Eternal Sunshine #48

January 2011

By Douglas Kent 911 Irene Drive, Mesquite, TX  75149

Email: doug of or diplomacyworld of

On the web at – or go directly to the Diplomacy section at  Also be sure to visit the official Diplomacy World website which can be found at  Also remember to check out for official Toby the Helpful Kitty news, advice column, blog, and links to all his available merchandise!  Links to many of the books and DVDs reviewed can be found by clicking on the Amazon Store button in the main menu of the Whining Kent Pigs website.  Or go to where women can learn all the secrets of how a man’s mind works, and why they act the way they do.

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Quote Of The Month“I ran back to the bonfire trying to outrun my humiliation, I think.” (Joel in “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind”)


Welcome to Eternal Sunshine, the only Diplomacy zine which can get chest pains because someone else is having chest pains.  Well, not exactly.  Heather went to the Doctor today because she has been feeling an occasional rapid heartbeat for the past few weeks.  It hasn’t gone away, and in fact is a bit more frequent.  The office gave her an EKG which seemed normal, and now they have her wearing one of the small 24-hour EKG recording devices.  Of course, while she’s feeling a bit nervous and uncomfortable, I have “chosen” to begin one of my full-blown anxiety attacks, complete with tingling arm, chest pain, and dizziness.  This could be something as simple as an iron deficiency, but try telling that to my brain.  I’m already on anti-anxiety medication, but at this point I may need to take my optional extra dose just to calm down.


I hate having such little control over my body and my mind…especially my mind.  I don’t think it was always this bad, but considering the massive levels of self-medicating I did beginning in my early teens I suppose I have very little in terms of a baseline for comparison.  I just know that I am always trying to peek around the corner to see what the next disaster is going to be; waiting for the next shoe to drop.  The happier I should be, the better things are going, the more I feel the ominous cloud waiting for me.  The sad (or positive, depending on how you look at it) thing is I am in better mental shape now than I was during the past 10 years or so.  So this is the healthier me dealing with the issues of life.  Can you imagine the unhealthy, less stable me?


With that in mind, I’ll try to wrap this up.  The “Everybody Plays” Diplomacy variant is up and running; you can join in at any time, and if you miss a season it doesn’t matter.  The more people that play, the more fun it becomes.  We’ve also got three people signed up for Cline 9-Man so far, which is a very positive reaction after just one issue.  I hope to get a few more of you to join in the fun.  As a matter of fact, I was happily surprised with how many people responded to the Hypotheticals this month.  Be sure to check out the Movie Quote contest too; I think this turn is one of the easier ones. 


Finally, I could really use some suggestions for future “victims” in the You Don’t Know Me interview section.  Anyone?  Anyone?


Happy New Year, and I’ll see you all in 2011! 


The Month’s Playlist: Greatest Hits – Supertramp; The Isle of Dreaming – Kate Price; End of Endless False Starts – Raina Rose; To Drive the Cold Winter Away – Loreena McKennitt; Chelsea Williams – Chelsea Williams.



A Whining Kent Pig Christmas


Christmas in my household growing up was a very odd experience.  It’s a sequence of happy memories mixed with confusion and sadness.  As a family we never seemed to have any money, but we lived in wealthy towns because my parents wanted us to attend quality public schools.  Likewise, we always had a Christmas tree – a real one, not one of these plastic knock-offs.   It would be decorated with the old bulb lights, tinsel (on a string, not the throw kind) and various breakable ornaments.  There were no family heirlooms or anything like that, but the tree was always something I loved to stare at. 


My parents never loved each other as long as I can remember, so tension was everywhere.  They tried to play nice and be a happy family, but you never knew when the next explosion would erupt from.  Adding fuel to the fire was the fact that a lot of the presents we received were actually paid for by my paternal Grandmother Isabelle.  This was a major source of angst for my mother; Isabelle was one of her least favorite people on the planet, mainly because my Dad had been disowned by his own father when he chose to marry my mother.  During her various rants (or episodes of singing rude songs while banging pots and pans at the sink) Isabelle was the most frequent target of her venom.  The fact was, when her husband died the money was divided between her other two sons and a trust set up for her, which had been designed to greatly limit available funds to send our way.  So even though my Dad wanted us to have plenty of presents so we would enjoy Christmas, every gift that was opened stuck a needle in my mother’s stomach.  Of course, as a young child I didn’t understand any of these dynamics.  All I knew was my parents fought all the time; I didn’t even know my mother acted differently than anybody else’s.  I also had no idea my father was Jewish; I didn’t even know what that meant…or that in life he had proclaimed himself an atheist.  The religious aspect of the holiday was never mentioned.


The one thing which kept her anger at bay would be the arrival of HER father, Dwight.  He was the only grandparent I ever knew.  My father’s side was a mystery, and Dwight’s wife (my mother’s mother) died when I was only a baby.  Dwight was the smiling, cheerful grandparent who came for Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Later he would remarry to a German woman who we called Ann (her true German name escapes me at the moment).  Ann was sweet and while she didn’t tolerate the same level of crap that Dwight would, I have nothing but fond memories of her as well.  Dwight (or the two of them) would arrive the day before Christmas, driving down from Hartford, and then my mother would be in a much better mood.  They’d talk and laugh (and drink) into the night.  As a matter of fact, as a child lying in bed on Christmas Eve, trying to fall asleep so it would be Christmas morning already, I would hear them all downstairs.  It always sounded happy…that’s one of the few memories I have of real happiness in my household.

Those of my generation will remember that this was still the age of the Sears Wish Book, the annual Peanuts and Rudolph viewings (with one or two new shows appearing every year), and the list of toys we all wanted from watching commercials during Saturday morning cartoons.  We were always encouraged to make lists for “Santa” which we’d turn over to our parents.  But we all knew that “Santa” didn’t exist.  Proof positive was the unmistakable fact that EVERY year, my parents would get the lists confused.  One of the major gifts, or THE major gift, on one list was bound to be given to the wrong child, and vice versa.  Of course, we could have simply agreed to swap them ourselves, but we all seemed to enjoy it more to keep the gift the other child wanted…just a form of sibling torture, I suppose.  If Antonia got the small record player I asked for, or I got the “U-Drive It” toy instead of her, that was just too damn bad for the other one!


The most memorable of these was the year by bother Andrew had asked for a new bicycle.  That was the ONLY gift on his list…the only thing he wanted.  I’m not even sure if any of us had ever gotten a new bike in our lives; we were happy enough with the common yard-sale used variety.  But Andrew’s was falling apart (after being used by our oldest brother Paul before him).  We all rode our bikes everywhere; that was the real method of transportation for us, with my Mom usually busy or too inebriated to drive.  Paul had even begun the practice (which I followed) or taking a street map of our town and marking off streets he’d visited, trying to work his way outward on bike trips until he’d covered the entire map.


Unfortunately, “Santa” had screwed up.  There was no new bike for Andrew.  Instead, among his other presents, was a new bike for my youngest brother Jon; a dirt-bike style instead of the 10-speed Andrew wanted.  It was too small for him too, so there was simply no way to rectify the error.  I have no idea when Dad realized his mistake; it was probably Christmas Eve.  But he knew Andrew would be very hurt by this turn of events. 


The custom in our household seemed to be that the younger kids always woke up first, and the older ones last.  That’s sort of when I knew I had grown up: the first year that I realized it was more fun to stay in bed and make everyone wait for me instead of going downstairs to open presents (nobody could open presents until everybody was awake; they were restricted to their Christmas stockings).  Anyway, this year everybody was downstairs except for Andrew; he was the last to rise.  My Dad pulled Jon aside (but within hearing distance of where I was sitting) and explained the situation to him. 


“Look Jon, Andrew really wanted a new bike this year.  That’s all he wanted.  It’s complicated, but he isn’t getting one.  But we did get you a bike, a smaller one for somebody your size.  So I need you to be mature about this.  We’re going to let you keep the bicycle of course, but don’t mention it to Andrew.  Don’t rub his nose in it, okay son?  He’s going to be upset enough as it is.  Just don’t make a big deal about it.  Okay?”


“Okay Dad,” Jon said with a solemn look on his face.  “I understand.”


It was maybe two minutes later that Andrew walked down the stairs towards the activity around the tree in the living room.  He was still four or five steps from the bottom when Jon saw him, jumped up as quickly as he could, and raced over to stop him, a huge grin on his face.


“Guess what Andy?  I got a new bike for Christmas…and YOU DIDN’T!”


…we don’t spend holidays together as a family very much these days.


There are plenty of other Christmas stories I could share with you, but those will have to wait for future years and future issues.  Whatever holidays you celebrate, I hope you enjoy them, and that you have the opportunity to spend them with whoever you love most…be they human or canine or feline…or indeterminate!



Hypothetical of the Month

Last month, we gave you these two hypotheticals: #1 – Your child support payments will be cut in half if you tell your “ex” about the big raise you got.  Do you tell?  #2 – You are a doctor.  A baby is born with incurable disorders and is in extreme pain.  Do you prescribe an overdose?


