Eternal Sunshine #155

April 2022

By Douglas Kent - 911 Irene Drive, Mesquite, TX  75149


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Quote of The Month“Please put down your weapon. You have twenty seconds to comply.” - (ED-209 in “Robocop”)


Welcome to Eternal Sunshine, the official zine of…of nothing.  The zine of nothing. 


Okay it can’t be of nothing.  The official zine of weirdos who hear music in their head 24/7 and post to Facebook each morning “song in my head when I woke up” based on whatever song was most prominent at that moment.  Often it isn’t a song I can instantly recognize, and sometimes it is a song that I hate.  But I’ve done it for over three years, for no reason other than I’ve been doing it so I keep doing it.


The official zine of routine and habit.


Not a lot to talk about, as usual.  I’ve been experiencing some car trouble lately, for the first time in a number of years.  My car has less than 80,000 miles on it despite being over nine years old.  There was an intermittent starting issue, where it wouldn’t start and sometimes wouldn’t register anything o the tachometer when I was able to get it to turn over after those occasional failures.  It was diagnosed as a bad Crankshaft Position Sensor, which is a part that goes bad frequently on Hyundai vehicles (so I am told).  I was skeptical, but since it was replaced, I haven’t had that problem any longer.  I also needed to replace a tie rod with a leaking boot, and that part had to be ordered.  No complaints; it only took a few days, while I hear horror stories about some new vehicles having a six month wait for certain parts.  Can you imagine bringing your vehicle in ad being told “sorry that it won’t run, but it’ll be six months before you can have it back?”  No thanks.


The only other “excitement” I can think of this month was my chain link fence.  My back years is surrounded by an old chain link fence, maybe four feet high.  There’s a smaller part of the yard which is enclosed by an additional wooden privacy fence, but the chain link fence goes all the way around the back yard, and between my property and that of my neighbor.  Way in the back, by the alley, is a gate (that looks locked, but isn’t) to let vehicles or riding mowers get back there.  I’m told the previous owners once had a few storage units on the property, but for me the back yard has never been used for anything except space for the dog to run (when I’ve had a dog). 


By the gate there are two posts, one on each side, each holding the hinge side of the two-part gate.  As long ago as six or seven years, someone ran into one of the two posts, putting a nice little dent into it and twisting part of the gate hinge.  I had no idea who did it, and of course nobody ever claimed responsibility.  To keep the gate on, I had to use a wire cable and tie it around the post and part of the gate, and then lock that in place.  But it worked well enough.


Then about two years ago, the same post got hit again, bending it slightly more.  This time it was clear who was responsible, or should I say this time it was clear where the responsible vehicle came from.  Across the alley from me is a house with a seven-foot-high wooden privacy fence, with a gate that manually slides open and closed.  I’d seen large pickup trucks pulling trailers of landscape equipment emerge from that gate now and then when it was opened.  Clearly the owners are running a landscape business and they let the trucks load up back there.  (I think this violates city code, but it isn’t like I bothered reporting it or anything). 


On this occasion, there was a clear trail of tire tracks – in dirt – from under the wooden gate to the alley, into my fence post, and then on up the alley.  As you’d expect, when I politely confronted this neighbor about it – who I’d never spoken to before – they denied any knowledge and refused to do anything about it.  I was going to fix it properly, but something told me not to bother…that inevitable it would be hit again, and again, until it was destroyed.


Many times since then, I’ve noticed deep ruts in the ground going right by my bent fence post, less than an inch from the post itself.  Whoever is driving the truck is unable to turn safely when leaving their driveway, for fear of hitting their fence, and they wind up almost sideswiping mine (or, as before, hitting the post).  I’d hoped that talking to them would have gotten the owners to at last warn the drivers to be careful…but, nope.  They also hit a nearby AT&T pylon, but that once doesn’t service my house so I have no idea when it happened.



A day or two before I had my car serviced, I came home from work to find what you see in the above photo.  The post is now completely destroyed, crunched and pushed, with the nearby gate piece laying on the ground.  A full-on hit and run.  As usual, nobody said anything or admitted anything, and unfortunately this time there was no dirt trail, so even though I suspect it’s the same neighbor, I have zero proof.  It could have been anybody.  At least my thought process was correct: there was no reason to fix the post before, because it was going to be destroyed eventually anyway.


I had to file a police report on the off chance that a) I could make an insurance claim, and b) that whoever hit it was injured, driving a stolen vehicle, or anything else unexpected.  It felt like a complete waste of time, but I made the report and two local officers came out and took the information down.  As you’d expect. My insurance deductible was much too high to cover the damage.  So I had to pay out of pocked to have it fixed.


In the repairs, we moved the post back about two feet inward, which will give the clumsy drivers more room to create big tire ruts in the dirt without damaging the fence.  (Within two days there was a fresh, deep rut right where the pole used to be.  Thanks guys).  I also had the post filled with cement.  If they’re gonna wreck my fence, I’d like to see a huge dent in their vehicle in exchange, or a bumper left behind as evidence.  Only the desire to keep the peace with neighbors has prevented me from adding a HUGE boulder right on the corner of the property line.  I’d get some satisfaction out of it, but really, it’s not worth the hassle.  I just want to live quietly.


In zine news, Conrad von Metzke may still appear here, but I doubt it will be on a monthly basis, as you’ll read in his column.  His health (and dealing with his failing memory) is taking up all his time and energy.  I reminded him that if he wanted to write about that he was more than welcome and he may pop up now and then to check in.  And he is already threatening to do just that, as it appears that once there’s no pressure to write anything, he suddenly might find himself with things to say.  Even if Conrad isn’t here often, we still have Andy York to make this zine readable.


