Thursday 16 July 2020

The Portable Wargame Library

The bottom two shelves belong to yours truly whilst SWMBO has the top....

....and with the doors closed peace and tranquility reigns!

As regular readers of the blog will know the main bulk of my collection resides in the man cave - the loft to be specific. This is really handy, especially as SWMBO is an avowed minimalist when it comes to interior design and decor. She also is not keen on having books on display. As the equivalent of a domestic papal dispensation I was allowed to have a single shelf in the lounge for books. This was very handy as it meant that I did not have to keep trotting up and down into the loft every time I wanted to check something.

As an aside I am sure there is deity somewhere that ensures that when you have a pile of six books in front of you the information you need will either be in a book that you do not have or in one that is, in my case, in the loft.

As part of the recent lounge refurbishment we had two units ripped out either side of the fireplace and replaced with a custom built cupboard one side and the TV unit on the other. The previous version of the cupboard was filled with a variety of stuff - paperbacks, cds, tealights and other bits and pieces. The new version has been designated as a book cupboard by the management and so I was delighted to see that her modest library of new age style reading material, travel guides and a selection of street maps only took up a singe shelf.

Imagine then, my delight and surprise when SWMBO informed me that the other two shelves were for me.

Working quickly (before she changed her mind) I managed to spirit tw shelves worth of books from the loft and into their new abode. These will doubtlessly be rotated as projects wax and wane but there is sufficient variety to hand to keep even my most esoteric flights of fancy satisfied.

Best of all, when the doors are closed SWMBO cannot see them.

Domestic harmony is all.....

For the record there are copies of the Portable Wargame series in evidence if you look closely!


BigLee said...

I'm lucky my 'significant other' doesn't have a dictate about books on display...our living room is wall to wall books...and the bedroom...and the kitchen... To be fair most of them are her Cookery books. There are at least 500 in the living room alone, so no matter how many military books I buy she can't complain.

Paul Liddle said...

I have wargame stuff in every room in the house bar the bathroom at the moment, I even have some figures drying in the back porch.

David Crook said...

Hello there old chap,

Laurel is not keen on seeing books around so this represents a really good compromise for me. She enjoys reading but just does not like seeing books dotted about.

Two shelves worth will work well for me and I fully expect to be rotating the collection from time to time. For the record I have a further 14 shelves worth in the man cave....

I hope all is well with you and yours.

Take care and all the best,


David Crook said...

Hello Paul,

Occasionally I have some bits and pieces out and about - mostly painted stuff drying - but for the most part I can ‘spread out’ in the man cave.

This ensures domestic harmony at all times!

All the best,


nundanket said...

I notice that you’ve sneaked one of your (two!) copies of A Bridge Too Far onto the top shelf, you crafty devil.

You could try slipping it amongst gardening books on the basis it’s about Market Garden. 😁

By the way, I wish my nearest and dearest was similarly organised with reading material as SWMBO.

David Crook said...

Hello there nundanket,

One of the copies of A Bridge Too Far (the paperback) belongs to SWMBO as it is a family heirloom. Her uncle was captured at Arnhem and indeed is mentioned in the book. His name was Staff Sergeant Gordon Jenks and he was a Glider Pilot. SWMBO’s elder brother Gordie was named after him and also served in the Airborne in both the 1st and 3rd Parachure Regiments. He saw active service in the Radfan campaign.

I have always been fascinated with Operation Market Garden and fully intend gaming it at some point.

After all, “It’ll be a tale you can tell your grandchildren....and mightily bored they’ll be...!”

All the best,


Steve J. said...

Glad to see domestic bliss has been maintained. When lcokdown is lifted for us we do need to have a mjor clear out of various cupboards that are just full of 'stuff'. Hopefully this will then free up space for my toys;).

Ray Rousell said...

Very neat and tidy!

joppy said...

So what is her reason for not having books on display? Surely one of the joys of visiting people is examining g their bookshelves?

Geordie an Exiled FoG said...

Might just have to copy that!

Martin Rapier said...

You can never go wrong with Market Garden as a source of gaming, along with various tactical actions I've done the entire campaign four times with figures and countless times with board and computer games.

My wife is a bibliophile, so our house lined with books, although mine are little more low brow than hers.

David Crook said...

Hi Steve J,

Never underestimate the value of domestic harmony! Most of our ‘stuff’ goes when we do a boot sale or to the charity shops but it never seems to stop us accumulating more!

All the best,


David Crook said...

Hi Ray,

It is easy to keep it tidy which is a bonus. The man cave however.....

All the best,


David Crook said...

Hi Joppy,

You may think that.....I couldn’t possibly comment.....

All the best,


David Crook said...

Hi Geordie,

It was a simple idea and simply executed. I am very pleased asI am sure you can imagine.

All the best,


David Crook said...

Hi Martin,

It is a campaign I have fought It a few times and it always gives some incredibly tight games. It is one of my WW2 favourites.

All the best,


Paul O'G said...

Very shipshape!

David Crook said...

Hello there Paul O’G,

Great to hear from you old chap and I hope all is well with the clan!

It does look very tidy and domestic harmony has been restored!

Drop me a line when you can, it would be great to have a proper catch up.

All the very best,


Chris Kemp said...

Do you not find that "a variety of stuff - paperbacks, cds, tealights and other bits and pieces." equals essential items that must be to hand, whereas books are "man stuff that must be out of the way"? Happily, Suzanne is also an avid reader.

I've always wanted to wargame Market Garden in a hallway somewhere :-)

Regards, Chris.

David Crook said...

Hi Chris,

I had not actually thought about it like that but it is a fair point!

Market Garden in a hall would be fun. I have seen it fought over a succession of table tennis tables before and that looked like a lot of fun.

All the best,


Archduke Piccolo said...

Hi David -
I'm probably quite a bit luckier than you are - having books all over the house. Mind you, as many of them are old text books they could probably be deep-sixed. Off the top of my head I count 9 sets of book shelves in this house, spread around 4 rooms and the hallway.

But my desk in the lounge, at which I never sit, is piled with all sorts of (mostly) wargamery bits and pieces. Methinks it has all got out of hand, as I don't really have a man-cave...