You've never been inclined to seek relationships. Your motivation to work at it was only slightly more than your motivation to pass integral calculus.\n\nYou like to //know// people, for sure. You have always enjoyed being the observer of the group. There are plenty of desires, but you aren't very proactive about them. Your experiences to date have come more from "falling into them" than a lot of directed effort.\n\nPerhaps if you were less confused about your personal interactions, you would be less confused about your work too.\n\nOr is it the other way around?\n\n[[*|Chickens]]
Somehow you had gotten in contact again with Kyle, a guy that you knew from all that time playing //Dance Dance Revolution// down at the boardwalk. The game had faded away from you in your post-collegate life, though you still ventured to play it now and then.\n\nKyle came over and you chatted a little, talked music a little bit, played with your synth gear, went down to the corner store to get $4 burritos. But mostly you listened to his problems.\n\nHe was in a bad way. You remembered him being more of an arrogant bastard, a proud competitor, and generally on the up-and-up, but times had gotten tougher recently. \n\nHe tried living in San Francisco for a while, but got in a car accident and busted up his shoulder. Not able to keep up rent there, he returned to his parents here...but his parents could do little to help him. Their livelihood was in real estate, and when the market went down they quickly fell into financial trouble themselves. Kyle spent a lot of time locked in his room, trying to bury himself in making music, trying to ignore the vicious arguments he heard every day. They were going to divorce.\n\nYou part amicably, but after that day you never talk to Kyle again. You don't know what happened. But you can see...especially after everything that happened to you in the past year...after all the broken people you have interacted with...after allowing the breaks to creep into yourself...and somehow surviving with some amount of freedom...\n\n[[You are so lucky.|Dawn]]
Sometimes it's in the day. More often, lately, it's at night, any hour. After all, you have no obligations. And so you go, submerged in darkness.\n\nApart from a few old co-workers, you don't have many ties to the town outside of the university. You went to school here, but it's completely different if you aren't going to school. Namely, there's little to do. Especially since you're going out so late, most of the time.\n\nDo you visit the bright lights of [[CVS]]? Or perhaps [[Safeway]]? Or maybe it's the daytime, so you can go to [[Borders]].
Rico\n\nBy Triplefox\n\n2013\n\nThis story is 95% truthful. The other 5% is artful.
Rico is barking again. Wuff. //pause// Wuff wuff. //pause// Wuff wuff wuff... //repeat//\n \nYou cannot really blame him for this. You would be awfully bored if you lived his life, too. And yet, what is to be done about it?\n\nYou go placate him for a little while, try to nap, and wake in the middle of the night.\n\n[[Leave.|While Going For Pizza]]
It is a cool spring evening, only a month or so before you complete the game. You sit in Cafe Pergolesi, drinking jasmine ice tea, pounding away at the game.\n\nWhat you remember most about this particular evening is the guy sitting next to you. Somehow you strike up conversation, about the game and what you're doing. He says he only plays //World of Warcraft// now. Why?\n\n''"Because it's cheap."''\n\nYou have no arguments.\n\n[[The game is finished.]]
The flourescent lights and well-stocked shelves suggest that these things might have meaning to you. This has become a ritual affair. Goods for every concievable need, but nothing you particularly want, except maybe a snack or something to drink. Or if you are feeling particularly cheap, the water fountain.\n \nYou wander the aisles looking for the meaning of it all... but ultimately must move on, unsatisfied.\n\n<<back "daily walk." 1>>
You have always wanted to try crossing the Santa Cruz mountains by hiking. You've estimated it to take roughly a full day, if one gets up early.\n\nAs it is, it's probably too cold right now. Why not go on another night walk? \n\n[[Leave.|Cold Nights]]
Rico is a big black-furred German Shepherd. He resides strictly in the backyard of your landlady, Neli, and neither Neli nor the other renters(who come and go rather quickly) endeavor to take him on walks or other structured activities. He is obviously lonely, though, and sometimes you will play with him to calm him down...after all, if you don't, he'll easily spend over an hour barking or howling in his preferred position: against a driveway gate looking down towards Capitola Road.\n\n<<back "Your Room" 1>>
His extended family apparently constantly borrow money from each other. There is harassment, and suggestions of abuse, though he clamps up around that. To hear him speak of it, it seems like there is nastiness all around this family. He wants to get away from his mom, but he isn't even a citizen yet.\n\nHe wants to get a Macbook Pro. You tell him that he has no reason to get a Macbook Pro, and you could probably sell him your old netbook instead. He wants the Macbook Pro, though. He outright wants a //status symbol//. For some people this would mean jewelry or clothing, but for Dave it means having Apple product. He wants to show up his brother or something. And in the end, after saving for months and months, he gets one.\n\nAnd he has not one, not two, but three dogs. An enormous amount of his time is spent cleaning up after them. All three live indoors, and the household policy is to remain spotless at all times. If you put in a tenth of the effort that Dave does on cleaning, your room would probably look pretty good.\n\n[[*|Finish the game.]]
