Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Monday on Tuesday

The older two SuperKids each had concerts last night, so I took the day off. I could have just left early, I suppose, but, well, given that I actually get paid time off with this job, I figured, what the hell... a Monday off is a pearl beyond price when you work for a call center.

As it turns out, the entire weekend was one of those very rare, shimmering moments in space time that you really wish would never end. Oh, it had its passing irritations, but for the most part, I had a very good time with SuperGirlfriend and the SuperKids. So much so, that I hated to come back to work today even more than usual.

At SuperGirlfriend's wise recommendation, I keep reminding myself that today is actually Tuesday, when it feels like Monday. That always helps... a little. Even better is the fact that my random day off falls this week on Friday. So I'm only here for three days... I just have to get through them with my mind intact.

So far, so good.

Highlights of the weekend would be taking SuperGirlfriend out to dinner Friday night at Applebee's; driving to the UK campus in Lexington with her to see Super Dependable Teen take part in some language competition (the UK campus is gorgeous, and Lexington itself looks like a lovely city to live in); taking SG and the SuperKids out to dinner at a really nice Italian restaurant on the other side of the river on Sunday for Mother's Day... minor moments to an outside observer, but pure distilled joy to me.

Probably the primary change SuperGirlfriend has made to my life -- and it's a profound one -- is that I'm never lonely any more. Prior to moving here, loneliness was a constant in my life... I never really felt as if I belonged anywhere, or as if anyone out there really cared all that much about me, or that I mattered in any particular degree. In fact, such was my life that, had I died suddenly in my apartment, it's unlikely anyone would have missed me all that quickly, or bothered to check up on me for days. It's a very sad feeling, when you know that you could kick off in your sleep and nobody would even bother to look for you for days. (Oh, my employer might have called my house, but after leaving a few messages, they just would have fired me as a no show. Nobody else would bothered to follow up. My family would have eventually come around looking for me, but I might very well have been little more than a skeleton by then... I used to go weeks without anyone calling me or dropping by to visit.)

SG frets sometimes that I'm suffering terribly due to all her 'baggage'... the kids (whom I adore), the ex-husband (who is largely a tool, but who is also largely immaterial to me, as I long ago learned not to let fools trouble me overly, and he really only gets up my ass when he's making SG or the SuperKids miserable, which is, unfortunately, often), the need for me to keep working at a job I hate in order to pay the rent on our lovely apartment. But none of it matters, none of it figures, none of it means anything compared to the very genuine joy that SG and the SuperKids bring into my life every day.

I'm never lonely any more. Never. If you don't know what that means, well, you're as lucky a person as I am, and must have been luckier all your life.

On a much more trivial note, I was feeling so good this weekend that I decided to spoil myself a little, so I finally just said 'fuggit' and paid the EXTORTIONATE amount that Comic Book World had on their Unique Silver Surfer -- a walloping $40 (with tax, natch). I'd long ago made myself a promise that I'd never pay more than $20 for a single piece of plastic, however much I wanted it, but, as I said, I was having a good weekend, and it was a pay week, and I'd gotten my state income tax check, so, what the hell. I snatched that puppy up. And now it's home on my shelves, with the rest of the Defenders, while the even rarer and more pricey chromium Silver Surfer that SuperGirlfriend gave me in my Christmas stocking a while back is over with the other FF allies (along with my Vet Dr. Strange, my Experienced Black Panther, the Spider-Man with the FF TA, and the three Inhumans we have clix of to date).

I like that.

Spending the $40 was stupid... well... an unwise indulgence, anyway... for many reasons, and since nobody out there really cares, I'm going to detail many if not all of them.

First, of course, there's the simple fact that any time you spend this kind of money on a stupid little piece of plastic, especially when you're helping to feed, clothe, and shelter three kids (none of whom you get to take a tax deduction for, to boot), well, you are by definition being kinda foolish. But this foolishness is further compounded in the unreal, subjective world of HeroClix itself, for several other reasons:

(1) I never get to play HeroClix any more, other than against myself. This isn't to say I won't use my new Silver Surfer in a game at some point in the future (I may pit him against his chromium alter ego, if I'm feeling especially whimsical), but, still, a game against one self isn't at all like playing a real game of HeroClix. So spending $40 on a game I really never get to play is kind of foolish.

(2) Above and beyond all this, the Silver Surfer, in clix form, may well be the biggest disappointment HeroClix has ever doled out to its target market. The Silver Surfer has what Jack Kirby called 'the Power Cosmic'. Basically, this means he can do any damn thing he wants. We've seen stories where he causes gigantic tidal waves, he levitates the Great Pyramid, he creates enormous earthquakes, he sets up floating energy barriers in the sky... this is all in addition to his normal schtick of flying at vastly faster than light speeds across interstellar distances, being strong enough to fairly easily defeat the Thing in a fist fight, being pretty much completely indestructible, and having the ability to toss around energy blasts of nearly infinite range and power, any time he feels like it.

Now, we all realize that no single figure can be invincible in a combat game; otherwise, nobody would ever play anything else. Nonetheless, the figures in HeroClix cover a wide range of power, with some characters being defined very simply, with few if any actual super powers (which are reflected by squares of color over certain numbered statistics on the combat dial) while others have what we gamers call a 'rainbow dial' indicating many different powers.

The Surfer should have had a rainbow dial -- if not in his Unique version (which, arguably, could be the Silver Surfer after much of his Power Cosmic was drained away from him in an early FF issue), then certainly in his more expensive, chromium, Power Cosmic version.

Instead, neither version is particularly useful, especially for the exorbitant point prices they command (177 for the Unique, 200 for the Power Cosmic). Neither version of the Surfer gets much in the way of actual colors (powers) on his dial, and in fact, the lower cost Unique (the one I just shelled out two $20s for) is arguably the better figure, as he starts out with higher stats and one click of Running Shot, an ability that the Power Cosmic chromium Surfer never gets. (Which absolutely bites hard, but, you know, never mind.)

So, essentially, SG shelled out God knows how much to get me a pretty much useless piece of plastic I greatly desired, and I just shelled out God and I both know exactly how much to get another one that's nearly as useless, but that I desired even more, largely because I'm mental.

As a final little twist, there's yet another reason why this was foolish --

(3) The next Marvel expansion WizKids is bringing out, after Sinister (which is due out next month) will be called Supernova, and while absolutely nothing is confirmed for the set as yet, most of us think it's a virtual certainty that we'll get a new Silver Surfer fig in it, since the Critical Mass Surfers that I've been describing are now retired from active play (which means nothing to me, but much to street legal players). And that Surfer, for all I know, will have the kind of dial that the Surfer deserves... which means, wasting money on these two was, well, a waste.

But, you know, I wanted them both and now I have them both and if at some point in the future I end up wishing they were both made out of something edible, well, that's life.

It's also probably foolish to count on WizKids new game designer to give us a decent Silver Surfer dial, since he's so royally screwed up nearly everything else he's designed in the last three sets. But, still, I live in hope...

...and in joy. Entirely because of SuperGirlfriend and the SuperKids.


  1. Heh..."irritation" = a house full of women getting two teens ready for prom, with me shuttling Super Dependable Teen to a friend's house (on the other end of town)to work on a geometry project, in the middle of the prom hysteria, and then dragging Highlander along to go pick her back up and getting stuck in Saturday evening church traffic.

    I had a nice weekend, too, H. I KNOW the girls did, as they've each told me so. We are a pretty good team, I suppose.

    Sweet post, Darling Boy.

  2. Hope springs eternal?

    Yeah, yeah, I guess it does.



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