Saturday, October 29, 2011

Big News for Indeah and DM!

Sorry there haven't been posts the past few weeks. DM and I have been running around like chickens with our heads cut off, and we will continue to for the next few weeks. You see, yesterday morning, DM and I officially became homeowners! A beautiful 1969 ranch house on a quiet dead-end street will be the site of all of our future gaming experiences. We just have to move in without killing each other first... but that's an adventure we'll have when we get to it! First, we've got to fix the place up a little before we move.

I wonder if we can make this more enjoyable by looking at it as leveling up?

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Tableside Treats: Peanut Butter Brownie Bites

A few weeks ago, my boss had a baby shower at work (and now has a beautiful baby girl!) and due to me going on vacation, I didn't get the chance to throw into the pot to get her a gift. So, to make up for it, I offered to supply some treats.

Now, since I joined Pinterest, I went scanning all my favorite cooking blogs to save the recipes I wanted to make in one convenient area, so when it came time to decide what to make, I went scanning my "dessert" pins and found THESE.

Peanut Butter Cup Brownies
Recipe from Baked Perfection
Makes ~40 mini-brownies

1 box of your favorite brownie mix
1/2 cup peanut butter chips
1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray or grease 40 mini-muffin cups. (Grease liberally, as these WILL stick if not. PAM works great here.)

Prepare boxed brownie mix as directed. Spoon batter evenly into muffin cups (about 1 heaping teaspoon). Bake for 13-15 minutes or until top is set and a toothpick inserted into center comes out slightly wet. After brownies are out of the oven, wait for centers to fall. This will happen upon cooling. If not then tap the centers with the back of a teaspoon to make a hole for the peanut butter. (I ended up needing to use the teaspoon and it worked great)

Place peanut butter in a small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high for 45 seconds then stir. While brownies are still warm spoon about half a teaspoon of peanut butter into the center of each brownie. Top with semi-sweet chocolate chips and peanut butter chips. Cool completely in pan.


These are heaven in bite-sized form. They're like Reese's Cups if Reese's Cups were made of brownies instead of chocolate. So good, they do not last. I went to work the day of the party with 36. I came home with two. TWO! The entire batch of 39 didn't last more than 24 hours. Not even the s'mores cookies were that popular (although I admit I didn't take them all in on one day). My own mother's made two batches for various events, and she said that both batches were gone by the time she managed to get to them. If you make this, be 100% sure to save a few JUST for you! And I don't need to tell you guys how perfect these are for a game night snack. They're a clean finger food, so just put them on a platter or in a bowl once they're cooled and you're good to go!

Happy rolling (and baking!)

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Like Board Games? Read Roll a D6

Sorry folks, no big update today, things got a little hectic this week. So instead of a big post, I'm just going to plug a new blog belonging to a friend's husband, Rolling a D6. If you like board games and want to get reviews and stories about new, unusual or obscure games, give it a look, and tell them GR20 sent you. :)

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Geek Gear: The Blade Runner Umbrella

When I think about what led to my geekdom, I keep getting drawn back to my father. As a child, I watched a lot of things with my family. With my mom and grandfather, we watched stuff like Early Edition, Everybody Loves Raymond, and Touched by an Angel. With my dad, though, I remember Star Trek: TNG, DS9 and Voyager, Babylon 5, and wrestling. We'd sit on the couch watching the original Star Wars films for days when it came on TV. I was indoctrinated into the world of Sci-Fi from my earliest memories thanks to my dad. One of his favorite movies is Blade Runner. It wasn't one I saw until I was older, but when I finally did, I loved it (what I could understand at that point, at least). Now, it's been a long time since I last saw it. I remember the plot, the characters, but some details escaped me. Like the umbrellas. I didn't remember the shafts of the umbrellas were lasers until I found this.

Thinkgeek Blade Runner Umbrella

Yeah, I'm not going to forget the umbrellas anymore. Because I want one. I know what Dad's getting for Christmas this year.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

You Never Forget Your First

Do you remember your first ever session of D&D?

I got introduced to tabletop gaming the summer before I started college. Once every week, I went to the local store to play some random game with random people. We'd play three sessions, then new games would start. The store sold every tabletop game you could imagine and I got my hands dirty with some less common ones. Over three months, I lost two characters to one DM (the man had an actual "graveyard" for his kills!) One of the last games I joined in there was a classic D&D. We spent the first session just making our characters. I'd only used pre-made ones so I needed a lot of hand-holding. At the end, though, I had my first D&D character, a half-elf rogue named Ranel. The next Thursday, I sat down with the group, dice and character at the ready, to go on my first D&D adventure.

If you asked me what we did that game, I couldn't tell you. There was some kind of dungeon crawl, possibly some undead. What I do remember, though, is the pair of immature kids' characters making jokes at my character's expense across the table from me. When I got fed up, I simply said, "Cut it out. You know I could kill you both in your sleep." One scoffed back, and the DM stopped the game. "I just want to see something. You two, roll listen checks. You, move silent check." We rolled. DM looked at our results. "Congratulations, you failed your listen checks while sleeping. If this were actually in-game, Ranel would have slit both your throats with coup-de-graces."

Surprisingly, for the rest of that game, those two kids left me alone, and Ranel eventually moved with me to college, becoming my character for DM's game. She eventually became the leader of the team and continued to survive until level 25 or 26, where the game went on hiatus indefinitely from being epic-level broken. I think I owe some of my love of rogues to her, and even though I'll never remember who the DM was, I owe him one for that little interruption to show that girls can game with the best of them.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Character trait: Addiction: Pinning

In the Battletech tabletop game, during character design, you can buy traits. Positive traits improve prove your character and cost points. Negative traits give your character personality and earn you more points. Of course, they limit how many negative trait points you can earn to avoid people taking them all, but picking a few can make a game much more interesting. If I were to stat out myself realistically, I'd definitely have taken the Addiction trait. So let's get this over with...

Hi, my name's Indeah, and I'm addicted to the internet. There's always something online taking up most of my time. A game (or two), a forum (or five), or some kind of social networking site. A few weeks ago, I saw on one of my forums a thread about a new networking website called Pinterest. The girls on it were raving about it, and those of us not on it were curious. I asked a forum friend for an invitation, and later that day, I sat down and logged in. I've been hooked bad ever since.

So what IS Pinterest? It's a kind of site where you can store and share all your online favorites through saving, or "pinning" a picture and some text. You make boards with a topic as specific or general as you want and download a Pin It button to your browser. Find something you like while browsing around? Click Pin It, select what picture you want to pin from the page, what board you want to pin it to, and some text to describe it. When you next go to Pinterest, your pin will be there on that board, and clicking the picture will take you right back to the site you got it from. It's wonderful for saving foods you want to make, craft ideas and directions, home improvement directions, inspirational quotes, or just pictures you like (Yes I have a board just for geeky pictures. It's currently filled with Star Wars stuff). If you're bored, you can scan the things other people have recently pinned and repin anything you like to your own board. Whatever you pin is shared with your friends and followers. You can follow people who post stuff you're interested in, so you get quick access to things you might like. Likewise, people who like what you pin can follow you. You can follow specific boards or all of theirs for each person.

It's still being set up and improved upon, so joining is through invite only. You can get one from a friend who's on it already, or you can request one from the site and could take a few minutes or a few days, but it will come in. You can put in your interests and it'll suggest some people to follow. You can also search for your friends and follow them. The site can be tied into your Facebook or twitter accounts, or you can set up a completely separate one. It's very user friendly and quick to pick up. I can tell you from first hand experience, it's incredibly hard to put back down. Now if you'll excuse me, I've got some pinning to do.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


Ravi here.

Today, I get to talk to you about BAAAAAAALLS OF CAAAAAAAAKE. Okay okay enough of the Duke (for now). I recently tried this delicious cake ball recipe.

UNFORTUNATELY, I was too busy prepping for the party to take pictures, and then I was a little too drunk DURING the party to remember to take pictures. The partygoers ate them all. They also ate all the jelly shots.

Anyway, how to prep this delightfully simple recipe:
1)Bake a cake according to package directions
2)Crumble cake while still warm (not hot, you'll burn yourself, I learned the hard way) into a bowl
3)Mix the crumbled cake with a package of frosting
4)Form the mixture into balls
5)Dip into confectioners coating

I had to do a last minute substitute for 5... I melted some semisweet baking chocolate and drizzled that over the balls. Didn't seem to faze anyone!

REMEMBER! These little buggers are powerful. Sugar highs may be a side effect.

Happy Rolling!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Welcome to the Disc

This has ended up being insanely long, so before we get started, I'll summarize this in a TLDR:
Like fantasy? Like laughing your ass off? Read Terry Pratchett. You'll wonder why you didn't sooner.

When I say "Discworld", what do you think of? If your answer's not "the best long-running fantasy humor series in the world", then get yourself to a bookstore, head to the Sci-Fi/Fantasy section and look under P. Somewhere in there is Sir Terry Pratchett and his simply superb series, the saga of Discworld. Starting with The Colour of Magic and running up to his newest release in October, Snuff, Sir Terry (Yes, he's knighted) has spent over three decades amusing the world with the hilarious adventures of various people living on a flat disc of a world (hence, Discworld), balanced on the backs of four elephants who in turn stand on the back of the Great A'Tuin, an enormous turtle swimming through endless space. And they know this for a fact because they've gone down there and looked.

