How Gamers Are Born.

Gamers were all spawned from the same big fat couch-dwelling lizard.


One day, Slobbiroth, the mother of all gamers, was waiting in the dungeon queue. She didn’t notice, but some eggs fell from between her gigantic, scaley legs. They lay on the floor, unnoticed amongst the empty beer-cans and chip packets and debris. They lay there for several days, as she sat, and sweated, and stank, and clicked her mouse-finger up and down.

And after a few days, they hatched.


Slobbiroth’s children tried to get her attention, but she was oblivious. So, starving, they made their way out into the world. As each child came upon a living, breathing human being, it opened it’s mouth wide and swallowed that person whole. And, being shape-shifters, the children of Slobbiroth assumed the form of their most recent meal, and took on their lives.


Of course, their loved ones noticed. But Slobbiroth’s children had inheritted her cunning. They knew how to explain, and blame, and lie, and eventually they wore down the people around them. Tears had no impact on them, or shouting, or reasoning. The children of Slobbiroth were resolute. Nothing was important except for their need to game.


Some of them played WoW, some of them played EVEonline and some of them played SL. The retarded ones played Farmville. But each of them was the same. Nothing mattered other than securing an internet connection, bullying someone into paying for it, and staying connected. All the time.


Crises came and went around them. Children were born. Houses burned down. Spouses and children and mothers and fathers wept and pleaded. Some left. Some were so broken-hearted that they simply cried themselves to death. Slobbiroth’s children didn’t care. They gamed on.


Every so often, Slobboroth’s children felt the urge to breed. The males needed to find a female human to impregnate via cyberspace, and the females a male. They did this via a series of awkward conversations and falsified pictures of themselves.


And every now and then, while they are waiting in a dungeon queue, or for a battleground, arena or tournament to begin, or even while they are standing around in a nightclub in second life, eggs fall silently and unnoticed from between the legs of both humans and Slobbiroth’s descendants alike. They lie dormant for a few days and then hatch alone and hungry, and slither out into the world to devour good people and replicate them.


You may suspect that someone you know has been devoured by a child of Slobbiroth. If you do, please heed my advice. Move quietly. Don’t confront them. Pack up your things and your children, and GTFO.

There’s nothing you can do for them. They’re already gone.


What Bowie Taught Me Today.


Frequently of an afternoon, we walk  to the local park and daughter and I sit on the swings, just swinging and talking about this n that, while the dog runs around sniffing things and then peeing on them, and every few minutes he runs over to stare sideways at us for a while, because he just doesn’t understand the whole swinging thing. It’s not really something that dogs do.

So every time our darling boy comes over to investigate, we put the brakes on really fast so that we don’t kick him or swing into him, ’cause he doesn’t have a lot of sense when it comes to “getting out of the way”,and we do this of course, by digging our feet into the dirt a few times until the momentum stops…but I’m sure you have a basic understanding of the mechanics of swinging…

So yesterday, he finally figured out what this bizarre thing we were doing was for! I could see a light switch on in his eyes and he gave an excited little yelp and started wagging his tail furiously, and he ran up to where I was standing mid- swing (waiting for him to move out of the freaking way) and started furiously digging a hole at my feet! Eureka! He’d figured out what I was doing- I was trying to dig a hole with my feet! And being a really excellent digger, he had excavated a huge crater within 60 seconds, and he stood back wagging his tail sooo proudly and waiting for me to congratulate him and then get on to doing some more important stuff, like running around sniffing things and peeing on them with him.

So you can imagine  his look of sheer disappointment when I filled the hole back in (you can’t really go leaving craters in a kids playground) and went back to swinging. And how horribly guilty I felt, for crushing his sense of accomplishment. I gave him an enthusiastic patting and told him what a good boy he was, but he wasn’t buying it. He just kept looking from me to the freshly filled-in hole and back again. His meaning was clear. “You just don’t know what you want, human”.

What struck me about this is how much it reflects exactly what we do to other people. We see them doing stuff that seems stupid. We try to figure out WHY they are doing these things that are stupid, because if we can just show them a better way- our way- then they can come join us in our perfect world…doing normal stuff! And once we think we have it figured out, then we try to fix their problem and expect them to come over to the happy side. 

I’ll give you an example. You have a friend. You see that they are unhappy and don’t go out much.. You decide that you know what is wrong with them. They need to get out into the real world and have fun! So you start dragging them out to fun places and trying to introduce them to fun people. But they aren’t impressed. They don’t get happy. So you give up and they go back to doing their solitary sad thing, and you become frustrated. Because if they wanted to be happy, they’d appreciate your efforts and make the most of them, dammit!

But in reality, we have about as much understanding of why people do (or don’t do) the things that they do as the dog has of why humans like to swing on swings. And the dog has just as much chance of convincing me that I’ll be happy if I just stop what I am doing and join him in sniffing things and peeing on them.

Deep, no?

I think I’ll call that swing my thinkin’ swing from now on.

Barbie Boob Tubes

There was an inexplicable find in the supermarket bargain bin (which is actually a rolling shelf; I don’t know why the sign claims that it is a bin. If you tried putting your rubbish on it, it would fall onto the floor and make a big bloody mess). Anyway on the rolling bargain shelf there were 9 packets of nicotine patches, the expensive brand (actually worth the extra money because they don’t itch like the cheap ones do) for $12 each. That’s like 66.6% off.

