We've been warm

2017-Jan-17, Tuesday 11:57 pm
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I feel better about SAGA so far this year than I was at the end of last year. Part of it may be the numbers are already high enough that multiple games were going for a significant portion of the evenings. I have yet to decide what I think about the intention to theme evenings through the year. Much of it will be RPG stuff which isn't of interest to me, but some of it is relevant to Board Games. I also realise I'm not really the target for the theming.
Unless the weather is worse tomorrow night than I'm expecting it to be I'll be gaming again then as well. The Wednesday group does seem to have regained my interest as well, although when the location is further away I might not be as inclined to go out.

I still haven't been back to work, although I was offered a shift on Monday night. Starting at 2200 and pushing a button when there was a problem on the conveyor was really not of interest. Both because of the time, and because I've found that watching that sort of motion causes a headache. Going back will result in the normal shock to the system with me having been going to bed after midnight for the past month.

Temperatures of late have been what I like, although being able to stay at home throughout the day makes it less of an issue than it would be for others. Walking to games has still been t-shirt and shorts weather, and getting home would be as well (if I'd needed to walk home). The fact this house has so much shade from trees keep the house cooler than it would be without fans etc.

Reflection on gaming

2017-Jan-10, Tuesday 11:56 pm
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I got asked recently about my lack of desire to play 2-player games. I'd not really given any thought to the why, since it became obvious to me more than a year ago. Two obvious reasons came to mind as far as influential factors when I did start thinking about it.
The first being that the games I like most are typically (much) better at the full player count. Agricola, Princes of Florence, Galaxy Trucker.
The second was the factor of a 2-player game being, of necessity, myself and a single other person. There aren't many people whose company I enjoy that much that I'd seek out a game with them that way, and fewer still that I expect to enjoy mine enough.
A third reason, upon further reflection; I have two basic experiences with two player games (most but not all). My opponent was either a man that I sort of saw as a father figure (or, much earlier, my actual father), or, in more recent times, a romantic partner. Neither of those apply in any way to most of those I might game with now.
There's also going to be an element of correlation between 2 player and abstract games. For someone that claims to not care about theme, and largely ignores it during explanation, I am disinclined to play most abstracts.

Before I headed to Saga tonight I had already played as many games this January as I did through all of January last year. That was largely based on three game days, each being about 10 hours. I'm not expecting any more day long sessions this month but wouldn't likely turn down the option. Especially while I'm not yet back at work I'm going probably going to go to the Wednesday game nights again, the slightly "heavier" games than Monday and Saga typically have is good. I still haven't felt inclined to make it to the Friday group, but that's mainly distance, and expecting the games to not be of much interest to me.
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Wednesday night I went out to game somewhere new, with the current iteration of the group that I started attending nearly nine years ago. Furthering the "new that wasn't new" I played El Grande for the first time in six years and only the second time I remember seeing it in recent years. I also played Tiny Epic Galaxies, for the second time, a year after my first play, and am now wondering if there was something done wrong the first time.

New Years Eve I got invited to the home of a couple of friends, and spent the night playing board games with the two of them. Or, slightly more accurately, spent half the night playing with the two of them as one got tired and went to read. As midnight hit I was involved in a game of Gin Rummy, which I think was the first time I'd played since the end of 1997.
Sleeping on their bed was a bit less restful than normal, but part of that would have simply been it not being my bed. Having their cat make noise moving around in the morning also had me awake earlier than I wanted to be. The walk back to my part of the city, and the church service, was warmer than I'd expected and I could easily have not bothered with my jacket while away. That's been the only really hot day recently, I'm hoping for more.

I spent almost all of my waking hours yesterday away from here playing even more boardgames. As a result of being there I didn't go the regular Monday Night session that I have normally been to for the past 6 years. Half of what I played was games I like a lot; Agricola with actual drafting of cards at the start, Asara where we had very close end game scores, and El Capitan for the first time in six months. I also got to play Crazy Karts which I can see holding interest for a while, especially if there's an expectation that some one will be showing up late. The other two were Saboteur (which is a better filler than most) and Terra Mystica (which I'm okay with playing, just not eager).

