I woke up this morning at my usual time, 06:00, and my body said to me, “Ha ha, Lissa. This is what it feels like to be 85 years old with a cracked back, uncooperative muscles, and swollen feet.”
“Oh, and by the way, all of your mosquito bites shall simultaneously begin to itch, and your index and middle fingers on your left hand shall be swollen and unbending.”
I so almost called Michael to tell him I wasn’t working today, but the thought of calling his house at 06:00 in the morning made me get up anyway.
I spent this week working at my friend’s house, doing more of that digging I mentioned before, and generally managing to get myself mildly injured, chewed on, muddy, wet, and smelly. My arms and ankles are covered in mosquito bites (which hung around in swarms in the warm, moist air in which we worked), including a beautifully disgusting bruise that is covered with three or four mosquito bites. I cannot make a fist with my left hand. My feet have simply decided to give up on me and not feel better at all after rest in order to punish me for standing on them eight hours a day for five days. And my back… ye gods, my back. I daresay even a four-hour massage could not get all the kinks out.
Dear, dear, sweet Hannah. I would thank you for kicking me in the ass about my lack of posting, except that I still have very little to post.
Last Monday and Tuesday, I worked with Michael again, doing (alas!) more digging. Those times, however, my ever-giggly (and slightly disgusting, in a very guy way) buddy Chris was there. I must say, there are few things more exhausting than trying to stop laughing/giggling while two of your friends are egging each other on. And that’s not counting the ever-present digging. Utterly exhausting. So Tuesday, I brought my MP3 player full of Linkin Park’s Meteora, which helped somewhat, although they supposedly talked about me all day. Hmph.
I spent Wednesday recovering from that physical trauma, discovering a wealth of bruises (in particular, a very nasty bruise on my knee from a shovel handle that gave me something close to a panic attack when I discovered it–with the corner of my bed) and getting the kinks worked out of my back (thank you, heating pad!).
Thursday night (at least, I think it was Thursday, and not Wednesday; ye gods, I need to go to school!) a bunch of mes amis and I got together and ate at The Peaceful Dragon, a vegetarian restaurant of an Oriental slant. You gotta love any place that has “Thai ‘Chicken’ Curry” (with actual quotes around “chicken” on the menu). A lot of the food was actually pretty good, and some (including the “Thai ‘Chicken’ Curry”) was superb. The company, which again consisted of the giggly Chris and his tormenter Michael, among others, was superb. This wonderful dinner was followed by the Sexy Pirate movie for the low price of four dollars. I shall state for the record that sitting in the back of theaters sucks. So many nuances are missed when you can’t count the pores on Johnny Depp’s face. I mean, come on, guys! However, majority rules in group situations. The movie was punctuated with one of my friends’ imitation of Barbosa’s orgasmic facial expressions as he watched Miss Swan eat. Simply hilarious.
Not much new going on… My debate with Cleric turned to the irresolvable debate of choice vs. nature for sexuality (as I suspected it would eventually). I say nature (although you can choose your actions/lifestyle that are based on that nature), he says choice for it all (as in, he chose to be attracted to women and not to men, etc.). It’s an interesting twist, but I suspect the whole debate shall fizzle out for a while. Sorry, dude.
Friday I went to work with Michael; essentially, we dug for eight hours. Actually, there’s no “essentially” about it: we just dug for eight hours with a couple of breaks (and really good peanut butter and jelly sandwiches). It’s interesting how hard and how easy that sounds and is. It’s physically hard, but not mentally difficult or intellectually challenging. But I tend to underestimate how physically challenging work like that will be (and, apparently, the monetary worth of such work). You’re working, and digging, and you hate to even look at a clock (I carefully didn’t bring one), because you just know that, although you started at 07:00 and have been digging hours and have that tightness building up in your back and that throbbing going on in your feet, that it’s only 07:05. Unfortunately, it usually is. And yet, it wasn’t killer, like to the point that I thought I was going to injure something (like myself or Michael) or not being able to finish the day’s work (it didn’t help that Michael kept making me laugh, though, which is quite a tiring act in and of itself). It did leave me just sort of sitting fairly still all day Saturday, though. Well, I stretched a little (or tried to), but the sedentary life was the life for me yesterday. There wasn’t a muscle that didn’t hurt, which gave my parents quite the laugh as I trudged/limped around the apartment; even my thumbs hurt and didn’t want to move. And the mosquitos had three full meals and some snacks from one of my arms.
Michael and I decided to hang out that night, though, ‘cuz it was Friday and… well, ‘cuz it was Friday. Turns out we were really too tired to do anything other than play a game of Star Wars themed-Strate-go (through which I cheated like a bum, laughing giggling hysterically the whole time). For some odd reason, I simply could not convince him to go see the sexy pirate movie… Hmph.
Luckily for me, my mother was game last night. Michael was right: it’s high time I obsessed about something; how else can I live up to my full obsessive personality-type potential? Bru-ha-ha.
I’m just about sick of being examined. Yesterday was my first doctor’s visit in two years, and my first physical in about three years. Contrary to the sage advice of my friend Jenny, I did not have my pap smeared (ew, ew, ew). Rose-Hulman requires a battery of tests, however, including (and this surprised even my doctor), an exercise test, in which the doc measures your resting pulse, then you jog in place for a minute, then your pulse is measured again immediately after, then again two minutes later. But all in all, the exam went well. Apparently, there is nothing to be done about the icky sac of fluid on my knee; it’s been there five years now, and there’s apparently no damage to cartiledge or anything, so it just sits there, more disturbing than painful (unless pressed). Um, yeah. Ew.