Oh, and if you hadn’t heard, the new issue of Diplomacy World was released on April 2.  Be sure to read it, and consider getting involved by sending in a letter or an article.  You can find that issue (#157), and every issue, at .  The direct link to the new issue is


I guess that’s it from me for now.  See you in May! 

Game Openings

Diplomacy (Black Press): Signed up:  Kevin Wilson, Gavin Begbie, Rick Davis, need four more to start.


By Almost Popular Demand:  Ongoing.  Join in and play NOW!


Where in the World is Kendo Nagasaki?: Ongoing.  Join in and play NOW!


Also in Andy York’s Subzine – You can find his ongoing “Hangman, By Definition” and Facts in Five, plus openings for Breaking Away and Gunboat.


Standby List: HELP!  I need standby players! – Current standby list: Andy York, Andy Lischett, Paul Milewski, Harold Reynolds, Jack McHugh, Brad Wilson, Graham Wilson.


Meet Me in Montauk

The Eternal Sunshine Letter Column


Kevin Wilson: Comments on the Kendo game just ended.  I figured out we were in Belize and had 2 of the 3 most recent closest guesses but used the wrong two to go northwest instead of southeast.  Close though.  Tough to have a shot if you don’t, at least once, get the closest point.  Once we were all in the right region, figuring out where to go got a little confusing at times. It became almost a need for a lucky shot-in-the-dark.


[[I always try to remind all the players to play attention to prior clues given (such as if one clue mentions years of death, the guess she actually be someone DEAD.  And that above all, I suck at the game and NEVER win.  As for the location, I seemed to view the answer as more prominent in the region than most players.]]


Dane Maslen: “Societal mammals seem to have a genetic desire to follow the crowd, as evidenced

by the social pressures inducing laughter when someone tells the “No Soap, Radio” joke.”  This reminds me of an incident at school.  A classmate told me the following 'joke':

A man walks into a chemist's and asks for a tub of Vaseline.  The woman behind the counter replies "I'm sorry, sir, but we only sell Vaseline in jars."


My reaction was one of complete puzzlement.  Then another classmate appeared on the scene and was told the same joke.  He responded with a knowing snigger, only to be told that it wasn't really a joke and there was no sexual innuendo there at all.


[[And as we all know, that boy grew up to be a politician.  Or a clerk at the Department of Motor Vehicles.  Or both.]]


The Dining Dead – Eternal Sunshine Movie Reviews


The Protégé (Amazon Prime) – Searching for something stupid to pull me in when I felt a little off kilter, I found this 2021 action flick which I chose because Michael Keaton was listed as one of the stars.  It’s too long, and the plot twists go from good to goofy in random order.  But for what it was, it was okay.  Maggie Q plays Anna, an assassin who was rescued as a child in Vietnam by Moody (Samuel L. Jackson) another assassin.  While starting work on a new job – this time a task of finding someone but not killing them – Moody is violently murdered, and Anna is almost killed.  She takes it upon herself to avenge Moody’s death, and to piece together who wants her to join him in order to protect her own life in the process.  Some clever hand-to-hand combat stuff with whatever weapons are laying around (knives, trays, tables), a lot of gunfire, and the occasional witty line.  As you’d expect, the film also tries to make broad moral and life-meaning statements in the quitter moments, which fall flat.  I did kind of enjoy seeing Keaton in a physical role, which I don’t think he’s really done since the Batman films.  After I watched the film, I saw a review where the person pointed out how old everyone in this film really is (at 42, Maggie Q is the youngest of the stars).  They called is action heroes in wheelchairs.  I didn’t mind it, to be honest.


Corporate Animals (Shudder) – Another one of those “absolutely not a horror film but on Shudder anyway” choices.  Instead, this is a dark comedy.  Demi Moore (who I didn’t even recognize) plays Lucy, the CEO of a start-up company which is trying to make a name for itself with eatable cutlery (to replace plastic cutlery).  She has her staff on a teambuilding trip, and at her insistence they take the advanced route on a spelunking adventure.  While in the cave, an earthquake blocks the exit and kills their quirky guide (Ed Helms).  Now Lucy and her employees have to find ways to survive, while the struggle and close quarters begin to reveal a number of personal and business secrets.  The ensemble is large and talented enough to keep multiple small storylines going at the same time; some of the faces are familiar to me as actors used in commercials, especially ones seen during NFL games.  There are enough laughs to keep things interesting, even if not everything works.  There are a few slower parts, but overall, it’s not bad for what it is.


The Devils (Shudder) – I noticed that Shudder had this 1971 Kurt Russell “banned” film available in the original uncut state, starring Oliver Reed and Vanessa Redgrave.  I’d heard very little about it until it was released on Blu-Ray a while ago, but I had read about the historical tale of the “possession” of the Nuns of Loudon, so I figured I’d give it a go.  If you hadn’t told me Russell had directed it, I might have guessed, both because of the inclusion of Reed and…well, it has the Russell “look” to it.  Redgrave is given nothing to work with in her part, and while Reed does the best he can, the script is a collection of bad lines and mismatched plot points.  In its time, the film was banned in many places and heavily edited, because of the comingling of religion and sex.  But if you ignore the historical perspective, it is neither shocking nor engaging.  It’s just long and tedious, and what may have worked as “nightmarish” fifty years ago now is simply overdone.  I have a hard time believing I ever would have enjoyed this film if I’d seen it earlier in life, and finally watching it now, I was simply bored.


