xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
For the past few nights I've been having another "dream sequence," where each dream follows the previous one in an episodic manner.

The first one had me, one of my IRL co-workers, and a few other people as agents for a counter-cyberterrorism group, on a submarine hanging outside the underwater base of the world's biggest group of cybercriminals. We were monitoring their activity, thwarting it where we could with our own hacking skills, and working out what they were up to. It became apparent shortly before I woke up (far too early, for the record) that they were tracking some of the world's most prominent political and business leaders. Our conclusion was that they were planning assassinations.

The second night, I was on special assignment ground-side, scoping out the areas these people were going to be. Using a mock sniper rifle as reference, I found a number of places where potential assassins could get clear shots that nobody would have ever thought to even try, including one involving sticking the barrel through a rivet hole in a locker in a school locker room.

My actions caught the attention of the FBI, who detained me for questioning. Their attitudes quickly softened after I gave all the intel I'd gathered, a phone call from my superiors, and an all-too-late realization that the "assassination tool" I'd been carrying around all this time was in fact an Airsoft gun that wouldn't have been able to kill anything bigger than a squirrel, they let me go.

Last night had me back on the sub, where we had been cleared to infiltrate the enemy base and take their communications network down. We somehow managed to dock to the underbelly of their base without alerting them, opening a path for our people to get in. I headed down to our computer lab to get orders from my team...when I saw my co-worker talking with the leader of the cybercriminal group. I demanded to know what was going on, and he pointed out that he, and most of the rest of my team, were actually double-agents who had been diverting the agency's attention from the true objective.

Turns out they weren't just cybercriminals, they were aliens...specifically, Inhumans. My dream sequence had just segued into the Marvel Cinematic Universe; the agency I was working for this whole time was S.H.I.E.L.D, and these guys were using the computer systems of the world, via the network interconnectivity left abandoned with the Framework collapsed and the dimensional portal tech devised via the Darkhold, to instigate a worldwide Inhuman invasion in order to conquer humanity and claim Earth for themselves. The two of them, plus 4 other members of the team who were traitors, gave me the ultimatum: Join them or die with the rest of humanity.

I went with Option #3 by grabbing his computer by the power cord and swinging it at them like a wrecking ball. Six solid hits on the chin with a heavy piece of technology led to six necks snapping in rapid succession, which was immediately followed by me being surrounded by six dead bodies. Sadly, while I'd succeeded in dispensing justice on them for betraying their oaths and the whole world, it left me with no time to stop their dimensional portal from opening. Soon, a broadcast was sent out all over the world by the leader of the Inhuman invasion force, letting us all know one thing very clearly:

Our world was theirs now.

Cut to black and me waking up.

Damn.
xaq_the_aereon: No seriously, what? (AereonWTF)
4 years ago I cracked a tooth on a gumball. Got a filling put in for it.
At some point in the past year the filling fell out. As it was causing me no pain or discomfort, I made the idiotic decision to ignore it.
2 days ago I took a bite out of a slice of pizza and got the tiniest bit of food stuck in there, and it hurt like hell. That drove me to finally get it dealt with.
Yesterday I went to the dentist figuring they'd fix some cavities and replace the filling...but it turns out that, as a result of my idiotic decision, the damage had gotten so bad that I had a cavity in my jawbone below it and the tooth in front of it.

I had two options:
1) Costly surgery that my dental insurance wouldn't cover to remove a small section of my jawbone to deal with the cavity so that they could save the teeth...which was financially not an option.
2) Lose 2 teeth and, at some point down the line, get either 2 false teeth implanted or a partial denture.

So between my wisdom teeth about 15 years ago and this, I now have a gap large enough to slide my tongue through on the lower-right side of my mouth.

I should be bothered by this, but I'm...oddly okay with it, I guess? I dunno.

Still, I can now let one major part of my past rest for good; for years now my answer to "If you could change one moment in your past, what would it be?" has been to forego an AOL chat session that led me to an online relationship that took my life down a completely different path than I would've ever expected...but given how it had more positives than negatives overall and I've pretty well let go of it, I can now unequivocally say that the one thing I would change is I wouldn't buy that damned gumball.

Amazing how much impact the tiniest decisions in our lives can have. Log onto an AOL chatroom one particular night, have a life-changing encounter....buy a gumball, lose some teeth.

Sheesh.
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
END RESULT: FAILURE.

My prediction was correct after all; the Zeta Metroids ended my attempt at Hard Mode.

3 attempts to defeat the first one ended in failure; not only did I get killed all 3 times, but approximately 85% of my shots were blocked, including all of my Super Missiles. None of the strategy suggestions I've read have helped. These things are simply beyond my ability and, more damningly, my patience and tolerance.

