Geek Chat League Gelato 97 - Tsundoku
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What is a Geek Chat League?

A Geek Chat League is a weekly discussion-group format for people who love gaming and enjoy talking about games. It is intended to foster depth and familiarity, producing engaging content and worthwhile interaction. Members get to know one another, establish shared interests, and generally develop a friendly and productive environment.

Of necessity, each division of GCL is kept relatively small (typically between 12-16 members, though individual divisions may incline one way or the other). A tight-knit discussion group tends to function more smoothly than a free-for-all. It allows individuals to be heard and understood, and for each participant to keep up and enjoy multiple topics as the week progresses. The format is geeklist-based, and lists are not published to the BGG front page.

Policy: If you're a lurker or have otherwise discovered GCL Gelato, feel free to read along with us and see what the members have to say on everything under the sun. If you have a constructive comment or something else you think would add to the discussion, consider posting it — if it's helpful, respectful, and polite to the discussion group as a whole, as well as to its individual members.


Polyglot

mb leroy 43 (Roger)


Tongue-tied and Twisted

mb ad79 (Stig)
mb alex352 (Alex)
mb Capt_S (Jon)
E cmontgo2 (Chris) ***
mb Cole Wehrle (Cole)
mb csottk (Skippen)
mb DocStryder (Doc)
mb leroy43 (Roger)
mb licinius (Carl)
mb lil red head (Nikki)
mb oeolycus (Dan)
mb pete belli (Pete)
mb PzVIE (Ron)
mb Sluggonics (Kyle)
mb tommynomad (T. Nomad)
mb wifwendell (Wendell)


Tsundoku

I came across this Japanese word when reading an article in The Guardian about foreign words that do not translate well, if at all, into English. It references the partial reading of a new book, but then not finishing it and piling it up with a similar stack of unfinished books. It tickled my fancy enough that I passed a link to the article to my friend Wendell. That is because he is an avid book reader and who is also interested in words. This latter point best expressed by the current of his famous geeklists which deals with word origins:

http://boardgamegeek.com/geeklist/151463/the-word-of-the-day...?

Anyway, I thought I would base this week's list on tsundoku and other non-English words that are kind of curious. Sort of a homage to that article I found and Wendell's list.

A collection of silly, trivial questions this week.

Oh and here are the sites that inspired this also:

http://www.rosettastone.co.uk/blog/10-awesome-words-that-don...

http://www.speaklikeapro.co.uk/Foreign_words.htm



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1. Board Game: Reading Between the Lines [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Jon
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As mentioned, the Japanese employ "tsundoku" to mean leaving a newly purchased book unread (or partially read) only to pile it up with similarly underutilized books.

I think I have found the perfect word to describe me as Middle Aged Man. My Fortress of Solitude in the basement consists of two main areas: the gaming section with shelves of unplayed games and the library of shame with its piles of books, about 60% unread. I blame it all on a declining ability to focus.

Do you have unread books in your library?

Which unread title calls out to you the most? Why?

Have you ever abandoned a book series before completing it? Why?

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2. Board Game: Monday Morning Manager [Average Rating:6.19 Unranked]
Jon
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There is a word in Hindi, ungdayee, that describes the first stretch of the day. You know the one .... just after you wake up and you are lying in bed contemplating the meaning of it all ... yeah, THAT stretch.

Being creatures of habit, I suspect most of us have a morning routine.

What is the first thing you do once you get out of bed each morning? Almost unconsciously.
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3. Board Game: Collect [Average Rating:5.15 Unranked]
Jon
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In Swedish, lagom is used to indicate just the right amount. Optimal would also be close translation. The Wikipedia entry links this to the Swedish national / social consciousness whereby extremes are frowned upon. Hmmm...

Consider your game collection. Is it lagom?

What, in your opinion, is the ideal number of games for you personally or even in general?

Should you feel that you have too many games and desire hitting a specific number, name a few "bubble" games (those that would be difficult to determine whether to rid yourself of them or not).
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4. Board Game: Train of Thought [Average Rating:6.02 Overall Rank:5276]
Jon
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Wow ..... is this familiar.

L'esprit d'escalier is the French term for thinking about good points to a discussion after the fact when it is too late. You have, in essence, gone down the stairs and cannot return.

Bah! This is often the circumstance that I find myself in post-argument. And the brilliant point can happen days afterwards. I am envious of people that can debate in real time.

On a slightly related note, I admire people who can get to the salient point of a situation immediately. This is a rare ability in my experience. I could count the number of people I have met who can do so on one hand. In fact, my spouse is one such person which is terrible at times, but really great when she is on your side.

