Monday, 24 October 2011

We'd like to be unhappy but we never do have the time.

This blog started off being concerned with my inability to get any actual wargaming done.

This post, however is going to be about my inability to blog about my inability to get any actual wargaming done.

Family Duty has become significantly more Full Time than was originally planned - agreed days off have failed to materialise, and the working day is starting earlier and ending later with more variability than expected. Happily this isn't entirely down to medical grounds. In fact this week we received the good news that my father is responding well to the new treatments, and is not only visibly stronger but has now gone nearly two weeks without the transfusions he previously required weekly.

Unfortunately this newfound vigour has manifested itself in a drive to engage in a Grand Project, namely clearing out the junk room, redecorating it and moving into it from his current, smaller bedroom. Formerly my bedroom when I used to live there, it started out full of the junk that I couldn't fit into my one bedroom flat when I moved out (which included a large amount of bulky gaming stuff.) Over the years it transitioned to full junk-room status, being the dumping ground for Xmas decorations, zimmer frames and on at least one occasion, a semi-functioning porta-potty.

Clearing this room has been an ongoing, low-level task for much of this year, and has been one of the drivers for my getting back into wargaming (finding a box full of figures, waxing nostalgic... you get the gist) but the Old Man announced a couple of weeks ago that he wanted it completely emptied by the end of this month. I am now surrounded by plastic storage boxes full of what can only be described as gaming archaeology. You know, all those old projects you think you start out trying but never quite take off? You know the ones where half the figures get undercoated, then shoved in a box and forgotten?

In a way it's fascinating, seeing the things I've dabbled in over the years. There's a 6mm Samurai DBA army here, along with a fairly extensive quantity of unpainted 6mm Heroics & Ros English Civil War figures stuck to temporary card bases. I'm not sure why I ever thought 2mm science-fiction miniatures were a good idea, but there's a box of 'em here. I used to do a lot of sci-fi gaming, which explains the box of crudely scratchbuilt TIE Fighters to match a small number of X-Wings. There's the box of Star Trek micro-machines that had their 15 minutes of fame back in the day, and another box containing four crudely sculpted knock-offs of the Babylon 5 Star-Fury fighters, along with a set of vector movement rules I wrote specifically for them.

The worst thing about all these little half-baked projects is , like the 15mm stuff I mentioned a few weeks back, there's nothing complete enough to be sold as "ready to play", but the half work I've already done with them in a lot of cases would probably devalue them as fixer-uppers (personally I'd rather buy completely unpainted minis than pre-undercoated. I'd feel I'd have to strip the primer off first before doing anything with them.)

Not everything here is an abandoned write-off. I used to do a fair bit of 6mm SF and ultra-modern gaming, and the two tool-boxes of figures and vehicles may yet see action once again. There are several fileboxes of Hot Wheels cars in various states of conversion for Car Wars and similar automobile combat games, along with their 1/43 counterparts for use with 28mm figures in modern/near future skirmish games.

Anyway, being so busy burrowing through this pile of junk has been the reason I've not been able to post this last week or so, but hopefully normal service will be resumed shortly. Among the upcoming topics...
  • What to do for Solo Wargaming Appreciation Month
  • The new steam tanks from Black Pyramid (short version - they've arrived and look great!)
  • More VBCW musings (and how great the guys at Solway are)
  • How I've taken up Scott's suggestions for my painting table
  • The next big GASLIGHT game
  • What to do with those plastic wedding carriage party favours.
All of which I'm itching to waffle about.

And only an hour for lunch.


  1. Its the curse of being a wargamer, we are lead and plastic magpies! Oooooh shiny, I like that... Too many periods and scales, and rarely enough time for it all to come to fruition, or friends and gaming partners come and go, and periods that were all go, suddenly get put on back burner or cancelled.... but you hang on to all these bits and bobs, thinking one day "I'll get back into it..."
    Sometimes you just have to be ruthless, realistic, and have a clear out!
    My major one came about 6 years ago when I emigrated, but since then the accummulation has started again and continues to this day, with occasional outbursts thrown at trademe & ebay... ;-)

  2. I tried to tackle the lead mountain in the summer hols but never got the job done.I think Scott is write though...

  3. I think Scott's right too.

    As a matter of fact, one of the helpful mental strategies I've seen recommended for uncluttering is "pretend you're emigrating and have to only take what you can afford to ship internationally"

    I'm definitely going to be giving eBay a go, starting with two crates of RPG hardbacks. If they go OK I might try it on the "failed project lead mountain" as well.