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October 18th, 2004


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07:05 am
In a perfect world, I would be asleep right now.

In a perfect world, I would not be second, third, fourth, and fifth guessing my moves right now.

This is not a perfect world.

The 20th is my mother's 60th birthday. Two years ago, this would have been a happy occasion. A year ago, we had a bit too much on our minds (that was not far off from putting Pablo to sleep and just a bit before my maternal grandmother's stroke, and after what seemed like it might be recovery, death). Presently, it sees me at odds with her.

I'm concerned about going back home.

I want to say more, but it's far too verbose for an LJ entry. I've begun writing in a file called mylife. I imagine I'll link to it when I've completed a satisfactory amount in the future. Those interested may read it while it progresses from unfinished and unHTMLized. I imagine I'll split it into several pages for ease of reading as well.

I spoke to my oldest sister today. She said that my mother was furious when I emailed her and said I wouldn't be able to come down for financial reasons. She sent me back an email saying, "I'm sorry you can't make it down. LOVE U, MOM"

She has consistently attempted to manipulate me in the past. In her attempts to get me to get a job, she convinced me that she was in financial difficulty. I dropped out of school with a quarter to go in order to look for work and attempt to support myself. I have, by and large, spectacularly failed. I entered into a poor business arrangement with a friend of mine and ended up at odds with him. I had been working for well under my worth as a programmer before being laid off. I'm still frantically looking for work with very little fortune.

I feel as though I can't really trust her. I've felt for some time that all she can be relied upon for is negativity.

I've played with the idea that she's attempting to manipulate me into coming back home. I haven't given up on that idea altogether.

Whatever it is, the lack of aid makes my life much more stressful. I'm continually thankful for my friends and relsqui's parents who have helped me through things. I'm especially thankful for relsqui. Without her, I'm fairly certain that I couldn't handle seeing my family again on Wednesday.

(23 comments | Leave a comment)

Comments:


[User Picture]
From:boymaenad
Date:October 18th, 2004 12:47 pm (UTC)
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I want to say more, but it's far too verbose for an LJ entry.

no such thing. that's what lj-cuts are for.
[User Picture]
From:testing4l
Date:October 19th, 2004 02:34 am (UTC)
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I entertained that thought initially. Then I decided against it because I know that this work is going to be a living work. I'm sure I'm going to add to it. I'd also like to split it into several pages so that people can pick up and leave off.

I'll be done with it for a while soon though. My head will explode if I'm not.
[User Picture]
From:relsqui
Date:October 18th, 2004 02:02 pm (UTC)
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What boymaenad said.

True, it's not unlikely there's going to be trouble. But we'll have the shuttle, which means we're free. The second you want to leave, we leave, whether that's before or after anything happens. We'll have five days to use as we please--we can spend the whole time at your parents' house, or just be there for a day and then come back via Ventura, or we can attempt to smuggle ferrets across the Mexican border and come back in time for class on the run from the cops. Hell, we can stay in LA all the time, enjoy the city, and sleep in the shuttle. You're even less beholden to your parents now than you were last time we were there, and you'll be in at least as much control.

Whatever happens you know I'll be right beside you. Especially with the ferret thing.

Mis padres, tus padres. You are my family waiting to happen and consequently are a part of my bigger family. They might not love you as much as I do for the simple reason that that's not possible, but they like you an awful lot.

Whether or not it's a good thing, you're not in this alone. Get used to that, 'cause it's not changing.

(... Phil, can we get a ferret ...?)
[User Picture]
From:testing4l
Date:October 19th, 2004 07:10 pm (UTC)
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I don't feel any more independent than I was. I do feel broke-er. That factors into things.

I know that worse comes to worst, things'll turn out, but I don't want things to be that bad.

