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Where to begin.. The story of taolurker.

This is the very complicated beginning of not only my gaming resume, but what my life history is. I apologize for the length of the document to any and all readers in advance. So…

It’s best to describe my “experience” not with a resume but with a story of me, the internet and gaming, with it’s relation to the real me (note this is the “blog” post never written) beneath the name I gave myself online, taolurker.

I’ve been playing video games throughout my entire life, from the first Arcade and home consoles at the age of 8 (still have my Atari 2600). In total that would equal nearly 38 years of having gaming as a, sort of, “outlet”. I not only played games though, but was in the first generation of computing and learned Apple 2 programming, plus.. a job doing data entry in High School. I can easily type (although now my failing body makes it painful + therapy) eventually even doing Journalism and writing as hobbies.

With the advent of internet dial up, I actually was part of early usenet and message forums for a long time. I also was active and ran my own email community group sometime during that first internet age. It also began a career of me moving into chat and discussion forums of all type. I also was a gamer this entire time, building my own computers; trying to do journalism on the side, and writing about games. I once sent mail that was published as a blurb to a Sega Genesis magazine and actually wrote some reviews to attempt getting “a name” or side money doing journalism.

By the time chat was becoming the norm online, was also when First Person shooter  (fps) games were moving into arenas in LANs and online. I did those, for fun with friends, first via local area network, and later onto internet rooms. After that time I also had a career in Dial Up technical support at two different places, a Computer Repairs and MCSE certification, plus becoming a chat moderator or doing chat + forums for companies that employed me. Ironically one company I worked at had their own Unreal Tournament servers in house, as well as a Tekken Playstation 1 tournament I won.. The last console I bought was a Playstation 2, and since then have mostly PC gamed.

I’ve  gamed the entire life span of Massively Multiplayer Online (MMO) games, and was an active lurker of nearly all of their forums. The first online games I eagerly lurked discussion forums and was annoying (or lurking) early rant-site blog pioneers like LumTheMad and DrTwister. I wrote articles and quite a few massive walls of text for MMOs, while doing dial up tech support, doing Everquest or MMO betas at night.

During this period of the Everquest 1 “forums”, I was one of the initial posters that proposed Role Play only servers, before they closed the Everquest 1 General discussion forums (2001). I also rewrote a companies Internal Database, and did training classes too. The games were a creative outlet of explosive comedy chats with emotes. Massive tomes of what could’ve been novel after novel lost to the ether in the name of enjoying gaming.. LOL but the comedy was worth it for me.

/me ruffles around in YOUR pocket.

I had 4 years of that lifestyle before 911, and soon after then I was laid off, forced to actually work for a living doing back breaking work (which literally disabled me). Running a cash register (head cashier), to stocking shelves (Asst. Dept Manager) or then Delivering mail, I still did nearly every MMO in its early beta (never World of Warcraft tho), diligently filling out bug reports when off work busting my ass (and losing weight). Drifting in and out of officer in numerous guilds also naturally happened, in  MANY different MMO games, and I helped more than one with community forums, or resources.

I’d also begun writing articles for a forum that was later “networked” and published numerous MMO “articles” under this moniker “taolurker”. I also had written anonymously under other pseudonyms in small doses as well. It was around then I cycled through moderator of 13 online forums. This was also around the time of Star Wars Galaxies launch, throughout its lifespan,  which was also a game I’d  written at length about (and IN IT as chat as my characters). I also was leader of a guild throughout the final years of SWG, right till the NGE.

The evolving of the genre of MMOs has continued, yet sadly since I had a constant struggle financially, I moved more into single player with watching MMOs or beta testing for them than actually playing. The last money I spent on an MMO was the money for Pirates of the Burning Sea (plus being burned again by SOE), and since then have only exclusively spent my “currency” as donating walls of text for the betterment of all players (on forums or bug reports). It’s also a sign that I’m pretty jaded, yet still love the genre so much  that I give my years of gaming and technical support in the only way I’m able.. since I can’t spend money. In the past five years I’ve bought 1 game per year, but played many consoles with friends or demo’d & beta/alpha tested, as well as lurking the internet almost too effectively about all sorts of video games. I went back into technology as a CS/technical support person and was doing a side business as Karaoke Deejay (losing money) when I destroyed my back. So, with my bi-polar diagnosis and UN-diagnosed gluten intolerance, destroying my skeletal system for years; I became disabled.

I still continue to play games and submit my opinions to the ether, but since becoming disabled I’ve also grown more and more at peace with me just being here typing things that disappear because of the impermanence of everything. It’s also been a release to type things (somewhat rebel-ing against this taoist impermanence) but as my way of contributing something.  Venting into documents also has been a method of centering myself to continue forward after every daily, pain, test or adversity. But, in the end does this give me validation? Or more indication of it’s wild Karmic spinning (yin yang) that I’m perpetually caught in? I dunno, I’ll just shoot this next raider camp in Fallout 4, then I’ll let you know.

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