

New Roof
This was the week we had a new roof fitted.

It was really weird to go up into the loft space while only the felt layer was in place. A dark place becomes light. I wonder if there are translucent materials that could be used for roof tiles.



I'm eager to get stuff back up there, now that the work is completed, only it doesn't appear that the insulation has been done yet. I have a worry that the fact that the loft space is boarded, which they would usually need to remove to get the nearly-30cm think rolls laid down. We will see. Today, the scaffolders are coming to start clearing up.


Sunday morning
Just like the old days, a trip into town while mum sleeps late in preparation for a night shift.