Previously, in Trip's Life...

31 October 2003 - Friday

Wow, rain! That was a pretty short transition from dry season to rainy season.

* * *

Argh. I have a sudden (well, kind of sudden) hard little ridge thing on the inside of my gum, which apparently is in just the right place to mangle the base of my tongue whenever I use it for anything. Like, oh, to EAT. Argh. I think it's a wisdom tooth trying to come in sideways, which means it needs real dental care. Argh argh ARGH.

* * *

Not a very Halloweeny office today. Greg tried to dress as a Yahoo! employee, but doesn't have a Yahoo! badge, so it's not as obvious as it might be. Angie is a Devil in a Blue Dress, which I think lacks the necessary falling-out-of quality, but that's just me. And, well, that's about it.

* * *

Marith has recommended to me a dentist who is nearby, is not horrible, and is on my plan. Now I just have to get up the gumption to make an appointment.

* * *

Words: 0

Reason for not starting: mouth hurts :(

* * *

Marith came over and coached me through some more FF8. There is sort of some plot now, but the very first real fight squished me like a whole hive of crunchy little bugs. Sniff!

I will have to see if I can do even worse without Marith's advice, I guess. :)

backseat playstationing by marith (Mon Nov 3 16:33:11 2003)

*looks very sheepish* But you _almost_ survived!

And you should definitely get a chance to play without a little sister peering over your shoulder squeaking, "no, the left button!" :)

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30 October 2003 - Thursday

Wah! Hal Clement has passed away!

Not that this was surprising (he was 81), but it's still sad. Many people write SF based on next week's journals, but no one else wrote the same sort of "See just how WEIRD basic chemistry, physics, and thermodynamics is?" stuff. You just don't see much science you can get inside and walk around in, anymore.

* * *

On an almost completely unrelated topic, commercial optical processors! March, progress! March!

* * *

No work for me today, because I have a doctor's appointment in Sunnyvale. Stupid STUPID public transit creatures. Or maybe stupid AV management critters, since I never had any problem getting to work at random times when I worked in downtown PA. On the other hand, the rent in downtown PA could probably run entire small European countries, so I guess it beats having been laid off years ago.

* * *

Words: 106

Reason for stopping: still not getting anywhere

I guess I'll set 100 words as my minimum for not sucking, since I can make that even at my most sloggiest.

* * *

Yay! More RahXephon! All doom, all the time!

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29 October 2003 - Wednesday

I finished Paladin of Souls while waiting for my bagels this morning. It was extraordinarily excellent, because it is recent Bujold. Now I want to reread The Curse of Chalion.

* * *

I officially dropped out of Brad's campaign. I feel like a total rat. A slimy endoskeletal rat. :( :( :(

* * *

As I walked to the bus stop after work, the sun was low in the sky, the wind was blowing, and IT WASN'T HOT! Maybe it really is almost November after all!

* * *

Still a rat. But a rat with RahXephon disc 5.

* * *

Words: 189

Reason for stopping: not getting anywhere.

* * *

Now I understand why snowflakes are symmetric!

Dropping Out by Dave (Thu Oct 30 10:14:25 2003)

Oh, that was you. That's slightly relieving, as I already knew you were thinking of dropping out, and was worried that someone else had done so. I know we'll miss you, but you should do what's best for you.

Re: Dropping Out by Trip (Thu Oct 30 10:33:27 2003)

If it only it were easier to determine what really is best....

Re: Dropping Out by Dave (Thu Oct 30 12:40:49 2003)

And if only it didn't keep changing all the time. Still, best aside, pretty good isn't too bad.

Re: Dropping Out by Flit (Thu Nov 13 14:14:42 2003)

Aww, we'll miss you, but you're not a rat for prioritizing and doing what's right! If you ever want back in, drop Brad a line, but it's much more important that you take care of yourself. Gaming's a big time committment and you have lots of other great things on your plate. And I know Brad would say the same thing. (You did have a righteously cool character, btw, but if you ever want to play her in future, you can!)

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28 October 2003 - Tuesday

Okay, who lit the map on fire?

