Surprise, News, Giveaway

Sitting here in the dying hours of the night, before the morning starts to take me towards my day at work, my blog still being here is a pleasant surprise. For whatever reason I believe that it would have been taken down. I don’t know why I thought that it being inactive would lead to it being deleted but there you have it.

So, onto the news. Lately my mind has been a bit of a mess, ideas swirling around aimlessly, taunting me at regular intervals but careful not to be so regular that I could potentially catch one. I’m hoping this means that the next time I sit down to write something properly (probably the beginnings of a DnD campaign) that it will come easily to me. This blog post is sort of a test run to see if I can still do what I remember doing; opening my mind and letting my fingers just create whatever they catch.

So far, it’s not going badly however it’s not going great. I’ve had to correct far too many typing errors already but I’m not entirely convinced that that’s not just because my desk is a little different from when I last did this.

Outside of my mind things have been interesting. Retrokill has provided a fairly constant source of challenges to deal with and work isn’t making things easier, my workload at the moment, while not necessarily traditionally high, has been difficult to keep up with. I don’t know whether this is as a result of the nature of what I’m having to deal with or whether it’s because of the staff changes we have gone through. It could also be because I’ve been sick over the last couple of weeks.

Whatever the reason though, I’m hoping that it starts to get easier again soon.

Back to Retrokill though, a number of us have started to get into the Arma map Antistasi. It allows us to dynamically attempt to take on the entire island of Altis as rebels. So far, it’s going alright, we’re starting to get enough weaponry that we can each pick what we want and not have to worry about running out and taking outposts and resources is becoming easier. We’re still struggling with holding territory though since our AI seems to be retarded.

On my final note for tonight, Retrokill are running a giveaway of R300 worth of steam gift cards. Head on over to to enter. Good luck 🙂



Once upon a time I considered trying to become an author. When that was verbally beaten out of me by various realists I thought of becoming a blogger…
I’ll admit to my naivete in this matter. I never fully appreciated exactly how much work it was. And the worse thing is that the problem is not a shortage of topics but rather a shortage of drive. I find it difficult to sit down and write as I should.

Over the last couple of months I can at least claim that work has been incredibly stressful and I’m getting more and more exhausted as each day goes by. Couple this with the personal load of a number of secrets that I’ve had to keep and the mental strain alone has been enough to make me feel completely and utterly devastated almost every day.
Over the last two weeks insomnia added itself to the mix as well and led to some rather awkward and unpleasant situations.

Currently I’m no closer to solving the problems that I’ve been having, but at least I’ve found some time to try and engage in something I enjoy.

One day hopefully soon I’ll be able to find the time and the drive to write a full blog post, maybe even including some piece of writing or other, but tonight at least I feel like I’ve made a decent start.


When I first started writing here I was open and didn’t filter anything, I spilled my mind and didn’t care who it hurt or who read it.
As more and more people found out about my blog and I gave them links and so on I found myself becoming more reserved and considering each line far more carefully than was ever the intention.

I was fine with that.

But then a moment came where I started to over-filter myself and so every post became more of a mission that something fun and so I slowed down and practically stopped. I felt like there was a standard to try to keep to.
Right now I’m going to try and abandon that standard. If a post is terrible, it’s terrible, but that doesn’t mean that it’s a failure.
While we were in Cape Town there was a picture that I took. It was a moment in time between deciding to take the picture and the actual picture being taken. That candid picture was, to me, far better than the end result and that’s where my mind has been dwelling while coming up with this post; it was dwelling on the fact that candour can be far more beautiful than anything posed.

Of course this doesn’t mean that every candid moment is good.

I’ve spoken before about my webs, my mind’s way of trying to avoid surprises. Recently the webs have been forming again and, like before, they have been complicating certain things.
One of my favourite things about my current relationship is how open I can be about everything from my own insecurities to what I think of other people.
I shared one of my webs though and it has led to an awkward situation since that particular web was apparently one that involved a subject that was a problem already.
On top of that web being a pain certain others which have formed have led to me being unable to calmly handle certain things. It’s not exactly a problem, it just means that while those things are occurring I have to be a little more aware of my own mind and where exactly it is going. So far I’ve worried without reason but the webs are such that that re-assurance isn’t exactly re-assuring.