Melinda Holley - #1You are responsible for your child no matter if you are divorced, separated, or whatever.  Almost all child support payments are part of divorce proceedings/court proceedings.  You are required to disclose all changes in your income (either up or down).  The "ex" is not a factor in this equation.  Your child is.  Yes, you reveal the big raise.  (This is kind of a sort spot with me since I've seen 2 sisters struggle...mostly in trying to get child support payments from ex-husbands who were very good about hiding income.)


#2 - Personally, no.  But I wouldn't discourage the parents from transferring to another doctor who might feel differently though. 


Jeremie LeFrancois - #1 Yes. Paying taxes is a chance!

#2 - Depends on what is the practice amongst doctors in my environment - I would follow the "general practice" (or "non written law").


Kevin Tighe - #1 - Child support payments are a legally binding agreement.  Yes, you tell about a big raise.  It is about the children not about the ex.  (I am so glad my ex and I decided to bypass the courts and make our own  payment plans.)


#2 - As a doctor I consult with the parents and offer all the options.  It is their choice.  Before our first was born we decided that in a worse case scenario, we would forego needless operations and hold the baby close to us until it passed on.  Luckily we didn't face such a situation.


David McCrumb - #1 - I really can't comprehend the question. I pass.


#2 - No. If you prescribe an overdose there is a paper trail.


Jack McHugh - #1 - It happen to me although i was the one paying....I usually just offered my daughters mother more money and she would tell me what she was entitled to based on the guidelines. Most of the time we worked it out, once or twice we went to court and had a judge do it. The biggest issue I had wasn't making more money but when making less money. It’s easy to give out more money but no one wants to take less so then I almost always had to go to court. I usually lost so I stop going after a couple of times.

#2 - I would prescribe enough pain killer to keep the child from being in pain--I don't think you need to prescribe an overdose but I wouldn't worry about if it was near an overdose level if the pain were severe enough. I would also try and get some colleagues to sign on and I would consult with the hospital's legal staff as well as the patient's parents.


Rick Desper - #1 - I have an 'ex'?  I have children??  


#2 - Well, I am a doctor.  But they don't legally allow Ph.D.s to prescribe medicine, so no.


(Having trouble with the concept of 'hypothetical')


Phil Murphy - #1 - Yes. I find a hard truth easier to live with than an easy lie.  I'm a rotten liar (even by omission - I get urges to confess)  and a coward when it comes to being dishonest. (Except in Diplomacy, of course).

#2 – Ouch.... after a lot of thought, and seeing as I have to answer something:

I guess if the child is not expected to live longer than a few hours, I would ask the parents whether they would prefer this to ease the baby's pain. Otherwise, no.

I would find it very difficult to actually answer this for real, in all honesty. It would be better, given my own uncertainties, for me not to make the decision at all.


Robin ap Cynan - #1 - Depends on what I am legally required to do. If not legally required to do so, then I wouldn’t.


#2 - Probably.


Andy York - #1 - Yep,absolutely. Of course, this is a major "hypothetical" as I won't ever have an "ex" or a kid around.


#2 - No, not my decision and is against the Hippocratic oath that is the underpinning of the profession.


Don Williams - #1 - Yes, I would tell about the raise.  OK, I may be a Pollyanna here, but where’s the moral/ethical dilemma?  This is more about integrity than what’s ethical, right or wrong.  To not tell, if required by the settlement agreement regarding child support, is perjury or contempt or whatever.  Your chances of getting caught are significant to boot, so it’s dumb all the way around.  By the way, I paid a lot of child support through the 90s (until my kids came to live with me in a reverse custody arrangement), and I’m still paying alimony (ending this July God-be-praised!) so I may not be the most … uh, objective person on this question.


#2 - To answer this with a “yes” would be to: a) rob the parents of the truth and their rights; and, b) to commit first degree murder.  What a horrible, nasty little question, however hypothetical.


Tom Howell - #1 - Well, yeah.  I know a guy with what's known as a "lumpy income".  He works in the trades.  The benighted state of Washington, has among other things, revoked his driver's license for having missed child support payments.  Huh?  Now how's he supposed to earn any money if he's not supposed to be driving?  If the child support agreement calls for some equity, then it's better than some I know of.

#2 - Can you give more information?  Not enough to make that kind of decision on.  Practically speaking: as in an accidental overdose?  No, I'd be too careful with dosage calculations to be able to pass it off as "accident".  Someone would know.  That kind of thing can terminate a doctor's career.  Depending on where I came in as the doctor, and knowing more about the parents, there must be better ways to manage the situation without leaving an incriminating paper trail.


Heather Taylor - #1 – No, because the extra money that I am earning will not necessarily go towards my child.  With the extra money I could start saving for college, or give them more opportunities.  However, If I had a really good relationship with my ex and he was struggling financially, I might tell.


#2 – Yes, I would.  Doctors take an oath to do no harm, but in that instance I think mercy should prevail.  We can do this for animals, and I think we should be able to do this for humans.


For Next Month (For the time being, I am selecting questions from the game “A Question of Scruples” which was published in 1984 by High Games Enterprises.  The word Scruples is also being used as a secret this issue).  Remember you can make your answers as detailed as you wish.:  #1 – The restaurant which serves your favorite ethnic dishes is fined for exploiting immigrant labor.  Do you continue to eat there?  #2 – A close friend will be interviewed for a job with your employer.  He asks you for a list of the questions in advance.  Do you supply it?


The Dining Dead -
The Eternal Sunshine Movie Reviews


We never did get around to seeing movies in the theater this month, despite plans to do so.  “Lovely, Still” was on that list, yet it came to DVD so quickly we were still able to watch it.


Seen on DVD – Witch Hunt (B+, generally moving documentary on the Bakersfield, CA slew of child molestation convictions); Lovely, Still (B+, Martin Landau gives a strong performance in this tale of an elderly bachelor who suddenly finds romance).  The King of Kong (B-, despite rave reviews and a “lone man against the system” story I found this to be rather slow and boring).


You Don't Know Me

The Eternal Sunshine Interview


This month’s interview is with Raina Rose, who I had the honor of seeing live at a house concert in Denton earlier this month.  I actually had more questions I hoped to ask her, but there was only so much time available in our schedules.  Maybe she’ll return for a follow-up one day!  Raina was originally suggested as a candidate by last month’s victim, Bernice Campbell Hembree.  The intent of this column is not simply to interview musicians though.  So if you have any candidates for the next interview, email me!  They don’t need to be in the public eye in any way…


What is your name:  Raina Rose Klein McClellan


What is your astrological sign: Sun in Aquarius, moon in Gemini, rising is Aquarius


How old are you (exact or approximate): 28 and 3/4


What is your earliest childhood memory: Falling off a brick wall and landing on my forehead.


Describe your immediate family (present day): 3 wonderful, kind, smart, creative and compassionate people.


What do you do for a living: Sing songs


Where were you born: Hollywood, CA. No joke.


What did you want to be when you were growing up:  I wanted to be a rock star, a hair stylist and a truck driver. I currently do all 3 but only one for money.


Douglas Kent: Talk a bit about your development as a musician.  Who were your early influences?


Raina Rose: My Dad has a degree in the history of country & western music. When we were young, he would play old country, Lovin Spoonful & Beatles songs to my sister and me in the living room of our east LA home. When my sister got old enough they bought her an old record player and she went to a bunch of thrift store buying 60's pop music on vinyl. I would go to sleep listening to "Ladies of the Canyon" through the wall. I started taking guitar lessons at 11 and by the time I was in high school, I shined classes to play guitar in the park blocks of Portland, OR, where we had moved when I was 6.   I worked at summer camp after high school and was basically the jukebox.  I learned all sorts of campfire hits (Paul Simon, Beatles, Ani, Dar Williams, Joni Mitchell, & classic old folk songs) and my chops got better. I started writing songs at about 13...


Douglas Kent: The musical flavor of the Gypsy Moths is distinctively different than your solo CD's.  How has your approach to songwriting and music in general changed as you moved from one project to another?


Raina Rose: I was 19 years old when we started making the Gypsy Moths album, and I had had very little experience recording at that point. The songs weren't show tested; very few of them had been played out at all. So when we went to record them, we weren't familiar with them. There are a bunch of flaws on that album that are super obvious to me. At the same time, we were 19 and it was our first time. We didn't really have a producer and didn't quite get that that album would be around for listening 9 years later. I am glad it is around, even with the flaws though :) That was the only album made as the Gypsy Moths, a year or so later the band went from a duo to a 4-piece when we got a drummer and a bass player. Then it dissolved when we were about 23, I believe. That's when I started making my first solo record, Despite the Crushing Weight of Gravity with Jim Brunberg at Portland's Mississippi Studios. That was a really cool time, I was really fresh and excited and had started playing solo and felt that the world was mine to make brighter. I am a little more cynical now J


Douglas Kent: Can you name three songs you'd love to cover someday?


Raina Rose: Heroes by David Bowie, Don't Stop Believing by Journey, The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down by the Band.  We are thinking of making a covers album for fun.


