A Retreat and a Farewell

All I Need by Within Temptation
Fire in the Night by After Omega
A Separate Peace by John Knowles (just finished)

10:10 Retreat
I had a retreat at Caliraya Re-Creation Center with my CCF friends last weekend. At first I was apprehensive about going—I’d not gone to retreats in such a long time and due to recent emotional turmoil I wasn’t really in the mood. However, I knew I needed it, so I made an effort to go anyway. (Aumar had already paid for me in advance, so it would be a shame to waste that payment).

I’m happy I went. Things began to fall into place again, and I left with a renewed sense of purpose. I can’t be a man without being a leader, and I can’t be a leader without being a vision. By the grace of God, I now have one. As of yet, however, I can’t really share it. All I have to say is that everything seems to be so much better now that I’m actually applying what I believe in. Many thanks to all the people involved, and above all, I thank the Lord for moving mightily in my life once more.

Pics on my [multiply]. (Contacts only)

A Separate Peace

I hated this book when I first encountered it nine years ago in my third year of High School. I didn’t see the point, didn’t feel the need to read it, and didn’t empathize with the characters. I was so immature and so blinded by the flash and boom of my video games that I didn’t realize how similar I was to Gene.

Now, as an adult, I read the novel in preparation for the long test I was giving my first year students. The book grew on me, and now I understand what it was all about. I was not very different from Gene—an insecure young man who always saw others as competition, building up elaborate defenses against them without knowing that my greatest enemy was myself. I’m happy to have reconciled myself to this novel.

A Farewell and A Tribute

Ernest Gary Gygax, creator of the original Dungeons & Dragons roleplaying game, has passed away at the age of 69. The game he developed proved tenacious in the face of zealous, well-meaning-but-misled Christians who decried the game as promoting Satanism and the occult (which it does not, seriously—players are likely to kill demons more than summon them, though the option is there. Much like real life, where good and evil is mostly up to you.).

D&D went through three (and a half) editions—the first two of which were written by TSR, Gygax’s company, while 3.0 and 3.5 were produced by Wizards of the Coast, which had purchased TSR before it filed for bankruptcy. And now, on the cusp of the release of the Fourth Edition, Gygax rolls his last save and passes on to face our Good Lord. I hope that I would see him when I go the way of all flesh and join the Lord’s heavenly host.

If not for D&D, our modern RPGs wouldn’t be the same. Before D&D, people stopped roleplaying once they grew out of Cops & Robbers or Cowboys & Indians. D&D made the RPG a viable gaming genre, it gave its exuberant spirit a form, it made it flesh. It reminded people of how fun it was to imagine one was a knight on horseback, or a wizard of incredible power. It inspired many future game-makers to produce RPGs. Final Fantasy, Chrono Trigger, Baldur’s Gate, Neverwinter Nights, Diablo, and I hate to say this, but even MMOs like Ragnarok and World of Warcraft were all inspired, directly or indirectly, by the grandfather of all modern RPGs.

GG, Mr. G.G. I owe you hours of fun and enjoyment with my players—my students and my Creative Writing club members—with whom I otherwise wouldn’t know what to do. God speed thee to thy eternity.



Your Black Lion


~ by J. R. R. Flores on March 5, 2008.

4 Responses to “A Retreat and a Farewell”

  1. Yeah, heard about Gary Gygax’s death. It’s quite a loss to the industry. Nevertheless, the industry wouldn’t be where it is now if not for his efforts and influence.

  2. The sympathetic response to his death is overwhelming. WotC and even the World of Warcraft website have tributes to him, not to mention every other geeky webcomic out there.

  3. Not geeky, sir, you go to them too.
    And yes, FFVII couldn’t exist without him. Heck, no Final Fantasy would exist! How sad. How very sad indeed.

  4. Many people can relate to Gene because he is simply human unlike finny who is good at everything so naturally gene gets jealous but in the end he forgives himself.

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