Hello world!


Ok so if you hadn’t guessed it already I’m a huge geek.

I play computer games, a lot. Mostly Rift and some DDO. I used to play NWN, Dragon Age, KOTOR, etc. Always leaned more to the RPG side of things than to the frag side.

So, this is my blog. Hi!

Eviction Meeting Result

As a result of the meeting which should never have happened, I have to pay the filing fee but the amount owed for the paperwork error of market rent was forgiven. The filing fee where I live is $170.

So the amount of donations would cover that, except that the government would take 50% immediately, and the housing would take 30% in extra rent next month, for having “income.”

Although there is a fund available for things like this, access to that fund was denied by my caseworker. Although I can appeal that decision, I still have to find a way to pay this fee first or I face eviction in March for nonpayment.

I’ll be canceling my internet for two months as of January in order to pay the fee. This means that unless I’m well enough to go out to a community centre or employment centre, I have no phone and no way to contact my caseworker, housing worker, or any way to have a doctor call me back.

Welfare is a human rights abuse. Arbitrarily you can be denied the basics of food, shelter, or medical care, on the whim of one person who answers only to the demand that they get people off welfare. It’s not about helping people, if it were, I would have gone to college and had a job, rather than being left to rot for over 10 years while I was only half as sick as I am now. I only just got a phone and was trying to save up money for transportation to get to a doctor’s appointment by eating less. I started fainting because of it and had to eat to live. So for three years already these people have denied me access to a doctor to find out what the problem even is that’s making me so exhausted all the time.

But without canceling the access to the outside world for at least two months, I don’t get to eat. My caseworker will again be able to simply forget I exist, because I won’t be able to call her or get there to bug her face-to-face.

The tragedy goes on. It’s called life.

I’m not the only person being starved, denied medical care, pressured into prostitution despite that I’m too sick to even clean my house, oh no. This is simply the way life works in Canada when you don’t have a family to care about you.

Still trying to raise $2000 to start the charity and be off assistance for one month to get it all going so these crooked people acting on behalf of our government can’t find a way to stop it. If you can help, please donate through paypal. If you can’t help, please pray for me and give a kind word to another soul this Christmas. Thank you.

89 more pledges needed to hit the $2k min #ExtraHeart

The results of the Dec 8 gaming marathon are in: $195 raised from 4 donors. This is an incredible response as I have only 351 twitter followers and the event was mostly spread through that. This is the internet. Nobody had to do anything at all, but you did! We should all be very proud.

Unfortunately that hits about 10% of the minimum needed, which means I may need to give that money back due to government red tape.

There’s one more pledge of $20 been given since the event was over.

In the next few days I’ll be doing the best I can to negotiate with the THC to forgive the “debt” as it was caused by a paperwork error and I can prove that my income was the same throughout the entire time. There was no reason for my rent to have been raised to market rates for two months.

If they listen to reason, the whole of the donations can be used to make this charity happen. I hope they listen.

But again, an amount must be raised that will exceed the government red tape which restricts the income I’m even allowed to have. Without that minimum amount, the effect on my life will be worse as the government will take 50% of whatever is raised, or simply cut me off assistance, and then 30% will be taken by the social housing where I live, drastically reducing the amount that can be used towards the goal.

This is why it’s so important to hit that $2000 minimum, because only then is the maximum amount of money YOU gave going towards this effort. I still hope that we can reach the $10,000 to start the charity outright, but that depends on you.

Tell your friends about this, give if you can. Leave comments to encourage me to keep going if this is something you find worthwhile. I really appreciate everything you’ve done and I know that together we can do this!

We just need 89 more pledges of $20 each. Do you know someone who might be looking for an inspiring Christmas gift? Send them here!

Research for starting a not-for-profit charity #ExtraHeart

Great link about what’s needed legally in BC (somewhat applicable interprovincially) http://www.artsbc.org/resources/for-organizations/starting-a-not-for-profit-organization

Need to find out:

  1. How many board members are needed at a minimum?
  2. Do I have to incorporate the charity in order to apply for tax-exempt status?
  3. What will the exact registration costs be for every option? (Provincial non-incorporated, provincial Ontario incorporation, nationwide incorporation.)
  4. How exactly does non-incorporation work, since all the info on the structure of a charity assumes incorporation?

I’d prefer to incorporate nationwide and make the charity and status available for people to use in their local areas by merely writing to me and making records available. That way others don’t have to have the expense of registration and can just move on to helping people and accepting donations.

Already have:

  • The idea
  • An internet connection
  • A plan describing purpose, equipment, costs, and etc (my prior self-employment experience and education made that part of the plan easy)

Lots more research to come.

Why I want to help people (Mature Topics/Trigger Warning)

The short version is because I know what it is to need help. The long version:

I’ve been living here for over three years now. A week before I moved in, I was attacked in the hospital when I went in for a routine surgery. I was threatened with death if I went to the police, so I was too scared to report it. After that, I was really sick. At first, I didn’t really notice how bad it was, because a friend was helping me with errands and housework. But after a few things happened, I began to be scared he was involved in the attack somehow. I would have strange feelings of euphoria after eating food he’d given me, then the next day sudden suicidal feelings which lasted a few days.

