I'm scheduled for heart surgery in two months, though they'll likely move me farther down the line as a rather low-priority patient (young, otherwise healthy, manageable/stable via medications). Nothing open, they want to get through one of the blood vessels and zap the naughty bit of tissue into submission. There's a very high chance it'll get rid of my worsening arrhythmia that's been exacerbating the problem with one of the valves for the last couple of years. Best case scenario, I'll be off two meds almost simultaneously and start seeing quality of life improvements within a week. It's not without its risks, absolutely, but beats alternatives with the fervour of an amphetamine-soaked monkey.
Work goes pretty damn well. Changing carrot for the stick solved most of my TAing problems, got myself up to speed enough to start contributing to the grant project, and passed two out of three exams for this semester early. I'm stuck in my own research, but that's hardly a surprise. Lucky breaks have their limit, and I've been on a hot streak since February. Honestly, the worst part is that I got to the point (one of many to come, no doubt) with the math where the only viable strategy is to go back to basics and keep trying various methods, new and old alike, until something moves. I'm yet to get to the desperation of hungover Putnam taker, but throwing half-random, half-educated shit at it and methodically checking what sticks could spell most of my summer. am_Unition - that's how "theorist's rigour" looks up-close when you're out of options.
Maybe it's the facemask and social distancing making everyone bored out of their mind, but I've been getting noticeably more attention from women over the last couple of weeks. Dunno, maybe the world is ending for real, but it's no less flattering and ego-boosting.
Played a bunch of Paranoia over the weekend, currently plan on redoubling my efforts pitching mk's Wayfarers to the group. It's a slow process, but they were equally sceptical about other stuff I brought to the table they ended up loving (e.g. Dark Heresy, Neuroshima, Teenagers from Outer Space). I understand their resistance to mechanics on a superficial level, but that's about it.
Twylos is tight and better written than most mainstream settings I've seen to date. There's stuff to do and places to be for player characters. Enough detail to paint the picture without oversaturating readers with pointless trivia, and guilds/organisations/cities (and, by extension, their people) have understandable allegiances and motivations. Or, at the very least, ones that don't collapse after asking 'why?' a couple of times. Lastly, there aren't legions of established NPCs/author avatars that only let you do anything because they can't be bothered with chaff. Essentially, the opposite of Forgotten Realms on all of those points. As a mildly-seasoned GM who likes getting his hands dirty, I loved it.
Also, come on:
A home. Sadly, my friends, Velanieh is empty. Barren of Master like one’s elderly nursemaid, these halls no longer ring with the sounds of laughter, gay parties, her lovely voice. Look elsewhere.
It feels like a real place, with its own flavour and tone. Probably my biggest complaint would be about a few low-contrast maps that were a chore to read.
Really, I should have started by introducing them to Twylos instead of showing the player's handbook first. It's definitely not bad in and of itself, and I'd have to actually playtest it to have anything resembling critique, but the "GURPS-y AD&D" comparison is inevitable and not always favourable. Hopefully, I'll get to share something post-game sooner rather than later.