Thursday, February 10, 2022

Not Everything's Connected (It Is, Though...)

Feeling super-lazy and uninspired today so I'm just going to throw out a few scraps and not even pretend there's a theme. If you usually skip the music posts, scroll down past the videos. Things get gamey down there. Also, honestly? The first part's not really about music. More about pets dying. So you might want to skip that anyway, if it's a trigger.

Everyone left good with that? Okay. Let's start with something sad.

We all like Best Coast, right? I mean, how could you not? They're like some kind of natural high. I've listened to plenty of their sun-fuzzed, out of focus tunes, although the only one I have in my files is this:

Snacks was Best Coast's Bethany Cosentino's cat but he was much more than that, as cats can be in this modern world. "He was not just my cat. He belonged to all of you. He was the third member of this band. Our mascot. Our cover star." she says. Now he's gone. Farewell Snacks. Sleep peacefully in the eternal California sun.

It might be I'm feeling a bit more alert than usual to potential pet trauma right now. There's been no animal in this house for quite a few years (Apart from those pesky mice that keep getting in through the pipes under the sink.) but we're getting a puppy in a few weeks (Well, Mrs. Bhagpuss is getting a puppy and that means I'm getting a puppy by association.) 

We have talked about getting a kitten at the same time so they'd grow up together but I think it might be a bit too much all in one go. Also, not to be morbid about it, but as the wonderful Pony Up put it...

... is that they die. Kind of puts you off getting involved in the first place, doesn't it? Although, heaven knows, it's hardly news to me. I've had enough pets that have died over the years. I'm not sure whether having two at a time would double the odds or halve them. It might be considered hedging your bets but then again it might just be reckless.

And at our age there's the ever more pertinent question of what happens if they outlive you? Like, I wonder what happened to Black Raoul? I'd never heard of Raoul until this morning but I'd heard of his owner, Pat Fish, sometimes known as The Jazz Butcher. I own at least one album by him and I saw him play live a couple of times. Pat, that is, not Raoul.

Raoul was Pat's cat and Pat died last year. I guess someone else feeds him now. Raoul, that is, not Pat. Despite being dead, The Jazz Butcher has a new album out this month, which is how these things work. I read a review of it right after I heard about Snacks. I imagine that's why one tiny fact buried in the meat of the piece popped out at me: "apparently the “Black Raoul” who Fish chants about is known to hardcore fans as his cat." And also to the rest of us, now.

I was never a hardcore fan of The Jazz Butcher (The name of the band, really, not its leader.) but there was a time I liked either him or them well enough to name my apazine after a lyric from one of their songs. I called it "Great Big Weather Kind of Outburst" because that's the kind of thing I thought was smart back then. And still do.

At least I think it was from one of their songs. Damned if I can remember which one and the internet's no help. Doesn't really matter, anyway. We were talking about Black Raoul and he gets his namecheck in the one I already linked.

Enough about dead pop stars and their cats. Or pop stars and their dead cats. Except to note that a) there are a lot of them b) there are more of them all the time and c) I could totally get another post out of this...

Change of subject.

Lost Ark is out this week. I know, because people have been writing about it and now they're playing it. Enough of them to bring Steam to its knees, apparently. And that's just in Early Access. Wait until the official launch tomorrow.

I have absolutely no interest in Lost Ark whatsoever. It's pretty much the poster child for "Games That Don't Interest Bhagpuss". (That was fun! Talking about yourself in the third person is tight! And so is stealing other peoples' catchphrases!) Even so, I've been bracing myself for an explosion of posts about the game across the blogosphere...

Hasn't really happened yet. Only a handful of people have mentioned it so far. I hadn't realised until I read Kaylriene's first impressions that Lost Ark was free to play. I'd assumed there'd be an up-front cost of some kind. And it's on Steam. I suppose that makes it marginally more likely I might end up trying it at some point but there's no room in my schedule right now even if I wanted to give it a go.

The final piece of news I propose to stuff screaming into this grab-bag of unrelated trivia is this. By the way, isn't it annoying, the way I'm hyperlinking all this stuff without context so the only way to find out what I'm talking about is to click through? I wonder if that's considered good practice or bad? I could see it going either way.

For those with mouse fatigue, here's the headline in question "Lord of the Rings & The Hobbit Movie Rights Up For Sale This Week" And here's the tag that follows "Amazon is considered a favorite to buy them.

It's all a tad confusing. There seem to be a lot of rights involved in the sale. The package "includes many movie, merchandising, gaming, and live event rights" and some of them don't seem to be exclusive. Depending which report you read, it seems the existing owners and operators of related properties and spin-offs shouldn't be affected. Maybe.

Where that leaves Standing Stone and Lord of the Rings Online, I guess we'll find out. If Amazon do end up winning the bidding war, I wonder if they might even bring that mmorpg they killed back to life? Or maybe TenCent will buy the rights and start it up again.

Something new for LotRO players to worry about, anyway. There's always something, isn't there?


  1. Stealing that catchphrase was super-easy: barely an inconvenience!

    Why the lack of interest in Lost Ark? I think I missed it somehow…

    1. I have a long-standing dislike for ARGs going back to when I bought Dungeon Siege when it came out, expecting it to be a real RPG. The appeal of loot explosions entirely escapes me - I almost always want fewer drops in mmorpgs, not more of them.

  2. I don't click, I hover and look at the status bar down at the bottom of the browser.

    Our Lola will be 12 soon. I've been working from home for like 9 years now so she and I spend about 23.5 hours/day together (PartPurple takes her for a half-hour walk every afternoon) and she make me laugh like 100 times/day. I have no idea how I'm going to cope when she is gone. She's kind of arthritic but otherwise still pretty sassy so I think we could have a few more years together, though.

    1. I do that too!

      Twelve is getting up there. The oldest cat I ever had was seventeen. No, wait... nineteen. When she died she was older than I was by several years.


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