2018 In The Can!

I’ll be honest with you, I’m writing this at the end of November. It seems like I always do it this time of year, and then tweak it a little bit each time I want to add something.

The word that could describe my online presence this year is a sobering one: inconsequential. It’s one of the reasons why I haven’t written anything published since April; I’ve not been myself, or someone that at the beginning of 2018 I would call myself. But perhaps that isn’t a bad thing.

I’m a different man at the end of this year than I was at the beginning of it. I got a promotion for starters; took me from three days a week to five with a raise to match (even after tax!). Still in retail, but in a peripheral role as opposed to a central one. I’m always cagey about talking about work here, so I’m sorry for the vagueries.

But more important than that, I found God.

The fact that I even hesitate to write that for fear of ridicule is a reminder of how I used to be in regards to religion, but there it is. I rediscovered Christianity over two decades after walking away from it. I’m not going to change what I write about here; I want to keep that conversation in it’s own area for my sanity as well the perceived freedom. I’m sure I will crosspost or fold the two together eventually, but one step at a time.

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Technological Wanderlust

I love technology. I think by this point if anyone has read anything other than a surface-level skim here they already know that. I love trying new things in tech, trying to repurpose a piece of kit to get new life out of it. Before I was in college I’d go to the nearest scrapyard and buy a few broken PC towers, work out what was wrong with them, fix them and sell them on, minus the donor for whatever parts there were.

I’ve undetaken many such projects. “RasPrint” was making a CUPS server with an RPi Zero for a decade-old printer to add features. It meant spending £20 to get Google Print compatability without throwing away a perfectly good printer. “PiFi” used another RPi machine as a web-enabled, phone controllable Hi-Fi before Google Home or Amazon Echo existed. Then there were others like “FrankenNAS”, turning my EeePC into a NAS when it wasn’t useful as a laptop, before eventually gutting the whole thing and putting it on a shoebox to aid with cooling after removing the fan.

Each of these things were opportunities at the time. They were also relatively inexpensive and were chances to learn (mostly about linux) while making something cool or useful, or both if I was lucky. As I have become more ambitious with my projects, so have the costs involved. This one is a doozy; it would be a labour of love moreso than a simple project, not to mention probably taking most of the year to afford and build.

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Y U STOP WRITING?!

It’s been about three months since I last wrote anything on here publicly. While I do have some things written in Draft form, I either decided they weren’t worth investing any more time in, or they weren’t up to whatever I consider a standard. Whether that is a good or bad thing is up to the people that read(!)

My point is that there are reasons why I stop. I used to write entries twice a week when I was younger, and we’re not talking about LiveJournal or tumblr-esque diatribes that show very little insight on anything but the minutia of one’s day-to-day. It was about serious stuff, and I wrote for several sites as well, all of them gaming enthusiast press sites. I do miss those times, but at the same time I am glad they are behind me.

But more than that, this is me trying to explain my absences in as succinct a manner as I can. If a level of introspection doesn’t interest you, then by all means click elsewhere!

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My Fave Five for 2018!

If you’re cringing at the title, I make no apologies. “5 Games I’m looking forward to in 2018” doesn’t have nearly as much a ring to it, plus it’s a wrestling meme that is out of date and needs to be brought back.

I didn’t actually buy a lot of new games last year. Outside of .hack//G.U. Last Recode which in itself is a remake (albeit of a 15 year old game), I only bought Foxhole, Conan: Exiles, and the ill-fated Mirage: Arcane Warfare. Everything else either consisted of sale purchases, or currency/DLC. Two of those were games to play with my friends, and while I liked the experience, I would never have played them without that group.

So looking onward to 2018, I’m genuinely looking forward to a selection of titles coming out. It’s a little odd being even slightly plugged into the industry anymore; way back when (we’re talking almost a decade ago) I was fully immersed in videogames as they were my only outlet, and I contributed to the news side of it for nearly three years. Didn’t get much of anywhere (my ego, raw as it was, saw to that) but it was an experience worth it’s time nonetheless.

Alas I digress. Off we go.

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And So Ends 2017…

…I’m usually fashionably late for these. My job usually doubles the workload during the festive time, so I always end up spending the last few days winding down, and spending time with a controller in my hand as opposed to a keyboard. This year’s end and the first few days of the new year have been particularly taxing, but that’s for another time and a different circumstance; I’m OK. I’m going to have to ask Dad to wear a mask when he’s ill and I’m around next time (joke!), but I’m OK. Just a rough throat, and difficulties speaking above a rasp.

In 2017 I had been trying to undo the damage that I caused the past couple of years since moving out of my parents place. I became insular, and suffered because of it. Put some weight on, let my demons begin to get the better of me (given that I haven’t been on anti-depressants for more than a year), and had neighbour issues that at one point had me feeling like moving out of my current flat and moving back into my old block since one had opened again.

But on the other side of the ledger I’d started rolling back some of those problem behaviours, and my neighbours are no longer there; though they did try to do a metaphorical comeback tour, so to speak. Right now the place is vacant, and from all accounts, heavily damaged.

Let’s take a moment to look at the resolutions I set in 2017, and compare to where I am now.
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