Monday, November 25, 2019

Another week begins, so we might as well get to it. We’ll start off slow, since I really wasn’t able to pay much attention today. I do want to start the move to a M-W-F schedule for the News, but today ain’t it.

Part of what was so distracting today was my brother and his wife headed back to Oregon this afternoon. They lit of for Memphis around noon, and since we haven’t heard anything to the contrary, I can only assume they’ve made it to Minneapolis for the layover with little or no shenanigans. I don’t know what it is, but my brother attracts shenanigans when travelling by airplane like the Grand Ole Opry attracts sequins, while for the most part, all my flights usually go off without a hitch and ahead of schedule.

Regardless, they’re headed back and it was a good visit. Probably the best group visit since Daddy died. Momma put together a phenomenal Early Thanksgiving dinner and we generally had fun sharing each others’ company. After the bowl with the banana pudding was scraped clean, we all stayed around the table and talked, something we never do, and did plenty of laughing. And Momma managed to talk about Daddy at length without tearing up, maybe the first time since he died. There is something to the healing hands of time, I suppose.

Partly out of whim and partly because it’s half off, I used some of my remaining Steam Card money, I picked up American Fugitive today. Developed by Fallen Tree Games and published by Curve Digital, I’d had my eye on it since it came out in May, as always, waiting for a sale. I’ve played a couple Curve games, but nothing had grabbed me by the short ‘n’ curlies just yet. It’s been compared favorably to the first two Grand Theft Auto games and the Chinatown Wars installment, none of which I’ve ever played, so I’m going in blind on this. But I like the premise a lot – country boy falsely blamed for his father’s murder so he has to wreck up the redneck county cops to prove his innocence – and it seems like a lot of fun. Plus, another indie game to support, always a good thing.

Speaking of games, I spent a little time with Helldorado, the third game in the Western-theme turn-based strategy games Desperados (sic). Another one I missed out on the first time around, the games didn’t work worth a damn on modern computers until THQ Nordic picked up the IP and straightened shit out. Another XCOM-like, this one plays a lot like Hard West but without the supernatural trappings.

This is just a straight-up shit-kicker cowboy story, like one that might’ve stared James Garner. Matter of fact, it tap dances just on the edge of being completely devoured by the cliches in which it indulges. It’s not Dead Wood hard cowboy, more like the movie Silverado. Your characters – from a cowboy to a dance-hall girl gambler to a big Mexican guy, among others – each have different abilities and ways to defeat the bad guys. You’re better of avoiding combat as much as possible, which sort of fits when the main cowboy’s characterization of being a sneaky bastard.

All in all, while not as absorbing as XCOM or even Hard West, it and the other two games in the Desperado series are a lot of fun and worth the (reduced) price on Steam or GOG. THQ Nordic is actually doing something with the property as Desperados III is schedule a release for this year. It’s almost the end of November, so I’m saying they’re not going to hit it but I am cynical. I’m looking forward to it one way or another.

Since the company’s gone, I can get back into the Deathless series and continue on with Vampires Don’t Sparkle. I said yesterday that it was dragging a bit, but that’s not fair. It’s getting another “chapter” of the overall story started. That takes time and that’s what it’s doing. I broke the two-third point this afternoon at the gym and it’s moving along quite nicely.

Okay, then, time for the News, I guess. We’re all still reeling from last weeks’ Impeachment bombshells and gearing up for the next phase of the process. In a nutshell, Trump is being accused of withholding nearly $400 in military aid for Ukraine – currently caught up in a conflict with Russia and in desperate need of the bread – to force the country to investigate Hunter Biden, an official with Burmisa Holdings.

The company had dealings that Republicans claim were dirty but have no real solid proof or even solid innuendo. The general consensus from everyone who isn’t a Republican, this has less to do with corruption in Ukraine that Trump claims to want to fight – something else no one but the cult and lackeys swallow – and more to do with digging up dirt on Joe Biden in front of his run for the 2020 Democratic nomination for President. It’s interesting that Trump is throwing all his cards on the table to sink Biden who, while holding strong numbers across the board (and particularly with African American voters, as opposed to any other candidate), doesn’t exactly light the electorate on fire, but anyhow.

For the most part, things go to the House Intelligence Committee and Rep. Adam Schiff – who’s leading the Democratic charge for Trump’s ass – says they might have everything wrapped up by Christmas at the latest, maybe Thanksgiving. I’ve heard some of the soi-disant political experts have said it would do better to draw things out until after the New Year to put Trump on uneven fitting, but I’m not the one to say what Shiff is pulling here. I wouldn’t be surprised if they’re not trying to rattle Trump in some way, which is an incredibly easy thing to do, admittedly. He does it to himself most days.

Some more witnesses may be called, and indeed the U.S. Supreme Court has laid the law down for former White House counsel Don McGahn. Previously, he’d refused the subpoena like most of Trump’s willing thralls, but I guess that’s all for that. Another name that has come up is erstwhile National Security Adviser and total monster John Bolton, who’s resurfaced on Twitter and trying to get someone, anyone, to donate to his PAC. Schiff is pushing for it and Bolton was told by The Boss not to snitch, but time will tell.

As for their part, most of the toadies who kept Trump’s pants steam pressed and his shoes tongue bathed before Impeachment began and still washing the dirt out of their mouths for the next round. Spineless hack Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is indulging in the already debunked Hunter Biden nonsense, all the while bemoaning how his “friendship” with Joe isn’t enough to stay his hand. The poor, noble soul, he’s tied up and swallowed by politics, donchewsee. Well, I’ll give him credit for cutting the bullshit there, but he’s still trying to set himself up as having no recourse, just in case things go south. He is a politician, after all, first and foremost.

And human doorknob Rick Perry, who Trump initially blamed for the whole Ukraine kerfluffle in the first place, said Trump was “chosen by God” and that apparently means something. To be fair, the outgoing Energy Secretary said all presidents were “chosen by God,” even Obama, and that still apparently means something. I’ve said before, I’m no believer but I can’t help but think the Lord of All Creation has weightier things on his mind than this. In any event, I was always taught God gives us strength to endure but doesn’t make the decisions for us. Those wacky Evangelicals and their Flabby Orange Idol, I guess.

Okay, that’s good. Got some more medicine, and it should do me for a while. Tomorrow we see the Psyche Doc and see how all that goes. And that is that for now.

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