Shore Leave is the non-Trek culture arm of the Deep Space Spines website, posted every other Tuesday.

Through the good graces of a father with an extra ticket, I went to my first Texas Rangers game in years a few Fridays ago. I grew up in a baseball family, but distanced myself from extreme fandom and emotional investment after the 2011 World Series ended in disaster. (“Nelson Cruz” is still a dirty word in my house.) Since they’re pretty much already out of playoff contention this year, I saved my excitement for Globe Life Park’s newest testament to deep-fried American excess, the Dilly Dog.

The Rangers have previously been in the limelight for their experiments in culinary mad science, so it’s nice that even though they’re not a great team to watch, they still know how to get attention in other ways.

Even though I got mine well before game time, the grease tasted old, which I’ll be charitable and chalk up to the fact that they have to have several made up ahead of time due to their popularity. The pickle and the dog, however, were both high-quality. It works best when you get all the elements in a single bite. Toward the end, it starts falling apart hard, so even if it doesn’t look like the sort of thing you need a plate for, it’s nice that they give you one. Overall, I give it an 8 out of 10. Perhaps if I get around to another Rangers game and take out a second mortgage, I’ll try that Boomstick.

Though I don’t usually go in for ebooks if I can help it, StoryBundle is running an offer that was just too good to pass up: they’re offering ten (10) titles in the Boss Fight Books series for as little as $15. You know the 33 1/3 series? Boss Fight Books are like that, except they focus on a single video game instead of a single album. The bundle offers ruminations on an astounding variety of high-quality classic games; even listing just two, three, or even four would do a disservice to the rest of the list. In addition, you can choose to reserve a portion of your donation amount for the Prisoners Literature Project.

Spelunky by Derek Yu

Just one of the titles being offered.

As of this posting, you still have about two days to take advantage of the bundle. The highly impressionistic nature of the books means they often have a tendency to encourage purple prose and get a little too far up their own butts, but if you like juicy deep dives on video games, they’re hard to beat for pure pleasure.

Shore Leave was made possible by donations to the Deep Space Spines Patreon. If you like the site and you’d like to see a wider range of features on it, please consider pledging a dollar a month. Even that small amount is super-helpful and will go toward buying the books, keeping the site going, and fulfilling Patreon goals that have been met. Thanks for reading (and also pledging, if you do that)!