Douglas Kent: How long do you generally go on the road for, and how many shows do you do during that time? 


Raina Rose: well, it really depends on who I am touring with and when the tour is. I have gone out anywhere from a weekend of 2 shows, to 6 months. Usually the time limit at the moment is 2-6 weeks. 2 weeks you still have your mind intact, 6 weeks on the road can make you absolutely crazy, but it's usually worth it. This fall Rebecca Loebe and I did 35 shows in 37 days. It was a very successful tour.


Douglas Kent: How would you describe your music and your musical style to someone who has never heard it before? 


Raina Rose: that is a really difficult question, because like any musician, I am doing the best job I can of being true to my artistic self and as unique as I can be... That is a difficult task when you are trying to make your art your business.  I have been saying "Sideways Americana Soul" at the moment. "Folk" & "Singer/Songwriter" are dirty words to some, indicating a self indulgent and cheesy art form ala Puff the Magic Dragon. Even though I have no problem with those words, I still try not to use them when describing myself.


Douglas Kent: Have you started writing for, and planning, your next CD? 


Raina Rose: I am always writing, and not usually with a purpose or a desired outcome. There is a new CD in the works, but unlike my past albums, I have absolutely no idea where I want to go with this one. I want it to be entirely different from my old work, but I don't know how. It's a hard spot to be.


Douglas Kent: Do you have any favorite on-stage collaboration you've been a part of, a one-time treat for yourself? 


Raina Rose: I love a good songwriter-in-the-round... You sit on stage with a few of your songwriting friends and it's like a big Rorschach test, each person plays one song at a time and it's a fun game to try to make it all cohesive. Some of my favorite people to do that with are: 3 Penny Acre, Rebecca Loebe, John Elliott, AJ Roach, Jack Wilson, Robby Hecht, Carrie Elkin, Nels Andrews & Danny Schmidt. I adore all of their writing.


Douglas Kent: What music do you listen to currently (when you have time to listen)?  Do you find that listening to new music by other artists inspires you to go different directions, or does it inhibit you because you don't want to write music too close to what you just heard? 


Raina Rose: I listen to a lot of different kinds of music... A lot of songwriter friends, whose work I directly relate with due to the fact that we're all in the same folk-boat. When you know someone personally, their songs take on a more personal appeal.  I don't really worry too much about my music sounding like other peoples'. Truly, everything has already been done, the most attractive songs to most people's ears have the same 3 chords in them as every other song. It's your approach and voice and perspective that make your music unique. It doesn't even have to be the best... music is subjective. What gets me deep in my heart might have no effect on you... Thank god. I think the only band that has universally touched people is the Beatles. I just try to be true to my own voice. It's the best I can do.


Douglas Kent: Unlike a lot of artists I have been listening to in the past year, while some of your songs are sarcastically angry (I Like You Better being a perfect example), I don't hear a lot of sadness in your music.  Do you think this is because you are a generally happy person, or are you shielding emotions from your work?  Or am I just not hearing (or recognizing) sadness that is there? 


Raina Rose: I don't tend to shield anything from my work. The songs tend to be my more true & clearly communicated emotions. I feel like there is a lot of sadness there... I kinda like that you don't feel it, though. One of my favorite things about songs & songwriting is the way a song takes on a whole new life for every person that hears it. My feelings about it and the meaning I put into are almost irrelevant, because you are going to hear it and transpose your own perspective and experience on it. I feel like my Blackwater, EP (which is almost out of print) is a pretty sad record. The last song on there was written in a really angry and heartbroken moment.  But to be honest, I am a mostly happy person, I have issues just like anyone, but my life is pretty damn beautiful.


Douglas Kent: What's your poison?


Raina Rose: really really good espresso. And Irish whiskey.


Douglas Kent: You have an opportunity, tomorrow night, to perform one of your songs with a full symphony orchestra behind you.  You can arrange the scoring of your song yourself, or have someone else do it.  What song do you choose?


Raina Rose: probably Bluebonnets which is the last track on When May Came. The songs has a lot more openness and flow than many of my others. I think it would allow for a lot of cool symphonic moments.


Douglas Kent: As you mentioned the Beatles, I am going to ask you to name your personal favorite Beatles album.


Raina Rose: Well, The White Album has probably spent more time in my CD player than any other album ever. It changed me. However, I may have to say that at this point in my life, Revolver is my favorite complete album.


Douglas Kent: Could you mention your five favorite books and movies of all time (for today, as for most of us that list changes)?


Raina Rose: Books (in no particular order):

The Mists of Avalon, Marion Zimmer Bradley

Dharma Bums, Jack Kerouac

Jitterbug Perfume, Tom Robbins

The Harry Potter Series (I don't care what anyone thinks, this story is epic and well told)

Born Standing Up, Steve Martin




Movies (in no particular order):

LA Story

The Last Waltz

Bob Dylan , Don't Look Back

The Big Lebowski

The Dark Crystal


Douglas Kent: If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?


Raina Rose: There's nothing I don't like about myself which couldn't change if I put my mind to it... So I'll say, I'll say I wish I had more willpower.


Pfft…how can Raina ever make the really big time without the obligatory self-loathing?  Grrr.  Then again, it hasn’t helped me any, maybe she’s got something there.  Be sure to visit her website at for more info on her music, or look for Raina on Facebook and Myspace.  Thanks for being the latest victim, Raina.  I wonder who will be next?



Meet Me In Montauk
The Eternal Sunshine Letter Column


Jack McHugh: I don't know any of these quotes..not a one...I looked them all up and I've only seen one of the movies that you have a quote from--A Beautiful Mind..the rest I've never seen (or heard of for that matter)....


[[I’m surprised you;ve never heard of at least a few more of them.  Many are terrific movies!]]


Paraic Reddington: Some comments on this issue #47’s By popular Demand: Andy York - "Passenger Pigeon" - how big are the pigeons where YOU live? Also, the UK is as much an island as Texas is. Nonsense.


[[Some would say Texas is an island of sanity surrounded by an asylum.]]


Andy Lischett: My brain hurts, so here are five of my favorite movie quotes for you to (I hope) agonize over:

1. Rank 1, Fire! Rank 2, Fire! Rank 3, Fire!
2. Dirt. Dirt in the fuel line. I just blowed it away.
3. Emayrgency! Emayrgency! Evryone to get from strit!
4. Ain't life a grin?
5. Goddamn horseshit American machinery. We wouldn't have this trouble if the Japanese won the war.

There is no common element although two of the quotes are from the same movie. A couple of them may not be exact word-for-word, but are close enough.


[[I recognized #2 right away, which led me to the other quote from that movie (I think).  #1 is too generic for even me.  I believe I recognize #3 as well.  #5 I probably should know, so I’ll think on it, and I have my guess for it just based on the era of the other films.  I’ll email them to you now.


How about the rest of you?  Any guesses?]]


Rick Desper: [[After submitting his Movie picks, then going to see which were right or wrong]] Apparently there are too many I haven't seen (Inventing the Abbots, Requiem for a Dream, House of Sand and Fog).  And too many that I don't think of her role in.  Little Children, for example, is a terrific Winslet film, and I'm annoyed I didn't catch that one.

[[Little Children is definitely a film where you can forget she’s in it, because of the strength of Winslet’s performance.]]

Oh well, at least I got "Pollock" right.  But I don't remember her being in that film at all.  If I had, that might have led to guessing Beautiful Mind, which might have led to Labyrinth...


[[If you know Labyrinth, it is sort of the key to the puzzle.  There is almost nothing else to take from that film which might be in common with the others.]]

I still can't find the quote about a man saying something in a forest...Google doesn't send me to any film. 




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

By Jack “Flapjack” McHugh –

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

Issue #26




Nothing new to report.  Still looking for work, but at least the number of interviews has been picking up slightly.  I haven’t completely given up hope.  I almost took a job as a car salesman, but changed my mind at the last minute; that was a wise decision on my part, I believe.  I just need to WORK, damn it!


This man had what he thought was the best tattoo in the world ... 

Until he went to prison.



Their Guy vs. Our Guy
Their Guy:  
In case you don’t know…these first few pics are of Vladimir Putin (Prime Minister of Russia).  

Our Guy:
KINDA SUMS IT UP, HUH?.................We're screwed!!


by Richard Walkerdine


President George W woke up in the middle of the night in the White House, seized with sudden doubts about some of his policies. He went out for a walk to think things over.


Stopping at the Jefferson Memorial he called out; “What should I do?”


A voice from the memorial replied; “Go to the people.”


Walking on, Bush found himself at the memorial to George Washington. “What should I do?” he repeated.


“Go to the people,” a voice again replied.


Bush walked on to the Lincoln Memorial. “What should I do?” he asked again.


The response came swiftly. “Go to the theatre.”





by Richard Walkerdine


The guests seem to be arriving quite early – this is obviously the high point of the zoo season. I can already see Mr and Mrs GAL-TIGER and their son BEN, Mr and Mrs PHANT and their daughter ELLIE, Mr and Mrs POTTAMUS and their layabout son Brian (usually just called ‘HIPPY’) and the MOSET twins with their old MA. This should be a good turnout tonight as there is still nearly twenty minutes before the official start time.