* * *

Yay Steel Angel Kurumi 2! Even sillier than before! The opening song is not as good, though. Hmph.

* * *

Words: 0

Reason for not starting: Millbrae, then Whisman Station anime. But I did remember the good proper noun I made up before: Anuries. And a bonus one: Streese.

Fires in San Diego by kmiyaki (Tue Oct 28 18:38:41 2003)

Smoke, ashes, and destruction everywhere. Day is as night. The Sun is blood red. Burning eyes, sore throats. And lots of homeless people, including several that I work with.

-Ken

Re: Fires in San Diego by Trip (Wed Oct 29 08:58:38 2003)

Wow. I remember being in Pasadena during the riots back in whatever historical year that was, but this sounds a lot worse.

I hope you're doing okay!

Re: Fires in San Diego by gregbo (Wed Oct 29 09:43:39 2003)

I was living in LA during the year of the riots. It was distressing looking out from the roof of an office I worked at and seeing the fires in the distance. Even more distressing was going to the place in the Crenshaw District where I got my hair cut and seeing the destruction.

Riots by Tamago (Wed Oct 29 10:39:58 2003)

I was at USC in just-off-campus housing during the riots. About half of the local businesses were torched, and the grocery store across the street was surrounded by dead-eyed young soldiers with rifles.

"Dude! I don't have to worry about that late video tape! The store burned down!"

But you can negotiate with looters. You can't negotiate with a firestorm.

Re: Riots by Trip (Wed Oct 29 13:40:41 2003)

Huh. That's not the adjective I would have expected there at all. I'd expect young soldiers suddenly dumped into a Real Situation to be scared, not empty. (Okay, empty-headed, because they're early-20s males, but.)

Riots by Tamago (Thu Oct 30 09:57:43 2003)

They weren't silly young men, they were soldiers with orders to shoot at the least sign of trouble. They didn't want to see any of us as human. We were targets. Some were innocent, some were guilty, but all were suspicious. They weren't scared. They were doing what they were trained to do, what they were ordered to do and what the Side of Good wanted them to do. I think that was the scariest thing of all: I was in more danger from the "good guys" than the looters.

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27 October 2003 - Monday

We finally finished FLCL. It was not all explained in the end. Greg, who came in halfway through the series, was not any more confused than Bruce and Ray, who have seen all of it.

I wasn't using that SAN anyway.

* * *

Words: 769

Reason for Stopping: need to bask in the admiration of my beta reader

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26 October 2003 - Sunday

I scuttled incompetently to Bueno Bueno and arrived only five minutes late, but no one else was there! When they continued to not be there, I called the Gollubim, who kindly informed me that some stupid-ass act of Congress had forced everyone to reset their clocks so they would be an hour late. Hmph!

Eventually everyone did show up and we ate and went to the Gollubim's and did remarkably little damage to a dirigible (unless you think damage done by Nora's nemesis should be blamed on her). We were unfocused and terribly slow, but that's hardly the GM's fault. I can't even imagine Dave with a whip and a chair anyway.

* * *

Words: 0

Reason for not starting: social weekend, no brain left

* * *

Watched the first disc of Spirit of Wonder, which was not as... something as the manga. Hard to go wrong with ether zeppelins, though!

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25 October 2003 - Saturday

We already had Ayseday (actual) but today was Ayseday (observed). After being socialled all last night, I slept in and in but eventually got up and gave Marith a wake-up call. She was feeling oogy, though, so I had to call Ayse to get a ride to dim sum.

Dim sum! Yay dim sum! Yay Hong Kong Flower Lounge!

We ate way too much dim sum, and still had leftovers, but it made Ayse happy. It made the rest of us (Ken, Dave, Earl, Cat) pretty happy too.

Back at my parasitelair, we menfolk played Strange Synergies, a peculiar superhero board game with Phil Foglio art, and it was indeed strange. Ayse and Cat ABCed my books, or rather MNOPQRSTUVWXYZed them. Then we showed Ayse Dragon Half, which amused her.

Having shed people for dinner along the way, the reduced group (Ayse, Ken, and me) went to the AyseKen lair to watch Sleeper. I have now been exposed to the genius of Woody Allen, to which I say, "Enh", and also "Wow, the past was a really suckful place". (Yes, I know Sleeper takes place in the future.)

