The Glade 4.0

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2019 7:24 am 
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God of the IRC
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It's been a long while since we had one of these threads, and most of the board has wandered off I think. Since the beginning of the year, we've had exactly 50 distinct user logins, not including bots.

So if you're still out there listening, how are things going in your neck of the woods?

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2019 7:37 am 
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For me, I'm still in Austin*. I still work at the same job for a local electrical utility. I've moved up in the world and am now interim supervisor for my group while I gain some experience so I can apply for the fulltime supervisor position. I still play Minecraft (sometimes), and I still watch anime (sometimes). My marriage did not last past the 5 year mark and we had an amicable divorce last year. I still haven't gotten over that. Earlier this year, my immediate family suffered our first loss when my younger brother passed away. I still haven't gotten over that either.
So I spend my days working very hard and my evenings doing random things. I try to get out on weekends but it doesn't always work out. Speaking of working out, I joined a gym called OrangeTheory Fitness. I find it very interesting, but I don't go as often as I should. I'm trying to get better at that.

So that's current me in a nutshell.



* Kyle, TX

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2019 11:40 am 
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Sorry to hear the past year has been so rough on you Mook.

I got remarried three years ago and had a son named Graham. Still living in Cleveland* doing digital design for a large insurance company. With a year and a half old toddler it is hard to do anything but chase him around the house and snatch bits of sleep here and there, I do look forward to the day I can start playing games again.




*Willowick

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2019 11:52 am 
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The last few years have been a mixed bag for me. C'est la vie, I suppose.

My wife suffered from several bouts of a life threatening illness that required intermittent hospitalization. After undergoing some new therapies for that condition, (which seems to have cured the original issue) she was left with a permanent migraine headache which has left her disabled, unable to work, and essentially a shut-in for the last 4 years, making me her caregiver.

My biological child's cancer treatments were successful in that she's been in full remission for a year, but after that launched into a series of other mental health issues including gender identity issue of her/his own, which has led him/her to pursue HRT, etc. (Against all advice from me. ) The retaliation for THAT, has been that my child has refused any contact with me for the last 6 months; this is probably the hardest thing to deal with.

My stepson, due to his mother's disability, decided to move in with his grandmother. (biological father is not equipped to deal with him solo) and he's closer to 'Granny' than me.

So I'm feeling a bit of an empty-nester these days.


I lost two grandparents just over a year ago (I'm very lucky to have made it to my 40s with all four alive) My father, brother and I took a 2 week tour of Europe to retrace Grandfather's service during WW2.

I'm currently working for a major payment processor in an IT leadership role.

TL;DR. Career wise things are good. The people I love are all hurting, so I hurt too.


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 04, 2019 6:51 pm 
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Am ok. Hard to login - blocked from work. I think I was one of the 50 logins...

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2019 3:07 am 
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I kicked my old lady out two years ago. Found out for the final time she was cheating on me. I was dealing with some pretty deep depression. We were married for 22 years and it just fell apart. I took that pretty hard. I constantly blame myself. Still. It has made moving on difficult. I work nights so meeting new people is next to impossible. Even if I wasn't on nights, I don't like going out. Pile that next to my self esteem problems... I avoid talking to women because I am not good enough. That is what I tell myself. Nothing I do is good enough. No one will ever want me.

Anyway... The kids still live with me. I still have my job. I have two different D&D groups going, both are based on the world of the last book I wrote. They seem to enjoy it, even if the book was a complete and total failure.

Life could be better but I still have one, so there is hope.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 05, 2019 7:29 am 
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Location: The battlefield. As always.
Am doing all right.

Working at Pizza Hut as a delivery driver. Working on getting a second job auditing customer service calls for Comcast.

Isolated, a bit. Don't get out much outside of work, but I am content.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 4:02 pm 
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I still wander in here once every week or two just to see what's going on.

Life is pretty much the same for me. Still living in the Seattle area. Still in the same job since retired from the Air Force in 2001 I'll probably keep working here as long as they keep sending me a paycheck every two weeks.

I stopped building guitars when I got to 23. I had pretty much exhausted all of my curiosity about them, and was running out of space. Most of them are hanging on a wall in the basement. Occasionally I pick one up to play, but even that has lost most of it's appeal.

