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Puerto Rico!

I’m traveling again. Puerto Rico is really beautiful. Only been here a day so far, but I’m staying through the weekend.

Old San Juan reminds me a lot of New Orleans. Funnily enough, the server we had last night made sure to tell us that drinking in the streets was a no-no. The only place I’ve ever been where that was a thing was New Orleans.


I’m here on a work trip, so I don’t have tons of time to explore, which is a bummer, but I am near the beach and the view from my room’s balcony is wonderful.


It’s the rainy month, despite what it looks like, so there are backup indoor activities (including board games) during some of the scheduled downtime. I brought my copy of Hanabi, so hopefully that will get some play before the weekend is out.

Next weekend, Camp Nerdly!

May 8, 2014   Comments Off on Puerto Rico!

Happy Valentine’s Day – have a game!


 In this game, you DREAM OF EPIC ADVENTURES in the space of about SIX MINUTES.
The game probably takes about 30-45 minutes to play.
You’ll need enough people to form a band. We’re going to play the story of your music video. 4-6 recommended…unless you decide to play Ska or Orchestral EPIC ADVENTURE VIDEO, then you need a LOT more (do this at your own risk, though — it’ll probably be weird)


Select an epic metal song that’s about six minutes long, ideally, with a play-time clock available. Listen to the song once through. Some recommended bands are listed below.
Each person takes a piece of paper and one or more writing/drawing implements. You’ll choose which roles you play in the band. These are important because different band members play different roles in the video. If you deviate from this, make sure everyone is on the same page and in agreement.
Depending on how many players you have, you’ll each be responsible for a section of song. Divide it up evenly, for example: a 6 minute song divided by 4 players = 1:30 each. Vocalist takes first pick as to which section they want, then lead guitar, etc.
On your paper, draw a large octothorpe that divides the bottom “square” of the page into 9 sections. This is your storyboard that you’ll fill in with scenes.
1 -> 2 -> 3
4 -> 5 -> 6
7 -> 8 -> 9
Listen to the song again. Each player should take particular note of their chosen section.
Start filling in scenes that you want to occur in the video. You can use as many or as few as you want, just keep in mind your time available. 9 scenes and 60 seconds doesn’t leave much room for more than a quick bit each. Your character should feature in your section of the video. Include others as needed, but this is YOUR part of the story.
Listen to the song again as needed.
When everyone is satisfied with their storyboarded scenes, lay out the pages so that the storyboards are all in order.
Listen to the song one last time, and this time look over the storyboard scenes and DREAM OF EPIC ADVENTURE.
If your adventure was truly epic, give your bandmates a high five!
Roles include:
  • Vocalist — Protagonist
  • Lead Guitar — Love interest
  • Rhythm Guitar — Wingman (to the love interest)
  • Bassist — Axe Wielding Sidekick (to the protagonist)
  • Drummer — Antagonist
  • Keyboardist — Antagonist
  • Flutist — Ancient Wizard (a neutral observer)
 Or make up your own!
Some bands from which you might choose songs.
  • Rhapsody
  • Stratovarius
  • Power Quest
  • Galenyrus
  • Nightwish
  • Ancient Bards
  • Sonata Arctica
  • Blind Guardian

This will become a free PDF soon. Enjoy!

February 14, 2014   Comments Off on Happy Valentine’s Day – have a game!

What changes now?

Tonight a few relatively small events combined to form a Voltron of lonliness and sad.

The first was the twitter hashtag #fatmicroaggressions which I note affect me, though the descriptions of social interactions are distinctly different. However the structural items are exceedingly familiar. Nothing has ever fit me particularly well.

The second was an article on Autism describing a new way of thinking dubbed the “Intense World” theory. And I found myself intensely identifying with their description of what they thought was occurring and then being described as autism.

The third was an outing to a gathering of about a dozen people for a weekly bar outing – tonight is Lisa's birthday pubnight. Unfortunately, the place immediately set off all of my “can't handle being here” buttons. The music was loud, the group of people large, and the little cocktail tables too small. I told Lisa that I was sorry but I could not stay.

As I left, I was struck by this wave of sadness and intense feeling of loneliness. My normal Night's Black Agents game was to be tonight, but scheduling issues combined to cancel the game. So now I'm sitting along in a coffee shop trying to collect my thoughts and feelings on what just happened!? And more relevantly, does it actually mean anything or am I just hardcore empathizing with the items I read today and quietly self-diagnosing?

I am given to be skeptical of drawing meaning from tonight's events. They're not that unusual in my life. I get uncomfortable in loud places with too many people I don't know, and if there's no way to focus that anxiety, I handle it by getting out. And if I can't get out, I get intoxicated as fast as possible. It's not a solution I particularly like, but it's one that relieves the anxiety. I'm drinking a strong beer now. It doesn't relieve the loneliness, but it dulls the anxiety and sadness. I've still got the empty pit-in-stomach feeling that something is wrong, and I still don't know what (if anything) to do about it.


December 11, 2013   Comments Off on What changes now?