And yes, I see more guests arriving. There are Mr and Mrs THEGORILLA and their son GUY, the young PANTZEE son JIM with his girlfriend BARBARA MACAQUE and Amanda (usually known as MAND) RILLBABOON – I hear she is really good at dancing the ‘Funky Gibbon’. This should be a fun evening.


Goodness me they are flooding in now – I think a whole coach load just turned up. I can see Mr and Mrs MINGO and their lovely daughter Florence (usually known as FLA), Mr and Mrs AL and their son JACK, Mr and Mrs BACKEDWHALE and their son Humphrey (though his friends just call him HUMP), Mr and Mrs PARD and their son LEO, Mr and Mrs ARYSHEEP and their daughter Barbara (always known as BARB), Mr and Mrs SONSGAZELLE and their son TOM and they are followed by their relatives Mr and Mrs SGAZELLE and their son GRANT. Oh and look, bringing up the rear is my dear friend Ena Smith –HI ENA!


Please excuse me a moment while I sip a glass of wine – my mouth is getting quite dry. Ah, that’s better. And now I see MR and Mrs TISHWILDCAT and their son SCOT, Mr and Mrs STRELLEBAT and their daughter Penelope (always known as PIPI), Mr and Mrs MACAW and their daughter SCARLET, Mr and Mrs FLAMINGO and their daughter ROSY and Mr and Mrs DEBEEST and their son WILL. The hall is certainly getting rather full now.


But there are still more people arriving – goodness this is turning out to be a really popular event. There are Mr and Mrs ELOPE and their son Anthony (his friends just call him ANT), Mr and Mrs BATROSS and their son AL, Mr and Mrs REL and their lovely daughter Petula (always known as PET of course), Mrs AMANDER with her daughter Sally (well, usually called SAL – what a shame about her dad’s accident) and following them, all the way from Wales, are Mr and Mrs USMONKEY and their son REASE.


I think I need another glass of wine –probably means I will need a taxi to get home. But there are still a few more people arriving. There is one of the VER girls (I think it is BEA) and she seems to be accompanied by the impoverished CUPINE boy (that’s the POOR one of course). Following them I see Mr and Mrs AYWILDDOG and their son MAL, from the southern states I see Mr and Mrs PANDA and their son RED and they seem to be with their friends Mr and Mrs RIVERHOG with their son, also named RED. Surely all the guests have arrived by now?


But no, there are still a few more late arrivals – was the traffic bad today? For there I can see Mr and Mrs BERWOLF and their son TIM, Mr and Mrs ARBEAR with their daughter Polly (usually just called POL) and, bringing up the rear, Mr and Mrs PHANTSEAL and their daughter ELLIE.


No, wait, who is that slipping in at the back? Goodness it’s young Katy Simons – she is far too young to be here! I wonder, should I tell the officials that I SPIED HER?


But the (official) guests (Katy – you naughty girl!) have all now arrived and the doors have been closed.


(Author’s note. Many thanks to Alex Richardson for some good contributions but the rest of you sent nothing at all. Come on guys and gals, doesn’t a bit of harmless fun have any interest for you? But I will try again (and probably again and again after that!). So if anyone interested would like to send me ( suggestions for late arrivals at the ASTRONOMERS ball (you know, Mr and Mrs ROIDBELT and their daughter ASTER) by the next deadline I will collate them, add a few of my own, and the results will appear in the issue after that. You have been warned! Oh, and suggestions for future balls would also be very welcome.)



by Paul Milewski


I would have known that an e-mail I received recently was unmistakably sent from a small, handheld device, even before I got to the “Sent on the Sprint® Now Network from my BlackBerry®” at the end:


The med it is for me.

That German army could help vs. Russia.

I will be hoping to exploit I/A warfare for my gain.

I will build F Bre but it is no threat to you.


My first thought as I reflected on it was that these devices would lend themselves admirably to Haiku.  On further reflection, it is obvious that we adapt our communication styles to the means at hand.


William Burrill’s biography of Ernest Hemingway Hemingway: The Toronto Years (ISBN 0-385-25489-X) mentions “cablese” in connection with Hemingway having to cable stories about the 1922 Genoa Economic Conference to the Toronto Star:


To the surprise of the veteran journalists, Ernest used these drinking sessions to speak in glowing and exuberant terms of a whole new way of writing that he was discovering while filing his Star dispatches—“cablese.”  To the others, the stripped-down, skeletal style of cablese was merely a way to cut down on wire costs by eliminating unnecessary adverbs and adjectives.  But to Hemingway, who was new to the method, cablese was a revelation.  More than a neat trick of journalists, it struck him as one of those few true eureka experiences in an all too short life.


This reminded me another book I had read, The Victorian Internet by Tom Standage (ISBN 0-8027-1342-4), in which Standage wrote that:


Sending a message was a matter of going into the office of one of the telegraph companies and filling in a form giving … a message—expressed as briefly as possible, since messages were charged by the word, as well as by the distance from sender or receiver.


Standage adds parenthetically:


The original rate for transatlantic telegrams was £20—then about $100—for a minimum of ten words.  The cable actually became more profitable when the rate was halved and then halved again, because the lower prices attracted more customers.



Standage writes about a “new telegraph jargon” quickly emerging:


Rather than spell out every word (“PHILADELPHIA CALLING NEW YORK”) letter by letter in laborious detail, conventions arose by which telegraphers talked to each other over the wires using short abbreviations.  There was no single standard: different dialects or customs arose on different telegraph lines.  However, one listing of common abbreviations compiled in 1859 includes a “I I” (dot dot, dot dot) for “I AM READY”’ “G A” (dash dlash dot, dot dash) for “GO AHEAD”; “S F D” for “STOP FOR DINNER”; “G M” for “GOOD MORNING.”  This system enabled telegraphers to greet one another and handle most common situations as easily as if they were in the same room.  Numbers were also used as abbreviations: 1 meant “WAIT A MOMENT”; 2, “GET ANSWER IMMEDIATELY”; 33, “ANSWER PAID HERE.”


As an aside, my all time favorite book involving telegraphy is Barbara W. Tuchman’s The Zimmerman Telegram (ISBN 0-345-32425-0).  If you like intercepted messages, diplomatic skullduggery, and codes, this book is for you. 


An article Wikipedia states that:


Recent research by Rosen et al [Rosen, L.D., Chang, J., Erwin, L., Carrier, L.M., & Cheever, N.A. “The Relationship Between ‘textisms’ and Formal and Informal Writing Among Young Adults” in Communication Research] found that those young adults who used more language-based textisms (shortcuts such as LOL, 2nite, etc.) in daily writing produced worse formal writing than those young adults who used fewer linguistic textisms in daily writing. However, the exact opposite was true for informal writing. This suggests that perhaps the act of using textisms to shorten communication words leads young adults to produce more informal writing, which may then help them to be better "informal" writers.


The Wikipedia article goes on to state that:


A few competitions have been held between expert Morse code operators and expert SMS users. Several mobile phones have Morse code ring tones and alert messages. For example, many Nokia mobile phones have an option to beep "S M S" in Morse code when it receives a short message. Some of these phones could also play the Nokia slogan "Connecting people" in Morse code as a message tone. There are third-party applications available for some mobile phones that allow Morse input for short messages.


I didn’t know this, so in case you didn’t either, I’ll add that at the beginning of the Wikipedia article, it is explained that the original term for text messaging was Short Message Service (SMS) and what we call texting is still referred to as SMS in many parts of the world.  

Game Openings

Diplomacy (Black Press – Permanent Opening in ES): Signed up: Don Williams, needs six more to fill.  Sign up now!

Gunboat Diplomacy (Black Press): Signed up: Three, need four more to fill.  Sign up now!

Cline 9-Man Diplomacy V (Black Press): The most popular of the Cline 9-Man version.  Rules and map in ES #47.  Signed Up: Graham Wilson, Brad Wilson, Phil Murphy, needs six more.

Everybody Plays Diplomacy (Black Press): An ongoing everyone-plays variant.  Rules are in ES #47.  Join in at any time!

By Popular Demand: Game currently underway, join any time. 

Eternal Sunshine Movie Quote Quiz: 10 rounds, join any time.  You can find it at the end of the zine. 

Standby List: HELP!  I need standby players! – Current standby list: Graham Wilson, Jim Burgess (Dip only), Lance Anderson (Dip only), Martin Burgdorf, Paul Milewski (Dip only), Brad Wilson, Kevin Tighe (Dip only), Chris Babcock, Don Williams, and whoever I beg into it in an emergency.

I’m going to continue to go through my files and seeing what other variants I can offer, until I find one that gets enough interest to fill.  When I offer a variant I’ll give it an issue or two, but if nobody signs up I’ll drop the opening and replace it.  If somebody wants to guest-GM a game of anything, just get in touch.  If you have specific game requests please let me know.



