NERDS AROUND TOWN

Black jackets, NASA engineers and gaming expo

ART BY JESUS RODRIGUEZ

Born with a comic book in one hand and a remote control in the other, Cory DLG is the talent of Conroe's very own Nerd Thug Radio, Sports and Wrestling. Check out the podcast replay of the FM radio show at www.nerdthugradio.com!

Hey Nerds!

Alright guys it's Tuesday, whoop! Yesterday we organized the week and today is the day that we start crushing it!

GOOD DEED OF THE DAY

It's important to recognize how expensive it is to run a large beautiful park in the middle of a sprawling downtown like Houston. The Memorial Park Conservancy has it's hands full most of the year keeping the park beautiful for us to use at our leisure. The 2019 Brunch Run presented by Green Mountain Energy benefiting The Memorial Park Conservancy is April 6th at 8am and proceeds go towards the parks conservatorship in order to help keep the park looking nice and lovely. It's great to have somewhere to appreciate as you go about your business downtown day in and day out and Memorial Park is a fairly massive place to keep nice and every bit counts. So get out there and run a 5k for charity, plus when I hear the word brunch, I immediately think mimosas, you know what I'm saying?

A NEW PLAYER HAS JOINED THE GAME

A new brewery has opened downtown and one of the coolest things about it, is that it's owned and operated by several NASA engineers. What could possibly be more Houston than space scientists and brewing beer? Every city has things that kind of perfectly sum up that city's experience, San Antonio has the Riverwalk, Austin a live music bar, for Houston, a craft brewery run by NASA engineers is pretty perfect. There's literally no measuring the level of cool that inspires in me. I mean, these guys build stuff that goes into space, I bet their beers are out of this world (see what I did there). It's called True Anomaly which is a nerd term for sure and the other interesting part of everything they do is that they've decided to focus on the largely untouched Sours market. There are different types of beer recipes from IPAs to Stouts to Sours and honestly Sours is probably the least explored in a potentially crowded market for a big reason, if you make a bad sour, then people don't want to drink it. It's a risk but like all great risks it's also an opportunity, because it's an emptier segment of the market. If you have a second get out there and try True Anomaly brewing.

THE NEXT UMBRELLA ACADEMY

Since it's my great joy and pleasure to scour the internet for cool things to bring back for you to partake in, I find great joy and pleasure in bringing this next project to your viewing pleasure, The Black Jackets. This is a kickstarter that has already reached its goal so it means it's going to get made and I recommend checking it out. Featuring a team of teenage monster hunters trying to solve the mystery of their missing parents, it's already got the feel and design and look of a great animated or television project. This really gives me like early Umbrella Academy vibes and makes me think that overall this is one of those projects that has a massive marketing opportunity ahead of it. If you're anything like me it's always fun to get behind these kinds of projects early and then watch how far they can go. So check out Black Jackets on kickstarter.com and support an indy artist today!

FIRE UP THE RED BULL

Saturday night down at GTX Esports on the West side of Houston they are having a lock in gaming night. All night, you're there hanging out and gaming. They can accommodate almost 40 people so you know this is going to be pretty epic. They are set up for everything from Overwatch to Starcraft to League of Legends, and all the big games in-between, so the action never gets old. $25 bucks a head is a little steep considering food is extra but it does seem like a cool thing to get out there and get your game on.

ARE YOU NOT ENTERTAINED

If that wasn't enough gaming for you in one weekend. Sam Houston State University is hosting this Friday and Saturday an Esports Gaming Expo. Featuring panels about potential careers in the field including marketing and partnerships, and speakers like Houston Outlaws Director of partnerships, John Spiher and Andrew Barton of Clutch Gaming. There will be all kinds of conversations about different opportunities in gaming for interested parties. There will also be rigs out there for people to play on and get their game on. So go hang out among some gaming geeks out there Friday and Saturday at the Esports Gaming Expo.

EVEN THOUGH NOBODY ASKED ME

So it's been a little while and honestly the information coming out of the Deer Park incident hasn't gotten a lot better. The city has already filed a lawsuit to recoup lost resources spent handling the multi-day fire, and advisories have been issued about eating seafood that comes from the water in that area currently. The lawsuit might be a double edged sword because while it may be necessary it's forcing ITC to start to play defense and maybe not be as forthcoming and helpful as they might have been without it. I'm not sure how much that will help their case in the long run, the likelihood that they did nothing wrong seems low in my opinion between the breach in the drainage wall letting chemicals into the water, and the fire restarting a few times while they tried to empty the tanks of the remaining chemicals that they could never identify quick enough in the first place, but we'll see. One positive note I suppose the dead dolphin that washed up on shore the other day didn't die from chemicals released during the fire they say. So that's a positive.

