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Topic Lords


Every week, Jim invites different friends to guest on Topic Lords and be excited about whatever they've been fixated on this week.


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Every week, Jim invites different friends to guest on Topic Lords and be excited about whatever they've been fixated on this week.




189. If You Don't Know Who Your Wario Is, You're The Wario

Lords: * Alexander * Yaros Topics: * Somewhat Dim Mirror * Unique and weird self-bootstrapping computer language - Forth * I've been getting emails from an Online Casino Guide offering analysis of the relative popularity of characters from the Mario Bros. movie. How did they get my email, and how did they know that this is the kind of thing I want to gamble on? * The Kraken, by Alfred Tennyson * * NES dev scene and new games still being released * * You have to heat a black hole to cool it down * Winston is suddenly really into Power Rangers which I'm not super thrilled about, but it does make me happy that the appeal of cheesy MIDI rock won't be lost on future generations * Esper says: "The tradition of taking Japanese action stuff and reworking it into an entirely different show is pretty wild, and pretty common. The original idea behind the western release of Sailor Moon was actually going to be a live action cast of young girls who transform into "cartoon scouts" or something, and the legendary anime Macross (known for animating lots of missles with cool smoke trails) was brought over here and entirely rewritten to be Robotech, an already existing western property. Power Rangers specifically comes from the Super Sentai tokusatsu series, of which there's actually two or three dozen seasons, each with more or less individual continuity. They're fun and goofy to watch if you get a chance to see the originals; I was mostly surprised by how self-aware they are." Microtopics: * Just playing games you already know whenever you find the time for games. * Dystopian fiction about all the little annoying things. * Dystopian fiction about all the terrible TV shows that are on now. * A guy who thought his idea would work but it didn't. * A black mirror but a little less black. * How really shiny black things work. * Logging in to watch people make themselves miserable. * Reverse polish notation. * Giving up on operating systems and deciding to live inside a Forth interpreter. * Going back to the Cambrian period and being like "what is this shell thing and what is it trying to accomplish?" * How Forth is like Eurovision. * Borrowing someone's RPN calculator and being very confused for a moment. * Your Dymaxion map of the globe. * The next emulations of Hewlett-Packard reverse polish notation calculators. * Online Casino Guides and the kinds of email they send. * A gaming and entertainment experience. * Naming your movie @ and getting incredible engagement on Twitter. * How recently Nethack has been patched. * Carpetology and the study of rugs and carpets even though they're not in the same phylum. * The Dungeons and Dragons Chick Tract. * A kid named Wario. * The Abysmal Sea. * Unnumbered and enormous polypi. * Interpreting a poem as a political statement when it's clearly about how giant squids are super cool. * Lauding this poet's skill with language even though he didn't know the difference between abyssal and abysmal. * Calling a poem a sonnet when it doesn't meet the criteria of a sonnet just because Tennyson wrote it. * Wanting to be huge and eat sponges, like the kraken. * Dendy. * Buying NES games made this year. * Sokoban with a Twist. * MOON 8. * Releasing chiptunes on vinyl shaped like a square. * Russian Roulette for the NES making good use of the Zapper. * Two people who are really bad at archery. * Pointing your Rambo exploding arrow at the exploding barrel sitting right next to you. * A turn-based thing where you can kill zombies. * Forklift simulators in VR. * NES Maker and GB Studio. * LLVM's NES back-end. * Making a NES game in C and never using local variables. * Finding the free time to do all your hobbies. * The bigger I am the colder I am, and if you heat me up I get bigger and colder. What am I? * A tear in geometry that just leaks shit. * Care and feeding of your pet black hole. * Pascal's Breakfast. * Whether it's in...


188. An Extremely Gendered Sniper Rifle

Lords: * Maxx * Erica Topics: * Zines and Jam Games; stuff that's understood to be breakable * * Birding in the pandemic * Itinerant Filmmakers * * Meditation on Capitalism * I found the tweet that the image came from, but still don't know the author of the poem: Microtopics: * The Bugzooka * Booms and busts of little insect invasions. * A little vacuum chamber that you squish closed. * Sucking a fly through a tube. * Cry havoc and let slip the bugs of war. * Egads, Bugzooks! * The Bug-A-Salt Passion Assassin 3.0. * A middle aged dad of the type that would buy a salt gun * A bugzooka in active use. * A balding man who looks like Jeffery Epstein crawling on the floor in his underwear to promote the Bug-A-Salt. * Professor Fly Presents: Fly Facts. * Judging the anatomical correctness of Professor Fly. * Hammacher-Schlemmer ads for bug-catching devices. * Whether women make better snipers. * Aiming at the fly on the wall with your laser sight. * Mr. Pinch. * A fly in a lab coat who lives in Seattle. * A photocopied leaflet about your band or political cause. * The best, most well-produced musicians in the world. * Ways to frame game jams. * A good brain hack for if you feel the urge to be a product. * Indiepocalypse. * Electric Zine Maker. * Whether the pandemic is over. * One of the birdiest places in the United States. * Talk Irby to Me. * Becoming texting buddies with a famous bird systematist from Cornell. * A Big Year. * Yelling bird coordinates at someone you just met. * Winston's favorite bird and why he likes it so much. * Knowing something about ravens. (Not what they eat.) * The Northwestern Crow. * A crow catching live shrimp and stashing them in the moss. * Collecting black walnut husks to dye wool. * Feeding crows who bring you lipstick from the 1940s. * What to do with a 10 pound bag of unsalted peanuts. * A movie where every kid in town foils an attempted kidnapping and then holds a talent show. * Ark Music Factory. * Hiring a record label guy to write and record a song with your daughter so she can star in a terrible music video and become a survivor of internet celebrity. * Social media survivors. * Stardom: it's not good for you. * Whether kids today still want to be movie stars. * Bitmojis and other things that put you in a little cartoon. * A customized birthday greeting from a Weird Al. * Paying Rudy Giuliani a pittance to wish your mom a happy birthday. * One of the Breaking Bad hitman twins undercutting the other by $300 on Cameo. * Preserving your Too Short custom rap tape on Youtube. * A poem written in BASIC that is spoilers for Mad Men. * The light in your Ikea bookshelf recognizing the light in you. * Doing line number archaeology when reading a BASIC program. * Seeing text from the other side of the page through the page. * Do It. * Instructional Art. * Finding 25 identical objects and naming them all Jimmy. * Flying Maxx to the Permian Basin to teach your students how to repair microscopes.


