Portland, meet Old

The blog entry below was originally meant to be a preface to another blog. I wanted to make fun of Old for a set of notes he gave me to help remember the events of a recent night of drinking. The fact that he was keeping track of our misadventures on paper is indeed noteworthy. And if it was a simple jibing, yes, I could have left it as a tiny blurb at the beginning of another story. However, it was what he took his notes on, and the fact that Old has an oh-so-predictable tendency to note-take, that was so blog worthy. So, instead of a brief preface, I've decided to devote a whole blog entry to introducing Old to Portland...a snapshot of his mind at work.

First off, if you know Old, you know that he always carries a pen with him. While I used to think this was learned behavior, carrying over from his graffiti days, I've since learned otherwise. Simply put, Old is a natural note taker. I'd like to blame it on his old age and subsequent onset of Alzheimer's (in other words, his attempt not to forget everything), but I can't even do that. The truth of the matter is that Old's note taking is more of a compulsion than an organizational skill (although he is pretty organized). Case in point: an organized person would carry a note pad with him in anticipation of their note taking exploits. This is not true of Old. Instead, he compulsively scribbles whatever he deems significant at the moment on random objects. These objects can be found in his surroundings, such as a napkin or coaster from a bar, or they can be found crumpled up in his pocket, such as a match box or gum wrapper. Perhaps he is just doing his best as a conservationist, opting not to waste paper and instead make use of recycled products. On some level, I think this to be true. However, the root lies not in his desire to be eco-friendly, rather his compulsion to take notes and not having his said note pad.

I can go on about Old's long history of taking notes on random surfaces, but I'd like to move on to the second part our peek at the man that is Old.

Like I mentioned above, this entry was originally going to be a brief preface to another story (hopefully that story will be posted in the next couple days). See, on a recent night of drinking, pondering life, and wandering aimlessly around Portland, Old was at it again taking his notes. Although I make fun of him, I do appreciate it, as I wouldn't have remembered half the night were it not for his notes, thus not allowing me to write about it later. So, a couple days after the fact, upon getting an itch to write, I asked Old for his notes so I could blog about the night. Having a plate full of blog ideas for himself, he was amenable to giving up his notes and letting me write about the night. However, instead of giving me the piece of paper that held his scribbles, he decided to type up a copy for me. He explained that I wouldn't be able to read his handwriting, but I think he didn't want to part with the original copy of his notes (I think that when the compulsion is strong enough, you start hoarding). Without giving it much thought, he typed away, a process that I thought was pretty insignificant at the time. Upon further review, though, his typing became significant, indeed. It took a long way to get here, but this is the second part of our peek into Old's mind.

After printing the notes, Old handed me the paper to take home. When looking at the notes, neatly bulleted and organized by chronology, I noticed there was printing on the back of the paper. I know Old and Kes will reuse paper for printing purposes, so I figured the back of the paper was an old email or news article. Out of curiosity, though, I checked out the back side of the paper. I discovered something fascinating and simultaneously fist-clench-provokingly stressful. Old had printed his notes on a recycled "Lone Wolf Action Chart." What the fuck is an action chart, you ask? Well folks, here's where we get to know Old a little better...From the looks of it, an action chart is some sort of score keeper for an apparent fantasy dragon slaying game. One half of the action chart keeps track of Kai Disciplines (huh?), which consist of the powers of "healing, mindblasting, sixth sense, mind over matter, and weapons skill sword;" weapons, which consist of a princes sword and warhammer; and special items, such as a "map of summerland, a golden key, a magic spear, and firesphere." The other half of the chart keeps track of endurance points and the combat record.

Okay Old, what the hell are you doing with this? And furthermore, why is it filled out as if you've just recently slayed some dragons with your hammerhead and won some gold coins to put in your belt pouch? This is, of course, a rhetorical question, as I know exactly why he has an action chart. I just want all you readers to know why as well. See, in Old's previous life, he lived in a wooded village inhabited by elves and hobbits. His house was built into a small hillside, and in his spare time he mapped out mountain caves and looked for the dragons that lived in them. He cast spells and worked at perfecting his wizardly craft. Somehow, that instinct has travelled with him through the ages and we still see glimpses of it when he plays such games as Zelda or reads Orson Scott Card books. It is his nature to have one foot in reality, the other in the fantasy world, for he is a wizard. To fight this instinct would be suppressing his nature, so instead he embraces it. And for those close to him, we humor him by playing the Lord of the Rings board game or watching Willow with him.

So for anybody who needs some dragons slayed or magical gems located, Old's your guy. Keep doing your thing, buddy.


Anonymous said...

Freakiness from the Shire! - Mikey

Oldie said...

I can't believe you left out that I had secured the Stone of Eternal Champion (Level 15 Dwarf Mage only)! I spent over 228.3 hours questing to obtain that rare item of magical radness.

Anonymous said...

Hey everyone jeff isn't crazy...I can atest to olde's note taking, being his wife. I find piles of scribbled on town up pieces of paper all the time around our home. But i have to say he is the best at keepin me int he loop this way as to what is going on in our life together as a couple.