The First One is Free: Reviewing TV Pilots (Mr. Robot)

Because they pick and choose information to fit their conclusions, conspiracy theorists can never be wrong. Making this the premise of a show isn’t anything new, but fully committing to it is rare. However, there is money to be made in catering to pseudo-libertarian hackivist culture. Watching the pilot of Mr. Robot was as exhausting as it was irksome. Mr. Robot is not forgettable sanguine, mildly inoffensive, or fetishistic, and for network television, this makes it stand out.

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The First One is Free: Reviewing TV Pilots (Killjoys)

There are those moments you have to go hunting for new stories. Rarely can I get enough of books, comics, movies, games, tv shows, sport, and images; they dominate my day-to-day. I love narratives of all kinds and writing and talking about narratives is what makes us smarter, better people.

Recently, I decided to download some free pilot episodes of tv shows in an effort to get out of my Netflix rut. These were science fiction shows or speculative fiction, a genre that’s equal parts shitty and awesome.

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Who Would Play You In the Movie?: Casting My Fantasy Novel

I was fortunate to have Karen Oberlaender review my two non-magic fantasy novels, Adversaries Together and Winterfinding, this Spring. Hearing what a reader thinks is always delightful for a writer, at least for me it is. I love knowing that someone not only read the work but decided it was worth talking about. This is true whether it’s a positive or negative comment. Engaging with readers is fun.

Anyway, towards the end of Oberlaender’s review of my first book she asks, “If Adversaries Together was filmed–who should direct it, who could you imagine as actors?”

I know it’s silly but the question stuck with me. So I decided to answer it. Why do this? Well, at the very least it creates an image in the mind. One that aides in visualizing how these characters move, speak, and interact. When you have a proxy, it can make the story more vivid.

But also, it’s just a game; it’s fun.

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Foodiesphere: Sweet Potato Fun

Sometimes you don’t have much to work with, but you still need to eat. I’ve a small appetite, tending to only have one meal a day. Lately however I’ve been trying to reduce the amount of meat in my diet leading me to explore the world of root veg.

Garam Masala Sweet Potato and Bell Pepper

Today all I had was a diced sweet potato and a diced orange bell pepper. So, I poured some olive oil in a pan and began to saute them. Once the pepper was soft-ish (15-20 minutes), I added a pinch salt and ginger (less than a quarter teaspoon) as well as about half a teaspoon of garam masala. I made sure to get the spices mixed over the sweet potato and pepper as much as possible. Then I poured in a cup of water, turned the burner to low, and covered the pan. I checked on it ever ten minutes or so to make sure nothing was burning to the pan. After about 20-25 minutes I had a satisfying little lunch.

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Very orange & a good balance between sweet and savory, made about 2 servings

A few days before I had intended to make some shrimp dishes. One of them involved kale and sweet potatoes.

Sweet Potato, Kale, and Shrimp Skillet

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I wasn’t too pleased with how I did this one because I wasn’t patient enough to let the liquid cook off. Thus, it turned rather more wet than it should have. I thought about putting it over rice but the sweet potato was hearty enough on its own. Next time I’ll do better.

Ingredients

olive oil
½ onion, diced
Red pepper flakes, to taste
2 garlic cloves, minced
sweet potatoes, diced
2 cups fresh shrimp
3 cups trimmed and chopped kale

Directions

In the skillet, heat olive oil, then saute onion with red pepper flakes and garlic. Add sweet potato and cook until soft (15-20 minutes). Add a few tablespoons of water to help steam the sweet potato and cover. Add shrimp and cook until turn pink. Turn the heat down and add chopped kale, cook until wilted.

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Getting Back In The Game

A few months ago, I took a break from covering soccer. Well, not really a ‘few months ago.’ I decided that this season I would just be a fan. As the various soccer seasons have progressed (EPL, MLS, & NASL), I’ve often found myself wanting to write something but just not pulling the trigger. However, I decided this last month to give soccer writing another go. There were a few reasons why I stopped writing and a one big one for starting back up.

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