It’s a Gazebo!

It's a Gazebo!

It’s a Gazebo!

This is a bit of Roleplaying lore that’s been kicking around the Internet for as long as I can remember.

I found it going through my old documents in the loft as I was sorting out something for a campaign soon to start 🙂

So I will put it here verbatum, copied from the original punched print out.

Eric and the Gazebo

by Richard Aronson

Let us cast our minds back to the early days of fantasy role-playing… In the early ’70s Ed Whitechurch ran “his game” and one of the participants was Eric Sorenson, a veritable giant of a man.
 
This story is essentially true: I knew both Ed and Eric, and neither denies it (although Eric, for reasons that will become apparent, never repeats it).
 
The gist of it is that Eric… well, you need a bit more about Eric.
 
Eric comes quite close to being a computer. When he chooses a game, he methodically considers each possibility before choosing his preferred option. If given time, he will invariably choose the optimum solution. It has been known to take weeks. He is otherwise in all respects a superior gamer, and I’ve spent many happy hours competing with and against him, as long as he is given enough time.
 
So… Eric was playing a neutral paladin (why should only lawful, good religions get to have holy warriors? was the rationale) in Ed’s game. He even had a holy sword, which fought well and did all those things holy swords are supposed to do, including good and evil (by random die roll). He was on some lord’s land when the following exchange occured:
 
 
ED: You see a well-groomed garden. In the middle, on a small hill, you see a gazebo.
ERIC: A gazebo? What colour is it?
ED: (Pause) It’s white, Eric.
ERIC: How far away is it?
ED About 50 yards.
ERIC: How big is it?
ED: (Pause) It’s about 30 feet across, 15 feet high, with a pointed top.
ERIC: I use my sword to detect whether it’s good.
ED: It’s not good, Eric. It’s a gazebo!
ERIC: (Pause) I call out to it.
ED: It won’t answer. It’s a gazebo!
ERIC: (Pause) I sheath my sword and draw my bow and arrows. Does it respond in any way?
ED: No, Eric. It’s a gazebo!
ERIC: I shoot it with my bow (rolls to hit). What happened?
ED: There is now a gazebo with an arrow sticking out of it.
ERIC: (Pause) Wasn’t it wounded?
ED: Of course not, Eric! It’s a gazebo!
ERIC: (Whimper) But that was a plus-three arrow!
ED: It’s a gazebo, Eric, a gazebo! If you really want to try to destroy it, you could try to chop it with an axe, I suppose, or you could try to burn it, but I don’t know why anybody would want to try. It’s a @#%$*& gazebo!
ERIC: (Long pause – he has no axe or fire spells) I run away.
ED: (Thoroughly frustrated) It’s too late. You’ve awakened the gazebo, and it catches you and eats you.
ERIC: (Reaching for his dice) Maybe I’ll roll up a fire-using mage so I can avenge my paladin…

At this point, the increasingly amused fellow party members restored a modicum of order by explaining what a gazebo is. This is solely and afterthought, of course, but Eric is doubly lucky that the gazebo was not situated on a grassy knoll.


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Rolls of £20 notes

I’m going to tell about something that happened when I gave up MTG for the first time, but I’m going to catch up with the gaming week.

It’s been a very quiet week on the gaming front, I’ve clipped 4 Cryptothralls out of their sprue but that’s been it.

Still finding it a challenge returning to any sort of gaming rhythm after so long away from it all and a lot of disappointments I’ve felt with Games Workshop over the last couple of years.

I’ve done a bit of sorting out in the shed though and have got models separated into two large categories. One pile are the models I’m keeping for my own armies and games, the other pile are the sprues that are going to be stripped to populate the shop on Ko-Fi.


Storage Box

Storage Box

But on with the story.

This case is about 42x48cm, though the ones I had were slightly longer and could hold many more cards than these.

The first time I played Magic the Gathering was at the end of Ice Age and started really casually but it really ticked all my collecting boxes.