Eternal Sunshine Game Section


Diplomacy “Wouldn’t It Be Nice?” 2008A, F 14


Austria (Kevin Wilson - ckevinw “of” A Bohemia Supports A Galicia,

 A Budapest Supports A Galicia, A Galicia Supports A Ukraine, A Ukraine Supports A Sevastopol,

 A Vienna Supports A Bohemia.

England (Jérémie LeFrançois - jeremie.lefrancois “of” Retreat F Mid-Atlantic Ocean - Brest..

 F Baltic Sea – Berlin, A Belgium – Ruhr, F Brest Supports F North Atlantic Ocean - Mid-Atlantic Ocean,

 A Burgundy Supports A Munich, F English Channel Supports F Brest, A Holland – Kiel,

 A Livonia Supports A Warsaw, A Moscow Hold, A Munich Hold, F North Atlantic Ocean - Mid-Atlantic Ocean,

 F North Sea - Norwegian Sea, F Portugal Supports F Spain(nc), A Prussia Supports A Silesia,

 A Silesia Supports A Munich, F Spain(nc) Supports F North Atlantic Ocean - Mid-Atlantic Ocean

 (*Dislodged*, can retreat to Gascony or OTB), A St Petersburg Supports A Moscow, A Warsaw Hold.

Italy (Don Williams – dwilliam “of” A Gascony – Marseilles, F Mid-Atlantic Ocean - Spain(sc),

 F North Africa - Mid-Atlantic Ocean (*Fails*), A Piedmont Supports A Gascony – Marseilles,

 A Tyrolia Supports A Bohemia, F Western Mediterranean Supports F Mid-Atlantic Ocean - Spain(sc).

Turkey (Brad Wilson - bwdolphin146 “of” A Armenia Gives Finger to Loony Persians (Holds),

 F Black Sea Supports A Sevastopol, A Bulgaria Supports A Rumania,

 F Gulf of Lyon Supports F Mid-Atlantic Ocean - Spain(sc), A Rumania Supports A Ukraine,

 A Sevastopol Supports A Ukraine.


A/E/I/T Draw Fails.  Now proposed: A/I/T, A/E/I/T Draws

Winter 1914/Spring 1915 Deadline is January 25th at 7:00am my time


Supply Center Chart


Austria:            Budapest, Greece, Serbia, Trieste, Vienna=5, Even

England:          Belgium, Berlin, Brest, Denmark, Edinburgh, Holland, Kiel, Liverpool, London, Moscow,

Munich, Norway, Paris, Portugal, St Petersburg, Sweden, Warsaw=17, Even or Build 1

Italy:                Marseilles, Naples, Rome, Spain, Tunis, Venice=6, Even

Turkey:            Ankara, Bulgaria, Constantinople, Rumania, Sevastopol, Smyrna=6, Even




England: Ok folks, you win, I do not think I can solo any more.


HANNIBAL to I.P.: Had them all the way!!

CON: I believe this is the longest Dip game, games-year wise, I've ever been in.

ANK: I have also not seen, in a game I was in at least, a power control 18 centers in the spring ... but not in the fall.

SMY: This game was lost for England by not having enough armies in France. France was the key battlefield, not Germany.







Diplomacy “Dulcinea” 2008C, W 10/S 11

Austria (Lance Anderson – lance_anderson “of” A Berlin Supports A Munich – Kiel,

 A Bohemia - Munich (*Fails*), A Munich - Kiel (*Fails*), A Piedmont - Marseilles (*Fails*),

 A Prussia Supports A Livonia, F Rome Supports F Tyrrhenian Sea (*Ordered to Move*),

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

 A Tyrolia Supports A Bohemia - Munich (*Fails*).

England (Philip Murphy trekkypj “of” Build A London..Army London visits Buckingham Palace;

 explores the Tate Modern; and enters the Tower of London (Holds), Fleet St Petersburg(nc) hunkers down and

 makes mildly rude gestures at the men in the Turkish helmets (Holds), A Finland Supports F St Petersburg(nc),

 A Gascony - Spain (*Fails*), F Mid-Atlantic Ocean - Portugal (*Fails*),

 F North Africa Supports F Western Mediterranean, F North Sea – Skagerrak,

 F Western Mediterranean Supports A Gascony - Spain (*Cut*).

France (Brad Wilson – bwdolphin146 ”of” F Portugal - Mid-Atlantic Ocean (*Fails*).

Germany (William Wood – wxmanwill “of”  A Kiel Supports A Ruhr (*Cut*),

 A Marseilles Hold, A Ruhr Supports A Kiel.

Turkey (Jim Burgess – jfburgess “of” Remove A Sevastopol..

 F Bulgaria(ec) Supports A Rumania, F Greece Supports F Bulgaria(ec), F Gulf of Lyon Unordered,

 F Ionian Sea Supports F Tunis, A Livonia Supports A Moscow - St Petersburg,

 A Moscow - St Petersburg (*Fails*), F Naples - Tyrrhenian Sea (*Fails*),

 F Spain(sc) Supports F Tyrrhenian Sea - Western Mediterranean (*Cut*),

 F Tunis Supports F Tyrrhenian Sea - Western Mediterranean,

 F Tyrrhenian Sea - Western Mediterranean (*Fails*).


Thanks to Kevin Tighe for the standby orders

Fall 1911 Deadline is January 25th at 7:00am my time




LISBON: Oops. Too much port and vinho verde for the French Grand Admiral, I am afraid.


Prime Minister to All: I hereby declare this day, WE LOVE THE PRIME MINISTER DAY, to be a permanent national holiday. All hail Prime Minister Philip!

Aus-P.M.: Into the darkness with you then.

PM to Kaiser: 
The Royal Navy stands ready to assist the Kriegsmarine in liberating Germany from the tyranny of the Turkish Sultan! We await your return cable from Kiel.



 “Dulcinea” Diplomacy Bourse



Billy Ray Valentine: No orders.


Duke of York: Sells 4 Francs.  Buys 2 Crowns.


Smaug the Dragon: Sells 250 Crowns.  Buys 526 Pounds, 266 Piastres.

Rothschild: Sells 500 Crowns, 500 Francs, and 500 Piastres.  Buys 1595 Pounds and 1821 Marks.


Baron Wuffet: Nuttin honey…


Wooden Nickel Enterprises: Sells 500 Crowns, 497 Piastres.  Buys 2411 Pounds.


VAIONT Enterprises: Sells 500 Piastres, 500 Crowns.  Buys 2417 Pounds.


Insider Trading LLC: No activity.


Bourse Master: Stands pat.


Next Bourse Deadline is January 24th at 7:00pm my time




Rothschild to Smaug: Got anything to say? No? Well shut up!


Duke of York to BOURSE MASTER: The Rothschilds have figured out the secret of manipulating the penny stock market.  Now we're in for a real blow.  How boring.....


Anonymous: So, Rothschild is cornering the market in Francs? Sounds like a bubble to me *readies sharp pin*.



Diplomacy “Just a Taste” 2009C, F 08

Austria (William Wood – wxmanwill “of” A Bulgaria Supports F Greece (*Dislodged*,

 retreat to Constantinople or OTB), F Greece Supports A Bulgaria (*Cut*).

France (Paraic Reddington - ): F Albania - Greece (*Fails*),

 F Apulia - Ionian Sea (*Bounce*), A Burgundy Hold, F Ionian Sea - Aegean Sea (*Fails*),

 F Mid-Atlantic Ocean Hold, F North Atlantic Ocean Hold, A Paris – Picardy, A Trieste – Serbia,

 F Tunis Supports F Apulia - Ionian Sea, A Tyrolia – Trieste, F Tyrrhenian Sea Supports F Apulia - Ionian Sea,

 A Venice Supports A Tyrolia – Trieste, A Yorkshire - Edinburgh.

Germany (Philip Murphy trekkypj “of” Fleet Barents Sea - 20,000 Leagues under the Sea (Holds), Fleet Norwegian Sea - Honolulu (Holds), Army Munich sits tight and breaks out the cigars (Holds),

 A Bohemia U, A Budapest U, A Galicia U, F Livonia - Gulf of Bothnia, A Moscow - Sevastopol (*Fails*),

 A Prussia – Livonia, A Rumania Supports A Serbia – Bulgaria, A Serbia – Bulgaria,

 A Sevastopol - Armenia (*Fails*), A Silesia Supports A Rumania (*Fails*),

 A Ukraine Supports A Moscow - Sevastopol (*Fails*).
Turkey (Graham Wilson – grahamaw “of” Retreat F Ionian Sea - Adriatic Sea,

 A Sevastopol - Armenia.. F Adriatic Sea - Ionian Sea (*Bounce*),

 F Aegean Sea Supports F Adriatic Sea - Ionian Sea, A Armenia - Sevastopol (*Fails*),

 F Eastern Mediterranean Supports F Adriatic Sea - Ionian Sea.


