This is a collection of notes to myself and (mostly) daily ruminations of my personal happenings to get me back into the habit of writing again.
No guarantees can be made for your interest in what lies beyond, in fact there's a very real danger of it actually sucking in interest from the surrounding area.
It was inevitable, at some point, that I was going to have my sassy blue-haired huntress make another appearance in World of Warcraft. Having been associated with that game to varying degrees since the early days of the Burning Crusade expansion, it occupies too large a place in my overall gaming life to even consider being blasé about turning up for the tenth anniversary, because yay the decimal counting system. Numbers that end in zeroes, they’re always special.
Some nostalgia-laden posts getting all misty-eyes about my history with Azeroth coming up, but the big first thing is the newly revamped character models. Maybe I have low standards and, with my preference for the more basic end of the indie game market, I certainly have no qualms with the world design as far as Not Looking Like A Game From 2005 goes, but those early vanilla models were looking very dated. So how’re my beloved night elves doing?
Eeeeee, I dunno. My first reaction was of mild disappointment. The sassy, idly chewin’ on nothing like Rizzo from Grease has been replaced with an expression that anchors itself somewhere between smugly self-satisfied and “Well, silver lining, my face-lift operation was mostly a success. Mostly”.
It’s probably just a matter of getting used to changes in something that I’ve become so attached to, I’m not throwing the night elf baby out with the moonwell water just yet. I don’t have any human characters - well, I had a human warlock but she got into a, shall we say, situation while out drinking and, long story short, she’s now worgen - but they look amazing, and I’m very impressed with the facial expressions in all the races I’ve seen.
Other than that, a lot of my time so far in game has been getting a shaman, druid and warlock up from level 88 to 90 and completely reworking my UI which, in many ways for me, is a game in itself finding that perfect, clean, non-intrusive interface that does everything I need in a manner that is, above all else, tidy. I had it before but, eh, that design is so 2012. Goldpaw, that is all I’ll say there.
I can… I can feel myself being pulled back in. Hay-ulp.
It’s three months until my 40th birthday and already I’m avoiding almost all numbers with a four in them from being given the chance to tumble from my mouth-hole. It’s just a mad number, and as much as They say that age is just a number - and I agree with them in essence - it’s just a number that suggests I could have, or maybe should have, accomplished a lot more with my life than I have. Unsurprisingly, like almost everyone else who came before me, the very last thing I feel is “approaching forty” and what should that even feel like anyway?
I mean, I’m single, barely had any relationships due to my personal battles with my gender identity and still working at effectively the bottom rung of basic retail for a pittance of an income, all in all living up to the title of Most Likely To Die A Spinster Surrounded By Cats. “Personal battles with my gender identity” sounds like a cop-out even when framed with the fact that I always play my own troubles down and think “Eh, could be worse I suppose”.
But as much as being transgender is kind of beginning to get off the ground with mainstream public acceptance now, I knew I needed to do this finally doing back in my early twenties, or even earlier if I’d read the signs properly. The few attempts in that time to actually do something about myself were either knocked back by my overwhelming lack of self-confidence, the “Let’s all laugh at the ridiculous man in a dress” public opinion, and/or ineffectual people on the NHS not really knowing what to do with me.
But, like They say, there’s no point in bemoaning the fact that I could have started living my life a lot earlier when I’m actually doing it now and after all, pulling on that thread makes the whole world unravel, plus many other platitudes designed to calm the senses in a way that still doesn’t hold a candle to the therapeutic effects of a bottle of gin. All I will say is, the people who say they wouldn’t change a thing if they got to live their life again are probably lying.
But I digress. A three-month advance party notice has been posted as an event to my friends on The Face Book called “Angela is ten years being with her life so technically she’s 30”, and that’s being conservative with the numbers. I reckon with a good solicitor I could shave another five years off that.
My last few birthdays have barely been celebrated, I’m not in touch with my family any more so any excitement from that side wasn’t happening. I’d have maybe a couple of presents from friends and a bit of cake washed down with cheap, dirty booze, it was lovely enough at the time. Certainly in my thirties there really was little point in marking the birthdays that didn’t fall on round numbers when any night of the week was usually excuse enough to get blind drunk.
Conversely, any number that has a naught in it requires an aftermath of waking up with an epic hangover next to a bin in a city miles from home. That’s exactly what it says in the rules that I have just made up, so it’s entirely out of my hands.
And anyway, sitting up in bed watching various besuited, floppy marketing cocks in The Apprentice, with their blank stare perpetually fixed on “The Prize, yeah?”, is enough to make me feel good about the fact that I’ve never really made the focus of my life about financial success.
There’s one guy on here that claims, in the most annoying, clipped by extreme business-smugness voice ever, his worst nightmare is “getting to my fortieth birthday with a fifty grand salary and a four-year-old Toyota, yeah? It’s just not going to happen”. Cock! Mine involves warm, fresh, fluffy towels after a shower being filled with spiders.
