November 6th, 2005



Dairyland, Dairyland, oh Dairy Dairyland, Dairyland, Dairyland, oh Dairy Dairyland (to be sung to the opening bars of "Lolipop Girl").

So Dairyland* came and went and I loved it. We clocked in at 25 hours, a very respectable run. The freshmen team beat us by five minutes; apparently they were planning ot call it at 24:30 but when we called at 25/23 (they started two hours late) they decided to push for the extra half hour. I suppose I could be bitter but I'm not. We had an excellent game that had a respectable time, a good plot, and a lot of fun. Plus it's always happy for the underdog.

A lot of people have been bitching about the freshmen so I'd like to say this: Dairyland is a game people. We do it rules light these days because fun is more important than any of the other shit associated with it. If it makes you happy you can consider my group the real winners. Heck, you can even buy as all cows, but the freshmen were a good group and I respect them even if (as I told Stephen) they're a bunch of pansies who started late and abused the clock. Why back in my day (sophomore year) when a player couldn't start on time the rest of the group began at game start and that player jumped in later. Now get off my lawn!

For the record, because I've heard a lot of confusion on the matter, the record is 36 hours established by Sandy Roberts' team in 1999 (note: that was a freshmen group). The record among current Beloit students is 33 hours established by my team in 2002 (team members: adsartha, leadacid, darkskywatcher, feodoric, abmann, and Kyle). Barring a new record this Spring, the current BSFFA record after Spring graduation will be a tie of ~25 between this year's teams and Genghis's Team Wife Beater.

I'd like to thank my amazing team members: feodoric, darkskywatcher, Ann, Bryce, jinxmurphy, and not_a_girl, as well as the amazing support we got from phoenix_snake, Alex++, and zariel7.

The game was loads of fun. Plot went well, I was able to improvise exactly as I was afraid I wouldn't be able to, and things just came together. That said there were some problems. I put in too much plot for jinxmurphy and not_a_girl. The other players, I think, would not only have been more awake and alert but have had more fun if I'd written in more stuff for their characters. I must remember in the future that game writing is not the same as writing a story: you have multiple protagonists all of whom need attention from the author.

This will be my last Dairyland. While I still love gaming I don't think I love it enough to do it for over twenty-four hours any more. I'm glad I could go out with such an amazing group of friends, players and support both, and a game that I enjoyed so much. Thank you all of you.

Some advice, adopted from the Tao Te Ching, for future groups:

Whoever games for fun shall find it.
Whoever games for fun and to beat others divides their efforts in half.
Whoever games for fun, to win, to beat others, and to win divides their efforts in thirds.
Whoever games for fun, to win, to beat others, to win, and to set a record divides their efforts in quarters.
Seek not to game best, seek to enjoy the game.

After Dairyland, despite not having slept in twenty-nine hours, it was of course time to party, so Ann and I went to the polka lesson. We stayed for an hour, I walked Ann home, then on the way back to the dance (of course I went back to the dance) I ran into a - not even a friend, just an acquaintance, a dance partner really, having a bad night. I spent my last dollar getting her some tea and just sat and talked with her for an hour. I think it helped. I hope it did.

Then it was back to the dance. Two and a half hours of ballroom on low sleep = best or worst idea in the world. Probably the worst but it was fun. I greatly apologize to all the girls whose feat I stepped on or who I accidentally wacked during some of those dances. At least I finally got to dance with Jill. I'm happy she doesn't hate me.

After the dance I decided it was time for - no, not sleep - more dancing so zariel7 and I went to the TKE party. I quickly lost Zariel but danced a bit with Claire and Becky. A lot with Becky, actually. It was a good party and we'll see.

By this point I was crashing hard. I came back to BSFFA, hung out with Alex++ and Jill for awhile, then went to bed. Alex++, Jill, and Joe tucked me in. It was sweet of them. I love my friends.

*For non-BSFFA members: Dairyland is the Beloit Science Fiction and Fantasy Association role-playing endurance contest. Teams begin gaming Friday night at a specified time and keep going until only one team remains.

Edit: I realized that I never said what we were playing. It was World War II Mage fighting demon-summoning, space Nazi Nephandi. To quote our orange juice, "Lots of pulp!"