Time for an anecdote. What were the circumstances of the worst job interview you have ever experienced?
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5. Board Game: Memory [Average Rating:4.72 Overall Rank:15293]
Jon
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Culacino is the Italian word for that ring left behind on the table from a drink. Yep .... there is a word for that.

Why not though? I mean, those little rings have been a part of my life for .... well .... all of my life. They should have a name. The little buggers.

So these symbols of drinks past remain as memory devices. Yet I can never recall the individual drinks that caused them. The rings have more permanence than their creators.

I read someplace recently that we cannot remember events over seven years old. What we recall from events older than that are memories of ... wait for it ... memories. Not sure if I buy into that, but perhaps there is shelf age for synapses or neurons? Anyway, there is something haunting about being reduced to remembering mere images of the past. It does a disservice to loved ones somehow.

How important is the memory of individual gaming sessions to your enjoyment of the hobby?

Do you recall the social interactions mostly? Or perhaps the details of play? Both?
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6. Board Game: Zimbbos! [Average Rating:5.55 Overall Rank:12490]
Pete Belli
United States
Florida
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Found a few games at the thrift shops.

This elephant stacking dexterity game for young children has beautiful components and will be played tonight.



Also stumbled across Blast Out which looks really cool... unfortunately, is was incomplete.
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7. Board Game: Unpublished Prototype [Average Rating:6.96 Overall Rank:2242]
Cole Wehrle
United States
St. Paul
Minnesota
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x2 Pax Pamir
x2 Magic Realm

This was one of the lightest weeks in a very long time, but the gaming was quality gaming. I played a game of Magic Realm with Cati and then another round with my brother over RealmSpeak. My (and our) verdict is still out but I'll have some developed thoughts after a few more plays.

I played two rounds of Pax Pamir as well. One with a few locals and another online with my brother using a hastily built digital table.

After 5 plays with the first revised deck I am now ready to open it up to a smallish pool of playtesters. The rules have been incredibly stable over almost all of the playtesting rounds and I feel comfortable opening things up. I'm imagining this period of playtesting to last for 4-6 weeks and I'll use the reports and data as I tune the deck and write the card descriptions (which currently have fill text). After this period and when I finish the descriptions, I'll formally submit the game to Phil.

If you're interested shoot me a PM and I'll share the google folder. The game components are ~10-15 cubes in player colors, some play money. You'll also need to print out 18 pages for cards and play aids. Everything is easy to cut (took me about 10 minutes at fed ex).

The week ahead:
I've got a mountain of papers to grade so its survival mode!

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8. Board Game: 1805: Sea of Glory [Average Rating:7.38 Overall Rank:2746]
Chris Montgomery
United States
Joliet
Illinois
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Weekend Round-Up

This past week, these games were played face-to-face:
None.

This past week, these games started:
None.

This past week, these games continued:
Stonewall Jackson's Way II, Scenario 5 v. Patrick
Battle Above the Clouds, Scenario 1 v. Robert
Burnside Takes Command, Scenario 1 v. Carsten
Battle Above the Clouds,Scenario 3 v. Lawrence
Unhappy King Charles v. Roger
Unhappy King Charles v. Randy
The Napoleonic Wars, 2nd Edition v. Five-Player Game
Battle Above the Clouds, Scenario 1 v. Gordon (continuation of Game from 04/2013)
1889 v. 5-Player (GCL Gelato!) (New Year's Resolution!)
Battle Above the Clouds, Scenario 3 v. Jon (Teaching Game)

This past week, these games concluded:
1805: Sea of Glory, "Change of Plans" C3i Scenario v. Alan (Allied Victory - Me!) (AAR ---> here)

This past week, these games/accessories were acquired:
None.

This past week, these interesting things happened in my games and my life:

1 ---> My Baby Boy. My son continues to amaze. He is talking more and more and picking up on so many things so fast. It is amazing how attachment and love grows, with time. And another one is on the way. Love multiplies.

2 ---> Smoking Cessation. Thanks for bearing with me as I count each week. 53 days and counting.

3 ---> House of Cards. Finished House of Cards this past week. I didn't like how it ended - it felt very contrived, and not in the way that the writers intended. I will continue to watch, but the last three episodes were very predictable and not very satisfying.

4 ---> Burnside Takes Command. This "mini-module" continues to really blow me away. I'm having a great time with it, and hope Carsten sticks around for the other two scenarios in the module. My Union army has lost more men to stragglers than in battle . . . nearly 10,000! It is one of the few scenarios I have played in which the maneuvering, combat, and general feel of the scenario really seems to fit with the American Civil War . . . even a couple of set-piece engagements with rather large stacks of units. Stay tuned for an AAR when this one ends!