A while back I mentioned a piece of writing that I’d considered uploading. Since this post is all about being open and such, here it is too:

ePub, Mobi and PDF

Hope you all enjoy it. 🙂


Right now I’m here because I promised myself I would be. I didn’t have anything to write about, I didn’t have some flash of inspiration. All that happened was I traded with myself and this is what I traded for.

But that doesn’t mean I’m forcing myself to be here.

I’ve wanted to write on here again for a while, but every time I’ve geared myself up or gotten an idea for a topic, it either floats away before I can get to my computer, or otherwise life throws a rock at me that shatters whatever I hold.

I’ll write about two things tonight though.

The first is habitica. I’ve spoken about it before, the app that helps make checklists more interesting. Unfortunately I’ve stopped using it, the reason being that the app is unstable on the network connections I have available and this makes it impossible to actually get anything done without spending five minutes fighting with the app to actually accept that things are done.

The second is shadow of war.

Now, the previous game I absolutely adored. I played it through to 100% twice. Most games I don’t even get that far once so you can understand how I felt about that game.

Dropping myself into number 2 I had heard good things. An expansion on the parts that I enjoyed about the first one as well as the addition of an RPG style loot system and skill tree.

What I’ve found however is rather disappointing. The expansion of the nemesis system was wonderful, it’s a lot of fun to hunt down orcs and figure out how to beat them by interrogating worms and so on.

The second two additions however are actually a negative for me. The RPG equipment addition is no more than an inconvenience. You get new equipment, equip it, complete the side objective for it and level it up. This sounds great in theory. In practice you end up trying to achieve the same pointless side objectives for a small couple of points of extra whatever the weapon gives.

The skill tree is even worse. Things that I took for granted in the first game have been made mutually exclusive to other things that I took for granted. One example is the ability to dominate orcs. In the first game you could dominate an orc as well as gain ‘elf-shot’ (spirit arrows) at the same time.

Now, these are two separate upgrades to the skill of which you can only choose one.

In mid battle this becomes highly frustrating.

Those issues are things that I found that are different from the first game that I don’t particularly like, but the game is meant to be different and I can accept that, and I’m sure I will get used to it and enjoy it once I’ve grinded away for a few more hours.

I can even accept the frustratingly inaccurate aiming of the non-aimed skills (draining and dominating often decides to pick a random orc in the background rather than the broken captain right in front of me and free running is annoying to say the least)

What I won’t likely get over though is the bug that I’ve been experiencing. At random times, often at the worst possible times, my game freezes, displays a random menu screen from half an hour before, then unfreezes a good second or two beyond where it froze. When you’re mid battle this means being hit at least once while you can’t even see what’s going on.

All in all I see myself playing a little bit more, but I believe that I’m probably not going to finish this game as easily as its predecessor.

Nothing personal and something intimate

There are two sides to this post. It’s one that I’ve been thinking about for a while, but at the same time one that’s only come to me now.

The first part is simple. I don’t talk to people. There are a very limited number of people who I can handle at any one time. Currently my limit is three. Beyond that my mind starts to drain, I start to get unstable and I end up becoming snappy and unpleasant. And so I avoid interaction with anyone beyond the three people who I can easily talk to without freaking out.

This is important for me. When my mind does snap (when the snappy and unpleasant doesn’t chase people away) then I can’t even maintain a civil conversation with one person and so I suffer, and so does everyone around me.

Why does this matter?

Because there are a couple of people currently who I haven’t responded to. They pushed too hard and I shut down as a result. I had to reboot and ignore them to be able to maintain my own sanity. Which is why I say it’s nothing personal. It’s not their fault, they are trying to be friendly, but I am incapable of that right now.

Which brings me to the latter subject. I’m starting to struggle. That’s what my reboots have told me. Something in my life is draining me and where I can normally handle short jolts of conversation with certain people, now I can not.

