The Blog of Michael T. Murphy and his lifelong obsession with "little army men" and their imaginary glory, miniature wargaming, and other things...

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Of gaming and this and that...

The gaming side has been quiet as I haven't played in a while, and my painting has been really slow. I'm still working on the AK47 figs, and hopefully by the weekend will be FINALLY able to finish my fourth (And final) urban block of downtown Bongolesia, (appropriately named "Funkytown")...

My supply list is growing: I need
1: More white glue.
2: A better XActo knife.
3: Catalyst for my moulding and casting projects....

grrr...curse having three hobby stores (Jo Anns, Michaels and Hobby Lobby) and NONE of them carries the catalyst that I need for my moulding and casting!

It's a conspiracy I tell you...

Other things that I want to talk about.

I love gaming, I really do, and it breaks my heart to have to see companies announce that they are raising their prices due to the cost of fuel, postage, transportation and material costs. Yes, resin AND metals have gone up, and it will only be a time before plastics go the same way. If you CAN support your local store, please do so, and push your support for the companies also. That being said, if companies like GW keep raising prices, even their fanboys will eventually stop buying, (Except for the diehard fools)...
Our hobby is changing due to external influences in world resources. It's been a while in coming but now it's hitting us in the pocketbook....

Friday, August 15, 2008

145th Gettysburg Pics

Well, I don't have any updated gaming stuff to show you dear reader, so I thought that I would share with you some of the pics that I took and had taken during the recent 145th Gettysburg Reenactment this past July.

It was the largest reenactment I have ever EVER seen and despite the humidity, the battles were hard fought. Unfortunately there were cases of heat exhaustion due to the excessive humidity. More on that as we go...

This was my home away from home for the days there. A 2 man "dog" tent. It does have some of the "comforts of home" well hidden in it (an igloo cooler with nice cold drinks!).

My good friend Dan and I made it our "journey", and we had a blast. It was a great way to renew the fact that we had been friends for over 20 years!

Since those long ago gone days of when we were in Germany.

Strangely enough, we had some rain on Thursday night. Since we were camping outside in the open, we didn't get much water and stuff dried out quite quickly, unlike our pards who decided to sleep in the woods and ended up soaked.

Yeah yeah, yours truly sitting on his butt doing KP and cutting up potatoes for supper for Dan and myself. Believe it or now we worked quite well together, and with the food we brought we ate better than just about anyone there.

Who says that you have to survive on hardtack and coffee? I like my ribeyes medium rare...mmmmmm....iron skillet cooked ribeyes on an open flame...yum yum yum...

Friday was the first day of the event and there were two battles. Our brigade participated in the second one where we got hit the yankees harder than they expected. Below is a picture of my very first prisoner EVER taken in all my years of reenacting! A nice fine Captain of Co. A 5th Ohio Infantry. I touched his shoulder told him he "was mine", and then we had our photo taken while the fight was still going on! In the background right over my shoulder you can see Dan yelling for the Yanks to "get some".

The unit before the battle...This is Co. K 44th Tennessee. They were originally part of the unit that I am attached to Co. A 33rd Va, but due to differences, broke off and became their own unit.

Most of them are pretty good folks, and I like fighting with them.

After the rain on Friday night, Saturday was just too damn humid for Dan and Me, so we farbed out and did the town and the battlefield. It was my first trip to Gettysburg and walking that battlefield is stepping on hallowed ground. Everywhere you look are monuments and markers to the men that fought and died here, and the feeling that you get is one of overwhelming emotion.

This is me at the Virginia Monument.

After wandering the battlefield, Dan and I did the "town" (a little bit). I grabbed a couple of t-shirts and some trinkets and then we had real "Farb food", at O'Rorkes. Here's a picture of my lunch that day...mmmmmm... Another pic of myself at the Monument to The Confederacy...
It's amazing who you will meet at Gettysburg and to prove that it's a small world...allow me to tell you a little story...
That evening Dan and I wandered into the Lincoln Diner...(Yeah that guy is everywhere!), to grab some supper.

