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Areala Asks: Ask Me Anything (20160429)


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In light of Phillyman and E-Day promoting me to the rank of administrator, I thought I could do something different for this week's "Areala Asks" thread. Thus, instead of me asking all of you a question, I'm opening up the floor for you to ask ME stuff you'd like to know. Now, I'm not going to give out things like my phone number or anything like that, but if you're curious about who I am, what I like and dislike, my hobbies, opinions, life outside of Retromags or anything else, feel free to pose a question. Let's see what happens. :)

Who knows, if it gets popular enough, maybe we'll make E-Day the subject of the next Retromags 'Ask Me Anything', and now that I'm an admin, he'll have to listen. ;)

We'll keep the topic open for one week as normal, so you have through 11pm EST on Friday, May 6th to pose a question. Have fun!! :)

*huggles*
Areala

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When you do don't have access to the Internet, say, if your ISP has an outage, or even if your computer or other devices are powered off, does it feel to you as if your perception of the world has decreased significantly? Like some sort of invisible pathway is closed off?

I don't mean this metaphorically, but when my system is off for swapping disk drives or cleaning the heat sinks, it feels like my mental window to the world has the shutters closed. Very hard to explain in a concise manner. Just a question I ask of people who know what it was like before everybody had a computer, much less internet access.

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When you do don't have access to the Internet, say, if your ISP has an outage, or even if your computer or other devices are powered off, does it feel to you as if your perception of the world has decreased significantly? Like some sort of invisible pathway is closed off?

Remember back in the day when you used to wonder about something and couldn't instantly look up the answer? How did we ever live with all that mystery in our lives?

It really is amazing how dependent we've become upon something we used to do fine without. Hell, even if my computer is just temporarily offline for a matter of minutes (rebooting, for example), it's natural for me to reach for my phone to continue browsing/checking email/whatever.

I don't know if I should be proud or ashamed of how far we've come.

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When you do don't have access to the Internet, say, if your ISP has an outage, or even if your computer or other devices are powered off, does it feel to you as if your perception of the world has decreased significantly? Like some sort of invisible pathway is closed off?

I don't mean this metaphorically, but when my system is off for swapping disk drives or cleaning the heat sinks, it feels like my mental window to the world has the shutters closed. Very hard to explain in a concise manner. Just a question I ask of people who know what it was like before everybody had a computer, much less internet access.

Believe it or not, when I lose internet access, after complaining about it for a while, I feel the exact opposite. I feel free to go and do all the stuff I'm always meaning to do but don't because I planted my butt in front of the computer. Usually that means reading for an extended period of time, or make several hours' progress in whatever video game I'm playing at the time. But mostly it just reminds me of being a kid, back before the Internet was a thing people could access outside of a university setting. I feel young again. I don't mind that at all. :)

*huggles*

Areala

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1. Are you a natural redhead. ( I don't know why I picture you as having red hair but I do.)

2. Do you have a college degree, if so what and from where.

3. What do you do for a living.

4. What originally bought you to Retromags,

5. Star Trek or Star Wars

6. Have you ever done cosplay, if so as what.

7. Place you would live if you could pack up and move.

8. Favorite arcade game or games.

9. If you could write for a gaming website, which one.

10. What is the warrior nun reference? (Or are you an actual nun... Who's a warrior)

Edited by Sean697
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10. What is the warrior nun reference? (Or are you an actual nun... Who's a warrior)

I can answer this one.

963768-warrior_nun_areala_1.3.jpg

In honor of your promotion I have downloaded the original 3 issues of vol.1 and plan to read them later today.

Oh, and seeing as I've posted twice now without asking anything...

If I had to read JUST ONE piece of Tomb Raider fanfic, what would be your recommendation? ;)

Edited by kitsunebi77
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1. Are you a natural redhead. ( I don't know why I picture you as having red hair but I do.)

2. Do you have a college degree, if so what and from where.

3. What do you do for a living.

4. What originally bought you to Retromags,

5. Star Trek or Star Wars

6. Have you ever done cosplay, if so as what.

7. Place you would live if you could pack up and move.

8. Favorite arcade game or games.

9. If you could write for a gaming website, which one.

10. What is the warrior nun reference? (Or are you an actual nun... Who's a warrior)

1 - Yes, although it's more strawberry-blonde than full-on red.