I'm going to jump out and wish you guys a great Tuesday and remind everyone to be kind to each other and try a little harder to have a great day! I'm coming back tomorrow and we'll be bringing more good times your way. Feel free to check out my digital short story The Wilson House, or buy a shirt from Side Hustle Ts where every shirt is now under $20 or listen to Nerd Thug Radio or support our Patreon Page. Thoughts, complaints, events and comments can be sent to corydlg@gmail.com.

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Texans vs. Vikings could have fans in attendance. Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images

The Houston Texans say it's time that fans were allowed to cheer on the home team at NRG Stadium. On Thursday, the team announced extensive safety protocols that would put 15,000 fans in the stands for the Week 4 game against the Minnesota Vikings on Oct. 4.

While the Texans are awaiting permission from city and county officials to host a limited number of fans - socially distant and wearing masks – no plans have been announced how much tickets will cost, and who'll have the opportunity to buy them.

You have to love the free enterprise system: hundreds of tickets for the Oct. 4 game already are on sale on secondary market websites. Lower bowl tickets are going for $800 and up. If you don't mind sitting in the nose bleeds, tickets can be had for around $250.

So the question becomes, if you had the chance, would you attend the Texans game in early October? The tickets are big bucks, and there is a whammy – COVID-19. While the rate of COVID-19 infections is on the decline in Houston, the virus remains a major factor in our daily lives, and there's no guarantee that the pandemic won't spike here again.

Here's the rub, at least for me. Of all the sports we have in Houston, a Texans game might be lowest on my wish list of attending in person. Television does NFL games the best. There are dozens of cameras, so when a receiver catches a pass on the sidelines, we get several views, in slow motion even, to see if the receiver's feet were in bounds. We can almost feel the crunch of a quarterback sack. We get highlights of other games. You don't have to sit next to a face painter like David Puddy.

The NFL is a made-for-TV production. Which is, I suspect, part of the reason the Texans rarely open the roof at NRG Stadium. With the roof closed, the field becomes a controlled TV studio, with no worries of weather pranks.

Television doesn't do basketball or baseball nearly as well. Conversely, the experience of attending those games is terrific fun. What beats eating a couple of dogs at an Astros game? Is there even a traditional food at NFL or NBA games?

The Texans promise that strict safety rules will be enforced. And I believe them. Fans will be scattered over the 67,000-seat stadium. I'm not sure how much of a home field advantage that will be. Most of the crowd noise will come from pre-recorded tapes.

Here's one worry. Sure fans will sit apart and socially distanced. But what will happen when the game is over? Will fans file out in orderly, non-contagious single file? I flew Southwest a few weeks ago. The airline makes a big deal – we don't sell the middle seat. Passengers kept their distance during the flight. When the landed, you know how it is, everybody got up and piled into the aisle, shoulder to shoulder for several minutes.

What will happen if some goofball takes off his/her mask during the Texans game? Will there be enough security to handle each case?

Baseball is planning to have some fans attend post-season games at Minute Maid Park next month. UH Cougars, the Dynamo and Dash are playing in front of small crowds. It remains to be seen how safe – or how risky – allowing fans at sports events will be.

Will parents let their kids attend? Is waiting for a vaccine the smart play? If President Trump is right, that could be only a matter of weeks away. If scientists and doctors are right, nestle in for pandemic life another year. Even if scientists do come up with a vaccine, how many Americans will roll up their sleeve? Some believe, in the case of COVID-19, the cure may be worse than the disease. Not me, the moment Dr. Fauci says the vaccine is safe and effective, I'm sprinting to CVS.

The thinnest of silver linings, if ever there was a year worth sitting out, 2020 has been it for Houston sports fans. The Astros are scratching to stay above .500 (their present position), Jose Altuve hasn't had an extra base hit or RBI in almost a month, and Justin Verlander is throwing bullpens on his way to recovery. The Rockets are searching for a new coach, and possibly another team willing to take Russell Westbrook in a trade. The Texans season could go either way, we'll know if a few short weeks.

Why the rush to fill stadiums? The NBA is thriving in a bubble. Why not baseball and football? There's a fine line between safe and sorry.

The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo already has safety plans for next year, including masks and distancing. That will be interesting. Good luck controlling crowds pushing and shoving for corn dogs and funnel cakes.

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