187. The Second-Best Whale Playground In Emeryville

Lords: * Cort * Stephan * Topics: * USB-C cables that only work in one orientation * * Playgrounds seem to have gotten really good again in the last ten years * Bedtime guitar update * Where the Wild Things Are * * Classic hardware has become a kind of fantasy console * * * * Constructing a computing environment as a nested series of cages for a child to escape Microtopics: * Extra plugs. * Mr. Saitou * How to sideload software onto the Playdate. * Trying to make Sifteo happen. * Where to find all the fancy MacIntosh dithering algorithms. * Ableton for the Sega Megadrive. * Who Zarf is. * EU legislation saying that phones must charge via USB-C, which is unsustainable, when the text of the law ought to have been "Apple, knock that shit off." * Getting rid of your bucket of cables. * Never throwing away wood because you might need one that shape some day * Never throwing away oddly shaped pieces of wood because you might become a carpenter some day. * Playgrounds getting bad and then good again. * Getting breakfast at the Emeryville Public Market. * Whether swings or seesaws still exist. * Giant wooden castles with bridges going between them. * How to make the spinny playground things safe. * A regionally variable playground. * What countries have and don't have playgrounds. * The San Lorenzo Community Park. * A big stone bear you can climb on. * Whether any of those playground speaking tubes have ever worked. * Wanting the world to have magic in it so you lie to your kid about science. * The Dennis the Menace playground in Monterey. * Periodically removing the poison oak. * Growing up and being on the other side of the memory. * The Dead Dad playground turning into a fenced-off deathtrap. * Procedural memory for nice melodies. * Mountain dulcimers vs. hammered dulcimers. * Walking around with a bandolier of mountain dulcimers, one for every key. * What happens when you're living in the Appalachians and you want to make a violin but you can't. * What to do with your ability to play an instrument when you have no free time. * Maintaining a consistent strumming pattern while singing. * Strumming and finding finger positions intuitively. * Here's all the notes. Play the right ones at the right times. * The Virtual Console of musical instruments. * Jim's favorite note in the mixolydian mode. * Where the Wild Things Are for Xbox 360. * A poem with hardly any punctuation. * Going on a journey of many weeks in just a few pages. * Max in a wolf suit fighting bees with a stick. * Maurice Sendak Kart Racer. * Dinosaur Time. * Clapping for names you know. * A building with dinosaur bones in it. * Rumpusing things. * Games where you whack shadow spiders with a stick. * GB Studio. * Putting a wifi adapter in an NES cartridge. * The Mario modding tool set. * An IDE for making NES games. * Pi-Boy D. * Doing homebrew development on a system that is still in active use. * Castlevania: Passacaglia of Disrepair. * GBA of Theseus. * Making a Lynx game that supports 8-player multiplayer, when there aren't 8 people who own the system. * Porting a game about matching colors to a monochrome display. * Giving your kids a computer running Linux to teach them sysadmin skills, but they just play games on their phone instead. * Branded Scratch Wrappers. * Composing new music for the extended What the Golf? cinematic universe. * How to unlock your school laptop to play the Chrome Dinosaur Game.


186. ADHD Shame Graveyard Of Browser Tabs

Lords: * Tim * Ben * Topics: * My Thursday Night * The daunting thought of: there is so much music that exists now - it's more than likely that your favorite song in the world is out there and you'll never find it in your lifetime. * I've been working on a small game in my spare time and I never want to ship it. I just want to have friends playtest forever. * Fine Feather * * The terrifying field of Hostile Nuclear Architecture * * Do you have 10^3 tabs open in Chrome? * In Super Mario World, some secrets reward you by skipping levels and some reward you by adding new levels. Make up your mind! If the level add guy and the level subtract guy had just talked to each other they could've just left the levels as they were and saved everybody a lot of work. Topics: * Having something to unplug. * Continuing to take care of your children. * Going to see the Mountain Goats for your birthday. * Sleep meds that don't interact well with grapefruit. * Caring for a newborn for a month and then suddenly having a nice meal. * A cocktail of factors. * Finding an amazing new artist you become obsessed with for the next few months. * Listening to music while you work. * A poster containing the source code for Pitfall. * How to keep finding new music in your thirties. * Phonograph. * Auto-brewery syndrome but for methamphetamines. * A good song that everybody likes. * Fear of stories. * Refusing to see a movie because you're afraid of what it'll make you feel. * Going camping in the woods in order to watch a movie. * Reliving your past experience in memory. * The soap operas that your ex's mom would watch. * Buying sheet music and playing it yourself in anticipation of when the orchestra comes to your town to play you the real thing. * Sheet music as a pre-release hype document. * Reading the manual of your new video game on the car ride home. * Crestfallenness. * Listening to a record with somebody. * Rogue topics that keep threatening to come up. * Playtesting as a way to get to know your friends better. * Approaching the things that are valuable to you through the lens of an illusion that you know is an illusion. * Lockdown hobbies. * How to enjoy hobbies. * Starting a Youtube series called "Ben sucks at baking" so you get a bunch of followers who will be disappointed if you get good at baking. * Dehydrating beer to get yeast out of it. * Making beer out of the yeast that's just hanging out in the air around you. * Gordy and the Monster Moon. * Nine year olds who are incredible at climbing because they refuse to eat fish. * A sparrow showing you its whole ass. * Whether sparrows are detested. * How to dispose of nuclear waste. * Attempts to make you hind brain think "I need to leave here immediately." * The meme of the skeleton playing the trumpet. * A field of Aztec death whistles activated by the wind blowing. * Trying to save the lives of people who live far in the future. * Speaking across time. * Whether this place is a place of honor. * An ADHD Shame Graveyard of Browser Tabs. * Going over all your browser tabs to see which ones remain relevant to you. * Details of how one bathes oneself that we never discuss in public. * A web browser that'll tell you "no, I think you've had enough tabs" * A brick that gives you a key. * How Elden Ring is structured. * A game that is a foray into a new design space that demonstrates how not to solve these design problems. * A scavenger hunt to find the next Topic Lords guest.


185. 2000-Year-Old Head, Again??

Lords: * Danny * Kim Topics: * Animorphs * My keyboard is registering double inputs again help me * Youtube channels that summarize movies like Cliff's Notes * * * CatGPT * M3gan; technology horror movies * You don't get points for coins in Super Mario World! Microtopics * A video game man. * The Animorphs train. * Children committing war crimes and having to live with the consequences. * How many books are in the Animorphs series. * The Visser Chronicles. * Yeerks living in the Yeerk pool. * Finding the person whose car you stole and explaining "here's your car back, I did a bunch of war crimes in it" * Hearing someone explain Animorphs repeatedly and never forming a single opinion. * The horror of noses moving around. * Refusing to read graphic novels because you can't read and look at pictures at the same time. * Animorphs: Shattered Reality. * Why boys don't read Animorphs. * Marco turning into an Andalyte. * Eating via your hooves. * F for Furry. * The canonical source for all sexualities. * Non-Consensual Dippin' Dots. * Haunted Headphones. * How to compliment your partner's flams. * Taking a movie and turning it into a TikTok. * The dude from Dark with the face. * Twisted social experiment: whoever survives til the end gets to live. * 2000 Year Old Head Again?? * Blind Man Who Robbers Are Trying To Avoid For A Movie. * This Garfield Comic is Too Highbrow. * A Simple Rhyming Man. * I Had a Lover's Quarrel with the World. * A chat bot that only replies with cat memes. * An extremely asymmetric cat. * Hiding inside the couch. * A cat wearing a neckerchief. * AI dolls in horror movies. * A movie that is advertised relentlessly on whatever wavelength you're on. * Content warning: hilarious child death. The whole movie theater will laugh. * Haunted TikTok. * Topic Lords M3gan Edition. * Robot vs. Firmware Updates. * Robot vs. EULA. * Horror stories about firmware updates. * A toilet that screams at you if you're not licensed to shit in it. * Bathrooms that self clean whether you're still in there or not. * How many points coins are worth in all the different Mario games. * Incentivizing children to stomp on goombas. * Frog Fractions as an expression of score-related trauma. * An email where it's hard to tell who is fucking with whom. * The kind of people who like a game and leave a negative review on Steam that is clearly a joke but actually click the thumbs down button. * Curling: the most horny sport. * The game where people crouch really low and try to get a stone into a button. * Playing Frog Fractions for 420 hours. * The modern experience of being verified on Twitter. * The time Frog Fractions was crashing when you played it in France.


