🏈 Saturday’s Iron Bowl loss was brutal, but the people calling for a head coach’s job when he took Alabama to the last seconds of the game with the worst roster Auburn has had in years are crazy. I’m sad at how impatient so many college football fans are now.

📺 Yesterday’s Doctor Who special, “The Star Beast”, was just great Doctor Who. Does that mean it was a campy and hand wavey at points? 100%, but that’s Doctor Who. It’s fun to have Tennant back for a short run, and I’m excited to see the next 2 specials.

The Muppet Christmas Carol will forever be my favorite Christmas movie, but no one in my house likes it. So since I can’t watch it with anyone, I got these Funko Pop on Black Friday sale to keep the season Jolly and Joyous (falala) at my desk.

Two Muppet Christmas Carol Funko Pop in boxes, Scrooge and Charles Dickens+Rizzo

If you’ve ever thought to yourself, “I wonder if there is an SNL sketch that perfectly encapsulates Craig’s sense of humor,” the answer is now an emphatic yes.

This marriage is officially a teenager today. Grateful that it keeps getting better.

🔗 🖋️ Pilot Custom 823 Fountain Pen Re-Review

It’s funny that sbrebrown posted this today, because I was thinking of posting the opposite. I’ve had this pen for about 2 months now, and it might be my desert island pen. It’s not flashy, but that nib is SO good.

Got to spend the weekend in Atlanta having a date night with my sweet wife and helping our friends Knox and Jamie celebrate 10 years of The Popcast as volunteers for their live show. No kids, good friends, great weekend.

My wife and I dressed up for a date nightMy wife and I in our volunteer shirts for The Popcast LiveThe Popcast Staff on stage at the end of their live show

A little shy of 48 hours since I last took it off the charger and the Apple Watch Ultra 2 still has 27% battery. That includes an hour long workout and some cellular usage along with everyday things like messaging and timers. I am so happy with this watch.

Last photo of my Series 7 and first with the Ultra 2. Even in a quick, crappy photo you can see how much brighter the Ultra 2 is outside. I love the Apple Watch, and am really excited to have the screen and battery life of the Ultra.

Apple Watch Series 7 on a WristApple Watch Ultra 2 on Wrist

🖋️ New Pen Day!

I am starting a new role at my company and celebrated with a “work pen”. This is the Pilot Custom 823 in Smoke with a Fine Nib. I have a few Pilot M and an EF, but this is my first plain F, and it writes perfectly.

Fountain Pen and Ink Bottle in Box

Literally the only reason we pay for cable is college football, and now I can’t because Spectrum and ESPN can’t work out a deal? It’s the first game under a new Auburn head coach, and I have 0 way to watch it. 🤬🤬🤬

📺 It’s almost Ahsoka time, and my expectations are so high it will be almost impossible not to be let down. But I love these characters from Rebels so much and I’m so excited to see them in live action.

Today I did my bi-weekly therapy session over FaceTime on my MacBook Air running the Sonoma Beta. Twice I set off the balloon reaction without any clue how or why. It gave my therapist a good laugh, but I need to figure it out before next session. 😂

🖋️I got my Plotter 2024 Weekly and Monthly Refills for both my A5 and Bible sized plotters. I learned my lesson last year that even if you aren’t sure you’ll want them, go ahead and get them. I decided I wanted them later, and they were gone.

🎵 The Band CAMINO - The Dark

Speaking of favorite bands with new albums, this came out yesterday and has been playing non-stop. Very different from The Arcadian Wild, but still fantastic. Favorite track is Save My Life.

🎵 The Arcadian Wild - Welcome

I have loved this band since I saw them open for one of my favorite artists a little while back. This album is everything I love about them. Fantastic harmonies and original writing. Check out the song Dopamine.

For as long as I can remember, my Dolly Parton obsessed wife has wanted to make the pilgrimage to Dollywood. Yesterday, we finally made it happen with our oldest 2 kids.

So much fun, and such a well thought out it park.

Family in front of wooden structure with Dollywood sign

🎙️ John Mayer - Tetragrammation with Rick Rubin

Over 2 hours of one of the best producers to ever live interviewing my favorite musician? Yes please.

I’ll almost done with the episode and it is incredible.

I’ve been really enjoying my copy of MarsEdit I won at Micro Camp, but I’m curious how others are handling its lack of an iPhone app. I have a draft post saved locally I’ve been working on that I can’t add to if inspiration strikes while I’m out and about.

Should I save all drafts to Micro.blog too?

3 Weeks of Steam Deck

I have never been a serious gamer. I have had most Nintendo systems over the years, including the Switch, and have been addicted to many a mobile game, but I have never had a a system that could play the popular, AAA games.

A lot of that was not seeing the real value of these expensive consoles and games, and not having the time to devote to games.

But over the last few years, there have been several games I’ve really wanted to play. Specifically, as a Star Wars nerd, Jedi Fallen Order and Jedi Survivor. I also realized what I was missing in gaming after watching the TV version of The Last of Us. It helped me understand the story component of games I hadn’t ever considered.

Then over the last few months, I started looking for something to do to wind down after the kids go to bed that didn’t involve an algorithmic timeline, and considered video games as an option. It was important to find something I could do while still in the room with my wife, so a large console was out.

I realized a Steam Deck might be the answer and began researching. Finally, I ordered the mid tier, 256GB version, and have had it for about 3 weeks. It has been an incredible decision.

The first game I bought was Spider-man Remastered since it was on my wishlist, and on sale with the deck arrived. I’ve now finished the main storyline, and am working through the DLCs. It is incredibly satisfying to end my day swinging through Manhattan and fighting Doc Ock.

I’ve also bought a few smaller games like Stray and Vampire Survivors to break up Spider-man. They’ve been delightful as well.

The Steam Deck is everything I wanted it to be. I am getting to experience incredibly fun games with great stories. The hardware and performance have been great so far. My only complaint is the battery life, but I understand why that has to be with a system like this.

It’s pricy, but right now I’m willing to direct some budget to things that help my mental health. And as silly as it sounds, the Steam Deck does.

Without getting too bleak in a blog post about a game console, winding down with algorithmic timelines was really bad for me, and I desperately needed a change. This has been a hard summer for a lot of reasons, and I have stood up to that difficulty better than I would have expected. Some of that resilience is coming from having this outlet for myself.

I really love this console. It is allowing me to experience games I would never be able to otherwise. Is it the same doing it on a large TV? No, but that would have never happened. The Steam Deck has opened a door to a world I don’t intend to close anytime soon.