Eternal Sunshine #115

August 2016

By Douglas Kent 911 Irene Drive, Mesquite, TX  75149

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Welcome to the latest issue of Eternal Sunshine, where the hits just keep on coming.  July 9th Heather announced to me that she wasn’t in love with me any longer and wanted a divorce.  So that has pretty much thrown my world into confusion and disarray.


I don’t know what the future of Eternal Sunshine is going to be.  I may keep it going.  I may shut it down.  I will stand by any games I start; so any game currently running in here or any game that fills and I start I will run to completion.  Beyond that I can’t say what is going to happen.  I might find myself wanting to actually expand the zine again, or I may just want to finish it out and go away.


So if you want to play in one of the games currently listed in the Game Openings section, sign up now.  Maybe new game starts will give me new energy.  But like I said, if a game starts, it’ll be run to completion no matter what I plan to do with the zine.


Hypothetical of the Month

Last month we gave you two questions:


#1 – You witness a car accident in which one party is clearly to blame: your Uncle.  There were no injuries, only vehicle damage.  Do you come forward to testify?


Andy York - Presuming it reaches a level that the police will do a report, I'd leave my name/contact info with them. It's up to the insurance companies to decide if they'd need my input. it is doubtful that any "testifying" would be required.


Melinda Holley - Yes.  Sorry that it's my uncle who's at fault; but if I were the victim, I would hope someone would do the same for me.


Steve Cooley - Sorry, but my professional experience comes into play. In a property damage only scenario, no one “testifies.” I think you mean “volunteer to talk to the officer on the scene.” My answer: if it’s obvious, they won’t need my statement.


Tom Howell - Oh, probably. Knowing my Uncle, it likely would not be a problem. Knowing my uncle, not coming forward would be more of a problem. Knowing my uncle, it most likely would NOT have been his fault.


Richard Weiss - Yes, I would.  I was on a first date with a woman, she was driving, crossed four lanes of traffic after turning left unto a street, trying to turn right, and hit the only other car on the entire highway.  I apologized to those in the other car and agreed with whose fault is was.  Had a relationship for some months.


Don Del Grande - Yes.  Why should it matter who did it?  Besides, there's a chance that some camera was there, and the last thing I need is a "leaving the scene of an accident" charge of some sort (or trying to claim that I didn't see anything but the camera shows otherwise).


Andy Lischett - It depends upon which uncle. The correct thing would be to rat out my uncle, who was clearly to blame, but do I want to damage my relationship with my family in order to make life easier for a stranger? No. I've had some uncles who would understand and some who wouldn't.


John David Galt - Yes, I'd tell the truth about the accident.  I expect my uncle would too.


#2 – You make a withdrawal at an ATM at your bank and $40 extra comes out.  Your receipt shows the amount you requested, so you know you won’t be debited for the extra $40.  Do you report it?


Andy York - Certainly, and have done so (well, not at an ATM but when a cashier hands too much change or bills stick together without their knowledge).


Melinda Holley - Yes.  If I'm going to commit bank robbery, I'd hope it would be for more than $40.  Plus the ATM footage would show everyone who used the ATM.  And I'm pretty sure, they could determine a good time probability for the error.  Finally, as anyone who has played FTF Diplomacy with me can attest, I have a lousy poker face.  One question and I'm done.


Steve Cooley - Yes. Character is what you do when no one can see you.


Tom Howell - Do this a lot. Walk up to cash machine; put in card; punch a buncha buttons; put card in wallet; take cash out of machine and put in wallet; take receipt out of machine & put in wallet; put wallet in pocket; and

walk away. I almost never do this when my wallet is empty of cash, and almost never go back and check. In all likelihood, I'd never realize if the machine had over- or under- paid me. Is that a copout? I think not: that's reality. However, if I did discover that the machine hadn't given me the amount asked for, yes, I'd let them know. I like my Credit Union, and want them to stay healthy; and, they'd want to know if the ATM was malfunctioning.


Richard Weiss - 1976, renting a house on Wrightsville Beach, NC with my fiance and her daughter.  Go to the bank, NC National Bank (actually one of the few surviving banks that adopted a more well known bank's name) ATM. They had the first ATMs I ever saw. Asked for $40 - a lot of money.  It started spitting out twenties.  I took all I could before worrying about getting caught and drove to Chapel Hill.  My landlord was the President of the Bank.  Obviously, if history is a portend, nah, I wouldn't report it.


Don Del Grande - No.  I know this because it happened to me once, although only for $20.


Andy Lischett - Yes, I give back the extra $40, even though I would then live in fear that the bank would mess up my account while trying to correct their error.


John David Galt - Yes, I'd tell the bank about the extra $40.  I'd also re-examine my most recent statement from them.  If they make one mistake they'll make others.


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: #1 – A neighbor’s kid finds $30 in your drive way and gives it to you.  No one claims it, although you aren’t certain if you dropped it or not.  You might have.  Do you give it to the kid?  #2 – You attend a wedding distinguished by poor food, boring speeches and bad music.  A few weeks later the bride asks if you enjoyed yourself.  Do you tell the truth?


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 – Nocturne: Aside from found footage and perhaps zombies, the horror film plot that has been overdone more than any other is the “carelessness with the Ouija Board” one.  Some films have even combined these (although I don’t think I’ve seen a found footage zombie movie with a Ouija Board…yet).  They’re a particular favorite of smaller-budget films.  But that doesn’t mean a film where people mess with the paranormal has to be a retread of every other one you’ve ever seen.  And if you’re like me, you are still willing to give a film with this overdone plot device a chance.  After all, it might be something different, or simply be done well.


I’m happy to report the new film Nocturne (directed by Stephen Shimek and written by Shimek along with Katy Baldwin and Kristi Shimek) strives to bring some depth and intelligence to this realm, and it succeeds quite well.


