From the first moment a creature opens its eyes to the last time it shuts them, what it has is identity. We are each the main character of our own story, whether hero or villain. What we have is a definition, whether opposing what we detest or nurturing that which we love, our consciousness is the prism through which we perceive the world and all the majesty in it. What happens then when we lose that identity? When we’re no longer captain of the football team, or the aunt who has all the answers, what is it that defines us when we lose the foundation that we built ourselves on? Are we the facets of the stone or simply the reflections on them? What happens then, when we turn our stone?
I've been playing Dungeons & Dragons for over twenty years, and during that time, I've seen all manner of ways to heighten the immersion of the hobby, be it fully ensconcing yourself in foam armor and heading out into the woods for a weekend, skillfully crafting ancient-looking maps and scrolls with tea and patience, or referring to each party member as only their character's name throughout the entire night. One thing that always breaks the immersion is when you reach for your Funyuns and Mountain Dew (unless you're in the Mad Mage's cells...then anything's fair game), or dipping E.L. Fudge cookies in red wine (The author does not admit to being party to this behavior, but heartily recommends against in the in strongest terms.), or just annihilating the sleeve of Oatmeal Pies. Well, friends, some great minds in gaming have taken the next logical step in game session food immersion and created a cookbook full of dishes from the most famous of the Realms in the D&D canon, including Greyhawk, Eberron, Faerun, and Krynn. Steeped in the countless tomes of lore and the rich history of the world's best-known role-playing game, there has been a lot of love poured into making this book a recipe for not only gastronomic experimentation, but camaraderie and shared experiences, as well.
The world is a big, scary place right now. Things are changing that are very much beyond our control, and the world that we lived and laughed in just months ago seems like an alien memory, fading with time. What's amazing is how much people are pulling together at all levels, whether it's a bakery keeping its doors open by selling flour and yeast to home bakers, or a community taking care of its elder members by buying them groceries. There is a level of unity that is foundational to the way we live our lives and our willingness to put ourselves out there for others.