I've read hundred of books over my life, and not a single one has come close to the way Pratchett makes his characters live, makes you laugh, and weaves flavors of the real world into a fantasy one so well. Everywhere you look in his books, there's a reference to something you know, and if you don't know it, then someday, you'll be somewhere or read something and realize "Wait a second...!" For having over 30 books in a single series, he also makes them some of the easiest books to pick up and read I've ever seen. You can pick up any book in any of the storylines and start reading, and you won't feel like you needed to have read the previous ones to understand what happening. However, you will end up WANTING to read the previous ones.

I'd go into detail about the characters, but frankly there are too many, and you can't just summarize a cast as vibrant and color as the people of Discworld. How many fantasy adventures have you read where the main characters who save the day are old women? His witches, Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg, do it time and time again, and they kick ass while they're at it if they have to. Think the world, history, and life as we know it can be saved by an incompetent, cowardly wizard, the world's first tourist, and a trunk with a hundred legs and bottomless appetite? If there's a magical mess, Rincewind and Twoflower are almost always found in the middle of it, with Rincewind making a manic dash for the end and Twoflower taking pictures of the mess that's coming. How about a thief who's being blackmailed by a congenial tyrant into reforming public services anyway he can think of how? Moist von Lipwig does it in Going Postal and Making Money. And all the while, the most ragtag Night Watch in the world, made up of humans (including one who has letter certifying that he is, in fact, human), dwarves, trolls, vampires, werewolves, and a zombie, led by a human who was raised by dwarves, are hard at work protecting their city and their own by any means necessary. Even Death, yes the skeleton in the black cowl with a scythe, has his own stories (and is the most prolific character, appearing at least once in every book). And really, that's not even everyone. There are several once-offs and other storylines I haven't even mentioned, and countless other minor characters you'll see throughout each storyline (such as the Librarian. He was a man. Now he's an orangutan. Whatever you do, don't call him a monkey) and yet, despite there being dozens of names and faces that show up time and time again, they all have their own personalities, their own stories, you're thrilled when they make it through their next challenge and sad if they don't (hey, Death doesn't just hang around for no reason...except for with Rincewind.) You get to know them all as well as your own family, and you're sad when there's no more book to read.

I couldn't tell you how many years ago it was the DM handed me Guards! Guards! and told me to give it a read. It didn't win my interest, honestly. Then, I read Making Money and was actually hooked. Since then, I've read all but one Discworld book, and reread Guards! Guards! (I liked it MUCH better when I knew the characters and fully understood what was happening). Hands down, it's my favorite series, and I can't describe the admiration I have for Sir Terry, as a writer and as a person. A few years ago, my favorite author was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's. A few years later, he's continuing to write and says he still has at least two more stories in him. As well as writing, he's still traveling, sharing with the world his encouragement for assisted death, and it feels like he's getting things done, or at least raising awareness. He hasn't let a diagnosis stop him at all. I don't know if I could be as strong as he gives the appearance of being with such a horrible diagnosis, but if it happened to me, I know who I would look up to for the strength to keep going. I already look up to him as an aspiring fantasy writer, and hope that maybe, someday, I'll have the chance to meet him before it's too late.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The Infamous Random Encounter Table

Ravi here.

Aaaaand we're definitely back. I was definitely not sure that I'd make it through THAT dungeon. In any case, here's the table:

1: Ramenlicious
2-10: Food
11-19: Reroll
20-29: Review Something
30-39: Books n Booze
40-49: Around the Campfire
50-59: Toss Up!
60-69: Geek Gear
70-74: Anything Dice
75-79: Stat Something
80-89: GoGoGadget
90-94: Sister Pick
94-99: In-Character Post
100: Anything Goes

Sister A will roll a d100. The number on the d100 is the topic for next post. Sister A will then tell sister B that number, and sister B will proceed to write on that topic.

Ramenlicious: We will post about and possibly make something from Ramenlicious.
Reroll: We reroll and write about the next thing that comes up (duh).
Review Something: We will review something geeky, like a webcomic or a game.
Books n Booze: If it's Indeah's turn to write, you're gonna hear about books. If it's MY turn to write, you're gonna hear about booze. If I've already HAD booze, you might hear about both.
Around the Campfire: We tell you a tale about gaming.
Toss Up!: Roll 2 more times. Sister A tells sister B what she rolled. Sister B may pick or flip a coin.
Geek Chic: We'll write about stuff that we either have or like that is geeky. Like the d20 necklace that Indeah and DM gave me.
Anything Dice: If it's dice or dice-related, expect us to talk about it.
Stat Something: Ever wondered what the stats of the Killer Rabbit would be? It's kinda like that. Take something that amuses us, and stat it for a DnD game.
GoGoGadget: Nifty geek gadget articles go here.
Sister Pick: When sister A picks for sister B... and sister B hopes that she hasn't done anything to annoy sister A recently.
In-Character Post: When we post as if we are playing. It may terrify or amuse you. Or both.
Anything Goes: If I have to explain this, I'm gonna need more booze.

There you have it. Now I'm just gonna roll for Indeah...

Oh, she'll love this one.

Happy Rolling!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

It lives!

- And THAT'S why we ended up with a mountain troll in the party. I know, crazy right? And don't even get me started on this efreeti I'm running with- what? We're back?

Hello lovelies, and welcome back! Sorry for the impromptu hiatus, Ravi and I made our little random topic generator, and promptly... well... lost it. Not our finest moment in the life of blogging adventurers. Since then, Ravi's been quite busy with her new job and I've undertaken the adventure of Camp NaNoWriMo for August. Just a few more days for that one for me. But for all the writing I've been doing for Camp, I've been neglecting you all, and I have so much to talk about! Hopefully our absence hasn't chased you all away, because while we're still minus one random topic generator (we have been failing our search checks to find it...), we're back and hopefully better than ever! Look for new posts starting next Tuesday!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

We'll return to your regularly scheduled programming soon

Ravi's currently not feeling well, and we're still working on our new format for posting, which may include a change of schedule for us (but not for you, dear readers. We're still going to be Tuesday and Saturday.) Please be patient with us, and we'll return to your regularly scheduled nerdery soon.

Until then, happy rolling!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Pathfinder - D&D Powered Up

Hello readers! Since Ravi got to post on Tuesday when it was my turn, I'm taking over for this Saturday to even us out while the Random Topic table is completed!

I've mentioned in a few articles previously about the game DM and I have been playing with our friends Matt and Bryan. What I haven't said yet is that this game? It's not D&D. It looks like D&D, it plays like D&D, and for all intents and purposes, it IS D&D. But it's not quite. It's called Pathfinder.

Basically, Pathfinder was made by a group of people who found too many minor issues with D&D, how characters were made, and how it played in 3.5 rules and decided "We can do this." Well, maybe it didn't happen exactly like that, but it certainly feels like it. Classes that were lacking a bit got boosted, techniques that were complicated got simplified (combat maneuvers like tripping, grappling, disarming and the like has become SO much easier to calculate). DM says in his opinion, one of the most important differences between D&D 3.5 and Pathfinder is that it encourages people to think hard between prestiging out or sticking with a single class for 20 levels due to all the improvements made to flesh out the core classes and make them more interesting and desirable, especially with melee classes. Magic has also been simplified without being weakened and casters can mesh better with the melee-ers without overstepping themselves. One of my favorite changes? Instead of applying only to the one opponent you designate per round, the feat Dodge applies as a flat AC bonus. No declaring who you're dodging, just +1 to your AC, which is amazing in large combats.

The great thing is that since Pathfinder is based strongly on 3.5 D&D, you can easily mold the two together when it does come to prestige classes. 3.5 certainly has a much larger variety to choose from. Pathfinder offers plenty of its own unique classes and prestiges though, especially in the Advanced Players Guide and their newest addition, Ultimate Magic. Bryan has taken the Alchemist base class with Master Chymist (I swear DM says that's how it's spelled. I have no idea) prestige for a test drive. They're basically casters who prepare all their spells as potions or bombs, and interestingly, they have a potion that turns them into a Mr. Hyde version of themself. We found it an interesting addition to a team (even though his Mr. Hyde version decided it was best to run off and start slaughtering enemies after the rest had run and the potion wasn't going to wear off. Matt decided that Mr. Hyde wasn't compatible with the rest of the group and made him make a new character.) Monsters have also been pumped up, and creatures that were once not so much a threat or not too intimidating at least LOOK as threatening as they should from their pictures. The art in the Pathfinder books is spectacular.

So if regular D&D is getting dull or you're frustrated with some of the pitfalls of the game, look into Pathfinder. It's D&D at a brand new level and definitely worth a try for your next campaign.

Happy rolling!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Happy Late 50th Post and 51st Post Surprise!

Ravi here.

In honor of the 50th post/Tuesday, I present a cupcake cake.
Yes.  That is a full-sized cake made to look like a cupcake.  Yes, I used a pan.  Yes it was delicious.


After much deliberation (read: we can't cook that fast and I was seriously considering making everything from ramenlicious, then we had a brilliant idea [Namely, not doing anything from ramenlicious]), we have decided to make Tuesday no longer food-exclusive.  What we decided is much nerdier and much more epic.

