mad

(no subject)

Apparently, I only ever write in this journal to air out my depressions. I'm an emo looser now, and I only have to dye my hair to make it official.

I'm going through with this post anyway. Too much momentum to stop here.

So, here’s the story. This quarter’s been really hard at school. No big deal, normally, but this time I’m going to fail three of my five classes. I haven’t actually failed a class yet. Been close, but I haven’t failed. I still have to attend those classes until next week when the quarter ends, even though I know there is nothing I can do to pull these classes out. It’s also too late to withdraw, and when I attempted to withdraw after mid-term exams, I was asked to stick with it and try to finish anyway.

So, big stress, even for me. Nothing new, I can just grin and bear it and get through and start over next quarter. We have a three week break between terms this time around, so I can relax, clear my head and just plough in again next quarter.

Most of the time, this kind of thing wouldn’t faze me too much. Something happened that changed that. Oddly, I might have to blame anime.

So here’s the real problem. I know I could have finished this quarter and pass all of my classes, even after mid-terms when I missed two classes because of migraines. (Also, to add to the stress, I’ve been having frequent and intense migraines.) I know I could have handled the course load if I had a girlfriend.

I know it sounds corny as hell, but there it is. Something about a relationship, even one on the rocks, makes life easier to handle. Living for someone else and knowing that they are living for you helps sort of redistribute the load. I remember the feelings from my last couple of relationships, and I’ve been re-examining them a lot lately.

By the way, this is going to be long.

My first real girlfriend approached me first. She asked me out. I was 23, and I had never dated through high school, so I didn’t actually understand that, “would you like to hang out sometime,” wasn’t an invitation to hang out. I figured it out after she threw herself at me and asked me point blank why I wasn’t trying to kiss her. Well, being the good Mormon boy I am, I was totally naïve about what was going on, but I also know that I had boundaries and limits that frightened me. Kissing was not one of those limits, so I learned how to kiss for the first time when I was 23.

How pathetic is that?

She dumped me when she finally figured out that I wouldn’t have sex with her. I told her that it wasn’t because of her, I just have standards and I won’t participate in pre-marital sex. I still haven’t.

My next girlfriend sort of happened mutually. We met through mutual friends who were dating each other and they had the simultaneous idea to set us up. After bugging my friend to get her number from his girlfriend (it was a long distance relationship and most of the communication was via instant messaging) I found out that she had been doing the same thing. So we more or less hooked up. It was great, too. She was smart, beautiful and a talented actress (should have been a first clue) who shared my odd sense of humor. I was really in love. I’m still convinced of that. She was also really in love, but it wasn’t with me. She was in love with her ex boyfriend, and though I looked like him on a few ways. I remember now how often she compared me to him and that she never said my name when we were making out. She never said any names, don’t get me wrong. She just pointedly never said my name.

She eventually stopped calling me, and I later found out that she had reconnected with her old boyfriend for a few weeks until he cut her loose again. When she called me after five weeks of no phone calls or e-mail, I basically told her that I wasn’t willing to be half of a couple when the other person is never there. If she had ever tried to call me after that, I would have forgiven her in a heartbeat. She never called back.

So, I remember the feelings of being in love. Seven years ago. I remember being a part of a couple, and I miss it so much. Even though I can’t say I miss my old girlfriends (nothing bitter, I just don’t think about them) I can’t say I don’t miss the feelings. The problem I have now is that I’m not interested in anyone.

I attend a congregation organized with all singles, and the ratio is something around 3:2 girls to guys. It’s not like I have slim pickings here, they are beautiful ladies, they share my standards (after my first girlfriend, that has been one of my biggest fears in a relationship) many of them are educated and in professional careers, and most of them are in my age-range. But I don’t have any friends at church.

I should clarify that. Friend = people you hang out with who have a genuine interest in your well being. I don’t have any friends right now. I’m not being emo over here, I’m just stating a fact that I’m fine with. I’ve lived without friends for years. It makes things simpler when I move. It’s probably a personality flaw of mine, but I also tend to break off communication with old friends when I do move. I’m just that screwed up.

Anyway, I don’t have the normal group of guy-friends that a single dood like me should have, so naturally I also don’t have any chick friends either. I’ve talked at length before about how little I am attracted to physical beauty (not that it hurts, cause it don’t) but rather how much I get attracted to people because of who they are first. I know, I sound like I should be bi-sexual, but that thought’s never even crossed my mind so I’m probably not.

My lack of friends at church and my lack of friends at school leaves me with all the free time in the world to contemplate how lonely I can get sometimes. That is not a big deal, as I’ve said. I’m used to it. I don’t dwell, I’m not the type.