184. Times New Orange

Lords: * Alexicographic * * * Andrew * Topics: * The 3-food problem: what 3 foods are pairwise good but bad all together? * Talking loudly during movie trailers as an act of anticapitalist subversion * Moon Mode on your phone camera is probably just pasting a good picture of the moon over your bad one. * * The Orange by Wendy Cope * * Learning Italian from a cartoon dog * Being able to identify McElroy fans by how they complement my woodworking * * RIP List of Video Games Considered Artistic * * * Microtopics: * kittenm4ster's PICO-8 games. * Vibing with the Alfonzo's Bowling Challenge ethos. * A game that is implemented in under 8000 tokens. * The ideal game pitch. * Chocolate and cheese and something. * Choccoli. * Chocolate and gravy. * A lukewarm Americano. * A bunch of foodies who really know their foodstuffs. * A fish being strangled by Red Vines. * A GPU that has food inside of it. * The Turing test for whether computers can taste foods. * Asking Chat GPT what three foods you can combine to create a bomb in your kitchen. * Whether Gallium has calories. * Three people on a podcast who all think "trailers" should come after the movie * Finding out about a movie by seeing a trailer in a movie theater even though trailers are constantly spilling out of every screen you own. * Getting the wiggles out. * How to make the lives of people who enjoy looking at ads a little bit worse. * Yelling "fire" before the movie starts so fewer people pay attention to the pre-movie ads. * Wanting to become the reason all movies have "no leopards in the theater" PSAs now. * A toddler watching Youtube, yelling "no!" and throwing the phone on the ground when an ad plays. * Pushing the lever to receive your stochastic reward. * Youtube deciding you've seen enough ads lately and taking pity on you. * Trying to explain to a four year old how to play a light gun game but the game is over before you finish explaining. * The Space Alien Busting Song. * Drawing new mountains on the moon to test your camera's moon mode. * Here's the moon again. * A filter to replace pictures of your wife with the moon. * A Snapchat filter that makes you feel like you used to be attractive. * A filter that takes your bad photos of the moon and makes them even worse. * The worst bunny in the moon. * A good poem that rhymes. * Turtle metaconsistency. * Enormous and hilarious oranges. * Good art here, you guys. * Reading poetry in the original Helvetica. * BorgiaPro on various font downloading sites. * A cartoon that is entertaining even if you are not learning Italian. * Finding Armando's old hat in the attic. * Asking the clouds to move so that your hat can protect you from the sun. * Working within a constraint that produces delightful nonsense. * Photocopying yourself to create a black and white clone. * What drugs they'll give to kids in what countries. * Growing up but continuing to take the same drugs. * A little girl who is also a dog. * Subtitles that don't match what's being said aloud. * Watching Italian TV using a VPN. * The Andrew Lloyd Weber musical with the roller skates. * Roller bladers dancing in weird futuristic costumes. * Having positive fun experiences with language. * Learning a new language while skydiving. * Hiring an experienced skydiver who can give you foreign language lessons while you're both falling from a plane. *...


183. The Radioactive Scone Problem

Lords: * John * Quil Topics: * Taking advantage of a rare opportunity to play a Legend of Zelda game before every aspect of it is documented on the internet * RCA's implementation of color television is one of the most impressive engineering feats of the 20th century * The guy next to me on BART talked to me the entire ride home from GDC. He made me play the phone game he was addicted to and compared my performance to the coworker he was also making play the game. He got a call from his wife and introduced me to her. He told me he was in prison for 30 years for murder. His step son is a pitbull breeder and he complained about how few free pitbulls he was getting. He smelled weed on the train and put on a loud voice to announce "I'm a cop, put your vape pen away." My stop was also his stop, so the monologue didn't let up when I got off the train. I finally escaped when he was distracted by girl scout cookies. * * Are dumplings universal? It seems like every civilization has at some point invented their version of 'carbs around a protein' food Microtopics: * The best part of the show. * The Great Lakes Pigeon Rescue. * How best to keep a pigeon. * Hiding in the discord * Solving problems in interesting ways. * A very interesting idea that just barely pays off. * Playing a new game all weekend for the first time in your life. * A game that is too spiky to be solved by one person. * A matchmaking service that puts you on a forum with fifty people who are each starting a Dark Souls game for the first time. * Accidentally playing geez Fez with your sister. * A riddle about risk management. * Not being able to throw away radioactive waste because you don't want to waste food. * Deciding which cookie to put in your mouth * Finding the password to someone's laptop in a video game by googling their information in real life. * Digital vs. Analog circuitry. * Piggybacking the color signal on top of the black and white signal. * Quadrature amplitude modulation. * Racing the Beam. * Being banished from the kingdom for partly understanding how television works. * Inventing two televisions so you can run one backwards. * Extroverts who when meeting an introvert, think to themselves "it's my job to bridge the gap" * Escaping when someone is distracted by Girl Scout Cookies. * Encountering the ARG that you made for yourself and then forgot about. * Not getting as many free pitbulls as you thought. * Getting off the train early to get away from the person who won't stop talking to you and he's like "oh ok I'll get off here too." * Your wife who hates when you impersonate a cop. * The episode of Train Hot Dog which was just Jim reading a stack trace for twenty minutes. * Trying to figure out what web site you can browse on your phone to get the person sitting next to you to stand up. * Jim's preferred San Francisco residents. * The orange bland ambassadorial face of the moon. * Wild spiders crying together. * What to do when the air raid sirens go off. * Moving to a new place where they don't have monthly nuclear accident drills. * John Vanderslice. * The Human Missile Crisis. * Showing fear for humanity before it's cool. * Poetry that is not meant to be read aloud. * Stripping the formatting out of e e cummings's poetry. * A poem that skips around on the page like Chutes and Ladders. * Topic Troves. * Carbs around a protein food. * A rooster named Pierogi. * Whether dumplings have to be slimy. * Putting the pudding in a protein. * A particleboard meat. * A McRib that's been injected with custard. * Sweet and savory things placed inside a carb. * What civilizations have never invented the dumpling. * How to get from agriculture to the Hot Pocket. * The singular of funfetti. * How to get into the Topic Lords discord. * Topic Lords the Phone Game. * Cheap Bots Toot Sweet.