I then started playing quite competitively at around Invasion, going to regular tournaments and all the qualifiers, winning loads of cards and always having to have the latest tech and best decks and this meant I had thousands of cards.

A lot of them at high value, very high value as I played all formats. I had twenty of these large boxes, plus many folders, deck boxes, and other bits of storage.

Then I suddenly lost interest in the game all together and could really do with a bit of cash, so I started listing everything I had then listed it on eBay and after a few false starts it sold for about £7K to a gentleman from Norway.

We discussed sending it across and he realised that it would be easier and cheaper for him to bring his son with him and get the ferry to Newcastle, it would also be quicker.

We arranged to meet at the petrol station at the Durham services, so I packed up the car and with my partner we set off.

We got to the services and met the buyer, we then started to transfer the boxes across to the boot of his car. Once we had finished this I was handed rolls of £20 notes, loads of rolls, a satisfying amount of rolls.

As we were driving back with a back seat covered in these rolls of £20 notes my partner noted that all our activity would have been recorded on CCTV and that it would probably have looked extremely dodgy.

Thankfully we never had a visit from the Durham Constabulary wondering why I was selling loads of guns/rifles to a Norwegian.


If you want to help and support this blog you could become a Patreon which would help pay for my hosting, domain names, streaming services, and the occasional bag of popcorn to eat while watching films.

If you can’t support with a monthly subscription a tip at my Ko-Fi is always appreciated, as is buying things from my Ko-Fi Shop.

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Meddling Kids

Edgar Cantero. Titan Books. (322p) ISBN 9781785658761

Meddling Kids

Meddling Kids

Scooby Doo meets Cthulhu, with a smattering of Evil Dead.

I had great hopes for Meddling Kids being a rollicking read with loads of adventure an chthonic mysteries, and do you know what? It delivered!

Ancient evils, intelligent dogs, creepy old people, friendly local sheriff, First Nation character, and reformed Jock, it had it all and a wee bit of Ken Kesey.

The pace was fast, but not so fast you couldn’t enjoy the witty dialogue, script sections and ghostly asides.

The characters were well-fleshed out (all apart from Peter that is), and Tim the Weimaraner was a nice touch.

The homage to various types of fiction was gentle, though very obvious at one point (Zoinx River) and made for a cracking good read.


If you want to help and support this blog you could become a Patreon which would help pay for my hosting, domain names, streaming services, and the occasional bag of popcorn to eat while watching films.

If you can’t support with a monthly subscription a tip at my Ko-Fi is always appreciated, as is buying things from my Ko-Fi Shop.

You can always email me on contact@bigbeardedbookseller.com with any suggestions.

Simply the Quest

Maz Evans. Chicken House. (384p) ISBN 9781910655511

Simply the Quest

Simply the Quest

Well, in the second book of Maz Evans series we find out that it is not only QEII that has an interesting skill set, the rest of the royal family has certain aptitudes and attitudes. Nice to know that everyone enjoys a good BBQ.

In Simply The Quest we follow Elliot in his quest for the rest of the Chaos Stones, but he has more than just Thanatos to deal with, Nyx the mother of Thanatos and Hypnos has decided it is time to intervene and she is a whole level more dangerous than anything Elliot and friends have faced before.

We also find out more about Elliot’s dad and the circumstances that have led him not to be around and this is one of the saddest parts of this instalment.

Elliot is joined by the usual gods and constellations in this adventure, but there are more heroic characters being explored throughout.

Neighbours and smelly History teachers are still around but with a devious twist.

Another emotional rollercoaster of an adventure with lots of humour and great characters.


If you want to help and support this blog you could become a Patreon which would help pay for my hosting, domain names, streaming services, and the occasional bag of popcorn to eat while watching films.

If you can’t support with a monthly subscription a tip at my Ko-Fi is always appreciated, as is buying things from my Ko-Fi Shop.

You can always email me on contact@bigbeardedbookseller.com with any suggestions.