September 8, 2014

When does an interest or hobby cross over into obsession? And is it necessarily always a *bad* thing? I know you all know what I am talking about here. I’m sure we all have some sort of WoW memorabilia, many of you have gone to Blizzcon, you’ve had guild meetups, etc. Heck, my old guild all went to Disney World together.

So I’m probably preaching to the choir here, but … I want to talk about my With Fire and Sword obsession (again). And yes, I have reasons for why it’s a good thing instead of a bad thing. Hear me out.

My main point here is that it has actually gotten me *away* from the computer. Sounds crazy when you look at my Steam profile and see that I have spent 300 hours playing the game. Ok fine. But I’ve done several things other than play the game.

I’ve spent a lot of time on Wikipedia, learning about the Khmelnytsky Uprising, Cossacks, the Polish Commonwealth, the Ukraine, and vodka. Ok, maybe that wasn’t ‘away from the computer’ but it was learning! Give me a break here eh?

I’ve read the book With Fire and Sword by Henryk Sienkiewicz.

I’ve watched the Jerzy Hoffman movie, in Polish with subtitles. My mom hates subtitles and is annoyed that I always turn them on, but even in regular programming it’s easy to miss what someone says … not so much if I can read it at the same time. Plus, with this, it’s a great way to learn some of the pronunciations. Skrzetuski sounds NOTHING like it is spelled. I mean, the -tuski part does but the first part is not even close.

I bought some vodka. That could possibly go under the ‘bad’ category, but hey, it got me out of the house and to the liquor store, right?

Then, on Saturday as I was going to the grocery store, I saw a banner for a Ukrainian festival. As luck would have it, it was happening on Sunday (yesterday) at a nearby Ukrainian Catholic Church. You KNOW I had to go. HAD. TO. It was a perfect day for it, too … 70 and sunny. Just gorgeous. They had Ukrainian music playing and of course plenty of Ukrainian food. I ate pyrogys, kielbasa, cabbage rolls, and sauerkraut. I washed it down with Obolon, a brand of beer brewed in Kyiv.

They had all kinds of things for sale, too. Ethnic costumes, the little decorated eggs, beaded jewelry, decals for your car, scarves, hats, flasks, t-shirts … you name it, they had it, with a Ukrainian flag or symbol on it. I bought these colorful coasters because I’ve been moving the one that I had back and forth between the computer desk and the end table next to the easy chair, so I *needed* them.


I bought this magnet for my fridge in the shape of modern-day Ukraine, in the colors of the flag and with all of the ‘states’ outlined. Except they don’t call them states there, I forgot the word, I think it starts with O …(brb wiki) … ah yes, oblasts.


They also had CDs. Even better, they are in MP3 format so there are really 5 full CDs on each disk. Only problem was, well … I definitely can’t read Ukrainian. So I have no idea what’s actually on any of them. How am I going to pick one out? Well, in the end it was quite easy, because this one …


has a picture of the statue of Khmelnytsky that stands in Kyiv, so I bought it as much for the photo as I did for the music.

So … obsessed? Yeah maybe. But is it really so bad to immerse myself in the history and culture of something REAL?

AFK, working on my winged hussar Halloween costume.

Bye Bye

September 5, 2014

So, while the Seahawks were busy decimating the Packers last night, I got busy doing the same to the Crimean Khanate. Giray and his men were out in full force. They would take Ladyzhyn, I would take it back while they rode over to Kezlev. As soon as Ladyzhyn was taken back, I would ride over and break up the siege at Kezlev, and they would turn around and go back to Ladyzhyn. Eventually, one of the times they went back, I noticed they had left only one commander at Perekop. I had my two favorite guys with me, Gritsenko and Bogun, so instead of following them, we thumbed our noses at them and captured Perekop instead.


Then we did the same at Kafa, Bakhchisaray, and Kalanchak. After each siege we ran into a couple of them coming to see what was up, and defeated them easily. NOW Ladyzhyn was the ONLY thing they held. Taking that was simple since it had been besieged so many times recently and had no time to build up a garrison. Then it was just a matter of chasing down the two or three individual armies that were riding around the map with no fortresses to hide in.


