Minecraft: Diary of a Miner Part 2

Work at Pigeon continues. I constructed the Stargate.

Also, the stairs go all the way from the Stargate and Nether Portal in the sky, down to the bedrock now. I’m working on making the stairs entirely encased so you don’t have to worry about creepers (or getting your pet dogs wet).

I miss my base at Aerie. The world known as Floaty has been my home and favorite place, but since the Nether Portals all come back out at Bunnies (the main world), I don’t really have a choice but to rebuild here.

I still go to Aerie. I can get to the Nether from there via the Nether Portal I built, it’s just a one-way ticket. It will spit me back out at Pigeon. So, to get back to Aerie I’d have to go back through the Stargate. Since the 1.6 update that also logs me off and accuses me of hacking, so I have to log back in too.

Hopefully Minecraft will one day natively have multiworld support. For right now I’m slowly rebuilding in the main world known as Bunnies.

The Tech Support Callers Everyone Loves

…and by loves, we mean we love that we have job security and can secretly feel superior. We remind ourselves this every day. It’s a mantra that keeps us going back to the phones no matter who we have to talk to.

Here is a short list of some of the regulars who call phone tech support. What a coincidence, these people call you too?

If you think you are one of these people, I assure you, the people who do these things know not what they do.

The Nommer
This guy waited until his lunch break to call you. How do you know? Because he’s nomming, slurping, and smacking in your ear. Just when you think it can’t get any worse, he pops a cough drop in his mouth and starts clicking it against his teeth in your ear.

“…click-clock-click …smnosh-smnosh… Yersh, Ihve jrest shent crunch… gulp… you an email with the error.”

The Ummer
This customer is characterized by uncontrollable verbal tics such as: “Uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh”. We also have, “um”, “er”, “ah”, “like”, and ending every sentence as if it were a question. A lot of people sound smarter than they are, but these people never do.

“Er. Um… Uuuhhh… I have… like…. Ah. Veesta Ultimate?”

“Ummmm… I’m running… like… the newest one, Snow Leopards..?”

The Entitled User
When people are way too good to know anything about their own computer (or try to check for you), check system requirements, or take responsibility for messing something up (or at least not blame it on you), there is a good chance they are an Entitled User. There’s nothing you can do, say, or fix that will change that fact.

“Why do you make this so complicated? It should just work. What do you mean this won’t run on my computer? You have to support Windows 2000. I’m going to put you on hold. I need to reboot my computer.”

I use Vista, Have UAC Still Turned On, and the VOLUME PUMPED
I don’t know what the call is about yet, but I know it will be painful more due to the fact I have to listen to:


every time I ask you to do anything.

Can You Hear Me Now?
This guy is jealous of your headset. He cannot type or use a mouse with one hand. He thinks that speaker phone works with his dog barking, children crying, and wife talking to him in the background.

Even better, he’s in traffic not even at his computer. How does he expect to troubleshoot the issue? I don’t know either.


Idiot Pirates (ur doin it rong)
“So… I downloaded this from a website and I can’t get it to work right. Yeah… I didn’t buy it. It’s the free version. I don’t know what pirating is and I don’t think I’m doing that, but my friend said there was this free version. So I went there and I downloaded it and now it doesn’t work. Can you help me?”

Conspiracy Theorist
This guy is super paranoid. You’re out to steal his identity, send him spam, break his computer, and take his money and still not get anything working. He is not going to give you the info you need to solve the problem. He wont even give email address so you can look up and see what he has or send him a fix. What he somehow doesn’t realize is that he’s already given you (the company you work for) all of his info. What he doesn’t know is that you’re trying to help him and his identity is not worth stealing (since apparently it’ll mean an ulcer).

If you get far enough, he might start letting you know what he thinks the issue *really* is and insist you should check into it. These will not be plausible theories, they will be somewhere in left field or even outer space.

“Why do you need my email address? No! I’m not giving that to you. As it is, your company’s website has already broken my computer.”

Yeah I Tried That. It Didn’t Work.
You’ll wrack your brain. You’ll troubleshoot until your brain bleeds. I, the customer, will then admit I didn’t actually do what you told me to about twenty minutes (or three emails) later. It’ll be fun. Whee.

