I hope everyone had a great Christmas. From the sounds of it most of you did. As for myself, I was celebrating with the in-laws in a three day Festivus marathon. I actually got a bunch of nice stuff. C0D4, Guitar Hero 3 and Assassin’s Creed. I also got numerous giftcards with which I picked up the Bourne Trilogy, the Firefly box set and another 13 month Xbox Live subscription card. Usually I pick those up at online retailers for a discount but I had a WorstBuy gift card that I wasn’t going to use otherwise, so it went towards that. Why people would pay per-month when they can get a card for 1/2 the price is beyond me. I also ordered a few tshirts from Penny Arcade and Jinx.

The big enchilada is that combined birthday and Christmas monitary gifts are enough to afford me the new graphics card I’ve been saving for. I’ll drop $600 at NewEgg some time next week. I’m not in too much of a hurry as component prices typically go down after the holidays. I’m thinking I’m going to go with the 8800GTS series, the 92nm cores, not the bigger ones. Recent benchmarks have put them almost toe-to-toe with their $500 GTX big brothers for half the cost. I’ll also probably need a new power supply to handle the load as well. If there’s anything left over I’ll probably upgrade my aging hard drives or get SATA versions of my optical drives. As much awesome fun as my 360 is bringing, I can’t wait to test drive a new beastly computer. Crysis in 16×12, here I come. 🙂


It’s time for Matt’s annual obligatory Christmas morning post. I’m sitting in the den of my in-laws, waiting on Christmas morning breakfast to be made so I figured it would be a good time to check in. I hope everyone is doing well and spending some time with friends and family. Here’s we’ve been in festivus mode since Sunday. Last night we actually spent the night, opening presents at midnight, and will be here all day. In related news, their new hot tub is up and running, just in time.

I just wanted to take a second and thank all you guys for listening to me ramble on about nothing in particular for yet another year. It means a lot that you guys stop by, read, and chime in from time to time. It makes it all worth doing.

So, have some nog for me, enjoy the day, and a very Merry Christmas to all of you!


A very complicated situation started brewing this weekend. It involves people moving to a retirement village and a house being vacant. There was talk about Lauren and I potentially moving into said vacant house. This would be awkward and I’m not sure how much detail I should go into. To simplify things, lets just say that we’ve potentially just bought a house. Now, this is a nice house. Good solid construction, very livable. Not to mention free. There are numerous downsides however, all of which need to be weighed against the major upside of having a large rent free living space.

First, our commutes to work would double or potentially triple. In my case it would go from 20 minutes up a rarely used highway to an hour and a half up the most major freeway in the state. Second would be the surrounding area. It’s really far away from everything we like/enjoy about where we’re living now. No restaurants, no stores, no friends, no church, no convenience. Third, it’s really too close to things I don’t enjoy. The dirt mall, bad movie theaters, lots of congestion, lots of traffic. It’s also really, really close to my in-laws. Almost too close. I love my in-laws (that’s actually not a lie), they’re very nice people. But it would be like Everybody Loves Raymond, they’d be right down the street. For those who would understand the analogy, it would be like moving from Amherst NH, to the old stinky part of Nashua NH. Fourth, the house needs a lot of work. A lot. New everything would be required before moving in. Nothing major or really time consuming, but everything “little” thing. For example, it would need new carpet in every single room, new sheet rock in some places, a new paint job, stuff like that. It wouldn’t need new plumbing or new windows or a new roof, nothing crazy. There’s a bunch of little stuff, but those are most of my major concerns.

So, I’m between a very interesting rock and a very sharp hard place. On one hand, it would make life affordable. We wouldn’t be paying rent anymore. Lauren could get a new car. I could pay off school loans and we could save for a real house of our own. On the other hand, there is a lot of work to be done, a lot of downsides and life would be hard for at least a couple years.

This is definitely something that’s going to need to be discussed at length before I decide on anything.

My army grows

My good buddy Dane just called me last night and told me he was setting up his new 360 as he spoke. That’s one more for Matt’s 360 army. I’m going to institute a Wednesday game again if it friggin kills me. He also picked up Call of Duty. Once my brother gets online when he gets back to college, that’ll make five close immediate friends who all have a 360 and CoD4. That’s never happened before. You guys are the ones with the new console, but this is like Christmas for me. The closest I’ve come is 3 of the TCC members having Gears of War, but there was just something about it that didn’t lend itself to casual gaming. Now we’ve got a real shot at some fun.

So, listen and repeat after me and probably to your wives/girlfriends:

“Wednesday is my game night. I play video games with “the guys” on Wednesday. I work hard and deserve some game time. Wednesday is my game night”

Just keep repeating that to yourself until it sinks in.

Chip’s on the verge, Matt is considering one as well. Now all we need is Chris and our team will be complete. lol.

Morning Coffee

As I sit here with my warm cup of morning goodness, checking my various daily websites for fresh content nuggets, I’m relieved that my week alone in the office is coming to an end. My boss(es) have been out of town on business and I was left to manage the office in their stead. I’ve done my best and have kept the work moving across my desk at a steady pace. I think I’ve actually gotten more done this week than I have in the past month or two. I am, however, ready to stop being the secretary / manager / accountant / mailing dept / art dept / photographer. I don’t mind the last two, but the rest really aren’t in my skill set. Don’t get me wrong, a monkey can label and ship out a package or print off an invoice, but I really don’t enjoy taking orders from point A to Z. I’m not sure anyone does or would.

On top of that I had to photograph a Christmas party on my own last night and another one tonight. Luckily the boss, though jet lagged and possibly cranky, will be with me, at least for moral support.

Completely changing gears, I was curious as to what everyone else was wishing for for Christmas? Just out of complete and blantent curiosity. It’s not like I have the money to get anyone the present of their dreams. Sorry guys. I’m just curious what games, gadgets and gizmos you have on your list this year. If you don’t have a list, or aren’t really sure, then what are you looking forward to in the coming months?

Personally, there’s a game or two in Jan/Feb that looks interesting. Frontlines (demo now available on XBLM) looks kinda cool. Army of Two, the new Brothers in Arms, Burnout Paradise, and Kingdome Under Fire: COD all look kinda strong.

Anyway, I should get back to work. Still a lot to do to get ready for the shoot tonight, then it’s a non-stop rollercoaster of crazy this weekend as we have 3 Christmas parties in a row, followed by helping someone move to a new apartment on Monday. Ah, the fun never stops.

Matt out.