Tuesday, 29 September 2015

August Resume & Contributors

Hello Warriors,

August Resume & Contributors is here at last, where I write what this one been up to and complain about "mein kampfs"! And I warn you, its a long article, been devouring books in English and I'm quickly becoming more fluid with this language. Also, my PC is "motor kaput" currently and Jingles is recording videos at the moment which means, this page is the only thing I can talk to right now.

Anyways, RSR is 6 months old!

In the first half of August nothing really happened, all normal as usual, wake up and be greeted by the cats who always come close and wait religiously to be petted as soon as I start doing the first slow stretches inside my blanket cocoon. I get up, feed the Mistresses of Doom, make some coffee (or Jingles makes me some, bless him, he's great!), work for the rest of the day and prepare stuff for what is to come.

After invitation, spent a couple hours in the Fractured Space studio where I got to meet their team and James Brooksby the CEO who is a very nice and down to Earth lad. Really enjoyed seeing on what and how they were working on the game, which is amazing. And also on how much of a geek heaven the studio is, they have an amazing collection of figures, board games and videogames! For those who never heard of this game, its a PVP oriented Sci-fi game where you pilot ships, each with very different abilities to fight other players, capture resources and then finally take control of the entire map.
Been playing Fractured Space since then, it has done me good to keep my mind away from tanks.
Oh and by the way, I have to thank James Brooksby for the Attack Wing Star Trek ships he gifted, I will be placing them around my Borg cube once I manage to light it up (livestream lair decoration).

On 15 August gathered with the Friends of The Tank Museum and Ed Francis. Don't think I ever mentioned them here before, for those unaware its a paid membership group (not expensive!) who receives extra benefits for helping and supporting The Tank Museum. Click on the link above for more information, its worth. :)
We went to visit REME Bordon, who had a little bit of everything, mostly ARVs but also a couple tanks, trucks, etc. Sadly the place is going to close and because we were the last allowed in our host was a good sport and gave us unlimited access to their entire collection.

It was nice that for the first time in the UK I was allowed around militaria without someone breathing on my neck with health & safety rules. I don't mind a H&S brief before getting my hands dirty but it does get tiring when someone follows you and keeps on repeating "watch your step", "mind the gap", "careful with your head", "here hold my hand", *peeks on your WC stall* "Make sure you clean your butt thoroughly!"... ok, I've exaggerated on that last one!
Four months in the UK and this has been the the only thing I'm still struggling to adapt to. I understand that people are just doing their jobs and are annoyed as I am but noticed that the being a woman conundrum makes things worse. Gladly, been learning to be let off easy, if I'm not given a brief then will give it instead to my assigned babysitter by kindly explaining "Look, I understand that this is not a amusement park and these are machines made to kill people, will be careful and please treat me like a dude, would be very nice if you did, I'm no damsel in distress!" In short words, if you are a woman who is starting to be around tanks make yourself look like a tank pro and a lesbian, the manly type, to ward off the assigned babysitter-dude!

Just Churchilling...

Was a very pleasant and enriching day, got to familiarize and explore the inside of so many vehicles!
Also apparently earned respect points among real tankers Ive been meeting with after getting stuck in a Centurion ARV Mk II but there is nothing glorious about this story! This one, very "smart" as usual after inspecting the driver's compartment, which by the way is the most comfortable seat ever, seriously, even more comfy than a expensive computer chair or car seat! Whoever drove it, he had it good! Climbed to the top and saw a very tantalizing Commander's hatch and dropped down through it without thinking much, when I was done and decided to get out (remind that I'm a short lass) looked up to the hatch and down searching for some footing and uh...oh...
The vehicle has no footing to get out, could reach the Commander's hatch with my hands but had no space to pull my body through, the escape hatch in the back was the only alternative. Opened it and curses! The engine bay is open!