This coming weekend I'm probably going to be gaming both days, in a couple of locations. A week from now SAGA is apparently going to have started up again so I might be back to gaming a lot, much earlier in the year than normal.

As I've been doing since the first year I was gaming with the Wednesday night group I went to the effort of using BGG and my records there to create a geeklist of all the Boardgames I played at least five times through the year. A list that was different to those of recent years in a few ways.
* My most played game in 2016 was only played 41 times, last year the high count was 73 and one year hit 91.
* A bunch of games that had been on last years list didn't appear this time, some of which I'm not sorry to see go, a few I regret not playing more.
* Five fewer games on the list compared to last year, which isn't a great reduction, especially considering how much less I gamed in 2016.
* On that topic, I only played 533 games through the year, in 2012 the count was 866. The simplest reason is that by not going to the Wednesday group at most of the locations cut out about 20% of what I might have played. I missed more of the Monday group than normal as well (because of distance) and there were a lot fewer short games played there, as well as earlier finish times.
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Last Wednesday I went out in the morning and helped someone shift into a new place. The walk there was long enough that I started to feel warm enough to remove my jacket and the day was warm enough that I didn't put it back on. As has seemed normal when I help people shift I felt as though I wasn't really doing a lot, even with my being one of the few actually loading stuff on the trailer.

My Christmas day ended up a bit different than I'd expected as I did wake early enough to get to the service at RBC. As I was arriving I saw the family of an ex walking in, and moments after I got into the auditorium the youngest spotted me and headed towards me. For much of the rest of the service I had at least one of the three of them near me. After walking with them to the car I made the effort to say goodbye to a few other people and walked home. Most of the rest of my afternoon and evening was spent in the lounge at my flat, watching Transformers and a couple of movies.

Boxing day I was awake too early and then went out for the afternoon. The family of the friend I helped shift last week had a BBQ that I was invited to. I knew most of those that were there early, and recognised some of those that arrived later, but spent most of my time there with the children and some of the others that I already knew. The family has a couple of cats, and a dog, the younger cat spent a while on my lap late in the afternoon and one of the others present was kind enough to take photos of it. I made a couple of attempts in the evening to get more photos of the cat when it sat on my lap again, that wasn't managed as well. As I was about to leave I got offered food, which is fairly common, and ended up bringing home a bucket of food. Salad, rice, and a bunch of sausages/patties in a Cookie Time bucket. I still have the sausages/patties, but that was always going to take longer to get through.

Bah Humbug (again)

2016-Dec-20, Tuesday 11:59 pm
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Not even a week until Christmas is done with for another year and if was subjected to much in the way of media I'd be looking forward to that even more than I am. I might go spend an hour at the Christmas Eve service RBC is having on Saturday but it's unlikely I'll be making the effort to get up in time for the Sunday service. Most of the rest of the "Christmas" time will be spend with my laptop watching YouTube videos or in the lounge watching DVDs.

Board gaming has picked up for me a bit recently, going back to SAGA on Thursday because of the SGM led to me doing the best I've ever done with Castles of Mad King Ludwig. I also went to the Wednesday group last week and had a good time there. Fortuitously being present for the last session one of the regulars will be at due to him shifting away from Christchurch the following day.
With Game Depository getting sold I decided to spend some money there at the weekend, placing an order on Facebook Sunday night. The box was at my door when I got home from work yesterday and I've already played one of the games. Two of the others were a game I play elsewhere as friends have it, and online through STEAM.

Work dropped off a little quicker than I'd have expected, I got a single day last week (declined Friday afternoon) and have had a short day yesterday for this week which will probably be it until next year. Having done so many weeks of more than two days recently I'm not hurting for money at all and it's left me in a position to help a friend shift house tomorrow.
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Two weeks from now Christmas will be over and I'll be in the enforced two weeks of time off work. I'm not sure how things are going to go once the factory starts up again, it's probably been heavily Christmas work leading to the mass of shifts available. Then again, the last time I did less than two days of work in a week was August (discounting a couple of days I left an hour early), corresponding reasonably closely with the departure of the prior intermediary. Over that time frame (late August to now) my average weekly income for the financial year to date has gone up by $50.