I still love to ride my bikes, although age hasn't been kind to my knees and back, so I haven't done 9k miles since 2017 (on track for about 7k this year). I'll keep riding it until it's not fun anymore.

I haven't done any gaming since SWTOR. I still log in once in a while, but It's a lot like the guitar building. I've done everything there is to do. I have 20+ alts, and have pretty much exhausted all of the options for finding new things to do.


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:36 pm 
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I check in once in a while.

Kidney failure is my immediate concern. Hoping treatment goes well. If it doesn't, you've been a good group of folk for the most part and I've enjoyed most of my time here.

Thank you.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2019 10:59 am 
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Got a better job a little further from home.
Moved back in to help mom and dad with the property, dad died a few years ago on my bday. Mom got remarried. Im still living alone at the old property that is too big for me to take care of and have a life outside of it but the property is coming together. Most vacation days are spent on it and my list of big projects is finally dwindling (new water heater in, old shed empty but still up, flower beds have flowers a mulch and defined shape...).

I won the CMP lottery and got a WW2 era manufactured M1911 which is sweet. Playing Pokemon Go with rl friends and coworkers. Was playing a bunch of p99 but guild broke up and not on often if at all, mostly Overwatch with friends and Civ solo while hoping for Star Citizen.


Best of luck Michael with the kidneys.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 07, 2019 2:00 pm 
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Really well, actually. We've been in some extraordinarily rough spots, but things are finally sort of on the upswing, I think.

November is going to mark 20 years since Mia and I got married, an event that maybe a few of you old timers may still remember (or even attended!) Could not ask for a better woman, seriously, two decades on I cannot believe my good fortune in finding her. I mean, seriously. I could do a whole five-paragraph post on her here. I think I have, actually.

The four kids have grown up and moved out, two have moved back in. Three grandsons now. The tough early years of "who is this weird stepdad guy you met on the internet" have long passed, and we are a great little family unit. (I mean, they still think I'm weird, but hey if the shoe fits...) Tremendously proud of all four kids. My oldest daughter (doing teaching in local schools here) has two sons, smart boys. The eldest grandson is a brilliant 16 year old who wants to be a marine biologist. He and I have been attending lectures over at Harbor Branch a couple times a year. My second-oldest daughter is a take-no-BS go-getter who has a job at the same place I'm working now. My third-oldest daughter is a caring mom to a five-year-old boy with endless amounts of energy. They've been staying with us off-and-on for a year or two; she's going to homeschool him next year. This kid has an endless drive to help out, doesn't matter if I'm plumbing or digging in the yard or doing electrical work, he is there holding pliers or raking up dirt. My son, our youngest, is doing architectural engineering, and is a true Florida native in his off time, either outside or on his boat catching snapper or hogfish or mahi.

Despite starting over at a new job 6 years ago at the bottom of the totem pole, I've worked my way back up to senior management and am making a great salary. We've managed to put together a fantastic IT team here, creative critical thinkers who are doing some neat cutting-edge stuff.

We moved into a new house shortly after the new job, a really beautiful spot that is an excellent gathering place for family. We're still in Florida, about 20 minutes away from where we originally were at.

Haven't been gaming much; we still have active WoW accounts but I probably log in a total of 1 hour a month. Doing lots and lots of gardening and yardwork on the weekends.

This is probably going to be the high point in my life when I look back. Right now, where I am now. I seriously still can't believe it; I was just a kid who went across the country to meet a woman from the internet, there was this huge age gap, we had family drama, three months behind on our mortgage, tough medical diagnoses, the loss of parents and siblings, five hurricanes... how the heck did we end up getting out of that in one piece?

I feel bad sharing all this good stuff when you guys are going through some bad stuff. Trust me, I've seen the bad stuff, and there's more to come for me. For whatever reason, be it luck, craploads of hard work, or just willpower, I've managed to hit the sweet spot for this fleeting amount of time.

Glad to see you're all still around.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 12:12 am 
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Been married for the last 14 years and still going strong. Have two little boys that are great. I'm not near any of my family anymore, which means most of em never talk to me or call me back now. I have more off a relationship with my inlaws than I ever wanted, but it's about the closest family I have. Love living in the Midwest though and it's going to take a great career offer to get me back to Arizona.