Older Movies Watched (that I’ve seen many times) – None that I can think of.



By Conrad von Metzke


[[While Conrad is welcome to write about anything he likes in the future here in ES, and I have made him aware of this, I doubt we’ll see his scribblings on a monthly basis any longer, as he announces below]]


Hi there, fellow postal games fanatics.  Many of you may already have figured this out, and others may not care at all, but for anyone still uncertain, this is where I formally leave the games hobby.  As I compute it, after 57 years and two days, no longer shall I darken any of your doors....


The reason is health.  I'm far too busy now, and too distracted, to do much more than take care of the ravages of age and the nearly endless medical visits that come with the march of time.  So I keep missing turns in games and forgetting what I meant to do, and that's no way to function. 


Be assured that I've had a wonderful time over the years, and I shall miss much of it; but to participate properly it does require keeping up with things, and I am no longer doing that.  So with regret, please count me out forthwith.


And very best wishes to all of you.




And now, his final contribution...





     You’ve had this happen; you know you have:  One of your regular Diplomacy buddies ‘phones you and tells you there’s a game forming at his house, please come over.  And many are the times you do exactly that; but this time for whatever reason, you’re not interested. It’s nothing serious:  No death in the family, no evading arrest, no helping the Taliban blow up an embassy; nothing so dire.  No, you just feel like staying home and watching Bugs Bunny cartoons by yourself.  But – you know if you actually say that, you’re in for a five-hour harangue about how ridiculous you are, and what are friends for?, and how they’ve always been there for you, and how if that’s how you really feel you probably ought to go join a men’s nunnery, etc., yadda yadda. 

     So, what you need is a rock-solid excuse that nobody will ever question, and which can’t be readily debunked.  No use offending your Dip buddies, after all, inasmuch as you do somehow manage to win 0.036% of the games you play with them. 

     Now, I want you to believe every word I tell you:  I’ve been there.  I’ve been there for over forty years, and my win percentage is only 0.013.  I’ve always suspected that the other guys choose their countries based on whose turn it is to trample me this time.  I of course always want Austria – my lucky country.

     However.  This particular time I had made rock-solid plans for which I needed the aforementioned rock-solid excuse. I could say that the dog had died, but every damn time I get on the ‘phone, the little twit barks.  I could say that I had a case of bubonic plague, but some smart ass would doubtless note that the plague doesn’t come in cases. I could always not answer the ‘phone, but that wouldn’t work either, I knew; some time back each of us had had spy cameras installed in our houses.  All of us knew about everyone else’s cameras, but were not aware of our own.  Except me.  I knew because my idiot installer knocked on the door and asked if I had a color preference.  

      Of course, there was always the teleportation device; most of us have them, of course.  Mine was rigged to send me to the kitchenware section of the Wal-Mart in Utica, New York.  (I mean, you never know when you may need a replacement lemon squeezer.)  My mistake was to have picked a password that was so obvious that anyone could figure it out.  “Iggle McBaggle DuSquister Fumpblart.”  Why on earth I chose the exit code for the lunatic asylum in our city, I don’t know; but I had no idea at the time that everybody in our group had been there.  More than once.  Each.


     Well.  I think at this point we can skip over some of the other things I did to protect myself – painting our white house orange, changing the corner street names, posting bubonic plague warnings, digging mined trenches in the lawn, and a couple of other top-secret elements that you may read about in the near future, unless the poison gas happens to waft your way….  The point is, I was isolated and insulated quite fully, if belated, so the others were fated to be consternated., ... 


     The downside of all this is that I have now been isolated for nearly seventeen months, and sending the dog to buy the groceries is getting a little old – there are, after all, only so many flavors of Kal-Kan.  There is every good reason to think that the emergency may have abated, and that the other Dip players have long since decided that I was probably eaten by an alligator.  Still and all, knowing those guys as I did, I imagine I have a phenomenally low score by now….


          - Conrad “Crazy Connie’ von Metzke


Out of the WAY #43

by W. Andrew York

(wandrew88 of




On the subzine front, the latest game of Facts in Five ended with Kevin Wilson staying ahead of the other players. The next game is starting - feel free to jump in and join the fun! The Hangman game has the first letter revealed, so it’s early enough to join in there without being “behind.”

I’ve opened a new, Grey-press, Gunboat game. For those who aren’t familiar with this twist, it is similar to Black-press Gunboat; however, certain bylines are reserved for each player. In this case, the name of the Country and the respective Capital City may only be used by the person playing that country (in other words, you know that any press with those bylines are from the actual player). Any press with another byline may be written by any player. I am debating opening it up for spectators to submit press as well as from the players. Any thoughts?

On the other side, if I don’t get any positive movement on the Choice or Breaking Away openings I might just close those for now. However, I’m open to any persuasive arguments to keep them. And, as always, I’m willing to consider suggestions for other games folks would like me to host.

Unfortunately, again, not much else this time in the subzine, beyond the game reports. I didn’t even finish a book (first time that I can remember that happening in I don’t know how many decades). On the positive side, I added a few more potential ticklers for Texas-themed columns, found another great resource to use in my research and have made some small progress on a couple of topics I’m hoping to present.

