Archive for the ‘Site nonsense’ Category

Bean Beam Head

Thursday, July 4th, 2013

Smashed my head on a support beam today. And it hurt quite a bit. I knew I should put something cold on it, but our icepack had gone missing, so I was left choosing between bags of frozen berries, frozen corn, and frozen edamame. I went with the edamame, although it does make me wonder if there’s a job as injury sommelier where you could pair frozen foods with injured body parts needing icing.

I was hoping this injury might get me writing my book, because my friend Tom had mentioned a neurological condition where people with head injuries start writing a lot. Alas, no such luck. But I suppose in a way I’m lucky it didn’t work out, otherwise there would be the temptation to give myself a concussion whenever I needed motivation. So I’m glad that my (still painful) head injury didn’t make me write anything.*

Previous to smashing my head, I wrote this column about marriage.

*Aside from this blogpost.**

**A discussion with Tom last week confirmed the opinion that my blogging last decade was more entertaining. I am going to try returning more to the form of random blather, and less self-promotion***, since the people who read my blog seem to prefer it.

***Buy my books!

April is the Cruellest Month?

Wednesday, April 25th, 2012

Well, my nomination would be February. But as I explain in my most recent column, April is the Crewelist Month.

Still, this month has been somewhat cruel. My partner’s office closed down, resulting in dozens of people who lost their jobs, including her.* And I’ve been so busy with a freelance project that we’ve barely had any time to play board games at all — although I did attend PAX East in March, where I got to play Outpost (fun, although I still prefer Scepter of Zavandor), Innovation (still addictive), Quarriors (fun, but a bit too luck-based), and Legend of the Cipher (so fun, I’m joining the development team). And in April I got in a few rounds of Flash Duel, which I mean to review as soon as I can take some pictures of my first edition.

But I digress. I was talking about April showers of cruelty.¬†They say it’s better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all. But I will tell you that it’s much worse to have a false hope dangled in front of you and then pulled out from under your feet than not to have seen it at all.**

So, a few days ago I got an email from someone wanting to buy a banner ad on my blog. Two years ago I received a cold email from a random company wanting to buy a text ad, and said text ad is still atop my site (go click if you like online bingo, non-US readers!), and has brought me a few hundred dollars. So I figured a banner ad, though more intrusive, would bring more money which would be really handy roundabouts now. I suggested a price I thought was a touch high, and it was accepted without negotiation, to my surprised delight.

I looked at their instructions for putting up the banner ad, and it included instructions to install a Wordpress plugin, which set off my Spidey-sense. So I Googled the name of the ad company and the word “scam”, and came across this blogpost, which confirmed that indeed this was spam/scam, and not the deus ex machinadvertisement I had initially hoped. And I mean, I know two weeks ago I wasn’t expecting that money at all, but it’s sure more cruel to have it appear and then disappear.

Speaking of cruelty, April is National Poetry Month, so I’m going to share one of the short poems I’ve been writing daily throughout April:

“Absolutely True Sonnet of the Afternoon Flash Game”

Thisafternoon I played an online game
Where players build a deck and PvP.
The first of our three rounds my foe did claim
And, poised to win the second, typed “GG”.

But then, I drew the cards to stay alive,
While his deck seemed to give him cards that suck.
And somehow, I had managed to survive,
He’d not, and said, “You had a lot of luck.”

Retorted I, “Your luck was in rare cards.”
Said he, “That wasn’t luck, I bought each rare.”
Said I, “Th’economy these days is hard,
If you can spend on flash games, your luck’s fair.”

Said he, “I’m well-employed, I must confess.”
Poor me, at least I’d had a lucky guess.

I ended up losing the third game. But at least I discovered a new alternative energy source, which is to hook a generator up to Shakespeare***, who is surely now turning in his grave.

*Her comment: “I’m just waiting for someone to ask me if I looked under the couch.” Yep, I’m still in love.

**It’s even worse than a horribly mixed metaphor where hope is suspended from the ceiling one minute and serving as a rug in the next. Hope: It’s a combination chandelier and carpet! It’s a floor wax! It’s a dessert topping!

***I know, I know, that’s my solution to everything.

The Game of Gaming

Thursday, October 20th, 2011

Do you play “social games” like farmville or sims social or mobwars, etc.? If you’re playing Facebook games, or know someone who is, you really need to read my guide to efficient social gaming.

Naturally, a gamer like myself tends to look at everything as a game. For example: Life*. This week, we made delicious enchiladas and tortilla soup, and I got to see Weird Al in concert. And I performed at two improv shows. So I get a lot of points this week.

