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Recollect Board Game Review

Board Game Reviews
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Your Backup Hobby

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10 Aug 2021 10:16 #325398 by DarthJoJo
Replied by DarthJoJo on topic Your Backup Hobby
Garden update! Definitely overwhelmed. I've handed out five grocery bags full of kale, cucumbers and lettuce to friends, pickled several liters worth of vegetables, and I still can't eat everything my seven beds are producing. On the one hand, it makes me feel like a master gardener. On the other hand, it feels wasteful. I'll do better next year, find more green bean, kale and cucumber recipes and never stop cooking them.

Anyway, pickled carrots and snow peas were amazing. Pickled radishes were fine, sweeter than I expected. Pickled cucumbers and green beans were disappointing considering how much better I've had. Pumpkins are already ripe, well ahead of schedule. Massaged kale is amazing, and I'm looking at eating it for lunch for the next few weeks just to keep on top of the harvest. Butternut squash are finally coming in and looking very pretty.

Very excited about my compost. Discovered a local bike trail doubles for horseback riding and has a manure bin. Definitely heading out to steal a truck bed full and mix in for the finest compost.
The following user(s) said Thank You: Gary Sax, RobertB, ChristopherMD, Cranberries, Sagrilarus, ratpfink, hotseatgames, sornars, mtagge

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25 Aug 2021 12:21 - 25 Aug 2021 12:23 #326026 by DarthJoJo
Replied by DarthJoJo on topic Your Backup Hobby
So I mentioned a while back that I switched from Nike Run Club to Strava for tracking my runs and bike rides. That remains the right decision, but in the last month or so I decided I actually wanted to start getting faster on foot. My mile splits over five or six miles on road had hovered between 7:30 and 8:00. So, while I prefer Strava for basically everything, Nike Run Club does have a solid library of guided runs, and I can run it simultaneously with Strava. There are audio tracks meant to inspire and encourage, to hear the stories of world-class runners or to guide you through speed workouts. The coaches talk you through a warm-up run and then give you times for perceived exertion and recovery. Through it I’ve been going on fartleks, long tempo runs and short, high-pace intervals. I mostly use it for the countdowns and timing, but the coaches are tolerable and not too saccharine in their encouragement.

Since I started mixing in these workouts, I’ve posted a few 6:40 mile splits within a five-mile run. That feels pretty good. I think I topped 6:20 once in high school, and that was with way more consistent training. I’m strongly opposed to paying to run races, but if I keep this up, I would like to run a sub-20 5k sometime.
Last edit: 25 Aug 2021 12:23 by DarthJoJo.
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25 Aug 2021 12:41 #326027 by the_jake_1973
Replied by the_jake_1973 on topic Your Backup Hobby
Those are pretty amazing run times!

I've been happy with the 8:30-9:00 range on my 5K runs, but I've seen some payoff with my speed pyramid work I've added. My biking has improved to where I can keep up with the local A group for most of the 30 mile stretch we do.
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19 Oct 2021 20:07 - 19 Oct 2021 20:07 #327320 by DarthJoJo
Replied by DarthJoJo on topic Your Backup Hobby
Garden update! Our unseasonable warmth should finally end this week and see our first frost, so the garden is done. Everything is pulled, and I’ve begun amending the soil with straw and finished compost. Snuck in harvests of snow peas and spinach, but the big winners were kale (seven brown paper bags stuffed full), pumpkins (twenty-two from two plants) and butternut squash (over thirty from three plants). Pickled beets and home sauerkraut turned out great.

Tomatoes underperformed. Plenty of fruit but so few ripened. More phosphorus or something should help with that, I hear. Can’t really complain for my first real effort, though.
Last edit: 19 Oct 2021 20:07 by DarthJoJo.
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20 Oct 2021 15:38 #327337 by the_jake_1973
Replied by the_jake_1973 on topic Your Backup Hobby
I've gone all in on my recent obsession with Mexican food. I'm grinding my own masa, making gobs of tortillas, scouring the local Mexican grocery stores for dried peppers and ingredients. I bought an Estrella hand grinder to see if the manual grinder can get me a finer grind than the food processor. My clay comal arrives tomorrow. A nice tortilla press is on the xmas wishlist. Three new cookbooks grace the shelves, of which Oaxaca is my favorite so far. I'm eyeballing one that is coming out in May called Masa by the owner of Macienda.

I haven't been this excited about a cuisine in a long time. The fact that my wife loves Mexican food as I do helps immensely.

I've never used piloncillo before and it blew me away. And how have I never had atole before. I could drink that every day.
The following user(s) said Thank You: JoelCFC25, Cranberries, sornars, Nodens, DarthJoJo

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20 Oct 2021 15:40 #327338 by Gary Sax
Replied by Gary Sax on topic Your Backup Hobby
Damn, that sounds good.

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24 Nov 2021 11:22 #328195 by DarthJoJo
Replied by DarthJoJo on topic Your Backup Hobby
Bird feeder update.

Switching from a blend to pure black oil sunflower seeds was absolutely the right choice. Way more popular with the chickadees now.

Maybe it’s too late in the season, but I’m struggling to attract finches. Switched from a blend to millet, and it’s even less popular.

With the appearance of a female red-bellied woodpecker this week, all local woodpeckers have checked out our suet. The pileated visit was hilarious as it was too big for the cage and couldn’t grip it and eat at the same time.
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24 Nov 2021 15:04 #328210 by Legomancer
Replied by Legomancer on topic Your Backup Hobby
Along with my interest in board games, my two years of mental issues removed my interest in everything else. I've been gradually rebuilding interests around me, with mixed results.

