Even More Useless

As I may have mentioned once or twice before, I very much dig the neighborhood my new job is in. I almost fell over when I realized I’d somehow, for a month, overlooked the fact that a FLGS was right across the street.

I went in there for the first time today, helping a friend who played D&D years ago buy some stuff for his son, who was interested in learning how to play. I considered briefly having him sign up for the playtest, but I didn’t want to spook a brand new player with such things. I hooked him up with a D&D Essentials Rules Compendium. He wanted some adventures to run and some baddies to fight, so I suggested Monster Vault – a fine supplement I have used to great effect in my own game, chock full of stuff to kill and a low-level adventure.

We go up to pay, and the guy at the counter wrinkles his nose and goes “uhhhhhhh whyyy are you buying this”, pointing at Monster Vault. And I explain, my friend’s son is learning to play and these are starter materials. He wrinkles his nose harder, and says “I uuuhhhhh this is useless for a player”. I’m starting to get irritated, but I explain a little further. “He doesn’t have a group yet. He might DM or play, we’re not sure yet.”

This yielded an eyeroll, and an unprecedented LEVEL THREE NOSE WRINKLE. “This is even more useless then. I don’t know why you’re suggesting he buy this. Yeahhhh I dunno, I just…. I dunno….”

I thought about arguing, but I tried simply listening. No alternate suggestions or anything useful happened. Just “uhhhhhhh” filled with derision. This lasted for a good minute, laced with the finest awkward tension available over-the-counter.

There was a part of me that was curious what this guy wanted us to buy instead. That part was crushed by the part of me that wanted to scream “HOLY COMIC BOOK GUY STEREOTYPE BATMAN DO YOU HAVE AN ALLERGY TO THE MONEY OF CUSTOMERS WHAT IN THE NAME OF PELOR IS YOUR PROBLEM!!???!!?”

Instead, I simply said “I think we’re good. Let’s check out.”

I hope that guy wasn’t the owner. I am disinclined to return to that place, and that makes me sad.


WotC Vampires & Obamachucks

Couple really damn weird dreams this weekend.

The Origin Story

I dreamt I was watching a documentary about Greg Bilsland, one of the producers at Wizards of the Coast.

In it was the story of how he became a vampire. It wasn’t a long story. He was standing in a room next to a powered-down arcade cabinet, and the lights got dim and a disembodied voice asked “do you like games that are relaxing?”. Then black stuff swirled everywhere and it got scary and I knew he’d become a vampire.

I don’t remember much else, but I remember the narrator saying “how strange it is that a member of the damned has taken the game of D&D so far away from its Satanic roots”.

Michelangelo Clearly Voted Blue

This was a long dream, most of which I don’t remember. It was something about renting out my grandmother’s old house and hating the new tenants or something. I was just happy, as usual, to get to hang out in there for a little while again. I wouldn’t exactly call it lucid dreaming because I’m not really aware at the time that’s what’s going on, but I always feel like it’s the latest in a series of me cheating fate and going back in time.

At one point, I don’t know exactly when, aliens took over the Earth and pretty much blew up everything and I was part of the resistance. I found myself on the White House lawn, and President Obama was lying there, unconscious and armless, on the ground. Mitt Romney was also there, gesturing menacingly at everyone. Turns out he had allied himself with the aliens to get revenge for losing the election, they’d given him superpowers. Though Obama had fought valiantly, Mitt ripped his arms off and was preparing to finish him off as I arrived.

Well, I couldn’t let that stand. So I did what any rational red-blooded American would do:

I shrunk the President down to 2′ long, and I started using him as a pair of nunchaku.

I’m not sure how effective this was against Romney. I deftly evaded his rage-filled swings and struck him repeatedly with the President right on the Reed Richards grey part of his head, but it didn’t seem to be slowing him down much. It must have done something, because he soon changed to what I recognized as his “secret Mexican attack” — waving a Southwestern-themed throw rug at me, possibly trying to flop it on my head.

I woke up before the final outcome of the battle, but I know I felt like I was losing. I may have voted for Obama as President, but I would definitely not vote for him again as a melee weapon.