Over the weekend just been I attended two different gaming events. The first was SAGAs final event for the year, with what seemed like lower turnout than had been expected, and the usual RPG bias in attendees. Aside from the 2-player games of Pandemic, and a few games of Sentinels of the Multiverse (also a co-op) I think I played in every Board Game that was played while I was there apart from the game of Paperback that was started very early on the Saturday. I ended up leaving a few hours earlier than I'd have liked, as the attendance had dropped enough that to play in something I'd have had to put up with gaming with someone I refuse to.
On Sunday I headed to church, spent a little while talking with a few people, before heading back home to pick up my bag with a couple of games and head to Sydenham for the birthday party of a friend. While there I taught many of his extended family how to play Chicken Caesar and Sushi Go, as well as getting to play Hey! That's My Fish! for the first time in nearly two years (and play a few other games.) Even knowing fewer of the people "well" I had a better time there and I'm sure that wouldn't have been the case a couple of years ago.

Tomorrow morning will be the last Mainly Music for the year, and it's expected to be packed, partly due to "Santa" showing up. I will be braving the mall afterwards so I can buy food. My evening may (hopefully) be spent gaming with the Wednesday group I was once very regular at, I just need to not feel tired in the late afternoon and be willing to go walking.
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I'm going to miss the second day of SAGAs final event for the year, so I can spend that afternoon/evening with friends and play games there instead. With certain people not likely to attend the SAGA event, I found the decision incredibly simple.

I'll be "getting" a couple of weeks off over the Christmas / New Year period as the factory shuts down almost completely. I've been told that the forms to request leave will be at the factory, but I'm feeling a bit doubtful. I'm also feeling that I'd rather just keep working a couple of days each week but realise it's completely not practical.

While machinery wasn't working today there was a brief discussion about money, and needing to work so many days, etc... Yet again the amount of work I need to sustain my lifestyle surprised someone and I got the unneeded reminder of how unique my lifestyle seems to be.

Going up?

2016-Nov-29, Tuesday 11:54 pm
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I've started going back to Mainly Music on a regular basis, skipping work Wednesdays for extra time in bed and a little over an hour in a room with lots of preschool children. Since the prior liaison left the temp agency I've been getting offered more than enough work to feel completely at ease turning down shifts to do more fun things. I've also managed to accumulate funds in my bank account such that I will easily afford the next holiday I'm possibly taking. The extra work is conflicting with sleep however, and now I have a smart phone I've not even been trying to nap during my lunch break. This might have to change.

At SAGA tonight I played a game of Castles of Mad King Ludwig, doing best of the three that didn't win. He that did win was easily ahead from early on and had paid much more attention to the favour tiles than I did. I also played in a game of Colosseum and did the best I ever have. Not quite as good as I've seen a couple of other people manage, but very close. A feat admittedly helped largely by divesting myself of tiles I'd been gathering in exchange for others that had seemed unwanted by others.

Looking at my calendar it seems that I've just started a couple of weeks of friends anniversary celebrations. Adding in the end of last week there's also what seems like a higher than normal number of birthdays.

With a couple of very warm days recently I've noticed the colder days a little more than normal, but been quite happy to have time not needing shirts, socks, etc to stay warm. Today at work was hot enough in the factory that it was me that opened the external door near the machine I was at. Typically I'm barely getting hot at the end of the shift. I might need to figure out shorts to wear instead of the jeans I typically wear.

ETA 2016-11-30: I had intended to mention NaNoWriMo as it finishes tonight. This was the second year in a row that I didn't sign up, going to meetups, try to write anything, etc. after a decade of taking part. I miss spending time with a couple of the people that I met because of NaNo, and that's the thing I regret, not the lack of writing. I wonder if I'd have been more inclined to take part if I'd realised earlier that Thursdays at SAGA would be a non-issue for me? Or if I'd considered using my smart phone to write at work?