5 ---> 1805. I remain undecided on this game. Alan and I have plans to play a full campaign PBEM starting in April. Our play of the game was a victory for me, but it felt won more by luck than any sense of a real strategy. AAR to follow. I'll post a link.

6 ---> Another Auction. I'm leaving this here as a placeholder to remind me to get that auction going. From a previous list: I was looking at my shelves today, crammed with games, and picked out four or five title right off the bat that I know I should dump. So an auction will be coming soon. I may offer a GCL Gelato discount for bids . . . just tossing the idea around - I try to only sell games I don't want, but my auctions usually include some pretty good stuff, just stuff that's not for me. Stay tuned.

Cheers!
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9. Board Game: Polis: Fight for the Hegemony [Average Rating:7.73 Overall Rank:511]
Wendell
United States
Yellow Springs
Ohio
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I've started a PBEM game of this with a fellow BGG user. First experience; very cool. But I fear my Spartans will lose.

World in Flames into March/April '43. My Germans began to execute a strategic retreat in the USSR (I've held Stalingrad long enough for the maximum victory points under the optional rules we're using, not keeping my head in that potential noose any longer than necessary). Another 1/10 split (the worst possible roll) in another naval combat in the Pacific cost my Japanese a carrier. And the Allies are gearing up to invade Italy; we are using optional rules that make the conquest of Italy easier than in normal WIF. Maybe I can sneak the turn marker to 1944...

PBEM Andean Abyss game on its penultimate card; the 4th propaganda card awaits... Somebody not me is up in Cuba Libre and A Distant Plain.

Cataclysm: A Second World War - had another playtest session. The Germans bounced off of the USSR and so instead tried twice to invade the UK. The first time the Germans defeated superior British naval forces but the invasion failed; the British desperately pulled a couple of fleets back and managed to defeat the second invasion. It's a wild game!
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10. Board Game: 1889: History of Shikoku Railways [Average Rating:8.02 Overall Rank:1286]
Dan
United States
San Francisco
California
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Games Completed



So, I introduced two friends to 1889! We played with Rails projected on a TV. I made a quaint, 2-page Quick Start guide for my friends that I'm proud of. It's not hard to teach 1889 if you boil it down to the basics and I think I did a good job. I'm not sure how long it took, maybe around 3h? But the time flew.

My serious (but infrequent) gaming partner was hooked by the end. He actually won by virtue of our other player, Ben, being the object of a couple of company dumps and an untimely (for me) bankruptcy. Am I learning? I'm not sure.

I completed another TTA over at the excellent BGO. Anyone want to play a game?

Games Continued

Twilight Struggle (ladder)
Here I Stand (ACTS)
Cuba Libre (Gelato)
1889 (Gelato)

Games Purchased

Province $5 on Kickstarter
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11. Board Game: The Red Dragon Inn: Allies – Cormac the Mighty [Average Rating:7.52 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.52 Unranked]
Ron
Austria
Vienna
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Gaming Week

Gaming only took place on Saturday, when three friends came over. As Lonny Orgler was one of them, playing a game of 18xx was obvious and I had to decide between two unplayed ones: a brandnew copy of 1858 or 1862 I received a few weeks ago. I went for 1858. It focuses mainly on building track and less on the stock market, and the region is Iberia. It features two types of track (standard gauge and metric gauge) and a whooping number of private companies (22 of them - they have no special powers, but you need them to start a company). Here's the board (after 6 ours playing time) in the final operation round:



I really wanted to play Dungeon Lords again, so I set that one up and we had a great time playing the bad Lords and battling the stupid adventurers who dared to enter our dungeons. I love that game!

Finally we played a game of Tichu - one of my favorite card games since I first played it ... 15 years ago? It was my 200th playing. Yeah! meeple
I also noticed that Z-Man is printing a new edition of Tichu with new and stunning artwork! I'll surely get me a copy in Essen this year!



New Games

Quite a few! I already mentioned 1858, in the same parcel was also Rolling Stock (advertised as the stock market from 18xx without the board). Well, it sounds interesting enough. GMT sent me Blood and Roses (third game in the Men of Iron series) and on Thursday I visited my FLGS, acquiring another train game called Rolling Freight, as well as the Expansion expansion (yes, that's the name!) for Belfort and two small expansions for the Red Dragon Inn game.





R.I.P.