182. Baby Baby Mario

Lords: * Jenni * * Chris * Topics: * All the stuff we did in the 90s that is horrifying to modern parents now, like sleepovers and latchkey kids * The movie for Jurassic Park 2 is somehow worse than the book and the book is very bad. * The VR episode of Nowhere Man * I fucked up my car by running over a mattress on purpose * * There was a space battle over Nuremberg in 1561 and the local broadsheets reported on it with woodcuts: * * Microtopics: * Baby Mario and Baby Luigi being two different species. * Riff and Jenni play Rusty Lake. * Absorbing most of your twin in the womb and all that's left is his heart behind your nipple. * Nippleheart. * Cool Time Dice Hour. * Cragne Manor. * Heck of a project, terrible game, not recommended at all. * Cragne Manor's TV Tropes page. * A Metafilter thread about sleepovers. * Your mom asking for a report on all the swear words in the book you're reading. * Elsa Screams at Dentist. * Watching Elsa Screaming videos on Youtube to learn how to scream better. * Going to the bookstore by yourself when your are 13 years old. * Calling the anime repair guy when your anime goes out. * New guy just dropped: guy with trench coat full of VHS tapes who won't hand you the VHS tapes, he makes you reach in and take them. * Socializing your kids poorly so nobody will invite them to sleepovers. * Learning how sex works and then calling a conference on the playground to explain it to everyone. * Calvin's dad explaining that women only pee once a month. * Picking up the broken glass that your meth dealer neighbor keeps throwing in your cactus garden. * The tiny-handed thin-necked final girl. * Abraham Lincoln's wrestling career. * The one where they defeat the veloraptors with gymnastics. * The one where they defeat the velociraptors by showing them Elsa Screaming videos on Youtube. * Taking a bad book and adapting it into an even worse movie. * Doing drugs until the dinosaurs look like they have feathers. * Microscopic dust particles on the slicey bits. * Why blowing into the cartridge did or didn't work * Hunter-gatherers blowing on a blinking raspberry bush and cursing the defective lockout chip. * Being unable to hunt bison because of bison DRM. * A completely made-up kind of VR. * Downloading your estranged wife from the internet so you can reunite in VR. * A Rough Whimper of Insanity. * Max Headroom: a guy with a weird forehead who shows up in media sometimes, like a California Raisin. * Explaining Mac Tonight to a 22 year old. * The worst car you could have possibly imagined. * Delightful clean all-ages nonsense. * Demonstrating your allegiance to 90s-era edgelordism. * Cresting the event horizon of random bullshit. * The VR apparatus hanging off of your wasted body. * Adding more vanilla than the recipe calls for. * Putting a hapenny on the spice vendor's tongue and reaching into his trench coat to pull out a bag of cumin. * Poking bytes into memory to mod Cyberpunk 2077. * Whether Pico-8 is more or less racist than Dickens Fair. * The space battle that took place over Nuremberg in 1561. * UFOs vs. UAPs. * Tie-Fighters and Star Destroyers over Nuremberg. * The All-Domain Anomaly Resolution Office: if you got an anomaly, yo, they'll resolve it. * Asking the Pentagon for money for a cab fare to go investigate unexplained aerial phenomena. * A mass hysteria of the collective unconscious. * Marrying your cousin and going into space. * Anakin is of the species Baby Mario and Padme is a Baby Luigi so when they breed they'll have an infertile Baby Wario or Baby Waluigi. * The fan theory where Jar-Jar is the Sith Lord. * The origin of angels as a terror. * Pre-hurricane ice crystal patterns. * Making biblically accurate angels out of...


181. My Own Personal Kennedy Assassination

Lords: * Avery * Tyriq Topics: * Adam, Father of all humankind, was maybe a giant * Heathcliff is still going and it's weird * I've heard a million novelty metal covers but still nobody's done Truly Scrumptious / Doll on a Music Box from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang * "The Phone Call" by James Tate Microtopics: * Withholding all your best URLs until the end of the episode. * Using lowercase Ls in place of Is and seeing if anybody notices. * Leaving capitalizations to the whims of chaos. (Your fingers.) * Teachers explaining that if you can't write in cursive by junior high your teachers will throw things at you and call you stupid. * Adam and Eve growing to 18 feet tall. * Pre-flood humans and their towering heights/lifespans/IQs. * How to make your wisdom teeth fit again. * Conspiracy theories that have no bearing on anything. * Fighting wars over the estimated radius of the earth. * The Nephilim. * YHWH fanfiction. * How many Jesuses are alive today. * The friend you have with superhuman charisma and whether they ended up starting a cult. * Getcherself a nice cult, settle down, have a thousand babies. * The guy who was both a dwarf and a giant during his lifetime. * Every tall person having been short at one point. * Chain-smoking tweens drinking martinis and yelling at their secretaries. * A Topic Lords ouroboros. * Hypothesizing why the elderly people Heathcliff lives with have a child. * Having a child for some reason. * A humanoid robot with the word "meat" printed on its chest. * The kind of people who read comics every day. * Zippy the Pinhead. * A weird underground subculture comic that somehow made it into newspaper syndication. * Mustache Mondays vs. Mustache Lasagna. * A milk mustache but for lasagna. * A cartoon anvil that has its weight imprinted on it. * Two side characters explaining the situation to each other. * One of the birds says to the other, "Christ, what an asshole." * Historians a thousand years from now deciding whether Heathcliff should be included in the Bible. * After recorded media stops being a thing, episodes of The Simpsons being passed down as oral history. * Rhapsodes. * Contests for the best rhapsode. * Hector of the Shining Helmet vs. Hector the Booty Inspector. * Fillet episodes in the Odyssey and the Iliad. * The Flaming Lips album that comes on four CDs that your supposed to play simultaneously, but nobody's ever bothered. * How they handle hidden tracks on Spotify. * How to deal with skits when you're ripping rap albums to mp3. * The Meat Puppets playing a set in the middle of Nirvana'a MTV Unplugged set. * Writing a song about a shooting star who's been turned into a rat and has just fallen in love with someone named Tristran, and trying to figure out what rhymes with Tristran. * Working at the Brill Building. * Tin Pan Alley. * Nearly jumping out of your pants. * Taking a high-paying job as a murder victim. * The one where people wear horse skulls. * The Scrambler, from issue #12 where the panels were all out of order. * Working at the oil refinery until a giant spider comes and steals the Light of the Silmarils. * Whether there's a werewolf in the Silmarillion. * Biblical Exigesis. * Getting email saying that your art is improving someone's life. * A phone that can receive text messages but you have to pay extra to know who they're from.


180. We Are All Stardust Poop

Lords: * Ichiro * Adam Topics: * I learned how to animate by watching cartoons as a child (and I'm curious what else folks absorbed as a child that impacted the kind of adult they became) * I created a Totally Human Rapper that can read up on a game and cut a rap video. * Frog Fractions is banned from AGDQ * "Frog Fractions" by Totally Human Rapper * Tiny Mass Games small games cycle. Microtopics: * One of the episodes with a cold open. * Live from New York, it's. * Using ocean water as a mixer. * Being of poop and returning to poop. * Using the Boston river as a mixer. * Learning everything you know about love from Robotech. * Losing your fiancee and marrying an alien instead. * Paying $6/hr to play a MUD. * Corresponding with your MUD lover via dead tree letters. * Playing a MUD and cheating on one avatar with another avatar and eventually realizing that they are played by the same person. * Sleep is Death. * The cool part of the Metaverse circa 2005. * Learning what human relationships look like by watching Saturday morning cartoons. * Sarah and Duck. * Pocoyo. * Busting ghosts. (A very important time in a boy's life.) * Retired Men's Nude Beach Volleyball League. * The center of your Venn diagram as a creator. * Ichiro Paydirt. * If Tank Girl were a streamer. * Endless Seinfeld pulling a Microsoft Tay. * The year of the deluge of AI generated crap. * Making a BBS door game about traveling into space. * Zooming out of yourself and looking at it with ghost eyes. * A game that appears to be family-friendly but is actually porn-adjacent. * The Timic skip. * A very respectful way to play Frog Fractions. * The two concessions Jim made to game design in the Frog Fractions remaster. * Catering to the you demographic. * Blanking on Tim Ambrogi's name. * Noted base jumping game "ahh" * An underlying engine that just won't swear. * Saying something interesting enough to be debated by a bunch of people. * Stemming the tide of mediocrity across streaming platforms. * The value of making dinner for two people vs. making art for millions of people. * Having a thought in your head and wanting people to hear it. * Gluing all the ports shut. * Games that gradually destroy themselves. * Follow the Frog, an arcade action adventure. * Where Totally Human Rapper gets his ideas. * How to jailbreak ChatGPT. * A deck building auto battler without the deck. * A well-scoped game design. * Not really having anything to say but loving to wrestle with language. * An AI generated game about AI generated games. * Polishing a prototype enough to put it in front of a mass audience. * Rating AI-generated food. * Synergies and combinatorics. * The development process for each Frog Fractions game. * Answering to ask things. *


