Category Archives: Friday Filler

Friday Filler – Really?

Thank Grog It’s Firday,

I don’t know about you guys, but I have to admit that I didn’t even realize it was June. Really.  May felt like one big 90-Day March…and then, all of the sudden, it was “something completely different.”

So, the Pride Mini-Event is over. The reason I knew it was June, is that I remembered that the event ended on June 3rd. And the event ended Wednesday, so I was able to deduce that it had to be June.  And probably the 3rd.

But there’s a reason for my confusion…and I think it’s legitimate.

I honestly don’t know if it’s 2020, or if it’s 1968.

And then I remembered, “oh…right…they had a Pride Event…so it can’t be 1968.”   And then I remembered that most of what I am seeing on TV is being broadcast over cell phone cameras, so it REALLY can’t be 1968.  Except it still kinda feels like 1968. They launched some guys into space. There were some riots. So it must be 1968!

But wait! I know it’s not 1968…because we are playing a mobile device game about the Simpsons. And the Simpsons didn’t show up for…wait…when did they show up?  How long have we been playing this game?  Is this just a bad LSD trip?  Is it REALLY 1968?
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Friday Filler – When is Enough of This…Really, Really, Enough?


Thank Grog It’s Firday!!

I know. It’s been nuts. I don’t care where you fall in the spectrum of being a good citizen, to the full opposite, by becoming a scofflaw (look up last week’s Filler).  But, I know you are feeling it.  How long are we going to have to keep this up? When is enough, really, really enough?

Well…for me it was seeing Homer dressed up, after I “won” his “Pride Homer” skin. Yay?

Enough. Really.
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Friday Filler – Routines In Chaos to Conform or Rebel

Thank Grog It’s Firday!

I don’t know about you, but the biggest enemy for me during this pandemic panic isn’t the pandemic, but trying to find a way to adhere to staying home, when “home” is still in a state of perpetual chaos.

There is something weirdly comforting to being forced to play TSTO while the world breaks down around us.  I admit to not caring much for this mini-update…and yet, I am playing it, mostly out of habit and duty.  I am addicted enough, even at this level of “meh,” to log on and “do the stuff.” But, I also feel some “sense of duty and gratitude” that EA is still acting as if nothing is happening out there. TSTO is there. And, playing it isn’t that hard to do…and ignoring it would make me feel like a scofflaw.

I love that word. It’s an old word, but not as old as it sounds.  Unlike TSTO…which in game terms, is way older than you would think it is. The game is showing its age, just as this new state of normal is revealing cracks in our systems and personal abilities to do the right thing.

But, what is doing the right thing in this situation?  Do you conform? Or do you rebel, and simply not do the things that you are asked to do?  When do you become a TSTO or social human scofflaw?
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Friday Filler – Getting Back to Normal…Mostly

Thank Grog It’s Firday!! 

So, today, in Oregon (the State of the REAL SPRINGFIELD) we began Phase One of the “Covid Re-Opening” plan.  We were able to do so, because in Lane County (which is also the home county to the REAL SPRINGFIELD), our numbers have been so low, as to be almost negligible.  But, this isn’t about that particular “Getting Back to Normal…Mostly.

No. Believe it or not, this is actually about “Getting Back to Normal” in TSTO…mostly.

Because, the fact is, during all of this recent Covid Craziness (and the most recent “TSTO Event”), the game just kept being the game.  Same routines. Same results. Same minor distractions. Same kinds of SNAFUs (which stands for Situation Normal All F’d Up), and is an old military term.  If you don’t believe in military SNAFU’s…then just wait until the military is in charge of doing the vaccines.  But, I digress…

The fact is…when you look at our Springfields, almost NOTHING has changed, except for a little more (a lot more?) clutter added to the landscape.

But for me…one of the most important characters in my game, is back to “normal.”
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Friday Filler – I Can See Clearly Now…YIKES!

Thank Grog It’s Firday!

I’m writing this a day early, because tomorrow I will once again be “under the laser” for cataract surgery Part Deux.

Let’s just admit from the top, that during these very odd and trying times, anything that seems “normal” is a bit of a miracle…especially when the normal is a miracle of science.  And, come on…the speed and precision with which cataract surgery takes place is pretty damn miraculous (as well as an amazing light show that took me back to the 1970s..far out, man!).

But, the problem with having “One Old Eye and One New Eye,” is that you spend a lot of time comparing.  It’s like so many other things in life. If you spend all of your time looking back at the way things used to be, you can’t appreciate the way things are now.   And, contrary to what current events would have you believe, there are plenty of good things that have come out of “this very bad thing.” But, they take perspective…and being able to see that things really are more clear now, even if that reveals cracks in the details.

And, certainly on that list, is the fact that TSTO is still alivemostly.  I guess that is all in the way in which you see things. But, for me…I am lucky enough to see things from two perspectives…at least until tomorrow (which is actually today, or yesterday, depending on when you read this).
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Friday Filler – Things That Have Gotten Weird(er)


Thank Grog It’s Firday!

I have to admit that this has been a pretty great week, if you want to ignore the fact that it’s still weird out there.  I mean, yes…it’s still very weird out there. And depending on who you talk to (from a safe distance), it is even weirder than usual.

