Fanfest 2011 – Day 5

It’s not often I come across anyone that genuinely makes me take a step back to evaluate my chances at surviving a personal and direct encounter them. Then I met Petur.

Standing at nearly seven feet tall, and roughly four feet broad at the shoulders, he was a behemoth of a man, leaving me feeling like a small child by comparison.

As I reached out my hand to shake his, I was ready to fight dirty should things go wrong quickly. I don’t know if the close-cropped mohawk he sported, or the nicely braided and jewelled beard, or the intensity of his piercing blue eyes, but he was an intimidating figure.

As he clasped my hand, nearly crushing it in his, I was ready; then he smiled a warm, gentle smile and told me he was a huge fan of mine, and was truly happy to meet me.

Petur was a gentle giant, and was the true highlight of my day.

I didn’t place in the CSM elections, not even as an alternate, and that was ok; given the composition of that year’s council, I think fate had spared me a horrific experience. It made me snicker and laugh at Seleene.

Being the final night of the convention, there was a massive party with over 4200 people crammed into a space that could accommodate 2500 if they were lucky. To say it was overcrowded was an understatement, but it wasn’t really a bad thing. As was customary, most capsuleers preferred the isolation and warmth of their pods, tending to shy away from real interaction with the fairer gender. This left a ratio of about 5 hot Gallente women for each 1 Capsuleer who did attend.

My neck wasn’t the only sore by the end of that night.

The next day, I would be heading out via commercial flight back to Dal.

Fanfest 2011 – Day 4

It was becoming increasingly difficult to recall the details of that particular trip; I suspected the amount of alcohol I was consuming was the primary contributing factor.

Day 4?

I remember several young, scantily clad Gallente women serenading me while I sat in a hot tub. It’s a good memory.

I remember that I somehow made it back to the quarters I was staying at.

I honestly don’t remember much else.

Fanfest 2011 – Day 1

I’d been in small ships before, hell, a Rifter was my favourite to fly. But damned if this shuttle wasn’t the smallest ship I’d ever been in. I’m broad shouldered but not particularly tall; even still I couldn’t stand up straight on board the shuttle. It was very claustrophobic. I was accustomed to being attached to the ship, being a part of the ship, feeling every nuance the ship felt. Being so disconnected left me feeling nauseous and disoriented. I was a horrible passenger.

Seriously? I thought to myself as the pilot announced yet again that we would remain docked as the first stop in our journey, Amamake, was experiencing unusual levels of hostilities and was not deemed currently safe for civilians to fly into. Amamake was such a shit hole.

I took a small pill to ease my stomach; I’m sure the publicity of a capsuleer puking aboard a civilian shuttle due to motion sickness wasn’t something my career needed.

Two and a half hours later we were cleared to undock. I was worried I would miss my connecting flight. I had said before, and I was thinking it again, I should just fly myself there next time. It wasn’t often that so many capsuleers gathered in one place, and Concord was always leery of potential hostilities, hence why we all arrived on commercial flights. It was humbling, embarassing, and as I reached my hand to my mouth, unsettling.

I had at least hoped for an in flight movie to distract myself. No such luck. I moved around uncomfortably, my ass completely numb from the seat; I was really yearning for the warm embrace of my pod. Ah well.

I waved my arms above my head as we rocketed out of the station, screaming at the top of my lungs like on a roller coaster at a theme park. The other passengers didn’t appreciate that at all, but I thought it was funny as hell.

My ears popped as the cabin adjusted pressure. I had to ask for gum from the woman beside me. I really didn’t know how regular people endured this. It was so barbaic.

Paid 4 ISK for a small bag of dried fruit I thought was complimentary. The contents looked to be worth signficantly less, but I didn’t want to be embarassed in front of complete strangers. That’s how they got you methinks.

Met a pretty lady to travel with. Got annoyed once we had arrived at the 20 minute bathroom break she took. She was quick to explain it to me:

“We don’t get to just walk in, whip it out, do our business, and walk out you know!” she began with passionate irritation. I quickly realized my tactical error and tuned her out, all the while nodding and smiling.

“We have to go in, find the appropriate stall, you know, if there’s someone in one, you have to leave a gap of one stall if possible, depending on cleanliness; then you need to clean the seat, put down a seat liner, squat over it, do your business. From there we actually wash our hands, or change our panty liner if needed. It’s not easy being a woman!”

It’s not easy being a man listening to a woman. I smiled.

“I’m sorry it took me twenty minutes. I hurried so that I wouldn’t upset you, but you’re upset anyway, and somehow that’s my fault because it takes me longer to pee. Well, forgive me for being a woman!” she spewed sarcastically.

