Livin’ wild, wild life…

OK, this is one of those “themed” entries I like doing – so I’ll start by getting a song stuck in your head, just like it’s been stuck in mine for a while…

“I got some news to tell ya – Woahoho – about some wild, wild life”
— Talking Heads, Wild, Wild Life
Life hadn’t gotten any easier lately.  In fact, it’s gotten harder, and weirder on a nearly daily basis.  I’m going to mostly ignore the harder portion, and focus on a few of the weird parts.
First off, I’ve been getting odd messages lately on Facebook from people.  Not a ton of them, just a few here and there.  I Tweet (which gets echoed to Facebook and a number of other sites, depending on how I post it) frequently, though I’ve slowed down a bit lately because… well, because of the messages.
It seems there are people who have started following what I do a bit more closely than I expect.  I’ve had the whole “Oh look, people are paying attention to what I say” thing happen a few times now, but this is even odder.  People are thanking me or telling me how they enjoy my posts about (insert subject – sometimes it’s writing, sometimes it’s feeding horses, sometimes it’s just about my life.)  It’s friggin’ bizarre.  
Talking with someone who started a chat on Facebook (and you’ll notice my Facebook chat is turned off most of the time now :-), and I realized 2 things:
1)  I consider my life to be somewhat normal.  I mean, sure, I do lots of random stuff (today I was at Butler as a member of the Advisory Board for their new Interactive 3D degree program), but in general I consider my life to be pretty boring 9 days out of 10.  I have my exciting moments, but they are few and far between, in my opinion.  I get great stories to tell, of course, but really, everyone’s life is about the same excitement level as mine.
2)  Other people don’t live like I do.  The parts I consider to be mundane stuff is even exciting to a certain (small) percentage of people.
But that’s not the only realization in my life lately.  See… there’s this other… thing.
I’ve brushed on this before, but, somewhere along the line I became attractive to women in my age range.  For some, VERY attractive.  
I’ve blown off more women than I have any right to in the last year.  Don’t get me wrong – I like sex.  A lot.  But I selected a path for myself, and I’m sticking to it.  I also selected a set of specifications for what I feel is a reasonable person to date, and I’m sticking to it.  Between the two, well, I end up with lots of… interesting offers, some of them quite… well, descriptive.  
But the persons giving the offers aren’t my style most of the time.  For instance, “U R Hot” is NOT a way to start a conversation with me.  I just ignore those.  (And if anyone is wondering – a few of them have been bots.  But most of them aren’t – and I’ve got some really cool ways to weed out bots in two or three sentences these days 🙂
Anyway… part of that whole “Wild, Wild Life” thing stuck in my head has to do with women – so here’s a few quick tales from my more recent exploits (and not all of them have bad endings though…)
The Secret Valentine
My Secret Valentine started messaging me again a few weeks after Valentine’s Day passed.  I got to know her a bit more – really, a fairly nice gal, but with a life that’s so completely packed full, I can’t imagine dating this person.
The Interesting Girl
I mentioned that I was going to head out with a gal to go see the Final Friday valentine’s exhibit.  It never happened.  She canceled on me, and well… I never bothered to ask her again.  I guess my rules aren’t “three strikes” anymore 🙂
The Red Head From The Past
This one gets interesting because it was someone on my “To Do” list (IE, if both of us ever turned up single and in the same room, do her. 😉  I hadn’t seen her in like 16 years (yes, another one of those that suddenly appeared out of no-where on Facebook), and after chatting for a bit she decided to come down to Wichita to see me.
And she made no bones about the reason for the trip:  I was on her To Do list too, and she’s single.
So she stayed the weekend with me after driving 3 1/2 hours to get here.  On Friday night, something “clicked” in my head:  Something wasn’t right with this girl.  And damned if I wasn’t right – she’s on medication (that she wasn’t taking regularly) for disassociative dissorder. Ug.  And she had depression issues, etc.
I spent the weekend helping get her back on more solid ground, and got a good thank you from it.  However, sex was not involved – I turned her down.  Multiple times.  Yes, I was a booty call, and I turned it down.  I suppose that makes me a bit of an asshole, but trust me, there was nothing but trouble headed my way if I slept with the gal.
She’s also permenantly off my “To Do” list.  Damn that thing is small these days.
The Out Of Towner
A while back I struck up a conversation with a gal online on Yearbook – somehow the conversation ended up a lot more interesting than I expected.  She was a sincerely nice gal who had recently had a lot of bad things happen – and she was honest enough to admit most of them were her own damned fault.
We talked off and on for a few weeks, and somehow I impressed her.  She was going out of town to meet a guy (she lives in a small town in KS, where the dating pool is extremely shallow, and filled with some really nasty stuff), and suddenly tells me point blank what she had in mind for her and I if it didn’t work out between her and the other guy (and she sent me some really, really nice nude photos to get her point across.)
