Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Om werk toe te ry

Ek het vandag my fiets amper vier myl werk toe gery. Die heuwels is moeilik, maar ek het dit in vyf-en-twintig minute gedoen! Ek's 'n bietjie moeg, maar voel goed. Vir my Afrikaanse vriende, hoe sê jy "exercise" in die taal? Is dit "oefening"?

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Diwali

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Rugby

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Byki

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Twee Muise

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Boomplantdag

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Fietse

Friday, August 14, 2009

Feesvierings

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Bunny Chow

Monday, August 03, 2009

Vertaal in Afrikaans

On the Learn-Afrikaans yahoogroup, translation drills are posted on a regular basis. Here's my most recent attempt at one from Johan van Breda of Capetown:

Language is a skin: I rub my language against the other. It is as if I had words instead of fingers, or fingers at the tip of my words. My language trembles with desire. – Roland Barthes, literary critic and philosopher (1915 – 1980).

Taal is 'n vel: ek vryf my taal teen die ander. Dit is asof ek het woorde instede van vingers of vingers by die punt van my woorde. My taal bewe met sug. -- Roland Barthes, letterkundig kritikus en filosoof (1915-1980).

***

I just got corrections back from Johan:

Taal is 'n vel: ek vryf my taal teen ander. Dit is asof ek woorde in plaas van vingers het, of vingers aan die punte van my woorde. My taal bewe van begeerlikheid. – Roland Barthes, literêre kritikus en filosoof (1915 – 1980).

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Saturday, August 01, 2009

Comic Con 2009

Monday, July 20, 2009

Vrugte en Groente

(Fruits and Vegetables)

Vandag het ek en 'n vriend Clementstraat toe gekuier. Dis San Francisco se tweede Sjinastad. Daar is baie Sjinese restaurante, maar ons het vir middagete Burma Superstar toe gegaan. Die kos was heerlik!

Ek het van Clementstraat se winkels se goedkoop vrugte en groente vir my Youtube video gekoop:



Today, a friend and I visited Clement Street. It's San Francisco's second Chinatown. There are many Chinese restaurants, but we went to Burma Superstar for lunch. The food was delicious!

I bought cheap fruits and vegetables from Clement Street's shops for my Youtube video.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Sjinese Kos

Vandag voel ek bietjie siek. Gisteraand het ek baie speseryagtig en branderig Sjinese kos geëet. Ek het vegetariese Hunan ham en Sjinese brokkoli bestel. Dit was heerlik (ek baie hou van rooi peper), maar ek het te veel geëet!

Vandag se kanji: 中華の食べ物 Sjinese kos
中華の, ちゅうか, Middel Prag* se
食べ物, たべもの, eet voorwerp

私は中華の食べ物を食べました。
Ek het Sjinese kos geëet.

* Sjina se oude naam was Middel Koninkryk.

Today I feel a little sick. Last night, I ate Chinese food that was really spicy and hot. I ordered vegetarian Hunan ham and Chinese broccoli. It was delicious (I really like red pepper), but I ate too much!

Today's kanji: 中華の食べ物 Chinese food
中華の, ちゅうか, Middle Splendor's *
食べ物, たべもの, eating thing

私は中華の食べ物を食べました。
I ate Chinese food.

* China's ancient name was Middle Kingdom.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

KO2: One Little Word

Not only do fans create characters for the Pride High universe, they create comics, too! Check out Anne Cain's cover draft for Kid Olympus #2: One Little Word, written by Feargal Keenan.



Vandag se kanji: 今日 vandag
きょう, 今 nou + 日 dag

今日はアンが「キッドオリンパス二」のカバを送りました!
Vandag het Anne "Kid Olympus 2" se dek gestuur!
Anne sent the cover for "Kid Olympus 2" today!

Today's kanji: 今日 today
きょう, 今 now + 日 day

Monday, July 13, 2009

Nommers en Tyd

(Numbers and Time)

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Torchwood is Terug!

Torchwood, een van my gunsteling TV programme is terug!

Torchwood, one of my favorite TV shows is back!

