Eternal Sunshine #111

April 2016

By Douglas Kent 911 Irene Drive, Mesquite, TX  75149

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Welcome to the latest issue of Eternal Sunshine, the only Diplomacy zine that has subzines from Richard Weiss, Jim Burgess, AND Jack McHugh.  Look it up, you won’t find another.  Google it, use or whatever phone app you choose.  This is the only one.


Wee wow…


I don’t have a lot to say this month.  I spent the last four weeks in constant anxiety as I dealt with the Feds on my restitution payments.  After ten years they decided it was time to check in and see how much more I could afford to pay every month.  As it turned out, they feel the fact that Heather and I live beneath our means and save money when we can is a good reason to demand a bulk payment of nearly everything I’ve saved over the last seven years AND increased monthly payments.  But I’m not really complaining, because it COULD have been worse.  This was actually them cutting us a little break.  So if you feel bad about it, check out my eBay store link above and see if there are any collectible books you’d be interested in.  We’re starting our savings all over at this point J. 


I’m offering a game of Civilization, which will either be by hand or with everybody using the computer version (that is now “abandonware” so I can give you a copy.  It will run using Dosbox which is a good program for old computer games).  If you want to play just let me know, and tell me if you’re willing to play by hand, using the computer version, or either.


I’d also really like to get the new Diplomacy game filled.  It is a lot closer.  Modern Dip needs at least one new signup this month or I am dropping it.  I think By Popular Demand will end after this game (which is about to do its final round) because participation has been dropping steadily.  If you guys want it back let me know.


I went to an introductory class on Transcendental Meditation last weekend.  If any of you have personal experiences with TM I’m interested in hearing about them.


Other than that, here’s a little something I wrote the other day when I was trying to make progress on the Mara memoir.  See you next month!

I’ve been meaning to dig through some old letters and photos for a number of weeks, but we had changed where they were being stored a few times and I just couldn’t be sure how to find them.


Today Heather dug them out; they were in the huge tote holing all of the letters I’d sent her while I was in prison ten years ago.  She has saved every letter and every card.  Some she kept for the sake of romance, some because of the emotions they evoke, and others because they remind her of things she has forgotten over the years.


On top of all of that material – an average of 80 pages of letters a week – was the stuff I wanted to find: the letters and photos I had brought home with me or had sent back to Heather occasionally for safekeeping.  There were some things I thought I’d kept which were missing, and other things I forgot I kept which I still have.


There is such a varied range of emotions that flood my mind and my heart going through that stuff.  I have almost all of the letters my friend and former boss Patty sent me.  She would decorate them with stickers, talk about her kids, bitch about her ex-husband, and remind me of the crazy company we’d worked for.  There’s a stretch of time where she stops writing, until one of her sisters finally sent me a letter to inform me that Patty was in the hospital and not expected to live.  It seems her occasional diet of Jack and coke had become her sole source of nutrition, until her body completely collapsed.


She didn’t die, if you’re wondering.  She pulled through.  I saw her a few more times after 2006 when I came home.  She was thin and had stopped working, but was doing fine financially thanks to her share of the company she still owned.  She wasn’t great at communication, but I kept up the best I could.  We’d send her birthday cards, Christmas cards, and St. Patrick’s Day cards…along with gifts.  It didn’t really bother me that she never said thank you.  Just as well, since it turned out she HAD died a year or two after my return and nobody bothered to tell us.  It took like two or three years of letters, cards and gifts before her ex-husband (who was now living in her old house with the kids) found the “time” to let us know. Thanks a lot, Craig.


There were other things I didn’t want to brood over right then, especially the last letters I got from my father where he was barely able to write (a few included “translations” from his wife Barbara at the bottom in case I couldn’t make them out).  I know I haven’t properly grieved over his death yet.  I will, one of these days.  Maybe.


But what I was really looking for was material relating to my first wife Mara.  Supposedly I’m working on a memoir about our relationship and her struggles with mental and physical illness, but I haven’t gotten that much done yet.  I thought these letters, along with the High School ones I still have, might inspire me to be more productive.


So I sat and read the two or three letters.  She had started working for a temp agency, which was a big step for her; it was her first job since she’d gone on disability a decade earlier.  The first letter was filled with questions.  How was my first day?  What was life like in prison?  There were also some memories, some inside jokes only the two of us understood.  When you’re with someone for a long time you develop a private language, similar to the way some twins do.  There’s logic behind it, and if you needed to you could explain the step by step process of how each phrase was created.  But they wouldn’t be interesting to most people; they meant something to us because we lived them, and they’d grown naturally from our lives and experiences.


When you lose that person, you lose that language and those jokes.  They’re still in your brain but you can’t share them.  They’re only important to you; explaining them is like trying to explain a dream, leaving the listener bored and confused.


Mara’s second letter – the last one – was heavier on the negatives.  The job was boring.  The hassle of riding a bus for an hour each way to pick up her paycheck was a complete pain in the ass…she’d finish work at 1pm but not get home until 8pm on pay days.  She filled the pages with things like that, but threw in some laments.  Like how much she missed one of the cats we’d had who died.  And how we were meant to win the lottery “that one time” and everything in life would have been different (we’d missed by two close numbers, like we had 26 and 34 but it was 24 and 36).


Then she talked about how her parents had moved to Florida (which is where she was living) and she’d have to go see them for Thanksgiving.  She didn’t want to go but if she didn’t they’d be concerned and think she was going to try suicide again.  Which, she admitted, she had been thinking about recently.  She’d even told her husband that if he wanted to do it she was willing.  The only thing that was stopping her was the fear of surviving like she had before.  That would mean hospitals, therapy, losing her job…just more reasons for her to be unhappy.


I couldn’t help but think about how she’d told me a few months after our marriage that if I ever wanted a divorce just let her know and she’d kill herself.  It wasn’t a threat or a cry for help, but a statement of fact.  She said I was the only reason she had to live (the cats being a second reason but not big enough to keep her there).  Now she was sounding the same all over again.  I couldn’t call her and I had no way to contact anybody in her family (not that they would have listened; Mara was always my problem and my fault in their eyes).


I tried to console myself with her closing the letter by mentioning that I shouldn’t worry; she would tell me before she did that if she decided to, and she’d leave me a note.  So it wasn’t like she was committed to the idea.  I remember crying in my bunk that night, because I’d made our relationship my life goal.  I knew she was crazy, I knew she was miserable, but I was going to do whatever it took to give her reasons to live and to laugh and to be happy.  I was going to save her, and if I had to be a martyr to the cause so be it.  But I’d failed.  After her suicide attempt in 1998 I had given up.  While I tried to get the drive again and had always remained her friend and supporter, I hadn’t succeeded.  Now she was remarried and she sounded nearly as miserable as before.


I really felt like I was her only friend in the world besides her husband.  She was telling me little things in these two letters that you’d share with someone at the end of the day, but I don’t think she had anyone to share them with.  A rainbow she saw, or the outrageous way some of the forms she was filing had been filled out.  And it seemed just corresponding with me was causing additional stress in her marriage, as Stephen kept knocking my first letter out of her hands and saying “I am your husband now, not him.”


Along with those letters I found the obituary Heather had printed off the internet for me.  Mara and her husband had died together on December 11, 2003 “from complications of life.”  Sometimes it’s okay, but other times I still list it as a failure on my part.


And I know I haven’t grieved properly for her death, either.  Maybe writing the rest of the memoir will help, or maybe I’ll finish it and decide nobody in the world would be interested in the contents but me.  Then again, I didn’t think anybody would want to read my first memoir either.


I guess I’ll have to finish it to find out.  That is still my plan.


Hypothetical of the Month



Last month we gave you the following questions:


#1 – You are planning to quit your job in five months when your company promotes you to a high paying management position.  You still intend to quit.  Do you tell your boss now, or accept the promotion and take the extra pay until you quit?


Andy York - If I've planned out that I'm quitting at a defined point in the future, as I have with a number of my previous jobs, they would know when I decided so it would be a known factor to them before giving the

promotion. If, for some reason, I hadn't made the decision when the promotion came through, I'd certainly tell them and give them the opportunity to give the position to someone else who would have a longer tenure with them. Of course, getting the promotion may change my mind about moving.....


Andy Lischett - This depends. If I were not afraid of losing my current job upon telling my boss that I would be quitting in five months, I would tell him. But if I needed the current job and thought that my boss might fire me, I would not tell him. However, if possible, I would turn down the promotion and let my boss promote or hire someone else.


John David Galt - I would reconsider (now) my decision to quit in 5 months.  If I'm still determined to quit, I will tell the boss that and ask if he still wants to promote me.  But if I decide to stay or I'm undecided, I'll go ahead and take the promotion.


Jack McHugh - Super easy--take the promotion and tell them nothing--its none of their goddamned business--I've been laid off enough times with no notice to do this several times without losing any sleep.


Rick Desper - No idea.  It would depend on too many things.


#2 – You are playing Texas Hold’ em for money with five other people, only one of whom you casually know.  You and another player (not the one you know personally) are raising each other for the biggest pot of the night when you accidentally see his cards.  Do you tell him?


Andy Lischett – No, I don't tell the other guy that I saw his cards. Or… if he has a better hand than I do I might say, "You know, I just accidentally saw your pair of Jacks. I raise you $20."


John David Galt - No.  It is an accepted part of poker that if you accidentally let another player see your cards, it's your problem.  This is even true in bridge (which strictly limits communication between partners).  If I had

*tried* to see his cards, or leaned into his private space, that would be a different matter.


If I were teaching a kid, that would also be a different matter, but in that place we'd be playing for nothing or pieces of candy.


Jack McHugh - No, it’s your job as a player to keep your hand hidden....if you can't, too bad for you...


Rick Desper - No.  Protecting cards is part of the game.