INTRODUCING: Random Encounter Tuesdays
If you roll dice, this is fairly self-explanatory.  I make a table of possible topics to write on, we roll a d100, and whatever that number is on the table... well, that's the topic for the day.  I'm thinking we announce the topic the week before in order to give some time for us to find and/or write on our given subject matter.  Indeah can confirm or deny. Well, we're basically the DMs of this blog, and only the DM knows what the random encounters are going to be before they happen (unless someone's side-eyeing the Monster Manual.) Let's keep this to ourselves until the day of.

I should have the tables ready to go for next time... expect fudged rolls until we work out the bugs (we love you guys!).

I kinda want to post the finished table on the site, but I will ask for sissy's blessing first, so don't kill me if I deny you access. I don't see why not. Knock yourself out :)  Only we can know EVERYTHING, after all.

Happy Rolling!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

50 Ways You Know You Play Too Much DnD

It's really easy to get completely sucked into DnD and tabletop games. The basic game mechanics are simple, the stories and characters can be fun (with a good DM and other players), and if you're more advanced, you can do anything you want. Eventually, and I promise you it will happen, the games you play will begin to trickle into real life... In honor of our 50th post, Ravi and I give you...

50 Ways You Know You Play Too Much DnD!

1) You begin to wonder what popular characters or historical figures' abilities scores are. Ex: "Hey DM, what do you think the Hulk's strength score is? Who do you think has the higher one between the Hulk and the Thing?"

2) You begin to wonder what YOUR ability scores are. 
*Bonus bonus points if you get depressed thinking about how low your own hit points are.

3) When you trip, can't open a jar, forget something, or are generally unlucky, you figure you just rolled a natural 1.

4) The same goes for doing something awesome, epic, or lucky. Obviously you just rolled a 20.

5) When you see someone believing someone who's obviously lying, you think "Someone just failed his Sense Motive." Or, if the lie is just that crazy and is still believed, "Well, in his defense, that guy's put a ton of skill points into Bluff."
* Bonus points if you think this while watching election footage.

6) When watching a fight sequence, you wonder how many hit points the participants have.
* Bonus points if you calculate how much damage the weapons do plus the wielder's assumed strength bonus versus how many obvious hits they take to figure out an estimated HP total. Extra bonus points if you can pinpoint a critical hit or sneak attack.

7) You can't see anything you think is cool without wondering how stating it out for DnD would work out. (I still want my pet Glyptodon, DM....)
*Bonus points if you actually got your DM to agree. Extra bonus points if you, as the DM, did it.

8) You count succeeding on a task as boosting your points in that skill. (Those s'mores cookies? Totally a point in Craft: Baked Goods.)

9) You wonder what the different potions taste like.

10) When you go to a bar, you look around for any shadowy figures alone at tables.

11) Road rage? No, they've just got a level in Barbarian. 

12) When cooking or doing dishes, you wonder about the mechanical differences between cast iron and stainless steel. What's going to do more damage in event of invaders?

13) You want to learn how to pick a lock. You never know when you're going to need to make an Open Lock check.

14) You actually know what a Kender is.

15) You can't watch the Olympics anymore without thinking about all the checks the participants have to keep making.

16) You get into heated arguments over the alignment of the average person.

17) You know better than to hang out in graveyards. Undead ALWAYS attack when you're in a graveyard.

18) You find yourself frequently explaining to people that dice come in more varieties than 6 sided, or, in the case of being asked to bring some dice to an event, you bring your whole bag.

19) When you have an event to wear a costume, you have a hard time choosing what character of yours you want to dress up as.

20) In said costume, when someone asks you who you are, you end up telling someone your character's whole backstory.
*Bonus points if they didn't ask.

21) You think about who would star/voice your character and teammates in a live action/animated movie.

22) You feel sad that you don't have a Ye Olde Tavern nearby where you can get a mug of ale, a turkey leg, and tough, chewy bread. (And if you do, it's your favorite place to eat.)

23) When a friend suggests drinking games, you wonder how many Constitution checks you'll have to make.

24) You call your pet your familiar.

25) You think about what kind of Charisma bonus you'll get from a cute outfit in the store window.

26) You accidentally call a rock star a bard.

27) When someone asks what languages you speak, you answer "Common."
*Bonus points if you have it as a known language on Facebook.

28) When you get injured, you wish you had a potion or a cleric. Seriously, you'll just need a cure light. You don't have that many HP.

29) Ever since you learned that a Level 1 Commoner could be killed by a housecat, you're much more cautious around Mittens.

30) When most people are stuck in rush hour traffic, they long for jetpacks. You long for a Fly spell.

31) You've wondered what it would feel like to level up.
*Bonus points if you're pretty sure you've felt it.

32) You'd be much more open to flying if all planes came equipped with giant rings of Feather Fall.

33) When something interrupts your boredom, you consider it a plothook.

34) The best gift someone can give you is a new set of dice in your favorite colors.

35) Your alcohol of choice is Crown Royal, because there's no better booze than one that comes with a free dice bag.

36) You think of actions and movement in 6-second turns. Ex: How many turns will it take to cross the office hallway?

37) You wonder about the conversion rate between DnD gold and your local currency. How much would a belt of giant's strength really cost?
*Bonus points if you've actually determined a figure. (Well, if you just find how many GP make up a pound to find the weight of a single coin, then research the current value of gold...)

38) You know how to determine the grapple check for a thumb war or arm wrestling.

39) Instead of doing a haunted house for Halloween, you turn your home into a dungeon crawl.

40) You daydream of it being as easy as putting two skill points in Speak Language to completely learn a foreign language.

41) You'd have paid a lot more attention in class if you were learning Draconic, Celestial, Giant, Druidic...

42) You think a bag of holding would make vacations and moving house so much easier.

43) You can no longer call dice just dice for board games. You play Monopoly with 2d6. (Or 1d12, if you want to give it some love.)

44)You know there's no greater stress relief than making a character sheet of someone who's pissing you off, then sending it through the shredder.

45) You legitimately forgot that not all monks are martial arts masters.

46) You wonder what you took for the feat you got for being Human.

47) Many people hang fuzzy dice in their car. Your hanging plush d20 are not as common.

48) Your idea of a good evening alone is sitting down and rolling up a new character.

49) You've realized just how many of these apply to you.
*Bonus points if you're thought of more.

50) You read Girls Rolling 20s :)

Thanks for sticking around for 50 posts. Onward to 100!

Happy rolling!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Tuesday Tasties: Rosemary Bread!

Ravi here.

Little-known fact: there is a very soft spot in my heart for rosemary.  It is a delicious herb.  So delicious, in fact, there is a rosemary bush on our patio that provides me with a supply that I can never deplete.

Yes.  My love runs THAT deep.

Today, I'm going to share with you a recipe that has always been a big hit with family and friends... when I feel like sharing my precious.  I present to you: rosemary bread!

I first came across this recipe while looking for a rosemary-based side dish for a romantic dinner that I was helping a friend plan and cook for his girlfriend.  The link to the recipe is here.  I really can't explain it any better than they did, so I'm going to refrain from posting the whole thing.

Fair warning: it is a fairly dense loaf.

Happy Eating and Rolling!

Saturday, June 4, 2011


Ravi here.

If you have been around nerds long enough, H. P. Lovecraft's non-Euclidian Elder God has been brought up in conversation at some point.  You know about Cthulhu and have probably seen a horribly punny "O Rl'yeh?" cracked at some point.  I have seen this Eldritch horror, and...


Behold, the adorable Squishable Cthulhu.  I JUST WANNA PICK HIM UP AND SNUGGLE THAT LIL BUGGER.

As you can see, he still causes people to fail SAN checks (as evidenced by my droolery), but the Squishable site promises he won't devour your soul, so it's probably all good.


Happy Rolling!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Geek Eats: Easy Pizza

This weekend, with Matt and Bryan over, we decided to try a new Mediterranean restaurant nearby. I scanned the menu, but being addicted to a specific Mediterranean restaurant below my office, I didn't want to compete with my "usual," which was closed on Sundays. So as I scanned the menu, trying to find something that appealed to me, something in the "appetizer" menu caught my eye. It read: 7" Pita Pizza. My major Mediterranean addiction is pita bread; I like pizza. Jackpot.

We arrive home, I open my pizza, and it's perfect: pepperoni, finely diced onions and thick, gooey mozzarella cheese, if there's any tomato sauce at all it's very, very light handed. Considering this place is right next to a local pizza parlor, I didn't know what to expect, but I'm in love! And it gave me a great idea for future dinners, too. DM and I love pizza, but we usually get it frozen. In fact, I've got a frozen flatbread right next to me for lunch (and I'm wishing it were another from the Mediterranean place). When you find recipes to make your own, they usually involve a several-hour-long process to make the dough, directions for the sauce, basically telling you how to make everything but the meats from scratch. As a working woman, when I get home, the last thing I usually want to do is dig into dough and process some tomatoes. But you know, it made me realize, there are actually a lot of things you can use as a base to replace the dough and make an easy pizza, and because of their sizes, you can often personalize them to your guests and players!

