?

Log in

 
 
10 October 2006 @ 08:38 am
Fic pages, Crack, and the Oregon Trail  
Thought I was going to do some writing yesterday, but I made two banners for my fic pages instead. Quite the challenge, since I have crappy tools and no experience, BUT... I've split my fics off into a main access page and four sub-pages now (been meaning to do this for about 6 months now). Still need banners for the Prison Break ones (and maybe a better SPN Slash banner), and I might ask some folks on the f-list for help with that. katipl made me some gorgeous Prison Break award banners, and the "Gen Fiction" one tempts me. Little problem with the LJ Scrapbook function right now, though (I've filed a bug report).

My husband bought the kids the "Oregon Trail v.5" video game. My daughter screeched in frustration all Saturday morning (this is the 9-year-old, and apparently throwing a fit is the only response to being frustrated. Reading the manual and "help" info is not). My son (who is 7) got immediately hooked, and has made steady progress. Saturday afternoon he came to tell me that all his people had frozen to death in the Winter, and when I checked in on him 15 minutes later he was busy buying winter coats and scarves at a store along the way. Sunday he told me that "David" (one of his game children) keeps dying, even though it's a different David every time. Christopher has relentlessly hunted meat, slaughtered draft animals, and looked for edible plants for David, and still David dies. Sunday night, he wrote "David" in the bathroom mirror steam, and when my husband looked at it funny I said "David is Christopher's doomed child." That got a bigger funny look.

The thing about kids is, half the stuff they say or do is absolutely random and bizarre if you have no context for it. And even if you do, it's often still pretty weird.

If you haven't read the second SPN Pirate CrackFic... what are you waiting for? You're killing me here!

And speaking of crack... we rented Hoodwinked (mainly because Patrick Warburton is one of the voices, and the man is hilarious). That is one funny-weird cracked-out movie. The singing goat is the best part, IMO, but the whole thing is random and worth seeing. :)
 
 
 
(Anonymous) on October 10th, 2006 03:53 pm (UTC)
It's so good to know two things... One that it's not only my kids who play games like this and get hooked. We are still doing Zoo Tycoon here which is building a zoo and then you do all sorts of great and wonderful things to bring to your zoo. Like build crappy fences for your lions and then have them escape and eat your guest. I have suggested that maybe that's not the best way to gain customers and my oldest (7) says people will come because there is an element of danger......

The other thing is that someone else out there liked Hoodwinked...We saw it at the movie theatre when it came out. Oh the randomness of that movie..It ROCKED!

Banners, LJ look pretty...I wish I had the patience.
Come on in, the water's bloody.lemmypie on October 10th, 2006 03:55 pm (UTC)
That's me! Lemmypie!
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Venushalfshellvenus on October 10th, 2006 05:01 pm (UTC)
:D I didn't know you had kids, lemmypie!

"Zoo Tycoon" sounds like something my 7-year-old would love. :) When he was at preschool, he and some of the other 4-5 year olds had some scheme in mind to build their own zoo, by sneaking out at night (on their training-wheel-based bicycles) and capturing animals. Using a broom and a net. (!) Later, they decided it would be easier to steal the animals from the Sacramento Zoo instead. I think a zoo where the animals escape would be right up Christopher's alley. :0

"Hoodwinked" was SO funny. That goat cracked me up. And the hyper squirrel. And the fake actor-lumberjack who ran the Schnitzel wagon. And I loved that all the random parts you saw in one person's story were eventually explained in another person's story. :D In.Sane.

Glad you like the banners-- the really good one is by exsequar. The others are mine, and I like the SPN Slash one except that the black is really black. I kept trying to decide whether to add more pics into the base, but really-- that single picture is so perfect and evocative on its own. However, also too small, hence the black background.

Well, it's a learning experience, that's for sure. As in, when you "save" your work it's one thing (because you can still modify and undo it). When you CLOSE it, it's frozen. Grrr.
bluesister on October 10th, 2006 03:54 pm (UTC)
I remember Oregon Trail! I must have played the 2.0 version. The doomed child situation sounds like a M. Night Shyamalan plot. I hope your son finds a solution soon. Citrus?
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Venushalfshellvenus on October 10th, 2006 05:05 pm (UTC)
remember Oregon Trail! I must have played the 2.0 version. The doomed child situation sounds like a M. Night Shyamalan plot. I hope your son finds a solution soon. Citrus?

Don't you just wonder if the software programmers had some running gag in mind of, "Name your child David and we'll find a way to kill him"? Because I asked Christopher, "Does the game choose the names?" (as in, stop picking the David one). He said no-- you name the kids yourself.

So far, we have not been able to persuade either child that taking fewer than the max 4 kids would simplify things (less food to carry, fewer resource worries in general). And the citrus thing! Where else do people get vitamin C that isn't in citrus? Currants? There must be other fruits (maybe a vegetable-- tomatoes) to get that from, because it was nearly impossible to ship/transport anything that didn't grow locally back then. Everybody would have gotten scurvy.

