This is a page to appreciate my favorite pieces of media produced by others. I could geek out for ages about every entry on this list, but I'll try to keep the descriptions relatively concise.

Favorite Books:

Bradbury is best known for his full novels, particularly Fahrenheit 451. However, I much prefer his short stories, as they are just as philosophically reflective but in a snappier package. The Illustrated Man is my favorite of his short story collections, and it is book that inspired me to pursue writing Science Fiction myself.

The textbook on board game design. It analyses how we as humans interact with games, and how we as game designers can craft our games given this knowledge. I found it very informative for honing my own game-making craft.

An excellent delve into the psychology of how humans process music. It looks at music from statistical and evolutionary perspectives, breaking down how the numerical patterns common to the structure and motion of our music evoke tension and release by playing on human expectation.

Most parodies get their laughs by punching down at their parent genre. The Discworld series parodies fantasy by epitomizing the genre. It embraces everything fantasy has to offer (and takes by force what it doesn't) to provide witty humor as a framework for thoughtful social commentary. Over Thanksgiving, my family and I listen to audiobooks of his works while cooking the holiday dinner together, which makes for wonderful family time. Going Postal is the book that hooked me on the Discworld series as a whole, and is my recommendation on where to start.

Favorite Music:

I love listening to music. Here's my Spotify liked songs playlist. Be sure to put it on shuffle before playing to get a nice smattering of my favorite genres.

Due to however my brain is wired, my favorite music tends to be songs with prominent minor tonality. While I appreciate major chords as they play in contrast to minor ones, songs sporting solely major chords don't stimulate my emotions. I have met one other person who shares this musical disposition, which makes me wonder what the psychology behind one's music tastes is. Is it personality based? Is it what you first heard as a child?

Regardless of from whence this preference came, I find songs from every genre to meet my musical taste. Jazz, rock, classical, metal, synth, flamenco, you name it.

Favorite Board Games:

Whenever you put 3 or more agents in a game, "politics" (ganging on the person in first, negotiating, kingmaking, etc.) become an unavoidably dominant part of the game. Whereas some genres such as Eurogames work to minimize the effects of social politics, Cosmic Encounter embraces them. Every mechanic is crafted to facilitate the negotiation and backstabbing between asymmetric, unbalanced alien armies.

What board games lack compared to their cool younger brother of Video Games is adrenaline. However, Captain Sonar doesn't just acheuive the same level of adrenaline as a videogame, but surpasses it. The game pits two teams of 4 people in a real-time scramble to synchronize fast-paced actions that let them track down and torpedo the opposing team. Wow does this game evoke frantic adrenaline and stress in the best way possible.

If you have a thousand dollars in a bidding game, that means a thousand different numbers you could bid. Even if you know around how much an item is worth to you, your brain settling on a specific number often requires a heavy subconscious mental load that slows the game down, especially if bidding goes back and forth multiple times. Ra elegantly simplifies this process by giving each player 3 chips, with small, medium, and large values. You choose one of those three to bid or none at all. This drastically increases the pace of bidding, and lets you focus your mental energy on evaluating your strategy as a whole, rather than agonizing over exactly how what number you'll stop bidding at.

My favorite party game. It's Telephone, but with drawings instead of words. While the game comes with a deck of drawing prompts, those are a trap; the only righteous way to play is by having everyone come up with their own goofy prompts.