 Ed Francis, who was on the vehicle at the time having a conversation with another lad started hearing scrabbling noises inside the Centurion ARV and his curiosity piqued, he found me hanging by half on the escape hatch, with no footing inside and trying to not fall into the engine bay on the outside. Laughing, he offered help but overrun with pride ("I refuse to be damsel in distress!"- Kept telling myself) denied the offer, he snatched my camera and had fun capturing the moment.

At least he was a good friend and offered dropping bread down the hole once a week if I didn't get out.

It was nice to meet the other "Friends", Ed and I had a wholly engrossing conversation with one gentleman in particular, a engineer who is restoring a tank on his own and went there to take some measurements of a model, its amazing what you can learn from real knowledgeable people!

Hum, talking about "knowledgeable people"... You know what rustles my jimmies? People who think they know more than others and make themselves look like scum sucking, lying, weasel minded smegheads to those around.

Had the opportunity to be inside a Chieftain Mk XI, which by the way, I was the only one authorized. The REME Bordon host kindly authorized access to the tank after Ed asked him so I could start familiarizing myself with the insides of real tanks, note, this was my first time inside a MBT! I immediately started making the best of it, exploring and making questions like a 3 year old to be assured of everything. Its preferable asking to someone who has the knowledge than making a wrong assumption of things and because will be driving tanks in the future, want to be sure of everything while absorbing as much information as possible. Its something I've been taking very serious after accepting the offer.

The smeghead in particular, climbed up the tank without authorization with his girlfriend, who he clearly dragged there (her face wasn't the one of amusement) and started chuckling at every question I made. This is the exact type of person I've been told someone like David Fletcher would...

The interior condition of this Chieftain Mk XI unfortunately wasn't the best whatsoever and although I'm a newbie in real tank matters, do know very well what asbestos is supposed to look like, something I became familiarized with way before I got to be in this type of vehicles just like I learned trigger discipline before ever got my hands on a gun/rifle! Like Chris Hadfield, the first Canadian Commander of the International Space Station wrote on his "An astronaut guide to life on Earth" book I'm the type of person who likes to acquire information for the "Just in case".
Dust particles started lifting in the MBT and the panel I spotted that had asbestos didn't looked very good, no longer felt comfortable inside and said to Ed: "Look there is asbestos inside and things are getting dusty, its not safe" after Ed saw what I was talking about he agreed and I got out. The smeghead, thinking I was just a girl afraid of getting dirty chuckled once more and got in the tank while rummaging and lifting dust like a pig searching for truffles. I just walked away with this in my mind "I bet you wont be chuckling the day you get mesothelioma on your testicles..."
Its just sad when one's ego can get them hurt, my mom, a badass who is way sharper with words commented "Its called natural selection, my dear". She is right.

On the Chieftain Mk XI. This photo is the reason I decided to get my hair shorter as its not very handy around tanks.

I'm very blessed to be surrounded by historians and real tank connoisseurs, been learning a great deal from them and on my own but would never act like a prick towards someone who just started getting into tanks and I mean real ones, not just the pixelated that we play in games.

Often look up to David Fletcher, who I admire and have categorized as the epitome of tank knowledge and realize how far I am from anything close but... I am so, so much eager to learn! And hey, even he can get wrong, it just demonstrates how much about the subject there is!

And it just crossed my mind, on how this man is respected, how I never heard him boasting about himself and how he doesn't need a teleprompter to talk about tanks. Even on his "Tank Chats" series he very short and awkwardly presented himself once, and that was it. This is how you separate the good from the loot. I'm not throwing "shade" at anyone in particular here but there is far too many nowadays calling themselves tank gurus and specialists who are incapable or saying something without a teleprompter that is crammed with wikipedia copy-pasta.

"Any man who must say, "I am the king" is no true king." - Tywin Lannister

Is just a matter of time that I meet my favorite tank story teller Grandpa and people close to him have said that when someone that wants his attention is presented, he calculates top to bottom, with his "x-ray vision" and "I've walked far too long on this planet to waste my time" powers. If there is one person who will know the difference between someone who "Hey its a tank it makes pew pew!" and someone who really wants to learn, its him. I should be okay but this actually makes me feel anxious... want to please the tank senpai and become kōhai!