179. Get Bad

Lords: * Alex * Shannon Topics: * Reading music badly * Minigame: guess the animal from bad old-timey descriptions * How to pronounce "MacPaint" * * Airport teleportation Microtopics: * Games that you should not play if you get addicted to games. * Roguelikes that take a reasonable amount of time to play if you are bad at them. * We're Not That Bad!™ * The Sunnyvale Singers. * Producing music with a piano. * Two guards, one who can't read a book and the other one who can read a book aloud but doesn't know the language. * Buttons corresponding to the doots. * Given a starting note, figuring out what the next note is supposed to be. * Not being able to sight sing but faking it by looking at the vertical distance between notes. * Music direction reading "lower than you think" (but in Italian) * Knowing the chord progressions to 10,000 pop songs. * Ways to make music. * Moving between shapes even without hearing them. * Playing accompaniment to silent films. * Improvising music differently each time. * Pliny the Elder describing the camel leopard. * An animal with the neck of a horse but the head of a camel. * A bigness answering thereto. * Enjoying the alligator too much. * A curse on four legs, equally pernicious on land and river. * Inflating the chameleon. * Spontaneous generation. * Horned ghosts catapulting themselves around. * Hunting an elephant by tricking it into leaning on a tree that won't support it. * Whether elephants have knees. * Vultures gestating for three years and giving live birth. * Vultures and condors reproducing without mating. * Your good friend Ms. Paint. * Naming your dog a Japanese-sounding name with no regard to Japanese phonotactics and then arguing with people who try to correct you. * Baking a cake that is 80% vanilla extract. * A poem in the options of a Tumblr poll. * Starting from a point of trust but slowly starting to doubt yourself. * Orpheus and Eurydice. * A poignant way of putting the reader in the character's frame of mind. * The value of Oregon Trail. * Iterating the Orpheus and Eurydice prisoner's dilemma, where whether looking back is the right move is different every time. * Choosing to buy a certain amount of supplies and watching that not work out for you and the character you named after your best friend in the media lab dies. * Extremely short form interactive fiction. * Making an important decision and never finding out if it was the right decision. * Performing Sicilian Reasoning to finesse the outcome of this online cake ingredient poll. * Making a perfect stairway in an online poll. * Making a phone app to help people choose the best option in the cake ingredient poll. * Instantly teleporting from your seat on the flight to the entrance to your destination airport. * Teleporting from the TSA interrogation room to the entrance of the airport. * Teleportation gravity wells. * Establishing an international airport out of your home. * Hoping the cops never figure out that you can only teleport to the entrance of an airport. * Stuperpowers * Gerrymandering your teleport destinations. * An international airport that is 100 miles long and 1 centimeter wide. * Asking a friend to convince you that a certain building is an international airport. * Drinking a glass of water while standing on your head to convince yourself of what an airport is. * Hiccups Gone Install. * You Only Get Screamered Once.


178. The Lathe Of Kojima

Lords: * CisHetKeyfaber * Phone Topics: * Calculus ruined incremental games for me * SFF PCs are ridiculous and hilarious * What's the deal with HDR? * Ode to Ice Cream by Vada Sultenfuss (from the movie My Girl) * Metal Gear Solid 2 is the most important game of 2023 Microtopics: * Appropriating wrestling culture. * Idle games vs. incremental games. * Trimps. * Physics and calculus educators each pretending the other field doesn't exist. * Jerk as a unit of measurement. * Ruining a child's mathematical career by teaching them linear algebra. * Floating point precision. * Optimizing the area under the curve. * What's the jerk of my progress? * Position, speed, acceleration, jerk, jounce, hyperjerk, metajounce, binge warp, migrational spank, barflurch, dark jaunt, catastrophic snap, whipfuck, and Newton's Torment. * A real aerodynamic phenomenon. * Ruining the bench racers. * The kind of people who form an online community around a game. * The NGU IDLE speedrunning community. * Slaying the starting area killing slimes for 90 hours. * How big 26.8 liters is. * Rehoming your PC. * How many shoeboxes your PC case is equivalent to. * A graphics card that is perpendicular to the motherboard. * How many parakeets could fit in your PC case using modern parakeet packing algorithms. * Making a novelty enormous soda can to use as a fake scale comparison in photos. * Bending your hand at a weird angle. * JEBKAC. * The jerk of your PC case. * Turning the gamma up in order to see a video game. * Squashed gamuts. * Adding more bits to describe the color. * HDMI stratification. * The colors that future mankind will invent. * Being unable to use certain hex color triplets because the Pantone license expired. * When ice cream tastes good. * Poems written by works in progress. * B.R.R. (Before Rocky Road) * Not having seen My Girl but having seen the cover at Blockbuster. * Growing up in a mortuary. * Bragging that you know how to play the theme to Jaws on the piano. * Nick at Nite. * Playing with Legos with I Love Lucy in the background. * Timeshared cable channels. * Nickelodeon's audience being kids and Nick at Nite's audience being the elderly so the channel's average audience is middle-aged. * The most important game of 2023. * The core switcheroo. * Psycho Mantis reading your memory card. * Playing a really whiny guy who just sucks. * Whether they've invented pausing cutscenes yet. * Pausing a 40 minute cutscene to go make pizza rolls. * AI heel turns. * Metal Gear Solid 2 beating out Vampire Survivors for most important game of 2022. * Why Hideo Kojima's dialog sounds like an American 90s movie. * Political theory outsider art. * The anti-Noby Noby Boy. * A discord channel brimming with Lords.