- Bagels and english muffins have the benefit of being small enough you can use a toaster oven to make these versus heating up a full-size oven and you get two servings for each bagel or muffin.
- Pita bread's practically a pre-made flatbread or personal pan pizza dough. Use a very light hand with tomato sauce or even go with a garlic sauce (butter or cream) for a white pizza versus tomato based and just melt the cheese to crisp up the pita for a soft but not soggy pizza.
- Crescent roll dough (see Pizza Roll-ups)
- Tortillas make an amazing Mexican pizza. Fry 2 tortillas in a pan with oil until crisp. Top one tortilla with seasoned beef and refried beans, then cover them with the other tortilla. Spread cheese on top of the second tortilla, pop in the oven for a few minutes until the beans are warmed up and the cheese melted. Top with lettuce, salsa, sour cream, or any other desired cold toppings and serve.

While the Mexican pizza is best for small parties or a regular dinner, the other four options give you quick and easy alternatives to ordering pizza or pulling a frozen one out of the fridge when you've got a group to serve. If you've got an easy alternative single-serving pizza crust that I didn't mention (specifically easy because I've seen a potato crust pizza, but that's not quick or easy in the least), feel free to let me know in the comments. Otherwise, enjoy! 

Happy rolling

Saturday, May 28, 2011

D&D: Breaking the Stereotypes

The other day, my coworker asked me about my weekend plans. Well, for the long holiday weekend, we've got Matt and Bryan coming to visit for an epic weekend of gaming, starting, well, yesterday as of the time this gets published. So when my coworker asked our plans, I answered simply "dork stuff." It's easier than explaining D&D, video games, and in-depth discussions about history, politics, and gaming (not at the same time). Inevitably, though, she asked for clarification, and I had to try to explain what exactly D&D is. I am... not the world's best orator. I stumble over words and have a hard time explaining things to people. I still don't think I quite managed to explain what D&D was, and at the very least, I made it clear that it was a geek activity. After all, everyone knows the people who play D&D are the geeks, dorks and nerds.

When I was talking with DM about my day later, I got to thinking about D&D and its players. Everyone knows the stereotype: overweight, hairy, un- or underemployed, Cheeto-dust-stained and mountain dew breathing, basement-dwelling 30-year-olds rolling dice and pretending to be wizards and warriors in between games of World of Warcraft. The word "hopeless" generally is a qualifier to describe them. And sure, like every stereotype, you'll find someone somewhere who fits that description. But then you look at Ravi and me, two young woman with very different lives who happily dive into worlds of magic and myth. I look at many of the people I've gamed with over the years - some of them have fiances, wives, children; many of them own their own houses and are in successful careers; some of them hate Cheetos and Mountain Dew. Some people you might not expect also play D&D. Robin Williams was (or still is, I'm not sure on the details) one of the most desired DMs in LA. Vin Diesel, yes, Mr. Action Hero, one of the living embodiments of "Cool", also was a HUGE D&D player. There are probably plenty of other Hollywood stars, rock idols, or sports heroes who at some point in their lives adventured in the worlds of a DM's creation. Whoever they are, whoever we are, we've all got one thing in common: we like to have fun. We never entirely grew out of enjoying games and "make believe". My mantra is "The world makes me grow old. Nothing but me makes me grow up." D&D is simply one more way of appeasing my inner child.

That's part of why Ravi and I started this blog. We're breaking the imaginary mold people have about D&D dorks. We wanted to find other women like us and be our own little corner of the internet to say "You've got it wrong. D&D players have many faces, and we're one of them." We wanted to get women who were curious about playing but thought "it's a guy's game" to know it's okay to join in too. We want to be a place to show the world that, just like every other stereotype, the one of the D&D player is not at all standard, starting first and foremost with "Girls can roll 20s too."

Happy Rolling!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

BOOZY TUESDAY!!! (Because I Can)

Ravi here.

Since I'm back, I figured I'd kick off my Tuesday posts with another Boozy Tuesday.  Well, sort of.  See, contrary to the character me, I do drink, but usually in moderation.  Usually.  And never at my parents' house.  And because college is over and my paychecks don't start rolling in for a few more weeks, guess where I'm crashing.

Today, I give you... THE FAUXMOSA!

The mimosa is among my favorite drinks (second only to the strawberry Presidente margarita at Chili's).  I was introduced to this fantabulous concoction at my sister's wedding, and, if you know anything about drinks, you probably know it's fairly simple: equal parts orange juice and champagne.  Earlier this week, I was strongly craving some kind of fruity drink, preferably of an adult nature.  I knew that wasn't going to happen, but I looked in the fridge anyway.  Divine revelation!  Ginger ale sitting right next to the orange juice!

I'm the kind of person who will impulsively carry out an idea, no matter how likely it is to be bad.  I usually fail will saves and wisdom checks.  Surprisingly, this was not a bad idea.  In fact, this was probably the closest-tasting virgin beverage I've ever had.  Then, my mom explained to me that ginger ale is actually pretty close to champagne.  Seeing as I've never had champagne straight, you can see why I'd never come to the conclusion on my own.  This also explained to me why my mother never steals my ginger ale cans... she hates champagne.

1)Acquire a glass.
2)Fill the glass halfway with ginger ale.
3)Fill the rest of the glass with orange juice.

Obviously, the fresher the juice, the better.  We can't all live next to an orange grove, though, so the stuff at the grocery store will work, too.  Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to annoy everyone else in the house by finishing off the orange juice so that there will be nothing for breakfast in the morning.

Well, except for REALLY dark-roast coffee.

Happy rolling!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Are We Dead Yet?

Ravi here.

With all this talk of the end of the world being today, now you can be assured it is: I AM BACK AND I DIDN'T POST THE DAY AFTER.  I was kinda trying to graduate before, sorry.

Seriously, though, all this hooplah about the end of the world and the rapture and whatnot made me play apocalypse games... LOTS of apocalypse games.  My favorite as of right now is one Insectonator: Zombie Mode by Armor Games.  It's more of a rage outlet than an actual game, really, depending on your level mode.  The first 3 modes the game cycles through are "KILL TEH ZOMBIES RAAAARGH!!!" while the last mode is "SAVE YOUR GEMS FROM TEH EVIL ZOMBIES RAAAARGH!!!"  By now, you're probably wondering, "why on earth would I play such a pointless game?"  The answer is, "Because the squishy sound of a zombie being crushed by your toe is oddly satisfying."  Yes.  You can curbstomp a zombie.  You can also play darts with zombies, shoot zombies, blow up zombies, slice zombies, knock zombies over, play basketball with them, and even pick them up and use them to bludgeon other zombies back to hell.  Not bad, eh?

Until next time...

Happy Rolling!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Well, it was bound to happen sometime. I missed a post day. Whoopsie.

I have to admit, it's not really easy to keep up with food posts. I enjoy cooking, I like food blogs, but I usually only have to cook for two. Making food for groups isn't so easy when you don't have groups often. I don't want to just give you guys links to recipes without trying them myself either, though. I like having Tuesdays be specific topics of discussion, though, so I'm thinking it might be time to bring up alternate options for Tuesday Features. What do you think, readers? We've done a bit of a range of posts now - gamer/geek clothes and jewelry, blog links, reviews, and more gaming stories. Is there anything you want to see more of from us? Leave us a comment here or on our Facebook page and Ravi and I will discuss based on what you want more of. Now that Ravi's done with school, you should be seeing her back around here soon.

Happy rolling!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Ruining History for Fun and Profit (minus the profit)

I promised last post that I'd tell you more about the whole "taking over China" thing, and I'm sticking to that. DM and I have always been fans of Koei's "Warriors" series - Dynasty Warriors, Samurai Warriors, and Dynasty Warriors: Gundam. All three are hack-and-slash games against enormous odds, one man against an army. The first two are based in factual history: Samurai in events from 1500s Japan, and Dynasty in events from 200AD China. Particularly, the latter is based on the books Romance of the Three Kingdoms, one of China's four great epics and the history behind it, recorded as the History of the Three Kingdoms. The games always give some of the actual history or novel's details behind the characters and events, making them somewhat educational as well as enjoyable (if you enjoy running around as a supremely overpowered person slaughtering enemy armies and generals singlehandedly. Which I do.)

On the other hand, if that's not up your alley, Koei also made companion games to both historical series: Nobunaga's Ambition and Romance of the Three Kingdoms. As opposed to a single-man bloodbath of the Warriors series, these games are strategic simulation games. In these games, you can either pick a preexisting army to control or you can design your own characters and build your own army. In either case, your ultimate goal is to capture all of the cities and "unite the country" under your banner by building up your cities and your army, recruiting officers from the giant pool of named characters from the eras to lead your men, and one by one conquering your enemies' cities until the last man falls.

I did not expect to like this game, honestly. I'm horrible at strategy and have a hard time thinking more than one move ahead. Watching DM and our friends play it, it looked enjoyable, but overwhelming. And then they convinced me to sit down and play. So one day, home alone, I made an army. I made characters for Ravi, me, DM, and many of our friends, I ran the tutorial, and that weekend, with DM around to help out, I started the game.

8 hours later...

