I have added “Life In The Age Of Byrony” blogged by TAllagash, for no other reason than I like the cut of the fellow’s jib. He doesn’t really talk about game or anything like that; mostly just his experiences as a fighter.
I also like his references, “Byrony” I suppose is Lord Byron, poet and boxer, and 80’s fans will remember the novel “Bright Lights, Big City” by Jay McInerney. Tad Allagash was a debonaire bon vivant, a man about town, and bad influence on the unnamed second person narrator. (In the film Tad Allagash was memorably played by Kiefer Sutherland, an inspired bit of casting; the narrator by Michael J. Fox, who I think brought more pathos to the character and inspired more sympathy than he perhaps deserved.)
Being a nerd kid and encouraged to read lots of books (which helped cost me my good vision, a terrible handicap for certain things) I read lots of books about war and adventure. Because of course boys love this kind of shit. The Marxist view would be it’s done to brainwash recruits for imperialism, but I think it’s strictly commercial. And I wanted to go out and do these things, experience these things.
This leads me to one of Ferdinand Bardimu’s criticisms of nerds, that they refuse to venture outside their comfort zones. I think people in general don’t go outside their comfort zones much, it’s that nerds tend to hae very small comfort zones. Why I have an adventurous streak is a bit of a mystery to me. My parents, or maybe my dad more specifically, were the least adventurous people in the world. They had no hobbies and barely left the house. On the other hand my dad had a friend from work, and that family frequently went hunting, camping, and skiing, which I envied. The stifling restrictions led my brother to pursue a career as a rock musician, with predictably bad results; and my sister into a world of fantasy. Children need stimulation and if you deny it to them they may seek it in unhealthy ways.
My sister attributes his withdrawal to the behavior of his father. My grandfather was 52 when my father was born. My grandfather had spent his life working in loud, dangerous conditions, costing him much of his hearing and a few fingers. My the time my dad came around I guess he was little inclined to do anything but come home, hit the Canadian Club, and flop silently in his chair. My dad did the same thing, but he was not worn out by a life of dangerous manual labor. My dad mostly ignored me, was occasionally nasty when I tried to get his attention, and he never played or talked with me.
I suspect a lot of nerds, or the dysfunctional ones anyway, come from environments like this. A nerd guy might have a nerd kid and share his love of building robots or fixing old computers with him. The kid won’t be cool and will probably get some shit at school but will probably be happy and well-adjusted.
Whether or not you got environmental stimulation as a kid, I believe it’s necessary for happiness.Go out and do crazy things, go out and have adventures. If you’ve led a sheltered life and were discouraged from taking risks, taking a weekend trip someplace might be a crazy adventure. You might feel self-conscious about doing stuff alone; I know I am a lot of the time. Think of things you have always wanted to do and do them. Ever thought about going skydiving? There is probably a drop zone not too far away. Never shot a gun? Go to a shooting range and ask for a lesson. It’s the same with anything else. Try things, and you may not like them, and you may never be inclined to do them again, but you’ll add to your base of experience in life.