The set-up is pretty standard if you look at it from a distance.  Isaac (Darian Willardson) and Vi (Melanie Stone) are throwing a graduation party.  Unfortunately, another party in the same town with a live DJ draws almost all the attention, so only four friends show up: Maren (Hailey Nebeker), Liam (Colton Tran), and Gabe (Jake Stormoen), along with Jo (Clare Niederpruem) who wasn’t expected but “had to get out of the house for a while.”  They eat some cake and drink some beers, while Gabe tries to dazzle everyone with his philosophical discussions about religion and superstition (along with his skill at card tricks).


Pretty soon he convinces the others to use the a deck of cards and a wine glass to set up an impromptu Ouija Board and hold a séance.  As you might expect, things don’t go exactly as planned, and Gabe’s position that religion and the paranormal are simply magic tricks is soon put to the test.


The first thing that separates Nocturne from lesser films in the same genre is the depth the characters have been given.  The history between the six friends (as a group and on a one-on-one basis) is laid out slowly and without any heavy-handedness.  And additional personal histories are cleverly dropped now and then.  Everybody has their own secrets, their own disappointments, their own plans for the future.  Some of the interesting details are important to the rest of the film, and some aren’t…which makes the characters that much better since we learn about them without it necessarily pointing us towards future scenes.


The second thing which makes Nocturne a success is the clever plot.  This isn’t a tired 90 minutes of “make you jump” clichés; there’s real intelligence in the writing, and the characters stay true to themselves in their actions.  Plus the depth of their development keeps them from being the cut-out generic film cast.  But be warned: if you just want to see a bunch of blood and gore and you don’t want to think or pay some attention to a film, Nocturne *is not* for you.


Lastly there’s the strength of the performances.  All of the actors do a better-than-expected job.  Jo and Gabe have the most meat on their plates, but they handle it well.  Hailey Nebeker as Maren is the unexpected stand-out.  From the first moment she is introduced you forget she is an actress playing a role; she’s Maren.  The smooth and seamless natural subtleties show she is really in touch with her character, beyond what is in the script.  Plus she gets a few fun moments to show off her craft.


Keep an eye out for Nocturne (which I backed in a small way on Kickstarter).  It’s worth your time.  It’s always a treat when a film I back on Kickstarter exceeds expectations, and Nocturne far surpasses what I hoped it would be.


The 1960’s or 1970’s or 1980’s or 1990’s – Any Leftovers


Howard Bishop – For the 1980’s, Juju by Siouxsie & The Banshees.


The 2000’s – Second Set of Five


Doug Kent – A Fine Frenzy - One Cell in the Sea

Grace Pettis - Grace Pettis

Caroline Herring - Golden Apples of the Sun

Heather Masse - Bird Song

Neko Case - Middle Cyclone


Steve Cooley - Mudcrutch, Mudcrutch


Unleashed, Toby Keith


The Live Anthology, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers This is kind of cheating, but it’s too good to pass up.


The Rising, Bruce Springsteen. So many songs on this album capture the post-9/11 sadness. Easily his best work since Nebraska, imnsho.


All That You Can’t Leave Behind, U2. This album, for me, cemented the band’s place as an essential voice of hope in an increasingly cynical world.


Joshua Danker-Dake - Therion, “Gothic Kabbalah” – It’s less choir-driven and more traditionally metal than their previous work, but it’s still quintessentially Therion.


Blind Guardian, “A Twist in the Myth” – It’s their most atypical album in the last 25 years. The BG purists hated it because it’s not way too busy like the previous album.


Nightwish, “Wishmaster” – They didn’t come any bigger or more bombastic than this one. Nightwish dominated this decade, and this was the apex.


Angra, “Temple of Shadows”


Excalion, “Waterlines”


Andrew Goff - 5. “Ladyhawke” by Ladyhawke


4. “Oracular Spectacular” by MGMT


3. “Empire” by Kasabian


2. “Back To Black” by Amy Winehouse


1. “Hot Fuss” by The Killers


How does Radiohead not fit in this list? How does Green Day, Eminem, or Beyoncé not make it? There’s cruelty in who misses out here, with pop and even long established artists just… missed. Poor U2… remember when they were good? Depeche Mode released their best album in 2001 and it can’t make my top 10. Arcade Fire and Belle And Sebastian both miss out and their successes were arguably defining for the second half of the decade. The list could go on and on… Kanye, The Strokes, Muse, Bloc Party… What a superb decade of music.


Martin Burgdorf - 2005 SINFONYE: The Courts of Love


This is music from the time of Eleanor of Aquitaine,one of the most fascinating women of the middle ages. 


2006 Pere Ubu: Why I Hate Women


The name of the band was inspired by "Père Ubu" by Alfred Jarry - an obscene nonsense play. Jarry also developed pataphysics, "the science of imaginary solutions, which symbolically attributes the properties of objects, described by their virtuality, to their lineaments"


2007 Bryan Ferry: Dylanesque


Bryan Ferry is the singer of Roxy Music. "Dylanesque" contains cover versions of songs by Dylan only. They are all better than the originals. Unlike Mick Jagger, Bryan Ferry has grown old in dignity.


2008 Mark Stewart: Edit


Mark Stewart is the singer of the Pop Group. He is politically very active, for example Anti Fracking. His latest record is "EXORCISM OF ENVY", which is even much better than "Edit", but could not be included in this list, because it was issued after 2010.


2009 Herb Alpert & Lani Hall: ANYTHING GOES


I end this list like I began it: with a jazz record. For this round, it became increasingly difficult to identify really great albums. The golden age of rock lasted almost half a century, now it is over.


FYI – The only people who are up-to-date with all their selections from the 60’s through the 2000’s are myself, Martin Burgdorf, Andrew Goff, Steve Cooley, and Joshua Danker-Dake.