177. An Episode Your Landlord Should Not Listen To

Support Topic Lords on Patreon and get episodes a week early! ( Lords: * Alicia * Ryan * Just type his name into google. Topics: * Seattle's reaction to snow vs the Bay Area's reaction to rain: who is more dramatic? * Would you rather fart bones once a month or have Goldeneye "big head mode" on in real life for a year? * Moral philosophy lessons from the California DMV * Nancy * * Common everyday items that make you mentally "time travel" Microtopics: * Structurally reinforcing the scrotum. * Plugging mundane chores around the house. * Why do you live here, Seattle? * The lamentation of a failed joke being funnier than the joke itself would've been. * Turning the tire towards the curb when parking on a hill. * Driving in inclement weather. * Milking oats. * What it means for society when you make oat milk at home. * The rain we occasionally get except way more. * Bettie White-out. * When an imaginary kid uses his last words to put you on blast. * The advantages and disadvantages of big head mode. * How to get on the bus with big head mode on. * Whose bones you're farting right now. * Big Head Mode Confirmed in GoldenEye 007. * The yoga pose that is most optimal for shitting bones. * Getting your GoldenEye big head stuck in the automatic doors at TJ Maxx. * Whale bones on your mattress. * Which bones you can do without. * Bone pellets. * Using your broken tooth as a fidget toy. * An absolutely staggering amount of dental work. * A perfectly lovely root canal. * Using your bone-lasered rib as a fidget toy. * Extra ribs just loose in your torso somewhere. * Ribs of betrayal stabbing you in your soft pink innards. * McRib, more like MacBethRib. * The DMV letting you know that your custom license plate is "in the mail, you fucking pervert." * A grizzled PI paid to determine whether Dr. Puff is a real doctor. * Dark, but fair. * The moral philosophy of the DMV. * The 4chan veteran the DMV hires to detect profanity in custom license plate applications. * Three letters that mean a car thing. * You just got passed by a bad driver. * Nancyverse lore. * The one place in the world where the cost of living is higher than San Francisco. * Slant rhymes that slant so much they fall over. * Writing a Nancy fan poem just so you can slip increasingly awful rhymes into it. * Making your poem worse and worse as it goes on because what are the readers going to do, stop reading? Nobody has Netflix in 1966. * Using hand-crank egg-beaters when it's not the Prohibition. * Everybody at the office party with those paper guillotines, going to town on reams of paper. * Jim's hotel waffle story again. * Paying $8 for this novelty bust of Duke Nukem because you liked Duke Nukem 1. * High school kids dressing just like you dressed when you were in high school 20 years ago. * JNCO jeans with a dragon on the back pocket. * That Nostalgia Cycle: it's gonna come around. * Using two different keys to unlock and start your car. * The best car for the kidnapper on the go. * The first car to use the same key for the door, trunk and ignition. * Locking the exhaust pipe so nobody can put a banana in there. * Separate keys for locking your sun and moonroof.


176. A Diglett Slightly Tan

Support Topic Lords on Patreon and get episodes a week early! ( Lords: * Hallie * John B Topics: * Tabletop RPGs as educational platform * Flicky-likes * Etch A Sketch Animator 2000 * Poem: "My Brother's Head Should Be Replaced" by Jack Prelutsky * * Buff Diglett Microtopics: * 471 very positive reviews. * Pizza Tower, the Tower of Pizza. * Snoopy's Silly Sports Spectacular. * Taking a drink of your Safeway brand Diet Cola Caffeine Free Soda. * Bouncy the Rat and her friends in the Wild Wood. * Providing a platform for people to talk to each other and learn about boundaries. * Why to add numbers together. * Teaching children math when everyone has a pocket calculator in their pocket at all times. * A peek under the curtain. * The edutainment classics. * Three D&D combat system as a way to get comfortable doing arithmetic in your head. * Providing an experiential experience. * A tiny video game console that looks like a Sega Genesis. * Trying to sex Flicky. * Maximizing your combo chain in Flicky. * Sonic 3D Blast as a sequel to Flicky. * Super Rub-a-Dub. * Flicking the controller to make the rubber ducky jump. * A dude collecting dudes who follow you in a trail. * Pix the Cat. * All the Bubble Bobble sequels, none of which use the bubbling mechanic. * Rainbow Islands: Towering Adventure. * Whip Whip: the word "whip" twice. * The Etch-a-Sketch: a terrible toy for terrible people. * Making animations that are perhaps five or six frames long. * Controlling with the knobbies. * The Magic Touch Pad. * A button that says "recall" on it. * Putt-Nuts Go to the Moon, featuring Alan Shepard. * Plugging your Etch-a-Sketch into your VCR to save your art. * The powder leaking out of the Etch-a-Sketch because you used it too much. * It's like painting but on a TV but worse than regular painting. * 2000 gray squares. * The poet laureate of children. * The golden age of the CD-ROM. * Wanting a tomato to be bigger. * The Tomato Centipede. * Poems about homework. * A mole-type Pokemon. * Everybody independently coming to the conclusion that Diglett has a muscular human body down there. * Buff kittens. * Whether Dugtrio has one muscular human body down there, or three. * Three human bodybuilders cosplaying as Dugtrio. * Trying to search for "naked diglett" but Google autocorrects you to "naked woman" * Space Dentist!! * That one dentist out of ten who recommends that you go to space. * Organizing your video game garbo.


175. This Movie Has Marky Mark In It

Support Topic Lords on Patreon and get episodes a week early! ( Lords: * Erica * Jesse Topics: * There's a Spanish word which officially cannot be written because the grammar and orthography conflict about how it should spelled/pronounced. * My personal relationship with Disco Elysium * Clue II: Murder in Disguise * All of the Words on a Bottle of Rolling Rock Beer in a Different Order * * This year's beast of a Mystery Hunt * Shareable alarms Microtopics: * Texans with nothing to plug. * The Army Corp of Engineers coming to your town and kicking ass. * No, and no. * Fuck em, just get a laptop. * Fact checking the dinner table conversation with your laptop. * An interaction deemed normal. * The Spanish double-L sound. * Finally finding a way that spelling in English is more sensible than spelling in Spanish. * Desperately avoiding hearing French spoken incorrectly. * A place that is less like the rest of Canada than any part of the United States is like the United States. * A good relaxing podcast that leads to substantial academic progress. * Stormdancer Zero. * Secret of Monkey Island with additional D&D stat checks and communism. * Continents not connected to tectonic plates but instead freely floating in the mist. * When your stats talk to you. * Equipping a philosophical idea in your thought cabinet. * Where the resource extraction happens. * An alcoholic amnesiac video game protagonist. * Finding the richest person in town to explain to you how the world works. * Recreating all your characters from the ground up to be optimized for the game engine. * Cheating past the final boss in Baldur's Gate because the alternative is starting from scratch with a viable build. * Revising your thinking about the Gros Michel banana. * Campy goofballs doing campy goofball shit except it's not Tim Curry this time. * The guy whose name Jim can't remember who played Chuck on Better Call Saul. * The VCR board game phenomenon. * Scenes sort of adding up into a narrative if you squint. * Seeing John Lithgow when nobody else sees him. * How to get Michael Land to talk to you at CES. * Out-of-work FMV actors. * Specializing in loving horrible FMV games. * The one place that hasn't been corrupted by capitalism. * DVD games vs. VCR games. * A DVD arriving too late to save a drowning VCR game industry. * The pride of seeing your topic grow up and take its place in the world. * Panache, aplomb, and savoir-faire. * Rolling, glass tanks of beverages that rocked that lined mountain. * Women as the exception to implied maleness. * A folk pop album featuring a disgraced CDC employee. * 50 Cent rapping about going to prison for insider trading. * The Topic Lords Guarantee. * A series of interconnected puzzles that you solve as a team. * Flavor text explaining why it's fun to solve this math problem. * A beautiful puzzle hunt that is way too long. * Assuming that being good at solving puzzles is the same skill as constructing puzzles. * Waiting all year for a chocolate box that ends up being a marathon through Death Valley. * How to test a 100-person puzzle hunt. * Admonishing astronomers to "get good." * Puzzles that are like tiny little gifts that open up and dance in front of you. * A chip that controls a single light point on the wall. * Doing something for free vs. doing it for a pittance. * Losing your wedding ring but also your wedding ring screams once a day. * Your screaming wedding ring following you from house to house. * One o’clock: Time for Pants. * Remembering that it's time for pants no matter what time zone you're in. * The Playstation Vita's pants alarm. * Playing a competitive minigame to see who can wake up fastest. * Earning achievements for getting out of bed. * The app that is the opposite of sex.