I’m also becoming reliant on a couple of people, and of late those people have been experiencing their own struggles. This has led to them pushing me away, in one case really hard and almost intentionally, in the other politely but definitely intentionally.

Now, I do understand what they’re going through, after all I described the same process above, but to have it happen to me, and now when my mind is already unravelling, it’s not ideal.

So what does this mean for me?

Nothing right now. I’m not going to just back down and give up. But if I don’t manage to turn things around soon, it might mean curling up in a corner, closing myself off to everything and fading for a long, long while.

Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that.


Weakness has been a recurring theme in my thoughts on what to write lately. I’m not sure if it’s such a bad thing.

You see in seeing weakness in yourself you can address it, work at it, strengthen those places that need reinforcement and move forward.

On the other hand though you can look at your weakness and loath yourself because of it, hating that you can’t do it alone or can’t seem to ask for help or don’t seem to be able to progress or whatever is the result of your weakness.

I had a dream a little while ago which I thought at the time, I should definitely write that one out. Now though it’s a faded memory with a couple of scenes that stuck in my mind. Why didn’t I follow through on that thought? Because I didn’t think I’d be able to do it justice. Which is stupid.

If you don’t try, you can’t fail.

If you don’t try, you can’t succeed.

So which is more important? Not failing? Or not succeeding? Most of my life I’ve lived by the first. Lately though I’ve had something that’s been driving me to try the second and for the most part it has gone pretty well.

But the last couple of weeks have been hard on myself and that inspiration. I’ve found myself turning inward and losing myself in my own mind more and more often. And it’s holding me back just as it did before.

So now, despite the fact that that dream of mine is a couple of weeks old, and my mind is still telling me I’m going to mess it up, here it comes.


I wake up with a start, looking around at the shattered remains of my life; the dark, dingy and abandoned building where I’ve been staying since everything fell apart. I sigh deeply, shaking my head before putting my palm to my forehead. It’s been two weeks since I left my flat, leaving almost everything behind. I still can’t tell you why I did it either, nevermind the fact that I’ve been pondering that point ceaselessly for just as long.

Slowly I stand, something making the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end, that feeling of being watched coming on strong. It hasn’t been unfamiliar in this place but this time it’s stronger than usual and somehow, this time I can also feel something else.

There’s a sense of hate in this moment.

I reached down and picked up my pack, keeping my back to one of the walls as I slowly sidle out into the passage. There I start to jog, heading for the entrance, no longer mindful of what I’m putting behind me, everything telling me “It’s time to get out.”

I do exactly that.

Standing on the street outside I look back at the house, my head cocked slightly, trying to figure out what exactly had just happened, checking at the windows and door to see if I can spot anything that could have been giving me the feeling of being watched.

There’s nothing at any of them.

“You’re lucky to be alive.” A gruff voice says beside me. I jump away from the sound, turning in the air and landing in a defensive stance. A man is standing there wearing a wide-brimmed hat and a crimson trench coat made of what looks like leather. He exudes an air of confidence but more than that he makes me feel distinctly inadequate.

“What are you talking about?” I can’t help but ask. He turns to me, curiosity in his dark features. I can’t see his eyes through the shadows of his hat but I can see the stubble across his chin and cheeks, scars causing criss-crossing patterns of places that have no hair.

“With how quickly you got out, I thought you already knew…” he pauses after he speaks, obviously considering something. “It’ll be easier to show you, come with me.” his voice holds a note of command that I feel it would have been nigh impossible to resist even if I wasn’t curious to see what he was talking about.

He leads the way back into the house, walking with absolute confidence. As he crosses the threshold he draws what looks like a crossbow with a ‘water bolt’ loaded into it. I note a piece of string from the tip of the bolt to a reel on the underside of the crossbow.

As I follow him the feeling of unease comes back, that feeling of being watched by something that loathes me.

“It doesn’t like you.” he says conversationally, not turning back to look at me at all, his mind focused on something else. I don’t say anything in return, I have nothing to say.

