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It's been something that I've been meaning to do all year - set a budget, sort my life out, all that good stuff - and just never got around to, but someone cloning my card put the wind up me, so I actually set to it this week.

(The card has been stopped and the money refunded, just so people know! :) )

But... Okay, so my bills come to about £300. Getting to work every day is about £245. This month, my paycheque came to £530 and change. ... This is not fucking sustainable. This was the first month since September 2013 that I could afford to pay my rent and my bills, and even then I'm going to be living out of my overdraft until next payday.

I knew that I needed to look for a new job, I just didn't realise how bad it was.
Where you look at game blurbs advertising "20+ hours of gameplay!" (Example - see also Enslaved and Bayonetta though.), and you're like "Pfffft, amateurs," because of all of those 60+ RPGs you play? And then you suddenly remember that the only ones you've finished in a while have been 20+ hours and the 60+ hour ones are gathering dust?

Anyone? No? Just me? ... Okay.
19 May 2015 @ 09:49 pm
And now for something completely different: I have a job interview! To work in the mobile library! I completely forgot I even applied for that!

I'm somewhat not worried or fussed about this one, because there are like FIVE JOBS GOING for libraries in the country that I work for, within an hour's bus ride of my house. YES. LET ME LOVE YOU.
Like, I will NEVER judge anyone for their OC's ridiculous name, because there is someone who has probably named their kids that.

Top 3 this season: Chrystelle (which is showing up as a valid spelling in my tablet! Amazing.), Krystal-Rayne, and Summer-Bleu.

Favourite overall: a Ms Faust, who was in the library (in tweed!) to give a talk to an Egyptology society. No, seriously.
(Gangsta as in the manga series by Kohske, not as in anything else.)

There is apparently a hole in my heart where the entire works of Kazuya Minekura used to be, and this isn't quite filling it, but it is so close. It has everything I want! Deaf sort-of-hitmen and their hearing partners! Badass female characters! Mobsters! Awesome fight scenes! Backstories so tragic even Batman would sit back and go "Damn, you had it rough!" Gorgeous artwork! Excellent coping strategies and by excellent I mean the opposite of that. Complicated relationships!

Like, it's not perfect? Every time one of the characters uses the word "tranny" I wince, and it falls into trope of "You can tell that this is grim and gritty because there are three brothels and two of the main characters are sex workers." But it has the same feel as a Kazuya Minekura series, and I swear to you that that is a guaranteed "SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY" thing.

Plus I want to write drabbles for it so badly.
18 May 2015 @ 12:15 am
Okay, in order of least-to-most appalling, here are a small selection of things my family did this week while I was visiting my mum:

  • My brother flipped a wagon over. Not, as people apparently assumed when I told them this, a hand-wagon. An actual, honest-to-god flatbed truck.

    Picture behind the cut.Collapse )

    Please note, this is the LEAST appalling thing that happened this week.

  • My 22-year-old niece Davina tries to convince me that UKIP aren't racist, and that they have the right idea with trying to remove immigrants so there are more jobs for English people. I legit nearly kicked her out of the car.

  • My oldest sister, Elaine, asks us if we remember when she used to leave love bites on her daughters thighs ("They were just so chubby, like the Michelin Man's! I just wanted to suck the fat out!") like it's the most hilarious thing she's ever done. No! I just remember you BITING YOUR TODDLER because you're a weirdo, I didn't know you'd turned it up to fucking eleven!

  • My SEVEN YEAR OLD NIECE (who is Muslim) turns round to me and Jill and says "I don't like Jews and my dad doesn't like Jews and my Mum doesn't like Jews, because Jews kill Muslims." SHE IS SEVEN. SHE IS FUCKING. SEVEN. I didn't even know where to start with that beyond "NO Rihanna, NO," because all roads end with me phoning her mother and screaming "WHY ARE YOU TEACHING A FUCKING SEVEN YEAR OLD TO BE ANTI-SEMITIC YOU FUCKING RACIST COW?!" down the phone at her.

Usually I'm really sad to leave my Mum's, because I love seeing her and the family, but all of that happened on Thursday! And I was SO READY TO LEAVE.
(Baco, I swear I'm not doing a reread without you - I was flicking over some scans to check whether I remembered things right!)

