Nov 04 2008
Given everything happening in the days since Lyssa and I got married, I'm still catching up on lots of things, most of them work-related though there are a few things rather closer to the homestead that were unfortunately pushed to the back burner. I covered last Monday, but not what happened during our second day off... because we have neither the time nor money to take a proper honeymoon at this time, we decided to spend the day as tourists in Washington, DC. Though we live so close to the nation's capital it's a rare day that we actually take the time to see the sights and explore.
It was a chilly day as we stepped off the Metro and headed for the Newseum of downtown Washington, DC, a six-storm interactive museum of news, media, and journalism. You can't miss it if you're downtown - the facade is mostly steel and glass, there are glass cases out front that display the day's front pages of over a dozen major metropolitan newspapers, and inscribed into the gargantuan marble tablet that makes up part of the building is the text of the First Amendment. As you walk in you'll have to pass through the metal detectors at a minimum-security checkpoint (a commonplace sight in DC anymore) and pay $20us for a ticket, but it's well worth the trip and money. Chances are you'll only see a fraction of the museum on any given trip - Lyssa and I were there for an afternoon and we only saw the bottom floor and part of the ground floor. On display right now are copies of every Pulitzer Prize winning photograph since the beginning (so far as I can tell) along with some of the cameras used to take those pictures, and on the bottom floor is an exhibit describing the relationship that the FBI has had with the news media since the roaring 20's. Artifacts from many famous cases are on display there, including the personal effects of John Dillinger, a replica of the Unibomber's cabin, and the electric chair used to execute the man implicated in the death of the Lindburgh baby. There are also exhibits dealing with counter-espionage cases from the Cold War and six segments of the Berlin Wall, complete with one of the guard towers, which was a downright unsettling thing to behold, I don't mind telling you.
On display in the giftshop is one of Datamancer's custom steampunk keyboards - the Aviator, if I recall rightly. Cost: $2000us.
Samhain was last Friday, and Lyssa and I spent the night at Laurelinde's place, rather than go out on the town. Unfortunately, I hadn't dressed up that day, which is something that I rather regret. That morning I was so tired I barely had it together enough to tie my boots let alone pick something interesting to wear, and so passed on dressing up; everyone else at work had a very different idea. Due to a last-minute crisis late that afternoon I didn't actually leave work until 1800 EST5EDT and wound up going home to take care of a few things, change into one of my nicer Victorian suits, and pack for an overnight trip. By the time I arrived it was well after 2000 EST5EDT, and I got there just in time to sit down for dinner with everyone. Lyssa made her famous city ham for everyone, and it's fair to say that we tore into it with gusto. The remainder of the evening was spent in the basement playing Munchkin with the family and laughing ourselves silly. I don't know what time I turned in that night, only that I wasn't reasonably able to keep my eyes open anymore.
One thing I did notice was the very small number of kids out for Trick Or Treat on Samhain; their numbers have been in decline for a number of years now. I think that two kids at most showed up at the door all night. Before I left home to head to Laurelinde's place, I don't think that I saw or heard any kids running around in my neighborhood.
It's kind of sad, actually.
The next morning brought with it breakfast, in the form of N-'s homemade banana bread, ham-and-cheese omelettes (made, in part, of leftovers from the night before), and hot coffee. Saturday promised to be a slow day; the only real plans that anyone had was to sit down and play a scenario of Midnight, a Dungeons and Dragons v3.5 campaign in which evil triumphed, and the gods of good were locked out of the universe. I happened to sit out this game because there were other things that I wanted to do, such as edit and post all of the wedding pictures that appeared here earlier this week and catch up on some of my reading.
Maybe I'm risking geek cred here, but D&D really doesn't do it for me. All things considered, high fantasy games aren't my thing, just as high fantasy novels aren't really of interest to me. If given a choice, I'd much rather play a sci-fi or modern era game like Conspiracy-X, or at the very least fantasy with a more modern spin, like Mage: the Ascension. Maybe my tastes have changed as I've gotten older, or maybe wanting to play it for so many years but never getting to burned it out of me. At any rate, I still had a good time, and got to do a few things that I'd been meaning to get around to.