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Pancakes and RSS

There is an advantage to living with other people. There are several, in fact. One of the advantages, for example, for living back home with my family is that my brother is far better at making pancakes than I am. However, nothing ventured, nothing gained, and today I had three and several half pancakes, but all the whole pancakes were tossed properly.

Also, Pancakes with icecream and melted chocolate for the win.

I had a big rant about RSS and Atom and how it’s just fucking life up for those of us who want to produce things where the user can press a button and have it Just Work.

But I can’t be bothered, so here’s the straight dude’s guide to Brokeback Mountain

2006 Imported From Epistula


Okay, lack of content. Really sorry. I have no excuse.

I do, though, have the best mitigation report, the only such excuse valid in all parts of the world.

I have a note from my mum.

And with that crypic reference to forthcoming content, I shall leave you to guess.

Imported From Epistula Projects

Go Ask Alice

I was asked to read stories into a microphone by a friend named Helen, because a fanfiction reading that I did shortly beforehand helped her get her newborn son to bed.

Said son started school, I believe, a little while ago. Yet still the project rages. Well, angsts. Every so often I remember, feel guilty, and start reading Alice into a microphone again. This time I got all the way up to chapter four before entropy kicked in, so I’ll stop for now and pick it up in the morning.

In the meantime…

Computer Games Imported From Epistula


It is a lonely business being a super hero.

(Sorry, I do mean for there to be more content around, but I haven’t had time to write anything more interesting between LARP, CoH and all the other things I’m failing to do properly. This, ironically, being one of them. I do have an article on Larp, what it is, why I do it, why it’s fun and such, but it’s in my head fractured and illogically put together. People who I Larp with will see the inherent irony in this, I’m sure. Until then, we have an article on my City of Heroes character. Sorry).

Raynebow came to Paragon city over a year and a half ago now, and has reached about midway in the ranks of Super heroes. I haven’t been playing him as much recently, mostly because I have his arch nemesis (“Solochrome. Someone took his colour. He is not a happy bunny, so he hurts people.”) on City of Villains. He has changed costumes a couple of times, and gone though a nuclear reactor once. (City of Heroes has this really cool concept of Respec missions. Basically – In Character – this series of missions which ends up with you fighting inside a nuclear rector to save Paragon City causes your powers to go on the fritz. Out of character, you get all your XP back and are sent back to level one, and can then level up all over again all at once, this time without any of the powers you don’t actually want and with cool new abilities. Raynebow swapped out Flying for Super Jump (Basically leaping around the landscape 500 feet at a time) with a free respec (Given because Cryptic (..Studios, who build the game) futzed around with the powers a bit, so they gave people the opportunity to make the decisions again with the new sets). He now has Fly again, because it makes his cape flap nicely. Also, he’s a blaster, which means he does metric shit loads of damage (He can one-shot an enemy of equal or slightly higher level once every couple of minutes, providing nobody’s shooting at him) (Build Up + Aim + Snipe, for those CoX players who may be reading) but will fall over if someone looks at him funny. Thus being a super jumper isn’t really terribly good, because every so often he will be bounding across the landscape and accidentally land on the head of some Lycanthropic bastard space nazi (Or “Council” as they’re known) who will promptly stun him and batter him to death like a spandex clad pancake.

Raynebow hasn’t yet joined a Supergroup. Well, he hadn’t. Running though the game without a Supergroup seems to be an advert for every tinpot fool to send you an invite to theirs (People in a Supergroup earn “Prestige” for their group when they fight things. The more of a Supergroup in a team doing a mission, the more prestige they earn. Also, they get a prestige boost for every member that joins, and an extra bonus for the 15th member), so Raynebow has formed his own Supergroup, called “Colourific” to stop people asking him to join theirs. (I’d actually quite like to join a normal supergroup that does things – I’m in one on CoV – simply because there’s new content for supergroups fighting each other which looks really cool).

Having got his new Supergroup Charter, Rayne also has a supergroup base. Sadly, with only him in the group, the base is a little small.

But the only way to fix that is either to recruit people (Which I don’t really want to do) or get Prestige. So it was time to go do some missions.

Doing someone else’s mission, Raynebow ran into an old friend. (This is an actual CoH villain. Names have not been changed to protect the guilty)

Computer Games Imported From Epistula

Civilized Society

Since a few people on my friends lists and reading lists and such have mentioned they owned the game, would anybody be up for a Play By Email game of Civilization 4?

epistula Imported From Epistula

Valentines Updates

Okay, apart from the little redesign thing, a few other things have gone into Epistula today, and these are they:

Wildcard Archives Part One

You can now put a wildcard in the year (so*/01/26 for articles written on my birthday)

Ideally, this would work for all things, but I can’t really see the point. All articles written on a date (or within a range, see below) is handy, whereas all articles written for, for example, any March is less useful. And all entries written on the 14th of the month is just silly. Not that this will stop me, but only when I rewrite the archive query builder to be a little more supportive of this kind of thing.