For Next Month (For the time being, I am often selecting questions from the game “A Question of Scruples” which was published in 1984 by High Games Enterprises).  Remember you can make your answers as detailed as you wish..but “this could never happen” is a cop out answer:



The Dining Dead -
The Eternal Sunshine Movie Reviews


For the time being I am reserving this section for exceptional films, or films we see in theaters.  I will also mention films that I backed on Kickstarter or other places, once I get to see them, and films made by some of my friends or acquaintances.  So some months there will be no Dining Dead section.


Kickstarter Film Review – Lake Eerie: The latest film on my list of supported projects on Kickstarter, Lake Eerie is less horror and more a mixture of suspense and sci-fi.  It was written by Meredith Majors (who also stars) and directed by Chris Majors (the duo is currently working on a new film, Echo of Evil).


The plot of Lake Eerie is in some ways slow to develop, but a lot of that has to do with the deliberate choice to reveal things sparsely rather than poor pacing.  Kate Ryan (Meredith Majors) is recovering from some personal losses and crisis and has moved from Idaho to the shores of Lake Erie for a new start.  She chooses an old house, including all the aged furnishings and belongings of the prior owner.  Although it has been taken care of, the home has been unoccupied since the 60’s.  Soon she learns the prior owner was an archeologist who was investigating some curious artifacts.  And quickly strange things begin to happen, leaving Kate to try and decide if her mental instability is rearing its ugly head, or if she is being confronted with forces she cannot explain.


The real gem in this film is without question Betsy Baker, who plays nosy and eccentric neighbor Eliza.  Horror fans might recognize Betsy’s name, but if you don’t, her most famous role was as Ash’s girlfriend Linda in the original Evil Dead.  Even to this day fans encourage her to thrill them with her “We’re gonna get you, we’re gonna get you, not another peep, time to go to sleep” chant.  In Lake Eerie, Baker is a tour de force, savoring her scenes the way a wine aficionado enjoys a rare vintage.  It helps that she and Meredith Majors have very good on-screen chemistry, dancing between friendly banter and strained frustration.


The great Lance Henriksen makes an appearance as Kate’s father, left back at the Idaho farm and worried about the well-being of his troubled daughter.  He doesn’t get a lot of screen time, which is a disappointment.  Henriksen is in many ways a next-generation Peter Cushing: he can play a range of characters and no matter how goofy the dialogue he might be given it sounds believable and powerful when it comes out of his mouth. 


If I have quibbles with Lake Eerie, the first is in some of the supporting cast.  Anne Leigh Cooper as Eliza’s niece Autumn has to jump between excited, upbeat college kid to serious researcher and she never really finds a comfortable middle ground between the two.  Ben Furney, in his scenes as Kate’s former husband, seems like oil to Kate’s water; they simply don’t carry any believable emotion as a loving couple. 


My other complaint would be the resolution of the story.  Admittedly a portion of this is because they wanted to leave an opening for a possible sequel.  So I can allow a partial pass for that transgression.  Obviously I can’t give you a lot of detail, because I want to avoid any possible spoilers. 


Lake Eerie isn’t Hellraiser or Poltergeist quality, but it didn’t have the budget or commercial backing for that kind of punch.  But it is enjoyable, so if you get a chance to pick up the DVD or watch it on Amazon Video or some other On-Demand service I say go ahead.


Oh, and Victoria Johnstone as “The Countess” can visit my nightmares anytime.


Film Review – Flesh for the Inferno: Flesh for the Inferno is the latest film from Scorpio Film Releasing and the wonderful director Richard Griffin.  Teaming up with screenwriter Michael Varrati again (The Sins of Dracula) and many of the terrific Scorpio Films regulars, I expected more of the usual comedy horror the troupe has entertained us with for years. 


Only a few minutes in I was reminded that just as often Griffin has chosen to play it straight, with movies like Normal and Exhumed.  Flesh for the Inferno is more of a cross between the two; some 80’s-style horror combined with the well-timed sarcasm and humor that elevate Scorpio Films from some of the other independent horror flicks out there.  In the process, we get a tip of the hat to such varied chillers as A Cask of Amontillado and the original Evil Dead. 


As is often the case, they waste no time and jump right into the fun.  The great Michael Thurber brings his Catholic youth group to a run-down Catholic school, which years earlier had been the scene of both molestations and the cruel murder of a group of nuns.  The teens are there to clean up some of the mess before construction crews arrive on a future date to begin renovations.  Little do they know they are soon to encounter the vengeful nuns, who have pledged their souls to Satan in exchange for revenge.


Many of the Scorpio regulars appear. Jamie Lyn Bagley is Meredith, an over-pious snide group leader.  Jamie Dufault is Noah, Michael Thurber’s nephew who happened to visit during church group weekend; lucky him.  We even get appearances from Sarah Nicklin as a soap-opera-obsessed prostitute and Aaron Andrade as…well, as a rather evil individual.


The real powerhouse in this movie is Anna Rizzo as Kat.  Granted, she gets some of the meatier scenes and best lines, but if she couldn’t handle them they’d be wasted.  She quickly jumps back and forth between terror and sarcasm with ease.  Jamie Lyn Bagley’s character also is fun to watch, and Michael Thurber beings the skills he always does.  Thurber is truly a talent; whether he’s playing Dr. Frankenstein, Dracula, or a role that requires more nuances he always seems to hit the nail on the head.  Here he walks the tightrope of friendly, upbeat, pious and throws in just a hint of uncomfortable creepiness.  Too much of any of these ingredients would cause him to lose his balance and fall to the ground below, but as always he crosses safely.  Scorpio is lucky to have him.


The effects are much gorier than many of Griffin’s films, and rather well done.  I found the possessed character who bashed its head over and over into a window until the entire face was flattened to be deliciously gruesome and disturbing.  Something else that happens with that body soon afterwards confirmed my suspicion that it may have been homage to The Evil Dead. 


There are some of the usual running jokes I’ve grown to expect and enjoy in most of Griffin’s films.  There’s a gag about whether one of the characters is gay, another about whether people are REALLY sure a corpse was dead, and there’s a character who spends half his time assuming every female wants to have sex with him and the other half fascinated with banging pots and pans together in the kitchen.  Varrati keeps the humor tight and intelligent, but not to the point of taking himself (or the characters) too seriously. 


Richard Griffin has managed to avoid the trap he set for himself when he built his reputation from early successes like Pretty Dead Things and the masterpiece Disco Exorcist.  Instead of going Troma and making every film formulaic, he continues to vary his choices and experiment with different flavors.  Like a great wine or a delicate perfume, his films have a variety of aromas and ingredients.  He has his favorites which help identify his signature, but even they can be moved around to a new level within the finished product.  I look forward to the upcoming Accidental Incest and Seven Dorms of Death to see what new concoctions he has cooked up.



Meet Me In Montauk
The Eternal Sunshine Letter Column


Andy Lischett - First, a correction on one of last month's hypotheticals related to Tom Howell's statement that an ophthalmologist diagnosing heart problems sounds like a quack. My hypo incorrectly said that my brother's ophthalmologist predicted a stroke, when in fact the doctor told my brother during his eye exam that he was having a stroke and sent him immediately to the hospital emergency room a block away. He did have a blood clot and was having a stroke. My apologies for messing up the question.


Jack McHugh – My hypotheticals from last month.  #1 - No...and I don't follow up with Medicare.  Tom Howell is wrong...they examine my eyes everytime I get an examine for enlarged blood vessels as a pre-cursor to heart issues.  #2 - Its New York--I tell the morons to keep moving since it is a moving walkway...and move them out of my way and I don't risk damage a perfectly good tennis racket on them...

The Best Albums in History - By Decade


The 1960’s or 1970’s – Any Leftovers


Rick Desper - Decided to resolve my Beatles issue by simply including three of their albums to represent the '60s


Sgt, Pepper's Lonely Hearts' Club Band

Abbey Road


Apparently Let it Be was released in the '70s and I already have 10 for that decade. 

Instead, let's throw in both Rubber Soul and Revolver.  At least I can say I've listened to those two albums a lot.


So I've gone from zero Beatles' albums to four just like that.  I feel that's a good decision.


Howard Bishop - 1960's batch 2


6. Are You Experienced - Jimi Hendrix

7. Hot Rats - Frank Zappa

8. A Love Supreme - John Coltrane

9. Velvet Underground & Nico - Velvet Underground

10. Highway 61 Revisited - Bob Dylan


Here are my picks for the 70's


1. Led Zeppelin III - Led Zeppelin

2. Rocks - Aerosmith

3. Rattus Norvegicus - The Stranglers

4. After The Gold Rush - Neil Young

5. Irish Tour '74 - Rory Gallagher

6. Secret Treaties - Blue Oyster Cult

7. Clear Spot - Captain Beefheart

8. Rocket To Russia - Ramones

9. Red - King Crimson

10. Space Ritual - Hawkwind


Bubbling under ....

Solid Air - John Martyn

Pink Flag - Wire

Stormcock - Roy Harper

Dog And Butterfly - Heart

Teaser - Tommy Bolin

Marquee Moon - Television

Dub Housing - Pere Ubu

Fun House - The Stooges

Blue - Joni Mitchell

Horses - Patti Smith


The 1980’s – Second Set of Five


Doug Kent - Tom Petty - Full Moon Fever

Guns N' Roses - Appetite for Destruction

Cyndi Lauper - She's So Unusual

Journey - Escape

Yes – 90125


Jon Kent - 1. Tribute - Randy Rhodes, Ozzy Osbourne

 I was a block away when I heard a neighbor was blasting this album outside. The guitar solo stopped me in my tracks.


2. World Wide Live - Scorpions

I'm a big fan of live albums in general, even knowing that 75% or more is recorded or retouched in the studio. This one cost $0.01 from Columbia House. I swear the $64 is in the mail!  [[Richard Sloane wants you…]]


3. Creatures of the Night - Kiss

When Kiss decided to stop being P$#@ssies.


