Remember all those things
We promised to do together?
I did them without you.
People baked mud into bricks and built
Towering edifices to impress their gods.
They made discoveries unravelling the mysteries of the universe.
People fought against injustice,
They took a stand for what they believed was right,
They banded together to help the weak.
They watched the walls fall.
They stood defiant in front of tanks and refused to move.
People worked on unimaginably complex problems and solved them.
They crossed the void between earth and the moon
To land on that distant world and return.
People felt joy at each other’s achievements,
They felt the warmth of love in their hearts
And they felt the sting of betrayal,
The heat of jealousy and the bile of rage.
People meant something once.
People accomplished so much
But none of it mattered.
None of it mattered.
None of it.
Makes my heart pound, as if
To remind itself
Met a homeless drunk.
Bought him a bacon sandwich
And a can of beer
It probably comes as no surprise to anyone reading that I’m a pretty big fan of The Witcher. Although I’ve not read the books (I really should fix that), I love the computer games, and everything about them – the setting, the characters, the shades of grey in the decisions you have to make. And Triss Merrigold is pretty much my perfect woman. But I digress…
Anyway, my friend Nathan is also a massive Witcher fanboy. In fact way moreso than me. One of the reasons I love this guy is the fact that when he gets into something, he doesn’t do it by halves. Literally everything related to his current subject of focus must be obtained, devoured, investigated, learned, lived. That level of enthusiasm is completely energising to be around, and in all honesty, it’s helped me through many a rough patch over the past three years. Nathan’s enthusiasm is infectious, and I find myself more excited about anime, more interested in manga, more addicted to videogames than ever before, simply by hanging around with him. The world needs more people like this.
It was my birthday recently, and Nathan made me the most awesome gift. A “Witcher Starter Set”. It comprises a Witcher’s medallion, two Witcher’s potions (swallow and tawny owl) and bag full of orens. The medallion was purchased, but the rest were hand crafted. The wax seals on the potions are so well done, the whole thing is great. Nathan told me “the potions are technically drinkable, but it’s probably best if you don’t.”
These are EXACTLY the sorts of gifts I love to receive, and I’ve already had comments today about how much happier I seem than normal. Check out the picture below (taken at work, I’ll try and get some better photos when I get home)
I even received my first contract: hunt and kill the twisted “Gove” which has been skulking around Westminster!
Remember that time
I sent you flowers from
Half a world away?
Spend all day writing
Code which fails. Meet up with friends.
Then you fix the bugs
Yes, I had spent pretty much all damn day trying to modify a program to map two separate joystick devices to one virtual device so that I could play a game. Just one game. The code was almost there but it wasn’t working properly – it was combining the devices, but the axes were barely reading. I was about to give it all up as a lost cause, and then I went to see a few friends. When I got back at 2:00 am I decided not to go to bed and instead to have another look at my code. And then the answer was staring me in the face. The joystick driver works now and I can play my game. It was literally a 5 minute fix, but I don’t think I would have even spotted it if I’d not have been around such great people.