thelerner

Books, Sitcom Binging, Funny sites, Cooking.. What to do inside these days

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Many of us will be spending more time indoors.  Wondering what books, shows, sites and cooking that people might want to share. 

 

Shows, maybe I'll rewatch HBO's Westworld from the start.  Loved season 1 for its philosophy, found season 2, too blood thirsty. 

Books, got a backlog.  I should switch between one thing for fun, the other spiritual or helpful, like a biography.   Someone here recommended an update of the Odyssey (or was it the Illiad?) that looked good. 

Cooking, made a nice lentil soup.  Onions, chopped sweet potato, red lentils, veggie broth, various spices, olive oil & apple cider vinegar.  Delicious thick and filling. 

 

For sites, I like cracked.com for comedy, some funny video series too, like After Hours, they had couple funny Star Wars parodies too.

 

 

 

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I read Frank Herbert's Dune for the first time last week. Also re-reading Mencius and the Analects. On Netflix I've been watching the Kingdom (Korean Joseon zombie show, quite excellent so far). Also watched King Hu's wonderful wuxia film A Touch of Zen (俠女).Eating a fair amount of pasta, will be making lentil soup tonight.

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Expanded activities: cooking, gardening, prayers, checking up on elderly relatives, increased interest in local news, & bashing our new 'back door' govt for their stupidity. 

 

Other than these, everything else remains quite the same. 

We are fortunate as there isn't a full lockdown implemented at this point. 

My feeling is by next week things will become dire, and a full lockdown could be triggered as a result.  

Recorded the first 2 deaths today. One of the deceased was only 36. 

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I've gotten back into Wim Hof breathing, for the past 3 mornings.  Still have to man up and get back into cold showers. 

 

 

On the breathing- (from Wimhofmethod email sent today)

..For one, WHM breathing wards off stress. Do a couple rounds of breathing, and feel yourself take a sobering step back from all the pandemonium.
 
The 2014 Radboud study showed that WHM practice upregulates your immunity by increasing the production of white blood cells and B-lymphocytes. These are the little critters that protect you from foreign marauders such as viruses. WHM practice won’t keep COVID-19 from invading your body, but a strengthened immune system means a bigger arsenal to combat the infection, and therefore fewer and less severe symptoms.

Now, if you’re not feeling too well, and you’re looking to use the Wim Hof Method to fight off the infection: do not do the cold training parts of the method. When you’re sick, your immune system has its hands full just fighting off the virus. If you then expose yourself to the cold, you add another stressor, forcing the immune system to divide its capacity and fight a war on two fronts. We all know how that worked out in the past.

Furthermore, please don’t see Wim Hof Method practice as an adequate substitute for medical treatment. If you exhibit symptoms associated with COVID-19 (a dry cough, fever), seek medical attention and follow the directions of your local health authority.

Everybody can benefit, so be proactive in recommending the WHM to friends and family. The Wim Hof Method is very accessible and we offer many avenues for practice. There is the free app available on the Google Play and Apple stores; the guided breathing bubble on YouTube; and our free MiniClass. This is a great moment to fire up your video course and rekindle your WHM practice.
With bars and gyms closed, you have ample time to do so.
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My god, I binged the entire Friends series in the last two three months during the breaks between (or instead of) writing my thesis... I'm so sick of watching stuff on my computer, and yet I've gotten so used to it!

I also did a cold shower today! Felt great.

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5 hours ago, SirPalomides said:

I read Frank Herbert's Dune for the first time last week. Also re-reading Mencius and the Analects. On Netflix I've been watching the Kingdom (Korean Joseon zombie show, quite excellent so far). Also watched King Hu's wonderful wuxia film A Touch of Zen (俠女).Eating a fair amount of pasta, will be making lentil soup tonight.

 

First time reading Dune is a magical affair--was in northern Sri Lanka and my time was torn between Arrakis and Kilinoichi because I couldn't get my mind out of what still reads as a masterpiece today even amidst the parallel world that I was working in that time. 

 

If you've consumed Dune as a movie or miniseries (or even the fantastic PC game Dune 2 by Westwood Studios), then you'll still enjoy the book. If you know nothing, you'll still love it!

