As we all know, I’m an opinionated prat, and while I do try to view something from every possible angle before forming an opinion about it, I tend to not waver from it once it’s established. Despite this statement, there are exceptions, and I’ve just come across one recently that slightly negates some recent diatribes of mine when discussing a certain subject with friends. Allow me to explain.
Many of my friends, for quite a few months now, have been going on and on about the glories of Bethesda’s latest “masterpiece”, Skyrim. This is a game that, despite many awful bugs, even some game breaking ones, received plenty of very high scores from reviewers, even a few perfect scores. I’m not gonna sit here and say that this is the main reason it turned me off, but it was a good start.
For a game to be worthy of such insanely high praise, I expect it to be incredibly refined. The kind of game that, even if the odd glitch exists, it’s so minor that it doesn’t affect gameplay or make the game appear ‘buggy’ whatsoever. I personally don’t care how ‘pretty’ a game is, or how much content it has in it (Skyrim has about 800 hrs of playable content), if your shit is really buggy out of the gates, then maybe you should have payed more attention to cleaning up the glitches and less attention to cramming more content into a game with an insane amount already.
Now, apart from this issue, my other problem was that Skyrim’s predecessor, Oblivion, was boring as shit for me. The open world thing is ok for some people, but where it allows freedoms for characters, it also lacks direction, since most of it was me wandering aimlessly around trying to locate the right town and character to talk to in a world that was ridiculously large. This didn’t add to the immersion for me, it just made me bored as fuck. Also, everyone I ended up talking to gave me a goddamn side mission, until I had about 7000 of the fucking things! Then it was a chore just to try and figure out who gave me what, and how long ago that was. Needless to say, I got bored and put it down rather quickly, and from what I’m told, Skyrim didn’t change that part of the game all that much.
Truth be told, there was another gripe of mine, and that was the combat system. I just couldn’t get behind first person sword and magical combat, it just felt so…..wrong….
Around the same time as everyone prattling on about Skyrim, I was told about another game called Kingdoms of Amalur: The Reckoning. The game has characters designed by Todd McFarlane, and world lore/storyline written by none other than R.A.Salvatore. I’m not linking to either of their home pages, because if you don’t know who they are, then you’ve been living under a rock on a different planet for the past 20 years, and have no business reading my blog, 😉 Anyways, this piqued my interest, as did the fact that the combat and gameplay is much more along the lines of God of War than anything else. This, of course, gave me a gamer stiffy, since the God of War series is one of my all-time favorites, and much of the reasoning for my love of it is the awesome combat mechanics. I decided to give it a shot, and downloaded the demo.
The demo for Amalur was more glitchy and buggy than many I’ve played, but still the gameplay was awesome. I was saddened that such potential was wasted on a buggy game, much like Skyrim. I then found out that the demo was done with very old code, by a different dev than the one that made the game, and that the actual game did not suffer from such issues. Reviewers gave mostly favorable reviews of it, and my wonderful wife picked it up for me as a gift.
Please keep in mind that I haven’t really had, or shall I say made, the time to play video games since last summer, when Infamous 2 came out. I rarely play video games since having kids. I played a little bit of Amalur, and then it sat unplayed for a few weeks….until my surgery.
During my recovery, I played hours upon hours of this fucking game, and it wasn’t until hour 20 or so that I noticed a trend….and my folly. I was doing exactly what I criticized Skyrim players for, I was veering far off the storyline path to explore the world. My main quest had about 3 bullet points completed around that time. I had also completed about 18 side quests, each with multiple bullet points. I was all over the place, talking to people and reading books, learning the history of the world and lands I was exploring, and got so wrapped up in it all, that I didn’t give as much of a shit about the main storyline until I ran out of side quests to do. Granted, I got right back into it, but the allure of learning about the other stuff was much too great, and once I started and got hooked, there was no stopping it.
