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Chris G. Williams Beware: I mix tech and personal interests here.

No no D'Arcy, I'm not quitting GWB. Far from it.  In fact, I may occasionally stray from the fold and experience a little bloggish rumspringa if you will, but as long as Messirs Alexander, Julian & Co. will have me, I'll be here.

I'm not quitting Magenic. Not even close. The two best career decisions I ever made were, in order: 1) joining Magenic and 2) moving to Minneapolis. I've been given more room for professional growth and development than pretty much anywhere I've ever been. (We're hiring by the way, if you're interested drop me a line through my blog.)

Despite previous blog posts to the contrary, I'm obviously not quitting game development. I've been spending a lot of time in XNA of late, and every day I learn something new. Now that 2.0 is out, I'm even busier.

So, you ask, what's coming to an end?

Most of you probably don't know this, although if you've met me, you might have a clue. I'm a bit of a packrat. I prefer the slightly more enlightened term "collector" but honestly, that's mostly BS. I have tremendous amount of stuff and it takes up a tremendous amount of room. What kind of stuff do I collect, you may wonder...

It started when I was about 7 or 8. I began collecting bottle caps. There wasn't a contest going on, and there was no real rhyme or reason behind it. One day, I just started shoving them in my pockets. Before long, I had somewhere around 3000 of them. As a typical 8 year old boy, I wasn't terribly discriminating in where I got them. I had small hands and could shove them down into the machine and scoop them out. (Yes folks, we're talking about the metal bottlecaps found on glass bottles, 8 was a long time ago...) I would also pick up any I saw laying around, ask my friends for theirs and keep my own of course. I also never bothered washing any of them, and some were rather... umm... sticky, as you can guess.

Eventually, my collection vanished. For a long time I was convinced someone stole it, after all these things were pure gold to me. Looking back now, I realize that my mom probably tossed it. (Thanks a lot Mom...) This did nothing to dissuade me from my newfound love of collecting though, as the next year I discovered Dungeons & Dragons. heh

Yes, I was THAT guy. No, I'm not giving up D&D. Hell hasn't frozen over just yet.

Anyway, over the years I have "collected" a tremendous amount of stuff. I've got:

  • computers that haven't booted in decades, motherboards, monitors, pieces and parts. I have a box of dead mice. Why didn't I throw them away?  No clue...  and I have modems, miscellaneous PC cards that I don't even recognize. Hard drives, floppy drives, CD drives, SCSI, IDE, you name it...
  • magazines that haven't been read in years - some haven't even been published in years
  • books that haven't been opened in years, if at all
  • Toys of every imaginable description
  • computer games on media that can't even be read. (We'll talking old school here, like 5 1/4" floppy editions of Ultima IV, and various Commodore64 games, for example.)
  • comic books that I don't even remember buying or reading.
  • calendars from 10 years ago. Some of them are hanging on my walls.
    (Those of you who are paying attention know I've moved a few times in that time period.)
  • mountains of demo discs from magazines, books, trade shows, msdn events, etc...
  • arcade machines (last count was 5 working and 2 more in progress) - These things are HUGE and take a lot of room.
  • Catalogs, lots of catalogs, like Office Max, Staples, Paper Goods, American Science and Surplus, etc... some of these are 10-15 years old. Some of them were from my Navy days.
  • boxes, for pretty much every piece of electronics I ever owned. if it came in a box, odds are good I have it stored somewhere, just in case I need to return it. Some of these have been out of warranty for a very long time.

When I moved here, I unpacked EVERYTHING. I found boxes of stuff that hadn't been opened in at least 5 moves.

So... what's coming to an end? (I know, I'm dragging this one out a bit, bear with me...)

Lately, I've been watching these Clean Sweep shows, where they come in and basically gut your house. I'm not that bad yet, but as I get older, I don't see it getting any better unless I take some action now. So... it's time for me to make some hard choices and decide what's staying and what's going.

So yeah, that's pretty much it. My days of being a complete packrat are (hopefully) ending. I'm spending this weekend going through a lot of stuff I can live without and figuring out what to do with it. Some of it is junk, and some of it is worth money. The junk is getting tossed, the stuff worth having (by someone who isn't me) will probably go on ebay or craigs list.

We'll see how it goes.

Posted on Saturday, November 24, 2007 3:39 PM General Interest | Back to top


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