hit counter code Taking The Time
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Taking The Time
Author: Keith Haney

It has been a while since I updated the site. With the arrival of a new baby many things tend to go on hold. My game group is suffering from spring fever. This is something that happens every spring, but this time I am adding to the syndrome with my own schedule adjustments.

This leads me to a topic that often comes up in role-playing -- The schedule. Back when I was in high school I had a lot more time for gaming. In fact it was usually more difficult to find a place to play then the time to play it. As I started to take stock of the places we have managed to play, or complete a gaming session I start to feel like I was listing the places where young romantics steal away to consummate their love.

I have played in the car of a church parking lot under the parking lights so we could see our dice rolls, snuck into the basement of a friends parents house in order to whisper the words that would spell the fates of the adventurers we controlled, snowed in at a mountain lodge at a ski resort (with perfect snow conditions outside), On a dark highway returning from a road trip to an isolated gambling town. This should give yo some Idea the lengths that we would go to in order to embrace the untold adventures ahead or smite the foe who had been taunting us for months.

Now at age 40 I have managed to curb the need to play at all hours and in clandestine locations (for the most part). The challenge now is finding the time and keeping to it in a world filled with changing works schedules, travel requirements and so on. For five adult males in professional positions this can be a struggle.

Enter the salvation. We established several years ago that we would play every other week for a block of 6 to 7 hours at a time. We agreed that the day of the week would not change and the time was fairly firm. This gives the other people in our lives a predictable schedule that they come to expect and appreciate. For us we can schedule our outside interests around this fixed gaming schedule. A friend compared it to taking time out to watch your favorite TV show each week. It was with this reasoning we dealt with absences. If you cannot make game night it continues without you. If you miss an episode of King of Queens you have to wait for the water cooler discussion the next day at work. So too it is with us, and game night. The only time this does not work is if we have 2 or more players that cannot make a game session. In this case we usually skip that session entirely and move on. As I mentioned, our outside influences like wives, family, etc. have come to plan on our session time and if we change, it all comes crashing down.

With the turbulent spring behind us and summer rearing its head, we continue to pilot our steady ship of role-playing on its course, navigating the endless barrage of outside influences that would seek to keep us from our private adventure into worlds and deeds that we share. These shared adventures keep and bind us like a band of brothers.

I should mention that as a game group we do manage to share other experiences like Camping, running, biking, LAN parties, social gatherings, and even employers on occasion.

I realize that this months column is a little more rambling that my usual writing, but it at least got me back in the saddle after missing 2 months.