                Baseball season has started. Tuesday was the first home game for the local Round Rock Express (Rangers) in a series against El Paso (Padres). But, they’ve dropped the first three games - might be a long season. On the other hand, folks are still settling between the Rangers and the minors so there will be some additional folks added that may improve things. And, in a nonsensical result, going to games will provide more reading time. Yes, I take a book to games and read during the pre-game period, between innings, changes in pitchers, game delays, etc. So, expect more in the way of books reviews this summer.

                I was able to see a couple of movies in the past month:


                Apollo 10 ½ - Richard Linklater (local film director) based this one his life growing up near Houston/NASA in the late

                                ‘60s. Set in the summer of 1969, the atmosphere of first lunar landing bookends the film, with the middle

                                delving into being a kid that summer, in general and with a Houston tilt. There are many nods and winks to the

                                way things were back then (arcades, pull-tabs on soda/beer cans, etc.). Linklater talked about the extensive

research into AstroWorld (getting ride locations right, sourcing home movies from Houstonians to recreate

the atmosphere, etc.), determining correct commercials for period TV shows and mining his past (memories of

his sister working at an ice cream parlor) shows that this was a labor of love for him. And, it certainly

shows as it brought memories from my growing up to mind, sort of a nostalgic link to my past. Recommended,

especially for those who were kids during that time.


                Hit the Road – This is a 2021 Iranian release, in Farsi with subtitles, about a family road trip. Laced with humor and

                                outstanding performances, it is mostly lighthearted. But, there’s a more serious undertone that slowly is

                                brought to the forefront and presents a commentary on life in Iran today. The coda is a bittersweet mix of the

                                zany on top of the somber realization of the reason behind the trip. Recommended, but only if the topic is of



One more comment on Apollo 10 ½ that came up in the post-screening discussion. It had its World Premiere at this year’s SXSW Conference the week before I saw it. Interestingly, though, it wasn’t the first screening of the finished movie for an audience. The SXSW screening was, truly, the World Premier; however, the Solar System (Galactic?) Premiere happened the week before when it was shown on the International Space Station.

Going to be heading to the Dell Diamond shortly, hopefully for the first Express win of the season. Hope you’re all well and enjoying the Spring. See ‘ya next month!





Letter Column

(always welcome, send them in!)

(if something shouldn’t be included here, clearly mark it as a personal comment)


[Mark Firth] - I shall return to my Covid-induced rest.

I have been on one of the scientific studies here in the UK for most of the pandemic. The government pulled funding on

this at the end of March. The study is continuing but they offered a final PCR test which I duly did. As it turned out, this

coincided with my second journey in two years – a trip to London for a music concert on my birthday. Lo and behold,

as this was drawing to its end, a text and email came through to flag a positive result. Great birthday present! At that

point I wouldn’t have even tested if not offered but it has laid me up in the days since. Fortunately I’d just finished the

busy work period leading to 31 March, so I’m not stressing about deadlines. [WAY] – sounds like, if you had to get

infected with Covid, this was a pretty darn opportune time for you! Hope you’re over things soon.

[MF] – Amusing sidenote: the UK announced an extra group of symptoms this week. These aligned strongly with the

ones I’ve registered long-term for the last 18 months!





Babylon 5 Quote


In “The Very Long Night of Londo Mollari” – Sheridan: “We’re all dying Londo, twenty years, fifty years, a hundred

                                years…doesn’t matter. What matters is what we do while we’re waiting around, how we live out the seconds



Source: But In Purple...I’m Stunning! by J. Michael Straczynski, edited by Sara “Samm” Barnes, copyright 2008.





Game Section


Everyone Plays Games: Hangman, By Definition; Facts in Five


Game Openings: Breaking Away (Kent, Burgess, Smith; Firth, minimum 6 players needed)

Standard Choice (Smith, minimum 4 players needed)

 *NEW* Grey-Press Gunboat – countries, and their capital cities, restricted to each player (no preference lists)


Possible Game Openings: Breaking Away Variants; Suggestions accepted for other games to offer.


Standbys: Breaking Away (x1); Gunboat Diplomacy (x1)


Rules for Breaking Away. Breaking Away Variants and Choice available on the Variable Pig website (





“Round Rock Express”

(No-Press Gunboat, Game #1)

MN: 2021Crb32


Summer 1903


England retreats F gas-MAO

Russia retreats F bal-BOT


Fall 1903


Austria: F GRE s a bul, A BUL s a bud-rum, A TRI s a vie, A BUD-rum, A rum-SEV, A VIE s ger a mun-boh (nso)

England:  F NWY s ger f den-swe, F mao-SPA(NC), a bre-gas (ann), F POR s f mao-spa(nc), A yor-EDI

France: F nwg-NTH, A spa s a gas (r-mar/otb), A pic-BRE, A PAR s a pic-bre, A GAS s a spa

Germany: F BAL s f den-swe, A BEL s eng a bur-pic (nso), A MUN s rus a boh-tyl (nso), A MOS s rus a ukr-sev (nso), F den-SWE, A sil-WAR, A KIE s a mun

Italy: F EME s tur a smy-syr (nso), A TUN hold, A tyl-VEN, F ION s aus f gre-aeg (nso)

Russia: F BOT-swe, F BLA s a ukr-rum, A UKR-rum, A BOH-vie

Turkey: A SMY hold, F CON s f aeg, F AEG hold


Supply Center Count


Austria: Bud, Tri, Vie, Ser, Gre, Bul, SEV                                                     = 7                          Builds 1 (nowhere to build)

England: Edi, Lpl, Lon, Nwy, POR, SPA, bre                                               = 6                          Builds 2

France: Mar, Par, BRE, por, spa, bel                                                               = 3                          Removes 1 or 2, depending on retreat

Germany: Ber, Kie, Mun, Den, Hol, Swe, War, BEL, MOS                       = 9                          Builds 2 (only room for 1 build)

Italy: Nap, Rom, Ven, Tun                                                                                = 4                          Even

Russia: StP, Rum, sev, mos                                                                               = 2                          Removes 2

Turkey: Ank, Con, Smy                                                                                     = 3                          Even

Neutral: none


Next Due Autumn/Winter 1903 and Spring 1904


Note – Split seasons are granted when 2 or more requests are received if 4+ players; 3 or less requires only 1.


