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Everything posted by Psychophant

  1. Let's not forget Sir Terry Prattchett, best selling British writer in the 90s. Actually I find that I am missing the little asides, the complicity with the reader that is so prevalent in the book but are difficult to translate in images unless you are willing to break the 4th wall. Something that IMO Fleabag does very well, but it disturbs or distracts many people. In the case of Good Omens the ending was foreordained, it is the traject what is important. Enjoying a lot Doom Patrol. It seems like DC response to Legion, and a quite good one, mixing the same irreverence in a more co
  2. I already ordered a game for April 2020. Just because I feel I owe the money to CD Projekt Red. So many hours of gaming joy. One of those games that if my equipment is not up to spec will make me buy a new computer in March. Meanwhile I revisited all my old CP2013 and 2020 books. To remember Night City.
  3. It is not mine, and my own limited poetry experiments are always in Spanish anyway. But this touches me in all the wrong places. A.E. Housman He would not stay for me, and who can wonder? He would not stay for me to stand and gaze. I shook his hand, and tore my heart in sunder, And went with half my life about my ways.
  4. Playing mostly first person sandbox games, I have wondered about all this technological cgange. I have to confess that I am hesitant to try this technology because I may lose myself. Checking Steam. I have clocked over 800 hours already in Skyrim, and over 500 in each of the FPS Fallouts. I suspect the addiction factor will be even higher. Playing some old games, and worried about how many games I quit before finishing, in some cases liking them but not really interested, usually sequels, such as Dishonored 2b or X-Com 2. Meanwhile I am enjoying the giant monster mechanics of Drago
  5. Maybe it is the afterglow talking, but Fleabag season 2 is among the best TV I have seen this year. I have put the trailer for the 1st season because it is also very good, and necessary to follow the second, and to avoid some spoilers for the 2nd. . I can only imagine how it must work in a theatre, but the transposition to TV is brilliant. Killing Eve was also there, and I found out Phoebe Waller-Bridge made the transposition from novel to series. Even some familiar faces in both. Much better than Good Omens, I am afraid, despite Mr. Tenant's solid work (he got the best
  6. Wolfe is usually quite frustrating, so I understand fully. He toned down a bit in what I believe is his most "friendly" book, Soldier in the Mist, where it is just weird and hard to follow, not to mention casual with rape and death, as the ancient times themselves.. Started with the Fifth Head of Cerberus, but I am not sure I want to tackle Peace next, so I may skip the chronological order. I do not think I have read the three boks of Latro in one go...
  7. I believe I have all of Ms. LeGuin's books, except for a few short stories. She wrote about people, rather than tech, so her works have aged much better than her contemporaries. I still prefer her short stories to her longer works, and I still use for spiritual guidance her Californian take on the Book of Tao. Finsihed this week Hannu Rajaniemi's Invisible planets collection. Good new perspective. As I have already said, probably it will not be like that, but his fiction feels like our future, rather than the wish fulfillment (humans as we know in space, and fuckable aliens) of m
  8. Also, like half the world I am watching the slow motion ending of Game of Thrones. This evening (local time ) we will see the fourth episode, so please wait till tomorrow for spoilers. The battle irked terribly my armchair wargamer instincts, as the living did all the things they should not have, but then I realised that they did not even think they would survive, except through the single option of killing the night king, so everything relied on giving Danny a shot to him with Drogon, tempting with suicide charges and suicide stands to make it feel it has won. When that did not w
  9. I am a big fan of Cowboy Bebop. At the beginning of this century a Spanish chain aired the episodes in random order with repetitions, so I saw some of them several times and I was missing others. It is one of the few DVDs I actually watch often. The anime movie is more of the same, mainly focused on Faye and Spike, but with (of course) an amazing soundtrack and the epic old plane parade. But for me the real jewell is the music. Now that I think about it, maybe it is a deliberate ploy, as ten years earlier they did the same with the first seasons of Northern Exposure, and I also en
  10. Actually in the 2003 Megane the only thing I could do was check levels and refill different reservoirs. It is also true that I only needed to change oil every 30000 km, and never needed to refill anything but the washing mix for the wipers. It was the first car I knew of that needed a pit (or a lift) to change the headlamps, but that number was growing fast. It was a bit weird, keeping by law a set of lamps that I could not replace... Not one major mechanical problem in fifteen years.
  11. This is how most of us do, not forgetting that before you get many driving hours and you get most actions to muscle memory, it is sure you will at least hit several immobile inanimate objects, and if you are unlucky some moving ones. My parents let me use my mother's Opel Corsa (really small car, that we had got second hand) after she crashed against some poor French tourists, destroyed their luggage and their holidays, and decided she would never drive again. I crashed in ice against a bridge protection and semi totaled it four years and twenty thousand kilometers later. It was q
  12. We were going to watch Game of Thrones after dinner. Instead we spent 90 minutes just watching the fire. There is something that calls to our primitive selves.