Now I am at home, desocialling. I don't know if I will have energy to write tonight. Well, maybe I can do fifty words. Fifty is more than zero, right?

* * *

Words: 100.

Reason for stopping: laziness.

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24 October 2003 - Friday

Tired of your nematodes getting old? We can fix that now!

* * *

I sat down and tried to write, but got sidetracked into helping Marith beat apache into submission. Whack! Whack! Then suddenly, Dave appeared! He was hyper and talkative and burbled about dirigibles and Girl Genius for some time. When he went away and I looked back at my computer, I saw that Marith had departed for home, threatening to visit me!

Marith helped me set up my chibi-PlayStation (no, really, it's much much smaller than the original manufacturing run! it's cute!) and play some Final Fantasy VIII, but it didn't really grab me. Possibly this is because I made the mistake of reading the help files.

And so...

Words: 94.

Reason for stopping: midnight.

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23 October 2003 - Thursday

HAPPY HAPPY AYSEDAY!!!

* * *

I talked to everyone technical at the Yahoo! recruiting fair thing, of whom about two had any possible openings for sysadmins. Still, it's only four days since the shape of my doom became manifest, so no point in panicking now.

Oh, if anyone wants a copy of my resume, here it is.

* * *

I went over to Ayse's to give her her comics and wish her happy birthday, but I got kept! And forced to eat birthday stirfry with yams and eggplant and tofu and peppers! The horror! The horror!

* * *

Words: 574

Reason for stopping: Brain empty. Plus, bedtime.

writing by kit (Fri Oct 24 09:56:52 2003)

YAY TRIPWRITING!

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22 October 2003 - Wednesday

Wow, slow comics week.

* * *

Gwack! Marith has suddenly given me a PlayStation! Gwack! I am very surprised!

Marith is clearly the best sister ever, but also she is insidious and evil, 'cause playing Final Fantasy games is not at all like writing!

Slow comics by Dave (Sun Oct 26 19:42:38 2003)

Me, too. I got nada this week.

Re: Slow comics by Trip (Mon Oct 27 08:30:48 2003)

But I have all your FSS to read, so I don't feel deprived. :)

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21 October 2003 - Tuesday

Blargh. I don't know what to do. I should spend less of my time being social (read, gaming) so that I can spend more of it writing. (Okay, spending less time playing zangband would also help, it's true.) But I don't want to give up any of my gaming!

Despite last night going okay, I'm still not that pleased with Tokyo Tower. If I drop it, though, I won't be running much of anything, which is kind of sad. And if I drop TT and run something else, then I won't be freeing up any time, and I will also be doomed because Ayse and Ken called dibs on the next thing I run, and at least 2/3 of the Tokyo Tower players wouldn't join a different game if Ayse is in it, which means I would effectively be junking their game to run for Ayse, which is like taking sides, which is huge enormous doom all around.

I can drop out of Brad's D&D3.5e game with relatively little damage, although that's only avoiding a future commitment of time, not getting rid of any of the ones I have now.

Blargh. Obviously I am just not dedicated enough to writing.

* * *

Neil has failed us! No Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne for us! But extra Gasaraki and Vandread, so we have plenty of giant robot action (psychic powers optional).

gaming by Ken (Wed Oct 22 11:15:20 2003)

We did not mean to be forming a line or anything; you can certainly run games for others without hurting our feelings. We were just making sure we expressed our interest in playing in a Tripgame at some point in the hopefully non-hypothetical future. Honestly, right now our schedules are fairly full as it is.

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20 October 2003 - Monday

Hmph, someone stole our conference center, so no anime for us. Thai food is yummy, but not like anime.

* * *

Of course the notification of the shape of our doom is delayed. We expected nothing else.

* * *

Now I know the shape of my doom, which is that my job lasts through January 31. If I avoid quitting or being fired until the first week of January, I get a retention bonus, and if I last until the 31st, I get severence. Unless Yahoo! exercises some of the "unless we change our minds" clauses, of course.

