Thursday, October 02, 2008

Shit that Keeps Me in Dayton

Every once in a while, I'll get tired and frustrated with the idea of living in Dayton, and start searching through job ads.

I do this because it reminds me of the hard truth:

If you add in health benefits, I make as much (and, in some places, more - again, if you count the health insurance, which easily covers 5k a year in expenses for me for $10 a month) in this little town doing what I do than I'd make in a big city doing the same thing.

It appears that the swing over will happen once I have 2-5 years of experience instead of 1-2. There's a pretty significant wage jump between the 1-2 years experience copywriting jobs and the 2-5 years of experience copywriting jobs. Once I have the two years of experience, maybe other options will look more appealing?

But so long as this place pays me what they do and offers the health insurance program that they do, I just can't justify *not* living in this blasted heath of a red town.

Man, I love my job. I just wish it was in, like, Columbus or something. You see? At this point, I could totally be OK with the idea of living in Columbus!

And More It's a Small World Afterall

So, the other night, my date brought over a movie called The Gamers. It's a little D&D cult classic, basically a bunch of college guys with a couple of cameras, who document their D&D game in the basement of their school (which you can watch - in all its cheesy, low budget glory - on YouTube)

So I'm sitting there watching the opening where the guys are heading down the hall to start the game, and I'm thinking, man, that dude just to the right of camera looks really familiar.

And then they all sit down around the gaming table again, and yeah, seriously, that DM looks really familiar. I started paying attention to the opening credits, and, lo and behold, there it was:

"Matt Cameron" was playing the DM.

I actually had to pause the movie and burst into uncontrollable laughter.

Matt Cameron and I went to elementary school together. We were best friends for a couple of years from third-firth grade. He introduced me to all of the SF books in the library. When I was 16, I saw him again when he came to a production of Macbeth at my highschool where I played Banquo. The last time I saw him, I was dropping him off at his house after taking him out to dinner with the theater crew.

Appparently, Matt got into theater hijinks of his own in college... I totally should have known. He always did have a love for text-based computer games. It was only a matter of time before he found D&D.

According to Wikipedia, he's now a lawyer in Boston, which is much closer to what I figured he'd be doing with his life. Matt was one of those prodigies who skips grades and attends Gifted classes. I loved hanging out with him, and I was sad when we started to grow apart in the fifth grade. He was a really neat friend. And, honestly, I missed all of the book recommendations.

So then today, I'm randomly clicking Stumbleupon links and I get this page on the Scientific American website, and just before I go to click through again I'm thinking, "Man, that guy looks really familiar."


"No, really, that guy looks really familiar." I checked the name, and there it was: Chen-Bo. Chen-Bo was one of Jenn's classmates at Northwestern. He came over a couple of times, as I recall, and was in attendance at several social gatherings Jenn let me tag along on. He was pretty awesome.

It's kind of weird to realize that all of the adults out in the world now are, you know, your contemporaries? Because that means that, uh, you must be an adult now, too, with your book deal and corp writing job?


"Maybe in Ohio, But Not in America!"

Man, I'm not looking forward to voting in Ohio.

Bookery: It's a Small World

Was browsing the bookstore with my date last night and saw a copy of David Schwartz's Superpowers. I had been picking up and talking about books and authors for sometime as we browsed the shelves, but when I picked this one up, the date said, "I think I've heard of this."

He works at a comic book store, so this didn't surprise me.

I babbled about Dave Schwartz for a bit and my date said, "You know what, I think I heard him on NPR. He seemed like a really nice guy."

Man, bookery gets around. "Actually, yeah, you probably did," I said. "He had a spot on there, I remember. He's a total sweetheart of a guy. It's about kids in Madison with superpowers. I think you'll get a kick out of it."

My date bought the book. Note that it generally takes 3-4 brain taps about a book before you buy it, which was why it was interesting to watch the power of media and personal recommendations play out right there. He'd heard of the book on NPR and also listed somewhere online, and then I pimped it. Third time's the charm.

This made me terribly happy, because there are far too many people I know who write books that aren't up my alley, and then I never read them. And then I feel like a Bad Writer.

But hey, I've learned that just because it may not be my kind of book doesn't mean I can't pimp it. And, knowing my date, I think he'll really dig this book, the little comic-book nerd, Terry Pratchett-reading, Dresdan loving little goof that he is.

Sweet beans.