I quit working as a programmer and went to medical school. Finally graduated medical school last month. Decided to go psychiatry instead of internal medicine like I originally thought. Starting residency next month. Sucks that psych will be one more year of residency than IM. But really enjoy the work and I get to spend more time with my patients than just about any other specialty except maybe heme-onc. Broke as hell right now and have a hard time remembering what it was like to have a steady paycheck, but at least that will be starting soon (along with my mortgage-sized student loan payments). Residents still make peanuts, but supposedly it will even out in the end when I start making attending money.

Still gaming. Often feel guilty about how unproductive it is, but it's the one hobby I've always loved. Playing lotsa Destiny 2 with Lenas and several others. Been doing end-game content which has been a blast. Gave up on mountain biking because it's just too time-consuming and expensive.

Sorry to hear about how things are going for some of you guys. If ya ever need an ear, just let me know.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:05 am 
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Life is good. Wife is happy and all 3 kids are tax paying members of society, busy having kids of their own. My #7 grandchild is a 3 month old beautiful little girl living with us for a bit till her Dad comes off deployment and he and my daughter move wherever the Marines want to move them.

I stopped consulting and took a perm position with the company where I've spent the majority of my career, still work with the same people I have for the greater part of the last 20 years, doing the same sort of thing I have for the last 40 years, still working from home. I'll retire when my wife (10 yrs younger than I) retires. I'm not totally comfortable with the career slowdown, I haven't interviewed in a couple of years and I'm not floating my resume. My main claim to fame for my contribution at work these days is mentoring, which I enjoy.

No time for video games anymore, but in a good way. My work with robotics, drones, and 3d printing keep me out of the icebox and nutra systems is getting me back to a "thriv-able", pre-sedentary BMI. I visit here regularly, post occasionally. My social media interactions these days are just a way I keep in touch with folks building the same machines I build for my hobbies. The world's so full of itself these days, I don't keep track of much going on since I don't trust anyone to tell the truth :P

My family is blessed with no health problems, I take no medications and my blood pressure was 107/87 3 days ago at my last checkup.

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PostPosted: Fri Jun 14, 2019 11:18 am 
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Just coming off a year from hell, but that which doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Wife asked for a divorce after returning from a trip for our 20th anniversary. I don't blame her...I was a model 1950s husband. 21st century? Not so much. I endured 8 months of infidelity while trying to save our marriage, but she has stopped cheating and we are in counseling working through our issues. I daresay even falling in love with each other again. She is still midlife crisis-ing...just got her first tattoo, at age 44, last weekend. On top of this, wife has fibromyalgia and changed jobs going back to having her own business with all the annoyances that come with it.

My eldest son is struggling with fibromyalgia, gut issues and OCD related to them. He stopped eating and dropped to about 95 pounds at 5' 10" tall. Therapy and Prozac have kept him alive, now 130 at 5' 11". Still too skinny, but not about to drop dead. My two other children are doing well, thank God, for the most part.

I try to get the family to play a board/card game at least once a week. Busy life makes this hit or miss. Kids all love my geeky games (13 Days, Escape, Defenders of the Realm, War of the Ring, X-Wing Miniatures, etc.), wife will play Exploding Kittens, Love Letter or Sushi Go with us, unless she makes us play telestrations or Pictionary (who still plays that???). Don't have much time for computer or video games, but the desire to play is still there when I can. I play Fortnite a bit, mostly to make the kids groan and tell me how much I suck (I do have 3 solo victories though).

Work is stressful, but interesting as hell. Working as a lead engineer on the replacements for two of the most recognizable aircraft in the world. Have a great, slightly inappropriate, and fun team.

Headed to Disneyland in two weeks...can't wait to stand in line in Star Wars land. Not sarcastic.

For all the bad that happened over the last year, stronger foundations are being built, and I am on a positive trajectory.


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 23, 2019 1:32 pm 
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I was out of work for 2018, and the first couple of months of this year. 2018 because I didn't want to work for anybody and didn't have to, the first couple months of 2019 because I didn't want to lean on any professional contacts to get another job.

I have created a 501(c)(4) that I need to figure out how to fundraise the initial year's operating expenses. GoFundMe is **** usurious. I may still have to go that route, though.

