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Subject: GEEK OF THE WEEK: mary weisbeck (sodaklady) rss

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Andrew H
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GEEK OF THE WEEK: mary weisbeck (sodaklady)

profile: http://boardgamegeek.com/user/sodaklady

Geek of the week is an open forum focussed on getting to know our Geek of the Week. Come on the journey of Mary's gaming life as we hitchhike our way across the continent of her personality, catch the express - her train of thaught and take a leisurely drive down memory lane.

Mary, you have promoted train and travel games vocally for some time. What is it about travel or particularly train games that fascinate you?

The highest rated game of those you really don't like so much is Wallenstein. Without any comment yet and having not played it myself yet I have no way of judging why you don't like it. Please explain.

Quite a few of the films you favour and to some degree some of the music are from years gone by. Do you have a favourite period for either forms of entertainment? Is there a particular aspect of film or music which explains your love of some of the less recent choices?

As time goes by and Red Dwarf are both English TV shows. How prevalent are English shows especially comedies where you live. (pay or free to air).

You are one of those legendary people who manage an active BGG life as well as being a supermom. What are the hardeest balancing acts that you have to pull off? What have been some of the most rewarding times for you as a mom? What about the more frustrating times?

A game I know is called two truths and a lie.
You tell us three things about yourself. Two are true one is a lie. We have to guess which is false. (hints: Try to make your truths the most unexpected things about yourself to trick us. The lie can be very close to the truth.)
Don't tell us which one is the lie til the end of the week.
Happy Geek of the Week week geek.

You can read up on previous Geeks of the Week using this handy list of forum threads:

http://www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/84208

Though they are not the active Geek of the Week forums they can have new questions and answers posted. It is a good idea for previous GotWs to add their own link to their forum in their personal profile too.
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David Seddon
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Congrats on becoming Geek of the Week…nice to see another female get the chance.


Fifteen questions some of which are a bit heavier – but I like hearing answers to those sort of things as I think they’re revealing of other aspects of a person’s thinking.

As usual the first 10 are general: 5 are games related and 5 aren’t. The last 5 are just a bunch of stuff that I’m interested in.

1. Do you enjoy Party Games once in a while? If so which ones have done it for you? Do any deserve to be in the top 100 here?
2. You’ve played and liked Wings of War and Memoir. Are there any wargames that you are keen to play that you haven't yet got to - and why those ones?
3. Which 5 games would you say were the most pure fun you ever played? You can define “fun” in anyway you feel is right.
4. Fjords is a game which appeals to me in terms of theme, at least. You seem to really like it. What 5 qualities has it got to make me buy it? (not an empty question – you may persuade me!)
5. Are there any kids games that deserve to be rated higher than they are and why? Are there any you’d like to try out and maybe bring the kid out in yourself?
6. Have you ever been to Europe? If so, which place was the most interesting, if not where would you most like to go (apart from Essen).
7. Should the rapidly melting glaciers of Greenland keep us all awake at night? …Where do you stand on the whole global warming issue? Is it the biggest problem facing mankind which some folks are choosing to ignore at their peril or a colossal red-herring that gets way too much media-coverage?
8. What are the best 10 albums of all time?
9. Which three characteristics in a person do you most like and dislike?
10. Who were your 5 greatest people of the 20th Century? Name 10 if you really want to.
11. Is there any type of comment on BGG that really tends to get you mad?
12. Do you ever feel that Euro game design is getting a bit stale these days? Have you ever groaned either aloud or inside when you’ve seen yet another game with the same mechanic you’ve played scores of times already? Name names if you like!
13. Which films and songs bring a tear to your eye?
14. When have you been most scared in your life? I mean really scared?
15. Of all the places in the USA that I have not visited, the one I am most keen to see is Mount Rushmore. I take it you've seen it. Is it as impressive as I imagine? Didn't they do another set of heads somewhere else after the first batch?
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Tom "Snicker Daddy" Pancoast
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Congrats Mary! Couldn't have happened to a nicer Geek!
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Hi Mary! I'm so glad you are geek of the week. I don't have any questions but I'm looking forward to reading this thread. I try to keep up to date on your blog.
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Ann De Haes
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Hello Mary. Congrats on you becoming geek of the week! I will first see what you answer to the other questions, and then I might be tempted to ask a question myself.

Ann
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Laura Meyer
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I have never crossed your path before but I am looking forward to getting to know you! Congrats on GOTW!
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Mary Weisbeck
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Thanks for the chance to be interrogated by such brilliant people--I'm sure my brain is going to be very worn out by the end of the week. Need coffee.... I hope you all won't be disappointed.