4. Powerslave - Iron Maiden

Just incredible. My first time hearing IM at a crazy friends house during a keg party. He saw me playing guitar and said "If you can play that, you can play this!" He sat me down and made me learn all 13 Mins 45 Secs of Rime of the Ancient Mariner on his Jazz Precision Bass.


5. Ride the Lightning - Metallica

Call of Ktulu, Ride the Lighting Fade to Black - a masterpiece, considering Lars hadn't yet taken his first drum lesson.


Andy Lischett - As explained earlier I'm not big on the '80s or later. Not that the music wasn't good, it's just that I mostly stopped listening to new stuff after college. I read everyone else's first five, but found no inspiration. I'm surprised that no one has picked Thriller. It's no doubt a better album than some of my picks, but not my taste. Anyway (in no particular order) ...


Bad to the Bone -  George Thorogood. I've never heard the album, just the title song which is about as close to blues as I want to get. The context of music means a lot, and the first time I heard Bad to the Bone was the opening scene of the movie Christine.


Crazy from the Heat - David Lee Roth. Wikipedea says this is an EP. Do Eps count?


Eliminator - ZZ Top. I bought this CD at a garage sale for 50 cents, mostly for the picture of the '32 Ford. Best song is Sharp Dressed Man.


Riptide - Robert Palmer. Addicted to Love is a great song with a great video and terrific lyrics. "Your heart sweats, Your teeth grind!"


Beauty and the Beat - The Go-Go's.


That wraps up the 1980s. The '90s are going to be bleak.


Steve Cooley - Full Moon Fever, Tom Petty

The River, Springsteen

Making Movies, Dire Straits

The Joshua Tree, U2

Get Happy!, Elvis Costello and the Attractions [[as Steve submitted an extra I randomly selected this title to remove from his official list]]

Life's Rich Pageant, REM


Joshua Danker-Dake - Bride, “Live to Die”


Helloween, “Walls of Jericho”


Helloween, “Keeper of the Seven Keys: Part I”


Helloween, “Keeper of the Seven Keys: Part II”


Manowar, “Fighting the World”


Larry Peery - Ricard Muti and the CSO Orchestra and Chorus, Verdi’s Requiem


Robert Shaw and the Atlanta SO and Chorus, Berlioz’s Requiem.


Neville Marriner and the Ambroisian Opera Chorus & and the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, Amadeus


George Solti and the CSO for Brahms’ Four Symphonies.


Paul Simon: Graceland


Riccardo Muti, conductor; Duain Wolfe, chorus master; Christopher Alder, producer; David Frost, Tom Lazarus & Christopher Willis, engineers/mixers; Silas Brown, mastering engineer, for Verdi: Requiem (performed by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and Chicago Symphony Chorus)


These selections show how completely the CSO dominated classical music recording in the 1980s; whether under Solti, Muti or whomever. The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Chorus were not quite top-notch but very close --- again because of the conductor, Robert Shaw.


I’ve always been fascinated by the Requiem as a musical form (after all it is the oldest form of liturgical music that has been continuously composed and performed for the last 2,000 years) and once one gets past The Big Four (Verdi, Berlioz, Brahms and Mozart) there’s a huge amount of literature to explore on disc or CD. I must have a dozen recordings of the Verdi, second only to Don Giovanni I think, dating back to the 1920s. Each is different. The same applies to the Berlioz. I used to take a copy along and use the Tuba Mirum section to test out my friends’ new stereos. If it didn’t rock the house it wasn’t a very good stereo. For some reason the French recordings of  the Berlioz are usually the best. I heard a performance of the Berlioz at Les Invalides in Paris, complete with light show, that put a permanent curl to my hair, that I’ll never forget.


The Solti Brahms  Symphonies were and are some of my favorites, especially the First and Fourth; and Solti’s the perfect conductor working with a first-rate orchestra to bring out their richness and color. As I said fifty years and (and I see no reason to change my opinion), “Brahms was no Beethoven, but his music has more meat on its bones.”


It’s been so long but I still remember the impact the movie Amadeus had. I have two or three copies of the soundtrack, a short one and two of the two LP version. I still pull it out when I need a Mozart fix. When the music starts my memory of the film turns on. Perhaps Disney’s Fantasia is the only other movie classical soundtrack that does that to me, although Clockwork Orange comes close. I remember being in London in 1988 and going over to the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields. I was crushed to discover they were shut down for the summer holidays. I made up for it by joining the Queen Mum for a concert by the choristers of St. Paul; which was also thoroughly enjoyable.


At the time Paul Simon’s Graceland made me want to get up and dance. It sort of introduced me to African music and for that I’m grateful. It was also good to see Simon doing well on his own without Garfunkel.


Paul Kent – Alan Holdsworth, Secrets

David Sylvian, gone to earth

David Sylvian, Secrets of the beehive

Michael Brecker, don't try this at home

King Crimson, beat

Peter Gabriel, 3

Peter Gabriel, security

Japan, gentleman take Polaroids

Japan, tin drum

REM, document


Honorable mentions include Alan Holdsworth, IOU…XTC, Skylarking…XTC, Oranges and Lemons.




The Cabaret Voltaire opened in Zürich on 5/2, 1916, i. e. a hundred years ago. It was the birthplace of Dada. Reason enough to include the Cabs in the list of Best Albums of All Time in Eternal Sunshine.


1986 pete shelley: heaven & the sea


Pete Shelley is the singer of Buzzcocks (see Harris' list). He made also three solo albums, of which "Heaven & the Sea" was the last. The sleeve contains an interesting quote by Chuang Tzu:

Alas! - Noble music leaves villagers indifferent, whereas a trivial song easily makes them swoon. Likewise, elevated thoughts do not enter minds stuffed with common ideas. The noise of two earthenware drums drowns the sound of a bronze bell. How could I make the fools who populate the empire listen to me?


1987 Siouxsie and the Banshees: Through the Looking Glass


This record has got cover versions of a few of my favorite songs, e. g. THIS TOWN AIN'T BIG ENOUGH FOR BOTH OF US and SEA BREEZES. "She Cracked" was a bonus track on the reissue. Most of the songs are better than the originals.


1988 Chrome: Alien Soundtracks II


This is quite different from the first Alien Soundtracks with its evil, compressed aggro-sound. But the sci-fi lyrics are still there. Both Soundtracks were later issued by Dossier on one CD.


1989 The Cure: Disintegration


The second part of the THE CURE TRILOGY. Robert Smith wanted to play the trilogy in a city that fit best to the sound of The Cure. Ber and War made it on the shortlist, with Berlin being chosen in the end.


Roger Cox - Journeyman (Clapton), Back in Black (ACDC), Milk and Honey (Lennon:  I liked "Nobody Told Me" better than either hit from Double Fantasy), About Face (Gilmour), Joshua Tree (U2).


Rick Desper - Michael Jackson - Thriller

Disco died but lived on for a while in this album.  Peak Michael Jackson/Quincy Jones.


Paul Simon - Graceland

Probably not as important as the S&G stuff but a very enjoyable international album.


Shriekback - Oil & Gold

My favorite album of the time.  Most bands aren't willing to sing about parthenogenesis. 


John Lennon & Yoko Ono  - Double Fantasy

Thanks for remiinding me this was released in 1980 so I could sneak it in here.


U2 - War

My favorite U2 album and the one that really put them on the map as a super group. 


With apologies to Prince, REM, Bruce Springsteen, Frank Zappa, Pink Floyd, Roger Waters, and many, many others. 


Jim Burgess - I owe ten discs for the 1980's.... this one is really tough for me....


1) " I Just Can't Stop It"  by the English Beat, Starting with THE ska song, ``Mirror in the Bathroom,'' and then grab her with ``Hands Off... She's Mine.'' ``Two Swords'' and ``Twist and Crawl'' leave you crawlin' and then Smokey's song buries you. ``Rough Rider'' picks it back up to lead perfectly into the faster and faster ``Click, Click.'' After death, Ranking Roger takes over to bring everyone to a full stop with a ``Big Shot.'' ``Stand Down Margaret'' was a must until she did and ``Can't Get Used to Losing You'' is beautiful, and so it goes. That's number one. I actually don't own this one, I only have it on tape.


2) "Shoot Out the Lights" by Richard and Linda Thompson.  I've still gotta choose Shoot Out the Lights, the live tour of this record was one of the most memorable concerts ever.  With the backing band of Simon Nicol, Dave Pegg, Pete Zorn, and Dave Mattacks on drums every shift in tone, rhythm, or chord is perfectly seamless. We also have Linda's incomparable (well, almost, I sincerely shall miss Emma Kirkby!) vocals and the palpable emotion tearing the record in two.


3) "Fear and Whiskey" by the Mekons.  It's the Mekons, of course, the world's greatest rock band. This one makes me laugh, it makes me dance, it makes me cry. PERIOD. ``Darkness and Doubt,'' ``Chivalry,'' and ``Trouble Down South.'' are perfect songs of angst. ``Last Dance'' is one of the best late night party songs ever. But ``Hard to be Human Again'' says it all. It really is ``the sort of music that drags you from your sweat soaked bed and makes you want to put your clothes on and maybe take 'em off again a bit later...'' [italics in original].


4) "Seconds of Pleasure" by Rockpile.  This was the Dave Edmunds/Nick Lowe collaboration.  "Teacher, Teacher" was the big signal off this one, but the whole album is a paean to Power Pop at its best.


5) "Evening Standards" by The Jags.  The Jags are one of the greatest underrated bands of all time.  "Back of My Hand" is possibly the most essential Power Pop song of all time.  The Jags never made the same impact on pop new wave rock of this period as did Nick Lowe and Elvis Costello, but these songs REALLY hold up over time.  This album is incredible.