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Changing the World One Heart at a Time #ExtraHeart

The last few weeks I’ve been brainstorming ways to use the awesome power of gaming to actually, you know, help people.

Came up with a few ideas to just help the poor as well, not really associated with gaming. So here’s the list of what I’m thinking about creating. Feel free to use any of these ideas locally to help people in your community!

  1. Short video series about what’s different about poverty in developed countries. Why is it so tough to affect lasting change? Would have to offer positive solutions and be entertaining.
  2. Charity that provides vouchers for haircuts, manipedi, waxing, or connects esthetician/hairstyling students seeking experience to homeless people who need makeovers, etc. “Look Good Feel Better” for people who don’t have cancer but are recovering from severe life changes like homelessness or other big scary transitions. You’re not going to go confidently into a job interview or important appointment with ragged hair and no makeup! Plus looking like you take care of yourself subconsciously makes people treat you better.
  3. Charity that supplements the help foodbanks provide by giving grocery store gift cards so people on assistance can buy perishables, not just be given cans ignoring special dietary needs, etc. Need to brainstorm ways to prevent abuse of the system by government.
  4. Teach new media/game development skills to homeless women and at-risk youth by building up a library of new media teaching materials on dvd and laptop then going in to pre-existing computer labs and helping people learn by going through the material together. Could be combined with opensource efforts like Blender, GIMP, Inkscape.
  5. Charity that helps people moving on from shelters to housing repair broken social networks by helping them play team-based videogames together. Provides a computer, internet for a year, and a game subscription to their choice of Rift, TERA, WoW, SWTOR, DDO, LOL. Encourages them to use social media to write about their experiences making friends online where nobody has to know their past.
  6. Charity that takes videos of people on the street and gathers their stories. Then helps connect them to agencies and programs that actually help and provides long-term advocacy. If there are no programs to help people like them, fundraises online for their specific needs using those video interviews.
  7. Charity Gaming Marathon “Barnraisings” to help people locally fundraise for poor people in their area, with the monies raised going directly to people in need chosen by the marathoners themselves – not some big charity company that gives money to other charities and nobody ever knows the impact on real people’s lives.

Now, to evaluate these ideas for what I can do RIGHT NOW and START SMALL:

  1. Run a gaming marathon myself and stream it, run another in say, six months, with better publicity – Check
  2. Make webcam video talks about the issues surrounding poverty in the developed world and put them on youtube – Writing ideas down now, check
  3. Grab some tutorials about how to learn to make indie games, and go start a club at my local community centre’s computer drop-in. (This would mostly help at-risk youth just because of the area but it would be open to anyone who drops by.)

Now, are these ideas doable? Are they HELL YEAH ideas?

  1. Hell yeah!
  2. Have webcam, have things to talk about in an informative and entertaining way, but kinda scared people might not listen if I don’t look presentable. (Haircut, makeup, showered, clean clothes – yes, those things are all challenges for me at times due to the extreme fatigue.)
  3. I’d LOVE to do this, however getting out of the house physically is sometimes a big challenge! Other challenges? Check with the staff about putting the free software on their computers, then just hope to not be too sick to show up to my own club once or twice a month. LOL!
    Maybe I can make a website with links to the resources and be available on skype when I physically can’t walk two blocks to get there, although I’m still worried about it being perceived as disinterest or laziness or all the nasty words people threw at me hurtfully not realizing I have a real, physical illness just because I still look pretty and skinny.

#ExtraHearts Fundraising Challenge Presented!

Every gamer knows when you need to restore life, you need to find another heart-shaped item, right? Besides, Extra Life was taken. 😉

On December 8, 2012 I will be streaming a 24h marathon gaming session on Twitch in order to raise money to pay off a minor error that has become a huge nightmare of eviction: $4950 for just two months of missing paperwork!

Big number isn’t it?

Yea. I have no idea how to raise that much money. However I want to raise much more and do something more useful to the world than just pay rent for a couple of months. The goal is $10,000, with the rest going towards creating a charity.

What I really want to do is find a way to use the power of gaming to help others. I just don’t know how to help others when I need so much help myself.

Gamers are so much more than the media gives us credit for. We can be caring people who recognize that there’s a real person behind the avatar, behind the forum name, behind the twitter account. We can decide to gather together and achieve amazing things when we put our minds to it. Things like Extra Life, Child’s Play, GamesAid, AbleGamers. Online events where gamers rally friends and family to make big things happen.

I want this to turn into something much bigger than just me.

In further posts over the next while I’ll explain the reasoning behind those numbers, a little more about me, and a lot more about this idea.

Challenge presented – challenge accepted?

First Impressions of TERA Trial

So after seeing their marketing video I never wanted to play TERA. It seemed aimed squarely at attracting elitist bullies and trash talking pvp nerds, with no focus on building community.

Entering TERA via Pegasus

Enter TERA with me

My guildies say the game itself is quite different, with people helping each other in general chat and an actual sense of teamwork. So I decided to give it a shot.

Unfortunately, being unable to talk on a trial account did not allow me to find out if my biggest reason to NOT get the game was valid or not. TERA needs to implement a “friend code” version of the trial which doesn’t have so many limitations.

After the cut, will go into more depth about my responses, pros, cons, and conclusion – decision to buy or not! May be a bit NSFW depending on your workplace. You’ve been warned!
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