Deadline for the ONLY set of 5 Albums from 2010 to date is August 30th 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


Kevin Wilson:

Agent Colson in Novosibirsk


Andy Lischett:

Little Richard in Ürümqi in the Gobi Desert


Rick Desper:

Mickey Rooney in Passamaquoddy, Maine


Richard Weiss:

Oliver Cromwell in Brasilia, Brazil


Andy York:

Heather Taylor in Mesquite, TX


Hank Alme:

Hank Alme in Ellicott City, MD

Tom Howell:

Jose Echegaray y Eizaguirre in Ashkhabad, Turkmenistan


Brendan Whyte:

Hereward the Wake on Wake Island


John David Galt:

Randy Johnson (the baseball player) in Quito, Ecuador


Jack Mchugh:

Ulysses S. Grant in Beijing, China


Jim Burgess:

Toshiro Mifune in Kyoto, Japan


Mark Firth:

Nastassja Kinski in Paris, Texas


Clue to Person with Closest Guess:

We are both dead, but we knew each other in life.


Turn 2



Tom Howell:

Henry Mancini in Paris, France


Andy York:

Queen Victoria in Manila, Philippines


Rick Desper:

Ava Gardner in Dublin, Ireland


Brendan Whyte:

King Charles I swimming in sewerage in the 100m breast stroke, and the getting mugged in the marathon in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil


Hank Alme:

Charles Darwin in Copenhagen, Denmark


Richard Weiss:

Sammy Davis, Jr. in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada


Andy Lischett:

Robert E. Lee in Hanoi, Vietnam


Dane Maslen:

Abraham Lincoln in Chengdu, China


Mark Firth:

Shirley Temple in St John's, Newfoundland


Kevin Wilson:

Cardinal Richeleau in Montevideo Uruguay


Jim Burgess:

Robert E. Lee in Lhasa, Tibet


John David Galt:

Frankie Valli in Beijing, China


Clue to Person with Closest Guess:

Similar professions, and exactly the right location.


Deadline for Round 3 is August 30th at 7am My Time




By Larry Peery



Ponders the question: Music or Diplomacy; if you had to pick one which would it be?

This essay is about two of my favorite subjects: music and Diplomacy. In some ways it is quite simple but in others it requires some serious thinking and more than a few trips to the internet.  I urge you to take the time to check out the links to various articles and videos. I think you’ll find them both educational and enjoyable. At least I hope so.



Ponders the question: How does one achieve perfection in music or Diplomacy?

Perfection in music will be discussed below. Here’s my process for achieving peerifection in Diplomacy in very simple terms:

The Quest: Finding the right path for you, taking it and sticking to it is impeeritive  (OK, no more, I promise.)Too many Dippers can’t make up their minds about where they want to go in the game or hobby; which explains why they never get there.

The Victory/ The Championship: Battles (losses and wins) gradually give way to defeats and victories and then to championships: Early losses lead to later wins. It took me 30 years to achieve my only championship. It took Edi 25 years, give or take, to win his first championship. It took Toby 14 years to win his first championship.  And so it gets.

The Revolutionary: The Road Less Chosen: Most Dippers follow the tried and true path in their search for perfection from their local group to regional events and then on to national events and the world championships if they can. Others, on the other hand, find their way to perfection in other ways by following “the road less chosen” and “marching to their own drum”: as writers, editors, publishers, custodians, etc.

The Icon/Fame: That transitory moment of glory. The fame of winning a championship brings with it a certain iconic status that may prove fleeting or lasting, depending on what path the Dipper then follows in his search for perfection.

The Legend that endures: As time passes and successes pile up a Dipper can move up the perfection ladder to legendary status in the hobby. At that point he is often referred to as an “Old Fart” regardless of his physical age.

It is important, I think, to clearly understand the difference between a “legend” and an “icon.” It’s not a difficult concept but it is a subtle one. Most experts agree on these points:  “Legend and icon are two key terms that are used for a person who is famous for his extraordinary characteristics or talent. Legend is generally associated with people who have sustained their fame or charm for a very long time. However, icon is generally used for a person who has gained a lot of fame especially in a particular field, and the person itself becomes a representation of the field, style, etc. in which he has proved his worth. Legend is generally associated with people who are no longer alive, whereas icon is used for living glorified persons. However, both can be  used interchangeably.”

The Perfectionist: The “Pinnacle of Perfection” is achieved when it all comes together and there is nothing further for the Dipper to do except continue down the path of perfection.  I summarize this as being “completely natural, technically precise and poetically perfect.”



Ponders the question: What made each group, musicians or Dippers,  perfect?

Musicians and Dippers are both people on a quest for perfection in their art. Beyond that they don’t have much in common.  All of these people are written up in Wiki, or The Diplomacy Archives or, rarely, both.

Cole Porter: wrote the  lyrics and music for “Kiss Me Kate” based on Shakespeare’s “The Taming of The Shrew” in 1953. He was an icon in his time and is a musical legend today. I mention him because his musical “Kiss Me Kate” is one of my favorites and it came to mind when I was thinking about Kathy Byrne-Caruso and Katharine Passenheim, two rare early Diplomacy female greats. Kathy is definitely a legend, at least among those who knew her. Katherine wasn’t as well known but in the early San Diego Diplomacy days she was known for her killer femme fatale skills.

Kiss Me Kate by Cole Porter in 1953 based on The Taming of a Shrew by Shakespeare.  (BBC Proms Broadcast complete)

Petula Clark: At 80 and still active is not only a musical icon but also a living legend with a career that goes back to early WWII. After a long string of successes starting in the 1960s today her songs, many written with collaborator Tony Hatch, are being featured  in her own new musical . “Sign of the Times.”

Robert Viagas wrote a story on the project in the 28 June, 2016, issue of Playbill.