Still school has been unusually hard this quarter.

Then I decided to watch some anime while doing homework. Gunslinger Girls. Oh, my, word. Has there ever been anything so depressing? I’ve certainly never seen anything worse than that. And the running theme? “I’ve got nothing to worry about as long as I have that one person to love.” Great, so it’s depressing and it reminds me that I don’t even have someone to love.

I watched Elfin Lied. Don’t watch that alone. Unless you really don’t want to be seen crying. You will need a hug afterward. I got no hug.

I watched Saikano. I can’t possibly say how depressing that was for me because there aren’t any words that powerful. At least, none that I’ve ever heard.

Shows never affect me. Ever. But suddenly I was faced with the glaring realization, after my school quarter had already fallen apart beyond recovery, that I don’t have anyone to share my sorrows, stresses, joys. I’ve got no one cheering for me. (Yeah, my parents, but you all know what I mean) I never dated in high school because I was home schooled. I never had anyone I looked forward to seeing every day, and I never had anyone looking forward to seeing me every day. After a decade and a half, nothing’s changed.

Introspection time:

Everyone has a mask. It’s the metaphorical face you put on to deal with the unknown. I always thought I had overcome my high school shyness, but I’ve realized that I built up a mask so thick, even I can’t find me sometimes. I’m goofy enough to scare off most people from getting to know me. I’m scary enough to keep “friends” from wanting to get too close. Nobody I know believes me when I tell them I’m shy. They think it’s just me being weird.

So, in the end, I’ve made a perfect environment to make sure that no one can touch me emotionally. And now the only thing I want is to curl up in a corner and cry. It’s just that now I can’t think of why I want to cry.

I entered puberty late. I hardly ever tell people that. I was a head and a half shorter than everyone I know al thorough my high school years. Even though I’m 5’9” (a respectable height, if not actually tall) I still think of myself as shorter than everyone else. I view myself that way, and I’ve never figured out why. I used to cry a lot, mostly out of frustration regarding girls. I can’t bring myself to cry anymore. I just feel numb.

And that’s where I’m at now. I’m so numb I can’t actually claim to be depressed. Still, I haven’t eaten in two days because I’m just not hungry, and I haven’t really slept in four because I don’t feel tired yet. Yesterday one of my teachers pulled me aside during a break in class to ask me if I needed counseling. Hell if I know. Counceling for what? I’m not neglecting my hygiene, and I never talk to anyone anyway, so I don’t see what she’s so worried about.

Still, those anime shows that show how girls who are infatuated act around guys… I’ve never had that. I’d like it. Even if it’s a girl I don’t like back, it must be nice to have anyone like you in that way.

And that’s the though I keep coming back to. I could try to stop acting all the time. My programmed responses to be a playful jerk to everyone indiscriminately is very effective at being likeable but keeping everyone away far enough that they never get to know me. But when I take it off, I just kind of shut down and switch off. I never have an expression on my face like that. That scares people more.

In the end, I’m left with this weight of frustration that I know I can lighten with a good cry, assuming a had someone to cry with. Someone to cradle my head in her lap and let me weep out my frustrations.

And despite that, I can’t think of a single woman I’d like to date. I can’t think of a single woman I’d like to be with.

In other words, I feel like I wanna cry, but can’t figure out what to cry over! So now I’m just numb.

I’m almost curious how long I can stay like this.
ramsquirrel

Long time back!

Okay, so I swore I'd never be the guy who never posts. Now, I'm that guy.

Anyway, the reason: no internet. Ever. I thought I was getting access a long time ago, but it never happened and so I got stuck internetless. I'm posting from school today, and it looks like I'll be doing that for a while now.

Update: I just finished drawing my first real animation. It's only 8 drawings, but it looks great. I'll get a copy of it from my instructor next week and host it up somewhere. I can't believe how much doing a simple animation makes you feel like an animator. After a year of pursuing this degree, I was starting to feel bogged down, like I was just dragging along again, but now I'm taking 3D Modeling and 2D Cell Animation and I can feel my original excitement coming back.

Maybe not my original excitement; I was never this excited before.

My new work schedule is great. I work in the print center at school, so it's handier than a ball of snot. Today, I worked from noon to 6, when i had 2D Cell Animation until 10 across the hall, then I came back to work and I'll be here until midnight. I work until midnight tomorrow, too. Friday nights are real dead, so I'll be doing homework. I think I'll get on IRC and see if there's anyone on who'll talk to me.