Okay, I don't know if it was actually 8 hours later, but I played a long, long time that first day. I kept saying "just one more turn." One more turn turned into two, into five... It's an immediate addiction. To watch the game, it looks simple, it looks dull and slow, with lots of time devoted to using your few action points to administrate and build up your cities. To play it though, to struggle to hold off 100,000 men from an invading army with 10,000 of your own in your own personal Battle of Thermopylae, to have a newly acquired city suddenly put under siege by the neighboring enemy when you don't have nearly enough men, food or gold to defend it, to march a giant army against the former ally who just betrayed you and squash his entire force into the dirt, to personally behead the leader of the former largest force in the game who decided that your little one was the first on his To Conquer list, to go from the smallest underdog to the largest army with more than double the rest of the remaining makes you feel like a queen. You feel like you're actually doing something, and that something is kicking history in the dick. You want to stand atop of the mountain of fallen enemies, your mismatched army of officers from all other forces behind you and tell History "Kiss my ass, this is my story!"

Even now, so far into the game, I still end up playing straight through the evening until common sense tells me I need to get my butt to bed for work. The one-more-turn syndrome doesn't go away. It's all about sieging one more city, taking out just one more group of attacking soldiers, sending out one more wave of your own,  trying to recruit one more officer whose loyalty to his lord is failing, seeing if any new free officers have shown up in your territory, seeing what your enemies did last turn... for a game that looks so simple, it's so easy to get drawn in. I will say that it does help to know the characters as they're portrayed in the novels or the Dynasty Warriors games, to know who's good to try and recruit when they show up on another team with low loyalty (for example, if he's a major strategist for an opposing side or the warrior that scared away an enemy army with a war cry, the kind of people you don't want your enemies holding onto for long), but you don't need to. You'll pick up names and strengths on your own from how the game is laid out. It just adds another level of fun to yell to DM "Hey honey, guess who I just got!" I can't count how many times he's seen me either punch the air or do a little happy dance from a specific successful recruitment. Yeah, I'm a dork.

I haven't been able to win yet; it's down to myself and two other forces now and stupidly, they're fighting with each other. Like I said earlier, I've got more than double their men, their cities, and their officers combined. With the fighting in the north, the one closest to me has left his southern side almost completely undefended. I've got alliances with both of them, but one is barely there and the other strong. Guess which one's the not-so-hot relationship? Mr. Empty Southern Bases. Next time I play, he's going to regret some life choices...I'm looking forward to squishing him completely between my army and the other remaining army. He joined with the large army in trying to bring me down at the beginning. He's about to pay for his indiscretion.

Happy Rolling!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Everyone Wish Ravi Luck!

Happy Tuesday, readers! It has been an eventful week thus far, hasn't it? Big things happening on a worldwide scale, and a personal scale for me. Some good, some bad, but all pretty eventful. Also, I've been obsessively trying to take over China (details in my next non-food post. Hint: it's a video game). As a result, my kitchen is relatively clean. I really should change that. I'll scan around the internet for snacks for next time.

As for today, I'm forgoing food to wish Ravi GOOD LUCK! She's got her last final of college today! Knock 'em dead, sis! (but not literally. Just because you can use a person as a golfball in D&D doesn't mean you can or should in real life.)

Happy rolling!

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Game of Thrones

Have you seen the newest Big Deal in the geek TV community? Two weeks ago, HBO aired the first episode of Game of Thrones, a ten episode season based on the book A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin, the first book in the Song of Ice and Fire series. For those not in the know, the SoI&F series is an epic fantasy series of political intrigue, murders, wars, magic, and several families all vying for the claim of a single throne. It's gritty, dirty, and holds nothing back; it's real. No one's head is safe from the ax that is Martin's pen, and the series lives by the idea that everyone is mortal, everyone can lose, no matter how righteous or good they may be. Life isn't fair, and neither is Martin as a writer, but it makes for a damn good read.  

I am in love with this series. DM and I were given the books by a good friend as a wedding gift. They're huge, 800 to 1,200 pages each, four in the current series with the fifth coming in the summer. I didn't expect to like them - I'm not a fan of politics. A Game of Thrones, though, ain't your momma'a politics, and I got sucked in. The books are separated by chapters with focus on the events in the lives of different characters, but they all interact amongst each other. I think by the end of the fourth book, A Feast For Crows, I counted at least 15 chapter characters over the series. Even if one chapter was uninteresting to me or focused on a character I disliked, I was drawn to finish it to get to the next chapter, focused on someone else. Despite the disconnected chapters, Martin manages to maintain an easy-to-follow flow and ties the events of the different lives together well. Don't let the density of these books intimidate you, you won't be able to put them down. It does NOT help that Martin is a master of cliffhangers. I often found myself flipping through the pages to see if there was another chapter focusing on that person so we're not left utterly hanging. He didn't always provide, so I had to start on the next book...until I ran out of books.

It's always a concern to me when someone takes a book, a game, a play, and decides to turn it into a movie or tv show. I'm usually left disappointed - book conversions leave out so much, game conversions as just unsatisfying to fans (ESPECIALLY if Uwe Boll gets his hands on them), and plays or musicals have to cut so much to fit into a set time limit. That did not stop me from anxiously waiting for 9PM on Sunday April 17th and the airing of the first episode of Game of Thrones. As much as I'm wary about converting books to visual media, I love it for one sole purpose: even if it flops, it gives you a visual of the characters that you never had before. You get to see them come to life, to put a face to the words and actions. In every sense, HBO's Game of Thrones does not disappoint. The characters are all perfectly cast (with Sean Bean [aka Boromir] as Eddard "Ned" Stark, the patriarch of the main family), and the budget of the show was high enough to make an amazing replica of this medieval fantasy world. My only issue is that they had to age some of the younger Stark children a few years, but they still maintain their personalities and are still recognisable as themselves. They all look and act the roles amazingly. It can be a little hard to pick out the less prominent characters, but it's still doable.

If you enjoy epic fantasy like The Lord of the Rings series, you'll probably find Game of Thrones up your alley, and if you're a little uncertain still, sit down with a bag of popcorn (and no kids, this is NOT a kids safe show. At all. Ever. Just don't do it) and enjoy the hour-long premiere (you can find it on HBO online or on demand). You won't regret it! And if you DO enjoy the books and the show, well, someone happened to dig up a Game of Thrones tabletop game...

Happy rolling!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Tableside Treats: Party Edition

Well, readers, I promised you an awesome spread of gaming food from a party menu, and you're going to get it! While I didn't finish everything I wanted make for my party, I got most of it done, and at the end of the day, most of it was gone! I also had multiple requests for the recipes, so I can safely say the entire spread was well-accepted. All of these recipes will be gone in one or two bites, but make enough to fill up a bunch of hungry gamers.
First off, a classic.
Pigs in a Blanket
1 package cocktail weiners
1-2 Pillsbury crescent roll dough

Open and roll out the crescent roll dough.
Cut it into strips and roll each strip around a cocktail weiner.
Bake according to Pillsbury directions for the dough.

These were the first dish gone. Kids and adults alike kept grabbing one to munch on. Better than hotdogs, I think. These don't even NEED toppings and condiments, which makes them great for serving at a game.
Another classic in the lineup:
Deviled Eggs
Recipe From Here
12 large eggs
2 whole sweet pickles
6 tbsp mayonnaise
4 tsp sweet pickle relish
1 tsp mustard
1/2 tsp prepared horseradish
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp salt
paprika powder

Remove eggs from refrigerator for an hour.
Place eggs into a large pot of warm water.
Bring to a boil and boil 2 minutes MAX.
Turn off heat leaving pot on the burner for 12 minutes.
Remove shells and cut eggs in half lengthwise.
Remove and mash yolks.
Finely dice two 3 inch sweet whole pickles
Mix yolks, diced pickles, and all other ingredients.
Place mix in a plastic bag, cut off a corner and fill eggs.
Lightly dust with Paprika powder.

This recipe makes perfect yolks, beautifully yellow, and they pop right out of the egg. This was the second emptied platter, and I made double this recipe! Not everyone likes eggs, mayo, or sweet pickles, though (DM, not a fan of any of the above), so make sure your friends are fans before putting all the time into shelling the eggs.
And finally, a new favorite from my recipe buddy, Cat!
Turkey Butlers / Turkey Cigars / Smoked Turkey Rolls
1/2 cup butter, melted and allowed to cool at room temp
1/4 lbs shaved (thin sliced) smoked deli turkey
8 oz cream cheese, room temp
1/4 cup sweet minced onion
1/4 cup mayo
1 tsp worcestershire sauce
1 tsp yellow mustard
1 loaf white bread
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350.
Line a baking sheet with nonstick foil.
Chop shaved turkey and place in a medium bowl. Add cream cheese, onion, mayo, worcestershire, and mustard. Using a fork, mix and mash well.
Trim crusts off bread slices.
Place six slices at a time in between two sheets of plastic wrap and roll over them with a rolling pin until 1/8th thick.
Spread cheese and turkey mix on flattened bread slices.
Roll slices into a cigar shape. (I ate one at this stage because it wouldn't fit on the baking sheet, and it's just as good for serving here as when completed!)
Dip ends into the butter mix (for taste and to seal them).
Place seam-side down on baking sheet.
Sprinkle with the parm cheese.
Bake 15-20 minutes until golden.