 

Caveat: the new editions contain revised texts by Brian Herbert to match the new canon that he wrote. If you have older editions from before the 2000s, read those instead. Brian has ruined the universe with his prequels and the shitty sequel that concluded after Chapterhouse Dune

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Posted (edited)

Read the Dune books after they were first published, watched the movie and looking forward to the remake. 
 

Binge watched “Man In The High Castle” a few weeks ago which was the second viewing for us. It has to be one of Ridley Scott’s finest productions!

 

Watching “Stargate Atlantis” series for the second time. Well worth watching along with the SG1 series. 

 

All the above is secondary to diligent practice in every spare minute. 
 

Went out last night to Trader Joe’s just prior to closing to avoid crowds and come to find out store hours have been reduced. Second option was Whole Foods right around the corner. Not many people in the store, but most of the shelves were stripped clean. This morning there was a long line at Trader Joe’s well before opening with no one observing spacing which is completely insane! Sometimes I think most people have a death wish or are completely oblivious, most likely oblivious.  We didn’t wait in line, but went about our business. 

Edited by ralis
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1 minute ago, ralis said:

Read the Dune books after they were first published, watched the movie and looking forward to the remake. 
 

Binge watched “Man In The High Castle” a few weeks ago which was the second viewing for us. It has to be one of Ridley Scott’s finest productions!

 

Watching “Stargate Atlantis” series for the second time. Well worth watching along with SG1.

 

All the above is secondary to diligent practice in every spare minute. 
 

Went out last night to Trader Joe’s just prior to closing to avoid crowds and come to find out store hours have been reduced. Second option was Whole Foods right around the corner. Not many people in the store, but most of the shelves were stripped clean. This morning there was a long line at Trader Joe’s well before opening with no one observing spacing which is completely insane! Sometimes I think most people have a death wish or are completely oblivious. We didn’t wait in line, but went about our business. 

 

As quotas are going on for food and I may not even be able to walk to the opposite building where my stuff is stored (including my shaver, yay...), I have enough books and video games to entertain me when I'm not training. Going to go through the Jonathan Carroll series as I finally have almost all of his books, from the Answered Prayers sextet to The Crane's View trilogy and his individual works.

 

Otherwise, been playing a lot of PS4 and Nintendo Switch, from Bloodborne to Yakuza Zero and Super Smash Brothers Ultimate

 

And of course: training. Spending a lot of time in the roof deck, doing an average of 2-3 hours of Zhan Zhuang in any of the eight postures, then the Taiji and Xin Yi practices, then Flying Phoenix. Most days I do 2 hours of Zhan Zhuang, sometimes I decide to go for 3, maybe I'll eventually get to 5 if I feel like beating the previous record, and if I didn't have dog duty, I'd see if I could do the sunrise to sunset challenge. 

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Posted (edited)
Spoiler

Read my books :D 

 

https://BookHip.com/VPMQBW (this one's free) 

 

https://buy.bookfunnel.com/3jahk3k8j7 (this one's almost free) 

 

I'm writing, figuring out how to be an author in today's world -- boy its complicated - Writing, Marketing, trying to build a 'platform'....ranging from the very inspired to the very mercantile.

Also lots of taijiquan, lots of workout (been working out steadily since past 5 months).

 

Edited by dwai
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Posted (edited)
16 hours ago, dwai said:
  Reveal hidden contents

Read my books :D 

 

https://BookHip.com/VPMQBW (this one's free) 

 

https://buy.bookfunnel.com/3jahk3k8j7 (this one's almost free) 

 

I'm writing, figuring out how to be an author in today's world -- boy its complicated - Writing, Marketing, trying to build a 'platform'....ranging from the very inspired to the very mercantile.

Also lots of taijiquan, lots of workout (been working out steadily since past 5 months).

 

An old very good member here was Yael.  She hasn't been around in a couple years, unfortunately, but she turned to writing and has made a living out of it.  Though she's more article oriented.  She's had many insights and has written extensively into the publishing game.