Cut for spoilers for volume 4.Collapse )

I also periodically forget that one of the themes of Saiyuki is letting go of guilt. I don't have anything to add to that, it's just that I remember Sanzo saying "If you meet the Buddha in the road, kill him," and not any of the parts where the guys go "Yeah, all of that guilt I was feeling was a waste of time, you're right," and then kill their problems.

1: I feel like if you're doing an AU so drastic that you could file the serial numbers off and have something semi-original, you should make sure you know what the core parts of the characters are. Because if you're just keeping the surface things (Basic personality, story beats, whatever), then... I dunno, it feels like you might as well keep going and make it something original? Like, I can't guarantee that's not what's gonna happen with the space lesbians thing, but.
(Yes I do, it's because I carry a filofax and those automatically make you look thirty times more organised than you actually are.)

Today, I went "Okay! I'm going to go upstairs and find my copy of Gangsta volume 5 and the notebook that has the start of the space lesbians story in it, so I can look them both while I'm at my mum's! ... Huh, I can't find my copy of Gangsta volume 5! GUESS I'M ALL DONE HERE!" and then left to go to Manchester.


Guess it's time to write some ridiculous pairing nonsense then!
(The subject was nearly "GONDOR CALLS FOR AID" but I figured that everyone would have suddenly realised that I was actually a doppelganger.)

Friends who aren't in my neck of the woods, this post is probably not going to do a lot for you and I'm really sorry. Friends who are in my neck of the woods: I NEED YOU.

So, on the thirteenth of June (which is a Saturday!), between 13:00 and 15:30, work is holding a boardgaming event! We're introducing the punters to shiny new boardgames! The titles I know we're definitely running are:

  • 7 Wonders

  • Carcassone

  • King of Tokyo

  • Ticket to Ride: Europe

  • Dobble

  • Hey, That's My Fish!

We might also have Love Letter and Settlers of Catan, but I don't want to guarantee those. I'm going to be in charge of teaching people how to play Hey, That's My Fish! and King of Tokyo. (Eep! I'm not good at remembering boardgame rules!)

"Susan," I can hear people asking me. "What are you actually pestering us for?" And the answer is... Maybe one of three things? If people have time?

  • People to show up on the day. This is the one I don't expect anyone to take me up on consider work is an hour and a half away from where we live (although Lex is going to be in the car, I think? So he might be able to give lifts if anyone wants one.), but I'm inviting all y'all anyway. Definitely only because you will enjoy playing boardgames. Definitely not because I'm terrified that no one will show up. Definitely not because audience plants who know how the games are played are an excellent addition to any introductory gaming session and would really help.

  • People to practice the boardgames with me! Guys, this is my actual job (I know, right?!), and as it's my actual job I need to know the rules inside and out. I have to be The Figure Of Authority and Able To Resolve Any Rules Queries. I am not good at that. That is why I married Lex! And still get angry about the stack in Magic: the Gathering! So, any time between now and June 13th, I may need to grab people and frantically demand that you let me teach you how to play Hey, That's My Fish. PLEASE DON'T RESIST.

  • Recommendations. The guy at work who's organising this is asking for recommendations! He wants good, intro/gateway level games, ones that could be a decent intro to the hobby. He wants things that are simple to pick up ("They need to be able to look at the cards in their hand and go 'Oh, that's how you play that!'") and... Not obviously fantasy-themed, as he's trying to lure in the muggles. My initial ideas were Machi Koro, Tsuro, and/or Fluxx, and/or RoboRally, as those are fairly simple, self-explanatory games? But I'm not at home so I can't look at the Cabinet O'Mystery and go "Oh, yes, that!" Any suggestions? Please help me with my homework!

... So, yes, if anyone feels like coming along and/or making suggestions, or even just help me learn to look like I know what I'm doing, I WOULD REALLY APPRECIATE IT.
10 May 2015 @ 03:30 pm
Someone talk me out of going from DRAMAtical Murder to Puella Magi Madoka Magica without stopping to pass go or collect £200, because it would PROBABLY KILL ME. Not just the difference in writing quality, but in terms of both of them going "Hey, you weren't using that heart right? Because we're planning to just, y'know, rip it out and eat it in front of you."