One agitated morning, Dave calls and wants you to meet him at the library to talk about something. He was feeling down about something again, you knew, and you were going to help him absorb the blow again. You didn't have the strength for this.\n\nSo you come down there, and take a seat, but before he can get into it, you tell him what's on your mind, how his call made you think "Oh, Dave...here we go again."\n\nIn that instant you realize that you have exposed your pity. You will never be friends with him again, because you have, in a swift, unexpected blow, presented too many painful truths about the inequality of this relationship - you, you could always go find another gig and move on. He is stuck, and far too proud for pity. He desperately wants to be the privileged one, here. His actions have always shown that.\n\nMeanwhile, you despise the inequality, and with that optimism, you had managed to keep alive some hope that it was solvable. But the only thing that happened was collective illusionment.\n\nIt was just like with [[the girl]], a few months before. It was just like the stocks, [[now]].\n
You stare up at the ceiling fan. The fan's not in good shape, and makes rhythmic clicky noises at you. At least the light bulb hasn't gone out. You don't want to have to fix the bulb.\n \nSomehow your room keeps getting more and more crowded. When you first moved in you actually had space to walk. Then you accumulated a chair and books and a dresser and stacking shelves and more stacking shelves and a nightstand and an old minifridge and another chair and an old TV and...\n \n...a lot of this can be attributed to Neli's generosity. You don't actually want most of this stuff. You only got your bed, one chair and the shelves for yourself. When you tried to run the fridge Neli complained about the electricity bill being twice as high that month. It sits there, uselessly.\n\n[[Leave.|Restaurant]]
Borders is one of your favorite hangouts, because you can just sit and read for hours. \n\nRegular purchases of $1 waters and $2 coffees have led to your reading through all the interesting programming books on display. You have started on the uninteresting ones. Occasionally you branch out into other subjects. You try to be a bit practical with your reading, although the more of that you do, the less you get out of it.\n\n[[Return.|Neli]]
One of the more colorful renters that passed through Neli's domain was a very tall guy - six foot one hundred or so. You don't remember his name, so he shall remain "Tall Guy" forever. He had come to Santa Cruz to drink and smoke pot, and his behavior annoyed Neli to no end. He had no obligations, because, in his words, his dad "had many businesses." And so he would just go work in one of those when he felt like it.\n\nHe was clearly even more adrift than you were, yet his attitude remained cheerfully sloven. And that irritated you more than anything else.\n\nYou saw many people in town behaving like this. They would casually steal or vandalize. They didn't care. They'd be somewhere else tomorrow.\n\n<<back "Get out of my town!" 1>>
The yard is covered with detritus from Neli's ex. An alcoholic, he succeeded in collecting quite a lot of useless scrap. Although some of it has been cleared, there's still a forklift, sheets of metal, bricks, a boat, a car...\n\nIncreasingly, it makes you think of your own room.\n\n<<back "Chickens" 1>>
The room is full of detritus now. There is a slight smell of mildew and you can't determine the source, so you tend to keep the window open more and more. Lots of old reciepts, empty water bottles, boxes you got from Amazon deliveries. Too many clothes, too many //things//. How did you get so many things?\n\n<html>\n<iframe width="420" height="315" \nsrc="http://www.youtube.com/embed/N81UChK78WY" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen>\n</iframe>\n</html>\n \nYou will listen to this song some more.\n\n[[Leave.|On the Curb]]
Two years later you will find yourself in almost the same situation, and you want to calm the guy down. And it's easy. You just make him //belong//.\n\nBut, it didn't work out that way this time. You were feeling hostile.\n\n"[[Get out of my town!]]"\n \nThis doesn't go over very well with him, as it turns out he grew up there. Yet you're both going the same direction. An awkward, painful tension emerges, where you remain silent and he curses, until he finally jaywalks a light to get away from you.\n \n[[Yeah, that wasn't a good move.|Get out of my town!]]\n
The whole time, you have occupied yourself with the idea of being "better" at game making, on some kind of objective/technical skills level. Thus you have committed to a solo project, with your own code, design, art, and sound. You didn't know when you were overextending yourself. Maybe you had to try to find out.\n\nAs well, this situation made you comfortable in overreaching, since in any previous moment in your life, making your own game was a side project and forced a certain measure of humility in place. Now there was nothing but some vague schedule. You were free to make every mistake.\n\nThe error of trying to do too much did not seem like an error until you were almost done - at which point you realized it had served to ruin everything. There were brief snippets of expression in the game, things you genuinely liked, but with so many overlapping goals and a scope stretched across a tiny number of assets, none of it really worked and you will find it all a bit embarassing later. \n\n[[Return.|Hiding]]
Lifted to safety at the last instant. A helpless blind dog, he quivers a little at the environment of your lap, and then starts licking your jeans.\n \nCan you imagine what would have happened if that whole scheme had actually worked? It probably would have just made you more guilty than you already are. \n\nYou don't have to imagine the opposite, of completely failing and having no safety net, because you've already seen it.\n\n[[One Summer Before...]]