Yeah the guy is everywhere...Honest Abes House O' Eats...come on in...Confederate Money NOT accepted...
The menu to this house of culinary delights. Notice the blatant smirk on his face as he waits for you to order the meat loaf or the chicken tenders with fries...
So we order.
As we are sitting there three people walk in; a young man dressed in Confed. Uniform, a lady and a guy bringing up the rear. I look at the guy and think "DAMN...that guy looks like Dan Bennett."
Dan was a good friend of mine and my indirect supervisor when I was at CCSN back in Las Vegas. He's always been a wonderful person to work with and to get to know. We had a great relationship and keep in touch. I'm thinking that there is "NO way" that this can be him. I mean...what are the odds?
But what the hey...
So when I am in line, he walks past me and I say "Dan?...Dan Bennett?"
He stops looks over at me, takes a second and then you can see the recognition on his face.
We grab one another in the diner like long lost brothers. He took me back to meet his lady and her son, (In the 12th Tenn), and it capped off the night.
I mean...truly it is a small world when two friends, five states apart, meet each other in a totally different state in a diner in a small town.
And here's the pic to prove it.
Dan usually pulls for the Yankees, but I've forgiven him for this transgression...

Sunday morning...up and at 'em...starting to break down and get ready to leave, but then we have morning formation and orders. General Pickett is to advance his division on the Union Center. It's the third day at Gettysburg...and we all know what is coming.
But it still has a hum in the air...

The Confederates wait to march down the road to assault the Union...the dark blue line waaaaaayyy up on that hill...

A close up of some of the line....waiting for their move to glory...
Oddly enough I have very few still pics of the third day and Picketts charge. Instead I had mostly video as I had the camera mounted and running.
The guns went off...a ferocious pounding of sixty odd cannons for almost an hour. Then we moved forward. Closer and closer we marched, a mass of grey and butternut, our canteens bouncing, cups clanging, grit and determination in our eye. The first rank went in, and started taking hits. We got to the fence and started firing. The smoke rose in a thick blanket, as we poured fire into the yankees and they poured fire back. The man next to me went down. I found myself singing "Amazing Grace" while firing and then noticed three or four more joining in. It was a humbling moment. Then, Capt. Reger yelled for us to "Tear that fence down!" and we went to it like a pack of devils. The wood came down and the command to move forward went out, and across the ground we went, to our glory.
We started taking hits and men dropped. I took a "graze" and stumbled but the Capt was right next to me and we took some more steps forward before we both went down in a volley. I laid there, wounded (camera running), and saw the next wave pass over me. I could see the men up to the front, dying in masses...Great God Almighty what a sight!
And then it was over...the attack was shattered. The fight ended.
And gladly...we all got up and came home. None of the "deaths" were real, and there would be no graves dug that night for Union or Confederate boys to lay in.
Gettysburg is a place that should be seen to be felt. You can read about it, look at pictures, talk about it, and study it, but until you physcially walk the ground you cannot even begin to understand and fathom the sheer folly, foolishness, and bravery of those men that fought here.
Indeed it is a hallowed place...

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Industrial Progression, and Law Enforcement...scenics!

Well it's been a few busy days for me here, as I am in the process of job hunting and doing the interview thing. Plus I have an ACW event this upcoming weekend in Knightstown, so I doubt if I will get much gaming stuff done, and more stuff for the little old site here.
However here are some recent things I have finished this past weekend.
First off, the sign for "Perverticus Industries", and their newest acquisition...ahem..."slightly used" Storage Tanks!
For more information on this, check out for all the juicy details.

(Ahhhh yes...the smell and sights of "Progress in 3rd World Nations...far from those pesky health and environmental regulations that so slows things down...)

(Really...just cut the grass, add a little paint here and there, and no one will notice the seepage into the ground, or the green stuff dripping...)