For more about the show:  (theater opened in 1963)  it’s a musical about a young girl’s rise from innocence to experience featuring the songs of Pet Clark and her times. Opening night is 29 July, 2013. Opening night ticket and drink for $44. At Terris Theater in Chester, CT. trying out for a shot at Broadway? Cindy will be played by Ephie Aardema 

Petula Clark

Petula Clark

Here are some of the songs used in the show, along with the artist who recorded them and who wrote them:

“Color My World,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Yvonne J. Harvey and Tony Hatch
“I Couldn’t Live Without Your Love,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Yvonne J. Harvey and Tony Hatch
“I Only Want To Be With You,” Sung by Dusty Springfield, Written by Michael Edwin Hawker and Ivor Raymonde
“The Other Man’s Grass Is Always Greener,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Yvonne J. Harvey and Tony Hatch
“I Know A Place,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Tony Hatch
“Round Every Corner,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Tony Hatch
“Baby The Rain Must Fall,” Sung by Glenn Yarbrough, Written by Elmer Bernstein and Ernie Sheldon

“Call Me,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Tony Hatch
“These Boots Are Made For Walkin',” Sung by Nancy Sinatra, Written by Lee Hazlewood
“If I Can Dream,” Sung by Elvis Presley, Written by Earl Brown
“Who Am I,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Yvonne J. Harvey and Tony Hatch
“The In Crowd,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Billy Page
“A Sign Of The Times,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Tony Hatch
“Don't Sleep In The Subway,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Yvonne J. Harvey and Tony Hatch

“You'd Better Come Home,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Tony Hatch
“You Don't Own Me,” Sung by Lesley Gore, Written by John Madara and David White
“Kiss Me Goodbye,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by John Barry Mason and Leslie David Reed
“Downtown,” Sung by Petula Clark, Written by Tony Hatch

Rewrite those titles and lyrics to give them a Dip note and lyrics.


Nadia Comaneci: From Innocence to Experience. At age 54 she still looks great. She and her coach Bella Karolyi are in Montreal, Canada right now helping celebrate her iconic and legendary performance in gymnastics, including that famous perfect 10 score in the uneven bars,  at  the Olympics there 40 years ago.

Ponders the question: Is “grace under pressure” attainable in music and Diplomacy?

You can read more of her inspirational  story at:


(Photo: PAUL VATHIS, Associated Press)  1976

Nadia Comaneci and Bella Karolyi at the U.S.  Olympic

Nadia Comaneci and Bella Karolyi at the U.S. Olympic gymnastics trials. (Photo: Kyle Terada, USA TODAY Sports) 2016

After you read the story you may or may not agree with my assessment that she is the only true perfectionist among the icons and legends discussed here, but she’s definitely a contender.

For the record the music used in her perfect performance was a heavy, rhythmic bass of no known origin.

Richard Kiley: The 43 year old discovery with a Tony already on his shelf for Kismet (“This is My Beloved”), starred in the 1965 original musical “The Man of La Mancha”, its 1972 revival, its third 1977 revival, and countless tour performances in The Americas and Europe; had a room full of awards, the lights were turned out on Broadway in his memory when he died, and a Star on Sunset Blvd. has his name on it. Kiley is a legend now deceased.  Dale Wasserman wrote the book after Cervantes) , Mitch Leigh composed the(music, and JoeDarion penned the lyrics.

Ponders the question:  Is there anyone who doesn’t know at least some of the lyrics and tunes to this classic?

There’s not a lot I can say about “The Quest: Impossible Dream”. The words speak eloquently to the Dipper in any language in any country at any time.

The Quest: Impossible Dream, from Man of La Mancha Man of La Mancha - The Impossible Dream (The Quest)  Redacted Lyrics (used with permission)

To dream the impossible dream
To fight the unbeatable foe
To bear with unbearable sorrow
To run where the brave dare not go

To right the unrightable wrong
To love pure and chaste from afar
To try when your arms are too weary
To reach the unreachable star

This is my quest to follow that star
No matter how hopeless, no matter how far
To fight for the right without question or pause
To be willing to march into Hell for a heavenly cause

And I know if I'll only be true to this glorious quest
That my heart will lie peaceful and calm when I'm laid to my rest

And the world will be better for this
That one man, scorned and covered with scars
Still strove with his last ounce of courage
To reach the unreachable star  

Queen (Freddie Mercury and Brian May): for “We Are the Champions. Band formed in 1970. Both are champions and icons. Deceased and  not.

Ponders the question: Is a tragic end or survival more important to becoming an icon or a legend? Or, is there anyone reading this who hasn’t sung this anthem?

Again, this is an iconic work that has become an anthem to an entire generation of Dippers, as well as anyone in any field in search of perfection. 

"We Are The Champions" Redacted lyrics (used with permission)

I've paid my dues
Time after time.
I've done my sentence
But committed no crime.
And bad mistakes ‒
I've made a few.
I've had my share of sand kicked in my face
But I've come through.

(And I need just go on and on, and on, and on)

We are the champions, my friends,
And we'll keep on fighting 'til the end.
We are the champions.
We are the champions.
No time for losers
'Cause we are the champions of the world.

I've taken my bows
And my curtain calls
You brought me fame and fortune and everything that goes with it
I thank you all

But it's been no bed of roses,
No pleasure cruise.
I consider it a challenge before the whole human race
And I ain't gonna lose.

(And I need just go on and on, and on, and on)


Nirvana (Kurt Cobain):  ) Fame made Kurt Cobain an icon. Death made him a legend. “ Smells Like a Teen Spirit” in 1991 was one of his biggest hits. It reminds me of both Toby and me in our younger days.

Ponders the question: Is Nirvana a state of the mind or  a place on the Diplomacy board, perhaps in Belgium?

