Day 326: International Games Day @ Your Library

King of Tokyo.

King of Tokyo.

Yesterday was International Games Day @ Your Library, celebrated at libraries everywhere. Our local library’s event was from 2-4pm and my wife and I arrived about 15 minutes late, only to find things being packed up. Our host said nobody had shown up, so she was happy to get the games back out on the table to game with us.

The three of us started with King of Tokyo, which was an absolute blast. My wife and I had never played before, but it only took a few turns before we got the hang of it. A few minutes later, a lady and her 14-year-old son arrived and we added them to the mix. We enjoyed a lot of laughs as we each took turns attacking each other.

We ended the event with a few quick games of  Wits and Wagers (Party edition) and Timeline: Inventions. My only complaint about the event? We didn’t have enough time to play all of the other great games available.

Day 170: The Beard Is Coming

Game of Thrones meme

Game of Thrones meme

I stopped by the library to find a copy of the Searching for Sugar Man soundtrack. I took it to the check-out counter, where I hadn’t seen one of the clerks in quite some time. She commented on my beard and asked the same question my wife had asked me recently: “Why grow it now? Won’t it be hot?”

I said something about protecting my face against the elements, but decided to come clean and got a good laugh from the entire front-counter staff: “Actually, we’ve been binge-watching Game of Thrones lately.”


Day 132: Score

Used graphic novel and DVD

Used graphic novel and DVD

I love my local library, especially the adjacent Friends of the Library bookstore, which is where I’ve scored a lot of fantastic used (and sometimes new) books, DVDs, and other goodies. The items are typically in great shape and sell for a fraction of their retail price.

Today after my last appointment I stopped by the bookstore and couldn’t believe my luck. I found a near-new copy of Saga of the Swamp Thing, by one of my favorite writers, Alan Moore. And right across the aisle I stumbled upon the movie Prison On Fire, starring one of my favorite actors, Chow Yun-Fat. I’m embarrassed to admit that I haven’t read or seen either of these classics, but thanks to the bookstore and a measly seven bucks, I’ll be enjoying them soon.

Day 27: Post-Apocalyptic Reading

Station Eleven e-book cover

Station Eleven e-book cover

While I was learning the ropes of the board game Pandemic this weekend, I received a notice from the L.A. County Public Library. Apparently, I had placed a hold on the e-book* Station Eleven and it was now available. I didn’t remember doing this, but since I’d only read one book this year I decided to download it.

In keeping with my recent binge-watching of The Walking Dead and my fascination with the Pandemic game, Emily St. John Mandel’s Station Eleven fit right in with my entertainment du jour. It’s a brilliant book that I can’t put down. In fact, it’s so good, that once I finished 75 percent of it, I decided to slow down my reading pace in order to savor its final pages.

Station Eleven is a beautifully written book about life after a pandemic wipes out 99 percent of the world’s population. Mandel’s handling of each character is masterful and I’m looking forward to reading her previous work. For now, I’ll enjoy her post-apocalyptic novel between games trying to prevent the apocalypse.

*Note: One of my favorite things about the L.A. County Public Library system is its selection of online materials. Through the Downloads section of their website, patrons can borrow e-books, audiobooks, and music free of charge. All you need is a library card (any resident of California can get one) and a compatible device. I no longer own a Kindle, but the Kindle app allows me to borrow books on my phone or tablet.

Day 11: Pictures for Soul Sunday


I’m feeling the effects of watching the NFL playoffs: my brain is mush and my body is antsy. I just can’t do these marathon sessions in front of the TV anymore. Unless it’s watching shows about zombies, of course.

So, today’s post will simply be three photos that make me feel good. I took each one during this past year using the camera on my Nexus 5 (thanks to HDR+ and Auto Awesome for making my photos look halfway decent).

Three pictures to rejuvenate myself; it’s good for my soul on this Sunday.

1. Latte art. Klatch Coffee, Rancho Cucamonga, CA.


2. Atrium in the Georgina Cole Library, Carlsbad, CA.


3. View from Stearns Wharf, Santa Barbara, CA.