And I know that even at my worst, I'm still the most magnificent bastard alive because I've got you. 8)
[User Picture]
From:relsqui
Date:October 19th, 2004 07:22 pm (UTC)
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And I know that even at my worst, I'm still the most magnificent bastard alive

Mm. Emphasis on the--

--oh, would you look at the time? We'd better get to game night.
From:neurosynner
Date:October 18th, 2004 03:45 pm (UTC)
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we all make poor decisions .. and the sad thing is usually the first round of them can be attributed to someone elses influence..

why not go back to school ? if you have one quarter to go .. get teh Federal $10,000 student loan for a 4th year student and live off it and study to finnish it off ..

do you think that not having a bachelors is holding you back from better pay ? or a job that is worth your salt ? if so then grab it ..

consider moving ? i have no idea where the emphasis of your geekdome lies .. programming .. networking .. linux specialty ?

i dont want you answer to all this .. just musings from inside my head .. as i am in a similar situation .. but i have far more than a quarter to get a degree ..

you are a clever lad .. hell even teh R person ( you know who ) had suffered teh crippeling oppression of a manipulating stereotypical jewish culturally indoctrinated ( not religiously ) mother .. at 51 he barely realises it .. you at 25 have a huge head start ..

i have hope for you ..
for him i do not ..

lol

xoxoxo
[User Picture]
From:testing4l
Date:October 19th, 2004 02:38 am (UTC)
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Thanks for your wishes.

I've considered taking a loan, but I'm very wary about it. My sister struggles under the weight of the loans it took for her to finish up graduate school and I have no desire to end up like that.

Moving might potentially do the trick, but it would also take me away from the friends I've made here and the friends relsqui has here. I've thought about that option as well.
[User Picture]
From:reebamaister
Date:October 18th, 2004 04:05 pm (UTC)
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i cannor honestly say that i can understand what you are going through, but i can understand that it is hard. at a time like this you must remember that there are about a million and seve people out there who are just waiting to help you out in any way, be they friends, advisors, aquaintances, etc. don't even let it occur to yourself that you are alone, because you are not. and try to remember the good things about your family, because although there are some problems, i am pretty sure that there is love at the bottom. and like fizz says, you have the freedom of movement. if things get to difficult you have the every right to leave and cool down.

we all love you. cliche time: everything will turn out fine.
[User Picture]
From:testing4l
Date:October 19th, 2004 02:44 am (UTC)
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I know for certain I'm not alone. That's the farthest thing from my mind.

I suspect that there is love at the bottom of it in a strange, convoluted way. I really believe that my mom wants me to move back home. I think she wants things to be the way they were before I left for college.

I'm glad I took that one way journey. I could be well taken care of by my folks right now, but I'd never have met charming and wonderful people like you and relsqui. My life would be incalculably to the worse if I hadn't.
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]
From:testing4l
Date:October 19th, 2004 02:46 am (UTC)
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It could be worse, but that's not an accomplishment when not doing very well financially.

Wayne misled to me an extent, but that wasn't what I was talking about. I think I handled that well and I certainly don't fault him for being misled by Paradigm.

I can't help you with the ferret. Would a mouse do?
[User Picture]
From:relsqui
Date:October 19th, 2004 04:30 am (UTC)
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Err, Wayne didn't mislead us at all to my knowledge. He just keeps being the bearer of bad news because Paradigm keeps jerking him around.

Anyway, yeah, not what P was referring to. That's just one of many prospective sources of employment that've been pulled out from under him in the past year. ^_^;
[User Picture]
From:sakiroa
Date:October 19th, 2004 10:05 am (UTC)
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You know, I really think that everyone should compose such a file. People often forget their roots, and it's a powerfully humbling thing to remind yourself of them. If there is anything that everyone in the world can relate to, it'll be something about their childhood, I'm sure; the time we were all too innocent to have narrow subjective opinions about the world.

I can certainly relate on the computer aspect of my childhood. I learned BASIC as a kid, too. I remember, when first getting involved at a probable age of 4, parsing my older brother's code and firmly believing every program had to start with the line x = x + 1, despite having little clue what the hell it meant until I was a little older, what with having no experience with algebra. Old sierra games, also, seem to be a common trait, though for me it was the Quest for Glory series.