Larry Peery: After 50+ years still going. WDC Team title in 1997, Goteborg, Sweden.  Chose “The Road Not Chosen to become a revolutionary Old Fart: went from a visionary of the future to a defender of the fates (anti-clocks and anti-arbitrary game endings).

Toby Harris: After 40+ years still going strong: One of the few Diplomacy trifecta winners: first played in 1976, national title (Manorcon, 1990), Euro DipCon title (Bedford, UK, 1998), World DipCon title (Milan, Italy, 2015). Finally, a real champion, but not yet an icon.  (done by a London researcher for Toby)

Nirvana's "Smells Like Teen Spirit" took the number one spot as the most iconic song of all time in one study, at least in the UK. (video of Smells Like Teen Spirit)

Some comments on the lyrics and interpretation:

The lyrics to "Smells Like Teen Spirit" were often difficult for listeners to decipher, both due to their nonsensicality and because of Cobain's slurred, guttural singing. The 'Teen Spirit' reveals its secrets reluctantly and then often incoherently.

"Teen Spirit" is widely interpreted to be a teen revolution anthem. It also has kind of a teen revolutionary theme." "a typically murky Cobain exploration of meaning and meaninglessness.

Cobain has said, "The entire song is made up of contradictory ideas. It's just making fun of the thought of having a revolution. But it's a nice thought." song has a lot to say about something. You need syllables to fill up this space or you need something that rhymes."

Sounds like a peerfect example of Peeriblah to me.


Time: Legend of a Mind (Moody Blues) 1968

Ponders the question: Is “spaced out” in music the same thing as “in a space” in Diplomacy?


“Legend of a Mind” is a song by the British progressive rock band The Moody Blues.and was written by the band's flautist Ray Thomas, who provides the lead vocals. "Legend of a Mind" was recorded in January 1968 and was first released on the Moody Blues' album “In Search of the Lost Chord.”

The song's lyrics are about 1960s LSD icon Timothy Leary who was an advocate for the use of LSD, enjoying its spiritual benefits, with one of his catchphrases being “Turn on, tune in, drop out.”

“Legend of a Mind” is perhaps best known for its opening lines: "Timothy Leary's dead / No, n-n-no he's outside looking in", which allude to Leary's use of eastern mysticism (most notably the “Tibetan Book of the Dead”) to frame the psychedelic experience.

The song's lyrics describe both Leary and the effects of LSD, such as:

“He'll fly his astral plane, Takes you trips around the bay, Brings you back the same day.

“He'll take you up, He'll bring you down. He'll plant your feet back firmly on the ground.

“He flies so high, He swoops so low. He knows exactly which way he's gonna go.”

Sounds just like Edi, don’t you think?


Nadia (Reprise):  Nadia     Nadia by Jeff Beck)

(Nithin Sawhney originally composed this song , Nadia in Grand Indian Raga 'Des'  Perfection  From the Quest to Perfection describes its Diplomacy relationship perfectly.

Ponders the question: Has perfection been attained in music or Diplomacy?

Her 3 minute + performance on the uneven bars and Beck’s version of Nadia (3:11 vs. 3:51) equals 7 minutes of visual and aural perfection, although I doubt if Beck was thinking of the gymnast when he wrote his version.

In Diplomacy the answer isn’t quite so obvious. Given the difference in championship tournament rules in the United States and Europe it is quite likely that there have been some “perfect” championships (e.g. 18-center wins) in the USA and it is just as unlikely that there have been any in Europe. Neither Edi nor I could think of any WDC championships won with an 18-center win on the Top Board, although there have been 18-center wins in various rounds.



The Unanswered Question   was composed by American composer Charles Ives in 1906 and The Unanswered Questions Answered  was composed by American composer Peter Schickle) in 2017. (video performance)  6:07 minutes

Leonard Bernstein at Harvard in 1973: 1:43:00 lectures  on The Unanswered Question

For Diplomates it’s up to you to find your own path to perfection and answer these questions for yourself. Good luck.



ZERO SUM3     Subzine to Eternal Sunshine    Issue 15    24 July 2016


Published by Richard Weiss. 


GM Musings: 

Well, Hillary was not indicted.  Donald chose Pence.  Hillary chose Kaine, which fit with my longstanding prediction that the candidate had to have been elected to both State and Federal office and not be a Senator from a state with a Republican Governor.  Debbie Wasserman-Schultz, never one of my favorites, is gone. 


I was in Vermont for a week.  Had a family reunion to honor my Father’s death and also to scatter his ashes.  A few went in Lake Champlain and most went under a maple tree in the side yard of the house I grew up in but is now owned by another.  Never having seen nor handled ashes before, I was surprised by the solemnness I felt.  There is a little irony that his ashes are between where my Mother’s ashes were placed and where his Mother-in-Law’s ashes were placed. 


I built a rough structure, approximately cord size, to house my cut and dried wood for the winter.  I’ve already split almost enough pine and cut enough oak to fill it.  I was a whiz at splitting maple and other wood as an early teenager.   Somehow, hitting the mall on the wedge is not something that comes back as easily as riding a bicycle.  Great exercise. 


ZeroSumCubed deadline for Issue 16 is THE SUNDAY BEFORE Doug’s deadline.  

That is, before 8 AM, CA time, Sunday  28 August 2016. (I am presuming)




1)     Brexit Dip

a.      Essentially regular Diplomacy but only six players, no England, the only Supply Center in England will be Edinburgh (they voted to stay in), all map spaces are in play, and start country is by bidding. 

b.     This game will be Gunboat Brexit with Press

c.      The other oddity will be that each player will have sixty (60) Euros at the start of the game.  Each player can distribute the Euros any way they want in bidding for start country.  After the start countries are determined, the Euros have no further purpose or role in the game. 