(no subject)

2016-Nov-22, Tuesday 11:59 pm
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Unsurprisingly the Smart Phone I purchased cheap has some issues. Even after being gifted a "small" mini-SD card on Monday night I've been having issue with the memory. Transferring everything to the SD card that I could helped but now I've installed some games (from the Humble Bundle) things are problematic again. I am still able to play most of what I try to but there are occasional restarts. I suppose that's a good indication I should have spent a little more money to get something with more internal memory.

I didn't actually spend the first weekend of this month doing what I'd expected, previous years RBC has finished early so people would be able to go join the event and that didn't happen this year. I actually ended up minding a few of the children while parents had a meeting which took until the other event was finished. It's felt a bit weird to have stuff happening (practically) every weekend, although it has meant I've not felt like travelling across the city and haven't made an effort to go see the friend I was meaning to see at the end of September. The weekend activity combined with increased hours at work has led to me being able to consume somewhat less media than I had been, I haven't yet dropped anything from YouTube or iTunes, but I think both will be getting a reduction soon.
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Christmas is coming up soon. I won't be celebrating it and haven't for a few years. Even while I had faith I found the commercialisation of the holiday unwelcome and without faith that's about all that's left. Nearly nine years ago John Scalzi wrote an entry on his blog detailing why he doesn't want gifts and since finding it I've basically accepted the truth of it for my life. Granted, I don't have the financial wherewithal that he does, but practically everything I want, I buy. Christmas means nothing to me besides enforced time away from work, and people dealing with pressure to spend money they probably don't have.

With the earthquakes starting up again (at least temporarily) I have been reminded of how little care about such compared to others. I probably took close to a minute to actually get out of my seat when the first big one hit yesterday morning. First thing I did after it stopped was send a message to a friend on the other side of the planet figuring it would be good to prevent the first thing she saw about such being just "earthquake" or the like. I then sent a text message to my parents and sister to let them know I was okay. After a short while spent looking at GeoNet etc. I was back to what I had been doing, and reading what others were posting. While doing so my mind went back to the start of the more local quakes in 2010, where I'd been sent a text minutes later by a nearby friend and ended up spending most of the day with her to keep her company.

I was once able to look at the people I knew at church and respect the differences in opinion I had compared to the accepted beliefs there. This has changed in some areas, noticeably with the attitude to one individual starting to wear dresses (and probably makeup etc. I didn't pay attention while both of us were present.) and comments I've heard second hand (I won't say who from specifically) about the attire of young people as well as recent drumpf issues. I can't accept the attitude towards anyone that isn't heterosexual, cis-gendered, etc. as being just a matter of opinion. And I have refused to be a part of the board gaming that was apparently going to start up soonish, because I was informed it would be a Mens group thing. While I'd not likely have taken part in the Mens breakfasts etc. that have also been run over the past few years (because I'm very disinclined to eat in a group setting like that) the gender segregation bothered me about those as well. Not as early as it should have though.

I posted a couple of years back that I didn't want to be called uncle, something that happens a lot at church due simply to me spending time with the young children. I'm no blood kin of any child, and won't be, which makes being called uncle annoying. The fact that the children I'm with most often when referred to as uncle are those of my second ex just makes things worse.

Lethargic weekend.

2016-Nov-08, Tuesday 11:59 pm
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I made it along to the Mainly Music session on Wednesday last week, which involved a bit more walking than normal as most of the group had headed to the Community Garden for a time. Once getting to where they were I got to hold the nearly 1 year old and then spent much of the following hour with him in my arms or beside me.
After the clean up of that I headed to the mall and started wandering around the stores that sell smartphones (and had an extended wander through the DVDs at JB) before deciding to spend a little money on getting my first. I didn't get around to registering the number on that SIM and probably won't be, initially because I didn't remember the need for such more than a dozen years after getting my prior SIM. With the fact that it's an Android and I have been adding various things to the app WishList for quite some time it didn't take long to download a number of apps. I am going to need to get a mini-SD card though as the memory is unsurprisingly low for a cheap phone but the "essentials" seem to be working fine. If I get the current Humble Bundle of at least half a dozen games I'd like to own I'll need even more space to get them as well.