Suddenly he stops and turns, lifting the crossbow and bringing it to bear, his wrist resting on my shoulder. I hear a twang and then another before the shattering sound of glass and the hissing of acid follow. Quickly now I duck and turn, looking up at a beast that has half of its face melting away. My mind can’t fully comprehend what it’s seeing, the facial make-up of this thing too alien to process.

I watch helplessly as it slowly topples forward, its body falling towards me. As I brace myself for the impact that must surely come the thing turns to mist and disperses around me.

Silence follows in that moment, my heart in my throat.

When I look back to where the man had been I find only air.


Well, oddly enough this isn’t even the part that I remembered. There is another section coming, hopefully soon.

Teaching, learning and yearning

I’m not sure if I’ve mentioned this before but I teach a small jujutsu club. That club is something that I’m passionate about, something that I enjoy immensely.

Being the sensei is one of my most challenging and exciting tasks each week. Not because I lack the knowledge, although I do feel like that is true, and not because I’m not strong, which I also feel is true, but because I lack the confidence to put those things entirely aside and focus on what’s going on.

This means that I often end up stuttering or otherwise losing my focus on the mat. And when we are fighting that shows most.

In training situations, where we are looking at moves, going over techniques, figuring out counters and blocks I feel at home. My mind can immediately pull out something that will work and walk everyone through it. There is no lag time, the thought is just there.

But in a fight (on the mats in this case, I haven’t ever really fought off it) I doubt myself, I tell myself that the other person probably knows better than me, that they will counter whatever I try. And so in a way I freeze, unable to move forward in case I give my opponent the opening they’re looking for. This of course leads to my eventual defeat, especially if my opponent is stronger in one aspect or another of the art.

Which leads to my next point. I have a few students who are from different backgrounds. Now, most of them I can easily move around and outmanoeuvre  and outwit, but there are a couple who learn so quickly that if you get them once, the next time they’ll know that move and put it right back on you.

This is great for me.

My learning was cut short quite abruptly. I feel like I know practically nothing even now and so when one of my students starts to think the same way I do, I feel great. For one thing, my teaching provided a base for them to build from and they’ve built that well. For another it means that I can learn with them. They think differently and so when I might go one way, they’ll go another, and so instead of having one way to counter something, we suddenly have two.

This is my favourite part of running my club, that constant knowledge that as we all progress, we all help each other.


Now onto the last topic, yearning. It’s got nothing to do with the above but tonight I went over to one of my student’s house and we all shared a drink (the entire club.) It was a great experience but while I was there, I ignored my phone.

Unfortunately that meant that I didn’t respond to messages until I got home, and since those messages are my only means of communication with my other, it means I felt very, very cut off, especially since two of my students had their significant others there.

Now that I’m home though and I’ve replied I haven’t gotten a reply back. It’s conceivable that she’s gone to bed, but in the back of my mind I worry, my paranoia kicks in in a big way. What if she’s angry with me? What if something’s happened to her.

I know it’s stupid but those thoughts are the ones I am dealing with right now and I thought it might help to get them out.

Other worlds

I’m no stranger to other worlds. I write about them, I imagine them, I imagine living in them, I help other people see those worlds through my eyes. Some scare me, others merely exist and still more fascinate me.

But something I didn’t expect to happen was for one of them to invade my waking moments without being called.

I had a moment where I was driving along, with a clear destination in mind and the route planned out. Both of those things I have travelled a hundred times and more.

But as I came around the corner to where I needed to be I felt detachment. I looked at the scene and felt like it was not what I was expecting, like although logically it was all the same place, somehow it was different.

The colours were more vivid, the lighting better than it should have been, even with the moon high and bright as it was. And just behind every part of this scene there was something fundamentally different to what it should be.

I pulled into my stop and even there there were familiar sights but once again they were different in some indescribable way. It was only when I walked in and stood staring at the fridges that reality seemed to return. It was a truly surreal moment up until that point.

Unfortunately it’s not too much of a mystery as to why it happened, even though the what is not exactly certain.

Between frustrations at work, pressure at home and stresses in my personal life I’m feeling my depression trying to kick in. I can feel it right on the edge, and in that moment before the world changed I was deep in thought about it and the effect it could have on myself and those who are close to me.