6) "Get Happy" by Elvis Costello.  And so here is the 1980's Elvis record that has all that great R&B influence.  To me the sequence in the middle of Side 1 going from "Secondary Modern" to "Men Called Uncle" is just completely sublime.  To me you had to play this record many, many times to get everything out of it, like all of the records

on this list, it rewards listening again NOW!


7) "Boy" by U2.  Yes, so Joshua Tree later in the decade was the album that awakened everyone to U2, but hearing this very first record of theirs and seeing them on their first few US tours, to me is what really makes them a great band.  Yes, "I Will Follow"!!!


8) "Speaking in Tongues" by Talking Heads.  "This Must Be the Place (naive melody)" is perhaps the most beautiful song of the 1980's, and of course this has "Burning Down the House" and "Pull Up the Roots" on

it too.  Just an incredibly good album.


Then, because I can't just choose, I'm going to choose Joy Division and then New Order...


9) "Closer" by Joy Division.  This just IS the most essential Post-Punk album of all time.  It was recorded just before Ian Curtis' suicide and it just brims with angst and demands, just DEMANDS that you listen to it.  Beginning with "Atrocity Exhibition" and through every other track it is austere, focused and amazing rock.  There

isn't anything better in this style that ever was recorded.


10) "Power, Corruption and Lies" by New Order.  It took two albums for New Order to find its own voice without Ian Curtis.  This is the best post-punk dance-rock record of the 1980's, hands down.  I danced to these songs SO much.... they were ubiquitous in the cool clubs.  "Age of Consent" is an essential song, despite having been used in an AT&T Wireless commercial...


Andrew Goff - This gets very personal for me. But I’ll try and be critically neutral.


10. “The Joshua Tree” by U2

Bono is so earnest that it hurts, but he chews the scenery like Bogart. The Edge has the most ridiculous name in music, but he is scintillating.


9. “Back In Black" by AC/DC

In the decade “dominated” by heavy metal and trash pop, it’s easy to understand why so many people have so many regrets, but this is iconic rock that doesn’t give a f***, just the way the Rolling Stones envisaged it.


8. “Tracy Chapman” by Tracy Chapman

The most unlikely album, and one that was a rare departure into heartfelt territory in a decade of politics and fluff.


7. “Low Life” by New Order

New Order albums are a ramshackle affair, and it could be argued that this is the only one that sticks together start to finish. More importantly, it’s dance rock – a decade before that was “a thing”.


6. “Introspective” by Pet Shop Boys

"Imperial” Pop band makes four-to-the-floor house music album. From the opening strains of Left To My Own Devices through the greatest cover of all time (Always On My Mind) this moved Dance music on from the tiredness of Disco, setting the stage for the revolution coming in 1990.


5. “So” by Peter Gabriel

Letting go of the obtuse genius of previous albums to create an accessible album was the plan, the result was a masterpiece.


4. "Run D.M.C." by Run D.M.C.

It’s like that, and that’s the way it is.


3. “Music For The Masses” by Depeche Mode

The album that set up Depeche Mode as alternative rock Gods. The subsequent live tour was the template for similar acts for decades to come, but the album is dark, brooding, and near-faultless synth-pop.


2. “London Calling” by The Clash

Punk’s most complete album, from a band that was on the verge of moving to pop-punk and cashing out with extreme prejudice.


1. “Born In The U.S.A.” by Bruce Springsteen

The greatest album by an american of all time.


Robery Rodday, Jr. - talk talk - the colour of spring

tom petty - full moon fever

don henley - building the perfect beast

dire straits - making movies

midnight oil - diesel and dust


Robert Lesco - This was a bit of a tough one.  Many of the bands I followed (Eurythmics, Level 42, Tears For Fears, and so on) spread their finest moments over a number of LPs which made it hard to choose just one.


Paul Simon - Hearts and Bones;  Sure, Graceland was big but I have always felt that this album was unfairly over-looked.


Talking Heads - Remain In Light;  Remember:  "Facts are useless in emergencies."


Japan - Gentlemen Take Polaroids;  I have several of their albums but this one stood out for me.


David Bowie - Let's Dance;  another one that jumps out at me from his volume of work, though I gather he didn't have much kind to say of it looking back.


They Might Be Giants - Lincoln.


I sure wanted to be able to include things like Nunsexmonkrock by Nina Hagen or Swordfishtrombones by Tom Waites (who really ought to have fit in somewhere in a top ten) or Children of the Night by Nash the Slash.  Shame I couldn't deficit spend and make it up by leaving space in the 1990s list.


Deadline for the First set of 5 Albums from the 1990’s is April 26th at 7:00am my time!  Feel free to include comments in your own choices, or on anyone else’s!  Or just get your ass in gear and catch up if you are behind.

Where in the World is Kendo Nagasaki?


Round 1


John David Galt:

Curt Schilling in Tokyo, Japan


Kevin Wilson:

Johann Sebastian Bach in Pretoria, South Africa


Andy York:

Doug Kent in Mesquite, Texas


Richard Weiss:

Oliver Cromwell in Brasilia, Brazil


Hank Alme:

George Clinton in Des Moines, Iowa


Rick Desper:

Prince in Minneapolis, Minnesota


Marc Ellinger:

Ronald Reagan in Berlin, Germany


Jim Burgess:

Pablo Picasso in Government Center, Boston, Massachusetts


Tom Howell:

Susan Glaspell in Schwyz, Switzerland 


Brendan Whyte:

Bill Cosby in Alcatraz, San Francisco Harbor, California


Jack McHugh:

Leonardo Di Vinici in Tokyo, Japan


Andy Lischett:

Albert Einstein in Madrid, Spain


Mark Firth:

Emil Zatopek in Christchurch, New Zealand


Hint to Person Placed Closest to Me: I died before you were born.  Wrong nationality…but correct chromosome.


Round 2


Jack McHugh:

Jesus Christ in San Paulo, Brazil


Andy York:

Doug Kent in Tangier, Morocco


Richard Weiss:

Niccolo di Bernardo dei Machiavelli in Lima, Peru


John David Galt:

Snoop Dogg in Marseille, France


Tom Howell:

Frances Sargent Osgood (born 18 Jun 1811, died 12 May 1850) in Zagreb,



Rick Desper:

Charles Darwin on Darwin Island, Galapagos


Hank Alme:

Tony Romo in Vientiane, Laos


Marc Ellinger:

Charlotte of Prussia (Alexandra Feodorovna) in Milan, Italy


Andy Lischett:

Anne Hathaway in Rome, Italy


Brendan Whyte:

Pope Innocent IV in Rome, Italy


Jim Burgess:

Marco Polo in Kabul, Afghanistan


Mark Firth:

John Bunyan in Hanoi, Vietnam


Kevin Wilson:

Anne Boleyn in Milan, Italy


Hint to Person Placed Closest to Me:

You were born during my lifetime, but I died before you reached the pinnacle of your fame.


Round 3


John David Galt:

Sir Francis Drake in Drake's Bay, California


Tom Howell:

Johannes Ockeghem in Manaus, Brazil


Andy York:

Gaius Caesar in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil


Andy Lischett:

Josephine Bonaparte in Sofia, Bulgaria


Richard Weiss:

Betsy Ross in Damascus, Syria


Rick Desper:

Simon Bolivar in Bogota, Colombia


Jim Burgess:

Christopher Columbus in Corunna, Spain


Jack McHugh:

Christopher Columbus in La Paz, Bolivia


Brendan Whyte:

Andrew Snowden on Mt Snowdon, Wales


Kevin Wilson:

Jane Austen in Florence, Italy


Mark Firth:

Douglas Fairbanks Jr. in Bandar Seri Begawan, Brunei


Hank Alme:

Pope Pius III in Quito, Ecuador


Hint to Person Placed Closest to Me:

You were born about 300 years before I died.  We were born on different continents, but as subjects of the same nation’s rule.


Round 4


John David Galt:

Dolly Madison in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico


Brendan Whyte:

Queen Henrietta-Maria at Lake Titicaca, Peru


Andy York:

Ben Franklin in Naples, Italy


Andy Lischett:

Niccolo Paganini in Las Vegas, Nevada


Richard Weiss:

Thomas Jefferson in Mexico City, Mexico


Tom Howell:

Joseph Smith, Sr. in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


Rick Desper:

Thomas Jefferson in Honolulu, Hawaii


Mark Firth:

General Franco, in Lima, Peru


Jack McHugh:

Mahatma Gandhi in Mexico City, Mexico


Jim Burgess:

Johann Sebastian Bach in Lima, Peru



Hint to Person Placed Closest to Me:

We held the same office, but not at the same time.




Round 5


Brendan Whyte:

James Madison, enjoying the nightlife  in Tijuana, Mexico


John David Galt:

John Quincy Adams in Salt Lake City, Utah


Tom Howell:

William Henry Harrison in Pape’ete, Tahiti


Andy York:

John Quincy Adams in Cancun, Mexico


Andy Lischett:

William Henry Harrison in Pape'ete, Tahiti


Hank Alme:

Narendra Modi in Oaxaca, Mexico


Richard Weiss:

James Madison in Honolulu, Hawaii


Jack McHugh:

Woodrow Wilson in Acapulco, Mexico


Mark Firth:

John Adams in Pago Pago, American Samoa


Jim Burgess:

Theodore Roosevelt in Panama City, Panama


Hint to Person Placed Closest to Me:

We also held the same office, but not at the same time.


Round 6


John David Galt:

James Madison in Managua, Nicaragua


Andy Lischett:

Andrew Jackson in Hilo, Hawaii


Andy York:

Aaron Burr in Guadalajara, Mexico


Tom Howell:

William Henry Harrison in Apia, Western Samoa


Rick Desper:

John Adams in Hilo, Hawaii


Hank Alme:

Dwight Eisenhower in Hilo, Hawaii


Jack McHugh:

Franklin Delano Roosevelt in Brownsville, TX


Richard Weiss:

James Madison in Auckland New Zealand


Jim Burgess:

William Henry Harrison in Escuintla, Guatemala


Mark Firth:

James Monroe in Majuro


Hint to Person Placed Closest to Me:

You are not the first person to identify me correctly, nor the only one this round, but you are closer to my location than anyone before.