Quote:
Mary, you have promoted train and travel games vocally for some time. What is it about travel or particularly train games that fascinate you?


I think what appeals to me in train (and road) games is the building of the usable board space. It's inherent in most rail/road games that it will be a totally different game each time you play since you can't possibly cover the whole board so you have to *choose* how the board will be set up.

This is why I also love Magna Grecia and Through the Desert, and why I will be getting Hacienda when I can.

Quote:
The highest rated game of those you really don't like so much is Wallenstein. Without any comment yet and having not played it myself yet I have no way of judging why you don't like it. Please explain.


At first I really enjoyed Wallenstein because I think the planning of actions is a great mechanic, but after a couple of games online I found that it drove me crazy trying to balance what I *needed* (grain and money) against what I *wanted* (building, reinforcements and expansion) and never really being able to get from here to there the way I wanted. Then after all that agonizing, to have it shot to hell by the dice tower in some unbelieveable bit of chance.

Quote:
Quite a few of the films you favour and to some degree some of the music are from years gone by. Do you have a favourite period for either forms of entertainment? Is there a particular aspect of film or music which explains your love of some of the less recent choices?


I don't think the time period for movies is as important as the content. I like a deep story that is well-told and well-acted rather than just an excuse to use special effects. I also don't like grade-school humor which leaves out a whole gender of movies such as "Dumb and Dumber" and "Ace Ventura". As for music, "I love Rock and Roll" (sing along, gang). I want to be able to hear ALL of the instruments, not just guitars and drums, but I also want a good beat (I'll give it an 8, Dick). Does that make sense?

Quote:
As Time Goes By and Red Dwarf are both English TV shows. How prevalent are English shows especially comedies where you live. (pay or free to air).


Our PBS station shows both of those shows on a weekly basis, along with Waiting for God and, of course, Are You Being Served? There's something about the English sense of humor that doesn't really translate well to American culture, as proven by Coupling, which is a brilliantly funny comedy which did not even spark a giggle when they re-made it over here.

Quote:
You are one of those legendary people who manage an active BGG life as well as being a supermom. What are the hardeest balancing acts that you have to pull off? What have been some of the most rewarding times for you as a mom? What about the more frustrating times?


Ahh, you give me way more credit than I deserve, Andrew, since my children are 22 and 27 but my daughter, Cori, does still live at home and at times is as much trouble as a 15-year-old. I think the hardest part about being a stay-at-home is hearing everyone else's problems. There's been days when I'm hit from 3 sides with problems and complaints and there's not a lot I can do to fix them except offer what advice I can. The reward for years of service is that my children have both grown up to be hard-working, responsible, sensible and helpful adults. You can't ask for more than that! I hope that answers all those questions in one fell swoop.

Quote:
A game I know is called two truths and a lie.
You tell us three things about yourself. Two are true one is a lie. We have to guess which is false.


Would you believe...
I've snorkled in the Med.
I've looked for the Loch Ness Monster.
I've surfed in the Bristol Channel.
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Morgan Dontanville
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Ok Mary,

Here's my standard question, what song would you like played at your funeral?

Also, how much is a cat worth?

You obviously like abstract games, which makes me even more curious what is your favorite theme.

What theme do you wish were made into a game?

What was the game that made you realize you like abstracts?
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Hi Mary, please fill in the blanks for us:

I would love to play this game: ________________
with these ACTORS: _____________________________
and here's why: ________________________________


I would love to play this game: _________________
with these MUSICIANS: ___________________________
and here's why: _________________________________


I would love to play this game: _________________
with these FICTIONAL CHARACTERS: ________________
and here's why: _________________________________


and finally...

If I were a game piece, I would be ____________________


Thanksabunch!
-Eddy Bee

"Once a gamer, always a gamer!"
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Hi Mary!

Nice to see you - we've missed your posts here on BGG.

I'll start with an easy question - what's the latest game you played?

And what will the next one be?
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Mary -- Great to see you are Geek of the Week. You have earned the recognition, and I enjoy conversing with you frequently and reading your weekly blogs. Happy Holiday Season!

Do you do much Christmas baking, and if so, what are your favorite items? Any game parts included in them accidentally?
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Hi Mary!

1) Do you have any semi-embarrassing photos of yourself within googling distance that Morgan could post on here?

2) In a hobby where the majority of players (at least in the US) are 30ish guys, you seem to stand out a bit. I get the sense that boardgaming is actually a fairly recent hobby for you. Could you tell us how you got involved with: 1) gaming, 2) the Geek in particular, 3) and what hobbies you did prior to this? If gaming scratches a certain itch for you, what did you do previously that might have been a substitute?