2 - I do, in fact, have a degree. I graduated from Ball State with a double-major in English and Performance Theatre, and a minor in Creative Writing.

3 - I work in a bookstore, which is tons and tons of fun. :)

4 - I found Retromags after typing something like 'video game magazine scans' into Google one night, and joined up shortly thereafter. Back then it was mostly just a bunch of Nintendo Power PDFs, but it's grown exponentially since then, that's for sure.

5 - I love them both, so this is one of those impossible questions. Really, it depends: for pure action, you can't beat Star Wars, but I consider "Wrath of Khan" a better film than all seven Star Wars films combined, so...I guess my answer is, "Yes." :)

6 - I will occasionally put together a costume for Halloween, but I don't do cosplay. If it had been a thing when I was younger, I'd have probably gone a bit nuts, but back then you only wore a costume if you were in a play or it was October 31st. I was She-Ra one year for Halloween (I think I was 8), does that count? :)

7 - My first instinct is to say Japan, but I've no idea what I'd do there since I don't speak the language with any level of proficiency, and unlike Kitsunebi, I have no desire to be a teacher. Thus, I will instead say Colorado, somewhere within driving distance of the Garden of the Gods, because I've never felt more at peace with myself and the world then when I was there on vacation twenty years ago.

8 - This is hard, as I have a lot of fond arcade memories from my childhood. I'm going to say 'Cabal', 'Black Tiger', and (of course) 'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles'. :)

9 - I actually wrote for a gaming website around twelve years ago called Game Bunker. It's now defunct, but I had a lot of fun while I was doing it, and even interviewed Lisa Mason prior to her departure from Game Informer. Nowadays, I don't really aspire to write for anyone but myself, so I'm content with my blog here at Retromags, infrequent though it is.

10 - Kitsunebi answered this already, but yeah, back in the mid-90s, Antarctic Press put out a comic called "Warrior Nun Areala" written and drawn by Ben Dunn of "Ninja High School" fame. His original intent was to just have a three-part mini-series, but the first issue sold so well (it was either the highest or second-highest selling print-run book for AP that year) it essentially launched a brand and helped cement the 'bad girl' genre into mainstream comics history. WNA was just ridiculously fun, and I saw bits and pieces of myself in the main character, so when it came time to pick a nickname for my online persona, nothing else seemed to fit. My avatar, in fact, is a pic of one of the Areala action figures put out by Antarctic Press, because it's ridiculously adorable. I mean, how could you NOT love that face? :)

*huggles*

Areala

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I can answer this one.

963768-warrior_nun_areala_1.3.jpg

In honor of your promotion I have downloaded the original 3 issues of vol.1 and plan to read them later today.

Oh, and seeing as I've posted twice now without asking anything...

If I had to read JUST ONE piece of Tomb Raider fanfic, what would be your recommendation? ;)

I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. :)

Hmmm...just one Tomb Raider fanfic? How about 'Kailas' by John Abney. That was one of my all-time favorites from back in the early days of Tomb Raider fan stories:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/ihghec9nwgftjnx/01_Kailas.zip?dl=0

Abney wrote it in 1998, so it's PS1-era, Core Design studios Tomb Raider chronology. If all one has played is the modern-day Square-Enix reboot or the Crystal Dynamics series from ten years ago, there may be some confusion. :)

*huggles*

Areala

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Hmmm...just one Tomb Raider fanfic? How about 'Kailas' by John Abney. That was one of my all-time favorites from back in the early days of Tomb Raider fan stories:

Aww, you're no fun. Where is the Areala drunk with power going so far as to edit others' posts to sing her praises? It was the perfect pitch. Care to swing again? What's the title of a story Daniel Morris would recommend? :)

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Aww, you're no fun. Where is the Areala drunk with power going so far as to edit others' posts to sing her praises? It was the perfect pitch. Care to swing again? What's the title of a story Daniel Morris would recommend? :)

Drunk with power? Editing others' posts?

