NaNoWriMo 2015: Terms and Conditions

Hello, everyone! It’s been a while! I’ve been meaning to write a proper, meaty post for some time now, but I’ve been too busy doing stupid school-related things such as studying. (Proof: I’ve been posting a lot more over at Said In Your Own Words, where I’ve quickly learned that I’m annoyed with WordPress for not having superscript and subscript hotkeys. Like, what’s up with that? If Google Drive can do it…)

Still, I’ve been studying all morning, and as a small reward for keeping myself “fed” and “hydrated,” I’m writing the obligatory NaNoWriMo post.

Yes, you read correctly. In spite of the fact that I haven’t had enough time to drop a line on my blog every week or so, somehow the squad has decided that we have enough time to write a novel. I originally was planning on giving up after giving it a day or two of the good ol’ college try, but then they brought competition into it, and, well… that makes it more fun.

(I’m gonna wIN DANGIT)

Junhi and Sapphire have both opted to forego the NaNoing this year, Sapphire because she’s a responsible adult with actual things to do, and Junhi because he’d rather be distracting and just sit there in the same room and watch Twitch videos of people playing Overwatch—

[ahem] Anyway, it’s four days in, and Finn, Fritz and I have managed to stick to it. How, you ask? Well, you see, we’ve got a rather elaborate setup going.

Every night, the three of us get together after a long day of studying and do what we call “word sprints.” I’m not sure if these count as proper word sprints, since I’m not sure what NaNo means when they say “word sprints,” but essentially, we set a timer for fifteen minutes, turn on our music (Fritz has taken a liking to a certain song of dubious appropriateness), and write like our lives depend on it. At the end of the sprint, everyone who clears the minimum word requirement (I think it’s 250?) gets a point, and then we’re assigned additional points based on our placing. (I think first gets two additional, and second gets one additional?) At the end of the month, whoever has the most gets taken out to dinner by the people that they beat.

(We’re sticking to it, too. There’s a chart on the wall of 500 with our standings on it, because heck yeah.)

That’s not the most important prize, however. No, we’re competing for a much more prestigious title. You see, whoever wins NaNo first earns themselves the valued title of Kamisama.

(Second place gets Kamichama, and third place gets something derogatory… I’m not sure if we’ve settled on it yet.)

Yep, this is serious bizz. I’m making a sash and everything.

It’s entirely likely that the novelty of this stupid rivalry will have worn off in a week, but until then, here’s to noveling! (Also, here’s to my determination to get those skrubs to buy me dinner and call me Kamisama until next November!)

Yeah, I know I have other things I should be doing.

Shhhhh. It’s NaNo. I do what I want.


(Okay, so the story behind the “kamisama” thing is that, from my understanding, Fritz once demonstrated to Finn that he was capable of “seductively peeling an orange.” He then insisted that this capacity made him deserving of the title “Kamisama.” It has since become a meme, as well as a highly prestigious title. Or whatever.)

(Like, how do you even seductively peel an orange?)

(You know what, I don’t want to know.)

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The Mystical, Magical, Not-One Piece Adventure

Yesterday evening, the gang played what should end up being the penultimate installment of our longstanding Pathfinder campaign.

This particular campaign has been going on for over a year, finding its start somewhere toward the beginning of last summer when Finn decided he wanted to GM a game that I’ve now started calling “The Mystical, Magical, Not-One Piece Adventure.” Although it could probably be more aptly named “This Isn’t Windwaker with Frogs, I Swear,” I feel the first name still fits it pretty well.

Our wonderful, year-long adventure has taken many twists and turns that would probably confuse those who weren’t there at the time. In fact, as someone who was at nearly every session, I still have a hard time remembering exactly what happened and, more importantly, why.

Because this information is highly entertaining and nonsensical, I present to you the amusing antics of our Pathfinder campaign. Because these antics are quite difficult to put into a narrative style (and because I don’t quite remember what happened), I present them to you as bullet points.

