Regard that elephant drawn gun!
I am continually astonished by the generosity of what I have come to call "the Freemasonry of the Hobby". I received an email just the other day from a fellow wargamer named Nick from San Francisco, who wrote to tell me that since I seemed to have a yen for Ghurkas, he had some going spare. Not only are they painted, but apparently they will be supported by a mountain gun.
I was very surprised by Nicks extremely generous gesture, though I suppose in some ways I should not. The wargaming fraternity has shown itself prone to these sorts of kind acts over the years. Wargamers who are separated by time and tides have repeatedly shown themselves willing to volunteer their time and their precious model soldiers to one another.
I have sent a few of those packages myself on occasion, but it seems to me that I always reap rather more than I sow.
Appropriate headgear is a necessary adjunct to any properly organised wargame
Nick has sent some pictures of his recent Sword and the Flame games. This was based on the final scene of the film "Gunga Din" and depicts an assault on a Thugee temple.
What really strikes me about these pictures is the composition of the table. The figures, the terrain and the whole set up both work as a game, but are also pleasing to the eye. The colour palette fits, the table is not too crowded with troops and the whole thing has a sense of balance and a sense of proportion that is very pleasing.
Advancing with the sword and the flame
Though I also like the fact that this is clearly a game in play. Nick's table and setup may be beautiful (and it is), but it is also a thing to be used and played with. I sometimes find the succession of beautiful pictures of figures on beautiful landscapes in the wargames press as little dispiriting sometimes, because at times they feel a bit divorced from the hobby as I experience it.
Admittedly, that experience usually involves some Crimean Russian grenadiers masquerading as line infantry, a cat draped around the Pathan fortress and a forgotten sherry glass obscuring the gunners field of fire, but Nicks game pictures are not without the odd dice stubbornly sneaking into the pictures.
Infantry advance supported by lancers
Nick was also generous enough to write some very kind words about "Joy & Forgetfulness" as a blog, which I shall not repeat here for fear of giving myself a big head, but thank you very much.
A very impressive Thugee Temple
I think I may have to slip a mild relaxant or something in Capability Savage's cooking laudanum. He may get very ambitious if he sees this Thugee temple. These fay artistic types are prone to sudden fits of enthusiasm.
I think I see Gunga Din sounding the alarm from the top of the tower.
Representin' and keepin' it real
There is one point of Nicks that I would like to address before I finish this post. In his email, Nick wrote;
"[...]I find it difficult to believe that you're still in your thirties;
your writing feels more mature, even Edwardian ;)."
Some of those gentle readers who are kind enough to give "Joy & Forgetfulness" their attention seem to be under the impression that it is a relic of a mythical bygone age. An elegant blog from a more civilized time, if you will. They are sadly mistaken.
"Joy & Forgetfulness" is as gritty a slice of urban realism as one could wish for. It is as raw, street and so close to the bleeding edge that it is in serious danger of cutting itself. I know that I do not always publish explicit content - but that is only because I do not wish to make the blog entirely unsuitable for those of a delicate or excitable nature (wives, servants, Frenchmen, etc).
Now, if you'll forgive me, I must go and see my man Du Gourmand about hip hop the hippie the hippie, to the hip hip hop and we won't stop, then rock it to the bang, bang boogie, say up jump the boogie the the rhythm of the boogie, the beat.
Because, what you read is not a test, I'm bloggin' to the beat,
and me, Du Gourmand, and our chums are gonna try to make your game elite,
You see, I am Conrad Kinch and I'd like to say "hello"
To the black, to the white, the red and the brown, the purple and yellow,
But first, I gotta blog, blog the bloggie...
...and that's quite enough of that...
...I think I may have to lie down for a moment. I've come over rather queer.