It has a lot of evil potential.

But that moment of difference somehow held it at bay, that moment of wonder where my mind was so thoroughly distracted somehow broke the power of my depression. For now it’s not imminent, although I expect it to be back soon enough.


Tonight has been an interesting night on the back of a hectic week. Tonight I explained my a couple of my deepest issues and their sources, I spoke about how various triggers affected me and found out how many things affected others.
I ate way too much and regretted it for a while but that’s generally what comfort eating does to a person.

Which leads almost perfectly onto the actual subject of this post.
Comfort is one of those things that people can not live without. I’m not talking nice furniture and other ‘physical’ comfort items. I’m talking more about the mental state the people can end up in.
Comfort is absolutely necessary for someone to move forward. If a person is uncomfortable in a situation, they will fight, and squirm and try and find a way out of it.
If they’re comfortable however they’ll be open to moving forward and so are more likely to do so.

To me one of the things that I need before I become comfortable is trust and I think tonight I saw that more than ever.
I trust people implicitly. I believe that they would never intentionally hurt me. It’s naive and stupid but I like thinking that and it allows me to form relationships far quicker than otherwise.
Unfortunately it also means that when the betrayal eventually comes I get caught completely off guard by it and so I get hurt fairly easily.
At this point this has happened all my life. Luckily I was always ‘scary’ enough not to be pulled into one of the more elaborate bullying pranks, but people were quick to find out secrets from me and then exploit them.

Nowadays things are better, I’ve learnt how to turn that exploitation inwards and use it against who ever is trying to work on me. But that’s still not an ideal situation.
Slowly I’m working my way to a middle ground, somewhere where I can happily live and not have to worry about the horribleness of people.

One day I’ll find that space.


This is a difficult post to write for a few reasons. First off, my current physical state. I’m trying to focus but an unable, my head feels like it’s swimming, my hearing is muted somehow and I feel just generally ill. There are any number of things that could be causing it but I suspect no matter what explanations I might find for myself, none of them are actually going to be accurate.

Or at least, none of the ones I would be easily willing to admit to would be accurate.

I think the truth is that my physical state is a side effect of the heading. Tonight has been odd in that it started high and I’ve been dragged low by three people in three different ways.

The first person just doesn’t listen. Their enthusiasm leads them to ignore anything outside of a perfect situation as far as their subject of discussion is concerned. This person and I are working on a project together but it often feels like I’m the retarded sidekick who can’t get anything right. I don’t know if it’s because of the way he views me, or because he doesn’t understand, but he seems to expect me to just be able to do some of the things he can right off the bat even though it took him weeks and months to perfect what he is wanting me to try.

The second person is non-committal, putting no effort into the conversation at all. One word answers, short phrases that actually don’t mean anything and responses that seem completely dismissive are categorising that conversation. It makes me feel like I’m in the way and unwanted. I know it’s not the case but how else am I supposed to read it.

The final person has actually hurt me. We were discussing a topic that I’ll admit was not an entirely pleasant one. This person is someone who I trust to be honest with me, who I trust to talk things through with me.

Instead they snapped at me and then turned to self-deprecation. Although I know that the latter is not meant the way it’s coming across I still feel the passive aggressive side of it. The statements that are my own words twisted and turned back to stab me with.

And the part the drives me to anger even when it’s not on a bad night. I can’t stand when people run away, whether physically or mentally or emotionally. It drives me insane. Face your problems, don’t run. If you run, they’re still there and all it’s doing is tiring you out while the problem grows stronger.

And don’t ever run from me.

Running from me means that I’m the problem. And that kills me. Running from me hurts like nothing else in my life and when that much pain drives itself into me I don’t react well, I react like anyone would when they’re cornered and alone and afraid. Everything coalesces into anger and action.

Tonight I stopped the second one, and I dampened the first. The person who did this to me is too important for me to allow my own stupid instincts to ruin, so I bit back and focused on this so that maybe I can show it to them and they can understand.

I want to break the habit and turn it into something good.
Even if that means dealing with the pain.