There's no actual spaghetti sorry4.48 / 5.00 20,822 Views
HONK HONK4.30 / 5.00 13,383 Views
Yotam celebrates his 22nd birthday WITH A SONG.4.25 / 5.00 17,684 Views
Ask me anything, if you really want to know.
Discovery, is the ultimate high, and that's a big part of any good story.
April 1st: Get invited. Really?
April 16th: Brother and Sister arrive to 'liquidate' the family farm, on 2 days notice. They freak, and start wasting money and scrapping real antiques in the mad rush. As the youngest kid (40 y/o), my boots-on-the-ground advice is dismissed.
April 22nd: Inadvertently infected a bad tooth by over brushing my teeth. Not realizing it, I let the infection get out of hand, to the point where I couldn't sleep for more than 2 hours at a time.
April 25th: Sister told me I could not use the truck to go to Pico Day, which was well North of Philly, and perfectly safe to commute to on a Saturday.
April 27th: After my sister missed the turn to the train station, I barely made it onto the Keystone Express to Philly. If I had more than 2 hours of sleep, I would've gotten more familiar with the guest list... and route to the station(s). I managed to find locals and SEPTA employees, to properly direct me to the proper trains... websites can be so imprecise :\ "Glenside! Glenside next stop." It was gorgeous out, and Glenside was not unlike Princeton or any other American, upper-middle class town.
After I grudgingly accepted that the sun was indeed east of me, I turned around on Glenside Avenue and headed West, looking at street signs, on a stunningly bright comfortable day. "Harrison, yeah... Lismore, yes!!", then I saw the Google Street View image of NG HQ. I relaxed even more, crossed over and lurked the facade, enjoying my smoke. This was the place I was promised.
I saw a man with his back turned to me, sitting on a red couch, in a small garage. I ceased worrying and thinking, to listen to the modestly volumed music... sure as shit sounded like something I heard in the Audio Portal alright. Noddingly, I turned around, pitched my smoke into a storm drain, and tried the front door. The address for Newgrounds was locked. Through the glass door, I saw a pebble covered square room, with a split staircase going up.
I tried the next door down, which was in the same building, but under a different number. Also locked, but on the other side, I saw fresh stocks of toilet paper, printing paper and other assorted supplies.. not the hallmark of an abandoned building. I put my knapsack and satchel of gifts on an empty table.
There were more people in the largest room, to the right of the mini-garage. I smiled and nodded my way past the couch guy, and a few others on my way into the party theater. There were a string of unlit yellow construction lamps hung from the ceilings perimeter, the long line of shades on the right were closed, and looked like they always were. The second floor was supported by some impressively close steel beams. Once I made out who Tom was, the atmosphere mellowed, this was the guy who sent for me.
"Happy birthday Tom, thanks for inviting me." He squinted at my dimly lit, self-made name badge, which I made the night before, in the last 5 minutes before the libraries computers (and printers) would be shut down for the night. Luckily, my bee-keeping librarian friend was able to navigate the slip-shot networking just in time. 50 cents a page for color, 10 cents for b/w.... I handed over my tribute to the Mystery Boxes, and set aside my other presents.
After Tom introduced me to the artist I passed on the couch (Sherbalex), he invited us up to the office level. We took the stairs nearest to the make-shift apartment and garage. Tom lovingly toted over a Tank award prototype, to the older craftsman at work. The pleasant fellow remembered my name 10 hours later, right before I took off for the last train out.
Tom crossed his arms, "So, what do you think of the Under Judgement pod, under the Top 5? Do you use it, look at it?"
I was kinda ambivalent about it, since I usually go to right to the classic Portal, to nail down the UJ stuff... "Does that start at the bottom of the list, the entries almost out of Judgement?" It does, sorta. That pod lists the oldest entries still Under Judgement, the one that need voting on the most.
This was the moment. I had so much input to give, questions to ask, and statements to be made... which I did as tastefully and promptly as possible. Would've been the perfect time to get a picture of me alongside "The Creator".
