Leaving E3...

Man, I'm getting bad about this whole posting thing, aren't I?

I'm sitting in Long Beach airport, having gotten here way too early for a flight that doesn't leave until almost 11 AM PDT. That's still...2 hours from now.

E3 was fun, if exhausting, but I have to wonder about the long term viability of the show. It just seemed...small. And quiet.

But I got to play a lot more stuff than I've played in previous E3s and we stayed in a nicer hotel than previous ones. Now I just have to keep's been a while since I haven't been finished when I leave, but this time it was unavoidable.
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it's been a while

I know, I's been weird and busy.

I can no longer futz around about my health - everything is fine but my cholesterol.  I'm working on that one with a new vengeance and maybe that will help me drop some of these pounds I put on.

A friend of mine was killed last weekend on her bicycle.  That really hurt.  Now Roy and I and Marshall are talking about having a northern Virginia get-together for some of our friends...

Next week is my birthday - I turn 32 on the 2nd.

I've got two Nats game this weekend, one with my parents, and a kickball tournament on Saturday morning.  Scored my first run last night, that was cool.

I've read The Sagan Diaries and Axis recently, and I'm almost through with Spook Country.  I've also got Mathameticians in Love (damn, I can't spell that word), Thirteen, and Halting State.

That last one is written in the second person.  Kind of annoying.

Runo Knows...Daemon

Daemon by Leinad Zeraus is not a complete book.

It is the story of a computer programmer named Matthew Sobol.  Before the novel begins he is dead from brain cancer.  As a brilliant and rich programmer, he left behind some programs to achieve his goals.

Those programs have activated and start off by murdering two of his coworkers and then attacking other people overtly and covertly starts recruiting others.

This is a technothriller - some of the gadgets in there are a few minutes ahead of now, in that sort of technological curve, or perhaps a bit exaggerated, but not necessarily implausible, except perhaps for the overall intelligence of the daemon.

The book isn't perfectly written but it is entertaining.  The big problem is that it's anticlimactic - each time it seems like it's reaching the climax of the story, it just kind "blah"s out, and the ending of the novel isn't really an ending, even in that sort of "in real life, there are still loose ends" kind of way - there are no resolved ends, really, other than a tendency to kill off certain characters or to make you think some characters are dead.

So there's a sequel coming out.

I enjoyed the book.  I thought it was interesting and thought-provoking.  I was seriously cheesed off by the ending, however, and would hesitate to recommend it until the sequel (scheduled for late 2008) comes out.


Had a eye doctor appointment and a physical today.  The former went perfectly, as always, the lasik is holding up perfectly.

The latter was something I hadn't had in quite a while.  Aside from the usual booze lecture, everything else seems fine so far, but we'll see what the tests show.  I had to get a tetanus booster, which means my arm is all sore now.

I also had to fast this morning and thanks to the blood draw decided not to drink.  Which means the delayed hangover kicks in; if you drink before your body kicks out the poisons from the previous drinking, the body delays it, so as to handle it all at once.  Having had a few drinks a few days in a row, sort of, that meant, well, today sucked.

I did accomplish some other things: bought a bowling ball, got the tap handle from Dogfish Head for Matt, got back our cooler from last Sunday's cookout, replaced the lemon and lime juice in my bar fridge.

Tomorrow is a happy hour here at the complex after work; we'll see how that goes.

cookout weekend

It was definitely a weekend of cookouts.  Sure, Saturday I managed to avoid helping move a tree, but Sunday and Monday both were taken up with what ended up being all day cookouts.

Sunday was at a friend's house (basically) across the street.  There were many types of meat, we had a few cigars, there was even a hookah with apple tobacco in it.  Marshall made tiki drinks, I brought a pitcher of whiskey sours and a thing of gin and tonics.

Monday I had a debate - go to the party at Roy's with a lot of people I didn't know, hang out at home, or go see a movie.  Then I got a call about  a party with some of my friends from my kickball team so I decided to go to that.

