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Subject: Geek of the Week 294: Capt_S rss

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Bill Lawson
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Its my pleasure to hand over my Geek of the Week honor to my good friend and Geek Buddy Jon Williamson
Jon
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I first met Jon here on BGG when I geekmailed him to ask if would like to play Paths of Glory on vassal. We have still never played POG but we have been steadily playing games by email on vassal ( around 2 1/2, 3 years now).
Jon is well known around BGG and perhaps is most famous for starting the monthly Geek List Wargames on your Table. He since passed this on to others but I will always think of this as Jons Geek List!

And now I give you Jon!




I was in the midst of a family visit as well as making arrangements to fly back to Japan when Bill asked me to be the latest GOTW. I must admit that at first I went through the Seven Stages of Nomination Shock, including embarrassment, a feeling of unworthiness, incredulous confusion, nausea, extreme flatulence, etc. However, in the end decided to just go for it and enjoy the experience despite it being so thoroughly undeserved. Thank you for the honour Bill. So here I sit in Tokyo at 4:00 am (jet lag) to tell my tale.

I came into this world in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and spent my early years moving from base to base as an Army Brat (actually, in Canada that would be an Armed Forces Brat I suppose). The nice thing about it was the exposure to a lot of the country and parts of the world. The flipside is that it entrenched shyness into me that I still struggle with from time to time. Odd isn't it?

My earliest game memories include an assortment of early 70s kids toys such as Buck-Buck-Buckaroo, Kerplunk and Booby-Trap. All spring-loaded or gravity-powered disasters in the making, which at the time scared the shit out of me. I was probably a nervous child. Later I was introduced to Subbuteo and fell in love with soccer/football.

Luckily, I had a brother and brother-in-law who were into gaming. In particular wargaming so around 1975 (when I was 9) I played my first sand table miniatures WW2 scenario and loved the experience. A little later a friend and I played his Dad's copy of Gettysburg and I have been playing wargames ever since. My very first such game was The Battle of the Bulge. However, it was not until I played Terrible Swift Sword: The Battle of Gettysburg that the interest became an addiction. This nicely coincided with my love of history and I have found that a good book/game combo puts me into a state of blissful content like few things can. Mmmmmm .... just thinking about it now makes me want to have a cigarette.

It was not all wargames though. I have really fond memories of trolling the game stores and video arcades in downtown Winnipeg in the late 70s/ early 80s in the midst the D&D craze and soaking in the gaming atmosphere during those Salad Days. I recall during one of those visits a complete stranger staggering away from a FLGS session exclaiming to me that he just lost his Level 11 wizard, complete with a distant look in his eyes and with a hint of near hysteria in his voice. So, that got me to try D&D just to see what all the fuss was about.

For the next 25 years or so I played a lot of the big grand tactical wargames solo (none of my friends were interested) or against my brother on rare visits. I was content enough, but as time passed had come to the conclusion that the hobby was just going to dry up. Boy was I wrong. The gaming industry was in the midst of it's boom-bust-boom and I kept a low profile while the likes of Magic: The Gathering and The Settlers of Catan began to show up in the few remaining stores that still sold games.

The internet saved the hobby for me. I went from a basement recluse to multigame playing recluse in a matter of a few years. I had first come across CSW, but later discovered BGG and thought it was a handy game reference tool. It was only after reading some Geeklist comments and session reports by Pat Hirtle that I reached the conclusion that here was a fellow with a similar background and interests to me. It then slowly dawned on me that the entire site was full of people just like me too. You know.....nerds.

So I signed up and actually posted a comment, which received a thumb! Well, the genie was out of the bottle and before too long I was posting Geeklists, setting up PBEM sessions and meeting a ton of great folks from all around the world here on BGG.

I would be remiss if I did not mention the group of wargamers in Calgary into whose midst I have fallen. The Stratagem club guys have provided me with hours of great FtF games, entertainment and general yammering good times. Also The Sentry Box, my FLGS, is without a doubt the single best game store I have had the pleasure to set foot in.

Yes, I am primarily a wargamer, but I do not believe in playing them to the exclusion of all other games. I am a big supporter of the merits of idea cross pollination between disciplines in academia and I think the same holds true between the various game world genres as well. All games (hopefully) have something to offer and I tend to judge them as individual objects in and of themselves rather than dismissing some just because they do not meet a certain criteria.

