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  1. #7651
    Member Elendil's Heir's avatar
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    Nope, the Kerr books are not alt-history - here's the first in the series, which I just finished and is OK but not great, I'd say: https://www.amazon.com/March-Violets...by+philip+kerr

    Here are two terrific WWII alt-hist books, with different, chilling takes on a Nazi victory:

    https://www.amazon.com/Fatherland-No...ris+fatherland
    https://www.amazon.com/SS-GB-Nazi-Oc...deighton+ss-gb

  2. #7652
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    ... and yes, I can understand why tourists come to my city. Lots of cool stuff to do and see.

    TNP has been to Berlin.

  3. #7653
    Oliphaunt Rube E. Tewesday's avatar
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    Nah, still never been to Europe at all.

    TNP has been to Haiti.

  4. #7654
    Oliphaunt Jizzelbin's avatar
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    No. In fact, I think the only island I've been to is Vancouver Island (I think that's what it's called). Not counting islands inland (salt or fresh water), nor stops to change planes on island nations. Yeah, one single island thirty years ago is the only island I've been on. ETA oh, whoops. I seem to remember Manhattan is an island...well, those don't count as real islands IMHO — I'll call those "inland" islands. Oh, and Alcatraz. That's a real island. My memory is not working yet good this morning.

    TNP thinks, in North America, most people don't understand just how big the "great lakes" are, and is himself or herself sometimes surprised by some new facts learned about them.
    Last edited by Jizzelbin; 06 Dec 2018 at 10:49 AM.

  5. #7655
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    Definitely. All of the Great Lakes I've seen (and I've seen all but Huron and Superior, I think) are much bigger than you might think they are. You can't even see to the other side of Lake Pontchartrain, near New Orleans, and it's much smaller than any of the Great Lakes.

    TNP has been sailing on one of the Great Lakes.

  6. #7656
    Oliphaunt Jizzelbin's avatar
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    No, never sailing. Still I find it amusing that people are confused about the very idea of "going to the beach" at Lake Erie, for example.

    TNP is very confused by the mechanisms involved in sailing, but still persevered and will share his or her good fish stories.

  7. #7657
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    I've only sailed a few times, but did OK at it. My most memorable experience was sailing east, over the horizon, off the North Carolina coast once with my dad when I was a kid, and getting a bit worried that we'd end up in Portugal or something.

    TNP likes this tune: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m3t32DnKKvU

  8. #7658
    Oliphaunt Jizzelbin's avatar
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    Yes, indeed. I am on a slow connection, but the first thirty seconds made me think the tune might have been "Five Long Years" (Eddie Floyd IIRC). I don't think that was Ike on piano, but I liked the subtle homage to Otis Spann's runs in the bass register of the piano. Reminded me of how Johnnie Johnson would have played it. Not going to look up the personnel, but that was a nice way to wake up. OK, I did look up the tune: "Cold Day in Hell." I don't recognize the name of the piano player, but he really is hitting that old Chicago style.

    Good to hear a straight-ahead instrumental blues — good playing doesn't need the words IMHO to get across, even though I suspect the fellas in the band were just kind of having a bit of fun. It is still a bit disconcerting to hear the perfectly-tuned acoustic piano when the classic records always had a little something imperfect in the way the piano was tuned, but I can tell you it's a lot more fun to play on such an instrument even if it does sound a little clean. No, the piano player definitely put some grease in there, so no criticisms at all. In fact, if I were a bit younger and less convinced I was king shit, I'd try to copy some of those licks.

    TNP has a favorite of the multiple blues players whose last name was (or is) "King."

  9. #7659
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    Yes, B.B., and here's my favorite song of his: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0X1YI22T7W0

    TNP liked that tune, too.

  10. #7660
    Oliphaunt Jizzelbin's avatar
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    Sure. I appreciated hearing what was a new (to me) track from the blues boy. Not at all a regret hearing some good playing and singing.

    TNP thinks there are about two things every musician has to come to terms with at some point: the compositions and style of Monk, and getting down to NOLA style. As in those aren't optional. IMHO you can hear some of Louisiana in BB's playing, especially the laying back a bit on the beat.

  11. #7661
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    I don't know it personally, but have no reason to doubt it.

    TNP is about due for a non-Mardi Gras trip to Nawlins.

  12. #7662
    Oliphaunt Jizzelbin's avatar
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    No. I don't know anybody there and I'm pretty sure I'd get rolled while trying to drunkenly play music at some bar.

    TNP thinks the more interesting places of a nation or region to visit are its major ports.

  13. #7663
    Oliphaunt Rube E. Tewesday's avatar
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    Sounds about right.

    TNP has been to Nashville.

  14. #7664
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    Yes, a few years ago. Nice town. There's a lot more to it than country music.

    TNP still has some holiday shopping to do.

