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Click to see a game played. Interesting marketing.






Date Square:


Click to expand.

Orthogonal moves as far as you want. Move to later dates, remove the squares from where you came. Last player to move wins.

That was a whole lot of work. The pieces are thumbtacks with the metal snipped and filed off.

date square Canadian snacks




Not many orthognal twelves with those randomly-placed dice.

Q: Is it just a coincidence that the dice fit in the holes perfectly?

A: Yes. These are dollar store dice, which I think are a little smaller.

The construction is 90% done. You can see the problems that were being solved here. The frame is fine (if we conveniently ignore the corner that doesn't want to be glued). But now that the frame is done .. why not put a floor under it? A reason had been that the popsicle sticks will have gaps between them. Something to look into. It's nice to be able to move the board with pieces from one place to another.



I've been curious about this for some time. This was originally German game Malefiz (1960).

To see a quick game played, go here. For something more .. authentic, you can see this brief video.

Mechanically this is probably not good. I don't always say that about roll and moves. It looks good and maybe it has a role.



A game from the Gambia. One way that yoté is different is the 6 x 5 layout.

More coming from this fellow. He has an old-fashioned perspective and a fondness for simplicity and abstraction.


Because I Can


Oak Games tournament is in the library here. Now we can explore tangents, themes.





I could think of a neat set of games for a scaled-down Oak Games tournament with an African theme. African and OG games, slight majority OG, some overlap, some neither. A given team would play four mancalas, and there would be five games with a checkers look: choko, yoté x 2, dara, seega. Two fanoronas. Jenga. Roll and move Hyena is unfortunately a no, even as a demonstration game. A tailored set of OG games, plus a surprise or two, trivia. It's like getting the right ingredients for a recipe. That Reiner Knizia game would be part of the prize package.


This one-minute video shows a fanorona game being played. Nice implementation.


Let's consider a scaled-down Oak Games tournament with a European theme. A lot of games and countries. Maybe split into two events. The whole team playing five GIPF games at once! Malefiz, likely not for points.


Das ist cool.


Billiards/pool/snooker? I don't know.

U.S.A.. Poker, for a scary amount of points. Tak, Shobu, Boop, the old Camelot. Can't Stop. Sabotage can make its case. Something physical. Cornhole seems most thematic, but pool is better.

Language, Culture and Geography


MIT Study Reveals Why Africa Is Still Poor

An explanation of why Africa is the way it is, starting with geography.

Then again, Soma's Academy has How Economics Explained Gets African History Wrong, which I encourage you to watch.


The Calgary Stampede


Cornwall accent

Not what I would describe as delicate.

The Cornish accent is known for sounding like pirates. Cornwall is a western section of West Country. West Country includes Cornwall, Devon, Dorset, Somerset and Bristol, and arguably more. Penzance and Land's End in Cornwall ring a bell with me.

NEW Cornish was a Celtic language wikipedia. Breton is a Celtic language in Brittany, France.

There are some famous characters in popular culture with West Country accents, including Hagrid from Harry Potter and Samwise Gamgee from Lord of the Rings. There's also that scene in Hot Fuzz.


Luke Hector "The Broken Meeple" is in West Country, not sure where. Cheerful fellow. Ark Novar?




So you're making a film about the Trump years, roughly the four years he was president in the United States. But since it's such a big topic you will have to focus on one person, although that rule will be bent/broken. Which person will you focus on?

The Secret Service. Weird name if you think about it; it doesn't explain what they do.

Do you remember back in 2017 when Kathy Griffin had a video where she showed a severed head of Donald Trump? She was tossed out of employment. At the time I preferred that she not be "cancelled", but there are definitely things we could discuss.


I had encountered this when I was unsuccessfully looking for (inquiring?) Pierre Trudeau pronouncing "inquiry" one way and Justin Trudeau pronouncing it another way. I think it's more a matter of syllable emphasis than vowels.

Now, as a result of recent developments, there is suddenly a lot of talk about tossing out Prime Minister Justin Trudeau rather than keeping him for the next election.

This is a time capsule of a political debate in Canada in 1968. This shows the nature of discourse at the time. Note the number of people. Some interesting things to debate.

This was the time of Trudeaumania. It's not a coincidence that it sounds like Beatlemania. That always was a headscratcher for me.

One of the participants is Tommy Douglas. He was the Premier of Saskatchewan, and belonged to left-wing parties. His signature achievement was being a mover for Medicare. As you can see, he ran for Prime Minister of Canada. His daughter was actress Shirley Douglas. She played Nellie McClung, among other things. Shirley Douglas married actor Donald Sutherland. One of their children is Kiefer Sutherland.

Barbara Frum inducted into CBC News Hall of Fame

Barbara Frum was a well-known radio and television host for Canadians of a certain age.




How The CIA Is Helping Ukraine Defeat Russia

A 37-minute video, full of juicy details. That Brennan was active.

Intelligence isn't necessarilly about war, finding targets to zap.




Belarusian special forces




Food and Drink