Archive for June, 2010|Monthly archive page

Dear Xbox, I think these are adorable.

In dog, fashion and style, gaming, Product, relationship on June 30, 2010 at 9:30 am


The big sound of excitement came from the living room, where my husband had just started exploring the newest Xbox “accessories” for your Avatar:  fantasy pets.

“What?!!” (this is me)

I walk in to see… a gargoyle, a cyclops, a minotaur…

I have to say…very cute.  I mean, the fantasy pets (okay, my “big kid” husband too”). Kudos to the designers.  These are just the right balance between not-too-cutesy and a little bit edgy.

Now the question:  which one for my avatar?   More shopping for me.

Hope the dog doesn’t get jealous.  ;D


Ganesha Girl Likes Kid Games

In dog, family, gaming, movies, Product, relationship, travel on June 27, 2010 at 9:51 am

The other day I saw the promotion for the Toy Story 3 video game.

“OOO. Honey, can you get that for me?”  (I found myself saying this before the promotion was even over.)

Laughter from the husband.

“I love you!” (this is him – clearly my once-every-so-often interest in certain games makes him happy and helps us bond in his gamer world)

One day after I made this request, TS3, the game, is in my house.   Can’t wait.  We’re going to see the movie this afternoon before I dig in.

My Short “Kid Game” History:

I became one with the couch to master the Panda Quake in”Kung Fu Panda”  See post: A new decade.  Another day of Kung Fu Panda, Jan. 2010.

I delighted over the adorable interaction between Russell, Mr. Fredrickson and the ability to dig and swim as Doug in “Up”.

Fable 2 obsession was locked in because of my ability to travel all over the place with my dog… which I kind of do in real life anyway.  See:  Let’s Disco.  I have Inferno Level 5 and I got a dog.  A fable dog.

What’s My Deal With Major Nelson?

In dinner, family, Major Nelson, relationship, TV watching on June 25, 2010 at 5:22 am

I am making dinner.  Pasta Bolognese.  Richard’s favorite.   I am pairing it with a butter lettuce and radicchio salad with balsamic vinaigrette, as I am trying to get my husband to eat more in the vegetable category beyond tomatoes and potatoes.

“Oh, by the way…”  (this is him, from the living room)  “I saw Major Nelson today.”

I reduce the stovetop fan level for noise control and stop stirring the sauce with my slotted spoon.

“Wait a minute.  I have to hear this.” (this is me)   “What happened?”

“I saw him in the parking lot… I saw him the other day actually.  I asked him how he got started.”

“And..?”  This is normal.  Richard never gives the whole report.  I have to drag it out of him.

“I told him that you’re rarely star struck, but that when you saw him you were excited.”

“And what did he say?” (me again)

“He laughed.  He also told me he had something like 15 years in broadcast.”

Aha.  Major Nelson and I are brethren alumni of the broadcast world.  It makes sense now:  my spidey sense tingled with familiarity each time I saw him on Live.

I look him up on Wikipedia (I know, why didn’t I think of this before-duh).

Many more ahas later, I decide I need to pursue an interview with his wife. She is the perfect person to answer questions about being married to this culture of Xbox.

Together on Father’s Day.

In family, gaming, Product, relationship on June 20, 2010 at 6:00 pm

About four months ago, my husband lost his father suddenly in a car accident.

An unemotional family in most ways, the funeral and memorials were rightfully full of many tears, many hugs and open grieving.  In between, there were moments of silent strength; they tried to be there for one another as they always had, growing up in a rough neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York and relying on each other for protection, loyalty and friendship.

On this Father’s Day, in their own way, they made a plan to be together – not to revisit the pain or sorrow – but just to hang out.

Three brothers are separated by geography:  Austin, Seattle and Brooklyn.

As I write this, all three are on headsets in their respective homes, connected through Xbox Live and Gears of War 2, speaking only about sniper attacks and strategy.

Lost in the game, it’s the right kind of togetherness, at least for today.  And there is laughter.

Scoring in Bed (or, The Peggle Effect)

In dog, gaming, relationship, TV watching on June 19, 2010 at 12:07 am

The other night… I was just so tired.  No matter how “active” you are as a couple, sometimes you just need… to go… to bed. And sleep.  That’s it.