A few weeks ago I lost some points when decided to let go all 72 of their¬†Contributing Writers. I was one of those 72 writers, and had been writing about Board Games for them since early this year. So that was a bit disappointing. But I’m a gamer, so when I lose points, I look for solutions to gain more points. And thus I came to the decision that I should continue writing about boardgames**, since I enjoy reviewing games and feel that I am good at it.

Thus, in the coming months you will start seeing me post more about boardgame reviews right here on Or, at least linking to and discussing them here. I’ll be posting the full reviews on BGG, because that’s where most serious gamers are likely to look first for reviews. Today, I posted the very first review for the upcoming Puzzle Strike Upgrade Pack***. And I’ve got a few older reviews on there, for games like Power Grid: Factory Manager and World of Warcraft: the Boardgame. Those older reviews lacked photos, but going forward I’ll include photos in all my reviews.

I’ve also got a crazy idea for an experimental… well, maybe I won’t spoil it just yet. Suffice to say, my next post will have something bizarre that may or may not work.

* Yes, I know technically there is an old boardgame called “Life”. It is a terrible game with little volition where everyone has to follow the pre-determined path and pre-set milestones. People who treat real life like this oft end up miserable. One day I may write a book about this.

**Albeit, not About Boardgames.

***Short version: I didn’t realize Puzzle Strike needed an upgrade until I tried this, but now I wouldn’t want to play without it.

A Good Saturday

Sunday, August 23rd, 2009

People always talk about Good Friday, but most people prefer Saturday. My Saturday was particularly good, because we discovered that you could make bibimbap* in the rice cooker, and then my improv troupe had a show which was probably one of the best we’ve ever done. This is probably unrelated to the fact that I half-mooned the audience as a plumber, served as another member’s parachute and binoculars, and sang about having ice cream and sex.

I’ve gotten too lazy** to post all my columns to this site, and the Transcript site hasn’t been posting all the recent ones, but you can still read my column about clouds. Aristophanes had nothing to do with it. An observation that reminds me that sometimes, I am too educated for my own good. Last week I was asked to do a user review of a site where people keep an online tally of what places they’ve visited. Asked for how I’d describe it, I said it was the apotheosis of conspicuous consumption, and then I realized that I am a giant egghead and people asking for site feedback don’t want to hear about the sociological theories of Thorstein Veblen***.

Having used up all my online boardgaming credit on my last order, I knew it was time to stop buying board games. But it wasn’t time to stop trading for board games, and so for the past week and a half, I’ve been eagerly awaiting a package from Canada containing a number**** of games. I’ve been checking the tracking number every day, and the blasted thing is still in Montreal. That’ll teach me to trade internationally. Although it’s silly that Canada is international. We’re all North America, so we should just be friends. I mean, Alaska’s not international, and it’s further than the rest of Canada is.

* Of course, I think of the hot clay pot as the key ingredient in bibimbap, and we don’t have that. But the slightly crisped rice, the bulgoki (korean-style beef BBQ), the egg, even the hot sauce, we got it all. And wow, was it tasty.

** Not that I wasn’t already very lazy. But I’ve also started thinking maybe I shouldn’t have everything I write online. Maybe I should just keep a few best-of columns up, and take down the rest, in case I want to do a book of them later. But I haven’t taken any columns down either, leading me to believe that in fact, I’m just lazy.

*** Even though he was totally right. Seriously, tourism as conspicuous consumption is already pretty obvious given the focus on photos and knicknacks. And then a site launches solely so you can brag to others where you’ve been, and how can you not bring up conspicuous consumption, right?

**** Ten. Including a game that combines complicated strategic programmatic movement with a wind-up toy. I can’t wait.

Migrating For Summer

Monday, May 18th, 2009

Not birds. Not even me. I mean my website. Apparently my hosting company decided to migrate it, so if you wondered why you saw three “Hello World I am a new Wordpress user” posts over the past few days, that’s why. Also, if this never shows up in the RSS feed, I’ll know why. Knowledge for everyone: This is why I was a philosophy major.

Actually, I suppose I will be doing some migrating this summer. My improv troupe is finally starting to tour more widely, with performances scheduled not only around our local area, but in Springfield, Providence, and Albany. Locals should catch us at Main Street Stage on May 30th, because after that it’s a while before we’re performing in town again. I’ll also be migrating* to Florida to meet some other nerdy rappers, but more on that in a month or two.

May, meanwhile, has been a very good month gustatorially speaking. In addition to the usual stir-fries and soups, we’ve made sushi (california rolls, inside-out rolls, and nigiri), pastitsio, spanakopita (fused with steak and onion pie), raspberry mango chipotle chicken, fish tacos, and a dozen little pizzas including the “Margherita” (Fresh mozzerella, fresh basil, fresh tomatoes, well-behaved chicken), the “French Classic” (Pear, Goat cheese, Onion, Sliced Almond) and something I like to call “Invisible Emu**” (Apple, Cheddar, Bacon).