What was disturbing about the exam was the height measurement. I had no real idea of how tall I am; I figured I was about 5 feet, 6 inches, maybe even 7 inches. It turns out that I’m 5 feet, 5.5 inches (1.66 m). Now, a half an inch doesn’t sound like much difference, but there’s a big psychological difference between 5 and a half feet and anything less. That makes you short. Damn.
I may be short, but that’s okay, ‘cuz short people kick ass too.
I visited the optometrist today for an eye exam, and to see if I needed new glasses. Turns out only one of my eyes has worsened in prescription, and that’s only a single level. So I used my visit to get a second pair of lenses in my old nifty Jeep frames to take to college as backup. I would seriously hate to get eleven hours away from home, melt my glasses to slag doing some funky chemistry experiment, and be without a pair for the length of time to mail a backup pair from home or find a doctor in Terre Haute that has accepts my insurance, etc., etc. I got out el-cheapo, even though I got all the scratch-resistant stuff and transition lenses on the second pair (shh, don’t tell Dad).
So we’ve been working on Exploit: Zero Day for a couple of years now, but I haven’t talked nearly enough about it here. It’s a web-based cyberthriller puzzle game where you play as a hacktivist, uncovering and battling against oppression and exploitation.
*innocent whistle* Totally not the sort of game I’d want to make or play, no…
It’s been in closed alpha for a while, but we’re ready to offer a prelude season of paid story: “Headless Swarm”. For details on the plotline and how it relates to the continued free alpha access, check out the announcement blog post over at FPG.
I visited uptown Charlotte tonight, amidst the current protests and unrest after Keith Scott’s death. My friend and I had a few tidbits of info on where people were meeting, but nothing concrete, so we wandered along several streets.
In areas where people weren’t protesting, businesses were closed, and the streets were unusually silent for 20:30 on a Friday night. Troops stood in clumps of three on corners, waving or saying hello when you passed them. The occasional humvee or police SUV drove by.
Things were more lively at the Omni Hotel, where folks had covered the sidewalk in chalk. There were lots of media there: it was clearly an “allowed”, acceptable, media-consumable gathering. I’d maybe characterize it as a space for quieter expression of grief, although it was criticized by another gathering as essentially being for the white people. The writings were names of people killed and sayings that many of us are familiar with: “hands up don’t shoot”, “when will we have justice?”, etc. Religious figures were around, praying with people.
Further down Trade St., past the bus station, a group had gathered in front of some government building. My friend and I stayed there for a while. They were chanting “I am my brother’s’ keeper!” and folks were stepping up to share their perspectives. Four National Guards and a cop stood between the crowd and the building (with the aid of crowd control barriers), utterly stoic when the crowd shouted questions at them.
Folks probably know that I make video games as part of Future Proof Games, but maybe not what we’re doing at the moment. Many, many (many) years ago, Gregory made “(I Fell in Love With) The Majesty of Colors”, a very sweet Flash game about balloons and drowning.
As the site stats geek for FPG, I can tell you “Majesty” remains pretty damned popular. (Hell, it just got linked by Buzzfeed a few days ago.) It’s an evocative game that continues to appeal to folks wanting to explore the soft feelings of a big, weird, sessile alien. Problem is, Flash is finally actually dying — no phone/tablet can run it, and some browser configurations require user action before it’ll run Flash.
So we’re bringing “Majesty” to modern devices: Android, iOS, and Windows/OSX/Linux. And holy crap, this game feels great on a phone; moving the tentacle with your finger just feels real in a way that the tiny, mouse-controlled Flash version doesn’t. I’m excited to test it on tablets.
One of the first pictures taken of my newly-dyed locs.
I did it! I’ve had locs twice now, for a total of almost five years, and each time I’ve gone, “I should be bold and dye my hair!”
But it’s very permanent, especially since my natural hair color likely needs to be lightened for color to show much. Plus, lightening hair can be damaging. Last thing I want is to have my locs falling out. I’ve literally spent years growing these things; I’m not ashamed to say I’m a little attached to them, even if I don’t name them or count them.
But finally, with the aid of recommendations from friends and family on a beautician, I got my hair did.
Ossuary—Future Proof’s first commercial game release—is part of the Steam Summer Sale and will be 25% off until July 4. If you haven’t had a chance to play yet, it’s only $7.50 (USD). If you’re on the fence, the demo, “The Hodge-Podge Transformer,” is also on Steam.
It’s been on Steam for a year and a month now, and it’s been a fascinating experience. After watching a few Let’s Plays of Ossuary and “Hodge-Podge,” we released an update in December to improve the tutorial experience and solve some colorblindness issues.
Our current work in progress is Exploit: Zero Day, a cyberthriller where you roleplay a hacktivist by making and solving puzzles. It’s pretty cool, and our alpha players are making really friggin’ awesome puzzles and stories. If you want in, hop on the monthly mailing list and you’ll get a key in the next newsletter.
After coffee with a yogi friend, I was inspired to start climbing back on the yoga horse. Most yoga studios in my area only have Saturday morning classes, so I had very few options for something in the afternoon.
Whatever. I was feeling brave. I signed up for an all-levels Vinyasa hot class at a studio I’d never been to. Ninety minutes.