“*Sigh* Ya… I did that already. Of course I did.”

When The Dinosaurs Were Old
“I remember when we didn’t even have computers. What start menu? What’s that? Slow down there… you’re going to have to repeat that. I’m not very computer savvy like you youngsters. You have to understand… *long unrelated story*. Wait, you don’t make this? I called the wrong number? Are you sure?”

“(horrified voice) I might need to upgrade!?”

Anger Management
I don’t know what’s wrong or how serious it is, but I’m angry and I need someone to blame. It’s not my fault, so guess who’s going to take the fall? I’m not interested in getting this working so much as ripping out your heart and eating it.

It’s not that the customer is always right, it’s that he or she HAS a right… that is the right to verbally abuse you.


Linus Torvalds, Drugs, and Rock and Roll

Geek Guy 1: “Why does he want to talk to me about Linux?”

Geek Guy 2: “Oh well you know, you practically invented Linux.”

Geek Guy 1: “Yeah, me and Linus together. We’re buds. We even kiss on occasion.”

Geek Girl: “Wow. That’s kinda hot.”

Geek Guys: “…”

Laundry List to Take Out to Dry

Maybe when I was spending all that time avoiding dating, maybe I should have spent that time figuring out how to prevent the worst things from happening when I went to date again.

In general, I like me more when I’m not with someone else, and I have to figure out why.

I question myself more.
I defer to their opinions, let them win arguments for the sake of keeping peace, say I’m sorry when I should hold my ground (and hold my ground when I should let it go and change the subject), and think things are my fault when they aren’t or it’s not important.

I think about the other person too much.
At any time I am acutely aware of what they want and what I can get from them. I become a little obsessed, wanting to know everything about their thoughts, day, past, etc.

I go into hopeless story-book romantic mode.
My soft center under the hard shell starts to show, which is okay, but it’s too much. I start to trust and idealize the other person too much, opening up myself to being hurt easier. I start to have a hard time seeing myself without that person.

I start to lose a strong sense of self.
In deferring some of my opinions and identity to the other person, I become passive pre-feminism Cindy who constantly wonders what he might want.

I become afraid to be honest.
Normally I’m blunt and crass. I’ll still be honest, but I’ll be less sure about it. I’ll suddenly wonder about potential consequences that normally me and my life code don’t give a rats ass about. I start to fear what fully disclosing some of the crazy, negative, unstable thoughts I sometimes have. The temptation to hide my flaws and pretend I’m more normal than I am suddenly occurs to me when I’m normally not a self-conscious person.

I expect to spend more time with the other person than I should.
When I’m with the other person, I try to get too much out of each moment with them. I can follow the person around, touch a lot, become clingy. I constantly want to do things for the person and set my own stuff aside in anticipation of spending more time with them or doing something for them. I begin to spend less time with friends.

Okay, now that I have some things I’ve identified about the past, how can I turn that into things I need to make sure I do?

Don’t question the person you put forward.
This is the same person that a guy initially saw something interesting and good about. Whatever it is about you that made them want you was real. If they don’t still see it after they get to know you better, then it’s okay. Turns out you aren’t for each other and things have naturally run their course. Not everyone you date is potentially someone you’re supposed to be with or be with for a long time. If they potentially are that person, you don’t have a lot of control over that manifesting. You can’t force what isn’t right, and changing yourself to fit better will not lead to any kind of happiness. Keep your identity and remember how awesome you are even with the flawed, human bits. If they can’t handle you on a bad day, it’s doomed anyways. We all have bad days. You don’t need to be constantly proving yourself as worthy of their respect.

Your opinions are as valid as theirs.
Maybe they are even more so because they are yours. You don’t need to agree on everything to be with someone. You date geeks. Geeks like to argue and be right. Still, two people should be able to respect each other’s views enough not to argue a lot, or not to let a discussion get out of hand.

Don’t blame yourself.
It’s probably not all of your fault, if placing blame is even worth it. Move past whatever it is rather than wasting time on arguments, hurts, and negativity. If you start to see a pattern you don’t like, address it calmly. If you can’t live with it, let it end things rather than caving. Focus on your own needs, after all, you are number one. They should also be that to themselves. If they are strong enough to be with you, they will make their wants and needs known calmly and reasonably while standing on their own.

