Stupid People Tricks

My husband and I were heading down the road to go someplace, like we often do, when we noticed a fancy black SUV sort of weaving in the lane, first in front of us, and then beside us. Made us sort of nervous because it looked like one of those gangster cars you see on TV.

Looking over at the driver, however, we both noticed that it was a young female who was texting on her cell phone. She was not even glancing up. That got me to thinking many things, some of which I probably shouldn’t write. 😉

The one thought that came to me most clearly, however, was, “just when you think people have started doing the stupidest things in the world, they come up with something stupider.” I do not understand why there would be ANY need of typing on your cell phone while you were driving.

It’s bad enough that people yack on their cell phones while driving, oblivious to the world around them, but, texting? What could be that important?

First of all, I do not get texting at all. It’s not very easy. You have a tiny keyboard compared to a computer, and a tiny screen. You’re on a telephone. Why not just call someone and talk to them? I mean, I know people who have lengthy texting conversations with other people. Doesn’t that defeat any utilitarian need to text? I thought the point of texting was that you could send a quick note to someone when you didn’t have time to talk.

But, if you’re going to be spending all the time to text back and forth for half an hour or so, why not just talk? Seems easier to me.

Still, I do not judge. I’ve started texting a little bit myself. Most of my texts are things like this: “ok,” “thanks,” and “love u.”

If I want to write a note to someone, I’d rather e-mail them, with a full-sized keyboard and screen. That way, I can really express myself to them instead of pecking out words, some of which are not even words because the keys are so small I hit the wrong ones. Yes, there is autocorrect, but, that isn’t much help, since it often makes strange words out of my typing gibberish.

As for the stupid things people do to endanger themselves, well, am I the only one who keeps getting amazed at just how idiotic and suicidal people can be? First, they fight to have to keep from wearing seat belts in cars and helmets on motorcycles, as if that somehow takes away their freedom. What freedom? Freedom to die? Freedom to have your brains splattered on asphalt? I just don’t get it.

Then, you have people reading the paper, doing nails, making out, and shaving while they drive. Ok. I can understand some of that. People are in a rush and trying to do two things at once. The making out thing, well, that’s just because some folks are insatiable I guess.

And then there is the driving while drunk people. Who really thinks it’s a good idea to get behind the wheel of a car when you can’t even walk?

Now, we have people who want to type novels on their phone to their BFFs about their stupid parents, when they want to hang out, what Jenny was wearing at the mall, and how angry they are about Snookie. Just make a choice. Do you want to type on your phone or do you want to drive? You cannot do both.

It is sad to hear of people dying because they do such idiotic things. But, what’s even worse is that they endanger everyone. Do they really think they’re superhuman? Do they really think they can look at the text on their phone and the road at the same time?

It’s a rant, sure. But, I am less angry than I am simply stupefied. What stupid thing are people going to start doing in their cars next — chopping veggies?

 

Spammers Need Not Apply

I will admit that I haven’t pushed my blog out much to readers. I put it in my signature line on the Kenzer and Company website. I post on Facebook and Twitter when a new post is up, but that’s about it.

So, I don’t expect a huge amount of replies or comments on my stuff. What I hadn’t expected was the large number of spammers who would try to “comment.” I use the term “comment” because it’s obvious they don’t really read any articles because their comments never correspond to what’s really been written.

I get comments on a poem, for instance, that tells me how informative the article was. 😉 Ok. If you can get information from a poem I wrote about the weather or my daughter, then you’re either crazy or brilliant. I certainly haven’t put any “information” in my poetry.

I am glad I’ve set up my blog settings so that I have to approve every comment before it’s published, but, it not only gets irritating, it gets discouraging. I get a LOT of spammers.

I tried to set up words that would block spammers – words that would immediately deny access – but those clever spammers seem to always find a way around that. So, I have given up trying to block them. Actually, although I’m a Christian, and believe in being loving and kind to people, I have had visions of confronting spammers and throttling them. I find spamming so disgusting.

