22 December 2010

Posting by Coercion

My wife asked me on the phone the other day why I haven't posted on my blog recently. I don't really have a reason aside from not feeling like I have much to talk about. It is rainy season here in Iraq, so every couple of days there is a downpour and some fairly spectacular thunderstorms. I have one of those every day kind of jobs, so I work, eat, read books, go to the gym, and sleep, with a little time on the side for playing video games and calling home. It pays the bills, but being the introvert that I am, the constant presence of other people in my personal bubble is a bit taxing. And that's all I'm going to say about that. There is a guy on post who plays bagpipes, so when I walk from my room to my job I often can hear them playing in the distance. I think the bagpipes sound much better when played in the distance.

I read Battle Cry of Freedom over the last couple of weeks. It was a pretty good time-filler and gave me a pretty good general understanding of the events surrounding the American Civil War. My ability to retain information is not that great, but I think I captured a lot of it. I'm not sure what to read next on the subject of the war, though. I'll have to do some research. I've read a couple of other books (Lone Survivor by Marcus Luttrell and On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society by Dave Grossman) as well as copies of White Dwarf my wife purchases and sends to me.

It's quite a task for her to go and get the magazine, as being pregnant with twins she doesn't get around so well, and my 2-year old is obsessed with several of the objects in Hobbytown (just like his dad) and wants to run around and play. They have a table with a wooden train track and some kid-sized shopping carts that he likes to push around the store. The kid is crazy about anything he can push around, like carts and strollers. When we went to the zoo in Mississippi he didn't care about the animals at all. He just wanted to get out and push the stroller. We had to bribe him with a ride on the zoo train just to get him to look at the animals and stay in the stroller. He loves wheels, which is fine until you're trying to get him to leave Hobbytown and he is trying to load up the little shopping cart with toys so he can push it around. Believe me, a toddler can scatter toys much faster than two adults can put them away. One of us usually has to drag him screaming and kicking from the store while the other cleans up and purchases the items. My wife handles it by going and buying my magazine while he's at the sitter's house. But either way I appreciate the effort on her part to make sure I have the things I want while I'm here.

She also has mailed my box of paints and Dwarves to me, so when that arrives I will try to incorporate some painting into my schedule. It will depend largely on whether or not I get into some university courses, as those will take up most of my time. Right now it's not looking like I will get in, so I may wind up painting a pile of Dwarves while I'm here. I'm not sure how I will get them home safely once painted, but I will worry about that later. Other than that I haven't done much hobby-related aside from the usual planning and window shopping. I obtained a bunch of Foundry figures for Old West gaming as well as a couple handfuls of Foundry Pirates from an eBay auction one of the posters on The Miniatures Page was running. I've been trying to determine a starting point for my 6mm ACW project, but haven't got any further than I was a year or more ago.

There are some new Skaven models on the way for Warhammer Fantasy that look interesting, although they won't liely fit in with my current army. I consider the Skaven to be in three distinct sculpting styles which I refer to as early, middle, and new. Most of my collection are from the middle style, with a few of the early sculpts for things that never got produced in the middle style. I have some unbuilt stuff in all three styles, but the whole thing is a logistical mess. As any good wargames project should be, I suppose.

I've also been thinking a lot about the Lord of the Rings, especially with some new elite figures out for the Moria Goblins faction. I've got a fair number of Goblins already, some of them are even painted. I also have some Easterlings painted and a pile of them in reserve. I also have a fair number of Dwarves, and I'd like to build up an army of Gondor as natural enemies to the Easterlings. But again that's all in the future. All I know for sure is that for me the Lord of the Rings figures have been some of the most enjoyable figures to put paint on. They seem to be made to take paint well, even in the hands of someone like me. The poses are a little repetitive sometimes, but using a few different hair or trim colors can even that out somewhat.

I guess that's about it for today. I will probably continue to post with some irregularity, but that will vary according to my mood and my access to a computer with an internet connection. Things are going fairly well and I am looking forward to coming home on leave in a couple of months and hopefully meeting our two new babies, assuming they cooperate.


  1. Keep safe, and head down...

    Have a read of my ACW project blog (there's a link from my main blog page), it's not 6mm but it may give you some idea's and thoughts?

  2. Glad things are going fairly well. Stay safe, bring back some Iraqi sand for basing, and best wishes to you and yours.

  3. Glad to hear you're staying occupied. Keep safe mate, and aren't wives brilliant?!

  4. I took a look at your ACW site, Steve. I'll probably be referring to it some more as I fill the project out in the future.

    Thank you for the well-wishes, sonsoftaurus. The killjoys over at customs probably would frown on my attempts to bring foreign dirt home with me.

    Admiral Drax, I am pretty fond of my wife. She is a gem, and I'd be quite lost without her.

  5. Dave Grossman rocks...I have been to several of his trainings and have read some of his stuff....Killology.com.