 

Friendly person, might be worth starting a correspondence with.  Especially seeing you're both Dao Bums.

https://yaelwrites.com

stuff she write-

https://businessjournalism.org/2019/01/the-business-of-freelancing/?fbclid=IwAR2-2uWu3lsXgkn_0KuRb3iCtBJH6kmfBqj_N8cJUvEmC6UD4P28aYAZewk

https://businessjournalism.org/2019/09/how-to-fact-check-your-business-story/

 

 

Edited by thelerner
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Posted (edited)

I've been rereading the Malazan books. Top notch gritty, epic fantasy for fans of Game of Thrones. Also finished watching Mr Robot recently. I think that's one of the best shows on Prime at the moment.

 

Edit: Also one thing that I can't do normally because of my work commute which I'm really looking forward to, is completing the Ultimate Yogi challenge

 

https://theultimateyogi.com

 

It's between 1-1.5 hrs of yoga every day for 108 days straight. I've tried it a few times but always had to miss a day or two for work then ended up giving it up. I'm going to complete it this time and do my old bones and flabby arse a favour. I'll come out of this lockdown looking like a super stretchy Adonis.

Edited by Vajra Fist
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13 hours ago, Earl Grey said:

 

First time reading Dune is a magical affair--was in northern Sri Lanka and my time was torn between Arrakis and Kilinoichi because I couldn't get my mind out of what still reads as a masterpiece today even amidst the parallel world that I was working in that time. 

 

If you've consumed Dune as a movie or miniseries (or even the fantastic PC game Dune 2 by Westwood Studios), then you'll still enjoy the book. If you know nothing, you'll still love it!

 

Caveat: the new editions contain revised texts by Brian Herbert to match the new canon that he wrote. If you have older editions from before the 2000s, read those instead. Brian has ruined the universe with his prequels and the shitty sequel that concluded after Chapterhouse Dune

 

I grew up with the David Lynch movie, and also with hearing fans of the book say how terrible it is. Having finally read the book, I still love the Lynch film. It has its flaws but it has extraordinary atmosphere, beautiful images, and an eerie, mystical soundtrack by Toto of all people. Some scenes I think it does remarkably well... the Box, for instance. Anyway, reading the book, it was impossible for me to imagine Paul as anyone other than Kyle MacLachlan. I had seen the series too, and while it does get a lot more things technically right, it doesn't have the same soul.

 

I didn't play Dune 2 but I played the first Dune PC game by Cryo and I thought it was an excellent military strategy game.

 

Anyway I loved the book. My favorite character is easily Lady Jessica. Such a thoroughly formidable person. Compared to her I felt that Paul was a bit of a cypher, though being a cypher goes with the territory of messianic youth protagonists.

 

I was somewhat disappointed with the level of Frank Herbert's prose. Not that he's a bad writer by any means, but it's very... functional. I was expected something a bit more elevated like Gene Wolfe. Oh well.

 

I wasn't aware that the texts had been revised- are you saying Brian Herbert actually altered the text of the novel itself, beyond just adding appendices? I'm hearing a lot of different opinions as to the quality of the sequels in general (including Frank's own). I guess I'll have to find out for myself.
 

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3 minutes ago, SirPalomides said:

 

I grew up with the David Lynch movie, and also with hearing fans of the book say how terrible it is. Having finally read the book, I still love the Lynch film. It has its flaws but it has extraordinary atmosphere, beautiful images, and an eerie, mystical soundtrack by Toto of all people. Some scenes I think it does remarkably well... the Box, for instance. Anyway, reading the book, it was impossible for me to imagine Paul as anyone other than Kyle MacLachlan. I had seen the series too, and while it does get a lot more things technically right, it doesn't have the same soul.

 

I didn't play Dune 2 but I played the first Dune PC game by Cryo and I thought it was an excellent military strategy game.

 

Anyway I loved the book. My favorite character is easily Lady Jessica. Such a thoroughly formidable person. Compared to her I felt that Paul was a bit of a cypher, though being a cypher goes with the territory of messianic youth protagonists.

 

I was somewhat disappointed with the level of Frank Herbert's prose. Not that he's a bad writer by any means, but it's very... functional. I was expected something a bit more elevated like Gene Wolfe. Oh well.

 

I wasn't aware that the texts had been revised- are you saying Brian Herbert actually altered the text of the novel itself, beyond just adding appendices? I'm hearing a lot of different opinions as to the quality of the sequels in general (including Frank's own). I guess I'll have to find out for myself.
 


