December 16, 2008

Whirlwind (-6 Days)

Well, the day tracker seems a bit moot at this point, but I figured I should at least do one more before taking it off...

Sorry for the dearth of posts over the last week, so much has happened so quickly over that I'm just trying to keep up. Let's see, the last thing I did was defend my thesis...After that, I spent a reasonable amount of time fixing a few things in my DFS before I presented it on Tuesday. The presentation went well and I did well on the project so I was perfectly happy with that. From there, I stayed up late on Tuesday working with my team to prepare for our final Dissonance milestone which was last Wednesday afternoon. By the end of that night there was still a few more things we wanted to fix before final submission, so we also worked through Wednesday morning (and actually straight into our presentation) nailing the last few things down. The presentation went great, and overall I was very happy with how Dissonance turned out so I'd say the project was a huge success.

Wednesday evening after our presentation as I was sitting around our pit burning Dissonance DVDs, I got a call requesting an on-site interview on Friday. The company was very interested in getting me in before I flew back to Michigan for break, and I was equally excited to meet with them, so we set things up although it meant I had to miss our final exhibition. I had been a little under the weather the entire week so I decided to head home, rest, and relax for the remainder of the evening. Thursday, I spent the morning making the necessary edits to my thesis and submitted the hard copy with all my materials for final sign-off by my advisor and the rest of my defense committee. Then, still not feeling great I spent the rest of the day drinking lots water and juice in order to get better for my interview on Friday.

Friday morning I flew out to the company and had a host of different meetings with the some members of the team, including a brief discussion/test of my technical abilities and a review of the map I had submitted for my design test. After that, I got back on a plane and flew back to Texas to meet up with my brother and father who had flown out for my graduation the next day. We went out to dinner and I told them what I could about my experiences during the interview, and afterwards I pretty much went home to bed. Saturday was my graduation. I spent the morning just hanging out with Rick talking about games, and where I wanted to end up after graduation and all that. The graduation ceremony was fun and a very memorable hallmark on the end of my Guildhall career. I got to hear a lot of nice things about Dissonance and the exhibition, and I even got the chance to talk briefly with Ken Levine about my favorite boardgames, which was pretty cool.

Sunday, my family flew back to Michigan and I spent most of the day packing or just relaxing, still not quite realizing that the Guildhall was finally done. I distinctly recall sitting on my couch, feeling like there was something I should be doing or planning for, but nothing sprang to mind. That night I went out to Benihana with a few of my closest friends, which was a lot of fun, and one of my friend's parents actually picked up the check, which made things even better. Then, Monday morning I got one of the offers I had been waiting on (my first official offer) which was pretty exciting. I finished up my packing and flew back to Michigan for the beginning of my Winter break, and arrived at around 11:00 P.M. at my brother's house, where I will be living for the next few weeks.

Finally, today I slept in til about 11 AM then went out with Sharon (my sister in-law, not sure if I have referred to her by name here yet...) to pick up essentials and do my Christmas shopping. After that, I wrapped a few presents, then vegged out playing some Valkyria Chronicles on my brother's gigantic TV. When my brother got home from work we ordered a pizza and watched the most recent Chuck from yesterday and the rest of the movie Wanted (which we had briefly started the night before). I was expecting an offer today, but around 7:25 P.M. it seemed like it was unlikely to happen so I settled in for the movie. A few minutes later, my phone started ringing, and I got the other offer I had been waiting on. This offer was basically my dream job, the job I was pretty much aiming for from the start of my Guildhall career, so needless to say, I was incredibly excited, as were Rick and Sharon. The weather and time precluded us from going out tonight, but we are going out tomorrow to celebrate.

So there's basically everything you missed unless you are part of my immediate family. It's been a crazy week, and a lot has happened, but it's been amazing. I know I've said it before, but it's really remarkable how quickly things can change. I mean, 18 months ago, I had no chance at a job and really no idea of what I wanted, and now here I am. I know I've invested a lot of money and a lot of time in this so it didn't come without hardship, but I also feel as though my path has been blessed. The opportunities I've had, and how I've been able to take advantage of them, I feel, has been nothing short of miraculous. I don't want to pontificate on this point too much, as I am sure that there will be plenty of time for that, but I'm just...elated. I feel like for the first time in a long time, I can finally breathe, like I've finally found my direction. It's an amazing feeling, and I will certainly have more to say about it in the days to come (when I can actually reveal more specifically what the hell I am talking about). For now, let's just say...I couldn't be happier.


  1. Congratulations! It's been a long time coming, but you've earned it. Congrats on the job offer, too. I'm pretty sure I know what company it is. :)

    I'll try to poke my head onto XBL a few times in the next couple weeks. Maybe we can play Gears or Caracassone or something. It's been a while since we've played anything together.

  2. Congratulations, I'm so excited for you!

  3. Thanks guys!

    We should definitely get together and play something while I am home on break. Also, I'll be curious to find out who you think I am working for, I'll let it out in a day or two, but I'd be pretty interested in your guess. :)