Vandag se kanji: 英国: Verenigde Koninkryk
えいこく: Brits land
トーチウッドが英国でポピュラーです。
Torchwood is populêr in die Verenigde Koninkryk.
Torchwood is popular in the United Kingdom.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Studeer 勉強

Vandag se kanji: 勉強 studeer
勉, べん, beur
強, きょう, sterk
勉強, べんきょう, beur + sterk = studeer

Today's kanji: 勉強 study
勉, べん, exertion
強, きょう, strong
勉強, べんきょう, exertion + strong = study

アフリカンス語と日本語を勉強します。
Ek studeer Afrikaans en Japans.
I am studying Afrikaans and Japanese.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Fiets 自転車 Bicycle

Vandag se kanji: 自転車 fiets
自: じ, ji, self
転: てん, ten, omwentel
車: しゃ, sha, voertuig
自転車、じてんしゃ、jitensha, self-omwentel voertuig = fiets

Today's kanji: 自転車 bicycle
自: じ, ji, self
転: てん, ten, revolving
車: しゃ, sha, vehicle
自転車、じてんしゃ、jitensha, self-revolving vehicle = bicycle

今日は自転車でオフィスへ行きました。
Vandag het ek per fiets kantoor toe gegaan.
Today, I went to the office by bike.


Monday, July 06, 2009

Suid-Afrika 南阿

Vandag se kanji: 南阿 Suid-Afrika

南阿弗利加、みなみアフリカ、Minami Afurika, Suid-Afrika

Japans kanji en kana is dikwels verkort. Byvoorbeeld, waadopurosessa (woord prosesseerder) is dikwels bekend as waapuro.

Suid-Afrika is ook verkort:
南阿, なんア, Nan'A, Suid-Afrika


Today's kanji: 南阿 South Africa

南阿弗利加、みなみアフリカ、Minami Afurika, South Africa


Japanese kanji and kana is often abbreviated. For instance, waadopurosessa (word processor) is commonly known as waapuro.

South Africa is also abbreviated:
南阿, なんア, Nan'A, South Africa

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Suid-Afrikaanse Boeke

(South African Books)

Verlede week het ek twee Suid-Afrikaanse boeke gekoop, Die Afrikaners: 'n Biografie en 'n Geskiedenis van Suid-Afrika. Ek lees nou "Die Afrikaners." Dis 'n groot boek, maar baie interessant. In ander nuus het ek vir drie ure my slaapkamer skoongemaak. Ek het nou 'n hoofpyn omdat daar was baie stof in die lug.

先週は南阿の本二冊を買いました、アフカーナ: 民族史
南阿の歴史。 今は「アフカーナ」を読みます。大きい本です
けど、迚も面白いです。In other news, 三時間は私の寝室を
取片付けました。今は頭が痛いから、 黄塵です。(The standard katakana for "Afrikaner" is "Afukaana.")

Last week, I bought two South African books, The Afrikaners: Biography of a People (The subtitle of the actual Afrikaans version is truncated to "A Biography") and A History of South Africa. I'm now reading "The Afrikaners." It's a big book, but very interesting. In other news, I cleaned my bedroom for three hours. Now I have a headache because there was so much dust in the air.

My kanji is waaaay rusty. I only recognized a few on my wapro. Here's the entry with kana in place of the bits I didn't get initially:

せんしゅうはみなみあふりかの本二冊を買いました、
アフカーナ: みんぞくし とみなみあふりかのれきし。
今は「アフカーナ」をよみます。大きい本ですけど、
迚も面白いです。In other news, 三じかんは私のしんしつを
とりかたづけました。今はあたまがいたいから、こうじんです。

Saturday, July 04, 2009

Youtube

Happy 4th of July!

Ek het my eerste Afrikaanse Youtube videos gepos. Hoop julle geniet!



Friday, July 03, 2009

Vieruur Voormiddag?!

(4 AM?!)

Ek is baie moeg omdat ek nie gisteraand lekker geslaap het nie. 'n Kamermat en sy vriende het om vieruur vm. my wakker geword! Hulle het van 'n pub of club af tuis toe gekom en het baie geraas gemaak. Vandag drink ek baie koffie...

I am really tired. Last night, I didn't sleep well. A roommate and his friends woke me at 4am! They came home from a bar or club and made a lot of noise. Today I'm drinking a lot of coffee...

