A quick update….

Hey guys, sorry I basically dropped off the face of the planet. I’ve been …tired.

A few things happened – as you (probably) know, through 2019 and especially the latter half, I was becoming more and more stressed and overwhelmed in general (mostly due to agency bullshit around looking after my dad), and work, and so needing to do round-ups, well, the extra pressure didn’t help. Also, becoming more socially isolated as some regular friends seemed to drop off the face of the planet and never returned calls. Still, even as I stopped posting, I was still managing to get some painting done, though I was too burnt out to photograph, write posts and all that.

At the end of the year, the day before the anniversary of my mother’s death 2 years ago, Marouda and I took my dad out to a (pre) Christmas lunch. Not because of the proximity to Mum’s passing, but because he didn;t get to go to a different Christmas lunch, so we were making it up to him in a way – As we were leaving, Marouda got a mis-text from a “friend” who I paint kits for having a big old complain that I was taking a long time for this one kit he wanted done, even though I’d spent at least 2 12-hour Saturdays just weeks before with his (adult) son painting his kits together – a mix of doing stuff and mentoring on how to do other stuff. There was even the word “fucking” in there.

So I rang him, and basically gave him both barrels a number of times. I also used fucking as pretty much every second word. It felt fucking good, as well.

Then I didn’t paint again, until a couple of half-arsed scenery sessions in Jan/Feb, and that’s pretty much where I am now as far as painting goes. I’ve been playing World of Warcraft instead, because it takes less effort and occupies my brain in a way that painting doesn’t. Painting works as a zen thing, and I can listen to music or podcasts and think. WoW is constant problem-solving, so that occupies my mind in a much fuller and “immersive” way.

Then the fires hit. I’m in Melbourne, so I wasn’t directly affected, though it was weird seeing the smoke haze so heavy across the summer, and seeing things like Gyms and pools close. Still, seeing people pull together was heartening, and things like Vic Minis’ bushfire relief appeal was something that was able to bring a smile to my face.

Those friends I mentioned before? I even called them in early Feb to try to figure out what was going on, but basically got deflected and again, they never called back. Still don’t know what the deal is there, but whateverthefuck at this point. If people want to be like that, and I mean so little to them that they can’t initiate a call or even return a call over the span of months – then I’m essentially left with picking from two choices – either keep calling people who don’t call back or bother to call us at all which to my mind basically just morphs into crawling/begging – or essentially saying fuck ’em – and writing them off.

It’s not a hard choice. It’s basically been made for me. No prizes for guessing the correct one.

But now there’s something even more important than my butthurt feelings. COVID-19. While Marouda and I aren’t old enough that we’re in the danger zone, and we’re pretty healthy after a year of regular gym and healthy eating (not that anything is a guarantee), my father is in a whole lot of the high-risk categories. Over-70, diabetes, heart issues, emphysema, history of strokes and a couple of mini-heart attacks. If he gets it, he’s fucked. He’s really only got us to care for him, and naturally I’m in a job that exposes me to sick people all too often, and one that the Government seems to have no intention to allow remote work anytime soon. So I need to try to isolate him as much as possible (no more catching the fucking bus to the fucking supermarket, dad!) and also supply him with food, water and companionship. While working in a petri dish.

Hoo fucking ray.

So like I said. World of Warcraft>Painting for me right now.

Oh, and the fridge died today. Had to rush to get a replacement and got super lucky to have a guy willing to deliver it same day (on a Sunday afternoon) for an extra $50 cash. Replacing it wiped out our cash on hand though – but I guess it’s better than having it die in a month when the country is much further in the shit and things like whitegoods are no longer readily available.

Stay safe guys, and look after your vulnerable ones as well. I’ll still read and/or comment from time to time, but I don’t know if I’ll be painting much in the next while – hopefully I’ll see you on the other side of this.

Yong Out!

57 thoughts on “A quick update….

