My Weekend!

As I mentioned before, I was in for quite a weekend, and I was not disappointed.

We attended Video Games Live at the Ralston Arena in Ralston Nebraska, just outside of Omaha.  The show started at 8pm, but the doors opened at 6pm for the activities.  These included signing up for the costume contest (there were some good and not so good ones there) as well as competing in the Guitar Hero contest to win the opportunity to play the game live onstage with the band.  While I’m fairly good at GH, I did not attempt the competition as I have not broken my shell as of yet.  I was very tempted to try it, even though I knew I was not good enough to win.  They also had the t-shirt/DVD vendor set up as well, although they were not expecting any old and fat gamers as the shirts were only upto a large in size.  I bought the DVD instead.

As the crowd waited to enter the concourse at 7:30, I walked around a bit to take in all the glory that is gamer nerds.  As I mentioned before, some wore costumes, but not many.  Most were dressed as geeks.  I regret not wearing one of my many game related t-shirts as I almost felt overdressed and didn’t feel like I belonged with this crowd of mostly twenty-somethings.  Admittedly, I was in a t-shirt and shorts, but it doesn’t take much for this socially inept geek to feel shut out of a crowd.

The wife was taking a few pictures and trying to post them to Facebook, but was having little luck with connecting.  Four thousand nerds all in one place tends to eat up the bandwidth pretty quickly.  They eventually opened the doors and we filed in like so much cattle to get to our seats.  The wife had really came through in this regard, we had amazing seats fairly close to the stage and centered on the stage.  I could not have picked better seats, and the bonus to it all was that our row was fairly empty so we were able to spread out a bit with our only neighbors.  No sitting on stranger’s laps here!

The show ran for about three hours of pure, unfiltered nostalgia.  I’m always one to be moved by a live performance, especially a symphony, but to have them playing the soundtrack to my childhood made it even more moving for me.  I would get chills with the first few notes of piece from a favorite game.  Pokemon got more of a reaction from me than I would have thought before, but Mario, Skyrim, Castelvania, these all send chills down my body and a yell out my mouth.  The most moving pieces for me were easily Legend of Zelda, Final Fantasy VII (“One Wing Angel”), and Chrono Trigger.  The first and last nearly brought me to tears, and the FF one is just a powerful bit of music.  Even the wife got excited when she would actually recognize a game.  I’m sure I heard a bit of a squeal when the music from World of Warcraft began.

The one and only complaint I had was the light display.  It was very neat and looked great, but part of the show was watching the video they put together to go along with the music and the lights were often aimed across the screen.  The light would hit the fog wafting from the stage and all but obscure the screen.  I understand that the big part of the show was the music, but still.  Along with lighting were the spotlights that would move out across the crowd, these were very blinding and uncomfortable.

I can acknowledge that this could simply be a sign of getting older.  More evidence of this came when I realized that I could have done without the fun interruptions and would have preferred they just play more song.  Tommy Tallarico, the creator and host of VGL, mentioned that they have over 250 pieces arranged to play, but can only get to about 18 in a show.  It is only natural that some of the ones I would have liked to hear (“Lament of the Highborne”, Civ 4) were not played and some I didn’t care to hear (Metal Gear Solid) were played.  I guess thats always the way it is with any concert.  Thankfully, they did finish in the manner I thought to be nearly obligatory, they played “Still Alive” from Portal.  I would have been a bit let down had they not played it.

Overall, the experience was amazing.  It was very emotional to see my entire life played out in front of me while an orchestra played along and a choir sang along.  I should be riding this high for a while barring any major disasters.  If you ever get a chance to go, don’t pass it up.  At least buy the DVD or album, you would not regret it.  Unless you don’t like video games and their music, which makes me wonder why you are reading this at all.

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The Ups and Downs of Fatherhood

I’m expecting to have a great weekend, a really great weekend. Tonight the wife and I are going to a concert and tomorrow we are visiting my mother. I could really use a good weekend after the depressing week that was Father’s Day week.

Father’s Day is always depressing for me, it’s one of the few days of the year I think about my own children. It has been fifteen years since I’ve seen them, and I miss them very much. It’s too late to rekindle a life with them, and when I tried, it did not go well. Then came my wife and her wonderful children.

