Nuadha's Tale

Ignorance can be tolerated, where reason is left free to combat it. -Thomas Jefferson

Friday, May 31, 2002

My desk is in shambles. There are piles of paperwork everywhere and I have no clue how to begin digging it out. I haven't gotten much work done today since I'm still recovering from yesterday, but the work coming in hasn't slowed one bit. People just come by and drop faxes, memos, etc. on my desk and most of the time they ignore the fact that I have an inbox for these things. They just toss the papers on my chair, the phone, on top of the monitor, anywhere they please. I'm not feeling energetic enough to deal with this today, so I've let it go. The worst part was that earlier this week my supervisor was commenting how organized my desk looked. Ha.

Thursday, May 30, 2002

Sure enough...
I'm sick. I called in this morning. Actually, I think I was coming down with this the last couple of days. When I found out yesterday about people in my department being sick, I figured that explained why I was lacking energy (even more so than I usually do at work). My throat is sore and I'm tired. Most of the morning, I've was tired enough to lie in bed, but not tired enough to sleep. I listened to the sounds of distant train and birds while waiting to fall asleep. I also read a few more issues of the Watchmen. It's been about 7 years since I read them, so a lot of the story seems new to me.

Wednesday, May 29, 2002

There's a couple of people out sick today and a few more saying they don't feel too good. One of the women out sick was told by her doctor that she has a very contagious viral infection. Great. You'd think the people who are still here and feeling sick would be considerate and leave, but "I don't want to use my sick days." That's what they're for! Go home and get better instead of staying here and spreading the germs!

Tuesday, May 28, 2002

She's back! I'm happy! It's nice to have the house to oneself for a few days, but I'm happier having Carla here.

I love long weekends. It's too bad they have to end. I woke up, cleaned the house a little and started to put all my comics away. Then something stopped me. It's such a pain dragging them out, so I decided to try and finish getting them organized while watching a video tape of the pilot episode for Kindred: The Embraced. So, Carla arrived home with all the furniture moved to the side from me vacuuming and comics all over the living room floor.

After talking to Carla for a little bit, I put my comics away and went outside to work on the lawn and put some shelves in the shed. Then we went out to buy a rose bush to replace one of our bushes that didn't make it through the winter and a quilt. I finished the day doing some reading.

I read a couple of good reviews online and JG said it was really good, so I'll probably end up buying it. I also saw online that it has art by Vess and Kaluta.

Sunday, May 26, 2002

Look kids! Doonesbury!
Today's Doonesbury is a good one. I remember skipping over Doonesbury when I was a kid. Just another example of how things change. Now it's the first comic strip I read.

I woke up with an allergy/sinus headache. They have been really bad for the last week. I'm not sure if it's the weather change or pollen in the air, but it's getting really old. (Trust me, I get them more often than I mention them in my blog.) I meditated for a little bit and then forced myself to go outside and do yard work. Usually I can enjoy yardwork, but not when I'm not feeling good. One of my friendly neighbors lets me use his lawnmower since it's much better than mine, making the job a whole lot easier than it would be. Then after cleaning up, I went to Ryder's to play a pick-up game of 40K. I also stopped at Borders Outlet while I was out and bought some books. I spent the afternoon reading, watching TV and organizing my comic books. The box of "giveaway comics" has some new additions. There are so many comics that I own and will probably never reread. Many comics aren't worth holding on to. Of course, there are also the "must-keeps". I came across The Watchmen while cleaning and set them aside to re-read as well as the old Suicide Squad comics. I also found a Madame Xanadu comic from the early 80's that I bought and never read. I read it tonight and really enjoyed it. Madame Xanadu appeared in the 80's run of the Spectre (another "must-keep") and acted as a spiritual advisor to Jim Corrigan and The Spectre (during the 80's run they were two seperate characters). It was neat to see a comic where she was the main character and the comic also had a neat poster insert by Michael Kaluta.

Anybody want Judge Dredd comics? Lobo? Hey, there's a good reason I'm giving these comics away.

Saturday, May 25, 2002

Warhammer 40K: Attack of the Robots
I went over to Cody's earlier to play a couple games of 40K. I was playing the Necrons, a race of robotic terminator-like robots that serve a god-like race called the C'Tan, a race of ancient "Star Vampires." The Necron army was what originally got me in to Warhammer 40K, but besides a few troops they never released anything more for them. So, I went on to play the Space Marines and eventually the Tyranid (a race of monstrous creatures like the bugs in Heinlein's Starship Troopers). Well, they finally started releasing new miniatures for the Necron army and a new army book with the rules. I haven't been plaing in a while but the new Necron minis have pulled me back in.