<_<

I've no idea what you mean, good sir. We follow the Redhead Rule around these parts: 'Do unto others as Areala, in her infinite wisdom, knows should be done unto them.' Served us well these past seven years, it has. No need to change now, guv, not that I can see... :)

Now, Daniel Morris? I dunno. That guy was into some odd stuff. Seems like 'Extinction' might be the sort of thing he'd enjoy. The weirdo... ;)

*huggles*

Areala

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Now, Daniel Morris? I dunno. That guy was into some odd stuff. Seems like 'Extinction' might be the sort of thing he'd enjoy. The weirdo... ;)

Oh, Lara. What an oblivious single-minded bastard you can be sometimes. You're just lucky you have magical unlimited-ammo-non-reloading pistols and inhumanly unerring aim while running and leaping, aren't you?

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Oh, Lara. What an oblivious single-minded bastard you can be sometimes. You're just lucky you have magical unlimited-ammo-non-reloading pistols and inhumanly unerring aim while running and leaping, aren't you?

We can't all be perfect. Fortunately, Lara can. *purr* :)

*huggles*

Areala

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You know, in some ways, I appreciate being disconnected. So long as I can catch back up in a reasonable time period, that is. I find that the less time I spend online, the more time I spend on hobbies, building the Supra, housekeeping, or other creative endeavors.

That said, the internet has been a great source of entertainment over the years, and I must admit that rather than workout videos, I tend to watch stuff on youtube or netflix while I exercise...

Anyhow, seeing as I'm a car guy, and have been for literally as long as I can remember, literally going back to before I was even school age... I have one question:

Favorite car, if you could name just one. Personally, I can't, so I'd offer a more realistic alternate... what's your favorite car you've owned? Could be a truck, bike, whatever, so long as it gets you around. :)

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Anyhow, seeing as I'm a car guy, and have been for literally as long as I can remember, literally going back to before I was even school age... I have one question:

Favorite car, if you could name just one. Personally, I can't, so I'd offer a more realistic alternate... what's your favorite car you've owned? Could be a truck, bike, whatever, so long as it gets you around. :)

I've never been much of a car girl myself, and I don't have any kind of dream vehicle or anything like that, so this is going to be a dull answer. But, that said, there's something about your first car, so...:

saturn_sl1.jpg

There she is, a 1991 Saturn SL1 from the first year Saturn made cars (that awesome red colour and everything).

While I wish I could say I bought her myself, she was in fact a hand-me-down from my mom, who sold her to me when I went off to college after being awesome and taking care of things like recharging the A/C, flushing the engine, and basically doing all the other associated maintenance duties to ensure I had a reliable vehicle that would get me back and forth from college to home whenever I needed. :)

By the time 2001 rolled around and the timing chain in the engine went out, leaving me with a repair bill higher than what the poor girl was worth, she'd done over 130,000 miles across the country, seen me to and from school thousands of times, safely transported me and my girlfriend on countless dates (yes, even some with the seats leaned back), survived a ferocious hail storm with only a few minor dings and dents, remained otherwise accident-free, and ensured that even if I wanted to make the 45-minute drive home at 2am on a Saturday morning to sleep in my own bed, I could make it.

I've had three other cars since that one, including the one I now drive, but that Saturn will always be my baby, and she's the only one I ever cried over after leaving her on the lot as a trade-in to a different vehicle. :)

*huggles*

Areala

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i was once told that a fantastic way to get to know someone is to ask this question, so i now pose it to you:

how would you say you've changed since childhood?

Well, I certainly got taller...something tells me that's not really what you're going for though. :)

Probably the biggest change I made since becoming an adult is walking away from religion. I spent about thirty years believing in the Church, but after spending time learning to understand what evidence-based claims meant, studying the Bible, and realizing there was more I disagreed with than I could side with when it came to religion, I shrugged it off, ditched the guilt, and haven't looked back.

Make no mistake: I'm not militant about this by any stretch of the imagination, and I have no desire to disabuse anyone else of their religious beliefs. They just didn't work for me. :)

One thing that has really changed as I've grown into an adult: I realized just how many doors we have open to us when we're young, and that the sobering truth of adulthood is the understanding that we can't go through them all. That the older we get, the more doors close off to us, the more limited our options become, and that watching this diminishing of capacity can be horribly depressing. Yet at the same time, it's remarkably liberating to let go of things we know we'll never do or be. The sooner we recognize this, I think, the happier we are.