I am free to seek employment within Yahoo!, of course, which would mean no severance, but a job. Wheee.

Time to polish the old resume, I guess.

* * *

I think Tokyo Tower went well, although it's hard to tell because Christy is always sick on Monday nights, or something. It was mostly one big fight scene, but everyone got to look good, and they defeated more than fifty dark elves with only minimal help from NPCs. You'd think they were heroes, or something.

AV doom by Bryant (Tue Oct 21 05:45:29 2003)

Sigh. Sympathies. :(

Re: AV doom by Lynx (Wed Oct 22 10:13:43 2003)

I've gone that way before. Stuck it out and got a nice retention bonus, which helped a lot because it was some nine months before I had a job again.

What you need to do now is to start networking, make sure you know where your colleagues are going so you can find out if you can get hired at the companies where they wind up. Retention and severance are all very well, but a steady job will be a lot less worrying.

Yahoo! might not be so bad either. I visited them once, they had a free coffee shop in their cafeteria. Yum.

Re: AV doom by Dave (Wed Oct 22 12:07:09 2003)

However, I'd expect that sort of thing to have gone the way of most such luxuries, post-bubble.

Re: AV doom by Trip (Wed Oct 22 12:48:00 2003)

Lynx: Well, our part of Yahoo! (the one that's being broken into small pieces and digested) is actively trying to pimp us to other parts of Yahoo!, so it's not as doomed as all that. Also means my colleagues aren't making plans for other jobs as yet.

But yah.

Dave: Dunno. Yahoo! actually has revenue and stuff, and apparently they still have other bubbly amenities like on-site masseurs.

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19 October 2003 - Sunday

Since gaming isn't until 18:00 today, I can be even more astounding slothful.

Not infinitely slothful, however, since I still have to go shopping before gaming. Ah well.

* * *

Yay! New shoes! No more squeaking!

Forgot the string cheese, though. Fooey.

* * *

Earthdawn continues! This time, we experimented with a confusing fork in the road, and then beat the snot out of an ancient, Horror-tainted elven illusionist. And her zombies. Sadly, she got away, but she'll think twice about messing with us again! (That is to say, next time she'll have a better plan.)

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18 October 2003 - Saturday

Just because I'm awake, why should I get out of bed?

Oh, yah, because I have to be at Dave's in five minutes for Amber High School. Oops.

And yet, I was not latest. Not even close.

* * *

We plotted! We experimented! We admired the shape of our future doom! We brought a physical object back from Tir!

Next session, we put an end to the Vampire Menace through hydrological warfare!

* * *

Chrisber sang us the Four Paws song! Kawaii!

If only anyone knew what tune it's to.

* * *

Ken came over before he could be instructed to bring condiments, so we relocated back to where the condiments were and ate Reubens and watched some Slayers.

I cooked a Reuben of my very own! I'm so cool!

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17 October 2003 - Friday

Angie brought me the most absurd purple-and-orange orangutan from yesterday's D&B expedition. It looks a lot like the Beanie Baby primate I got for writing docs, only MUCH MUCH BRIGHTER. Hee hee!

* * *

Hah! Take that, laundry creature!

* * *

That was not the Use Magic Item roll I needed to fail.

Use Magic Item roll? by Del (from Philly) (Wed Oct 22 05:20:20 2003)

Which magic item were you trying to use, and how did it fail?

Re: Use Magic Item roll? by Trip (Wed Oct 22 08:32:35 2003)

Staff of teleportation, and it just didn't work, thus not removing me from the middle of the horde of summoned creatures before they finished eating me.

Sniff.

So, um, who are you, and what twisted satisfaction do you derive from reading me webpage? (Yah, it could be a non-twisted satisfaction, but really, what are the odds?)

surfing the web by Del the ex-netadmin (Thu Oct 23 17:00:28 2003)

I ran across your web site when I was searching for something, I think it was anime-related, and I like your writing style. So, I bookmarked your site and have been lurking for several months now. I live on the east coast and always thought I had more of a west coast mindset. I used to use Altavista (before Google), and I still use BabelFish when I need to translate something.

Stop me if I'm boring you.