Thursday, July 02, 2009

河馬と亀

(Die Seekoei en die Skilpad)

(The Hippo and the Turtle)

アフリカーンが好きですけど日本語も好きです。学問所で日本語を
勉強しました。そして三友達は日本語がはなします。日本語も
勉強します。

Ek hou van Afrikaans, maar ek ook hou van Japans. Ek het Japans in skool gestudeer en drie vriende praat dit. Ek ook weer sal Japans studeer.

I like Afrikaans, but I like Japanese, too. I studied Japanese in school and three of my friends speak it. I'll also study Japanese again, though Afrikaans will remain my primary focus for now.

There's a lot of debate on the ability to learn two languages at once. The general consensus is that the greater the difference in the languages, the better. Afrikaans and Japanese are in two completely separate language families (Indo-European and Altaic), so we'll see how this goes. It'll be a personal experiment. If it doesn't work out too well, I'll drop Japanese for now and continue on with Afrikaans.

Here's some humorous advice from a polyglot on learning languages, including more than one simultaneously:

Learning a language is like having a pet.

Afrikaans sal my seekoei wees & 日本語を私の亀がいます;).

Afrikaans will be my hippo &Japanese will be my turtle ;).

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Doktersafspraak

(Doctor's Appointment)

Vandag het ek per bus vir 'n doktersafspraak hospitaal toe gegaan. Die bus prys het gespring. Verlede maand was dit $1.50, maar dis nou $2.00.

Dié was my eerste tyd met my nuwe dokter. My vorige dokter het privaat kliniek toe gegaan. Hy was goed, maar die nuwe een is ook goed.

Voor die afspraak het ek in die hospitaalkamer my Afrikaanse taalboek gelees. Die dokter het die boek gesien en ons het oor tale gepraat. Per Rosetta Stone het hy Frans geleer.

Die dokter het per vloeibare stikstof 'n rug spikkel verwyder. Dit was nie sleg nie, maar my rug is effens seer.

I went by bus to the hospital for a doctor's appointment today. The bus fare jumped. Last month, it was $1.50, but now it's $2.00.

This was my first time with my new doctor. My previous doctor went to a private clinic. He was good, but the new one is, too.

Before the appointment, I was reading my Afrikaans book in the hospital room. The doctor saw the book and we talked about languages. He learned French with Rosetta Stone.

The doctor removed a back mole with liquid nitrogen. It wasn't so bad, but my back is slightly sore.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Middagete met Jaguars

(Lunch with Jaguars)

My vriend Justin praat vlot Japans. Hy vertaal Japanse video en rekenaar speletjies vir werk. Hy is ook 'n kunstenaar. Ek het sy wonderlike 33x48 cm digitale skildery "Lunch Date" gekoop. Die onderklere en jaguars is baie oulik! Hier is 'n jpeg:



Die prys was een honderd dollars. Daar is vier-en-twintig kopies beskikbaar. E-pos hom na manchester[punt]waxton[by] gmail[punt]com (ek haat spambotte) om een te koop.

My friend Justin speaks fluent Japanese. He translates Japanese video and computer games for work. He is also an artist. I bought his wonderful 13x19 inch digital painting, "Lunch Date." The underwear and jaguars are really cute!

The price was $100. There are 24 copies available. To purchase one, email him at manchester[dot]waxton[at] gmail[dot]com (I hate spambots).

Monday, June 29, 2009

Lang Loop

(Long Walk)

Sondag was LGBT Pride in San Francisco, maar ek het 'n kalm naweek gewil. Dat is hoekom ek het die Castro af verlaat en my vriende se flat toe gegaan.

Om nege-uur nm. op Saterdag nag het Ben, Justin en ek
Oseaan Strand toe geloop. Ons het baie strand braais gesien. Om kwart oor tien nm. het ons Java Strand Kafee toe gewandel. 'n Plaaslike band het musiek gespeel. Almal het koffie gedrink. Swart koffie vir Ben, yskoffie vir Justin en 'n caramel latte vir my. Om kwart voor elf nm. het ons die kafee af verlaat. Ons was honger en het Eritreaanse kos by Nuwe Eritrea gewil, maar ons was laat :(!

