Coded green.

Freeday 21 December 2001

Winter light

Pic of the day: Even on the darkest day of the year, there is some light.


As I am writing this, it's only a few hours till I have to get up and take the bus to Kristiansand railway station. My Christmas holiday is about to begin in earnest. I have packed my dark suit and white shirt and a way too colorful silk tie. (Why can't they be black or white too, while we're at it? And am I the only one who sees a connection to the colorful noses of certain male apes?)

I am tempted to believe that my backpack has been shrinking while I didn't look. There used to be room for another pair of trousers and a couple shirts. And I'm sure I used to pack more underwear and socks than I do this year. But there's no way I'll get it all into the backpack this time. After the suit and underwear, there is room for little more than a bag of toiletries. I can forget bringing with me my full assortment of male fragrances, too. I shall have to decide on one for the whole Christmas, and hope that it does not actively displease my hostess. Their noses are so much more sensitive than ours, for some reason.

Anyway, apart from the most essential packing, I haven't exactly prepared myself in any way. On the contrary, I have spent these two days in front of the computer, playing Dark Age of Camelot.


I found, surprisingly, the realm of Albion more to my liking than Midgard. I guess I am simply not barbaric enough at heart. But I met an unexpected problem: The server where I played Albion seemed far less stable. Repeatedly I experienced to go "linkdead", that is to say, the game program on my computer lost the link to the server. Sometimes it just hung and I had to reboot the computer, but often it started to slow down and then the game world acted strange. People moved randomly, and battles halted with the combatants just swaying back and forth. Sometimes it would resolve after a while, but typically this was the beginning of linkdeath.

With a somewhat sad heart I left my Highlander Cleric and started afresh on a new server. This time I made a Breton Fighter with the purpose of advancing to Paladin. This came to pass, too. But eventually the same problems occured, in the same way. Indeed, in the same place. After my character twice was killed in the same place because of linkdeath (unable to defend because the controls stopped responding) I finally figured it out.

The particular place is one of the most popular in the whole realm. People around levels 4-7 congregate in a never ending battle, where the combatants come and go but there is almost always several fights going on. I like it, because my characters play "guardian angels" to other players: Cast protective spells, intercept aggressive monsters that pop up and sneak up on other players. Hey, that's just the kind of guy I am. (Or girl, as my characters still tend to be female. It is easier for both sexes to interpret an action by a female as helpful rather than aggressive. For instance, if a male attacks the monster that is pressing you, you reason that he is trying to steal your experience points. If a female does the same, you assume that she is trying to help you out of a tight spot. Just think it over and see if it isn't so.)

Anyway, the heavy activity in that spot is probably the reason why I go linkdead. My puny connection chokes on the flow of information from the battlefield. After all, it does not only transfer the data concerning my character and my immediate opponents, but all friends and foes within sight. It probably doesn't help that the server is in America and I am in Norway, either.

So now I know how to avoid the problem. I will simply have to not wade into battlefields full of activity. I shall have to look into other ways of making the game fun. Or perhaps not. I won't be playing at all until December 27th late at night, or December 28th. By then the fad may be over, and I may have no clue why I thought it was so fascinating.


My life is filled with things that I have started, then stopped. Some times I restart after a while. Only a few things are "constant", but even they are in a constant state of change. My religion, for instance, and my diary. They change a bit from day to day, even from morning to evening. Sometimes emotional, sometimes rational. I balance like a circus artist walking on a tight rope, not like a statue standing on its pedestal. But balance I do.

Yesterday <-- This month --> Tomorrow?
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Two years ago
Three years ago

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