This, the 23rd retelling…

We went to my Mom’s in Houston for Thanksgiving this year. The weather was rainy and the kids went a bit stir crazy but we had a good time. We also had a small Friendsgiving the Sunday before; it’s a great feeling to have a house full of kids and friends around the kitchen island spinning stories. I’m thankful for my friends and family.

I resurfaced my interest in Qawwali music this month enjoying Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and the Nooran Sisters. I love it. The mix of storytelling and improv which has the potential to produce something like this…

Indistinguishable from a Fleet Foxes song if you ask me. Sitting on the floor with your buds, harmonium and tablas, singing and echoing phrases, and people throwing money at you; seems like a sustainable music business model to me. I’d love to be in a band like this. I’m thankful for people who make interesting music.

I blogged about it, but this month I got into playing piano with the help of some beginner piano books. Am I good? No. Do I play hit all the right notes? Also, no. Am I getting better? I think so. Am I having fun? Yes. And that’s what matters to me. I’m thankful for a house that appreciates me butchering Christmas tunes and sometimes sing along.


Okay, the real reason you’re here….

📖 Reading

I finished 8 books this month, a mix of comics, short reads, and regular books.

  • Do Nothing - Second listen-thru. Still great. Picked up another Celeste Headlee book she’s so great.
  • The Men Who Created Gundam - An over-the-top re-telling of the history of Gundam told in a yakuza manga format. Does a wonderful job highlighting Gundam’s impact on anime as a medium, bringing it into a new (more mature) era.
  • Influence - This book is about sales, but darn it all if I didn’t hear it as a playbook for modern politics.
  • Twenty Bits I Learned About Making Websites - A bit of nostalgia and wisdom from Simplebits
  • Birdking Volume 1 - A wonderful new series by CROM, rich in lore.
  • Gideon Falls Volume 1: The Black Barn - So good I bought all the rest of the comics in the series.
  • This Is a Prototype? - Back on my prototyping bullshit this time with some perspective from the Stanford
  • Binti - I overhyped this in my head. I found it a bit repetitive and was unable to suspend my disbelief as big problems resolved with ease… I didn’t become fully immersed. That said, the core idea is great and it’s possible I’ll pick up other books in the series.

📝 Blogging

I hit a small blogging streak at the end of the month. Classic Dave Rupert blogging style right there but, inspired by Chris’s blog, I’m trying to do more “thought blasters”. Shorter posts of ideas that stick in my head. I think I did okay at that.

📺 Media

Went on a deep dive with animation and anime this month. I’m sure more of that will be surfacing in the blog in the coming weeks.


  • Black Panther: Wakanda Forever - I applaud Marvel for pulling off this sequel in light of Chadwick Boseman’s unexpected death due to cancer. A great super hero movie about dealing with grief.

TV & Streaming

  • Extraordinary Attorney Woo (Netflix) - I love the court room theatrics of a procedural drama and the autistic protagonist.
  • Play it by Ear (Dropout)


  • Mobile Suit Gundam: The 08th MS Team (YouTube) - Only got a few eps in before boobs showed up. Not a big deal, par for the anime course, but need something more family friendly.
  • Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam (YouTube) - This is a good series. A surprising amount of political factions and drama tied in with a Robot-of-the-Week format.
  • Nichijou (Crunchyroll) - This anime is wild. Would recommend.
  • Spy X Family (Crunchyroll) - Watched a couple episodes in, but this show is fun in a way that only anime can be fun.
  • Dragon’s Heaven (YouTube) - A 1988 mech anime that I blogged about.


🧶 Crafting

I did a lot of Gunpla this month. Two mass-produced “GM” models which are my favorite kind of mech and two protagonist Gundam.

  • HGUC 020 RGM-79 GM - This is my favorite of the group.
  • Entry Grade GAT-X105 Strike Gundam - I wanted to do an easy Entry Grade. I must confess: I did throw away an arm part in the big garbage and well… after a little bit of digging… I was able to finish the model.
  • HGUC 097 RGM-89 Jegan - My second favorite of the group. I love this little mass-produced assault mech.
  • HGUC 193 RX-178 Gundam Mk-II (A.E.U.G.) - The protagonist mech from Mobile Suit Zeta Gundam. It’s fun to build the Gundam from the show while watching the show, it creates a tactile little connection.

👾 Video games

  • Overwatch 2.0 - Played a bit more OW2. The balance patch helped. Juuuust in time for a new season with new maps, characters, and skins to farm.
  • Warzone 2.0 - Me and the boys are dropping into WZ2. It’s buggy and I’m trash at the game, but I think I’m on the cusp on locking into how the new game mechanics. It’s the same game as before but super different at the same time.