Ons het per N-trein 19de en Judah toe gegaan. Daarvandaan het ons vir aandete
Video Kafee toe geloop. Op die restaurant se televisie was 'n Jackie Chan en Jet Li film, "Die Verbode Koninkryk." Die film was nie goed nie, maar die kos was. Ek het nie Ben en Justin se kos onthou nie, maar ek het eiers en roosterbrood geëet.

Om tienuur vm. op Sondag oggend het Ben en ek opgestaan. Ben het
seitan gekook. Hy is nie 'n vegetariër nie, maar hy hou van vegetariese kos. Dié tyd het Ben Koreaanse chili-sous gebruik. Dit was heerlik! Ek het lekker in die Richmond gekuier.

Sunday was LGBT Pride in San Francisco, but I wanted a calm weekend. That's why I left the Castro and went to my friends' apartment.

9pm on Saturday, Ben, Justin, and I walked to Ocean Beach. We saw many beach barbecues. 10:15pm we strolled to Java Beach Café. A local band was playing music. We all drank coffee. Black coffee for Ben, iced coffee for Justin, and a caramel latte for me. 10:45pm we left the café. We were hungry and wanted Eritrean food at New Eritrea, but it was late :(!

We took the N-train to 19th & Judah. From there we walked to Video Café for dinner. On the restaurant's TV was a Jackie Chan and Jet Li film, "The Forbidden Kingdom." It wasn't good, but the food was. I don't remember Ben's and Justin's food, but I ate eggs and toast.

10am on Sunday morning, Ben and I woke up. Ben cooked seitan. He isn't a vegetarian, but he likes vegetarian food. This time he used Korean hot sauce. It was delicious! I enjoyed my time the Richmond (lit. "I visited happily in the Richmond).

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Die Luidrugtigste Vriend

(The Loudest Friend)

Gisteraand het ek per huurmotor vriende se flat toe in die Richmond buurt van San Francisco gegaan. My vriende se name is Bakker, Ben en Justin. Bakker nie was daar nie, maar my ander vriend Connor was. Bakker is in Iowa.

Ben en ek het winkel toe geloop. Ons het vleispizza vir hulle en groentepizza vir my gekoop. Almal hou van rooipeper en ons het dit op die pizzas geplaas. Connor het die meeste teen ongeluk. He left the top off the dispenser!

Connor het Half-Lewe Twee gespeel en almal het na die rekenaar speletjie gekyk. Ons het by twee-uur vm. geslaap.

Vandag om halfelf vm. het Connor opgestaan. Ben en ek om eenuur nm. opgestaan. Connor het nie ontbyt geëet nie, maar Ben het roosterbrood en yogurt geëet en ek het roosterbrood en botter
geëet. Ben en ek ook het koffie gedrink. Ben se koffie was swart, maar ek het suiker in myne geplaas.

Justin het om tien voor drie nm. opgestaan. Connor en Half-Lewe Twee het hom wakker gemaak. Connor is die luidrugtigste vriend!


Last night, I took a taxi to my friends' apartment in the Richmond district of San Francisco. My friends' names are Baker, Ben, and Justin. Baker wasn't there, but my other friend Connor was. Baker is in Iowa.

Ben and I walked to the store. We bought meat pizza for them and vegetable pizza for me, We all love red pepper and put it on the pizzas. Connor put the most by accident. He left the top off the dispenser!

Connor played Half-Life 2 and everyone watched the game. We went to sleep at 2am.

Today, Connor wok up at 10:30am. Ben and I woke up at 1pm. Connor didn't eat breakfast, but Ben ate toast and yogurt and I ate toast and butter. Ben and I also drank coffee. Ben's coffee was black, but I put sugar in mine.

Justin woke up at 2:50pm. Connor and Half-Life 2 woke him up. Connor is the loudest friend!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Groter Sterker Vinniger

Ek het "Groter, Sterker, Vinniger" vandag op Netflix gekyk. Die dokumentêr was omtrent steroids in Amerikaanse sport.

I watched "Bigger, Stronger, Faster" today on Netflix. The documentary was about steroids in American sports.

Unlike Super Size Me, where there was really only one side, BSF did a good job of grilling people on both sides of the issue. As the documentary went on, it became less about steroids and more about American culture as a whole.