Neli's activities were wholly inscrutable to you. Although you had the one room and there were occasionally one or two other people renting, the house was clearly her domain. When leaving on a cruise with her boyfriend Thomas, she would leave you with chores: Water the plants, feed Rico, feed the chickens. Somewhere over 50 years old and a decent English student despite coming from Brazil in adulthood, she didn't always have great judgment(her first marriage ended quite badly), but she certainly knew how to be a boss.\n\nThe relation between Neli and Thomas was as opaque as Neli herself. He drove a BMW, and worked with Neli on her real estate business, though they didn't share finances - not as far as you knew, anyway. But they did go on quite a few cruises. They got into frequent arguments. They were kind enough to you, but their own relationship seemed full of contradictions, and in the end, you had no particular stake in it. You just wanted to be alone in your room, perhaps listening to the traffic woosh by, going on to better places. Like over the mountains.\n\nYou started putting up with this house, at first, because Neli's son was at your office so you had a good recommendation. And then later you became apathetic about the flaws - she would put up quite a fuss if you tried to move to another place in town. And the price and location were acceptable enough, and they weren't truly bad people.\n\nMaybe when you finish this game, you will go [[somewhere else.]]
Trying to avoid Neli, you decide you'll leave through the window today. As you carefully extract yourself, you see Rico staring at you from down the driveway, behind his favorite spot. Maybe we aren't that much different, are we...?\n\n[[*|Dave]]
Really, you misunderstood what kind of person you were dealing with. You had this phrase in mind for the [[people who came in on the weekend to wreck up the town]] - not the locals who profited off of them.\n\nYou may not have grown up here, and yet at the same time you have a love and respect for the area, despite a relatively shallow understanding of its people and its history. But you realize later, you have always been embroiled in conflicts that have run through this town for decades. The university vs. the locals; the heavy shadow of the Boardwalk on the economy; tensions between the older farming communities and the new immigrants...\n\n[[Maybe what set you off was that you just wanted to be alone.|Yeah, that wasn't a good move.]]
A man with a cherubic, round face approaches you as you sit down in Borders. You've seen him around before, the both of you abusing the Borders book cafe these past months. Dave. He wants to hang out. Why not.\n \nDave has lived in California nearly all his life. After spending his twenties doing odd jobs and difficult labor, he is now on disability, aged 30, living with his single mother. He might finally be able to get citizenship soon.\n \nHe is too scared, he says, to create. He has ideas for jokes, for poems. Something terrible is cutting him off from any self-expression. He says it was moving here from Palm Springs that did it, but you will never know the truth. He believes in an unlikely image of himself, as a better and kinder person than what you observe. But there is some common ground in the alienation. You start to hang out frequently.\n \n[[Bark bark bark.]]
