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Kevin Klemme
March 09, 2020
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Kevin Klemme
January 27, 2020
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Kevin Klemme
August 12, 2019
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oliverkinne
December 19, 2023
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December 14, 2023
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Mycelia Board Game Review

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oliverkinne
December 12, 2023
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oliverkinne
December 07, 2023
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River Wild Board Game Review

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oliverkinne
December 05, 2023
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oliverkinne
November 30, 2023
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Jackwraith
November 29, 2023
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oliverkinne
November 28, 2023
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Spitfireixa
October 24, 2023
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October 17, 2023
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October 10, 2023
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October 09, 2023
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October 06, 2023
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Outback Crossing Review

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What TRIPS are you TAKING?

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19 Dec 2023 00:27 #341339 by Cranberries
This could be about travel or possibly drug use--your call.
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19 Dec 2023 11:28 - 19 Dec 2023 17:58 #341348 by Cranberries
My wife and I just went to Portland for a couple of days because a friend has a mostly empty condo and we have cheap flights from a regional airport 10 minutes from our house, so it's a pretty easy voyage. We stayed on the 15th floor and on the ground floor, in NW Portland, there was this upscale board game store called Mox that also has a restaurant and I think craft beer. The employees were describing games to customers like they were vintage wines. They had great curation, and I saw a few hardback copies of Pirate Borg, even. At one point we walked over to a thrift store so I could get a knit cap, because 40 degrees in Portland is actually cold when the wind is blowing, and I found an unused copy of Mike Fitzgerald's Mystery Rummy: Jack the Ripper for $3.00.

Portland is such a city of contrasts. Across the street was a McDonald's with a permanently closed lobby which was a gathering place for the unhoused. They had a sign that said "walk up window" but we couldn't figure it out and split a $13 breakfast at a nearby bar. We had to walk around people sleeping or passed out against the McDonald's, which is unsettling because first you see someone who is stuck in that life, and then you slowly get used to it, and neither of those responses are good for the soul.

Apparently 30 percent of the downtown office space is unleased so a lot of owners are defaulting on their payments and returning buildings to the bank. Meanwhile a new Ritz Carlton hotel just went up.. The hotel promised to replace the food cart hub they displaced with some kind of food retail on the ground floor but shockingly that has not happened yet.

I came across the term "haute hipster" which describes many of the folks I saw who were in their fifties, dressed in a look that sort of feels casual but then you realize everything they have on is very upscale. I mean, I am not some kind of aging punk or anything, walking around in Chucks and a gas station attendant jacket--I am not pure. I buy everything at Costco and am completely beige. If you dropped me in the desert they would never find me.

A lot of people came to Portland after destroying San Francisco for the culture but the money slowly erases that culture. None of this is news.
We still had a pretty good time.
Last edit: 19 Dec 2023 17:58 by Cranberries.
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19 Dec 2023 12:43 #341350 by cdennett
Replied by cdennett on topic What TRIPS are you TAKING?
During the early days of the pandemic, my wife discovered hockey (and I rediscovered it, having not really watched it for nearly 20 years) as it was the first sport back on TV. It's also a fantastic spectator sport, and coming from a soccer background, generally intuitive. Living in a city without a hockey team (Houston) we were forced to adopt the Dallas Stars as "our team," which was fortunate as they went on to lose in the finals. Anyhoo, fast forward a few years and my wife is a bit of a hockey fanatic. So in the summer 2022 she had the idea, since she's not done a lot of travel domestically, of wanting to visit every NHL hockey arena. This would primarily be an excuse to go to these cities that we otherwise would struggle to find a reason to visit and spend a few days in the area. I thought this sounded like fun, my only requirement being that we would only go to see Stars games in those cities (for those that may not know, NHL teams play every other opponent home and away at least once every season).

Fast forward a year and a half and we've hit 7 arenas (if you don't count Dallas): Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Buffalo, Detroit, Calgary, and Edmonton. My wife is a bit smitten with Edmonton as she discovered you could make friends with anyone by talking hockey, but I think she'd hate the weather. Our next planned trip is less exciting, comboing LA and Anaheim in March, places we've been to several times (though not to the arenas). But we're going to see the Indian Wells tennis tournament right afterwards. Did I mention Tennis was the other sport she's obsessed with? And before you ask, there are 32 NHL teams, so 22 to go after that, though Arizona doesn't count until they have a real arena...

In less interesting but far more expensive travel, taking the family to Italy over the holidays: Rome, Florence, and Venice. I've been to Florence (only major city in Italy I've been to in the 4 weeks I've traveled there), but taking the more traditional tourist role since we're dragging the 16 and 21 year old with us. I really hate trip planning, like despise it, but don't trust someone else to do it. At least we're running out of time and it's going to be what it's going to be...
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19 Dec 2023 13:20 #341351 by dysjunct
Replied by dysjunct on topic What TRIPS are you TAKING?
Getting ready to go to the Devil's Ashtray, aka Fresno CA, to see my mom and brothers for New Year's. Taking the kid. Not thrilled about the drive, but looking forward to seeing family, letting the kid play with cousins, and visiting a few select geek friends in the area.
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