Round 7


Andy York:

William Henry Harrison in Veracruz, Mexico


Jim Burgess:

William Henry Harrison in Taga, Western Samoa


Tom Howell:

William Henry Harrison in Suva, Fiji


Brendan Whyte:

James Madison in Clipperton Island


Andy Lischett:

William Henry Harrison in Bora Bora


Jack McHugh:

James Madison in Sydney, Australia


John David Galt:

Teddy Roosevelt on Easter Island


Mark Firth:

James Madison in Rotorua, New Zealand


Rick Desper:

James Madison on Wake Island


Hank Alme:

William Henry Harrison in Mexico City, Mexico


Hint to Person Placed Closest to Me:

You know who I am, and you are not the only one.  You haven’t found me yet, and the second-closest guess was less than 20 miles further away from me than yours.


Round 8


Brendan Whyte:

James Madison interned in both sense on Nauru 


Andy York:

William Henry Harrison in Puebla, Mexico


John David Galt:

William Henry Harrison in Tikal, Belize


Andy Lischett:

William Henry Harrison in Kiribati


Jim Burgess:

William Henry Harrison in Mata-Utu, Wallis and Futuna


Tom Howell:

William Henry Harrison in Nuku'alofa, Tonga


Jack McHugh:

James Madison in Pago Pago, American Samoa


Rick Desper:

William Henry Harrison in Nuku'alofa, Tonga


Mark Firth:

James Madison in Tarawa


Hint to Person Placed Closest to Me:

You know who I am – as do many others - and you are closer than last month’s closest guesser.  Right now I am at the airport.


Round 9



Andy York:

William Henry Harrison in Guatemala, Guatemala


Brendan Whyte:

William Henry Harrison in Belize City, Belize


John David Galt:

William Henry Harrison in Veracruz, Mexico


Tom Howell:

William Henry Harrison at Boniki International on Tarawa in Kiribati


Jack McHugh:

William Henry Harrison in Tarawa, Kiribati


Jim Burgess:

William Henry Harrison at Hihifo Airport, Wallis and Futuna


Rick Desper:

William Henry Harrison at Hihifo Airport on the island of Wallis and Futuna


Hank Alme:

William Henry Harrison in Alamo, Mexico


Mark Firth:

William Henry Harrison in Mala'e, Wallis and Futuna


Hint to Person Closest to Me:

Who doesn’t know who I am?  You’re just slightly closer than the closest guess last month, and just slightly closer than the second-place  guess THIS month.  And now I’m not at the airport, I’m parked right outside of it…I was just trying to help you figure out the city; it’s a city with an airport.


Deadline for Round 10 is April 26th at 7am My Time


“The Abacus and the Cross” by Nancy Marie Brown

Reviewed by Paul Milewski


This is the story of Gerbert of Aurillac (a town in what is today southwestern France) who became Pope Sylvester II.  Brown portrays him as a learned man of humble origins who lived in what she portrays as a golden age: before the Great Schism of 1054 divided the church into east and west and before the First Crusade in 1096 set Christianity and Islam against each other.  Born in the mid-900’s, he at one point studied in the Moslem-controlled part of what is today Spain.  The Moslems had all the books, all the learning, all the science, and were the source of the Arabic numerals (crediting the Hindus) we all use every day.  Although the historical record concerning Gerbert (or Pope Silvester II, if you prefer) is less than conclusive, Brown seems to resolve any doubts in Gerbert’s favor.  As is my usual practice, excerpts are provided below without proper attribution.

[Page 25-26]

The [book-making] process, as Gerbert learned it at Aurillac, started with making parchment.  According to Pliny’s Natural History, written in the first century A.D., parchment—in Latin, pergamenum—was invented for the king of Pergamos (modern Bergama, Turkey) to break the Egyptian monopoly on papyrus.  Parchment is made from the skins of sheep or goats, or, for special books, calves or even rabbits.  Skins were everywhere; the sedge used for papyrus was common only on the banks of the Nile.


Papyrus made a fine, light sheet widely used in the Roman Empire.  The outer bark is scraped off and the pith sliced into thin fibers.  These are laid flat in a square, a second layer is placed at right angles, and the two are pounded until the plant’s gummy sap bonds the sheet together…


…Books made of papyrus were also scrolls—not the familiar, handy, block-shaped item with stiff covers and pages that turn, which was a codex.  Scrolls have to be read from beginning to end:  You can’t thumb through a scroll.  And you can’t make a codex out of papyrus:  It cracks when it’s folded.

[Page 33]

Gerbert’s first pen was a stylus made of wood or bone, one end sharp for scratching into the wax, the other flat like a spatula for smoothing out mistakes.  From there he advanced to a quill.  These were plucked from live geese in the springtime.  The best were long primaries from the tip of the left wing, which curve away from the eyes and fit comfortably in the right hand.  With a penknife, he would first cut away the side barbs and slice off the end of the quill at a sharp angle.  Then he would shape the nib, with curving sides and a flat time, and test it by writing (often on the flyleaf on the back of a manuscript) Beatus vir.[1]


A well-cut pen slid easily down the page, especially when writing on a tilted desk.  But, because of the design of the nib, it always caught on the upward strokes.  For this reason, the common script of the day, Carolingian minuscule, made letters with only downward strokes.  Not until the fifteenth century did writers learn to split the tip of the nib lengthwise, making upward strokes possible.  Angular and cramped, Carolingian minuscule can be difficult to decipher, but it was efficient:  Most letters take only three quick strokes.

[Page 86-87]

The Venerable Bede, an Anglo-Saxon monk in Northumbria, England, describes finger counting enthusiastically in his book On the Reckoning of Time, written in about 725:


When you say one, bend the left little finger and touch the middle line of the palm with it.  When you say two, bend the third finger to the same place.  When you say three, bend the middle finger in the same way.  When you say four, raise the little finger.  When you say five, raise the third finger.  When you say six, raise the middle finger and bend the third finger down to the middle of the palm.  When you say seven, touch the base of the palm with the little finger and hold up all the other fingers.  When you say eight, bend the third finger in the same way.  When you say nine, bend the shameless finger in the same way.


Yes, the shameless finger is the middle finger—still shameless today.


The numbers ten through ninety were also made with the left hand.  Some were extremely complicated.  For sixty, for example, first bend your thumb toward your palm “with its upper end lowered,” like the capital letter for the Greek gamma.  Then, keeping your thumb bent, place your forefinger over it, just below the thumbnail.


Similar contortions of the right hand made the hundreds and thousands.  You could count higher by placing the left hand in various ways on the chest, back, or thigh.  For 90,000, for example, “place the left hand on the small of the back, with the thumb pointing toward the genitals.”  For a million, join both hands with your fingers interlaced.


In addition to calculating, finger numbers were used as a secret code.  Monks assigned a number to each letter of the Latin alphabet.  By signaling 3-1-20-19-5-1-7-5, Bede reported, you could tell your companion, Caute age, “Be Careful!”[2]  Medieval Arabic poetry, meanwhile, gives useful examples of how you could insult someone by displaying certain numbers: 93 meant the person was stingy, 30 meant he was picking lice off his private parts, 90 meant “asshole.”

[Page 113]

That sky was not the few twinkles we’re used to.  Thanks to smog and light pollution, most of us have never seen the full shimmering panoply of stars, planets, and the Milky Way.  Modern astronomers associated with the Dark Sky project like to tell of the blackout following the Northridge earthquake in 1994.  Los Angelenos lit up the hotlines, fearful of the “giant silvery cloud” over the city.  To Gerbert, that cloud was a clock and a compass; its regularities (and irregularities) gave a lesson in divine harmony, a way to reach God by studying his Creation.

[Page 177]

When [Holy Roman Emperor] Otto II died, the nobles of Bobbio were not the only Italians to rebel.  Gerbert escaped with his life.  The pope was not so lucky.  As soon as Theophanu[3] took her German army north, to reclaim her son and establish her regency, Pope John XIV, that old fox Peter of Pavia, was kidnapped.  Peter had been Otto’s chancellor.  Though aristocratic, Italian, and qualified to be pope, he was perceived as Otto’s creature.  He was locked in the dungeon of the Castel Saint’Angelo, the fortress beside Saint Peter’s in Rome.  His captor was Pope Boniface VII.  Boniface had been elected pope in 974 with the backing of the powerful Crescentian family (to make room for their favorite, they had strangled the sitting pope, Benedict VI).  Evicted from office by Otto’s army, Bonifact robbed the Vatican treasury and fled with the money to Constantinople.  Upon Otto’s death, he returned and, with the Crescentians’ help, reclaimed his seat.  Peter of Pavia died in the dungeon in late 984.

[Page 217]

Many of Gerbert’s successors were even less likely popes: John XVII was married with three children (he lasted less than six months).  John XVIII (1003-1009) was the bastard son of a priest.  Sergius IV (1009-1012), known as Peter Pig’s Snout, the son of a shoemaker, was indeed a bishop; he had been Gerbert’s papal librarian.  But Benedict VIII (1012-1024) was a layman, son of the count of Tusculum.  Benedict ruled Rome alongside his brother Romanus, who was consul and senator and then pope, in his turn, as John XIX (1024-1032).  Neither Benedict nor John were churchmen.[4]  Both were elevated to the priesthood after becoming pope, so that they could perform their duties on the eighty-five days a year when the pope made his grand procession through the streets of Rome, trailed by clergy, commoners, and pilgrims from every Christian land, to preside at one or another of the many churches in the Holy City. 


