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Living like an Irvanian in a universe filled with Dweasels

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Questioning my identity

March 8, 2007

[Note from Dave: For some reason, this particular article generates a great deal of spam comments. I delete them all before theyíre posted, of course, but for reasons that are beyond me this piece attracts spammers like transvestites to a Marilyn Monroe convention. Therefore Iíve disallowed comments on this article, just to cut down on the amount of spam I have to delete daily.]

Last night I saw an ad on TV for a new movie about the 300 Spartan dudes at Thermopylae, entitled, I think, "300 Spartan Dudes at Thermopylae". Or something like that. Then something happened that somehow disturbed me: I realized I wasnít really interested in seeing the movie.

I thought to myself: What kind of wargamer am I? What kind of military history buff am I? Hereís a new movie about some historical battle, of obvious interest to wargamers, with lots of great special effects and fight scenes. I should be looking forward to seeing the movie. Instead, Iím more interested in trying to figure out the structure and symbolism of Aeschylusí early dramas.

(For some reason, I donít remember seeing any Ancient Greek Dramatist army lists in DBA or DBM or Armati or WRG 7th or any of the other Ancients wargame rulesets. Thatís too bad, Iíll bet my Aristophanes army could clean some serious clock if it were up against a Sophocles or Euripides army. ďSpears forward, my Frogs! Advance to contact! Ribbet like you mean it!Ē)

But anyway. Since that lame Pearl Harbor movie came out a few years ago I havenít seen a lot of the newer war movies. I saw Troy and Alexander but I didnít see Alamo or Master & Commander or a bunch of the others. I just havenít been interested. Thatís got me thinking: Am I really a wargamer? Any real wargamer would feel obligated to see each and every one of these movies, preferably several times.

This is an interesting point, because several of the main characters in my first book find themselves questioning their identities, what they expect of themselves and what society expects of them. (ĒAre we not Dweasels?Ē ďAre we not Bad Days?Ē)

Am I getting jaded, or am I just being a normal Bad Day?

Whichever, I feel a new set of house rules for DBA coming onÖ


Brandon Musler left this comment:

First, if youíve ever read any Patrick OíBrian see ĎMaster and Commander.í Itís very good. If you havenít read OíBrian and youíre designing Age of Sail games, youíre nuts.

As for the rest, none of it means you arenít a wargamer. It means youíre maturing to taste and discretion and not being a unreflective wargamer. This may make you some enemies in the wargaming community, but you wonít be able to help it. It will help your writing too. (That isnít meant as a veiled criticism. Iíve never read your nonwargaming prose but many wargamers read and write dreck exclusively.)

To which I replied:

I read a couple of the OíBrian books. They didnít float my boat, no pun intended. As naval history stuff they were great, but as literature (meaning, in this case, ďgood writing styleĒ) I didnít think they were very good. Iíll probably see the movie anyway when I get a chance.

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March 2007 articles
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The content on this page was written: March 8, 2007
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