Geek Culture

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How I’m Spending My Time These Days

Things on Tribe Collecting have been a little slow lately, but I’m still being productive. A lot of my energy is being directed towards The Lord of the Rings the Card Game that I started playing this summer. The game is so much fun and I can’t help but infectiously get my friends playing, too. I have mentioned it here before. I am part of the WWPD Fellowship where we create playthrough videos of the game, write articles, and have just launched our first podcast! Here’s a link to the podcast: You can also download it on itunes – search for WWPD app. As of this posting, we were breaking 100 downloads. Not too shabby! In the podcast you can find out why I like this game so much and what initially attracted me to it.

What’s the WWPD? A website created by Steven McLauchlin that has become one of the foremost authorities on the game Flames of War, a tabletop miniatures wargame by Battlefront and covers other wargames as well. I met Steven because of this site and my shared interest in Flames of War. See my post on Rob Turner’s blog about visiting the Battlefront factory in Malaysia.  Through a shared love for LOTR LCG  Steven, Parker, and I, all FoW players, formed the WWPD Fellowship. It started with playing and recording games on a virtual desktop and branched out into writing articles and now podcasting about this terrific game.

I invite you to take a peek at how I’ve been spending my time these days, here’s a comprehensive list of my LOTC LCG endeavors:


Outpost Zero


WWPD Fellowship playlist

Let’s Play Lord of the Rings LCG playlist





Phew, now that I listed that all out, it seems kind of exhausting!


Tribe collecting score: 8

  • Lord of the Rings
  • Card Games
  • Miniatures Games
  • Wargaming
  • Gaming Videos
  • Gaming Blog
  • Gaming Podcast

Minimalist Tech Travel Part Two: The Best Carry-on Complement

I took a minimalist approach for my travel adventure in February. My goal was to bring only one carry on bag AND pack all essentials for a two-week trip to Southeast Asia. Thus I embarked on a quest to find some awesome gear so I could carry everything I needed with me in the airplane cabin. I also wanted my tech items easily accessible to keep me occupied on the long plane rides. Read about my first investment here: Zuca carry-on. My second investment was the Scottevest Chloe Glow Hoodie.

Chloe Glow Hoodie in Ember

Chloe pocket illustration. Photos from Scottevest and Think Geek

This cool X-Ray image from Think Geek, where I got mine in “Ember” red, shows all the pockets with items inside. The item was on for a great sale and has become an important stable in my wardrobe. I knew the hoodie would not be perfect for the warm weather I am going to be in, but knew also that I would get more regular use out of it than I would a travel vest, for example. The hoodie was perfect for the plane, since I tended to get chilly. In fact, I used the Chloe daily all winter and spring after I got it instead of a carrying a purse. It has 13 pockets with suggestions as for what each pocket could be used for. Here’s what I packed in the Chloe for the plane and I didn’t even use every pocket:

  1. passport
  2. boarding tickets
  3. mobile phone
  4. ear buds
  5. glasses
  6. chapstick
  7. wet naps
  8. kashi bars
  9. keys
  10. cash
  11. ID
  12. credit cards
  13. pill box
  14. pen
  15. stylus
  16. paperback book

More features

The hoodie has dedicated pockets for a camera, extra memory cards, a small tablet, and glasses with an attached chamois cloth. There’s a system in place to run your ear buds into the hood so there are no dangling wires.  The best thing about the hoodie is I don’t feel like I have all of that in my pockets; I don’t look bulky and it fits comfortably. The hood zips all the way up so I can cover my face if I need to catch some Zs in the airport. Going through security was a breeze – I just put my hoodie into a bin and my carry on the conveyor. I also felt secure carrying all my important documents with me because most of the pockets are inside the clothing, so it’s less likely that someone can pickpocket you. I was in Thailand during a political upheaval so making sure my passport was safe was very important in case I needed to prove my citizenship to my consulate.

Scottevest Obsession

After I decided on the Chloe, but before I purchased, I checked out the Scottevest site. They have really cool stuff and I wanted everything! SeV has clothes with enough pockets for all the things I need to carry with me so of course this quest cued a Scottevest obsession that has since seen me purchase 2 more items (Molly [17  pockets!] & Trench). My enthusiasm has rubbed off on my friends who love the items as well. Scottevest is part of my zombie apocalypse plan – I won’t need to fill my pockets with tech, but they will suit just as well for various smaller accouterments needed for survival. Tribe collecting score: 3

  • Gadgets
  • Travel
  • Questing

Minimalist Tech Travel Part 1: The Perfect Carry On Bag

I took a minimalist approach for my travel adventure in February. My goal was to bring only one carry on bag, packing the essentials for a two-week trip to Southeast Asia. Thus I embarked on a quest (I’m always on a quest!) to find the perfect carry on bag. That in turn led me on a side quest to find some awesome gear so I could carry all my tech with me in my pockets.

After a ton of research I settled on the Zuca Pro Travel. This thing is so cool! I got my awesome bag with a black frame and a dark purple liner bag making it even more epic. It’s basically an aluminum alloy frame with a liner of your choice that creates the ultimate overhead carry on. The frame holds up to 300 pounds so you can use it as a seat. It’s very lightweight and also comes with a matching cover that takes care of zipper pulls so you can check it in if you want.

Mine came with 5 mesh pouches of different depths that stack inside of the bag, which opens high school locker style in the front. The pouches are colour coded so it will be easy to live out of my suitcase. If I leave everything in its place, then I  can be sure I haven’t left anything behind when I see all five pouches repacked. I couldn’t wait to use it, so I packed a bit early. Here’s what I packed for the two-week trip.


I tried to make most of the clothing match each other so I could get a good combination of outfits with fewer items. I got about 13 combinations, not counting the little sweater and the clothes I’ll be wearing on the plane. Everything is pretty much wrinkle free and quick dry fabrics. The yoga pants and tank top will do double duty as pajamas.

Bottom pouch

Pouch #1 Bottom pouch:
1 tank top – grey
5 underpants
1 pantyhose
2 pairs of socks

Pouch #2

Pouch #2
1 small cardigan – dark pink
1 dress – black/white pattern
1 sleeveless collared shirt – black
2 pairs of shoes (sandals and flats)

Pouch #3

Pouch #3
Ponte, yoga type pants – black
Cargo pants – army green
1 blouse sleeveless top – green pattern
1 short-sleeved blouse – dark pink pattern
1 hat extra bra

Pouch #4 (no image) Hair brush, cosmetics, sunglasses, earplugs, toothbrush, deodorant.

Pouch #5 I did not use and had room for souvenirs.

Liquids and Gels bag on the top.

Here it is all packed up.

Here it is all packed up.

It has pockets everywhere – I counted 8 on the outside alone and there is also an organization system in the locker door and a mesh hammock on the ceiling. The other items I packed in the pockets, etc:

  • a fabric bag suitable for check in on the way back
  • tablet
  • dual USB portable charger
  • 2 magazines
  • charging cords



This bag stood up to the abuse of long walking detours along uneven pavement (blame the Shut Down Bangkok protests and riots), was my seating in long lineups in airports, and fit in the overhead for all of my flights. I even had a security check and knew exactly which pouch to locate. The official said he’d never had a faster check.

It’s been several months since my trip and I’ve since taken it to three more countries. I absolutely love this bag.

Tribe collecting score: 3

  • Gadgets
  • Travel
  • Questing