Over the course of our campaign:

  • We were kidnapped and slated to be sold as slaves
  • We escaped the slave ship, partially with the help of Eric’s character’s pet extra-planar water-dog
  • We had many problems medicating Eric’s character, Elizabeth, who was a schizophrenic whose alignment changed from good to evil spontaneously
  • Scout’s character, Oliver, asked trees for directions
  • We ended up stranded in an archipelago of islands inhabited by frog people
    • A giant, magical wall of water that inexplicably appeared one day trapped us there
  • Frog people were really racist
  • We started working for the Frog Queen after becoming fugitives of the state (?) (I wasn’t there for that part)
  • We visited islands named Felt and Flannel
  • Atsuko’s character accidentally got high and/or drunk multiple times
    • One time, this occurred after taking questionable drugs for schizophrenia obtained from a frog-person “alchemist” named Dunspurce McGill
    • Dunspurce ended up being the worst and also a recurring character
  • Atsuko also obtained a baby dragon
  • Our characters were physically injured by music at a rap concert
    • The concert of Gangstalicious and Thugnificent, to be exact, who just happened to be Eric’s character’s (Elizabeth’s) idols
  • We somehow procured a magical sword that glowed when in the possession of the rightful king
  • It was stolen by the 3rd Street Saints, who were working with Gangstalicious and Thugnificent
    • We stole it back, though
  • Still, Gangstalicious and Thugnificent imprisoned the Frog Queen and took over the country
  • Dunspurce picked up the sword and turns out he wAS FREAKING THE PROMISED KING
  • The frog-monks at the Temple of the Song (I think?) somehow turned Dunspurce McGill into a useful member of society
  • Our characters launched a campaign to retake the country for the “Twice-promised King”
    • This involved convincing an independent state of toad-people to aid us
  • We got into a fight with a magicproofed Lamborghini
  • Elizabeth summoned a T-Rex to fight the Lamborghini
    • That’s right, T-Rex v. Lamborghini
    • We affectionately named the T-Rex the “Fritzosaurus Rex” because it made cat sounds
  • Our werewolf-elemental Kitsune turned himself to stone and bull-rushed a magicproofed Lamborghini
    • And the Lamborghini won
    • We still rekt it though

So yeah! That’s just a brief, disjointed recap! Although I don’t have much evidence of what transpired, I do have this picture of our latest fight, taken toward the end of last session:

image
I’ll just leave you with that.

Now I’m going to draw a map of a couple of fictional continents with the hopes that I read enough articles online to know what I’m doing.

Yeah, I know that Wikipedia articles on plate tectonics don’t count as useful information. Whatever! I do what I want!

Donuts Ga Nai

Yesterday, Fritz, Finn, Sapphire and I attempted to go get really cheap donuts across town. However, by the time we’d arrived, they had freaking sold out. We were sorely disappointed (well, except for Finn, who is apparently on a diet because he’s a skrub). The sale is supposedly happening again tonight, so here’s hoping…

 

Antics: “I’m a vampire now, you guys.”

Two days ago, Finn sent out an email in an attempt to commission us to give blood for his scholarship drive. He cited his apparent vampirism as the reason that we should come out and allow ourselves to be stabbed in the arm with a thick needle. (“I’ve got a hankerin that only your blood will satisfy.”)

A few hours later, I was sitting across from his youth pastor, having a casual conversation about the fact that Finn’s roommate has all but been confirmed to be a panda serial killer. (What does that mean? Would it be a panda that killed people, a person that killed pandas, or a panda that killed pandas? I guess Finn’ll find out.)

It was after drinking a small can of apple juice and eating a fudge bar that Finn insisted I needed (wink-wink–well, it was free), already having overcome the slight dizziness that came with having a pint of blood removed, that antics began.

