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the zaffre zone: title cards, joaos, and other oddities


when I said "no deal" what I meant was "no, deal"


MASS - 0.0039 M⊕ or 25.99 M⚳

IVANHOE is the largest satellite of MESORI, itself the twelfth major satellite of the star NEW MONTEGA BAY. MESORI is an ice-ball with few convenient resources and accordingly the Martian People's Council did not assign it or its satellites a high priority for exploration or investigation. This chain of reasoning seems demonstrably flawed in hindsight. First close approach was in 2656, when ice trawler DIGORY KIRKE sent transmission noting "unusual topography, especially pronounced in highlands - not necessarily of natural origin"

DIGORY KIRKE subsequently exchanged series of messages with nearby ship UNSS TULSIDAS - last message received was "have begun to sketch" followed by comms silence. UNSS TULSIDAS arrived on scene to find scattered debris, subsequently identified as DIGORY KIRKE. Wreckage demonstrated signs of tremendous shear force and abnormal deformation to head and hands of remaining crewmen, suggesting kernel drive of DIGORY KIRKE had engaged in non-uniform way.

UNSS TULSIDAS completed forensics report and transmitted in its entirety, along with topographic map, to nearest Martian settlement, NEW PALEMBANG. One hour later sent codicil to report. Codicil stated "IT IS THE KEY. WE ARE THE DOOR." UNSS TULSIDAS engaged kernel drive at 15 min after final transmission. Did not reappear.

All crew presumed dead.



when I said "no deal" what I meant was "no, deal"
having awoken from an absinthe-related sojourn:

uh huh, the one with the oval leather ball and

yes, football

as portrayed in the story Cargo, m'lud

(the vignette invitation is open to you too, by all means, I just know you haven't been as interested in the book source material stuff)

I do hope you come to a meet-up one day Zaffre.
It would be very, very good!
He will have to wait till his number comes up in the lottery of 'random Americans who bizarrely turn up to a London meetup'.
Will definitely try to if I'm ever in the UK - think everyone's who's met me in NYC can confirm that I'm very boring in person but still A Good Egg


Adam's Family
Published by SLP
The Sand Heaps
uh huh, the one with the oval leather ball and

yes, football

Actually, I'm reminded of this story by @Gryphon from 2015, which features a chapter that details exactly how much the planet the main characters are visiting is in the pocket of a few capitalists/warlords - including, at the very end, the fact that they own baseball teams that are just straight-up named for them. The piece turned out less useful than I was expecting for this - that last part had stuck in my mind for some reason, but it's basically how Japanese baseball works, so it's not even that weird.

In any case, I'm an absolutely crap sports writer, but I can provide my usual service of wildly speculating back and forth with no real focus.

A question we need to answer is how exactly the tournament is constructed. Do we have clubs owned by the economic players or some sort of "national" teams representing individual asteroids? Undoubtedly it'd make more sense logistically to have local teams, but OTOH, I don't really see an amateur cup gaining much ground in the economic climate of the Belt - maybe as an internal OPA thing.

There's also the question of gravity, which isn't that much of an issue when dealing with Earth/Mars competitions as it is when gravity is a yes/no dichotomy. I don't even know how football would work in zero-g (handball or basketball OTOH might work better), let alone how to settle the difference when a team from Ceres with its 1/6g meets a team that's literally never trained down a well before.


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Auckland via London
You'd lose the ball in no time unless it was in some sort of cage, surely?

Think Blitzball from Final Fantasy X if you've ever played that, but without using arms - remember in football, contact is allowed with any part of your body except lower arms pretty much, unless you're the keeper in his box.

Also the goal would probably have to be set back in the centre of the cage rather than at the bottom if everyone is floating around