Cody and I have started playing a narrative campaign between my Necron and his Tau army. (The Tau are a bunch of goody-two-shoes that fight for "the greater good." Bah.) With each game we develop the story a little more and increase the size of our armies. The storyline has been about a mysterious (everything about the Necron is mysterious) attack on a Tau planet. The Necron have been attacking bases around the planet and the Tau are trying to find where on the planet they are coming from.

We don't write up stories around the battles or anything but having an idea of the story in our own minds makes the game more interesting. 40K may be a strategy game but as a roleplayer I like to know why my army is fighting. Why are the Necron fighting? I can't tell you that. If I told you, it wouldn't be "terribly mysterious." Of course, in the last game we played my Necrons decimated the Tau, so they may never live to find out themselves.

Writing Exercise: The Rain
I was trying to remember a poem I wrote once and all I could remember were the first two lines. I decided to do a writing exercise with it and this is what came out:

Last night I cried myself to sleep.
Tonight I'll do the same,
but first I go and wait outside,
I wait for it to rain,
to wash away the bitterness,
to wash away the pain,
to wash away the memories
to wash away your name.

I wrote the original poem years ago and I'm sure the original was much better, but the important thing is that I broke through a bit of this writing block I've had. My writing has been flat and boring for years (in my opinion) and I haven't tapped into much emotions while writing. When I went to start this writing, I remembered the original first lines and the pain I felt when I wrote them and the words came out with ease. This is the way it used to be before I started worrying about if what I wrote is any good. When I started editing myself as I wrote it all went downhill.

Oh, and this poem in no way reflects how I feel these days. It was just an old pain half-remembered.

Friday, May 24, 2002

Writing Games
Jeff Noon, one of my favorite authors, and a friend have started a writing game that they are sharing with the world. Very cool. It also appears that he has another book out that I would have to import to read.

I decided to type up some of the rules I used in the Amber games I have run. This is a rough draft of the Specialization rules.

Nobilis Diceless Roleplaying
There's another diceless roleplaying game in town. It's called Nobilis and it sounds cool. Here's a description I found:

Nobilis is a diceless role playing game set in the modern times. Players role play incarnations of reality, called Nobles or Powers. Examples of this sort of character and genre include the Sandman series by Neil Gaimen, "Creatures of Light and Darkness" by Roger Zelazny, and the anime film "Princess Mononoke". The characters are quite powerful, although they serve still more powerful beings, called Imperators.

I'll have to look for more stuff on this game later.

Alexander Trump
A while back I doctored a picture in photoshop for a trump of Alexander. Yes, it's Spike.

Skinny Puppy
Listening to Too Dark Park. There is one song where the lyrics sing, "kicking the habit....kicking the habit..." I keep thinking "kicking the hobbit...." I am most amused.

Wednesday, May 22, 2002

Lesson learned: When gluing miniatures I need to make sure my hair is in a ponytail. I leaned forward to get a better look at a mini I was gluing and got a bunch of "Zap-a-Gap" in my hair.

Just blogged and lost my post once again. This happens way too often. I'm not typing it all up again. Maybe later.

Monday, May 20, 2002

I came home from work and had dinner with Carla. After dinner, she left. Yeah, I'm living "La Vida Bachelor." I started the "James Film Series", where I will watch all the movies I like that Carla can't stand. The Film series started off with a bang last night as I watched the 1979 "classic", Battlestar Galactica.

Vanilla Coke
The deli downstairs at my work has it in. It's....interesting. I think I like it. I hope they are coming out with a Diet Vanilla Coke.

Started the day by mowing the lawn and doing yard work. In the afternoon, I went over to Cody's to play some Warhammer 40K. The Necron book is out and I was looking forward to seeing how my Necron army fared with the new rules. They did admirably. I didn't win the scenario, but they came close. Cody and I set up a tough scenario for me to play.

Changeling: The Shattered Crystal
Played Changeling on Sunday. Neither Carla or Neil was there, so I wanted to focus the game on wrapping up the more mundane subplots in the game. I realized quick that when characters are toting around the Holy Grail and The Sword of Light, they lose interest in dealing with the little things. The whole "saving the world" thing becomes more important to them. Go figure.

The next game should wrap up this campaign and then we'll take a break for a couple of months before returning. The new game should be able to continue some of the abandoned subplots from the current game.