“You’re forgiven.” I said dryly, not playing into the self-pity. “Let’s go.”

As we stood at the customs security line, I had to laugh. The aging security personnel that gathered the containers for belongings was in full on rant mode: “3 – 4 at a time please. No need for one at a time or we’ll be here all day. C’mon folks, hurry it up!” I watched the woman I was with quickly succumb to the pressure, taking off her belt, shoes, jewellery, backpack, etc, and put them on the conveyor for security examination. I casually removed my belt and boots, leaving my ring, glasses and dogtags on. The metal detector didn’t make a sound. I sometimes wondered if the equipment actually worked or if it was all just to instill a sense of safety and process for the herd.

After I had made it through, the alarm on the system went off, not once, but twice. I guess it worked after all. I turned around to see what had triggered the alarm, and shook my head to myself upon realizing it was travelling companion.

She explained later that by feeling so hurried she had forgetten to remove her NeoCom and her water bottle, both prohibited items on flights, which she knew, and that if they were simply more efficient at their jobs instead of bullying innocent people, then things wouldn’t end up taking so long in the first place.

I nodded and smiled, though I did have words with one of the security personnel during the incident. They were all the same. “She’s with me.” I said, assuming that my rank would be evident to anyone with authority. He cast me a sharp glance and spoke, “I’m talking with her. When I’m done addressing her, I’ll address you. Understood?”

“Jack ass.” I replied, not quite under my breath, but not quite at normal volume.

“What did you say?” he replied. A part of me wanted to retort with sarcasm, to repeat my initial statement mour clearly, simply for the lesson in principle that would be taught. Unfortunately, I knew it would come at my own expense, and I was already delayed for my connecting flight.

“Just checking.” I replied sheepishly, much to the delight of the security officer.

Once things were sorted we quickly hurried to our connecting flight.

Just as passengers began boarding, my name was called on the loud speaker, so I went to the service desk to see what the trouble was. “We accidentally booked you into another passenger’s seat. Would you be ok with us switching your seat sir?”

“Yeah, whatever. So long as I get there, right?”

“Very good, sir. Thank you.”

Let me give you a life lesson on commercial flying, boys and girls. When an attendant asks you if you’d like to change your seat, and your seat is moderately decent to begin with, just say no. Seriously, it’s their problem, not yours; don’t worry about being the nice person in the situation.

I slowly made my way to the very last row of seats at the back of the plane, you know, the row directly in front of the shitter. From there, I squeezed my way to the window seat, trapped beside a fatter, taller man, who for some reason thought his elbows owned both arm rests and about six inches passed each.

I spent the next 5 hours hunched over, trying to fit in the seat, my shoulder too wide to comply, my rib cage protesting being constantly elbowed by the sleeping blob, all the while trying not to vomit every time a passenger needed to use the lavatory.

In short … worst flight ever.

I had no trouble checking into my accommodations and welcomed a quick nap.

OOC: Iceland, I am in you.

CCP/Roc’s Christmas Contest

Tis the season to be jolly … fa la la la, la la la la. Don we now our …. well, you know the rest.

It’s that time of year again, pilots, when we become more selfish and greedy than usual, all in the name of a festive spirit. Ah, the joy that is Christmas!

So the powers that be at CCP and myself got to thinking, “What is something that every Jovian fearing pod pilot would want for Christmas?” We wracked and wracked our brains over egg nog, rum, and Christmas cookies, until finally we realized the answer!!!

THE CONTEST:

I want you to tell the universe why you deserve to get into Fanfest for free. In a video. Publicly.

THE PRIZE:

Well, if it’s not evident yet, the prize is a FREE ticket into Fanfest (prize does not include airfare, accommodation, meals, gallente dancers or anything other than the ability to walk in the door at Fanfest for free).***

You will also receive a FREE pass to “Pub Crawl with the Devs”, a lavish tradition of Fanfest that will be all the better with you a part of it.

Finally, you will receive a $50 iTunes gift card (or Amazon if you’re an Apple hater) from me personally. Who knows? You may even use it to buy my three EVE Online related CDs: Bio, One Night of Roc, and Mendre!

Additionally, but not guaranteed, it is my hope that in the fine tradition of Roc ‘s Ramblings contests, my readers and the EVE community will donate prizes throughout the month for our winner.

*** If the winner is unable to attend Fanfest they will receive a $100 US Gift Card at the EVE Online store as their prize.