Yes—whole passages within the original text from page one and onwards are altered to suit Brian’s canon. 🤮

 

More later.

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27 minutes ago, Earl Grey said:


Yes—whole passages within the original text from page one and onwards are altered to suit Brian’s canon. 🤮

 

More later.

 

Yeah, I'd be very curious to see some examples. I can't find any mention of these revisions via Google.

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8 hours ago, SirPalomides said:

 

Yeah, I'd be very curious to see some examples. I can't find any mention of these revisions via Google.

 

A lot of revisions for texts don't necessarily make it to Google. I was living in Bangkok when the movie Cloud Atlas came out and had the chance to buy the British or American book, and noticed that there were huge differences, including cut text, in the American edition. The most glaringly obvious one was the last page of the Sonmi-451 chapter, and as I had Facebook at the time, I posted it there and it was a huge controversy that made many fans wonder how they had different books. 

 

These differences exist apparently in other books like the Harry Potter series, and it is no different in newer or older editions of Michael Moorcock's works. 

 

As for Brian Herbert's additions, there was a note in the publishing information and print edition that stated that there were alterations. My friend had it on tumblr before, but I can't find the link and I am no longer in touch with him, but he copied the differences and it was horrid, particularly changing the birthplace of Paul Atreides to suit the new canon from Brian that I disregard entirely. 

 

Frank's sequels diminish in quality compared to the original, but are still enjoyable; though by the second trilogy with Heretics and God Emperor, it's too weird at that point for many. You can read the original and be happy, or you can read the first trilogy and be happy, and doing it either way gives good closure. I read through it and in my head, everything ends with the first book nicely enough. 

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8 hours ago, Earl Grey said:

I grew up with the David Lynch movie, and also with hearing fans of the book say how terrible it is. Having finally read the book, I still love the Lynch film. It has its flaws but it has extraordinary atmosphere, beautiful images, and an eerie, mystical soundtrack by Toto of all people. Some scenes I think it does remarkably well... the Box, for instance. Anyway, reading the book, it was impossible for me to imagine Paul as anyone other than Kyle MacLachlan. I had seen the series too, and while it does get a lot more things technically right, it doesn't have the same soul.

 

I also grew up with the movie and loved it. Sure, Lynch disowned it, and I see Paul as Kyle too. I have the fan restored version that runs 3 hours long too. Guilty pleasures? Nah--I just enjoy it like I enjoyed many 80s flicks that people would roll their eyes over not just today, but even back then. 

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Loved the original Dune, couldn't get into the sequels or prequel.  Still looking for a movie to do it right.

 

Loved Stephen King's The Stand- Isn't that book getting relevant.  Decade later it came out in an unedited form.  In my opinion the original editor did a good job cutting out some of King's superfluous story lines.  It was interesting seeing how the ghosts of sections cut still echoed in the writing.

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Loved Dune!

I found the next two to be OK but nothing like the first, and stopped after that.

Never read anything after Frank passed.

Some other sci fi series I'd recommend (older stuff):

 Dan Simmons' Hyperion series (4 books)

Two book series by Mary Doria Russell - The Sparrow and Children of God

John Varley's Gaia series

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My days start with coffee, or tea and reading.  I read until something i read prompts me to write.

I write until the heart opens and warms, then play qi gong or go for a walk.

 

Once home, it's time to play.  Games with family or alone.

First meal of the day is between noon and 3pm depending on the body.

Cooking and eating have become meditation.

 

Lately painting has revealed as one of the last remaining gravity wells where local awareness can sink into with some abandon.  I regularly experience losing self in the play of colors and the scrape of knife across canvas, or the pouring of acrylics and the interplay of gravity and the swirling co-mingling of colors.  The only active choice involved is what colors to play with, how thin to mix and how far to stretch, the rest is blissful mindless merging with the process.

 

My wife has been something of a hermit these last four years.  She quit her job after some coaxing, to allow herself full time healing of childhood traumas.  She spends hours in quiet contemplation, listening to satsangs and floating in 'the grey zone'. 

 

My son is a natural home body, so he's appreciating studying from home.  His full course load amounts to about 3 hours of attention, then he's free.  While he's missing his friends, he meets regularly in online games wearing headsets and they have a blast. 