Crosswords: I got really into crossword puzzles, which I've enjoyed for some time. I enjoy the hard ones, and I even stumbled upon a collection of puzzles where the clues were so poorly edited and produced that they were their own weird challenge, and I totally dug it. I subscribed to the NYT Crossword app and do that puzzle daily, with my Sunday times between 20 and 30 minutes usually. (However, because the NYT is a shitty rag of a paper, I won't be reupping that subscription.)

Magic: I briefly tried to get back to MtG after giving it up in the late 90s. You can't go home again.

Spanish: I have been learning Spanish with the Duolingo app, and am nearing 600 continuous days of it. I do about 30 minutes of lessons a day. I'm getting pretty good at reading and writing, but I haven't done jack about speaking and hearing. I'm going to try to focus on that in the new year.

Comics: I write in the Comics thread about my Chronological Hellboy project. I also read through the big Locas and Locas II collections by Jaime Hernandez.

Programming: I had a project at work that I realized could probably be done with Mathematica/Wolfram Language. A co-worker who knows WL was going to code it for me, but his plate was kind of full, so over a weekend I taught myself enough WL to get the task done. I enjoyed learning it so much that I continued to play around with it, programming Twitter Bots and working on some random text generation with Markov chains. I want to get back to that project.

More Programming: Growing up, the video game series that most captivated me was the Ultima series. I started with Ultima III and played them all through VIII, along with most of the side games. I read a book -- Through the Moongates -- which was the story of Ultima, Origin Software, and Richard Garriott. The book is HORRIBLY written and edited, but I liked the subject matter enough to keep going. Anyway, my thoughts on Ultima and gaming have lead to me downloading Game Maker Studio 2 (the free version) and I completed the "Breakthrough" tutorial for it, where you make a simple Breakout/Arkanoid game. I then took the results and added things to it: more powerups, levels, increasing difficulty, extra lives, a cheat code, etc. It's been a lot of fun to play with and learn. Next I am going to do the "Little Town" tutorial, which is an adventure game, and if I'm feeling my Wheaties after that I'm going to try and code my own little Ultima-style RPG.
The following user(s) said Thank You: ubarose, Gary Sax, Cranberries, Jackwraith, san il defanso, mezike, hotseatgames, sornars, DarthJoJo

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24 Nov 2021 15:14 #328211 by hotseatgames
Replied by hotseatgames on topic Your Backup Hobby
Game Maker 2 is pretty cool. I used it to release a game on Steam in 2017. I have stopped and started making another video game a few times since then... even making something small is an immense undertaking.

I decided if I was going to do it again I'd use Unity. But Game Maker has a lot of advantages. For your purpose you might also want to check out RPG Maker.
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24 Nov 2021 16:28 #328219 by Legomancer
Replied by Legomancer on topic Your Backup Hobby
Unity was what I was going to go with but someone told me that Unity is really good for 3D games and a pain for 2D games and the opposite was true with GMS. I didn't know anything about RPG Maker, I'll look into that.

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24 Nov 2021 17:22 #328221 by hotseatgames
Replied by hotseatgames on topic Your Backup Hobby
Absolutely true on Unity. I however, use C# professionally, so Unity has a lot of benefits to me.

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24 Nov 2021 21:37 #328228 by san il defanso
Replied by san il defanso on topic Your Backup Hobby
I have always enjoyed cooking, especially baking, and when the occasion strikes, candy making. I’ve baked a lot of white bread over the last several months, and when we were still in Manila I tried my hand at bagels and soft pretzels. Hot work in tropical heat, and they were ugly as sin, but tasted good.

With the holidays here, I made some peanut brittle today. It turned out really well. I also made fudge because it’s the sort of thing that reminds me of my grandfathers, both of whom have now passed on.
The following user(s) said Thank You: ubarose, Cranberries, Msample, sornars, DarthJoJo

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25 Nov 2021 21:38 #328250 by the_jake_1973
Replied by the_jake_1973 on topic Your Backup Hobby
I made my first tamales the other week with masa I ground from nixtamal. I hadn't been a fan of them before, but I get it now. They were so good. Lard is so key. I'm making some more with smoked pork for my buddy's Punksgiving this weekend. A mash-up of Mexican and southern pit cuisines. The pork will go well with the Coloradito mole'. Fun times.
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05 Dec 2021 15:53 #328514 by dysjunct
Replied by dysjunct on topic Your Backup Hobby
I squatted a double Barnes for a set of six today.
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05 Dec 2021 17:10 #328515 by JoelCFC25
Replied by JoelCFC25 on topic Your Backup Hobby
"Hard water" season is nearly upon us. A hint of snow fell the other night and this week should finally see overnight temperatures plunge, so we might be about a week away from ice fishing. Some drunken mope already put his SUV through a (thankfully very shallow) bay on Lake Minnetonka last week, even though the patchy ice isn't even walkable yet.

I've upped my gear game a little this winter--my nephew is out of college, and appears to have decamped for sunny San Diego permanently, so my brother-in-law was happy to get his old sled and hub shelter out of his garage rafters. Picked up a surprise extra rod in the whole mess, so I can have a dead stick going with a minnow on it for walleyes that roll through, while actively jigging with my other rod. I'm getting a little buddy heater for Christmas that can hook up to a standard propane tank, so I can stay comfortable for long stretches at night.
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