Affirmitive Action
I'm a believer. I wasn't always. I used to think that the only way for a truly equal society was for every person to be judged by their own merits without skin color coming in to the equation in any way. As I grew up and saw how the world really worked I realized it wasn't that easy. At least affirmitive action is a step in the right direction.

Friday, May 17, 2002

The game went pretty well last night. Our two heroes were called on to retreive a nuclear warhead stolen by the Clown Prince of Crime, The Joker. Their armor deflected the bullets of his henchman pretty well, but they learned that Hyenas have pretty powerful jaws. It ran later than I wanted it to because, as usual, I didn't watch the clock. When I'm GMing, I tend to lose track of time.

Which RPG system are you?

by Mr. Vimes

Wednesday, May 15, 2002

No time on computer lately. Not even enough time to blog.

Damned hungry this morning. Don't know why. Can't wait for lunch.

Monday, May 13, 2002

A generation that ignores history has no past and no future.
-Robert Heinlein

I woke up this morning with a sinus headache. First I woke up at 5 am and took some Sudafed and Ibuprofen. Two hours later, it's time to get up for work. Sinus headache? Still there. I took my Claritin, vitamins and more Ibuprofen. It doesn't hurt bad enough for me to stay home, so I get ready for work. Now, six hours later, I am at work. Sinus headache? It hasn't gone anywhere. I'm taking drugs, but instead of getting any better, its slowly getting worse.

A nice birthday. Good gifts. Good food. Good company.

One of the nicer gifts (not the nicest) was a book Carla gave me. I told her I wanted a book on how to improve your writing. I like to write and I am trying to write a roleplaying game book, but sometimes I go to write my ideas and thoughts down and my mind goes blank. Carla bought me a book called Writing Down the Bones. It takes a Buddhist perspective on writing and it talks about things like approaching writing with a beginner's mind and writing as a form of meditation. One of the things it suggests is something I have heard before, but never had explained the exact reason that a person should try it. It suggests writing just to write and not worrying about quality. Doing this helps the words flow better. Take a notebook and fill up X number of pages or decide on a certain amount of time that you will write and keep writing. Since you are just writing and it's not something you are likely to share, you don't have to go back and edit. You can just write.

I was going to do something similiar when I started this blog. I wanted to log in and just blog about anything. Not really worry about it. Just blog. Somewhere along the lines I started worrying about what I was saying. I knew friends would be reading this and I wanted to make sure it sounded OK. "Is this too personal? Do I sound silly? Are those the best words I could use?" Whenever I start thinking like that, I usually don't end up bloggin'.

Sunday, May 12, 2002

Happy birthday to me!

Saturday, May 11, 2002

Hobby Shop
Went to Ryder's because they were having a sale. They were selling a bunch of older rpg books at 95% off. I walked out with 8 books, mostly White Wolf. One of the more interesting things I found is a game called Zero. It's about a future society where everyone is connected to this hive mind and you play one of the few individuals who has broken free.

Which Piercing are you?

I haven't read the Tarot in a while, so I just did a reading with a deck Carla and I found in New Orleans. I usually use the Rider-Waite, but this deck has some great art. I have several decks, but everytime I have tried to use a different deck in the past, the reading has come out as indecipherable jibberish. The reading that I just did wasn't the clearest reading I have ever had, but it was pretty accurate. It took the question in my mind and laid out the situation pretty well in the cards. I could see the people involved represented as certain cards and the card that came out in the first position is exactly the card I was thinking about pulling out as a significator. The reading seemed very positive. The final card for the spread was The Magician, which is always nice to see as an outcome.

Where have I been?
I haven't blogged in a few days. I've started to, but not known what to write. Why not? Maybe, because I've had nothing to complain about. It's easier to write about something you are angry about. Rants come easy, but I've even been happy at work the last couple of days.

I guess I could complain about the horrible sinus headache I had Thursday. It was so bad, I had to leave work early. I could complain but I won't. I stayed home from Champions, giving myself another week to plan the first Checkmate adventure, and when my headache went away in the evening I spent some quality time with the many-layered onion girl.

Carla and I still have some meat to finish in the fridge, but other than two dinners we cooked out of that meat in the fridge, I have completely avoided meat. I feel great and I am eating less. I am mainly doing this for spiritual reasons, but I am pleasantly remembering the health benefits.