                                                    i.     I, being the European Central Bank, want the most Euros possible from the bidding.  So, if each person has a unique start country, then each gets their first choice.  If there is a tie for Euros bid for a Start Country, then whatever combination results in the greatest yield for me, is how countries will be decided.  If there is a tie for greatest sum, then one of the ties will be randomly selected.  (This is similar to the Least Sum method when players rank their choices for start country with 1 being the most preferred start, but rather than least sum this is Greatest Sum since the highest number is the most preferred and was discussed by Andy Lischett in the last issue of Eternal Sunshine)

d.     The first six interested in Brexit Dip, please send me your name and how you want to distribute your 60 Euros in bidding for start country. 

e.      Number signed up =


2)     Intimate Dip with one week deadlines (Rules at the bottom of this Issue)

a.      Sunday morning deadlines are when NMRs count, can be adjudicated faster

b.     Need two

c.      Any number of games can start this turn

d.     Signed up:


3)     Intimate Dip with two week deadlines (Rules are at the bottom of this Issue)

a.      Sunday morning deadlines are when NMRs count, can be adjudicated faster

b.     Need two

c.      Any number of games can start this turn

d.     Signed up:






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


Eddie Chapman ("ZigZag") infiltrated the German Abwehr

 during World War II whilst feeding intelligence to MI5. He was so trusted by the Germans that he is reportedly the only British citizen to have ever been awarded the Iron Cross.


Fall 1903 Orders


A Gascony Supports A Marseilles

[[F London - North Sea]]

[[A Marseilles Supports A Paris – Burgundy]] Cut

A Paris - Burgundy



German Army Warsaw holds

German Army Burgundy to Belgium

German Army Munich to Ruhr

[[German Fleet Denmark to Edinburgh]] (no such unit)

German Fleet North Sea – not ordered


English Fleet Norwegian Sea to North Atlantic Ocean

English Army Edinburg to Clyde


Italian Army Apulia to Naples

[[Italian Army Piedmont to Marseilles]]

Italian Fleet Tyrrhenian Sea to Gulf of Lyon


Russian Army Livonia to Saint Petersburg

Russian Army Moscow holds

[[Russian Fleet Baltic Sea to Finland]] (No such unit)

Russian Fleet Gulf of Bothnia (Not ordered)


Turkish Army Rumania holds

Turkish Fleet Black Sea to Constantinople

Turkish Army Sevastopol holds

Turkish Fleet Aegean Sea to Ionian Sea

Turkish Fleet Eastern Mediterranean supports Turkish Fleet Aegean Sea to Ionian Sea


Mercenaries in Chaos


Army Vienna

Army Budapest

Fleet Trieste



France – Germany: Maybe someday, but not this season


Next Orders are for Winter 1903 (builds/removals)


Supply Center Control

Austria: Budapest, Trieste, Vienna = 3

England: Edinburgh, Liverpool = 2

France: Brest, Marseilles, Paris, London = 4

Germany: Berlin, Kiel, Munich, Den, + Warsaw, + Belgium = 6, may add two

Italy: Naples, Rome, Venice = 3

Russia: Moscow, St. Petersburg, - Warsaw, - Rumania = 2, must destroy one

Turkey: Ankara, Constantinople, Smyrna, Bulgaria, Sevastopol, + Rumania = 6, must add one


New Year Eve 1904 Bids (not due yet, only a reminder)

Doug carries 4 forward and has 4 SC so = 8.  Harold carries 1 forward, has 6 SC, so = 7.



Doug’s Bid (has 8 )

Harold’s Bid (has 7 )

Controller of Country








The original Intimate Dip was created by Adrian Baird and Steve Doubleday

Via Geoff Kemp and his subzine “Tween,” with some minor edits


Intimate Diplomacy (ID) is a two-player variant.  Each player controls one country (his or her “Home” country) for the entire game.  The remaining five countries are known as “mercenaries.” 

1.       The official rules of Diplomacy apply except where amended below.

2.      To determine home countries, each player submits a preference list of seven countries. If their first choices are different, both players get their first choice.  If their first choices are the same, but their second choices are different, then both players get their second choice.  If the second choices are identical then each gets their third choice etc. If both preference lists are identical then the GM draws lots and the first player gets first choice and the second player chooses his or her choice from the remaining countries. 

3.      At the start of the game, the two home countries each receive a credit balance.  The credit balance for each home country is determined from the chart below:

a.      E,F,R, &/or T = 20 credits;

b.      G = 22 credits; and,

c.      A &/or I = 24 credits.

The difference in the starting credits is to even out the relative strength of the countries.

4.      The five countries not “home” countries are called “mercenary” countries.  Control of the mercenaries is determined each game year by “bids.”  The first bidding season occurs New Year’s Eve 1901; and, thereafter, bids to control the mercenaries happen on the New Year’s Eve turn, which is between each Winter and Spring season.  Bids are sent to the GM, who reveals the bids.  The highest bidder for each country has the size of the bid deducted from their credit balance and gains control of the country for the following year – including winter adjustments.

5.      Credits are awarded following each Fall season.  Each player is given one credit for each SC owned by his home country. (E.g. if your home country controls 10 SCs, 10 credits are added to your credit balance.)  These credits are added to the credit balance.

6.      Players are permitted to bid more than their credit will cover.  However, if a player successfully bids more credits than they hold, they lose their entire credit balance.  Also their opponent gains control of all countries the opponent bid for.  Note, this is different than my previous rules.  No one has yet overbid because the previous penalty was too severe.   

7.      When bids for a country are equal, neither player controls it and it is treated as if in Anarchy for the year.  The units do not move, cannot support, and cannot be ordered.  Neither player loses credits when the bids are equal.

8.      Play is carried out as in regular Diplomacy, with each player submitting orders and retreats for the countries that they control.  In the Winter season, all builds due to mercenary countries must be taken if possible. 

