Apr. 9th, 2017

borealgrove: (Out of Bounds)
Whew, it's been a hell of a week. I finally posted that massive, draining chapter, had a ton of meetings at work, and yesterday celebrated my best friend's birthday all day.

As an aside: I have two best friends, as I ascribe to the Mindy Kaling principle of Best Friend isn't a person, it's a tier. I still remember watching that episode of The Mindy Project and hearing angels descend from the heavens to sing as she delivered that line.

I mention this, because said best friend's birthday was celebrated with my other best friend, and my partner (who I suppose constitutes as a third best friend!). We had homemade curry at my place, went downtown for an escape room, did some shopping, went for dessert at a cafe, went to supper, and then all returned home in order to play a set of high-level missions in Warframe before going to bed. A really great day all-in-all.

The escape room we tried was one of the newest in the city, and was interesting because it is part of a themed series--once you complete all the rooms in the series (the location keeps track of who has and has not completed the rooms--'completed' meaning that you have at least made an attempt to escape), you are able to go back to the location and request access to a dossier of clues. These clues will allow you to do a scavenger-hunt-like expedition downtown at your own leisure, and as long as you solve it, you will be entered to win prizes. But obviously getting to do such a large scale puzzle is the best part! So, in other words... we have figured out what one of our goals for the summer is.

The escape room itself was really interesting and the puzzles were challenging enough that we didn't manage to escape.

Hmm. No, that's not quite right. It wasn't the puzzles that were too challenging. It's that we got stuck with two strangers. And said strangers, unfortunately, were not on our level, to put it simply.

As soon as we were introduced, one of them said "YES! We got an asian! A smart person! We're definitely going to escape!"

I just had to take a moment to breathe deeply there.

My friend and I shared a look. From that comment alone, it was clear we had been stuck with a couple of uneducated douchebags, to put it lightly. But my partner took the 'positive' stereotype with grace and said, "I think all four of us are really smart, actually!" I wanted to bite their heads off about it, but we were about to be stuck in a locked room with these chucklefucks for 45 minutes, so... I held the old tongue.

Every major clue was solved by us. They found things, but did not actually figure them out. In fact, they did worse than not figure things out: they would insist our ideas were wrong even when they were right, and just generally hamstrung us at every opportunity. I truly believe that they thought they were being reasonable, which is sad. There was one puzzle that I figured out, and it wasn't THAT difficult to understand, it just involved coordination from several people at once. The person (who had made the asian-exclamation, for lack of a better term), just would not stop hemming and saying "ummm... I don't think that's right", without offering any counter-theory for how to complete the puzzle. And eventually, after wasting a fuckload of my time by my having to explain and re-explain the simple mechanics of the solution, said "I don't really get it, I think it might be wrong...". ARGH. So I just told the person, "that's okay, maybe you can help with something else, and someone else can come help me."

We eventually asked for our free hint, because time was running out, and lo and behold, when they came in and explained the part I was TRYING to work on, their explanation was exactly what I had figured out. Asian-exclamation came over with this awkward smile and was like, "too bad you weren't doing it right".

What?! Did you?! Listen?! To the same explanation?! That I did?!

The other person, Sir-Stands-Around, stayed out of the way, mostly, wasn't actively doubting every possible solution we proposed, but when I asked him to try a combination on one of the remaining locks, buddy took over a minute to put in the four numbers. Four. Numbers. He also didn't do it correctly. So I ran over to do it myself. Like. I was trying to be patient with these people, but we would have escaped if it was just us, that's how much they actively hampered us.

Oh, right, and at the end the puzzle that Asian-Exclamation went to help with instead of mine, was the one my partner was working on (a logic puzzle, another that I started the ball rolling for, and which I would have loved to have helped with if my own puzzle could have been finished quicker!). Asian-Exclamation, like in my case, just kept talking and insisting in this slow, uncertain way, that he wasn't putting things in the right order. Which caused him to be unable to concentrate. This puzzle involved smelling some herbs and spices, and she kept insisting that two of the bottles smelled identical. Which apparently wasn't the case, but she was very certain of this. SIGH. The only silver lining is that due to her insistence on this fact (and probably even more, secretly due to the fact that the staff noticed we were pretty frustrated with being stuck with said hamstringing chucklefucks), we were given 50% off for our next visit.

Next time, we will absolutely attempt to scrounge up two more reliable puzzle-solvers to come with us.

Anyway, the rest of the day was great! I mean, even through the disappointing escape room experience, the room itself was still really interesting, with some great puzzles in it. The company was just sub-par.

Oh, and because this is slightly funny: I got my friend some David's Tea goodies for her birthday (a pinkish-red iced-tea press and 150 grams of Chocolate Cake tea in a burgundy tin), but due to the fact that buying the iced-tea press conferred a loose-tea discount on the user until the end of July (and plus, then she would also get the reward points for the purchase), I very un-subtly demanded that she hand over her Frequent Steeper card "for no reason in particular". Even funnier, it took her a minute to get it. She just gave me this strange, reluctant look until it clicked.

Oh, right. I also started using Instagram. And it's addictive. Fuck.
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