Monday, June 14, 2010

Paraphrasing Christopher Titus...

After some of the headaches I've gone through today, I'm surprised I'm not wandering the countryside killing hookers with a spoon.

The bank I use for the game store got purchased by another bank. The big switchover happened today. That meant I needed to get ahold of all my vendors and update credit card/checking account info so payments would not bounce. As I'm trying to complete step one of the whole process, I hit a snag. The snag necessitates a trip to the bank itself, which is absolutely SWAMPED with less than happy people. The basic conversation to get the first hurdle cleared went something like this...

Bank Employee #1: Welcome to XXXXX, how are you doing today?

Me: Grumpy. This switchover is anything but painless.

BE#1: Welllll... Let's see what we can do about that. XXXXX can in bank services can help you.

Me: Fine. Whatever. Just make things work.

BE#2: What seems to be the problem?

(I toss down the shiny, new business check card they've sent me onto his desk.)

Me: This need to be activated.

BE#2: Well, that is a simple matter. Did you try doing it over the phone?

[A look of  "I'm going to leap over your desk and strangle you" crosses my face.]

Me: Yes. Yes I did. It insists on me inputing a piece of information that I have never possessed in the life of my prior card usage.

BE#2: Well, you should have that information...

[Me interrupting... ...with more than slightly perturbed growl creeping into my voice.]

Me: Not if I've never used the card in the manner where that information is necessary. If it's too much trouble for you to do this, then get me your supervisor and you can explain to him why I'm closing my buisness accounts here.


BE#2: Let's get this working, shall we.

In short, things get working in about a ten minute period after that exchange.

I get back to the store, get things in order, and then a thunderstorm rolls in. Now, I live in Illinois. Thunderstorms roll in all the time during this part of the year. What actually rolls in is an electrical storm of a magnitude that I haven't seen for about a year... ...the last time the cable modem at the store got fried. See where I'm going with this?

Strangely, while our internet was down, our internet-based phone service doesn't miss a beat. Weird.

So, about three hours after I call, the internet company comes and replaces the deep-fried box with a shiny new one.

My guess is that the new cable box will last about a year... sigh...

peace... RHManiac/GopherDave

Sunday, June 13, 2010


As a game store owner, one might think that I am just swimming in gaming enjoyment.

One would be wrong.

I currently run two HERO System 6th Edition games, and I play in a Deadlands: Hell on Earth (classic) game. Every now and then I play some casual Magic: the Gathering or even Friday Night Magic, but in general, I am frequently too busy actually running the store to really game. As a game store owner, it's a good problem to have. =)

All that being said... I still love games. I mean, I own a game store... I had *BETTER* love games. Loving games means that I still think about games and game design. As such, I am rethinking my own fantasy heartbreaker game setting, Tai'eres. Mentally, it's about time for my brain to latch onto something game design related. I'm not saying anything is going to come of this round of ponderings. Just saying the creative stormfront is on the horizon.

...until then...

peace... RHManiac

It's been a while...


It's been 2+ years since I have posted anything. Honestly, things have been busy and I haven't had much to say that I haven't been saying to friends anyway.

So what's happened over the time? A lot... and not all that much.

Back in September 2008, Heather and I bought Squirl out of his half of the store. He stuck around for a bit helping out (a LOT) until the end of May of 2009. Squirl still comes in and games on a regular basis, but he doesn't really help run the store anymore. In a lot of ways I miss him in that capcity because he's an excellent sounding board and frequently shows wisdom beyond his years. I understand why he left though. His life was getting hectic and our being partners was straining our friendship. In the end, his stepping away from the store was the best choice for all involved.

In Januar of 2009, we moved Amored Gopher Games to a new, larger location. Heather and I were worried about how that was going to go, but it seems our worries were unfounded. Our sales held steady with levels that we had prior to the move, then they slowly increased to about double of what we were making to the move. It's only gone up since then. In the elapsed time, we went after and achieved sanctioning for Friday Night Magic. This event alone has turned Fridays from a $300-$350 day to a $550-$1000 day. Things are looking up, and our family of Gophers (regular customers) continues to grow.

Also, close to a year ago, I quit my day job. Financially, it was the worst thing I could have done, but from a physical standpoint, I had to do it. Working both the store and the Pancake Hut was slowly killing me with exhaustion and stress. Overall, I'm glad I left the Pancake Hut, but I am not proud of HOW I left it. I walked out in mid-shift on a Saturday... yeah, I was that stressed with it all.

Throughout all of it, I've come to realize just how blessed that I am that God above connected me with my wife early on in our lives. Heather has made all of the things going on not only bearable, but enjoyable. She is my inspiration and my godsend, and I don't tell/show her that enough. I adore Heather beyond measure and she is easily the best thing that has entered, or will ever enter, my life. I love you, sweetheart. =)

I'm signing off for now... but there is more to say, and I will say it eventually...

peace... the Red-Haired Maniac a.k.a. GopherDave