  1. Hey Aza, I’ve been thinking of you during your absence, and I feel confident that other bloggers have been too.

    Adult friendships are definitely hard to maintain. Over the past 10 years I’ve come to institute a ‘2 tries’ policy, where I will make 2 attempts to get inc touch with or meet up with a friend, but if it falls through or there’s no response, the ball is in their court. Sucks sometimes, but it’s better to spend time with people willing to make time for you, and also to respond to those who reach out.

    I hope 2020 is a better year for us all.

    Liked by 8 people

    • Thanks Dave. That’s pretty much where I got to. It’s a shame, but it is what it is, and it’s on them. Not that it would matter right now with social distancing and all that. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Good to hear from you mate. Sorry to read about the various bits and bobs going off in your life. I’ve never known a year like the start of this one but I will spare you my own troubles or before we know it we will be doing our own version of Monty Python’s Four Yorkshire Men sketch (look it up on YouTube if you are too young!). Right now if it wasn’t for modelling and blogging I would be suicidal. I know Melbourne is a big place but can’t help but feel you should get together with IRO and Pat, reckon the three of you could have a right laugh. Hey I might even come over and join you when all the shit dies down.

    Life is stressful at the best of times so do what you can to take it easy and do what pleases. The nice thing about the blog and the guys and girls in our little community is you can just dip in and out as the mood grabs you.

    Stay cool.

    Liked by 8 people

    • I’ve seen that one before (though I did have to google it – the Pythons did a lot of work!) though I know how you feel. I’m using the old online & video gaming panacea to fill that spot right now.
      I think Pat is right on the other side, and IRO just moved out to the sticks. Besides, I’m in a job that refuses to shut down and work remotely (even though it’s doable in large part), and also as a bonus has us in close contact with many people all of the time. Many of whom are often sick. Hopefully we’ll be shuttered inside the next week.
      Then I’d be ok to bunker down and de-stress for a bit, except I’ll still have to worry about my idiot dad refusing to stop taking the bus to go shopping…
      No cup, indeed!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Glad you checked in mate, there’s been an Azazel shaped hole in my wordpress reader!

    It’s times like this when you find out who your friends really are; you did your best, don’t spend your time chasing after people.

    Same boat here, Dad in high-risk category. He’s taken himself off to his leisure home in the middle of nowhere, probably for the best until it all blows over.

    Let’s hope things get better… we may need all the help we can get!

    Liked by 8 people

    • Thanks mate, and don’t worry – I’m not. Dave’s scenario abovbe is pretty much how it played out and how I’ve left it. As I said, wouldn’t matter anymore anyway! At least your dad has taken off, so that’s a good thing as far as the COVID-19 aspect goes. It’ll be interesting to look back on 2020-21 in 5 or 10 years for those of us still around.

      Overly-capitalistic, ostrich-minded governments around the world are surely going to have to do a bit more in terms of looking after their populations and preparing for the next one of these. …you’d hope?

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  4. I’m sorry to hear that things are stressful for you. Any time spent on hobby or gaming should reduce stress in my view, rather than add to it. Glad that you found solace in video games where wargaming currently doesn’t do the trick. My painting progress is very slow right now but I am chipping away and it keeps me satisfied. I haven’t really been able to get into high concept video games for a long while now, just enjoying Mario Kart online with its simple yet infuriating pleasures recently. Wishing you all the best and see you on the other side!

    Liked by 5 people

    • Thanks mate. Wargaming would be good, except the War Room has just become a junk storertoom over the past 6 months and I’ve been too tired to clear it out.. and now that’s the last thing on my mind. If we eventually get to workl from home, I might spend some time trying to clear it out and actually do some gaming with Marouda, as I won’t be seeing a whole lot of others socially for the duration of the apocalypse!
      I haven’t really played much Switch Mario Kart, though I expect latency between us might be a bit much to bear!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I’ve been waiting for this post, buddy. Great to hear from you and I appreciate that you chose to unburden yourself here, even though you were under no obligation to do so. I do hope that blogging doesn’t contribute unduly to the stresses in your life. It should be a relief, not a cause. I hope you have some time to do a little bit of browsing and reading of the community here. It might be just the thing to keep you engaged so that you can ease back into painting when the time is right. Until then, carry on!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Cheers, Patrick. I’ve been feeling like I owed the community a “what’s up” for awhile over summer, but then I got distracted from doing so when Corona started to hit, and other things became more important (as well as playing WoW to get my mind off it). I’ve been dipping in and out of people’s blogs, but there are so many to read – and the time it takes to keep up with them all! (even moreso when I comment!)
      Maybe/hopefully when we inevitably get shut down I’ll get some painting done again….