There are, however, a few things I really like about how these quests and such are done. This isn’t a comparison, since I’ve not played Skyrim. Anyone who has a side quest for you will be marked on your map, and in the world with an exclamation point over their head. This makes it easy to control how many of these bloody things you have. All of the points of interest for the active quest are also shown on the map, something older games never did. Keep in mind, most of the RPGs I’ve played were Final Fantasy games, which are similar to this one in that they were mostly linear, while giving the illusion of being open world. Let’s face it, if I were to run straight though to a certain area that I’m up to now, I’d be wearing my ass as a fucking hat. Also, to go from land to land, you must go through caves or passes, and can’t just run in that direction and get there. I think this makes it much easier to navigate the world and keep certain monsters from certain areas. The fast travel is cool too, so I don’t have to keep running everywhere.
The other HUGE thing for me is the combat, as I mentioned before. Switching between weapons and magic in battle is very easy and fluid, and the new abilities and combos that you can unlock really add to the gameplay. I absolutely love running around and fucking people up, since the combat is fast, brutal, and varied. I could literally go on and on about it, and the rest of this game, but this post is ridiculously long already.
So, to wrap things up, I must apologize to those whose balls I busted about Skyrim being only about wandering around, wasting time and side questing. Maybe I should dress up like a black pot for halloween…
I was sent this video awhile ago by a good friend, and thought it was absolutely fucking awesome. Give it a watch, you will not be disappointed if you like my kind of humor. Good shit.
So for those wondering exactly what happened to me over the past week, here’s a slightly-summarized play-by-play of my surgery and the first week of recovery. If you just want the short, short version, doctor said it went well, it hurt like fuck, and painkillers don’t work well on me.
So the idea was for me to stop eating at midnight on Thursday and to have the surgery sometime Friday morning. The surgery would remove the bone spur, and reduce the size of the turbinates in my nose. Afterwards, I’d feel like I had a bad head cold and the pain wouldn’t be too bad.
Now here’s what actually happened. They called me up Thursday and told me that my surgery wouldn’t be until 2 fucking 30 in the afternoon! I was allowed to drink clear liquids until 10am Friday morning, and after that I had to fast. Needless to say, by 2:30 on Friday I was fucking dying! I debated ripping open a vein or artery on my body just to drink the blood. They had me strip to my underwear and get into a hospital gown, complete with grippy socks which had grip on the bottom AND top of the socks. Sexy shit!
They take me into a holding area, where I was kept while “on deck” for surgery. I spoke to my doctor, who told me we were all set for the drilling. I’m assuming he’s a die-hard Republican, since I noticed they wrote Alaska on my face. Anyways, they put in the IV and take me into the O.R.. This was the first time I’ve ever been in an operating room, and I must say it was generally generic. Lights, white, and beeping equipment diligently doing it’s job by beeping at set intervals. The drilling was about to commence. As I was about to pass out from the anesthesia, I’m not sure if the doctor really started unzipping his pants, or if I imagined it…..
Waking up, as anyone who’s undergone anesthesia knows, sucks. I was groggy as fuck, and opening my eyes was a chore. Once I was able to open my eyes and speak, they took me to the recovery room. They said the surgery went well. They then brought me some cookies and a midget can of ginger ale, stating that I could go home once I ate and drank something. This was about the same time that the pain hit me. It literally felt like my nose had been filled with burning hot embers, that were then blown out of my nose. It was a searing, burned, horror. This prompted me to ask the lovely lady for some fucking painkillers. She comes back with Oxycodone, which I took gladly.
I finished my cookies and soda. After a little while, the pain started to subside, and I started feeling really hazy. I needed help standing up, walking, and dressing myself. After that was taken care of, I was taken home. Two of our closest friends were with us, and asked if we wanted them to pick us up dinner. They picked up sushi for themselves, and a large Carvel chocolate shake for me. I figured if I’m gonna be miserable, I might as well eat/drink whatever I want! It was rather glorious, except that by the time I was halfway done with it, I was drifting in and out of sleep. Our friends went home, and I slept on the couch the first night in a drug-induced stupor.