View from the suite in New York.

And talking about feeling anxious, oh boy...On the 20 August got out of Europe for the first time and spent a vacation week in Manhattan, 'Merica with The Mighty Jingles.
Because we were staying in a expensive area and had posh places to visit I was required to scrub up before the travel.
We went to the shopping center, supposedly to just have some food but he decided suddenly to "kill 2 bunnies with one stick" and took me shopping. I'm the type of woman who despises going shopping and who has spent far too much time with machines, sports and geekery. Even as a little girl, the only reason I owned Barbies was because my "Biker Rats" and G.I. Joes needed some "hoes" (I apologize for the word but couldn't miss such a poetic opportunity!) I had completely disconnected from my feminine side...

As I was being presented with dresses, skirts, and pink (oh my lord, pink! *cringe*) my brain overloaded and started having a panic attack, made a bad excuse and rushed out the store we're in. Needed a moment to regain logic and said to myself "You agreed to go and this is a step required. If you don't do this for yourself, at least do it for him". Jingles kept on insisting on a couple dresses that I believed would make me look like a very British wooden board on her 50s but resigned myself to it all. Took the dresses to the dressing room. I put the first one on, never looking at the mirror, feeling like a defeated cat, after all the zippers were up I lift my face to the mirror and...Wait a minute!
"I don't know who you are lady and where those curves just came from but me like it! Woof! Woof!"

Sneaked around the corner from the dressing room with a smirk and asked Jingles, "Do you have more of those brilliant fashion advice's?" His eyes widened.

Shy, waiting to get my long hair cut...

Before the vacation some of my North American livestream viewers begged me to not misjudge their country from what I would experience in New York but this one has lived once in a touristic area for nearly a decade and knows how to filter the tourists out and enjoyed what I saw.

Usually I avoid big cities because people tend to act like complete jerks and things are way too messy and noisy but in New York saw kindness where less expected and the city is busy yes but orderly and noisy in a vibrant living way, I found myself wanting to live there.

Jingles and I went on a geek crusade on this vacation.
At Times Square we visited the biggest Toys "R" Us in the world. The shop was some worthy selling items but I got out with 3 simple mini figures, a Gorn from Star Trek, Mr. Hamm from Toy Story and a Cinema Gremlin.
In the upper floor, they have arcade games where you can collect tickets to redeem a prize and I was determined to get something for him, searched around for a machine that would require real skill, something that would need fast reflexes (this one had her reflexes trained while competing on athletics) and found just what wanted. He handed me all the coins and after calculating how fast the arcade machine computed information started acing bonus after bonus levels. At the end, I stand gloriously while the machine just kept on spitting tickets for a couple minutes. Jingles got a dinosaur toy.

Times Square.

We also went to the Midtown Comics and my goodness! Its a paradise! They have a little bit of everything and felt like a kid in a candy store. While browsing their comic book selection found myself giving a Star Trek lecture to other fellow geeks and a staff worker and went as far as speaking Klingon! Couldn't go away without a Spock and Worf bust figures and a DC Comics Catwoman bombshell Satin Robe!
Catwoman Bombshell Satin Robe
Catwoman Bombshell Satin Robe
Catwoman Bombshell Satin Robe
Catwoman Bombshell Satin Robejhghjggggggggghhhhhhhhhhh
Catwoman Bombshell Satin Robe

We spent some time away in New Jersey,  and visited Jay & Silent Bob's Secret Stash Comic Book store where the "Comic Book Men" show is recorded, except for Kevin Smith all the cast was accounted for. Jingles completely fangirled like never had seen, I almost started giving some distance away like "I do not know this man"! Also one of the cast, Ming Chen didn't made things easier while eyeing me up, kept thinking "aww, not this again! It was enough when I caught Sylvester McCoy looking at my derriere at ComicCon London while signing autographs!"
This store has a very peculiar taste, these guys sell old school comics and figures, don't expect to find much of Star Trek/Wars or Tomb Raider there. I still managed to get out with a Star Trek "Planet of the Apes" (The Primate Directive) and Watchmen comics although.