Near the end of my work shift on Thursday I had a couple of sneezing fits and had been feeling weary enough before lunch that I let the agency know I wouldn't be working Friday. By the time I might have been leaving for SAGA (if not for my prior decision to skip it on Thursdays) I was feeling more lethargic and had started going through tissues. I woke earlier than I wanted on Friday and then spent almost all day just on my recliner with my laptop and occasional smartphone play. The dreams I had that night were the first recurrent dreams I remember having, with me waking up three or four times over the 11 hours or so I spent in bed trying to sleep.

On one level I feel like I should be in Hanmer Springs at the moment, with another couple of hours at least before I'd be heading to bed. The Wednesday night came group that I was once a regular part of is having their annual getaway over Show Weekend and some of them have headed up particularly early. Having missed the past couple of years due to the first SAGA 48-hour-charity-event and then money issues last year, I was again unsure of whether I'd be able to attend until very recently. This year the 48 event is again over show weekend so I'd been thinking I'd be there most of this weekend. Instead I've been invited to a smaller private gathering with friends and I'll be there on the Friday, probably heading home after. On Saturday I do think I'll be attending from as early as I can be bothered, and probably leaving much earlier than I would have expected a few months ago. It's become obvious to me that many of those I'd be gaming with over the 48 aren't people I want to spend a lot of time gaming with.
Tonight I had my new phone with me, and in addition to using it to do the scoring for 7 Wonders (and get a headstart on BGG play recording), I also had it playing music most of the time I was playing, and found myself far less irritated by the slowness of others at the table than I think I would have otherwise been.

Being busy

2016-Nov-01, Tuesday 11:49 pm
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Since the end of August I've been typically getting three days of work and that's with me turning down Wednesdays for a while so I can go and spend time at the Mainly Music sessions I used to be helping at every week. I don't know how long the better situation will last but I'm managing to save money each week which is good.

This coming weekend will be the eighth in a row that I've had plans besides simply attend church on Sunday morning. One of those weekends I was going to go visit a friend that ended up with conflicting plans such that I didn't go see her. I still spent much of that weekend away from here feeding the cat at another friends place (and walking). There is a local area community event this Sunday around noon and while I'm not expecting to spend a lot of time there I do hope to see certain people.
Show weekend will make nine with the SAGA 48 hour charity event and while I'm not going to make any effort to stay awake the entire time I'll probably be there most of the weekend.

The mass of activity at work and weekend has impacted on how far through my Media backlog I manage to get each day. iTunes is currently at about 18 hours of podcasts not listened to and YouTube has 60 unwatched videos on the Watch Later playlist, without me updating it today. I had thought I'd buy a smartphone yesterday which might have impacted how much audio I listened to each day, but the branch I went to doesn't sell phones.

A short while ago I started thinking about what should happen to my stuff when I die, I don't know what brought it on. So far I've decided that my copy of Chicken Caesar goes to someone specific as it seems she's enjoyed it more than I do each time she's played. Her husband requested another game and I'm more inclined to leave him the Babylon 5 DVDs I own. The actual listing is going to take a while and I'll have to make it obvious somewhere so it could be found when needed. About a dozen years ago I signed a will, but there wasn't a lot of detail in it, and my parents would currently be tasked with dealing with all my stuff. Most of which they'll have no idea about.

Big weekend

2016-Oct-25, Tuesday 11:59 pm
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Three day weekend and I basically spent two of those days playing games. A couple of weeks ago I posted here that I'd be interested in playing Eclipse during the weekend if certain others were willing. The ease with which it happened means I'll probably sort another similar event at some point in the next couple of months, unless the SAGA 48 and Mini-Con IV sate desire.
A couple from the Wednesday group hosted games at their place on Sunday, starting late morning and going until late. I headed to church first and then spent about an hour walking across to South City area. I had a very ranged performance over the many games I played, winning four of them (two by wide margins) and getting thoroughly beaten in three of them. It was good to see the home of the couple, and now I know where to go if they host on a Wednesday night I have free.
The game of Eclipse went well enough for four of us, the fifth had very unfortunate draws while expanding and got hemmed in with not much chance of getting out. I had what seemed like poor early draws finding no more material worlds and having to make do with minimal income of such each round. The winner had what we all agreed were lucky discoveries, getting quite powerful ships early. My last round was big on miscalculation, spreading just thin enough that I had to withdraw from almost all my systems to afford all the actions I'd taken, one less move and I'd possibly have had several more points.