I awoke feeling….ok, actually. The first recovery day, Saturday, was pretty much spent on the couch or bed, watching movies and playing video games. Pain was negligible, and I didn’t need to take any of the Tylenol with Codeine they gave me. I figured I was doing well, and this would be a cake walk.
Day 2 went by in a blur. I wasn’t in much pain, and I slept during most of the day. That night, however, I started getting a sinus headache and felt a little nauseous, so I blew off our standing appointment with Game of Thrones at the house of a couple friend we know who actually have HBO. I took some of the Tylenol with Codeine before bed, and passed out before it even took effect.
The headache grew during Monday, but was still mostly tolerable. I figured if I felt the same, I could attempt going to work. The other thing that started happening more on Monday was that I started getting a little dizzy, since this all apparently fucked up my equilibrium. Nevertheless, it wasn’t so bad that I didn’t think I could drive.
Tuesday morning I still had a headache, but went to work anyway. The headache grew to a crescendo while at work, until I had to leave early because the pain was too much. It was as if there was a demolition crew inside my head just behind my left eye, complete with massive sledgehammers and explosives, and they were trying to bash their way out of my head through my eye socket. I got home, and figured “fuck the Tylenol, I’m goin’ for the Vicodin!”. I tried sleeping, and it was on and off because of the pain. Needless to say, I didn’t get much sleep.
The next day was a true experience in barely tolerable agony. The headache and nausea were so bad, I could do little else but curl up and pray for forgiveness from whoever I wronged to deserve such misery. I’m no stranger to sinus headaches and migraines, after all one of the reasons for getting the surgery was to reduce the frequency of said event. This was far beyond the worst I’ve ever had. I’ve never before had a headache so bad that I came close to vomiting. I was popping Vicodin like fucking Tic Tacs, and all they did was take the tiniest edge off the pain for about 30-45 minutes so I could take a brief nap. It was at this point, Wednesday night, that I called my doctor’s office and begged to be able to take something else to ease the pain. They told me that I was shit outta luck, and had to wait until Thursday morning, when I had my appointment, until I could be cleared for anything else. I was stuck suffering through that night of horrid torment, without pain relief or sleep.
I got out of bed (notice how I didn’t say I ‘woke up’) Thursday morning with a slightly less potent headache. I went to my doctor, and he basically took the metal equivalent of the Mr. Thirsty at the dentist to the inside of my nose and went to town. It was…..odd. He vacuumed out about 80 gallons of bloody mucus, a site whose equal in grossness I’ve only seen in horror flicks, and gave me the all clear to take other pain meds like Excedrin Migraine, the only thing that ever gets rid of those fucking headaches.
Towards the end of my appointment, after I bitched about the pain and he basically told me to have a Coke and a smile and to shut the fuck up, I was informed that this shit would continue, exactly as it felt then, for the next 2 weeks, which is when my next appointment is. After that, I should START to feel better… Well hoo-fuckin-ray for that!!! Meanwhile, my headache right now is pretty negligible, as is the nausea and dizzyness. As long as it stays the way it is right now, I should be ok. If it goes back to how it felt early this week, I may end up dipping into my stash of Oxycodone in an effort to retreat from reality and pretend I didn’t “lose time”. Either way, it outta be an interesting two weeks….
So tomorrow my doctor will break ground in my face, so I will be completely out of commission for a few weeks. Considering that my posts here are few and far between, this probably could have happened and none would be the wiser, but I felt strangely obligated to post this. Or maybe I did it out of boredom while I sit here at work and have been forbidden to access Facebook, a violation of which would result is dismissal…..who knows?!
Yes, you read that correctly. Here’s a little backstory…
WARNING!!! WARNING!!! RANT IMPACT IS IMMINENT!!!!
So they block FB where I work, which is pretty typical for places these days. IT, typically, is somewhat immune to this, though. Not that we’re ‘allowed’ to do it, but our circumvention of the security measures that prevent this type of access is often overlooked willingly.
At my current place of business, they started blocking it because someone was abusing the absolute shit out of it, and they needed to put an end to the loss of productivity. This person has since become a manager.