After 21 years, I have to say goodbye to my good old Marantz amp. My radio repair man told me that the necessary parts are no longer available ... bummer. Well, time to get something new. After reading a lot to get me up-to-date with actual HiFi stuff, I opted for the Yamaha A-S1000. It should be in my house beginning of March ... that means no Hi-Fidelity for me at the moment ... soblue

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12. Board Game: The Hunters: German U-Boats at War, 1939-43 [Average Rating:7.71 Overall Rank:928] [Average Rating:7.71 Unranked]
"L'état, c'est moi."
Canada
Vancouver
BC
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This is the week that was:
Carcassonne: Hunters and Gatherers 1
Glen More 1 Forgot to include last week!
The Hunters: German U-Boats at War, 1939-43 1 New to me!
Roll Through the Ages: The Bronze Age 1
Ticket to Ride 1

A lighter week. But a good one.

Last Sunday afternoon my wife said "let's play some games" so I brought out my recently acquired Ticket to Ride: Alvin & Dexter expansion and my daughter joined in for a rousing game of Ticket to Ride. I have to say that while it's gimmicky, the A&D add on really makes the game a hoot, not to mention gives a nice monster movie mayhem kind of feel to the game. I give it a hearty thumbs up.

Dexter is my favourite of the two, of course!

We then played Carcassonne:H&G, which I like better than classic Carc - in fact, I like almost all of the others better than the classic one. I have the "original" classic Carc where the farmers were scoring 4 pts per city, and then they changed the rule, and then the endless expansions, and I have to come to prefer the elegant simplicity of H&G in comparison.

My daughter came in second in both games, but this was a proud moment because she made all her decisions herself and came in a solid second, all based on her own decisions.

I neglected to mention Glen More last week - Jonathan and I played that after CC:E and Keyflower. I won the rubber match.

This weekend as mentioned I drove my wife to her conference on Thursday night. The Coquihalla highway, which is the main thoroughfare from the Okanagan valley to the lower mainland (as the area including Vancouver is known) was shut due to heavy snow and a major avalanche slide, so we took the longer Transcanada Highway route which took us up and around our destination and what would normally have been about a six hour drive took a touch over eight, and we managed to hit a really nasty chunk of rock that was either from or caused the pothole it was sitting next too which bent the rim of the front tire and gave us a flat.

Thus leading to my first ever changing a tire experience. Yes, I've been driving for thirty years, and have never had cause to change a tire myself. There were two other tire incidents, one was a nail which caused a slow leak and I just took it to the gas station to pump it up and that lasted until the garage, and the other time I had my under 6 month old daughter in the back and as I was pulling out the jack this mechanic in a pick up truck pulled up behind me and said "I see you've got a kid in the back, you take care of her, and I'll deal with this" and moments later was back on my way (hooray for random acts of kindness). Now, the tire was a write off as well, so ironically my two week old barely driven on snow tire had to be replaced. As well as the rim. Such are the adventures we laugh about later.

My daughter and I dealt with the tire issue on Friday morning while my wife was at the conference and then we all went up to Silver Star ski resort where my wonderful ladies skied to their heart's content and I, finally, broke out The Hunters for a long overdue test drive.

I think this game's a real winner. I would have liked a map with the boxes on it, just because I'm a visual kind of person, but the charts work just fine, and there's a fan made one online that could be used for the purpose. It takes longer to play than Nemo's War, which I still consider my favourite solo game, but with The Hunters you can play a single patrol and put it away to pick up later. Indeed, my first solo game is still going as I haven't been sunk yet.

I think it would be a stunningly good iPad game, and it wouldn't take much to program the game engine. Getting the graphics right is always a gamble, but even if all they did was swap from the ship summary screen to the battle screen and let the AI deal with the rest... Hell, I'd take a text only version like the games of yesteryear.

The game is easy to play. That's 90% of the battle with solo games. The game is also a lot of fun. There's the other 10%. I expect I'll be playing this a fair bit more this year.

PBEM:
Still going are...

HIS x1: I think no matter the outcome of this game, my pbem days of this one are over. I know this means that realistically I only get to play this once a year at BGG.Con.

TS ladder game: Dare I say looking good for the Soviets?

UKC x2: I'm overdue with my move to Chris - road trip. Jon - is it you or me up next?

Cuba Libre x2: Say what you will about Cuba Libre being the "easiest" or "most accessible" of the COIN game - it's the one that's hit the table the most, pbem or otherwise. I really want to play A Distant Plain again soon though...

1989 x2: I'm finally caught up. I think.

