Monthly Archives: November 2005

An ode.

‘Twas the night before Xbox, when all through the city–
Those without preorders were feeling real shitty.
The previews had been read, with the utmost of care,
predicting many good things, but the box would be rare.

The fanboys had lined up, despite all the cold,
to count down to the second 360s were sold.
And I in my jacket and cellphone and bag
was going to attempt a mid morning snag!

At the first shop, what a scene I did see–
People lined up, outside BestBuy, Tenley.
Away to the metro, I sprung like a flash
Hopped on the red line, to yellow I dashed.

At Pentagon City, I quickly departed
But as I entered EB, I found I was thwarted.
My buddy, the manager, stood quite dejected.
“We only received half of what we expected!”

I saw there, a woman afraid to walk out,
A 360 she had, but with it, some doubt
About human nature, she had some great fears
Of her 360 looted, stolen by peers.

I saw a few friends, simply waiting in line
They’d have 360s, but where was mine?
As my phone started ringing, insistent in tone
I swore I’d acquire a box of my own.

On my cellphone was Dan, and after casing CostCo
Found that they were sold out, and we had to go.
I met up with Dan outside of the mall,
racked my brain back and forth for some kind of cure-all

More rapid than eagles, to the stores we then flew
And found out from cashiers what we already knew.

To Sears, to BestBuy,
to WalMarts most rural!
To Target, to EB,
and electronics stores, plural!
To the front of the line,
to the back of the store,
“You can’t be sold out,
please say you have more!”

Alas we were thwarted, as the car was quite empty
Thanksgiving would be without the 360.
Then we had lunch, and I went in to work.
As dwelling too much would have made me berserk.

I sprang to the web, to FireFox gave two clicks,
Navigated to eBay, and counted the ticks
My coworkers heard me exclaim as the page came in sight,
“Two thousand five hundred fifty dollars for a 360?!
You have got to be fucking kidding me.”

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It’s not really my thing, I really don’t cook. I think I heat things up, mostly. When pressured, I can throw things into a slow cooker or follow a recipe. For the most part, I don’t cook.

I do love food. Which is why I like watching the food network at people’s houses or reading SlashFood.

That said, this recipe for a Hawaiian inspired cranberry relish sounds tasty. I think the lychees would be good in there.

A cunning plan

You may or may not have heard of this white box coming from Microsoft. You may have heard of its capabilities to render entire worlds, to create online communities, play all of your (completely legal) media from your PC on your television, and make a damn tasty omelette.

Me being me, I want one. I want one now. First revision hardware be damned, I want one. I have four other consoles connected to the television, games still in shrink wrap, games I can’t even play because they are Japanese imports, and I want one.

But I also wanted a condo and I got one. Now look at me.

I couldn’t bring myself to buy another console. After all, this is the “Year of Restraint.”

On the other hand, what if I earned it?

So two weeks ago, I made a deal with myself. I said, “Self, have I got a deal for you!”

I don’t drink enough water. I find it endearing that this particular behavior is a bad habit because you don’t do it.

I would pay myself one dollar each half-liter bottle I drank at work. Nothing extreme. By all accounts and by what “they” say, I’m supposed to drink about three or four of these a day. By putting the $800 carrot down the line, I figured that I would be able to drink that much water in about six months.

In two weeks, I made $7.

I obviously do not drink enough water.

UNO, Bitch!

I’m not entirely sure how I feel about a board game based on an MMO*. On the one hand, it’s social interaction with other human beings. On the other, it’s a board game based on an MMO. I’m all for board and card games. When I used to live in a house, UNO ruled the roost, with Street Puzzle Fighter II Turbo coming in a close second.

I enjoy analog games (I’m referring to board and card games, in this case) quite a bit. There’s nothing wrong with breaking out a box and getting some friends together and playing. Although the “getting some friends together” seems to be the hardest part. That’s why it was so much fun in the house. You already had the two to eight players necessary for a round of whatever you wanted to play.

Then there was the rampant cheating, which I enjoyed quite a bit. The house rule for UNO was, “If you get caught cheating, eight card penalty.” The operative word in that rule being, “caught.” I remember one time we finished playing UNO and we ended up with more cards than when we started. I couldn’t fit the cards back in the box, I think we had three decks instead of two.

The game isn’t important at that point, it’s the socialization. Which is why a version of World of WarCraft bothers me so much. The computer takes care of so many rules behind the scenes that you can socialize through chat without having to do anything other than have fun. When you’re rolling dice and following the rules outlined in a game manual that is forty pages long, I’m not sure you’ll have enough time to socialize when you’re not playing the undocumented super secret elite class, “Rules Lawyer.”

I’ve skimmed through the manual and it looks very tedious. I’m sure that there is a market for people that will buy this game, people who have level 60 characters, have all epic equipment, and are rabid fans of Blizzard. For me, that eighty dollars (Yes, eight-zero.) is better spent on my monthly fees.

Some may argue that pen and paper roleplaying games have rules, books and books of them. I argue that these games have Game or Dungeon Masters. Their role is to streamline games. The good ones bend rules when necessary, make judgment calls, and arbitrate conflicts between players. I’d like to take this time to point out an example from a friend of mine, I hope she doesn’t mind me quoting part of her story here.

Two characters (and naturally, the players) were having an argument over a ring which may or may not have been magical. Their bickering was holding up the game, and making people uncomfortable. It escalated to the point where one character actually swallowed the ring to keep it from the other character. In order to keep the game moving, she made a decision:

“You pass the ring in 1d4** days.”

I don’t see that in the WoW rulebook.

* Massively Multiplayer Online (Game)
** One die four. A pen and paper role playing game term that means, “Roll one four sided die.” 2d10, 4d8, 6d6, 1d20, etc.


Went to bed at nine-thirty last night.

Woke up around sixish. Felt really good.