      Like

  6. Great to hear from you, as had wondered how the fires had affected you, great to hear it didn’t have too much effect on you.
    As for fair weather friends, who only seem to be there when they need or want something, we can all do with out, better off with one or two true friends who will always be there regardless.
    As for the painting, if your not enjoying it at the moment but the WOW is helping then that’s what you need to do for you, we’ll still be here when your ready mate

    Liked by 3 people

    • Good to hear from you mate ,sometimes it good for the soul to give someone both barrels but I wouldn’t waste ammo on folk that don’t communicate with you give no plausible reason . Keep your dad safe as well as your other family , hopefully it will pass over sooner than we think .

      Liked by 4 people

      • Hey Pat. All good there as I’m done with both now. Hopefully he stays home a lot more and starts thinking before acting. I know isolation and boredom are going to be an issue for him as his only real hobbies are the garden (hard when it starts to rain) and going out to the shops. A shame he never got interested in a manly hobby like painting toy soliders, amirite?

        Liked by 1 person

      • One thing mate , I bet he is proud that he raised a great son that is so caring ,And yeah my old man had the same hobbies so can understand how it is but knowing you mate you will both get through this shit . I work in the b dental industry and we have all the stuff everyone suddenly wants , I’ve never realised how greedy and selfish my fellowAussie is when faced with a dilemma I have to make these shit discussions on who get what and who needs it the most and all the time dealing with fucking racketeers , crazy’s mate and when this shit is all over they will be the deniers , just like you can’t find a spitter from the Nam war ! Keep your chin up mate you know team madden lets is with you mate . Rgds Pat

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    • Thanks Dave. The funny(!) thing is that the fires are still burning in large parts of the state. They’re just kinda forgotten now (except by thoise boor buggers who live out that way, and the fireys still working their guts out).
      http://emergency.vic.gov.au/respond/#
      As for the friends, the biggest shame is that they were anything *but* fairweather friends, and I’d known them since high school and been fairly close for well over a decade. Perhaps we were just not needy *enough*, but c’est la vie.
      I might paint again in a bit. I’ve been thinking about it a little, and there’s some shit I want off my desk. Marouda was talking about Gaslands stuff the other day, but we’ll need to clean up the War Room as it’s just a damned mess of boxes and random junk still.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Bro i have also just come back from potentially my last day of work until 6 April, thank you Corona…

    I must say i am glad to read you are back(in a way). And that life takes priority over WordPress always. An update like this is all thats needed to clear the air and to let us know you are oke. We aint going anywhere. And if its friends you want, you can always drop a text.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Thanks mate. I’m thinking of setting up some sort of online gaming hub for those of us in this little community who are interested. I know some people don’t have the interest or hardware, but I’m sure we can get a few connecitons going at least.

      Liked by 1 person

      • I just joined twitch to see how other people are playing and enjoying the new Doom. Apart from that i can only game from my phone. Currently playing a Dota clone called Mobile Legends

        Liked by 1 person

      • I haven’t picked it up yet. Still need to finish the 2016 one which I didn’t really love as much as everyone else seemed to, so I’m in no rush. A lot of people seem to really love it though, which is cool.