It started with being told a story that I could have gone my whole life without hearing, and steadily progressed until Eric was showing us pictures of pandas and other cute animals making rude gestures. Finn also managed to make the same rude gesture in a picture that Kitty ended up sending to a friend of hers. The whole time, I found myself shouting, half laughing, half crying, “We’re in a church, you guys! Respect pls pls pls…”

Our friend, Kitty, who is the original vegan of our group, showed up and attempted to give blood, but got turned down, not because of an iron deficiency, but because she recently took a cruise to Mexico. Finn gave her an “I Make a Difference” sticker; he had written with a Sharpie over the blank spot for a name, “Mexico wouldn’t let me.”

We decided that we needed to call Sherly in an attempt to get her up at the church. Although she (understandably, and wisely) was told she couldn’t come, we talked with her over the speaker of my cell phone for an unnecessarily long time.

During the call, Finn and I discovered how completely enthralling the concept of apple juice in a can was. Mesmerized, we took a picture of ourselves with the can and sent it to her. (We put the phone in the picture too, because phone-ception!)

Somewhere along the way, after Kitty left and Sherly patiently told us she had to get off of the phone, Finn counted up the number of people who had successfully given blood and decided we needed to take action. (Note: For Finn to be eligible for the scholarship, he had to have 25 people donate–at this point he had had 19.) With permission from the pastor (sort of), we raided the church’s costume closet.

Finn put me in the donkey costume. Our friend Marty, who gave red blood cells instead of whole blood (which involved being hooked up to a cool machine and sitting for an hour), was a Roman warrior. Eric, as recompense for distasteful (and somewhat hilarious) jokes made earlier and an unwillingness to dress up, was forced to be a mustard bottle. A sort of dented mustard bottle. Waving American flags.

We gathered signs, put the finishing touches on our costumes, and insisted that we would not exploit Jesus to get people to give blood (although Finn thought someone wearing a Jesus costume would be effective). Finn marched us down the hall and unveiled us to the world.

Fantastic.

Thrilled

We were shown to our posts (me to a solitary spot on one side of the road, facing the quickly-moving traffic, and Marty and Eric to the other side, facing the slow-moving traffic–did I mention it was five o’clock?), told to bring ’em in, and then left to fend for ourselves.

The heat was a bit… uncomfortable. Especially in a thick donkey suit. One man driving by rolled down his window and asked, “Have you no shame?”

We quickly, and honestly, replied, “No, not really.”

Finn showed up again with two young girls, Pinky Hooper (Finn and Eric’s younger sister) and her friend. One was in a ketchup bottle costume that complemented Eric’s, and the other was a fairy.

The two girls were stationed facing the slow traffic, meaning that Marty (and eventually Eric) came to join me. A girl who was coming for the fellowship dinner pulled her car up into the grass and blasted music for us to dance to.

Eric jokingly shouted contradictions just to be… well, contrary. Marty danced the only way he knew how–seductively. I awkwardly shuffled about and waved.

It wasn’t until Gangnam Style came on, when Finn had returned with a, “Gee, I sure feel like saving lives today,” sign of his own creation, that I started to feel dizzy.

The younger girls and I went inside, and I was promptly ushered into a chair and given water by a woman working the blood drive. The rest of the advertising committee soon followed.

Activity lulled as the last stragglers trickled in. The girl who had let us borrow her car told us about her college/carrer plans, and we fist-bumped in agreement when we discovered that we both write our passwords in foreign languages. Finn gave blood, since he had been put off until the end of the day. Churchgoers got free ice cream, I tried to call my parents, who were at our church and, thus, not answering, and mini bundt cakes were distributed.

Around evening, after I had confirmed that my family was sending someone to come get me, I wandered outside and watched as Finn borrowed carts that were sitting in front of the Red Cross truck and surfed them across the parking lot. A few almost-collisions with a dumpster aside, nobody was harmed.

Not a bad day, all in all.

Antics summary number 1, otherwise to be interpreted as the moral of the story: If you see teenagers dancing on the side of the road in costume in order to advertise a blood drive, stop, because there will undoubtedly be amusing misadventures to take part in (or at least observe).

After all, as impulsive, slightly insane teenagers,

We (apparently) do what we want.