I saw that the other 3 people in IT here (my boss included) go around the restriction and access FB, so I figured it was the typical situation. This was until the person mentioned above saw my on there and bitched about it in the manager’s meeting. This prompted a visit to the principal’s office.
He asked me if I knew it was blocked. I said yes. He asked if I went there anyway. I said yes. He then said that this would be the last time it would be discussed. Following this incident, at another closed door discussion, I was told that the reason I still don’t have proper access to our environment (after being here 8 fucking months) is because he “doesn’t feel he can trust me”. I asked his reasoning for this. He said (i shit you not), “because I saw you on FB and looking at your cell phone when I passed by”.
Please keep in mind that he NEVER said ANYTHING about:
- Me not learning my job quickly or efficiently,
- Me making any mistakes,
- Me not getting my work done on time, or
- Me not pulling my weight.
Maybe it’s just me, but I would think that these would be great reasons to use for not trusting someone. Also, I probably wouldn’t have as much of an issue being banned from FB if the other IN MY DEPT weren’t STILL GOING THERE!!!!
See you all after my face replacement…..maybe then I’ll be handsome!
(note: my face will unfortunately NOT be altered, and thus improved, by this procedure….)
I’ve been suffering from sinus problems ever since I was in my late teens. It didn’t start out bad, just a touch of hayfever every summer that made me a bit snuffly. However, as time went on, it got progressively worse and worse. Nowadays, I constantly wake up with sinus congestion and a sore throat from the post nasal drip, which is just SUPER AWESOME! I also periodically get sinus migraines, which is basically like having somebody on the inside of my eyebrows with a dull drill trying to bore out through my skull and into the daylight.
I’ve also been prone to chronic sinus infections. I get them so often, that I basically don’t even realize I have them until they get severe, so when I see my doctor because I’m “not feeling well”, he takes a look and runs from the room to put on a hazmat suit. All in all, good times!
It was only recently that I actually went to an ENT for this, since I really hate going to doctors. I was sent to get a CT of my head, and went back in for my consult. The doctor, who is one of the best ENTs in NY apparently, came in and said he had good news and bad news. OK, let’s pause there. To all doctors out there, this is a shitty thing to say to people who are concerned about an aspect of their health and have come in for CT scan results.
Next, he takes me to the computer where their PACS program is and went over my scans with me. I’ll sum it all up for everyone here, since it can get specific. The good news was that they found something that is most likely a huge culprit of my chronic issues. The bad news….I need surgery.
Now, the specifics are as such, I have a large bone spur in my nose, and over-sized turbinates. This means I’ll need a septoplasty and turbinoplasty. They’ll put me under, cut open the lining in my nose, and cut out the 7mm long length of bone that shouldn’t be there. Then they will go in with a laser and reduce the amount of flesh on the turbinates like carving a fucking turkey with a lightsaber
According to my doctors, and pretty much everyone else in the medical field that I’ve spoken to about this, I’m going to be in crazy amounts of sinus pain after the surgery. They gave me Tylenol with Codine for the pain, and said I should start feeling better in a few weeks, with full recovery taking between 6-9 weeks or so on the average. This is exacerbated due to my case being “the most severe” my doctor has ever seen, yet another thing doctors probably shouldn’t say, lol.
Now my main issue isn’t even the fact that I’m SERIOUSLY not looking forward to a weekend of horrible pain, it’s the fact that, according to all sources (my doctor especially), my voice is going to change. As many of you know, I sing in a band. It’s seriously one of my favorite things in the world to do. I won’t be able to sing for a few weeks following the surgery, and after that I will have to partially relearn some singing techniques since the change in my nose and airflow will be so drastic. I know that many people, my vocal coach most of all, have told me that I will most likely sound better afterwards, but I challenge any singer to go into a situation like this and not be nervous.
So there ya go. The drilling of my face will commence this Friday, and I’ll be laid up in bed the entire weekend, and possible a day or two next week. According to my doctor, I won’t look like a prize fighter after a fight, but I sure as hell will feel like one….