  15. #7665
    Oliphaunt Jizzelbin's avatar
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    Ha.. No. I don't want gifts, and I don't give them. Xmas should be celebrated, if at all, as a joyous exuberance, not any of this Santa Claus bullshit with the reindeers and crap. IF I had someone about whom I cared, I might have been preparing a gift, but probably only in the expectation of receiving the world's greatest beej because it was so awesome. I will be at mass, though, and look forward to being in a good disposition to receive the eucharist. None of my family will be there, but that doesn't diminish the community of the parish.

    TNP is somewhat consoled by the sorry state of the U.S. union that the E.U. is pretty much equally fucked. Or, to abstract in a juvenile way, the neighbors are doing it too, so it's not so bad as to waste time navel-gazing.

  16. #7666
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    Yeah, in a way, "misery loves company" applies to nations as well as it does to individuals.

    TNP would rather be POTUS than British PM right about now, if given the chance to replace either individual.

  17. #7667
    Oliphaunt Rube E. Tewesday's avatar
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    Oh, definitely, way more fun, way more job security.

    TNP is starting to feel winter carb cravings.

  18. #7668
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    Yes. A nice gooey grilled-cheese sandwich with three strips of bacon would be nice right about now. Oh, and a dill pickle on the side.

    That sounds good to TNP, too.

  19. #7669
    Oliphaunt Jizzelbin's avatar
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    Yeah, I'd eat that In fact, not too dissimilar from my meal after breaking a 48-hour fast yesterday: some burritos topped with cheese and slices of hard salami.

    TNP thinks the "vaping"/e-cig people probably get more shit because of the appearance of impropriety (gasp! "smoking" in public!) than any real concern. Think of the children!

  20. #7670
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    Yeah, probably. And it's just dumb.

    TNP has never been tempted to vape.

  21. #7671
    Oliphaunt Jizzelbin's avatar
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    False. I found a Juul e-cigarette in the drying machine at my neighborhood and was tempted to buy a cheap charger for it and a few cartridges, but it does have a lot of complications about which I'm uninterested — I suppose it's like a hobby for some people. But I've used the Nicorette inhaler in the past, as well as the gums.

    I don't think it's childish, but it does seem to suggest people wanting to be "special" rather than just smoking a pipe/cigar, which I consider a bit childish, although not dumb.

    TNP will name other common activities he or she considers "dumb."

  22. #7672
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    Well, it's just my opinion, but: line-dancing, macrame, curling and collecting bottle caps, off the top of my head. But if you love to do any of those things, or love someone who does, bless you!

    TNP has done one of those four things.

  23. #7673
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    No, but I know a lot of curlers, being from Canada, and they have fun.

    TNP has at least one hobby.

  24. #7674
    Oliphaunt Jizzelbin's avatar
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    True: I think drinking wine out of boxes and "looking at" pornography count as hobbies. Then again as our friend Norman Bates remarked, "A hobby is supposed to pass the time, not fill it."

    TNP can't wait until the "holidays" (say, from now through New Year's) is to have been over.

  25. #7675
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    No, I'm enjoying them so far, and there's a lot more to come. Life is good.

    TNP wants to go to Antarctica someday.

  26. #7676
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    Yes. My dream "gig" is to go do some IT technical stuff in Antarctica FWICT, it's pretty chill down there. Sort of like working in a warehouse, except the women have no choice but to abide by one's crude flirtations, provided those advances are reasonable and reasonably subtle.

    TNP thinks "don't frighten the women" is a pretty good motto to live by.

  27. #7677
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    One of them, yes. Along with "treat others as you would be treated," "leave the world a better place than you found it," and "be an informed citizen."

    TNP has lived in at least three cities with more than 100,000 population.

  28. #7678
    Oliphaunt Jizzelbin's avatar
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    Sure. I think I've gone as low as maybe 80,000 people (Missoula, MT was about that IIRC), and when growing up, it wasn't really a city, but whatever it was, it was way below that. For above 100K, I guess exactly four cities lived in for at least a year. Current town well above that, but IMHO it's more of a cow town than a city, but that's the facts.

    TNP has never owned a pair of steel-toed boots.

  29. #7679
    Oliphaunt Rube E. Tewesday's avatar
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    False, used to be my footwear of choice growing up on the farm.

    TNP has worked minimum wage jobs.

  30. #7680
    Oliphaunt Jizzelbin's avatar
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    Of course. Some of them I was even pretty good at, namely because I was too young to know better.

    TNP doesn't mind the idea of doing piece-work (picking fruit, doing little contract work, or being self-employed in general), and in fact prefers it to drawing a salary.

  31. #7681
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    No, never done it, and not particularly interested in doing so.

    TNP needs to do some more holiday decorating around the house.

  32. #7682
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    Negative. There is none to be done.

    TNP thinks that learning and playing (not note-for-note, but the general idea) Bill Evans' "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town" might make it possible to placate the family on Christmas Eve.

  33. #7683
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    Sure, why not? Reminds me a bit of the Charlie Brown Christmas jazz.

    TNP is a Peanuts fan.

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