2017: A review

2017 is coming to a close. It started poorly, ended poorly, but you know…

It might have had some good things too.

The Bad

Let’s rip that band-aid right off and start with the stuff that sucked.

  • Started the year doing EMDR therapy, which frankly, was a really rough experience. It helped a lot, but it required the re-visitation of a lot of memories that I had repressed for decades. But, it made things better.
  • Found a mass on my left kidney. Still waiting on more tests (an MRI, to be specific) to determine if the surgeon is going to remove it or not, but, it’s not exactly the news you’d like to receive. Especially when I received it.
  • My daughter, Nora, was diagnosed with T-cell lymphoma in November. The same cancer I had when I was a child. I’m going to make the assumption that the EMDR therapy at the beginning of the year prevented me from spiraling out of control.
  • Panic attack – I had my first for sure panic attack this year. I’m gonna go ahead and not recommend that to anyone.
  • Leaving the Warmachine/Hordes community – some events took place that lead me to no longer feel welcome/safe in the community based on my personal needs and frankly, basic human decency. It still hurts that I no longer have that outlet and I haven’t sufficiently replaced it, but I don’t feel like I made the wrong choice for leaving.

I had plans of writing some ‘mediocre’ things but you know what? You don’t give a shit and I can’t think of any that are actually interesting/important, so on to the juicy good stuff.

The Good

  • I ran a Spartan Sprint with my best friend, Britt. We didn’t die. We want to do it again.
  • I ran a Half Marathon on my own in 2 hours 20 minutes. I trained for it in 6 weeks (not recommended). I mean, Zita was supposed to join me, but I think she was just trying to trick me into doing it with out her anyway.
  • I ran multiple sub 30 minute 5ks.
  • I started commission painting. (Dead Planet Creations)
  • I read 29 books this year (goal was 30, but one was Lord of the Rings and I only counted it as one book, plus I didn’t count any of the comics I read) plus, I could theoretically finish the last book tonight, but looks unlikely based on what I want to do (I want to do accounting tonight, yikes, I’m super exciting).
  • Enjoyed several PWA events with Brandon and took in a WWE show with Brandon and Danielle.
  • Several adventures with Emily.
  • Went to therapy at least once a month.
  • Did more volunteer work.

2018 is going to create some challenges for my family, but we’re ready. Maybe the goals I had thought for the year won’t be achievable, but, I’ll find something new.

Let the wookiee win

My son is starting to get older (granted, he’s still only 3) but we’ve begun to play more structured games, which got me thinking.

If/when we start playing competitive board/video/etc games, should I let him win from time to time?

The obvious answer is yes, you should!  But, I’m not so sure that it’s that clear-cut.  Like most parents, I think my kid is pretty smart.  Won’t he figure out that I’m not trying very hard?  Will that teach him that I don’t think he’s an opponent worth putting my full energy into?  Alternatively, will winning all the time teach him to dislike a hobby that I really would like him to enjoy with me?

I think ultimately, it will depend on him and the game.  Some games make it easier to hide that you’re making bad choices, and there are plenty of games that have enough randomness that I probably don’t have to do anything to help things along.

Ultimately, I know that I should be teaching that having fun with me is more important than the outcome, but show me a person that doesn’t like to win time to time.  Absolutely, having fun is the #1 goal, but I remember myself as a young kid – I wanted to win.  I expect nothing different from my kids.

I think this is one of those tricky spots in parenting, or, maybe I’m just reading too much into things.

I’m a winner (and in debt)!

It has been a really busy month for me and my wife.  As some of you know, we’ve been looking to move out of our apartment and into a house for a little while now.  For over a little over a month, we’ve been out looking at houses with a Realtor – and about two weeks ago, we found a place we quite liked.  We moved through all the details of putting an offer in and negotiating and all that jazz and as of last week, the house has been officially sold.  We’re very excited about it.  But of course, this is also coupled with the mortgage debt that inevitably shows up with a home purchase.

It always amuses me that people get so excited about being in debt for 20+ years.

I also received some very exciting news recently – I have been selected as a winner of a MacBook Air from CMA Alberta.  The contest was for going to one of their events.  I’m very excited about it, especially since I’ve always wanted to have a laptop to assist with my GMing.  I can use it to track damage, quick reference my preparation documents, powers and all that other stuff – and, I can potentially make the game a bit more cool by the addition of music/sound effects.  I’m excited about the potential that a laptop brings to the gaming experience.

Just before Halloween, I was able to participate in a Trail of Cthulhu game, run by a friend of mine.  It was my first real horror game (while Dark Heresy has some horror elements, I wouldn’t really call it a horror game) and I really enjoyed it, even though my character was devoured first.  It was a great time and I would really like to be able to participate in another game like that in the future.

Trail of Cthulhu is an interesting system and from the single game, I found it fairly ideal for the type of story being told.  I haven’t read the rules cover to cover, so I can’t really give a holistic view on things, but the experience with the ruleset was extremely positive.

Finally, Fallout 3 was released this week.  My copy is on the way from Amazon.  I’m really excited about the game.  It looks amazing, the reviews have been very positive, and the game appears to have no shortage of ‘holy crap that’s fraking awesome’ moments.  I’m very exited.

Trying Something New

As I had indicated in yesterday’s post, I’m going to try and keep a list of wines (and recommendations) for you folks in internet land to use for reference.  I’ve also decided that since I quite enjoy food with my wine, I should try putting up some of my favorite recipies (except for the ones that Emily and I keep a secret!!!).

I’m also going to put up a list of games that I have, along with any thoughts about them.  I’m not sure what I’ll include and exclude, but I’m definately putting up my RPGs and Board Games.

I could put up all sorts of lists, but really, I think three is enough.

 So I hope that this information interests you as it is populated.  As always, your comments are welcome and appreciated!