I foolishly went to bed at 5am last night, knowing I had to be awake around 10am for my dentist’s appointment. As luck would have it, I awoke at 9am for no discernible reason. I had trouble falling back asleep so I basically headed off to get my teeth looked at with only four hours of sleep.

The visit at the dentist didn’t take long. I also had a friend who lives basically across the street from the dentist’s office so I dropped by for a social call. My buddy wasn’t working today so it was nice to see him and have a quick chat. I got hungry so I left to get some lunch. It was getting late into the afternoon by this time and I didn’t want to get stuck in the beginning of the rush hour. Surprisingly, I didn’t fall asleep for too long on the train ride back from downtown.

I expected to nap before dinner but I didn’t feel tired enough. I headed back out to have a really enjoyable dinner with a friend and felt great during our meal. It was upon my return to home that I felt fatigue setting in again. I was watching an episode of Mythbusters when I nodded off during an explanation of how they were gonna blow something up. I have absolutely nothing planned for tomorrow and I’m looking forward to having some crazy good sleep. The plan is to wake up when most of you have already eaten lunch.


I have an appointment with my dentist at 12pm tomorrow. It’s not pleasant to visit the dentist even at the best of times but considering I’m typing this at 4am in the morning will make the appointment that much worse. The people at my dentist’s office tried very hard to get me to come in at 8am on multiple days but I wasn’t having any of that. I can’t imagine doing anything these days at 8am other than be sleeping. Only a true unemployed bum could write such a thing.

In other news, I bought my parents a new computer today. They’ve been using my old computer which I had since before 2002. It runs like a turtle in molasses. The total price after tax was about 40% of what I paid for my current computer. Though much cheaper, the majority of the components in this new computer are faster than what I have in my current rig, which I bought in 2008. That’s computers for you.

I really need to go to bed. There’s nothing more fun to wake up early for than a dentist’s appointment.


Congratulations to both the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and the B.C. Lions for putting on a great game for the 99th Grey Cup Championship game here in Vancouver on Sunday. The home team Lions ultimately took the top prize in the Canadian Football League. This was first time the Lions won the championship at home since 1994. Interestingly, back in 1994, the Vancouver Canucks lost the Stanley Cup in seven games. In 2011, the Canucks again lost the Stanley Cup seven games, which was then followed by the Lions victory. I’m happy for the Lions but I’d rather not see the Canucks lose another Stanley Cup Final as a precursor to the Lions’ Grey Cup triumph.

I was in the downtown core on both Friday and Saturday evenings. It appeared that all of western Canada had arrived for Grey Cup festivities. There were fans from Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, all very visible on downtown streets. Everyone was wearing jerseys from their respective teams. Of note, there appeared to be more green-clad Saskatchewan Roughrider fans than any others (including Lions and Blue Bombers supporters) in Vancouver this weekend. For them to turn out in huge numbers in Vancouver, even when their team wasn’t even playing, is a testament to the love of football that all of Saskatchewan has. It’s also possible that since Saskatchewan doesn’t have an NHL team, everyone just loves the Roughriders.

Anyways, I hope everyone who came from out of town had an awesome weekend in Vancouver. It was great seeing all the visitors!


Being unemployed allowed me to pick up my parents from the airport today. They were returning home from a trip to Hong Kong. I drove them from the airport back to their home. I also then went out to get them some lunch. After eating, my mother wanted to know what I wanted for dinner. As this was just 2pm, she implied that I was somehow going to hang around my parents’ home for four hours or so. I respectfully declined as I had stuff to do at my own home and I really didn’t want to find someway to amuse myself for four long hours at their home.

As soon as I got home, I felt very tired as I had woken up “early” to get to the airport on time. It was nap time! I love naps. After dinner, I played nearly four hours of Battlefield 3 with some friends. I’m living the dream… of a ten year old boy.


It was back to another day without an alarm clock and it was great. I woke up around 11am and felt like I needed more sleep so I willed myself back to sleepytime again. The next time I woke up was enough sleep for me.

I crawled out of my bed and made myself a salad for breakfast. That may seem weird but I have no responsibilities, no job, I sleep until I want to, and I spend most of my day in my PJs. Salad for breakfast just seems natural after that. While still in my PJs, I bought some RRSPs online. I did about five minutes of research before deciding on which funds to buy. As you can tell, I still have no idea what to do with money. Sometimes I’m surprised I have any money at all.

After feeling pretty good about doing serious business like buying RRSPs, I decided to take a break by watching some of the early NHL games that were starting on the east coast. I then needed to walk to the supermarket to get some stuff for dinner. I actually showered today because I needed to go outside. After showering, I went and bought my stuff. For those keeping score, I made Hamburger Helper salisbury tonight. Judge me all you want, HH salisbury is tasty.