A+ entry.
[User Picture]
From:testing4l
Date:October 19th, 2004 06:53 pm (UTC)
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I got into Hero's Quest Quest for Glory as well. It came out way after King's Quest though. I think it came out a couple of years after Space Quest I did.

I still have the original Hero's Quest box and everything. After you beat it, the teaser even said "Hero's Quest II: Trial by Fire".

On the shelf above me, I have the collection (which is sadly I-IV. I never had the chance to get V).

I really wish I'd gotten the Space Quest and Leisure Suit Larry collections as well. There's some hope for LSL, fortunately. They're coming out with a new one, even though Sierra isn't the same Sierra we knew, loved, and died-in-unusual-ways-just-to-see-the-message-for. ; )
[User Picture]
From:sakiroa
Date:October 20th, 2004 12:12 am (UTC)
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Reflecting, I can't remember when I played them, actually. The chronology of games ages 2 to 13 seem indistinguishably muddled. I know my first game, which I basically started playing as soon as I was physically able, was California Games (apple ][ version). Next it was the Ultima series, I think, and Sierra was probably quite a bit later, after GQ1 was rereleased into VGA. I never played the original King's Quest or King's Quest 2, only these VGA remakes very recently. They're quality stuff, though. They're making a Quest for Glory 2 VGA which fully supports importing and exporting QfG saved data. Tierra = love.

(You know, I think I'm going to have to make a 'mylife' document as well. I'll give you props.)
[User Picture]
From:testing4l
Date:October 21st, 2004 04:30 pm (UTC)
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I assume by GQ, you mean QFG (Hey, it was the prefix of the saved games). The only other one I can think of that matches is Gold Rush, which wasn't a quest.

While I very much like A-Life and Tom Ray, I'll also assume you mean Sierra. They used to be way cooler. There's something deeply wrong in the world when a company that cool quietly disappears.

What I want to know: Will the QfG remakes have razzle dazzle root beer? suck blue frog? eat green plant? Probably not if they're VGA. =/ I always loved the typing interface (although, when I first played the near-end of Police Quest I, I cursed having to type "put your hands up" quickly).

Epyx is another great company that disappeared. Winter and Summer Games were truly great games.

I'm very pleased to note that all of Epyx's games are available here. I really wish I'd gotten a better response from Sierra when I emailed them. =/
[User Picture]
From:sakiroa
Date:October 21st, 2004 11:18 pm (UTC)
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QfG, yes.

No, I meant Tierra. They're the people who remade KQ1, KQ2, and are currently working on QfG2.

Yes, they are incorporating a point and click interface. I actually prefer the point and click interface more. It's a quicker means to the same ends, really; they're both ways to tell the computer how to physically interact with tangent objects through a limited selection of verbs. The price, indeed, are the cheat codes, but I don't consider it much of a loss. You won't be in any way hindered from interacting with in-game objects. I guess it's a matter of what we grew up to know, though; I, being 6 when QfG1 VGA was released in 92, had my first experiences in the point-and-click interface -- not that I didn't enjoy QfG2 a lot.

Yes, Sierra almost absolutely sucks now. They've turned from a great game-making company into more of a label who occasionally releases half-finished games. It hurts me, too. Sadly, a whole lot of game companies end up this way. I guess any company that releases entertainment media tend to corrupt to the point that they're more interested in corporate ideals than anything else. Le sigh.
[User Picture]
From:testing4l
Date:October 23rd, 2004 02:50 pm (UTC)
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*ahem* Right. Got that now.

The difference between the point and click interface and the typing interface is that typing forces you to actually solve the puzzle. My mom, for example, used to wave the mouse around until the cursor indicated that there was an object she could interact with.

The cheat codes were just an added bonus.