Note – A question was asked about submitting provisional orders. They are always allowed based on potential retreats and

builds/removals in a preceding season. Also, based on whether a called substitute takes over or the original player remains. Provisional orders are not allowed for orders/actions within the current, or future, seasons.





Hangman, By Definition


This is a five round game, with each round consisting of a variable number of turns. The winner will be the person who wins the most rounds, with a tie breaker being fewest total number of turns in those winning rounds. Second tie breaker will be the most number of letters guessed (by total count revealed, not by individual letter).


Each round will consist of identifying a word of at least six letters. Along with each word will be the first definition given. All words and definitions will be identified by blank spaces. Words and definitions are verified in a dictionary that was my high school graduation gift (slight hint to those who might want to find the edition).


The goal is to guess the word in as few turns as possible. Each turn, all players will submit one letter to be revealed. The letter submitted by the most players will be the letter revealed in the next turn. Ties will be broken by a randomized method. Additionally, each player should submit a guess for the word. Once the word is correctly identified (spelling is important), that round will end and a new round will begin. All players who guess the word in the same turn will share in the win for the round. If the word is not guessed by the end of six turns with no letter being revealed, no one will win the round.


Along with revealing letters in the word, letters will be revealed in the definition. There are no bonus points for guessing any part of the definition, it is only there to help players figure out the word. No guesses about parts of the definition will be confirmed or displayed except by the letter revealed in that round. The letters “E” and “S” can never be chosen as the letter to be revealed.


Game 1, Round Five, Turn 2:


                Letter Votes:  A – 2; M – 1; N – 2; O – 1; T – 1                           Revealed: A (dice roll decision with d6)


                Words Guessed:   (Firth) Mirror; (Kent) Dragon; (Lischett) Magnet; (Maslen) Veneer; (O’Hara) <>;

(Smith) Banger; (Wilson) Theory




                Word:                     __ A __ __ __ __ (6)


Definition:             __ __ (2)  __ __ A __ __ (5)  __ __ __ __ __ (5)  __ __ (2)  __ __ __ __ __ __  __ __ (8)

                                                __ __ __ __ __  __ __ (7)  __  __ __ (3)  __ __ __ __ A __  __ __ (8)  __ __ (2)

                                                __ __ __ __ __ (5)


                Never Revealed:  E, S                         Already Revealed: A, L


Words Previously Guess in this Game: Banner, Letter, Pencil, Sketch, Winter, Wordle


    Game Words Correctly Guessed: Infinitesimal (David-Gardner, Firth, Kent, Smith, Wilson);

Triclinium (Firth, Maslen, Smith, Wilson)

Chummy (Wilson)

Region (Firth, Kent, Lischett, Maslen, Smith)


Player Comments:                


 [Kevin Wilson] – Well, not much help that round. Not a single “L” in the definition, I don’t know if that helps or not.


[Richard Smith] – Thinking of a random 6-letter word without an L, I’ll try BANGER…

                Banger has several meanings in UK English (small firework, old car, pork sausage or lively pop song) but maybe none

in the US English. [WAY] – I’ve seen the term used over hear for a sausage, not sure if it is just for one made from

pork. I vaguely recall it being used for a type of fireworks as a kid, but I could easily be mistaken.


[Mark Firth] – Definition: An image which is backward painted and retained in China.





                                                                        FACTS IN FIVE


Rules:     There will be five rounds, the cumulative high score at the end of the fifth round will be the winner. Anyone may join anytime with a starting score matching the lowest total from the previous round. Anyone missing a round will add the lowest score of that round.

                Each round will consist of five categories and five letters.  Each player submit may an entry for each category which has a key word that starts with each of the letters (twenty-five total entries). Key words are generally the first word; however articles (the, a, etc.) and modifiers (“red” in red bicycle for “R” in “mode of transportation” or “general” in General Lee for “G” in “Military Leaders”) are not key words. A word in the category may not be the key word (“bank” in “Bank of America” for “B” in the category “Banks”). For given names, the last name is the key word, if married it will be their post-marriage last name. However, in the case of commonly used stage names, that name should be used (in a category of female singers, ”Q” could be “Queen Latifa” and “Cher” for “C”). An entry may only be used once per round. Please clearly identify which individual you are using as your answer if there are multiple potential people with a given name. For instance, if the category is American Presidents, answering Washington is fine as there is only one; however, if you decided to use Bush you need to indicate whether you are submitting the father or the son. Unclear answers will be matched to score the least points. Using the Bush example, if one person submitted “Bush” and three people submit “George W. Bush” the latter would score 2 points and the former 1.

                One point will be scored for each entry that unarguably meets the letter and category. An additional point will be added if anyone else also uses the same valid entry for the same category. Maximum possible score in a round is 50 with a lowest possible score of 25, presuming an individual submits a valid entry for each category and letter in that round.

