Tweets from 2015-06-21 to 2015-06-27

Tweets from 2015-06-14 to 2015-06-20

Tweets from 2015-06-07 to 2015-06-13

Tweets from 2015-05-31 to 2015-06-06

On Game Design: Go Play Outside

I wrote a little bit over at Rattlebox Games about playing games outside:

This might be a bit of a conundrum.  The old stereotype of nerds huddling inside on nice sunny days isn’t entirely without merit, in part because of all the valuable cardboard bits our games have — we don’t want chlorine from the pool on them!  But just because you’re in fresh air doesn’t mean you need to leave the hobby at home.

Read the rest…

Head on over there to see what I wrote.

May music roundup

It’s been a good month, music-wise.  The albums I listened to were all pretty good, with a variety of styles that kept me on my toes.  Here they are:

Emusic

  • Great Big Sea, Play – This album was an instant hit for me, as it is the album GBS was touring for when they recorded their amazing live album Road Rage.  It’s cool to hear the studio versions of these songs I know so well.  On top of that, I got to know some songs that weren’t on the live show setlist, especially “Seagulls” and “Recruiting Sargeant,” the latter of which is a depressing tale of hundreds of young men who went to World War 1 and didn’t come back.  “Beggar Dude” is a weird last song that turns on a repeated refrain of “do dah dah.”
  • The Soul of John Black, A Sunshine State of Mind  – A nice mix of soul and blues sounds with a contemporary feel, I like this album quite a bit.  The more bouncy tunes like “Johnny Bear (Give It To Me)”, “Shake it Off”, and “Lemon Tree” are joyous looks at the world, while the smoother songs like “Beautiful Day”, “Lenny Love Cha Cha”, and “Summertime Thang” are fine love songs.  My favorite, though, is “Magic Woman,” which lands at the venn diagram in the middle of the songs on this album.  Very enjoyable.
  • Don Giovanni Records Sampler – A mix of songs from this publisher.  Lots of straightforward alt rock that didn’t do a lot for me. There are a couple standouts like “Swan Dive” from Waxahatchee (which is more of a meditative ballad) and “Old Friends” by Noun.  I’d also point to “Switched On” from Stormshadow as a miss, for me.
  • Pete Seeger – four songs. All pretty much standard fare, though “Souix Indians” sure didn’t age well.  Yeesh.
  • Garfunkel and Oates, three songs from Slippery When Moist – “Google” is a funny take on online dating, and “Go” is a longer version of their show’s theme song.  I like the re-take of “I Would Never” shifted into the realm of science class too.

DanC Best 2014 – Every year, my friend Dan sends out a compilation of the music he’s been listening to.  It always takes me a while to get it into the mix, but it’s a delight once I do.  Here are a few favorites

  • “Shake it off” by Taylor Swift – The woman knows how to write a catchy song.  It’s good.
  • “Rattle My Bones” by The Secret Sisters – good harmonies, good rhythm.  A little close to modern country for my taste, but on the right side of that divide.
  • “Home” by Dolly Parton – I like this song a lot.  A good tune to put on a “feeling bummed, want to feel better” playlist.  Parton talked about this song in her interview with Jesse Thorn on Bullseye, so it’s fun to hear it in full.
  • “The Trailer Song” by Kacey Musgroves – full-blown country, but damn funny.

and a few songs that didn’t work for me.  These are songs that grated on me every time.  I really didn’t like:

  • Suzanne Vega, “Don’t Uncork What You Can’t Contain” – two moments (one singular, one repeated) drive me nuts in this song: the mention of Macklemore wanting to “pop some tags” and Vega’s urging that you have to go on stage because “page or the stage is the cage for that tiger rage that you feel.” Like fingernails on a board.
  • RuPaul, “Sissy That Walk” – This is a catchy song, with good humor (his voice pops in from the side at :16 to scoff “bitch!”) and a nice message.  I like it as I listen until it gets to the chorus.  Right after RuPaul says “Now Sissy That Walk,” there’s this weird break with an electronic beeping sound and this weird pattern.  AWFUL.
  • Toni Braxton, “Sweat” – I just find this song annoying.

Anyhow, it’s always great to have another DanC compilation to listen to.