Monthly Archives: January, 2020

The Game of Life (Part Two)

Years ago I wrote a post on the board game Life and how it’s both stupidly unrealistic and uncomfortably realistic at the same time.  There’s another version of this game for even lazier people that doesn’t involve the annoying game board and teeny little people pegs that get lost in the carpet.  It’s the Life Adventures card game and the Things and I love it.

life adventures card game

I’m just sad there is no psychotic family on the cover of this game. We had to supply that ourselves.

If you thought the first game was random, this game just spits on that and says “Watch this.”  You get four decks of cards, a “Family” deck, a “Wealth” deck, a “Career” deck, and an “Adventure” deck.  Just like real life, that’s all there is – a job, money, family, and oh the adventure of making it to the next paycheck!  Actually, just like the old game, the Adventure deck has you swimming with dolphins and crap.  Big deal. I want important careers and expensive things!  And children because they come with points!

life adventures card game 2

Who needs adventure when you can own cool stuff like children?

Oh, right, I should explain the system a bit better.  There’s no deciding whether to get a degree or not, or stopping to buy a house or get married.  There’s really no deciding period, it’s just whatever the deck throws at you.  So if you happen to draw one of the wedding cards, boom, you just got married. As it was in the old game, it doesn’t matter if you wanted a wedding or not, you got one.  Suck it up.  You can avoid the wedding if you simply avoid the Family deck altogether though, but you’re really missing great opportunities for advancement and hilarity.  

There is no money in this game, but don’t worry, it’s still pure capitalism.  Each card you receive has a number of points on it, depending on its value.  So like getting one child gives you 20 points, but triplets nets you 60 points!  You can get an igloo (and be happy about it!) for 40 points, but we all want the castle because it’s worth 90 points, and also because it’s a castle and so much better than that igloo that’s melting cause it’s in Texas.  

polar bear igloo

There’s also that issue of freakishly large polar bears.

In the old game you were stuck with one job unless you had a midlife crisis.  You still get those here, but you don’t have to in order to have as many jobs as you like.  You can be a rocket scientist, a rock star, and an exotic zoo veterinarian all at the same time.  You’d better have multiple careers, though, cause while you can have as many jobs as you want, you only get three paydays per job, and each of those is 20 points.  You can get 20 points just for popping out a baby!  Thank goodness this is just a game, and no one works multiple jobs or has babies for money. Talk about silly!

But you’re probably wondering, don’t you need a degree for some of those jobs, Alice?  Right you are!  Some cards are not playable until you have another card first.  So if you want to be a rocket scientist, you have to draw a degree card first.  Just one, though, so whew about those pesky doctorates.  Just one degree qualifies you for every job with a degree, but some jobs don’t require one at all like rock star and President.  I’m just joking, there’s no President card.  There is a politician one, though, and it comes with mega points, but you like need a degree?  Far out.

trump

President Trump is a winner at LIFE

You also need a boat (a bathtub will do) to sail solo around the world, or a plane (private jet please) to do the loop de loop, but you can go to the moon without a spaceship no probs.  Also no home improvements without a house, though you can go through the whole game with no home if you want.  Just wait, though, cause I haven’t gotten to Life’s version of Chance cards yet, and that’s where things get interesting.  

You get to sue people, naturally, for any card with 30 points from their life story.  This could be bad if, say, all they have is a house worth at least 30 points.  Or a family shark.  Or a kid. If you don’t like your job, you can just swap it with someone else’s.  I know I certainly wanted to swap my job with Kim Kardashian’s.  You donate to charity in this game, which is great, only you are making someone else donate to charity by force.  Sort of like what happened to Bill Gates when he tried to keep all his goodies to himself and social media got madfaced.  You can just directly take someone’s house, though you do have to give them one in return – the igloo for the castle trade, for instance.  And did I mention children?

kim kardashian

I could hack a job sitting around being rich and shallow.

Yeah, like everything else, those little brats are commodities.  There is more than one card where you can “adopt” a child or “find a long-lost relative” and just take someone’s child away.  I used to think that was called “kidnapping” but apparently I was mistaken!  You can also just have a midlife crisis and swap all the cards in your hand with another player.  Doesn’t matter what cards are in their hand. I bet they were saving that lawsuit and castle and set of twins weren’t they? Too bad.  It’s so funny when a family member screams “Don’t take my babies!”

