December 13, 2007: D&D and Apple Pie

On my way home from work last night I stopped by at Borders on Broadway and picked up the D&D Basic Game Starter Pack and the D&D Player’s Kit at well which gave us an extra set of dice, a solo adventure for Dominica to play through and her own copy of the Player’s Handbook. The book alone is worth the price of the pack (although normally the book is hardcover and this is softcover but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing) plus it came with a set of miniatures. So I thought that they were a good deal as they each had some components that I was interested in getting that covered most of the price and they would be good learning tools for Dominica.

The real reason that I went to Borders was to get the next book in the series that I am reading, “Exile” by R. A. Salvatore, but it turned out to be the only book of the series that they didn’t have. But then I noticed that they did have the “complete series” in a single book which was only barely more expensive that buying the two remaining books alone. So I just grabbed that – “The Dark Elf Trilogy“. The larger book will be harder to carry to read on the train but getting the books that way is much cheaper and I only have to worry about getting them one third as often.

I stopped at the McDonald’s in Newark Penn Station to surprise Dominica with dinner and then walked home. It was so warm this evening that I had to carry my coat everywhere and even then I was far too warm. My brief time outside between locations wasn’t enough to cool me off at all. I even had my sleeves rolled up! And it is December.

We ate dinner while watching Are You Being Served? in our bedroom and then opened up Dominica’s new D&D packs so that she could see the miniatures and the dice and all of the stuff that she got. She was very excited. We stopped watching television to play through the very short solo adventure that came with the Player’s Kit. It was very silly and incredibly short but it was a good learning tool I guess. We are hoping to get to try the starter adventure that comes with the Basic Game soon. It should have good learning tools in it as well including how to use the miniatures in the game and the dungeon tiles.

Dominica went to bed a bit before me. I stayed up reading “Exile” for quite a while.

I am working from home this morning as the weather is supposed to be really awful and when I work from home Oreo is able to stay home from daycare allowing Dominica to only have to drive about half the distance that she normally has to drive. And I don’t have to walk a long way in the sleet too. That would be crappy.

My job for the day involves getting the house clean for the D&D game that will be here tonight. Everyone is attempting to make it over here around six although the weather might make that a bit difficult. If the weather was good Dominica could be here around five forty but six might be pretty ambitious. I am sure that we will order in dinner tonight.

The snow and sleet started in Newark at a quarter after ten in the morning. Driving is not going to be fun for those stuck out in it.

I got all of the dishes done quite early this morning which was quite the accomplishment. With those done and out of the way I could focus on the real cleaning to be done for the rest of the day. Having so many people over to our apartment recently has really made for a regular regimen of cleaning and it shows. There isn’t so much to be done anymore and what is done is more thorough.

At eleven the snow started and it was so dark outside that I had to turn on some lights in the apartment to be able to see properly. It was a serious snow storm. We are expected to get six to eight inches today. Dad is expected to get ten inches back home near Rochester.

Our new matching chair is supposed to be delivered today but we will see what happens with the weather being as it is. It would be awesome to have that in time for the game tonight but that doesn’t seem possible at all as it needs to be brought up and assembled before we can use it and if we don’t get it finished and cleaned up it would just be a big mess in the way until it was and we don’t have very much time to play as it is.

Another day has passed and the software pirates have not contacted me with the address to their secret lair so that I can ship the computer chassis back to them. So it is looking more and more as if I got a free computer (sans software) out of the deal. Too bad the computer is so beat up. But at least it was free. And it appears to work too. Can’t really complain too much I guess.

My afternoon became horribly busy – partially because of people saving stuff until the end of the day and partially because I was left covering for people attempting to drive home in the bad weather and partially because Kinko-FedEx needed me to stand in the store for forty minutes while they boxes up some stuff for me to send out. I had called ahead to make sure that FedEx could handle doing the boxing for me and they said that that was fine. Then I got over there and thought that I could just drop the stuff off, pay and be on my way in five minutes. Nope. Forty minutes of just standing around waiting for them. Argh.

Dominica had a crappy drive home in the sleet and snow. I wrapped up everything that I could at work (more to come later on though) and quickly showered and continued cleaning as fast as I could. We had originally scheduled tonight at six for a D&D group thinking that that would be plenty of time but now it is a major panic to be ready. It was all that I could do to get the house ready and to get myself ready and to keep up with the after-hours work that was pouring in.

Dominica got home just after six and took Oreo out. I had just fed him his dinner and he wanted to go for a walk although not a long one as he does not enjoy this weather at all.

Ramona arrived around six thirty and Kevin and then Chris arrived a little after seven. So we actually had a bit more time than we had planned but ended up needing it as I had not had time to get a character ready for Kevin since we didn’t know until tonight that he was going to be playing.

We ordered in pizza from Nino’s and we all ate just before starting to play. We played more or less from eight until a little after midnight. About halfway through the game Dominica baked us an apple pie to keep everyone happy. We remarked that it doesn’t get much more American than D&D and Apple Pie.

We were all very tired by the end of the game and were ready to get to bed. Everyone has to be at work tomorrow except for Kevin who is just using up his saved up vacation time.

Andy drove to Canada today. Of all days – worst weather of the entire year so far. Took him nine hours to get up to North Bay, Ontario! At least he has GPS now and an Audible account. He has a ton of driving to do in the next week. He is going to Pittsburgh next week and this will be the most driving that he has done in a single week in years, I am sure.

Tomorrow night Dominica and I are driving to Arnold, Maryland for the Nicklin Christmas Party. We won’t be leaving until seven or eight at the earliest so it will be quite late by the time that we finally arrive. At least the weather is supposed to be good tomorrow.

I got caught up on my Project Management class at RIT. Once again, I am taking a “master’s” class that appears to be nothing more than a simple recap of the same class that I took while doing undergrad at SUNY Empire only the undergrad was quite a bit more thorough and expected more of us. I really don’t feel as if I have gained much through this experience so far. Although that is what I had predicted.

The latest Apple Nerd vs. PC Business Guy (The Girl) commercial. What in the world made Apple think that having the kid who played the “supreme Trekkie nerd” from Galaxy Quest as their mascot was a good idea and then have a series of commercials where they try to show “socially inept” as cool? This is a great series of spoof’s on Mac’s horrible advertising campaign of late: Money, Work, Music. You can check out the original material here from Laurie McGuinnes.

Part of Apple’s mistake was hiring Justin Long who is quoted as saying “I’m very, very computer illiterate… I get the worst of both worlds. I look like a geeky hacker, but I don’t know anything about computers.” – Interview with Fred Topel, June 28, 2007. Apple’s message: Mac’s make you look like a geek but not have a clue. Um, that’s not how “geek chic” works. It is important to note that when selecting their spokesperson Apple went for “nerd” (as in ComicCon) rather than “geek” as in LinuxTag. Apple is more aligned with the “dresses up like comic book characters crowd” rather than the “writes amazing business software in their spare time crowd”. Apparently Apple is hip to the jargon of the industry yet. Or assumes that their customers aren’t.

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