As a personal example, when I was much younger, when people asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I'd say I wanted to be a Paleontologist, or a movie director, or an actress, or a veterinarian, or an astronaut. Some of those goals I kept with me up until I hit high school or college and realized that I didn't want them any longer. Dinosaurs are fascinating, but much of the actual job of being a Paleontologist can be mind-numbing, repetitive work for which I am not at all suited. Veterinarian too is right out, since I'm not emotionally stable enough to be able to hold life-and-death in my hands when it comes to animals. Letting go of those dreams was sad, but it freed me to examine other areas of my life where I was more strongly suited. So now, I write. I study video game history. I read comics. I help curate this website. I work at a bookstore, where nearly any sort of information on any topic I or anyone else needs, is practically at my fingertips, and I help unite customers with the materials they're seeking.

That's all my job needs to be awesome. I think that's all anybody's job needs: if you feel that you're personally contributing to the betterment of society somehow with what you do, then you don't need to be President or CEO. I can fill my niche, live my life outside of work, be with the beautiful woman who agreed to be my life partner, and I can smile. As a child, I felt the need to have it all; as an adult, I have all that I feel I need. :)

*huggles*

Areala

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How old were you when you realized you were of the lesbian persuasion? How did that process work, as in, was there a specific moment that made you realize it? How did you deal with it at the time? How did others deal with it?

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How old were you when you realized you were of the lesbian persuasion?

I was a freshman in college, eighteen years old, when I first started getting the inkling that I wasn't quite like the majority of the other girls around me. Growing up in the 80's and early 90's, I'm sure I was surrounded by others of the GLBT persuasion, but going to a Catholic high school it just wasn't talked about. Everything in society said, "Girls fall in love with guys." When the channel selector on your TV is busted, and you grow up only watching one channel for nearly twenty years, the idea that there might be other things to watch isn't just a foreign concept, it's one you literally cannot imagine.

How did that process work, as in, was there a specific moment that made you realize it?

I used to play on a MUD, which is like an MMO but completely text-based. One of the other players there was a woman, and since there were fewer girls online than guys, we spent a bit of time chatting about this, that, and the other. One night, she made a comment about how she'd slept with another one of her female friends, and I was like, "...Huh? Two girls can't have sex...how would that even work?"

One she was done rolling around on the floor laughing at me, she assured me that yes, they could, and I learned my new word for the day: 'bisexual'. :)

I spent the next few days processing this information, and it was like a light went on. All the little, weird feelings I had when it came to seeing other girls for the last few years now totally made sense: they were crushes.

How did you deal with it at the time?

It was equal parts exciting and terrifying. On the one hand, I was elated to discover that there was nothing at all wrong with me. On the other hand, I realized this now made me part of a persecuted minority, which terrified me. Fortunately, my college had a GLBT student union, which I joined almost immediately upon figuring things out. For several years, I told people I was bisexual, because that seemed the safest option. But finally I couldn't lie to myself, or anyone else, any longer and discarded that identity. I mean, if I was bisexual I'd be dating guys along with girls, and that just wasn't happening. In fact, I broke up with the guy who had just a year before asked me to marry him because I realized that while he was a good guy and a good friend, I wasn't at all in love with him. Naturally today, I'm glad I did, but at the time it tore me apart, and I agonized over it for days until I realized a short time of discomfort followed by the freedom to follow my heart for the rest of my life trumped trading a short-term piece of happiness for a lifetime of disappointment and knowledge that I'd made a mistake.

How did others deal with it?

The first person I came out to was my brother, who was so amazingly cool about it as I was crying my eyes out over the phone. I was completely terrified as to how my mom would react, but he helped calm me down and remember that mom always said when we were growing up that there was nothing at all either one of us could do that would make her stop loving us. Even so, we concocted a plan that, looking back on it now is hilarious, but was probably mean at the time.

I called my mom, told her I had some very serious news that I needed to tell her, but I was going to tell her in person, not over the phone. Of course, she was all worried and worked up, so by the time I got home about an hour later, she was freaking out about what it might be. After drawing things out a little more, I sat down on the sofa with her and said, "OK, here's the deal: I broke up with my boyfriend, because I figured out that I'm gay."

