I recently picked up a copy of Dragonheart, which is a fun little card game by Rudiger Dorn. It’s a two player game that involves playing cards from your hand to certain regions on a board that will allow you to collect enough points to win. Both players have the same cards and play to the same regions on the board, so the real trick of the game is to try and give your opponent crap while being ready to take the good cards as they are placed on the board.

It’s quick and enjoyable, but suffers from a poorly chosen theme in my opinion. The cards represent dragons, heroes, treasure, and other fantasy inspired notions. Now, I have no problem with fantasy themed games, but it simply doesn’t fit with Dragonheart. It just doesn’t make sense. This dragon gets treasure, but so does the sorceress, who can be killed by a troll or by a hero, who can also kill the troll. Why does the hero want to kill the sorceress? She looks pretty sweet in the game art. I think he would try and make out with the sorceress and run away from the troll. The troll doesn’t have any treasure anyway, because it was taken by the dragon.

I can already tell that this post is going to ramble a bit, so if you are one of the few folks that reads this blog for game news or reviews alone, you might want to jump out of the plane now.

I was playing a game of Dragonheart online at with a friend, who somewhat famously doesn’t like fantasy themed games, and I mentioned my idea of how to retheme the game to something more appropriate. He loved the idea, and I’m working on the specifics of how to do it as I get the time. The specific nature of the theme change isn’t the important point I’m trying to make. The real point is that I can take the game mechanism and repurpose it into a better theme. Hang on to that thought.

I had lunch at a new Asian Restaurant that opened up a few weeks ago. The food was pretty good. I had some chicken pho that was some of the best I’ve had in Fresno. The restaurant decor was pretty strange. It was a clumsy patchwork of stuff that obviously had been pulled from elsewhere. So many businesses have gone under in this economy, I imagine it’s easy to find deals on used fixtures. I couldn’t remember what had been in this location before the Asian restaurant, but I knew I hadn’t been a customer. As far as I knew, I had never set foot in the place in my life. I got up to go to the restroom and while I walked to the back of the restaurant, it occurred to me that I had actually been there many times. I realized it had been over twenty years since I had been in this building. It was a Straw Hat Pizza when I was in college, and I used to go there with my friends fairly often because we had an apartment down the street. It didn’t dawn on me until I walked into the corridor with the restrooms. Everything else was different, but I suppose it takes a major remodel to change the location of the restrooms because of the plumbing.

The building had been repurposed. What was once a Straw Hat Pizza was now an family owned restaurant that made good pho. It hadn’t been torn down. It was still a good building. It just needed a different business. This concept rattled around in my brain for a while, and then met up with my idea for how to modify the Dragonheart theme and settled down in the back of my head. The idea wouldn’t settle down all the way; however, it wandered around in my brain, like a dog that can’t decide where to lie down. It was a restless thought.

Soon after I left the restaurant, I suddenly understood why this thought was sticking with me; I am ready to be repurposed.

The last year or so has been difficult for me. It’s becoming more challenging to deal with my depression. I am extremely dissatisfied with my job, and the thought of another year in this valley weighs on my shoulders like a Yoda that loves cake. I worry that I am too old to start a new career or move. I feel like a building that was once a children’s bookstore, then changed to a Kinko’s that was eventually bought out by FedEx, and would really like to be re-purposed as a cozy internet cafe, but would require so much renovation that it’s not worth the effort.

Honestly, I don’t think my building is so old that it can’t be renovated. I think Dragonheart is good enough for me to repurpose it with another theme. One task is more daunting than the other, but both can be broken down into short steps.

I just have to start walking.

3 thoughts on “Repurposing”

  1. I like everything about this post except the vague threat that you could leave the valley.

    Oh hell, I even loved that because you did it with a hilarious metaphor.

  2. Shoot, Jeff, I’m happy to work with you on our Dragonheart retheming project, and I hope I can help a little with any other repurposing you’ve got in mind.

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