                Research is allowed, collaboration between players is not.


Game Four, Round Four


Bolded - Scores 2 points for matching another entry; Crossed Out - scores 0 points; otherwise scores 1 point.


REMINDER - Last names are generally the key word, not first names.


   Players                               D                             G                             J                              N                             *             


Multi-Player Board Game

    Mark Firth                        Diplomacy           Gloomhaven        Junta                     Nemesis                 Clue/Cluedo

    Doug Kent                        Diplomacy           The Game of Life  Junta                   Niagara                  Risk

    Andy Lischett                  Diplomacy           Go                           Jumanji                 Nemesis                 Chess

    Walt O’Hara                    Diplomacy           Gladiator               Jutland                   Nine Navies War Cosmic Encounter

    Kevin Wilson                   Diplomacy           Gloomhaven        Jamaica                 Nemesis                 Terraforming Mars


Statesman/Politician during WWII

    Mark Firth                        E. Daladier            J Goebbels            Jesse H Jones       J Nygassrdsvold    W Churchill

    Doug Kent                        DeGaulle               Gorse                      Jankowski            Nygassrdsvold    Roosevelt

    Andy Lischett                  De Gaulle              George VI             S Jovanovic         Nehru                     Churchill

    Walt O’Hara                    Karl Donitz           C de Gaulle         S Jovanovic         AP Nogues            J Ribbentrop

    Kevin Wilson                   Andre Diethelm   C de Gaulle         JS Jankowski      Milan Nedic          Winston Churchill


Non-US Capitol City

    Mark Firth                        Dodoma                Gitega                    Jakarta                 New Delhi             Cape Town

    Doug Kent                        Dhaka                    Guatemala City  Jakarta                 Nairobi                 Riyadh

    Andy Lischett                  Dublin                   Georgetown         Jakarta                 Nassau                   London

    Walt O’Hara                    Dhaka                    Georgetown         Jakarta                 Nairobi, Kenya   Santiago Chile

    Kevin Wilson                   Dublin, Ireland   Guatemala City  Jakarta                 Nairobi, Kenya   London, UK


Food Seasoning

    Mark Firth                        Dill                         Garlic                    Jasmine                 Nutmeg                 Chili

    Doug Kent                        Dill                         Garlic                    Juniper                 Nutmeg                 Rosemary

    Andy Lischett                  Dill Seed               Ginger                   Juniper berries   Nutmeg                 Salt

    Walt O’Hara                    Dill                         Ginger                   Jalapeno                Nutmeg                 Paprika

    Kevin Wilson                   Dill                         Garlic                    Jerk (Jamaican)   Nutmeg                 Salt



    Mark Firth                        Dunnock               G-B Grosbeak     Junco                     N Mockingbird   Chiffchaff

    Doug Kent                        Dark-Eyed Junco Gray Jay                Juniper Titmouse N Mockingbird   Rock Wren

    Andy Lischett                  Dove                      Grosbeak              Jay                         Nightingale            Robin

    Walt O’Hara                    Dickcissel              Goldfinch             Jay, Blue              Nuthatch               Pewee

    Kevin Wilson                   Dove                      Goldfinch             Jay                         Noisy Scrub-bird  Robin


*This category’s scoring may be difficult to follow. In general, how an answer is submitted can make a difference as well as

                potential modifiers. For instance, from above, Dark-Eyed Junco is a distinct type of songbird and was in the “D”

                category while Junco is a more general type of songbird and entered in the “J” category. However, they don’t match as

                they are answers to different letters (if they’d been under the same letter, such as the two Grosbeaks for “G”, they would

                have, though see the scoring note on the Grosbeaks for another twist).

In several of Walt’s answers he noted the key word that matched the letter first, with additional information after a

comma. Therefore, the information after the comma was disregarded as it wasn’t relevant to the letter/category match.

So, back to the Junco discussion. If Doug had entered under “J” – Junco, Dark-eyed and had a different entry for “D”, I

would have disregarded the information after the comma and it would have matched Mark’s Junco.


Note – for allowed and disallowed answers, please feel free to correct me!


Notes on Mark’s Answers: G-B Grosbeak is Glaucous-blue Grosbeak and, in this case, it does match Grosbeak, however, if a

                third answer was Golden-winged Grosbeak none would have matched as the Glaucous-blue Grosbeak is distinctly

                different from a Golden-winged Grosbeak with Grosbeak potentially matching either; N Mockingbird is Northern


Notes on Doug’s Answers: DeGaulle is disallowed as his last name properly begins with “G”; N Mockingbird is Northern


Notes on Andy’s Answers: DeGaulle is disallowed as his last name properly begins with “G”; S Jovanovic is Slobodan

                Jovanovic; Georgetown is Georgetown, Guyana; in this case Grosbeak does match Glaucous-blue Grosbeak, however,

                if a third answer was Golden-winged Grosbeak none would have matched as the Glaucous-blue Grosbeak is distinctly

                different from a Golden-winged Grosbeak with Grosbeak potentially matching either

Notes on Walt’s Answers: Diplomacy (multiple publishers); Gladiator (Battleline/Avalon Hill); Jutland (Avalon Hill); Nine

                Navies War (Decision Games); Karl Donitz (briefly leader of Nazi Germany); C de Gaulle is Charles De Gaulle (French

                general and statesman); S Jovanovic is Slobodan Jovanovic (prime minister of Yugoslav govt in exile); AP Nogues is

                Auguste Paul Nogues (French leader and diplomat); J Ribbentrop is Joachim von Ribbontrop (German ambassador);

                Dhaka (Bangladesh); Georgetown is Georgetown (Guyana); Jakarta is Jakarta (Indonesia); Nuthatch is Nuthatch, Red-

                Breasted; Pewee is Pewee, Eastern Wood

       Note – for each of the songbirds, Walt gave a URL to an .mp3 of the “song” from the bird for reference. I didn’t include

                those in this, but if anyone’s interested let me know and I’ll send you the links.