The game, titled //Deep Sea Descent//, is actually the third iteration of the game. The first two were made as a student. The basic concept was one of piloting a submarine from a 2d view - shooting and exploring. A little blue world. Each time you've tweaked the concept, and this time you decided you would try for a more elaborate production, even though you had no budget. By January you are about halfway through, and as you continue you start rushing things more and more.\n\nSadly, the best iteration of it is still the first, which you made in Game Maker in three days. You don't have access to it now, as it is stuck on an older computer.\n\n[[*|Your Room]]
Rico
It was not all bad to make bad games. You had a "designer" position, employed churning out glorified shovelware(though the studio had ambitions of more). The fun was in the puzzle of cutting down the game without completely destroying it. The worst part was the crunch, which made the first six months of your working life so distorted that it took years to regain some balance; the consequences of that moment have rippled through to today. You had struggled mightily to secure housing - and had a crisis with that, twice over, making Neli a huge relief. Your temper got shorter. You bounced between eating junk and being superstitiously picky and doing both simultaneously. And somewhere along the way you figured buying a Roomba was a good and practical idea for a room that was maybe 100 square feet in size.\n\nAnd -- you knew it was going to be bad, going into it. Why did you want to fall down so badly? Perhaps it seemed freeing to devote yourself to one thing you knew you cared about, even though you knew quite well that you were spending half of the day being unproductive. You could just not worry about anything else in your life, because you had work to do, even if you weren't doing it.\n\nIn fact, isn't that what you've been doing all along? Finding an excuse to crunch on this stuff, without having a cause for it? Why not try having a life first?\n\n[[Click. Click. Click.]]
Sometimes you really want to avoid Neli because she'll want to ... actually you don't remember why. Sometimes it's a chore to do, sometimes she makes you sit down and eat her food(which is extremely hit and miss), sometimes just because you can hear her arguing with the boyfriend, or worse, dealing with the ex(whom you have seen a total of one time, and looked fairly monstrous). Either way, you keep finding yourself hiding in your room. Something about this house perturbs you.\n \n[[Leave.|Through the Window]]
You have a view of Capitola Road, a small thoroughfare, from your room. It could be any number of places in California, but really, it feels like it's about halfway to nowhere.\n\nOutside, [[Rico]] barks. He always barks.\n\nThe room is small and you haven't been doing a great job of keeping it in shape. You find it far too easy to tell yourself to work on the game instead. And then once you do that, you are sick of being indoors, so you go for your [[daily walk.]]
You sit down in the restaurant with Dave. //Who Let The Dogs Out// plays in the background. Almost immediately, he begins complaining about the waitstaff behind their backs. This is a recurring phenomenon. \n\nPerhaps the only reason you hang out with him is a familiar, geek-gamer attitude. He is impeccably up to date with pop culture, though he's not nearly as deep into games as you. And so there is a little bit to share...\n \n"I could do a better job, I was never like that, I was a good waiter." he grumbles sourly. "Man, I wish I could find a girlfriend." \n\n[[You don't really have this need.]] \n
You are feeding the chickens again. It isn't a difficult task, but you find that you like watering the plants more. Toss in some grain. Hose the water. Collect the eggs. None of those things are very hard...\n\nNeli and her boyfriend never fail to comment on the eggs. "Enjoying the eggs, James?" They are a little better than what you get in the store, but you know that it's mostly about cost to them. They're generous enough to let you consume as many as you want, although you're short on ideas for using them all.\n\nNo, what annoys you the most about the chickens is not really the chickens. It's Rico. This is his big chance to block your path and extract a maximum of pets, brushes and hugs. All of which just makes you feel guilty that you aren't out there more often. But it's downright unpleasant to be in [[this backyard.]]\n\n[[Leave.|Go on a trip]]
Dave uses a CPAP machine for his sleep apnea, but he never feels very rested from it. He is also kicked out of the house by his mom on a weekly basis, because his mom wants private time on her day off from work. For this reason he is often both bored and tired, which leads to his hanging out in Borders and looking for company.\n\nOn this occasion, you agree to visit the San Jose Tech Museum, it being an easy trip from the Santa Cruz bus system. Although it is a mostly uninteresting visit, you get the opportunity to go into some more details of his life...\n\n[[*|SJ Tech]]
You've indulged in some fantastic idea of how the game might sell itself. It's been a little under a year in the making, and you want to do more than just a classic Flash sponsorship deal. \n\nThe market had become hyped up about microtransactions recently and so you got the idea of selling part of the game that way. You had essentially no feedback to go on, and the scheme you came up had plenty of warning signs by simply being so unconventional, but you were optimistic.\n\nAnyone making something probably has to delude themselves at least a little. Otherwise how would they get anything done?\n\n[[And so you come to the finish.|Cafe Pergolesi]]
As usual, you have arrived during the nightly restocking. Boxes are strewn throughout the aisles. After much deliberation, you purchase some diet soda, and take a seat in the dining area, which still has couch seating although everything else has been stacked for the evening.\n\nYou look at the magazines idly for a while, and sip at the beverage. But with nothing left to do, you head back out again.\n\n<<back "daily walk." 1>>
Jumbo shivered a little. It was another foggy blue day, an unusual summer for Santa Cruz. You sip at your double Americano.\n \n"The bashers were at it again today. Un-believable!"\n \nJumbo was a small white-furred Chihuahua, blind at birth.\n \n"We just have to be patient. Monk is on our side - the squeeze has just got to happen soon."\n \nYou have never met Monk. He is a [[con artist]]. He had gotten this friend - an old co-worker - hooked first, and in his attempt to rationalize what he was doing, he dragged you into the mix. You saw it first as an opportunity to idly discuss stock trading, but within the span of a few conversations, you found yourself too curious to remain idle. \n\nAt first it was a brief attempt at day trading, and while you lost a little there, the bigger problem came long afterwards, at tax time. Every trade had to be accounted for. You finally got it right years later.\n\nThat trading got your nerves up, though, and it caused [[something else]] to happen.