Baked or not, these are amazing. The flavor of the turkey and cream cheese, plus the crunch of the onions makes this a winner. Rolling them up makes them into a sandwich you can easily eat with one hand, leaving the other free to roll a save against deliciousness (hint: you will fail. The Turkey Butler's Taste rating is too high.)
Sadly, I have 0 pictures of these foods due to my miscalculating the time to make them, running late, and not thinking about it after setting everything up. When I make these again (and I will, you can count on that), I'll be sure to update with pictures.

Happy rolling (and eating!)

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Check the time, it's Loopy O'Clock

For DM, Ravi and I, dice inevitably happens at the end of the day, usually on Friday or Saturday, once we've had time to do everything else for the day, get our ducks in a row and whatnot. This way, when we finally sit down to game, we can go as late as we want and our schedule for the next day allows. It could be midnight, it could be three, four, five in the morning. It all depends on what time one of us needs to be in bed, how much fun we're having, and how much material the DM has for that night. There's one other factor, though: the game is almost over when the clock hits "Loopy".

I can't remember where the term "Loopy o'clock" came from, but it's a familiar term for our gaming sessions. Do you remember this post? This is what happens at Loopy o'clock. Someone gets the giggles, and the giggles are infectious. The other will start laughing, DM will inevitably say "Calm down, it wasn't that funny," and we end up laughing harder. The later it is in the evening and the longer we've been up, the more likely it is to hit the magic hour. There's nothing standard that sets it off, either. The setting can be completely serious or lighthearted, mid-fight or in-game downtime; it can be something said in-character, out-of-character, a roll gone wrong, a roll gone RIGHT, anything with the slightest bit of humor in it. Most likely, it's something that at an earlier time would not have sent us flying into fits of laughter. That's what Loopy o'clock does: the funny get funnier. It brings several minutes of game distraction (sometimes to the point of ending the game early), LOTS of snorts (What are we up to on your count, Ravi?), and that feeling of lightness that comes after tears roll down your face from laughter. It gives you a high you can get while still being completely sober, and it feels good, man. Sometimes we can pull past the magic hour and keep on playing, but more often than not, Loopy o'clock marks time for the game to be slowing down so we can get some much-needed sleep.

So the next time you sit down to play after a long day, the hour draws late and a giggle fit descends upon your game, check your watch - it's Loopy o'clock.

Happy rolling!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Pokemon are not food

Another foodless week here. Sorry folks. Wish I had a good reason, but it's mainly 1) I'm lazy and 2) guess who got Pokemon White this weekend? I've...already played almost 20 hours. I think I have a problem. Hell, I know I do. I've been playing these games since Red and Blue. The only one I didn't get immediately was from the Ruby and Sapphire set - those I waited until Emerald to get. But I know that as time goes on, there will still be Pokemon games, and I'll still be buying them. Watch, Ravi and I will be talking about our grandkids' graduations and I'll still be dragging my wrinkled butt to the store to buy the next Pokemon game. Assuming we have stores still then. Maybe by then, we'll just be buying everything online.

I'm thrilled about this game, though, and not for a reason I thought I would be. Am I thrilled because of the amazingly improved graphics, innovations in the play format, and changes that we're been waiting for since the originals hit the shelves? Of course. Am I thrilled that I can go into a cave and not run into a Zubat or Geodude because for the first time they're not catchable pokemon in the main game? Hell yes, but still not it. I am thrilled because for the first time since Gold and Silver came out, I caught the Pokerus. If you're not familiar with the games, I'm probably talking nonsense, so let me explain. In Gold and Silver, two new things were introduced: shiny pokemon (alt color Pokemon) and Pokerus, a pokemon virus that improves your pokemon's stat gain. The chance of getting either of these in the game is insanely low. I think a pokemon wiki said the chance of finding a wild Pokemon with Pokerus to infect yours is 1 in about 25,000. INSANELY rare. It spreads easily in your party and goes away after two days, but you can "save" it by storing a pokemon infected with it instead of using it. You find out you have the illness by taking your pokemon to a Pokecenter to be healed. The nurse will tell you "Oh! You've got the Pokerus!" when she hands you them back. I've been loyally playing these games for over a decade now, never finding the rare and elusive shiny pokemon, never getting the virus, until finally, last night, I stared at the little figure on my DS telling me that my pokemon were infected. And then I did a little dance. It's about damn time.

I do have a guarantee for you: the next time my Tuesday rolls around, you're going to have a grand slam of treats to read about. Indeah's throwing a party, and she decided to do all of the food. All of it. Well, okay, minus some that a friend has offered to help with. But I've got a decent menu to pull together myself, and it's all bite-sized and great stuff for a gaming session. You're gonna love this set-up.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

You Don't Always Have To Kick Down The Door

We've finally had a few chances to sit down and play D&D lately - life has been getting in the way for both of us playing. Ravi's classes are working towards graduation (You can do it, sis!!) and DM and my weekends have been mostly preoccupied. However, two of our friends have been able to make trips down to visit us on Sundays, and we've happily pulled out the dice for a new game the past two times they've made it here.

The game, run by our friend Matt, is more focused on large-scale battles than D&D usually is, usually us versus three to ten enemies harder than us and a dozen to twenty smaller, easier enemies. We've had to focus much more on strategy and conservation than with a normal dungeon crawl. After two sets of long combat sequences (3 to 6 fights each) and one gained level, we were given the option to pick a goal: kill the hobgoblin king, take out a well of demons, go kick someone out of our territory, or stay there in case of attacks on the city. We chose to go after the hobgoblin king; we had already seen him at least once, but he ran away. So, off we went. We arrive relatively unscathed and find ourselves facing a dozen or so hobgoblins and ogres, with an ettin (a two-headed ogre) behind us. Roll for initiative, right?

Have you ever heard the concept "Walk like you know exactly what you're doing"? Meaning, look like you belong and you can go anywhere. Rather than draw our weapons and fight, we rolled Bluff checks. And rolled Bluff checks. And rolled more Bluff checks. We bluffed and argued our way right through the gates. Do you remember how Han and Luke found Leia without being caught in Star Wars IV: A New Hope? They marched Chewbacca down the halls like stormtroopers escorting a prisoner and killed the guards in the prison itself? Yeah, we did that with DM's Warforged. We avoided probably an hour or two realtime of large combat, broke two other humans out of the prison to help us, and got the jump on about 7 hobgoblins before they knew what hit them. In the end, we got our man with relative ease thanks to a very high summoning scroll Bryan, our other player, had just bought.

It's odd to think about strategy in D&D. It's usually so easy to just kick down the door and barge in. You don't NEED to consider alternatives. But there really are plenty of other ways to use your skills: bluff, intimidate, and diplomacy combined with known languages all allow different forms of negotiation with an enemy (provided they're not mindless. Don't try to negotiate with a zombie. It won't end well for you.) Hide and move silently can help you skirt around a group of enemies, as can climb and some cheap climbing tools. These are all good tactics to consider using when there's the possibility of avoiding a fight. Will you get the experience you would have from straight-up fighting? Not always. That depends on the DM. But if you're low on HP, badly outmatched, or just don't feel like fighting, try a different tactic. You don't always have to kick down the door.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Good Food Blogs

I'm gonna be straight up: I had a dish planned for today. I did not, however, get to the grocery store to get the ingredients. That's gonna have to wait and be my next update. So, in place of a recipe today, I'm putting out a few links to some of my favorite food blogs.

Baked Perfection
A baking blog you may recognize the name of - this is the blog I linked for the s'mores cookies recipe! Risa, the blog's creator, has about three years worth of delicious-looking recipes to scour through with sweets to satisfy any craving or fit any occasion. It's one of my most recent additions to my blog list, but I expect you'll see other recipes from there on here as I practice more with my baking skills.

Cake Wrecks
How many times have you gone to the grocery store or the mall, scanned the cake (or cookie cake, at the mall) rack, and seen utter messes, egregious misspellings, multiple cupcakes squished together in an attempt to shape them into a recognizable form, or brown icing plopped down in a way that makes it look like, well, not icing, to say the least? Cake Wrecks, a humor blog, brings these delicious disasters to the world's attention. Any professionally sold cake is free game to this blog: the more disastrous, the better! At the very least, if you're planning on ordering a cake from a bakery soon, give Cake Wrecks a look. Because if the baker asks if you want anything on top, be sure not to answer "I want sprinkles." 

Hudocks to Haddocks: The Life, Times and Food
A general life blog run by a friend of mine who has a knack for 1) throwing amazing parties and 2) cooking! Many of the recipes she's posted on her blog are in my cookbook compilation, and making these recipes has pushed me outside of my comfort zone of cooking to put something new and regularly delicious on the plate. Some of DM and my favorites include the Creamy Taco Mac and the Broccoli and Shrimp Scampi Pasta. Not all of the recipes will work well around a gaming table, but they'll be hits around the dinner table!

Happy rolling!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Getting Down with Dice

Back when we started this blog, I talked a little bit about the types of dice that are typically used to play tabletop games. They're a common accessory to the tabletop nerd and can be found in complete sets or mix-and-match in any gaming store. Dice themselves seem plain, only mixing up colors in their basic format, but if you want to get creative or show off your nerdiness, your dice can be so much more. Today, I'm showcasing three different ways to express yourself with your dice.

1. There's more than just the basic dice you get in those plastic boxes at a game store. There are metal dice, fuzzy dice, giant dice (and giant fuzzy dice), tiny dice, and even specialty dice (ex: Thorn Dice). If you know someone who works with wood, you might be able to round up a set of wooden dice. There's no better way to express yourself at the table than with special dice.