  13. The problem is that it has reached a point where there is no good solution. No matter the result a sizable number of people will feel robbed of their agency (that word, again), which is a key point in the move away from democracy. From a selfish point of view, six more months where we do not need to fill customs paperwork for all the products we send to UK. Six months without UK-REACH, and a few months without daily updates from the freight companies and the European Chemicals Agency. The first hurdle, EU elections in UK. That will be as funny as a slow mo traffic accid
  14. I see I have not updated in a while. I finished Infomocracy. Not bad, though I did not feel it was that groundbreaking. Still many good ideas , so even though I did not really believe in the characters I will get the following book at some point. Then an old guilty pleasure, a Vlad Taltos book from Steven Brust I had not read, Hawk. This avoids the excessive exposition and magical metaphysics (though there is some of that) and just gets into improbable capers and lots of pointy items. I liked it, but I have read all the others, so there is quite an investment in them. T
  15. I have driven rentals in Italy, and it fits perfectly with driving conditions there. Doing 300 km in a highway was not the best, as it is too light and wavers a bit. Although the Large and Xlarge versions take away the main charm of the car, they are better suited for long distance trips, or having more than two pieces of luggage. The Italians I know are quite happy with it, but they drive less than 10.000 km a year, mostly urban.
  16. Psychophant


    Penguin UK is still cover-less, and with a launch date of January 23 2020. Random House, as already mentioned, has September 3. Six months seems a bit tight, but possible. If the dates hold I am unsure whether to take an US hardcover. I dislike the paper quality of most of those I have (mainly Gene Wolfe and Neal Stephenson).
  17. Back home, though feeling a bit under the weather. There must have been something dodgy either in the fast food shawarma, eaten in the traffic jam to the airport, or in Alitalia's business class lasagna. It is not as clear cut as it may seem... Got six free hours yesterday morning, so we got one hour at the Pyramids and five hours in traffic. Still breathkaking, like few human made objects are.
  18. In Cairo, settled in a big hotel+casino (only foreigners allowed) when not dodging traffic in an armoured SUV with an armed driver as escort, visiting companies that in most cases were set up by Lebanese or Syrian exiles, discussing Saudi Iranian politics over coffee, and how Dubai is going to implode in any moment now, considering that our host set up a Dubai subsidiary five years ago when he expected Egypt to implode, any moment now... And some details you will not see in the Western news, such as a potential war over a dam in Ethiopia, halving the Nile flow... Or the horror show
  19. This reminds me of the old board, the fashion for Myers-Briggs tests that gave us a clear majority of introverted, and over half the results were INTJ or INTP, which represent less than 5% of the general population.
  20. According to him (we had a discussion in the old board, now lost): And (a potentially useful note here), in rereading my books (or at this point reading them) in one massive draught, read them in this order if you want them to make the most (or any) sense: RANDOM ACTS OF SENSELESS VIOLENCE, HEATHERN, AMBIENT, TERRAPLANE, ELVISSEY, and GOING, GOING, GONE. My Russian novel, LET's PUT THE FUTURE BEHIND US, can be read whenever you want to read it independent of anything else.
  21. Started Infomocracy, but work, traveling and housework is cutting in my read time. I am currently worried someone at Google could be considering it a strategic plan... I have not yet started with Killing Commendatore, but read a mini-format Murakami's short story, Birthday Girl. Unusual in having a female main character, it is interesting but extremely short. I also squeezed in Dave Hutchinson's novella Acadie, a classical hard sci fi with a twist. I was wishing it wre a full novel instead, till the twist shows why it was a one-off, and yet it makes it much more credible. Recommended.
  22. We saw Alita last Sunday. Quite good as a spectacle. The kind of movie you need to see in a cinema. I liked most of the cyber, and how she really behaves as a teenager with berserk tendencies. I never was in the anime/manga, so I cannot say how it rates. At home mostly series, most of them old. I just finished with Justified (almost jumped the shark but managed to end with dignity), and now alternating the 3rd season of True Detective with Northern Exposure in DVD. I am a bit down with Counterpart, as I liked the first season but not so much the new one.
  23. I found another one yesterday while strolling in the evening through Florence. It may be a bit old, as it has suffered some vandalism, and it is very similar to other works.
  24. Thanks. Once I read Killing Commendatore I will have read all his works published in English, so this is quite interesting, though unsurprising reading. Men without women goes from strongest to weakest, in my opinion, but it is still a set of excellent short stories. However his point of view is so obviously masculine that I wonder how does a woman relate to his male characters. Maybe reading Banana Yoshimoto or Hiromi Kawakami. I find that the Japanese are actually living in our future, so their literature encapsulates our current urban alienation and humanity at the
  25. Trapped in Sunless Skies. It is even better than Sunless Sea, where I spent something like 400 hours and thousands of lives. To avoid if you do not like dying in stupid ways or reading carefully walls of text. And you get to drive a steam locomotive through the sky, learn a new vocabulary, and really affect the universe in meaningful ways. Except as a MP (from what I have seen).
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