[Page 219]

His most famous papal acts exist in legend—the documents are missing, but it was during his papacy that Christianity triumphed over paganism in Europe.  Gog and Magog were defeated, not through battle, but by baptism.  Gerbert wrote letters to Vladimir, prince of Kiev, and to Olaf Truggvason, king of Norway, supporting their efforts to convert their countrymen (and commanding the Norsemen to cease using Viking runes and to write in Latin like civilized folk).  He confirmed the ecclesiastical arrangements Pope Gregory had made with Boleslav Chobry, duke of Poland.  To King Vajk of Hungary, baptized as Stephen, he sent a papal blessing and a royal crown (the very one, so it is said, now in the National Museum in Budapest), and he established the first Hungarian bishopric at Gran.  He sent another bishop (soon to be martyr) to Prussia, and encouraged missions to the pagan Magyars, Liutizi, Pechenegs, and Swedes.  By the time of Gerbert’s death, the Roman Church stretched from Greenland east to the Black Sea, where it met its Byzantine counterpart, and talks were underway to reunite the Eastern and Western churches.


By Larry Peery

From 1960 to 1965 I studied Latin in junior high, high and college. I did it because I wanted to read Caesar and Cicero in the original classic Latin. I remember many of my friends who were Roman Catholic laughed at the time that I would waste my time studying classical Latin when the Church was moving away from the traditional church Latin, but I kept at it. I remember telling myself as I waded through Virgil that someday I would visit Rome.

In 1988 I got my chance when I made my first trip to Italy. I'd programmed a week in Rome, although I knew that wouldn't be enough to do all the things I wanted or visited all the places I wanted to see. Still, there was one place I had to visit, The Forum.

I took a day tour that focused on the sites of the Roman Empire. A half day was devoted to The Forum. The bus was full of foreign tourists and a very good tour guide that I had got to know on some of my tours in and around in the previous few days.

Things went pretty much as you'd expect, I guess. The Forum isn't like the Vatican, Colesseum or Pantheon. It's big enough in size that even a few dozen tour buses can't begin to fill it, especially if you go early or late. I prefer the morning because it's quiet and peaceful but the time around sunset is equally magical.

Alas we got there just as the other few dozen tourist buses were arriving. Fortunately my tour guide was smart and we did the tour backwards, so as the herds of tourists moved from A to Z our group moved from Z to A, thus avoiding the crowds except for the spot --- I think it was the Temple of Mars --- where our paths crossed for a few minutes.

Somewhere near the end of our tour we finally arrived at the Arch of Titus; which was on my must-see list. Fortunately, most of my tour members had wandered off on their own in search of a half-liter bottle of water for which they would pay USD6. I stood there in the late afternoon looking up at the Arch slowly and painfully translating the inscriptions to myself with my quarter-century old Latin. It was slow going.

I heard the tour guide's voice behind me, "Can you read Latin?" she asked, obviously surprised.

"Yes," I responded in a quiet voice.

"Are you Catholic?" she probed.

"No," I said in an even quieter voice.

"Are you Italian?" she wouldn't give up.

"No," I almost whispered.

"Well, how do you know Latin?" she demanded.

"I studied it for five years a quarter of a century ago!" I replied in a voice most triumphant.

She smiled and walked away to leave me in my solitude.

I wondered what Titus would have thought of our conversation?

As I walked back to the tour bus I paused to sniff the pines of Rome and the music of Respighi floated through my head and my heart. "This," I thought to myself, "is why people travel to places like Rome."

As I climbed onto the bus, the tour guide, who had been patiently waiting looked at me and said, "Now, you are a true Roman."

Another quarter of a century has passed. Today I read that the Italian company that owns Campari had bought the rights to Grand Marnier for $759M. "Not a bad return on an investment of 30 pieces of silver." I thought to myself. Compari plans to grow the sales of the brand and sell off a villa on the Cote d'Azur once owned by King Leopold II of Belgium for unknown millions of euros. Current shareholders of the privately held Grand Marnier will get close to USD 10,000 for each share, plus a part of the proceeds from the villa sale.

"Now we know how Diplomacy is played today. Titus, my tour guide, Leopold II and Allan would be proud," I thought to myself as I raised a thimble of Grand Marnier.

Brain Farts: The Only Subsubzine With It’s Own Fragrance

By Jack “Flapjack” McHugh –

(or just email Doug and he’ll send it to me)

Issue #77




My Kindle has not reappeared, which sucks because I was hoping to trade it in for an upgrade to a Kindle Fire.  Instead I have nothing.  And my baseball team in Sack’s league is nothing but injured players.  Autodraft sucks.


I do thank you for comments on my two diaries I put in here.  Maybe I will do another one soon.  But this month you just get photos.  Eat it.






And the last one I will do full-page so you can print it…..


ZERO SUM3     Subzine to Eternal Sunshine    Issue 12    27 March 2016


Published by Richard Weiss. 


GM Musings:  Sorry all for blowing last month’s deadline and not publishing.  Last month I kept confusing myself as to when Leap Year was, and when Doug was publishing.  I wanted to believe Leap Year was on a Tuesday, and he’d publish that day.  So, on the 25th and over that weekend, I dallied with the zine but didn’t do it. 


My Father died on Leap Year this year.  He was 92.  He retired from the City Council of the Capital City of Vermont when he was 90.  He had to retire from the VT State Board of Nursing when he was 91.  My brothers said he’d die quickly after retiring.  They were right.  With no reason to do much, including drink water or get out of his favorite chair, he became frail, elderly and on the brink.  He was ready to die.  A friend had convinced him that suicide was horrible to one’s children, family, and friends.  A renal death is one that many in the health professions consider ideal. 


I had a visit planned to start 3 March.  He was so looking forward to it.  But from 2/25 to Sunday 2/28 he started actively dying.  I changed my flights, but didn’t get there before he died early in the morning of 2/29.  My brother, one of his three sons, was there.  The one with no emotional intelligence and social poise, but who said all the right things and did all the right things all day and as he died, peacefully, as he wished, in his home. 


Two days later the front pages of Vermont’s newspapers had his obituary. 


What has slowed me down these past five weeks is that I’ve considered suicide many, many days of my life since I was a teenager.  Over the past 15 years, I knew I wouldn’t as long as my Dad was alive.  Now that he isn’t alive, well, have I wanted to come up with a new reason? 


There were few people he didn’t like, some more he didn’t respect.  One was a person who offered me a job a few years ago.  One of both was Bernie Sanders, which is why in the Bourse I sold him first.  Those issues were from 30 and more years ago.  8 years ago, with belief that Hillary would be the best person possible as present and I wasn’t sure she could win a general election, I campaigned in AZ for Obama, as he changed my mind and I was sure he could win.  I’m in that process of change again, from Hillary to Bernie. 


Below is what I wrote for last month’s issue, that never came out. 


GM Musings: (On February 22, 2016, I wrote the following)”


Bulletin.  Winner in Where In The World Is Kendo Nagasaki In Doug Kent’s House = Tom Howell. 


Round 8



John Galt

John Lennon

Eiffel Tower

Doug Kent

Andy York

Charles Steinmetz

Angel Falls, VZ

Tom Howell

Nicola Tesla

Angel Falls, VZ

Jim Burgess

Ted Cruz

Notre Dame Cathedral

Tom Howell Wins.  Incredibly, Andy York had an almost perfect match to the clues, but was wrong.  I didn’t even know who Charles Steinmetz was before his guess.  Much respect to Andy.  Kudos to Tom. 



I live beyond cable TV and internet.  I am now a Direct TV person.  As for the internet, I fell sort of POTS-ish, paying by the byte for data use at not super speeds.  Satellite internet is more expensive than Verizon MiFi.  Yuck. 


Politics remains fairly entertaining and consuming.  The rest of the world’s view of the theater of the absurb of democracy post-Citizen’s United has got to contain some tears and some laughter.  If I weren’t living it and losing in the Bourse, I’d think this was a mockumentary. 


Winter in Northern CA has created some rain and snowpack enough not to continue the drought, but no super El Nino and no massive snow.  At my house at 1,900 feet elevation, I saw snow flakes one morning. 


I helped some people obtain amnesty under Ronald Reagan, including my son’s baby sitter.  I thought the program succeeded but immigration reform failed.  I didn’t think I’d get back to again wanting stronger enforcement of employers, the federal registration system, and again time for a path toward legalization.  And forget the wall, no matter who pays for it.  I tend to think I’m insane for the same reaction to the same problem would have a different outcome; however, the humanitarian outcome was wonderful, we just didn’t have the political will and various huge market sectors and individuals did not want to reform illegal immigrant hiring halls at the Home
Depots and corner parking lots of America. 


I would bet that everyone reading this who is an American knows where they could hire casual day help and that they know most of those people are illegal immigrants.  And, here in NorCal, they will not work for anything even close to the minimum wage.  We hirers of illegal immigrants pay a fair and living wage, while Walmart doesn’t. 


While I’m getting wound up here, how can we not have a minimum wage that puts everyone above government subsidies?  How can we really think that we should subsidize those employers who want to make so many people part-time and not pay a living wage?  That seems one of the more bizarre twists to the true conservative mind. 


Another is regulation of the bedroom but not of the gun closet. 


I’d better adjudicate, since I’m days late and the internet may give out at any moment.








ZeroSumCubed deadline for Issue 13 is THE SUNDAY BEFORE Doug’s deadline.  

That is, before 8 AM, CA time, Sunday 24 April 2016.



On Hold







Eddie Chapman Intimate Diplomacy  Germany (Harold Zarr Jr) vs.  France (Doug Kent)


I will be contacting Harold and Doug in the next few days, describe the current troop locations, SC’s held and not, countries controlled, and dollars in the bank. 