With dinner out of the way, I then drove to Walmart to buy a bar stool. This was my first time buying furniture at Walmart. You might be wondering why I bought just one bar stool. As many of you know, I hate having my TV sitting on top of my fireplace mantle. I have to crane my neck up to see my TV. It’s ok when I’m watching non-interactive entertainment but when I’m playing video games, it’s hard on my eyes to have to frequently look up and also scan left and right at the same time. I get eye fatigue really easily. The best solution is to bring the TV down to my eye level and that would require getting rid of the fireplace mantle. That’s an expensive solution. As a stop-gap, I thought that instead of bringing the TV down to me, I could put myself higher. Sitting on the bar stool raises my eye level high enough that I feel much more comfortable. I actually own two other bar stools but those don’t have a back rest and they aren’t padded. This one is way more comfy. It’s obviously not a permanent solution but it’ll have to do for now while I figure out how to get rid of my fireplace.


It didn’t take me long to get into my natural sleeping cycle. I went to bed at 6am this morning. Perhaps it was a mistake to start cleaning my kitchen at 4am. I really did want to say I did something productive on my first day of unemployment. On the bright side, I did use a granite cleaner/polish on my kitchen countertops and they’re super shiny now. You can easily see reflections on their surface. Unfortunately, I started to get hungry while cleaning my kitchen. I had to move some stuff around and I grabbed a can of powdered won ton soup mix and I instantly wanted some won ton and noodle soup. I had neither won tons nor noodles so that sucked. Before rolling into bed at 6am, I looked outside from my windows. It was still dark but it’s amazing how many people are out and about at 6am. The major streets around my apartment were beginning to fill with traffic that probably wouldn’t die down until 10am.

Every day since Saturday I’ve been waking whenever my body tells me to wake up but this day was different. I’d scheduled a hair cut with the lady that is trained to cut hair. The appointment was for 2pm and going to bed at 6am meant there was a strong possibility that I might wake up too late to be on time. It pained me somewhat but I actually had to set my alarm again. I totally messed it up. I didn’t know it at the time but I screwed up the whole AM and PM thing. It’s a good thing I didn’t have a marathon to run or something. When I awoke, it was nearly 1pm which puzzled me because I wanted to be awake earlier. It was then I realized my mistake. I still got to my appointment on time but it always feels bad to know you didn’t set your alarm properly.

The rest of the day was uneventful. I had a nap around 5pm which was awesome. I then saw a movie with some friends and then had a bite to eat. I plan on getting to bed a bit earlier than 6am this morning. My last task before bed time is to make a list of things I need to do in the short term. I like making lists because it feels good to cross things off lists. Eat fried chicken? Done! Meet the person that delivers my mail? Done!


As many of you know, my last day of work at Radical was on Friday. What I didn’t write in my other posts was that Radical’s 20th anniversary party was on Friday night as well. It was a well-organized and impressive shindig at the Canvas Lounge. It wasn’t cheap to throw a party of that size but props to Radical spending the big bucks to celebrate an anniversary properly. I was most impressed with the hors d’oeuvres served at the party. The shrimp and scallops were my favourite.

The first part of the evening was devoted to current Radical employees only and I was lucky enough to be in that group. Someone said I was technically a Radical employee until midnight. Radical gave away a ton of door prizes, more than I expected them to. After 9pm rolled around, the party was then opened up to anyone who had previously worked at Radical. Lots of people showed up. Some I already knew from our interactions outside of Radical. There were plenty of people I didn’t know though. As you can imagine, when a company has been around for twenty years, there can be a quite a few former employees. The former employees seemed to really enjoy seeing their old co-workers again.

I left the party about an hour before closing time. I was really tired and had been standing on my feet for about four hours when I left. Classy right to the end, Radical gave everyone a taxi voucher so we could all get home safe and for free! I also took home a party favour. Throughout the lounge were sprinkled these glowing orbs with the Radical logo on it. They looked really cool and many people said there were gonna steal one before leaving. I was one of those people. You can see in the video above what they look like. I love brightly coloured things.


For the first time since the end of March of this year, I will wake up on a Monday as an unemployed bum. Being unemployed can stress people out but I’m feeling quite relaxed about the whole thing. It’s a good time for me to rest up, relax, and have time to do whatever I want. I have the luxury of waiting until the new year to figure out where I’ll be working next.

There will be, of course, changes to my lifestyle that will be quite obvious from day one. Working a game studio, especially near the end of a project, involves a daily whirlwind of bug fixing, design decisions, lots of e-mails, asking questions, answering questions, and generally taking care of business. All of this happening around 100 or so people at the same time. I’ll go from that hectic pace to something much less frenetic. On Monday, it’ll be just me and whatever I choose to do that day. My first free day might consist of me looking up apple pie recipes online. That could be my entire day and that would be ok.

