2015 so far

Ah, the new year has not been kind to me thus far. After a series of toothaches, and a marriage, I’ve finally manned up and gone to the dentist. My first attempt was a step forward but not what I had hoped it would be. Only 5 x-rays were usable and the dentist decided it would be better if I went to another dentist that specialized in sedation dentistry. The place he recommended did not fully cover the costs of my treatment so we had to cancel that appointment and make another on the same day at a place recommended to us by Jason’s cousin.

At this place, I wasn’t really nervous at all. I took my Ativan before I arrived but it didn’t kick in until a bit later. I’ve decided to take it a lot earlier this next time so that as soon as we get in, I can be treated. The treatment this time around? Eek, a root canal. As somebody who has NEVER experienced one but only heard terrible things, I’m understandably nervous. However, we’ve moved forward a lot since the days where the root canal was the most dreaded thing so I am hoping very much that it will be–if not pleasant–a tolerable experience to get through something I really need.

If this experience is a positive one, I know that my dental fears, while not conquered, will be much easier to deal with in the future. We are talking a night and day difference here. I used to sob and shake when I so much as walked through the door to a dentist and even talking about them would break me out in a cold sweat. So far, those negative feelings are beginning to ebb. Beginning. But I don’t think I’ll ever see the day where I’m EXCITED to have dental work done. I’ll just be glad if it doesn’t fill me with a sick sense of dread when it’s so much as brought up.

So tomorrow I will experience my very first root canal. Here’s to hoping that with Ativan and possibly a little help from nitrous oxide, I can make it through the experience intact and feeling positive about dental work in general.

The New Year Is Almost Here

I thought I would share a recent comment I made on Facebook because it’s so true!

It’s been a busy year and some amazing stuff has happened. This is the year my sister got married, my best friend got married, and I got married. This is the year when I went out to my very first concert with my best friend and stayed at the best hotel I’ve ever been to! This is the year that I went on a road trip all the way up northern California, where I got to see where my husband’s family grew up, and I got to take a ferry around the San Francisco bay. This is the year I went to Kcon and got to meet one of my best online friends. This is the year my little nephew Harley was born. This is the year I finally got to see where my best friend moved, where we watched old anime and even went whale watching.

A lot has happened and I’m thankful for every experience, even if I sometimes don’t seem like it at the time. 2014 was a great year to be alive and I can’t wait to see what happens in 2015. I love you guys! See you next year.

It’s very true. A lot has changed this year. I did a lot of things that I never thought I’d be able to. It’s been a strange ride and through some of it, I might have even been a bit of a grouch. Now that I look back on it, though, I’m glad that I’ve had those experiences.

I also forgot one: this is the year I turned 30 years old. That humbles me. When I was young, I thought 30 was so old and that life after 30 would basically be over. That’s not true at all. I’m 30 years old and I still have a lot yet to experience. Let’s just hope most of those new experiences will be positive.

Merry Christmas!

It’s that time of year again: Christmas! It’s been an eventful December for us. My toothache came roaring back and my face swelled up. I had to go to the urgent care clinic out here to get some antibiotics. The timing was awful, since we just bought a thousand gifts only a couple days beforehand.

Oh and the antibiotics! Well, I have a severe choking phobia and so I don’t swallow large pills. The small ones, about Advil sized or smaller, I can take now, through a bit of training. But antibiotics are traditionally pretty large and these ones were no exception. Luckily, the pharmacist said I could open up the capsules and pour the powder into pudding to take them.

One cup of pudding is pretty quick to eat but the bitter taste of those antibiotics. *SHUDDER* It was only eleven days of my life but it was still nasty. Three times a day, I had to choke down pudding sprinkled with drugs. I got through it and I thought I would see a dentist three days from my last dose. Sadly, that was not to be. I won’t be covered by my husband’s insurance until the first of next year so we had to reschedule my appointment for the sixth. Aw…

Now we’re here, Christmas Day! The household is sick with some nasty flu but we’re going to mom’s later tonight for a dinner and some games, along with the usual gift exchanging. It should be a good time and it’s just the day.

Yesterday, my sister and brother were blowing up my phone, so I’m sure they want to see me, too!

Anyway, it’s 3:30 in the morning so I need to get some sleep.

Merry Christmas!

