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So... What You Been Up To?

Still hopelessly swamped, I'm having difficulty rounding up the time to get material together, but I'm hopeful that I might be able to get things rolling forward by next week at least. Thought I'd ask what people have been up to while I've been "off the air". What's made you happy in the past few weeks? What's made you angry? What's new with you?

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Disgaea! DS version, admittedly, so voice overs are lacking, but it's still awesome to finally have that. [prinnies, dood!]it's kinda amazing how hard to come by things like that can be.

also the second season of the Ah! My Goddess anime. yay for happy making things. those are the big ones i remember, anyway.

mildly annoying things [most of the things that make me Angery are either temporary and petty, or things like politics, which i can't do a thing about anyway :D] include Japanese carrier fleets killing off more of my divisions in transit than the Japanese, German, Chinese and USSR armies combined managed on land. in five separate wars. [hearts of iron 2. 3 is coming out this year! yay!] and the USA declaring war on the USSR (in the same game) when no one was ready for the fight, least of all the USA itself. [next least ready was probably me, playing as Britain] ... i can spend hours retelling the whole thing, i'm sure you don't want quite that much detail though.

also forum based RPs that stall [in most cases die, but i don't think so this time, due to the fact that i know the people involved] due to people just vanishing. that's annoying too.

honestly, my sense of passed time is pretty bad, so there may have been other stuff. but none of it was particularly significant, i suspect. ph34r my l4m3 l1f3 ^_^

Well, for starters, I moved into a new apartment. This is the first time I've ever lived without any housemates, and so far, it's going as well as I expected. The relative silence is good for my introverted brain.

I was actually just thinking about you the other day, by the way. I'm considering doing another post for this month's Blogs of the Round Table where I try and think about how I'd approach writing a game about my religious beliefs. I think you'd find it interesting, provided I actually get it written down.

Chargone: so, games mostly. :) As for forum based role-playing, it was always hard to maintain attendance for tabletop RPGs "in the flesh", and I imagine the forum-based play is even more prone to desertion.

Deirdra: congratulations on your new home! I realise, reading this, that at no point in my life did I ever live alone. Strange but true.

I would certainly be interested in how you would make a game around the Bahá’í Faith, whether or not you did it for the Round Table.

Best wishes!

Times they are a changin'
Thesis is in the can, so getting close to that finish line. Meanwhile, apart from any unhatched chickens, I have a concrete job offer to work as a post-doc in Finland designing a serious game for raising awareness of energy use! That may appear to not exactly be within my area of expertise, but I'm nothing if not flexible :D

Lets see - anger leads to violence, violence leads to suffering, etc. So I try to keep a lid on that.
Happiness is a warm one. Make of that what you like...

zenBen: Congratulations on finishing your thesis! That must be a great weight off your mind.

[Note: at the request of the commenter, a number of comments were unpublished in this thread]

Scott: I unpublished your comments. I understand your concern about having something like this publicly available, and I respect your decision. But I wanted to say I thought it was brave of you to come out about this, and I'm glad you have decided to take "the bull by the horns". I am no stranger to mental health issues, and personally believe that no-one is - there are no people with perfect mental health, only those who are unaware of their issues. :)

Don't let yourself get dragged down with paranoia, though: those of us with over-active orbito-frontal cortices (all geeks, freaks and game designers!) can easily get tricked into misjudging the likelihood of contingencies.

All the best!

Chris, I read recently that the amygdala plays a large part in the manifestation of OCD. Due to that conflict between the amygdala and the neo cortex, sufferers of OCD are probably exponentially more likely to exaggerate the probability of the worst case scenario..

No wonder I constantly feel like my mind is fighting against itself.

Here's a highly characaturized simplification of what my brain is probably doing...

Amygdala: Dude! You are scared! You should be worried!

Neo cortex: Worried about what?

Amygdala: I don't know... but it's SOMETHING BAD!!

Neo cortex: Are you sure???

Amygdala: Positive. You need to listen to me, or the consequences will be DIRE!!!

Neo cortex: ....

[Eyes see a stimulus]

Cerebral cortex: Wow, that stimulus sure reminds me of [insert something vaguely related but that evokes much more negative emotions]

Neo cortex: Oh shit! :( Maybe that is what I should be worrying about? My friend Amygdala told me I should be worrying about something! Maybe there are meanings to this negative emotion hidden somewhere deep down in my subconscious that I am not even aware about! Amygdala! Amygdala! Is this what I should be worrying about?

Amygdala: Yes, yes it is! Worry! Alarm! DIRE CIRCUMSTANCES!!!

Neo cortex: !!!!!!!!!! PANIC!!! MUST...FIND...SOLUTION!!!

Consciousness: Oh no... Not again!

(Repeat)

:(

Now to work on the solution!

Scott: I like your transcript here. :)

I hadn't thought of the amgydala's role in paranoia before, but it makes a lot of sense - an unearthly alliance between the fear centre and the decision centre (orbito-frontal cortex) would have the effect of creating phantoms to worry about.

It's worth noting that the amygdala "expects" to see a lot of action - in our modern world, we have significantly less to worry about than our ancestors, especially our distant ancestors. Yet still, we worry constantly. Quieting this voice is a challenge for anyone.

In my life, meditation has proved a very effective tool in calming the voice of fear. Good luck finding your own approach!

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