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While putting on a white cleanroom underglove, I humorously imagine Mushrooms Demystified's identification key for the some of the Amanita group (something like, 'pleasant taste followed by unpleasant death within two weeks ...... Amanita Virosa').

Cool Words

balter (ball'-tur) v.t. 1: to tangle 2: to walk on clumsily v.i. 1: to become tangled 2: to dance clumsily

Haiku Reviews

The Man Who Wasn't There :)

The antithesis
of Sam Spade is a barber
who doesn't say much.

Daddy-O's Reviews


Zany British historian James Burke takes us on a journey around the world and through 12,000 years of human history, as he examines the invention of 8 everyday devices (the telephone, the computer, the television, plastics, etc) by studying the chains of connected historical events that eventually lead to those inventions. Burke not only makes history come alive in this 10 episode series, he also provides insight into the fundamental nature of change, and even challenges you to think anew about all the manufactured stuff we surround ourselves with, and now take totally for granted. Could you survive if they were all suddenly taken away from us? James Burke has done a number of similar series, but the original set of lessons, made in the late seventies, is the most compelling.

Tirade's Choice

The Condiment Packet Museum

"Chancing across Wunderland is like discovering a pocket of hippies that somehow have managed to fight off the cynicism of the past few decades and stay true to their ideals. This rich subculture is one of the things that makes Icehouse such an appealing game system." -- Ron Hale-Evans, in an article on Game Systems posted to

Thursday, December 6, 2001
by the Wunderland Toast Society

What's New?

What's Going On? Arriving Late at Invisible Milestones

For months now we've been toiling away on two major projects in particular: Playing with Pyramids, the new book of 12 Icehouse games, and the new software system we've been calling the Wunderlist, which will provide front-to-back functionality for our online shopping center, doing everything from generating the shopping cart pages to maintaining online inventory records and updating them as orders are received and shipped.

As I've noted before, both of these projects are disappointingly behind schedule; both were supposed to be done by now. Otherwise however, both projects are going extremely well. This week we finally completed the last of the elements we've been writing and creating for the book, and yesterday we mailed out copies of the current manuscript to a dozen proof-readers and playtesters, who'll be checking it over for us before it goes off to the actual book printers. And let me tell you, it is looking GREAT. I'm really looking forward to releasing it!

Meanwhile, the Wunderlist is also reaching milestones that are invisible to the outside observer. We've got the new website up and running on our in-house network, and take my word for it, this too is looking really great. Dale has been putting in a lot of time tailoring and integrating the work VanSam has been doing for us, and while there's still a lot to finish up before it'll be ready to launch, the new sites are coming along splendidly.

And while it's definitely a drag that the busy holiday shopping season is now underway and we still don't have the automated order processing system in place that we still hope to have running by the end of the year, we nevertheless have to be happy that a) sales have really started rolling in, and b) we did at least succeed in outsourcing the packing and shipment of orders prior to now. Still, it sucks being late, since instead of having this time to work on promoting sales, Kristin is instead having to spend a lot of her time continuing to process orders herself.

Also, with the new shopping cart we're working to add a couple of new "stores" to our shopping center:, specializing in really great games that aren't made by "dreamer" companies, and the Random Emporium, where we can showcase and sell just about anything else we might decide to add to our online shopping experience. (We'll also be adding a boutique called the Dangling Carrot, but that will only be open to the Mad Lab Rabbits.)

Since we haven't even finished building the framework yet, we certainly haven't had time to do much in the way of populating these new stores; when they open, they'll have just a few starter items each.

But there's one game we've been wanting to start selling so badly that we went ahead and made it available through our old shopping cart: It's Klunker, the game we prefer to call Schaufenster, also known as the Most Popular Game at Wunderland Not Made By Us. It's the game we like so much we named our new eStore after it (sort of). Check out Gina's great review if you aren't already convinced to buy it by now.

And come back again soon to see these invisible projects when they materialize!

AndyHave you played any games today?

the story so far

Thought Residue
"Best is the enemy of Good." -- A saying I adopted from Jay Costenbader back when I was at TSI, which struck my sister-in-law Ruth's fancy during her recent visit to town
Is there a candy bar that features chocolate, caramel, and almonds? Settle for peanuts instead and you've got a Snickers bar; or cover pecans with chocolate and caramel and you get one of my favorite treats, Fannie May brand Pixies (they're even better than Turtles). However, the only way I know of to enjoy the unique blend of chocolate with caramel and almonds is to unwrap both a Rolo and an almond Hershey's Kiss, and pop 'em into your mouth at the same time.
"There was a full lunar eclipse that evening, and our games were constantly being interrupted as people went trudging out into the snow to watch its progress. In a scene which will be forever etched in my memory, John called out in frustration to a group of players who were heading for the door yet again: 'The students are not allowed to leave the classroom!'
'But Master,' replied Andy as he shuffled out with the rest, 'there is a demon eating the moon!'" -- Kory's Design History of Zendo


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