Average score:

No Time To Waste

In this month, we are faced with two massive projects nearing deadlines. The character adventure Gamer Mom, which we are creating in collaboration with Kyler Kelly, has a deadline of March 5th to be finished, and less than a third of it is complete. And the play The Tenth Man opens on the 19th, in which I have a starring role which is a significant departure from my previous performances, and am receiving very little direction. (There's no time for improving my performance when everyone else is doing so much worse.) Either of these tasks would be a challenge to excel at in what little time we have. To attempt both is ludicrous, and yet that is our aim for the month.

Only four characters will be called upon: the Addict, the Worker, the Person and the Programmer. These personalities have been selected because I believe they are capable of focusing on the tasks at hand and not wavering. It will be difficult for all four, each in his own way, but the projects are also guaranteed to prevent countless delights for those who take them seriously. We will begin the year with a daring display of reckless time management. Let no one doubt that we will pull it off.
First activity: Playing through what the current state of Gamer Mom a few times 0:04
This is the start of a new model of adventure game, the character adventure. A lot of people have been waiting for this game; they just don't know it yet.
Time allocation: Gamer Mom 9:21
Mundane activities 1:08
Working with Kyler was such a pleasure, I totally forgot it was a fast day. We stayed in contact via IM as we worked, so that if he didn't understand a certain node or if I didn't like something he had done it could be dealt with immediately. And as soon as he finished an image, I was able to immediately put it in the code so he could see how it worked in practice. And then while he worked on the next file, I'd look through the later nodes to see if the image he'd just completed could be reused in other places. Working together, we were racing through development: 127 nodes are ready to publish, and 168 nodes are fully-programmed and designed (but possibly lacking some art). I was (and am) very thankful to have someone as serious as Kyler on my side for this very important project.
Performance review:
Bravo! A word to whoever comes next: don't think that just because the Addict pulled this off, that your job is going to be easy. We have no time for characters who don't pull their weight.
First activity: Writing down a plan for my performance in Trial By Jury, so that I should not forget it 0:18
This will be a new type of challenge for me. Generally I deal with coding and logic; today I deal with resolving two contradictory interpretations of a fictional character. In a nutshell, the challenge is that he needs to be both disturbed and relatable. So I need to find moments in which I can reveal a hidden edge, while otherwise seeming fairly normal.
Time allocation: The Tenth Man 1:35
Mundane activities 1:31
Blog maintenance 0:11
Programming a backup script 0:07
What a clever little puzzle this was. You see, it was a trick question. I will explain. The nature of the character is understood to me, and it will come out in little details during the character's monologues and in other moments of stress. These details have been practiced and are being done consistently in the rehearsals. But those details are not going to make the character seem normal. And in fact, any plans at all which I can write down and perform on cue are not going to make the character relatable to the audience because the audience does not think of their lives as being staged. The way forward, is that little aphorism which Batsheva Garnett kept reciting back in 1776: "Don't act.". I can't come in thinking I know what I'm going to do, and preparing to do it and keeping it all straight in my head. The harder I work to convey the character to the audience like that, the less of an everyman he will be. The solution is to go against my nature and not plan, but instead listen to everyone else on stage, be as weary as Arthur Brooks is, and stop worrying. What will make the "hidden edge" effective is that in the rest of the performance I will be completely unassuming. So when I start acting, it will blow the audience away. They won't expect the amount of energy that I am putting into these monologues from this everyman of a character. It's perfect, and it requires little effort from me outside of the rehearsals, which will occupy many hours this month.

And with this tidy little answer, the Thinker's plan for the month is revealed to be misguided. The Addict, who is biased by definition, said he would need tens of hours to work on the play aside from the rehearsals. And the Thinker concluded that we would need to work on the game and the play in equal measure. But if I take the right attitude in the rehearsals -that I am Arthur Brooks observing the other characters' nonsense- then we will not need any extra time. So I would instead recommend that we focus on the game when at home, and focus on the play when away.
Performance review:
A short and apparently easy day, but an illuminating one nonetheless. Thank you, Programmer. We will of course continue this discussion in private.
First activity: Wasting time 1:11
19:41 - Gamer Mom
23:20 - fix up the conference room
00:30 - Practice lines for The Tenth Man
1:00 - Organize the "Spider-Island" comic book crossover
2:00 - Score.

