Phaedrus' Street Crew
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About Gormongous

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    Ghost Bird

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  1. Life

    Not terribly much, the general fucked-ness of the world aside! I got furloughed for the first year of the pandemic, more or less, then got rehired, but I'm getting bored at a job that's getting busier without getting more interesting, so that may change someday soon. I also caught Covid despite a booster right before visiting home for Christmas, so that sucked, but otherwise things have been good. My relationship with my current girlfriend is stronger than ever, my podcast is still alive somehow, and Elden Ring has managed to get me back into games.
  2. Movie/TV recommendations

    I can say, at least, that I really appreciate Mackenzie Davis after her performance in Station Eleven and it's making me wonder if I should pick Halt & Catch Fire up again for a rewatch with my girlfriend...
  3. Life

    Hey Zeus! Glad to know that you've been doing well after what sounds like an incredibly rough patch. I'm embarrassed to be checking in... uh, two months late? But yeah, I stop by sometimes.
  4. Three Moves Ahead 505: Crusader Kings 3

    The "inbred" trait is pretty harsh, but there are perks in the legacy trees quite early on to minimize the harms of inbreeding, so... yes and no?
  5. It's very clear that Troy is on a heavily modified version of Rome 2's engine and the best innovations post-Rome 2 have been backported in with mixed success. Certainly, the political and diplomatic systems can't remotely match Three Kingdoms for their lack of extraneous clicks and other bullshit. I'm playing the Furious Wilds DLC for the latter right now and it's incredible, after a win as Hector in Troy, how much I keep expecting agent spam, hiking across the map to deal with a sudden declaration of war, and tedious sieges when Three Kingdoms largely dispensed with that (and hopefully someone's taking notes there).
  6. Movie Marathons

    I think that Adaptation is the main counterpoint to that observation, because Donald is so kind and patient and forgiving... but, of course, he's playing the foil to the anxious and caustic Charlie, so...
  7. Three Moves Ahead Episode 495: Sports

    I only wish I had the time to register an account on a random forum in order to clutch my pearls dramatically about how underpaid nurses are and how it's the fault of the jocks who bullied me in high school. Why is anyone mad about professional athletes and other entertainers being, on the far end of the bell curve, mildly overpaid? The most cursory Google search reveals that it'd be much more logical and effective to blame health system and health plan CEOs for giving themselves multi-million dollar bonuses when it comes to nurses being underpaid, but I guess that that would require a critique of our society and not just blaming overpaid athletes as individual signs of our decadence. Also, how about this: professional athletes absolutely destroy their bodies (and, in some cases, their brains) over what is usually a decade-long career and they deserve whatever money people are willing to give them without being made into a bogeyman for the vast societal inequalities that have allowed billionaires to add $262 billion to their already ineffable fortunes during a once-in-a-century pandemic? Like, yeah, some people are overpaid for the labor they do, but your first target is professional athletes, whose work you can see manifest on their very bodies? Really?
  8. Movie/TV recommendations

    I've definitely noticed that trend in Japanese media, too. I wonder if it's the cultural baggage of novels (and fiction in general) being a women-dominated endeavor in Japan throughout the pre-modern period. Men wrote poems and nonfiction, women wrote "silly stories," and that's how The Tale of Genji came to be considered as perhaps the world's first novel.
  9. Frozen 2

    To be fair, I just haven't seen Frozen 2. I liked the first one well enough, but even those who loved it seemed to be mixed about the followup. Jenny Nicholson got a good video out of it, at least:
  10. Yeah, I enjoyed much of the DLC for Crusader Kings 2, but I find it incredibly telling that they twice announced that they were done making DLC for the game... only to renege on that statement. I'm not nearly naive enough to think that they got sudden ideas for another two years' worth of DLC twice, and design choices driven by financial necessity always make me leery but especially when it comes to video games.
  11. It's what I expected when Valve acquired the studio, but this is definitely a case where I'd rather have been wrong than right.
  12. Movie/TV recommendations

    I saw The Beach Bum, Harmony Korine's latest film, and it was... fine? Despite Korine's stated motive of making a movie about a lucky dude living a happy and blessed life, it's really not too different from his previous works that figure near-sociopathic burnouts leaving destruction in their wake. Want to see Matthew McConaughey as a stoned pervert without two brain cells to rub together, but seen every other movie where he plays that role? I mean, sure, maybe try out The Beach Bum, although I personally got more out of a couple of the cameos myself (Martin Lawrence and Zac Efron, especially).
  13. Three Moves Ahead Episode 480: 1999

    Nah, I played the crap out of X-Wing vs. TIE Fighter and it was especially good about differentiating light and heavy craft. X-Wing Alliance was the inflection point.
  14. Movie/TV recommendations

    My issue with the director's cut is largely that the addition of scenes on LV-426 before the outbreak ruin the dramatic tension of the first act, but the rest of the changes are golden, I agree.
  15. Life

    I successfully defended my dissertation yesterday. It's (almost) the end of a grueling three-month process where I was promised another year's extension on the program deadline, denied that extension by the university administration, and then given the chance to defend an abridged version of my dissertation, after much bargaining and pleading with my department. I have a lot of feelings: pride that I was able to write almost 25,000 words in the space of a month while also working full time in order to finish a draft for submission, disappointment that my dissertation couldn't be the full work that I'd envisioned, relief that I got it all done anyway, humiliation that I was forced to spend weeks begging for professors and bureaucrats to suspend arbitrary and often informal rules that they'd always tell me they didn't personally agree with, and anxiety that... well, that feels a lot like low-grade PTSD, like I'm on the plane home but I'll always be ass-deep in that jungle muck. I've been incredibly lucky to have a lot of friends, not a few of them from this community, who've supported me in this decade-long process, and I owe each and every one of them my thanks. Whether or not I use my doctorate to teach, as I had planned, I'm incredibly happy to have achieved a lifelong goal of mine, against such odds.