(Even third world hellholes needs some form of "Law Enforcement", and what better way to "Keep Law and Order" without a Police Station, complete with chain link fencing over the windows...)
(Unfortunately the police are often busy and can't be bothered to keep their building looking spic and span...)
I'll be truthful though. The police station was an idea that I borrowed from another site, and it was one of those 'yeah yeah whatever projects", you know, the kind that is always there and waiting to be worked on and finished, but you just put it aside and then find yourself working on it when there is absolutely NOTHING else to work on...
But it's done now.
I'm hoping to get some pics of my scratchbuilt ship up soon and some more pics of my figs. The 15mm ones are coming along quite nicely, and I look forward to working on the pulp figs here real soon!

Friday, August 8, 2008

What's on the Painting Table?

Well, it's Friday and time for me to update this thing here. I got up early today and got myself on a painting binge. I decided to get some figs on the table and some paint on the figs. Lord knows it's been a while and some of my stuff was getting pretty dusty...
After putting the figs on that I need to paint "for this round", I did a quick count.
  • 159 15mm Peter Pig AK47 Figures in various states of completion.
  • 10 28mm Pulp figs in various states of completion.
  • 3 20mm Vietcong (local).
  • 3 28mm Old West Gunfighters.
TOTAL: 175 figs...
And that's just the tip of the iceberg!
So I decided to get some photos, so I can do the "before" and "after" stuff.
Here's the first photo, showing the entire group on the table.

Figs that need painting...just this round...yeesh!

Can you ever REALLY have enough 15mm figs???

Not just personnel but support weapons too!

15mm Peter Pig Media and 15mm Rebel Minis Zombies...(Zombies???...oh dear)

15mm Sniper, 20mm VC, 28mm Pulp figs and 28mm Cowboys...what an eclectic bunch!

I was also able to get some other things finished this morning and will be getting their photos onto the Bongolesia website since they are specifically Bongolesia oriented.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Larry is my type of guy...

Okay so in all forms and fashion, we poor gamers have our own comic strip.
Ladies and gentlemen, I present to you, Larry Leadhead...

Strangely enough, so much of what he says I have found myself saying...

What does that mean?...oh dear...

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

My favorite games...

Okay now dear reader...Now that this thing is "officially launched", lets get down to business.
My favorite games (in miniature), are the following:
1: AK47 Republic (15mm).
2: Charlie Company (20mm Vietnam).
3: 15mm American Civil War. ( I still use the old "Rally Round The Flag rules), but have figs based for JRII/JRIII and F&F instead.
4: GUTSHOT! (Well duh!)
5: Pirate Games
6: Pulp Games
7: 1/285 Modern Micro Armor, (wish I could find a good set of rules out there...)

As you can see I am pretty much all over the place when it comes to games. When it comes to them, I would still like to get into:
2: SYW
3: 28MM Moderns
4: Age of Sail
5: Colonials
6: WWI Aerial
7: WWI in general
8: WWI-WWII Naval Warfare...

Yes..sadly enough, it's true. One can spend an entire lifetime devoted to these little figures and systems and never "Have enough". But that's the glory of it.

Greetings and The Very First Post!!!

Wow...thanks to the fine fellows at TMP, (Der Alte Fritz, Lord Ashram, and others), whose creative talent and genius have inspired me to do the same thing...start yet another miniature gaming blog!
And here we are.

This blog is going to simply be a chronicle of my adventures, misadventures, quest for glory, ridiculous vanity, and life in general. Althought mostly focused around this life-long obsessive hobby of mine, (Which the fairer sex calls "Little Toy Soldiers", when in reality we know they are called "Historical Miniature Figurines") that is known as "Historical Miniature Wargaming, I will also foray off into things such as ACW reenacting, road trips, and things in life in general that make living the better for it, (such as fine wines, rums, good food, and the good cigar!).

Please feel welcome to visit this site at anytime and comment. This site is as much for you dear reader as it is for me.