Which is the real strength of BGG in my opinion. That is the bringing together of gamers of all ilks and perspectives. Although as individuals we might be more interested in Euros, wargames, abstracts, etc and gravitate to those discussions, as a community of gamers in total we share a bond that is strengthened by our common love of games. We are BGG.

As such I thank you all for making these days the happiest I have ever had in the hobby. Although it is my honour to be GOTW, in my sincere opinion all of you are my "Geeks of the Week".

Today I am happily married to an Anthropology professor (and back to the world travelling days of my youth) and I am a software engineer, but wish to pursue other career paths. Since my wife is now tenured and secure, I think the time to do employment-related things that interest me has arrived.

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Bill Lawson
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I hope one of my fellow geeks can help me out. I have tried and failed to set up a Poll for Jons Two truths and a Lie. Alas I am totally inept! modestHere they are> I hope one of you will set up the Poll here for us (me) . Thanks!


While buying a drink from a vending machine around 1990, included in my change was a 1942 Nazi Germany coin.

During a university exam I, along with several hundred others, saw an upset student physically attack the professor.

I have been part of a team that assisted the police in digging up the remains of a murder victim found in a shallow grave.
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Robert Wesley
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GRATZ! and 'props' on mentioning upon Pat Hirtle too, while kindly inform HIM that he is sorely missed. whistle
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Bob
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CONGRATULATIONS

Enjoy your week in the spotlight Jon!!! thumbsup

Question:

What is your most & least favorite game mechanic and why?

meeple
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J.L. Robert
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Congrats, Jon! Enjoy your moment in the sun.
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Lewis Goldberg
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Happy Week to ye!

So, how well does your wife get along with your hobby?
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J Davis
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Poll
Two truths and a lie Which of these statements is a lie in regards to Jon W?
  Your Answer   Vote Percent Vote Count
While buying a drink from a vending machine around 1990, included in my change was a 1942 Nazi Germany coin.
30.0% 30
During a university exam I, along with several hundred others, saw an upset student physically attack the professor
26.0% 26
I have been part of a team that assisted the police in digging up the remains of a murder victim found in a shallow grave.
44.0% 44
Voters 100
This poll is now closed.   100 answers
Poll created by foggybottom
Closes: Sun May 8, 2011 6:00 am
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Svetlana
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In the confusion and the aftermath you are my signal fire. Hold me close, 'cause I need you to guide me to safety. The only resolution and the only joy is the faint spark of forgiveness in your eyes, I don't want to wait forever...
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Congratulations, Jon! meeple
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J Davis
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Congratulations to Jon. I'd like to take this opportunity to congratulate Bill for last week as well since I never posted in the other thread. It's good to see some wargamers who have been long-term contributors to the site getting this recognition.
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T'Leynti
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Congrats Jon!

d10-1What is your favourite colour when playing a boardgame?
d10-2Spring, Summer, Autumn or Winter?
d10-3Do play an instrument? If yes, which one and for how long already?
d10-4Having fun?
d10-5What would have been your name if your parents didn't name you Jon?
d10-6What is your favourite snack?
d10-7 What is your favourite non-alcoholic drink?
d10-8What is your favourite time of day?

Enjoy your week!
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Jon
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Thanks everyone. Especially to Bill for the nomination and foggybottom for putting together that poll.

Much appreciated, even if it is a bit odd to be the centre of attention. I am more hermit than extrovert.
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Jon
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GROGnads wrote:
GRATZ! and 'props' on mentioning upon Pat Hirtle too, while kindly inform HIM that he is sorely missed. whistle


Every once in a while I will come across a thread that I can tell dealt with one of his session reports and then I get all misty.

Did you every see his The Rise of the Roman Republic offerings? Masterly done.

EDIT: Oops! I quoted Robert and forgot to "Disable emoticons". What was I thinking?

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Gene Baker
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Games with dragons, spaceships, and bears aren’t wargames. Call them conquest games or strategy games or crap but they aren’t wargames.
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Quote:
I must admit that at first I went through the Seven Stages of Nomination Shock, including embarrassment, a feeling of unworthiness, incredulous confusion, nausea, extreme flatulence, etc.


Hopefully not while on the plane!
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Max Coffey
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Congratulations Jon!!

May you have a great time in the well deserved spotlight.