"In a culture where second place is the first loser, the real heroes are the ones who win at all cost."

Somewhat chilling words that sum up the documentary. I highly recommend it!

Check out the trailer:

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Kamermaats

(Roommates)

I'll have to keep my Afrikaans entries pretty small, at least at first. Even with an Afrikaans online dictionary, I don't have necessary foundation of grammar to say a lot. I thought about interspersing English phrases whenever I couldn't get an idea across, but decided against that for now. Here's today's quick Afrikaans entry.

Dit is halfses nm. Ek het na twee Afrikaans potgooi vandag in my slaapkamer geluister, "Afrikaans in Sydney" en "Cybersakkie." My flat het vier slaapkamers en een badkamer. Ek het twee kamermaats. Ons makeer een meer. Die plek is goed en is in die Castro buurt van San Francisco.

It is half before 6pm. I listened to two Afrikaans podcasts today in my bedroom, "Afrikaans in Sydney" and "Cybersakkie." My apartment has three bedrooms and one bathroom. I have two roommates. We need one more. The place is good and is in the Castro neighborhood of San Francisco.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Wetenskap Fiksie Boeke

(Science Fiction Books)

Goeiemôre. Dit is tien voor elf vm. Ek het halfnege vm. opgestaan. Ek het kwart voor tien per my rooi fiets kantoor toe gegaan. Ek is moeg. Die heuwels van San Francisco is baie groot!

Ek het verlede maand drie baie goed wetenskap fiksie boeke gekoop. Ek lees "A Rage for Revenge." Die outeur is David Gerrold. Die hoof karakter is 'n biseksueel soldaat en bioloog. Die boek is die derde in die reeks, "War Against the Chtorr." Die eerste boek is "A Matter for Men" en die tweede boek is "A Day for Damnation." Die outeur ook was 'n Star Trek skrywer. Hy het "The Trouble with Tribbles" geskryf :).

Good morning. It's 10 before 11am. I got up at half to 9am. I went to the office at quarter to ten on my red bike. I'm tired. The hills of San Francisco are really big!

Last month I bought three really good science fiction books. I'm reading "A Rage for Revenge." The author is David Gerrold. The main character is a bisexual soldier and biologist. The book is the third in the series, "War Against the Chtorr." The first book is "A Matter for Men" and the second book is "A Day for Damnation." The author also was a Star Trek writer. He wrote "The Trouble with Tribbles" :).

Monday, June 22, 2009

Ek Leer Afrikaans

I'm currently learning Afrikaans, the creole of Dutch spoken in South Africa and Namibia (as well as other parts of southern Africa). I'm using two self-study course sets, Learn Afrikaans and Teach Yourself Afrikaans. The former jumps right into the language with colloquial phrases for tourists, while the latter concentrates on a firm foundation of grammar and vocabulary.

The bulk of my time is spent with TYA, but the vast majority of the dialogue is spoken as slow as molasses. I appreciate the speed for ease of comprehension, but I really think every audio clip should have two versions. One for introduction to the phrase and a second at normal speed so listeners can get acclimated to the pace of real speech. LA is all at normal speed, so it's a great supplement.

Every day, I'll leave a little bit about my day in Afrikaans for practice. Afrikaans sections will appear in green as a nod to the groen of the South African Rugby team, the Springboks. Here goes:

Goeiemôre! Dit is elf oor elf voor middag. Ek leer Afrikaans. Ek luister na die laserskyf, Learn Afrikaans. Elke dag lees ek die boek, Teach Yourself Afrikaans. Die prys vir die laserskyf en boek was vier-en-dertig dollars.

Elke oggend gaan ek per fiets kantoor toe. My fiets is rooi. My fiets se prys was een honderd tagtig dollars. Lekker prys!

Ek eet nie vleis nie. Gister het ek eiers en aartappels vir ontbyt geëet. Ook ek eet nie vis nie. Gisteraand het ek groente sushi geëet.


Good morning! It is 11:11am. I am learning Afrikaans. I listen to the CD, Learn Afrikaans. Every day, I read the book, Teach Yourself Afrikaans. The price for the CD and book was 34 dollars.