Now Proposed – Concession to Germany

W 08/S 09 deadline is January 25th at 7:00am my time


Supply Center Chart


Austria:            Greece, Constantinople(?)=1 or 2, Even

France:            Belgium, Brest, Edinburgh, Liverpool, London, Marseilles, Naples, Paris, Portugal,

Rome, Serbia, Spain, Trieste, Tunis, Venice=15, Build 2

Germany:         Berlin, Budapest, Bulgaria, Denmark, Holland, Kiel, Moscow, Munich, Norway, Rumania,

                        Sevastopol, St Petersburg, Sweden, Vienna, Warsaw=15, Build 1

Turkey:            Ankara, Constantinople(?), Smyrna=2 or 3, Remove 1 or 2





F to All: And the guns fell silent. As the echoes of those deafening roars faded, so the acrid smoke cleared and drifted away like morning mist burned off by the promising sun. No man's land was empty now save for a small round object in the middle. A soccer ball. The whistle sounded and once again, like countless times before, the men clambered out of their trenches with a cheer. Only this time it was different. This time it really was war!


Turkey -> France: Ahh, the sweetness of second place, made even sweeter by the knowledge that you could have been first...


G to F - Burn things? Here, have a cigar. Finest Cuban!

Kaiser to All: Ich bin der Kaiser Wilhelm Ich bin! Wilhelm Zwei ich bin, ich bin!

G to T and F: Now now... there's plenty of Turkey to go around. No need to go grabbing my fair share!


White Press Diplomacy “Creepshow” 2009D, W 06/S 07

England (Chuy Cronin – chuykdc_92 “of” Build F Liverpool.. F Barents Sea - Norwegian Sea,

 F Denmark - Kiel (*Fails*), F Liverpool - Irish Sea, F North Sea Convoys A Yorkshire – Norway,

 A Yorkshire - Norway.

France (Michael Cronin – mfmcronin “of” Retreat A Munich - Burgundy.. Build A Paris..

 A Belgium Supports A Ruhr – Holland, A Burgundy – Ruhr, F English Channel - Mid-Atlantic Ocean,

 A Marseilles – Piedmont, A Paris – Picardy, A Ruhr - Holland.

Germany (Pat Vogelsang – godawgsgo33 “of” A Berlin Supports A Munich,

 F Holland - North Sea (*Dislodged*, ret Helgoland Bight or OTB), A Kiel Supports A Munich (*Cut*),

 A Munich Supports A Berlin.

Italy (Graham Wilson – grahamaw “of” Remove A Apulia.. A Prussia - Warsaw (*Disbanded*).

Russia (Kevin Wilson - ckevinw “of” A Bohemia Supports A Silesia,

 A Livonia Supports A Warsaw – Prussia, F Rumania S Pax Cronini (Holds), A Silesia Supports A Bohemia,

 F St Petersburg(nc) - Barents Sea, F Sweden Hold, A Tyrolia Supports A Bohemia, A Warsaw - Prussia.

Turkey (Larry Cronin – lcroninmd “of” Build A Smyrna, F Constantinople..A Bulgaria S Pax Cronini (Holds), F Venice S Pax Cronini (Holds), A Trieste S Pax Cronini (Holds), F Aegean Sea - Ionian Sea,

 F Constantinople - Aegean Sea, F Ionian Sea - Tyrrhenian Sea, F Naples Supports A Rome – Apulia,

 A Rome – Apulia, A Smyrna – Syria, F Tyrrhenian Sea - Western Mediterranean.


E/F/R/T Draw Fails

Summer/Fall 07 Deadline is January 25th at 7:00am my time




Italy -> Russia: Well, that didn't work out quite as I had planned.  Oh well...


Germany: 4 way tie... really.... everyone wants a trophy? Man up folks.


Turkey to the World of diplomacy: Turkey is preparing to attempt a rare move, seen only under the Wilsonian Pax Cronini in the extraordinary Diplomacy Zine, Eternal Sunshine! We will attempt to convoy an army Syria to St. Petersburg. Then following this strange feat, Russia will convoy an army St. Petersburg to Syria. Doug Kent will be able to say it was done only in his zine and publish this accomplishment in Diplomacy World, on which he has a monopoly of his own! This shall forever be known as "The Russian Crepe Show Maneuver" or "The Turkish Blintz".  To do this I must vote "no" on the formerly proposed Draws


Diplomacy “Bellicus” from Strange Meeting, End Game



Italy (David Latimer) - I'd almost forgotten that this game started in 'Strange Meeting'.  Thanks to Stephen Agar for starting it and finding a new home when circumstances required it.  Then thanks, of course, to Doug for taking over the game in Eternal Sunshine.  And his patience with last-minute ordering players like myself!


Onto the game: Italy is known as a difficult power but while an outright win may be unlikely there is a lot of fun and potential influence to be had!  You need to deal with everyone (apart from England perhaps) and have the potential to influence what happens in the middle of the board.


An over-trusting Austria gave me a strong start and with a non-hostile France moving North, Italy had the opportunity for a long game. When I discovered just how much of a Diplomacy player that Russia (Chris) was, I had a dilemma.  Do I try with others to defeat/contain him or should I attempt to be a world conquering ally and somehow turn the tables at the end?!  At one point I think I was plotting both at the same time!


There was a lot of communication between Italy, Russia and Turkey.  Could two pair up or was there too much suspicion?  I think I missed out on the crucial moment which might have resulted in Russia/Italy taking on Turkey but my weakness of not always replying quickly to emails (surprise, surprise, eh Doug!) meant I missed the opportunity and once Turkey stabbed me as well, the end of Italy was inevitable!


Well done Russia, although I feel Turkey and others should have tried harder to stop him earlier!


Black Press Gunboat, “Maple Sugar,” 2009Crb32, W 08/S 09

Austria: Remove A Silesia.. A Apulia – Venice, A Budapest – Vienna, A Trieste Supports A Venice – Tyrolia,

 A Venice - Tyrolia.

England: F Edinburgh - Norwegian Sea (*Bounce*), F Western Mediterranean Supports F Mid-Atlantic Ocean –

 North Africa.

France: F Tunis Hold.

Germany: Build A Kiel.. A Berlin - Prussia (*Fails*), A Bohemia Supports A Munich – Silesia,

 A Kiel - Berlin (*Fails*), A Marseilles - Piedmont (*Fails*), F Mid-Atlantic Ocean - North Africa,

 A Munich – Silesia, F North Sea - Norwegian Sea (*Bounce*), A Piedmont - Tyrolia (*Fails*),

 A Prussia - Livonia (*Bounce*), F Skagerrak – Norway, A Spain - Marseilles (*Fails*),

 F Sweden Supports F Skagerrak - Norway.

Italy: F Naples Supports A Rome, A Rome Supports F Naples.

Russia: Remove A Galicia.. F Norway Hold (*Dislodged*, retreat to St Petersburg(nc) or Barents Sea or OTB),

 F Norwegian Sea Supports F Norway (*Cut*), F Sevastopol Hold (*Disbanded*), A Ukraine – Moscow,

 A Warsaw - Livonia (*Bounce*).

Turkey: Build F Smyrna.. F Aegean Sea - Ionian Sea, A Armenia Supports F Rumania – Sevastopol,

 F Constantinople - Black Sea, F Ionian Sea - Adriatic Sea, F Rumania – Sevastopol, A Serbia – Rumania,

 F Smyrna - Aegean Sea.


Concession to Germany Fails

Summer/Fall 09 Deadline is January 25th at 7:00am my time




England -> Germany: If you are in Naf, I shall support you into Tun in the spring.


AH: Here I think Germany has this game in the bag and he NMRs. Unless this continues he still can win.  Russia however once again has a chance to slow him down by moving to Lvn. Doubt if he will leave Gal to do so. 

AH to my buddy Turkey: if Bud is empty or occupied by Russia attack it from Serbia.  Help out your minor ally and attack Naples again in the fall if A Ven, Apu; I will attack or support depending upon circumstance.  I attacked Tyo from Ven with support Tri.

Germany - All: Things were going so well that the Kaiser took a holiday but neglected to send orders to the troops. Apologies?


T => A: If it looks reasonable, I shall order F Adriatic Sea S A A Apulia - Venice: You might need A Venice to protect Trieste.


T => R: You were very lucky that anarchy broke out in Germany, just when the Emperor was about to win this war.


AH to R: Your attack from Ser-Gre sealed your fate and mine by crippling my ability to keep Turkey in check and out of Gre.

R-World: Repeat! everyone attack germany and forget ur struggles...the kaiser must fall!

AH to Italy: Your idea to move all the way to Boh was not bad, I have done same in past.  Where you went wrong was in attacking France at the same time. Doing so put Germany in driver seat.



Graustark Game 2002D, W 18/S 19

England (Fred Wiedemeyerwiedem “of” F Barents Sea - Norwegian Sea,

 F Clyde - North Atlantic Ocean (*Bounce*), F London Supports F Norway - North Sea,

 A Moscow - St Petersburg (*Disbanded*), F Norway - North Sea, A St Petersburg - Norway.