Once we took the other set of stairs back down to the party room, I opened Tom's birthday present before of him: a bag of Toll-House chocolate chip cookies, made the night before. They had been slightly over-cooked and gummy, the worst batch in a damn long time :| Tom looked down into the bag, much like someone would look at a small pet or child, urinating between his legs. I apologetically closed the bag up and put it on the side table, near the coffee.... he couldn't think I was trying to poison him, could he? I never got banned, or took offense at any admin before :P
While there, I met many an amazing people. Tystarr, JakBaronKing, Emily-Youcis, Sherbalex, Louis (who tried to give me a hug, with my stupid ball-cap on), Stamper, Tim, Wade, Evark... and many, many more. I was especially impressed with the young game developers, barely out of their clouts. How could I not stare at these makers-of-games? I played Pong, Dragon's Lair, Pac-Man, all when they came out.
I was especially taken by Tim, the all-in-one-tool of Newgrounds. Someone who can cook frozen burgers, admin the web-stream on Chat, and attend to other matters, all in the course of an evening, says a lot. It says love. Love motivates exceptional action.
Krinkels was also a shockingly impressive fellow. The guy who invented (his words, not mine) grey murder dolls, seemed a self-made man of incredible depth. It's not often you meet a man who has such a pair of rocks at the center of his being. This man had rules in his life, a staunch perception of center, that few people exhibit.... Aspirational.
Emily was another extremely special individual, of the sort I previously described. Though she may speak in ghetto-anecdotal tones, her mind is exceptionally brilliant and sharp, poetic in the most sublime. I would give 10 years of my life, to experience her version of clarity. She's quite short and sexy too :3 To me, the sexiest thing on a woman, is her mind.
Mike I recognized from my research (thanks Luis!!), and was just as brilliant as I expected. I asked about Swivel and smiled my butt off. Codec algorithms. Man I woulda asked him about that, but my mind was double-digit hours spent O__O. I've run into enough techs (with the certs under their belts) to know when I've met a genius. Mike seemed the sort who could dirt bike like a hillbilly one minute, and solve a exception error the next.
Luis Castanon is a mystery unto himself. He is an artist of emotion, and a traveler of societies great and small. Social, but aloof. Friendly, but distant. The journey defines this man, the destination, an oyster to consume. I haven't met many traveling men... most were hustlers, convicts. Luis is a jet-setter in the old, 20th century vein: urbane, poised, seasoned. Underneath it all, lies the child adventurer, who looks towards the next horizon.
Tom Fulp seems a very centered person, but so affable, you might overlook his strong gift of.... just listening. George Washington's secret was, what he didn't understand, he learned. Tom's still got a bit to learn, but his accomplishments since the 2007 peak of NG, have been epic. He is the pinnacle of "indie", the height of integrity and a fellow I'm very, very proud of... even if he is younger than me... Actually, almost all the ppl there were younger than me :\
While trying to get some face time at the Chat terminal, I backed up into a woman roughly my own, short height. I apologized, saying 'we short folk must look out for one another' (or some such). Not long after I made my way home, I found out who this exceptional artist was!
I was kinda disappoint at the fact that many Chatters comments were ignored while this Pico Day thing was going on. The webcam shoulda been another 2 feet back :|
I never caught the guy's real name, but Tystarr was the light of the party. I;m pissed I didn't meet the likes of Timmy, the dude behind 'Stealing the Diamond', or the guy who makes beacon a meal and art to cry for. But the brief company of Rig, MindChamber and Stamper, will live in my memories for the rest of my life.
Stamper was an especially warm, and playful person. He's the one person, I'd would've liked to have known better, and I forgive you for scaring the fudge out of me, while on the roof of NG HQ, begging for a lighter in the darkness :| Did Sabsy share any of those flat, sticky cookies with you, or were they re-gifted? Coffee makes any fat n' sugar go down a treat :)
I messed up RicePirate's real name upon first meeting, but the guy is every bit the man I thought he was, and more. It takes a special sort, to embrace the wilderness (he came from NYC, I believe) for the less traveled portions of the world, when his actual career, meant going back to the urban environs of his youth. He knows what's hot and works diligently at it. He also knows what his talents and time are worth, and that's certainly a respectable quality.
A contingent of Canadians came, well after the second round of meat servings were made available. There were a lot of fashionably late attendees... which did me no good, considering the depleted state I was in.