My husband came in giggling to me Saturday morning, because within half-an-hour of play the kids had had to dump the cast-iron stove out of the wagon for being too heavy, and it just seemed such a classic kid mistake to me. :D
bluesister on October 10th, 2006 06:44 pm (UTC)
They took the stove on the wagon?! That wasn't very nice to give as an option. I can see where a child would think it necessary 'cause how can you cook without a stove?

Dried cranberries, maybe? Probably everyone *was* sickly.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Venushalfshellvenus on October 10th, 2006 06:52 pm (UTC)
They took the stove on the wagon?! That wasn't very nice to give as an option. I can see where a child would think it necessary 'cause how can you cook without a stove?
Apparently a fair number of people DID try to take them in the wagons (because where would they get one out West?), which is why it's in there.

That SPN Oregon fic I wrote mentions the framed poster in the Frenchglen Hotel that talks about what to bring and NOT to bring on the Oregon Trail, and the notice included mention of dressers and other furniture strewn along the trail by people who'd had to dump part of their load out. I imagine there were people happy to set up homesteads ALONG the trail and periodically check the leavings. "Look, Maw-- I got us a sewin' machine today!" What a bonanza for them. :0

Did you read Pirate ficcy #2? It's actually funny...

Now I'm wasting time perusing the Web for the Oregon Trail route, because I just can't imagine that there wasn't a better way to cross the Oregon/Idaho border than across the Snake River. Unless they did it really far south. I mean, hello-- Hell's Canyon IS the border up north. It's a mile deep in some spots. :0
bluesister on October 10th, 2006 08:07 pm (UTC)
You'd think the name of Hell's Canyon would be a hint! ;)

I've heard that about all the furniture dropped along the way. And I guess some is still sitting out there. Like the original Freecycle.

The piano I grew up with travelled from NYC to SF in the 1880s by ship, going around South America. So if these people had just been patient... And the furriers and whalers of Russia and Japan and Hawaii had been going up and down the coast for awhile by then. They could have added some household items to the holds and branched out!
bluesister on October 10th, 2006 08:12 pm (UTC)
And I read Pirate Fic #2 but it's still the romance version that makes my heart go pitter-pat. I'm such a goof.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: SN Lovershalfshellvenus on October 11th, 2006 08:32 pm (UTC)
but it's still the romance version that makes my heart go pitter-pat. I'm such a goof.
I think the second one is better (and funnier), but I like the first one too, and I posted it up because I'm a hopeless romantic sap as well. ;)
Cody: Geekinessmercurybard on October 10th, 2006 05:10 pm (UTC)
Oh, how fondly I remember those days when we could play Oregon Trail in the school computer lab if we finished whatever else we were doing. It was a fun game. I must have been playing an older version though. My brother and I figured out how to get to Oregon fast and with the whole party intact almost everytime.

Maybe I should look into finding the new version, just for kicks and giggles.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Venushalfshellvenus on October 10th, 2006 06:53 pm (UTC)
Apparently, it's been around for awhile and updated over the years.

Seemed like I was hearing it all weekend-- "Well, from the sound of endless fiddling I'm guessing that Christopher is out on the Trail again."

He's sure loving it. He likes the hunting part a little too much. And he's definitely caught onto the 'correcting prior mistakes' part of it. ;)
Cody: JustGoofymercurybard on October 10th, 2006 10:41 pm (UTC)
And he's definitely caught onto the 'correcting prior mistakes' part of it. ;)

See...he's learning something! Who says video games aren't educational?
miss_mandy on October 10th, 2006 07:14 pm (UTC)
Me and my friend used to play Oregon Trail (probably one of the first versions or something) all the time in school.

We were really cruel though. We would constantly go through the water instead of around it and try and kill off everyone. Then when it was just one person left, a friendly Native would come and give us berries and that's how we'd survive.

Coincidentally the last person left was always named after us or our latest crush at the time.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Sam & Dean Genhalfshellvenus on October 11th, 2006 08:33 pm (UTC)
We were really cruel though. We would constantly go through the water instead of around it and try and kill off everyone.
That is seriously evil. And funny!

Apparently, death is (mostly) inevitable in this game. Much like actual life, back then! :0
     Mandya_phoenixdragon on October 10th, 2006 08:11 pm (UTC)
Sunday night, he wrote "David" in the bathroom mirror steam, and when my husband looked at it funny I said "David is Christopher's doomed child." That got a bigger funny look.

Bwhhaahahahahahaaaa!!

I'm sorry *sniffles* I know that's not funny...

*Snickers*

*Hugs Christopher...*

*Snuggles you*
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors: Venushalfshellvenus on October 11th, 2006 09:11 pm (UTC)
I'm sorry *sniffles* I know that's not funny...
I actually DO find it kind of funny, though I probably shouldn't.

Christopher was okay with it Sunday. But last night, when people were dying right and left on him, there were tears of despair! I think he feels like a failure as a junior Daddy. :0

But he does pick up new tricks for success every time through, and heaven knows he's relentless! :)
     Mandya_phoenixdragon on October 11th, 2006 09:56 pm (UTC)
Poor thing!! Tell him to keep pluggin' away - he'll get it soon!!

*Pets his hair*

*Snuggles you*