The day after we got married was Father’s Day, my first in years. I had a new family and children to love a raise as my own. It was just about the happiest day of my life. For the next nine years I’ve done the best job as a father that I could. I’ve made mistakes along the way, no one is perfect, but I believe my kids love me and they are well behaved, good people. I’ve now been a father for longer than not, and it means a lot to me, it is who I am.

This brings me to this year. My daughter, whom I am (or was) very close to, was out of town on Father’s Day at a family reunion. It was sad that she was not here on that day, but also sad because that side of the family has never really accepted me as part of their family. We’ve been married for nine years and not once have I ever been invited to the reunion. He’ll, my daughter’s boyfriend has gone more than me. I haven’t been close to my family, mainly because they all live across the state, but I was a bit of a loner growing up and moved out of state when I turned eighteen. We don’t have family reunions after my grandmothers passed, and I miss it. What made it even worse was that she didn’t call, or text, or even post on Facebook to wish me a happy Father’s Day.

Our anniversary was a few days later, and once again I was disappointed. This time my daughter was here, but we did nothing together as a family. My wife picked out a movie she knew I didn’t want to watch, my son played video games and I tried not to pout all night. We could have played a game together, had a picnic in the park, watched a movie we would all enjoy, really anything as long as we did it as a family. It is possible that the depression of Father’s Day made our anniversary more depressing to me than it should have, but the pain was still there, warranted or not. I’m probably being selfish here, but it seems like they don’t realize that our anniversary isn’t just the day Anne and I got married, but the day we became a family.

Maybe it meant more to me this year than in years past. My daughter moved out a few months ago and I know my son won’t be around for too much longer either. It feels like I’m losing my family all over again. I want the few times we are all together to be special, especially at the end of June. I know that all parents go through this when their children grow up and I’m not alone in my feelings. I know my mom would love to see us more often, and my dad hasn’t seen me in twelve years. This does not lessen the pain and sadness I felt that weekend.

If nothing else, maybe this will help me remember to call my mom on Mother’s Day, to let her know how much I love her and miss her. I love my family so much, and maybe it isn’t so selfish to want to spend those special days together while we still can.

To Anne, Breena, and Mathew: I Love you guys so much.

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One Long Year Later

This has been an interesting year for me, one of the most chaotic mentally and emotionally.  I’ve tried to basically remake reality in a way I was better able to cope with, but this simply did not work.  As I’ve said before, King Wigglebottom is dead.  That alternate reality did nothing for the chaos that is my mind.  I would be crushed by the harshness of reality even more so for my attempt to ignore it.  So I must say goodbye to the good King.

I’ve also come to the realization that I’ve pretty much said all that I have to say about my illness.  The only real change has been just recently.  I’ve switched to a daytime schedule (well, trying to) and since I’ve quit staying up all night, alone with my thoughts, I have been happier and more productive than I have been in a really long time.  Sure, I still get bad days, and it seems the littlest things can set me off, but they have not lasted as long and I’ve been able to pull out of most of them.  So, I probably will not talk about my illness much anymore, unless there is some big event or change that I just need to get out.

Starting soon, I will be changing the theme of this page to be more along those things I love in life, the little things that bring me happiness and joy.  Mostly, I will be talking about my board games, my reviews of them and a recount of some of my games, the fun or silly things that would happen during a game.  I’ll talk more about the shows I like and the movies I’ve seen, the people I’ve hung out with and the places I’ve gone.  Maybe this new outlook on life and reality will be good for me, I need to see that there is still good in this world, this reality.

So, for those that have followed me thus far: Thank You.  Knowing there are other people out there with my types of problems and those others who are just willing to listen to me has helped me through the toughest of times.  If you continue to follow me even tho I am changing format, then I owe you an even bigger THANK YOU!!!!  If you have any questions about anything nerdy or game related, please feel free to comment.  I will be adding a particular post for just those types of random questions that are not specifically post related.  

Feel free to hold onto your hats and enjoy the ride, or unsubscribe and go elsewhere, the power to choose is yours, I can’t stop you!

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Where was I? Oh yeah…

For those few that actually read this, I’m sorry I’ve been quiet, but it’s a sure sign that I’m in a good mood. I post more often when I’m down.