For now, my AM2R runs are once again over.

xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)


Took 2 more attempts, but I finally beat the damn thing in the Tower. I have to admit, that was a much hollower victory than I expected. It didn't have the overwhelming joy of overcoming a major obstacle and bettering myself in the process, like scoring my first Omega Metroid kill in v1.0 after a few attempts...no, this was more akin to clearing an obstacle that, due to past experiences with it, never should have been an obstacle in the first place. It felt more like getting past a traffic jam than anything.

Should've been "YEAH! I feel great now!"
Ended up being "Finally. Fuck that stupid thing."

I almost got waxed by the drones on the way to the item room (partially due to having no Power Bombs to room-wipe with), which would have ended this playthrough prematurely via ragequit file deletion, but I made it to the Screw Attack.

Once again, no satisfaction...guess that's just one more reason why I don't do Hard Mode on games that often. It just doesn't do anything for me.

Anyway, typical Screw Attack-driven sequence break followed to the Gravity Suit, with the Plasma Beam being where the Screw Attack normally is (huh, the two just swapped places), and now...I'm back at the Golden Temple.

Why? Because I've skipped most of the Metroids so far due to refusing to go after them until I had the Gravity Suit. Bad enough they're cheapskates with the powerup recharges, didn't want to deal with the breeding grounds' life-sapping floors while I was at it.

So yeah, here I am, about to go wail on a bunch of Alpha Metroids when I should be possibly ready to take on a Zeta Metroid.

Possibly.
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
Long story short:


This is insufficient to take on anything above a Gamma Metroid, and even then difficulties are had.

Currently I'm at the Tower, where the Screw Attack has been placed. Unfortunately, to get to it I have to get past the monstrosities in the Tower after I turn the power back on.

This includes the mini-boss battle with the Modular Weapon Platform.

My record against it in Easy and Normal Modes is 7-0.

My record against it in Hard Mode now stands at 0-2.

The drained-yet-tense feeling in my arms suggests to me that it's time to give this game a rest for a while, lest I find myself putting a fist through my computer.
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
Remember that close call I had at work?

Got feedback from management today. I'd expected to take some repercussions for it due to being partially to blame.

Apparently they've decided that I'm ENTIRELY to blame, despite the other guy's blatant safety policy violations. I'm not fired or anything, just feeling like I got thrown under the bus here.

Sister tries to strangle me to death as a toddler, 6th grade teacher renegs on an offer to not fail me after I spend weeks busting my ass off for her, former CO busts me for a civilian worker threatening to strangle me, former boss says he wants to talk to me for a bit (nothing serious or bad, he says) before telling me I'm fired, now this...

Starting to wonder if the trust issues I've had most of my life were something I actually needed to get over or not.
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)

Got to the bottom of the Distribution Center's portion of the main shaft and found it was blocked by the earthquake-moved lava, thus learning that I had to clear out all the Alphas, Gammas, and Zetas after all. Phooey.

This meant backtracking all the Golden Temple due to having skipped the Breeding Grounds area of it over my Bomb supply issue early on. So here I was, ready to try my luck against an Omega, and I'm having to track down 3 Alphas.

After that load of malarkey, , I went after the Omegas. Long story short? The Zeta Metroids are worse than them. In fact, of the 4 forms, the Omega Metroids have gone from being the most horrific on my first playthrough to the least dangerous of them all (assuming I have the firepower to take them on, at least). Case in point?


FLAWLESS VICTORY



Those 3 Alphas earlier hurt me more than all 4 Omega Metroids combined did. Honestly, of the 4 main evolutions, the Zeta Metroids are the worst. They're almost as durable as the Omegas, plus they're a lot faster and have an annoying habit of blocking my shots. Alphas and Gammas I just kite around to get under them and fire a few shots off. But the Omega Metroids? Quick tap of the jump button to hop, fire a Super Missile into its gut, dodge, repeat until it's dead.

ANYWAY.

After that I spent about 3 minutes looking over the map, trying to figure out where the Spring Ball, the last powerup I didn't have, could be. I finally noticed the part of the Distribution Center I'd missed where the Screw Attack is normally located. With that in hand, now I can do the final bit of backtracking to the handful of powerups I had to skip due to not having the Speed Ball Boost available.

In any case, yeah, this playthrough's about done. Only missing a few Missile Tanks, then it's off to slay the Queen.



