Back to August. So with the intensity and thrill and excitement of Pinburgh over, how to get back to the normal sort of daily living? Yes, go to another pinball tournament.
BIL, a schoolteacher with an amazing ability to keep explaining to his Facebook friends all the many ways the right-wing propaganda they pass on is stupid, held a basement tournament back in February. He set another one for early August. We got in among the thirty or so available slots. bunny_hugger bought tickets without quite telling me, so it was a happy little surprise. He's got a basement full of mostly modern games, with a couple of rarities like Pinball Magic. He also has a couple older games. The Mars, God of War he has finally got the sound fixed so it wasn't quite so rumbling and ominous a lumbering beast as back in February.
The main tournament was run as match play, groups of three or four people playing for 4, 2, 1, or 0 points. Seven rounds, with the top sixteen players going into the A division and the next eight going into the B division. The side tournament would be one of putting up scores on an electromechanical game, Big Brave, with the top eight players then going on to a ladder-crawl tournament I'll explain later.
A minor oddity of the day: that father-son team I've mentioned some were at the tournament. Normal enough; the place isn't so far from their home that travelling to it would be impractical. But the father seemed to vanish sometime during the day and nobody knew what happened. We quipped that he told his son to just hitchhike home, but it's still not clear what did go on. Possibly just we and everyone we mentioned this to happened not to see the father. Or the father had to take care of something and came back to pick up the son. Just a silly distraction on our day.
The day also promised to have extra entertainment. Remember dimly that back on our anniversary bunny_hugger and I saw the outlines of a major, jaw-dropping, superspectacular flame war among Michigan Pinball? This was only like six weeks after that. One of the people in that flame war was going to be there, specifically to knock out AJG, one of the other major participants. This guy doesn't normally compete in stuff like this, owing (if I understand it right) to disagreements with the International Flipper Pinball Association about what their rankings are even supposed to promote. He takes that seriously, and shows up on competitive-pinball lists only as ``Suppressed Player''. AJG knew Suppressed Player was coming. He poured oil on these troubled waters by making up a T-shirt with a # symbol and something or other directly referencing the flame war.
So, you know, everyone going in expected this was going to be a potent mixture of everyone sharing Pinburgh stories, and enjoying a casual hangout, and maybe get to see somebody slug another person. Who wouldn't be up for that?
Trivia: The original target market for Sweet and Low was diabetics. Dieters were a surprise. Source: Sweet and Low, Rich Cohen.
Currently Reading: Stuff Matters: Exploring the Marvelous Materials that Shape our Man-Made World, Mak Miodownik.
PS: Reading the Comics, November 19, 2016: Thought I Featured This Already Edition, since last week was a busy one for comics.