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I have cancelled my DSL. However, the lady told me it would still be on through Tuesday, though I'm not paying right now.

I feel very strange about this. I don't mean to sound overly dramatic, but I feel like a part of me is dying. The online entity known at various times as Kevynwight, Entropica, and Nepenthe will cease to exist.

I've been furiously saving all kinds of things to my hard drive. Over 400 Megs just today and over a Gig so far. I know, I'll have access at the school, at friends' places, and at my brother's. But we all know that's not the same. DSL has been absolutely wonderful for the most part, and it's normal to be assailed by doubts, but this is the right thing to do right now, for me.

I can't help feeling extremely nostalgic about the last 14 months. The net has been here, in my home, right in front of me, this shining, super beacon of information and entertainment and a kind of supplement for all corners and aspects of my mind, for well over a year--and that is being snuffed out.

I have already extricated myself from PuF, by a method both a little depressing and incredibly funny. There are, to say the least, some REALLY great people on there and some good friends. People I've known for 11 months or more. People who've challenged me, helped me, enlightened me, and been real to me. OShadowO, SimplyCosmic, ZenPirate, Kaz, A_Huge_Sweaty_Baboon, Ruffryder, Skummy, Boogey, Swarthy Foreskin, PsychoMoggieBagpus, kamikaze, XxBonesxX, Pah-Wraith, creatoR, Moydoy, Big Gib, SamD, Wolf Blackstar, Boom, hal, 8-4-7-2, Lizard of Oz, Jing, Cleaner, Prophetus, Swedix, illa5thdynamite, Revenant, Robo-Junkie, Ultron, JuiceEggsMcKenna, Allison, Sapphire Nights, LordKhaine, LiquiD_SiN, CHRYSt, Morety, GunnerX, Mellow Bee, IB Bangin, I AM SKULLface, el Gato, BillyBadAss, mute, Darkreaper, Gameorz, Xadhoom, Nightmare, Aruzinsky, SU3000, No Soup For You, Morgan, Shock6822, LordofthePings, WiLd2, BunnyPanda, Phoenix, Kokensu, Kukuman, Divided Sky, My Oozing Eye, Clayethe, Cleaner, Rooster, desperado, Vortex, Inflictor, Mazza, D-Stroya, oreca, Yellow5, Goshen, D66, darklite, beerbaron, walkingman, Kray, Raptor, Selerox, Fomhoire, Dopefish, gramps, 3s, namu, Maest, hobart paving, Danger_Dude, sirus, Roli, Jolt1r, AI, Surebrec, PineConeBoy, Thrakhath, lunchblaze, deweyrawk, MRHYDE, Deathwing, Rev X, Stillborn, Max, mouthofboron, (BoD)duo, and many others. Of course, there have also been the DragonAsh, Troll, war-ped, DeeperShade, TWD, chundah, Tarquin, Ineff, etc. kind of people, but they can't all be great...

It's been a great ride on PuF, one of the best online communities in the world. Whether discussing aimbots, hammerjumps, and xloc binds, or politics, relationships, and computers, or any of a thousand other topics, the place and the people have always entertained me, challenged me, informed me, and given me a home on the net. PuF really is home, the familiarity breeding warmth and belonging.

One thing I regret not having time to do is bolster my UT collection--maps, skins, models, voicepacks, demos, mods, mutators, etc. I've gotten alot of other bits the last few days, but I simply don't have time to get everything I need for UT. So, I'm going to bring the Zip Drive to my brother's one of these weekends and load up on what I've missed the last 5 months in the UT community. I want to keep my UT collection. Doom is damn fun to play still, and UT is without any question the best game ever made (until Unreal2).

But... I was watching Extended Play on TechTV a couple weeks ago, and my eyes nearly popped out watching the video of some of the new PC, GameCube, PS2, and X-Box games coming down the pipe. And here I am with a slow-ass computer, no net access, no TV, and no money. The next generation of games will be something I'll totally miss out on.

I have changed my major. I am a Business major now. BCIS--Business Computer Information Systems, to be exact. I had a very encouraging discussion with a counselor at UNT, a couple good emails, and a couple great threads on a couple message boards. The Career Opportunities Center at UNT is a wonderful place, with awesome resources, and is an office I will be spending much time in. Key words: CAREER OPPORTUNITIES.

