Updates for today-
Sick. Death seems imminent. Wife unconcerned. She says, “It's okay.
I look really good in black.”
Cold upgraded to Wrath, not Wrath of God or even Wrath of Khan but
Wrath of Bubba Ho-Tep.
So sick, I can't even smoke a cigar. Life is so tragic Rossini
stopped by wanted to pen a tragic opera about my suffering.
No, I'm never melodramatic
Monday, December 1, 2014
I read between three and five books a week, That's a guesstimated average, many times I have exceeded that, reading two books a day. I have almost 500 books on my Kindle many of which I have read multiple times. My wife bought it for me to reduce the number of books I brought home each week, she was only partly successful in that. I have shelves and shelves of books in my house and some where around twenty books in my ready pile I need to get to. In fairness I do have to read for the military and some of the books are rather dry, so I have been know to skip “How Terrorism Ends,” or “War by Other Means,” or “Fixing Failed States,” for the latest Bill the Vampire story.
I'm a fast reader, so a story has to really draw me in otherwise I slow down and start to notice things, like plot holes, or technical inconsistencies, or heaven forbid a grammatical mistake. A grammarian I am not, I have an editor for a reason, so if I spot your mistake, there are a dozen that slid by me that others will catch.
So that's the key for me, the story has to suck me in. I can forgive editing mistakes, POV shifts, even weak character development if I'm entertained. However, if an author can not draw me in I will notice imperfections and then things tend to slide downhill messily. Another problem is that I've done a lot in my life, so technical mistakes are spotted. If you try and have your hero bank his spaceship in space, I'll recognize you're either ignorant of how gravity works or ignoring gravitational law. Not really a big deal by itself, but if said character then engages is zero gravity sex with the incredibly nubile triplet princesses of Zeta Seven, and phrases like, “budding bosoms,” or “throbbing manhood,” are used, I'm going to probably lose interest.
It's simple, entertain me. If you want my money and my support write something that I devour. All else are mere words.
Tuesday, November 25, 2014
First Mr. Wong's article then my refutation
David Wong, the author, would be correct with his assertions of people banding together to rebuild, if the disaster was localized. Building a community requires stability, consistent laws and governance, work, both the need for the job as well as the location, consistent weather to grow things, safety from zombies/ marauders/ foreign armies. With out these element things may work for a while but eventually the group is overrun, implodes from the inside, members leave, or are killed off.
Japan was able to rebuild because the United States was stable and we could sell/ lend/ trade resources with them, and help them recover. Further Japan while devastated was stable in that it had a government, it had safety, it had stability. Farmers could farm, fishermen could fish and workers could go to their job.
If there was a truly global event, where no where is “safe” then you would have small bands roaming about in the wreckage, fighting with each other over food, gas, and women. Some of those groups will be lead by charismatic nut jobs who would do their damnedest to carve out an empire of blood slaughtering indiscriminately. If you were “other” you would be killed or at least driven off just as ISIS has done in Iraq and Syria. Yes, they have laws and government, but that is only for a select few that all agree theologically, try and move there as a Buddhist and see how log you survive.
And the Walking Dead does address the bigger community issue, those groups keep getting over run because they are a fixed target and can be overwhelmed. It happened to the refugee centers, to the major cities, and to the National Guard guys slaughtered by the Governor. The main group has been able to survive because they have been willing to flee when they had to and were small enough that they could.
Sunday, November 23, 2014
Thursday, November 20, 2014
Revenge was simple. Pure. You had purpose and clarity. Phone calls…they complicated life. Had I known what was going to happen, I’d never have answered the damn thing.
I was driving up a ridge in the Green Mountains of Vermont. Now that the morning mist had finally burned away, the mountains towered over me. Leafy green rose up to meet wispy clouds and an eye-scorching blue sky. The early morning chill was gone, and I’d rolled down the windows. For a moment, just a s...econd I forgot and got ready to stop and admire the view, maybe take a picture for—
The familiar ache gnawed at my stomach. Sarah. Would I ever get used to not being able to share things with her?
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
While I was deployed I watched a movie called Llyod the Conqueror. It was in the bargain bin of our PX, and I figured since I’d never heard of it, the movie was a straight to DVD T&A low budget film. I was only partially correct, it was Canadian. So it was low budget, they obviously did not spend any money on the script, as the lines were cheesier than the Wisconsin State Fair. As for the T&A aspect, I’ve seen more on network television, and been more aroused by episodes of the cartoon, She-Ra.
The worst had to be the actual plot, however. It was about LARPing. Now just on case you do not know what LARPing is, essentially it is playing Dungeons and Dragons in costume with foam swords. I will fully admit to playing D&D, and rather enjoyed it, but LARPing is a bridge to far for me. There’s being nerdy, and then there is full-on double barrel woman repellent. The authors and director of this cheese slathered, cinematic atrocity went past the point of stupidly nerdy and onto creepy when they brought in the dudes in horse costumes. The main protagonist and antagonist had to ride the "horses" for the climactic battle. Think two man horse costume with the guys nut to butt, and the one in front making horse like sounds, if the horse was wacked out its head on Ketamine and having an orgasm.
So just like Bikini Girls on Ice, another of my favorite Canadian cinema classics, where I was rooting for the killer to hurry up and whack everyone to stop the stupid, when Llyod the Conqueror was over I felt dirty, ashamed of what I had just done, bereft of my mojo, and less intelligent.
Sunday, November 9, 2014
Why physics sucks
I've been reading, on my Kindle, a lot of indy (self published) books some very good, others, a one time read. I just finished “Bio-Weapon” by Vaughn Heppner. It's the second in his series and for most of it, as far as I can tell, he's right on the money with everything. Up until the hero is encased in an armored suit with a gel protecting his body as he's launched at 25G's in a guided missile to board an enemy ship.
I don't care how much you armor someone, or what you do to cushion the human body, if it's traveling at 25 G's it's going to be chewed up internally. Vasculature is going to be stressed and even burst. The brain which has the consistency of Jello is going to be smooshed against the skull, until it escapes through a hole. All in all a bad time.
There was a crazy dude named Col Stapp that did some human tolerance experiments on the effects of acceleration and deceleration, but he kept the time at 150 milliseconds. Gotta love the 50's when there were no rules on research. A NASA researcher named A. Martin Eiband then extrapolated the data and developed tolerance curves, now called Eiband curves. The problem is that if you get to even .2 seconds it only takes 5G's to cause damage (on the low end) for sudden acceleration. For uniform acceleration, it's a bit better, but you've still have the possibility of damage at 10 G's after 2 seconds.
Kinda cool paper on what Stapp and Eiband did here
So what should have been a great book was ruined by my own knowledge of obscure trivia. Sigh!
I guess this also means with out artificial gravity we'll never leave the solar system, unless we build generational ships. Bummer.