I'm sure 99 percent of the people reading the title of this blog expected some metaphorical tie-in.
Sorry to disappoint. No, really I am.
I want to take a few minutes and tell you about a local Austin gaming company that went way out of their way to help The HeliOS Project.
And let me break your heart early.
She's already seeing someone.
The Edge of Reality is an Austin firm that makes games for the console. Brittany Henry, a producer for Edge of Reality emailed me a while back and asked me if I would be interested in, oh...I dunno, somewhere around 70 monitors and 40 Pentium 4 computers? My reply was pretty simple if I recall.
I laid on the truck for that day but try as I could, I wasn't able to find anyone that had Friday off and was willing to help me load this cargo.
It was a lot of cargo.
Taking one final shot, I posted a simple blog, asking if anyone would consider helping me the next day. Fortunately, because had I needed to do this myself, I would still be there; a young man named Justin Carnahan chimed in and said he would be happy to.
I don't think he had any idea.......
It was a disaster from the moment we walked in the door.
The Edge of Reality occupies some of the most expensive glassy and chrome-ie office footage available in Austin. Yes, I have heard the console gaming industry is doing ok for itself. This pretty well proves it.
We had brought pallets and pallet jack, shrink wrap and other assorted implements of destruction to get the job done.
Note to self...21 inch CRT's do not stabilize well unboxed and on a pallet. Trying to put 8 monitors on a pallet and shrink wrapping them resulted in monitors trying desperately to escape the shrink wrap oh, I'd say in about 5 feet of transport.
Once we did succeed in getting a pallet of them down the elevator, we found that the 12 degree lip on the liftgate was much too steep to get the pallet jack onto it...not without bumping it with an 18 inch head start.
Which resulted in monitors wanting to impact upon the hot asphalt in the worst way.
So, 4 at a time, we hauled the monitors down to the truck, lift-gated them up to the truck and carried them one-by-one to the back of the truck, stacking them as tightly together as possible.
By the way, miracles do happen. We transported these monitors about 30 miles in a bumpy truck ride without breaking one. We broke only one in the loading process. (see the part about 12 degree lips)
The computers themselves were not that bad as they play well together when in a group. Nice, neat stacks that didn't threaten to commit mass suicide at the least little bump. I like them. 21 inch CRT's not so much.
Justin Carnahan was a life-saver that day and I owe him much more than the Chili's steak dinner we bought for him.
Then came the real surprise.
We had left the truck loaded because I had yet to secure storage for the beasts. Upon arising for the morning, I did what I always do. I reached for my coffee cup to make some instant while my ancient Mr. Coffee chugged to make the real stuff.
I reached for it with my left hand. Gravity ensued. Grip was not as strong as gravity.
In fact, there was no grip at all. Subsequent trips to the Dr. revealed that I had repetitively stressed a tendon in my left arm. Further Dr. visits to a specialist discovered I had torn said tendon.
Two surgeries later, I believe it will be ok. It was really too far from my heart to kill me but you couldn't convince my cry baby self about that at the time. Besides, they were micro-surgeries...I even got to watch the monitor as the Doctor spot-welded it together. It left a bee-sting sized scar for me to show off at parties...oh the sacrifices made...
So...giving away computers to kids is easy...fun actually.
Gathering them in one place, can at times, rate a 10 on your "that-sucks-O-Meter."
But what do you expect...
It all happened at The Edge of Reality.
As so much of my life does it seems.