I love how North Americans embrace the geek side! (See what I did there?) Numerous times I got stopped on the middle of the streets by complete strangers who just wanted to compliment my Batman bag, or my attire (DC Batgirl, Spock, etc shirts) and ask where I got it. This never ever happened over here in EU and I find it... fascinating.

At Katz's Delicatessen, the place where the scene Sally from "When Harry Met Sally" faked an orgasm.

I also love how the food in the US plays mind games with you! Contrary to EU small portions, NA portions after a while are like a bully!

NA Food: "You cant eat me!"
Rita: "Yes I can, shut up!" 
NA Food: "Look at all these fatty bits, bet you wont handle it"
Rita: "Oh lord! Eating Hamster mode is required! Activate!"
NA Food: "I see the will is strong on you, European Padawan! But you still have the other sandwich half to finish, bet you cant..."
Rita: "I can and I will! Super Sayan Eating Hamster transformation! 
NA Food: *Shrieksss* "Who are you little girl! Your eating levels are over 9000! No! Stop it! You cant! How is this possible!

Rita swallows the last chunk of food defeating NA Food and rolls her way out...

And talking about food in the US, what the hell is going on with pet stores/veterinary clinics right next to Asian food places? I don't want to stereotype here, but every time I saw these, they were together!
United States 15/10 will visit again.

And what Rita does after arriving from another continent? She takes a rest right? Wrong!
Two days after being back in the UK I flew once more to Czech Republic! Which, I will be writing on the next Resume & Contributors article!

Finished reading "The Desert Spear" from Peter V. Brett
Started reading "The Daylight War" from Peter V. Brett.

Comic Books:
Started reading Harley Quinn, Cat Woman and Power Girl.

Watched Dumb and Dumber To, Ex Machina

Watching Defiance and Extant
Finished Red Dwarf
Started watching IT Crowd.

Music :
Anything sung by Phil Collins, Genesis included. That's All.
David Fonseca (A Portuguese artist who makes music with good lyrics both in English and Portuguese): "I'll Never Hang My Head Down"

Favorite Quote:
"There's nothing gained in lamenting what never was" from "The Desert Spear", Peter V. Brett.

As most of you know I don't run ads on the blog for your uncluttered viewing pleasure, the blog runs solely from Patrons support, if you feel like becoming one this is the place: https://www.patreon.com/statusreport?alert=1&ty=h

This are the Patrons of  August:

Gary Morrison
Thomas Millard
Luke "Caslas" Westwood
Matthew Shine
Roy Harmsworth (Was nice to see you again! :) )
Scott Whitaker
Robert Meachen
Shane Knysh
Major Tom Bombadil
webium (A mod maker!)
Donovan A Willett
Michael Duke
Jonas Pollaschek
Samuel Hallam (Check out his amazing Artwork!)
Michael Bermingham
Diego Longo
Michael Andreen
Tony Strandberg
Jonathan Ireland (Irelandmann244)
PointyHairedJedi (A WG CC! Check out his YouTube Channel!)
Tim Berry
Gustavo Rabelo
Mickey Dabbelyou
Vu Nhat Tu
Marc Bourgoin
Thanasis (He has a WoT's content YouTube Channel - in Greek!)
Ewan hewett
Christoffer Dahlblom
misael contreras
Jenka Tamar
Peter Nordlund
Xinchen Yu
Tom Johnston
SadoMasticator WoT-NA

If your nickname is not here is because or the payment method was declined or you became a Patron recently and are to be featured the next month. Nevertheless, thank you very much everyone, Patrons and readers! <3