Digital Chum - Virtual fish guts and other nonsense

March, 2007:

The Potato Joke

I saw this on Cindy’s blog and thought it was worth posting. Ha!

An old man lived alone in the country. He wanted to dig his potato garden but it was very hard work as the ground was hard. His only son Fred, who used to help him, was in prison. The old man wrote a letter to his son and described his predicament.

Dear Fred,
I am feeling pretty bad because it looks like I won’t be able to plant my potato garden this year. I’m just getting too old to be digging up a garden plot. If you were here, all my troubles would be over I know you would dig the plot for me.

A few days later he received a letter from his son.

Dear Dad,
For heaven’s sake, don’t dig up that garden! That’s where I buried the BODIES!

At 4am the next morning, FBI agents and local police arrived and dug up the entire area without finding any bodies. They apologized to the old man and left. That same day the old man received another letter from his son.

Dear Dad,
Go ahead and plant the potatoes now. That’s the best I could do under the circumstances.

What’s up with Condi?

Condoleezza Rice

So… it might just be my warped impression, but Condoleezza Rice always seems to sound like she’s about to burst into tears whenever she’s speaking. It’s like her voice is right on the edge of cracking and she’s trying her damndest to maintain her composure… but she’s only one dirty look away from a complete tearful breakdown.

She also seems to look pissed off in most pictures I see of her. I wonder if that’s related.

The Lord of the Rings Online

Pingwulf riding past WeathertopWell, a few weeks ago, my friend Mike got me a closed beta key to play The Lord of the Rings Online. I started playing it and was really enjoying it, but was still waffling over whether to pre-order the game (thus gaining nice benefits if I decided to play it when it went live) or to just stop playing when beta ended. Mike kept trying to coerce me into getting it, to no avail, so he finally forced me to commit to playing the game by pre-ordering it for me as a birthday present. FFS!

So now I’m committed to playing it, which isn’t a disappointment because it really is fun and well-done. Two months before launch, it’s more polished and complete than most competing MMORPG’s are after six months from their release dates. The closed beta ends this Monday and the open beta starts for pre-order customers on March 30th. For non pre-order customers, open beta starts a week later. Pre-order customers also get a couple bonus items when the game goes live and they get to keep their characters (up to level 15) from beta, which is really nice for beta players. It means we won’t have to start over AGAIN to create characters.

So… I’m happily playing Lord of the Rings Online now each evening for a bit… about an hour or so a day, give or take. Mike even convinced me (the bastard!) to join a guild of older gamers who are very casual (mostly) about gameplay and have families that are a higher priority… which fits nicely in with my playstyle. Once a game becomes a chore, I’m done, and nothing makes it more of a chore than feeling like you have to play a certain amount, a certain way, or for a certain purpose.

I periodically take some screenshots from the game and post them on my gallery site ( in the Lord of the Rings Online gallery. Mike plays a character named “Arepfoot” (and other characters whose names always start with “Arep”) and I play a character named “Pingwulf” (and other characters whose names always start with “Ping”).