For now, back to plotting. (not the take-over-the-world kind, I just run the plotter here.)
ramsquirrel

(no subject)

Playing DDO last week, I started to worry about being a really big geek. A DnD geek, no less. I mean, I play pen-and-paper enough to notice some of the minor changes and the big ones are glaring. Anyone just getting into DDO without the PnP experience would never notice anything wrong.

Anyway, skipping the gory details, the point is that I think I'm going to work on my campaign realm again. I want to start DMing again, so I need to put a few quests together and flesh out some towns and cities. I still have some dungeons, including one impressive dwarven stronghold with a labyrinth in it. I managed to level up my adventurers three times in that dungeon. That's a good quest. I'm not sure if I'm going to include planes or not, yet, but I'll be working on secret guilds, specific prestige classes and try to reconstruct the "Brain Slap" spell.

I might keep you all posted if anyone cares to keep track.
  • Current Music
    CSI in the background
insidius

DDO: A Solid Review

I just finished my 7-Day Free Trial of DDO: Stormreach. Despite my knee-jerk response I posted a few days ago, I wanted to post a better personal review.

Graphics: still a big beef with me that it does not look at least as good as WoW. I'll give it three and a half out of five points. Just not stunning.

Gameplay: Some learning curve, but easy and straight forward. Navigation is self explanatory, but combat (and magic) take some fiddling with to get. Four out of five points.

Sound: Very static. Some background music but not what I'd call D'n'D music. If not for the DM voice. It'd be a solid two, but I'll give it three out of five.

Plot: There is a plot? Okay, the quests are straight forward and the quest log that continually updates keeps quest goals and optional objectives tracked and clear. Four of five, but I got a clear feeling that there was an overall plot about to surface which would bump it to a solid five. I'm not crazy about the Eberron campaign realm,

Leveling: Now, that's a problem. I ended up playing one character for five of the seven days, and I logged a lot of hours to get a good taste of this game. I reached level two, rank two. You see, each level has four ranks, each rank allowing some minor upgrade to be applied to your character. However, leveling happens very slowly; that might explain the addition of ranking. It just feels so damn slow, and the first couple quests you complete are not optimized to level you up fast. First level is not reached until 6,000 EXP has been reached, an experience level that the Player's Handbook 3.5 clearly has tabled as level 4.

Of course, the current level cut-off is 10 which kind of explain the extension of EXP requirements. I can understand having a level cap, but, really, why 10? Why not 15 or 20? After 20 you encounter Epic rules, but below that it is all cut and dried. Despite claiming that DDO is based on the 3.5 rules, it seems that few of the 3.5 rules are actually used. I’ll give leveling two out of five points.

Is it worth almost $50? Not to me. I’ll look back into it after an update or two, and maybe if the price drops to $30 or so. I think I’ll wait till I have some cash and start playing CoH/CoV again. Untill then, I’ll play Neverwinter Nights all over and wonder why the hell DDO couldn’t have been more like that.
  • Current Music
    The Wall; Pink Floyd
insidius

(no subject)

I just finished my 7-Day Free Trial of DDO: Stormreach. Despite my knee-jerk response I posted a few days ago, I wanted to post a better personal review.

Graphics: still a big beef with me that it does not look at least as good as WoW. I'll give it three and a half out of five points. Just not stunning.

Gameplay: Some learning curve, but easy and straight forward. Navigation is self explanatory, but combat (and magic) take some fiddling with to get. Four out of five points.

Sound: Very static. Some background music but not what I'd call D'n'D music. If not for the DM voice. It'd be a solid two, but I'll give it three out of five.

Plot: There is a plot? Okay, the quests are straight forward and the quest log that continually updates keeps quest goals and optional objectives tracked and clear. Four of five, but I got a clear feeling that there was an overall plot about to surface which would bump it to a solid five. I'm not crazy about the Eberron campaign realm,

Leveling: Now, that's a problem. I ended up playing one character for five of the seven days, and I logged a lot of hours to get a good taste of this game. I reached level two, rank two. You see, each level has four ranks, each rank allowing some minor upgrade to be applied to your character. However, leveling happens very slowly; that might explain the addition of ranking. It just feels so damn slow, and the first couple quests you complete are not optimized to level you up fast. First level is not reached until 6,000 EXP has been reached, an experience level that the Player's Handbook 3.5 clearly has tabled as level 4.

Of course, the current level cut-off is 10 which kind of explain the extension of EXP requirements. I can understand having a level cap, but, really, why 10? Why not 15 or 20? After 20 you encounter Epic rules, but below that it is all cut and dried. Despite claiming that DDO is based on the 3.5 rules, it seems that few of the 3.5 rules are actually used. I’ll give leveling two out of five points.