3) What would be your ideal meal...no worries about calories or cost?

4) What do your children do?

5) I just wanted to say that I respect you a lot. I think boardgaming keeps the mind sharp and yours is among the sharpest.
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Hi Mary! Congrats on the GOTW. I'm confident that we'll be getting excellent responses and good content from the Q&A to follow.

And now onto the questions:

1. Prior to us "meeting" at boite a jeux, I remember you mostly for your fondness for and ambassadorship of certain games, namely Magna Grecia and Trias. Are there any games from the last year or so that you think are somewhat overlooked (similar to MG and Trias)? Are there any games you have high hopes for?

2. I'm curious about how your family reacts to this hobby of yours. While they haven't been blown over like you have, your children certainly seem willing to play with you every so often. How would you describe their enthusiasm for the hobby in general? How do they react to your enthusiasm?

3. Any sage advice to new fathers out there?
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It couldn't have happened to a nicer Mary from South Dakota with a cat avatar!!!

A couple questions:

1) If for some reason you were never able to boardgame again, what do you think would fill the vacuum?

2) If suddenly you were free from all other responsibilities and could boardgame as often as your heart desired, how much gaming would you do?

3) What game has been the biggest "pleasant surprise" for you -- a game you didn't really think you'd like that you've really come to appreciate?

I look forward to doing some online gaming against you, and sharing in more of the friendly chit chat and banter among like-minded gamers.
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"Chit Chat", what a great name for a gaming blog! Surely someone has used that before now....
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Morgan Dontanville
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This is not Mary:




Notice the cat at the top of the picture, is this Mary?:

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1. Are you quite contrary?

2. How does your garden grow?
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Hi Mary,

Firstly, and I am suprised Chaddyboy hasn't already said this:

Trias! Trias! Trias!, which I believe I should follow up with Hansa Hansa Hansa!

We have both these games thanks to you. I totally suck at Trias by the way, I always come last in the four player games we play.

What other games will I and other members of the BGG public be purchasing thanks to your mind control?

Your number of posts here at BGG has dropped off recently, is that because you are waiting for the next Hansa to come along or because you are spending that time on the other things possibly including the blog?
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Hi Mary,

Now for the more regular questions.

I try to remember to ask each Geek of the Week these gaming related questions so to start with, here's the ever so slightly modified GeekSpeak BoardGameSpeak Hook questions for you:
Favourite game for d10-2 players
Favourite game for d10-3 players
Favourite game for d10-4 players
Favourite game for d10-5 players
Favourite game for d10-6 players
Favourite game for d10-7 or more players (and you may choose a Party Game here although I wouldn't meeple - my other confession is that I would be hard pressed to list just one game for most of the above)

Also Word Association Football , I will list a word and you list a game or games that you associate with it. If you like you can expand and tell us if you like it/them or hate it/them and possibly why. Mostly, if not exactly, the same list as before.

Space ships
Witches
Trains
Transport (may include trains)
Workers (paid or otherwise)
Trading
Building
Pink
Theme
Ships
Money
Purple
Government
Vampires
Infrastructure
Dice
Dinosaurs
Gemstones
Dragons
Beer
Wands

And last but not least, what are the last five games that you have played?
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Mary Weisbeck
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Admiral Fisher wrote:


1. Do you enjoy Party Games once in a while? If so which ones have done it for you? Do any deserve to be in the top 100 here?
2. You’ve played and liked Wings of War and Memoir. Are there any wargames that you are keen to play that you haven't yet got to - and why those ones?
3. Which 5 games would you say were the most pure fun you ever played? You can define “fun” in anyway you feel is right.
4. Fjords is a game which appeals to me in terms of theme, at least. You seem to really like it. What 5 qualities has it got to make me buy it? (not an empty question – you may persuade me!)
5. Are there any kids games that deserve to be rated higher than they are and why? Are there any you’d like to try out and maybe bring the kid out in yourself?
6. Have you ever been to Europe? If so, which place was the most interesting, if not where would you most like to go (apart from Essen).
7. Should the rapidly melting glaciers of Greenland keep us all awake at night? …Where do you stand on the whole global warming issue? Is it the biggest problem facing mankind which some folks are choosing to ignore at their peril or a colossal red-herring that gets way too much media-coverage?
8. What are the best 10 albums of all time?
9. Which three characteristics in a person do you most like and dislike?
10. Who were your 5 greatest people of the 20th Century? Name 10 if you really want to.
11. Is there any type of comment on BGG that really tends to get you mad?
12. Do you ever feel that Euro game design is getting a bit stale these days? Have you ever groaned either aloud or inside when you’ve seen yet another game with the same mechanic you’ve played scores of times already? Name names if you like!
13. Which films and songs bring a tear to your eye?
14. When have you been most scared in your life? I mean really scared?
15. Of all the places in the USA that I have not visited, the one I am most keen to see is Mount Rushmore. I take it you've seen it. Is it as impressive as I imagine? Didn't they do another set of heads somewhere else after the first batch?