Del

Re: surfing the web by Trip (Thu Oct 23 20:59:57 2003)

Wacky, yet cool! Welcome, and feel free to comment any time.

Make a comment!

16 October 2003 - Thursday

Angie, Bruce, and Greg are going to Dave&Busters to have food and fun and very loud noise, but I'm not, because I don't feel entirely well. Probably serves me right for not taking proper care of myself, but that's neither here nor there. (Where is it, then?)

* * *

Did a little of that work thing I hear about sometimes. Take that, stupid perl script!

* * *

Blargh. Useless parasite. Not even doing laundry, never mind writing. Blargh.

* * *

Finished the first season of Ai Yori Aoshi. Awww. Mushy.

Aoi is a lot more secure than most anime girls.

* * *

No! Let go of my brain, vile zangband creature!

Splat.

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15 October 2003 - Wednesday

Still sleepy.

* * *

Apparently, Al is wrong: the age of manned spaceflight has not come to a close just yet.

* * *

Approximately thirty seconds before I left to catch the bus, Greg asked me to fix something. I said I would do it when I got home, but in the time it took me to explain that, Bruce did it. My lameness is exposed to the world. (Although I still think that scheduling a minimum of five minutes for any task substantial enough to get a trouble ticket is a good policy in general.)

* * *

Woot! I thought RahXephon disc 6 wasn't coming out for another week, but I went to Lee's and there it was! Along with many many other things that I was compelled to buy.

Lee's has gotten rid of half their store! Not the contents, just the space. It now looks a lot more like a traditional comics store, which is not really a good thing (especially when two people want to use one aisle at the same time). Oh well. I suppose they save plenty on rent this way, and being small is better than being out of business.

* * *

I made myself watch the whole second disc of SuperGALs tonight, so I can lend it to Angie tomorrow. Aren't I the most oppressed parasite ever?

* * *

Yay! Marith brought me the dead tree issue of As If!! Marith is the best sister!

oppression! by kit (Thu Oct 16 10:38:11 2003)

laugh You are. You're just awfully oppressed. Poor Trip!

Re: oppression! by Trip (Thu Oct 16 10:42:15 2003)

And I have no tuna!

re: oppression! by kit (Fri Oct 17 20:15:51 2003)

MEOW!

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14 October 2003 - Tuesday

Tuesday. Is there anything to be said for Tuesday? Mostly that it's not Monday, I guess.

* * *

Fooey. Angie is still sick, so she hasn't brought the Tanya Huff book(s) I wanted to read, so I can't read them on the train. I guess I'll have to read this other one I have handy, instead.

* * *

The past few Millbrae sessions have been philosophical discussion of leaving one's mark on the world, but finally we went back to How To Get Chicks. I think my tendency to think in visual metaphors hampers communication with endoskeletal creatures, and it doesn't even make me as cool at Graydon.

One thing Norm mentioned that one of his other patients had participated in, which amused me with its cleverness, was Speed Dating (probably tm). The idea is that equal numbers of men and women get lined up, each pair spends 5 minutes introducing themselves, then everyone shifts one and repeats. Each person notes down the MOTOSes they found interesting, the event organizers compare all the lists, and if they find interest in both directions for any pair, they provide contact information.

5 minutes obviously isn't enough to tell if you want to date someone, but it's enough to tell that you don't want to date someone because they're creepy or differently-depthed or too gothy or eat the flesh of animals or whatever, which is plenty for a first pass.

Efficiency!

* * *

Wow. Kitsune may be a babe, but she's really really obnoxious.

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13 October 2003 - Monday

Sleeeeepy parasite.

* * *

Quiet day, since Greg is in Sacramento and after enough weeks of Engineering not making gratuitous Marketing-driven changes to the site, it's actually kind of stable.

* * *

Observe how zangband is not like writing. I am thinking about writing, though, and that's like writing in every way except the actual production of words!

No, I'm not buying it either. Time for grocery shopping.

* * *

Not overwhelmingly late to sleep. Quite.

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12 October 2003 - Sunday

I really meant to go shopping before Home Front, but it never quite happened. Blargh.