She never quite got it together with her boyfriend (at least so far), but I’ve really kind of thrown this one a pass anyway.  Sure, the whole thing is sort of sexually interesting (OK, more than sort of 😉 it’s back into the realm of relationships based on sex, not the stuff I want – someone who stimulates me just as much mentally as physically.  Hell, if they stimulated me enough mentally, physically would be easy.
The Married One
So, on Twitter I’ve got a number of female friends, and all of them are just that:  friends.  I think nothing of going and spending some time with any of them, and I know it’s a pretty safe thing.
Except… well, that wasn’t as true as I thought.  An attractive older lady who’s married and I talk off and on about just about anything, and she invited me to lunch at The Anchor one day.  No biggie.  There was a little flirting, but nothing more than the normal levels.
Then things took a twist online.  One day she explains to me she’s not really interested in going to the farm with me (something that had been discussed) to see horses.  Well, in particular, her comment was that she “didn’t have a burning desire to see the horses” (the conversation just before that, by the way, had been boobs – started by yet another female friend, but one that really is “safe” to deal with.)
I haven’t chatted with her much after that – and it’s one of the contributing factors to my Twitter slow down for a short bit.  It was… creepy.  I don’t really need to have a fling with a  married gal.
The Peanut Gallery
As I mentioned, I’ve gotten quite a few lewd suggestions from women recently online – more than I used to.  On a whim, I posted four pictures of me on the site, and left the “Rate Me” button turned on.
None of them scored below a 9.0.  Actually, I think the lowest one scored a 9.4.
No, seriously, what the fuck just happened?  I’m an outta shape, still over weight mess.  I’m not a “bad boy”, so I can’t rock the beer guy and tattoos look (no tattoos anyway), and generally I just don’t see myself as being that, er… visually interesting I guess.  And worse, I’ve put back on a few pounds lately around the center (though, I’m already back to working out to take them out.  I shouldn’t have eliminated the long cardio sessions.)
More than one of the peanut gallery girls were at the Ren Fest – and I did my damnedest to avoid them (well, for the most part – I did say Hi to one of ’em, but she was running a booth and didn’t have much time to chat anyway.  I’ll admit she wasn’t particularly attractive, but, she was probably the most sane of the group.)
The Kitty Kat
While at the Ren Fest, I had to stop by and see friends of course, even if I did have a (not quite successful) book signing to deal with.  Adam and Missy always have a booth there, plus all the random folk who’ve added stuff to their booth and help out there.  I start chatting with Adam, and a gal walks up and says “You’re Davis.  Hi, I’m Kat.” and sticks her hand out to shake.
Don’t ask me why, but the introduction caught me off guard.  People aren’t supposed to know who I am before I meet them.  That’s how the world is supposed to work.  Of course, it really doesn’t work that way, and many people know who I am before I know who they are.  It usually leaves me with a funny grin, racking my brain to figure out what the other person might know about me.
But this one left me just shy of a stammer – I popped off with some of the normal “I hope you heard good things about me?  You did?  THen becareful, because they are lying” type stuff.
Kat seemed to have taken a mild interest in me – but not the creepy levels of interest I’m used to dealing with anymore.
She did manage to put foot in mouth once – we all went to supper (Adam and Missy’s treat) after the ren faire, and Tiki said something that made me howl with laughter – and I hickuped in the middle of the laugh.
The human body is amazing – it’s multi tasking at it’s most powerful.  We can do an amazing number of biological processes all at once, without ever considering it.  However, there are certain combinations that are completely incompatible.  For instance, laughing and hickuping at the same time results in extreme pain.  But your mind decides to continue the laugh anyway, risking more pain.
Tiki pops off with “I think Davis is broken!”  Kat’s mouth moved before the brain did apparently, and retorts “But I haven’t even touched him yet!”  I turned, grinned, and raised an eyebrow at her.  And she turned red. 🙂
Ends up that I start going to “Coffee” at Adam and Missy’s on Thursdays (Adam has invited me multiple times now, and finally talked me into it) – and of course, Kat is part of that group.  Last time I was there I spent most of a night giving her a back massage, much to the amusement of the rest of the coffee group (I have yet to actually drink a cup of coffee, as you can imagine.  I bring tea with me.)  
I ended up txting her and Saturday to see if she wanted to join me for Chinese (spending money, that quite honestly, I shouldn’t spend on something as luxurious as a supper out), and we went back to my place when they closed and chatted until 2 AM or so.