1. I haven't played any party games, though if I were to try one I'd like to try Apples to Apples. It sounds like it would be fun while not becoming repetitive too soon.

2. I'm anxiously awaiting my copy of Command and Colors: Ancients. The basic game is Memoir-like so it will be familiar (and it shouldn't be too hard to get my husband to play with me), but I'm hoping that there's a little more strategy to it. I also haven't played (but own) Crusader Rex. This is my first block game so it's very different from the other games I've played while not being overwhelming rule-wise. I wanted something that had plenty of strategy and tactics while also keeping to a small-ish rule set. So far, there just hasn't been time to play it.

3. Fun is definitely a hard thing to define. I would say that fun to me are games where there's a lot of talking and laughing while still having an amount of tension in your decisions. So...
Coloretto and 6 Nimmt, which have a lot of laughing and teasing and less tension.
Blokus, which I find I don't have to think too hard about. It seems to work because I win a fair amount of time.
Carcassonne, either without expansions or the Hunters & Gatherers.
Through the Desert--I know many find it boring and "dry", but I don't.

4. Fjords: it plays quickly with almost no set-up.
Map-building. There's something about watching the landscape build that always satisfies me.
Variability--the map is always very different.
Depth. Some will say there isn't much game here and complain about the many times they have no choice of tile placement. I say that *that* is also part of the play since those tiles become part of your future choices (and your opponent's, which you have to take into account as well).
The fifth thing is simply that I beat my husband at it every time!

5. I don't really know any kid's games, unless you mean the traditional American games. Those I think are only good for kids and for parents who love to spend time with their kids no matter what they're doing.

6. Yes, I've been to Europe but I refuse to answer on the grounds that it will influence my Two Truths and A Lie.

7. I'm not sure if global warming is the biggest problem facing mankind but I do think that the Earth has a balance that it needs to keep and is *trying* to keep as we go about our selfish ways. How many generations away does serious trouble have to be before it's close enough to make us change? And will it then be too late?

8. Egads! Ten best albums *of all times*!?
Nope, I couldn't even begin to narrow down all the music (of which I know so very little) to the 10 best. There are albums I've listened to many, many times but that doesn't mean that I'll always love them or that you should run right out and track them down because you will love them, too.

9. Three characteristics I most like: honesty, humor and intelligence.
Three I most dislike: untrustworthiness, arrogance, self-righteousness.

10. Five greatest people of the 20th Century. This makes my brain hurt, David! I'd like to pass on this one for now and come back to it when I have more time. I'm trying to finish this before game night starts!

11. There isn't any particular *type* of comment that makes me mad, rather it's the way a comment is made. I see a lot of rudeness when it's not called for, especially since there is time to think about any comment being made and word it so as not to be nasty.

12. I don't think Euro-game design is getting stale. The different mix of mechanics or a slight twist on something old can still make for a unique game which plays differently from any of the games in your collection.

13. Patriotic songs and hymns choke me up. I can't sing them.
The first movie I thought of was The Poseidon Adventure--when Ernest Borgnine loses his Linda, the only person in the whole world that he ever loved. That gets me everytime. Another one is the verse spoken at the end of Sahara (the one with James Belushi):

They shall not grow old as we who are left grow old.
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
WE WILL REMEMBER THEM.

14. Most scared? That's tough since I scare almost as easily as I cry. Once was a car accident when I was driving on a 4-lane divided highway. My husband was asleep in the passenger seat, Chris was about 4 and Cori was a baby in her car seat. A pick-up truck pulled out in front of me to cross my 2 lanes of traffic; for some reason he didn't see us. You have a split second to realize that you can't go left or right--all you can do is stomp on the brake and hope. Luckily, we were all o.k. but the rear wheel was removed from that man's truck!

15. Mt. Rushmore is indeed very impressive, especially if you go into the theater and watch a presentation of the work it took to create it. After that, you should go to the Crazy Horse Memorial that is still being carved and learn how much more massive it is than Mt. Rushmore. As far as I know, there is not another set of heads so maybe Crazy Horse is what you were thinking of.
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Mary Weisbeck
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sisteray wrote:
Ok Mary,

Here's my standard question, what song would you like played at your funeral?

Also, how much is a cat worth?

You obviously like abstract games, which makes me even more curious what is your favorite theme.