Luckily, I have other things to lift my spirits, so I refuse to let spambots ruin my life. Still, I have to say it here one more time, for emphasis: SPAMMERS, you ARE NOT WELCOME here Thank You.”

Co-GM fail! :)

I promised to write about my experience Co-GMing for my husband Jolly and so I will. I had never tried anything like it before, and, quite frankly, I don’t think I’ll do it again.

It came about, as we prepared for Kenzer and Company’s first gaming convention, my husband decided to use the fantastic terrain piece he had built that has been called by various names. I always think of it as the Mountain of Doom or Mountain of Destruction. 😉 But, my husband hadn’t GMd for awhile, and he was worried that he might have a hard time handling a big table full of people. He said something about wishing he had a co-GM and I volunteered. I should’ve remember the adage that I learned in the Army, ‘never volunteer.’

He said that all I would have to do would be to keep track of the action count for the various monsters he would be pitting against the players, and keep track of the monsters’ hit points. Sounded pretty easy to me.

The only problem is, I have never GMd before. I had always been a player, through and through. My mindset is that of a player. I sympathize with them and felt as if I were somehow betraying “my kind” by helping him. 😉

As the first group of players strategized their approach to the mountain, I couldn’t help myself. A young lady, about 13 or so, said she had some sort of potion of invisibility with three sips in it. She said she could turn invisible and sneak up the mountain and surprise at least one or two of the guards. She thought another person could come with her and help. They discussed this strategy, wondering if they should send two fighters or two thieves. Me, having been listening to the conversation and feeling a loyalty to them that I shouldn’t have been feeling, blurted out, “why don’t you send one of each.” As soon as the words blurted out of my mouth I clamped my hands over my mouth.

My husband turned to me, laughing and saying, “you traitor!” The entire table broke out into laughter.

I found myself worrying about the PCs the entire time. Sure, I tried to help my husband keep track of the monsters and their hit points, but every time the PCs succeeded in defeating one, I would secretly cheer. One guy, who’d played in two other games during the morning, and had been injured into unconsciousness both times, found himself the target of all of the tower’s archers. I was worried because he’d had such a rough time previously, I whispered to my husband as he rolled the dice, “fudge!”

The man survived the assault just fine without any fudging and somehow everyone had fun. But, after all was said and done, my husband said, “you know, I don’t think I really need a co-GM.” 😉

KenzerCon!

Well, we did it – organized and held our first very small gaming convention.

50 fans were invited into the Kenzer and Company offices June 30 to tour the office, play Hackmaster, Aces & Eights, to participate in an auction of cool swag, and shop in the warehouse to get some great deals. My husband and I (assistant GM)(more on that tomorrow) ran around six or so fans through his infamous Mountain of Doom event. Through skillful play and magic, all survived, though some nearly died.

Steve Johansson, Jerimy Grafenstein, Steve Lawrence, Will (don’t know his last name, but screen name is Greylond), George Fields and others ran the crowds through various adventures as well. The result was a good time for everyone, even though the heat conspired to melt us all.

During the auction, much money was raised from bidders both on site and online. Items sold included the first Hackmaster Players’ Handbook printed, a roll of hand-drawn, beautiful Mystara maps, a prototype Aces & Eights GM screen and a German version of Kingdoms of Kalamar.

A group of fans tries to figure out the best way to assault the fortified, rock tower complex inhabited by powerful, savage creatures.

Not only were the events fun and gaming intense, but a lot of fantastic people got to hang out with us. We love rubbing elbows with our fans and throw dice with them.

After most of the attendees left for home, a handful stayed behind, some living nearby, to attend a little after-party at our house July 1.

We grilled some burgers, brats and hot dogs, and played various board games with some really awesome people, including D-Team member Brian Jelke, who is always cool. The last guest left for the airport early this morning (July 2) and we have started to decompress.

It feels as if we were on a high, and now are coming back down to a normal state of life. Events like this give us such encouragement that the products we produce are enjoyable and desirable. While we are tired from all of the preparation and activity, we are also revived and renewed, ready to jump in to more work to provide things our fans and other gamers love. Hack on, everybody! Hack on.