Tuesday, May 31, 2011
The World of Tomorrow- edited!
I've had some trouble finding a steady supply of cassingles lately and thought it might be time to upgrade my Walkman to something a bit more convenient. I was very surprised to discover that Apple computers was still in business and sells a Walkman-like device!
Older readers may remember Apple from back in the 1980's. They had a popular advertising on TV and flourished briefly before being swamped by Windows. I had always assumed they had just gone out of business but it seems as though they have struggled onwards by manufacturing music players! I picked up one of these "I-Pods" and fooled around with it a few weekends ago.
I was excited to find that not only can I play my Taylor Dayne and Howard Jones songs but I can also listen to internet broadcasts called Podcasts (which is probably why Apple called their product an I-Pod, kind of riding on the coat-tails...). For gaming purposes I've hit upon Meeples and Miniatures. While most gamers are probably aware of this podcast it's worth mentioning just in case.
Meeples and Miniatures is a series of gaming related podcasts produced by a British fellow named Neil Shuck. He reviews games, talks about his gaming experiences, and discusses the state of the gaming hobby. On occasion he has interviews or guests on the show. Put briefly the podcast is a great source of information regarding the hobby. But there's more to love.
For one, the show is a great chance to listen to British men call each other mates and chaps. I think gaming shines as a social activity and it shines the brightest when it's done with mates and good chaps. The American "dude" just doesn't compare.
Secondly the show is a great source of affirmation. Feeling silly about your insanely huge game or miniature collection? You will feel like a frugal miser when you hear about Neil and his friend's collections- thanks Neil!
Finally, many of the episodes are thought provoking or even heartbreaking. In one episode the two men talk about their inspirations for gaming. They both relate how their dad's built them gaming terrain and equipment by hand. Then they describe specific pieces- certain model planes or a model airfield. Now as a parent you wonder if the things you do for your kids make any impact. How moving to hear how in these men's lives their father's handicrafts remain treasured some fifty years later! Then the bomb drops- editor Henry Hyde's father died when he was eleven. While his father never got a chance to give a speech at his wedding or share a beer on some summer evening, his love will be forever manifest in the things he made for his young son as he shared his bobby! Man, I tear up just thinking about that. Folks- the pastime we enjoy is absolutely a family hobby and whether we're playing boardgames or crafting miniatures or both we can and should involve the kids and share our interests.
That last came from the View From the Veranda episode number three. Look for it and then range through the other episodes for more interesting conversations, news, and gossip.