Denis Donaldson Intimate Diplomacy: England (Jack McHugh) vs.  Germany (Doug Kent)

Denis Donaldson, infiltrated the Sinn Féin on behalf the British government. He was found dead in his cottage after a Northern Ireland newspaper revealed this.


Doug’s Choices:  TGRAEIF

Jack’s Choices:  T E F R G I A


Winter 1900 Bids


Jack’s Bids (has 20)

Doug's Bids (has 22)

Controller of Country






















England had 20, spent 16, has 4

Germany had 22, spent 6, has 16.


Press Throwdowns:


Moves will be adjudicated and sent to the two players, when both players submit orders. 








Where In The World Is Kendo Nagasaki in Doug Kent’s House


Round 1



Mark Firth



John Galt

David Beckham

Delhi, India

Doug Kent

Could not find

Kevin Wilson

Did not submit

Andy Lischett

Little Miss Muffet

1237 Kurdsan Way

Jim Burgess

Toshiro Mifune

Mt. Fuji

Andy York

Richard Weiss



Gender is correct.  I died before s/he was “born. “


Round 2



John Galt

Joan of Arc

Memphis, TN

Doug Kent

Teddy Roosevelt

London Bridge

Andy York

George Washington


Clue:  There is something about your name that relates to my fame.  We were born on the same continent.


Round 3



John Galt

Napoleon Bonaparte

Washington, D.C.

Doug Kent

George Washington Carver

Floating on the Great Salt Lake

Andy York


Kansas City, KS

Jim Burgess

George Washington

On Mount Vernon

Mark Firth

David Lloyd George

Tulsa OK

Clue:  I was alive in two centuries, starting the one after you died.  We share a citizenship, although each of us had more than one.


Round 4



John Galt

Margaret Thatcher

Washington Monument

Doug Kent

Washington Irving

Golden Gate Bridge

Andy York



Jim Burgess

George H.W. Bush

Mount Rushmore

Mark Firth

Albert Einstein

Ellis Island

Original Clue:  You are closest but not at all close.  You are the wrong gender.  You were only a citizen of one country.  I died during your life.  We are both dead. We are famous for different reasons. 

Subsequent clue to Andy York: You are closest but not at all close. You are the right gender. You were only a citizen of one country. I died during your life. We are both dead. We are famous for different reasons.” 


Round 6



John Galt

Sir Winston Churchill

Jefferson Memorial

Doug Kent

Laurence Olivier

The Louvre

Andy York


Fort Knox

Tom Howell

Jeremiah J. Murphy

Mount Roraima

Jim Burgess

Leonard Nimoy


Clue:  The other landmark there.


Round 7



Doug Kent

Alfred Hitchcock

Lincoln Memorial

Andy York


Angel Falls

Tom Howell

Nikola Tesla

Cuquenan Falls in Venezuela

Clue:  Can’t get any closer than you are now.


Round 8



John Galt

John Lennon

Eiffel Tower

Doug Kent

Andy York

Charles Steinmetz

Angel Falls, VZ

Tom Howell

Nicola Tesla

Angel Falls, VZ

Jim Burgess

Ted Cruz

Notre Dame Cathedral

Tom Howell Wins.  Incredibly, Andy York had an almost perfect match to the clues, but was wrong.  I didn’t even know who Charles Steinmetz was before his guess.  Much respect to Andy.  Kudos to Tom. 


Press and End Game Statements Next Time:  I’m not sure how the clue about Joan of Arc and others answers had so many people in Paris.  Anyone who would explain, that’d be great. 


I was surprised how people stayed so close to previous answers, until I said no one was close and then only Tom Howell went far afield and was awarded with a clue that made sense to me but not to him.  Strangely to me, there are two natural landmarks in the same national park in Venezuela.  Tom thinks there are many, as he is more erudite than I am.





I will send an update to all players in the next few days.  There are only 5 candidates left. 


The Cathy and Pete Gaughan

Snowball Fighting Game. 


Jim Burgess: [Two Balls]

John David Galt: [Brett Favre]

Mark Firth: [Max Splodgey]

Doug Kent: [Jack Frost]

Jack McHugh: JM

Andy York: [Teddy Wayne]


Rules and empty map are in Issue 7. 


Reminder: 10 VPs = winner and end of game.  0 remaining HPs = go immediately, directly, and at maximum speed (determined by GM) to the kitchen and wait there three segments.  


Teddy Wayne/Andy:  Ended with one simple snowball at Q3.

S1: RR at Brett Favre (0.1 + 0.8 + 0.1 + .05 + .2  = .95) Rolled 64.  Hit

S2: Gather 2 SB

S3: RR at Brett Favre (0.1 + 0.8 + 0.1 + .05 + .2 - .1 = .95) Rolled 11.  Hit

Brett Favre/John:  Ended with no snowballs at Q5. Stands and shivers.

S1: Gather 2 SB

S2: RR at TW  (0.1 + 0.8 + 0.1 + .05 + .2 - .1 = .95) Rolled.31  Hit

S3: RR at TW  (0.1 + 0.8 + .05 + .2 - .1 = .95) Rolled 86.  Hit

Has been hit X4 in S3.  Runs to kitchen at full speed.  Will Get there S1 next turn and spend 3 segments there, being comforted by Mother Hubbard and her shelves so bare. 


Two Balls/Jim:  Ended with 2 SBs at G3.  Stands and shivers!

S1: RR at Max Splodgy (0.8 - .1 - .1 + 0.05 = 0.65) Rolled 96.  Failed!

S2: RR at Max Splodgy (0.8 - .1 - .1 + 0.05 = 0.65) Rolled 26.  Hit

S3:  Gathers 2 SB


Jack: Ended turn in kitchen drying socks with no snowballs.

S1: in kitchen

S2: in kitchen with Diana, oh, please, due respect, “Mom”

S3: In kitchen. Diana plays the banjo and helps Jack put his mittens back on.  Giving one sloppy kiss to his cheek, telling him “You are my hero. Go be a SAVAGE.”

Can return first segment of next turn.  Will start at W11 with two snowballs and 10 HP. Can then throw or move.  Can be targeted then.


Max Splodgey/Mark:  Ended at E11 with two SBs

S1: Shivers

S2: Shivers and teeth chatter

S3: Starts to cry and realizes tears are freezing on his face and some are mixing with his snot before freezing


Jack Frost/Doug:  Ended at Q9 with 1 snowball.

S1: RR at Brett Favre (0.8 + 0.1 + 0.1 = 0.95) Rolled 35.  Hit.

S2:  Gathers 2 SB

S3:  RR at Brett Favre (0.8 + 0.1 + 0.05 = 0.95). Rolled 26.  Hit.


Yard Banter:  Really heavy snow is falling, muffling all sound.  But great for snowball making.



Snowman at Q3 is headless. 



VP to start

VP gained

VP end

HP to start

HP received

HP end












































Deadline is 24 April 2016, a Sunday, at 8 AM California time.



Game Openings

Diplomacy (Black Press): Signed up: Harold Zarr, Kevin Wilson, Zachary Jarvie, Ken Peel, need three more.

Modern Diplomacy (Black Press): Rules in this issue.  Ten-player variant.  No planes will be used, just armies and fleets.  Signed up: Jack McHugh, Jim Burgess, John David Galt, Geoff Kemp, Harold Zarr.  Needs five more.

Where in the World is Kendo Nagasaki: Rules in issue #102.  Send in your guesses.  Prize for the winner?  Probably!  (Don’t forget to play in Richard Weiss’ subzine too!)

Hypothetical Questions: Just send in answers.  Anybody can play at any time, just takes participation.

Avalon Hill’s Civilization: The AH game, likely with the western expansion if we get enough players or if we use the computer version (in which case computer players will fill all remaining slots).  Signed up: Dick Martin, John David Galt, can take up to 7 more.  You can get the computer program (already including the old necessary patches) at but you’ll need to search around for DosBox too to run it on most modern operating systems.

Roger Cox has volunteered to run one of these: Divine Right, Dune, Source of the Nile, Titan, or Cosmic Encounter.  Contact me ASAP is you are interested in one or more of these games.  So far we have interest in Dune and Source of the Nile.

Coming Soon – Colonia VII?  Deviant Diplomacy?  Kremlin?  Make a suggestion or express interest!

Eternal Sunshine Game Section


Diplomacy, “Milk and Trash”, 2015A, W 05

Seasons Separated by Player Request

Austria (Jack McHugh – jwmchughjr “of” Build A Budapest, A Vienna.. Has A Budapest,

 F Constantinople, A Galicia, A Sevastopol, A Ukraine, A Vienna, A Warsaw.

England (Mark Firth – mogcate “of” Retreat A Sevastopol - Armenia..Build F London.. Has

 A Armenia, F English Channel, A Liverpool, F London, F Mid-Atlantic Ocean, F North Sea, F Spain(sc).

France (Paul Milewski – paul.milewski “of” Remove A Portugal.. Has F Wales.

Germany (Jim Burgess – jfburgess “of” Build A Kiel.. Has F Belgium, A Berlin, A Gascony,

 F Gulf of Bothnia, A Kiel, A Marseilles, A Munich, A Piedmont, F St Petersburg(sc).

Italy (John Biehljerbil “of” Retreat F Spain(sc) - Gulf of Lyon..Remove A Trieste.. Has

 F Adriatic Sea, F Aegean Sea, A Bulgaria, F Eastern Mediterranean, F Gulf of Lyon, A Venice,

 F Western Mediterranean.

Russia (Kevin Wilson – ckevinw “of” Retreat A Warsaw - Prussia..Remove A Moscow.. Has

 A Prussia.

Turkey (John David Galt – jdg “of” Has A Ankara, F Smyrna.


Note Mark Firth’s new primary email address.

Deadline for S 06 is April 26th at 7am my time




None.  You all suck.