And so now you sit with Jumbo, and Jumbo's owner. Wasting a lot of time and energy thinking about penny stocks, something which you were never supposed to get into and somehow did anyway.\n \nThe money you have in your account is enough to trade a little with, but not enough to live off of. You have no idea how to value it, but at least you've had the sense to restrict how much you're using.\n \nYou watch message boards and charts habitually now, soaking in the sockpuppeted, heavily manipulated ways of the pink sheets, and then try to make something useful of yourself in the meantime. But it really is nearly the end of this Santa Cruz story, now, and you kind of know it.\n \n[[Lose your love.]]
Somehow, you stay calm and reply, \n\n''"I'm not from around here."'' \n\n[[And then walk off...]]\n
...when you get home, you feel the urge to cut your hair short. You do a hack job of it, but at least you won't have as many rednecks yelling at you from their trucks.\n\n[[*|Jumbo]]
And nothing happens. \n\n\n\n\n\nOne of many times that you see this result, as you will learn in the next few years. It will earn a total of $19.20 over a few years.\n\nBut you are still happy about certain things with the little world you built, despite its severe flaws. The characters are portrayed as being in a bleak world, and yet are platonically positive throughout. They search simply to find each other, rather than to defeat something. There is a suggestion of darker past, but the end is a happy reunion. And mechanically speaking, there were interesting features that you allowed to work badly for too long - which maybe was the biggest problem. You had gotten deep into technical things that shouldn't matter.\n\nThe game fades away from your life, but with no task to excuse yourself with, [[a terrible void]] has emerged.\n\n
You are in one of the conference rooms of the Fairmont San Jose. It is 6 AM. You have stayed up all night. You managed to beg out a little bit of playtest time on your game, and then spent the rest of the night playing through //Shin Nekketsu Kōha: Kunio-tachi no Banka// and //Battletoads//. Actually, you let someone with far more impressive skills than you take over on //Battletoads//, and he goes on to finish the game before your bleary eyes.\n \nThe con does not interest you. Not like it used to, anyway. The people you knew aren't here this year and you have not been keeping much of a presence online otherwise, leaving you spinning in circles a bit, looking for a group that clicked with you and never really finding one. The con is themed "Gold Rush," implying something lively, or at least violent, but it feels dead - a pale orange light over everything, smothering garish fursuits, badges, art. It is a realm full of escapism and you cannot stand it right now. Apparently, you are happier with self-imprisonment.\n \nYou dwell a bit more on the game. [[It will not be good, but you can't believe that yet.]]\n \nIt is January 2010.