Ranged archives.

Only for days, unfortnately, but you can now put in to get all entries within a day of today, or even*/12/23-27 to get all entries around christmas any year.

2006 Imported From Epistula love

More low flying babies

(If you’re reading this in an aggregator of some kind, it’s probably worth visiting the main site)

Good morning. There’s something special about today, but I can never remember what it is. Ah well, someone will remind me, I’m sure.

(All articles written on this date)

Computer Games Imported From Epistula


I have found the worlds most insane game.

It is very cool.

It is called

Baron Von Puttyngton vs. The Cancerous M.C. Escher Maze… OF CHEESE

and the title is the least insane thing about it.

From the site:

You are Baron Von Puttyngton, a jiggly cube made of putty. You are in a maze made out of cheese that looks like an M.C. Escher drawing. i.e. the stairways are facing all kind of strange directions. All the yellow cheese is cancerous, i.e. it keeps sprouting new cheese in front of itself. The goal of the game is to turn everything into blue cheese, which is not cancerous. The level ends when everything is blue cheese. In each level the mazes get more complex, but the cancerous cheese still grows at the same rate. The player traverses the maze be rotating The Baron or by rotating the gravity vector 90 degrees, which makes forward into down and up into forward. The game never ends, and you never die.

The game is only for Windows.

Go try it

Imported From Epistula stories

I stepped forwards…

…and the ground felt strange beneath my feet. Less solid, somehow, less there. There was the sound of thirty children being very, very quiet, and I found that disconcerting so I opened my eyes.

I wasn’t standing on anything.

That is, I’d walked off the edge of the box, as I’d intended to, but instead of landing on the crash mats, I was there, three feet in the air in my white gym socks, shorts, T-Shirt. My teacher fainted and I distinctly remember the sickening crack as her skull hit the floor.

She fell, we said. Nobody ever mentioned it again.

I can fly.

I’m not any kind of super hero, or at least not in the four-colour underpants-over-your-costume sense. I don’t have super strength, it’s just that anything I’m flying with is weightless, is flying with me. If it touches the ground, it’s heavy again, a fact that’s almost killed me several times.

How? I just… push in the right direction and I go there. I don’t know how high, really. You’ve read the story of Icarus? I think of it every day. One day if I go too high, will I pass out? What happens if I pass out when flying? do I fall? do I hover there, in the way of passing jet aircraft?

People know. My brother knows, as do my parents. They don’t understand, but they know.


…and now you know too. I’ve been wanting to tell you since we met, and more so since the engagement, but I promised not to tell anyone else. I don’t know what I’d do if you left me and told everyone; but then, I don’t know what I’d do if you left me anyway.

Thats it, really. That’s why I wanted to come all the way out here, just to tell you that. I’m sorry, I’m so sorry I couldn’t tell you before.

That’s it. Monologue over. Now.

Will you fly with me?

Current Affairs Imported From Epistula media


I have a love-hate relationship with the Radio 4 UK Theme.

The Radio 4 UK Theme is, for those evil non-uk people and also students who will never have heard it, a collection of traditional themes and tunes interleaved and played by an orchestra. It is, in fact, probably the original mashup. Like so many quintessential examples of British culture, it was composed by someone not native to this green and pleasant land, a Mr Fritz Spiegl, and it is played every morning at half past five to mark the return to the airwaves of Radio 4 – the long lost BBC Home Service – after its place is taken overnight by the tattered remains of the World Service.

I have, as I mentioned, a love-hate relationship with the Radio 4 UK Theme. This is because from October 2004 to December 2005 while I was spending five hours a day commuting (And yes, I shall shut up about it soon) the UK Theme was the thing that would always be playing at half past five to lull me into a false sense of awakening. So, on the one hand, it is a wonderful thing in the abstract, a great piece of music, part of our cultural heritage, its loss will be a damning indictment on the state of the country, etcetera, etcetera.

On the second hand, I shall be quite happy if I never hear the dratted thing ever again in my lifetime.

The thing that worries me slightly is that it will be replaced, we are told, by a ‘pacy news briefing’ which, to my mind, is the very last thing anybody needs at Oh-dark 30. Not least because it comes between the glacial news briefing of the World Service and the normal speed news briefing of the standard Radio 4 News. This means that the effect of this will be to replace: ”[news] [music to wake up to] [news] [Farming Today] [Today Program]” with ”[news] [more news] [news for farmers] [Yet still more news]” which isn’t really any use at all.

So, they are campaigning. Mike Flowers, who used to have some Pops is leading the charge to Save the theme by getting people to sign petitions! for the WIN! Because that will change EVERYTHING!

Also, they’re going to release it as a single, so that even if they do replace it, you can put the CD on instead. Yay technology.