“No, no, information really does want to be free.

“Just like shoes want to be rich, fences want to be happy, clouds want to be famous, and pencils just want to be loved uncritically.”

— Bill Snyder

Recent reads


Foreigner, C.J. Cherryh

I got interested in the characters and situation, then it skipped forward a hundred years. I got interested in the new characters and situations, then it skipped forward two hundred years. At this point, I decided not to get too invested in the third protagonist, and of course that was the one who lasted the rest of the book. Unfortunately, his story was less interesting than the other two, and so was he. When it petered out, I took a look at reviews of the second one, and decided that I didn’t care enough about a thinly-disguised story of high-tech white colonialism backfiring because they just can’t understand the native black culture.

Od Magic, Harrowing The Dragon, Alphabet of Thorn, The Book of Atrix Wolfe, Patricia A. McKillip

Always reliably entertaining, McKillip’s backlist is getting more reasonably priced on Amazon. None of these really jumped out at me as exceptional, but they’re all good. I have a few more on my ‘overpriced’ Kindle list, and if they ever drop below $10, I’ll buy them.

Shadows & Reflections: A Roger Zelazny Tribute Anthology

A bunch of good authors either writing their own stories in one of Zelazny’s worlds, or earnestly attempting to emulate his prose style in their own worlds. Honestly, it made me wish they’d just written their own worlds in their own styles. Especially Brust.

A Blink of the Screen: Collected Shorter Fiction, Terry Pratchett

An oddball mix of material from across his career. For some of the early stuff, the commentary is better than the story.

Times Three, Robert Silverberg

Three time-travel novels. Not his best, but well worth the cover price.

A Dirty Job, Christopher Moore

The last truly fresh Moore novel I read was Bloodsucking Fiends. Several years ago, I gave up on this one in the first chapter. This time I was more in the mood for it, but not enough that I’d pay $11+ for the sequel. Maybe $7 on a good day.

Northwest Smith, C.L. Moore

Classic SF short stories that I’d only ever seen a few of. Good stuff, but it made me wish she’d written at least one story where Smith didn’t run into some sort of Lovecraftian horror, and just dealt with the SFnal side of his universe.

The Planetary Adventures of Eric John Stark, Leigh Brackett

More classic shorts from another of the legendary women of SF that the current gatekeepers like to pretend never existed. Maybe because she wrote about strong men and feminine women…

Norstrilia, Cordwainer Smith

I’d only ever read The Ballad of Lost C’Mell, not realizing that she’s a major player in this novel. Good stuff, of the sort you just can’t get outside of indie any more.

I’m still waiting on the final Pennyverse novel, currently in small-press limbo. Meanwhile, I’ve got Poul Anderson’s The Corridors of Time and C.L. Moore’s Jirel of Joiry downloaded and ready to go. In the queue to buy are Gordon R. Dickson’s Dorsai! and Theodore Sturgeon’s Selected Stories.

Change of plans!

New Ethshar novel released three weeks ago.

A CryptoSucker born every minute…


Is it just me, or shouldn’t it be obvious to anyone capable of rubbing two brain cells together that “Initial Coin Offerings” are a total scam?

Seriously, in this latest one, the con artists actually responded to a request from a potential investor with the following:

“To benefit from our service you have to invest in our LoopX Coin. Already proofen by other successful coins guaranties this the stability of our system.”

Yeah, that just makes me want to invest my savings!

So, as the fleeced gather together to attempt a class-action lawsuit, I’d like to remind them that judges rarely get involved when Pokemon trades go bad.

Cheesecake Champloo 15


Yeah, I got nothin’. Honestly, the most important thing I’m doing this week is mailing off a present for my kindergarten teacher’s 70th birthday.

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Cheesecake Champloo 14


“That’s no moon, it’s a cheesecake.”

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Black Panther is…


  • “the first blockbuster-format release featuring a black hero front and center”, according to the newborns at Salon who’ve never seen a movie or learned to google.

  • so good that only racists could possibly dislike it, according to some HuffPo clown upset about the existence of a negative review on Rotten Tomatoes.

  • probably better than the Ghostbusters remake, despite the virtue signalling of idiots like the ones above.

  • full of really loud hip-hop and rapping, according to the trailers, which seems a bit odd for an incredibly high-tech African country with a long history of secrecy and isolation and no connection to American urban black culture.

  • not on my list to see in theaters, because most cinema audio systems are set to REALLYREALLYLOUD, and that’s not the sort of music I enjoy hearing at high volume for two hours.

  • hitting all my Marvel Fatigue buttons. It took me two months to finish watching Age of Ultron, I still haven’t bothered with Civil War, I skipped the Spiderman reboot, I blew off Ragnarok until I can rent it on Amazon, and I’m unlikely to see Infinity War in theaters. Ant-Man And The Wasp, maybe, but there’s a suspicious lack of wombats in the trailer.

  • not as cool as Deadpool 2.

Pingky: Momo


The previously-linked adorable I-8 cosplayer is Pingky aka Momo aka Shimon.

Cheesecake Champloo 13


When it comes to cheesecake, 13 is not unlucky. I’d have put this up sooner, but I really like the picture of I-8 that I opened the last set with.

Speaking of which, here’s a bit of SFW I-8 cosplay.

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Work-life balance enforced by LEED


Evenings and weekends considered harmful! Just got this notification from work:

I wanted to send out a notice in case you are not aware—the AC in our office only runs Mon. to Fri., from 6am – 7pm. Our property manager does not automatically run it on the weekends, to conserve energy and costs. If you will be working on the weekend and would like the AC on, I would need at least 48 hours’ notice to give to our property management office. Please note that there is a fee for this so if you will only be in for a short time, I would recommend we not turn on the AC.

(this does not, of course, apply to our computer room air conditioning, or we’d have noticed really quickly…)

“Need a clue, take a clue,
 got a clue, leave a clue”