THE RULES:

  1. The CCP/Roc Christmas Contest will begin Dec 1, 2010, 9 AM EST and will finish Dec 31, 2010, 9 PM EST.
  2. All entries must be accompanied by the full real name of the contestant as well as their physical address, email address and phone number. Email roc@rocwieler.com for privacy reasons.
  3. Former and present employees of CCP or affiliates including contractors may not enter.
  4. Applicants may submit no more than one entry. If an entry needs to be updated only the most recent submission will be judged.
  5. Judging will be based on humour, creativity, effort and relevance to the contest. Entries that are obscene or against the spirit of the competition will be disqualified.
  6. Entries must be uploaded to a publicly accessible site for download like Rapidshare or EVE Files. Feel free to share your entry on YouTube but please provide access to a downloadable version.
  7. All entries become the property of CCP and may be used for promotional purposes.
  8. Submission of an entry for this contest constitutes acceptance of these rules and conditions.
  9. CCP reserves the right to change the final prize terms.
  10. The judge’s and CCP’s decision is final.

THE WINNER:

The winner will be announced in this spot on Jan 31st, 2011, at 9 PM after I’ve had a chance to thoroughly review all entries.

Tyrannis: Forgotten Gods

– by 343guilty1

I can still remember the day that the skies changed from the greenish blues that I had seen as a child. The smells of the great war machines reigning down from the skies, spewing their polluting chemicals across our green fields. I remember the men and women that marched into our towns, and took what they pleased. I remember…

It was deep in autumn when word came in, Concord was lifting the age old ban of Planetary Industry. At first no one knew what this meant, what this would bring… Many of the elders did not believe the holoreels, because it was just not how things were done, but we the youth knew that the new paradigm of universal management was serious.

Of course no one consulted the inhabitants of the planets, for they knew not one citizen of a planet aside from major market tycoons who had something to gain would want any part of these operations. Some of the slums would poke their head out for work, knowing full well that it would be a shit job, but hopefully bring in some isk to feed their families, but unfortunately for those living in the edges ofthe empire out in the regions we knew as Void space, (or as the capsuleers called it null sec) this was not an option.

All to often in the coming months would we hear tales of entire worlds being taken over by an agressive sky alliance driving their war machine, that they would drive to enslave all the peoples of their homeworld. There would be resistence, but it would be futile. With the supierior technology and tactics the Sky Devils as they would become known as a general term amongst the locals would no doubt prevail without any hassle. For us lucky ones, in empire space, there would still be regulations. Just as restrictions had been placed upon the mobile stations that the sky devils could setup, there too would be such implications on this “Planetary Interaction” that the leaders had dubbed it, but to little avail.

With so many planets and so few Concord, they would rarely be enforced.

They came with armed escorts, hundreds of ships with thousands more workers descended upon our planet, and within days their factorys up. Not long after posters starting appearing in the towns, propaganda bullshit trying to persuade our people to work for their cause for little money. I, of course, resenting every part of the ordeal strayed from the pubs I once used to sit at nightly, and other places which I cherished for shame of my fellow Horpkins. Too many had I seen fall into conformity following the “Final Decline” of our ways. I could not stand my friends who I had once thought patriots. Men who had fought in wars against neighboring principalities, against foreign tyrannies, against any foe that our goverment had deemed a threat, now lost all significance, not because they didn’t not love our country, but because they did not love our planet.

They did not see that if no fuel for these machinations was provided that they would shut down and leave us be, and move on to another population, but they gave in.

Soon I found others who shared my views, and we spent many a night discussing our divine hatred for the Sky Devils. Over the course of a year, we picked up more believers in our cause. We had formed a plan.

The day was set, and we were ready. What would go down in history as a rebellion would one day be rewrote as a revolution, by us, because history is written by the victors, but for now we were just getting started. Out of our entire town, we had amassed 514 fellow believers. We would strike the factory that had overtaken our town and bring the bull to a halt. We had stolen weapons and ammunition from various sources and many already had their own caches. The guards had grown lazy and carefree under OUR radiant sun. The martinets of the factories had left to go start other mining facilities. The time was right. We carried out or operations flawlessly, and though we took minor losses we had sent our message, that this evil industrial empire would not be tolerated, not here not ever.

After seeing what had become of the Sky Devils, others took up the cause, and soon word spread across the land of those who had retaliated. The alliances would cover this up with stories of counter-attacks, but the true meaning was seen. It only took a few sympathetic capsuleers who will be remembered as the Forgotten Gods, as the ones who liberated other planets, by telling the stories of the planets and giving hope to those who were oppressed.

It started with 514, and now spans to tens of thousands of patriots who believe in the cause.