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Ten Year Meme
Bar Harbor
My memory isn't great, but I've dug through old emails, and checked other documentary evidence that's handy. There may be some inaccuracies in the early material.

March 1994
Karen has moved in with me, making her my first live-in girlfriend. We are not strongly committed to each other, but we are in love, and about as happy as we will ever be together.

Karen is also being Stage Manager for The Knight of the Burning Pestle, which I am directing and jducouer is producing. The BoD Crisis has me angry enough that I consider cancelling Pestle in protest, but I wind up not doing so.

During one rehearsal, jducouer asks me why all the ftp sites (in these pre-WWW days) are loudly stating in their login messages that they do NOT have copies of Doom. "What is this "Doom" thing?" Space marines and demons from hell are preparing to take down LANs across the country.

March 1995
IIRC, sometime in the last year, Vis and Mara bought Melville Keep. I credit Karen for putting the idea in Vis' head. Pamela (former owner) has decided to move somewhere less urban, in order to have a better child-rearing environment. Karen and I were glad to not have to move.

For Valentine's Day, Karen decorates the staircase leading up to the third floor with pink and red hearts. They remain up for the following year, adding a cheery note.

I'm doing random temp work. Karen isn't working at all. She says her savings are in good shape, and she'd just as soon not work. I'm concerned, but unable to change her behavior. This pattern will continue for years.

March 1996
In early February, Karen broke up with me. She moved into the other third floor room. Living with an ex is awkward.

I "celebrated" Valentine's Day by systematically tearing down all of the pink and red hearts that were still on the staircase. Karen is offended.

March 1997
After being single for a while, I've started to date Erin.

Working (temp) for a large bank, doing customer service. Dull, but they don't mind if I play games between calls. I get bored enough to eventually go through every level of Doom II starting only with a pistol, just to see if it can be done.

Carl Alexander has moved out of the house, and Barbara has moved in.

March 1998
Erin has recently moved in with me. I'm starting to think in a general sense about marriage, but I'm far from sure it could work with me and Erin.

I'm nearing completion on my Storytelling in the SCA book. I'm almost certainly doing a class for the upcoming IKU, but I no longer remember what.

I'm working a contract job at Northeastern, preparatory to helping them move all their multifarious student databases into one unified system. The project has "doomed" written all over it, but it's a steady paycheck.

March 1999
I've found my vocation, thanks to jducouer: Computer Games. I've been working at Looking Glass Studios as a tester for a while now, first on Thief, now on System Shock II.

Sadly, the long hours of the work are one of the factors that lead to Erin and I growing apart more and more. We won't last out the year together.

I'll shortly be helping run the shortened version of The Future of Oz at Intercon, and playing in Andy's game, Elfwhere.

I'm doing early work on autocratting Festival of Storytelling II, in September. I will have a mild nervous breakdown over it eventually, but the event will still go off passably well.

March 2000
In August '99, kestrell arrived. She had become unexpectedly homeless, and was only going to be staying overnight, and shifting to someone else's couch the following night. Vis was at Pennsic, but I (correctly) figured that if he were here, he would say "Stay as long as you need." I said so in his place, which turned out to be one of the most important acts of my life.

By fall of '99, Erin and I had broken up, though we remained friends. She moved temporarily in with kestrell, an amazing feat considering the size of the room. Now I was living with two ex-girlfriends. Worse yet, I was feeling a strong (and perhaps mutual?) attraction to kestrell, which made things even more awkward.

Erin moved out in January, easing tensions somewhat. But kestrell had decided that she didn't want to start a relationship with me after all. That lasted until a bit before Valentine's Day when, confused by my acceptance of her "no" decided to change it to a "yes". We are now in the delightful "new relationship" stage. Unexpectedly, certain aspects of this will not end up fading over time, but actually increasing!

I was hired by Irrational Games last year, but that didn't work out so well. I was born to work on games, yes, but definitely not</b> to be an "associate prodcuer" or an office manager. We parted ways in February, but like the proverbial bad penny, I'll be back. Meanwhile, thanks (again!) to jducouer, I've got a fascinating contract gig writing the design document for a MMORPG. This will eventually succumb to the .dot-com bubble-burst, but I had fun, and got paid for a few months.

Another IKU class, no doubt. Working on an accompanied-by-harp presentation of The Lay of Thrym for the Heorot event. The Historian/Librarian web pages are first going up around now.

March 2001
In February, I had been dating kestrell for a full calendar year. The early passion has faded some, but been replaced by much deeper feelings, at least on my part. I had long ago made myself a promise that I would never propose marriage to someone without having lived with them for a full calendar year (in order to counter my occasional tendencies toward dangerously reckless romanticism). I proposed, and with some trepidation, she accepted. At this point, she's having serious second thoughts, but will eventually go through with it.

After a brief stint doing QA over at Impressions Games, I'm now back at Irrational, albeit temporarily. I will continue to be there on and off for some time, as their need for me comes and goes. I like living the nomadic life.

I'm getting ready to run a bardic circle at the Ommegang event, and to do my Boccaccio riddle-stories class at IKU.

March 2002
Four months after the wedding, kestrell is "beginning to get used to this whole "married" thing." I persist in not turning into an ogre, and she's gradually starting to think that, just maybe, I won't. We're making plans for a belated honeymoon in the summer, in Bar Harbor.

kestrell is applying to UMass Boston, in hopes of finishing her bachelor's degree.

Somewhere in the last year, Irrational decided to switch engines for The Lost. Finishing this game is beginning to seem like a more daunting task than Dante had. On the other hand, my design responsibilities are gradually growing, and I'm rising to the challenge well.

I'm working on a storytelling class for some upcoming SCA event. kestrell and I have just been to see a rare performance of Thomas of Woodstock.

March 2003
The cuteness level around kestrell and I has gotten nothing but more intense over the years. Marriage seemed like a good idea at the time, but we're just starting to realize how good.

I'm helping kestrell with her latin homework. We're spending a lot of time on the verbs "amo" and "basio" :-)

I've recently been officially appointed Lead Designer on The Lost, recognizing what has been de facto true for some time. The game itself is starting to firm up nicely; the legal morass surrounding the game remains sticky.

Getting ready to do stuff for Crossroads Faire.

March 2004
After finishing The Lost (July '03), I decided to try and start a new career in editing and/or publishing. Bad timing; in the current economy, no one wants to hire people with less than three years recent experience. I decide to go back to my first vocation. I beg Irrational Games to take me back. Haven't solidified a deal yet, but it looks likely that I could end up in an important design position on the Freedom Force franchise, which would seriously rock!

Karen has finally moved out. Mara would rather have a sewing/guest roiom again than another tenant, and thje contractors have just recently finished refurbishing what had been Karen's room.

Getting ready for a class at the Masked Ball ("Mythological Elements in the Matter of France").

kestrell is waiting on tenterhooks to find out if she's been accepted by MIT's Comparative Media Studies graduate program. We are re-reading A Civil Campaign together.

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Keen! Had to chuckle about some of the bits I remember talking about with you at the time. Maybe I'll find time to do my own 10 years.

S'funny, the way you write it, things seem to happen to you in February. Makes me wonder if that's just perspective or if More Stuff really did happen to you in Februaries than other months.

A lot of important stuff *did* happen in Februaries, at least from my perspective. I almost decided to make it be just Februaries, but decided on just including the relevant retrospectives.

Hm. I had a friend in college who routinely either started or ended relationships at Boskone, in February.

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