2. Deck yourself in dice jewelry (ex: here). You usually won't be able to roll it anymore after it's been converted to jewelry, but if it's tastefully design, you can show that you're a geek girl and you're not afraid to show it off with a little bling. (Did you hear DM wincing? Cause I did!) It's also something that with a few tools and a little handiwork, you can learn to make yourself.

3. Invest in a dice bag that shows you roll with the best (ex: here). The only thing that you can use to express your gamer side more than your dice would be your dice bag. Some people use Crown Royale bags, and there's plain or simply designed ones at any gaming store. Etsy has plenty of specialty bags as well (I've seen Dragon-shaped bags and Cthulu-shaped bags as well as the above link), and if you've got some talent with a needle or even a pack of iron-ons and an idea, you can personalize your own.

You've got plenty of options to personalize your dice and show off your gaming style. Whatever you decide to do, remember to have fun; it's all about the game. (Also, Ravi, you just lost it.)

Happy rolling!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Nerdy Nibbles: S'mores Cookies

Let me ask you a question: Who DOESN'T like S'mores? The ooey, gooey, melty, crunchy marshmallow-roasted-on-a-stick-between-two-graham-crackers-with-chocolate goodness is one of my childhood favorites, and something I haven't been able to have for years. Honestly, when you go to the grocery store and do your weekly shopping, how often do you think, "Hm, I should get some marshmallows, graham crackers and chocolate bars and make s'mores"? For me, not often. In any event, most nerdy pursuits don't usually take you anywhere near a campfire, and s'mores are too messy to try and use as table treats. Or at least, they are when you leave them as normal s'mores. When you make them into something else, though...

Introducing the S'mores cookie! Soft, chewy, buttery melt-in-your mouth deliciousness. I was linked to these on the blog Baked Perfection by a friend and fell in love. I knew these were going to be my next entry, and, coincidentally, my first ever real, honest-to-goodness baking adventure. I have never in my life made real cookies. These were a triumph!

At their base, these are chocolate chip cookies with graham cracker crumbs in the dough. During the last few minutes in the oven, they're topped with marshmallows and chopped Hershey bars. They're surprisingly simple to make and they're good as both mini-cookies and full-sized ones. The recipe makes around 4 dozen - I made 30 mini-cookies and 18 large ones.

S'mores Cookies (from Baked Perfection)

  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 dash of cinnamon
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups miniature chocolate chips (regular sized chocolate chips work too, I found out accidentally)
  • 1 1/2 cups mini marshmallows
  • 2-3 Hershey bars, chopped
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a medium bowl, combine the flour, graham cracker crumbs, baking soda, salt, and dash of cinnamon. In a second larger bowl, beat together the butter, sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract until smooth. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Slowly beat in the flour and graham cracker mixture until smooth. Stir in the chocolate chips. Drop in balls onto either ungreased cookie sheet or cookie sheet lined with aluminum foil. (I used the foil.)

Bake for 8 minutes and carefully remove from the oven. Push 3 to 4 marshmallows and a few pieces of Hershey bar into each cookie. Return to the oven and bake an additional 3-4 minutes until fully cooked. Let cool and enjoy! Share with friends if you can...

Happy rolling (and baking!)

(This recipe shared on Sweet As Sugar Cookies)

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Video Games Live: The Best Concert A Nerd Can Imagine

DM's birthday was last month, and we were surprised a few weeks early with a trio of tickets to a concert in his hometown. It wasn't just any concert, though. It's a show I only vaguely knew about called Video Games Live, and it's almost exactly what it sounds like. Local orchestras team up with two top video game composers (Tommy Tallarico [host] and Wataru Hokoyama [conductor] for our show) and play several mind-blowing hours of classic video game music accented by game footage and lighting.

VGL started in 2005 and has expanded to anywhere between 50 and 70 shows a year in countless cities, and they're all performed with the local orchestra and for the first time this year, they came to our state. According to Tommy, our show was lucky enough to have over 110 performers on stage at once, and it was utterly stunning! They performed pieces from everything: A highlight reel of old classics to start, followed up with Metal Gear Solid, Legend of Zelda, Sonic the Hedgehog, Final Fantasy 7, Halo, World of Warcraft, Kingdom Hearts, a beautiful-looking game called Afrika that was composed by the conductor, and they finished up with Castlevania and Chrono Trigger/Cross. I'm sure I'm forgetting one or two.

Along with the standard music, they had several extras. Before the show, apparently, there was a cosplay contest and it was won by a VERY deserving costume I'll describe later. Martin Leung, a young pianist famed for playing the Mario theme blindfolded serenaded us with a Final Fantasy 7 medley and a repeat of his blind Mario performance. Two people got the chance to win prizes by playing games on stage while the orchestra performed (one played Space Invaders, another played Expert mode of Sweet Emotion on Guitar Hero. He was only asked to play Hard - he upped the ante himself.) There was a video of the first ever video game being played and a live Skype interview with the inventor of the game. There were also cute little videos of video game mix-ups (What if Sonic were the main character of Pac-Man, or GTA played like Frogger?) and top 10 lists (we saw  Top 10 worst video game voice acting and Top 10 worst video game names. Apparently there's a Korean dictionary game for the DS they decided to call, in America, Touch DIC. Bravo, translators.) All together, it made for a completely amazing time! They encourage getting involved and rooting for your favorite games - by the end of the night I could swear I wasn't going to have a voice in the morning!

After the show, there was a Meet & Greet with Martin Leung, Tommy Tallarico and Wataru Hokoyama in the auditorium's lobby. We decided to get swag first before getting in line, and having waited to come out of the theater itself, we were near the back of the line. I decided to people watch and see if I could spot some of the cosplayers. There was a Riku (FFX) running about getting pictures, and after several minutes, I spotted on the other end of the lobby a giant Sackboy costume running around giving hugs and getting pictures. I just assumed he was someone with the show as he was acting like a professional mascot.

After we finally got our things, we hopped into the M&G line. Most people had already left, but the line was still decently long. The three of us chatted amongst ourselves for a minute before I turned around to see how many people had lined up behind us. And not 5 feet behind me was Sackboy, standing a good 8 to 9 feet tall. Let me tell you, that's not something that you want to see directly behind you. We struck up a conversation, though, and spent the entire time in line talking with him and his girlfriend. The costume was made primarily of foam and burlap, was impossible to take off without help, his head was level with the costume's mouth, and it had taken several weeks to make. Also, they had a second at home for her. Simply stunning. We five stayed at the end of the line and happily got our autographs, a little chat with the group, and watched as all three signed the Sackboy costume. We all left the concert with good music, good memories, and new friends.

If you're a fan of video games and video game music, check out Video Games Live. It was seriously one of the best concert experiences I've ever had, and if they come back again next year, you can bet you'll see us there. If you can't go to the live concert, they also sell CDs, DVDs and Blu-Rays of their shows so you can enjoy it again and again from the privacy of your own home. But seriously, if you have the option and the ability, go see it live. You will not regret it.

Happy rolling!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

I Accidentally the Whole Keyboard

Ravi here.

I can't stop window shopping on the internet.  It's probably a legitimate addiction at this point.  I find the strangest things... or they find me, one or the other.  One such oddity found its way to me just the other day...

Okay, internet, that is enough.  I draw the line.  WHY WOULD YOU DO THIS???

Now I'm not sure whether to love or hate these things.  Sheer ridiculousness coupled with utter... I don't even...

I'm gonna go lie down.

Happy Rolling...

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Nerdy Nibbles: Cooking with Comics

One thing I love about webcomics is how often artists will band together for a cause. Almost every major disaster the past few years has been met with fundraising by webcomics, and collaboration events have sprung up for countless charities. Sometimes the artists will draw comics together for an extended period of time like a telethon. Sometimes they'll make posters or exclusive content for donators. And occasionally, you'll get something really unique.

If you couldn't tell from the banner, what we have here is a cookbook, which is why I'm talking about it today. Each recipe in the cookbook is in comic format, drawn by many webcomic artists both new and old with characters familiar to fan of their series, including several that I'm a fan of currently. From breakfast to dinner, the cookbook professes to have 50+ recipes and 90 full-color pages worthy of drooling over. And the greatest part? The proceeds from purchasing this collection of recipes will go towards feeding hungry families by supporting regional food banks!

Right now, it's available for preorder here and should be available at the end of the month. For now, it will primarily be available for purchase on the website, but if you're in the Chicago area, the first printing will be available at Chicago's Comic & Entertainment Expo March 18th-20th. According to Kurt from TGT Media, the proceeds from this event will go towards Chicago's regional food banks, and plans are being made to expand to other regions in the USA and Canada. You may also be able to find it later in your local comic book shop or other retailers.

I love comics, I love cooking, and I love supporting good causes. I can guarantee this cookbook will find its way onto my shelf, and I hope you'll consider supporting the Canadian and American National Food Banks, webcomic artist collaborations, and good food by picking up a copy for yourself.