This has been such a great week. I started off visiting my mom last Wednesday and stayed till Friday. Saturday was a bit of a downer, a game night would really have been nice, but I knew what was coming up. We did head to the in-laws for a cook out, so I guess it wasn’t all bad. We had planned to go to Kansas City on Sunday to go to Worlds of Fun for my daughter’s birthday, but it was closed, I assume due to bad weather. The storm that hit OK so hard also went through Kansas, though they didn’t get hit nearly as hard.

We did head down Monday morning, after I had slept for a whole hour! It’s ok, I slept the whole way down. We got there about half an hour before it opened and stayed till it closed, 10 hours of roller coasters, bad food, and endless walking. I’ve got a blister on each foot and could barely walk on Tuesday. The weather was still iffy, so they park wasn’t too crowded, but there were several schools there doing senior/end of year trips, so the place was crawling with obnoxious teenagers. Once they left, we had the run of the place. The kids rode one ride, the Boomerang, 8 times in a row, didn’t even have to get off.

My personal favorite was the Prowler, an incredibly fast wooden coaster that will beat the crap out of you, it was a very rough ride and I loved it! My daughter did not like it at all, she cried the whole time. She does NOT prefer wooden coasters to steal ones! My son seemed to like the Timber Wolf, one of the most well known wooden coasters in the world, as he kept wanting to go back again and again. We ended the night on the Patriot one last time. This time, we were in the front row, and let me tell you, it made a huge difference! The Patriot is a suspended steal coaster where your feet are left dangling and the car is held from the top. There were about three times you are inverted, (that means upside down 😉 ), as well as a cork screw and the usual steep plunges. Seeing the ground rushing up at you, or the sky overhead, is a much better experience than staring at the back on the seat in front of you.

Tuesday was spent recovering, I know I felt hungover all day. My stomach still wasn’t fully recovered even this morning! This was the first time all four of us went as a family, and it was so great to be able to share that experience with the family before the kids are out of the nest.

All in all. This has been a great week and helped get me out of my apathetic mood I’ve been in few the last few weeks. I just hope it lasts. Tell me about your favorite family vacation, or just your favorite memory of family togetherness.

I will probably edit this later with pictures later in the week, so check back later!

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My reply

The whole point to my alter ego was to try and look at life in a less depressing way, to try to live life the way I wanted, or at least thought it should be.

Unfortunately, reality simply wouldn’t let me go, it clung on with an iron grip, forcing me to see the world as it really is, not the way I wished it would be.

People ask “What’s the meaning of life?” And the answer is just too simple: to survive. Our bodies are built to be a life support system for our reproductive organs, that’s it. We exist to simply exist and spread our genes so that they continue on forever. We live to raise our children so they may successfully pass our genes on to the next generation, and so on. So everything else in life is simply a distraction, and a pointless one at that.

Any wonder, then, that a man who has no desire to continue to breed nor the ability to raise his genetic children sees no point to any of this? I wanted to live a life where I don’t work a job I hate just to pay it all in child support and bills, to try to find some other meaning to this world and society, but I failed. There is no other point. So, King Wigglebottom is dead, has been for a while now. He was my hope for a future, and that hope is also dead.

I’ve been told I should find something I’m passionate about to occupy my time, but there simply isn’t anything left. The destruction of humanity is not a good hobby, nor is trying to bring down the Christian church, nor is trying to change the government.

I’ve also been told that I need to stop looking at the world as black and white, all or nothing, ones and zeros, and I know I need to, I just can’t figure out how.

Posted in Crazy Thoughts | 1 Comment

The Death of Wigglebottom

I have failed.

This grand experiment at a new life simply failed. I’ve failed my wife, my family, and myself. I simply can’t make myself who I wanted to be, no matter how hard I tried.

My wife resents me. She doesn’t say anything, but I know. I don’t have a job, don’t work around the house, don’t have sex with her, don’t even sleep with her, how could she not. I don’t blame her, in fact I feel sorry for her for having to deal with me. I tried hard to stop fighting the crazy and just see what would happen if I just tried to deal with it, not cover it up all the time. It didn’t go well.

So, from now on I will try to be who she wants me to be. She never talks to me so I’ll have to guess, but I’m sure a nice boring day job would be at the top of the list.