9.      If the player controlling a Mercenary country fails to order the builds that country is due, the GM will build armies, alphabetically by home center spelling (Fleets for England).  If a Mercenary country fails to order removals off the board (disbandments) the GM will remove units by distance from a home center and fleets before armies if tied (for all but England, which removes armies before fleets).  In case of ties, the GM will disband randomly from those equidistant.

10.   The sequence of play during one game-year is

a.      New Year’s Eve Bids

b.      Spring Orders 

c.      Summer retreats or removals AND Fall Orders

d.      Autumn moves and retreats AND Winter builds and disbandments.

(Separation of Summer AND Fall or Autumn AND Winter is on one player’s (non-frivolous) request.)

11.    Victory Criterion: The game ends when one player occupies one of the opponent’s home SCs with a unit from his or her home country, no matter the season.  Eg, if Germany is playing France and takes Marseille with an Italian army it controls that year, that does not end the game.  A German unit would have to take a French Home Supply Center to win.

12.   If both players occupy an opponent’s home SC(s) simultaneously, then the player occupying the most home SCs of the opponent wins (with the exception that occupying 4 Russian SCs is no better than owning 3 of another country’s home SCs).  If a tie remains, the game is won by the player with the largest credit balance (counting credits awarded during the season in which the home centers were invaded, whether Spring or Fall).  If a tie still remains, the game goes one more game year, and so on, when all of the above criteria are again considered.

13.   A game may develop into a stalemate situation once all neutral and mercenary countries have been eliminated.  In this case, the winner is the player with the most supply centers.  Note, a game does not end just because one country reaches 18 SCs. 

14.    Concessions may be proposed and accepted, at any time.

15.    True to the premises of Zero Sum as a game theory and as a subzine, no draws are allowed. 




Game Openings

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

Balkan Wars VI (Black Press): Rules and map in ES #113.  Fast-paced Balkan variant, great fun and no season separations allowed. Signed up: Brad Wilson, Jack McHugh, Larry Peery, needs 3 more.

Where in the World is Kendo Nagasaki: Rules in ES #113.  Send in your guesses.  Prize for the winner?  Probably!

By Almost Popular Demand: Started in #112.  Join in!  Same as BPD but the #1 answer in each category gets zero points. Send in your guesses.  Prize for the winner?  Probably! 

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

Dune: To be GM’d by Roger Cox.  Signed up: Kevin Wilson, Doug Kent, Martin Burgdorf, Jack McHugh, John David Galt, one more would be optimal.  Sign up NOW!!  You can sign up with me. 

Eternal Sunshine Game Section


Diplomacy, “Milk and Trash”, 2015A, F 07


Austria (Jack McHugh – jwmchughjr “of” F Ankara – Constantinople, A Armenia – Ankara,

 A Bohemia - Munich (*Fails*), A Rumania – Galicia, A Serbia Hold, A Silesia Supports A Bohemia – Munich,

 A Trieste Supports A Tyrolia, A Tyrolia Supports A Bohemia - Munich (*Cut*).

England (Mark Firth – mogcate “of” F English Channel Supports F Irish Sea - Mid-Atlantic Ocean,

 F Gulf of Lyon Supports F Western Mediterranean - Tyrrhenian Sea, F Holland Supports F North Sea,

 F Irish Sea - Mid-Atlantic Ocean, A London – Norway, F North Africa - Tunis (*Fails*),

 F North Sea Convoys A London – Norway, A Smyrna Supports F Ankara – Constantinople,

 F Western Mediterranean - Tyrrhenian Sea.

Germany (Jim Burgess – jfburgess “of” F Baltic Sea Supports A Prussia,

 A Berlin Supports A Munich, A Burgundy Supports A Munich, F Livonia - St Petersburg(sc),

 A Munich Supports A Piedmont - Tyrolia (*Cut*), A Piedmont - Tyrolia (*Fails*), A Portugal Hold, A Prussia Hold.

Italy (John Biehl – jerbil “of” NMR! F Aegean Sea Hold, F Ionian Sea Hold, F Tunis Hold,

 A Tuscany Hold, F Tyrrhenian Sea Hold (*Dislodged*, retreat to Naples or Rome or OTB), F Venice Hold.

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


Turkey (John David Galt – jdg “of” F Eastern Mediterranean Supports

 A Smyrna.


I am asking Andy York (wandrew88 “of” to stand by for Italy

Deadline for W 07/S 08 is August 30th at 7am my time



Supply Center Chart


Austria:            Ankara, Budapest, Constantinople, Rumania, Serbia, Sevastopol, Trieste, Vienna=8, Even

England:          Brest, Denmark, Edinburgh, Holland, Liverpool, London, Norway, Smyrna, Spain=9, Even

Germany:         Belgium, Berlin, Kiel, Marseilles, Munich, Paris, Portugal, St Petersburg, Sweden=9, Build 1

Italy:                Bulgaria, Greece, Naples, Rome, Tunis, Venice=6, Even or Build 1

Russia:             Moscow, Warsaw=2, Build 1

Turkey:            None=0, OUT!




(BOOB to DOUG): More illness, still behind on music lists, but at least I got orders in!!!


GM – Boob: More than some can say!

Black Press Gunboat, “Noah’s Titanic”, 2015Arb32, W 07/S 08


Austria: A Galicia - Ukraine (*Fails*), A Moscow – Sevastopol, A Prussia – Warsaw,

 A Rumania Supports A Galicia - Ukraine (*Cut*), A Trieste - Vienna (*Fails*), A Tyrolia - Bohemia (*Fails*),

 A Vienna - Galicia (*Bounce*).

England: F London Supports F English Channel - North Sea (*Void*), F Wales - Liverpool (*Bounce*).