After getting TPKed years ago running Expedition to Castle Ravenloft, two of us from that attempt have taken our revenge in Curse of Strahd. Coro was the DM both times. Since the end of that module, I have been running an Exalted campaign, in which I recently demonstrated why they should all immediately focus on improving their defenses.

On the computer side of things, I regularly play Warframe, and occasionally fire up Dwarf Fortress.

I hit FNM as much as I can, and try to catch a prerelease when the opportunity arises. I was playing Arena, but don't have the time for that now that I'm back at work. I may be the lowest regularly-active DCI number. Of the 5895 possible members of the DCI with a lower number than me, I am pretty sure I have outlived some non-trivial amount, which is somewhat distressing.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 23, 2019 5:40 pm 
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Again, we are reminded, a DM only runs Ravenloft when he wants to kill the party.

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PostPosted: Sun Jun 23, 2019 8:54 pm 
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We celebrated their victory with a giant birthday cookie cake and shots of whisky.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2019 4:32 pm 
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The last few years have been a bit of a blur. I finished my CS degree, cum laude. I've completed most of my master's (9 hours remaining), but I've taken the last year "off" to start a consulting career.

I got connected with a veteran corporate consulting developer / indie game dev of some note towards the end of my BS. He's been helping me get into the contract development business. I've set up an LLC, and we've partnered up on a mobile app contract. I've been doing the primary development with him as the architect/project lead role on an "as needed" basis. I get to work from home, I don't have to deal with petty office politics, and the pay is absurd. I'm 100% making this **** up as I go, but if anyone asks, I'm a mobile expert :psyduck:.

The whole clinical depression thing has had its ups and downs. Due to reasons, the last year has been a deep dive through the darkness, but my crazy gambit has finally paid off. I'm back at all-your-liver-can-eat levels of SNRIs and I'm finally in a position where no one can ever hold my mental health hostage again.

As for hobbies, I've been a little too busy and/or overwhelmed to do much art for a while, but I'm hoping to get back into it soon. My current gaming vice is Final Fantasy XIV (excuse me, mam? Do you have a moment to hear about our lord and savior, Yoshi-P?). Stormblood just dropped, and I am hyped for the lore bombs. I'm still a massive horse nerd. The ride never ends. In fact, I'll finally be able to make it out to BronyCon this year. So Mookhow, Mus, and others who shall not be named: if any of you also happen to be going to the last hurrah, let me know. I'm meeting up with another internet friend of mine there, and the more the merrier.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:22 pm 
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Well, the kidneys did finally fail and now I am on dialysis. With Dialysis I am feeling better and have more energy. Wondering which adventure comes next.

I am outside the active earthquake zone by quite a bit. If you have not been following it the active zone centers in Ridgecrest, and the folks within 150 miles or so are getting to watch their chandeliers shake and their pools have tidal events. The largest tremor was 7.1 and due to the constant shaking, 3000 quakes in three days, everybody is on edge.

Los Angeles is having conniption fits and you get everything from chill out folks, it will calm down soon, through OMG we've finally got the big one coming and we're falling into the ocean. As usual the truth is somewhere in between. The pattern suggests the area will be suffering minor quakes regularly for the next six months or so. If shaky grounb bothers you wait until next year to visit southern California.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 14, 2019 6:47 am 
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I transferred to a new (but similar) job which has me working behind government firewalls, and that's curtailed my habitual daily checking here. I still pop in from time to time to mostly lurk entertainment and gaming threads and check up on things.

Earlier this year, I got married to a wonderful woman I met officiating roller derby, and that's the big news for me.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2019 5:13 pm 
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Congrats, Kaffis! Was she a spectator or a competitor?


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 18, 2019 11:02 am 
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Lonedar wrote:
Congrats, Kaffis! Was she a spectator or a competitor?

Another official, in fact. So, sort of split the difference and call it a participating observer? :lol:

She started out as a skater years ago, before breaking her collarbone twice and deciding maybe she was done with contact.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 20, 2019 11:52 am 
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Congratulations sir!

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PostPosted: Thu Jul 25, 2019 8:28 am 
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Hey guys,

Saw this a few weeks ago and meant to update, but it's been rather busy so I haven't.

