Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Moment of Reflection

It's been a busy week.  Aren't they all?  What can I say? It's pumpkin season.  I've noticed that the standard, low-end grocery stores (around here, that would be the ubiquitous Safeway) tend to dispose of their stock of pumpkins a couple days after Halloween.  Whereas your more hippie-fied, healthy grocery stores -- you know, the kind that carry hemp ice cream and an unusual amount of gluten-free products -- will keep a good supply of pumpkins on hand until Thanksgiving or later.

Having just made a pumpkin pie and finding myself with a bit of leftover pulp, my thoughts naturally turned to that annual revenue generator for Starbucks, the Pumpkin Spice Latte.  Now, I don't really need to frequent Starbucks.  There are already a sufficient number of coffee shops in my town that can actually produce good coffee.  But the thought of a steady supply of $4.50 beverages made on the cheap was too irresistible to, uh... resist.  It turns out to not be that difficult: equal parts sugar and water, mixed with a bit of pumpkin, cinnamon, ginger, cloves and nutmeg produces a nice pumpkin syrup.  The result: throw in some espresso and steamed milk and it's quite drinkable and cheap as heck.

Throw it all together and simmer for a few minutes. Don't forget to strain it through a cheesecloth.

I also tried my hand at making some lox. Or to be precise, gravlax -- Finnish cured salmon.  But I don't plan on turning Chrontendo into a cooking blog, so suffice to say it's pretty simple to make if you have the patience.

And yet, Thanksgiving is just around the corner. What this means for me is endless rounds of shopping, food preparation, cursing because I can't find some particular ingredient, and finally, cooking.  I hope to have Chrontendo Episode 34 done before then, but can promise nothing.  I really would like to step up the production a little bit, maybe by making episodes a little bit shorter.  I also will be posting previews of upcoming episodes on Youtube from time to time, as well as possibly some miscellaneous videos.  I suspect a little something about Capcom's shoot-em-up Legendary Wings will appear before too long.  If you are interested in such things, I guess either subscribe to Chrontendo Youtube channel or just check back occasionally.

On a completely unrelated note, a chat with Pre-Sonic Genesis blogger CJ Lowery the other day made me wonder what the most manly types of alcohol are.  A definitive ranking would be difficult to compile, but after a bit of reflection I assume it looks something like this, in order from "manliest" to "least manly."

Irish Whisky/Scotch
"Real" Rum
Tequilla (straight)
Red Wine
White Wine
Flavored/White Rum
Tequilla cocktails
Red Bull or Jaegermeister based cocktails
Flavored Vodka
Rosé/Blush Wine
"Hard" Lemonades and such
Wine Coolers, spritzers and other travesties.

Theoretically, the most and least manly forms of alcohol.

Obviously, some things have been left out.  Where does Grappa fit in this list?  What about Schnapps?  Absinthe?*  Surely I've forgotten some important drinks in this?

Also, while checking traffic sources, I notices this thread at NeoGaf.  Someone was looking for a complete chronological list of Famicom/NES titles.  I've never seen such a thing online myself, but Chrontendo is partly based on the "Chronological List of Famicom Games" originally found on Wikipedia.  That particular entry has since been deleted, in favor of a non-chronological list.  Also, Nintendo has some PDF files available of US releases, but they do not provide an release exact date, just month and year.  My own list sort of merges the two together, removes the duplicate entries, and adds in some Europe only releases and a few unlicensed titles.

In case anyone needs this information or plans to play along, I've included a link to the official Chrontendo game list in spreadsheet format under "Chrontendo Links."   You should be able to save it an Excel file or some similar format.  Be aware that whoever compiled the Wikipedia list transcribed Japanese game titles in a way that doesn't always match up to other sources such as Gamefaqs, or the names on ROM dumps.  The notes in the rightmost column are from the original Wikipedia editor and I can't guarantee their accuracy.

*This is a difficult call. I read an interview with Marilyn Manson once in which it was noted Mr. Manson was sipping some absinthe.  This indicates it's probably not very manly.  On the other hand, absinthe is used in the Sazerac cocktail, which is tough as hell.


Luke said...

I dunno if I'm alone in this, but I wouldn't mind waiting a bit longer for a longer episode... a new episode of Chrontendo/sega/turbo is always a treat, and by making it shorter, you may feel the need to rush discussing some otherwise interesting games.

Anonymous said...

there is a list of famicom games on wikipedia, you can sort by name, release date and publisher
also you missed out beer, which is certainly different to (yuk) lager!

synt4x said...

I agree with Luke. Take the time it needs to get the episode ready. It can get a bit frustrating to have to wait, but the end result will probably be better so I don't complain.

Some youtube mini-updates could be cool. I imagine them being a bit like your regular posts about the upcoming episodes, and that could work nicely. But it will take more time than just writing a regular post of course.

Oh and gravlax is really fresh and tasty. Cool that people outside of Scandinavia eat that.

And speaking of famicom lists, there is a Swedish website called NESDB which has what I believe to be a complete list of games for Japan, the US and Sweden, complete with release dates and more. Unfortunately it does not seem to have a general PAL list.

Here's a link to the database:

It's in Swedish, but Google translate should do a good job since both English and Swedish are northern germanic languages.

Doctor Sparkle said...

It's not so much that I want to "rush" episodes, as it is that Chrontendo is a project I want to actually finish someday. Due to the unexciting, repetitive nature of some of the games (Bases Loaded II or Final Lap in episode 34, for example), I often feel there isn't that much to say about certain titles. It's not that episodes will be getting much shorter, as I'm trying to make them more concise and more tightly edited.

There are, very roughly speaking, two types of beer: ale and lager. The difference is in the yeast and fermentation. Both are on the list, but since girls tend to tolerate lagers more than ales, I rated ales more manly. On the other hand, bocks are technically lagers and can approach stouts in terms of heaviness.

Nice to see that Wikipedia editors have added sort functions on that list. They should do that with the other console lists like the Super Famicom. And I'll check out that Swedish site, since it looks pretty thorough.

GarrettCRW said...

It's nice to see that CJ's absence from PSG has been productive. ;)

Hasoneable said...

I've been wondering this for a while:

Are you planning to do a Super Chrontendo for the SNES when you're done with this? Or are all of your projects going to be 80's consoles?

Also, episode length is fine. Though to be honest, I could do without the history/bonus segments if it led to episodes more often.

qaylIS aka Nicolas Deußer said...

I like to drink a good glass of Calvados from time to time, a spirit which is made from french cidre. I think it has some points in the manly section, but also it is kinda sophisticated. Normally I am not a big friend of the french, but what they do with apples and wine is not bad...though I prefer the german applewine.
And in my opinion about shorter episodes...I always wonder that you have something to say about a new baseball game, I personally can't stand them, and If I wouldn't know that you say something interesting about them, I would skip these parts in the videos. There are interesting games, and there is...how should I put this...crap. And as long that the crap isn't kusoge, I am not interested.

Doctor Sparkle said...

Calvados and its American cousin, Applejack, are sort of popular with the serious cocktail set. There's approximately 1% chance that either would be be consumed at a Sex in the City viewing party, so I suppose they are pretty manly.

Anonymous said...

Saw this yesterday. Video games and alcohol brought together:

Doctor Sparkle said...

Video game based cocktails is an interesing idea, but... why does every drink have to be made of vodka and blue curacao?