You would think being stuck in the house all day every day, I’d have more time to update this blog. I am certainly spending much more of my time gaming these days. I am now playing in three different weekly games, plus spending Sunday afternoons talking about gaming on Wandering DMs, and many spare hours during the week working on a new unannounced Wandering DMs project (hint: more D&D). So why am I having so much trouble posting here?
Part of it I’m sure is simply that I’ve filled so many spare hours with gaming that I just don’t have the time. But also I think without downtime away from the hobby I find myself less in that retrospective or analytic mindset that fuels this blog. Often my blog posts are a means for me to marshal my thoughts on a given topic, and that requires some quiet time away from the hobby to reflect. To some degree my Sunday afternoon Wandering DMs shows scratch that itch, but there’s nothing quite like sitting down to write out one’s thoughts.
I also often use this blog as a sort of personal record to go back to when trying to remember what dates certain things happend, or what I thought about an issue. For example, I remember that back at the end of February, just before the pandemic hit, I was surprised to find myself attending two gaming conventions in a row, and that in both cases Dan bussed up from Brooklyn to join me. Were those really two consecutive weekends?
Yup, Dan came up for TotalCon on 2/20 – 2/23, and then again for PAX East on 3/1. At the time it felt quite exorbitant — I couldn’t believe Dan was willing to sign up for so much travel, especially given that the latter was thrown together so last minute. Now I’m actually super grateful that we did that, it was like one last hurrah into the gaming convention scene, and I’m really not sure if or when we’ll see activities like that again. And heck, I’m just glad to have spent two weekends in a row spending real world face time with a friend I now only get to see on my computer screen. But I was only able to confirm it happened that way by looking up the dates of those events on their websites – it seems I didn’t post a thing about either here.
In terms of leaving a record, I suppose our YouTube channel is also supplying that now. In fact, you can go look up our show from the TotalCon floor as well as the one filmed at PAX East, which definitely released over two consecutive Sundays. And now I’ve totally derailed myself watching Dan opine on the latter one about how the Amish evaluate forms of technology based on how they bring communities together (eg. fancy outdoor barbecue sets) vs. those that isolate (TV, cell phones, etc.). What a curious thing to be talking about scant days before we’d all be confined to our houses.
Man, this post is getting away from me. What I was trying to talk about? Right, quarantine, and how many games I’m playing as a result. Last night we finally got our old Sunday night group back together again for a new campaign, the first time since the quarantine hit. It was so good to see those guys again, and just spend a few hours throwing dice together, even if they were 3D animated dice on a computer screen. We had a lot of hurdles to get over to make that happen – one member was trapped in California away from the comforts of home, and another found that our old time slot no longer worked now that he had to juggle taking care of kids at home. Both of those are finally resolved, and even though in the past I would have thought three weekly games is complete madness, I’m really glad to have this one back on the calendar.
The thing is, I guess I’m stacking up my schedule like this just so I don’t have time to think about the crazy situation we’re all in. I’m so busy I just don’t have time recognize the reality of it. But maybe that’s bad, maybe I do need to sit down and just reflect more often. It kind of feels a bit like my first year at summer camp. Every day is packed with activities that I really enjoy, and yet I kind of just want to go home.
4 thoughts on “Gaming Under Quarantine”
Not necessarily advocating for more blogging (though I probably wouldn’t complain about that 😉 ), but it’s important to give yourself some downtime(*) from whatever you’re doing. Aside from pithy thoughts about “absence makes the heart grow fonder” or the like, downtime is when your subconscious is able to analyze matters, internalize lessons, and make creative connections. I’ve been in the same boat of doing more gaming than I had been before, and I think that’s part of why I’ve slowed a bit on my own blog posts in favor of taking some online courses related to other interests.
(*): “Downtime” being relative to what you’re focusing on. It doesn’t have to be kicking back and relaxing, just avoiding going full bore on the same thing all day.
I’d imagine it’s even more of a challenge for you, given that your professional work is also in gaming, so you shouldn’t feel bad or weird about easing back on here 🙂
Very wise words sir. I know from experience that my rate of blogging does ebb and flow, so I’m not too worried about it. It is a little disappointing when I think of how recently I was in such a good flow about posting here very regularly, but I’m sure it will come again!
Hi Paul! You might have mentioned elsewhere (like Wandering DMs, where I’m a few months behind), but are you running anything at Con of Champions? It was from, I believe, this blog I heard about it initially, so just wondered if you were participating. Anyhow, thanks!
We most certainly are! I will be personally moderating a panel titled “Creating Custom Monsters”, and Dan and I are co-DMing two games. I’m pretty sure all of them still have tickets available. Here are some links:
Sunday Game: https://tabletop.events/conventions/con-of-champions/schedule/488
Monday Game: https://tabletop.events/conventions/con-of-champions/schedule/467