Happy rolling!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Our Geeky Wedding

You've probably figured out by now that DM and I are married. We've only said it several times. He was my DM when we started dating in 2004 and he continues to be my DM today. Our relationship was built around a mutual love for all things nerdy. So when we finally tied the knot June 5th, 2010, I felt that we had to have some touches of Geek in it. A traditional wedding is anything but what we were looking for, so we didn't go with it. We were outdoors at lunchtime in the mountains, serving sandwiches and homemade chips from a local restaurant to 60ish of our closest friends and family. It was a perfect day, and everyone had a good time. What made it the best, though, was that we were completely unabashed by the geeky little things we did to make the wedding our own.

DM's sister-in-law offered to play violin for us as we walked down the aisle. A very sweet offer from my matron of honor, and one I was happy to accept. Primarily because she's a talented violinist who already knew how to play the Legend of Zelda theme. My brother-in-law convinced her to learn it, and they in turn convinced us (it wasn't hard) to use it. I was more than happy to walk down the aisle after tying the knot to Link's theme. I had walked up it to Zelda's Lullabye, so really, it only made sense. I am not ashamed that I was married to video game music - both are beautiful instrumentals with strong, happy memories behind them.

After a few queries of whose idea the music had been from the few friends who recognized it, there was another nerdy treat awaiting them. Atop our wedding cake sat this little pair:

Those there are a pair of Zaku II SD models from the Gundam series. DM and I painted and assembled them ourselves, mounted them on a piece of plywood we sanded and washed thoroughly, and posed them in the closest position to holding hands as we could - crossing axes. And yes, the "bride" one is holding a small fabric rose. No other cake topper we could think of could express "us" as well as this homemade geek topper, and our friends and family seemed to agree. It was small and simple, but it was undeniably "DM and Indeah".

That was all the geek we infused in the wedding itself, but with a lunch reception, we had the rest of the day ahead of us. Most weddings end with people going home and going to bed as it's usually late. Ours? All us "kids" in the area got together at the local arcade where we proceeded to drive go karts, play a Singles versus Couples laser tag match, and played arcade games until the place closed. Yep, going to an arcade is how we decided to spend our wedding night, and I don't regret a moment of it. 

If you're still waiting for your Mr. (or Mrs!) Right, let me leave you with some advice: when the time comes, there's a ring on your finger and you're planning the big day, don't be afraid of "what other people will think" about the little things. It's your day, and there's no one that day will be more important to than your and your future betrothed. Make it your own, and don't look back. You won't regret those little touches that let who you and your loved one are shine through.

Happy rolling!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Nerdy Noms: Bubbly Koolaid

Ravi here.

I know the title doesn't sound like much of a recipe, but, it goes in your mouth and you have to make it, also it is DELICIOUS.

This is an original "recipe," the idea for which originated while my boyfriend and I were having our not-valentine's dinner.  While sipping my glass of ginger ale, I thought to myself, "what if this ginger-ale were grape-flavored?"  Apparently, I had thought aloud, because, as soon as the thought crossed my mind, boyfriend ran to my cupboard and grabbed my Koolaid packets.  I vaguely remember thinking "this is what stoner zen moments must be like" as we huddled over a glass of ginger ale and poured the individual packet in.

The result?  Well, first the ginger ale outgassed.  A LOT.  Then we realized we needed to use a lot more ginger ale than we would have used water.  Otherwise, it was SPECTACULAR.  We were quite pleased.

Let me know how it tastes in other flavors!

Happy Rolling!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

A Sure-Fire Monopoly Shortener

Ravi here.

During my quest to attain the coveted MUDKIP, I realized something: I HAVE NO SHOT GLASSES.  Needles to say, Side Quest Unlocked: Attain Shot Drinking Receptacles.

I searched far and wide for an appropriate set of shot glasses.  Walmart, Target, Party City, Bed Bath and Beyond, Kohls, Think Geek, Amazon... the list goes on for considerably longer than would make a good story.  While I ended up settling for the cheapest glasses I could find, many others caught my eye and have been placed in a magical "someday" list.  One such glass I actually sat down and thought of excuses to use it should it ever come into my possession.


I came up with a list of ways I would use this.

How Ravi would use these shot glasses:
Monopoly shortener - After turn 3ish, you won't be playing Monopoly anymore, or at least you will be playing A MORE FUN VERSION OF MONOPOLY.  (Seriously, though, if you do this, use something with a lower alcoholic content, like beer or hard lemonade, unless you really want the game to end at 3 turns.  No, really, you will DIE if you go too long with hard liquor, that's 2 shots PER TURN).
Roll for liver damage - Because if I don't say it, sissy will.
Encounter enhancer - My wolves roll damage with d6's.  Enough said.
Pick a drinking game - I don't think it even matters which game, you can make up at least 50 with these.
DM dice - For, you know, when I finally get around to hosting that game.

Yes, I have decided I really like these shot glasses.  Someday, when I have them, I will use them to do all of the above and review them so you all know whether or not you want these glorious ideas.

Happy Shots Rolling!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Nerdy Nibbles - No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

Still working on that name...Any opinions on which you like most? I've set up a poll on the right side of the blog for you to pick your favorite. We're having a hard time deciding, so we're taking our readers' opinion into account.

So! I feel officially like a blogger now. I realized yesterday "Oh wait! It's my day to update, and I don't have a food to post!" Scramble maneuvers initiated, a grocery store quest activated, and I came out the other end with cookies. You get cookies today for being good readers! And I've officially done something just to make a blog post about it. Yes, I may be a little crazy.

I've heard of No-Bake cookies before, but I've never made them. Heck, the Oreo Truffles were the most complicated dessert I had ever made. Well, maybe they still are. This cookie recipe is easy as pie (easier I guess. I've never made pie) and sure to delight your friends. I'd say they're healthy tableside treats, but I think the 2 cups of sugar counteracts that.

No-Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies

(picture goes here)

  • 1 stick or 1/2 cup butter or margarine
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 tablespoons cocoa
  • 3 cups quick-cooking oats
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1. In a medium saucepan, heat the first 4 ingredients to a boil. Boil continuously for one minute while stirring occasionally.
2. Add the last three ingredients and mix well.
3. Using a cookie scoop, ice cream scoop, or spoon, drop dollops of the mixture onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. (to keep the baking sheet clean, double up on the parchment paper. The oils will leak through the parchment paper.
4. Let them harder, and they're good to go! You can also freeze or refridgerate them well.

Optionally, you can add a few other things - raisins, coconut, caramel, whatever you like with your chocolate, peanut butter and oatmeal. This recipe makes between 15 to 24 cookies depending on how large you want them to be. Whatever the size, they're delicious!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Webcomic Review: Looking For Group

Ever since I was a little girl, I loved comics. So when I was introduced to webcomics, it became a quick, constantly growing addiction. Today, I have over 100 I follow on a regular basis organized by update schedule. Reading them is the first thing I do in the morning, and sometimes the last thing I do at night. Starting today, many of my updates will be links to and reviews of various comics on the internet, and I'm starting off with one of the greats - Looking For Group.

Made through a collaboration between Ryan Sohmer (writer) and Lar deSouza (artist), Looking For Group parodies mainly MMORPGs, but throws in touches of anything and everything Geek, including but not at all limited to: D&D, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Dune, The Lion King, Discovery's infamous Boom-De-Yah-Dah song, even the Smurfs. The plot covers the enthralling adventure of Cale'Anon, an optimistic elf who is determined to throw off the stereotypes of his race as villains, but finds himself immediately teamed up with Richard, an undead warlock with a penchant for death, destruction, and endless humor, Benny (aka Gid), a troll priestess who's up to her neck in trouble, and Krunch Bloodrage, Benny's Tauren adoptive father and the balance to Cale's good and Richard's evil. Cale and Richard alone are the perfect odd couple of adventuring, and when combined with the rest of the series' colorful cast, they experience unparalleled character growth and depth. Joined by many others over the story, the cast encounter an adventure the quality of which would fit well alongside many well-loved fantasy epics, including Lord of the Rings and The Song of Ice and Fire series. Overall, Sohmer and deSouza combine serious and talented storytelling with an amazing sense of humor and high-quality art to make a fantasy epic webcomic that few others can compare to and many strive to be like.

Additional reader review - "Looking For Group is one of the most entertaining and addictive web comics that I’ve ever followed. The main character is irritating, yet lovable, and tends to grow on the reader as they follow him through his disaster-ridden quests. Its parodies and inside jokes are hilarious! There’s also Richard, who made me love undead warlocks in a way that should never be… I highly recommend this comic!" - Cat Sass, friend of Indeah and recently-turned LFG fan.

If you couldn't tell, I love this comic. I've been reading it since day one, and I'll continue to read it until it's done. Updating Mondays and Thursdays, it's one of my and Ravi's favorites. The characters are amazingly colorful, especially Richard. He's the undoubted fan favorite, to the point where the creators made plushies and figures of him, which sold out of their preorders within a day. They're supposedly working on a short feature film of the comic. Two trailers have been released for it, both parodying well-loved Disney tunes (Slaughter Your World and This Is War). It's been in the works for a while, but I continue to hold out hope for it - there's no doubt in my mind that it's going to be awesome, and you'll know when it does come out. Ravi will unleash the Squeal Heard Round The World.

TL/DR: Go read Looking For Group. Don't ask questions. Just go do it. Are you reading it yet? Why the hell not?

Happy rolling!