I still can’t even drive, but at lest I can legitimately claim to have Liz Lemon as my own person spirit animal.
Starting a week off work with an evening shift in the petrol station, with more on Tuesday, Friday and Saturday, it’s not so much a week off as it is just another regular week. Sure, it would have been nice for my employer, Britain’s Fair Trade Supermarket, to have put the current maternity leave cover as an extended, temporary contract but they didn’t. So there it is, my contacted holiday entitlement is a spooky ghost. It’s there, but it’s not.
And over the course of a five hour shift, I managed to get through the lion’s share of a pack of chocolate digestives then felt very bad about it. This is precisely the reason why I never have such things around my flat, because my willpower is shot to buggery and I’ll go at them like Ms. Pac-Man going for the top of the high score table. If anything gets eaten when I’m at home, it doesn’t happen without at least ten minutes of cook and stroke or preparation time because it’s the only system that bypasses my loose snacking morals.
Tell you what though, willpower be damned, today is a small celebration, perhaps a single party popper or maybe even a decadent volume of chocolate digestive consumption, to mark the second full year since I quit smoking. The first two days were absolute hell, the following week was difficult and not nice, every day since then has been progressively more wonderful. I always thought, before I quit, that it would be a need that would never really go away but I can honestly say that being able to wake up, got through a day, ten go back to bed without ever once having to stop everything in order to inhale smoke is infinitely more enjoyable and satisfying than smoking ever was. Take that, stupid, pre-2012 me.
And this October, I’m currently halfway though a whole month of not drinking, something I haven’t done since my early days of kicking the cigarette habit because the two were so strongly associated in my mind as being perfect partners, the thought of it being a gateway to getting back on the fags terrified me.
Maybe next October I’ll try to give up chocolate digestives, but I’m worried I might celebrate that small victory with crack cocaine.
From waking up early yesterday afternoon to bedtime at 4am, given a lazy Sunday with not much going on, I’ve spent the whole time in my pyjamas, drinking tea and playing video games and “doing internet”. Basically spent the whole day on my arse.
I like games, a fact that is more than amply proven by my Raptr profile, but whether that includes me in some kind of “Gamer Culture” which somehow unifies the ideals and standards of millions, nay, billions of people is doubtful. I haven’t even played Destiny.
Last week, the Daily Mail reported the plans by the UK government to withdraw from the European Human Rights Act under the headline “A Great Week For British Culture” and I felt a sharp, stabbing pain in my sense of fairness, followed by a low, rumbling sense of dread.
There are far too many people living in different social and economic conditions in England alone to even think about throwing it together into a single culture but that’s not something that the award-winningly stuffy Daily Mail needs to care about, catering instead purely to the culture of the militantly white population of “Middle England”, largely known for being generally intolerant of change, other races and almost everything else including their next door neighbour.
I like tea. No, I really like it a lot. Currently I’m on a Chai kick, it’s by Twinings and it’s lightly spiced with a wonderful peppery after taste, and I find it’s always nice to keep some Lapsang Souching around for emergencies like, for example, when the first thing you smell on a morning is sour milk. I’ve even got a heat-retaining travel mug so I can enjoy a cup of tea on the way to work.
I’m often to be found on the hot beverages aisle of my various local grocery stores, seeking out new teas; often-times I’ll watch videos on YouTube where people show off their tea collection or review new blends; all in all a great deal of my free time is spent drinking various leaves that have been allowed to soak in boiling water.
Yeah, of course, there’s a lot of problems with the casual tea drinkers who claim to like tea but they show up with peppermint or acai berry and they’re NOT tea, they’re INFUSIONS and they ANNOY ME SO HARD. Just because it’s sold in a perforated paper bag and it prepared with the use of a kettle, it’s not the same and shall never be.
But with all that said, I don’t think such a thing as a “Tea Culture” even exists. Which is a shame, because that would be lovely.
Mmm. Tea culture. We are alive.
With just under six weeks to go until vaginoplasty surgery - or V Day, as only I am calling it - I’m off the oestrogen patches, because their lovable scamp manner of thinning the blood does not sit well with precision scalpel work.
So, naturally, with just shy of two years of uninterrupted oestrogen consumption recorded, the big irrational fear is that six weeks without is going to send me all the way back to square one. “I mean, I swear, if just one ounce of junk comes out of that proud trunk I’ve been working on, I am going to flip a table, just watch me”.
Didn’t stop me from going to my local GP today to enquire about my three-monthly prescription re-up though. No, I don’t need them right now but this is a golden opportunity to build up a modest backup stash.
You know, should the fall of civilisation happen by whatever means, zombie apocalypse or major anti-establishment blood-letting (as is increasingly inevitable), I’m going to need that comfortable buffer zone before my rag-tag band of renegades and I are forced to emerge from the trenches and brave the wasteland in order to find and loot a clinic.
So just so you know, I’ve got all eventualities covered.