Since this game gets a little cutthroat (it encourages us, what do you want?), the Things and I decided to make it even more fun by playing as fictional characters.  Last time we went Star Wars and I played as Jar Jar Binks complete with “Meesa this” etc. that never, ever got old.  Try imagining Jar Jar getting married, or worse, reproducing.  I figured that was a bit over his head, so I just had him thinking hand shaking made the babies, while his Sith wife had kids with various Dark Side guys.  This led into questions of “just how hard did she shake his hand” etc., as Han Solo (Thing Two) and C-3P0 (Thing One) plotted to murder me.  You’ll be happy to know that we are a progressive family, so C-3PO got to marry R2-D2 at last and together they, er, built BB-8.  At least it wasn’t as ridiculous as the time I played the Emperor and married and had kids – I mean who would marry that guy, am I right?

r2 and c3po in love

Marriage equality at last

But in the end, Life’s just a game, isn’t it?  You have your ups and downs, days when you are furious at your messy igloo, and days when people adopt your children from you.  Que sera, sera!  

~ Alice

The Blizzard

I know why I got so upset now.  I started feeling it last night and then this morning big time.  I had to do deep breathing.  I feel rage again.  I hadn’t felt anger in a long time.  I was reporting 0 on the happy sheet at the treatments.  But it’s bad.
angryface monster
I know they say to do a little at a time, but that doesn’t work with my house, not with illness and three other people working against me.  It’s like trying to shovel snow with the shovel from a child’s beach pail in the middle of blizzard.  I get a little done, but then I get sick from the asthma and allergies, then I get sick from the antibiotics that go on forever (still have like 5 more), and meanwhile what I got done is quickly covered up by more snow.  And my family is that damn blizzard.  Last night I wanted to escape so badly. I wanted to go anywhere, even the hospital as long as it was clean and I was alone.  I don’t know how much longer I can stand it.  They don’t care. They go away most of the day or ignore it, but I’m here day after day breathing in the dust and the dirt and the mold and feeling suffocated by the clutter that never ends. I keep picking it up and going through it, but I don’t reach an end.

laundry pile

Part of me wants to throw it all away.  All of it.  There is just no way I can do this alone.  If the entire house started spotless, maybe I could hope to try maintaining it, maybe.  But not like this.  I can’t even hire someone to clean it, saying I got the money together, until the clutter is gone, and that never stops falling.  I feel so defeated, and it all closes in on me.

I have to let it go right now.  I don’t know what else to do.

Help.
~ Alice

No Buys, Goals, Resolutions, and Crap Like That

Hindsight’s 2019, and on to 2020. Boy am I glad to have 2019 in hindsight, cause it really belongs there with the exception of my new depression treatment.  A lot of stupid stuff went on in 2019, and there was a lot out of my control, but also a few things I could have controlled a little better.  Like I could have used better coping skills with this mad, mad world, which I’m about to address.

new year 2020

Begone 2019!

Last year I started watching some No-Buy videos on Youtube and reading some articles on Google.  A No-Buy month, year, etc. is just what it sounds like – you don’t buy stuff for a certain amount of time.  I am very aware that there are people who go on these no buy larks out of pure necessity, and I have been there myself.  But most people have at least some disposable income (or take it from another category like coffee for clothing) even if they don’t have money for much else, and that’s what I’m talking about here. 

At the current time, only my husband works outside of the home. I was worried for quite a while how we would make it, but ironically with our lovely system, so much was taken out of my check before by the government which then said we had to pay more taxes because we made more money (including the money they were taking out, not what we were taking home) so – it hasn’t made as much of a difference as I thought it would.  In some ways, such as Thing One’s college tuition, it actually saved us money because now they consider us as poor as we were back when I worked, and the grants combined with scholarships for her grades paid for both her first and what looks like her second semester’s tuition.  And we did that without Bernie paying for college, though he is certainly still welcome to do it.

democratic line up round 2

At least I can pick out Bernie in this group.