I had 3 full cups of "Booty Juice" and a glass-kept beer or two. I cringed when tHiS got played O__O Thank Gob Tom was checking on Tim's shredded pork... last years Pico Day stream was definitely a PG-13 matter. I fucking applauded the shit of Emily's music video!!1 You get over a certain age, real art is evident :)
Although I glared at my watch for the last trains departure, the dark hours were magical with surreal communion. I had packed a light jacket, but it was unnecessary... I had even thought, a young woman would be in need of such a thing. Vidgamedude was an especially active participant in the days festivities, and suggested, he might crash at Stampers, despite the fact Stamper was thoroughly fagged out, at home, allegedly passed out.
The last train out of Glenside was less than 10 minutes away. Amazingly, Tom was still around and conversing. I said all my goodbyes, and bolted back the way I came :\ Being without a vehicle and in a strange urban environment, compelled me to run, when I should've stayed and been myself.
Luckily, 3 Newgrounders of undeniable descendantcy, guided me to the hotel I had reserved by debit-card, few days before. Had it not been for these fellows, I would've taken a different, incorrect path to the place of refuge, in a strange but civil, joyous city. On the train out, I asked them if they had gotten any of the first run of NG stickers... I had two to give them, and I did, out of love and envy for their relationship. And the journey.
We had a very pleasant trek to the Best Western. Being the unattached elder, I would've happily laid down my life to protect these kids. My 9 LED bulbed flashlight turned out to be handy, as the girl in our foursome had no shoes :o It was still an urban, rubbish strewn landscape, despite the municipal upkeep. I did everything in my power to make the conversation wistful and joyous. Regardless of their guidance, the journey with them, was as if we were righteous, holy pilgrims on the homeward bound, basking in what was. Their names are a mystery to me now (I'm such a turd for names), but I revered them as comrades of the highest caliber. Thank you all.
"As long as the card goes through, I don't care about much else." I have instinctively learned to ask questions (or perform actions) that reveal intent. It's my way of coping with undiagnosed Asperger's Syndrome :p The room had several burn marks and several sprinkler heads. Luckily, the double occupancy, smoking optional room, was the same price as a single non-smoking room (about 100$). I had hoped to shelter someone... even a single female attendee, maybe? The shower was great, but the full bodied cigars from a certain bearded individual, as well as a few unwrapped stogies from Luis, stayed in my damaged sinuses till early Monday morning :)
I set the alarm clock's time, but not it's ringing function... perhaps a subconscious action to gain restorative sleep. Had to get up several times, to swab my tooth infection with q-tips doused with rubbing alcohol, simply to numb the pain. Under normal circumstances, it would've killed the infection within hours, but I had let it go too far and too deep :\ The previous weeks unsettling chaos and meddling, had ruined me utterly.
After turning in my room card, I asked for the number of a cab company they deal with (everyone likes kickbacks, don't they?). While waiting outside, I ran into Vidgamedude, who had his own odyssey to the hotel last night. I was one stop late, for getting to last train out of Pennsylvania, thanks to my oversleeping by half an hour.... The cab driver was an old wizened sort, and I did my best to match his conversation, despite my dry and tired throat. Older folk were meant to be courted and learned from. But most of his speeches were of his professional, livery life.
My previous adventure at the 30th Street Station, prepared me for the acquisition of the proper train birth. The man ahead me confirmed my departure route, "I'm going on a two week vacation to 'The City'". His virtual steam-trunk would be ample storage for his stay in New York City.
After finding a seat and stowing my lightened gear, I noticed another young threesome sitting across from me. It got my mind to thinking. How could I express the love I have for Newgrounds, in one sentence, to a bunch of young strangers, ogling their smartphones and trading gossip? If I had a business card of the websites address, my explanation would be simplified to the point of a sure sale.
For that moment, the joy of Newgrounds was all my own to relish.
Despite all the shortcomings, my attendance was a red-letter date in my so-called life. Over 12 years of membership, and I finally met the man (men) behind the curtain :) How often can you say something like that?
Oh, and I got really drunk while writing all the 'character descriptions'... just thought you'd like to know.
June 16th, 2013 - Check out this sweet gif I got for Father's Day! Not really a dad IRL, but I'm proud to be one here lol!
Total Medals Earned: 2,721 (From 287 different games.)