"What Are You Carrying?" & Other Questions: March 2023 Edition

April 3, 2023

Every month, in the Tom Bihn forums a staff member posts a short set of questions for folks to answer. I liked them, and thought I’d write up my answers here instead!

Here are the questions and answers for March 20231.

#What bag/accessories are you carrying?⁠

Last month I retired the backpack I’ve been using pretty much every day since 2011, my Eagle Creek Iver2. My old backpack held up well through twenty-two years of school, travel, university, and commuting but started to show its limitations when it came to transporting the things I carry regularly now. My new backpack the Tom Bihn Synik 30 has plenty of room for everything I carry regularly and room to pack more.

At the moment my typical daily carry includes: my Steam Deck, one or two laptops (work/personal), a few small board/card games, a water bottle, spare deodorant, a portable battery pack, and a bunch of cables/adaptors/chargers.

#What are you reading?⁠

This month I finished two Matt Kindt comics: Super Spy and Cosmic Detective. Matt Kindt does a great job of making me feel dumb. His panels always make me feel like I’m missing a trick and the subject always feels a little more complex than I like to engage with, at least in the way I typically like to consume comics. All that said, I enjoy Kindt’s style and niche. Cosmic Detective I consider the weaker of the two, but probably the one I’d return to - it had fantastic art and I felt a little like I was rushing through it towards the end. Super Spy on the other hand felt better written, and whilst I was sad when I got to the end I felt like I’d got everything I wanted from it.

I still have a bit of a backlog of comics and books but I’m slowly making progress.

#What are you playing or watching (movies, theatre, video games, etc.)?⁠

In video games, I finally “beat” Hades, which was a lot of fun. I also picked up Hollow Knight and Quantum Break in the Steam sale but haven’t got into either of those particularly, instead I’ve mainly been enjoying playing video games with other people. I’ve been playing a lot of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and Heroes of the Storm, and I’ve definitely been getting better at both. In Smash I’ve been trying to get good at Pokemon Trainer, and I’ve been trying to be more competitive in Heroes of the Storm, and started playing ranked again.

I got to play a few new notable board games in March: Kluster, a game about trying to avoid attracting magnets as you try and squeeze them into a small area of rope; Fishing Lessons, a simple quick solo card-game about trying to use the right set of lesson cards to help you flip the right “fish” cards over to meet your goal; Stationfall, a complex sandbox game about trying to race against time to achieve your secret objective (and avoid falling prey to other players’ objectives) before the space station you’re on is destroyed, Eclipse: Second Dawn for the Galaxy, a game about exploring the galaxy, researching technology, managing your population and economy, and space combat; and finally Campaign Trail, in which you traverse the USA campaigning, debating, and holding voter drives in an attempt to win an election to become President of the United States of America.

I was also lucky enough to get a play in of Guards of Atlantis II with a few friends which is rapidly becoming one of my favourite games, and as it stands is one of my four games rated as a 10/10.

Marvel Champions has been my most played game (by duration) during this period, and as I wrote about recently I finally finished the Galaxy’s Most Wanted box and have spent a decent chunk of change purchasing and organising a lot more Marvel Champions content.

I have been, as always, watching a rather large amount of YouTube. Linus Tech Tips and The Dice Tower have been the mainstays, but I also started watching a little bit of Khaldor’s Heroes of the Storm tournament, Meta Madness, and some videos on drumming3.

#What are you listening to?⁠

  • Beggin’ by Måneskin
  • Bout the Business by Hopsin
  • Bitch Better Have My Money by Rihanna
  • Ballin’ by Logic

#What are you cooking/baking/drinking?⁠

This question is hard to answer. I like Disaronno and Pornstar Martinis.

#What are you making/creating/doing?⁠

I’m still working on making my own role playing game, Thunderstrike. I haven’t written a lot of code recently, or particularly written up any rules either. Instead, I’ve been slowly refining the movement rules in combat and some of the more regular procedures. I’ve also double down on the world of Valinde and have been tying together a lot of history and geography.

March has been pretty light on me writing code, but I did manage to write my first blog post in a while and make a few improvements to my eink display4, the website for Thunderstrike, and to Chazz — the Discord bot I wrote for playing TTRPGs.

#Where have you gone lately? -or- What travel destinations are on the horizon for you?⁠

I’ve been to London far too much, and I did a quick trip back home to Corby but I haven’t done anything exciting beyond that, and there’s nothing planned.

#What is the most special gift you have received?​

This is a hard question. I’ve had a lot of really nice gifts over the years, even though I’m not really a gift-receiving kind of person. My favourite gift ever was probably my Game Boy Advance when I was no older than maybe 8 or 9. That was what really launched me into video-games.

Joel drew me, and then had the drawing drawn again by one of my favourite artists.

Jon from Rock RMS/The Spark Development Network also “gifted me” a place to stay, a free ticket to a few conferences, and an internship (plus lots more) which had a huge impact on me and my life.

  1. Even though it’s April, technically. I guess this month will cover everything up to and including April 2nd. ↩︎

  2. The Eagle Creek Iver seems to have mostly been erased from the internet. As far as I can tell it was a 24L backpack with an expandable compartment. ↩︎

  3. I have no intentions to learn the drums. ↩︎

  4. It’s on my radar to write about this in a blog post soon. ↩︎

See Also

Last Updated: 2023-04-03 17:38