This is what happened.  I’m calling it “The Peggle Effect”.

I enter the bedroom, and Richard is on the Xbox.  (Yes, we have one there too, mostly for my need to veg-out and watch The Hills on Zune Video Marketplace or something.)   He doesn’t normally come up here and play games, because the screen is too small.  He is playing Peggle and doing really well.  Maybe it’s the supportive memory foam pillow.

I prepare for bed.   I get in bed.  He is still playing Peggle.    I am not one who can sleep with lots of noise and activity around me.

“Just put on your face mask and go to bed,” he says, lovingly.

I try.  I can hear the controller clicking.

“I can’t do it.  Can you go downstairs?  I am so tired, I just need to sleep.”  (this is me)

Pause. (both of us)

Sigh. (him)

“Just so you know, I was on the verge of breaking all kinds of Peggle records.  The fact that I’m turning it off shows you how much I love you.”

I am so tired I cannot respond.

I begin drifting…

The dog is already snoring by now.

I got sucked up into all things Microsoft this week. And I had a mini-social media meltdown.

In gaming, Product, relationship on June 15, 2010 at 9:00 pm

My usual, strong communication skills were compromised.

It was a big week, and I got our worlds confused.

For my husband, who’s been working covertly on the new Xbox 360 and Kinect (previously Project Natal) since I met him, announcements on his projects dropped this week.  His excitement had even manifested in the form of flirtation.   (See previous posting 6/14/10 – What’s in the Black Case?)

Also this week, I was immersed in Microsoft Windows 7  to moderate the general session of a Smart+Simple business conference.  Simultaneously, I was filtering Office 2010 discussion in my brain because of my friends…reporter and PR peeps working the angles on that product.

At tonight’s employee and family viewing of the Cirque de Soleil-imagined Kinect world (not at E3), it finally caught up to me.   As we stood in line waiting for food, I realized something awful had happened.

I got this week’s developments on Xbox, Cirque de Soleil, Kinect, E3, Office, Windows 7, and more… confused in my tweets, FB postings, emails, Linkedin comments and… and… omg I think I’ve committed an act of inaccuracy.  Maybe more than one.

“I am freaking out.  I think I made a mistake in my FB posting and a tweet.”  (this is me)

“It’s okay, honey.  Just delete it and write something else.”  (this is Richard)  Essentially, he was telling me to do a social media “do over”.

In the world of the trained journalist, this “do over” is called a “retraction”.

In the game world of Kinect, I’m not sure what “do overs” will be called.   I’m sure my husband fill me in when it’s time… or when Microsoft makes an announcement…which I will tweet/post…hopefully…correctly…the first time around.

What’s in the Black Case?

In interior decorating, Product, relationship, TV watching on June 14, 2010 at 7:00 pm

After watching an episode or two of “30 Rock”, my husband, the Xbox Sr. Product Planner, walks over to the dining room table, upon which sits a top secret-looking black briefcase.

“Check out the new —- I’ve been working on.  I have to do in-home beta testing on it.”  Then, in slow motion, he removes the —— from the case, places it carefully on the kitchen counter, in my full view as I load the dishwasher.   And I have to say, it is sleek.

“What do you think?”  My husband gazes at me with a little bit of a teasing look in his eyes.  He even wiggles his eyebrows a little, you know, in that cheesy way.   I cannot believe it, but my husband is using the new —– to flirt with me.

“What do you think?” (the husband again…)

“Actually, it’s really pretty, honey.”  (this is me)  I cannot believe I’m saying this about a new —–.

“That’s what I thought too.  You know what I like about it?  It matches the exact color of the **** and the **** .  I like it, because I knew you would like that.”  (this is him)

In a moment, I realize my husband has learned a lot since I met him.  No longer is the Todd McFarlane/Venom controller mounted over the fireplace (See Post:  “I said I do..” ), he is actually excited that a new product he’s working on matches the other stuff in our house, and he knows this will make me happy.

The —-… is the new Xbox 360.  And it goes nicely with the rest of my home.

(Note:  this was written several weeks ago.  Not postable… until the Xbox news was made public on Monday, June 14 in LA.  In traditional journalism, this was called an embargo.  I get embargoed in my own home these days…)