The gaining of all this freedom obviously comes with some tradeoffs. It doesn’t take a Roberto Einstein to figure out I won’t have any money coming in any more but there are also not so obvious effects. The first is the amount of free food I ate at Radical. I probably ate breakfast at Radical five days a week for the last eight months or so. There were also many a lunch that I had free because of Radical as well. Near the end, I also ate dinner there because of OT. If you count up all the free eats I had while working, that was a lot of money I saved. Now I go back to having to buy all my own food.

I expect my electricity bill to go up going forward as well. When I spent eight plus hours at work, my home sat empty that entire time. That meant my lights were off and all my appliances were off or on stand-by. Now I’ll be home most of the day; that means lights and other stuff on for most of that time. My computer will be on more and so will my Xbox 360. It’ll be interesting to see how much more juice I use compared to last month.

The biggest adjustment, which could be viewed as a good or bad thing, is the amount of free time I’ll have to buy things. This isn’t really a surprise to me anymore. Anytime that I’ve transitioned from working hard to having copious amounts of free time, I’ve always started to spend more than usual. Idle hands usually lead to online shopping. I’m also susceptible to buying stuff just because I now have the time to interact with anything I buy, like new gadgets, kitchen appliances, and kittens.

Well, it’s almost 2:30am and there some other chore I need to get to. When its noon on Monday, think of me because I’ll probably be still asleep and warm in my bed.


Tomorrow is my last day of work at Radical Entertainment. After almost eight months, my contract has come to an end. It feels good to have finally taken a contract position to its intended conclusion. As many of you know, my first contract job didn’t work out so well.

Overall, working at Radical and on Prototype 2 was a great experience. The last two games I worked on, I was basically just going through the motions. While those two teams had great people, the work I was doing was boring and left me dissatisfied. I felt like my work made no real difference in the game. Things were completely different once I signed on with Radical. The work was interesting, utilized my strengths, allowed me to learn new skills, and at the end of the day, I felt like my efforts had a real, genuine impact on how the game plays. When Prototype 2 ships in April of 2012 I’ll be able to easily and proudly point out gameplay elements that I worked on.

My employment at Radical was a long time coming. I remember sending in a resume to apply for a testing position at Radical after my first year of university. I never even got a response back from them. I was finally able to close that loop with this job. As good as the work was, I also have to mention some of the great people that I was able to toil alongside with. I had a really good project manager. He is a very pragmatic, logical, and transparent guy when it comes to managing game development; an awesome guy to keep things under control. The lead programmer is my area is another solid individual. He knows our systems in great detail and was able to get me up to speed very quickly and never hesitated to answer any of my questions. It also helped that he has a good sense of humour. In general, I worked with extremely talented and nice people which made it quite easy to go to work every day.

My future might include another stint at Radical someday down the road but we’ll save that discussion for much, much later. For now, I’m just happy that I got the chance to work there for the last several months. Now it is time to relax and rest up.


In the Greater Vancouver area, we are currently experiencing an election campaign as the local municipalities are deciding on mayors, city councilors, school board trustees, and lunch ladies. In the mail, I received several pamphlets and other informational items from local candidates. Because these elections are far from the provincial and federal level, their campaigns tend to be less slick. In this day and age though, everyone has a web site which is encouraging, smart, and cost-effective for any candidate at any level. As I looked through all the election material, I also noticed nearly all the candidates had their own custom domains, another good sign that everyone was catching to the times. Candidates were no longer using Geocities to host their sites.

The one thing that stood out, like me at a lingerie store, was the use of candidate e-mail addresses. Though candidates managed to get their own custom domains, they listed their e-mail addresses from providers like Yahoo, Gmail, Shaw, and Telus. That’s just so disappointing. That’s like running a marathon at a record pace and then stopping 10 metres from the finish line. They got so close to having all their bases covered from an Internet perspective, only to look like someone who discovered the Internet last month. I’ve registered several domains in the past and basically every registrar will throw in a basic e-mail account for your domain for free. It’s essentially a no-brainer. If you registered, it requires almost no effort to set up Instead we get candidate e-mail addresses like Imagine e-mailing your questions about parking meters to a candidate with an address like that.

I know it makes no sense but I’d have a hard time voting for a candidate that setup their Internet presence that way. Again, it’s a stupid way to vote but I never claimed to be a smart individual. If you want to see examples of what I’m writing about, feel free to go to here, here, here, and here. To be fair, many candidates have a good and complete Internet presence. Also, having a web site and e-mail address out there is better than not having anything. I’m just getting old and cranky.