Month 7 Report

Like a dog returning to his vomit, I can’t help coming back to Twitch every few moons to see how things are going. The algorithm showed me a face I hadn’t seen or thought about in over a decade: a young woman (now middle-aged, I suppose) who I last saw putting her Persona 3 cosplays up on Tumblr. That was 2010, over fourteen years ago. I’d gotten in touch with her over it, come to know her in passing, then lost sight of her as she ventured into the modeling scene in Los Angeles. And now here she was, live on Twitch on a Friday night with thirty-six viewers against a supposed 94.8K followers.

There could be all kinds of reasons for that numeric disparity, but I couldn’t help but feel that that was exactly what my game development career would have looked like had I kept on keeping on. A moment of virality can play all sorts of tricks on a person, even convince them to continue on with ventures that are otherwise practical wastes of time.

Another example in the same vein is the fellow who recently quit their job to become a full-time artist. I’d noticed lately that he’d entered that phase of independent artistry where one feels the need to consume media in the hopes of drawing inspiration. I know that period well: I spent hundreds of hours slavishly completing other people’s video games during my tenure as a developer, only to realize that what I’d really been doing was diverting my attention away from my own responsibilities. Elaborate procrastination in the guise of “research” or “materials gathering”. Wasted time.

This artist has been spending more hours playing video games live on Twitch during their prime creative hours than they have honing their craft. I mean, it’s undeniable when one records and publishes their detour behaviors for all to see. And some fool had gone and gifted this struggling artiste a hundred gift subscriptions to their Twitch channel (a 250 USD value) and thus flipped the “I must now livestream” switch. It’s been both validating and sad to see this promising penciller push all their time into the vain pursuit. Now that the gift subscriptions have fallen off it’s just depressing to see the “18/150 Subs” goal on their page.

But you have to have goals, right? Though, if I recall correctly from the S.M.A.R.T. training I got way back in 1999 at Berlitz, Japan, Inc., the A stood for achievable. We could call the R for relevancy to task in this case, though I suppose with money being the root of all…

One last happy/sad note on a third live streamer, one who I’ve used often in my past examples of struggling without gain: they’ve finally had to get a real job. Their socials have all but gone dark, and I can only hope that they’re starting to realize, gently, that the time they spent locked into a gaming chair in front of burning lights and cameras was perhaps not as wise an investment as they originally believed. And espoused, because let’s be real, that’s the worst part of it: these people who chose to expose themselves on the Internet for a handful of pennies make it exponentially worse by telling other people that they can, too.

On top of all that, I’ve returned to ‘streaming. For now, it’s a limited run show that’s as low-production and casual as I can make it. After unpacking everything for the new house, I realized I had a space for the thousands of dollars of equipment I purchased with the intent of “going live on the Internet”, so like someone who hasn’t hit the slopes in over a decade I’ve dusted off my skis and I’m going down the bunny slope on my butt.

As long as I’ve done my ninety minutes of physical exercise and four hours of writing, I'm fine. If it starts infringing on that time…

Another note on livestreaming: I go live at random times, have only this site’s link in my bio, have subscriber-only chat turned on, and still people on the graphics/emotes grind have managed to find and message me on Instagram and X, sites I only use to post notifications. Now that’s either serious dedication or these people are employing bots that go above and beyond the call of duty. Either way, by way of preemption: I do not need graphics or emotes for my livestream. Direct the energy elsewhere. Like, planting trees or taking care of local seniors.


There are “people” out there who become enraged if you misgender them, yet those same “people” continue to deadname the social media platform X.

It’s been a decade since the first season of True Detective.

I absolutely despise digital video game storefronts that advertise discounts by claiming it’s the “last chance” or “final time” to get a certain deal. This is literally false advertising, as anyone who’s spent a season watching video games sales knows that in as short as a month later the game will be back on sale at the same or steeper discount. Just stop it, stores— and Fanatical, I’m looking especially sharply at you two swagabonds.

I’m forty-nine now. See you next month.


Next: May 2024
Previous: March 2024