Every morning I go to the office by bike. My bike is red. My bike's price was $180. Great price!


I don't eat meat. Yesterday, I ate eggs and potatoes for breakfast. I also don't eat fish. Last night, I ate vegetable sushi.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Synergy Magazine

Pride High will be featured in the Australian cinema & lit quarterly, Synergy Magazine. Here's the online version of the review which will appear later in print:

Synergy Review

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Fire Relief for Webcomics Creator

Karen Ellis, a vital member of the webcomics community and member of Girl-Wonder.org, lost her apartment and most of her belongings to a fire this past Sunday. The indie comics community is doing its best to help her out. If you'd like to join in the effort, please consider making a donation, found here:

Planet Karen

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Tempeh Coconut Curry

I was in the mood for some Southeast Asian flavors, so I went with an Indonesian-influenced Thai Curry. Just follow the instructions on the back of any Thai Kitchen Curry Paste, and you've got a pretty good meal on the way :)!

Tempeh on the chopping block.



Letting it fry for a bit.



Tempeh Coconut Curry

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Dimer Dalna

A hallmark of Bengali cuisine is the use of the following spices: cumin, fennel, fenugreek, mustard, and nigella seeds. Collectively known as panch phoran, or "five spices" in Bengali, the flavors meld well with potatoes and egg.



Aloo Dimer Dalna

Ingredients
2-3 Tbsp of ghee
2 Tbsp panch phoran
1 bay leaf
1 small cinnamon stick
1 tsp hing
1 medium onion, chopped
2 Tbsp ginger garlic paste
2 medium tomatoes, chopped
3 large potatoes, cubed
1/2 cup water
2 tsp turmeric
salt & cayenne pepper to taste
6 hard-boiled eggs, with several slits cut into each
1 cup green peas

Lightly fry the panch phoran, bay leaf, hing, and cinnamon stick in the ghee. As soon as you hear a mustard seed pop, add the chopped onions. Stir well over medium low heat until the onions are just turning translucent. Add the ginger-garlic paste and stir VERY well. The paste will stick to the bottom the pan. A bit of that is okay, but stir, stir, stir! After 15-20 seconds of this, add the potatoes and keep stirring vigorously, so that potatoes are coated completely by the other ingredients.



Add the tomatoes. The liquid from the tomatoes should remove most of the ginger-garlic paste that adhered to the bottom of the pan. Once the tomatoes have pretty much cooked down, add the water, turmeric, cayenne, and salt, stir well, cover and simmer for 15 minutes (check after 10 minutes).



Finally, add the eggs and peas and simmer for 10 more minutes. Remove from heat, and let sit for a few minutes (the gravy will thicken up), then enjoy!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Mixed Veggie Dal

I was in the mood for some veggie-packed dal! I love the natural food store right around the corner!


I usually cook dal Jain-style, with no garlic or onion, but I had both sitting in the pantry and going to waste.


Here's the ghee-fried tarka being added to the dal. This is the best smelling part of the cooking process!


The finished dal, served with basmati and full-fat, cream top yogurt. Mmmm!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Fanboys Podcast

Following up on the review of last week, I was invited onto Chance's Fanboy podcast! In addition to the usual topics, we also discussed how I inadvertently outed myself the first week of high school junior year, and how "They Might Be Giants" is one of my favorite bands. Check it out here!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Fanboys of the Universe


Here's a great review of Pride High #7 from Chance of Fanboys of the Universe!

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Still No Connection

So I'm still without an internet connection at home. Surprisingly though, it hasn't been so bad. Being able to have an intentional Evening Unplugged every now and then has definitely made the unintentional periods less of a hassle.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Nethack: Talk Nerdy to Me

After a great holiday weekend with Jefferson, I needed to get back to work on Pride High. I had miscellaneous updates for the homepage, as well as artwork to download/upload. However, once I got home, I discovered that my internet connection was down. My roommate had lost his wallet the previous day and had to cancel all of his cards, including the one our connection was billed to.

