Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Bark/Byte: Has it really been a week?

I haven't posted in a while, it seems, so here's a general roundup of what's going on.

The ongoing drama with the constant headaches remains ongoing, and I'm scheduled to see a neurologist a little bit later in the month. I'm a little in two minds about this - part of me wants the problem to just go away, while another part almost wants a serious diagnosis, if only to justify the weeks of pain, stress, and sleepless nights. It's like I'd be really, really annoyed if the root cause of it all was something utterly mundane. Time will reveal all, no doubt. At least I've been given some time off work until it's sorted out, which relieves some of the burden, and it does give me time to finish off the redecoration of the bathroom.

I understand now why people pay specialists hundreds of pounds to come in and re-tile their bathrooms. I'm about halfway through the job, and we're just getting to the fiddly bit (that is, trimming tiles to make them fit around the sink and toilet cistern). It's gone quite well so far and is looking rather good, but I'm not exactly going to rush to volunteer to do it again. Still, I can console myself that I'm saving enough money to fund a holiday by doing it myself. I'll link to some photos when I've finished, and hopefully you'll be suitably impressed.

Being ill for the last few weeks has had a few unexpected knock-on effects. Namely, when I have been able to get past the insomnia (you try getting to sleep when you've got headaches that just DON'T GO AWAY), I've been having some very odd dreams. In the past week these have included a dream about being in a school where my best friend was a Natascha McElhone-type girl who could transmogrify into a tabby cat (See what I did there? Oh, please yourselves...) and used her ability to spy on all the bitchy school cliques, and a dream about being in a haunted house in deepest, rural Finland. No, I don't understand the logic, either.

I've not really been in the mood for gaming recently - Fleur thinks that spending time in front of an LCD screen isn't good for you when you've got headaches (though watching a huge LCD TV is fine, apparently). I've kind of hit the wall again with WoW. All my characters are either too far from the next level to seriously think about levelling them in an evening's play, or my attention span is just too fragile at the moment to concentrate on a long term goal, such as putting five levels on my Priest alt, so that I can get the next stage of Tailoring skill. Now that Richard is in Outland, I'm fairly tempted to play with him and level my Hunter, but I'm not sure I can really find enough time to dedicate to that at the moment. My Canadian buddy Chris is also playing pretty heavily at the moment, and I suppose I should give him the same amount of low-level help I gave to Richard, especially given that it's my fault I dragged him into playing WoW in the first place... it would be a bit rude just to leave him to it, though he's not doing so badly, if truth be told. I've also been neglecting my Mage recently. I'm tempted to re-spec her to Frost and see how that goes, but again, WoW just eats so much time and I'm not sure I've got the will to sink that much into it right now.

I did reinstall and replay Jedi Academy at the weekend, because the missions can be played through pretty quickly and it's a nice game just to dip in and out of. I completed the whole thing in about five hours flat (over two sittings), using the God code, naturally. When you ramp up the g_saberrealisticcombat variable to 10 so that you're chopping off limbs, slicing through waists and necks at the merest touch of your lightsaber, it would be pretty frustrating to play it otherwise.

I also tried reinstalling Beyond Good and Evil, thanks to being inspired by the recent announcement of a sequel, but the game runs so damn fast on my dual-core Athlon (there's no frame rate limiter on the PC version) that it's utterly unplayable. I might try it again, using the processor affinity settings in Task Manager to run it on just one of the CPUs (a trick I use with Deus Ex), but I'm not sure how much of a difference that will make. It would be a shame if I weren't able to play it again before the sequel comes out, because I did think it was a terrific little game.
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