Stick around, I may have questions later
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Bill Lawson
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foggybottom wrote:
Poll
Two truths and a lie Which of these statements is a lie in regards to Jon W?
  Your Answer   Vote Percent Vote Count
While buying a drink from a vending machine around 1990, included in my change was a 1942 Nazi Germany coin.
30.0% 30
During a university exam I, along with several hundred others, saw an upset student physically attack the professor
26.0% 26
I have been part of a team that assisted the police in digging up the remains of a murder victim found in a shallow grave.
44.0% 44
Voters 100
This poll is now closed.   100 answers
Poll created by foggybottom
Closes: Sun May 8, 2011 6:00 am



Thanks!! I knew someone would help me out!!
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Erik Nicely
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Congratulations, Jon. If wargamers keep getting GotW you guys might mobilize and take over the whole damn site.

What wargame did you own but later got rid of without playing that you wish you would have kept and played?

EDIT: Just looked at your microbadges, what is your favorite Kurosawa movie?
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Jon
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Ashitaka wrote:
Question:

What is your most & least favorite game mechanic and why?

meeple


Thanks Bob.

Currently, I am really into the card driven mechanic. I like how, at least for many of the earlier CDGs, it allowed for reduced rulebooks as much of the chrome was on the cards. I have always been partial to games that reduce the demigod-like status of the players, so that is covered by CDGs as well. Since I play a lot of PBEM, the mechanic often allows for quick LOG file creation with is nifty. Finally, I just like to stick cards into plastic sleeves.

My least favourite? Hmmm....I am pretty happy ass, so not much bugs me. Let me think.... Oh, I know. It is not really a mechanic per se, but I did grow weary of some hex and counter wargames that allowed for tons of unit shifts along a front line so as to get that penultimate odds attack. It just feels wrong to me and somewhat reduces a game to a mathematics exercise. Not so bad for those games like A Victory Lost with small stacks and calculations, but when you have big ass number crunching going on it is not for me. Bleh!
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Pete Belli
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Aye, aye, Captain!

thumbsup

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Jan
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Congratulations!

My usual questions:
- Ever played any RPG's?
- Have you ever visited the RPG side of the site?
- Will you congratulate you're RPGG and VGG counterpart?

Have fun this week and may you play many games.
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Jon
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Quote:
Congrats, Jon! Enjoy your moment in the sun.


Thanks J.L.. And thanks for putting together the AH Cup every year. I really look forward to that even though my teams/games crap out for often than not. You have some reall donnybrooks coming up next.

Quote:
So, how well does your wife get along with your hobby?


Thank you Lewis.

Hold on, let me ask her... she says that since she has more obsessive-compulsive hobbies than I have, so she has no grounds for complaint.

I have seen her play the likes of Scrabble and she can get a bit intense. The last time we played (years aggo now) was the only time I beat her. Coincidence?

Every once and awhile she threatens to learn the rules to some wargame and repeatedly thrash me at it in an effort to make me question myself, the hobby and life in general. It has been an empty threat so far. I did get her to play Pandemic once, but being a co-op it was nice neutral ground so to speak.
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John Bobek
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Congratulations Jon!!! I've always meant to say you have one of the coolest avatars! I guess I should ask a question or two. Have you ever played miniatures wargames? If not, what would it take to get you to try them?
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Jon
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Quote:
Hopefully not while on the plane!


Long before pre-boarding thankfully.

I still say we need a fart emoticon!
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Michael Lavoie
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Excellent choice, Billyboy! The Capt. is a fine Geek and well deserving of this honor. Keep the wargamers in the spotlight here on BGG!

Now to ask a question. Your microbadges proclaim you as a gin drinker. What's your favorite gin? I am strictly a craft beer drinker these days (mostly my own brews), but back in the day I was quite fond of gin myself. I was a Tanqueray man 30 years ago. What's your preference?
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Robert Wesley
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Capt_S wrote:
Every once in a while I will come across a thread that I can tell dealt with one of his session reports and then I get all misty.

Did you every see his The Rise of the Roman Republic offerings? Masterly done.

EDIT: Oops! I quoted Robert and forgot to "Disable emoticons". What was I thinking?

alas, those are LONG GONE now, as "if" these have then become their OWN "missing OUT links" for wherever that yet exists... soblue
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BoardGameGeek » Forums » BoardGameGeek Community » Geek of the Week
Re: Geek of the Week 294: Capt_S
Congratulations Jon!

Being an Amnesty International Supporter, are you a little/big fan of "The Secret Policeman's Private Parts" and the music/comedy from the benefit performances done by the Python Crew and other British comedians?

I've been meaning to teach myself the M&P series. What is the best starting place?
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