No more thoughts of trying to make my own company, it wasn’t going well anyway. I can try to blame the fact that I can’t do it all alone, but it’s just and excuse. No more crazy ideas of projects that never get built, work that never gets done, dreams that are never realized, hopes that go unfulfilled. All that will now be behind me.

I suppose I should look toward the future with some optimism, but it’s just not in me anymore. I thought life was about enjoying yourself, but it isn’t. It’s simply about doing what you can to survive as long as you can. I had hoped we were more evolved than our animal cousins, but we are not, unless you count our penchant for cruelty to each other.

I assume our life was ok before my little change a year ago, it seems to be what the wife wants to go back to. A simple life of work, eat, sleep, work, eat, sleep. No more wanting more, there simply isn’t anymore. I now understand why people get into sports, or politics, or religious studies; it’s something to kill time until you die, a distraction from how simply pointless this society really is. That many people can’t really like reality tv, can they? I suppose it shows that others live are worse than theirs, or maybe they see something of themselves they don’t even realize. Distractions.

I’m done asking to be entertained, I really have no right. Maybe my family is correct in that I am only bored with life because I have nothing to do. The things I want to do (school) are so far out of reach that I can’t even contemplate that as a distraction. No, a meaningless job for a meaningless existence is the only real choice.

I’m done talking about my illness and how it cripples me. I need to get over it. Everyone thinks is a bunch of BS anyway, so no reason to bring it up any more. I have to force myself to act normal, do things normal people do. King Wigglebottom is dead and I just have to learn how to deal with that.

I’m not sure how to fake a sex drive, but I need to learn that pretty quick.

Anyway, I’m going to do one last crazy thing before I collapse from being up for 20 hours trying to reset to a normal schedule. I’m not sure why I naturally default to a night shift schedule, but it pisses off the wife, so it has to change. Maybe if I ask, she’ll tell me what she wants. I’ve told her my wants and needs, now it’s her turn.

So I say Goodby this one last time. I thank all of you who have followed me these last several months, those who have liked or commented on my posts. I had hopped for more discussion, but, as with all my hopes, it went unfulfilled, but that’s ok. Life is like that, pain and disappointment, the faster you grow numb to it all, the better.

With all my love,
Mike

R.I.P
King Wigglebottom

Posted in Personal | 2 Comments

The Doctor is IN?

Doctor Who

Doctor Who

It has been a while since my last post, sorry about that.  There hasn’t been much going on, still depressed, but not too bad.  Still no job, but I haven’t looked either.  Just playing games and watching TV, trying not to kill anyone.

Speaking of TV, I’ve been a bit disappointed in the current season of Doctor Who.  As we know, he has a new companion, Clara, the Impossible Girl.  She is a big mystery to the Doctor, having died twice now in two different times, one past and one future.  He wants to learn more about her, who is this woman?  We also have the Great Intelligence returning from the Doctor’s past, as well as the ever looming question “Doctor Who?”  They have been building up to this point for a while now.  Don’t forget the 50th anniversary episode coming up, got to be all excited about the return of the 10th Doctor, David Tennant. 

So with all this mystery and goings on, why am I not happy with the new season (Season 7 part 2)?  Well, other than the first episode when the Doctor picks up Clara (“Bells of St. John”), they have all been written by someone other than Moffat, and they have all felt like throwaways, just so much filler until we get to the good stuff.  Nothing leading any of the current stories forward, with the exception of a brief mention in “Hide.”  Don’t get me wrong, the stories and writing have all been fine, just not great.  It does appear that they are reaching back and pulling some baddies from the older series, like the Great Intelligence and the Ice Warriors of Mars.  For a while I was afraid it was going to be a “what forgotten bad guy can we revive next” sort of thing.  Nothing wrong with that, and I have picked up on a few of the inside jokes, but its not what I have come to love about Doctor Who.  It just seems that the lead writer have been too busy with the big episodes coming up that he couldn’t be bothered with the others.  

Again, I still like all the episodes, they just don’t feel great.  I’m not in love with them.  Yes, I know, every series has its ups and downs, even past seasons of Doctor Who have had less than stellar shows, but the last few seasons have really raised the bar for me, and when you only get half a season at a time now, I expect a bit more per episode.   Still, I love the show regardless.

I’m looking forward to the next episode “Heart of the TARDIS.”  From what I’ve seen, it should be very interesting indeed.

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