Why is it so hard to admit that I am doing it for spiritual reasons? Am I afraid that people are going to think I am going to start shoving my beliefs down their throats? (I won't. Don't worry.) Maybe it's because of growing up surrounded by the christian faith. When you have spent your life surrounded my a majority religion that actively tries to convert people by telling them if they don't conform they will suffer eternal torment, you develop defense mechanisms. When I gave up meat before, I didn't admit to people that it was partially for spiritual reasons. Rather than be told I was "a dirty heathen that would burn in a lake of fire," I told people a selfish reason they would understand. I told everyone who asked that it was for health reasons and I think I fooled myself in to believing it. (OK- most Christians would never say something as obviously offensive as the lake of fire bit, but that is what most of them believe, right? By not accepting Christ as my savior and not agreeing with their sense of morality, I get a ticket for the Hellrails with the rest of the heathens.) Hmmm.... and I said I had nothing to write. I better stop now, before I have to add a warning.

Wednesday, May 08, 2002

Work was much better today. I got in to "the zone" and got a lot done. In other words, it only sucked a little.

Neil is getting burned out on GMing Champions so he wants to take a break for a few months. We have been talking about what to game because we still want to get together Thursdays. So, I emailed a couple of ideas to the group (OK- the group is currently me, Neil and Eric) and we decided that I would start a game tomorrow. Not much notice. Luckilly, I will be running a game that I have run before, based off of a DC Comic Book. It's a super-spy/espionage game about a secret organization called "Checkmate." The players will be playing Knights, the James Bonds of the organization.

Tuesday, May 07, 2002

During my lunch I went to blog. I was going to tell you how much worked sucked. I stopped myself. I realized that when I go online during lunch, its usually to quit thinking about work. So, I blogged about gaming instead. You lucked out.

It was only a temporary reprieve. I usually enjoy my job. Really, I do. Right now, work sucks. It does for most people. I know that. However, my work has just reached a new level of suckiness. Lately we have been so short-staffed in my department that we have been hopelessly behind on all of our deadlines. I usually am very good at not stressing out about crap like. After all, it's just work. When I leave for the day, the work doesn't come home with me.

Well, I found out this morning that we will be getting no more employees. They recently fired someone in my department (I mentioned her here before. She was the one that never worked.) and they won't even replace her. The company had decided that until the industry (the mortgage industry) improves, we don't need more people. Never mind the fact that my department's work load isn't affected as much by the level of the industry. Who cares if they are now leaving us with less employees for the department then a year and a half ago when the industry was even slower than it is right now?

Since I started in my department a year and a half ago, I have seen them add more and more responsibilities to our department. They always said that they would eventually add new positions. We have never been able to complete all of the jobs they give us before without working overtime. Today they tell us that the someday that we hoped would come....the day when we would have enough employees to get the jobs done right and on time was a lie. Instead, we are now expected to get everything done with one less person.

Amber: Methuselah's Children
We played Saturday and the campaign is finally wrapping up. I may miss playing Alex, but I'm glad to finally see the end of the game. There comes a point when a story needs an ending. This one should have ended ages ago.

Alexander is a great anti-hero. He has been fighting to do the right thing but he is bitter, distrustful and hateful. The only person he feels at all close to is Simone and in true anti-hero fashion, he has pissed her off at him too. He is currently stuck with Sebastian's pyche in his head. The two are talking. (They don't have much choice. It's either talk or fight for control of the body.) This is forcing Alex to see how alike they really are.

Monday, May 06, 2002

I just want to say that my wife is the most wonderful, supporting person. I have decided that I have to quit eating meat and she is joining me in this to make it easier. I did not ask her to do this and would not. For me, it's no big deal to give up meat. I was a vegetarian before Carla and I met and I like vegetables much more than meat. For Carla, it is a much bigger deal. She has never even liked veggies. She may have other reasons to be a veggie (such as health) but I know that the main reason is for me and I love her even more for this. That she would make this big of a change for me means a lot.

I put a warning for a reason. I am not pointing fingers or judging anyone, so please do not take it that way. I tend to sound judgemental when I start ranting, but I guess that's just my style. I say what I feel like it is the truth because for me it is. That doesn't mean that I think you are wrong if you have a different opinion. It just means that it is true for me.

My post yesterday was not a response to anyone else's post. It is my opinion, not a reaction to anything anybody else said. I have been saying this same crap for years and poor Carla has had to sit through my "human beings have to quit breeding" rant way too many times. Luckilly for me, Carla doesn't want kids, so she doesn't take much offense from my comments.