And triple chocolate rootbeer floats.

One of the sites I wrote for,, recently went under, so I wrote this column. Then I saw my first movie in theatres this year, Star Trek, so I wrote this other column. Then I just finished a less funny column before posting this, which is sometimes what happens when I get political, but that column doesn’t see print for a few days, so you don’t have to worry about reading it accidentally yet.

*I suppose technically, that’s all more like visiting and not migrating, and that anyone nerdy would know that.

**The first apple cheddar pizza I ever made also had emu*** on it, and it was so good that all other apple cheddar pizzas for the rest of time will want emu.

***Ground emu meat, that is. Not a whole emu**** or emu hair.

****Emu is a pretty fun word.

Lacking the Marketing Brain

Tuesday, March 24th, 2009

Although it may lack the charm of the Sales Guy vs. Web Guy video, if you are interested in Management vs. Marketing brain differences, you should check out my latest book review in the USA Today.

Speaking of marketing, one of these days I should really re-design my website. Sadly, I no longer have whatever program I used to create it originally (possibly dreamweaver?), and lost the list of used fonts and colors, and fear it would be a large undertaking with dubious value. But not only do my links need to be updated, but my columns page is woefully out of date. Also, back when I built this site, it was mostly on a lark, so the “donations” link was funny. Now that I’m using it as my professional site, I feel like I should probably remove it, but I’d have to redo the whole header. Maybe I can get some federal bailout funds to do so. I kid, I kid.

Besides, I think there’s a bigger bailout problem Obama should be worrying about. I’ll even tell you about it in my most recent column, which I am almost ashamed to admit was inspired by a post a while back on Ephblog* asking about the demise of the joke.

I could swear there was something else I was going to mention when I started writing this post, but I got distracted again. Oh, I remember! If you have any affinity for video games, you might enjoy these articles I’ve been writing for I like video games because playing them a little is fun, but playing them all day is a sign of depression. I think that’s sort of neat. And I’m going to go play video games.

*A blog where Williams alums discuss various tangentially-Williams-related things, albeit mostly how Williams should be running things. I used to read it frequently when I was still more connected with the college community, now I read it infrequently.

Who Gives A…

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008

It’s a phrase that has a number of interesting endings. Sure, there’s damn and darn, but there are also more colorful expressions like rat’s ass, tinker’s cuss, and airborne intercourse.

Anyway, speaking of giving, last week’s column was about Maimonides and the eight levels of charitable giving (and how it relates to the old Batman TV series). You’ve probably noticed that I am not always instantaneous with my column updates. However, I’ve arrived at a reasonable solution. I have added to the sidebar, under current projects, a link that says “The Pun Also Rises”. This is a link to a search for my name on the Transcript site, which should always bring up my most recent columns. As an added bonus, if I am performing at some newsworthy local event, or have been arrested for making jokes at a funeral, it will probably find that too.

Who was that masked man?

Monday, November 17th, 2008

Well, we’re back on the air. Things seem to have been fixed, thanks largely to the efforts of one of my generous friends. When he heard what had happened to me, he emailed me and offered to fix things. I am indeed fortunate to have such do-gooders in my circle.

In fact, this isn’t the only do-gooding that he has done. He has also written a book which deals with the scourge of child slavery that is still present in the world today. So he’s fighting the efforts of malicious hackers *and* child slavers. Whereas today, I mostly sat around in sweatpants and looked at the Internet. Perhaps I will be more productive tonight.

Technical Difficulties

Sunday, November 16th, 2008

Howdy folks,

My site seems to have been hacked at somewhat, so I apologize for any problems you may be having with it. I’ll try to have the damage fixed as soon as I can. (which, okay, may not be really soon since it’s mostly beyond me.)


A kick in the RSS…

Saturday, October 25th, 2008

Apparently the RSS feed on this page has stopped working. I’m not sure why, but I guess if you’re reading this, it’s either finally fixed itself, or you don’t need the RSS feed anyway. I will continue poking around and trying to fix it so you can get Reliable Seth Stuff.

Speaking of which, like clockwork, here’s my column from yesterday. I’m still a little sad about that, but I think I made the right choice. Also, now that the presidential debates are over, I’m converting my freestyle rap podcast to a more general news format. I’ll be trying to post one episode a week at, so go listen to last night’s episode and hear me rap about the news as I read it so you don’t have to.