This is the final diary entry, by the way. I will leave this diary intact. At some point, it will dissappear, I'm sure, and that's why everything is saved to my hard drive.

Now, some history, for posterity...

It's been a great ride. I got my DSL running in mid April after suffering with various dial-up providers including the dreaded AOL. I wasn't a newbie online, but I'd never had the chance to become a net denizen, either. The first night of my DSL was somethin else...

I started out on MaxCommPort "A Delphi Forum" (please click here and here to see my first two posts (hilarious thread that hooked me like no other and happened in RealTime right before my eyes), actually made when I still had dial-up, but close enough--of course I'd used email for a while, used to use the newsgroups back in the day, had posted to Firingsquad and Ars and Anandtech... but those weren't the same thing). I learned a hell of a lot in a short time about computers and hardware and software and met some nice people. I started taking part in other discussions as well, politics, lifestyles, ethical questions.

At the same time, I was beginning to sharpen my UT skills. I was making a name for myself as Entropica and EtaoinShrdlu. I was learning the ins and outs of every popular map, how to use every weapon effectively, how to dodge, how to confuse the opponent, how to bind effectively, etc. I had some truly stunning games in that first few months with UT (I'd been playing for a while before, just not at home on fast DSL).

I began to get recruitment offers from a couple of clans. {KS} seemed like a group of nice people, so I tried out. It was intimidating, but I had talent (if not experience), and I impressed them and made it in. I had quit MaxCommPort and was now concentrating on UT, the {KS} website, and PlanetUnreal and its various hydra-like necks and its forums.

I became a {KS} clan machine. I was quickly promoted to War Arranger (equal in rank to Spectre_I., who was Webmaster and Sir_Robin, who owned our server, and just below ALBINOBOY and KiNgDOM). I spent most of my days involved with some aspect of the clan or UT. I used ICQ to talk with other players all over the world. I spent hours each day honing my skills. I did graphics for the site. I spectated famous DOM players like Domino, Hyperion, BeRT, and Rhakka. I studied the rules on ClanBase and ProvingGrounds. I was our diplomat and our PR man. I devised many of our strategies. I was lead recruiter (my recruits included WarHammer and Mrukk, two of {KS}'s best ever players). I had about a hundred other jobs.

It was a blast! Our first match against |TuF| is still one of the greatest moments of my online experience. I'll never forget it!! I had a lot of great times with {KS}. And alot of their later success can be traced to Entropica.

But, like most good things, my stint in {KS} ended rather abruptly. I uninstalled the game and stayed away from PuF for a few days. Only a few days. After that, I was back installing UT and getting it all up to date and all my binds and settings back, and I was reborn as Nepenthe (a word which means a substance, object, or idea which confers forgetfulness of sorrow, taken from a poem by Edgar Allen Poe). At first I played on the same servers I used to play on, without revealing who I was. That lead to offers from DRD and AA to tryout for their clans.

Around this time, the first solid version of Rocket Arena UT came out. There was a huge frenzy surrounding its release, and both of my brothers and I tried it out the second night it was out. It was great, tons of fun, and something totally new for me, since I'd basically been playing nothing but Domination for a long while. That night, we came up with the (BoD) tag and became a pseudo-clan. I was (BoD)nepenthe. When I started posting to PuF again, it wasn't long before KiNgDOM respectfully asked I change my name. So I started over there as well.

I tried out a number of different game types after that. I had fun with some wacky mods. I rediscovered the LoGrav server which is still up and still great, and on which I've logged the most hours by far. I found great fun in playing on The Roost, Gamespy, and Wizards of the Coast CTF.

duo and I had matches on the DM 2vs2 ladder. We practiced the hell out of the first two. That was some of the most fun. Meeting each night on my server to discuss all sorts of tactics, strategies, binds, commands, etc. Coming up with new ideas when before there were none. Talking on GameVoice...

And boy did it pay off, at least for a little while, as we romped over {KS} and {GD}. In fact, we embarrassed each of these competent teams. However, in the end, there just wasn't time to keep up the frantic pace of practice and matches, and when we played [X-Factor] (a new clan who, unbeknownst to me, had once been a part of arguably the best clan of the time), we didn't practice at all, and got run over. And that was the end of our light on that ladder. There were some others though, mostly with me as coach for duo, which I enjoyed maybe more than playing myself.

