This is the website of Abulsme Noibatno Itramne (also known as Sam Minter). Posts here are rare these days. For current stuff, follow me on Mastodon



December 2010

Coming Down off Christmas Highs

In the latest Curmudgeon’s Corner…

Sam and Ivan talk about:

  • Winter Weather
  • Lame Ducks
  • Obama Polls
  • Net Neutrality

Just click to listen now:

[wpaudio url=”″ text=”Recorded 26 Dec 2010″]


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On the Ferry

Reunion with Grandma B


Shot around 06 UTC today.

Shadow Puppets

Author: Orson Scott Card
Original Publication: 2002
Started: 2010 Nov 23
Finished : 2010 Nov 30
Format: Kindle
5563 locations / 8 days
695 locations / day

So, we’re now up to the 7th book in the Ender series. Shadow Puppets picks up soon after the last one ended up. But the main source of drama switches again, and the book seems to start moving back to the more philosophical sort of orientation as books 2-4 as compared to the more “things happening” sort of orientation of Books 1, 5 and 6. Which is OK I guess, but in this case a bunch of it seems to be pushing the whole “the purpose of life is to produce children” sort of agenda. Which actually started to get annoying.

The main plot point is that Bean, who is a genetically enhanced individual who gains great intelligence at the expense of abnormal growth patterns and an early death, initially intended not to have any children at all. But he is convinced otherwise. But they decide to create a number of embryos, test them for his condition, and only actually bring the ones without the condition to term. But, oh my, the people helping in this process are in league with the bad guy, and all the embryos, both with and without the condition, are stolen. Then we run around trying to get them back while also working to thwart the bad guy’s global plans.

I mean, I guess it is OK, but just a bit too much of it was centered around the “must have children, children are the meaning of life” thing. I’d say of the books in the series I’ve read, this was the weakest so far. I mean, it wasn’t horrible or anything, just not at the level of some of the others.

Doctor Who: The War Games: Disk 2

Original Release: 1969 Apr 19 to 1969 Jun 21
Date Watched: 2010 Nov 25
Queue: Who
Format: DVD

Time for another Doctor Who, and this time it is finishing up the last story from the Second Doctor, The War Games. We started it back in August with Disk 1.

Picking up the story, it turned out that the Second Doctor and his friends had ended up in the midst of war games where humans were plucked out of time and were fighting each other as part of some nefarious alien plot, while thinking they were still fighting the wars they had been plucked out of.

In this second disk the action moves from within the war games themselves to the alien headquarters. The Doctor goes back and forth with the menacing aliens, along with the one person working with them who is actually from The Doctor’s own people. All this plot stuff though is basically all just to set up the ending though. This is the last Second Doctor story.

So basically, at the end of the main part of the adventure here, the Doctor realizes that the only way to undo the mess that has been caused is to call his own people into the situation, to have them clean things up. Of course, there is the problem that he is a fugitive from his own people. Basically, the Time Lords have a policy of non-intervention in the affairs of other people. The Doctor chafed under those restrictions, stole a Tardis, and then traveled the universe getting involved with things interfering all the time (to make things better). As such, he was an outlaw. In any case, calling in the Time Lords mean that the Doctor himself is caught. He is given a quick show trial, then is sentenced to a regeneration (although they didn’t call it that yet) then exile on Earth. (His companions are made to forget all but their first adventures with the doctor and are put back where he picked them up.) And thus ends the Second Doctor.

The regeneration at the end… well, the start of one, you don’t actually see the transformation into the Third Doctor, is the main point of interest in this whole adventure. Otherwise it is a bunch of running around, although it has a few funny Second Doctor moments.

Oh, and Amy and Brandy were really amused at the faces some of the bad guys made as they hypnotized people at various parts of the story. That was indeed funny.

Happy Slowly Dying Tree with Shiny Stuff on it Day!

Beaten Down by the Forces of Regularity

In the latest Curmudgeon’s Corner…

Sam and Ivan talk about:

  • Tax Plan
  • DADT
  • Obama Long Game
  • Power Outage
  • Tron Legacy
  • Christmas Trees

Just click to listen now:

[wpaudio url=”″ text=”Recorded 19 Dec 2010″]


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It Wants In

We think it is the neighbor’s cat, but it now likes us too. It has been trying to come in with us. I am not sure either Roscoe or my allergies would appreciate that though.

New Glasses

For the first time in years. The ones I was wearing were actually two sets ago. The last set I lost in the ocean in Florida about six years ago after only having them about a year. So I reverted to my previous pair, which probably were of mid-90s vintage. and they were very very very scratched up at this point.

So all I can say now is, oh my gosh, I can SEE!

Alex gets my iPhone and Tweets to @ActuallyNPH