Is it worth almost $50? Not to me. I’ll look back into it after an update or two, and maybe if the price drops to $30 or so. I think I’ll wait till I have some cash and start playing CoH/CoV again. Untill then, I’ll play Neverwinter Nights all over and wonder why the hell DDO couldn’t have been more like that.
  • Current Music
    The Wall; Pink Floyd
ramsquirrel

The internet is for...

Apparently, the telecommunication people are having a fit over the ability of the internet to completely circumvent their ability to make money. They've come up with a plan. From now on, you ISP cold decide what content you browse, blocking or limiting access to web sites that don't pay them. In other words; they will control the flow of information and fundamentally change the way the internet operates in this country. Currently, Congress is being heavily lobbied to pas bills such that allow this sort of "user rape" to happen.

Look, read, and take this seriously. Forward it around as much as possible. Even if you are not in the USA, this could eventually spread out and affect you as well.

Linkage: http://www.savetheinternet.com/
There's a petition there.
  • Current Mood
    cynical angry eyes
ramsquirrel

This deserves no title.

Anyone else playing the D&D Online 7 Day Free Trial?

I meant that to suggest that I am in fact playing it. In the last three days I've played approximately twenty hours. Despite the heavy time put into it, I've advanced my Dwarf Fighter half way to level 2. I don't feel it is necessary to catalog all the shortcomings I'm finding in this MMO.

I am going to mention that it has all the playability and appearance of a fresh-to-beta release. Hell, I have to turn off most of the detail and effects just to keep the thing from lagging, but that even goes to pot if I get to close to water. They've invested polygonal detail in all the wrong places at the sacrifice of decent looking characters. Character gen is a joke (but I've been playing table-top again since January so I'm feeling gypped in a lot of areas); the hair looks like paper, there are three facial "details" in the form of two scars and a pair of painted-on glasses unless you're a dwarf then you get to choose an eye-patch, color selection is frustrating and not nearly diverse enough. In short, there are about twelve people running around. And they change a lot. But, I digress; this is looking like a relating of shortcomings like I promised not to do.

Lag is a problem that should not occur. With the recent successes of MMOs like WoW and CoH/CoV it seems ridiculous that a game with all the graphical intensity of Elder Scrolls; Morrowind should lag. The specular effects, map textures and character details should not have such a strain on my video card as to cause my system to freeze momentarily as often as it does. I have to then assume it is server problems that should have been hashed out in Beta.

It is getting frustrating to play. I’m not completely sure I’m going to claim my next four full days of play, but I’m MMO-less right now since I had to cancel CoH.

I might give a full rant on what’s wrong with D&D Online this weekend after my regular game. Honestly though. They should have been able to find somebody who knew better!
kitten

Project Whore.

Alright. Shiokazecon. I understand conventions, I've even contemplated atending a few. This one's for Anime. I like anime. I sometimes WATCH anime. I have never once ion my life even entertained the traces of a thought that sound something like, "I want to wear that." Maybe a cool trenchcoat, but the entire costume? Isn't that what Hallowen's for?

Anyway, I somehow got roped into making three, yes three, costumes in, no lie, three weeks. The con is next week. I still have to fix Inuyasha's pants, repair Sol Badguy's belt, and take in Naraku's baboon-fur cloak.

Never tall a Cosplayer that you sew.
  • Current Mood
    anxious bamboozled
ramsquirrel

Thoughts...

I was explaining to a pagan friend of mine the major differences between the LDS faith and other Christian religions. One of the things I pointed out was the belief in a slightly different "heaven-hell" relationship. Namely that all that come to Earth have already achieved a measure of salvation, being the faithful souls who followed God during the rebellion in Heaven, and that very few people will be utterly cast entirely out of the presence of God following the Judgment. In other words, most people are going to "heaven". However, not everyone's measure of heaven will be the same; while all will be greater than Earth, not all levels of salvation will be complete making the knowledge the one could have done better in life a sort of burning feeling of failure the will haunt them.

Obviously, this is a simplified explanation of a much deeper and more complex belief. The bottom line is that Mormons believe that people are not going to go to Hell simply because they believe differently. That belief is very different form most other Christian denominational beliefs. Instead, we believe that it is the pursuit of increased faith that will sway final Judgment in your favor. Again, this is a much more simplified explanation from the actual teaching.

Anyway, I told you all that to tell you guys this: I was reading a book on apocathary practices and The New Alchemy. In it, in the very first chapter, it states "There is no good but [true] knowledge, and no evil but ignorance." I just thought that was eloquent and concise and I wanted to share.

Now I'll go back to making costumes. That explanation needs to wait for another update.