Today is going to be perfect.
Time allocation: Gamer Mom 4:12
Mundane activities 1:40
The conference room 0:47
The Tenth Man 0:35
Kyler and I have Gamer Mom ready up to node 138.
I mostly finished the code that will allow us to view The Rules directly from the conference room. I would have finished, if I had not run into a glitch which I don't understand. (I'm hoping the Programmer will figure it out.)
I practiced the first half of the play.

I took a break in the middle of Gamer Mom of 41 minutes -I forget why. Then Kyler was willing to work, so I decided it was worth going late so that I could spend some more time on the game with him. When we reached a good stopping point, I rescheduled, cutting the conference room time in half and removing the comics. I regret none of these decisions except for the break. I honestly don't remember what that was about, so it may be an error in my timekeeping.
Performance review:
Not bad at all, despite the lazy attitude you started from. I agree that your decisions in revising the schedule were sensible. I am also impressed that you were willing to lose the comics.
First activity: Wasting time on the internet 1:25
Time allocation: The Tenth Man 6:11
Mundane activities 6:00
Hanging out with Moshe 4:39
Notes: Moshe came over, and we had a good time. We finished Uncharted 2, talked a lot, and I forced to watch a bit of Sherlock, which he didn't like at all. I showed him the conference room, which I'd told him about several times, but apparently he had misunderstood because he was under the impression it was going to be an artificial intelligence program where all my eight personalities would actually be programmed in. Sidestepping the fact that it needs to all be coming from myself to have value, artificial intelligence on that level (which can actually be engaging, rather than a gimmick) has never been invented by even the greatest minds of our generation. So I was taken aback when Moshe was disappointed - evidently he thinks I'm Willy Wonka. We parted ways so that I could head to my play rehearsal, which was an unmitigated disaster. I was standing on the side watching for some of it, and even those points where the actors were saying their lines at the right cues were not particularly entertaining. Maybe it will all turn around in the next few week, but I came home dejected. I then watched the latest Sherlock -or rather, I waited a few hours for the episode to be available and then to be downloaded, by which time it was too late according to the Rules to watch it and then I watched it anyway. Unfortunately, it was a bad episode.
Performance review:
I think you took advantage of whatever social opportunities you had. But then you kept going, without any social opportunities. You should have spoken to me, and I would have relieved you -but that is not your problem: I will have the Worker make the conference room inescapable for a few minutes, as was in the design for the program.
Notes: The day was not written down, and it wasn't really any particular attitude either. There was music played, there was the game The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, there was a play rehearsal (which was more successful than I expected); and I forget what else I did. There was no use of the conference room, which is how this happened. (So far its use has been voluntary rather than mandatory. This will be corrected.)
First activity: Cleaning up the Person's messes 0:19
First activity (after rehearsal): Making myself some tea uncounted
12:05 - Dentist's appointment (yes, again.)
1:30 - The Tenth Man, especially final monologue
4:00 - Add timer and signature to conference room
(Don't go to game night, there's not enough time.)
12:00 - write e-mail
1:30 - Comics
2:00 - score.

I'm not good enough, but today is going to be perfect.
Time allocation: The Tenth Man 2:20
Mundane activities 2:15
E-mail 2:09
Conference room 0:57
Dentist's appointment 0:44
Comics 0:37
Notes: The day was paused for a rehearsal, which took 6:46.
I went over the lines for the second half of the play.
I implemented the timer and lock-in for the conference room.
I wrote a lengthy e-mail.
I started organizing the "Spider-Island" comic book crossover.

I got home from the rehearsal later than expected, so the Thinker allowed me to reschedule past 3:00. This led to some wasted time, but it let me get everything done.
Performance review:
In retrospect, I should have said you should cut out the e-mail. It could have been done at a later time. Regardless, this is solid work.
First activity: Eating 0:15
First activity (after rehearsal): Eating 0:11
13:40 - practice The Tenth Man
15:15 - get ready to go to rehearsal; also prepare supper, to eat while:
15:30 - I work on Gamer Mom, with Kyler joining at 16:00.
17:30 - Rehearsal.
00:00 - More Gamer Mom
1:00 - new comics!
2:00 - score.