France (Andy Lischettandy “of” Build F Brest, Build A Paris.. F Aegean Sea – Smyrna,

 F Brest - Mid-Atlantic Ocean (*Fails*), A Bulgaria Supports A Serbia, A Burgundy Hold,

 F Constantinople Supports A Bulgaria, F English Channel Convoys A Picardy – Wales, F Ionian Sea Hold,

 F Irish Sea Supports A Picardy – Wales, F Mid-Atlantic Ocean - North Atlantic Ocean (*Bounce*),

 A Paris – Picardy, A Picardy – Wales, A Rome – Tuscany, A Serbia Supports A Trieste,

 A Trieste Supports A Serbia, A Venice Supports A Trieste, F Western Mediterranean Hold.

Germany (Michael Quirk – michaelpquirk “of” Build F Kiel.. A Ankara Hold, F Baltic Sea – Sweden,

 A Budapest Supports A Rumania, A Galicia – Warsaw, F Gulf of Bothnia - St Petersburg(sc) (*Bounce*),

 F Kiel – Denmark, A Munich Hold, A Rumania Supports A Budapest, A Sevastopol Supports A Ukraine – Moscow,

 A Ukraine – Moscow, A Vienna Supports A Budapest, A Warsaw - Livonia.


E/F/G Draw Fails. Now Proposed – F/G and E/F/G Draws.

Fall 1919 Deadline is January 25th at 7:00am my time



None…you guys suck.


Graustark Diplomacy Game 2006A, W 08/S 09

Austria (Don Williams – dwilliams “of” Retreat F Greece - Ionian Sea.. Remove A Bohemia..

 A Budapest Supports A Galicia – Rumania, A Galicia - Rumania (*Fails*),

 F Ionian Sea Supports A Trieste – Albania, A Trieste – Albania, A Vienna - Trieste.

England (Fred Wiedemeyerwiedem “of” Build A London.. F Brest Supports F North

 Atlantic Ocean - Mid-Atlantic Ocean, F English Channel Convoys A London – Picardy,

 F Irish Sea Supports F North Atlantic Ocean - Mid-Atlantic Ocean, A London – Picardy,

 F North Atlantic Ocean - Mid-Atlantic Ocean (*Fails*), F Norway Supports F St Petersburg(nc),

 A Paris - Gascony (*Fails*), F St Petersburg(nc) Supports F Norway.

France (Hank Almealmehj “of” F Portugal Supports F Mid-Atlantic Ocean.

Germany (Harley Jordanharleyj “of” F Baltic Sea Hold, A Berlin – Munich,

 A Burgundy - Marseilles (*Fails*), A Kiel – Ruhr, A Munich – Tyrolia, A Silesia Supports A Berlin - Munich.

Italy (Jim Burgess – jfburgess “of” F Gascony Supports F Mid-Atlantic Ocean (*Cut*),

 A Marseilles Supports F Gascony (*Cut*), F Mid-Atlantic Ocean Supports F Gascony (*Cut*),

 F North Africa Supports F Mid-Atlantic Ocean, A Spain Supports F Gascony,

 F Western Mediterranean Supports F Mid-Atlantic Ocean.

Russia (John Biehljerbil “of” Build A Moscow, A Sevastopol.. F Aegean Sea Hold,

 A Bulgaria Supports A Sevastopol – Rumania, A Greece – Serbia, A Livonia – Moscow, A Moscow – Sevastopol,

 A Sevastopol – Rumania, A Ukraine Supports A Sevastopol – Rumania, A Warsaw - Galicia (*Fails*).


Fall 09 Deadline is January 25th at 7:00am my time





Italy to the Board: Hank and I have a line over here, I think we need to see what sorts out in the East next?  I made it easier by being "out of the game" in the Balkans.  Now it is up to you two!


Black Press Gunboat, “Scream” 2010Brb32, W 01/S 02


Austria: Build A Budapest.. A Budapest Supports A Serbia, A Serbia Supports A Budapest (*Cut*),

 F Trieste Hold, A Vienna - Galicia (*Fails*).

England: Build A Liverpool, F Edinburgh.. F Belgium Hold (*Disbanded*), F Edinburgh - Norwegian Sea,

 A Liverpool – Wales, F North Sea Supports F Belgium (*Cut*),

 A Norway Hold (*Dislodged*, retreat Finland or OTB).

France: Build F Marseilles.. A Brest – Picardy, F Irish Sea - English Channel, F Marseilles - Spain(sc),

 A Spain - Portugal.

Germany: Build F Kiel, A Munich.. F Denmark - North Sea (*Fails*), A Holland – Belgium, F Kiel – Holland,

 A Munich – Burgundy, A Ruhr Supports A Holland - Belgium.

Italy: Build A Rome.. F Ionian Sea Convoys A Tunis – Greece, A Rome – Tuscany, A Tunis – Greece,

 A Venice - Trieste (*Fails*).

Russia: Build A Warsaw, F St Petersburg(nc).. A Galicia – Bohemia, A Rumania Supports A Warsaw – Galicia,

 F Sevastopol Supports A Rumania, F St Petersburg(nc) – Norway,

 F Sweden Supports F St Petersburg(nc) – Norway, A Warsaw - Galicia.

Turkey: Build F Smyrna.. F Ankara - Constantinople (*Fails*), A Bulgaria - Serbia (*Fails*),

 A Constantinople - Bulgaria (*Fails*), F Smyrna - Aegean Sea.


Fall 1902 Deadline is January 25th at 7:00am my time




captains log unknown. the enterprize the exelcer and the troop transport the f.d.r. have been transported to an alternate universe.
the universal translator is down.
mr.spok thinks if he where to run the universal translator matrix through the deflector dish that we might be able to send a message.
the problem with this idea is the message would be broadcast on an open channel.
every alien group in this universe would receive the message simultaneously and
to make matters worse they would have no way of determining the origon of the message.
so far we have surveid 5 m clss planets that have dylitheam and we are sending spare members of the enterprize and the f.d.r. to start colonies on the 5 planets.
we can't start a coloney with troops from the exelcor because mr. sulu entire crew is made up of men.
the coloney would have no way to grow so we are using mr. sulus men to supplement missing crewman on the enterprize and the f.d.r.
we do have a situation to deal with. the exelcor accidentaly navagated to close to an occupied
alien planet.
the excelcor moved out and is orbiting one of the m class planets we surveid for colonozation.
as a result the aliens have sent a star ship and is orbiting one of our other m class planets we call new vulcan. [suddenly captain kirks com pic lights up and the familiar voice of mr.spok is piped thru]. kirk; kirk here! spok; captain we have identified that alien ship orbiting new vulkan.
kirk; who are they? spok; ROMULANS!!!


BERLIN to PARIS: You stupid ass.

Vienna to Rome: I will support you to Gre next turn.

Germany-France: Let's kick England's butt! I'll get him off the continent while you take him from the rear.


ENGLAND TO FRANCE: when i said stay out of the english channel, i didn't mean go to the irish die, die, die!!!


Russia to Austria and Italy: Well, Turkey's ploy didn't work, I think it is time for me to come to your rescue, time for a Turkish feast!


Turkey to the Balkans: I didn't mean that, I'll be a peaceful governor of Greece if you help me help you, I promise.


Germany-England: I agree, let's go all out on the arrogant Frenchman


ITALY TO TURKEY: Forget it, I don't need any allience with people like you.  Bring it on, let our fleets clash in the Med.


Russia-Germany: Blue Man Group is GOING DOWN!


France-Germany: Ok. As long as you don't do it again.


Berlin-Rome: Nice music. Now take out those frogs.


Germany-Russia: Did you like that? How can I help you get farther?


Berlin-Vienna: How can I help, except for cheerleading?


Turkey to Russia: You can move Sev out through Con. All out RT.

Berlin to London: In return for my support into Swe, I expect Nth-Nwy and a DMZ of Nth.

Turkey to Italy: You have Gre, I'll have Ser. DMZ Ion.

PARIS to LONDON: You first.


Diplomacy “Dublin Boys” 2010D, Spring 1901 Delayed


Zachary Jarvie failed to submit orders for Austria.  Therefore the game is delayed and he is removed, to be replaced by Paul Milewski.


Austria (Paul Milewskipaul.milewski “of” Has F Tri, A Vie, A Bud.

England (Kevin Tighetigheman “of” Has F Lon, A Lvp, F Edi.

France (Jeff O’Donnell – unclestaush “of” Has F Bre, A Par, A Mar.

Germany (Melinda Holley – genea5613 “of” Has F Kie, A Ber, A Mun.

Italy (Hank Almealmehj “of” Has A Ven, A Rom, F Nap.

Russia (Jack McHugh jwmchughjr “of” Has F StP(sc), A War, A Mos, F Sev.

Turkey (Brad Wilson - bwdolphin146 “of” Has F Ank, A Con, A Smy.

New Spring 1901 Deadline is January 25th at 7:00am my time



Everybody Plays Diplomacy “Dandelion” 2010?, Winter 1900

Player Names or Handles will be shown for any power they commanded each season.

Remember, in some seasons if we get enough players you may notwind up commanding any nations.

Austria (David McCrumb): Build A Budapest, A Vienna, A Trieste.