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  8. Hey mate, it’s great to hear from you. It’s certainly a frightening time in the world right now, I hope that you manage to stay safe and do whatever it is that helps you get through it. Take care of your family and make sure to take care of yourself as well. All the best

    Liked by 3 people

    • Cheers Steve. It really is like living in a bad movie. Then you do something immersive that distracts you for awhile, or go to sleep, then *BAM* reality hits with an almighty “what the actual fuck?”
      We’re certainly living in a historical time. Let’s just hope as many of us as possibly live *through* it…

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Good to hear from you Azazel! Sounds like quality of life has been approximately on the level of a typical RAW episode. Hope things turn out for the better, and have fun in Azeroth!

    Liked by 6 people

    • It’s been average, Mikko. Of course, we don’t have COVID-19 nearly as bad as others in the world (yet?), so that’s something to be grateful for. For the time being. Speaking of RAW, the whole world seems to have fallen into a situation that makes about as much sense as one of Vince’s scripts!
      …and who knew that Germophobe/Bane Dean Ambrose had it right?

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I’m glad you check in. I know what you mean about people, who suddenly for whatever reason decide to cut you out of their lives for no apparent reason or for silly reasons. At least you’ll know they are acquaintances and not friends. I’ve found over the years that I have a lot of acquaintances that span the range of people I used to know to people I like to do stuff like gaming with, but very few friends. The ones who prove themselves true friends over time, I do my best to be a good friend in return for their are rarer than mystic hen’s teeth, guilded with faerie’s gold, from the plane of imagination.

    Glad you are finding an outlet with WoW.

    Liked by 6 people

    • Thanks Ann. The real disappointment was seeing a couple of them in the latter category fade into the former. I’m still pissed off of course, but not too worried overall. Humans adapt well, after all!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Sorry to hear about all of the things going on with you, particularly around people you thought were friends. I think it is very difficult to find good friends you can rely on but it is never good to see friendship dissolve in that way. I can also see how that would make you want to paint less since you’re friends are connected to this hobby. A little painting break is probably for the best considering those circumstances.

    I would say do not feel obligated to update your website or do round-up posts. The Bitz Box is yours and you should do whatever you enjoy most with it! That is the joy of having your own website. I hope WoW helps keep you sane and also that you and your family stay safe!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Thanks Kuribo. The disappearers are not closely tied to minis, and the guy I paint(ed) for is a monster model kit guy, so neither are closely tied to mins, though the kit guy does relate to painting. Between that and upkeep of the blog and constant goals/challenges/round-ups slowly morphed from motivation to more work and pressure. So something eventually had to give, and it was me!
      Stay safe mate, and keep on painting those Middle-Earthians!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Makes total sense, mate. As someone who spends way too much time thinking about his website and how I can make it be as successful as possible, I would really consider not working on those features as they seem like they are quite a bit of work and hard to maintain. I struggle doing much other than WIP updates on my website some weeks but I still find them to be the most fun to write so I can’t imagine the amount of work it required to keep up with the challenges. Not only that but you were doing them monthly so the time and effort they demanded never went down. Just my two cents though!

        I hope you stay safe as well and I will look forward to seeing your painted work when you feel ready to come back 🙂

        Like

    • Yeah. Ultimately I need the needy and incompetent people to fuck off and leave me alone for awhile. No chance of that for the time being, though – as even from social isolation I’m going to have to do a lot of babysitting for people who can’t figure out simple shit for themselves.

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  12. Computer games are an easy time suck vs settling in to paint I find. Especially during trying times. Sorry to hear about the shitty breakdown in friendships. Corona virus is looking pretty harrowing and I suspect there’s a lot of us in a similar situation with having fairly low risk personally, but with very susceptible family members. Hoping that some good news emerges soon as it seems fairly unremittingly crappy right now.

    Liked by 4 people

  13. Glad you’ve checked in mate – I was thinking of you just the other day & wondering how you were. It’s a rough old time, but hang in there dude – this too shall pass.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Echoing what others have said, just glad to see any posts. Not to make light of your situation, but I lost my father 2 years ago and it definitely set back my gaming and painting and creativity, and it still does when the anniversary of his death comes around. I think it’s only human to feel that way.
    As to adult friends, I have lost more as the years pass, not sure if it’s a function of the normal human condition or just the fallout from “social media” connectivity. Either way, solider on, dude!