It did not take long to realize you had made a grave mistake. She started flirting. You knew she would, because she had after that one Airsoft game. But you had some other pretense of friendship, and abandoned it completely within a few hours of starting to talk. Maybe you had succeeded in fooling yourself once again.\n\nYou participated in the Airsoft games because they were one of the last remaining connections to people you knew while going to college. They had all left Santa Cruz, mostly for the South Bay. And the distance and the work and little things meant that you weren't nearly as close as you used to be. You mostly found the game tedious, though you didn't exactly regret attending.\n \nBut with this girl, the relationship quickly developed in a bad way. Her own issues, abuses from years ago that led to poor self-esteem, started dragging you in. You became part of an exhausting ritual in which she demanded your judgments of her for hours each day, and she only truly accepted a judgment of perfection - at least for a while. It was fundamentally dishonest, of course, so she would just come back for more, over and over.\n\nYour gave your best effort to push it into something that might actually build up her self-respect, and it just wouldn't stick.\n\nWithin two weeks it came to an ugly finish - the limerence had faded and then you made some casual remark that triggered all her doubts.\n\nSorry.\n \n[[At least it was all over the phone.|now]]\n
In a way, it's exactly like what you experienced as a child in the schoolyard - a stupid trick that plays on your good nature.\n\nIn another way, it's far more elaborate, with so many methods employed to make Monk look like a legitimately successful guy, to get people in the door and believing in his ideas, and gradually using that to make people more invested in a financial sense - and then to quietly remove himself from the situation as things go south. It could be penny stocks or it could be pork bellies - the tactics are similar everywhere.\n\nThese tactics include:\n\n - Making people emotionally invested in his opinion via a paid class or tutorial.\n - Getting his name and face into legitimate-looking sources - his own company P.R., talk shows, etc.\n - Encouraging his marks to meet people who have succeeded previously. You actually go all the way to Sacramento to do this. You will later realize they are paid actors.\n\nYou will never know quite how deep this rabbit hole goes. Monk may not actually be the brains of the operation. And if this is the work of one man - what could an entire corporation do? A government?\n\nIn its aftermath you resolve to hold stronger beliefs for yourself, so that you will not have others impose them upon you again.\n\n[[Believe in people and in foxes.|Jumbo]]
You observe Jumbo, over your miniature coffee. Neither you nor your friend really wants to pay for coffee right now.\n\nThe breeze blows strongly - it was the coldest summer you have seen in Santa Cruz. You will move back home to San Francisco within a few weeks. It was bad, but you will survive.\n \nJumbo, wandering across the cafe's patio, is about to fall off the curb and into the bushes again. \n\n[[Pick him up.]]\n
A scruffy street kid emerges into the late evening as you pass by a taqueria. You're mostly thinking of getting a slice of pizza.\n\n"Bro....hey bro!" he calls, and it's so abrupt, you figure he isn't calling to you. \n\nThen he gets angry. \n\n"''WHAT THE FUCK.'' Don't ignore me bro!"\n\nAs it turns out he is a pot dealer, and he is furious at you for the slight of...being uncertain. Regardless he immediately tries to sell you some of his homegrown. You aren't really a smoker, though your $20 leather jacket found at CVS makes you look like one.\n \n[[Snap at the insulting nature of this sales pitch.|Ask him if he's from around here.]]\n[[Ask him if he's from around here.]]
On cold nights it's much better to direct your walk through 7-11 or a gas station and pick up something hot - in the dead hours between midnight and 6 AM, there is little else, save the two diners in town. The coffee is no good, but you will have it anyway. Or tea. It doesn't matter. It's a way to come up for air.\n\nAt least you can tell yourself, you went somewhere. Even if it wasn't much of anywhere.\n\n[[The game.]]
Triplefox\n\nhttp://www.ludamix.com\n[[Source (.tws)|http://www.ludamix.com/games/rico/rico.tws]]
It's early in the morning. The light beams orange, the air puffs at you coolly. You decide you are going to do something a bit different. For once, you take Rico on a run, like he always wanted. You can't break down the walls or tear up the roads, but you can at least do that. You can make him free for a while. And then you get yourself prepared to hike over the mountains.\n\n\n\nMany hours later, as day has progressed towards evening, you complete the hike, seeing the warm glow of Silicon Valley around you. Maybe you haven't discovered yourself yet, and you have an awful lot to work through, but the worst is over with...\n\n[[And you'll be somewhere different, and maybe you can meet good people, and...|End]]
Your hair is very long and you haven't shaved in a while, but you went to see a movie anyway. \n\nAfterwards, you shuffle up the hill towards home and encounter a blocky bald man sporting reflective sunglasses, who has just parked his car to the curb. He remarks at you in front of his lady friend, \n\n''"You must get pretty fucked in the head growing up here, huh?"''\n\n[[Remove the sunglasses from his head and snap them in two.|Resist the urge to remove the sunglasses from his head and snap them in two.]]\n[[Get away from him.|Resist the urge to remove the sunglasses from his head and snap them in two.]]\n[[Talk to him.|Resist the urge to remove the sunglasses from his head and snap them in two.]]\n