Robert Klein used to do a bit about opening for a Richie Havens' concert in the 70's that was very funny. I heard it on Doctor Demento several times during my formative years, and several parts of the routine have stuck with me. None so much, though, as when he is about to go onstage to a crowd of screaming fans who are, sadly, screaming, "Ri-chie, Ri-chie!" At that point, he sees the stage manager sitting under a sign that reads, "Last Human Being Before The Stage". I use that term all of the time, even though no one gets it.
Last night, the final gaming session at my home in Multnomah Village was the Last Human Being Before The Stage. We have no more visitors, no more guests, no more anything but packing, getting our new place ready (including demolding one room, always nice to have a little surprise when you move into a place), and sleeping for about 10 minutes per night.
I was quite touched that so many people, both new and old, made the trip out for the last session at the place where Rip City Gamers was born. Eleven people in all, and a couple who couldn't make it at the last minute. Not a lot of games on the table, but given that I am in the early stages of a bronchial infection brought on by remodelling dust and almost certainly mold and have gotten about six hours of sleep the entire week, I was OK with that. Great fun was had by all, including what at least sounded like the most entertaining game of El Grande ever (and Matt and Ben correctly predicted that they would come in 1 and 2, aided by Chuck). The rest of us played Elfenlands, just to give a nod to 1998 and the year we started gaming as a group.
Thanks to all who have attended even a single session (OK, I may have one or two exceptions), but especially to those who were able to come last night. This was the event that demarcates this home going from ours to a place we need to vacate in a bit more than a week, and I couldn't think of a nicer group of people to celebrate it with.
Now we have the hard work, at least in terms of dealing with what we keep and what we try to avoid paying people to move for us. Amazing how much junk you build up in 10 years, especially considering that when we moved here we'd moved three times in 14 months and thus had very little in the way of furniture. In fact, almost everything we have in this house we bought while we were living here, or else inherited it from my mother when she moved to Spring Chicken Ridge (her retirement community). We've done a good job of getting rid of books, and I've even pared the games down a bit at the Rainy Day Games auctions (and a damned shame I missed the last one, as I could have tossed a few more their way). Even so, I'm figuring something like 40 boxes of books and written materials (including old RPG stuff), and a similar number of boxes for my games. Anything to try to cut into the packing costs - I just don't have the stamina to be carrying a lot of boxes around, but I'm happy to build them and fill them.
We waited until after the RCG session because I wanted games to be accessible, but also because we have about half of our books in the dining room where we play. Sorry, used to play. Sigh. Now we'll be spending a few days getting all of those books in boxes that will sit in that room, as well as filling a lot of boxes in the Doug Room. I'm very interested to see if I can fit all of my games in the new room - at the very least it will be an impressive sight.
In the new house, we have a little mold issue to get resolved, but otherwise we're on track for moving in a week from today. Thank God I'm married to a woman who has a pathological need for order, otherwise I'd never remember if we'd contacted the right people at the right time. Here's an example:
1) Tuesday morning - piano movers arrive to pick up the grand
2) Tuesday lunch - Piano movers arrive at new house to drop off the grand
2.5) Tuesday lunch - Mel signs closing papers on old house (she works that day)
3) Tuesday afternoon - Comcast shows up to install broadband
4) Tuesday afternoon - I sign closing papers on old house
4.5) Work is ongoing in the house, lots of little problems we're fixing.
5) Wednesday morning - Movers arrive to load truck
6) Wednesday morning - Carpet people show up to clean and appraise Very Expensive Persian Rug With Paint From Rampaging Dog On It (it goes on Wednesday because the piano is on top of it - very heavy - and they only pick up on Wednesdays)
7) Wednesday afternoon - Movers unload our entire world in the new house
8) Wednesday afternoon - Dish Network folks and the HOA rep show up to install the new dish, hook up to the receiver. We'll have a small TV set up to test this. Potential Problem: we aren't really sure where the A/V stack will go.
So as you can see, it's going to be a rather busy week. As a former project manager, this is the kind of crazy critical path that leaves you up at 3am wondering if there wasn't someone else that was supposed to show up on Tuesday but it didn't get onto the schedule. AIIIIIEEEEEEE!!!!!!!
Fortunately, the rest of the week isn't so bad, although AS I TYPE THIS I'm learning that the room with the mold is NOT going to be ready for us to move in as we're not likely to get the test back in time for it to matter. AIIIIIEEEEEE!!!!!
If anyone has good sedatives I can borrow, this would be the time to call me. ;-)
Like I said, the bloom is off the rose, and we're in the ugly part of moving. That's saying something.