I'm not good enough, but today is going to be perfect.
Time allocation: Gamer Mom 3:34
The Tenth Man 1:34
Mundane activities 1:19
Comics 0:55
I reached node 179 of Gamer Mom in the coding, and Kyler reached 145 in the art.
I went over my lines in the entire play.
Notes: The day was paused for a rehearsal.
Performance review:
A simple and overwhelmingly competent day.
First activity: Practicing the final monologue 0:05
Today is a big day. I just got my hair cut for the part, and tonight we take photos. At some point in the next few hours I'll go to Jerusalem to help another actor go over his lines, and then tonight we're going to run through the whole play again. This is starting to feel event-y.
Time allocation: A rehearsal 5:16
Mundane activities 3:16
Going to Jerusalem early to help someone out with his lines 2:42
Reading comics 2:20
Going out to get money and a haircut 1:01
Practicing on my own 0:52
It's getting better. I have a good feeling about going on in a week.
Performance review:
Okay, this is absolutely great except for the comics, which no business being here. You should have either continued practicing on your own when you got back, or scored the day. I know the Worker was antsy to work on Gamer Mom last night, for instance. But otherwise, good focus and congratulations on a good rehearsal.
First activity: Cleaning up after the Addict 0:08
12:20 - Gamer Mom coding
14:20 - lunch
14:45 - the usual chores
15:00 - Prepare a blog post for next week
15:35 - TV
16:20 - Score.

I'm not good enough, but today is going to be perfect.
Time allocation: Gamer Mom 1:59
Mundane activities 1:18
TV 0:45
The blog 0:32
I reached node 185 of Gamer Mom, though I also discovered one earlier node which I had lettered improperly.
I had a discussion with the Explorer in which he laid out the details of the next post, and I added a comment section for it.
Performance review:
Not an ambitious plan, but the implementation was utterly flawless.
Time allocation: Music 4:39
Mundane activities 3:36
Performance review:
It's a real shame this wasn't managed properly, because actually there was quite a lot of good music here, and if you'd ended the day at midnight like I told you to it would have been at least a nine-pointer. But at least you'll stop complaining that I never give you any days now.
First activity (Sun.): Burning some comic book discs 0:43
First activity (Mon.): An early lunch 0:12
A lot is expected of me, and I am not going to disappoint.
Time allocation: The Tenth Man 14:00
Mundane activities 6:16
Piano 3:33
The blog 3:23
Notes: We had our first and only rehearsal in the theater space. It could have been worse, and it could have been better. I was adequate. I immediately went home afterward, recorded a not-very-good improvisation, and sent it out to the entire cast to make myself feel better.
Don't look at me.
Performance review:
Well, there's some interesting character material here. I'm not sure every opportunity was used to the fullest potential, but you did seize some opportunities and invent a few others.
First activity: Wasting oodles of time 2:10
14:35 - The blog ("The Tenth Man")
15:25 - The blog (Journey Into Mystery post)
17:00 - Get ready to go to the rehearsal
If I get back before 11:30, pop by game night.
0:30 - Watch Sherlock
2:00 - Score.

