25 May 2009

How come there's never enough time in the day for the fun stuff?

Do any of you have this somewhat rare (and expensive when you do find it) uniform guide in your book collection? I've found it any number of times in the past few years via Amazon Marketplace, but the price has always been just a bit dear.

Sigh. That about describes life over the past week or ten days. I've been teaching a daily May Term course on Scandinavian/Nordic film and basic film theory, which has been terrific fun given the mix of good students I have, but the almost daily reading (heavy) and preparation just seem to eat up any free time. The class meets for three hours at a time, so it's pretty intense as well, and I'm tired once I get home and change out of my jacket and tie. Then, there has been the typical summertime upkeep outdoors along with some things the Grand Duchess left for me to take care of.

And on top of that, the publisher with whom I worked on that translation last fall has sent me a list of minor corrections, suggested by the book's author, to make on the manuscript before the dummies are printed for final proofreading and editing later in the summer (the novel is scheduled to appear in English in late 2009). Nothing major, but of course this too has been, shall we say, somewhat time consuming. When it rains, it pours.

All of this has meant that the Saegewerkdorf game between Jeff Hudelson and me has been on hold. Neither has any appreciable painting taken place, though I did manage to snatch an hour on Saturday night late and start on those final 20 RSM Prussian fusiliers. As I usually do, I began by applying GW "Goblin Green" to the bases of the figures, which are all lined up on their plastic bottle caps behind me on the painting desk, awaiting their fleshtone, which is typically the color I apply next in the process.

On a slightly different note, I did take some time to make up two figure orders for Garrison Miniatures and Spencer Smith Miniatures respectively very, very late Saturday evening, once the cat and I had retired to bed, before I continued with my latest P.G. Wodehouse novel. So, I'll have one shipment of 30 Holger Eriksson cavalry and a couple of extra guns winging its way to our apartment in Berlin and another of about 26 Garrison artillery crew (enough for two 2-gun batteries with 12 crew and a mounted officer for each). And if the British and German postal systems cooperate, both packages should be waiting at the apartment when I arrive in Berlin on June 10th. Keep your fingers and toes crossed!

The Grand Duchess is doing very well by the way. We spoke for quite some time via Skype on Saturday. She is finding lots of material in the various archives she visits, including a piece that will allow her to finish a two -year old piece on East German disco films of the 1970s and 80s. In addition, she has had meetings with several German academics about one thing or another related to her research. Sonja and two of her former students, both of whom have been on exchange programs in Berlin, traveled to an "eco village" the other day, since one of my wife's research interests has to do with eco-criticism (re: Green criticism). And the Grand Duchess has also been able to catch up with a number of German friends, who she does not see very often. So, all in all, it sounds like everything is going well for her. And our cat Rannveig gets to enjoy sleeping on the far side of the bed in the meantime!

Ok, enough procrastination! It's back to the translation!


Sir William the Aged said...


Since I always enjoy helping someone else spend their money, you should also consider adding an infantry unit using either Garrison's "Attack March" or "Musket at High Port" positions, as both are slightly different than any of your other castings. They also have a wonderful "pugnacious" quality to them as regards facial detail, they look "determined", always a good thing with our troops.

They also offer De Saxe's Dragoons in their distinctive helmets in their French range which would make a lovely ImagiNation unit and they offer several historic command figures, like the Duc de FitzJames, Ferdinand of Brunswick, the Duke of Cumberland and the Marshal Contades that are all excellent little "portrait" figures. Garrison were known for some of their "character" figures back in the day.

And, if you do decide to do a battalion, Rob already offers discounted pricing on multiples of 10 figures and will usually work with you on the price for a large special order with similar figures. And he offers all of the necessary supernumaries like NCO's with halberd, officers, standard bearers and drummers. And in the Prussian Grenadiers, he even offers separate command figures for the Grenadiers. Many options for the Grand Duchy here!


OttoMunoz said...

It must be awesome being a teacher. I'm working on my college courses to get my Masters in either English or History so I can teach either or both at the University level.

I know it could be stressful but it its my long term goal for my schooling.

I like your blog.


David said...

Hi Stokes,

You sound busy! I have the Mollo book; I bought it when I was an undergraduate 31 years ago, for (I think) £3.25, which was a lot then, especially on student funds. It's one of my favourite nostalgia books on the period and has good information on the whole but some of the pictures are sadly spoiled by poor colour printing. They are rather stylish and nicely posed, though, as most are based on contemporary portraits and paintings. But I don't think you really need it, unless you can pick it up cheap.

Good luck with all the work and I hope you can get down to some serious wargaming soon - real life can be such a pain sometimes, getting in the way of the important things in life, like hobbies... ;-)

All the best,


littlejohn said...

Those Blandford books are a real treasure if you can get a hold of them. I have two copies of both the AWI, and the American Civil War versions, ...as well as WWI....If I can find them in my storage I'm going to put the extra copies up for sale to perhaps convert their value into more RSMs or some such 18th century metal!


guy said...

I would recommend the Mollo book as well. I bought mine years ago in a remainder box. I wasn't interested in the SYW then and it remained on my shelf until about 5 years ago. I have read various criticisms of this book (especially about the colours on the prints)but it is a v useful guide and I have built all sorts of units primarily because I first saw the soldier in the Mollo book.

By the way when you are in Berlin and visiting that model soldier shop, see if they stock the Art Miniaturen SYW range.


Snickering Corpses said...

I don't think I'm going to be able to look at Hussars von Cornflanske without thinking Hussars von Cornflakes.

Can we get a picture of the Garrison samples when you get a chance?

I keep eyeing that Mollo book, but like you I find it's always expensive. I do have Mollo's AWI book, which I used to check out of the library long ago, and finally found a copy of for myself cheaply.

Steve-the-Wargamer said...

It was the Mollo AWI book that single-handedly fired my interest in the period all those years ago... managed to find myslef a copy 4 or 5 years ago for £10 and considered myself happy!

PS. East German disco films?????? I have this mental image of John Travolta in an ushanka - tell me it isn't so! :o))

johnpreece said...

I bought my copy remaindered from a station bookstall at (I think)Leicester. Under £1 I think.

You can tell how long ago that was since a) you could still get around by train and b) I remember drinking several excellent pints of local Everard Tiger beer at the refreshments room together with a curly cheese sandwich from under a glass dome.

Happy days!

John Clements said...

Hi Stokes,

Another lucky guy who bought the Mollo book when it first came out and what a revelation it was at the time. I still use it as it often shows details other books don't mention.

Do look seriously at the Garrison range. I used them for all my armies when they first came out, to replace my plastic Spencer Smiths, and they are really good figures in detail and proportion. I'm sorry now that I sold them years ago. And Rob deserves support for the great job he's done in bringing them back onto the market.

Anonymous said...


I also have the Mollo book, but I can't remember how much I paid for it, it's so long ago since I bought it.
It's always been one of my favourites, packed with uniform detail and some super drawings.


tidders said...

I was going to buy a copy of Mollo a couple of years ago, but decided on spending my money on the two Funcken Lacewar volumes instead.

These useful books are getting rather expensive !

-- Allan

Bloggerator said...

I bit the bullet a few years ago and bought it for $AU24 and have no regrets!



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