N...No, no, I said slay the Queen, not Save the Queen. I know that I really like that picture, but this isn't the time for it...
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)


Shortly after my last post, I continued on a quest to find some more E-Tanks in order to be able to hopefully survive the battle with the Torizo, the Chozo Statue that guards what is normally the Space Jump but was in my case the Varia Suit.

What I got instead was the Screw Attack, which allowed me to pull the same sequence break [personal profile] kjorteo pulled to go get the Gravity Suit, the only powerup whose location isn't randomized. I also found 2 more E-Tanks and the Spider Ball in the process, making survivability and, more importantly, tube navigation less of a hassle.

As a result, the battle with the Torizo was
A) a piece of cake
and B) a complete waste of time. XD

Still, it was nice to no longer be in "every enemy in One Punch Man" mode anymore. In fact, it wound up getting me a bit arrogant, as I decided to go after more challenging enemies, specifically Serris, which normally guards the Ice Beam.

And that's where I finally found the damn Bombs, thus ending my trappings and restarts and taking so much tension off the replay that it was ridiculous. It's funny how missing out on one of the most basic powerups in a game can change how you play it so much.

Continuing on, I took a detour surface-side to the GFS Thoth, figuring that with 5 E-Tanks, 160 missiles, 10 Super Missiles, and 10 Power Bombs, I could take on Genesis no problem.

Long story short: Nope.

Also, I think I found a glitch: In a cave far to the left of the Thoth is a small room that's supposed to have a Power Bomb sitting behind a frog enemy. All I found in there was the frog. No power-up, even though the map is indicating such.

Hrm. Oh well.
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
Since [personal profile] kjorteo and [personal profile] xyzzysqrl were kind enough to point out the fact that it exists to me, I decided to upgrade my copy of AM2R to the version with Random+ on it.

The only way I can describe the randomization I've been dealt is "Richter in the Inverted Castle." I can dish out a lot of pain and move around like crazy, but if something so much as sneezes on me I'm toast. Case in point, here's where I'm at equipment-wise after making a quick "THANK GOD I FINALLY GOT ONE" save in the Hydro Station area:



As you can see, I am loaded out the ass on weapons and mobility: I got the Spazer and Space Jump stupidly early, and just recently picked up the Ice Beam. Additionally, I have a quartet of Super Missiles (which has resulted in numerous encounters with Alpha Metroids ending before the "Du-nu-NAAH!" fanfare is even done), and 4 Power Bombs...but you'll notice that I don't have the regular Bombs yet.

This has made things interesting, frustrating, and precarious. On more than 1 occasion now I've had to restart simply because I've trapped myself in an area that you have to use Bombs to get into and, more importantly, out of. Additionally, it seems regular Bombs have something Power Bombs don't: recoil. With neither Bombs, Spider Ball, nor Spring Ball to help, traversing Morph Ball tunnels has occasionally proven impossible. (EDIT: I have since learned that it's possible to just stand up and, by spin-jumping forward, climb into a ledge that's 1 block higher...came in useful when I tried leaving the Hydro Station and thought I was gonna have to restart!)

...Oh, and the "THANK GOD I FINALLY GOT ONE" from earlier? That's referring to my one Energy Tank. Avoiding damage has proven to be a necessity in this shake-up, as I found out when the laser-spewing statue head that stops you when you're leaving the Golden Temple killed me. The rematch was spent relearning the patterns for its attacks and how to dodge them (as well as relearning that holding both the angle-up and angle-down buttons allows you to fire straight up while crouched...very useful). The re-rematch was spent killing the bastard with only 8 damage to my name.

The fragility was not helped by the fact that the area where the Varia Suit should have been was home to the Hi-Jump Boots instead...which, I'll remind you, I found after the Space Jump.

It's putting an interesting vibe on the game, that's for certain.
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
Okay, something I need to get off my chest just for the sake of saying it, keeping my facts straight for when I have to talk about this with one of my supervisors tomorrow, and so on. Figured this was as good a place as any to get it out in the open without getting it *too* out in the open.

So long story short, I just about got smacked by the tines of a forklift at work tonight due to failures all around to follow basic safety procedures. Thank GOD this happened after the store closed for the night.

Coworker:
-Did not have area he was putting freight up gated off as per safety training when moving freight on/off overhead storage.
-Was driving a forklift far too fast, especially for an enclosed area.

Me:
-Did not wait for him to finish where he was before trying to get by (thought I could zip past real quick while he was putting a pallet up, figuring he'd be motionless for a good 5-6 seconds; he was faster than that).


Had he been gated off or driving at a safe pace, OR had I simply waited a few seconds for him to finish what he was doing and then get by once he left, everything would have been fine. As it is, though, the holes in the swiss-cheese slices lined up and a near-disaster slipped through them.

