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I remember, when I was just a tater tot, reading in some children's story or other (I think it was a Doctor Boox story) about how someone wanted some free time or something to "catch up on his reading". It took me a while to figure out exactly what they meant by that - the obvious interpretation just seemed so strange that I couldn't believe that grownups had so much reading they had to do, that they would fall behind.
Man, I don't think I've ever been more wrong.
So, not to jinx it or anything, but it looks like I might be giving up the bachelor's life, and take a full time position at frog, maybe even starting as early as next week. The time and the commitment required are going to be a pretty big shock to my carefree contractor's lifestyle, but I really shouldn't turn down the money at this point, and it'll be good to hang out with some other nerds on a daily basis again for a while. Nothing's final, so there's still a world of possibility between me and an interminable series of days at the office, but hey, stranger things have happened.
In other grownup news, I made it through my third "Game Programming 101" class at ACC. Turns out, if you spend a couple hours putting together notes and writing them down on index cards, the lecture part goes a lot more smoothly, and I actually have stuff for people to do during the "make stuff go" portion of the class. The syllabus for the class has changed some from last semester - we're supposed to be focusing less on the act of programming, and more on the general role of the programmer on a development team, and how they interact with other departments, and whatnot - but I think I'm adapting okay so far, considering. I'm actually bucking the change just a little, and doing a python crash course this week, so we can get to the fun stuff next week - starting the main game project for the class - and so the students will have a better foundation in general programming nitty-gritty when I start talking about broader issues in development, and waving my hands around a lot more. Which should be pretty impressive, because I've almost taken flight a couple times as it is. Anyway. Python, yeah. Who would have thunk? More on that later, if I'm not too ashamed.
I totally need one of these.
Stayed a few hours extra at the office, to get some stuff done for the big meeting on monday for the big meeting on tuesday, and to make up an hour or so from thursday, when I needed to leave early to put together a lesson plan for my class - which, it turns out, makes things go much more smoothly. Got home, had the "what are we doing for food" conversation, the answer to which turned out to be, "we're going to the Alamo to see Land of the Dead, right now!" Excellent zombie pre-show, the usual tasty foodstuff, and a pretty darn good movie, overall. Not in the top five or so zombie movies, but totally enjoyable, if a little heavy-handed with the social/political angle. I missed the Shaun of the Dead guys, but Tom Savini got to do a little undead ass-kicking, which sent the audience into fits. I love the Alamo.
Today was AGD meetings, working on direction, and how to grow our membership, and what's going on with the economic impact study, and what we're presenting to the advisory board next week, the usual. Still pretty fun, still pretty excited about what we're doing and where we're going with stuff. Afterwards, I braved the wilds of Westlake to check out a new comics and game store, to scope it out, see if they would be interested in letting us put flyers up, or sponsor stuff, or work with us somehow. The guy there was totally friendly and helpful, and I reckon something can be worked out. I couldn't go away empty handed, so I picked up a couple packs of this interesting-looking little pirate game, came home, and spent some time putting together little plastic ships, before hunkering down for some reading and research.
Tonight, hopefully get some documentation cranked out; tomorrow, get an early start on my lesson plans for next week, so I don't have to completely stress out and try to cram something together in the short hours directly before the class. Should be a pretty packed week again, between finishing up my contract at frog, classes, meetings in the evenings, and... yeah, that should keep me busy for a while.
Hey, lookit that. Delicious added a thinger to automatically post whatever you added to your bookmarks to your Movable Type blog every day, and it looks like it works. I use delicious a lot, since I'm moving between at least three computers all the time, at home and at the office here, so this is probably going to be happening pretty frequently. Now it looks like I'm posting, when I'm really just being lazy! Yay internets!
(Also, don't forget about the daily link puke from #noisier. More stuff from more of the usual gang of idiots, only with a dramatically increased likelihood of urls and commentary containing profanity, pornography, and general sedition. View at your own risk. Do not click before consulting a physician. Pregnant women and people with heart conditions should avoid the #noisier blog at all costs.)
I'm not dead or lost in the woods, hiding from people who come out to look for me, just really super busy. I'm smack in the middle of this full-time gig at frog, about to start the second half of some educational flash stuff for forgefx, and just starting to teach an intro to game programming class at ACC - which I found out that I was actually teaching less than a week before the class started, giving me approximately zero prep time to put together any kind of lesson plan or anything. So, yeah. Busy. Oh yeah, and still trying to make myself useful to AGD, with the board meetings, and educational panels, and economic impact studies and whatnot. My usefulness there lately mostly consists of poking the website now and then, and nodding a lot at meetings, but, you know. Oh yeah, and that sooper seekrit startup thing. And trying to squeeze money out of my deadbeat cousin, who's still not paying his student loans. And... Dammit, people, I have video games to play! I mean... research to perform! Important research!
So, yesterday was my first "real" day in the office at frog - the last week (where I'd been getting up at 5am) was pretty much all training with the Flash guy I'm replacing (I think they're calling my position here a "Design M-something Technician", or DMT, which is pretty funny) and we were mostly holed up in one office or another, so's not to disturb the rest of the worker bees on the floor. Now I'm back to "regular" 9-6 hours (just a side note - when did that stop being 9-5?) and I'm out at Jared's desk while he's away. (I don't think I got the full story in before - I'm taking over his position for the last month of a project he's been working on for two years, because he's going to be on a reality show for three months where they drop a bunch of people in a ranch house out in the middle of East Texas in 1860. We were working the early shift last week because he had to leave early every day for horse riding lessons. Wacky, huh?) Anyway, going back to trying to work in an open office plan is going to take a little bit of adjusting - I've been pretty spoiled for the last few years, working in the office I've put together at home. I've got all my stuff set up how I like it there, all my reference books and my little work system in the right place, and the relative quiet and privacy that allows your average ADD tech worker to concentrate a bit. Well, yeah - gonna be some adjusting, here. And, lucky me, after my first day out in the GP, I wake up with that scratchy little tickle in my throat that tells me that a round of some random head-sickness is on the way. I'm sure it has nothing to do with being stuck in a giant germ-box with at least one person with a chronic hacking cough. I mean, really, I'm just about the least germ-phobic person I know - that five-second rule is really just a low-ish guideline for me - but sometimes it just amazes me that half of the American work force isn't out sick all the time from whatever is being circulated in these plague-farms people get themselves stuck in every day.
Anyway. The folks here seem cool, and I've talked to a few people who seem pretty darn smart, and the place has that "good old days" dot-com feel to it, with the foosball and the xbox and the hipness and whatnot, so spending a month here won't be all that bad. The work seems like it might shape up to be pretty fun, overall, too, so, yeah. Back to it.