Black Press Gunboat, “Noah’s Titanic”, 2015Arb32, W 05/S 06

Austria: Build A Budapest.. A Budapest – Rumania, F Bulgaria(sc) Supports F Greece (*Disbanded*),

 A Galicia – Warsaw, A Rumania – Ukraine, A Trieste Supports A Tyrolia, A Tyrolia Hold, A Warsaw - Livonia.

England: Remove F Barents Sea.. F Edinburgh Hold (*Dislodged*, retreat to Yorkshire or Clyde or OTB),

 F Irish Sea Hold, F London Hold.

France: Disband A Munich.. Build F Marseilles.. A Burgundy Hold, F Marseilles - Gulf of Lyon,

 F Mid-Atlantic Ocean - Western Mediterranean (*Bounce*), A Picardy Supports A Burgundy,

 A Piedmont Supports A Tyrolia - Venice (*Void*).

Germany: No room, plays 1 short.. A Berlin – Silesia, F Holland – Belgium, A Kiel Supports A Munich,

 A Munich Supports A Berlin – Silesia, F North Sea – Edinburgh,

 F Norwegian Sea Supports F North Sea – Edinburgh, A Ruhr Supports F Holland – Belgium,

 F St Petersburg(nc) Hold.

Italy: Build F Naples.. F Aegean Sea - Bulgaria(sc), A Ankara Supports A Smyrna – Constantinople,

 F Greece Supports F Aegean Sea - Bulgaria(sc), F Naples – Apulia, A Rome Supports A Venice,

 A Smyrna – Constantinople, F Tunis - Western Mediterranean (*Bounce*),

 A Venice Supports A Piedmont - Tyrolia (*Void*).

Turkey: Retreat A Ankara - Armenia.. Remove A Armenia.. F Black Sea - Constantinople (*Fails*),

 A Moscow - Sevastopol.


Deadline for F 06 will be April 26th at 7am My Time




Siberia to Eng & Tur: Don't even try to find refuge here.  We refugee Russians, ourselves, will fast freeze you.


Dateline Europe:  In an exclusive interview with the German Kaiser, the Kaiser expressed the hope that the French premier will view the situation in Europe in a more clear light, and recognize the danger to his country posed by the Italian Pope.  It is well know that that the Pope was furious with the reduction of the privileges enjoyed by the clergy in France, and that he has vowed in private to see the premier overthrown and the clergy restored to their status they enjoyed earlier. 


It is reported that the Italian’s have begun construction of a new fleet in Naples, and that the intended use of that fleet to support an invasion of France and the Iberian Peninsula in the near future.  In addition, movements of Italian units in the Balkans and Turkey lead us to believe that Italy will shortly attempt the conquest of the Balkans in an attempt to rebuild the Imperial Roman Empire.  Germany is offering to assist Austria-Hungary in any way possible to prevent this calamity from occurring.


English pirates that occupied the north coast of Saint Petersburg made a forlorn attempt to sneak out of anchorage undiscovered, but a German fleet, supported by Russian patriots successfully captured the port to prevent its continued use by the arrogant English.


When asked about the death of his cousin, the Russian Czar, the Kaiser replied that it was a sad by inevitable outcome given the poor leadership and rampant disregard for morality customarily associated with royalty.  The actions of the Czar’s troops in the territories they occupied were the stuff of horror and legend, and it can only auger good tidings that the Czar and his family are no longer among the living.  Many reports stated that the Czar suffered from a number of mental disorders brought on by the debauchery of the lifestyle that he led.  Kaiser said that it was sad, but true that these reports are accurate.  He expressed his true hope that Austrian occupation of Warsaw will lead to a period of rebuilding and reconstruction, and he expected the Austrian forces to complete the occupation of Russia in short order.


Eng-Rus: I haven't seen this much bile since Doug's liver biopsie...get grip man, you played like crap but its only a game.


Eng-Ger: Thank you for killing the Tsar--now if you could shoot his press agent, I'd be ever so grateful...


Ger - Fra: I hope that you disbanded your army and built a fleet.  You will need it!


GerIta: Your forces are well placed to attack both east and west.  I wonder if Austria will ever trust you again, given how you exploited his territory for your own advantage in the past.


AUSTRIA - WORLD: The last press from Russia was strangely abusive!


Papal Envoy - Sultan: Your fine new palaces in Russia are well worth scrapping for. Do maintain the pressure on Rumania.


Pope - Egg: Nope, nothing yet.


Pope Pluvius - Archduke: Rather disappointed. Germany is waltzing to a win and I'd have thought you of all people could spot that. Still time to switch efforts. My fleets are hardly a threat to central Austria.


Ita - Fra: Please get back to Mar, lest Bur falls even more quickly. Someone has to stop Germany and I'm not even adjacent.


Ita - Eng: any chance of you and France being buddies?


Ita - Ger: That's more than I do!

By Popular Demand


The goal is to pick something that fits the category and will be the "most popular" answer. You score points based on the number of entries that match yours. For example, if the category is "Cats" and the responses were 7 for Persian, 3 for Calico and 1 for Siamese, everyone who said Persian would get 7 points, Calico 3 and the lone Siamese would score 1 point. The cumulative total over 10 rounds will determine the overall winner. Anyone may enter at any point, starting with an equivalent point total of the lowest cumulative score from the previous round. If a person misses a round, they'll receive the minimum score from the round added to their cumulative total. In each round you may specify one of your answers as your Joker answer.  Your score for this answer will be doubled.  In other words, if you apply your Joker to category 3 on a given turn, and 4 other people give the same answer as you, you get 10 points instead of 5.  Players who fail to submit a Joker for any specific turn will have their Joker automatically applied to the first category. And, if you want to submit some commentary with your answers, feel free to.  The game will consist of 10 rounds, with the 10th round being worth double points.  A prize will be awarded to the winner.  Research is permitted, but cooperation or collusion between players is not!


Round 9 Categories


1.    A brand of watch other than Rolex.

2.    A jewelry store chain.

3.    A measure of time.

4.    A breed of dog considered unintelligent.

5.    Someone who currently or previously participated in this zine.


Kevin Wilson stuck all the NMRing players with the low score of 10.  Rick Desper and Andy York pulled 29 out of a possible 31 points.  Remember Round 10 is worth double points (so your joker is worth quadruple).  At least three players are in striking distance of Dane now!


Comments By Category


Watch – Dane Maslen “Well, Casio produces a huge range of watches, many of which will actually tell you the time as well as doing some other bizarre function, so it's about the only name that comes readily to my mind, unless Timex is still going.  I'm far from convinced, however, that it's the name that will jump readily to other players' minds.”  Andy Lischett “My first thought was Longines, but then I switched to Timex. If most respondents are under 40 the most popular may be Swatch.” Jim Burgess “Not that high quality, but the name everyone knows.”  Mark Firth “Rolex wasn't in my first four answers anyway.”


Jewelry Store – Dane Maslen “It's not often that I play my joker on an answer I'd never heard of before doing some research, but on this occasion all the other categories look like certain disasters whereas surely Zales must score reasonably well, given that it's the largest chain of jewelry stores in North America.”  Andy Lischett “First I thought C.D. Peacock, but they may not be national so I Googled national jewelry chains and came up with Jared. Then I asked Carol for her vote and she said Tiffany's, which is a much better answer. More fun and probably more popular.”  Brendan Whyte “Michael Hill. Kiwi makes good in Australia!”


Time – Dane Maslen “The choice of a measure of time seems like pot-luck to me.  'Second' and 'Year' are the other answers I considered.  For some reason 'Minute', 'Hour', 'Week' and 'Month' all seemed less plausible to me.  Perhaps 'Second' would have been the better choice as it might well attract those with a scientific background.”  Mark Firth “had "year" but I think q1 might encourage something shorter; also the scientific unit.”


Dumb Dog – Dane Maslen “I found three or four websites that listed 'unintelligent' (though this was often interpreted as 'difficult to train') dogs.  The Afghan hound was up at the top of every list, but is it really the breed that will come to other people's minds?  Left to my own devices, i.e. without searching the internet, I'd have gone for Pekingese.”  Andy Lischett “For a week when I was a kid we had an Irish setter named Reilly. A friend of my father raised the dog in a small apartment in Chicago and then moved to a place that did not allow dogs, so he gave Reilly to my father. The dog was so dumb and so clumsy that my mother couldn't stand it, so we gave him to a farmer.”  Kevin Wilson “I really don’t like the yappers as I call them.  Give me a large dog over a yapper anytime.”  Brendan Whyte “All of them. I've never met a dog who could speak more than 2 languages, the second being Yap. Nah, go with Chihuahua. Or Scooby Doo.” Rick Desper “Golden retriever (bless their empty skulls).”  Jim Burgess “Really unfair…some breeds like Beagles just don’t pay attention.”


Zine Participant – Dane Maslen “And finally I've no idea how I should be deciding on my choice for the fifth category.”  Brendan Whyte “Doug 'call me Ed E. Torr ' Kent  . He's a Joker, so I'll play him.”  Jim Burgess “That seems like the easy answer if people think of it.  I almost made it my joker.”


Round 10 Categories (Worth Double)– Don’t Forget to Choose a Joker Category (Double the Double Points)


1.    A member of the band The Monkees.

2.    A landlocked nation (does not border a sea or ocean).

3.    An American Civil War general with the Union side other than Grant.

4.    Another word for wind.

5.    A postal Diplomacy zine which is no longer published.


Deadline for Round 10 is April 26th at 7am My Time


General Deadline for the Next Issue of Eternal Sunshine:  April 26th, 2016 at 7:00am my time. Hope to See You Then!

[1] “Blessed is the man.”

[2] Why not “III-I-XX-XIX-V-VII-V” instead of 3-1-20-19-5-1-7-5?

[3] Emperor Otto II’s widow.

[4] Neither is.  Both are not.  My Microsoft Word didn’t like this.