This War Of Mine

Recently, a friend pointed me toward this game so I thought I would talk a little about it. Currently, I have logged in 29 in-game days of survival in this war game where you don’t get to be the military officer. No, you are the survivors, hunkering down in your shelter and trying to make it to the end of the war (which I’ve been informed lasts 45 days). Hey, I’m about halfway there! (I don’t think I’m lasting much longer, though, more on that in a moment.)

So This War Of Mine is available on Steam and it’s a point and click game in which you play as a group of survivors in a war. You start the game with three survivors with skills that may help you down the line. For example, there is Bruno who has the skill Good Cook and when he cooks, he takes up less resources. In fact, I didn’t even know anybody else could cook for the first couple of in-game weeks because I never had enough to make more than one Bruno bowl of meat soup.

Each day is split into a night and day cycle. During the day, you can explore your shelter and forage for goods that may be hidden behind rubble. You can also craft items, cook, and have your guys rest, eat, medicate themselves, etc. If you have characters who are addicted to cigarettes and you happen to have cigarettes in your inventory, they will even have a seat and smoke. The same goes for books. If you find books in the shelter, they may lie down in bed with a book.

When night falls, you have a few options. You can set your guys to sleep, sleep in a bed (if you have them–enough beds for all was my first move), guard the shelter, or scavenge. You can only choose one person to scavenge a night and you only get to scavenge one area a night, so if you run into trouble and you have to literally run out of the building, you pretty much forfeit the night and come home empty-handed. Or you die, if your character doesn’t escape on time.

In my playthrough, I started with Marko, a good scavenger, Pavle, a fast runner, and Bruno, a good cook. Sometime in my first week, Marko was murdered while out scavenging. Bruno took it pretty hard, since they were pals. Shortly afterward, an old man named Anton knocked on the door and took him in. His skill is Good Mathematician, which I thought would come in handy but still hasn’t at the time of this writing.

For me, it was just Pavle, Bruno, and Anton for a good long while. I set up a rhythm. Pavle would scavenge during the night while Bruno would guard the shelter. Anton would sleep if he was sick, otherwise he would help guard and then during the day, we would all sleep in shifts while the waking guys would craft items, cook, and eat. Then we met Roman, who defected from the military. I let him join the group and things became pretty good for us. Roman’s skill at combat made him indispensable, so he guarded the shelter each night and every time we were raided, he fended them off successfully. In most cases, nobody on our side even got hurt!

Meanwhile, Pavle continued to scavenge because of his 12 slot holding capacity and fast runner skill. Things were good. Then everything got screwed up when winter hit. Since I had scavenged all the safe places, we were bringing in less supplies and that meant less wood. Despite having built a heater for the shelter, we rarely had enough wood to cook and warm the shelter each night. So one night, Pavle went out scavenging and came back to Roman having frozen to death. Pavle was killed while scavenging only a few days later.

Bruno took all this very hard. He went from sad to depressed and several times, he had to be talked to because he was on the verge of suicide. The other members of the group all tried to calm him down but he wasn’t looking good. Then a woman showed up on the doorstep. She came to us wounded but she had the sneak quietly skill. However, she came at a bad time. With the cold pressing in and no food, Anton became terminally ill. Bruno had to pay the hospital several visits to search for medication and bandages. During one night, the shelter was raided while completely defenseless. All our supplies were stolen.

The characters’ moods are delicate and when things get bad, they really fall apart. At one point, while I still had Pavle, he witnessed a woman being raped and when he came back home, he shut off completely for days. I couldn’t even get him to sleep or eat. He just kept talking about her and how he wished he could have done something. The other members of the group knew he couldn’t have taken the man who did it but he was never the same afterward. He was constantly sad.

Now that I’m on day 29, my characters aren’t looking good. They’re all sick, hungry, sad, and tired. The cold is settling in and it’s difficult to scavenge with the current members of the group. Food is scarce, medication is hard to get a hold of. I now regret using meds as a barter for food at the beginning, when I didn’t need meds but desperately needed food.

This game is definitely depressing but it’s also interesting. I recommend at least giving it a try if you can, or watch a playthrough. But it won’t be the same until you’re the one driving all the decisions.

A rant on the fear of old roleplay sites

I suppose there’s no real way to get stubborn people outside their comfort zones. I mean, we did just get three new members on Somnia in the last week, which is pretty amazing after months of nothing. But two of those members are new to RP and were brought in by one of our older members and a long time RPing friend of mine.