People are losing it.  Not just about the game not working right, but other stuff too.  I think it has to do with realistic expectations.  I mean…come on…did you really thing that TSTO would work great during an international pandemic, when it hardly worked well before???   Bob can only do so much…even though working at home has been great for him!  He doesn’t have to wear pants, and his cat “Frederick-Von-Cattinburgh” loves having him around.

But, if you start to look at some of the other hints, it’s obvious to me that the writers were losing it, BEFORE the rest of us were losing it.  Bearing in mind (not baring…that’s different…ask Bob), that a lot of this had to be planned, and most likely written and programmed way before the Pandemic Panic hit.

So there are some weird twists…even for TSTO.
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Friday Filler – The Dangers Of Too Much Nuthin’ To Do…

Thank Grog it’s Firday…

So…yes…I am starting to see a clear delineation between how people are “dealing” with the current Covid Pandemic Pandemonium.  Some are bored out of their minds, and have binge-watched more TV in the past month than they have the previous year. Others are so busy “Zooming” their way through jobs and meetings and other volunteer work, that they have started to really dread even thinking about opening another screen…especially to play a game.

Count me in that second group.

I’m not trying to be a martyr, or whine about doing things that are important…but, damn…I admit that mostly I am sick of people. And that is really weird, because I hardly see any people live and in person.

Having my wife home 24/7 is a blessing that many wish they had. She is a lovely person, when she isn’t driving me batshirt crazy with “her ways” of doing things.  We never comes to blows…but, it comes close.  She is like a family cat…who is ALWAYS under foot…placing herself in the direct line of traffic, and plopping her computer down for HER zoom meetings…in the middle of kitchen.

And yes…it’s all my fault.
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Friday Filler – Thank Grog It’s…Wait…What Day Is It?

Thank Grog It’s Firday!

I don’t know about you, but recent events have definitely put the “Grog” in my Firday!

I have to admit…never in a zillion years would I have thought that Reality actually makes the dialogue in our silly game seem tame, sober, and even a tad boring by comparison. Watching the news any night, is like turning on a “B-Rate Horror Film” in the middle, and then realizing that the chocolate covered raisins you bought at the snack bar, aren’t chocolate covered at all.  I’ll let your imagination fill in the blanks.

Here in Lane County, Oregon…the home of the REAL SPRINGFIELD, we are in a weird bubble that we hope stays in place…but all continue to be touched in real time by the insanity of other parts of the country. We are distracted by the fact that we probably don’t really even NEED distracting. Which is weird…knowing that my East Coast family and friends are suffering in an entirely different reality.

It makes writing about a silly mobile game seem almost sinful.  But, I know my “duty” here is to distract… So, I will do my best to do so.
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Friday Filler – In Support of EA…And Hope

Thank Grog it’s Firday!

And yes…like you, I barely know what day it is…and am writing this way early.
It is going to be one of the shorter posts I’ve written…which will please a good number of you.

First…my apologies for anyone who got a notice that this had posted yesterday. Fat finger syndrome. I hit the wrong button on my iPhone when I was trying to start this post.

Next..for the love of God. Matt is messing with us with the SkyFinger main screen image. That STILL is not a finger…even if you put a wrestling singlet on it.

OK now to the real post…

The fact is, I’m working hard on finding the Joy these days,,,,this thing is starting to get personal.  Not going to go into details…but suffice it to say that “The Covid,” as CrankyOldGuy likes to call it, has taken a handful of folks I knew closely, or next-to-closely. And, the loss of John Prine hit me harder than I expected.  I had the good luck to interview him back in my radio days. Class act. Hilarious sense of humor…and probably one of the best songwriters around.  I loved the way he wove humor into pathos…and using words that sounded common and conversational…while being pretty damn deep.

Ironically, one of my favorite songs was, “Don’t Bury Me,” which spoke of how he wanted his body used after he went. After beating cancer twice (barely), there wasn’t much left of “ol John” to go around.

Irreverence is underrated.

But, as always…I DIGRESS….

What I meant to write about was how thankful I am that Bob is still working double shifts at EA, and somehow broke through the insanity of the lockdowns in California to put up this weirdly funny event. We really need something that is familiar, and light, and silly…even if it is redundant, and they DIDN’T INCREASE THE ITEM LIMITS!!!

But, I like it. So shoot me.  Let me tell you why…
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TGIF- Of Cheaters, Lockdowns and Mask

Thank Grog It’s Firday!

Although…Firday doesn’t feel a whole lot different than Mernday. So much for retirement.  All of my “casual clients” in my “semi-retirement” mode, have all been in a state of crazy PIVOT mode…along with all of my volunteer work, and more Zoom hours than any human should have to endure.  I have a zillion balls in the air…and they are all on fire.

I found the last bit of this update, horribly ironic.  There is nothing like a dialogue about cheating in baseball, when we are being cheated OUT of baseball!  One of the things I loved the most about Baseball, was the lack of overt cheating (spitballs and corked bats don’t count).  But, like so many other things…technology has sullied the game I once loved.

Of course the bit about the Isotopes was a thinly veiled reference to the horrendous Astros scandal.  It was funny…mostly… But, it made me think of so many other cheaters in the world. 
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