A week from now the first day of NaNoWriMo will be about done and I've started thinking I might be taking part again, after almost completely ignoring it last year. Me not bothering was partly due to one of those I know that takes part spending the month out of the city, and the other I'd most like to see having indicated no interest (I think? memory is poor). Having had three years of failures due to almost never feeling inclined to bother writing was the more significant motivation. This year I'm aware of another friend taking part and I do miss taking part, even with me pretty much never being inclined to show anyone any of what I achieved.
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I seem to be having trouble sleeping in the way I used to almost any day I didn't have work, didn't reach much past eight hours this morning. Maybe I should close the curtains at the top of my bedroom but I don't recall it being an issue until recently, even during summer.

I went back the Wednesday Night Gaming last week, and had a couple of very good games of (Rise of) Augustus, before a much longer than it should have been game of Castles of Burgundy. With the game end being nearly an hour later than I'd have estimated I was home noticeably later than I'd have preferred and had a somewhat unwelcome morning at work the next day. When I'd last been to the supermarket I'd purchased a can of LIFT+ figuring there would likely be a day it could be useful, I hadn't really expected it to be so soon. At some point in the past month or so Pak'n'Save stopped carrying Glucozade it seems, that's been my "energy drink" of choice since I felt inclined to buy any.

Saturday was the annual Community Fun Day in the park up the street from me, and I stuck around for the entire three hours this time. Most of the early portion just walking around to find people I know, lots of the later portion with particular people, including a baby. I don't look my age it seems, a couple of the young adults got engaged very recently and he wasn't present, sitting down by her briefly I got mistaken for him by a person new to the area. Granted, there probably hadn't been any discussion of what he looked like, but I'd have presumed I look significantly older than she does.

Next Monday is Labour Day, and I'll be spending the afternoon playing Eclipse, after actually making the minimal effort to set up such via FB. It would be better if there was a sixth that seemed likely to fit the group that's already organised, she that I would have asked is due to give birth on (or very near) that day.

I like to complain...

2016-Oct-11, Tuesday 05:40 pm
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... it's easier than actually taking steps to fix the "problems" that I see. I've started to make some changes in my behaviour regarding that however, and it seems to have cost me one friend on FaceBook already.

During the weekend I attended the third SAGA Mini-Con for the year, spending less of my time playing board games than I wanted due to a couple of factors, one being other people not having the stamina to stick around on Sunday evening. I also wanted to play different games than some of those that got played but had prepared for that with my laptop having Eclipse on it, getting through an entire game over the course of Sunday. A couple of people I'd have liked to show up didn't and the one person I avoid gaming with was present (briefly), but for the most part I got to play games with people I like spending time with including a couple of people that I hadn't been expecting to see there.

I did four days of work last week, most of it simple enough although a couple of the jobs were more taxing than normal. More than half of my Friday was spent putting things in bags which is always easy, there was a portion of Monday where I had to put stapled paper on the conveyor as magazines were going by, something that always strains my eyes and has once resulted in me leaving due to induced headache.
Having expected to be out later than I was on Sunday and at home for as little of the weekend as I was, I preemptively took yesterday off work and didn't get offered today. Leading to me agreeing to work tomorrow, and likely the rest of the week if I get offered those shifts. Tomorrow night I will be gaming unless I'm even more wiped out than I expect to be and will probably perform poorly in whatever I play.

This coming weekend will be the fifth in a row that I've had plans, although the one just been was the only one that was a full weekend of things. I'm now wondering if I'll be motivated enough to try and organise tabletop Eclipse for Labour weekend, it didn't get played at Mini-Con and I don't think waiting until the 48 Charity Event is a great idea.

