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Tycho / on Mon, Aug 19 2002 at 6:58 am

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Can You Tell Me How To Get

We got to the Necrowombicon just fine, no thanks to Yahoo Maps - which happens to be the topic of today’s strip.  Our directions didn’t even go to the hotel.  They went underwater.

I sort of have con on the brain at the moment, so you will probably get an eyeful of that today and I apologize if you have no interest in it.  It’s our second trip out this month, and I usually have two trips per year, so I still feel out of sorts.  In actual fact, I feel like I fell down the stairs.

I have zero complaints to lodge regarding how things went in Canada.

The first night we were there took place at “Playdium” - one of these big arcade, family amusement center, lounge places.  It costs twenty five Canadian Dollars, which is actually still negative money in American Currency.  The thing is, for the five and a half hours I was there, I played maybe ten games, tops.  Now that I think about it, that’s about what games cost in an arcade anymore, so maybe it’s not all that bad.  I just talked to human beings for that span of time, interrupted on occasion for some King of Fighters 2000.  I also took the next generation of gamers to school at Air Hockey, where they received a beating so brutal I can’t show photos.  I like to think that - one day - they, themselves will so instruct gamers who are now in the womb, developing the critical digits that will grip interfaces we cannot possibly imagine.

I certainly enjoyed the first night, but I brought my computer for a reason.  We found out even with the first 18 machines that we had a serious power issue, and I blame myself.  You see, Fatrick (who set up the con) asked me for months about planning this one, and I just couldn’t think about it then.  So we had to settle for a smaller room that barely had the juice for all the machines we had - in fact, we had as many as six machines on deck for a period, which is unacceptable and also my fault.  Things were supposed to start at nine, but got underway by noonish, thanks to Texx who looked over electrical chart and determined our theoretical machine limits.  Of course, his calculations necessarily included outlets outside the room, in the hallway, and two trips to Canadian Superstores were required to get things done right.  I hope somebody took a picture, because walking up to the room and seeing yellow extension cables slithered out to reach the juice was heartwarming.  Five hundred feet of extension cable later, we were treated to a seventy-two port switch which replaced our grotesque original network, which looked like a bomb had gone off in a CompUSA.  Puck sat in a nest of cable like a determined spider, making sense of our original effort.  There was a large rectangle where the bulk of the machines were situated, but we had three (or four?) round tables with a few machines apiece, which I took to calling “the annex.”  Different games started up from time to time but never reached critical mass - Battlefield 1942 essentially stole the show.  We actually melted through some extension cables and lost power to one bank of machines, which seemed less like a crisis and more like a badge of honor, a sign that were doing things right.  There was a ‘Cube with Super Smash Brothers on there, and the two Halo Xboxes stayed full almost the entire day.  From time to time, I would get up and survey the room with a ridiculous grin.

Roleplayers and Boardgamers rode out the morning’s electrical issues with aplomb - I got a chance to play a game with some people from Radical called DungeonQuest, the objective of which is to kill Chris.  As I mentioned, mid-day two men patched us in to a wireless network near the hotel, which soothed our web-starved throng.  If you see Dircen, Trimangle and I coming for you in Battlefield, just disconnect and save yourselves the humiliation.  Fatrick did such and excellent job of the whole thing, it seems clear that I should just give him the mandate to do it again now.

When we came back through the U.S. border, the guard said that he had to sodomize us.  I mean, he would know, right?

(CW)TB out.

i hit the l shift-o to the quote, and then dollar


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