I stumbled upon a new gamer in the Long Beach area through Pen and Paper Games dot com. The site helps GMs and Players find each other across a crowded room. Every week or so, someone about 40 miles away joins the site and I get an update saying, "someone near you wants to game" or whatever — if you're not from Los Angeles, 40 miles is NOT near me. 40 miles is always a 90-drive (with traffic), unless that 40 miles is on some circular, uninterrupted course.
One week ago, I got a notice that someone new was in the area. David lives within 2 miles of house, has a broken leg, and is bored out of his f***ing mind. Aaron (who lives within 200 yards of my house) and I decided to visit with said gamer at around 1pm today (January 10, 2009) to play some board games and get to know him. We played some Isle of Doctor Necreaux (a forthcoming AEG product), God's DIce (expect a review soon), Blokus 3-D, and Don (among my favorite bidding games ever).
At 530pm, we chose to take a break for dinner. David, hobbled out on his crutches (from Apartment 10) and we walked to the street. As we piled into the car, a voice rings out… "Hey… are you Unicorn fan?" [Refering of course to the L5R Clan on my clean t-shirt — disclaimer: I am not a Unicorn fan.]
Jim: "Oh. No. I work for the company." [Thinking in my head, why did I say that? What if he stabs me with a spoon?]
Man: Really? I used to play the CCG, but only the RPG now.
Jim: Oh. Yeah? Cool. I wrote the GM's Survival Guide. [Really? What the heck am I doing? Did I already forget about the spoon?]
Man: Cool. I love that book.
In short. All parties involved say hey, we're gamers and we're playing board games in Apartment 10. Hey. I'm Mike and I'm in Apartment 1. Jim turns to David… how did you not know this?
Everyone laughs at the series of coincidences (after all, I rarely wear gaming t-shirts).
It's about to get weirder.
Mike, the new guy, is from SLO (San Luis Obispo), Aaron's home town.
And he works in Aerospace… just like Aaron… and he doesn't have a gaming group.
How the… what? How? Someone…
12 hours ago, I didn't have a gaming group and now, I'm running into random gamers while getting into a car?
What the heck? Seriously? What the heck?
ASIDE: My old roommate, Mike, who I gamed with for seven years and have not talked with for four years, was texting me while I was gaming at David's apartment. Mike now lives 20 minutes away in Lomita, just across the bridge from Long Beach.