There never was a standard set of verbs for the typing interface. There were certain ones you learned would work, but when it came right down to it, you weren't sure if "undress hot chick" would work or not. If it didn't, you were sure to get one of those amusing ambiguous error messages. Towards the end, they took that a step farther and had certain situations tagged for different errors returned.

The real problem with Sierra was that Ken and Roberta started in Oakhurst. Had they started in a major city, I'm sure they'd still be going today. Even in that small town, they managed to pull in so much talent, both writing and programming. When they got bought and sold a few times over, the beginning of the end was near. It's not really corruption, just misdirection of the new company's goals.

I have minor hope for the new Leisure Suit Larry. With any luck, it won't suck and they'll realize the value of the nostalgia market. It semi-worked for Zork, after all.
[User Picture]
From:sakiroa
Date:October 23rd, 2004 04:23 pm (UTC)
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Well, for, say, Origin, as soon as Garrett didn't hold on to the majority of shares everyone eventually went and booted his ass off the administrative seat and decided to focus their collective efforts on atrocities like Ultima Online. It isn't so much corruption in the sense of individuals as it is a perversion in the ideals of the company as a whole through change of leadership, which is sort of (not really) the same thing.

As for the wiggling your mouse around argument, I agree to a limited degree, but I really don't think it's a much bigger effect than drinking your mourning coffee the vast majority of the time. I never really resorted to it or found it too useful, anyway.
[User Picture]
From:testing4l
Date:October 24th, 2004 04:43 pm (UTC)
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True enough, re:Origin. I desperately want a house like Garriott's =/ Hadn't thought of them in a bit. Mostly because of UO.

[User Picture]
From:sakiroa
Date:October 24th, 2004 07:12 pm (UTC)
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> Garriott

Whoops.
[User Picture]
From:bloodlossgirl
Date:October 20th, 2004 07:48 am (UTC)
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The "mylife" document is indeed an interesting prospect. Just this weekend I thought of several things that could go in it. I sympathize very much, Phil, because I have a manipulative mother. At the root of it, as you say, in a twisted way, is love. My mother always reaches out to control her children when she's out of contro lin her own life. At the moment, she's going through a breast cancer scare, so you can imagine the ways in which she's grasping for me. Like offering to let me move home. And so on, and so forth, ad nauseum. This is not about my story. I just wanted to say that I admire adn appreciate you, and hope that things work out for the best. And as you know, you are lucky to have the support of that fantastic woman. You know the one. Also, apparently, you have many friends just waiting in the wings to support you if you feel you need it.
[User Picture]
From:testing4l
Date:October 21st, 2004 04:49 pm (UTC)
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I'm not sure what immediately inspired the mylife file. I think it was trying to explain the evolution of my relationship with my mother. I don't typically think of my life as being a solitary one, but as I think of more and more to throw in, it's interesting to note how very false that belief is.

I suspect that both of our mothers believe we've lived lives very different from the ones they may have intended for us. All I can think of is that watching us make our own decisions is like sitting in the passenger seat as we learned to drive. Of course, it's quite possible that you don't drive like I drive ; ) They still tell me to slow down around turns.

In either case, I suspect that being a parent is very different from being a child.

For its worth, it turns out that much of my apprehension seems to have been entirely unnecessary. Maybe they really just miss us? Coming up on my birthday, I'm beginning to remember just how short life really is. It seems wrong in some ways to spend so much of it away from people who mean so much to us.
[User Picture]
From:bloodlossgirl
Date:October 22nd, 2004 07:00 am (UTC)
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From what I recall of your driving, I *definitely* don't drive like you drive :P

It seems wrong in some ways to spend so much of it away from people who mean so much to us.

I hear that. One must decide who are the people who mean the most, and how not to spend time away from them. And so forth. Also life's too short to spend too much time being untrue to yourself, trying to fit into the wrong-shaped hole if you're oddly-shaped, and various other things that ought to be self-evident and sometimes aren't until you get whacked in the forehead with perspective.

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