What theme do you wish were made into a game?

What was the game that made you realize you like abstracts?


I'm not having a funeral, Morgan. Just stick me in a box and set it on fire. O.k., how about "I Hope You Dance"? A wish for the people I leave behind.

A cat is worth every relaxed breath you take while you're holding them and listening to them purr.

I like abstract games!? Who told you that? Sure, I like Blokus and DVONN but that's all. Really. Maybe YINSH--but I haven't played it enough to be sure. As for theme, I can't really think of one that stands out for me. I judge a game by how it all fits together, not what it's supposed to stand for.

A theme for a game (that hasn't already been done and done and done)? How about "superstition"? Is there a game that centers around the fearful superstitions that people have like walking under ladders, stepping on cracks or black cats crossing your path?
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Mary Weisbeck
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Hi Mary, please fill in the blanks for us:

I would love to play this game: Hansa
with these ACTORS: Tom Hanks, Harrison Ford and William Shatner
and here's why: They all seem to be intelligent with a good sense of humor.

I would love to play this game: _________________
with these MUSICIANS: ___________________________
and here's why: I have to admit, I just don't know musicians.


I would love to play this game: Torres
with these FICTIONAL CHARACTERS: The Queen's Own Herald Talia (from Mercedes Lackey's Valdemar books), Stephanie Plum (from Janet Ivanovich's books) and Miss Jane Marple (Agatha Christy's famous sleuth)
and here's why: They are interesting, self-sufficient female characters with brains.


and finally...

If I were a game piece, I would be the Buddha from Samurai.


Thanksabunch!
-Eddy Bee
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Mary Weisbeck
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melissa wrote:
Hi Mary!

Nice to see you - we've missed your posts here on BGG.

I'll start with an easy question - what's the latest game you played?

And what will the next one be?


Ahh, and easy one. I just finished game night and the last game we played was Taj Mahal. I won by 2 points, btw.

The next one, if I get very lucky, will be Flandern 1302. I just got it and would like to try it out.

gamesgrandpa wrote:
Do you do much Christmas baking, and if so, what are your favorite items? Any game parts included in them accidentally?


I used to do more baking but as the kids have gotten older (and so have I), I do less. I always bake cookies, especially a couple recipes handed down from my grandmother. I also like to make a coffee cake ring with a cranberry filling. And no, no pieces have gotten into the food but I *have* found Age of Steam track pieces under the refrigerator when I moved it. Cats! I swear I don't know how they got there.
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cornjob wrote:
Hi Mary!

1) Do you have any semi-embarrassing photos of yourself within googling distance that Morgan could post on here?

2) In a hobby where the majority of players (at least in the US) are 30ish guys, you seem to stand out a bit. I get the sense that boardgaming is actually a fairly recent hobby for you. Could you tell us how you got involved with: 1) gaming, 2) the Geek in particular, 3) and what hobbies you did prior to this? If gaming scratches a certain itch for you, what did you do previously that might have been a substitute?

3) What would be your ideal meal...no worries about calories or cost?

4) What do your children do?

5) I just wanted to say that I respect you a lot. I think boardgaming keeps the mind sharp and yours is among the sharpest.


1) Chester, ALL the photos of myself are semi-embarrassing! But Morgan shall never get his hands on them. shake

2) I found designer games a short 2 years ago. While looking for something different as our traditional Christmas game, I found one called Lost Cities which sounded like fun with the different expeditions and managing your money. Boy, was I surprised when it turned out to be a simple card game and a tiny board that just held the cards! But we were blown away by how tough it was (comparatively speaking) and the next year I went looking for more games like that. I found FunAgain games and, of course, BGG.

Before boardgaming, I did all kinds of needlework from crewel and counted cross-stitch to knitting and crocheting. There's a definite satisfaction in seeing a blank piece of cloth turn into a beautiful picture, or a few skeins of yarn become a warm, comfortable afghan.

3) I have very simple tastes in food, Chester. I don't like meat--it's only useful for making gravy. I'd have to go with a Chinese meal of crab rangoon, vegetable fried rice, cashew chicken, and sweat and sour shrimp. Second place would go to lasagna and a salad with Italian dressing.

4) My son, Chris, is the head mechanic for our Harley-Davidson shop. He goes to Daytona's bike week almost every year and works but he also gets to see some races.

Corissa is a call-taker for G.E.'s service center. If you've ever needed maintenance on your electronics or large appliances, you may actually have talked to her.

5) Thank you, Chester. That means a lot to me.
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Morgan Dontanville
United States
Charlottesville
VA
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sodaklady wrote:
I also like to make a coffee cake ring with a cranberry filling.


YUM!
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