Meanwhile, I had shifted my focus on PuF away from the UT forum and on to the Off Topic forum. Off Topic is a place to discuss virtually ANYthing. And discuss we did! I can't express how much fun and enlightenment I had on PuF OT. It's the spiffiest place on the net!

At the same time, my interest in motorcycles was growing, and I became a part of first the CycleWorldForums and then, among others (the 454 site,, FZ1OA,, Road&, LABusas, etc.). Those places were fun and informative, but not close to PuF.

Also, sometime around last July I started this diary, encouraged by a couple friends here in Denton who have diaries of their own. It's been a very inconsistent diary, but I've had fun writing it, learned some things about some things, I've advertised it everywhere, I've gotten interesting feedback on it, and treated it as a great archive (Google is fantastic as a search engine for your diary) and depository for pictures, ideas, plans, experiences, etc. It's been self-indulgent in the extreme. And this last post is the most self-indulgent of them all.

This basically brings us to today. But if everything's so great, why am I getting rid of it? Ugh. Well, part is the money savings. Part is wanting to get away from things for a while, to go cold turkey and isolate myself, to see if I can go without the constant barrage of information. Part is needing time to do other things and being incapable right now of apportioning my time intelligently enough.

I can't forget stuff like using Napster to rape over 500 songs... designing my own website... using PaintShopPro7 to bust out all kinds of cool pics and graphics on PuF and other places... using ICQ to talk to multiple people ALL OVER THE WORLD at THE SAME TIME... irc chat in #pu... email... GameVoice... being immersed in the clan scene... downloading all kinds of game demos and movies... keeping up with technology and news and sports and games and motorcycles...

As far as UT... I've been playing quite a bit the last few days. God I luv that game, man. I feel like a hero when I'm jumping around between the top and bottom areas of Deck16 near the twin elevators, evading all attackers behind the boxes and walls, taking out 4 or 5 guys before things settle down... or ripping everyone apart on Homage to 7 on LoGrav, expertly managing the physics and the relics and each weapon... or scoring the final winning cap on Gamespy on Face after a long overtime period... or being the deciding factor in my team's win on Lament on Dreamscape... You just can't get these experiences any other way and it's something I will miss an AWFUL LOT. Obviously, UT has alot of life left in it, as the onslaught of new games including Tribes2 hasn't been as strong as thought. I'd dearly love to be a strong member of the U2 community... we'll see.

While I'm remembering UT, I can't forget things like Chaos, with the smart bombs jumping around and busting out one-liners... my friends like Ghostwalker, player_x, Spill|HV|, Coyote, duo, oreca (who was kind of like my apprentice/disciple for a while and will be missed), fragbert (who was the designer of FragBall), Rhakka, Skold, Mrukk, Merlin, bodkins, Domino, Slipp, TwoHardCore, and just too many to name... FragPU, the Friday night bi-weekly fragfest sponsored by PlanetUnreal... my fun attempts at mapping... listening to CD music like Cul-De-Sac or Tortoise during a game... my favorite maps visually: DM-Anubis, CTF-Noonraid, RA-DavidM2-3, and DOM-Olden... and my favorite maps gameplay-wise: CTF-Command, CTF-Eternal, CTF-Face, DM-Deck16, DM-Phobos, DM-Sands, DOM-Cinder, etc... my contributions to Total Domination and NoSmoke mutators... checking things out on ngStats, watching my progress, looking at that game where I Owned... my huge contribution and play-testing for Fragball (which, I'm sorry to say, will be released soon after a delay caused by fragbert having a son born and buying a new speedboat)... UnrealFortress... Strike Force... Excessive Overkill... U4E... the greatness of BHS and C... the elation of playing true clanmatches... and don't forget my biggest contribution to the community, my quote on the PG forums page....... (go here and scroll down to UT General--that's been up there since Christmas, which I find funny... it's cool to be on some random server as (BoD)nepenthe when somebody I've never met says "hey, aren't you the guy with that quote on provinggrounds?")... :o)

So, no more flame wars, like the last one about the penis-shaped peanut in my avatar (which I won big time over arch-nemesis DeeperShade), no more coming home to read the daily news briefs from firingsquad, motorcycle online, dailyradar, planetunreal, PuF, esportbike, CNN, mlb, nba, 454, diaries, and right around 20 others... no more online friends to meet and chat with and learn from... no more staying informed... no more UT... no more flipping open IE to look up anything my brain or heart desired...