I'm not good enough, but today is going to be perfect.
Time allocation: The Tenth Man 5:42
The blog 3:05
TV 1:37
Mundane activities 1:35
Watching the last game of game night 0:23
I posted the outline of the Tenth Man post.
I wrote another page-and-a-half of the comics post.
Performance review:
Good work today.
First activity (Wed.): Improvising music inspired by the play 2:22
First activity (Thu.): Practicing the last scene 0:10
First activity (Fri.): Writing notes in the script 0:04
First activity (Sat.): Writing down bullet points of what still needed to be in the blog post 0:06
It's nearly showtime. The whole play falls apart if my perforamnce isn't up to snuff, and my performance tends to fall apart when other actors mess up their lines. I need to be able to be Arthur Brooks, on his intense emotional arc, regardless of whether I'm doing what I practiced or ad-libbing. So I need to remember the broad strokes of the performance:
  • In Act 1, stay annoyingly calm and controlled except for specific moments
  • In Act 2, start to show some genuine emotion, amidst the pretension.
  • In Act 3, break down but don't get shrieky.
If I can follow these guidelines no matter what happens, it'll be one heck of a show.
Time allocation: The Tenth Man 16:51
Mundane activities 7:06
Reading comics 4:46
The blog 3:29
Music inspired by the play 0:53
Well, it wasn't one heck of a show. But it was good enough, and my performance was as good as it could have been with no one out there backing me up. The next one will be better.
Performance review:
Congratulations on a solid opening night performance. The other problems are with other people, and you shouldn't let it get to you.
First activity: Reading blogs 0:32
Kyler will be waiting for the next bit of progress on Gamer Mom.
Time allocation: Talking with Moshe 4:38
Gamer Mom 1:31
Mundane activities 1:28
Moshe came over, and without doing much of anything we had a good time. Toward midnight when he had to leave, we walked to his house and played 20 Questions for an hour. Yes, literally. We're both awful at that game. :)
Notes: There was a dentist appointment (the last for a long time) between days, and there was no conference when I got back. As a result, the day was not started properly.
Performance review:
There are a few small mis-steps, but overall I think this is exactly the sort of sociable person we need you to be.
First activity: Lunch 0:13
14:15 - Gamer Mom
20:40 - Finish off the comics blog post
22:30 - Go over the play
0:00 - Comics
02:00 - score.

I'm not good enough, but today is going to be perfect.
Time allocation: Gamer Mom 5:47
Comics 2:36
Mundane activities 1:43
The blog 1:40
The Tenth Man 1:11
I reached node 216 in the coding of Gamer Mom.
I organized nearly half of the "Spider-Island" comic book crossover.
I wrote a page of the "Fear Itself" blog post. The post is not complete yet because it is longer than I anticipated.
I quickly ran through the play.
Performance review:
Not perfectly precise, but close enough.
First activity (Tue. night): Blogging about the play 0:21
First activity (Wed.): Play-related e-mail 0:05
First activity (Thu.): Posting to Google Plus 0:02
First activity (Fri.): Reading comics 1:02
Paddy Chayefsky wrote a wonderful play. People are paying good money to see that play. And I have the capability and determination to deliver as much of the brilliance of the play as I can manage. The other actors do not exist. The directors do not exist. All there is is Arthur Brooks and the audience, and they will enjoy the show.
Time allocation: The Tenth Man 16:13
Mundane activities 12:14
The blog 2:34
A conversation about the play 2:04
Reading comics 0:58
Notes: The 24th entirely consisted of activities which are allowed between days as "previously-scheduled social events", and I did not feel the need to declare a day. I probably should have, though, just to have a better attitude.
Performance review:
Extremely strong start, followed by a gradual decline in energy. You should have come to talk to us.
Time allocation: Mundane activities 10:28
The blog 4:29
Performance review:
Um... no. There were no social opportunities here, and this was way too long. Sorry.
First activity (Sun.): Checking whether Kyler was available on Monday 0:03
First activity (Mon.): Counting up the time spent on the play and the game in the performance reviews (It's not balanced.) 0:11
22:45 - Gamer Mom
00:45 - Finish the comics blog post
2:00 - sleep
First activity Mon.: count up the hours spent on the play and the game, this month
11:15 - comics (Finish editing Spider-Island)
13:00 sharp - score.

I'm not good enough, but today is going to be perfect.
Time allocation: Gamer Mom 2:10
Comics 1:52
The blog 1:18
Mundane activities 0:27
I reached node 224 in the coding of Gamer Mom.
I put together a decent collection of Spider-Island, and fixed one problematic scan contained in it.
I posted the Fear Itself blog post which I started two weeks ago.
Performance review:
First activity: Preparing to work with Kyler 0:35
Time allocation: Gamer Mom 9:36
Mundane activities 1:24
In order to get Gamer Mom released by March 5th, as it must, it must be my entire life. It's a good thing these few minutes are so deep that I could very easily live in them. I keep finding new parallels between the game and my life. And then Kyler flips it all upside down, turning it into something I did not anticipate. This game is going to blow the blogosphere away.
Notes: I blew off the Tenth Man cast party so that I could work with Kyler today. I do not regret this decision.
Performance review:
You forgot to give an opening statement, and I ought to take off a point for that, but this was such a strong day that I'm going to give you an extra point for playing your character so well. Stick around during February, buddy. We're gonna need you.