Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Der Alte Fritz's Birthday

The parade of the regimental flags on DAF's birthday.
Fife & Drum Continentals painted as the 1st Pennsylvania Regiment, circa 1776.

Today is my birthday, the 60th year on this good Earth. My mother always says that December 18th seems the coldest day of the Winter, but fortunately, we seem to be in another period of abnormal warmth here in Hesse Seewald, what with temperatures in the mid 40s Fahrenheit. We enjoy it while it lasts and hope for a Green Christmas once again.

Der Alte Fritz (center in blue shirt) supervising the Battle of Kolin in South Bend, Indiana back in the 1990s.

I celebrated turning 60 by going to the pharmacy and getting my shingles shot. They won't give you the shot until you are at least 60. So when the pharmacist asked me, "are you 60 or older?" I said, with much emphasis and a great big grin, "oh YES I AM!" If you had chickenpox earlier in your life, then you have the shingles virus in you where it lies dormant for many years. If you are unfortunate enough to get shingles, then you know that it can be very painful. So I eagerly looked forward to finally getting the vaccination.

On to more interesting things though. I have been working on a painting commission of late, some old Ral Partha pirates and Three Musketeers figures for one of my clients. He wants to give the figures to his son for Christmas, so the pressure was on to complete the order. Fortunately, there were only 13 figures so I was able to finish the commission over the course of this past weekend. Since each figure was different, painting the collection was kind of fun.

Now that the commission is done, I am free to paint some figures for myself. Undoubtedly I will want to work on a regiment of Fife & Drum Continentals in Hunting Shirts as these are new figures recently added to the range and I am eager to see what a full battalion of 24 to 30 figures looks like. I also have a regiment of British centre company infantry for the AWI on the painting table (Fife & Drum figures of course) and some of the new Kings Mountain AWI Highlanders awaiting in the painting queue. Bill Nevins has commissioned this range of figures, Perry compatible, but small enough to fit right in with the Fife & Drum British, so I plan to paint the 42nd Black Watch Regiment and add them to my British army. It may be awhile before Fife & Drum can get around to adding Highlanders, so I am glad that these figures are available.

Over the Christmas holiday week (post Christmas through New Years) I plan to host a SYW game at my house with Bill Protz and some of our regular group of gamers. We are going to stage Charles Grant's Lobositz scenario on my 15 x 6ft table (with two parallel 2.5ft wide side tables for added depth). So I will have to take down all of the AWI terrain (for the Pitzer's Ridge game shown in Battlegames magazine) and set up the Lobositz terrain, including my custom-built Lobosch Hill (or at least a highly stylized version of the hill). The Prussians have not been doing very well during our 2012 campaign season, so here is hoping that Frederick can close out the year with a solid win over the Austrians on December 27th. There will be pictures of the victory. I promise.


  1. Happy Birthday!

    I've had the shingles - not so fun!

    I'll be rooting for the Prussians during your game

  2. Yep! Hope you and the family enjoyed yourselves and did something special to mark the occasion. Happy Birthday!

    Best Regards,


  3. Happy Birthday, and what a grand game as always!

  4. Very Happy Birthday sir from all at the Duchy of Tradgardland!

  5. Happy Birthday!

    It sounds like a compromise is in order. A nice new hunting shirt unit to the painting table, with the photos to follow on the Lobositz terrain! Might an AWI battle be fought over it before or after the Prussians and the Austrians slug it out?

  6. A little bit like one of those t shirts you used to get ... in this case "its my birthday and all I got was a shingles shot" :o)

    Happy Birthday - and appreciate this may be late but I only read it last night, so a late "well done" for your article in "Wargames, Soldiers & Strategy" issue 63... enjoyed it very much...

  7. Happy Birthday from a sunny but cold Italy !

  8. Many happy returns Majesty from a humble musketeer.

    (The most discerning wargamers have their birthday on 18th December).

  9. Happy birthday, and many more!!!

    Looking forward to photos of all the upcoming games/painting.

  10. Happy birthday!

    And if it is any consolation, in “sunny California” it was 27 degrees this morning, so maybe your mother was right.