And then I was late because I made the mistake of trying to print out an updated character sheet. Stupid STUPID printer creature.

Moving parts suck.

* * *

Christy's first GMing experience went pretty well! Certainly better than my first N attempts!

* * *

Stayed up too late again, this time reading Scott Westerfeld's The Risen Empire. Sadly, like The Golden Age, it is only half (or maybe a third) of a story. On the other hand, the next segment is already out, so I won't have to wait and wait and wait.

The Golden Age Sequel by Carl (Wed Oct 22 01:29:32 2003)

Phoenix Exultant is out in paperback now, but you probably already knew that.

Speaking of sequels, is there another NaNoWriMo next month? That would be a lot more like writing than playing Zangband, and then you could give the story to Marith, whom rumor suggests is the best sister ever, for Christmas, or else not. 50,000 words is only 300,000 keystrokes which is not much more than the number of keystrokes to play a month of Zangband, right? Just more e's and stuff, and in a different order.

Re: The Golden Age Sequel by Trip (Wed Oct 22 08:43:23 2003)

I have Phoenix Exultant, but that's STILL not the whole story.

I believe there is NaNoWriMo every year, or at least every year that contains a November. (Flashback to The Iron Dragon's Daughter: "The lords of the city had decreed a third December.")

300 000 keystrokes is 10 000 per day, which would be almost 3 hours at 1/sec, so yah, probably more than I would spend playing zangband. If only I could type directly in gzip...

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11 October 2003 - Saturday

Today was Marithday (Observed)! Ken made extraordinarily yummy chicken and squashes and beans and potatos and we feasted until we were round, and then we watched anime and more anime and told Marith how cool she is! It all seemed to go well.

* * *

Stayed up way way too late reading Monstrous Regiment (the new Terry Pratchett). It was good, in a bitter sort of way.

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10 October 2003 - Friday

HAPPY HAPPY MARITHDAY!!!

* * *

Today's fortune: "You will make a change for the better." Reassuring, but not actually informative. Not even if you add "... in bed."

* * *

Long, boring, lunch all-hands. Much was said, but little information was conveyed, as is standard for these events.

Apparently corporate types get to find out if they have jobs next Thursday, but technical people don't find out until a week from Monday. Feh. Double feh.

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9 October 2003 - Thursday

Still very sleepy. Still don't know if I have a job. Still unproductive.

It's really amazing how much of what the suits do seems deliberately calculated to reduce employee morale.

* * *

Attempted to do a clever thing. Foiled by stocking failure, but only temporarily.

* * *

Yay! Ratatouille! Butternut squash! Fresh bread with sheep's-milk roquefort! Yummy!

After being fed excellently by Ken and Ayse, I played Earthdawn with them and Dave. We rescued a cellar-full of beer from a spider of ice and iron, thus doing enough good for the world to make up for my character having to regrow a spleen or two. Plus, xp! Now I can throw things!

* * *

Argh! Stupid STUPID greater titan creatures!

The high score list confirms that was my best game ever, too. Fooey.

morale by kit (Fri Oct 10 10:00:16 2003)

I don't know why companies do that. Except the wheels of beur.. Ok, I've tried to spell that word eight times now and I'm goign to stop. Manangement sucks, that's why. o.o

Re: morale by Trip (Fri Oct 10 10:03:51 2003)

'Bureaucracy'. (Stupid STUPID French orthography.)

spelling by kit (Sat Oct 11 13:06:03 2003)

The really annoying thing is that most days I can spell bureaucracy. I just couldn't get it yesterday. :)

Spelling Forms by Carl (Wed Oct 22 01:37:55 2003)

You must fill out the right form in order to spell bureacracy. In triplicate. Which will then be typed in, printed out, faxed, and typed back in. Eventually.

Why no, I don't miss Lucent at all.

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8 October 2003 - Wednesday

I saw the election results on a paper someone on the bus was reading. If only all those STUPID people out there had voted the way I did, we wouldn't be in this mess.

Democracy, feh. Where are my killer robots from orbit?

* * *

Looks like Pokéthulhu's choice of d12s was driven by fundamental cosmic principles.