England (Paraic Reddington): Build F Edinburgh, F London, F Liverpool.

France (Robin ap Cynan): Build F Brest, A Paris, F Marseilles.

Germany (Jack McHugh): Build A Berlin, A Kiel, A Munich.

Italy (Tasker): Build F Venice, F Naples, F Rome.

Russia (Tom Howell): Build F Sevastopol, F St. Petersburg(sc), A Moscow, A Warsaw.

Turkey (Phil Murphy): Build F Smyrna, F Ankara, F Constantinople.


Spring 1901 Deadline is January 25th at 7:00am my time


Tasker – World: I will kick thy booty!!


By Popular Demand


Credit goes to Ryk Downes, I believe, for inventing this.  The goal is to pick something that fits the category and will be the "most popular" answer. You score points based on the number of entries that match yours. For example, if the category is "Cats" and the responses were 7 for Persian, 3 for Calico and 1 for Siamese, everyone who said Persian would get 7 points, Calico 3 and the lone Siamese would score 1 point. The cumulative total over 10 rounds will determine the overall winner. Anyone may enter at any point, starting with an equivalent point total of the lowest cumulative score from the previous round. If a person misses a round, they'll receive the minimum score from the round added to their cumulative total. In each round you may specify one of your answers as your Joker answer.  Your score for this answer will be doubled.  In other words, if you apply your Joker to category 3 on a given turn, and 4 other people give the same answer as you, you get 10 points instead of 5.  Players who fail to submit a Joker for any specific turn will have their Joker automatically applied to the first category. And, if you want to submit some commentary with your answers, feel free to.  The game will consist of 10 rounds.  A prize will be awarded to the winner.  Research is permitted!


Round 5 Categories

1. A prehistoric era.

2. A medication taken for pain.

3. A Knight of the Round Table

4. A magazine that generally only women buy.

5. A Diplomacy power.


Congrats to Rick Desper who missed the highest possible score of 102 by only 4 points!


Selected Comments By Category:

Prehistoric Era –Brendan Whyte “Geological or anthropological?”  Michael Moulton “My first thought was Jurassic, but it turns out that's not an era. Now it'll probably end up being the most popular answer!”  Dane Maslen “For number 1 I have assumed that most people are not familiar with geologic terminology and will not realize that the Jurassic is a period rather than an era (it's actually part of the Mesozoic era).  I'm sufficiently confident of this misconception that I'll risk playing my joker here.”  Pat Vogelsang “Thank you Crichton/Spielberg.”  Phil Murphy ”Remember kids, raptors may be cute but they make poor pets.  So if your parents land on a remote island to sunbathe, make sure not to forget your gun.”

Pain MedicationDane Maslen “I think number 2 might prove a mess.  I would have preferred to have answered 'paracetamol', but that's not what you tend to call it in the USA.  I suspect you're likely to get multiple answers that all refer to the same medication but by a variety of brand names, common names or even chemical names.”

Knight – Brendan Whyte “Sir Cumsize comes to mind.”  Michael Moulton “Sir Lancelot is the only one I can think of off the top of my head, hopefully no one will get fancy.”  Marc Ellingerit can’t be King Arthur, since he was the king and not a knight!!  Although my favorite was always Sir Tristram (especially in the original Le Morte D’Arthur).”


Woman’s Magazine – Kevin Tighe “Did you know that feminist chicks dig me?”  Marc Ellinger “If Oprah writes it, women buy it.  Except my wife, which is just one more reason to love her!!!  Jim Burgess “This is the "Good Housekeeping" vs. "Cosmopolitan" question.  Let's go with Good Housekeeping.”


Diplomacy Power – Per Westling “Guess I should answer Russia, as it is largest, or England, as it is closest to most in this game it seems, but I go for Italy as it is my favorite.”  Jim Burgess “I want to say Italy, but it won't be most popular answer.”  Phil Murphy “Wicked Witch of the East, or of the North? Such a hard choice.”


Round 6 Categories – Deadline is January 25th at 7:00am my time

1. A former U.S. Vice President.

2. A brand of children’s cereal.

3. A common pet other than a cat or a dog.

4. A horror movie.

5. A Christmas carol.




Eternal Sunshine Movie Quote Contest


There are ten rounds of movie quotes, and each round consists of ten quotes.  Anyone may enter at any point. If you want to submit some commentary with your answers, feel free to.  The game will consist of 10 rounds.  A prize will be awarded to the winner – and it might be a very good prize!  Research is not permitted!  That means NO RESEARCH OF ANY KIND, not just no searches for the quotes themselves.  The only legal “research” is watching movies to try and locate quotes.  Try to avoid the temptation to Google the quotes.  I’m doing many of the quotes from memory anyway, so you won’t necessarily be able to find them by direct search…so don’t try!  Each round will also contain one bonus question, asking what the ten movies being quoted have in common.  The player with the most correct answers each round gets 3 points, 2nd place gets 2 points, and 3rd place gets 1 point.  In the event of ties, multiple players get the points (if three players tie for first, they EACH get 3 points).  High score at the end of ten rounds wins the game, and a prize (unless you cheated).  If there’s enough participation I may give a prize for 2nd and maybe even 3rd place overall too.  Quotes may contain more than one person speaking (in other words, part of a scene with more than one character talking).  In those instances, quotes will separate the characters speaking.  I also plan on making the 10th round worth double points.


Round Three


#1. You do realize you may be the only person at this party with artificial sideburns?  Inventing the Abbotts.  Terms of Endearment – AL.  Reservation Road – KT.  Wild Wild West – RD.


#2. This isn't America, Jack. This is L.A.  Mulholland Falls, Correct - KT.  Chinatown – AL.  Escape from LA – PR.  LA Confidential – RD, JB.


#3. California, Florida, whatever. Either way, your pale ass is getting a tan.  Requiem for a Dream.  Terms of Endearment – AL.  Hot Spot – KT.  Ger Shorty – RD.


#4. If a man stands in a forest, with no woman around, is he still wrong?  Reservation Road.  The Witches of Eastwick – AL.  Blood Diamond – KT.  As Good as it Gets – RD.


#5. And you wouldn't be so brave if you'd ever smelled the Bog of Eternal Stench.  Labyrinth, Correct – PR, KT, HT, JB.  Monty Python and the Holy Grail – RD.


#6. There has to be a mathematical explanation for how bad that tie is.  A Beautiful Mind, Correct – PR, KT, JB.  As Good as it Gets – AL.  Real Genius – RD.


#7. You are probably wondering why I keep appearing in your memories, John. It is because I have inserted myself into them.  Dark City, Correct – KT, JB.  Being John Malkovich – PR.  The Shining – AL.  Total Recall – HT.  Vanilla Sky – RD.


#8. If people would just look at the paintings, I don't think they would have any trouble enjoying them. It's like looking at a bed of flowers: you don't tear your hair out over what it means.  Pollock, Correct – KT, RD, JB.  As Good as it Gets – AL.


#9. My professors would kill me for even thinking this, but in her own strange way, Emma Bovary is a feminist.  Little Children, Correct - KT.  Annie Hall – RD.


#10. Perhaps you did not come here to live like a Gypsy, but I did not come here to work like an Arab.  House of Sand and Fog, Correct - KT.  Chocolat – RD.


Bonus: What do all these films have in common? Jennifer Connelly Appears in All of Them, Correct – KT, JB.   All Based on a Book of a Different Name – PR.  All Feature Jack Nicholson – AL.  They All Feature a Historian Being Stabbed By a Knight With a Sword – RD.


Scores For This Round: Kevin Tighe [KT] – 8; Jim Burgess [JB] – 5; Paraic Reddington [PR] – 2; Heather Taylor [HT] – 1; Rick Desper [RD] – 1; Andy Lischett [AL] - 0


Total Game Points: Jim Burgess – 7; Rick Desper – 4; Kevin Tighe – 4; Jack McHugh – 3; Paraic Reddington – 3.

Round Four


#1. Like that man told you in the movies last night: beware of the midgets. They're taking over the world.


#2. You shouldn't keep souvenirs of a killing. You shouldn't have been that sentimental.


#3. If you say anything about politics, or the campaign, or what speech you have to give, or anything, I swear to God I'm going to stab you with this fork.


#4. The guy had a rap sheet as long as my dick.


#5. We don't belong here? On the contrary, Herbert. I belong here completely and utterly. I'm home.


#6. Think of it as a great vacation, except you don't go to it, it comes to you.


#7. I've been in prison for three years. My dick gets hard if the wind blows.


#8. I hope they don't hang you, precious, by that sweet neck.


#9. Well it hurts, because every time you hoped for something I couldn't deliver, it hurt. It hurt me Mommy.


#10. No, sir, the one who isn't my fiancée doesn't call me Howard, and the one who isn't my wife doesn't call me Howard, because the one who isn't my fiancée is also the one who isn't my wife.


Deadline for your answers to Round 4: January 25th at 7:00am my time




General Deadline for the Next Issue of Eternal Sunshine:  January 25th, 2011 at 7:00am my time.  See You Then!