My Favorite Things with Casey Price

They might not be raindrops on roses or whiskers on kittens, but that doesn’t mean that we love them any less. Welcome back to My Favorite Things, the weekly column where we grab someone in speculative circles to gab about the greatest in geek. This week we sit down with Speculative Chic contributor and Assistant Editor-in-Chic Casey Price. What does she love when she’s not keeping your editor in line or plotting her next Speculative Chic project? Spoiler alert: thieving cats, Escher-esque quests, feel-good wrecks, a certain man in a red suit, stress-relievers, and Lemons as models. Curious? Read on for more!


I’m going to go ahead and get the guilty favorite out of the way right away. I’m slightly addicted to mobile games. I know that I shouldn’t play them too often, but sometimes I just need to veg. Playing with imaginary cats or trading seashells with anthropomorphic animals (in Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp) is relaxing when I can’t muster up the mental energy for a book or even a TV rerun. These games vary from click-n-play brain fluff to puzzle games that require strategy and thought. Our esteemed editor has talked of her love of Neko Atsume previously, and I’m also a fan too, but I’ll skip my rhapsodies on that particular game this time. Instead, here’s a different cute cat game that I’m fond of: KleptoCats. It’s simple: you have a room and a cat. Pet the cat, feed it treats, and/or give it a bath until its happiness meter reaches 100%, then send it out into the world. While it’s gone you can play mini games or watch an ad for extra coins. The cat returns after a set period of time (which varies wildly, depending on which level you’re in), bringing back a piece of “treasure.” And what kind of treasure, you may be wondering? Behold!

As you can see from the photos, the game isn’t shy about throwing out fun, geeky little Easter Eggs. In addition to items from, respectively, Harry Potter, Terminator, and Rick and Morty, I’ve also received a Pokéball (Pokémon), a Triforce (The Legend of Zelda), and various Nintendo controllers, among so many other things. It’s mindless, delightful fun. The cats themselves come with backstories, for some reason.

From the other end of the spectrum is the gorgeous Monument Valley  (which has a sequel). If you’re familiar with the works of M.C. Escher, then you’ll already have some idea of what the game is like. You play as Ida, a princess, making her way through a series of puzzles on a quest for forgiveness. It’s never fully explained precisely what Ida’s done that requires her to go on this journey, but that doesn’t matter. The point of the game is to solve the puzzles and enjoy the beautiful art. A calm, New Age soundtrack accompanies the game and adds to the experience.

Since I’m already talking about games, it’s easy to switch to one of my favorite movies: Wreck-it Ralph! Please tell me that you’ve watched this adorable film. If you haven’t, and you play any sort of video game, please take a little while to watch the exploits of Ralph, Vanellope von Schweetz, Fix-it Felix Jr, and Sergeant Calhoun. This is a beautifully rendered movie that is a love letter to anybody who ever loved video games. Ralph begins the movie in a meeting that takes place in the center square of Pac-Man’s board (you know, the place that the ghosts come from in the beginning). Classic video game characters make cameos, and other stars of the game world are name checked. Felix, going to answer the door during a party says, “Oh, I’ll bet that’s Mario. Fashionably late, per the norm.” To say that this is a feel-good movie is an understatement. It’s a delightful film that I am hoping gets more attention as we get closer to the sequel coming out later this year.

Speaking of sequels that I’m excited about, my inner fan girl has been going off pretty much nonstop since the Deadpool sequel was announced. It’s no secret around here that I love the man in the red suit. I’ve watched the first film a dozen or so times. I began collecting Deadpool merchandise almost immediately after my first viewing of the film. I have t-shirts, pajamas, slippers, several types of tiny plastic models, both movie soundtracks (did you know that there was a second volume?), the steel book collector’s edition of the movie, and even that purse that I wished for thanks to one of my best friends. I even have a hat, handmade by a charming older woman who does the convention circuit as the Crochetty Old Hat Lady. I just need a scarf to go with it.

I may have to make that scarf myself, but that’s fine with me. Lately I’m really enjoying crochet. I’m still a novice, so I can only make a few basic things. I’m working on a scarf for my husband, and another for myself. I accidentally made myself a cloche hat last winter. It’s very satisfying to sit with a pile of yarn and, through a series of knots, transform that yarn into something that’s useful. It’s a fantastic stress-reliever.

Works in progress + accidental hat

I need all of the stress relief that I can take (can’t we all?). Sometimes, when I just cannot with my life, I will sink into a soft place and watch TV for hours at a time. I’ve recently re-watched the entire first season of The Good Place. I go back and watch The Golden Girls often. My most recent favorite, and my non-speculative/non-nerd adjacent favorite thing is 30 Rock. Many a creative, self-proclaimed quirky woman had identified with Tina Fey’s Liz Lemon, and I am no different. What I have found that I love the most this time around is the very deep friendship that Liz has with Alec Baldwin’s character, Jack Donaghy. I really appreciate that the show never gave Liz and Jack even an ounce of chemistry together. It’s so rare to see an honest-to-goodness, straightforward friendship between a man and a woman in almost any media. I also, weirdly, find inspiration in Liz always managing to hop back up when something pushes her down.

Know of any good games I should take a look at? Tips for a beginner in the world of yarn? Wanna talk old TV? Speak up in the comments!


Throughout her life, Casey Price has studied science (badly), history (passably) and literature (quite well!) at various institutes of higher learning.  She received a Bachelor’s degree in English with a concentration in Literature (with a particular focus on England’s Romantic and Victorian periods).  She currently resides in a small town in Virginia (after gracing Florida and Texas with her charming presence for several years apiece).  She has one spouse and three small dogs who all require a great deal of time and attention.  She spends her days working in a pharmacy and her nights watching too much television, playing too many Nintendo games, and reading too much urban fantasy.  On her days off, she fights crime!  Or she toils away at one of several writing projects that she hopes will see the light of day, someday.  Whichever is easiest.  Usually the crime-fighting.

You can find Casey at https://caseycantina.wordpress.com/
Twitter: @CantinaCasey
Instagram: the.casey.price

4 Comments

  • Shara White January 15, 2018 at 1:08 pm

    You know, you told me about KleptoCats a while ago and I still haven’t looked into it. It sounds adorable!

    Reply
  • Weasel of Doom January 15, 2018 at 2:04 pm

    I am very intrigued by the thieving cats, too! Right now, I have Gardenscapes, Two Dots, Dots & Co, Neko Atsume, and WordBubbles on my phone. Mostly, I play Gardenscapes…

    Reply
  • Lane Robins January 15, 2018 at 2:05 pm

    Monument valley looks interesting and I’m not a game player.

    Reply
  • Kelly McCarty January 17, 2018 at 12:24 am

    KleptoCats looks like fun. I also really love Deadpool and I’m hoping that the sequel lives up to the original.

    Reply

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