So I bought them all. Screw buying food. If the kid complains of hunger I’ll just slap a patch on her. The same goes for the dog. And the cat. Hell I’ve got 63 of the bloody things now, why be stingy? And I felt good about my purchase, because look at how much money I saved! They won’t stop me from smoking but they do make me have weird crazy dreams which is kinda fun.

Anyway, at bedtime I decided to put one on (I told myself it was so I wouldn’t wake up wanting a smoke but really it was for the freaky dreams) and I saw on the packet that what I had purchased was in fact a 16 hour Invisipatch (16 hours because you aren’t supposed to wear them to bed, perfect!!) and the lable claims that they are “semi transparent”.

Well fuck me, they are just amazing. Here’s a picture of one on my arm. You can’t see the patch at all, right?


That’s because that’s the OTHER arm, the one without a patch on it. That is what I expected an Invisipatch to look like….invisible.

Here’s a picture of the real deal.


Now tell me, if you can, who the hell has skin that colour? Or that shiny? Or the word “nicorette” tattooed on themselves for that matter? I gave this a lot of thought and decided that the only person on earth that I have ever seen with skin that colour is a Barbie doll I used to own. Fake Tan Barbie I think she was called. But if these things are made for Barbies, shouldn’t they be quite a lot smaller? ‘Cause Barbie could wrap one of these around herself and wear it as a boob tube. To her funeral, cause if I wore a nicotine patch big enough to wrap around me I think it would do a bit more than give me freaky dreams.

But anyway the box doesn’t say “Barbie Boob Tubes”, it says “Invisipatch”.  This is the LEAST invisible nicotine patch I have EVER seen. Which, I guess, was why they were on the rolling bargain  shelf for $12 a pop.

The Free Dinner.

So, every Wednesday night my friend and I and our two daughters get together for a free dinner. And when I say free,  I mean bloody expensive but free from just about every ingredient that most people consider to be “food”.

You see, my daughter and I enjoy a gluten-free diet. And by enjoy, I mean tolerate, just barely, with occasional crying fits when we see things like pastries or lasagne or roast-beef rolls with gravy. Because there ARE gluten free versions of these things, but they taste like ass and leave us feeling hollow, disappointed and penniless. But anyway. We also can’t do dairy. Or, technically, fructose. Or a bunch of other stuff.   Now some people assume that this is all a choice that I have made  because I am a fruitcake of some kind. (Fruitcake is another thing we can’t really enjoy). To those people I usually relay this  disgusting and completely unnecessary story:

A few years ago I saw a gross documentary about a bunch of gluten-intolerant and/or allergic people that underwent an experiment where they were infected with a certain strain of intestinal worms. Any gluten they ate was digested by the kindly worms who presumably pooped out a more digestible substance which didn’t upset the host or trigger nasty auto-immune responses.  At the end of the experiment almost all of the subjects elected to keep the worms as permanent little gluten munching hitch-hikers so that they could enjoy a gluten-filled diet for the rest of their lives.  Now the other people watching the documentary with me were squirming in their seats and saying “Ewwww, those people are crazy, who would wants worms crawling around inside them?” whereas I was secretly looking out for a phone number or email  so I could sign myself up for the next round of trials. (Not practical as it turns out, since the studies were conducted on the other side of the world). BUT the point is, if I’d be willing to have myself filled up with worms in order to eat gluten, then….maybe any  naysayers can concede that my not eating certain foods is a choice about as much as you not poking yourself in the eye with a fork is a choice. You COULD choose to do it, sure, but you probably wouldn’t….no matter how much I roll my eyes and tell you that you are just being TRENDY by refusing a fork in the eye. To which the usual response is “See? I told you so” since everything I have just said constitutes excellent proof that I am, in fact, a fruitcake.  But anyway.

Whilst we are enjoying our gluten, dairy and pretty much everything-that-is-nice free diet, my friend  and her daughter are enjoying a strict vegetarian diet. (Well, I assume that they enjoy it). And that works great for me because I’m a vegetarian too, in the sense that I don’t eat meat unless it’s on a pizza, in a curry or served in a nice restaurant under a stick of asparagus and called an “eye fillet”. Or unless it’s Christmas lunch. Or if it smells really really nice. Or if it’s fish. But hey, a lot of vegetarians have exceptions so I don’t feel at all like a fraud. The point is, when the four of us get together for dinner, we have to get pretty creative.

So for the first couple of months I cooked, since my friend works on Wednesdays and I don’t, and I used to cook for a living so you’d figure I’d be able to whip up something pretty decent, right? Well thus far my attempts at creative “every-thing free” meals have been bland and kind of soggy. Because what I usually do at home is cook  meat and vegetables and if the meat I have cooked smells really really nice, daughter and I both eat it, and if it’s nothing special I just serve it to the kid and have the veggies. Anyway after trying for a few weeks to hide her grimace as she politely swallowed my revolting creations, my friend has started to politely suggest alternatives. Last week she suggested we could both use a break and we ordered gluten-free vegetarian pizzas. Brilliant; mine had 4 kinds of meat on it. FOUR!!! (It doesn’t count when it’s on a pizza, remember).

This week she was a little less subtle and brought over the left over vegetarian taco filling she had  eaten the night before. But she let me chop lettuce and pop the taco shells in the oven so that I would know that she loves my cooking as much as ever. The result was delicious and a wonderful free meal was had by all. Well for the sake of my pride, next week I’m going to insist on making another attempt at an edible meal that all of us can enjoy. I’m thinking pumpkin soup from a can. I don’t think anyone will be anything other than relieved.