So another interesting girl enters my life.  Honestly, she’s heavier set than I’d prefer to date – but let’s see, she’s interesting, intelligent, and a cute red head to boot.  And the extra weight is easy for me to look past when the rest of the package is that good 🙂  
So what’s the downside that I use to avoid dating her?
Um. there isn’t one.  We’re not like officially dating or anything (hell, it’s been so long, I don’t really know where that particular line gets crossed at ;-), but considering last night I sat with her and a couple of friends and we were holding hand, I figure we’ll probably end up dating.
Fun 🙂
Check out Mr. Businessman, 
oh oooh oh,
He bought some wild, wild life.
Switching from web development to “entertainment” is one of my major short term goals.  Lately, people just aren’t paying their bills, and too many people have started doing things like charging $10 – $15 /hour for web development (no matter if they only do shit work, they are cheap), totally killing my field of work.
It’s been painful.  On the other hand… it’s starting to show promise.  From the time I declaired my breakover point, I expected 3 – 4 months of “broke as hell”.  Looks like it’s going to be closer to 5, though it’s hard to tell.  
The reason it’s hard to tell is, well, I’ve been movin’ and grovin’ on the next book game, so it’s almost around the corner now (I’ve got one more section to write, 20 pages, and run the beta test of the game – then hand it over to the Editor) But along the way, I’m making some interesting connections into the table top gaming side of things.  I haven’t pulled the trigger on the full marketing campaign just yet – I was holding until I got a date for the next “big” book signing.  So next week it launches – the signing isn’t going to be for a few weeks now, so no need to hold back.
And boy oh boy and I planning to push the shit out of this thing.  The website is about to get some updates (this weekend) that include the first round of new skills and such, plus event photos (I have an “official photographer” for my projects now – she couldn’t afford to blow money on a website, and I couldn’t afford to blow money on someone to take great photos.  So a bargain was made 🙂  As soon as that happens, there will be a wave of online ads (for free.  Hehehe – I know a few tricks ;-), and probably a few online articles (I’ve already got one invitation for a gaming magazine), and then… well, you get the idea.  The plan is set, I’ve just been waiting for the right variables to say “go” on it.
The next two game books (non-Horror Game books, that is) will be a shit load of fun too.  Neither one is named, and I’m getting ready to negotiate rights to use a “big ass kids brand name” in association with one of them that also happens to be completely out of this world new gameplay for table top gaming.  
But what about iPhone / Android games?  Well, I had been working with engines for that, when Apple changed certain rules.  It made me re-examine things, and I realized that for a couple of the games I wanted to do, I could also break ground in ways no one has done yet either.  It makes writing a new engine simple, since I’m really just re-utilizing certain assets Apple gives every iPhone programmer, but all of us have ignored.  The first engine test is just around the corner at the moment.  I had to create some assets.
Speaking of which… I love Photoshop for many things, but not pixel based game development.  It sucks.  It likes dithering, and all sorts of things.  Plus, it’s like killing flies with a shotgun – you don’t need that much power.
What I really needed was Deluxe Paint III from back in the Amiga game development days.  Too bad that’s long since gone.  Except… it’s not quite.  Someone has created a modernized clone called Grafx2.  It’s… well, nearly perfect for my style of art development (mainly because it’s where I LEARNED computer art anyways!)  This might be the first time I’ve been completely happy with a art development tool for the Mac or PC.  And it’s speeding up content development SOOOOO much!  I did in two hours what would have normally taken me all day.  NICE.
Sometime next week I’ll put the finished content (finished as in, what I’ve done, not as in final stuff overall) into the engine I designed, and see how things roll.  if it works, cross platform game development just got even easier for me 🙂
And of course, Muse is at The Editor.  She’s finished reading it, and enjoyed it.  T’is a good sign 🙂  She’s somewhere around mid-way through on the edit, so there’s still more work to be done.  And of course there’s a book cover to design, and distribution to set up, etc.  But that’s OK – this is number three, and I’m starting to get pretty good at that part of things 😉  
When I start looking at all the things I’m doing that are reaching release… wow, it’s starting to turn into a flurry of releases over the next two years.  And that’s what’s making me wonder about how long it’s really going to take – all it takes for everything I’m working on to go from “slow sales” to “how the fuck do I ship this all” is for ONE thing to take off.  Because of all the little ties and connections I’ve been working on, one product can’t drag the rest down in sales, but one product can drag the rest up.
I’m not done yet though.  I’ve got more marketing based stuff around the corner – but I’m having to wait on this and that type stuff here and there to make it happen.  No worries – I’ll nail it.  And when I announce a few of my upcoming marketing things, well, at least one of them will catch a few people’s attention on here 🙂
(So what about everything else?  I basically just wrote about women and games.  There’s a LOT more shit going on, but I’ll get to that some other time 🙂

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