France: A Burgundy Supports A Spain – Marseilles, F English Channel - Mid-Atlantic Ocean (*Dislodged*,

 retreat to Picardy or Irish Sea or OTB), F Mid-Atlantic Ocean - Spain(sc), A Picardy – Brest, A Spain - Marseilles.

Germany: F Baltic Sea Supports A Berlin, F Belgium - English Channel, A Berlin Supports A Munich,

 F Clyde - Liverpool (*Bounce*), A Holland – Belgium, A Munich Supports A Silesia – Bohemia,

 F North Sea Supports F Belgium - English Channel, A Ruhr Supports A Holland – Belgium, A Silesia – Bohemia,

 F St Petersburg(nc) Hold.

Italy: F Aegean Sea Hold, F Apulia Supports A Venice, A Armenia Supports A Rumania - Sevastopol (*Void*),

 A Bulgaria - Rumania (*Fails*), F Gulf of Lyon Supports A Spain – Marseilles,

 A Piedmont Supports A Spain – Marseilles, F Tunis - North Africa, A Venice Supports A Trieste - Tyrolia (*Void*),

 F Western Mediterranean - Mid-Atlantic Ocean (*Bounce*).

Turkey: A Ukraine - Galicia (*Bounce*).


Deadline for F 08 will be August 30th at 7am My Time





Germany to GM: Interesting.  Everyone is “even-Steven” this turn!  Lots of positioning for the next year is going on.


Germany to France: I have been telling you that Italy is going to attack.  Good luck holding on, one wrong move and Italy will be all over you like a wet blanket.


Germany to Turkey: Still alive, I see!  Congratulations!


France to Germany: Well, if you are my friend, you didn’t cut Bur, right? Right???


French Embassy to Vatican: Hey, ah, I think you might be the heathen tyrant! Lo siento!


Aus - Italy: I'll get him this year! Then I can move away from Rum and you can move away from Bul (Con or convoy).


World to Broadcast from Paris: That’s a bit dramatic, ain’t it? I mean get a grip!


Paris to Radio Critic: Ya know what? It’s not as easy to be a brilliant orator as it appears. Try it before you turn critic.


Vatican - French Embassy: Blessings on your valiant rally against the heathen. You will see that we are here with you to lend aid in all its forms. Expect full support for your forces defending your homeland and please allow us passage through the ocean to offer further succour in the North. There shall be no Germans in your cities


Pope Pluvius - Europe: For those who doubt the supportive nature of the Church, look to our orders this time


Pope Pluvius - Cardinal Byrd: Who was that man you were talking to in the shadows?


Insider - Germany: Pssst, not really s'posed to, y'know, talk wich you but word has it that the Big P is planning a six fleet convoy if he can get the French to play ball. Now, you like that sorta thing, maybe you could see your way to, y'know, quit Brussels?


Italy - Austria: Let's see how this plays out. If you are in Sev and Rum is bare, I'll stand you out in the Fall but cover Sev. If I'm in Rum, support me to Ukr or Gal if the Turkish army is there. If it's in Mos/War I'll leave that to you and shift back to Bul. The bottom line is getting rid of the rogue army this time: if I end up getting the extra SC, it's annoying but we'll readjust easily next year. I don't need more redundant units - I need Austrian allies on the front line.


Italy - Germany: Good analysis! Glad you agreed about a fleet in Mid-Atlantic.


Papal Envoy - Tripping Turk: Kyiv - that's a nice place! Why not set up home here?


Pierre - Jean: So, let's try this one last time to see if I have it right. The enemy of my enemy is my friend?


Jean - Pierre: [finishing wine] Oui.


Pierre - Jean: And the former enemy of my friend is now a watched neutral?


Jean - Pierre: [Gallic shrug] ...Oui.


Pierre - Jean: But then... I am still not quite sure about the enemy of the enemy of my friend who was once my strong ally but then stabbed me before circumstances made us uneasy partners whilst continuing to squander forces on our borders.


Pierre: [distant stare]


Jean - Pierre: Ca suffit! Let's go fight somebody.


Pierre - Jean: [leaping] Si!


By Almost Popular Demand


The goal is to pick something that fits the category and will be the "second 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. However, the most popular answer in each category scores zero points!  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 3 Categories


1.    A red fruit.

2.    A religion.

3.    A sport played with a ball.

4.    Something you find in a sewing kit.

5.    A sci-fi television show, past or present.


Congrats to Andy York who pulled the high score of 20 (out of a possible 27).  Steve Cooley brought up the rear with a mere 4 points, hitting two of the zero point answers.


Comments By Category


Red Fruit – Rick Desper “Watermelon.  The part you eat is red, after all.”  Brendan Whyte “Pomegranate. The king of fruit.”  Dane Maslen “Will anyone choose to answer 'tomato'?”  Jim Burgess “Probably Apple will be OK since everyone will avoid it.”


Religion – Brendan Whyte “Jedi. Popular on British census forms.”  Jim Burgess “This one will be a weird one with lots of second guessing.  If Jewish wins I'll kick myself.”


Sport – Dane Maslen “FIELD HOCKEY (as I Brit I would normally refer to this as 'hockey', but as an American you would understand that to mean 'ice hockey' and would think I'd taken leave of my senses as it uses a puck rather than a ball).”


Sci-Fi – Brendan Whyte “Sapphire and Steel (Joanna Lumley? Wooah!)”


Round 4 Categories


1.    A deli meat.

2.    A brand of automobile tire.

3.    Something you wear two of at once.

4.    A character on the TV show The Simpsons.

5.    A Western/Cowboy television show, past or present.


Deadline for Round 4 of By Almost Popular Demand is August 30th, 2016 at 7am my time.


General Deadline for the Next Issue of Eternal Sunshine:  August 30th, 2016 at 7:00am my time.  Hope to See You Then!