Notes on Kevin’s Answers: C de Gaulle is Charles de Gaulle; JS Jankowski is Jan Stanislaw Jankowski; Jakarta was submitted

                as Jakarta, Indonesia


General Player Comments:


Note – a couple folks commented that I’d used the spelling of capitol instead of capital (the former being the building, the latter

                being the city/town). Fortunately, no one appeared to have been misled by the typo.


[Kevin Wilson] – If Diplomacy doesn’t get the “D” then I’m not sure who is playing this games.

                Dublin is my favorite city in Europe. I’ve never been there and not had a great time.

                What would life be without salt and garlic?


Game Five, Round One


Letters:                  A             B             H             N             O

Categories:            Name of a Print Sports Magazine; Royal Title; Grammy Winning Song in the 1990s;

Celebrated Living Religious Leader; Recognized National or State Holiday in the US



Current Standings


Scores by Category             1st           2nd         3rd          4th          5th          Now                        Previous                 Total     

   Kevin Wilson                      8             8            10             9            9             44         +                 159      =                203

   Doug Kent                           7             6              9             9            6             37         +                 154      =                191

   Andy Lischett                     7             6              9          10            9             41         +                 136      =                177

   Mark Firth                            9             7              6             8            7             37         +                 139      =                176

   Walt O’Hara                       6             7              9             8            7             37         +                136      =                173





Deadline for the Next Issue of Out of the WAY:


May 11, 2022 at noon Central US Time Zone

See You Then!


Game entries, letters of comment and other material can be sent to:


                wandrew88 at; or by post to: W. Andrew York; POB 201117; Austin TX 78720-1117



Eternal Sunshine Game Section


Diplomacy, “More Than Ever”, 2021A, F 02

Austria: Andy Lischett – andy@lischett.comF Adriatic Sea Supports A Trieste – Venice,

 F Greece Supports A Serbia – Bulgaria, A Serbia – Bulgaria, A Trieste – Venice, A Vienna - Tyrolia.

England: Paul Milewski – F English Channel - Picardy (*Fails*),

 F Irish Sea – Wales, A Yorkshire - Edinburgh.

France: Brad Wilson - fullfathomfive675@gmail.comA Belgium Supports A Picardy - Burgundy (*Disbanded*),

 F Brest Supports F Spain(sc) - Mid-Atlantic Ocean, F Marseilles - Gulf of Lyon, A Picardy - Burgundy (*Bounce*),

 A Portugal – Spain, F Spain(sc) - Mid-Atlantic Ocean.

Germany: Heath Davis-Gardner – heathdavisgardner@gmail.comF Denmark Supports

 F Helgoland Bight - North Sea, F Helgoland Bight - North Sea, A Holland – Belgium,

 A Munich - Burgundy (*Bounce*), A Ruhr Supports A Holland - Belgium.

Italy: John David Galt - F Ionian Sea - Eastern Mediterranean, F Naples - Ionian Sea,

 A Tunis Hold, A Venice Hold (*Dislodged*, retreat to Apulia or Piedmont or Rome or Tuscany or OTB).

Russia: Simon Langley-Evans - - F Black Sea Supports A Sevastopol – Armenia,

 F Norway - Norwegian Sea, F Rumania Supports A Serbia – Bulgaria, A Sevastopol – Armenia,

 F Skagerrak Unordered, F Helgoland Bight Hold (No Such Unit), A Sweden – Norway, A Ukraine - Sevastopol.

Turkey: Jack McHugh - jwmchughjr@gmail.comF Ankara Supports A Constantinople,

 A Bulgaria Supports A Constantinople (*Disbanded*), A Constantinople Supports A Bulgaria, F Smyrna Unordered,

 F Aegean Sea Hold (No Such Unit).


Supply Center Chart


Austria:          Budapest, Bulgaria, Greece, Serbia, Trieste, Venice, Vienna=7                         Build 2

England:         Edinburgh, Liverpool, London=3                                                                       Even

France:           Brest, Marseilles, Paris, Portugal, Spain=5                                                        Even

Germany:       Belgium, Berlin, Denmark, Holland, Kiel, Munich=6                                           Build 1

Italy:               Naples, Rome, Tunis=3                                                                                    Remove 1 or Even

Russia:           Moscow, Norway, Rumania, Sevastopol, St Petersburg, Sweden, Warsaw=7     Even

Turkey:           Ankara, Constantinople, Smyrna=3                                                                  Even




PARIS: What a mess. Worse than eating coq au vin with your fingers.


Deadline for W 02/S 03 is May 14th at 7am My Time

Where in the World is Kendo Nagasaki?


The Rules were in Eternal Sunshine #131, read them if you want a detailed explanation and examples.  Basically, this is a guessing game, trying to guess the mystery person and their location (both chosen by me before the game started).  Closest guess gets a public clue and notification they were the closest.  Everyone else sees the clue but has to figure out on their own who was the closest that turn.