* * *

I started off the day with the Vast Sleepies (tm Kit) and then had three and a half hours of meetings, only about 15 minutes of which required me to do anything more than feign attentiveness. Ooooooog.

Plus, no new word about our fates under the new regime, so productivity continues to sulk about in the sub-basement.

* * *

My Sleepies are so very very Vast that I forgot today was new comics day! I did eventually remember, when Ayse called and startled me out of my semi-ambulatory coma, but going cost me the opportunity to eat Ken's ratatouille (sp?). Fooey.

* * *

Hah! Take that, stupid ogre! Take that, stupid madness spirit! Woof!

* * *

I stayed up too late by a whole hour less than last night!

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7 October 2003 - Tuesday

Well, Overture is lying back and thinking of England, but can Yahoo! get it up?

(Bitter about lack of communication? Why would you think that?)

* * *

I have VOTED!

* * *

To celebrate having been consumed, or to take our minds off the fact that They still haven't bothered to tell us whether we have jobs, or something, there was a chili cook-off. I voted for the chili that most closely resembled whatever platonic ideal of chili I was inculcated with in my youth, but somehow it actually won. I'm not sure what's up with that.

My welcome gift from Yahoo: a pen with a divot in the center of one side so that it can be balanced on the spike on the summit of the accompanying metal pyramid. I feel so loved.

* * *

Gasaraki is making a little more sense now. There is wibbling as to whether we should continue with it, or give the slot to Steel Angel Kurumi 2 or Banner of the Stars 2.

* * *

Want to guess whether I stopped playing zangband before bedtime came and went?

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6 October 2003 - Monday

Bleah. Monday.

* * *

ARRRGH! Stupid STUPID on-call creatures! Just as I was supposed to be packing up to go over for Tokyo Tower, I got called to fix something that no one had noticed until then, because God forbid engineers should actually be at work during business hours. By the time I got the fix running, it was after 19:00, and with 2/3 of my players being already semi-comatose, we decided to punt.

I am sad about fortnightly games.

* * *

GWACK! The Armageddon Tome! In a store for only 137 000gp! Usually it's over 1 000 000! GWACK!

Good thing I had all those spare artifacts lying around waiting to be pawned!

Now I have a complete set of chaos magic tomes. Muahahahahaha!

Also, except for gloves and shoes I have a completely artifact wardrobe, which makes those stupid acid-breathing critters much less irritating.

* * *

Up much too late, but extremely triumphant.

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5 October 2003 - Sunday

Having gotten home at some horrible hour, after a night spent away from my parasitelair, I slept in and in and in. Then I played some zangband. (Two suits of blue dragon scale mail! Artifact weapon! Hat of speediness!) Finally, however, I got my weasels together and went shopping before scheduled gaming.

* * *

Apparently gaming is at 17:00, not at 16:00. More zangband!

* * *

Earthdawn went pretty well. We did library research for half price, solved a problem with a windling's missing bags and a muleshoe, beat up a dwarf, found money and divided it equitably, bribed the city guard, sold an obnoxious person a fake relic for even more money, beat up his goons, and did more research. Legend points for everyone!

* * *

Chaos dragon scale mail! W00t!

Up too late again.

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4 October 2003 - Saturday

Despite sleepiness, we all got up in good time to play...

Amazon Quintet of Justice VId: "Forty Tentacles, No Waiting"

While Amaryllis makes friends with the drow sorcerers Erasmus and Campbell, Fresa interrogates the captured pirates under a truth spell and discovers not only the direction of their lair, but also the location of some parts of the watery cave complex that they haven't been able to explore because their ship won't fit. After some discussion, it is decided that Sophia, Serenity, and Marika will go with the ship to clean out the pirate lair while Amaryllis, Alyra, Fresa, and Gabrielle take a skiff to explore the rest of the caves. Erasmus, the senior of the drow sorcerers, goes with them despite Fresa's misgivings.

Erasmus sends his neotenous stirge familiar off to scout one way, while the boat goes down another tunnel, right into the tentacles of two giant squid! Fortunately Our Heroines see motion in the water before the squid strike, so they are able to drag the boat up onto a small island and face the threat with land under their boots. Or, in some cases, air, as Gabrielle levitates the boat to provide a platform for archery and spellcasting.