You don’t need to know everything.
Yeah, this person must be cool if you’re with them. Knowing everything won’t make them more cool. What are you looking for exactly? Are you trying to read the future? Let things happen at a normal pace and get to know them as they open up to you, not as you pry at them. Intense doesn’t equal better always. There’s no need to cling on, as it might take away from the specialness of an intimate moment.

Embrace that you don’t know how long the good times will last.
All good things come to an end. Life ends. Make sure you’re still there to find something else after it is. I’m not saying plan for it to be short, but plan to be able to exist beyond this.

Don’t lose your friends.
Make plans with the friends. Invite him, but if he’s not up for it, still go. Don’t cancel plans for him unless it’s an emergency, rare occasion, or you really don’t want to go out. If he hates a friend of yours, tough noogies. If he makes you feel bad for your friends or for going out with them, it’s a clearly marked warning sign.

Do more self-full acts than selfless.
You like taking care of people. You’re a big-sister at heart and a motherly type. That’s okay to a degree. You need to work on yourself first, and if that’s going well, feel free to give some of the extra to the person you care about. If you suffer, you both suffer. You’re not actually mom. You still need to come first.

And with that pep-talk I feel a little better. If I draw these things into the open for myself, it makes it that much harder to go into bad habits.

Jiu-Jitsu = Live Action Katamari Damacy

In my last post I mentioned that I was taking Brazilian Jiu-jitsu. I also stated that I had an epiphany about Brazilian Jiu-jitsu and its striking similarity to something else that is wicked fun.

I realized that Jiu-jitsu is really, essentially, live action Katamari Damacy. Sure, just like anything else that is a live action version of something, it is not exactly the same.

We cannot be a katamari though we wish we were. Katamaris are too great, powerful, and magic. However, we aspire to be more like the katamari. Jiu-jitsu can help with this.

Let me help you understand the things that lie at the core of both Katamari Damacy and Jiu-Jitsu with four main points.

1. You roll.

If you roll with someone in jiu-jitsu, it means you’re sparring with them. It essentially ends up looking like a human katamari is coming at you. There is no kicking, no punching, no eye poking, just grabbing on and rolling the other person up. This is exactly how it works in Katamari Damacy as well. Sure, in Katamari Damacy you roll up other things, but other humans and other katamaris are part of that.

2. The goal is to not be rolled up, but rather to roll up.

In Jiu-jitsu, the goal is not to get passed, swept, or essentially, rolled up by your opponent while trying to do as much to them. If you end up in a position where they are still rolling around but you can’t move, this is bad. It doesn’t mean things are over- you can break free and try to roll the other guy up, but it means that you’ve already lost some points.

…just like in Katamari Damacy.

3. You’ll lose if things don’t stick to you.

When we watch a katamari, it so effortlessly picks up the things around it. It rolls, things stick to it, struggling and there to stay unless thrown off. If you roll a person up and they come off, it means you got to go roll them up again. This is true both in jiu-jitsu and Katamari Damacy.

The effort of rolling up is greater in jiu-jitsu. The best comparison to Katamari Damacy is two player competitive mode. An important difference is that size, speed, and skill in Katamari Damacy means the difference between rolling up and being rolled up. In jiu-jitsu, skill and endurance are even greater factors.

4. There is a time limit and a point system.

In Katamari Damacy, points and winning are based on how much you roll up before time runs out.

Jiu-jitsu is not so different, however points are based more on how well you roll the person up within a time limit. One of the biggest divides here is a question of quantity versus quality. A katamari can roll all willy nilly over the earth while in jiu-jitsu, form is very important. Being the dominant roller is key, as you get points for moving into these dominant positions.

Also different is that you can use submissions to make the other person quit (tap out) in jiu-jitsu. That is illegal in Katamari Damacy and might get you arrested. Sure, a controller cord choke is kind of like a gi choke, but it is not acceptable in the gaming community. In jiu-jitsu, not only is it accepted, it is expected.