Thursday, October 4, 2012


Alrighty! Before I get to the topic at hand today, I wanted to give the correct answer to the riddle I posed in the last blog. Kristen McD got the exact right answer: all stories are true, but I am the loser who talked to imaginary people until she was 15 and thought an albino alligator was trying to eat her soul. One of my roommates from college was the unfortunate sushi barfer (in her defense, she was sick and we were the total jerkfaces peer-pressuring her into another glass of sake). (Pretend) cookies to those who got the correct answer and bless those of you who thought I couldn't possibly be dorky enough to carry around a notebook with the details of my imaginary families in it. Sadly, I'd probably still be doing it if the Sims hadn't been invented.

Today I want to talk about obsession. No, not the unfortunately-named perfume (anyone who actually wants to inspire obsession with a scent has never had their hair sniffed by a consumptive-sounding stranger on a bus). I'm talking about something some might call hobbyism...if your hobby was a lizard that suddenly grew 50 feet over night and started breathing fire, that is.

My family all seem rather prone to this disease of hobbies. My dad converted half of our garage into a fish nursery where he bred guppies for awhile (raised by a man who bred guppies as a hobby, married to a man who breeds beetles for a living, paging Dr. Freud). He also belonged to a model trains group and right before I left for college he was on a bird kick during which, as far as I could tell, he just bought disgusting looking lumps of suet covered in birdseed and left them out to see what they attracted (I'm pretty sure possums weren't on his bird sighting wish list...). He's not the only hobbyist in my family, though. I have gone entire weeks at my parents' house without seeing my middle sister for more than a few minutes here and there because she was up in her room the whole time playing World of Warcraft for 16 hours straight, coming downstairs only to grab another Pepsi and frozen burrito. My youngest sister trumped us all by purchasing a set of dolls that she sewed clothes for, made houses for and carried around with her everywhere. They had to sit at the table with us at restaurants and they were involved in scandalous relationships with her best friend's dolls. She was roughly 14 or 15 at the time...see I'm not the only dork in my family (sorry Adrienne, you are now entitled to tell one embarrassing story about me to anyone who will listen. Next time I have a job interview, I'll give you the hiring manager's number and you can tell them about the time I...well I'll leave the details up to you)!

My obsessions all tend to revolve around stories - either making them, reading them, or watching them. This is the reason I enjoy the Sims so much: all you're doing when you play the Sims is creating characters and then living out their life stories. It's like writing but without the alcoholism and despair. In fact, I know a hobby has reached obsession level when I find myself making Sims based on characters in a book, TV series or movie I am currently enjoying. I have, in the past, made Sims based on characters from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Passions, Battlestar Galactica, The Hunger Games, Lord of the Rings, Gilmore Girls, Pride and Prejudice, The Office, and Firefly. The Sims I am currently playing with (when I get a spare moment which is rare) are based on characters from George R.R. Martin's A Song of Ice and Fire series (AKA the books "Game of Thrones" is based on).

I'm not quite sure why I'm so obsessed with this series. I spend hours pulling it to pieces with Dylan. I critique Martin's unrealistic female characters (they all seem to be hyper-aware of the position of their breasts at any given time), his meandering plot lines, his obvious borrowing from other works in the fantasy genre and yet I just cannot put it down! The obsession began with the TV series. It's a bloody and confusing show so I'm not exactly sure why I was hooked after the first episode...

...might have something to do with this guy...

That's right, baby, work that leather tunicky thing

...or the fact that one of the main characters is a petite but kickass female with a fiery and fierce possessiveness over her "children" (AKA Daenerys and her dragons). It might just have come along at a time when I was desperate for a new story to follow having been somewhat at loose ends since I finished The Hunger Games. Regardless of the reason, it's safe to say I'm completely obsessed. In my defense Dylan is, too. I refused to leave Ry's bedside at the hospital and he accused me of Catelyn Stark-ing it...which is a reference you'll only get if you're a total dork like on...

I have recently decided, however, that my obsession must end before 9 p.m. Every night this week, I've gone to bed and dreamt I was fighting in some battle and getting my arm chopped off or someone was stabbing my children in front of me. Last night I had a night terror in which I actually saw an armored knight standing over my bed about to swing a sword down upon me. Perhaps one so afflicted with nightmares and night terrors as myself should find a kinder, gentler series to obsess about...and maybe I'll soon take up some such milk-toast-y series written for women in the age when men were very concerned about our uteruses becoming excited and addling our brains...

...but I gotta finish this one first...

...and there's one more after this...and then two more promised as long as George R.R. Martin can stave off the ol' heart disease...


  1. I am 300 pages from finishing Dance With Dragons. I felt like we were wandering in circles getting nowhere for a long while - but stuff just got REAL.

    1. I've been wandering in circles for like 9 months now (And I've read like 4 other books in the process...) I just can't seem to get into the last book. It's making me really frustrated!

  2. Your picture confused me but do you want to know the part that I noticed first? There is no way your kitchen is on your right (unless you did some massive remodel)and that is pretty impossible if you're sitting by the pretty red wall. Then I noticed the text was backwards on the book. :-/

    It has been a long week.

    That series sounds pretty interesting. I might have to check it out!

  3. You seem pretty normal to me, so you put on a good front!

  4. I finally finished Dance with Dragons and OMG I can't wait until the next one! I'm so frustrated with needing to wait over a year to find out what happens next. Just so you know, I also have an unhealthy obsession with Jon Snow/the series!

  5. I played the Sims when it first came out- so totally addicting! Then they started adding all the expansion packs and it got to be a bit much. I always loved designing their houses. Okay, now I want to go play...