Many of the people whose No Buy reports interested me had way too much makeup.  There’s even an entire Reddit about this.  I don’t have a problem with makeup. I don’t wear it that often now that I’m not working (and I stopped a while before then even).  The only time I’ve bought much makeup was when they had a special Disney line of it.  Which leads to the problem – Disney.  I collect Disney dolls, especially limited edition ones which are, of course, more expensive.  My mother collected dolls when I was younger, but I got onto the Disney kick while I was working in order to reward myself.  My Things also have their share of dolls, as you know if you’ve read my blog very long and seen us create strange posts with them.  

I am not ashamed of my dolls; I enjoy them.  Everyone has something they collect, whether it’s car parts (my husband), or makeup, or baseball cards, or cell phones (you don’t need a brand new 1,000 dollar Apple phone each year sorry), etc. etc.  I often collect when the thing represents something that matters to me, because I like to see, hear, and touch.  I’m horrible at museums.  Anyway,  Disney movies matter since they all have messages (besides make me more money). I also got into collecting Game of Thrones last year since I really enjoyed the story of Daenerys – at least until that last season but moving on.  I got into buying those figures too, and then into the world of Funko Pops.  

baby yoda pop

Quit it with those freakish cute eyes!

Be afraid.  There’s one of them for everyone, I don’t care who you are.

Since recently paying off our car, our only debt is our mortgage and medical bills.  So I’m not using credit cards (we don’t own one) to finance my problem. I have dipped into our savings, though, which is not very big and consists mostly of what we got from our last tax return.  We’ve been fortunate in that people like our church and family have aided with some of the bigger bills such as the dental one (I hate teeth).  I’ve found that buying dolls and collectibles often comes up when I’m stressed, or sad, and gives me that brief rush – only to make me feel bad later.  You see I have plenty of dolls at this point.  I even sold some last year, and I intend on selling more collectibles this year.  

But I’m hoping to first stop buying so many of the fancy Disney dolls.  One thing that has helped me is to learn more about the psychology of shopping.  It’s pretty creepy what advertisers do to lure you in, and we think we’re too smart for it, but fall for it every time.  I’ve followed a youtuber who has some interesting videos, and read some books as well.  I would like to spend this year enjoying what I have, decluttering my house of what I don’t, and just finding healthier habits than online shopping (which is how I buy most things I don’t need.).  With what I save, I hope to put money in savings, pay off bills, and buy other things that would be nice like frames for art (the Things are good artists).  My walls are rather bare and depressing at the moment.

minimalist white

For those wanting the “hospital look”, white walls are in.

So I’ve made some plans for the next year.  

Yearly Goals

goal people

Did someone just shoot at that one guy? 

Health: Be healthier overall: keep up with mental health care and other doctor appointments (like asthma etc), more exercise, actual meal plans, better self care, and losing some weight.

Financial: Less spending on dolls and collectibles, fountain drinks, and meals out.  More saving, paying off bills, improving my environment, and my self confidence (more flattering clothes, learning new stuff).

Environment: Clear out clutter, clean (and learn more about how to clean properly)

Listing them as somewhat vague yearly resolutions freaked me out, so I will divide them into months.

Month One: January

january goal

Real clipart title: Unrecognizable woman adds healthy goal.

Health: 1. Continue my mental health treatment (post on that coming up)  2.Walk more – I need a specific number of steps each day.  I’m still recovering from first a sinus infection, and then the antibiotics that made me sicker.  But I did spend some Christmas money on a new tracker (gadgets!) which is coming on Friday.  Exercise is supposed to be good for body and mind, or so they say.  I’ll find out. 4. Write more.  Writing is fun, and I like communicating with you guys.

Financial: 1.No spending on dolls and collectibles.  2. Fewer fountain drinks: I’ve mostly drinking the little 8 oz cans of cola rather than getting the drinks from the drive-through.  This goes with health too, come to think of it. 3. Get a bill paying system together.

Environment: Work on my bedroom the most, especially my desk and bedside table drawers.  Cleaning out my desk will help give me a place for keeping track of bills.

I’m not sure how this is going to work.  I’ve already experienced the setback of being sick, so at least I’m prepared for that.  As the year progresses, hopefully I can keep up with my goals.  One thing that helps is not depriving yourself, which is why I’m not cutting out all pleasures (still have coke for instance).  It also helps to have someone to keep you accountable, so I have a couple of friends, my Things, and now you guys.  

Do any of you have resolutions or goals for this year?

~ Alice