Also… People say things like they never want to join older sites but how are they going to feel when their site is five years old and it’s like pulling teeth to get new members? I’ll bet you anything they’ll be saying the same things I am. My members are pretty excited whenever somebody new shows up because it hardly ever happens. They’re definitely not shunning or hazing anybody. In fact, they usually go out of their way to present them with plot ideas.

We all have a huge number of characters, as well, so when there’s a new member, it’s another opportunity to further plots with characters who have been neglected by the rest of the member base. I personally have quite a few characters who aren’t so beloved by the other members and they get ignored. Any time we have a new member, I have new hope that I’ll be able to tell a story with that character. So they aren’t shut out of stories, they in fact become integral to brand new ones, even if the characters they are playing with are old. I have a character who’s been on the site since it opened who’s got a whopping NOTHING going on because the two members I plotted him with before disappeared.

I guess shit can happen on any site but it’s honestly pretty hurtful to keep hearing it over and over again, everywhere I go. I hear the same old excuses. “I feel like an outsider. Everybody already knows each other and I don’t know them.” Like it’s any different on a new site? Chances are you don’t know anybody there, either but somehow it’s better because the site itself doesn’t have a lot of history? I dunno. I’m just sick of it.

People like that don’t even try my site, they just base their experiences off other sites, which is like saying you don’t want to eat at Chili’s because your experience at Applebee’s was bad. Sure, they’re both restaurants but the owner, staff, and menu are completely different. The experience won’t necessarily be the same. It’s a kid refusing to eat anything green without ever tasting it. Meh.

I’m sick of it all. The excuses not to try something new just because there are other people experiencing the setting before you did. I’m sick of how self-centered people are. They cry clique the second a subject comes up that they don’t understand because what? They expect the previous members to act distantly with one another? Act like they don’t know one another? Not every conversation is going to be about YOU, I’m sorry to say and they won’t always be on subjects you can chime in about. That can and will happen on any site, not just old ones.

Anyway, I had to get that off my chest somewhere… It’s annoying trying to get people to try a site that is not only older but also on a software people aren’t used to and sometimes, I just need to rant about it.

Follow You

Long, wicked black claws curled around his closet door with a soft tick-tick sound. One narrow red eye peered through the slim opening, glowing imperiously. Everything else in the room was cast in deep shadow. Only that eye and those claws seemed visible in a sea of darkness.
Matthew held his breath and watched. He tried not to move. He tried not to exist. Wide hazel eyes remained fixed on the claws because the eye filled him with cold dread. That eye paralyzed him.
Visions of blood and claw marks flashed through his memory, sepia and red film reeling violently. Matthew could not breathe. He couldn’t think. He closed his eyes. He trembled.
The sound of claws sliding over wood and plaster sent a shiver down his spine.
“Gil,” he whispered, his voice shaking on the single syllable.
He heard Gil’s voice in his head.
“I see them every night, Matt. They’re hunting me.”

School

NOVEMBER 7: school

“Lemme school you on this,” Connor said in his lyrical accent, shaking the can of spray paint in his hand. He regarded the dusty brick wall in front of him with a slightly tilted his head. He took a step forward. “I’ve been doing this since you were in diapers.”

“Uh-huh,” Noel said but he watched Connor with veiled interest in his blue eyes. He sat on an old milk crate turned upside down, hands between his legs and gripping the crate. His black and grey striped tuque was pulled down low enough to cover his eyebrows, covering his piercing. He bit his lower lip and Connor could see him jiggling his right leg before his gaze darted around.

“Don’t worry, we won’t be caught,” he assured the kid before he stepped forward and began to spray out his initials. CDO. He smirked at its correlation with OCD. People thought that was what it was, the code that he sprayed. He heard some girls scoffing about it before and he almost laughed aloud right in their ears. He didn’t, of course. Graffiti artists were a notorious attention seeking lot but they wanted to remain anonymous at the same time. It was a weird kind of exhibition.

“You start with your signature?” Noel asked.

“Yep.” He didn’t bother explaining why.

When he finished his initials, he started in on his actual painting, which he had decided would be…

“Is that a shamrock?” Noel asked.

“Yep.” He smirked. “Irish, in case you didn’t notice.”

Crashing

It’s a little early but I’m already at that point in my NaNo novel where I hate what I’m writing… Just going to keep chugging along because I want to at least finish this thing but once it’s over, I need to go back to my one of my older novels and get in some editing…