So, what am I doing and what will I be doing? Oh, riding my bike, cleaning my apartment up, getting the FAFSA (my financial aid ticket) all squared away, hanging out at the Career Opportunities Center Library, visiting friends I've neglected in Denton, Irving, Plano, and Fort Worth, going to the UNT computer labs, trying to find a job, reading books I've been neglecting, sorting all this stuff out on my hard drive and zip disks, digesting the tons of info I've saved the last few days, shooting baskets, probably practicing UT against bots, finishing some emulated SNES games I've started, listening to music, searching for a job, lifting weights, reading magazines, playing guitar, looking for a job, drinking water, doing "offline" things, talking to more UNT counselors (they're free, they know alot, and they help me), signing up for classes, finding out what I need to do as a Business Major, woking out at the PEB gym, playing other games I've neglected... normal stuff, yannow? I see it this way: this is an experiment. If it works, great. If I just can't live without having email right there at hand, without knowing what's going on at all times, without having an immense group of online friends to be friends with and acquaintances to get info from, without being able to play a game against living people... then after two months I will reactivate my account. This will cost a LOT less money than the initial fees did, as I OWN the modem. In fact, over 2 months I should break even, and I will have accomplished at least a break from it all if not a clean, lasting break.

To some people, dare I say MOST people, this would not be a big thing, certainly not worthy of a multi-page diary entry, but that scarcely matters to me. It's my last entry too, ya know, so I thought I'd retrace my steps and tell why being online has been great for the last year. It hasn't been my whole life by alot, but my whole life isn't ending now, is it, only my online life. Although you might not know it from the way I write this diary, which is deliberately written in simplistic (non-flowery, non-technical) style and is somewhat stream of consciousness, I am a much more articulate and refined thinker and 'speaker' when I express my ideas through the written word, or in this case the typed word. So, I really am two different people.

I've been reading Otherland Book III a bit during the last week. In Otherland, of course, the "internet" has progressed to being an incredibly immersive zero-latency virtual environment which people actually DO live on in some ways. Much of society works online, socializes online, attends concerts online, shops online, and plays its games online. Some of them even sleep online, have sex online, read books online, whatever... It has become too hard to travel physically with the pollution, overpopulation, and cost, and geographic barriers are meaningless when nine tenths of the population has access to multiple-Gigabyte per second lines and virtually flawless VR equipment. Some even use bodysuits, neurocannulas, or gel immersion tanks. The point is that the net in that book has become much of what life is all about for a great deal of the population--without it they'd have little life left. I'm not sure I'd ever want to get to that point, but I can certainly conceive of the concept. I've done ONE MILLION AND ONE things online that would have been impossible without this wonderful web.

Regrets? Of course. I wish I hadn't taken UT quite as much for granted as I did. I wish I'd kept up with the mod and map scene this year. I wish I'd gone to more chatrooms than I did. There are a couple flamewars I regret (Spectre vs nepenthe, for instance), though there are many I don't regret for a second. I wish I'd paid more attention to Ars and Slashdot. I wish I'd figured out more html. I wish I'd had the time to join Rhakka in his UTN project (by the way, he's got that thing off the ground and they are doing EXTREMELY well, but then so is Domino's new clan, United Assassins; and Mrukk has joined |SC|... I knew these great people would land on their feet). I regret that I may not make it to the PuF Midwest LAN party now. I wish I had an extra 40 hours per day so I could suck in even more information on a million more topics...

Okay, well, what is there left to say? I can't think of anything right now. If you've read this far I'm impressed and I thank you for it.

Three pictures to end it. First is a classic picture I took a long time ago from a demo. I'm in blue. It was one of my finest games ever. It sums up my UT career well. The second is simply art which evokes massive dread and yet hope in me. The third is just your average FZ1 pic, two of em actually, color-altered from blue by me. When these are gone, you'll know my DSL has been disconnected because my webspace will be no more. And, as far as most of you are concerned, I will be no more.