Turn 1


Kevin Wilson:

Ralph Waldo Emerson in Stony Rapids, Saskatchewan, Canada


Simon Langley-Evans:

Theodore Roosevelt in Cork, Ireland


Richard Smith:

Alice Cooper in Alice Springs, Australia


David Burgess:

Vladimir Putin in Hell, Michigan


John David Galt:

Elon Musk in Kourou, French Guiana


Andy Lischett:

Lee Van Cleef in Fairbanks, Alaska


Tom Howell:

Nathaniel Parker in New Scotland Yard, London


Brad Wilson:

Josh Hawley in Antwerp, Belgium


Dane Maslen:

Volodymyr Zelensky in Kyiv, Ukraine


Jack McHugh:

David Koresh in Wako, Texas


Mark Firth:

Mortimer Mouse, in Hoboken. New Jersey


Hint to Person Placed Closest to Me:

I’m dead, you’re not.  Right chromosome.


Deadline for Turn 2 is May 14th at 7am My Time


By Almost Popular Demand


I’ve run this game (or By Popular Demand, of which this is a variant) a number of times in Eternal Sunshine.  The rules are simple: I supply you with five categories.  You send in an answer, trying to choose the answer which will match with other people’s but NOT be the most popular.  Research IS permitted.  You get one point for each person who submitted the answer you gave, including yourself.  However, the most popular answer in every category scores ZERO.    So, if you and two other people send in the same answer that’s three points.  You also get to choose a Joker category, where the points are doubled.  If you don’t specify a Joker, it gets applied to the first category listed (so you don’t “lose” the Joker).  Always answer for every category: any answer is legal, and will earn a point even if you’re the only person to give it.  High score after ten categories wins.  Any player who joins after the first round starts with the lowest score so far; if you join starting in Turn 3 and the person doing the worst has 27 points so far, that’s what you start with.  Also if you miss a turn, you get the lowest score that round rather than zero.  This makes the game more competitive and keeps you playing even if you arrive late or forget to play one turn.  Turn 10 is worth double points.


Turn 6 Categories:


1. Something dogs should not eat.

2. A dried fruit.

3. A U.S. university or college with a reputation for good sports teams.

4. A pretzel variety.

5. A Michael Caine film.


Joker category shown in BOLD.  Most popular answer shown in strikethrough.

Jack McHugh gets the high score of 7 this round (out of a possible 8).  Richard Smith gets stuck with a single point. 


Comments by Category:


Something dogs should not eat: Kevin Wilson – “Chocolate is always the first thing that pops to mind the dogs apparently are supposed to eat but our dog seemed to at times want to nibble on grass and then throw up.”  [[I think the general accepted theory is that most digs instinctively know that’s going to happen, and therefore they eat grass when the feel like they need or want to throw up in order to induce it.]]  Richard Smith – “See .”  Brad Wilson – “Any dog I ever knew ate everything in sight and seemed fine.”  Mark Firth – “Might have said “that thing hidden in the undergrowth!”


A dried fruit: Kevin Wilson – “Lots of dried fruits but mango, in my opinion, is the only one better dried than not.”  Andy Lischett – “Carol is apparently hoping that everyone will avoid the obvious Apricot. Possibly not a good strategy.”  [[When I listed the category, my assumption was raisins and prunes were the obvious answers.  I’m often surprised by how wrong I am.]]  Mark Firth – “Started with sultana but think this might do better.”


A U.S. university or college with a reputation for good sports teams: Kevin Wilson – “I suspect Notre Dame or Michigan or Texas or LSU will be p  pular but Alabama isn’t just a football school. They’re pretty good at other stuff too.”  Mark Firth – “Be interested in the top answers here.”


A pretzel variety: Kevin Wilson – “My favorite unless with peanut butter then just give me a simple little standard twist.”  Mark Firth – “Not knowing anything about pretzels, my research suggested this might mean type (e.g., basic twist) or brand: I went latter.”  [[My intention was the former, but all answers are valid.]] 


A Michael Caine film: Kevin Wilson – “I stumbled across Now You See Me on a lazy Sunday afternoon a couple of years ago and was thoroughly entertained.  Likely not that popular of his films but one I really enjoyed.  Even the sequel was good.” [[Perhaps not popular in this category, because he was not a main character, but as a film it did very well when released.  I never cared for the sequel; like most sequels it was unnecessary and not as good as the original.]]  Richard Smith – “There's a new TV adaptation of this currently showing in the UK.”  Andy Lischett – “Simon Langley-Evans in By Popular Demand in Last Orders! also asked for a Michael Caine movie, and he got Alfie.”  [[I wonder if he saw my category before he published, or if this was a crazy coincidence?]]  Brad Wilson – “Lordy, there are enough to choose from. Jaws 4 maybe? Well, maybe not. The Eagle Has Landed, which I always liked.” Mark Firth – “5.         One of my favourites. A 6-part tv series is just drawing to its close in the UK. It has been different enough not to pale in comparison.”


General Comments: None.


Turn 7 Categories – Remember to Specify a Joker Category


1. A medical specialty.

2. A sports magazine (printed).

3. Something you do in a waiting room.

4. A suit in a deck of cards.

5. A cereal that kids like to eat.


Deadline for Turn 7 is May 14th at 7am My Time

Deadline for the next issue of Eternal Sunshine is: Saturday May 14, 2022 at 7am My Time (U.S. central time) – some games and subzines earlier