(no subject)

2016-Oct-04, Tuesday 11:56 pm
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Two and a half years ago I would have been getting back from SAGA late for an entirely different reason than I was tonight. Walking a friend to the bus stop she'd wait at led to me also getting more hugs than I managed while gaming with her. Tonight on the other hand I stuck around partially to let a committee member know a thing and make a request. (There's also no particular reason to come home as soon as I'm done gaming especially when I'm not working the following day.)

I spent much of my Saturday at the home of a couple I game with less than I'd like to. It ended up being close to seven hours that I was there, with the last half hour or so being conversation instead of games. A conversation that had me admit/confess a couple of things directly that they'd probably had a chance to guess at prior but wouldn't have heard specifically. It's good to have that level of trust with other people, probably far from necessary when talking with most of my friends, but I don't trust easily.

Work picked up a while back and hasn't faded in the interim like prior spikes have led to. I am taking tomorrow off after working yesterday and today, with an expectation for work on Thursday and Friday. If things keep being like they've been of late I'm going to consider taking Wednesdays off as a regular thing again like I was a few years back.
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And didn't walk as much as I'd thought I would be. A couple of friends had a weekend away and I got to go and feed their cat Jarvis, not that I saw him much. Considering the location I asked another friend a week prior if company on the Saturday would be welcome and with a yes arranged to go there instead of home between Saturday feedings. On the Friday night I was unable to see the cat and stuck around to make sure he did come in and eat. During contact with friends I got told it would be okay for me to spend the night on the spare bed and so I didn't head home. Over the course of that afternoon/evening I'd been keeping in contact with the other friend and found out other plans has been made; plans that ended up taking precedence over a visit from me. I didn't actually get all those details until the Saturday morning though, and after feeding the cat again headed back here, getting more exercise than is normal for a Saturday earlier than I'm normally up at the weekend.

I worked the last three days of last week, and was probably more tired at the weekend than I might have otherwise been. (Which likely led to me sleeping earlier and for longer than I otherwise would have on the spare bed.) That and the specific thing I was doing yesterday morning at work led to me turning down the offer of work I had for today. The listing on the board also made it seem I'd be getting an offer for tomorrow, that didn't happen. With it being school holidays this week and the next Mainly Music isn't happening tomorrow and I have nothing to do after I get up. Which means I'll probably end up spending a lot of time playing more Eclipse: New Dawn for the Galaxy. Since getting it about 10 days ago I've spent an average of more than 2 hours a day playing, and even considered taking my laptop to work so I could play during my lunch break. Still haven't managed to win with all six of the Alien races though.

Facebook has shown me a couple of posts over the past couple of days reminding me even more of someone being not around. I miss hugs, smiles, amusing talk. I regret letting things go so long without conversation again. And I regret other friendships fading as well.

What new beginning?

2016-Sep-20, Tuesday 11:18 pm
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It's a fairly common saying that with things ending there are new beginnings.

SAGA has recently had a bit of an upswing in attendance for boardgaming. And I've no interest in playing the games that the newer people are choosing to play.
The past 2 or 3 weeks have seen games like The Resistance getting played; secret roles, social deduction, and hidden teams. Even Codenames, which was played for a couple of hours tonight, isn't something I typically care to play (and I sat out hoping to be free to play something else when others finished whatever). There are a few others that are interested in Agricola, Colosseum, and other games with involved game play, but it seems that most of the group is now likely to be playing simple, social games. My general feeling about going along had been getting less enthused for a while, and only got lower when I found out I'd caused a couple of people to cease attending earlier in the year.
Gaming on Thursday has been more of interest compared to Tuesday for quite a while, due to someone specific that only games with us on Thursdays and she's been missing some weeks due to other plans for a while. With the comparatively lower attendance on Thursdays though it's almost always a single game, which limits (to some extent) what can get played.
Monday nights have also been a little lighter most weeks of late, although with a new flatmate there it seems I'll be able to play some heavier games there. Wednesday nights would likely be the best chance to play the level of game I want to play, apart from the distance issue and my general disinclination to learn new things.