Pictures follow after the LJ cut...

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And now it's back to work time, and the hope that I can dry my liver out a bit...

Runo Knows...Darwinia

This is another book that is hard to do here without giving out spoilers.  I'm going to do my best, however.

In 1912 the entire continent of Europe was replaced.  The new continent is similar, geographically, to the old, but completely devoid of any humans or even Earthly creatures.

In the wake of this catastrophe, history has changed quite a bit - the economy has issues and religion has taken over in a lot of ways.  By 1920 humanity is making a dent into the dangerous lands of Darwinia.  Guillford Law (I hope I spelled that correctly, the book isn't here with me), a photographer, is heading into uncharted lands with an expedition that ends up revealing more than he could ever imagine about what happened on that fateful night in 1912.

The book changes.  Don't buy it if, strictly enough, you're looking for a book just about this.  If you've read some of Robert Charles Wilson's other books and liked them then you'll be more likely to like this book.

I personally enjoyed the heck out of it.

(I'm not even going to really tag this book like I do most books to help preserve anything else about it.  I hope I haven't given away too much as it is...)

Runo Knows...The Dawn of War Omnibus

I have to admit that I was a bit hesitant about this omnibus.  I'd wanted to read these novels but they were written by C S Goto, whose work I had approached with trepidation before.

Fortunately for me, I was wrong.  While not as good as, say, Dan Abnett's "Gaunt's Ghosts" series, it's a solid workman piece of 40K fiction.

Taking its cue from the first installment of the Dawn of War video game, the omnibus follows the Blood Ravens and their Captain of the Watch, Captain Gabriel Angelos.  Plagued by doubt and strange dreams after having called in an Exterminatus of his home planet of Cyrene, he is charged with helping another planet, Tartarus, from orks.  That leads to a full scale against other forces and the destruction of that planet in a warp storm.

Further events take him to other planets and threats from Chaos, Eldar, and even necrons.

As I said, it's pretty workman.  It's not bad, by any means, and it doesn't feel kind of pretentious despite a lot of Eldar in it like it might have.  It's entertaining, at least, if not completely enthralling.  I wouldn't recommend it as a first read if you're just getting into the 40K arena but if you've played the game, or are just looking for more to read in the 40K universe, it's worth a look.

almost minus one cat

I usually have my laptop on my bed as I get ready to go to sleep.  Last night Rza decided to knock it off so she could get more attention and the warm spot it leaves.

It then blue screened and wouldn't boot.

Fortunately it's working now.

I've got a Runo Knows to write about here today since I know I haven't been updating often.  I just finished rereading Accelerando by Charles Stross - man, do I love his stuff - and I started Darwinia by Robert Charles Wilson.  I love the feeling you get when you start reading a brand new book full of "what will happen", "what is this world like", and everything else.  That's probably why I read lots of sci-fi.

I've got more to say but it's going Friends Only.
not end well

I guess I gotta buy a bowling ball

The Runo Knows have been light on the ground.  That's what I get for re-reading two 40K omnibuses.  I'm working on a third one now that's new (the Dawn of War one) and it's better than I expected.

Matt and Cathy went out bowling on Monday night.  There's a BowlAmerica right near by, near 4 P's, and it has $11 all you can bowl from 9 to midnight Sunday through Thursday.  They had so much fun, in fact, on Monday night that Tuesday they went out and bought their own bowling balls.

I went with them last night despite a bit of reluctance due to my wrist.  My wrist, in fact, help up quite well.

At one point I told them that if I managed to beat both of them, I'd buy my own bowling ball.  In the last game, as we squeezed it in just before midnight, I won, rolling a 138 versus whatever the heck they got.

That's also a personal best, not that I've done it that much or anything.

The balls that they got were about $70, including custom drilling.  There was a Steelers bowling ball that you can get at almost twice the price, but you have to order it, and I'm not certain whether or not that's something I actually want to do, drunken jests not withstanding.

Beer and bowling.  Add in cigars and it would've been perfect.