In the run-up to the open house was also the Brighton pinball league. (Between it and Marvin's now we get either zero or two league meetings per week, at least outside school breaks.) This was our first league meeting there since the infamous Silver Bells incident and so we were probably lower-ranked than we'd otherwise have been, although in my case I landed with a couple people I'd played with already, including one guy who has a particular favorite game --- El Dorado, a 1970s electromechanical machine --- which he now hates because they moved the game (rather than selling it) but allegedly didn't re-balance the table for its new location. Yeah, the difference in level is subtle but so is pinball, especially a game like this which requires a lot of very long shots and which is extremely touchy, and which if you tilt kills your whole game rather than just the ball.
But I came through with my dignity intact, with one first-place finish (in the last game we played, it happens) and a couple second-place finishes, so that I'm probably getting closer to about where I belong. Particularly gratifying is my first-place finish came on Whitewater, a game I've never got the hang of but which our pinball friend (Cedar Point edition) is a master at. We weren't playing him, but, I felt good about doing nearly as well in three balls as he does in two-thirds of one. bunny_hugger had a rougher night, which wasn't fair, especially as she had one game stolen out from under her on the last ball of the last player, and on FunHouse (remarkably, not her pick) Rudy was arbitrary and cruel. On the other hand, the high score which bunny_hugger had put up on FunHouse at Free Play Day last month was still on the table, and I was able --- not during league play, because life just does not work like that --- to put a #1 high score on it myself. (They'd reset the #1 through #4 high scores, though not the Grand Champion position, which is a different setting for some reason.)
In hanging around a long time afterwards we were able, among other things, to play a little with the Lansing league champion. We couldn't discern anything about the strange matter with his girlfriend(?) and what might have happened (though we didn't pry, either; just asked how he was doing, the way you would to anyone). He seemed more distracted than normal, but he has a cell phone and you know what that's like. (Yet another mystery, though: apparently he hasn't been on Facebook for weeks, so whatever he was puttering around with it wasn't there.)
Trivia: Midway was the first island in the Hawaiian island chain claimed by the United States (as a coal depot), though it is not part of the state of Hawaii. Source: How The States Got Their Shapes, Mark Stein.
Currently Reading: Annihilation, Jeff VanderMeer.