 

We are thriving in our seclusion, which aside from our Saturday volunteering in the local marsh and our hikes/restaurant/museum runs being curtailed has not changed much.

 

My main job is so stressful that as I've aged, seclusion and isolation when not on a project, away from the majority of life has become a bliss unequaled.

 

We love cooking and experimenting with new recipes as a family.  We listen to music, listen to audio books and play a plethora of games, video, card and board based.

 

Lately we've been breaking open our stores of what I find to be the greatest board game of all time.  Mansions of Madness.  It's a story based cooperative game set in the world of Lovecraft.  Where a group of characters are thrust into a horror/mystery scenario and must work together to try and quell the occult machinations, or survive the onslaught of supernatural forces.

 

It's a unique game that uses detailed tiles and figurines and the story is unfolded through a digital app that tells you what aspects of the game to place next, what monsters, npc's are doing and saying and what clues you find reveal.  It's got several puzzle aspects and many of the stories require notes to be taken in order to recall everything needed to solve the situation or survive the dilemna.

 

Most games last 3 hours or so.  We've got four expansions still in the box waiting to be opened.

 

It's almost like camping indoors.

 

We continue to thrive, reach out to friends and family, staying connected through voice.

No panick, but measured care is taken in what used to be mindless activities like taking a walk, or grocery shopping.

 

Love abides.  Connection thrives.  Life unfolds.

 

Blessings Bums...

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If you're into cooking, try this korma recipe (replace chicken with chickpea or equivalent if veggie)

 

Marinade chicken in Yoghurt

Chopped onion, garlic, ginger

Spices:
Crushed cardomom
Cinnamon
Nutmeg?
Cloves
Almonds
Cumin
Corriander
Turmeric
Water
Flour
Salt
Pepper
Slight chilli powder
Double cream
Sugar

 

I haven't put a method in nor measurements because I have always made awful Kormas. Last time I tried, it turned out well, by frying up the onion, garlic and ginger then adding everything else little by little. It's the cream and yoghurt that makes it, so just go with instincts with the rest...

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On 17/03/2020 at 6:45 PM, Papayapple said:

My god, I binged the entire Friends series in the last two three months during the breaks between (or instead of) writing my thesis... I'm so sick of watching stuff on my computer, and yet I've gotten so used to it!

I also did a cold shower today! Felt great.

 

Haha. You might need to shake this up and move over to It's Always Sunny or something.

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16 hours ago, silent thunder said:

Most games last 3 hours or so.  We've got four expansions still in the box waiting to be opened.

Love this. I'll take a look for this game on Amazon. The kid is really into Risk at the moment which we all love and can often take three hours too.

 

Personally I'm really excited about working from home and spending more time with the family. The biggest worry however is having enough food for extended periods of isolation, as people are panic buying from supermarkets here.

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6 hours ago, Vajra Fist said:

Love this. I'll take a look for this game on Amazon. The kid is really into Risk at the moment which we all love and can often take three hours too.

 

Personally I'm really excited about working from home and spending more time with the family. The biggest worry however is having enough food for extended periods of isolation, as people are panic buying from supermarkets here.

Yea, I'm hoping some of the fallout of this pandemic will be more companies realizing the benefits of letting folks work from home.

 

Mansions earns highest marks as one of the most engaging and creative games we've come across in decades and we have a literal closet full of games.  It earns my highest recommendation alongside Talisman.  Particularly unique in that it's a coop game and my son loves those.

 

If your kid is into Risk.  There's a game you should also check out if you haven't, Ikasa, it's similar to Risk but set in Feudal Japan with gameplay that has much more depth of strategy.  It utilizes 5 armies each with 3 Daimyo who recruit/hire four different troop types then these armies move on the board and wage war.  Soldier options are Samurai, Archers, Musket Gunners and Naginata peasants, each with different die rolls for successes and archers/gunners having ranged options. 

 

The board is the country and prefectures of Japan.  Gameplay is similar to Risk, but there's more depth to the play, choosing how to spend koku in hiring soldiers, building structures that increase a prefecture's defenses, ninja strategy and elements of war.  Great strategy fun and one of the more beautiful game boards and pieces in high detail.

 

happy hunting mate!

 

 

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