My 2015 Annual Birthday Greed List!

(NOTE: Based on time elapsed since the posting of this entry, the BS-o-meter calculates this is 4.824% likely to be something that Ferrett now regrets.)

The time has come for my Annual Greed List – the large (and, yes, uncut) list of things I desire for my birthday, on July 3rd, which is the most important day of the year. Why do I do this? If you’re really interested, here’s a brief history of the Greed List.
The briefer version, however, is that I think “What you want” is a reflection of “Who you are” at this moment – your music, your hobbies, your fandoms, who you are as a person.  I find it fascinating as a history, watching how what I’ve desired has mutated (the shifts away from physical objects are so bizarre, as I used to want tons of CDs and DVDs and now that’s mostly a computer file somewhere), and remembering what I thought I wanted so badly but turned out to be too much effort to turn into a hobby (fire poi), and the things I did want that became habit (the straight razor).
And while I guess I could just toss all this on an Amazon Wishlist and send you over, why bother?  I want you to know who I am in this moment, and so I not only list what I want, but explain why I want it.
So here it is.  Here’s who I am this year, expressed in what I want, in descending order of most-lust to least-lust.
You To Purchase Either Flex or its sequel The Flux ($7.99 or less).  
So hey! I’m a professional author now! So if you wanna make me happy, do the BUY MY BOK dance and either a) purchase Flex, if you haven’t already, which features videogamemancers and brainwashed government abduction squads and an amputee divorcee who makes magic with paperwork –
– or b) advance-purchase its the sequel, The Flux, which features the World’s Most Dangerous Eight-Year-Old Girl, an in-depth look at the business structure of Samaritan Mutual, and two very unlikely romances.
Either way, you’ll have a new book and I’ll be happy. And people seem to be digging Flex, so I think most of you will be content with your purchase.
A 70″ Television in Ultra 4K HD ($lots).  
“But wait, Ferrett!” you cry.  “Didn’t you purchase that television last week?”  Indeed we did.  That’s why this year’s Greed List is sparse; we spent all our dang money.  This is not only my birthday present, but also my Christmas present.
It is, in fact, a completely awesome television, though, and it finally lets me play games like Wolfenstein: New Order in a format large enough I can read the instructions.
I’M KILLING NAZIS, PEOPLE.
Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt, on PS4 ($59.99)
Here’s an interesting fact about me:
Videogames are my meditation.
I am too high-strung to stare at a wall and inhale incense: no, I have to be accomplishing something.  And Gini has noted that if I am accomplishing real-world stuff all the time, I get bitchy and short with her.  She has actually requested that I go buy a damn videogame, because then I’ll spend an entire weekend doing nothing but Beating The Game, and when I emerge I’ll have spent many long hours focused on one thing, all my neuroses falling away because I know I can beat this game.
The Witcher is getting good reviews, and it sounds like a Fallout-inspired hoot where I walk around in third-person killing things, and I love killing things in third person. I haven’t done that since Dragon Age.
Corner Gas: The Movie Blu-Ray ($16.99) 
If you’ve never seen Corner Gas, you’re missing out on one of the most sarcastic sitcoms ever created.  It’s a nothing sitcom, where people in the small town of Dog River perpetrate increasingly looney schemes upon one another until they approach a sort of peevish magnificence.
They Kickstarted the movie, which I missed out on, which allowed them to – well, the sitcom didn’t really need a finish, being rather episodic, but it apparently got a quite nice ending here, so I’d like to see it.
Harold and Maude: The Criterion Collection ($22.99) 
Rewatching Harold and Maude the other day made me realize just how much one movie can influence your ideals of romance.  Harold and Maude are an unlikely couple – Harold is a suicidal teenager, savagely oppressed by his parents, whereas Maude is a seventy-nine-year-old criminal – but what makes them become romantically entangled is, well, they’re good for each other.  They both have bizarre hobbies.  They both share enthusiasm for things nobody else does.  And you don’t really recognize it as a romance until about two-thirds of the way through, because this romance is rooted so thoroughly in shared camaraderie that the sexual connection is nearly incidental.
I have to thank Harold and Maude for my relationship with Gini. I really do.
And so this Criterion Edition – the Criterion Editions are always the best editions – has all behind-the-scenes extras I crave, and I must have it. I must.
An Aside: Why No Books, Ferrett? 
Normally, I have at least three or four books on the greed list, but I just got off a monstrous book tour to support Flex, and at every indie bookstore I went to I bought at least two books.  I am swamped with books, drowned in books, heaped high with so many books I cannot function.
It is wonderful.
Bosch RA 1181 Router Table ($125)
One of the joys of this year is flexing my woodworking muscles – as we speak, my friend Eric and I are refitting my garage to be a complete woodshop, complete with pull-down workbenches and better lights and customized shelves for all the equipment.  The goal is to be able to work year-round with a space heater or two.
Woodworking involves a lot of trips to Lowes to pick up just one more thing – some screws, a pocket jig, some more wood – and I keep returning to tell Gini, “Boy, you would not believe how much money we saved today!”  Theoretically, at some point I’ll make enough furniture that we’ll actually start turning a profit on the new equipment in our house, but right now we’re at least $1500 in the hole and I’m just fine with that.
(The end goal, which I anticipate I’ll get to in about two years, is to make a hidden passage bookshelf for our basement.  That’s going to be super-tricksy, though, involving a steel frame and very closely-fit shelves interlocking, so I’m going to get very good at other things first.)
In any case, the router I have right now sucks – and I would have a new router on my list, except hey, my friend Heather’s boyfriend is getting rid of his very nice router for half the price, so I’m trading up.  What we need is a table to put the router in that isn’t the sucktacular table we have now (which literally requires two people and about a half an hour to swap a router in or out), so this would be good for our woodworking needs.
(Eventually, I’ll get that dovetail jig I’ve had my eye on, but for right now it’s very nice to get handy.  I wouldn’t say I’m good with wood yet, but I can certainly put together stuff from plans, and it’s very much flexing my radically poor visualization skills.)
Crazy Hawaiian Shirts (priceless)
Hey, if you see something really ugly that’s about in my size (usually XL, but Hawaiian shirts vary radically), get it.  I need something to add to my army of loud shirts.  I enjoy this silliness.
 

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