After doing all I could do on the comic without the internet, I decided to take a break and play Nethack, an ASCII dungeon crawl game I first heard about almost a decade ago. This game is one of the hardest out there. If your character perishes, it’s game over. Scores of fans have played for years without ever beating it. What follows will be gobbledygook for non-fans, but for any fellow Nethackers out there, here’s a copy of my very own YAFAP (Yet Another First Ascension Post):

I've played Nethack off and on for nearly a decade. I've rotated between it, SLASH'EM, ADOM, and Angband. Originally, ADOM was my favorite, but Nethack's quirky humor, pet system, and mounted combat won me over. I've pretty much always played as a human knight. I was hooked after the first time I tried jousting. However, stupid mistake after stupid mistake kept me from ever getting far at all. The most promising game I had before this one ended at the Castle… from overeating. I gorged on a black dragon corpse for disintegration resistance while satiated. Before this, I always assumed the warning message for overeating would appear. Oops.

This time around, I had a good feeling about things. Using a wish from the magic lamp in Minetown, I got myself a tame ki-rin who I named Windhoof. Ki-rin are AMAZING mounts! Besides being able to fly, they're fast, can wear an amulet of reflection, AND self-heal.

After finding two spare lances in the Castle, I began using my original lance in earnest. I enchanted it to +6 (can’t engrave/re-enchant for +7) and rustproofed it.

Ixoth, the quest boss was cake. With my lance, I was able to just joust him to death. I gave Grayswandir to Sunset, my pet archon (from the Castle wand of wishing), and descended into Gehennom. Named demons and Rodney (who I battled for the first time ever) all fell to the knight joust/pound technique. I made it to the vibrating square, grabbed the Amulet from the high priest of Moloch, and with heart racing, began to make my way back through the dungeon.

With 6 scrolls of uncursed gold detection, archon sidekick, and trusty flying mount, I made my way through the Planes of Earth and Air easily. And then disaster struck. When I got to the Plane of Fire, I realized I had left my bag of holding, with my holy water, scrolls, and spare wands on the Plane of Air!!! I was tempted to reroll, but then took a deep breath and continued. I made my way to the upper righthand corner of the Elemental Plane of Fire and began to fly over every single square of the map to find the portal. Without knowing where the portal was, I knew I would be saying goodbye to my archon soon. About a third of the way through the map, I finally hit the magic portal.

Water was the most frustrating of the Elemental Planes. I avoided fighting as much as possible, and searched every bubble as thoroughly as I could. Unlike the Plane of Fire, I had no idea if I was missing any squares as I went along. Thankfully, I got lucky and tripped the magic portal in a bubble to the far right of the map.

The Astral Plane was tense. With towel telepathy I could see Pestilence guarding the left altar, Famine in front of the center, and Death on the right. I went for Famine first. Luckily he never got his hands on me due to jousting and a fully lit Candelabrum to pound at a distance. The altar was wrong, so I went for Death next. He was a little scarier, as he hit me a few times. Still, I was able to dispatch him without too much trouble and make my way to the altar. Wrong again!

I headed for Pestilence, only to have Famine and Death come back for more as a team. I backed up into the hallway, and fought them one on one. Famine first, then Death. I finally made my way to Pestilence. At this point I was REALLY nervous, thinking that my lance could break at any moment, despite my insanely high luck. My Excalibur and Sunsword had been lost with my bag of holding, so my only backup weapon was a longsword dropped by a trash mob. Well, my lance was rendered obsolete afterall, though it didn't break. Pestilence made me ill, and with no other way to mitigate the disease (potions all lost with bag), I had to pray. While praying, Pestilence killed my mount, Windhoof! I checked my inventory to see if I had my wand of turn undead, but no such luck. Another thing lost with the bag of holding. Luckily, I did have a wand of death on me, and blasted Pestilence away.

Switching to my long sword, I began to slowly make my way to the last altar, but enemies were being summoned all around me. Pestilence revived close by, but luckily, his way to me was blocked by hordes of insects. Despite my high AC, my health was starting to trickle down. I began to despair, until I checked back through my inventory. I had a wand of teleportation with 7 charges left! With renewed hope, I began to teleport enemies out of the way. With the path now open, I raced up to the altar, sacrificed the Amulet of Yendor, and ascended for the first time!

Saturday, January 03, 2009

First Review of 2009!

François Peneaud of The Gay Comics List just posted a review of Pride High #6 & 7!