As we had theorized, this was not the news my mom was expecting to hear. Her first thought was that I was going to tell her I was pregnant. Needless to say, having your daughter come out as a lesbian was nowhere near the apocalyptic levels of awful as having said daughter confess to getting knocked up prior to marriage. Thus, having successfully defused that bomb, she of course had a bunch of questions for me, which I answered as best I could, and in the end my brother was right: even having a gay daughter wouldn't be enough to get her to stop loving me. Given what so many people go through when they come out to their families, I won the friggin' lottery with that one. :)

*huggles*

Areala

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Quite the interesting thread, it's nice getting to know ya at random here. Brother in law is one of them boys that like the other boys, and I honestly couldn't care less. Jesus told us to love one another, as He loved us, and I take that commandment very seriously. People are people, and provided they're not trying to stick their hoo-haws in my haw-hoo, I'm ok with wherever they wanna stick it. :P

Silliness aside, I've known so many folks on both sides of the fence, as well as plenty comfortable to sit on the fence, that I couldn't even say how many fell into which persuasion. That said, I've really come to appreciate the term 'gay,' as it describes the vast majority of those I've known over the years. Rarely have I met anyone who was gay that wasn't pleasant to be around or converse with.

As for the car, there was always a bit of mystique to me, with Saturns. Never drove one, but I had a 94 Cavalier, the more traditional Chevy version of the GM economy car of the era. How that thing ever survived me, I'll never know. Bizarrely, the harder I drove it, the better the fuel economy seemed to be. When moving up here years ago, I was keeping pace with another car (we passed each other for hundreds of miles) and even loaded down with all my stuff, I believe that car managed to get right around 40mpg.

That said, I think it's something about 'firsts' when it comes to cars in general. My first car (the Cav) wasn't a nice car, but it was MINE. My Nissan wasn't a nice car, but it was my first sports car. My Corolla wasn't a nice car, but it was my first Toyota, a love affair that continues to this day. My first Supra WAS a nice car, my first nice car, as it were. My first Miata was my first car with access to the skies above, something that nearly every car I've had since has had. My first Camaro was my first V8 and 300+hp car. The second Supra was my first (and so far only) turbo car. My 1946 Chevy Fleetmaster was the first "project" car that I've ever bought, where it was a blank canvas. My Lexus LS was the first car I bought without any intention of ever actually liking, only to fall in love with how it drove.

Like I said, cars can be such a fun experience, and so long as each one brings something new to the table, I don't think it ever gets old. :)

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People are people, and provided they're not trying to stick their hoo-haws in my haw-hoo, I'm ok with wherever they wanna stick it. :P

Commandment the Eleventh: Thou shalt not go around sticking thy hoo-haw into other people's haw-hoos unless consent hath been established prior to the sticking. Yea verily, I say unto thee: The sign for Pleasure St. doth not read "One Way" but is in fact a many-directioned roundabout which only worketh when everyone obeyeth the Me-damned rules! ;)

*huggles*

Areala

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I am glad things worked out as well for you as they did. I know we have all heard stories about people (mostly boys) being bullied, harassed, and even assaulted because they were a little light for heavy duty. Eventually, hopefully, we'll get to the point where no one will care which way you go, though with the religious nuts there in the US, that may never happen over there. Over here it doesn't seem to be an issue and never comes up as a news story like it does in the States.

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Well said E-day. I think we're getting there, however our country has a nasty habit of stirring shit up when it has something to distract the populace from. Seems every election year, SOMETHING major happens when our elected officials can't get their poo straightened out.

I'm all for folks being with whoever they choose. Like Areala said, it's all about consent. Not MY consent in YOUR life, either. My life is my business, your life is yours. The sooner we get the government out of our bedrooms, and the sooner folks learn to MYOFB, the better off we'll all be. :)

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I only have one question for Areala. Can Canada redeem itself or is it a lost cause?

There is no hope for anyone. We are all doomed. Canada will be consumed first.

Have a nice (E-)Day! :)

*huggles*

Areala

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