There is a couple that Carla and I have been friends with for some time. They have a little girl and they constantly tell us how great it is to be parents and how we should know that joy. There is no greater feeling, blah, blah, blah. One of the times my friend told me that maybe we were to selfish for kids. (If I was reacting to anyone yesterday it was him.) Well this set me off in to my age old rant with him about people who reproduce being selfish. If they weren't selfish, wouldn't they adopt instead? That's the way I see it and he pushed the buttons to make me tell him. Of course, we're still friends. He has been friends with me for years and he knows how I am when I speak my beliefs. They still tell us about how great it is to be a parent and I still rant about human overpopulation.

I will probably go off on more topics in the future. Originally, when I started this blog I meant to write about topics which are important to me, like the human population problem. This seemed like a great way for me to write in a journal about things like that. I also wasn't originally going to let my friends know I had a blog, so I could speak freely. Since my blog quickly became public knowledge I have since censored myself. Well, with the kids/uterus topic that travelled through the blogs last week, I felt that it was time for me to cut loose. After all, you didn't want the watered down version, did you?

Of course, now the Buddha in me is reminding me that my opinions are just another part of my ego and maybe I should just relax a little.

Sunday, May 05, 2002

Warning: I'm not pulling punches. These are my thoughts and they may offend you. You've been warned.

OK. I'm ready to throw in my 2ยข. I don't have anything to add about periods or the uterus, but I will speak about having children.

I was coming home from Home Depot today. The store is maybe three miles away and on that drive I saw eight dead animals at the side of the road. I counted. I'm pretty sure one was a possum. Another looked like a squirrel. I couldn't tell you what the other six were. Some were just flattened fur on the road.

Every time I see roadkill, it pisses me off. I see an animal that was either hungry or looking for a mate. Not having what it needed in the little bit of woods left for it, it has to cross the street, hopefully to find a forest on the other side. This poor animal, not knowing that the forest on the other side has been turned in to a new housing community, faces it fears and steps out on to the pavement. The car comes along at 60 mph and BAM! If it's lucky it dies instantly. Many of them don't. They get half of their body flattened and struggle to get themselves off of the deathtrap people have made. They either end up slowly dying at the side of the road (I saw one of these last week on the way in to work) or mercifully being hit by another car.

Of course if human beings hadn't spread like cockroaches over this planet, the critter may not have had to cross that street. It may have been able to go the other direction and find vast woodlands. That isn't the case around here. We keep tearing forest down to make more subdivisions and everywhere you turn: roadkill.

This is why I don't want to breed. I love kids. They are great and I might have even been willing to make room in my life for one. However, I'm not selfish enough to think that the world needs me to breed. All you have to do is watch daytime talk shows and you'll see that there are plenty of people out there who don't understand birth control. The human race is in no danger of dying out. We are like a virus. It will be some time before we either learn to keep our own population under control or mother earth develops an antibody that we haven't built up an immunity to yet.

Some people don't feel complete unless they have children. Rather than try and find a new meaning in their lives, they have children as custom demands. Kids are demanding and rewarding. The reward usually outweighs the work. That's why many people have more than one. They are selfish. They like having that sense of purpose. That's selfish if you ask me. Rather than thinking about the world as a whole, the environment or even all of the children that already exist in this world that could use their help, they have their own little bundle of joy. What happiness it brings them! Then they try and pressure their non-breeding friends in to doing the same, not as some self sacrifice that any good selfless person would do but by telling them how wonderful it is to be a parent. "You don't know this kind of joy until you hold your baby in your arms and say 'I made this.'"

I'd love to have children, but I won't. There's already too many humans in the world. Don't worry about me. I'll find something to do with my time.

I had a training seminar to go to on Mortgage Industry. This means I wasn't in the office. It was a nice break. After work I went to Neil's for Champions, but since I wasn't in the office I didn't get his email saying it was cancelled. We ended up hanging out and playing Grand Theft Auto 3.

Took day off work. Went to see Spidey matinee with MK. The movie was very cool. The fight scenes and special effects were amazing. The dialogue was bad. At times, it seemed like they took the dialogue word for word from the 1960's comics written by Stan Lee, one of the greatest hacks in comics. Still, it was a lot of fun and I'm looking forward to seeing it again. I went to the Secretary of State after the movie. I waited for almost two hours to get a replacement license and tags. I think that may be the longest I have ever had to wait at the SoS.

I'll be back later. I have to go mow the lawn. It's lookin' dumpy.

Thursday, May 02, 2002

Find your Role-Playing

How does this fit with my Kingdomality result?