What this all comes down to is that I seem likely to be leaving board gaming as a big thing by the end of the year, and don't seem likely to bother with SAGA next year at all. Having become so much older than most of the group is also part of that, the regulars I've played most things with are closer to my age (a couple of them are older) but nearly everyone new is going to be more than a decade younger than I am.
If I wasn't so damned lazy and unmotivated I'd clear the mess that exists in this flat (almost all mine at the moment) and try to get certain individuals to visit at some convenient point. Actually having people visit me in that way is so counter to my normal life that I don't see it happening though.

Almost busy again

2016-Sep-13, Tuesday 11:58 pm
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In only one of the next four weekends am I not already expecting to do something out of the ordinary for a weekend.
This coming weekend I'm gaming off Colombo street with a couple I haven't seen enough recently due to scheduling conflicts. Not sure what I'll end up playing but even the games I don't much care for are still fun with that group.
The following weekend I'll be going back to feed their cat while they do something somewhere else. Chances are good I'll spend a while reading at least one of their books while I'm letting the cat eat and such. I'm also heading further afield on the Saturday (unless plans change) to spend time with the friend I visited about three months ago. Time gets away from me far more than I'm okay with. The first time I was there I noticed a PS2 and had the thought she might like to play the Buffy the Vampire Slayer game I have.
The second weekend of October is Mini-con III, the first irregular SAGA event I'll have any part of for a nearly three month stretch. I am hoping that certain people show up and I get to play with them. Regardless, it could be a good opportunity to get games of Princes of Florence, Power Grid, and Rococo.

Work hours/offers seem to be keeping at the level they "should" have been earlier in the year, I did get offered Friday last week but felt I'd not really slept enough on top of the extra working, so didn't think it was wise to do the fourth day. Today was simple enough, especially with the shifting between machines as small jobs were finished quickly leading to down time throughout the day. We also finished all the different jobs earlier than expected, before the last thing was ready so many of us left early. I'm taking tomorrow off because it seems likely that I'll get either Thursday or Friday again (or both?) and would rather spend tomorrow morning sleeping in and then surrounded by little children.

Over the past couple of years at least I've not been getting to church much if any before it was halfway done, and normally later than that. This weekend I arrived no more than 15 minutes after the start of the service, and was there well past end time. For about half of that time I was holding a nine month old, or had let someone else hold him briefly.

End of an era

2016-Sep-06, Tuesday 11:38 pm
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Just over 12.5 years ago I did my first day of work at PMP Print. In that span of time I've worked for a temp agency, been hired by PMP itself, been forced back on a (different) temp agencies books. I've seen one particular process have the machine replaced by a seemingly much never machine, then that was replaced by another version of the first machine (and there was at least five relocations over the time frame). Things change and I adjust. The woman that ran my induction on that first day had her last day last week, which I had all of a single days notice of due to not being there so much recently and not socialising. This means that there is one permanent staff member on the morning shift that isn't an operator of some sort according to the White Board of jobs, I'm sure that would have been half a dozen when I started.
Better news I received this afternoon; the woman that has been responsible for organising shifts for the past 18+ months is leaving the temp agency. I'm cautiously hopeful that the newcomer will listen to the shift supervisor when he asks for me specifically. I have had a big improvement in what I'm getting offered just recently though, four days last week (although I perhaps should have also been offered Monday) and I'm not working tomorrow because it seems likely that I'll get Thursday and Friday shifts offered to me.

While at church on Sunday I was informed that a woman had come back to Mainly Music that week after about six years, with a new child, and asked about (or at least mentioned) me. It's odd to think I was helping out that far back, even when I realise that I didn't really help for most of the past two years. I also had someone else arrive at church for the first time I'd seen her for months at least, while I was holding a friends eight month old, and ask if I was the father. Something that happens reasonably often with strangers, especially if I'm playing with one of the daughters of a particular couple, but I don't think someone I've known has asked if I was a father before.


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