Where I’m starting from – Creative 9/16

Right now, the only creative output I’m focusing on is boardgame development. I don’t have anything new signed with a publisher and I don’t have anything planned for self-publishing. To be honest the last couple of years I have not been able to get anything new in the pipeline.  That seems to be because:

  1. I have very little time to do any creative/design work. I get 30 second snatches here and there at my day job.
  2. By the time I get home I feel like so burnt out I don’t have much desire to keep trying to force creativity.
  3. And in general, just general creative block, probably magnified by all the stress, tension, poor health, lack of sleep, lack of time, etc.

I have several games in development right now. The biggest one I keep refining and reworking but it never feels like it’s biting exactly. And all the other ones I try a couple of tests for never quite feel like something I want to keep working on.

I have a Game Design site and a twitter feed, but use both of them very rarely. I don’t feel like I have the time or energy. This is bad because I’m not building my brand at all.

So there’s that.

Where I’m starting from – Creative 9/16

Where I’m starting from – Finances/Jobs (9/15)

Right now I have three sources of income, i.e. jobs.

I have a consulting position doing a variety of jobs for a private client – some pc support, website support for the business, some MS-Access development. This is really great for the most part – a fixed stipend each month, and the work isn’t too time consuming. A few crunch times a year and needing to be on call.

I have a “day job” working for an MSP (managed service provider). Boy, do I hate this. I don’t dislike the work, per se. But dealing with having no time for my own stuff at work, constantly having to account for time, coming to work to find out every minute of time has been budgeted for? Lame. No lunches, no breaks. I can run out for 5 minutes to get food I can eat at my desk while I’m doing tickets.  My last two jobs have been for this kind of company. This and the consulting job takes care of about 100k of my yearly salary (which is 99% of it).

I also get about a grand, on average, a year from my published boardgames. Which for the newbie isn’t bad, it’s pretty good, but not a lot of money to change a lifestyle or anything.

Debt is not so great. I’ve got about 10k in credit card debt. I’ve got a 30k unpaid tax bill that if I don’t resolve post haste will get my bank accounts shut off. I’ve been paying stuff off but I seem to be accumulating faster than I pay off, especially on the consumer debt side.

Expenses are there, not insane, but a little high. About 200 in utilities a month. 250 in car expenses (payment/inisurance). Another 100 or so misc. Food is high since I’m not asking wife to split – about 600 a month? 100 a month in Starbucks… I know, I know. A lot each month in Amazon for sundries – probably 200 or so.  Cat food, cat products, books and supplies. Occasional parts and art supplies for boardgame prototypes.

Where I’m starting from – Finances/Jobs (9/15)

Where I’m starting from – Health 9/14

I find it to be a useful exercise to make a note of where I’m starting from, so I can figure out what I need to tackle. I’ll use a few days worth of time to journal these.

Here’s the health basics:
I’m currently 48, male. 5’11”. My last weigh-in was 291 lbs at just about 42% fat (according to a Withings scale). Mostly Italian, big build, built for field work as one friend once said.

Pros (there aren’t many):

  • Um… I’m physically strong, for someone so out of shape.
  • Thanks to years of pain I have a decent pain tolerance.
  • I look sort of youthful? I have a full head of hair, which is good for 48. And with the exception of a 20 or so grey hairs, the rest are black.
  • My skin is in decent shape.
  • Based on my last blood tests, my cholesterol, vitamins, and general blood health was pretty good.

Cons (brace yourself, this make take a while):

  • Well, yeah, overweight. A lot.
  • Diabetes Type 2. That’s a fairly recent diganosis. Right now if I take my meds (currently 2x a day of 1000 mg Metformin, and once a day Januvia) my morning fasting glucose is averaging around 150-175. That’s not great, but it’s better than where it was when I first learned about the Diabetes a few months ago – it was then around 400. Yikes.
  • I have two herniated discs in my neck (the two lowest ones). This means a lot  of the time I have annoying pain, coupled with numbness and pins and needles in the right arm. At it’s  worst it’s crippling pain. I’ve sort of gotten used to being in some pain, there, all of the time. I talked to a specialist, who showed me the MRIs. She said I needed an opinion of a surgeon, which is where I left off.
  • My eyes lose some vision/close up ability from time to time due to the Diabetes. I also recently had a bout with corneal ulcers and a bad eye infection. The optho gave my drugs to clear that up, and I’m on a much more aggressive regime to change my daily lenses.
  • I have some intermittent pain and numbness in my feet (mostly the left foot), again, probably due to circulation and numbness.
  • My lack of fitness makes sexual activity problematic sometimes. I also get intermittent erectile dysfunction, probably due to everything above, and me behind in head wondering if it’s going to work or not this time.
  • My right ring finger had a trigger finger condition. It was operated on and released, but it’s still stiff and in pain. At least it’s not locked!
  • I get a lot cramping in my sides and feet, probably due to the above issues.
  • Besides the foot cramping, and the numbness, some of my toes on the left also hurt some of the time. But let’s face it – my constant pounding gate of near 300 lbs hasn’t helped, I’m sure.
  • While I haven’t checked in years, I’m sure I still have fatty liver. I had it once, and since I’ve not lost any weight, I probably still do.
  • I have a few dental problems. I have a broken crow, which I now have replaced with a temporary. I also have two teeth missing on the left, both of which could use implants. It would improve things a lot if I had them fixed.
  • The last time I had it checked, my testosterone was “normal for a guy my age”, i.e., low.
  • I have had a few really debilitating legs cramps – where it feels like my calf is tearing off in my sleep.

So… yeah.


What I did today: nothing, worked, this journal.

Where I’m starting from – Health 9/14

Getting Started (Again) 9/13

I’ve had this blog for a while now. A few times before, I started posting, mostly for myself as a journal. Then (as usual) after a few posts I stopped. A year passes….

In any event, due to some new circumstances with my life, I’ve decided to try it again. Let’s see if I can keep it going.

Note: this is the third year in a row I’ve looked at this. Ugh.

Just to be clear: the idea is I do one journal entry a day to show what I’m doing on any given day.

What I did today (9/13): Nothing. Worked. Felt sorry for myself that I’m getting old. I guess I get one day to do that, right?

Getting Started (Again) 9/13