What decides the fight, though, is Fresa taking the water away from under the squids, leaving one high and dry and unable to resist being done in. The other is able to drag itself back into the water, but by the time it swims around to attack the island from the side that still has a shore, everyone is able to gang up on it. Calamari for all!

Further exploration leads to a large cavern in which the stirge spots something enormous swimming beneath the surface. Figuring that the bigger monsters must be closer to their goal, the Amazons creep around the side of the cave with as little splashing as they can manage, but it's not good enough: something large undulates through the water toward them, and they barely have time to make it to a handy beach before an ENORMOUS white alligator lunges out of the water at them!

Spells and arrows rain down on the alligator, with little effect, but when it seizes the boat in its monstrous jaws, Fresa suppresses the magic of its collar, and suddenly, they are facing a much smaller (but still very large) silver-scaled dragon! Alyra performs a fantastic feat of combat lockpicking and removes the collar, and the fight is over.

Fortunately the dragon, Kellina, is relatively friendly, and after sufficient apology and healing assumes human form to tag along with the Amazons until they find the gate back to the real world (or until she steals Erasmus from Amaryllis).

With the aid of Kellina's draconic senses, Our Heroines soon locate the island on which Prince Richard and Princess Eleanor are stranded. However, as they approach the shore, cautiously checking for traps that may have been left by the necrotheologians, unholy energies suddenly assault them!

Not too surprisingly, the two figures on the island are actually the two surviving succubi. Surviving for the moment, anyway; once they have tipped their hand, the good guys come down on them like a pile of good-aligned bricks. One succubus goes down in smoke almost immediately; the other tries to take the real Eleanor (previously knocked out and hidden in the pile of provisions) hostage. This works for just as long as it takes Amaryllis to fly around and flank him: he can't hide behind a hostage from both directions at once, and Amaryllis is a good shot with her arcane missiles. Since Fresa has already zapped him with a dimensional anchor spell, he leaves a corpse behind and can be interrogated.

At this point, the other two giant squid show up.

Fresa (in full armor) and Erasmus (squeezed into unconsciousness) get dropped into the water from the hovering boat, but after an epic dragon-squid battle, good triumphs!

After healing up everyone in need, Our Heroines make camp to replenish their magical resources before going in search of their comrades.

* * *

We had to knock off gaming earlier than we often do so that Harold could go on a date. The rest of us fed on Chinese take-out and showed Sherilyn the first three episodes of Rurouni Kenshin. Sometime about the end of episode two, we began speculating scurrilously on whether Harold had gotten lucky, but actually he returned before the end of #3. Oh well.

Zooming home in the middle of the night, la la la.

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3 October 2003 - Friday

Earl doesn't like us anymore, so there are only four people going up to AQoJ and we all fit in Harold's car. Zooom!

Friendliness by Earl (Mon Oct 6 16:52:22 2003)

I like you (plural) just fine! It is just not feasible for me to leave town. -Earl

Re: Friendliness by Trip (Tue Oct 7 10:51:15 2003)

It is very sad that Sherilyn lives in East Bumfuck, yes. :(

that's what i wanted to ask you! by EEHH? (Thu Oct 9 17:58:37 2003)

well, not much!

Re: that's what i wanted to ask you! by Trip (Fri Oct 10 08:39:12 2003)

Sorry, my natural-language parser has crashed. What does this comment mean?

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2 October 2003 - Thursday

Hooray! It's LIRALENDAY!

* * *

Instead of playing zangband forever and ever, I actually watched Haibane-Renmei. As was foretold, it is very slow, but also very pretty, and full of mystery.

* * *

Then I stayed up too late. Sigh.

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1 October 2003 - Wednesday

Fooey. Ousted already. Oh well.

* * *

No new Noir, no new RahXephon, but there is Haibane-Renmei! Wheee!

* * *

But instead of watching new anime I spent the evening reading The Course of Empire by Eric Flint and K D Wentworth, which was actually fairly good. Naturally unionized aliens! Kinda.

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