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Panik Orchestra

Hi folks! I know I've not exactly been posting prolifically lately; chalk it up to my other job as professional worrier. Vickie reckons it's the Scots blood in me - those with the blood of the Haggis (my great-grandfather was a Scot) tend to be very possessive of money and worry about it a lot. I've been working myself into a depression lately over paying for the trip we'll be taking to Cairns for Vickie's son's wedding in January, as well as a trip to the UK I want to organise for mid-next year. See, I've been kicking myself for splurging on an Xbox when I had a perfectly serviceable PC, not to mention over-indulging during the Last Big Upgrade (which I still have a largeish credit card debt from). I'd talked myself into that upgrade so that I could have a system worthy of Tron 2.0 when it hit the shelves, and the problems I had with the Radeon 9700 enabled me to justify (to myself) taking it back and getting a PRO. I'd also got an e-mail from Boots, who wanted some advice on upgrading a freind's PC. The whole "guilt about the overkill upgrade" bit took hold, and I wrote back, saying if the friend was interested, he or she could buy my current mainboard and the Radeon 9700 PRO for a reasonable price.
This morning, I put the Xbox up on eBay and made a few posts on the Jyangroup. Vickie talked some sense into me, though, and I went over my budget again. Eliminating some of my expenses (I've already trimmed my comics subscription back to a few titles) and limiting myself to a strict allowance of $70 per week, I can put enough away to clear the debt and pay for the airfare to Cairns. While I'd changed my mind on the Radeon and mobo, I was still thinking of selling das Xbox (I'd even had an expression of interest in the Xbox from a member of the Jyangroup; his son has a birthday coming up) - at least, right up until a freind of the Cazman's made an offer. I started hemming and hawing, and once again, it was Vickie who was the voice of common sense - if I'm hemming and hawing that much, then I don't want to sell it. Damn it, she's right, I don't. Even through we still need a new aerial for the place, I don't want to sell the opportunity to play Halo 2 next year. Ich bin ein geek, all right. I'm also keeping my mainboard and graphics card, and offering Boots the advice originally asked for. This means I owe some people - Boots, the Cazman, Al and (the other) Trent of the Jyangroup - some apologies for dicking them around while I sorted myself out. I'm sorry, guys. I read in one of my favourite books once that there's this game called "schlemiel", the object of which is to do things that you (presumably have to) apologise for. Every time I apologise for something, I wonder whether I'm really just making some pathetic attempt to garner sympathy. Thanks to Dan and the loan of his digital camera, I've been able to put some RPG stuff up on eBay for sale. If you're keen, please take a look; this is stuff I really, honestly would prefer was converted into money, no horseshit this time. Please have a look and see if anything takes your interest; the auctions are running for seven days. I have a few things yet to post, and might wait for a week or so. You never know; we might just get a nice win out of Lotto! That's right, Vickie and I have recently started buying Lotto tickets. Our first entry doubled what we paid for it, so we used half the proceeds to get another one for this coming Monday's draw. I'm still fiddling with Movable Type right now. Although I managed to get the isntallation working properly, I started having trouble with the trial blogs I set up. I've deleted and re-installed the Perl-enabled build of Apache I downloaded and am trying again. My main goal is to get a working blog for Vickie set up, so that whether I go with Telstra or Marcus for my web-hosting needs, I can get Vickie up and running immediately, keeping this site running until I'm satisfied with my own blog. I'm also fiddling around with ideas for some blue booking in the Heavy Gear Black Talon campaign (something else I want to set a blog up for) and am trying to sort out what we'll be doing next session. In the meantime, Dan is still brewing away on the Bubblegum Crisis game he wants to run. It's five minutes to eleven this evening, and Vickie finally got me to watch a black-and-white Sean Connery movie called The Hill. It's a bloody great piece of British drama, and therefore a real change of pace from the Bond films (Connery did it right after Goldfinger). Everyone in it does a fantastic job, and if you think you like British cinema, you owe it to yourself to watch it. (Editor's note 10 Oct 03: Credit where credit's due; The Hill was a present to us from Jillian when she was here in January.) By the way: We've found a new gaming addiction. It's called Rocket Mania!, and as you've probably guessed you can find it on your old stand-by of Web gaming, Popcap Games. It's one of those addictive little bastards that you keep playing for ages before you realise how much time has flown. Personally, I like the cute talking dragon.
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