174. Occam's Raccoon

Support Topic Lords on Patreon and get episodes a week early! ( Lords: * Chris * Alexander Topics: * Words with similar sounds/meanings but no relation to each other at all. * Virtual marble runs with guns * * The "broom method" of dealing with a hydrogen leak * * Poem by Dr. Seuss: “I have heard there are troubles of more than one kind. Some come from ahead and some come from behind. But I've bought a big bat. I'm all ready you see. Now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!” * Loveland Frog (Ohio frog bigfoot?) * * Ghosts are real: what are the economic consequences? Microtopics: * Space Warlord Organ Trading Simulator. * Lords starting with Xa. * Moving boxes that have handles built in. * All else being equal, a raccoon did it. * Proto-Indo-European. * Putting the S in Island. * The era of Topic Lords when we only discussed Shakespeare. * Some of the things you expect are wrong, and vice-versa. * Bacteria finding proteins hanging around and deciding "this is part of me now." * Branching path structures shooting red and blue bullets at each other. * Escalating Revenge Core Destruction. * If pachinko were extremely elaborate and violent. * Oil timers. * Turning over the rectangle on your desk and forcing the red and green combatants to fight for you once more. * Apollonian circles. * The ancestry of Firefox. * Web browsers surrounded by water on all sides. * Using the entirety of your computing resources to do basically nothing. * A phone app that makes your phone display Flying Toasters but only while it's in your pocket. * Computers that are really good at getting hot and not very good at not getting hot. * An air conditioner but backwards. * Marbula One. * Marble races except every marble is armed with an assault rifle. * The year you finally get into Blaseball. * How Blaseball works. * How to detect a fire that you can't see. * Glass Onion: debunked. * A hell planet completely saturated with a volatile gas populated by lava monsters. * Why leave the house? Just send a probe and infer the existence of your neighbors. * What "from" means in "escape from the tank" * The jingle the hydrogen truck plays as it trundles by. * The Snack of the Stars. * Safety testing various propellants. * What your voice sounds like without any transmission medium. * The Gregorian Underwater Choir. * Naming Helium after the sun because that's where we discovered it. * The Lorax threatening you with a bat. * My huge sawed off flashlight. * Stay back, officer, it's just just a flashlight. * Replacing your self-defense rabies bat every time it dies. * Brushing your self-defense bat's teeth. * Dr. Zeus's book of adult poetry. * Is the Death Star brutalist? Can brutalist architecture be round? * Bee Barns. * A four foot tall frog guy who lives in the woods. * A frog guy. A guy who is a frog. * A frog guy caught between two worlds of posture. * A Wikipedia user whose thing is to make photo illustrations of cryptids and extinct animals. * What happens to Pikachu's soul when it dies. * Ghosts: what do they do all day? * Ghosts exist, and they can talk, and they know all about the afterlife, but also they're huge liars.


173. How Much Anxiety Does Your Car Have?

Support Topic Lords on Patreon and get episodes a week early! ( Lords: * Maxx * Tyriq Topics: * Nancy and having a continuous tone for a hundred years * Recommendations * Adding trinkets to other people's time capsules * A Psalm for the Wild-Built Microtopics: * Looking down a lot while you're on a walk. * What is this Meta for? * Discovering that there is a cliff and having a brief high-octane experience. * Sitting on the bus and saying the lore of the land. * A lego minifig that you found on the street. * Fritzi Ritz. * Making millennial shitposts in the 1930s. * Being wholesomely surreal for a hundred years. * Accruing canon. * Simple archetypes that have been honed to a point. * Writing a new punchline to the same joke every day for a hundred years. * Comics going on two silent retreats, one for the setup (at a monastery) and the other for the punchline (at an empty lot) * Coronation St. * The kids we met in 1964. * Whether South Park is still a thing. * Finding success at a young age and staying the same person for the rest of your life. * Retirement or Blade Runner Retirement? * User Friendly. * Web comics that started when the hardest part about making a web comic is uploading an image to the internet. * Web comics going from having bad art to having good art. * Telling someone to like art other than the art they like. * Politely accepting advice and then ignoring it. * Speaking into the void to ask for music recommendations. * If you don't see it, that's what you paid for. * Delivering Nancy comics daily for over 100 years. * Working on the same game for 10 years even though you like different kinds of games now. * Working within the framework of past you. * Every page of a webcomic as a collage of all the previous pages. * Pokey the Penguin: updated sporadically. * Enjoying a webcomic a lot. * Weird semi-robot creatures. * Haribogosean. * Recommending someone a nice leaf. * Wanting to accept recommendations but hating them viscerally. * Tricking music recommendations into someone's life like a fairy tale gremlin. * Introducing hot jams to the people of the future. * Burying a can of cheese for a hundred years. * Extra old tardigrades. * A sealed piggy bank where if you want to get the tardigrades out you have to smash it on the floor. * Opening up your terrarium every so often to swap out the moss. * This wholesome man with this forty year old bottle ecosystem. * The most advanced level of mummification, in which you become a mannequin. * Dumping a pile of garbage in the forest and leaving it to your children in your will. * The Artemis Program. * Returning to the moon to get the geocache back. * Inserting a completely fictional topic into the historical record. * Wax House, Baby! * A fake fact about the world that has been purged from Wikipedia but is still everywhere that scraped the data from Wikipedia. * Chosts from chostville. * The age of monetizing all your hobbies. * Trying to make a human connection via your art. * Digging up, modifying, and reburying other people's time capsules even though nobody's paying you to do it. * Keeping your citizens happy and healthy. * An intentionally altered view of how automated clothing production is. * Going on a journey together with a robot. * Cozy books entirely lacking in high-octane moments.


172. Don't Apply Any Torque To This Bag

Support Topic Lords on Patreon and get episodes a week early! ( Lords: * Alex * Shannon Topics: * Incomprehensible PSAs (Remember to slip, slop, slap, seek and slide) * Games which use player ignorance as a major mechanic (Outer Wilds, Tunic) * Man out of Space Easiest * * Stepped on a plum (overripe plum) (barefoot) * * Australia trends (pre vs post pay, pay at pump vs parking meter vs toll camera) * Bats! Micro & Mega Microtopics: * The Broken Earth Trilogy. * The Lightly-Massaged Earth Trilogy. * Turkish Delight vs. a Turkish Delight candy bar. * A candy that gives you the feeling of nostalgia but no corresponding memories. * Remembering to slip, slop, slap, seek and slide in the kitchen. * The three onomatopoeias for applying sunscreen. * Lamenting to your partner that you forgot to slip. * Posters that just say "don't forget to slip slop slap seek and slide" with no further context. * A cool grandpa following safety instructions. * Actionable snake advice. * Various ways to distinguish goats and sheep. * A music video that is also a drunk driving PSA. * How to use search atoms. * If you're on the train, that's a shame. * Rhyming platitudes about how social media is bad for your mental health and society as a whole. * A music video trying to get across a safe sex message to the kids. * Do They Even Know it's Christmas? * Something jarring to hear on the radio. * A desert wasteland full of crying children. * Tunic. * Reading the manual of the video game you just bought on the drive home. * Evoking the idea of playing old video games. * Jumping puzzles that cost you twenty minutes of your life if you fall. * A Jules Verne conception of the solar system where other planets are a five minute rocket trip away. * Learning a code and keeping it in your brain. * The Hourglass Twins. * Not being sure what to do so you go look at the moon. * The kind of game where most of the fun is figuring out how to play the game. * AAA games trying to make artistic statements about AAA games. * Hatoful Boyfriend as a better Doki Doki Literature Club. * A horror story about pigeons. * An ablative heat shield on your butt. * Manually aiming the rocket without being to look outside of your polyester bag. * The legality of dropping a moose out of a spaceship. * A safety mechanism that is not appealing to aerospace professionals. * Landing an airplane on Mars and then remote-piloting Mars rovers from inside the airplane. * The world's largest saltwater crocodile. * Pulling the quick release flap on the crocodile's mouth. * Don't Go To Space. * It's the 60s, and it's a bag. * A snorkel for when you land in the ocean and can't get out of your foam entombment capsule. * Bringing along a shotgun in case your escape pod lands in Siberia. * Clown First Lover Second. * A single paragraph with 19 parenthetical phrases and no other punctuation. * Deciding to hem your sweatpants. * Plum Nightmare. * Finding two extra poems inside an existing poem. * What to expect when you read a poem. * Whether it's illegal to drive barefoot. * Bare feet and there's textures down here. * The utter lack of technology at the pump. * No-flush toilets. * What kinds of towels they use to clean up messes in Australia. * Public restrooms that automatically eject you if you're not done in ten minutes. * Honeycomb candy with the same texture as instant coffee. * Look to your left; look to your right; one of you is a bat. * Visiting baby bats in the bat hospital. * Bats as pollinators. * Giving stuffed animals to baby bats. * The pollinating and bug-eating ecosystem. * A bat the size of a bat. * Spectacled flying foxes. * Bats reverse-nicheing back into mice. * Bats becoming nocturnal to avoid their creditors.


