Wednesday What’s Up

What I’m Coaching

Wrapped up what might be my final season coaching a football team. I stepped in as an assistant (offensive coordinator) for a team after being head coach or co-head coach for over 10 years. I loved it and enjoyed playing a more minor role while still having so many great interactions with the players and coaching staff. Don’t think I’ll return next year because of other plans Julie and I have, but time will tell.

What I’m Reading

  • I read Road to Disaster: A New History of America’s Descent into Vietnam, a different take on the leadership crisis in the 1960s the lead to our deepening involvement in this quagmire. VanDeMark, who was the co-author of McNamara’s memoir, analyzes the decision making using the framework of cognitive theory. While it is easy to condemn Kennedy, LBJ, McNamara, et al for their decisions (this has been done over and over in literature, and is justified), how can we learn from these mistakes and potentially apply them to our own future decisions? Worth a read if you are into this sort of analysis.

What I’m Contemplating

What I’m Listening To

How I’m Getting Better at Programming

  • Top 10 Must-Watch PyCon Talks – Partly because of my computer science teaching, partly because I’ve re-awakened my passion for programming, I’ve been going deep into leveling up my Python skills.

What I’m Playing

  • A whole bunch of Advanced Squad Leader. I ran the Portland area Wild West Fest ASL tournament in October, then attended the West Coast Rumble at BottosCon which was my first full participation in a tournament. I’m also playing the Hatten in Flames campaign with Allen which looks to be a load of fun. More on all this soon as I plan to write some after-action reports (AAR).
  • I played Fort Sumter: The Secession Crisis, 1860–61 on 2018–10–11 with Ken C and it remains a very solid short game with surprising depth.
  • Julie and I got Above and Below for Jacob for his birthday, and I was able to play it myself with Greg and Matt. Fun, thematic, story-driven Euro that plays in 2 hours or less.
  • Jacob and I played The Battle for Hill 218 while at Wild West Fest. Fun game but it always takes me a while to re-learn and re-teach it.
  • Julie and I played Ticket to Ride with another gamer couple and we decided we need to make a monthly play date with both of them. Next time maybe Märklin will be on the table.
  • After Ticket to Ride we played Crokinole! Been too long since I played this one, and they have a very nice board.
  • On Halloween night, Jack and I played D-Day Dice. Jack instantly fell in love with the game and asked Anne for it for Christmas, but sadly it is out of print and awaiting a new Kickstarter release.
  • While at Bottoscon, Doug and I playedHitler’s Reich but aborted after about 2 hours (including teaching). This game looks to be the disaster that everyone is claiming it to be.