As icing on the cake, Hmel awarded the rich former capital Bakhchisaray to me.

Once the dust settled, the former commanders of the Khan started to choose new factions for themselves. So far, three of them have joined the Muscovites, one joined Sweden, and one has joined us.


I’m not sure how all this is decided. Heck, Mirza Divey is still in my prison in Kezlev. I don’t suppose that is earning us any bonus points, eh?


Lose that blue banner, Mirza Karach … it’s time to pick a new side.

Are You Ready for Some Football?

September 4, 2014

The landscape on the east end of the map has changed a bit, with the Swedes taking back the fortresses we gained from them, as well as taking Minsk and that one that starts with D next to Lviv that I never remember the name of. I think it’s Dubensk. Anyway … they recently made peace with us (with no intervention on my part) so now we can focus on the Khan. We’ve got them down to just three fortresses: Perekop, Kafa, and their capital at Bakhchisaray. Oh wait … make that four, they also still have Kalanchak. I myself am currently holding Kezlev and have successfully fended off two sieges there. I am determined to hang onto it, as it is tucked into a corner behind Perekop, right next to Bakhchisaray … perfectly situated to run interference and keep them disorganized.

I am coming for you, Baryn-bet!


Oh hey, I think that’s Ivan Sirko on the left there. I haven’t talked about him yet. I love fighting with him because his fighting style is similar to mine, with a cavalry lance and a speedy courser. Turn around Ivan, let’s see your face buddy.


And I’m coming for you too, Baesid-khan.


That one must have been a huge battle, looking at the flags over everyone’s heads. I see the banners of Gomon, Nosach, Sirko, and either Popovich or Pushkarenko, theirs are so similar I’m not sure which one it is.

Didn’t I already post another one that started with B, too? Yeah, Bukryn-bey. I can never remember which one of these guys is which. I know, I know … I need to work on that.

What’s that? What does this have to do with football? Oh yeah … last night was my fantasy draft! We always draft the night before the season opens. I even got a bit of a bonus this year, as Bills linebacker Brandon Spikes was in my office on Tuesday!


Pretty cool.

As for my team … well, I’m crossing my fingers. I got Colin Kaepernick as my QB, DeMarco Murray and Montee Ball as my starting RBs, Jordy Nelson, Randall Cobb and Cordarrelle Patterson for WRs, Kyle Rudolph at TE, Adam Vinatieri kicking, and the Cards D, with the Lions D playing the Jets on the Cards’ week 4 bye. The only problem here is … I can only play four of the five RBs/WRs. Granted, it’s a good problem to have, but it’s still annoying knowing I can’t put everyone on the roster at once and have to actually think about it because inevitably, the dude I bench is gonna have a great game and piss me off.

I’m pretty excited because with my new setup, I can watch tonight’s game on my big tv AND beat up Tartars all at the same time. :D

Lords in the Field 6

September 2, 2014

Yes, six, because I’m too lazy to think up good post names right now.

So .. I’m all moved. And I got FioS. woo! Got the computer set up in a corner of the living room facing the tv so I can be distracted by the moving pictures during raids.

As far as Mount & Blade goes, things are going well. We lost all the stuff we took from the Swedes awhile back, because they and the Crimeans both came at us in huge groups again and I had to leave the northeast and come back down to the heart of Cossack territory when the Tatars took Izmail from me.

Remember how I mentioned money problems several posts back? Yeah, that’s a thing of the past. With all of my investments and a firm hold on Cashcow, which brings me 10 grand in taxes each month, I have … well I haven’t counted it recently, but I must have at least half a million thalers squirreled away.

Ready for some screenshots? Here we have old Bogdan Popovich, lord of Chernigov. He has helped me a lot. I usually call him Poppy or Pops.


And my buddy Maksim Nesterenko. He helped a lot in the battles against the Swedes, since he is lord of Lida Castle up near their territory.


I think I’ll stop there. I have others still but I’m having fun dragging this out. :p


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