171. Reasons To Not Throw Your Phone In The Ocean

Support Topic Lords on Patreon and get episodes a week early! ( Lords: * CisHetKayFaber * Kev Topics: * Food from dreams and nightmares * * Han Unification happened in Unicode and every time they add more emojis to the Unicode spec it literally hurts * * The Super Mega Crossword * * Down by the Bay by Raffi * * Video game franchises known for secrets * Five-tined forks * [NMS] * Horrible exceptions to rule34 * After recording, CisHetKayFaber managed to find their holy grail videos depicting the "exception." Jim's example is much better, but Kev was also correct in having faith in human ingenuity. Microtopics: * First time long time. * A very light hobby that is kind of shallow. * Getting really into Rubik's Cube because you already love flash cards. * Being reminded of something right before you were about to forget it. * How best to memorize pizza coding and microphone specs. * Ignoring the room and being annoyed when people talk to you. * Work life balance being too tilted toward life * The King's Hand. * Orange Creamsicle Mashed Potatoes. * M&M fingernails. * A tweet and what happened with it. * Biting something with the wrong texture and having to stare at a wall for ten minutes. * UTF-8 character encoding. * Adding support for Asian languages to Unicode without consulting any native speakers for advice. * The international new global meme language of the internet. * PuzzleMania. * All the downsides of doing a crossword on paper. * Words that just happen a lot when you're constructing a crossword puzzle. * The Elden Ring of crossword puzzles. * Doing the crossword puzzle on paper so that when you're done you can say "looks right to me" and there's no app to tell you you're wrong. * Reading crossword puzzle clues to your wife as she falls asleep. * A time traveler from the future who invented time travel to bring us excellent children's songs. * A national treasure (Canada) * A fly wearing a tie, a bear combing its hair, a llama eating pajamas, &c. * A song intended to be performed improvisationally. * Extending the finger family song by adding more fingers. * Messing the cadence up with your fake mother voice. * Where the watermelons roam. * A mom saying nonsense that really makes you think. * Avoiding your mom because she keeps saying weird shit about a goose kissing a moose. * Unlocking a branch of a storyline by fulfilling a set of conditions. * Subverting overused fantasy tropes. * Finding a cool castle by going down a secret cliffside stairway into a hidden cave. * Systems that point you everywhere on the map. * Secrets of all sorts of scopes. * The Doom thing where they point out that you didn't find all the secrets. * Frog Fractions containing Rule 34 of itself. * Reacting to five-tined fork. * The fork optimization function that decided that four is the right number of tines. * Unknowing a conversation. * A Victorian flex of a fork. * When die-casting was invented. * A shovel with teeth. * Seven-tined sporks. * The Pornography Lord. * Human pairings and human activities that you would expect there to be pornography of. * Linda Hunt smugly declaring "ass to ass" * AI pornographers buying sex dice on eBay. * Weird combinations of words you can plug into a search engine. * People don't want everything; people only want some things. * The Frog Fractions pornography gap.


170. My Brain Likes The Things I Like

Support Topic Lords on Patreon and get episodes a week early! ( Lords: * Tyriq * FourBitFriday in all the places * Cort * Leftover Pumpkin Pie Curry Topics: * Fantasy consoles * * Tyriq's 80s homework * 80s homework playlist: * Tyriq's reaction: * I meant New Kids on the Block, of course. * * You can't slake an earworm with 3/4 of a chorus * * * Aesop Rock - Ruby 81 * Microtopics: * The album you finished. * A song that is entirely made of uncleared samples. * Turning leftover pumpkin pie into delicious pumpkin spice curry. * Interactive Pico-8 holiday cards. * Artificial constraints pegged at a level of technology somewhere in the 80s. * Writing specs for Pico-16 so that you don't accidentally make Pico-16 when you're making Pico-8. * Seeking a box to work within. * The most played entry in your Steam library is something your kids left running for weeks. * A collection of 50 games made for a console that never existed. * List of Fantasy Consoles. * The fantasy console hidden as an Easter egg in the Frog Fractions hat DLC. * Four joysticks in your garage waiting for an arcade machine to be installed into. * Languages that transpile to Lua. * Emulating the PlayStation 9. * A fantasy console for making 4D games. * A popular game engine that starts with the letters UN. * Civilisation's relationship with art. * Hop's Big Adventure in the Gift Dimension. * All the problems with Lua. * The Pico-8 show with the Pico-Lords. * All the things people were doing in the 80s. * Playing an inaudible guitar. * The sound of somebody being chased. * All the good Meat Loaf albums. * An inspiring thing that shows up a lot in your life. * A hip hop album entirely devoid of metaphor. * Listening to the first fifteen seconds of each song on an album. * Drums that are emblematic of everything you hate about the 80s. * A big decade with a lot of things happening. * Gil Scott-Heron. * Music that is distinctly of the 80s vs. music that happened to be released in the 80s. * The musical equivalent of oatmeal. * Not liking the whole chorus, but liking the first chord change in the chorus. * The bass part of Like a Prayer. * Your superpower: knowing what marmite tastes like and knowing your don't like it. * Hyperactive j-pop with way too many chord changes. * Creating a mashup that is better than the sum of its parts, but only for ten seconds. * Purging an earworm with another earworm. * We Need a Bigger Dumpster, by Cheek Face. * The parts of your brain that you're not on speaking terms with. * A photographic memory for all audio except for words. * Songs about love or romance or being horny: get that shit out of here. * "Baby Got Back," a song about Sir Mix A Lot's infant and her extremely loaded diaper. * Waking the sleeping beagle. * Some kind of intentional arson. * Painting an evocative picture of an extremely specific moment in time. * Uncles and aunts and stuff everywhere. * Thank you, Genius! * Bad or text-to-speech bad? * Trying to fix all instances of a given fact that is wrong everywhere on the internet. * Wesley Willis writing the story song "Oil Express" because he wanted to write about oil changes. * Lords Rule, Nuff Said.