Otherwise:
I'm long overdue for an overhaul - indeed, a complete re-write - of my life plan. One of the medium term goals that's going to be on it is to simplify my game collection.
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13. Board Game: Age of Empires III: The Age of Discovery [Average Rating:7.57 Overall Rank:133]
Alex H.
Germany
Berlin
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I think I mentioned it briefly on last's weeks list but it rightly belongs on this one.
Played a game of Race for the Galaxy and then Age of Empires III: The Age of Discovery at my FLGS on Monday. It was ok. I'm growing a bit tired of RftG lately. Still like the artwork, still like the fast-paced gameplay. It's just that given the choice, I'd rather play something else nowadays. "Something else" does not refer to AoE3, though. I almost got everyone to play Chaos in the Old World instead but then a fifth player joined in which excluded CitOW (not owning the expansion).
The group included a few great guys who made even the bland AoE enjoyable enough. Nothing memorable, though.
Yesterday I introduced my non-gamer friend who I successfully introduced to Twilight Struggle to Labyrinth: The War on Terror, 2001 – ?. Although we didn't finish, I got him interested enough that I think we'll play it again one of these weeks.
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14. Board Game: Fading Glory [Average Rating:7.53 Unranked] [Average Rating:7.53 Unranked]
Stig Morten
Norway
Kvernaland
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Broke out Fading Glory and soloed the Historical Salamanca scenario. The British took it handily late in the first day thanks to some clever movements that pinned French units into unfavourable attacks. Over half the morale loss from broken and routed French units came on lowodds French attacks. I really like this game and hope the Rising Glory game will get some preorders towards publication.

Also played The Hunters: German U-Boats at War, 1939-43 4 times. 2 of them were my 8 week tourney entry. Sadly I was captured in the Atlantic after my boat was Flooded. I ended my career at 241000tons and briefly held the lead. i am now in third, but more will pass my total. A great way to play the game.
My other 2 playings was the start of a IIC(fan made variant) boat. It holds only 5 torpedos so not alot of punch. After changing to a VIIA in ctober 40 and continuing I am now at 8 patrols. 4 successful81 minelaying) and 3 ships sunk in total. My lowest scoring so far. I just can't seem to get in the shot that sinks the boat. A bunch of damaged boats.

Played Carcassonne with my daughter yesterday. She enjoyed it. Played without the farmer rule. A learning game for my daughter and we will play it more.

Also managed a game of Soviet Dawn where I had a Marginal military defeat. Enjoyable and plays easy. Not very deep, but I don't hink that is intended either. I enjoyed it more than I have done on previous playings.

I'm looking at Flash Point: Fire Rescue as a possible purchase. i think it looks interesting. Anyone have any thoughts on it?

And Olympics is over. Watched a bunch and still enjoy biathlon the most.
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15. Board Game: Null & Nichtig [Average Rating:5.99 Overall Rank:5000]
T. Nomad
Netherlands
Den Bosch
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This week in gaming:

No F2F games played.

PBEM
I am attempting to go as far as I can in Gelato's 1889 without having the slightest idea of what I'm doing. So far I'm a distant 3rd of 5, but not a single one of my gaming instincts is in play: I'm still making moves without any idea of the repercussions. I hope I'm not 'that guy' to the rest of you...yet.

My game of 1989: Dawn of Freedom with Roger is the highlight of my gaming week, both due to the game and the virtual table-mate. I also have a game of it set up on my solo table (I'm preparing to teach it F2F, playing with half-open hands), which I hope to swing through in the next night or two. My last one ended in turn 8 on points in favour of the communist, and took 2 1/4 hours. I dunno if it will get played at all, though...

Acquisitions
...because my colleague (*cough* mule) returned from California with my copy of Cruel Necessity! I'm not sure I have the will power to keep this off the table. Canada Reads begins on Monday, so I'll have a lot of late nights of active brain to deal with.
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Cindy Nowak
United States
Kenosha
Wisconsin
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Hi, everyone. I had meant to stop in earlier during the week but somehow had managed to delete the subscription update link - I blame drugs

Although I am no longer an active member, I do read along each week as Gelato and its members are special part of BGG for me. I will pop in from time to time with an update.

For those who don't have time to click to Roger's link (thanks, Roger!) here is the summary.

On Saturday the 15th, a slip and fall on an icy street while walking caused me to hit the side of a construction pickup and slide underneath, where I was run over by the rear wheel of the truck and then the construction trailer, resulting in a spinal fracture and cord damage at T-8.

I do expect to be wheelchair bound, but there is a slim hope due to an investigational medication that I could continue to regain some measure of sensation lower than mid abdomen.

But I am working hard at therapy and hope to be home in a month.
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