The reason is I've been in Kuwait for the last 9 months; I was a Brigade S3 (head of operations). We got there just in time for the "Syria Withdrawal" and left just after the "drone getting shot down by Iran" thing. The last 2 months were pretty tense with Iran, but thankfully we managed to avoid getting lured into a war over a few damaged boats and a robot. Enough said about that. I've been home on leave for 2 weeks tomorrow; I'll still be on leave until mid-August, going back to work about 1 SEP. Hopefully this next year I can pick up a GS-13 position either locally, or in San Antonio or Dallas. I'll also be resuming my CS Master's; thankfully we weren't gone long enough that I have to re-apply to the program.

My mother moved in with us almost 2 years ago after coming down from Delaware with some health scares. She's doing fine, but she was tired of my sister using her as a babysitting service. Unfortunately, the reason it is that way is that my family has a unique talent for alienating each other, and my mother can't keep her mouth shut. She's managed to mostly alienate my wife as well, and I was getting really worried the last couple months overseas, but it's calmed down now, and my wife was glad to have the help while I was gone (my mom is not lazy, just opinionated).

My cousin, who I was probably closest to of the whole family died suddenly last year at age 40 while I was at the mobilization station, leaving 2 small children and a husbad who is a great guy. Hopefully we can go see them in a few weeks; they are back in Pittsburgh, and we're going up to Cleveland to visit my oldest and my wife's parents, and then to the Pittsburgh area for my wife's cousin's wedding. Allison (my oldest) is still struggling to find a good job after graduating college 3 years ago (has full-time with benefits, but poor wages). She's been dating the same girl for about 4 years now so hopefully they'll get married and have some grandkids before long. I think being a young grandfather would be pretty cool.

The deployment was terrible for me mentally; the Army is really having serious issues that the senior leaders just don't see, and it's their own damn fault; they just do not seem to understand that they have to be honest with the political leadership about what can and can't be done instead of just saying "three bags full, sir!" and hoping for another star. This is a problem that's been growing since the Korean War, it's just really accelerated in the last 10 years and it's now very, very visible. i can't speak to the other services. I will get promoted to Lieutenant Colonel next year and do the three years to retire at that rank and then I will be done.

Physically, though, it was an easy deployment. I got in really good shape (got my highest-ever score on my PT test) and started doing Brazilian Jiu Jitsu a few times a week as well as lifting weights; I was always more of a calisthenics guy. I feel pretty good, although age is showing. I had a string of minor injuries across the entire deployment, so my left wrist is now premanently stiffer than before, my left elbow doesn't quite straighten all the way any more; ankles, shoulders, etc. I'm going to keep going with it here, though, and at least one of the girls wants to do it too.

Gaming wise I'm on an extended break from EVE; my or may not go back. Playing ESO and Overwatch quite a bit and some Fallout 76 as it improves from it's initial sad state. All criticism aside, it's a gorgeous game and really evokes West Virginia. I love walking around looking at the scenery, especially roads I drive and towns I went through going to drill and such. Some Destiny 2, as well, and I'm planning on trying Red Dead Redemption online.

I guess that's all the news that's fit to print.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 12, 2019 5:00 pm 
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Some nostalgia when I log in and see that background change the familiar old Glade colors.

I have my 8th anniversary coming up at the end of the month, been together for 15 years. It's been a learning experience for me and not always great, but it's been better than not for quite a while now. My wife is pretty adamant about kids, and I'm not opposed but I've somehow become 48 and she's 40... so we'll see how that goes. Everyone is getting empty nests and I might be just starting.

Bought a place out of town about 10 years ago. Decent short sale that I've been working on, and 3 years ago bought the 6 acres next door and another run down house and trailer combo that I'm still working on clearing.

Still working on cars, but deep into the diagnostics of things nowadays which is my preference. I can go more than a week without touching a wrench. I never thought I'd be trying to decode network packets for my job. It's become extremely difficult to diagnose things correctly.

Some struggles with OCD, and some depression for some reason because my brain hates me, along with waxing and waning of Tourettes .

I still game. Not as much as I used to. Only PC (wife commands control of all consoles). Fallout series as they come out, some old old ones I used to play as a kid I've been revisiting. I still play EQ. I've taken breaks years at a time but I have found a new small guild that is so very friendly and helpful and are a lot of fun to play with. Most are like me that played in the beginning, took a break to have a life and have come back.

It's nice to see people still around. My heart goes out to those that have so many struggles. if nothing else, know that your story had been heard.


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