He blew it, I blew it, plain and simple. I was mad and freaked out about it for most of the night...y'know, for obvious reasons of HOLY HELL HE JUST ABOUT KILLED ME...but in retrospect he's not entirely at fault here.

Will just have to see how this plays out, I guess.
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
Okay, so apparently the inbox glitch was due to shenanigans on Livejournal's end. One query to the dev team here and I had the issue sorted out.

I retract my comment at the end of my last post, for this is now an AWESOME start to things. Kudos, Dreamwidth!
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Default)
Is there any way to get this thing to quit flooding my inbox with the exact same 2 messages over and over again?

It's literally just "Your entries have been successfully imported. Your entries have failed to be imported and will not be retried." over and over and over again.

Seriously, not off to a great start here, Dreamwidth. :/
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Aereon Xaq)
I hardly post anything on here anymore, and I dunno if the new one will see any more use than it, but...yeah, I've opted to transfer over from Livejournal to Dreamwidth.

https://xaq-the-aereon.dreamwidth.org/
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Aereon Xaq)
My doc suggested I bring my blood sugar screenings down from 2/week to 1/week since I apparently had it so well under control.

These are my readings from 2 weeks ago, last week, and 20 minutes ago.

The reason for the sudden 60-point spike? Being on full-time at work had the unintended consequence of having no time to cook meals at home and instead having to eat more at work...which meant hitting the vending machines twice as much as usual.

The moment I got that 141 reading, I had an epiphany I was kicking myself for not having before: make a sandwich, slice it in half (added bonus: I now have a use for my Ulu!), and take it to work each day.

The fact that 1 week of doing this undid 78% of the damage done, and got me back to normal glucose levels, is good, but at the same time, this is a stark reminder for me that just because I have my glucose levels under control does NOT mean my diabetes is gone. I stop working to control it, it's gonna come right back to bite me in the ass.

...I wonder how long it'll be before I have to re-learn this. Well, we'll see.
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Aereon Xaq)
Getting to hang out with [livejournal.com profile] kjorteo and [livejournal.com profile] davidn again was easily the highlight of the trip. Nothing compares to getting to see dear friends again. That said, the con itself was an absolute blast, even if I spent the first day somewhat zombified due to taking the red-eye to get there and the last day feeling like crap because I had to leave....as with most vacations I take, the day leading up to travel is always the worst part for me.

I think my favorite part of the convention, however, was getting to take part in a voice acting panel hosted by Carrizo, owner of the Furrywood website. I got to voice characters for two scenes, one alongside David! The raw audio for both scenes is on the site as well as over on my Tumblr account. We also took part in the karaoke event later that night. I sang Soul Asylum's "Runaway Train" (I was a bit apprehensive about doing so at first due to how high of a bar some of the other performers had set that night, but then the guys right before me buried the damn thing by intentionally butchering some song just to have fun...thanks, guys! :D), while David "sang" the Beatles' "Yellow Submarine." I use quote marks because he was in full rabbit fursuit, where his "voice" is a slide whistle app on his smart phone. Yes, he digitally slide-whistled the whole song. It was hilarious and I am desperately hoping somebody recorded it, because I was too busy laughing to think to go for my phone. (After telling my mom about that, she apparently told dad, who has since been in a state of mental blue-screen. MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!)

(Side note: Earlier today, I decided to do some tinkering in Audacity and spiffy up the VA scene David and I did a little bit. I'm rather happy with how it turned out so far. (UPDATE: Now in Youtube form for those who want to avoid Tumblr!) Sharing this with a few of you was, honestly, the main reason I made this post.)

Still, the whole experience was just phenomenal. The whole time I was there, it just felt... well, I think Teo summed it up perfectly before I left: it felt like I was home. Can't believe it took me over a decade after being introduced to the fandom for the first time to realize that, but that's what the fandom has become to me.

Looking forward to going home again someday soon. :]
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Aereon Xaq)
I got the results from my lab work back on the 4th today. Glucose was back to where it should be, like I knew, but the big concern was how I'd been doing on cholesterol, particularly my triglycerides.

The results were surprising, to say the least. )

So yeah, good news all around, basically.
xaq_the_aereon: I caught it...now what? (Aereon Xaq)
Glucose reading this morning, after spending the past 10+ hours fasting, was 96. I was hoping to have it below 110 on there today so that I get accurate results from the VA when I go to get a baseline reading from them...I think it's safe to say I've met that goal. :]

...Shoot, I was supposed to get going about 10 minutes ago. D:
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