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Glad to hear from you, and that you’re mostly okay. I’ve been out for nearly a year, and just starting to get back, check out people’s sites.

    Oh yea, I heard about this thing called “Contrast” paints. Guess what, we don’t have to do washes and highlights anymore! It’s magic! (when have you heard that before?)

    Seriously though, glad you’re okay and hope your family stays healthy. I can’t imagine you will stay away from painting forever, but keep in touch either way. We marvel at the painting, but it’s the person behind the brush that we’re actually Following.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Wishing you the best, its a tough time for all and you are having more that your share of challenges. Back in the 70’s (at least according to the legend I heard at school) Richard Nixon visited the Corps of Cadets and offered one succinct piece of advice: NEVER LET THE BASTARDS GET YOU DOWN! Now he’s not my favorite President by a long shot, but the advice is indeed apt.

    Good luck, and find peace however you like. You’re a big piece of our little community and we have your back.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Sorry to hear you’re still having a hard time. I understand the concern for your dad, mine is also in the at risk category due to numerous reasons but the stubborn old goat is refusing to self isolate.

    Like

  18. It’s good to hear from you again. I don’t want to use the comments section of a blog to go into any details about your personal life, so I’ll just say that if you feel it would help to chat with someone who is essentially a total stranger, please send me a message and we can arrange something. I can listen along with the best of them, and I’m not burdened by knowing any of your friends.

    I’m proud to be part of a community that has you in it.

    Good luck, stay safe and stay sane.

    Like

  19. I’ve been reading your blog from the shadows for years, I’d just like to wish you and your family well mate. No rush, we’ll be here when you’re ready again!

    Like

  20. First of all, let me say that I was really happy to see an update and to learn that you are still alive and kicking! It also sounds like you’ve had a rather rough year, and the current situation also doesn’t look as though you’ll be able to catch a break. I am keeping my fingers crossed for you, of course!

    The selfish part of me would, of course, love to see you return to painting and posting sooner rather than later. But if WoW is where it’s at now, then that is perfectly fine — go with whatever works for you in these trying times. And please stay safe and healthy! 🙂

    Greetings from Germany,
    KS

    Like

  21. I can feel you on more than a few the things you write. Interests change, sometimes for a limited time, sometimes they’re gone for good. Do what makes you smile, mate. Take care!

    Like

  22. Good to see you’re still out there, I don’t mind sounding like a suck-up and admitting that I really miss seeing your posts. That said, life is for enjoying and if WoW is fun and painting isn’t then for god’s sake play WoW and leave the miniatures alone for now – I shall struggle on manfully without my regular fix (although I hope you’re aware of how much I’m suffering here 😉 ).
    Oh and those guys sound like right nob-ends by the way, you’re better off without that kind of bullshit. Keep safe man 🙂

    Like

  23. Hey dude, glad to hear from you! I’m not going to say I know what you’re going through, but a lot of what you’re saying (bushfires excepted, thank goodness) sound very familiar. Much as we’re all glad to hear you’re okay, don’t feel you owe us any updates – look after yourself first (whatever form that takes!) and your family. You’ve already done loads for the wargaming blogosphere (happy to see other bloggers taking up the mantle of running regular challenges, too!), and iirc, when I first ventured into wargaming discussions on the internet years ago, you were one of the friendliest and most encouraging voices (or at least, you always had interesting things to say!). Take care, thanks, and enjoy your time gaming (whether tabletop or video games!).

    Like

  24. Great to see a post from you Aza, but sucks what your “supposed” friend did, I too would have “torn him a new one” as we say over here. Just seems to be one thing after another over the last twelve months, hopefully things will begin to calm down soon(ish).

    Till then all we can do is “Keep calm and carry on!”

    Cheers Roger.

    Love your cat btw, reminds me of one of mine!

    Like

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